What does Predestination mean in the Bible?

Dictionary

Bridgeway Bible Dictionary - Predestination
God is the sovereign ruler of the universe, one who is perfect in wisdom and power and who determines all things according to his will (Isaiah 46:10; Daniel 4:35; Acts 4:28; Ephesians 1:11). Predestination means that he ‘pre-destines’ what will happen – he sees, knows, plans, prepares, appoints and decides what will happen (Psalms 33:10-11; Proverbs 16:33; Isaiah 14:26-27; Isaiah 22:11; Isaiah 37:26-27; Acts 17:26-27; Romans 8:29-30; Ephesians 1:5-6; 1 Peter 1:20).
Divine will and human response
God’s predestination does not mean that people are the helpless victims of unalterable fate. They have the freedom to make their own decisions, and they are fully responsible for their actions (Luke 22:22; Acts 2:23; Acts 4:27-28; Romans 14:10; Romans 14:12; see also PROVIDENCE).
Predestination is concerned with the controlling will of God in all things, whether matters concerning the universe as a whole (Psalms 135:6-7; Hebrews 1:10-12), the nations of the world (Deuteronomy 7:6-8; Daniel 4:32) or individual people (Jeremiah 1:5; Acts 9:15). The entire life and work of Jesus Christ was according to the pre-determined purpose of God (Matthew 8:17; Matthew 12:17; Luke 24:44-47; Acts 4:25-27; 1 Peter 1:20). The particular aspect of predestination that is concerned with God’s salvation of sinners through Christ is commonly referred to as election (Romans 8:29-30; Romans 8:33; Ephesians 1:4; 1 Peter 1:2; see ELECTION).
People receive eternal life, not because of their efforts to earn it, but because God in his grace gives it to them freely. God makes the offer to all, but most refuse it; and God holds them responsible for their choice (John 3:16-19; John 8:24). Those who accept it, however, realize that only God’s grace has drawn them to the Saviour and given them the eternal life that God has prepared for them (John 6:37; John 6:40; John 6:44; John 10:27-29; John 17:2; Acts 13:48; 1 Thessalonians 5:9).
A purpose to life
God saves believers because of his eternal purpose, not because of their good works or their efforts at holiness (2 Timothy 1:9; cf. Ephesians 2:8-9). But once they are saved, they must produce good works and make every effort to be holy. Assurance of predestination, far from making them self-satisfied, gives them purpose in life (Ephesians 1:4; Ephesians 2:10; 2 Thessalonians 2:13). God’s will is not only to make them his sons (Ephesians 1:5), but to change them to become like his only Son (Romans 8:29). And one day they will share the Son’s glory (Romans 8:30; 2 Thessalonians 2:13-14).
Although believers see the purposes of God at work in their present lives, beyond that they see his purposes for the future. According to his perfect will, he has built his chosen ones into one body, the church (Ephesians 1:11-13; Ephesians 2:13-16; Colossians 3:15). This united body is a visible part of a far greater work that God is doing according to his eternal plan. That plan is designed to bring an end to all the conflict in the universe and restore all things to perfect unity through Jesus Christ (Ephesians 1:10; Ephesians 3:9-11).
Holman Bible Dictionary - Predestination
God's work in ordaining salvation for people without their prior knowledge.
Biblical Materials The English noun, predestination , does not occur in the Bible. The Greek verb translated predestinate occurs only four times in two passages of the Bible (Romans 8:29-30 ; Ephesians 1:5 ,Ephesians 1:5,1:11 ). It is used in Acts 4:28 of human determination. The word means to determine before or ordain. On these minimal facts entire systems of doctrine have been built.
The word predestinate ( proorizo ) is closely related to three other more frequently used biblical words: 1. to determine ; 2. to elect ; 3. to foreknow . Each of these represents several Greek and Hebrew words. Study of these words shows that for a study of predestination the key passages are Romans 8:1 ; Ephesians 1:1 ; and 1 Peter 1:1 . One of the appropriate things to notice in this biblical survey is that Acts refers to the purpose of God as determined (Acts 2:23 ; Acts 11:29 ; Romans 7:23-247 ); refers to Jesus as God's previously chosen One (Acts 2:23 ; Acts 10:41-42 ); to the early church as those previously taken in hand by God (Acts 22:14 ). A wise plan is to examine the major passages keeping the verses in Acts in mind.
Romans 8 Although the word predestinate is used only in Acts 22:29 and Acts 22:30 of this chapter, we must explore the entire chapter to understand the use of the word. Romans 7-8 form Paul's famous battle of the flesh and of the spirit. Romans 7:1 speaks of the place of law in shaping life. Law makes requirements, but it has no power to help people keep them. Sin is a constant struggle and an overwhelming experience ( 1618095955_46 ). Romans 8:1 is life in the Spirit. God's Spirit aids our spirit in the struggles of life and helps us to conquer all things through His Spirit. God purposes for His people a victorious, overcoming life. Such a life is not possible when we go it alone. God chooses and determines that it will be otherwise for His people.
The references to predestination in Romans 8:29 and Romans 8:30 come in the midst of a section of Scripture on salvation and spiritual struggle. Was Paul saying that all of his experience, before becoming a Christian and after, God decided in such a way that Paul had nothing to do with it and no decision in it? These passages could be seen that way, but they need not be. They also can be seen as the struggle of human willfulness and divine purpose and guidance. I see these passages, especially in the light of Paul's other writings, as a real struggle in which Paul realized that God's purpose for us is good and that God's determination to help us is prior to all of our struggles. In Jesus Christ, God has set the pattern. Believers are to be conformed to the image of Jesus Christ. God's determination is particularly and eternally expressed in what Christ is. He is like what we are supposed to be like. God's Spirit will help us to be like Jesus.
In a discussion of election and predestination, questions about Jacob and Esau (Romans 9:13 ) arise, as do questions about God “hardening Pharaoh's heart” (Romans 9:17-18 ). These verses could be interpreted to mean that God beforehand had planned things out without any regard for human response. The worst scenario would suggest that God had taken a nice young Egyptian prince and turned him into a monster. Romans 9:13 could mean that God really hated Esau and played favorites among His children. I do not believe this is the proper way to understand these passages. Paul, their human author, is looking back. Interpretations are easier after the fact. Whereas God is no respecter of persons whom He has created, He does not violate the free will He gave to humankind. God works with it. A better interpretation of these passages is to say that God used what Esau and Pharaoh had become. Esau, a compulsive man who sought instant gratification of his desires, would not be the kind of person who becomes a patriarch. Pharaoh, a ruthless man, God confirmed and judged as an oppressor; Pharaoh's harsh and cruel acts were punished. In that punishment God received glory to Himself, even out of Pharaoh's disobedience.
Ephesians 1The first chapter of Ephesians is first and foremost about Jesus Christ. Christ contains, expresses, and effects God's purpose. When people hear the gospel message and believe that message (Romans 9:13 ,Romans 9:13,9:15 ), they live on earth under the leadership of Jesus Christ as Head of the body.
Such believers are sealed by the Spirit (Romans 9:13 ); therefore, the power of God working in us can enlarge us, open our eyes, increase our faith, and enable us to believe. Does God do this without our own willing and cooperation, or are we free participants in what God is doing through the believing community under the headship of Christ and in the power of the Spirit? It seems to me that the believers addressed are welcomed to faith and encouraged to believe and enlarge their lives in Christ's church. The specific references in Romans 9:5 and Romans 9:11 fit in this context if we do not draw them out of place and ask first what it means that we were predestined before the foundation of the world according to God's will. Jesus Christ is first and foremost God's chosen. He is the agent of God's redemptive plan from eternity. Jesus Christ embodies the way, the will, and the good pleasure of God. By Jesus we know the Father; in Him God's will is effected in history. We are included as we are included in Jesus. We are included, predestined, and elected as we believe in Him by the power of the Spirit. God, working His way through us, determines us. Apparently, part of God's determination is that the Ephesians and ourselves should be participants in our limited human way with God in doing God's will. God's will is that people should have a will to exercise toward God. The painful personal experience reflected in Romans 7:1 and the sinful corporate experiences of human divisions spoken of in the remainder of Ephesians lead us to believe that we can also exercise our wills in refusing to believe in God and in disobeying God. Predestination never eliminates human will.
1Peter 1 Peter 1:2 is a part of the greeting of the author to the readers. He greets them and us in the name of the foreknowing Father, the sanctifying Spirit, and the sacrifice of the Son. The greeting is a kind of prelude under which exhortations to Christian living are given. The entire epistle presupposes both the guidance of God and the ability of people to cooperate with God in living the Christian life.
Other Passages Luke 22:22 declares that Jesus died according to the plan of God in which He freely participated. So does Acts 2:23 , which adds human wickedness also entered into the betrayal of Jesus. Acts 17:26 assures us that the eyewitness apostles were especially chosen of God. The disciples determined they would provide help to the needy ( Acts 11:29 ). God determined the basic parameters of humanity (Acts 17:26 ). The gist of these references is that God works according to a plan and purpose and so should we, especially as we determine to do His will.
Two special problems that arise in relation to predestination are the place of Judaism (Romans 9-11 ) and of Judas (John 6:70-71 ) in the determination of God. Paul said that Judaism is God's preparation for the fulness of Christ, that they rejected God's fullest revelation of God in Christ, and that God confronts them with Christ inevitably and ultimately. Meanwhile, the task of the church is to confront all persons with Christ. The purpose of predestination is to be conformed to goodness and to bear witness to God in Christ. Judas was chosen by Jesus as were all of the disciples. As all disciples of Jesus, Judas had the capacity for betrayal—so did Peter. Judas exercised his will to betray. The evil one found in Judas a willing instrument (John 13:27 ). Jesus had to be betrayed. Judas did not have to do it, but he did.
Later Questions The above basic biblical facts were used to construct later doctrinal systems. Human logic and the desire for systematic conclusions and neat, packaged answers lead to hard solutions about freedom and destiny. Questions which lead to this development were: If God is sovereign, how can humans be free? If God knows about everything in advance, does that mean that He forces things to be the way they are? Does not God give grace to those who are to be saved and withhold it from those who are not? If God decreed that some are to be saved, does this not mean He has predestined others to be damned?
The problem with these later questions is that they go beyond Scripture in their desire to figure everything out. They ignore large portions of Scripture and Christian experience which assume human choice and the integrity of human freedom. In the last analysis, the way in which God's guidance of His creation interfaces with human freedom is unknown to us. I am convinced that God who made us with will and freedom woos us by His grace and condemns people only because of their own willfulness and unbelief. The only alternatives are to suppose that God is going to force all to be saved, whether they want to be or not; or that God, in a choosey way, is going to save some favorites but deliberately withhold salvation from others. I cannot find either of these views consistent with the full range of biblical teaching. Predestination is an assurance of God's redemptive love. There has never been a time, not even before creation, when God has not shown redemptive love for His creation. Whatever else predestination means, it assures us
that God takes the initiative in relation to creation and that God pursues us with redemptive love. See Election ; Salvation .
