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Calvin on Predestination & Foreknowledge…

“We say rightly that [God] foresees all things, even as he disposes of them; but it is confusing everything to say that God elects and rejects according to his foresight of this and that. When we attribute foreknowledge to God, we mean that all things have always been and eternally remain under observation, so that nothing is either future or past to his knowledge: he sees and regards them in the truth, as though they were before his face. We say that this foreknowledge extends throughout the circuit of the world and over all his creatures. We call predestination the eternal decree of God by which he decided what he would do with each man. For he does not create them all in like condition, but ordains some to eternal life, the others to eternal damnation. (Ins., III, 21, 5.)

” ‘But since [God] see things to come for no other reason than that he has determined that they should come, it is folly to dispute and debate what his prescience is doing, when it is apparent that everything occurs by his ordinance and disposition’, he is not denying that distinction, but on the contrary maintaining the difference of nature between foreknowledge and predestination. Foreknowledge has for its object the decisions of the divine will; predestination is identical with that will.” (Inst., III, 23, 6.. Calvin is quoting in part Laurent Valla, in the first section.)

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