The Scripture speaks (1) of the election of individuals to office or to honour and privilege, e.g., Abraham, Jacob, Saul, David, Solomon, were all chosen by God for the positions they held; so also were the apostles. (2) There is also an election of nations to special privileges, e.g., the Hebrews (Deut. 7:6; Rom. 9:4). (3) But in addition there is an election of individuals to eternal life (2-Thess 2:13; Eph. 1:4; 1-Pet 1:2; John 13:18).
The ground of this election to salvation is the good pleasure of God (Eph. 1:5, Eph. 1: 11; Matt. 11:25, Matt. 11: 26; John 15:16, John 15: 19). God claims the right so to do (Rom. 9:16, Rom. 9: 21).
It is not conditioned on faith or repentance, but is of soverign grace (Rom. 11:4; Eph. 1:3). All that pertain to salvation, the means (Eph. 2:8; 2-Thess 2:13) as well as the end, are of God (Acts 5:31; 2-Tim 2:25; 1-Cor 1:30; Eph. 2:5, Eph. 2: 10). Faith and repentance and all other graces are the exercises of a regenerated soul; and regeneration is God's work, a "new creature."
Men are elected "to salvation," "to the adoption of sons," "to be holy and without blame before him in love" (2-Thess 2:13; Gal. 4:4, Gal. 4: 5; Eph. 1:4). The ultimate end of election is the praise of God's grace (Eph. 1:6, Eph. 1: 12). (See PREDESTINATION.)