The Westboro “Baptist” Church Lie – Calvinism’s True Face: Pt. 5

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By the very nature of what must be done, the following will be somewhat tedious. However, it is utterly necessary to establish certain facts concerning the Calvinist idea of “election” and whether that idea and concept is Scripturally correct.

Here now, we are called to the word “election” and its usage in verse 11 of Romans, chapter 9. The word “election” is a frequently misused and misunderstood word that is a favorite of those holding Calvinist/Reformed doctrine. This word is used as supposed “proof” that the LORD God predetermined who would be saved, and who would be passed by and thus consigned to an eternity in Hell. However, for it to be proof, it must be proved by Scripture. In sum, this means that we must find other Scriptures that solidly support the contention that “election,” as it is used in verse 11 does indeed mean, or lends support to meaning, that a predetermination was made as to who would be saved, and who would not. Hence, a criterion, a standard for the LORD God choosing who would, and would not be saved.

The word “election” does not get much usage in Scripture. There are only about six instances of the word, and the underlying Greek word is found seven times as it is translated as “chosen” once. Thus, to be certain of the meaning of “election” as used in Romans, chapter 9, verse 11, we will have to examine the usage of the word “chosen.”

The word “election” appears in the following verses:

(For the children being not yet born, neither having done any good or evil, that the purpose of God according to election might stand, not of works, but of him that calleth;) (Romans 9:11)

Even so then at this present time also there is a remnant according to the election of grace. (Romans 11:5)

What then? Israel hath not obtained that which he seeketh for; but the election hath obtained it, and the rest were blinded (Romans 11:7)

As concerning the gospel, they are enemies for your sakes: but as touching the election, they are beloved for the fathers’ sakes. (Romans 11:28)

Knowing, brethren beloved, your election of God. (I Thessalonians 1:4)

Wherefore the rather, brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure: for if ye do these things, ye shall never fall: (II Peter 1:10)

And, where the underlying Greek word is translated “chosen” is in Acts:

But the Lord said unto him, Go thy way: for he is a chosen vessel unto me, to bear my name before the Gentiles, and kings, and the children of Israel: (Acts 9:15)

Since Romans 9:11, I Thessalonians 1:4, and II Peter 1:10 plainly do not provide any sort of criteria or explanation of “election” and why certain persons were “elected” to salvation, we must concentrate on Romans, chapter 11 as verse five plainly states that the election is “of grace” and then proceeds to explain in verse six that grace and works are mutually exclusive, and cannot be mixed in any way, shape, form or fashion. We then arrive at verse seven with the question:

“What then?”

This plainly indicates that a conclusion is drawn concerning Israel and who in Israel was saved, and who was not. To get an actual understanding of the conclusion drawn, it is essential to quote verse eight as well:

What then? Israel hath not obtained that which he seeketh for; but the election hath obtained it, and the rest were blinded (According as it is written, God hath given them the spirit of slumber, eyes that they should not see, and ears that they should not hear;) unto this day. (Romans 11:7-8)

Now we must ascertain why certain ones were given to be blinded, and others not, and how this fits with the election of grace. To go forward we must resolve how it is that some found grace in the eyes of the LORD, and others did not. For that we must go to Isaiah, chapter 29 to the passage that states:

For the LORD hath poured out upon you the spirit of deep sleep, and hath closed your eyes: the prophets and your rulers, the seers hath he covered. (Isaiah 29:10)

and again in Isaiah, chapter 6:

And he said, Go, and tell this people, Hear ye indeed, but understand not; and see ye indeed, but perceive not. Make the heart of this people fat, and make their ears heavy, and shut their eyes; lest they see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and understand with their heart, and convert, and be healed. (Isaiah 6:9-10)

However, in neither of these cases does the specific quoted verses tell us anything about why this was done. We must look at the passage in Isaiah, chapter 29 to see a reason as the rest of Isaiah, chapter 6 only tells us the extent of the LORD’s judgement on Israel.

