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rnieman
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Joined: 2008/10/24
Posts: 146


 Concise Summary of Corporate Election

Is election individual or corporate? The following is a good overview of election being corporate. One can look at like this: when someone goes for a job interview, if the corporation wants to hire you, they elect, call, chose... But even if they extend you an offer, you have the final say so as to either receive it or reject it. Going further, predestination is the corporate understanding, it like to ships at the dock. Both have a pre-final destination, one is hell and one is heaven. In order to be on the one to hell the pre-req is to be in union to the world. To be on the one to heaven the pre-req is that you be in union to Christ. Bless you all. Russ

A Concise Summary of the Corporate View of Election and Predestination


Here is an excellent concise summary of the doctrines of conditional election and predestination from the corporate election perpective, which differs from the traditional Arminian view of individual election based on foreseen faith. Both the traditional view and the corporate election view are allowed in SEA, for both conceive of election and predestination as conditional on faith in Christ. This material comes from Zondervan's NIV Life in the Spirit Study Bible. The description of the doctrines of election and predestination is followed by some comments quoted from the study Bible's notes on 1 Peter 1:2 and Romans 8:29 to show how the corporate election perspective might view the place of foreknowledge in election, also quite different from the traditional Arminian view, though completely consonant with Arminian theology, figured as it is within a conditional view of election and predestination.

Election- God’s choice of those who believe in Christ is an important teaching of the apostle Paul (see Ro 8:29-33; 9:6-26; 11:5, 7, 28; Col 3:12; 1 Th 1:4; 2 Th 2:13; Tit 1:1). Election (Gk eklego) refers to God choosing in Christ a people whom he destines to be holy and blameless in his sight (cf. 2 Th 2:13). Paul sees this election as expressing God’s initiative as the God of infinite love in giving us as finite creation every spiritual blessing through the redemptive work of his Son (1:3-5). Paul’s teaching about election involves the following truths:

(1) Election is Christocentric, i.e., election of humans occurs only in union with Jesus Christ. “He chose us in him” (Eph. 1:4; see 1:1, note). Jesus himself is first of all the elect of God. Concerning Jesus, God states, “Here is my servant whom I have chosen” (Mt 12:18; cf. Isa 42:1, 6; 1 Pet 2:4). Christ, as the elect, is the foundation of our election. Only in union with Christ do we become members of the elect (Eph 1:4, 6-7, 9-10, 12-13). No one is elect apart from union with Christ through faith.

(2) Election is “in him…through his blood” (Eph 1:7). God purposed before creation (Eph. 1:4) to form a people through Christ’s redemptive death on the cross. Thus election is grounded on Christ’s sacrificial death to save us from our sins (Ac 20:28; Ro 3:24-26).

(3) Election in Christ is primarily corporate, i.e., an election of a people (Eph 1:4-5, 7, 9). The elect are called “the body of Christ” (4:12), “my church” (Mt 16:18), “a people belonging to God” (1 Pe 2:9), and the “bride” of Christ (Rev 19:7). Therefore, election is corporate and embraces individual persons only as they identify and associate themselves with the body of Christ, the true church (Eph 1:22-23; see Robert Shank, Elect in the Son, [Minneapolis: Bethany House Publishers]). This was true already of Israel in the OT (see Dt 29:18-21, note; 2Ki 21:14, note; see article on God’s Covenant with the Israelites, p. 298).

(4) The election to salvation and holiness of the body of Christ is always certain. But the certainty of election for individuals remains conditional on their personal living faith in Jesus Christ and perseverance in union with him. Paul demonstrates this as follows. (a) God’s eternal purpose for the church is that we should “be holy and blameless in his sight” (Eph 1:4). This refers both to forgiveness of sins (1:7) and to the church’s purity as the bride of Christ. God’s elect people are being led by the Holy Spirit toward sanctification and holiness (see Ro 8:14; Gal. 5:16-25). The apostle repeatedly emphasizes this paramount purpose of God (see Eph 2:10; 3:14-19; 4:1-3, 13-24; 5:1-18). (b) Fulfillment of this purpose for the corporate church is certain: Christ will “present her to himself as a radiant church…holy and blameless” (Eph 5:27). (c) Fulfillment of this purpose for individuals in the church is conditional. Christ will present us “holy and blameless in his sight” (Eph 1:4) only if we continue in the faith. Paul states this clearly: Christ will “present you holy in his sight without blemish…if you continue in your faith, established and firm, not moved from the hope held out in the gospel” (Col 1:22-23).

