Universalism

The belief that everyone goes to heaven.  It is similar to inclusivism but goes beyond its scope to include all of humanity.

Like annihilationism, this belief stems out of God’s love.  Proponents of this view hold that a loving God is incapable of sending people to hell.

Limited universalism is a variation of universalism that states the devout of all religions go to heaven.  This at least makes religion worthwhile and not pointless.

Of course universalism appears to go directly against teachings of the Bible about heaven and hell.  Most importantly the question must be asked why Jesus had to die on the cross if belief in Him is unnecessary to get into heaven.

For further reading on this, see the article Fate of the Unbeliever.

Unconditional Election

A belief in Calvinism that God elected those who would be based unconditionally, not based on any merit of their own.  In eternity past God determined those he would save and he predestined them for salvation.

Numerous letters in the New Testament are addressed to or speak of the elect.  The Calvinistic approach is that these are saved individuals God predestined beforehand and because of man’s total depravity only those who were elected will be saved.  Arminians claim that election is not unconditional but rather based upon foreknowledge.

TULIP

TULIP is an acronym for the five points of Calvinism.  It stands for:

Total Depravity

Unconditional Election

Limited Atonement

Irresistible Grace

Perseverance of the Saints

The five points were written in response to the points of Arminianism which has five points but no well known acronym such as TULIP.

Trichotomy

Trichotomy is the belief that man is made up of three parts – body, soul, and spirit.  While some believe the soul and spirit to be the same thing others maintain that it is different.  Paul writes in 1 Thessalonians 5:23 “May your whole spirit, soul, and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.”

Likewise, Hebrews 4:12 speaks of the Word of God dividing the soul and spirit.

Others maintain that man is a dichotomy made up of body and soul.

Total Depravity

A belief held by Calvinism that man is totally unable to save himself.  Man is sinful through and through and the only way that he can be saved is by an act of God.  Man must be elected by God in order to be saved because his depraved nature does not allow him to choose God.

Some argue that the word total is unnecessary as depravity by definition implies totality.

Arminians also believe that man will not seek God on his own as is taught by scripture although it is not a basic tenet of their beliefs.  To address this fact, they believe that God must extend prevenient grace which allows humanity to choose God.

See also: unconditional election, limited atonement, irresistible grace