The Arminians believe it is the SPIRITUAL duty of the unregenerate to savingly believe on Christ, as they have the inherent ABILITY to exercise saving faith which results in the new birth.

The Low and Moderate Calvinists do not believe it is the spiritual duty of unregenerate sinners to savingly believe on Christ, as they are dead in trespasses and sins and therefore do not have the inherent ability to savingly believe on Christ. However, they do believe it remains the MORAL duty of the unregenerate to savingly believe on Christ, because one’s inability to exercise saving faith does not negate his/her responsibility to do so.

The Hyper-Calvinists do not believe it is the SPIRITUAL or MORAL duty of unregenerate sinners to savingly believe on Christ, as they have neither the ABILITY or the AUTHORITY to do so. You see, one’s spiritual duty to exercise saving faith revolves around the issue of ability, whereas one’s moral duty to exercise saving faith revolves around the issue of authority. The Hyper-Calvinist agrees with the Low and Moderate Calvinists that the unregenerate are dead in trespasses and sins and therefore do not have the inherent ability to savingly believe on Christ. However, the Hyper-Calvinist disagrees with the Low and Moderate Calvinists that it remains the moral duty of the unregenerate to savingly believe on Christ. So long as the sinner remains in an unregenerate condition, he/she is duty bound to the terms and promises of the covenant of works, which contains no gospel promises, blessings or duties. It is only after the sinner is born again, that he/she is experientially delivered from the terms and promises of the covenant of works, and is brought under the terms and promises of the covenant of grace, at which time he/she is given the authority (or warrant) to savingly believe on Christ. For the Hyper-Calvinist, the whole matter revolves around the authority under which a sinner is responsible to God—the unregenerate are responsible to God under the terms and promises of the covenant of works, whereas the regenerate are responsible to God under the terms and promises of the covenant of grace. In essence, one’s responsibility to God is determined by the covenant under which he/she is subject to God. Henceforth, the dichotomy of divine sovereignty and human responsibility is a false construct when speaking of man’s responsibility towards God.

In this study, Jared Smith sets forth these issues, in response to Roy Hargrave’s definition for Hyper-Calvinism, explaining man’s responsibility according to the viewpoint of the Arminians, Low-Calvinists, Moderate-Calvinists and Hyper-Calvinists. A defense is given for the position of Hyper-Calvinism.



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