Recruited Into The Lord's Army
Many young men and women are recruited into service of their countries around the world. For many, this comes when they reach a certain age or have completed their education. It can also be said that they are selected to do a service. Remember it was the Selective Service that sent the notices out to young men and women to report for duty. To suggest that Christians are recruits is not too much of a stretch. When we consider many other comments about Christians, we can see how it works for us. Let us notice a few things.
We have been elected. Christians are called the elect (Romans 8:33; Colossians 3:12; 1 Timothy 5:21). We are to be certain about our election (2 Peter 1:10; 1 Thessalonians 1:4) and behave in such a way that we do not discredit our Commander, Jesus. Being elected is the same as being chosen. That is what happens in an election; the people choose who they want to serve them.
We have been chosen. The Israelites were called the chosen of God, but so have Christians (2 Timothy 2:4; 1 Peter 2:9). We have been chosen by God (1 Peter 2:4; 1 Thessalonians 1:4).
We have been called. We have been called into glory (2 Peter 1:3). We are called out of darkness into His marvelous light (1 Peter 2:9). We have been called out of the world. We have been called to freedom (Galatians 5:13).
We have been created. We have been created in Christ Jesus for good works (Ephesians 2:10).
We have been approved. God is the one to whom we must desire to have His approval. Paul and his companions who went about preaching said that he was approved by God to preach the gospel (1 Thessalonians 2:4). We are to study to show ourselves approved (2 Timothy 2:15) to God. Anyone who serves God and does what He says is going to be approved (Acts 10:35).
Now, when did this election, selection, choosing, calling, creation, and approval take place? It was before you were born. When God established the foundations of the earth, He already had a plan for His people. God determined beforehand that certain people would be blessed by Him. These are those who decide to be obedient to His will. The predestination of God is not determined for us by Him, but it is of our own choosing. When we dedicate and consecrate our lives to Him, and determine to be faithful, He will be proud to call us His children.
As we look at the parables of Jesus, we see so much that the workers of the Lord are to do the work that the Lord wants done. We are told that if we do not bear fruit (even much fruit) we will be cast into the fire. We are to work for the Master and make His holdings and interests grow. We are to be builders in the Kingdom and do our part to help it grow. By being faithful and good workers, we can receive the rewards that are promised.
So you can see that this is a selection process that we participate in. God determined the criteria, and faithful Christians have learned to submit to His will and meet the criteria He established. This is nothing that we can do for ourselves that brings this salvation. It is entirely His grace that is offered to us. Our part is to agree to the conditions of that grace offered.
By Carey Scott
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