Thursday, March 5, 2015

Jesus' 3 Essentials and 3 Encouragements for Christians (John 14)

Scripture: John 14
Translation: John 14.1Don’t freak out [lit. your heart must not get troubled]! Believe in God and believe in Me! 2In My Father’s House, there are many rooms. And if there weren’t, I would tell you, because I’m leaving to prepare a place for you. 3And if I leave and prepare a place for you, I’m coming again and I will take you along with Me, so that wherever I am you will also be. 4And wherever I’m going, you know the way.” 5Thomas was saying to Him, “Lord, we don’t know where you’re going. How can we know the way?” 6Jesus was saying to him, “I am the Way and the Truth and the Life. No one comes to the Father, except through Me!” 7If you know Me, you will also know My Father. And from now on you do know Him and see Him!”
8Philip was saying to Him, “Lord, show us the Father, and that will satisfy us.” 9Jesus said to him, “I’ve been with you for such a long time, and you don’t know Me, Philip? The person who has seen Me has seen the Father. How are you saying, ‘Show us the Father’? 10Don’t you believe that I am in the Father and the Father is in Me?  The words that I’ve been telling you I’ve not been speaking from Myself. And the Father Who stays in Me does His miracles. 11Trust me I am in the Father and the Father is in Me! And if I wasn’t, believe because of these miracles!
12Amen, Amen, I’m telling you, the person who believes in Me—that person will do the works that I’m doing and greater ones than these, because I’m going to the Father. 13And whatever you might ask in My Name, I will do it, so that the Father can be glorified in the Son. 14If you ask me for anything in My Name, I will do it. 15If you love me, you will obey my commands. 16And I will ask the Father and He will give you another Helper, so that He would be with you forever. 17The Spirit of Truth, Who the world can’t receive, because they don’t see Him and they don’t know Him. You know Him, because He stays with you and will be in you. 18I won’t leave you as orphans; I’m coming to you. 19A little while longer and the world will no longer see Me, but you will see Me, because I’m alive and you will be alive. 20On that day, you will know that I am in My Father and you are in Me and I am in you. 21The person who has My commands and obeys them—that person is the one who loves Me. And the person who loves Me will be loved by My Father, and I will love him and I will make Myself visible to him!
22Judas, not the Iscariot, was saying to Him, “Lord, what is really happening that You are about to show Yourself to us and not to the world?” 23Jesus responded and said to him, “If someone loves me, he will obey my message and my Father will love him and come to him and We will make a room for him. 24The person who doesn’t love Me doesn’t obey My words and the message that you heard isn’t Mine, instead it belongs to the Father Who sent Me. 25I really am telling you these things while I’m staying with you. 26And the Helper, the Holy Spirit, Who the Father will send in My Name—That One will teach you all things and will make you remember all the things that I told you.
27I’m leaving peace for you. I’m giving you My Peace. I’m not giving you just like the world would gives. Don’t freak out and don’t chicken out. 28You’ve heard that I told you “I’m going and I’m coming to you. If you love Me, you should rejoice that I’m going to the Father, because the Father is greater than Me! 29And now I really am telling you before it happens, so that whenever it happens you would believe. 30I’m not going to speak with you about many things any longer, because the ruler of the world is coming. And he has nothing in common with Me. 31Instead, so that the world might know that I love the Father, and that I’m doing exactly as the Father commanded Me, get up, let’s get away from here.

a.       Love
b.      Obedience
c.       The Spirit
d.      Not fearing
e.       The return of Christ
f.       Going to the Father
g.      The word/message of Christ
h.      Believing
i.        World vs. the disciples
j.        Seeing vs. not seeing
k.      Preparation
a.       The Holy Trinity
b.      God answers prayers

