The Bible’s Choice
Some scientists believe that many of our choices are controlled by our unconscious brain reacting to environmental stimuli. Some also say that we have no free will in our decision-making. According to these beliefs, our actions are either a result of survival instincts or God taking control of our lives. However, the Bible shows us through Moses and Jesus that we do have control over our decisions.
From growing up in the world we become exposed to sin and can be tempted and influenced. However, we have the choice to choose God instead. In Deuteronomy 30:19, Moses said to the people of Israel, “I call heaven and earth to witness against you today, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and curse. Therefore choose life, that you and your offspring may live.” Moses was encouraging the Israelites to choose to obey God and His commandments over idol worship and other sins. With the new covenant, Christians today no longer have to obey the old laws that the Israelites did, but we still have to love God above all else like them.
The person who exemplified loving Jesus to the fullest was His son Jesus Christ. After fasting in the wilderness for 40 days, the devil tried to tempt Jesus to focus on Earthly things. Matthew 4:3-4 says, “And the tempter came and said to him, ‘If you are the Son of God, command these stones to become loaves of bread.’ But he answered, ‘It is written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.’’” Jesus was victorious over the temptation because He chose to focus on God and His scripture.
Satan even tried to tempt Jesus by twisting God’s word. Matthew 4:5-7 reads, “Then the devil took him to the holy city and set him on the pinnacle of the temple and said to him, ‘If you are the Son of God, throw yourself down, for it is written, ‘He will command his angels concerning you,’ and ‘On their hands they will bear you up, lest you strike your foot against a stone.’’ Jesus said to him, ‘Again it is written, ‘You shall not put the Lord your God to the test.’’” All Christians today should follow Jesus’ example and compare everything to the scriptures. As a result, they can be sure they are following God’s word and nothing else.
In John 6:44, Jesus also says, “I call heaven and earth to witness against you today, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and curse. Therefore choose life, that you and your offspring may live.” The Greek word for “draws” is helkysē. This verb can mean forcibly drags or motivationally impels. Jesus is talking to Jews in Capernaum about being the bread of life. He is encouraging them to hear His words and come closer to God. He is impelling them not forcibly dragging them to Him—both Malachi 3:6 and Hebrews 13:8 talk about how the Lord never changes. By Moses God had given the Jews the choice and through Jesus, He has given us the choice to choose a life with Him or the world.