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    Do you believe in Predestination?

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    Do you believe in Predestination?

    Post by Theophilus on Wed Jul 28, 2010 12:53 pm

    Do you believe in Predestination?
    I personally believe it is a biblical doctrine. Let's talk about it.
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    Re: Do you believe in Predestination?

    Post by Yidda on Wed Jul 28, 2010 2:20 pm

    Theophilus wrote:Do you believe in Predestination?
    I personally believe it is a biblical doctrine. Let's talk about it.

    Clarify us first which Predestination are you referring?

    1. To Luther humans have in relation to their salvation no free will. That is, they are justified by God alone, without any action on their part.

    2. Calvin has drawn the logical conclusion that God must have predestined some to hell(those to whom he doesn't offer the justifying grace)

    Luther was horrified by this. no. 2 He maintained that humans are un-free, totally passive, when being justified, but when they are damned, it's their own fault. Luther said something like this: This is illogical, but nevertheless true.

    3. Other definitions?
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    Re: Do you believe in Predestination?

    Post by Theophilus on Wed Jul 28, 2010 2:35 pm

    Predestination, for me (as an Augustinian), includes a) God's selection of some people for eternal life (election), and b) His passing over the rest or the leaving of the non-elect in their sinfulness - deserted from the efficacious Grace of God leading to Salvation (reprobation).

    But in this Predestination, man's liberty to choose is not destroyed. As the CCC puts it:

    CCC [600] To God, all moments of time are present in their immediacy. When therefore he establishes his eternal plan of "predestination", he includes in it each person's free response to his grace: "In this city, in fact, both Herod and Pontius Pilate, with the Gentiles and the peoples of Israel, gathered together against your holy servant Jesus, whom you anointed, to do whatever your hand and your plan had predestined to take place."395 For the sake of accomplishing his plan of salvation, God permitted the acts that flowed from their blindness.

    http://www.scborromeo.org/ccc/p122a4p2.htm
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    Re: Do you believe in Predestination?

    Post by Yidda on Wed Jul 28, 2010 2:49 pm

    Theophilus wrote:Predestination, for me (as an Augustinian), includes a) God's selection of some people for eternal life (election), and b) His passing over the rest or the leaving of the non-elect in their sinfulness - deserted from the efficacious Grace of God leading to Salvation (reprobation).

    Are you saying Godjustifies everyone(those selected) initially?
    how about the non- elect?


    Last edited by Yidda on Wed Jul 28, 2010 3:02 pm; edited 1 time in total
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    Re: Do you believe in Predestination?

    Post by Procorus on Wed Jul 28, 2010 2:57 pm

    [quote="Yidda"]

    Clarify us first which Predestination are you referring?

    1. To Luther humans have in relation to their salvation no free will. That is, they are justified by God alone, without any action on their part. [/quote]

    You are totally misrepresenting the position of Luther. First, for Luther (and for other evangelicals as well) justification and predestination are not the same thing. Justification, on the one hand, is the divine act of declaring a believing sinner "not guilty" (or righteous / perfect) in His sight on the basis of Christ's cleansing blood and merits alone. Predestination on the other hand is the God's initiative in Salvation, in which He has predestined certain people for the efficacious Grace leading them to [i]willfully[/i] and [i]freely[/i] believe, and thus Justified. See, Justification requires the free response of the sinner to turn away from his Sin and believe the Gospel. However, no spiritually dead sinner is able to respond unless they are first given the divine infallible Grace, therefore the need of Predestination.

    In other words, what you have just said regarding the Lutheran perspective on Justification is but a mere misrepresentation of what they really believe.


    [quote]2. Calvin has drawn the logical conclusion that God must have predestined some to hell(those to whom he doesn't offer the justifying grace)[/quote]
    Augustine and Aquinas believed the same.

    [quote]Luther was horrified by this. no. 2 He maintained that humans are un-free, totally passive, when being justified, but when they are damned, it's their own fault. Luther said something like this: This is illogical, but nevertheless true.[/quote]
    I would be interested to see where Luther said those words. [img]http://illiweb.com/fa/i/smiles/icon_cyclops.gif[/img]
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    Re: Do you believe in Predestination?

    Post by Theophilus on Wed Jul 28, 2010 3:03 pm

    Yidda wrote:
    Are you saying God justifies everyone(those selected) initially?
    how about he non- elect?

    No. Election is NOT the initial justification or the justification itself. Election is just simply the divine initiative in Salvation AS A WHOLE, which includes the following details:

    a) Grace of Baptism
    b) Infallible Calling (infallibly leading to Faith and Repentance)
    c) Sufficient (and infallible) Grace for good works
    d) Sufficient (and infallible) Grace for Perseverance
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    Re: Do you believe in Predestination?

    Post by Yidda on Wed Jul 28, 2010 3:08 pm

    Procorus wrote:

    You are totally misrepresenting the position of Luther. First, for Luther (and for other evangelicals as well) justification and predestination are not the same thing. Justification, on the one hand, is the divine act of declaring a believing sinner "not guilty" (or righteous / perfect) in His sight on the basis of Christ's cleansing blood and merits alone. Predestination on the other hand is the God's initiative in Salvation, in which He has predestined certain people for the efficacious Grace leading them to willfully and freely believe, and thus Justified. See, Justification requires the free response of the sinner to turn away from his Sin and believe the Gospel. However, no spiritually dead sinner is able to respond unless they are first given the divine infallible Grace, therefore the need of Predestination.

    In other words, what you have just said regarding the Lutheran perspective on Justification is but a mere misrepresentation of what they really believe.



    Augustine and Aquinas believed the same.


    I would be interested to see where Luther said those words.


    Alright post in here what is predestination according to Luther.

    Augustine and Aquinas believed the same? I doubt this statement, although you would see words like "predestination" it doesnt necessary mean you have thesame interpretation like them.

    In your own words what is predestination care to clarify to us?
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    Re: Do you believe in Predestination?

