Did Jesus Really Believe in Unconditional Election and Irresistible Grace for some?

I just concluded a six-week series on John 12:27-50 entitled The Dynamic of the Gospel Encounter. This passage gives extraordinary insight into what actually transpires when the gospel is shared. In this series, I contrast the perspective of Calvinism and Extensivism. That is to say, does the passage teach that God unconditionally elected some to salvation, or does it teach that He designed His plan of redemption to comprehend the unconditional offer of salvation to everyone while making the reception of the benefits of the gospel conditioned upon grace-enabled faith?

Through exposition, the series explores such things as the meaning of the words “all” and “draw” (vs. 32), and whether a person can exercise faith while still in the darkness of his sin or only after irresistible grace and regeneration as Calvinism teaches (vs. 35-36). It demonstrates that the passage does not teach unconditional election, but rather it very compellingly teaches that everyone who hears the gospel is enlightened and given both a command and opportunity to believe in Christ unto salvation (vs. 35-36).

Of eternal importance, the passage clearly teaches that there is a time when anyone hearing the gospel can exercise grace-enabled faith unto salvation, while simultaneously teaching there is a time when a person cannot believe (vs. 35-41).

I pray that this series encourages everyone to share the gospel more often with both greater urgency and confidence in God’s desire and provision for everyone to receive salvation.

The series is available @ http://www.sermonaudio.com/source_detail.asp?sourceid=trinitynorman