John Bunyan

"Yea, a little after you tell us, that ‘The doctrine of his sending the Holy Ghost, was to move and excite us to our duty, and to assist, cheer, and comfort us in the performance of it.’ Still meaning our close adhering, by the purity of our human nature, to the dictates of the law, as written in our hearts as men. Which is as false as God is true. For the Holy Ghost is sent into our hearts, not to excite us to a compliance with our old and wind-shaken excellencies, that came into the world with us; but to write new laws in our hearts; even the law of faith, the word of faith and of grace, and the doctrine of remission of sins, through the blood of the Lamb of God, that holiness might flow from thence." *"...a man in or with a legal spirit should not, nay, cannot, do any conditional command of the Gospel acceptably, as to his eternal state, because he doth it in an old-covenant spirit. “No man putteth new wine into old bottles”; but new wine must have new bottles, a Gospel command must have a Gospel spirit, or else the wine will break the bottles, or the principle will break the command. -John Bunyan

John Gill

"The whole of Divine Revelation is to be believed, which God has made by His Prophets, whether of the Old or of the New Testament; and which is all comprehended in these words our Lord began His ministry with, ‘Believe the Gospel.’ Not to believe this, is the damning sin of unbelief, same as spoken of in the New Testament: this was the sin of the Jews, and in which the greater part died, that they believed not that Jesus was the Messiah, and other important truths concerning Him, though they came with such full evidence; this is the sin of all to whom the external revelation of the Gospel comes, and they believe it not; this is the sin of the Deists of the present age, of all deniers, rejecters, and despisers of the Gospel; who either neglect to examine the evidence of it, or, notwithstanding the evidence of it, reject and contemn it. This sort of unbelief, and not want of special faith in Christ, is the cause of men's damnation. No man will be lost or damned because he has not this faith; to say that God will damn any man because he has not this special faith in Christ, is to represent Him as the most cruel of all beings, as the Arminians say we make Him to be; to damn a man for that which is solely in His own power to give; for no man can believe in Christ with this sort of faith, unless it be given him of His Father; and which yet he determines not to give unto him, as unto all the non-elect; and which man never had in his power to have or exercise, no, not in the state of innocence. Can any man believe that God will ever damn a man on such an account as this? This is just such good sense as if it should be said, that a malefactor dies in Tyburn for want of receiving the king's pardon he did not think fit to give him; it is true, if the king had given him his pardon, and he had received it, it would have saved him from dying; but then it is not the want of the king's pardon, or of his receiving it, that is the cause of his condemnation and death, but the crimes he was charged with and convicted of in open court. So, if it please God to give men special faith in Christ, for the remission of their sins, they will certainly be saved; but then it is not the want of this faith in the blood of Christ, for the pardon of sins, that is the cause of any man's condemnation and death, but the transgressions of the Law of God, and the contempt of His Gospel they have been guilty of." "...ministers, in exhorting men to believe in Christ, do not, and cannot consider them as elect or non elect, but as sinners, standing in need of Christ, and salvation by him; and that either as sensible, or as insensible of their state and condition; not as insensible of it; for I do not find that any such are exhorted to believe in Christ for salvation; but as sensible of it, as the jailer was, who trembling said, Sirs, what must I do to be saved? When the apostle exhorted him, saying, Believe in the lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved (Acts 16:30, 31)." -John Gill

William Huntington

*"...such doctrine [duty-faith] had no good effect, either upon the saint, or upon the sinner: not to the saint, for he was sent to Moses for help; nor to the sinner, for he was sent to the physician before he was sick. Nor will God ever attend with his blessing and his seal such a doctrine as this to the conversion of any soul living." *"There is a great difference between law and gospel, works and grace, the letter and the Spirit; and between a legal commandment and a life-giving commandment. The former bids us work for life, the latter bids us live: "When thou wast in thy blood, I said unto thee, live." At which command the sting of death flies, and life and immortality are brought to light." *""...we are to contend for the faith, to be valiant for the truth, to stop the mouths of the gainsayers, to shun profane and vain babblings, and to put to silence the ignorance of foolish men. We are not to be silent under every person who is called a pastor, when he is running away with the key of knowledge, shutting up the kingdom of God against us, sending the ark to the Philistines, and bringing Israel into Egypt." -William Huntington

