Romans 9:10-21 NIV
Not only that, but Rebekah’s children were conceived at the same time by our father Isaac. Yet, before the twins were born or had done anything good or bad—in order that God’s purpose in election might stand: not by works but by Him who calls—she was told, “The older will serve the younger.” Just as it is written: “Jacob I loved, but Esau I hated.” What then shall we say? Is God unjust? Not at all! For He says to Moses, “I will have mercy on whom I have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I have compassion.” It does not, therefore, depend on human desire or effort, but on God’s mercy. For Scripture says to Pharaoh: “I raised you up for this very purpose, that I might display My power in you and that My name might be proclaimed in all the earth.” Therefore God has mercy on whom He wants to have mercy, and He hardens whom He wants to harden. One of you will say to me: “Then why does God still blame us? For who is able to resist His will?” But who are you, a human being, to talk back to God? “Shall what is formed say to the one who formed it, ‘Why did you make me like this?’ ” Does not the potter have the right to make out of the same lump of clay some pottery for special purposes and some for common use?
So as much as chapter 8 made me feel I was secure in Him, then came chapter 9 and at first everything started looking bad again. What if God chose not to have mercy on me after all? God is sovereign, He made everything and can chose to do whatever serves His purpose. That seemed so harsh to me at first, but fair. After all, He is the creator and we are His creation.
The good news is that I believe He did choose me and He chose you. If you have any desire to obey Him and want to be His child then the only thing necessary is to have faith and believe and repent of your former thoughts and desires. Those who do not have a desire to be His children are the ones In danger of having their hearts hardened. In John 3:16 it says He loved us so much that all who believe can have life everlasting. The real question I need to ask is, instead of what if He chooses not to have mercy on me, why would He choose to have mercy on me, a total wretched sinner? Everyone of us has turned away from God at one time or another, and deserves death but He took that death for us and now we just need to repent and believe in what He did for us and He will and does show mercy to us.
This is such great news to me. I did and still do at times fall and go my own way rather than to follow His way. My real desire, though, is to understand His way better and to follow it. I think back over the years and remember times in my life when I could have really been in serious trouble, but God was watching me the whole time. I fully believe there have been many times when He saw me and said, “No I am not going to let this happen to you,” and He kept me from doing something I would have regretted forever. For whatever reason, his choice was to have mercy on me and I believe it is to have mercy on each of us. I totally believe it is His will that none should perish but that all would have eternal life. That is great news indeed!
by Ken Edgerly