1.      Outline
a.       Jesus gives us Three Clear Necessities in His Absence
                                                              i.      Jesus is clear. We must believe in Him.
1.      We can come to God only through Jesus.
2.      We can know God only through Jesus.
a.       We can know Christ only through the Holy Spirit.
b.      Believing in the Father requires believing in the Son and in the Holy Spirit. Jesus affirms that God is Triune. This is why it is so important to believe in the Holy Trinity, because you can’t deny One Person without denying the other Two Persons.
3.      We should believe in Him, because Christ has given us good reasons to
a.       The Doctrine of the Trinity
b.      The Message of God came through Christ
c.       The Miracles of God came through Christ
d.      The Future was foretold by Christ
                                                            ii.      Jesus is clear. We must obey Him to love Him.
1.      It is easy to say that you love Jesus, but it is often much harder to prove that you love Jesus. We need to do what Jesus has told us to do to prove that we love Him, as a sign of our love.
a.       Married couples can’t just say “I love you” they have to live “I love you”
2.      It is also easy for some people to obey Jesus’ commands without any love for Jesus. It is true that Jesus seems more concerned with love proven by obedience, but it would be just as problematic to have obedience without a heart that belongs to and longs for Jesus.
a.       Pharisees were people who obeyed God, but often had no heart for God
b.      Imagine a child who says “I’m sorry” but clearly doesn't mean it.
                                                          iii.      Jesus is clear. We must be courageous.
1.      This world can be scary. Our mission can be scary.
2.      But Jesus hasn’t called us to a life fear.
3.      Jesus has given us peace
b.      Jesus gives us Three Clear Encouragements in His Absence
                                                              i.      Jesus is clear. God the Father will answer our prayers, so we must pray in Jesus’ Name.
1.      This helps us be at peace and avoid fear, because we now have Someone to turn to when things get crazy, or chaotic. We now have Someone to turn to when we need help.
2.      We have Someone to talk to when we need to distress. But best of all, He is Someone Who can do something about it.
                                                            ii.      Jesus is clear. God the Father and Jesus will send the Holy Spirit to help us, so we must rely on Him.
1.      The Peace that Jesus gives mainly comes in the Person of the Holy Spirit.
2.      The Holy Spirit stays with us
3.      The Holy Spirit helps us.
4.      The Holy Spirit comforts us.
5.      The Holy Spirit teaches us.
6.      The Holy Spirit reminds us.
                                                          iii.      Jesus is clear. Jesus has gone to God the Father, but He will return for us, so we must have hope in His return and be ready for it.
1.      One of the main hopes that Jesus leaves us with is that even though He is in Heaven with the Father right now, that is not the end of the story
2.      He is getting places ready for each of us who trust in Him, places where we will live with God in glorious peace forever
3.      He is coming back to get us

4.      We will one day see the glorious relationship of the Trinity more clearly, and enjoy our relationship with Him forever.

Jesus is our Model of Service and Love (John 13)

Scripture: John 13
