When it rains, it pours. And when it pours, as many as are destined to get wet go outside. This does not mean these unfortunate individuals have lost the ability to choose. It does mean the outcome of their choices has been predetermined: if you walk outside in a downpour, you will get drenched; if you stay inside, you will be dry — every time.
This is the idea behind Acts 13:48. At first glimpse, it may appear this verse declares some people had been predestined to salvation. However, if you examine the verse in light of other Scriptures, you will discover an important distinction from the popular Calvinist teaching of election. Acts 13:48b says, “As many as were ordained to eternal life believed.” Other verses indicate a person receives eternal life after putting his or her faith in Christ (John 3:15–16; 6:47). Because of these other verses, we cannot conclude the people in Acts 13:48 were predestined to be saved. Rather, we must interpret the verse simply to mean those who were destined to get wet went outside — by choosing to put their trust in Christ, they were destined to receive eternal life.
God will not hijack our free will and force us to make any decision. To make a choice is to participate in the consequences which are connected with it. We need not perform any mental gymnastics to understand this. We need simply to be aware of the choices which have been set before us and to choose wisely. If we choose to put our trust in Jesus Christ as our Savior, then we are destined for Heaven; but if we choose to reject the Savior, we are destined for Hell. If we choose to trust God to provide for our needs, then we are destined to receive a blessing (Jeremiah 17:7–8); but if we choose to trust in men, then we are destined to be cursed (Jeremiah 17:5–6). It’s raining, my friend. How much do you want to get wet?
Devotional by Pastor Jim Scudder, Jr.