Monday, February 12, 2024

The Heart of God

The Lord isn’t really being slow about his promise, as some people think. No, he is being patient for your sake. He does not want anyone to be destroyed, but wants everyone to repent. (2 Peter 3:9 NLT)

The heart of God is for everyone to be saved.

However, some people argue that it’s wrong to say that God loves everyone, because if someone isn’t one of God’s elect, then God doesn’t love them and therefore didn’t die for them. This is foolishness.

We ought to take the gospel to every person, because we don’t know who the chosen are—or are not. All we know is that God wants everyone to believe.

As Dwight L. Moody pointed out, “The whosoever wills are the elect, and the whosoever won’ts are the non-elect.”

Our responsibility is to bring the gospel to everyone we can. The apostle Paul wrote, “So we tell others about Christ, warning everyone and teaching everyone with all the wisdom God has given us. We want to present them to God, perfect in their relationship to Christ” (Colossians 1:28 NLT).

There is no denying the fact that the Bible appeals to the will of man. Jesus said, “Anyone who believes in me will live, even after dying. Everyone who lives in me and believes in me will never ever die” (John 11:25-26 NLT).

Revelation 22 tells us, “The Spirit and the bride say, ‘Come.’ Let anyone who hears this say, ‘Come.’ Let anyone who is thirsty come. Let anyone who desires drink freely from the water of life” (verse 17 NLT).

We get hung up on the hows and the whats of predestination, and we miss the whys. Why did God choose us from the foundation of the world? For what did He predestine us? We need to know the answers to these questions.

God chose us so that we could have fellowship and intimacy with Him. God wants us to be His children. Ephesians 1:5 says, “God decided in advance to adopt us into his own family by bringing us to himself through Jesus Christ. This is what he wanted to do, and it gave him great pleasure” (NLT).

Our sin separated us from God, but God adopted us into His family. That is why the Bible says, “And because we are his children, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, prompting us to call out, ‘Abba, Father’ ” (Galatians 4:6 NLT). This is the affectionate cry of a child. An English equivalent of “Abba” is “Daddy.”

God predestined us to be adopted into His family. But that is not all. He also predestined us to be holy and without blame. In Ephesians 1:4, we read, “Even before he made the world, God loved us and chose us in Christ to be holy and without fault in his eyes” (NLT).

This is the outgrowth of relationship. Realizing that we are children of God and that He has forgiven us causes us to want to live a life that is honoring to Him. Holiness speaks of inward purity. And blamelessness speaks of outward purity. It means that we live it both on the inside and the outside.

As we spend time walking with God, we will want to become more like Him.

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