Who are God’s chosen people today?

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By BibleAsk Team


The concept of God’s chosen people has been a significant theme throughout the Bible. Initially, the Jewish nation was selected to represent God on earth, as seen in Isaiah 43:10. However, due to unbelief and hardness of heart, which culminated in the crucifixion of Jesus Christ, this favored position transitioned. Today, according to the New Testament, anyone who accepts Jesus as their personal Savior becomes one of God’s chosen people.

The Jewish Nation as God’s Chosen People

Old Testament Foundation

God chose the Jewish nation to be His representatives on earth. This choice was based on His covenant with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, and was reaffirmed through Moses and the giving of the Law.

  • Isaiah 43:10 (NKJV): “You are My witnesses,” says the Lord, “And My servant whom I have chosen, that you may know and believe Me, and understand that I am He. Before Me there was no God formed, nor shall there be after Me.”

This verse highlights Israel’s role as God’s chosen witnesses, a people meant to reveal God’s nature and sovereignty to the world.

The Covenant with Abraham

God’s covenant with Abraham was foundational for Israel’s identity as God’s chosen people.

  • Genesis 12:1-3 (NKJV): “Now the Lord had said to Abram: ‘Get out of your country, from your family and from your father’s house, to a land that I will show you. I will make you a great nation; I will bless you and make your name great; and you shall be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you, and I will curse him who curses you; and in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed.'”

This covenant established Israel as a nation through which God would work to bless all the families of the earth.

Israel’s Unbelief and Hardness of Heart

Despite their chosen status, Israel often struggled with unbelief and disobedience. This persistent disobedience ultimately led to their rejection of Jesus Christ.

  • Romans 10:21 (NKJV): “But to Israel He says: ‘All day long I have stretched out My hands to a disobedient and contrary people.'”

Paul laments Israel’s rejection and murder of Jesus, highlighting their disobedience and resistance to God’s outreach.

The Transition to a New Covenant

Jesus Christ and the New Covenant

Jesus Christ’s life, death, and resurrection marked the establishment of a new covenant, extending the opportunity to become God’s chosen people to all who believe in Him.

  • Luke 22:20 (NKJV): “Likewise He also took the cup after supper, saying, ‘This cup is the new covenant in My blood, which is shed for you.'”

This new covenant, sealed by Jesus’ sacrifice, opened the way for both Jews and Gentiles to enter into a relationship with God through faith in Christ.

The Role of Faith in the New Covenant

Faith in Jesus Christ, rather than ethnic lineage, became the defining characteristic of God’s chosen people.

  • Romans 9:6-8 (NKJV): “But it is not that the word of God has taken no effect. For they are not all Israel who are of Israel, nor are they all children because they are the seed of Abraham; but, ‘In Isaac your seed shall be called.’ That is, those who are the children of the flesh, these are not the children of God; but the children of the promise are counted as the seed.”

Paul explains that true children of God are those who share in the faith of Abraham, not merely his physical descendants.

The New Chosen People: Believers in Christ

The Universal Call

The New Testament emphasizes that God’s chosen people are now those who accept Jesus Christ, transcending ethnic boundaries.

  • Galatians 3:28-29 (NKJV): “There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus. And if you are Christ’s, then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.”

This passage underscores the inclusivity of God’s new chosen people, uniting all believers in Christ.

The Chosen People: A Royal Priesthood

Believers in Christ are described as a royal priesthood, a holy nation, echoing the language once used for Israel.

  • 1 Peter 2:9 (NKJV): “But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light.”

Peter redefines the concept of God’s chosen people, applying it to the community of believers in Jesus.

The Body of Christ

The New Testament frequently refers to the community of believers as the Body of Christ, emphasizing unity and mutual support.

  • 1 Corinthians 12:12-13 (NKJV): “For as the body is one and has many members, but all the members of that one body, being many, are one body, so also is Christ. For by one Spirit we were all baptized into one body—whether Jews or Greeks, whether slaves or free—and have all been made to drink into one Spirit.”

This metaphor highlights the interconnectedness and diversity of God’s chosen people, united by faith in Christ.

The Implications of Being God’s Chosen People Today

A Call to Holiness and Service

Being part of God’s chosen people carries with it a call to holiness and service.

  • Ephesians 2:10 (NKJV): “For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.”

Believers are called to live out their faith through good works, reflecting God’s character to the world.

A Witness to the Nations

God’s chosen people are called to be witnesses to His grace and truth, continuing the mission that was once Israel’s.

  • Matthew 28:19-20 (NKJV): “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”

The Great Commission extends the call to be God’s witnesses to all believers, emphasizing the global mission of the church.

Unity in the Body of Christ

The diversity within the body of Christ is a testament to the universal nature of God’s call, fostering unity among believers from all backgrounds.

  • Ephesians 4:4-6 (NKJV): “There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called in one hope of your calling; one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.”

This passage stresses the importance of unity within the diverse body of believers, unified by their faith in Christ.

Conclusion

In summary, the concept of God’s chosen people has transitioned from the Jewish nation to encompass all who believe in Jesus Christ. The Old Testament established Israel as God’s chosen people, but their persistent unbelief and rejection and murder of Jesus led to a shift in this favored position.

The New Testament reveals that through faith in Jesus Christ, all people—regardless of ethnic background—can become part of God’s chosen people. This new identity is marked by a call to holiness, service, and witness, reflecting the inclusive and transformative nature of the new covenant.

By understanding and embracing this identity, believers can live out their faith in ways that honor God and fulfill His purposes on earth. The transition from the old covenant to the new covenant highlights God’s desire for a relationship with all humanity, made possible through the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Through this relationship, believers are empowered to live as God’s chosen people, united in their diversity and committed to His mission.

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In His service,
BibleAsk Team

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