Monday, June 27, 2016

How Can We Know Whether Someone Is Chosen Or Not?

If They Are Not Chosen And We Constantly Pray For Them Would They Be Saved?

Question : Actually I have a query. My family members (Mummy, Papa, Brother, Grandmother) and my Relatives are unbelievers. I daily pray for their salvation so that they may come close to the one True God and accept him openly. According to 1 Peter 2:9 the Bible says, "But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God's special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light." How can we know whether they are chosen or not. Me and my husband are frequently sharing the Gospel with them. And if they are not chosen and we constantly pray for them would they be saved?

Answer : Greetings to you in Jesus name! First of all I thank God for your godly husband and his family that God has given you, and that through him have made you to understand the Gospel of Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior, and become a child of God. I would like to tell you that the prayer of faith still moves God to enter in to impossible situations and make Him do what is impossible with humans (James 5:15).

Here is a scenario where the same question that you ask is being answered by the Lord Jesus to His disciples, when a religious young rich ruler who kept all the laws of God but was yet as dead and dry as a bone in his spiritual life without having that personal born again experience of a saving relationship with God, held on tightly to his earthly riches and possession which was his idol that replaced God, and he was sorrowful enough to not leave it all and trust God to hold on to Him in faith to get saved to become God's child, then the following conversation followed between Jesus and his disciples,"23 Then Jesus looked around and said to His disciples, “How hard it is for those who have riches to enter the kingdom of God!” 24 And the disciples were astonished at His words. But Jesus answered again and said to them, “Children, how hard it is for those who trust in riches to enter the kingdom of God! 25 It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.” 26 And they were greatly astonished, saying among themselves, “Who then can be saved?” 27 But Jesus looked at them and said, “With men it is impossible, but not with God; for with God all things are possible.”" (Mark 10:23-26, 27).

What do we learn from the above? We cannot get saved from sin to get eternal life as long as we hold on to an idol [whether physical, spiritual, soulish, social or material things] in our heart instead of God who is the only one who is worthy of all our worship, adoration, service and submission. God says in His Word, "I, I am the Lord, and besides me there is no savior." (Isa 43:11). The Old Testament reveals, "Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God is one LORD." (Deut 6:4, KJV), then it continues saying, "You are great, O Lord God; for there is none like You, and there is no God besides You" (2 Samuel 7:22). In other words, unless a person comes in to personal experience with this one God who is the creator of all universe, who created each and every one of us humans in His image, we cannot become saved and become "chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God's special possession, that we may declare the praises of him who called us out of darkness into his wonderful light." (1 Peter 2:9, Paraphrased). In short, people who choose this one Creator God through Jesus Christ by responding positively to the message of the Gospel by believing it to salvation which is the power of God to save their soul, which we actually share being concerned for their soul out of our love for God and them who hear it become chosen by God as God's children (Matt 20:16; Rom 1:16; John 1:12). When people choose God, it shows that God has already chosen them and have draw them towards Himself, that is why they actually get saved in the first place (John 6:44; 15:16). Jesus coming in to this world and dying for our sins was not an accident but rather it was foreordained before the foundation of the world by God (1 Peter 1:20), and that we have been chosen by God as believers in Christ Jesus before the foundation of the world, therefore we are also not accidents waiting to happen, but again rather have been predestined by God for adoptions as sons by Jesus Christ according to the good pleasure of His will who has made us accepted in the Beloved by His mercies and grace through the blood of Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior (Eph 1:4-5, 6-7). In other words, when we choose God and get saved, we get called and chosen practically on earth what theoritically have been know by God. When we continue to serve God and worship Him as His dear child, we become faithful sons of God (Rev 17:14; Rom 8:14)  

God has told all believers to go in to all the world and preach the Gospel so that people who do not know God can get saved from sin unto eternal life of relationship with God (Mark 16:15-16). The Bible clearly reveals that all humans who are born in this earth are sinners who have fallen short of the expected righteousness of God's standard of glory, and they all need a Savior [i.e. Jesus the Christ] to get saved from sin to receive eternal life (Rom 3:23; Ezek 18:20). In fact, God desires all humans to get saved from sin and want all sinners to live for eternity in friendship with Himself (1 Tim 2:3-4, 5-6; Ezek 18:23). God wants none to go to hell fire because it was in its original purpose was not made for human but for the rebellious fallen angels who usurped God's authority to live on their own will and way (Matt 25:41; 6:10), but as humans later joined in their rebellion against God with the fallen angels and Satan as the ring leader in sinful living (1 John 3:6, 8; John 8:43-44, 45-46), these people were let by God to choose themselves to go to hell fire in their own will and way (Matt 25:46). By God respecting their free will to fulfill their desire will allow them to eternally go to the only place where God's goodness of His Presence will not be available to them anymore, but instead they will all be tormented by worms that will not die and fire that will never be quenched for their sins (1 Thess 1:10; 2:16; 2 Thess 1:8, 9-10; Rom 2:7; 5:9; Mark 9:43-44, 45-46, 47-48; Rev 20:11-12, 13-14, 15).

