Home > Calvinism, Election > The Reformed Doctrine of Predestination Chapter XIX- That it represents God as a respecter of persons, or as unjustly partial

The Reformed Doctrine of Predestination Chapter XIX- That it represents God as a respecter of persons, or as unjustly partial

The Reformed Doctrine Of Predestination

Chapter XIX

That It Represents God as a Respecter of Persons, or as Unjustly Partial

2. GOD IS NO RESPECTER OF PERSONS

A “respecter of persons” is one who, acting as judge, does not treat those who come before him according to their character, but who withholds from some what is justly theirs and gives to others what is not justly theirs—one who is governed by prejudice and sinister motives, rather than by justice and law. The Scriptures deny that God is a respecter of persons in this sense; and if the doctrine of Predestination represented God as doing these things, we admit that it would charge Him with injustice.

In the Scriptures God is said to be no respecter of persons, for He does not choose one and reject another because of outward circumstances such as race, nationality, wealth, power, nobility, etc. Peter says that God is no respecter of persons because He makes no distinction between Jews and Gentiles. His conclusion after being divinely sent to preach to the Roman centurion, Cornelius, was, “Of a truth, I perceive that God is no respecter of persons; but in every nation he that feareth Him and worketh righteousness is acceptable to Him,” Act_10:35. Throughout their entire past history the Jews had believed that they as a people were the exclusive objects of God’s favor. A careful reading of Act_10:1 to 11:18 will show what a revolutionary idea it was that the Gospel should be preached to the Gentiles also.

Paul likewise says, “Glory and honor and peace to every man that worketh good, to the Jew first, and also to the Greek; for there is no respect of persons with God,” Rom_2:10, Rom_2:11. And again, “There can be neither Jew nor Greek, there can be neither bond nor free, there can be no male and female; for they all are one man in Christ Jesus.” Then he adds that it is not those who are Jews externally, but those who are Christ’s that are in the highest sense “Abraham’s seed,” and “heir  according to the promise,” Gal_3:28, Gal_3:29. In Eph_6:5-9 the slaves and the masters are commanded to treat each other justly; for God, who is the Master of both, is no respecter of persons; and likewise in Col_3:25 the relations between fathers and children and between wives and husbands are included. James says that God is no respecter of persons because He makes no distinction between the rich and poor, nor between those who wear fine clothing and those who are plainly dressed (2:1-9). The term “person” in these verses signifies, not the inner man, or the soul, but the outward appearance, which often carries so much influence with us. Hence when the Scriptures say that God is no respecter of persons they do not mean that He treats all people alike, but that the reason for His saving one and rejecting another is not that one is a Jew and the other a Gentile, or that the one is rich and the other poor, etc.

Loraine Boettner- The Reformed Doctrine of Predestination

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