“In him we were also chosen, having been predestined according to the plan of him who works out everything in conformity with the purpose of his will, in order that we, who were the first to put our hope in Christ, might be for the praise of his glory” (Ephesians 1:11-12, NIV).
With any of the big words of the faith, there is often disagreement among the various denominations and individual theologians. Such is the case with the doctrine of predestination. As I share my particular viewpoint on this issue, my prayer is that the diversity of our thoughts and ideas would only add to the richness of our understanding.
Predestination is the idea that God wills or ordains that certain people will come to faith in Christ and therefore be saved. The logical conclusion, then, is that God chooses other people who will be condemned. This is often referred to as double predestination. In my opinion, this view is lacking in Scriptural support and can be quite dangerous to the faith of Christians.
Scripture is quite clear that God “…wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth” (1 Timothy 2:4). Jesus himself remarked concerning the hard-hearted Pharisees, “ ‘…how often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, and you were not willing’ ” (Matthew 23:37, NIV). From these and so many other passages we come to understand that the ultimate desire of God is for all individuals to attain salvation through faith in Christ.
(To Be Continued)