Bill Hendricks
Easton's Bible Dictionary - Predestination
This word is properly used only with reference to God's plan or purpose of salvation. The Greek word rendered "predestinate" is found only in these six passages, Acts 4:28 ; Romans 8:29,30 ; 1 Corinthians 2:7 ; Ephesians 1:5,11 ; and in all of them it has the same meaning. They teach that the eternal, sovereign, immutable, and unconditional decree or "determinate purpose" of God governs all events. This doctrine of predestination or election is beset with many difficulties. It belongs to the "secret things" of God. But if we take the revealed word of God as our guide, we must accept this doctrine with all its mysteriousness, and settle all our questionings in the humble, devout acknowledgment, "Even so, Father: for so it seemed good in thy sight."
For the teaching of Scripture on this subject let the following passages be examined in addition to those referred to above; Genesis 21:12 ; Exodus 9:16 ; 33:19 ; Deuteronomy 10:15 ; 32:8 ; Joshua 11:20 ; 1 Samuel 12:22 ; 2 Chronicles 6:6 ; Psalm 33:12 ; 65:4 ; 78:68 ; 135:4 ; Isaiah 41:1-10 ; Jeremiah 1:5 ; Mark 13:20 ; Luke 22:22 ; John 6:37 ; 15:16 ; 17:2,6,9 ; Acts 2:28 ; 3:18 ; 4:28 ; 13:48 ; 17:26 ; Romans 9:11,18,21 ; 11:5 ; Ephesians 3:11 ; 1 Thessalonians 1:4 ; 2 th 2:13 ; 2 Timothy 1:9 ; Titus 1:2 ; 1 Peter 1:2 . (See DECREES OF GOD; ELECTION .)
Hodge has well remarked that, "rightly understood, this doctrine (1) exalts the majesty and absolute sovereignty of God, while it illustrates the riches of his free grace and his just displeasure with sin.
It enforces upon us the essential truth that salvation is entirely of grace. That no one can either complain if passed over, or boast himself if saved.
It brings the inquirer to absolute self-despair and the cordial embrace of the free offer of Christ.
In the case of the believer who has the witness in himself, this doctrine at once deepens his humility and elevates his confidence to the full assurance of hope" (Outlines).
Charles Spurgeon's Illustration Collection - Predestination
They that talk of nothing but predestination, and will not proceed in the way of heaven till they be satisfied on that point, do as a man that would not come to London, unless at his first step he might set his foot upon the top of St. Paul's.– The Table Talk of John Selden.
Baker's Evangelical Dictionary of Biblical Theology - Predestination
The Concept . Divine predestination means that God has a purpose that is determined long before it is brought to pass. It implies that God is infinitely capable of planning and then bringing about what he has planned, and Scripture speaks of him as doing this (Isaiah 14:24-27 ; 22:11 ; 37:26 ; 44:7-8 ; 46:8-10 ). Prophecy in its predictive mode is to be understood accordingly. God plans and makes his plans known, as he chooses, to his servants the prophets (Amos 3:7 ). God's purpose is one of love and grace (Deuteronomy 7:6-8 ; Isaiah 41:8-9 ), above all because in love he predestined what should come to pass in his plan to save and to restore sinful humanity through Christ (Ephesians 1:5 ). Colossians 1:26 speaks of this purpose as "the mystery that has been kept hidden for ages and generations, but now is disclosed." This implies that all that is in God's good purpose for us, individually or as part of the people of God, is by God's initiative and thus is a work of grace, something that we could never instigate or deserve ( Deuteronomy 9:4-6 ; 2 Timothy 1:9 ).
God's Predestining Purpose . From the call of Abraham (Genesis 12:3 ) his descendants, in particular the progeny of Jacob/Israel, are predestined to fulfill the purpose that God has for them (Psalm 105:5-10 ). They are to be seen in the world as his people (Deuteronomy 7:6 ; Psalm 33:11-12 ), holy and obedient to him, living to his praise (Isaiah 43:21 ), a priestly nation bringing the knowledge of God to other nations (Exodus 19:5-6 ). The New Testament bears witness also to this purpose and foreknowledge of God concerning Israel (Romans 11:2 ).
It is also made clear in the Old Testament in a number of ways that the purpose of God embraces all nations. He has foreordained it when a nation is used to chasten Israel and then when a Gentile ruler sets them free (Isaiah 10:5-6 ; 44:28-45:1 ). Yet irrespective of Israel Yahweh has a plan determined for the whole world as his hand is stretched out over all nations (Isaiah 14:27 ). God "determined the times set" for the different nations "and the exact places where they should live" (Acts 17:26 ). In relation to the nations the word of the Lord in Isaiah 46:10 is, "I make known the end from the beginning, from ancient times, what is still to come. I say: My purpose will stand, and I will do all that I please."
Predetermined also, and thus mentioned variously in the prophets, is the purpose of God to be fulfilled in a Messiah of the house of David (Isaiah 9:6-7 ; 11:1-9 ; Jeremiah 23:5-6 ; Ezekiel 34:23-24 ; 37:24-28 ). It is also planned and foreordained that through Israel the knowledge of God should go out to the nations that they might be drawn to the worship of the Lord, a purpose to which the New Testament in turn bears witness (Galatians 3:8 ; Colossians 1:27 ). In the New Testament it is stressed repeatedly that the divine plan to be fulfilled in Christ was predestined. Paul speaks of the purpose in him as "God's secret wisdom, a wisdom that has been hidden and that God destined for our glory before time began" (1 Corinthians 2:7 ). "God's eternal purpose" it is called in Ephesians 3:11 . Although there was a human responsibility for the death of Jesus, all that happened was by "God's set purpose and foreknowledge" (Acts 2:23 ). So also was the resurrection of Jesus (Acts 2:31 ), and furthermore he is "appointed as judge of the living and the dead" (Acts 10:42 ).
The people of God in the New Testament, like Israel in the Old Testament, have a destiny to fulfill. They are appointed to have an inheritance (Matthew 25:34 ), to receive God's kingdom (Luke 12:32 ), to have "the hope of glory" (Colossians 1:27 ), which is "eternal life" (Acts 13:48 ). This appointed destiny for God's people can also be spoken of as their being chosen to be born anew (James 1:18 ), to gain salvation (2 Thessalonians 2:13 ), and to be adopted as children of God through Christ (Ephesians 1:5 ). In terms similar to those applied to Israel, the people of God in the New Testament are chosen to be holy, to be obedient, to live to God's praise (Ephesians 1:6,11 , 12,14 ; 2 Timothy 1:9 ; 1 Peter 1:2 ), and, going beyond anything in the Old Testament, "predestined to be conformed to the likeness" of God's Son (Romans 8:29 ). In practical terms Ephesians 2:10 says that "we are created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do."
Both Old and New Testaments also speak of individuals being predestined to fulfill a divine purpose. Jeremiah (1:5) is spoken of as being set apart before he was born to be a prophet to the nations. The servant of Yahweh in Isaiah 49:5 is conscious of being "formed in the womb to be his servant." In Genesis 25:23 a statement is made concerning the destinies of Jacob and Esau before they were born. In the New Testament Paul speaks of himself as set apart from birth to know God's Son and to make him known ( Galatians 1:15-16 ).
A final question that has concerned—and dividedChristian people down through the ages is whether some are predestined to life and salvation and others predestined to condemnation ("double predestination"). On certain things Scripture is clear: (1) we all, because of our sinfulness, deserve only God's condemnation; (2) our salvation is entirely because of God's grace and God's initiative; (3) the dominant emphasis is not on the fact that some are chosen by God and some are not, but on what is the purpose of God for those chosen: "to be conformed to the likeness of his Son" (Romans 8:29 ), or, "adoption as his children through Jesus Christ to the praise of his glorious grace" (Ephesians 1:5-6 ; NRSV ). What, then, should be said of Paul's argument in Romans 9-11 ? In those chapters much is said in positive terms of God's purpose, grace offered in turn to Jews and to Gentiles. Much also is said of human responsibility in the rejection of God's grace on the part of many in Israel and thus their failure to obtain God's salvation. The only verse that can be and is often taken to speak of predestination to condemnation is in the form of a hypothetical question (and one capable of very diverse interpretations, as the commentaries indicate): "What if God, choosing to show his wrath and make his power known, bore with great patience the objects of his wrathprepared for destruction?" (Romans 9:22 ). It would be hard to fit together a predestination to judgment and the operation of human free will and our responsibility. The failure to find the salvation offered to humankind by a gracious and loving God seems more wisely assigned to the way men and women "reject God's purpose for themselves" (Luke 12:30 ) rather than to a prior, unalterable rejection by God.
Francis Foulkes
See also Elect, Election ; Foreknowledge
Bibliography . G. C. Berkouwer, Divine Election ; P. Jacobs and H. Krienke, NIDNTT, 1:692-97; J. I. Packer, NBD, 1:435-38; 3:1262-64; H. H. Rowley, The Biblical Doctrine of Election .
Charles Buck Theological Dictionary - Predestination
Is the decree of God, whereby he hath for his own glory fore-ordained whatever comes to pass. The verb predestinate is of Latin original (praedestino, ) and signifies in that tongue to deliberate before-hand with one's self how one shall act, and, in consequence of such deliberation, to constitute, fore-ordain, and predetermine, where, when, how, and by whom any thing shall be done, and to what end it shall be done. So the Greek word whish exactly answers to the English word predestinate, and is rendered by it, signifies to resolve before-hand with one's self what shall be done, and before the thing resolved on is actually effected; to appoint it to some certain use, and direct it to some determinate end. This doctrine has been the occasion of considerable disputes and controversies among divines. On the one side it has be observed, that it is impossible to reconcile it with our ideas of the justice and goodness of God, that it makes God to be the author of sin, destroys moral distinction, and renders all our efforts useless. Predestinarians deny these consequences, and endeavour to prove this doctrine from the consideration of the perfections of the divine nature, and from Scripture testimony. If his knowledge, say they, be infinite and unchangeable, he must have known every thing from eternity.