Stay yourselves, and wonder; cry ye out, and cry: they are drunken, but not with wine; they stagger, but not with strong drink. For the LORD hath poured out upon you the spirit of deep sleep, and hath closed your eyes: the prophets and your rulers, the seers hath he covered. And the vision of all is become unto you as the words of a book that is sealed, which men deliver to one that is learned, saying, Read this, I pray thee: and he saith, I cannot; for it is sealed: And the book is delivered to him that is not learned, saying, Read this, I pray thee: and he saith, I am not learned. Wherefore the Lord said, Forasmuch as this people draw near me with their mouth, and with their lips do honour me, but have removed their heart far from me, and their fear toward me is taught by the precept of men: Therefore, behold, I will proceed to do a marvellous work among this people, even a marvellous work and a wonder: for the wisdom of their wise men shall perish, and the understanding of their prudent men shall be hid. Woe unto them that seek deep to hide their counsel from the LORD, and their works are in the dark, and they say, Who seeth us? and who knoweth us? Surely your turning of things upside down shall be esteemed as the potter’s clay: for shall the work say of him that made it, He made me not? or shall the thing framed say of him that framed it, He had no understanding? (Isaiah 29:9-16)

In the above passage many things are declared, but among the things stated, the following is given as the reason all these things have come upon Israel:

Wherefore the Lord said, Forasmuch as this people draw near me with their mouth, and with their lips do honour me, but have removed their heart far from me, and their fear toward me is taught by the precept of men: (Isaiah 29:13)

And again in the same passage:

Woe unto them that seek deep to hide their counsel from the LORD, and their works are in the dark, and they say, Who seeth us? and who knoweth us? (Isaiah 29:15)

By the above two verses, we now have a reason for the LORD God withholding grace from the Israelites. Clearly they chose to be dishonest with the LORD and attempted to hide their wickedness from Him. This is something that the LORD God does not tolerate at all, and has made it plain in His word from the very beginning.

The fact that grace was withheld from certain Israelites due to their deceitfulness gives us the express criteria for the “election of grace” described in Romans, chapter 11, verse five. This is a far cry from the Calvinist contention that God chose some in eternity past without any express standard or criteria, and without regard to what any particular individual does. Plainly and clearly, if one is deceitful and dishonest with the LORD, grace cannot be expected to be bestowed. One must be honest about who and what they are, both to themselves and to the LORD God. This does lead to the question of whether man is capable of being honest with himself and with the LORD, but that will be dealt with later. For now, we must return to Romans, chapter 11 and examine the last verse that uses the word “election” and see what it states:

As concerning the gospel, they are enemies for your sakes: but as touching the election, they are beloved for the fathers’ sakes. (Romans 11:28)

Again, we can see that this passage states nothing about why some are elected and others are not. Thus, we pass it by and examine the word “chosen” as used in Acts, chapter 9:

Then Ananias answered, Lord, I have heard by many of this man, how much evil he hath done to thy saints at Jerusalem: And here he hath authority from the chief priests to bind all that call on thy name. But the Lord said unto him, Go thy way: for he is a chosen vessel unto me, to bear my name before the Gentiles, and kings, and the children of Israel: For I will shew him how great things he must suffer for my name’s sake. And Ananias went his way, and entered into the house; and putting his hands on him said, Brother Saul, the Lord, even Jesus, that appeared unto thee in the way as thou camest, hath sent me, that thou mightest receive thy sight, and be filled with the Holy Ghost. And immediately there fell from his eyes as it had been scales: and he received sight forthwith, and arose, and was baptized. (Acts 9:13-18)

Now, before some go and proclaim that receiving the Holy Ghost constituted the salvation of Saul, it is necessary to examine what happens immediately upon Ananias’ statement to Saul. It is expressly stated that he “received sight forthwith, and arose, and was baptized.” which is consistent with the empowerment of the Holy Ghost to perform a work for the LORD. Hence, Saul’s receiving the Holy Ghost has everything to do with his baptism, and little to nothing to do with his salvation. One can be saved, and yet not be “filled with the Holy Ghost” (ref. Acts 2:1-4, Acts 4:5-10, Acts 4:31, Acts 13:6-12).

In returning to the examination of the usage of the word “chosen” in the passage, we find the context here to be one of chosen for a specific work. The statement is made:

Go thy way: for he is a chosen vessel unto me, to bear my name before the Gentiles, and kings, and the children of Israel: For I will shew him how great things he must suffer for my name’s sake. (Acts 9:15b-16)

Again, we find that this has nothing to do with being chosen, or elected to salvation, rather it is about being elected for a specific work, with no criteria being given as pertaining to Saul’s salvation. In other words, we are not told that Saul was preselected, or predetermined for salvation. What we are told is that Saul was chosen for a specific work after salvation. Please note, it does not necessarily follow that someone who is chosen for a specific work after salvation, was predestined to be saved in the first place. There is a vast difference between foreknowledge, and predestination. The LORD God can and does predestinate certain individuals to perform a certain work after salvation, because He knew beforehand that they would repent and believe the gospel. This does not mean He predestined that individual, or any other individual for salvation.

