Divine Election – The Older Shall Serve the Younger
Introduction: Before I started the Genesis series, I did a whole host of doctrine sermons. I preached on heaven, hell, the Holy Spirit, Christology, the rapture, the Trinity and so on. However, I didn’t preach on Election or Predestination. Today’s passage is used by Paul to explain this and so this is where we will go too.
Unfortunately, it’s become common to reject doctrine in preaching and teaching and to just give life application sermons. In fact, it is now the standard in many churches. I was in a church here last year and the pastor, during his sermon, said that it wasn’t even a good thing to argue doctrine because it divides the church.
I was stunned at this. The Bible is, first and foremost, a book of doctrine. Without properly understanding it, you end up with cults, neurotic people, and egotistical leaders. If one doesn’t understand doctrine, then whatever the pastor says becomes, by default, the church doctrine.
Instead of the Bible, his word is what matters. If you don’t think this is important, you will. When a family member or a friend commits suicide you will inevitably ask questions of a pastor. I know because I get at least three or four of these every year either by phone or email from people I don’t even pastor.
Who will counsel you if you have marital troubles – the Bible or someone’s opinion? If you’re a Christian and you do something terribly wrong – suppose you kill someone – does the Bible say you will lose your salvation?
I have to tell you, today’s topic, if misunderstood, will lead you to believe that maybe you have. Maybe you can’t ever know if you’re saved. Can you know? If you don’t have doctrine, you have nothing. Calling on Jesus and getting saved isn’t so important if He might “un-save” you.
Here is a statement which was placed on a post on Facebook recently. Can you tell where the error lies?
“If you seriously believe that Christ actually paid the penalty due for your sins, then there are only three possibly consistent conclusions: (1) Everyone for whom Christ died will be saved, but He did not die for every individual (Calvinism), (2) everyone for whom Christ died will be saved, and He did die for every individual (Universalism), or (3) everyone for whom Christ died will not necessarily be saved, in which case the only possible conclusion is that Christ’s sacrifice was imperfect; His atonement was not sufficient to save us.”
The problem is that it leaves out an obvious fourth option. This person didn’t take the time to think his post through, or more probably, he ignored what is correct because it doesn’t fit with his theology that says we don’t have free will in salvation. Calvinism rejects that.
The answer – Christ paid the penalty for all sins potentially (unlimited atonement offered), but only those who receive His substitutionary atonement will actually have them forgiven (limited atonement actual). This is what the Bible teaches. That one must call on the Lord to be saved. Anyone can, but not everyone will.
Can you imagine a preacher saying that Christ didn’t die for every individual? So much for Peter’s words that the Lord isn’t willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance.
As tedious as the second portion of our sermon might seem, I’d ask you to pay heed to what God has in His word concerning two children who fight in their mother’s womb which leads to God revealing their destinies before they are even born.
Text Verse: What shall we say then? Is there unrighteousness with God? Certainly not!For He says to Moses, “I will have mercy on whomever I will have mercy, and I will have compassion on whomever I will have compassion.” So then it is not of him who wills, nor of him who runs, but of God who shows mercy. Romans 9:14-16
Too often we forget that God is sovereign over creation. When we forget, we tend to blame Him for evil that occurs and we call Him unfair in how He deals with us. But just as the pot has no right to accuse the potter, we have no right to accuse our Creator. He is God and we are man and so… May God speak to us through His name today and may His glorious name ever be praised.
I. The Generations of Isaac
19 This is the genealogy of Isaac, Abraham’s son.
We now come to the eighth set of “generations” listed in the Bible. Last week we saw those of Ishmael which was a branch off the main line leading to Jesus. This genealogy of Isaac returns to the main line. So far we have seen the following generations listed –
The generations of the heavens and the earth (2:4); the generations of Adam (5:1); the generations of Noah (6:9); the generations of the sons of Noah (10:1); the generations of Shem (11:10); the generations of Terah (11:27); the generations of Ishmael (25:12)
According to the layout and structure of Genesis, this genealogy will commence with the birth of his sons. However, in order for us to see the sovereignty of God we’re given a recap of how and when he obtained his wife, Rebekah. After this we’ll see some insights of what happens before the children are born.
