How can I speak to my non-Reformed friends about Reformed theology?

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The question is, What does the Bible say? It is not, What is your experience? It is not, What are your imaginings? From Genesis to Revelation, Scripture displays an unquestionable presentation of the sovereignty of God in salvation, in the affairs of providence, and in creation itself. You have to bring people to the Bible because the Bible speaks for itself.

The Bible is crystal clear on the subject of God’s sovereignty. I have often said that it is not hard to understand; it is just hard to swallow. I have written a book for Reformation Trust called Foundations of Grace. It is a six-hundred-page book covering every verse in the Bible on the sovereignty of God in salvation. When it was first published, the Scripture index had so many verses that we had to go to a triple-column format to catalog all the verses. This is far beyond just Romans 9, Ephesians 1, and John 6. I walk through virtually every biblical author to show that the Bible speaks with one voice on the sovereignty of God.

When someone says to me and says, “I have just come to the knowledge of Reformed doctrine, especially in salvation,” I smile and say, “Welcome to the Bible” because it is throughout the Bible. I do not say that smugly but matter-of-factly. I was once an Arminian, and it took me two years, full-time as a seminary student, working through the various verses in Scripture until I was pinned to the wall. I had a choice: Would I believe the Bible, or would I believe my own thoughts about how I think God operates? If you yield to the authority of Scripture, it is very clear.

The Lord Jesus Christ had more to say about God’s sovereignty than anyone else in the Bible. I have a teaching series with Ligonier on The Doctrines of Grace in the Gospel of John. It contains twelve lessons going through the gospel of John, explaining what Jesus had to teach on this subject in just one of the four Gospels.

We must always get back to the Bible, which is why the Reformation was the greatest back-to-the-Bible movement this world has seen since the first century. The more you go back to the Bible, the more you go back to the sovereignty of God. The cardinal Reformation truths reflect this because the base is sola Scriptura, “Scripture alone.”

That is my answer: go to the Bible and you’ll find the doctrines of grace and the sovereignty of God.

This transcript is from a live Ask Ligonier event with Steven Lawson and has been lightly edited for readability. To ask Ligonier a biblical or theological question, email or message us on Facebook or Twitter.