We Must Know That Predestination
Planned within Godís Righteousness
< Romans 9:9-33 >
ďFor this is the word of promise: ĎAt this
time I will come and Sarah shall have a son.í And not only this, but when Rebecca
also had conceived by one man, even by our father Isaac (for the children not
yet being born, nor having done any good or evil, that the purpose of God according
to election might stand, not of works but of Him who calls), it was said to
her, ĎThe older shall serve the younger.í As it is written, ĎJacob I have loved,
but Esau I have hated.í What shall we say then? Is there unrighteousness with
God? Certainly not! For He says to Moses, ĎI will have mercy on whomever I will
have mercy, and I will have compassion on whomever I will have compassion.í
So then it is not of him who wills, nor of him who runs, but of God who shows
mercy. For the Scripture says to the Pharaoh, ĎFor this very purpose I have
raised you up, that I may show My power in you, and that My name may be declared
in all the earth.í Therefore He has mercy on whom He wills, and whom He wills
He hardens. You will say to me then, ĎWhy does He still find fault? For who
has resisted His will?í But indeed, O man, who are you to reply against God?
Will the thing formed say to him who formed it, ĎWhy have you made me like this?í
Does not the potter have power over the clay, from the same lump to make one
vessel for honor and another for dishonor? What if God, wanting to show His
wrath and to make His power known, endured with much longsuffering the vessels
of wrath prepared for destruction, and that He might make known the riches of
His glory on the vessels of mercy, which He had prepared beforehand for glory,
even us whom He called, not of the Jews only, but also of the Gentiles? As He
says also in Hosea:
ĎI will call them My people, who were not My
And her beloved, who was not beloved.í
ĎAnd it shall come to pass in the place where it was said to them,
ĎYou are not My people,í
There they shall be called sons of the living God.í
Isaiah also cries out concerning Israel:
ĎThough the number of the children of Israel be as the sand of the sea,
The remnant will be saved.
For He will finish the work and cut it short in righteousness,
Because the LORD will make a short work upon the earth.í
And as Isaiah said before:
ĎUnless the LORD of Sabaoth had left us a seed,
We would have become like Sodom,
And we would have been made like Gomorrah.í
What shall we say then? That Gentiles, who
did not pursue righteousness, have attained to righteousness, even the righteousness
of faith; but Israel, pursuing the law of righteousness, has not attained to
the law of righteousness. Why? Because they did not seek it by faith, but as
it were, by the works of the law. For they stumbled at that stumbling stone.
As it is written:
ĎBehold, I lay in Zion a stumbling stone and
rock of offense,
And whoever believes on Him will not be put to shame.íĒ
What is the true predestination planned by God?
Let us now turn our attention to what Ďpredestination
planned by Godí is. In order to understand precisely what predestination is,
we must regard the written Word as Godís Word, and correct ourselves if there
is anything wrong in our faiths. For this, we must first understand why God
loved Jacob while He hated Esau. We also need to find out whether or not the
contemporary Christian understanding of predestination deviates from the Scripture.
We must all have an accurate understanding of the predestination established
To receive blessings from God, we Christians need
to find out how Godís predestination fits into His plan. When thinking of Godís
plan, many contemporary Christians think that their destinies were predetermined
before their births, without any relevance to their faiths, as if the fates
of Jacob and Esau were unconditionally and unilaterally determined by God. But
this is not the case. Whether we are loved by God or not is determined by whether
we believe in His righteousness or not. This is the truth that God has given
to us in His plan.
If you want to correctly understand Godís predestination, you
need to throw away your own thinking and focus on the righteousness of God
Because many people cannot think of and believe
in the righteousness of God manifested through Jesus Christ, they tend to think
of Godís love in whatever way that they may choose, and some even think that
Godís love is not just. They must realize that this is not the right way to
think. We need to cast away our wrongly arrived convictions of faith by not
considering Godís righteous plan, manifested through Jesus Christ. If you simply
think that God loves some while He hates others, you must realize that this
is a wrong kind of faith, concocted by your own wrong thinking.
Human minds are plagued by mistaken thoughts.
Many contemporary Christians do not have the right faiths because their minds
are too often overflowing with wrong thoughts. This is why you need to throw
away your worthless thoughts and put your faith on the right path by following
the Word of God and believing in His righteousness.
Because predestination is planned within the righteousness
of God, it can be correctly understood and believed only when we believe in
His righteousness. We must therefore have faith in His plan and in His righteousness.
