By Brooks Cochran
“For there is no respect of persons with God” (Rom. 2:11); “God is no respecter of persons” (Acts 10:34).
Being impartial is a trait of character to be admired and desired by all. No amount of knowledge and/or ability can substitute for it. However, it is a rare quality.
The verses quoted above speak of the impartiality of God. Since all men are his creation, he must make no difference in them. I would like for us to note some ways in which God shows his impartiality toward men.
1. He has declared all under sin. “For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God” (Rom. 3:23). The sins of some of God’s most faithful servants are not hid: Abraham (Gen. 12:14-20; 20:2-13); Moses (Deut. 32:48-52); David (2 Sam. 11-12); Paul (Acts 26:9-11). They were recorded to warn us that if God did not condone their sins neither will he condone ours (Rom. 15:4; 1 Cor. 10:11-13).
2. God has provided a common Savior and gospel for all. Jesus is not the Savior of a particular race, class, or nation of people. He died for all (John 3:16). His gospel is universal. It is for all the world (Matt. 28:18-20; Mark 16:15-16; Rom. 1:16; Col. 1:23; Jude 3). In fact, it is the only way by which men can be saved (Acts 4:12).
3. God extends the same invitation to all men. He wants all men to come to his Son. He is not willing that any man be lost; but that all should come to repentance and be saved. No one who responds will be rejected (Matt. 11:28; Titus 2:11; 2 Pet. 3:9; Rev. 22:17).
4. God requires the same conditions of pardon be met by all men if they are to be saved. Man may alter and change God’s plan of pardon; but those that obey that perverted plan will not be saved (Gal. 1:6-10). God wants men to believe in him and his word, repent of their sins, confess their faith in Christ, and be baptized for the remission of their sins (Heb.11:6; Mark 16:16; Acts 2:38; 8:37; Rom. 10:10-17; Acts 22:16). If a person will comply with these terms of pardon he will be saved. If not, he will remain lost.
5. God has given one standard to be followed. Men have various standards which they follow in religion (The Koran, Book of Mormon, various church disciplines, manuals, catechisms, etc.). But there is only one which is from God. It is the Bible (2 Tim. 3:16, 17; 2 Pet. 1:3; John 12:48). All others are the writings of men. They are not our standard in religion. They will lead men away from God and to eternal destruction.
6. God has provided one church for all. Often we read or hear the phrase: “Attend the church of your choice.” In one sense, man does not have a choice if he wants to be right with God. For there is only one church (Matt. 16:18; Col. 1:18; Eph, 4:4). It is true that there are hundreds of churches, religious and/or social organizations in existence today. But that does not mean that God approves of such. In fact, quite the contrary, religious division is condemned in the Bible (1 Cor. 1:10-17; John 17:20; Matt. 15:13).
7. God will judge all as individuals and upon their own life. We will not be judged as nations, or a class, or as a congregation, but as individual people accountable to God (Rom. 14:12; 2 Cor. 5:10; Gal. 6:5, 7-9; Rev. 20:12). Lest any think that they are so special that God will over-look some of their sins, let me put this question to you: If God did not “spare his own Son” from the cross, what gives you the idea that he will spare you from hell (Rom. 8:32)?
Let us be thankful that we serve a God who is no re-specter of persons. Men do show respect and are unfair to one another. But God is not that way.
Guardian of Truth XXXIX: No. 19, p. 15
October 5, 1995