Luther v. Edwards: The Human Will

In modern theological discussion, the issue over the freedom of the will is one that seems to gain momentum with each passing generation. Copious amounts of literature have been written from both sides of the subject with no definitive resolution in sight.[1] Therefore, as theologians often do, appeals are made to the great Christian thinkers of church history in order to elucidate this vexing question – in hopes of clarifying our thoughts or simply to validate our presupposed conclusions. Nevertheless, as the debate rolls on, a great cloud of witnesses continues to speak to this topic with greater relevance.

Two works that can aid us tremendously in our research are Martin Luther’s The Bondage of the Will (1525) and Jonathan Edwards’ The Freedom of the Will (1754). At first glance, these two titles seem to suggest opposing views on the subject. However, upon further reading, such is not the case. It is the two-fold purpose of this paper to show that (1) while both men remained comfortably within the bounds of Reformed harmartiology, their differing views on the will stem chiefly from their differing definitions of “freedom,” (2) and while each thinker defends a common theme of sinful depravity, their differing perspectives of the will indicate their differing perspectives of God Himself. At the center of this issue lay the doctrine of God. If we wish to view transitions within Reformed theology, we must first begin with the will. For Luther as well as Edwards, the issue of the will was the nexus of theology and anthropology.

Two Centuries, One Issue

The weight and significance that modern scholars have consigned to the issue of the will is manifested most prominently in the abundant literature concerning the theology of Calvinism.[2] Consequently the reader may be tempted to think that an appeal to Martin Luther may be a somewhat anachronistic endeavor. However, while predating Calvin, Luther believed that the doctrine of the bondage of the will “out to be maintained and defended even at the cost of life” and that “this false idea of ‘free-will’ is a real threat to salvation.”[3] Therefore the issue of the will should not be viewed simply as a “Calvinist” affair, but one of Christianity itself. Jonathan Edwards was of a similar mind. In the preface to his Freedom of the Will, the author boasts, “I utterly disclaim a dependence on Calvin, or believing the doctrines which I hold, because he believed and taught them, and cannot justly be charged with believing in every thing just as he taught.”[4] Again, for both men, the issue of the will was more than scholastic debate. As will be shown, it was also deeply apologetical.

Before beginning a discussion of each man’s work, however, it is prudent and necessary to briefly investigate the beginning and end of each volume. In other words, the context in which these treatises were written and the goal for which they were written is important. While each Reformed mind was a product of the Renaissance, only one can be called an Enlightenment thinker. And this plays a role in the approach to the human faculties such as the will.

In a very Luther-esque statement written to Wolfgang Capito in 1537, Luther said of his life’s works: “I would rather see them all devoured. I acknowledge none of them to be really a book of mine, except perhaps the one On the Bound Will and the Catechism.”[5] In many ways, De Servo Arbitrio (literally “On the Enslaved Will”) was and is the embodiment of Luther’s theology. One can then see why B.B. Warfield called The Bondage of the Will “in a true sense the manifesto of the Reformation.”[6] The polemical work was against Desiderius Erasmus, a man of considerable genius and a whit to match that of Luther’s.

Heiko Oberman has called Erasmus “Europe’s most famous Greek scholar” during his lifetime.[7] The year before Luther nailed his 95 theses to the door of the church at Wittenberg Castle, “the prince of humanists” had published the first edition of the Greek New Testament in 1516. However, despite J.I. Packer’s assertion that Erasmus’ edition was “the first and perhaps the greatest step in the story of Biblical textual criticism,” Erasmus’ critiques of the Catholic Church were more ethical than theological.[8] Hence in his Diatribe on Free Will (1524), Erasmus remarks that the issue of the freedom of the will is “irreligious,” “idle,” and “superfluous.” What ensued was Luther’s Bondage of the Will – a collective attack upon that assertion with the full force of his incipient Protestant theology.

Jonathan Edwards, on the other hand, faced not the semi-Pelagian scholasticism of the Medieval Catholic Church, but the latent Arminianism breeding itself in Enlightenment “Christianity.” While Edwards acknowledges the broad scope of the term Arminianism, he takes aim at men like Thomas Chubb, an English Deist who typified eighteenth century modernism. For Edwards, the three essentials to the Arminian-Pelagian definition of “liberty” were the self-determining will, volitional indifference, and contingence.[9] Therefore the pastor from Northampton employs more philosophical and metaphysical argumentation in his treatise than does Luther, a man who looked with suspicion upon the Aristotelian scholastics of his day.

