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A Body of Practical Divinity - John Gill

A Body of Practical Divinity - John Gill

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Published by: Rodz Vasquez on Nov 29, 2011
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  • Book 1—Chapter 1
  • Book 1—Chapter 2
  • Book 1—Chapter 3
  • Book 1—Chapter 4
  • Book 1—Chapter 5
  • Book 1—Chapter 6
  • Book 1—Chapter 7
  • Book 1—Chapter 8
  • Book 1—Chapter 9
  • Book 1—Chapter 10
  • Book 1—Chapter 11
  • Book 1—Chapter 12
  • Book 1—Chapter 13
  • Book 1—Chapter 14
  • Book 1—Chapter 15
  • Book 1—Chapter 16
  • Book 1—Chapter 17
  • Book 1—Chapter 18
  • Book 1—Chapter 19
  • Book 1—Chapter 20
  • Book 1—Chapter 21
  • Book 1—Chapter 22
  • Book 1—Chapter 23
  • Book 1—Chapter 25
  • Book 1—Chapter 26
  • Book 1—Chapter 27

A Body of Practical Divinity

Dr. John Gill (1690-1771)

an e-sword .top file


Introduction Having completed an Exposition of the whole Bible, the Books both of the Old and of the New Testament; I considered with myself what would be best next to engage in for the further instruction of the people under my care; and my thoughts led me to enter upon a Scheme of Doctrinal and Practical Divinity, first the former and then the latter; the one being the foundation of the other, and both having a close connection with each other. Doctrine has an influence upon practice, especially evangelical doctrine, spiritually understood, affectionately embraced, and powerfully and feelingly experienced; so true is what the Apostle asserts, that the "Grace of God", that is, the Doctrine of the Grace of God, "that bringeth Salvation", the good news, the glad tidings of salvation by Christ, which is peculiar to Gospel Doctrine, "hath appeared to all men", Gentiles as well as Jews, in the external ministry of the word; teaching us, to whom it comes with power and efficacy in the demonstration of the Spirit, "that denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly in this present world", Tit 2:11,12. Where there is not the doctrine of faith, the obedience of faith cannot be expected. Where there is not the doctrine of the Gospel, and men have not learned Christ, they live for the most part as if there was no God in the world, and give themselves up to work all sin with greediness. And on the other hand, doctrine without practice, or a mere theory and speculative knowledge of things, unless reduced to practice, is of no avail; such are only “vainly puffed up in their fleshly minds, profess to know God in word, but in works deny him, have a form of godliness without the power of it, a name to live but are dead.” Doctrine and practice should go together; and in order both to know and do the will of God, instruction in doctrine and practice is necessary; and the one being first taught will lead on to the other. This method of instruction the Apostle Paul has pointed out to us in some of his Epistles, especially in the Epistle to the Ephesians; in which he first treats of Election, Predestination, Adoption, Acceptance in Christ, Redemption and Pardon of Sin, Regeneration and other doctrines of grace, and of the Privileges of the Saints under the Gospel dispensation; and then enforces the several duties incumbent on them as men and Christians, respecting them in their several stations, in the church, in their families, and in the world. So the Apostle instructed Timothy, first to "teach" the wholesome words of our Lord Jesus, the doctrine that is according to godliness and productive of it, and then to "exhort" and press men to the duties of religion from evangelical motives and principles. And he also enjoined Titus to affirm the doctrines of the Gospel with constancy and certainty, to this end, “that they which have believed in God might be careful to maintain good works.” 1Ti 6:2,3 Tit 3:8. And now having finished my Scheme of Doctrinal Divinity, at the importunity of my friends I have been prevailed upon to publish it. Systematical Divinity, I am sensible, is now become very unpopular. Formulas and articles of faith, creeds, confessions, catechisms, and summaries of divine truths, are greatly decried in our age; and yet, what art or science soever but has been reduced to a system? physics, metaphysics, logic, rhetoric, &c. Philosophy in general has had its several systems: not to take notice of the various sects and systems of philosophy in ancient times; in the last age, the Cartesian system of philosophy greatly obtained, as the Newtonian system now does. Astronomy in particular has been considered as a system; sometimes called the System of the Universe, and sometimes the Solar or Planetary System: the first that is known is what was brought by Pythagoras into Greece and Italy, and from him called the Pythagorean System; and which was followed by many of the first and ancient philosophers, though for many years, till lay neglected; but has been of late ages revived, and now much in vogue: the next is the Ptolemaic System, advanced by Ptolemy; which places the earth in the centre of the universe, and makes the heavens, with the sun, moon, and stars, to


revolve about it; and which was universally embraced for many hundreds of years, till the Pythagorean System was revived by Copernicus, two or three hundred years ago, called, from him, the Copernican System. In short, medicine, jurisprudence or law, and every art and science, are reduced to a system or body; which is no other than an assemblage or composition of the several doctrines or parts of a science; and why should Divinity, the most noble science [1], be without a system? Evangelical truths are spread and scattered about in the sacred Scriptures; and to gather them together, and dispose of them in a regular orderly method, surely cannot be disagreeable; but must be useful, for the more clear and perspicuous understanding them, for the better retaining them in memory, and to show the connection, harmony, and agreement of them. Accordingly, we find that Christian writers, in ancient times, attempted something of this nature; as the several formulas of faith, symbols, or creeds, made in the first three or four centuries of Christianity; the "Stromata" of Clemens of Alexandria; the four books of Principles, by Origen; the divine Institutions of Lactantius; the large Catechism of Gregory Nyssene; the Theology of Gregory Nazianzen; the Exposition of the Apostles’ Symbol, by Ruffinus; and the Enchiridion of Austin, with many others that followed: and since the Reformation, we have had bodies or systems of divinity, and confessions of faith, better digested, and drawn up with greater accuracy and consistence; and which have been very serviceable to lead men into the knowledge of evangelical doctrine, and confirm them in it; as well as to show the agreement and harmony of sound divines and churches, in the more principal parts of it: and even those who now cry out against systems, confessions, and creeds, their predecessors had those of their own; Arius had his creed; and the Socinians have their catechism, the Racovian Catechism; and the Remonstrants have published their confession of faith; not to take notice of the several bodies of Divinity, published by Episcopius, Limborch, Curcellaeus, and others. The Jews, in imitation of the Christians, have reduced their theology to certain heads or articles of faith; the chief, if not the first that took this method, was the famous Maimonides, who comprised their religious tenets in "thirteen" articles: after him R. Joseph Alba reduced them to three classes, the Existence of God, the Law of Moses, and the Doctrine of Rewards and Punishments. But what makes most for our purpose, and is worthy of our example, are the Scripture Compendiums or Systems of Doctrine and Duty. What a compendium or body of laws is the "Decalogue" or "Ten Commands", drawn up and calculated more especially for the use of the Jews, and suited to their circumstances! a body of laws not to be equalled by the wisest legislators of Greece and Rome, Minos, Lycurgus, Zaleucus, and Numa; nor by the laws of the Twelve Roman Tables, for order and regularity, for clearness and perspicuity, for comprehensiveness and brevity; being divided into two tables, in the most perfect order; the first respecting the worship of God and the duties owing to him, and the other respecting men and the mutual duties they owe to each other. As prayer is a very principal and incumbent duty on men with respect to God, our Lord has given a very compendious directory, as to the matter of it, in what is commonly called the "Lord’s Prayer"; which consists of petitions the most full, proper, and pertinent, and in the most regular order. And as to articles of faith or things to be believed, we have a creed, made mention of in Heb 6:1,2 consisting of six articles; repentance from dead works, faith towards God, the doctrine of baptisms, and of laying on of hands, the resurrection of the dead, and eternal judgment. These are commonly thought to be so many articles of the Christian faith; but I rather think [2] they are so many articles of the Jewish Creed, embraced and professed by believers under the Jewish dispensation; since the Christian Hebrews are directed to consider them as the principles of the doctrine of Christ, as an introduction, and as leading on to it, and which were in some sense to be "left" and not "laid again"; they were not to stick and stop here, but to go on to perfection, by searching into and embracing doctrines more sublime and perfect, revealed in the Gospel; at least they were not to be any longer instructed in the above articles in the manner they had been, but in a clearer manner, unattended with legal ceremonies, to view them and make use of them. Thus for instance, they, the believers, Christian Hebrews, were not to learn the doctrine of repentance from slain beasts or to signify it by them, as they had been used to do; for every sacrifice brought for sin, which they were no longer obliged to, was a tacit confession and an acknowledgment of sin, and that they repented of it, and deserved to die as the creature did; but now they were to exercise evangelical repentance in the view of a crucified Christ, and remission


as Aquinas concludes by saying [4]: “Articles of faith have increased by succession of times. which they were no more to learn in this way. all the same were believed by the fathers before them. But all that I mean by this is. and thus 4 . otherwise the same articles of faith were believed by the ancients as by later posterity. since it is what Timothy had "heard" of the apostle. but to apply immediately to the blood of Christ for it. though to be improved and perfected under the Gospel dispensation. and secure truth. and a delineation. the true Messiah. but as to the explanation and express profession of them. and which was τυπος. that the principal doctrines of faith under the Jewish dispensation are reduced to a system. which cannot be understood of the Scriptures. even a set of Gospel doctrines collected out of the Scriptures and confirmed by them. the doctrines of the heretics of the first ages being opposed to one or other of them: but when other heresies sprung up and other false doctrines were taught. since life and immortality were brought to light by Christ in a clearer and brighter manner through the Gospel. 2Ti 1:13 is called υN οτυπωσις. and as opposite to the errors then broached. and to distinguish those who were found in the faith of the Gospel from those that were not. always to be looked unto and imitated. and such a form the apostle proposed to Timothy. Those articles were but few. as enjoyed under the former dispensation. but of the Gospel and the doctrines of it preached by the apostle in the ministry of the word to the Romans. teaching the cleansing virtue of the blood of Christ to wash in for sin and for uncleanness. without the intervention of sacrifices. they were now moreover to believe in Christ as the Son of God. though Gregory [3] observes. or in his public ministry. and had had their sins imputed to him. and followed. that the first summaries of faith recorded by the most ancient writers went no further than the doctrine of the Trinity. which he had bore in his own body on the tree: and as for the doctrines of the "resurrection of the dead and eternal judgment". or bathings among the Jews. defend. which made an increase of articles necessary. such as a picture or the outlines of a portrait given by painters to their learners. that according to the increase of times. and which were increased by new errors that sprung up. it became necessary to add new articles. The "doctrine of baptisms". and which was to be taught and learnt no longer in that manner. to be attended to. which had a doctrine in them. is to be understood of the divers baptisms. the knowledge of saints increased. offered up in the room and stead of his people. 1Ti 4:12 according to which they were to conform their faith and practice. Heb 8:5 and an "example".” It is easy to observe. carefully to respect and give information of to others as a rule of faith and practice [5]. and to press forward towards a greater share of knowledge of them and of other more sublime doctrines. as the God of Israel. since Christ was now made sin for his people. they were such as distinguished Jews and Gentiles. spoken of in Heb 9:10. Mention is made in the New Testament of a "form of doctrine delivered". yet the believing Hebrews were not to rest in the knowledge they had of these. either in his private conversation. a "type". for what are explicitly and under a greater number believed by posterity. which instructed in that great and evangelical truth. according to which ministers were to prophesy or preach. and though they were common to Jews and Christians. And the doctrine of "laying on of hands" respects the laying on of the hands of the priests and people on the head of the sacrifices. not indeed as to the substance. the first of these is spoken of in Ro 6:17 —-"But ye have obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine which was delivered to you".of sin by his blood: and whereas they had been taught to have "faith towards God". or pattern. translated a "pattern". always to be had π in view. though of what is agreeable to them. See Joh 14:1. but to go on to perfection. which they had yielded the obedience of faith unto. reduced into a system. and which in the next place referred to. and the nearer they were to the coming of the Saviour the more fully they perceived the mysteries of salvation: and so the articles in the formulas and symbols of the first Christians were but few. Eph 1:16 a form exactly expressed. the Saviour of lost sinners. or what concerns the Three Divine Persons. both to explain. which is not to be understood of the Scriptures or written word delivered unto them. and a "form of sound words" that had been "heard" and was to be "held fast". and of a proportion or analogy of faith. suitable to the times in which they lived. the transfer and imputation of sin to Christ. which latter were greatly strangers to a future state. implicitly and under a lesser number. as the word is rendered.

crucified under Pontius Pilate. solely immoveable and irreformable (not to be corrected and mended). on the text observes. so as that the interpretation of Scripture we bring is analogous to the articles of faith. received into heaven. “The rule of faith is truly one.” And such a set of principles these. let us prophesy according to the proportion of faith". and whatever disagrees is false and adulterate. nor any passage of Scripture brought in support of it. Ro 8:30 worthy. to which whatever agrees is true. taken out of such passages of Scripture. and there was a "regula fidei". Once more. but perfectly agreeable to them. Ac 20:21. nor so early as their time. all interpretations. as or what are similar to them and accord with the word of God. to declare explicitly our belief of them. are meant the first axioms of religion. upon the words. raised from the dead on the third day. where. to Gospel ministers to attend unto. questions. as a form and pattern. sitting now at the right hand of the Father. that is. according to the analogy of faith. very near it in words. the maker of the world. by which "faith" Calvin. if that was admitted. 5 . our divines call the sum of heavenly doctrine concerning articles of faith. according to the rule of the sacred Scripture and the Apostles’ Creed. It is strongly pleaded. it seems no ways incongruous with the sacred writings. or a summary of gospel truths. and professed very early in the Christian church. they are treated of in clear and plain words. to which whatsoever doctrine is not found to answer is convicted of falsehood. and to distinguish ourselves from those who oppose the faith once delivered to the saints. which Tertullian [6] gives in these words. that articles and confessions of faith. namely. "Whether prophesy. should be expressed in the bare words of the sacred Scriptures. a rule of faith. the apostle speaks of a "proportion" or an "analogy of faith". for what is there almost that is believed. “The analogy of faith. And a rich summary and glorious compendium and chain of Gospel truths does he deliver. disputations. and in his Son Jesus Christ. and that nothing should be considered as a fundamental article that is matter of controversy: as to the latter. who will come to judge the quick and dead by or at the resurrection of the dead. may be collected from them. embraced. that they may be conformable thereunto. but the sense of it is called in question. therefore.” And though what is now called the Apostles’ Creed might not be composed by them. is not the same as "measure" (Ro 12:3) for measure is of one thing measured. but the apostle seems to describe something more. and not repugnant: and Parseus on the text is more express saying: “Analogy. may be called the analogy of faith. born of the virgin Mary. in which men are to agree. as in their proper place. "repentance towards God". This is the rule of all prophesying (or preaching). such as are comprehended in the Symbol of the Apostolic faith (or the Apostles’ Creed) which have in them a manifest truth from the Scriptures. and opinions in the church. "Analogy" is the evident harmony of faith and consent of the heads (or articles) of faith. but what is controverted by some. and therefore called theirs. and according to it to regulate their ministrations.” Upon the whole.the apostle himself reduces his ministry to these two heads. in Ro 12:6. yet the substance of it was agreeable to their doctrine. and "faith towards the Lord" Jesus Christ. namely. received. or perverted? for as Clemens of Alexandria [8] says. agreeing with them and consenting to them. but analogy is between two things that are analogous. And a late writer [7] observes on the word "analogy". to show our agreement in them with other Christians in the principal parts of them. of believing in the only God Almighty. to prescribe a rule by which all prophesying is to be directed. to strengthen the faith of others in them. there would be scarce any article at all left us to believe. that is. therefore by faith others understand the rule of Scripture and the axioms of faith. And so Piscator. that articles and heads of faith. are to be examined.

yet by this means it will become of no interpretation at all..3” must in these his reasonings. or of any translation. and having such an energy in them. and they to whom it is made. so as to be obliging on others. the sacred Scriptures. if not destroy it. which would be utterly inconsistent with its peace. as well as all writing in defence of truth and for the confutation of errors. of a man’s own or of others. and even every member of a church where a confession of faith is required in order to communion. yea 3. use his own words.“I do not think there is any scripture so happy as to be contradicted by none. for them a minister of the word would have nothing else to do but to repeat or read some select passages of Scripture relating to any particular subject. but then that light. According to this scheme all public ministrations must be at an end. which refer to the same subject. and sense. Ac 17:2. and resurrection from the dead: and though he said no other as to substance than what Moses and the prophets said concerning Christ. his suffering of death. and have the greatest value for them. which though they accorded with the Scriptures. if the words of a translation. To what purpose is it for them that fear God to meet frequently and speak often one to another about the things of God and truths of the Gospel. and which serves to throw light on it and give a clearer discernment of it. and allegations. 2. or making use of any reasonings from them. that we are to be tied up to the bare words of Scripture concerning any doctrine of faith delivered in them. whether of the original text. or collect a string of them. yet in words different from theirs. To destroy all exposition and interpretation of Scripture. be it in the words of a translation. to be obliged to express ourselves only in the words of Scripture. and of its true sense. so that the people in common may as well. or a man’s own interpretation. to explain or strengthen any point of doctrine contained in them. when he “reasoned out of the Scriptures. explanations. must literally vary from them out of which he reasoned. it might introduce into a Christian community all sorts of errors that can be named. then both he that makes the confession. Surely the apostle Paul. as being clothed with such majesty. and if this is to be made in the bare words of Scripture. would be 1. a man cannot be sure that this always does express the sense of Scripture. though we ought to entertain the highest esteem of the words of Scripture. and by which he elucidated and confirmed his arguments concerning the Messiahship of Jesus. opening and alleging that Christ must needs have suffered and risen again from the dead. as to attend on public ministrations. concord. and deliver them without attempting any illustration of them. discernment. and that this Jesus whom he preached was Christ. ought to understand Hebrew and Greek. especially in passages difficult and controverted. must tend to make the ministry and preaching of the word in a great measure useless. if of the original. private or public. &c. we can never express our sense of them. as English. nor explain them to others according to the sense we have entertained of them. if they are not to make use of their own words to express their sense of these things by them? and how in this way can their Christian conferences be to mutual 6 . It is indeed sometimes said that "Scripture is the best interpreter of Scripture". and union: moreover. in a manner. without an explanation of their sense of them in other words. yet our sense of them cannot be expressed but in words literally varying from them: and it should be settled what is meant by bare words of Scripture.” As to the former. as when. harmony. another more clear and explicit is set unto it and compared with it. and though no scripture is of private interpretation. cannot be expressed but in words literally different from them both. To be obliged to express ourselves about divine things in the bare words of Scripture. which the words that man’s wisdom teacheth have not. This must in a great measure cramp all religious conversation about divine things. though agreeable to. and which in some respects is true. Hebrew and Greek. for the better understanding of a passage of Scripture. for without words different from. stay at home and read the Scriptures in their private houses.

A Socinian and an Antisocinian will join in saying that Christ the "Word is God". and "over all God blessed for ever". their different sentiments will not be discerned. if this is the real sentiment of his mind. if it is unlawful for me to speak or write what I conceive to be the sense of the words of scripture and the nature of the thing signified and expressed by them. in the words of Scripture. it is unlawful for me also to think or conceive in my mind what is the sense of the words or nature of the things. and yet the former holds. substance. and loosened the parts of truth as much as in them lay. that Christ is the "great God". and to frustrate the whole design of God in giving unto us the great privilege of his word. of making use of such words and expressions. whereas the latter affirms. in a word. and join them together. or how otherwise should it be known that they differ from one another? And indeed this seems to be the grand reason why it is urged with so much vehemence. so an Arian cannot be known from an Athanasian both will say. so it would be unlawful to think or conceive in the mind any other than what the Scripture expresses: the whole of what he says on this subject is worth repeating: “To deny the liberty. It is necessary therefore they should make use of their own words to express their sentiments by. that they are one in nature and essence. that he is equal with him. Indeed. the "true God". have a greater value for the Scriptures than others. not so much. though diametrically opposite. as a learned man has observed [10]. to render the Scripture itself altogether useless. the one holding that Christ is a created God. of a like but not of the same substance with his Father. are not literally and formally contained in Scripture. for. and composed in the bare words of Scripture "eos aliquid monstri alere". of the same nature. but only are unto our conceptions and apprehensions expository of what is so contained) is to deny all interpretation of the Scripture. but passed over the order and connection of the Scriptures. and that he is the only begotten Son of God by office or by adoption. being begotten by him. which is. but without expressing themselves in their own words. In this way. the necessity hereof. as Dr. yea. when the other believes that Christ is God by nature. the sentiments of one man in any point of religion cannot be distinguished from those of another. these nourish and cherish some monstrous notion. not by nature. all endeavours to express the sense of the words of it unto the understandings of one another. and the "only begotten Son of God". which to say is to make brutes of ourselves. and loosen and separate them. And sometimes such persons take detached passages of Scripture from different places. if this is the case. but two distinct persons. they are one in person or but one person. So a Sabellian or Unitarian and a Trinitarian. such as cavil at the formulas (of sound doctrine used by the orthodox) and plead they should be very short. by some. and that he is the Son of the Father by natural and eternal generation. as it may be. will neither of them scruple to say in Scripture terms what Christ says of himself and his Father. surely it cannot be unlawful to express his belief of it in such words which declare the true sense of his mind. that only Scripture words and phrases should be made use of. and surely it must be lawful so to express himself.edification? how can they build up one another in their most holy faith? how can weaker and less experienced Christians receive any advantage from more knowing and stronger ones. though they have no connection and agreement with each other. and such a method Irenaeus [11] observes the ancient heretics took.” 6. who made use of passages of Scripture “that their figments might not seem to be without a testimony. for if we are to form a 7 . nay. and yet the one maintains that he is only God by office. "I and my Father are one". that their erroneous tenets may not be detected and exposed. the other. and glory: and he that believes the latter. and of them make the form of a dog or a fox. and who fitly compares such to one who should take the effigy of a king made of jewels and precious stones by a skilful artificer. (that is.” 5. Owen says [9]. It does not appear that those men who are so strenuous for the use of Scripture phrases only in articles of religion. and that he is the "only begotten of the Father". as the experience of all ages testify. if only they are to declare their sense of things in the bare words of Scripture? 4. as it would be unlawful to speak or write otherwise than in the words of Scripture.

it is unreasonable to require them to part with them. they may be lawfully made use of. whereby they seek to obscure and weaken it. Col 2:9 "Person". and the rather since the Arians were the first that began to make use of unscriptural phrases. though not literally expressed in scripture. by the name of God. as "nature". the use of which have long obtained in the churches of Christ. but there was a time when he was not a Father.e. i. words and phrases. that God was not always a Father. as the "imputation of Adam’s sin" to his posterity. 8 . coins new doctrines.e. "I am what I am". and God is well pleased with it: and these are the principal words and phrases objected to. who introduced a phrase subversive of it. one would think they never read the Scriptures at all. but was made out of things that were not. that Christ was "from non-entities". as to the use of it in this subject. it is easy to observe that these men. or very little. or those of the same cast with them. are substituted in their room. and others. Cicero. sacred truths. And indeed. which is notorious in the case of Arius. yet if what is meant by them is to be found there. but "Corpus" vel "systema" vel "medulla Theologiae". without scripture. and the person of Christ. it may be proper to consider the signification and use of the word. nova gignit dogmata". and that the Word was not always. of Christ’s to them that believe. in all those places where it is signified that what Christ has done and suffered in the room and stead of his people is to the content of law and justice. and the sense of them. as the Socinians and Remonstrants have for the use of the word "acceptilation". a body or system or marrow of Divinity. 1Jo 5:7 the "generation" of the Son by and of the Father. and endeavour to support it by making use of unscriptural words and phrases. by imputation. which are used in treating of that doctrine. and such as are proposed should not be easily admitted without strict examination. Joh 10:30 a "Trinity" of Persons in the unity of Essence. for there is oftentimes a good deal of truth in that saying. The Athanasians had as good a right to use the word omoousios as the Arians omoioousios. carry on their cause. who "was made sin". the person of the Father. Words and phrases. also owns that the inspired writings never used such phrases. Joh 1:14.e.18 and others respecting some peculiar doctrines of revelation. and others clearly signified. what we call "Divinity". or produced by them in their writings. calling it [15]. and from whence it has its rise. and what might serve to disgrace their more refined writings. from things that are not. more frequently Seneca. he says. and serve aptly to convey the sense of those that use them. 2Co 2:10. and therefore it is not with a very good grace that such men. a body or system or marrow of Theology. unless others. of these some are plainly expressed. 2Co 4:6. as Athanasius affirms [12]. and the Calvinists have as good authority to make use of the word "satisfaction" in the doctrine of expiation of sin and atonement for it. Ps 2:7. is well known. 2Co 5:21. a favourer of his. his Bishop charged him with saying. and it looks as if they thought it very impolite. concerning the state of men and the grace of Christ. to fill their performances with them: and after all. and thereby explain their sense and defend their doctrine concerning the person of Christ. he that coins new words. Ga 4:8 "Godhead". Heb 1:3. for not only Alexander [13]. which is nearly syllabically expressed in Ro 4:6 and the "imputation" of sin to Christ. a Treatise on the science of divine things. and Christian doctrines. we need not scruple the use of it. en pote ote ouk en. i. peculiar to us.judgment of them by their sermons and writings. i. and what was never said before. from whence our word Divinity comes. The word "Divinitas". object to the use of words and phrases not syllabically expressed in Scripture. and that there was a time when he was not a Son: but Eusebius [14]. Ex 3:14 the "unity" of divine persons in it. tyhlah vel twhlah tmkx "a Science of Divinity". to signify. and the Socinians more lately. The subject of the following Work being "Theology". as "essence". kai to. as some respecting the doctrine of the Trinity. The Jews seem to come nearest to us in the phrase which they use concerning it. since they make such an infrequent use of them: you shall scarcely hear a passage of Scripture quoted by them in a sermon. to ex ouk ontwn. for it seems to be a word. "qui fingit nova verba. against the latter. phrases. Ro 5:19 and the "imputation of righteousness". and his equality with God. I say. was made out of nothing. And the "satisfaction" of Christ for sin. they had never been used to. and that "there was a time when he was not". or what we call Divinity. and those better words and phrases. when used on this subject. is only used by Latin writers for Deity or Godhead. and which we shall not be prevailed upon to part with easily. foreign writers never entitle their works of this kind. but since custom and use have long fixed the sense of the word among us. taken out of the scriptures. "Corpus" vel "systema" vel "medulla Divinitatis". as the Arians formerly.

to his proper Deity. and Preserver 9 . but says. that God is eternal. The first they call tyvarb hvem the work of Bereshith or the creation. though some make Museus the son of Eumolphus. even his eternal power and Godhead. they frequently use it to signify the whole work of the creation. is one that understands. it appears that "Theology". or "Divinity". and other cabalistic writings. by way of eminence. It is from hence now that these words "Theology" and "Theologues" have been borrowed. as will be seen hereafter and here. the λογος. Lantantius says [17]. a Science or doctrine concerning divine things. nor should they be thought the worse of for their original. "John the Evangelist and Divine. it is "the Revelation of the holy Apostle and Evangelist." In the Complutensian edition. that there are three Persons in the Godhead. which book some have observed contains a complete body of Divinity. that there is but one God. and may be called their "metaphysics" or "supernatural Theology". John the Divine. the distinction of the Jewish Theology. in his account of the sacred writings. and who often in his writings speaks of the "Theologues" [22]. and the nature of them whereby the invisible things of God. or a "Divine". the most ancient writers of Greece were called "Theologues". which is the more abstruse and mysterious part of their Theology. and so in the King of Spain’s Bible. the "Theologues" of Delphos. the first of this sort [20].or a "divine Science". that God is the Triune God. in following ages. and that a "Theologue". and Holy Spirit. and this character was given to Plato. and this is their "physics" or "natural Theology". divine Sonship. the father of Xerxes. the essential Word of God. and signifies a discourse concerning God and things belonging to him. concerning his divinity and things belonging to him and which. as distinct from naturalists. so Thales says [18]. for so the inscription of the book runs "the Revelation of St. concerning God. are discerned. is the same as to sense with the word "Theology". and distinct personality. and perhaps the Evangelist John might have this title eminently given to him by the ancients. Pythagoras. hence he had the name of "Theologue" [19]. in the main. these were their poets who wrote of their Deities. and Athanasius [29]. calls the book of the Revelation. or the two parts into which they divide it. Suidas [30] not only calls him the Divine and the Evangelist. which appellation is taken from the vision in Eze 1:1-28 of the four living creatures in the form of a chariot. Son. and Porphyry [21]. which they communicated to Darius. in his letter to him. as it should seem from hence." These words "Theologue" and "Theology". that is." Whether this word "Theologue" or "Divine". the disciple of Pherecydes. and so the word "Theologue". discourses. and seems to design by them the poets. with great propriety. also Aristotle [23] makes mention of the "Theologues". of discourses concerning the true God. and things belonging to him. and so had the Magi and the Chaldeans. "In the beginning God created". Upon the whole. The first among Christians that has the title of "Theologue". for though these words are used of false deities. or a discoursing and treating of things relating to him. but this may be said. and not angels. or "Divine". the writer of the book of the Revelation. and that he only is to be worshipped. But to go on. Here we are taught the divine authority and excellency of the sacred scriptures. and the record he bore to Christ. of whom Democritus is said to learn Theology and Astrology [26]. "Theology" is a Greek word. it was first in use among the heathen poets and philosophers. John. for Bereshith being the first word in Ge 1:1. it follows not but that they may be used. Father. The other branch is called hbkrm hvem the "work of the chariot" [16]. or the natural philosophers. and I see no impropriety in the use of them. that he wrote "Theology". and Cicero [24] also speaks of them. the Creator. gives to John the title of the Divine. are to be met with frequently in the ancient Fathers. and made use of by Christian writers. and of persons that treat of them. a very early Christian writer. others give the title to Orpheus. as in the Book of Zohar. before we proceed any further. no more than other words which come from the same source. has also this character. it may not be improper to observe. of the Messiah. is St. as the apostle says. John the Divine. and of his divine attributes. and of the genealogies of them. as we call it. was originally in the inscription of this book. and which treats of God. The priests of Delphos are called by Plutarch [27]. "the Revelation of John the Divine. of Angels. calls him "the Theologue". so that this part of their Theology respects the creatures God has made. I will not say." and who also styles him. because of his writing concerning. is no other than a science or doctrine concerning God. and of those that discourse of them. or the authors of mystic Theology. by which he seems to mean the book of the Revelation. that Origen [28]. and in all Christian writers to the present times. The Egyptians had their Theology [25]. Pherecydes is said to be the first that wrote of divine things. and treats of divine things. and the souls of men.

that he is Prophet. of his nature and attributes. by which something of God may be known by them.of all things. and the formation of Eve from him. the order and manner of it. or as in him and his posterity since the fall. by positive precepts relating to the worship of God. and secure him from his justice. what knowledge they have of God is very dim and obscure. and it was capable of being increased by things without. And as we are upon this subject. he lost much of his knowledge of God. without God in the world. and without which he could have had no true knowledge of God. if happily they may feel after him. that Christ is truly God and truly man. they appear to be in the same case and circumstances. they are without the true knowledge of the worship of God. as well as in righteousness and holiness. descending from him by ordinary generation. who grope about. with other things respecting the worship of God. These. But this kind of Theology appeared with a different aspect in Adam after his fall. but in it he was assisted. even his eternal power and Godhead. that she was flesh of his flesh. which does not amount to a true knowledge of God. and the covenant made with him as a federal head to all his posterity that should spring from him. of a Trinity of persons who were concerned in the creation of all things. had great knowledge of things. as by symbols. or. of his mind and will. What a notion must he have of the omnipresence of God? and what also of his omniscience. without any true knowledge of him. and in his posterity. and that they are justified and washed from their sins in his blood. when he attempted to palliate and cover his sin by the excuse he made? And he immediately lost his familiar intercourse with God. no doubt. and not to have the image of God upon them. and through a constant and diligent contemplation of the works of creation: nor can we suppose him to be altogether without the benefit and advantage of divine Revelation. and is attained unto through the use and exercise of it. &c. they are alienated from the life of God. and the worship of him. 10 . and some things he could not have known without it: as the creation of the world. he had knowledge of the persons in God. moral and civil. or "supernatural". and was designed of God to be his wife. the articles of the resurrection of the dead. since he had such a near and immediate intercourse and converse with God himself. yet whatever they know of him in theory. and fellowship with him. the sad estate of the wicked. by sin his mind was greatly beclouded. the tree of life in the midst of the garden. which image lay in knowledge. with many other things. before he came short of this glory. yea. Divinity. and find him. and serve the creature more than the Creator. which is come at by divine Revelation. and an helpmeet to him. which is from the light of nature. and bone of his bone. he was created in the image of God. and who should be the mother of all living. or at least was greatly impaired and obliterated in him by sin. Theology may be considered either as "natural". and of his perfections. before the fall. they glorify him not as God. polytheism and atheism: being without a divine Revelation. and what ridiculous notions have they entertained of Deity? and what gods have they reigned for themselves? and have fallen into impiety and idolatry. as the prohibition to eat of the tree of knowledge of good and evil. "Natural" Theology may be considered either as it was in Adam before the fall. from the beginning of it to the present time. and miserable. he knew much of God. and his understanding darkened. it may not be amiss if we take a brief compendious view of the state of Theology. and King. and communion with him. the institution of marriage. that men are by nature wretched. that some of all nations are redeemed by the blood of the Lamb. blind. Adam. and lost this image. and in his own. and the happiness of the saints may be observed in it. divine as well as natural. they are without a practical knowledge of him. and obedience to his will. being drove out of the garden: and as for his posterity. his own formation out of the dust of the earth. the last judgment. or he could never have imagined that going among the trees of the garden would hide him from the presence of God. and though there are some remains of the light of nature in them. &c. nor have yielded the worship due to each divine person: not that all the knowledge he had was innate. they appear to be in the image of the earthly and sinful Adam. Priest. naked. and the manner of it. or sprung from the light of nature within himself. and their understandings darkened as to the knowledge of divine and spiritual things. they are like persons in the dark. poor. if you please. by considering the works of creation. or else be inexcusable. Adam had immediate knowledge of from God himself.

signified by slain beasts. and become a partaker of the flesh and blood of those he was to save: and this seems to be understood by our first parents. as some choose to render the word. for though by it men may arrive to the knowledge of a God as the Creator of all things. "Supernatural" Theology. and what to be performed. The state of this Theology may be considered as it was from the first appearance of it. wherefore the light of nature is insufficient to salvation. and hence they are said to be "justified by blood": and to which may be added the hieroglyphic of the cherubim and flaming sword. &c. the cause of it. Likewise the sufferings and death of Christ in the human nature. and clothes them with. as the incarnation of the Messiah. nor have they any knowledge of his way of justifying sinners by the righteousness of his Son. they can have no assurance that God will pardon sin and sinners. or throughout the old world. for if by obedience to the law of Moses none are justified and saved. What gave rise unto it. When the Messiah. destroy his works. would turn himself. and Jesus Christ whom he has sent. But of the weakness and insufficiency of natural Theology to instruct men in the knowledge of divine things." There is no saving knowledge of God without Christ. as they say. the son of Seth. and thou shalt bruise his heel": these words contain the principal articles of Christian Theology. who should be "the seed of the woman". through his gracious act of imputation. and death. according to the Cabalists [31]. from the coats of skin the Lord God made and clothed our first parents with. "by faith" in the sacrifice 11 . an emblem of the justifying righteousness of Christ. eternal wrath. and of the garments of salvation wrought out by his obedience. like a serpent. and what means and ways to make use of to recommend themselves to him. and therefore have gone into practices the most shocking and detestable. his inferior nature. This kind of Theology received some further improvement. he. afterwards was expected to be the Redeemer of the world. placed at the end of the garden. wound him in his human nature. being placed and appointed to show unto men the way of salvation by Christ the tree of life. there is no pardon but by his blood.and therefore have introduced strange and absurd modes of worship. representing the prophets of the Old. the Saviour of men. to observe or point at the tree of life. confound his schemes. as Enos. and abolish that. who had the power of death. when the Theology of the Pagans may be observed. or what is by pure Revelation. and particularly that which was offered up by Abel. may be next considered. ruin. reckoning such things to be no sins which are grievous ones. perhaps more may be said hereafter. "for this is life eternal. yet not to the knowledge of Christ as the Saviour of men. to the flood in the times of Noah. by means of the serpent Satan. Being destitute of a divine Revelation. offended with them for their sins. and what agreeable to him. and the apostles and ministers of the New Testament. "I have gotten a man the Lord". and his righteousness. and so can have no true knowledge of God in Christ. as fornication. sufferings. by giving full satisfaction for it. suicide. polygamy. are the sacrifices ordered to be offered up. as well as are at a loss what methods to take to reconcile God. they do not in their practice answer to their knowledge of them. and damnation. made flesh. which are doctrines of pure Revelation: they can have no knowledge of Christ as Mediator. in which knowledge they are yet deficient. of life and salvation by him. destroy him himself. And what serves to throw more light on this evangelical Theology. treading on whom. "the man". and so save and deliver his people from all the sad effects of it. they could not be saved by them. and of the way of peace and reconciliation. by his sufferings and death. made of a woman. none can be saved without faith in Christ. saying. destitute of a divine revelation. to know the only true God. is what God pronounced to the serpent: "It (the seed of the woman) shall bruise thy head. and did they. no acceptance with God but through him: things that the light of nature leaves men strangers to. and therefore was called Enos. yet even in the things they do know. and is the foundation of it. after the fall of Adam. the famous excellent man. and which God puts upon his people. yea. who. hence it is thought that Eve imagined that this illustrious person was born of her. then certainly not by obedience to the law and light of nature. or has met with checks and obstructions. in its original rise and progress. the devil. when at any time sensible thereof. would "bruise" his "head". and which were types of the sacrifice of Christ. and as it has been improved and increased. and bite his heel. called his heel. when she brought forth her firstborn. and without faith in him there can be no salvation: and though men may by means of it know in some instances what is displeasing to God. and make an end of sin. and so bring him to the dust of death. what to be avoided.

and pointed at the Lamb of God. where the sons of Japheth. Some indeed have pretended [33] that in the days of Enos images were invented. when the fountains of the great deep were broken up below. that he instructed and commanded his children. God was the Lord of Shem. and of the acceptance of it to God. and of the immoveableness of the covenant of his peace with them. taught and proselyted the men. and may assure of the everlasting love of God to his people. for he was a "preacher of righteousness". "offered up a more excellent sacrifice than Cain". and his household after him. the firstling of his flock. according to them. and as life from the dead. in the times of Noah. and to do justice and judgment.of Christ. and families becoming more numerous. "the like figure". wicked Cain. and Sarah the women: however. According to the Jews [36] Shem had a divinity school. which also was a lamb. partly in the ministry of the word by him. as the Shiloh. which is to him of a sweet smelling savour. and it is said. who were the cause of the flood. that in the times of Jared. Ge 5:29 however. and. and as persons buried. and professed by him. Ga 3:8 there is no doubt but that he preached it to others. which. or disciple. the grandson of Adam. even of evangelical righteousness. Prayer to God. Moreover. who expected [34] great comfort from him. yet there does not appear to have been any corruption in doctrine and worship. in the times of Moses. "even baptism. the ordinance of baptism. and took of their daughters for wives. they now met and joined together in carrying on social and public worship: and though there were corruptions in practice. the 12 . servant. Adam. and so had Abraham in the land of Canaan. dwelt. as to the worship of God. the Apostle says. it was like a resurrection. 1Pe 3:21 likewise the rainbow. the token of the covenant. by the resurrection of Jesus Christ" signified thereby. where. were. the son of Noah. it is said [39]. yet of kindness and preservation. Within this period of time men seem to have increased in light. by which men are saved: for Noah and his family going into the ark. and when they came out of it. from whence sprung a race of giants and wicked men. as it was received from the first man. becoming proselytes. in the valley. had such a school. and resurrection of Christ. Noah was instructed in it by his father Lamech. Ge 18:19. in whom all nations of the earth would be blessed. to the giving of the law to Israel. and the knowledge of it conveyed to his posterity. as it is called. and his three hundred trained servants are supposed to be his catechumens. burial. as some think. the Mediator of the covenant of grace. to the company of Cain. separate from the posterity of Seth. where Jacob [38] was a minister. who should spring from him. to excite the minds of creatures to pray to God by them as mediators. Moreover. and which continued to the times of Isaac. and mixed themselves with them. and Pseudo-Berosus says [32]. indulging themselves in the gratification of sinful pleasures. to contain his earnest desire that he might be the Redeemer of men. owned. which is an emblem of the death. In the line of Shem. but this is said without any foundation. but men increasing.10. which were of clean creatures he had knowledge of the distinction of. or antitype "whereunto". and who set a bad example to his posterity. where Abraham. and he was the father of all the children of Eber. for in the times of Enos. known. and were typical of the purity of Christ’s sacrifice for sin. no doubt. for he is reported to go thither to pray for Rebecca [37]. is from the flood. and which sacrifices were of a sweet savour to God. and as he had knowledge of the Messiah. and the windows of heaven opened above. was an emblem of peace and reconciliation by Christ. the waters of the flood. and the ark in which Noah and his family were preserved. as the gospel was preached unto Abraham. and immersed in it. they were like persons covered in water. However. though not the covenant of grace. whose works were evil. of which he was an heir. and it was taught by Noah. this we are sure of. and who saw his day and was glad. or any idolatry exercised. and invocation of his name. doth also now save us. he instructed him in the true religion. who by his sacrifice takes away the sins of his people. that Ham lived a very vicious and profligate life before the flood. within this period of time. the water being carried off. Isa 54:9. "of the righteousness of faith". he and they lived together. so his grandson Jacob had a more dear and distinct view of him. as God’s salvation. Eber also. especially public worship. Lamech gave into the practice of bigamy. The next period of time in which supernatural Theology may be traced. some descended from the holy mountain. and therefore no doubt preached the same to others: and partly by the sacrifices he offered. to keep the way of the Lord. were a type of an evangelical ordinance. in spiritual as well as in civil things. and also in Haran. men "began to call upon the name of the Lord". the knowledge of this kind of Theology was continued: Noah’s blessing of him is thought by the Cabalists [35]. used before.

and the idolatries committed in the times of Ahaz. by the hand of Moses. by the idolatry of the calf at Sinai. There were some sad revolts from the true God.5 19:25. the brazen serpent.26 33:23. as the passover. the father of Abraham. and bring in a righteousness answerable to it: Moses wrote of Christ. the sufferings he should undergo. They plainly describe him in his person. in the reigns of some of the kings of Israel and Judah. and their work and office. of the perfections of God. his grace and righteousness. and justification by him. Naioth in Ramah is interpreted [41] an house of doctrine. Idolatry within this period first began among the builders of Babel: some say in the days of Serug [40]. to the Babylonish captivity. to be made by the sacrifice of Christ: the whole ceremonial law.peace maker and prosperous one.5 4:38 in such a college or house of instruction. and offices. as the evil nature of sin. it was embraced by the Zabians in Chaldea. even in the times of Elijah and Elisha. and Jericho and Gilgal. of the impurity of human nature. and the annual sacrifices on the day of atonement. which issued in the captivities of both people.24. and benefits arising from them. and to what make him. within this compass of time. before civil government was removed from the Jews. 1Sa 2:1-10 very clearly speak of the perfections of God. and when come. or school of instruction. to fulfil the law. as the Targum. of Baalpeor. and session at the right hand of God. 2Ki 22:14. and led the faith of men to the expiation of sins. necessary to salvation. either by type or prophecy: the song of Moses in De 32:1-52 and of Hannah. in Arabia. of his prophetic. particularly the daily sacrifice morning and evening. and a little before their coming out of it. of his burial. indeed. and kingly offices. after the death of Joshua. and on which many blessings of grace depend. it is plain they had great knowledge of God and divine things. were typical of. And the prophets which followed him speak out still more clearly of the incarnation of Christ. Manasseh. As for Job and his three friends. There were within this time some checks to the true knowledge and worship of God. priestly. and obtained in the family of Terah. and the circumstances of them. many intimations are given of the sufferings and death of Christ. Huldah. and to an acquaintance with the things of Christ. 1Sa 19:18. The Psalms of David are full of spiritual and evangelic knowledge. and of the Messiah. kings of Judah. it was the Jews’ gospel. on the borders of Moab. The period from the times of David including them. and his worship. who do not appear to have given into the idolatry of that people. who should come. Ge 49:10-18. According to the Jews. and in the times of the Judges. and doctrines of supernatural Theology. and others of the kings of Israel. all that related to the priests. teaching and instructing them. resurrection from the dead. of the insufficiency of man’s righteousness to justify him before God. and salvation by him: and by the sacrifices instituted. and making satisfaction for it: in short. the insufficiency of men to make atonement for it. and other things. to the times of David and the prophets. the great apostle Paul himself said no other things than what the prophets did. their garments. The period from the Babylonish captivity to the times of Christ. and of his bearing sin. there was a divinity school in the times of Samuel. the manna. Job 14:4 25:4. where the sons or disciples of the prophets were trained up in the knowledge of divine things. of his works of providence and grace. and of the doctrine of redemption and salvation by Christ. which besides all others. to the illumination of those that sat in darkness. and Amon. The worship of the sun and moon prevailed in the times of Job. and of Baalim and Ashtaroth and other deities. The next period is from the giving of the law to Israel. the prophetess dwelt at Jerusalem. had an evangelical signification. where he stood over the prophets. abounds with evangelic truths. and which led them to Christ. which were emblems of Christ and his grace. and. finish the Old Testament dispensation. ascension to heaven. point out the very place where he was to be born.19 Such schools there were in later times. of which Samuel was president. a scheme of evangelic truths may be deduced from the prophetic writings. they bear witness to the doctrines of pardon of sin through him. as the idolatry of the calves in the reign of Jeroboam. multitudes should be gathered to him. At 13 . who lived about the time of the children of Israel being in Egypt. in which supernatural Theology was taught by types. which could never have been known but by divine revelation. at Bethel. and the country where he would preach the gospel. 2Ki 2:3.

the return of the Jews from captivity, who brought no idolatrous worship with them, there was a reformation made by Ezra and Nehemiah, with the prophets of their time; or who quickly followed, as Haggai, Zachariah, and Malachi; who all prophesied of Christ the Saviour, and of the salvation that should come by him; with the several blessings of it; and speak of his near approach, and point at the time of his coming, and the work he should do when come. But after the death of these prophets, and the Holy Spirit departed, and there was no more prophecy, supernatural Theology began greatly to decline; and the truths of revelation were neglected and despised; and the doctrines and traditions of men were preferred to the word of God, that was made of none effect by them. The sect of the Sadducees, a sort of free thinker, rose up; who said there was no resurrection, nor angel, nor spirit: and the sect of the Pharisees, a sort of free willers, who set up traditions as the rule of mens’ worship, and which rose to an enormous bigness in the times of Christ, who severely inveighed against them; and which in later times were compiled and put together in a volume, called, the "Misnah", their "Traditional", or Body of Traditions: and this, in course of time, occasioned a large work finished in Babylon and from thence called the "Babylonian Talmud"; which is their "Doctrinal", or Body of Doctrine; full of fables, false glosses and interpretations of scriptures; and which is the foundation of the erroneous doctrines and practices of the Jews to this day. And here I shall take leave to transcribe the interpretation of the vision in Zec 5:6-11. given by that learned man. George Eliezer Edzard [42], it being very ingenious and uncommon, and much to our present purpose. This learned man observes that the preceding vision of the "flying roll", describes the sad corruption of manners among the Jews, in the three or four former ages of the second temple; doctrine remaining pretty sound among them; which corruption of manners was punished by the incursions of the Lagidae and Seleucidae, kings of Egypt and Syria, into Judea, as the vision represents. The following vision of a woman sitting in an Ephah, and shut up in it, and then transported by two other women into the land of Shinar; he thus interprets: by the "woman", who, by way of eminency, is called "wickedness"; is to be understood the impious and false doctrine devised by the Pharisees and Sadducees; and other corrupt doctors of the Jews in the latter times of the second temple, and handed down to posterity; compared to a woman, because it had nothing manly, nothing true, nothing solid in it; and moreover, caused its followers to commit spiritual fornication, and allured to it by its paints, flatteries, and prittle prattle: and it is called "wickedness" because not only the less fundamentals, but the grand fundamentals, and principal articles of faith, concerning the mystery of the Trinity, the Deity of the Son of God, and of the holy Spirit, the person and office of the Messiah, were sadly defiled by it; and in the room of them were substituted, traditions, precepts, and inventions of men; than which greater impiety cannot be thought of; and which issued in the contempt and rejection and crucifixion of the Messiah, sent as the Saviour of the world; and in the persecution of the preachers of the gospel, and putting a stop to the course of it, as much as could be; and which drew with it a train of other sins. The Ephah, he thinks, designs the whole body of the people of the Jews, throughout Judea, Samaria, and Galilee; which Ephah was first seen as "empty", Zec 5:6 and this being a dry measure, with which wheat and such like things were measured, the food of the body, a proper type of the heavenly doctrine, the food of the soul: by the emptiness of the Ephah, is intimated, that sound doctrine, about the time of the Messiah’s coming, would be banished out of Judea, and the neighbouring parts; and most of the inhabitants thereof would be destitute of the knowledge of the pure faith. And the wicked woman "sitting in the midst of the Ephah", and filling it, not a corner of it, but the whole; and is represented not as lying prostrate, but sitting; denotes the total corruption of doctrine, its power and prevalence, throughout Judea, Samaria, and Galilee; obtaining in all places, synagogues, schools, and seats, and pulpits, and among all sorts of inhabitants; the few being crushed who professed the sound doctrine of the Trinity, and of the person and office of the Messiah. And whereas a "talent of lead" was seen "lifted up"; this signifies the divine decree concerning the destruction of the Jews and their polity by the Romans; which should be most surely executed on them, for their corruption of doctrine, and for sins that flowed from thence. The "lifting" up of the talent not only prefigured the near approach of the judgment, but the setting it before the eyes of the people, to be beheld through the ministry of Christ, and his apostles, before it was executed; that while there was hope, if it might be, some might be brought to repentance, and to the acknowledgment of the true Messiah; but this failing of success, the talent was "cast into the ephah", and


upon the woman in it, signifying the destruction of the Jews; of which the angel that talked with Zachariah the prophet, and who was no other than the Son of God, was the principal author; Vespasian, and the Roman army under him, being only ministers and instruments. Not that hereby the woman, or the corrupt doctrine, was wholly extinguished; but it was depressed, and weakened, and reduced, and was among a few only, great numbers of the doctors and disciples of it being slain, and many of both classes being exiled; the temple and city burnt, heretofore the chief seat of it, and the schools throughout Judea destroyed, in which it was propagated. But in process of time the Jews restored some schools in Palestine, as at Jabneh, Zippore, Caesarea, and Tiberias, in the last of which R. Judah Hakkadosh compiled the "Misnah", about A. D. 150. and after that came out the "Jerusalem Talmud", A. D. 230. and. after the death of the above Rabbi, his chief disciples went into Babylon, and carried with them the greatest part of the doctors and their scholars out of Palestine: so that doctrine by little and little disappeared in Judea, and entirely about the year 340, when R. Hillell died, the last of those promoted doctors in the land of Israel: and after this scarce anything was heard of the schools and wise men of Palestine; but schools continued in Babylon for many ages; and this is what is meant, in the last part of the symbolic vision of Zechariah, by the Ephah being carried by two women into the land of Shinar, that is, Babylon: by these "two women" are meant the Misnic and Gemaristic doctors; the two heads of which were Raf and Samuel, who went into Babylon a little after the death of R. Judah, the saint, and carried the woman, false doctrine, along with them, these are said to have" wings like storks", fit for long journeys, to fly with on high, and with swiftness, into remote parts; and fitly describes the above persons transporting their fals A Body of Doctrinal Divinity Book 1—Chapter 1 Of the Being of God

