“But we are bound to give thanks always to God for you, brethren beloved of the Lord, because God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth” ~ 2 Thessalonians 2:13
“There are three things here which deserve special attention. First, the fact that we are expressly told that God’s elect are “chosen to salvation”: Language could not be more explicit. How summarily do these words dispose of the sophistries and equivocations of all who would make election refer to nothing but external privileges or rank in service! It is to “salvation” itself that God has chosen us.
Second, we are warned here that election unto salvation does not disregard the use of appropriate means: salvation is reached through “sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth” It is not true that because God has chosen a certain one to salvation that he will be saved willy-nilly, whether he believes or not: nowhere do the Scriptures so represent it. The same God who “chose unto salvation”, decreed that His purpose should be realized through the work of the spirit and belief of the truth.
Third, that God has chosen us unto salvation is a profound cause for fervent praise. Note how strongly the apostle express this – “we are bound to give thanks always to God for you, brethren beloved of the Lord, because God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation”, etc.
Instead of shrinking back in horror from the doctrine of predestination, the believer, when he sees this blessed truth as it is unfolded in the Word, discovers a ground for gratitude and thanksgiving such as nothing else affords, save the unspeakable gift of the Redeemer Himself.”
~ Arthur Pink “Chosen Unto Salvation”
Born in Nottingham, England in 1886, Arthur Walkington Pink was converted to Christ while a spiritualist medium. He briefly attended the Moody Bible Institute in Chicago, Illinois, in 1910, before taking up his first pastorate at Silverton, Colorado. Little-known to the outside world, he pastored other churches in the United States and Australia before finally returning to his homeland in 1934. Settling in Stornoway on the Isle of Lewis, Scotland, there he died almost unnoticed in 1952. By that date, however, the magazine he had started in 1922 – Studies in the Scriptures – was feeding several of the men who were leading a return to doctrinal Christianity, including Martyn Lloyd-Jones and Douglas Johnson (founder of Inter-Varsity) and, in book form after his death, his writings became very widely read across the world. The Trust publishes his The Sovereignty of God, Gleanings from Paul, Profiting from the Word, The Life of Elijah, and a number of titles which have been translated into Spanish.
[See also Iain H. Murray’s biography of Pink – The Life of Arthur W. Pink.]