"I have Chosen You"
Another verse used to support selective salvation is John 15:16, which says "You did not choose me, but I chose you." Before I explain this verse, let me present a scenario to you. Let’s say I embezzled all of your money (savings, retirement, etc.). I then took this $500,000 and lost it all gambling. A couple of months later I come knocking at your door saying I want us to be friends again. I tell you I am willing to let bygones be bygones and am willing to overlook any differences that might be between us.
Since I am the offending party with no means of compensation, I have no right to initiate a friendship. The choice of initiating reconciliation is up to you, the offended party. This scenario is similar to our situation with God. Since we are the offending party (with no means of compensating for our wrongdoings), we have no right to request reconciliation. The choice is not ours; it belongs only to God.
Despite the way we have abused God; He still loves us. In fact, his love is so great He is willing to go to incredible extremes to resolve the problem. He initiated the resolution. He chose to bring us back to Him. He chose to do more than resolve our sin problem; He chose to allow us to live in Heaven and to become His bride.
Yes, God has chosen us and we have not chosen Him. This verse is not saying He has chosen to force us to become believers. Rather, it is saying He has chosen to offer salvation to us.
Another verse people use to support selective salvation is John 17:24. Here Jesus talks about those God has given to Him. They say this shows God has given some people to Jesus. This verse says, "Father, I want those you have given me … ."
Who is this special group of people given to Jesus? This group is the whole human race. If you look at the previous verse (v. 23), Jesus says, "… let the world know that you sent me and loved them even as you have loved me." Yes, God the Father has given a group of people to Jesus; this group is the world.
Another verse used to support selective salvation is 2 Thessalonians 2:13, "…from the beginning, God chose you to be saved … ." This is one of those verses that could be viewed either way. Without the context of the rest of the Bible, either viewpoint could have a valid claim. You may ask, "How is it valid both ways? I can see how it is consistent with selective salvation, but not the other way."
Sometimes we forget that God chose to save the fallen human race, but not the fallen angelic race. The angels, too, have rebelled against God, but it appears He has made no provision to redeem them. Yes, God chose us to be saved. He didn’t have to, but He chose to make salvation available to the human race. Before the beginning of time God knew we were going to sin and He knew Jesus was going to have to die on the cross to provide us salvation (Revelation 13:8 and 1 Peter 1:20).
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