Having undertaken to write a System of Theology, or a Body of Doctrinal Divinity; and Theology being nothing else than a speaking of God, or a discoursing concerning him; his nature, names, perfections, and persons; his purposes, providences, ways, works, and word: I shall begin with the Being of God, and the proof and evidence of it; which is the foundation of all religion; for if there is no God, religion is a vain thing; and it matters not neither what we believe, nor what we do; since there is no superior Being to whom we are accountable for either faith or practice. Some, because the being of God is a first principle, which is not to be disputed; and because that there is one is a self-evident proposition, not to be disproved; have thought it should not be admitted as a matter of debate: but since such is the malice of Satan, as to suggest the contrary to the minds of men; and such the badness of some wicked men as to listen to it, and imbibe it; and such the weakness of some good men as to be harassed and distressed with doubts about it at times; it cannot be improper to endeavour to fortify our minds with reasons and arguments against such suggestions and insinuations. And my 1. First argument to prove the Being of a God, shall be taken from the general consent of men of all nations, in all ages of the world; among whom the belief of it has universally obtained; which it is not reasonable to suppose would have obtained, if it was not true. This has been observed by many heathen writers themselves. Aristotle says, "all men have a persuasion of Deity, or that there is a God." Cicero observes, "There is no nation so wild and savage, whose minds are not imbued with the opinion of the gods; many entertain wrong notions of them; but all suppose and own the divine power and nature." And in another place he says, "There is no animal besides man that has any knowledge of God; and of men there is no nation so untractable and fierce, although it may be ignorant what a God it should have, yet is not ignorant that one should be had." And again, "It is the sense of all mankind, that it is "innate" in all, and is, as it were, engraven on the mind, that there is a God; but what a one he is, in that they vary; but that he is, none denies." And to the same sense are the words of Seneca, "There never was a nation so dissolute and


abandoned, so lawless and immoral, as to believe there is no God." So Aelianus relates, "None of the barbarous nations ever fell into atheism, or doubted of the gods whether they were or not, or whether they took care of human affairs or not; not the Indians, nor the Gauls, nor the Egyptians." And Plutarch has these remarkable words, "If you go over the earth, says he, you may find cities without walls, letters, kings, houses, wealth, and money, devoid of theatres and schools; but a city without temples and gods, and where is no use of prayers, oaths, and oracles, nor sacrifices to obtain good or avert evil, no man ever saw." These things were observed and said, when the true knowledge of God was in a great measure lost, and idolatry prevailed; and yet even then, this was the general sense of mankind. In the first ages of the world, men universally believed in the true God, and worshipped him, as Adam and his sons, and their posterity, until the flood; nor does there appear any trace of idolatry before it, nor for some time after. The sins which caused that, and with which the world was filled, seem to be lewdness and uncleanness, rapine and violence. Some think the tower of Babel was built for an idolatrous use; and it may be that about that time idolatry was set up; as it is thought to have prevailed in the days of Serug: and it is very probable that when the greater part of the posterity of Noah’s sons were dispersed throughout the earth, and settled in the distant parts of it; that as they were remote from those among whom the true worship of God was preserved; they, by degrees, lost sight of the true God, and forsook his worship; and this being the case, they began to worship the sun in his stead, and which led on to the worship of the moon, and the host of heaven; which seem to be the first objects of idolatry. This was as early as the times Job, who plainly refers to it, (Job 31:26, 27). And, indeed, when men had cast off the true object of worship, what more natural to substitute in his room than the sun, moon, and stars, which were above them, visible by them, and so glorious in themselves, and so beneficial to the earth and men on it? Hence the people of Israel were exhorted to take care that their eyes were not ensnared at the sight of them, to fall down and worship them; and which in later times they did (Deut. 4:19; 2 King 21:3). It appears also that men took very early to the deifying of their heroes after death, their kings, and great personages, either for their wisdom and knowledge, or for their courage and valour, and martial exploits, and other things; such were the Bel, or Belus, of the Babylonians; the Baalpeor of the Moabites. ;and the Molech of the Phoenicians, and other Baalim lords, or kings, mentioned in the Scriptures: and such were Saturn, Jupiter, Mars, Mercury, Hercules; and the rest of the rabble of the heathen deities; and indeed their Lares, and Penates, or household gods, were no other than the images of their deceased parents, or more remote ancestors, whose memory they revered; and in process of time their deities became very numerous; they had gods many and lords many: even with the Jews, when fallen into idolatry, their gods were according to the number of their cities (Jer. 2:28). And as for the Gentiles, they worshipped almost everything; not only the sun, moon, and stars; but the earth, fire, and water; and various sorts of animals, as oxen, goats, and swine, cats and dogs, the fishes of the rivers, the river horse, and the crocodile, those amphibious creatures; the fowls of the air, as the hawk, stork, and ibis; and even insects, the fly; yea, creeping things, as serpents, the beetle, &c.; as also vegetables, onions, and garlic; which occasioned the satirical poet to say, "O sanctas gentes quibus haec nascuntur in hortis, numina!" O holy nations, whose gods are born in their gardens! Nay, some have worshipped the devil himself, as both in the East and West Indies; and that for this reason, that he might not harm them. Now though all this betrays the dreadful depravity of human nature; the wretched ignorance of mankind; and the sad stupidity men were sunk into; yet at the same time such shocking idolatry, in all the branches of it, is a full proof of the truth and force of my argument, that all men, in all ages and countries, have been possessed of the notion of a God; since, rather than to have no God, they have chosen false ones; so deeply rooted is a sense of Deity in the minds of all men. I am sensible that to this it is objected, that there have been, at different times, and in different countries, some particular persons who have been reckoned atheists, deniers of the Being of a God. But some of these men were only deriders of the gods of their country; they mocked at them as unworthy of the name, as weak and insufficient to help them; as they reasonably might; just as Elijah mocked at Baal and his worshippers. Now the common people, because they so behaved towards their gods, looked upon them as atheists, as such who did not believe there was any God. Others were so accounted, because they excluded the gods from any concern with human affairs; they thought they were other ways employed, and that


that there is now and then an idiot born of his race. being contrary to the common sense of mankind. and the most degenerate of the human species. the further they were removed from more wise and civilised nations. we have enough of them in our own nation. and also from their anxious solicitude about the state after death. that some have thought that man should rather be defined as a religious than a rational animal. And at most this only shows how much the reason of man may be debased. wicked. and offer sacrifice of the best things they have. by conversing with them. and I was just ready to say. The Hottentots about the Cape of Good Hope have been instanced in. who 17 . without being accountable to a superior Being. but the Supreme Being is seen in everything. and concerning spirits." Diodorus Siculus says. and irreligious lives. and it is said they pray to a Being that dwells above. though ever so bad. and what one affirms. and his attributes. from the notions they had. "atheists". it is manifest. after all. they are ayeoi. it depends upon the testimonies of travellers. it appears that they have a notion of the sun. as the apostle calls them. who worship God continually. some have boldly asserted their disbelief of a God. yet. says Herbert. which their posterity neglected by little and little. nor so much as any ceremonies to be perceived tending to it: hence the first missionaries entertained a supposition. that there have been whole nations in Africa and America. and not becoming their grandeur and dignity to regard. but they could plainly gather from a free dialogue they had with some perfectly wild Greenlanders. as attested by all antiquity. even as it is no sufficient objection to the definition of man. when. as without any knowledge of Deity: and certainly they are a most beastly and brutish people that can be named. than that the knowledge of the Supreme Being is hidden from them. And not only so. that so they might take their fill of sin. and have survived the common instincts of humanity. (Eph 2:12) they are "without God in the world. at least they have not been able to maintain their unbelief long without some doubts and fears. or from their dissolute. who have no notion of Deity. and had much the same sentiments as some of the Jews had (Eze. or live where they may. But this is what has not been sufficiently proved. they found quite the reverse to be true. which is not destroyed thereby. that "they had neither a religion nor idolatrous worship. And later discoveries of other nations. especially as they had no word to express him by. I take no notice of the holy angels. (Eph 4:18) otherwise there is such a general sense of Deity in mankind. and such a natural inclination to religion. being alienated from the life of God". and familiar acquaintance with them. as the fool in Psalm 14:1. if any. though very vague and various. only of his providence as to the affairs of the world: and others have been rather practical than speculative atheists. which assertions have arose either from want of intimate knowledge of them. but wish in their hearts there was none. till at last they lost every just conception of the Deity. as a rational creature. they appear to have some sense of a Supreme Being. or something or another being a sort of deity. yet. and did render him some service. who not only live as if there was no God. and of inferior deities. But these men were not deniers of the existence of God. The number of real speculative atheists have been very few. with eyes lifted up to heaven. and how low it may sink when left to itself: these few instances are only particular exceptions to a general rule. we need not be sent to Africa and America for such atheists as these. all men in an unregenerate state. Kolben’s account of them. that a faint idea of a divine Being lies concealed in the minds even of this people. without any objection. we are a nation of atheists in this sense: and. though before he had represented them as the first and most religious of all nations. of some sort or another. They express a superstitious joy at new and full moons.such things were below their notice. to the doctrine of a God. "I should rather question. nor of the devils. according to Mr. so not to the general belief of Deity. but it is a question whether their hearts and mouths have agreed." And as to what is concluded from the irreligious lives of the inhabitants of some nations. rather than believe there is none. 1:12). But when they came to understand their language better. since the sun is only conspicuous in its own sphere. It is further objected. so that nothing can with certainty be concluded from them. because they directly assent. 9:9. a few of the Ethiopians were of opinion there was no God. whether the light of the sun has shone on the remotest regions. Thus it has been observed of the Greenlanders. another denies. indeed. published some years ago. that there is now and then an atheist in the world. that there was not the least trace to be found among them of any conception of a divine Being. show the contrary to what has been asserted of them. that their ancestors must have believed a supreme Being. or sky. Zep. be they Jews or Gentiles. concerning the soul. Lord Cherbury.

but from a natural instinct. cannot doubt of this being his case. and detect the fallacy and discover it. If of one. and represents it as a very pestilent one. nor the law of nature entirely obliterated in him." And so likewise Cicero. who have been in the world. as well as man. in their present state. and so had the Gentiles. or from the general instinct in men. Seneca makes use of this to prove there is a God. yet this light of nature is not wholly obscured. it must be the contrivance of one man. destitute of the law of Moses. as soon as he begins to have the exercise of his rational powers. but these are common to all mankind: nor do they spring from a slavish fear and dread of punishment. as observed before. 2:15) which. 2. and is to be proved by it. or are the effects of that originally: if this was the case. and under subjection. (Rom. that is. and where? and what is his name. These notices of a divine Being do not flow from the previous instructions of parents and others. a perfect Being. and free men from the imposition. necessarily supposes the knowledge of him. for what nation. is "implanted" in the minds of all men. yet it furnishes them with such a sense of him. who deny there are any innate ideas in the minds of men. when the inspired apostle assures us. which are so boundless as not to be satisfied. when and where they existed? and who they were that met together? and where they formed this scheme? And let it be accounted for. he thinks and speaks of God. say. inscribed on the heart of every man. and assents to the Being of a God. there must be an object answerable unto them.believe there is one God and tremble. that such a number of sage and wise men. as will be seen in a following argument. or kings or civil magistrates were in being. at most. as it regards duty to God. they are only drawn forth by instruction and teaching. and though man by sinning has greatly come short of this image and glory of God. the Epicurean. or his son’s name? If of more. or impress of Deity on the mind of every man. since he is said to be made in the image. and after the likeness of God. says . as well as of the difference between good and evil. there are some remains of it. that even the Gentiles. "Whom have I in heaven but thee? and there is none on earth my soul desires besides thee" (Ps. if it was the contrivance of politicians to keep men in awe. these notices appeared before any scheme of politics was formed. 18 . as founded upon his nature and will: and though this light of nature is not sufficient to lead men. and particularly concerning God: but to such writers and reasoners I pay but little regard. This follows upon the former. "he adds. "that has not a certain anticipation of it without being taught it. the conclusion of the whole is. "The consent of all nations in anything. and find him". or sort of men. (Acts 17:27). Let a man have ever so great a compass of knowledge and understanding. Under this head may be observed the innate desires of men after happiness. the contrary is true. if it can. who is the first cause and last end of all things. yet after all. as Julian expresses it: nor do these notices take their rise from state policy. and particular nations among them had separate ones from each other. without having the knowledge of him implanted in him. for though it has been said. Besides. and who calls them the notions of Deity implanted and innate. when first created. or possess ever so large a portion of wealth and riches. or enjoy all the pleasure the whole creation can afford him. of whom the Psalmist says. my argument being only concerned with men. according to the wise man. "or before taught it. which is no other than God. And whoever believes the Mosaic account of the creation of man. There are some indeed among us. that no man should be able to get into the secret. or produces a notion of Deity. is to be reckoned the law of nature. "if haply they may feel and grope after him. both in private and in public. for as Cicero says. The second argument shall be taken from the law and light of nature. have "the work of the law written in their hearts". or be indulged with the gratification of his senses to the highest degree. as puts them upon seeking him. "all is vanity and vexation of spirit" (Eccl. "that there is a Deity nature itself has impressed the notion of on the minds of all men. Plato has refuted this notion. or more united together. he says: "because an opinion or sense of Deity. that must be a part of the law of nature. 73:25). that fear makes gods. for the image of God surely could not be impressed upon him. say. 2:17)." And since all nations agree in the belief of a Deity. who is the man? in what age he lived. to a true spiritual and saving knowledge of God. since traditions are peculiar to certain people: the Jews had theirs. Now these desires are not in vain implanted. Nor are these notices by tradition from one to another. Velleius. that Deity produces fear.

(Gen. than of any other creature. indeed. as the apostle observes. for out of nothing. "as soon as ever I heard you speak of this great Being. and what all men received from their ancestors. why does it not still happen that men grow out of the earth? and from whence did this same earth itself. the colour. that all things are of God. they grew out of the earth: but if so. Who was it that made him? I thought myself that he proceeded from his parents. men. out of what was that pre-existent matter made? the answer must be. as that which makes must be before that which is made: it must act and operate before it exists. 1:20). Ah. the Creator." And those that believe the divine revelation. that the most excellent creatures. No creature can produce itself. in answer to a question. but sufficiently confuted by others. the moon. Most admirable was the reasoning of a wild Greenlander. and from the variety of stars about the world. concerning which the apostle says. nothing can be made by that. did I but know him. the sea. which depend upon causes in subordination to one another. asserts. being understood by the things that are made. and that first cause is God. knowing. they have knowledge of beings superior to them? and how is it that they know so little of themselves. and therefore its being must be owing to another cause. since it was by creation. cannot be traced up "ad infinitum". which would be implied. The third argument. does not grow into existence of itself. which furnishes out a variety of objects. than the best "kajak". and other instances. and consist by him. cannot admit of any other doctrine. from the creation of the world. be it. even his eternal power and Godhead" (Rom. The notion of the eternity of the world has been imbibed by some heathens. whom we rightly call God. Now here is an ample field to survey. and all 19 . I believed it directly. and wise. or a Saviour. and. which he declared to a missionary to be the reasoning of his mind before his conversion. this involves such contradictions as can never be admitted. it must be by one that is almighty. is to be concluded from the works of creation. "It is true we were ignorant heathens. He must be very good too. are clearly seen. shall be taken from the works of creation." And these so clearly display the Being and power of God. and no man can make a bird: but there is still a far greater art shown in the formation of a man." he said. besides the above contradictions. and necessary for us. since it is certain. why did not they make themselves wiser and better. is manifest from the figure. useful. but wrought with some art: that the world is beautiful. He must be inexpressibly more mighty. for nothing beautiful is made in vain. Plutarch. but must explode the notion of the eternity of the world. to whom it is ascribed. that the heavens and the earth were made out of a chaos. because that everything that he has made is good. and be and not be at one and the same time. it may be reasonably asked. and knew nothing of God." A glaring proof this. Now the meanest bird has far more skill displayed in its structure. who should tell us of him till you come? but thou must not imagine that no Greenlander thinks about these things. that a supreme Being. 11:3) for. but must be made by the labour and ingenuity of man. and they from their parents. than the wisest man. but out of nothing. he said to him. And even Aristotle. and stars. and one that does not understand it would directly spoil it. O that I could but speak with such! therefore. and as this. that "it was an ancient doctrine. for then a creature must be before it was. arise into existence? Certainly there must be some Being who made all these things. as to leave the heathen without excuse. as sufficiently confute the creature’s making itself. made themselves. show. since that assures us. I myself have often thought: a "kajak" (a boat) with all its tackle and implements. but must be reduced to some first cause. and can never cease to be. or out of pre-existent matter. there is no medium: and if it could be thought or said. and magnitude of it. a Being that always was. out of nothing. proving the Being of God. but some must have been the first parents. the first cause of all things. Heb.3. "not of things which do appear". which is the production of something out of nothing: and which can never be performed by the creature. with all my heart. if both were made by them? and why are they not able to preserve themselves from a dissolution to which they are all subject? It may be further observed. which are such glaring contradictions. it might be asked. whence did they come? common report informs me. and of its being of itself. Whence have men the knowledge of God? replies. how would I love him and honour him! But who has seen him? who has ever conversed with him? None of us poor men. for between a creature and God. If therefore all things are originally produced out of nothing. even to God. Yet there may be men too that know something of him. the sun. because I had so long desired to hear it. that "in the beginning God created the heavens and the earth": also that all things were made. "They first receive the knowledge of him from the beauty of things that appear. "the invisible things of God. either of their bodies or their souls. 1:1. where the inquiry must rest. that effects. nor by chance.

I have no need of thee. the continuance of the vital heat. nor so remote as to be of no use to us. and feeling. are enough to raise the highest admiration in us: as the circulation of the blood through all parts of the body. receive benefit by it. thirst. and all disposed for the use of man. some for strength. and which is sensibly perceived in the several parts of the body. as to be subservient to one another. stored with immense riches in the heart of it. of different forms and shapes. of the whole terraqueous globe. poised with its own weight. There is nothing in the whole creation the mind can contemplate. the stellar space. tasting. an ancient noted physician. marvellous are thy works. many of which are done without our knowledge or will. and labour. its proper distance from us. so many things are brought forth on earth. when considered. some for bearing burdens. the course it has steered. in the days of Joshua. I have no need of you". and on which life much depends. thou art God. the sun and moon. and the accretion and growth of parts by all this. and sea. which supposes a divine Being. but once as is supposed. smelling. which compresses our earth. earth. its form and shape. are most wonderfully fitted for the purposes for which they are made. must acknowledge it to be the work of an all wise and almighty agent. the various sorts of animals. the chylification of it. and for what is this erect posture given him. The inward parts. being not so near us as to scorch us. and every muscle. bespangled with stars of light. peculiar to man. the eye look upon. being atheistically inclined. a motion it has had now almost six thousand years. made. and from whom they expect the other. which are weak and tender. and the innumerable kinds of fishes that swim the ocean. hanging on nothing. which hast made the heaven. in a very small space of time. and keeps it together. to whom they owe the one. but what proclaims the Being of God. at one season or another. as the poet says. In short. The consideration of all this will oblige us to say. guided. the different parts of it. Each of the parts and members of the body are so framed and disposed. and the shape of their bodies. as supplicating deliverance from it. tunics. The various operations performed in our bodies. hearing. and fenced with bones and sinews". the digestion of the food. will oblige us to say. the features of their faces. nor a sand on the shore. the mixing of the chyle with the blood. and directed by his hand alone. Whoever reflects on these things. whose circuit is from one end of the heaven to the other. the slender threads and small fibres spread throughout the body. to behold the heavens. and the faculties of our souls. the respiration of the lungs. and provision for its defence and safety. but these are "clothed with skin and flesh. without varying or erring from it all this while. and all that in them is" (Acts 4:25). so that all parts of the earth. and every nerve. we call God. When we look up to the heavens above us. and there is nothing hid from the heat thereof: when we consider its form. there is not a shell in the ocean. especially the former. by way of thankfulness for it. which outlasts fire itself. the fabric of the body. was convinced of his impiety by barely considering the admirable structure of the eye. and spreading sky. nor any flower of different hue and smell in the garden. and even in the more remote. man has a lofty countenance given him. and under whose benign influences. nor a spire of grass in the field. the air in which we breathe. are put in their proper places. nor the head to the feet. and every bone. the faculty of speech. Galen. in which it has proceeded without stopping. and the organs of it. and virtue. When we take a view of the earth. and others for drawing carriages. which all differ from one another. the surrounding atmosphere. and that my soul knoweth right well": and will 20 . some for swiftness. some for food and others for clothing: the vast variety of the feathered birds that cut the air. with the inspired Psalmist. were they exposed. or are in any great distress. and steers. so that "the eye cannot say to the hand. "Lord. of sight. while other animals look downwards to the earth. The same may be observed of the other members. but to adore his Creator? And it is remarkable that there is a natural instinct in men to lift up their hands and eyes to heaven. to lift up his face to the stars. which having been weakened and enfeebled by hunger. like a ball in the air. when either they have received any unexpected mercy. or the hand lay hold on. and the way it has been guided in. magnitude. the nourishment thereby communicated. the motion given it at first. its various humours. and adorned with the two great luminaries. "I am fearfully and wonderfully made. would be liable to much danger and hurt. are in an instant revived and strengthened. that inexhaustible fountain of light and heat. which hold and perform their office seventy or eighty years running: all which. "os homini sublime dedit Deus". The body. All the organs of the senses. and that it must be upheld. the constant supply of animal spirits. and stocked with inhabitants upon it. To which may be added other things worthy of notice. but what declare the Being of God: but especially our own composition is deserving of our notice.proofs of Deity.

that. manners. And besides this. for the 21 . and so the grand and magnificent building of this world would soon be dissolved. in matters natural. and religious. it can reflect on things past. diligence. for him or against him. can be here and there at pleasure. yet it is capable of being renewed by the spirit of God. Was there not such an almighty Being. or excuse him. it can fancy and imagine things that never were. and which has done it. and from hence arise either peace of mind. he may have enough for himself and family. &c. not only for necessity. did not the divine agent that made it. is made by a divine Being. and describe the situation of every country. the more noble part of him. without any visible appearance of age or decay. As the world. which is a storehouse of collections of things thought to be most valuable and useful. who may. and fetch out. which. the God of all flesh living. customs. and can forecast and provide for things to come: it has a "will". the provision made for the supply of creatures. will accuse him when he does ill. and determines for itself what is right or wrong. with the greatest freedom of choice. but for delight. will fall to decay and ruin. Did he not bear up the pillars of the earth. by instruction or study. more fully discovers the original author of him. for almost six thousand years. with a plenty and variety of all good things. there is the power of invention. The fourth argument will be taken from the sustaining and government of the world. as their case and circumstances may require. of love and hatred. and in a short time. to have recourse unto. and draw conclusions from them: and with judgment. the "soul" of man is that wherein chiefly lay the image and likeness of God. and employment of life. and of having the grace of God implanted in it. to embrace or refuse. and though it is now sadly depraved by sin. either here or hereafter: to which may be added the memory. yea. as we have seen. by which it passes sentence on things it takes cognizance of. business. in others less fertile. and it has entertained a conception of. unless repaired and maintained. which. they would sink and fall. so as to be called for and taken out upon occasion: here men of every character and profession lay up their several stores. there is food provided for them all. and the fishes of the sea. besides men. and reasons upon. 4. every man has a trade. and especially of man. they would tremble and shake. on a sudden. But above all. supplies with what is useful in case of an emergency. and with reason. capable of receiving and framing ideas of all things knowable. where they are laid up. the fowls of the air. But the soul of man. in some shape or another. he is richly provided for. which in some is more. and well built palace. and so either approves or disapproves: it has a "mind" susceptive of what is proposed unto it. and discourse concerning them. with the help of some geographical principles. so he that supports the fabric of the universe must be so too. to observe no more. civil. and. and with the most absolute power and sovereignty: it has affections. can travel over the globe. the Father of spirits. if it performs its office as it should do. the Lord. in a lively manner. being possessed of such powers and faculties that none but God could give: it is endowed with an understanding. and to spare: the earth produces a variety of things for food and drink for him. with great propriety. there is the "fancy or imagination". but orderly manner. and commend. be called. when man was in his pure and innocent state. or dread of punishment. to put these together. what is proposed unto it. and is endowed with immortality.lead us to ascribe this curious piece of workmanship to no other than to the divine Being. &c. and they have "every one their portion of meat in due season": and as for man. and though there is such a vast number of creatures in the world. when he does well. and "the cattle on a thousand hills". keep it up: as he that built all things is God. objects presented to it. so by him it consists. not in a confused. no less than an almighty hand can preserve and continue it. the Jehovah. in the four parts of the world. who "formeth the spirit of man within him". and cannot die: now to whom can such a noble and excellent creature as this owe its original? but to the divine Being. and compare them with each other. cultivate any art or science. which is to a man as a thousand witnesses. and industry. and for his safety. infer one thing from another. and has a foresight of. with care. firm. according to the different objects it is conversant with. with their religion. visit every city of note therein. "who upholds all things by the word of his power". and not be able to bear its weight: the most stately. learn any language. the beasts of the field. and of others for medicine. which can paint and describe to itself. or is put into such a situation and circumstances. joy and grief. it can. hope and fear. to accept or reject. nor never will be: and. There is also the conscience.

before the destruction of Jerusalem. and to the settled laws of it. and generals of armies. prodigies. wonders. who attacked and took a garrison of the same people. and cannot be attributed to anything else than the superintendency of the divine Being. and restrains the lusts of men. which needs them not. and dwell in uninhabited places. with other things. these merit our notice and credit. an heathen historian. and beyond the course of nature. "one man would be a wolf to another". The fifth argument may be taken from the uncommon heroic actions. and lurking places. and had he not put a natural instinct into them to avoid the habitations of men. strange and wonderful events. and fruitful seasons. for which no natural cause can be assigned. and miraculous things done in the world. related by Josephus. all which can never be supposed to be done without superior power. who had been for some time a terror to the whole land of Israel: and of David. and princes decree justice": and particularly. but contrary to it. and laws made for the better regulation of mankind. 22 . fighting with and conquering Goliath. 5. and the dread of him in them. neither life nor property would be secure. when men go forth to their work. And as there is a provision made for the wants of men. in that he does good to all his creatures. though these were not done to prove a divine Being. pursued after. such as the strange sights seen in the air. yet they necessarily suppose one. all which have their peculiar usefulness and advantages to human life. cold and heat. which made such strange revolutions and changes in kingdoms and states. and recovered the goods they had taken away: of Shamgar.continuance of health. and voices heard in the temple. were they not chained by almighty power. which are so well attested as oblige us to give credit to them: now. and Romans. a monstrous giant. prodigies. the whole race of men would be destroyed by them. as any of the relations in profane history. influencing providence of the divine Being. such as are not only out of. especially in some parts of the world. for it is by him "kings reign. kings. who fought with and killed six hundred Philistines with an ox goad: and of Samson. which governs the world. providence. and confirmed by Tacitus. and restoration of it. at least the godly among them. was it not for a divine agency. and these continued. and in the morning return to their caves and dens. and political schemes framed. and engaged with four kings who had beaten five before. and civil magistracy. to which might be added many others. were it not for the overruling providence of God. and amazing conquests. such as that of Abraham. with three hundred household servants. filling mens’ hearts with food and gladness". that God hereby "has not left himself without a witness of his existence and providence. was it not for the interposition of divine providence: and even it is owing to a divine Being that there are human forms of government. but must fall a prey to the rapine and violence of powerful oppressors. and others in human writings. seeking whom they may devour. who inspired men to do things beyond their natural skill and courage. Heroic actions. These are scripture instances. which are recorded in the scriptures. and continuing the certain and constant revolutions of "summer and winter. And can all this be without the care. things really miraculous have been wrought. to prowl about for their prey in the night. and to resort to woods and deserts. as well as night and day. which histories abound with: but besides these. and threw a whole army of theirs into a panic and confusion. which cannot be thought to be done without a superior and divine influence. who slew a thousand of them with the jawbone of an ass: of Jonathan. but not everything. and his armour bearer. Grecians. "homo esset homini lupus". do something to restrain men. and who go about our earth like roaring lions. Persians. and limited by the providence of God. in which are recorded the magnanimous actions of heroes. so for their safety: were it not that God had put the fear of man upon the wild beasts of the field. seedtime and harvest". whose numbers fill the surrounding air. we see what outrages are committed: and how greater still would be their number. such is the rage and malice of Satan. their wonderful successes. Human laws. they would be in the utmost danger of their lives: yea. a stripling. and if scripture is only regarded as a common history. and interposition of a wise and almighty Being? Can these ever be thought to be the effects of blind chance and fortune? Is it not plain and clear. who. as of the Babylonians. and of Christ and his apostles. and gives rain from heaven. notwithstanding these. and the overruling. there would be no safety for him. such as the miracles of Moses and the prophets. and his principalities and powers. by whose power alone they are performed.

by fire and brimstone from heaven. with certainty. not only famine. Tiberius and Nero. as the scriptures represent it. and the dreadful flashes of lightning. that they could get no rest. or by any means: as Cain. 7. indeed. and the like. and will call them to an account for their sins. it may be reasoned upon. and the exact fulfilment of them. and yet man is afraid of the future state: who is it that he is afraid of there? That must be a great Spirit that has dominion over us. and sagacity of a creature. let it be observed. The eighth and last argument shall be taken from the judgments in the world. and cannot be foreseen by the quickest sight. with other cities of the plain. at such times.6. as he was reckoned. who was so tortured in his conscience. while the people was shouting him as a God. and which being done. which does not depend on necessary causes. The sixth argument may be formed from the prophesies of contingent future events. used to be. "the thundering Jupiter". and eaten of worms. or under his bed. who. and died. though he taught men to despise death. and sharpest wit. which yet are abundantly confirmed by the testimonies of heathen writers. earthquakes. Now these fears and frights are not merely on account of the awful sound of the thunder. "Jupiter tonans". in a sense of divine wrath. proves there is a God. which is the worm that will never die. Thus a wild Greenlander argued. under the terrors of an evil conscience. perjured ones. of Herod being smitten by an angel. nor of the awful instances in the New Testament. the eternal punishment that will be inflicted on them. which swept away a world of ungodly men. that the heathens have had their auguries. yet. there are innumerable instances of 23 . fancied that "everyone that found him would slay him": and those wicked traitors. to prove their right to such a character. instances of which there are many in the sacred writings. and especially the latter. but such that have been inflicted on wicked men. that we may know that ye are gods: which is what none but the true God can do. and of Ananias and Sapphira. as being what none but God can do: "Let them bring forth and show us what shall happen: or declare us things for to come: show the things that are to come hereafter. Not to take notice of the universal flood. by which pretensions have been made to foretell future events. which is that fire that will never be quenched. and out brave it. and a sense of a divine Being. atheistical persons. since none but an omniscient Being can. and oracles. and he assented to their flattery. and the dread of a future state. &c. would hide himself in. sword. and yet this man set himself up for a god. this is natural to all men. Some are terribly frightened at thunder and lightning. and which is proof of a superior Being. who is above men. This is what is challenged and required from heathen deities. and this has been the case of many others: bold and "strong spirits". which have had their exact accomplishment: but not to insist on these. but from the guilt of sin. the philosopher. and has done. and one that is truly so. but because of the divine and tremendous Being who is supposed to send them: the Heathens were sensible that thunder is the voice of God. there must be a God. disbelieve the divine revelation. 8. as atheistical persons love to be called. that if there is a foretelling of future things. nor enjoy peace any where. which certainly come to pass. prophesies which relate both to particular persons and to whole kingdoms and states. the Roman Emperor. That there is such a thing as divination. and take vengeance on them? And. O did we but know him! O had we but him for our friend!" Now what do all these fears and tortures of conscience arise from. before he had knowledge of the true God: "Man has an intelligent soul. and by furies with burning torches: and Hobbes. Catiline and Jugurtha: and those wicked emperors. indeed. and is explained of a presension and knowledge of future things: now this being granted. and therefore called their Jove. our English atheist. foretell what shall come to pass. is subject to no creature in the world. divinations. as if he was continually haunted by his mother’s ghost. is said to be confirmed by the consent of all nations. was most terribly frightened. soothsayings. being struck dead for lying unto God: besides these. and. The seventh argument may be urged from the fears of men. was wont to be very uneasy when alone in the dark: and Epicurus. Many have been so terrified in their consciences on account of sin. since those who are atheistically inclined. And. blasphemers. will greatly lie in the tortures of their conscience. and the tortures of a guilty conscience. those monsters in impiety. and of the burning of Sodom and Gomorrah. when he perceived that he himself was about to die. as Caligula. have been sometimes found to be very timorous and fearful. pestilence.

From these must be excluded. there is such a mixture of falsehood and impiety. recorded in the histories of them. and are the standard of faith and practice. before I proceed any further. Ezra. and establish the divine authority of them. Zephaniah. which are sometimes bound up with the Bible. Luke. The books of the New Testament the four Evangelists. The books of the Old Testament. perfections. that they cannot by any means be allowed to be placed upon an equality with the sacred scriptures. and in our age. with which entirely agree Josephus’s account of them. and the Revelation. They are called the law. To which may be added. These books are commonly called Canonical Scripture. Zechariah. Numbers. to secure the ground I go upon. Ecclesiastes. for the uses he mentions. of the same or a like kind. the lesser Prophets. they lay in a claim to a divine original. his essence. Proverbs. or to some of the first Christians. as well as before. the larger Prophets. are the five books of Moses. Nahum. and sure rule to go by. The Gospel of the Infancy of Jesus. Haggai. Leviticus. Joshua. and tends to corroborate their divine authority. concerning which. by the Jewish church. I shall. with the Lamentations. Now these are the books which the apostle calls. Observe the divine authority of the Scriptures. The books of the Old Testament. that they are from God. the Psalms. Isaiah. and everything relative to him. Mark. Jeremiah. and Deuteronomy. and Solomon’s Song. By the Scriptures. I understand the books of the Old and of the New Testament. and Esther. and John. one of Jude. pleaded for by the papists. we have a more sure word of prophecy to attend unto. and Malachi. excepting the book of the Revelation. Genesis. Obadiah. and all dreams and visions. for though there may be some things in them worthy to be read. plain. 1. by enthusiastic persons. to the great scandal and disgrace of it. the historical books. or the whole of Scripture. two of Peter. and pretended revelations and prophecies. deserves our regard. and which testimony of both churches. will be taken out of the sacred scriptures. Ezekiel. and in our nation. which were all of them then written. and the catalogue of them brought from the East by Melito. Nehemiah. the fourteen Epistles of the Apostle Paul. in all ages and countries. and consulted with on all occasions. and show that they are a perfect. Joel. all human and unwritten traditions. or doctrine 24 . which carry in them manifest marks of imposture. as human writings. The Constitutions of the Apostles. it will be necessary. Amos. which had been long in being in his time. and however what is said by him is true of what might be written afterwards. and disbelieve the Being of God? A Body of Doctrinal Divinity Book 1—Chapter 2 Of the Holy Scriptures As what I shall say hereafter concerning God. but the books of the New Testament. and the books of both Testaments agree with the account which Origen gives of them in his time. and who now can hear or read such awful judgments. since these words of his stand in an epistle supposed to be the last that was written by him. and within our knowledge. studied diligently. and which have always been acknowledged by the Christian church. Micah. three of John. one of James.judgments. Hosea. &c. as will be seen. persons. Likewise all such spurious books falsely ascribed to the apostles. delivered out in later ages. Exodus. Judges. because they have been always received by the church into the canon. the books that bear the name of Apocrypha. Hermes’s Pastor. sometimes called the Pentateuch. and proved by them. works. or show. as un-canonical. as. the prophetic books. and worship. and to be read constantly. and the claim is just. Ruth. Blessed be God. the two books of Samuel. Job. and Daniel. respecting them. the two of Kings. and the Acts of the Apostles. or rule of faith. "all Scripture". said by him to be "given by inspiration of God": which include not only the books of the Old Testament. the poetical books. Matthew. Jonah. or inspired by him. the two of Chronicles.

(Ex. by divine order.2). a testimony of his against the Cretians. in later times. of that wicked spirit.of the Lord. and "spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost". That when we say that the Scriptures are the word of God. is of God. and moved him to cast himself down from the pinnacle of the temple. Rev. and what he suggested to them. dictated and inspired by him. and which he was directed to quote and write in his epistles and discourses. as Moses and others were ordered to do. and when he inspired them. we do not mean that it was spoken with an articulate voice by him. the commandment of the Lord. evil beasts. but according to the will of God. pride. of your own poets have said. and according to which men are to speak. Some of the writers of thee scriptures. Secondly. (John 10:35) as it is also called. and when and what they pleased. (Isa 1:10. 19:7-9). or the Ten Commands. (Rom. 2:4-6). to prove matters of fact. were moved and directed by the Lord to commit them to writing. ordered to be written. when he was discoursing before the wise men at Athens. they were under the impulse and direction of God. blasphemy. which were produced "ad hominum". I shall premise the following things. and very bad ones too. in later times. as of Moses. (Ps. "Evil communications corrupt good manners". Not all that is contained in the scriptures is of God. and the writing of them was the writing of God. was of God. are several quotations out of heathen authors. by the Psalmist David. as of Cain. and with a. in which they said not that which was right of God. and out of their own memories. 2). as Moses. 3:2. and may be safely consulted and depended on. Jer 2:1. And the prophets frequently introduce their prophecies and discourses. nor according to their will. and out of their own brains. and others. some are the speeches of Satan. So when he tempted our Lord. and which was directed to. And another out of Epimenides. but the very words in which they 25 . or written immediately by the finger of God: the law of the Decalogue. and not succeeding in that. (Heb 1:1. Another out of Menander. annals. and journals. 9). to discover the more the corruption of human nature: and even of good men. a poet of Crete. "as certain. There are also speeches of bad men. it is the same as if it was written by himself. and the historical ones. 15:33). (Job 1:9-11. "the word of the Lord came" to them. being eye and ear witnesses of many things they wrote. and others they might take out of diaries. 31:18. Some are the words of others. or that this word is of God. and by his Son. (Matt. and particularly the friends of Job. of their own and former times. 1 Pet. So that all they wrote may be truly said to be by divine authority. 1c. yet in all they wrote. Pharaoh. 1b. though he said more. 19) and what was ordered by the Lord to be written. in the proof of the divinity of the sacred Scriptures. (Acts 17:28). in which these speeches are. for greater conviction. so that though they themselves are not the word of God. 2:2. "thus saith the Lord". (1 Cor. 4:5. (Deut. 30:2. what to leave. and what to take and insert into their writings. and what was more correct. for that reason. And which God "at sundry times. as Job did. spake by the prophets". and transmit to posterity. says he. that they were bid to write what he delivered to them. the testimony of the Lord. and impiety. Thirdly. indeed. the statutes of the Lord. 1:11. to write what might be suggested to them by him. Let it be observed. 31:19. and the judgments of the Lord. and in divers manners. 1:21). "always liars. But before I proceed any further. slow bellies". one out of Aratus. and done. for we are also his offspring". and requested he might have leave to do an injury both to his property and to his person. could have written them of their own knowledge. Jer. and he himself did not say in every speech of his what was right of God. In the writings and discourses of the apostle Paul. who said they were. to show the weaknesses and frailties of the best of men. 20:1. And our Lord expressly calls the scripture the word of God. Hab. were articulately spoken by him. and his apostles. than they did. But now the penmen of these books. (2 Pet. by saying. So that though the words are not of God. and yet these speeches are on record. the fear of the Lord. (Heb 4:12). And is represented as the oracles of God. David. urged him to fall down and worship him. First. for they did not speak and write of their own head. as when he suggested that Job was not a sincere worshipper of God. and are on record. that not the matter of the Scriptures only. to show the malice. 32:15) in which he might set an example to his servants. yet that they were quoted and written. that it might remain to be read: it is enough. 1:11). Jonah. and their long discourses. and especially since the penmen wrote as they were directed. yea. 1a. yet that they are written. and destroy himself.

and which was natural to them. and some particularly may receive benefit by it. and not of translations. only the original exemplar is authentic. or some one of them. and erred in some lesser and lighter matters. (1 Cor. and alike useful. and then we should be left at an uncertainty about the real sense of the Holy Spirit. for whenever a set of men have been engaged in this work. and by it to be examined. were given by divine inspiration: and as for difference of style. it will be sufficient to remove it. and this may be confirmed from the testimonies of the writers themselves: says David. And the apostle Paul speaks of himself. when it is observed. 2:13) and it is "the writing". ought to submit to. as it sometimes is with men. (2 Sam. have been blessed of God. is every translation to be brought. in various nations. And the same may be said of all others. so it might be with the sacred writers. 3:16). men well skilled in the languages. yet not so as to affect any momentous article of faith or practice. though ever so perfect: and to the Bible. "The Spirit of the Lord spake by me. for then the contest would be between one nation and another which it should be. the wills or testaments of men. as well as matter. which has been decreed authentic by the council of Trent. unless it could be thought. and partakers of the grace of God. think that the sacred writers were only furnished of God with matter. comfort. he says. and transcriptions. that is. therefore. as well as matter. for as it has been the will of God. one of the writers of the Old Testament. but this is not reasonable to suppose. in its original languages. we should have no certain and infallible rule to go by. and other inspired apostles of the New Testament. and edification of thousands and thousands. and agreeable to their genius and circumstances. in our English translation. unless some few passages in Jeremiah. and particularly in ours. that they have clear and satisfactory ideas of things in their own minds. so he could accommodate himself to the style such persons were wont to use. This is to be understood of the Scriptures. 1d. nay. or by explaining them according to it. that the Scriptures. French. it could not be read and understood by all: so the papists. for it must be either all the translations together. in his providence. to raise up men capable of such a performance. "by inspiration of God". or any deeds made by them. and to be corrected and amended: and if this was not the case. if words were not suggested to them. and were directed of God to the use of words they have rendered the original by. that the translators of the Bible into each of the languages of the nations into which it has been translated. "Which things we speak. whether English. they plead for their Vulgate Latin version. for the conversion. and to use their own style. though they have mistook some words and phrases. or the word of God as written. which is absurd and ridiculous. either by reading them in it. but which the Holy Ghost teacheth". that they are the rule of faith and practice. and Esther. Some who are not for organic inspiration. as they call it. so far as they agree with the original. not in the words which man’s wisdom teacheth. and appears absolutely necessary that so it should be. though it abounds with innumerable errors and mistakes. The books of the Old Testament were written chiefly in the Hebrew language. and therefore such translations as ours may be regarded as the rule of faith. Ezra. if not led into a wrong one. and in which. and yet are at a loss for proper words to express and convey the sense of them to others. because they agree not in all things: not one. 26 . which they suppose accounts for the difference of style to be observed in them: but if this was the case. But then. and of integrity and faithfulness. and were left to clothe them with their own words. and copies of them. having the fear of God before their eyes. they have never failed of producing a translation worthy of acceptation. most agreeable. and had general ideas of things given them. were under the divine inspiration also in translating. And if any scruple should remain on the minds of any on this account. and his word was in my tongue". because they are not upon an equality with the original text. as in the original languages in which they were written. &c. tried and judged. as were in our nation. not all of them. 23:2). that all may read it. Fourthly. Daniel. and especially about our own. that they even assert that the Scriptures. it seems. of sound principles. and could one be agreed upon. that words also. and not translations. he has taken care. and be corrected by their version. so far do they carry this affair. as it was easy with God to direct to the use of proper words. Dutch. in their originals. (2 Tim. Let not now any be uneasy in their minds about translations on this account. for this is like the charters and diplomas of princes. in the Chaldee language.are written are of God. and the New Testament in Greek: in which languages they can only be reckoned canonical and authentic. that the Bible should be translated into different languages.

1a. and the worship they require. or they or the earth were. and to live soberly. chaste and clean. rather than the Bible. as was bestowed upon the apostles on the day of Pentecost. and particularly into ours. they are doctrines according to godliness. hence. who were the first parents of mankind. and sets them in a just light. and enemies of the truth. the Scriptures inform us what was done in eternity. or to any of the perfections of his nature. Yea. Having premised these things. strikes at all sorts of sins. or any profane writings and histories. with respect to the creation of the world. and continued that miracle in every nation. God must have wrought a miracle for them. There is nothing impious or impure. to his wisdom and goodness. absurd. First. and what is just between man and man. for what would they have done for a Bible. to his purity and holiness. which may be evinced from the following things. because the doctrines and precepts of them are so pure and holy. which could never have been known but by revelation from God himself. they choose to read an idle romance. which none but God himself could reveal. adulteries. how. such a backwardness. I now proceed to prove the claim of the Scriptures to a divine authority. without this revelation. and thefts. There are some things recorded in the Scriptures. it forbids whatever is evil. to the original purity of the Scriptures. an aversion to reading the Scriptures. not of their being. nor of time. and make known to men. who take it into their heads to decry learning and learned men. In general there is nothing in them unworthy of God. as well as with things foolish and absurd: or as in the Pagan treatises of their gods. but the charge. and requires nothing but what is for the good of men. which there is no reason in the world ever to have expected. and good". The things contained in the Scriptures are pure and holy. nor of their conversion. and from everything that might be offensive to the ear of the chaste and pious. absurd or ridiculous in them. an impure novel. which abound with tales of their murders. and keep up. are strictly holy. the legal part of them is "holy. as they are. men have run into strange. that the world was made out of nothing. 1b. so as to have been capable of reading it. and care should be taken in all translations. whose carnal minds are enmity to God. and extravagant notions about these things. even 27 . From the subject matter of them. exposes and condemns them. and how long it was in making. when. against erroneous persons. "The Scriptures of truth". as in the Al-koran of Mahomet. they may with great propriety be called. which was from the beginning. in which it may have failed. yea. had it not been for them as instruments? and if they had it. free from all levity and obscenity. what is but a reasonable service to God. and inhuman sacrifices used in the worship of them. 1:2) and plainly show they came from the holy God. Eph 1:13). and clear and illustrate it by their learned notes upon it. Bless God. how. as particularly. the Holy Spirit dictated them. But. and that he still continues to raise up such who are able to defend the translation made. 1. and godly: they are indeed. when made. nothing contrary to his truth and faithfulness. as it is false. (Rom. they teach and influence men to deny ungodliness and worldly lusts. 10:21. there is no falsehood nor contradiction in them. to make use of language neat and clean. by some ignorant persons. and they are justly called "holy Scriptures". And hence it is that there is in natural men. 1c. the precepts the Scriptures enjoin. by observing the nature of the doctrines. And there are remarkable instances in the marginal readings of some passages in the Hebrew text. in a supernatural way. and the impure rites and ceremonies. righteously. and tend to promote it. which is stuffed with impurities and impieties. just. (Dan. 7:12). The doctrines of them are holy. The style of the Scriptures is pure and holy. charged with licentiousness. as much as may be. raised up such men to translate the Bible into the mother tongue of every nation. holy men spoke and wrote them. and of what made. and to correct and amend it in lesser matters. and from whence may be drawn no inconsiderable argument in favour of their being of God. It is holy in its own nature. it is easily removed. and the "Word of truth". and be thankful that God has. and the effects of them. in every age. but before time. and to every individual. therefore. as the choice of men in Christ to everlasting salvation. I mean the gift of tongues. and in what form and order. to prevent this. and the original of mankind.Here I cannot but observe the amazing ignorance and stupidity of some persons. in his providence. (Rom.

is expressed in a few words. Babylonians. as well as their future conversion is prophesied of (Hosea 3:4. and which have accordingly come to pass. see (1 King 13:2) compared with (2 King 23:17. which may he called the "council of peace". power. 8:22. 44:28. of what nation. so about saving him. and session at the right hand of God: all which are plainly pointed out in prophecy. 1:9. covenanting with his Father for them. no discord and 28 . see Exo. what conquests he should make. of whose destruction Isaiah and Jeremiah prophesied. and who now are no more. three or four hundred years before his birth. as the Egyptians. or ever the earth was". and what he should do. before the world began. Cyrus. were formed and agreed upon: so the covenant of grace made with Christ from eternity. reckoned by the Gentiles incredible. and others. king of Persia. the rise. the eternal. 40. which is. (Pro. 5:2. which is ineffable by us. 4). and give orders for the rebuilding their temple. whether doctrines or facts. Eph. (Zech. and agreeing to be their Surety and Saviour. which are particularly spoken of in the book of the Revelation. and present state. as Josiah. his incarnation and birth of a virgin. all which exactly came to pass. without price or reward. 9:2) and all their miseries and afflictions in their last destruction. Some of them relate to particular persons. All which could never have been known unless God himself had revealed them. 1e. have had their exact accomplishment in him. And also the council held between the divine Persons. 45:1-3. (Isa. are harmonious. which. and what he should do. his burial. before they were. There are some things recorded in the Scriptures as to the future. and the manner of his operation on the souls of men. 11. "How can these things be?" and the resurrection of the same body at the last day. from everlasting". and burn mens’ bones on it". the place where he should be born. the great mystery of godliness": the regeneration of men by the Spirit of God. (Gen. Assyrians. his incarnation and birth of a virgin. "from everlasting. are not to be accounted for upon the principles of nature and reason. on hearing of. no yea and nay. 5). in which covenant he was set up as Mediator. to become incarnate. and ruin of antichrist. the doctrines. see Dan. and that he should let the captive Jews go free. (Eph 1:4). Ammonites. which is wonderful and amazing. Moabites. in him. Mic. which God only could foreknow would be. with many other things relating to him. 2 Tim. great part of which prophetic book has been already fulfilled. have not so much as a name on earth: and particularly many things are foretold concerning the Jews. "without controversy. 1:3. who was prophesied of by name. 12:35. as the Trinity of persons in the Godhead. as their descent into Egypt. are worthy of notice. and foretell with certainty that they should be. predictions of the calling of the Gentiles. also was prophesied of by name. though not contrary to reason. and the abolition of paganism in the Roman empire. yet are above the capacity of men ever to have made a discovery of. 20). and proves the revelation to be of God. see Ezra 1:1-4). ascension to heaven. (Jer. Others relate to kingdoms and states. 15:14. are all of a piece. generation of the Son of God. 13. There are some things in the Scriptures. all which was punctually fulfilled. as to be born to the house of David. and so work out the salvation of them. though revealed. Edomites. When "God was in Christ reconciling the world unto himself". and which. which was made known to their great ancestor Abraham. tribe. and what should befall them. and of all promises made to them. which. under the power of the Holy Ghost. 6:13). though delivered at sundry times. representing their persons and taking the charge and care of them. 1d. more than two hundred years before his birth. 1f."before the foundation of the world". and which things. and contingent events. and plan of salvation. and family. and return from thence after seventy years. what immense riches he should possess. whose "goings forth in it were of old. and obey and suffer for them. 29:10. The things contained in the Scriptures. 23. "offer up the idolatrous priests on Jeroboam’s altar. on the behalf of the chosen ones. the union of the human nature to his divine person. and the scheme of peace and reconciliation. by many of the prophets. abode and bondage there. made a master of Israel say. are prophetically described in Deuteronomy 28:1-68 and their exact case. for as there was a consultation held about making him. concerning the salvation of man. and coming from thence with great riches. 41) their captivity in Babylon. whose distinct mode of subsisting is mysterious to us. and in divers manners. To which might be added. But especially the prophecies concerning Christ. resurrection. for about nineteen hundred years. his sufferings and death. and of all blessings of grace given them.

they speak and write the same things. The prophecies of Isaiah are fraught with a rich treasure of divine elocution. so Moses published his own weaknesses and mistakes. 29:3-10. and it is remarkable. nor obtrude a falsehood upon the world. what seeming contradictions may be observed in any of them. the apostle Paul said none other things than what Moses and the prophets did say should be. to which some think they are compared in Song of Solomon 4:5. as in Amos the herdman. 3a. the authoritative manner in which they are delivered. and therefore must be of God. and influenced in all. they conceal not their own failings and infirmities. They appear to be plain. Moses. the book of Job. and what they wrote. and both agree to lay. and in different conditions and circumstances. Isa. (Job 38:1-41:34) the book of Psalms is full of bright figures and inimitable language. an heathen orator.disagreement among them. are found some of the most grand images. were exactly alike. when it was offered to him. Thirdly. and some of these arise from the carelessness of transcribers putting one word or letter for another. and this shows that they were dictated. 1:3). which were of one beaten piece. and spared not the blemishes of his family. They lived in different times and places. 3c. particularly see (Ps. admired some passages in the writings of Moses. They were holy and good men. attention and assent unto them. and such as would be daring and presumptuous for any but God to use. and were taken from the flock. nor to aggrandize themselves and their families. 3. 139:7-12). a type of Christ. and study. but they "spake and wrote as they were moved by the Holy Ghost". 7:3 and to the Cherubim over the mercy seat. which with the harmony of them show them to be of God. and enjoin the same moral duties of religion. they sought not popular applause. Secondly. not asking. 32:1. 3d. and not very material. who wrote "upon the Sublime". but demanding. honest. and yet they were all of the same sentiment. and faithful men.6). and which commands reverence and acceptance of them. deliver out the same truths and doctrines. such as. They were disinterested men. the two Testaments "are like two young roes that are twins". their rebellion and obstinacy. And as to historical facts. the majesty in which they appear. and even these instances are but few. 1:2) the sublimity of the style is such as exceeds all other writings: Longinus. by the Lord. O heavens". and highest flights of language. and idolatry: and the same may be observed of other inspired writers. 9:2. and were of different interests and capacities. not of his more remote ancestor Levi. and looked to one another. or from the herd. and both to the mercy seat. 113:3-8. that in some of the inspired writers. nor of his immediate parents. (Deut. 2. nor deliver out a known lie. with a little care. diligence. especially the speeches Jehovah himself delivered out of the whirlwind. in which they unite. with whom is terrible majesty. which surpasses all that is to be met with in the writings of men. are easily reconciled. in the case of the Shechemites. (Amos 4:13. is a further evidence of their divine original. both as to matter and manner. 3b. partakers of the grace of God. according to the different dispensations under which they were. Another argument for the divine authority of the Scriptures may be taken from the penmen and writers of them. in a low station of life. who have been bred up in a rustic manner. or from their nets. or other mean employments. what they wrote could not be of themselves. Many of these were men of no education. who is the foundation of the apostles and prophets. and therefore could never give into an imposture. and lively picturesque. abounds with such strong and lofty expressions as are not to be found in human writings. "Hear. nor worldly wealth. the figures used to engage hereunto are inimitable by creatures. and which never affect any article of faith or practice: such care has divine providence taken of these peculiar and important writings. and "I will speak". to make of him a great 29 . their illegal marriage. were above and beyond their ordinary capacities. nor of his favourite people the Israelites. The style and manner in which the Scriptures are written. by the same Spirit of God. and the same positive precepts. particularly (Gen. That early composition. 3e. 18:7-15.

and prevail upon them not to read them. the writers of the Scriptures seem to be men that neither could be imposed upon themselves. such as were done by Moses. and are beyond the power of a creature to perform. and disapprobation of them. and therefore could not be deterred from speaking and writing in his name. that had caused their children to be circumcised. upon reading the Scriptures. and sought not the wealth of men. or Satan’s temptations. 6) and if these writings were of Satan. that wicked spirit would never have shown such despite unto them. and cut off the people of Israel for their sins. and to live a holy life and conversation. and was attended with an intolerable stench. and laid open the secrets of it. and have endeavoured to destroy them. which they would never have done. who could not easily be prevailed upon to relinquish former tenets and practices. 60At which time according to the commandment they put to death certain women. attended with a divine power and influence. vexation. and his sons. which awaited them. they would not have such a disgust at them. Another argument may be drawn from the many wonderful effects the sacred writings. king of Syria. so that every good man has a testimony within himself of its divine authority. imposture. and deceit. Many have been converted from error. which was upon the altar of God." (1 Maccabees 1) this man died of a violent disorder in his bowels. and that they are of God. Seventhly. to them. and the prophets of the Old Testament. have had upon the hearts and lives of men. and every other. and death in every shape. nor sought to impose on others. see (Mark 16:20. The testimony bore to the Scriptures by miracles. comforting. Fifthly. who left all. Fourthly. 6. and idolatry. what is of the world. and put to death all with whom they were. by afflictions. and make such opposition to them: by this are to be known the Spirit of truth. and though the priesthood was conferred on Aaron his brother. smote him with an incurable and 30 . which yet he has done to witness the truth of divine revelation. grace in it. and followed him. and by the apostles of the New. and of strengthening. preferring the public good of that people to his own advantage. exposed themselves to reproach. had they attempted it. or to confirm a lie. and from a vicious course of life. and the enmity of devils. his flesh flaked off. The awful judgments of God on such who have despised them. than to attend the lower services of the tabernacle in common with the rest of his tribe: and of this disposition were the apostles of Christ. is approved by the men of the world. In short. and of producing faith.4). This "Word of God has been quick and powerful. nor have taken such pains to tempt men. it has pierced and penetrated into the recesses of the heart. see (1 John 5:9. "But the Lord Almighty. to have succeeded. and merely human. or hearing them explained. and reviving the spirits of the people of God when in distress. The hatred and opposition of men. 4. the God of Israel. his body was covered with worms. and contrary to the laws of nature. and to persuade others to use their utmost efforts to corrupt or destroy them. and the spirit of error. are no mean evidence that they are of God. who cut to pieces the copies of the book of the law wherever he found them. sharper than a twoedged sword". quickening the soul. afford no inconsiderable argument in favour of the divinity of them. but. bonds. and trouble.nation. it has been the means of enlightening the mind. 7. and the work of forgery. on the contrary. nor would it have been easy. refused it more than once. and burnt them. yet no other provision was made for his own family. he was not careful to have any of his posterity to succeed him in his office. superstition. 5. by the terrors and menaces of men. and of their message from him. even such as are above. "59Now the five and twentieth day of the month they did sacrifice upon the idol altar. yea. had they been bad men. 2:3. and by all the afflictions. and persecution. had they not been fully satisfied of their mission of God. had they not had full and clear conviction of them. abundantly confirm the genuineness of them. nor honour from them. and death itself. poverty. but what is of God is rejected. Heb. and even some of great natural parts and learning. regenerating and sanctifying the heart. which might be illustrated by the instances of Antiochus Epiphanes. for were they of men. who hereby has shown his resentment of such conduct and behaviour. to persecution. and which only Omnipotence itself could work: now these God would never do to establish the character of impostors. and though he was king in Jeshurun. to embrace and profess the truth. Sixthly. and root them out of the world. (1 John 4:5.10).

