One of my favorite verses is in Ephesians 1:4 and simply says: “even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world…” There is much more in that chapter but this little statement reminds me that there is no good deed I can do to earn salvation and that He had planned to choose me to serve Him. The fix was in and I’m glad it was!
Jesus backs up this assertion in John 6:60-71 below:
When many of his disciples heard it, they said, “This is a hard saying; who can listen to it?” 61But Jesus, knowing in himself that his disciples were grumbling about this, said to them, “Do you take offense at this? 62Then what if you were to see the Son of Man ascending to where he was before? 63 It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh is no help at all. The words that I have spoken to you are spirit and life. 64But there are some of you who do not believe.” (For Jesus knew from the beginning who those were who did not believe, and who it was who would betray him.) 65And he said, “This is why I told you that no one can come to me unless it is granted him by the Father.”
66 After this many of his disciples turned back and no longer walked with him. 67So Jesus said to the Twelve, “Do you want to go away as well?” 68Simon Peter answered him, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life, 69and we have believed, and have come to know, that you are the Holy One of God.” 70Jesus answered them, “Did I not choose you, the Twelve? And yet one of you is a devil.” 71He spoke of Judas the son of Simon Iscariot, for he, one of the Twelve, was going to betray him.”
People argue about whether or not God chooses us or we choose Him. How about both happen but that He chooses us and draws us first? He draws us by His grace and gives us faith to then choose Him though He has chosen us long before.
In fact, Jesus even chose a betrayer in Judas. Chosen by God to betray His Son. How interesting!
Is God sovereign? “Sovereign” means “that God answers to no one.” Does He owe you and I an explanation for His choices? I think not. He is God. We are His created beings. It is by grace we have been saved and NONE can boast!
Ephesians 2:1-10: “And you were dead in the trespasses and sins 2 in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience— 3among whom we all once lived in the passions of our flesh, carrying out the desires of the body and the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind. 4But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, 5even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ— by grace you have been saved— 6and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, 7so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. 8For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, 9 not a result of works, so that no one may boast. 10For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.”
-Mark (grateful He chose me long before I chose Him; in that sense, Jesus chose another betrayer: ME! yet He is in me and changing me into His image day by day – praise His Name)
NOTE: All verses taken from The English Standard Version of the Bible.