If we allow the attribute of prescience, the idea of a decree must certainly be believed also, for how can an action that is really to come to pass be foreseen, if it be not determined? God knew every thing from the beginning; but this he could not have known if he had not so determined it. If, also, God be infinitely wise, it cannot be conceived that he would leave things at random, and have no plan. He is a God of order, and this order he observes as strictly in the moral as in the natural world, however conceived otherwise of God, is to degrade him, and is an insult to his perfections. If he, then, be wise and unchangeable, no new idea or purpose can arise in his mind; no alteration of his plan can take place, upon condition of his creatures acting in this or that way. To say that this doctrine makes him the author of sin, is not justifiable. We all allow omnipotence to be an attribute of Deity, and that by this attribute he could have prevented sin from entering into the world, had he chosen it; yet we see he did not. Now he is no more the author of sin in one case than the other. May we not ask, Why does he suffer those inequalities of Providence? Why permit whole nations to lie in idolatry or ages? Why leave men to the most cruel barbarities? Why punish the sins of the fathers in the children? In a word, Why permit the world at large to be subject to pains, crosses, losses, evils of every kind, and that for so many thousands of years? And, yet, will any dare call the Deity unjust? The fact is, our finite minds know but little of the nature of divine justice, or any other of his attributes. But, supposing there are difficulties in this subject (and what subject is without it?) the Scripture abounds with passages which at once prove the doctrine, Matthew 25:34 . Romans 8:29-30 . Ephesians 1:3 ; Ephesians 1:6 ; Ephesians 1:11 . 2 Timothy 1:9 . 2 Thessalonians 2:13 . 1 Peter 1:1-2 . John 6:37 . John 17:2-24 . Revelation 13:8 . Revelation 17:8 . Daniel 4:35 . 1 Thessalonians 5:19 . Matthew 11:26 . Exodus 4:21 . Proverbs 16:4 . Acts 13:48 . the moral uses of this doctrine are these.
1. It hides pride from Prayer of Manasseh 1:1 :
2. Excludes the idea of chance.
3. Exalts the grace of God.
4. Renders salvation certain.
5. Affords believers great consolation.
See DECREES OF GOD; NECESSITY; King, Toplady, Cooper, and Tucker, on Predestination; Burnet on 17 Art.; Whitby and Gill on the Five Points; Wesley's Pred. considered; Hill's Logica Wesleinsis; Edwards on the Will; Polhill on the Decrees; Edwards's Veritas Redux; Saurin's Sermons, vol. 5: ser. 13; Dr. William's Serm on Pred.
Webster's Dictionary - Predestination
(1):
(n.) The purpose of Good from eternity respecting all events; especially, the preordination of men to everlasting happiness or misery. See Calvinism.
(2):
(n.) The act of predestinating.
CARM Theological Dictionary - Predestine, Predestination
The doctrine that God has foreordained all things which will come to pass yet He is not the author of sin. He does, however, use sinful things for His glory and purpose. For example, the crucifixion was brought about by sinful men who unjustly put Jesus to death (Acts 4:27); yet, in that death, we are reconciled to God (Romans 5:10).
Predestination maintains that God is the one who decides who will be saved (Romans 9:16) and that it is not up to the desire of the person (John 1:13). God is the one who ordains the Christian into forgiveness, "...and as many as had been appointed to eternal life believed" (Acts 13:48). Also, "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 who He called, these He also justified; and whom He justified, these He also glorified" (Romans 8:29-30). Further verses to examine are Ephesians 1:4; Eph 1:11; Romans 9:1-33. (See also Election and Sovereignty.)
Fausset's Bible Dictionary - Predestination
(See ELECTION.) Acts 2:23; Acts 4:28, "whatsoever Thy hand and Thy counsel determined before to be done" (proorisen ). God has "predestinated" believers "unto the adoption of sons by Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will, to the praise of the glory of His grace." "He hath chosen us in Christ" out of the rest of the world, "predestinated" us to all things that secure the inheritance for us (Ephesians 1:4-5; Ephesians 1:11). "Predestination" refers to God's decree, embodied in God's "election" of us out of the mass; His grand end. in it being "the praise of the glory of His grace" (Ephesians 1:6; Ephesians 1:12; Ephesians 1:14). It is by virtue of our union to Christ, "foreordained before the foundation of the world" (1 Peter 1:20), that we are "predestinated" (2 Timothy 1:9).
Believers are viewed by God before the world's foundation as "IN CHRIST" with whom the Father makes the covenant (Revelation 13:8; Revelation 17:8; Ephesians 3:11), "according to the eternal purpose which He purposed in Christ Jesus our Lord." In 2 Thessalonians 2:13 the Greek for "chosen" (heilato ) means rather "taken for Himself"; He adopted them in His eternal purpose; "in (Greek) sanctification of (i.e. by) the Spirit" (by consecration to perfect holiness in Christ once for all, next by imparting it to them ever more and more). There was no doubt or contingency with God from the first. All was foreordained. God's glory and the believer's salvation are secured unchangeably. All pride on man's part is excluded; all is of God's unmerited grace. Yet the will of man is, in the sense of preserving our reponsibility, free. God alone knows how the two harmonize, His predestination and our freedom; it is enough for us they are both distinctly revealed.
At the same time fatalism is excluded, for God who predestinated believers to salvation as the end predestinated them to be conformed to the image of His Son as the means. We must make as sure of the means as of the end. Not to have the Spirit of Christ is to be none of His. Yet God's predestination is not founded on the believer's character, but the believer's character results from God's predestination (2 Thessalonians 2:13; Romans 8:9; Romans 8:28-30). God the Father gives us salvation by gratuitous election; the Son earns it by His blood-shedding; the Holy Spirit applies the Son's merits to the soul by the gospel word (Calvin): Galatians 1:4; Galatians 1:15; 1 Peter 1:2; the element IN (Greek) which we are elected is "sanctification of (consecration once for all by) the Spirit unto obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ" (the end aimed at by God as regards us).
Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible - Predestination
PREDESTINATION . The English word ‘predestinate’ in the AV [1] is, in the few cases in which it occurs ( Romans 8:29 ; Romans 8:36 , Ephesians 1:5 ; Ephesians 1:11 ), exchanged in the RV [2] for ‘foreordain,’ a return to the usage of the older Versions. The Gr. word ( proorizo ) conveys the simple idea of defining or determining beforehand (thus, in addition to above, in Acts 4:29 , 1 Corinthians 2:7 ). The change in rendering brings the word into closer relation with a number of others expressing the same, or related, meanings, as ‘foreknow’ (in pregnant sense, Acts 2:23 , Romans 8:29 ; Rom 11:2 , 1 Peter 1:2 ; 1 Peter 1:20 ), ‘determine’ ( Acts 17:26 ), ‘appoint’ ( 1 Peter 2:8 ), ‘purpose’ ( Ephesians 1:9 ), in the case of believers, ‘choose’ or ‘elect’ ( Ephesians 1:4 etc.). In the OT the idea is expressed by the various words denoting to purpose, determine, choose ( e.g. Isaiah 14:24-27 ; Isaiah 46:10-11 ), with the ahundance of phrases extolling the sovereignty and immutability of God’s counsel in all the spheres of His operation (see below; so in NT). The best clue to the Scripture conception will he found in tracing it as it appears in these different spheres of the Divine action.
1 . In its most general aspect, foreordination is coextensive with the sphere of God’s universal providence, is, in fact, but another name for the eternal plan, design, purpose, counsel of God, which executes itself in providence. The election of believers, to which ‘predestination’ is sometimes narrowed, is hut a specific case of the ‘purpose’ of Him ‘who worketh all things after the counsel of his will’ ( Ephesians 1:11 ). It is in this wider regard, accordingly, that foreordination must be studied first. It cannot be reasonably doubted that all Scripture OT and NT represents God as exercising in and over the world a providence that is absolutely universal. Nothing, great or small operations of nature or actions of men is left outside its scope. This does not happen blindly, but in accordance with a plan or purpose, equally all-embracing, which has existed from eternity. As Plato says in his Parmenides that nothing, not even the meanest object, is unpenetrated by the idea, so even the minutest details, and seemingly most casual happenings, of life (the numbering of hairs, the fall of a sparrow, Matthew 10:29-30 ) are included in the Divine providence. Free agency is not annulled; on the contrary, human freedom and responsibility are everywhere insisted on. But even free volitions, otherwise mere possibilities, are taken up in their place into this plan of God, and are made subservient to the accomplishment of His purposes. The Bible does not trouble itself with solving difficulties as to the relation of the Divine purpose to human freedom , but, in accordance with its fundamental doctrine of God as the free personal Creator of the world and absolutely sovereign Ruler in the realms both of matter and of mind, working through all causes, and directing everything to the wisest and holiest ends, it unhesitatingly sees His ‘hand’ and His ‘counsel’ in whatever is permitted to happen, good or bad ( Acts 2:28 ). It need not be said that there is nothing arbitrary or unjust in this ‘counsel’ of God; it can be conceived of only as the eternal expression of His wisdom, righteousness, and love.
Texts are almost superfluous in the case of a doctrine pervading the whole of Scripture, history, prophecy, psalm, epistle, but an instance or two may be given. The history is a continual demonstration of a Divine teleology ( e.g. Genesis 45:8 ; Genesis 50:20 ). God’s counsel stands, and cannot be defeated ( Psalms 33:1 ; Psalms 46:10-11 ); all that God wills He does ( Psalms 115:3 ; Psalms 135:6 , Daniel 4:35 ); it is because God purposed it, that it comes to pass ( Isaiah 14:24 ; Isaiah 14:27 ; Isaiah 37:26 ); God is the disposer of all events ( 2 Samuel 17:11-12 , Job 1:21 , Proverbs 16:33 ); man may devise his way, but it is the Lord who directs his steps ( Proverbs 16:9 ); even the hearts of men are under His control ( Proverbs 21:1 ); God sends to man good and evil alike ( Amos 3:6 , Isaiah 45:7 ). It has already been pointed out that the same doctrine is implied in the NT ( e.g. Acts 4:28 ; Acts 15:18 ; Acts 15:28 [3], Ephesians 1:11 , Revelation 4:11 etc.).
2 . A universal, all-pervading purpose of God in creation, providence, and human life, is thus everywhere assumed. The end of God’s purpose , as regards humanity, may be thought of as the establishing of a moral and spiritual kingdom, or Kingdom of God, in which God’s will should be done on earth, as it is done in heaven (cf. Matthew 6:10 ). But this end, now that sin has entered, can be attained only through a redemption . The centre of God’s purpose in our world, therefore, that which gives its meaning and direction to the whole Biblical history, and constitutes almost its sole concern, is the fact of redemption through Jesus Christ, and the salvation of men by Him. To this everything preceding the call of Abraham, the Covenant with Israel, the discipline and growing revelation of Law and Prophets leads up (on predestination here, cf. Genesis 18:18-19 , Revelation 14:1-66 ; Leviticus 20:26 , Isaiah 43:1 ; Isaiah 43:7 etc.); with this begins (or, more strictly, continues) the ingathering of a people to God from all nations and races of mankind, who, in their completeness, constitute the true Church of God, redeemed from among men ( Ephesians 5:25-27 , 1 Peter 2:9-10 , Revelation 1:5-6 ; 1618095955_86 etc.). The peculiar interest of the doctrine of foreordination, accordingly, in the NT, concentrates itself in the calling and salvation of those described as the ‘chosen’ or ‘elect’ of God to this great destiny ( Ephesians 1:4 etc.). The doctrine of foreordination (predestination) here coalesces practically with that of election (wh. see). Yet certain distinctions arise from a difference in the point of view from which the subject is contemplated.
