Ephesians 1 talks about predestination. Are we all predestined to come into the knowledge of Christ or are there some people who are never predestined, therefore who are unable to believe and repent? What does predestination mean in scripture?
Ephesians 1:1 - 23
ESV - 1 Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God, To the saints who are in Ephesus, and are faithful in Christ Jesus: 2 Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
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In Eph 1:1-14 Paul states that God chose those in Christ (believers) to be holy and predestined those in Christ (believers) to be adopted. It does not state that God predestined anyone to be, or not to be, a believer or to be in Christ! God also seals those in Christ (the faithful in Christ Jesus whom Paul is addressing) with the Holy Spirit as a down payment of our future inheritance of eternal life. Predestination deals with God’s omnipotence and omniscience. The word itself means to “to mark out beforehand’; to pre-establish limits and boundaries. Specifically, this word references how God set limits/boundaries/laws upon everything before creation. He set the laws of physics, placed the boundaries of the sea, determined the eternal plan by which mankind would be saved, (Prov 8:22-31, Eph 1:3-10, Eph 3:10-11, Job 38:33, Rom 8:29, etc), set the rules by which deliverance and pardon are obtained (Num 25:22-29, Jer 26:1-6, II Chron 7:14, John 3:16, Heb 10:11-18, Luke 4:14-21, Heb 9:22, Matt 5:29, Isa 45:22-25), etc. In the plan of salvation, God also predestined it to include the gentiles, not just the Jews (Eph 3:2-12, Rom 3:21-31, Rom 9:1-26, Rom 15:5-13, John 1:11-13, Isa 45:9-10, Rom 9:11-16, etc). It is this aspect of predestination that Eph 1 deals with in-depth. God elected a people for Himself, the body of Christ, both Jew and Gentile. (I Pet 2:7-10, II Pet 1:2, Rom 1:1-3, II Tim 2:1-13, etc). His calling this people is by His grace, not by any of our own works (I Pet 2:9-10, Eph 2:8-10, Rom 11:1-6). The Jews thought they alone were the 'Chosen People' of God, and were resistant to the idea of the Gentiles being brought into God's flock as well. In context, Paul is speaking here of how God pre-determined before time that both Jew and Gentiles would be brought into the kingdom of God through Christ; any who would put their hope in Christ (Eph 1:11-14). The nation of Israel was elect due to God’s own choice (Ezek 16:5-7, Deut 10:15, Isa 45:4). Israel entered the covenant with God to confirm this (Deut 29:9-15), but they still rebelled, and thought salvation was by works and not the promise (Jer 4:22). While to the Jews it seemed as if God allowing the gentiles in would be changing his mind or contrary to His promise, the offer of salvation to the gentiles had truly been God's plan from the start. Just as God had fore-determined the boundaries and subdivisions of the promised land, so He had fore-determined the purpose, plan, and promises of salvation, the structure and limits of the true church under the headship of Christ (I Pet 1:3-9, Rom 9:6-26, I Pet 2:10). In similar manner, we didn't chose the way of salvation (God did), nor did we chose our own gifts or ministries (God did). We are, however, to have faith and follow (John 15:16, John 12:25-26). As such, in Eph 1, predestination shows that Christians are the church, the body of Christ (Col 1:18, I Cor 12:12, Col 3:14-16, Eph 4:14-16). All those in Christ (those with faith) are the 'elect', those predestined to be holy, the people of God joined together under the headship of Christ (1 Peter 2:4-9). We all become part of the elect/the church through faith; and those with faith are made holy; a plan God predestined long before time, Israel, or the law. God planned this all according to His own council, purpose, and will - not according to any work or wisdom of man, before He created time. Jesus, the lamb slain from the 'foundation of the world' (Rev 13:8, John 1:1), would enter history at the proper time to die for our sins and bring all who believed into His body, the church (Gal 4:3-7, Rom 10:4, Col 1:15-23, I Pet 1:19-20, Eph 1:4, II Tim 1:8-9, John 3:16-18). Then, eternal life will be granted us (our inheritance) at the end of the ages, when all things are fulfilled in Christ and He presents the church to Himself as a radiant bride (Eph 1:9-11, Eph 5:25-33, Titus 1:1).
