"THOU SHALT SURELY DIE!" (PART 7)
Salvation is about God choosing man, it has never been a case of a man's choosing God. The words choose, choosest, chooseth, choosing and chose appear only a total of 7 times in the whole of the New Testament, and in NO instance are any of these words used in reference to a man choosing God. This is a highly significant and quite astonishing fact, which doubtless will come as no small surprise to those who have been taught and believe in man’s free-will decision for Christ. If the doctrine of free will were true, it would be not be unreasonable to expect that at least one of these words in at least one of the almost 8,000 verses in the New Testament would make reference to a man's choosing God. BUT THERE ARE NONE! The Lord Jesus Christ never once told anyone to choose Him, for He did the choosing, and then said, "Follow Me". Now it must be pointed out that these 5 words do appear a total of 87 times in the Old Testament, however, as with the New Testament, there is not one single instance where any of them speak of a man choosing God. Not one verse, in over 23,000 verses of the Old Testament is there to be found, which speaks of a man choosing God. Of great significance is the indisputable fact that in contrast to the limited number of the words choose, choosest, etc., in the New Testament, the single word chosen is used a total of 29 times in the New Testament. Again, not once is this word chosen used in reference to man having chosen God. (for more on this see my book 'Election is Just Not Fair!' at godsonlygospel.com or listen to the message on my Youtube channel)
If any man in his natural sinful state did have a free will to choose God he would not be without God at all, and he would therefore have hope in this world. This is seen in the fact that to want God, to desire, seek and worship God one must be alive to God. Seeing that no man, by nature, does seek God, it must be that all men are inherently dead to God and without any hope, in and of themselves, to ever be alive to God. Man must be born again spiritually, he must be made spiritually alive to God, by God, not so that man can then choose God, but in being made alive to God, by God, man is made to realise that it is God Who has chosen him. No desire, no understanding, no seeking, no worshipping, no craving for and no fear of, the true God is hardly the kind of evidence that would suggest the presence of free will. This is all the direct result of spiritual death, of a complete separation and alienation from God. A separation and alienation from God in our mind, in our spirit and in our everyday life and in our every day religious pursuits. Prior to my salvation, just like any other saved person, I did not know the True God and was never in pursuit of Him in my 'greatest' moments of religious endeavors. I never once even prayed to Him, but only to the gods of the false gospels I believed in. Nobody, by nature, seeks after the true God. There is nowhere in Scripture where, in describing man's spiritually dead-to-God condition, a man is told he must choose God before God makes that man alive. Arminianism teaches that regeneration is not necessary. It teaches that being made alive to God is not necessary for man is not dead to God but only needs the Lord to open a door for him so that he can then exercise his grace-free-will and either decide to go through the door or not. The reality of salvation cannot be seen through the notion of some mythical free will. God has chosen before the foundation of the world those He wanted saved and in time comes to each one of those people and then draws them through the Door to eternal life. Christ says: "No man can come to Me, except the Father which hath sent Me DRAW him..." (Jn. 6:44). This drawing is instigated, not by anything done by the man, but has to be by Divine impulse. If salvation is by grace then it must be that God chooses man, that God comes to the man. If no man can come to Christ, in and of himself, then there is no other possibility of a man's being saved apart from God choosing the man, God coming to the man and drawing that man to Him! No man can will to come before the Father causes the man to come. If God had not elected some to come to Him, no man would ever have come to Him. IT IS WHOMSOEVER GOD WILLS TO COME THAT WILL COME, PROVING ABSOLUTELY THAT NO MAN CAN COME TO GOD BY FREE WILL. “(God) has regard to a definite number; and on that number He intends to bestow