[Milton-L] crucifixion

JD Fleming jfleming at sfu.ca
Sun Apr 6 16:56:30 EDT 2014

----- Original Message -----

From: "alan horn" <alanshorn at gmail.com> 
To: "John Milton Discussion List" <milton-l at lists.richmond.edu> 
Sent: Sunday, 6 April, 2014 13:42:45 
Subject: Re: [Milton-L] crucifixion 

And even your prima facie capacity to be saved is to his credit rather than yours, because he gave you prevenient grace: the grace that makes it possible for you to receivegrace. 

The doctrine of total depravity was affirmed by both orthodox Calvinists and Arminians like Milton. 

--So, in this moment, we do indeed have Milton asserting a doctrine consistent with Calvinism. Which is what you, originally, objected to. 


I would agree that the doctrine does not entail non-universality (since God could perfectly well afford prevenient grace for everybody). But I don't see how it doesn't align with irresistibility. When God reaches in to "remove the stony" from Adam's and Eve's hearts--thus rendering possible the heartfelt scene of prayer and repentance we have just witnessed--that looks pretty darned irresistible. 

That God’s grace makes possible repentance and prayer is not inconsistent with that grace being merely sufficient and not irresistible. To get clear about these distinctions, it’s worth reviewing the well-known discussions by Dennis Danielson and Stephen Fallon, among others. 

--I have some ideas about some texts, and other things, that might be worth your review. But citing them would involve mimicking yr condescension, so don't think I will. In any case, the point, still glowing amidst the theological pedantry, is that PL does not ask us to imagine that A and E are saved because they repent. Perhaps you would like to find a way to redirect your interests to the text. JD Fleming. 

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J ames Dougal Fleming 
Associate Professor 
Department of English 
Simon Fraser University 

Burnaby -- British Columbia -- Canada. 

Upstairs was a room for travelers. ‘You know, I shall take it for the rest of my life,’ Vasili Ivanovich is reported to have said as soon as he had entered it. 
-- Vladimir Naboko v , " Cloud, Castle, Lake' 

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