Our Unconditional Election

Before the comments start coming in asking if I have gone off the deep end, please read this post. To be clear, I am not talking about the “U” in the acrostic for the Calvinist belief system. In one way, I am talking about the exact opposite of that. So here is my premise: we must choose Jesus Christ purposely, obediently, and unconditionally.

Purposely

I have heard it said that “God has no grandchildren” and I believe it is true. Each on of us must come to a personal decision to submit to the lordship of Christ, based on the faith and understanding we have gained from His Word. Infant baptism is not a concept that was taught in the New Testament, and therefore it has no place in a New Testament patterned church. If we are saved by grace through faith (Eph 2:8-9) and faith comes by hearing the Word of God (Romans 10:17), then there is no way for an infant who can do none of those things to be a disciple of Jesus Christ and submit to His lordship.

Obediently

As James wrote, faith is dead without obedience. Remember, when James is talking about works, he is referring to obedience. When Paul writes about works, he is usually addressing works of the Law, or works of our own merit. All people today are not just called to mentally ascent to a set of doctrines about Christ. We are called to submit to His authority by obedience that is made possible by grace through faith.
Jesus put it this way in John 3.

He who believes in the Son has eternal life; but he who does not obey the Son will not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him.” (John 3:36 NASB)

And later on in chapter 8:31 Jesus said:

So Jesus was saying to those Jews who had believed Him, “If you continue in My word, then you are truly disciples of Mine; (John 8:31 NASB)

Unconditionally
When we come to Jesus, we must come without reservation or preconditions. Too many are taking Jesus for a test drive to see if He really can make their life more enjoyable. Jesus demands that we come to Him not just as our Savior, but as our Lord as well. When we come to Jesus, our theme needs to be “I Surrender All” or don’t bother coming at all. Jesus is not here to be a welcome addition to your life. He wants to BE our life, but He does not share our lives. We die, and He becomes our very life.

And He was saying to them all, “If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross daily and follow Me. (Luke 9:23 NASB)

Paul picks up on this theme as well in Romans 6.

Or do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus have been baptized into His death? Therefore we have been buried with Him through baptism into death, so that as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, so we too might walk in newness of life. For if we have become united with Him in the likeness of His death, certainly we shall also be in the likeness of His resurrection, (Romans 6:3-5 NASB)

So yes, we can say we believe in unconditional election when it concerns salvation. We just need to be clear that we are talking about our choosing to accept the free gift of salvation in the Gospel message, and that we are placing no conditions upon Jesus to make us footloose and fancy free in this life.

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