(5) Election to salvation in Christ is offered to all (Jn 3:16-17; 1Ti 2:4-6; Tit 2:11; Heb 2:9) but becomes actual for particular persons contingent on their repentance and faith as they accept God’s gift of salvation in Christ (Eph 2:8; 3:17; cf. Ac 20:21; Ro 1:16; 4:16). At the point of faith, the believer is incorporated into Christ’s elect body (the church) by the Holy Spirit (1 Co 12:13), thereby becoming one of the elect. Thus, there is both God’s initiative and our response in election (see Ro 8:29, note; 2 Pet 1:1-11).

Predestination. Predestination (Gk prooizo) means “to decide beforehand” and applies to God’s purposes comprehended in election. Election is God’s choice “in Christ” of a people (the true church) for himself. Predestination comprehends what will happen to God’s people (all genuine believers in Christ).

(1) God predestines his elect to be: (a) called (Rom. 8:30); (b) justified (Ro 3:24, 8:30); (c) glorified (Ro 8:30); (d) conformed to the likeness of his Son (Ro 8:29); (e) holy and blameless (Eph 1:4); (f) adopted as God’s children (1:5); (g) redeemed (1:7); (h) recipients of an inheritance (1:14); (i) for the praise of his glory (Eph 1:2; 1 Pe 2:9); (j) recipients of the Holy Spirit (Eph 1:13; Gal 3:14); and (k) created to do good works (Eph 2:10).

(2) Predestination, like election, refers to the corporate body of Christ (i.e., the true spiritual church), and comprehends individuals only in association with that body through a living faith in Jesus Christ (Eph 1:5, 7, 13; cf. Ac 2:38-41; 16:31).

Summary. Concerning election and predestination, we might use the analogy of a great ship on its way to heaven. The ship (the church) is chosen by God to be his very own vessel. Christ is the Captain and Pilot of this ship. All who desire to be a part of this elect ship and its Captain can do so through a living faith in Christ, by which they come on board the ship. As long as they are on the ship, in company with the ship’s Captain, they are among the elect. If they choose to abandon the ship and Captain, they cease to be part of the elect. Election is always only in union with the Captain and his ship. Predestination tells us about the ship’s destination and what God has prepared for those remaining on it. God invites everyone to come aboard the elect ship through faith in Jesus Christ. [Life in the Spirit Study Bible, pp. 1854-1855]

Life in the Spirit Study Bible note on 1 Peter 1:2 --

the foreknowledge of God We are “chosen” to be God’s people according to his foreknowledge, i.e., according to God’s own comprehensive knowledge of his plan of redemption in Christ for the church, even before creation and human history began (see Rom. 8:29 note). Foreknowledge is virtually a synonym of God’s sovereign and far-seeing purpose to redeem according to his eternal love. The “chosen” are the company of true believers, chosen in harmony with God’s determined plan to redeem the church by the blood of Jesus Christ through the Spirit’s sanctifying work (see article on Election and Predestination, p. 1845). All believers must participate in their election by their response of faith and by being eager to make their calling and election sure (see 2 Pe 1:5, 10, notes).

Life in the Spirit Study Bible note on Romans 8:29 --

those God foreknew “Foreknew” in this verse is equivalent to “foreloved” and is used in the sense of “to set loving regard on,” “to choose to bestow love on from eternity” (cf. Ex 2:25; Ps 1:6’ Hos 13:5; Mt 7:23; 1 Cor 8:3; Gal 4:9; 1 Jn 3:1).

