Does God love everyone or does He only love even the ones He predestined for Salvation? I am struggling with Calvin's doctrine of predestination. If God does not love everyone, what of the statements regarding His love for the “world” and reconciling the “world ” to Himself? If He loves the world, and surely Scripture teaches that he does, is there reason in supposing that “vessels made for destruction” are outside of that love? If He loves those vessels made for destruction, how is destruction reconcilable with His agape love and fatherhood? Scholarly Christian illumination sought.
Calvin teaches a double predestination in an endeavor to answer the question why some are saved and not others. He reasons that if God in his revealed will predestines some to salvation, it therefore follows that in his hidden will, he predestines the rest of humankind to damnation.
For many Christians the question "Am I saved?" is much more important than the question "Why are some saved and not others?" They believe when reading John 3:16, that if God so loved the world.... he also loved me, and if I believe in his only begotten Son, I shall inherit everlasting life.
Calvin's doctrine of predestination creates a conflict between the hidden will of God and the will of God as it is revealed to us in the Bible. The Apostle Paul rejects that it is possible for any such conflict to exist when he declares in 2 Timothy 2:12 "....he abideth faithful: he cannot deny himself."
We read nothing of a predestination to damnation in the Bible. The Bible only reveals a predestination to salvation (Romans 8:28-30).
How could we possibly trust a God who in his hidden will (as Calvin teaches) predestines to damnation and in his revealed will emphasizes, in the words of the Apostle Peter, "The Lord is....not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance?"
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