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A. By no means. But it exalts and magnifies His greatness, and goodness, and wisdom, to suppose that His providence is concerned in the most minute events, as well as those of the greatest magnitude, throughout His vast dominions. Frequently events, which at the time of their occurrence seem trivial, are afterwards found to be of the greatest moment.
Q. 7. What effect has the disbelief or denial of God's particular and general providence?
A. It destroys the foundation of submission, trust, hope, and prayer, and leads directly to a neglect of these important duties.
Q. 8. What effect has the belief of God's particular and general providence?
A. It leads, 1. To see and acknowledge God in all things; 2. To feel our immediate, constant and absolute dependance upon Him, and obligations to Him; 3. To fear Him, to trust in Him, to be grateful to him, to hope in Him, and to worship Him.
Q. 9. Has God a right to exercise a providence over the works of His hands?
A. He has. As all creatures and things are His by virtue of creation; so, He has an undoubted and inalienable right to exercise such a providence over them as His infinite wisdom and goodness shall dictate.
Q. 10. Is submission to the providence of God at all times, a duty?
A. It is. And this duty arises from the fact, 1. That God has a right to exercise a providence over all creatures, and, 2. That his providence is wise, holy, just, and good. Were any event to take place, in which the providence of God was not concerned, submission would not be duty. And in submitting to God's dispensations, we should view them connectedly, and not singly;—in their designs and consequences, as well as in their nature. (c)
(c) Ps. cxlv. 17. The Lord is righteous in all his ways, and holy in all his works. Is. xxviii. 29. This also cometh forth from the Lord of hosts, which is wonderful in counsel, and excellent in working. -Rom. viii. 28. And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.-Ps. xxxix. 9. I was dumb, I opened not my mouth; because thou didst it.-Matt. vi. 10. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done Matt. xxvi. 39. Nevertheless, not as I
in earth, as it is in heaven. will, but as thou wilt.
What is the evidence of the existence of an
A. 1. The light of nature suggests their existence. In the works of creation, we ascend step by step from lifeless unorganized matter to man, the lord of this lower creation. Analogy and the nature of man lead us to suppose, that the scale of existence still continues. By his body, man is allied to the beasts that perish; by his soul, he seems to be allied to spiritual and immortal beings. Hence we are led to think, that there are such. -In the works of creation, we behold a gradation of being, so far as our knowledge extends; and from analogy it would seem that this gradation may continue, and that there may be other beings, endowed with other and nobler powers. People of all ages, nations, and religions, have believed in the existence of spirits, possessing faculties and capacities vastly superior to man. This general belief is an argument in favor of their existence, whether it arose at first from reason or from immediate revelation which has been handed down by tradition, or from analogy, or from any other source. 2. The Bible gives us the fullest assurance of their existence; for it speaks of them in more than a hundred different places.
Q. 2. With what nature did God create the angels? A. He created them spiritual, immortal, holy, excelling in knowledge, mighty in power, quick and the most noble and exalted of His intelligent creatures. (a)
(a) Ps. civ. 4. Who maketh his angels spirits; his ministers a flaming fire. Luke xx. 36. Neither can they die any more, for they are equal unto angels; and are the children of God, being the children of the resurrection.-Matt. xxv. 51. When the Son of man shall come in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit upon the throne of his glory.-2 Sam. xiv. 20. And my Lord is wise, according to the wisdom of an angel of God, to know all things that are in the earth.-Ps. ciii. 20. Bless the Lord, ye his angels, that excel in strength, that do his commandments, hearkening unto the voice of his word.—Heb. i. 14. Are they not all ministering spirits sent forth to minister for them who shall be heirs of salvation?
Q. 3. What place did God assign to the angels as their residence.
A. The highest heavens, or the heaven of heavens. (b)
Q. 4. Are they the subjects of God's moral govern
A. Most certainly. They are subject to His laws, and accountable to Him for their conduct. And the rule of conduct, given to angels, was undoubtedly the same in substance, as that given to man in innocence. (c)
Q. 5. Were the angels as soon as created put upon probation?
A. They were. A term of trial was assigned to them all. Each one was to obey, or disobey, for himself. (d)
Q. 6. upon trial?
What was the consequence of their being put
A. The consequence was, some retained their rectitude during their probationary state, and are now confirmed in holiness and happiness; others, probably through pride, rebelled against God, and ruined themselves. (d)
Q. 7. What do the Scriptures say respecting the number of the holy angels?
A. They teach that the number is vastly great. They represent them as innumerable. (e)
(b) Rev. vii. 11. And all the angels stood round about the throne, and about the elders and the four beasts, and fell before the throne on their faces, and worshipped God.