eternal life; and no one has a right to complain. It is proof of His benevolence that they are saved; and where none have a claim, where all are justly condemned, God has a right to pardon whom He wills.” Salvation is not the result of a man’s will, nor is it the result of a man’s strenuous, intense efforts, his works and ‘good’ deeds. Election unto salvation is solely of God Who shows mercy, not to all, but exclusively to those HE CHOOSES, and has willed to be merciful towards. The drawing is done by the Lord's teaching those whom He has chosen to come unto His Son: "...Every man therefore that hath heard, and hath learned of the Father, cometh unto Me" (Jn. 6:45; cf. Matt. 16:17; Jn. 6:37). There is no salvation without this learning. The word draw means to drag "...but though this act of drawing is an act of power, yet not of force; God in drawing of unwilling, makes willing in the day of His power (see Psa. 110:3): He enlightens the understanding, bends the will, gives an heart of flesh, sweetly allures by the power of His grace, and engages the soul to come to Christ, and give up itself to Him; He draws with the bands of love." "I have loved thee with an everlasting love: therefore with lovingkindness have I drawn thee" (Jer. 31:3). It is not man who draws God to him but God that draweth the man. Man does not choose God but it is God Who chooses man and causes the man to approach Him: "Blessed is the man WHOM THOU CHOOSEST and CAUSEST to approach unto Thee..." (Psa.65:4). Scripture makes it translucently clear that man without the true God has no desire for the true God. Man without God is simply unacceptable to Him, and an abhorrent sight. And no man can become righteous by his own attempts at obedience in the sight of God. The only 'way' a man has to make himself right with God is by obeying the law perfectly but he can never do this for Scripture says "...by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in His sight..." (Rom. 3:20; cf. Jas. 2:10). An unjustified man is a spiritually dead man. Only the man who has been made alive to God stands justified before Him, because God has made him so. There is nothing man can do to restore his relationship with the true God even if he did desire Him. Man is without God, and, therefore, without hope. We have just seen the Scriptures say that man is a totally unprofitable creature. Nothing he does, can do, or abstains from doing, is of any profit to him in terms of reinstating himself back into God’s ‘good books’, gaining His favor etc.
Now, I ask you, how can any man have within him something that can produce a desire and will for the true God when Scripture clearly provides irrefutable evidence that nothing within man is of ANY profit to him. Man is without God, which leaves only himself, or others to which he can turn. But all are unprofitable meaning nothing any man can do for himself, or others, will profit him one iota in terms of being approved by God. Psalms 14 and 53 in referring to man say: "...they are altogether become filthy..." "...the word 'filthy' (wxlan), in (Psalm 14:3) and (Psalm 53:3); is translated, 'they are become filthy'; 'they are corrupt'; and, 'they are turned to corruption'; the metaphor is taken from stinking flesh, which is tainted and corrupted, and so good for nothing, hence here rendered 'unprofitable'; for so men being corrupted by sin, are of no use, service, and advantage to God, to men, or to themselves; but, on the contrary, nauseous to God, and to all that are good, and hurtful to themselves and others: for there is none that does good, no, no, one; and therefore must be unprofitable. There is none that can do good in a spiritual manner, without the grace of God, strength from Christ, and the assistance of the Spirit; and there is not even a spiritual man, that can do good perfectly, and without sin". To be unprofitable is to be useless. "This word, 'unprofitable' in Hebrew means to become 'putrid' and 'offensive,' like fruit that is spoiled. In Arabic, it is applied to 'milk' that becomes sour. Applied to moral subjects, it means to become corrupt and useless. They are of no value in regard to works of righteousness." There is nothing in man, by nature, which is not corrupted, and if man is useless and corrupt by nature then it stands to biblical reason that everything in man is also utterly useless. And yet, free willers continue to vainly chant the truthless mantra of lost men: 'Man can by his free will choose God'.
