GOD’S LOVE RESTRICTED TO HIS ELECT

GOD’S LOVE RESTRICTED TO HIS ELECT

A.W. Pink

One of the most popular beliefs of the day is that God loves everybody, and the very fact that it is so popular with all classes ought to be enough to arouse the suspicions of those who are subject to the Word of Truth. God’s Love toward all His creatures is the fundamental and favorite tenet of Universalists, Unitarians, Theosophists, Christian Scientists, Spiritualists, Russellites, etc. No matter how a man may live—in open defiance of Heaven, with no concern whatever for his soul’s eternal interests, still less for God’s glory, dying, perhaps with an oath on his lips,—notwithstanding, God loves him, we are told. So widely has this dogma been proclaimed, and so comforting is it to the heart which is at enmity with God, we have little hope of convincing many of their error. That God loves everybody, is, we may say, quite a modern belief. The writings of the church-fathers, the Reformers or the Puritans will (we believe) be searched in vain for any such concept. Perhaps the late D. L. Moody—captivated by Drummond’s “The Greatest Thing in the World”—did more than anyone else last century to popularize this concept.

It has been customary to say God loves the sinner, though He hates his sin. But that is a meaningless distinction. What is there in a sinner but sin? Is it not true that his “whole head is sick”, and his “whole heart faint”, and that “from the sole of the foot even unto the head there is no soundness” in him? (Isaiah 1:5,6). Is it true that God loves the one who is despising and rejecting His blessed Son? God is Light as well as Love, and therefore His love must be a holy love. To tell the Christ rejector that God loves him is to cauterize his conscience, as well as to afford him a sense of security in his sins. The fact is, that the love of God, is a truth for the saints only, and to present it to the enemies of God is to take the children’s bread and cast it to the dogs. With the exception of John 3:16, not once in the four Gospels do we read of the Lord Jesus—the perfect Teacher— telling sinners that God loved them! In the book of Acts, which records the evangelistic labors and messages of the apostles, God’s love is never referred to at all! But, when we come to the Epistles, which are addressed to the saints, we have a full presentation of this precious truth—God’s love for His own.

Let us seek to rightly divide the Word of God and then we shall not be found taking truths which are addressed to believers and misapplying them to unbelievers. That which sinners need to have brought before them is, the ineffable holiness, the exacting righteousness, the inflexible justice and the terrible wrath of God. Risking the danger of being mis-understood, let us say—and we wish we could say it to every evangelist and preacher in the country—there is far too much presenting of Christ to sinners today (by those sound in the faith), and far too little showing sinners their need of Christ, i.e., their absolutely ruined and lost condition, their imminent and awful danger of suffering the wrath to come, the fearful guilt resting upon them in the sight of God—to present Christ to those who have never been shown their need of Him, seems to us to be guilty of casting pearls before swine.

If it be true that God loves every member of the human family then why did our Lord tell His disciples, “He that hath My commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth Me: and he that loveth Me shall be loved of My Father….. If a man love Me, he will keep My words: and My Father will love him” (John 14:21,23)? Why say “he that loveth Me shall be loved of My Father” if the Father loves everybody? The same limitation is found in Proverbs 8:17: “I love them that love Me.” Again; we read, “Thou hatest all workers of iniquity”—not merely the works of iniquity. Here, then, is a flat repudiation of present teaching that, God hates sin but loves the sinner; Scripture says, “Thou hatest all workers of iniquity” (Psalm 5:5)! “God is angry with the wicked every day.” “He that believeth not the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God”—not “shall abide,” but even now—”abideth on him” (Psalm 5:5; 7:11, John 3:36). Can God “love” the one on whom His “wrath” abides?

Again; is it not evident that the words “The love of God which is in Christ Jesus” (Romans 8:39) mark a limitation, both in the sphere and objects of His love? Again; is it not plain from the words “Jacob have I loved, but Esau have I hated” (Romans 9:13) that God does not love everybody? Again; it is written, “For whom the Lord loveth He chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom He receiveth” (Hebrews 12:6). Does not this verse teach that God’s love is restricted to the members of His own family? If He loves all men without exception, then the distinction and limitation here mentioned is quite meaningless. Finally, we would ask, Is it conceivable that God will love the damned in the Lake of Fire? Yet, if He loves them now He will do so then, seeing that His love knows no change—He is “without variableness or shadow of turning”!

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WHAT IS ‘SOVEREIGN GRACE’?

WHAT IS ‘SOVEREIGN GRACE’?

A.W. Pink

This is the free, pure Sovereign Grace of God: as it is written “Being justified FREELY by His grace” (Rom. 3:24). What is grace? It is God’s unmerited and uninfluenced favour, shown unto the undeserving and hell-deserving: neither human worthiness, works or willingness, attracting it, nor the lack of them repelling or obstructing it. 