To be continued . . .

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8 Responses to “The Westboro “Baptist” Church Lie – Calvinism’s True Face: Pt. 5”

  • Paul says:

    Several of the previous comments were removed at the request of the commenter.

  • Aaron says:

    The vast majority of Christians who reject the Reformed view of predestination adopt what is sometimes called prescient or foreknowledge(prior knowledge). This view teaches that from all eternity God knew how we would live. He knew in advance whether we would receive Christ or reject Christ. He knew our free choices before we ever made them. God’s choice of our eternal destiny then was made on the basis of what he knew we would choose. He chooses us because he knows in advance that we will choose him. The elect, then, are those who God knows will choose Christ freely.

    In this understanding both the eternal decree of God and the free choice of man are left intact. The basis for our ultimate judgement rests ultimately upon our decision for or against Christ. It seems to have at least one strong bibilical warrant. If we turn our attention again to Paul’s letter to the Romans we read” 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. Morever whom He predestined, these He also called, whom He called, these He also justified; and whom He justified, these He also glorified Romans 8:29-30).

    This well known passage in Romans has been called the” Golden Chain Of Salvation”. It is crucial to the forknowledge view that in this text God’s foreknowledge comes BEFORE God’s predestination.

    First, the conclusion that God’s predestination is determined by God’s foreknowledge is not taught by the passage. Paul does not say that God chooses people on the basis of his prior knowledge of their choices. That idea is neither stated nor implied by the text. All the text declares is that God predestines those he foreknows. No one disputes that God has foreknowledge. Even God could not choose poeple he didn’t know anything about. Before he could choose Jacob he had to have some idea in his mind of Jacob. But the text does not teach that God chose Jacob on the basis of Jacob’s choice.
    Note the order of events in the passage. FOREKNOWLEDGE-PREDESTINATION-CALLING-JUSTIFICATION-GLORIFICATION. The crucial problem here has to do with the relationship of calling and justification. What does Paul mean by “calling”. In theology we distinguish between God’s external call and God’s internal call. We find the external call in the preaching of the gospel. Not everyone who hears the outward call of the gospel becomes a believer. Sometimes the gospel falls on deaf ears.

    Now we know that only those who respond to the outward call of the gospel in faith our justified. Justification is by faith. But again, not everyone who hears the outward preaching of the gospel responds in faith. Therefore we must conclude that not all who are CALLED outwardly are justified.

    But Paul says in Romans that those whom God CALLS, he JUSTIFIES. If Paul does not mean that ALL who are CALLED are JUSTIFIED, the only alternative would be that SOME who are justified. If we supply the word Some in the GOLDEN CHAIN it would read like this:

    Some of those he foreknew, he also predestined. Some of those he predestined, he also called.Some of those he called, these he also justified. Some of those he justified, he also glorified.

    This reading of the text leaves us with a theological nightmare. It would mean that only some of the predestined ever hear the gospel and that only some of the justified are ultimately saved. These notions are in conflict with what the Bible teaches on these matters.

    Paul- if God’s predestination is based on his foreknowledge of how people will respond to the outward call of the gospel, how is it that only some of the predestined are even called? It would demand that God predestines some who are not called.

    If All who are called are justified, then the passage could mean one of two things:
    A) All who hear the gospel outwardly are justified; or
    B) All who are called by God inwardly are justified.

    If you believe option A, you are a universalist, that everyone will be saved.
    If you believe option B, all who are called inwardly by God are justified.

    If all whom God calls inwardly are justified and all whom God predestines are called inwardly, then it follows that God’s foreknowledge concerns more than a mere prior awareness of the free decisions humans will make. God knows from eternity whom he will inwardly call. All who he inwardly calls he will also justify. If option B is the correct understanding of the Golden Chain, then it is clear that God gives one kind of call to some people that he does not give to everyone. Since all who are called are justified and since not everyone is justified, the it follows that calling is a rather significant divine activity that some human beings receive and others do not.

    It is crucial to remeber that the inward call of God is given to people before they believe, before they respond in faith. If it influences the response in any way, then God is predestinating an advantage to the elect. If it does not influence the human decision, then what does it do?

    The Golden Chain Of Salvation teaches from all eternity God foreknew his elect.He had an idea of their identities in his mind before he created them. He not only foreknew them in the sense of knowing them, but he also foreknew them in a sense of foreloving them.

