What does "chosen" mean?

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by 12strings, Dec 3, 2011.

  1. 12strings

    12strings
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    At the risk of seeing some repetitive arguments, I'd like to hear a non-cal explanation of what the verses mean that we have been "chosen" and "predestined" by God. I have included a few verses for reference.

    Eph. 1: even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him. In love 5 he predestined us for adoption as sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will.

    Romans 11:5 So too at the present time there is a remnant, chosen by grace.

    1 Peter 2:4 - As you come to him, a living stone rejected by men but in the sight of God chosen and precious,

    1 Peter 2:9 - But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light.


    I have read some say that God chooses those who believe, but I don't see how that is any choice for God. (I recognize the opposite problem exists in calvinism: If God chooses, how is there any choice for man?)

    If God has predestined us for adoption, what does that mean if not God predestined some for adoption?

    Again, not trying to be contentious, but I still don't understand the non-cal explaination of verses like this.
     
  2. freeatlast

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    I would say God chose them just like these did not choose God.

    O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, [thou] that killest the prophets, and stonest them which are sent unto thee, how often would I have gathered thy children together, even as a hen gathereth her chickens under [her] wings, and ye would not!

    Election and free will, both equally working unto salvation.
     
  3. agedman

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    Not that I agree with him,

    But John R. Rice said that the gate has two sides.

    Whosoever will is written on the front of the door, and when you enter and look back over the gate it says, chosen in him before the foundations of the world were set.

    Like I said, I didn't particularly agree with him. He was an evangelist, and they tend to look at things evangelically. :)
     
  4. freeatlast

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    Edited by poster
     
    #4 freeatlast, Dec 3, 2011
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  5. zrs6v4

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    I think Ephesians 1 is pretty powerful for many reasons. I encourage everyone on here who is serious before God to consider and study chapters 1 and 2.

    The Ephesians were Gentiles (2:11) who Paul is writing to. These are not Jews, who Paul spoke to in Romans 9. This is important because some here want to reserve election only for Jews, while others want to apply election to both Jews and Gentiles but gut it :))) and say that God elects based on ..... anyway here is my take--

    Here are some powerful statements made in this letter in regards to God's choice:

    1:4-6 "In love He predestined us to adoption as sons through Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the kind intention of His will, to the praise of the glory of His grace, which He freely bestowed on us in the beloved.

    #1- God predestined, meaning He determined our destiny (He chose who we would be in Him.

    #2- This pre chosen destiny was for our future adoption through the payment Christ made so we could be brought back into fellowship with God. This was according to the kind intention of His will

    #3- The purpose was for the praise of the glory of His grace. This statement is similar to that in Romans 9:23-24

    "And He did so to make known the riches of His glory upon vessels of mercy, which He prepared beforehand for glory, even us, whom He also called, not from among the Jews only, but also from among Gentiles."

    This passages says the same thing: God chose to save vessels of mercy (the elected ones) before time began for glory including both Jews and Gentiles. In Ephesians He is telling this truth to them in regards to their election.


    Ephesians 1:11 "In Him also we have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to His purpose who works all things after the counsel of His will..."

    I find that this verse shines more light on what God's choosing, electing, and predestining look like.

    Before I make my comments, I want to say that overly debated topic seem to cover up clear evidence due to overuse of proofs. I do not get scared away from the overuse of passages and still would uphold Ephesians 1 and 2 with Romans 9 on this topic of God's choosing.

    Ephesians 1:11 shows that we are predestined according to His purpose. Furthermore pay close attention to the next statement, "who works all things after the counsel of His will" This is a strong statement revealed that God's will, His choice, is the driving force to all things He wants to do. In other words, His choice is not driven by other sources. What this means is that our faith itself was a result of something God did to bring about His will.

    If you still want to reason around this and argue that God's predetermination, God's will, and His choice are determined by something we do in time and space then I would ask you how you would explain Ephesians 1:11.

    The context of Eph. 1 and Romans 9 point to the fact that God is the one who determines who does what and where they go in this world and in the next. His will is not decided around any factor such as our choices or ideas. I can argue this confidently for our salvation and would also argue this for every single thing that happens on the planet, unless "All things" means something else in the context of Eph. 1:11.
     
    #5 zrs6v4, Dec 3, 2011
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  6. quantumfaith

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    What (who) is "us" in Ephesians 1. It is certainly possible that Paul is speaking of Jewish and Gentile believers together. Perhaps he is being inclusive of the Gentile believers in the election that has already been assumed for the Jewish believers. The Gentiles were not just a secondary thought but planned from the "foundation".

    FWIW
     
  7. zrs6v4

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    The context of "us" is the Ephesians who are included with Paul in the elect group of God unto salvation. To put it simply, the Ephesians (gentiles) are elected the same way the Jews and all believers are. "us" and "we" is all inclusive (believers).
     
  8. convicted1

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    Oh boy, I can't believe I am going into the DoG's "wheelhouse" with Romans chapyer 8, but here goes!!! :praying::praying:

    Romans 8
    1 There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.



