Tag Archives: Roger Olson

The distinction between Reformed Arminians and Wesleyan Arminians

In Roger Olson’s helpful review of Free Will Baptist theologian Matthew Pinson’s book, Arminian and Baptist: Explorations in a Theological Tradition, the distinction between “Reformed Arminianism” and “Wesleyan Arminianism” is described very helpfully. Olson explains that Pinson’s book is a defense of “Reformed Arminianism” which he treats as the historical theological tradition of Free Will Baptists—as opposed to other Baptists and Wesleyans/Methodists. He appeals to Arminius himself to show that the Dutch theologian was firmly … Continue reading

Posted in Historical Theology | Tagged , , , , | 13 Comments

Is Mormonism Christian?

Roger Olson has written a long post in answer to the question of whether Mormonism is Christian. That question will probably seem to many evangelicals to be hardly worth asking, but Olson’s answer is carefully nuanced and it grows out of much greater knowledge of Mormonism than most evangelicals possess. I commend the whole post to you if you are at all interested in what is happening within Mormonism, but here is the nub of its … Continue reading

Posted in Ecclesiology, Soteriology | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Does theology matter to churches?

The other night, when reading a letter I wrote to my parents during my first year as a missionary in the Philippines at the age of 26, I chuckled when I saw that I had signed off with: “Love, Terry, ‘your incurable theologian.’” How right I was. Forty five years later I still haven’t been cured. Paraphrasing the wonderful comment olympic sprinter Eric Liddell made to his sister in the film “Chariots of Fire,” I … Continue reading

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How evangelical Christianity has changed during my lifetime

I have spent all my life in a very similar context to the kind of evangelical environment that Roger Olson describes as his experience. My parents were evangelical missionaries; I attended a missionary boarding school for all but one of my years of elementary and high school education; I attended an evangelical Bible College, graduate school and Seminary; I married a young woman who had also grown up in this same evangelical environment; we spent … Continue reading

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God “weakly actualizes” evil

I have been reading a fine paper that Greg Welty presented at the annual ETS meeting in 2013, entitled “Molinist Gun Control: A Flawed Proposal?” In that paper, Welty expands on his earlier (ETS 2010) contention that the Molinist model of divine causation “inherits all of the alleged liabilities” attributed to Calvinism, “with respect to divine authorship of sin, responsibility and blame.” (Interestingly, Welty’s argument may be seen as supporting Roger Olson’s proposal that Molinism … Continue reading

Posted in Providence, Theology Proper | Tagged , , , , , , | 2 Comments

A Calvinist’s ruminations on an Arminian view of God’s providence

I did not identify any of the models that I presented in Providence and Prayer as an/the “Arminian model.” Arminianism developed within the Reformed tradition as a distinctive position derived from a synergistic understanding of salvation. As a theological framework, it is therefore fundamentally synergistic, affirming that God has limited his ability to ensure that the history of the world turns out according to the will of his eternal purpose, in all its particulars. Within … Continue reading

Posted in Providence, Theology Proper | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

The theological deficit within evangelicalism as seen in views of the incarnation.

How long can evangelical churches remain evangelical, given the widespread increase in biblical illiteracy and the theological ignorance which accompanies it and which is probably even more severe? Evangelical leaders are aware of the problem, but I see little sign of its being effectively addressed in western churches, and the problem is compounded in the majority world where church growth seriously outpaces the training of ministers and lay leaders. In a blog post published on … Continue reading

Posted in Christology, Evangelicalism | Tagged , | 3 Comments

Dallas Willard and open theism

I was saddened by the death of Dallas Willard at what looks like a relatively young age (77) from my present perspective. But he made a great contribution to the world during his life. I am one of the many who were informed, inspired, and challenged by his writings and by his godly example as a fine scholar, a brilliant teacher, and a faithful and humble follower of Jesus. As I have read tributes to Willard … Continue reading

Posted in Theology Proper | Tagged , , , | 8 Comments

Was the fertilizer plant explosion in Texas a “good” event?

April 18 was a very sad day in West, Texas. A fire at the fertilizer plant resulted in an explosion that destroyed the plant, killed some 15 people, wounded over 100, destroyed some homes, damaged a church, and brought pain and trouble into the lives of many people. By anyone’s definition, it was a tragedy but, unlike the bombing at the Boston marathon, this tragedy came about through no malicious intent by any human being. … Continue reading

Posted in Providence, Theology Proper | Tagged | 3 Comments

Further thoughts concerning Molinism and Arminianism

A few days ago, I responded to Roger Olson’s opinion that Open Theism is a form of Arminianism but Molinism is not. I’ll wrap that conversation up with these citations of our further conversation in the comment thread of Roger’s post, particularly regarding Molinism. Roger wrote: Thanks, Terry. I don’t consider Greg Boyd a Molinist. His “might counterfactuals” are not at all what traditional Molinism/middle knowledge claims. His “neo-Molinism” is not, IMHO, any version of … Continue reading

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