27 February, 2017

Arthur W. Pink Quotes


Here is a list of quotes from the writings of Arthur W. Pink (1886 – 1952) that either do not fit with, or out-rightly contradict central tenets of the theory of “common grace” and the “well-meant gospel offer.”

[N.B. These quotes are not intended to imply, however, that Pink never made erroneous statements on this subject or that all his writings were always entirely consistent on these points.

1. Against the Theology behind the Well-Meant Offer/The Free Offer

(a) The concept of the “well-meant offer” (or certain forms of “the free offer of the gospel”) teaches that God’s promise of salvation in the gospel is for absolutely everybody who outwardly hears the external preaching and who hears the outward call to repent and believe. An example of such a universal (conditional) promise would be: God promises every one of you, that if you believe you will be saved.Pink here condemns such an idea, and asserts that the promises of God in the gospel are only for “His people.”

“Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises” (II Pet 1:4).

The Divine promises make known the good pleasure of God’s will to His people, to bestow upon them the riches of His grace. They are the outward testimonies of His heart, who from all eternity loves them and fore-appointed all things for them and concerning them. In the person and work of His Son, God has made an all-sufficient provision for their complete salvation, both for time and for eternity ...

The promises are a most blessed making known and manifesting of God’s love to His people. There are three steps in connection with God’s love: first, His inward purpose to exercise it; the last, the real execution of that purpose; but in between there is the gracious making known of that purpose to the beneficiaries not only to show His love fully to them in due time, but in the interim He will have us informed of His benevolent designs, that we may sweetly rest in His love, and stretch ourselves comfortably upon His sure promises ...

How terrible, then, is the blindness and how great is the sin of those preachers who indiscriminately apply the Divine promises to the saved and unsaved alike! They are not only taking “the children’s bread” and casting it to the “dogs,” but they are “handling the word of God deceitfully” (2 Cor. 4:2), and beguiling immortal souls. And they who listen to and heed them are little less guilty, for God holds all responsible to search the Scriptures for themselves, and test whatever they read or hear by that unerring standard. If they are too lazy to do so, and prefer blindly to follow their blind guides, then their blood is on their own heads. Truth has to be “bought” (Prov. 23:23), and those who are unwilling to pay the price must go without it.

(Source: Profiting From The Word: The Scriptures And The Promises, pp 91-93; emphasis added.)


(b) The gospel is popularly thought to be an “offer” and an “invitation” to all men on the part of God. Pink rejects this idea in the following:

Concerning the character and contents of the Gospel the utmost confusion prevails today. The Gospel is not an “offer” to be bandied around by evangelistic peddlers. The Gospel is no mere invitation, but a proclamation, a proclamation concerning Christ; true, whether men believe it or no. No man is asked to believe that Christ died for him in particular. The Gospel, in brief, is this: Christ died for sinners, you are a sinner, believe in Christ, and you shall be saved. In the Gospel, God simply announces the terms upon which men may be saved (namely, repentance and faith) and, indiscriminately, all are commanded to fulfill them.

(Source: The Sovereignty of God [Grand Rapids, MI: Baker, 2008], p. 209; emphasis added).


(c) The theory of the well-meant offer (or “the free offer of the gospel” [esp. that of John Murray]) proposes a desire of God for the salvation of all men. Pink implicitly rejects such an idea when he comments on one the favourite texts of free-offer theologians, I Tim. 2:4:

I Tim. 2:4 cannot teach that God wills the salvation of all mankind, or, otherwise all mankind would be saved—“What His soul desireth even that He doeth” (Job 23:13)!

(Source: The Sovereignty of God [Grand Rapids, MI: Baker, 2008], p. 104; emphasis Pink’s).

2. Against the idea of a “General/Universal Love of God”

(a) In Mark 10:21, it states that Jesus “loved” the rich young ruler (“Then Jesus beholding him loved him, and said unto him, One thing thou lackest: go thy way, sell whatsoever thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou”). In much literature promoting common grace this is one of the popular texts alluded to as supporting a “general” (common) love of Christ (and of God) for all sinners, including those that perish. Pink rejects such an interpretation, and claims that this rich young ruler was one of the elect:

Concerning the rich young ruler of whom it is said Christ ‘loved him’ (Mark 10:21), we fully believe that he was one of God’s elect, and was saved sometime after his interview with our Lord.

(Source: The Sovereignty of God [Grand Rapids, MI: Baker, 2008], p. 201).


(b) The theory of common grace speaks of a general love of God for all men (including those that perish and end up in hell). Pink, in the following, had nothing to do with this notion:

One of the most popular beliefs of the day is that God loves everybody, and the very fact that it is so popular with all classes ought to be enough to arouse the suspicions of those who are subject to the Word of Truth. God’s Love toward all His creatures is the fundamental and favourite tenet of Universalists, Unitarians, Theosophists, Christian Scientists, Spiritualists, Russelites [Jehovah’s Witnesses], etc. No matter how a man may live
—in open defiance of Heaven, with no concern whatever for his soul’s eternal interests, still less for God’s glory, dying, perhaps with an oath on his lips,—notwithstanding, God loves him, we are told. So widely has this dogma been proclaimed, and so comforting is it to the heart which is at enmity with God, we have little hope of convincing many of their error … It has been customary to say God loves the sinner, though He hates his sin.1 But that is a meaningless distinction. What is there in a sinner but sin? Is it not true that his “whole head is sick,” and his “whole heart faint,” and that “from the sole of the foot even unto the head there is no soundness” in him? (Isa. 1:5, 6). Is it true that God loves the one who is despising and rejecting His blessed Son? God is Light as well as Love, and therefore His love must be a holy love. To tell the Christ-rejector that God loves him is to cauterise his conscience, as well as to afford him a sense of security in his sins. The fact is, that the love of God, is a truth for the saints only, and to present it to the enemies of God is to take the children’s bread and cast it to the dogs.


1. Rom. 5:8 is addressed to saints, and the “we” are the same ones as those spoken of in 8:29-30.

(Source: The Sovereignty of God [Grand Rapids, MI: Baker, 2008], p. 200).

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