According as he has chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love:
I. Let us observe THE FIRST OUTFLOW OF THESE HEAVENLY BLESSINGS. The fountain of eternal love burst forth in our election — "According as He hath chosen us in Him before the foundation of the world." Consider these words one by one.
1. The first is, "He hath chosen:" God has a will and a choice in the matter of salvation. Is man's will to be deified? Is the whole result of the scheme of salvation to depend upon the creature's choice? God forbid.
2. Carefully note that election shapes everything: the Father has blessed us with all spiritual blessings, "According as He hath chosen us in Christ." All the grace of earth and the glory of heaven come to us in accordance with the eternal choice. There is not a single boon that comes from the blessed hand of the Divine Redeemer but is stamped with the mark of God's electing love. We were chosen to each mercy, and each mercy was appointed for us.
3. The next word is, "He hath chosen us." Herein is grace indeed. What could there be in us that the Lord should choose us? Some of us feel ourselves the most unworthy of the unworthy, and we can see no trace of a reason for our being chosen. So far from being choice men in our own esteem, we feel ourselves by nature to be the very reverse. But if God has chosen us, then let our hearts love Him, our lips extol Him, our hands serve Him, our whole lives adore Him.
4. Then we are told, he has chosen us in Christ Jesus. He first chose Christ as the head, and then looked through Christ upon us, and chose us to be members of Christ's mystical body.
5. The time when this choice was made — "Before the foundation of the world," the earliest conceivable period. The choice is no sudden act.
II. THE DESIGNED RESULT OF ALL THIS BLESSING.
1. It is God's eternal design that His people should be holy. When you grow in grace, and faith, and hope, and joy, all that growth is towards holiness. There is something practical in every boon that comes from the Father's hand, and you should pray to Him that you may by each one conquer sin, advance in virtue and perfect holiness in His fear. The ultimate end of election is the praise of the glory of Divine grace, but the immediate and intermediate end is the personal sanctification of the chosen.
2. The Father chose us to Himself that we might be without blame before Him in love. He would have us blameless, so that no man can justly find fault with us; and harmless, so that our lives may injure none, but bless all.
3. But notice where and what kind of holiness this is: holy and blameless before Him. It would be something to be perfect before the eyes of men who are so ready to criticize us; but to be blameless before Him who reads our thoughts and sees our every failure in a moment — this is an attainment of a far higher order. To conclude, we are to be holy and blameless before Him in love. Love is the anointing oil which is to be poured on all the Lord's priests; when he has robed them in their spotless garments, they shall partake of the unction of love.
(C. H. Spurgeon.)
Parallel VersesKJV: According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love: