Election Is For Service Not Salvation
Part 2 of 3
Part 1 of this series focused on the many fallacies of Calvinism and there are many. Too many to enumerate in one post.
Calvinism raises so many questions that if you took each to its logical end, you would end up with a book, maybe a set, not just a post.
The previous post was intended to whet the appetite and set the stage for further investigation. The fallacies don’t explain Election or Predestination so the job isn’t done yet but they do reveal the questionable nature of Calvinism and that opens the door to a different approach.
So, what about Election.
First, a few preliminary thoughts.
More than any other word, Election has become the anchor for Calvinistic thought. Everything Calvinists teach about any subject in the Bible is tethered to the idea that God selected some for salvation and deselected everyone else.
Calvinists don’t like it when their ideas are framed in those terms and they’ve produced a litany of sophisticated-sounding prose to suggest that isn’t true but when you boil it all down, if any person is not saved and doesn’t get saved before they die, they were deselected.
As we go along, it will become clear why that is the logical inference of Calvinist teachings.
There are several key passages that need to be explained but before we get into those, a few foundational observations are needed first.
Election Is Too Common To Be Special
First of all, a word about the word Elecction.
The word Election is just one word. It isn’t a unique word. It wasn’t specially coined in the Old Testament or New Testament to carry a strange, weird, or unusual meaning.
The word was never intended to become a theological Shibboleth. It’s not even particularly spiritual.
The New Testament writers haven’t said enough in context to impregnate it sufficiently with the idea that God did something before we were born to divide humanity into two groups: the ins and the outs.
The word simply means chosen and it can apply to all kinds of things. Making choices (elections), is very common.
We choose what we wear and eat each day, what we watch on TV, what we read, think, and more.
We choose how punctual we are, how we act under pressure, who we marry, spend time with, vote for, and so on.
People choose careers, places to live, and methods for managing money.
But the choices we make are always qualified or should be. Careless people make random, unqualified choices and suffer badly as a result. Words like thoughtless, irresponsible, negligent, and imprudent describe the random-choice approach to life.
And that is exactly what Calvinists are suggesting about God.
Election Presents Opportunities
Sometimes we make good choices. Sometimes we make bad choices. The good news is after we make bad choices, we can still choose to learn from the experience. Sometimes we do. Sometimes we don’t.
Choices shape our lives they don’t define us. [Read more…] about Biblical Election Has Many Applications