    Post by Theophilus on Wed Jul 28, 2010 3:16 pm

    This set of graces leading to the fullness of Salvation is given only to the elect:

    a) Grace of Baptism
    b) Infallible Calling (infallibly leading to Faith)
    c) Sufficient (and infallible) Grace for good works unto Justification
    d) Sufficient (and infallible) Grace for Perseverance

    Some are given only the grace of baptism (a), but are not given the infallible grace for them to have faith (b), thus they are reprobates. There are some exemptions, however. Those who die in infancy, but baptized, will be admitted to heaven.

    Some are given the grace of baptism (a), the grace of infallible calling (b), the sufficient grace for good works unto Justification (c), but are not given then grace of Perseverance, thus they are also reprobates.

    There are also some that are not given any efficient/sufficient grace at all accompanying Salvation; these are the total reprobates.


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    Re: Do you believe in Predestination?

    Post by Yidda on Wed Jul 28, 2010 3:27 pm

    Theophilus wrote:This set of graces leading to the fullness of Salvation is given only to the elect:

    a) Grace of Baptism
    b) Infallible Calling (infallibly leading to Faith)
    c) Sufficient (and infallible) Grace for good works unto Justification
    d) Sufficient (and infallible) Grace for Perseverance

    Some are given only the grace of baptism (a), but are not given the infallible grace for them to have faith (b), thus they are reprobates. There are some exemptions, however. Those who die in infancy, but baptized, will be admitted to heaven.

    Some are given the grace of baptism (a), the grace of infallible calling (b), the sufficient grace for good works unto Justification (c), but are not given then grace of Perseverance, thus they are also reprobates.

    There are also some that are not given any efficient/sufficient grace at all accompanying Salvation; these are the total reprobates.




    by this Divine initiative you mean we gain Sanctfying grace or salvific grace - (justification for Protestants)? Am I right?
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    Re: Do you believe in Predestination?

    Post by Theophilus on Wed Jul 28, 2010 3:30 pm

    Yidda wrote:

    by this Divine initiative you mean we gain Sanctfying grace or salvific grace - (justification for Protestants)? Am I right?

    Not only justification, but the WHOLE DETAIL leading to the FULLNESS Salvation. It includes in it all the graces necessary to infallibly save the elected sinner. But again, it does not destroy man's freedom to choose.
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    Re: Do you believe in Predestination?

    Post by Yidda on Wed Jul 28, 2010 3:34 pm

    Theophilus wrote:

    Not only justification, but the WHOLE DETAIL leading to the FULLNESS Salvation. It includes in it all the graces necessary to infallibly save the elected sinner. But again, it does not destroy man's freedom to choose.

    but it is still selective salvation like that of calvin,for sure this not what St. Augustin believes when he say about predestination.

    as you have said:

    Some are given only the grace of baptism (a), but are not given the
    infallible grace for them to have faith (b), thus they are reprobates.
    There are some exemptions, however. Those who die in infancy, but
    baptized, will be admitted to heaven.

    Some are given the grace
    of baptism (a), the grace of infallible calling (b), the sufficient
    grace for good works unto Justification (c), but are not given then
    grace of Perseverance, thus they are also reprobates.

    There are
    also some that are not given any efficient/sufficient grace at all
    accompanying Salvation; these are the total reprobates.
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    Re: Do you believe in Predestination?

    Post by Theophilus on Wed Jul 28, 2010 3:37 pm

    Yidda wrote:
    but it is still selective salvation like that of calvin,for sure this not what St. Augustin believes when he say about predestination.

    as you have said:

    Some are given only the grace of baptism (a), but are not given the
    infallible grace for them to have faith (b), thus they are reprobates.
    There are some exemptions, however. Those who die in infancy, but
    baptized, will be admitted to heaven.

    Some are given the grace
    of baptism (a), the grace of infallible calling (b), the sufficient
    grace for good works unto Justification (c), but are not given then
    grace of Perseverance, thus they are also reprobates.

    There are
    also some that are not given any efficient/sufficient grace at all
    accompanying Salvation; these are the total reprobates.
    That's exactly what St. Augustine (and I believe, St. Thomas Aquinas, too) believed in Predestination. Do you read Augustine? I do.
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    Re: Do you believe in Predestination?

    Post by Yidda on Wed Jul 28, 2010 3:43 pm

    My stand on Predestination a view from a real Catholic.

    Aside from the above belief some say that God justifiy(having sanctfying grace) everyone initially meaning from the beginning they were chosen. I don't think that is correct. Our Blessed Virgin Mary, and Jesus in his human nature, had sanctifying grace
    from conception. Adam and Eve had sanctifying grace from their creation.


    Speaking generally about the rest of us:

    We are conceived without sanctifying grace and so are not initially justified. Then we must seek grace in our life, ordinarily through the Sacrament of Baptism and the other Sacraments. Salvation is not something that we can earn or deserve. But we participate in our own salvation by cooperating with God's grace, and that cooperation merits a reward from God in this life and the next.

    Everyone is constantly and unceasingly offered grace from God, even the worst sinners. For the worst sinners, the grace is mainly the grace to repent. For the saints the graces offered are myriad.

    Predestination is not a kind of unfair and inexplicable or arbitrary choice by God as to who will be saved. All are called to salvation, but many refuse the call. Since God knows the whole future and all our future free will decisions with absolute certainty, then the salvation of the just is known with certainty. Also, Heaven is beyond Time, so everyone who ever will get to Heaven is already there. Predestination is a function of the timelessness of Heaven and the absolute and complete knowledge of God.

    And this does in no way diminish free will. Yesterday, you made various free will decisions, and today those decisions cannot be changed becaus they are in the past. But you still had free will yesterday even though you cannot change those past decisions. Similarly, God knows what are free will decisions will be in the future, and He knows who will be saved, this is predetermined, but is in no way arbitrary, because we all have the opportunity to be saved and we all have free will.
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    Re: Do you believe in Predestination?

    Post by Yidda on Wed Jul 28, 2010 3:48 pm

    Theophilus wrote:
    That's exactly what St. Augustine (and I believe, St. Thomas Aquinas, too) believed in Predestination. Do you read Augustine? I do.

    really show to me this selective salvation: I don't think you have understood their writings.

    read:
    Some are given only the grace of baptism (a), but are not given the
    infallible grace for them to have faith (b), thus they are reprobates.
    There are some exemptions, however. Those who die in infancy, but
    baptized, will be admitted to heaven.

