Doctrine of God: Election and Reprobation
February 14, 2021 Series: Great Doctrines of the Christian Faith
Topic: Default Scripture: Romans 9
Scripture Reading -> Romans 9
Review - Last Week
Last week we took a break from our sermon series and we discussed the importance of a name - lest we forget the reason for our sermon series...
We looked at several scripture passages and spent our time seeking to understand the importance of the name that Christians bear.
We spoke about how the underlying problem with most professing believers today is that we have forgotten our name.
We have forgotten to whom we belong.
For some reason, we think that we belong to ourselves.
- That we get to decide how we are going to live
- That we get to decide what commandments we will obey
- That we are the ones that are most important in our lives.
If we truly understood what it meant to profess Christ, we might see our lives dramatically change. We might see ourselves being, a bit more…
- poorer in spirit
- mournful for our sins and others
- meek in demanding our own way
- hungry and thirsty for the righteousness of God
- merciful in our dealings with others
- urgent in our striving for purity in heart
- interested in peacemaking according to the will/ morality of God
- willing to obey all the commandments of Christ at all times especially when times might be challenging and inconvenient
We ended our time together by looking at the tremendous support and encouragement that our Lord Jesus Christ has left us.
We were reminded that we are to cling to our Scriptures as those two sailors clung to their compass.
We were reminded that the Lord Jesus Christ gave us the Church and the Elders within it to guide us and to protect us.
We were reminded, that our sufferings and trials are not unique.
Remember, we spoke about the wrestling Christ Himself experienced in His humanity, and yet, rather than disobey God, He was obedient unto the point of death. (Philippians 2:8)
Certainly, none of us yet are being asked to be obedient unto the point of death so there isn’t any excuse for our lack of obedience.
As we took communion together, in the fellowship of the Church, with our brothers and sisters, we were comforted together in the remembrance of Christ’s struggles and His broken body and His shed blood.
We were sweetly reminded, that if we have a proper fear of God, then there any other fear of anything else in this world, pales in comparison.
That if we have the proper and healthy fear of God – we will live our lives such that everything we do will be done with an eye towards glorifying Him instead of pleasing ourselves.
What a wonderful time we had together last Sunday.
May God bless us as well this Lord’s Day as we obediently sacrifice and gather together to worship in the assembly of the saints.
Review - Predestination & Salvation
Two weeks ago, we left off our study of the Biblical teaching on Predestination by reviewing the State of Man.
The State of Man taught us that man is born in sin -lost and utterly consumed in sin with no hope of freeing himself or saving himself out of it. In fact, the Bible teaches us that we desire nothing else but sin.
Ephesians 2 teaches this as well as Romans 1.
The only way for us to be saved is through the grace of God and that only by Him first choosing us before the foundation of the world.
We ended that week with a call to understanding that it is because of God that you are able to call Him Father.
It is because of God’s determining from before the foundation of the world who will be His.
And we issued a call to live as if you belong to Christ.
Not as if you belong to yourself --- because you do not.
If you profess Christ, then you are to understand that Christ has
Purchased His own.
That they were bought with a price.
Therefore, we (you and I) are to be obedient to Him in all things.
With that foundation laid and being reminded of what we’ve last spoken about, let’s wrap up our study of Predestination.
We’ve said there are basically two parts to Predestination:
Election and Reprobation (being foreordained to everlasting death)
Before we get into what is meant by reprobation…
We first must spend time addressing some of the most common objections to the Biblical doctrine of Predestination.
All the various positions on Election (Predestination) can be broken down into:
- The Reformed View; and
- The Other View
Two Theories of Election in the Church
The Reformed View
- Holds that God first chose men unto salvation.
- (This is the view we’ve been describing and defending from Scripture)
The Other View
- Holds that man first chooses God;
- Holds that God chooses all men but
- certain men ratify the choice of God by
- deciding of their own will to serve God; or
- deciding to reject God
Hyper-Calvinism (A Perversion of the Reformed View)
It does not speak of election as those who have been known as hyper Calvinists.
- That if you’re elect
- in just one day,
- in a momentous event and you will be transformed.
- That we do not need missionaries or evangelism to preach the message because the message is irrelevant if you're elect you will be saved.
- Rather if you are elect you will be saved but your salvation comes through Jesus Christ for you are elected in him.
