Free Will vs. Predestination: Did God choose me, or I chose Jesus because of my free will so that I can be saved?
We are God’s children because we are co-heirs with Christ. That offer and privilege were possible because we believed and received Jesus as savior. However, to say it was because we chose to is not entirely Biblical.
God does choose who He will save because He is sovereign. Hence the debate between Free will, Monergism, Synergism, and Predestination.
→ God is giving you one last chance.
1. Unconditional Free Will
We are free to make choices but with moral consequences. Man is either born good or born bad. Therefore it is up to him to make decisions. [John Cassian]
“… the gate is wide, and the way is broad that leads to destruction, and there are many who enter through it.”
2. Monergism: “God’s Will” leads to “My Will”
Although we still have general “Free Will,” Divine Monergism (Irresistible grace) holds that God works through the Holy Spirit to bring about an individual’s salvation through spiritual regeneration, regardless of the individual’s cooperation. [Reformed tradition]
“No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws him, and I will raise him up at the last day.”
3. Synergism: “My Will” and “God’s Will”
It holds that God works with us to be saved. Although it’s man’s “Free will to choose or reject Jesus,” God can choose to intervene and regenerate someone’s heart to come to Jesus and be saved. In short, salvation are by both “divine grace” and “human freedom to choose.” [Arminian Protestants]
“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.“
4. Predestination vs. Free Will
The fourth assumption is that we have “general free will.” However, because of God’s love and sovereignty, He predestined certain people to be saved.
He made sure their path led to Christ so they may believe. These are the people God sent the Holy Spirit or like Paul, revealed Himself. (John 6:44; Doctrine of election and predestination)
“Since they thought it foolish to acknowledge God, he abandoned them to their foolish thinking and let them do things that should never be done. Their lives became full of every kind of wickedness, sin, greed, hate, envy, murder, quarreling, deception, malicious behavior, and gossip.“
5. Predestined for hell
Likewise, God also foreknew “those who will reject Jesus” (where God doesn’t intervene) and let them be by allowing their “Free Will” to reject Christ (the reprobates).
Since they will never believe, their only hope is to pass the judgment before the Great White Throne of God. But who can stand sinless before a Holy God, who is also a just God?
“But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”
Bottom line, can God grant free will but overrides it for the sake of His elect?
Absolutely yes! God can override our unbelief. In fact, God has been putting fear and faith into the heart of men, which doesn’t mean He always does.
God’s foreknowledge does not interfere with our free will to believe Jesus. But the moment we do, faith begins because Jesus Himself is the author and perfector of faith. Do you believe Jesus?
“I will make an everlasting covenant with them: I will never stop doing good to them, and I will inspire them to fear me so that they will never turn away from me.“
“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.“