Predestination with Free Will
De 30:19 I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing; therefore choose life, that both you and your descendants may live.
It sounds pretty simple doesn’t it and who in their right mind would not choose life and blessing over death and cursing.
Mt 22:14 For many are called, but few are chosen.
This is even simpler but how can we be called or be chosen? How can we choose to love Yahweh with all our hearts and obey His commandments if our desires of the world are pulling us in the opposite direction?
Ga 5:16 I say then: Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh. 17 For the flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; and these are contrary to one another, so that you do not do the things that you wish.
1Co 2:14 But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.
So, immediately we understand that in order to choose life and blessing we need something more then just our natural intellect and instincts because they consider the things of Yahweh foolishness.
Rom 8:5 For they that are after the flesh (#4561 sarx- flesh, carnal) do mind the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit. 6 For to be carnally (#4561) minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace. 7 Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be. 8 So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God.
“Walk in the spirit” or be “spiritually minded” in order to resist the desires of the flesh and choose the right path. Where and how do we get this “spirit” that enables us to choose correctly?
1Co 3:16 Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you?
2Co 1:22 Who also has sealed us and given us the Spirit in our hearts as a guarantee.
Ga 4:6 God hath sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, crying, Abba, Father.
1Jo 3:24 He that keepeth his commandments dwelleth in him, and he in him. And hereby we know that he abideth in us, by the Spirit which he hath given us.
Yahweh gives us the Holy Spirit which makes it possible for us to see the truth and choose life and blessing whereas those without the spirit naturally are drawn to the desires of the flesh, the things of the world.
Lu 11:13 If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children: how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask him?
But what about free will? Do we not have the free will to decide whether we want to believe or don’t want to believe, whether we want to obey or don’t want to obey?
It sounds like you do have free will but without the Holy Spirit are you competent and knowledgeable enough to choose wisely and do you understand and appreciate the consequences? Clearly one cannot and will not, just read Romans 8:5-8 again.
Jas 4:4 Know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God.
1Jo 2:15 Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him.
Yes indeed, the things of the world are enticing to the eyes and the flesh and it seems Satan wraps them up in a prettier package everyday. He especially targets our youth whose armor has not yet been fully strengthened through study and years of service.
Lu 13:23 Then said one unto him, Master, are there few that be saved? And he said unto them, 24 Strive (agonizomai) to enter in at the strait gate: for many, I say unto you, will seek (zeteo) to enter in, and shall not be able.
This is similar to Mt 7:13-14 where few will find the narrow way although here many seek it but are left out. But look at the difference between strive (#75 agonizomai), which means fight, labour fervently, struggle, endeavour with strenuous zeal and seek (#2212 zeteo), which is more akin to desire or enquire. Many will not put their whole heart, soul and life into it and that is what is required (read Rev 3:16).
It’s not just one choice – “Yes, I’ve decided to be saved.” It is the many daily decisions that confront you at any moment.
Lu 8:11 Now the parable is this: The seed is the word of God. 12 Those by the way side are they that hear; then cometh the devil, and taketh away the word out of their hearts, lest they should believe and be saved. 13 They on the rock are they, which, when they hear, receive the word with joy; and these have no root, which for a while believe, and in time of temptation fall away. 14 And that which fell among thorns are they, which, when they have heard, go forth, and are choked with cares and riches and pleasures of this life, and bring no fruit to perfection.
You’ve chosen to be saved but are talked out of it by family or friends. You do fine for awhile but you can’t follow through with the changes in your lifestyle. You want to be saved but are overwhelmed by job, family, material possessions as well as recreation and other pursuits. The flesh just can’t do it alone. You have a choice, sure but you don’t have a prayer on your own. You can also choose to be an Olympic athletic but without the exercise, devotion, commitment and determination that choice would fail as well.
Joh 13:18 I speak not of you all: I know whom I have chosen: but that the scripture may be fulfilled, He that eateth bread with me hath lifted up his heel against me.
Did Yahshua choose Judas because he needed someone to betray him? Absolutely! Isn’t that a bit unfair? But didn’t Judas resist all Yahshua offered in order to gain some material wealth? How could the other eleven see, love and marvel at the works, words and power of their Messiah while Judas was wondering what all the fuss was about and thinking only of the flesh (Jn 12:4-6)? Why could he not see and choose as the other eleven did?
Now the heavy stuff that puts to the test just how absolutely sovereign the God you believe in really is.
Rom 9:10 When Rebecca had conceived children by one man, our forefather Isaac, 11 though they were not yet born and had done nothing either good or bad, in order that God’s purpose of election might continue, not because of works but because of his call, 12 she was told, “The elder will serve the younger.” 13 As it is written, “Jacob I loved, but Esau I hated.”
In order that God’s choice might stand. Not because of what any man did or did not do but only because of Yahweh’s decision.
Verse 14 What shall we say then? Is there injustice on God’s part? By no means! 15 For he says to Moses, “I will have mercy on whom I have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I have compassion.” 16 So it depends not upon man’s will or exertion, but upon God’s mercy. 17 For the scripture says to Pharaoh, “I have raised you up for the very purpose of showing my power in you, so that my name may be proclaimed in all the earth.” 18 So then he has mercy upon whomever he wills, and he hardens the heart of whomever he wills.
Of course there is no injustice or unfairness with God. Some people might pass judgement on His decisions with the tiny speck of information they think they have compared to His omniscience but how foolish is that. Paul again points out that it has no bearing on what man does. Moses was created to lead His chosen people and Pharaoh created to stand against him to proclaim Yahweh’s power and fulfil His design.
Verse 19 You will say to me then, “Why does he still find fault? For who can resist his will?” 20 But who are you, a man, to answer back to God? Will what is molded say to its molder, “Why have you made me thus?” 21 Has the potter no right over the clay, to make out of the same lump one vessel for beauty and another for menial use?
Of course no wise man would resist His will and He only finds fault with doubters and unbelievers. That would be like a garbage truck saying to man, “Why didn’t you make me like that shiny, Chevy convertible.”
Verse 22 What if God, choosing to show His wrath and to make His power known, endured with much longsuffering the vessels of wrath fitted for destruction; 23 and this that He might make known the riches of His glory on the vessels of mercy, whom He had prepared before unto glory.
So, if Almighty, Sovereign Yahweh decides in His infinite wisdom and knowledge to fulfill his design through both vessels who love and obey Him and vessels who reject and ignore Him, why would we challenge that?
Ep 1:4 According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love: 5 Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Yahshua Messiah to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will
There it is. If you want to be a chosen vessel of mercy just ask Him and He will come to you for “the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as Yahweh our God shall call” (Act 2:39).
Rom 8:29 For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren. 30 Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified.
Of course Yahweh knows those who will endure until the end and those who will not because He knows everything, past and future, but we don’t have that power. We can’t even be sure what tomorrow might bring.
Credit: The bottom line looks like this: Yahweh 100% – you or me 0%! Yahweh creates us, calls us, gives us His spirit that we might see, justifies us, guides us, sustains us, chooses us and glorifies us. Now, no arguments or deflated ego just – “Thank you, thank you, thank you, merciful and ALLmighty, Sovereign Yahweh.”
Isa 55:6 Seek ye Yahweh while he may be found, call ye upon him while he is near: 7 Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto Yahweh, and he will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon.