WCF 3:2-5 Clarifying God’s Decree
2. Although God knows whatever may or can come to pass under all conceivable conditions, yet he has not decreed anything because he foresaw it as future or as that which would come to pass under such conditions.
God initiates; He does not respond. He is the first cause, the very ground of being. He decides, he decrees, and it happens. In His omniscience, he knows everything that could happen or might happen upon certain conditions, but His decree is not based on “what if’s”, but rather on his sovereign good pleasure.
3. By God's decree, for the manifestation of his glory, some men and angels are predestined to everlasting life, and others are foreordained to everlasting death.
4. These angels and men, thus predestined and foreordained, are individually and unchangeably designated, and their number is so certain and definite that it cannot be either increased or decreased.
God has chosen specific angels to persevere in purity and particular fallen men to be redeemed. He has passed by, and allowed others to choose sin and willingly continue in it. The number of the elect and the number of the reprobate is known to God and will not change. Isn’t this unfair and unjust? “If God chooses sovereignly to bestow His grace on some sinners and withhold his grace from other sinners, is there any violation of justice in this? If God allows some sinners to perish, is he treating them unjustly? Of course not. One group receives grace, the other receives justice. No one gets injustice.” RC Sproul
5. Those people who are predestined to life, God—before the foundation of the world was laid, according to his eternal and unchangeable purpose and the secret counsel and good pleasure of his will—has chosen in Christ to everlasting glory. He chose them out of his free grace and love alone, not because he foresaw faith, or good works, or perseverance in either of these, or anything else in the creature, as conditions or causes moving him to do this; and all to the praise of his glorious grace.
When did God choose His people? Before time - in eternity past. What moved him to choose his people? The reasons are found in God, not in us. He chose according to His purpose, counsel and will. How did his choose His people? In Christ. We ought not think of our election outside of Jesus Christ. For what did he choose His people? To enter into everlasting glory! What mechanism did God use to choose His people. His free grace and self-generated love. The door of salvation opens from God’s side, not ours. We broke the handle. But God does open the door! God doesn't have pre-requisites, or conditions that must fulfill before He elects us. He chooses us because of His character and for his own glory.