God’s Chosen Few…

The most hated doctrine of the Bible is the doctrine of God’s sovereignty.  The number one argument against the doctrine of election is that it is “unfair” for God to exercise His sovereignty. People who don’t understand the sovereignty of God say “it’s unfair for God to choose some and not others.”  Let’s see what the Bible says about us questioning the will of God.

 Romans 9:14What shall we say then? There is no injustice with God, is there? May it never be! 15For He says to Moses, “I WILL HAVE MERCY ON WHOM I HAVE MERCY, AND I WILL HAVE COMPASSION ON WHOM I HAVE COMPASSION.” 16So then it does not depend on the man who wills or the man who runs, but on God who has mercy. 17For the Scripture says to Pharaoh, “FOR THIS VERY PURPOSE I RAISED YOU UP, TO DEMONSTRATE MY POWER IN YOU, AND THAT MY NAME MIGHT BE PROCLAIMED THROUGHOUT THE WHOLE EARTH.” 18So then He has mercy on whom He desires, and He hardens whom He desires.  19You will say to me then, “Why does He still find fault? For who resists His will?” 20On the contrary, who are you, O man, who answers back to God? The thing molded will not say to the molder, “Why did you make me like this,” will it? 21Or does not the potter have a right over the clay, to make from the same lump one vessel for honorable use and another for common use? 22What if God, although willing to demonstrate His wrath and to make His power known, endured with much patience vessels of wrath prepared for destruction? 23And He did so to make known the riches of His glory upon vessels of mercy, which He prepared beforehand for glory, 24even us, whom He also called, not from among Jews only, but also from among Gentiles.

Beloved, who are we to question how JUST God is? I will propose that we have no right to question the will of God. What do we know about justice? When we question the doctrine of election we are indeed saying that we know what “just” is, God doesn’t. Do you truly want justice? If God would have exercised complete justice  and  chosen to withhold mercy and grace to His elect, where would you be spending eternity? Hell for all of us is true justice my friend. That goes to show how skewed and backwards our view of justice is.  To many believers justice is “God wanting all to be saved by decree or saving all humans beings” and injustice is for God to “elect some to be recipients of His mercy and grace while allowing others to end up in hell.” Is this not backwards? To the contrary, justice would be exercised fully if all human beings spent eternity in hell for their utter depravity. “Injustice/Unfairness” (notice the quotation marks because a more accurate term would be grace, getting what you do not deserve), is that the elect or predestined one receive mercy (not getting what you deserve) instead of the punishment due from Almighty God.  Why would I call this injustice? If we were in a court of law, having violated any of the 10 commandments we (all) would be found guilty before the Judge (God). The judge (God) through the law sets the standard all must adhere to and as advocate of justice, He would have to condemn us to death for our transgressions as the law states (Rom 6:23 For the wages of sin is death).  If the judge (God) would let any of us go without paying the penalty, He would be unjust and an abomination himself for allowing the guilty free without payment. There would be no mercy, for justice MUST be fulfilled. God can’t be unjust, thus out of his sovereign will and choice predestined a few unto salvation and provided a way for Him to carry out justice while extending mercy and grace to underserving sinners through the sacrifice of our Lord, Jesus Christ.  Yet, you would have to agree with me that it is unfair that we are saved. We don’t deserve it and could do nothing to  merit such unfathomable gift. Not that God was being unfair in saving us but that the gift of salvation in and out of itself is not what we deserve. Giving us what we deserve would be justice in its fullness. At the cross justice and mercy were reconciled and grace extended to those predestined before the foundation of the world. What a glorious God we serve!

“God reserves to himself the absolute sovereign right to pardon whom He will. To the rest He gives justice, not one person in this universe deserves the grace of God.” RC Sproul

People reject the doctrine of election mainly because of pride. They want to have some role or play a part in their salvation. They want the feeling of “ I did something right, I repented, I had enough faith, etc.” All of these thoughts start with the letter “I”. Self centeredness and pride are at the core of the rejection of the doctrine of election.

Righteousness and justice is the foundation of the throne of God. See, you have stepped way out of bounds when you think you have the right and ability to decide what is “just” for God to do. Election is “just” because God wills it. Something is “just” because God wills it, not the other way around. God is the ONLY one who is qualified to set the measure of true justice. There are questions about this doctrine that we will never have answers to until’ we get home for only God knows his ways. Our finite mind simply cannot fully comprehend an infinite God.  Isaiah 55:8“For My thoughts are not your thoughts, Nor are your ways My ways,” declares the LORD. 9“For as the heavens are higher than the earth, So are My ways higher than your ways And My thoughts than your thoughts.

