Why would God command all to repent but not everyone will?

Some want to believe that we have a choice to be saved or not because God said we must repent and believe to have eternal life.

It seems to me that God said to repent and believe because some within the group were intended to hear and respond affirmatively, or at least be prepared to do so in the future – but not all were intended to respond affirmatively.

Let me give an example: Let us say I own a soup kitchen and would love to feed everyone. But I know most people are too proud to do so. I know someone within a group is hungry and no one else is, but that someone else will be in the future, and I say to the group, “Everyone who chooses to go to the soup kitchen will be fed.” I know no one else but the one person is hungry will go. The choice is available to all, but none but those for whom the message was intended and who would chose to go right then will actually go when I first make the choice available. Now let us say that later someone else within the group is fired from their job (and that I knew it would happen), gets hungry and recalls the message (as was intended) and choose to go to the soup kitchen. Now we have two people in the group who heard the message who responded affirmatively – one immediately after hearing the message, and one later (after undergoing an experience which prepared them for the message they had already heard). The others were not prepared for the message, were never intended to take up the invitation, and never did take up the invitation, yet the invitation was made available to all.

We have our choice – but it is only after God has done the work.

It is all God, not us. God foreknew us. God chose us. God moved us to repent. God gave us faith. God saved us by grace through faith.


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