    In conclusion I believe that all whom God has thus foreknown he has also predestined to be inwardly called, to be justified, and to be glorified. God sovereignly brings the salvation of his elect and only his elect.

    Source : Rc Sproul “Chosen by God”

  • Aaron says:

    Will you please address this comment, your foreknowledge/predestination views depend on it. If you cannot defend your view of foreknowledge/predestination scripturally, then you must concede that your view was wrong.

  • Paul says:

    R.C. Sproul’s “Golden Chain of Salvation” (if indeed it is even his) is a fine piece of illogic and distortion of the English language, but it doesn’t prove anything Scripturally.

    When I get done analyzing R.C. Sproul’s convoluted logic, I’ll post it, and I will explain why it is absolutely wrong and unscriptural.

  • Aaron says:

    Can’t wait.

  • Aaron says:

    By the way, The Golden Chain of Salvation or Redemption is scriptural. It is the unbreakable chain that Paul refers to in Romans 8:29-30. Foreknew-Predestined-Called-Justified-Glorified.

    Do you notice and agree that five things are linked together into one unbreakable chain? If not, why?

    Do you notice and agree that if one of them is true then they are all true? If not, why?

  • Aaron says:

    In addition to the questions above in my comments, I have given you some additional information to aid you in your research.

    Romans 8:29-30 For those whom (1) He FOREKNEW, He also (2) PREDESTINED to become conformed to the image of His Son, so that He would be the firstborn among many brethren; 30 and these whom He predestined, He also (3) CALLED; and these whom He called, He also (4) JUSTIFIED; and these whom He justified, He also (5) GLORIFIED.

    One the best loved verses in all of the word of God is Romans 8:28, but most believers do not realize that the foundation upon which this great verse rests is the verses that follow, verses that describe what has been called “The Golden Chain of Redemption.” When Paul declared that God works “all things,” without a single exception, together for his own glory and the good of his people, he was making quite a claim. One might ask, “Paul, how can you make such a sweeping and dogmatic statement?” The next verse begins with the word “for” and Paul’s reason for being so certain is laid out in five tremendous statements. These statements have well been called, “The Five Golden Links in the Chain of Sovereign Grace.” Let us examine them.

    I. The first important thing to notice is the five things are linked together into one unbreakable chain. If one of them is true then they are all true. The word “for” in verse 29 begins the argument that proves beyond question that all things have to work together for good for the people of God. The Apostle lists five things that are certain to happen because of God’s sovereign purpose. God’s people are (1) all foreknown, (2) all predestined, (3) all called, (4) all justified, and (5) all glorified.

    All five of these things are set forth as not only essential to God’s eternal purpose of salvation but also as absolutely certain of fulfillment. They summarize the salvation of sovereign grace that has it’s origins in eternity with God’s foreknowledge and ends in eternity with our full glorification. Each link grows out of the former link to form one unbreakable chain. Every sinner who is “foreknown” is going to eventually be totally “glorified.” Notice how all five links fit nicely together.

    When verse 29 says, “For those whom He foreknew,” it must be referring to a specific identifiable people. They are the identical same people who in verse 28 “love God” and have been “called.” All of those who are “foreknown” are also “predestined to become conformed into the image of His Son.” The foreknown ones and the predestined are the same identical people. All those who are foreknown and then predestined are next “called.” Being effectually called is the first step taken to bring guilty sinners out of the graveyard of sin and death and ultimately glorify them in heaven in full redemption. The order of these things is important. It is especially important in the next step. All those who are called, because they have been foreknown and predestined, are also all “justified.” In other words, everyone, without a single exception that is effectually called by the Holy Spirit unto salvation will always be justified.

    .Non-Reformed theology teaches that God calls all men without exception and those who, with their free will, decide to respond were then justified and predestined to be eternally secure. The predestining purpose of God always came after the sinner’s willingness to answer God’s call. It is obvious that this idea is not possible in this passage of Scripture. According to Paul, our calling unto salvation by the Holy Spirit comes after and grows out of our predestination and not vice versa. If that were not true, the text would say, “God calls all men, and justifies only those who are willing to believe.” However, the text puts the order exactly in the reverse order. We were not predestined to final glorification because we were willing to believe, but we were made willing to believe only because we had already been predestined. Calling is merely the first step towards the foreordained end of total glorification and all who have been foreordained to that end will be called and justified. The Holy Spirit clearly states that all without exception who are called are also justified. It is impossible to be called, in the sense that Paul is using the word “called,” without also being justified.