The Scriptures prove man's spiritual state as one that is utterly hopeless for he does not even understand God, let alone want God. There is nothing within man that draws him, or can draw him, to the true God. Proof of this is seen in Christ's words when He said "No man can come to Me, except the Father which hath sent Me draw him..." (Jn. 6:44). Nothing in Christ's words would suggest the presence of free will in any man. 'No man can', dare I say it, strongly implies that no man can. No man can draw the Father to him. This all works hand in glove with the Psalmist's words found in Psalm 110:3: "Thy people shall be willing IN THE DAY OF THY POWER..." which strongly implies that without God's Power no man is, or can ever be willing. The Arminian believes that God comes to him and with prevenient grace enables man to make a free will decision for God. God's grace does not influence the man neither does it cause the man to choose God for God's grace, they say, never interferes with a man's free will. Arminians say that God's grace enables them, or empowers them, to make a free will decision for God. They attribute their decision to God's grace, they say, and, therefore, do not see it as a work. Many who proudly claim to be believers in the Arminian gospel say they could not have made their decision for God without the grace of God. However, this runs contrary to what the Arminian gospel says in that the decision made is a free will decision. It is not made because of irresistible grace, but is a decision which is independent of grace for they call it a free will decision, it is totally of man. A decision made completely free of God's 'interference'. So, in reality many so called Arminians do not really believe the Arminian gospel for they see their work of choosing God something which is only possible by the grace of God. One thing is for certain, both variants of Arminianism deny biblical grace for one says it is a free will independent of grace and the other says it is in cooperation with grace. But Jesus does not say any of this at all. Christ declares that no man can come, therefore, no man can choose to come to Him except by the act of the Father drawing. Unless the Father by His lovingkindness draws the man to His Son no man can be saved, thus proving that all men are dead and have no hope, in and of themselves, and are without God. Nothing in Christ's words as found in John 6 even remotely hints at a man's will for He only speaks of a man coming to God by an act of God. The only time a man is willing is after he is saved, when he is visited in the day of God's power and made alive unto Him, not when 'free will' allegedly rises up within him in the day of man's 'power'. The Psalms also add: "Blessed is the man whom THOU choosest, and causest to approach unto Thee..." (Psa. 65:4). Here we see God as the one who chooses man and not man who wills to choose and come to God. God, and not man's mythical free will, is the catalyst which causes a man to come to Him. God says: "...I have loved thee with an everlasting love: therefore with lovingkindness have I drawn thee" (Jer. 31:3). Scripture speaks of praising God for what He has done in salvation for the hopeless, useless man: "Come and hear, all ye that fear God, and I will declare WHAT HE HATH DONE for my soul" (Psa. 66:16). No saved man ever boasted 'Come and see what I have done for my soul'. Nothing within natural man has the capacity to cause the man to seek after the true God, let alone anything which can draw God to him! So, Mr. Arminian, don't call it spiritual death, insist that man has a free will to choose God, argue about the word 'die', deny election and the Sovereign God of grace all you like, it will do you no good whatsoever for the Word of God declares that there is NOTHING in man by nature that draws, or can draw, him to God. The only way a man can be attracted, and drawn to God is by God Himself! God in action is what grace is all about. Grace points only to God, and salvation is only through, and because of, God. Believe what you want about Arminianism, or Pelagianism, or whatever other ism there may be, READ THE SCRIPTURES AND SEE FOR YOURSELF WHAT GOD SAYS, HOW GOD DESCRIBES MAN'S SPIRITUAL STATE BEFORE HIM AND HOW A MAN IS SAVED!
