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   In the 9th chapter of Romans verses 9-19 there is a topic that I've heard discussed and am unsure of how to answer and would appreciate some input concerning this.

    In this section it speaks of God choosing certain people from the womb to fulfill His purposes whether for good or bad (from a human standpoint that is) . Paul seems to be answering an accusation from someone that God was unjust because He was not even giving the people a chance for salvation before they were ever born (ie -Pharoh and Esau).

 

  To answer this Paul quotes (in verse 15) that God told Moses "I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy". Then in verse 19 Paul states the retorical question "Why does He (God) yet find fault? For who can resist His (God's) will ?

 

   This 'seems' to imply that God arbitrarily dispenses mercy and therefore salvation is 'not' available for everyone.  I hasten to add that there is no one who believes more in the absolute sovereignty of God so please do not think that I am accusing God of being'unjust'.

 

It's just that this is a difficult concept to explain in light of  the scriptures that speak of salvation being available to everyone.

 

  Again, I would greatly appreciate some input on this subject.

 

God bless

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Amanda,

 

Clean up my bad grammar and spelling. Not sure is any better now :) but I ran spell checker.

PS David,

Because I believe we have a choice at the time of salvation, I believe grace is resistable. I also believe God gives more grace to the humble but resists the proud. Does that happen at the time of salvation? We can't earn the grace to be saved. So I would say no. I still believe the atonement is unlimited. So that's where I am at this time. Thank you for your responses. Love you, bro.

Amanda,

 

This response does not originate with me. Is from my notes and Got Questions.com :

Irresistible Grace - …those whom God effectually calls necessarily come to full salvation:

"Those whom (God) predestined He also called, and those whom He called He also justified, and those whom He justified He also glorified" (Romans 8:28-30).

John 6:37,39: "All that the Father gives me will come to me.... And this is the will of Him who sent me, that I should lose nothing of all that He has given me, but raise it up on the last day."[ESV]

John 6:44–45: "No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him.... Everyone who has heard and learned from the Father comes to me."[ESV]

John 6:65: "(N)o one can come to me unless it is granted him by the Father."[ESV]

- Proponents of Arminianism argue that the word "draw" (Greek: ἕλκω, helkô)[13] as used in John 6:44 does not require the sense of "drag", though they admit this is the word's usual meaning (as in Jn. 18:10; 21:6; 21:11; Acts 16:19; 21:30; Jas. 2:6). They point to John 12:32 as an example: "And I, when I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all people to myself." Arminians interpret this to mean that Jesus draws all people to Himself, but some are able resist this drawing since, if the call is truly irresistible, then all must come to Christ and be saved. They may also note that in the Septuagint version of Jeremiah 38:13, when Jeremiah is lifted out of the pit where he was left to die, this Greek verb is used for the action which his rescuers performed after he voluntarily secured the ropes under his armpits, and that this rescue was certainly performed in cooperation with Jeremiah's wishes. Therefore, they may argue, even if the semantics of "draw" are understood in the usual sense, this should only be taken to indicate the source of the power, not the question of whether the person being drawn independently desires the drawing, or to indicate that the drawing is done irrespective of their wishes.

Calvinists argue that (1) the word "draw" should be understood according to its usual semantics in both John 6:44 and 12:32; (2) the word "all" (translated "all people" in v. 12:32) should be taken in the sense of "all kinds of people" rather than "every individual"; and thus (3) the former verse refers to an irresistible internal call to salvation and the latter to the opening of the Kingdom of God to the Gentiles, not a universal, resistible internal call.

Arminian William Barclay argues that "man's resistance can defeat the pull of God" mentioned in John 6:44, but commentator Leon Morris contends that "(n)ot one of (Barclay's) examples of the verb ('draw') shows the resistance as successful. Indeed we can go further. There is not one example in the New Testament of the use of this verb where the resistance is successful. Always the drawing power is triumphant, as here.

 

We must distinguish between a resistible, outward call to salvation given to all who hear the free offer of the gospel, and an efficacious, inward work by the Holy Spirit. Every person is unwilling to follow the outward call to salvation until, as the Westminster Confession puts it, "being quickened and renewed by the Holy Spirit, he is thereby enabled to answer this call, and to embrace the grace offered and conveyed by it."[7] Once inwardly renewed, every person freely follows God and his ways as "not only the obligatory but the preferable good,"[8] and hence that special renewing grace is always effective.

