The Lord did not set His love on you nor choose you because you were more in number than any of the peoples, for you were the fewest of all peoples, but because the Lord loved you.
God’s elective purpose for you means God will accomplish His plan for your life. Isn’t that an encouraging truth?
You might ask about predestination, “What about the Jewish people? Didn’t God predestine the Jews as well?” The answer is yes. In Deuteronomy 7:7-8, Moses explained, “The Lord did not set His love on you nor choose you because you were more in number than any of the peoples, for you were the fewest of all peoples, but because the Lord loved you.” That is why He chose Israel. God looked down, and of all the nations He could have chosen, He chose Israel. Why? For one reason: He chose to love them. That is why He predestined Israel.
If God predestined Israel, then does that mean all of Israel is going to be saved? No. In fact, when Paul wrote the book of Romans, the majority of Jewish people had rejected Christ. So if God predestined Israel, then why isn’t all Israel going to be saved? Has the promise of God failed? Paul answered that in Romans 9-11. He said that God has not failed in His promises because nowhere and at no time has God promised to save all Israel. Did you know that? There is no promise that every physical descendant of Abraham will be in Heaven one day. Paul said not all those who claim to be Israelites are true Israelites. It is not being a physical descendant of Abraham that matters; it is being a spiritual descendant of Abraham, related to Abraham by faith. In John 8:39-44, Jesus said to the Pharisees, in essence, “You think you are okay because you are Abraham’s physical descendants and God is your father. No, your father is the devil.” Only those who are spiritually related to Abraham by faith are the true Israel. Paul said the same thing in Romans 2, 9, 10, and 11. Nowhere in the Bible is there a promise that all ethnic Israel is going to be saved. The promise was to believing Israel.
You say, “What about Romans 11:26, where Paul said, ‘All Israel will be saved’?” He was not talking about all ethnic Israel. Paul was saying that God will fulfill His promise to all of the true Israel–that is, those who have been elected by God to salvation.
As we look at the controversial subject of election, I want to remind you that to try to separate the truth of God’s sovereignty in election from the equal truth of man’s responsibility to accept the gospel and share the gospel with others is neither logical nor biblical. The Bible teaches both. The Bible teaches God’s election in salvation; it also teaches our responsibility in choosing to be saved and sharing the gospel with others. The same Apostle Paul who believed in predestination and election also wept over the lostness of Israel and gave his life to sharing the gospel with as many people as possible, and we have that same command as well.
Today’s devotion is excerpted from “More Than Conquerors” by Dr. Robert Jeffress, 2014.
Scripture quotations are taken from the NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission.