There is always a choice. It is unique with humanity: we have free moral agency. It is not always clear what to choose but the fact that we have the ability to choose is innate to our nature. God set Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden and put a particular tree in it that held the key to the knowledge of good and evil. They were told not to eat of it. We all know what happened when they did. Bad choice!

God always gives us a choice. He told the Israelites: “See, I have set before thee this day life and good, and death and evil… I call heaven and earth to record this day against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing: therefore choose life, that both thou and thy seed may live” (Deuteronomy 30:15, 19, KJV). As newly born people of God, the Israelites were given options. God does not force Himself upon us; nature is bound by its nature but not humans. Nevertheless, God wants us to choose Him (2 Peter 3:9) and has given us every opportunity and advantage in choosing wisely (1 Corinthians 10:13).

It is a strange doctrine that argues you have no choice and that God chooses you without so much as the minimum of involvement or intention, forcing His will down your throat like a mother bird pushes worms down the gaping mouths of fledglings. Everything in God’s word contradicts that notion and, rather, teaches as though people have choices: the warnings (which are absolutely ridiculous if you cannot choose to rebel or obey), the encouragement (which is silly if you are not in control of you; why the pep-talk to someone who cannot change his/her condition) and the judgment (which is absolutely unjust if God is the one controlling you without your choosing to be involved in the process and then saving or condemning you when you had no choice in the matter).

If you are waiting for God to reach out from His heavenly realm and zap you with a salvation in which you have no say-so, you wait in vain. He has given us His inspired revelation in plain, understandable terms and set before us a choice (Joshua 24:15). The choice to submit to Him is wholly ours; He will not force obedience. God will not save us in our rebellion but His mercy is everlasting in our submission. Choose life.

Jeff Sweeten