“Hath not the potter power over the clay, of the same lump to make one vessel unto honour, and another unto dishonour? What if God, willing to shew his wrath, and to make his power known, endured with much long-suffering the vessels of wrath fitted to destruction: And that he might make known the riches of his glory on the vessels of mercy, which he had afore prepared unto glory.” Romans 9:21-23
Election is not on the basis of works; yet there is an inner difference in the persons of men, whereby one is fitted for mercy, another for wrath, as one vessel is made unto dishonor, and another unto honor. For the plate is made unto honor, but the ash tray to dishonor; and the cup is made unto honor, but the sink unto dishonor. So also, with the souls of men, some are made unto honor, and others unto dishonor.
For according to the divine nature, all men are made in righteousness, and unto righteousness; but according to the divine persons, who are the fountain of grace, some men are shown mercy, and others are passed over, that mercy might be shown to the elect, that he has saved them from such destruction through the sacrifice of his Son. And that not of works, but of himself, who has unconditionally condemned the Lord Jesus Christ, imputing our sins to him, that he might be glorified in our salvation. For it is his mercy to give, or withhold, as he pleases.
“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.” Romans 9:15