Election, in the NT, as seen in the article referred to, relates to the eternal choice of the individual to salvation. As little as any other fact or event in life is the salvation of the believer regarded as lying outside the purpose or pre-determination of God; rather, an eternal thought of love on God’s part is seen coming to light in the saved one being brought into the Kingdom (2 Thessalonians 2:13 ; 2 Thessalonians 2:15 ). There is the yet deeper reason for seeing in the believer’s calling and salvation the manifestation of a Divine purpose, that, as lost in sin, he is totally incapable of effecting this saving change in himself. He owes his renewal, his quickening from spiritual death, to the gratuitous mercy of God ( Ephesians 2:1-8 ; see Regeneration). Every soul born into the Kingdom is conscious in its deepest moments that it is only of God’s grace it is there, and is ready to ascribe the whole glory of its salvation to God ( Revelation 7:10 ), and to trace back that salvation to its fountainhead in the everlasting counsel of God. Thus regarded, ‘election’ and ‘foreordination’ to salvation seem to have much the same meaning. Yet in usage a certain distinction is made. It may perhaps be stated thus, that ‘election’ denotes the Divine choice simply, while ‘foreordain’ has generally (in sense of ‘predestinate’) a reference to the end which the foreordination has in view. Thus, in Ephesians 1:4-5 ‘Even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world … having foreordained us unto adoption as sons’ (where ‘having foreordained,’ as Meyer rightly says, is not to be taken as prior to, but as coincident in point of time with, ‘he chose’); and in v. 11 ‘having been foreordained,’ i.e. to be ‘made a heritage,’ and this ‘to the end that we should be unto the praise of his glory’ (v. 12). In Romans 8:29 , again, where ‘foreknew’ which seems to take the place of ‘chose’ (it can hardly be foreknowledge of the faith which is the result of the later ‘calling’) comes before ‘foreordained,’ the latter has the end defined: ‘to be conformed to the image of his Son.’ Those ‘foreknown’ are afterwards described as God’s ‘elect’ (v. 33). This striking passage further shows how, in foreordaining the end, God likewise foreordains all the steps that lead to it (‘foreknew’ ‘foreordained’ ‘called’ ‘justified’ ‘glorified’). In 1 Peter 1:1 , on the other hand, ‘foreknowledge’ is distinguished from election still, however, in sense of pre-designation.
3 . God’s foreordination, or predestination, whether in its providential, historical, or personal saving aspects, is ever represented as a great mystery, the depths of the riches of the wisdom and knowledge of which (for this is the character of its mystery) man can never hope to fathom ( Rom Romans 11:33-34 ). When the Apostle, in Romans 9:1-33 , is dealing with objectors, he does not attempt a rationale of that which he admits to lie beyond his ken, but falls back on the unchallengeable sovereignty of God in acting as He wills ( Romans 9:14-16 ; Romans 9:19-23 ). The answer would be a poor one, were it not as absolutely assumed throughout that God’s is a will in which there can be no taint of unrighteousness, and that there is nothing in His action which does not admit of vindication to a perfect wisdom and goodness. If God shows His mercy on whom He wills, His right to do so cannot be assailed; if He hardens not arbitrarily, but through the fixed operation of ethical laws and glorifies His wrath in the destruction of the hardened, it is not without sufficient cause, and only after much long-suffering ( Romans 9:22 ). As little does the Apostle attempt to show the compatibility of the Divine foreordination with human freedom, but habitually assumes that the one is not, and cannot be, in violation of the other. The material with which the potter works ( Romans 9:21 ) is not, in this case, after all, mere inanimate clay, but beings who can ‘reply against God’ ( Romans 9:20 ), and are the objects of His long-suffering endurance ( Romans 9:22 ). Sovereignty is seen in this, that even those who refuse to be moulded to higher uses do not escape the hands of God, but are made to subserve His glory, even if it be in their destruction. Doubtless even here a purpose of God is to be recognized. Godet, who is not a rigid predestinarian, says of the instance in Romans 9:17
‘God might have caused Pharaoh to be born in a cabin, where his proud obstinacy would have been displayed with no less self-will, but without any historical consequence; on the other hand, he might have placed on the throne of Egypt at that time a weak, easy-going man, who would have yielded at the first shock. What would have happened? Pharaoh in his obscure position would not have been less arrogant and perverse, out Israel would have gone forth from Egypt without çclat ’ (on Romans 9:17-18 ).
Only in this sense, of those wilfully hardened and persistently obdurate, is it permissible to speak if the language should be employed at all of a decree of reprobation . Scripture itself, with all its emphasis on foreordination, never speaks of a foreordination to death, or of a reprobation of human beings apart from their own sins. See Reprobate. Its foreordination is reserved for life, blessing, sonship, inheritance.
James Orr.
Hastings' Dictionary of the New Testament - Predestination
1. Context.-Predestination in its widest reference, as attributed to God, is ‘His eternal purpose, according to the counsel of His will, whereby, for His own glory, He hath foreordained whatsoever comes to pass’ (The Shorter Catechism, A. 7). The word ‘predestinate’ appears nowhere in the AV_ of the OT, and in the NT it has now disappeared, having given place to ‘foreordain’ in the RV_ in the four places where the AV_ had it (Romans 8:29-30, Ephesians 1:5; Ephesians 1:11). ‘Foreordained’ of the AV_ has also given place to ‘foreknown’ in the RV_ of 1 Peter 1:20 (where the Gr. is προεγνωσμένου. See Foreknowledge). ‘Foreordain’ in the passages referred to above, and also in Acts 4:28 (AV_ ‘determined before’), 1 Corinthians 2:7 (AV_ ‘ordained’), renders προορίζειν, the tense employed in these six instances being the aorist, as befitted a purpose of the Divine mind from eternity. The simple ὁρίζειν occurs similarly with a kindred meaning (Luke 22:22 : κατὰ τὸ ὡρισμένον; Acts 2:23 : τῇ ὡρισμένῃ βουλῇ; cf. Acts 10:42; Acts 17:26; Acts 17:31, Ephesians 1:3-8).
2. Connotation.-Election and predestination belong to the purpose of grace cherished in the Divine mind from all eternity; and as far as salvation is concerned they are the expression of the entire dependence of sinful man upon the grace of God from the beginning to the end. They are included together by St. Paul among the spiritual blessings bestowed upon believers; and the two transactions are regarded as taking place before the foundation of the world (Ephesians 1:4-5). Election has in view the persons who are to be the objects of Divine blessing; predestination the privileges and blessings which are to be their portion (Romans 8:29-30, Ephesians 1:4-5). Foreknowledge, (πρόγνωσις, 1 Peter 1:2; cf. Romans 8:29; 1 Peter 1:20) belongs to the same purpose of grace, and is spoken of by St. Paul as the first step in the Divine plan of salvation, for it is those whom God ‘foreknew’ whom He also ‘foreordained’ to be conformed to the image of His Son. The word ‘chose’ (εἴλατο) in 2 Thessalonians 2:13 includes ‘foreknew’ and ‘foreordained’ of Romans 8:29, and has itself apparently the force of ‘elected’ (ἐξελέξατο).
3. Predestination in the moral world.-It belongs to the very nature of God that He should have a counsel or purpose which embraces all things from the beginning to the end, and that this counsel shall be assuredly accomplished. This is again and again declared in Scripture: ‘The Lord hath made all things for himself; yea, even the wicked for the day of evil’ (Proverbs 16:4); ‘My counsel shall stand, and I will do all my pleasure’ (Isaiah 46:10). St. Paul affirms this truth when he speaks of ‘the purpose of him who worketh all things after the counsel of his will’ (Ephesians 1:11). Not only the good but the evil of the world comes under the Divine predestinating purpose, for the evil as well as the good is known beforehand to the Omniscient (Acts 15:18). ‘In him we live, and move, and have our being’ (Acts 17:28), and every act of man, whatever its motive, is performed with bodily life and strength, with faculties and powers which He has supplied, and continues to supply, to the best and to the worst, to the noblest and the most depraved. Whilst not Himself the author of sin, He not only suffers the evil designs and wicked purposes of men, but uses them (and by using them shows that He purposed to use them from all eternity) for ends of His own, even the loftiest and holiest of which men can form any conception. The death of Christ was an essential element in the Divine plan of redemption. To bring to pass the death of Christ He made use of the hatred of the Jews, the baseness of the betrayer, and the culpable weakness of the Roman governor. The first Christians discerned and acknowledged this as they lifted up their united voice in prayer to God and said: ‘Of a truth in this city against thy holy Servant Jesus, whom thou didst anoint, both Herod and Pontius Pilate, with the Gentiles and the peoples of Israel, were gathered together, to do whatsoever thy hand and thy counsel foreordained to come to pass’ (ὄσα ἡ χείρ σου καὶ ἡ βουλὴ προώρισεν γενέσθαι, Acts 4:27 f.). And St. Peter declared the same truth to the Jewish multitudes on the Day of Pentecost: ‘Him being delivered up by the determinate counsel and foreknowledge of God, ye by the hand of lawless men did crucify and slay’ (τῇ ὡρισμένῃ βουλῇ καὶ προγνώσει τοῦ θεοῦ, Acts 2:23). It was in language no less strong that the Lord Himself predicted His betrayal and death: ‘The Son of man indeed goeth, as it hath been determined (κατὰ τὸ ὡρισμένον, Luke 22:22): but wce unto that man through whom he is betrayed.’ We also read that He showed ‘unto his disciples, how that he must go unto Jerusalem, and suffer many things of the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and the third day be raised up’ (Matthew 16:21). These passages ‘combine to show that not only in the physical world, which is generally admitted to be subject in all its provinces to the absolute control and regulation of the Almighty, but also in the moral world, all circumstances and events, dependent though they may be on the voluntary actions of His intelligent creatures, are nevertheless pre-arranged and predetermined by Him; or, in other words, that whatsoever God does by His own personal agency in any department of the universe, and whatsoever He permits to be done by the agency of His rational creatures, is done or permitted by Him purposely and designedly, in accordance with his own determinate counsels, and for the accomplishment of His own contemplated ends’ (Crawford, Mysteries of Christianity, p. 303).