Translation: John 13.1Before the Feast of Passover, Jesus, because He knew that His time had come to move from this world to His Father, because He loved His own people who were in the world, He loved them. 2(And by the time dinner occurred the devil had already filled Judas’ heart, so that Judas son of Simon Iscariot would betray Him.) 3Because He knew that The Father gave all things to Him, into His hands, and that He came from God and was going to God, 4 He got up from the dinner and took off His outer-clothes and took a towel and tied it around Himself. 5Then He was putting water into the foot-washing bowl and began to wash the feet of the followers and to dry them off with the towel that was tied around Him. 6Next, He was coming to Simon Peter. He was saying to Him, “Lord, are You going to wash my feet? 7Jesus responded and said to him, “You don’t know what I’m doing right now, but you will understand later [lit. after these things].” 8Peter was saying to Him, “No way are You ever going to wash my feet!” Jesus replied to him, “If I don’t wash you, you have no share with Me!” 9Simon Peter was saying to Him, “Lord, not just my feet but also my hands and my head!” 10Jesus was saying to Him, “The person who’s bathed doesn’t need anything except to get the feet washed. Instead, he is completely clean. And you guys are clean, but not all of you.” 11You see, He knew the person who would betray Him. Because of this, He said, “Not all of you are clean.” 12Then, when He had washed their feet and took His outer-clothes and sat back down, He said to them, “Do you know what I just did for you? 13You’re calling Me, ‘The Teacher’ and ‘The Lord’ and you’re speaking well, because I am. 14So, if I wash your feet—‘the Lord’ and ‘the Teacher’—then you should wash one another’s feet, 15because I gave an example to you, so that just like I did for you, you can also be doing. 16Amen, Amen, I’m telling you, a slave is not greater than his master, and neither is the representative greater than the person who sent him. 17Since you know these things, you are blessed if you do them!
18It’s not that I’m talking about all of you. I know I chose some, but so that the Bible might be fulfilled: “The person eating My bread has raise his heel against Me.” 19From the beginning I’ve been telling you about it before it happens, so that you would believe whenever it does happen that I AM. 20Amen, Amen, I’m telling you, whoever who receives anyone I send receives Me. And the person who receives Me receives the One Who sent Me.” 21After saying these things, Jesus was upset in His spirit and testified and said, “Amen, Amen, I’m telling you that one of you will betray Me!” 22The followers were looking at one another wondering who He was talking about. 23One of His followers was lounging at Jesus’ chest, who Jesus loved. 24So, Simon Peter was nodding at this person to ask who it might be that He was talking about. 25So, leaning over towards Jesus’ chest in this way that person was saying to Him, “Lord, who is it?” 26Jesus responded, “That person is the one for whom I dip a piece of bread and give it to him.” Then dipping a piece of bread He gave it to Judas son of Simon Iscariot. 27And after [taking] the piece of bread, at that moment Satan went into that person. So Jesus was saying to him, “what you’re doing, do it quickly.” 28None of the people sitting there understood why He said this to him, 29because some were thinking, “It is since Judas has the money-bag that Jesus is telling him “buy some things we need for the Feast, or it is for the poor people, so that he would give something. 30So taking the piece of bread, that person left immediately. And it was night.
31So when he left, Jesus was saying, “Now the Son of Man is glorified and God is glorified in Him! 32And God will glorify Himself in Him and immediately He will glorify Him! 33Dear children, I’m with you for a little bit longer. You will look for Me, and just I said to the Jews that where I’m going you can’t come, and I’m telling you know. 34I’m giving you a new command, namely that you should love one another, just like I loved you so that you would also love one another. 35By the following all people will know that you are My followers: if you have love for one another.” 36Simon Peter was saying to Him, “Lord, where are You going?” Jesus replied, “Where I’m going you can’t follow Me now, but you will follow later.” 37Peter was saying to Him, “Lord, why can’t I follow You now? I’ll give up my life for You! 38Jesus responded, “Will you give up your life for Me? Amen, Amen, I’m telling you: There’s no way the rooster will crow until you deny me three times!”

1.      Structure
a.       Narrative Frame (vv.1-2)
b.      Jesus washes feet
                                                              i.      Jesus loves and serves His followers by washing their feet (vv.3-11)
                                                            ii.      Jesus explains His service as a model of love and service to follow (vv.12-17)
c.       Jesus prophesies and identifies His betrayer (vv.18-30)
d.      Jesus prophesies His glory, departure, and His denial by Peter (vv.31-38)
2.      Themes
a.       Love
b.      Service
c.       Humility
d.      Father and Son
e.       Glory
f.       Betrayal
g.      Denial
h.      Prophecy/knowledge of the future
i.        Believing in Jesus as Yahweh
j.        Following, going, departure
k.      Commanding
3.      Doctrines
a.       Jesus is omniscient
b.      Jesus is humble, loving, and serving
c.       Jesus is fully man, having fully human emotions
d.      Jesus is God’s Son
e.       Jesus is glorified
f.       Jesus is our model of love, humility, and service
g.      Satan can possess people and lead them to do evil things

1.      Outline
a.       We must follow Jesus as our Model of Service
                                                              i.      We must serve our loved ones
                                                            ii.      We must serve our enemies
                                                          iii.      We must serve the people who deserve it
                                                          iv.      We must serve the people who don’t deserve it
                                                            v.      We must serve others even if we are the ones who deserve to be served
b.      We must follow Jesus as our Model of Love
                                                              i.      We must love actively the people who love us, who we love
                                                            ii.      We must love actively the people who don’t love us, who perhaps we don’t love
                                                          iii.      We must love believers, because our love shows the world we follow Jesus
c.       We must follow Jesus as our Model of Obedience
                                                              i.      We must obey God even when it costs us
                                                            ii.      We must obey God in hope of glory
d.      We must worship Jesus as our Omniscient Lord
                                                              i.      We must worship Jesus because He is God, and His knowledge of the future, shows us that He is worthy of worship.
                                                            ii.      We must worship Jesus, because He is loves us and has served us
e.       We must trust Jesus as our Omniscient Lord
                                                              i.      We must trust Jesus because His prophecies show us that He is God and that what He says is true
                                                            ii.      We must trust Jesus, because His love and service reveal that He is trustworthy
                                                          iii.      We must trust Jesus, because physical closeness to Christ doesn’t guarantee a love or loyalty to Christ
1.      Jesus knows who is really a Christian and who isn’t, but we often do not know.
2.      We often don’t find out until a supposed Christian betrays Jesus
a.       However, even in betrayal, a persona can still be a true Christian like Peter, but has failed greatly at following. The difference is at the heart level and whether Christ comes to pick the failed person back up and on the path of following Him.
2.      Discussion Questions
a.       Who is it easy for you to serve? Why? Who is it not easy for you to serve? Why?
b.      Who is it easy for you to love? Why? Who is it not easy for you to love? Why?
c.       Have you ever loved or served someone who has betrayed you?
d.      How could you serve the other people in our church? How could our church serve you?
e.       Do you feel loved by the people in our group? Why or why not?
f.       Does Jesus’ knowledge of the future help you believe in Him as your Lord and Savior? Why or why not?
g.      Name one Christian and one non-Christian that you can share the love of Christ with this week.

