Friday, July 26, 2013

God is Never Obligated to Redeem

However contrary it is our our Western cultural commitment to egalitarianism, to insist on a universal application of grace is to violate the character of grace. God’s redemptive grace is a gift, a completely unearned divine favor given out of love.

The giver is always sovereign in the giving of a gift. That is to say, the giver is free to give and free not to give, and he gives the gift to whomever he chooses. The words obligation and gift mutually exclude one another. The common rejection of the doctrine of election in favor of a universally dispensed grace not only denies God the divine prerogative to chose whom he will redemptively love but also makes God’s grace a necessary structure of the world. If grace is an obligation, a structure or an entitlement, it is no longer a gift, and no longer grace.

Redemptive grace is always unexpected, beyond the norm, and out of the ordinary. Grace can never be taken for granted, assumed, or presumed upon. God is never obligated to redeem.
— Michael D. Williams, Far as the Curse is Found, 105

1 comment:

J. Gary Ellison said...

Bosh! Of course, God is never obligated. Such a logical construction is imposed on the gospel and can never stand in the presence of the God who is "NOT WANTING ANYONE to perish, but [WANTING] EVERYONE to come to repentance"(2 Peter 3:9 NIV). Salvation is all mercy and grace extended to "ALL WHO WISH take the free gift of the water of life" (Rev 22:17 TNIV). Is the argument that man is totally depraved and cannot wish for such? And is it further argued that God's grace is irresistible? You may as well strike these verses and others from your Bible because hyper Calvinism makes them superfluous and meaningless.

Why should it be thought impossible for God to grant man the ability to repent or not just as He gave Adam the ability to obey or disobey? Even Jonah knew that God would spare the Ninevites if they repented because God is a "gracious and compassionate God, slow to anger and abounding in love, a God who relents from sending calamity" (Jon 4:2 TNIV). Please, this Calvinistic caricature of God dishonors Him.