All mankind has been rendered useless (which is what the word unprofitable means as used in Romans 3) by sin, and is the penalty which man's disobedience to God has drawn. No amount, or degree of subsequent attempts at obedience, including the free will response to God's 'offer', will profit man one iota, for he is spiritually dead to begin with. He is under a curse which only God can remove! To think that man in his spiritually dead state can do anything to come to God, to recommend himself to God and to draw God's affection toward Him, is like pleading the case for Adolf Hitler being a good man for since his death he has not committed any sin! It is ludicrous. Nothing man does can in any way be beneficial to him or bear fruit in the sight of God, for "A corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit" (Matt. 7:17ff. cf. Lk. 6:43). Man is like the corrupt tree in the sight of God and all man's fruit is corrupted and evil and, therefore, useless. To believe the Gospel is the fruit of a blessed, incorruptible tree. To believe in a false gospel is the fruit of an accursed tree. Paul the apostle said, "For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh,) dwelleth no good thing..." (Rom. 7:18 cf. Gen. 6:5). "There could not possibly be a stronger expression of belief of the doctrine of total depravity. It is Paul’s own representation of himself. It proves that his heart was wholly evil. And if this was true of him, it is true of all others." John 2:25 tells us that Jesus "...needed not that any should testify of man: for He knew what was in man." In every man by nature dwelleth no good thing! "Behold, He putteth no trust in His saints; yea, the heavens are not clean in His sight. How much more abominable and filthy is man, which drinketh iniquity like water?" (Job 15:15,16).
Nothing man is able to do can attract the favor of God. Nothing man is allegedly enabled to do can attract God either for God's attraction to a man does not come from the man but from God's own purpose and will. "Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us..." (Titus 3:5). God chooses whom He will according to His mercy and grace is what the Scriptures teach and by nothing that a man is, or does, for God is not a respecter of persons (see Rom. 2:11; Acts 10:34; Eph. 6:9). God does not, nor does He need to, make a man attractive to Him, so that He can then save him. The Word of God teaches that God saves the ungodly. No man is deserving of salvation by anything he is, or does, a fact which is quite evidently seen in that God "...justifieth the ungodly..." (Rom. 4:5). If there were anything about a man which attracted God to him he would no longer be ungodly for God's attraction to him would show that there was some redeeming feature which the man possessed. God does not save the ungodly because they have done good but does it solely based on His Sovereign grace. Therefore, man can do nothing that will attract God to him. Nor is there any need for God to enable the man to do anything which will attract God to him, or so that He can love him, for salvation is by grace. "For the Lord your God is God of gods, and Lord of lords, a great God, a mighty, and a terrible, which regardeth not persons, nor taketh reward" (Deut. 10:17). "God bestows His favours, whether in a way of providence or grace, according to His Sovereign will and pleasure, without regard to the works and merits of men, their characters or circumstances: nor taketh reward or bribes, to avert threatened and deserved judgments." Salvation is no debt which God owes man but a gift which God grants to whomsoever He wills. God saves based on Himself and not on who a man is or what a man has done. "...for though God, as a Judge, respects no man's person; yet in matters of grace He distinguishes one person from another, as it is plain He does by the bounties of his Providence. Besides, God is not bound to any person by any laws, but acts as a Sovereign; He is not moved by anything in the creature; as His choice is not confined to persons of any particular nation, family, sex, or condition, so neither does it proceed upon anything, or a foresight of anything in them, or done by them; and as there is no worthiness in them that are chosen, and saved above others, so no injury is done to the rest: add to all this, that those that are saved by virtue of electing grace, are saved in a way of righteousness agreeably to the holy law, and strict justice of God; so that no complaint can be made against the distinguishing methods of grace, upon the foot of strict justice."