    Some are given the grace
    of baptism (a), the grace of infallible calling (b), the sufficient
    grace for good works unto Justification (c), but are not given then
    grace of Perseverance, thus they are also reprobates.

    There are
    also some that are not given any efficient/sufficient grace at all
    accompanying Salvation; these are the total reprobates.
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    Re: Do you believe in Predestination?

    Post by Theophilus on Wed Jul 28, 2010 3:52 pm

    Some are given only the grace of baptism (a), but are not given the infallible grace for them to have faith (b), thus they are reprobates. There are some exemptions, however. Those who die in infancy, but
    baptized, will be admitted to heaven.


    Augustine wrote:

    Faith, then, as well in its beginning as in its completion, is God's gift; and let no one have any doubt whatever, unless he desires to resist the plainest sacred writings, that this gift is given to some, while to some it is not given. But why it is not given to all ought not to disturb the believer, who believes that from one all have gone into a condemnation, which undoubtedly is most righteous; so that even if none were delivered therefrom, there would be no just cause for finding fault with God. Whence it is plain that it is a great grace for many to be delivered, and to acknowledge in those that are not delivered what would be due to themselves; so that he that glories may glory not in his own merits, which he sees to be equalled in those that are condemned, but in the Lord. But why He delivers one rather than another—"His judgments are unsearchable, and His ways past finding out." (Romans 11:33) For it is better in this case for us to hear or to say, "O man, who are you that repliest against God?" (Romans 9:20) than to dare to speak as if we could know what He has chosen to be kept secret. Since, moreover, He could not will anything unrighteous.
    ~ St. Augustine, On the Predestination of the Saints, Ch. 16


    St. Augustine said, "this gift is given to some, while to some it is NOT GIVEN". I don't see any shadow of doubt that this explicitly states selective Salvation. If you believe otherwise, then prove it to be that way. You may read the whole book from cover to cover, and you will find the idea of "selective salvation" here and there defended by my patron and mentor, the great "Doctor of Grace". After all, the topic of the book focuses on Predestination, right?


    Some are given the grace of baptism (a), the grace of infallible calling (b), the sufficient grace for good works unto Justification (c), but are not given then grace of Perseverance, thus they are also reprobates.

    But of two pious men, why to the one should be given perseverance unto the end, and to the other it should not be given, God's judgments are even more unsearchable. Yet to believers it ought to be a most certain fact that the former is of the predestinated, the latter is not. "For if they had been of us," says one of the predestinated, who had drunk this secret from the breast of the Lord, "certainly they would have continued with us." (1 John 2:19)
    ~ St. Augustine, On the Perseverance of the Saints, Ch. 21 [IX]

    Isn't this selective salvation as well? St. Augustine openly taught that God is absolutely Sovereign in Salvation, so much so that He is the ultimate determiner of who will persevere by His grace according to His gracious election. St. Augustine said: "...the one should be given perseverance unto the end, and to the other it should not be given"; then he afterwards stated: "it ought to be a most certain fact that the former is of the predestinated".
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    Re: Do you believe in Predestination?

    Post by Yidda on Wed Jul 28, 2010 4:15 pm

    Let's see if your doctrine fits with them:St Augustine and St. Thomas believed that God election is Eternal, Unconditional and Immutable.When eternal the Catholic Church with our two great Theologians Augustine and St. Thomas are teaching that God's Election is Eternal because God is Eternal, since man is not Eternal and the world is finite, salvation occurs in the finite condition of man. Unconditional - in this also include good works.Part of the grace being given God to the elect is the "Gift of Perseverance". that is the capacity to do works.

    and St. Tomas concurs:


    In Summa Theologia Ia, Q.23, Article 3 On Predestination he explains that "As long as a free creature has not attained his goal, he may perversely turn aside and fail to attain it."

    THIS IS ST. THOMAS AQUINAS' DOCTRINE OF REPROBATION: "Thus, as men are ordained to eternal life through the providence of God, it is likewise is part of that providence to PERMIT some to fall away from that end; this is called reprobation... Therefore, as predestination includes the will to permit a person to fall into sin, and to impose the punishment of damnation on account of that sin." [Summa Theologia, vol. 1, Christian Classics ed. p. 127]



    thus, if in your doctrine which is similar to calvinist: The reject of good works on the part of the believers does'nt fit the theology of St, Augustine and Of St. Thomas.

    much more

    Summa Theologiae Ia, Q. 23, Art. 8 [Christian Classics edition, p. 133]:

    "Wherefore we must say otherwise that in predestination two things are to be considered - namaly, The Divine Preordination; and its Effects. Asregards the former, in no possible way can predestination be furthered by the prayers of the saints. For it is not due to their prayers that anyone is predestined by God. As Regards the latter, predestination is sad to be HELPED BY THE PRAYERS OF THE SAINTS, and by other GOOD WORKS... whether it be one's own prayers, or those of another, or other GOOD WORKS, and such like, without which one would not attain to salvation."


    that is for rejection of good works by St. Thomas, tell me now if that doctrine of predestination is identical to yours?

    immutable

    Thus as men are ordained to eternal life through the providence of God, it is likewise is part of the providence To PERMIT some To Fall away from that end; this is called REPROBATION.

    The position of St. Augustine and St. Thomas Aquinas are in respectful of the freewill of man. God simply gives permission to fall away (to permit). But your God does not permit... Falling away instead.


    for Aquinas reprobation is attributed to man while for YOU - you attribute it to man and to the eternal Decree of God.
    That, ultimately it is God who wills the doom of his own creature.

    For Augustinianism - a God who directly wills evil for his creatures.





    Last edited by Yidda on Wed Jul 28, 2010 6:18 pm; edited 6 times in total
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    Re: Do you believe in Predestination?

    Post by Theophilus on Wed Jul 28, 2010 4:22 pm

    Yidda wrote:My stand on Predestination a view from a real Catholic.

    Aside from the above belief some say that God justifiy(having sanctfying grace) everyone initially meaning from the beginning they were chosen. I don't think that is correct. Our Blessed Virgin Mary, and Jesus in his human nature, had sanctifying grace
    from conception. Adam and Eve had sanctifying grace from their creation.
    I agree with you. That's not the Augustinian position.

    Speaking generally about the rest of us:

    We are conceived without sanctifying grace and so are not initially justified. Then we must seek grace in our life, ordinarily through the Sacrament of Baptism and the other Sacraments. Salvation is not something that we can earn or deserve. But we participate in our own salvation by cooperating with God's grace, and that cooperation merits a reward from God in this life and the next.

    Everyone is constantly and unceasingly offered grace from God, even the
    worst sinners. For the worst sinners, the grace is mainly the grace to
    repent. For the saints the graces offered are myriad.
    Again, I agree. But how can we ever cooperate if our will is marred by Sin and thus avails for nothing except to Sin unless effectually assisted by the divine grace? "No one can come to me unless the Father has enabled him" (Jn. 6:65). Therefore, we cooperate in God's grace, because an enabling grace is first given to us.

    Predestination is not a kind of unfair and inexplicable or arbitrary choice by God as to who will be saved.
    While I agree with you that it is not unfair and arbitrary, I would insist that it is inexplicable. Augustine, whenever asked why God has elected only some to salvation and not all, he always respond like this:

    But why He delivers one rather than another—"His judgments are unsearchable, and His ways past finding out." (Romans 11:33) For it is better in this case for us to hear or to say, "O man, who are you that
    repliest against God?" (Romans 9:20) than to dare to speak as if we could know what He has chosen to be kept secret. Since, moreover, He could not will anything unrighteous.
    ~ St. Augustine, On the Predestination of the Saints, Ch. 16

    It is, therefore, inexplicable. Moreover, in the last sentence of the the same passage he said: "Since, moreover, He could not will anything unrighteous" - therefore, it is also not unfair or unjust.

    All are called to salvation, but many refuse the call. Since God knows the whole future and all our future free will decisions with absolute certainty, then the salvation of the just is known with certainty. Also, Heaven is beyond Time, so everyone who ever will get to Heaven is already there. Predestination is a function of the timelessness of Heaven and the absolute and complete knowledge of God.
    Are you saying that God's Predestination (with regards to who will be saved) is founded upon God's foresight of what men would choose/do?

    Yidda wrote:And this does in no way diminish free will. Yesterday, you made various free will decisions, and today those decisions cannot be changed becaus they are in the past. But you still had free will yesterday even though you cannot change those past decisions. Similarly, God knows what are free will decisions will be in the future, and He knows who will be saved, this is predetermined, but is in no way arbitrary, because we all have the opportunity to be saved and we all have free will.
    I agree with you that we have "free will", but for me - as an Augustinian - our every will, whether good or bad, is entirely at the disposal of God. In other words, while I don't deny "free will", I believe God is has absolute Sovereignty over mens' free will.


    Last edited by Theophilus on Wed Jul 28, 2010 4:32 pm; edited 1 time in total
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    Re: Do you believe in Predestination?

    Post by Theophilus on Wed Jul 28, 2010 4:30 pm

    Yidda wrote:
    Let me post the whole chapter so we won't quote the message out of of context.

    Chapter 21.--Instances of the
    Unsearchable Judgments of God.




    Therefore, of two infants, equally bound
    by original sin, why the one is taken and the other left; and of two wicked
    men of already mature years, why this one should be so called as to follow
    Him that calleth, while that one is either not called at all, or is not
    called in such a manner,--the judgments of God are unsearchable. But of two
    pious men, why to the one should be given perseverance unto the end, and to
    the other it should not be given, God’s judgments are even more unsearchable.
    Yet to believers it ought to be a most certain fact that the former is of the
    predestinated, the latter is not. “For if they had been of us,” says one of
    the predestinated, who had drunk this secret from the breast of the Lord,
    “certainly they would have continued with us.” [1 John ii. 19] What, I ask,
    is the meaning of, “They were not of us; for if they had been of us, they
    would certainly have continued with us”? Were not both created by God--both
    born of Adam--both made from the earth, and given from Him who said, “I have
    created all breath,” [Isa. lvii. 16 (see LXX)] souls of one and the same
    nature? Lastly, had not both been called, and followed Him that called them?
    and had not both become, from wicked men, justified men, and both been
    renewed by the laver of regeneration? But if he were to hear this who beyond
    all doubt knew what he was saying, he might answer and say: These things are
    true. In respect of all these things, they were of us. Nevertheless, in
    respect of a certain other distinction, they were not of us, for if they had
    been of us, they certainly would have continued with us. What then is this
    distinction? God’s books lie open, let us not turn away our view; the divine
    Scripture cries aloud, let us give it a hearing. They were not of them,
    because they had not been “called according to the purpose;” they had not
    been chosen in Christ before the foundation of the world; they had not gained
    a lot in Him; they had not been predestinated according to His purpose who
    worketh all things. For if they had been this, they would have been of them,
    and without doubt they would have continued with them.

    Has anything changed? No.

    In fact, it only adds weight to my assertion. In that particular passage, St. Augustine demonstrated some "inexplicable" judgments of God, which includes God's giving of His efficient grace of perseverance to some, and not to others. How could that be? Because His purpose (predestination) "worketh all things". That was St. Augustine's conclusion.

    I don't see any indication that I have quoted him out of context. I told you already, I read him. And it's a great probability that you don't, and you never had.
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    Re: Do you believe in Predestination?

    Post by Theophilus on Wed Jul 28, 2010 4:53 pm

    More on the "exclusivity" and "inscrutability" of God's efficient grace unto Salvation:

    Here, if I am asked why God should not have given them perseverance to whom He gave that love by which they might live Christianly, I answer that I do not know. For I do not speak arrogantly, but with acknowledgment of my small measure, when I hear the apostle saying, "O man, who are you that repliest against God?" (Romans 9:20) and, "O the depth of the riches of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are His judgments, and His ways untraceable!" (Romans 11:33) So far, therefore, as He condescends to manifest His judgments to us, let us give thanks; but so far as He thinks fit to conceal them, let us not murmur against His counsel, but believe that this also is the most wholesome for us. But whoever you are that are hostile to His grace, and thus ask, what do you yourself say? It is well that you do not deny yourself to be a Christian and boast of being a catholic. If, therefore, you confess that to persevere to the end in good is God's gift, I think that equally with me you are ignorant why one man should receive this gift and ANOTHER SHOULD NOT RECEIVE it; and in this case we are both unable to penetrate the unsearchable judgments of God. Or if you say that it pertains to man's free will— which you defend, not in accordance with God's grace, but in opposition to it— that any one should persevere in good, or should not persevere, and it is not by the gift of God if he persevere, but by the performance of human will, why will you strive against the words of Him who says, "I have prayed for you, Peter, that your faith fail not"? (Luke 22:32) Will you dare to say that even when Christ prayed that Peter's faith might not fail, it would still have failed if Peter had willed it to fail; that is, if he had been unwilling that it should continue even to the end? As if Peter could in any measure will otherwise than Christ had asked for him that he might will. For who does not know that Peter's faith would then have perished if that will by which he was faithful should fail, and that it would have continued if that same will should abide? But because "the will is prepared by the Lord," (Proverbs 8:35) therefore Christ's petition on his behalf could not be a vain petition. When, then, He prayed that his faith should not fail, what was it that he asked for, but that in his faith he should have a most free, strong, invincible, persevering will! Behold to what an extent the freedom of the will is defended in accordance with the grace of God, not in opposition to it; because the human will does not attain grace by freedom, but rather attains freedom by grace, and a delightful constancy, and an insuperable fortitude that it may persevere.
    ~ St. Augustine, On Rebuke and Grace, Ch. 17 [VIII]
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    Re: Do you believe in Predestination?

    Post by Yidda on Wed Jul 28, 2010 6:16 pm

    read my post above.

    one thing more. are the unborn souls already sinners?
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    Re: Do you believe in Predestination?

    Post by Theophilus on Wed Jul 28, 2010 7:27 pm

    Yes, they are - because of Original Sin.

    However it is my personal conviction that they would go to Limbo if they die. I also consider the possibility of God graciously regenerating them so as to cleanse them from the stains of original sin prior to their death.
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    Re: Do you believe in Predestination?

    Post by Theophilus on Wed Jul 28, 2010 8:04 pm

    Yidda wrote:Let's see if your doctrine fits with them:
    I am very confident that it is. I read them, you don't. You simply have no idea what your insisting.

    St Augustine and St. Thomas believed that God election is Eternal, Unconditional and Immutable.
    Exactly what I, as a fundamental Augustinian, believe!

    When eternal the Catholic Church with our two great Theologians Augustine and St. Thomas are teaching that God's Election is Eternal because God is Eternal, since man is not Eternal and the world is finite, salvation occurs in the finite condition of man.
    God's Election is eternal, meaning it has been decreed even before the world began, from eternity past.

    Unconditional - in this also include good works.Part of the grace being given God to the elect is the "Gift of Perseverance". that is the capacity to do works.
    You mean to say the basis of God's election is men's future good works and perseverance in holiness?

    and St. Tomas concurs:


    In Summa Theologia Ia, Q.23, Article 3 On Predestination he explains that "As long as a free creature has not attained his goal, he may perversely turn aside and fail to attain it."
    Exactly my position.

    THIS IS ST. THOMAS AQUINAS' DOCTRINE OF REPROBATION: "Thus, as men are ordained to eternal life through the providence of God, it is likewise is part of that providence to PERMIT some to fall away from that end; this is called reprobation... Therefore, as predestination includes the will to permit a person to fall into sin, and to impose the punishment of damnation on account of that sin." [Summa Theologia, vol. 1, Christian Classics ed. p. 127]

    This is what I was talking about a while ago; that God gives to some the Grace of Perseverance, while to others it is not given (and in this sense they are permitted to fall away, because left in their own free will - deserted by grace - the natural inclination of their will is to fall away). St. Thomas wrote:

    • Reply to Objection 1: God loves all men and all creatures, inasmuch as He wishes them all some good; but He does not wish every good to them all. So far, therefore, as He does not wish this particular good---namely, eternal life---He is said to hate or reprobated them.
    Hmmm... sounds like "selective Salvation" to me. Here's more from St. Thomas Aquinas:

    • Reply to Objection 2: Reprobation differs in its causality from predestination. This latter is the cause both of what is expected in the future life by the predestined---namely, glory---and of what is received in this life---namely, grace. Reprobation, however, is not the cause of what is in the present---namely, sin; but it is the cause of abandonment by God. It is the cause, however, of what is assigned in the future---namely, eternal punishment. But guilt proceeds from the free-will of the person who is reprobated and deserted by grace. In this way, the word of the prophet is true---namely, "Destruction is thy own, O Israel."


    • Reply to Objection 3: Reprobation by God does not take anything away from the power of the person reprobated. Hence, when it is said that the reprobated cannot obtain grace, this must not be understood as implying absolute impossibility: but only conditional impossibility: as was said above, that the predestined must necessarily be saved; yet a conditional necessity, which does not do away with the liberty of choice.Whence, although anyone reprobated by God cannot acquire grace, nevertheless that he falls into this or that particular sin comes from the use of his free-will. Hence it is rightly imputed to him as guilt.

    As clear as the rays of the sun! Reprobation is God's permission of some to fall away, or in other words, the divine abandonment leaving those that are not elected on their own "free will" apart from His grace of perseverance unto Salvation. And when they have fallen away out of their own free will, then it would be rightly imputed to them as guilt. That's also the Augustinian position! That's exactly my position!

    thus, if in your doctrine which is similar to calvinist: The reject of good works on the part of the believers does'nt fit the theology of St, Augustine and Of St. Thomas.

    I don't know what you mean by "the rejection of good works", but I think you are referring to Calvin's heretical view on Justification which states that we are justified on the account of faith alone. Such doctrine I strongly abhor.

    But please keep in mind that we are talking about Predestination here, not Justification. We all know that Predestination and Justification are not the same thing. For us, Justification is by faith and good works. And to maintain this Justification we must persevere in holiness and charity until the very end. However, NO MAN is able to do all these things unless God "works in us to will and act according to His pleasure" (Php. 2:13). Thus, the need for Predestination. Predestination, therefore, is not Justification, but the preparation of the graces necessary for the elect to be Justified and eventually Glorified.