What could there be in me to win the favourable regard of Him who is of too pure eyes to behold evil, and move Him to justify me? NOTHING whatever; nay, there was everything in me calculated to make Him abhor and destroy me—my very self-righteous efforts to earn a place in Heaven deserving only a lower place in Hell.

If, then, I am ever to be “justified” by God it must be by PURE GRACE, AND THAT ALONE! Grace is the very essence of the Gospel—the only hope for fallen men, the sole comfort of saints passing through much tribulation on their way to the kingdom of God. The Gospel is the announcement that God is prepared to deal with guilty rebels on the ground of free favour, of pure benignity; that God will blot out sin, cover the believing sinner with a robe of spotless righteousness, and receive him as an accepted son: not on account of anything he has done or ever will do, but of sovereign mercy, acting independently of the sinner’s own character and deservings of eternal punishment.

Justification is perfectly gratuitous so far as we are concerned, nothing being required of us in order to it, either in the way of price and satisfaction or preparation and meetness. We have not the slightest degree of merit to offer as the ground of our acceptance, and therefore if God ever does accept us it must be out of unmingled grace. It is as “the God of all grace” (1 Peter 5:10) that Jehovah justifies the ungodly. It is as “the God of all grace” He seeks, finds, and saves His people: asking them for nothing, giving them everything. Strikingly is this brought out in that word “being justified FREELY by His grace” (Rom. 3:24), the design of that adverb being to exclude all consideration of anything in us or from us which should be the cause or condition of our justification.

That same Greek adverb is translated “WITHOUT A CAUSE” in John 15:25—“they hated Me without a cause.” The world’s hatred of Christ was “without a cause” so far as He was concerned: there was nothing whatever in Him which, to the slightest degree, deserved their enmity against Him: there was nothing in Him unjust, perverse, or evil; instead, there was everything in Him which was pure, holy, lovely. In like manner, there is nothing whatever in us to call forth the approbation of God: by nature there is “no good thing” in us; but instead, everything that is evil, vile, loathsome.

“Being justified without a cause by His GRACE.” How this tells out the very heart of God! While there was no motive to move Him, outside of Himself, there was one inside Himself; while there was nothing in us to impel God to justify us, His own grace moved Him, so that He devised a way whereby His wondrous love could have vent and flow forth to the chief of sinners, the vilest of rebels. As it is written, “I, even I, am He that blotteth out thy transgressions for Mine own sake, and will not remember thy sins” (Isa. 43:25).

Wondrous, matchless grace! We cannot for a moment look outside the grace of God for any motive or reason why He should ever have noticed us, still less had respect unto such ungodly wretches. The first moving cause, then, that inclined God to show mercy to His people in their undone and lost condition, was His own wondrous grace—unsought, uninfluenced, unmerited by us. He might justly have left us all obnoxious to the curse of His Law, without providing any Surety for us, as He did the fallen angels; but such was His grace toward us that “He spared not His own Son.”

“Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost; Which He shed on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Saviour; That being justified by His grace, we should be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life” (Titus 3:5–7). It was His own sovereign favour and good will which actuated God to form this wondrous scheme and method of justification.

Against what has been said above, it has been objected by Socinians and their echoists that this cannot be: if the believing sinner is justified upon the grounds of a full satisfaction having been made to God for him by a surety, then his discharge from condemnation and his reception into God’s judicial favour must be an act of pure justice, and therefore could not be by grace. Or, if it be purely an act of Divine grace, then no surety can have obeyed the law in the believer’s stead. But this is to confound two distinct things: the relation of God to Christ the Surety, and the relation of God to me the sinner.

It was grace which transferred my sins to Christ; it was justice which smote Christ on account of those sins. It was grace which appointed me unto everlasting bliss; it is justice to Christ which requires I shall enjoy that which He purchased for me. Toward the sinner justification is an act of free unmerited favour; but toward Christ, as a sinner’s Surety, it is an act of justice that eternal life should be bestowed upon those for whom His meritorious satisfaction was made.

First, it was pure grace that God was willing to accept satisfaction from the hands of a surety. He might have exacted the debt from us in our own persons, and then our condition had been equally miserable as that of the fallen angels, for whom no mediator was provided. Second, it was wondrous grace that God Himself provided a Surety for us, which we could not have done. The only creatures who are capable of performing perfect obedience are the holy angels, yet none of them could have assumed and met our obligations, for they are not akin to us, possessing not human nature, and therefore incapable of dying.

Even had an angel became incarnate, his obedience to the law could not have availed for the whole of God’s elect, for it would not have possessed infinite value. None but a Divine person taking human nature into union with Himself could present unto God a satisfaction adequate for the redemption of His people. And it was impossible for men to have found out that Mediator and Surety: it must have its first rise in God, and not from us: it was He that “found” a ransom (Job 33:24) and laid help upon One that is “mighty” (Psa. 89:19).

