“God alone opens the heart” by Richard Sibbes

“As our hearts are shut and closed up naturally, so God, and God alone, opens the heart, by His Spirit in the use of the means. God opened Lydia’s heart.

God hath many keys. He hath the key of heaven to command the rain to come down. He hath the key of the womb; the key of hell and the grave; and the key of the heart especially. ‘He opens, and no man shuts; and shuts and no man opens,’ Rev. 3:7.

He hath the key of the heart to open the understanding, the memory, the will, and affections. God, and God only, hath the key of the heart to open that. It is His prerogative.

He made the heart, and He only hath to do with the heart. He can unmake it, and make it new again, as those that make locks can do. And if the heart be in ill temper, He can take it in pieces, and bring it to nothing as it were, as it must be before conversion.

And He can make it a new heart again. It is God that opens the heart, and God only. All the angels in heaven cannot give one grace, not the least grace. Grace comes altogether from God. It is altogether from God.

All the creatures in the world cannot open the heart, but God only by His Holy Spirit. For nature cannot do above its sphere, as we say, above its own power. Natural things can do but natural things.

For nature to raise itself up to believe heavenly things, it cannot be. Therefore as you see vapours go as high as the sun draws them up, and no higher, so the soul of man is lift up to heavenly things by the power of God’s Spirit.

God draws us and then we follow. God, I say, only openeth the heart.”

–Richard Sibbes, “Lydia’s Conversion,” in The Complete Works of Richard Sibbes, Volume 6, ed. Alexander Balloch Grosart (Edinburgh; London; Dublin: James Nichol; James Nisbet and Co.; W. Robertson, 1863), 524.

Leave a comment

Filed under Christian Theology, grace, Jesus Christ, Puritanical, Quotable Quotes, Regeneration, Richard Sibbes, salvation, Sovereignty, The Gospel

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s