The coming verses show us that God is completely in charge of everything that happens. Just as He orchestrated the union of Isaac and Rebekah, He will choose when and how their children will be born and He will show us again, the doctrine of Divine Election.
19 (con’t)Abraham begot Isaac.
These words are given to confirm Isaac is the legitimate and chosen son of promise. One thing I’d like you to think about concerning these two men is how their lives resemble the figures they represent – God the Father and God the Son.
Abraham is the man of faith who forged his way into the unknown, heading to the Promised Land, conquering enemies, and living in anticipation of the promised son. When the son came, he obtained a wife for him. In so many ways, he typifies God the Father.
However, Isaac consented to be sacrificed. He is a man of patience, obedience, and acquiescence. Abraham initiated, Isaac carried out; Abraham led, Isaac followed; Abraham commenced, Isaac continued. He pictures God the Son, ever obedient to the Father.
20 Isaac was forty years old when he took Rebekah as wife, the daughter of Bethuel the Syrian of Padan Aram, the sister of Laban the Syrian.
The year was 2149AM at the marriage of Isaac and Rebekah. This verse uses the term Syrian. Some translations will say Aramean. The location means either. The Hebrew term is Arami or Aramean, but the exact spot is Padan Aram which is located in Syria.
Padan means “plowed field” and so this is the flatlands of Syria. Interestingly, Syria is just as much in the news today as it was then. It is a land of turmoil, war, and death which we see on TV every night.
21 Now Isaac pleaded with the Lord for his wife, because she was barren; and the Lord granted his plea, and Rebekah his wife conceived.
Just like Sarah, who was barren for the much of her life and even for 30 years after entering the Land of Canaan, Rebekah is also barren. Her condition will last for 19 years.
Because of the inordinate amount of time without having a child, Isaac prayed to Jehovah, for Rebekah. For all we know, they could have started praying for a child after the first year. God works in His own timing and to meet His own purposes.
Eventually though the Lord granted the plea and Rebekah conceived. The long period between marriage and birth demonstrated to Isaac and Rebekah, as it does to us, that the conception wasn’t merely a natural occurrence, but a gift of grace.
The structure of the Hebrew here is worthy of note. When it says “Isaac pleaded with the Lord for his wife” it uses the term lenokhakh ishto. Some scholars look at this as meaning that he prayed either in the presence of, or with, his wife
No matter how he prayed, both Abraham and Isaac were molded through the exercise of faith and prayer before they were blessed with children. In today’s world, we want everything right now and we become impatient with even small delays.
However, God continues to work in each of us in the way He worked through these heroes of faith. Some of you have family members who don’t know the Lord and you are there praying. Some of you have family in jail, lost in alcoholism, or perhaps drugs. And God is pleased to allow your prayers to continue.
Eventually and according to His wisdom, a response will come. It may not always be what we want, but it will come. Let’s see how Jesus instructs us from Luke 18 in times like this –
Then He spoke a parable to them, that men always ought to pray and not lose heart, 2 saying: “There was in a certain city a judge who did not fear God nor regard man. 3 Now there was a widow in that city; and she came to him, saying, ‘Get justice for me from my adversary.’ 4 And he would not for a while; but afterward he said within himself, ‘Though I do not fear God nor regard man, 5 yet because this widow troubles me I will avenge her, lest by her continual coming she weary me.’” 6 Then the Lord said, “Hear what the unjust judge said. 7 And shall God not avenge His own elect who cry out day and night to Him, though He bears long with them?
22 But the children struggled together within her;
Children will fight as children do, but this is an unusual occurrence because they beat each other up in the womb. The Hebrew word is yithrosatsu and these two were really punching and bruising each other. Mom was worried about both their safety and hers as well.
22(con’t)and she said, “If all is well, why am I like this?” So she went to inquire of the Lord.
Mom’s speech here is in the imperfect sense and so she is basically asking less about “why is this happening” than “if I have to go through all of this trouble, then why did I bother getting pregnant.”