The biblical answer is that mankind chooses to believe, but only after the Holy Spirit effectually calls them (meaning that one cannot choose Christ without the Holy Spirit actually causing them to believe). This was the case with Lydia. Acts 16:14-15 says that the LORD opened her heart and then she believed. It doesn't say she believed and The Lord then changed (or saved) her. She was enabled to believe. John 6:44 says NO one can come to the Father unless God draws them. Same with John 6:65. But draw doesn't mean to entice or woo. It means to compel. You don't woo water from a well. You draw it out, or bring it out with a pump or bucket. It does not come on its own. It only comes if you send the bucket (aka the Holy Spirit) to bring it out, it WILL then come, no ifs, ands, or buts. The Father elects (chooses), the Spirit enables, and the Son saves (because of His work on the cross). I won't take time here to say too much more except to point you to a couple books that explain this Biblical view: "Chosen by God" by R.C. Sproul is probably the shortest and most succinct. "The Bondage of the Will" by Martin Luther and "The Death of Death in the Death of Christ" by Owens are excellent but difficult because of their depth. Norm Geissler tries to fence sit in his book "Chosen, yet Free" and it doesn't work. It boils down to whether you have a high view of Man or a high view of God. Regarding passages that say God desires "all" men to be saved, well, all doesn't always mean all. 1 Tim 2:4 doesn't mean "all people, everywhere. It means all those whom god elected. Why does it mean this? Think about it. If God didn't tarry. If He came 100 years ago, would you be saved? No, because you didn't exist. Matthew 2:3 says Herod was troubled at the news of Jesus' birth "and ALL Jerusalem with him." Do you really think every man, woman, and child were troubled? Of course not. All doesn't mean "all". Answer this question: did Jesus die for all the sins of everyone? No. If that were the case, everyone would be saved (universalism). You might say he'd died for everyone but not those who didn't believe. Is unbelief a sin? Yes it is (John 16:9). So, therefore, Jesus did NOT Die for all the sins of all people. And therefore he did not die for those who were not chosen by the Father in the first place. (John 6:37)
My answer to you is yes because the Scriptures say so. Romans 8:29 "For whom He foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the firstborn among many brethren." Romans 8:30 "Moreover whom He predestined, these He also called; whom He called, these He also justified; and whom He justified, these He also glorified." Ephesians 1:4-5 "Just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love, having predestined us to adoption as sons by Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will," Ephesians 1:11 "In Him also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestined according to the purpose of Him who works all things according to the counsel of His will,"
The doctrine of election is a complicated issue within the church. This isn't something new springing forth. This is something that has been over thought and become a theological debate. This should not be an argument for theologians to have, it should be an affection for Christians to feel. God would be just in condemning all of us to an eternal hell. This is gospel truth, yet He has done something that astounds us all. He sent himself to save us. He sent His Son to save everyone. This is where election gets confusing. How can scripture say that God sent His Son for everyone, yet only chose some. The best way I have ever heard this described is like this. Imagine the cross of Christ on a hil with a door at the base of it. Above the door there is an inscription that says "I have sent my Son so that all who believe in Him will have eteranl life". When you have been brought to this door and you enter through it by faith, as you look back at the cross you see an inscription that reads "Welcome child of God, for you have been chosen since the foundation of the world", God is sovereign and He knows the end from the beginnig, but out of His sovereingty He has willed that we can choose to follow Him. He desires a relationship where our desire is for Him. He sends His spirit to draw us to Himself and allows us to make a decision. Our decision requires the Holy Spirit to draw us still. God is sovereign, man is responsible.
Romans 8-10 are very clear passages on Predestination. Like Justin greatly commented, it has been something so many Christians have confused and as a result, they have cast it to the side. Paul describes for us how before Jacob and Esau were born, and before they had done anything right or wrong, God had already decided He would love Jacob and hate Esau. Paul goes on to tell us that God shows mercy on whomever He decides. It is my belief that the American culture / mentality have greatly harmed the Doctrines of Grace. The "American Dream" comes to mind. I am all for Capitalism and working hard from the ground up, but this should never be mixed with the gospel. Our society cannot tolerate the fact that the decision to accept Christ and God has nothing to with them. Romans chapter 8 tells that apart from Christ, we desire nothing, but the things of the Flesh. This chapter is clear. We can't obey God and we can't please God. Furthermore, when we are dead in our sins, the thought of pleasing God is nowhere in our minds. The Doctrines of Grace are so beautiful and so magnificent, but we miss out on it, because we refuse to believe that God can and would have control over our eternal fate; that it is completely and utterly His choice. Well God looked down through the corridor of time and said, because I see that Joe Smoe will follow me, I will choose him. This simply is not the case. When God looked through the corridor of time, He saw us in our filthy and disgusting sins, dead and hopeless. All so God might forever receive the Glory, He chose some to belong to Him, and chose to pass over others. I would like to make one more note. Armenians hold the belief that Christ died for everyone and for no one in particular. But how could Christ receive the Glory due to His name by having paid for the sins of people who have or will perish in Hell? And how could Christ have finished His work and provided atonement on the cross if His blood was shed for those who are or will perish? He paid our debts and He provided atonement. I believe "the joy that was set before Him" was those whom God had already been given to His Son. John 10 talks about this also. There is a great comfort in knowing that God has His hands on those that belong to Him. Those that He has begun the good work in, He will complete it all for His Glory.
Man's will is not neutral. The Armenian view of "free will" seems to suggest that man's will is evil yet somehow in a state of suspension; that somewhere along the way of life, a person is able to choose or reject Christ. This seems to swing on the "emotion" of "interest". However, the Bible tells us that the things we do come out of the desire of our heart and we know that since the fall, man's desire is evil. Our very core is totally corrupted and unable to come to Christ on our own. The fountain feeding the heart is evil and if we compare man to a tree we can say that tree cannot rise above the fountain which feeds it. Bottom line is that man is not a sinner because he chooses to sin. Man is a sinner because he IS a sinner; we are born evil. We are in total bondage to sin and the only way to change is for God to make the change in us. He, utilizing His Sovereign will, must change our will. We must be born again "before" being able to choose God. God must change the "will" or "desire" of the person. So, man's will is not his hope. Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ is our only hope. We must be renewed in the entirety of our character to be able to choose Him. We require a new heart in order to have faith, repent, and trust in Christ. The only way to produce good fruit is to be grounded in the true Fountain of Life; which is Christ Jesus. God is the only one capable of doing that. Our will cannot be transplanted by our own power. Our character is revealed by our will and outside of Christ it is entirely evil. So, it can only exercise the liberty to be what it already is. God must act on the behalf of the sinner by creating a clean heart and renew a right spirit within the person. All the glory for this renewal goes to God and that is why I accept the Calvinistic/Augustine/Reformed view. Our Salvation belongs to Him alone!