1.      ISIS Victims’ Brother Forgives ISIS
2.      Undercover Boss
3.      The CEO telling the maid, “you don’t need to clean my house this time, I will clean your house.”

4.      Jesus is not like a fortune teller with a Crystal ball

Why Salvation by Grace Alone through Faith Alone in Christ Alone Matters (Eph. 2.1-10; et al.)

Scripture: Deut. 7.7-11; John 6.60-71; Rom. 9-11; Gal. 1.6-9; Gal. 2.15-21; Gal. 3.1-14; Eph. 2.1-10; 2 Tim. 1.9-10; Acts 4.8-12
Translation: Eph. 2.1And you, who were dead in your rebellions and sins, 2in those sins you lived at that time according to the age of this world, according to the ruler of the authority of the air, the spirit of the one who is right now working in the sons of disobedience, in those rebellions we all also lived at that time in the desires of the our flesh, acting on the wants of the flesh and of the mind, and we were innately children of wrath, just like everyone else. 4But God Who is He is rich in mercy because of His abundant love that He loved us with, 5and us who were dead in rebellions He made alive with Christ—by grace you really are saved—6and He raised us with Him and seated us with Christ Jesus in the heavenly places, 7so that He could prove in the coming ages the infinite riches of His grace via His benevolence on us in Christ Jesus. 8You see, by grace you really are saved through faith. And this is not from you, it’s God’s gift. 9It is not from actions, so that no one can boast. 10You see, we are His work, created in Christ Jesus  for good works, which God prearranged, so that we would walk in them.
2 Tim. 1.9[God] Who saved us and called us to a holy calling—not because of our actions, but instead because of His Own plan and grace, given to us in Christ Jesus before the beginning of time, 10and revealed now through the arrival of our Savior Christ Jesus, who destroyed death and brought life and immortality to light through the Gospel.
Gal.1.6I’m shocked that you have turn away so quickly from the One Who called you by grace to another gospel, 7which isn’t another gospel, although some are commanding you and wanting to change the Gospel of Christ. 8Instead, even in we or an angel from heaven evangelizes you away from what we have evangelized to you, may he be cursed to hell. 9As we already truly told you and now I am telling you again: If anyone evangelizes you away from what you’ve received, may he be cursed to hell.
Gal. 2.15We, Jews by nature and not from the nations are sinners, 16and knowing that a person is not made righteous by actions of the Law, only by faith in Jesus Christ, and we have believed in Christ Jesus, so that we might be made righteous by faith in Christ and not by actions of the Law, because all flesh is not made righteous by actions of the Law. 17Moreover, if by seeking to be made righteous in Christ we are found  also [to be] sinners ourselves, then is Christ a servant of sin? NO WAY! 18You see, if what I build back up exactly the same things as I destroyed, I am making myself deceived. 19You see, I am died through the law to the law, so that I could live for God! I’ve truly been crucified with Christ! 20Moreover, I no longer live, but Christ lives in me! And what I live the flesh now, I live by faith that is in the Son of God Who loves me and gave Himself up for me! 21I won’t nullify the grace of God! You see, if righteousness was through the law, then Christ died for nothing.
Gal. 3.1O you stupid Galatians! Who has cast a spell on you, to whom Jesus the Messiah was already written before your eyes as truly crucified? 2I just want to find this out from you: did you get the Spirit from actions of the Law or from hearing from faith? 3You are so stupid! Will you who began by the Spirit no finish by the flesh? 4Did you learn all that stuff in vain? If indeed it is also in vain. 5So, the One who provided the Spirit to you and worked miracles among you, was He from actions of the Law or from hearing from faith?
John 6.60Then, many of His followers who heard said, “This message is tough. Who can listen to it?” 61And Jesus, knowing in Himself that His followers were grumbling about this, said to them, “Is this tripping you up? 62SO, if you look at the Son of Man coming up where was He before? 63The Spirit is the One Who makes everything alive; the flesh is not able to do anything. the words that I’m really speaking to you are Spirit and are life. 64But some of you are those who don’t believe.” (You see, Jesus knew from the beginning some were those who wouldn’t believe and who His betrayer was.) 65And He was saying, “because of this I’m telling you that no one is able to come to me unless it is granted to him by the Father.” 66Because of this many of His followers left for the things they left behind and no longer walked with Him. 67So, Jesus said to the Twelve, “You don’t want to go too, do you?” 68Simon Peter responded to Him, “Lord, who will we go to? You have the words of eternal life! 69And we really do believe and know that you are the Holy One of God!” 70Jesus responded to them, “Didn’t I choose you Twelve? And one of you is a devil.” 71And He was talking about Judas, son of Simon Iscariot, because this one was about to betray Him—one of the Twelve!
Deut. 7.7It was not because your greatness was greater than all the peoples that Yahweh loved you. And He chose you, because you were smaller than all the peoples. 8Instead, it was because Yahweh loved you and He kept the promise that He made to your forefathers. Yahweh brought you out by His strong hand and rescued you from the house of slaves from the hand of Pharaoh king of Egypt. 9You know that Yahweh your God—He is God, the Faithful God, Who keeps the covenant and loyalty to those who love and who keep His commands for a thousand generations. 10And Who personally repays the person who hates Him by destroying him. He won’t hesitate against the person who hates Him. He will personally repay him. 11So you should keep the command and the rules and the judgments that I am commanding you to do today.
Acts 4.8Then Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit, said to them, “Leaders of the people and elders, 9if we are being judged today on a good deed for a sick man, Who is this man really being saved by? 10It must be known to all of you and to all the people of Israel that in the Name of Jesus the Messiah the Nazarene, Who you crucified, Who God rose from the dead—by This Person this man stands before you healthy! 11This Person is the Stone, the One rejected by you the builders, the One Who became the Cornerstone! 12And there is salvation in no other name, because there is not even any other name under Heaven that is really is being given among them, by which it is necessary that we be saved!”


