What does it mean to be drawn by the Father? To me, the question is what is God’s role in salvation? Some people – I used to be one of them - don’t agree with what seems to be the clear meaning of this verse. Some theologians would say this is an example of “prevenient grace,” which means the ability to come to Christ is dispensed to all men. I don’t think that interpretation is valid for two main reasons. The first is because the drawing here is selective. John 6:65 shows that God is in control of salvation, or to put it in biblical parlance “salvation belongs to the Lord” (see John 1:13). John 6:44 shows man’s universal incapacity – all lack the ability to come on their own because all are fallen. That’s why the “unless” in John 6:44 is a really big “unless”; God has acted and that changes everything!
The second reason is that the drawing here is efficacious; it produces the intended effect – salvation. John 6:37-40 show that those who are drawn are one and the same with those who will be raised up on the last day. Those who are drawn are those who will be raised, so obviously not every single person on the planet has been drawn – unless we want to walk down the path of universalism (“all are saved”). On a practical level, why would the Holy Spirit, who knows all things, draw all people to Jesus when he already knows who will be saved? What would be the point?
How was I drawn ... well, I was blessed to have parents who were not hypocrites or “Sunday-only” Christians, but modeled true love and integrity to my wonderful sister and me. This deeply impacted me and led me to see the reality of the God of the Bible. Even though they guided me, I eventually made my own decisions. They never forced me to do anything (well, relatively speaking) and taught me to think for myself.
I was blessed indeed to grow up learning about the things of God but sometime in Middle School, I began to idolize hip hop culture. Every aspect of it dominated my thoughts and goals. This “worship” increased as I began High School. At first I went to a private school but got kicked out because of my rebellious attitude. Eventually two main things “got” me: several relationships with unsaved girlfriends and painting graffiti on city walls. The first landed me in spiritual compromise, the second in court and community service. Some things happened which The Lord used to shake me up and forced me to take spiritual inventory. The big turning point was the summer in between my junior and senior years in high school and the second was halfway through my community college experience. By God’s grace, I finally truly repented and decided to go all out for Christ, although this process took some time.
For example, I asked to Lord to help me to erase any minute but lingering doubts about Christianity. This is when I became interested in origins, doctrine, history, and apologetics. That questioning process as a late teen has influenced me even now to learn more about the Truth of God’s Word so that I may help others in a similar position.