God’s Power and Man’s Free Will – Part 5 – Predestination

In this series I’ve explored what some see to be a conflict between God’s Power and Man’s Free Will. From a Catholic perspective there is no conflict at all. For a Catholic, God’s free grace empowers mankind to use his free will to “cooperate” with God’s will that desires all mankind to eternal salvation. God desires all of His children to return to Him for eternity, but God does not force His will on us. God does not force mankind to love Him.

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Unlocking the Mystery of the Bible

Hello SCT followers. I just wanted to let you know that there is a fantastic Bible Study course about to start at St. Martin de Porres Catholic Church.

unlockingbibleThe study is called Unlocking the Mystery of the Bible and is produced by Jeff Cavins and the folks at Ascension Press.

If you have ever struggled to see the “Big Picture” of the Bible story then this is the class for you.

The course begins Wednesday, September 28th and meets for 8 consecutive Wednesdays.

Each meeting is very short – only about 1 hour and 20 minutes long. Each class starts with a 30-35 minute DVD video presentation by Jeff Cavins as he explains the 12 color coded periods of the entire Bible story. We then continue for another 35 minutes where I’ll lead a light discussion on the DVD we just viewed, what we learned and the things we need to remember.

If you’re new to the Bible or just need a fantastic “Big Picture” refresher on God’s Word then make plans and join us as we Unlock the Mystery of the Bible.

There’s only two things you need to do:

First: sign up and register for the class.
You can do that by visiting the St. Martin de Porres Bible Study website (click HERE) and follow the instructions for registration.
you can go directly to Ascension Press (click HERE) and register.

In either case, after you register and purchase your student book (only ~$20), it will be mailed directly to your mailing address. Allow about 1 week for delivery so don’t delay if you want to receive your book before the first class.

Second: Clear your calendar and join us.
Stop by beginning Wednesday September 28th at 7:00 pm at St. Marin De Porres Catholic Church in Yorba Linda, CA. We will meet in the St. Elizabeth classroom for 8 consecutive Wednesdays – Sept 28th through November 16.

Any questions? email us at:



God’s Power and Man’s Free Will – Part 4 – Freedom to Fly

In my last post we saw that John Calvin concluded that man’s free will has no role in his salvation. Calvin was rightly concerned about any theory that reduced the providence of God or that gave mankind too much credit. However, as we saw his extreme TULIP theology is burdened with some very troubling conclusions regarding the nature of God.

In this post I will present a simple summary of the Catholic view of God’s plan for our salvation. This teaching not only preserves the unlimited providence and power of God, but also acknowledges that man was created with and retains a free will. We try to avoid getting too complicated here at SCT so I’m going to present the teaching using a few pictures and a simple analogy. Now, all analogies are not perfect especially when we try to describe the mysteries of God so don’t take this too far. However, I think you’ll find this perspective to be very intuitive and easy to understand.

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God’s Power and Man’s Free Will – Part 3 – Graphical TULIPs

In this post we will continue to explore that age-old dilemma of reconciling the infinite power of God with the existence of man’s free will as it pertains to man’s Salvation.

In my last post I presented in written form a summary of the Calvinist position on Salvation. [These beliefs are often referred to with the acronym TULIPtulip-pic which stands for Total Depravity, Unconditional Election, Limited Atonement, Irresistible Grace and Perseverance of the Saints.]

I believe that TULIP represents an unreasonable theological position because if you believe TULIP, then you must also believe some rather uncomfortable ideas about the nature of God and man (which we’ll discuss later). It’s certainly true that discussions about Salvation can get very complicated very quickly and TULIP is no exception. Here at SimpleCatholicTruth we strive to explain the complicated in simple terms. Therefore, I thought we’d have some fun and look at TULIP in cartoon/graphical form.  Let’s get started:

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God’s Power and Man’s Free Will – Part 2 – Calvin’s TULIP

So much can be said about God’s power in relation to man’s free will that our simple collective heads might just explode. It’s true, this topic has been debated by geniuses for thousands of years and there remains controversy and misunderstandings. In hope of any Simple Catholic (Truth) progress, I would like to constrain the discussion to that of Salvation. Ha, you might say, that really isn’t limiting the topic much and to a point you are correct.

However, unless we try to “divide and conquer” we won’t be able to make any progress at all.  So, with that said, I’d like to continue Part 2 of the series of God’s Power vs. Man’s Free Will by taking a look at what I would hold as the extreme limit of the debate, and that is the Calvinistic interpretation of God’s Power in relation to man’s free will. Calvin concluded in his TULIP theology that as far as salvation was concerned, man had no free will at all.

Continue reading “God’s Power and Man’s Free Will – Part 2 – Calvin’s TULIP”