Skip to comments.Catholic Word of the Day: PREDESTINATION, 08-10-13
Posted on 08/10/2013 9:51:50 AM PDT by Salvation
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In the widest sense it is every eternal decision of God; in a narrower sense it is the supernatural final destination of rational creatures; and in the strictest sense it is God's eternal decision to assume certain rational creatures into heavenly glory. Predestination implies an act of the divine intellect and of the divine will. The first is foreknowledge, the second is predestination.
According to its efficacy in time, predestination is distinguished as incomplete or complete depending on whether it is to grace only or also to glory. Complete predestination is the divine preparation of grace in the present life and of glory in the life to come.
This doctrine is proposed by the ordinary and universal teaching of the Church as a truth of revelation. The reality of predestination is clearly attested by St. Paul: "They are the ones he chose especially long ago and intended to become true images of the Son, so that his Son, might be the eldest of many brothers. He called those he intended for this; those he called he justified and with those he justified he shared his glory." (Romans 8:29-30). All elements of complete predestination are given: the activity of God's mind and will, and the principal stages of its realization in time.
The main difficulty in the doctrine of predestination is whether God's eternal decision has been taken with or without consideration of human freedom. Catholic teaching holds that predestination by God does not deny the human free will. Numerous theories have been offered on how to reconcile the two, but all admit with St. Paul (Romans 11:33) that predestination is an unfathomable mystery. (Etym. Latin praedestinatio, a determining beforehand.)
All items in this dictionary are from Fr. John Hardon's Modern Catholic Dictionary, © Eternal Life. Used with permission.
In other words, man still has a lot to say (and do) to determine his eternal destination!
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It’s real simple. It’s not a mystery.
God is ALL KNOWING. That means he already knows His sheep, every one. While man has free will, it doesn’t mean that God doesn’t know what choices we are going to make. It is not predetermined what each of us will do, it’s just that God knows what it will be. There is a HUGE difference between the two.
God already knows who will be saved and where everyone will spend eternity. If the “mystery” is that because we don’t know the answers to those questions, then I guess that could be considered a mystery.
While none of us will know for certainty until the day comes, we have “faith” that God’s word is true. That Jesus died for our sins, and by accepting Him as did the thief on the cross, His FREE gift of eternal life with Him will be realized. While those who choose to deny Him to the very end, will spend eternity in hell separated from God FOREVER. Our ALL KNOWING God does already know which are which. The first may be last and the last may be first, but He knows ALL His sheep every one.
John 10: 14 I am the good shepherd; I know my sheep and my sheep know me 15 just as the Father knows me and I know the Fatherand I lay down my life for the sheep. 16 I have other sheep that are not of this sheep pen. I must bring them also. They too will listen to my voice, and there shall be one flock and one shepherd. 17 The reason my Father loves me is that I lay down my lifeonly to take it up again. 18 No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have authority to lay it down and authority to take it up again. This command I received from my Father.
John 10:25 Jesus answered, I did tell you, but you do not believe. The works I do in my Fathers name testify about me, 26 but you do not believe because you are not my sheep. 27 My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me. 28 I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one will snatch them out of my hand. 29 My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all[c]; no one can snatch them out of my Fathers hand. 30 I and the Father are one.
“The verse tells you whom is “predestined” to be conformed....those whom God knew before hand. If you ask yourself, “who didn’t God know before they were born?” you will realize that God knew EVERYONE before they were born, therefore EVERYONE is “predestined” to become children of God. “
Ye know not the scriptures, which declare that Christ knows His Sheep, but doesn’t know the reprobate. My sheep hear my voice, saith Christ, and I know them, and they follow me: And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand(Joh 10:27-28). On the other hand, to the reprobate, Christ declares, “I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity (Mat 7:23).
This does not refer to His omniscience, but His knowledge in particular of who is and is not given to Him, which is in no way universal, nor does it have anything to do with man giving himself to the Son. It is the Father that gives, and all those whom the Father gives come to the Son.
All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out (John 6:37). So we see that none of the elect are ever lost or fail to come, since all those who are given by the Father do come to the Son infallibly. God does not merely ask and persuade, but actively put[s] [His] law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts; and will be their God, and they shall be [His] people, and again, God says, I will... cause you to walk in my statutes (Jer 31:33, Ezekiel 36:27, Hebrews 8:10, 10:16).