    Now, those who are in Christ Jesus are no longer under condemnation, correct?? So, let us delve a little deeper in this chapter.

    28 And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.

    29 For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren.

    30 Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified.


    So, if the elect were chosen in Christ before the foundation of the world, then they were never under condemnation to start with. So there has to be more to this than meets the eye, correct?


    Ephesians 1:4
    4 According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love:

    5 Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will,

    6 To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved.


    Election starts and ends with Jesus Christ. Those who are saved, are placed into Him, He being foreordained to be the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.


    I have a feeling this will incite the natives!!! "GULP"!!!! :laugh:
     
  9. Rippon

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    The phrase :"who walk not after the flesh,but after the Spirit" at this point was an insertion. Does Paul put any condition on our justification?Of course not. In 8:4 it is legitimate.


    The elect and non-elect alike enter this world under the wrath of God.
     
  10. convicted1

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    Look Brother Rippon, it says the elect were chosen in Christ from the foundation of the world, not chosen apart from Christ. If it rings true the way y'all hold it, then the elect aren't under condemnation at any point in their life, because they were in Christ years before they were even born. Christ was/is THE ELECT, and we who are saved, obtain the "adoption of sons", and are grafted into the Vine, grafted in Him.
     
  11. quantumfaith

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    I agree convicted, I think Paul here is illustrating to the Ephesians that the gentiles being included in the elect was not simply an afterthought but part of the design all along.
     
  12. Aaron

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    This is a classic example of the rejection of a Scriptural declaration on the basis that it cannot align with human reason. Paul clearly states that we were raised together with Christ and made to sit together in heavenly places. It is not only a potential seating. Heaven isn't waiting. This is already accomplished, but it doesn't yet appear because in time, only Christ has been raised.

    Our election is of such a wonderful and glorious and eternal state, that it cannot be fully stated in temporal terms. We must simply submit to the declarations of the Scriptue regardless of our inability to wrap our carnal minds around them.

    Being chosen in Christ from the foundation of the world means exactly what it means, though there was a point in time on earth when we walked unsaved and alien to His grace
     
  13. psalms109:31

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    Our inner most being can never understand the word of God with the carnal mind, but it can not listen to this carnal mind and just trust in the words of Jesus Christ. We are to believe even if we don't understand. When God gives us the Holy Spirit then we can start understanding the things of God, but not if you continue to rely on your own understanding. It is only those who walk by the Spirit the word of God that this will happen to.

    Through out scripture it declares only those who trust in Jesus will be saved and never to lean on our own understanding, those who do God will continue to hide the truth from them.

    You will never be born again until we rely on God and receive His promised Holy Spirit.

    I was chosen in Christ not apart from Him only Jesus is worthy, I am not worthy to be chosen apart from Jesus. I have been chosen before the foundation of the world because it was Jesus who is and being in Him makes me as well. I was walking in darkness before Him headed for death. He saved me by walking in the light, who is Jesus. I was not saved before Jesus and His words of life. The letters of Paul was written to believers when he said to them, they were chosen before the foundation of the world not unbelievers.
     
    #13 psalms109:31, Dec 4, 2011
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  14. zrs6v4

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    I realize we all try to read our ideas into the text and at times it can be challenging to break our thinking processes. Convicted1, you are reading ways around the text without realizing it to argue against what is clearly being said. This correction wouldn't be fair unless I explain my point.

    What is being said by Paul isn't that the elect are chosen because they are already in Him (Christ) or that they are chosen because they will be in Him by there own decision God sees in the future.

    Your philosophical counter to the Cal view from human reasoning is that being chosen in Him means that we were already saved in eternity past, correct? That is not what a Calvinist believes nor is it the logical end. In fact we do it against you all as well at times, but to no avail :). I try to avoid these types of logical arguments that reach for a reasoning outside the text.

    What is actually meant by being chosen "In Him" is that God chooses an elect group of individuals for His purpose before they do anything good or bad or make any of their own decisions because "all things work after the counsel of His will". We are simply chosen in Christ meaning God chose to save us in Him at the proper time. We were predestined to be In Him. We are born under the wrath of God but while being under God's wrath God planned on saving us at His perfectly times event. So we come to find out that He always chose to save us through Christ's payment and our end is that we belong to Christ according to the predetermined will of God.
     
  15. 12strings

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    It seems that while most of the argument is over the words "chose us in Christ" that the related phrase "predestined us for adoption" poses a greater problem for those who reject unconditional election. Who did he Predestine? and for what? and on what basis, or condition?
     
  16. Van

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    Reply to 12 Strings,


    1) When God sets a person apart, in Christ, He chooses them. So to be chosen individually means God sets an individual apart in Christ for salvation.

    2) God also chooses corporately, a chosen people. Such a corporately elected group would not be comprised on individuals, unless God also chose the individuals and set them apart in the group. So a corporate election can be thought of as a target group, such as anyone who believes in Christ, but only when individuals are chosen based on faith in the truth, do the individuals become part of the corporate election.

