The subject of predestination brings us to the centuries-long debate between Calvinists and Arminians. That is the debate between God’s sovereignty and man’s free-will. If man’s free-will is able to conquer the plan of God then it is clear that God is not sovereign at all, but that he is, in fact, subject to the whims and fancies of billions of men and women upon the earth. The fact is, nothing can stop the plan of God. He is Lord of all.
Psalms 115:3 But our God is in the heavens: he hath done whatsoever he hath pleased.
God does not dwell in space and time and what he does is not under the authority of man. He dwells outside of time and he does exactly what he pleases.
Isaiah 57:15 For thus saith the high and lofty One that inhabiteth eternity, whose name is Holy; I dwell in the high and holy place, with him also that is of a contrite and humble spirit, to revive the spirit of the humble, and to revive the heart of the contrite ones.
God dwells in eternity. Think of it, there was a time when God was alone, in fact, he was not even God yet because being God signifies being an object of worship. Nothing was there to worship him yet. He was the Eternal One. There was no such thing as time, space or matter. There wasn’t even nothing for something to dwell in. [A little dry humor injected]. God dwelt alone in eternity. Then he spoke and created time, space and matter. He dwells outside and apart from it. He is the sovereign controller of all time, space, and matter. It is not outside of his personal control.
When we look at the plan of salvation we understand that nothing is out of order. Even the fall of man was ordained of God for a higher purpose, that to express his full attributes to his children, that came forth from his thinking. Before an atom was created, before there was even space for that atom to occupy, God had a plan in place. He wished to express himself fully through his own Son and then express himself through that Son into a body of people on the earth called the Bride.
Ephesians 1:3-4 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ: 4 According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love:
God chose us in Christ before the foundation of the world. Every type of the Bible expresses the purpose of God in this. When God made Adam and Eve, first he formed Adam from the dust of the earth. Then out of his side, God made Eve. In Ephesians 1:4 we see the same. The Eternal God chose the Bride in Christ before even any atom was created. Every individual that would experience full redemption in history would be chosen at that time. Therefore, even in eternity, God had a specific plan for every individual member that would make up the body of Christ. Brother Branham had a marvelous and humble way of expressing these beautiful truths. Let’s look more closely at his teaching.
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E-19 Now, if you are in Christ you are Abraham’s seed. ‘Cause the promise of Isaac, and through Isaac come Christ, through Christ all nations, made Abraham the father of all the nations. And then if you be in Christ, you become Abraham’s seed. And you’re heirs with Abraham.
And the promise was made to Abraham, not because he was a great man, or not because that he was a–a religious man. But it was by God’s foreknowledge; by election He chose Abraham. God chose you. You never chose God; God chose you. Jesus said, “No man can come to Me except My Father draws him first.”
So many people say, “Oh, I sought God, I sought God.” That’s a mistake. You don’t seek God; God seeks you.
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66 Someone said, “Well, I know I got saved, because I quit smoking.”
That wasn’t why I got saved; that wasn’t why you got saved. You got saved because God chose you before the foundation of the world to be saved. That’s the Scripture teaching. Amen. Now, you see, we begin to find out it’s not us; it’s Him (See?); He chose us.
Abraham couldn’t say, “Well, bless God, I come down from the tower of Babylon, hallelujah. That’s why I got saved.” He’d have saved the whole bunch then, if that’s the reason they done it. See, He didn’t do that.
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E-30 Now, who could be saved by the law? No one could be saved by the law. The law didn’t come to save us. The law was to magnify our sins, to point them out to us. And listen, to you legalist believers, I want to ask you something: There’s not one thing you can do to be saved in yourself. No sir. You are saved by grace and that alone, and you have nothing to do with it. God chose you in Christ before the foundation of the world. That’s right.
There’s not one thing you can do to merit. So you keep all the commandments you want to, join all the churches you want to, you’re still lost. You might know your catechism, say Hail Mary’s. You might know the Apostles Creed, the Doxology; you might know all the doctrine of the Bible. But to know the Bible is not Life. To know the church creed is not Life. But to know Him is Life. Alone to know Him… You might be baptized this way, that way, this way, that way, or sprinkled, poured, whatever it may be; you’re still lost until you know Him. To know Him is Life. The church in its condition…
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69 He elected Abraham. And that was the very beginning of our salvation that was given to man when He called him, and elected him, and predestinated him, and give him a promise, and made a covenant with Abraham and his seed forever. Now, we could go ahead here and read a full chapter in that, but we haven’t the time.