Question: "Irresistible Grace - is it biblical?"

Answer:
“Irresistible grace” is a phrase that is used to summarize what the Bible teaches about the supernatural work of the Holy Spirit in the salvation of sinners. It is represented by the “I” in the acronym TULIP that is commonly used to enumerate what are known as the five points of Calvinism or the doctrines of grace. The doctrine is also known as “effectual calling,” “efficacious grace,” “efficacious call of the Spirit,” and “transformed by the Holy Spirit.” Each of these terms reveals some aspect of what the Bible teaches about the doctrine of irresistible grace. However, what is important is not the name assigned to the doctrine but how accurately the doctrine summarizes what the Bible teaches about the nature and purpose of the work of the Holy Spirit in the salvation of sinful, spiritually dead men. No matter which name you use to refer to the doctrine of irresistible grace, a thorough study of the Bible will reveal that, when properly understood, it is an accurate description of what the Bible teaches on this important subject.


Simply put, the doctrine of irresistible grace refers to the biblical truth that whatever God decrees to happen will inevitably come to pass, even in the salvation of individuals. The Holy Spirit will work in the lives of the elect so that they inevitably will come to faith in Christ. The Bible teaches that the Holy Spirit never fails to bring to salvation those sinners whom He personally calls to Christ (John 6:37-40). At the heart of this doctrine is the answer to the question: Why does one person believe the gospel and another does not? Is it because one is smarter, has better reasoning capabilities, or possesses some other characteristic that allows him to realize the importance of the gospel message? Or is it because God does something unique in the lives of those whom He saves? If it is because of what the person who believes does or is, then in a sense he is responsible for his salvation and has a reason to boast. However, if the difference is solely that God does something unique in the hearts and lives of those who believe in Him and are saved, then there is no ground for boasting and salvation is truly a gift of grace. Of course, the biblical answer to these questions is that the Holy Spirit does do something unique in the hearts of those who are saved. The Bible tells us that God saves people “according to His mercy…through the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit” (Titus 3:5). In other words, those who believe the gospel and are saved do so because they have been transformed by the Holy Spirit.



The doctrine of irresistible grace recognizes that the Bible describes natural man as “dead in his trespasses and sins” (Ephesians 2:1; Ephesians 2:5; Colossians 2:13), and, because man is spiritually dead, he must first be made alive or regenerated in order to understand and respond to the gospel message. A good illustration of this is seen in Jesus raising Lazarus from the dead. In John 11:43, it is recorded that Jesus told Lazarus to “come forth” and that Lazarus came forth out of the tomb. What had to happen before Lazarus—who had been dead for several days—would be able to respond to Jesus’ command? He had to be made alive because a dead man cannot hear or respond. The same is true spiritually. If we are dead in our sins, as the Bible clearly teaches, then before we can respond to the gospel message and believe on the Lord Jesus Christ we must first be made alive. As Jesus told Nicodemus in John 3:3, one must be “born again to see the kingdom of God.” John 1:12-13 tells us that being born again is not the result of something we do—“the will of man”—but is a sovereign act of God. Just as Lazarus could not bring himself back to life or respond to Jesus’ command without being brought back to life, neither can sinful man. Ephesians 2:1-10 makes it very clear that while we are still dead in our trespasses and sin God makes us alive. The Bible is also clear that the act of being born again or regenerated is a sovereign act of God. It is something He does which enables us to believe the gospel message, not something that comes as a result of our belief.


The reason this doctrine is called “irresistible” grace is that it always results in the intended outcome, the salvation of the person it is given to. It is important to realize that the act of being regenerated or “born again” cannot be separated from the act of believing the gospel. Ephesians 2:1-10 makes this clear. There is a connection between the act of being made alive by God (Ephesians 2:1, 5) and the result of being saved by grace. (Ephesians 2:5, 8). This is because everything pertaining to salvation, including the faith to believe, is an act of God’s grace. The reason God’s grace is irresistible and efficacious (always bringing forth the desired result) is that God “has delivered us from the power of darkness and conveyed us into” His kingdom (Colossians 1:13). Or, as Psalm 3:8 puts it, “Salvation belongs to the Lord.”