God is like a Movie Director who knows the story of the whole world and about each humans individually from the beginning to the end even before it ever began because it is His-story that becomes history (Isa 46:10-11), the very reason God reveals the future concerning what is to come through His Word the Bible which the prophets spoke in the past is to make people understand that there is no other God in the world beside Him to save them from sin and give them eternal life (Isa 48:5-6, 7-8; Isa 45:22, 25; 43:10-11). We should not out of curiosity try to judge people whether they are chosen by God or not, in fact we will never know until God one day will judge people (1 Cor 4:3-4, 5; 2 Cor 13:5-6), so we should instead wait in hope by faith through love serving them, praying for them and sharing with them the Gospel truth whenever possible and where ever possible as you both have been doing. Thus by doing the above, the right use of wealth will happen through the Gospel in helping the poor, making men happier and better, leading them to repentance and to God, will gain for us friends, perhaps the very persons whom we have helped might get saved and might welcome us in heaven if they die and go before us and will thank us for sharing the Gospel to them (1 Cor 7:14, 16; Acts 16:31, 34; 1 Peter 3:1-2), perhaps the angels of God who rejoice over one sinner that repents (Luke 15:7, 10), above all Christ and the Father who have made their home in our hearts till then will then receive us into “everlasting habitations” when we will die at the end to go on to be with God in heaven (Luke 16:4, 9, 11, 13; John 14:23, 2-3). We can only serve God by using our time, treasure and talent in whatever possible way for the furtherance and proclamation of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, so that the true heavenly riches and treasure might be actually collected by us to rejoice in the Lord and leave this present earth with full of eternal riches when we all die one day to go on to be with our God whom we have loved with all our heart when we were present on this temporary earth for a period of time as pilgrims and strangers with a purpose to fulfill God's will for our lives, families and others whom we have made as friends for eternity ahead (Heb 11:9-10).

Because of God's foreknowledge of His omniscience, to Him the future of all people is known already as much as we humans know about the past in the present time. But God doesn't intervene in to the free will of man for any reason or influence him in any way to create a mileage for Himself, except for the righteous judgment over the wicked and a special blessing of His favor for the one who works righteousness (Psa 7:11, 12-16; Prov 10:6, 22; Gal 6:7). We want to tap in to that secret things that the Lord knows out of our curiosity to know whether what we do out of our love for God and others will become fruitful and profitable to us now and for eternity ahead or not. But we must understand that, "The secret things belong to the LORD our God, but those things which are revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may do all the words of this law." (Deut 29:29). In short, God wants us to work for Him in obedience to His Word out of our love for Him, it is not our duty to dig in to the secret things of the Lord to know whether what we have done in obedience to God will be worked out by God to become fruitful or not. God does not reward us as man rewards at our success in terms of being fruitful or not, but rather God rewards us all according to the motive we have done something being faithful to His call that was given to us (Matt 25:21, 23; Luke 16:12; 12:42-43, 46-47). So we as God's children must keep praying and sharing the Good News of the Gospel in obedience to our Lord Jesus' commission, and carry on faithfully in prayer afterwards for all to whom we have shared the Word of God (1 Tim 2:1-2; Luke 24:47-48, 49). When God desires all sinners to be saved, my question is, if there is no possibility of them being saved, why should God reveal his desire for all humans to be saved? Either God wants only the chosen to be saved or in truth can want all sinners to be saved if there is a possibility? Either God is telling us the truth or is lying, the Bible reveals that God cannot lie and so we must understand that there is a possibility for all sinners whom we meet in person to become saved if we faithfully in obedience to God share the Good News of the Gospel of Jesus Christ and continue to pray for their salvation in continual obedience to God's word (Titus 1:2; Num 23:19; 1 Tim 2:1-2, 3-4, 5-6, 7).

