What error is Farmer Tanner making in his reasoning? Why is his mistake a costly one? God is not obligated to bless any farmer's planting, for no one has lived perfectly or deserves it. But, what do you observe regarding God's desire to graciously bless the use of His means?
Imagine a sinner reasoning, "Everything regarding my life is determined in God's plan. Nothing I do or do not do will alter God's plan. It is already determined in God's plan if I will be saved or not. Therefore I will not actively use the means of grace. If God has determined to save me, He will; and if not, then He won't, no matter how much I seek Him. Besides, I cannot produce any spiritual life or growth; I cannot even understand how it happens,"
What error is this person making in his thinking? Why is his mistake a costly one? God is not obligated to bless any sinner's use of the means, for no one has lived perfectly or deserves it, But what do you observe regarding
God's desire to graciously bless the use of the means?
God commands sinners to seek, knock, and ask for His saving grace, to actively use His means of grace. This is His revealed will. God's secret will, the actual sinners He has graciously elected to save, does not dismiss His revealed will. We may never separate God's means from His ends. God has determined whom He will graciously save, but He has also determined the means through which He will do so.
Ho, everyone that thirsteth, come ye to the waters, and he that hath no money; come ye, buy, and eat; yea, come, buy wine and milk without
money and without price.
Wherefore do ye spend money for that which is not bread? and your labour for that which satisfieth not? hearken diligently unto Me, and eat ye that which is good, and let your soul delight itself in fatness.
Incline your ear, and come unto me: hear, and your soul shall live; and I will make an everlasting covenant with you, even the sure mercies of David. Behold, thou shalt call a nation that thou knowest not, and nations that knew not thee shall run unto thee because of the LORD thy God, and for the Holy One of Israel; for He hath glorified thee.
Seek ye the LoRD while He may be found, call ye upon Him while He is near;
Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the LoRD, and He will have mercy, and abundantly pardon.
For as the rain cometh down, and the snow from heaven, and returneth not thither, but watereth the earth, and maketh it bring forth and bud, that it may give seed to the sower, and bread to the eater:
So shall My Word be that goeth forth out of My mouth: it shall not return unto Me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it.
-Isaiah 55:1-3; 5-7; 10-11
The secret things belong unto the LoRD our God: but those things which are revealed
belong unto us and to our children for ever, that we may do all the words of this law.