2 Peter 1:10
ESV - 10 Therefore, brothers, be all the more diligent to make your calling and election sure, for if you practice these qualities you will never fall.
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► In Scripture there is not the slightest reference to an election of God whereby one person is chosen to be saved and another is not. There is no teaching that a man is saved because of God's choice alone; there must also be the choice of the individual to meet God's terms of salvation. It is the plan of God that is elected, chosen, foreknown, and predestined--not the individual or national choice of man to conform to that plan. The plan is the same for all alike; and everyone without exception is invited, chosen, elected, foreknown, and predestined to salvation, on the sole basis of the individual's choice and total conformity to the gospel to the end of life (Lk. 18:7). Otherwise, one will be lost, and there can there be no exception to this divine plan. God's part in salvation for all men has been completed, and whoever meets His terms will be saved. The whole program of salvation is simply that of becoming born again--becoming a new creature in Christ (Mt. 18:3; Jn. 3:1-8,14-18 2Cor. 5:17-18)--and of living soberly, righteously, and godly in this present world ever afterward (Gal. 5:18-21,24 Tit. 2:11-14 1Jn. 1:7; 2:29; 3:5-10; 5:1-4,18). If one sins after becoming born again he must repent and turn from sin again or he incurs the death penalty like all other rebels (1Jn. 1:9; 2:1-2). No man who lives or dies in sin will be saved (Mt. 7:19-21 Rom. 1:29-32; 8:1-13 1Cor. 6:9-11 Gal. 5:19-21 Col. 3:5-10). The word "ELECTION" is used in connection with Israel as a chosen nation with but one exception (1Th. 1:4). In Rom. 9 it deals with the choice of God in Jacob over Esau; and all such individual choices of God are based upon the disposition and attitude of the individual in conforming to Him and His will. ► Not even Jacob would have been CHOSEN if he had behaved toward God as Esau did. One becomes a special subject of God's dealings when he chooses to be and as long as he chooses to be. As long as one rebels against the choice all must make to be saved, no benefits of the election of God can apply to him. The word "elect" also refers to Israel as the chosen nation of God in all scriptures other than Lk. 18:7; Rom. 8:33; Col. 3:10; Tit. 1:1; 2Jn. 1:1,13 where it can be understood as pertaining to all Jews and Gentiles who conform to the predestined plan of God. Thus, Scripture makes it clear that only those who meet the terms of such a plan become the elect of God to share the blessings thereof; and those who choose not to conform to it will receive the predestined curses of rebellion. These simple facts should answer all questions on election, predestination, foreknowledge and like subjects. Truly God is "just, and the Justifier of him which believeth in Jesus" (Rom. 3:26) and the Judge of those who don't believe (Mt. 16:15-16 Lk. 13:1-5 Jn. 3:16-18 1Tim. 2:4-5 2Pet. 3:9; Rev. 22:17; etc.). ► "I have surnamed thee, though thou hast not known me". Isa 56:4b. Cyrus became known as "Cyrus the Great" as a result of God's blessing in making him conquer. After God's call of Cyrus he did know God (Isa. 44:28; Ezra 1:1-6). ► Four Elect's of God: 1. Christ (Isa. 42:1; 1Pet. 2:6) 2. All Christians (Rom. 8:33; Col. 3:12; Tit. 1:1; Jn. 15:16; Eph. 1:4; 2:10; 2Th. 2:13; 2Jn. 1:1,13) 3. Israel (Isa. 45:4; 65:9,22; Mt. 24:21-31 Mk. 13:22,27; 1Pet. 1:2) 4. Angels (1Tim. 5:21) Anyone chosen of God at any time, Jew or Gentile, is the elect of God (Rom. 9:11; 11:5,7,28; 1Th. 1:4; 1Pet. 5:13; 2Pet. 1:10). All men are called to become God's elect or chosen ones and can be if they will choose God (Mt. 11:28-30; 20:16; Jn. 1:12; 3:16-20; 6:37; Eph. 1:4; 2Th. 2:13; Jas. 2:5; 1Tim. 2:4; 2Pet. 3:9; Rev. 17:14; 22:17).
