How The Bible Defines: Election
will the real election please step forward?
Greetings. It is a pleasure to meet you. My name is Election. Sometimes I am called Elect, and sometimes Chosen depending on the context and who is speaking. Anyhow, I want to thank you for taking the time to get to know me for who I am. Over the years I have seen many people mistakenly assume they knew me well. Some embraced me as if I were a trophy, or held me aloft like a theological banner. But there are others who cringe when I enter a room as if they preferred I didn’t exist. They avert their eyes and refuse to look at me as if I were an enemy who would capture and imprison them if they looked directly at me. But I’m not a monster. In fact, I think if those who feared me knew me for who I am, they would love me and rejoice to be with me.
Not that I blame people for disliking me. If I were actually like what many people claim, I wouldn’t want to share a room with myself either. I’ve seen what some people have said about me, and to be honest, I don’t know where these definitions originated. But there seems to be a growing trend of people who assume these definitions are true and accurate portrayals of who I am. Do you know what definitions I am talking about? They go something like “Elect: chosen, chosen by God: to obtain salvation.” I have seen this kind of definition on multiple websites, in many commentaries, and increasingly in study Bible’s. Even some dictionaries will slip in a definition like this. But I tell you, that isn’t me.
My definition is not ‘chosen by God for salvation.’
Or at least, it wasn’t me. I realize that as a member of a living language, my definition may change over time. Once a definition begins to stick to a word, it kind of defines who we are. But, as a member of the Greek language, ‘chosen by God for salvation’ was not a definition I originally carried. That definition was attached to me some time after the Holy Scriptures were completed. Looking back, I can see it was after I was given that definition that people began to dislike and avoid me. So, I really appreciate you taking the time to look a little closer at me and perhaps begin to see the beauty God intended to display in me.
Verb: eklegomai, G1586
Adjective: eklektos, G1588
Noun: ekloge, G1589
Where to start in explaining who I really am? I think maybe a good starting point is to share that, as a scriptural Greek word, I had three forms. Scholars tell me that my original form was that of a simple verb, an action word. From my verb form (eklegomai) came an adjective (eklektos), and then a noun (eklogē). Similar to many other words, each of my forms were closely related but carried different connotations. Please don’t feel that you need to memorize the Greek words, for I will reference each form using the associated Strong’s number. In some ways, numbers are easier to keep track of, and maybe a little easier to understand (especially if you are not familiar with Greek).