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Episode 46 — Westminster Confession of Faith, Chapter 3: Of God’s Eternal Decree, Section 1

Series: Westminster Confession of Faith

This week Randy Johovich, Don Maurer, and Marlin Klingensmith begin a discussion of chapter 3 of the Westminster Confession of Faith. They discuss section 1 of the chapter: Of God’s Eternal Decree. This section deals with how God ordains everything that comes to pass.

Running time: 47:17

Click here for 43: Westminster Confession of Faith, Chapter 3: Of God’s Eternal Decree, Section 1

Program notes: The following are quoted in this discussion.

Isaiah 46:8-11

8 “Remember this and stand firm,

recall it to mind, you transgressors,

9 remember the former things of old;

for I am God, and there is no other;

I am God, and there is none like me,

10 declaring the end from the beginning

and from ancient times things not yet done,

saying, ‘My counsel shall stand,

and I will accomplish all my purpose,’

11 calling a bird of prey from the east,

the man of my counsel from a far country.

I have spoken, and I will bring it to pass;

I have purposed, and I will do it.”

Westminster Confession of Faith

Chapter 3: Of God’s Eternal Decree, Section 1

God from all eternity, did, by the most wise and holy counsel of His own will, freely, and unchangeably ordain whatsoever comes to pass; yet so, as thereby neither is God the author of sin, nor is violence offered to the will of the creatures; nor is the liberty or contingency of second causes taken away, but rather established.

Ephesians 1:11

In him we have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to the purpose of him who works all things according to the counsel of his will….

Deuteronomy 29:29

The secret things belong to the LORD our God, but the things that are revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may do all the words of this law.

Genesis 50:20

As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good, to bring it about that many people should be kept alive, as they are today.

Luke 13:1-5

1 There were some present at that very time who told him about the Galileans whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices. 2 And he answered them, “Do you think that these Galileans were worse sinners than all the other Galileans, because they suffered in this way? 3 No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish. 4 Or those eighteen on whom the tower in Siloam fell and killed them: do you think that they were worse offenders than all the others who lived in Jerusalem? 5 No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish.”

Genesis 18:21

I will go down to see whether they have done altogether according to the outcry that has come to me. And if not, I will know.

Genesis 22:12

He said, “Do not lay your hand on the boy or do anything to him, for now I know that you fear God, seeing you have not withheld your son, your only son, from me.”

Proverbs 16:4

The LORD has made everything for its purpose, even the wicked for the day of trouble.

Acts 2:22-23

22 “Men of Israel, hear these words: Jesus of Nazareth, a man attested to you by God with mighty works and wonders and signs that God did through him in your midst, as you yourselves know 23 this Jesus, delivered up according to the definite plan and foreknowledge of God, you crucified and killed by the hands of lawless men.”

Isaiah 53:10

Yet it was the will of the LORD to crush him;
he has put him to grief;

Isaiah 45:7

I form light and create darkness,
I make well-being and create calamity,
I am the LORD, who does all these things.

Amos 3:6

Is a trumpet blown in a city,
and the people are not afraid?
Does disaster come to a city,
unless the LORD has done it?

Romans 9:19-20

19 You will say to me then, “Why does he still find fault? For who can resist his will?” 20 But who are you, O man, to answer back to God? Will what is molded say to its molder, “Why have you made me like this?”

Matthew 26:24

The Son of Man goes as it is written of him, but woe to that man by whom the Son of Man is betrayed! It would have been better for that man if he had not been born.

Philippians 2:13-14

12Therefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, so now, not only as in my presence but much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling, 13 for it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure.

James 1:13

Let no one say when he is tempted, “I am being tempted by God,” for God cannot be tempted with evil, and he himself tempts no one.

John 1:5

This is the message we have heard from him and proclaim to you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all.

Heidelberg Catechism

Answer to Question 26:

The eternal Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,

who out of nothing created heaven and earth

and everything in them,

who still upholds and rules them

by his eternal counsel and providence,

is my God and Father

because of Christ his Son.

I trust him so much that I do not doubt

he will provide

whatever I need

for body and soul,

and he will turn to my good

whatever adversity he sends me

in this sad world.

He is able to do this because he is almighty God;

he desires to do this because he is a faithful Father.

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