What Do Free Will Baptists Believe?
The Bible -The Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments were given by inspiration of God, and are our infallible rule of faith and practice.
God - There is one living and true God, revealed in nature as the Creator, Preserver, and Righteous Governor of the universe; and in the Scriptures as Father, Son, and Holy Ghost; yet as one God, infinitely wise and good, whom all intelligent creatures are supremely to love, adore, and obey.
The Holy Spirit - The Scriptures assign to the Holy Spirit all the attributes of God.
Christ - Christ is God manifest in the flesh; in His divine nature truly God, in His human nature truly man. The mediator between God and man, once crucified, He is now risen and glorified, and is our ever present Savior and Lord.
The Government of God - God exercises a wise and benevolent providence over all beings and all things by maintaining the constitution and laws of nature. He also performs special acts, not otherwise provided for, as the highest welfare of men requires.
The Sinfulness of Man - Man was created innocent, but by disobedience fell into a state of sin and condemnation. His posterity, therefore, inherit a fallen nature of such tendencies that all who come to years of accountability, sin and become guilty before God.
The Work of Christ - The Son of God by His incarnation, life, sufferings, death, and resurrection effected for all a redemption from sin that is full and free, and is the ground of salvation by faith.
Election - God determined from the beginning to save all who should comply with the conditions of salvation. Hence by faith in Christ men become His elect.
The Christian Sabbath - The divine law requires that one day in seven be set apart from secular employments and amusements, for rest, worship, holy works, and activities, and for personal communion with God.
The Terms of Salvation - The conditions of salvation are: (1) Repentance or sincere sorrow for sin and hearty renunciation of it. (2) Faith or the unreserved committal of one's self to Christ as Savior and Lord with purpose to love and obey Him in all things. In the exercise of saving faith, the soul is renewed by the Holy Spirit, freed from the dominion of sin, and becomes a child of God. (3) Continuance of faith and obedience unto death.
Freedom of the Will - The human will is free and self-controlled, having power to yield to the influence of the truth and the Spirit, or to resist them and perish.
Salvation Free - God desires the salvation of all, the Gospel invites all, the Holy Spirit strives with all, and whosoever will may come and take of the water of life freely.
Perseverance - All believers in Christ, who through grace persevere in holiness to the end of life, have promise of eternal salvation.
Resurrection, Judgment, and Final Retribution - The Scriptures teach the resurrection of all men at the last day. Those who have done good will come forth to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil unto the resurrection of damnation; then the wicked will "go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into life eternal."
What Is "Reformation Arminianism?"
Jacobus Arminius, a Dutch theologian of the 16th century, contested the dominant theological ideas advanced by the well known Protestant reformer John Calvin and his disciples. Historically, Arminius has been frequently misunderstood and often reinterpreted by friend and foe alike. Even today, one who calls himself "Arminian" does so with considerable risk, as the name means different things to different people and comes in various flavors. Many automatically think of Arminians as liberal, differeing little from Universalists, at least holding to salvation by works, and possibly espousing heretical views of the Trinity or the goodness of man. In truth, some "Arminians" have held and even now hold such beliefs. Not so of Arminius himself, his original followers, or able contemporary theologians such as Dr. Robert Picirilli.
We unashamedly advocate a very specific form of Arminianism as the best resolution of the tensions between the two doctrinal positions of Calvinism and Arminianism. In what Dr. Picirilli calls "Reformation Arminianism," we reclaim the original views of Arminius and his defenders. This is an Arminianism that defends:
- total depravity
- the sovereignty of God to control all things for the certain accomplishment of His will.
- God's perfect foreknowledge of, and the certainty of, all future eventsincluding the free, moral choices of human beings.
- the penal satisfaction view of the atonement.
- salvation by grace through faith and not by works, from beginning to end.
- an apostasy that cannot be remedied.
For more information, please email us or come visit us and ask about the book, Grace, Faith, Free Will by Dr. Robert E. Picirilli.