Predestination: First Chosen, First Loved
Admittedly, I did not choose God, until He chose me first. He loved me first, and I love him because of that. In that sense I was predestined by God, chosen, as one of His own. Yet if one allows the doctrine of predestination to go beyond God choosing us all collectively and "willing" us all to salvation, your theology becomes one in which eternal damnation is for some a totally unavoidable Heavenly mandated fate. Calvinists believe it so, and so do most Primitive Baptists, that man has no choice in the matter and that those who are going to be saved will be saved because God predestined the chosen few.
However, this doctrine has one main flaw, namely, that if God is not willing that any should perish as the Bible says, then he is either incapable of fulfilling his will, or he is in contradiction to His own will when he selects only a chosen few. Worse yet, God gets the blame for the millions who will be spending an eternity in Hell. This version of God is far removed from the gracious Savior of the scriptures.
Consequently, all verses about election and predestination must be interpreted as a collective choosing and elective plan that is put before the entire human race. First chosen, first loved and in that love offered a redemptive plan that will deliver a dead soul from its destiny of eternal punishment. This destiny was chosen by Adam (and subsequently us) who knew full well what he was doing when he accepted the fruit from his wife who was deceived.
It is important to remember that when God "willed" us to salvation, He did not remand us into His love. He simply offered the gift of life through the precious blood of Jesus. Each and every person must accept (believe on) this gift, for without it, he is doomed. Belief, though, is not a work of the flesh, but a response of the spirit, a response which all men are capable of, but are not necessarily willing. This conflict with the will of God and rejection of Christ causes us to continue in the state of condemnation imposed on us in Eden. God will not force nations, families, or individuals to accept him. Man has a free will. When man's will lines up with God's will, a man is saved by faith through grace, both of which are originated in God. The simple act of believing is all it takes.
Because of God’s “whosoever” clause, we all must accept Christ or reject him, believe or disbelieve, and that response of the spirit though it is not what saves us or condemns us, allows the grace of God to do its full work or hinders its power to save. If we reject him, we are already condemned and hence we will receive that condemnation, if we die in that rejection. If we accept him, we receive the gift of grace paid for by the Blood of Christ which does save us. We are accountable. God cannot get the blame for a man going to Hell, and a man cannot get the credit when he goes to Heaven. No man will have excuse or be able to charge God for his condemnation.