Sunday, July 5, 2009

Three Impossibilities from John 6

Image by Tony Reinke -

Sam Storms spends several chapter in his book Chosen for Life discussing sections of Scripture relevant to divine election. You can see here how he engages different sections of the New Testament:

7. Unconditional Election (1): The Gospels and Acts
8. Unconditional Election (2): The Epistles and Revelation
9. Unconditional Election (3): Romans 9:1-13
10. Unconditional Election (4): Romans 9:14-23
11. Unconditional Election (5): Romans 9:14-23

In Chapter 7 the author considers a segment of The Gospel of John; John 6:37-40, 44, 65.

All that the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never cast out. For I have come down from heaven, not to do my own will but the will of him who sent me. And this is the will of him who sent me, that I should lose nothing of all that he has given me, but raise it up on the last day. 40 For this is the will of my Father, that everyone who looks on the Son and believes in him should have eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day...No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him. And I will raise him up on the last day...And he said, “This is why I told you that no one can come to me unless it is granted him by the Father.”

Storms draws out 3 impossibilities from these verses:
  1. It is "morally and spiritually impossible for a person to come to Christ apart from the "drawing" of that person by God the Father...Their not coming to Christ is due to their moral and spiritual refusal to do so, a refusal in which they willingly and freely delight."
  2. It is "impossible for someone the Father "draws" not to come to him...all the elect will come to faith in Christ. God's drawing of them is efficacious."
  3. When a person whom the Father has drawn comes it is "impossible for him or her to be cast out...Their life in Christ is eternal and irrevocable because that is the will of the Father, a will or a purpose that the whole of Christ's person and work was designed to secure."
(Chosen for Life, 92-4, emphasis mine)

Storms has shown how the 'God of the Possible' is also the 'God of the Impossible'; and that is a great thing!

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