So when the disciples heard from Jesus, "It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God," they were very very astonished because they themselves were rich, they told Him, 'Who then can be saved?,' as they themselves come under the category of rich people of the upper middle class of their times. Jesus knew that these disciples even though they were rich but their hearts were sold out for Jesus and God's mission on earth to save all souls. So, "Jesus looked at them and said, “With men it is impossible, but not with God; for with God all things are possible." (Mark 10:27). What do we learn from the answer of Jesus? We should faithfully share the Gospel with all unbelievers especially with our family members and relatives who are still not saved, and then faithfully pray to God expecting the impossible with humans [that is to save people] to become possible in partnership with God. We may never know, somehow God whom we love with all our heart, will work all the good and bad of the relationship we have with unbelieving strangers, friends and families through the sharing of the Gospel to become good at the end through them being saved by the power of God (Rom 8:28). Praise the Lord! What a wonderful God we have, cause God has promised to save those whom we pray for. I know that even when we fail in this regard, God is faithful to help us continue to do the work of saving souls, or else has other ways through which other people of His to touch the people whom He has chosen for His Glory by His foreknowledge (Rom 8:29-30; Acts 18:10).

From the life of George Mueller we can learn something in this regard to pray to God for our unsaved loved ones and friends without giving up our hope for them to get saved by God.

“One day George Mueller began praying for five of his friends. After many months, one of them came to the Lord. Ten years later, two others were converted. It took 25 years before the fourth man was saved. Mueller persevered in prayer until his death for the fifth friend, and throughout those 52 years he never gave up hoping that he would accept Christ!

Mueller never stopped praying for his one unsaved friend. Mueller’s words concerning this man’s life have been recorded. “I have been praying for 63 years and 8 months for one man’s conversion. He is not saved yet, but he will be. How can it be otherwise? I am praying.” George Mueller was so convinced of the prayer answering God, he served. – But Mueller never saw him come to Christ. He died at 93 years of age.

At George Mueller’s funeral, his friend was in attendance, and as Mueller’s casket was being lowered into the grave, the man fell to his knees and cried out, “Oh God, be merciful to a sinner like me!” It was there in the dirt at the graveside, that George Mueller’s friend gave his heart to Christ! The prayers of the man George Mueller, were answered at last. Thus during Mueller’s funeral the last one was saved, and George Mueller's faith was rewarded. Some times we should be strong enough to pray and die in faith, even though we have not received the promises, but having seen the power of God's unchanging promises afar off should become assured of them, embrace and confess them to know our own temporary status on this earth as strangers and pilgrims on this earth, but live as those God's children who seek a homeland in the heavenly country and the city which God has prepared for those of us who love Him (Heb 11:13-14, 15-16; John 14:1-2, 3-4).

On persevering prayer George Mueller said: "I look at a stone cutter hammering away at a rock a hundred times without so much as a crack showing in it. Yet at the 101st blow it splits in two. I know it was not the one blow that did it, but all that had gone before."

"Eighteen-year-old Hudson Taylor wandered into his father's library and read a gospel tract. He couldn't shake off its message. Finally, falling to his knees, he accepted Christ as his Savior. Later, his mother, who had been away, returned home. When Hudson told her the good news, she said, "I already know. Ten days ago, the very date on which you tell me you read that tract, I spent the entire afternoon in prayer for you until the Lord assured me that my wayward son had been brought into the fold." Our Daily Bread, July 19, 1989. [Hudson Taylor (1832-1905) was a famous missionary in China. He was founder of the China Inland Mission which, at his death, included 205 mission stations with over 800 missionaries, and 125,000 Chinese Christians. He spent 51 years in China].

Have you been praying for a need, situation, loved one, seem to have no answer? The bible encourages us to pray, not lose heart.

Know one thing, “Men ought always to pray, and not lose heart.” (Luke 18:1), because with men saving people from sin unto eternal life is impossible, but not with God; for with God all things including saving unsaved people from sin unto eternal life are possible." (Mark 10:27, Paraphrased).

So I encourage you both to continue to pray for all the unsaved loved one's of your family, relatives, friends and strangers (Heb 13:2), then keep sharing the Good News of the Gospel whenever you can. God will help you be a blessing and will continually make you a blessing to many more people to come in the coming days. Remember that the greatest blessing we can receive from God is to be a blessing to others around us. Be blessed and be a blessing!!!

Much Blessings....


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