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The Word "Chosen" in the Bible

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Question:  What is the meaning of the word "chosen" in the scripture?

Response:  "Chosen", in the New Testament, is almost always a translation of the Greek eklego, meaning "to pick out, chose, select for oneself", very much like the English word it translates. The theological significance is not to be found so much in any linguistic peculiarities of the Greek (or Hebrew, for that matter - bachar) as it is in the parameters of the "choice" involved. The key issue is who chooses and who is chosen. In the theologically significant passages of scripture you no doubt have in mind, it is God who chooses and it is those who choose God who are chosen by Him. Many are called (i.e., invited by God to become part of His family) but few are actually chosen because few are willing to respond to God's gift of love in Jesus Christ by faith in Him (Matt.22:14). Romans chapter 8:28-30 and 9:6-13 approach this issue from the standpoint of the sovereignty of God, that is, from God's choice of us who are destined to believe. Romans chapters 4 and 5, on the other hand, approach the issue from the standpoint of our faith - our choice of God - being the basis of our "election" by Him. Both points of view are true. We are chosen by God because we choose God and God in His infinite wisdom knew that we would do so before the world was even formed. The Plan of God for human history is a large part of the subject matter in part 5 of the Satanic Rebellion series. See also lessons #3, #8, #9, #13 of the "Peter's Epistles" series.

Please also see these links where this subject is discussed in much greater detail:

Faith:  What is it?

Free-will faith and the Will of God.

Soteriology: The Biblical Study of Salvation (BB 4B)

Hope this helps.

Yours in Christ,

Bob Luginbill


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