Menu Close

Epilogue

Elect of God: NT

[line align="center" class="title-line"]

New Testament

Epilogue: Choice vs Pre-selected

[dropcap class="article-dropcap"]A[/dropcap]t this point, there may be some who are inclined to ask if there is any significant difference between ‘chosen (and choice) people’ and ‘people pre-selected for salvation.’  It may seem that for God to choose an individual as one of His people implies that He must also have chosen the person for salvation.  The following illustration is offered as an attempt to address this question.  It begins as a single example but offers three different endings, each illustrating a different type of selection.

[dropcap class="article-dropcap"]A[/dropcap]t this point, there may be some who are inclined to ask if there is any significant difference between ‘chosen (and choice) people’ and ‘people pre-selected for salvation.’  It may seem that for God to choose an individual as one of His people implies that He must also have chosen the person for salvation.  The following illustration is offered as an attempt to address this question.  It begins as a single example but offers three different endings, each illustrating a different type of selection.

[dropcap class="article-dropcap"]S[/dropcap]uppose you were browsing through the shops at the marketplace and the wares of an artistic potter catch your eye.  Wandering into the store, you begin chatting with the man behind the counter and discover that he is the creator of all the pottery in the shop.  When you inquisitively begin to ask him about his craft, he welcomes you to tour his shop where he does all his work.

As he completes the tour, you happen to notice a shelf in a prominent place displaying a number of beautifully finished pottery pieces.  In response to your inquiry, the potter confides that these are vessels he decided to keep for himself.  Intrigued, you carefully examine each piece.  To your surprise, you see that they are not more impressive than those on display in the front of the store.  "Sir," you tactfully ask, "These are not more colorful than the others you have for sale.  Nor are they larger, or more exquisitely formed.  Why did you choose to keep these for yourself?"

With a smile, he tells you, "To be honest, it’s not easy for me to give up any of the vessels that I make.  But when I first opened my shop, I decided that I would only allow myself to keep some of my pottery.”

[dropcap class="article-dropcap"]T[/dropcap]he first ending illustrates the type of God’s choosing that we see in the New Testament.  God has determined before the foundation of the world that those in Christ will be His people.  As we each have experienced, He begins working in our lives long before we believed.  As we have seen in other’s lives, He also works in the lives of people who never believe.  The New Testament indicates that only those who believe are made His people.

The second ending corresponds with God’s choosing of people that we see in the Old Testament.  As illustrated by the potter keeping for himself the vessels that he made of clay from a particular source, so God chose for Himself the people who descended from a particular man, Abraham.

The third ending corresponds with the definition of ‘chosen for salvation.’  Based on his knowledge of the clay, the potter made a choice to keep the vessel before he began work.  This ending is intended to illustrate the idea that God selected certain individuals while passing over others.

Surely the reader will recognize there is a difference between the first and the third types of choices.  Is it a significant difference?  I suppose each reader must judge for himself, but it is the author's opinion that the two types of selection are incompatible.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *