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Thursday, June 19, 2008

God's Strange Choices

How odd for God to choose the Jews? How odd for God to choose . . . you?

God, it seems, makes some strange choices. If you don’t believe that, just take a quick glance in a mirror or look around the room next Sunday when you go to church! One look should prove my point! Or, if you still need convincing, consider the choices he made when he called his Twelve Disciples. That He’s the one who did the deciding is beyond question. Mark 3:13-14 says that “he summoned those whom He Himself wanted” and then “appointed the Twelve to be with Him that He might send them out to preach.” The emphasis here is on the fact that He Himself did this. He chose those he wanted to be with Him. So let’s think about some of His choices.

First there’s Simon Peter. Peter is his nickname. It means “rock.” Some think Jesus gave it to him because he was so steadfast in his faith. The truth is, he was anything but. He could be impulsive, unstable, unsure of himself, and when push came to shove, he even denied Jesus. No, by naming Peter “the Rock” Jesus was not telling us about Peter, He was telling us about Himself and what He is able to do with such an unstable man.

And then there’s James and John. “Son’s of Thunder” Jesus called them. Impetuous, hard to get along with. Ready to call down fire on those who opposed them. And yet before Jesus is through, one will lay down his life for Christ (James), while the other becomes known as “the apostle of love” (John). There is power in His gentle grace!

And then consider Simon the Zealot and Matthew the tax collector. If ever two men should not have been brought together, it was these two. Zealots believed all tax collectors were traitors and therefore worthy of death; and tax collectors feared the Zealots who wanted to kill them. And yet here, in the power of Christ, these two men found a reason to love one another as brothers.

How odd for God to choose such a crew. But Christian, aren’t you glad He’s chosen you? May we live to the praise of His glorious grace!

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