Predestination?


#1

On another site I read a Catholic poster telling another Catholic poster that the Churches stance on predestination is essentially dogma, and those who will be saved will only be saved simply because God loves them more than those going to hell. Through essentially nothing the person does. Some people are the sons and daughters in law school, and others are sons flipping burgers embarassing God.

Does the Catholic Church really believe that God simply loves some people more from before they were even created? Why would God create beings He knows He will not dispense grace too and damn them to hell because He simply doesn’t like them?

Here’s a quote from the guy:

“Before I give you the quote though, here is the general principle that proves predestination to be true from a Catholic viewpoint. All goodness flows from God. Therefore, one thing or one person would not be better than another thing or another person unless God loved that thing more. Mary is greater than all other creatures because God loves her more than other creatures. The Saints are better than those in hell because God loved them more. God loves first and chooses first… we become good and “lovable” only after God has loved us.”

If this is the case we as humans have zero free will, zero chance of change, zero chance of controlling our destiny. How could God send us to hell when we were incapable of being good because He chose not to love us?

It makes not a lick of sense to me.


#2

“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing on high in Christ. Even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blemish in his sight in love. He predestined us to be adopted through Jesus Christ as his sons, according to the purpose of his will, unto the praise and glory of his grace, with which he has favored us in his beloved son.” St. Paul’s Hymn of Praise

Read the entire thing if you like - Ephesians 1:3-14


#3

Hi Tomster! You’re a Thomist, right?

God Bless,
Michael


#4

I think this article is helpful:

bringyou.to/apologetics/a83.htm


#5

Actually, I’m a mutt! :rotfl: :rotfl: :rotfl: :rotfl: Eight years of pre-Vatican II Dominicans, fours years of Franciscans and then four years of Jesuits. I’m still in recovery - just kidding!

Happy New Year & God bless you too,

Tomster


#6

Great so we as Catholics are now down to quoting one verse in the Bible and making Dogma out of its liberal interpretation. Fantastic I wasn’t aware we were there yet…


#7

I suggested it to you as a starting point, that’s all. FCEGM has given you some good material.


#8

What an awful theology…

God simply chooses some people for no good reason and gives them “tons of Grace” to the point where they can’t help but be saved. And others well screw em…

That is an absolutely awful doctrine, call me a heretic then because I think it’s complete rubbish.


#9

Give us your spin, then.


#10

God loves all men equal, all men are given the same amount of Grace and love to be saved.

John 3:16:

“For God so loved the world that he gave His only Son, so that everyone who believes in him might not perish but might have eternal life.”

I don’t think God prefers some people over others like a bad father might prefer his star athlete son over his less talented overweight son.

I think God has a foreknowledge of who will be saved and who will be damned because He is God. But I do not think He simply decides who is going to be saved before He even created them. He may have known but He doesn’t flood them with overwhelming Grace to the point where they have to be saved, while withholding Grace from others because well he doesn’t like them or theyre annoying. That eliminates free will, and simply isn’t fair to all of His creations and makes God seem rather cruel and shallow.


#11

Grace and Peace lukewarm,

I would contend that your assumption that the state of “saved” is the beginning and end of the role of grace in the lives of the Saints is what is blinding you to a deeper and I dare say richer understanding of our Faith.

Most Protestants and many Catholics, unfortunately, appear to confuse and conflate our whole Faith in and around that of Justification. Of course, Justification is a very important facet of our Faith Journey but it is not the ‘beginning’ or the ‘end’ of our participation in the Divine Nature by any stretch of the imagination.

John 3:16:

“For God so loved the world that he gave His only Son, so that everyone who believes in him might not perish but might have eternal life.”

I don’t think God prefers some people over others like a bad father might prefer his star athlete son over his less talented overweight son.

I believe your comparison here is in error. God doesn’t condemn due to personal qualities outside the control of His Creatures. He surely doesn’t favor one of His Creatures over another based on physical attributes but it is clear that Sacred Scripture does strongly suggest that He favors those who, in the fear of the Lord, gather about them wisdom and walk humbly in His Ways. Read the Second Chapter of Ecclesiasticus, particularly verses 1 through 23.

The wicked God does despise but the righteous does God exalt.

I think God has a foreknowledge of who will be saved and who will be damned because He is God. But I do not think He simply decides who is going to be saved before He even created them. He may have known but He doesn’t flood them with overwhelming Grace to the point where they have to be saved, while withholding Grace from others because well he doesn’t like them or theyre annoying. That eliminates free will, and simply isn’t fair to all of His creations and makes God seem rather cruel and shallow.