Noah’s flood. and both were highly resented by the divine Being. and sore torments of the inner parts. as his works of creation. some of them some thousands of years. and redemption. and that there was a First and a Second Testament. that the Scriptures receive no small evidence of the authority of them. Such the Scriptures are. contains the whole of his will and pleasure. though for some time it was not delivered in writing. and as it will be to the end of time. (Heb. not of ignorance. as the evangelist observes. "if it be confirmed". and has been clearly shown. and among the Gentiles: nor are all that were said and done by our Lord Jesus Christ recorded in them. exhortations. cautions." Men from the beginning had knowledge of God. the most early of that sort extant. there were many signs done by him which are not written. and "his work is perfect". whose writings are the first. when other writings are lost and perished. they contain the 31 . their origin. Secondly. the tower of Babel. From the Author of them. and imperfection. and are more ancient than any profane writings. by many hundreds of years. in each of the ages of time: nor all the sermons of the apostles. is plainly intimated. who flourished about the times of Isaiah. 2. error. The antediluvian patriarchs had it. through madness and despair. 9:15). in the height of his imperial glory. though they relate much of the state and condition of the church of God in all ages. and whiles he lived in sorrow and pain. Now a man’s testament. To which may be added. 21:25). a man’s testament. and so the postdiluvian ones." as is asserted in them. the peopling the earth by the sons of Noah. &c. perfect standard of faith and practice: which may be proved. so this work of the Scriptures. a "Testament": we commonly divide the Scriptures into the Books of the Old Testament. When we assert the perfection of them. admonitions. and history of them. as the apostle observes. an Old and a New one. who is a perfect Being." (2 Maccabees 9:9) and of Dioclesian. must be free from everything of that kind. and at last poisoned himself: the one showed a despite to the books of the Old Testament. and retired to a private life. and once fancied that he had done it. which they preached to the Jews. Eighthly. with respect to the chronology. and in what manner God was to be worshipped. the Roman emperor. from the testimonies of many heathen writers agreeing with them. [1] I go on to consider. which if they should be written. the other more especially to the books of the New Testament. and the divine writings have been preserved notwithstanding the malice of men and devils. providence. that. his flesh fell away. geography. (Gal. or will. The "Perfection" of the Scriptures. "That which is most ancient is most true. and the Books of the New Testament. 3:15). Many more instances might be produced. "no man disannulleth or addeth thereto". Now since God is the author of them. the confusion of languages. which could not be without a revelation. everything that ought to be believed and done. with many other things respecting the people of Israel. and of the way of salvation. to the times of Moses. delivered to the people of Israel. in the dispensations of his providence in the world." (2 Maccabees 9:5) "So that the worms rose up out of the body of this wicked man. and counsels of the prophets. First. (John 20:30. but when he found he had not accomplished his design. who is God. in whom is "no darkness at all". but these may suffice. who hereby showed himself the author of both. who by an edict ordered all the sacred books to be burnt. abdicated the empire. But then they relate all things necessary to salvation. and the filthiness of his smell was noisome to all his army. 2b. they coming from him. Nor that they contain all the discourses. "even the world itself could not contain the books that should be written". From the name they go by. and are "given by inspiration of God. are the poems of Homer and Hesiod. as concerning the creation of the world. and in the distributions of his grace to the sons of men. 8. concerning the disposition of his estate to whomsoever he pleases. 2a. The antiquity and continuance of these writings may be improved into an argument in favour of them: Tertullian says. they are the word of God.invisible plague: or as soon as he had spoken these words. laws. if possible. a pain of the bowels that was remediless came upon him. he might root Christianity out of the world. and are a complete. or it is not properly his will and testament. we do not mean that they contain a perfect account of all that God has done from the beginning of time. "he is a rock". the burning of Sodom and Gomorrah.

or that there is any such article of faith wanting in the books we have: if this cannot be proved. and thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself" (Matt. then much more must it appear so by the accession of the prophets. it contains what is the "good. The books of the Old Testament were complete and perfect in the times of Christ. both towards God and man. and being ratified and confirmed by the blood of Christ. and may refer to one of the epistles. every truth. Gad. that they are lost. From the epithet of "perfect" being expressly given unto them. What he would have done. copies of it being in the hands of Christians. of full pardon of sin through his blood. but the same he was then writing: but admitting. he affirms. not one was wanting. 2e. but of the doctrine of the Lord. 5:9) neither of them now extant: as to the first. "Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart. to which two heads the substance of them may be reduced: the Law is a perfect rule of duty. one jot. it does not appear to be another and distinct. in his providence. "as it is in Jesus". "the law of the Lord is perfect". So that they had not only the five books of Moses. 3:2) and they have been faithful keepers of them. that some book. but "all" the prophets. and. "beginning at Moses and all the prophets. had they done it: and whatever attempts may have been made by any under the Christian name. or not done. and so perfect that nothing can be added thereunto. but also the verses. about the disposition of the blessings of grace. and even the words and letters: and there never was nor now is. the whole duty of man. and "all" the scriptures of the Old Testament: nay. distinct from those we have (1 Cor. concerning the spiritual and eternal salvation of men (Acts 20:27). or would corrupt. notwithstanding the 32 . &c. indeed. numbering not only the books and sections. 19:7) which is to be understood. through the carelessness of transcribers of copies. not of the Decalogue. as the phrase signifies. And it is also objected to those of the New Testament. 24:27). but "from" it. shall in no wise pass from the law till all be fulfilled". The Gospel is the "perfect law". and perfect will of God" (Rom. that there was an epistle from Laodicea. all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge: it is the whole. or rule of faith and practice. Fifthly.whole will of God. all is comprehended in these two commands. by which they would have been detected. Kings. and contains a perfect plan of truth. or part of the inspired writings is lost. that "till heaven and earth pass. they may be. of perfect justification by Christ. they may be the same. then. in which there are plainer and clearer discoveries of the mind and will of God. are lost. as some think. has preserved. any reason to be given why they had corrupted. which God. that the books of Nathan. for such purposes: so that we have a perfect canon. that any essential article of faith is lost with it. The Jews had the oracles of God committed to their care. (Ps. it treats of perfect things. (James 1:25) which proclaims the glorious liberty of the children of God by Christ. and complete salvation in him. he says. let it be proved. as it seems. The Jews. and of the heavenly inheritance. or all the counsel of God. and the books of the New Testament since. are so sure and firm as not to be disannulled. we have. 2c. the things concerning himself" (Luke 16:31. they are to be corrected by other copies. that is not an epistle "to" Laodicea. or one tittle. the Scriptures. on the coming of Christ it was not their interest to do it. and Chronicles. or doctrine "of liberty". though it is not to be granted. and he himself. to corrupt some copies of either Testament. nor any mutilated and corrupted. who were able to correct what they should corrupt. and if it was perfect then as to the substance of it. when at that place: and as to that to the Corinthians. From the integral parts of them. "have Moses and the prophets". and. for argument sake. and have been detected. with the books of Samuel. but then it should be proved that these were inspired writings. It is objected to the perfection of the books of the Old Testament. or Ten Commands. and even before that it was translated into the Greek tongue. even what was delivered in the sacred writings extant in the times of David. 12:2). 22:37-40). the apostle James speaks of. 2d. expounded in all the scriptures. any part of the Old Testament. to those who are appointed by him heirs. (Col. and it is perfect. Thirdly. acceptable. From the essential parts of them. (Rom. the Law and Gospel. Fourthly. written by the apostle Paul. and Iddo. (Matt. or whatever mistakes may be made. containing all the books that were written by divine inspiration. 4:16) and another to the Corinthians. the prophets mentioned therein. if it can. and after the coming of Christ they could not do it if they would. even some of them to superstition and scrupulous nicety. 5:18).

and in every positive precept of God. as. with respect to the law. which is what is contended for. which requires any addition to them. and judged of by the holy Scriptures. that they are "for instruction in righteousness". And another end answered by them is. and. 2f. Sixthly. and direct to observe all that is commanded of God and Christ. and death. they used in fighting the good fight of faith. and condemned by the law of God. teaches to "deny ungodliness and worldly lusts" (1 Tim. for the detection. John 16:13) every doctrine is to be confirmed and established by them: our Lord proved the things concerning himself. to the assent of others. 19). Every doctrine proposed by men. whom he preached. his person. they were able to convince and stop the mouths of gainsayers: there never was an error. by sound doctrine. "If any man shall add unto these things. "opening and alleging". 12). &c. and held fast. and that by means of them. that is. And the wise man. but they contain "all truth". with these. And the Gospel agrees with the law herein. and which he was able to prove from thence (Acts 17:2. they are called "the Scriptures of truth". law or gospel": this is strictly enjoined the Israelites to observe. forbid. and that. but to be tried and proved. and conviction of error: thus Christ confuted the error of the Sadducees by the Scriptures (Matt. sins of omission or commission. and if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy. 4:2. 30) and the apostles. if men speak not according to this word. internal or external. (Rev. 12:32). for "to the law and to the testimony. They are also of use "for correction" of every sin. and what is contrary to the law. 3. closes the canon of the Scripture with these remarkable words. then they must be perfect. warred a good warfare. 2g. 9). preach any other gospel unto you. and it is not possible that anyone can arise in opposition to "the faith once delivered". 1:8. 10:21. of heart. See 1 John 4:1. in every moral duty of religion. according to the different dispensations. The Scriptures are sufficient to "make a man of God perfect. which the Spirit of God. is not immediately to be credited. it is because there is no light in them" (Isa. "Though we. as they were by the Bereans. and life. 1:9-11. than that which we have preached unto you—and ye have received.pretended defect. and thoroughly furnish him unto all good 33 . And the apostle and evangelist John. secret or open. office. sufferings. nor do this. the apostle Paul says. he said "none other things than what Moses and the prophets did say" should be. 13:9). but what they contain. or heresy. these were their spiritual weapons. 23). from the Scriptures. God shall take away his part out of the book of life". which are to be searched. but what has been confuted by the Scriptures. confutation. fetched from thence. "not to add unto. 26:22. And with respect to the Gospel. Now if there is nothing superfluous in the Scriptures. says of the Scriptures in his time. the Gospel of the grace of God. and nothing defective in them. given them by Moses (Deut. they instruct in everything of a moral or positive nature. and being found agreeable to them. 22:18. but what may receive its refutation from them. broached in the world yet. There is not a sin that can be named. 7:7. the word of God is the sword of the Spirit. (see Dan. all are forbidden. must needs be perfect and complete. "that Christ must needs have suffered and risen again from the dead. any part of the sacred writings. This may be argued from the sufficiency of them to answer the ends and purposes for which they are written. and that this Jesus is Christ". we have still a perfect rule of faith. but what the Scriptures inveigh against. to be taken from them. is to sound doctrine. 8:20). against false teachers. This may be further evinced from the charge that is given. reproved. and now writings by which all such ends are answered. in confirmation and defence of the doctrines he taught. "for doctrine. 3:16) they are sufficiently profitable and useful "for doctrine". the dictator of them. "Every word of God is pure—add thou not unto his words". and whatsoever is in them is truth. by them. and the commandments of it. for correction. lip. nor evangelical doctrine. there is no spiritual truth. God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book. or an angel from heaven. and correct. not only because they come from the God of truth. they are to be believed. 22:29. "Thou shalt not covet". and for instruction in righteousness". (Luke 24:25-27) the apostle Paul "reasoned out of the Scriptures". to see whether those things be so or not. Seventhly. for reproof. (2 Tim. 1 Thessalonians 5:21. and the other iniquity (Rom. Titus 2:11. indeed. nor diminish from. guides into. Acts 17:11 and these are serviceable "for reproof". let him be accursed" (Gal. or Agur. which says.

Nor is there any afflictive circumstance a good man can come into. and therefore must be full and perfect themselves (1 John 1:3. or those more dark passages with those that are clearer. unto salvation. the natural man. and minister of the word. Not a private good man only. To prove the "perspicuity" of the Scriptures. and of the salvation itself wrought out by him. the Scriptures are written to promote and increase the spiritual joy of God’s people. 1 Tim 6:11). as the doctrine of the Trinity of persons in the Godhead. and in such clear writings and epistles as those of the apostle Paul. for since they are a rule of faith and practice. 9:6. I proceed. but to make them patient under afflictions. cheering. seek after it. and to put men on searching them with close study. that we. and prayer. and that believing. the Son of God. Another use of the Scriptures. 2h. with application to himself. which neither learned nor unlearned men can understand and interpret without the Spirit of God. and embrace it. but then by comparing spiritual things with spiritual. gives an account of Christ. yet they are so fully 34 . "as in a glass. might have hope" (Rom. the light of the Scriptures has been a growing one. through patience and comfort of the Scriptures. for the apostle says. and furnishes him with sound doctrine. we behold. And this is so ordered on purpose to remove all contempt and loathing of the Scriptures. are dark and obscure. Nor are the Scriptures clear and plain to everyone that reads them. though he may understand the grammatical sense of words. earnest. and to humble the arrogance and pride of men. but one in a public character and office. which is the beginning. and pledge of eternal life (John 17:3). Moreover. under a divine influence and blessing. which points out to men the way of salvation. a preacher. and describes the persons that have an interest in it. 7. 3:17). and to be able to bring out of his treasure things new and old": and if they are able to make such a man perfect. and shall enjoy it. they are written for this end. they might have life through his name" (John 20:31) and hereby. 3. but most clear under the gospel dispensation. and give hope of deliverance out of them. it was but dim under the dispensation of the law of Moses. for it is not barely by reading the word they become so wise. One part of them being the gospel of salvation. and who. Eightly. but then the things themselves signified by them are clear and plain. the dictator of them. through the grace of God. see 2 Corinthians 3:12-18. a prophet.works" (2 Tim. Nor is every doctrine of the Scriptures expressed in so many words. 2 Peter 3:16. that men "might believe that Jesus is the Christ. and which may be a means of enlivening. as well as of eternal salvation hereafter. and applying it to them. "Whatsoever things were written aforetime. it became more clear through the writings of the prophets. answered by them. for the most part. his incarnation and satisfaction. yet he does not understand the meaning of them. 119:49. where. at least in a spiritual way. some parts of them. who used "great plainness of speech". and an end to be. are made wise enough to see their need of it. 50) yea. they should be clear and plain. by the mere light of nature. to engage reverence of them. they come to have the knowledge of God and Christ. The Scriptures are able to make a man "wise unto salvation" (2 Tim. (Ps. but through the Spirit of wisdom and revelation opening their eyes to see what is contained in it. but there is a promise in the word of God suitable to him in it. &c. they must be perfect themselves. and dint of reason. and there are terms and phrases answerable to them. they are a sealed book. or they are to be deduced from thence by just and necessary consequences. application. were written for our learning. and of divine things: though in the gospel dispensation. there are some things "hard to be understood". is not only the learning and instruction of private men. and of God in Christ. as well as those of a public character. and comforting him. he has a disgust and contempt of them. indeed. the author of it. and comfort them in them. as they are: not that they are all equally clear and plain. to deliver out to the edification of others. and which is. 3:15). the glory of the Lord". by means of these he becomes "a scribe well instructed in the kingdom of God. the eternal generation of the Son of God. 4). and. whereby the gospel becomes "the power of God unto salvation" to them. In short the Scriptures contain all things in them necessary to be believed. in which sense the phrase is used both in the Old and New Testament (1 Sam. and some things in them. An acquaintance with these fits him for the work of the ministry. and so far as he has any notion of them. 15:4). they may be plainly understood. and that that joy might be full. and to excite attention to them. with open face.

offices. and judge all things. as the apostle Paul interprets it (Rom. that thou mayest do it". God. women. From other testimonies of Scripture. and in thy heart. And the whole of Scripture is the "sure word of prophecy. which supposes them legible and intelligible. and the elephant swim. 1:3). and unbelief. and there was a certain time of the year for them to assemble together to hear it read. "to whom it is given to know the mysteries of the kingdom". or the gospel. and a light unto my path" (Ps. had the law read unto them. From exhortations to all sorts of people to read them. "That salvation is alone by Jesus Christ. neither is it far off—it is not in heaven—neither is it beyond the sea—but the word is very nigh unto thee. "Thou shalt not kill. they are like a full and deep river. of his person. the same David says of the word of the Lord in general. knew the holy Scriptures. is not hidden from thee. 3:15) believers. and had the exercise of their rational faculties. and what they are compared unto. but if it was not plain and clear. who is "the Father of lights". and to be "blinded by the god of this world". not only of the law of Moses. (John 5:39) and the Bereans are commended as more noble than those of Thessalonica. Hence the ministers of the word are called the light of the world. and the law is light" (Pro. is compared to a "glass". and compared what they heard with them. and everyone of the glorious truths and doctrines of it (2 Cor. or legal part of them. see 2 Peter 1:19. 3b. see Isaiah 29:11. "For this commandment. and of giving light all around. as Gregory says [2]. and the mysteries of his grace (Matt. but all that people in general. The law. in thy mouth. "The commandment is a lamp. And if it is not hidden. and not of the works of men?" and so everything necessary of belief unto salvation. or shun. and therefore what comes from him must be light and clear.". and the knowledge of it to be come at. directing how to walk and act. as has been proved. 35 . "Thy word is a lamp unto my feet. have knowledge of them. But then the Scriptures are plain to them that have a spiritual understanding. are clearly expressed. 4. so as to understand them. "the glory of the Lord". as unto a light that shineth in a dark place": and so the means of dispelling the darkness of ignorance. who are spiritual men. the word of faith.expressed and clearly revealed. then it must be open. or little children. from a child. "Thou shalt have no other gods before me. 8:3) Timothy. commanding one thing to be done. grace. nor at a distance and inaccessible. they are instruments of enlightening men into the will of God. who are left to the native darkness of their minds. (1 John 2:12. 119:105). 3d. In short. and righteousness. and more explicitly.?" And how clearly is asserted the great and fundamental doctrine of the gospel. through the free grace of God. because by opening and explaining the Scriptures. men. and this is to be understood. children. Our Lord advises to "search the Scriptures". and who are commended for so doing. &c. Not only the kings of Israel were to read the law of the Lord. that they might know whether they were right or not (Acts 17:11. which I command thee this day. who were at years of maturity. in which the lamb may walk. 3a. and strangers. 2 Corinthians 4:3. and are a plain direction to men what to do. and hearing them read. &c. and forbidding the doing of another? in what plain language are they expressed. From the several parts of them. Thus in the times of Nehemiah and Ezra. The commandments of the law. persons of every sex and age. 31:11-13). and regenerate persons of every rank and degree. 10:6-8). it is to those that perish. 3:18). From the author of them. because they searched the Scriptures daily. error. as before observed. (Neh. 3c. and easy to be understood. in different places. 6:23). but more especially of the gospel. that the glorious light of the gospel might not shine into them. (2 Tim. From all sorts of persons being capable of reading them. whereunto men do well to take heed. The perspicuity of the Scriptures may be argued. What are more clear and plain than the precepts of the law. 2:13. young men. that if the gospel is hid to any. 17:19. 5:14). is represented by things which are light. in which may be clearly beheld. The evangelical part of the Scriptures.12. 1 Corinthians 2:14. whether fathers. preached by the apostles. particularly from Deuteronomy 30:11-14. both with respect to doctrine and duty. and give it. it would have been to no purpose for them to attend it (Deut. in whom is "no darkness at all". see Rev. 3e. 14).

who have their senses exercised. especially the parts of positive and instituted worship. and there is a public one. upon the whole. (2 Pet. otherwise. it seemed proper and necessary to commit them to writing. it was owing to divine revelation. 2 Tim. reason in such sense is not opposed to revelation. and to be believed before any human testimony. a sufficient rule and guide in matters of religion. and the necessity of it. "The testimony of the Lord is sure". and nothing less than the Scriptures are. and particularly that the ends before mentioned might be answered by them. spiritual men. by the preacher of the word but both are subject to. which is the only certain and infallible rule of faith and practice. and of which it is not a competent judge. in different dispensations. there is a private interpretation of Scripture. 4. since they are the Scriptures of truth. and. and unassisted by divine revelation. namely. which it was intended should be. by the woman’s seed. as for conversion. and is the ordinary means of guiding into it. And since they are of divine authority. as such it can be no rule or guide at all to have recourse unto. time. (Ps. even not the light of nature and reason. They are the judge of all religious controversies. 6:16). and it required but few hands to transmit it from one to another. who cannot lie (Dan. 3:15-17) and the rather. import. and of arriving to a more perfect acquaintance with it.Nor is the public preaching of the word. Eph. though there are things above it. that the Scriptures are easily understood. and of the appointment. Acts 8:30. there is nothing in revelation contrary to reason. the infallible interpreters thereof. And after the fall. as a rule and guide to them in their state of integrity. 2 Pet. and it was the pleasure of God to make further and clearer discoveries of his mind and will. so much talked of. and since it has been set up as such against divine revelation. according to these. how. nature. their peace. even a divine testimony bore unto them. or the Spirit of God therein. and particularly the will of God. according to his ability and light. of the state and condition in which he was created. but it must be considered as it is in fact. but when mens’ lives were shortened. either in single individuals. Now the light of nature or reason. A sure. If it is considered as in individuals. both that they might remain. and by them determined. nor are the church or its pastors. and these unacquainted with. (1 John 5:9) yea. as to abstinence from eating of the fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil? And if our first parents stood in need of a divine revelation. try and judge all things. even though it is known. (1 Cor. or rather insufficiency. with respect to things both to be believed and done: a rule they are (Gal. since that is. 1:19) these are the witness of God. comfort. but not subsisting in men or books. and place. which every Christian may make. after the image and in the likeness of God. (Rom. or in whole bodies of men. to be objected to all this. and that they might be referred to in case of any doubt or difficulty about them. and to frame new laws and rules of worship. is not to be taken in an abstract sense. in a state of innocence. according to the 36 . 15:4. may be. and then its sufficiency. both as to matter. that man had any knowledge of the way of his salvation. and besides. but differs. There seems to be a real "necessity" of such a rule in the present state of things. serves to lead into a larger knowledge of it. or considered only in theory. and besides. and for establishment in the truth. should he have known anything of the manner of his creation. use. The Scripture is the best interpreter of Scripture. and to be determined by the Scripture itself. Tit 1:2). 31. 1:12. so for greater edification and comfort. and nothing but truth in them: but have a true. 14:3. 4:1113). since nothing else was. 10:21. and therefore greater than man’s. the extent of his power and authority over the creation. or should be. certain. and infallible rule to go by. and for some time after. must be reckoned infallible. it may be proper to show the insufficiency of it. what it has been. And. to which all are to be brought. and not only contain what is truth. So that it may be concluded. and end of sacrifices. to discern between good and evil. and edification. 19:7) and a "more sure word of prophecy" than all others whatever. will soon appear. and are perfect and plain. and so highly exalted. in what manner God was to be served and worshipped by him. and was handed down by tradition to the patriarchs before the flood. nor councils and popes. and therefore can be no guide in such matters. indeed. while the lives of men were of a long continuance. and come from the God of truth. then much more we in our present state of ignorance and depravity. a divine revelation was necessary to Adam. and to be depended on. the learning and instruction of men in matters of faith and practice. by what means his animal life was to be supported. it may easily be observed it is not alike in all. and though this revelation was for a time unwritten. and as it subsists. they are a sure rule.

because they serve to lead into some knowledge of his nature and perfections. and such profane and wicked practices that obtained among them. whose folly is represented in a true and full light by the apostle. and demolish such idolatry. and if these are not known. Multitudes have gone into polytheism. the god of health. by the light of nature and reason in them. who is sometimes magnified as "divine". and of worship to be given them. it can be no sure rule or guide to go by: let one of the most exalted genius. and hence he commonly calls him to on . let Socrates be the man. fowl. but various sorts of beasts. will further appear by considering the following particulars. That there is a God may be known by the light of nature. he himself cannot be known. is not so to another. fishes. destitute of a divine revelation. and what is agreeable to the reason of one man. without the help of revelation. introduced and established the said things. it will appear not to be the same in all. since God is incomprehensible. that has studied nature most. So when Moses asked the Lord. they have deified. if any thing. some have a greater share of it than others. he has no name. reflections. if he was not guilty of the love of boys in an unnatural way. 4a. Indeed. and have worshipped the creature besides the Creator. men. it must be a very deficient rule of faith and practice. and even forms of such that never existed: and some that have received the notion of a supreme Being. and some others. creeping things. and therefore unless it was alike and equal in all. have gone into different modes of worship. in the Gentile world. if any at all. and therefore Plato [1] says. for one of the last things spoken by him was. education. be chosen. yet he was not clear of the heathenish notions of inferior deities. and devised different rites and ceremonies. is the voice of reason as well as of revelation. and where the name of God is not known. which his name Jehovah is expressive of: 37 . constitution. were never able. 1:19-25) and though the unity of the divine Being. yet have also acknowledged a numerous train of inferior deities. to prevail over. not only the sun. and as their forefathers. and in whom the light of nature and reason may be thought to be sublimated and raised to its highest degree. &c. and have embraced for gods almost everything in and under the heavens. moon. "Ens". he himself bewails the weakness and darkness of human nature. but "who" and "what" he is. If the light of nature and reason be considered in large bodies of men. and being but one. have been at a loss about. and yet. we could have had no certain notion. and he is most grievously slandered. and followed different customs and usages. and mortal men. and of the things of God. and stars. without the latter. the Being of beings. and arrived to the highest degree of reason and good sense. The eternal Being. and confessed the want of a guide. and besides. and the insufficiency thereof. it may be proper to begin with his names: the names of persons and things are usually the first that are known of them. of three divine persons subsisting in the unity of the divine essence. and even differed in things of a moral nature. and reasonings on them. one of the wisest and sagest philosophers of the Gentiles. he bid him say. they. should they ask the name of him that sent him to them. to offer a cock to Esculapius. what he should say to the children of Israel. to desire his friends to fulfil a vow of his. for instance. climate. and therefore a proper introduction to such a subject. he has no need of a name to distinguish him. for though he asserted the unity of the divine Being. for as for what Plato and others have been supposed to say A Body of Doctrinal Divinity Book 1—Chapter 3 Of the Names of God Being about to treat of God. yet by the former. Some under the guidance of it have worshipped one sort of deities. as a rule and guide in religion. (Rom.circumstances of men. is worthy of regard. or names. properly speaking. in whole nations. "The Being". and the rather the consideration of his name. he is not nominable. supposing they had any. is known of them. and is said to die a martyr for it. "I am that I am". and especially of each of the parts they have taken in the economy of man’s salvation. that is. as it was in him. or increase of light. with all their observations. it cannot be thought that much. guided by this light.

and to be made a curse for them. have given this as a reason. the word is expressive of God as a judge. as is thought by many learned men [8] and so is a fit name for God. that three persons. (Ps. Eli. 6:13. just. what are spoken of him. Though this word Elohim cannot be derived from the word so signifying. my God". Lord. &c. silver. 8). improperly of creatures. Father. appeared. as the epithets of unbegotten. by Junius and Tremellius. as Creator. &c. which are worthy of consideration. sometimes. it is not agreed. Ps 33:6). proceeding from the Father and the Son: some are figurative and metaphorical. as holy. good. and that under a conditional curse. because he is the object men must swear by. an epithet that well agrees with the divine 38 . and still less the other two persons: besides there are other and better reasons to be given for this name of the divine Being. 14:24. because it has the immoveable and immutable h. being the Surety of his people. God. as. but the Lord God only. 2. and so. not idols of gold. 6. in which sense the word is used of men. that they might receive the blessing. &c. bound themselves with an oath. according to the Jewish writers [5]. which are what will be particularly considered. because the three divine Persons. some are common to the Three divine persons. as Jehovah. and binds them with an oath to himself. indeed. because he adjures and causes others to swear. 10:11) but properly only of God. to say no worse of. and besides. (1 Sam. in which they are followed by some learned men [6]: or. and men. as Father. or is called by the prophets and apostles. Isa. The names of God. and neglects and despises the sacrifice and righteousness of Christ. to whom God is compared. are used in Daniel 11:36 and the word is left untranslated in Matthew 27:46 "Eli. begotten. 8:5. in the books of the Old and New Testament. for to bind himself with an oath. the God of gods. yet it is most frequently in this form. if not something worse. and though it has a singular. 82:1. The word Elohim may be better derived from a word in the Arabic language. 1:1-3. who is the sole object of religious worship and adoration. my God. God: others are predicates. but as to the reasons why this name is given to the divine Being on that account. Son. by which he either calls himself. and from the construction of it. to redeem mankind. Son. "Elohim" is the first name of God we meet with in Scripture. taken from creatures. Jer. and some peculiar to each. El Elim. 1. is so harsh. in its singular Eloah. which. is indecent and unworthy of the dignity and majesty of God. some of them respect him as the subject. or attributed to him. whenever they swear at all (see Deut. and Spirit. angels. which signifies. and Spirit: others the relation of God to the creatures. nor is he ever called Eloah on that account. which signifies to "worship". as Zanchy [2] observes. that is never used of God when he is said to swear. the strong or mighty God. by which oath men are bound to God [4]. Some derive this word from a root. (Matt. Preserver. because he pronounces a man accursed who breaks his law. yet he was not accursed through any failure of his oath and covenant. 1 King 8:31) and is the business of judges. 1:1 it is thought [9] to denote a plurality of persons in the unity of the divine essence. Some respect the relation the divine Persons in the Godhead stand in to each other. as is not to be endured: and though Christ agreed to redeem men. and which may be observed in the word Beth-el. It is commonly rendered. which is sometimes used. and not he to them. "who is blessed for evermore". Both the singular and plural. but always another. and not them. 65:16). as Jehovah. Spirit. but on another account. which is no other than to imprecate a curse upon himself. which that word has not. as in (Gen. Governor. and were concerned in the creation of all things (Gen. "The house of God" (Gen. and certain it is. there are names of God in the Scriptures taken from one or other of his attributes. and is translated God. and of false deities. (Gen. 12:7. 1:1) and is most frequently used throughout the whole Old Testament. It is a word of the plural number. Another name of God is "El".nevertheless. and being joined with a singular verb. 4:10. nor angels. under a curse. nor persons deified after death. supposing it to be taken from the word signifying as above. some [3] of late. and which are properly said of him. as appears from the point "mappick". nor living men. if his oath and covenant are not fulfilled. which signifies to curse and swear. Father. as they in a shocking manner express it. so Cocceius [7]: or. and others are proper names.

"his grace is sufficient for them. 7:4) which he brought out of Egypt. creation and providence. the most high [11]. being the first and the last. see also Eccl. 5. and does. "the Lord of Sabaoth". and which is his throne. (Jud. Rev. it is first mentioned in 1 Samuel 1:3. Some choose to render it "sufficient". and he has a sufficiency for them. and dominion over all creatures. 11 but frequently afterwards. (Job 11:7. indeed he is "the lawgiver. as he was particularly of the armies of Israel. who destroyed the old world. 83:18. moon. and "Sabaoth" means "hosts" or "armies": the Lord is the God of armies on earth. nor does he need. and it well agrees with God. the "Lord". Ps. the most high. and is given to one of their deities. Ps. 14:18-20. 14). called Elioun. Jupiter. The heathens called their chief god. and is made mention of when this name of God is spoken of (Gen. 14:14. 8). This name was known among the Phoenicians. 5:8) or from the sublimity of his nature and essence.Being. because under the Lord they sometimes fight as the stars did against Sisera. 57:15. the destroyer". (Gen. (Gen. as it is sometimes wrongly understood. 15:3) and who gives success and victory on what side soever he takes: and he is the Lord of the hosts of the starry heavens. This name seems to be expressive of the all-sufficiency of God. where it is often mentioned. The Thunderer": and. 44:6. "Tonans. signifies the first in essence. even to destroy body and soul in hell. "the power of the Highest". in which high and holy place he. and the highest angels in heaven. (Job 9:4. 6:3) we translate it Almighty in both places. and for himself. and the Spirit. or sheds his blessings. which is his palace. the sun. from another etymology of this word before given. the singular of Elohim. dwells. and as if it was the same with "Lord of Sabbath". and appears in the works of his hands. and of the supply of his creatures from it. (Luke 1:32. deriving it from a word [15] which signifies to "destroy". 49:25). which. Hillerus [14] derives it from a word which signifies to pour out. 13) and is one of the names of the Messiah (Isa. to make himself completely and infinitely happy. whose darts are his thunderbolts (Job 6:4. and Diana. The next name of God we meet with is "Elion". he can. Isis. (Exo. with an everlasting destruction. 2:1. and which flow from him as from a fountain. 13:6. 22). the highest heavens. on his creatures. "Destruction from Shaddai. 145:15. 17:1) and to which reference is had. Sodom and Gomorrah. who pours forth. (Matt. power. or shed. (Ps. that being what creatures nourish their young with. deriving it from a word which signifies "a breast". and in all others. to which he is often compared: though others give a very different etymology of it. it is expressive of the supremacy of God. and is left untranslated in James 5:4 where the Lord is called. 56:1) or from his superiority. expert in it. 23:5) and by this military term. Another name of God is "Shaddai": under this name God appeared to Abraham. the high and lofty One. a man of war. having a sufficiency in and of himself. 5:20) 39 . over the highest personages on earth. 19. (Exo. 2 King 21:3. So Christ is called "The son of the Highest". 89:8. and fought their battles for them. which is out of the reach of finite minds." Others render it "Nourisher" [13]. (Isa. but "he opens his hand. and is the generalissimo of them. 4. in great plenty. called the host of heaven. and is incomprehensible. according to him. the firstborn of the Egyptians. or "God of hosts". that teacheth mens’ hands to war. as they are called. 3. for "Sabbath" signifies "rest". and it well agrees with him whose power is infinite and uncontrollable. 1:8) it is expressive of the power of God. and their fingers to fight. 16). (Gen. and satisfies the desire of all creatures. (see Exo. or "Thunderer" [16]. supply all the wants of his people. that is able to save and to destroy". And some render the word the "Darter". particularly in the book of Job. God not only fills mens’ hearts with food and gladness. Some of their deities are represented as full of breasts. not "Sabbath". perhaps. 97:9. previous to most of these instances. 18:13. nor can he receive any thing from his creatures to add to his happiness. (Isa. and went at the head of them. to which there seems to be a beautiful allusion in (Isa. and Pharaoh and his host: though God is so called. 35) and which name God has either from his habitation. Another of the names of God is. temporal and spiritual. so Ceres. from dv "a breast". 12:8) for though the words are somewhat alike in sound. and stars. where he keeps his court. the beginning and the end. 9:6). and gives them their meat in due season" (Acts 14:17. or "all-sufficient" [12] God. Hillerus [10] takes this to be a part of the word Eloah. they are very different in sense. Ps.

(Ezek. he bears up the pillars of the earth. denoting.and also of the airy heavens. and Elohim. "shall be". and therefore must be independent of them. (Isa. and so might be. he is not made. 2:10. and is very probably the tetraktuv of the Pythagoreans. from their very great awe and reverence of this name. as all things are made by the Lord. (Rev. God is so called. (Job 38:22. 83:18) because this name is predicated of God. (Gen. nor used in common. his name alone is Jehovah. since he is before all creatures. this is a name he takes to himself and claims it. 11) and the meteors. So the church is called "Jehovah-shammah". and takes vengeance on the wicked. their chief deity. and incommunicable to another. Hence Adonis. pleasure. perhaps. and which was. 15:2) and is commonly rendered Lord. it takes in all tenses. 9:24. according to Macrobius [21]. he says. and for which. as Adonai. and are called "the heavenly host". and even not to be read and written. and which is to come". (Ps. or the one on one side him and the other on the other. to guard him. 23. Hillerus [20] is most correct in rendering it "the Cause". he is a self-existent and independent Being. 1:4) or. with the heathens. as he did against the Egyptians and Canaanites. and "he upholds his saints with the right hand of his righteousness". and even his Son as man and mediator. are the artillery he sometimes brings forth against the enemies of his people. to destroy his and his peoples’ enemies (see 2 King 19:35). 1:6) and so Adonai is used of the Son. Exo. thunder and lightning. which cannot be said of any other: creatures owe their being to the arbitrary will of God. 32:1. "which is. as in Revelation 16:5 it comes from the root hyh or hwh which signify. (Mal. (Joel 2:7. 42:1). and therefore they substitute other names instead of it. and not to be pronounced. was called from thence Mahanaim. as a learned Jew [23] observes. 4:11). and not to be taken in vain. 111:9). because of his presence with her. It is written with four letters only. and ought to be served and worshipped. or "Adon". Hence the Spanish word "don" for "lord". from a superstitious abuse of it. the same with the sun. and yet. and the locusts that fly there are his army. Isaiah 6:8 compared with Acts 28:25. 110:1) and of the Holy Spirit. of his necessary and self-existence. (Ps. (Luke 2:13. they are at his command. So a king in the Greek language is called basileuv. (Exo. These are the creatures of God by whom he is adored and served. hence the Jews call it "tetragrammaton". earth. it may be. (Gen. for though it is sometimes spoken of another. 4:14). according to Deuteronomy 28:58 but every name of God is reverend. as he must needs be. and might not be. (Ps. and to come [24]: the words of the evangelist John are a proper periphrasis of it. but with relation to him. nor with any degree of levity. hence they are said to "encamp" about them that fear the Lord (Ps. and the several armies of them. 34:7). because he is the Lord of the whole earth (Zech. This might arise. Some think it has the signification of a judge [19]. present. see 1 King 22:19) the place where the angels of God met Jacob. or support of any thing [18]. and his name to be great and had in reverence in the four quarters of it. that the word for God is so written in almost all languages. and it is remarkable. assert it to be ineffable. all things are. snow and hail. that he is the God of the whole world. This name is expressive of God’s dominion over all his creatures. which are laid up by him against the day of battle and war. and for his will. He is the Being of beings. Another name of God is "Adonai". and sometimes employed in a military way. The Jews. all men move and have their being in him. when we say he is self-existent. because he is the basis and support of his people: and so God is the support of all his creatures. and he is the cause of theirs. past. and glory (see Rom. "God is the judge of all the earth". Rev. Isa. which no other is. and is expressive of the essence of God. 40 . as he pleased. as well as of the Father. for though he exists. by whom Bacchus is called [22] Ebon. Heb. or rather Edon. 7. "the heavens. originally. "he upholds all things by the word of his power". for God naturally and necessarily exists. one going before him. 42:8) and is peculiar to him. 41:10. 2) two hosts or armies. The famous name of God is "Jehovah". 6:3. and is a righteous one. it must not be understood as if he made himself. "to be". 6. Some [17] derive it from a word which signifies the basis. yet not singly and properly. 11:36. protects and defends good men. and will judge the world in righteousness at the last day. Though. as a necessary and self-existent being. 25. Adon is used in the plural number of God. all creatures have their beings from him and in him. is also the same with the sun. and the other behind him. by which they swore. and therefore cannot have his being from them. from which. who. Joshua 10:11) the angels also are the militia of heaven. but God exists in and of himself. prop. 48:35).

the Being of beings. "are as nothing before him. s." It seems to be of the same signification with Jehovah. who has a sovereign power and authority over all creatures. in Parmenide. and is translated "I AM that I AM". (Gen. c. and is expressive of the same things. immutable. Mastrict. "the Father of lights". Theolog. Heb. Ed. (Exo. or from one that signifies "to see". (Acts 10:36. "power and authority". who is not only to be stood in awe of by all the inhabitants of the earth. 40:17). "all nations". and almighty Being. and to be derived from the same word. less than nothing. as it sometimes is of idols. 31:53). in distinction from others. as they affirm: though each of them may be applied to the true God. So. and "a consuming fire" (1 John 1:5. "Before Abraham was I AM". (Ps. and all that is in them". according to Cocceius [25]. 8. for its constant course. 46:1) is light itself. (2 Chron. as either from a word which signifies "to run". 16:9. it comes from hay (Jer. 22. 41 . and agrees with God. The names of God in the New Testament are these two kuriov and yeov. and the object of religious worship and adoration. and the thoughts of them (Job 34:21. of his eternity and immutability. of the being and existence of God. The first is derived either from kurw. see Catcott’s Sermon. and of his faithfulness in performing his promises: our Lord has a manifest respect unto it. 87:7. "I am he that was. Though. and orders all things "in the armies of the heavens. 150:6. "to be" [28]. 9. and may signify the same. and self-sufficient. the object of their worship. is called. and to answer the purposes of his own glory. and the inhabitants of them. and I am he that is to come. 1 Cor. according to the council of his will". it is generally used of Christ. which seem to be calculated by the heathens for the sun. l. Isaiah 26:4. [4] Marckii Compend. the one is usually rendered Lord and the other God. who runs to the assistance of his people in distress. 6. [3] Called Hutchinsonians. is sometimes used in the Targum [31] for the true God. and even their hearts. who disposes of. to which it commonly answers. and alxd "fear". and what I have been. [2] De Natura Dei. 33:8) but more especially is to be feared with a godly fear by his saints. self-existent. their ways and works. 10. called The Supreme and Inferior Elahim. p. when he says. James 1:17. 2. l. "who is Lord of all". "Ejeh" is a name God gave as a name of his to Moses. yea. 1120. perhaps. 1 Sam. Some derive it from a word which signifies to dispose. 4. s. and so describes God as the object of fear and reverence. that is. by virtue of his creation of them. 4. 1. Theolog. and signifies the same as Jehovah. 16:7). and seeing all things.and sea. 8:6. 12:29) and sees all men. I am he that is now. though it may be only an abbreviation or contraction of the word Jehovah. he is eminently "the Being". From all these names of God we learn that God is the eternal. ENDNOTES: [1] oud' ara onoma estin austo. c. (Ps. the God of Isaac. or from one that signifies "to heat". and among the inhabitants of the earth. p. 5. which is mentioned in Psalm 68:4. Trismegistus apud Lactant. "the fear". 3:13. and which agrees with God. applicable to it. and all in comparison of him are mere non-entities. 14) and may be rendered. both internal and external. Leigh’s Critica Sacra in voce hla. 4:6). "I shall be what I shall be". 10:7) and signifies "decency". Heb. and denotes the essence or being of God. "Jah" is another name of God. c. Ps. having a property in them. c. 8. l. 1. "God". and the good of his creatures. Hillerus [27] renders it "I remain". he is the former and maker of all things. and so the true God. when he sent him to the children of Israel. Eph. 12:28) and fear sometimes takes in the whole worship of God. (John 8:58). is very different. 4. or shall be. or from kurov [29]. so the Jews [26] interpret it. and vanity" (Isa. The etymology of yeov. that is. it may be best of all to derive it from a word which signifies "fear" [30]. or what is meet and becoming. being the fountain of light and heat. Ficin. Institut. 9. always the same.

de plural. accendere". 16. [11] Sanchoniatho apud Euseb. 6. 63. 87. vel ayein "adurere. [23] R. p. p. p. in Deut. 15. [27] Onomast. l. 18. xxxii. 1. Dei. 1. 4. [16] So Schmidt in Job vi. 15. p. 2. 3. Yoma. 36. Alsted. ut supra.[5] T. p. No. 35. Sacr. existit". 258. 10. Scapula. p. vel a deov "timor". [17] Paschius in Dissert. so Clem. l. c. 248. Moreh Nevochim. fol. c. vel yeasyai. [10] Onomastic. de Selah. Schultens in Job i. [6] Lud. l. vel a yw "dispono". col. "sum". 859. [24] Buxtorf. p. [25] Lexic. Suidas: kuriw. 1. col. Joseph Albo in Sepher Ikkarim. 177. col. so Plato in Cratylo. Stromat. [22] Ibid. 8. de Selah p. p. [29] kurov. p. 273. 1. 261. 93. Theolog. par. 2. Ling. 21. "currere". [7] Lexic. 2. Clem. Al. Alting. divin. 2. [20] Onomastic. 3. [18] ynda "foundations". protrept. s. 6. [8] Stockii Clavis S. [9] Schindler. [13] Paschii Dissert. Elohim. quis rer. 6. often rendered sockets in Exodus. c. c. Dissert. 82. l. [26] Shemot Rabba. Sacr. 42 . p. Lexic. 4. fol. 256. [15] ddv "vastavit". s. 1. Scapula. Maimon. 78. xvii. c. Lexic. 260. Euterpe. 28. 283. praepar. Job xxxviii. p. "bases". 4. Maimon. 61. Capellus et alii. par. fol. These several etymologies may be seen in Zanchy de Natura Dei. p. Sepher Cosri. Hottingeri Smegma Oriental. "autoritas". 1. p. Noldius. in fine. 10. Bab. Sacr. Evangel. p. Alsted. so Philo. [31] Targum Hierosol. 123. [28] kurei. c. Herodot. Lexic. Haeres. Theolog. [30] apo tou yeein. Jarchi in Gen. Philo ut supra. l. 484. "cernere". 8. Al. 1093. Moreh Nevochim. [19] A Nwd "judicavit". [21] Saturnal. de Nomin. par. c. Buxtorf. kuriov. Pentaglott. Sacr. 52. "autoritatem habens". c. 1. s. [14] Onomast. Heb. 1. 254. 197. "est. [12] So Cocceius in Lex. c.

being "created. "the fountain of Deity". which is the same thing with nature. that they are self-existent. and as he is". Rom. I think. there will be no doubt. but then there must be a nature in him to which this is similar. are unsafe phrases. 2:6) which designs not any external form. and which is to be seen and understood by the visible works of creation. "Canst thou by searching find out God? Canst thou find out the Almighty unto 43 . (2 Peter 1:4) which. (Acts 17:29. 1:20. excellency. dwells bodily in Christ". This nature is common to the three Persons in God. This is what is called Divinity. they all enjoy it. as its author. that though the idols they had worshipped were not. nature. but the whole by each. (Isa. the Galatians. Essence. it is not a part of it that is enjoyed by one. and he is not only the express image of him. incomprehensible by us. especially in the present state. (Exo. which must not be thought to be "like to gold. which is most difficult of all: that "Nature" may be predicated of God. otherwise. equally. is what the apostle suggests when he says. he has the most excellent essence or being. as has been observed. understood. the Creator. by Nature. and is what. to comprehend the infinite Nature and Being of God. "by nature. as "all the fulness of the Godhead dwells in Christ". and as early one as the other. but not communicated from one to another. but what is infused and implanted in men in regeneration. and fully comprehended. yet there was one that was. Mention is also made of the "divine Nature". are sound in the doctrine of the Trinity. or man’s device". which are expressive of his essence or being. served them. which cannot be seen. he is said to be "excellent hyvwt in essence". these equally subsist in the unity of the divine essence. and jointly. were no gods". silver. 11:6) and essence is that by which a person or thing is what it is. is not the nature that is in God. so called. in its most exalted state. "in all its perfection and fulness. so in the holy Spirit. Col 2:9). after him. and a part of it by another. and "I am that I am". and exist together in the same undivided essence. that is its nature. and. and that he is "fons Deitatis". that the divine nature is communicated from the Father to the Son and Spirit. Deity. It is better to say. who.A Body of Doctrinal Divinity Book 1—Chapter 4 Of the Nature of God There is a nature that belongs to every creature. in which Christ is said to be. not merely of a like. indeed. but of the same nature. at least in order of nature. not only because it is from God. and his fellow". though in the future state saints will behold the face of God. be prior to whom the communication is made. but his internal Glory. and bears a likeness and resemblance to him. but it cannot be fully comprehended. and that without any derivation or communication of it from one to another. otherwise there would be an impropriety in denying it of them. and "see him face to face. but because it is the image of him. sees the other. which. 4:8) which implies. that is. or there would be no propriety in the denomination of it from him. or sculpture. and possess it as one undivided nature. or Godhead. and with respect to God. in a picture. somewhat of it may be apprehended. for he that communicates must. possess the same nature. which is difficult to understand. and perfections. it is the same with his "face". but one with him. indeed. and according to our conception of things. or stone. yet it is impossible for a finite mind. previous to this communication. indeed. and that he has a superabundant plenitude of Deity in him. this is contained in his names. so that he that sees the one. that he has a being or essence. graven by art. GOD. 23) that is. in which "Christ is equal with him. (Heb. cannot be perceived. and we are required to believe that he is. painting. and of the Father. (Phil. and so to God. The nature of God is. for God has no visible shape. they each of them partake of it. or to be in the similitude of any creature. so far as they are capable of. since they seem to imply a priority in the Father to the other two persons. who. "Jehovah". 28:29) for so the words may be rendered. I know it is represented by some. before conversion. and does exist. 33:20. in righteousness and true holiness". It is the same with the form of God. (Gal. is ascribed to God.

