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THE BEAUTIFUL DOCTRINE OF ELECTION

The doctrine of election, as generally understood, is a very repulsive one, full of partiality and inequity; but this is the result of misunderstanding the divine Word on this subject. The election taught in the Scriptures, which we shall endeavor to set forth, must be conceded by all to be one of the grandest doctrines of the Bible--not only founded upon grace but also upon justice, equity--and thoroughly impartial. The erroneous view of election, briefly stated, is that God, having condemned the whole race of mankind to eternal torture, elected to save of our race a "little flock" only-- permitting the vast remainder to go down into unspeakable horrors to which divine foreknowledge had predestinated them before their creation. The Westminster Confession, which is the ablest statement of this false view extant, specifically declares that this "elect little flock" is not to be considered as saved because of any merit of worthiness on their part, but simply and solely of God's sovereign will.

The correct thought respecting election, the view which we shall show the Bible everywhere supports, is to the contrary of this: that is, that death (and not everlasting life in torment) was the penalty upon our race, and involved every member of it through one man's disobedience; that God's grace manifested in the redemption that is in Christ Jesus redeemed the whole world through his sacrifice, which was the "propitiation [satisfaction] for our [the Church's] sins; and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world." (`1 John 2:2`) God elected that his only begotten Son should have the privilege of redeeming the race at the cost of his own life; and that as a reward he should be highly exalted to the divine nature, and should ultimately "bless all the families of the earth" by awakening them from the sleep of death, bringing them to a knowledge of the truth, and assisting the willing and obedient up to the full perfection of human life, and to more than Edenic blessings and conditions. The disobedient will be destroyed in the Second death. (2 Thes. 1:9; Romans 6:23).

God also elected to have a number of "saints" under his Only Begotten as joint-heirs with him in the glory, honor and immortality of the New Creation, and in the work of blessing mankind with human restitution. This Gospel age has not been for the purpose of thus blessing and restoring the world, but merely for the purpose of calling out from the world a little flock to constitute God's "very elect"--to stand trials and testings as to faith, love and obedience, and thus to "make their calling and election sure." (`2 Pet. 1:10`) But the calling and electing of this "little flock" in this manner works no hardship, no injury to the non-elect, who are in no sense further condemned because not called--because passed by. Even so, the mass of the people of this country are not injured or condemned when an election has taken place for officers of the Government and they have not been amongst the elect. As the object of earthly elections is to secure suitable persons for office for the blessing of the people in general with wise laws and administration, so the blessing which God has arranged for works no damage to the non-elect, but is intended to work a blessing to all of them--in that the elect are to constitute the royal judges, the kings and priests of the Millennial age, under whose administration all the families of the earth will be blessed.

 

For additional reading material on this subject, click on the topics below:

Volume 6 Study IV - The New Creation Predestinated
Frequently Asked Questions - Salvation

Volume 6 Study VI - Our Lord's Return -- It's Object, The Restitution of All Things
What Everyone Should Know About Being Saved - Two Days of Salvation, The Scriptural Basis
Where are the Dead?

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