God is Alpha and Omega, He knows everything that ever was, is and will be. He predestined His body of believers before the Earth was even formed. He knows the Jews and Gentiles whom will be His Church Body, given to Him by God. It is in Christ that we find out who we are and once you have heard the Truth, we believe the message of Salvation. We (His Church Body, the believers and followers of Christ) are His forever. All believers will be Raptured before the Tribulation period, taken to Heaven and will accompany Jesus Christ as He steps (as He said He would) on the Mount of Olives (His second coming) to rule the world for 1000 years before the Great White Throne Judgement. Jesus Christ will rule the World from Jerusalem.
John 14:6, John 3:16-17, John 3:3, John 5:24, Romans 10:8-13, and the result in Ephesians 2:8-9. How can there possibly be more than one answer to this Truth? God saves us by His Amazing Grace through faith, the GIFT, not based upon any effort on our part...... and even the faith to believe comes from Him through the ministry of the Holy Spirit. God does not select Group A to be saved and Group B to be condemned. All have sinned and fallen short of His glory. Anyone who confesses with his mouth the Lord Jesus and believes in His heart that God has saved Him from the dead, is saved. God did not pre-program robots to make that profession of faith. God does not prevent SOME from making that profession. ONLY those who fail to receive Jesus as Savior, or in the case of the Jews, those who failed to receive Him as Messiah, are eternally condemned. Failure is not imposed in advance. The qualifier for salvation is acceptance of Jesus, as straight-forward as in Romans 10:8-13. Did Jesus die for all the sins of everyone? Yes. The Holy Spirit informs and reminds each of us of God's free gift. Closure is when one accepts that incredible gift of eternity with Him. Those who do not remain lost forever.
Eph.1:1 tells us who is predestined. V1...To the saints who are in Ephesus, and are faithful in Christ Jesus: V.5 he predestined us for adoption through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will... The context of the letter to Ephesians qualifies who are predestined to have redemption and forgiveness. Paul is not writing here in general terms. He's writing specifically to the church in Ephesus. This does not mean it is limited to them,but neither does it say it applies to others. Romans 8 enlarges the picture and others too. The Greek word hagios is, in the AV, translated saint/s 61 times and holy 161 times Robert Jennings
Simple...Yes God is in Control and will call His Chosen/Elect people to Himself. Some predestined to eternal life and some to hell...sorry, but this IS the Word of God! Buckle up! Ephesians 2 Made Alive in Christ 1 As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins, 2 in which you used to live when you followed the ways of this world and of the ruler of the kingdom of the air, the spirit who is now at work in those who are disobedient. 3 All of us also lived among them at one time, gratifying the cravings of our flesh[a] and following its desires and thoughts. Like the rest, we were by nature deserving of wrath. 4 But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, 5 made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved. (oh…does this means God’s grace or our “choice”?) 6 And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus, 7 in order that in the coming ages he might show the incomparable riches of his grace, expressed in his kindness to us in Christ Jesus. 8 For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves (must not be our choice!), it is the gift of God (let this sink in!)— 9 not by works, so that no one can boast. 10 For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance (hmmmm…maybe predesinted?)for us to do. Jew and Gentile Reconciled Through Christ 11 Therefore, remember that formerly you who are Gentiles by birth and called “uncircumcised” by those who call themselves “the circumcision” (which is done in the body by human hands)— 12 remember that at that time you were separate from Christ, excluded from citizenship in Israel and foreigners to the covenants of the promise, without hope and without God in the world. 13 But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far away have been brought near by the blood of Christ. 14 For he himself is our peace, who has made the two groups one and has destroyed the barrier, the dividing wall of hostility, 15 by setting aside in his flesh the law with its commands and regulations. His purpose was to create in himself one new humanity out of the two, thus making peace, 16 and in one body to reconcile both of them to God through the cross, by which he put to death their hostility. 17 He came and preached peace to you who were far away and peace to those who were near. 18 For through him we both have access to the Father by one Spirit. 19 Consequently, you are no longer foreigners and strangers, but fellow citizens with God’s people and also members of his household, 20 built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the chief cornerstone. 21 In him the whole building is joined together and rises to become a holy temple in the Lord. 22 And in him you too are being built together to become a dwelling in which God lives by his Spirit. Ephesians 1 1 Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God, (did Paul choose to become an Apostle or was it the will of God?) To God’s holy people in Ephesus,[a] the faithful in Christ Jesus:(OK....is this scripture ONLY to God's people in Ephesus?-for the people who try to say "use this verse in context" or is this and the rest of Scripture meant for ALL Believers?) 2 Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Praise for Spiritual Blessings in Christ 3 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 (clearly an act of God, NOT our choice...you can TRY to explain Websters definition of predestination and foreknowledge ALL day long, BUT the Word of God is very clear.) 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. 7 In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace 8 that he lavished on us. With all wisdom and understanding, 9 he[d] made known to us the mystery of his will according to his good pleasure, which he purposed in Christ, 10 to be put into effect when the times reach their fulfillment—to bring unity to all things in heaven and on earth under Christ. 