One of the greatest misconceptions regarding the doctrines of grace or Calvinism is that it undermines zeal for evangelism. Nothing could be further from the truth. In fact, the doctrines of grace, rightly understood, will actually produce a boldness because the truth of salvation has been settled. The miracle work of conversion belongs to God and not man.
The doctrine of unconditional election teaches that God saved us — not on account of any merit or goodness in us but rather of His own sovereign and unconditional choice. God “saved us and called us to a holy life–not because of anything we have done but because of his own purpose and grace. This grace was given us in Christ Jesus before the beginning of time…” (2 Timothy 1:9).
When I look back upon the days that led to my own profession of faith in Christ, I am one-hundred percent certain that I would not have been considered a candidate for salvation by anyone’s standards! But, that’s how it is with Jesus! There is no such thing as the “religious sort” or the “religious type”. His grace is free and He lavishes it upon those whom He has chosen from the foundation of the world.
John Benton, in his booklet “Evangelistic Calvinism: Why the Doctrines of Grace are Good News” discusses how the “doctrines of grace are in fact five beautiful diamonds from which the glories of Jesus wonderfully shine to attract those who are lost in sin.” In this brief excerpt he explains one of the reasons why the doctrine of unconditional election, rightly understood and proclaimed “will knock down every barrier to bring sinners to Christ.”
“God does not choose a certain type of person to save and transform into a Christian. God’s choice is free. The witness of Scripture is that he has chosen all types, from sensuous party-going Samson to cunning, lying Jacob, and from beautiful, gentle Esther to the murderous religious bigot, Saul of Tarsus. He has chosen poor and rich, respectable citizens and despicable criminals, heterosexuals and homosexuals, all as objects of his transforming grace. There are no age, class, gender or racial limits. The Bible specifically informs us that he has chosen people from every language, tribe, and nation to be the heirs of his salvation. There are no restrictions to free grace.
We can therefore say to sinners, ‘If God has chosen all types, then why not you?’ “
Now tell me…isn’t that good news?
Whoever you are, whatever you’ve done — you can come, just as you are to a righteous God who graciously and mercifully justifies ungodly and unholy sinners!