(1) Foreknowledge means that God purposed from eternity to love and redeem the human race through Christ (5:8; Jn 3:16). The recipient of God’s foreknowledge or forelove is stated in plural and refers to the church. That is, God’s forelove is primarily for the corporate body of Christ (Eph 1:4; 2:4; 1 Jn 4:19) and includes individuals only as they identify themselves with this corporate body through abiding faith in and union with Christ (Jn 15:1-6; see article on Election and Predestination, p. 1854)

(2) The corporate body of Christ will attain to glorification (v. 30). Individual believers will fall short of glorification if they separate themselves from that foreloved body and fail to maintain their faith in Christ (vv. 12-14, 17; Col 1:21-23).

End of Study Bible

Another corporate interpretation of foreknowledge in relation to election beyond those mentioned by the study Bible is that it refers to the prior acknowledgment of the corporate people of God as his covenant partner (see Brian Abasciano, "Clearing Up Misconceptions about Corporate Election", Ashland Theological Journal 41 [2009] 67-102).
At the risk of oversimplification, all these corporate views of foreknowledge in election can be boiled down to saying that in the corporate election view, election according to foreknowledge refers to election based on the prior election of Christ and the corporate people of God in him.

 2010/9/24 10:43Profile
rnieman
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Joined: 2008/10/24
Posts: 146


 Re: Concise Summary of Corporate Election

Sorry, I did the link incorrectly.

[url=http://evangelicalarminians.org/A-Concise-Summary-of-the-Corporate-View-of-Election-and-Predestination]Society of Evangelical Arminians[/url]

Russ

 2010/9/24 10:47Profile
davidc
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Joined: 2010/8/15
Posts: 272
France

 Re: Concise Summary of Corporate Election

A good article, especially about election being for the body of Christ. However, near the end under'foreknowledge' it says:
"The corporate body of Christ will attain to glorification (v. 30). Individual believers will fall short of glorification if they separate themselves from that foreloved body and fail to maintain their faith in Christ" (vv. 12-14, 17; Col 1:21-23).

But Romans 8 vs 29 and 30 say:
"For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren. 30 Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified" Romans 8:29-30 (KJV)

This is all in the past tense. When I read this I discover the truth that he has predestinated me, called me, justified me and glorified me. He has done this to me (the "whom") as an individual and to the church (the "them") in verse 30.
Now I understand Col 1 v23 "If ye continue in the faith grounded and settled, and be not moved away from the hope of the gospel", and I have no intention of being moved away from Christ - I am dead.
But if we say that foreknowledge and predestination is corporate and use Romans 8 v29,30 to prove it, it must be seen that the church is already glorified, as she is justified and called.

I personally believe that this is the whole problem of trying to tie verses together in order to form a man made doctrine. It just will not work. We have the word of God, the scriptures and we have the Holy Spirit sent down to us who leads us into all truth.

David


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david

 2010/9/24 18:23Profile
Jimotheus
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Posts: 53


 Re:

Greetings to all:

Do you know it is interesting that none of the so-called, "proof text" that the Calvinist use to prove Unconditional election of particular persons before the foundation of the world actually teach it? Look at the texts that are normally used, and you will see that the text never say anything about individual persons before the foundation of the world; elect to salvation; etc. It is normally read into the text. Sometimes election is mentioned, but the text does not say when, or even how one is elect. None of these text even mention their most loved, and treasured word, "Decree" of God. Thats right folks, none of their proof text says nothing about God's "decree" from eternity past to save, or damn anyone. All of God's election; sanctification; salvation; justification; glorification, etc. is all in Christ alone, and not in any individual person as foolishly believed by the Calvinist. The life is in the Son, not John Calvin the murderer.

 2010/9/24 23:14Profile
Giggles
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Joined: 2009/12/12
Posts: 592


 Re:

The boards are rough tonight. God help us.


