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There is a tradition, perhaps strongest in Lutheranism, that opposes what it calls "Decision Theology". Biblical support for opposing Decision Theology would come in passages like, "No one can say Jesus is Lord except by the Holy Spirit," "faith is a gift", and the seemingly involuntary conversion of Paul. The existence of a tradition of denying our ability to choose Christ on our own is a verifiable historical fact. I don't wish to debate it with this question.

When discussing Decision Theology in evangelical circles, I often see them react as if the only viable alternatives involve predestination and a lack of personal responsibility. It is clear that the Lutheran tradition of opposing Decision Theology is not mere predestinationism. I don't wish to debate that either.

A careful reading of this tradition would not confuse it with predestination. But the strongest practitioners of this tradition almost sound as if they were advocating Universal Salvation. The hearer is invited to celebrate what Christ has done for them, rather than "accepting" it.

Question: how have opponents of Decision Theology distanced themselves from Universal Salvation? (Sources: Confessions, sermons, seminary training, etc?)

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Just a side note: you paired off "predestination and lack of personal responsibility" as if they go together. This is a common misunderstanding but not at all true. – Caleb Jul 14 '13 at 20:12
This seems a little broad. You're asking people why/how they don't accept certain doctrines while accepting others and that seems a bit open ended. – LCIII Jul 9 '14 at 14:22
Can you tell us a little more about the differences, as you understand them? I can google "Decision Theology", but it appears you may think some make a decision and some don't, contrary to any view I know about. The extent to which I choose Jesus independently versus the Holy Spirit encouraging or even compelling me to choose is a significant difference though. Predestination vs choice is not the point. In all the Protestant theologies I know, both are present; it's a matter of balance between the two. – disciple Aug 8 '14 at 20:37
I recommend you pick a specific tradition and ask about it. If it takes several questions, then do so. For instance, while both Calvinists and Lutherans base their opposition to decision theology in original sin and total depravity, you correctly point out that those two drastically differ. Add to this jsut two more groups: the Roman church and classical Arminians. Here you have two more wildly different theologies that would reject decision theology (as we know it today) and are grounded just as much in original sin, yet are much more synergistic than their Reformation friends. – San Jacinto Jun 11 at 11:59
This question would benefit from a definition of "Decision Theology." After reading the question, I still don't know what Decision Theology is, which makes it rather difficult to even understand the question, let alone answer it. It should not be necessary to go to outside sources in order to understand the question. – Lee Woofenden Jul 8 at 16:07

protected by Community Aug 24 '14 at 16:57

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