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Martyred for the Gospel

Martyred for the Gospel
The burning of Tharchbishop of Cant. D. Tho. Cranmer in the town dich at Oxford, with his hand first thrust into the fyre, wherwith he subscribed before. [Click on the picture to see Cranmer's last words.]

Collect of the Day

The Fifth Sunday after the Epiphany.
The Collect.

O LORD, we beseech thee to keep thy Church and household continually in thy true religion; that they who do lean only upon the hope of thy heavenly grace may evermore be defended by thy mighty power; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Daily Bible Verse

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Calvin Against the Lordship Salvationists and Eternal Insecurity: Calvin's Calvinism

Why is this exhortation? Is it that they might live in fear and uncertainty as to the issue? By no means. But that, nestling under the shadow of the wings of God, they might continually commit themselves unto His care, depending on Him alone, and so resting in His almighty power, as not to doubt of their being victorious unto the end. -- John Calvin

Then follows another objection of Pighius: "It is not without purpose (says he) that Paul warns all the faithful to take heed that they 'receive not the grace of God in vain,' Nor is it without a purpose, that Christ exhorts all His disciples to 'watch and pray.'" But if we understand and hold fast the important difference between the unconcerned security of the flesh and that tranquil staidness of mind which faith produces, the knot of this objection is untied at once. Believers ought to rest in the certainty of their salvation. But for what end? That they might lie still in sleepy quiet? That they might throw themselves down in cowardly indolence? Oh, no! But rather that, as they thus enjoy a quiet rest in God, they might give themselves the more unto prayer. Paul exhorts such to "work out their salvation with fear (timore) and trembling'' (tremore) (Philippians 2:12). Why is this exhortation? Is it that they might live in fear and uncertainty as to the issue? By no means. But that, nestling under the shadow of the wings of God, they might continually commit themselves unto His care, depending on Him alone, and so resting in His almighty power, as not to doubt of their being victorious unto the end. For Paul immediately subjoins the reason why the faithful should be thus anxious to shelter under the wings and omnipotent power of God: "For it is God (saith he) that worketh in you, both to will and to do of His good pleasure" (Philippians 2:13). Moreover, that the faithful might not remain in hesitation and suspense, he had already relieved them from all possible doubt. "Being confident (saith he) of this very thing, that He which hath begun a good work in you, will perform it unto the day of Jesus Christ" (Philippians 1:6). The Holy Spirit, therefore, nowhere exhorts us to the care and exercise of prayer under any idea that our salvation fluctuates in a state of uncertainty or doubt, for it rests safely in the hand of God. He nowhere imposes upon us a fear which might tend in any way to shake our confidence in the free love of God. No! The blessed Spirit, by such exhortations as these, designs only to quicken our natural slothfulness and unconcern.

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