Godís plan is to clothe those who believe in His love within His righteousness
Thus, His predestination is that He would make
the believers His people by clothing them with the salvation of the remission
of sins, paid for by Jesusí baptism and His crucifixion. We must establish the
right relationship with God by having faith in the truth planned by Him within
His righteousness. God has made those who are like Jacob the objects of His
love, while He has made those who are like Esau the objects of His wrath.
Godís predestination is not that of fatalism.
Predestination within Godís plan was established
within His righteousness. Godís love is not something set arbitrarily without
any plan. If everyone was unconditionally elected before his or her birth, as
if his/her life was set by fate, how could one be delivered from sin by believing
in the righteousness of Jesus? If oneís fate was set before his/her birth in
such a way that whether or not he/she was to be loved by God was a preplanned
and predetermined outcome, who would think that God is just, and who would believe
in such a God? No one would want to believe in such an arbitrary and dictatorial
But our Godís plan is neither arbitrary nor dictatorial,
but only to deliver us from our sins within His righteousness and to make us
His people. God gave us His righteousness within this plan, and within this
righteousness of love, He gave us His forgiveness. He has prepared to clothe
those who believe in the love of His righteousness in love, and those who do
not believe in it in wrath.
I would like to say the following to those who
are resentful of Godís predestination under a misunderstanding. Godís plan is
to make us, who were created by Him, His own people. We must therefore be thankful
for His predestination. It is better for us to be the thankful people who believe
in Godís righteousness than to be the resentful ones who reproach Him. Everyone
who believes in Jesus as his/her Savior must have an accurate understanding
of and faith in Godís predestination, planned within His righteousness.
Godís true predestination was established by Him who calls
Todayís passage says, from Romans 9:9, ďFor
this is the word of promise: ĎAt this time I will come and Sarah shall have
a son.í And not only this, but when Rebecca also had conceived by one man, even
by our father Isaac (for the children not yet being born, nor having done any
good or evil, that the purpose of God according to election might stand, not
of works but of Him who calls), it was said to her, ĎThe older shall serve the
younger.í As it is written, ĎJacob I have loved, but Esau I have hated.íĒ
This passage tells us that Godís predestination
is that of love, planned within the love of Godís righteousness. As shown in
Genesis 18:10, although it was humanly impossible for Sarah to bear a child,
Abraham believed in Godís promise because He had given His word. This is how
God justified Abraham: God gave his son Isaac to him because he believed in
Him, and God approved his faith.
So when we talk about faith in the righteousness
of God, we are talking about faith in the Word of God. Our discussion of Godís
plan and predestination should also be guided by our faith in His Word. Those
who do otherwiseówhen, for instance, people confuse their pursuit of the righteousness
of God with illusions or signs they claim to have seen while praying or dreamingĖare
making a huge mistake with their faiths.
Paul further adds that, ďRebecca also had conceived
by one man, even by our father Isaac (for the children not yet being born, nor
having done any good or evil, that the purpose of God according to election
might stand, not of works but of Him who calls), it was said to her, ĎThe older
shall serve the younger.íĒ
The Scripture tells us that Isaac, having no child
of his own, prayed to God, and God answered him by giving him twins. We can
see that the predestination planned within Godís righteousness has a certain
relationship with the faiths of those who are loved by Him.
It is worth repeating verse 11 here again: ďfor
the children not yet being born, nor having done any good or evil, that the
purpose of God according to election might stand, not of works but of Him who
calls.Ē The key to understanding the truth of predestination and election
within Godís plan is that the purpose of God stands ďof Him who calls.Ē Between
Jacob and Esau, according to the predestination within Godís plan, God called
and loved Jacob.
When God calls people and loves them, in other
words, He calls and loves people who, like Jacob, are far from being righteous.
God did not call Esau, who thought of himself as righteous and was full of pride.
In Godís predestination set within His plan, it is a matter of course that God
would call and love people like Jacob. Godís purpose in calling people like
Jacob was to make sinners into His own children, free from sin. He who calls
to clothe the called in love is God, and between Jacob and Esau, he who was
called was Jacob.
We must know and believe in the righteousness
of God within His plan. Jacob represents the typical figure of a sinner to whom
God has shown His mercy within His righteousness, while Esau represents one
who turns against God by ignoring His righteous love and pursuing their own
righteousness. This is why the key to disclosing Godís Word on predestination
set within His plan is to understand that the purpose of God stands ďof Him
We must free ourselves from the illusory faiths
created by our own thoughts. God could, within His righteousness, only love
Jacob and hate Esau. Godís explanation of His plan and predestination is provided
to everyone through His declaration that the purpose of God stands ďof Him who
calls.Ē Godís plan is the truth of love fulfilled within His righteousness.
