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God’s Chosen People

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God’s Chosen People

August 8, 2007

“Put on then, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassion, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience”

Col 3:12

1. “Put on then” As he has defined some parts of the old man, so he now also enumerates some parts of the new. “Then” says he, “will it appear that ye are renewed by Christ, when you are merciful and kind. For these are the effects and evidences of renovation.”

2. As God’s chosen people. “As elect ones of God.” Just as with Paul we are called to Christ and chosen out of the world as Paul says that he is. “a servant of God and an apostle of Jesus Christ, for the sake of the faith of God’s elect and their knowledge of the truth, which accords with godliness” Titus 1:1

3. The Greek word eklekton has been translated from Greek and Latin into English as the word “elect.” In the Bible, God’s people (the “elect”) are chosen by God for a specific purpose or destiny. No one can claim to be chosen by God because of his or her heritage or good works. God freely chooses to save whomever he wills.

“For he says to Moses, “I will have mercy on whom I have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I have compassion.” So then it depends not on human will or exertion, but on God, who has mercy” Rom 9:15-16

4. The doctrine of election teaches that it is God’s sovereign choice to save us by his goodness and mercy and not by our own merit.

“but share in suffering for the gospel by the power of God, who saved us and called us to a holy calling, not because of our works but because of his own purpose and grace, which he gave us in Christ Jesus before the ages began” 2 Timothy 1:8-9

“he saved us, not because of works done by us in righteousness but according to his own mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewal of the Holy Spirit” Titus 3:5

5. Paul speaks of an individual Christian as “elect” or “chosen.” as he says “Greet Rufus, chosen in the Lord” (Rom 16:13) and “Therefore I endure everything for the sake of the elect, that they also may obtain the salvation that is in Christ Jesus with eternal glory.” 2 Tim 2:10 and Peter also says “Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ, [and I am writing this epistle] “To those who are elect exiles of the dispersion in Pontus, [etc]” 1 Peter 1:1

6. Ephesians 1:4 affirms that “he chose us in him [Christ] before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him. In love [and] he predestined us for adoption through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will” Eph 1:4-5

7. Paul says that the Thessalonians were “chosen as the firstfruits to be saved” and were “called through the gospel.”

“But we ought always to give thanks to God for you, brothers beloved by the Lord, because God chose you as the firstfruits to be saved, through sanctification by the Spirit and belief in the truth.” 1 Thessalonians 2:13

8. Paul tells the Corinthian believers that they have no room to claim anything for themselves because they did not choose but instead God is the one who chooses so that “no human being might boast in the presence of God” and he reminds us that “He is the source of your life in Christ Jesus.”

“For consider your calling, brothers: not many of you were wise according to worldly standards, not many were powerful, not many were of noble birth. But God chose what is foolish in the world to shame the wise; God chose what is weak in the world to shame the strong; God chose what is low and despised in the world, even things that are not, to bring to nothing things that are, so that no human being might boast in the presence of God. He is the source of your life in Christ Jesus,...” 1 Cor 1:26-30a

9. The doctrine of election crushes human pride, exalts God, produces joy and gratitude to the Lord, grants eternal privileges and assurance, promotes holiness, and makes one bold and courageous, but Peter reminds us to not be puffed up with pride and to “make our calling and election sure” and Paul says “Examine yourselves, to see whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Is it really Jesus Christ is in you?” 2 Cor 13:5

“Examine yourselves, to see whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Or do you not realize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you? —unless indeed you fail to meet the test!” 2 Cor 13:5

“Therefore, brothers, be all the more diligent to make your calling and election sure, for if you practice these qualities you will never fall” 2 Peter 1:10

GOD’S CHOSEN PEOPLE

The concept of divine election has at times divided the Christian church. Calvinists strongly teach the idea that God chooses some people, who then become Christians. Wesleyans strongly teach the idea that all people are capable of choosing Christ, and when they do, God chooses them.

It’s a question of whose choice comes first. The spiritual deadness of all people apart from Christ argues that God must choose first. Democratic fairness argues that a huge benefit like eternal life must be equally available to anyone who freely says yes to God. Solving this conundrum requires much study. On a much simpler level, personal and direct, all Christians should find common ground with this child’s understanding of election: “Sarah, who saves you?”

“Jesus saves me, Daddy.”

“Can you help Jesus save you, Sarah?”

“I don’t think so, Daddy. Jesus saves me all by himself.”*

*Barton, Bruce B. ; Comfort, Philip Wesley: Philippians, Colossians, Philemon. Wheaton, Ill. : Tyndale House Publishers, 1995 (Life Application Bible)

GracePointe Baptist Church

2209 N Post Road

Oklahoma City, OK 73141

Phone: (405) 769-5050

http://www.gracepointeonline.com

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