God’s Grace – Free and Eternal

Posted: Thursday, February 13, 2014 in Pastoral, Whitefield


The following is a letter written by George Whitefield on Jan. 31, 1740 from Savannah, GA to his sister. It is a testimony of Whitefield’s unwavering belief in the saving and sustaining grace of God purchased and secured in our glorious redemption by Christ. I think you will find the doctrines of grace set forth in this letter!

 

My dear Sister,

I rejoice to hear that you are enabled to see not only the freeness but eternal duration of God’s grace. Till the sinner is convinced of this, I am persuaded he can neither work from a principle of true love, nor give Jesus Christ the honour due unto his name. He must always be making his salvation to depend partly at least on his own doings ; “If I do so and so, Jesus Christ will give me his grace:” But can any believer who knows himself, help confessing, that after he received grace, he should have finally fallen from it, had the continuance of it depended on his own will? Indeed, my dear Sister, nothing so much comforts my own soul as the thought that God will never leave me nor forsake me ; if he does, it must be for my unworthiness : But on that account it cannot be ; for he never chose me on account of my unworthiness. He loved me freely, he prevented me by his grace ; he chose me from eternity, he called me in time, and I am persuaded will keep me till time shall be no more.– This consideration makes my faith to work by love. Now, I can live not barely upon my frames, which notwithstanding are blessed things, but on the promises. Now, I can go on my way rejoicing, and, amidst all dejections, lift up my head in prospect of a certain and exceeding weight of glory. Though I fall, I know i shall rise again ; for he that is brought truly to believe in Jesus Christ, his faith shall never die. The Lord Jesus will not suffer to be lost the purchase of his blood. He knew for whom he died, and neither men nor devils shall ever pluck them out of his hands. Such as have been taught most by God, I find, are thus minded. And I am persuaded were the effects of our Lord’s redemption to depend on a man’s own compliance, or was the continuance of God’s grace to depend solely on man’s improvement, Jesus Christ would have died in vain. Adam could not stand in paradise when left to his own free will, how then can we? No, blessed be God, our salvation is put into better hands than our own. Jesus Christ has purchased not only wisdom, righteousness, and sanctification, but also eternal redemption for us. Let this thought, me dear Sister, lift up our hands when they hang down, and strengthen our feeble knees ; God’s gifts and callings are without repentance. There is no condemnation to them that are truly in Christ Jesus. And I write thus peremptorily to you, because I find now you are able to bear it.– Blessed be God! my dear Sister, flesh and blood has not revealed this unto you. I hope ere long our brethren will lay all carnal reasoning aside, and see and preach the truth in this respect, as it is in Jesus. My kindest love to your sister.– What I write to one, I write to both. The Lord direct your going in his way, and cause you to continue instant in prayer for
                                                                                Your weak brother and servant in Christ,
                                                                                                                               G. W.

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