This apparently isn’t uncommon to many moms the first time they get pregnant. And so off to the Lord she goes to find out what the deal is. From this verse, we can guess that there is, by now, a fixed way of inquiring of the Lord for the family of God.
It may have been to go to Abraham or a priest. Or it may have been to simply go to the Lord in prayer at a specific location. However it was done, Rebekah does, in fact, get an answer…
II. Divine Election and Predestination
23 And the Lord said to her: “Two nations are in your womb, Two peoples shall be separated from your body; One people shall be stronger than the other, And the older shall serve the younger.”
The natural order of family life is once again reversed as has already happened several times in Genesis. The younger will be ahead of the older. And thus we again see the doctrine of Divine Election introduced into redemptive history.
This doctrine will find its ultimate fulfillment in the work of Jesus and which is so clearly explained by Paul in Romans. Before they were even born, God elected the older to serve the younger.
However this serving and subordination isn’t limited to the children. Rather the verse says “two nations are in your womb.” It is therefore speaking both of the immediate and the future. In this then is also a picture of the true people of God, the elect.
I dare not even attempt to tell how much is in this verse concerning the doctrines of the Bible, the foreknowledge of God, and the confusion that results from what is being said. Seminaries have entire courses on concepts which arise from what the Lord tells her now and also what later writers of the Bible say about it.
What is being stated has led to some of the most heated battles in church history. If you follow what Calvin taught, you can trace it here. If you follow what Wesley taught, you can come here. In the end, and of all of the countless arguments about theology, there is always one right answer. God is clear, but we misunderstand.
Malachi speaks of these two children at the time before the coming of the Lord in relation to the attitude of the people in Israel –
“I have loved you,” says the Lord. “Yet you say, ‘In what way have You loved us?’ Was not Esau Jacob’s brother?” Says the Lord. “Yet Jacob I have loved; 3 But Esau I have hated, And laid waste his mountains and his heritage For the jackals of the wilderness.” Malachi 1
Paul builds on the words to Rebekah and combines them with what Malachi said in Romans 9 –
And not only this, but when Rebecca also had conceived by one man, even by our father Isaac 11 (for the children not yet being born, nor having done any good or evil, that the purpose of God according to election might stand, not of works but of Him who calls), 12 it was said to her, “The older shall serve the younger.” 13 As it is written, “Jacob I have loved, but Esau I have hated.”
Based on this, we find the doctrines of election and predestination. Paul actually speaks of predestination in Romans 8. Let me read you what he says so you have the starting point for the rest of the sermon –
28 And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose. 29 For whom He foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the firstborn among many brethren. 30 Moreover whom He predestined, these He also called; whom He called, these He also justified; and whom He justified, these He also glorified.
He says God foreknew certain things about the people of the world and based on that He predestined some of them to be conformed to the image of Jesus, just as He foreknew the destinies of the two children in Rebekah’s womb.
What I am going to give you is a breakdown of four major views on predestination. I’m going to use some huge words but I don’t want you to be worried, I’ll do my best to explain what they mean, which is correct, and why. And I’ll give simple concepts to help.
When a job came open at a Church of God in Sarasota, I told my friends who attended there that I couldn’t be their preacher because they have faulty doctrine in that denomination. They asked “Why” and I told them the difference. Their answer –
“Well I believe what you believe.” My question is, “Then why don’t you leave that church? You’re only getting bad doctrine.” This is important. Should you be a Methodist, a Roman Catholic, a Baptist? Do you know what your church believes? Why not?
One thing is for sure, and it’s found throughout the Bible and is summed up in Jonah 2:9, “Salvation is of the Lord.” Within this thought is an entire debate about salvation, including election which stems from God’s words to Rebekah. Because of this, we need to look at four of the major views which people hold about it.
In order they are supralapsarianism, infralapsarianism, sublapsarianism, and Wesleyanism. As I said, only one can be correct and that is the one I have always defended and will continue to defend, sublapsarianism.
Let me explain the wrong ones, who believes them, and why. The first is Supralapsarianism (supra – above). It says that election, or predestination, is logically prior to the decree to permit the fall. In other words, even before sin entered the picture, election was made for all people.