The doctrine of election is beautifully displayed with the Jewish people, Israel. Did the Jewish people choose God or did God choose the Jewish nation? Deut 7:6 “For you are a holy people to the LORD your God; the LORD your God has chosen you to be a people for His own possession out of all the peoples who are on the face of the earth.

Let’s look at several scriptures speaking on the subject…

1 Pet 1:1 Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ, To those who are elect exiles of the dispersion in Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia,.  In the Greek it says “to chosen strangers” .

The word chosen is eklektos (Strong’s 1588). Definition: chosen out, elect, choice, select, sometimes as subst: of those chosen out by God for the rendering of special service to Him (of the Hebrew race, particular Hebrews, the Messiah, and the Christians).  Cognate: 1588 eklektós (an adjective, derived from 1586 /eklégomai, “to select, choose,” also used as a substantive/noun) – properly, selected (chosen from, out of), especially as a deeply personal choice – literally “chosen, out of a personal preference (intention).” See 1586 (eklegomai).

These are other verses that use the word eklektos. Matt 24:22, Matt 24:24, Matt 24:31, Rom 8:33, Luke 18:7 and Col 3:12. Look over those verses and translate it to the appropriate definition above and you have just exercised proper hermeneutics to that part of the text. J When you translate the verse by substituting “chosen or elect” with the definition above, read the verses before and after in order to keep it in context, the chapter and book. Ask yourself who was this written to? What did God mean? How does this apply to my life? You have just carried out proper exegesis of the verse. J Proper interpretation of the word must be done in context and systematically if we’re to correctly study the word of God.

Paul writes, 2 Tim 2:10 “For this reason I endure all things for the sake of those who are chosen, so that they also may obtain the salvation which is in Christ Jesus and with it eternal glory.” Again the word chosen is the word eklektos in Greek.

You are a Christian because you are chosen by God. Just like Israel was chosen, Christians are chosen by God. Acts 15:14 “Simeon has declared how God at the first did visit the Gentiles, to take out of them a people for his name.” God plan was to choose or take out a people for himself from among the gentiles. Who did the choosing? God. From among whom did He choose? Gentiles. Why did He choose them in particular? We don’t know but we do not it was for Himself.

This is a picture of the doctrine of election in the book of Matthew. Matt 24:1“For the kingdom of heaven is like a landowner who went out early in the morning to hire men to work in his vineyard. 2He agreed to pay them a denarius for the day and sent them into his vineyard. 3“About the third hour he went out and saw others standing in the marketplace doing nothing. 4He told them, ‘You also go and work in my vineyard, and I will pay you whatever is right.’ 5So they went.“He went out again about the sixth hour and the ninth hour and did the same thing. 6About the eleventh hour he went out and found still others standing around. He asked them, ‘Why have you been standing here all day long doing nothing?’ 7“‘Because no one has hired us,’ they answered.“He said to them, ‘You also go and work in my vineyard.’ 8“When evening came, the owner of the vineyard said to his foreman, ‘Call the workers and pay them their wages, beginning with the last ones hired and going on to the first.’ 9“The workers who were hired about the eleventh hour came and each received a denarius. 10So when those came who were hired first, they expected to receive more. But each one of them also received a denarius. 11When they received it, they began to grumble against the landowner. 12‘These men who were hired last worked only one hour,’ they said, ‘and you have made them equal to us who have borne the burden of the work and the heat of the day.’ 13“But he answered one of them, ‘Friend, I am not being unfair to you. Didn’t you agree to work for a denarius? 14Take your pay and go. I want to give the man who was hired last the same as I gave you. 15Don’t I have the right to do what I want with my own money? Or are you envious because I am generous?’ 16“So the last will be first, and the first will be last.” Does God not have the right to do what He pleases? Or must we now approve of what we fell God should or shouldn’t do? Ponder upon that friend.

John 15:16 “You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit—fruit that will last. Then the Father will give you whatever you ask in my name.” Here Jesus speaks to the apostles saying “you did not choose me”, wait a minute! What do you mean, they had to choose to believe and follow Christ did they not? The answer is No. They were given by God to Christ ( see John 17:9), chosen by God and Christ, granted faith to follow Christ or else they wouldn’t have believed and gifted irresistible grace to which they simply couldn’t refuse the call. They in no way choose to follow Christ but Christ choose them to follow Him. What a beautiful picture.

