Posted by: Bill Hornbeck | November 27, 2018

“Well then, God has granted to the Gentiles also the repentance that leads to life.”

Today’s devotion comes from Luke 5:29-32.

“And Levi gave a big reception for Him in his house;  and there was a great crowd of tax collectors and other people who were reclining at the table with them.  The Pharisees and their scribes began grumbling at His disciples, saying, “Why do you eat and drink with the tax collectors and sinners?”  And Jesus answered and said to them, “It is not those who are well who need a physician, but those who are sick.  I have not come to call the righteous but sinners to repentance.”  Luke 5:29-32.

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“But He gives a greater grace. Therefore it says, “GOD IS OPPOSED TO THE PROUD, BUT GIVES GRACE TO THE HUMBLE.”  James 4:5.

“Because you say, “I am rich, and have become wealthy, and have need of nothing,” and you do not know that you are wretched and miserable and poor and blind and naked, I advise you to buy from Me gold refined by fire so that you may become rich, and white garments so that you may clothe yourself, and that the shame of your nakedness will not be revealed;  and eye salve to anoint your eyes so that you may see.  Those whom I love, I reprove and discipline;  therefore be zealous and repent.”  Revelation 3:17-19.

The sinners and tax collectors were not more humble, nor more prone to seek God and repent, than the righteous.  

Nor were the Gentiles more humble, more prone to seek God and repent, than the Jews.

“…  Not at all;  for we have already charged that both Jews and Greeks are all under sin;  as it is written,

“THERE IS NONE RIGHTEOUS, NOT EVEN ONE;
THERE IS NONE WHO UNDERSTANDS,
THERE IS NONE WHO SEEKS FOR GOD;
ALL HAVE TURNED ASIDE, TOGETHER THEY HAVE BECOME USELESS;
THERE IS NONE WHO DOES GOOD,
THERE IS NOT EVEN ONE.”  Romans 3:9-12.

God unconditionally chose those whom He desires to save according to His purpose, including granting the saving gifts of repentance and faith to those whom He chose. 

Consider the following of what the Canons of Dordt state in part in FIRST HEAD OF DOCTRINE Of Divine Predestination.

“Article 7.  Election is the unchangeable purpose of God, whereby, before the foundation of the world, he hath out of mere grace, according to the sovereign good pleasure of his own will, chosen, from the whole human race, which had fallen through their own fault, from their primitive state of rectitude, into sin and destruction, a certain number of persons to redemption in Christ, whom he from eternity appointed the Mediator and Head of the elect, and the foundation of Salvation. 

This elect number, though by nature neither better nor more deserving than the others, but with them involved in one common misery, …

Article 9.  This election was not founded upon foreseen faith, and the obedience of faith, holiness, or any other good quality of disposition in man, as the pre-requisite, cause or condition on which it depended;  but men are chosen to faith and to the obedience of faith, holiness, etc., therefore election is the fountain of every saving good;  from which proceed faith, holiness, and the other gifts of salvation, and finally eternal life itself, …”

“For consider your calling, brethren, that there were not many wise according to the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble;  but God has chosen the foolish things of the world to shame the wise, and God has chosen the weak things of the world to shame the things which are strong, and the base things of the world and the despised God has chosen, the things that are not, so that He may nullify the things that are, so that no man may boast before God.  But by His doing you are in Christ Jesus, who became to us wisdom from God, and righteousness and sanctification, and redemption, so that, just as it is written, “LET HIM WHO BOASTS, BOAST IN THE LORD.”  1 Corinthians 1:26-31.

“And He did so to make known the riches of His glory upon vessels of mercy, which He prepared beforehand for glory, even us, whom He also called, not from among Jews only, but also from among Gentiles.”  Romans 9:23-24.

“When they heard this, they quieted down and glorified God, saying, “Well then, God has granted to the Gentiles also the repentance that leads to life.”  Acts 11:18.


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