An online comic titled "Arminian Jesus" ends up doing little to advance the Calvinist position.
In it, Jesus says, "Follow me and I will make you fishers off men."
One of the prospective Apostles replies, "Bro, hasn't Jesus ever heard of prevenient grace?"
Arminian/Wesleyan theology understands preveniet grace to mean that, despite being called, the individual is ultimately able to refuse the gift of salvation to their own eternal consequences.
The other compatriot replies to Jesus, "I don't know. I will consider the offer and get back to you."
A number of things could be pointed out about this comic.
Most obviously, if we are to adhere this rigidly to the speculations of Reformed theology, isn't the artist guilty of creating a graven image?
After all, didn't thinkers in this school of thought at one time toss fits over Catholic artistic depictions of the Savior?
There hangs in one of my rooms a painting of Jesus that I have been told that my grandparents initially obtained from no less a thoroughly Fundamentalist ministry as Oliver Greene's The Gospel Hour which my grandparents donated to the Independent Baptist Church that they were members of.
In order to resolve the harangue that resulted not so much on the part of the pastor but rather on the part of rabblerousers in the congregation over this act of generosity, my grandparents GRACIOUSLY agreed to retake possession of the painting.
Secondly, how do we not know that at particular chronometric instance along the unfolding of the temporal continuum depicted in the cartoon that those to whom Christ extended this particular offer could not have turned Him down?
If they were like robots or zombies without wills of their own, wouldn't it have been sufficient for Christ to have said "Follow me" or even more efficient to simply snap His fingers like Q from Star Trek for His will to be imposed and carried out?
If it had been impossible for those hearing not to obey the sound of His voice, there would have been no reason to verbally offer the incentive or promise of a considerably more satisfying vocational challenge.
Frederick Meekins is an independent theologian and social critic. Frederick holds a BS in Political Science/History, a MA in Apologetics/Christian Philosophy from Trinity Theological Seminary, and a PhD. in Christian Apologetics from Newburgh Theological Seminary.