Seek Ye The Lord While He May Be Found

Ephesians 1:3-5 - Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ: 4 According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love: 5 Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will,…

Salvation is the result of God’s sovereign, Holy Spirit calling with the gospel preached by redeemed sinners.

II Corinthians 4:7 - We have this treasure in earthen vessels.

I Corinthians 1:26-29 - God has chosen the foolish things of this world.

  1. Election is in eternity (from before the foundation of the world); salvation is in time; fulness revealed in eternity.

    1. Election is not an election like an election for public office.

      1. It is not that God votes for you, Satan votes against you, and you cast the deciding vote.

      2. It is God choosing you unto Himself; nobody is voting against you.

      3. You are not eligible to vote, and Satan isn’t eligible to vote; God will cast the deciding vote.

    2. Ephesians 1:4 - We are chosen in Christ before the foundation of the world.

      1. Just because God has elected some to salvation doesn’t mean that lost sinners are not supposed to humble themselves, seek His face, and trust in Him.

      2. It must be remembered that God hasn’t elected anybody to eternal destruction.

        1. They are going there of their own choosing.

        2. They are willingly following the leadership of the first sinner, Adam.

  1. Various views of election.

    1. Some believe election is not in the Bible.

      1. The word doesn’t mean what it says.

      2. Followers of Jacabus Armininius, commonly called Arminians.

        1. Conditional Election - Election is based on the faith or belief of men.

        2. Universal Atonement - The atonement is for all, but only believers enjoy its benefits.

        3. Saving Faith - Man, unaided by the Holy Spirit, is unable to come to God.

        4. Resistable Grace - The drawing of the Holy Spirit can be resisted.

        5. Uncertainty of Preservation - This doctrine was left open to inquiry.

    2. Some believe election takes the place of salvation, working for Christ, and the sinner coming.

      1. Hardshells, primitive, Old School.

      2. Anti-missionary, some to know salvation – no repentance and faith in Christ, as God does all that.

    3. Calvinists – followers of John Calvin a Presbyterian.

      1. After Calvin died, the acrostic TUPLIP was developed to explain their doctrines.

        1. T = Total Depravity - Man is completely a sinner, without any hope of helping himself.

        2. U = Unconditional Election - God elected saints to salvation when they had no merit at all. God did not look down upon the earth and see some sinners believing, therefore elected them to salvation, but He looked down upon the earth, and saw all were sinners, therefore elected some to salvation.

        3. L = Limited Atonement - The atonement is limited to the elect.

        4. I = Irresistible Grace - It is impossible for a sinner to resist salvation once the Holy Spirit begins drawing him.

        5. P = Preservation - A saved person will be saved forever, and will live a holy and Godly life.

      2. IBC is not a Calvinists church, we are not Presbyterian, but Baptists.

    4. God looked into the future, saw those that would believe and elected them to salvation.

      1. There is no scripture at all for this viewpoint.

      2. If you believe this viewpoint before you began to search the scriptures for the answer, then you can “read into” the scriptures what you want them to say.

      3. Remember, the scripture is not for any private interpretation, but scripture interprets scripture.

    5. God looked into the future, saw that nobody would believe, therefore elected some to salvation.

      1. Psalm 14:2-3 - The passage that states that God looked into the future upon the children of men to see who would believe. Nobody believes, therefore God must elect some.

      2. John 15:16-19 - We have not chosen God, but He has chosen us, and ordained us to bring forth good fruit. The world hates us because God has chosen us out of the world.

      3. Ephesians 2:1-3 - God quickened us when we were His enemies, walking according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air.

      4. Titus 3:1-5 - We were also in sin, just like everybody else, until God came to us and made us what we are today.

  1. Lost sinners must trust Christ to be saved. This is where “seeking the Lord while He may be found” comes in.

    1. Ephesians 1:13-14 - These lost people had to trust Christ after they heard the gospel of their salvation.

    2. Colossians 1:6 - There was a day when the believers at Colosse heard the gospel and believed.

    3. John 6:44-45 - The only time a lost sinner can come to Christ is when God calls Him.

      1. If God is calling you, don’t hesitate, but come to Him now.

      2. Salvation is in the hand of the Lord, not your hand.

      3. You can’t “decide” to be saved when you want to; it must be at God’s initiative.

  1. Isaiah 55:6 - Seek ye the LORD while he may be found, call ye upon him while he is near:

    1. If God tells Israel they ought to seek him while He may be found, can we say there will be a time when God will hide Himself from them?

    2. II Chronicles 7:14 - If my my face...forgive...heal their land.

      1. This verse states that God will hear and answer the prayer of His people to restore their land.

      2. If God’s people fail to pray, will he destroy their land?

        1. II Chronicles 7:19-22 - God will destroy that which He would have blessed.

        2. A prayer makes all the difference in the outcome.

      3. The conclusion is that a person who is away from God (whether this person is lost or saved and rebellious) will humble themselves and pray and seek the Lord while He may be found, God will hear and “adjust” the outcome accordingly.

      4. The history of Israel proves this to be so.

    3. Isaiah 1:18 – Come now, and let us reason together, saith the LORD: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.

      1. John 5:39-40 - 39 Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me. 40 And ye will not come to me, that ye might have life.

      2. Matthew 11:28-30 - Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.