Monday, July 28, 2008

Dr. Dabney on Foresight and Predestination

People who don't feel comfortable with the idea of God choosing us before we chose Him will sometimes argue that God looks into the future and sees how we will respond to His free offer, then makes His choice. This of course, flies in the face of Romans 9, but that aside, consider this rational argument from an 1800's theleogen:

Whether God's election of a given sinner, say, Saul of Tarsus, is based on the foresight of his faith, if God's foresight is eternal and omniscient then the outcome is certain, or else God did not see it correctly. Common sense says: no cause, no effect; an uncertain cause can only give an uncertain effect. Says the Arminian: God certainly foresaw that Saul of Tarsus would believe and repent, and, therefore, elected him. But I say, that if God certainly foresaw Saul's faith, then Saul's faith must have been certain to take place, for God cannot make mistakes. Then, if this sinner's faith was certain to take place, there must have been some totally certain cause insuring that Saul would believe. Now, no certain cause could be in the "free-will" of this sinner, Saul, even as aided by "common sufficient grace." For Arminians say, that this makes and leaves the sinner's will contingent. Then, whatever made God think that this sinner, Saul, would ever be certain to believe and repent? Nothing but God's own sovereign eternal will to renew him unto faith and repentance.

Clever isn't it? The argument is this: if God knows the future salvation of Saul with certainty then God knows that no matter what, something will happen to make Saul change his mind. But if this event causing Saul to change his mind is 100% certain then Saul is predestined by this event to change. It is far better to be predestined by God's grace and loving kindness than by some random accidental force.

1 comment:

kristi said...

wow, i'd never thought of it that way before....