Now, God called. Watch, when He called Abraham here, He called him by election. Not because he was; because God was. And He called him out of his people, and blessed him, and told him that “I’m going to save you.” And on down here, He says, “And you shall come to Me in a ripe old age.” Before he done anything to deserve it, God chose him, told him. “And not only you, but your seed after you…” Oh, my.
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72 Another thing a seal signifies is ownership. See? The seal has a mark on it, shows ownership. When you are bought by the Blood of Jesus Christ and sealed by the Holy Ghost, you no longer belong to the world or anything pertaining to the world. You are owned by God.
And another thing is: a seal is a security. Seal means you are secured. Now, you that don’t believe in eternal security, I don’t know, but now… But a seal signifies security to its destination. Woe unto that guy that would try to break that seal. And the Holy Spirit Seal cannot be broken. You all have heard me say that people said, “The devil made me do this.” No, no, the devil didn’t do it. You just wasn’t sealed in, so then (You see?), ’cause when you’re sealed in, he’s sealed out. See?
Total Depravity of Man
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E-17 I believe this, that the only through that, and the… Since I’ve been with the Pentecostal people… And I explain that as a doctrine. I believe that gifts and callings are without repentance. See, there’s no way at all for you to do anything… I believe in the election of God, that God does the electing; God does the calling. You, taking thought, could not add one cubit to your stature. See? But whatever God has determined to be, it will be. And you are called by election.
I’ve heard people say, “Oh, I sought God day and night.” No man never sought God at any time. God seeks man, not man seeking God. The very nature from the garden of Eden… God… Instead of man running through the garden hollering, “Father, Father, where are You?”
It was God that hollering, “Adam, Adam, where are you?” See? And today the sinner does the same way.
A Part of God’s Own Life by Election
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18 There was a seed laying there, a predestinated seed that was in the–is God’s thought before the foundation of the world. There’s only one form of Eternal Life. If you’ve got Eternal Life then you, yourself, was in God’s thinking before the world was created. You’re an attribute of His thinking, ’cause eternal never did begin, or never can end. You’re a part of God’s economy always. It’s just reflecting. It’s becoming… Now, you’ve got one more picture to develop, that’s death. Then the negative becomes positive. Then you’re in the Bride, and with Christ. As He taught, like husband and wife today, so God, Christ and the church will be the same.
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69 Now, if we are the sons of God, His attributes… Which you are an attribute of your father, not your mother; your father. The germ lays in the father. See? And now. your mother was an incubator that bear you, bear the seed of your father. See? And the earth, in flesh, is also the incubator that bears the seed of God. See, just exactly. Not the world, how great the world is; it’s how great the God that made it. See, see? Now, if you are a son and daughter of God, then you were in God at the beginning. You’re His attribute. If you wasn’t there then, then you never was or never will be. ‘Cause, I cannot bear, from my loins, the son of this man here or that man there, I can only bear my own sons, and they would bear my likeness. Hallelujah. You see it? Sons and daughters was in God at the beginning. Now, look. You’ve got Eternal Life, you say. We believe it, that we got Eternal Life. Well, there’s only one form of Eternal Life, and that’s God. That’s the only thing that is eternal, is God. Then if you’ve got Eternal Life, that Life that’s in you always was, and you were in the loins of God before there even was a world. And when the Word Itself…
Salvation is of the Lord
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32 Now, here you are Arminian teachers, my brethren, I don’t mean to rub this in now. I want you just to watch this real close, to show you that it’s not by works, it’s by grace, by election, by foreknowledge. It’s God that does the saving. You have nothing to do with it. “Not him that willeth or him that runneth, but it’s God that showeth mercy.” Notice, “Abraham, come up here on the side of the hill. Now, you’ve watched the birds off of this… While He piled them together.” Said, “You’ve watched the birds off of them, and the sun is going down now.” And the Bible said, “A deep sleep fell on Abraham.”
“Now, you haven’t got nothing to do with it, Abraham. I’m just going to shut you out, show you, it’s not what you can do or what you want. It’s Me doing it. I’m doing the saving.” Saved him when he started, told him He’d come to him in an old age. He’d save his seed after him. God did it by sovereign grace. So what you scared about?