05 November, 2019

II Chronicles 36:14-16—“[The Lord] sent to them by his messengers … because he had compassion on his people”

Moreover all the chief of the priests, and the people, transgressed very much after all the abominations of the heathen; and polluted the house of the LORD which he had hallowed in Jerusalem.  And the LORD God of their fathers sent to them by his messengers, rising up betimes, and sending; because he had compassion on his people, and on his dwelling place:  But they mocked the messengers of God, and despised his words, and misused his prophets, until the wrath of the LORD arose against his people, till there was no remedy” (II Chron. 36:14-16).

“II Chronicles 36 explains why God sent the Babylonians to destroy Jerusalem and take Judah captive.  The people, continuing to harden their hearts against God without repentance, are reprobates, as the passage concludes that there is no remedy for them.  Yet God had compassion on them and demonstrated this by sending them preachers so that they might turn.  It was only after their abuse of His compassionate gestures that His wrath arose against the reprobates till He ultimately destroyed them.”


The one making this argument says nothing about the purposes of God toward the elect in Judah, while the passage indicates it is speaking of God’s purposes towards his elect: “… until the wrath of the LORD arose against his people, till there was no remedy.”  “His people” are not reprobates. They are elect.

The passage teaches that even some elect are so given over to sin for a period of time that they will not heed the warnings of the gospel, so that the Lord must chastise them in some grievous way. “There was no remedy” does not mean that the Lord then could not turn them; it underscores that the way of turning involved sending them out of the promised land, sending the Babylonians against them. The verses your correspondent quotes give the reason for the captivity.

In sum, the text fits with a proper view of God’s purpose in the preaching of the gospel to all, to both elect and reprobate. To the elect, to save—and if they will not be turned by the preaching, their salvation necessitates grievous chastisement; and to the reprobate, to harden. (DK, 04/11/2019)



More to come! (DV)

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