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Perseverance of the Saints: God Completing His Work (Digging into Dort, Point 5, Part 1)

People sometimes profess their faith and join a church but later fall away from the church (and their faith!) either in thought or actions. Does this mean that God’s grace has somehow failed that person? Was this person saved and then lost their salvation? The Fifth (and final) Main Point...

Responding to God’s Irresistible Grace (Digging into Dort, Points 3 and 4, Part 5)

Points 3 and 4 of the Canons of Dort describe God’s grace as irresistible and effective in saving sinners; the will of humans cannot thwart or stop it. However, this image of irresistible grace sometimes leads people to believe that Reformed theology leaves people as robots and/or that God...

The Means By Which God Regenerates (Digging into Dort, Points 3 and 4, Part 4)

The last post looked at how the Canons of Dort indicate that God regenerates people - makes them alive - with the result that they turn to Christ in faith. How do we know if it happens in us, and how can we be used by God in the process of regenerating sinners? This section of the Canons of Dort...

Regenerated to Believe (Digging into Dort, Points 3 and 4, Part 3)

What came first, the chicken or the egg? What comes first, regeneration (being made alive by God) or faith (believing in God)? These two questions are often debated and discussed, but we can find the answer to the second question in the Canons of Dort. The answer is that God first regenerates...

Not Mostly Dead, But All Dead (Digging into Dort, Points 3 and 4, Part 2)

The movie The Princess Bride has many great quotes, one of which describes a person’s condition this way: “It just so happens that your friend here is only MOSTLY dead. There's a big difference between mostly dead and all dead. Mostly dead is slightly alive.” In many ways, the...

Two Points for the Price of One (Digging into Dort, Points 3 and 4, Part 1)

People often like the “buy one, get one free” specials at stores. In some ways, the Canons of Dort offer a “buy one, get one” special when it comes to its teaching. You see, there are five Main Points in the Canons of Dort … sort of. There are actually four main...

Why Did Jesus Die?

Before transitioning from Point 2 of the Canons of Dort to the next Points, I thought it would be beneficial during this Holy Week to pause and consider the meaning of Jesus’s death. Over the years, theologians have discussed the reason for Christ’s death and its meaning, offering a...

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