Not Chosen To Salvation
By Dr. Max D. Younce, Pastor
HERITAGE BAPTIST BIBLE CHURCH
P.O. Box 573| Walnut Grove, MN 56180 | Telephone (507) 859-2519
CHAPTER THREE (continued)
"And the times of this ignorance God winked at: but now commandeth all men everywhere to repent" (Change your mind).
God commands all men, everywhere to change their minds and come to Christ by faith. Now notice verse 31:
"Because he hath appointed a day, in the which He will judge the world in righteousness by the man whom he hath ordained; whereof he hath given assurance unto all men, in that he hath raised him from the dead."
My question is, "Why would God give assurance unto all men if all men could not be saved?" The reason He gives assurance unto all men that Christ has risen from the dead is because of God's will in verse 30 that "...all men" repent." Notice in verse 31 that God will judge the world in righteousness. How could God be a righteous judge if He elected some to be saved and not others? He would, then, become unrighteous! God's will is clearly revealed so that everyone can understand. It is the philosophical reasoning of the predestinationalists that becomes obscure, not the Word of God.
"Christ is become of no effect unto you, whosoever of you are justified by the law; ye are fallen from grace."
There were those in Galatia who were trying to be justified by circumcision and the keeping of the law. Notice in verse 2:
"Behold, I Paul say unto you, that if ye be circumcised, Christ shall profit you nothing."
This was their choice, but it was not God's will. Again, the "whosoever" in verse 4 stands out. It was their will. They had chosen to be justified by the law rather than being justified through Jesus Christ. John 14:6 tells us there is only one way to God and that is through Christ:
"Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me."
When you sweep away all of the debris from the cult religions, you will see a self-righteous, works salvation coming to the surface. The "whosoever" in verse 4 reveals that it is the free will of any individual to be justified by grace or by works. God holds each person responsible for the decisions they make.
If election were true and God overpowers the free will of man, then it would have been useless to have Galatians 5:1 in the Bible.
"Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage."
If we have no free will, then it would have been needless to ask the Christian to "stand fast" and to "be not entangled again." If election were true, they would have never had a will to do so.
"And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness to all nations; and then shall the end come."
This Scripture is in reference to the 7-Year Tribulation Period in which, again, the whole world will be reached with the Gospel. Even by the end of the first century, the gospel had been preached to the whole world (Read Romans 1:8, Romans 10:18, and Colossians 1:6, 23). You will find from Genesis to Revelation that God's will is for everyone to be saved. That is the reason for the Gospel being taken to the world.
Matthew 11:28, 29
"Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly of heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls."
This is for salvation that the invitation is universal. This is the purpose of the Holy Spirit--to convict the world of sin, righteousness and judgment. Any student of the Bible recognizes that verse 28 is speaking about salvation and verse 29 is speaking concerning our service to the Lord. The invitation is to everyone, and we thank God for that. Since everyone is invited, everyone has a right to accept or reject Christ. Again, the free will of man is brought forth.
1st Timothy 4:10
"For therefore we both labour and suffer reproach, because we trust in the living God, who is the Saviour of all men, specially of those that believe. These things command and teach."
Here we see that Christ is the Savior of all men, especially of those that believe, He died for the sins of the world and He wants to be the Saviour of every person born. He is only the Savior, specifically and personally, to those who choose Him by their own free will. Again, we are grateful to God that His will is "that none should perish, but that all should repent (i.e. change their mind)." The forgiveness of sins will only be appropriated to those who accept Him as their Savior. These Scriptures are so clear and specific that an explanation is hardly needed. Since God's will is to be the Savior of all men, a person would have no one to blame but themselves if they die, and spend eternity in Hell. That person would have to go against God's will and reject Him out of their own free will.
"But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man."
Here is another verse in support of man's free will and declaring God's will. What can be added to "Christ tasted death for every man?" Please do not ask me to believe Christ contradicted Himself by tasting death for every man and then electing only some to believe!
Those that support predestination concerning salvation actually accuse God of not loving all of mankind, even though it is never admitted. It is hard to imagine anyone trying to accuse God of electing some to go to Heaven but not others, then saying "We just cannot understand it." Of course they cannot! It is simply not true.
1st Timothy 2:5,6
"For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus; Who gave himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time."
