The Necessity of Regeneration
"…therefore he cannot favorably look upon an unrighteous person, so that this necessity is not founded only in the command of God that we be renewed, but in the very nature of the thing, because God, in regard of his holiness, cannot converse with an impure creature. God must change his nature, or the sinner’s nature must be changed. There can be no friendly communion between the two of different natures without the change of one into the likeness of the other. Wolves and sheep, darkness and light, can never agree. God cannot love a sinner as a sinner, because he hates impurity by a necessity of nature as well as a choice of will. It is impossible for him to love it as to cease to be holy.
This change cannot be then on God’s part; it therefore must be on man’s part. It must therefore be by grace, whereby the sinner may be made fit for converse with God, since God cannot embrace a sinner in his dearest affections without a quality in the sinner suitable to himself. All converse is founded upon a likeness in nature and disposition; it is by grace only that the sinner in made capable of converse with God."
The Works of Stephen Charnock,
Volume 3, p. 23