    Moroever, those that are elected were not chosen based upon their future choices (faith, good works, perseverance) or worthiness. For how can these things be the basis of God's election if it is He himself who gave them these gifts? Therefore, they were elected SO THAT they might be so, not because they would be so. St. Augustine and St. Thomas Aquinas taught the same thing EXPLICITLY:

    • Let us, then, understand the calling whereby they become elected,— not those who are elected because they have believed, but who are elected that they may believe. For the Lord Himself also sufficiently explains this calling when He says, "You have not chosen me, but I have chosen you." (John 15:16) For if they had been elected because they had believed, they themselves would certainly have first chosen Him by believing in Him, so that they should deserve to be elected. But He takes away this supposition altogether when He says, "You have not chosen me, but I have chosen you." And yet they themselves, beyond a doubt, chose Him when they believed on Him. Whence it is not for any other reason that He says, "You have not chosen me, but I have chosen you," than because they did not choose Him that He should choose them, but He chose them that they might choose Him; because His mercy preceded them according to grace, not according to debt. ~ St. Augustine, On the Predestination of the Saints, Ch. 34 [XVII]


    • "Therefore," says the Pelagian, "He foreknew who would be holy and immaculate by the choice of free will, and on that account elected them before the foundation of the world in that same foreknowledge of His in which He foreknew that they would be such. Therefore He elected them," says he, "before they existed, predestinating them to be children whom He foreknew to be holy and immaculate. Certainly He did not make them so; nor did He foresee that He would make them so, but that they would be so." Let us, then, look into the words of the apostle and see whether He chose us before the foundation of the world because we were going to be holy and immaculate, or in order that we might be so. "Blessed," says he, "be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in all spiritual blessing in the heavens in Christ; even as He has chosen us in Himself before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and unspotted." (Ephesians 1:3) Not, then, because we were to be so, but that we might be so. ~ St. Augustine, On the Predestination of the Saints, Ch. 36

    See? For St. Augustine, foreseen faith and good works (holiness) are not the basis of Election. They are instead the "fruits" of Election by Grace - "Not, then, because er were to be so, but THAT WE MIGHT BE SO." St. Thomas Aquinas agrees with St. Augustine (cf. Summa, I.Q-23.v; "Whether the foreknowledge of merits is the cause of predestination?"):

    • On the contrary, The Apostle says: "Not by works of justice which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us." (Titus 3:5) But as He saved us, so He predestined that we should be saved. Therefore, foreknowledge of merits is not the cause or reason of predestination.


    • I answer that, Since predestination includes will, as was said above (A[4]), the reason of predestination must be sought for in the same way as was the reason of the will of God. Now it was shown above (Q[19], A[5]), that we cannot assign any cause of the divine will on the part of the act of willing; but a reason can be found on the part of the things willed; inasmuch as God wills one thing on account of something else. Wherefore nobody has been so insane as to say that merit is the cause of divine predestination as regards the act of the predestinator. But this is the question, whether, as regards the effect, predestination has any cause; or what comes to the same thing, whether God pre-ordained that He would give the effect of predestination to anyone on account of any merits.
    St. Thomas Aquinas believed the same... For him, it is an insanity to insist that our merits is the cause of the divine predestination, since our merits are from God himself.


    much more

    Summa Theologiae Ia, Q. 23, Art. 8 [Christian Classics edition, p. 133]:

    "Wherefore we must say otherwise that in predestination two things are to be considered - namaly, The Divine Preordination; and its Effects. Asregards the former, in no possible way can predestination be furthered by the prayers of the saints. For it is not due to their prayers that anyone is predestined by God. As Regards the latter, predestination is sad to be HELPED BY THE PRAYERS OF THE SAINTS, and by other GOOD WORKS... whether it be one's own prayers, or those of another, or other GOOD WORKS, and such like, without which one would not attain to salvation."


    that is for rejection of good works by St. Thomas, tell me now if that doctrine of predestination is identical to yours?

    How exactly? It is 100% exactly my position, my dear brother!
    But if you are insisting that St. Thomas Aquinas taught that Predestination is based upon men's faith, good works, and perseverance, that would be another story.

    immutable

    Thus as men are ordained to eternal life through the providence of God, it is likewise is part of the providence To PERMIT some To Fall away from that end; this is called REPROBATION.

    The position of St. Augustine and St. Thomas Aquinas are in respectful of the freewill of man. God simply gives permission to fall away (to permit). But your God does not permit... Falling away instead.
    Where did I ever said that statements in red?
    [/b]
    for Aquinas reprobation is attributed to man while for YOU - you attribute it to man and to the eternal Decree of God.
    That, ultimately it is God who wills the doom of his own creature.
    You misread me and the father. We'll tackle this later on.
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    Re: Do you believe in Predestination?

    Post by Theophilus on Thu Jul 29, 2010 1:08 pm

    Yidda wrote:
    For Aquinas reprobation is attributed to man while for YOU - you attribute it to man and to the eternal Decree of God. That, ultimately it is God who wills the doom of his own creature.

    You misread St. Thomas Aquinas. He never taught that Reprobation is attributed to man. In fact, he taught the exact opposite. Read on (emphasis mine):