Christ constantly tells them that they do not believe, because it was not given to them to believe. To the Pharisees He says, ye believe not, because ye are not of my sheep, and then He adds, as I said unto you (John 10:26). Earlier He had told them that the sheep hear His voice, and He knows them. They are not here removed from Sheephood because they refused to believe, but because they were never sheep at all. To other unbelievers He says:
But there are some of you that believe not. For Jesus knew from the beginning who they were that believed not, and who should betray him. And he said, Therefore said I unto you, that no man can come unto me, except it were given unto him of my Father. (Joh 6:64-65)
If all receive it from the Father to believe in the Son, then it should have been said My Father gave it to you to believe, but you refused His fair offer. Or, at best, I foreknew you would not receive what my Father gave you. But instead Christ tells them, as an explanation for their unbelief, no man can come unto me, except it were given... [by] my Father. Plainly Christ here declares that it is given to some to believe, but not all.
And in still another place, Christ begins to pray for some, but not for all, saying I pray for them: I pray not for the world, but for them which thou hast given me; for they are thine(Joh 17:9). Now Christ could not have prayed only for those given to Him if the whole world was given to Him. His prayer should have been for the whole world, rather than just for those given to Him out of the world.
And in the very next verse of Romans that you quoted, it declares, (proving the falsehood of Salvation’s OP which declares an “incomplete” and a “complete” predestination,) that all predestination is complete. “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” (Rom 8:30).
I’m sure there are many people who are in hell, who had either been removed from Judea in ancient times by thousands of miles, or who today live in various parts of the world who had never so much as even heard of any Gospel, who will be surprised to hear that they were called, justified and glorified.
In the very next chapter of Romans, Paul distinguishes even further from the “children of the flesh,” and the “children of promise.” Such a distinction in itself proves that not all are promised. He also removes any sense of the idea that salvation is based on conditions, rather than on the gratuitous choice of God to save one man, and not another.
That is, They which are the children of the flesh, these are not the children of God: but the children of the promise are counted for the seed... but when Rebecca also had conceived by one, even by our father Isaac; (For the children being not yet born, neither having done any good or evil, that the purpose of God according to election might stand, not of works, but of him that calleth;) It was said unto her, The elder shall serve the younger. As it is written, Jacob have I loved, but Esau have I hated. (Rom 9:8-13)
Now Paul uses this to explain the nature of Gods election, that it is not based on the righteousness of the elect, but on the purely free mercy of God for one child over another. As he says himself, not of works, but of Him that calleth, proving that salvation belongs utterly to Gods selective call. This is the whole point of this passage, to show the gratuitous and sovereign choice of God, and that it is this choice which determines salvation. But if what you say is true, Paul should have written not of works, but on him who believeth. But lest you still beat your chest and say that faith is not ruled out as a condition for election, a little further Paul says So then it is not of him that willeth, nor of him that runneth, but of God that sheweth mercy (Rom 9:16). What is willing if not to believing? And what is running if not works of righteousness? But, again, if what you say is true, it should have said it is not of God who runneth, or God who willeth, but of him that believeth. And immediately responding to the inevitable complaint, Thou wilt say then unto me, Why doth he yet find fault? For who hath resisted his will? since the inevitable logic is that those whom God does not choose are left out. Paul, instead of correcting his misapprehension, confirms the truth of election and attacks the unbeliever for his impertinence, saying, Nay but, O man, who art thou that repliest against God? Shall the thing formed say to him that formed it, Why hast thou made me thus? (Rom 9:19-20).
Now as for the will. Not even Augustine, who was the champion of what you would call “Calvinist” doctrine, did away with the will. After all, those whom the Father gives to the Son, come to the Son with faith. And those who are not given to the Son, are left in their wretched and depraved state. Being dead in their sins, they are not held off by God as if they tried very hard to believe but couldn’t. They simply do not want to believe, of their own choice and will.
There are two terms that should never have been invented, because they are totally unnecessary, and cause nothing but mischief: “predestination,” and “conscience.”
“he word for know or knew is the Greek word ginosko which means to learn to know or come to know.
Strong’s Greek dictionary declares that the meaning in general means Know, perceive, to be aware of, to understand, etc. The obvious meaning being that Christ knows His sheep, and does not come to know His sheep, as if He did not know about them from before the foundation of the world, which is clearly taught in other places. You basically deny your own argument of foreknowledge.
