Interview with Roger Olson, Author of “Against Calvinism” (Zondervan)

Here’s the video of my interview with Roger Olson, professor of theology at Truett Theological Seminary and author of “Against Calvinism” (Zondervan).

Vodpod videos no longer available.

Here are the questions I asked as well as the minute marks at which Olson answered them.

  • 1:05 Are you against everything Calvinism stands for, or only particular things?
  • 2:40 What is the historical background to TULIP, “the five points of Calvinism,” or what Calvinists refer to as “the doctrines of grace”?
  • 5:02 What is the unified testimony of the ante-Nicene church regarding these issues? Why don’t Calvinists take this testimony into account?
  • 8:32 Can you demonstrate that Jesus, Paul, or other New Testament writers were not theological determinists? What about Romans 9-11?
  • 15:50 Why do the “good and necessary consequences” of Calvinist doctrines make God a “moral monster,” despite Calvinists’ best intentions?
  • 24:00 How does an Arminian deal with the many verses in the Bible that speak about election and predestination?
  • 28:00 Examples of cooperation and competition between Arminians and Calvinists in evangelical history.
  • 30:00 How can Arminians and Calvinists disagree without being disagreeable? (I interrupted Olson in the middle of his answer with a question about which Arminian books and theologians he would recommend.)
  • 36:00 Given its biblical deficiencies, why does Calvinism have a dominant presence in the American church?
  • 39:33 What do you appreciate most about the “New Calvinist” movement? (I interrupted Olson with a further question about Calvinism and evangelism/missions.)
  • 42:03 What is “middle knowledge”? I asked how, on an Arminian basis, God can predestine based on foreknowledge if, as Olson argues, middle knowledge is impossible.
  • 48:05 What are Pelagianism and semi-Pelagianism, and how is Arminianism distinct from them? Is “Arminianism of the head” susceptible to Pelagianism or semi-Pelagianism?
  • 53:32 Are universalists Arminians?
  • 56:38 How to disprove limited atonement.
  • 59:18 The Assemblies of God’s fourth reason for being is compassion. Does Arminianism or Calvinism sit better with an emphasis on compassion ministries?

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