It is his will that all come to repentance and to say it is Gods [sic] will that some not repent would make one a liar and a denier of Gods word.
A few weeks ago, I wrote about a Facebook conversation (from which I was blocked) regarding the Doctrines of Grace. The above is a quote from that conversation. From what I can tell, “denier” is not a word, but again, I’m quoting someone. They were saying that I am in denial of a truth from God’s Word, to be specific, the passage from 2 Peter 3:9, which says:
The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.
This gentleman was saying that I am denying the truth expressed in this passage, that God wants all to come to repentance. He pointed out that not everyone will come, but it is because they have rejected Christ, not because they were not drawn of the Holy Spirit.
This passage was the first one I tossed at my husband when he announced he was a heretic. It didn’t take him long to show me something that I had either ignored, or never even seen, before.
First, you must resist the urge to pull this verse out of its proper place in scripture. If you’ll notice the entire chapter, you will see that Peter is referring to two groups of people: the “us-wards” (believers) and the “scoffers” (2 Peter 3:3). The believers of Peter’s day were being ridiculed for saying that Christ would one day come again. “Where is He?” they all wondered (2 Peter 3:4). Peter was saying, “Don’t worry, God hasn’t forgotten us, He is not coming again until everyone who should be saved is saved.” How do I know this? Look at the word “us-ward”. Peter is including himself in this group, and we know Peter was saved.
Next, notice the time this book was written. According to Scofield, it was approximately A.D. 66. Obviously, you and I and other believers since that day had not been born. Had Christ returned in Peter’s day, those of us alive today would never have been able to enjoy Heaven because we would never have existed. But God knew we were the elect, or in other words, He knew we would accept Christ as Savior, and therefore, He will not return until the last of His children is safely in the fold.
One person told me that this passage was written to the whole world, but we can see in 1 Peter 1:1-2, it was written to the “…strangers scattered throughout Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia, Elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father…” That’s not the whole world, folks, that’s the “elect” or believers-to-come.
We can see that Peter is referring to the second coming of Christ by reading verse 10, “But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat…”
Will all be saved? No, certainly not. Is it their fault? Yes, it is. We are all sinners, no one is deserving of Heaven. Is God drawing all men? No. If He were, then all men would be saved, for who can resist God’s will? (Romans 9:19) Who then can be saved? The answer is in Matthew 11:27
All things are delivered unto me of my Father: and no man knoweth the Son, but the Father; neither knoweth any man the Father, save the Son, and he to whomsoever the Son will reveal him. (Luke 10:22 says the same thing.)
You mean it’s not man’s choice whether to accept or reject Christ?
John 1:12-13 clearly says salvation is not of the will of the flesh or of man:
But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name: Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.
Salvation is by Christ and Christ alone, not Christ plus my choice.
Valerie, how can I be saved? Is it hopeless?
Here is the way to salvation: Ask God to show you yourself. When you’re about to go crazy from self-loathing, pray and ask Him to show you Himself. Then you will know salvation. Then you will know grace.
I am not denying God’s Word, but I am boldly denying man’s ability to save himself, or even have a helping hand in his own salvation.