Perhaps you have never really given this much thought, but if you are a Christian in LOVE with Jesus Christ, washed clean from all sin by the blood of Jesus, then God CHOSE YOU! As a matter of fact, God chose you before you were born and even before the world was created. God chose you to be a part of His Family, to have a seat at the table and be a member of the Kingdom of God!
Ephesians 1:3: Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ, 4 just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we would be holy and blameless before Him. In love….
5 He predestined us to adoption as sons and daughters through Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will, 6 to the praise of the glory of His grace, with which He favored us in the Beloved.
That’s right, if you have made a choice to follow Jesus Christ, it’s because HE chose YOU. Wait a minute...did I choose Jesus or did He choose me?
John 15:16: You did not choose Me but I chose you, and appointed you that you would go and bear fruit, and that your fruit would remain, so that whatever you ask of the Father in My name He may give to you.
What? God chose me and not the other way around? But what about Free Will? We will get to that in a moment. But first, let us remember that God is Sovereign over all things. Nothing is impossible for God and nothing that happens in this universe is outside of God’s influence and authority.
After all, He is the CREATOR, who has CREATED everything that exists for HIS GOOD PLEASURE.
Revelation 4:11: Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created
Ephesians 1:9: Having made known unto us the mystery of his will, according to his good pleasure which he hath purposed in himself:
Colossians 1:16: For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him:
Being created for God’s pleasure does not mean humanity was made to entertain God or provide Him with amusement. God is a Creative Being, and it gives Him pleasure to create. God is a personal Being, and it gives Him pleasure to have other beings He can have a genuine relationship with, to share His Love and Glory.
Scripture tells us that God LOVES the whole world (John 3:16), but He does not CHOOSE to SAVE the whole world. He DESIRES for THE WHOLE WORLD to be SAVED and NOT LOST, but He does not ORDAIN it.
This issue of PREDESTINATION can be a difficult issue for us to try to wrap our puny human minds around, but we will try our best to explain this to you based on our understanding of Scripture.
It is our HOPE that after reading this post, you will feel more in LOVE with your Savior JESUS CHRIST, and more SECURE in His love for you!
Paul addresses this same issue in Romans 9, as he tries to explain the doctrine of predestination, or the divine fore-ordaining of all that will happen, regarding God’s CHOOSING some and not others.
Romans 9:10: For this is the word of promise: “At this time I will come, and Sarah will have a son.” 10 And not only that, but there was also Rebekah, when she had conceived twins by one man, our father Isaac; 11 for though the twins were not yet born and HAD NOT DONE ANYTHING GOOD OR BAD, so that God’s purpose according to His choice would stand, not because of works but because of Him who calls, 12 it was said to her, “THE OLDER WILL SERVE THE YOUNGER.” 13 JUST AS IT IS WRITTEN: “JACOB I HAVE LOVED, BUT ESAU I HAVE HATED.”
14 What shall we say then? There is no injustice with God, is there? Far from it! 15 For He says to Moses, “I WILL HAVE MERCY ON WHOMEVER I HAVE MERCY, AND I WILL SHOW COMPASSION TO WHOMEVER I SHOW COMPASSION.” 16 So then, it does not depend on the person who wants it nor the one who runs, but on God who has mercy. 17 For the Scripture says to Pharaoh, “For this very reason I raised you up, in order to demonstrate My power in you, and that My name might be proclaimed throughout the earth.” 18 So then He has mercy on whom He desires, and He hardens whom He desirES
Admittedly, these are difficult verses to understand. Before the twins were born, God loved Jacob, but detested Esau? Why? I thought God loved the whole world? What does it mean that God hated Esau? First, let’s be clear that Romans 9 is not actually addressing salvation itself, but rather, Paul is addressing God’s Divine Purpose regarding the prophesied Messiah. Namely, God ordained before the foundation of the world, that the prophesied Messiah (JESUS CHRIST) would be brought to us through the bloodline of Jacob (Israel), not through Esau. God chooses whom He Will for His purposes.
