There is no other way – Part 4
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).
Summary. Concerning election and predestination (Christianity), 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.
Why syncretism is a serious problem
• Syncretism frustrates God’s purpose and goals for creating mankind. God created mankind in His own image so that he could have with us a loving, personal relationship for all eternity (Rev 21:3). Syncretism frustrates this purpose because the only way to enter into that relationship is through the saving grace offered by Jesus Christ.
• Syncretism trivialises the sufferings of Christ. “Then Christ died in vain” (Gal 2:21). “trampled the Son of God underfoot, counted the blood of the covenant by which he was sanctified a common thing, and insulted the Spirit of grace?” (Heb 10:29). When considering the death of Christ, it is of utmost importance to note that He did not die the easy painless way e.g die in His sleep (sleep and not wake up). He died in a most horrendous way ever recorded in the history of mankind. The truth that He even knew beforehand that He would die in that manner is another horror on its own. Yet he voluntarily gave up Himself to such a gruesome event. The crucifixion was not even an isolated event. The stages of suffering that culminated in the crucifixion need further consideration. Do not forget that although Jesus is God incarnate, he was also human.
He displayed physical symptoms that all humans experience. The physical and spiritual sufferings of Jesus Christ began in Gethsemane. “His sweat was as it were great drops of blood” (Luke 22:44). Under great stress, the small capillaries in the sweat glands can break and mix blood with sweat. Crucifixion was a feared and shameful form of execution. The victim was forced to carry his cross along the longest possible route to the crucifixion site as a warning to bystanders. Jesus was nailed to the cross; death came by suffocation as the person lost strength and the weight of the body made breathing more and more difficult. Crucifixion was a hideously slow and painful death.
• Syncretism is a sign of ongoing spiritual warfare and attack on the church. Syncretism is a most pernicious lie originated by Satan, the father of lies (Jn 8:44) and propagated by people, both nonbelievers and even many who claim to be believers. Syncretism is an indication that some people go to church without even knowing who they worship because they are, in truth, not Christians. “Now if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he is not His” (Rom 8:9).
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