How blessed is God! And what a blessing he is! He's the Father of our Master, Jesus Christ, and takes us to the high places of blessing in him. Long before he laid down earth's foundations, he had us in mind, had settled on us as the focus of his love, to be made whole and holy by his love. Long, long ago he decided to adopt us into his family through Jesus Christ. (What pleasure he took in planning this!) He wanted us to enter into the celebration of his lavish gift-giving by the hand of his beloved Son. Because of the sacrifice of the Messiah, his blood poured out on the altar of the Cross, we're a free people; free of penalties and punishments chalked up by all our misdeeds. And not just barely free, either. Abundantly free! He thought of everything, provided for everything we could possibly need, letting us in on the plans he took such delight in making. He set it all out before us in Christ, a long-range plan in which everything would be brought together and summed up in him, everything in deepest heaven, everything on planet earth. (from THE MESSAGE: The Bible in Contemporary Language © 2002 by Eugene H. Peterson. All rights reserved.)
I. What is the definition of "Election" as it pertains to the Redemption process?
By definition, “election” is "the gracious and free act of God in which he calls those who become part of His kingdom and are chosen to be special beneficiaries of His love and blessings". As a part of the redemptive process, “election" characterizes God’s saving activity.
According to Ephesians 1: 4, and 2: 10, election takes place through Jesus Christ as part of God’s overall plan or the redemption of the human race. Those of us who accepts Jesus Christ as our Messiah (Savior) are the "elect" of God. Just like grace, "election" is unmerited or undeserved by us in any way. Election is a “necessary” condition for salvation in the same manner as having faith in Jesus Christ is the “sufficient” condition to become one of the elect as well. The church was chosen or “elected” by God, and because this is so, all born again believer within the church are chosen by God to be his beloved. When a person accepts Jesus Christ as their Savior and Lord, the new believer has made a free choice (elected) to come out of the world of darkness (world system run by Satan) and live in the marvelous light of God. God’s calling of election compels the believer to turn away from their old life (the life of sin, death, and eternal damnation) and to accept the “new life”, that life in Jesus Christ which leads us to eternal life.
II. Election is God acting in Love
Election is an act of God’s divine love and as Ephesians 1: 5, 11 and Matthew 11:25-26 puts it this way: “The election to salvation is the good pleasure of God. Election is not predicated on faith or our repentance, rather, election is part of God’s sovereign grace toward man”. Ephesians 2:8-9 tells us that by grace are we saved through faith. There is nothing within us that can bring this about, because it is a gift from God, which means none of our “works” can even bring about salvation. The life of election is a life of righteousness in Jesus Christ. This “elected” life continues throughout all of eternity. God showed us through election that the love he has for man is an everlasting love. (Jeremiah 31: 3) All believers are chosen by God to become beloved brothers.This means that we are called to respect one another and to treat and view each other as being just as precious as we are ourselves in the eyes of God, as well as being deeply beloved by Him also. In John 13:34-35, Jesus told his disciples “A new commandment I give unto you, that you llove one another as I have loved you, also that you love one another. By this shall all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another”.
III. The Resulting Behavior(s) of an elected Person or a Church:
There are several results that will occur as evidence that either a church or an individual has the election of God resting within their lives:
A. First, there will be a reflection in their behavior. The members in that
church will act like the "beloved" people of God.
B. They will treat each other as beloved brothers.
A. The church will grow in holiness and godliness.
B. Their actions (Stewardship, fellowship, doctrinal beliefs, and works in (evangelism) will bring praise to God.
The doctrine of election is vital to a person’s understanding of salvation, grace, and the mercy of God. When that person begins to understand, they will come away with the knowing that election is interwoven in the following areas:
A. In the foreknowledge of God our Father
We were chosen by God the father before the foundation of the world to be his chosen people he planed for the glorious church. We had been elected (predestined) according to Ephesians 1: 4 to be blameless in his sight and above reproach before him in love. Christ’s blood had to be shed for our redemption, and even though Jesus Christ had not yet been crucified on the cross at Calvary prior to Genesis 1:27. God knew before he made man in his image and after his likeness in the Garden of Eden that man would be tempted in the garden by Satan. God knew that Adam and Eve would succumb to the deceptive tactic of Satan and disobey God’s command not to eat from the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. This act (their disobedience) would result in man loss of his perfect state (original obedient and innocent relationship) with God as well as the loss of his own innocence. Man’s status relation with God would now that of a sinner and he would have to realize by internal and public acknowledgement that he was indeed just that, a sinner. Because of the tragic fall in the garden, this fall would cause the sin nature of Adam to be passed throughout every generation of man from that time on according to Romans 5: 12.
Because election was necessary for the plan of salvation, John in Revelation 13: 8 said it in the foreknowledge of God, the Lamb of God (Jesus Christ) was slain before the foundation of the world. This passage clearly teaches that Jesus knew even before he was physically born in this world as a baby that he would be the sacrificial lamb for the redemption of the human race. God sent his only begotten son Jesus Christ to die on the cross for every man sin and allow for any man who would chose Jesus Christ as their Savior and Lord in faith to be chosen (elected) by God. Please note that God already knows who would accept Christ, as well as when this acceptance would take place in that individual’s life after their physical birth. Therefore, this means man’s elective process was already in place because man (individuals) over time would come to hear the gospel and have the opportunity to become the beloved of God by accepting Jesus Christ.
B. In the Sanctification of the Spirit
From the perspective of the Holy Spirit, the actual day and moment a person confesses with their mouth the Lord Jesus (Romans 10: 9) and believes in their heart that God raised him from the the Holy Ghost consecrates (purifies) the person’s soul to enable them to yield totally to the will of God acting in total obedience to the guidance of the Holy Ghost. We are also made in the righteousness of God through the work of Jesus Christ.1 Corinthians 1: 30 said that through the Holy Ghost, we are being made wise
through the wisdom (teaching) of God and the works of Jesus Christ. The implication is
progressively, we are being made more acquainted with the true character of Jesus Christ, God the Father, God’s laws, our own character and condition, as well as the great truth concerning eternal life and immortality beyond the grave and this scope of life.
In Proverbs 8, we can see at least these 3 things that the Holy Spirit imparts on us:
1. Jesus through the example of his own ministry has instructed us in the true knowledge of God.
In the Gospel of John, many time over Jesus told the people that all of the works that he did was not to represent him, but he was simply doing the work of God the Father because he had sent him to do this work. The work that Jesus himself spoke of was the work of salvation.
2. That Jesus by his word and spirit led us to see our true situation and made us wise unto salvation.
This means that he turned us away from the way of folly and compelled us to walk in the path of true wisdom.
3. Since Jesus is now the true source of wisdom to his beloved people, he enlightens our minds in perplexed times, guides us in the way of truth and leads us in the path of real knowledge.
C. In the sprinkling of the Blood of Jesus Christ
The “sprinkling” of the blood of Jesus means we are cleansed from sin and unrighteousness. Romans 1:5 said that we have received grace and apostleship for obedience to the faith for his name among all nations. This means everywhere we go, we represent Jesus Christ in all that we do, think, even say from our faith to our behavior.
This means that as far as Jesus Christ is concerned, we are saved the day he went up on Calvary’s Hill and shed his precious blood on that cross for the redemption of mankind. This reveals the design of how God chose us and renewed us by the Holy Spirit. It was through spiritual renewal that we might become totally obedient to God and live holy and sanctified lives.