This past week, the United States of America held a general election, whereby we chose many of our leaders. To elect is simply to make a selection among possible choices. Did you know that the Bible says a great deal about election? In fact, God Himself elects. His election is in some ways similar to our election, and in other ways much different. Consider the following biblical facts:
- God elects those He will save. Repeatedly, the Bible refers to those who are saved as the “chosen” or “elect” (Luke 18:1-7; 2 Timothy 2:10; Titus 1:1; 1 Peter 2:4; 2 John 1, 13). For example, Paul asks the rhetorical question, “Who shall bring any charge against God’s elect?” (Romans 8:33).
- God’s election is not arbitrary. Some in the religious world teach that God has already, arbitrarily forced every person into the position of being either elected or unelected—saved or lost—independent of any action he or she may take. However, the biblical truth is that God has elected that those “in Christ” will be saved, and any person may choose whether to be in Christ (Ephesians 1:3; Galatians 3:27; Hebrews 5:8-9).
- There is no limit to the number of people who may be elected. Whereas a limited few are chosen in manmade elections, God is willing to elect anyone who chooses Him. Jesus said, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life” (John 3:16, emp. added).
- God’s election can be refused. Just as a candidate in a manmade election may refuse a nomination or election, someone elected by God may subsequently change his mind about being elected. In fact, the Bible describes at least two people who were saved, but then left the Lord: Simon the Sorcerer (Acts 8:9-24) and Judas (John 17:12; Acts 1:17; Matthew 10:1-33). Furthermore, the Bible warns Christians repeatedly not to refuse their election (e.g., Galatians 5:4; 1 Corinthians 9:27; Hebrews 2:3; 10:26-31).
- At the end of time, God’s choice will be correct and final. Whereas manmade elections sometimes end in confusing recounts and doubts as to the integrity of the electoral process, God’s choice is accurate and just (Genesis 18:25). Christ is a righteous Elector (2 Timothy 4:8). And when the Lord returns, there will be no possibility of changing the just election results. On that occasion, Jesus will separate the elected from the unelected, and there will be no switching from one category to the other (see Matthew 7:21-24; 25; 2 Thessalonians 1:5-10).
Are you one of God’s elect? If not, please become one today!