Having looked at the Epistles of John, we now turn our attention to the First Epistle of Peter. He identifies himself as an apostle of Jesus Christ. We know him from the gospels as a fisherman, a man whose faith was tested, who denied the Christ and was restored to the Kingdom of God. He writes his letter to the temporary residents of the scattering of the Jews to places like Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia and Bithynia. He calls them elect in regards to three significant positions.
First they are elect according to the foreknowledge of God. They were already in God’s thoughts. He was the source, the One with the plan, who sees it through to its completion. Paul’s writing confirm this truth. In Ephesians 1:4 he wrote “He chose us before the foundations of the world.” Then in Romans he further writes, “For whom He foreknew.” God’s plan of salvation had long been in the works.
Secondly, they are elect according to the sanctification of the Spirit. The helper came once Jesus departed. It is He who works in believers to set them apart for God’s work. the gospel came in the power of the Spirit, with much assurance and with joy.
Thirdly, they are elect for a purpose, “for obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus.” The prophet Isaiah spoke of Jesus, “So shall He sprinkle many nations, Kings shall shut their mouths at Him; For what had not been told them, they shall see, And what they had not heard they shall consider.” Paul wrote in Romans 1:5, “through Him we received grace and apostleship for obedience to the faith among all the nations for His name.” God’s plan gave great purpose. The apostle Peter calls them elect in regards to these three significant positions. This word still speaks.