God in election set his love upon those whom he elected. Rom. 9:13. “Jacob have I loved, but Esau have I hated.” Jer. 31:3. “The Lord hath appeared of old unto me, saving, Yea, I have loved thee with an everlasting love; therefore with loving-kindness have I drawn thee.” 1 John 4:19. “We love him because he first loved us.”

A God of infinite goodness and benevolence loves those that have no excellency to move or attract it: the love of men is consequent upon some loveliness in the object, but the love of God is antecedent to, and the cause of it.

Believers were from all eternity beloved both by the Father and the Son. The eternal love of the Father appears in that he from all eternity contrived a way for their salvation, and chose Jesus Christ to be their Redeemer, and laid help upon him. It is a fruit of this electing love that God sent his Son into the world to die, it was to redeem those whom he so loved. 1 John 4:10. “Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins.” It is a fruit of the eternal, electing love of Jesus Christ, that he was willing to come into the world, and die for sinners, and that he actually came and died.

Gal. 2:20. “I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless, I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh, I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.” And so conversion, and glorification, and all that is done for a believer from the first to the last, is a fruit of electing love.

—Jonathan Edwards


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