There is nothing which man, by nature, can do that can persuade God to do any good toward him. Not even man's best can do anything to attract God to him for: "...every man at his best state is altogether vanity....every man IS vanity" (Psa. 39:5,11). Man by nature is a vain, unprofitable and useless creature. How could free will fit in with all that! THE WAY TO GOD IS EITHER BY GRACE OR WORKS: WHAT GOD DOES OR THROUGH WHAT A MAN DOES. SCRIPTURE SHOWS CLEARLY THAT SALVATION CAN NEVER BE ATTAINED BY WHAT IS IN MAN OR BY WHAT A MAN CAN DO, AND SO, IT IS MADE ABUNDANTLY AND PERFECTLY CLEAR THAT SALVATION ONLY COMES BY GRACE: BY WHAT GOD DOES. Salvation does not come by what man does or by what God and man do, but only ever by what God alone does. For thousands of years man has vainly searched for a way to God but his search has proven fruitless for, at best, all spiritually dead man has ever had is a zeal without knowledge that can only tell him he must, and therefore can, do something that will recommend him to God, for: "...being ignorant of God's Righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the Righteousness of God" (Rom. 10:3). This verse is an awesome reminder that salvation is by the grace of God, for ignorance of salvation being all by grace leaves a man with only one recourse and that is to try and establish a righteousness of his own. A man who believes he must do something and who seeks to ‘work his way to Heaven’, to establish a righteousness of his own, is ignorant of the grace of God for he is ignorant of the Righteousness of Christ which comes by grace through the gift of Faith. There remains a curse upon all men who “…seek justification by obedience, in part, or completely” (see Gal. 3:10,11). This reveals all gospels other than God’s Gospel, as accursed gospels for they all teach that man must do something to either get saved or stay saved. The apostle Paul pronounced all who follow after false gospels as accursed (see Gal. 1:8,9). The word accursed meaning: “without hope of being redeemed; a person or thing doomed to destruction”. The Gospel of God is His only power unto salvation (see Rom. 1:16,17). To preach or believe in another is to “…nullify the Death of Christ”. All false gospels are, ultimately, an attack upon the Atoning Death of Christ, and only those who remain under the curse of Adam believe them. All the apostle Paul, whilst a Pharisee, had and relied upon was his own righteousness. He believed it profited him greatly. But when made alive unto God, made a new creature in Christ, he repented of his own righteousness and wanted only that of Christ's: "...what things were gain to me, those I counted loss for Christ....and I count all things but loss (no profit) for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for Whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung, that I may win Christ, and be found in Him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the Faith of Christ, the Righteousness which is of God by Faith" (Phil. 3:7-9). The Psalmist is also of the same mind: "I will go in the strength of the Lord God: I will make mention of Thy Righteousness, even of Thine only" (Psa. 71:16; cf. Jer. 23:6). "I will greatly rejoice in the Lord, my soul shall be joyful in my God; FOR HE HATH CLOTHED ME with the garments of salvation, HE HATH COVERED ME with the robe of Righteousness..." (Isa. 61:10; cf. Zech. 3:4). All that man does is done, as it were, with his back toward God for he does not know God. Scripture teaches that man, by nature, does not seek God, but his own righteousness, so how can man ever seek to court favor with the True God? This is all due to man’s sinful nature and spiritual deadness, his separation from God, and therefore his estrangement from God's Way to salvation and a true spiritual life.
No man by nature seeks the true God. This is quite a statement, for on the surface it would appear that many billions of people are currently seeking after 'God'. They are genuine and serious in their search for 'God' and salvation but these things do not, in and of themselves, ensure that any of them are seeking after the true God. In fact, the Word of God says "There is NONE that understandeth, there is NONE that seeketh after God" (Rom. 3:11; cf. Psa. 10:4). Man, by nature, "...has no understanding of things spiritual; no spiritual knowledge of God; no true sense of themselves, their sin and misery; nor do they truly know the way of salvation by Christ; nor have they any experience of the work of the Spirit of God upon their souls; nor any experimental knowledge of the doctrines of the Gospel" (see 1 Cor. 2:14). That no man seeks after the true God is a most revealing statement of truth in that it shows that man has no inherent desire for the true God. That he is spiritually cut off from