6

John 6:44 (ESV)

44 No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him. And I will raise him up on the last day.

Matthew 22:8-14 (ESV)

8 Then he said to his servants, ‘The wedding feast is ready, but those invited were not worthy. 9 Go therefore to the main roads and invite to the wedding feast as many as you find.’ 10 And those servants went out into the roads and gathered all whom they found, both bad and good. So the wedding hall was filled with guests.

11 “But when the king came in to look at the guests, he saw there a man who had no wedding garment. 12 And he said to him, ‘Friend, how did you get in here without a wedding garment?’ And he was speechless. 13 Then the king said to the attendants, ‘Bind him hand and foot and cast him into the outer darkness. In that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’ 14 For many are called, but few are chosen.

John 6:44 talks about being "drawn" by the Father. Matthew 22:14 talks about being "called".
John 6:44 assures salvation to everyone who is drawn by the Father (or does it?).
Matthew 22:14 states that only few of those who are called are chosen, not everyone.

Is there a contradiction between John 6:44 and Matthew 22:14?

6
  • You are ignoring the different times referred to in each passage when claiming a contradiction.
    – steveowen
    Apr 4 at 23:56
  • @steveowen - can you expand your thoughts in an answer? Sounds like you might have a good point. Apr 4 at 23:57
  • Right - only to be howled down by the many who think the resurrection to judgement is strangely a 'second chance' or an eternal torment - neither of which are biblical.
    – steveowen
    Apr 5 at 0:46
  • 5
    No one comes unless drawn does not mean all who are drawn will come.
    – Perry Webb
    Apr 5 at 0:55
  • "many who think the resurrection to judgement is strangely a 'second chance'" I'm not sure, but you might be referring to my own belief. The resurrection to judgment is not a "second chance" by any means. Many -- those who have had a chance to repent and accept Christ(the only means of salvation) but chose not to -- will be condemned to eternal destruction. However, many -- those who have not had a chance to repent and accept Christ, and thus could neither accept NOR reject Him(e.g. Sodom and Gomorrah) -- will have A chance(their FIRST, not second chance) to do so.
    – Rajesh
    Apr 5 at 0:57

5 Answers 5

5

There are 4 verbs relevant to the contradiction analysis:

  • draw & come (John)
  • call & choose (Matthew)

If "draw" is paired with "call" and "come" is paired with "choose", there is no contradiction.

God will call/draw many to the path of eternal life; not all of them will come and be chosen. Human agency is preserved--people can elect not to heed God's call.

4
  • What is the basis for assuming that the chosen come from the called? i.e. that they are inextricably linked and not two completely different groups.
    – steveowen
    Apr 5 at 1:38
  • @steveowen in verse 9 the people were invited/bidden/called, so it certainly sounds like there were people--who didn't get kicked out--who were both called & chosen. There's nothing said about people who are neither called nor chosen, and my answer suggests there are people who are called but not chosen. So the only remaining category is people who are chosen and not called. That possibility may not be explicitly rejected, but it doesn't seem to follow the message of the parable. If a person cannot be both called & chosen, I struggle to see the point of the parable. Apr 5 at 1:45
  • According to the broader text, Abraham, Moses, David, Paul were chosen. John the Baptist was chosen - they were not called in the sense the NT expresses.
    – steveowen
    Apr 5 at 2:02
  • Good answer. +1. However, I believe this might be improved further by correcting the incorrect assertion (in the OP) that those the Father "draws" are saved - they are not - it simply says that no one can, of his own will decide to be saved - all are drawn, but only some elect to be saved.
    – Dottard
    Apr 5 at 21:20
3

Many are called by the gospel. Multitudes hear some degree of gospel and respond to that word that is preached.

But that is not 'coming' to Christ himself.

Within the vast multitude of persons responding, to some degree or other, influenced by a whole variety of motives (some of them totally carnal, some of them grandiose and self-serving, some of them motives from within a good heart) , within this diversity, some are being truly drawn to Christ himself.

These are the 'chosen' being 'drawn' to the real Person of Christ by the true Person of the Father.

These are the 'few' among the 'many' called.

I can perceive no contradiction whatsoever, myself.

And it is my lifelong, personal experience and my lifelong, personal observation as well as my understanding of the word of scripture.

The parables of Jesus, especially the parables of the kingdom in Matthew, express this very thing - an appearance (the kingdom of heaven is 'like' this and that . . . ) that is larger than the true essence.

Fish are caught in bulk, trapped in a net : then they are sorted and some are rejected and thrown back.

Many are called, few are chosen.

2

The purpose of Christ's death on the cross is to put away the enmity between God and mankind that was created by our sin.

Among other things, this means that if you are coming to Christ for any reason other than to mend your relationship with God, you are coming for the wrong reason. That is the meaning of John 6:44. Some of us are drawn to Christ because we recognize that He will restore our fellowship with God. Other people are drawn not to Christ, but to a false notion of who Christ is.

