Home > Calvinism, Election > The Reformed Doctrine of Predestination Chapter XXV- Predestination in the physical world

The Reformed Doctrine of Predestination Chapter XXV- Predestination in the physical world

The Reformed Doctrine Of Predestination

Chapter XXV

PREDESTINATION IN THE PHYSICAL WORLD

2. COMMENTS BY NOTED SCIENTISTS AND THEOLOGIANS

Huxley once said that if man had possessed exact knowledge of natural laws before the rise of plants and animals on the earth, he could have predicted not only the geographical contour and climate of a given region, but also the exact flora and fauna which would have been found there, — arising, as he supposed, through the spontaneous generation of life from non-living matter, — and while we do not accept his extreme statement about the origin of life, this, nevertheless, gives us some idea of the uniformity that a great scientist expects to find in the laws of nature.

The writer was once in a discussion group conducted by Dr. H. N. Russell, head of the Department of Astronomy in Princeton University, and one of the outstanding astronomers of our time, in which Dr. Russell declared that apart from the influence of mind in the world he believed in an absolute predestination made effective through the fixed laws of nature.

“The uniformity of the laws of nature,” says Dr. Charles Hodge, “is a constant revelation of the immutability of God. They are now what they were at the beginning of time, and they are the same in every part of the universe. No less stable are the laws which regulate the operations of the reason and conscience.” And again he says: “As in all these lower departments of His work, God acts according to a preconceived plan. It is not to be supposed that in the higher sphere of His operations, which concern the destiny of men, everything would be left to chance and allowed to take its undetermined course to an undetermined end. We accordingly find that the Scriptures distinctly assert in reference to the dispensations of grace not only that God sees the end from the beginning, but that He works all things according to the counsel of His will, or, according to His eternal purpose.” 1

Dr. Abraham Kuyper, who was admittedly one of the outstanding theologians of the last century, tells us: “It is a fact that the more thorough development of science in our age has almost unanimously decided in favor of Calvinism with regard to the antithesis between the unity and stability of God’s decree, which Calvinism professes, and the superficiality and looseness, which the Arminians preferred. The systems of the great philosophers are, almost to one, in favor of unity and stability.” He goes on to say that these systems “clearly demonstrate that the development of science in our age presupposes a cosmos which does not fall a prey to the freaks of chance, but exists and develops from one principle, according to a firm order, aiming at one fixed plan. This is a claim which is, as it clearly appears, diametrically opposed to Arminianism, and in complete harmony with Calvinistic belief, that there is one supreme will in God, the cause of all existing things, subjecting them to ordinances and directing them towards a pre-established plan.” And again, he asks, What does the doctrine of foreordination mean except that “the entire cosmos, instead of being a plaything of caprice and chance, obeys law and order, and that there exists a firm will which carries out its design both in nature and in history?” 2

Loraine Boettner- The Reformed Doctrine of Predestination

 

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