Is Predestination Based on Whom God Foreknows Will Believe?

The Bible explicitly speaks about predestination, and therefore, the doctrine is undeniable. However, many disagree on how to interpret its meaning. One view in particular believes that God predestines to salvation all He foreknows will believe on Him. This view is commonly called conditional election because it states God chooses (elects) individuals to be saved based upon (conditioned upon) their foreknown future belief. It makes election conditional on man’s will in essence. The main text used to support this view is Romans 8:29.

Romans 8:29 – For those whom He [speaking of God] foreknew He also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the firstborn among many brothers.

From simply reading this verse, it is very possible to make the assumption that God’s predestining is based on His foreknowledge of people’s future faith in Him. However, I feel that the very next verse (v. 30) is vital to a proper understanding of what verse 29 is truly saying. Verse 29 by itself is an unfinished thought in many senses.
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The Cross and Salvation by Bruce Demarest

In The Cross and Salvation Bruce Bruce Demarest takes the reader step by step through the doctrines of salvation in order of their logical and temporal occurrence. He groups the book into six sections: 1) the plan of salvation which includes an introduction, grace, and election/predestination, 2) the provision of salvation, being the atonement, 3) the application of salvation, including the subjective aspects such as divine calling, conversion, and regeneration, and 4) the objective aspects such as union with Christ and justification, 5) the progress of salvation which is sanctification as well as preservation and perseverance, and finally, 6) the perfecting of salvation, which is glorification.

Within each section Demarest starts off by presenting the doctrine at hand’s history and significant theological views of the doctrine such as the Pelagian/Liberal view, the Semi-Pelagian (Catholic) view, Lutheran view, Weslyian/Arminian view, Neo-Orthodox (Karl Barth) view, Liberation view, Pentecostal view, Nazarene view, Keswick view, High Calvinist view, Moderately Reformed (or Calvinistic or Reformed Evangelicals) view, as well as other views. (However, which systems he talks about differs from one doctrine to the next, because some systems apply to certain doctrines and not others). This section is remarkable for many reason. For one, it lays a historical context for the reader. And secondly, it gives the reader a broad perspective on the doctrine and the various viewpoints concerning it, making the reader aware of false interpretations that might go unnoticed otherwise and possibly introducing the reader to various beliefs besides his own, which has several obvious benefits.
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