We make our calling/election sure by abiding with Christ and walking in faith (II Pet 1:3-11). We should examine our spiritual growth over time to see if we are growing in relationship with Christ. Practically speaking, this means as we walk by the spirit we should be growing in virtue, goodness, knowledge, self-control, and other traits that stem from a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. We will also be growing alongside fellow believers, using our spiritual gifts to edify the church. II Pet 1:10 is then related back to II Pet 1:5. We are diligent in making steadfast/dependable/enduring the calling and election God has given us by 'practicing these things', that is the process of II Pet 1:3-9 wherein we grow in Christ by adding goodness to faith, knowledge to goodness, self-control to knowledge, etc. We are heirs of the promise. No man or principality of the heir can take our hope away. If we are subject to Christ, then we are part of the people of God. God is purifying for himself a people all His own (Titus 2:11-14). This refinement process is hard, with many trials - but so long as we keep faith God's power will guard us, and we will overcome. (1 Pet 1:3-9, 1 John 5:1-5) There are no believers who are not elect, and we become part of God's elect people through faith. The elect are the people of God joined together under the headship of Christ (1 Peter 2:4-9). We as individual believers do not actually know who all the elect are until Christ returns and we inherit what has been promised us; a glorified body, that we might have eternal life with Christ. (Rom 8:19-30, Matt 13:24-29, Heb 6:1-12, 1 Pet 1:3-9). Throughout the Bible, election has always been a testimony of God's sovereignty and eternal perspective. It is meant to be a comfort, to be a testimony of the fulfillment of prophecy, to show God's power and knowledge, and to show how none of God's good purpose is frustrated by the actions of man. For example, when God called ('elected') Israel from among all the nations (1 Chron 17:21), it was so that Israel might be blessed among nations and all nations be blessed through Israel. It also was the nation God chose to work His eternal plan through. It's true and final purpose was for the physical nation of Israel to stand as a type for the eventual 'spiritual' people of God, and for God's redemption of Israel to stand in as a type for the redemption of Christ for all men. However, the Jews became arrogant in their position as 'the chosen people of God'. They expected a messiah who would overthrow Rome and set up the Jews as the actual rulers of all nations, and were infuriated by the early church gospel expansion to the gentiles. They could not understand how the gentiles could be "elect". And yet, God had chosen the gentiles to be brought into the fold of God long before Christ came to man. (1 Pet 2:10, Rom 9:6-26) Rom 9:26 hearkens back to a very important time in Israel's history (Hosea 1:9, Hosea 11:1-4), where God's wrath against Israel's unfaithfulness caused him to declare "You are not my people". God's choice of Israel did not guarantee their obedience. In the same way, we always have a choice between endurance in faith, or turning to deny Christ (II Tim 2:8-13, Col 1:21-23, Rev 3:1-6, Heb 3:6). "If we endure, we will also reign with him. If we disown him, he will also disown us." (II Tim 2:12) Read more under related topics: https://ebible.com/questions/3317-how-does-god-s-sovereignty-work-together-with-free-will#answer-17091 https://ebible.com/questions/3273-how-are-predestination-and-election-connected-with-foreknowledge#answer-16960 https://ebible.com/questions/265-what-is-predestination-is-predestination-biblical#answer-15328 https://ebible.com/questions/7882-is-salvation-created-by-faith-or-is-faith-created-by-salvation#answer-14614 https://ebible.com/questions/2097-how-can-i-know-if-i-am-one-of-the-elect#answer-9176
How do Christians make their "calling and election" certain? (2 Peter 1:10) We need to look at this in the immediate context, how this exhortation relates to the verses before and after. And then in the larger context, what these words speak to in general Biblical terms This admonition to make your calling and election sure is sandwiched between an exhortation to be cultivating the totally of our humanity in our walk of faith in order to enjoy and maintain a fruitful knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ and the hopeful, abundant reception into the everlasting kingdom of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. 2Pet.1:5-11 The two things therefore that are placed before us as the things that chiefly concern a Christian in this world on his pilgrimage to the next are. 1. The importance of having and maintaining a fruitful knowledge of Jesus Christ 2. Maintaining a view of life and reality that has a view toward eternity. The person who is not chiefly concerned about either one of these is described in V.9 2 Peter 1:9 For he who lacks these things is shortsighted, even to blindness, and has forgotten that he was cleansed from his old sins. Calling is the thing that occurs in every true believers life it is what Jesus spoke of in John 5:24-30 “Most assuredly, I say to you, he who hears My word and believes in Him who sent Me has everlasting life, and shall not come into judgment, but has passed from death into life. Most assuredly, I say to you, the hour is coming, and now is, when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God; and those who hear will live. For as the Father has life in Himself, so He has granted the Son to have life in Himself, and has given Him authority to execute judgment also, because He is the Son of Man. Do not marvel at this; for the hour is coming in which all who are in the graves will hear His voice. 29 and come forth—those who have done good, to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil, to the resurrection of condemnation. 