11 In him we were also chosen,(funny how so many people focus on the word predestination and overlook the fact that God has chosen an elect people) [e] having been predestined according to the plan of him who works out everything in conformity with the purpose of his will (again...is it our will or His will?), 12 in order that we, who were the first to put our hope in Christ, might be for the praise of his glory. 13 And you also were included in Christ when you heard the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation. When you believed, you were marked in him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit, 14 who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God’s possession—to the praise of his glory. Thanksgiving and Prayer 15 For this reason, ever since I heard about your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love for all God’s people, 16 I have not stopped giving thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers. 17 I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit[f] of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know him better. 18 I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people, 19 and his incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is the same as the mighty strength 20 he exerted when he raised Christ from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms, 21 far above all rule and authority, power and dominion, and every name that is invoked, not only in the present age but also in the one to come. 22 And God placed all things under his feet and appointed him to be head over everything for the church, 23 which is his body, the fullness of him who fills everything in every way. Now…how about the entire chapter of Romans 9 (in Context!)- Romans 9 Paul’s Anguish Over Israel 1 I speak the truth in Christ—I am not lying, my conscience confirms it through the Holy Spirit— 2 I have great sorrow and unceasing anguish in my heart. 3 For I could wish that I myself were cursed and cut off from Christ for the sake of my people, those of my own race, 4 the people of Israel. Theirs is the adoption to sonship; theirs the divine glory, the covenants, the receiving of the law, the temple worship and the promises. 5 Theirs are the patriarchs, and from them is traced the human ancestry of the Messiah, who is God over all, forever praised![a] Amen. God’s Sovereign Choice 6 It is not as though God’s word had failed. For not all who are descended from Israel are Israel. 7 Nor because they are his descendants are they all Abraham’s children. On the contrary, “It is through Isaac that your offspring will be reckoned.”[b] 8 In other words, it is not the children by physical descent who are God’s children, but it is the children of the promise who are regarded as Abraham’s offspring. 9 For this was how the promise was stated: “At the appointed time I will return, and Sarah will have a son.”[c] 10 Not only that, but Rebekah’s children were conceived at the same time by our father Isaac. 11 Yet, before the twins were born or had done anything good or bad—in order that God’s purpose in election (yes...it says God's election) might stand: 12 not by works but by him who calls—she was told, “The older will serve the younger.”[d] 13 Just as it is written: “Jacob I loved, but Esau I hated.”[e] (hhhmmmm....so did Esau decide and choose to reject God in the whom?) 14 What then shall we say? Is God unjust? Not at all! 15 For he says to Moses, “I will have mercy on whom I have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I have compassion.”[f] 16 It does not, therefore, depend on human desire or effort, but on God’s mercy. 17 For Scripture says to Pharaoh: “I raised you up for this very purpose, that I might display my power in you and that my name might be proclaimed in all the earth.”[g] 18 Therefore God has mercy on whom he wants to have mercy, and he hardens whom he wants to harden. (for the people who say God wants ALL men to be saved....how do you explain this?....sorry...God's sovereign choice...ALL means ALL that He has called and chosen). 19 One of you will say to me: “Then why does God still blame us? For who is able to resist his will?” 20 But who are you, a human being, to talk back to God? “Shall what is formed say to the one who formed it, ‘Why did you make me like this?’”[h] 21 Does not the potter have the right to make out of the same lump of clay some pottery for special purposes and some for common use? (God already knew some people will feel it is "not fair and heartless" for God to choose certain people....and here is the TRUTH-God has chosen His elect!) 22 What if God, although choosing to show his wrath and make his power known, bore with great patience the objects of his wrath—prepared for destruction? 23 What if he did this to make the riches of his glory known to the objects of his mercy, whom he prepared in advance for glory— 24 even us, whom he also called, not only from the Jews but also from the Gentiles?..... Ok…a few more various verses on predestination, foreknowledge and God Choosing- 1. this Man, delivered up by the predetermined plan and foreknowledge of God, you nailed to a cross by the hands of godless men and put Him to death. (Acts 2:23) 2. This was in accordance with the eternal purpose which He carried out in Christ Jesus our Lord, (Ephesians 3:11) but we speak God's wisdom in a mystery, the hidden wisdom, which God predestined before the ages to our glory; the wisdom which none of the rulers of this age has understood; for if they had understood it, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory; (1 Corinthians 2:7-8) but with precious blood, as of a lamb unblemished and spotless, the blood of Christ. For He was foreknown before the foundation of the world, but has appeared in these last times for the sake of you. (1 Peter 1:19-20) the one who practices sin is of the devil; for the devil has sinned from the beginning. The Son of God appeared for this purpose, that He might destroy the works of the devil. (1 John 3:8) 3. So David said to Michal, "It was before the LORD, who chose me above your father and above all his house, to appoint me ruler over the people of the LORD, over Israel; therefore I will celebrate before the LORD. (2 Samuel 6:21) 'Since the day that I brought My people Israel from Egypt, I did not choose a city out of all the tribes of Israel in which to build a house that My name might be there, but I chose David to be over My people Israel.' (1 Kings 8:16) 'Nevertheless I will not take the whole kingdom out of his hand, but I will