Come and Welcome
Written By J O H N.B U N Y A N,
Author of "THE PILGRIM'S PROGRESS."
"And they shall come which were ready to perish." –Isaiah 27:13.
L O N D O N,
Published seven years before John Bunyan's death.
[THE PERSON GIVING, THE FATHER.]
ll that the Father giveth." By this word "Father," Christ describeth the person giving; by which we may learn several useful things.
First, That the Lord God, and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, is concerned with the Son in the salvation of his people. True, his acts, as to our salvation, are diverse from those of the Son; he was not capable of doing that, or those things for us, as did the Son; he died not, he spilt not blood for our redemption, as the Son; but yet he hath a hand, a great hand, in our salvation too. As Christ saith, "The Father himself loveth you," and his love is manifest in choosing of us, in giving of us to his Son; yea, and in giving his Son also to be a ransom for us. Hence he is called, "The Father of mercies, and the God of all comfort." For here even the Father hath himself found out, and made way for his grace to come to us through the sides and the heart-blood of his well-beloved Son (Col 1:12-14). The Father, therefore, is to be remembered and adored, as one having a chief hand in the salvation of sinners. We ought to give "thanks unto the Father, which hath made us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light" (Col 1:12). For "the Father sent the Son to be the Saviour of the world" (John 4:14). As also we see in the text, the "Father giveth" the sinner to Christ to save him.
Second, Christ Jesus the Lord, by this word "Father," would familiarize this giver to us. Naturally the name of God is dreadful to us, especially when he is discovered to us by those names that declare his justice, holiness, power, and glory; but now this word "Father" is a familiar word, it frighteth not the sinner, but rather inclineth his heart to love, and be pleased with the remembrance of him. Hence Christ also, when he would have us to pray with godly boldness, puts this word "Father" into our mouths; saying, "When ye pray, say, Our Father which art in heaven;" concluding thereby, that by the familiarity that by such a word is intimated, the children of God may take more boldness to pray for, and ask great things. I myself have often found, that when I can say but this word Father, it doth me more good than when I call him by any other Scripture name. It is worth your noting, that to call God by his relative title was rare among the saints in Old Testament times. Seldom do you find him called by this name; no, sometimes not in three or four books: but now in New Testament times, he is called by no name so often as this, both by the Lord Jesus himself, and by the apostles afterwards. Indeed, the Lord Jesus was he that first made this name common among the saints, and that taught them, both in their discourses, their prayers, and in their writings, so much to use it; it being more pleasing to, and discovering more plainly our interest in, God, than any other expression; for by this one name we are made to understand that all our mercies are the offspring of God, and that we also that are called are his children by adoption.
[Import of the word GIVETH.] —"All that the Father giveth."
This word "giveth" is out of Christ's ordinary dialect, and seemeth to intimate, at the first sound, as if the Father's gift to the Son was not an act that is past, but one that is present and continuing; when, indeed, this gift was bestowed upon Christ when the covenant, the eternal covenant, was made between them before all worlds. Wherefore, in those other places, when this gift is mentioned, it is still spoken of, as of an act that is past; as, "All that he hath give me; to as many as thou hast given me; thou gavest them me; and those which thou hast given me." Therefore, of necessity, this must be the first and chief sense of the text; I mean of this word "giveth," otherwise the doctrine of election, and of the eternal covenant which was made between the Father and the Son, in which covenant this gift of the Father is most certainly comprised, will be shaken, or at leastwise questionable, by erroneous and wicked men: for they may say, That the Father gave not all those to Christ that shall be saved, before the world was made; for that this act of giving is an act of continuation.  But again, this word "giveth" is not to be rejected, for it hath its proper use, and may signify to us —
1. That though the act of giving among men doth admit of the time past, or the time to come, and is to be spoken of with reference to such time; yet with God it is not so. Things past, or things to come, are always present with God, and with his Son Jesus Christ: He "calleth those things which be not," that is, to us, "as though they were" (Rom 4:17). And again, "Known unto God are all his works from the beginning of the world." All things to God are present, and so the gift of the Father to the Son, although to us, as is manifest by the word, it is an act that is past (Acts 15:16).
2. Christ may express himself thus, to show, that the Father hath not only given him this portion in the lump, before the world was, but that those that he had so given, he will give him again; that is, will bring them to him at the time of their conversion; for the Father bringeth them to Christ (John 6:44). As it is said, "She shall be brought unto the king in raiment of needle-work;" that is, in the righteousness of Christ; for it is God that imputeth that to those that are saved (Psa 45:14; 1 Cor 1). A man giveth his daughter to such a man, first in order to marriage, and this respects the time past, and he giveth her again at the day appointed in marriage. And in this last sense, perhaps, the text may have a meaning; that is, that all that the Father hath, before the world was, given to Jesus Christ, he giveth them again to him in the day of their espousals.
Things that are given among men, are ofttimes best at first; to wit, when they are new; and the reason is, because all earthly things wax old; but with Christ it is not so. This gift of the Father is not old and deformed, and unpleasant in his eyes; and therefore to him it is always new. When the Lord spake of giving the land of Canaan to the Israelites, he saith not, that he had given, or would give it to them, but thus: "The Lord thy God giveth thee - this good land" (Deut 9:6). Not but that he had given it to them, while they were in the loins of their fathers, hundreds of years before. Yet he saith now he giveth it to them; as if they were now also in the very act of taking possession, when as yet they were on the other side Jordan. What then should be the meaning? Why, I take it to be this. That the land should be to them always as new; as new as if they were taking possession thereof but now. And so is the gift of the Father, mentioned in the text, to the Son; it is always new, as if it were always new.
"All that the Father giveth me." In these words you find mention made of two persons, the Father and the Son; the Father giving, and the Son receiving or accepting of this gift. This, then, in the first place, clearly demonstrateth, that the Father and the Son, though they, with the Holy Ghost, are one and the same eternal God; yet, as to their personality, are distinct. The Father is one, the Son is one, the Holy Spirit is one. But because there is in this text mention made but of two of the three, therefore a word about these two. The giver and receiver cannot be the same person in a proper sense, in the same act of giving and receiving. He that giveth, giveth not to himself, but to another; the Father giveth not to the Father, to wit, to himself, but to the Son: the Son receiveth not of the Son, to wit, of himself, but of the Father: so when the Father giveth commandment, he giveth it not to himself, but to another; as Christ saith, "He gave me a commandment" (John 12:49). So again, "I am one that bear witness of myself, and the Father that sent me beareth witness of me" (John 8:18).
Further, here is something implied that is not expressed, to wit, that the Father hath not given all men to Christ; that is, in that sense as it is intended in this text, though in a larger, as was said before, he hath given him every one of them; for then all should be saved: he hath, therefore, disposed of some another way. He gives some up to idolatry; he gives some up to uncleanness, to vile affections, and to a reprobate mind. Now these he disposeth of in his anger, for their destruction, that they may reap the fruit of their doings, and be filled with the reward of their own ways (Acts 7:42; Rom 1:24,26,28). But neither hath he thus disposed of all men; he hath even of mercy reserved some from these judgments, and those are they that he will pardon, as he saith, "For I will pardon them whom I reserve" (Jer 50:20). Now these he hath given to Jesus Christ, by will, as a legacy and portion. Hence the Lord Jesus says, "This is the Father's will which hath sent me, that of all which he hath given me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up again at the last day" (John 6:39).
[FIRST, THE TEXT TREATED BY WAY OF EXPLICATION.]
[SECOND, THE TEXT TREATED BY WAY OF OBSERVATION.]