To understand the doctrine of “irresistible grace,” it is important to recognize that this is a special grace given only to those God has chosen for salvation (His elect) and is different from what is known as “common grace” which God bestows on both believer and unbeliever. While there are many aspects of common grace, including life and all that is necessary to sustain it, common grace is what is often referred to as the “outward call of God.” This is God’s revelation of Himself given to all men through the light of creation and their consciences. It also includes the general call of the gospel that goes out anytime the gospel message is preached. This call can be resisted and rejected by those that receive it. (Matthew 22:14; Romans 1:18-32). However, God also gives an “inward call” which always results in salvation. This is the call of God that Jesus spoke of in John 6:37-47. The certainty of this inward call is seen in John 6:37: “All that the Father gives Me will come to Me, and the one who comes to Me I will by no means cast out.” John 6:44 confirms this: “No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him and I will raise him up at the last day.”



Other verses where irresistible grace can be seen include 2 Corinthians 4:1-6; Acts 13:48; Acts 16:14 and Romans 8:30. In 2 Corinthians 4:1-6, after explaining why some people do not believe the gospel (it is veiled to them and their minds have been blinded toward it), Paul writes, “For it is the God who commanded light to shine out of darkness, who has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ” (2 Corinthians 4:6). The God who said, “Let there be light” (Genesis 1:3) is the same God who gives the light of salvation to those He chooses, and the result is just as sure. The same truth is seen in a different way in Acts 13:48. Here it is said that “as many as had been appointed to eternal life believed.” God saves those He chooses to save; therefore, His saving grace is always effective or efficacious. In Acts 16:14, we have another example of God’s irresistible grace in action. The Lord opened the heart of Lydia “to respond the things spoken of by Paul.” Finally you have what is called the “golden chain of redemption” in Romans 8:29-30. Here we see that everyone God calls to salvation (the inward call) will be saved (justified).



A common misconception about the doctrine of irresistible grace is that it implies men are forced to accept Christ and men are dragged kicking and screaming into heaven. Of course, neither of these is an accurate description of the doctrine of irresistible grace as revealed in the Bible. In fact, the heart of irresistible grace is the transforming power of the Holy Spirit whereby He takes a man dead in his trespasses and sins and gives him spiritual life so that he can recognize the surpassing value of God’s offer of salvation. Then, having been set free from the bondage of sin, that man willingly comes to Christ.



Another misconception concerning this doctrine is that it teaches the Holy Spirit cannot be resisted at all. Yet, again, that is not what the doctrine teaches because that is not what the Bible teaches. God’s grace can be resisted, and the Holy Spirit’s influence can be resisted even by one of the elect. However, what the doctrine does correctly recognize is that the Holy Spirit can overcome all such resistance and that He will draw the elect with an irresistible grace that makes them want to come to God and helps them to understand the gospel so they can and will believe it.



The doctrine of irresistible grace simply recognizes that the Bible teaches God is sovereign and can overcome all resistance when He wills to. What God decrees or determines will come to pass. This truth is seen throughout Scripture. In Daniel 4:35, we see that “He does according to His will in the host of heaven and among the inhabitants of the earth; and none can stay His hand!” Psalm 115:3 declares, “Our God is in the heavens; He does whatever He pleases.” God’s grace in salvation is irresistible because when God sets out to fulfill His sovereign purpose, no person or thing can successfully resist Him.


The doctrine of irresistible grace accurately summarizes what the Bible teaches about the nature of saving faith as well as what must happen to overcome man’s depraved nature. Since natural man is dead in his trespasses and sins, it stands to reason that he must be regenerated before he can respond to the outward call of the gospel. Until that happens, man will resist the gospel message and the grace of God; however, once he has been “born again” and has a heart that is now inclined toward God, the grace of God will irresistibly draw Him to put his faith in Christ and be saved. These two acts (regeneration and faith) cannot be separated from one another. They are so closely connected that we often cannot distinguish between them.



Read more: http://www.gotquestions.org/irresistible-grace.html#ixzz2dmBkuHq4

David Velasquez ,

    I do think you are a chosen one only because you say you are. I am curious as to how you know you are? Is it because of Gods promises or because of what happened to you in prison, when you felt his presence?  How is it you know you are one of the few chosen if you believe all arent?  I know you have said before its not feeling but yet I remember you saying you "felt" when he first came to you. How can someone know they are a chosen if no feeling? How does someone know they aren't a chosen one? What if they think God may not be wanting to show mercy to them. I am trying to stay away from this forum discussion... because yall are all scalars and I am hick grade school. But this is serious.

and if it is because of Gods promises , then how does one know that they are for them too?

 

Janie,

 

Great questions.

