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Compel Them to Come In: Calvinism and the Free Offer of the Gospel (Macleod)

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Christian Focus Publications

If we believe in God’s sovereign predestination, how can we offer Christ to sinners indiscriminately?

How could someone who knew that no one can come to Christ unless the Father draws them still plead with them to look to the Saviour?

The Bible clearly entreats us to go after the lost, so Donald Macleod tackles the objections raised by those who argue that since there is no universal redemption there should be no universal gospel offer.


Table of Contents: 

  1. The Free Offer and Man's Spiritual Bondage
  2. The Free Offer and the Doctrine of Predestination
  3. The Free Offer and Limited Atonement
  4. The Free Offer and Divine Sincerity
  5. Delivering the Free Offer
  6. The Free Offer: Knowing Where the Fish are Hiding
  7. The Free Offer and the Messenger 

Appendix - Sermon by C. H. Spurgeon



Donald Macleod retired as the Principal of the Free Church of Scotland College, Edinburgh in 2010. Regarded as one of Britain’s most prominent theologians he has written extensively on a wide range of issues.



"This compelling new book proves we do not have to choose between distinctively Reformed theology and passionate evangelistic preaching. The universal offer is at the very heart of authentic Calvinism. Grace is rich and free." - Alasdair I. Macleod, Founding Pastor, St Andrews Free Church, Scotland

"I always enjoy reading Donald MacLeod, as much for the clarity and precision of his arguments as for the elegance of his theology.  Here he addresses an important topic – the free offer of the gospel – with his usual pungency and passion.  It will clarify the issue for those who believe in the free offer but are confused by its connection to God’s sovereignty; and it will hopefully persuade those who are tempted to truncate God’s grace in a misguided attempt to exalt his election." - Carl R. Trueman, Professor of Biblical and Religious Studies, Grove City College, Pennsylvania

"Using both Scripture and the history of evangelistic preaching Donald Macleod deals with all the common obstacles that hinder Calvinists from passionately appealing to their hearers to believe in the Lord Jesus. And very effectively too. I found Compel them to Come In searching, humbling, convicting, encouraging, and deeply persuasive. In the hope that that’s how you might find it, may I urge you to make time to read it?" - David Campbell, Pastor, North Preston Evangelical Church, Preston, England

"This book will powerfully reinforce the truth that unrestricted evangelism is the product rather than the antithesis of Reformed theology. Without compromising on the doctrine of predestination, the reality of the human condition or the power of the Holy Spirit, Donald Macleod insists that Biblical evangelistic preaching must be directed to all, without qualification, and must be presented skilfully, passionately and persuasively. The gospel is a plea to the lost, sent out with a sincerity which originates in God himself." - Iver Martin, Principal, Edinburgh Theological Seminary, Edinburgh, Scotland

"Here we have an antidote to cool, professional detachment, as we are reminded that the business of evangelism is serious.  There is a heaven to win and a hell to lose.  Drawing from the wells of Scripture and the high–water marks of mission in Church history, we are reminded that the communication of the gospel must be carried out with passion, conviction and persuasion." - David Meredith, Mission Director, Free Church of Scotland, Inverness

"This is by far the best account I have ever read on the free offer of the gospel. MacLeod demolishes all the arguments that would inhibit or restrict offering Christ freely to sinners. He sets the gospel offer in the widest context of the purpose of God and the work of Christ. Above all, he communicates this with an infectious passion for the glory of Christ and the salvation of sinners, young and old. In today’s world this book is desperately needed; it could do untold good." - Robert Letham, Wales Evangelical School of Theology, Bridgend, Wales

"Too frequently the free offer of the gospel is hedged about with qualifications that distort the Biblical picture of the character of God and of Jesus Christ. This wonderfully clear book by a notable Reformed teacher and preacher will thrill the soul of any reader and encourage preachers to persuade sinners of every kind as they proclaim the Gospel to them." - Rowland S. Ward, Research Lecturer, Presbyterian Theological College, Melbourne

"Compel Him to Come In has all the trademarks we have come to recognise in Professor Donald Macleod’s writings: mastery of doctrine, fulness of biblical insight, cogency of reasoning, clarity of expression, and an eloquence driven by the subject matter. At first you will think you are reading a powerful exposition of the free offer of the gospel in the face of criticisms and misunderstandings of reformed theology. It is indeed that. But by the end you will realise that it more. For Compel Him to Come In is really about the gospel itself. A book for all, it is a must–read for preachers, not least because it models the powerful, passionate appeals it commends." - Sinclair B. Ferguson, Chancellor’s Professor of Systematic Theology, Reformed Theological Seminary, Jackson, Mississippi

"This is one of the most soul–stirring, liberating books that I have read on this subject. Donald MacLeod provides the reader with a necessary reminder to seek to persuade and implore men and women on Christ’s behalf to be reconciled to God. I hope that it will show up in my preaching. I commend this book particularly to a rising group of young reformed pastors who when it comes to this matter of the ‘free offer’ are in danger of being tripped up by their own theological shoelaces." - Alistair Begg, Senior Pastor, Parkside Church, Chagrin Falls, Ohio