This view involves Hyper-Calvinists and is known as double-predestination. It is held by only a small, radical, and biblically unsound group of people. This view inevitably leads to judgmental egoists who feel God loves them and hates everyone else.
Because God predestined humanity before He permitted the fall of man, He therefore elected some for salvation and elected others for condemnation. He created them saved or condemned. That is their state and they have no choice in the matter. This means that God provides and applies salvation only for the elect; limited atonement
To explain, we’ll use ducks in a river. God creates a pond and the ducks. He puts the ducks in the pond, but after the ducks enter the pond, there is a cataclysm and water starts draining from the pond into a river heading toward a waterfall. When the ones He created for salvation come along, He pulls them out of the water – whether they want it or not.
And the ones He created for condemnation… He actually pushes them down the river and into the waterfall before they can get out. This is a mean and angry God. But this is what some people believe. Double predestination means that God actually hates the non-elect, even though He created them.
With this doctrine, there is absolutely no reason to evangelize anyone. Why bother telling anyone about Jesus or sending out missionaries? God chose and that’s that. It is as close to ascribing evil to God as one can come because it, in fact, does.
The second is Infralapsarianism (infra – below). This concept says that the decree of election is logically after the decree to permit the fall. This is held by strong Calvinists, but it is not double-predestination.
God created all and then permitted the fall. Since then, He has and will continue to elect some and will pass by others. He provides and applies salvation only for the elect (limited atonement.) He chooses who will be saved and they have no choice in the matter.
RC Sproul, if you know who he is, would be in this category. This view still holds to limited atonement like the first view. In both views, God loves only the elect in terms of salvation. A problem with this is that, God is love – He loves everyone equally. There is no increase or decrease in His love for us from His perspective.
Let’s go back to the ducks to understand. God creates a quiet pond and the ducks. He puts the ducks in the pond, but after the ducks enter the pond, there is a cataclysm and water starts draining from the pond into a river heading toward a waterfall. When the ones He decides should be saved pass by, He pulls them out of the water – whether they want it or not.
The others simply head down the river and are destroyed in the waterfall. At least He doesn’t push them down the river, but He also doesn’t bother helping any of them out. They were simply not a part of his plan. This isn’t a hateful God, but He is rather uncaring about those He didn’t elect. Poor ducks…
Like the first view, there’s no reason why someone would bother telling about Jesus or sending out missionaries. They will dispute this, but it is the logical result of such a view. If God chooses us for salvation apart from our will then honestly, what is the point? Are God’s plans going to be thwarted by us somehow?
Also, proponents of this view would say that if it was intended for all to be saved, then all would be saved – because God’s sovereign intentions must come about. Therefore, if it wasn’t intended for all to be saved, then it was only intended for some, the elect.
But this is a false dilemma. The atonement of Jesus is an offering and it is intended to save all, but it only applies salvation for those who believe. Calvinism, wrongly assumes that the atonement of Jesus has only one purpose which is to procure the elect’s salvation – Jesus died so we can be saved.
In fact, Jesus’ sacrifice according to Roman’s 1 has another purpose – to reveal the righteousness of God in judgment. God sends His Son to die in your place and you turn Him down. Even without the cross we are condemned. How much more just is God in judgment because of it!
The result of the idea of limited atonement is that it denies that God really desires all people to be saved. This is contrary to His omni-benevolence and also to the Bible itself that “none should perish but that all should come to repentance” (2 Peter 3:9).
So you understand this view more clearly you need to consider the concept of free-will. Do we freely choose Christ, or does God choose us apart from our will. The two options are known as monergism and synergism.
Monergism teaches that regeneration is completely the result of God’s work and man has no part or cooperation in it. It is salvation by irresistible grace leading to regeneration and then to faith. In other words, a person is saved before they are saved. It is convoluted and it involves unclear thinking and a twisting of the Bible.
Also, this view actually usurps God. If you have no choice in your salvation, then how do you know you’re are saved? How can anyone make a claim that they’re saved when they didn’t have anything to do with their salvation? In other words, you are speaking for God by claiming salvation at all.