The "called" in Matthew 22:14 are those who hear the Gospel. Some who hear will fully embrace it, and be accepted by God, while others will do some of it, and leave the rest undone, like unto King Saul's sparing of Agak and the cattle, and be rejected.

0

I think that the translation "draw" is not that proper. In the (Greek) original text the word used is "ἐλκύσῃ" and here it means something more like "enchant" or "seduce" (which means that the Holy Spirit will speak to the soul and evoke a pure love for God) rather than "call someone by speaking". It is more metaphorical rather than literal in the section you mentioned. If someone is seduced in the way I mean above and always wants to be close to God and he always tries to be close to Him, thence God will save him.

0

We read:

Then he said to his servants, ‘The wedding is ready, but those who were invited were not worthy. 9 Therefore go into the highways, and as many as you find, invite to the wedding.’ 10 So those servants went out into the highways and gathered together all whom they found, both bad and good. And the wedding hall was filled with guests.

11 “But when the king came in to see the guests, he saw a man there who did not have on a wedding garment. 12 So he said to him, ‘Friend, how did you come in here without a wedding garment?’ And he was speechless. 13 Then the king said to the servants, ‘Bind him hand and foot, take him away, and cast him into outer darkness; there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’

14 “For many are called, but few are chosen.”

Matthew 22:8-14

Since there is an element of evangelism here where the servants are commanded to invite people to the wedding, the "calling" is not about the internal call of God as in (Romans 8:30) but the "call" in Matthew 22:14 is talking about the external call of the gospel. This can be seen when people proclaim the gospel, see: Romans 10:14-15.

The internal call of the gospel is only seen in those who are chosen by God(Ephesians 1:3-4, Romans 8:30, John 6:44, John 6:37-40).

The word in Greek for "draw" in John 6:44 has the primary definition of: to drag, draw, pull in. Not woo or entice, source: https://www.billmounce.com/greek-dictionary/helkyo

So John 6:44 and Matthew 22:14 are talking about 2 different callings in reference to the first part of Matthew's verse with the words "many are called".

Many are called to repentance and faith in Jesus that they might attain the wedding, but only few are Chosen in Christ for redemption.

This is what Jesus was getting at:

"Everything that the Father gives Me will come to Me, and the one who comes to Me I certainly will not cast out. 38 For I have come down from heaven, not to do My own will, but the will of Him who sent Me. 39 And this is the will of Him who sent Me, that of everything that He has given Me I will lose nothing, but will raise it up on the last day. 40 For this is the will of My Father, that everyone who sees the Son and believes in Him will have eternal life, and I Myself will raise him up on the last day.”

All who come to Christ are first given to Him by His Father, and they shall come according to Jesus.

Jesus said a definite number of people would be given to Him:

"just as You gave Him authority over all mankind, so that to all whom You have given Him, He may give eternal life." (John 17:2)

The Gospel call is needed to draw God's sheep in(John 10), but not all will respond positively because not all are Chosen to be in Christ.

We also have a text that seems problematic to predestined drawing to Christ for eternal life:

And I, if I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all people to Myself.” (John 12:32)

Well, John 6:37 and John 12:32 cannot be a contradiction, since Jesus spoke both of them.

How do we reconcile them? There is more than one way to interpret John 12:32:

1.) Jesus draws all of mankind without exception. (If this is the meaning, He has failed His mission to save all per 1 Timothy 2:4) {By Jesus hypothetically failing His mission, read 1 Tim 1:15}

2.) Jesus draws all of mankind without distinction. (This can be seen in Revelation 5:9, where Jesus redeemed people from every tribe, tounge, nation, and people.)

3.) Jesus draws all of mankind universally and nobody goes to Hell in the end. (There is too much biblical data that would dismiss such a view of universalism)

View #2 is likely in view as being the correct answer, yet with view #1 if that is the case, one would have to wonder why God cannot accomplish what He wills.

Ephesians 1:11 makes it clear that God works all things after the counsel of His will, and Isaiah 46:9-10 makes it clear that God will accomplish all of His pleasure... and Ephesians 1:1-14 makes it clear that God does indeed accomplish His redemption. So interpretation #1 and #3 are unlikely.

CONCLUSION Many are called to Christ via the Gospel proclamation, but few are chosen in Christ for eternal life: (Ephesians 1:3-4, Romans 8:28-30).

2
  • 1
    View #2 is likely in view as being the correct answer, yet with view #1 if that is the case, one would have to wonder why God cannot accomplish what He wills. - relevant debate regarding the last point: youtu.be/72TRODe8BdA May 2 at 17:35
  • @SpiritRealmInvestigator Good debate, I’ve seen that one before. Not sure if losing salvation was the specific topic here; but nevertheless related.
    – Cork88
    May 2 at 18:03

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.