Chosen How? Why?

The phrase “Chosen People” is often used in culture to justify believing that “we” are “better” than “them” because “God” chose “us”. While self-righteousness is not anyone’s best quality, it is a common feature of almost all cultures. It is rare to find a culture that believes others are just as good and just as important as “us”. How are we chosen: elected, drafted, or selected?

Elected?

While the Bible does refer to “elect” people, there may not have been a vote. I don’t believe that God asked the angels to choose by vote which humans get to come to heaven and which ones do not. God loves all of us as His children. Would any loving parent let others have total power to determine the future of our own children? I could be wrong but I don’t think this is the way it is done.

Besides, does anyone remember campaigning before the angels to get votes? I don’t.

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Military-Style Draft?

The military one is purely random. Each day of the year is given a number and the people born on the lower-numbered birthdates are “drafted” first. They are of the age needed, and unless they have a debilitating reason, they are off to boot camp.

In some countries, the draft is automatic. As soon as you come of age, you must enter the military for a few years.

In neither version of the military-style draft, has the person done anything at all to deserve being drafted. In fact, many resent that kind of draft and don’t want to be drafted!

Sports-Style Draft?

When a sports team chooses or drafts someone, it’s because they are wanted on the team. That athlete has something about them which is desirable. That athlete has demonstrated something of value: speed, strength, agility, or power.

The team has a need for a certain type of player and is filling their own need. I’m not sure that God has “needs” that are filled by any of us.

These drafts are often well-publicized and very well organized. Generally speaking, the best players are chosen sooner than the players who may be average. There is an amount of pride that goes with being chosen in the early rounds. They have worked hard and been recognized for their efforts, talents, skills, and work ethic.

It is easy for those of us who believe we were “drafted” by God for His team because we were such great people.

However, I don’t remember working hard to be “drafted” by God’s team before I became a Christian. In fact, one can say I lived a life that was the exact opposite!

Selected?

Let’s face it, we feel pride only because we forget who we were, and what the Bible says about us. We are told to be humble, not arrogant, not proud, and certainly not posh.

From 1st Corinthians:

For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.

The New King James Version, 1st Corinthians 1:18

Where is the wise? Where is the scribe? Where is the disputer of this age? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of this world?

The New King James Version, 1st Corinthians 1:20

But God has chosen the foolish things of the world to put to shame the wise, and God has chosen the weak things of the world to put to shame the things which are mighty;

The New King James Version, 1 Corinthians 1:27

From Luke:

“When you are invited by anyone to a wedding feast, do not sit down in the best place, lest one more honorable than you be invited by him; and he who invited you and him come and say to you, ‘Give place to this man,’ and then you begin with shame to take the lowest place. But when you are invited, go and sit down in the lowest place, so that when he who invited you comes he may say to you, ‘Friend, go up higher.’ Then you will have glory in the presence of those who sit at the table with you.

The New King James Version. Luke 14:8–10

Lastly, let’s remember that Christians are not doing the best that they can do if they focus on being “God’s Chosen”. After all, they are only a branch that’s been grafted into the original bush as a branch. Not only that, it is more accurate to call Christians “rescues”, just like the pets in the animal shelters. Just like “rescue” animals had an owner before and need a new one, our previous owner was our selfish, self-centered heart. Our new owner is Someone who wants us to look beyond our own horizons and treat people with compassion and love.

Christianity is about more than getting into heaven. It’s about showing God’s love to an unloving world through our behavior!

Please comment and/or respond to what you heard inside of you as you read this! Let’s share!

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