Jul 21, 2010

Genesis 6:3 - William Styles

Gen. 6:3: “My Spirit shall not always strive with man,” often cited to prove that the Spirit, for a limited time, endeavours to induce all men to become religious. This, however, is not the meaning of the text: for (1), The context refers to the impending destruction of the world by the Flood, and not to the salvation of sinners. (2) Its obvious interpretation is, that one hundred and twenty years should elapse between the first intimation of God’s purpose to destroy the world, and the occurrence of the Deluge. (3) The operations of the Spirit in the hearts of sinners are never in the Scriptures designated “strivings,” nor would the term be accurate. His saving dealings are not with men but in men—and He does not struggle with opposing life, but comes to quicken where death reigns. (4) The verse is an allusion to Noah, who as a preacher of righteousness,” not of salvation, was inspired by the Spirit, and who through him, strove with the antediluvians. The neglect of these warnings necessitated the fearful judgment to which the chapter refers.

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