Here is test #7.Read the verses, please, and try to remember if you ever heard a sermon on them.  Probably you have not because they contradict popular ideas.  Most preachers will not preach them, except to try to explain them away, assuring folks that they do not really mean what they say.  Read on.  Decide if you, your preacher and your church really believe “all the counsel of God” (Acts 20:27).

Jesus prayed thus to His Father:“…As thou hast given him (Jesus)power over all flesh, that he should give eternal life to as many as thou hast given him. And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent” (John 17:2, 3).

Notice 3 things Jesus tells us here.  He tells us who it is that gives eternal life; what eternal life is; and to whom eternal life is given.  First of all we learn that it is the Son (Jesus) who gives eternal life.  About His sheep Jesus said, “I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish” (John 10:28).Christ Jesus Himself gives eternal life! We also learn that eternal life is a matter of knowing God the Father (“the only true God”)and Jesus Christ.  Jesus said, “no man knoweth who the Son is, but the Father; and who the Father is, but the Son, and he to whom the Son will reveal him”(Luke 10:22).  If Christ does not reveal the Father to you, you cannot know Him.  Unless and until Christ reveals the Father to you, you do not have eternal life!  Do not think you can go to God or Christ in a one-time prayer and come away knowing Him and His Son! When Paul wrote about his salvation experience he said, “But when it pleased God, who separated me from my mother’s womb, and called me by his grace,To reveal his Son in me…” (Gal. 1:15, 16).  Paul had been set apart for salvation from before his birth.  In time God called Paul by grace for the purpose of revealing His Son in him.  True salvation is a supernatural experience brought about by a personal, supernatural revelation of Christ (not voices, visions, dreams, etc.) in the heart and life of the sinner.  Has that happened to you?

A third thing we learn is to whom Christ gives eternal life.  Jesus said that He gives eternal life “to as many as thou (the Father) hast given him.”The Bible does not teach that eternal life is dispensed indiscriminately, but rather is given to those whom God chose in eternity.  The Bible is clear: “For many are called, but few are chosen” (Matt. 22:14).  The Bible says, “According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world” (Eph. 1:4).  “God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth” (2 Thes. 2:13).  God has chosen some to life.  God also makes it clear that all are welcome to come to Christ.  “Whosoever will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.  For whosoever will save his life shall lose it; but whosoever shall lose his life for my sake and the gospel’s, the same shall save it” (Mark 8:34, 35).  But apart from the work of the Holy Spirit and the Word of God, sinners will not come.  They are “lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God” (2 Tim. 3:4).  They do not want to deny themselves, bear a cross, and lose their lives as Jesus said they must.  They are welcome to come, but they will not.  Jesus said, “And ye will not come to me, that ye might have life” (John 5:40). The flesh wants nothing to do with God or Christ!

That God’s election or choosing is unto salvation is made clear by Paul’s statement regarding his suffering. He wrote “Therefore I endure all things for the elect’s sakes, that they may also obtain the salvation which is in Christ Jesus with eternal glory” (2 Tim. 2:10).  God has His “elect” and they shall obtain salvation!  In time God’s elect are brought to repentance and faith in Christ.God has determined the means to bring them to Himself.  Do you have biblical evidence that you are one of God’s elect?  Do you have a desire to really follow Christ – to do God’s will?  “It is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure” (Phil. 2:13).Paul wrote, “Knowing, brethren beloved, your election of God” (1 Thes. 1:4).  Paul knew those people were the elect of God.  He saw the evidence.  Do you know that you are one of God’s elect?  Have you experienced godly sorrow over your sin?  Has God worked in you “repentance toward God, and faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ?”(Acts 20:21).

Contact: Curtis Pugh, 505 NanihWaiya Ln., Poteau, OK 74953 – Telephone: (918) 647-7322

Authorized by the Bible Baptist Church, Denham Springs, Louisiana

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