God is sovereign and He has chosen a people for Himself. The whole counsel of Scripture reveals to us a unified plan of God involving His people commonly summarized by the phrase, I will be their God and they will be my people and I will dwell with them. Again and again, we come across this phrase in the sacred pages of Scripture.
In Deuteronomy 7:6 Moses told Israel this: For you are a people holy to the Lord your God. The Lord your God has chosen you out of all the peoples on the face of the earth to be His people, His treasured possession.
In Exodus 19:5, the Lord instructed Moses to tell Israel that although the whole earth is His, believing Israel will be for Him a kingdom of priests and a holy nation. Peter echoed this thought in 1 Peter 2:9. Addressing the elect and contrasting them from those who rejected Christ he said, But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into this wonderful light.
Paul tells us that God chose us in Christ even before the creation of the world (Ephesians 1:4). Peter builds on this thought by telling us that we have been chosen according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through the sanctifying work of the Spirit (1Peter 1:2). Paul continues to say that in Christ we were chosen according to the plan of Him who works out everything in conformity with the purpose of His will (Ephesians 1:11). And in Romans 11:5, Paul adds further that we have been chosen by grace.
We can conclude by putting these truths together that the three persons of the Godhead were involved in the matter of choosing a people for Himself. They did so in their eternal state; before time began. The Father did the choosing. The chosen ones were to be placed in the Son by grace (meaning not by merits or works of them who were chosen) and be given eternal life (John 17:3). And the task of separating the chosen ones from the rest of the world rested on the Holy Spirit.
We can conclude then that God has a plan and a purpose that involves His people. And everything that happens in their life takes place in accordance to what the Godhead has already agreed amongst themselves even before time was set in motion.
The Old Testament reveals to us that God had chosen Israel for Himself with whom He entered into a covenant. The covenant keepers received blessings. On the other hand, the covenant breakers suffered reverses. Israel was God’s chosen people in the physical sense through whom salvation would come to all people of the earth.
The New Testament reveals to us that God had chosen a people for Himself – in the spiritual sense – before the foundation of the world to be the object of His unconditional love, mercy and grace. God sent His Son, Jesus, to save His helpless people from their sins. This is the covenant of grace entered into by the Triune God amongst themselves.
A person can know that he is among God’s elect through his faith in Jesus Christ.