In the last place, it was amazing grace that the Son was willing to perform such a work for us, without whose consent the justice of God could not have exacted the debt from Him. And His grace is the most eminent in that He knew beforehand all the unspeakable humiliation and unparalleled suffering which He would encounter in the discharge of this work, yet that did not deter Him; nor was He unapprised (or without knowledge) of the character of those for whom He did it—the guilty, the ungodly, the hell-deserving; yet He shrank not back.

“O to grace how great a debtor,
Daily I’m constrained to be!
Let Thy grace, Lord, like a fetter,
Bind my wandering heart to Thee.”

Hallelujah!

AN HONEST EVALUATION OF IAN MURRAY’S BIOGRAPHY OF A.W. PINK

AN HONEST EVALUATION OF IAN MURRAY’S BIOGRAPHY OF A.W. PINK

Dear fellow reformed Christians. I post this 6 years later especially in regards to Ian Murray’s revised biography of A W Pink. I am a fan of Mr. Pink and was appalled by his book’s account of Pink. Below is my review on Google of the book. I very much like this blog!
Terry

Does Murray present Pink fairly??  Two stars – probably should have been 0!
ByTerry on October 30, 2017
Format: Hardcover|Verified Purchase

Several months ago I purchased this book being a long time lover of A.W. Pink.

I want to make it clear that this is not a vote against A.W. Pink but for him! This is a vote against Ian H. Murray as I think he has gone out of his way to present Pink in an unfavorable view both as a Christian and as a man. Primarily for his withdrawal from the physical church and his subsequent reclusiveness as he retired himself from preaching to reading, studying and writing about doctrinal truths. And then for his strict adherence to a pure form of Calvinism as that which came forth out of the Reformation.

I was saved of an Arminian mentality and much struggled to make sense of scripture. Then I became aware of reformed theology and the sovereignty of God and the scriptures began to come together and make sense. But my fleshly mind much rebelled against the sovereignty of God especially in election. Eventually by the grace of God I came to see those doctrines clearly.

I give Pink much credit in the finishing work of the conversion of my beliefs from Arminianism to Calvinsim by the power of his writings. Of course the main credit goes to Lord by His Spirit in me and the subsequent opening of my eyes to the truth with lies in scripture. But Pink did much to prepare the soil for this.
Pink has become quite popular through the writings he left behind. God is glorified!

Now as I read the Bible (KJV) I find harmony in the scriptures and fully accept the doctrines which came out of the reformation. So I owe much to Pink for this although now I find little need for his writings as the scriptures themselves are sufficient within themselves. When I do feel the need to refresh my remembrance of doctrine it is Pink who I primarily turn to along with Jonathan Edwards, Calvin, & Gill.
On his death bed I believe among his last words was the statement “The scriptures explain themselves!”

Murray’s quarrel with Pink seems in part to be that when the people would no longer receive his puritanical preaching nor his strict interpretation of scripture from a sovereign God’s viewpoint that he retired from preaching withdrew from the church (which rejected him) and focused on writing Bible studies to those who appreciated his works. Today in the modern church many if not most pastors if they found themselves in Pink’s position would tone down their message in the name of pragmatism until they found a doctrine which would tickle the ears of their congregation. But Pink refused to compromise what he saw as the true doctrines of God.

I think a large part of the problem that Murray has with Pink lies in his dislike for Pink’s brand of Calvinism. I picture Murray more of a 4 point Calvinist whereas Pink is a full fledged 5 point Calvinist. Murray is more of a liberal modern persuasion. Pink’s doctrines come from scripture, but I fear Murray’s doctrine is much influenced by humanism and the philosophies of man.

Today I see the Bible, doctrine, and the church under a furious attack which has and is taking its toll on Christianity. I see AW Pink as a hero who refused to follow the path of the downgrade.

2Co 6:14 Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness?
2Co 6:15 And what concord hath Christ with Belial? or what part hath he that believeth with an infidel?
2Co 6:16 And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people.
2Co 6:17 Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you,
2Co 6:18 And will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty.
2Co 7:1 Having therefore these promises, dearly beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.
The modern church has totally mingled itself amongst the heathen and thrown holiness and godliness to the wind.
Mat 7:13 Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat:
Mat 7:14 Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.

I see Pink as a proponent of the narrow way. And I see modern day pastors standing in the midst of the wide gate beckoning to the broad way. Modern day preaching is much to the satisfying of the goats and leaves the sheep starving!

I write this because I feel Murray has much maligned a godly man who kept the godly calling which was upon him to provide a lamp for those who would follow him into an ever darker morass of ungodly doctrine and beliefs. Pink promoted being born again and converted whereas the modern church promotes an intellectual belief wherein more often than not there is no evidence of any inner change in the person whatsoever.

It is interesting that another famous theologian of a puritanical bent by the name of Jonathan Edwards was eventually after the two great awakenings tossed out of his church over his refusal to bend on allowing non-covenant church members (those who showed no signs of saving grace) to partake of communion! For the non-covenant or nominal believers had come to be the majority in his church. As we view the downgrade of the modern church so it all continues at a much accelerated pace!

