From the pen of Dr. Sam Jones
“Reasons to rejoice” has been the theme for the various devotional thoughts for the month of January. The devotional thought for today will explore Peter’s nineteenth reason for Christians to be glad, to be happy or to have “joy inexpressible.” We are to be at peace and with joy because we are able to “make our calling and election sure” (2 Pet. 1:10). What a comforting thought! If we comply with Scripture or the will of God, it’s possible to make certain an entrance into the “everlasting kingdom” (v. 11). The everlasting kingdom of verse 11 is most likely the “heavenly kingdom” that Paul writes about in 2 Timothy 4:18. This everlasting kingdom is heaven itself.
Peter exhorts Christians to live a happy life, a worry-free life because it’s possible to make your salvation sure. Earlier in this chapter, Peter pleads with all Christians to rejoice because we have accessibility to some “exceedingly great and precious promises” (2 Pet. 1:4). Let us not forget one of those precious promises is an inheritance reserved in heaven. We are told that there are things we can do to make this “calling and election” certain. Paul declares in 2 Thessalonians 2:14 that the “calling” refers to people being “called” by God into a relationship with Him by the gospel. Those who answer the “call of the gospel” become the “elect or chosen of God.” The “elect of God” are those who have been predestined by God to be saved (cf. Rom. 8:30). This plan, according to Paul, was predetermined before the world was created (Eph. 1:4-10).
In verse 10, Peter is not advocating that God has selected or predetermined specific individuals to be saved. God has predetermined the plan or the condition whereby people can be saved. There are clearly two truths that Peter is stating in this verse. First, salvation is conditional; there is absolutely something in which all people must obey to become God’s elect. They must obey the gospel (2 Thess. 2:14). Second, there are no people saved who are once saved always saved. Paul clearly states in Philippians 2:12 that to remain in a saved condition demands some efforts on our part. The effort according to Jesus is that we must continue in His word (Jo. 8:31). Furthermore, Paul affirms that it’s possible to “fall from grace” or from a saved condition (Gal. 5:14). In 2 Peter 2:20-22, Peter explains people can “escape the pollution of this world;” those who escape are translated into the kingdom of Christ where the saved people are (Acts 2:47; Col. 1:13). Then he describes what can happen to those who are saved or who have answered the “call” by comparing them to two animals: dogs and pigs. He uses these two animals to refer to people who have been saved, but left or returned to their former lifestyles; thus putting them in an unsaved condition.
But Christians can rejoice and be happy because it’s possible for people who have obeyed the “call of the gospel” to make their election sure. “If”, of the verse, implies conditional; if the saved put forth the necessary effort, they can guarantee a home in the everlasting kingdom. This is truly a comforting reason for Christians to rejoice and be happy. We can “make our calling and election sure”!