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consistently I apprehend with the opinions just recited, that “the fundamental principles on “ which the Calviniftic system refts, are incon6 trovertible*;" and that “ the Authors of our co national forms unqueftionably built upon « the fame foundation with this celebrated « Reförmér, but have not carried the fuper« ttructure to the same heighty:"_then f hear them referring more especially to the “ doctrines of Austin, as the great model " of their opinions :-when I recollect, that one rigid maintainer of the higher fystem of Calvinifm commemorates this father as “the “ great," “ the excellent,"

" " the evangelical," because of his steadfast attachment to, and nervous successful defences of, the decrees of God"; that another extols “ the piety, learn

ing, and ability," with which he confutės «« tlie doctrines of free-will, universal redemp« tion, and falling from grace b;" and that it is the avowal of Calvin himself, that " if he chose " to compofe an entire volame from Austin, he 6 could readily convince the reader, that he

* Overton, p. 355. → Ibid. p. 94.

é Ibid. p. 95. Toplady on Predestination, p. 186, 144,15r. • Goliath Slain, p. 124.

« Si ex Auguftino integrum volumen contexere libeat, lectoribus oftendere promptum effet, mihi non nifi ejus verbis opus effe: fed eos prolixitate onerare nolo. Calv. Inft. lib. iii. cap. xxii, fect. 8.

tó had occasion for none but his words :" when moreover I reflecl, not on the represente ation of a partizan on either fide, but on what I understand to be the real doctrines of Auftin on the matter in debate; as, that “ Almighty * God does not will the salvation of all meni, “ but only of the elect d;" that “ Chrift did “ not die for all mer, but only for the elect", that “all men have not the means of salvation “ given to them by God, but that the non“ elect are abandoned in a gracelefs mass “ of perdition, excluded from the gift of faith, K and denied the opportunity of believivg";"

Quod scriptum est, quod vult omnes homines saloos fieri, nec tamen omnes falvi fiunt, multis quidem modis intelligi poteft, ex quibus in aliis opusculis noftris aliquos commemoravimus : fed hic unum dicam. Ita dictum est, Omnes homines vult falous fieri, ut intelligantur omnes prædeftinati ; quia omne genus hominum in eis eft. Auguft. de Correptione et Gratia,

cap. xiv,

Ita debemus intelligere quod scriptum fit, Qui omnes hoa mines vult falvos fieri, tanquam diceretur, nullum hominem fieri falvum, nisi quem fieri ipfe voluerit : non quod nullus fit hominum, nifi

quem

falvum fieri velit, sed quod nullus fiat, nisi quem velit. Enchiridion, cap. xxix.

. Adde adhuc, Qui proprio Filio fuo non pepercit, fed pro nobis omnibus tradidit eum, quomodo etiam non cum illo omnia nobis donavit ? Sed quibus ? Nobis præfcitis, et prædestinatis, justificatis, glorificatis, de quibus fequitur. In Erang. Johan. Truci. eap. 45.

* Hæc eft prædestinatio sanctorum ; nihil aliud quam præscientia fcilicet et præparatio beneficiorum Dei, quibus sertiflime liberantur, quicumque liberantur. Ceteri autem ubi, oifi in maffa perditionis, jufto divino judicio' relinquuntur? Ubi Tyrii relicti funt et Sidonii, qui etiam credere potuerunt, fi mira illa Chrifti figna vidiffent. Sed quoniam ut crederent, non erat eis datum, etiam unde crederent est negatum. Ex quo apparet, habere quofdam in ipfo ingenio divinum naturaliter munus intelligentiæ, quo moveantur ad fidem, fi congrua fuis mentibus vel audiant verba, vel signa confpiciant: et tamen fi Dei altiore judicio a perditionis massa non sunt gratiæ prædestinatione discreti, nec ipfa eis adhibentur vel dicta divina, vel facta, per quæ poffent credere, fi audirent utique talia, vel viderent. .... Audiunt enim hæc et faciunt, quibus datum eft; non autem faciunt, five audiant five non audiant, quibus datum non eft. De Dono Perfeverantia,

that “ the commiflion of fin and the blindnefs " and hardness of heart of the finner are not

barely permitted by God, but are positive “ operative acts of his most omnipotent power, 6 and his free and unbiassed will & ;" and that “ Judas was chosen, not like the other Apostles * in mercy to partake of Christ's kingdom, but “ that he was chosen and pitched upon in

cap. xiv.