    Obviously Paul is talking about effectual calling, or regeneration. The first result of being called is that we are justified, and the final climax of God’s work is total glorification. All those who are justified will most certainly be glorified. That fact is so certain that Paul speaks of it as already past, and so it is in the eternal purposes of God. This is the only place in Paul’s writings where he jumps from justification to glorification and skips sanctification. It is not because he quit believing that sanctification was essential, but in this argument he is talking about the “eternal purpose of God” and present and ultimate glorification are completely and absolutely certain for every foreknown, predestined, called, and justified person.

    . Let me paraphrase these verses and answer the question, “How can I be sure God will do what he promised in Romans 8:28.” I can be sure because “Those,” all of them and only them, who have been foreknown by God in electing grace, are certain of ultimate salvation (total glorification) because God has sovereignly purposed to conform them, all of them and only them, into the image of Christ. God’s first step in this gracious purpose is to effectually “call” them, the foreknown and predestined ones, all of them and only them, by the power of the Holy Spirit through the gospel. Those, all of them and only them, whom he calls he also “justifies” and applies to them the righteousness of Christ. It is impossible to be foreknown and predestined and not be called just as it is not possible to be called if you were not foreknown and predestined. Likewise it is not possible to be called without that calling producing justification. Those, all of them and only them, who are justified are already glorified in the sovereign purposes of God. In God’s mind it is what we would call a “done deal.”

    To review what we have seen thus far, the biblical order of salvation is:

    Foreknowledge = Foreordination that is based in God’s eternal decree.

    Predestination/Election – God’s sovereign determination of who would be saved by His own good pleasure and not based upon anything in those who are chosen (Rom. 9:11).

    Effectual Calling – the outward call of the gospel comes to the sinner through evangelism and the inward call of the Holy Spirit experienced in the heart of the person brings about spiritual regeneration (John 6:44). This inward call is the “call” of Romans 8:29-30. This effectual calling leads to (a) spiritual regeneration which logically leads to (b) Repentance unto life/faith in Jesus Christ. Regeneration, saving faith, and repentance all occur simultaneously in time but logically, regeneration comes before faith/regeneration (1 John 5:1; 2 Tim. 2:25).

    Justification – the declaration of a sinner as righteous before God on the basis of Christ’s righteousness credited to them. The believer is also declared completely sanctified (holy) at the moment of justification but also continues to grow in holiness practically throughout life. Conversion immediately follows regeneration/repentance/faith and justification as expressed in an outward profession of faith and water baptism.

    Glorification (sinless perfection that only occurs when in heaven).
    It is important to realize that the “Golden Chain of Redemption”/Order of Salvation has as much to do with salvation stages as it does with the cause(s) of salvation itself. Thus, a person is regenerated by the Holy Spirit in order to be gifted with faith, but there is no such thing as a regenerated person that is walking about without saving faith.

    Source: A Reformed Theologian

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    1. Aaron Says:

      What people do not understand they often try to explain away. I do not know what Westboro Baptist Church teaches, but every blog you have written about Calvinism is not accurate. Opinions on a theology you do not understand is not sound apologetics. Below is my rebuttal to part 5.

      you said:

      The word “election” does not get much usage in Scripture. There are only about six instances of the word, and the underlying Greek word is found seven times as it is translated as “chosen” once.

      Wow, where do I begin? The word “elect, election, elect’s” are found all over scripture. The greek word “eklektos”(elect)(1588) meaning favorite, chosen, elect, is found in Mt 24:24;31, Mk 13: 20;22;27, Lk 18:27, Rom 8:33, Col 3:12, 1Ti 5:21, Titus 1:1, 1 Pet 1:2, 1Pet 2:6, 2Jn 1, 2Jn 13. The hebrew word “bachiyr”(elect) meaning choose, chosen one, elect, is found in Is 42:1, Is 45:4, Is 65:9, Is 65:22.

      The greek word “ekloge”(election)(1589) meaning (divine) selection, chosen, election is found in Rom 9:11, Rom 11:5, Rom 11:7, Rom 11:28, 1 Th 1:4, 2 Pet 1:10.

      Th greek word ” eklektos” (elect’s)(1588) meaning favorite, chosen,elect, is found in Mt 24:22, Mk 13:20, 2 Timothy 2:10.