4. St. Paul’s view of predestination and salvation.-Predestination, however, in its bearing upon salvation finds its great exponent in the apostle Paul. That God has foreordained particular persons from all eternity to salvation and eternal life, that He has provided for them the means to that salvation in the work of Christ and the gracious ministry of the Holy Spirit, and that He bestows upon them grace to persevere to the end, is especially the teaching of St. Paul. Here, again, as in his teaching upon election, St. Paul follows up the teaching of the Lord. ‘No man can come to me,’ says Jesus, ‘except the Father which sent me draw him: and I will raise him up in the last day’ (John 6:44). ‘My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me.… My Father, which hath given them unto me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father’s hand’ (John 10:27; John 10:29). ‘All that which the Father giveth me shall come unto me’ is, as the older divines would have put it, an article in the Covenant of Redemption between the Father and the Son in the counsels of eternity; ‘and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out’ is an article in the Covenant of Grace wherein the offer of a free and a full salvation is made to all (John 6:37). It is this teaching which St. Paul casts into his own more philosophical moulds and expounds in language which has not only passed into the vocabulary of theology, but even become familiar in the religious speech of many types of evangelical Christians. ‘We know,’ he says in a characteristic utterance, ‘that to them that love God all things work together for good, even to them that are called according to his purpose. For whom he foreknew, he also foreordained to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren’ (Romans 8:28-29). The sovereignty in which St. Paul here reposes such confidence is the sovereignty of a God of grace and faithfulness; and he is confident that He who began a good work in him and his fellow-believers ‘will perfect it until the day of Jesus Christ’ (Philippians 1:6). The end to which God ‘foreordained’ those whom He ‘foreknew’ is conformity to the image of His Son, that they should be sons of God after His likeness of love and holiness here and dignity and glory above. This end is that which apostolic teaching always has in view, and no other: the apostles have nothing to say of predestination to wrath or destruction (cf. 1 Thessalonians 1:2-5, 2 Thessalonians 2:13, 2 Timothy 1:9; 1 Peter 1:1-2).
In the opening passage of the Epistle to the Ephesians St. Paul sets forth in still greater detail this great doctrine (Romans 1:4; Ephesians 1:11-12). It is ‘the saints which are at Ephesus and the faithful in Christ Jesus’ who are the objects of this Divine choice and blessing, persons who are believing men and women (τοῖς πιστοῖς) and Christians indeed (τοῖς ἁγίοις). The benefits bestowed upon them in common with the Apostle are enumerated as ‘redemption,’ ‘forgiveness of sins,’ ‘holiness,’ ‘adoption’ as sons of God, ‘a heavenly inheritance,’ and they comprise ‘every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ’-benefits not merely offered but actually enjoyed, and that in accordance with the purpose of God before the foundation of the world. The Divine choice rested upon them and took effect in them not because of their merits or attainments, not because God foresaw in them a holiness and a faith marking them out as recipients of eternal favour and blessing, but ‘according to the good pleasure of his will, to the praise of the glory of his grace.’ They were chosen not because of foreseen holiness and blamelessness, but ‘in order that they should be holy and without blemish.’ If we adopt the punctuation which connects ‘in love’ (at the close of Ephesians 1:4) with ‘having foreordained’ (at the commencement of Ephesians 1:5), and which has some textual authority, we should hold that it was in love that He foreordained them, moved by ‘an “unseen universe” of reasons and causes wholly beyond our discovery’ (H. C. G. Moule, Cambridge Bible, ‘Ephesians,’ 1886, p. 48). Whatever the grounds of God’s predestinating purpose, they did not lie in any merits or qualifications of theirs, for they were called ‘not according to their works, but according to his own purpose and grace before the world began’ (2 Timothy 1:9). Election is a spontaneous act of God’s favour and grace, uncalled for by anything in the objects of it moving Him thereto. Before the ages of time God foreordained the glory of the saints, and with a view to that consummation He purposed both creation and redemption (1 Corinthians 2:7 with T. S. Evans’ note in Speaker’s Com. iii. [1]).
Whilst St. Paul in speaking of God’s predestinating purpose towards the saints calls them ‘vessels of mercy which he afore prepared unto glory’ (Romans 9:23), he is careful not to attribute to the immediate agency of God ‘the destruction’ which overtakes the ‘vessels of wrath’ (Romans 9:22). These the Apostle describes as ‘fitted unto destruction,’ whom God ‘endured with much longsuffering’; and he regards them as bringing upon themselves by their obstinacy and continued sinfulness the natural penalty of their guilt, the just judgment of God. The issue of glory for the saints proceeds from God’s predestinating purpose ‘according to the good pleasure of his will’ and without any foresight of merit on their part; the issue of destruction for the wicked proceeds from the rejection of offered grace and their persistence in transgression and sin. The distinction is that set forth by St. Paul when he says: ‘The wages of sin is death; but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord’ (Romans 6:23).
That God’s sovereignty in predestination is exercised consistently with man’s perfect liberty to choose is an antinomy which it is impossible for us to reconcile, but which, nevertheless, stands out clear in the teaching of St. Paul. In Romans 9:20-21 St. Paul appeals to one side of the antinomy and affirms the Divine sovereignty by reference to the figure of the potter; and in Romans 10:11-15 he exhibits the other side when he affirms the universality and freeness of the gospel offer, saying, ‘Whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved. How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher?’ Whilst St. Paul, as we have seen, affirms the doctrine of absolute predestination to life, he asserts no less clearly the truth of human responsibility. Underlying all his exhortations to holiness, and all his presentations of gospel privilege and blessing, there is the assumption of the freedom of the human will to avail itself of offered grace or to refuse it, to put forth effort or to remain inactive. Whilst the kindling of the Divine life in the soul through the exercise of faith in Christ is of sovereign grace (Ephesians 2:8), the increase and fruitfulness of the Divine life through prayer and service depends upon the same grace, as St. Paul exhorts: ‘Work out your own salvation with fear and trembling; for it is God which worketh in you both to will and to work, for his good pleasure’ (Philippians 2:12-13).
5. Predestination in Christian experience.-The doctrine of predestination has the analogy of Christian experience to support it. Every Christian man is ready to acknowledge that there was some power at work for his salvation before his own freewill. ‘We love,’ says St. John, ‘because he first loved us’ (1 John 4:19). It is He who, through the Holy Spirit, by the use of the means of grace, quickens into spiritual life men who are dead in trespasses and sins. And there are multitudes who acknowledge their experience to have been that of Lydia, ‘whose heart the Lord opened, to give heed unto the things which were spoken by Paul’ (Acts 16:14). In Christian experience there is the conviction of this gracious influence which has been beforehand with us in showing us the guilt of sin and leading us to Christ for salvation, but there is also the consciousness of moral responsibility, requiring from us the constant exercise of faith and the diligent use of all the means of grace. ‘I could no more,’ says Erskine of Linlathen, writing to Thomas Chalmers from Herrnhut (Letters, 1800-1840, ed. Hanna, 1877), ‘separate the belief of predestination from my idea of God, than I could separate the conviction of moral responsibility from my own consciousness. I do not, to be sure, see how these two things coincide, but I am prepared for my own ignorance on these points. We know things, not absolutely as they are in themselves, but relatively as they are to us and to our practical necessities.’ There we must be content to leave the antinomy, believing that though it is beyond our limited powers to reconcile, it is reconciled in the mind of the All-knowing and Eternal God.
6. Practical applications.-The doctrine of predestination has practical applications full of comfort and encouragement. A reasonable assurance of salvation finds in the eternal decree, whose sole cause is the good pleasure and eternal will of God, its most certain and abiding ground. To have a well-grounded persuasion, through the fruit of the Spirit and the evidences of the new life, that one is of the number of those whom God foreknew and foreordained to be conformed to the image of His Son, cannot fail on the one hand to fill one with gratitude and humility, and on the other to stimulate one to the pursuit of holiness and all the graces of the Christian life. The belief that God in His predestinating purpose has His elect-known to Him when unknown to man-in every community and every congregation where Christ is preached, is an encouragement to faithful ministry, as it was to St. Paul when in a vision of the night the Lord said to him: ‘I have much people in this city’ (Acts 18:10). ‘The doctrine of this high mystery of predestination,’ says the Westminster Confession (ch. iii. 8), ‘is to be handled with special prudence and care, that men attending to the will of God revealed in His word, and yielding obedience thereunto, may, from the certainty of their effectual vocation, be assured of their eternal election. So shall this doctrine afford matter of praise, reverence, and admiration of God, and of humility, diligence, and abundant consolation to all that sincerely obey the Gospel.’
Literature.-C. Hodge, Systematic Theology, 1872, i. 535 ff.; T. J. Crawford, Mysteries of Christianity, 1874, p. 291 ff.; John Forbes, Predestination and Freewill, 1878; J. B. Mozley, Predestination2, 1878; B. Jowett, The Epistles of St. Paul to the Thessalonians, Galatians, and Romans, 1894, ii. 870; J. Drummond, Studies in Christian Doctrine, 1907, p. 463; T. Haering, The Christian Faith, 1913, p. 788ff.
T. Nicol.

Sentence search

Predestinarians - Those who believe in Predestination. ...
See Predestination
Predestinarian - ) One who believes in or supports the doctrine of Predestination. ) Of or pertaining to Predestination; as, the predestinarian controversy
Foreordination - See Predestination ...
...
Predestiny - ) Predestination
Foreordination - See Predestination
Lambeth Articles - See Predestination
Foreknowledge - See Predestination
Freewill - See Predestination
Clay - See Potter and Predestination
Prescience of God - The doctrine of Predestination is founded on the prescience of God, and on the supposition of all futurity being present to him. Properly speaking, indeed, prescience follows that of Predestination; for if we allow that God from all eternity foresaw all things, he must thus have foreseen them in consequence of his permitting or fore-appointing them. ...
See FOREKNOWLEDGE, Predestination
Foreordination - ) Previous ordination or appointment; predetermination; Predestination
Sublapsarians - Those who hold that God permitted the first man to fall into transgression without absolutely predetermining his fall; or that the decree of Predestination regards man as fallen, by an abuse of that freedom which Adam had, into a state in which all were to be left to necessary and unavoidable ruin, who were not exempted from it by Predestination
Thomaism - with respect to Predestination and grace
Life, Book of - Figurative expression in Holy Writ (Apocalypse 21) for Predestination, which signifies God's foreknowledge of the elect. See Predestination
Destiny - See Election ; Fate ; Predestination
Predestinator - ) One who holds to the doctrine of Predestination; a predestinarian
Lambeth Articles - Nine articles drawn up at Lambeth, England, 1595, intended to define the Calvinistic doctrine with regard to Predestination, justification, etc
Articles, Lambeth - Nine articles drawn up at Lambeth, England, 1595, intended to define the Calvinistic doctrine with regard to Predestination, justification, etc
Reprobation - ) The Predestination of a certain number of the human race as reprobates, or objects of condemnation and punishment
Reprobation - ...
See ELECTION and Predestination
Predestination - They that talk of nothing but Predestination, and will not proceed in the way of heaven till they be satisfied on that point, do as a man that would not come to London, unless at his first step he might set his foot upon the top of St
Fate - See Election and Predestination
Elect, Election - The view of election is especially held by Calvinists who also hold to the doctrine of Predestination
Ordo Salutis - In the Reformed camp, the ordo solutis Isaiah 1:1-31) election, 2) Predestination, 3) calling, 4) regeneration, 5) faith, 6) repentance, 7) justification, 8) sanctification, and 9) glorification
Predestination - Predestination means that he ‘pre-destines’ what will happen – he sees, knows, plans, prepares, appoints and decides what will happen (Psalms 33:10-11; Proverbs 16:33; Isaiah 14:26-27; Isaiah 22:11; Isaiah 37:26-27; Acts 17:26-27; Romans 8:29-30; Ephesians 1:5-6; 1 Peter 1:20). ...
