Another way to ask this question is, "Why do some get saved and not others?"
This, interesting enough, fits right in with where i left off on my last post. This question brings up a lot of other good topics of discusion. Not for the sake of debate but truly for the study of scripture to really see what it says about our God and how we are to respond to HIM.
Today while I was on my lunch break, I decided to do a mini bible study on this question. I was drawn to the book of John as I was listening to a Jonathon Edwards sermon in my truck. I stopped the cd and started reading John. I started at John 6:37 where it reads,
"All that the Father gives me will come to Me, and whoever comes to Me I will never cast out."
Then i kept reading and I ran into verse 44 which reads "No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws him."
In this passage we see not only how people come to Christ, but we also see today's modern view of God in salvation debunked. First let's look at what is proved to be false by this passage.
1. That Jesus is somehow powerlessly hoping, begging and waiting for sinners to come to Him and be saved (without much luck since not many are saved in the end). That He is some sort of "Bruce Almighty" type god who can't mess with mankind's "free will". This gives the implication that man's will is supreme over God's will and that God "can't touch that one". As if it is completely up to mankind to initiate, independant from God, the union with Christ for salvation.
2. That we who are in Christ, somehow decided to get smart and finally answer the call of Christ by our own will power and determination. How many Christians are full of pride because they believe they made the choice to follow Christ by their own determination. That they finally "let Jesus come in".
3. That others, who have not "made that choice" are more deserving of God's judgement than we are.
Now let's look again at what it does say. Notice the repeated phrase, "comes to Me". Who comes to Christ? Who does not come to Him? Who is able to come to Christ? Who is not able?
Look what it says, "No one can come to Me...". Why do you suppose Jesus says this? Well because it's true of course. It is this very same Jesus who revealed this very same truth to Paul. Paul penned this truth to the Romans in Romans 3:11 when he says "No one seeks for God". So here we see the problem. No one can come to Christ because no one wants to. That is what is lacking in the human will, namely, a desire for God. But He also continues by saying "No one can come to Me unless the Father, who sent Me, draws him".
John gives us an insight earlier in his book as to how people "recieve Christ". He says "But to all who did recieve Him, who believed in His name, He gave the right to become children of God, who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God." (1:12). This couldn't be any clearer in stating that when a man beleives or receives Christ, they are "born" because of the "will" of God. It was not brought about because of the will of man or a decision of man but because God determined it to happen. This should humble us to say that God is the only seeker. That Jesus came to seek and to save that which was lost. Jesus accomplished the task for which the Father sent him. Not that He came and died and rose again for the hope that some would seek Him. Look at the whole passage in John 6 starting at verse 37;
"All that the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never cast out. For i have come down from heaven , not to do my own will but the will of him who sent me. And this is the will of him who sent me, that I should lose nothing of all that he has given me, but raise it up on the last day. For this is the will of my FAther that everone who looks on the Son and believes in him should have eternal life, and i will raise him up on the last day.
So the Jews grumbled about him, because he said, "I am the bread that came down from heaven" They said , "Is not this Jesus, the son of Joseph, whose father and mother we know?How does he now say, "I have come down from heaven?" Jesus answered then, "Do not grumble among yourselves. No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him. And I will raise him up on the last day."
To be continued...