God, severed from the ability to even discern, or, differentiate the true God from all false gods. There was a song written many years ago, the lyrics of which were partly made up of the following: "And I still haven't found what I'm looking for". These lyrics portray a picture which perfectly encapsulates the spiritually dead state of man as he wanders about in the darkness aimlessly seeking that which he does not know, cannot discern and which, therefore, he will never find. The phrase, aimlessly seeking, is the perfect description of a religious, yet, spiritually dead man. Any ‘search for God’ conducted by lost man will always prove to be a fruitless one for he does not know God, and so, can never find Him. What every man needs is the true God but he has never found, nor can he ever find, Him, for he does not seek Him and would not recognise Him anyway even if he could find Him, for man is spiritually blind and dead to the true God. Religions abound with sincere and dedicated followers who believe they are on a spiritual pilgrimage in search of the True God, but the truth that simply will not go away, the truth that there are none that seek after the true God, remains a permanent fixture in the history of man’s religious pursuits. God is not playing games here. He is extremely serious and quite adamant when He declares that there are NONE who seek after Him. THIS IS THE ULTIMATE STATEMENT CONCERNING MAN'S 'FREE WILL' FOR NONE HAVE, OR CAN, WILL TO SEEK AFTER THE TRUE GOD. Again, what good can free will do for man when there is no man that seeks after God? No man seeks the true God for all men are, by nature, SPIRITUALLY DEAD TO GOD. And who is there to deny this when it is God Himself Who has said it? This being the case what good would any remaining post-Fall spirituality do for a man when it has never, can never and will never lead any man to seek after the true God? God means what He says and He says what He means. So whatever it is that man is doing in all his religious pursuits and whoever his ‘free will’ is choosing, there is one thing of which we can be certain he is not doing or choosing, and that is seeking after and choosing the true God thus evidencing man's spiritually dead and lost state. Man is lost in a wilderness of his own making, a darkness, in which God does not reside.
The only biblically logical reason as to why there is no man who seeks after God is that man is spiritually dead to the true God. How else would you explain the fact that not a single person since the Fall of man, has even for one moment sought after the true God? There are no alternatives when one does not know the Truth, but error, false gods and false gospels. No man, according to his fallen, sinful nature, has ever sought after the true God for all men are without hope and all men are without God. How can you even begin to find a loophole in man's spiritual condition before God through which you will be able to squeeze in any hope that man can do something in his hopeless and Godless state? The Word of God shuts down ALL possibility of this when it clearly states that no man even seeks after the true God. "NO MAN CAN" IS THE DIRECT RESULT OF THE FALL OF MAN IN TERMS OF HIS DOING ANYTHING, IN AND OF HIMSELF, TO GET BACK TO GOD. Man is blind to the true God and sits in spiritual darkness. Man does not know God, he does not see Him, and, therefore, cannot seek Him. The only one which spiritually dead man can see, seek and know is the god of this world, Satan, who has blinded the eyes of all those to whom the Gospel, and the God of that Gospel, is hid: "But if our Gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost: in whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the Light of the glorious Gospel of Christ, Who is the image of God, should shine unto them" (2 Cor. 4:3,4). Satan is, literally, the god whom this world worships! He does not present himself as a single entity but comes in many guises in order to reach and deceive as far and wide an audience as he can. He is Buddha to some, he is any one of a number of Shinto gods called Kami, he is Shiva and Vishnu and all of the other 330 million gods of Hinduism. Satan does not present himself to the Roman Catholic as he does to the Hindu, or to the Mormon as he does to a Shintoist. "The phrase 'god of this world' indicates that Satan is the major influence on the mind-set expressed by the ideals, opinions, goals, hopes and views of the majority of people. His areas of influence also encompass the world's philosophies, education and commerce. The thoughts, ideas speculations and false religions of the world have sprung from his lies and deceptions....Satan's philosophies are the fortresses in which people are imprisoned, needing to be set free and brought captive to Christ in obedience to His Truth."