Michael McClymond and Gerald McDermott have even contended that Edwards’ metaphysical bent “placed him nearer to such patristic and medieval thinkers as Augustine, Anselm, Aquinas and Bonaventure.”[10] Conversely, the reader will find that Luther’s polemic is much more consistently steeped in Scriptural citation than his Reformed counterpart. After all, the former was eschewing the premise that revelation could somehow be subordinated to unaided reason. In his magisterial Here I Stand, Roland Bainton observes, “Erasmus was after all a man of the Renaissance, desirous of bringing religion itself within the compass of man’s understanding.”[11] In this way, it could be said that Edwards had just as much in common with Erasmus as with Luther!

Fortunately, these distinct individual contexts also serve to accentuate what Luther and Edwards had in common. For both theologians, the question of the human will was not simply soteriological. It was also epistemological. For Luther, it was the “hinge” upon which salvation turned precisely because it provided the “clear-cut distinction” between God’s power and ours. “Self-knowledge, and the knowledge and glory of God, are bound up with it,” Luther insisted.[12]

Edwards held true to the same conviction. He, like Calvin before him, believed that all knowledge was of two kinds: “Of all kinds of knowledge that we can ever obtain, the knowledge of God, and the knowledge of ourselves, are the most important.”[13] This is where the will entered the Edwardsean equation. Knowledge of self was also bipartite: the human understanding and will. As a result, for Edwards, “all virtue and religion have their seat more immediately in the will.”[14] For the Christian, the exercise of the will was an exercise in godliness. It provided the nexus of proper theology and anthropology – knowledge of God and self. One mutually informed the other, and when we properly understand the human will, we can begin to understand the divine will. In Edwards’ apologetic words, “we argue his being from our being.”[15]

What is “Freedom”?

Having established that for both men a proper view of the will was inextricable with godliness, it is now incumbent to investigate what each man thought of the will itself. It will be shown here that where Luther and Edwards differed was not in their view of sin, but in their different conceptions of “freedom.” To begin, we look at the volume that Scott Hendrix has suggested we call Bound Choice.[16]

In order to examine Luther’s conception of freedom, one must first investigate his view of depravity. Luther suggests that “no stronger argument could be brought against ‘free will’” than the fall of Adam.[17] His fall from grace not only displays humanity’s complete impotence, but its utter need for the Spirit to do anything pleasing to God. In fact, Bernhard Lohse has even gone so far as to suggest that the former friar “at one significant point went beyond Augustine, whom he most often correctly cited against Erasmus: the bondage of the will is no longer for Augustine and the entire tradition merely a result of the fall. It results from human creatureliness.”[18] In other words, to Luther, simply by virtue of being human apart from the indwelling presence of God, Adam is destined to sin. Today, unlike prelapsarian Adam, we are sin-stained and “by nature children of wrath.”[19] For this reason, Luther asserts that “‘free-will’ without God’s grace is not free at all, but is the permanent prisoner and bondslave of evil, since it cannot turn itself to good.”[20] Herein lies the notion of “freedom” to Luther – the ability to turn to good and please God.

This principle is illustrated best in perhaps Luther’s most vivid description of the will: the two riders. According to the teacher of theology, man’s will is like a beast standing between two riders: “If God rides, it wills and goes where God wills…If Satan rides, it wills and goes where Satan wills. Nor may it choose to which rider it will run, or which it will seek; but the riders themselves fight to decide who shall have and hold it.”[21] Therefore, in a very real sense, Luther’s conception of sinful depravity is both passive and active. Mirroring Luther’s own personal Anfechtungen, the sinner finds himself in the center of a cosmic struggle of good and evil – at the whim of Satan or Christ. In his exegesis of Romans 9, Luther also explains the hardening of Pharaoh in both passive and active terms.[22] There is a compatibilistic element to Luther’s doctrine of providence, even as he confirms that “God foreknows nothing contingently” and that man “sins and wills evil necessarily.”[23] Still, Luther’s conception of “freedom” places man and Satan in the same depraved category: “Now, Satan and man, being fallen and abandoned by God, cannot will good (that is, things that please God, or that God wills), but are ever turned in the direction of their own desires, so that they cannot but seek their own.”[24] Again, Luther defines freedom in terms of pleasing God and willing the good.

It should also be noted that Luther’s argument for sinful depravity does not rest simply on volition. He also employs texts like Luke 23:34 (“they know not what they do”) to support an intellectualist argument for sin. In a rhetorical statement that sounds remarkably like Edwards, Luther asks, “For how can you will that which you do not know? You certainly cannot desire the unknown!”[25] Therefore the noetic effects of the Fall are enough to also paralyze and disorient the human will. Man is depraved in his mind as well as in his motive.

