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ElShaddai

Pedestination or Free Will

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I have noticed people state that they believe in predestination over free will. I know where i stand on this subject but would like to here your thoughts on the subject first.

Please back up your stance with scripture.

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Calvinism or Arminianism. I've done years and years worth of research on this everlasting debate. In summary, this is who I am (picking and choosing),

I believe in a slight hybrid of total depravity (as sovereign grace simply cannot work for a possibility of free will), I believe in perseverance of the saints, I believe that all have the free choice to choose to follow God or deny the truth (conditional election) and unlimited atonement.

I completely deny the idea of predestination of any kind, including a "special plan for your life" that people seem to stress so much via Jeremiah 29:11. It is wrong, un-Biblical and gives people a false sense of comfort. I do, however, believe God has called people into particular areas of ministry, but this is some, not all. And also, as Psalms says, 'He guides our footsteps', that God has a right and a wrong decision for what we face.

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Paradoxically, it's a combination of both predestination and free will.

How is this possible?

We first need to establish that divine foreknowledge does not necessarily equal divine foreordination. It's a bit difficult to explain this, so I will link you to part of a video presentation by esteemed scholar Dr William Lane Craig.

The gist of the video is that rather than God's knowledge of the future "forcing" us to act in the way He predicted, our own choices are causally prior to God's foreknowledge, and hence, we choose our own "predestined" fate.

Think about what you were doing 2 years ago. This happened in the past, and you cannot change it. What you did then has been set in stone. But the fact that you know what you did then and cannot change it now does not mean that at the time you did not have free will.

What will you be doing in two years time? Then, you will remember how you chose to act on this day, and you will not be able to change it. It will be set in stone. But that doesn't mean that you can't choose your own course of action today.

Hence, if God who is outside of time knows what we will do in 10 years time, how is that any more a contradiction of our free will than us knowing what we did 10 years ago?

Now onto Predestination; God has complete knowledge and knows both all things that have taken and will take place, but also every potentiality. I.e. He knows what you will do in 10 years time, but also knows what you would do if in the past you dropped out of college, never dated your girlfriend, or met a different group of friends. As indicated in the above paragraphs, this does not violate our free will.

So when creating this world rather than a different "possible" world, God knew in advance the people who would freely choose to accept or reject Him. And He regardless chose to create this world rather than an alternative one, where a different set of people would choose to accept or reject the Gospel. In this way, He chose the elect before the creation of the world.

Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ. 4 For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight. In love 5 he[b] predestined us for adoption to sonship[c] through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will— 6 to the praise of his glorious grace, which he has freely given us in the One he loves.

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Yoda, I just wanted to thankyou so much for possibly one of the best explanations of this I have ever read. :)

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Free will all day every day no doubt:

Deuteronomy 30:15

See, I have set before thee this day life and good, and death and evil;

Man can "resist the Holy Spirit": Acts 6:10; 7:51-55

Without free will, many of Bible statements make no sense:

"Why do you call me Lord & don't do what I say" Lk 6:46 Why? God

willed it that way!

"Whosoever believes shall be saved" Jn 3:16 (Rather whosoever God

makes a believer)

Joshua 24:15--And if it seem evil unto you to serve the LORD, choose

you this day whom ye will serve; whether the gods which your fathers

served that were on the other side of the flood, or the gods of the

Amorites, in whose land ye dwell: but as for me and my house, we will

serve the LORD.

Deuteronomy 30:19--I call heaven and earth to record this day against

you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and acursing:

therefore choose life, that both thou and thy seed may live.

John 8:32

Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.

John 14:15 "If you love Me, keep My commandments.

John 15:7 "If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, you will ask

what you desire, and it shall be done for you

James 4:7-8

"Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee

from you. Come near to God and he will come near to you. Wash your

hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded."

"...Choose today whom you will serve" ...Joshua 24:15

"...So choose life in order that you may live."... Deuteronomy 30:19

"...Choose knowledge rather than gold"... Proverbs 8:10

John 3: 16"For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son,

that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.

Many other scriptures in the Bible plead with people to always do

God`s will, what He wants.

I doubt God predestined Adam and Eve's will to eat the apple it contradicts all of his teachings there is no reason he would want to promote sin

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I can quote a bunch of verses that are a lot more directly in support of unconditional election just as you did. Just read John 6, the latter half of it.

Funny thing: God /did/ predestine the fall to happen so that way His glory could better be displayed.

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Sorry I dont buy it all it points out is that you have the potential of eternal life it is not granted without your commitment. There is more substantial evidence supporting free will than pre-d but no offense to your beliefs its just my perspective.

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Sorry I dont buy it all it points out is that you have the potential of eternal life it is not granted without your commitment. There is more substantial evidence supporting free will than pre-d but no offense to your beliefs its just my perspective.

Romans 9: 9-18

"For this is what the promise said:® "About this time next year I will return' date=' and Sarah shall have a son." 10And not only so, but(S) also when Rebekah had conceived children by one man, our forefather Isaac, 11though they were not yet born and had done nothing either good or bad—in order that God’s purpose of election might continue, not because of works but because of(T) him who calls— 12she was told,(U) "The older will serve the younger." 13As it is written,(V) "Jacob I loved, but Esau I hated."

14What shall we say then?(W) Is there injustice on God’s part? By no means! 15For he says to Moses,(X) "I will have mercy on whom I have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I have compassion." 16So then it depends not on human will or exertion,[b'] but on God, who has mercy. 17For the Scripture says to Pharaoh,(Y) "For this very purpose I have raised you up, that I might show my power in you, and that my name might be proclaimed in all the earth." 18So then he has mercy on whomever he wills, and he hardens whomever he wills."