OK enough of this, on this day the 500th anniversary of the Reformation when Martin Luther tacked up his 95 theses on the church door at Wittenburg, Germany back on Oct. 31, 1517 . Skip the biography – Read Pink with the goal of becoming sufficient entirely in scriptures alone (Sola Scriptura).

May the Lamb that was slain receive the reward of His suffering!! Praise the Lord. Hallelujah and Amen!!

GOD’S ELECT ARE NEVER ALONE

GOD’S ELECT ARE NEVER ALONE

A.W. Pink

“I will not leave you comfortless, I will come to you” (John 14:18). 

‘The marginal rendering here is to be preferred: “I will not leave you orphans.” It looks back to John 13:33 where the Lord had addressed them as “little children”. They were not to be like sheep without a shepherd, helpless believers in a hostile world, without a defender, forsaken orphans incapable of providing for themselves, left to the mercy of strangers. “I will come to you”: how precious is this! Before we go to His place to be with Him (John 14:2 ,3), He comes to be with us!

But what is meant by “I will come to you”? We believe that these words are to be understood in their widest latitude. He came to them corporeally, immediately after His resurrection. He came to them in spirit after His ascension. He will come to them in glory at His second advent. The present application of this promise to believers finds its fulfillment in the gift of the Holy Spirit indwelling us individually, present in the midst of the assembly collectively. And yet we must not limit the coming of Christ to His children to the presence of the Holy Spirit.

The mystery of the Holy Trinity is altogether beyond the grasp of our finite minds. Yet the New Testament makes it clear that in the unity of the Godhead, the advent of the Holy Spirit was also Christ coming, invisibly, to be really present with His own. “Lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the age” (Matthew 28:20). “Christ liveth in me,” said the apostle Paul (Galatians 2:20). “Christ among you, the hope of glory” (Colossians 1:27).

How unspeakably blessed is this! Friends, relatives, yea, professing Christians may turn against us, but He has promised, “I will never leave thee nor forsake thee” (Hebrews 13:5).

“For the mountains shall depart, and the hills be removed; but My kindness shall not depart from thee, neither shall the covenant of My peace be removed, saith the LORD that hath mercy on thee!” [Isaiah 54:10]

Say “Praise the LORD!”

 

FAITH – THE IRREVOCABLE GIFT OF GOD TO HIS ELECT

FAITH – THE IRREVOCABLE GIFT OF GOD TO HIS ELECT

compiled by Michael Jeshurun

Nothing can be foreknown unless it is absolutely certain that it will be, and nothing is absolutely certain to be, except what God has predestinated to be. Therefore God knows what will be because He has predestinated what will be. 

God could not foresee anything good in me except what He purposed to put in me. There is nothing good in me by nature. For “In me, that is in my flesh dwelleth no good thing.” And whatever good thing is there in me now, by grace GOD has put it there.

There are those who say that God has elected certain ones because He foreknew that they would believe. No man can believe until God gives Him faith. But you say faith and believing are the same thing. No they are not! You need to go back to school and learn how to parse, if you say that. “Faith” is a “noun” and “believing” is a verb. And which is it that expresses action? Do nouns express action or do verbs? Why verbs of course!

Now listen! Sight, is God’s gift: seeing is my use of that gift. Breath, the noun is God’s gift: while breathing the verb is my use of that gift. The moment God takes my breath away from me I cannot breathe. The moment God takes my sight away from me I can no longer see. Sight is God’s gift: seeing is my use of the gift. Breath is God’s gift: breathing is my use of that gift. Faith is God’s gift: believing is my use of that gift.

And because faith is God’s gift to me I can never forfeit it, for God never gave it to me as a reward or wages in the first place but gave it to me freely as a love gift. And because He gave it as a ‘gift’ He will never ever take it back. . . . for the gifts of God are without repentance or irrevocable! [Rom 11:29]

“Thanks be unto God for His unspeakable gift!” [2Cor 9:15]

“I am the Lord, I change not!” [Mal. 3:6]

God is perpetually the same: subject to no change in His being, attributes, or determinations. Therefore God is compared to a rock (Deut 32:4, etc.) which remains immovable, when the entire ocean surrounding it is continually in a fluctuating state; even so, though all creatures are subject to change, God is immutable. Because God has no beginning and no ending, He can know no change. He is everlastingly “the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning” (Jas. 1:17).

God has neither evolved, grown, nor improved. All that He is today, He has ever been, and ever will be. “I am the Lord, I change not” [Mal. 3:6] is His own unqualified affirmation. He cannot change for the better, for He is already perfect; and being perfect, He cannot change for the worse. Altogether unaffected by anything outside Himself, improvement or deterioration is impossible. He is perpetually the same. He only can say, “I am that I am” [Ex. 3:14]. He is altogether uninfluenced by the flight of time. There is no wrinkle upon the brow of eternity. Therefore His power can never diminish nor His glory ever fade.

