Louis Le Blanc on Predestination and Election Theses 21-29
Theses Theologicae [...] (London, 1683), pgs. 129-31
21. Yet, some [Reformed] seem properly to mean by the term election: the decree concerning some certain people to be effectually called to Christ and given true and living faith. So, election, according to them, has more to do with the communication of grace than the giving of glory. This is how the term election is commonly used by Testard in his Irenicum, Louis Cappell in his theses on election and reprobation, Moses Amyraut everywhere, and others who follow the doctrine and method of [John] Cameron.
22. There is also some difference of opinion among the theologians in the Reformed schools around the question of in what regard and condition is mankind the object of divine predestination. First, some in their assigning an object of predestination and election ascend beyond the fall of man and even the creation of man himself. And indeed, they want the decree of predestinating certain people to salvation in God, according to our mode of conceiving it, to be prior not only to the foresight of the fall of man into sin, but even the decree regarding the creation of man. And accordingly, the object of predestination itself is man neither created nor fallen in the foreknowledge of God, but instead man creatable. This is why they are called “supralapsarians” by other theologians. Of which number are Zanchi, Beza, Piscator, Perkins, Ursinus, Gomarus, Polanus, Voetius, Twisse, and not a few more!
23. But the greatest part of the doctors of the Reformed schools have considered, in the act of God predestinating, its object to have been a mass of humanity corrupted by sin, and they do not think that the decree about creating mankind and the permission of the first fall of man ought to enter into the whole decree of predestination nor do they wish to make those former decrees a part of that latter decree. But in their view, the foresight of the fall of man exists prior in God, according to our mode of conceiving it, to the decree regarding the granting and manifesting of mercy in the salvation of some people, which, by these theologians, is called election or predestination. And hence, according to them, the object of election and predestination is fallen man, having been corrupted by sin. And we ought not to extend that description and definition [of predestination and election to] before the fall of man and creation. And this view most conforms to the Canons of the Synod of Dordt. And a very great number of Reformed theologians follow that position, whose names, were we to enumerate them, would be too lengthy and unnecessary.
24. But among the Reformed are found some who make the object of election to be not simply fallen man, having been corrupted by sin, but additionally those called by an external call to the participation and communion in the grace of Christ. For they do not want to make the decree of Christ being sent as a redeemer, nor [that decree] about that grace offered to people through the preaching of the word to be a part of the decree of predestination, and instead they wish to subordinate the aforementioned decrees to that decree about the giving of eternal salvation to this or that person.
25. This was the opinion of George Sohnius once a professor of theology at Heidelberg Academy. For in the second volume of his Opera, he defines the predestination of man in this way: “It is a decree of God by which he preordained from eternity all human beings foreknown by him as fallen and called to Christ by the gospel to either life or death in order to eternally make known his glory.” But in explaining this definition he adds this: “That predestination was made in accordance with the prescience of God, that is, God preordained human beings foreknown to him, and therefore as corrupted by sin, and called through the gospel of Christ. For from eternity in his predestinating of them, he considered them not simply as people foreknown to him, but as people having fallen into sin and to be called again by Christ in the gospel.” To which he adds afterwards: “The object or matter of predestination is fallen mankind, and called again by the gospel. For this call is universal.” This is in his Exposition of the Chief Articles of the Augsburg Confession, the tract about eternal predestination, pg. 1000. Testard approved of and followed Sohnius’s position in his book On Nature and Grace, in the chapter on the will and decree of grace, section 9. And to his name, it is also necessary to add all those who follow the method and doctrine of Cameron in the doctrine of the redemption of man and the doctrine of election, since (?) they wish to stand on their own opinions.
26. But just as various theologians think variously about the object of predestination and election, so also it is necessary that they think different things about the effects of predestination and election. For those who hold that the object of predestination is mankind neither created nor fallen, but simply mankind creatable and able to be produced by God, place the creation and the permission of the fall among the means by which God acquires his intended end in predestination. Therefore, the creation and permission of the fall are, in their judgment, effects of predestination—indeed for some to life, but for others to death and destruction. You can see this position in Beza, Perkins, Bucanus, Polanus, and others of the same mind.
27. But those who deem the object of predestination and election to be man as he is considered by God fallen and corrupt by sin, and who do not subordinate the decree of creation and the permission of the fall to the decree about the demonstration of God’s justice and mercy among mankind, even for salvation, but among others his just punishment, do not think the creation of man nor the permission of the fall should be numbered among the effects of predestination. But they only want the effects of election to be those various means by which God frees human beings from sin, and leads them to blessedness and eternal life. Among these means they place the first and principal as the giving itself of the mediator, Christ, and his being sent into the world.
28. Finally, those for whom the object of election and predestination is not simply man as fallen, but additionally, called to the grace and communion of Christ, are not able to number the sending of Christ into the world and the redemption completed by his death to be among the effects of election. This follows because, according to them, the decree concerning the sending of Christ and concerning the redemption of the human race through Christ precedes the decree of election, and is presupposed by it. But the chief and proper effect of election is, according to them, the giving of true faith in time. And it follows that the conferment of the rest of Christ’s benefits by which one is led to eternal life is an effect of that same election.
29. Additionally, it is plain from what has been said that the words predestination and election both in the Roman and Reformed communions are not used in the same way and sense. And both schools of theology understand the terms in various ways. However, there are certain uses of those words abundantly accepted in the Roman school which the Reformed school does not grant, and, by the same token, those words are used by many Reformed theologians in a sense which cannot be found in the Roman School.
 This last clause is tricky. Not sure what is trying to be said.