Grace Enablements

The means of this grace enablement include but are not limited to: Gods salvific love for all (John 3:16), God’s manifestation of His power so that all may know He is the Sovereign (Isaiah 45:21-22) and Creator (Romans 1:18-20), which assures that everyone has opportunity to know about Him. Christ paying for all sins (John 1:29), conviction of the Holy Spirit (John 16:7-11), working of the Holy Spirit (Hebrews 6:1-6), enlightening of the Son (John 1:9), God’s teaching (John 6:45), God opening hearts (Acts 16:14), and the power of the gospel (Romans 1:16), without such redemptive grace, no one seeks or comes to God (Romans 3:11).

Further, I believe that man, because of these gracious provisions and workings of God, can choose to seek and find God (Jeremiah 29:13; Acts 17:11-12). Moreover, no one can come to God without God calling (Acts 2:39) and drawing (John 6:44), and that God is drawing all individuals (John 12:32). The same Greek word for draw, helkuo, is used in both verses. “About 115 passages condition salvation on believing alone, and about 35 simply on faith.”[1] Other grace enablements may include providential workings in and through other people, situations, and timing or circumstances that are a part of grace to provide an opportunity for every individual to choose to follow Christ.[2]

updated 6-27-16

Ronnie W. Rogers 2016

[1] Lewis Sperry Chafer, Systematic Theology, vol. VII, (Dallas Seminary Press, 1948), 273-274.

[2] These are grace enablements in at least three ways: first, they are provided by God’s grace rather than deserved by mankind; second, the necessary components for each and every individual to have a real opportunity to believe unto salvation are provided or restored by God; third, they are provided by God without respect to whether the individual will believe or reject, which response God knew in eternity past.

The offer of the gospel is unconditional, but God sovereignly determined that the reception of the offer was conditioned upon grace-enabled faith. Thus, faith is the means to being regenerated and saved, not the reason for being saved. Finally, this truth of Scripture does not imply that God was held captive to the choice of man, but rather that God coextensively determined to create man and provide this genuine offer in eternity past; additionally, in order to fulfill this plan, God is not obligated to disseminate the gospel to people that he knows have rejected the light He has given them in creation and will in fact reject the gospel that He enables the lost to believe or reject; although He may still send the gospel to them.