The Election of Grace

—Our weekly article in the Northport Gazette and the West Alabama Gazette.

Watering the Tulips

04/20/2011

“Even so then, at this present time there is a remnant according to the election of grace” (Romans 11:5)

Election – what a scary thought these days.  Yet, theological giants of the past have boldly proclaimed this blessed truth.  Is there a remnant of believers in the world today?  Absolutely.  The majority of people today are not believers.  What is election according to?  Grace – the unmerited favor of our Sovereign Lord.  Today’s lesson is merely an elementary look at this grand and glorious subject.

“But 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” (2 Thessalonians 2:13).  Election took place before time began – from the beginning.  “He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world” (Ephesians 1:4).  Have you ever wondered why your response to the Gospel is so much different than your neighbor’s?  Here is the reason.  God has caused us to be different (I Corinthians 4:7).  This is the only Biblical explanation of why one vile sinner responds to the Gospel while another hardens his heart to it.

But, why would God elect one over the other?  All are sinful.  None are good of their own selves.  Why is one born in a predominantly lost community in the world while another is born to God-fearing Christian parents that take them to church?  Obviously, God is in control of all of these things.  But, why?  Concerning Jacob and Esau specifically, Paul was inspired to write, “…(for the children not yet being born, nor having done any good or evil, that the purpose of God according to election might stand, not of works but of Him who calls)” (Romans 9:11).  The reason you believe and your neighbor does not is because of the sovereign pleasure of the Creator Himself.  No other reason is given.  He elected you and as a result, you believe.  The only reason given as to why He elects one and not another is that He was pleased to do so.  It is plain, however, that it was not because of anything He foresaw any differently in you than anybody else.

All of this quickly raises an important question.  How can we know we have been elected?  This answer is plainly given in God’s Word.  I Thessalonians 1:4-5 says, knowing, beloved brethren, your election by God.  For our gospel did not come to you in word only, but also in power, and in the Holy Spirit and in much assurance”.  We know we were elected because we trust in Christ.  The Gospel (empowered by the Holy Spirit) made a change in our lives.  This can only happen when God causes a change for man in his natural state would never receive the things of the Spirit of God (I Corinthians 2:14).

Child of God, perhaps you’ve never considered this before.  Maybe you realize that there was a day that the message of the cross meant more to you than it had in the past, but, you didn’t know why.  I have security for you today.  “He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ” (Philippians 1:6).  God began the work of salvation in you.  Thank Him for your faith today.  Surely, it too is a gift of God (Ephesians 2:8).

Watering the Tulips is brought to you by Sovereign Grace Baptist Church in Northport, AL.  For more information, please visit www.sovereigngrace.net“Your app to the Gospel” is available for download in the iTunes app store and the Android market.  Download it today.

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