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Chosen by God

Lecturer: Dr. Robert Charles Sproul

1. Topic: Predestination

A. Biblical Teaching

Ephesians 1:1-5,11.

B. Different Views on Predestination

How important is the grace of God in human salvation?

1. Pelagianism- The grace of God assists the human being to be saved but in no way
necessary. Man in his natural state has within himself the capacity to keep the
commandment of God to such a degree as to be redeemed without any help from Divine

2. Semi-Pelagianism- Man cannot be saved apart from the grace of God. But must do
something before God will save him.

3. Augustinian- Man is fallen and is wholly dependent on God for his salvation.

Form a group of 5.

Discussion. Of the 3 major views, what is your view of Predestination and why?

C. Definition. What is Predestination?

Predestination includes two parts, namely, election and reprobation, the predetermination of both
the good and the wicked to their final end, and to certain proximate ends which are instrumental
in the realization of their final destiny.

1. Election- It may be defined as that eternal act of God whereby He, in His sovereign
good pleasure, and on account of no foreseen merit in them, chooses a certain number of men to
be the recipients of special grace and of eternal salvation. More briefly it may be said to be
Gods eternal purpose to save some of the human race in and by Jesus Christ.

2. Reprobation- It may be defined as that eternal decree of God whereby He has

determined to pass some men by with the operations of His special grace, and to punish them for
their sins, to the manifestation of His justice.

Stay with your Group of 5. Read Ephesians 1:1-5. Discuss.

On what basis does God chose to save you before the foundation of the world? Your choice or
His choice?

2. Topic: The Sovereignty of God

God from all eternity, did, by the most wise and holy counsel of His own will, freely, and
unchangeably ordain whatsoever comes to pass;[1] yet so, as thereby neither is God the
author of sin,[2] nor is violence offered to the will of the creatures; nor is the liberty or
contingency of second causes taken away, but rather established.[3] (Westminster
Confessions of Faith Chap 3:1)
(1) EPH 1:11 In whom also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestinated
according to the purpose of him who worketh all things after the counsel of
his own will. ROM 11:33, HEB 6:17, ROM 9:15
(2) JAM 1:13 Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God: for God
cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempteth he any man. 17 Every good gift
and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of
lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning. 1JOHN 1:5
(3) ACTS 2:23 Him, being delivered by the determinate counsel and
foreknowledge of God, ye have taken, and by wicked hands have crucified
and slain. MAT 17:12, ACT 4:27 JOHN 19:11, PROV. 16:33

Stay with your group of 5. Discuss.

If God is totally sovereign and if people are totally fallen and some are perished,
How can God who is sovereign allow evil in the world and how can God allow people to perish?

4 Ways God relates to fallen Men

How can a sovereign God relate to a fallen world?

1. God could offer NO opportunity to any to be saved.

2. God could give the opportunity to ALL. (Universalism)

3. God could insure the salvation of ALL.

4. God could insure the salvation of SOME. (Particularism)

Discussion. Is salvation for all or for some? Why or why not?

Conclusion: I know that God is no under obligation to save anybody, I know that God does save
somebody. One crucial principle of Divine sovereigntyI will have mercy upon whom I will
have mercy (Exodus 33:19, Romans 9:15).
God sovereignly elects and chooses and redeems some, and the rest He passes over.

3. Topic: Free Will

What does it mean to have a free will, a volitional creature under the sovereignty of God?

Different Views

A. Humanist View- Ability to make choices spontaneously, that is the choices that we make
are in no wise conditioned, or determined by any prior prejudice, inclination or

Two Problems of this view:

1. Theological, moral. no reason or motivation of the choice.

--effect without a cause.

Question: How could such an action have any moral significance to it at all?

2. Rational

B. Christian View
1. Freedom or free will is the mind choosing- Jonathan Edwards

We do not make moral choices without the mind approving the direction of our choice.

Free moral agents always act according to the strongest inclination they have at the
moment of choice. Jonathan Edwards

2. That if we mean by free will that fallen man has the ability to choose what he wants,
then of course fallen man has free will. If we mean by that term that man in his fallen
state has the moral power and ability to choose righteousness then free will is too
grandiose a term to apply to fallen man.- John Calvin

3. Every choice that we make is free and every choice that we make is determined.-
RC Sproul


Does man in his fallen condition has the ability to choose? What kind of choosing he
seldom do?

4. Mans Radical Fallenness

A. John 6:65 And He was saying, "For this reason I have said to you, that no one can
come to Me unless it has been granted him from the Father." NASU

1. Universal negative- No one..

2. Ability- Can

Does man, in and of himself, have the ability to come to Jesus?

3. A Necessary condition- Unless

John 6: 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. NASU

Question: What does it mean that God draws?

Arminian- Woos or entices but resistible

Augustinian- DragJames 2:6, Acts16:19
Augustinian Axiom: Regeneration precedes faith, John 3, Ephesians 2, Romans 8

Discuss: Do you agree with this statement. Why or why not? And so that the crucial
prerequisite for salvation is a work of the Holy Spirit that is the necessary condition, the
prerequisite for faith to be present.

5. Does God Create unbelief?

Romans 9: 9 For this is the word of promise: "At this time I will come and Sarah shall
have a son." 10 And not only this, but when Rebecca also had conceived by one man,
even by our father Isaac 11 (for the children not yet being born, nor having done any
good or evil, that the purpose of God according to election might stand, not of works
but of Him who calls), 12 it was said to her, "The older shall serve the younger." 13
As it is written, "Jacob I have loved, but Esau I have hated." (NKJV)

One is preferred before the other before either is born.

A. Foreknowledge view of Election- predestination simply means that God, from all
eternity looks down through time and knows in advance what people will do, and
on the basis of that foreknowledge, then chooses them.
B. Armenian View- the final decision for our salvation rest upon a human choice not
upon a divine action.

Romans 9:14 What shall we say then? Is there unrighteousness with God? Certainly not! 15 For
He says to Moses, "I will have mercy on whomever I will have mercy, and I will have
compassion on whomever I will have compassion." (NKJV)

Discuss. The whole point of the passage is that some people receive a measure of mercy that
others do not. When God does do His electing, He always does it in the light of the fall. God

only chooses fallen sinners for salvation. All of Gods choices about salvation presuppose the
need for salvation; otherwise thered never be any such thing as election.

Romans 9:13 As it is written, "Jacob I have loved, but Esau I have hated."

What does it means to hate?

Double Predestination

1. Equal Ultimacy

2. Active ---Passive

6. The Divine Initiative

It refers to that first step of salvation that is brought to pass in our lives unilaterally and
exclusively by the power of God.

Biblical Reference Ephesians 2

Question: In the light of Gods sovereignty, in the light of the whole concept of predestination, if
God has decreed from all eternity that certain people will be saved, then certainly those people
will be saved, with or without my bearing witness, with or without my preaching of the Gospel,
why then should we concerned about evangelism?

1. Our Duty

2. Our privilege