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Predestination - What is it Suppose to be About?

By APsit190, in Doctrine, Theology 21 July 2014 · 3,786 views

Theology
Predestination. Its a word that is in the New Testament, and its a word that gets bandied about quite a bit, and who and what gets or doesn't get predestined is argued until the cows come home, and then even argued until after the cows have left the next day. The one thing which every theologian seems to agree about, is that it (seems) to have a lot to do with salvation, calling and election (not the type of election where a vote is cast to see whether or not you make it into whatever you've been wanting to be elected for).

From where I am sitting (which is in Christchurch, New Zealand in a pokey little room at my desk on my PC) I actually do wonder if that is what predestination is really all about. Is it actually about just Salvation, and that's about as good as it gets, or is it more than that? Or is it actually really it has not much to do with salvation as such per se, but rather deals with a much larger picture, such as the plans and purposes of God, or in other words, God's Eternal Purpose? Now don't get me wrong on this, because salvation actually does have a part to play in this, but the part although is really important, its only a small part, what one could call the starting point of what Predestination is about.

So, if all that is true, then comes a really big question, "Predestination - What is it Suppose to be About?"

Well, from where I am sitting (which is exactly in the same place as before, which is in Christchurch, New Zealand in a pokey little room at my desk on my PC. And its winter), being predestined has everything to do with what one has been predestined into. Now, this goes way beyond salvation, calling, and election because this goes right into where God wants us to be at in regards to his plans and purposes. This means that God has predestined us for a reason, and that he has predestined us for a purpose, which fits in to what he wants to do with us. And its here we actually see what the sovereignty of God is all about in relation to predestination. You see there are two things about God we need to remember.
  • God is holy and righteous, and that he does nothing which is outside of his holiness and righteousness, which means that everything God does, he does within the framework of his holiness and righteousness.
  • God does nothing without a plan and a purpose or a rhyme or reason, which means that everything God does has a plan and a purpose. This also means that there is a reason, and a perspective that God has.
Although we may not understand all of God's reasoning, plans and purposes, yet this does not lessen them in any sense for there importance and significance, because all these things fit within his divine sovereign will.

So now that we have this basic understanding of what predestination is about, we can now ask the next question, "What has God predestined us to be, and what has God predestined us into?

To answer this question, we need to dive into Paul's letter to (you've guessed it) the Ephesians, because its here (not so much in Romans) we find the answers to this question.

Firstly, what God has predestined us into is really quite simple. Eph 1:5 tells us that God "... predestined to us to ..." wait for it, TAA-DAA, "... to adoptions as sons by Jesus Christ to himself ..." Now, just so there is no confusion, adoption ain't salvation, and salvation ain't adoption. Adoption is the purpose of being saved, and its what he, that is God, has predestined us for.

Secondly, The part of the purpose of God, in regards to predestination, of which we are included with it is seen in Eph 1:10, "... that in the dispensation of the fullness of the times, he might gather together in one all things in Christ, both which are in heaven and which are on earth in Him. Here is where we can actually see the sovereignty of God really being played out to go according to what he has planned and purposed for the pleasure of his divine will of which is steeped in his righteousness and holiness.

The extend this goes to, in regards to us is as follows:
  • Us, both Jew and Gentile, to be one new man - the new creation
  • Us, both Jew and Gentile, to be the temple of the Holy Spirit
  • Us, both Jew and Gentile, to be the literal spiritual Body of Christ conjoined together commonly known as the Church
  • Us, both Jew and Gentile, to be the Bride of Christ,
This is a very brief picture of where God wants us, and a very brief picture of what predestination is really all about.

Blessings,
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Romans 8:29(KJV) 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.

 

I greatly appreciate and agree with your post. There is something more. Far beyond having heaven as our home. We have been made partakers of a "divine nature" (2 Peter 1:4so that as we make our decisions for the Lord something miraculous happens and we begin in some measure (30, 60, 100 fold) to reflect the character of Our Lord......until Christ be formed in you (Gal 4:19). Its not a life changed but a life exchanged. From "Glory to Glory", "Strength to Strength" and from "Faith to Faith". Its the "high calling" in Christ. A high plain of spiritual integrity...." ...its no longer I that live but Christ that lives in me..." (Gal 2:20) Only The Cross makes this possible...When Christ died we died (Rom 6:8)...only the life of the Son can please the Father....heaven will not be a place of mixture only measure.

 

Hebrews 2:10

For it was fitting for Him, for whom are all things and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons to glory,                

to make the captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings.

Romans 8:29(KJV) 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.

 

 

 

Hi Chang,

Thanks for your comments. You've certainly added in real food for thought as to what God has predestined us for.

 

Blessings,

 

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Hey APsit190, this is TC Exagorazo (Tom) Both you and Chang have a beautiful insight into God's purpose for predestination. I wish all Christians had the same belief. Unfortunately, this is not the case. Did either of you read my paper "The Spurious Tulip" ?? It was written a few years ago when there was a rift in my Church over this very "doctrine" I would be very interested in your opinion of my work (God's Work in my life) I was Calvinistic in my theology for over 30 years until God showed me my error. If you read my paper, you will get a better explanation, but for now let me just say that everything I wrote was shown to me through God, at a time that i was not looking for it. I crave feedback, either positive or negative. I've not gotten much even though there have been over 700 downloads. Please don't misunderstand, I am not looking for accolades. I just want to know if my interpretation of the Scriptures I use are in agreement or otherwise with you. Thanks for your time and God Bless.

 

in His Name,

Tom

 

PS: do you know what Exagorazo means?? (Greek)

Hi Tom,

Thanks a heap for your comment and your encouraging thoughts.

 

 



Did either of you read my paper "The Spurious Tulip" ??

 

Yes I did. In fact I've still got it, and had to glance at it to see what its was you had written.

 

At the time I read it when you put it out, I was still at the stage of wondering what all the hoo-ha was all about over the argument of Calvinism; especially that between Calvinism verses Arminianism ( or however you spell that blokes name).

 

You see, I really wasn't all that interested about Calvinism as such, but rather more interested in what predestination was all about. I knew that Calvin thoughts were way off the mark, just as equally as was Jacob Arminius theology over predestination, as I found, felt that both were arguing from an anthropocentric perspective, and having totally dipped out on getting God's perspective. The kind of questions I ask God when trying to gain his perspective are:

  • Why is this important to you?
  • What do you mean by that?
  • What are your reasons for that?

And a raft of other questions along those lines.

 

One of the things I've learned about God, of which has burned in me, is that he does nothing without a purpose. This (and that of God does nothing outside of his holiness and righteousness) has had a very profound effect on me to the point of seeing that everything has purpose, reason, planning, and etc., of which includes predestination. And the one thing that Scripture clearly shows, are the plans and purposes of God entrenched in His righteousness and Holiness.

 

So, when I view God in this light, I get totally awe struck at his majesty, and glory, and to think he made you and me, and all those who are saved (and about to get saved) really is totally mind blowing.

 

Blessings,

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I think that the statements "whosoever will may come" and the statement "you have not chosen me but I have chosen you" must be simultaneously true.  Genesis chapter 3 seems to indicate that God created Adam because He wanted a creature who was able to receive and return His love.  The price that God paid for a creature who was able to love Him was that he got one who was able not to love Him.  God, being omnicient, certainly knew how Adam would respond before Adam sinned; therefore God's plan of Salvation and Redemption must have been formed before Adam was created.  In order for the doctrine of free will, and the doctrine of Divine Sovreignty to be compatable, it is (I believe) likely that God chooses believers based on foreknowledge of their freewil response to Jesus.  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.  (Ro 8:29)  Even devine election must recognize that Love cannot be programmed; it must be volitional.  God, in His sovreignty, informs us: "that He desires that none should perish; but that all come to repentence (2Pe 3:9); but accepts that that desire will be unfulfilled because freewill is sufficiently important to God that He allows that desire to be frustrated.  Ro 8:29 suggests that both election and predestination are based on God's foreknowledge of how we exercise our freewill with respect to accepting the Lordship of Jesus.  The only logical reason why a Holy God would accept evil in His world is that Love is sufficently important to Him that He is willing to accept all the implications of freewill in order to make Love possible.

Hi Tom,

 

I Certainly agree that Predestination goes far beyond Salvation issues. Ep 2:10 certainly involves predestination as does Ro 8:28.

Salvation is certainly the starting point; and freewill is ceartinly an issue with respect to salvation..  I am not persuaded that there is not some level of cognative dissonance at times between God's disclosed plan for our lives in His service and our exercise of freewill.   When we approach life with full recognition of Jesus' Lordship, our freewill is subsumed to our obedience; but when we temporarily loose sight of our mission (as we all regretably do), Freewill comes into opposition to predestination.  'Not my will , but thine Lord' may govern our lifestyle as we mature in Christ; but it does NOT always govern our actions in the present!

 

I am not knowingly a dispensitionalist; and I believe that Calvin's treatment of his enemies disqualifies him as a teacher in light of

Mt 5:44.

Hey APsit190, I thoroughly enjoyed reading your piece on Predestination; so much information on this topic. I've been taught it was the plan of God that was predestined from the beginning how we are to be saved: Ephesians 1:5 Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children (does not refer to the individual being predestinated as to whether he will be saved or lost, but rather the manner in which one becomes a Child of God) by Jesus Christ to Himself (by means of the Cross), according to the good pleasure of His Will (it is an act of sovereignty, but an act based on love), The Expositor's Study Bible, Jimmy Swaggart Ministries. Kindle Edition.

 

God Bless you,

Jenn

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About Apsit 190's Theological Rants

Theological Rants are mostly about stuff in the Bible I believe. Its also a blog for sharing my thoughts that the Bible talks about, and how I think they can be applied to our lives.

Using the word, "Rants," is not to undermine anything the Bible says, nor is there to undermine or disparage what anyone else believes. That said, it is my soapbox, and with that to express the passion of my heart for my love of the Word of God.

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