Faith, Election and the Believer’s Assurance by George Gifford (1547-1620)
George Gifford is one of those puritan preachers that most are not familiar with, but ought to be. He is a storehouse of biblical sweetness, and draws out the truths surrounding the Lord Jesus Christ in his work and merit of salvation to the praise of God’s glorious grace … – McMahon
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George Gifford (1547-1620) was a most excellent puritan divine described as a fiery Gospel preacher, learned and able, being a great enemy to popery.
In this Scriptural exhortation and teaching on 2 Peter 1:1-11, Gifford explains election by first attaching the importance of real faith and fruitful works to the life of the Christian. There is no greater question asked among those doubtful of their salvation than how to gain real assurance.
Gifford biblically demonstrates the importance of a fruitful life of virtue in the first three chapters. Then, he describes how those primary principles of true biblical faith are set in the context of election. This in turn provides the Christian with a mountain of assurance. But, how will they now know that “such an entrance shall be ministered unto” them in the Kingdom of heaven? They know it through the truth of the word, as it pertains to the work and merit of Christ, and subsequently, through the visible and sure fruits of righteousness that the Spirit works in them throughout their whole life. The work of Christ applied to the soul of a true believer will exemplify the fruits of righteousness by the Spirit. They will be discernably seen in their life, and this in turn will become the Spirit’s motion of assurance in them.
In following the Apostle Peter’s outline in his epistle, Gifford methodically shows the need for holiness, and how the true believer, who is fruitful, can and should then set his heart, soul and mind on the electing power of God in Christ for assurance. For God has not only “called believers” to be elected, but, he “hath called us unto glory and virtue.” If there is no virtue, there will be no glory. All this ties into Gifford’s systematic elucidation of these most precious and important biblical truths of faith, election and assurance.
This work is not a scan or facsimile, has been carefully transcribed by hand being made easy to read in modern English, and has an active table of contents for electronic versions.
Table of Contents
A Summary of Eternal Election by C. Matthew McMahon
Meet George Gifford Edited by C. Matthew McMahon
To the Godly Reader
The First Sermon
The Second Sermon
The Third Sermon
The Fourth Sermon