Myth #7: Arminianism is not a theology of grace. Olson contends that the “material principle” of Arminianism is prevenient grace and that all of salvation is “wholly and entirely of God’s grace.” So there.
Here is Olson’s analogy. Humans have fallen into a pit and are unconscious. God calls to them and God’s call awakens them. God pours water into the pit (prevenient grace) and encourages the humans to relax so they can float in God’s grace and as the water rises they escape from the pit of sin and death.
Olson finds biblical support in John 6: the prevenient calling grace. That calling involves calling, convicting, illuminating, and enabling. All humans can do is “cooperate by not resisting” (160). The quickening ray is God’s drawing grace.
Again, he trots out the evidence from Arminius into modern Arminians, including the Remonstrants, Wesley and moderns like Wiley.
Arminius: “I ascribe to grace the commencement, the continuance, and the consummation of all good” (162). Grace, acc to Arminius, is however resistible. He denies irresistible grace.
Olson contends that this grace is preeminent for Arminius. “Too many Calvinists,” he says on p. 163, “do not mention this and undermine their credibility, which raises questions about their integrity.”
Arminius taught an evangelical synergism: all the efficacy is in God’s grace but God grants humans the “God-granted ability to resist or not resist it” (165). The decisive factor is God’s grace, not the humand decision to resist or not resist. This is the view also of Wesley and Tom Oden.