God is immutable in His counsel. “The gifts and calling of God are without repentance” (Rom. 11:29). It must be so, for “He is in one mind, and who can turn Him? and what His soul desireth, even that He doeth” (Job 23:13). Change and decay in all around we see, may He who changeth not abide with thee. God’s purpose never alters. One of two things causes a man to change his mind and reverse his plans: want of foresight to anticipate everything, or lack of power to execute them. But as God is both omniscient and omnipotent there is never any need for Him to revise His decrees. No. “The counsel of the Lord standeth forever, the thoughts of His heart to all generations” (Ps. 33:11). Therefore do we read of “the immutability of His counsel” (Heb. 6:17).

Herein is solid comfort. Human nature cannot be relied upon; but God can! However unstable I may be, however fickle my friends may prove, God changes not. If He varied as we do, if He willed one thing today and another tomorrow, if He were controlled by caprice, who could confide in Him? But, all praise to His glorious name, He is ever the same. His purpose is fixed, His will stable, His Word is sure!

Nothing is more absurd than to imagine that anyone beloved of
God can eternally perish! God’s love for His Elect is immutable, irrevocable, and indestructible. His love is not like man’s. God’s love does not change, ever, under any circumstances or conditions. Having loved His own from eternity, He will never stop loving them in time. There is nothing we can do to destroy, or even lessen, the love of God for us [John 13:1]. “Yea, I have loved thee with an everlasting love: therefore with lovingkindness have I drawn thee!” is His own unfailing Word! [Jer 31:3]

Here then is a rock on which we may fix our feet, while the mighty torrent is sweeping away everything around us. The permanence of God’s character guarantees the fulfillment of His promises: “For the mountains shall depart, and the hills be removed; but My kindness shall not depart from thee, neither shall the covenant of My peace be removed, saith the Lord that hath mercy on thee” (Isa. 54:10).

Praise the Lord!

[Gleaned and paraphrased from the writings of A.W. Pink]

THE GOD OF NOMINAL CHRISTENDOM

THE GOD OF NOMINAL CHRISTENDOM

A.W. Pink
“Men imagine the Most High is moved by sentiment, rather than by principle. They suppose His omnipotency is such an idle fiction that Satan can thwart His designs on every side. They think that if He has formed any plan or purpose at all, then it must be like theirs, constantly subject to change. They openly declare that whatever power He possesses must be restricted, lest He invade the citadel of man’s free will and reduce him to a machine. They lower the all-efficacious atonement, which redeems everyone for whom it was made, to a mere remedy, which sin-sick souls may use if they feel so disposed. They lessen the strength of the invincible work of the Holy Spirit to an offer of the Gospel which sinners may accept or reject as they please.The god of this century no more resembles the Sovereign of Holy Writ than does the dim flickering of a candle the glory of the midday sun. The god who is talked about in the average pulpit, spoken of in the ordinary Sunday school, mentioned in much of the religious literature of the day, and preached in most of the so-called Bible conferences, is a figment of human imagination, an invention of maudlin sentimentality. The heathen outside the pale of Christendom form gods of wood and stone, while millions of heathen inside Christendom manufacture a god out of their carnal minds. In reality, they are but atheists, for there is no other possible alternative between an absolutely supreme God, and no God at all. A god whose will is resisted, whose designs are frustrated, whose purpose is checkmated, possesses no title to deity, and far from being a fit object of worship, merits nothing but contempt.”  [A.W. Pink]
 “And so the way is prepared for that caricature of gospel preaching, that consists chiefly in begging the sinner to come to Jesus before it is too late, leaves the false impression that it is quite in his power to come today or tomorrow, or whatever time may be convenient to him, and that presents a very willing but powerless Jesus, that would ever be pleased to save the sinner, but is incapable to do so unless the sinner gives his consent. The “whosoever will may come” is presented as meaning: “All men can will to come whenever they please.” And instead of the truth of the gospel that no man can come to Christ unless the Father draw him, we now hear; “No, Christ cannot come to the sinner, unless the sinner permit him!”
Here is a fair example of it: “God is ready, God is willing, God is eager, God is anxious, God is pleading for the privilege of washing away the sins of every soul in the precious blood of His son and heir. But His hands are tied, His power is limited, His grace is constrained by you. If you want to be saved, God is willing to save you. If you don’t want to be saved, there isn’t anything that even God can do to rescue you from that pit of eternal burning.” That is what becomes of the preaching of the gospel when the truth of God’s sovereign grace is either forgotten or denied. Call it the gospel, if you like; to me it is nothing short of blasphemy of the name of the living God! An anxious and pleading God, whose power is limited, and whose hands may be tied by the proud and stubborn sinner, who is less than dust of the balance, is no God, but a miserable idol!”  (Herman Hoeksema (1886-1965) in “Whosoever Will”).