Did John the Baptist have the freedom to ‘not’ be a Prophet when the angels told his father he would be great in the eyes of God? I would be careful with your assumptions here.


#12

Lukewarm, what is your take on the following verses:

**10And not only this, but there was Rebekah also, when she had conceived twins by one man, our father Isaac;
11for though the twins were not yet born and had not done anything good or bad, so that God’s purpose according to His choice would stand, not because of works but because of Him who calls,
12it was said to her, "THE OLDER WILL SERVE THE YOUNGER."
13Just as it is written, "JACOB I LOVED, BUT ESAU I HATED."
14What shall we say then? There is no injustice with God, is there? May it never be!
15For He says to Moses, "I WILL HAVE MERCY ON WHOM I HAVE MERCY, AND I WILL HAVE COMPASSION ON WHOM I HAVE COMPASSION."
16So then it does not depend on the man who wills or the man who runs, but on God who has mercy.
17For the Scripture says to Pharaoh, "FOR THIS VERY PURPOSE I RAISED YOU UP, TO DEMONSTRATE MY POWER IN YOU, AND THAT MY NAME MIGHT BE PROCLAIMED THROUGHOUT THE WHOLE EARTH."
18So then He has mercy on whom He desires, and He hardens whom He desires.
19You will say to me then, "Why does He still find fault? For (who resists His will?"
20On the contrary, who are you, O man, who answers back to God? The thing molded will not say to the molder, “Why did you make me like this,” will it?
21Or does not the potter have a right over the clay, to make from the same lump one vessel for honorable use and another for common use?
22What if God, although willing to demonstrate His wrath and to make His power known, endured with much patience vessels of wrath prepared for destruction?
23And He did so to make known the riches of His glory upon vessels of mercy, which He prepared beforehand for glory, **

God Bless,
Michael


#13

I think it’s incredibly dangerous to begin focusing on one passage of scripture and formulating entire doctrines around them while ignoring hundreds of others in the Bible.

The day I become a Sola Scriptura Christian and happen to trust my personal interpretation of those passages, and I choose to take those word for word over others throughout the Bible whre God clearly wills for ALL men to be saved, God loves ALL men, God knocks on everyones door and it’s up to them to listen etc… is when I’ll believe in predestination.


#14

Of course he did…


#15

From our own, personal, standpoint it’s almost a moot point because we have no way of knowing who will or who won’t gain eternal life. We have only the grace of God to depend on coupled with the promise that he who perseveres to the end will win the race. The last part is where our freedom comes into play.


#16

So you believe that God can error in His predictions? We cannot establish Freewill at the expense of God’s Omniscience just as we cannot establish God’s Omniscience at the expense of Freewill. On the first one errors into Palegianism and on the later one errors into Calvinism.

St. Maximos the Confessor once stated that God gives the grace to move the willing heart.

We must understand such as a synergism (i.e. participation) but not at the expense of God’s overall Providence to work out Salvation for us. What we see in the angel speaking of the future of John the Baptist was what was going to be chosen to be done by John of his own will in participation with that of God’s Will for Him and in His role in God’s Providence. Try and see the big picture. God’s Omniscience isn’t confused by our Freewill. He is never surprised.


#17

What a bunch of nonsense, I outwardly reject any idea that God simply likes some people and dislikes others from before their creation. How stupid and hopeless for people… It removes all free will and simply puts your salvation in a lottery of were you favored by God or not? Ohh you weren’t God has disliked you from the beginning to time have fun burning in hell for eternity.

The more I delve into the teachings of this Church the more I wonder why I am a part of it.

Could God do it? Of course… Does He? I highly doubt it, all men are loved by God equally, all men recieve Grace for salvation. it is up to men to freely accept it or reject it.

Foreknowledge doesn’t mean God directed.


#18

There is more than one passage in the Bible regarding predestination and we also have the works of Saint Augustine and Saint Thomas Aquinas.

God Bless,
Michael


#19

It’s all about how its interpreted. There are plenty of passages in the Bible that lend towards man’s free will to freely accept the gift given equally to all men. And St. Augustine said unbaptized babies go to hell you’ll excuse me if I don’t accept his writings or teachings as Gospel. None of his writings are binding on the Church or the faithful.


#20

If that’s what you got from the article, then the problem isn’t with the doctrine but with your ability to understand it. :shrug:


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