Ephesians 1:3-14:

" 3(E) Blessed be(F) the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing(G) in the heavenly places, 4(H) even as he(I) chose us in him(J) before the foundation of the world, that we should be(K) holy and blameless before him. In love 5(L) he predestined us for(M) adoption as sons through Jesus Christ,(N) according to the purpose of his will, 6(O) to the praise of his glorious grace, with which he has blessed us in(P) the Beloved. 7(Q) In him we have® redemption(S) through his blood,(T) the forgiveness of our trespasses,(U) according to the riches of his grace, 8which he lavished upon us, in all wisdom and insight 9(V) making known[c] to us the mystery of his will,(W) according to his purpose, which he(X) set forth in Christ 10as a plan for(Y) the fullness of time,(Z) to unite all things in him, things in heaven and things on earth.

11In him we have obtained(AA) an inheritance,(AB) having been predestined(AC) according to the purpose of him who works all things according to(AD) the counsel of his will, 12so that we who were the first to hope in Christ might be(AE) to the praise of his glory. 13In him you also, when you heard(AF) the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and believed in him,(AG) were sealed with the(AH) promised Holy Spirit, 14who is(AI) the guarantee[d] of our(AJ) inheritance until(AK) we acquire(AL) possession of it,[e](AM) to the praise of his glory"

John 6: 37-40

"37(AQ) All that(AR) the Father gives me will come to me, and(AS) whoever comes to me I will never cast out. 38For(AT) I have come down from heaven, not to do(AU) my own will but(AV) the will of him who sent me. 39And(AW) this is the will of him who sent me,(AX) that I should lose nothing of(AY) all that he has given me, but(AZ) raise it up on the last day. 40For this is the will of my Father, that everyone who(BA) looks on the Son and(BB) believes in him(BC) should have eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day.""

Romans 8:29-30

"29For those whom he(BC) foreknew he also(BD) predestined(BE) to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be(BF) the firstborn among many brothers. 30And those whom he predestined he also called, and those whom he called he also(BG) justified, and those whom he justified he also(BH) glorified."

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The quotes mentioning he will save you etc I believe he will only devote to you once you devote to him

As far as Romans 9: 9-18 I believe he has the power to intervene someone mentally if he desires to.

I will have mercy on whom I have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I have compassion." 16So then it depends not on human will or exertion,(sounds like your on my side with this one) as well as (All that(AR) the Father gives me will come to me, and(AS) whoever comes to me I will never cast out.)

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Funny thing: God /did/ predestine the fall to happen so that way His glory could better be displayed.

Lies.

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Lies.

I agree he does not seek fame or glory but the desire to be followed only if mankind is willing to do so only if they are righteous enough its ridiculous to think he himself is personally condemning people to salvation like your calling him prejudice even though he does judge he doesnt judge your destiny you make it(and he judges your devotion to him) why would he present the divine way to live life as if you already have your get into heaven free card thats like saying you dont need to read the bible or goto church or care what he has to say.

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I'm a compatibalist. Ergo, I believe in both! =D

I win.

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James, I'm a mutt also, at least to the Protestant understanding of this debate. I'm a Thomist, if you want to label me (and I can send you something about the Thomist understanding of TULIP if you're interested James. From what I can tell, your ideas match it pretty well).

The idea of Predestination did not begin with John Calvin, nor did the idea of total depravity (although we tend not to call it total depravity because we find the term misleading). It has existed in the Church since the beginning. St. Thomas argued that all things acted freely in accordance to their natures, which I think is what Jakob is talking about when he says he believes both.

Getting down to the question at hand though, I think the issue is that I don't see how you can logically believe in total depravity without also believing that God gives us grace so that we can accept Him. That seems completely contrary to the idea of total depravity to me. Then to claim it is possible for God to give us grace so that we can accept Him, but then we reject this grace. That also seems impossible because as St. Thomas of Aquinas taught "God's intention cannot fail .... Hence if God intends, while moving it, that the one whose heart he moves should attain to grace, he will infallibly attain to it, according to John 6:45, 'Everyone that has heard and learned from the Father comes to me.'"

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St. Thomas argued that all things acted freely in accordance to their natures, which I think is what Jakob is talking about when he says he believes both.

This. Another way of putting it is that human responsibility is not incongruent with the doctrines of Total Depravity and Irresistible Grace. We are really responsible for the choices we make, because we make them in accordance with our nature, which is a moral issue.

Thanks for being rational, Zabby. :)

Btw, guys, irresistible grace doesn't mean you cannot resist God at anytime, but that God can at will make His calling irresistible so that He can infallibly draw the elect at the appointed time.

And finally, if you're going to reject that God saves people for His own fame, you have to make it past one of the clearest texts in the Bible: "I am writing to you, little children, because your sins have been forgiven you for His name's sake." 1 John 2:12

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Thanks for being rational, Zabby. :)

Just because I'm Catholic doesn't mean I can't be rational and follow what Scripture says ;)

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Lies.

That's the only way the fall could have happened. God had to have ordained the fall. God's providence is so pervasive that even the fall was predestined to happen by Him. He did not cause it, but He ordained it. The fault still lies on Adam.

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Its either free will alone or both case closed on my part:)

Of course it's both. If free will did not exist, God could not justly punish us.

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