Predestination / Election
For sure the Bible talks about “predestination” and “election,” but what is predestined? Does God unchangeably force specific names to be saved, or did God elect (choose) the type of person to be saved? Consider the following texts which bear on this question …
- Rom 8:29 whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son
- Ephesians 1:4 … he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love.
- Ephesians 2:10 For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in
- II Thessalonians 2:13 … God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation through sanctification of ... Spirit and belief of the truth
Notice the above passages talk about the type of person that God chooses to be saved, and certainly prove our election is conditional. The conditions are stated loud and clear. The only question seems to be:
- Did God predestinate that particular persons by name will meet the conditions in the sense of God miraculously forcing them to submit? (Calvinism), or
- Did God predestinate that those (as a class) who meet those conditions by their own choice will be the ones who are elected/saved?
Either option fits the above verses equally well. But doesn't II Peter 1:10 (“give diligence to make your calling and election sure”) make it clear the second option is correct? If our election is completely decided regardless of what we do, why would God tell us to make our election sure? Obviously we must do something to be one of the elect.Illustration: Bear Bryant “predetermined” that those on his team would have a clean cut haircut. Does this mean he held them down and cut their hair by force, or does it mean he kicked them off the team if they did not conform of their own freewill?Conclusion: Our Predestination/Election is Conditioned upon what type person we are.