Patheos Watermark

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Sacred Narratives

Like many Christians, Methodists believe that fallen humans are saved when their sins are forgiven through the sacrifice of Jesus Christ on the cross. John Wesley's distinctions between prevenient, justifying, and sanctifying grace distinguish Methodists from other Protestant Christians.

Ultimate Reality and Divine Beings

Methodists, like most Christians, believe in a triune God, in Jesus Christ, and in the reality of angels. More recently, some Methodists have proposed less traditional models for understanding God and Jesus.

Human Nature and the Purpose of Existance

Human nature before the fall was good. After the fall it became self-centered, though free will enables one to respond to God's grace. The purpose of life is to respond to grace so that one might live sinlessly and glorify God.

Suffering and the Problem of Evil

Methodists believe that God created the world entirely good. Suffering enters the world because of evil, and evil is entirely the result of a free choice by (some) angels and (all) humans to sin by putting themselves above God. Suffering can be alleviated only by God’s grace and power.

Afterlife and Salvation

John Wesley believed in a traditional idea of an immortal soul that spends eternity either in a place of blessedness called heaven or a place of torment called hell. One's destination depends on whether one is saved, forgiven by God's grace and converted to a life growing toward sinless perfection.