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“You did not choose me; I chose you.” John 15:16a (NCV)
“I chose you to come out of the world.” John 15:19b (NLT)
GOD CHOSE US!
These words of Jesus must be the most reassuring words ever spoken.
We are born and slowly become consciously aware of our existence … and soon we realize just how fragile life is.
Who am I? Why am I here? Do I have a purpose? What is to become of me?
Will I die? What is that like? Is there life beyond … well, you know … beyond the end?
All normal questions. Down through the ages and throughout the cultures, humans have tried to answer those questions.
For most people, the answers are made-up, fabricated, mere fairy tales, concocted by medicine men, self-anointed priests, great warriors, and then passed down to each new generation. Worship ceremonies built around ritual and superstition solidified the “religion.”
But for God’s people, the ones who believe that He created all of the universe, including us, the answers are different.
God has revealed Himself to mankind.
He also has told us who we are (Gen. 1:26 ESV): “Then God said, ‘Let us make man in our image, after our likeness.’”
We are God’s creation, and He fashioned us after Himself.
IN THE BEGINNING, when God began this life-on-earth adventure, He took qualities of His being — courage and strength and bravery — and scooped up some dust from the ground and combined them into the first man — Adam, which in Hebrew means “earth.”
After showing Adam that he was one of a kind — higher than the animals but far lower than God, Himself — He took a rib from Adam’s side.
He mushed the rib together with a different set of qualities that God possessed — grace and beauty and empathy — and created the first woman as companion and helper to Adam. Adam called her Eve, meaning “mother of all living things.”
Such a glorious start to God’s perfect plan. Yes, there was a quick downturn when Adam and Eve failed to obey God, but God didn’t give up on them.
He came looking for them and pronounced his plan for salvation through Jesus Christ.
When Jesus walked the earth, He saw the multitude in need of a shepherd and declared in John 15:16 (NCV):
“You did not choose me; I chose you.”
THE APOSTLE JOHN, who referred to himself as “the one Jesus loved,” stressed the divine commandment to love God and one another. In his first letter, he wrote: “We love Him because He first loved us” (1 John 4:19 ESV).
That concept should give us such reassurance, that the Creator not only fashioned us, but fashioned us after Himself and pours love onto us.
There’s more. It’s even more profound than that. This is how God rescues us from sin and temptation. Here’s what James (the half-brother of Jesus and leader of the early church) has to say in James 4:7-8a (CSB):
“Therefore, submit to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you.”
Draw near to God, and He will draw near to you. Indeed, those are comforting words.
YOU PROBABLY KNOW friends and family members who “worship” some idol or god of their own creation: their family, job, status, boat, computer, house, or even a trait or characteristic—witty, attractive, intelligent, personable.
How do those gods stack up against the God who is Creator of the Universe, the One who comes looking for us, the One who allowed Himself to be tortured and executed for our eternal benefit, the One who draws us close with protective arms when we seek shelter from life’s storms.
Yes, God intervenes in human affairs, from beginning to end. Throughout both the Old and New Testaments, God says He chose us.
Jeremiah, the Old Testament prophet, quotes God in Jeremiah 1:5 (NET):
“Before I formed you in your mother’s womb I chose you.”
Luke, writing of Paul’s conversion in Acts 9:15 ESV, quotes God,
“He is a chosen instrument of mine to carry my name before the Gentiles and kings and the children of Israel.”
No other god devised by man’s imagination has ever done any of those things. No, they’re all inanimate objects, or nothing but the creation itself, or mythical creatures concerned mostly with their own sinful pursuits.
We worship a God who reveals Himself to us! A God who seeks us. A God who comforts us and protects us.
We did not choose God. He — Father, Son, and Holy Spirit — chose us.
He continues to choose us!
Glory to God in the highest!
O Loving and Merciful Father, please forgive us for our stupidity and sinful pride that keep us from fulling giving ourselves to You in a life-affirming manner. We hold something back, afraid to let go of every piece of our selves, yet You gave up the glory of heaven to assume the likeness of man, and then gave up the desire for life by humbling Yourself to die on a cross — for us. LORD, show us the way back to You through the Holy Spirit, that we might walk hand-in-hand with our Creator in the Paradise of love that He creates. Heaven is now for those of us in the LORD. All the praise, honor, and glory are Yours. In Jesus’ name. AMEN
- Can you relate to a supernatural Being who says He created you, wants a relationship with you, and even sent His Son to pay the debt for your rebellion against Him, so that by believing in Him, you will be reconciled to that supernatural Being? That Being is God. He chose you. He still does. Will you choose Him, too?
- Do you find yourself “worshipping” things more than God? Maybe it’s your car or your computer or your video equipment, or maybe it’s your job or your house or even your family? God says to place Him first in your life. Do you find that hard to do?
- Does knowing God chose you give you more sense of your purpose in life, of who you are and what might be expected of you? Do you like knowing that God has a plan for your life … or would you rather just live your days following your own dream? Would you be surprised if God gave you the aptitude and desire that He can use to shape you into the man or woman He intended? Can you see how you could be useful in His eternal plan?
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