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Sunday Quote April 22, 2007

Posted by larrylaz in Quotes.
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Joe,

I trust the Lord showed Himself powerful through you this morning in your preaching.  Thanks for praying for us.  I’ve got to say that last night’s message on the light of the Gospel shining in our hearts was one of the sweetest times of worship I have ever experienced.  I can’t pinpoint exactly why this time was so special, but I finished my message last night with the distinct feeling of God’s pleasure.  May the Lord give us many more such times!

Anyway, here is a quote that I read on Challies’ website the other day, from a biographer of John Wesley.  I thought it connected well with what we had written about earlier in the week with regard to understanding those who disagree with us and treating their viewpoints charitably.  The biographer is commenting on a sermon Wesley preached called Free Grace, in which he spoke in opposition to the doctrine of unconditional election.  Here’s the quote:

There is in it something of that provoking glibness with which young or half-cultivated people settle in a few sentences questions that have exercised the deepest minds ever since the dawn of speculation. Wesley was neither young nor uncultivated, but that incapacity for seeing difficulties which is characteristic of an early stage of culture, was a part of his nature.

In this sermon he does not once confront the difficulties which must be accepted by any one who, from his point of view, should reject predestination. He does not see that, if the design of Christ was to save all and the result is that He only saves some, His work was a failure. Indeed, it is evident on reading this sermon, that, of all the deep works which had been written on the subject, Wesley had never read one; he had taken it for granted that the opinion he set himself to confute could be held by none but fools, and his confutation was condemned to that futility by which all such arrogance is punished.

No doubt the sermon produced an effect, for it was preached with all his heart; but that effect, we may confidently assert, was not to shake one mind which had laid hold of the doctrine of election.

I know that you have read that sermon and did not exactly think highly of it, brother.  But let us strive, to treat opposing viewpoints from ours with more integrity than it appears Wesley did in this sermon.

Catch you tomorrow, Lord willing,

Larry

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