God Foreknows What Will Be Because He Has Decreed What Shall Be

God foreknows what will be because He has decreed what shall be. It is therefore a reversing of the order of Scripture, a putting of the cart before the horse, to affirm that God elects because He foreknows people. The truth is, He foreknows because He has elected. This removes the ground or cause of election from outside the creature, and places it in God’s own sovereign will. God purposed in Himself to elect a certain people, not because of anything good in them or from them, either actual or foreseen, but solely out of His own mere pleasure. As to why He chose the ones He did, we do not know, and can only say, ‘Yes, Father, for this was Your good pleasure’ [Luke 21:10]. The plain truth in Romans 8:29 is that God, before the foundation of the world, singled out certain sinners and appointed them unto salvation (2 Thessalonians 2:13). This is clear from the concluding words of the verse: “Predestinate to be conformed to the image of His Son.’ God did not predestinate those whom He foreknew were conformed, but, on the contrary, those whom He ‘foreknew’ (that is, loved and elected) He predestinated ‘to be conformed.’ Their conformity to Christ is not the cause, but the effect of God’s foreknowledge and predestination.”

– Arthur W. Pink, The Attributes of God, p.19

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