Cavinism is a major theological stream within Protestantism, but it often mystifies the gospel and hides it from many people. One such example is the Calvinist notion of perseverance of the saints, which suggests that faith itself is not just a matter of believing the gospel in a general sense. This idea leads to the conclusion that faith is a work and that if a person could believe the gospel, they would be more righteous than those who do not believe it.
However, this idea is not supported by scripture. In the book of Romans, faith is described as the means by which we can be justified before God, not through our own righteousness. The Apostle Paul explains that faith is credited as righteousness because it is through faith in God, rather than our own righteousness, that we can be justified (Romans 4:5). Furthermore, faith is not a demonstration of one’s strength or righteousness, but rather a surrendering of it.
Faith is not one of the things listed as a human exhibition of virtue and strength, especially since what we’re required to believe is hidden in foolishness and weakness (1 Corinthians 1:27-29). The cross is a demonstration of God’s wisdom and strength hidden in foolishness and weakness (1 Corinthians 1:18). A person who believes the gospel is not more righteous than someone who doesn’t, as the Gospels show that the Pharisees did not believe because of their own righteousness, but rather the lepers, the prostitutes, and the sinners, who did.
In conclusion, the Calvinist notion of faith as a virtuous work is a myth that does not align with scripture. Faith is not a demonstration of one’s strength or righteousness, but rather a surrendering of it. It is through faith in God that we can be justified before Him, not through our own righteousness