Maurice M Johnson
My subject today is "Irresponsible Predestinationists", "Irresponsible Predestinationists". If there are any human beings, or if there ever were any who could not know the truth concerning God's eternal power and godhead, the fact of there being the Creator, then of course that inexcusably ignorant one or those billions of inexcusably ignorant souls, could not be held responsible by a just and loving God.
Now that utterly contradictory statement is not a bit more contradictory than that of the extreme Predestinationists who teach that some are elected to be saved and all the rest are elected to be damned. They do not argue, as I brought out in former broadcasts recently, that mankind is utterly irresponsible. Only as to how whether or not he can be saved, that God is responsible for that they argue.
So let me reword that statement. If there are any human beings or if there ever were any who could not know the truth concerning God's eternal power and godhead, the fact of there being the Creator, then of course that excusably ignorant one or those billions of excusably ignorant souls could not be held responsible by a just and loving God. But the 99th Psalm, John the 1st chapter, Romans. the 1st chapter, Romans the 90th chapter, among many other scriptures, reveal that there is no such ignorant person for God Himself has showed those supernatural facts to all.
This whole subject of choosing is clearly stated in Isaiah 66 verses 3 and 4. Quote,
Yea, they have chosen their own ways, and their soul delighteth in their abominations. I also will choose their delusions, and will bring their fears upon them; because when I called, none did answer; when I spake, they did not hear: but they did evil before mine eyes, and chose that in which I delighted not.
Isaiah 66, verses 3 and 4.
If we cannot know the truth, we should never be accounted responsible of course. And today irresponsible agnostics are generally regarded as most intelligent and highly educated, if they have a lot of sheepskins from scholastic institutions or have obtained some high position in our agnostic civilization. It is bad enough for the increasingly lawless evolutionists to declare that men are irresponsible and ever changing animals, but it is far worse for theologians, clergymen, and their followers, to piously contend that we are mere cogs in the Almighty's irrevocable, unchanging, foreordained, predestined plan.
As I have been joyously declaring for several broadcasts, I unreservedly believe in the Bible doctrine of election, predestination, foreordination, divine calling and quickening. And, as I rightly divide the Word of God on these subjects, I learn that our sovereign God had decreed that Adam and his entire family be qualified to personally choose their course, their master. Of course, only God knows the age at which each human is capable of such choosing. Only willful text twisters can argue that God created Adam and Eve and put them in the Garden of Eden with no right or ability whatsoever to reject that old serpent, the devil and Satan. And then, that God then pronounced Adam and Eve, after they had done what they had to do, that God then pronounced them willfully guilty when what they were divinely forced, decreed, foreordained, elected, predestined to do.
The stubborn advocates of this distorted view of the sovereignty of God have various verbal tricks, wordy dodges: as they seek to avoid the naked errors and ugliness of their doctrine of irresponsibility. Probably no rational, mentally responsible person thinks a baby can disobey the laws of health and hygiene. That's why babies in the human family must have the guardianship of parents much longer than do the young of all of the other species in the animal family.
One of the most high sounding attempts at reconciling the utterly irreconcilable theories of those who teach that only certain ones are predestined to be spiritually saved and that therefore all others are likewise predestined to be damned is a statement about two expressions being over the door into salvation in heaven. We're smilingly told, that on the outside, on earth's side, man's side, we can see the gracious invitation, "Whosoever will may come." But those who thought they could and they personally willed to receive Christ as their Savior and Lord, will learn upon entering the heavenly door that on the inside of that door appears the absolutely contradictory declaration, "Chosen in Him from before the foundation of the world."
That is stupid, or dishonest trifling with God's Word. If such trickery is being planned by the thrice holy God, how does it happen that these extreme Predestinationsists, who give such arguments, have been able to peep inside the heavenly gate while they are supposed to able to now see only the earth's side of that entrance? The earth's side, 1 repeat what they claim, man's side, the temporal side, earth's side of the heavenly gate, has on it, "Whosoever will may come.," But once you accept the invitation and come, then you'll find on the inside, the heavenly side, "Chosen in Him before the foundation of the world." I repeat, that is making God a trifler, as well as a ridiculous inconsistent assumption on the part of those who say that's a fact. Because they see both statements now, according to their confused and confusing contentions.
Have you ever heard ... read, I mean to say, have you ever read Genesis 3rd chapter, Proverbs 1st chapter, John the 1st, and Romans the 1st. I urged the listeners in the last broadcast to do that, Please read Genesis 3, Proverbs 1, John 1, Romans 1.
While extending to guilty lost Adam and his fallen family His gracious and infinitely merciful invitations to come, "Come unto Me all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I'll give you rest," the sovereign God determines unchangeably exactly the result of man's choice. Christ said, "I am come that ye might have life", "But you will not come that you might have life". John 5:40, John 10:10. "He, that being often reproved hardeneth his neck, shall suddenly be destroyed, and that without remedy." Proverbs 29:1.
Those carefully built inverted pyramids of Calvinistic argument is demolished by one blow from the hammer that breaketh the rock in pieces, the Bible hammer. I refer to John 3:19. This, "This is the condemnation, that light is come in the world, and men love darkness rather than light, because their deeds are evil, and will not come to the light, lest their deeds should be reproved." John 3:19-20.
