DAVE ON ELECTION
One writer defined election: “God didn’t draw straws; He didn’t look down the corridor of time to see who would choose Him before He decided. Rather, by His sovereign will He chose who would be in the Body of Christ. The construction of the Greek verb for ‘chose’ indicates God chose us for Himself. That means God acted totally independent of any outside influence. He made His choice totally apart from human will and purely on the basis of His sovereignty.” Amen and amen.
I believe that the doctrine of election “gets” more people in Heaven than any other doctrine. Consider the following…
• Free Will—where you choose God. But what if I choose God but he doesn’t want me? Doesn’t God have free will too?
• Gospel regeneration—where you are saved when you believe and accept Christ. But what if I live in a place where the gospel is not preached? I think most of the whole human race would be going to hell if this doctrine were true. What if I am mentally incapacitated or die in infancy?
• Baptismal regeneration—where you are saved when you are baptized. But who authorizes and administers the baptism? Could I get just anyone to do it? If not, then who? What if I believed but I live in the North Pole and these official baptizers aren’t around and I go out to ice fish and this killer blizzard comes up and I get frostbite and a polar bear comes by and I had just rolled around in a tub of bacon to help the frostbite and the bear loves bacon and etc, etc?
• Baptism by proxy—when someone is baptized in your stead thus getting you out of hell and into heaven. But what if my name never makes the list or I accidentally get skipped? I’m down there in hell saying, “Hey, I was supposed to be next! You missed me! Stop! Go back!”
• Perseverance by proxy—you totally blew it in life but your living relatives are praying to get you out of hell and into heaven. What if my relatives are jerks and are content to leave me in hell? I don’t want to leave my eternal destiny in the hands of just anybody. I’d rather leave it in God’s hands.
• Nirvana by degree—you are continuously reincarnated until you finally get it right…think Bill Murray in “Groundhog Day.”
Some have said to me, “Well it just isn’t fair!” Did you feel sorry for the person you did NOT vote for in the last election? Did you send them an apology for NOT voting for them? You are going to choose only one person to be your spouse, right? Why not get married to everybody?
Some have said, “God wants everybody to be saved.” God wants everybody He elected to be saved, and so they shall without the loss of one. Let’s go back to our political example. I wonder what would happen if every voter voted for ALL the candidates? That would result in chaos and confusion. God is not the author of confusion; he is a God of order. Election is an orderly process and it suits the nature of God. He used an orderly system in creation and likewise an orderly system in salvation. He does not do anything haphazardly or on the fly. In the various doctrines listed above, there will be many cases where some will not do what is necessary to get saved…well, if God wants everybody to be saved then He must be very frustrated when one doesn’t make it.
Some have said, “What if someone believed but they were not one of the elect?” That is impossible because believing is a spiritual work, and only those with spiritual life can do a spiritual work.
And finally, there is the tired old “Well if I believed like you do, then I would go out and party and sin and etc.” I dare anyone to go out and sin their life away and see how happy the Lord is with that. Election does not take away our responsibility to obey God’s commandments; rather, it should increase our desire to obey them. And not only that, it should change our motive in obeying them…before we might be obedient to get saved. Now, we are obedient out of thanksgiving *because* He saved us.
Hope this has made some sense. Thanks for reading.–Elder David Montgomery-7-25-2015