Election: Elect

Q. What Do the Terms, Election and Elect Mean?

A. “These terms are used in both the Old Testament and New Testament primarily with reference to ancient Israel as God’s chosen instrument for the salvation of the world (Is. 45:4; Rom. 11:7, 28), and in the New Testament also with reference to Christian believers (2 Tim. 2:10).  God chose Abraham and his descendants ‘to be a special people unto himself, above all people that are upon the face of the earth’ (Deut. 7:6), to know Him, to understand His ways, and to be His witnesses to the nations of earth (Is. 43:10).  The terms ‘elect’ and ‘election’ specifically designate Israel in it Messianic role as God’s chosen messengers to convert the heathen.  Neither anywhere connotes an arbitrary choice on God’s part with respect to the eternal salvation of individual Israelites.  The terms denote Israel’s unique status as a nation in the service of God, not the standing of the subjects of that nation individually as subjects of God’s grace and mercy.  This is evident in Paul’s discussion of God’s preference for Jacob over Esau as inheritor of the Abrahamic birthright (Rom. 9:10-14).”

“The divine ‘election’ of a chosen people remains valid in New Testament times (Rom. 11:5, 7, 28), but now Gentiles as well as Jews are included ((Rom. 9:24-26).  In fact, Christian believers, irrespective of race, are now in a special sense ‘a chosen generation’ and ‘the people of God’ (1 Peter 2:9-10), having inherited the privileges and responsibility of the covenant relationship originally entrusted to the Hebrew people (Matt. 21:43).  Individual Christians are to ‘give diligence’ to making sure they are numbered among the faithful to whom God will grant entrance into Christ’ everlasting kingdom (2 Peter 1:10-11).  In the Gospels Christ uses the term ‘elect’ of the faithful remnant immediately prior to His second coming (Matt. 24:22, 24, 31; Mark 13:20, 22, 27; Luke 18:7).  They are His chosen ones, rejected and oppressed by their enemies, but soon to be avenged and delivered.  In the hour of tribulation immediately preceding their deliverance, they bear their final testimony to the world, so bringing to completion the divine purpose that made them His chosen people.”

(The above information was gleaned from the “Seventh-day Adventist Bible Dictionary – Commentary Reference Series”)

Below are some quotes from Bible-based books that deal with election:

“How shall you make your calling and election sure? What is the way of salvation? Christ says, “I am the way, the truth, and the life.” However sinful, however guilty you may be, you are called, you are chosen. “Draw nigh to God, and He will draw nigh to you.” Not one will be forced against his will to come to Jesus Christ. The Majesty of heaven, the only-begotten Son of the true and living God, opened the way for you to come to Him, by giving His life as a sacrifice on Calvary’s cross. But while He suffered all this for you, He is too pure, He is too just, to behold iniquity. But even this need not keep you away from Him; for He says, “I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.” Let perishing souls come to Him just as they are, without one plea, and plead the atoning blood of Christ, and they will find acceptance with God, who dwelleth in glory between the cherubim above the mercy seat. The blood of Jesus is a never-failing passport, by which all your petitions may find access to the throne of God.” –“Christian Education” (Supplement), 1893.  {FE 251.2}

“Chap. 23 – The Heavenly Election

Wherefore the rather, brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure: for if ye do these things, ye shall never fall. 2 Peter 1:10.
This is the only election regarding which the Bible speaks. Fallen in sin, we may become partakers of the divine nature and attain to a knowledge far in advance of any scientific learning. By partaking of the flesh and the blood of our crucified Lord, we shall gain life eternal. In the sixth of John we read: “Whoso eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, hath eternal life” (John 6:54). “It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life” (verse 63).
None need lose eternal life. Everyone who chooses daily to learn of the heavenly Teacher will make his calling and election sure. Let us humble our hearts before God and follow on to know Him whom to know aright is life eternal.
“Give diligence to make your calling and election sure: for if ye do these things, ye shall never fall: for so an entrance shall be ministered unto you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ” (2 Peter 1:10, 11).  {HP 29.4}
Here are your life-insurance papers. This is not an insurance policy the value of which someone else will receive after your death; it is a policy that assures you a life measuring with the life of God–even eternal life. O what an assurance! what a hope! Let us ever reveal to the world that we are seeking for a better country, even a heavenly. Heaven has been made for us, and we want a part in it. We cannot afford to allow anything to separate us from God and heaven. In this life we must be partakers of the divine nature. Brethren and sisters, you have only one life to live. O let it be a life of virtue, a life hid with Christ in God!
Unitedly we are to help one another gain perfection of character. To this end, we are to cease all criticism. Onward and still onward we may advance toward perfection, until at last there will be ministered unto us an abundant entrance into the heavenly kingdom.”  (IN HEAVENLY PLACES, page 29)

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