This is a question I hear pretty often by people who are seriously seeking to read their Bible and grow as a follower of Jesus. And it is in the text for the Sunday sermon tomorrow. I continue to hear encouraging remarks from those who read the text ahead of time to prepare their hearts for Sunday worship. So I hope this helps you too.
Go read our text for tomorrow, 2 Peter 1:3-11 and focus especially on v.10-11. “Therefore, brothers, be all the more diligent to confirm your calling and election, for if you practice these qualities you will never fall. For in this way there will be richly provided for you an entrance into the eternal kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.”
Reading passages like this makes you ask some deep questions. “Have I been called by God.” “Did God choose me?” “How can I know if God has chosen me?” God means for us to ask these things. Do not avoid them. They are meant for our good. After all the text states that if we do confirm our election, “in this way there will be richly provided for you an entrance into the eternal kingdom.” The text was intended to give us great confidence not take it from us.
Ok, so how does one “confirm” their calling and election? First, look at the word “therefore” in v.10. It connects the “confirm” to what has been said beforehand. It is connected to v.3, “His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness.” It’s connected to “his precious and very great promises” in v.4. It is connected to the long list of qualities in v.5-7. Think it through and see the connection for yourself. Do you see it?
If you don’t see the connection, this ends up looking like the most performance-based, works gospel possible – you supply your own godliness for yourself and if you do then you can know God chose you and then you can have confidence you’ll go to heaven. But this is the opposite of Christianity. The Bible is clear. We can supply none of these things for ourselves neither can we provide our own confirmation of God’s electing us. Rather because of the sacrificial atonement, Christ took our place under God’s wrath for sin and gave to believers His perfect righteousness and the rest of the list in v.5-7.
So we confirm our election by answering these questions, “Am I trusting in Christ’s atonement?” “Am I trusting that His divine power has given me all I need for life and godliness?” “Am I drawing from Christ’s perfections so that virtue, knowledge, self-control, godliness, etc. is supplied to me?” If the answer is, “yes,” to these questions, then, yes, God has called and chosen me. And I can stand firm with complete confidence that I belong to God and the eternal kingdom belongs to me.
Look at it closely and think it through. Then come sing your praises to Jesus for what He’s done for us.