Furthermore, I did not actually argue against God’s general foreknowledge of all things. But used it to prove the difference between the Sheep of God, whom God is said to know, and the reprobate, whom God is said to have “never” known, and thus were strangers to His grace and adoption. Though this only in the sense off familial adoption, and not of His knowing all things, since in other places it is plainly declared that they were known and fitted to destruction from the very beginning.
“The key to this verse is knowing that the Greek words for come (as in shall come to me) and cometh (as in him that commeth to me) are different.”
An absurd little statement, and one you must know is also absurd, since you did not touch upon what it means that “all that the Father gives,” do come to the Son, and in the latter verse which declares that it was not given by the Father to the unbelieving Jews. That “coming” in this context means “to believe” is obvious, because Christ says ‘There are some of you that believe not.” And he goes on, ‘Therefore I said unto you, no man can COME unto me unless it is given by the Father.” Thus to come is to believe, and all those who receive it from the Father do believe. And those who do not receive it from the Father, do not believe.
So your argument collapses in on itself due to its own omissions.
“This is AFTER a person has made a commitment for Jesus, not before.”
And this you say without any scriptural proof, denying outright the scriptures which say that no man can call Jesus Lord, but by the Holy Ghost. And in another place, that it is not flesh and blood which revealed to Peter that Jesus is the Christ, but our Father who is in heaven.
Thus the knowledge that Jesus is the Christ comes from God, and all those who learn of the Father do inevitably come to the Son.
You also deny the scripture which says, “Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain: that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you.”(Joh 15:16)
Thus, we can only conclude that our choosing Christ is utterly dependent on Christ choosing us, and not for any good that He foresaw in our future, but for the purpose that we do good.
“They arent sheep because they didnt believe at that point. Nobody is Jesuss sheep until they believe. The verse doesnt prove what you think it does.”
Again, you deny the foreknowledge of God, even after using it to explain away such passages. Because if God foreknows His sheep, certainly they must all be His sheep, from His standpoint, from before the foundation of the world, though in time they have not yet been brought forward.
If what you say is true, Christ has no sheep from before the world began, since no one has yet to believe, and Christ’s declaration that they do not believe because they are not His sheep is completely nonsensical, since to not be the sheep is a natural condition, and cannot be an explanation for why they do not believe.
It only makes sense is God both foreknows and predestinates His sheep, so that they are Sheep by His divine grace, and the others are not sheep because He passed them by, leaving them to be “the children of disobedience” and of the devil.
“Christ, but it most certainly doesnt say that not all people are led to Christ or given a chance to believe.”
You deny the obvious and don’t even attempt to explain the passage in a way that makes sense for your world view. It is self-evident that they do not believe because it was not given to them to believe. What other reason is there to say “you do not believe... therefore I said unto you, no man can come unto me unless it is given by my Father?” According to you, it WAS given to them. So why explain their unbelief with something, you say, doesn’t explain it?
“That verse still doesnt say anything which would contradict that all people have a chance at salvation. All it illustrates is Christ prayed for different things at different times.”
The passage and, indeed, that entire chapter, most certainly limit salvation to those who are “given by the Father to the Son.” And, certainly, differentiates between those who are given, and those who are not given, as otherwise the whole world is “given.” And as for the claim that only the Apostles are given, in other places Christ plainly declares that He has sheep elsewhere, which He must shortly gather together. So all the sheep of God are those who have been given by the Father to the Son, and all of them must be gathered and will be gathered, with none left behind.
“Verse 30 is expanding on the last part of 29 which talks about those who chose God or the first born amoung the brethern. So if you accept Christ THEN you are justified, and glorified.”
This is barely coherent, since you don’t explain why God is said to infallibly justify and glorify all that He calls. Nowhere between verse 29 and 30 is there a phrase which says “and of those who accepted it, or were foreknown to accept it, were called, justified, and glorified.” It simply says that all whom God predestinated and calls are justified and glorified.
“Paul was talking about the difference between Jews and Gentiles. Before Jesus, the Jews had a unique relationship with God, but after Jesus, ALL have the same opportunity for a relationship with God.”
But notice you do not even attempt from the scripture to explain how it is in reference to Jews and Gentiles as groups, even though the immediate context is of the Jews, the seed of Abraham, differentiated between Abraham’s children of the flesh, and Abraham’s children of the promise.
