Thursday, June 11, 2015

Jerome Zanchius on Double Predestination

Now, this twofold Predestination, of some to life, and of others to death, (if it may be called twofold, both being constituent parts of the same decree) cannot be denied, without likewise denying, 1. most express and frequent declarations of Scripture, and, 2. the very existence of God: for, since God is a Being perfectly simple, free from all accident and composition; and yet, a Will to save some and punish others is often predicated of Him in Scripture; and an immovable decree, to do this; in consequence of His will, is likewise ascribed to Him; and a perfect foreknowledge of the sure and certain accomplishment of what He has thus willed and decreed, is also attributed to Him; it follows, that whoever denies this will, decree, and foreknowledge of God, does, implicitly deny God Himself: since His will, decree, and foreknowledge are no other than God Himself willing and decreeing and foreknowing...

We assert, that, as all men, universally, are not elected to salvation; so neither are all men, universally, ordained to condemnation. This follows from what has been proved already: however, I shall subjoin some farther demonstration of these two positions.

(1) All men universally are not elected to salvation.

And first, this may be evinced a posteriori: 'tis undeniable, from Scripture that God will not, in the last day, save every individual of mankind – Dan. 12:2; Mat. 25:46; John 5:29. Therefore, say we, God never designed so save every individual: since, if He had, every individual would and must be saved, for, “His counsel shall stand, and He will do all His pleasure.” … Secondly, this may be evinced, also, from God's foreknowledge. The Deity, from all eternity, and consequently, at the very time He gives life and being to a reprobate, certainly foreknew, and knows in consequence of His own decree, that such an one would fall short of salvation: now, if God foreknew this, He must have predetermined it because His own will Is the foundation of His decrees, and His decrees and the foundation of His prescience: He therefore foreknowing futurities, because by His predestination, He hath rendered their futurition certain and inevitable. Neither is it possible, in the very nature of things, that they should be elected to salvation, or ever obtain it, whom God foreknew should perish: for then the Divine act of preterition would be changeable, wavering, and precarious; the Divine foreknowledge would be deceived and the Divine will impeded, all of which are utterly impossible. Lastly, that all men are not chosen to life, nor created to that end is evident in that there were some who were hated of God before they were born (Rom. 9:11-13), are fitted for destruction (vs. 22), and made for the day of evil (Prov. 16:1).


(2) All men universally are not ordained to condemnation.

There are some who are chosen (Mat. 20:16):An election, or elect number, who obtain grace and salvation, while the rest are blinded (Rom. 11:7), a little flock, to whom it is the Father's good pleasure to give the kingdom (Luke 12:32), a people whom the Lord hath reserved (Jer. 50:20), and formed for Himself (Isa. 43:21), a peculiarly favored race, to whom it is given to know the mysteries of the kingdom of Heaven; while, to others, it is not given (Mat. 13:11), a remnant according to the election of grace (Rom. 11:5) whom God hath not appointed to wrath, but to salvation by Jesus Christ (1 Thess. 5:9) – in a word, who are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people, that they should shew forth the praises of Him, who hath called them out of darkness into His marvelous light (1 Pet. 2:9), and whose names, for that very end, are in the book of life (Phil. 4:3) and written in Heaven (Luke 10:20; Heb. 12:23). Luther observes, that, in the 9th, 10th, and 11th chapters of the Epistle to the Romans, the apostle particularly insists on the Doctrine of Predestination. “Because,” says he, “All things, whatever, arise from, and depend upon, the divine appointment; whereby it was pre-ordained, who should receive the word of life, and who should disbelieve it; who should be delivered from their sins, and who should be hardened in them; who should be justified,a d who condemned.” (Pref. to Rom.)

The decrees of election and reprobation are immutable and irreversible.

Jerome Zanchius – Absolute Predestination

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