“To each of his disciples, Jesus simply said, “Follow me.” That was an invitation, not a requirement. An invitation respects the freedom on the invitee to accept of decline. – That men and women can go to heaven is an expression of God’s love; that they can go to hell is an expression of the value he places on their freedom. – God desires, not requires, a relationship with us. It is not a one-sided affair; we are co-participants with him, both in our relationship with him and in our work in the world. God does not pull all the strings. He counts us too important to do that. To find without seeking, to hear without listening, to say yes without the possibility of saying no is to negate the value of my seeking, my hearing and my participating. God did not make us to be puppets.”

John Fischer

God always was, is now and forever shall be in sovereign control over events in His creation. God created it God controls it. But that doesn’t mean that we’re like robots and God causes everything single thing to happen: God doesn’t cause me to sin or to wave my hand in the air. He ordains or allows me to do it, but He doesn’t make me to do. I choose to do that. We are created in God’s image and like God we have the ability to choose: we have free will. So we shouldn’t think of God as a puppet master who pulls all the strings. Rather, He is more like a chess Grandmaster who is able to respond to every move of His opponent, so that the result always achieves what God desires, even when His own will is resisted.

God has bestowed on us the gift of freewill – the ability to choose – and He will not force salvation upon us; He will not force us to accept Jesus as Lord. In fact, in the whole of creation Jesus’ authority is only ever resisted by the wills of human beings.

Our freedom of choice is so valuable to God that He restrains Himself from manifesting His presence in a way where our freedom of choice would be removed.

Bill Johnson

Bill Johnson, Encountering the Goodness of God - 90 Daily Devotions, 2017, Destiny Image, day 27, p.53

The Bible tells us that God created mankind is his own image… male and female he created them. In all of creation we are different; we are unique because we are made in the image and likeness of God, who created mankind to have dominion and to take care of the earth – with God, but under God’s direction. And because we are made in God’s image we have also been endowed with a personality, character and freewill, the ability to choose for ourselves. But mankind chose wrong; we chose to ignore God and to do things our own way, and we messed up… that’s the problem – what the Bible calls sin – that separates us from God!