Calvinists deny the validity of conditional election on these grounds: (1) Because of the Calvinist’s acceptance of their doctrine of Total Spiritual Inability, they say man is incapable of the faith needed for God to use it as satisfying His conditional for election to salvation. (2) Saving faith, faith satisfying God’s supposed conditional, is a gift God gives to the previously chosen person. (3) Faith is a work and therefore cannot be a conditional for a salvation not of works. But let’s see if there is any merit whatsoever in any of these so-called problems with conditional election. Total Spiritual Inability is demonstrated to be false doctrine by Matthew 13:20-22, where unregenerate men, in their natural fallen state, receive the gospel with joy. This demonstrates they have some spiritual ability, and therefore the doctrine of total spiritual inability is unbiblical. Further, what level of faith is required? Only a faith that God accepts and credits as righteousness, it need not have any merit of or by itself. Paul teaches that our faith in Christ provides our access to the grace in which we stand, Romans 5:2, clearly supporting that we are saved by grace through faith, and not of works. Ephesians 2:8-9 does not say nor suggest that faith is a gift; the idea is that salvation is the gift. “For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of ourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, so that no one may boast.”. The pronoun “that” is not in the same gender as faith, so according to Greek grammar, “that” does not point to faith or grace, but to the resultant salvation. And while it is true that placing ones faith in Christ is a “work” it is not “works” whereby salvation is earned by doing works over time. Jesus makes this distinction between works and the work of believing in Christ, in John 6:29. The meaning of the phrase, “work of God” is not something God does, but rather something God requires, because Jesus is answering the question, what “work” shall we do. Bottom line, the so-called problems are based on misunderstanding selected verses, rather than anything of merit. Now the Arminians assert that God’s election unto salvation occurred before the foundation of the world, based on Ephesians 1:4, with God foreseeing individuals who would trust in Christ. But this puts election (whether Calvinist’s unconditional view, or the Arminian conditional election view) before anyone has lived without mercy. And since 1 Peter 2:9-10 puts our election after we live without mercy, our individual election must occur during our physical lives. And this is precisely what James 2:5 says, God chooses the poor of the world, rich in faith, and heirs to the kingdom which He promised to those who love Him. Consider 2 Thessalonians 2:13, which says, we are chosen for salvation through…faith in the truth. The phrase “for salvation” describes the purpose of the choice, and the phrases “through sanctification by the Spirit and faith in the truth” describes “how” we were chosen so it is an adverbial clause modifying the verb chose and not the noun “salvation.” Matthew 13:20-22 provides insight into this faith or trust in Christ; the conviction must be firm, heart-felt, and not rootless such that it is abandoned when difficulties arise. And the faith and devotion to Christ cannot be “half-hearted” with other worldly treasures, either possessions or relationships, sharing a place in our heart’s devotion. We are to love God and our Lord Jesus with all our heart, all our mind and all our understanding. Or as a modern phrase from Texas Hold-em would say, we must go “all in” with all our chips for Christ.