James Fergusson on the Sincere Free Offer of the Gospel



Commentary on the Epistles of Paul, (The Banner of Truth Trust, Edinburgh, 1978)

p. 462f, as quoted by David Silversides, The Free Offer: Biblical and Reformed,  Buy  Marpet Press, 2005, p. 103-4 

On 2 Thess. 1:8 

Men, by living in their ignorance of God and disobedience to the gospel, do not only wrong themselves and are indeed greatest enemies to their own mercies, but do also injure the Lord, and what in them lies do put an affront upon Him, as if the knowledge of God were not worth the pains, and as if Christ had put Himself to unnecessary travail for purchasing life and salvation to sinners, the offer whereof they refused to accept and embrace.  For while he says, “the Lord Christ will take vengeance on them that know not God, and obey not the gospel,” [2 Thess. 1:8] it is implied that there is a wrong and injury offered to God in their ignorance and disobedience, for which He will avenge Himself upon them… yet if he do not obey the gospel, and, more especially, the great command of the gospel to believe and accept an offered Savior, 1 John 3:23, he cannot be saved.”


On Eph. 1:8, this quote was compiled by Andrew Myers 

“As the same free grace, and nothing else, which moved God to elect us before time, and send his Son to redeem us in time, does make Him also in our effectual calling to work in us those graces, and to give unto us an actual right to all those spiritual blessings which we were chosen unto, and which were purchased for us; so nothing less than abundant and overflowing grace is hereby made manifest in God, considering that there is not only a want [lack] of goodwill [on our part], but also an utter averseness from closing with his gracious offer, Matt 23:37,

[‘O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, thou that killest the prophets, and stonest them which are sent unto thee, how often would I have gathered thy children together, even as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, and ye would not!‘],

and that not only there is nothing in the elect before effectual calling more than in the reprobrate, which might move God to bestow those excellent blessings upon them, but also much to scare him from ever meddling with them, Ezek. 16:3, etc., unless where sin abounded grace did much more abound, Rom. 5:20; for the apostle, speaking of God’s bestowing grace upon the elect Ephesians, does ascribe his so doing to his abounding grace; ‘wherein,’ or, in which grace, (formerly spoken of) ‘he hath abounded towards us.'”


On Eph. 1:10, this quote was complied by Andrew Myers

“Though the benefits purchased by Christ, and particularly that of effectual calling, and gathering together unto God those whom sin did separate from Him, be intended for and accordingly does light on a few, Matt. 7:14; yet the gospel and promise by which Christ and the benefits purchased by Him are revealed, is drawn up in the most comprehensive expressions; and this of purpose, that none may hereby be excluded from laying hold upon that gracious offer, but such as do exclude themselves, John 5:40.”




Related Pages

The Sincere Free Offer of the Gospel

Historic Reformed Quotes on the Sincere Free Offer of the Gospel