      I suggest you get a copy of the original Hebrew/Greek translation of the bible, if you have not already done so. As you can see, the word “elect, election, elect’s” are used frequently and mean the same.

      you said:

      Go thy way: for he is a chosen vessel unto me, to bear my name before the Gentiles, and kings, and the children of Israel: For I will shew him how great things he must suffer for my name’s sake. (Acts 9:15b-16)

      Again, we find that this has nothing to do with being chosen, or elected to salvation, rather it is about being elected for a specific work, with no criteria being given as pertaining to Saul’s salvation. In other words, we are not told that Saul was preselected, or predetermined for salvation. What we are told is that Saul was chosen for a specific work after salvation.

      Aaron: The word “chosen” is the greek word” ekloge”(1589) meaning divine selection, chosen.The original Greek reads like this” But to him the Lord, Go, because a vessel of election to Me is this one, to bear the name of Me before nations and kings, sons and of Israel; I wiil show him how many must he on behalf of my name of Me suffer.

      A” vessel of election” There was perfect continuity between Paul’s salvation and his service. God chose him to salvation and to convey His grace to all people.

      you said:

      There is a vast difference between foreknowledge, and predestination. The LORD God can and does predestinate certain individuals to perform a certain work after salvation, because He knew beforehand that they would repent and believe the gospel. This does not mean He predestined that individual, or any other individual for salvation.

      Aaron: Ok Paul, if God’s predestination is based on his foreknowledge of how people would respond to the gospel, how is it that only some of the predestined are even called? It would demand that God predestines some who are not called., If some of the predestined are predestined without being called, then God would not be basing his predestination on a prior knowledge of their response to his call. they could not have no response to a call they never receive. God cannot have foreknowledge of a person’s non-answer to a non-call.

      So based on Romans 8: 29-30, Paul cannot be implying the word some. Rather the Golden Chain Of Salvation necessarily implies the word all. Please refer back to my original email for reference.

      Aaron

    2. Paul Says:

      Several of the previous comments were removed at the request of the commenter.

    3. Aaron Says:

      The vast majority of Christians who reject the Reformed view of predestination adopt what is sometimes called prescient or foreknowledge(prior knowledge). This view teaches that from all eternity God knew how we would live. He knew in advance whether we would receive Christ or reject Christ. He knew our free choices before we ever made them. God’s choice of our eternal destiny then was made on the basis of what he knew we would choose. He chooses us because he knows in advance that we will choose him. The elect, then, are those who God knows will choose Christ freely.

      In this understanding both the eternal decree of God and the free choice of man are left intact. The basis for our ultimate judgement rests ultimately upon our decision for or against Christ. It seems to have at least one strong bibilical warrant. If we turn our attention again to Paul’s letter to the Romans we read” 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. Morever whom He predestined, these He also called, whom He called, these He also justified; and whom He justified, these He also glorified Romans 8:29-30).

      This well known passage in Romans has been called the” Golden Chain Of Salvation”. It is crucial to the forknowledge view that in this text God’s foreknowledge comes BEFORE God’s predestination.

      First, the conclusion that God’s predestination is determined by God’s foreknowledge is not taught by the passage. Paul does not say that God chooses people on the basis of his prior knowledge of their choices. That idea is neither stated nor implied by the text. All the text declares is that God predestines those he foreknows. No one disputes that God has foreknowledge. Even God could not choose poeple he didn’t know anything about. Before he could choose Jacob he had to have some idea in his mind of Jacob. But the text does not teach that God chose Jacob on the basis of Jacob’s choice.
      Note the order of events in the passage. FOREKNOWLEDGE-PREDESTINATION-CALLING-JUSTIFICATION-GLORIFICATION. The crucial problem here has to do with the relationship of calling and justification. What does Paul mean by “calling”. In theology we distinguish between God’s external call and God’s internal call. We find the external call in the preaching of the gospel. Not everyone who hears the outward call of the gospel becomes a believer. Sometimes the gospel falls on deaf ears.

      Now we know that only those who respond to the outward call of the gospel in faith our justified. Justification is by faith. But again, not everyone who hears the outward preaching of the gospel responds in faith. Therefore we must conclude that not all who are CALLED outwardly are justified.

      But Paul says in Romans that those whom God CALLS, he JUSTIFIES. If Paul does not mean that ALL who are CALLED are JUSTIFIED, the only alternative would be that SOME who are justified. If we supply the word Some in the GOLDEN CHAIN it would read like this:

      Some of those he foreknew, he also predestined. Some of those he predestined, he also called.Some of those he called, these he also justified. Some of those he justified, he also glorified.