Owing to his view of “freedom,” Luther concludes that the phrase “free-will” is an “empty term” because, as he reasons, a lost freedom is no freedom at all. One would make no more sense crediting an invalid with health.[26] This “abuse of speech,” according to Luther, is not only contrary to common sense; it utterly overthrows our use of language. This is why Luther, borrowing from Augustine, suggests that Erasmus re-name his version of free will “vertible-will” or “mutable-will.”[27] In Luther’s mind, the utter powerlessness of carnal man to do what is pleasing to God disqualifies any sense of “freedom” to the will. Carl Trueman interprets Luther’s thought incisively when he states, “The bondage of the post-fall will is foundation for Christian certainty, for how can we ever be certain of our salvation if even a fraction of it depends upon ourselves, weak, sinful, and vacillating as we are?”[28] Luther’s knowledge of self began with bondage, and his knowledge of God began with emancipation from that bondage.

Still, despite Luther’s trepidation at the concept of “freedom” in the will, such hesitance is not found in Edwards two centuries later. Whereas Luther mocked the powerlessness of the will, Edwards declared, “The faculty of the will is that faculty or power, or principle of mind, by which it is capable of choosing.”[29] For the Connecticut River Puritan, a sense of “power” was germane to the very definition of the will! This is consonant with Edwards’ belief that in every act of the will there is an act of choice. Providing the seminal idea for John Piper’s so-called “Christian Hedonism,” Edwards contended, “The will always is as the greatest apparent good is.”[30] In other words, the will is determined by the strongest motive as it appears in the mind. For this reason, Edwards believed that “the will always follows the last dictate of the understanding,” the understanding itself being the whole faculty of perception and apprehension.[31] Conrad Cherry thus describes Edwardsean faith as “the intimate joining of cognition with a lively, affectionate volitional operation.”[32] Like Luther, faith involved both mind and will.

However, unlike Luther, Edwards advocated the idea that the notion of “ability” was not inconsistent with human sinfulness. The man who was to become president of the college of New Jersey (later Princeton University) distinguished between two kinds of inability: natural and moral. As opposed to the inability to do something even if it is willed, (natural inability), moral inability was that which lacked the inclination and motive to excite the act of the will.[33] In other words, the unregenerate sinner is still naturally able to live a godly life, but is morally unwilling to do so – therefore he is still morally accountable before God.

Aside from moral accountability in the face of divine imperatives, Edwards’ distinction between natural and moral inability resulted in two things: (1) It gave Edwards a seemingly higher view of natural theology than Luther, (2) and it allowed Edwards to retain a notion of “freedom” within the sinner. From his perspective, “a man cannot be truly said to be unable to do a thing when he can do it if he will.”[34] As McClymond and McDermott explain, “a sinner who declines the offer of salvation cannot blame God for not giving him the desire to repent – he must concede that he really did not want to.”[35] Unlike the thought of John Locke, which Edwards borrowed heavily for his theology of the will, the latter did not believe that will and desire, while distinct, could contradict one another. In fact, for Edwards, the act of the will and doing what pleased a man were virtually synonymous. It is here that Edwards the American Puritan distances himself from Luther the continental Reformer. George Marsden, in his monumental biography of Edwards, identifies this when he asserts, “Calvinist revivalists, such as Edwards himself, were part of the eighteenth-century revolution that accentuated individual choice and subverted the authority even of many Reformed churches and clergy.”[36] To Edwards, every act of the will was an act of choice. Therefore the question remains as to how Edwards defined freedom, especially when he argued for the consistency of necessity and liberty.

Edwards plainly defines “freedom” or “liberty” as the “power, opportunity, or advantage, that any one has to do as he pleases.”[37] To act voluntarily is to act electively. Still, perhaps even more telling of the Edwardsean will is what he identifies as contrary to freedom: “a person’s being hindered or unable to conduct as he will, or being necessitated to do otherwise.”[38] In other words, Edwards’ definition of freedom simply entailed the ability and opportunity to do what one willed to do, without compulsion or coercion. Freedom was not the “ability” to do otherwise, but rather the “ability” to willfully act upon one’s given volition. As long as one was not restrained in his choice, even if that choice was to walk into Hell, he was free! To Luther the anti-papal polemicist, such a proposition was nonsensical. To Edwards the metaphysical theologian, it was consistent with human psychology. Theologians have hence used this “freedom of inclination” in successive generations to advocate for a compatibilistic model of divine providence.[39]

Reformed Harmartiology

Having shown that each man defined “freedom” differently – one in terms of the ability to please God and the other in terms of the ability to do unhindered that which one willed to do – the question then turns to sin. Did each Reformed thinker view sin differently? Did either theologian depart from a classically “Reformed” framework? It is the contention of this paper that while approaching the subject from two different theological and philosophical angles, each thinker fell comfortably within the bounds of Reformed hamartiology and soteriology.