Man's spiritually dead state, which has blinded him to the true God, is the evidence which explains why a man bows down to statues of birds, animals and mere men. Man's being spiritually dead to the true God has made him alive to every false god. Man is not dead to any of his imagined gods, which are nothing but false gods, nor to the god of this world but only to the True God. If this were not the case then surely the Lord would not have said that there are none who seek after Him but that some seek after Him. Since this is patently not the case we must agree with the Lord Jesus' words in reply to the question, who can be saved: "...the things which are impossible with men are possible with God" (Lk. 18:27). Only by the power of God does a man seek after Him (see Psa. 65:4). God did not say there are none who are religious, but that there are none who seek after Him. Obviously, then, we have a clear picture that RELIGION IS NOT THE WAY TO GOD!! EVERYTHING OUTSIDE OF TRUE CHRISTIANITY IS NOTHING BUT VAIN MAN’S RELIGION. Plenty of people are religious but the Lord says that none, not even religious people, seek after Him. These teachings complement each other perfectly and form a mutually supportive alliance. Only a man who has been made spiritually alive to the true God is dead to every false god and religion. The fact that God states there are none who seek after Him is enough to send shock waves throughout the religious world, for it accentuates the reality that man in his natural state is alienated from, and dead to, God. That man in his natural state is a hater and despiser of the true God, a walking 24/7 blasphemy against God, for there are none who seek or desire Him. Man, by nature, does not recognise God for he does not know God and so he does not seek or desire the true God. Man’s natural hatred of God is revealed by the fact that the Gospel of God, the preaching of the Cross, is foolishness unto every man by nature. "...the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness..." (1 Cor. 2:18). Man may laugh and mock and count foolish the Gospel of Christ, but their laughter is the laughter of the lost, for "...the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned" (1 Cor. 2:14 cf. Rom. 1:16,17; 1 Cor. 1:18). Man is spiritually dead, and must be made alive by God. Natural man does not, indeed cannot, receive the things of the Spirit of God for these things are discerned spiritually and not by the carnal mind. One must be made spiritually alive by God to the things of God in order to see, understand and believe His Holy Gospel. The spiritually dead, or carnal, man must be made alive. "...man's understanding, which is shut unto him, must be opened by Divine power, and a superior spiritual light must be thrown into it; at most he can only know the literal and grammatical sense of the things of the Spirit of God, or only in theory, notionally and speculatively, not experimentally, spiritually, and savingly." Many people are wary of certain doctrines merely because there are many who argue against them. But simply because there is opposition to a teaching is no evidence, in and of itself, that what is being taught is not the Truth of God. Opposition, being opposed to something, is no guarantee that what a person is arguing for has any truth in it. All those who stand in opposition to the doctrines of grace reveal their ignorance of the Truth of God, and, thus, their dead to God state.
Man does not understand God nor the way to God hence the myriad of religions with their vain and countless ways, profitless plans and failed methods of seeking and reaching God. Because man is no seeker of the True God, but only those gods of his vain imagination, it stands to biblical reason that man does not desire the True God, but only a god of his own imagination which has convinced him he is the true God. To be religiously inclined is seen by the world as being a spiritual person, but in reality the pursuit of false gods is only the result of man simply following his carnal ways and lusts of the flesh for he no longer has any true spiritual inclination. If he did he would surely seek after the true God. Natural man has only a deathly, carnal attraction to the gods which come from his own imagination or that of others. All religion can offer a man is a life imprisoned by laws and duties which must be performed for there to be any chance that one can be saved. Only the Truth of Christ makes a man free (see Jn. 8:32) This also definitively shows that any man who is saved, is saved by the will and purpose, grace and mercy of God through His Son the Savior Jesus Christ, which in turn proves conclusively that man cannot save himself or choose to be saved. A man may say to himself, or others that he wants to be saved, but when presented with the only way to salvation, man, by nature, rejects it, for he has no attraction, or desire for salvation the True God's way.