(c) Matt. xxii. 37-40. Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.-Ps. ciii. 19. The Lord hath prepared his throne in the heavens; and his kingdom ruleth over all.-Matt. vi. 10. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven.
(d) 1 Tim. v. 21. I charge thee before God and the Lord Jesus Christ, and the elect angels, that thou observe these things, without preferring one before another; doing nothing by partiality.-2 Pet. ii. For if God spared not the angels that sinned, but cast them down to hell, and delivered them into chains of darkness to be reserved unto judgment.
(e) Heb. xii. 22. But ye are come unto mount Sion, and unto the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to an innumerable company of angels.-Ps. lxviii. 17. The chariots of God are twenty thousand, even thousands of angels.-Dan. vii. 10. Thousand thou
Q. 8. What are the names given to angels in the Scriptures?
A. They are called spirits, angels, cherubim, seraphim, watchers, morning stars, sons of God, thrones, dominions, principalities, and powers. (f)
Q. 9. Why are the angels called by these different
A. They are called spirits, because immaterial and invisible; angels, because agents, or messengers of Jehovah; cherubim, because of their extensive knowledge; -seraphim, because of their holy zeal and love;-watchers, because of their vigilance and care;―morning stars, because of their splendid nature and early creation;— sons of God, because they bear the impress of His image; -thrones, dominions, principalities, and powers, because of their exalted dignity of nature, high elevation of character, and sublime employments.
Q. 10. What is the employment of holy angels?
A. They are employed by God in the administration of the affairs of the world, especially in ministering for them who shall be heirs of salvation. They will be subservient to Christ in the transactions of the great day of judgment, and they do now, and forever will, unite with the spirits of just men made perfect, in the worship of Heaven. But they cannot, in all respects and to the same degree as the saints, join in the song of Moses and the Lamb; for they themselves never felt the stings of sin
sands ministered unto him, and ten thousand times ten thousand stood before him.-Matt. xxvi. 53. Thinkest thou that I cannot now pray to my Father, and he shall presently give me more than twelve legions of angels?-Luke ii. 13. And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host, praising God. (f) Heb i. 14. Are they not all ministering spirits, sent forth to
minister for them who shall be heirs of saivation?-Heb. i. 6. again, when he bringeth in the First Begotten into the world, he saith, And let the angels of God worship him.-Ezek. x. 19. And the cherubims lifted up their wings, and mounted up from the earth in my sight. -Is. vi. 2. Above it stood the seraphims; each one had six wings; with twain he covered his face, and with twain he covered his feet, and with twain he did fly.-Dan. iv. 17. This matter is by decree of the watchers, and the demand by the word of the holy ones.-Job xxxviii. 7. When the morning stars sang together, and all the sons of God shouted for joy.-Col. i. 16. For by him were all things created that are in heaven and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers; all things were created by him, and for him.
and guilt, and never tasted the sweetness of pardoning and saving mercy. (g)
Q. 11. How should we regard holy angels?
A. We should love them for their moral excellence, feel grateful for their benevolent conduct towards us, respect them for their dignity and worth, and imitate them in all things which may be imitated by us.
Q. 12. Is there any Saviour provided for the apostate angels?
There is none; and, consequently, they must perish forever. They are now in utter despair and misery, being reserved in chains under darkness unto the judgment of the great day. (h)
A. 13. What are the fallen angels usually called in the Scriptures?
A. They are usually called devils. The one who is represented as having been an angel of pre-eminent distinction, and as the first in rebellion, and who is at the head of apostate angels, is called by other names, such as Satan, Dragon, Serpent, Angel of the bottomless pit, Abaddon, Apollyon, Accuser of the brethren, Beelzebub, Prince of devils, Prince of the power of the air, and god of this world.(i)
(g) Ps. xxxiv. 7. The angel of the Lord encampeth round about them that fear him, and delivereth them.-Heb. i. 14. Are they not all ministering spirits, sent forth to minister for them who shall be heirs of salvation.-Matt. xxiv. 31. And he shall send his angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.-Rev. vii. 11. And all the angels stood round about the throne, and about the elders, and the four beasts, and fell before the throne on their faces, and worshipped God.
(h) Jude 6. And the angels which kept not their first estate, but left their own habitation, he hath reserved in everlasting chains, under darkness, unto the judgment of the great day.-Matt. xxv. 41. Then shall he say to them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels.-2 Pet. ii. 4. For if God spared not the angels that sinned, but cast them down to hell, and delivered them into chains of darkness, to be reserved unto judgment.
(i) James ii. 19. Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well; the devils, also, believe and tremble.-Job i. 12. And the Lord said unto Satan, Behold all that he hath is in thy power; only upon himself put not forth thine hand. So Satan went forth from the presence of the Lord.-Rev. xii. 9. And the great Dragon was cast out, that old Serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole