How Should I Pray? | Watch This Episode on YouTube


Related Messages

Do I Have Free Will In Salvation?

To gain further clarity and understanding of things discussed in today’s podcast, consider listening to or watching the following sermons exposited from the Word of God, by Dr. Richard Caldwell:

The Natural Man's Response To Jesus

The Only Way To Come To Jesus

Gospel Reception (1)

Double Predestination - Pts 1 & 2

The Depraved & Desperate Condition of The Natural Man

The Glorious Grace of God

Preaching The Gospel To Christians

Wrath  & Works

The Golden Chain of Redemption

Watch this episode on Vimeo

Do I Have Free Will In Salvation?

This week on the Straight Truth Podcast, Dr. Richard Caldwell and host Dr. Josh Philpot discuss free will as it pertains to salvation in Christ, decision making, and choosing in general. Do we as fallen men and women choose God, do we contribute to our salvation? How does free will work with what the New Testament teaches about God pre-ordaining all things, predestination, and election? Do we have free will to decide and choose for ourselves?

Dr. Caldwell first explains that we do not contribute anything to our salvation. The faith that takes hold of God’s promise in Christ is not something that we were born with; no one is born a believer. Salvation comes about as a result of the new birth, or regeneration that Jesus speaks of with Nicodemus in John 3. Jesus explains that apart from the new birth, no one can see or enter the Kingdom of God. Ephesians chapter 2 teaches that everything about our salvation, even the faith brings salvation, is a gift from God.

When speaking of man’s freedom of the will, Dr. Caldwell says that we are all born with a measure of freedom. But it’s a unique kind of freedom that pertains to our spiritual nature. The Bible teaches that due to the fall of Adam, we are all born spiritually dead, spiritually blind, and spiritually deaf. This is a large part of the Apostle Paul’s gospel explanation in the book of Romans. He explains that before Christ, we were subject to the law of sin and death, dead in our trespasses and sins, living in the domain of darkness, unable to set ourselves free. In this state, we were free.

Live As Slaves To Sin

Woefully, however, it was a freedom to do what all lost men do; live as slaves to sin. In that state, we were helpless and powerless to change our nature. So what God does in saving us is not only bring the gospel, but He also grants what we need to take hold of the gospel. Regeneration by the Holy Spirit results in the shackles that bind us falling off, and our being set free from prison. Thus we are enabled to walk out of the darkness into the marvelous light. Released and made free by Jesus Christ.

Someone might then ask at this point, is God making all the decisions for us? Does He pre-ordain every decision we make, or is it simply related to salvation that God has pre-ordained our decision? Dr. Caldwell tells us that God has pre-ordained all things in the sense that everything is accomplishing His predetermined plan and purpose. But this does not make men robots. It doesn’t mean that man isn’t really thinking, deciding, and choosing.

The Bible doesn’t teach this. In fact, the Bible teaches that one day man is going to be held responsible for the choices he has made and for the ways that he has lived. God does not make us sin or do the things that we do. Everything is as God has pre-ordained it, and man is responsible for the choices he makes. Reconciling God’s sovereignty and man’s responsibility in our minds is nearly inconceivable, yet both things are true. God is not making our choices for us. We are making choices within the confines of our spiritual nature.

Men In Bondage As Slaves

Dr. Caldwell lastly reminds us that the Bible presents man in his lost condition as anything but free. It reveals men in bondage as slaves. So in some sense, it is incorrect for us to speak of man as having free will or his will being free. Terminology is important, and if we speak clearly using New Testament terminology, we cannot say that man is free. Before salvation, man is not free; he is a slave in bondage.

The Bible makes it clear that we make choices, it calls us to respond to what God has revealed to us, and it calls us to be wise in our decision-making and choosing. It also makes clear that we make our choices based on the state of our spiritual nature. Through Salvation in Christ, we are given new hearts, new natures. This new nature brings about change in our affections and desires to please and honor God. It is not a nature of empty robotic obedience that’s lacking love and understanding.

About The Straight Truth Podcast

The Straight Truth Podcast: Christian Opinions in an Increasingly Secular World. Join Dr. Richard Caldwell, Dr. Josh Philpot, and their guests as they discuss news events, current affairs, and cultural issues from a Biblical point of view. Find the truth at

The Straight Truth Podcast is a weekly opinion show hosted by Dr. Richard Caldwell and Dr. Josh Philpot. Straight Truth is available as an audio podcast on iTunes or as a video podcast through YouTube or Vimeo.  The duration of the podcast is approximately 10 minutes. We release new episodes every Thursday.

The topics discussed in the Straight Truth Podcast are current events, matters that challenge traditional Christian values, and questions submitted by audience members. Dr. Caldwell, Dr. Philpot, and their guests seek to answer these questions with Biblical truths and from a Christian conservative point of view. The Holy Bible is the inspired, infallible, and inerrant Word of God; it alone is and will be the basis and authority of
answering any and all questions.

The Straight Truth Podcast is the perfect podcast for those seeking to strengthen their faith, to be informed on how to broach difficult topics with a Christian point of view, to share their faith with unbelieving friends, to challenge the status quo of their own beliefs by viewing them under the lens of the Scriptures, to interpret current news events from a Biblical point of view, and more.

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Season 12 Credits

Produced by
Juan Carlos Claveria

Executive Producers
Joshua Philpot
David Anders

Hosted by
Joshua Philpot

Social Media Descriptions by
Michele Watson

Makeup Artist
Samantha Claveria

Graphic Design
David Navejas


Special Thanks to
El Centro Network

Music by

Motion Graphics
Szymon Masiak

Walking In Grace Produces The Straight Truth Podcast - The Best Christian Podcast On The Web

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