make him ruler all the days of his life, for the sake of My servant David whom I chose, who observed My commandments and My statutes; (1 Kings 11:34) "Yet, the LORD, the God of Israel, chose me from all the house of my father to be king over Israel forever. For He has chosen Judah to be a leader; and in the house of Judah, my father's house, and among the sons of my father He took pleasure in me to make me king over all Israel. (1 Chronicles 28:4) He also chose David His servant, And took him from the sheepfolds; (Psalm 78:70) 4. Then David said, "No one is to carry the ark of God but the Levites; for the LORD chose them to carry the ark of God, and to minister to Him forever." (1 Chronicles 15:2) 5. "Thou art the LORD God, Who chose Abram And brought him out from Ur of the Chaldees, And gave him the name Abraham. (Nehemiah 9:7) 6. But [God] chose the tribe of Judah, Mount Zion which He loved. (Psalm 78:68) 7. Thayer's Greek Definition: eklektos - (Strong's G1588) 1. picked out, chosen a. chosen by God 1. to obtain salvation through Christ a. Christians are called “chosen or elect” of God 2. the Messiah in called “elect”, as appointed by God to the most exalted office conceivable 3. choice, select, i.e. the best of its kind or class, excellence preeminent: applied to certain individual Christians Part of Speech: adjective A Related Word by Thayer’s/Strong’s Number: from G1586 Citing in TDNT: 4:181, 505 8. "And unless those days had been cut short, no life would have been saved; but for the sake of the elect those days shall be cut short. (Matthew 24:22) "For false Christs and false prophets will arise and will show great signs and wonders, so as to mislead, if possible, even the elect. (Matthew 24:24) "And He will send forth His angels with A GREAT TRUMPET and THEY WILL GATHER TOGETHER His elect from the four winds, from one end of the sky to the other. (Matthew 24:31) "And unless the Lord had shortened those days, no life would have been saved; but for the sake of the elect whom He chose, He shortened the days. (Mark 13:20) for false Christs and false prophets will arise, and will show signs and wonders, in order, if possible, to lead the elect astray. (Mark 13:22) "And then He will send forth the angels, and will gather together His elect from the four winds, from the farthest end of the earth, to the farthest end of heaven. (Mark 13:27) now shall not God bring about justice for His elect, who cry to Him day and night, and will He delay long over them? (Luke 18:7) 9. Jesus answered them, "Did I Myself not choose you, the twelve, and yet one of you is a devil?" (John 6:70) "You did not choose Me, but I chose you, and appointed you, that you should go and bear fruit, and that your fruit should remain, that whatever you ask of the Father in My name, He may give to you. (John 15:16) 10. Who will bring a charge against God's elect? God is the one who justifies; (Romans 8:33) 11. just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before Him. In love He predestined us to adoption as sons through Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the kind intention of His will, (Ephesians 1:4-5) Therefore do not be ashamed of the testimony of our Lord, or of me His prisoner; but join with me in suffering for the gospel according to the power of God, who has saved us, and called us with a holy calling, not according to our works, but according to His own purpose and grace which was granted us in Christ Jesus from all eternity, (2 Timothy 1:8-9) 12. And all who dwell on the earth will worship him [the beast], everyone whose name has not been written from the foundation of the world in the book of life of the Lamb who has been slain. (Revelation 13:8) "The beast that you saw was and is not, and is about to come up out of the abyss and to go to destruction. And those who dwell on the earth will wonder, whose name has not been written in the book of life from the foundation of the world, when they see the beast, that he was and is not and will come. (Revelation 17:8) 13. For whom He foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the first-born among many brethren; and whom He predestined, these He also called; and whom He called, these He also justified; and whom He justified, these He also glorified. (Romans 8:29-30) also we have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to His purpose who works all things after the counsel of His will, (Ephesians 1:11) 14. For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them. (Ephesians 2:10) 15. 'But arise [Paul], and stand on your feet; for this purpose I have appeared to you, to appoint you a minister and a witness not only to the things which you have seen, but also to the things in which I will appear to you;' (Acts 26:16) 16. Listen, my beloved brethren: did not God choose the poor of this world to be rich in faith and heirs of the kingdom which He promised to those who love Him? (James 2:5) 17. The LORD has made everything for its own purpose, Even the wicked for the day of evil. (Proverbs 16:4) 18. For the Scripture says to Pharaoh, "FOR THIS VERY PURPOSE I RAISED YOU UP, TO DEMONSTRATE MY POWER IN YOU, AND THAT MY NAME MIGHT BE PROCLAIMED THROUGHOUT THE WHOLE EARTH." (Romans 9:17) 19. for though the twins were not yet born, and had not done anything good or bad, in order that God's purpose according to His choice might stand, not because of works, but because of Him who calls, it was said to her, "THE OLDER WILL SERVE THE YOUNGER." Just as it is written, "JACOB I LOVED, BUT ESAU I HATED." (Romans 9:11-13) 20. For He says to Moses, "I WILL HAVE MERCY ON WHOM I HAVE MERCY, AND I WILL HAVE COMPASSION ON WHOM I HAVE COMPASSION." So then it does not depend on the man who wills or the man who runs, but on God who has mercy. (Romans 9:15-16) 21. "For God has put it in their hearts to execute His purpose by having a common purpose, and by giving their kingdom to the beast, until the words of God should be fulfilled. (Revelation 17:17) 22. Jesus answered them, "Did I Myself not choose you, the twelve, and yet one of you is a devil?" (John 6:70) 23. "For truly in this city there were gathered together against Thy holy servant Jesus, whom Thou didst anoint, both Herod and Pontius Pilate, along with the Gentiles and the peoples of Israel, to do whatever Thy hand and Thy purpose predestined to occur. (Acts 4:27-28) 24. Who is the man who fears the LORD? He will instruct him in the way he should choose. (Psalm 25:12) Yes...GOD instructs us in the way we "choose". AMEN!
