What is the point of preaching to the lost if God already knows who will accept or reject Him?

Recently in my immediate circles, there have been many discussions regarding predestination. What the word means. What it may or may not imply about God’s character and nature. What it implies about salvation and so forth. There are many facets of God’s sovereignty that can and should be discussed by Christians in an effort to grow in understanding of what has actually been revealed to us in scripture and that we might grow in the unity of the faith. I look forward to having more of these helpful discussions. What follows is an effort to move the conversation further along.

When talking specifically about predestination as it pertains to salvation, one of the common objections that I am faced with goes something like, “If God knows who is and who is not going to be saved, what is the point of evangelizing? What is the point of preaching to the lost if God already knows who will accept or reject Him?”

Unfortunately this has been a stumper for many Christians who can and should easily know the answer to this. Many who refuse to believe in the Biblical (actual) definition of predestination (which is that God destined beforehand: hence pre-destination) seem to think this argument sticks when it comes to salvation. However, it isn’t even a legitimate or coherent objection.

To illustrate it’s absurdity, let me borrow an analogy I recently heard from Sye Ten Bruggencate, a Christian apologist. If God, being omniscient, knows that my belly will be full after dinner this evening, do I still have to eat? Does God’s foreknowledge of my full belly imply that I don’t have to actually eat my dinner? Of course not! Now for some reason when we are talking about dinner and not salvation, this objection suddenly seems silly to us and yet it is precicely the same objection.

Here is the point. God, the Author, uses means. He is the Storyteller and we live in His theater. He is telling a story in and with His material world and He reaches His ends the same way any Author does, by means. This is why we eat, this is why we pray, and this is why we preach the gospel to the lost. Because our eating, praying and preaching are real and effective means that our sovereign Father uses to accomplish His glorious and good plan.

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