65And he said, “This is why I told you that no one can come to me unless it is granted him by the Father.”
The Holy Bible: English Standard Version. (2016). (Jn 6:65). Wheaton, IL: Crossway Bibles.
For with the words “No one can come to Me” Christ intends to say that faith is God’s gift. And He is willing to give it, if only we request it of Him. To come to Him means to believe in Christ. But he who does not believe is far from Him. You assume that faith is your doing, your power, your work; and thereby you interfere with God’s work. It is the gift of God, so that He alone may be accorded the honor and no man may boast of his strength. It is the Father who draws us and gives us the Word, and the Holy Spirit and faith by the Word. It is His gift, not our work or power. St. Paul also tells us that in Eph. 2:8–9: “For by grace you have been saved; and this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, lest any man should boast.”
This is the essence of true Christianity, against which the world has always contended madly and foolishly and against which it still rages. Here there is no boasting of any work but only of the Father’s drawing. Furthermore, my flesh, blood, spirit, and all that pertains thereto is His, not ours, if I am to have life. Consequently, all the other works we do are entirely excluded.
Luther, M. (1999). Luther’s works, vol. 23: Sermons on the Gospel of St. John: Chapters 6-8. (J. J. Pelikan, H. C. Oswald, & H. T. Lehmann, Eds.) (Vol. 23, p. 181). Saint Louis: Concordia Publishing House.