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"...if anyone makes the assistance of grace depend on the humility or obedience of man and does not agree that it is a gift of grace itself that we are obedient and humble, he contradicts the Apostle who says, "What have you that you did not receive?" (1 Cor. 4:7), and, "But by the grace of God I am what I am" (1 Cor. 15:10). (Council of Orange: Canon 6)

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  • « The Christian Mission: An Overview | Main | Praying for a People Group »

    Who Made You to Differ? by C.H. Spurgeon

    From Spurgeon's sermon, "The Fruitless Vine"

    It is grace, free, sovereign grace, which has made you to differ!

    Should any here, supposing themselves to be the children of God, imagine that there is some reason "in them" why they should have been chosen, let them know, that as yet they are in the dark, concerning the first principles of grace, and have not yet learned the gospel.

    If ever they had known the gospel, they would, on the other hand, confess that they were less than the least- the offscouring of all things- unworthy, ill-deserving, undeserving, and hell-deserving, and ascribe it all to distinguishing grace, which has made them to differ; and to discriminating love, which has chosen them out from the rest of the world.

    Great Christian, you would have been a great sinner if God had not made you to differ! O! you who are valiant for truth, you would have been as valiant for the devil if grace had not laid hold of you!

    A seat in heaven shall one day be yours; but a chain in hell would have been yours if grace had not changed you!

    You can now sing his love; but a licentious song might have been on your lips, if grace had not washed you in the blood of Jesus!

    You are now sanctified, you are quickened, you are justified; but what would you have been today if it had not been for the interposition of the divine hand?

    There is not a crime you might not have committed;there is not a folly into which you might not have run. Even murder itself you might have committed if grace had not kept you.

    You shall be like the angels; but you would have been like the devil if you had not been changed by grace!

    Therefore, never be proud- all the garments you have are from above; rags were your only heritage.

    Never be proud, though you now have a wide domain of grace;you had once not a single thing to call yours own, except your sin and misery.

    You are now wrapped up in the golden righteousness of the Savior, and accepted in the garments of the beloved!
    But you would have been buried under the black mountain of sin, and clothed with the filthy rags of nrighteousness,
    if he had not changed you!

    And are you proud?

    Do you exalt yourself?

    O! strange mystery, that you, who have borrowed everything, should exalt yourself; that you, who have nothing of your own, but have still to draw upon grace, should be proud- a poor dependent pensioner upon the bounty of your Savior, and yet proud; one who has a life which can only live by fresh streams of life from Jesus, and yet proud!

    Go, hang your pride upon the gallows, as high as Haman! Hang it there to rot, and you stand beneath, and execrate it to all eternity; for sure of all things most to be cursed and despised is the pride of a Christian.

    He, of all men, has ten thousand times more reason than any other to be humble, and walk lowly with his God, and kindly and humbly toward his fellow-creatures.

    The following is from Spurgeon's sermon, The Widow of Sarepta. #817. 1 Kings 17:8, 9.

    None of us have any right to God's mercy.

    Election is an indisputable truth of Christianity, and one full of the richest comfort to the child of God- one which is intended to kindle in him perpetual flames of adoring gratitude. It is a truth which lays him low, and makes him feel
    that there is nothing in him, and then raises him up and bids him, like a seraph, adore before the throne!

    Distinguishing grace is a fact; prize this truth and hold it firmly. Thank God that you are made a partaker of his eternal love. The sovereign electing grace of God chooses us to repentance, to faith, and afterwards to holiness of living, to Christian service, to zeal, and to devotion.

    Posted by John on July 25, 2006 08:58 PM

    Comments

    What a wonderfully encouraging article. Thanks for posting!

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