“Neither Better Nor More Deserving”—The Canons of Dordt, 1618

While preparing to teach from John 17 I once again came across this statement from the Canons of Dordt on election. It is a glorious reminder to us all that we Christians are “neither better nor more deserving than the others” and that our salvation is “by sheer grace, according to the free good pleasure of His will.” (If it does nothing else, the following quote should provide us with a good dose of humility.)

Before the foundation of the world, by sheer grace, according to the free good pleasure of his will, he chose in Christ to salvation a definite number of particular people out of the entire human race, which had fallen by its own fault from its original innocence into sin and ruin. Those chosen were neither better nor more deserving than the others, but lay with them in the common misery. He did this in Christ, whom he also appointed from eternity to be the mediator, the head of all those chosen, and the foundation of their salvation. And so he decided to give the chosen ones to Christ to be saved, and to call and draw them effectively into Christ’s fellowship through his Word and Spirit. In other words, he decided to grant them true faith in Christ, to justify them, to sanctify them, and finally, after powerfully preserving them in the fellowship of his Son, to glorify them.

The full text of the Canons of Dordt can be found at the CRTA website.

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