Augustus Toplady (1740–1778)
- [Augustus Toplady is best known for his hymn, “Rock of Ages.” What is less known is that he was an excellent defender of the Doctrines of Grace (Calvinism). —ed.]
What do you think your song will be when you come to heaven? Blessed be God, that he gave me free-will; and blessed be my own dear self, that I made a good use of it? O no, no! Such a son as that never was heard in heaven yet, nor ever will, while God is God, and heaven is heaven. Look into the Book of Revelation, and there you will find the employ of the blessed, and the strains which they sing. They cast their crowns before the throne, saying, “Thou art worthy, for Thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by Thy blood, out of every kindred and tongue and people and nation” (Rev. 4:10). There is discriminating grace for you! “Thou has redeemed us out of every kindred,” that is, from the rest of mankind. Is not this particular election and limited redemption?
The church below may be liable to err, and if any visible church upon earth pretends to be infallible, the very pretension itself demonstrates that she is not so. But there is a church which I will venture to pronounce infallible. And what church is that? The church of the glorified, who shine as stars at God’s right hand. And, upon the infallible testimony of that infallible church, a testimony recorded in the infallible pages of inspiration, I will venture to assert that not one grain of Arminianism ever attended a saint into heaven. If those of God’s people, who are in the bonds of that iniquity, are not explicitly converted from it while they live and converse among men; yet do they leave it all behind them in Jordan (the river of death) when they go through. They may be compared to Paul, when he went from Jerusalem to Damascus, and the grace of God struck him down: he fell a free-willer; but he rose a free-gracer. So however the rust of self-righteous pride (and a cursed rust it is: may God’s Spirit file it off from all our souls), however that rust may adhere to us at present, yet when we come to stand before the throne, and before the Lamb, it will all be done away, and we shall sing, in one full, everlasting chorus, with elect angels, and elect men, “Not unto us, O Lord, not unto us.”