Cancer has gotten me off writing these for a few months now but, back by semi-popular demand, I hope to get back in the swing of things.
You can find the previous posts here.
III. The Son
11. Do we believe in predestination, that everything’s been fixed by God beforehand?
Do we believe in predestination? Yes.
Do we believe everything’s been fixed by God beforehand?
The word ‘predestination’ is shorthand for the plan of salvation, revealed through Christ, in the mind of God.
The mind of God is eternal.
Nothing in God exists before or after or even synchronos with anything- nothing in God can come before anything else- it all belongs to a single thing: the timeless life of God.
Thus it’s quite silly to think ‘predestination’ means that you wrecked your car, for example, because 30 or 30,000 years ago God determined that you would wreck your car on such and such a day.
Predestination, like everything else with the life of God, has no date at all.
Predestination then does not refer to God fixing the vicissitudes of our lives beforehand because the ‘beforehand’ makes no sense if you understand the word ‘God.’
Christ alone is the Predestined One.
Not you or me.
Predestination instead refers to the predestination of Christ, which is but another way of professing that the life, teaching and sacrifice of Christ are not Jesus’ doing alone but God’s; that is, the life, words and witness of the human Jesus are in fact the self-revelation of the eternal, timeless God.
Predestination professes that the story of Jesus is actually a divine drama, and, divine, it is eternal, timeless, remedying our story of sin even as our concepts of ‘before,’ ‘after’ and even ‘simultaneous’ cannot possibly relate to it or explain it in cause-effect chronological fashion.
If ‘salvation’ names our being incorporated into this divine drama, then our ‘predestination’ means not that the events and actions of our lives have been determined beforehand but that our lives of faith are a part of God’s self-revealing in Christ.
“For those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the firstborn within a large family. And those whom he predestined he also called; and those whom he called he also justified; and those whom he justified he also glorified.” – Romans 8.29