      This reading of the text leaves us with a theological nightmare. It would mean that only some of the predestined ever hear the gospel and that only some of the justified are ultimately saved. These notions are in conflict with what the Bible teaches on these matters.

      Paul- if God’s predestination is based on his foreknowledge of how people will respond to the outward call of the gospel, how is it that only some of the predestined are even called? It would demand that God predestines some who are not called.

      If All who are called are justified, then the passage could mean one of two things:
      A) All who hear the gospel outwardly are justified; or
      B) All who are called by God inwardly are justified.

      If you believe option A, you are a universalist, that everyone will be saved.
      If you believe option B, all who are called inwardly by God are justified.

      If all whom God calls inwardly are justified and all whom God predestines are called inwardly, then it follows that God’s foreknowledge concerns more than a mere prior awareness of the free decisions humans will make. God knows from eternity whom he will inwardly call. All who he inwardly calls he will also justify. If option B is the correct understanding of the Golden Chain, then it is clear that God gives one kind of call to some people that he does not give to everyone. Since all who are called are justified and since not everyone is justified, the it follows that calling is a rather significant divine activity that some human beings receive and others do not.

      It is crucial to remeber that the inward call of God is given to people before they believe, before they respond in faith. If it influences the response in any way, then God is predestinating an advantage to the elect. If it does not influence the human decision, then what does it do?

      The Golden Chain Of Salvation teaches from all eternity God foreknew his elect.He had an idea of their identities in his mind before he created them. He not only foreknew them in the sense of knowing them, but he also foreknew them in a sense of foreloving them.

      In conclusion I believe that all whom God has thus foreknown he has also predestined to be inwardly called, to be justified, and to be glorified. God sovereignly brings the salvation of his elect and only his elect.

      Source : Rc Sproul “Chosen by God”

    4. Aaron Says:

      Will you please address this comment, your foreknowledge/predestination views depend on it. If you cannot defend your view of foreknowledge/predestination scripturally, then you must concede that your view was wrong.

    5. Paul Says:

      R.C. Sproul’s “Golden Chain of Salvation” (if indeed it is even his) is a fine piece of illogic and distortion of the English language, but it doesn’t prove anything Scripturally.

      When I get done analyzing R.C. Sproul’s convoluted logic, I’ll post it, and I will explain why it is absolutely wrong and unscriptural.

    6. Aaron Says:

      Can’t wait.

    7. Aaron Says:

      By the way, The Golden Chain of Salvation or Redemption is scriptural. It is the unbreakable chain that Paul refers to in Romans 8:29-30. Foreknew-Predestined-Called-Justified-Glorified.

      Do you notice and agree that five things are linked together into one unbreakable chain? If not, why?

      Do you notice and agree that if one of them is true then they are all true? If not, why?

    8. Aaron Says:

      In addition to the questions above in my comments, I have given you some additional information to aid you in your research.

      Romans 8:29-30 For those whom (1) He FOREKNEW, He also (2) PREDESTINED to become conformed to the image of His Son, so that He would be the firstborn among many brethren; 30 and these whom He predestined, He also (3) CALLED; and these whom He called, He also (4) JUSTIFIED; and these whom He justified, He also (5) GLORIFIED.

      One the best loved verses in all of the word of God is Romans 8:28, but most believers do not realize that the foundation upon which this great verse rests is the verses that follow, verses that describe what has been called “The Golden Chain of Redemption.” When Paul declared that God works “all things,” without a single exception, together for his own glory and the good of his people, he was making quite a claim. One might ask, “Paul, how can you make such a sweeping and dogmatic statement?” The next verse begins with the word “for” and Paul’s reason for being so certain is laid out in five tremendous statements. These statements have well been called, “The Five Golden Links in the Chain of Sovereign Grace.” Let us examine them.

      I. The first important thing to notice is the five things are linked together into one unbreakable chain. If one of them is true then they are all true. The word “for” in verse 29 begins the argument that proves beyond question that all things have to work together for good for the people of God. The Apostle lists five things that are certain to happen because of God’s sovereign purpose. God’s people are (1) all foreknown, (2) all predestined, (3) all called, (4) all justified, and (5) all glorified.

      All five of these things are set forth as not only essential to God’s eternal purpose of salvation but also as absolutely certain of fulfillment. They summarize the salvation of sovereign grace that has it’s origins in eternity with God’s foreknowledge and ends in eternity with our full glorification. Each link grows out of the former link to form one unbreakable chain. Every sinner who is “foreknown” is going to eventually be totally “glorified.” Notice how all five links fit nicely together.

