Predestination: Do We Choose God, or Does God Choose Us?
Do We Choose God or Does God Choose Us?
Yet another confusing subject from the Bible huh? We have always been taught that we have a choice whether or not we accept Jesus as our Lord and Savior. Now I am learning the Bible says God chooses us. Which is it?
Before I answer this I would like to lay down a little analogy for later.
Imagine that you are in a raft on a raging river with several of your best friends. There is a very large deadly waterfall just ahead and the raft is caught up on a rock beneath the water. You can feel the raft slipping inch by inch and at any moment you are certain the raft will get loose and everyone will be swept over the edge to their death. Suddenly you realize there is a very large tree that has a thick branch hanging out above the raft but it is too high to get a hold of. A man crawls out across the branch and holds a hand down toward you and say that he wants to save you. You don't know why he chose to help you, and you have no idea if he will try to save anyone else in the raft after. What do you do?
Do you tell him "No thanks! Either you help everyone or I will just die with them.", or do you take his hand, let him pull you to safety, then plead for him to help the others too?
This really isn't a hard question and it is not a trick question. It is pure foolishness to just decide to die with your friends. What good does it do them or yourself? The smart thing to do is take his hand and after he has helped you to safety, you can then plead with him to help the others before the raft gets loose.
Keep this in mind.
As for the original question.... Do We Choose God or Does God Choose Us?
4 just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we would be holy and blameless before Him. In love 5 He predestined us to adoption as sons through Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the kind intention of His will,
God chose his saints before the foundation of the world! He predestined us to adoption as sons through Jesus Christ to Himself! It states it pretty clear right there. God chose who He will save even before the foundation of the world.
44 No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws him; and I will raise him up on the last day.
Jesus says it himself right here. Nobody can turn to Jesus unless God first draws them to Him. In fact to take it a step further, Paul says that not only does God choose us, but man is inherently evil and cannot turn to God without God first choosing to change his spirit.
7 because the mind set on the flesh is hostile toward God; for it does not subject itself to the law of God, for it is not even able to do so, 8 and those who are in the flesh cannot please God.
It is not even able to do so. Someone who has not been called by God, simply will not find it in them to want God. We can be taught good morals and to be kind and loving from birth, but unless God calls us, we cannot desire God in our lives.
Wait! So you are saying that millions of people will pay the price of eternal damnation, not because they didn't choose God, but because God didn't choose them? How is that fair? Why would I want to believe in a God like that?
One of the silliest things I hear people say is they don't believe in God because they can't serve a God that lets people burn in hell. Because I can't serve a God who says homosexuality is a sin. Because I can't serve a God who demands so much. etc... When people say that stuff, are they truly so arrogant that they believe that if they choose not to believe in something, that will mean it doesn't really exist? Isn't that in the same lines of a child closing their eyes and thinking it makes them invisible?
If God is real, God is real. If God is not real, God is not real. What we "believe" makes absolutely zero difference to the truth in reality. If God is real, there will be billions of people who will go to hell because they "chose" not to believe. If God is real, it's not going to make any difference whether you like His rules or not. You either serve God and the rules He gives us, or you end up in hell. What you like and what you believe, will never change the truth from being the truth.
And just because you believe in God won't make Him real either!
That is true! Only if God is not real, I lose nothing. I don't burn in hell for choosing not to believe in something that my gut is saying is real whether I like it or not.
Let me be clear on the truth here. God is real. As my other articles at OneGodLogic shows, it takes more faith in the unknown to say God is not real, than it takes to believe God is real. Millions of people in this world are witnesses to the fact for they say God has changed their lives. Millions of people will tell you that they have felt God's presence in their life before. I have no doubt that God is real. And if God is real, it doesn't matter if He says only the people who can walk on their hands will go to heaven. If that's His rules, then I am going to start learning to walk on my hands whether I believe it's fair or not. Because it doesn't matter what I like or believe, God's rules are the only rules that matter!
Here is the thing. Contrary to what this article might sound, God is not an evil tyrant God who finds joy in our suffering. God is actually a loving and kind God. He is not sending us all to suffer in hell forever. He is choosing many of us to pour his love upon and give us an eternity of love and joy and happiness, but He is just choosing which ones of us will receive that.
God is all knowing! God created humans and He gave us free will. As soon as he considered the idea of creating man, being all knowing, He already knew who would accept him in the end and who wouldn't. Maybe he also knew who would be on the fence and whom Satan would be able to sway as well. So maybe instead of waiting for us to choose, God decided to do the choosing for us because then in choosing us, he gives us a desire to want Him and that keeps Satan from winning over those who would be on the fence otherwise. Nobody knows why God chooses us for certain, but we do know it has to do with His foreknowledge.
1 Peter 1
1 Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ,
To those who reside as aliens, scattered throughout Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia, who are chosen 2 according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, by the sanctifying work of the Spirit, to obey Jesus Christ and be sprinkled with His blood: May grace and peace be yours in the fullest measure.
The last words of verse 1 and the first words of verse 2 are very telling. ...who are chosen according to the foreknowledge of God the Father... This really seems to say that God chooses us because he knows who will choose Him already.
How do we know if God is choosing us?
Search your heart. Read my articles on "Evidence of God". Read my article on "Why Should I Get Saved". Then sit quietly sometime and ask yourself. Is God real? Did Jesus really exist and was He crucified? Did Jesus really willingly die on the cross and did God really raise him from the dead? Ask yourself those questions and really think on it. If you can say yes to each of those, God is choosing you. That doesn't mean you are automatically going to heaven. It only means God is choosing you. After that, is where your free will comes back into play. You need to turn to God and accept Jesus as your Lord and Savior.
If deep inside, you know God is real, or feel a drawing toward God, it is because God is choosing you. If God is choosing you, the stupidest thing you could do is still reject Him! That would be no different than telling the guy on the tree branch you will die with your friends. What good would that decision do you or anyone else? Even if you don't like the idea God is choosing you and not those you love, you should still accept His salvation. Let God save you and then start praying to God to save those you love too. Just because He hasn't yet, does not mean He won't! Not only will God choose whom He chooses to choose, but God will choose them "when" He chooses as well! Just because He has not yet, it doesn't mean He won't. As far as you know, God might be choosing you now, to use you to reach the others!
All I know is God is God. We are here to serve God. Not the other way around. God makes the rules and it is not our place to question Him. It is our place to serve Him! Defying God will not get your friends saved. Defying Him will only get you in hell. Submitting to God? That could lead to God using you to reach your friends. And if God doesn't choose those you love in the end? You are still far better off with an eternity of God's love than an eternity in hell.