yet we should endeavour to get the best we can. but they did not know what he was. a body is to be seen and felt. threatenings. 11:27) and by which we are taught. 80:3) and sometimes his wrath and indignation against wicked men. among the papists. and that extension is one of his attributes: and a sort of people called Anthropomorphites. in a proper sense. wisdom. anger with them. and that we are. and motionless. and knowledge. and frame the best conceptions of him we are able. as the works of creation and providence. (Ps. An heathen philosopher being asked this question. yet Christ declared to the woman of Samaria. of his nature and perfections. since these are to be understood of him not in a proper. tell?" (Prov. It is no objection to this. Amos 9:8). whereas God fills heaven and earth: and was he of so huge a body as to take up all space. His "arms" and "hands" signify his power. he would not be the most perfect of beings. may be known by the light of nature. in the best manner. R. 1:21) they knew. or might know. concerned both with good men. see (John 1:18. 6:17). have no other notion of God. could he be omnipresent. in which all things are. saying "God is a spirit". nor if a body. Isa. he could not be the Creator and Governor of the world. cannot be in two places at the same time. but in an improper and figurative sense. somewhat of God. (Rom. Xenophanes. who have asserted. Isa. nor would he be invisible. and others. and deliver them out of their troubles. "for in him we live. 16:9. (Isa. to destroy them. and still more time. are opposed to one another. to remove every thing from him that is corporeal. both ancients and moderns. "The world". to protect and preserve them. a body is not every where. and of his nature. that matter is God. since angels. since this was given by the Son of God. (Gen. 27:8. and a reason of his dilatoriness being demanded of him. 2 Chron. and prophecies delivered out by him. and if a body. thus his face denotes his sight and presence. and move. (Ps. (Deut. 3:29. the more obscure it was to him. (John 4:22. his readiness to attend unto. that the parts of an human body are sometimes attributed to God. the object of spiritual worship. and knowledge. and that the whole universe is God. mistaking some passages of scripture. Joseph Albo. to God. are more excellent than bodies. or attribute of his. Ps. "what is his name". when that was up. such works as require contrivance. the heathen world. 15:3. the apostle Paul "declared" unto them. and the souls of men. and the 44 . or consists of bodily parts: and of heathens. for spirit. what God was? required a day to think of it. there was a God. and others. inactive. he asked a second. in our conceptions of him. affirm God to be incorporeal. and therefore if God was matter. 30:4) yet he??? whom the heathens "ignorantly worshipped". as well as his will. No: but then this does not forbid us searching and inquiring after him: though we cannot have adequate ideas of God. 19:13) sometimes his favour and good will. 31:3. promises. his acceptance of the persons and sacrifices of men. 1:20.perfection?" (Job 11:7). and have our being". Yet. 1. and without understanding. skill. 34:15. as he is. he replied. His "eyes" signify his omniscience and all-seeing providence. 23:16). (Acts 17:23) and though the Samaritans worshipped they knew not what. deny that God is a body. so much less of doing. Rev. (Lam. and perfectly knew his nature. description. 65:5. Pythagoras. and answer the requests of his people. 59:1). Sallustius. Matter is without consciousness. and the Stoics say. and non-acceptance of them. Isa. than of a grave old man: in this respect both Jews and Heathens have better notions. as there certainly is. honour and glorify him. and God is universal matter. which is inert. (Acts 17:28). Matt. and declaration of God. who bore the Christian name. "by wisdom knew not God". Luke 24:39) and yet there have been some. even the wisest in it. and so glorified him not as God. Maimonides. he is of a spiritual nature. or nature. "no man hath seen God at any time". is. But if God was matter. of the Jews. (Prov. that the longer he considered of the question. being spirits. That God is not a body. 20) and more by divine revelation. His "ears". is not capable of thinking. (Ps. but God is invisible and impalpable. 24) and this we may be sure is a true definition. and the manifestation of his love and grace. he has not an human forms. and denote some act and action. and the parts of it. wisdom. atheistically inclined. there would be no room for other bodies. and bestow good things on them. Jer. 8:21) or his disgust at them. what God. (Gen. that so we may serve and worship him. and as it is not capable of acting. 1:19. (1 Cor. His mouth is expressive of his commands. 18:8). ascribed an human body. 34:16. who lay in his bosom. His nose and nostrils. and the common people. he could not be the maker and mover of all things. and with bad men. for though it may with propriety be said. that is. as he is. "if thou canst. and body or flesh. 29:20.

indeed. "Peniel". (Ps. that a divine person has sometimes appeared in an human form. and therefore said to be. Heb. from everlasting to everlasting. and of his divine nature. and is therefore called the "incorruptible God". so called because invisible. and in other actions of his. inasmuch as a body was prepared in the council and covenant of grace. (Luke 20:36) the souls of men cannot be killed. Spirits are immaterial. (Job 10:4) but such as express what is suitable to spiritual beings in the most exalted sense. "God is invisible. and his wife. it has been by assuming another form. (1 Tim. yea. (Judg. yet. for as for the Father. It is one of the characters of God. 1:17. yet not of flesh. which are material. and strengthen their faith in it. The description of God. and go downwards to the earth: but rational spirits. made since the world was. and after the likeness of God. and very rarely used afterwards. it is a vulgar mistake that they are to be seen. 89:13. when as yet there was none of them". may be on account of Christ’s incarnation. 32:24. nor can see". 13:6. 118:16. whom no man hath seen. and is the Creator of these. and in a more eminent manner immortal than angels. and were presages of his future incarnation. "only hath immortality". no man ever saw his shape. to prepare the minds of men for it. they cannot be brought to destruction. for the Son of God to assume in time. are ascribed to God. 18:3). for having no matter about them. and underivatively. and dwells in light. but not of natural corruption: but God is not subject to corruption in any sense. that are capable of being divided and separated. that he is "immortal". By spirits. the reason why the parts of an human body are so often ascribed to God. though bodies. in which this image and likeness chiefly and principally lay. yet there are some excellencies in spirits. But then these were appearances of the Son of God in an human form. I understand not subtilized bodies. And the man that wrestled with Jacob till break of day. seeing man has a soul or spirit. and therefore called the place where he wrestled with him. blood. was no other than the Lord omniscient and omnipotent. angels die not. and whom "the heaven of heavens cannot contain". 102:27. and very piercing and penetrating. as a Spirit. extracted out of various things. so one of the men that came to Abraham. it may be. and are not every where: but God is an eternal. afford a sufficient argument to prove that there is something corporeal in God. infinite. in wisdom and knowledge: and though he has a body also. (Heb. an human one. which no man can approach unto. and bones. 1:1. Nor is it any proof of corporeity in God. and is the giver of it to others. 45 . 33:27). in the plains of Mamre. 104:4. 10:5. capable of moral corruption. and very ponderous ones. These are creatures of time.exertion of it. the former are called spirits. 1:17. &c. (Rom. have no corporal parts. 12:1) but God an uncreated one. as flesh. hands. Spirits are incorruptible. 2. as appears from the angels that sinned. Job 26:13. and finite beings. to raise their expectation of it. and so more transcendently. 30). Ps. 139:16). Deut. as in making the heavens and the earth. 6:16). (Gen. Nor will the formation of man in the image. 10:28) not consisting of parts. (1 Tim. (Luke 24:39) and though eyes. and. (Job 32:8. and the rather since these attributions were more frequent before the coming of Christ in the flesh. "all the members of it were written. 10. according to the idea of it in his eternal mind. So he that appeared to Manoah. (Gen. and immense Spirit. 18) with other instances that might be mentioned. they are. and in the book of God’s eternal purposes. (Ps. in its pure form? whenever they have made themselves visible. Heb 12:23) they are indeed created spirits. and the souls of men. angels. who ever saw the soul of a man? or an angel. and which was originally created in righteousness and holiness. he has it of himself. to inure them to ideas of it. God might. of which Jacob was sensible. 1:23) Spirits are immortal. teaches us to ascribe to God all the excellencies to be found in spirits in a more eminent manner. (Matt. Spirits are invisible. from the depravity of the souls of men by the fall. nor the wind and air. as the after discourse with him shows. from eternity. and to consider them as transcendent and infinite in him. form the body of the first man. "the Father of spirits". and the souls of men. nor the spirits of animals. (Heb. they are not liable to corruption. which may lead more easily to conceive somewhat of God. (Zech. which in continuance were fashioned. (John 5:37) and. die. 12:9). Zech. the face of God. was a divine person. 6:5. 5) and so are the latter. Ps.

and immortal. and serve to give us clearer ideas of his nature. for as the more spiritual a being is. the more perfect it is. of essential parts. there must be a composer. But besides these properties. Dan. and therefore must be before what is composed of them: all which is inconsistent with the eternity of God: nor would he be "infinite" and "immense". of which he is composed. have a principle of life. and does whatever he wills. and does not consist of parts. not in a physical sense. Some of the Heathens have acknowledged the invisibility of God. his spirituality involves his simplicity: some indeed consider this as an attribute of God. angels are commonly thought to be the living creatures in Ezekiel’s vision. wings are given. has life in and of himself. at least. and sculptures of them. as of essence and existence. as a body does. and to whom can he be likened and compared? (Deut. or are so many displays of it. they are living. for either these parts are finite. the most simple act. the more free they are from composition and mixture. from the invisibility of the soul of man. indeed. for what is composed of parts. is his nature. they are lively. and sovereign. (John 5:17. the composing parts. Spirits are active. the more simple and uncompounded it is: as even all things in nature are more noble. as a young man with wings at his shoulders. they can never compose an infinite Being. (1 John 4:16). and always works. or infinite. 46 . who puts the parts together. &c. as matter and form. mercy. will. besides. and because of their quick dispatch. is God himself. and depends upon the union of them. uncontrollable. if finite. in any sense. we learn that he is a simple and uncompounded Being. by which they approach nearer to God. would be prior to the compositum. 3. However. the soul of a man is? Nor can any describe the form and figure of an angel: as for the pictures. have a faculty of understanding things natural and spiritual. there is nothing passive in him. Spirits. 4:35). "His mercy is from everlasting to everlasting. no similitude was ever seen of him. of which men consist: nor in a "metaphysical" sense. God is all act. and absolutely the first Being. since what consists of parts. as matter. God is the living God.6:16) and therefore as no likeness and similitude of a spirit can be formed and taken. Spirits have the affections of love. however. there must be more infinities than one. is liable to alteration. was a lifeless lump of clay. are intelligent beings. are prior to his being a man: and. 147:6. 17). he works. or ever seen in the whole world. and God wills whatever he does. they are voluntary agents. weakness. when first made. (Gen. and swiftness. they are the fruit of mere fancy and imagination. paintings. as the body and soul of man. it is certain God is not composed of parts. and "all creatures live and move. as he is sometimes styled. Spirits have the power of willing. pity. If God was composed of parts he would not be "eternal". angels. and the union of them. Isa. and have their being in him". 115:3. God being a Spirit. unalterable. and affections. 40:28). and his spirituality also: and. (Ps. but when God breathed into him the breath of life. and more pure. in doing the errands and messages they have been sent upon. in any age. depends upon those parts. active. and so be dissolved and come to destruction. and can operate upon others. 4:12. and all created beings. in our conception of them. and if infinite. by which it is preserved: nor would he be "immutable". as a Spirit. and so it is. 46:5). and to be resolved into those parts again. co-exist with him. and the souls of men. as of kind and difference. there are others still more excellent in spirits. his will is boundless. and so the souls of men: the body of Adam. on them that fear him". (Ps. beside. them. as the souls of men on their bodies. "actus simplicissimus". In short. and mutability. there is no searching of it. they are such. which implies a contradiction: nor would he be "independent". and gives life to all creatures that have it. all which would argue imperfection. every attribute of God. God not only loves his creatures. of act and power: nor in a "logical" sense. since the composing parts would. he would not be the most perfect of Beings. and their natures. endowed with understanding. as soul and body. 2:7). the understanding of God is infinite. and at most but emblematical: because angels have appeared in an human form. Isa 40:18. therefore they are painted as young men. of which bodies consist: nor of integral parts. but "is love itself". substance and accident. so none of God: who can tell of what colour. and Aristotle argues the invisibility of God. (Ps. lie understands himself. form and figure. to be wrought upon. and are only so many ways of considering it. but never was such a creature in real being. "he became a living soul". and he pities them as a father pities his children. So no likeness can be formed of God. shape and size. 103:13. Acts 17:28). and bear a greater resemblance to him.

Nor is the simplicity of God to be disproved by the Trinity of Persons in the Godhead; for though there are three distinct persons, there is but one nature and essence common to them all, and which is not parted and divided among them, but is jointly and equally possessed by them; nor do these persons really differ from the divine nature and essence, nor from one another, but by their distinct modes of subsisting; so that they only distinguish and modify, but do neither divide nor compose the divine nature: nor is it to be disproved by the decrees of God; the decrees of God are within himself, and, as it is commonly said, whatever is in God, is God, and so are no other than God himself, as to the act of decreeing, though not with respect to the things decreed; and though they are many and various, as to the objects of them, yet not in God, who, by one eternal act, in his infinite mind, has decreed every thing that has been, is, or shall be; and is what Plato means by en kai polla, "one" and "many" in God; one, as to his essence; many, as to the ideas and decrees in it, which many are one: nor is it to be disproved by the attributes of God; for they are no other than God himself, and neither differ from one another, but with respect to their objects, and effect, and in our manner of conception of them; nor from the nature and essence of God; they are himself, and his nature; he is not only eternal, wise, good, loving, &c. but he is eternity itself, wisdom itself, goodness itself, love itself, &c. and these are not parts of his nature, but displays of the same undivided nature, and are different considerations of it, in which we view it; our minds being so weak as not to be able to conceive of God at once and together, and in the gross, but one thing after another, and the same in different lights, that we may better understand it: these several things, called attributes, which are one in God, are predicated of him, and ascribed to him distinctly, for helps to our finite understandings, and for the relief of our minds; and that we, with more facility and ease, might conceive of the nature of God, and take in more of him, as we can by parcels and piecemeals, than in the whole; and so, as a learned Jew observes, all those attributes are only intellectual notions; by which are conceived the perfections that are in the essence of God, but in reality are nothing but his essence; and which attributes will be next considered.

ENDNOTES: [1] Simonides apud Cicero. de Natura Deor. l. 1. [2] Sepher Ikkarim, l. 2. c. 6. [3] Hilchot Yesude Hatorah, c. 1. s. 5. ,6. [4] Apud Laetant. de Ira, c. 11. [5] Apud Clement. Stromat. 5. p. 601. [6] De Diis et Mundo, c. 2. [7] So Aristotle, Laert. l. 5, in Vita ejus. [8] Laert. l. 7. in Vita Zeno. [9] Philemon et Orpheus apud Justin. de Monarch. p. 104, 105. [10] De Mundo, c. 6. so Minutius Felix, in octavia, p. 35, 36. [11] aploun te einai, kai pantwn hkista thv eautou ideav ekba. nein, is simple, and least of all departs from his own idea, --remains alway simply in his own form, Plato de Republ. l. 2. p. 606. [12] In Philebo, p. 372, &c. et in Parmenide, p. 1110, &c.


[13] R. Joseph Albo in Sepher lkkarim, l. 2. c. 8. Book 1—Chapter 5 Of The Attributes of God In General, and of his Immutability In Particular.

The attributes of God are variously distinguished by divines; some distinguish them into negative and positive, or affirmative: the negative are such as remove from him whatever is imperfect in creatures; such are infinity, immutability, immortality, &c. which deny him to be finite, mutable, and mortal; and, indeed, it is easier to say what God is not, than what he is: the positive, or affirmative, are such as assert some perfection in God, which is in and of himself; and which in the creatures, in any measure, is from him, as wisdom, goodness, justice, holiness, &c. but the distinction is discarded by others; because in all negative attributes some positive excellency is found. Some distribute them into a "twofold order", first and second: attributes, or essential properties of the "first order", declare the essence of God as in himself, such as his simplicity and perfection, infinity and immutability; and attributes, or essential properties of the "second order", which though primarily and properly, and naturally, and infinitely, and in a more excellent manner are in God, than in creatures; yet secondarily, and in an analogical sense, are in them, there being some similitude of them in them, of which there is none of the former order in them; these are said to be life and immortality, blessedness and glory. Again, some are said to be "absolute", and others "relative": absolute ones are such as eternally agree with the essence of God, without respect to his creatures, and are expressed by his names, Jehovah, Jah, &c. relative ones are such as agree with him in time, with some certain respect to his creatures, and are expressed by his being their Creator, Governor, Preserver, Redeemer, &c. some are called "proper", as those before mentioned; and others "figurative", signified by the parts of the human body, and the affections of the mind, as observed in the preceding chapter: but the more commonly received distinction of the attributes of God, is, into the "communicable" and "incommunicable" ones; the incommunicable attributes of God, are such as there is no appearance or shadow of them in creatures; as independence, immutability, immensity, and eternity: communicable ones, are such as are common to God, with men; or, however, of which there is some resemblance in men, as goodness, holiness, justice, and wisdom; yet of these it may be said, that they are incommunicable, as they are in God, in whom they are infinite, and cannot, as such, be communicated to finite creatures: none but God is essentially, originally, underivatively, perfectly, and infinitely good, holy, just, and wise. But as God is defined a "Spirit" in scripture, as has been observed, I shall endeavour to sort the perfections and attributes of God in agreement with that: and with respect to his nature, as an uncreated Spirit, may be referred, besides his spirituality, and simplicity, already considered, his immutability, and infinity, which includes his immensity, or omnipresence, and eternity: and with respect to it as active, and operative, the life of God, and his omnipotence: and with respect to the faculties, as a rational spirit, particularly the understanding, to which may belong, his omniscience, and manifold wisdom; and the will, under which may be considered the acts of that, and the sovereignty of it; and the affections, to which may be reduced, the love, grace, mercy, hatred, anger, patience, and long suffering of God: and lastly, under the notions of qualities and virtues, may be considered, his goodness, holiness, justice, truth, and faithfulness; and, as the complement of the whole, his perfection or all-sufficiency, glory, and blessedness: and in this order I shall consider them. And begin with, The Immutability of God; which arises from, and is closely connected with his spirituality and simplicity, or is what agrees with him, and is necessary to him as a spiritual, simple and uncompounded Being. Immutability is an attribute which God claims, and challenges as peculiar to himself; "I am the Lord, I


change not" (Mal. 3:6). Mutability belongs to creatures, immutability to God only; creatures change, but he does not: the heavens and the earth, which he has made, are not always the same; but "he is the same for ever": the visible heavens are often changing; they are sometimes serene and clear, at other times covered with clouds and darkness, and filled with meteors, snow, rain, hail, &c. the face of the earth appears different at the various seasons of the year, and is particularly renewed every spring: it has undergone one great change by a flood, and will undergo another by fire; when that, and "the works that are therein, shall be burnt up; and the heavens, being on fire, shall be dissolved; and the elements shall melt with fervent heat"; and "new heavens", and "a new earth", shall succeed (2 Peter 3:10,12,13), to which changeableness in them, the unchangeableness of God is opposed: "All of them shall wax old like a garment, as a vesture shalt thou change them, and they shall be changed: but thou art the same, and thy years shall have no end" (Ps. 102:25-27). The sun in the firmament, that great luminary, and fountain of light and heat, in allusion to which, God is called "the Father of lights", has its parallaxes, or various appearances, at morning, noon, and evening; it has its risings and settings; and never rises and sets at the same point in the heavens one day in the year, but always varies a little; it is sometimes under clouds, and in an eclipse; but "with" God "is no variableness", parallagh, or a parallax; the sun, at certain seasons of the year, passes from one tropic, and enters into another, as well as casts shades on the earth; but with God there is "no shadow of turning", trophv, of a trope, or tropic; there is no mutation nor turning in him, nor shadow of any (James 1:17; Job 23:13), the inhabitants of heaven and earth are changeable, even the most excellent of them, angels and men: angels in their original nature and state, were subject to change, as the apostasy of many of them have shown; who have changed both state and place; they "kept not their first estate, but left their own habitation", being obliged to the latter, because of the former; for sinning against God, they were hurled out of heaven, and "cast down to hell, and delivered into chains of darkness, to be reserved unto judgment" (Jude 1:6; 2 Peter 2:4), the angels which stood when the rest fell, are now indeed become impeccable, and are firmly settled in their state of integrity; but then this is owing not to their own nature, but to the electing grace of God, in Christ, and to the confirming grace of Christ, their head, who is the "head of all principality and power" (1 Tim. 5:21; Col 2:10). Man, at his best estate, his estate of innocence, and integrity, was "altogether vanity": for though not sinful, yet being mutable, and left to the mutability of his will, which was his vanity, when tempted fell into sin; and though made upright, lost the rectitude of his nature; though made after the image of God, soon came short of that glory; and though he had dominion over the creatures, being in honour, he abode not long, but became like those he had the power over; and though placed in the most delightful and fruitful spot in all the globe, yet, rebelling against his Maker and Benefactor, was driven out from thence by him; and is now a creature subject to innumerable changes in life; diseases of various sorts seize his body, and change his beauty and his strength, and death at last turns him to corruption and dust; he is like the changeable grass of the field; flourishes a while, is then cut down, and withers away; but God and his "word endure for ever" the same (1 Peter 1:24, 25), good men are very mutable, both in their inward and outward estate: in spiritual affairs; in the frames of their minds, in the affections of their souls, in the exercise of grace, in their devotion and obedience to God, and worship of him: in temporal affairs; what an instance of mutability was Job, in his estate, in his family, and in his health and friends? well might he say, "changes and war are against me" (Job 10:17), and at length came to his great and last change, death; as all men must, even the best of men: indeed, in the future state, good men will be no more subject to change; their spirits will be made perfect, and sin no more, nor sorrow any more; and their bodies, when raised, will remain immortal, incorruptible, spiritual, powerful, and glorious; but this will be owing, not to themselves, but to the unchangeable grace and power of God: God only is in and of himself immutable; and he is unchangeable in his nature, perfections, and purposes, and in his love and affections to his people, and in his covenant, and the blessings and promises of it; and even in his threatenings. 1. In his nature and essence, being "simple", and devoid of all composition, as has been proved: the more simple and free from mixture and composition anything is, the less subject to change. gold and silver, being the purest and freest of all metals from composition, are not so alterable as others: spirits, being uncompounded, and not consisting of parts, are not so changeable as bodies; and God, being an infinite


and uncreated Spirit, and free from composition in every sense, is entirely and perfectly immutable: and since he is "eternal", there can be no change of time with him; time doth not belong to him, only to a creature, which is the measure of its duration; and began when a creature began to be, and not before; but God is before all creatures; they being made by him, and so before time; he was the same before the day was as now, and now as he was before; "even the same today, yesterday, and for ever": though he is "the ancient of days", he does not become older and older; he is no older now than he was millions of ages ago, nor will be millions of ages to come; his eternity is an everlasting and unchangeable "now"; "He is the same, and his years shall have no end" (Ps. 102:27; Heb. 13:8), and seeing he is "infinite, immense, and omnipresent"; there can be no change of place with him, for he "fills heaven and earth" with his presence; he is everywhere, and cannot change or move from place to place; when therefore he is said to "come down" on earth, or to "depart" from men, it is not to be understood of local motion, or change of place; but of some uncommon exertion of his power, and demonstration of his presence, or of the withdrawment of some benefit from them: but this will be considered more largely under the attribute of omnipresence, in its proper place. God is the "most perfect" Being, and therefore can admit of no change in his nature, neither of increase nor decrease, of addition nor diminution; if he changes, it must be either for the better or the worse; if for the better, then he was imperfect before, and so not God: if for the worse, then he becomes imperfect; and the same follows: a like reasoning is used by Plato, and by another ancient philosopher, who asserts that God is good, impassable and unchangeable; for whatsoever is changed, says he, is either for the better or the worse; if for the worse, it becomes bad; and if for the better, it was bad at first. Or if he changes from an infinitely perfect state, to another equally so, then there must be more infinites than one, which is a contradiction. Again, if any change is made in him, it must be either from somewhat within him, or from somewhat without him; if from within, he must consist of parts; there must be "another" and "another" in him; he must consist of act and power; there must be not only something active in him, to work upon him, but a passive power to be, wrought upon; which is contrary to his simplicity, already established; for, as a Jew well argues, what necessarily exists of itself, has no other cause by which it can be changed; nor that which changes, and that which is changed, cannot be together; for so there would be in it two, one which changes, and another which is changed, and so would be compound; which is inconsistent with the simplicity of God: if from somewhat without him, then there must be a superior to him, able to move and change him; but he is the most high God; there is none in heaven nor in earth above him; he is "God over all, blessed for ever". Nor is the immutability of the divine nature to be disproved from the creation of the world, and all things in it; as when it is suggested, God, from a non-agent, became an agent, and acquired a new relation, that of a Creator, from whence mutability is argued: but it should be observed, that God had from all eternity the same creative power, and would have had, if he had never created any thing; and when he put it forth in time, it was according to his unchangeable will in eternity, and produced no change in him; the change was in the creatures made, not in him the Maker; and though a relation results from hence, and which is real in creatures, is only nominal in the Creator, and makes no change in his nature. Nor is the unchangeableness of the divine nature to be disproved by the incarnation of Christ; for though he, a divine Person, possessed of the divine nature, was "made flesh", or became man; the divine nature in him was not changed into the human nature, nor the human nature into the divine, nor a third nature made out of them both; was this the case, the divine nature would have been changeable; but so it was not; for as it has been commonly said, "Christ remained what he was, and assumed what he was not"; and what he assumed added nothing to his divine person; he was only "manifest in the flesh"; he neither received any perfection, nor imperfection, from the human nature; though that received dignity and honour by its union to him, and was adorned with the gifts and graces of the Spirit without measure, and is now advanced at the right hand of God. Nor was any change made in the divine nature by the sufferings of Christ; the divine nature is incable of suffering, and is one reason why Christ assumed the human nature, that he might be capable of suffering and dying in the room and stead of his people; and though the Lord of life and glory was crucified, and God purchased the church with his own blood, and the blood of Christ is


his power eternal. and clash with one another. is himself. to them that fear him". And as he is "glorious" in "holiness". in his vast eternal mind. and unchangeably happy. are with consultation. "his mercy is from everlasting to everlasting. and it endures continually the same: and so is his grace. God is unchangeable in his perfections or attributes. as has been observed. 3:11) no new thoughts arise in his mind. the purposes of God are "within" himself (Eph. there is no unrighteousness in God. or are truly and faithfully performed. and nothing unforeseen ever can appear to hinder the execution of his intentions and determinations. he knew as much then as he does now. that neither can nor will do iniquity. 27. yet he was crucified in the human nature only. 2. to which the divine person gave virtue and efficacy. his counsels are "of old". &c. the purposes of God are always carried into execution. and his faithfulness he never suffers to fail. the knowledge of angels and men increases gradually. but not so the knowledge of God. and so are unchangeable: and besides. being "all-knowing". and excellent in working. Nor is the immutability of the decrees of God to be disproved by his providences. it can be neither increased nor lessened. 6:1).called the blood of the Son of God. present. and more unalterable than they were. that perfection never receives any tarnish. as often is in men. but is always illustriously the same. or change his counsels. for with him there is no such consideration: his "goodness". which are many and various. which are so with respect to creatures. and to come. from whence proceed the providences of God. and his blood was shed in that. "the counsel of the Lord stands for ever" (Ps. called "mountains" because of their immoveableness. as they appear in time. and which may seem to differ from. and upon mature deliberation: and such are the decrees of God. for all the changes in providence. his "counsels of old are faithfulness and truth". for instance. they are made with the highest wisdom by him. and the unbelief of men cannot make the faith or faithfulness of God without effect. or with respect to 51 . they are the mountains of brass Zechariah saw in a vision. they are like the laws of the Medes and Persians. Prov. providence. which has been exceedingly abundant. and his purposes are called "counsels". there is a purpose for everything. things past. which. 6:17). Isa. and what is in himself. he is as gracious and merciful as ever. unsearchable and past finding out. they are helps to our better understanding of it. there is no lack of wisdom. he is the same in his power as ever. 21:30. yet. nor in the least diminished. though there has been such a profusion of his goodness to his creatures. God has determined all that ever was. his nature and essence. that is. without any abatement. is. and a time for that purpose. and not one thing after another. no new decrees are made by him. because designs wisely formed by men. 3. and so he is unchangeably good. and at once. or shall be. his hand is not shortened. his "understanding is infinite". but received no change by all this. they are of no avail. his purposes and decrees. and mercy. are all beheld by him in one view. no new resolutions are formed in his breast. it is not exhausted. 14:24. 19:21. whatever devices and counter workings to them may be framed and formed. and he can as soon cease to be as to alter his mind. are immutable. can never be sullied. which is sometimes the case with men: and he is "able" to perform whatever he resolves upon. nor of power in him. 33:11. he is abundant in it. he cannot change from holiness to unholiness. through its union to it. grace. God is unchangeable in his purposes and decrees. and all his decrees are unchangeable. he is the just one. 1:9). and mountains of "brass" to denote their greater firmness and stability: immutability is expressly spoken of the counsel of God (Heb. in creation. though that has been displayed in various instances. and they are "eternal" (Eph. and immutable in every perfection. and the executioners of them (Zech. considering them separately. it is not in the power of men and devils to disannul them. for he knows and sees all things together. invariably the same: his "knowledge" is the same. all things come to pass according to the counsel of his will. and he is "faithful" to himself. it is still the same in him. even though men believe not. who is wonderful in counsel. though they are the same with himself. he sees and declares the end from the beginning. they are never frustrated. whether with respect to the world in general. and so many good and perfect gifts have been bestowed on them. his strength is everlasting. and serve particularly to illustrate the unchangeableness of it: thus. from righteousness to unrighteousness. he knows no more now than he did from all eternity. he abides faithful. 46:10).

for the strengthening of their faith in his love. and which he strongly expresses. for when the mind of God is not towards a people to do them good. 4. Heb. but thine be done". and forsakes them for a moment. into the depths of sin and misery. take away his lovingkindness in Christ from them (Jer. and other ordinances were fixed. yesterday. to give them to them. Ezek. rites. until the time of reformation. Ps. this hindered not. 16:6-8. nothing can separate from it. "his love to them is from everlasting to everlasting". to humble them before him. "He is in one mind. ordered the children of Israel. and gave a full proof and demonstration of it. in his transgression. what he would have observed and done. though he visits their transgressions with a rod and stripes. were all according to the unchangeable will of God. and promised them. than arguments against it. but notwithstanding that. though the special objects of it fell with Adam. and when he bestows blessings on a praying people. to observe certain laws. and it is their duty and privilege to ask them of him. but then the delivery of the one. make any alteration in his love. Afflictions are no evidence of a change of affections to them. and looks as if God intended to bestow the good things asked. God is unchangeable in his love and affections to his people. for the great love with which he loves them. the whole Mosaic economy and dispensation. swears he will not be wroth with them. and yet he was fully persuaded of the unchangeable will of God in them. without any variation in his own heart. and never alters. by Moses. saying. Job was a remarkable instance of changes in providence. and the abolition of them. "not my will. Nor do the hidings of God's face from them after conversion. however different the manifestations of it may be to them. whereby these were removed and laid aside as useless. and then to turn away his anger 52 . and of his own sovereign will and pleasure. and ceremonies. Nor is it to be disproved by the different declarations of the will of God. and it is as unchangeable as himself. for though he has purposed. in whom he takes the utmost complacency and delight. 31:18. God. and who can turn him? and what his soul desireth. to what purpose then is prayer? it is answered. and many such things are with him" (Job 23:13. as it is a time of life. and to cause them to seek his face and favour. prove any change in his love to them. which is not to be altered by it. yet he will be sought unto. though he may thoroughly chastise them. Rev. he ever rests in his love. yet he deals with them but as children. it forebodes well.individuals. and the time of their continuance. that is. even while they were yet sinners: nor does the sinful state and condition they were brought into. he looks upon them in all the impurity of their natural state. and for ever": the fall made no difference in it. in the most tender manner. but God continued his love. and says to them. 3:19. he "quickens them when dead in trespasses and sins". and this time. and. it cannot be turned to them by the most fervent and importunate prayers of those who have the greatest interest in him (Jer. has mercy on them. for the communication of the blessings of his goodness to his people. 14). the heavens and earth were shaken. like Ephraim. God's rebukes of them are rebukes in love. even that he doth. Should it be said. chastenings are rather proofs of sonship. and. Titus 3:3-5). "live". and not in wrath and hot displeasure. as if he was inclined and turned by them: but for his own sake. he is love itself. to remain till Christ's second coming. he does not utterly. 15:1). and manifested it in sending his Son to be the propitiation for their sins. and the settling of the other gospel ordinances to remain to the end of the world. Nor is the unchangeableness of the love of God to his people to be disproved by his being said to be angry with them. 54:7-10). and then there was a disannulling of them. Nor is prayer any objection to the immutability of the divine will. 33). and with lovingkindness. 5. and. 20. "the same today. to show his resentment at their sins. in the different dispensations of law and gospel. for he performeth the thing that is appointed for me. and which should be asked always with submission to the will of God. yet with great mercies he gathers them again to himself. it is a time of open love (see Eph 2:4. nor at all. they are his dear sons and daughters. in a little seeming wrath. and commended it. and declares his lovingkindness to be more immoveable than hills and mountains (Isa. as they may think. and when they are blessed with a spirit of prayer. for though he hides his face from them. to bring them to a sense of them. it is not for the sake of their prayers. severely. in the delivery of Christ to death for them. and pleasant children. 12:6-8. and continue in from their birth to their conversion. 89:32. provided. are according to his unchangeable will. this is the way and means God has appointed.

8:30). Nay. in Jerusalem. nor revokes. he threatened them with. Jacob was angry with his beloved Rachel. and it is not in the power of men and devils to reverse them (Rom. they judge he is angry. Wrath and hatred are opposed to love. When it is spoken of him. who frown and turn away. is not performed. and that according to his unchangeable will. or with a condition: now that anything promised or threatened. and there should be his "rest for ever" (Ps. the promises of the covenant. 23:20). and never taken away. they conclude he has turned himself from the fierceness of his anger (Ps. and a father may be angry with his beloved child. but the secret will of God was. 18:8. the Lord doing somewhat similar to men when they are angry. and love him not the less. after the manner of men. and according to our apprehension of things. were according to his unchangeable will (John 3:4. and faithful to perform them. flow from the sovereign grace and mercy of God. but his operations and providences. and kept his laws and ordinances (Isa. God repenting of what he had threatened. he doing like what men do. the outward declaration ordered to be made to him. 1:19). are not always done. but not at their persons. and manifests his pardoning grace and mercy. that he should "die and not live". and were saved from ruin. and their deliverance. to be disproved. his disease being mortal. that is. and stands fast with him. to be disproved by repentance being ascribed to him. and allpowerful. was no change of his will. as well as the good he has promised. a condition is either expressed or implied (see Jer. 15:29). Isa. 23:19. as a potter. and are sure and firm. must be denied. that what is promised or threatened. by observing. Nor is the immutability of God. and to make use of means. He threatened the Ninevites with the destruction of their city within forty days. but they failing herein. 9:14. breaks it to pieces: so when it repented God that he had made man on earth. but then it was provided they were obedient to God. 1 Sam. it is as immoveable as a rock. as he did. 11:29. and besides. this is said after the manner of men. which are never in the heart of God towards his beloved ones: besides. which. are irreversible. but if with a condition. who is all-wise. 14). he destroyed man from off the earth. that cannot lie. though a change of his outward conduct towards them. 10). undo what they have done. absolutely and unconditionally. Nor is the case of Hezekiah any objection to the immutability of God. 6:6. 12:1). This was made with Christ from everlasting. God is unchangeable in his covenant of grace. when he does not like a vessel he has made. he departed from them. the change will appear to be not in God. Nor is the unchangeableness of God in his word. for both their repentance. and gave it to another: in doing which he did not change his mind. all-knowing. whom he had created. which are gone out of his mouth and lips are unalterable. and can never be broken. and being once bestowed. 3). such as are blessed with them are always blessed. he watches to bring the evil he has threatened. 1:20. and abode in his service and worship. and threatened evil. being according to his unchangeable will. 132:13. even God is unchangeable in his threatenings. but in men: and in all such cases where God does not what he said he would do. and when God frowns in his providence. when they repent. Thus God promised that he would dwell in Zion. according to the nature of second causes. by God. is either absolutely and unconditionally. and Saul king (Gen. as he must have done quickly. that the promised good. whether in a way of promise or threatening. and took away the kingdom from Saul and his family. whereby the unchangeable 53 . that is. for anger is not opposite to love. but no change of his will.from them (Isa. was. when he smiles upon them again. Jer. when it only shows his discipline at their sins. that they were made before the world were. 85:2. "all the promises are yea and amen in Christ". 5. and deserts his people for a while. 1 Sam. unless they repented: they did repent. and eat the good of it. 15:11). the blessings of it are "sure mercies". For it should be considered. to set him a praying. and are what he never repents of. which is to be taken in a limited sense. it is to be understood improperly and figuratively. for in some sense it is absolutely denied of him (Num. and the people of Israel should dwell in their land. what has been said of purposes may be said of promises. which implies neither contradiction nor change: the outward declaration was made to humble Hezekiah. and that condition not performed. in the temple. 9. that he should live "fifteen years" longer. 10). and then. in his promises and threatenings. and suffered them to be carried captive: in all which there was a change of his dispensations. and he assuredly performs the one as the other (Dan.

He is the "first Being".will of God was accomplished. the two branches of Infinity. he would be finite. finite: but God is an uncreated Spirit. Aristot. so he is eternal: and that he is in this sense infinite appears from his spirituality and simplicity. if he would. so not bounded by it. these are the two branches of it. unmeasurable or immense. it is infinite. l. for body. and so gave to his sufferings and death. de Diis. [2] De Republica. and sometimes in another. 606. or there is any end of his days. who could. [4] R. but not he by them. was he. and so not to be limited to it. annihilate them. an infinite value and virtue. it is finite. he is not a body. 2. l. neither shall there be after him. and so. 1. because God is the object of it. The next attribute of God to be considered is. and not eternal. 9. and they are definitively in some place. all creatures depend on him. the meaning is. Sallust. pav yeov ametablhtov. 5. which none but an infinite person can give. 54 . ENDNOTES: [1] to yeion ametablhton anagkaion einai. angels. but not he in them: men. c. and his "years shall have no end": immutability infers both omnipresence and eternity. 43:10 44:6) and therefore there is none before him nor above him. but he is the "same". that he is unbounded and unlimited. but God is a Spirit: though this barely is not sufficient to prove him infinite. though they will have no end. de Coelo. which is owing not to themselves. yea. are checked and limited by him. and move. all things are "of" him. l. whereby justice had from them an infinite satisfaction. and have their being in him. His Omnipresence And Eternity. and requires an infinite satisfaction. c. good and bad. and by it. in his human nature united to him. This attribute chiefly respects and includes the "omnipresence" and "eternity" of God. and have a beginning. and which Christ is in his divine nature. A Body of Doctrinal Divinity Book 1—Chapter 6 Of The Infinity Of God. and existed without it. he is not bounded by space. as angels. We commonly say that sin is infinite. but he depends on none. p. and the souls of men. or is moved from place to place. he would be mutable: and if he rose from non-existence into existence. and he is not bounded by time. his "Infinity". on all accounts. that supports them in their being. consisting of parts. when we say that God is "infinite". l. this attribute has been already established. or matter. before established. and from whom all others have their being. he would not be unchangeable. for as an act. and the truest reason that can be given for it is. 2. but to the power of God. was before all time. 1. and "to" him. but if he changes place. unsearchable and not to be comprehended. being the act of a finite creature. He is "immutable". c. Joseph Albo in Sepher Ikkarim. these are created spirits. [3] Sallustius de Diis et Mundo. 2. but with respect to the object against whom it is committed. "through" him. to limit and restrain him: he is an "independent" Being. he is the first and the last" (Isa. and so not everywhere. c. and therefore is everywhere. and was before space or place were. is a creature of time. or is sometimes in one place. and is limited to a certain place. "Before him there was no God formed. as the first cause and last end of them: all creatures live. because there are finite spirits.

to all men on earth. 3). its two chief branches are "omnipresence" and "eternity". 11:3). to the innumerable stars in the lower ones. or his ubiquity. As there is an height. for if God is infinite. his immensity is his magnitude. sooner may all the waters of the ocean be put into a nutshell. he is "a God of knowledge" or "knowledges". so that there is "no searching of his understanding" (Isa. a length and breadth in the love of God. 145:3). nor can there be any addition to it. His "goodness" is infinite. infinity is an attribute peculiar to God. it is infinite. and all that is in them. with him. men. but to all things possible to be made. what canst thou know?" If the heavens above cannot be measured. and all things richly to 55 . yea. unbounded with respect to space and place. that it is "unsearchable" (Ps. and comprehends all things that are. 147:5). which. but he is not to be comprehended by finite minds. that cannot conceive of him as he is. it is boundless. 11:33). though ever so numerous. the earth. to the innumerable company of angels in the highest heavens. to angels and glorified saints. in comparison of him. to whom he does not leave himself without a witness of his kindness to them. and "the thunder of his power who can understand?" Somewhat of him may be apprehended. supporting and sustaining them. and therefore infinite. or pure and righteous. 1:20. and. but his nature and essence can never be comprehended. His "understanding" is infinite. for nothing but infinite power could ever have made a world out of nothing (Rom. that is. as is expressly said (Ps. he is the only and the all-wise God.18. and consequently in his nature. and his making of that. and therefore he must be near them. which belong to his infinity. the most holy creatures are impure. he is infinitely perfect. as the heaven. and of his "greatness" it is said. 28). 6:2. Isa. and which is not to be sounded by mortals (Rom. as has been observed. "my goodness extends not to thee" (Ps. his omniscience is "too wonderful" for them. 1. the apostle ascribes. he is abundant in it. We rightly give him titles and epithets of "immense" and "incomprehensible". which God could have made if he would. as has been observed. not only to all that are in being. and the ends of them. in all ages. it reaches to. there is a bayov. but in his providence. though there has been such a vast profusion of it from the beginning of the world. but is measured by none. which will be next considered. perhaps. 3:18). he that has made one world. then he must be everywhere. and infinitely blessed and happy. a depth. who are finite creatures. and it endures continually. not only in the creation of all things. is but folly (Job 4:18). not only cannot be comprehended and circumscribed by space. and helps to our better understanding it. who partake of his special favours. must be "incomprehensible". by observing some of these distinctly. be strongly concluded from it. He is "immense". and are separately considered by us. and the foundations of the earth beneath cannot be searched out. "for the heaven of heavens cannot contain" him. upon the whole. 16:2). God is infinite in his "purity. which is everywhere: as appears. how should he be measured or searched out to perfection that made all these? (Job 11:7-9. and cover themselves before him (Job 4:17. a "depth". Jer. there is no end of his power. it must. and justice": there is none holy as he is. of all things that are knowable (1 Sam. could have made millions. but "he upholds all things by his power". immeasurable (Eph. so there is in every attribute of God. with him nothing is impossible. these he sees and knows in his eternal mind. unmeasurable. 2:3).God is infinite in all his attributes. for not only the creatures have their being in him. proves his "eternal power". The omnipresence of God may be argued from the distributions of his goodness to all. and which is the argument the apostle uses to prove that he is not far from them (Acts 17:27. he measures all things. we may have a clearer idea of the infinity of God. The same may be said of his knowledge and wisdom. as it is included in his infinity. The "Omnipresence" of God. and preserves them all. as a relief to our mind. no not in a state of perfection. or in place. who can take his dimensions? they are "as high as heaven. to both. and in comparison of him the wisdom of the wisest of creatures. 31:37). and this is to be proved from his power. he provides for them. and the heaven of heavens. it is infinitely perfect. his nature. to the innumerable inhabitants of the earth. Heb. himself. what canst thou do? deeper than hell. there is no end of it. they consist in him. than that the infinite Being of God should be comprehended by angels or men. his power has never been exerted to the uttermost. and to the innumerable creatures that swim in the sea. the angels. 40:28). all creatures partake of it. is a branch of it. the earth is full of it. and. The power of God is infinite. and from him. and strictly connected with it. and fowl. his infinite power. giving them food and raiment. and which are indeed. in short. and beasts. and therefore. holiness. it still abounds: there is no end of it. that is. that is.

this could not be vouchsafed to all the saints. "If I take the wings of the morning". or than himself. in the most remote islands of it. there God is in all the glory of his Majesty. there God is watching over their dust. and is a bed to saints (Job 17:13). which is invisible and incomprehensible (Ex. his habitation. then the Psalmist goes on to enumerate all places that could be thought of to flee to. he is with them. instantly. and face signifies the essence and nature of God. is everywhere. indeed. wisdom. and yet God was there. And as he is everywhere by his power and providence. as man. as Buxtorf observes. because he is not local. behold thou art there": whether the place where the wicked are turned. and knowledge. if there is no going from him. a mind that is diffused throughout all the parts of the world. he is so called because in every place where the righteous are. and Sallustius observes. as essentially considered: or by his Spirit may be meant himself. and opens his hand and plentifully and liberally communicates to them: as well as from his universal government of the world by his wisdom. or in anyone of the divine Persons. since the same nature is in the one as in the other. and all the churches. at the same time. at its rising. and all suppose his omnipresence: the heathens acknowledge this attribute. which is sometimes the sense of the word used. and they further say. and there is his gracious presence with good men. or divine Majesty. 51:11). preserving it from being lost. at different places. and "he is the Governor among the nations". he could not be in whatsoever place two or three are gathered together in his name. "If I make my bed in hell. but gives place to all. The presence of God may be observed in a different manner. displays the glory of his majesty to angels. dwelling in them. expresses it. and so the Jews themselves say. there is his palace. or as in any of the divine Persons. in all ages. regenerating. 4:6. for though this is to be understood of his gracious presence. 33:20). being all before him. and. or as the rays of the sun. "Whither shalt l go from thy Spirit?" which. and the apostate angels cast. and their actions: and since these attributes of power. by an antiphrasis. This attribute is most clearly expressed in several passages of Scripture. unless he was omnipresent. to fit them for himself in glory. if there is no going from God. and fly as fast as the morning light.enjoy. the Jew. and of the Son. yet unless he was omnipresent. "place". and supporting them in it. for "God is a Spirit" (John 4:24). he must be everywhere by his essence. then God. 28:20). and he present with them. there God is sustaining them in their being. full and sufficient to himself. or be in the midst of the candlesticks. Anaxagoras calls him an infinite mind. was here on earth (John 1:18 3:13). if it is to be understood of the third Person. He adds. there is his glorious presence in heaven. and continuing the punishment inflicted on them: or whether the grave is meant. for he is without the world. autov eautw topov he is place. "If I ascend to heaven. and the spirits of just men made perfect. which soon reaches the furthest parts of the earth. but his essential presence. comforting. are no other than his nature. who. giving them being. as in Europe. and goes through all nature. pouring in his wrath into their consciences. and which is most clear from the omnipresence of the divine nature in Christ. to the end of the world (Matthew 18:20. 7. or as Aben Ezra. as particularly in Psalm 139:7-10 where the Psalmist asks. the Spirit of the Father. and Pythagoras defines him. essentially considered. is omnipresent. he can see and judge through the dark clouds. he is present among them. who is not contained in any place. or in the uttermost parts of 56 . or with his ministers. Now if God. so in America. but not the world his place. personally considered. for a good man would never seek to flee from that. which is everywhere. "and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea". carrying on his work of grace in them. for his kingdom rules over all. that he is the place of the world. so he is by his knowledge. in a most eminent manner. which dart from east to west. then not from them. that he is not contained or comprehended in place. sanctifying. because every place is full of his glory. says. agreeable to which Philo. personally considered. the churches. and they call God Mwqm. So the Jews say the Shecinah. then not from him. and there is his powerful and providential presence with all his creatures. where he. in order to raise it up at the last day. was in heaven. nor is there anything he more earnestly deprecates than to be cast away from it (Ps. and his throne. and fills all worlds. and refreshing them. nothing being more desirable to him. thou art there": could he by any means climb up to heaven. it is in the Hebrew text "from thy face". must be so. when he. "Or whither shall I flee from thy presence?" not his gracious presence. all things are naked and open to him. as when they are worshipping in different parts of the world. the kingdom of nature and providence is his. and behold all the inhabitants of the world. though he is in the highest heaven. as a divine person.

and thy right hand shall hold me": there should he experience the providential goodness and special favour of God to him. is in Isaiah 66:1. Ex. by going beyond sea. "Am I a God at hand. at the east of the garden of Eden. Nor such passages which relate the departure of God from men. "Can any hide himself in secret places. to discountenance or contradict it. and near him. 7. Nor such as speak of the Lord not being with wicked men. that is. as with good men. as Cain and Jonah are said to do (Gen. where he and his brother had sacrificed. and could meet with him by sea and by land. 4:16. and as present with the one as the other. especially in the dark and distant places of the earth: "Do not I fill heaven and earth. and their desires that he would return to them.the western shore. but he soon found his mistake. that he is said to be in heaven. because he fills all places. and treads on the other: "Where is the house that ye build unto me?" or where can a house be built for him? what place can be found for him he is not possessed of. is not local and is infinite. that. and the return of it. by destroying that. and the other cities. he is both. at the cry of the sin of Sodom. But nowhere is the Omnipresence of God more expressly declared than in Jeremiah 23:23. and was not present to see what was done below. attended with thunder and lightning. an altar. or exertion of his power. in heaven and in earth (Acts 7:47-50). the effects of his power and goodness. as at Babel. Jonah's fleeing. 24:16). but with his nature and essence. by his gracious presence: but this hinders not. supposing him to be limited and confined to heaven above. and he will not be with you" (Num. the symbol of the divine presence. but that he is with them by his omnipresence and power. by giving the law out of the midst of fire. the deprivation of that. but persons and things on earth. 14:42. as if he was at their elbow. proving the Omnipresence of God. and declining to go on his errand. produces this to prove. John 1:3). Hence the Jews call God by the name of "Makom". as to prosper and succeed them. 45:22. since the ark of the covenant. which may be thought at hand. and is contained in none. or from the public place of worship. 20). and those at the greatest distance. 14:44). nor had they any reason to believe that God would be so with them. saith the Lord?" not only with inhabitants. by confounding the language. and on mount Sinai (Gen. 10:1. and therefore adds. at Sinai. Matthew 5:9). when they acted contrary to his express command: nor is God ever in such sense with wicked men. and limited to them. as from Samson and Saul (Judges 16:20. the heaven is my throne. and that men pray unto him as their Father in heaven (Ps. since these only respect his gracious presence. 19:18. without any hope of success in war: nor such portions of Scripture which express the desertions and distance of God from his people. the manifestations of his love and favour. 11:5. which may seem. was withdrawing himself from the service of God. saith the Lord. 18:21. supporting them in their being. and the withdrawment and renewal of them. not such as speak of mens' departing and fleeing from his presence. that I shall not see him. cannot be included in them. for Cain only went either from the place where he and the Lord had been conversing. In what peculiar sense God may be said to be in heaven. remained in the camps and went not with them (Num. and that God was everywhere. 51:11). Isa. "The Lord is not among you. and he sees and knows all that is done by them. 80:14. and with all things. "even there shall thy hand lead me. 28:15). courage and greatness of soul from the other. particularly what Moses said to the disobedient Israelites. Likewise. and confusions of his mind. where some of them sometimes are. Another passage of scripture. 24. has been observed already. which exceeds all bounds of place and space. nor is he ever 57 . So immense is he that he sits upon the one. since this only respects the withdrawment of uncommon bodily strength from the one. 115:3. he should avoid being urged to his duty. and that to be his habitation. "Thus saith the Lord. see a like enumeration of places in Amos 9:2. namely. the proto-martyr. and not cast them away from his presence (Ps. and upholds his people at the ends of the earth. as at the building of Babel. foolishly imagining. not such that represent God as descending from heaven. 43) which he might very truly say. 3. he not only observes persons and things in heaven. place. where were the symbol of the divine presence. 1 Sam. at first sight. distractions. 63:15. leaving him to the fears. since he is everywhere. he is as near to. and the earth is my footstool". and does not dwell in already? Stephen. and wisdom and prudence. for these only denote some more than ordinary manifestations of his presence. Nor is this to be disproved by other passages of Scripture. saith the Lord?" As some might foolishly imagine. and not afar off?" yea. "that the most High dwelleth not in temples made with hands. and where they have his presence (Isa. who leads. at Sodom. guides. And whereas it is urged against the omnipresence of God.

though not as to substance. 7:12. and yet. his nature. and not before. is that which is without beginning and end. and is without succession. 4:17. yea. since bodies only touch them and are capable of being defiled by them. and even eternal. 1:17). 21:6). though they will have no end. 23). (Jude 1:7. but limited. as the angel in the filthy den of lions where Daniel was. Titus 1:2. 2 Cor. as angels. 17:7. form. the earth is said to abide. in which he must be if omnipresent. at most. and the "King eternal" (Gen. ``Eternity is the interminable or unbounded and perfect possession of life whole together. and the souls of men. granted in the everlasting covenant of circumcision. Thales being asked what God was. what has neither beginning nor end. 1 Tim. He is often called "the everlasting God". Jer. was not. "in which there is no former nor latter. Where did he dwell then? I answer. an house eternal in the heavens" (1 Peter 5:10. and everlasting punishment. but during life (1 Sam. 66:1). and not be removed for ever (Ps. Heb. Deut. answered thus. being creatures of God. than the sun is. 9:3. and have both a beginning and an end. is peculiar to God. they are no more: indeed. and "for ever". which must 58 . 10:8. and not eternity. or does not proceed in a succession of moments one after another. Eternity. which is eternity. Matthew 25:41. being immaterial and immortal. 9:15). infinite. and this is what the schools call "aeviternity". the temple built by Solomon is said to be a settled place for God to abide in for ever. 18:8. In himself. The "Eternity" of God belongs to his infinity. goes on in a succession. so neither can the heaven of heavens contain him (1 King 8:27). though he is not contained in any place. an eternal inheritance. 16:26. as distinct from eternity: thus angels. 5:1.11. 1:28). by its rays striking on a dunghill. 57:15). have a beginning. only respects the year of jubilee (Ex. and yet both are now at an end (Gen. for as he is not bounded by space. that he would put his name in it for ever. Some creatures and things are said to be everlasting. and it should be his rest for ever. 33:27. and so this attribute of omnipresence. 132:14). Ps. as not on the earth. are sometimes used in an improper sense. so neither by time. 10:10. though they have no end. "Before the mountains were brought forth. yea. 104:5. And the misery of the wicked is signified by suffering the vengeance of eternal fire. eternal life. from everlasting to everlasting. were the same then as now: and should it be asked. 57:15). 4:39. and is opposed to time. his throne will be for ever and ever (2 Sam. and elsewhere (see Deut. even created ones. and is proper to them. who can no more be affected by such means. Rom. it being without motion". Sometimes this phrase "for ever". Eternity.said to be in heaven "only". nor succession of times. and have been long since abolished (Num. nor order. figure. so he only has eternity. Isa. though. 21:33. and began when creatures began to be. The objection from the pollution of the divine Being. if understood spiritually.19. The happiness of the saints is called eternal glory. and so are improperly called eternal. 2. and is said to inhabit it (Isa. and present use.16). 90:2). as the everlasting possession of the land of Canaan. "eternal. eternity itself (1 Sam. and therefore eternal. not spirits. nor the souls of men that are in filthy bodies. 15:29). the thrones of David and Solomon are said to be established for ever. 1:4). 46). or ever thou hadst formed the earth and the world. 40:28. and. yet as to quality. he was before there was any space or place. Isa. thou art God" (Ps. in this sense. which has a beginning. by everlasting fire. but in many places to be on earth also. if taken in a literal sense. in his own immensity and eternity (see Isa. properly so called. Eccl. 15:15. and yet it has been demolished long ago (1 King 8:13. as David's Son and Antitype. and has an end: it is the measure of a creature's duration. yet these have a beginning. through sordid and filthy places. These words. 8) the rites and ceremonies of the law of Moses are said to be ordinances and statutes for ever. yet both that and the heavens shall perish. everlasting". And which Boetius expresses in a few words. which have a beginning. he himself says. and yet they were designed to continue but for a time. and uncreated Spirit. as he only hath immortality. much less God a pure. "eternal weight of glory.'' And is thus described. scarce deserves any regard. as of things which are of a long duration. which only belongs to God. and the souls of men. shall never die. A Jewish writer defines it.