This Scripture is perfectly clear, stating that Christ paid the price for sin for everyone. If someone was predestinated for Hell, why would God send His Son, Christ, to be ransom for those who were predestinated to Hell? This, of course, does not make sense. God proved His love by giving Christ as a ransom for all. Each one of us now stands responsible for the choice we make because of the free will God has given to each of us.
2nd Peter 3:9
"The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any perish, but that all should come to repentance" (i.e. A change of mind).
Those who endorse predestination and election to salvation will have to accuse God of lying in this verse. Yet God is so clear and precise in His teachings that there is no excuse for a misunderstanding. These verses reveal to us the direct mind and will of God concerning salvation. The predestinationalists say they believe this verse, but the doctrine they endorse reveals otherwise. Instead of accepting the Word of God for what it says, they insert their meaning, their doctrine, and then justify it by declaring "We cannot understand the mind of God." This is the same double-talk that is used by cult religions.
For example, Jehovah's Witnesses say they believe that Jesus Christ is the Savior of the world. What they mean by what they say is entirely different from what the Scriptures teach. When they declare that they believe Jesus is the Savior of the world, they mean that He is a good man, not that He is God in human flesh. Therefore, He is the Savior of the world by the example He sets for us to follow. This double-talk is nothing more than following the example of Christ and by good works we can merit our salvation. Of course, this is contrary to the Word of God because no one will ever go to Heaven on their own righteousness. The point we want to make is, they make the same claims as we do, but their meaning is entirely different.
Predestinationalists say they believe these verses, but their meaning is entirely foreign to the Word of God. Again, I want to emphasize that the doctrine of predestination for salvation is not some "mini-doctrine." It is a damnable doctrine because it attacks the will of God as clearly stated in His Word, it attacks the righteousness of God, it makes God a respecter of persons which is totally against God's Word. When God says in 2nd Peter 3:9 that He is "not willing that any should perish," that is exactly what God wants!
1st Timothy 2:3,4
"For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior; who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth."
The predestinationalists tell us they do not understand how God can say this and yet elect some to Heaven and not others to Hell. Not understanding is the result of not taking God at His Word. When a person takes a word such as "predestinate, elect, or choose," quotes it out of context, does not correlate it with other Scripture concerning the same subject, then mixes it together with humanistic reasoning and wisdom, you have produced a batch of philosophy that is impossible to understand. How easy it is to believe the Word of God that states His will is to "have all men to be saved."
1st John 2:2
"And he is the propitiation (payment) for our sins: and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world."
Any person can be saved as the sins of everyone have been paid for by the death of Christ on Calvary. God has extended to man the free will and right to choose his own destiny. Therefore, he stands totally responsible for his acceptance or rejection of the Lord Jesus Christ.
1st John 5:1
"Whosoever believeth that Jesus is the Christ is born of God."
"Whosoever" reveals the free will of all mankind. Did God make a mistake? Should He have written "the elect that believeth?" Is the doctrine of election in error, or is God?
2nd John 9
"Whosoever transgresseth, and abideth not in the doctrine of Christ, hath not God. He hath abideth in the doctrine of Christ, he hath both the Father and the Son."
Here, again, we have projected to us the right of man to transgress "and abideth not in the doctrine of Christ. A person has the right to abide or abide not in the doctrine of Christ--this is that person's free will. God has given man a free will to accept or reject Him. The "whosoever" in 1st John 5:1 is a person's right and free will to accept or reject Christ.
"For it we sin willfully after that we have received the knowledge of the truth, there remaineth no more sacrifice for sins."
The point of this verse is--that we sin willfully. It is our choice. If election to salvation were true, how can one sin willfully? If one were elected to salvation and elected to serve Christ, then it would be impossible for him to sin willfully. If election to salvation were true, we would have to do what we were elected to do. This would be against the whole character and purpose of God for His children, as well as the lost. Since we sin willfully, of our own record, we must bear our own responsibility before God for our decisions.
"And the Spirit and the bride say, come. And let him that heareth say, come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take of the water of life freely. For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book: And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book."
In verse 17 the free will of man stands out. "Whosoever will may take of the water of life freely." Then God testifies to every man what will happen to any man who takes away from His Word. This, of course, places the responsibility upon any man. Then in verse 19, "If any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy", and He states what will happen. The point I am stressing is, it is man's free will and God emphasizes that all the way through His Word.