30 I can of Myself do nothing. As I hear, I judge; and My judgment is righteous, because I do not seek My own will but the will of the Father who sent Me. Peter at the opening of this letter addresses, "those who have obtained like precious faith with us by the righteousness of our God and Savior Jesus Christ" When we line up the words of Peter with the words of Jesus we have this order. Peter speaks of obtaining faith, Jesus speaks in a life giving way to the spiritually dead so that they hear, and what they hear they believe because they are now alive to the person who is speaking, the life giving eternal Son of God. What they are aware of as a result of being made alive to Him is that they are sinners deserving of His wrath void of the righteousness needed for gaining acceptance with God. This Jesus provides as the Son of man. So Peter speaks to this by saying that they have this faith by the righteousness of Jesus because this grants the freedom to be in His presence and not be condemned Peter calls this faith precious because it is the gift that establishes the first connection we have with Jesus and then keeps us connected to Him for our ongoing growth and peace as we face the onslaught of the world the flesh and the devil. This becomes the theme of the rest of this letter. What Jesus speaks of here, "Most assuredly, I say to you, the hour is coming, and now is, when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God; and those who hear will live" is the calling that Peter is referring to. Other passages to support this claim are Ephesians 1:13 In Him you also trusted, after you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation; in whom also, having believed, you were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise, This verse joined with, Ephesians 4:20-24 But you have not so learned Christ, if indeed you have heard Him and have been taught by Him, as the truth is in Jesus: that you put off, concerning your former conduct, the old man which grows corrupt according to the deceitful lusts, and be renewed in the spirit of your mind, and that you put on the new man which was created according to God, in true righteousness and holiness. Jesus in His earthly ministry was never in Eph. When the human preacher calls sinners to," repent and believe" the ones who heed the call are the ones Jesus personally calls. There are many who heed the preachers call but are not called by Jesus, thus Peters admonition, " make your calling and election sure. Those who have no real interest in an ongoing deepening relationship through knowing Him, walking with Him, following Him must question whether they have been called by Him. The next part of the immediate context 2 Peter 1:10-11 Therefore, brethren, be even more diligent to make your call and election sure, for if you do these things you will never stumble; for so an entrance will be supplied to you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. and the words of Jesus are also parallel. "so He has granted the Son to have life in Himself, and has given Him authority to execute judgment also, because He is the Son of Man. Do not marvel at this; for the hour is coming in which all who are in the graves will hear His voice. 29 and come forth—those who have done good, to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil, to the resurrection of condemnation. Jesus and Peter both are communicating the certainty and finality of the ushering in the Kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ which will involve the final judgement and the end of everything that opposes His righteous reign. Again the only way to think of that day with joyful anticipation is through the fruitful knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. We have considered what the calling is about, what about the election. The more acquainted you become with Jesus the more you understand His love and absolute loyalty to the Father. How did Jesus understand the work he was given to do for our redemption? When his birth was announced: Matthew 1:21 And she will bring forth a Son, and you shall call His name Jesus, for He will save His people from their sins.” This idea of a people that were given to Him by the Father that the Father would draw and that He would receive was very much upon His heart John 6:37-40 All that the Father gives Me will come to Me, and the one who comes to Me I will by no means cast out. For I have come down from heaven, not to do My own will, but the will of Him who sent Me. This is the will of the Father who sent Me, that of all He has given Me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up at the last day. And this is the will of Him who sent Me, that everyone who sees the Son and believes in Him may have everlasting life; and I will raise him up at the last day.” John 6:44-48 No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws him; and I will raise him up at the last day. It is written in the prophets, ‘And they shall all be taught by God.’ Therefore everyone who has heard and learned from the Father comes to Me. Not that anyone has seen the Father, except He who is from God; He has seen the Father. Most assuredly, I say to you, he who believes in Me has everlasting life. I am the bread of life. Peter in his first letter picks up this same theme. 1 Peter 2:9-10 But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light; who once were not a people but are now the people of God, who had not obtained mercy but now have obtained mercy. When a person has been called by God he knows it was because God interviewed in his life. It was God who set him apart from the rest of humanity. He will be increasingly humbled by the fact that God, for no comprehensible reason, chose him and gave His one and only Son to be his Lord and Savior. He looks at himself even in relationship to others and exclaims why me only to hear back from God though you were once one of the not my people you are now part of a chosen generation, a holy nation, His own special people. 1 Corinthians 1:26-31 Glory Only in the Lord For you see your calling, brethren, that not many wise according to the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called. But God has chosen the foolish things of the world to put to shame the wise, and God has chosen the weak things of the world to put to shame the things which are mighty; and the base things of the world and the things which are despised God has chosen, and the things which are not, to bring to nothing the things that are, that no flesh should glory in His presence. But of Him you are in Christ Jesus, who became for us wisdom from God—and righteousness and sanctification and redemption— that, as it is written, “He who glories, let him glory in the Lord.”
