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Method of the Divine Government.

Method of the Divine Government.

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Published by GLENN DALE PEASE

BY WILLIAM JONES, M.D., D.D., LL.D.



" Are not five sparrows sold for two farthings, and not one of them is forgot- ten before God ? But even the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not ther^ore : ye are of more value than many sparrows." — Luke xii. 6, 7.

BY WILLIAM JONES, M.D., D.D., LL.D.



" Are not five sparrows sold for two farthings, and not one of them is forgot- ten before God ? But even the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not ther^ore : ye are of more value than many sparrows." — Luke xii. 6, 7.

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Published by: GLENN DALE PEASE on Oct 15, 2013
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METHOD OF THE DIVIE GOVERMET.BY WILLIAM JOES, M.D., D.D., LL.D." Are not five sparrows sold for two farthings, and not one of them isforgot- ten before God ? But even the very hairs of your head are allnumbered. Fear not ther^ore : ye are of more value than manysparrows." — Luke xii. 6, 7.There are three different theories of the divinegovernment. The first and the oldest is known as thenecessitarian theory of the divine administration. Thistheory teaches that everything that transpires in all itsminute phenomena was predetermined by the Creatorbefore the first atom of the universe was created, andthat consequent upon that antecedent fact there are noalternatives with God or with man.The second theory is known as the providential orpermissive system, which assumes that all evil, bothphysical and moral, is essential as a factor in the di-vine government, and is utilized in the gospel system,and made tributary to the glory of God as a work-ing force in the probational life of man, and that Godregulates the amount of evil according to his ownpurpose.The third theory is based upon the assumption thatman is a moral being ; that he is a bona fide subject of law, accountable to God for his deportment ; that he isunder the environment of law in the whole domain of bi$ tripartite bein^, amenable to God, to th^ §tate^I02 PROM ELIM TO CARBffEL.and to himself ; and, as a creature of law, he volition-
 
ates his relation*to every other being in the universe.This theory embraces the fact that there are alterna-tives with God and with man ; that man is a bona fidesubject of law, under the operations of grace ; and thatit is only by the strictest obedience to law that gracebecomes available, and is made efficient in the salvationand progress of man. This view of the subject is inharmony with the general principles of divine provi-dence, and with the essential character and attributesof Jehovah.The text plainly teaches the Father's individual andcontinuous oversight of the creatures he has made.We regard the fact of divine providence as inseparablefrom the Christian system ; but we regard correct viewsof providence as essential to correct Christian ethics.The providential oversight is personal, the providen-tial procedure is according to the constitution andlaws of the universe, and the providential measuresmust always harmonize with the principles of eternalright. There can be no caprice on the part of theadministrator, nor can there be any coercion of a moralagent ; both the subject and the soverei^ are underthe environment of law.There are those who regard as providential only suchevents as are disastrous. When great calamities over-take a nation, when adversity assails a man, or deathenters a household, — these events by some persons areregarded as providential. The sickness and death of children are regarded as purely providential ; they arespoken of in the pulpit and the press as mysteriousprovidences.METHOD OF THE DIVIE GOVERMET. IO3But when we remember that the entire human race
 
is now, and always has been, under the environment of law, and comes into the world under sentence of death,as a direct result of sin ; when we consider the wholehuman family under sentence of death for sin, and addto that fact, the helplessness of children and the igno-rance of the nurses, and the thoughtlessness of mothers, — the mystery changes, and it becomes the problem of the ages, that so many children reach maturity as do ;and it is inexplicable, except on the hypothesis of God'sconstant providential care in delivering them from sur-rounding dangers.God is sovereign. He governs all, but his govern-ment is neither arbitrary nor capricious. God is nota tyrant, and his government cannot be despotic.His administration is according to universal law, bothin the natural world and in the spiritual world.Obedience to divine law, secures both moral andphysical health, and gives happiness to soul and body.Disobedience to any divine law, results in disaster,in suflfering, or in death.God has affixed suffering in its varied forms, as theconsequence of violated law. He did this to hedgeman into a life of virtue and obedience ; and no being,made in the likeness and image of God, ever did orever could suffer, or sorrow, if sin had not disturbedthe healthful relations between that being and God.There is no lack of harmony in the divine method.God's natural and moral providences both flow forthfrom himself. God's government is a unit, and hisparticiilar or special providences are integral parts of one complete system of government.104 FROM ELIM TO CARBfEL.

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