Man cannot come to the true God unless God comes to the man first. Therefore, no true Christian claims that he came to God first for if this were true then we would have to do away with the whole Bible for Scripture says: "We love Him, because He first loved us" (1 Jn. 4:19). This is a dynamic and eternal principle of grace. A MAN CAN ONLY LOVE GOD BECAUSE GOD FIRST CHOSE TO LOVE THE MAN. 1 John 4:10 says: “Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us, and sent His Son to be the Propitiation for our sins.” The preceding verse tells of the love of God being manifested toward His chosen “…because that God sent His only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through Him” (1Jn. 4:9). THIS is all due, not because of our loving God, but of His loving us! Christians love God ONLY because He loved them AND sent His Son as the Propitiation for their sins. Christ being sent into the world to save His people from their sins is the manifestation of God’s love for His chosen, and which preceded their love towards Him. “The love of God is antecedent to the love of His people; it was when theirs was not; when they were without love to Him, yea, enemies in their minds, by wicked works, and even enmity itself, and therefore was not procured by theirs; but on the contrary, their love to Him is caused by His love to them; hence His love, and a continuance in it, do not depend on theirs; nor does it vary according to theirs; wherefore there is good reason to believe it will continue, and never be removed; and this shows the Sovereignty and freeness of the love of God, and that it is surprising and matchless.” Anything apart from this cannot be grace. Add anything to, or take away any part from, 1 John 4:10 or 4:19 and you no longer have the Sovereign God of grace. Grace is God choosing man and not man choosing God (see Jn. 15:16). Grace is God searching for His sheep until He finds them, and not about man finding God, for it is not God Who is lost but man. Lost sheep do not seek for a way back home, but simply walk around following each other eating the grass which is before them oblivious to the fact they are lost. Scripture describes Christians as having been “…as sheep going astray; but are now returned unto the Shepherd and Bishop of your souls” (1 Pet. 2:25; Isa. 53:6; Ezek. 34:23). God’s lost sheep were, “… lost in Adam, and by his fall, and by their own actual transgressions; they are as sheep going astray from the shepherd, and from the flock, going out of the right way, and in their own ways; and are, like sheep, stupid and insensible of their danger; and as they never return of themselves, until they are sought for, and brought back: hence it follows, ‘but are now returned’; not returned themselves, but were returned by powerful and efficacious grace: saints are passive, and not active in first conversion; they are turned, not by the power of their own free will, but by the power of God's free grace; they are returned under the illuminations and quickenings of the blessed Spirit, and through the efficacious drawings of the Father's love, unto Christ”. Far from seeking the shepherd, lost sheep left to themselves can only remain perilously lost. "The flocking and following instinct of sheep is so strong that it caused the death of 400 sheep in 2006 in eastern Turkey. The sheep plunged to their death after one of the sheep tried to cross a 15-meter deep ravine, and the rest of the flock followed". Salvation, being spiritually alive to God, is by the grace of God and is not obtainable or accessible by a work of man's, with or without the grace of God. No man, by nature, seeks the true God and so no man has any intrinsic love for the True God. If there is no love, there can be no attraction or desire, hence, the defining declaration of Scripture that a man loves God only because God loved him first. A Christian's love for God springs, not from himself but, from God's love for him. If God did not love any no one would love Him.
Scripture delivers a knockout blow to the lie that man is not spiritually dead to God in two other verses: "But as many as received Him, to them gave He power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on His name: Which were born (again), not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, NOR OF THE WILL OF MAN, but of God" (Jn. 1:12,13). The saved man receives God by Faith, but that Faith, of course, is not his own natural faith but a gift from God granted by His grace according to His will and for the purpose of salvation. Notice, too, that the man who receives God does not do so by his own will but of God's will. The man who receives God does so only because he has been born again by the will of God. Prior to reconciliation with God Scripture says that man was an enemy of God: "For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God BY THE DEATH OF HIS SON, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by His life" (Rom. 5:10). It is not by the will of man that salvation comes but only by the Will of God. Even if man did have a free will of his own to choose God it would not come into play at all for a man is saved only by the will of God: "Of HIS own will begat He us with the Word of Truth..." (Js. 1:18) and again, "...to them that believe on His name....were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man but of God" (Jn. 1:12,13), and "...the Son quickeneth (makes alive) whom HE will" (Jn. 5:21). These Scriptures further substantiate the fact that man, and his so called free will, is dead in sin and dead to God. That man cannot choose his way out of spiritual death FOR HE IS DEAD!! Man must be chosen by Almighty God and made alive according to His will and by His grace.