The knowledge God has of all things is from eternity. The "mercy" of God 59 . and which they truly call God. there would not be a second. He is the "Creator" of all things. So the Son. His eternity may be argued from a state of "non-existence" he must have been in. and so be God. 2a2. 1:20). or from everlasting: this is put by way of interrogation (Hab. 41:4. several of which are said to be eternal. and. 9:14). nor a third. let his beginning be when it may. "the eternal Spirit" (Heb. then he is without a cause. as from his "necessary self-existence": the existence of God is not arbitrary. in comparison of an eternity past. "Known unto God are all his works from the beginning of the world". it must be from his own will. Job 26:13. and was. than to come out of nothing into being? Moreover. but he is bounded by none. a creature of time. and there stop. "his goings forth were from of old. and in their reasoning rise from one cause to another. 5:2. yet. The eternity of God may be inferred from his immutability. for if he is not eternal. First. then there was an instant in which he was not. God is the most "perfect Being". which begins with them. "Before me there was no God formed. and not before. which he would not be. that it is before time and creatures were (Gen. of which Eternity is an attribute. not from his own will. and which is the only idea we have of eternity. The Eternity of God may be proved from his "attributes". and then he must be before he existed. without end. and if there was an instant in which he was not. and if so. which signifies. since there was none before him. and if so. a phrase expressive of his eternity (Isa. and not he: it remains. he is. is an imperfection. they are both to be observed in the great name of God. and is eternally the same. 48:12). Jehovah. and all eternal. hence he is so often called "the first and the last". Ps. according to some. with the Father. And if God was not eternal. That he is without beginning. and this will bring us into the depth of atheism. which is quite irrational. 24). Eternity is true of God. then there was an instant in which there was no God. or to have a beginning. and therefore must be eternal. or ever the earth was" (Mic. that God is the "first Cause" of all things. it would be but as yesterday. at the same instant. until they arrive to a first Cause. 8:23. may again not be. and may be proved. though as to his human nature. or from everlasting: the "power" of God is expressly called his "eternal power". but all would be first. and that there will be one after him. or from the will of another. 1:1. the heavens. then before time. which would suppose him in being already. and if before all creatures. 1:12). which are such contradictions as cannot be endured: not from the will of another. unless it could be supposed. that he necessarily existed. then he must be eternal. which has been already established: these two go together. his knowledge of them is before time. and therefore must be before all things. The Spirit of God was concerned in the creation of the heavens and the earth. neither shall there be after me" (Isa. 102:27). for not to be. the one God. if not eternal. &c. therefore. if not eternal. but this is strongly denied by himself. essentially considered. in his office capacity. from everlasting": and as Mediator. since we can conceive of nothing before time but eternity. but necessary: if arbitrary. and that he is without beginning. and is proved to be so by the works of creation. but of certainty. and therefore from eternity. 44:6. Add to this. who are. and therefore must be eternal: all wise and thoughtful men acknowledge a first Cause. and must be. as to his divine nature. and in the sense explained. though the things known are in time. for then that other would be both prior and superior to him. for otherwise there would be no subordination of causes: if there was not a first Cause. but of the Son and Spirit also. was born in the fulness of time. as every artificer is before his work made by him. 43:10). to which it must be prior (Rom. he was "set up from everlasting. is to be proved. and without succession. and takes in all time. that he is but "of yesterday" (Job 8:9). and so must be before them. for that which once was not. 2. 2a. which can never be admitted of. the Spirit is called. that there was a God before him. and if God is the first Cause. and possess the same undivided nature. and is strongly affirmed (Ps. and not be. he must have passed from nonexistence into being. and all that in them are. and if so.be understood not of the Father. 2a1. from eternity (Acts 15:18). and is to come. nor can any reason be given why he should necessarily exist at such an instant. earth. Prov. 93:2). From his nature and being. 33:6). and prove each other (Ps. and what can be a greater change. ap' aiwnov. there may be one again in which he may cease to be. and it is an humbling consideration to man. not as a matter of doubt. and sea. or first person only.

and there were blessings of grace. That God is to everlasting. that he was in the beginning. to be the Redeemer and Saviour of men. "because all things were made by him. all beings have their being from him. So creation is made a proof of his eternal power and Godhead (Rom. the Mediator of it. may be proved from his "spirituality" and "simplicity". not only because it will endure immoveable and unalterable for ever. from everlasting (Isa. representing his people. 23:5). and the appointment of him. and by whom they are formed. Christ is eminently called the elect of God. and therefore must be eternal. yea and amen. then God. that cannot lie. already established. into whose hands they were put. made by him before time was. was before the foundation of the world (1 Peter 1:20). particularly. was anticipated. and mountains were formed. and Christ was set up by him so early. and therefore eternal: this is the argument used to prove the eternity of Christ. were from of old. that foreordained him thereunto. a love which is both from everlasting and to everlasting (Jer. not only was before men had done any good or evil (Rom. or only newly manifested. That God is Eternal. 1:4). has no cause of his being. 1:15-17). In particular. 9:11). and acting for them. 1:3. even with an everlasting love. 1:9). is eternal. Ps 89:19). and in whom they are. and before time. "as one brought up with him". not from the beginning of the gospel coming to them. Secondly. from everlasting (Prov. and consists of parts.is eternal. or his choice of men to everlasting life. yea. 2a5. It may be proved from the works of God in time: all creatures are the works of his hands. and with which Christ. he that made them must be before all time. the Word. in whom they are. eternal life was promised by God. for no new purposes and resolutions rise up. the hills. his love to his Son. may be resolved 60 . and never waxes old. 31:3). 2:13). 2a3. that is. before the earth. 4. as is in so many words expressed (Eph. and with whom it was made. and decrees. it is said to be "from everlasting to everlasting" (Ps. the people of God were blessed with these spiritual blessings in Christ. for "God is love" (1 John 4:16). or are framed by him in his mind. "the brightness of his glory. counsels. his darling and delight (Prov. but they were chosen by him "from the beginning" (2 Thess. 42:1. 8:22. nor of their faith and conversion by it. before the world was (Titus 1:2). and so have a beginning. and the express image of his person". as "they were chosen in him before the foundation of the world. and time beginning with them. And so the "love" of God. or the preordination of him to be the Lamb slain for the redemption of his people. and his eternity proves his deity. from eternity with God. 2a4. this is true of them in general. Promises also were made as early to Christ. and his goings forth in it. 5:2). then he must be from everlasting. for though it is sometimes called a new covenant. 25:1). styled an "everlasting covenant" (2 Sam. was from everlasting. creation proves his eternity. according to election. for he loved them as he loved him (John 17:23). must be eternal. and without end. as the Mediator of it. but because it was from everlasting. but from the beginning of time. and had grace given them in him before the world began" (Eph. chosen out from among the people (Isa." 2b. must be eternal also. which is no other than himself. and to them in him. our Lord himself says. 3:11). Hence Thales said. the purpose of God. and before all things. then was he by him. his Father loved him before the foundation of the world (John 17:24). for all things are from him. yet not because newly made. even "before the foundation of the world". Besides. and if they are eternal. and the same proves the eternity of God. and promises of grace. Now if there was a covenant made by God from everlasting. and as early did he love his elect in him. which are said to be "of old". Mic. and by him do all things consist" (John 1:1-3. what is mixed and compounded. the Mediator of it. The Eternity of God may be concluded from the covenant of grace. 1:20). is from none. wherefore God. Christ. that is. they are expressly said to be "eternal" (Eph. but because it is always new. being as Man and Mediator. and therefore God. 103:17). "The most ancient of Beings is God. must be as early. because all things are created by him. Col. 8:30). for then there would be something in him which was not before. but he from whom they are. there were blessings of goodness laid up in it. that chose them to salvation. was set up from everlasting as such. 23. and that he is the firstborn of every creature. may be argued from his purposes. and he had a glory with God in it before the world began (John 17:5). which would imply mutability. 2 Tim.

nothing can separate from it. But if his duration was successive. 10:16. for ever. he is. days. the most changeable and perishing of anything. by it casts a shade upon them.into them again. before there was a day. I am he" (Isa. 7:13). he is the only Potentate. and they shall reign and dwell with him for evermore. or his being from everlasting to everlasting. and is to come" (Heb. points at and distinguishes them. mercy. are immortal. and continue for ever. and God commands it for ever. "God over all. His covenant is firm and sure. which has all the hours of the day surrounding it. not so God: the meaning is. but because he continues for ever to make them good. these are all at once. All which proves him to be without end. and so be dissolved. or proceeded by succeeding moments. and even to the heaven and the earth. and goodness. and therefore without end. and "with everlasting kindness he gathers his people. and other distinctions of time. 4:9. why not his duration through time. and well stricken in them. and therefore he himself must. 29:10. and to all eternity. and so in his nature. Ps. and years: the reasons are. or "through" them. by reason of death. simple. God is immutable. may it be so called. and sits King for ever. he is "the same yesterday. to mortal men. The Eternity of God. to his being. months. it stands fast. was without successive duration. and has mercy on them". and therefore must be for ever: his grace. whose flesh is as grass. His love is to everlasting. His eternity is to be proved from his "immutability". and for ever". and not as succeeding one another. 33:11). "The Ancient of Days" (Dan. He is. and these of so many minutes. but the stile stands firm and unmoved. he was before all days. 13:8. but spirits. is without succession. but it is in accommodation and condescension to our weak minds. he being in such a state of infinite happiness. 1:23). and therefore he himself must be to everlasting. and not affected thereby: hence it is that "one day is with the Lord as a thousand years. that the differences and distinctions of time are together ascribed to God. 10:6). in time. Jehovah. not only because he is able and faithful to perform. nor superior to him. in the same manner? Should it be said. his kingdom is an everlasting kingdom. and if his eternity past. and the thoughts of his heart to all generations" (Ps. he co-exists. their everlasting ALL in ALL. that days and years are ascribed to God. and not a thousand. indeed. would ever put an end to it himself.10. with Christ. "The incorruptible God" (Rom. as bodies may. for those. he is an everlasting King. 27). Dan. 4:3). as well as from it. but is unmoved and unaffected with any. or as the rod or pin of a sundial. that can put an end. infer one another. and will never end (Jer. must much more be so. and was. not ancient "in" days. an infinite and uncreated one. because he ever lives to bring them into execution: men take up resolutions. but he is unchangeably the same. their purposes are broken. hours. 2c. or any distinctions of time succeeding one another. as moments. and their thoughts perish. and therefore is said to "keep truth for ever" (Ps. 43:13). and therefore is called. being immaterial. minutes. because he existed before such were in being. today. and dependant on none. the first Cause. as a rock in the rolling waves of the sea. Rev. before there were any days. 146:6). he rests in it. 10:10). there is none above him. and uncompounded of parts. as before observed. and without any cause. it is true. and the sun. continually endure. and so there is no end of his years (1 Peter 1:24. 102:26. And it may be observed. which. one day would be but one day with him. for what can be a greater change than for a being not to be? Hence God is opposed to creatures. 25. "Before the day was. nor can it be thought. they are. 1:4). which are not capable of conceiving of duration but as successive: and besides. and his dominion is from generation to generation. they being such. Thirdly. are never executed. or without succeeding moments. and together with him. blessed for ever". with all the points of time. and "he will be the portion of his people for ever". before the first day of the creation. more immoveable than rocks and mountains. Ps. as aged persons are said to be in years. Moreover. It may be argued from his "independency". and his duration is not to be measured by them. but is often said to "live for ever and ever" (Rev. he is not only called the living God (Jer. days. such as angels and the souls of men. he is self-existent. and years. called. those days and years ascribed to God are expressly said not to be as ours (Job 10:5). and a thousand years as one day" (2 Peter 3:8). he is he "which is. and form schemes. This may be inferred from his "dominion" and government. and a thousand 61 . 10:10. consisting of so many hours. Hence his purposes and decrees are never frustrated. or a tower in a torrent of gliding water. these meet together in his name. that he is more ancient than days. and God being a Spirit. and therefore he himself must endure for ever: his promises are all fulfilled. because he ever lives to keep it. but "the counsel of the Lord stands for ever.

essentially considered. [9] Praefat. Bucolic. every moment and minute has a beginning. [2] apeiron ara to en. which cannot be said of God. c. agenhta kai afyarta. or unmeasurable. l. Mwq. 1. or when the world was created. and in other respects he must be imperfect: the "knowledge" of God proves him without successive duration. and something to come not yet arrived to and obtained. 50. that he has "neither beginning of days. [11] "Quo fugis Encelade. 62 . but he calls things that are not yet. he sees and knows all in one view. and so he will to all eternity. and year: but as it is said of Christ.days would answer to a thousand days. Cicero de Divinat. God is Eternity itself. 1. and years. In short. there must be a beginning from whence every flux of time. there is an order of former and latter. 2. months. 2. so he does throughout time. these he knows at once. so he did before time. immutable". God knows all things. Aristot. lost and irrecoverable. which are so to us. in successive duration. Sallustius denied that the nature of God was made. 3. and "perfect". "Jovis omnia plena". ENDNOTES: [1] to ton apanta apeiron yronon kai thn apeirian periecon telov aiwn estin. [4] De Diis. 9. day. l. ei mhte archn mhte teleuthn ecei. and without succession. Bab. What has neither beginning nor end. 48. so not his duration. p. for if his duration was successive. in his all-comprehending mind: and as his knowledge is not successive. and inhabits eternity. p. both before the world was made. there would be every moment something past and gone. 1117. c. as eternal: and this is the definition Thales gave of God. all things are open and manifest to him at once and together. l. 25. 35. if his duration was measured by a succession of moments. c. not that they are so to him. 3. it cannot be said of him. as though they were. 5. for he is always. so every hour. c. because it always was. as he is: not "immense". Plato in Parmenide. even older. Allegor. [6] In rad. fol. [7] Vid. [10] Leg. from whence it is reckoned. as they successively come into being. as he is not to be measured by space. The very heathens themselves had a notion of their supreme God. Bava Bathra. l. Baal Aruch in voce Mwqm. and therefore calls him. Virgil. whereas. the most Ancient. Besides. eclog. hours. not only what are past and present. de Coelo. that is. Moreover. that he is older now than he was in the days of David. c. c. [8] Pirke Eliezer. 1. and all together. times make no change in him. if to be measured by minutes. [5] T. then he would not be "immense. Aristot. month. since he would be one minute what he was not before. infinitum sit necesse est". quascumque accesseris oras--sub Jove semper eris"-----Virgil. 6. What is God? answered. Ethic. [12] ta d'aidia. relig. and after it will cease to be. ad Comment. 1. for as a Jewish writer well observes. l. so not by time: nor "immutable". for being asked. [3] Ambo apud Lactant. present. in lib. every distinction proceeds. 7:3). not one thing after another. and not be as one only. and to come. so it is true of God. days. "nihil cum habeat extremum. nor end of life" (Heb. past. Esther. Nor "perfect". &c. de fals. with respect to his divine nature.

Conviv. Infinity. c. de Mundo. l. Virgil. for all creatures live and move and have their being in and of God. it may be necessary to consider life in the creatures. 1051. which belong to God. is dead. The lowest degree of real life is in vegetables. 2. as an uncreated. Vita Thalet. though an inadequate one. and will be. but when motionless. being "actus. Pompon. [20] Laert. and water that is stagnated in pools and lakes. it is his nature and essence. 18. as all spirits are. is called living. ivumque aeterna potestas". Plutarch. and what has not is without it. 17. 7:21. and Eternity. [17] Plato observes. Sept. it is supposed to have life. O hominum. and planets move. 2. and trees. purus. and which distinguish him from all other spirits. "in Timaeo.[13] ti to yeion. 2. that is under a divine agency. Thales in Laert. p. for comprehend it we cannot. to mhte archn econ. are. et simplicissimus". and displays all his perfections. A Body of Doctrinal Divinity Book 1—Chapter 7 Of The Life Of God. Joseph Albo in Sepher lkkarim. said to live. plants. in an improper sense. it is thought to be dead. and as variously displayed. sed Jupiter ab aeterno fuit Deus". I shall now proceed to consider such as belong to him as an active and operative Spirit. v. and hence it is that such who only seem to have self-motion. Life is a principle in the creature by which it moves itself. indeed. it is himself. [18] Joseph Albo in Sepher Ikkarim. 22. And in order to apprehend somewhat of the life of God. moon. [15] Consolat. flowing with water. "but to the eternal Being. Aristot. Philosoph. "th sto estin monon. 5. vol. so a dead carcass may be moved. Aeneid. are synonymous. (Gen. in herbs. almighty power. "Alii Dii aliquando Dii non fuerunt. "it is. (see Gen. John 4:10. [14] R. and by rising from the lowest degree of life to an higher. such as God performs. 23. it is self-motion only that shows a creature to be alive. or omnipotence. 23) but it is not any kind of motion that can lay a claim to life. by which God exerts his nature and essence. Having considered the attributes of Simplicity. to move. what that is. and express the same thing. under different considerations. and eternal Spirit. yet they are inanimate. that to a temporal being we say of it. dihkwn ex aiwnov atermonov eiv eteron aiwna. mhte teleuthn. l. 1. p. as a fountain. Vita Thalet. the sun. p. ut supra. 153. c. to him only it is. 137. power. Sabin. p. 10. more or less. as long as a creature has any motion. Sap. which are the attributes next to be considered. 66. 24. and was. we may form some idea of the life of God. Some think this is not a single perfection of God. wherefore this may be treated of as a distinct attribute. apud Laert. and a very eminent and fundamental one it is. but expressive of all the divine perfections: and. agenhton gar. and so is every other attribute his nature. l. though it cannot move. and remains unmoved. he is all act. c. and first his "life". l. Omnipresence. l. yeov. and activity supposes life and operations. fol. which 63 . in ibid. what has motion has life. [16] presbutaton twn ontwn. and to have life. [21] De Diis. Immutability. 1. 26:19) to which the allusion is in Song of Solomon 4:15. but he is infinitely so. Jeremiah 2:13. l. and from that to an higher still. 7. the phrases. infinite. [19] "O pater.

and refuse. But neither of these sorts of life can assist us in our ideas of the life of God. for "the body without". will and decree whatever he pleases. and by himself. "motions" (Rom. implanted in them. The natural and spiritual life of men is of God. "the spirit". and show a rational life in them. In animals there is an higher degree of life. or soul. 7:5). God is life essentially. Ps. and life efficiently. and which is called. every imperfection in the life of angels and men. and the souls of men. therefore. which is common with the bodies of men. and holiness. could it be dissolved. even in the highest degree. and so his life is "infinite". God allsufficient. And now these internal acts of the mind. and feeling. love. or on which it depends. he is "El-Shaddai". But what comes nearest to the life of God. 30:20). and from him: the spiritual and eternal life of the saints is not in and of themselves. 6:16) who has life in himself. as it will be perfect and eternal in a future state. which. hearing. yet a motion of growth and increase. but Christ lives in them". being finite and dependant. for though they have not a local motion. by a self-motion. without them. and his life is the result of the union of these. essentially considered. grace. blessed and happy in himself for evermore. &c. and are made partakers of the divine nature. and put forth leaves and fruit. and hate. and as infinitely transcending what is in finite creatures. as it is without a cause. The natural life of creatures is not in and of themselves. and everything that is great and excellent must be ascribed to him. a spiritual holy life. there is no cause from whence it is. in them there is the breath of life. as it cannot. by which they are capable not only of operating on bodies. &c. suitable to their nature as spirits. and the length of thy days" (Deut. a simple and uncompounded Being. who can. consists not of parts. death would ensue. life eternally. 4). drinking. such as to understand. 5:26. of seeing. have Christ formed in them. or separate from. 11:11). most resemble what is in God. Now this most resembles the life of God. "and they live. is called the living God. they have their life from God in every sense. they will that which is spiritually good. to choose. which when dissolved. it is independent. and likewise the Spirit. In the life of creatures.are truly said to live (Ezek. it is in and of himself. who consists of soul and body. and giving them power to perform. there is always something wanting. though it comes abundantly short of what is in God. the Spirit of God working in them a disposition thereunto. 84:2. 47:7. and not the Father only. "he is thy life. "the Father has life in himself" (John 5:26). but is in God. as the life. by the Spirit of God. Josh. they understand divine and spiritual things. they perform vital spiritual acts. and are supported in it by him. "being in Christ. eating. and do what is such. but in God there is none. 1. has no dependence on any other. There is an higher degree of life still. "is dead" (James 2:26). and inclinations to sin. as also "most perfect". 42:2. It does not arise from any composition of parts. who live the same animal life with them. in. &c. and. angels. and living the same life. and so has the Son and Word of God (John 1:1. walking. "the spirit of life" (Rev. (Heb 3:12 and the Spirit is 64 . is true of God. (Deut. to will. and rise up to a greater height. and of. but is from God. carried to its greatest height. even death spiritual and eternal: but God is a Spirit. and live a life. as the first thoughts of. there being nothing in theirs similar to his. 4:18). which may be called the motions of the mind. and what is true of all the Persons in the Godhead. And as the life of God is "of himself". it is himself. especially. which. must be removed from God. and gives life to all that have it. these are possessed of sensitive powers. is that which is in regenerated persons. The scriptures frequently speak of God as the "living God" both in the Old and New Testament. unconverted men are strangers to (Eph. "the life of God". by having such a principle of life wrought in them. depends on him. but the Son of God also. it ceases. understand all things. of man does. which is in rational creatures. 9). and created in him unto good works". are called. on matter. from the union of which his life arises. they live not so much their own life as another's. but of performing acts within themselves. which are good in angels or men. yet not they. who have a principle of spiritual life. God is life "essentially". called. "eternal". and perform the common functions of life. that we can conceive of. it is his nature and essence. smelling. they become bigger and larger. 3:10. which shows life. "hid with Christ in God". But God lives his own life. and the union of them. tasting. they partaking of the same undivided nature and essence. and "immutable". even the natural life. and loves and hates what is agreeable or disagreeable to him. Matthew 16:16. as a principle of life unto them. 2 Cor. But the life of God is in and of himself. And the spiritual life of saints arises from the union of Christ and his Spirit. and rational ones.

they cannot be killed. and. they choose and seek for death. because it was like to the immortals. by some of the greatest personages. and which may be concluded from the "simplicity" of his nature: what consists of parts may be resolved into those parts again. they die not. and this title and epithet he has in opposition to. the sun. and will live for ever and ever. their torments are endless. he has no cause prior to him. which are dumb idols. 2. has this remarkable observation. But our God. there is none above him. it is even against their wills. he that is the "true God". 10:5. but cannot have it. and so lives from eternity to eternity. saith the Lord". that can take away his life from him. indeed. (2 Cor. 3:3 each person is the living God. which idolatry was very early. or end. "the living God. Angels are immortal. silver. and bring them to nothing again: the souls of men are immortal. but he is above all. (Dan. if he would. that is. this is everlasting life. he swore by himself" (Heb 6:13). 106:28). that he is the "eternal life". and gold. yea. brass. and so not capable of being reduced to them. them that are not by nature God: the living God is opposed to idols. or on whom it depends. (Jer. 115:4-7). and contradistinction from. and emperors. and yet. he "is the true God". and worshipping them is called eating the sacrifices of the dead (Ps. 14:28) and this is no other than swearing by his life. (1 Tim. deified after their death. but of God. and lifeless ones (see Ps. and the effect of his will and power. 10:10. and so both men and angels swear by the living God. 10:10). nor do they die with their bodies. are immortal. as he can from his creatures. I think. and prefers him to all other beings: and. but he is the same. he could. and may be depended on. that Alcmaeon supposed that the soul was immortal. 16. "as I live. nothing is more common with them than to call their gods. if his life was not eternal. and so cease to be. annihilate them. but then this immortality is not of themselves. and who even had set up themselves for God. 12:7. 1 Thess. moon. the Word and Son of God. "And lift up my hand. that appears for a while. or being dissolved. and stars. yesterday and for ever". 12:16. and then vanishes away" (James 4:14). he must be subject to the greatest of changes. But. and therefore must live for ever: and from his "independency". 1:17) the very heathens have such a notion of Deity as immortal. 4:34 6:26 but he asserts it of himself. superior to him. 15. is he "who only hath immortality" (1 Tim. and dependent on him. in him. says Socrates {1}. kings. who hath it in and of himself. which are inanimate. what is true of God personally. and gives it to others. and from all images of wood. and an everlasting King" (Jer. Likewise from his "immutability". and which is very frequently used by him (see Num. "the immortal ones". and it is the common form of swearing with him. is so. and say. after the resurrection. 6). and without any variableness. succession. as several of the above scripture testimonies assure us. act. as before observed. and always is clothed with it. which was with "the Father" from eternity. Acts 14:15. and proudest monarchs that ever were upon earth. from heroes. is immortality. wherefore there must needs be perpetual motion in God. And God is not only acknowledged to be the living God. and dependent on none. "by him that lives for ever and ever" (Jer. not consisting of parts. ``The energy. before "manifested" unto men. this mortal then puts on immortality. God is life eternally. the very species or idea of life. The bodies of men. he is called "immortal eternal". lifeless and motionless. essentially considered. even the bodies of the wicked are immortal. Dan. 1:9) he is distinguished by this essential attribute of his from the first objects of idolatrous worship. nor shadow of change. he is without beginning of life or end of days. and if anything else is immortal. he is "most properly" said to live. especially the life of man: what is it? "it is but a vapour. which distinguishes him from. and of his years there is no end (Ps. I live for ever". God. stone. but this is the gift of God. from whom he has received his life. who are below him. for as he made them out of nothing. "the same today. without beginning. the life of creatures is no life in comparison of his. as has been established. 32:40. 5:2. or operation of God. and ever continues. must prove also that he lives for ever. is true of him essentially considered: he lived from eternity. and the 65 . but then what has been said of angels may be said of them. It is indeed said of Christ. and confessed by all that he cannot perish. and to live for ever and ever. there is no change. which is himself. yea. The same arguments which prove his "eternity".called the Spirit of the living God. 102:27). death.'' And he reports {3}. the true God. but God is a simple and uncompounded Being. Aristotle {2}. 6:16). is also "eternal life" (1 John 5:20). (Deut. which must be true. "for when he could swear by no greater. it is an oath of his affirming the same. but not of themselves. and God. Rev. is. who supports and continues them in their being.

And the Spirit. 1:11. 42:8). and exposed unto eternal death. or adjudges and entitles them to eternal life. 10:28). and their very living in sin is no other than death: nor can they quicken themselves. and godly. and a life of faith on Christ. 36:9 which he would not be. Ps. and he gives them life and breath. which life is preserved in them. and he takes it away. when his Spirit blows upon them (Gen. the source and spring.12. God is the author and giver of life. so that none of them shall perish. and of holiness from him. and he gave his flesh for the life of them. in a corporal sense. and which is his free gift. Eternal life. and shall issue in eternal life. p. 21. and give it to his sheep. 40:7). Acts 17:25. will to. and his visitation preserves their spirit. in a state of unregeneracy. most properly. Christ came that his people might have it. what he who cannot lie has promised to them before the world began. dead in law. in which all the three Persons in the Godhead are concerned (John 5:21. but they cannot give life: no man can make a living fly. God only has immortality in and of himself.smoke of them ascends for ever and ever. they are dead in trespasses and sins. Now God must have life in the highest degree of it. requires almighty power. Isa. is from him. the fowl of the air. 25. that gives it. nothing can give what it has not. they live in newness of life. The rational life in angels and men. as what the saints shall enjoy for evermore. 104:29). The spiritual life that is in any of the sons of men. through the righteousness of Christ. c. independently. and he must live for ever. (Acts 13:48. affection for what is morally and spiritually good. men may paint to the life. Rom. and he dwells in his people. in a spiritual sense. when he calls them by his grace. 1:20. he may as soon make a world. and trees. he speaks life into them. to continue eternal life. a life of justification. it is put into his hands. and flows from his free favour and good will. and in him they consist: to men he grants life and favour. 8:2). particularly to his people. originally. and when he takes it away. and because of his great love. of the fishes in the sea. as we say. even essentially. "With thee is the fountain of life". if he had not life in and of himself. from the lowest to the highest degree of it. 2. Titus 1:2. Men. and. soberly. 66 . and brings them into the full enjoyment of it. it is what he has provided and prepared for them in his council and covenant: what they are foreordained unto in his purposes and decrees. righteously. The vegetative life that is in herbs. which is the justification of life. and in the most perfect manner. plants. and takes it away at pleasure (Ps. originally. breathes into the dry bones the breath of life. is from him. is a never dying one. and because of them dead as to their understanding of. 11:25. and by his almighty power. l. Rom. as explained. and he has a power to dispose of it. 79. No creature can give real life. are dead. is from God. quickens men dead in sin. and. 24. and return to the dust (Gen. and he is the God of their life. infinitely. the exceeding greatness of God's power. the resurrection of the dead. the life of all animals. or he could never give life in every sense unto his creatures. and works them up for it. 25. 3. they die. essentially. it springs up to everlasting life. in Phoedo. whose grace springs up to it. but by the Spirit and Power of the living God. it is hid and secured with Christ in God. and preserve them in it. (Ps. and supported by him. and the beasts of the field. so often spoken of in scripture. is of God. 3. continues it. but have it (1 John 5:12. and they live spiritually. God is life "efficiently". The animal life is owing to him. and do most certainly enjoy. dead in a moral and spiritual sense: and while they are corporally alive. so that it is not by might or power of man. through Christ. the author and giver of life to others. and perfectly. as the earnest of it. 6:23) and in which the Son and Spirit have a concern. and issues in it. John 17:2. that of his rich mercy. It is God. ENDNOTES: [1] Apud Platon. angels are made rational living spirits by him. [2] De Coelo.

[3] De Anima, l. 1. c. 2. A Body of Doctrinal Divinity Book 1—Chapter 8 Of The Omnipotence Of God.

Some of the names of God, in the Hebrew language, are thought to be derived from words which signify firmness and stability, strength and power; as Adonai, El, El-Shaddai, which latter is always rendered almighty, (Gen. 17:1; Ex. 6:3) and very frequently in the book of Job; and the Greek word pantokratwr is used of God in the New Testament, and is translated almighty and omnipotent, (Rev. 1:8, 4:8, 19:6) and power is one of the names of God, (Matthew 26:64 compared with Heb. 1:3) the angel said to the Virgin Mary, "with God nothing shall be impossible", (Luke 1:37) and Epicharmus, the heathen, has the same expression; and so Linus: Omnipotence is essential to God, it is his nature; a weak Deity is an absurdity to the human mind: the very heathens suppose their gods to be omnipotent, though without reason; but we have reason sufficient to believe that the Lord our God, who is the true God, is Almighty; his operations abundantly prove it; though if he had never exerted his almighty power, nor declared it by any external visible works, it would have been the same in himself; for it being his nature and essence, was from eternity, before any such works were wrought, and will be when they shall be no more; and hence it is called, his "eternal power", (Rom. 1:20) and may be concluded from his being an uncreated eternal "Spirit". All spirits are powerful, as their operations show; we learn somewhat of their power from our own spirits or souls, which are endowed with the power and faculties of understanding, willing, reasoning, choosing and refusing, loving and hating, &c. and not only so, but are able to operate upon the body; and to quicken, move, direct and guide it to do whatever they please, and that that is capable of; and angelic spirits are more powerful still, they excel in strength, and are called mighty angels, (Ps. 103:20; 2 Thess. 1:7) and have done very strange and surprising things; one of them slew in one night one hundred and eighty five thousand men, in the Assyrian camp, (2 King 19:35) and what then cannot God, the uncreated and infinite Spirit, do; who has endowed these with all their power, might, and strength? can less than omnipotence be ascribed to him? This may be inferred from his "infinity". God is an infinite Being, and so is every perfection of his; his understanding is infinite, and such is his power; for, as a Jewish writer argues, since power is attributed to God, it must be understood that it is infinite; for if it was finite, it might be conceived that there was a greater power than his; and so privation would fall on God; as if there was not in him the greater power that is to be conceived of. He is unlimited and unbounded, as to space, and so is omnipresent; and he is unlimited and unbounded as to time, and so is eternal; and he is unlimited and unbounded as to power, and so is omnipotent: to deny, or to call in question, his omnipotence, is to limit the Holy One of Israel, which ought not to be done; this the Israelites are charged with, for distrusting his power to provide for them in the wilderness (Ps. 78:19, 20, 41). The omnipotence of God may be argued from his "independency"; all creatures depend on him, but he depends on none; there is no cause prior to him, nor any superior to him, or above him, that can control him; none, who, if his hand is stretched out, can turn it back, or stop it from proceeding to do what he will; none can stay his hand, or say unto him, what dost thou? "he does what he pleases in heaven and in earth" (Dan. 4:35). Moreover, this attribute of God may be confirmed by his "perfection"; God is a most perfect being; but that he would not be if anything was wanting in him: want of power in a creature is an imperfection, and would be so in God, was that his case; but as he is great, his power is great; there is an exuberance, an exceeding greatness of power in him, beyond all conception and expression; he is "able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we can ask or think" (Eph. 1:19 3:20). And this may be strengthened yet more by observing the "uselessness" of many other "perfections" without it; for what though he knows all things fit and proper to be done, for his own glory, and the good of his creatures, what does it signify, if he cannot do them? and though he may, in


the most sovereign manner, will, determine, and decree, such and such things to be done; of what avail is it if he cannot carry his will, determinations, and decrees into execution? what dependence can there be upon his faithfulness in his promises, if he is not able also to perform? and of what use is his goodness, or an inclination and disposition in him to do good, if he cannot do it? or where is his justice in rendering to every man according to his works, if he cannot execute it? So that, upon the whole, it is a most certain truth, that "power belongs to God", as the Psalmist says, (Ps. 62:11) and to whom he ascribes it, even "power" and "might", by which two words he expresses the greatness of power, superlative power, power in the highest degree, even omnipotence, (1Chron. 29:12) and it may be observed, that in all the doxologies or ascriptions of glory to God, by angels and men, power or might is put into them (Rev. 4:10,11, 5:13, 7:11,12). And indeed it belongs to no other; it is peculiar to God: nor is it communicable to a creature; since that creature would then be God; for omnipotence is his nature; nor is it even communicable to the human nature of Christ, for the same reason; for though the human nature is united to a divine person, who is omnipotent, it does not become omnipotent thereby; though the two natures, divine and human, are closely united in Christ; yet the properties of each are distinct and peculiar; and it is easy to observe, that the human nature of Christ was subject to various infirmities, though sinless ones, and stood in need of help, strength, and deliverance; for which, as man, he prayed; and at last, he was crucified, through weakness (Heb. 4: 15; Ps. 22:19, 20; 2 Cor. 13:4). And as for Matthew 28:18 that is said not of the attribute of divine power, which is not "given" him, but is natural to him, as a divine person, but of his authority over all, and their subjection to him as Mediator. The power of God reaches to all things, and therefore is, with propriety, called Omnipotence; all things are possible with God, and nothing impossible; this is said by an angel, and confirmed by Christ, (Luke 1:37; Mark 14:36) what is impossible with men is possible with God; what cannot be done according to the nature of things, the laws, rules, and course of nature, may be done by the God of nature, who is above these, and not bound by them, and sometimes acts contrary to them; as when he stopped the sun in its course, in the times of Joshua; made iron to swim by the hands of the prophet Elisha; and suffered not fire to burn in the furnace of Nebuchadnezzar, so that the three persons cast into it were not hurt by it, nor their clothes so much as singed, nor the smell of fire upon them: whereas, it is the nature of the sun to go on in its course, without stopping, nor can any creature stop it; and for ponderous bodies, as iron, to sink in water; and for fire to burn. There are some things, indeed, which God cannot do, and which the Scriptures express as, that "he cannot deny himself", (2 Tim. 2:13) nor do anything that is contrary to his being, his honour and glory, or subversive of it; thus, for instance, he cannot make another God, that would be contrary to himself, to the unity of his Being, and the declaration of his Word; "Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God is one Lord", (Deut. 6:4) he cannot make a finite creature infinite; that would be to do the same, and there would be more infinites than one, which is a contradiction; he cannot raise a creature to such dignity as to have divine perfections ascribed to it, it has not, which would be a falsehood; or to have religious worship and adoration given it, which would be denying himself, detracting from his own glory, and giving it to another, when he only is to be served and worshipped: in such manner it is also said of him, that he "cannot lie", (Titus 1:2; Heb. 6:18) for this would be contrary to his truth and faithfulness; he can do nothing that is contrary to his attributes; he cannot commit iniquity, he neither will nor can do it; for that would be contrary to his holiness and righteousness; (see Job 34:10,12, 36:23) he cannot do anything that implies a contradiction; he cannot make contradictions true; a thing to be, and not to be at the same time; or make a thing not to have been that has been; he can make a thing not to be, which is, or has been; he can destroy his own works; but not make that not to have existed, which has existed; nor make an human body to be everywhere; nor accidents to subsist without subjects; with many other things which imply a manifest contradiction and falsehood: but then these are no prejudices to his omnipotence, nor proofs of weakness; they arise only out of the abundance and fulness of his power; who can neither do a weak thing nor a wicked thing, nor commit any falsehood; to do, or attempt to do, any such things, would be proofs of impotence, and not of omnipotence. The power of God may be considered as absolute, and as actual or ordinate. According to his absolute


power, he can do all things which are not contrary to his nature and perfections, and which does not imply a contradiction; even though he has not done them nor never will: thus he could have raised up children to Abraham out of stones, though he would not; and have sent twelve legions of angels to deliver Christ out of the hands of his enemies; but did not (Matthew 3:9, 26:53). He that has made one world, and how many more we know not for certainty, (Heb. 11:3) could have made ten thousand; he that has made the stars in the heaven innumerable, could have vastly increased their number; and he that has made an innumerable company of angels, and men on earth, as the sand of the sea, could have added to them infinitely more. The power of God has never been exerted to its uttermost; it is sufficient to entitle him to omnipotence, that he has done, and does, whatsoever he pleases, and that whatsoever is made, is made by him, and nothing without him; which is what may be called, his ordinate and actual power; or what he has willed and determined, is actually done; and of this there is abundant proof, as will appear by the following instances. 1. In creation; the heaven, earth, and sea, and all that in them are, were created by God, is certain; and these visible works of creation are proofs of the invisible attributes of God, and particularly, of his "eternal power" (Acts 4:24; Rom. 1:20). Creation is making something out of nothing; which none but omnipotence can effect; (see Heb. 11:3) no artificer, though ever so expert, can work without materials, whether he works in gold, silver, brass, iron, wood, stone, or in anything else: the potter can cast his clay into what form and figure he pleases, according to his art, and make one vessel for one use, and another for another; but he cannot make the least portion of clay: but God created the first matter out of which all things are made; and which were made out of things not before existing by the omnipotent Being; whom the good woman animating her son to martyrdom, exhorted to acknowledge, in the Apocrypha: ``I beseech thee, my son, look upon the heaven and the earth, and all that is therein, and consider that God made them of things that were not; and so was mankind made likewise.'' (2 Maccabees 7:28) Nor can any artificer work without tools; and the more curious his work, the more curious must his tools be: but God can work without instruments, as he did in creation; it was only by his all commanding word that everything sprung into being, (Gen. 1:3; Ps. 36:9) and everything created was done at once; creation is an instantaneous act, is without succession, and requires no length of time to do it in; everything on the several days of creation were done immediately: on the first day God said, "Let there be light"; and it immediately sprung out of darkness: on the second day he said, "Let there be a firmament", an expanse; and at once the airy heaven was stretched out like a curtain around our earth: on the third day he said, "Let the earth bring forth grass, herbs, and fruit trees"; and they arose directly out of it, in all their greenness and fruitfulness: on the fourth day he said, "Let there be lights in the heavens"; and no sooner was it said, but the sun, moon, and stars, blazed forth in all their lustre and splendour: on the fifth and sixth days orders were given for the waters to bring forth fish, and fowl, and beasts, and cattle of every kind; and they accordingly brought them forth in full perfection immediately; and last of all, man was at once made, complete and perfect, out of the dust of the earth, and the breath of life was breathed into him: and though there were six days appointed, one for each of these works, yet they were instantaneously performed on those days; and this time was allotted not on account of God, who could have done them all in a moment; but for the sake of men, who, when they read the history of the creation, there is a stop and pause at each work, that they may stand still and meditate upon it, and wonder at it. Whereas the works of men require time; and those that are most curious, longer still. Add to all this, that the works of creation were done without weariness; no labour of men is free from it: if it be the work of the brain, the fruit of close reasoning, reading, meditation, and study; "much study", the wise man says, "is a weariness of the flesh", (Eccl. 12:12) or if it be manual operation, it is labour and fatigue; but the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth, though he has wrought such stupendous works, "fainteth not, neither is weary", (Isa. 40:28) and though he is said to rest on the seventh day, yet not on account of fatigue; but to denote he had finished his work, brought it to perfection, and ceased from it. And now, to what can all this be ascribed but to omnipotence? Which, 2. Appears in the sustaining and support of all creatures, in the provision made for them, with other


(Luke 1:35. Men. filling mens' hearts with food and gladness". as the cases of Gideon. and here shall thy proud waves be stayed--and has caused the dayspring to know its place-divided a watercourse for the overflowing of waters.17. and "the cattle on a thousand hills". and the pillars of it. (Job 9:5-7 etc. in upholding him under the weight of sins and sufferings. and even raising the dead to life. Col. which is an act of omnipotence. by fulfilling the law. and which were such instances of omnipotence. Almighty power may be discerned in the conversion of sinners. who became a sacrifice for it. to cause it to rain on the earth". from the malice of Herod. the strange exploits of some particular persons. and always by him that helps. as the drowning of the whole world. from the violence of Satan's temptations. and Asa show. and from all the snares and attempts of the Scribes and Pharisees. hitherto shalt thou come. in things leading to it. and in which "the exceeding greatness of" the divine "power" was exerted. after his baptism. and to supernatural power and aid. for it was necessary that the Saviour of men should be man. which was got over. shaking the earth. and hangeth the earth upon nothing. those wonderful events in providence. and his birth of a virgin. and satisfying justice. the most high God. strong for himself. the amazing victories obtained by a few over a multitude. and no further. though these are no other than condensed air. and sealing up the stars. and all things in it. and in the completion of it: in the incarnation of Christ. which neither men nor angels could have done. such as causing the blind to see. 1:19. and after the image of God". the heavens. with whom "nothing is impossible". are preserved. and cannot be accounted for. and the pillars thereof. and the cloud is not rent under him". (see Job 26:7. he gives that "and fruitful seasons. through omnipotence forming the human nature of Christ in the above manner: and which was also evident in the protection of him from the womb. in his infancy. and cleansing lepers. clean and upright ones. the lame to walk. that the salvation should be wrought out in human nature. and have their being in God. and to grapple with all the powers of darkness. 4. 38:10-12. which were proofs of his Messiahship. have new hearts and spirits. 75:3) which none but an almighty arm can do: and the manner in which the world. for "he stretcheth out the north over the empty place. and continue. But what hand can do all these but an almighty one? To which may be added. and make a triumph over them. who put him upon destroying himself. and even with so weak a thing as sand. the man of God's right hand. are made new creatures. that so men might have the benefit of it. to take away his life before his time: and in the miraculous works wrought by him. new 70 . and in raising him from the dead for justification. (Matthew 11:5. Luke 9:43) and more especially this might be seen in making Christ. the dumb to speak.wonderful works done in providence: all creatures live. and from the wild beasts of the wilderness. was the difficulty. and the cities of the plain. that is a creation. commanding the sun not to rise. Heb. move. the deaf to hear. and yet are not burst by them--he has "shut up the sea with doors". with various other things too numerous to mention. (Acts 17:28. and to spoil them. Jehoshaphat. which can only be accounted for by recurring to omnipotence. 8. whether with many. 1:4). and whereby Christ was declared to be the Son of God "with power" (Eph. sometimes without fighting. and it was necessary that he should be free from sin. with clifts and rocks. the burning of Sodom and Gomorrah. to bring "a clean thing out of an unclean". "and said. they consist by him. or with them that have no power. and a way for the lightning of thunder. and provides for all the fowls of the air. sometimes by unarmed men. as the removing of mountains. he bindeth up the waters in his thick clouds. 26. the earth. which none of the vanities of the Gentiles can do. 25. namely. no other way than by the attribute of omnipotence. and the curses of a righteous law. as they are made by him. 1:16. in conversion. which the angel ascribes to "the power of the Highest". Acts 14:17). since all human nature was defiled with sin. yet how it could be. "he upholds all things by the word of his power". is amazing and surprising. as Jonathan and David. Rom. "created in Christ. in strengthening him in his human nature to work out salvation. as caused in those that saw them amazement at the mighty power of God. to remove a difficulty which none but omnipotence could surmount. 37) and which was an expedient found out by infinite wisdom. in enabling him to bear the wrath of God. 1:3. as has been proved. created in them. 3. The omnipotence of God may be seen in the redemption of men by Christ. without which salvation would not have been complete. which carry such burdens in them. Ps.

1:11. the whole Roman empire. and heathen philosophers. though otherwise it might. progress. and this by means of the preaching of the gospel. so that in a short time the universal monarchy of the earth. "are turned from darkness to light. by monarchs. Matthew 25:32-46. became nominally Christian. Zech. may be evinced from the rise and progress of Christianity. and will remain and be the everlasting Gospel. from the power of Satan unto God. the snares of the world. and contemptible. fol. who. That the Lord God is omnipotent. and still continues. for what but the all-commanding voice of the almighty God can rouse the dead. notwithstanding the opposition of men and devils. Rev. and all-powerful grace of God (2 Thess. and these dry bones live. and filled the whole earth. and not of men. the mighty power of God. rage. and the snares of the world. Satan's temptations be too powerful for them. and finishing of it. it need not be thought incredible. 5. and the influence of wicked companions. the flatteries of it. Linus.principles of grace and holiness formed in them. would draw them aside. and that requires almighty power. in the first times of it. kings. 20:8-10). and the force of furious persecutors. 5. are not by might and power of men. The final perseverance of every particular believer in grace and holiness. 29. and raise them to life. and were made to triumph in him over all their enemies everywhere. they are "the power of God unto salvation" (2 Cor. kai adunaton ouden. the success of the gospel. 2. ENDNOTES: [1] Apud Clement. and raised by Christ the resurrection and the life. were men illiterate. the foolish things of this world. from a death of sin to a life of grace. through the enmity and lusts of mens' hearts. and oblige them to stand at the judgment seat of Christ. 3:21. is a proof of the divine omnipotence. and that by such. otherwise their indwelling sins and corruptions would prevail over them. and some to the resurrection of damnation?" What else but his almighty power can gather all nations before him. 68. and the continuance of it. and emperors. it cannot be thought to be any thing short of the omnipotent hand of God. but by the mighty. out of the burning: and the same power that is put forth in the beginning of the work of grace. and by the whole world. the rise. and Christ with them. l. And also the great opposition made to this work. "some to the resurrection of life. 6. notwithstanding the craft of false teachers. generally speaking. "through faith unto salvation" (1 Peter 1:5). [3] Joseph Albo in Sepher Ikkarim. it is because he is great in power that not one of them fails. 1:16). 71 . but they are "kept by the power of God". is requisite to the carrying of it on. it was like the little stone cut out of the mountain without hands. p. which considered. "the foolishness of preaching". which became a great mountain. 7. and who were opposed by Jewish "rabbins". and rebellion? (see Phil. in all the height of wrath. and bring them out of their graves. And if we consider the means of it. conquering and to conquer. to submit to his righteousness. to receive each of their sentences? And what but his vengeful arm of omnipotence can execute the sentence on millions and millions of devils and wicked men. and to part with their sins and sinful companions: all which are effects of the exceeding greatness of the power of God towards them and upon them: they are quickened when dead in sins. willing to keep possession. the Spirit of life enters into them. as in a garrison. for the most part. and serve him. for this end. the gospel put into earthen vessels. John 5:28. as brands. 597. and the Gospel has lived through all the persecutions of Rome pagan and papal. that snatches men. conversion is a resurrection. The almighty power of God will be displayed in the resurrection of the dead. Stromat. "that the excellency of the power of God may appear to be of God". The interest of Christ in the world rose from small beginnings. [2] radia panta yew telesai. to be saved by Christ. all which is owing to the mighty power of God. 4:6). mean. yet these went forth. and are made willing in the day of God's power" upon them. fury. Rom. efficacious. and when these means are effectual. the malice of Satan. 4:7.