Very likely some of you are asking, "Isn't Maurice Johnson even going to mention the 9th chapter of Romans?" Yes. I'll do more than mention it, let's turn to it now. Several verses in this chapter are supposed to prove hard and fast election, predestination, from the beginning to the end of all men. A hasty reading of Romans 9 seems to support the theory that Abraham, Ishmael, Isaac, Jacob, Esau, and Pharaoh, by name, were elected by the Almighty as to their salvation or damnation. Careful and prayerful study of this 9th chapter of Romans and of all properly related passages however, reveal that the question of personal spiritual salvation is not once mentioned, in the 9th chapter of Romans. Abraham's two sons, Ishmael and Isaac were divided by God's sovereign choice. Divided how, and for what? In spite of Abraham's wish, his first son Ishmael, an illegitimate son from Sarah's handmaid Hagar, was not elected to be the father of the promised nation and the father of the holy son of Abraham, Jesus Christ. That elected son of Abraham was to be the son of promise, Isaac. His and Ishmael's personal salvation is not in question at all in the 9th chapter of Romans.
Exactly the same is true concerning Isaac and Jacob as dealt with in the 9th chapter of Romans. The next question dealt with here in Romans 9 is which of those two sons of Isaac has God chosen, elected, to be the son of Abraham through whom the promised nation Israel must come, and through whom the promised seed of Abraham, Jesus, was to come.
Just so with Pharaoh, the question of his personal salvation is not the subject at all in Romans 9. First, Pharaoh hardened his own heart and then God's wonderful miracles performed through Moses and Aaron in Pharaoh's sight, only hardened his willful heart all the more. Listen to 1 Samuel 6:6, "Don't harden your hearts like Pharaoh and the Egyptians did." 1 Samuel 6:6.
Pharaoh, my friend, was one of the men referred to in John 1:9. Christ is the light that lighteth every man that cometh into the world. That includes Pharaoh. Pharaoh was one of the 'all' referred to in Romans 10, Have they not all heard? Yea, verily, for their sound went into all the earth. And that's a quotation from the 19th Psalm. Pharaoh was one of the 'all' mentioned there. Pharaoh was also one of the 'all men' referred to in John 12:32. Christ said,
And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto me. This he said signifying what death he should die.
That of course fit perfectly, as I brought out in former broadcasts, with 1 John 2nd chapter, Christ is the propitiation, or the sacrifice, John the beloved apostle said, writing to Christians,
Christ is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world.
I repeat, that included Pharaoh.
The same of course, that truth is, as given us in John 3:16, "God so loved the world." Now I can just see, in my mind's eye, imagination, in the light of what I've seen many times in the past, I can see possibly some of you all but tossing your heads, "Now there he goes giving John 3:16." Yes, there I go giving John 3:16. What is it? I'll begin at the 14th verse,
And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the son of man be lifted up that whosoever,
how big is that, how comprehensive is that word, how inclusive is that word?
whosoever believeth on him might not perish, but have eternal life. For God so loved the world,
now that's the 'world' my friend that's as big as 'whosoever'.
That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not his son into the world,
not into a selected, elected, and foreordained, and predestined, narrowed down company who were to get a limited atonement.
God sent not his son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through him might be saved. He that believeth on him is not condemned, but he that believeth not on him is condemned already.
Why? Because he wasn't elected to be saved? No. Because he wasn't predestined to be justified? No. Because he wasn't called to be recreated? No.
He that believeth not on him is condemned already because he hath not believed on the name of the only begotten son of God.
And then that verse,
This is the condemnation that light is come into the world, and men love darkness rather that light because their deeds are evil, and will not come unto the light, lest their deeds should be reproved.
Those who seem determined to force parts of the Bible to prove their irresponsible predestination theory, often grab Romans 9:18. Quote,
Therefore hath he mercy on whom he will have mercy, and whom he will he hardeneth.
When shown the later passage on that very same subject, they usually duck, dodge, or refuse further consideration. But what is that later verse on the subject of God's mercy? Romans 11:32. We read there that He had pronounced judgment upon Israel "that he might have mercy upon all", "that he might have mercy upon all".
It seems almost unbelievable that extreme Predestinationists as Owen of England, Whitfield, George Whitfield, contemporary of John Wesley, Jonathan Edwards, Charles Haddon Spurgeon, and the justly famous (in their field anyway), the justly famous Presbyterian theologians Charles and A.A. Hodge of Princeton, contended consistently ... I say it's almost unbelievable that extreme Predestinationists as Owen, Whitfield, Jonathan Edwards, Spurgeon, Charles and A.A. Hodge, contended consistently that saved men and women not only could but should join the church of their choice. Even though the inspired Word of the sovereign God declares that saved sinners are no longer their own but have been supernaturally joined to the Lord by one Spirit. 1 Corinthians 1, read the whole chapter, and 1 Corinthians 3 verses 16-23, 1 Corinthians 6:15-22, and 7:23, and 1 Corinthians 12 verses 12-28, and then 2 Corinthians 6:16-18. Running the risk of wearying you, I'm going to read those again, hoping that many of you would like to jot them down and read them prayerfully. 1 Corinthians 1 the whole chapter, 1 Corinthians 3 verses 16-23, 6 (all these in 1 Corinthians), chapter 6:15-22, 7:23, 12 verses 12-28, and then 2 Corinthians 6:16-18.
