God has purposed the salvation of all men.
“Having made known unto us the mystery of his will, according to his good pleasure, which he hath purposed in himself, that in the dispensation of the fullness of times, he might gather together in one all things in Christ, both which are in heaven, and which are on earth, even in him.” (Eph. 1:9,10)
It is evident from this passage, that God has purposed to gather together all things in Christ. God’s purpose agrees with his will or pleasure.
He wills to have all men saved; he has no pleasure in the death of the wicked; and accordingly he has purposed to gather together in one, all things in Christ, both which are in heaven, and which are on earth.
This is God’s purpose; this is what he has purposed in himself.
And this is not the gathering together of those things only which are in Christ, but the gathering together of all things in him.
“Unto him shall the gathering of the people be.” (Gen. 49:10)
And Jesus confirms this: “And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto me.” (John 12:32)
Thus we see all things are to be gathered into Christ. They are all to have his spirit, and partake of his new creation; for “if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold all things are become new.” (2 Cor. 5:17)
By the phrase “all things,” as Archbishop Newcome says, it meant, “all persons, all intelligent beings.
The purpose of God cannot fail: it must certainly be accomplished.
“The Lord of hosts hath sworn, saying, surely as I have purposed, so shall it stand.” (Isaiah 14:24)
“For the Lord of hosts hath purposed, and who shall disannul it? And his hand is stretched out, and who shall turn it back?” (Isaiah 14:27) “I have purposed it, I will also do it.” (Isaiah 46:11)
Now, whatever God purposes must take place.
God can have no second thoughts; hence, Paul speaks of “the purpose of him who worketh all things according to the counsel (i.e. the previous consultations or deliberations) of his own will.” (Eph 1:11)
What, then, shall hinder the accomplishment of this purpose? Has he formed a plan which he cannot execute?
No; the concurrent testimony of the sacred writers is, that whatever God has purposed, SHALL BE DONE.
So let it be, O Lord. -Thomas Whittemore-