Contend Earnestly: Ordo Salutis - Election - Part Two

Friday, June 01, 2007

Ordo Salutis - Election - Part Two

The importance of the word: Predestine

When you think of the word predestine what do you think of? The word means exactly what we would take it to mean, the Greek word means “to decide beforehand or predetermine. In the biblical sense it comes with the connotation as God decreeing from eternity past.” There is no way around this word that is used many times in the New Testament. Take a look at these verses and the variety of ways the term is used:

Acts 4:28; Romans 8:29,30, 1 Cor 2:7; Eph 1:5,11

We can see especially in Ephesians that God predetermined His elect to obtain His inheritance, Why or for what cause? For the kind intention of His will. We also see this when David speaks to God in Psalm 139:1-16

So we, see that when we are told that we are predestined by God, that is exactly what is meant, the all sovereign Creator predestines His own, His elect to heaven.

The Importance of the words: Choose and Elect

So, now after seeing the importance of the words foreknow and predestine we come back to the words choose and elect. When God speaks of choosing a people He does it because of His will not ours. We can actually see this all through the Bible. How does God choose people? Does He choose them because they are seeking Him or do they get chosen by the mere fact that God wants to use them? Think of this…

The choosing of Abraham: Genesis 12 says nothing of why He chose Abram He just chose. What is interesting is that after Abram is chosen, the first action after his choosing is a sinful one! God told him to go forth from his relatives and he took Lot and his wife. I think this just shows once again that God chooses weak vessels, gives them faith and uses them for His glory. God does not look to who is strong in faith and hope they will choose Him, that is backwards.

Also, look at others that were chosen:

The choosing of the nation of Israel: Deut 7:6
The choosing of Moses: Exodus 3,4
The choosing of Gideon: Judges 6-8 (Oh Valient Warrior!) where was Gideon at this time? Hiding
The choosing of Jeremiah: Jeremiah 1
The choosing of David: 1 Samuel 16
The choosing of the twelve apostles: Luke 6 (John 15:16; You didn’t choose me; I chose you!)
The choosing of Saul: Acts 9

The Greek word translated “chosen” is eklektos, from the verb kaleo, “to call,” and the preposition ek, “out.” Literally, it means “the called-out ones.” The term is often used in the New Testament as a synonym for Christians (e.g., Col. 3:12; 2 Tim. 2:10; Titus 1:1). The expression “called-out ones” emphasizes that we who are saved are redeemed because of God’s choice, not our own. Jesus told His disciples, “You did not choose Me, but I chose you” (John 15:16). In other words, if you are a Christian, it is ultimately because you were chosen by God Himself, not because of anything you did to get yourself into the Kingdom of God
John MacArthur

So, the words chosen ones or the elect are actually the exact same words in the
Greek and it is referred to 24 times in the New Testament. There is no way
around these simple to understand words. We have been chosen by the all
sovereign God to our position as His chosen people.

1 Peter 2:9 speaks to this specifically:
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;

So when we see this in Colossians 3:12 that we are chosen by God, that is exactly what it means. We did nothing to earn this election, we did nothing to earn this choosing, but He chose us out of the kind intention of His will, not ours.


We have seen that sometimes our earthly view that seems correct is actually just the opposite. We think we chose God but in 1 John 4 it tells us that we love, because He first loved us. Without God foreknowing us, choosing and predestining us, calling us, we would still be lost
and without hope. But, if you believe in Jesus Christ and you believe that He God’s Son who died on the cross and rose again, and He alone is your Lord, than that is shown as proof of your election, because only those who know Christ have been chosen. Just as it says in John 10:26 but you do not believe because you are not my sheep. Notice, Jesus does not say that because you don’t believe you are not my sheep but those who are not called, who are not chosen by God cannot believe. They cannot be Christ’s sheep.

When I was coming to Christ, I thought I was doing it all myself, and though I sought the Lord earnestly, I had no idea the Lord was seeking me.… [Then] the thought struck me, How did you come to be a Christian? I sought the Lord. But how did you come to seek the Lord? The truth flashed across my mind in a moment—I should not have sought Him unless there had been some previous influence on my mind to make me seek Him.… I saw that God was at the bottom of it all, and that He was the Author of my faith, and so the whole doctrine of grace opened up to me.… I desire to make this constant confession, “I ascribe my change wholly to God.”

Charles Spurgeon


Bob said...

I find it interesting that so few comments have been generated on this series.
I have found the most hated biblical concepts to be election, predestination, and repentance. These usually create a fury such as the Falwell video of 4/13/07.

luvvom said...

Happy Father's Day and have a blessed Lord's Day!

Anonymous said...

Good stuff Seth. We love
God only because He first loves us.

David McCrory

Barry said...

Seth / Justin, guys, where have you been. The blog site is getting stale dudes. I love your insight. Keep up the contending earnestly for the gospel for which you've been called.

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