Recently you made a statement in an answer to a question, that at the end you wrote a very "strange" thing I would like you to clarify to me if possible. You wrote: "God has never asked any one if He could save them (they would have said no), rather He just chose the ones He wanted." I thought about it and it sounded like human beings are like automatic robots programmed to sin and if God awakens some out of "caprice" they are saved. If God has power to love and save some machines, why would he let the rest of them go to eternal damnation instead of awakening and saving them too?
Now, we are not "automatic robots" although it may appear that way. Let me explain in very simple terms how the Doctrine of Election and Predestination works and I think you will see the answer to your question:
The Time: Before there was a universe, and maybe before there were even angels, since angels are, "...ministering spirits sent to serve those who will inherit salvation?" [Hebrews 1:14].
The Gift: God the Father decided to give a gift to the Son. The gift was to be a pure and holy bride that would love and adore Jesus for all of eternity.
The Problem: God the Father knew that this "bride-to-be" (consisting of humans) would not be pure and holy, and would also all hate and reject their chosen husband Jesus. God, who knows everything, knew that every human ever born would use their free will to reject Christ--this included Adam and Eve, Moses, Abraham, Mary, Joseph, Peter, Paul, and you and me.
The Punishment: The judgment due those who reject God's will, God's Commands, is eternal torment in the burning Lake of Fire.
The Dilemma: The chosen bride of Christ, the human race, was condemned to eternal torment, so the Lord Jesus would not have His Bride.
1. Allow the entire human race to be born, to live, and die and then suffer eternally for their sins, and don't give the gift of the bride.
-- But God had determined to give the Bride to the Son and cannot change His mind.
2. Allow the entire human race to be born, to live, and die and then suffer eternally for their sins, and create another "race" of people as the bride.
-- But God had determined to give the Bride (consisting of humans) to the Son and cannot change His mind.
3. Allow the entire human race to be born, to live, and die and forget about their sins and still give the Bride to Christ.
-- Can't be done, because the bride has to be sinless and holy, and also it would violate God's justice to not punish sin, because they had offend Him by their wickedness.
4. Find a perfect, sinless human who could pay for the offences to a Holy God that were committed by humans.
Problem: All the humans will become sinners, thus none are qualified to be a savior to the rest.
The One and Only Perfect Solution:
The Husband-to-be, Christ Himself, God Himself, volunteered to take off His royal robes and step off His throne and become a human and live a perfect life, and then die for the sins of the bride!
None of the human race want forgiveness of sin nor do they want to live a holy life because they love their sins. They don't want to be the bride of Christ.
God's solution: Don't ask, simply "elect" some (not all) for salvation.
God's Means of Applying the Forgiveness Because of the Death and Resurrection of Christ:
Here's an illustration that I have come up with that will give a picture of how the election process worked based on various verses of Scripture. Remember, it is only an illustration that tries to "picture" the process of election:
God, before he had created the universe or any person, had before Him the entire human race in His mind. Imagine billions and billions of men and women in a very long line, all facing God. Bible scholars estimate that since the creation of Adam and Eve there have been approximately 55 billion people on the earth.
So, imagine more than 55 billion humans all in a long line, and facing towards God. Each of these persons are sinners, some greater than others, but all sinners. All are condemned to the eternal fires of torment for the sins they will commit during their lifetime.
Now, imagine God the Father walking with the God the Holy Spirit, down this long row of humans. He is not asking if anyone wants to have their sins forgiven and become the Bride of Christ, for the answer from the "sinners" would all be, "No! Pick someone else," because they love their sin.
So, God the Father walks along and stops at person number 161 in the line, and says to the Holy Spirit, "Mark and seal this one as one of my 'elect' who will receive forgiveness of sins and live eternally with My Son Jesus." Then they stop at number 956, and the Father, says to the Holy Spirit, "Mark this one." Then they go down the line in a seemingly random fashion and stop at number 1069, and mark and seal another "sinner" for eternal life. They eventually stopped in front of me! If God would have asked me then, if I wanted to have my sins forgiven and become the bride of Christ, I would have said "No! ask somebody else!" But He didn't ask, He just told the Holy Spirit, "Mark him as 'elect.'" What was amazing is that the person on either side of me will have sinned less in their lives than I would, yet He chose me!
Well, when this entire "election" process was over there were two groups of people: the "elect" and the "non-elect." The non-elect were not "chosen" for eternal torment, rather they were left with their own free-will decision to reject Christ.
Now, after this election, the universe was created and men and women were born and lived and died. The "non-elect" live and sin and die and are thrown into the Lake of Fire (Rev 20:15), however, the "elect" live, and sin, and at a God ordained time in their lives, are given the gift of Faith, which they will exercise by Repenting of their sins, Believing in who Jesus claimed to be, and Submitting to His Lordship, and are thus Born Again. When they die they go into Heaven to enjoy eternal bliss with their Husband and Lord Jesus Christ.
Now, to answer your basic question, "If God has power to love and save some, why would he let the rest of them go to eternal damnation instead of awakening and saving them too?"
Because if fit His perfect will and plan. God is "just" in sending every man and woman into eternal judgment because of their sins. If He chooses to save "some" then that is mercy and grace, and God is not obligated to give grace or it would not be grace.
"Just as it is written: "Jacob I loved, but Esau I hated." What then shall we say? Is God unjust? Not at all! For he says to Moses, "I will have mercy on whom I have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I have compassion." It does not, therefore, depend on man's desire or effort, but on God's mercy. For the Scripture says to Pharaoh: "I raised you up for this very purpose, that I might display my power in you and that my name might be proclaimed in all the earth." Therefore God has mercy on whom he wants to have mercy, and he hardens whom he wants to harden. One of you will say to me: "Then why does God still blame us? For who resists his will?" But who are you, O man, to talk back to God? "Shall what is formed say to him who formed it, 'Why did you make me like this?'" Does not the potter have the right to make out of the same lump of clay some pottery for noble purposes and some for common use? What if God, choosing to show his wrath and make his power known, bore with great patience the objects of his wrath - prepared for destruction? What if he did this to make the riches of his glory known to the objects of his mercy, whom he prepared in advance for glory - even us, whom he also called, not only from the Jews but also from the Gentiles?" [Romans 9:13-24]
All the non-elect rightly deserve eternal judgment for their sins and God just lets them go, He doesn't interfere with their decision. But for the "elect" God gives them the gift of faith (Ephesians 2:8-9) that causes them to "choose" Christ.
I hope this "little" explanation helps you. I have numerous files on election and salvation on the website, which should explain it in more detail and have the supporting Scriptures.
Added to Bible Bulletin Board's "Tony Capoccia's Questions and Answers" by:
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