According to the eternal purpose which he purposed in Christ Jesus our Lord (Eph. 3:11) I first wish to thank Pastor DHK for allowing the previous thread to reach 31 pages. This thread is dealing specifically with God’s eternal purpose in Christ. All God’s purposes originate in eternity before creation took place. This is a difficult concept for many because many seek reasons for God’s purposes. The reasons are according to the counsel of His own will. (Eph. 1:11) Nothing or no one influenced His counsel because nothing and no one existed before God brought it or him into existence. the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! how unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past finding out! 34 For who hath known the mind of the Lord? or who hath been his counselor? 35 Or who hath first given to him, and it shall be recompensed unto him again? (Romans 11:35) Please note verse 35. Our Pelagian/Arminian friends would have themselves be the ones who gave God their faith in Christ, thereby deserving eternal life. But Scripture, once again, dismisses such arrogance declaring it was God who gave them faith. Synonyms for ‘Purpose’ When we speak of one’s ‘purpose’ we speak of one’s intention, one’s goal, one’s end, one’s objective, one’s mission, that which one specifically wills to achieve. So we ask: Was it God’s eternal purpose, intention, goal, objective, mission to save every person ever born? If you answer ‘Yes’ then He has failed miserably in achieving His goal. But God cannot fail at anything. If He did, He would be no God. My counsel shall stand, and I will do all my pleasure.(Isaiah 46:10) God is not man, that he should lie, or a son of man, that he should change his mind. Has he said, and will he not do it? Or has he spoken, and will he not fulfill it? (Numbers 23:19) If you answer, ‘No,’ then God has not failed at achieving His objective because not all are saved. We must then ask: What was God’s eternal purpose in Christ? Was Christ to die for all mankind that all might be saved? If you answer ‘Yes’ then Christ has failed miserably in His mission. And what was His mission? And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins. (Matt. 1:21) There you have it in plain, easy to understand language a child could comprehend: He shall save His people from their sins. Has Jesus saved all people from their sins? No. Is He a failure on that account? No, because we are specifically told that He shall save His people – not all people – from their sins. There is a difference. A difference which our Pelagian/Arminian friends choose not to recognize. According to their misguided theology, they claim Jesus came to give His life as Savior for all people. In fact, the whole world. John 3:16 and 1 John 2:2 are their classic proof texts. Had Jesus and innumerable other Scriptures not taught the contrary, our opponents might have a leg to stand on……not two legs, but one leg. Let us listen to the words of Jesus in John 17, words of prayer spoken to the Father moments before being taken captive that He might be put to death. These words spake Jesus, and lifted up his eyes to heaven, and said, Father, the hour is come; glorify thy Son, that thy Son also may glorify thee: 2 As thou hast given him power over all flesh, that he should give eternal life to as many as thou hast given him. We discover in verse 2 there is an exchange between the Father and the Son. The Father has a specific people – specific in number and identity – who He has given to Christ. To what purpose were they given? To the end that Christ should give them eternal life. Which brings us back to John 3:16. Had it been the eternal purpose of God in Christ to give Christ to all the men in the world? No. His purpose was to give specific people to Christ and those same specific people were those to whom Christ was to give eternal life. Does eternal life include saving faith? Of course it does. By grace we are saved through faith. But does not man give saving faith in Christ to God and receive back the gift of eternal life as a just reward? No. Faith is the first and primary component of eternal life. Why would our infinitely all-wise God give Christ and every other spiritual gift necessary to eternal life and leave it up to sinful, wretched man to supply the most essential component: a holy, justifying, living faith in the Son of God? Man is dead to God, devoid of the Spirit, and cannot comprehend the things of God, for they are spiritually discerned. Christ died that the Elect would believe and have eternal life. So says John 3:16. The Elect are raised from spiritual death by the same power that raised Christ from the dead. (Eph. 1:19-20) From that same power comes faith. Did Christ die for the world? No. How do we know? Because He prayed not for the world, but only for them which the Father gave Him. (John 17:9) But is He not praying only for His disciples? No. He is praying for all who will believe on His name. (John 17:20) Are they also considered among the people given Christ by the Father. Yes. All that the Father giveth me shall come to me and the one who comes to me I will in no wise cast out. (John 6:37) CONCLUSION: Our holy God is highly dishonored by positing an eternal will and purpose to save all, yet saves few. Such a God is not the biblical God. Furthermore, our holy infinitely all-wise God is shown to be less wise than man by providing the Savior, but not providing all the necessary graces which must accompany salvation, i.e. saving faith. Especially if His will is to save all men.........which it isn't.