God would be no other than the idols of the Gentiles. bear some similarity. I proceed to consider such perfections. (Job 35:11) and the spiritual knowledge which good men have. gives them a superior excellency and felicity to bad men. Prove that knowledge belongs to God. and his Power. that in all rational creatures there is knowledge. (Rom. or Omnipotence. both of natural. and so there was in man. Now if there is knowledge in any of the creatures of God. or "knowledges". 9:19) and this can never be supposed to be without knowledge. before the fall. To show the extent of the knowledge of God. but the portion of Jacob is not like them (Jer. then much more in God himself. In short. that it is determined by the last act of the understanding. which belong to him as an active and operative Spirit. endowed with understanding. from the works of creation. and there is more. as he is. 1:11. and that the darkness hides not anything from his all-piercing. "He that teacheth man knowledge. and all in them. or refuses. l. without knowledge. and spiritual. and sea. it reaches to all things. rational spirits. (Ps.[4] So Agathon apud Aristot. (Rom. Besides. and are falsehood and vanity. God is said to have a "mind" and "understanding". 9:15. which is objected to. and works all things after the counsel of his will. understanding. (Eph. 11:33. partly from the supposed distance of God in heaven. 4:5). but see not. 23:23. and affections. and called in question. and therefore it must be in him in its perfection: knowledge of all things. Jer. it is generally said and believed of the will of man. 73:11) particularly with respect to human affairs. 1 Cor. It is knowledge that gives men the preference to the brute creation. And. who have eyes. and since the fall there is a remainder of it. 11:34. I shall begin with the first of these. or his presence in all places. will. 3:19. of all knowledge. especially divine and spiritual knowledge. divine. 13:12). that he has a will is most certain. as they "are known". comes from God. there is much in angels. Isa. Let it be further observed. (Job 22:12-14) and which are easily answered by observing the omnipresence of God. he is a "God of knowledge". 2. or "to know". notwithstanding the loss sustained by it. (1 Sam. 40:28) to which may be referred. and it cannot be imagined that God wills anything ignorantly and rashly. which go together. suppose and require the same (Rom. Without knowedge God would not be perfectly happy. is taught and given by him. (John 21:17. and knowledge. which may be ascribed to him as an intelligent Spirit. so in perfect knowledge. the blessed one. who are renewed in knowledge. the heavens. 24). natural. and 72 . as the Life of God. the darkness and the light being alike to him (Ps. Rom. 2. and the actings of it. and the judgment of the last day. by impious and atheistical persons. 11:33. seem to arise. from men on earth. wherefore strong is the reasoning of the Psalmist. 20) the government of the world. 94:10). and civil things. (Prov. and their happiness in a future state will lie. and makes them happier than they. shall he not know?" (Ps. and objections to it. earth. as in perfect holiness. 6. 1. and blessed for ever. c. and could never be made without them. which cannot be resisted. is from him. and partly from the thick and dark clouds which intervene between them. which are ascribed to his wisdom. (Rom. (1 Cor. to which. 139:7-12. Ethic. His knowledge may be inferred from his will. A Body of Doctrinal Divinity Book 1—Chapter 9 Of The Omniscience Of God Having considered such attributes of God. 10:14-16). and which the very heathens ascribe to God. in regenerate men. 2:3) the source and fountain of it. are the work of errors. the attributes of "knowledge" and "wisdom". all that knowledge that is in angels or men. 1 John 3:20) and is therefore with great propriety called "omniscience". and to whom he wills anything. he must know what he wills and nills. civil. I go on. all-penetrating eye. the grounds of which doubts about it. 18) and it appears from all his works.

purposes.11). God knows all his creatures. he knows all things "inanimate". with everything belonging to them. their thoughts. and redemption by him. so that "not one faileth". it becomes us to yield the obedience of faith unto it: he knows his own thoughts. And Pindar says. and the exact time of the accomplishment of them. the Son knows the Father. as numerous as they are. and as much above us as the heavens are above the earth. and end. 50:10. through the light of nature. has been reckoned a wise maxim with philosophers. and fishes". creeping things. that these three are one. and setting. and from whom he proceeds. of the constitution. God knows the mode of each person's subsistence in the Deity. &c. "by the greatness of his might". even by the very heathens. he "bringeth out their host by number". or them as a mighty army. he is deceived. has so declared it to be. (Rom. purposes. could lie hid to. 1 Cor. 2:10). grass. or be concealed from God? answered. from the cedar in Lebanon to the hyssop that springs out of the wall". If a man hopes that anything will be concealed from God. 40:26) he knows all the "irrational" creatures. use. 2:19. cast him on dry land again (Jonah 1:17. what is in them. which is a mystery incomprehensible by us. whose Spirit he is. and if creatures know themselves in any degree. should have a distinct and perfect knowledge of all these? he knows all "rational" beings. which are the deep things of God. but inasmuch as God. three persons. and he upholds them in being. 1:31) and his eye sees all things in their present state and condition. wherein God has showed it to them. temperament. who knows his own nature best. (1 King 4:33) even of their nature. the paternity of the Father. and the first step to wisdom and knowledge. begotten by him. and of the powers and faculties of their souls. No. and designs. since even men. "all the fowls of the mountains". Acts 1:7). and provided one to swallow Jonah. as angels may reasonably be supposed to be. and texture of their bodies. not only the two great luminaries. Thales being asked. "that is not manifest in his sight" (Heb 4:13). and what belongs to them. "I know". could "speak of trees. not one excepted. (Ps. and pronounced it good. as to give them proper and suitable names. God knows himself. the beasts of the field. and brought up with him. and intentions (1 Cor. the generation of the Son. 3:1. (Gen. all that his hand has wrought. 29:11) that is. beholding his face. fowl. standing before him. but he knows them. and the spiration of the Holy Ghost. the Creator of them. when thrown into it. rising. and that because he "hath created" them. herbs. know something of themselves. which he has reserved in his own power (Eph. says he. attain to the highest degree of it. of their nature. in their fallen and imperfect state. "he calleth them all by names". the Father knows the Son. And if Adam had such knowledge of all creatures. (Gen. "Nosce teipsum. and the Spirit knows the Father and Son. then he must know himself in the most perfect manner: and rational creatures are endowed with knowledge of themselves. who is sent by them as the Comforter (see Matthew 11:27. 20) and which are more clearly displayed in Christ. though innumerable. 1:19. (Matthew 10:29) he knows all the fishes of the sea. (Jer. all that is upon the earth. 2:10.extend it to thoughts. since they are purposed in himself. in the inmost recesses of their minds. properties. nor thinking neither. the angels. motion. being his creatures. and one in three. looked over it and considered it. but the stars innumerable. 20) and Solomon. as he needs must. his decrees. "he saw everything that he had made". "the cattle on a thousand hills". and the Father and Son know the Spirit. his eternal power and Godhead. and yet. metals and minerals. and good men. at his order. Eccl. and all in the bowels of it. and sent forth by him as ministring spirits: the elect angels. his nature and perfections: somewhat of this is known by creatures themselves. infinitely much more must the Creator of all know himself. 2a. though imperfectly. even his invisible things. 1:11. a fallen son of his. whom 73 . Know thyself". he knows the things he has purposed. 2b. and in the glass of the creatures. such a distinct and particular knowledge has he of them. and "of beasts. the sun and moon. and numerous. Known unto him are all his works. God knows himself in all his persons. and each person fully knows one another. (Acts 15:18) when he had finished his works of creation. can it be thought incredible that God. (Isa. and which. their nature. and as much out of our reach. illuminated by the Spirit of God. 11) as worthless a bird as the sparrow is. "not one of them falls" on the ground without the knowledge and will of God. as angels and men. Whether a man doing ill. there is not any creature. all that are in the heavens. in whose bosom he lay. 2:11). but one God. trees. and more evidently seen by those who are favoured with a divine revelation: and if creatures know something of God.

139:2) which is peculiar to God. are known by him. would be tempted to abuse them. as his word. 3. how could everything. (Mark 5:9) do not imply any kind of ignorance of them. if suffered to live. who knows from what principles they spring. 19). 25. (Ps. nor any for them. the apostate angels. (Job 1:7) and by Christ. and such a proof that the idols of the Gentiles cannot give. 2 Cor. "would" be. and therefore he gives them poverty. are attributed to him after the 74 . 12). 43:9) all past transactions at the creation. and that even some good men. And the words of good men. and therefore gave him notice of it. should he not prevent them by the interposition of his power and providence. And all the works and ways of men. Forgetting the sins of his people. 2c. (Ps. 2:2. and their settlement in the world. with various other occurrences to be met with only in the Bible. as to write a book of remembrance of them. their downsitting and uprising. 94:11) and the good thoughts of men. and remembering them no more. as well as himself and the creatures: he knows all things possible to be done. the head of all principality and power. inspired by God. God knows all men. so is he a "discerner" of them. 121:3. 139:4) the words of wicked men. Yea. such as have been observed under the preceding attribute. present. by his grace. and all their hard speeches spoken against Christ and his people (Matthew 12:36. 12:14). and that if he stayed there. things past. or shall be. in all places and in all ages. 6:5. nor never will be done. and much more their blasphemies. as it is the most ancient. and are employed by him in providential affairs. and the other to show the greatness of the miracle wrought in casting them out. devils. be brought into account. or uttered by them. "knowledge of vision". and not of themselves. that if they had a large share of riches. and to come. 1 Chron. but with respect to us. though they are not. (Matthew 9:4. and that such is the temper of some. John 2:24. he knows the thoughts of the heart. 5:10) as well as all the good works of God's people. 33:14. but all present. so called. if they had them.he must know. so the truest and best history in the world: nothing that has been can escape the knowledge of God. and the restraints of his providence: the questions put to these by God. that he might make his escape from them. at the day of judgment. there would be no living by them. "Knowledge of simple intelligence" of things that are not actually done. they would be so haughty and overbearing. and so prevent their giving him up. 139:2. oblivion cannot be ascribed to him. (Job 34:21) their civil ones. nor slip out of his mind and memory. reserved to the judgment of the great day. and who stand on his righthand and left. since he has chosen them and put them under Christ. 3:16). not with respect to God. good and bad. Mal. an intuitive view of all actual things. Ps. and therefore he takes them away by death. and ready to obey his will. the one is put to lead on to a discourse concerning Job. and which he determines to do: so he knew the wickedness and treachery of the men of Keilah to David. God knows all things whatever. and our measures of time. since they are of him. and a strong proof of the Deity of Christ. and are under the continual eye of God. which. the fall of Adam. wherever they are. in what manner they are done. 15:3) he knows their hearts. whether good or bad. (Isa. and this knowledge is what is called by the schoolmen. going forth and coming in. (Ps. and for which an account must be given at the bar of God. but he knows it altogether. as he must. which will all be brought into judgment. the inhabitants of the earth. and in things respecting the heirs of salvation. there is not one upon their tongues. (Gen. for he has fashioned them alike. and in spiritual conversation with one another (Mal. and is often said to be the searcher of them. and confirmed them. with whom nothing is past nor future. 12:14. the original of nations. acccording to his determinate will (1 Sam. 23:11. expressed in prayer and thanksgiving. or they be lost to him. He knows what "might" be. He knows all former things. Heb 4:12. God knows the wickedness of some mens' hearts. that they would be guilty of the most shocking crimes. and that without number. 13) the evil thoughts of men. all the sons of men. they would deliver him up into the hands of Saul. and what followed on that. are. to their own hurt. and in course. oaths. (2 Cor. and for what ends (Rev. (Ps. and curses. 28:9) he knows all the words of men. 8) and all their sinful ways and works. in their happy state. Moreover. which are many and vain. and which the schools call. 41:22. God knows all things that have been. open or secret. which must be accounted for in the day of judgment. 3:5. the essential Word. and with what views. as it will? (Eccl. 3:16) he knows the imaginations of the thoughts of the heart. (Heb 4:12. and are laid up in chains of darkness. even every idle word. the first motions to thought. from the beginning of the world. could he forget past facts. hearkening to his voice. Prov. and which is a proof of Deity. and he takes such notice of them. Jude 1:15). (Eccl.

as of Josiah.manner of men. no bare foreknowledge of persons. since he is present in all places. concerning the four monarchies. and good works. which necessarily will be. and which even depend upon the wills of men. "the whole disposing of it is of the Lord" (Prov. holiness. 15:13. who. resurrection. and let the captive Jews go free without price. (Lam. while of others he says. or should. do. is a difficulty. 46:10). are hap and chance. and according to which it is. and therefore he must certainly know what he wills shall be: and this is another proof of Deity wanting in heathen idols (Isa. all that will be. but as joined with love and affection to the objects of it. or foreknowledge of God. 2:19) not in general. and session at God's right hand. for all prophecy is founded on God's foreknowledge and predetermination of things. (Gen. 31:21. and perseverance therein. and all live. forget offences. or by others. as he must. but distinctly. on which the election of persons to eternal life is founded. as causes of it. though foreordained to it by the Lord. And what is the book of the Revelation but a prophecy. but whether this difficulty can be removed. and so a proof of God's foreknowledge of future events. 139:2) or than the voluntary actions of men. and particularly. but of things contingent. He knows all things future. and other nations. Acts 2:23). is not only of the effects of necessary causes. God sees and knows all things present. Indeed. 2:13 and so do wicked men. from the times of Christ to the end of the world? and this prescience. and therefore objected to the certain foreknowledge and decree of God. 44:28. and it is casual to men. (Eph. the thing is not less certain: let it be observed. and city of Jerusalem. concerning the incarnation of Christ. 1 Peter 1:2) which is not a foreknowledge of faith. ascension. because he has determined they shall be. nor do men feel any such force upon them. 41:22. when they forgive one another. 2:10 Phil. and light things move upwards. he sees all in one view. they act as freely. there is nothing casual or contingent. with respect to second causes. how it will turn up. and then coming out with great substance. 14) of their seventy years captivity in Babylon. and delights in them. approves of them. the predictions of the Old Testament. as there are prophecies. 38) that which is chance to others is none to him. unless prevented by something extraordinary. 8:30. what he has determined either to do himself. and of which Tertullian. and with the full consent of their will. (see 1 King 13:2. There is another sort of "prescience". and of which men themselves may have knowledge. but not of coaction. the prophecies of Daniel. with respect to God. they only imply a necessity of the event. thoughts. it is his will that gives futurition to them. long before they are done. and that fire put to combustible matter will burn. some hundreds of years before they were born: how all this is reconcileable with the liberty of man's will. the Scriptures speak of. many hundreds of years ago. 16:33). 44:7. and of this there are numerous instances. all that is done everywhere. death. 29:10) with many other things relating to that people. as that things ponderous will fall downwards. as the names of persons given them. And this is what is called: "Prescience" or "Foreknowledge". in what they do. that there were as many witnesses of it as there are prophets. may or may not be. (Isa. and which. his sufferings. which should be in the church and world. all are naked and open to him. and have their being in him. as to their nature. yet these are foreknown and foretold by the Lord. and which is not general. nothing comes to pass but what is decreed by him. as Judas in betraying Christ. and the Jews in crucifying him. and takes a particular care of them. "I know you 75 . or suffer to be done. though both were "according to the determinate counsel and foreknowledge of God" (Luke 22:22. but special. as he knows all men. observed. for these are effects and fruits of election. 23. nor do they put anything in it. that he should give orders for the building of the temple. good men willingly do what they do. (Rom. under the influence of grace. What more contingent than the imaginations. Ezra 1:1-3) all which were predicted of these persons by name. and designs of men. 3:37. which flow from it. and what should be done by them. as if there were no foreknowledge and determination of them by God. that God's decrees do not at all infringe the liberty of the will. or "foreknowledge". or force on the will. and burn the bones of men on the altar at Bethel. which. and I may add. 16) and of Cyrus. (Jer. Ps. nor lay any force upon it. and move. or no. and deliverance from thence at the end of that time. "The Lord knows them that are his". he loves them. 2 King 23:15. whether good men or bad men. (Deut. 45:13. as of the Israelites being in a strange land four hundred years. what more a chance matter than a lot? yet though that is cast into the lap. what they will be? and yet these are foreknown before conceived in the mind. that he should offer the priests. (2 Tim.

good and evil. that "he looketh to the ends of the earth. 3. in his own essence and nature. and hence the heathens represent it as seeing all things. God upholds all things. it is his nature and essence. he is unlimited and unbounded as to space. in one eternal view. earth. But as this belongs to the doctrine of predestination. Men are but of yesterday. which admits of no composition. follows upon an account of the onmiscience of God. when there were none in being to inform him of anything: besides. then much more may be said of God. so that the knowledge of God is essential to him. since every accession of knowledge would make an alteration in him. or shall be. and so omniscient. he knows all things in himself. know nothing. yet does not thereby become omniscient. as well as to his perfection: nor does he know things by succession. and therefore must know every creature. nor he himself. and end. and he is unbounded as to power. which. as his beloved and chosen ones. that is infinite. there is no searching. Though enough has been said to prove the omniscience of God. and all that he wills to do in his will. and the conclusion formed. requires onmiscience (see Eccl. and all creatures in himself. Nor is his knowledge attained by reasoning. "such knowledge is too wonderful for us". and he is unbounded as to knowledge. (see Mark 13:32). he is every where. who is a sun. for then it could not be said. science is of a large extent. and some at another. and so eternal. he is from everlasting to everlasting. to suppose this. I shall defer it to its proper place. and disposes of all things in it. whereas with him "there is no variableness". and therefore. imperfect knowledge. and infers other things from them. would be perfect. From each of the works of God his omniscience may be inferred. feeds them. as man's is. and imperfection of knowledge. If the circuit of the sun is from one end of the heaven to the other. and therefore must know everything that has been. and seeth under the whole heaven" (see Ps. in one instant and another. is. neither that. every artificer knows his own work. that "all things are naked and open to him". From his eternity. and so omnipresent. he knows all things possible in his power. "ars longa. and inferring one thing from another. as the first cause of them. and therefore must perfectly know them. Isa. provides for all his creatures. if any thing was wanting in his knowledge. The manner in which God knows all things. will be all brought into judgment by him. and nothing is hid on earth from its light and heat. for him. or any way by which men come at the knowledge of things from others. 2:23). in heaven. he is unbounded as to time. but joins and compounds them. 76 . or at best. for his knowledge. 4. and man's life but short. and therefore is incommunicable to a creature. which to do. 139:7-12) and it may be observed. and through him". and would be contrary to his immutability. for "shall any teach God knowledge?" or "who has taught him?" (Job 21:22. God is infinite. for this would make him beholden to. Likewise from the "omnipresence" of God. In a word. in whose vast and eternal mind are all the original ideas of them. 147:5) he knows himself. though united to a divine person that is omniscient. 40:13. 19:6. he governs the world. 139:6) we can better say in what manner he does not know. till the premises are clear. he has made all things. directs. The knowledge of God is also infinite. 12:14. and is present with them. which he could not. by the enumeration of the above things. which would also argue ignorance of some things. yet not everything. one after another. composition. no coming to the end of his understanding. orders. 14) all things were known to God from eternity. and therefore must have knowledge of them.not". he sees and knows all things at once and. and gives them their portion of meat in due season. whereas "all things are of him. who not only apprehends simple ideas. its nature. we can say but little of it. Job 28:24). (Matthew 7:23) that is. only some at one time. and serves to confirm it: it may be argued from the "perfection" of God. by instruction. 1 Cor. and dependent on another. and though the human soul of Christ may know more than the soul of any man. yet this may receive further proof from the several attributes of God: as from his "infinity". use. and he can gain but little of it. is incomprehensible by us. (Ps. and hell. and everything that is done there. discoursing. and even to the human nature of Christ. which is not to be said of God: and this method of knowledge would be contrary to the simplicity of his nature. (Ps. public and private. (Ps. vita brevis". is not only contrary to his eternity but to his independency. comparatively. Rev. than in what he does: he does not know things by revelation. and so omnipotent. but then this implies some degree of prior ignorance. 4:5. that what is said there of this attribute. together. parts. and therefore must know them all: all the deeds of men. and comnmnication from another.

and has very little wisdom in things civil. Odyss. ENDNOTES: [1] panta idwn diov ofyalmov kai panta nohsav. may it be thought to be with him. who is the Spirit of wisdom and revelation. are chargeable with "folly". 2. that he should know what is perfectly infinite. but directs and uses it. os pant' efora. in comparison of him. can admit the least doubt of it. infinitely more. because of the infinite fulness of wisdom that dwells in him. indeed. and he knows all things "ad infinitum". 263. 16:27. it is perfect. v. 102. [4] Adv. 11. & 12. l. (Job 36:4 and it is not conjectural. and is a more comprehensive attribute than that of knowledge. l. p. depending on his will. l. (Eph. l. 5. those knowing and wise beings. Ode l. (Job 4:18) and as for "man. 1 Tim. si enim scit certe. Val. for it is impossible. sin certe eveniet. and have had a large experience of things. extern. he knew from all eternity. who have lived long. if this is. A Body of Doctrinal Divinity Book 1—Chapter 10 Of The Wisdom Of God The next attribute of God. plurally. there is no defect of it in him. who have no wisdom. 323. but certain. the Wisdom of God. 21). it is consummate and infinite wisdom he is possessed of. An unwise Being cannot be God. And. No man is wise. who is called "wisdoms". he has all wisdom in him. [3] Olymp. to do good he has no knowledge.unless his knowledge was infinite. Not to the exclusion of his Son. for it not only supposes that. Vid. there is 77 . for what is finite. Hesiod. and to the best ends and purposes. and from everlasting to everlasting God. in the best manner. v. 597. (Job 12:12. 1:17. and his will cannot be frustrated. then much more. none in things spiritual. nor his power resisted (Job 42:2). that are. 2. he is born like a wild ass's colt". I shall. Opera et Dies. Maxim. so Epicharmus apud Clement. who is "the ancient of days". 1:20) nor of the Spirit. v. Homer. 2. Marcion. (Prov. God is "all-wise". 7. as a Jewish writer observes. Prove that wisdom is a perfection in God. fol. and is in him in its utmost perfection. 108. illud eveniet. as well as his power and goodness. says Pythagoras. but God only. He is no less than three times said to be "the only wise God" (Rom. ut sciat quid casu et fortuito futurum sit. 5. 1. which requires our attention. 8. c. 68. c. because he determined they should be. there is no searching of his knowledge. That "with him is wisdom". though he would be wise. Stromat. No one that believes the being of a God. Cicero de Divinatione. Jude 1:25). 1:17) but with respect to creatures. is frequently asserted in the sacred scriptures. is. Vita ejus. 1. Dan. [5] "Mihi ne in Deum quidem cadere videatur. can never comprehend that which is infinite. in the knowledge of him. and is expected to be with ancient men. and though he is wise to do evil. nulla fortuna est. Sophoclis Trachin. the angels. 2:20. [6] heliou. [2] Apud Laert. l. when compared with him. and nothing can be added to it. if his knowledge was not perfectly infinite. [7] Joseph Albo in Sepher Ikkarim. most certainly. 13. which belongs to him as an intelligent Spirit. v. that all things would be. 2.

of which he has no need. is what God puts there. which clearly and plainly prove that wisdom. 11:36). in wisdom hast thou made them all!" (Ps. it is unsearchable.nothing of it wanting in him. all that Adam had. 104:24). or shall be. nor an unwise action in any of his works. the attribute now under consideration. which are at once fixed with the highest wisdom. for as all things are of him. or was in Solomon. and under his direction and influence most certainly attain the end. spiritual wisdom. is with him. he is the source and fountain of it. as the wise orderer and disposer of them. and which are linked together. the fear of God in the soul of man. Rom. and not in others. "a depth". and on consultation with themselves and others. the wisest of men. his own glory. 22) and which is effected in the most seasonable time. 2. 1:24) and there is his essential wisdom. in ordaining means suitable and conducive to that end. or in every mechanic. the God and giver of it. for he makes everything beautiful in his time. for the glorifying of himself. (Isa. or last end of them. which is Christ. not an unwise saying appears in all the scriptures. who is often spoken of as wisdom. 11. there are some shining appearances and striking instances of it. it has a bayov. 1 Cor. 16:4. is himself. as the efficient cause. he disappoints the devices of the crafty. the best end that can be proposed. and do a foolish thing: but God. "the Lord hath made". under a divine direction. he pitches upon that which is the most suitable. Will be next observed. there is the personal wisdom of God. the first Cause. or any of his sons. as he that teacheth man knowledge. can be charged with folly. his wisdom directs his will to determine. form wise counsels. all is the gift of God. that is. and in pitching upon the most proper time for execution. (Rom. but because such resolutions and determinations with men are generally the wisest. (Eccl. there is no tracing it. neither in his word. (Isa. And if the princes of this world. and this is seen in appointing the end for which they are to be. As he sees in his understanding. so that his counsel always stands. God is wisdom "efficiently". for as there is a purpose for everything done under the heavens. must have knowledge himself. with respect to anything whatever. as he is love itself. must have infinite wisdom himself. wherefore. there is no wisdom nor counsel against the Lord. one or other of the perfections of his nature. wherefore his "counsel shall stand". his wisdom cannot be separated from his essence. his own glory (Prov. and particularly. they are all in vain. and he would not be that simple and uncompounded Spirit he has been proved to be. this would be contrary to his simplicity. as the final cause. . which is no other than the nature and essence of God. 11:33. or be found out to perfection. 46:10) and though there may be many devices formed to counterwork his designs. for such is the wisdom of God. (see Prov. are called counsels. and make wise and righteous decrees. though it cannot be traced out to the full. Hence the decrees of God. All this is true of the decrees of God in general. so that nothing unforeseen by him can occur to hinder the execution of his purposes. and goodness itself. or is in the politicians and philosophers of every age. and the thoughts of his heart. appointed "all things for himself". which is unfathomable. And which. which are formed on close thought. in its utmost extent. what shall be done. and his determinations without deliberation. and as the times and seasons are in the power of God. the wisest of men sometimes say a foolish word. and which are therefore called his counsels. and he "will do all his pleasure". so he is wisdom itself. The end for which God has appointed all that has been. are to all generations. and as the wisdom of God. which latter are second causes dependmg upon him. and are through him. but he is wise in everything. it is himself. wisdom in the hidden part. 8:12-31. at once. all that is in the angels of heaven comes from him. O Lord. there is a time fixed for every purpose. which are his decrees. so he that gives wisdom to the wise. he foresees all future events. no man is wise at all times. what is fittest to be done. The wisdom of God appears in his purposes and decrees. and the counsel of the froward is carried headlong. 25:1) not that they are the effects of consultation with himself or others. see (Hosea 2:21. the highest and best of wisdom. Acts 1:7) and being the onmiscient God. or appears in every art and science. Men may be wise in some things. The means he fixes on to bring it about. 28:12-23) yet. "nemo sapit omnibus horis". God is essentially wise. though his counsels are without consultation. and in guarding against every thing that may hinder that. are either extraordinary or ordinary. on mature deliberation. And. and at his disposal. the end from the beginning. First. "How manifold are thy works. so they are to him. with what 78 . nor in any of his works. 3:1. Job 11:6-9.

and to show that he is no respecter of persons. justly deserving of it. is without any imputation either of unrighteousness or folly. in which there are various displays of it. that no flesh should glory in his presence: and as he chose those persons to be holy. more hereafter. that good may come. (1 Thess. "endured with much longsuffering". and "to make his power known". or its end is answered: those that are ordained to eternal life most surely believe. but to Christ. Jews and Gentiles. of the highest wisdom. God only can overrule it to serve any good purpose. he passed this decree without any respect to the works of men. or the glorifying of his sovereign grace and mercy in the salvation of men. and Spirit. (Eph. suffered to be. and punishing them for their sins. he chose some out of every nation. And so wicked men are suffered to commit the grossest sins. 9:16). his indignation against sin.greater. and for the good of his people in time. as the selling of Joseph into Egypt by his brethren: and especially the crucifixion of Christ by the wicked Jews. being stored with promises and blessings of all sorts. and so salvation effected. "the counsel of peace". not imputing their trespasses unto them. and in a way consistent with his justice. he has overruled this greatest of all evils. the obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus". peculiarly suitable for them: in appointing Christ to be the Mediator and Surety of it. And likewise the failings and sins of God's people serve for the humbling of them. concerning which the apostle breaks forth into this exclamation. the consequence of which was his fall: and. man to the mutability of his will. are most certainly "called. Rom. as he decreed to leave. through inflicting his judgments on them. nor encouraged to do evil. for then no reconciliation could have been made. their sinful course of life with much patience. he has pitched upon means the wisest that could be devised. the righteousness and death of Christ (2 Thess. for his own glory. Moreover. in this decree of salvation. his end in which being for the glorifying of his justice in their condemnation. so momentous. it appears in making such a covenant which is "ordered in all things". Eph. is the salvation of the elect. but he left. 1 Peter 1:2). even such decrees of God as are about the sinful actions of men. and so are overruled for good. the source of all that has been in the world since. but upon the will of God. and the exercise of their graces. and before either good or evil were done. and belief of the truth. both decreed by God. the glory of the three divine persons. The subordinate end of election. for the greatest good. and his name celebrated with praise and glory (Ex. But of the wisdom of God. by the permissive will of God. 5:9) the scheme and plan of which salvation is so wisely formed. even "sanctification of the Spirit. and things that are not. he chose the foolish and weak things of this world. and for their everlasting happiness. "fitted for destruction" by their own sins. hereafter. for "what if God. even "the vessels of wrath". and to show the freeness of his grace. with respect to the Author. and of such consequence as to affect all mankind. are not destitute of wisdom. and to bring them to a state of holiness and happiness. both in the end and means. by whom atonement is made. 1:5. (Zech. Father. that it is called the "manifold wisdom of God". in taking vengeance on sinners. So that this decree stands firm and stable. Son. and putting the said promises and blessings into his hands. that is what they are appointed to. and rejection of others. and are sometimes apparently overruled for some important end. willing to show his wrath". passing by. 2:13. and 79 . by the execution of which he is known. respecting the leaving. the salvation of men by Christ. 6) to show the sovereignty of it. so in his infinite wisdom. (Rom. he could have prevented it if he would. planning the scheme of their peace and reconciliation. not on the ground of mens' works. 9:23. whereby all his perfections are glorified: so the sinful actions of men are. 8:30). under another head. 9:22). and manner. the election always obtains. could never have been without the knowledge and will of God. The wisdom of God is displayed in his secret transactions with Christ in the covenant of grace. and in the persons he has chosen: his end is the praise of his own grace. The sin and fall of Adam. with what consummate wisdom. justitied and glorified" (Acts 13:48. 11:33) for he is there treating of the decrees of God. as he designed. he appointed them to it (Rom. and they that are predestinated to it. What charge of injustice or folly can be brought against him? Yea. subjects. 6:13) for "God was in Christ reconciling the world of his elect unto himself". the decree of God. "O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God?" (Rom. which was between the Father and the Son. 3:10) and particularly. time. and particularly of the decree of election: and in which the wisdom of God appears. But then by this we are not authorised. as Pharaoh. must the counsels and decrees of God himself be made. that God may be glorified in his justice.

fishes for swimming. in wisdom hast thou made them all!" (Ps. and the fruits of the earth. mouth. for artificers that work in each of them. If we descend into the airy region. and the luminaries. "O Lord. some for clothing. and the cloud is not rent with the weight thereof. dominion was given him over the fishes of the sea. which leaving a 80 . and in the moon that rules by night. the work of his fingers. the subserviency of all creatures to one another. "the cattle on a thousand hills". and feet for walking. how he binds up the water in his thick cloud. 136:5. 2b. called the former and latter rain. and discretion of God (Ps. and more might. either about our earth. not so far from the earth as to be of no use to it. 2b2. as the ultimate end. But. by which they would wash away cities. the tongue. for whose sake the world was made. in all its parts. the subject is not exhausted. which God has in reserve there. for safety and security. in its circular motion. all which were done in eternity. oil to cause his face to shine. silver. and which performs its revolutions so punctually. and especially to man. the herbage of the earth was provided both for food and medicine. summer and winter. and all were made for the glory of God. the wisdom of God in creation. and some more swiftly. and all for the use. to fatten the grain. The wisdom of God is more clearly manifested in his visible works in time. The wisdom of God appears in the works of providence. the other just before harvest. but especially the texture of the human body. the instruments of speech. some more slowly. If we come down to the earth. understanding. scarce anything ever preposterous. and wisely distributes on the earth at proper times. the one when the seed was sown. towns. b1. gold. Rain is given from heaven. and bread that strengthens his heart": and in the bowels of it. as what are wrought with the fingers of men usually are. is very surprising. in their way. framed and disposed for various services. no embroidery. for speaking. the hands and arms for working. in the situation of it. which keep their constant revolutions and stated course. "wine to make his heart glad. we may behold. how manifold are thy works. and with so much regularity. metals and minerals of divers sorts. Secondly. as in Canaan. and when he was created. but causes them to descend in gentle showers. Whole volumes have been written on this subject. the parts of the ear for hearing. it being "curiously wrought". 4:11) and all his works. "the sun knoweth his going down" (Ps. 3:19. and villages. grass growing for the beasts. for his convenience and pleasure. and some for cultivation of the earth. at one time or another. and all things in it. we may observe a wonderful display of divine wisdom. as well as all the other parts of the body. whereby the earth becomes fruitful. and both constantly fell at their usual and appointed times: and where rain is very scarce. night and day. the cattle. and iron. the beasts of the field. 20. the valleys clothed with grain. and burst. that it seems as if it was wise and knowing itself. and could but enter into the treasures of the snow and rain. and in the stars also. we cannot but observe amazing wisdom. And. the pastures covered with flocks. or work with a needle. exceeding it: the organs of the eye are admirably fitted for seeing. If we look up to the starry heavens. Prov. or on its own axis. 104:19). and so exactly answers the end of its destination. and fruitful seasons. must be discerned.and show forth his handywork. nor so near as to hurt it. and vegetation for the service of man. Jer. It may be observed in the various returning seasons. In some of the Eastern countries. in the image of God. brass. "for his pleasure they are and were created". cold and heat. the fountain of heat and light. and to increase the wealth of men: the wisdom. all which shed their benign influences on the earth: particularly in the sun. besides men. rain fell but twice a year. it was designed for an habitation for him. 104:24). to which may be added. beasts for walking and running. birds for flying. how he balances and poises these ponderous bodies. seedtime and harvest. It appears in the works of creation: the making of the heavens and the earth is always ascribed to the wisdom. some for food. as in Egypt. (Rev. that they are not overset. declare his glory. and in small drops. curiously wrought. and lips. before he was created. the river Nile overflows its banks at a certain time of the year. 10:12). Secondly. and was made and furnished with every thing for his use and service. The structure of the bodies of creatures is very wonderfully fitted for their different actions and uses. to bring it up. in the sun that rules by day. as well as the goodness of God.also their persons. some for transportation. placed on it to cultivate it. and fall with their own weight. the fowls of the air. praise him. the innumerable inhabitants of it. whereby nothing is hid from the heat and light of it.

will appear striking and amazing. in opening his hand of providence and satisfying the desires of all living. than it could have been by the obedience of all the angels in heaven. and in his love and pity redeem them. and particularly the Father. the Word that was in the beginning with God. "and to the young ravens that cry". and to do what respected both. and so equal to such an undertaking. and lay his hand on both. But what most of all displays the wisdom of God in this affair. "herein he hath abound towards us in all wisdom and prudence" (Eph. but what there is a necessity of it. on the lost miserable race of men. for the mutual good of men. and of suffering the penalty of the law. and is for the best. and to reconcile to the promises and perfections of God. 8). he was the fittest person to be employed in this service. and the judgments of God are made manifest. and all are seen in one view. death. for whatever goodwill they might bear to such work. In settling upon the person to be the Redeemer. but in this "all" wisdom and prudence. and that are done in it. 2c. meat to all whose eyes wait on him. it was a wise disposition. even his vast numerous family of creatures. nor can he discern art and beauty in it. nor is there anyone trial or exercise they meet with. The wisdom of God is to be seen in the great work of redemption and salvation by Christ. or making them otherwise and better than they are. and sets the one against the other. all need a Redeemer. and answers all the purposes of rain. makes the earth fruitful. which yet was necessary to making 81 . is an abundant proof of the wisdom of God: as it requires wisdom. he was capable of being made under the law. and made more honourable. God manifest in the flesh. in every part. and was God. the Immanuel. and a connection with each other: he wisely governs. and viewed on its right side. everyone agreeable to their nature. and which are now difficult to account for. and that in abundance. and in a proper time. yea. and beholds all that are in it. Being man. or only views it in detached pieces. and his own glory: he does all things after the counsel of his will. as a Son. that since all human nature was depraved and corrupted with sin. and it was more seemly and suitable to his relation and character. the wisdom. nor can anyone redeem himself. and by having two natures. to be appointed. Wisdom and prudence are displayed in other works of God. as well as faithfulness. not only in filling mens' hearts with food and gladness. but in giving to the beasts their food. in the wisest and best manner. but his own Son. and yielding obedience to it. he maketh all things work together for the good of his people. the middle person in the Trinity. he could have compassion. nor committed any such trust unto them. and disposes of the whole world. that so it should be. Thirdly. to be the man to do it. and which appear. than either of the other persons. being broken by the sin of men. he was the only proper person to be the Mediator between God and Man. particularly. and art of the maker are observed with admiration. he sits on the circle of the earth. the wisdom of God. was necessary to his redemption of them. in the same nature that sinned. however.slime. and to make reconciliation for the sins of the people". partaking of both natures. and all things in it. or. the Son of God. is. and reconcile those two parties at variance. in giving largely and liberally. him he appointed and foreordained to be the Redeemer of his chosen people. in an harmonious connection together. He has the charge over the earth. in a steward. and thereby the law is magnified. he orders the various scenes of prosperity and adversity. so as to have a dependance upon. which. rules and overrules all things. and to obey. as when a man looks on the wrong side of a piece of tapestry. united in one person. even "things pertaining to God. suitable to their natures. how a clean and sinless nature could be produced out of an unclean one. God with us. divine and human. and therefore God put no trust in them. none were equal to it. so that there is no finding any thing after him. 1:7. and much less redeem another: nor any of the angels. but when it is all put together. 2c1. The provision made for all creatures. he is scarcely able to make anything of it. so the wisdom of God is wonderfully displayed. he places men in different stations of life. and by whom all things were made. both which have been done by him. to give to everyone under his care their portion of meat in due season. and to make them meet for glory. and to answer the best ends and purposes. which seemed necessary. not any of the sinful race of men. but when the mystery of providence is finished. for the trial of their grace. for they all having sinned. and hereby also satistaction was made for sin. to be sent. or by the sufferings of all the damned in hell. the contrivance. and most proper to be the Mediator. as he had. there is infinite wisdom in the most intricate providences.

he became our near kinsman. Being the mighty God. but the righteousness of a creature. it was flesh he took. tongue. and the glory of God. hence the same word "Goel". The wisdom of God may be observed in the way and manner in which redemption is obtained. The great God is our Saviour. in right. righteousness and peace kiss each other. that it might appear he was no respecter of persons. in the Hebrew language. its sentence be executed. Christ assumed. they both agree. "have found a ransom" (Job 33:24. whereby the end of them would be sufficiently answered. and people. "I". and of no benefit to mankind. who appeared so to themselves and others. since all had sinned. whence what was born of her was the Holy Thing. he had a zeal for God and his glory. which being by the price of the blood of Christ. from 82 . which cleanses from all sin. could they settle upon a proper person to redeem them. but to itself: whereas. being God. one as well as another. and is called the Holy Thing. his righteousness would have been. and in both to show that he could. and of all the wrath and punishment due unto them. the sacrifice of his whole human nature. But then the person settled upon to be the Redeemer. Ps. which seemed to clash with one another. and so as he had pity for men as man. and bone of our bone. and upon all them that believe. have destroyed them all. as a divine person. The wisdom of God appears in the persons fixed upon to be redeemed. is to be ascribed solely to the wisdom of God: had all men been summoned together. under the weight of all the sins of his people. are reconciled: mercy insisting that the sinner be pardoned and saved. and is unto all. and would be. through the union of the human nature to the person of the Son of God. 5:6-8. the seed of Abraham. and punishment inflicted. without spot to God.atonement for sin in it. is God as well as man. partly to show the sovereignty of God. but an human nature. and he claims it to himself. in redeeming whom he pleases. punishment inflicted for it. that so the rights and honours of law and justice might be maintained. concerned for the glorifying all his divine perfections. and his justice in the destruction of others. have surmounted by Christ's birth of a virgin. and this declared unto them. but ungodly sinners. through Christ's being man. signifies both a redeemer and a near kinsman. by this happy method wisdom has settled upon. as man. and so the right of redemption belonged to him. 20). flesh of our flesh. but from the moment of its production was taken into union with the person of the Son of God. 2c3. to redeem them? this is "nodus deo vindice dignus". that God was willing they should be redeemed. to glorify his grace and mercy in the redemption of some." Sin is condemned in the flesh of Christ. and yet the sinner saved from sin. "mercy and truth meet together. and justice requiring that the law should take place. which difficulty infinite wisdom. and had the angels been called in to assist with their counsel. which was wisely ordered for our good. but has redeemed some out of every nation. his sacrifice. and was offered up. in union with himself. Hence his righteousness is the righteousness of God. it became the righteousness of God. and in a way of full satisfaction to law and justice. and likewise. the only wise God. 10). Add to this. after long consultation. but not a person. the actions and sufferings of it would have been finite. in order to show the freeness of it. for had it been a distinct person of itself. and whereas his view therein is to magnify the riches of his grace. he was mighty to save. Being God. and suffering. he could put an infinite virtue into his actions and sufferings. and were deserving of death. not the good and the righteous. for who could have thought of the Son of God. and so sufficient to put away sin. and proposed his becoming man. as he was. and almighty power. and partly. not all men. it never subsisted of itself. the different claims of mercy and justice. if he pleased. that it might be glorified. he sent Christ to die for. Once more. but some. which. Now the finding out such a fit person to be the Redeemer of men. a divine person. and could have been of no use. 89:19. the blood of the Son of God. and his own arm has wrought out salvation. under the overshadowing of the Holy Ghost. he has not limited the grace of redemption to any particular family or nation. what Go only could have found out. and redeem. though pure and spotless. which otherwise must have been intolerable. the worst and chief of sinners (Rom. by a full satisfaction for it. and so imputable to many. vengeance is taken on it. he could support the human nature. his blood. that it was not an human person. 2c2. and so could be. kindred. and dying in the stead of men. they would never have been able to have proposed one fit for this work.

by all which it may be most clearly seen. mortal men. The wisdom of God shines in the Gospel. to destroy himself. and God would have them no longer. hypocrisy. relief. which. Through envy he sought the ruin of men. throughout the world: and as it is a church and kingdom not of this world. no weapon formed against it has prospered. it was after the faith and patience of God's people had been sufficiently tried. without dread and terror. and now with ordinances. had any other been appointed. end. in all ages. that the excellency of the power may be of God. and not angels. grace accepts of it in the room and stead of sinners. contrived it. the wine poured out. there was need of a Saviour and Redeemer. refreshment. of his blood shed. and comfort of God's people. blindness. frail. a soul emptying grace. 2:7. statutes. in the infinite wisdom of God. and the pardon of sin. in which this treasure is put. to destroy his works. shadows. and resurrection from the dead: the ordinance of the supper. to spoil his principalities. and abounded with all kind of wickedness. and yet through the blood of Christ. and ignorance. more agreeable to its adult state. and in its ordinances. so that "God is just. authorities. then said Christ. but spiritual means. by types. had been prefigured. Justification is by the free grace of God. as well as the conversion of sinners. it is of faith. for "who can declare his generation". and must be the fittest. Eph. and a standing ministry is wisely fixed. his burial. to minister the word and administer ordinances. that the Son of God should be manifested in human nature. in the fulness of time fixed and agreed upon between the Father and the Son. Redemption is also wrought out in a way most mortifying to Satan. The wisdom of God is to be discerned in the time of man's redemption. the bread broken is a proper emblem of his broken body. and powers. baptism to represent the overwhelming sufferings of Christ. to the highest pitch of honour and glory imaginable. wrath. it was in due time. and gives him all the glory: pardon of sin is of free grace. "Lo. he forgives sin. angels. when the church was in a few families. by which men are justified. 2e. earthen vessels. and are glorified by it: the ordinances of the Gospel are wisely instituted to answer the end of them. it is supported. is commensurate to the law and justice of God. while the justifier of him that believes in Jesus": the grace of faith is wisely appointed to receive this righteousness. suited to the infant state of the church. this being a soul humbling. and increased. that one of the woman's seed he had ruined. 2d. and takes vengeance on the inventions of the sinner: pardon proceeds upon the foot of satisfaction. and yet in strict justice. and so both grace and justice agree in it. which grace provides. should bruise his head. that itself is called. to instance only in justification. Christ was sent to redeem sinners. formality. when the Gentile world was covered with darkness. and triumphed in it: but what a mortification must it be to that proud spirit. and not of men. Wisely has God appointed men. when immorality. under the gospel dispensation. Fourthly. and the lives of men long. who may be heard and conversed with. &c. (1 Cor. brought it about. to show forth his death. the manifold wisdom of God". and all for the glory of God. without the written word. 3:10) every doctrine is a display of it. "men of the same passions with others". would not have been so apparent. that it might appear to be of grace. principalities. and his soul poured out unto death for sinners. the wickedness of it? then. and the use. and efficacy of sacrifices had been sufficiently known. which receives all from God. and be exalted in the same nature. amidst all the persecutions of men. and redeem mankind. which was the most opportune and seasonable. to sit at the right hand of God. even for the space of four thousand years from the first hint of a Redeemer. and sacrifices. and wonderfully has it been preserved. God is just and faithful to forgive it. and ordinances. to be continued to the end of the world. the good news of salvation by Christ. and his sacrifice. in its doctrines. after the Saviour. The wisdom of God may be seen in the government and preservation of the church of God. and God has 83 . as well as gracious and merciful. then with written laws. I come". the hidden wisdom. not by worldly. "the wisdom of God in a mystery. in guiding them by immediate revelation. in all ages. Fifthly. for the use. among the people of Israel. and ruin. grace provided Christ to work out a righteousness. for so long a time. and grace imputes it to them: the righteousness of Christ. and that pride and boasting might be excluded. and is both an act of grace and of justice.condemnation. and neglect of the word and worship of God among the Jews revailed. subject to him! 2c4.

the settlement of them in the various parts of the world. and his will being thus wisely directed. Vit. that is his secret will. with respect to the world and church. by events in providence. to do what he knows is most fitting to be done. the rise of states and kingdoms. and in the people of Israel. from Adam. ENDNOTES: [1] Laert. while it is in his own breast. "The will of the Lord be done" (Acts 21:14). (Eph. "the counsel of his will" (Eph. or to suffer to be done. which has been established. as they are the one God. the latter only a manifestation of it. (Acts 16:6. it is not to be separated. as man. which would be contrary to the simplicity of God.made it. or to do by others. with respect to both: to the world. which are impenetrable to others. or to his being a simple. 2. to the Father. the will of God is no other than God himself willing. that is. 17:24) and who also. from Noah. the counsels and determinations of his mind. Will is ascribed to each of the divine persons. it may be distinguished. of which it is composed. antecedent and consequent. &c. 12:11). (John 6:38. as a divine person. it is essential to him. Whatever God has determined within himself. as well as to will. and will still more make it to appear. effectual and ineffectual. "Having made known unto us the mystery of his will". is called. uncompounded Spirit. the former is properly the will of God. "Who has resisted his will" (Rom. and the sovereignty of it. for in all intelligent beings there is a will. such as into absolute and conditional. from the coming of Christ to the end of the world. A will is frequently ascribed to God in Scripture. whether to do himself. 7) and he is said to divide his gifts to each men. the thoughts of his heart. has a will distinct from that. A Body of Doctrinal Divinity Book 1—Chapter 11 Of The Will Of God. and in the line of Shem. and not to suffer some things to be done. so he has a will. I now proceed to consider his Will. or by prophecy. such are the deep things of God. but when these open. p. His understanding influences and guides his will. and so the manifestation of his secret will. the general providence of God. as well as an understanding. I shall not trouble the reader with all the distinctions of it made by men. And The Sovereignty Of It Having considered the attributes of God which belong to his understanding. in the line of Seth. or as a part of it. and particularly the four monarchies. 40) to the Son. is no other than the execution. And these three. then they become the revealed will of God. 1:9) and in many other places. Prove that there is a Will in God. that he rules in Jacob unto the ends of the earth. as he "will" (1 Cor. God's secret will becomes revealed by events in providence. as an intelligent Spirit. they agree in one. but for our better understanding it. it is his nature and essence. and his will determines all his actions. (John 6:39. the greatest 84 . or by prophecy. the distinction of the "secret" and "revealed" will of God has generally obtained among sound divines. (John 5:21. whether it be considered general or special. to not allow them. so in God. as in angels and men. or to be considered as distinct from it. though subjected to it. and others vain and useless. its production. and to not allow is an act of the will. from Abraham. 1:11). who is said to forbid. 9:19). some are false. Philosoph. and the succession of them: to the church. the origin of nations. his knowledge and wisdom. 1. I shall next show what the will of God is: there is but one will in God. And shall. 8. Proeem. to the coming of Christ: and the book of Revelation is a discovery of the secret will of God with respect to both. as he has an understanding which is infinite and unsearchable. and is not made known by any event in providence. in one mind and will. Luke 22:42) and to the Spirit.

