It seems to me that if we have no choice at all in the matter of accepting a Sovereign God's intentions, desire or plan for us, then how can God have a relationship with someone who never willingly made his or her own choice? This baffles me.
That's because we are finite and He is infinite. You see we deserve eternal punishment in the fires of Hell, undergoing real torments, that are new everyday. And this is because we have offended an infinite and Holy God. When we are made to realize this and then understand that God's gracious mercy gave us what we never could ever deserve--love and forgiveness, then I don't think we will have any problem loving God, we won't complain that we didn't get to exercise our free will, for in fact we have been exercising it for years, and always using it to rebel against God and storing up more wrath. So we are thankful forever that God in His sovereign mercy reached down and "caused" us to make the right free will choice for the first time ever--to chose Him. It utterly destroys our human pride to realize that we couldn't do it on our own, and to admit that God is the Sovereign forever.
Now God has no problem loving us because He is love. Yes He knows we didn't deserve it, and that without His intervention we would have continued to reject Him, but he simply supernaturally opened our eyes and ears, so that we could see and hear, and therefore love Him. He will receive total love and adoration from us throughout eternity, and that is pleasing to Him.
Try to picture that you were the neatest guy in the world, but this one girl you loved wouldn't give you the time of day. She simply didn't really know you, and assumed you were a jerk. But you were very powerful and could control her environment and actions. You simply took the liberty to allow her to see who you really are. Once she got to know you she loved you with all her heart and soul. Now, you caused her to change her mind, because you controlled her environment to allow her to know something about you that she would have never known any other way. Her love for you is genuine, even though you had to help make it happen. Again, this illustration breaks down, for God not only controls the environment but also the heart, by planting grace in it.
You must be saying no one has a choice, except those God picks. And those He picks are those whom He empowers to be able to love Him and enter into a relationship. So, some are not picked, some are picked (chosen). Is this what you mean?
Yes, exactly. And those He did not pick, simply keep making their free will decision to reject Christ. God chose not to intervene and show them the light and truth. This was His choice, God was not a slave to His free grace. He did not have to elect everyone, He chose the ones he wanted and let the others go. We do know that the criteria that he used in selecting the elect was not based on any good found in us, for God saw us in "all" of our sins--for He chose us before the world began, but He knew all of our wickedness and sin from our birth to our death. This is truly amazing grace--now that's something to tell the unsaved!
Added to Bible Bulletin Board's "Tony Capoccia's Questions and Answers" by:
Bible Bulletin Board
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