Each time I've read commentary on this verse, the emphasis has been improperly placed on a personal pronoun "me, or "us". God has predestined "us", or by extension, "me" to be in Christ before the foundation of the world...[Ephesians 1.4]. The idea that, of all the people in the world, God personally chose "me" to be in his kingdom. We should take the spot light off of "me" and place the emphasis where it belongs, "in Christ". God has predestined us to be "in Christ". Before the foundations of the world were set into place, God predestined, foreordained, that those who would accept his invitation to forgiveness and relationship would do so "in Christ". With exceptions, those times when God supernaturally intervenes to impose his will, God has empowered each, by his grace, to humbly repent of their sin and accept his offer of forgiveness "in Christ". "Come, you who are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world [Matthew 25.34]. It is only pride, willful blindness, and determined self will that prevents anyone from submitting to God's invitation to repentance, forgiveness and relationship.
What Is the Meaning of the Word “Predestination” in Romans 8:29? Question: How do you explain “predestinate” in Romans 8:29? “For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren.” (Romans 8:29). Answer: The statement is heard many times that, “You cannot reconcile the sovereignty of God and the free will of man.” This is not true—one can understand both. The confusion exists when one does not property understand the meaning of foreknowledge and predestination. Foreknowledge is an attribute of God's omniscience. Primarily, foreknowledge has to do with persons and places, and predestination is centered in God's purposes. Foreknowledge contains one element, that is, knowing what is going to happen before it takes place. In relation to people and places, it does not contain the element of bringing it to pass or making it happen. Predestination, on the other hand, is different from foreknowledge in that it contains two elements: One is the prediction (His omniscience), and the other is the act of God (His omnipotence) to bring it to pass. The confusion begins when one inserts meanings into a word which it does not contain. Remember, keep these two words separated as to their meaning. Foreknowledge has one element, that of foreknowing what is going to happen. Do not add any other meanings to this word, it contains one element only! Predestination has two elements; one is predicting, the other is fulfilling. Again, predestination is related to God's purposes, foreknowledge is related to persons and places. In Verse 29 we are told: “For whom he (Christ) did foreknow...” This simply states that Christ knew, ahead of time, every person who would trust Him as their Savior. The word carries no other element which would impede the free will of a person to make his, or her, own choice. Every Christian who will be saved is foreknown by God. We also see that every Christian is going to be the recipient of what God is going to predestinate. “For whom he did foreknow (every Christian) He also did predestinate....” He foreknew every person who would be saved. His purpose is seen in predestination, as we are predestinated to what? “...To be conformed to the image of his son,...” When will we be conformed to the image of God's Son? At the Rapture, of course! In Philippians 3:20,21 we are told: “For our conversation (citizenship) is in heaven; from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ. (20) Who shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto his glorious body.” (21) This is being “conformed to the image of His Son.” This is also what is meant by Ephesians 1:12, “to the praise of his glory.” In John 3:2 we read: “Beloved, now are we the sons (Greek, TEKNON, “children”) of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear (at the Rapture) WE SHALL BE LIKE HIM; for we shall see him as he is.” Predestination becomes very clear if we do three things: One, take exactly what the Scripture says and believe it. Two, know the difference between foreknowledge and predestination; and, Three add no other elements of meaning to them. Foreknowledge has one element while predestination has two. In summary: Romans 8:29 teaches the following according to predestination: WHO: Only the saved are predestinated, never the lost to be saved. WHAT: Christians are predestinated at some future time to “be conformed to the image of his Son.” WHEN: At the Rapture. Philippians 3:20,21, 1 John 3:2 Those who claim that God predestinated some to be saved while letting the others go to Hell, are accusing God of being a liar. As we look at the Word of God, may we let the Lord defend Himself against these false teachers. In John 3:16 God says He “loved THE WORLD.” In 2nd Peter 3:9, the Lord says He is, “not willing that any should perish; but that all should come to repentance.” (i.e., Greek, metanoia; “a change of mind.”) Therefore, God's word makes the predestinationalists out to be liars; but, not the Lord! Hebrews 6:18 says it is “impossible for God to lie,...” Remember, the middle verse of the Bible is Psalm 118:8, “It is better to trust in the Lord than to put confidence in man.” SOURCE: Dr. Max D. Younce, I'M SO GLAD YOU ASKED, Volume 2, pg. 61-63; ISBN-13-978-0-9815225-8-6; Morris Publishing. The Bible plainly teaches that Christians are predestinated to be conformed to the “image” of Christ. This is NOT being chosen for salvation. God NEVER chooses who will be saved, or who won't. The Bible plainly says that God in His foreknowledge knew who would be saved, and then God predestinates them to be conformed into the image of Jesus Christ. What a precious truth to know that God wants what's best for each of His children!
