God Who Creates
- The Decree: Trinity and Predestination
- Drama to Doctrine to Doxology: pp. 309-313 (Michael Horton, The Christian Faith)
Drama to Doctrine to Doxology acquaints one with critical points with respect to the doctrine of “predestination.” The simple definition of predestination is God’s decree. An eternal decree from the Godhead (i.e., the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit), which set into action a series of events that creation has been allowed to participate in.
The idea of predestination is a recurring theme that pervades both the Old and New Testament. For instance, God’s “counsel” in Job 38:2 and “purpose” in Isaiah 14:26 signify His perfect plan is in play. Moreover, Acts 17:26 explains that God’s decree encompasses the details of everyone’s lives including where and how long each person is to live. Beyond that, Matthew 10:30 discloses that predestination even accounts for minute considerations such as the number of hairs on each person’s head.
In short, God knows the developments of human history beforehand because they are all part of His perfect plan His. God’s foreknowledge of all things also includes knowledge of the elect (Romans 8:29), those among the human race who will be saved. This particular intricacy of predestination has sparked debates between leading minds all through out church history. Some suggests that this foreordination is unfair on God’s part. The truth of the matter is that God is not obligated to save anyone. Ultimately, salvation depends on the mercy of God not the will of humans (Romans 9:16). According to Romans 9:18-23, God eagerly saves some because of their belief (c.f. Romans 1:16; Ephesians 2:8) while others are condemn themselves in their unbelief (John 3:18; Ephesians 4:17).
In theology proper predestination usually addresses God’s decree concerning all things, not just election and reprobation. Reviewing God’s decree from creation to the consummation in Jesus Christ one can make several distinct observations. First, nothing evil exists in God (James 1:16-17). God’s decree is so grand that He is able to work sin and rebellion towards the greater good (Romans 8:28). Second, faithful believers can trust that God will not allow them to be overcome by sin. Third, predestination does not undermine the free will of human agents. Fourth, God’s salvation plan should give rise to praising Him.
As a born again believer in the knowledge that the Trinity predestined me for justification is thoroughly humbling. I understand that my faith is a gift of mercy from God that I do not earn or merit on my own. For this I am truly grateful. I praise God often for salvation and His grace. I also prayerfully worship God with most of all that I do. For the times that I do not, I pray for forgiveness and endeavor to repent from my sins.
As a believer this doctrine brings unspeakable joy to my existence. It also brings tremendous responsibilities. Predestined to partake in Christ’s life means that I am not my own. My life is intended for God’s purposes, i.e, living and preaching the gospel (#JESUSSAVES) as well as praying for those who have not accepted the Christ yet. I am also no longer to conform to the image of this world. Predestined means I must yield my human agency to the sanctification process conforms me to the image of Christ.