No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws him. And I will raise him up on the last day.
The wisdom of man says that unless our love for God proceeds from our own initial willingness to worship Him, then it is not truly love, but a robotic and forced relationship.
The problem with this assertion is that no man in himself is actually willing to love the true God until God opens the man’s eyes to His goodness in the first place. The will is only free to love that which is according to it’s nature; and the fallen nature is at its core a rejection of and a blindness to God’s goodness. To despise this fact is to despise the riches of God’s mercy.
“Seek and you shall find” was Christ’s admonition to those who are already His own disciples, and it was regarding prayer.
“There is not one who seeks after God” is the apostle’s precise description of fallen humanity without Christ.
“We love because He first loved us.”
– This means that unless He first freely loved me so as to open my eyes, I could never have freely loved Him. I may have sought my own earthly conception of Him; but that is not why He decided to have mercy upon me. He chose to show mercy before the foundation of the world for the glory of His own Name; and I dare not be so arrogant as to suggest that He simply foresaw that I was somehow more spiritually sensitive than others. I was in fact spiritually dead; that is what He foresaw. But His foreknowledge is a powerful personal knowing of the sinner which redeems them; this is what it means that He foreknew me.
It is written in the Prophets, ‘And they will all be taught by God.’ Everyone who has heard and learned from the Father comes to Me…
Pleading with men’s free will and intellectual desires does not win them to Christ; it rather wins them to a god who must always bow to their demands of mercy, as though it were an “inalienable right.” It brings them to worship a spiritually libertarian god of “fairness” who is obligated to give all sinners a “chance;” rather than the holy God of justice who was not lawfully required to save even a portion of such self-entitled, demonic wretches, yet who did.
The great conumdrum of the gospel is not how God can be fair if He chooses not to redeem every soul; it is rather how He can remain uncompromisingly just if He redeems any.
As the scripture says:
He that justifieth the wicked, and he that condemneth the just, even they both are abomination to the Lord.
Therefore, the only Just One condemned Himself willingly under the wrath of God, that He might justify many wicked.
That is not fair.
But it was made to be just.
And those whose hearts He hardens, He hardens justly; for there is no one who of themselves seeks after God.
Let no man answer back to God, in any matter. Let them only come to Him, if by His gracious will they will come.
At that time Jesus declared, “I thank you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that you have hidden these things from the wise and understanding and revealed them to little children; yes, Father, for such was your gracious will. All things have been handed over to Me by My Father, and no one knows the Son except the Father, and no one knows the Father except the Son and anyone to whom the Son chooses to reveal Him.
Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”
(I beat this dead horse not because in doing so I think I will raise it; but in obedience to He who raises the dead.)