« ForrigeFortsett »
time, also, there is a remnant according to the election of grace.”
To the faithful in Christ Jesus, it is written, “ Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ, 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; having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his wiil, to the praise of the glory of his grace, in which he hath made us accepted in the beloved ; in whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace. In whom also, we have obtained an inheritance, being predestinated according to the purpose of him, who worketh all things after the counsel of his own will.” AMEN.
JOHN VI. 37.
Án that the Father giveth me, shall come to me; and him that
cometh to me, I will in no wise cast out.
In the preceding discourse upon these words, it has been shewn that God has decreed that a certain part of mankind shall be saved. It is now proposed,
II. To enquire, whether God has decreed that the other part of mankind shall be destroyed.
Here it may be well,
1. To consider what God has said on this subject in the holy scriptures, God said to Pharaoh,—" For I will at this time send all my plagues upon thine heart, and upon thy servants, and upon thy people : that thou mayest know that there is none like me in all the earth. For now I will stretch out my hand that I may smite thee, and thy people with pestilence : and thou shalt be cut off from the earth. And in very deed, for this cause have I rai. sed thee up, for to shew in thee my power ;
and that my name may be declared throughout all the earth.” When Eli reproved his sons for their shameful wickedness it is said, “ Notwithstanding they hearkened not to the voice of their father, because the Lord would slay them.” God says by the Psalmist,“ When the wicked spring as grass, and when all the workers of iniquity do flourish; it is that they shall be destroyed for ever.” Again it is writ. ten, “ The Lord hath made all things for himself: yea even the wicked for the day of evil.” By Isaiah God says, “ But the word of the Lord was unto them precept upon precept, precept upon precept ; line upon line, line upon . line; here a little and there a little, that they might go and fall backward, and be broken, and snared, and taken.” Of the Lord Jesus Christ it is written, “ In that hour Jesus rejoiced in spirit and said, I thank thee, O Father, Lord
O of heaven and earth, that thou hast hid these things from the wise and prudent, and hast revealed them unto babes ; even so, Father, for so it seemeth good in thy sight.” Again Jesus said, “ For judgment I am come into this world; that they who see not might see ; and that they who see might be made blind.”. Again it is written, " Therefore they could not believe, because that Esaias had said again, He hath blinded their eyes, and hardened their heart, that they should not see with their eyes, nor understand with their heart, and be converted, and I should heal them.” To the saints at Rome the apostle writes, “ For the scripture
saith unto Pharaoh, Even for this same pur. pose have I raised thee up, that I might shew my power in thee, and that my name might be declared throughout all the earth. Therefore hath he mercy on whom he will have mercy, and whom he will he hardeneth. Hath not the potter power over the clay, of the same lump to make one vessel unto honor, and another unto dishonor ? What, if God to shew his wrath, and make his power known, endured with much long-suffering, the vessels of wrath fitted to destruction ?" To Timothy it is written, “ In a great house there are not only vessels of gold and silver ; but also of wood and of earth; and some to honor and some to dishonor." Jude says to the saints, “For there are certain men crept in unawares, who were before of old ordained unto this condemnation.” Peter says to his Christian brethren, “ Unto you therefore who believe, he is precious : but unto them who be disobedient, the stone which the builders disallowed, the same is made the head of the corner, and a stone of stumbling, and a rock of offence, even to them who stumble at the word, being disobedient, whereunto also they were appointed.” Such is the testimony of the living and true God, respecting his purpose
to destroy all those persons who were not given to the Lord Jesus Christ.
2. God always knew what persons would be destroyed.
God is omniscient, or he is an imperfect being. If God be omniscient, from eternity he
foreknew whatsoever comes to pass. A deni. al of the divine prescience of all things, denies the essential perfections of the living and truc God, and throws us into the abyss of Atheism. But if God foreknows all things, he knows from eternity what number, and what persons would be destroyed. God foretold the destruction of Pharaoh, and of Judas, and other reprobates. Will any pretend that God did not foreknow how many of those millions of the human race, who have already died, would be lost ? Will any pretend that God does not know how many of the millions, who are now living, will be lost ? Does not God also know what number, and what persons of those, who shall yet be born, will live and die in their sins, and perish without remedy? Yet what is uncertain cannot be known. Nor can. any thing, which is not decreed, be certain. The divine decree res. pecting the destruction of sinners, is as evident as the divine foreknowledge of their destruction. And the divine foreknowledge of their destruction is as evident as the omniscience of Jehovah. And the divine omniscience is as evident as the divine existence. Shall we then become Atheists? Or shall we believe that God declares “ the end from the beginning, and from ancient times, the things that are not yet done, saying, My counsel shall stand, and I will do all my pleasure ?” We have as good rcasons for denying the perfections, and the very existence of Jehovah, as for denying that he has decreed the destruction of a part of the human