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Paul

 2010/9/24 23:49Profile
Miccah
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Joined: 2007/9/13
Posts: 1752
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 Re:

In regard to this always contentious debate, Cal V. Arm, Tozer writes...

“I refuse to fight over theories, but I am looking for the fellowship of the burning heart. I am looking for men and women who are lost in worship, those who love God until He is the sweetheart of the soul." “I thank God that I escaped from doctrinal hairsplitters and theological niceties. I thank God I was fanatical enough to shut my eyes and jump, and God took care of what is left."


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Christiaan

 2010/9/24 23:52Profile
Oracio
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Joined: 2007/6/26
Posts: 2093
Whittier CA USA

 Re:

davidc wrote:
(/quote)
A good article, especially about election being for the body of Christ. However, near the end under'foreknowledge' it says:
"The corporate body of Christ will attain to glorification (v. 30). Individual believers will fall short of glorification if they separate themselves from that foreloved body and fail to maintain their faith in Christ" (vv. 12-14, 17; Col 1:21-23).

But Romans 8 vs 29 and 30 say:
"For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren. 30 Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified" Romans 8:29-30 (KJV)
(/quote)

Yes, that passage seems to indicate that God secured His elect before the foundation of the world. I'm not sure if any of you are aware of the fact that Arminius actually leaned more heavily toward the perseverance of the saints than the possibility of losing your salvation. he stated he was not 100% sure but leaned heavily toward eternal security. That is where I lean toward as well. That is the Classical Arminian view.


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Oracio

 2010/9/25 0:04Profile
Jimotheus
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Joined: 2005/7/8
Posts: 53


 Re:

Greeting:

Well, I certainly respect and love brother A.W. Tozer. He was a real man of God and a soldier of the cross of Jesus Christ. However, I'm afraid that he was dead wrong in his attitude concerning what he called, "doctrinal hairsplitters" and, "theological niceties." Such an attitude is grossly irresponsible especially for a Christian leader. It is as if many are saying that doctrine ultimately is not that important. The only thing that matters is, unity. Shutting our eyes and simply jumping is not a biblical injunction. Nowhere in the Holy Bible does it proscribe that Christians simply close their eyes and jump. this is spiritually dangerous. We are to be discerning in these last days and that by the Scriptures. Any other design even if suggested by a real man of God like Tozer is to be rejected.
Secondly, it seems to some that their is nothing else that exist in God's universe except Calvinist and Arminians. This monochromatic outlook is unfortunate. But it seems to help the Calvinist argument if they can push everyone that rejects their Calvinistic fatalism into the Arminian camp. As amazing as this may sound, there are those of us who are not Arminians at all. We simply reject the unbiblical Augustinian theology of John Calvin in favor for the Faith that was once and for all time delivered to the saints.

 2010/9/25 0:23Profile
Miccah
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Joined: 2007/9/13
Posts: 1752
Wisconsin

 Re:

I agree Jimotheus. The reason that I posted Tozer is because his words hold wisdom. One does not need to hold to either camp, as you yourself stated, to believe what the bible says.

I do not believe that Tozer is speaking on unity, more so he is speaking of finding those who are on fire for the Lord.

Blessings brother. May He be glorified!


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Christiaan

 2010/9/25 0:56Profile
rnieman
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Joined: 2008/10/24
Posts: 146


 Re:

Hello Davidc,

Davidc wrote- “This is all in the past tense. When I read this I discover the truth that he has predestinated me, called me, justified me and glorified me. He has done this to me (the "whom") as an individual and to the church (the "them") in verse 30.
Now I understand Col 1 v23 "If ye continue in the faith grounded and settled, and be not moved away from the hope of the gospel", and I have no intention of being moved away from Christ - I am dead.
But if we say that foreknowledge and predestination is corporate and use Romans 8 v29,30 to prove it, it must be seen that the church is already glorified, as she is justified and called.”

Could you clarify a little more on the last part about "the church already glorified, as she is justified and called"

Thank you, Russ

 2010/9/25 8:49Profile





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