Saturday, May 22, 2010

Predestination / Free Will (5a)

First: Irresistible Grace

• Saving grace is always effectual, efficacious, or operative
• God will not be thwarted in His purpose of saving the elect. Every one of His chosen people was redeemed by Christ and will certainly be efficaciously called to faith by the Holy Spirit.
• Distinguishes the external call of the Gospel from the internal call of the Holy Spirit.
• The Calvinist doctrine of Irresistible Grace specifically deals with the regenerating grace of salvation; it does not mean that we cannot resist the grace of God in our daily lives. We certainly can and do!
• The objection: No regeneration is required prior to faith, because God’s Word alone can be effective in drawing. The answer: God’s Word works with the Holy Spirit to accomplish regeneration (efficacious calling).
• Does a person decide to be physically born? Does a person decide to be spiritually born?
• Consider John 6:44,65: “No one can come unless the Father draws him.” The word “DRAWS” is the Greek word “ELKO.” It means literally “to compel.” Consider “drawing” (ELKO) water from a well. Can you woo it out?

• Scripture:
“So is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it.” (Isaiah 55:11)
“I have surely heard Ephraim’s moaning: ‘You disciplined me like an unruly calf, and I have been disciplined. Restore me, and I will return, because you are the LORD my God.’” (Jeremiah 31:18)
“I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh. And I will put my Spirit in you and move you to follow my decrees and be careful to keep my laws.” (Ezekiel 36:26-27)
“Then Jesus declared, ‘I am the bread of life. He who comes to me will never go hungry, and he who believes in me will never be thirsty. But as I told you, you have seen me and still you do not believe. All that the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never drive away. For I have come down from heaven not to do my will but to do the will of him who sent me. And this is the will of him who sent me, that I shall lose none of all that he has given me, but raise them up at the last day. …It is written in the Prophets: ‘They will all be taught by God.’ Everyone who listens to the Father and learns from him comes to me.’” (John 6:35-39,45)
“The watchman opens the gate for him, and the sheep listen to his voice. He calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. When he has brought out all his own, he goes on ahead of them, and his sheep follow him because they know his voice. …I am the good shepherd; I know my sheep and my sheep know me—just as the Father knows me and I know the Father—and I lay down my life for the sheep. 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. …My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one can snatch them out of my hand. My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all; no one can snatch them out of my Father’s hand.” (John 10:3-4,14-16,27-29)
“When the Gentiles heard this, they were glad and honored the word of the Lord; and all who were appointed for eternal life believed.” (Acts 13:48)
“And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the likeness of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. And those he predestined, he also called; those he called, he also justified; those he justified, he also glorified.” (Romans 8:28-30)
“But by the grace of God I am what I am, and his grace to me was not without effect. No, I worked harder than all of them—yet not I, but the grace of God that was with me.” (1 Corinthians 15:10)

• Conclusion: God’s saving grace always accomplishes its purposes. It will not fail; it cannot fail.

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