    • Reply to Objection 3: The reason for the predestination of some, and reprobation of others, must be sought for in the goodness of God. Thus He is said to have made all things through His goodness, so that the divine goodness might be represented in things. Now it is necessary that God's goodness, which in itself is one and undivided, should be manifested in many ways in His creation; because creatures in themselves cannot attain to the simplicity of God. Thus it is that for the completion of the universe there are required different grades of being; some of which hold a high and some a low place in the universe. That this multiformity of grades may be preserved in things, God allows some evils, lest many good things should never happen, as was said above (Q[22], A[2]). Let us then consider the whole of the human race, as we consider the whole universe. God wills to manifest His goodness in men; in respect to those whom He predestines, by means of His mercy, as sparing them; and in respect of others, whom he reprobates, by means of His justice, in punishing them. This is the reason why God elects some and rejects others. To this the Apostle refers, saying (Rom. 9:22,23): "What if God, willing to show His wrath [that is, the vengeance of His justice], and to make His power known, endured [that is, permitted] with much patience vessels of wrath, fitted for destruction; that He might show the riches of His glory on the vessels of mercy, which He hath prepared unto glory" and (2 Tim. 2:20): "But in a great house there are not only vessels of gold and silver; but also of wood and of earth; and some, indeed, unto honor, but some unto dishonor." Yet why He chooses some for glory, AND REPROBATES OTHERS, HAS NO REASON, EXCEPT THE DIVINE WILL. Whence Augustine says (Tract. xxvi. in Joan.): "Why He draws one, and another He draws not, seek not to judge, if thou dost not wish to err." Thus too, in the things of nature, a reason can be assigned, since primary matter is altogether uniform, why one part of it was fashioned by God from the beginning under the form of fire, another under the form of earth, that there might be a diversity of species in things of nature. Yet why this particular part of matter is under this particular form, and that under another, depends upon the simple will of God; as from the simple will of the artificer it depends that this stone is in part of the wall, and that in another; although the plan requires that some stones should be in this place, and some in that place. Neither on this account can there be said to be injustice in God, if He prepares unequal lots for not unequal things. This would be altogether contrary to the notion of justice, if the effect of predestination were granted as a debt, and not gratuitously. In things which are given gratuitously, a person can give more or less, just as he pleases (provided he deprives nobody of his due), without any infringement of justice. This is what the master of the house said: "Take what is thine, and go thy way. Is it not lawful for me to do what I will?" (Mat. 20:14,15).
    He does not say, "Why He... reprobates others, has no reason, except the human will / free will of man", instead He explicitly declared: "Why He... reprobates others, has no reason, EXCEPT THE DIVINE WILL". However, he also made it clear that Reprobation is "not the cause of... sin; but it is the cause of abandonment by God". We sin because we are born sinners, and unless we are divinely enabled by Grace - we can never will anything good, as St. Augustine puts it: "A man's free-will, indeed, avails for nothing EXCEPT TO SIN... he neither does his duty, nor sets about it, nor lives rightly" (cf. On the Spirit and the Letter, Ch. 5 [III]).

    Now Reprobation, according to St. Thomas Aquinas, is "the cause of the abandonment of God"; ABANDONMENT - or in other words, God's depriving the non-elect of His sufficient and infallible Grace leading to the fullness of Salvation. The Reprobate, which is a sinner since birth like the rest of us (therefore, undeserving of eternal life), is deserted by grace and left in his own sinful "free-will", thus when he fall way - it is rightly imputed to Him as guilt. In this sense it is said by St. Thomas that God "permits" some (referring to the Reprobate) to fall away; that is, by divine abandonment.

    Therefore, those whom God has Reprobated are not reprobated because they will "fall away"; Rather, they are Reprobated, and in that cause they are abandoned by God (i.e. deprives them of His salvific Grace), so that they would fall away out of their own "free will" (which in itself incline cannot will anything good unless by God's Grace). Thus St. Thomas Aquinas wrote:

    • Reply to Objection 3: Reprobation by God does not
      take anything away from the power of the person reprobated. Hence, when
      it is said that the reprobated cannot obtain grace, this must not
      be understood as implying absolute impossibility: but only conditional
      impossibility: as was said above, that the predestined must necessarily
      be saved; yet a conditional necessity, which does not do away with the
      liberty of choice.Whence, although anyone reprobated by God cannot
      acquire grace, nevertheless that he falls into this or that particular
      sin comes from the use of his free-will. Hence it is rightly imputed to
      him as guilt
      .

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    Re: Do you believe in Predestination?

    Post by Yidda on Thu Jul 29, 2010 1:20 pm

    Theophilus wrote:Yes, they are - because of Original Sin.

    However it is my personal conviction that they would go to Limbo if they die. Ialso consider the possibility of God graciously regenerating them so as to cleanse them from the stains of original sin prior to their death.

    I'm speaking of the souls not infants why are they foredoomed ? - God Decreed their Doom Before the Ages, as your theology imply? is it becaused of original sin you said, But everyone even the elect has original sin before baptism.

    Theophilus wrote:
    I am very confident that it is. I read them, you don't. You simply have no idea what your insisting.

    really?

    Theophilus wrote:
    This is what I was talking about a while ago; that God gives to some the Grace of Perseverance, while to others it is not given (and in this sense they are permitted to fall away, because left in their own free will - deserted by grace - the natural inclination of their will is to fall away).

    That, ultimately it is God who wills the doom of his own creature. St. Thomas reprobation is simply God permitting the sinner to fall or to commit sin.

    vs

    To Augustinianism it is attribute it to man and to the eternal Decree of God.

    Theophilus wrote:

    St. Thomas wrote:

    • Reply to Objection 1:God loves all men and all creatures, inasmuch as He wishes them all some good; but He does not wish every good to them all. So far, therefore, as He does not wish this particular good---namely, eternal life---He is said to hate or reprobated them.

    Hmmm... sounds like "selective Salvation" to me. Here's more from St. Thomas Aquinas:

    • Reply to Objection 2:
      Reprobation differs in its causality from predestination. This latter is the cause both of what is expected in the future life by the
      predestined---namely, glory---and of what is received in this life---namely, grace. Reprobation, however, is not the cause of what is in the present---namely, sin; but it is the cause of abandonment by God. It is the cause, however, of what is assigned in the future---namely, eternal punishment. But guilt proceeds from the free-will of the person who is reprobated and deserted by grace.
      In this way, the word of the prophet is true---namely, "Destruction is thy own, O Israel."


    • Reply to Objection 3: Reprobation by God does not take anything away from the power of the person reprobated. Hence, when it is said that the reprobated cannot obtain grace, this must not be understood as implying absolute impossibility: but only conditional impossibility: as was said above, that the predestined must necessarily be saved; yet a conditional necessity, which does not do away with the liberty of choice.Whence, although anyone reprobated
      by God cannot acquire grace, nevertheless that he falls into this or that particular sin comes from the use of his free-will. Hence it is rightly imputed to him as guilt
      .