When God loved Jacob but hated Esau, the predestination was meant to fulfill
the righteousness of God, according to His plan for salvation.
It is not, as claimed by many other religions,
by good works that you are loved and saved by God, but only by believing in
His plan and His righteousness do you become His children, redeemed from your
Is God wrong?
God loves those who believe and love His righteousness.
There is, in other words, nothing wrong with the fact that our Father decided
to love and make those who believe in the righteousness of God within Jesus
Christ His children. God did not plan to love everyone in Jesus Christ, but
to love people like Jacob.
We must, then, ask ourselves whether we are like
Jacob or Esau. But even those who are full of their own good deeds and their
own righteousness still want to be loved by God, but no one can stop them from
rushing down the wrong path. So these two kinds of people are always there,
loved or hated by God even as we speak now.
We must give thanks to God and praise His glory
by believing in His righteous love and His plan for our salvation. We should
also thank Him for the fact that the gospel of the water and the Spirit, in
which we believe, wondrously reflects upon the righteousness of God. Everyone
must realize that to be clothed in Godís love, he/she must first recognize his/her
own infirmities and sins before God, and believe in His righteousness.
The problem is that many Christians, unable to
believe in Jesusí baptism and the truth of the Cross that fulfilled the righteousness
of God, wrongly believe that God loves certain people while others are simply
fated to be abandoned by Him.
Even more problematic is the unfortunate fact
that this kind of unsound faith is prevailing and being preached to others with
great conviction. It is quickly being spread; leading to more and more people
who misunderstand Godís love, shown by Godís predestination planned by Him.
What God is trying to tell us with the story of Jacob and Esau is that to become
His children, it is not human righteousness that is needed, but only the faith
in the love of Godís righteousness, predestined according to His plan.
The Scripture tells us that God gave Sarah the
son that He promised to Abraham. This tells us, even today, that only those
who have faith in the love and the Word of the righteousness of God can become
His children. To become such children, we must recognize the truth that was
given with our faiths in Godís righteousness and His plan, and to believe in
this truth, we need to believe in Godís love and His righteousness.
Jesus Christís love toward us and Godís plan for
us is the absolute truth and love given to all of us. To save us from our sins,
Jesus took upon all our sins with His baptism, died on the Cross and was resurrected
from death, all to give those of us who believe in Him eternal lives.
This truth does not mean that just by being religious
and displaying our own efforts, we can become Godís children, but it means that
the only way to become Godís children is by believing in the Word of love and
the righteousness of God, told to us and planned for us by Him. We must all
realize that only those who believe in Godís love and righteousness are clothed
in His love.
What, then, should be our disposition? To have
faith in Jesusí baptism and His blood on the Cross. We must ask God to have
mercy on us. We must recognize before Him that we do not deserve to be called
His people, for we are all sinners. We must understand that it is only through
His plan for usóthat we may know His righteous loveóthat we can become His children.
Those who are hated by God are hated because they
do not need or believe in His love and righteousness. We must therefore know
and believe in the plan of love that God has predestined for us. The clear truth
is that those who know and believe in the love of Godís righteousness will be
loved by Him, while those who reject and repudiate His love will be hated by
Who can receive the gospel of the water and the Spirit?
The gospel of the water and the Spirit given to
us by God is the only truth that reveals His righteousness. What kind of people,
then, are those who receive this truth into their hearts? These are the people
who, recognizing that their destinies lie in eternal damnation and that they
are sinners before God and His Word, ask for His mercy. ďI am a sinner, Lord,
who cannot live by Your laws at all. I give up my heart and surrender to You.Ē
These are the people to whom God has granted the remission of sins of His love
in His righteousness. The faith in the gospel that manifests Godís righteousness
is of utmost importance for all sinners.
God did not give us His law so that we would follow
each and every clause of them, a fact often misunderstood by many. The purpose
of the law, rather, was to lead us to the recognition of our own sinfulness.
Why, then, do sinners attempt to follow the law? Itís because every sinnerís
instinct seeks redemption and the absolution of his/her sins.
But no one is capable of following all the laws.
