29 September 2014

Because It Pleased Him to Choose

A.W. Pink; Photo: Wikipedia
God foreknows what will be because He has decreed what shall be. It is therefore a reversing of the order of Scripture, a putting of the cart before the horse, to affirm that God elects because He foreknows people. The truth is, He foreknows because He has elected. This removes the ground or cause of election from outside the creature, and places it in God’s own sovereign will. God purposed in Himself to elect a certain people, not because of anything good in them or from them, either actual or foreseen, but solely out of His own mere pleasure. As to why He chose the ones He did, we do not know, and can only say, “Even so, Father: for so it seemed good in thy sight.” The plain truth in Romans 8:29 is that God, before the foundation of the world, singled out certain sinners and appointed them unto salvation (2 Th 2:13). This is clear from the concluding words of the verse: “Predestinate to be conformed to the image of His Son.” God did not predestinate those whom He foreknew were “conformed,” but, on the contrary, those whom He “foreknew” (i.e., loved and elected) He predestinated “ to be conformed.” Their conformity to Christ is not the cause, but the effect of God’s foreknowledge and predestination.

God did not elect any sinner because He foresaw that he would believe, for the simple but sufficient reason that no sinner ever does believe until God gives him faith; just as no man sees until God gives him sight. Sight is God’s gift, seeing is the consequence of my using His gift. So faith is God’s gift (Eph 2:8-9), believing is the consequence of my using His gift. If it were true that God had elected certain ones to be saved because in due time they would believe, then that would make believing a meritorious act, and in that event the saved sinner would have ground for “boasting,” which Scripture emphatically denies (Eph 2:9). . . .

It thus appears that it is highly important for us to have clear and spiritual views of the foreknowledge of God. Erroneous conceptions about it lead inevitably to thoughts most dishonoring to Him. The popular idea of divine foreknowledge is altogether inadequate. God not only knew the end from the beginning, but He planned, fixed, predestinated everything from the beginning. And, as cause stands to effect, so God’s purpose is the ground of His prescience. If then the reader be a real Christian, he is so because God chose him in Christ before the foundation of the world (Eph 1:4), and chose not because He foresaw you would believe, but chose simply because it pleased Him to choose; chose you notwithstanding your natural unbelief. This being so, all the glory and praise belongs alone to Him. You have no ground for taking any credit to yourself. You have “believed through grace “ (Act 18:27), and that, because your very election was “of grace” (Rom 11:5).

–A.W. Pink, The Attributes of God (Kindle Locations 412-424;429-436)

Further Reading
Shattering the Idol of 'Free Will'
The Comfort and Conviction of the Word
Garage Sale God Whispers, Twice Dead, and the Name of Jesus Ignored

3 comments:

  1. How is this?
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=V0T_S3v8iB8

    ReplyDelete
  2. This has always been a hard one to understand and explain. Thank you for posting this. God Bless You

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Keep meditating on these truths, Deby! It may take years to wrap your head and heart around God's sovereign choosing (as it was in my case), but in the end it will be so liberating and exciting and empowering!

      Delete

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