SEVEN STRANDS IN THE ROPE WHICH BIND THE ELECT TO GOD

SEVEN STRANDS IN THE ROPE WHICH BIND THE ELECT TO GOD

A.W. Pink

“My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me: And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of My hand. My Father, which gave them Me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of My Father’s hand.” – (John 10:27-29)

No stronger passage in all the Word of God can be found guaranteeing the absolute security of every child of God. Note the SEVEN STRANDS in the rope which binds them to God.

FIRST, they are Christ’s sheep, and it is the duty of the shepherd to care for each of his flock! To suggest that any of Christ’s sheep may be lost is to blaspheme the Shepherd Himself.

SECOND, it is said “They follow” Christ, and no exceptions are made; the Lord does not say they ought to, but declares they do. If then the sheep “follow” Christ they must reach Heaven, for that is where the Shepherd is gone!

THIRD, to the sheep is imparted “eternal life”: to speak of eternal life ending is a contradiction in terms.

FOURTH, this eternal life is “given” to them: they did nothing to merit it, consequently they can do nothing to demerit it.

FIFTH, the Lord Himself declares that His sheep “shall never perish,” consequently the man who declares that it is possible for a child of God to go to Hell makes God a liar.

SIXTH, from the SHEPHERD’S “hand” none is able to pluck them, hence the Devil is unable to encompass the destruction of a single one of them.

SEVENTH, above them is the FATHER’S “hand,” hence it is IMPOSSIBLE for them to jump out of the hand of Christ even if they tried to. It has been well said that if one soul who trusted in Christ should be missing in Heaven, there would be one vacant seat there, one crown unused, one harp unstrung; and this would grieve all Heaven and proclaim a disappointed God.

But such a thing is utterly impossible!

THE CHRISTIAN IN THE WRONG PLACE

THE CHRISTIAN IN THE WRONG PLACE

A.W. Pink

“I am thoroughly convinced that one of the chief hindrances today to many of the Lord’s people enjoying their inheritance is that they are in their WRONG PLACE, they are where Christ is not: he is on the outside of EVERYTHING CORPORATE.

To be where he is not is to miss the place of blessing, is to have our peace disturbed, and is to be corrupted by those who are not walking with Him. I am more firmly convinced today than I was 14 months ago that our place is on the ‘outside of the camp’. That is the place of reproach, loneliness, and of testing; but as it is the place where CHRIST is, it is, necessarily, the place of blessing, peace and joy”.
[A.W. Pink in his letter to the Colemans. Quoted from ‘The Life of Arthur W. Pink’ – Iain H. Murray]

“COME OUT FROM AMONG THEM, AND BE YE SEPARATE, SAITH THE LORD! [2 Corinthians 6:17].

And what will follow when this Divine command is obeyed? Why, then we shall prove the truth of those words of Christ: “If ye were of the world, the world would love his own: but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world HATETH you (John 15:19). WHICH “world” is specifically in view here? Let the previous verse answer: “If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before it hated you.”

WHAT “world” hated Christ and hounded Him to death? The RELIGIOUS world, those who pretended to be most zealous for God’s glory. So it is now. Let the Christian turn his back upon a Christ—dishonoring Christendom, and his fiercest foes and most relentless and unscrupulous enemies will be those who claim to be Christians themselves!

“Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you… for My sake. Rejoice, and be exceeding glad” (Matthew 5:11,12).

Ah, my brother, it is a healthy sign, a sure mark that you are profiting from the Word, when the religious world hates you. BUT IF, ON THE OTHER HAND, YOU STILL HAVE A “GOOD STANDING” IN THE “CHURCHES” OR “ASSEMBLIES” THERE IS GRAVE REASON TO FEAR THAT YOU LOVE THE PRAISE OF MEN MORE THAN THAT OF GOD! [Profiting from the Word]

Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, AND TOUCH NOT the unclean thing.” [2Cor6:14,17]

O my Christian reader, seek grace to obtain the uncompromising spirit of Moses. When urged to worship God in “Egypt” (i. e. the white-washed “churches” OF THE WORLD), say it is impossible, for “what communion hath light with darkness!” when pressed to leave your children in a worldly Sunday School, to be instructed by those who have not the fear of God upon them, refuse, when invited to at least retain your membership in the HOLY SPIRIT-DESERTED “CHURCHES” and contribute of your means to their upkeep, decline to do so.

That going forth to meet the Lord is to be understood as expressing both external and internal action. Externally, it signifies separation from the world, especially its pleasures, for Christ will not be met with while we waste our time engaging in them. “Be not unequally yoked together with unbelievers… come out from among them” (2 Corinthians 6:14-17) must be heeded if we would “meet the Bridegroom.” More particularly, their going forth denoted a turning of their backs upon the apostate ECCLESIASTICAL SYSTEM: Christ had informed His disciples that he had abandoned a Judaism which had rejected Him (Matthew 23:37, 38), so if they would meet with Him, they too must “go forth unto Him outside the camp” (Hebrews 13:15). THE SAME IS TRUE NOW. [Practical Christianity]

[Writing to Lowell Green, September 2, 1934]
My earnest advice is for you to have little or NOTHING TO DO with the people of the religious world today. They CANNOT help you spiritually, and where they help not they are bound to HINDER! Be much in prayer and on your guard against a holier-than -thou attitude. if we are not very watchful, separation soon leads to self- righteousness. On the other hand, association with empty professors soon corrupts and paralyzes true spirituality.

