Name and Place for August 19 (’14)
Among Christians, there seem to be three sides to the debate about God’s election. First, some deny it exists. Second, some want to ignore the debate altogether. Third, some embrace it. David Wells, in his way, puts it like this:
That God, from the very beginning, disclosed himself as the God of mercy and of infinite loving-kindness is obvious. This was a constant theme in the story of God’s Old Testament people even as it remains a constant theme among God’s people today.
At the beginning of their long sojourn, God’s Old Testament people learned that he had chosen them simply and only because he had “set his love” on them (Deut. 7:7; cf. Deut. 10:15). It was not because they were an impressive people. They were, as a result, assured that “he will love you, bless you, and multiply you” (Deut. 7:13). His love was not predicated on anything that they had done.
God’s blessing could, of course, be lost through disobedience. And it frequently was. The story of God’s ancient people as they wandered through time is a sorry one. When God, as it were, turned his face from them, they lost his blessing and protection. They often were overrun by enemies as a result. But within Israel were those bound into the Abrahamic covenant by God’s electing love. This could never be lost. It stands for all eternity (89, God in the Whirlwind).