Not all believers are called to special service like Paul was. God calls some to be preachers, some to be elders, some to be evangelist. God uses dedicated people. Most are not. The GIFT of God is eternal life. Romans 6:23. That is by a one time faith alone in Jesus alone for the free gift of eternal life. John 3:16-18. Our rewards in heaven are based on what we do after we have received the free gift of eternal life. We could never do anything that would merit eternal life. But, First Corinthians 3:11-15 There are rewards in heaven for the faithful. Gold silver rubies diamonds on down to wood hay an stubble. The thief on the cross was saved by faith alone apart from any works. Romans 4:5, John 6:47. There was a born again believer, Ephesians 1:13, in First Corinthians 5:5, who was sleeping with his fathers wife. Paul said, turn such a one over to Satan to kill the flesh, so that his spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord That man was about to lose his life, and the rewards he could have had in heaven, but He was still saved because God can not lie. John 3:18. First Corinthians 3:15. Only his works/rewards would be burned up. Our sin debt was paid in full, past, present, and future sins we have not even thought of yet because we never quit sinning in this life. First John 1:8 and First John 1:10. We are all sinners to a degree because our old nature did not get saved. We still have it. Those who discipline themselves can be used by God for special service. If we desire to be a leader in the church we should make our election to that office sure Second Timothy 2:18-26. God can use certain people. Many are saved but never grow in the faith. They stay baby christians all there life. Many are called but few are chosen to special service. This is not talking about salvation that is to everyone in the world who trusts Jesus as the only way of salvation. First John 2:2. Romans 6:23.The GIFT of God is eternal life by FAITH alone apart from works. Romans 4:5. Free gift from God to all who believe on His name. Romans 1:16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the POWER of God unto salvation to everyone that believeth, to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.
I think the basic meaning of Peter's script is being missed by a whole lot of us. He says to 'make certain or sure of your calling, or election.' To some this sounds as if Peter is saying 'to be certain you are actually saved or born again.' That's not what he means at all. Some of us, it seems to me, don't believe in the doctrine that some of us are called and some are not. I read somewhere that the election being spoken of here doesn't mean an individual is elected; the election is the plan that God uses. It's being called an election and it's talking about God choosing to use a certain plan. So when you make your election certain, you make sure you're abiding by God's plan. That's not what Peter is saying here. The meaning of election here is the meaning with which we're very familiar. He's talking about being specifically chosen to occupy an office. In this case, he means to be chosen to be "partakers of the divine nature" of He who called, or chose us (2 Pet 1:4). He means that we've been chosen to represent the Lord in the here and now, and for all of eternity. How do we make sure of our election, or calling? Again, he doesn't mean to be sure we are saved by being "diligent in our faith" walk. By "sure," he means that the person called, or elected, or chosen can remove all "doubt" that he/she was chosen, or elected. He's not talking about onlookers not doubting your status, but that you yourself, by walking the walk of a born again believer, can assure yourself of your calling. Think of the many people who go through trials and begin to doubt whether they're imagining themselves to be saved. It's a normal part of the sanctification process. Peter is saying, 'If you persevere in exercising self-control, godliness, love, and brotherly kindness,' you can be useful and fruitful "in the true knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ." In other words, if you carry yourself like a person who has been truly born again, you won't DOUBT that you were elected (chosen, as unlikely as it can seem) because of your behavior. Listen to what he says: "For he who lacks these qualities is blind or short-sighted, having forgotten his purification from his former sins" (vs 9). He doesn't say that it's evidence that you weren't purified; he says you're acting as if you've forgotten that you were chosen AND purified (by the blood of Jesus). Lacking those qualities doesn't nullify your election, it only causes us to begin to have doubts. If you were called, you're called. To behave accordingly is to "make your election sure," (lack doubt). I believe there are many of us who think we have to "make certain or sure that we're saved by acting a certain way. (By exhibiting the qualities Peter listed). That would mean Jesus died on the cross for us, and to "make our salvation certain," we must act like we're saved. That way we can be SURE. That's a "hybrid" salvation: a little of Jesus on the cross (a few hours), and a lot of us (the rest of our lives acting like christians). "For the children not yet being born, (In our case before the foundation of the world) nor having done anything good or evil, that the purpose of God according to election might stand, not of works but of Him who calls (does the choosing), it was said to her, "The older will serve the younger." As it is written, "Jacob I have loved, but Esau I have hated" (Romans 9:11,12,13). That's really plain! Election is God choosing one and not choosing another for a specific office. This means that God chose Jacob (as a patriarch for the Hebrew bloodline of Christ) and didn't choose Esau. We can lack doubt that we've been chosen. Imagine Jacob bragging about being worthy of being chosen... No way! To summarize: Election ~ The selection of a person for an office. Sure ~ Free from doubt. To make your election sure is to be free from doubt that God did in fact choose you to receive eternal life, (NOTHING CAN NULLIFY THAT) by practicing the moral qualities Peter listed.
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