A picture of irresistable grace


As a person of the "reformed" persuasion, I from time to time will hear folks argue against the doctrine known as Irresistible Grace (the "I" in TULIP). The argument usually goes like this: "Of course God's grace is not irresistible. People resist it all the time. Jesus lamented over Jerusalem for this very reason." Well, my response is, of course people resist Him. I don't deny that. I still find myself resisting him at times. All people are witness to the grace of God in creation, in His providence over all things. It is that knowledge and sometimes even more, the Gospel of Christ Himself, that they resist. That is the problem with mankind. That is sin. We resist the grace of God, preferring lesser things - ourselves and other created things. And that is why it takes a miracle of grace to overcome our sinful resistance. It takes a new creature with new eyes and a new heart to welcome the grace of God as our old eyes and hearts never would.

Then of course the question of will comes up. "Man has a will after all. God won't force anyone," is the argument. Well, that, too, rather misses the point. The will is the problem. The will is not free. It is the servant of a depraved and sin-loving heart. And it's true, God will not force that heart to love what it hates, as though a forced love would be any love at all. When God overwhelms a soul with His saving grace it is not by force. It is as if there was a beauty so great it could overwhelm blindness with sight. It's like the voice of Christ overwhelming the deafness of the dead ears of Lazarus so that he not only heard but lived. This is the miracle of new birth. It completely converts the evil heart of man from a hard stony thing to a warm and beating one, responsive, hungry for the beauty of the One who transformed it.

Do you not believe such things happen - that unwilling wills can be changed willingly by an overwhelming force? Well, I God gave us a beautiful metaphor of his irresistible grace in front of the watching world this week. You've likely heard by now of the phenomenon named Susan Boyle.
When you watch, look at the faces of the audience and judges - cruel and mocking, poised to strike. Then watch what happens as those hard hearts are overwhelmed. Be warned, you'll need a hanky.



Comments

Andy C said…
I wanted to watch the video but it appears to be a bad link.

Nice summary of the "I" and sounds like a nice story as well.
Laurie M. said…
Okay, Andy. It's up and running now. Thanks for the heads up! I hate when I put up a bad link.
WhiteStone said…
What a voice! That was cool to watch! To see their stunned faces!
Debbie said…
I watched that video earlier today and had chills. In fact, I planned to use it as an illustration for a blog post. I didn't know they disabled it though. But what a great example of a change. Initially, everyone was laughing at Susan. But as she sang her heart out so beautifully, it was amazing to see the change on the people's faces.
LiNdSeY said…
WOW! That is precious! I love those underdog stories! I guess we all have one when I think about it, and all because of Him! thanks that was great.... and yeh, I needed a tissue! :)
Betsy Markman said…
Great post!
It's amazing how you and I both posted on Susan Boyle, but went in completely different directions with it. I wonder how many different blog posts that woman has inspired in the past few days. Truly remarkable.

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