Where does Catholicism agree/disagree with TULIP?

Where does Catholicism agree/disagree with these main points of Calvinism?:

James Akin addresses this in an article in THIS ROCK magazine:


Right Here:


Total Depravity:
The Catholic Church has a radically different understanding of Original Sin than Calvinists, their position leads to a corrupt human nature, the Catholic position leads to a plain human nature (uncorrupted) which has been stripped of sanctifying grace.
Both agree in the “total inability” of man to save himself, but total depravity is more than that and incompatible with Catholicism.

Unconditional Election:
More or less in agreement. Though Catholics would add that God does not predestine to hell, while Calvinists would generally say He does.

Limited Atonement:
Catholics totally disagree with the Calvinist understanding of the atonement, and thus limited atonement is incompatible with Catholicism.

Irresistible Grace:
This is similar to the Catholic notion of “efficacious grace,” though the Church (and Scripture) teach grace can be resisted at times, also when comparing each theology as a whole the Catholic position is still significantly different from the Calvinist view.

Perseverance of the Saints:
This terminology was stolen from people like St. Augustine and applied to the Calvinist position. The Catholic Church teaches Perseverance of the Saints as the Scriptures and Doctors of the Church taught it. Calvinist cannot technically believe in the concept of “persevering” because they believe in eternal security where the concept of falling does not exist. It would be as if a man was standing on solid ground at sea level and was told to “persevere” by not falling off a cliff. There is no cliff, he is on flat ground, the concept of perseverance doesn’t exist.
The Catholic (Biblical) view of perseverance is that salvation can be lost and you must avoid falling to be saved in the end. Further, even if someone does fall, they can still persevere by repenting before death.

While Jimmy Akin’s Tip-Toe through TULIP is handy, it misses some critical distinctions between Calvinism and Catholicism. It is handy for showing how far a Catholic can go towards those concepts and still be within the parameters of orthodoxy, it does not mean all Catholics have to embrace those views.

The question is backwards. It should read “where does TULIP agree/disagree with Catholicism?”

Catholicism is the unmovable rock, not TULIP

putting the cart before the horse will lead some to confusion.:thumbsup:


you guys are awesome! thanks so much for all your answers everywhere on these forums!

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