    As clear as the rays of the sun! Reprobation is God's permission of some to fall away, or in other words, the
    divine abandonment leaving those that are not elected on their own
    "free will" apart from His grace of perseverance unto Salvation
    . And
    when they have fallen away out of their own free will, then it would be
    rightly imputed to them as guilt. That's also the Augustinian position!
    That's exactly my position!

    Yes that was Augustinianism position. But not of St. Augustine.

    As clear as the sun too : permit to fall is simply permit to sin (it is man's action Is it not?) , God does not take away free-will.

    In your Augustianism "other words, the divine abandonment leaving those that are not elected on their own free will". Look God is the damnator.The creatures simply fulfilled the damnation prepared for them by the Damnator God from Eternity.

    Is that thesame?


    Theophilus wrote:

    Yidda wrote:
    Thus as men are ordained to eternal life through the providence of God, it is likewise is part of the providence

    To PERMIT some To Fall away from that end; this is called REPROBATION.


    The position of St. Augustine and St. Thomas Aquinas are in respectful of the freewill of man. God simply gives permission to fall away (to permit). But your God does not permit... Falling away instead.
    ------------------------------------

    Where did I ever said that statements in red?

    read your words : "the divine abandonment leaving those that are not elected on their own free will".

    Theophilus wrote:Some are given only the grace of baptism (a), but are not given the infallible grace for them to have
    faith (b), thus they are reprobates. There are some exemptions, however.Those who die in infancy, but baptized, will be admitted to heaven.


    St. Augustine said, "this gift is given to some, while to some it is NOT GIVEN". I don't see any shadow of doubt that this explicitly states selective Salvation. If you believe otherwise, then prove it to be that way. You may read the whole book from cover to cover, and you will find the idea of "selective salvation" here and there defended by my patron and mentor, the great "Doctor of Grace". After all, the topic of the book focuses on Predestination, right?

    Salvation is two-fold: the gift of God and our cooperation with that gift by free will. Those who are condemned were offered the gift, in every case without exception, but they freely chose not to accept the gift of salvation, i.e. they sinned seriously and did not repent.

    Augustine does not sufficiently account for free will in his understanding of predestination. How can free will affect whether or not one is predestined? The Elect in Heaven are beyond Time. So everyone who ever will go to Heaven is already there. And God knows the eternal final destination of all created persons, since He is all knowing. But His knowledge does not control the choice of their free will.

    It is not that God made an arbitrary choice to save some and not others. All were offered salvation. Some chose not to accept it.
    Everything that God is and does is infallible. It is false to speak as if some graces are fallible and others infallible.

    The Magisterium teaches that baptism gives us the three theological virtues: love, faith, hope. So all the baptized have faith. Also, a person can lose the state of grace given at baptism by actual mortal sin, but he might still retain faith (though it is a faith that is dead without love).
    Theophilus wrote:

    Some are given the grace of baptism (a), the grace of infallible calling (b), the sufficient grace for good works unto Justification (c), but are not given then grace of Perseverance, thus they are also reprobates.

    Again, it is foolish to add 'infallible' to the call of grace, since all graces are without error. Also, all persons are offered grace
    sufficient for salvation; the only souls who are sent to Hell are those who commit actual mortal sin and refuse to repent. All persons are offered the grace of final perseverance; some choose not to accept it.

    You misunderstood the interpretation of Augustine what he was saying, and do not take into account the Church's teaching on salvation.
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    Re: Do you believe in Predestination?

    Post by Theophilus on Thu Jul 29, 2010 1:40 pm

    Yidda wrote:

    I'm speaking of the souls not infants why are they foredoomed- God
    Decreed their Doom Before the Ages, as your theology imply? is it
    becaused of original sin you said, But everyone even the elect has
    original sin before baptism.
    Yes, all of us are born sinners. Therefore, all of us deserve hell. So even if God won't deliver anyone from us, He remainsl Just and Fair, right? But it is the divine prerogative to predestine some to Salvation and to leave the rest in their bondage. St. Augustine will absolutely agree with me on that:

    • Faith, then, as well in its beginning as in its completion, is God's gift; and let no one have any doubt whatever, unless he desires to resist the plainest sacred writings, that this gift is given to some, while to some it is not given. But why it is not given to all ought not to disturb the believer, who believes that from one all have gone into a condemnation, which undoubtedly is most righteous; so that even if none were delivered therefrom, there would be no just cause for finding fault with God. Whence it is plain that it is a great grace for many to be delivered, and to acknowledge in those that are not delivered what would be due to themselves; so that he that glories may glory not in his own merits, which he sees to be equalled in those that are condemned, but in
      the Lord. But why He delivers one rather than another—"His judgments are unsearchable, and His ways past finding out." (Romans 11:33) For it is better in this case for us to hear or to say, "O man, who are you that repliest against God?" (Romans 9:20) than to dare to speak as if we could know what He has chosen to be kept secret. Since, moreover, He could not will anything unrighteous.
      ~ St. Augustine, On the Predestination of the Saints, Ch. 16
    Please don't totally ignore this particular passage from St. Augustine. He is here defending his position on Predestination, according to which some are granted faith, and some are not. Pelagius was horrified by this doctrine, the same way as it seems you are now. Pelagius, the heretic, accused St. Augustine of teaching that God unfairly chooses whom He will, but take heed to what the great Doctor of Grace said in defense to this allegation:

    • But why it is NOT GIVEN TO ALL ought not to disturb the believer, who believes that from one (i.e. Adam) all have gone into a condemnation, which undoubtedly is most righteous; so that even if none were delivered therefrom, there would be no just cause for finding fault with
      God
      .

    All of us are born in Sin (born with Original Sin from Adam), and none of us deserve eternal life. So, according to St. Augustine, even if none were delivered from us, God is still Just - since His Justice demand sins to be punished. Then shortly, he says concerning Predestination:

    • Whence it is plain that it is a great grace for many to be delivered, and to acknowledge in those that are not delivered what would be due to themselves; so that he that glories may glory not in his own merits, which he sees to be equalled in those that are condemned, but in
      the Lord.

    Straight from St. Augustine himself...
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    Re: Do you believe in Predestination?

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