Let me give an example of what one can do with Scripture if they follow the same pattern of interpretation as the predestinationalists. They lasso one Scripture and tie it up whenever they come to the words "elect, choosing, foreknowledge, and predestination." Then they saddle their "hobby-horse" and use it to over-ride the free will of man. They disregard all other Scripture which invites all men to be saved.
Here is the same extreme to which you could go with other portions of God's Word. In Acts 27:31 we are told:
"Paul said to the centurion and to the soldiers, except these abide in the ship, ye cannot be saved."
Taken alone, this would mean that we would all have to abide in a ship somewhere on order to be saved. I know that sounds absolutely ridiculous, and in reality, it is. But in the same sense, that is exactly how predestinationalists build their doctrine. They yank one Scripture out that has the word "elect, foreknowledge, or choosing" without applying it in the context or correlating it with other Scripture. All false doctrine is built upon this same procedure. We are told in 2nd Timothy 2:15:
"Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth."
That means being honest with God's Word. Correct interpretation, evaluation and doctrine is a result of relating all Scriptures that pertain to a certain subject, person, or doctrine. When those verses complement each other and totally agree, then you have the correct interpretation and doctrine.
You see, God is not divided nor does He contradict Himself. Only men contradict themselves. This is done when they attempt to build a doctrine upon a particular Scripture or word that is in direct contrast to other portions of Scriptures.
Are you aware that the Bible says "There is no God?" This is recorded in Psalms 14:1. But that is only part of the verse, not all of the verse. The entire verse reads "The fool hath said in his heart, there is no God. They are corrupt, they have done abominable works, there is none that doeth good." Do you see what men can do by only using part of God's word and not all of it. You will always come out with the right doctrine when all Scriptures agree concerning a certain subject, as the mind of God is not confused, nor contradictory.
"For ye have heard of my conversation in time past in the Jews' religion, how that beyond measure I persecuted the church of God, and wasted it: And profited in the Jews' religion above many of my equals in mine own nation, being more exceedingly zealous of the traditions of my fathers."
Notice Acts 8:1 concerning Saul in reference to the death of Stephen:
"And Saul was consenting unto his death. And at that time there was a great persecution against the church which was at Jerusalem; and they were all scattered abroad throughout the regions of Judaea and Samaria, except the apostles."
If God had elected Paul to be saved--so that he had no choice of his own--then why would He not bring Paul to a knowledge of Christ prior to the time of his participation in the persecution and killing of many, many Christians? How many Christians Paul killed, we do not know. It could have been hundreds and hundreds that Paul not only persecuted and wasted, but actually slaughtered and murdered. Would the predestinationalists tell me that God allowed him to do this when He had already elected him to be saved? If Paul had been elected to salvation, could not God have saved Paul prior to this and Paul could have been winning souls to Christ instead of killing Christians? Again, we find that "election to salvation" is against the will of God."
1st John, Chapter 1, Man's Free Will Illuminated
Any student of the Bible recognizes the difference between sonship and fellowship (being obedient to the Lord after we are saved). 1st John 1 is dealing with the believer's fellowship with Christ and other Christians. Notice his free will.
- Free Will to Lie: Verse 6 - "If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not tell the truth."
- Free Will to Obey: Verse 7 - "But if we walk in the light (obedience) ...we have fellowship one with another..."
- Free Will to Deceive Ourselves: Verse 8 - "If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us."
- Free Will to Confess: Verse 9 - "If we confess our sin, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins..."
- Free Will to deny We Have Sinned: Verse 10 - "If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us."
These verses stress the believer's free will. "If we" is used four times, and "But if" is used once. If election were true, then the possibility would never exist for a Christian to lie (verse 6), deceive themselves (verse 8), or make God a liar (verse 10). In verse 9, "If we confess our sin" would seem a bit confusing. According to Nettleton on page 22, "His saved ones serve Him." If Christians are elected to serve with no free will to do otherwise, where did the sin they are confessing in verse 9 come from? The confusion either lies with God or with Nettleton--you choose!
Table of Contents | Previous | Next
Dr. Max D. Younce, Pastor
HERITAGE BAPTIST BIBLE CHURCH
P.O. Box 573
Walnut Grove, MN 56180
Telephone (507) 859-2519
Am I Going to Heaven?
Books by Dr. Max D. Younce
100 Bible Questions and Answers