From Wikipedia:

In Christian theology, conditional election is the belief that God chooses for eternal salvation those whom he foresees will have faith in Christ. This belief emphasizes the importance of a person's free will. The counter-view is known as unconditional election, and is the belief that God chooses whomever he will, based solely on his purposes and apart from an individual's free will. It has long been an issue in Calvinist–Arminian debate.

What is the Biblical basis for Conditional Election?

Counterpart question: What is the Biblical basis for Unconditional Election?

  • 1
    This is a thorny subject because even conditional election can imply (to some) that Christ's atonement was limited to those who would be saved. I would rather express it this way - God's atonement is universal but but actual salvation is for those who elect to be saved.
    – Dottard
    Feb 25 at 21:10
  • the problem with proving conditional election is that you have to have the free will first to determine an outcome predetermined at some point in the past? I think it's possible to be both (it might sound contradictory but not everything is exclusive)
    – Lenny
    Feb 27 at 10:33
  • @Dottard - what is your view on synergism? Feb 27 at 14:01
  • The theology of synergysm as espoused by most is usually to restrictive, especially the Roman Catholic version. My view is based on the definition of love. If we love God, it cannot be forced nor contrived because it would not be love but emotional "rape". Salvation is God's initiative entirely but that does not force our response.
    – Dottard
    Feb 28 at 1:22

1 Answer 1


There are too many scriptures that show the conditional nature of salvation to meaningfully review here. However, let's focus on one common thread in scripture: perseverance. Scripture teaches that it is those who persevere unto the end that are saved, that that which is promised to us is contingent upon this.

Hebrews 10:36 You need to persevere so that when you have done the will of God, you will receive what he has promised.

1 Timothy 4:16 Watch your life and doctrine closely. Persevere in them, because if you do, you will save both yourself and your hearers.

James 1:12 Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him.

2 Timothy 4:6-8 For I am already being poured out like a drink offering, and the time for my departure is near. 7 I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. 8 Now there is in store for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will award to me on that day—and not only to me, but also to all who have longed for his appearing.

Also, a bonus scripture - because I think it is very powerful at speaking to not just our responsibility to keep God's commands, but also to our personal ability to do so. To keep the commands is a choice with corresponding consequences/rewards:

Deutoronomy 30:11-16 Now what I am commanding you today is not too difficult for you or beyond your reach. 12 It is not up in heaven, so that you have to ask, “Who will ascend into heaven to get it and proclaim it to us so we may obey it?” 13 Nor is it beyond the sea, so that you have to ask, “Who will cross the sea to get it and proclaim it to us so we may obey it?” 14 No, the word is very near you; it is in your mouth and in your heart so you may obey it. 15 See, I set before you today life and prosperity, death and destruction. 16 For I command you today to love the Lord your God, to walk in obedience to him, and to keep his commands, decrees and laws; then you will live and increase, and the Lord your God will bless you in the land you are entering to possess.

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