Robert Hawker

"...They make offers of CHRIST to such, in direct contradiction to Scripture: and, instead of inviting, as JESUS did, the weary and heavy laden only; and as his servants were commanded to do, the thirsty; they invite all. Reader! I beseech you for a moment to consider this subject, and, if the LORD be your teacher, you will soon discover the fallacy of it; and learn, that such men are guided by the pride and vanity of their own heart, (as if they possessed the power of persuasion,) and are not taught of GOD... Invitations to come to CHRIST, And exhortations to follow CHRIST, are addressed only to the Church. Paul's exhortation in this place begins, finally brethren. And all his Epistles, are to the faithful in CHRIST JESUS, and the called to be saints... Cast out the bond-woman and her son, is the language of the HOLY GHOST: for the son of the bond-woman shall not be heir with the son of the freewoman. 2 Corinthians 1:29. 1 Corinthians 3:21-23. Galatians 4:22. to the end. Upon what grounds can men make offers of CHRIST to the world at large, in the face of these scriptures? It is like holding money to the view of a prisoner looking through his iron window on those passing by; but holding it out beyond all possibility of his reaching it... I expect that great opposition will be made to this statement, if it so happens, that my Poor Man's Commentary should fall under the eye of any of the Pharisaical characters I have been alluding to. But these things affect me, not. Those evidences I have brought, are sound, and scriptural. To show such men, that the powers of persuasion they think they possess, are more sound without meaning, as to do by them, as by the idols of Micah: taking away their gods, and what have they more? Judges 18:24... If men would, or could, read their Bibles under GOD the SPIRIT'S teaching, they would soon discover, the mighty difference, between preaching the Gospel, and inviting men to CHRIST, or making offers of CHRIST, whom GOD invites not, and to whom no offers are made. Preaching the Gospel, or preaching CHRIST, which is one and the same, is to be done to the mixed multitude, as the Apostles did. Reader! ponder well the subject; for it is highly important. If we would, or could discern, between preaching CHRIST, which, as I said before, if truly ordained by the HOLY GHOST, they are directed to do; and offering CHRIST, which is little short of blasphemy to attempt: they would shudder at the latter, and go forth with the deepest humility, and not fleshly pride, to the former. And yet, so little apprehensive are some of these self-taught men, of the vast difference, in the work; that they not only offer CHRIST without reserve, to all they meet, both in their preachings, and writings; but they urge their hearers, or readers; to an instant accepting, and to lay hold of the present opportunity, lest another should not be afforded them. If the subject was not so truly solemn as it is, one might be tempted to smile, at such ignorance, and presumption. As if their persuasion, and not GOD'S grace, was the cause of acceptance. And as if that grace depended upon the will of man, to improve it, in the moment of man's offer, or it would be lost forever. Oh! what a different statement the LORD the SPIRIT gives, of those, who received CHRIST which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of GOD. John 1:12, 13." Robert Hawker, Commentary from Philippians 4

J.C. Philpot

*"We hail poor souls ready to perish, outcasts in their feelings; for these are the only persons who know what a free grace ministry is; there is always some duty to be done by everybody else; some sneaking, lurking self-righteousness not rooted out." *"That which is the peculiar, the sole privilege of the sheep of Christ; that which our Lord expressly tells us no man can do except he be specially taught and drawn of the Father; that which is the particular act of a living faith, such as is given to none but the elect; that which is intended for, and addressed to the hungry, the thirsty, the weary and heavy-laden, the outcast and ready to perish, is now made to be the duty of all men, an easy and simple act which everybody is bound to do, and which anybody can do if he likes. "Come to Jesus" is spread abroad in tracts by thousands; is printed in all types, sets, and sizes; is thrown down area steps, spread about broad-cast at fairs, horseraces, and executions; and is the standing stock-in-trade of every beardless youth who, on a Sunday afternoon, can get round him a knot of idlers to preach to in the parks." - J.C. Philpot

William Styles

"Among the strict and Particular Baptists there is at present a strange silence on the error of Duty-faith, which strongly contrasts with the opposition it received from our predecessors. John Steven's Help for the true Disciples of Emmanuel was designed to refute it. John Foreman's Duty-Faith fully shows it's unscriptural character. James Wells rarely preached without denouncing it, and his Letters to Theophilus cogently disprove it. William Palmer was writing a series of Tracts which expose its evils, when his death brought them to a sudden termination in 1873... Several living ministers who once denied Duty-faith, now hold and preach it, and thus, "build again that which they destroyed," (Gal 2:18)... It is sometimes urged that-even granting that Duty-faith has no direct support in the Word of God-it is practically harmless, and often appears to be attended with good results in the more rapid conversion of sinners. But, good men, with holy David, should "hate and abhor lying," (Psa 119:163)-and the substitution of falsehoods for the Gospel is surely the worst form of untruthfulness... The late John Andrews Jones, in the Earthen Vessel for September 1863, conclusively shows that the Fullerian system of Duty-Faith "tends to overthrow the distinguishing and glorious doctrines of the Gospel." History substantiates this. The churches which adopted it at the close of the nineteenth centuries never contemplated abandoning the truths of the sovereignty of God in the election, redemption, and effectual calling of saving sinners. In how many of these churches, however, are these truths held to-day? The Down-grade is the natural and inevitable result of the departure from the truth which Andrew Fuller inaugurated." - William Styles (1902)

Duty-faith Expositions

Free Grace Expositions