Divine will and human response...
God’s Predestination does not mean that people are the helpless victims of unalterable fate. ...
Predestination is concerned with the controlling will of God in all things, whether matters concerning the universe as a whole (Psalms 135:6-7; Hebrews 1:10-12), the nations of the world (Deuteronomy 7:6-8; Daniel 4:32) or individual people (Jeremiah 1:5; Acts 9:15). The particular aspect of Predestination that is concerned with God’s salvation of sinners through Christ is commonly referred to as election (Romans 8:29-30; Romans 8:33; Ephesians 1:4; 1 Peter 1:2; see ELECTION). Assurance of Predestination, far from making them self-satisfied, gives them purpose in life (Ephesians 1:4; Ephesians 2:10; 2 Thessalonians 2:13)
Doctrines of Grace - Let the poor trembler who is sincerely seeking Jesus, rest assured that the seemingly dreadful doctrines of election and Predestination are not one whit more terrible, and are far more sweetly fragrant
Molinists - He taught that the operations of divine grace were entirely consistent with the freedom of the human will; and introduced a new kind of hypothesis to remove the difficulties attending the doctrines of Predestination and liberty, and to reconcile the jarring opinions of Augustines, Thomists, Semi-Pelagians, and other contentious divines. He affirmed that the decree of Predestination to eternal glory was founded upon a previous knowledge and consideration of the merits of the elect; that the grace, from whose operation these merits are derived, is not efficacious by its own intrinsic power only, but also by the consent of our own will, and because it is administered in those circumstances in which the Deity, by that branch of his knowledge which is called scientia media, foresees that it will be efficacious
Life of Tre Believer: Interesting - I heard a gentleman assert that he could walk almost any number of miles when the scenery was good; but, he added, 'When it is flat and uninteresting, how one tires!' What scenery enchants the Christian pilgrim; the towering mountains of Predestination, the great sea of providence, the rocks of sure promise, the green fields of revelation, the river that makes glad the city of God, all these compose the scenery which surrounds the Christian, and at every step fresh sublimities meet his view
Arminianism - He opposed Calvin's doctrines of Predestination, election, the teaching that Christ died for the elect only, and that grace benefits only the elect
Orange, Council of - Its deliberations were against the errors of the Semi-Pelagians concerning original sin, grace, and Predestination
Predestination - "Predestination" refers to God's decree, embodied in God's "election" of us out of the mass; His grand end. God alone knows how the two harmonize, His Predestination and our freedom; it is enough for us they are both distinctly revealed. Yet God's Predestination is not founded on the believer's character, but the believer's character results from God's Predestination (2 Thessalonians 2:13; Romans 8:9; Romans 8:28-30)
Foreknowledge - God’s foreknowledge is according to his plan, and therefore may be another word for Predestination (Acts 2:23; Romans 8:29; Hebrews 11:40; see Predestination)
Doctrines: Ultra-Calvinistic - Divine Predestination is cried up but human responsibility is rejected
Election - ) Divine choice; Predestination of individuals as objects of mercy and salvation; - one of the "five points" of Calvinism
Eriugena, John Scotus - In addition he wrote commentaries on the Gospel of Saint John and on the works of Pseudo-Dionysius, a work on Predestination and probably one on the Eucharist, a philosophical work on the division of nature, a treatise on the soul, and Isome poems
Sentences, Book of the - The first book treats of God and the Trinity, Providence, Predestination, and evil; the second, or creation, the angels, the fall, grace, and sin; the third, of the Incarnation, Redemption, the virtues, and commandments; the fourth, of the Sacraments and the four last things
Remonstrants - They are also called Arminians, because they maintained the doctrines respecting Predestination and grace, which were embraced and defended by James Harmenson or Arminius, an eminent Protestant divine, and a native of Holland, who was born in 1560, and died in 1609. While at the university of Geneva, he studied under Beza, by whom he was instructed in the doctrines of Calvin; and having been judged by Martin Lydius, professor of divinity at Franeker, a proper person to refute a work in which the Calvinistic doctrine of Predestination had been attacked by some ministers of Delft, he undertook the task. The result of his inquiries on this, and other subjects connected with it, was, that, thinking the doctrine of Calvin with respect to free will, Predestination, and grace, too severe, he expressed his doubts respecting them in the year 1591, and at length adopted the religious system of those who extend the love of God, and the merits of his Son, to all mankind. The distinguishing tenets of the Remonstrants may be said to consist chiefly in the different light in which they view the subjects of the five points, or in the different explanation which they give to them, and comprised in the five following articles: Predestination, universal redemption, the operation of grace, the freedom of the will, and perseverance
Election - ...
See DECREE, and Predestination
Hincmar - Hincmar took a leading part in opposing the Predestination theories of Gottschalk
Methodist Bodies - The Methodists rejected the "stricter doctrines of Calvinism, Predestination, and reprobation," and accepted "the milder emphasis of Arminianism on repentance, faith, and holiness
Foreknowledge - Other terms such as “election” and “predestination” are closely related to foreknowledge. This Arminian view is called conditional Predestination , since the Predestination is conditioned on God's foreknowledge of the individual's acceptance or rejection of Christ. While Romans 8:29-30 are key verses in any discussion of God's foreknowledge, it is perhaps more correct to interpret these verses in terms of the doctrine of assurance rather than of Predestination. The doctrine of Predestination was developed in the reformed tradition in an attempt to solve problems raised by Paul's writings and by other biblical texts. See Knowledge ; Election ; Predestination
Calvinism - It emphasizes Predestination and salvation
Predestination - ...
Biblical Materials The English noun, Predestination , does not occur in the Bible. Study of these words shows that for a study of Predestination the key passages are Romans 8:1 ; Ephesians 1:1 ; and 1 Peter 1:1 . ...
The references to Predestination in Romans 8:29 and Romans 8:30 come in the midst of a section of Scripture on salvation and spiritual struggle. ...
In a discussion of election and Predestination, questions about Jacob and Esau (Romans 9:13 ) arise, as do questions about God “hardening Pharaoh's heart” (Romans 9:17-18 ). Predestination never eliminates human will. ...
Two special problems that arise in relation to Predestination are the place of Judaism (Romans 9-11 ) and of Judas (John 6:70-71 ) in the determination of God. The purpose of Predestination is to be conformed to goodness and to bear witness to God in Christ. Predestination is an assurance of God's redemptive love. Whatever else Predestination means, it assures us...
that God takes the initiative in relation to creation and that God pursues us with redemptive love
Predestination - -Predestination in its widest reference, as attributed to God, is ‘His eternal purpose, according to the counsel of His will, whereby, for His own glory, He hath foreordained whatsoever comes to pass’ (The Shorter Catechism, A. -Election and Predestination belong to the purpose of grace cherished in the Divine mind from all eternity; and as far as salvation is concerned they are the expression of the entire dependence of sinful man upon the grace of God from the beginning to the end. Election has in view the persons who are to be the objects of Divine blessing; Predestination the privileges and blessings which are to be their portion (Romans 8:29-30, Ephesians 1:4-5). Predestination in the moral world. Paul’s view of Predestination and salvation. -Predestination, however, in its bearing upon salvation finds its great exponent in the apostle Paul. This end is that which apostolic teaching always has in view, and no other: the apostles have nothing to say of Predestination to wrath or destruction (cf. ...
That God’s sovereignty in Predestination is exercised consistently with man’s perfect liberty to choose is an antinomy which it is impossible for us to reconcile, but which, nevertheless, stands out clear in the teaching of St. Paul, as we have seen, affirms the doctrine of absolute Predestination to life, he asserts no less clearly the truth of human responsibility. Predestination in Christian experience. -The doctrine of Predestination has the analogy of Christian experience to support it. Hanna, 1877), ‘separate the belief of Predestination from my idea of God, than I could separate the conviction of moral responsibility from my own consciousness. -The doctrine of Predestination has practical applications full of comfort and encouragement. ‘The doctrine of this high mystery of Predestination,’ says the Westminster Confession (ch. ; John Forbes, Predestination and Freewill, 1878; J. Mozley, Predestination2, 1878; B
Semipelagianism - According to Cassian and his followers ...
God's grace sometimes awaits man's free cooperation
the beginning of faith is in one's power
salvation, always supposing the assistance of grace, depends finally upon one's own will
there is no such thing as Predestination ante proevisa merita
grace is given to all, or when denied is withheld because God foresees one's evil use of it
These opinions became popular in southern Gaul and were defended by Vincent of Lerins and others
Sadducees - It is said also, that they rejected the Bible, except the Pentateuch; denied Predestination; and taught, thet God had made man absolute master of all his actions, without assistance to good, or restraint from evil
Predestine, Predestination - ...
Predestination maintains that God is the one who decides who will be saved (Romans 9:16) and that it is not up to the desire of the person (John 1:13)
Semi-Pelagians - That God did not dispense his grace to one more than another, in consequence of Predestination, 1:e
John Calvin - It is an exposition of his theological belief, including his doctrine of Predestination, and was the first definite and systematic formulation of Protestantism
Calvin, John - It is an exposition of his theological belief, including his doctrine of Predestination, and was the first definite and systematic formulation of Protestantism
Election of Grace - (See Predestination
Foreknowledge - " Foreknowledge is closely connected to election and Predestination and to God's sovereign rule of his universe. ...
The same juxtaposition of foreknowledge, election, and Predestination also applies to individual salvation. Wolf...
See also Elect, Election ; God ; Predestination ...
Bibliography
Decree - The equivalents are to be sought for under such headings as Election, Predestination, Providence, Reprobate
Predestination - Divine Predestination means that God has a purpose that is determined long before it is brought to pass. ...
A final question that has concerned—and dividedChristian people down through the ages is whether some are predestined to life and salvation and others predestined to condemnation ("double Predestination"). The only verse that can be and is often taken to speak of Predestination to condemnation is in the form of a hypothetical question (and one capable of very diverse interpretations, as the commentaries indicate): "What if God, choosing to show his wrath and make his power known, bore with great patience the objects of his wrathprepared for destruction?" (Romans 9:22 ). It would be hard to fit together a Predestination to judgment and the operation of human free will and our responsibility
Liberty - ...
