On Free Will, by the same speaker, thinking my thoughts, but with more lucidity:

(a bit long for a YouTube, but worth the time spent in viewing it)

What should happen when one embraces the truth of Sovereign Grace is eventually an attitude of overarching humility and a destruction of prideful moralism. Without regard to the correctness of our Christian soteriology, we all still struggle with the bent of our old nature, though. I have collected all the swag, those metaphorical tee-shirts and bumper stickers, to know that such is true. I still have those struggles.

As an aside and in context to discussions that revolve around issues of free will, I really, intensely, dislike that “God does not want robots to love Him” thing. I have heard it too many times and from good people, but I know that conceit is sometimes driven by a prideful emotionalism that leads to errant, unbiblical conclusions. It ultimately leads to place where we find a needy God Who tries to make Himself attractive to us so as to woo us. We often find, too, a faux therapeutic gospel.

There is nothing attractive about the cross, that Roman torture and death machine. The foot of the cross is for rebels who hate the true God and have no place for Him, ultimately for you and me. It is only His sovereign grace  and His ability to replace a heart of stone with a heart of flesh that draws us to the beauty of the Messiah. Too, that door you hear about in altar calls upon which sad, patient Jesus is always plaintively knocking, hoping that somebody might open it for Him….it is not the door to the heart of the unregenerate, an evangelical call, but was the door to the church in first century Laodicea, a damaged, complacent, body of believers.

I think about the following, and quite popular, video, one I have watched and commented on before. I know that it has ministered to many people on some level, and I do not question the authenticity of their faith.

However, and without regard to how strongly this video tugs on ones emotional strings, I think it unbibically portrays fallen humanity more as victim than rebel, than sinner. I also find egregious error in its depiction of a god who waits helplessly on the sidelines for the victim to decide, or find within themselves the ability to reach out for help to Himself.

Also, that worried, hand-wringing portrayal of god is not the sovereign, settled, in-control of everything in the created order Triune God revealed in the  Biblical texts. He does not struggle to draw His people too Himself. This portrayal of God in the following skit, comforting and approachable as he may seem, stands in sharp contrast to the completely sovereign God, the one who captured my own darkened heart and sin-bound will.

I do not need a God who simply throws me a rope and then struggles to clear a path for me so as to, when I finally make my way to him, simply dust me off and dance with me. None of that is the Gospel.  I need a God who breaths life into me. Again, I am not merely a victim, but a perpetrator, and I need a sovereign Savior. I love Him, albeit so weakly, so falteringly in my humanity in contrast to which He is worthy, because He sovereignty drew me to himself when I was in death-bound rebellion against Him. If you think that makes me a robot, than so be it.


One more thought: How bold must someone be to portray God in a skit? I think of Peter who deemed himself unworthy to even be crucified in the same manner as our Messiah, asking instead to be crucified upside down.

In conclusion, here is some text from the same Gospel that gave us John 3:16:

John 6:44 No man can come to me, except the Father which has sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day.

John 6:65 And he said, Therefore said I unto you, that no man can come unto me, except it were given unto him of my Father.

John 15:19 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.


One thought on “The Lens of Grace and John 3:16

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