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Confession17.1. They, whom God hath accepted in His
Beloved, effectually called, and sanctified by His Spirit, can neither
totally, nor finally, fall away from the state of grace: but shall certainly
persevere therein to the end, and be eternally saved.(a)
(a) Phil. 1:6; II Pet. 1:10; John 10:28, 29; I John 3:9; I Pet. 1:5, 9.
Confession17.2. This perseverance of the saints depends
not upon their own free will, but upon the immutability of the decree of
election, flowing from the free and unchangeable love of God the Father;(b)
upon the efficacy of the merit and intercession of Jesus Christ;(c) the
abiding of the Spirit, and of the seed of God within them;(d) and the nature
of the covenant of grace:(e) from all which ariseth also the certainty and
(b) II Tim. 2:18, 19; Jer. 31:3.
(c) Heb. 10:10, 14; Heb. 13:20, 21; Heb. 9:12, 13, 14, 15; Rom. 8:33 to the
end; John 17:11, 24; Luke 22:32; Heb. 7:25.
(d) John 14:16, 17; I John 2:27; I John 3:9.
(e) Jer. 32:40.
(f) John 10:28; II Thess. 3:3; I John 2:19.
Confession17.3. Nevertheless, they may, through the
temptations of Satan and of the world, the prevalency of corruption remaining
in them, and the neglect of the means of their preservation, fall into
grievous sins;(g) and, for a time, continue therein:(h) whereby they incur
God's displeasure,(i) and grieve His Holy Spirit,(k) come to be deprived of
some measure of their graces and comforts,(l) have their hearts hardened,(m)
and their consciences wounded,(n) hurt and scandalize others,(o) and bring
temporal judgments upon themselves.(p)
(g) Matt. 26:70, 72, 74.
(h) Ps. 51 title and ver. 14.
(i) Isa. 64:5, 7, 9; II Sam. 11:27.
(k) Eph. 4:30.
(l) Ps. 51:8, 10, 12; Rev. 2:4; Cant. 5:2, 3, 4, 6.
(m) Isa. 63:17; Mark 6:52; Mark 16:14.
(n) Ps. 32:3, 4; Ps. 51:8.
(o) II Sam. 12:14.
(p) Ps. 89:31, 32; I Cor. 11:32.