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Most of the articles on these WebPages have been written by godly men with a central belief in the Lord Jesus Christ. However as with most of us, they may have different beliefs concerning some particular doctrines. These articles have been made available for the purpose of “gleaning the good” where good can be found. I do not necessarily endorse all that is written by others, anymore than I expect others to endorse all that I write.


by John R. Daily

  Those who do not belileve that God elected His people in eternity say that if He did so, He must have reprobated all others, and that this act of reprobation must have been as much a sovereign act of decretive will of God as the act of election was. This objection to the doctrine of personal, eternal and unconditional election urged against it by Arminians, gives it a vey uncomely dress. When God elected His people, His act of choosing them became the first great cause of their salvation, and if that act had reprobated all others, then the same act that results in the salvation of His people results in the condemnation of the lost, and God is as much the cause of one as the other.

     This is a gross misrepresentation of the doctrine of election which evidently results from a misunderstanding of the meaning of terms.  Non-election, and not reprobation, is the opposite of election. Election is the act of God. Non-election is simply no act at all. When God elected His people, which the Bible teaches He did before the foundation of the world, He did nothing whatever to those He did not elect. God did not choose them, neither did He reprobate them. To pass them by and not choose them is doing nothing to them at all.

     It is argued that God is unjust if He chose some and did not choose all. If that be true, then either He did not choose any or He chose all, for He is not unjust. If He did not choose any, there was no election, for election is choice; and if He chose all, there was no election, for election is choice; and if He chose all, there was no election, for election is choice of a part. But the Bible says He did choose some "before the foundation of the world, that they should be holy and without blame before Him in love, having predestinated them unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ unto Himself according to the good pleasure of His will." This is sometimes explained as referring to the apostles only. But if it would be unjust for God to choose all that will be finally saved and to leave out all others, it would be equally unjust for Him to choose the apostles and leave all others to the uncertainty of chance, or pass them by without choosing them. But that He did choose some to eternal salvation is proved by every passage that contains the words, "election", "elect", etc., and by many circumstances recorded in the word of God.

     We deny the charge as unjust made by the Arminians against the wise and good Ruler of the universe. God did elect His people before the foundation of the world, long before any of them had a being, and those not elected were left out, and God is not unjust. It is blasphemy to charge a God of purity and justice with being unjust. It is a wonder that He allows His depraved creatures to live who utter such vile epithets in denouncing Him while they pretend to worship Him.

     While God did not choose the non-elect, He did not reprobate them.  Reprobation is the opposite of approbation and not election, and may relate to the state of a person, the frame of his mind, or the nature of his conduct. To approbate is to approve or express approval of. To reprobate is to disapprove or express disapproval of. Election is an act performed in eternity, and is not based upon any merit seen in the persons chosen.  Approbation and reprobation belong only to time and are based upon the state and conduct of the persons approved or disapproved. Whatever is right in state or conduct is approved or approbated, and whatever is wrong in state or conduct is reprobated or disapproved. All are reprobate, therefore, in a state of nature, both the elect and non-elect.

     In 2 Corinthians 13:5, Paul says, "Know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be reprobates?' This teaches that they are reprobates who have not Christ in them. The elect have not Christ in them before they are regenerated. They are then the children of wrath even as others. Being not approved, they are then reprobates, but when Christ is in them, the hope of glory, they are no longer reprobates, for they are then approved in the imputed righteousness of Christ.

     The approval of the children of God is through Christ who is in them.  They are approved because He is in them. The flesh lusts against the Spirit and the Spirit against the flesh, so that the child of God cannot do the things he would. When he does the things that he would, it is explained not to be he that does it, but sin that dwelleth in him. This sin, being not approved of God, is reprobated.

     When the Lord's people are disobedient and rebellious, they are declared to be as "reprobate silver". (See Jeremiah 6:30.) The Lord visits their transgressions with the rod, and their iniquities with many stripes.  He takes away the joys of His salvation, and refuses to fight their battles for them. This, with them, is a state of reprobation. Sad and dark are the hours of such a trial. There is a fearful looking for of fiery indignation. The peace they once enjoyed is displaced by sorrow. The sweet light of the dear Savior's presence is withdrawn, and darkness hangs over their pathway.
They cry,

                       "Where is the blessedness I knew,
                          When first I saw the Lord?
                        Where is the soul-refreshing view
                          Of Jesus and His word?"

     The non-election of the non-elect is not reprobation. As they are born into the world, and manifest by a course of sinful conduct, the sinful nature they possess, God disapproves of them or reprobates them. They are reprobates from the origin of their sinfulness, and continue reprobates because of their sinfulness. All the blame of reprobation rests upon the reprobates. Sin lies at the door in every case. None can truthfully charge God with being accountable in any sense for their reprobation. All the elect may truthfully ascribe all the glory of their election to God. If that act of election had reprobated others, then their reprobation would have been as much the result of God's purpose and act as election, but it did not reprobate any. We believe God, according to His own sovereign, eternal, and unchangeable purpose, in eternity, ere time began, did make choice of His own elect, and that all thus chosen will dwell with Him in glory and chant the praises of Him who saved them and called them with an holy calling, not according to their own works, but according to His own purpose and grace which He gave them in Christ before the world began. But we know that God is not chargeable with being responsible for the reprobation or the guilt of any.

      In a debate we held several years ago with an Arminian preacher, he asked this question: "If the sinner is lost, whose fault is it?" We answered: "It is the sinner's fault." We then showed that all the blame of sinfulness rests upon the sinner, and that all the praise of salvation is due to Jesus Christ. The Arminian idea of blame seems to be that the sinner who is finally lost is to blame merely for not having believed on Christ.  They say that the sinner cannot believe on Christ unless Christ is preached to him. Surely, then, those who never hear Christ preached are not to blame  for not believing on Him. They cannot be to blame for not believing on Christ, who have had no opportunity to believe on Him. There is no escaping the conclusion that all who die without hearing the gospel preached are lost without blame. This theory represents more than two-thirds of the human family as being lost without blame! The great difficulty is that the Arminian doctrine puts the blame on the sinner upon the wrong basis. The coming of Christ and the proclamation of His gospel is not the cause of the condemnation of sinners in any sense. If Christ had never come into the world all would have been sinners just the same. All being sinners, the sentence of death would hve passed upon all even if there never had been a gospel sermon preached. The reprobation of those who are finally lost, then is not the result, either directly or indirectly, of the election of God's people, the coming of Christ to redeem them from all iniquity, or the preaching of His gospel.