July 13, 2004

No Apology by C.H. Spurgeon

"Jacob have I loved, but Esau have I hated." Romans 9:15.

There is a man up in the gallery there, that, work as hard as he likes, he cannot earn more than fifteen shillings a week. And here is another man that gets a thousand a year. What is the reason of this? One is born in the palaces of kings,while another draws his first breath in a roofless hovel. What is the reason of this? God's providence--God puts one man in one position, and another man in another.

Here is a man whose head cannot hold two thoughts together, do what you will with him. Here is another who can sit down and write a book, and dive into the deepest of questions. What is the reason of it? God has done it.

Do you not see the fact that God does not treat every man alike?He has made some eagles, and some worms; some he has made lions, and some creeping lizards; he has made some men kings, and some are born beggars. Some are born with gigantic minds, and some verge on the idiot. Why is this? Do you murmur at God for it? No. You say it is a fact, and there is no good in murmuring. What is the use of kicking against facts? It is only kicking against the pricks with naked feet, and you hurt yourself and not them. Well, then, election is a positive fact. It is as clear as daylight, that God does, in matters of religion, give to one man more than to another. He gives to me opportunities of hearing the word, which he does not give to the Hottentot. He gives to me, parents who, from infancy, trained me in the fear of the Lord. He does not give that to many of you. He places me afterwards in situations where I am restrained from sin. Other men are cast into places where their sinful passions aredeveloped. He gives, to one man a disposition which keeps him back from some lust,and to another man he gives such impetuosity of spirit, and depravity turns that impetuosity so much, that the man runs headlong into sin.

Again, he brings one man under the sound of a powerful ministry,while another sits and listens to a preacher whose drowsinessis only exceeded by that of his hearers. And even when they are hearing the gospel, the fact is God works in one heart when he does not in another. Though, I believe to a degree, the Spirit works in the hearts of all who hear the Word, so that they are all without excuse, yet I am surehe works in some so powerfully, that they can no longer resist him, but are constrained by his grace to cast themselves at his feet, and confess him Lord of all; while others resist the grace that comes into their hearts; and it does not act with the same irresistible force that it does in the other case, and they perish in their sins, deservedly and justly condemned. Are not these things facts? Does any man deny them? Can any man deny them? What is the use of kicking against facts? What, then, is the use of our discussing any longer? We had better believe it, since it is an undeniable truth. You may alter an opinion, but you cannot alter a fact. You may change a mere doctrine, but you cannot possibly change a thing which actually exists.

There it is--God does certainly deal with some men better than he does with others. I will not offer an apology for God; he can explain his own dealings; he needs no defence from me. There stands the fact. Before you begin to argue upon the doctrine, just recollect, that whatever you may think about it, you cannot alter it; and however much you may object to it, it is actually true that God did love Jacob, and did not love Esau. WHY did God love Jacob?Because of his sovereign grace. There was nothing in Jacob that could make God love him; there was everything about him, that might have made God hate him, as much as he did Esau, and a great deal more. But it was because God was infinitely gracious, that he loved Jacob, and because he was sovereign in his dispensation of this grace, that he chose Jacob as the object of that love."He will have mercy on whom he will have mercy." And rest assured, the only reason why any of us can hope to be saved is this- the sovereign grace of God. There is no reason why I should be saved, or why you should be saved, but God's own merciful heart, and God's own omnipotent will.