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Monday, November 12, 2012

Not My Fault

From time to time during the Bible Studies in which I participate, the subject of God’s sovereignty over individual salvation comes up.  Specifically it comes up in Romans 8 – 11, I Corinthians 1:30, and other places as well.  Today it came up in my time alone with the Lord in 1 Peter 1:1 – 3.  Note that Peter is speaking to a specific audience the elect or chosen.  In most of our English translations the word order varies significantly.  Typically if you see that between versions and translations look deeper.  There is something going on in the text, the translation philosophy of the committee, or the individual translation may have an ax to grind.  That is probably fodder for another post on which Bible to use…
We are pretty sure that our salvation is our choice, at least a lot of the people with whom I have talked this over with, seem to be strong on this.  Does the Bible - God agree?
Returning to the text...  Look at the words that Peter uses to describe our movement toward God…
  • Chosen
  • According to the foreknowledge of God
  • By the work of the Holy Spirit
  • In order to be obedient to Christ and benefit from His sacrifice
  • Caused to be born again
The bookends there “chosen” and “caused” give a lot of us heartburn.  We like to think that our salvation was our choice.  We moved toward God because of something that allowed us to understand His offer and we chose to accept it.  We, I chose, not God.

I do not know about you, but I do not see a whole lot in this passage that validates that position.  Peter seems to think it was God’s choice, not mine.  In that he seems to be echoing Paul in Romans 8 – 11.

Does that bother you?  If so why?  It bothers me.  Tomorrow I will share why…

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