See articles MATERIALISTS, Predestination, and Doddridge's Lec
Choice - And this point is of some importance in view of the use to which some passages of the NT have been put by those who have attempted to elaborate from them doctrines of election or Predestination. Stress is never laid chiefly on the election or Predestination of the Almighty, but on the fact that such and such are actually found among those whom God has culled for Himself, and who constitute His own people
Predestination - This doctrine of Predestination or election is beset with many difficulties
Basel, Confession of - Calvin's following writings are accepted is dogmatic: the "Catechism of Geneva," 1541; the "Consensus of Zurich," 1549, expounding Calvin's views on the sacraments; and the "Consensus of the Pastor of the Church of Geneva," 1552, proclaiming absolute Predestination
Reformed Churches, Confessions of the - Calvin's following writings are accepted is dogmatic: the "Catechism of Geneva," 1541; the "Consensus of Zurich," 1549, expounding Calvin's views on the sacraments; and the "Consensus of the Pastor of the Church of Geneva," 1552, proclaiming absolute Predestination
Decrees of God - Mahomet introduced into his Kiran the doctrine of absolute Predestination of the course of human affairs. ...
See NECESSITY, Predestination
Predestination - Predestination . The election of believers, to which ‘predestination’ is sometimes narrowed, is hut a specific case of the ‘purpose’ of Him ‘who worketh all things after the counsel of his will’ ( Ephesians 1:11 ). To this everything preceding the call of Abraham, the Covenant with Israel, the discipline and growing revelation of Law and Prophets leads up (on Predestination here, cf. The doctrine of foreordination (predestination) here coalesces practically with that of election (wh. God’s foreordination, or Predestination, whether in its providential, historical, or personal saving aspects, is ever represented as a great mystery, the depths of the riches of the wisdom and knowledge of which (for this is the character of its mystery) man can never hope to fathom ( Rom 1618095955_6 )
Election - ...
God’s activity in determining beforehand what will happen, particularly in relation to people’s destiny, is sometimes called Predestination. This Predestination originates in God himself, who acts according to his own will and purpose (Psalms 139:16; Isaiah 14:24; Isaiah 37:26; Isaiah 46:9-10; Matthew 25:34; Acts 2:23; Acts 4:27-28; Ephesians 1:5; Romans 8:28-30; 1 Thessalonians 5:9; see Predestination)
Providence - They see God at work in their own lives, lovingly controlling all their affairs in order to lead them to greater spiritual maturity (Romans 8:28; Philippians 4:12-13; James 1:2-4; see also Predestination; SUFFERING)
Marius Mercator, a Writer - Five of the books treat of Pelagianism, and the sixth of Predestination
Free Will - No doubt those who regard liberty as incompatible with Predestination may argue that Predestination is the plain doctrine of Scripture, but the conclusion that because Predestination is the doctrine of Scripture man cannot be free is their own, and is not taught in Scripture. ...
(b) Predestinarianism in some form or other we can hardly avoid accepting, if we believe in an ordered universe; and to resolve Predestination, in so far as rational and moral beings are concerned, into simple foreknowledge, does not materially, or at least very materially, help us
Book - ...
An image of God's book of Predestination to eternal life (Psalms 139:16; Psalms 87:6; Exodus 32:32; Daniel 12:1; Luke 10:20; Philippians 4:3; Revelation 13:8; Revelation 17:8; Revelation 21:27)
Elect - ELECT or ELECTION: (See Predestination
Liberty - On the freedom of man’s will, see Predestination, p
Decree - See articles Call, Election, and Predestination
Cameronists - " He was one of those who attempted to reconcile the doctrine of Predestination, as it had been taught at Geneva, and confirmed at Dort, with the sentiments of those who believe that God offers salvation to all mankind
Decree - See articles Call, Election, and Predestination
Arminians - Arminius had been educated in the opinions of Calvin; but, thinking the doctrine of that great man with regard to free will, Predestination, and grace, too severe, he began to express his doubts concerning them in the year 1591; and, upon farther enquiry, adopted the sentiments of those whose religious system extends the love of the Supreme Being and the merits of Jesus Christ to all mankind. The distinguishing tenets of the Arminians may be comprised in the five following articles relative to Predestination, universal redemption, the corruption of man, conversion, and perseverance, viz
Prayer - One has been grounded upon a supposed Predestination of all things which come to pass; and the argument is, that as this established predetermination of all things cannot be altered, prayer, which supposes that God will depart from it, is vain and useless. The answer which a pious predestinarian would give to this objection is, that the argument drawn from the Predestination of God lies with the same force against every other human effort, as against prayer; and that as God's predetermination to give food to man does not render the cultivation of the earth useless and impertinent, so neither does the Predestination of things shut out the necessity and efficacy of prayer. Those who have not these views of Predestination will answer the objection differently; for if the premises of such a Predestination as is assumed by the objection, and conceded in the answer, be allowed, the answer is unsatisfactory. ...
In this case either God's purpose must be denied, and then his threatenings are reduced to words without meaning; or the purpose must be allowed; in which case either prayer breaks in upon Predestination, if understood absolutely, or it is vain and useless. ...
Prayer is in Scripture made one of these conditions; and if God has established it as one of the principles of his moral government to accept prayer, in every case in which he has given us authority to ask, he has not, we may be assured, entangled his actual government of the world with the bonds of such an eternal Predestination of particular events, as either to reduce prayer to a mere form of words, or not to be able himself, consistently with his decrees, to answer it, whenever it is encouraged by his express engagements
Election - We should never speak of Predestination apart from this central truth. (1) Is not election the same thing as fatalism? Predestination does not negate the necessity for human repentance and faith; rather it establishes the possibility of both. (3) Does the Bible teach “double Predestination,” that God has selected some for damnation as well as some for salvation? There are passages (Romans 9:11-22 ; 2 Corinthians 2:15-16 ) which portray God as a potter who has molded both vessels of mercy and vessels of destruction
Reprobate - Predestination
Socinians - Original sin and absolute Predestination they esteem scholastic chimeras
Calvinism - that scheme of doctrine on Predestination and grace, which was taught by Calvin, the celebrated reformer, in the early part of the sixteenth century. His opinions are largely opened in the third book of his "Institutes:" "Predestination we call the eternal decree of God; by which he hath determined in himself what he would have to become of every individual of mankind. In the commencement of the following chapter he thus rejects the notion that Predestination is to be understood as resulting from God's foreknowledge of what would be the conduct of either the elect or the reprobate: "It is a notion commonly entertained, that God, foreseeing what would be the respective merits of every individual, makes a correspondent distinction between different persons; that he adopts as his children such as he fore-knows will be deserving of his grace; and devotes to the damnation of death others, whose dispositions he sees will be inclined to wickedness and impiety. This is the scheme of Predestination as exhibited by Calvin; and to the objection taken from justice, he replies, "They" (the objectors) "inquire by what right the Lord is angry with his creatures who had not provoked him by any previous offence; for that to devote to destruction whom he pleases, is more like the caprice of a tyrant, than the lawful sentence of a judge. If all whom the Lord predestinates to death are, in their natural condition, liable to the sentence of death, what injustice do they complain of receiving from him?" To this Calvin very fairly states the obvious rejoinder made in his day; and which the common sense of mankind will always make,— "They object, Were they not by the decree of God antecedently predestinated to that corruption which is now stated as the cause of their condemnation? When they perish in their corruption, therefore, they only suffer the punishment of that misery into which, in consequence of his Predestination, Adam fell, and precipitated his posterity with him. With this doctrine he again attempts to reconcile the demerit of men: "Their perdition depends on the divine Predestination in such a manner, that the cause and matter of it are found in themselves. He exhorts us "rather to contemplate the evident cause of condemnation, which is nearer to us, in the corrupt nature of mankind, than search after a hidden and altogether incomprehensible one, in the Predestination of God. ) "Of Predestination. Several of the brightest and most acute wits in Europe occupied themselves in sublimating to the height of extravagance the two kindred branches of Predestination,—the eternal and absolute election of certain men to everlasting glory, and the reprobation of the rest of mankind to endless punishment, without regard in the divine mind to the foreseen faith of one class or to the foreseen unbelief of the other
Praedestinatus, an Author - On the other hand, those who had received this Predestination might neglect and despise all righteousness, yet the gate of life would be opened to them without knocking, while against others who knocked, nay shouted, for admission, it would remain firmly closed
Swedenborgians - ...
He denies the doctrine of atonement, or vicarious sacrifice; together with the doctrines of Predestination, unconditional election, justification by faith alone, the resurrection of the material body, &c
Predestination - ...
See DECREES OF GOD; NECESSITY; King, Toplady, Cooper, and Tucker, on Predestination; Burnet on 17 Art
Blindness - This conception belongs to the circle of Jewish religious ideas-the prophetic doctrine of the absoluteness of God, the Pharisaic teaching of Divine Predestination
Necessitarians - ...
The doctrine of necessity is nearly connected with that of Predestination, which, of late years, has assumed a form very different from that which it formerly possessed: for, instead of being considered as a point to be determined almost entirely by the sacred writings, it has, in the hands of a number of able writers, in a great measure resolved itself into a question of natural religion, under the head of the philosophical liberty or necessity of the will; or, whether all human actions are, or are not, necessarily determined by motives arising from the character which God has impressed on our minds, and the train of circumstances amidst which his providence has placed us? The Calvinistic doctrine of Predestination is, that "God, for his own glory, hath foreordained whatsoever comes to pass
Call, Calling - See Election ; Predestination
Calvinists - These are, Predestination, particular redemption, total depravity, effectual calling, and the certain perseverance of the saints. They do not consider Predestination, however, as affecting the agency or accountableness of creatures, or as being to them any rule of conduct. With respect to the conditional Predestination admitted by the Arminians, they say that an election upon faith or good works foreseen, is not that of the Scriptures; for that election is there made the cause of faith and holiness, and cannot, for this reason, be the effect of them. ...
With regard to Predestination to death, they say, if the question be, Wherefore did God decree to punish those who are punished? the answer is, On account of their sins
Prosper, Saint, a Native of Aquitaine - The letter of Prosper to Augustine describes the view taken at Marseilles and elsewhere concerning Predestination. Augustine on Predestination, with answers to each. John Cassian had written a book entitled Spiritual Conferences ( Collationes ), 17 in number, in the 13th of which, entitled de Protectione Dei, he condemned severely Augustine's doctrine on Predestination
Pharisees - With the Essenes they held absolute Predestination, and with the Sadducees free will; but how they reconciled these seemingly incompatible doctrines is no where sufficiently explained
Reprobate - Paul and the writer of the Epistle to the Hebrews in these passages are not presenting a reasoned system of Predestination and election, but rather dealing with what may happen under the stress and strain of temptation and trial in the ordinary tenor of the Christian life, and emphasizing the need of diligence and watchfulness, if they and their readers would make their calling and election sure
Sadducees - 14 [10]); and twice says they rejected "Fate" (predestination) to dissociate God from evil and to assert the human free choice of good or evil (War 2
Evil (2) - ...
The reality of Christ’s Libertarianism is not disproved by certain passages in the Gospels which seem at first sight to speak the language of Predestination, or even of Determinism (John 6:37; John 6:39, Matthew 26:24 etc. Predestination was not so held in Christ’s time as to exclude free will
Decrees - Sprinkle...
