Examining the Calvinist’s Fallacy of Equivocation/Amphibology in Romans 5:18

Therefore as by the offence of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness of one the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life. (Romans 5:18)

Romans 5:18 is the conclusion of an argument that begins back in verse 12. In the King James Version of the Bible, verses 13-17 are placed in parenthesis presumably to indicate that they form the exposition of verses 12 and 18. So, verse 12 contains four premises that form a Sorites (i.e. a cumulative chain of syllogisms), verses 13 through 17 are the details and development of these premises, and verse 18 is the conclusion of the argument.

In Romans 5:12, Paul reveals four premises/propositions:

  1. By one man sin entered into the world
  2. and death (entered into the world ) by sin
  3. so death passed upon all men,
  4. for that all (men) have sinned

All propositions come in one of four categories: All, None, Some and Some not. Putting the four Romans 5:12 propositions into categorical form, one comes up with the following: Continue reading