Two comments on my last letter, “What Jesus has done for me,” March 8, were asking what is election? I would like to explain this.
Election is a doctrine that in most churches is no longer taught according to the Word of God. Neither is the London Baptist confession of 1689, which contains these doctrines, and which our fathers believed and have thought made available in our Baptist churches today.
Even so, at this present time there is a remnant according to the election of grace (Romans: 11-5). Knowing, brethren beloved, your election of God. For our gospel came not in word only, but also in power, and in the Holy Ghost, and in much assurance (1 Tes, 1:4-5).
An election which does not lead a person to believe the gospel, confess in his heart, confess Christ in baptism and identify whole-heartedly with the Lord’s church is not the election of grace. An election which does not give a person a new birth, a new heart, a new nature to love Christ, to love one another and to live and express that love daily is not the election of grace. An election that does not result in a new walk, a new attitude, a new spirit of unity and fellowship is not the election of grace. An election which does not make a person generous toward others, liberal in his support of the gospel ministry, liberal toward his house and other families and who has not learned that it is more blessed to give than to receive is not the election of grace. An election which does not, in time, produce these fruits of the Spirit, a growth in grace, the knowledge of Christ, a love for God’s people is not the election of grace.
There was a time when only God knew we were His elect. There came a time when we knew that we are elected of God. There will come a time when others know that we are His elect. Faith in Christ is not to work, but believe and know that all is done in Him, and by Him, and is imputed to us so fully that we are rewarded as if we did it ourselves.