Summary: I. Example: We are chosen for salvation. II. Explanation of predestination: Three things to keep in focus: 1. God’s perfect sight. 2. The power of God’s sovereignty. 3. The paradox of salvation. III. Example: We are chosen as God’s children.
Christians, We Are Chosen by God
1 Peter 1:1-2; 2 Thess 2:13; Rom 9:10-26; Eph 1:3-7
Grayson Baptist Church - Oct. 28, 2012
*Remember playing games as a kid, when they had to choose teams? Nobody wanted to be chosen last. It’s good to be chosen, and it is especially good to be chosen by God.
*As Christians, we are chosen by God. And last week in 1 Peter, we started exploring what this means.
I. For example: We are chosen for salvation.
*We saw this truth in 1 Peter 1, where the Apostle opened by saying that Christians, we are “elect.” Please listen again in vs. 1&2:
1. Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ, to the pilgrims of the Dispersion in Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia,
2. elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father. . .
*All Old Testament believers and all Christians are part of the “elect.” God uses this same word 23 times in the New Testament, and it simply means “picked out” or “chosen” by God.
*Most of the time this word is translated as “elect.” But sometimes it is translated as “chosen,” like in Matt 22:14, where Jesus said: “Many are called, but few are chosen.”
*And this is just one of the Greek words that are translated as “chosen.” We also find 23 more examples of “chosen” that come from other Greek words.
*For example, in 2 Thess 2:13, the Apostle Paul said this to those Christians:
13. We are bound to give thanks to God always for you, brethren beloved by the Lord, because God from the beginning chose you for salvation through sanctification by the Spirit and belief in the truth.
*Christians, God chose you from the beginning for salvation. It’s the same truth Peter stressed when he said we are “elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father. . .” When we believe in the truth, when we choose to receive Jesus as our Lord and Savior, then at some point we will look back and see that God chose us first.
*Before the beginning of time, God looked into the future, and saw you, and chose you to obtain His Salvation. This means that when Jesus Christ was on the cross, we really were on His mind.
II. Christians, we are chosen by God for salvation. Now, any time we look into Scriptures like these, the question of predestination comes up.
*We could spend a long time talking about predestination, because it opens a can of worms that has been debated for hundreds of years:
-I’m talking about the issues of eternal security and limited atonement.
-The issues of God’s sovereignty and man’s free will.
*The two basic schools of thought are called Calvinism and Arminianism. These names come from two theologians who lived about 500 years ago: John Calvin and Jacobus Arminius.
*But these two labels are not the bottom line.
-The bottom line is this: What does the Word of God say?
*And as we look into the Word of God tonight, there are 3 things to keep in focus:
-God’s perfect sight.
-The power of God’s sovereignty.
-And the paradox of salvation.
1. Last week we focused on God’s perfect sight.
*God really does see the end from the beginning. In Isaiah 46:9-10, God says:
9. Remember the former things of old: for I am God, and there is none else; I am God, and there is none like me,
10. Declaring the end from the beginning, and from ancient times the things that are not yet done, saying, My counsel shall stand, and I will do all my pleasure:
*As human beings in this world, we are perpetually stuck in a moment of time.
-But God is not like us.
-He is bigger than time.
-In fact, God created time.
*And He sees the end from the beginning, so He foreknew who was going to be saved. We also see this truth in Romans 8:28-31, where Paul said:
28. We know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.
29. For whom He foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the firstborn among many brethren.
30. Moreover whom He predestined, these He also called; whom He called, these He also justified; and whom He justified, these He also glorified.
31. What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us?
*When it comes to predestination, we need to focus on God’s perfect sight.
2. But also focus on the power of God’s sovereignty.
*This is the source of the argument between Arminianism and Calvinism: The issue of man’s free will vs. the sovereignty of God.