God not only knew who would say yes to salvation, but according to ephes. 2::10 the the word states that we are His workmanship created in christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do. The word workmanship(poema) in greek is translated handiwork, fingerwork, poem, artwork. Can you imagine going into an art gallery, & saying to the inkeeper, " your art collection on the floor; paintings that have a value between 10 - 200,000 dollars is sooo beautiful " then He says, " come into my personal collection. Let me show you what you couldn't even buy for 100 million dollars", then he shows you his precious children. What a God we have. We will praise Him for all eternity for all His love.
"Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, to the saints which are at Ephesus, and to the faithful in Christ Jesus:" (Ephesians 1:1) Although addressed to the saints at Ephesus Paul also includes "and to the faithful in Christ Jesus." Referring back to his introduction, Paul states the Father "hath blessed us" which would include all who are truly born again, truly saved (v. 3). Ephesians has nothing to do with church order as was the case in the Corinthian letters but speaks of the church as the body of Christ (Ephesians 1:22-23.) which would make this applicable to all true believers of the church age. The verses in question (and others) state the exalted position or standing of the believer in Christ and in His body, the Church. In most all of Paul’s letters the first chapters contain the doctrinal principles followed with practical application in the latter. Ephesians is case in point and should be especially endearing to the born again believer knowing that God the Father has blessed us with ALL spiritual blessings in the heavens, in Christ. “According as 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 1:4) We need to pay close attention to the pronouns. Paul states that “he” (God) has chosen “us” (believers) in “him” (Christ) before the foundation of the world. I personally see no need to define the word, “chosen” but for sake of clarity the KJV translates the Greek “eklegomai” as: choose, choose out, make choice. Outline of Biblical usage is: 1. to pick out, choose, to pick or choose out for one's self A. choosing one out of many, i.e. Jesus choosing his disciples B. choosing one for an office C. of God choosing whom he judged fit to receive his favours and separated from the rest of mankind to be peculiarly his own and to be attended continually by his gracious oversight i. i.e. the Israelites D. of God the Father choosing Christians, as those whom he set apart from the irreligious multitude as dear unto himself, and whom he has rendered, through faith in Christ, citizens in the Messianic kingdom: (James 2:5) so that the ground of the choice lies in Christ and his merits only. Clearly, the act of choice, having chosen or to choose is deliberate and not dependent upon outside influence. God simply chose. “Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will,” (Ephesians 1:5) The Greek word for “having predestinated” is proorizō translated by Strong’s in the KJV as: predestinate, determine before, ordain. The Father predestined those born again for adoption as children by and through Christ for himself. The Father did this for His own purpose, pleasure, satisfaction, because He wanted to. The first New Testament mention of the new birth, being born again and becoming a son of God is recorded in John 1:12-13 “But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name: Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.” Being born a son of God, born again has nothing to do with lineage, blood sacrifice, not of human capacity or volition. The Lord covered it as he taught His disciples Christ stating: “Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain: that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you.” (John 15:16) The KJV translates the Greek (menō) as: abide, tarry, dwell, continue, endure.
Paul says, “there is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God. Romans 3:11 Man does have a freewill and he is not saved against his will, but he is made willing by the operation of the Holy Ghost. It is a grace which he does not wish to resist enters, disarms him, making him a new creature and he is saved. Without the operation of the Holy Spirit, man’s freewill - “will” - naturally not chose God. “For he saith to Moses, I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion. So then [it is] not of him that (willeth), nor of him that runneth, (but of God that sheweth mercy)”. Romans 9:11 “But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God, who were born, not of blood (nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man), [but of God]. John 1:12-13 “Looking unto Jesus the (author) and (finisher) of [our] faith; Hebrews 12:2 Predestination, Election, God’s sovereign choice goes against man’s nature and will. Man’s desire is toward self and his determination is to seek his own pleasure not God’s. “For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate [to be] conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren. Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified. Romans 8:29 "Whom he foreknew, he also predestined" means that God's appointment of the destiny of his people is based on his prior election, and this election is not based on any foreseen faith that we could produce by some power of self-determination. The plan of redemption was never conceived to include the saving power of human self-determination. Therefore, even if God did base his predestination on faith which he foresaw, it was a faith which he himself intended to create. So the whole motive for the idea of foreknown faith collapses. It still leaves us with the freedom and right of God to elect or choose whom he will call effectually into faith. For God to predestine someone on the basis of faith which he himself creates is the same as basing predestination on the basis of election. Charles Spurgeon: “When I was coming to Christ, I thought I was doing it all myself, and though I sought the Lord earnestly, I had no idea the Lord was seeking me. I do not think the young convert is at first aware of this. I can recall the very day and hour when first I received those truths in my own soul - when they were as John Bunyan says, burnt into my heart as with a hot iron; and I can recollect how I felt that I had grown all of a sudden from a babe into a man - that I had made progress in scriptural knowledge, through having found, once for all, the clue to the truth of God... I saw that God was at the bottom of it all, and that He was the Author of my faith, and so the whole doctrine of grace opened up to me, and from that doctrine I have not departed to this day, and I desire to make this my constant confession, I ascribe my change wholly to God.” (Autobiography: 1, The Early Years, Banner of Truth, p. 164-165)
1. Romans 8:29 states that predestination is based upon God's foreknowledge. It is not God selecting who He wants saved and who He doesn't want saved. He wants all saved, but God knows the end from the beginning. 2. Predestination is more about the method and goal of salvation than about who will be saved. Salvation is "in Christ" and the goal is for us to be "that we should be holy and without blame before him in love," (Ephesians 1-3) and "For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son", i.e. to be like Christ, Romans 8:29; 2Corinthians 3:18. Christ died for all, not some. God wants all to be saved, not some. But He knows them that are His and who will respond to His call.
