37 All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out.
38 For I came down from heaven, not to do mine own will, but the will of him that sent me.
39 And this is the Father's will which hath sent me, that of all which he hath given me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up again at the last day.
40 And this is the will of him that sent me, that every one which seeth the Son, and believeth on him, may have everlasting life: and I will raise him up at the last day.
Here is the full-fledged mystery of election. “All that the Father giveth me shall come to me” as well as “every one which seeth the Son, and believeth on him, may have everlasting life.” Side by side sovereignty and human choice are given to us to believe.
“That ye also have seen me, and believe not.” Jesus makes a very big point about His coming. He came to set men free from their sin, and did not come to condemn any. “Whoever rejects the Son will not see life, for God’s wrath remains on him.” And again: “For God sent not His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.” (John 3) To understand the just view of God, I think I need to go all the way back to Genesis. In Genesis, when my forefather sinned, he condemned the whole of the human race. God would have been entirely just to let man perish; instead He chose to send the Son to freely redeem all who come to Him. All who come to Him, not just part. The offer is an offer made to the whole world, but of course God foreknew from the beginning of time those who would or wouldn’t come.
I think this is why Jesus could make so many statements in His ministry that are far beyond me. He could look at a man, know his heart, and the way that man was going to go. So we have statements like: “But He did not commit Himself to any of them, for He knew all men.” (J. 2:24) There is no point at which we the created can surprise the Creator. He is so far above us, knowing all ends from the beginning, that such a surprise could never be. I read somewhere recently (wish I remembered where) that if even one surprise like that were to occur, God would be no longer God. Jonathan Edwards certainly argued persuasively that God would not be able to plan anything out if such surprise were possible.
Judicially then the human race is condemned; it is the unmerited mercy of God that He deigned to extend grace to mankind. That is the coming of the Son. Pardon granted to all those who all who come to Him freely and without condemnation. Christ died for all sins and when I believed He had already died in time past, and yet had died for all my sins, which all were future then. The sins which I have not yet committed—those too Christ died for. If ever I dwell on the Grace of God, the penalty suffered for me, and the pardon which is given to me, how shall I then live? To live other than striving to be an obedient adopted son should be unthinkable—yet I know my hard heart and how quickly I can turn from what I should be. With Paul, I must shout, “Thanks be to God—through Jesus Christ our Lord!”
1. Blessed assurance, Jesus is mine!
Oh, what a foretaste of glory divine!
Heir of salvation, purchase of God,
Born of His Spirit, washed in His blood.
2. Perfect submission, perfect delight,
Visions of rapture now burst on my sight:
Angels descending bring from above
Echoes of mercy, whispers of love.
3. Perfect submission, all is at rest,
I in my Savior am happy and blest:
Watching and waiting, looking above,
Filled with His goodness, lost in His love.
This is my story, this is my song,
Praising my Savior all the day long;
This is my story, this is my song,
Praising my Savior all the day long.
Lyrics: Frances Jane (Fanny J.) Crosby