      When verse 29 says, “For those whom He foreknew,” it must be referring to a specific identifiable people. They are the identical same people who in verse 28 “love God” and have been “called.” All of those who are “foreknown” are also “predestined to become conformed into the image of His Son.” The foreknown ones and the predestined are the same identical people. All those who are foreknown and then predestined are next “called.” Being effectually called is the first step taken to bring guilty sinners out of the graveyard of sin and death and ultimately glorify them in heaven in full redemption. The order of these things is important. It is especially important in the next step. All those who are called, because they have been foreknown and predestined, are also all “justified.” In other words, everyone, without a single exception that is effectually called by the Holy Spirit unto salvation will always be justified.

      .Non-Reformed theology teaches that God calls all men without exception and those who, with their free will, decide to respond were then justified and predestined to be eternally secure. The predestining purpose of God always came after the sinner’s willingness to answer God’s call. It is obvious that this idea is not possible in this passage of Scripture. According to Paul, our calling unto salvation by the Holy Spirit comes after and grows out of our predestination and not vice versa. If that were not true, the text would say, “God calls all men, and justifies only those who are willing to believe.” However, the text puts the order exactly in the reverse order. We were not predestined to final glorification because we were willing to believe, but we were made willing to believe only because we had already been predestined. Calling is merely the first step towards the foreordained end of total glorification and all who have been foreordained to that end will be called and justified. The Holy Spirit clearly states that all without exception who are called are also justified. It is impossible to be called, in the sense that Paul is using the word “called,” without also being justified.

      Obviously Paul is talking about effectual calling, or regeneration. The first result of being called is that we are justified, and the final climax of God’s work is total glorification. All those who are justified will most certainly be glorified. That fact is so certain that Paul speaks of it as already past, and so it is in the eternal purposes of God. This is the only place in Paul’s writings where he jumps from justification to glorification and skips sanctification. It is not because he quit believing that sanctification was essential, but in this argument he is talking about the “eternal purpose of God” and present and ultimate glorification are completely and absolutely certain for every foreknown, predestined, called, and justified person.

      . Let me paraphrase these verses and answer the question, “How can I be sure God will do what he promised in Romans 8:28.” I can be sure because “Those,” all of them and only them, who have been foreknown by God in electing grace, are certain of ultimate salvation (total glorification) because God has sovereignly purposed to conform them, all of them and only them, into the image of Christ. God’s first step in this gracious purpose is to effectually “call” them, the foreknown and predestined ones, all of them and only them, by the power of the Holy Spirit through the gospel. Those, all of them and only them, whom he calls he also “justifies” and applies to them the righteousness of Christ. It is impossible to be foreknown and predestined and not be called just as it is not possible to be called if you were not foreknown and predestined. Likewise it is not possible to be called without that calling producing justification. Those, all of them and only them, who are justified are already glorified in the sovereign purposes of God. In God’s mind it is what we would call a “done deal.”

      To review what we have seen thus far, the biblical order of salvation is:

      Foreknowledge = Foreordination that is based in God’s eternal decree.

      Predestination/Election – God’s sovereign determination of who would be saved by His own good pleasure and not based upon anything in those who are chosen (Rom. 9:11).

      Effectual Calling – the outward call of the gospel comes to the sinner through evangelism and the inward call of the Holy Spirit experienced in the heart of the person brings about spiritual regeneration (John 6:44). This inward call is the “call” of Romans 8:29-30. This effectual calling leads to (a) spiritual regeneration which logically leads to (b) Repentance unto life/faith in Jesus Christ. Regeneration, saving faith, and repentance all occur simultaneously in time but logically, regeneration comes before faith/regeneration (1 John 5:1; 2 Tim. 2:25).

      Justification – the declaration of a sinner as righteous before God on the basis of Christ’s righteousness credited to them. The believer is also declared completely sanctified (holy) at the moment of justification but also continues to grow in holiness practically throughout life. Conversion immediately follows regeneration/repentance/faith and justification as expressed in an outward profession of faith and water baptism.

      Glorification (sinless perfection that only occurs when in heaven).
      It is important to realize that the “Golden Chain of Redemption”/Order of Salvation has as much to do with salvation stages as it does with the cause(s) of salvation itself. Thus, a person is regenerated by the Holy Spirit in order to be gifted with faith, but there is no such thing as a regenerated person that is walking about without saving faith.

      Source: A Reformed Theologian

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