Of course, their answer is, “I believed after regeneration; therefore, I am saved.” However, there are false gospels and people believe them. There are people who believe wrongly and yet claim they are saved. When they find out they’re wrong, they change their belief (hopefully) in order to be saved. So when were they saved? When they believed correctly!
False gospels imply there is a true gospel and the spirit of the antichrist implies there is a true Spirit. Belief must precede regeneration. And it does. This is what the Bible teaches. Your faith brings salvation. Finally, monergism denies free will, but free will is necessary for love because forced love isn’t love at all.
Synergism teaches that we freely choose Christ and then are regenerated to life. This is exactly what the Bible teaches numerous times, both by Jesus’ words (e.g. John 3:16) as well as the apostolic writings (e.g. Ephesians 1:13, 14). An argument against this though is that the Bible says we are dead in our sins and that it is Jesus who restores us to life. The argument is, “How can a dead person choose life?”
RC Sproul says it this way – “You have as much power to awaken yourself from spiritual death as a corpse has the power to awaken himself from physical death.”
This is a category mistake. We are spiritually dead in our sins. We are not dead beings. God made us with the ability to reason, to choose, and to decline. In fact, this is exactly what Genesis 3:22 implies. Mixing these categories leads to bad theology, such as monergism. Go back and watch my sermon on free will in Genesis 2.
The Bible teaches what we would call anthropological hylomorphism – we are a soul/body unity. The spirit of man is dead, but the spirit of man is tied to the soul. Paul, speaking to saved believers in 2 Corinthians 5, says the soul without a body is naked. The spirit of man is made alive when we call on Christ, even if the body later dies.
This is eternal life and it occurs the moment we believe. We don’t become a soul/body/spirit unity. Rather it is our soul which is now spiritually alive. Adam’s spirit died at the fall, faith in Christ regenerates that spirit. As I said, the spirit of antichrist which John speaks of confirms this.
The third wrong concept of our four major categories is Wesleyanism – named after John Wesley. This view says that God’s election is based on His foreknowledge but not necessarily in accord with it. In other words, God’s decrees are conditional – He changes His mind.
This is the beginning of major error and it goes back to a guy named Jacob Arminius who lived in the 1500s. His view denies eternal security. It reveals a God who is changing and makes mistakes.
John Wesley couldn’t decide what was right and so he followed the teaching of Arminius after asking God for a sign and then throwing lots twice. But we don’t get our theology from happenstance and chance. Instead we get it from the Bible.
John Wesley, the Methodists, the Church of God, Mennonites, and others who hold this view are wrong. Like the previous view, they believe that God created all and then permitted the fall. Then He provides salvation for all people.
God knows who the elect are based on the foreseen faith of those who believe. Because of this faith, He applies salvation only to believers, but believers can lose their salvation.
For a duck example, God creates the pond, the river, and the ducks. He puts all the ducks in the pond and they eventually go to the river which is heading toward a waterfall. As the ducks come by, He leaves His favorite perfect duck on the shore quacking for the ducks to come out…
“There’s a waterfall ahead. If you don’t come out, you’ll get quacked up.” Some of the ducks come out and some decide they like the river. Those that come out, however, can never know if they have upset the perfect duck and have to go back in the river.
There is never true safety and in fact, these ducks can’t really tell the river from the shore. The poor ducks spend their entire life trying to please a group of lower ducks that the perfect duck left behind.
If the lower duck (a pastor), says they have been bad ducks, then off they go to the river again. Imagine being one of these poor, unsure, and ever-worried groups of ducks. Poor ducks…
Our final view is what is correct. First, it makes sense from a philosophic standpoint. Second, it makes sense from a moral standpoint. And third, it is the only view which is supported by the Bible. And it answers the question of why we fell in the first place.
It also answers where evil came from without ever ascribing it to God. I explain this in my Genesis 2 & 3 sermons. Without this view, one is forever searching for where evil came from. This is a question Dr. Sproul and others must and do ask. They can never find an answer to it because their theology leaves no room for it.
Their mistaken idea is that God created everything perfect and so if man fell, then God must have blown it by creating a being that could fall. This is particularly true because if intent to sin is evil (as Jesus clearly says), then Adam fell before the fall because he lusted after the fruit before he ate it. But they know God didn’t create evil, so “Whence comes evil?”
