Doctrine - Predestination


13/04/2006
I always was brought up to believe that when the Bible refers to the chosen people, it’s referring to the Jewish people. But I’ve been visiting different churches lately, and I heard a comment made that God knows who is going to be saved if you will, and those are the chosen people. I’m a little confused.

I could understand why you could be confused based on people talking and preaching or teaching that kind of thing because it’s really not true. Although, there are many people who actually believe that, it’s just not true. The chosen people according to 1 Peter 2:1- 2, are those who get born again; those who receive Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior. It says, “Now we come to Him as unto a living stone which men tried and threw away but which is chosen and precious in God’s sight, we as living stones we are built into a spiritual house, a holy priesthood, a chosen generation, acceptable and pleasing to God, through Jesus Christ.” Those who put their faith in Jesus Christ, they are the chosen ones. God doesn’t choose people before they are born to say, “This one’s going to be saved and this one’s not going to be saved. He’s called all of us; we become chosen when we heed the call, when we receive Jesus Christ, whether we’re a Jew or Gentile, whether we’re an Arab, whether we never had any spiritual background at all. When you become a Christian, when you get born again, you become a part of God’s chosen people. Just being Jewish does not make you God’s chosen people, but being born again makes you part of God’s chosen people.

I believe on hundred percent that it’s the choice that we make, that there’s no predetermination on God’s part of who He’s chosen, but it’s our choice that makes us a chosen person. I’m totally convinced from the Scriptures that we make that choice. We find in the Old Testament and the New Testament. God says, “Choose this day who you will serve.” Joshua says, “Choose this day who you will serve.” Moses says in Deuteronomy, “Choose this day who you will serve.” Throughout the Scripture, Paul and Peter and Jesus himself says you have to choose to believe. God gives you the power to choose whether we will receive the gift that has been extended to us or whether we do not receive that gift. And it is a gift; it’s a free gift and it’s made available to everybody, although not everybody accepts that gift. So, yes, we’re in control over whether we become one of God’s chosen or not because it’s a choice that we have to make to either accept the free gift of salvation through Jesus Christ or to reject that free gift. I know that that’s a question that many people have had.

I know that it’s a controversial issue. Does God choose who gets saved and who doesn’t get saved? Or does God choose to offer a free gift to anyone who believes. The Bible says, “Whosoever shall believe in Him shall not perish, but have everlasting life.” Whosoever shall believe in Him. Whosoever means that could apply to anybody. But it has to be chosen by us. Does God give us the gift of repentance? Yes, that gift comes from God. Does God give us the ability to believe? Yes, all of that comes from God. But He makes that available to every man, every woman, and every child on the face of the earth. Otherwise, it would not be a free gift. Otherwise it would not be fair. Otherwise it would not be just if God made the gift of Jesus available to some people, but didn’t make the gift available to everybody. If God’s just going to choose who’s saved and who’s not saved, then why even send Jesus to the earth? Jesus becomes the focal point of all history and anybody who believes in Jesus Christ and in His death, burial and resurrection and declares the Lordship of Jesus, then that person is saved, regardless of what has ever transpired in their life, regardless of their upbringing, regardless of their background, regardless of their history. Jesus Christ changes your history when you receive Him as your Lord and Savior.


Doctrine - Predestination


16/03/2006
Is everybody’s life predestined or not?

What a great question. There is the word “predestined” in the Bible in Romans 8:29, but it does not mean that God in advance picks who’s going to be saved and who’s not going to be saved. It’s not God’s will for any to perish, according to 2 Peter 3:9. I know there may be some that think, “no, God predestines people and He picks some to be saved and some to not be saved.”

If God really did that, if that’s what God was going to do—just pick some to be saved and some not to be saved, then why would He go through the trouble of sending Jesus Christ as the gift of God? That “if any man,” Jesus said, “whosoever believes on me, shall not perish, but have everlasting life.” He didn’t say, “now some of you are destined to believe in me, and some of you are destined to not believe in me.”

So, it’s not like that at all. God sent the gift of His Son, Jesus Christ, for every man. Not every man receives that gift, but that gift is made available to every man and every woman, to every human being. Every person has the opportunity to choose. Remember it says in Deuteronomy 30. “Choose life. Choose life or death. Choose blessing or cursing. Choose prosperity or adversity.” And what about Joshua in chapter 24 where he says, “Choose this day whom you will serve, but as for me and my house, we’re going to serve the Lord.” There is a choice that we have to make.

Somebody says, “Well, it’s God who puts it in your heart to make that choice.” Well, I believe that if we go back, if we’re going to do that, then we can go back to where we’re just robots and we’re going to just respond to however God has programmed us. And that is not at all what happened. Because God didn’t predestine Adam to eat from the tree of knowledge of good and evil; He told that man, “Do not eat from this tree.” He didn’t tell him, “Don’t eat from it,” but then subtly in his mind send subliminal messages: “Eat. Eat. Eat. Eat.” No, that’s not at all what God did. God is not schizophrenic. God is not a mean, cruel God that just puts people on to this earth and they’re destined already, whether they’re going to succeed or not. You make choices. When your choices line up with the Word of God, you end up fulfilling the destiny that God has already pre-ordained to be God’s will for your life. It’s what He has ordained to be His will for you life, but He can’t make it happen without your cooperation.

I hope that helps answer your question. You choose whether you’re going to receive Jesus Christ. You choose whether you’re going to tithe. You choose whether you’re going to treat your wife right. You choose whether you’re going to submit to God or submit to your husband. You choose whether you’re going to smoke that cigarette or not. This is not stuff that God predetermines or predestines us to do. These are the choices that we make. That He’s given us the power and, thank God that He’s gracious enough to have created us with a free will. Okay. So thank God for that.

Now has He predestined you? Yes He has. He has predestined you to succeed, if your choice lines up with His will. If you choose to follow Him. Death and life are in the power of the tongue. Two roads you can travel. Road leading to death. Road leading to life. It’s up to you. It’s not up to God. He’s made His move; the next move is yours. Okay, I hope that helps answer the question. It’s a great question. It’s a controversial question, but I hope that we stirred you up a little bit on that one.