“No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him. And I will raise him up on the last day. It is written in the Prophets, ‘And they will be taught by God.’ Everyone who has heard and learned from the Father comes to me…” (John 6:44-45)
No one can come unless they’re drawn.
Jesus said to the crowd, “No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him.”
Youngs Literal Translation says it this way, “no one is able to come unto me, if the Father who sent me may not draw him…” (John 6:44-45 YLT)
For centuries now, Christians have debated the meaning of verses like this one. God’s sovereignty vs. our free will. Calvinism vs. Arminianism. John Calvin’s theology vs. Jacobus Arminius’s theology. And then there’s a huge number of Christians who hold views that are mixtures of the two. I’m not going to attempt to resolve a debate that began almost five hundred years ago and continues today.
But I will speak to anyone who reads this verse and worries that they may be a person who hasn’t been drawn to Jesus by God the Father.
Am I Drawn? Am I Saved?
After stating that those drawn by the Father are the ones who come to him, Jesus went on to say: “And I will raise him up on the last day. It is written in the Prophets, ‘And they will all be taught by God.’ Everyone who has heard and learned from the Father comes to me…”
So here’s the thing, this prophecy, “And they will all be taught by God” is happening in that moment because Jesus, who is God Incarnate, is teaching them. But they’re not hearing it. And only those who hear and learn from the Father come to Jesus. So if you’re concerned about whether or not you’re one of those drawn by the Father, rest in this, you’re concerned: and that means something. That means you have an inclination toward Jesus. And if you have even the tiniest inclination to come to Jesus, then you’re drawn toward him.
Jesus said, “Everyone who has heard and learned from the Father comes to me…” You’ve done that. You’ve heard and learned from the Father if you’ve been moved at all by His gospel accounts of Jesus’ life and words. So come to Christ. Pray right now. Just tell Him you’re giving yourself to Jesus. Then continue to “hear and learn” by reading the Bible, and by attending a church where the people love Jesus so much they live to do his will, and by praying every day.
Don’t resist the Holy Spirit. Come. In this same chapter, just a few verses earlier Jesus said, “…whoever comes to me I will never cast out.” So come to Jesus, right now. (John 6:37)
If you do he will never leave you or forsake you.
He’ll never cast you out.
(If you gave yourself to Jesus, or if you have questions or comments, please send me an email at email@example.com.)
References and Resources:
Calvanism vs. Arminianism – which view is correct? GotQuestions.org
Image from Wikimedia Commons
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Indeed, when we come to Him, trust Him, and obey Him, He will in no wise cast us out of His Presence. But this I do know; when we die, our bodies go to the grave which in Hebrew is sheoul or hell H7585. Everyone who dies goes to “hell”, for as we’ve just seen hell is the grave. However, our spirit goes back to God who gave it to us. If we are His, then he will connect our spirit in the future when he raises our bones from hell and puts flesh on them.
Ecc 3:21 Who knoweth the spirit of the sons of man that is going up on high, and the spirit of the beast that is going down below to the earth?
As to heaven, no one is in heaven but God and His angels, and the spirits of the departed. When Messiah raises us from our graves we will be changed and then go with Him into His Kingdom of which He will rule and reign on His throne in Jerusalem as the son of David. If we are His children, when He returns, He will “save” us from this world and death will be swallowed up in victory! To be victorious we need to honor and obey His words, or as you say “live to do His will”:
Mat 22:36 `Teacher, which is the great command in the Law?’
Mat 22:37 And Jesus said to him, `Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thine understanding–
Mat 22:38 this is a first and great command;
Mat 22:39 and the second is like to it, Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself;
Mat 22:40 on these–the two commands–all the law and the prophets do hang.’