The attempts were only imitations, merely instinctive mimicking, trying to cover
their sins in desperationóa faith of deception before God. Thatís why sinners
should throw away this faith of deception, turn to the faith in the righteousness
of God, and be clothed in His love.
To clothe us in this love, God sent Jesus to the
earth, who, in being baptized by John, took upon His shoulders the sins of the
world, and by bleeding on the Cross, blotted them all out. God has recognized
the faiths of those who believe in the love of His righteousness. When we are
delivered from all our sins through our faith in the gospel of water and the
Spirit, which is the fulfillment of the righteousness of God, we become clothed
in His love. This is the promised truth that God has set out for us in His plan.
God will hate those who rely only on themselves.
There are many such people around us. But you must be saved from all your sins
by believing in Jesusí baptism and His blood that have fulfilled Godís love
and His righteousness. You will then surely be clothed in Godís love, which
has been reserved for those whom He calls. People often try to do things on
their own for God to win His love and forgiveness, but these efforts are futile
without any faith in the righteousness of God.
God called only Jacob to be clothed in His love,
not Esau. Before God, Jacob was a cunning and deceitful liar, but because he
believed in Godís love and His righteousness, he became one of the fathers of
faith. We, too, must receive Godís love by believing in Jesusí baptism and His
blood on the Cross, the fulfillment of the righteousness of God, as our redemption.
Because Esau tried to be blessed by his father with his own hunting, he became
the symbol for those who could not earn Godís blessing. We need to spend some
time thinking carefully over this matter. Who in this world are like Esau? Are
we not like him?
People like Jacob are those who engross Godís
righteous love. We know that we, too, are weak and wicked, as Jacob was. God,
who has called us even before we were born to stand not by our works but by
His call, has told us to believe in His love and righteousness to receive His
love. God sent Jesus, who fulfilled the righteousness of God within His plan,
for all of us.
When God first called us, He came to call the
sinners, not the righteous. Those who are hated by Him are those who think themselves
to be full of their own righteousness and who do not believe in His merciful
love. Those who have such misled faiths are hated by God and cannot be clothed
in His love to be His people. God has predestined this truth for us in His heart.
So, Paul states definitely, ďWhat shall we say then? Is there unrighteousness
with God? Certainly not!Ē (Romans 9:14)
Those who are loved by God are those who are like Jacob
When God looks at you, are you truly the kind
of person on whom He would have mercy? What reason does God need when He has
compassion for whomever He has compassion for and hates whomever He hates? How
can we say to God that He has done us wrong?
There are a countless number of people living
on this earth. While some of them are loved by God, others are not. Does this
mean that God has wronged them?
God is also a just God who judges the sins of
those who have turned against His righteousness. We should avoid any misunderstandings
in this matter by understanding Godís plan manifested within His righteousness
with our faith in this righteousness. There are many misled Christians whose
hearts, like the Pharaoh, are hardened. These are the kind of people who are
hated by God, as the verse 17 of this chapter explains: ďFor the Scripture
says to the Pharaoh, ĎFor this very purpose I have raised you up, that I may
show My power in you, and that My name may be declared in all the earth.íĒ
We all are insufficient before God. Then, we should
not become like the Pharaoh. Should God hate us, who are as obstinate as the
Pharaoh, for not believing in Jesusí baptism and His blood on the Cross as our
redemption? Yes. People like the Pharaoh turn against God. Such people boast
of and rely on their own righteousness, but their own righteousness cannot redeem
them from their own sins.
What did the Pharaoh rely on? He trusted in and
relied on the Nile River. He thought that as long as he had its bountiful supplies
of water, everything would be just fine. This is why God hates people like the
Pharaoh. Anyone whose heart is hardened like that of the Pharaoh will be hated
and accursed by God. You must not be like him. By receiving the merciful love
that God has given you so freely, you can instead become His children.
Do you joyfully agree with Godís righteous plan?
Is your heart prepared to receive Godís righteous
love predestined for you in His plan? There are some people who, though they
believe in Jesus, suffer in anguish because they have misunderstood Godís plan.
Such people wonder, ďI believe in Jesus, but did God really elect me? If He
did not elect me, what use does my faith serve? What should I do then? I canít
just stop believing in Jesus; what can I do? I truly believe in Jesus, but what
happens if I am not in His election?Ē
They may then try to comfort themselves by thinking,
ďSince I believe in Jesus and attend church services, God must have elected
me. Surely thatís the case! Heaven will certainly have a spot for me!Ē But when
they fall into sin, they wonder again, ďGod must have not elected me! It might
be time for me to quit believing in Jesus!Ē In other words, they think by themselves,
conclude by themselves, and end everything by themselves. These people particularly
need to rethink their understanding of Godís plan and attain the right comprehension
to believe in Jesus as their Savior.
