There are at least seven different things we know that were before the foundation of the world. Our infinite God has made plans that included us before the creation took place. The Creator is the producer of all creation. Redemption and the church were no afterthought of His, but what He predetermined, He made “the things that are made” to suit that plan He had before He even put the world in place. All of those activities of divine Persons in the creative process were not indiscriminate acts, but purposeful actions carried out to bring to pass what God wanted. Fellowship and all its joys were behind the creation of mankind. God had the way things would happen designed, and He made the world to fit that chosen group of people whose purpose was to “glorify God and enjoy Him forever.” Our salvation depends on God’s grace, not on us deserving it for some reason.
God who has blessed us with all of these spiritual blessings did that to fit His eternal purpose. We do not, nor can we, understand all that God has planned. But we can rejoice in the fact that once for all; a long, long time ago; God made His own choice with blameless motives, a company of people to be His church, to bear His name, elected to receive blessings and engage in service for Him. He graciously, without any cost to us, gives salvation “without money and without price” to any and all who will come to Him by faith. “He that cometh to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of them that diligently seek Him.”
None of God’s actions are accidental or are being done out of desperation. He knew in the past before the world began how He would deal with sin. Every act of the divine purpose is according to His plan and is consistent with everything else God does. We cannot with our finite minds, grasp the infinite mind of God. But we can understand the logic of a plan, a design to follow and a way to fulfill that objective. We do that ourselves in order to accomplish our intentions. God who made us in His image, has instilled in us His chosen people, that same pattern. There is reason, plans and a procedure He follows to fulfill the original purpose He had. We do not deserve to be a part of this plan. It is only because of God’s sovereign will we were included in it. We did not influence God’s decisions – it according to “His mercy He saved us.” For His own reasons He included us and saved us, so there is no reason whatsoever for us to take any credit for our salvation.
In His gracious intention, the way this is accomplished is part of the masterful way Gos brings things to pass. He does not demand us to participate in His purposes of grace. He offers His salvation and His kind of life, eternal life, as a gift from Him to us. He desires us to desire Him. He wants us to want Him. He loves us and wants us to love Him. In that way we can “be to the praise of His glory.” That does not give us any reason to have pride in ourselves for being part of His plan, but rather we are humbled at such an offer to “come to Him.”
There was not, nor ever will be, anything in us that would recommend us as being fit for the kingdom of God. However, in the design of redemption, “The Father sent the Son to be the Savior of the world.” Now, because we are “in Christ,” He is able to accept us as “holy and without blame before Him in love.” We are looked upon by the holy and righteous God, as those who are blameless in His sight. Our sinless Substitute, the Lord Jesus Christ, has been made answerable for every righteous claim against us with His perfection as the Sacrifice. Our sinfulness has been dealt with by the holiness of our Lord Jesus Christ. Our Lord Jesus and the just God see us “in Christ Jesus” and counts us “holy and without blame.”
To those believers in Ephesus in the same way as to us today, there would have been a whole new outlook on life and the future as they understood they were included in God’s plan. To be holy means we are like God. “Be ye holy, for I am holy.” So we can approach God in faith and love because the Lord Jesus has acted in holiness on our behalf. We can be reckoned blameless before God because that condition has been provided for us by our Lord Jesus Christ. This standing is settled and secured before God and by God. Now it is our responsibility to practice such holiness and blamelessness before men. The motivation is there when we realize our standing in Christ is established forever. How could we not want to honor and please our Gracious God because He has blessed us with “all spiritual blessings;” chosen us in Him; “predestinated us unto the adoption of children;” “accepted in the Beloved.”