Watching the Election Returns
Many of you will rush home after our worship service Tuesday night to watch the election returns. I expect Shelby and I will be up late doing that ourselves. So I thought it might be good for me to seize this opportunity to focus your attention on watching the election returns.
A while back I received an invitation to attend a conference for “Reformed Pastors and Church Workers.” The theme of the conference was “Growing the Church God’s Way.” Like most religious groups and denominations, the emphasis of all the planned lectures and activities was “growth” and “success.” Even those who call themselves “Reformed” and “Calvinistic” are, for the most part, completely obsessed with numbers, numeric growth, and success in the eyes of men. In the Word of God that is never the case; and it is never the case with faithful men.
When I read the invitation and the accompanying literature, I immediately thought to myself, “The only thing we do in this matter of growing the church is to get out of the way and watch God work.” Needless to say, I didn’t attend the conference. You and I do not grow the church of God. We just preach the Gospel and watch the election returns.
There is a people in this world called “the elect” and “the ransomed of the Lord.” These people are such a vast multitude that no man can number them; but they are a specific number.
· They are called “the elect” because they were chosen of God unto eternal life in Christ before the world began.
· These elect ones are called “the ransomed of the Lord” because they were redeemed by the precious blood of Christ and ransomed from the curse of the law by the sacrifice of God’s dear Son.
The Lord God assures us repeatedly in His Word that these chosen ones, “the ransomed of the Lord,” shall, at God’s own appointed time of love, return to Him (Jeremiah 24:6-7; 30:10; 31:8; 46:27; Hosea 14:7). Jeremiah 31 tells us about the return of God’s elect to Him.
· They were chosen, blessed, and accepted in Christ before the world began.
· They were scattered over all the earth by the hand of God through the sin and fall of our father Adam.
· They were scattered among the nations that they might be gathered to God’s everlasting praise.
· These scattered sheep were gathered out of the world by the sin-atoning blood of the Great Shepherd when He laid down His life for them at Calvary, and carried with Him into Glory in His resurrection from the dead.
· Now, the Lord God is gathering His elect out of the world by the power of His grace in the blessed experience of that grace given to us in Christ Jesus before the world began.
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