Monday, April 11, 2011

Unconditional Election Makes the Great Commission Possible

I believe the Great Commission would be impossible apart from the doctrine of unconditional election. If the winning of souls were entirely up to us, we would undoubtedly fail. The only reason any evangelist has won someone to Christ is because Christ has already gone into the world ahead of him. Or, to put it in Star Trek terms, Christ has boldly gone where no evangelist has gone before.

The God who has determined the end has also determined the means, and that includes believers going into all the world to proclaim the gospel. God has said that his word "shall not return to me empty, but it shall accomplish that which I purpose, and shall succeed in the thing for which I sent it" (Isaiah 55:11). That is encouraging news for every believer.

11 comments:

Mike said...

Amen to that.

Mike Erich the Mad Theologian said...

I think it would for me be overwhelming to try to evangelize if I believed it ultimately depended on me and what I did rather than the power of God. To take this seriously would be a very scary thing.

Rev. said...

And another Amen to that!

Michael Acidri said...

I wonder what my arminian friends will say to that. Seeing that they usually love the role of being "Soul winners".

William Watson Birch said...

Well, I guess your Arminian brother would say that the Great Commission actually is not impossible apart from the doctrine of unconditional election since God is gloriously saving people by grace through faith in Christ among those who hold to conditional election. Such would be not only impossible to refute but also makes the Calvinist's claim in the post impossible to maintain.

God bless ; )

Robert Warren said...

Mr. Birch:

I don't think the post is saying that one must hold to the doctrine to be effective in evangelism, but that the practical outcome of unconditional election makes evangelism possible.

Lee Shelton IV said...

Yes, Robert, you summed it up perfectly. I shudder to imagine what would happen if the results were not guaranteed but left up to us. We know, however, that all of God's elect will hear the gospel and will respond.

William Watson Birch said...

Robert,

I realize that -- I'm just playin'. I (and I should hope most Arminians) agree wholeheartedly that the "winning of souls" is not "entirely up to us." God is not bound to our inadequate models and (at times failed) attempts at sharing the gospel adequately.

Rev. said...

Two passages which come to mind... Acts 13:44-49 & 2 Timothy 2:10.

Robert Warren said...

Mr. Birch:

Oops...sorry I didn't catch that. Maybe I need
this

William Watson Birch said...

Lol . . . I always get a great dose of TBNN; it helps keep me sane.

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