John 2:23 Commentary - Expository Notes with Practical Observations on the New TestamentObserve here, What influence the sight of our Saviour's miracles had upon many of the common people, They believed in his name, when they saw the miracles which he did; that is, they were convinced by the works which our Saviour wrought that he came from God, and what he said and did was really true, and no imposture. But Jesus did not commit himself unto them, because he knew all men. Our Saviour did not, and would not trust them who yet believed on his name.
Thence note, That a naked assent to the history of the gospel is not sufficient to entitle us to saving faith. We may assent to the truth of all that we find there, and yet be far from the kingdom of God.
Saving faith implies more than the assent of the understanding to the truths of the gospel. We cannot believe or disbelieve what we please, but must needs assent to what is evident to our understanding; so that it is possible for a man to assent to the truth of Christianity and yet remain in a state of of damnation.
If he doth not embrace it as good, as well as assent to it as true; if our faith be not the parent and principle of obedience; if our belief doth not influence our practice; though we pass for believers amongst men, we are no better than unbelievers in the account of Christ.
If we believe Jesus to be the true Messiah, and do not receive him in all his office; if we commit ourselves to his saving mercy, but do not submit ourselves to his ruling power; if we desire him for our Saviour, but disown him for our sovereign; if we expect salvation by him, and do not yield subjection to him; we put a cheat upon ourselves: for he only believes as he should, that lives as he does believe.
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Expository Notes with Practical Observations on the New Testament
William Burkitt (1650 - 1703) was a Church of England clergyman, bible expositor, and devotional writer.
Volume 1: Matthew - John, was published in 1700.
Volume 2: Acts - Revelation was published 1703.