29 October 2009

You Have Been Chosen

Dear Christian, have you ever let the depth of this truth truly permeate your heart? You have been chosen! Chosen by God Almighty!

The doctrine of election is, I think, simultaneously the most wonderful and most confusing doctrine presented in the Bible. Wonderful because there is truth in the fact that we Christians have been chosen by God. Confusing because the Bible also teaches human volition, and the open invitation of Christ for all who will believe. So how do we reconcile this doctrine in our mind? We don't. It's actually that simple. The doctrine of election is in the Bible, so I believe it. Human volition is also in the Bible, so I believe that. Do I understand it? Nope. Do I understand how Jesus was fully God and fully man? Nope. Do I understand the Trinity? Nope. These are divine paradoxes that mere man simply has to accept on the basis that we are not God and our finite, flawed minds cannot comprehend all of His truths. The fact the Bible contains these paradoxes is, to me, a comfort. Had man written the Bible, he would have fixed them and made them perfectly clear. The fact that paradox exists proves even more that the Bible is God's own word! And so I don't intend to wax eloquent here on the doctrine of election. Perhaps, if we can bring ourselves to admit it, we could say that Christ's death, while sufficient for all was not ultimately efficacious for all. This is because not all men have or will respond to the call of God to Himself. Were all men to repent and accept Christ as their Savior, His atoning sacrifice would cover them all. But because the majority of men will reject the call of Christ, His death does not cover their sin. Instead, they will be judged at the Great White Throne and cast into an eternal lake of fire for their disobedience and unbelief. Oh look, I've begun to wax eloquent. Sorry.

Below are some verses that speak of God and Christ choosing us. If you ask me, they're some of the most comforting verses in all of Scripture!

For many are called, but few are chosen. Matthew 22:14

If you know these things, you are blessed if you do them. I do not speak of all of you I know the ones I have chosen; but it is that the Scripture may be fulfilled, 'HE WHO EATS MY BREAD HAS LIFTED UP HIS HEEL AGAINST ME.'From now on I am telling you before it comes to pass, so that when it does occur, you may believe that I am He. John 13:18

What then? What Israel is seeking, it has not obtained, but those who were chosen obtained it, and the rest were hardened [...] Romans 11:7

So, as those who have been chosen of God, holy and beloved, put on a heart of compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience; bearing with one another, and forgiving each other, whoever has a complaint against anyone; just as the Lord forgave you, so also should you. Colossians 3:11-12

But we should always give thanks to God for you, brethren beloved by the Lord, because God has chosen you from the beginning for salvation through sanctification by the Spirit and faith in the truth. 2 Thessalonians 2:13

But you are A CHOSEN RACE, A royal PRIESTHOOD, A HOLY NATION, A PEOPLE FOR God's OWN POSSESSION, so that you may proclaim the excellencies of Him who has called you out of darkness into His marvelous light[...] 1 Peter 2:9

These will wage war against the Lamb, and the Lamb will overcome them, because He is Lord of lords and King of kings, and those who are with Him are the called and chosen and faithful. Revelation 17:14

No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws him; and I will raise him up on the last day. John 6:44

And He will send forth His angels with A GREAT TRUMPET and THEY WILL GATHER TOGETHER His elect from the four winds, from one end of the sky to the other. Matthew 24:31 (note the use of "His elect")

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 brethren; and these whom He predestined, He also called; and these whom He called, He also justified; and these whom He justified, He also glorified. Romans 8:29-30

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, just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we would be holy and blameless before Him In love He predestined us to adoption as sons through Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the kind intention of His will, to the praise of the glory of His grace, which He freely bestowed on us in the Beloved. Ephesians 1:3-6

My devotional yesterday put this doctrine of election in a beautiful light for me so I thought I'd share it here. From C.H. Spurgeon's Morning by Morning:

John 15:19
I have chosen you out of the world.
Here is distinguishing grace and discriminating regard; for some are made the special objects of divine affection. Do not be afraid to dwell upon this high doctrine of election. When your mind is most heavy and depressed, you will find it to be a bottle of richest cordial. Those who doubt the doctrines of grace, or who cast them into the shade, miss the richest clusters of Eshcol; they lose the wines on the lees well refined, the fat things full of marrow. There is no balm in Gilead comparable to it. If the honey in Jonathan's wood when but touched enlightened the eyes, this is honey which will enlighten your heart to love and learn the mysteries of the kingdom of God. Eat, and fear not a surfeit; live upon this choice dainty, and fear not that it will be too delicate a diet. Meat from the King's table will hurt none of His courtiers. Desire to have your mind enlarged, that you may comprehend more and more the eternal, everlasting, discriminating love of God. When you have mounted as high as election, tarry on its sister mount, the covenant of grace. Covenant engagements are the munitions of stupendous rock behind which we lie entrenched; covenant engagements with the surety, Christ Jesus, are the quiet resting-places of trembling spirits.
"His oath, His covenant, His blood,
Support me in the raging flood;
When every earthly prop gives way,
This still is all my strength and stay."

If Jesus undertook to bring me to glory, and if the Father promised that He would give me to the Son to be a part of the infinite reward of the travail of His soul; then, my soul, till God Himself shall be unfaithful, till Jesus shall cease to be the truth, thou art safe. When David danced before the ark, he told Michal that election made him do so. Come, my soul, exult before the God of grace and leap for joy of heart.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Please keep it pithy (in other words, if your comment is long enough to be its own blog post, don't bother), pertinent (please don't go off-topic), and respectful (to the author, to the other readers, and to the subject of the post). If you can't do that, your comment will not be posted.

If you haven't already, please read the Comment Policy in its entirety.