John T. Willis

Monday, July 02, 2012

I know the plans I have for you--6

God's VISION is that God is constantly in relationship with all of his creation. The Bible clearly presents these relationships, which we will discuss briefly in the following blogs. God is related to his chosen people; God partners with his chosen people. A key word throughout the Bible is the verb "chose." The Hebrew word is bahar. The Greek word is eklagomai. From the Greek word, we receive the English word "elect." According to the Bible, God CHOSE various individuals and groups of individuals. Check YOUR concordance to find all the passages. Here are a few introductory truths from the Bible. 1. God chose Zion or Jerusalem. 1 Kings 11:13; Psalm 132:13 2. God chose Aaron and his descendants to be priests. Psalm 105:26. 3. God chose David as king. Psalm 78:70. 4. God chose Israel [the descendants of Abraham, the Israelites]. Deuteronomy 4:37; 7:6. When God chose the Israelites out of all the peoples on earth, God entered into a very close relationship with his chosen people. Several metaphors in the Bible emphasize this truth. God is like a parent and his chosen people are like children; God is like a husband and his chosen people are like a wife; God is like a shepherd and his chosen people are like a flock of sheep; etc. Repeatedly,the Bible states: "I [Yahweh] am YOUR God, and you [Israel] are MY people"--see Jeremiah 2:11, 13, 17, 19, 32 to cite just one chapter in the Bible. The prepositions "your" and "my" are intimate, endearing terms. The Bible teaches that God CHOSE Israel, NOT because Israel was more numerous that other nations, NOT because of Israel's wealth or power, and NOT because of Israel's righteousness [study carefully Deuteronomy 7:5-9; 8:18-20; 9:4-6], but because God arbitrarily LOVES his people. Why would God choose the Jews, the Israelites? This was because God loves the Jews. If God can show love to the Israelites, God can show love to anyone and everyone on earth. See 1 Corinthians 1:26-31. The function of God's chosen people, whether it be the Isrealites or the church, is to be God's instrument to allow God to work with a people on earth to deliver and save all human beings. Share YOUR insights and dreams and failures and anticipations with others. Let me hear from YOU. John Willis