 

I know I am among the elect because I God changed me. He changed me. I am not the man I was. For me it was more radical than for millions. Some people don't even know when they became born again, but they know they are for their faith is not dead.

 

God changes us and we then do works that manifest God's interior work in us. We know the motives of the works. We know why we do what we do. I do what I do because I love him. I love him because He loved me first. While I was still a sinner, Christ died for me. He died for me. He redeemed me. His blood has made me clean and my faith is not dead, no boasting here, but my faith is not dead. I love God's people and God.

 

I don't believe there are only a few chosen ones. I believe what the bible teaches, that there will be people in heaven as the sands of the sea or the starts of heaven. There will be a sea of people who have been saved by God in heaven. Our prayers for our love ones are essential since they also come into play in to what God has designed as part of his salvation will and plan.

 

>>How can someone know they are chosen if there are no feeling?

 

 

Their love for God and for his ways will be obvious in their life. Like is in yours. You can't stay away because God is in you. You can't stop asking for your love ones, because the love of God is in you. If you still think you are not his child, than settle it today, for today is the day of salvation. If you are tire of not knowing. Asked God to forgive you of all your sins, sins which you have committed against him and for which you will have to answer to him, if you don't repent. Do you believe Christ is Lord and do you receive him as the risen Lord? If you do, if you have a broken heart about your sin and you believe Christ is Lord of your life and you ask him to save you than you will find rest. :)

 

God bless you and give you conviction of your sin, so you can experience Godly sorrow which leads us to repent.

 

>>How does someone know they aren't a chosen one?

 

When they find that God has allowed them to experience the consequences of their rebelliousness against him.

 

>>What if they think God may not be wanting to show mercy to them.

 

They have to be told that they are wrong then. Scripture teaches that God desires all people to be save. Now that does not mean all people will be saved or that he orders with his sovereign will that all people are saved, but it does mean that his desire is that men repent.

 

Thank you for your questions beloved. :)

 

To all who have responded

 

I thank you for your input and begin to realize that this is a very controversial subject and that there is no real 'pat' answer to give to anyone. I will make one final observation on the subject after reading the many varied responses to the  subject.

 

 I must first explain that this subject came to my mind upon hearing (which I have heard many times before) that there is no point in witnessing to people because ' God has alread chosen who will be saved'. While I personally believe that God knows who will or will not recieve the gospel ( because of His absolute sovereighnty and knowledge) , it does not excuse us from obeying what is referred to as 'the great commission'.

 

I say this simply because ,just because 'God knows' doesn't mean that 'we know' . Nor does God ( in my opinion only) have any obligation whatsoever to reveal this to us. Again, I say this simply because I believe ( again , my opinion only) that God wants us to have a love for all men and to have the desire to see all come to Him. Therefore we must share with all and leave the results to God. He doesn't judge us on who accepts the words we bring He simply judges us on our desire ( out of love and appreciation to Him) to present the 'gospel to all' as we have been told to do. It's more a matter of where our heart is and not how effective we may believe we are. He asks only obedience and faithfulness.

 

I really am reluctant to use this analogy as there is a potential misunderstanding in it but it speaks to me personally. In past times ( during the Viet Nam conflict) the expression was used "kill them all and let God sort them out".  This was an expression used by men who , in the confussion of this conflict began to doubt who was the enemy or the friendly so therefore they would simply kill anyone who was not american.

 

As I said , this is a bad analogy but it makes my point in this way. We are to pesent the gospel to all and let God do the convicting and saving according to His sovereign will. We cannot say who God will or will not have mercy on we must treat all as though He will have mercy on them. T his must be out of a love for God for the mercy He has shown us through Christ Jesus.

 

Again I want to thank all who who have responed and may God bless us as we show the mercy that has benshown to us.

Charles,

 

>>I must first explain that this subject came to my mind upon hearing (which I have heard many times before) that there is no point in witnessing to people because ' God has already chosen who will be saved'.

 

It is sad that there are those who believe that a logical conclusion to be attained from the biblical teaching of election and predestination is the lack of necessity to preach the Gospel. That is very incorrect and not found in scripture. We must preach the Gospel to ALL, if for nothing else, because God commands us to.

 

However the doctrine of election and God's predestination is suppose to have the opposite result in our lives. It should actually encourage us to evangelize. We know that there is a people Christ died for and they will receive Jesus as Lord and Savior. Hence we should go out expecting conversions.

 

Blessings beloved.

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