How earnestly should we seek for salvation?
"Wherefore... brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure." 2 Peter 1:10.
NOTE: This text at once reveals the fact that our salvation, so far as our own individual cases are concerned, is dependent upon our own action. We are elected to be saved; but we are to give diligence to make this election sure. If we do not, it will not meet its purpose in our case and we shall be lost.
How important is it that we persevere to the end?
"Behold, I come quickly: hold that fast which thou hast, that no man take thy crown." Revelation 3:11.
NOTE: A crown has been prepared for each of the finally redeemed. Every soul is a candidate in the race for eternal life, and hence for a crown. Faith in Jesus and perseverance to the end will make our election sure.
On what condition is the crown of life promised to us?
"Be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life." Revelation. 2:10.
How long ago did God and Christ determine that they would seek to save us?
"According as He hath chosen us in Him [Christ] before the foundation of the world." Ephesians 1:4.
Who are those that will thus be saved?
"That we should be holy and without blemish before Him in love." Verse 4, R.V.
To what has God foreordained those who attain to this character?
"Having foreordained us unto adoption as sons through Jesus Christ unto Himself." Verse 5, R .V.
According to what does God call us?
"And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to His purpose." Romans 8:28.
In fulfillment of whose plan have we been predestined?
"Being predestinated according to the purpose of Him who worketh all things after the counsel of His own will." Ephesians 1:11.
Upon what condition is salvation offered to us?
"Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved." Acts 16:31.
For how long must we maintain our faith in and connection with God-in order to achieve this final salvation?
"He that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved." Matthew 24:13. (See James 1:12; Revelation 2:10.)
Can our names be written right now in heaven?
"But rejoice that your names are written in heaven." Luke 10:20.
Whose names only will be retained in those books?
"He that overcometh,... I will not blot out his name out of the book of life." Revelations 3:5.
What scripture is sometimes cited as evidence that God is arbitrary in His
dealings with men?
"Therefore hath He mercy on whom He will have mercy, and whom He will He hardeneth." Romans 9:18.
But what other scripture explains those toward whom God "wills" to be merciful, or otherwise?
"With the merciful Thou wilt shew Thyself merciful; with an upright man Thou wilt shew Thyself upright; with the pure Thou wilt shew Thyself pure; and with the froward Thou wilt shew Thyself froward." Psalm 18:25, 26. (See also Isaiah 55:7.)
NOTE: God wills that men shall be saved. He has foreordained the characters that will entitle men to salvation, but He does not compel anyone to receive Christ, possess this character, and be saved. This is a matter of individual choice. By His mighty acts and judgments in Egypt, God "hardened Pharoah's heart." (Exodus 7:3, 13, 22.) But the same manifestation softened the hearts of others. The difference was in the hearts, and in the way God's message and dealing were received; not in God. The same sun which melts the wax hardens the clay. Exodus 8:32 says that Pharaoh hardened his own heart.
How many people does God desire to be saved?
"Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth." 1 Timothy 2:4.
What is our part in the work of salvation?
"Choose you this day whom ye will serve." Joshua 24:15. "If any man willeth to do His will, he shall know of the teaching." John 7:17, R.V. "Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved." Acts 16:31. "Whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely." Revelation 22:17.