I woke up with this passage running through my mind at 4 am this morning:
“…and that from childhood you have known the sacred writings which are able to give you the wisdom that leads to salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness;” -2 Timothy 3:15-16
Before Paul goes on to expound upon the inspiration and authority of our scriptures he first establishes their sufficiency to lead us to salvation.
The gracious Holy Spirit, by means of inspiration, has sufficiently made known all we need in order to respond to Him in faith. The word of God is powerful and effective, as the author of Hebrews puts it:
“For the word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart.” -Hebrews 4:12
Should we ever conclude, therefore, that God’s words, graciously inspired by His Spirit, are somehow insufficient to lead anyone who hears them to faith and repentance?
Need there be some kind of extra grace that makes the grace of the gospel powerful enough to lead one to salvation? I see no convincing evidence of this need in scripture, do you? If you do see it, is that because God has granted you a grace which makes you more capable of seeing truths revealed in scripture that He has kept from me and other believers? Or could it simply be that we all have the same gracious revelation and any errors of interpretation or suppressing of its truth is due only to our own free will?
I suspect that much of the dispute within in the church over the centuries would not have been necessary if we simply dropped this unfounded presupposition that God’s gracious work needs more grace to work.