According to a lesson in Sunday school, every Reformer believed this; it is not something unique to Calvinism.
Arminiam didn't agree with it. As also others did not.
Arminianism is based on theological ideas of the Dutch Reformed theologian Jacobus Arminius (1560–1609) and his historic supporters known as Remonstrants. His teachings held to the five solae of the Reformation, but they were distinct from particular teachings of Martin Luther, Huldrych Zwingli, John Calvin, and other Protestant Reformers. Jacobus Arminius (Jakob Harmenszoon) was a student of Theodore Beza (Calvin's successor) at the Theological University of Geneva. Arminianism is known to some as a soteriological diversification of Protestant Calvinist Christianity. However, to others, Arminianism is a reclamation of early Church theological consensus.
Dutch Arminianism was originally articulated in the Remonstrance (1610), a theological statement signed by 45 ministers and submitted to the States General of the Netherlands. The Synod of Dort (1618–19) was called by the States General to consider the Five Articles of Remonstrance. These articles asserted that
- Salvation (and condemnation on the day of judgment) was conditioned by the graciously-enabled faith (or unbelief) of man;
- The Atonement is qualitatively adequate for all men, "yet that no one actually enjoys [experiences] this forgiveness of sins, except the believer ..." and thus is limited to only those who trust in Christ;
- "That man has not saving grace of himself, nor of the energy of his free will," and unaided by the Holy Spirit, no person is able to respond to God's will;
- The (Christian) Grace "of God is the beginning, continuance, and accomplishment of any good," yet man may resist the Holy Spirit; and
- Believers are able to resist sin through Grace, and Christ will keep them from falling; but whether they are beyond the possibility of ultimately forsaking God or "becoming devoid of grace ... must be more particularly determined from the Scriptures."
As I highlighted above, I believe, and know for sure, that arminianism is a reclamation of past early church doctrine. No theologian believed what Calvin taught: Double Predestination.
The early church protected itself from false doctrine.
I don't see this at all. There is much to consider here. Whose definition of good are we to use, ours or God's? What is the motivation behind the unsaved doing good deeds? God used utterly pagan nations to punish Israel, so could it not also be that in certain instances God uses unbelievers to do good deeds? Unless I am mistaken, this would be what Reformed believers refer to as common grace.
I don't know about common grace. Grace is love. If God is Grace, why would He arbitrarily send anyone to hell? Does He shower us with Grace AND Hate to those He deems should be lost?
The rest of your post seems rather straw-manish. They believe in freewill, apart from hyper-Calvinists, and that Jesus died for all who were going to be saved. The mix of freewill and God's sovereignty is a mystery for every believer, not just those in the Reformed tradition.
All of christianity has a problem reconciling man's free will to God's sovereignty.
I have come to my understanding of this, which I'd be happy to share if you wish.
However, how does a calvinist believe in man's free will, if the most important thing in his entire life (salvation) is NOT up to his free will to choose??
You say above that Jesus died for all who would be saved.
No. Jesus died for the whole world. It's up to each of us to CHOOSE to be saved.
1 John 2:2
Paul also says in Romans 5:8 that God demonstrated His love for us, that while we were still sinners, He died for us.
Who was Paul speaking to in Romans? Everyone, or just those few who would be saved??