Mr. Hebacker always writes a good letter; interesting, thought-provoking and cause to Bible dive for an old Scripture spelunker. Thanks to him and the News-Sentinel for the discussion.
The question of man’s free will can be a stumbling stone trying to line it up with sovereign God’s omniscience and will. Often times we confuse self-will with free will and there is a distinct difference. Free will is our ability to freely choose between good and evil. Self-will is that which we choose and what we choose are two different things.
Of course man’s free will is limited by sovereign God’s word and will. All creation is dependent on and subject to its Creator — pre-external, self-existent, omniscient God. It all belongs to Him, and He can do what He wants with it. It exists for His pleasure, honor and glory. He cannot interfere, intrude, trespass nor encroach on what belongs to Him. He owes us nothing, yet freely gives us everything — a most gracious Father.
Scripture records that before the foundations of creation were laid, sovereign omniscient Christ pre-determined and foreordained in His infinite foreknowledge that the angel host and mankind would have free will, in order for us to be able to freely choose Him — believe, love and trust Him above all else, or not. Anything else would be pre-programmed and involuntary robotics.
From before the beginning, in God’s own mind, love and will, we were all predestinated to be able to choose to be sons and daughters, believers or not, to be what He wants us to be and to have all He predestinated us to have.
It’s not an elite exclusive club, but an all inclusive family open to all who choose it. Heaven is full of sinners saved by the grace of Jesus Christ alone, all we must do is be reborn — believe the gospel of Christ.
For your further interest and study: Ephesians 1:4-23; Romans 3:10-31; Romans 8:30-39; Ephesians 4:23-32 and 1 Peter 1:1-25; and Corinthians 15:1-8.
William Van Amber Fields