Prayer, reading and meditation will do far more for your soul – with God’s blessing on the same – than attending meetings and being active in ‘Christian service’

ALL MEN HAVE NOT FAITH – FOR GOD GIVES IT NOT TO ALL MEN

ALL MEN HAVE NOT FAITH – FOR GOD GIVES IT NOT TO ALL MEN

No man can believe until God has given him faith. WHERE is your ‘proof-text’ for that preacher? Alright good, because I don’t want you to accept anything from me unless I can prove it by God’s Word. Do not accept anything from any preacher no matter who he is unless he gives you a “Thus saith the Lord!” to back it up with.

Now turn to Ephesians 2:8,9 “For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.” Faith is not of yourselves. “Believing” is, just as seeing is (a gift). Now turn to II Thessalonians 3:1,2 and brothers and sisters in Christ, THIS is what I wish that you would pray for this preacher: “Finally, brethren, pray for us, that the word of the Lord may have free course, and be glorified, even as it is with you: And that we may be delivered from unreasonable and wicked men: for all men have not faith.” The word “men” is in italics here and it is correct because he is speaking of ‘men’ in the first part of the verse. “that we may be delivered from unreasonable and wicked men for all men have not faith.” WHY do not all men have faith? Because God does not give it to all! THAT is the reason why all men do not believe. Well, you say, WHY does not God give it to all? You must ask Him.

Now I must pass on to something else –  2Peter 1:1 –  “Simon Peter, a servant and an apostle of Jesus Christ, to them that have EXCERCISED like precious faith.”  No, sir, it does not say that! “to them that have OBTAINED like precious faith!” From WHOM did they open it? The third verse tells us, “According as His divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness.” It was His divine power that gave us all things that pertain to life and to godliness.

God foresaw and God forknew that not a single member of the human race ever would believe if He left them to themselves. Consequently in His own Sovereign Grace He purposed to give faith to His own elect. Well, you say, where is your proof of that? The first verse of Titus. I’m going to keep you close to the scriptures tonight: “Paul, a servant of God, and an apostle of Jesus Christ, ACCORDING TO THE FAITH OF GOD’S ELECT”  Their you have it staring you right in the face! It is coming at you like a cannonball. And you had better duck your head if you want to escape it! You had better bow before it! For God in His Word says, “the faith of God’s elect” and “all men have not faith” WHO do have? Those to whom God gives it! To whom does He give it? His elect! WHY does He give it to them and nobody else? That is His business and that is one of the things that is hard to the understood.

[Quoted from one of A.W. Pink’s transcribed sermons preached at the Tabernacle, Ashfield, New South Wales – June 1925]

THE SPIRITUAL SIGNIFICANCE OF THE NUMBER SEVEN IN SCRIPTURE

THE SPIRITUAL SIGNIFICANCE OF THE NUMBER SEVEN IN SCRIPTURE

Like nature, mathematics proves the existence of the spiritual, and in scripture numbers play a very important role. Numbers are very significant to the Jews. There is even a book called ‘Numbers’ in the Bible.

While we reject all forms of Pagan ‘Numerology’ as we do Astrology, we do not deny the significance of numbers in the Word of God!

In his book ‘Why four Gospels’ A.W. Pink writes concerning the number Seven–

“It is striking to discover how frequently this numeral is found here, and when we remember the significance of this numeral it is even more arresting. Seven is the number of perfection, and absolute perfection is not found until we reach God Himself. How wonderful, then, that in this Gospel which sets forth the Deity of Christ, the number seven meets us at every turn!

By seven different persons is the Deity of Christ confessed here, and, as we have seen seven times does He fill out the ineffable “I am” title. John records seven miracles performed by our Lord during His public ministry, no more and no less. Seven times do we read, “These things have I spoken unto you.” Seven times did Christ address the woman at the well. Seven times, in John 6, did Christ speak of Himself as “The Bread of Life.”

Seven things we read of the Good Shepherd doing for His sheep, and seven things Christ says about His sheep in John 10. Seven times does Christ make reference to “the hour” which was to see the accomplishment of the Work given Him to do. Seven times did He bid His disciples pray “in His name.” Seven times is the word “hate” found in John 15. There are seven things enumerated in John 16:13,14 which the Holy Spirit is to do for believers. There were seven things which Christ asked the Father for believers in John 17, and seven times over does He there refer to them as the Father’s “gift” to Him. Seven times in this Gospel do we read that Christ declared He spoke only the Word of the Father—John 7:16; 8:28; 8:47; 12:49; 14:10; 14:24; 17:8. Seven times does the writer of this Gospel refer to himself, without directly mentioning his own name. There are seven important things found in John which are common to all four Gospels. And so we might continue. Let the reader search carefully for himself and he will find many other examples”.

