Summary: Does man choose God or does God choose man? What does the Bible say about Free will?
Pastor Keith R. Bunch
Antioch Baptist Church of
1. How to be saved: (Eph. 2:8-9) "For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: not of works, lest any man should boast."
2. What does it mean to be saved (Born again)?
To have redemption, through the Blood of Jesus Christ the Only begotten Son of God, and to have forgiveness of sins; which enables us to have a relationship with God the Father through Jesus the Son.
3. What is a lost man’s condition?
(Rom. 7:18) "For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh,) dwelleth no good thing..." (Rom.3:10) "There is none righteous, no, not one" (Rom.5:12) "Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men..." (2 Cor. 1:9) "But we had the sentence of death in ourselves, that we should not trust in ourselves, but in God which raiseth the dead..." (Jer. 13:23) "Can the Ethiopian change his skin, or the leopard his spots? then may ye also do good, that are accustomed to do evil." (Rom. 8:7-8) "Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be. So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God." (Rom. 3:11) "There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God."
"Man is not partially or half dead, but completely "dead in sins and trespasses" (Eph. 2:1-3), and can choose no good thing because no good dwells in him. Because of the fall in the garden of Eden, man is sinful and because of his sin, he is "separated from God" (Isa. 59:2). Therefore the only will of man is the will to continue in sin."
4. Having established man’s condition, who then can be saved?
Those who Admit - Believe - Confess
(Rom. 10:9) "That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved." (Rom. 10:13) "For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved."
5. What compels mankind to turn from sin and to God?
(John 6:44) "No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him..." (1 Cor. 12:3) "no man can say that Jesus is the Lord, but by the Holy Ghost." (John 16:8) "And when he (H. S.) is come, he will reprove (convict) the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment." (Rom. 9:16) "So then it is not of him that willeth (desire), nor of him that runneth (effort), but of God that sheweth mercy."
"We must therefore conclude that depraved man will never make a decision to turn from sin and to God on his own. God must send the Holy Spirit to quicken man and give him the gift of faith which results in the confession of sin and belief in the truth. Does God extend this gift to all mankind? The fact that people are in Hell confirms to us that the answer is NO. If God extends the gift of grace to all of mankind, then all of mankind would be saved! We know that is not the case."
6. The gift of Grace cannot be rejected:
(2 Cor. 4:4-6) "The god of this world has blinded the minds of unbelievers, to keep them from seeing the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the likeness of God...It is the God who said, ’Let light shine out of darkness,’ who has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ."
7. But what about God’s part of salvation and man’s part?
(Jonah 2:9) "Salvation is of the Lord"
"In conclusion, the free moral agency of man, without the regenerating work of the Holy Spirit, is impossible as a means to Salvation. Man, apart from this work of God, can no more choose Christ than God can willingly choose to sin. Anyone who teaches that man, in his depraved state, is able to choose Christ and make Christ’s death on the cross effective teaches another Gospel, and is in danger of being accursed."