God in His fore knowledge, knows who is going to accept Him as their savior. There is no time with God. All of those that accept Him as their savior are chosen. We enter in by the door of faith, but when we go in and look at the other side of the door, it says, you have not chosen me, but I have chosen you. In John 6:37-40 it plainly states, that all that come to Him by faith alone, are saved, and He has never lost one. So all that have accepted Jesus payment for all our sin, are saved and have eternal life given to us through the spirit that is joined to our spirit to make us alive together with Christ. We are born again through the spirit when we accept Christ as our only savior without anything from us. Not by anything we do or do not do, our works, but by His grace He saved us. We did nothing for it and so have nothing to boast in but the cross. We are given eternal life as a free gift because we have accepted Jesus as our only way of salvation, not or works. God can not accept our works, only His work. Faith in Jesus finished work on the cross is what saved us. But since we believed it and are saved, we are chosen. God does by His own purpose and plan does chose some like Saul, who was persecuting the church as a Pharisee, to become Paul the apostle. But Jesus died for the sins of the whole world, so that any one who comes to Him by faith alone will be saved. John 3:16 Says, For God so loved the world, (us) that He gave His only Son, (Jesus,) that whosoever, (anybody) that believes on Him, will not perish, (die spiritually) but have everlasting life. All who have put there faith in Christ alone without works, are given eternal life through the indwelling spirit given to us when we first believed. Since we are now justified before God by our accepting Him as our only savior, we are chosen. It is like salvation and eternal life, they both mean the same thing. It means we can no longer go to hell because all of our sins have been paid for. We have become saints by faith alone in Jesus. All who have accepted Jesus as their savior, have been given His righteousness to us which is the only righteousness God will accept. We are made complete in Him by faith alone. All Christians are saints. All Christians have eternal life now. All those that have put their faith in Jesus, are chosen, and have eternal life. Ephesians 2:8-9 Salvation is a free gift. We can do nothing for it. We can only accept it as a free gift. We can not add our works to His grace. Our works, (what we do) have nothing to do with salvation which is all grace. Since we are saved by grace, all that come to Jesus are chosen and given eternal life. Predestine means to mark out before hand. That is more inclusive than election. Election are those specially chosen by God. I would put Paul in that group. Noah, Abraham, and Moses would also be in that group. We are all the sons of Abraham who are of the household of faith. Galatians 3:7-9 We are counted righteous by faith alone the same way Abraham was. Romans 4:1-8
While there is likely a better word that could have been used in translation, the best Ive found is “Foreknowledge”. God knows the end fom the beginning, He knew us before we were even formed in the womb and He also knew who would accept and who would deny His precious offer of salvation. So by His “foreknowledge” He predestined.....”. As ALL have been offered the eternal gift of salvation and His Holy Word states that He would have none perish - its the only thing that has helped me and I hope it helps you to understand better also. God bless and keep looking up. Maranatha
God knew from creation those who would make heaven and those who would not. Imagine if God would come out to say "you, you, and you will make heaven but you, you and you will not make it, Mankind would say "this is an unjust God" So He said "Now, everybody. unto your mark, set, GO. Since our God is a just God, He made a level playing ground for every soul to run the race. Definitely the outcome of the race will not be different from what He knew from the beginning . God, by this arrangement, will justify Himself before all mankind.
Psa 139:16 NLT - You saw me before I was born. Every day of my life was recorded in your book. Every moment was laid out BEFORE a single day had passed. I believe my Lord has planned everything about me. And I am sooo glad he has, cause if left up to me I would surely mess it up. As did the Jews when it was up to them to save themselves under the Old Testament. He is the one that gives me the desire and the ability to do his pleasing will. Without the indwelling HS I would not want or be able to do it... Phl 2:13 NLT - For God is working in you, GIVING you the DESIRE and the POWER to do what pleases him. And although I am no where as perfect as Jesus is perfect, I know that the Lord WILL make me perfectly sanctified as his Word tells us... Phl 1:6 NLT - And I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue his work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns. I may not know everything God knows... 1Cr 13:12 NKJV - For now we see in a mirror, dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part, but then I shall know just as I also am known. But I do know at least ONE thing. That I am to LOVE others as Jesus has loved me...and he loved us to the point of giving up his life for us... Jhn 13:34 NKJV - "A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another. What matters to me is that WE ARE saved whether we are predestined to be saved or not... And regardless of how anyone thinks they were saved, when they tell me they are saved I take them at their word. Unless and/or until their actions betray them. Let's LOVE each other as Jesus loved us and fulfill the will of God...
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