Democrats and Republicans, Crips and Bloods, Calvinists and Arminians. Whether it’s a battle in the nation, the neighborhood, or the church, two sides always show up to go to war.
Nearly every Christian Bible study eventually ends up in a theological Bermuda Triangle. It usually starts innocently enough with some unsuspecting person asking if we choose God, or if God chooses us. At that moment, guards start getting shivved and mattresses are set on fire as the prison riot commences.
If you are not familiar with this internship for Armageddon, don’t feel bad. The Calvinists are those who think that God chooses us. The Arminians are those who think that we choose God.
In John 6 Jesus says two things. One of them the Calvinists like. The other the Arminians like.
Jesus says in John 6:44, “No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him.” In this, we learn that salvation starts with God the Father drawing us toward Jesus Christ. That word draw can also mean drag. If you’ve ever played tug-of-war then you can envision you on one side of the rope and the Father on the other pulling you.
Jesus also says in John 6:47, “Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever believes has eternal life.” Whoever believes means that anyone and everyone should be invited to believe in Jesus Christ. Those who respond in faith by believing in Jesus are promised eternal life.
So, which is it? Does the Father draw? Or, do you decide?
Since both are in God’s Word and stated by Jesus, the answer is both. Every verse of Scripture is friends with the other verses in Scripture. Therefore, we don’t need to reconcile these Scriptures because you don’t need to reconcile friends. When speaking to non-Christians we need to lovingly invite them to believe in Jesus Christ and receive eternal life. As Christians, we should thank the Father that He drew us to Jesus so that we could be His kids forever.
How did the Father draw you to Jesus? Who do you need to invite to trust in Jesus?