It could be said that Edwardsean faculty psychology was one collective answer to a very basic question: “What influences, directs, or determines the mind or will to come to such a conclusion or choice as it does? Or what is the cause, ground, or reason, why it concludes thus, and not otherwise?”[40] Edwards famously concluded that the will always is as the greatest apparent good is. Interestingly, upon review of Luther’s dialectic with Erasmus, one finds that the Wittenberg Reformer is never at odds with this thinking. In fact, Luther’s Bondage of the Will is perfectly consistent in its view of human depravity as that of Edwards’ Freedom of the Will.

Luther too saw no compulsion in the act of the will, but recognized a motivating desire within: “The will, whether it be God’s or man’s, does what it does, good or bad, under no compulsion, but just as it wants or pleases, as if totally free.”[41] Here, in a statement that sounds remarkably Edwardsean, Luther affirms a hint of “freedom” in the very act of the will…despite the very title to the book! For him, a lack of compulsion equaled some relative degree of freedom. This is why Luther makes a distinction between necessity of force and necessity of infallibility, the latter referring to time and not action, and being that for which he contended.[42]

To the Wittenberg Reformer, God was intimately involved in every human action, but not in a way that would coerce humans to sin: “for it is not under unwilling constraint, but by an operation of God consonant with its nature it is impelled to will naturally, according to what it is (that is, evil).”[43] It is with this doctrine of providence that Luther provocatively calls Judas Iscariot a “traitor of necessity.”[44] However, this principle of the inviolable will also stretched into salvation as well. According to Luther, “when God works in us, the will is changed under the sweet influence of the Spirit of God. Once more it desires and acts, not of compulsion, but of its own desire and spontaneous inclination.”[45] Many modern scholars would take exception with Luther’s seemingly contradictory language regarding a changed will being uncompelled, however such tension is extant in the thought of Luther and Edwards.[46] According to Edwards’ Lockean psychology, the Spirit not only illumined brand new ideas of Christ to the mind, it also moved the sinner to action. As Conrad Cherry explains, “the Spirit operates as an infused power in the soul, directly moving powers to action.”[47]

Likewise, just as Luther’s doctrine of the non-coerced will matches Edwards, so Edwards’ doctrine of providence matches Luther’s. In other words, the pastor from Northampton also viewed sin in a way that directly, yet indirectly, involved the action of God. In his exegesis of Romans 1 and the “giving men up to their own hearts’ lusts”, Edwards states, “hereby is certainly meant God’s so ordering or disposing things, in some respect or other, either by doing or forbearing to do, as that the consequence should be men’s continuing in their sins.”[48] Therefore, it has been sufficiently shown that while each Reformed thinker held differing views of the word “freedom,” both men remained comfortably within the bounds of Reformed harmartiology.

Two Distinct Views of God

After ample evidence presenting their respective notions of sin and freedom, it is left to examine Luther and Edwards’ views of the will itself. Due to their similar (not identical) doctrines of divine providence, it can be assumed that their doctrines of God were likewise analogous. However, a few remaining questions remain to be asked. Did they view the will differently? If so, what? Did these differences, small or large, reflect differing views of God? It will be the goal of this final section to examine such questions.

We begin with Luther. According to the Magisterial Reformer, not only was “free-will” an “empty term” for sinners, it could only rightly be ascribed to God Himself! He opines, “free-will is obviously a term applicable only to the Divine Majesty; for only He can do, and does (as the Psalmist sings) ‘whatever he wills in heaven and earth.’ (Ps. 135:6)”[49] Such is indicative of the theology of the man who famously claimed, “Let God be God” and absorbed a measure of the theonomist William of Occam.[50] Luther had an acutely high view of God and the notion of “freedom” was one that he was only willing to attribute to God alone. Even the glorified Christian was not “free” in a literal sense, for as Luther writes, “Here, too, there is no freedom, no ‘free-will’, to turn elsewhere, or to desire anything else, as long as the Spirit and grace of God remain in a man.”[51]