The correct view is sublapsarianism (sub – under/after). God’s order to provide salvation came before His order to elect the people of the world (Rev 13:8) – “I will send my Son to die, and then that all who call on Him will be saved.” It provides unlimited atonement for everyone potentially, but only for God’s people who choose Christ actually.
Like the previous two views, this view holds that God created all and then permitted the fall of man. He provides salvation for all people, but the elect of God are those who believe. God passes by those who do not believe based on their rejecting His offer of Jesus. It isn’t that He doesn’t care about them, it is that they don’t care about Him.
This view applies salvation only to believers who cannot lose it. Yes, there is security, eternal security, in the arms of Christ. A theological basis for this view is that God is omni-benevolent. In other words, He loves all of the people of the world.
Yes Jesus loves me, this I know, for the Bible tells me so.
There is no hatred of the person and no active passing by people. He offers to all and the elect respond. He desires all to repent and come to Him for His unmerited salvation and favor. This doesn’t mean there is good in us, it means we see the good in Him and we come to it.
As far as our ducks are concerned, God creates the pond, the river, and the ducks. He puts all the ducks in the pond and they eventually end in the river which is heading toward a waterfall. As the ducks come by, He leaves His favorite perfect duck on the shore quacking for the ducks to come out and offering bread which will sustain them and guide them…
“There’s a waterfall ahead. If you don’t come out, you’ll get quacked up.” Some of the ducks come out and some decide they like the river. Those that do come out are protected by this perfect duck. If they stray, it is not to the river.
There is a force field that will never allow them to go toward that terrible place again. These imperfect ducks are saved from it despite themselves. God was pleased that they believed and though they may have forgotten it (2 Peter 1:9), He never did.
They are eternally secure in the fold of His perfect duck, and this is despite the crummy pastor ducks who come behind him.
The first two views hold to salvation only for the elect. The third view holds to salvation for believers but that they can lose it. The correct view holds to salvation for believers even though it is offered to all – and that when accepted it is a done deal, the salvation cannot be lost.
There is ample biblical support for both eternal salvation and salvation offered to all. Any verses which appear to contradict these views (such as John 6:44) are taken out of context by the theologically confused Christian.
I will give two examples for you to understand what I mean. John 6:44, is used against what I am saying – “No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws him; and I will raise him up at the last day.”
The simplest refutation of this is John 12:32 which uses the exact same word for draw – “And I, if I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all peoples to Myself.” Therefore, the context of John 6:44 must be considered to understand what Jesus was saying.
We can’t just rip verses out of context to come to a conclusion in our theology. By referring to John 5, especially verses 40-44, the difficulty is explained in the opposition of their will, their free will. Their love of honor and praise of men prevented them from believing in Him.
It wasn’t a lack of power to do what they should. It was erroneous opinions, pride, and obstinacy, mixed with contempt for Jesus. All of these are based on free will, not God’s forced will. They were not drawn by the Father because they exercised their will in opposition to Jesus.
The second and maybe most often used verses used to deny our ability to choose come from Romans 3:11, 12 –
There is none who understands; There is none who seeks after God. 12 They have all turned aside; They have together become unprofitable; There is none who does good, no, not one.”
Calvinists use these verses to say that no one seeks after God. Period. But Paul is quoting the Old Testament which is speaking of the atheist. As these were the only scriptures at the time, Paul expects that his audience would check the context.
Philosophically, the view I’ve supported today must be true. God doesn’t think sequentially – either syllogistically or discursively. Instead, all His thoughts are immediate and intuitive. Despite this, He wills things to happen in certain temporal sequence.
In other words, there is no change in God and God is outside of time. He created time for our benefit and we are living in what He created. Everything within this bubble is already known to Him, even though it isn’t known to us.
His sequence of events within creation include 1) His will to create before the fall. 2) The fall of man based on man’s free will. 3) After the fall comes an offer of salvation. If, accepted, God 4) seals the believer with the Holy Spirit.
According to Ephesians 1:13, this happens upon “having believed” and therefore this must be an eternal decision. Salvation is “according to the good pleasure of His will” not independent of it as Wesleyanism teaches.
