To have foreknowledge is crucial when one is designing and planning. If you are designing a building, you must know ahead of time how to finance, where to place it, basic layout, structure, materials, workers, etc., before you can even attempt to begin work. So God, with His omniscient foresight, has used His wisdom to plan for man’s eternal well-being.
Abraham knew God had a wonderful plan because he (Abraham) was looking for a “city which has foundations, whose architect and builder is God,” Hebrews 11:10. God knew when He planned man’s creation that man would sin. God therefore, planned for a redeemer. Man would be “…redeemed with precious blood, as of a lamb unblemished and spotless…foreknown before the foundation of the world…” I Peter 1:18-20.
Foreknowledge does not indicate manipulation of free will, which all men have. It implies an intelligence so great that God can plan without violating any of His four attributes – Justice, Wisdom, Love, and Power – and without violating man’s freedom to choose. God’s foreknew that in the resurrection, mankind will have the opportunity to reflect on their sinful choices and compare the results of those choices with the results of obedience to God’s righteous law. Most of mankind will choose righteousness, become perfect, and live forever. (Psalm 76:10)
The scriptures demonstrate that there have been, are, and will be “elected” groups, such as the nation of Israel (Amos 3:2; Isaiah 45:4) and the Church (Romans 8:33; Mark 13:27, etc.). In the future, God’s elect will include all the obedient of mankind (Isaiah 65:22). Elected ones are chosen at different times for different purposes. Eventually, “all the families of the earth” will be blessed, and be of God’s elect – God’s “ransomed” people. Isaiah 35:10
Predestination, as referred to in Romans 8:29, shows that God foreknew that He would call out a Bride, the Lamb’s Wife, for His Son, as in Ephesians 1:4, 5 – chosen “before the foundation of the world.” This predestination is of a class, not individuals, of a 144,000 (Revelation 7:1-4). It is the character traits of the class that are predestinated. Romans 8:29 (NKJV), “For whom (the Bride of Christ) He foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son…”
In the end, because of God’s grand foreknowledge, Christ and His Church will bless all the families of the earth. Genesis 22:18 (NKJV), “In your seed all the nations of the earth shall be blessed…” Galatians 3:29 (NKJV), “And if you are Christ's, then you are Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise. What grand plans that were laid out before the foundations of the world!