The whole idea of God calling and electing certain people and not others is a difficult one to grasp. However, I believe there are many questions we have about the doctrine of election that we will never know the answer in its entirety.
His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him who called us to his own glory and excellence, by which he has granted to us his precious and very great promises, so that through them you may become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped from the corruption that is in the world because of sinful desire. 2 Peter 1:3-4 NIV
Therefore, brothers, be all the more diligent to confirm your calling and election, for if you practice these qualities you will never fall. 2 Peter 1:10 NIV
God doesn’t fully reveal everything about His plans and purposes (Deuteronomy 29:29 NIV) and we must trust Him at His word that he is working to the benefit of his elect and for the glory of His own name.
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How should we process this and other passages that say some have been called and elected by God, meaning others have not? How do we know if we are a part of the elect or not?
Here are three observations:
1. It is not up to us to decide who is called and elected (thankfully!).
Our love for our neighbor is not bound in our knowledge of knowing who is called and elected by God to inherit His kingdom.I have asked myself the theoretical question, “If I only knew who God has elected, I could share the gospel with them so they can come to faith!”
But we know God has not designed it this way. He has designed it where his people make Him known to the world and bring glory to His name by the way we conduct ourselves and live as His holy people.
2. God’s called and elect will never fall away.
For this very reason, make every effort to supplement your faith with virtue, and virtue with knowledge, and knowledge with self-control, and self-control with steadfastness, and steadfastness with godliness, and godliness with brotherly affection, and brotherly affection with love. 2 Peter 1:5-7 NIV
2 Peter 1:10 states, “if you practice these qualities you will never fall away.”
The elect of God will never fall away. Those whom have fallen away, chase after the offerings of the world and ultimately come to the end of their life apart from Christ, according to the Scriptures, were never a part of God’s elect.
Maybe those who fall away appeared to live a godly life at some point, but had other motives. A motive for putting on the appearance of living a life pleasing to Christ. But, again, thankfully we don’t have to sort through all those details.
I just pray God will strengthen me, protect me, be my refuge and have mercy on me. In faith that God will hold faithful to His word. I will live in faith that I have been elected by God.
3. Follow Him by faith and confirm your election.
We don’t confirm our election by supplementing our faith because faith is not enough. Rather, we confirm our election by displaying our faith in the virtues listed in verses 5-7.
Living a godly life requires us to forsake what appears to be good for us in this life. Take up our cross and live a life that holds eternal value.
As Christians, we are continually being sanctified and justified. In this truth, we are to work towards being godly, in light of the saving faith of Christ. Our faith is not a faith obtained by working for it. Our faith; however, should be evident in the way we live our lives becoming more like God and His character.
Remember, God’s elect will never fall away.