• Quantum ad ipfos attinet (malos scil.) quod Deus noluit, fecerunt: quantum vero ad omnipotentiam Dei, nullo modo id efficere valuerunt. Hoc quippe ipfo, quod contra voluntatem ejus fecerunt, de ipfis facta est voluntas ejus. Propterea namque, magna opera Domini, exquisita in omnes voluntates ejus ; ut miro et ineffabili modo non fiat præter ejus voluntatem, quod etiam contra ejus fit voluntatem. Quia non fieret, si non fineret; nec utique nolens finit, fed volens. Enchir.

cap. xxix.

Non eft dubitandum, voluntati Dei humanas voluntates non pofle refiftere, quo minus faciat ipse, quod vult : quandoquidem etiam de ipfis hominum voluntatibus, quod vult, cum vult, facit :- fine dubio habens humanorum cordium,

judgment on purpose to commit the damna“ ble act of betraying his Malter, and to be “ the means of shedding his blood 8:"~I catch through the veil of mildness and moderation too clear a view of that frightful phantom of " those rigours of the system "," from which our Calvinistic brethren would fain be released,

quo placeret, inclinandorum omnipotentissimam potestatem. De Corrept. et Grat. cap xiv. .

Deus omnipotens, five per misericordiam cujus vult misereatur, live per judicium quem vult obduret, nec inique aliquid facit, nec nisi volens quidquam facit, et omnia quæcunque vult facit. Enchir. cap. xxix.

Agit Omnipotens in cordibus hominum etiam motum voluntatis eorum, ut per eos agat, quod per eos agere ipfe voluerit. De Grut. et lib. Arbit. cap. xxi.

-Manifeftatur, operari Deum in cordibus hominum ad inclipandas eorum voluntates quocunque voluerit, five ad bona, pro sua misericordia ; five ad mala, pro meritis eorum, judicio atique fuo, aliquando aperto, aliquando occulto, semper autem justo. De Grat. et lib Arbit.

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cap. xxi.

i Electi autem funt ad regnandum cum Chrifto, non quo. mudo electus est Judas ad opus cui congruebat. Ab illo quippe electus eft, qui novit bene uti etiam malis, ut et per ejus opus damnabile, illud, propter quod ipse venerat, opus venerabile compleretur. Cum itaque audimus, Nonne ego vos duodecim elegi, et unus er vobis diabolus est, illos debemus intelligere ele&tos per misericordiam, illum, per judicium ; illos ad obtinendum regnuin suum, illum ad effundendum fanguinem fuum. De Corr. et Grat. cap. vii, h Overton, p. 96.

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to suffer me to entertain a reasonable hope of any important approximation in our opinions.

There is indeed in absolute election, and in its obvious and neceffary consequences, that which must ftagger the faith of any man, who is not prepared to go to much greater lengths, than comport with the gentle terms of mildness and moderation. It was the memorable oba fervation and advice of a late Predeftinarian, “ You will reap much improvement from the “ view of predestination in its full extent, if

your eyes are able steadfastly to look at all « which God hath made known concerning it. " But if your fpiritual fight is weak, forego the « inquiry as far as reprobation is concerned, * and be content to know but in part, till « death transmits you to that perfect state, * where you shall know even as you are is known i.” What an acknowledgment is this, to the infurmountable prejudice of absolute predestination! For what can we think of a doctrine, which its strenuous maintainer represents, as made known by God, but at the same time as too formidable for the contemplation of an ordinary mind? And how can it be a part of that revelation, which Christ commanded to be disclosed to 6

every creature, and more especially to the poor and the weak?

Toplady on Predestination, Preface, p. viii.

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