For Martin Luther, ‘free-will’ also impugned upon biblical pneumatology. What need was there of the Spirit if ‘free-will’ could overcome the needs of the flesh? Luther defined the gospel preached as “just the word that offers the Spirit and grace for the remission of sins which was procured for us by Christ crucified.”[52] Therefore Luther’s view of the will remained inextricable from his view of God as Spirit. For this reason, he was unwilling to consign “free-will” to sinful man nor to relinquish it exclusively from God alone. As Scott Hendrix reflects, “Luther was, however, a realist about the human condition…For Luther, God was indeed a harsh judge of evil, but God was also merciful, trustworthy, and committed to his creation, regardless of the extent to which it was corrupted.”[53]

That Martin Luther held a high view of God few can question. His distinction between deus absconditus (the hidden God) and deus revelatus (the revealed God) was later incorporated by the likes of Soren Kierkegaard and Karl Barth.[54] But what are we to make of Edwards? Does his contention for a “free” will somehow diminish a transcendent God? Moreover, does that theology stand opposed to Luther? To begin, like Luther, we must examine Edwards’ view of sin. The Puritan’s distinction between natural ability and moral ability is not one Luther did, or would, make explicitly. However, it is essential for the way Edwards viewed God. Man’s sin and accountability before God laid in his moral inability, and this was precisely where Edwards found greatest admiration and worship for the Creator: “he is, in the most proper sense, a moral agent, the source of all moral ability and agency, the fountain and rule of all virtue and moral good…The essential qualities of a moral agent are in God in the greatest possible perfection.”[55] For Edwards, God was not just infinitely great. He was also infinitely good, and in his Freedom of the Will, Edwards stresses this divine attribute in a way that Luther never does in Bondage of the Will. For Edwards, even the act of willful faith was an extremely moral act. It is for this reason that Joseph G. Haroutunian has called Jonathan Edwards the “theologian of the Great Commandment.”[56] Love to God was paramount. In this way, Edwards distanced himself from Luther. For Edwards, love was of the essence of faith. For Luther, love sprang from faith. We see this vividly in Edwards’ insistence upon God as the supreme moral agent and our utter moral inability.

This also informs Edwards’ pneumatology. He too defined the will in such a way as to accentuate the work of the Holy Spirit. After all, to him, the notion of a self-determining will was “absurdity.” However, because the will followed the last dictate of the understanding, Edwards believed the Spirit to illumine the understanding in two ways: “the good Spirit should so illuminate our understandings, that we, attending to, and considering what lies before us, should apprehend, and be convinced of our duty; and that the blessings of the Gospel should be so propounded to us, as that we may discern them to be our chiefest good.”[57] In Edwardsean pneumatology, there is an undeniable correlation between ethics and aesthetics, and we see that clearly in the mind. While for Luther, the Spirit was synonymous more with power, for Edwards the Spirit was synonymous with love. According to Roland Delattre, “Both love and delight, both holiness and joy, both perfection and happiness, that is, both beauty and sensibility, are together identified by Edwards with the Holy Spirit.”[58] In his parallel between the Spirit and love, Edwards resurrected Augustinian Trinitarianism in order to highlight the beauty and morality of God. In this sense, Edwards’ view of the will was not diametrically opposed to Luther’s, but was rather tendential, emphasizing another aspect of God’s being.


The full title to Edwards’ work is in fact An Inquiry into the Modern Prevailing Notions of that Freedom of the Will which is supposed to be essential to moral agency, virtue and vice, reward and punishment, praise and blame. (1754) For anyone who cares to read the entire name, it becomes evident that Edwards clearly disagreed with the “prevailing” notions of freedom in modern America, and not necessarily with Luther’s. Each thinker simply defended the Gospel against the zeitgeist of their respective centuries. For that reason, Edwards’ work can seem more metaphysical and psychological than can Luther’s. However, to say that their hamartiologies and soteriologies opposed one another would find no more validity than to say that the Gospel of Mark and the Gospel of John carry opposing Christologies. It has been the aim of this paper to show that, (1) while holding different definitions of “freedom,” each thinker remained within the bounds of Reformed hamartiology, and (2) their differing views of the will reflect distinct emphases upon God’s greatness and goodness. Perhaps by looking back to these two monumental works, the discussion of the freedom of the will can continue to advance in a Gospel-centered direction.