When Paul stated that God loved Jacob and hated Esau (twin brothers), he was referencing the Old Testament prophet Malachi who wrote these verses long after the death of both Jacob and Esau. God did not hate the man Esau, but rather, it was the HOUSE OF ESAU (Edomites) who invoked God’s hatred.
“For thy violence against thy brother Jacob shame shall cover thee, and thou shalt be cut off for ever.” – Obadiah 1:10
Obadiah 1:10 does NOT refer to any violence Esau did to Jacob personally while they were alive, but to the violence done to Jacob’s descendants (Israel), by Esau’s descendants (Edom), after both Jacob and Esau were long dead. To more deeply understand these prophecies about the Edomites in Malachi and Romans 9, we need to understand that God is also using the words “Jacob and Esau” as metaphors for those who want God and His ways, and for those who do not. Those who REJECT God and His Messiah Jesus (Yeshua), who HATE God’s people and His laws/precepts, will remain under God’s wrath.
God is JUST, and His choices are FAIR and JUST. When God CHOOSES, He is not doing so out of “partiality“, meaning that He does NOT choose favorites, but He does show FAVOR based on His Divine purpose.
One example of God’s “fairness” is found in the book of Acts, Chapter 1. Many of Peter’s fellow Jews thought that God loved them more than the gentiles, but Peter came to understand that God does NOT show favoritism. God does not favor the Jew over the Gentile. He DESIRES that people of ALL NATIONS would REPENT and be SAVED.
2 Peter 3:9: The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that ALL should come to repentance.
1 Timothy 2:4: who wants all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.
Acts 10:34: Opening his mouth, Peter said: “I most certainly understand now that GOD IS NOT ONE TO SHOW PARTIALITY, 35 but in every nation the one who fears Him and does what is right is acceptable to Him.
God genuinely DESIRES all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth. Yet to fulfill His eternal purpose in Christ, He CHOSE only the ELECT “out of the world”, and passed over the rest, leaving them to the damning consequences of their sin AND UNBELIEF. The GUILT for their damnation rests entirely on them because of their sin and rejection of God’s only LIFELINE – JESUS CHRIST. God is not to blame for their unbelief. There is a difference between God’s DESIRE and His DECREE. God DESIRES for all people to be saved and come to the knowledge of the truth, but He does NOT DECREE it BECAUSE He LOVES us enough to give us FREE WILL. In the same manner, God does NOT LIKE or DESIRE SIN, and yet He ALLOWS it (for now), because He loves us enough to give us FREE WILL.
Ephesians 3:11: This was in accordance with the eternal purpose which He carried out in Christ Jesus our Lord,
John 17:16: They are not of the world, just as I am not of the world
Romans 1:18: For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of people who suppress the truth in unrighteousness, 19 because that which is known about God is evident within them; for God made it evident to them. 20 For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, that is, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, being understood by what has been made, so that they are without excuse.
Romans 1 tells us that God has made it abundently clear to all people that HE EXISTS and that HIS ONLY PATH TO SALVATION IS JESUS OF NAZARETH. God is EXTREMELY PATIENT in waiting for His Elect to be saved; however, His Patience will not last forever. There is coming a day when God will pour out His Wrath on those who REJECT their Creator and REFUSE God’s ONLY ATONEMENT (JESUS CHRIST) for the sin nature that we are all born into.
If God desires for all to be saved, why does He only CHOOSE SOME for salvation, and not all? Who are the “ELECT”? Does the “elect” have any responsibility, or can they pretty much do whatever they want and be saved because they are God’s “chosen people”?
In the Greek, the word is “eklektos” meaning to be chosen, or selected, for God’s divine purposes, called out of the world (sin), and conformed to the IMAGE of HIS SON (JESUS). The Bible does not give us an exact reason why God chooses some as His Elect and not others; however, we are given some clues.
- First, we must understand that God is Righteous, Just, and Sovereign. This means that whatever God does is good and right, and we should never put ourselves in a position of “judging God”. We are puny little humans with a very small scope of understanding, and cannot really see the Big Picture, meaning there is MUCH MORE here that we do not understand. We just have to TRUST GOD that His Choices are JUST AND FAIR.
