God’s Word says believers were chosen by God, but for what reason and purpose?
The main question I have about why God had chosen me is, “Why?” I know there was nothing in particular that God saw in me and made that decision based upon that. The only reason I can think of was that God loved me. Even here, there is no human explanation for God sending His Son to die for me; someone who was an ungodly, wicked enemy of His (Rom 5:6-10), and He loved me long before I ever loved Him (1 John4:19-21). Despite this, the Apostle Paul tells us that God “has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places, even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him. In love” (Eph 1:3-4). More than once we read that God chose us in love (Rom 5; Eph 1). It was not that we were lovely, but rather, it was that He loved us first. Jesus told the disciples, “You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit and that your fruit should abide, so that whatever you ask the Father in my name, he may give it to you” (John 15:16). Besides love, God chose us to bear fruit that would give God glory (John15:8). Anyone that’s been called by God has been called to glory Him. That is a major reason that God created us.
The Bible gives us some good ideas about what we’ll be doing in the Kingdom. For example, the Apostle Peter wrote, “But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light” (1 Pet 2:9). The Apostle John writes to the church, “To him who loves us and has freed us from our sins by his blood and made us a kingdom, priests to his God and Father, to him be glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen” (Rev 1:5b-6). He has made some to be rulers, kings, and priests in the kingdom. Scripture tells us that only Jesus Christ is worthy “to take the scroll and to open its seals, for you were slain, and by your blood you ransomed people for God from every tribe and language and people and nation” (Rev 5:9), so it will be that the Lord “made them a kingdom and priests to our God, and they shall reign on the earth” (Rev 5:10). Notice it was God’s doing, and not theirs, but they are destined to be part of the rule or reign of Christ, but of course, everyone will be under the authority of Christ. Jesus gives us an idea of stewardship, stating that someone that’s being faithful in little, will mean they can be trusted with much, so some will “have authority over ten cities” (Luke 19:17c), while others will “be over five cities” (Luke 19:19c). What this exactly looks like in the kingdom, we cannot say. Jesus Himself is preparing these things now (John 14:3), but the Apostle John wrote that he “saw thrones, and seated on them were those to whom the authority to judge was committed. Also I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded for the testimony of Jesus and for the word of God, and those who had not worshiped the beast or its image and had not received its mark on their foreheads or their hands. They came to life and reigned with Christ for a thousand years” (Rev 20:4). Scripture tells us that believers will judge angels, but which angels Scripture refers to, I am not sure (1 Cor 6:3). Perhaps these are fallen angels, or demons. Otherwise, all judgment will be Christ’s.
The idea of being chosen by God is not a new one. God said of ancient Israel, “For you are a people holy to the Lord your God, and the Lord has chosen you to be a people for his treasured possession, out of all the peoples who are on the face of the earth” (Duet 14:2). God didn’t call them because they were the greatest or largest, but only out of His promise to Abraham. Of course Israel failed in their calling, but the Apostle Paul wrote that God “had set me apart before I was born, and who called me by his grace, was pleased to reveal his Son to me, in order that I might preach him among the Gentiles, I did not immediately consult with anyone” (Gal 1:15-16), so Scripture teaches us that “No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him. And I will raise him up on the last day” (John 6:44). Saul would have never chosen the Way without divine intervention (Acts 9).
Called and Justified
We also know that God has chosen some who have not yet been called, and that means He may use us as a means to bring them to Christ. It is not we who save others, but God alone saves, however, God does gives us the great privilege to be used as a means to save some. Paul writes, “For those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. And those whom he predestined he also called, and those whom he called he also justified, and those whom he justified he also glorified” (Rom 8:29-30). God has predestined some to be saved, so we need not be concerned if we don’t reach everyone with the gospel. We are simply told to “go” and share Christ. God is the Lord of the Harvest, but we are chosen by God; taken out of the darkness, and brought into the Light. Then, we’re called to go back into the darkness to bring others into the Light. It is not up to us to save anyone. Jesus says, “All that the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never cast out” (John 6:37), not all we gather and bring to Christ.
When Abram was called by God, God told him to “Go from your country and your kindred and your father’s house to the land that I will show you” (Gen 12:1), “So Abram went, as the Lord had told him” (Gen 12:4a). By Abram obeying God, he showed he believed God, and so Abram “believed the Lord, and he counted it to him as righteousness” (Gen 15:6). God choose Abram, but Abram choose to believe, but even here, God had to make Himself known to Abram in order for Abram to know Him. Has your name “been written before the foundation of the world in the book of life of the Lamb who was slain” (Rev 13:8)? If God has brought you to repentance (Acts 5:31, 11:18; 2 Tim2:24-26) and faith in Christ (Mark 1:14-15), you have been chosen by God. If you don’t care, you may not be chosen…or God has not yet called you to Christ…but if you care and wonder if you’ve been chosen by God, you’ll know by the fruits you produce, because these differing fruits show the radically different roots (Eph 5:19-25).
Article by Jack Wellman
Jack Wellman is a Pastor and Prison Minister in the State of Kansas. Jack is also a writer at Christian Quotes and Senior Writer at What Christians Want To Know whose mission is to equip, encourage, and energize Christians and to address questions about the believer’s daily walk with God and the Bible. You can follow Jack on Google Plus or check out his book Teaching Children the Gospel available on Amazon.