Jeremiah 9:6

"'You live in the midst of deception; in thier deceit they refuse to acknowledge me', Declares the Lord."

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Total Predestination

Predestination in the Bible
You may or may not be familiar with the term, “predestination”. So, before I get started I’ll explain. Romans 8:29-30 says, “For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the likeness of his son, that he might be the firstborn of many brothers. And those he predestined, he also called; and those he called, he also justified; and those he justified, he also glorified.” Two main views have developed to explain this passage and define predestination.

The select Few
Total predestination is the view that God has chosen only a select group of people to receive salvation. This view interprets Romans 8:29-30 very literally, (which is a good thing). Look at Romans again, the whole passage is a string of events, God “foreknew”, then “predestined” then “called”, “justified”, and finally “glorified”. What got me is the “called” part. Predestination comes before being called, so it seems like God doesn’t call everyone to himself. But wait a second, to be justified; (forgiven of your sins) you must be called. And we all know that salvation, (glorification) is impossible without forgiveness. So in the end, it seems like God doesn’t give many people a chance to accept his forgiveness, and receive salvation. Although this view is as strait forward as they come, I believe it is a total misunderstanding, and a huge contradiction to the rest of the bible. The Bible says over and over again that our God is a God of love. First Timothy 2:3-4 says, “This is good, and pleases God our savior, who wants all men to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth”. How could a God of love, who wants everyone to be saved, create this world knowing that by doing so, he was condemning thousands to hell? And why would he limit his kingdom to a select few when such a high price was paid for our ransom?
What’s a better explanation?
The view I believe to be true is called predestination. It is the view that God extends salvation to everyone. However, out of his divine wisdom, God foreknows who will end up in heaven. Think about it, God knows your decisions before you make them, that doesn’t mean he forces you to make certain decisions, you make them, he foreknows them. So, at the end of your life, God knows if you will have decided to accept his gift of salvation, or reject it. This is what meant by “Foreknew” is. Being predestined, then, means that before you were born, god knew Whether or not you would be saved. In other words, god “pre-knew” your destination! The next step is being called. God wants everyone to be saved, and therefore, extends his invitation to everyone. However, to those predestined for heaven, he extends a special, personal calling. And the greatest calling in each of our lives is to tell others about God. In this way, God is able to extend his invitation to people all over the globe.

An Excuse to be Apathetic
Needless to say, your view of Predestination has severe implications on your life. it determines your view on the nature of God, and determines how you live your faith out every day. But most importantly, your view of predestination will determine how you regard witnessing. Every three seconds a death occurs on earth, how many of those souls do you think end up in heaven? One out of ten? One out of fifty? Less? I don’t know, but the scary thing is, if you believe in total predestination, there’s nothing you can do about it. And even worse, God doesn’t care. This gives many Christians an excuse to be apathetic, and to “feel good” even as they watch thousands of souls cast into an eternity of suffering. The truth is, we can do something in all those lives! In fact, god’s primary way to invite people to his kingdom is through us. And picture this, when you help someone to find Christ, God already knew you would! So, that person is already predestined for heaven. Again, I can’t stress this enough, that person was not going to heaven until God reached out his invitation through you. God knows your deeds before you make them, but it’s your decision to make them. Let’s not be apathetic Christians. We have some serious work to do!


Lydia said...

Wow I think that worldview curriculum is making you think, Elijah. GREAT post!!! Hey have you thought about researching Obama and socialism and posting your views on that? That would fit under "cultural deceptions"...

Elijah said...

Yeah, I should write something on socialism. Great idea, I'll see what I can do.


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