Seventeen years and nine-odd months ago, something happened in my mom’s womb. A piece of my mom collided with a piece of my dad, and something new came into being. Someone new. In that moment, I became more than two infinitesimal pieces of tissue.
In that moment, I was alive, I was a person. I carried the image of God Himself.
But in that moment, I wasn’t innocent – I was depraved, wicked. I was human.
“Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity, And in sin my mother conceived me.” (Psalm 51:5)
Every one of us is descended from Adam, that very first man. Adam, who disobeyed God’s one command; who chose to trust himself over God; who chose to believe that there was more joy to be found in his own will than in the Lord. And so we’re all born as bearers of the Imago Dei, and yet we’re born full of sin, and into a sinful world.
Except so many aren’t born. They’re killed before they get that chance. In the hundred years since Planned Parenthood was founded, the lives of more than fifty million have been sacrificed on the altar of “choice.”
Mothers and fathers and doctors and politicians choose for these children before they’re even born. The all-important choice – their life or their death – is a choice they don’t get to make.
“And you were dead in your trespasses and sins…” (Ephesians 2:1)
Actually, it’s a choice they can’t make. None of us can, because when we’re born into this world, we’re already dead. It doesn’t matter if we’re seventeen or eighty or still in our mother’s womb, we can’t choose to be alive.
A dead person can’t choose life. The only thing they can choose is to stay dead. We are children of wrath, subject to the just and holy anger of our Creator, and there is absolutely nothing we can do about it.
“But God, being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in our transgressions, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved)…” (Ephesians 2:4-5)
He has made us alive. And it was at a cost to Him greater than we can even imagine.
It wasn’t just an inconvenience, it wasn’t just difficult. The cost was sending His Son, the second person of the triune Godhead, to earth as a man – God, in human flesh. The cost was living as a man, the humble Son of a carpenter, for thirty-three years; and never once sinning. All the good that we could never do, all the commands that we could never in an eternity fulfill, He did.
The cost was death. He died, on a cross, an instrument of the most heinous torture. And He bore all the Father’s wrath – all that just, righteous, holy anger that would have destroyed us in an instant. He bore it on His shoulders. He died the death that we should have died for all eternity.
And then He triumphed over death. He could not stay in the grave. He was raised from the dead by the power of God, and He conquered death forever.
“Jesus said to her, ‘I am the resurrection and the life; he who believes in Me will live even if he dies, and everyone who lives and believes in Me will never die. Do you believe this?'” (John 11:25-26)
And here is the beautiful thing: He chose this life for us before we were even born.
“just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we would be holy and blameless before Him. In love He predestined us to adoption as sons through Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the kind intention of His will, to the praise of the glory of His grace, which He freely bestowed on us in the Beloved.” (Ephesians 1:4-6)
We couldn’t choose it for ourselves. Our parents couldn’t choose it for us, neither could any doctor, any politician, even any pastor. We were totally helpless. And yet, before we had done anything good or bad; before that tiny piece of tissue became a living human being, so beautiful and yet so dreadfully wicked; before the world itself was made, He chose to give us life. Eternal life.
If you are His child – if you have repented of your sin, if you have trusted Him for salvation and eternal life – this is true for you. He has chosen you, set His love on you from all eternity past. More than any loving parent, our heavenly Father has chosen life for us.
“For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them.” (Ephesians 2:8-10)
Is this faith yours? Are you His child? If you are, rest in the assurance that He has chosen you – and nothing in this earth or outside of it can change that (Romans 8:35-39).
//All Scripture from the NASB//