Election Results ~ Pastor Mark Evans
Election Results Romans 9 & 10
What shall we say about the results of God’s sovereign election process? That Gentiles (outsiders) have attained righteousness, but Israelites (insiders) have not attained it. Why? - because the real election is not based on votes (human opinion or rule keeping), but on faith.
Faith opens the way where human effort and ingenuity fail. The outsiders simply believed God’s offer of the gift of forgiveness and of righteous standing and were saved and filled with the Holy Spirit. The insiders “stumbled” (Romans 9:32) over the whole idea of a free gift given to anyone who just believed and desired it. The difference is that one group wanted to do something it could take credit for while the other wanted to give the credit and the glory to the one who offered the gift – God.
Faith is simple (it is close and readily available to those who exercise it)
“Jesus is not known through theology, not through philosophy, but through childlike simplicity” Jon Courson.
A. W. Tozer compares faith with an expectant gaze on God (see John 3:14, 15):
“Now, if faith is the gaze of the heart at God, and if this gaze is but the raising of the inward eyes to meet the all-seeing eyes of God, then it follows that it is one of the easiest things possible to do. It would be like God to make the most vital thing easy and place it within the range of possibility for the weakest and poorest of us.
“Several conclusions may fairly be drawn from all this. The simplicity of it, for instance. Since believing is looking, it can be done without special equipment or religious paraphernalia. God has seen to it that the one life and death essential can never be subject to the caprice of accident. Equipment can break down or get lost, water can leak away, records can be destroyed by fire, the minister can be delayed or the church burn down. All these are external to the soul and are subject to accident or mechanical failure: but looking is of the heart and can be done successfully by any man standing up or kneeling down or lying in his last agony a thousand miles from any church” A. W. Tozer, The Pursuit of God, chapter 7.
Faith is effective to fulfill the rule of law
Romans 10:4 “For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone who believes.”
Faith keeps the law without looking to the law, because faith looks to the One who wrote the law.
Laws are made for the lawless. When the heart is changed by faith, the rule of law is no longer needed – the rule of law is replaced by the rule of life in Jesus Christ!
Paul said, “I through the law died to the law that I might live to God” Galatians 2:19. Paul knew he was guilty under the law (Romans 7), so he let the law condemn him to death that he could belong to another, even to Jesus Christ. He was not a prideful law-abiding citizen of Israel; he was a humble life-abiding member of Jesus Christ!
There is a cause and effect to the chain of faith
Romans 10:14-15 How can someone call on the Lord unless they believe? How can they believe unless they hear the promise of the gospel? How can they hear without someone to tell them? And how can someone tell them without being sent?
The whole chain starts with being sent and God does the sending, Matthew 28:18-20. So the whole thing starts with God. Then it’s on to us who believe and then from us to others. The very life and message of the Lord Himself is carried and transferred to others by anyone who believes! God puts His kingdom in the hands of the simplest common denominator – you and me.
Faith is not self-absorbed or self-focused
“Faith is the least self-regarding of the virtues. It is by its very nature scarcely conscious of its own existence. Like the eye which sees everything in front of it and never sees itself, faith is occupied with the Object upon which it rests and pays no attention to itself at all. While we are looking at God we do not see ourselves - blessed riddance. The man who has struggled to purify himself and has had nothing but repeated failures will experience real relief when he stops tinkering with his soul and looks away to the perfect One. While he looks at Christ the very things he has so long been trying to do will be getting done within him. It will be God working in him to will and to do.” Ibid
~ Pastor Mark Evans