- God loves the whole world. But.…He chose the ones whom He loved that were weak, small, and oppressed, while rejecting the proud, the arrogant, the dominating. In our weakness, God will make HIS STRENGTH manifest.
Deuteronomy 7:7: “The Lord did not make you His beloved nor choose you because you were greater in number than any of the peoples, since you were the fewest of all peoples, 8 but because the Lord loved you and kept the oath which He swore to your forefathers, the Lord brought you out by a mighty hand and redeemed you from the house of slavery, from the hand of Pharaoh king of Egypt.
1 Corinthians 1:26: For consider your calling, brothers and sisters, that there were not many wise according to the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble; 27 but God has chosen the foolish things of the world to shame the wise, and God has chosen the weak things of the world to shame the things which are strong, 28 and the insignificant things of the world and the despised God has chosen, the things that are not, so that He may nullify the things that are, 29 so that no human may boast before God.
God has chosen the weak, the foolish, the insignificant and the despised things of the world to shame the strong, the “important”, the elite. God chooses the “little guy”. God is NOT like us…fallen humanity, who judges people based on status, wealth, beauty, or popularity/fame. No, God does not work that way. These things mean nothing in the kingdom of God. Man looks at the external, but God looks at the heart.
1 Samuel 16:7: But the Lord said to Samuel, “Do not look at his appearance or at the height of his stature, because I have rejected him; for God does not see as man sees, since man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.
3. ELOHIM (GOD – Father/Son/Holy Spirit) is FAITHFUL and will ALWAYS honor His Covenants FOREVER. God made a Covenant with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob (Israel), and those Covenants STILL STAND. The NEW and Everlasting COVENANT is the means that God uses to bring ALL PEOPLE – JEW and GENTILE into RELATIONSHIP with HIM. Deuteronomy 7:7-8 states that one of the reasons God CHOSE Israel is because He was honoring the Covenant that HE had previously made with the Patriarchs.
4. The Bible (Romans 8) tells us that God “foreknew” the ones whom He predestined or chose to receive salvation. What does “forknow” mean? The Greek word for “forknew” is proginōskō, and is really only used in 5 places in the New Testament. This word means: to have knowledge of beforehand; namely, that they would love him. I don’t know about you, but I find this super interesting and thought provoking. God knew, before the foundation of the world, who would love Him and who would not, circumstances excluded. This foreknowledge seems to be the primary contributing factor in God’s CHOICE for HIS ELECT.
Romans 8:29: For those whom He foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son, so that He would be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters; 30 and these whom He predestined, He also called; and these whom He called, He also justified; and these whom He justified, He also glorified.
John 6:64: But there are some of you who do not believe.” For Jesus knew from the beginning who they were who did not believe, and who it was who would betray Him. 65 And He was saying, “For this reason I have told you that no one can come to Me unless it has been granted him from the Father.”
Still, God calls out to ALL PEOPLE, (WHOSOEVERWILL) to receive salvation, but only few are chosen, the ones whom God FOREKNEW. John 6 makes it clear that from the beginning of time, before the foundation of the world, Jesus KNEW who would BELIEVE in HIM and who WOULD NOT (FOREKNOW). God gives those whom He did not choose many, many opportunities to receive and LOVE His Son Jesus Christ; however, only those who are CHOSEN will do so, those whom God FOREKNEW. Sadly, the others will either IGNORE God’s call alltogether, or they will mock and rebuke it. God’s “Call” is an invitation to RECEIVE HIS SON JESUS CHRIST, be CONFORMED TO the’ IMAGE of JESUS (PURE LOVE), and ultimately be a part of god’s KINGDOM (family).
This response by those who are NOT CHOSEN is seen in Jesus’ Parable of the Wedding Feast.