These dear men who preached much glorious truth concerning the person of Christ and the gospel of the grace of God were guilty of exactly reversing God's order in the matter of His predestination, foreordination, election, and calling. God irrevocably chooses, predestines, foreordains, and elects only the result of man's free moral choice… [ ? ] for God, the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Once the choice is wholeheartedly made, man's choosing has ended. His Master from then on does the choosing. Now there's a sense in which of course, Christ is the master of the unbeliever because He determines where the unbeliever is going to go.
If we sin willfully after that we've received the knowledge of the truth, there remaineth no more sacrifice for sin, but a certain fearful looking for of fiery indignation, that'll destroy the adversary.
Hebrews 10. How clearly that presents the two phases of this subject of predestination as I have been bringing out. Man's choice: free, independent, God ordains, and inevitable. Man's choice, and then God's choice. Man's choice as to whether or not he will receive Christ as Savior and Lord, then God's choice as to the result of man's either choosing Christ as Savior or rejecting Him.
I repeat what I quoted awhile ago from Proverbs 29:1, "He, that being often reproved hardeneth his neck, shall suddenly be destroyed, and that without remedy." And then that crystal clear passage (well the one I just quoted then is crystal clear), but the one in Isaiah 66, "You chose against Me, I'll choose your delusions."
Probably the most frightful passage in the Bible (at least it seems to me it is) on this subject is in 2 Thessalonians where we're told that those who do not want the truth of God, who receive not the love of the truth, for this cause God will send them a strong delusion that they may believe a lie and be damned. What? God will send them strong delusion? Yes. And cause them to believe a lie? Yes. And as a result be damned? Yes.
Have you ever thought this way about the justice of God, the immutable, irrevocable rule, the sovereign rule of God? God has ruled, God has willed, God has decreed that Adam and Eve could choose. And He steeped back (I say it reverently), figuratively speaking, God stepped back from the creature Adam and Eve and allowed them to do what they decided to do. But they didn't decide the result, Almighty God did that. "In the day that thou eatest thereof thou shah surely die." When Eve followed the serpent and ate the forbidden fruit, she didn't decree the result; the devil had lied to her. He said, "You won't die. Your eyes will be opened and you'll become as gods, knowing good and evil." The devil decided something radically different as a result of Eve's disobedience, radically different from which God in His sovereignty had willed, decreed, and what happened.
Let me again plead with all of you who have received the Lord Jesus as your personal Savior to constantly remember that He's not merely our lamb, as John the Baptist said, "Behold the lamb of God which taketh away the sin of the world." Christian friend, Christ isn't merely our lamb, our fire escape, our scapegoat, He is all of that, thank God. But He's to be our Lord, and as the one and only Head over all things to the church which is His body.
All phases, branches, and degrees of organic evolution positively does and must inevitably destroy all fixed standards of right and wrong. Thus making those deceived by that philosophy to become irresponsible when it comes to moral, spiritual standards. And that's exactly the condition that obtains not only in our sophisticated, brain-washed college and university students, but of course their professors. The vast majority of all I'm able to gather on the subject, the vast majority of our modern -- even a lot of high school students, probably the vast majority of high school students today and college and university students as is their professors, are determined agnostics. That's from the Greek word 'a' (negative) 'gnosis' (to know): "I don't know".
Now that's not quite so bad if they would merely say "I don't know." But they say, "You don't know either, and nobody knows." Thus they are fulfilling, conforming like hot lead poured in a steel mould, they're fulfilling 2 Timothy 3, where Paul by inspiration said 1900 years ago, characteristic of what the last days of this present church dispensation would be, that men would be ever Learning, but never able to come to the knowledge of the truth.
You who believe in extreme (I hope some of you have quit believing in it), you who believe in extreme predestination, that is that some are predestined to be saved and only they can, and all others are predestined to be damned, you know that there's no basis whatsoever for your knowing that you are one of the elect. You may egotistically and presumptuously say you are, but how do you know -- if it's not recorded in the Word of God plainly? That whosoever believes on the Lord Jesus Christ, that those who come to Him He will in no wise cast out. If those are not positive unforced statements of the glorious fact that whosoever will may come. That you don't know whether you're one of those elect. And you are egotistical and presumptuous if you say you are. You better wait till you get on the inside and then turn around and look back upon the arch over the door then into heaven and see of you're one of the chosen. But of course, that's too late to wait. "Behold, now is the day of salvation, now is the accepted time." "Today if you'll harden not your heart," we read in the Old Testament Scriptures quoted in Hebrews.
Will some of you write me? Not because I want you to send me a penny, not a postage stamp; I'm not asking for that. But l would like to hear whether you believe that the truth that I've been bringing out are God's truth rightly divided. I'll be glad to send you free Christian literature ...(end of tape)
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