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Mar 11, 2018
Passage: Psalm 115:3

Our God Is In The Heavens

…our God is in the heavens: he hath done whatsoever he hath pleased

(PSALM 115:3)

I dare say that, in such an [auditorium] as this, a number of Arminians [free-willers] are present. I fear that all our public assemblies have too many of them. Perhaps, however, even these people, idolaters as they are, may be apt to blame, and indeed with justice, the absurdity of those who worship idols of silver and gold, the work of men’s hands. But let me ask, if it be so very absurd to worship the work of other men’s hands, what must it be to worship the works of our own hands? Perhaps, you may say, “God forbid that we should do so.” Nevertheless, let me tell you that trust, confidence, reliance, and dependence for salvation, are all acts, and very solemn ones too, of divine worship; and upon whatsoever you depend, whether in whole or in part, for your acceptance with God, and for your justification in His sight, whatsoever you rely upon, and trust in, for the attainment of grace or glory; if it be anything short of God in Christ, you are an idolater to all intents and purposes.

Very different is the idea which Scripture gives us of the ever blessed God, from that of those false gods worshipped by the heathens; and from that degrading representation of the true God which Arminianism would palm upon mankind. “Our God,” says this Psalm, verse 3, “is in the heavens; He hath done whatsoever He hath pleased.” This is not the Arminian idea of God; for our free-willers and our chance-mongers tell us that God does not do whatsoever He pleases; and that there are a great number of things which God wishes to do, and tugs and strives to do, but yet cannot bring them to pass. They tell us, as one ingeniously expresses it,

“That all mankind he fain would save,

But longs for what he cannot have;

Industrious thus to sound abroad

A disappointed, changing God.”
[Excerpt of a poem by John Gill, to characterize and expose the Arminian heresy of John Wesley’s “hurtful tares”]

How does this comport with that majestic description, “Our God is in the heavens!” He sits upon the throne weighing out and dispensing the fates of men, holding all events in his own hand; and guiding every link of every chain of second causes, from the beginning to the end of time. Our God is in the heavens, possessed of all power; and, which is the natural consequence of that, “He hath done whatsoever He hath pleased,” for as the apostle expresses it,—the words are different, but the sense is the same,—“He worketh all things after the counsel of His own will.”

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