Acts 14:38 “When the Gentiles heard this, they began rejoicing and glorifying the word of the Lord; and as many as had been appointed to eternal life believed.” Appointed – tetagmenoi in Greek (Strong’s 5021) meaning to draw up in order, arrange, determine, appoint.  Who were appointed? The gentiles. What were they appointed to? Eternal life. Did they believe first and thus became “Christians” or were they appointed first and because of this they believed?

Matt 22:14 “For many are called, but few are chosen.”

Matthew 22:14 Greek Study Bible (Apostolic / Interlinear)

πολλοὶ γὰρ εἰσιν κλητοί, ὀλίγοι δὲ ἐκλεκτοί.

KJV with Strong’s
For many are called but few are chosen


Greek

Transliteration

Strong’s

Morphology

English

πολλοὶ

polloi

4183

A-NPM

many

γὰρ

gar

1063

CONJ

For

εἰσιν

eisin

1526

V-PAI-3P

are

κλητοί

klētoi

2822

A-NPM

called

ὀλίγοι

oligoi

3641

A-NPM

few

δὲ

de

1161

CONJ

but

ἐκλεκτοί

eklektoi

1588

A-NPM

chosen

 

4183. polus


much, many

Original Word: πολύς, πολλή, πολύ
Part of Speech: Adjective
Transliteration: polus
Phonetic Spelling: (pol-oos’)
Short Definition: much, many, often
Definition: much, many; often.

4183 polýsmany (high in number); multitudinous, plenteous, “much”; “great” in amount (extent).

 

2822. klétos


called

Original Word: κλητός, ή, όν
Part of Speech: Adjective
Transliteration: klétos
Phonetic Spelling: (klay-tos’)
Short Definition: called, summoned
Definition: called, invited, summoned by God to an office or to salvation.

Cognate: 2822 klētós – literally, “called” (derived from 2564/kaleō, “to call, summon”). See 2821 (klēsis).

 

3641. oligos


few, little, small

Original Word: ὀλίγος, η, ον
Part of Speech: Adjective; Adverb
Transliteration: oligos
Phonetic Spelling: (ol-ee’-gos)
Short Definition: small, brief, few, soon
Definition: (a) especially in plur: few, (b) in sing: small; hence, of time: short, of degree: light, slight, little.

 

1588. eklektos


select, by impl. favorite

Original Word: ἐκλεκτός, ή, όν
Part of Speech: Adjective
Transliteration: eklektos
Phonetic Spelling: (ek-lek-tos’)
Short Definition: chosen, elect, choice, select
Definition: chosen out, elect, choice, select, sometimes as subst: of those chosen out by God for the rendering of special service to Him (of the Hebrew race, particular Hebrews, the Messiah, and the Christians).

 

If we were to translate this it would say… A high number (many) are invited but a small number are the elect. This goes hand in hand with Matt 7:14 “For the gate is small and the way is narrow that leads to life, and there are few who find it.” The word few in this verse if the same word in Matt 22:14. A small/little amount of people find it.

Romans 11:5 “In the same way then, there has also come to be at the present time a remnant according to God’s gracious choice.” The word choice is ekogen in Greek (String’s 1589) meaning a divine selection, a choosing out, selecting, choice by God.

These are other passages (summarized) you can study on election.

1 Cor 1:9 “God, who has called you into fellowship with his Son Jesus Christ our Lord, is faithful.”

1 Thess 1:4 ~ Chose you.

2 Thess 2:13 ~ Chosen from the beginning.

2 Tim 1:9 ~ Saved us and called us before time began.

Rev 13:8 ~ Except those who were written in the book before the foundation of the world.

Rev 17:8 ~  Written before the foundation of the world.

Rev 17:14 ~ Chosen

Rev 20 ~ Names in the book before the foundation of the world.

Luke 4:25-27 ~ God’s selection. The respectable leaders of Israel despised the doctrine of election especially when they heard they weren’t. For it was no coincidence that God had chosen a gentile in this story.

Eph 1:11 “In him we were also chosen, having been predestined (proorizo) according to the plan of him who works out everything in conformity with the purpose of his will,”

4309. proorizó

to predetermine, foreordain

Original Word: προορίζω
Part of Speech: Verb
Transliteration: proorizó
Phonetic Spelling: (pro-or-id’-zo)
Short Definition: I foreordain, predetermine
Definition: I foreordain, predetermine, mark out beforehand.

