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Page 135

Canons of Dordt:
Heads III and IV - Articles 8 and 9

Article 8 - As many as are called by the gospel, are unfeignedly called. For God hath most earnestly and truly declared in His Word, what will be acceptable to Him; namely, that all who are called, should comply with the invitation. He, moreover, seriously promises eternal life, and rest, to as many as shall come to Him, and believe on Him.

Article 9 - It is not the fault of the gospel, nor of Christ, offered therein, nor of God, who calls men by the gospel, and confers upon them various gifts, that those who are called by the ministry of the Word, refuse to come, and be converted: the fault lies in themselves; some of whom when called, regardless of their danger, reject the Word of life; others, though they receive it, suffer it not to make a lasting impression on their heart; therefore, their joy, arising only from a temporary faith, soon vanishes, and they fall away; while others choke the seed of the Word by perplexing cares, and the pleasures of this world, and produce no fruit. - This our Savior teaches in the parable of the sower (Mt. 13).


The following stories help illustrate the truth that sinful man's rejection of the gospel does not make its content, invitation, and promise insincere.

    A department manager at Sears placed an ad in the local paper selling a certain snowblower for $425.00 that normally sold for $549.00.

    However, hardly any snow had fallen that winter, and now that it was March, people reading his ad did not feel they needed a snowblower. No one responded to the manager's ad.

    That no one was interested or responded, did not make the content, invitation, and promise of the manager's ad insincere, however. Anyone interested could have received a snowblower for the stated price.

    God's external call is His "advertisement," His proclamation, of His gospel. Its content, invitation, and promise are sincere even when sinful people are not in- terested in, and do not respond to it. What is offered in the external call of the gospel? What is the price? Why does fallen man despise this offer?

  • Unfeignedly - Sincerely; uprightly; without pretence or deceit
  • Comply - To fulfill; to agree; to act according to the wish or command expressed

  •  

    Because I have called, and ye refused; I have stretched out My hand, and no man regarded;

    But ye have set at nought all My counsel, and would none of My reproof:

    I also will laugh at your calamity; I will mock when your fear cometh.

    - Proverbs 1:24-26

    But whereunto shall I liken this generation? It is like unto children sitting in the markets, and calling unto their fellows.

    And saying, We have piped unto you, and ye have not danced; we have mourned unto you, and ye have not lamented.

    - Matthew 11:16-17

    O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, thou that killest the prophets, and stonest them which are sent unto thee, how often would I have gathered thy children together, even as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, and ye would not!

    - Matthew 23:37

     

    Jesus died to secure the salvation of His children, but His payment is of infinite value, sufficient to expiate, to atone for, the sins of every sinner on earth. How do these two truths relate to God's two callings?


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