God has indeed lent to every man the power to lock his heart and stalk away darkly into his self-chosen night, as He has lent to every man the ability to respond to His overtures of grace, but while the “no” choice may be ours, the “yes” choice is always God’s. He is the Author of our faith as He must be its Finisher. Only by grace can we continue to believe; we can persist in willing God’s will only as we are seized upon by a benign power that will overcome our natural bent to unbelief.
So keenly do we men enjoy dominion that we like to think that we hold in our own hands the power of life and death. We love to think that hell will be easier to bear from the fact of our having gone there in defiance of some power that sought to rule us. He knew this well who put into the mouth of Satan that speech of proud defiance:
What though the field be lost?
All is not lost; the unconquerable will,
The study of revenge, immortal hate,
And courage never to submit or yield,
And what is else not to be overcome;
That glory never shall his wrath or might
Extort from us.
Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Hebrews 12:2
So keenly do we men enjoy dominion that we like to think that we hold in our own hands the power of life and death.
Help us, Father, to bow our wills toward Your’s, to surrender totally all of our self to Your control.