R.C. Sproul Explains the Important Doctrine of Election in “Chosen by God”
“The doctrine of election isn’t fair.” “Doesn’t God give us free will?” “What about John 3:16?” “Why would God save some and not all?” These are just some of the questions and arguments that surround the doctrine of election. But what does the Bible say about election? In his book and teaching series, Chosen by God, Dr. Sproul carefully explains the meaning of God’s sovereignty in the work of redemption and shows how it relates to the will of man. He shows why all serious Christians cannot afford to ignore this important biblical doctrine, but instead should embrace God’s initiative in Salvation.
“I once heard the president of a Presbyterian seminary declare, ‘I am not a Calvinist because I do not believe that God brings some people, kicking and screaming against their wills, into the kingdom, while he excludes others from his kingdom who desperately want to be there.’
I was astonished when I heard these words. I did not think it possible that the president of a Presbyterian seminary could have such a gross misconception of his own church’s theology. He was reciting a caricature which was as far away from Calvinism as one could get.
Calvinism does not teach and never has taught that God bring people kicking and screaming into the kingdom or has ever excluded anyone who wanted to be there. Remember that the cardinal point of the Reformed doctrine of predestination rests on the biblical teaching of man’s spiritual death. Natural man does not want Christ. He will only want Christ if God plants a desire for Christ in his heart. Once that desire is planted, those who come to Christ do not come kicking and screaming against their wills. They come because they want to come. They now desire Jesus. They rush to the Saviour. The whole point of irresistible grace is that rebirth quickens someone to spiritual life in such a way that Jesus is now seen n his irresistible sweetness. Jesus is irresistible to those who have been made alive to the things of God. Every soul whose heart beats with the life of God within it longs for the living Christ. All whom the Father gives to Christ come to Christ (John 6:37).”
Many people cite Chosen By God not only as their introduction to Dr. Sproul’s teaching, but also as the resource that profoundly shifted their attention to an understanding of the predestining grace of God:
Thank you Dr. Sproul for such a well written, well put together book on the doctrine of election. Never has a book so stated what I believe about election as well as Chosen by God. I am making my Sunday School class read this book and discuss what they think about it. —Dustin
It was a significant event in my life, to say the least. I read it when my pastor gave it to me to explain predestination (which I was fighting against) and I only read it so I could prove him wrong. I didn’t just read it, I studied my way through it, and guess what? I discovered he was right! It all hinged on the fact that God is soverign. It’s an amazing book and I’ll always be thankful for him giving it to me! —Pat
I finished reading this book in less than one week. It treats the tough topic — predestination —in such an intriguing, enlightening and biblical way that I just could not wait to see what the author would bring up in the next step. The summary at the end of each chapter is helpful to aid the readers to keep track. —Jimmy
After being a vehement anti-predestination Christian for years, I finally submitted to the truth that I see now is so clearly and consistently taught in the Bible. I have bought several copies of this book and given it to others also struggling with this issue, and time and again they have come back with sentiments that I share—this book carefully and sensitively exposes what the Bible says about God’s sovereignty, and refutes all the arguments against predestination with both sound logic/reason AND Scriptural emphasis. Concise, coherent, and a beautiful read! —Kenneth
Absolutely the best resource to explain how God brings a human soul to Christ. After viewing the DVD or reading the book (which I also give out like tracts) most people remark: “Wow - why hasn’t my church taught me this?” I have watched it probably twenty times myself and never get tired of it. I donated the book to my church library and loaned the DVD to my Sunday school class library. —Bruce