Even More Proof that Election / Eternal Security = the “P” in TULIP

Here is another example of how Election is tied to the “P” in TULIP and is essentially understood to be about Eternal Security.

This doctrine [Perseverance] does not stand alone but is a necessary part on the Calvinistic system of theology. The doctrines of Election and Efficacious grace logically imply the certain salvation of those who receive these blessings. If God has chosen men absolutely and unconditionally to eternal life, and if His Spirit effectively applies to them the benefits of redemption, the inescapable conclusion is that these persons shall be saved.

Loraine Boettner, The Reformed Doctrine of Predestination, 8th ed. (Grand Rapids, Eerdmans 1958), p. 182)

5 thoughts on “Even More Proof that Election / Eternal Security = the “P” in TULIP”

  1. Dr. Lybrand,

    You could make the case that the doctrine of Eternal Security is a subset of the doctrine of the Perseverance of the Saints but the two are most definitely not the same. This short article makes the point very well. I believe in eternal security but not perseverance of the saints.


  2. Glenn,

    Thanks for your thoughts. I don’t think you could make the case for Eternal Security being a subset of Perseverence. In fact, perseverence becomes an Arminian doctrine if Eternal security is not first. The Puritans say we persevere because we are saved (Elect / Eternally Secure). not the other way around.

    What I mean by this is that the Arminian can say one must persevere in good works to be finally saved…so in that way the Puritan view and the Arminians are a like practically in their focus on works (oftentimes, and I think I say fairly, diminishing their focus on Christ).

    The article you reference is a good example of how the Puritan View is sub-division withing Calvinism. When I speak of Calvinism, I’m trying to be faithful to the orginal documentaiton in things such as Dort and Westminster. Of course, these also differed from Calvin himself.

    While I do think Dr. McMahon is accurately depicting Puritan-Calvinism, I disagree with his assessment…especially as he merges sanctification and salvatin together. I do know how he represents the ‘other view’ is incorrect. No one thinks it’s OK for a believer to sin.

    His thought is that those who believe one can sin without it effecting his eternal destiny in heaven…these same ones have a ‘license’ to sin.

    He states, “Those who think they have a license to sin are not changed and saved by grace. They are still in sin.”

    This is a bit of the problem I have with the view. He is stating that anyone who thinks he will go to heaven even if they don’t stop sinning are obviously lost.

    This gives no room to immaturity or deception (even temporary). It also tempts people to put works (life change) into the content of the gospel.

    I believe the Bible teaches that we are saved by faith alone in Christ alone apart from works. Whether or not I will change is not a part of the gospel message unless we are adding works to the message.

    Change is an issue of growth (sanctification). Keeping this distinction clear keeps the gospel clear. I believe of the Puritans stumbled over this.


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