The providence of God may be considered as special with respect to particular persons. 1:4. There is the revealed will of God in the Gospel. but then. and come out with great substance: nor did God hide from Abraham what he secretly willed to do. So that. God has performed what is appointed for us. These are now already revealed. and "that they should never perish. as Job says of himself. as related to us. part of the will of God is. and acceptable will of God (Rom. and though we know that we shall die. sufferings. and the rest will be. which respects the kind intentions. his incarnation. and the antichristian states. had their names written in the book of life (Phil. yet it cannot be certainly known. as it might be by the apostle. that he has appointed these to salvation by Christ. secret. in a judgment of charity. that Clement. in a great measure. whereby he knew his duty to God. that remains in the secret will of God. and gracious regards of God to men. 12:2). were all signified beforehand. 4:3. that he has chosen some to everlasting life and happiness. who do by nature the things contained in it. in what manner and circumstance. but God only. yet as to particular persons interested herein. and appointed him to be their Saviour. may be known by the Gospel coming with power into the heart. written on tables of stone. and the spiritual and personal kingdom of Christ. and so the rest. and the glory that should follow. both of the just and unjust. the conversion of the Jews. the time and circumstances of our birth. yet it is not quite clear. obedience. whether in an adverse or prosperous way. and enjoy the privileges of it: and in regeneration the law of God is put into the inward parts. by the renewing of their minds. The will of God. and death. that after death there will be a judgment. as what has been observed plainly shows. but have everlasting life" (Eph. it has been usual for the Lord to do nothing but what he reveals to his servants the prophets. Some things which belong to the secret will of God become revealed by prophecy. 85 . as yet. It is the revealed will of God. their savoury discourses. as well as a person appointed to judge the world in righteousness. and holy conversation. as the destruction of antichrist. in providence. who being transformed. yet it is not attained to but by such who are favoured with a full assurance of faith. because of their declared experiences. and discovers what before was his secret will concerning them. 5. that there shall be a resurrection of the dead. This respects man's duty both to God and men. 40. it is. But then. as he observes. and though it is revealed. and there is a time fixed for every purpose. that is revealed. though sadly obliterated by sin. this. and that it is the will of God that these should be regenerated and sanctified. 1 Thess. who our parents. though all this is the revealed will of God. no. in the Gospel. John 6:39. there is a mixture. to be performed by him. be concluded of them. and other fellow labourers of his. there is a purpose or secret will of God. and be afflicted. particularly all things concerning Christ. with respect to the same subject. and by a work of grace upon it. to the prophets. and came from heaven to earth to do it. indeed. but when and where. yet "of that day and hour knows no man". with respect to every man. which he would have done by men. and a time to die. by inscribing it on his heart. John 6:38. and hold the tenure of the land of Canaan. offices. and written on the hearts of God's people. 2:18). according to which they were to behave themselves. though it may. perfect. according to the secret will or purpose of God. &c. election of God. not the angels. that is called "his will" (Rom. that they are the elect of God. so it was made known to Abraham. not theirs. upon the whole. a time to be born. "many such things are with him". and as to others. in his secret will. Matthew 18:14). come to know what is the good. we know not. yet there are some remains of it in the Gentiles. though the time when they will take place is still in the secret will of God. that a day is fixed. and has finished it. and the bringing in of the fulness of the Gentiles. a secret. that his seed. is revealed in the law. we know what has befallen us. and that all must appear before the judgment seat of Christ. by the finger of God. and part of it revealed.part of which has been fulfilled. but by divine revelation. and what was secret becomes revealed: so we know that we are born. as. 4:3). four hundred years. and the knowledge of it should be sought after. that Christ undertook to do this will of God. though there is some foundation for this distinction of the secret and revealed will of God. This was made known to Adam. which show the work of the law written in their hearts: a new edition of this law was delivered to the Israelites. by the Spirit of Christ in them. and for everything that befalls men between their birth and death: all which open in time. We know not what shall befall us. should be in a land. in destroying Sodom and Gomorrah: and.

even while they are doing it. 3b1a. he cannot but will his own glory. and do not depend upon the will of God: but it is his own glory. All things without himself. First. for his own glory (Prov. "He doth according to his will in the army of heaven". God himself. is into that of precept and purpose. as the wise Disposer of them. into whose hearts God put it to fulfil his will. all things are made by him. if the Lord will. All things in providence. 28) and the ten kings. "Thou hast created all things. and his power reaches to all that is possible. and modes of subsisting. and the thoughts of his heart are to all generations". not his Being. in doing what they did against Christ. as "all things are of him". in giving their kingdoms to the beast. and submitted to in every state and condition of life. 16:4). and made void. to his glory. 3b1. the Jews and Gentiles. and "through him". "The Lord hath made all things for himself". is that which is often spoken of in Scripture. if the word may be allowed. and which is desirable they might have knowledge of. we will do this. "his counsel stands. James 4:13-15) and this should be owned and acknowledged. 3b. from love. and all were made according to his will. "they are and were created". yet not omnivolent or all willing. What are the objects of it. and by none perfectly. or in our friends and relations. or by thy will. and for thy pleasure". for though he knows all things knowable. wherefore. Col. (Acts 4:27. and what is acceptable to him. this is done but by a few. he does all things in heaven and earth after his will. as Herod and Pontius Pilate. so they are "to him". or in whatsoever befalls us in our own persons. properly speaking. and keeping his commands. and to the glory of God: every good man desires to do it in the best manner. though God is said to be omniscient and omnipotent. whether of prosperity or adversity. 4:11) even the heavens. as Amesius observes. 12:50. as "he will not give his glory to another". and the breathing of the Spirit. and last end of all. if it could be. as the final Cause. even "very good". cannot be resisted. as the efficient Cause. God. 1:9. in the heavenly host of 86 . and every other. and be complete in (Matthew 7:21. God's kingdom of providence rules over all. not a sparrow falls to the ground without the will of God. though not made. or that might be willed. which consists of the fear of God. the other is his Word: this is the rule of his own actions. perfections. earth. and all that in them are. and have no knowledge of this. Secondly. This is the rule of mens' duty. or his commanding will. and is made to render men inexcusable that do it not. and the other. his Will. properly speaking. All things in nature. saying. 3a. as what should be done by men. (Rev. 4:12). and to all events that befall them. and extends to all creatures. even as it is done by angels in heaven. All good things. and sea. shows what he approves of. angels and men. when it is done aright it is done in faith. as the paternity of the Father. between the objects of God's knowledge and power and the objects of his will. the generation of the Son. in his understanding. (1 Cor. by the declaration of this his will. 17:17) and this will of God should be bore in mind in everything we intend to do or go about. that is. when done aright. (Rev. whether good or evil. the counsel of it. that would be to deny himself. yet he wills not all things willable. First. 4:19. and this he wills necessarily. and to make it appear right in justice to inflict punishment on such persons. frustrated. is the one and only will of God. he cannot will it to another. and this is sometimes fulfilled by those who have no regard to his will of precept. indeed.The most accurate distinction of the will of God. (Acts 21:14) and this. every sin is a transgression of it. are the objects of his will. and all were originally good that were made by him. 3. he does whatever he wills. and this will is always done. 3b1b. God's will of precept. I shall next inquire. and that. He wills his own glory in all he does. or what his will is some way or other concerned in: there is a difference. perfectly. The decreeing will of God is only. These naturally and necessarily exist. and. or the commanding and decreeing will of God.

and vitiosity of it: as an action. and distresses. Not that God wills these things for the sake of them. 3b2a. nor that he should will the punishment of them. be reckoned. (Lam. for he either wills it or not wills it: the latter cannot be said. as it is an aberration from the law of God. order. or for the sake of itself. he is the fountain and source of all action and motion. they are according to the will of God. it is of God. nor not wills it. Ezek. 9. in punishing some of his posterity. since he made a provision. as they are to wicked and ungodly men. and the ataxy. and appointed. and treated as such. God cannot will it as sin. 3:37) or he neither wills it. they do not spring out of the dust. as to quality. God not willing it. which is an obligation to punishment. 4:3). holiness. 3:39) all judgments. is of men only. all spiritual blessings in Christ. he abhors and detests it. If they are in a way of punishment. and appointment of God. it will be proper to consider. duration. which come upon kingdoms. ordered. 1:12). is founded upon some certain and immutable cause. 1 Thess. and this may be considered either as natural or moral. nor of his mercy: to which may be added. in him all live. there could be no display. quantity. Jude 1:4). and the concourse of his providence. he is of purer eyes than even to behold it with approbation and delight. that such and such things will be. Zep. because he has determined in his will they shall be. for the saving of men out of it. Secondly. and goodness of God. 1:3-5. and saving others: the sin of Joseph's brethren selling him into Egypt. 6:9. but those who are atheistically inclined (see Ezek. that God foreknew sin would be. nor concern at all with it. which can be no other than the divine will. consistent with his purity and holiness: that the will of God is some way or other concerned with it is most certain. 1 Thess. move. neither of his punitive justice. (Dan. which are of two sorts. that God's foreknowledge of sin most fully proves his will in it. and particular persons. is certain. (Lam. which cannot be admitted. All evil things are the objects of God's will. that is sin: about this there is some difficulty how the will of God should be concerned in it. he takes no pleasure in it. barely considered. "and among the inhabitants of the earth". Now certain and immutable foreknowledge. before the world was. cities. 7. Besides. and a transgression of it. certainly. that is. as the fall of Adam. James 1:18. 4:35) there is nothing comes to pass but what God has willed. sanctification. 3:3) and which are consistent with the justice. and other divines argue. since they are less than their sins deserve. all grace given to the elect Christ. there is no reason to complain of them. disorder. 3b1b. the choice of them in Christ. or as taking delight in the afflictions and miseries of his creatures. and not at all unworthy of a righteous God to will to inflict on them. as Beza. To set this affair in the best light. whether in a way of chastisement. (Job 23:14. what is in sin. and it cometh to pass. he has no care about it. but for the sake of some good to be brought about through it. before it was. 18:32) but for the sake of some good: the afflictions of his people are for their spiritual good. Mic. 87 . All things in grace are according to the will of God. about the act of sin. as the fall of Adam. rregularity. (Acts 17:28) but then the vitiosity and irregularity of it. for the glorifying of his justice and mercy. 16:4. 1:9. as well as for his own glory: and the punishment of the wicked is for the glorifying of his justice. 16:22). he forbids it. (Lam. regeneration. such as the foreknowledge of God. and according to his will. when the Lord commandeth it not?" (Lam. redemption through his blood. 11. and have their being. ends. and God cannot be said to will this. wisdom. 3b2. and appoint and foreordain them to it for it (Prov. or of punishment: if in a way of chastisement. calamities. in Christ. are all of God. and the eternal inheritance. 3:37). There is "malum culpae". predestination to adoption by him. accounted. and relative to it: there is the act of sin. because nothing comes to pass. and there is the guilt of sin. all are according to the good pleasure of his will (2 Tim. The only difficulty is. and the punishment itself. and so it is outside the area of jurisdiction. and not within the reach of his providence. and so other sins (see 2 Sam. "Who is he that saith. or the evil of fault and blame. Concerning the two last there can be no difficulty. 3:33. but are by the will. Eph. without which. nor come by chance. 9:9. nations. unless God had voluntarily permitted sin to be. the evil of afflictions. "Malum poenae". and uses. as they are to the people of God. or the act. towns. none can be performed. that God should will that men that sin should become guilty. and which none will say. or lie under obligation to punishment. God foreknows.angels. and according to his will (Amos 3:6). 3b1c. love. 12:11.

certainly. so if his knowledge is eternal. and by "suffering" them to walk in their own sinful ways. to the will and purpose of God. but permits it to be done. since there is a wide difference between doing it himself. excellence. but to his knowledge. that was. for if God is eternal. Hence also his will is incommunicable to a creature. his will must be eternal. but as that they approve of it. First. or willing what it did not. 81:12. and doing it by others. even it was incommunicable to the human nature of Christ. in such senses. (Heb. (Acts 15:18) and now as God's foreknowledge arises from his will. or from everlasting. God foreknows what will be. and with whom there is no shadow of turning. Thirdly. though there may be distinctions of his will. he is the same yesterday. and if prior to them. being ignorant of its nature. on such a footing. then prior to time. for there is but one God. when it ceases to will what it has willed. even from everlasting to everlasting God. (Hosea 4:9. today. winch only can make him the author of sin. (Ps. nor the same in eternity he is in time. then his will must he eternal. as he certainly is.for the good of Joseph and his father's family. Once more. and for ever: and from the "foreknowledge" of God. and different objects of it. The will of God is "eternal". he would not be the same in time he was in eternity. as he is. which was not in eternity. what shall be. 1:28) and of the papists (2 Thess. for of an unknown thing there can be no desire and will: but such a change of will can never take place in God. supposes previous ignorance of the thing now begun to be willed. as has been observed. and others. but if any new will arises in God in time. whose understanding is infinite: or a creature changes its will. or shall be to the end of it. but a voluntary permission. which is either of choice. 4b. (Rom. and utility. God may will one sin as a punishment for another. Luke 22:42). and therefore must be prior to the existence of the world. whereas. now are. 4. in crucifying Christ. for we know of nothing before time but what is eternal. since it is not only contrary to his eternity and immutability. And. God is "in one mind". though God may be said. either by beginning to will what it did not before. yet he wills it in a different way than he wills that which is good. his will is himself willing. it is his very nature and essence. and therefore cannot be chargeable with being the author of sin. yet it is by one single eternal act of will he wills all things. there is but one undivided nature common to them all. Likewise. even before the foundation of the world. yet his divine will. whose nature and essence is one. or ordering it to be done. And besides. (Eph. there would be a change in him. must be eternal. acquiesce in it. Secondly. The nature and properties of the will of God. "Known unto God are all his works. and which is not a bare permission. as it is most certain he has in the case of the Israelites. or of obligation to it. but by his permissive will. because he has determined. and is expressed by God's "giving" up men to their own hearts' lusts. who changes not. for though there are three persons in the Godhead. 1:4) and as the decree and determination of the will of God was so early. and his human will. though the one is subject to the other (John 6:38. 2:9-12). I proceed to consider. to will sin. The will of God is "immutable": immutability is expressly ascribed to the counsel of God. then his will must be the same. or will. as may be concluded from the attribute of "eternity". for if God is unchangeably the same. and therefore there can be but one will in God. and they agree in one. Acts 14:16) he wills it not by his effective will. or by ceasing to will what it has willed: now the cause of beginning a new will. that is. and so but one will: they are one. was from the beginning. since it is his nature and essence: and from his "immutability". nor to do it by others. though taken into union with the person of the Son of God. not knowing the fitness and propriety of it. 6:17) and may be established from the attribute of "immutability". before men had done either good or evil. or from eternity. which is eternal. and divers ways in which he wills. 4a. 88 . are distinct from each other. of choice. since it is his nature and essence: a change is made in the will of a creature. from the beginning of the world". in his will. and if prior to time. for the redemption and salvation of men. he does not will to do it himself. and voluntarily permitting or suffering it to be done by others. and the sin of the Jews. and submit unto it. the will of God is concerned with "all things" that have been "from the beginning" of the world. this may be illustrated by the decree of "election". 10. 13) of the heathen philosophers. 4c. It is natural and "essential" to him. the will of God cannot otherwise be a creature's. and things in it. the same may be concluded of all others: add to all which.

Sixthly. or it failed of accomplishment. 14:24. Fifthly. so shall it come to pass. but this can never be said of God. and things contained in it. because it cannot accomplish its will. it shall stand" (Isa. so is his will. and therefore drops it. being obliged unto it. saying. if. and who can turn him?" his will is not to be turned nor altered. wherefore. 4:11) and the making of it. God willed to save all men conditionally. as I have thought. and his will would be dependent on another. would be contrary to his simplicity. his counsel always stands. it gives him uneasiness. or feeble degrees of volition in God. nor is there any final cause of what he wills and does but his own glory. and it would be madness to seek for a cause of his willing that: and from this property of the will of God. before established: he may indeed be said to will one thing for another. and good works. for this same reason. Austin calls it. but then that which he wills for another. before whom all things are at once and together. is equally the same? destruction is equally willed as salvation. and all things in it. The will of God is always efficacious. and so the contrary. The will of God has "no cause" out of himself. even from all eternity: or else of force. "actus simplicissimus". he hath sworn. or wills.when something unforeseen occurs. and who shall disannul it?" yea. he would be "frustrated" and disappointed of his end: but as nothing comes to pass which man says. "He is in one mind. is no moving cause of his will. and where is the general love of God to men. Seventhly. and not the will of God. because there is in him no passive power to work upon. 27). holiness. 4e. he does whatever he pleases. active Spirit: if he consisted of act and power. and more excellent than that. otherwise he would not be almighty. and orders. But of these things see more under the attribute of "immutability". but neither of them the cause of the will of God. the will of God. who is the blessed. "For the Lord of hosts hath purposed. it may be clearly discerned. it must be either for the better or the worse. would be the first and chief in the attainment of the end thereby. it makes him unhappy. that it was made. there would be somewhat. before treated of. which causes it to change its will. for then there would be something prior to him. is owing to the sovereign will of God. to say no more. Fourthly. there are no wishes. yea. and takes another course: "But who hath resisted his will". higher than the highest. few have asserted. the most High. That the world is eternal. he would not be happy: when a man's will is ineffectual. and can never be contradicted by any: and was his will ineffectual. and the Lord commands it not. a pure. and he ever does his pleasure. if his will is not fulfilled. to save and to destroy. who does not see that this conditional will. no not by the prayers of his people. 4g1. for then it would be dependent on the condition to be performed. never made null and void. he would not be the simple and uncompounded Spirit he is. And. and to damn them if these conditions are wanting. on condition of faith and repentance. so as to cause him to cease from it. wills. no cause of his will in the rejection of others. he is purely act. or some one "superior" to him. his will is always effected. as every cause is before its effect. whereas he is God over all. but the performance of the condition. 4d. blessed forevermore. these may have the nature of cause and effect between themselves. and he cannot accomplish it. 89 . and either way it would betray imperfection in him. is not conditional. The will of God is most free and sovereign. so much talked of? there is none at all to any. and so he not be the independent Being he is: nor can there be any impulsive or moving cause of his will. and the scriptures assert. to what else but to his sovereignty can it be ascribed. as he is omnipotent. but he never changes his will: repentance attributed to him is no proof of it. would-bes. God may change his outward dispensations of things. 4g. cannot be the cause of God's will in the election of any to eternal life. the blessed God. that is. so everything the Lord says. that foreseen faith. (Rev. and drop it? If God changes his will. and take another course: but nothing of this kind can befall God. for instance. his most omnipotent will: if this was not the case. The will of God. which cannot be said. From the making of the world. and greater and more excellent than he. Besides if his will was not efficacious. "Surely. most certainly comes to pass. to be impelled or moved by any cause. as to time and order. as he is: it must be for want of power. 4f. naked and open. and as I have purposed. as appears. and want of wisdom.

if he pleased? or that he made this world no larger than it is. or say unto him. and no mercy shown to any of them. not only as men. and that before good or evil are done by them. but to the sovereign will of God? and how otherwise can be accounted for the many abortions. and all things in it. but arrive to a full age. for to what else can it be ascribed. the greatest monarch then on earth.that he has not made more worlds than he has. honour. by Christ. and. when others are left to perish in their sins: for which no other cause can be assigned than the sovereign will and pleasure of God. and. The sovereignty of the will of God appears in providence. but to the sovereign will of God? some are raised to great honour and dignity. what dost thou?" (Dan. when he could have made them all in a moment. as a man and monarch. in providence. and no weaknesses in their death. nor from the South. and these of different sorts. and upon a dunghill. childhood. to their graves. while a large number of them were suffered to rebel against God. but his sovereign will and pleasure. miscarriages. According to which also e dispenses his gifts to men. after all. as in the births and deaths of men. The will of God appears to be sovereign in things sacred. have made ten thousand worlds? or that he should make this world when he did. and nation. restored to twice the wealth and riches he had before. and be preserved from apostasy. in such an age. in their states. but the sovereign will of God? Among men. and religious. as has been to many of the apostate race of Adam. whom he wills. spiritual. and others live in a very low. and abject state. as he pleases. and not before? and that they should go out of the world at the time. but die in their full strength: while others drag on a life attended with a variety of infirmities and disorders. 4g3. but are obliged to refer them to his sovereign will and pleasure. if he would? or that he should be six days making that. as soon as their eyes are opened in this world. was degraded from his dignity. that such and such men should be born. and hardens others. and not sooner. in the estate in which they were created. and others. and God is the maker both of the rich and poor. some he chooses to everlasting happiness. and brought into the world. and made no more kinds and species of creatures than he has. just as he. but promotion comes neither from the East. 4g2. and come to their graves like a shock of corn fully ripe? And a multitude of other things might be observed. and this is the case of the best of men: to what can it be imputed. was stripped of all his riches. when he could have made it millions of ages before. which. and to become and live like one of them. their strength is firm. Some are free from sickness and diseases of body all their days. which extorted from him such an acknowledgment of the sovereign will of God as perhaps is no where more strongly expressed. some fitting for public service. and driven to dwell among beasts. when others not only go through the stages of infancy. who gives no account of his matters to the children of men. as Agur's prayer shows. even out of every kindred. What other reason can be given for all this. and in the height of his grandeur. and sets up another. "He doth according to his will in the army of heaven. and glory. was restored to his reason. after a while. for which they were cast down from heaven to hell. and resolves to save. and others he passes by and rejects. who was for many years the greatest man in all the East. in the manner and circumstances they do? and that there should be such difference in men. though God has wise reasons for them. 4:35). nor from the West. and when in the most flourishing circumstances. that some should be rich. in his sovereignty. mean. if he would. as in Job. conditions. and none can stay his hand. he has mercy on some. untimely births. and reserved in chains of darkness. on a sudden. and some he hates. people. but as rich and poor men: and to what can this difference be attributed. to the judgment of the great day. and former greatness. and then. some God loves. and among the inhabitants of the earth. and these differences and changes may be observed in the same persons. tongue. So Nebuchadnezzar. and to his throne. are shut again. and such he makes 90 . and those he has made no more numerous than they be? no reason can be assigned. and in which his sovereignty may be seen. both with respect to angels and men: as that some of the angels should be elect. infants that never saw light. and leave their first state. and confirmed by the grace of Christ. but of the will of God. and in the various events of it. but God puts down one. who could. and circumstances in life. wills and pleases: some are redeemed from among men. and manhood. as to ministers of the gospel. which are neither of them of the will of men. are unaccountable to us. and others poor? riches and poverty are both at the disposal of God. and there is a time for both fixed by his will.

sometimes in one place. Loc. and among these. to some greater to others less. Love stands in the first place. A Body of Doctrinal Divinity Book 1—Chapter 12 Of The Love Of God Next to the attributes which belong to God. 18. says Christ. repentance. they are ascribed to him. to some it is only given. and withheld from Judas. Commun. God gave his word to Jacob. a gift of Christ. is given only by him. and how apparent is the sovereignty of God in favouring our British Isles. is given to those who were called to labour in the vineyard in the eleventh hour. and gives them gifts differing from one another. to as many as the Father has given him. whom he pleases. dividing to every man individually as he wills. &c. as an intelligent Spirit. who denied his Lord. 195. and hides them from the wise and prudent. through Christ. according to his sovereign pleasure: the means of grace. and other nations knew them not. and others very little. c. and ears that they hear not." The special gifts of the grace of God. and this enters so much into the nature 91 . But though the will of God is sovereign. of his own will he regenerates some. was bestowed on Peter. to some. l. and his will is therefore called "counsel". when so great a part of the world is denied them. from which must be removed everything that is carnal. c. and the great things of it. have been disposed of. and sometimes in another. pity. and not to others. and his statutes unto Israel. just as seemed good in his sight. which are similar to affections in intelligent beings. 7. to his understanding and will. 1:11). when and by what means. yet there being some things said and done by him. nor does he give any other reason for such a conduct. [3] De Civitate Dei. and is covered with Pagan. &c. Papal. eyes that they see not. anger. as love. "even so Father". for many hundreds of years. properly speaking.whensoever he pleases. are bestowed upon men according to the sovereign will of God. and to others the savour of death unto death. and to these alike. [2] Vide Maccov. but God wills nothing contrary to his perfections of wisdom. In short. To what can all this be resolved. 13. to whom he would make them known. which seems to mean eternal happiness. l. The graces of the Spirit of God are given to some. as to those who bore the heat and burden of the day: some do much service for Christ. those which may be called "Affections". but into the sovereign will of God? who says. 47. as for nstance. c. he being a most pure and simple act. to some one talent and to others five. and yet all share the same glory. Faith. and "the counsel of his will" (Isa. "the savour of life unto life. with the gospel. calls by his grace. hatred. which is the gift of God. for though. reveals the gospel. s. in all ages. Eph. which is a grant from God. the ministry of the word and ordinances. and these have been since distributed among the Gentiles. sensual. it always acts wisely: some sovereign princes will things rashly and foolishly. and not others. may be considered. "Is it not lawful for me to do what I will with my own?" (Matthew 20:15). and Mahometan darkness? and still more it is manifest in that these outward means are. 24. eternal life. 46:10. when others have a spirit of slumber. holiness. these Isles afar off. according to his purpose. all men have it not. that betrayed him. there are none in God. "for so it seemed good in thy sight". 1. justice. p. the penny. and gospel ordinances. or has any degree of imperfection in it. 25:1. ENDNOTES: [1] Medulla Theolog. free from all confusion and disorder. which is the free gift of God. in the parable.

17:5. 17. Matthew 3:17. (Col. 5:21) by making Christ the head of them. 8:30. and reveals them to them. (Isa. 1:13) he was from all eternity as "one brought up with him". as they are his creatures. "God is love" (1 John 4:8. is more than once said. 61:1. (Gal. of whom he is begotten. as his Son. (Ps. Rom. (Isa. In treating of this divine attribute. he is said to "rejoice in his works". and as man. from whence he has his name. and the Glorifier of him (1 Cor. John 16:14). as he must. and even while he bore his wrath as the sinner's surety. being the very breath of him. are not hated by him. Ps. 1. 33:6. That the Father loves the Son. and proceeding from him. Eph. 145:9) and particularly. 92 . since "he is the brightness of his glory. he loved him as his Servant. or the divine majesty and glory. John 15:26. 1 John 5:7). and possessing the same nature and essence with him (Job 33:4. The Son loves the Father. and obedience. and has shown his love to them in choosing them to happiness. 2:10) and by admitting them into his presence. that it is said. nor can he have anything out of himself that can add to his essential happiness. 10:18. The Father loves the Spirit. and is called the Spirit of the Son. The three divine Persons in the Godhead mutually love each other. and his tender mercies are over all his works. God first and chiefly loves himself. 1a. the law of God was in his heart. his offspring. 1:3. as the Mediator. Matthew 5:45) but he bears a special love to elect men in Christ. (Matthew 3:17. 48:16. and is good to all. he supports them. and shows them unto them. 42:1. 26. 15:26. 2:9) yea. in his state of humiliation.of God. 1b. and takes of the things of Christ. but as they are apostate spirits from him: and so he bears a general love to all men. is. the Son loves the Father and the Spirit. (Matthew 18:10) yea. 2:10-12. and righteousness. as they are the creatures of God. he was the object of his love. he searches into the deep things of God. satisfaction. providence. Rev. 13). and so is both the Comforter of them. he looks upon him with delight. and is the Preserver of all. Plato expressly calls him "Love": and Hesiod speaks of love as the fairest and most beautiful among the immortal gods. Self-love is in all intelligent beings. "very good". and bestows the bounties of his providence in common upon them. Col. and to the neglect of others. when he had made them. rational creatures are the objects of his care. nor is it discommendable. and saw that they were good. and that with a love of complacency and delight. allowing them to stand before him. by the Jews. 1:31) he was well pleased. 36:6. none are obliged to love others more than themselves. So the Shekinah. and on account of them. both men and beasts. (Gen. the express image of his person". And the Spirit loves the Father and the Son. the Father loves the Son and the Spirit. but as themselves (Matthew 22:39). which is called his "great love". with whom he was brought up. preserves them. love. he looked over them. 40:8. and as Mediator he showed his love to him by an obedience to his commandment. and was loved by him before the foundation of the world. all the works of creation. The Son also loves the Spirit. hence they are called "elect angels". by whom they are confirmed in the estate in which they were created. as from the Father. 4:6) and Christ often speaks of him with pleasure and delight. in human nature. and hence he has made himself. (Prov. The principal object of the love of God is himself. John 14:16. when it Is not carried to a criminal excess. that is. Col. and delighted with them. All that God has made is the object of his love. (1 Tim. I shall. and is of the same nature. and the work of his hands. 16:7. the ultimate end of all he does in nature. and is well pleased with his sacrifice. 11:36. in whose bosom he lay from all eternity. Consider the objects of it. 1:6) and his happiness lies in contemplating himself. 16). and possessed of all the same perfections with him. and grace. called hbha "Love". even the devils. John 14:31. 4:11. John 17:24. (Acts 17:28. 14:17. 31. (Ps. (Prov. 5:20) and the Son is sometimes called the well beloved and dear Son of God. And. 16:4. since he proceeds from him. 2:8). nor needs he. (John 3:35. and under all his sufferings. even though that was to suffer death for his people (Ps. complacency and delight he has in himself. his glory. and delight: he loves the holy angels. yea. his nature and perfections. Phil. in that love. John 10:17) and now he is at his right hand. and sheds abroad the love of them both in the hearts of his people. as his own and only begotten Son. and behold his face. and the Spirit loves the Father and the Son. 104:31) he upholds all creatures in their beings. the sum of which is to love the Lord God with all the heart and soul. and the heathens give the same name to God. Heb.

rather to be loathed than loved. in the fulness of time. all being under sin. and drawing them forth into exercise. there is no motive or inducement to it in them. yet this must not be understood of the first love of God and Christ. Rom. and to comfort them. at least. and shedding his blood for the cleansing of their souls. 27. that is the cause of his to them. and sending him into the world. (1 John 4:10. and the blessings of it to them. and who share in the love of Father. Titus 3:3. no loveliness in them to excite it. 2:14. of which mention is made in (Rom. 9:11. (Rom. but of further and larger manifestations of it to them. Eph. I go on to. The love of the Father has appeared in thinking of them. 7:22) in assuming their nature. nor of the first display of it. and the Father is said to love them too. 2. And. to salvation. (John 3:16. and appear in the beauties of holiness: so that all this is the fruit of the love of God. are no better than others. (Eph. which is that comeliness that is put upon them. Rev. 40:6-8. and Spirit. particularly in prayer. (Isa. 1:13. by implanting every grace in them. to work out their salvation. and by shedding abroad the love of God and Christ in their hearts. John 14:21. 2:3) what loveliness or beauty is in saints. as others". 2:2-4) and how can it be thought. in contriving and forming the scheme of their peace and reconciliation in Christ. 12) and in other instances it broke forth towards them. 19) in choosing them in him from the beginning. 5:2. imputed to them. 1 John 3:16. 1:7) in their adoption. Give some instances of the love of God. 5:18. 8:15. in providing. 10. by opening and applying the promises of it. promising. 3a. 14). 26. thoughts of peace. and in being the earnest. 8:17. (Prov. and those that are loved. 93 . 4) in appointing Christ to be the Saviour of them. by him. It may be proper next to consider the properties of the love of God towards chosen men. whereby they are made perfectly comely. Nor can it be any love in them to God. to redeem them. Titus 3:4. (Rom. Nor are good works the cause of this love. and not the cause of it. 17) by giving himself a Sacrifice for them. (Jer. 33:3. 4. all men by nature are corrupt and abominable. and broke in upon them while they were yet in their sins. but not as being the cause of it. according to the will of God. (1 John 3:1) in their regeneration and conversion. to convince them of sin and righteousness. 23. and to the sanctifying grace of the Spirit. pledge. even from everlasting. "by nature. Jude 1:1) in laying up all blessings in him for them. for they had no love in them when Christ died for them. 5) in the pardon of their sins through the blood of Christ. and are. Hosea 2:19) in becoming their Surety for good. 5:8.(Eph. There is no cause of it out of God. and securing and preserving them in him. by witnessing to their spirits their adoption. 4. was before either good or evil were done. is owing to the righteousness of Christ. 5. The love of the Son of God appears in espousing the persons of the elect. Rom. Heb. (Deut. The love of the Spirit. work out a righteousness. 4) and which love is distinguishing and discriminating (Mal 1:1. and is descriptive of the persons who are most certainly and evidently the objects of their love. (Rom. Son. from eternity. 12). Titus 2:14. and blessing them with them so early. 16:27). nor until regenerated by the Spirit of God. (Prov. which was to work out their salvation. by showing the grace of the covenant. 15:30) appears in his coming into the hearts of God's elect. undertaking their cause. in one instance of it. and before they were capable of performing good works. 1:3. Eph. 1:5). (Ps. by assisting them in every duty. particularly to chosen men in Christ. 25. Eph. 8:31. 4:4. 3:9. engaging to do the will of God with that cheerfulness he did. unto them. 2:4) whom he has chosen and blessed with all spiritual blessings in him. Rom. Eph. 6:23). 5) and in the gift of eternal life unto them (Rom. Eph. children of wrath. 1:3. 8. 3. 16. (Eph. in whom his delights were before the world was. (2 Cor. (Gal. 38:17. 8:3. and the remission of their sins (Eph. 2:4. 2. whereby they are all glorious within. 31:3. 9:11. 1 John 4:9. making intercession for them. it is because he first loved them. and when they love him. for this. which will lead more into the nature of it. 19) and though Christ is said to love them that love him. and seal of them to the day of redemption (John 16:7. Heb. those sons of men. as deserving of that as those that are not loved. laying down his life on their account. 2:13) in putting their persons into the hands of Christ. and make reconciliation for them. (2 Thess.

Isa. and therefore must be without any variableness. the love of God purely flows from his good will and pleasure. this lovingkindness of God never departs. In short. 3b. (Hosea 14:4) for God foreknew that they would fall in Adam. 54:10) whatever God takes away. or impediments to this love. and works good in them: and then a love of complacency and delight takes place. well pleasing to God. quicken. he sometimes hides his face from them. it is true indeed. but then the persons of God's elect. and life itself may depart. 89:33) having loved his own which were in the world. who "is gracious to whom he will be gracious". as all the said things may be taken away by him. or would love them. (Ps. and convert them. 1:4) the covenant of grace made with them. that they would be transgressors from the womb. 33:19) it is that pure river that proceeds out of the throne of God. indeed. 1:9. it is the same from the instant in eternity it was. and Christ was set up as the Mediator of it from everlasting: all which are strong proofs of love to them (2 Tim. and yet they were all before conversion. but still he loves them. or shadow of turning. and is dissolved. Titus 1:2. yet this hindered not his taking up thoughts of love towards them. though health. it neither increases nor decreases. 23). is next to that. it does not commence in time. nor the sad effects of it. with others. his choice of them. 31:3) it is the bond of union between God and Christ. heaven itself. he loves them to the end. and then comes on a love of beneficence. The union it is the bond of. by which God wishes or wills good to men. (Isa. 23). which was before the foundation of the world. and the gift of the Spirit to them. to others less. The love of God is eternal. and friends. may be. and invariable. It admits of no distinctions. for still he loves them freely. he loved his people also. that "without faith it is impossible to please God". God changes his dispensations and dealings with them. he sometimes rebukes and chastises them. nor all their backslidings. if not greater gifts of love. and as early. in order to regenerate. before conversion. it is from eternity: this is evident from the love of God to Christ. even faith itself is not. and wealth. since there were as great. The love of God endures for ever. not because they have faith. (Ex. 3c. this never will. 39). in Christ. and with the same love he loved him. at different times. nor separate from it (Rom. at death. 54:7-10) the manifestations of his love are various. and so to the same persons. he will never take away this. but never changes his love. (John 17:23. 8:35. The love of God is immutable. God loves men. 8:22. But this is to make God changeable. not the fall of Adam. that "is the gift of God". Some talk of a love of benevolence. but neither death nor life can separate from this. as the election of them in Christ. which supposes the love of them. (Rev. in which. 7:7. unalterable. and he does good to them. nothing can separate it. (Deut. in the everlasting covenant. may be. 24) and from various acts of love to them in eternity. from darkness to light. There never were any stops. and are. but his love continues the same. to the end of their 94 . "the same today. (Eph. as an emblem of sovereignty. the gift of his Son to die for them when in their sins. nor the actual sins and transgressions of God's people. in a state of nature. and of the Lamb. from bondage to liberty. it is his nature. Conversion makes a change in them. were made before the world began. it is himself. from fellowship with evil men to communion with God: but it makes no change in the love of God. in that sense. and not till then. is not a greater gift than these. grants of grace. and it can never be dissolved. and is a fruit and evidence of it (Eph. 89:29-33. and without it. after called by grace. and do as evil as they could. it is an everlasting love. brings them from the power of Satan to God. and for ever": and. eternal life. 2:8. 3d. 8) in like manner he loves his spiritual and mystical Israel. but they have faith given them. lets. and for no other reason. before faith.that since the best works of men are so impure and imperfect as to be reckoned as filthy rags. but love in his own heart is invariable and unchangeable. as we are: the love of God admits of no degrees. Titus 1:1). it is like himself. such as the gift of God himself. God is love. and like it. to some they are greater. without any change: it is needless to ask whether it is the same before as after conversion. by which it appears to alter and vary. which is between the three divine persons (John 17:21. and promises of glory. and flows from electing love. and the elect. and covenant with them. Prov. because God loves them. Acts 13:48. it is without beginning. (Ps. yesterday. that these should be the cause of God's love to men? no. 38. 22:1) as God loved the people of Israel because he loved them. (Jer. that is. as after. bestowed on the object loved. The union between soul and body. to do those things which are pleasing in his sight.

3. 44. adoption. as in union with his divine person. and with all the heart. he must needs be infinitely so. so far as could be admitted. to the end of time. as the Giver and the gift. truth. and beauty of his human nature. Titus 2:11) gifts for preaching the gospel. he is "Grace" itself. Ps 27:7. l. "I will be gracious to whom I will 95 . 22:4). And if he is so glorious and graceful. Gal. 33:14. Rev. & Lex. and is exercised according to his sovereign will and pleasure. as in himself. to them that believe. it is no other than love unmerited and undeserved. is exceeding precious. aeque ac nosmetipsos amemus. who. fol. wisdom. and others. when they behold his glory. as Mediator.lives. David. The grace of God may be considered as displayed in acts of goodness towards his creatures. the express image of his person. 15. and they were capable of. 34:6) and to see the lovely face of God. ut me ille plus quam se amet". it is his nature and essence. (Ex. 3:7. (2 Cor. The grace of God arises from the goodness of his nature. 5:4. 1 John 3:2. 1:9) in each of the graces of the Spirit in regeneration. hope. and the grace of God. Cabal. the Fountain and the streams. and strength. the fulness of grace in him. is the happiness of angels. 8) the blessings of grace. Eph. which they are altogether unworthy of. 6:1. l. and to all eternity (John 13:1). he is said to be "glorious in holiness" (Ex. 2:9) but then these are to be distinguished from grace in God. A Body of Doctrinal Divinity Book 1—Chapter 13 Of The Grace Of God This attribute may be considered. v. love. There are many things called grace. power. a God gracious before him. the purity. what must he be when all put together. so far as creatures are capable of. ENDNOTES: [1] Shirhashirim Rabba. as the gospel. especially men. And this appears from the loveliness of Christ. viewed in one perfection of his. (Rom. and are the effects of it. &c. ut eos qui nobis carissimi esse debeant. the image of the Father. as justification. justice. 120. [2] Theogonia. desired to see the "face" of God. it is himself. &c. Gal. [3] "Praeclarum illud est et si quaeris rectum quoque et verum. &c. 15. all perfections in him. 43. when he caused his goodness to pass. his goodness. and as displayed in acts towards his creatures. exercising and communicating itself to them in a free and generous manner.? and therefore is to be loved above all. 33:19. and proclaimed his name. and not from anything in the creature. and who has all virtues. is so graceful and amiable. and hence it is that good men. Cicero. soul. because they flow from his grace. as Moses. (Ex. ne optaedum quidem est in amicitia. under these several considerations. and altogether lovely. Now if Christ. whose image he is. Quaest. both as it is in God himself. 2 Tim. the Cause and the effect. 8. as the only begotten of the Father. and would have been for ever the same if he never had displayed his grace towards any of his creatures. and is no other than his free favour and good will to men. 15:11). 13:12. hence so often called "gracious" in Scripture: it is a character expressive of the amiableness and loveliness of his nature: and thus he was before he had. p. 9:8. (2 Cor. most amiable and lovely. 1 Cor. 105:4) and what a lovely sight had Moses of him in the clift of the rock. at vero plus fieri nulio facto potest. perfection. in which he was in high favour with God and men. as faith. (Ps 84:11. Tusc. and he is viewed in them all. 12:6. will be the happiness of saints to all eternity (Matthew 18:10. all excellencies.

15:10) whether as a man. called the riches of God's goodness. or will be in the world. may be called grace: to have a being. (Rom. and this is the final cause. and his dominion over the creatures. as the end. that itself is but one in God. and pleasure of God. the objects of it. that is likewise a means fixed in the decree. and is denied to be of works. distinguished into "common" or "general". and so may be called grace. and the effects of it upon them and in them. With respect to creatures. and unless guarded against. more or less. or ultimate end of all. by some. "By the grace of God I am what I am". by some. 1:4-7. and is therefore called the election of grace. but rightly applied and understood. (Rom. and the continuance and preservation of life. Eph. and the preservation of it. before any works were done. distinguished into "imputed" and "inherent" grace: "imputed" grace is the holiness. and spring. 2:13. (Rom. and is as absolute. redeemed. all is "to the glory of his grace". as of natural and "supernatural" grace. and is only in men. regenerated. 1:6) and is what appears. (Rom. to his unmerited grace 96 . the temporal blessings of life. Election is also irrespective of faith. and so may bear the name of grace. indeed. such as electing. in which he was created. is that which is peculiar to some persons only. It is "independent" of all merit and worth in creatures. as to the sense and perception of it. (Eph. by the Spirit of God. 9) it is quite entirely "free". But these distinctions. as food and raiment. or grace. therefore. being altogether owing to the free favour and undeserved goodness of God. grace is. shines forth. 1:4). in a state of innocence. but that they might be holy (Eph. 1:9. both internal and external. from whence they all flow. Rom. 8:37) and it is only exhibited and displayed through Christ. unless it is altogether free. and of all works done by them. and life. and which will easily be allowed to be supernatural. 2:4) which all partake of. obedience. as his nature is. for "God is the Saviour of all men" (1 Tim. 9:29). 6). redeeming. the bounties of providence. until men become the workmanship of God in regeneration. knowledge and understanding. "Supernatural" grace includes all the blessings of grace bestowed upon any of the sons of fallen Adam. only concern the effects of the grace of God. And though there are various gifts and blessings. adopted. this act of the grace of God. 3:24. Titus 1:1). is a means fixed in the decree of election. pardoned. as it was by the apostle. upon. firm. and most certainly follows upon it. justifying. was all owing to the unmerited kindness and goodness of God. Again. some distinctions are made concerning it. "Special" or "particular" grace. I cannot see. Acts 13:17. through Christ. and sanctified (Eph. is what all men have. passed in his eternal mind. (1 Cor. It remains. though only natural blessings.be gracious" (Ex. if it may be so called. "Common" or "general" grace. 2:8. The grace of God appears in the election of men to everlasting life. 8) as will be evident by an enumeration of them. and is sure. salvation. 33:19). and is the efficient cause. are gifts and favours. which every man that comes into the world is enlightened with. as the light of nature and reason. pardoning. it is but one in God: there is but one Fountain. his holiness and righteousness. in regeneration. it wholly and only "resides" in God. What Adam enjoyed. and effects of it. and should be acknowledged. and is therefore called the faith of God's elect (2 Thess. and all the graces of the Spirit wrought in them. 11:5. 2 Tim. (Eph. and without any consideration of them. grace is not grace. and certain. the world had been as Sodom and Gomorrah (Rom. Natural grace seems to sound oddly. and is illustrious in every part and branch of their salvation. or as a minister. 2:10) nor were men chosen in Christ because they were holy. had it not been for this. Titus 3:5. may tend to confound nature and grace together. and yet it was all natural: so many things which his posterity in their fallen state enjoy. 2:13) and all the true holiness that is. and the mercies of life. above the rest of creatures. (2 Thess. unconditional. good will. which men are altogether unworthy of. and then they are the fruits and effects of divine preordination. (Rom. with others. and therefore they are said to be "saved by grace". 6) and. And sanctification. (Eph. has been. of all good things enjoyed by men. the communion he had with God. and "special" or "particular". though some are of this opinion. But that Adam had any such. 11:6. 8:30) and this special grace is. and is always opposed to them in scripture. and sanctifying grace. in and through whom men are elected. (Rom. 1. and righteousness of Christ imputed to justification: "inherent" grace is what is wrought in the heart. flows from electing grace. may be admitted. for my own part. as the image of God. as Austin said long ago. 9:11) nor can any works truly good be done. justified. that God does towards. adopting. good or evil. and immutable. in a state of integrity. that election must be ascribed to the free favour. or in his elect. source. As an attribute. 4:10). or as a Christian. 5:5. 2:5.

5:15-17. and provided him to be the sacrifice. an only begotten Son. with great propriety. namely. "the covenant of grace". and yet the justifier of him that believes in Jesus". 4. and not angels. and is made to establish and secure the glory of it (Ps 89:2. by infinite wisdom. and which made them sure by an oath to the heirs of them. and these no better in themselves than others. as others". and bring in everlasting righteousness. made before the world began. is said to be of grace. faith. Justification is always denied to be of works. his Son and Heir. (1 John 4:10) and it was by the grace of God he tasted death for men. 7. and which "gave" him to be the covenant of the people. God. the glory of his grace (Eph. 2:8). 8:3. In short. Eph. to find out a proper person to be the redeemer and saviour. The grace of God is very manifest in the adoption of the chosen ones. The grace of God shines very illustrious in redemption by Jesus Christ. and to impute it. 3:24). Free grace. is represented as a gift. and every other grace (Gal. that so it might clearly appear to be of grace. (Ps 40:6. but to Christ. 3. 1:9) and it was free grace that filled it with exceeding great and precious promises. without works. that they might receive this blessing of grace. the cause of which is. and to show forth which is the design of it (Rom. and the good of his covenant people. (Luke 2:14) and his mission to his unmerited love. enemies in their minds by wicked works. whether Old or New Testament saints. being in themselves ungodly. It was free grace that moved God to make one. unto them. the heirs of salvation. in the strongest terms. Rom. the Surety free grace provided. and into which relation they were taken before time. though the phrase is not in so many words to be met with in scripture. and the end of it. 23. ungodly men. as the persons who are justified by it. The grace of God is very conspicuous in the justification of men before God. (2 Cor. Rom. being "by nature children of wrath. and it was free grace in God the Father to accept of this righteousness. and the righteousness by which men are justified. to wait upon the children. and "become the end of the law for righteousness". 26) free grace appears in appointing Christ to work out. and that moved Christ to engage with his Father in it. free grace set infinite wisdom to work. 9:18. the adopted are altogether unworthy of such a favour. to which he was not otherwise obliged: it was free grace that called. (Heb. and which they do by faith. he had a Son. the grace of God. the chief of sinners. 6). Isa. and Christ was sent to open the way. whereby "God is just. (Job 33:24) his incarnation was owing to God's good will to men. which relation is the ground of their having the Spirit. is commonly called by us. 42:6) it was free grace that stored it with all spiritual blessings. (Rom. and in sending him in the likeness of sinful flesh to do it. in the everlasting covenant. and these men. (2 Tim. and minister unto them: and not all the race of men. and who become heirs of them. 16). this. the gift of God. the true spring and cause of it. 2:9) and this for sinners. 97 . 5. and "freely" by his grace. and in appointing faith to be the recipient of it. 9:24. Rom. the adopter. which otherwise never could have been. found out the way whereby sinful men might be just with God. 3:25. more clearly shows it. promises of grace and glory. only manifests them to be the sons of God. 4) and it was free grace moved Christ to come to do this will of God. 3). all that are redeemed and saved. 5:19. (Dan. are saved by the grace of God and Christ (Acts 15:11). by which it appears to be ordered in all things for the glory of God. the dear Son of his love. and these are grants of grace. for faith does not make them. but through the undeserved favour of God towards them. in the room and stead of sinners. 4:4-6). and that through the redemption that is in Christ (Titus 3:7. 4:5. and acceptance with him. a gift by grace. not through any merit of theirs. a free gift. stood not in any need of sons. made in it to them in Christ. and it found out Christ to be the ransom. which. 2. who are only servants in the family. 28. by not imputing their trespasses to them. who always pleased him. to be by "his grace". 6. Eph. as their justifying righteousness. 3:20. only some. the good pleasure of the will of God.and goodness. as faith that receives it also is (Rom. a beloved Son. 1:5. it is founded in the unmerited grace and mercy of God. 1:4-6). The grace of God is displayed in the covenant he has made with his elect in Christ. and therefore their adoption cannot be ascribed to anything else but the free and distinguishing grace of God.