[1] Perhaps the most recent notable addition to this debate is Scott Christensen’s What About Free Will? (Phillipsburg, NJ: P&R Publishing Company, 2016)

[2] Whosoever Will: A Biblical-Theological Critique of Five-Point Calvinism (ed. David L. Allen, Steve W. Lemke. Nashville, TN: B&H Publishing Group, 2010) serves as an example.

[3] Luther, Martin. ed. J.I. Packer, O.R. Johnston. Bondage of the Will (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Academic, 2012), 90, 106.

[4] Edwards, Jonathan. Freedom of the Will (Grand Rapids, MI: Soli Deo Gloria Publications, 2011), ix.

[5] Luther to Wolfgang Capito, July 9, 1537, in WABr8, 99; LW 50, 173.

[6] Warfield, Benjamin Breckinridge. Studies in Theology (Carlisle, PA: Banner of Truth, 1988), 471.

[7] Oberman, Heiko A. Luther: Man Between God and the Devil (New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 2006), 123.

[8] “Historical and Theological Introduction,” ed. J.I. Packer, O.R. Johnston, The Bondage of the Will, 17.

[9] The Freedom of the Will, 33-34.

[10] McClymond, Michael J.; McDermott, Gerald R. The Theology of Jonathan Edwards (New York, NY: Oxford University Press, 2012), 105.

[11] Bainton, Roland H. Here I Stand: A Life of Martin Luther (Nashville, TN: Abingdon Press, 1978), 98.

[12] The Bondage of the Will, 78.

[13] Freedom of the Will, xi.

[14] Ibid., xi.

[15] Ibid., 49.

[16] Hendrix, Scott H. Martin Luther: Visionary Reformer (New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 2015), 162.

[17] The Bondage of the Will, 156.

[18] Lohse, Bernhard. Martin Luther’s Theology: Its Historical and Systematic Development (Minneapolis, MN: Fortress Press, 2011), 167.

[19] Ephesians 2:3.

[20] The Bondage of the Will, 104.

[21] Ibid., 103-104.

[22] Ibid., 207.

[23] Ibid., 80, 149.

[24] Ibid., 205.

[25] Ibid., 186.

[26] Ibid., 148.

[27] Ibid., 137.

[28] Trueman, Carl. Luther on the Christian Life: Cross and Freedom (Wheaton, IL: Crossway Publishing, 2015), 60.

[29] Freedom of the Will, 1.

[30] Ibid., 7.

[31] Ibid., 14.

[32] Cherry, Conrad. The Theology of Jonathan Edwards: A Reappraisal (Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press, 1990), 22.

[33] Freedom of the Will, 28.

[34] Ibid., 31.

[35] The Theology of Jonathan Edwards, 342.

[36] Marsden, George M. Jonathan Edwards: A Life (New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 2003), 439.

[37] Freedom of the Will, 32.

[38] Ibid., 32.

[39] Ware, Bruce. “A Modified Calvinist Doctrine of God,” Perspectives on the Doctrine of God: Four Views (Nashville, TN: B&H Academic, 2008), 100.

[40] Freedom of the Will, 44.

[41] Bondage of the Will, 81.

[42] Ibid., 220.

[43] Ibid., 212.

[44] Ibid., 213.

[45] Ibid., 103.

[46] Lemke, Steve W. “A Biblical and Theological Critique of Irresistible Grace,” Whosoever Will: A Biblical-Theological Critique of Five-Point Calvinism (Nashville, TN: B&H Publishing, 2010)

[47] The Theology of Jonathan Edwards: A Reappraisal, 37.

[48] Freedom of the Will, 173.

[49] Bondage of the Will, 105.

[50] Roland H. Bainton, in his The Reformation of the Sixteenth Century (Boston, MA: Beacon Press, 1985) observes, “In some respects he remained a disciple of the scholastic, William of Occam. Yet to pass from the reading of Occam to Luther is to move through the same air from the Arctic to the Equator.” (23)

[51] Bondage of the Will, 103.

[52] Bondage of the Will, 180.

[53] Martin Luther: Visionary Reformer, xii-xiii.

[54] Feinberg, John S. No One Like Him: The Doctrine of God (Wheaton, IL: Crossway Publishing, 2006), 60.

[55] Freedom of the Will, 35.

[56] Haroutunian, Joseph G. “Jonathan Edwards: Theologian of the Great Commandment,” Theology Today, I (October, 1944), 361-77.

[57] Freedom of the Will, 89.

[58] Delattre, Roland Andre. Beauty and Sensibility in the Thought of Jonathan Edwards: An Essay in Aesthetics and Theological Ethics (New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 1969), 156.


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