Those who believe more in theologiansí teachings
than Godís own Word, on the other hand, might say, ďDidnít God say that the
older shall serve the younger, and that He loved Jacob while He hated Esau,
even before they were born? Since we believe in Jesus now, surely we must have
been set to be saved even before our own births.Ē But the Apostle Paul tells
us that the predestination planned by God is ďto stand, not of works but
of Him who calls.Ē
Following the law does not make one Godís child.
Only by having faith in the righteousness of God and His mercy and love shown
by Jesusí baptism and His blood on the Cross can we become His children.
Because of doctrines set by theologians, many
people are unable to believe in Jesusí baptism and His blood, the manifestation
of the righteousness of God, as their salvation. Those who have heard the gospelís
love, showing His righteousness, yet do not believe in it are just like the
Pharaoh. God hates those who, without believing in the righteousness of God
revealed in Jesus Christ, try to become Godís children by believing in Jesus
according to their own tastes.
If you did not believe in Godís righteous love
shown through Jesus Christ, it is time for you to do so. Then, you will be clothed
in Godís love. We were all like Esau originally, yet we were at once saved from
our sins by believing in the love of the righteousness of God. We have received
Godís blessed love by believing in His righteousness.
God has made available, to both the Israelites
and the Gentiles, the blessing of allowing those who believe in His righteous
love to become His children. Just as God said, ďI will call them My people,
who were not My people, And her beloved, who was not beloved,Ē He has given
us the gospel of Jesusí baptism and His blood, and to those of us who believe
in it, His righteous love.
The following passage, ďAnd it shall come to
pass in the place where it was said to them, ĎYou are not My people,í There
they shall be called sons of the living God,Ē is Godís Word of love that
has been fulfilled for us today. We can thus realize that because we came so
short before God, God saved us by coming to us in flesh and making the love
of His righteousness available to us.
That you and I are saved from all our sins before
God is the redeeming love that has been planned within the righteousness of
God. To be redeemed from all our sins by believing in the love of Godís righteousness,
without hardening our hearts, can only be possible by the faith in the truth.
Except for this way of faith, there is no other way to receive the remission
of sins. We all are born with stubborn hearts, but the Word of God can win over
our hearts and our obstinacy. Our hearts would then be ruled by Godís peace.
If you believe in God, the righteousness of God will be yours.
If the gospel of the truth that contains the righteousness
of God we are preaching did not exist, everyone in this world would be facing
his or her own destruction. Without those who are spreading the gospel of the
water and the Spirit, all of mankind would have lost its hope. Were it not for
those who are clothed in Godís righteous love, the world would have already
come to its end, with everyone having been judged of their sins. But God has
left on this earth those of us who believe in the love of His righteousness.
We can be only thankful to God that He works through us, despite our many weaknesses
The faith that is clothed in the love of the righteousness
of God is the righteousness that has come from Jesusí baptism and His blood
on the Cross. The faith in the righteousness of God is found in a heart that
believes in Jesusí baptism and His blood. It is through our faiths in His righteousness
that we are delivered from our sins. This truth is the plan, predestination,
and election that God has set for us.
God has said that whoever believes in the Word
of God, which fulfills His righteousness in Jesus Christ, will be saved from
his or her sins. One faces destruction not because the righteousness of God
has not eliminated all the sins, but because in his/her hardened heart, he/she
did not believe in it.
We must make our hearts meek before the Word of
God and believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. Our hearts must kneel
before Him. We were blessed by believing in the love of the righteousness of
God. He saved us from all our sins because He had so much mercy for us. We give
thanks to Him. We who believe in the righteousness of God have nothing to be
ashamed of. On the contrary, we have every reason to be proud of His righteousness.
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That God has save us wholly from our
sins is because we have come short before Himópraise the Lord for
this salvation! To be loved by God, we must be able to believe in
Do you know this righteousness of God? If so,
then believe in it. Godís righteous love will then come to your heart. May your
faith in the love of the righteousness of God that He has planned for you be
free from misunderstanding.
May the love of redemption that God has set for
you come to your heart. Hallelujah! I give thanks to the triune God who has
made us His children in His righteousness.