CHAPTER IV : OF FINAL PERSEVERANCE
The fifth and last point of Arminianism implies that saving grace is not an abiding principle, but that those who are loved of God, ransomed by Christ, and born again of the Spirit, may (let God wish and strive ever so much to the contrary) throw all away, and perish eternally at last.
The doctrine of the perseverance of the saints will therefore be considered in this last chapter; and the position to be defended is: That true and saving grace cannot be totally and finally lost.
For the better understanding of this I shall enquire: First, What is saving grace? Second, What is it to fall totally and finally? Third, What arguments can be assigned, or reasons given, to evidence that this special saving grace cannot be totally and finally lost?
First Inquiry. What is saving Grace?
Second Inquiry. What is it to fall totally and finally?
Third Inquiry. What scriptural arguments can be assigned, or reasons given, to evidence that this special saving grace cannot be totally and finally lost?
The following are the arguments and reasons assigned why the chosen of God cannot totally and finally fall away from grace.
"But Christ's to the end shall endure,
As sure as the earnest is given;
More happy, but not more secure,
The glorified spirits in Heaven."
"His powerful blood did once atone,
And now it pleads before the throne."
"How oft have sin and Satan strove
To rend my soul from Thee, my God,
But everlasting is Thy love,
And Jesus seals it with His blood,
The gospel bears my spirit up;
A faithful and unchanging God
Lays the foundation of my hope,
In oaths, and promises, and blood.
Objections Against the Doctrine of Final Perseverance Answered
Objection 1. To teach that grace cannot be lost will beget looseness in professors.
Objection 2. It is said of some that they made shipwreck of faith (1Ti 1:19), and a falling from grace may be proved from Heb 6:5, etc.
"Not as the world, the Saviour gives:
He is no fickle friend;
Whom once He loves, He never leaves,
But loves him to the end.
Though thousand snares enclose his feet,
Not one shall hold him fast;
Whatever dangers he may meet,
He shall get safe at last.
The spirit that would this truth withstand
Would pull God's temple down,
Wrest Jesus' sceptre from His hand,
And spoil Him of his crown.
Satan might then full victory boast,
The Church might wholly fall;
If one believer may be lost,
It follows, so may all.
But Christ, in every age, has prov'd,
His purchase firm and true;
If this foundation be removed,
What shall the righteous do?"
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