The error of Calvinism and the error of Wesleyanism both lie in a false understanding of the sequence of events pertaining to salvation, and that misunderstanding is based on a misunderstanding of the nature of man.
What God says to Rebekah about the two children in her womb is the key to explaining what Paul is telling us in Romans. It demonstrates that God doesn’t predestine some to eternal happiness and/or some to eternal torture without regard to free will.
This is what the first two views state and is appalling in its ramifications. It demonstrates either a malicious or an uncaring God. Rather, there is a bestowing of opportunity for knowing and doing upon some men which is greater than others.
According to His own wisdom, without regard to our merits, he bestows upon us life, time, and place. Some have been created for noble purposes and some for ignoble purposes according to that placement. All who have the opportunity to hear the message are given the opportunity to respond to it.
In substantiation of this, all we need to do is look at the future of these people – the Israelites and the Edomites, who are named in both Malachi and Romans. After being subject to the Israelites, the Edomites were eventually assimilated into the Jewish society.
Then, this same group was cut off from God’s favor when they rejected Jesus. That lasted for 2000 years, exactly as the Bible predicted would happen. However, the day has come when they were regathered and have been returned to their land.
The Bible, in both Testaments says that someday Israel will come to a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ and that “all Israel shall be saved.” This includes the Edomite people that were assimilated into Israel.
And even more than that, there are Jews who have accepted Christ since the first century and who continue to do so today. They are provided the same salvation and the same promises as anyone else that come from any line of the sons of Adam.
Were, this verse to have said, “Two babies are in your womb, and two children shall be separated from your body. One child will be stronger than the other, and the older shall serve the younger” then people might have some type of argument for a different view.
But this verse doesn’t say that. Instead it says, “Two nations are in your womb, Two peoples shall be separated from your body; One people shall be stronger than the other, And the older shall serve the younger.”
Every word of God is pure and every word is intended to lead us to a right understanding of who He is and what He desires for His creatures.
There is only one option concerning the ducks on the river – God is calling out to them and He allows them the choice of coming to its banks. Once they are there, he will never allow them to suffer the possibility of destruction again.
Concerning the sufficiency of atonement, we are saved by the grace of God and we continue in that salvation despite ourselves. Concerning the scope of atonement – limited or unlimited – the answer is unlimited atonement potential, limited atonement actual.
Jesus Christ died for all people and the entire Bible supports this. He tasted death for all, however, not all are saved. Only those who accept God’s gift will receive it. Let me tell you how you can as well…
Closing Verse: For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. John 3:16
Next Week – Genesis 25:24-34 (Heaven’s Riches for a Meal)
God’s Grace, Our Choice
This is the genealogy of Isaac, Abraham’s son
Abraham begot Isaac into the line of the Promised One
Isaac was forty years old when He took Rebekah as wife
The daughter of Bethuel the Syrian of Padan Aram
The sister of Laban the Syrian became his spouse for life
And so she became the daughter in law of Abraham
Now Isaac pleaded with the Lord for his wife
Because she was barren, and the Lord granted his plea
And Rebekah conceived bearing in her womb new life
But after a while in her womb there was difficulty
The children struggled together within her and she said
If all is well, why am I like this?
So she went to inquire of the Lord and there she pled
It’s because she knew something was amiss
And the Lord said to her in a striking prophecy
Words that proved He is in control of all history
Two nations are in your womb as a mother
Two peoples shall be separated from your body
One people shall be stronger than the other
And the older shall serve the younger, you see
And thus we have the doctrine of divine election
And we can see that God predestines all according to His will
In each person He understands their future selection
Of whether we will choose heaven, or if we choose hell
He allows us the choice and yet in advance He knows
What we will do about His Son Jesus
But once the choice is made, His child He hallows
And thus His grace is poured out on undeserving us
What a great and awesome Lord
Who came to save us from a certain pit of hell
And to understand His truth we have His word
And in it, of His grace and love and mercy it does tell
Thank You God for our Lord and Savior Jesus
Thank You for the saving grace He bestows on us
Hallelujah and Amen…