“For God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our LORD Jesus Christ…” (1 Thessalonians 5:9)
In declaring the work of God in salvation there is both a negative and a positive in this message. Negatively, “…NOT appointed to wrath.” Positively, appointed “…to obtain salvation by our LORD Jesus Christ.” Clearly then, there is the underlying premise that some are appointed to wrath but others are not appointed to wrath. Then also is the Truth that any that are saved have obtained salvation, not by the act of their will, nor by any works of righteousness that they have done but entirely in, by and through the LORD Jesus Christ alone. This Truth is confirmed throughout Scripture as being what distinguishes the God of the Bible from all other ‘gods’ that men as sinners worship, “For he saith to Moses, I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion. So then it is not of him that willeth, nor of him that runneth, but of God that sheweth mercy.” (Romans 9:15-16)
We are all by nature children of wrath. The very nature of those that God has appointed to wrath is our nature, Ephesians 2:3.It is not saying that those that God has appointed to salvation by the LORD Jesus were ever His wrath and yet chosen vessels of Mercy. If God were to deal with us according to our just deserts, we should all suffer His eternal wrath under the judgment of His condemnation, as others do and shall.
Should this not cause us to pause and rejoice in wonderment crying out, ‘Why me?’ Natural minded sinners will always find fault with God and His sovereign will in ordaining some to eternal life and others to eternal condemnation. Those under condemnation will cry out, ‘Why me?’ in unbelief that God should utterly cast them out of His presence forever, without seeing His justice as the foundation of their condemnation. At the same time, those saved by the blood and righteousness of the LORD Jesus cannot cease to exclaim, ‘Why me?’ As the hymn writer wrote the words reflecting every saved sinner’s heart: