Jim Packer is perhaps in danger of falling into this mystical way of thinking with his introduction of the word antimony (in Evangelism and the sovereignty of God). He defines "antinomy" as "an appearance of contradiction between conclusions which seem equally logical, reasonable or necessary" (18). It "is neither dispensable nor comprehensible ... It is unavoidable and insoluble. We do not invent it, and we cannot explain it" (21). God "orders and controls all things, human actions among them"...yet "He holds every man responsible for the choices he makes and the courses of action he pursues" (22). "To our finite minds this is inexplicable" (23). John Piper has criticised him for this language. It is not, in his judgement, “improper to probe into the very mind of God if done in the right spirit”. Pink agrees.
Certainly those who speak of the mystery involved have a point and we should not suppose that we can simply solve what is no doubt a mystery to some extent. However, it is right that we should prayerfully study the Scriptures and at least try to see how these two Bible doctrines fit together. There are difficulties it is true but we should seek to face them honestly and seek as much light from the Word as we can.
Perhaps Spurgeon gets the balance about right (in his autobiography) when he says, slightly poetically,
“That God predestines, and yet that man is responsible, are two facts few can see clearly. They are believed to be inconsistent and contradictory, but they are not. The fault is in our weak judgement. Two truths cannot be contradictory to each other. If, then, I find taught in one part of the Bible that everything is fore-ordained, that is true; and if I find, in another Scripture, that man is responsible for all his actions, that is true; and it is only my folly that leads me to imagine that these two truths can ever contradict each other. I do not believe they can ever be welded into one upon any earthly anvil, but they certainly shall be one in eternity. They are two lines that are so nearly parallel, that the human mind which pursues them farthest will never discover that the converge, but they do converge, and they will meet somewhere in eternity, close to the throne of God, when all truth doth spring."