Dr. Archibald Alexander of Princeton was a preacher of Christ for sixty years and a professor of divinity for forty. On his deathbed, he said to a friend, “All my theology is reduced to this narrow compass— Jesus Christ came into the world to save sinners.”
The Bible reveals that multitudes will never believe and be saved. They will reject Christ and be lost forever. Yet, there will be a people in whose hearts the gospel will triumph, who will come to personal faith in Christ. Jesus said concerning those He had come to save: “All that the Father giveth me shall come to me, and him that cometh unto me I will in no wise cast out” (John 6:37). What a promise!
The Grand Company of Believers: “All that the Father giveth me…” This describes those who receive the truth of the gospel—a grand company from every age who make up the number of the redeemed (Revelation 7:9). They were given to Christ in the great covenant of grace and redemption (John 6:39). He became responsible for them, living a perfect life, and dying a sacrificial death on their behalf. They were “chosen in Christ” and He became their Surety and Substitute. Furthermore, in time they are given to Christ through the Spirit’s work in regeneration. Those purchased by the Lord Jesus are brought unto Him by grace. In glory they will be presented faultless to God. Christ Himself will say: “Behold I, and the children whom thou hast given me.”
The Great Coming of Believers: Jesus said that they “shall come to me.”
All who were given to Him in eternal election are going to come to Him in time. Here is activity: “Shall come to me.” They will not merely come to a religious creed, to a church, a preacher, or a sacrament, but to Christ Himself! Sinners need to come to Christ. “Only Jesus can do helpless sinners good.” But how do they come to Christ? What does that mean? It is believing on Him, looking to Him alone for salvation (See John 6: 35, 40, 47, 49-51, and 54). “Eating His flesh and drinking His blood” are symbols of saving faith. The Lord explained in verse 35 that those who come to Him “shall never hunger” and those who believe “shall never thirst.”
There is assurance: The use of “shall” and “will” means there’s no doubt here: because of the will of the Father (vs.39-40) the work of Christ in giving His life for them (v.51), and the operation of the Spirit (v.45), these people shall come to Him!
There is also ability: How is it that such sinners do come to Christ? There is an invitation to come (Matthew 11:28). But there’s an inability to come (John 6:44). Yet, there is an inclination to come that is given by God (vs. 44-45, 65). Left to ourselves we would never believe, but in grace, God gives us the desire and will to come to Christ (Psalm 110a).
The Gracious Comfort of Believers: “…and him that cometh unto me I will in no wise [under no circumstances] cast out.” Not one sinner ever truly came to Christ for salvation and was refused. This is a balm for a wounded soul. Here is comfort and glad assurance for all who will trust in Jesus.
It has been said that this text is like a dagger. You must not hold a dagger by the blade. It will wound you. Too many become hung up on the first part of the text, and wonder if they belong to the “all” that were given to the Son. This is to take the text by the blade. The handle we must lay hold upon is the promise: “Him that cometh unto me I will in no wise cast out.” If you come to Christ, that will be the proof that you belong to the company of the elect. How are the elect to be known? “All that the Father giveth me shall come to me.” Have you come to Christ? C.H. Spurgeon commented: “It will not save me to know that Christ is a Saviour; but it will save me to trust Him to be my Saviour…the essence of faith lies in this—a casting oneself on the promise.” If you have not already done so, may God enable you to trust in Christ today!