MATTHEW 22: Jesus spoke to them again in parables, saying, 2 “The kingdom of heaven is like a king who held a wedding feast for his son. 3 And he sent his slaves to call those who had been invited to the wedding feast, and they were unwilling to come. 4 Again he sent other slaves, saying, ‘Tell those who have been invited, “Behold, I have prepared my dinner; my oxen and my fattened cattle are all butchered and everything is ready. Come to the wedding feast!”’ 5 But they paid no attention and went their separate ways, one to his own farm, another to his business, 6 and the rest seized his slaves and treated them abusively, and then killed them. 7 Now the king was angry, and he sent his armies and destroyed those murderers and set their city on fire. 8 Then he *said to his slaves, ‘The wedding feast is ready, but those who were invited were not worthy. 9 So go to the main roads, and invite whomever you find there to the wedding feast.’ 10 Those slaves went out into the streets and gathered together all whom they found, both bad and good; and the wedding hall was filled with dinner guests.
11 “But when the king came in to look over the dinner guests, he saw a man there who was not dressed in wedding clothes, 12 and he *said to him, ‘Friend, how did you get in here without wedding clothes?’ And the man was speechless. 13 Then the king said to the servants, ‘Tie his hands and feet, and throw him into the outer darkness; there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth in that place.’
14 For many are called, but few are chosen.”
If one is CHOSEN by God, does that mean they are not responsible for anything they do? Are they allowed to slide on into Heaven without giving God a thought? NO! Quite the Contrary! What we saw above is that THE ELECT will RECEIVE JESUS CHRIST into their hearts. They will LOVE GOD (FATHER, SON, HOLY SPIRIT) with ALL their hearts, souls, mind and strength and love their neighbors as themselves. The Elect WILL respond to the invitation with EAGERNESS! They WILL BE DRESSED IN the proper Wedding Garments, which is a symbol of the RIGHTEOUSNESS OF CHRIST.
How do you know if you are one of THE ELECT? If you LOVE JESUS CHRIST, if you DESIRE HIM to be LORD of your LIFE, if you DESIRE to give up your own self-will to follow HIS WILL or PLAN for your life, then you are MOST CERTAINLY one of the ELECT!
What this means is that…
- God KNOWS your name!
- GOD CHOSE you before the foundation of the world!
- God CALLED you with HIS HOLY SPIRIT
- God PREDESTINED you to be a part of HIS KINGDOM
- God CLEANSED and JUSTIFIED you with the blood of JESUS
- God LOVES you more than you could EVER IMAGINE
- You are IMPORTANT and BEAUTIFUL to GOD
- You have a Divine purpose, to be CONFORMED to the image of HIS SON.
- You have God’s FAVOR and BLESSINGS
- God WILL GLORIFY you and receive you with JOY as a part of HIS FAMILY.
Ten Biblical Facts about THE ELECT
- GOD WILL VINDICATE THE ELECT (Luke 18:7)
- JESUS CHRIST IS GOD’S ELECT, FIRSTBORN of MANY BRETHREN (Romans 8:29, 1 Peter 2:6)
- THE ELECT ARE JUSTIFIED BY GOD AND FREE FROM SPIRITUAL ACCUSATION (Romans 8:33)
- THE ELECT ARE INSTRUCTED TO CLOTHE THEMSELVES WITH NINE THINGS: COMPASSION, KINDNESS, HUMILITY, GENTLENESS, PATIENCE, FORGIVENESS, LOVE, PEACE, AND GRATEFULNESS. (Colossians 3:12-15)
- PAUL’S MINISTRY WAS DEDICATED TO ENSURING THE SALVATION OF THE ELECT (2 Timothy 2:10, Titus 1:1)
- THE ELECT ARE A CHOSEN PEOPLE CALLED TO DECLARE THE GOODNESS AND MERCY OF GOD. (1 Peter 1:1,2)
- IN THE LAST DAYS, SATAN TARGETS THE ELECT WITH DECEPTION (Matthew 24:24, Mark 13:22)
- THE ELECT WILL BE GATHERED TOGETHER AND KEPT FROM HARM JUST PRIOR TO THE FINAL OUTPOURING OF GOD’S WRATH UPON THE EARTH (Matthew 24:31, Mark 13:27)
- THE GREAT TRIBULATION WILL BE CUT SHORT FOR THE SAKE OF THE ELECT (Matthew 24:22, Mark 13:20)
- THE ELECT WILL ACCOMPANY JESUS CHRIST IN HIS DEFEAT OF THOSE WHO WAGE WAR AGAINST HIM (Revelation 17:14)