Can You Worship Over The Terrible Doctrine of Reprobation?

Posted: February 18, 2014 in Uncategorized

This week in our Greek exegesis course, where we cover Romans 9-11 in one semester, we spent an hour or so talking about the issue of double predestination. Andy Naselli, our NT professor, did a fantastic job of surveying the issue and articulating his understanding of reprobation from Romans 9. Without diving into the particulars, we concluded in class that God does exercise his divine freedom in showing mercy and hardening whomever he desires. That is, he elects some to salvation while he elects others to pass over and leave in their sin based solely on his divine prerogative.

While this is a tough doctrine, and highly debated, it seems to be the position that Paul sets forth in Romans 9. But can such a doctrine lead the heart to sing the praises of God? John Piper has shown that it can, does, and should. Below is a hymn he wrote in 2003 while preaching on the hardening of Pharaoh’s heart. The hymn is set to the tune of O’ For a Thousand Tongues and we concluded our time in class by singing it together this past Monday.

Based on Romans 9:14-18
To the tune of “O for a Thousand Tongues!”
Words by John Piper

Is there injustice with our God
When he decrees our ways?
No! This is but his righteousness
And root of all our praise.

Does he make mercy hang on this:
If we can will or run?
No! He has mercy on his own:
Before the world, it’s done!

Did Pharaoh rise and make his name
Renown, and flaunt his mind?
No! He displayed his Maker’s fame,
And did what was designed.

O that we had a mind to grasp
The depths and riches of
The wisdom of the ways of God
And mysteries of love!

Now let no sin cause you to flee
Or make you suffer loss,
Our God is free, and Christ has died
Rejoice before his cross!

© John Piper

The song can be found at the Desiring God blog here.

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