When man began to analyze and combine numbers, he developed other interesting symbols. He took the perfect world number FOUR and added to it the perfect divine number, THREE, and got SEVEN, the most sacred number to the Hebrews.

In the Book of Revelation the number SEVEN is used throughout. There are SEVEN churches, SEVEN Spirits, SEVEN stars, SEVEN seals, SEVEN trumpets, SEVEN vials, SEVEN personages, SEVEN dooms, and SEVEN new things. SEVEN symbolizes Spiritual Perfection. All of life revolves around this number. SEVEN is used over 700 times in the Bible. It is used 54 times in the Book of Revelation.

“In the days of the voice of the SEVENTH angel, when he shall begin to sound the mystery of God should be FINISHED.”

“And the SEVENTH angel poured out his vial into the air; and there came a great voice out of the temple of heaven, from the throne saying, It is DONE.” (Revelation 16:17)

The word CREATED is used SEVEN times in connection with God’s creative work. (Genesis 1:1; Genesis 1:21; 1:27 (three times); 2:3; and 2:4). God created all things in the beginning and then took six days of restoring His creation and then rested on the SEVENTH day. (Genesis 2:1-3). He appointed SEVEN days for the week, and most, if not all advanced nations reckon time in that way: SEVEN days to the week. Few ever stop to think of why there are SEVEN days in a week. Do atheists and infidels give God and the Bible credit for it?

There are SEVEN notes in the musical scale. All other pitches are only variations of these. When the musician uses the eighth note he goes back to “do” and starts over. Man named the notes but God fixed the sounds, even as God fixed the days of the week, and man named them.

On the day of atonement the high priest sprinkled the blood upon the mercy seat SEVEN times. (Leviticus 16:14) This is a picture of the COMPLETENESS of the redemptive work of Christ.

When Israel took the city of Jericho God told them to march around the city SEVEN times. Thus, on the SEVENTH day, when they marched around the city SEVEN times, they COMPLETED their marching. (Joshua 6:1-16)

There were SEVEN branches on the CANDLESTICK in the Holy Place in the Tabernacle and this pictures the COMPLETE light of God for the souls of man.

Solomon was SEVEN years in building the Temple and kept the Feast for SEVEN days. Job had SEVEN sons. When his friends came to visit him they sat SEVEN days and SEVEN nights in silence, and afterward they were required to offer a Burnt Offering of SEVEN bullocks and SEVEN rams. Naaman washed SEVEN times in the Jordan. The Saviour spoke SEVEN words from the Cross. SEVEN men of honest report were chosen to administer the alms of the church in Acts 6:1-7. There were SEVEN years of plenty and SEVEN years of famine in Egypt during the days of Joseph.

SEVEN times the Book of Life is mentioned in the Bible. The Book of Revelation is a Book of SEVENS. We have SEVEN churches, SEVEN seals, SEVEN Trumpets, SEVEN Personages, SEVEN vials (sic), SEVEN dooms, SEVEN new things. SEVEN SEVENS make up this Book . It is the COMPLETENESS of all things.

Jesus said to “forgive SEVENTY times SEVEN“ In other words, He is saying, “Keep on forgiving until you are complete.” Even the duration of Israel’s great punishments was based upon this law of SEVENS. Their captivity in Babylon was for SEVENTY years, ten periods of SEVENS. (Jeremiah 25:11-12; Daniel l9:2)

Life operates in a cycle of SEVENS. Changes take place in the body every SEVEN years. There are SEVEN bones in the neck, SEVEN bones in the face, SEVEN bones in the ankle, and SEVEN holes in the head. Most births are multiple of SEVENS. The hen sits three weeks (21 days); the pigeon two weeks (14 days); after having laid eggs for two weeks. Of 129 species of Mammalia (sic) the majority have a period from conception to birth of an exact number of weeks, a multiple of SEVEN.

Human physiology is constructed on a law of SEVENS. Children are born to mothers in a certain number of weeks usually 280 days, a multiple of SEVENS. Fevers and intermittent attacks of gout, ague, and similar complaints have a period of operation of SEVEN, FOURTEEN or TWENTY-ONE days knows as critical days.

All departments of nature are marked all over with mathematics. In this realm practically everything is in SEVENS. Notice next time the shape of frost when it crystallizes on the window. Notice the small snow flakes. It is wonderful how God formed everything in a pattern of SEVENS.

It would be well for the reader to always remember the SEVEN means COMPLETENESS or SPIRITUAL PERFECTION. Whenever you come to a SEVEN in the Word of God read the meaning and the message is plain.

Now isn’t that interesting?! Let men say what they may, but I am persuaded that nothing in Scripture is by chance or unintentional. Even the number 40 in Scripture is very significant of testing and trial, and you would be amazed at the occurrence of this number if you did a study on it.