Jeremiah 26:3

Jeremiah 26:2-6 (see also Jeremiah 18:6)
“Thus says the LORD, ‘Stand in the court of the LORD’s house, and speak to all the cities of Judah who have come to worship in the LORD’s house all the words that I have commanded you to speak to them. Do not omit a word! Perhaps they will listen and everyone will turn from his evil way, that I may repent of the calamity which I am planning to do to them because of the evil of their deeds. And you will say to them, ‘Thus says the LORD, “If you will not listen to Me, to walk in My law which I have set before you, to listen to the words of My servants the prophets, whom I have been sending to you again and again, but you have not listened; then I will make this house like Shiloh, and this city I will make a curse to all the nations of the earth.”’”

One member of The Society of Evangelical Arminians states:God tells Jeremiah that the people might listen to him and repent. But the thing is that the people do not listen and repent. Now this understandable on Arminian theology, even if God knew what the people would do with certainty. They still could do the other, and then if one takes the view that God is outside of time (not the only Arminian view of course), it becomes even more understandable that God would speak of what could be while possessing absolute foreknowledge of what would in fact be, since it would all be present to him). But if Calvinistic determinism were true, this statement would be absolutely false. They could not repent, because God would have decreed that they not repent. Calvinism is logically incoherent and untenable!”  (SEA)
















Clearly, God had something that He was planning,” but was reluctant to bring it about. This speaks of conditionality, which of course would just be an illusion, if all of their choices were immutably scripted. Of course God knows the future, but clearly, this passage shows that God did not fix and determine what their choices would be. Their choices are self-determined, just as God’s plans are self-determined.

Question: Perhaps” refers to something that is un-determined. But according to Calvinism, everything is pre-determined. So how is there any room for perhaps?

Answer:  Perhaps refers to contingencies, but there is no room in Calvinistic Determinism for contingencies. If Jeremiah was a committed, deterministic Calvinist (or at least of that mind-set), what sense do you think that he would have made of the Lord’s statement?