Election: Not What We Think
GOD LOVES TO LOVE PEOPLE
Before we run past those words, hang out for just a moment and let those words be a refuge and source of hope to you.
“God loves to love people.”
It was God who ran toward us with arms open, longing to give us a divine embrace of grace after the cosmic rebellion of Adam and Eve.
GOD IS A MISSIONARY
Love for His lost and estranged children birthed His mission.
To launch His mission, God called a man named Abram, later to be renamed Abraham, and said that through him all the nations (ethnic groups of humanity) would be blessed (Genesis 12:1-3). And out of Abraham, God elected a tiny, powerless, nomadic tribe named Israel to be His vehicle of blessing so that ultimately the whole world would be blessed with the opportunity to know and be loved by the one true God (Deut. 7:6).
ELECTION: THE VEHICLE
The Biblical narrative paints a portrait of Election as the vehicle to carry the redemptive mission of God to the world.
Israel was God’s elect for the sake of the world; they would bring the knowledge of God to the nations as His missionaries (Exodus 19:5-6). It was through the election of Israel, Jesus, and then the Church, that God would love to love the world unto Himself (Deut. 4:32-35; 10:14-15; Luke 9:35, Matthew 28:18-20).
It would be wise for us to listen to theologian Christopher J.H. Wright when he says:
The election of Israel is fundamentally missional, not soteriological (salvation-driven). (Election) was rather, and more explicitly, that he and his people should be the instrument through whom God would gather that multinational multitude that no man or woman can number. Election is of course, in light of the whole Bible, election unto salvation. But it is first of all election into mission. The Mission of God, Christopher J.H. Wright, 263-264.
THEOLOGY SHAPES HOW WE LIVE
What I’ve written about is not dusty theology. How we view election will shape and empower how we live.