See also Command, Commandment ; Law ; Predestination ; Requirement ...
Bibliography
Glory - Passing over the strictly doxological passages, we note that ‘glory’ is given to God (or to Christ) (a) by the character or conduct of men: by the strength of their trust (Romans 4:20), in eating, drinking, and all that they do (1 Corinthians 10:31), by thanksgiving (2 Corinthians 4:15), brotherly charity (2 Corinthians 8:19), the fruits of righteousness (Philippians 1:11), repentance and confession of sin (Revelation 16:9); (b) by the results of God’s own saving work, the Exaltation of Christ (Philippians 2:11), the faithful fulfilment of His promises in Christ (2 Corinthians 1:20), the reception of both Jews and Gentiles into the Church (Romans 15:7), the Predestination of believers to the adoption of children (Ephesians 1:6), the whole accomplishment of that Predestination, by faith, the sealing of the Spirit, and final redemption (Ephesians 1:14), by the marriage of the Lamb, the final and eternal union of Christ with the redeemed, sanctified, and glorified Church
Hardening - If the Potter is a God of infinite love, it is well with the clay, as Rabbi Ben Ezra sees; but if the Potter is a God who for His mere good pleasure makes ‘vessels of wrath,’ who would care to worship Him?...
‘We must affirm that freedom is the fixed point that must be held, because it is an inalienable certainty of experience, and that Predestination can be only such as is consistent with it; else there is no rational and responsible life. … Predestination in Other fields of existence need not trouble us; but perplexity and anguish unutterable enter if we admit the supposition, or even the genuine suspicion that God has so foreordained our actions as to take away our freedom
Providence - See Election ; God ; Predestination
Jansenists - A sect of the Roman Catholics in France who followed the opinions of Jansenius (bishop of Ypres, and doctor of divinity of the universities of Louvain and Douay, ) in relation to grace and Predestination
Augustine - The unrestricted capability of men's own free will is amply sufficient for all these things, and therefore no necessity exists for asking of God those things which we are able of ourselves to obtain; the gifts of grace being only necessary to enable men to do that more easily and completely which yet they could do themselves though more slowly and with greater difficulty; and that they are perfectly free creatures," in opposition to all the current notions of Predestination and reprobation. Plaifere in his "Appello Evangelium" has given the following as the substance of that opinion of the order of Predestination of which "many do say that St. Augustine had thus in a great degree new moulded the science of theology, and had combined with it as an essential part of divine truth, that the fate of mankind was determined by the divine decree independently of their own efforts and conduct, and that they were thus divided into the elect and reprobate, it became necessary, in order to preserve consistency, to introduce into his system a limitation with respect to baptism, and to prevent the opinions concerning it from interfering with those which flowed from the doctrine of Predestination. ...
In the various discussions which have arisen concerning Predestination and the doctrines with which it is connected, some modern divines have quoted the arguments of St
Supralapsarians - And in this way of considering the decrees of God, they think that they sufficiently obviate and remove the slanderous calumny cast upon them with respect to the other branch of Predestination, which leaves men in the same state when others are chosen, and that for the glory of God
Foreknowledge - It must not therefore be identified with mere foreknowledge of existence or acts (prescience); or again, strictly speaking, with destination or Predestination (ὁρίζω, προορίζω), even in the biblical sense, that is, in relation to a Providential order, much less in the philosophical sense of antecedent constraint,’...
When we turn to St
Fulness - So the ‘fulness’ of the Jews (Romans 11:12) and of the Gentiles (Romans 11:25) is the full complement, the entire number contemplated (however determined-by Predestination or otherwise)
Fulness - So the ‘fulness’ of the Jews (Romans 11:12) and of the Gentiles (Romans 11:25) is the full complement, the entire number contemplated (however determined-by Predestination or otherwise)
Book of Life - The phrase thus carries a suggestion of Predestination; but this is not thought of as absolute, since the idea of blotting out a name from the book of life occurs quite freely
Caesarius, Bishop of Arles - His vigorous denial of anything like Predestination to evil has caused a difference in the honour paid to his memory, according as writers incline respectively towards the Jesuit or Jansenist views concerning divine grace
Cassianus (11) Johannes, Founder of Western Monachism - ...
On the subject of Predestination Cassian, without assenting to Pelagius, protested against what he considered the fatalistic tendency of St
Greek Church - they believe in Predestination
Salvation - See Atonement ; Conversion ; Election ; Eschatology ; Forgiveness ; Future Hope ; Grace ; Justification ; New Birth ; Predestination ; Reconciliation, Redeem, Redemption, Redeemer; Repentance ; Sanctification ; Security of the Believer
Pelagians - The Pelagian controversy, which began with the doctrines of grace and original sin, was extended to Predestination, and excited continual discord and division in the church
Foresight - It lies on the face of their narratives that the authors of the Gospels had no reservation with respect to the all-embracing Predestination of God (cf. Acts 2:23; Acts 3:18) the necessary result of the Divine Predestination (Luke 22:22), to which Divine δεῖ (Luke 24:26) the personal free action of man had to serve as an instrument’ (Meyer, Acts 4:28)
Necessity - no hostile power) shall snatch them out of my hand’ (John 10:28) does not preclude the possibility that they may snatch themselves out of Christ’s hand by unfaithfulness; that the ‘drawing’ of the Father (John 6:44) is the attraction of Divine Love, not the Irresistible Call of Calvinism; that the ‘I pray not for the world’ of John 17:9 is to be read in the light of John 17:23, that the ‘blinding’ and ‘hardening’ of John 12:40 are a penalty for past sin; and that even the case of Judas was not one of individual Predestination. In all these passages the language is strongly predestinarian, but, for the reasons given in the preceding section, the present writer holds that conditional Predestination is, for the most part, meant
Bereans - The Bereans agree with the great majority of Christians respecting the doctrine of the Trinity, which they hold as a fundamental article; and they also agree in a great measure with the professed principles of both our established churches respecting Predestination and election, though they allege that these doctrines are not consistently taught in either church
Materialists - This scheme of philosophical necessity is distinguished from the ...
Calvinistic doctrine of Predestination in the following particulars: ...
1
Saviour (2) - There is absolutely no reason to suspect the writer of any intention to weaken or neutralize the doctrine of Predestination. Besides involving denial of the Pauline origin of the Epistles, this would leave unexplained why, in other passages, the principle of Predestination is enunciated with all desirable distinctness
Jacob - Paul presented...
Jacob as an example of the sovereign choice of God and of the Predestination of the elect (Romans 9:10-13 )
Calling - By the former it is thus stated: In the golden chain of spiritual blessings which the Apostle enumerates in Romans 8:30 , originating in the divine Predestination, and terminating in the bestowment of eternal glory on the heirs of salvation, that of calling forms an important link
God - He maintains the whole creation (Psalms 147:8-9; Matthew 5:45; Colossians 1:17), he controls all life (Deuteronomy 7:15; Deuteronomy 28:60; Job 1:21; Psalms 104:29-30; Matthew 10:29) and he directs all events, small and great, towards the goals that he has determined (Genesis 45:5-8; Psalms 135:6 : Proverbs 16:33; Isaiah 10:5-7; Isaiah 44:24-28; Isaiah 46:9-11; Amos 3:6; Amos 4:6-11; John 11:49-53; Acts 2:23; Acts 17:26; Romans 8:28; Ephesians 1:11; see Predestination; PROVIDENCE)
Election - See, further, Predestination, Regeneration, Reprobate
Hilarius Arelatensis, Saint, Bishop of Arles - Gaul from the Augustinian teaching on Predestination, expressly names Hilary, bp
Prayer - His will, with our individual freedom, and His Predestination with our prayers
Elect, Election - Davidson, Pauline Predestination ; G
Heir Heritage Inheritance - (these seem to be founded on our Lord’s words recorded in Matthew 25:34, where the Predestination, and the giving, of the kingdom are emphasized; cf
Eschatology - ...
The comparative uniformity with which these ‘fixed points’ recur in the Jewish apocalyptic eschatology may be traced in part to the Jewish idea of Predestination
Ephesians, Theology of - It is in the context of the role of Israel as the elect, the chosen, descended from Abraham to propagate the Messiah, rather than in the context of individual Predestination to salvation, that Paul speaks of election
Will of God - Towner...
See also Elect, Election ; Foreknowledge ; Predestination ; Providence of God ...
Bibliography
Baxterianism - Ward differed from Amyraut, Martinius, and others of that school, on the topic of baptismal regeneration; and, as the subjects of baptism, according to the sentiments of the two former, are invested with invisible grace, and are regenerated in virtue of the ordinance when canonically performed, such divines far more easily disposed of their baptized converts in the ranks of strict Predestination, than the others could who did not hold those sentiments
Arminianism - ...
The tenets of the Arminians may be comprised in the following five articles relating to Predestination, universal redemption, the corruption of men, conversion, and perseverance, viz
Temple - Compare 1 Peter 2:5; the election of the church, the spiritual temple, in God's eternal Predestination, before the actual rearing of that temple (Ephesians 1:4-5; Romans 8:29-30), and the peace that reigns within and above, in contrast to the toil and noise outside in the world below wherein the materials of the spiritual temple are being prepared (John 16:33), are the truths symbolized by the mode of rearing Solomon's temple
Terah - At the same time, when Terah died in Haran, and when Abram took the old man's death to heart with such grief, with such resignation, with such an assured reliance upon the divine promise, and with such full assurance of God's grace, and truth, and power, and faithfulness, a great step was taken both to the land of promise, and to Abram's Predestination as the father of all faithful men
Apocalyptic Literature - Predestination
Methodists - Wesley declared repeatedly in his writings to be those contained in the Articles of the church of England; for he understood the article on Predestination, as many others have done, in a sense not contrary to the doctrine of the redemption and the possible salvation of the whole human race
Pharisees (2) - (3) The Pharisees taught both Predestination and free-will,—much as St
Christ in the Middle Ages - Yet Augustine denied freedom of choice to the humanity of Christ, which he made subject to Predestination
Lutherans - As we descend to particulars, it will be necessary to keep our eye upon one prominent doctrine, which was eminently conspicuous in all the controversies of the Lutherans,—the doctrine of COMPLETE REDEMPTION BY CHRIST, which in their idea their adversaries (the Papists) disregarded, who denied in effect the depravity of our nature, believed the favour of Heaven in this life recoverable by what was denominated merit of congruity, and, in the life to come, by that which was termed merit of condignity, and founded Predestination upon merits of such a description; thus in every instance, while retaining the name of Christians, rendering Christianity itself superfluous
Synods - The first Christian teachers among them were Lutherans; but in process of time, the celebrity of Geneva as a place of public instruction for ministers of religion induced the majority of the candidates for the ministry to repair to that university; and, as might naturally be expected, they imported into the Low Countries the peculiar views of Calvin and Beza on the subject of Predestination