    3) The issue of "predestined" is in how God predestines something. Calvinism says God predestined individuals to be adopted before creation. But there is no support in scripture for the assertion. None, zip, nada.

    a) Who is predestined to be conformed to the image of Christ? Everyone chosen and placed spiritually in Christ. Thus the redemption plan predestines the outcome of anyone redeemed, without any requirement of individual application prior to being placed in Christ.

    b) In Acts 4:28 it is used to describe that the suffering of Christ was predestined as part of God’s foretold plan of redemption. So the term applies to a feature of God’s predetermined plan.

    In Romans 8:29 all those in Christ are predestined to be conformed to the image of Christ. So, again, the term applies to a feature of God’s predetermined plan applicable to anyone in Christ, not to those not yet in Christ.

    In Romans 8:30 the term simply repeats the usage of Romans 8:29, those predestined to be conformed to the image of Christ are called to a Holy calling.

    In 1 Corinthians 2:7 the term is again applied to Christ as the predestined Lord of Glory.

    In Ephesians 1:5 the term is applied to all those in Christ as predestined to be adopted as sons, raised in glorified bodies.

    In Ephesians 1:11 the term is applied to those in Christ as being predestined to an inheritance, everlasting life with God, which is the fulfillment of God’s purpose in creation and predestined plan from all eternity.

    In summary, the term is only applied to features of God’s predetermined plan affecting Christ or all those, whoever they may be, in Christ. It is never used to describe either the general preselection of every specific individual nor the general preselection of specific individuals with foreseen faith, which are the erroneous views of the Calvinists and the Arminians.
     
  17. Iconoclast

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    you posted this again...it it is still wrong for the same reasons it was wrong the first 14 times:BangHead::sleep::sleep:
     
  18. convicted1

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    John 15 NIV
    The Vine and the Branches
    1 “I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener. 2 He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes[a] so that it will be even more fruitful. 3 You are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you. 4 Remain in me, as I also remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me.
    5 “I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. 6 If you do not remain in me, you are like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned. 7 If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. 8 This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples.

    Here you see where Jesus us talking to the Jews, and them being cut off. The Jews were God's CHOSEN/ELECTED people, and they were cut off. How could they be cut off, if they weren't there to begin with? They(Jews) were in Christ, in the sense that they were God's chosen/elected people. However, when Christ came, and they rejected Him, they were cut off from the true Vine, Jesus Christ.


    Jesus Christ is where election begins and ends. Those who believe, "God so loved the world that He gave His only Begotten Son, that whosoever believeth on Him shall not perish, but have everlasting life" are grafted in to Him.
     
  19. Van

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    Pay no attention to the posts of Iconoclast, all he does is copy and paste my post then disparages it in some manner, or in other words, all he does is throw up a smokescreen.

    My post answered the OP and described what being chosen means, and what being predestined means.

    Does "predestined us for adoption" present any problem for unconditional election?

    When did God predestine "us" for adoption? Pretty simple question. In Ephesians 1:5 the term is applied to all those in Christ as predestined to be adopted as sons, raised in glorified bodies. Consider when we were predestined? He predestined us "through Christ." This means Christ had died on the Cross before He predestined us. Otherwise we could not have been predestined through Christ. So the predestining of "us" occurs when we are spiritually placed in Christ.

    Second, read on a bit and note that those in view are "in the Beloved" i.e. have been spiritually placed in Christ.

    So putting it all together, the features of God's redemption plan were formulated before creation, and then were implemented according to God's timing throughout the history of man.

    Final point, what does it mean to be predestined to adoption? To be saved? Nope. Everyone "in Christ" is saved already. But what will happen at the second coming for those "in Christ?" We will be resurrected in glorified bodies, our adoption as sons of God.

    How do we have redemption, but "through His blood" which is code for His sacrifice on the cross. And when we were redeemed through His blood, or through Jesus Christ, we were predestined to be adopted as sons of God.

    This is not rocket science.
     
    #19 Van, Dec 5, 2011
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  20. MB

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    I had to ask myself was I "in Christ" before the foundation of the world?
    The truth is I was not and neither is anyone else. Everyone is born in sin. No one is ever born saved.
    What is being said Here then?
    The only way to understand this is to understand that the word "us " is no one inparticular but, the whole of every one who believes in Christ. Once we believe we are in Christ then and only then can we be chosen in Him. In other words the decision was made before the foundation of the world that once in Him we would be chosen. It is nonsense to assume we were chosen before we existed. Existance being a requirement
    This verse above is about Jews. The entire remnant is all Jews. God's chosen people.
    Again these two verses are to the chosen Jews. Notice it mentions race
    I've not read where we are chosen for adoption. You'd have to show me scripture that says this. Gentiles are definitly adopted but not chosen for it. I believe we are chosen for Salvation but even then this is not election as are the Jews.
    MB
     

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