In my opinion this is the best passage in the NT concerning the doctrine of election.

Eph 1:3-5 “Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ. 4For he chose (eklego) us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight. In love 5hec predestined us to be adopted as his sons through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will”  When did God choose us? Before the creation of the world. What is the purpose for which God choose us? To be holy and blameless in His sight. How are we to do this? Through Him (Christ).

1586. eklegó

to select

Original Word: ἐκλέγομαι
Part of Speech: Verb
Transliteration: eklegó
Phonetic Spelling: (ek-leg’-om-ahee)
Short Definition: I choose, elect
Definition: I pick out for myself, choose, elect, select.

1586 eklégomai (from 1537 /ek, “out of” and 3004 /légō, “speaking to a conclusion”) – properly, to select (choose) out of, by a highly deliberate choice (i.e. real heart-preference) with a definite outcome (as with the destination of divine selection for salvation).

The doctrine of election teaches us 2 things.

1- God is in charge of all things.

2- He is so gracious to us who can’t earn it, to spend eternity worshipping Him.

God has chosen the elect from eternity past. As long as God has existed the elect have been in God’s mind. Salvation doesn’t depend on ones will but the sovereign mercy of God.

 

About Disciple of Christ, Wife, Mommy of 5 blessings & NM Top Earner.

As a wife, homeschooling stay at home mom of 5 beautiful blessings, taxi, chef, doctor, philosopher etc, my life is full of adventures everyday. Most of the adventures lead me to find another lost piece of my identity concealed deep within my heart. I have always felt that there was more to life than just “making it through”. After 5 little ones (4 under 4 & in diapers), I lost all the pieces I had found along the way. I was left with thinking my identity was being a wife and mom. “This can’t be all there is to me!”, I reasoned. Who am I? What’s in my heart? Why do I thrive around beauty and my heart leaps for joy when experiencing something as simple as a sunset. A feeling like I am free, inside. My heart can breathe again as if it had been holding its oxygen all along. Did God make me like this, I wondered? I felt guilty for longing to let my heart be free once again. After all the picture we have of a “perfect” woman is one that is ALWAYS busy! Always volunteering, always giving of herself with never once a thought of the state of her inner being. That is why we lose our hearts. Vulnerability is not welcomed anywhere. Femininity in its purest form is frowned upon. Why? Because women are supposed to be tough! The kind of tough that is just wrong. We are trained to hide our vulnerability, along with our femininity, very early in life. The wounds we have received as little girls leave us reacting as women like that wounded little girl would: we retreat, we regress. The message we received? You can’t trust anyone! Your femininity and vulnerability is a weakness. Most of us walk through life “playing” or pretending to be someone we’re truly not. As adults, we make choices based on how we were programmed when we were young. The real us hides somewhere inside, waiting to be rescued. Like a wounded animal hiding from its master, wanting to trust and soar again, but so afraid of the uncertainty that awaits. The risk is not worth it, we think to ourselves. To be quite honest most of you have not found a safe place to be yourselves. Embarking on a quest to find the real you takes courage. God created you in His image. Adam bears the image of a warrior God. A man is supposed to tell the world, on God’s behalf, He will come through for you. Eve bears the image of a captivating God and her heart is made to show His beauty. A woman is supposed to tell the world, everything is ok. She is that calm & quiet spirit. Safety; a place of refuge and healing beauty. This is what our hearts long for; Eden. The place for which we were created. The place in our hearts we know we belong. I am just a simple girl on a quest to finding my heart. Not the way I was “shaped” by the world but the way God created me. I pray that this journey will be encouraging and uplifting to others. I am going on an adventure and invite you to come with me! I am very transparent because that is what this world needs! With all my love, Laire

Posted on July 1, 2011, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

  1. Hi…Where do I even start with you? LOL First of all the Talmud is nothing more than the oral law passed down from rabbinic discussions concerning the law. Which means NOTHING! It’s like me giving a commentary on the bible…is that THE BIBLE? No, it’s just what I think about it or my philosophy on it if I am not directly quoting scripture. With that said no one that knows my theology will ever accuse me of not being a “real christian”. Either you like it or not Jews are chosen by God. You don’t have to approve it. I could care less what the talmud says. I live by the Bible. The word of God not what man thinks of God!
    Blessed night!

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