a.       Grace
b.      Faith
c.       Christ
d.      Salvation
e.       Works/effort/actions/law
f.       Holy Spirit
g.      Past vs. Present
h.      Justification/righteousness
i.        Choosing/election
j.        Predestination
k.      Life vs. Death
l.        Sin, rebellion, failure
a.       Salvation is by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone

1.      Outline
a.       We are by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone
                                                              i.      We are saved (Eph. 2.1-10)
                                                            ii.      We are saved by grace alone (Eph. 2.8-9; Rom. 9-11; Gal. 1.6-9; Gal. 2.15-21; Gal. 3.1-14; Deut. 7.7-11; 2 Tim. 1.9-10)
                                                          iii.      We are saved by grace alone through faith alone (. 2.8-9; Rom. 9-11; Gal. 1.6-9; Gal. 2.15-21; Gal. 3.1-14)
                                                          iv.      We are saved by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone (Acts 4.8-12; Eph. 2.1-10; 2 Tim. 1.9-10; Rom. 9-11; Gal. 1.6-9; Gal. 2.15-21; Gal. 3.1-14)
b.      Why does it matter that we are saved by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone
                                                              i.      It matters because we ourselves as well as everyone else need to be saved
1.      We need to be saved: so respond in faith now if you haven’t yet
2.      Others need to be saved, so bring the Gospel to the lost every chance God gives you
                                                            ii.      It matters because we must embrace the grace of God
1.      by giving up our attempts to earn salvation
2.      by giving up the attitude or mindset that says
a.       “I earned it. I deserve to be saved.”
b.      “I need to earn it. I need to deserve it.”
3.      By giving up the fear of failure
4.      By welcoming the new identity grace gives: “I am saved by grace”
5.      By welcoming the true freedom grave gives: “I am saved. I don’t have to earn it.”
6.      By welcoming the Spirit of Love, power, and clear-thinking
                                                          iii.      It matters because we must trust in Christ as the only source for our salvation
1.      By relying only on the grace of God not our effort
2.      By relying only on Christ as our Savior
a.       This means we can’t rely on good works
                                                                                                                                      i.      Our good works
                                                                                                                                    ii.      Others’ good works
b.      This means we can’t rely on Christian rituals or experiences
                                                                                                                                      i.      Baptism, circumcision, communion, etc.
                                                                                                                                    ii.      speaking in tongues, miracles, etc.
                                                                                                                                  iii.      feelings, such as feeling the presence
c.       This means we can’t rely on knowledge/intelligence
d.      This means we can’t rely on false messiahs
                                                                                                                                      i.      Money
                                                                                                                                    ii.      Fame
                                                                                                                                  iii.      Power
                                                                                                                                  iv.      Sex
                                                                                                                                    v.      Drugs
                                                                                                                                  vi.      Idols
                                                                                                                                vii.      False religions
2.      Discussion Questions
a.       Do you think people feel normally feel like they need saving? Why or why not?
b.      Talk about when you realized you needed to be saved. What happened? What made you want to be saved by God?
c.       Do you ever feel like you have to earn God’s favor? Why or why not?
d.      How much of your relationship with God comes out of faith and how much comes out of your achievements?
e.       How do you think faith and works work together in the Christian life?
f.       Where is your identity most grounded? In your relationship with God, in school, in family, in grades, in good works, in achievements, in friends, in popularity, wealthy, or somewhere else?
g.      Name some things people you know try to find salvation in. what are they trying to be saved from? And do you think what they look to for salvation will work? Why or why not? Is there any area of their life that would not be saved by the kind of salvation they’re looking for?
h.      Do you think it is possible for someone to trust more in a Christian ritual or experience than in Christ for salvation? If so, what would you say to that person?

1.      That salvation is by grace through faith in Christ is illustrated as follows. Grace is that God has provided a door in the wall, so that it is even possible to come to Him. Faith is like the key that gets you through to the other side of the door. Jesus is the door. See if we had faith, the key, but God was not a gracious God, there would be no door. We could attack the wall with the key all we wanted, but it would never get us through the wall. See if God provided the door, but no key, not matter what we tried to do to open the door, it would never open. And Jesus is the door, because if we took the key to a different door, the key would not work. That is what people do when they combine faith with the wrong door. Lots of people trust false messiahs, but no matter how much they trust them, they will never become real doors. They are like doors on theater sets that don’t go anywhere and don’t even open, they are just painted on the background.
2.      We need to be saved—sometimes people think they don’t need saving that they can handle life and death on their own, sometimes we think like that. But that’s like a person drowning in a pool. They are struggling and choking on water and sinking more and more. the lifeguard jumps in to save them, but as they fail about choking and chugging water they scream, not “Help! Save me!” but “Back off! I’m fine! I don’t need saving!” So funny story, do you know what they teach you to do in lifeguard training when you come to a person like that all wild and crazy? You just wait for them to fail, to sink, and stop struggling. You basically wait for them to drown and give up trying to work so hard at saving themselves, you wait till they are as good as dead, then you go in and rescue them and get them on to dry land. That is what it is like for the person who keeps trying to save themself. They keep thinking that they can do it, but of course they can’t. and God won’t save someone trying to save themselves, He will wait until they are out of energy to try and lost and dead in the water, and then He swoops in and saves them. Because salvation is all of God and not all from human effort. It is all by grace.

3.      Salvation by grace is the opposite of how most people choose a romantic partner. When people are looking for a husband or wife, they usually decide who they want based on all the things that make that person desirable or attractive. So a guy says, “man she’s hot and she can cook. I think we would make a good match. And I feel like she would say yes if I asked her out.” And a girl says a very similar thing: “He’s so cute and kind. He’s always so thoughtful. He has a good job. I think he would be able to provide for me and any children we could have. I think if I flirt with him a little, he will ask me out.” But that is NOT how God makes His choices. He did choose you because you were smart, or beautiful, or hardworking. He didn’t choose you because you were more Godly, more trusting, or more deserving in any way. He did not look down through time and think, “I think that person would believe in My Son if I gave them the chance.” God never thought anything like that! He said, “I pick him and her, not because they will one day be the kind of people who are likely to love Me or trust me, but because I love them, and I love them because I love them. They are the ones I choose to love. I picked them even though they deserved it least! I picked them not because one day they would deserve it, but because I love them in Christ!”