Neither, because they are the seed of Abraham, are they all children: but, In Isaac shall thy seed be called. That is, They which are the children of the flesh, these are not the children of God: but the children of the promise are counted for the seed.
It is from here that Paul launches into a discussion of the election, of God choosing one over another, according to His own good pleasure.
There are also lots of other inconsistencies with your reading, since you do not even attempt to make a scriptural argument to support your claim, and so you bypass them all without note.
You also ignored all my arguments, and did not even attempt to explain or disprove them. Which, I suspect, is impossible for you to really do in any detailed way, other than by simply asserting that they are wrong.
“Romans 10:13 WHOSOEVER shall call upon the name of the Lord, SHALL be saved.”
That “whosoever” shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved, does not disprove that only those given by the Father can believe in the Son. After all, both are taught in the scripture. The Gospel is offered freely to all, but its effects are not all equal; it is an instrument of power and salvation to those who do believe, who are the elect, and a ‘savour of death unto death” for those who do not believe, seeing as how they reject such a free and easy forgiveness.
You also put forward that thing which I even took the time to correct myself, the idea that God makes it impossible for those who do not receive special revelation to believe. He simply passes them by, as I said, and they do not believe by their own will.
“but after Jesus, ALL have the same opportunity for a relationship with God.”
But notice the suggestion that exists within such statements as these. Was God unrighteous when He did NOT give that same opportunity to the Gentile world prior to Jesus Christ?
Furthermore, that not all have the same OPPORTUNITY is obvious, because Paul got stopped on the road to Damascus by Christ Himself. Others, in our own day, have not seen Christ, nor even heard of Him, and die all day long without having any opportunity at all to believe the Gospel. And this has been true for 2,000 years. Thus your argument is refuted by the simple facts of reality.
“If it was as you suggest, the NT should be filled with verses that say things like “for God so loved the elect...” or “if any elect hear my voice...” or “if any elect eat this bread...” No, the Bible clearly states salvation is available for ALL, not just a select few.”
This is just a reiteration of what you said before while ignoring the scriptures I have presented which utterly disprove your claims. Hopefully you will address them better in a week’s time. I also hope that you will also sort out the contradictions in your own claims as well, which I have pointed out.
“Nothing is absurd about digging into the deeper meaning behind words in Scripture.”
But you didn’t dig deeper into the meaning of a word. Nor does it appear that you read the whole sentence. Since you are trying to assert that the “those who cometh to me,” contradicts the “All that the Father giveth to me shall come to me.” I suppose you will then quote the word “eat” to prove the Roman Catholic doctrine of transubstantiation and eating the body of Christ, when quite clearly to eat is to digest Christ by faith? And to come to is to believe on Christ, as stated earlier?
And what’s the point of reading one word, when you don’t even bother to read the entire sentence? And so then you start saying silly things like ‘God gave us all life,” or “God is the prime-mover,” and this you took from “All that the Father hath given me shall come to me,” which has nothing whatever to do with anything you are saying.
“The point is, I agree that the stirring of our soul to follow Jesus does originate with the Father, but I disagree that some people are not ‘selected’ or allowed to believe/follow Jesus because they weren’t somehow chosen before their birth.”
Whether you disagree or not doesn’t matter to me, since you can’t rub out the scripture, no matter how long you talk about irrelevant things.
Discuss the issues all you want, but do not make it personal.
I’m not making anything “personal”, but I am honestly trying to discuss an issue. If you read both of our back and forth, I think you’ll more readily see that the person I was trying to have a discussion with was throwing out “personal” barbs, but I continued to try to keep it on topic.
But then maybe the person I was trying to have a discussion with is also you, the Religion Moderator???? I don’t know, but if you take the time to read all of my last post, you can see that this discussion is done and I tried to leave in peace.
The guidelines for the Religion Forum are different because the subject matter is particularly sensitive and therefore, inflammatory.
The main guideline here is to stay away from ad hominems which I word as "discuss the issues all you want, but do not make it personal."
The most common forms of "making it personal" involve attributing motives or reading the mind of another Freeper, personally. So when I see a remark of that type, I intervene on thread to avoid problems.
” I suspect we’re done here. Peace.”
We were done a couple of posts ago when you refused to answer questions.