Quotes on Election
â€œCan controversial teachings nurture our Christlikeness? Before you answer this question, ask another one: Are there any significant biblical teachings that have not been controversial? I cannot think of even one, let alone the number we all need for the daily nurture of faith. If this is true, then we have no choice but to seek our food in the markets of controversy. We need not stay there. We can go home and feast if the day has been well spent. But we must buy there. As much as we would like it, we do not have the luxury of living in a world where the most nourishing truths are unopposed. If we think we can suspend judgment on all that is controversial and feed our souls only on what is left, we are living in a dreamworld. There is nothing left. The reason any of us thinks that we can stand alone on truths that are non-controversial is because we do not know our history or the diversity of the professing church. Besides that, would we really want to give to the devil the right to determine our spiritual menu by refusing to eat any teaching over which he can cause controversy?
The teaching of Scripture on election has been controversial. But I believe with all my heart that it is precious beyond words and a great nourishment for the Christlikeness of faith. If I understand the teaching of the Bible, God has pleasure in election. To know that this is true, and to know why it is, is to see another facet of the glory of God. And that sight is the power to make us holy and happy people.â€ â€“ John Piper, Chosen: Godâ€™s Grace in Election
â€œHe chooses us, not because we believe, but that we may believe; lest we should say that we first chose him.â€ â€“ Augustine
John MacArthur, Answering the Key Questions About the Doctrine of Election (Interview): â€œIt probably ought to be the first thing you teach a young believer. Now that youâ€™ve come to Christ, this is what I want you to know, you were saved by the sovereign grace of God who stepped into your life in the midst of your death and blindness and gave you life and sight and picked you up and brought you into His Kingdom. Sheer grace has done this for you. That, I think, is the first thing you should say to a new convert. This is, if in fact, you are faithful to the confession you have made, if in fact your love for Christ and desire to honor, to worship and to obey Him continues to grow, this will be an ongoing evidence that God has wrought a miracle in your life. And because of that, you need to know, this is really important, that you should live a life of gratitude for a work has been done in you which you did not deserve and did not earn.â€
â€œAt the very announcement of the text some will be ready to say, â€œWhy preach upon so profound a doctrine as election?â€ I answer, because it is in Godâ€™s word, and whatever is in the Word of God is to be preached. â€œBut some truths ought to be kept back from the people,â€ you will say, â€œlest they should make an ill use thereof.â€ That is Popish doctrine, it was upon that very theory that the priests kept back the Bible from the people, they did not give it to them lest they should misuse it. â€œBut are not some doctrines dangerous?â€ Not if they are true and rightly handled. Truth is never dangerous, it is error and reticence that are fraught with peril. â€œBut do not men abuse the doctrine of grace?â€ I grant you that they do; but if we destroyed everything that men misuse, we should have nothing left. Are there to be no ropes because some fools will hang themselves? And, must cutlery be discarded and denounced, because there are some who will use dangerous weapons for the destruction of their adversaries? Decidedly not. Besides all this, remember that men do read the Scriptures and think about these doctrines, and therefore often make mistakes about them; who then shall set them right if we, who preach the Word, hold our tongues about the matter?â€ â€“ C. H. Spurgeon, from sermon entitled, Election: Its Defenses and Evidences
â€œI know, dear friends, there are some who are so afraid of this doctrine, that the mention of it produces alarm. If they were to meet a lion in their way, they would not be more terrified than they are when they see this doctrine in Scripture or hear it from the pulpit (the doctrine of Election).â€ â€“ C. H. Spurgeon, from sermon entitled, Election: Its Defenses and Evidences
â€œGod didnâ€™t draw straws; He didnâ€™t look down the corridor of time to see who would choose Him before He decided. Rather, by His sovereign will He chose who would be in the Body of Christ. The construction of the Greek verb for â€œchoseâ€ indicates God chose us for Himself. That means God acted totally independent of any outside influence. He made His choice totally apart from human will and purely on the basis of His sovereignty.â€ â€“ John MacArthur Jr.
â€œIt is no novelty, then, that I am-preaching; no new doctrine. I love to proclaim these strong old doctrines, which are called by nickname Calvinism, but which are surely and verily the revealed truth of God as it is in Christ Jesus. By this truth I make a pilgrimage into the past, and as I go, I see father after father, confessor after confessor, martyr after martyr, standing up to shake hands with me. Were I a Pelagian, or a believer in the doctrine of free-will, I should have to walk for centuries all alone. Here and there a heretic of no very honorable character might rise up and call me brother. But taking these things to be the standard of my faith, I see the land of the ancients peopled with my brethren â€“ I behold multitudes who confess the same as I do, and acknowledge that this is the religion of Godâ€™s own church.â€ â€“ C. H. Spurgeon, from sermon entitled, Election
â€œThe Sovereignty of God is the stumbling block on which thousands fall and perish; and if we go contending with God about His sovereignty it will be our eternal ruin. It is absolutely necessary that we should submit to God as an absolute sovereign, and the sovereign of our souls; as one who may have mercy on whom He will have mercy and harden whom He will.â€ â€“ Jonathan Edwards
â€œAll that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out.â€ John 6:37
â€œThank God for such an assurance as that! God will not be defeated. His purpose will never fail of accomplishment. All that the Father giveth to Jesus shall come to Him. You do not like that, perhaps. You say you do not believe in election and predestination. Then you will have to tear a number of pages out of your Bible, for there are many of them which magnify Godâ€™s sovereign electing grace.â€ â€“ H. A. Ironside, The Gospel of John
â€œYou know, brethren, that there is no soul living who holds more firmly to the doctrines of grace than I do, and if any man asks me whether I am ashamed to be called a Calvinist, I answer, I wish to be called nothing but a Christian; but if you ask me, do I hold the doctrinal views which were held by John Calvin, I reply, I do in the main hold them, and rejoice to avow it. But, my dear friends, far be it from me even to imagine that Zion contains none within her walls but Calvinistic Christians, or that there are none saved who do not hold our views. Most atrocious things have been spoken about the character and spiritual condition of John Wesley, the modern prince of Arminians. I can only say concerning him, that while I detest many of the doctrines which he preached, yet for the man himself, I have a reverence second to no Wesleyan; and if there were wanted two apostles to be added to the number of the twelve, I do not believe that there could be found two men more fit to be so added than George Whitefield and John Wesley. The character of John Wesley stands beyond all imputation for self-sacrifice, zeal, holiness, and communion with God; he lived far above the ordinary level of common Christians, and was one of whom the world was not worthy. I believe there are multitudes of men who cannot see these truths, or, at least, cannot see them in the way in which we put them, who nevertheless have received Christ into their hearts, and are as dear to the heart of the God of grace as the soundest Calvinist out of heaven.â€ â€“ C. H. Spurgeon, The Man With the Measuring Line