- Rather the message of the Gospel is essential as a means to the end which results in redemption.
Election Is Not Based on Foreseen/ Intrinsic Merit
- That not all those who were of national Israel were truly Israel.
- They were not truly converted.
- They are not all children just because they are the seed of Abraham.
- That to assume because you are a descendant of Abraham that you are a child of God is not true.
This is the same as if you expected unobstructed entrance into heaven just because you've spent your entire life in church....or if you've past a theological exam.
Election is Not Based on Works
There was a promise given regarding Jacob and Easu before they were born.
- Neither having done good or evil
- Neither one of them has come into existence yet
- The Point? That the purpose of God according to election might stand
It is to demonstrate:
- His will, his pleasure, and
- His purpose according to the doctrine of the divine election.
It is not based on works that He will love one another - It is of Him that calls.
It is of God who chooses one over the other.
All of this demonstrates God's divine authority in election and predestination.
- Jacob I have loved Esau I have hated.
Faith is Not the Ground of Reason for God Choosing
It is God who chooses.
- Faith for believing is the result of the application of the Spirit regenerating the heart to the work of Jesus Christ.
- Faith and good works confirm one’s calling and election
2 Peter 1:5-11
- Therefore, brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure where you do these things for if you do things ye shall never fall.
Objection: What if God hardens me, how can he still find fault with me? Is there unrighteousness with God?
- God will have mercy on whom He will have mercy.
- God will have compassion on whom He will have compassion.
- It is not of man.
- It is not because someone goes forth and tries to accomplish something that God will show mercy.
- It is that mercy is simply based upon God's own divine choice because it pleases Him.
God raised Pharaoh that He might show His power and that His name might be declared throughout all the earth.
There's an old saying the same sun that melts wax hardens clay... a good illustration of God.
Objection: This isn’t fair. Shouldn’t I have the right to choose?
- Hath not the potter the right?
- The clay did not choose.
- The clay does not have the right to even speak.
- The creator is the one who has the right to determine what he will do with one vessel and what he will do with another.
- God makes them for the end He determines so that He might make known the riches of His glory on the vessels of mercy which he had before prepared and for glory.
- Man's works are the result of God's election and not the ground or reason for election and predestination.
Objection: But I have lived a good life. Don’t I deserve to go to heaven?
- We are ordained to walk in good works but good works are not the foundation upon which God would choose us.
Objection: But I made a profession of Christ. I said the sinner’s prayer. Aren’t I now saved?
- You have not chosen me but I have chosen you.
- The fruit is not the basis.
- It is evidence of God's election not the ground or reason for the election.
- The Gentiles that believed were ordained to eternal life.
- Believing was not the ground of them being chosen and ordained into eternal life.
- Because they were ordained they were believing.
We are saved through faith alone – and that by the grace of God.
It is not us.
It is all Him.
We are His. We belong to Him. We are to live only for Him.
- Grace is unmerited favor.
- It comes through faith but the faith is not your work. It is the work, it is the gift of God not of works lest you could boast it is a sovereign act of God's mercy.
- Believing comes through Christ’s work. It is the application of the spirit.
Reprobation - Introduction
The doctrine of election naturally implies that some of the human race is not elected.
- That God purposes to save some.
- That God also purposes not to save others.
It is the decree of God whereby he has determined to foreordain some men unto condemnation.
Jude 4 – Ungodly men were foreordained unto wrath.
1 Peter 2:8 – They were ordained to condemnation.
Lamb's Book of Life
That God chooses individuals whose names are written down in the LAMB'S BOOK OF LIFE.
That those whose names are not written in the book of life of the Lamb are going to serve the beast.
That those whose names have been written down in the Lamb's Book of Life will serve God.
Revelation 17:8 – the elect are written in the book.
Application & Implication to Man (AIM)
All of this study and understanding leads us to one thing.
That is not arrogance or boasting or complacency.
But it is a strong and unyielding sense of comfort and trust in hope and security in the work Christ has done.
How do we know if this work has been done in us?
Christ gives us insight into this …
Are you truly trying to keep all the commandments of God?
- John 14:15 – If ye love me, keep my commandments.
If you love Christ, this is what you’ll desire….and, you’ll desire this if:
- 1 John 4:19 – We love him, because he first loved us.