PART 1: Introduction
PART 2: Defining The Will
PART 3: Dividing The Will
PART 4: Denying The Will
PART 5: Displaying Free Will




By James Michael Grippe and Rand Winburn


Man, by his fall into a state of sin, hath wholly lost all ability of will to any spiritual good accompanying salvation; so as a natural man, being altogether averse to that good, and dead in sin, is not able by his own strength, to convert himself, or to prepare himself thereunto.

                                                                                Westminster Confession, 1643

                                                                                              Chapter IX, section III


If anyone shall affirm, that man's free will, moved and excited by God, does not, by consenting, co-operate with God, the mover and exciter, so as to prepare and dispose itself for the attainment of justification; if moreover anyone shall say, that the human will cannot refuse complying if it pleases; but that it is inactive, and merely passive; let such a one be accursed.

If anyone shall affirm,  that since the fall of Adam, man's free will is lost and extinguished; or that it is a thing titular, yea a name, without a thing, and a fiction introduced by Satan into the Church; let such a one be accursed.

                                                                                              Council of Trent, 1563

                                                                                 Session 6, Ch.16, Canons 4-5


In faith, the human intellect and will cooperate with divine grace; “Believing is an act of the intellect assenting to the divine truth by command of the will moved by God through grace.”

                                                                 Catechism of the Catholic Church, 1995

                                                                                                                   Sec. 155



            We have, as set forth in these declarations, two vastly different theologies.

The first, Protestant, denies the ability of the will to choose holiness or to follow Christ. The second, Roman Catholic, admits the ability of the will to consent and cooperate with the will of God in salvation. According to centuries of Catholic teaching, man has the will to choose to follow Christ, as well as the will to choose to leave Christ. So different are these teachings that they lie as opposites on the theological spectrum. Like Cain and Abel or Jacob and Esau, they war with one another in a polemic that has gone on since the days of Augustine and Pelagius. 

But which view is correct? The importance of determining the answer is not to be underestimated, for we seek to know the revealed mind of God in this matter. Above and beyond this, the glory of God in our salvation is at stake in the hearts and minds of Christians. The correct view exalts God to His rightful place as our alone Savior, while the incorrect view debases Him, subverting His work in our salvation. The one view shouts His sovereign grace in election, while the other gives nothing but lip service to it. In the former, man is humbled. In the latter, he is unduly exalted.

The Protestant Reformers clearly saw the bondage of man’s will as taught in the Scriptures and evinced by  their creeds. Catholics, Evangelical Arminians, and cults of today, on the other hand, champion the alleged freedom of man’s will. As one who formerly held the Arminian position for over 20 years, co-author, James, can testify that the Scriptures, which teach the bondage of man’s will, are rarely, if ever, addressed by church leaders, let alone seriously studied by Christians. Furthermore, it is the contention of these present authors, if put to the test, few in the visible church could even offer a definition of the 'will.' The challenge goes out  to all Arminians to please locate the verses in Scripture establishing man's free will in salvation. We then challenge these same men to reconcile any verses found which allegedly teach their position with the whole counsel of God.

In this treatise our purpose is to: (1) define terms; (2) cite the scriptural authorities proving the doctrine of the bondage of the will and its attendant enslavement to the heart; and (3) unmask the errant doctrine of free will for what it really is.

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