Every grace implanted in regeneration. ENDNOTES: [1] "Non enim Dei gratia. will be attended with shouts and acclamations. 7. and guides. and though it cost him dear. The grace of God is abundantly evident in regeneration. of his free grace. anticipating. And also what some call "sufficient grace". bore witness to by all the prophets. of his good pleasure (Phil. and "co-operating". historical faith. namely. flows from the free favour and good will of God. Repentance is a grant of God's grace. but issues in everlasting salvation. 1:15. humility. and all is owing to unmerited goodness. Thess. and draws them to him. that it is "efficacious". and freeness of the grace of God. for Christ's sake. as grace "preparing. Lastly. 338. 2 Tim. (Ex. yet. 1:7) the promise of it in the covenant is free. as a rational knowledge of the gospel. without money and without price. (Acts 5:31. and even gifts for the public ministry. and according to it. 13:38) the blood of Christ was shed freely for it. Aug. (Eph. (Hosea 14:4. "Preparing" grace must be understood not of preparations. And "subsequent" grace is that by which the work of grace is carried on. a free grace gift. teaches and instructs them in the knowledge of themselves. l. both to will and to do. fulness. may be allowed. (James 1:18) and he calls them by his grace. There are other distinctions of grace. Ezek. as "restraining grace". where it becomes the ingrafted word (Prov. as the means of grace often are. in a state of nature. before conversion. not given to all men. and unconditional. and be castaways. if rightly explained and understood. 1:13) and to great backsliders. "the glory of his grace" (Eph. are without. 2:16). patience. it is all of free grace to sinners. at least what men call so. is the same. good ground. and of Christ. The introduction of all the Lord's people into the enjoyment of it. through Christ. 2:13) and it is vouchsafed to the worst and chief of sinners. which persons may have. which fall short of true sanctifying grace. 98 . and God. what men. 34:6. Matthew 13:23). 45) "Operating" grace is that by which God works in men. to the grace of God. and which God. Hope is a good hope through grace. a distinguishing gift. and makes it. absolute. 2:8 2. God regenerates men by his grace. and previous dispositions in men. 42. it never fails of its effects: and it is always "persevering" grace. 16:1. 6:23). grace. only to whom the Lord pleases (Eph. the most proper epithet of the grace of God. and "subsequent". gives (2 Thess. is. Luke 7:41. and by which they run. contra Pelag. fit to receive the seed of the word cast into it. (John 6:44. whereby some of God's people. are kept from the commission of gross sins others fall into. calling. a free grace gift through him (Rom. guilty of sins of omission and commission. being drawn (Song 1:4). and sanctification. (Heb.6. insufficient. and so the great and ultimate end of God in their salvation. (Gal. for that can never be sufficient which is ineffectual. Faith is a gift. and enlightens their minds. crying "grace. a gift of Christ. and is never lost or comes to nothing. Eternal life is the free gift of God. (1 Tim. gratia erit ullo modo. Though there seems to be no great need of these distinctions. being acted or wrought upon. Acts 10:43. rather it should be called. by his grace. 8. nisi gratuita fuerit omnimodo". 1:6). though wrongly. ungrateful persons. Col. 1:6). calling. but what is of God himself. as displayed in regeneration. and of his own good will and pleasure. Christ is exalted as a prince to "give" it. and of them. 2. directs. unto it!" (Zech. Pardon of sin is according to the riches. 4:7) and which will be the employment of saints to all eternity. Isa. "Anticipating" grace is that in which God goes beforehand with men. and yet be unknown by Christ. 1:9) and which always becomes effectual. which are not very material. de Peccat. 3:2). 11:18. 43:2225). will be answered. There are some things which bear the name of grace. frankly forgives all trespasses. 36:26). and a blessing of the covenant (Acts 5:31. 8:12) the proclamation of it in the gospel. "Co-operating" grace is that by which men act. who prepares the heart. and external "gifts" of grace. love. The same may be said of every other grace. p. and some others. 2:13). and conversion. and performed until the day of Christ (Phil. operating". Original. &c.

unmerited. are. 18) just as omnipotence is essential to God. and. Love pitched itself originally on objects. whereas they are not. "Be ye merciful as your Father is merciful" (Luke 6:36). yea. Mercy being essential to God. and not he: the 99 . attended with grief and sorrow. (Ex. Ps. that are in misery. which become the more vehement. which. and so fallen: in order of operation. who does whatsoever he pleases. and in their being indulged with the presence of God. merciful and yet just: and not caring to allow justice to be essential to God. which they think they must grant. and exercised on every object in misery: for then all would share in it. This is one of the perfections which are in some measure imitable by creatures. or one made so by the misery of another. The Latin word "Misericordia" signifies. in the pure mass of creatureship. Neh. bore to the object. which would establish the doctrine of Christ's satisfaction. 116:5) indeed it is not to be considered as a passion. 9:15. the Cause of himself. Hence the stoic philosophers denied mercy to belong to good men. all which is abundant grace. nothing out of himself can be the cause of it. Mercy is natural and essential to God. it is not naturally and necessarily bore towards. &c. even all wicked men and devils. so is he in like manner merciful. the nearer the relation is. 1b. which will lead more clearly into its nature. for though all mercy is grace. undeserved. originally. mercy supposes its objects miserable. yet love seems to work by mercy. especially as applied to God. the objects being viewed as dead in sin. from the love of God in its objects. by whose grace they are confirmed in the state in which they were created. for then there would be a cause prior to him. because it is free. are regarded under different considerations. as one observes. since he is free from all passion and perturbation of mind. but is directed and guided by the will of God. 9:17. it does not. yet all grace is not mercy: much grace and favour are shown to the elect angels. with anguish and anxiety of mind for the party in misery. or speaking after the manner of men. for the great love". 1. (Eph. indeed. but not mercy. God. and that would be god. as unfallen. The things to be considered respecting this attribute. 2:4. 1a. and in themselves. if mercy is. with whom it is no other than a propensity of his will to help persons in distress. and so not to God. but it is guided in the exercise of it by the love of God. but not a miserable heart. unless by an anthropopathy. and mercy from it. having another's misery at heart. for though they are together in God. and yet merciful. love stirs up mercy to quicken them with Christ. in such sense. and this is as essential to him as is his goodness. whether in a temporal or spiritual way. to eternal happiness.A Body of Doctrinal Divinity Book 1—Chapter 14 Of The Mercy Of God The Mercy of God differs. and communion with him. both from the love and grace of God. Mercy also differs from grace. and for it. and the knowledge of it. 5). who "hath mercy on whom he will have mercy". in constituting Christ the head of them. since they never were miserable. in some respects. (Rom. and underivatively good. But though mercy is natural and essential to God. though the same. in the choice of them in Christ. though it continues with them in their fallen state. or affection in God. it is his nature and essence: hence he is often described as "merciful". and make that necessary which they do not choose to embrace. 34:6. The Socinians deny that mercy is essential to God. in the preservation of them from the apostasy others of their species fell into. whereas it is certain they do not. they always beholding his face in heaven. and so not objects of mercy. not even in men. the one as early as the other. a man may be just. and is governed and influenced by his sovereign will. and through all the imperfections of this life. as it is in men. and order of operation: in its objects. but is not necessarily put forth to do everything it could. or his nature and essence. of which it is a branch: and therefore as God is essentially. and the stronger the love and affection is. independently. "who is rich in mercy. The properties of it. supposing that mercy and justice are opposite.

and likewise his mercy. see (Rom. and hides his face from them. and spiritual ones always remain. as he loves whom he pleases. not the misery of the creature. 103:17) it is from everlasting. and also with respect to punishment for it. in his divine person. since it is his nature. and this appears both by bestowing an infinite good on men. Eph. indeed. is finite. and are daily continued. it is kept with Christ. (Ps. of which each equally partakes. Isa. or his obedience. as the Virgin Mary expresses it. 51:4) and therefore is not only infinite with respect to number. 3:12. "from generation to generation". 3:9. wisdom. Father. it is so in its nature. Son. it must be as eternal as he himself is. 89:1-3) and since mercy is from everlasting. and objects of mercy: and. Now mercy has provided for the forgiveness of sin. since all are miserable. notwithstanding their backslidings. obeyed. infinite. 8:12). or more vile and sinful. (Mal. 3:6) it is invariably the same in every state and condition into which they come. justice. as an act of the creature. for they are the fruits and effects of it. from his special love to his people. (Ps. in which the scheme of reconciliation to God was formed. and wrought out salvation for us. 25:6) the council and covenant of peace were in eternity. without end. (Luke 1:78) that is. so "he has mercy on whom he will have mercy" (Ex. is a superstructure of mercy. and oftentimes less deserving. (Ps. (Job 22:5) but with respect to its object. it is carried on "ad infinitum". became incarnate. and "is gracious to whom he will be gracious". "the sure mercies of David". grace. and. besides. are new every morning. 27:11) nor are the merits of the creature. things in time: and the mercy of God is to everlasting. and therefore spoken of as everlasting and eternal. and having no passive power to work upon. 1 Tim. who is not to be moved and wrought upon as creatures are. which is to be proved by the instances of it.misery of a creature is not the cause of mercy in God. by the fall of Adam. that the dayspring from on high hath visited us". and death. it is owing to mercy. 28. and flow from it. and as such given. (Ps. for as there is one common undivided essence. which supposed them enemies. 1e. or works of righteousness. It is common to all the three divine persons. was this the case. nor the obedience and sufferings of Christ. Nor are even the merits of Christ. and Spirit. 54:6-10. and for him. these are opposed to each other in the business of salvation. yet. sufferings. 90:2. sin: sin. 89: 30-33. (1 Peter 1:3) and to our Lord 100 . called. and for the deliverance of men from the punishment of it. without any variation or change (Luke 1:50). and so this of mercy: mercy is ascribed to the God and Father of Christ. The mercy of God arises from the goodness of his nature.14). the mercy of God never departs from his people. 1:13). and mercy of God. the cause of mercy in God. 2:3. and though he chides them for them. or from everlasting. the infinite Being. 1c. who is meant by "the dayspring from on high". but objectively. The mercy of God is eternal. 1d. 1 Cor. the Mediator of the covenant. (Ps. and from being liable to it (Heb. see (Ps. and died. and in its effects. and goodness. as man. 33:19). and who though. see (Isa. the cause of mercy. or answered for in a short time. it is "through the tender mercy of our God. more deserving than those to whom it is not. 89:24. and this cannot be endured at once. into whose hands are put all the promises and blessings of mercy. in our room and stead. His "understanding is infinite". so are each of his attributes. all must partake of mercy. as his nature is infinite. nor works of righteousness done after conversion. is finite. (Titus 3:5) nor are those to whom mercy is shown. which "have been ever of old". not anything in time can be the cause of it. suffered. which was from everlasting. which is Christ. called his "tender mercies". and his love also. the same divine perfections and attributes belong to them. who is the gift of God. yet still he has mercy on them (Ps. and the method of it settled. 55:3) even temporal blessings. and so considered them as fallen creatures. and from his sovereign will and pleasure. holiness. the eternity of mercy is expressed in the same language as the eternity of God himself. which they do not. in its fruits and effects. 6:11. Jer. who. it is. infinite. (Isa. Isa. therefore. The mercy of God is infinite. the covenant of grace. that Christ. Hence. the demerit of it is eternal death. and owing to the love. as his love is. as it is committed against God. which flow from the mercy of God. and therefore the objects of it are not consumed. as he himself is. being a most simple act. 1f. The mercy of God is immutable. 9:6) and by his delivering them from an infinite evil. 147:5) and so his knowledge. indeed.

food and raiment. they are favoured with. partake of the providential goodness and mercy of God. 4) and so particularly regeneration. it is represented. and through whom it. are the causes of his mercy to them. These are described sometimes by them "that call upon" the Lord. he is kind to the unthankful and unholy. All men. 107:1. Neh. (1 Peter 1:2. 1 Peter 1:3.Jesus Christ. and is the cause of them. is conveyed to the sons of men: they are right who cast themselves not on the absolute mercy of God out of Christ. and as God punishes none more but less than their sins require. In a word. nor actually enjoyed the blessings of it. which flow from it. then they who "had not obtained mercy". to whose mercy we are to look for it. and keep his commandments. in some sense. who are called "vessels of mercy". Matthew 5:45). and especially of them that believe. as great. The objects of mercy may be next observed: and that this may appear in a plain and clear light. none are the objects of that but elect men. Not that calling upon God. Job 38:41). they appear to be the objects of mercy. yet he has given them a kind of reprieve. 147:9. the mute animals. we read of a "multitude" of tender mercies. and which are bestowed on them according as they are chosen in Christ. as their sins have deserved. which is according to the abundant mercy of God. not only as Man and Mediator. 9:23) because they are filled with it. 86:5). "the Lord is good to all. hence says the Psalmist. 4:10) and gives them the necessaries of life. even with all spiritual blessings. and to whom the effects of it have been applied. 35). share in it. As to the special mercy of God. (Rom. "a God gracious and merciful". and therefore are under obligation to say. 103:11. being effectually called by the grace of God. are blessed both with knowledge of interest in it. (Ex. being the elect of God. He preserves and supports all men in their beings. 13. as well as they show that the mercy of God is special and distinguishing. (Ps. "now have obtained mercy". it will be proper to remark. even hereafter. and very abundant. 51:1. as the Publican did (Luke 18:13). "and makes intercession for them with groanings which cannot be uttered" (Rom. 6) and that a provision of food is made for their sustenance. and all things richly to enjoy. and who may expect a continuance of it. share in the special mercy and goodness of God. share in the mercy of God. so as to save them. and ample. and throne of grace. 1g. are many and various. for though God has not spared them. and the fear of him. and larger discoveries and displays thereof to be made unto them. he is the channel through which it flows. 3. (Joel 1:18-20. as displayed in him. that the mercy of God is general and special: with respect to the general mercy of God. but is enjoyed by all that love and fear the Lord in every nation (Acts 10:34. all creatures are the objects of it. 20:6. (1 Tim. Ps. 2. and reserved them to the judgment of the great day. 104:27. to whom he shows his mercy". as they are redeemed by Christ. is full of thy mercy!" (Ps. with wonder and thankfulness. (Jude 1:21) and to the blessed Spirit. and his tender mercies are over all his works". 2:4. even the devils themselves partake of mercy. since that is prior to all these. as will appear more fully by considering the objects and instances of it (Ps. 9:4) and by them that fear him. and not condemn them. Mercy is displayed only in and through Christ. 17). and observance of his commands. both for convenience and pleasure: yea. who helps the infirmities of the saints. and makes the sun to rise on the evil and on the good. good and bad. Ps. "The earth. (Ps. and towards whom his mercy always is (Ps. and so is the Saviour of all. 103:11. 1:3. and yet that it is not limited to any family or nation. this may be reasonably supposed to be the case of devils. to whom he is plenteous in mercy. (Eph. 86:5) by "them that love him. 119:64) even the brute creation. and who sometimes are in great distress. The instances of mercy. large. "the Lord is good. it is only in him God proclaims his name. (Ps. and God is said to be "rich" and "plenteous" in it. in its effects. Dan. love to him. but upon his mercy. Eph. and manifestly. and sends rain on the just and on the unjust (Luke 6:35. but these describe the persons who openly. to the objects of it. his mercy endures for ever". 101 . it is owing to mercy that they are preserved in their beings. O Lord. did not know their interest in it. so that they are not yet in full torments. 8:26). 2) and especially. 36:5. (Ps. and when they cry to God he gives them their food. God out of Christ is a consuming fire. 3) and these. at which men obtain mercy and find grace. and with the open possession of the blessings of it (1 Peter 2:10). but as the true God and eternal life. he is the mercy seat. 145:9) there is not a creature in all the earth but partakes of it. 1:5. 28.

to quicken a sinner dead in trespasses and sins. and came before him with the blessings of goodness: the provisions of Christ. to which that is ascribed in (1 Peter 1:3) and it is wonderful and special mercy. redemption by Christ. mercy called Christ to undertake the work of redemption. Dan. 103:8. 2:13) "electio praesupponit dilectionem". 78). 1 Tim. it is built upon mercy. and faith in him. and perform it. even in the day of judgment. but to obtain salvation by Christ. are so many displays of mercy. and will save". which supposes them fallen creatures. saying. 3b. to be the propitiation for the remission of sins. flow from the mercy of God. and not mercy. and through which they obtain it (Ps. 3f. and of regeneration and sanctification by his Spirit. and to reveal Christ to them. those chosen ones may be called vessels of mercy. and encourages sensible sinners to ask. and is full of it.3a. These are some of the great and good things which God does for his people in the effectual calling. Jude 1:21). 3e. and as sinners. being viewed as fallen in Adam. men were considered as unfallen. and save from everlasting fire. and sanctification of the Spirit. and in which they must otherwise die. has redeemed his people (Isa. in time. and has sent him. 85:10) yea. "not by works of righteousness. (2 Tim. having compassion on them. in the pure mass out of which God designed to make them for himself: but with respect to the means. (Ps. it is stored with it. for the decree of election may be distinguished into the decree of the end and the decree of the means: with respect to the end. It appears in election: it is. and it is most illustriously glorified in it. but then. as a Redeemer and Saviour in it. to visit them. 9:9. in his love and pity. of forgiveness of sins through his blood. mercy sent him. (Deut. and not mercy. the Redeemer. and engaged him in it. with propriety. 3c. Redemption itself is a signal instance of the mercy of God. to bring men out of a pit. and built up with it. to which it is frequently ascribed (Ps. which they deserve. and laid their help upon him. but according to his mercy". in the fulness of time. in order to obtain it. Christ himself. he has resolved within himself. 3d. of being for ever happy. whether election is an act of love or of mercy: I am inclined to be of the opinion of those who take it to be an act of love. He has set forth Christ. and so. 7:7. and give them a good hope. no relief and comfort. 63:9). when they shall go into life eternal. and so objects of mercy. to shed his blood for it. the glory of God. a controversy among divines. Mercy resolved upon the redemption and salvation of the elect. yet God has in it decreed to show mercy. he saves. The covenant of grace is a display of the mercy of God. as the effect of his mercy. the hope of glory. Luke 18:13. mercy delivered them up into the hands of justice and death. God has promised it in covenant. Mercy called Christ to engage in it. 1:13). to deliver from the bondage of Satan those. in his purposes. to enlighten such that sit in darkness. (Rom. and in the shadow of death. then they shall find and obtain mercy in that day. and therefore are now directed to look unto the mercy of Christ for it. (Titus 3:5) and when he shall put his people into the full possession of salvation. because he loved them. though the decree of election flows from love. indeed. 1:18. that are led captive by him at his will. and set him up as the Mediator of it. Complete salvation. 8) so spiritual Israel are first beloved. Luke 1:77. and in them. and then chosen. through grace. which is the foundation of hope of it. as before observed. 51:1. and of reconciliation and atonement by his sacrifice. mercy provided a Redeemer and Saviour of them. The mercy of God is displayed in regeneration. "I will be merciful to their unrighteousness" (Heb. The forgiveness of sin is another instance of the mercy of God. and eternal life itself. to snatch them as brands out of the burning. 3:25) and it is the mercy of God. "I will have mercy. as God chose literal Israel. 8:12). (2 Thess. here they were considered as fallen creatures. ENDNOTES: 102 . "mercy and truth have met together". and therefore in this decree he has appointed them not unto wrath. wherein there was no water.

(Neh. grief. (Rom. 14:18. 32. and longsuffering to the world for 103 . or longsuffering in himself. in which he may in some measure be imitated (see Eph. p. Theolog. that the mercy of God is from everlasting to everlasting. and that is grateful to him. 15) the allusion is to the nose. that wherever God is said to be longsuffering. c. passion. but because he is patient. but come to repentance. which is free from all passion and perturbation. or as of great mercy and kindness. and towards his creatures. 2. 1. distressing. it is said to belong to the predicament of "Chesed". (1 Peter 1:2) for to the same persons are both epistles written. accident. and will be. [4] Socinus de Servatore. the whole election of grace. (Rom. but by the Lord. and of the same company and society. for the encouragement of faith and hope in him. Orat. he is represented as gracious and merciful. and pain. and the elect according to the foreknowledge of God. as to the exercise of it. and by this attribute. arises from his mercy. as it is long or contracted. or affection in God. p. in Vita ejus. and is as essential to him as that. answer. The Hebrew word Mypa Kra which literally signifies "long of both nostrils". 23. "the God of patience". when they are fitted for it. Maccov. c. Quaest. is only for a time. the seat of anger. as by them and with them. for this is one of the attributes of God.[1] Vid. and is a pattern of patience to them. qu. it is an extension and prolongation of mercy for a season. 86:15) and therefore the consideration of it very properly follows that of mercy. 4. 4. 5. it springs from his goodness. from all suffering. as in the places referred to. either in the damnation and destruction of the wicked. c. 2:4) it is no other than a moderation of his anger. and is joined with it. 13. and makroyumia. which will be distinctly considered. and sometimes "slow to anger". for mercy is always in it and with it. it was his will that none of them should perish. 34:6. 16. God is sometimes called. [3] Zanchius de Natura Dei. 1. p. (Rom. 1:11) but it is the very nature and essence of God. until some certain end is answered. 1. 7. 103:8) and to which the Greek words makroyumew. 9:17. loc. This is not to be considered as a quality. par. 4:1. and until everyone of these are called and brought to repentance. till each take place. Ps. and in which it issues. and by one another. by the Cabalistic Jews. 1. Laert. (2 Peter 3:8) not only beloved of the apostle. and therefore being the beloved and chosen of God. (Col. The longsuffering of God. longsuffering towards them. The longsuffering of God is exercised towards his chosen people. 8. pro Muraena. or mercy. (Ex. l. (Rom. according to his sovereign will. l. and in this it differs from it. 4. c. and so. is sometimes rendered "longsuffering". Seneca de Clementia. a deferring the effects of it. 9:22) or in the salvation of God's elect. [2] Zeno apud Cicero. c. Ps. Catechism. a restraint of that. 15:5) not only because he is the author and object of the grace of patience. 512. 6. 2 Peter 3:9. or is one way in which mercy shows itself. A Body of Doctrinal Divinity Book 1—Chapter 15 Of The Longsuffering Of God. which restrains or shows it. is a display of it. they are the "us" towards whom he is said to be "longsuffering". 372. as they express themselves. Praelectiones. at least for a while. l. (2 Peter 3:9) even who are called beloved. (2 Peter 3:15) for it is exercised towards both. who bear with patience things grievous. as in creatures. l. 20. and torturing to them. 3:12). but the longsuffering of God. even all of the same character. and it may be observed.2 Col. he is pleased to describe and make known himself. Racov. Num. 2:4. the same with his forbearance and patience. God is. in the New Testament.

though they had no true value. as it was towards him. in every age and period of time. the Lord bears with them. as they deserve. (Dan. (Rom. bore with them. (Gen. and before the actual redemption of them was obtained. he forbore to inflict the punishment on them their sins deserved. the Lord waits. and sometimes from very imminent dangers. to the fulness of time when Christ should come to redeem all his people. and waits patiently all that while. he has not stirred up all his wrath. 3:25). they were carried to heaven. and. his eye was upon him. and expected satisfaction from him: he accepted of the sacrifices of slain beasts. and we as they. upon his credit. suffers much and long. nor real efficacy in them. 9:15). Gal. and did. Heb. he does not cut them off in their sins. as it shows the trust and confidence God put in his Son. and in his covenant. forbears. forbearance. and demand of them satisfaction for it. that in me first Jesus Christ might show forth all longsuffering. 1:9) and with some he bears and waits a long time. even as we are. There was much grace in his heart. as it were. before the account is given of his calling. and bring in everlasting righteousness". 3:15) but it was four thousand years from thence to the time fixed in Daniel's prophecy. 30:18). and were to continue. to be gracious to them (Isa. which also has appeared. their Surety. 3. and execute it on them. and show much longsuffering to the people of the Jews. when "all Israel shall be saved". "When will it once be?" (Jer. The apostle Paul is a remarkable instance of God's longsuffering. In and towards everyone of his people in their state of unregeneracy. 4:4. Christ became the Surety for them in eternity. speaking after the manner of men. he did not stir up his wrath. and bestowed the blessings of his grace on them: they were justified by him on the foundation of Christ's righteousness to be wrought out. This is abundantly displayed in conversion. to be called. that as Christ bore much. 11:26) God's longsuffering towards them is very great and very remarkable. and does appear. so as to cut them off from being a 104 . and. "For this cause I obtained mercy. when there is an abounding and a superabounding of it. dilatoriness. But then the calling and conversion of them is according to purpose. 1b. while in a state of nature. they were saved by the grace of the Lord Jesus. until that should be offered up. to obtain the redemption of transgressions that were under the first Testament. place it to their account. in a longing manner. or of whatsoever nation. for a pattern to them which should hereafter believe on him to life everlasting". 1:16) meaning the people of the Jews. or under whatsoever dispensation they be. through all. but placed it to his Son's account. which has been eminently displayed with respect to the people of God. as vicarious ones in their stead. or slackness in God. 13:27). so for this. as the thief on the cross. to make reconciliation for iniquity. and till that time comes. to be gracious to him. 1c. which was exercised towards him throughout all his blasphemy of Christ. but saves them. and hence such notice is taken of him in that state. his persecution of his people. but to the longsuffering of God. and particularly. in the latter day: his sense seems to be this. so he would bear with. "to finish transgression. at the last day and hour of his life. and he waits. is not owing to any negligence. he waited. (2 Tim. he himself says. for the execution of it. he did not impute sin to them. The case stood thus. 1a. 9:1) yea. to make an end of sin. and which should issue in their salvation. in respect to his people under this dispensation. of which that towards him was a pattern. 9:24. and their sins pardoned. and as there is a time for every purpose. before satisfaction for their sins was given to justice. through his atoning sacrifice to be offered up. and his heart was towards him. concerning the promise of it. and the injuries he did unto them. laid up for them. and make satisfaction for their sins: this was notified immediately after the fall of Adam. but reserved it for his Son. only were typical of Christ's sacrifice. and exercised great longsuffering towards him.their sakes. and glorified. All which. in his Son. wherefore Christ's not coming to judgment sooner than he will. 8:1. and at last showed him mercy. so his forbearance and longsuffering towards Old Testament saints. pay their debts. charge it on them. who are called at the ninth and eleventh hours. and longsuffering with God. In the saints of the Old Testament dispensation. as it had in his. before the payment of their debts were made by their Surety. Now all this time was a time of patience. though they are under the marks of his displeasure. to atone for sin. engaged to assume their nature. (see Acts 7:58. which time is expressly called "the forbearance of God" (Rom. God waited till he should come and make his soul an offering for sin. (1 Tim.

and make his power known". 13:6. 28) in the people of Israel. 14:17. had there been ten righteous men in it. during the time of his reign. see Gen. 155. 5:2. which. as in the men of the old world. then executed heavier ones. (Gen. which are such. and at last drowned him. are partly for his own glory. Now the ends of God's thus dealing with them. forbearance. until their sin was full. There are many instances of the patience. until all his chosen ones are brought to repentance. and longsuffering of God. 19:24) in Pharaoh. until the number of his elect. 18:8). (Luke 13:6-9) and in antichrist. 18:21.7 &c. (1 Peter 3:20. 22) and partly for the sake of his own people who dwell among them. who have many of them. but has reserved them for future times. yet had mercy shown them. forbearance. A Body of Doctrinal Divinity Book 1—Chapter 16 Of The Goodness Of God. and longsuffering of God. daring sinners. as he did Ananias and Sapphira. they are more and more hardened. but spewed them out of it. (Rev. and he spares a wicked world from being burnt up and destroyed. in the wilderness. 6:11. that they may be rendered inexcusable. who had first hints of God's displeasure.people. (Acts 13:18) in the Amorites and Canaanites. The longsuffering of God is exercised towards the ungodly. that they may not suffer with them. which are despised and rejected by them. 13:13. a respite for a while. and by deferring his judgments on them. when he righteously executes his wrath. dead. notwithstanding their grievous provocations of him. to vindicate him from all cruelty and injustice. because they are not speedily executed. and longsuffering". 5). appear just and righteous (Rom. mercy. 9:17. and was grieved with them forty years. or that the earth does not open and swallow them up. in like manner. as it did Dathan and Abiram. (Acts 17:30) in fruitless professors of religion. for their sakes: and he forbears to take vengeance on those that have shed the blood of his saints. to his patience.. This can be attributed to nothing else but. Ex. 4. 14:11. is fulfilled. 6:3) and in the inhabitants of Sodom. (Ex. with respect to the wicked. (Gen. and promise themselves impunity in sin. "to show his wrath. 18:28) in the Gentile world. and the execution of wrath on them at last. and good things for them. 18:32. when the longsuffering of God waited in the days of Noah. p. and longsuffering: and by the multitude of his mercies bestowed upon them. 9:22) and this appears by his supporting them in their beings. whom God had spared some time. grace. till they are "fitted to destruction". refusing to let Israel go. 2:21. 2:4) and by granting to many of them the outward means of grace. 15:16. that it is amazing he does not at once strike them. beginning with lighter judgments. Rom. 18. Ps. forbearance. and no longer. 21. and then destroyed by fire from heaven. ENDNOTES: [1] Lexic. signified by the barren fig tree. whose manners God suffered and bore with. and till the land itself would bear them no longer. even towards "the vessels of wrath" whom he "endures with much longsuffering". in the Red Sea. 2. (Rom. 2:1. 2 Peter 3:9) and another end is for their sakes. thus he would have spared Sodom. and waits to be gracious to them. during their times of ignorance. and his host. (see Job 21:7-13. (Gen. Rev. Cabalist. Having treated of the love. more than other men. (Rom. Lev. it will be proper to take some notice of 105 . 73:4-7. their hearts are set in them to do evil. and exerts his power in their destruction: as in the instance of Pharaoh. and which are called "the riches of his goodness.

Concerning the goodness of God. 2. 34:6. by his own nature and essence. says he. and by his own essence. God". riches. good in the highest degree. "the Good". is "optimus". is the same with the German "Gott" and "Godt". but of and by another. and holiness (Ex. by denying the grace and goodness of God. There may be a show of happiness in such and such outward circumstances of life. then. and Spirit of God. It remains. as they supposed. The name the heathens give to their supreme deity. since he must depend on that from whence he receives his goodness. that he is essentially good. Our Jehovah. grace. but the best of beings. and Simplicius calls him. bestows favours upon them. what goodness they have: what goodness there is in the elect angels. what goodness is in any good man. or is or will be in the saints in heaven. he being not only good. or put into them. "thou. what goodness was in Adam. truth. or bestowed upon them. which is contrary to his simplicity: he is good in and of himself.7). for that God loves any of his creatures. or what is more excellent. every good and perfect gift comes from him. The evil god of Cerdon and Marcion is not the true God. shows mercy to them. is superlatively good. (Ps. the sum and substance of all felicity. yea. 3. and a good man. is so in and of himself. Cotta in Cicero. God is the "summum bonum". nor have creatures anything but what they receive from him. is by nature good. he is the source and fountain of all. good beyond all conception and expression. when God proclaimed his name before Moses. is owing to the goodness of his nature. it is all from him. when they place it or expect it in anything out of God. longsuffering. is better. who made them good originally. from whence they all proceed. what happiness could be enjoyed in them. that is. who are not of themselves inderivatively and independently good. and pleasure. the Goodness of goodnesses. wisdom itself. and by his own essence. so he is goodness itself. in a state of innocence. and his essence. this is only true of God. for then he must be compounded of that. as Plato calls him. the Source of all felicity. for if he was not good of himself. or. the true God. as he is love itself. the "best". who never sinned. ultimately. and this goodness being wanting in heathen deities. originally. and so equally good: but with respect to creatures. and bears much with them. nor an independent Being. And our English word God seems to be a contraction of the word "Good". without which he would not be God. is. is to be referred to God. some may 106 . let the following things be observed: 1. the one God. he is the Father of mercies. however. 86:5) and in many other places. he is t' agayon. Sallustius says. as far as a king. so that the German and English name of the divine Being. justice. is all from God. with the Father. that God is good. Goodness is essential to God. for what. goodness is itself the nature and essence of God. Solomon seems to have reduced them to these three. faithfulness. who partakes of the grace of God. and better than others. and prior to him. he is solely good. is taken from the attribute of his goodness. since what communicates goodness to him must be more perfect than he: all which. a wise man. and not by participation of another. wisdom. Hence one of his names and titles by which he is described and made known. it was not a single attribute only which was proclaimed and made known. than goodness and beneficence? It is a common notion. who are. but the several attributes of mercy. God is the name of goodness.his "goodness". which came. it includes his whole nature and essence. but have always failed. from the Arabic word "Gada". which so signified. Whatever goodness is in creatures. nor would he be the most perfect being. is very unbecoming. Goodness only belongs to God. this was one part of it. and short of him: innumerable have been the sentiments of men about it. in the manner he does. and it is himself. as it is thought. The goodness of God is not distinct from his essence. could go. and solely. "abundant in goodness" (Ex. then there would be some being both better than him. and when he had finished it. charges Epicurus with taking away from God the property of the best and most excellent nature. "There is none good but one. art good". &c. and he made an experiment of them. he. the chiefest good. God only can make men happy. whatever pretensions may be made unto it. excludes them from the claim of deity. (Matthew 19:17) which is to be understood not to the exclusion of the Son. and so he would not be the eternal God. and therefore all goodness. pronounced all "vanity and vexation of spirit". Philo says. to say of God. Unwearied have been the pursuits of men to attain this. that of Good. 34:6). is the assertion of Christ. in common use. When God promised Moses that he would make "all his goodness" pass before him. 33:19. the Fountain of all goodness. Lord.

placing all their happiness in him: while others are saying. the height. and all creature enjoyments. The goodness of God is communicative and diffusive. There is the general goodness of God. and are importunately desirous of the enjoyment of him. as his understanding. nor does he impel. but then it is communicated according to his sovereign will and pleasure. nothing evil in his nature. and nothing but goodness comes from him. (Gen. he is not the author of sin. 73:25). but of God essentially considered: and the design of Christ was. 11:35. for it could not be. since it is by the goodness of God the world is. finite minds cannot comprehend it. only belongs: and it is predicated of the Father. he called good. and especially to men: there is a goodness in inanimate creatures. under pain of his displeasure. he is good. wisdom. 33:5) there is not a creature but what partakes of it. "Who will show us any good?" taking up their contentment in worldly good. There is nothing but goodness in God. and ignorance. whereby they become good and beneficial to others. with respect to each of the objects of it. to raise the mind of the young man to whom he spoke. are unmeasurable. (Amos 3:6) but then punishment of sin is a good. nor tempt with it. that it cannot be said how great it is. which soon passes away. or of one person. as in the case of the selling of Joseph. as it is a vindication of the honour of divine justice. even of him. 5. (James 1:13. The goodness of God. he is abundant in it. and goodness. when Christ says. who are sensible of the vanity of the creature. and Spirit. or of affliction. lift thou up the light of thy countenance upon us". "The Lord is good to all. it is so perfect that nothing can be added to it: the goodness of a creature extends not to God. and other perfections of his.7 52:1. it is so great. and the affliction of the people of God is for their good. he is "light" itself. knowledge. no unrighteousness in any of his ways and works. truth. 14) indeed. and as they came from him. be good. and satisfaction. it is the same as ever. it is to be understood not of God personally considered. and the Lord hath not done it". nor is it capable of communicating any to him. of sin. "who hath first given to him". but as the true God. he not willing it by his permissive will. which is as extensive as his mercy. since they partake of one common undivided nature and essence (1 John 5:7). as such. more or less. in this sense "there is no evil in a city. "the whole earth is full of his goodness". in like manner as his love and mercy. Ps. and are. though he suffers it to be. are infinite. whom. 30:18) of Christ. and remains an inexhaustible fountain. (Ps. his decree is concerned about it. &c. but then. length. all purity. of which there has been instances in angels and men: but the goodness of God is invariably the same. (1 John 1:5) nor does anything that is evil come from him. to the exclusion of the other. but strongly forbids it. they are all very good. nor persuade to it. they say. 8. with respect to the above things. is from God. but there is no solidity in them. it knows no bounds nor limits. and of the righteous law of God. not as a mere man. pant after him. there is a goodness put into them. which gives the greatest pleasure.be in. God". This attribute of goodness belongs to each divine person. 50:20) the evil of punishment of sin. so is his goodness. and cannot be satisfied without him. in the metals and minerals of the earth. in its highest sense. "and in him is no darkness at all". "Lord. (2 Chron. 9:20. the goodness of creatures is but as the morning cloud. 119:68. there is no iniquity in him. God is infinitely good. Son. and his tender mercies are over all his works" (Ps. 145:9). (Neh. and early dew. 6. and he does good. both here and hereafter. Father. A heathen writer argues the goodness of God from the existence of the world. and all evil things of that kind work for their good. error. he overrules it for good. that can be had (Ps. and breadth of it. that is. as quoted above. may be considered as general and special. depth. (Ps. 36). in the same sense. (John 10:11) and of the Spirit. such large communications of it to creatures. in some manner or another. to whom this epithet. joy. and though there has been. (Rom. 143:10) and they must. 4:6. "there is none good but one. indeed. 144:12-15) wherefore good men. to an higher opinion of himself than what he had. 7. in the luminaries of the heavens. he is the only "happy man whose God is the Lord". and endures continually. All creatures are made by God. God must be always good. holiness. 107 . God is immutably and eternally good. the sun. 4.

Son. and many other peculiar favours. that the attribute of "goodness". and all the graces of the Spirit. "truly God is good to Israel". they are pleasant. 4:8). and thoughts of them. 104:27. God is good to the elect angels. since he gives them reason and understanding. being good for medicine. and they have each of them manifested their goodness in acts of it. by laying down his life for the sheep. either have larger endowments of mind. and do the several businesses of life. by their light they themselves are seen. both for this life. Jehovah the Father. and elect men. and many are meat for men. Father. pardon of sin. only partake of. (Matthew 5:45) which is one great instance of his general goodness. so in wisdom and knowledge. 15). have a share in his special goodness. and other objects. some are for one use. magnitude. &c. in the effects of it. 1 Tim. in which good will to men was expressed. and their good. 104:14. and all the blessings of goodness. granting them nearness to himself. justification. and more spiritual peace and joy. or are possessed of greater wealth and riches (Eccl. are the wise and prudent of the world. in partaking of their nature. (Ps. and the gift of his Spirit. he is the good Shepherd. in making promises of good things to them. God gives more of his goodness to men than to brutes. 2 Peter 2:4). 73:1) and that in a very distinguishing manner. in laying up all good things for them in Christ. 17:25. and to be received with thanksgiving. 147:8. 4:10) and in the provision of food for them (Ps. in his good designs towards them. has displayed his goodness to his special people. and trees. Acts 14:16. of repentance. (Ps. when the angels that sinned are not spared by him. 16. and in working out the great and good work of their redemption and salvation. 8:5) and some men have a greater share in the general and providential goodness of God than others. and by providing a 108 . both men and beast. has manifested his goodness to the same persons. and that which is to come. (Ps. In the vegetable creation there is a large display of the goodness of God. both for the cattle of the field and for the service of men (Ps. in choosing them in Christ. 1 Tim. and have more communion with him. and the fowls of the heavens. Jehovah the Son. though they have all the same grace. and also the gift of eternal life itself. 9:11). and even every creature of God is good. while "the rest" are "blinded". by this men see to walk and work. good to look at. and the advantages of them all men share in. plants. and some for another. as to the effects of it. and happiness. but are reserved to judgment (1 Tim. the gift of himself. Among the animals. others for food. light. 4:4) and all creatures. of a good hope of eternal life. 28. and larger discoveries of the love of God. and in the covenant of his grace. 36:6. life. (Job 35:11) and angels have a greater share of his goodness than men. who excel as in strength. (1 Tim. elect angels. grace here. and stars. the gift of his Son. and yet among them there are different displays of divine goodness in the present state. in becoming a Surety. preserving them from apostasy. 145:15. and splendour: they are profitably good. There is indeed a difference made by God in the distribution of his general goodness. and the epithet of "good". as of adoption. whereby they become more knowing. and some have more spiritual light in the Gospel. in others stronger. his own glory. which is sovereign and distinguishing. strength. some herbs. and undertaking for their good.moon. and Spirit. and health of body. but in some it is weaker. God "makes his sun to rise on the evil and on the good". and in bestowing good gifts on them. or have more comeliness. All which must be referred to his sovereign good will and pleasure. as he is not to reprobates. the spiritual and mystical Israel of God. "the election hath obtained" all the special blessings of goodness. 5:21. and through their kind and benign influences shed on the earth. yet not to the same degree. The special goodness of God. as the gift of faith. 17.28. Many are the acts and instances of divine goodness to the people of God in common. in setting them apart for himself. and glory hereafter. some have larger measures of grace. confirming them in the estate they were created in. and to all eternity. It has been observed. (Rom. partake of the goodness of God in the preservation of them. and has shown himself to be so. they have all alike precious faith. which are not imparted to all creatures alike. and to be wiser than the beasts of the field. their form. belong to each of the three divine persons. 11:7) they are made to differ from others thereby in time. many precious fruits are brought forth. Elect men. some have greater spiritual gifts for usefulness than others. hence man is said to be made a little lower than the angels.

and good pasture for them: he is. because it is a passion. prope finem. 1. and accordingly I shall distinctly consider them. A Body of Doctrinal Divinity Book 1—Chapter 17 Of The Anger And Wrath Of God. ad Alkoran. 1. with whom he is angry. hatred. beneficentissimus quam maximus". and compassion. for they imagine he has no concern in the 109 . there are other things to be considered. [8] De Republica. Besides the love and kindness of God. 2. favour. and as the earnest and pledge of their future glory. as anger. l. his mercy. but not anger. Praefat. and Comforter of them. The Epicureans deny that either is in God. and has been. as a Spirit of adoption. [9] Sallust de Diis. wrath. The Anger of God. and even a sort of madness. Cicero de Natura Deorum. and beneficence in God to men. Jehovah the Spirit. and what is unbecoming a wise and good man. p. Sanctifier. Pythag. as in men.good fold. and according to our notion of them. pity. as in God. and supplication. [2] Vid. and in what sense. Hinckelman. 687. in all ages. and a sealer of them up unto the day of redemption. 7. First. 21. That Anger belongs to God. and intercede for good things for them. 74. which may come under the notion of affections. which flow from the goodness of his nature. neither favour and good will. and he ever lives to speak a good word. and on what account. is good unto them. the Fountain of goodness and grace to all his people. this they suppose to be a weakness. p. l. they allow grace. as the guide of them through this world. p. grace. as the author of the good work of grace in them. for the supply of all their wants. and wrath is the height of anger. or on whom his anger is exercised. 2. show that it belongs to God. c. &c. and his longsuffering and forbearance. and good will. And shall. c. [3] "Optimus maximus quidem ante optimus. [4] Ibid. first. they may be distinguished: anger is a lower and lesser degree of wrath. This is denied by some philosophers of the Cynic and Stoic sects. [6] In Epictetum. l. 1. [5] De Diis. secondly. ENDNOTES: [1] Leg. 1a. Hierocles in Carmin. and much more unbecoming Deity. 6. And. id est. nor anger and wrath. The anger and wrath of God are often used promiscuously in Scripture. [7] agayov gar hn fusei. or may be predicated of him. his grace. as a Teacher. and yet they sometimes seem to be distinct. good will. to signify the same thing. l. Alleg.

that such and such a thing displeased him. returns to himself again. which. and often speak of it. Ps. nor is angry with them. false swearing. nor resents what is done by them. as if it was "ura". 4:26) and it is certain there was anger in the human nature of Christ. nor are they in trouble. covetousness. nor the proudest mortals. their sacrifices." These. is the most provoking to him: since it strikes at his very being. Secondly. and when he lays it down. and there are some sins more especially which provoke him to anger. and so is "ab urendo". and particularly of faith. 13. there may be anger in men without sin. without a right principle. nor look upon it with delight. 90:11) nothing can resist it. on account of it. and by which they provoked the Lord to anger. the taking of the name of God in vain. as other men. would be to transcribe a great part of the Bible. in an unregenerate state. but not in an infinite and uncreated one. the "rod of God" is not on them. or that there is any pain or uneasiness in him. 11:1. and they spend their days in health. But though God is slow to anger. 27) being in the flesh. or was evil. "God is angry with the wicked every day". it is often said in Scripture. and fancy they shall have peace when they walk after the imagination of their evil hearts. and neither regards their good actions. and though men may promise themselves impunity in sin. are highly displeasing to God. nor their bad ones. (Job 21:7-13. and resented by him. "to go". as given by a learned grammarian. wealth. and ordinances: and not these only. The objects of the anger of God. when in anger. as disobedience to parents. of all sins. and have more than heart can wish. adultery. "shining sins". worship. this cannot. is sin. so perjury. 21:4. 13. are an abomination to him. see (Deut. not rocks and mountains. all they do is sin. brought with a wicked mind. and so is neither pleased nor displeased with them. as in human minds. and a right end. and add sin to sin. nor the stoutest and adamantine hearts. or on whom it is exercised. oftentimes their families. be ascribed to God: rather it may be. it is so contrary to his nature. from burning. 21. for God is a pure and holy being. and so are displeasing to God. 7:11) because they are daily sinning against him. that he is ruffled and discomposed. and especially as it may be defined from the etymology of the Latin word for it "ira". when God is said to be angry. flocks. but then we are not to imagine. Nah. nor was he conscious of any. and is neither kind and favourable to them. and think themselves to be such. we are exhorted to be angry and sin not. 73:3-12) and seem as if they were the favourites of heaven. moves slowly to express his anger. deriving it from "ire". and neglect of his word. 1b. Likewise distrust of the power and providence of God. and give many particular instances of it: to produce the whole proof of this. 1 King 16:33). and not right in his sight (Num. (Mark 3:5) and so there may be in the divine mind. Isa. so it may be in finite created spirits. he cannot but have an aversion to it. 1:6). being destitute of the grace of God. and robs him of his glory. and repugnant to his will. as God is: and much less is this to be considered as a criminal passion in him. as it is in men. as the sins against the first table of the law. their whole lives are one continued series and course of wickedness. and herds. Judg. particularly idolatry. and complaining of it. but sins against the second table of the law. and all their religious services are but "splendida peccata". nor do the things which are pleasing in his sight. increase. Ps. 25). he cannot take any pleasure in it. and with sinners. or rather from the Hebrew word hrx which signifies to burn. murder. as if a man. 11:27. and an abhorrence of it. Now "who knoweth the power of God's anger?" (Ps. though God is angry with them continually. and pleasure. they cannot please God. the ploughing of the wicked. All sin is displeasing to God. none can stand before God when once he is angry. but his anger and jealousy 110 . (Ps. 76:7. and the anger of God is compared to fire in Scripture. (Prov. 5:24. profanation of the Lord's day. 59:15). (Eph. as it too often is in men. without an imputation of weakness or sin. 2:12.affairs of men. 2 Sam. which are overturned and cast down by it. in whom there was no sin. (Job 9:5. nor the mightiest monarchs. But then anger is to be considered not as a passion. 60:1. as he is often described. yet at length God will not spare them. Ps. nor stand before it. and is often said to be kindled. or affection in God. false witness. and blasphemy of it. and resented by him. yet he will most certainly do it in the issue of things. that there is any commotion or perturbation in God's mind. "without which it is impossible to please him. as being kindled against particular persons. which was often the case of the Israelites. without iniquity: besides. yet they do not always appear under the visible and public tokens of his resentment. in any sense. Anger in God is no other than a disgust with sin. and every evil thing (see Isa. and against whole bodies of men. 32:16. their very actions in civil life. But the scriptures everywhere ascribe anger to God. theft. murmuring at it. goes out of himself.

and chastise him for a fault. whom God has cast down to hell. because of his anger. that is. 2a. among men. displeased with them. and against David. which is the vengeance that belongs to him. he has caused death. Hosea 11:9) and it seems to be no other than his punitive justice. in some dispensations of his. the "fury" and "fierceness" of it. so that God repented he had made man in it. and all his offspring. (Ps. and a brief review of them will give a more enlarged idea of the wrath of God. and against Moses and Aaron. but limited and restrained to a part of 111 . or vengeful judgment. because of their sins". there may be anger in the nearest and dearest relatives. and unbelief prevails. in that he retains not his anger for ever. when full of violence and corruption. and in his wrath he determined to destroy man and beast in it. is often only in their sense and apprehension of it. (Deut. where. Then follows another. putting them away in anger. yet are dreadful instances of the wrath of God against sin. as Jonathan was with Saul. 77:9) when he seems to turn a deaf ear to their prayers. in consequence of it. As temporary. and where there is the most affectionate regard to each other: the anger of Jacob was kindled against his beloved Rachel.? (Rom. even his vindictive wrath. for not sanctifying him before the children of Israel. 9:22). "What if God willing to show his wrath". 29:24) it is his anger not only kindled and incensed. 3). since the one is but for a moment. so that. they conclude he is angry with them. but blown up into a flame. when God goes forth towards them. (Ps. and includes his will to punish sinners according to the demerit of their sins in strict justice. it is the "indignation" of his anger. (Deut. and yet dearly love him. Moreover. a father may be angry with his son. 30:30. and all his posterity. and still continue his love to them. &c. holy and good men. and yet may be angry. Now this apparent anger. because he delighteth in mercy. though not so general. in one way or another. for speaking against Moses. Besides. 38:3) but when he takes off his afflicting hand. then they suppose his anger is turned away from them. or have shared in pardoning grace and mercy. for even that is done in love. 42:25. and he will recompense. and which he did. by bringing a flood on the world of the ungodly. and there will be more. (Ps. and others. nor rest in their bones. 30:5) a very short space of time indeed. The Wrath of God is the heat of his great anger. and shutting up his tender mercies in anger. since not one of them have been spared. 2. and the actual execution of it. or appearance of anger. Solomon. (Isa. grants his gracious presence. and for only one single sin of his. And this is not at all inconsistent with the love of God unto them: anger is not opposite to love. differs from his anger to wicked men. 29:19. the anger of God towards them. yet bear a true filial affection for him. 85:2. that is. and chides them for their sins: yet he does not keep anger for ever: this is the criterion by which he is distinguished from other gods. of which there have been many instances and examples. or will be. (Isa. Mic. then they conclude he has turned himself from the fierceness of his anger (Ps. God loves his people with an everlasting and unchangeable love. for the first sin. 20). though God hides his face from his people. by his chastisement of them. we read of his anger being kindled against Aaron and Miriam. for sins committed by them. for it. The first instance of it is in the condemnation of Adam. 103:9. all the children of Adam are the children of God's wrath. and "they have no soundness in their flesh. insomuch that neither of them were admitted to enter the land of Canaan. they interpret it. and show his resentment at sin committed by them. and the other is continual. 7:18) and in this the anger of God towards his people. (Ps. The next is the drowning of the old world.shall smoke against them. his threatenings to do it. 80:4) and when he afflicts them. then they apprehend he comes forth in anger against them. and a son may be angry with a father. and it grieved him to the heart. How great must that sin be! what sinfulness must there be in it! how greatly must the divine Being be incensed by it! in that. Now the wrath of God may be considered. I shall only observe what examples of it have been. and manifests his pardoning love and grace. though they may not be in full torment. and all the curses written in the law shall come upon them. (Ps. which are not agreeable to them. Not to take notice of the apostate angels. and does not give an immediate answer to them. his wrath to pass in judgment on him. 27:9. 12:1) so when he hides his face from them. and never alters and varies in it. God is angry with his own special people. "endures but for a moment". or what is executed in the present life. this they call being angry against the prayer of his people. and when these dispensations are varied.

it is the same with the second death. everlasting destruction. "he cast upon them the fierceness of his anger. and the judgment of God will come on Babylon in one day. and the heavens melt away with fervent heat. and on the antichristian states. 30:33) which is an awful representation of the wrath of God. (Ps. And by whatsoever term this state of wrath is expressed. when "God swore in his wrath. and will be ever laying out. not to be endured. famine. of which the prophet says. The plagues inflicted on the Egyptians. and. to show it forth. But there is no greater instance of it. The children of Israel themselves often provoked the Lord to wrath. This is expressed by fire. and righteous judgment of God". or what more fully demonstrates it. Whenever the four sore judgments of God. (Num. 22) as they did likewise at the report of the spies. And when the end of all things is come. their sins being imputed to him. it is called hell and hell fire. and brought it down upon them. until which time God reserves wrath for his adversaries. and under which wrath. 1 Thess. (Isa. but suffered him to be put to the most exquisite pain. seeing it is revealed against all unrighteousness and ungodliness of men. 14:23. where they murmured against the Lord. and all in it will be burnt with fire. and he was stricken for them. indignation. and Kibrothhattaavah. when demanded of them. God spared him not: how inconceivably great must his wrath be against sin. will be poured forth on antichrist. when wrath came upon them to the uttermost. or the valley of Hinnom. each of their captivities. it 112 . as an emblem of hell fire. when wrath went forth from the Lord. as at Horeb. there is a day fixed. doth kindle it". where the Jews burnt their children in sacrifice to Molech. the sword of justice was sheathed in him. everlasting punishment. the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah. in its full extent. but to that which is to come. "Tophet is ordained of old--the pile thereof is fire. will be burnt up by it. that ascends for ever and ever". and misuse of the prophets of the Lord. 1:10). it is always spoken of as what will continue for ever: it is called everlasting fire. this is no other than the curse of the law that is broken. 16:46). by the Romans. even devouring fire and everlasting burnings. at Taberah. is taken from Gehinnom. for their sins. as he also observes. when. so that wrath arose against them. and these with earthquakes. have been exercised in the world. as the Psalmist says. from the beating of drums in it. and in a little while. than what our Lord Jesus Christ suffered and endured as the Surety of his people. the word for which. "the smoke of torment. 19. in their room and stead. which not only reaches to this life. 78:49. and the wicked. are presignifications. they should not enter into his rest. provoked the eyes of God's glory to such a degree. and which place. concerning the land of Canaan. to the uttermost of the demerit of sin." And again. were found on him. for by inflicting these on them. and the plague began. upon the affair of Korah. There is the wrath of God that is yet to come: the Scriptures speak of future wrath. and in which captivity they are to this day. and his accomplices. and such like uncommon events. the day of the Lord will burn like an oven. when God spared not in the least his own dearly beloved Son. that he rained fire and brimstone from heaven upon them. Witness. among his treasures. as they often have been. the vindictive wrath of God was poured forth upon him. whose inhabitants being notorious sinners. but. which in part. wrath that will take place in the life which is to come. they are always in wrath. or the fire of divine wrath. commences at the death of wicked men. which lies in a separation from God. and wild beasts. for not letting Israel go. that the shrieks of the children might not be heard by their parents. and destruction. and foretokens of greater wrath yet to come. particularly their captivity in Babylon. and trouble". (Deut. through their mocking at. and will be complete at their resurrection from the dead (Matthew 3:7. he not only made a way to his anger.the world. both in body and soul. "the day of wrath. and set them as an example and emblem of mens' suffering the vengeance of eternal fire. than which nothing is more intolerable. 9:8. and there was no remedy. and others of the plain. pestilence. when they made the calf. As to the objects of this wrath. like stubble. in a sense of his hot displeasure. Massah. and their last captivity. for the sins of his people! 2b. was called Tophet. and will have neither root nor branch left: all which will be expressive of the great wrath of God. and much wood: the breath of the Lord. in the New Testament. also. the earth. wrath. the sword. is another instance of the wrath of God. called. and pouring forth. like a stream of brimstone. the seven vials full of the wrath of God. it is laid up in store with him. 50). and for the commencement of which.

by such who have the opportunity of reading and hearing it.lies against all that are unrighteous and ungodly. (Rom. rebel against it. particularly. 6. than which nothing is more provoking to wrath (1 John 5:10). (John 3:19) and is of the deists of the present age. and afterwards. remains. not for that which is through the want of the means of faith. and abides. they are children of wrath as others. and that without remedy. 2:3) which phrase not only means that they are serving of wrath. (Isa. by being made a curse for them. 1 Thess. 3:19. who has swore that he will not be wrath with them. or we perish". 21. when the law works a sense of wrath in them. and are convicted by it. (Eph. 1:18. or against the gospel of Christ. and as all have sinned. who has appointed them not to wrath. 1:18. but they shall always see the face of God. or his afflicting hand is upon them. their afflictions and chastisements are all in love. there is no help for him. condemnation. notwithstanding that. 2:3. and so as they sin without law. or against the law of God. afore prepared for glory: concerning whom Jehovah says. Col. that he is the Messiah and Saviour of men. and disbelieves Christ as a Saviour. "Lord. and not only found guilty. 4). which that discovers. save us. and pleasures for evermore" (Rev. and yet either attend not to the evidence of it. some apprehensions of the wrath of God. they are liable to it. and are secured from it? They are secured from it by the decree of God. to bear it in their room. break it. when under the hiding of God's face. on whom this wrath comes. 10:14. wrath is on him. (Rom. 1 John 4:16) being sinners indeed. and who are disobedient to the gospel of Christ. God forbore to execute the sentence. they are saved from wrath. as they are sinners. (Ps. and till that was done. tribulation and anguish. being justified. but to obtain salvation. even on every soul of man that does evil. how is it that they escape it. they receive not the record God has given of his Son. 54:9) which is immutable: by the suretyship engagements of Christ for them. or. "love" itself. and his fierce wrath goes over them. and which. (1 Thess. and since he denies divine revelation. and there will be no curse hereafter. 28. obey not the truth. 5:5. the wrath of God comes upon men either for their sins against the light of nature. and yet denies it. as a transgressor of that. which the law has passed on him. 27:4. but the wrath of God abideth on him": he that does not believe that Christ is the Son of God. and in danger of it. 2:12) and who also are disobedient to the law of God. 23) but there are some particularly described. 5:10) and by his righteousness imputed to them. there is no wrath comes upon them now. and is the ministration of condemnation and death unto them. all are "children of wrath". as transgressors. 6) such who are disobedient to the light of nature. but obey unrighteousness. 9) they are also represented as unbelievers: "He that believeth not the Son. and they are called "children of disobedience". 5:9) which decree is unfrustrable by the oath of God. which is no other than the wrath of God. 3:5. at times. and be "in his presence. and so make him a liar. it must abide: now it is not any sort of unbelief for which this wrath is. but that. 16. and say. 1:8. which is the gift of God. when they flee to Christ. rejects the gospel scheme. but are condemned unto it. shall not see life. the sentence of wrath. from wrath to come. 19. 113 . under first awakenings. (Rom. on these come indignation and wrath. and to whom he is all love. and convictions of sin. such as in heathens. through which. (Isa. (2 Thess. whereby he delivered them from wrath to come. they are obnoxious to the curse of the law. and transgressors of the law of God. Lam. as. "fury is not in me". they perish without law. and hold truth in unrighteousness. where are fulness of joy. 3:25) by Christ's actually bearing the chastisement of their peace. and salvation by him. In short. This was the case of the Jews of old. they imagine that the wrath of God lies hard upon them. without his grace vouchsafed. 3:1) but in reality. and enduring the wrath of God in their room. they are found guilty of it. 3:9. 88:7. called the forbearance of God. reject it. (Eph. Rom. 89:38. 2:8. 5:9) though even these persons may have. (Ps. and are under sin. and leaves in them a fearful looking for of judgment and fiery indignation. and which he only can give. and peculiar to his elect. 17) nor which is through the want of the special grace of faith. 22:3. (Eph. and are slaves to their sinful lusts and pleasures. nor hereafter. and being so near it. and death. There are some on whom no wrath comes here. for "how shall they believe on him of whom they have not heard?" (Rom. who are the vessels of mercy. Rom. whom it pronounces guilty. they can never have: but it is the disbelief of the report of the gospel. they are really under the sentence of wrath.

and not to be refused. A Body of Doctrinal Divinity Book 1—Chapter 18 Of The Hatred Of God. to hate sin that dwells in them. 5:5. in good men. I shall consider both what that is. Sallustium de Diis. even in the most perfect manner. yea grace. there will be an hatred of that which is contrary to the object loved: thus good men. All sin is an abomination to him. "Do not I hate them. Sin must be hateful to God. therefore God. for to the Son of God he saith. as such. then this must come from God. 1. delighted in. Nor is hatred to be considered as a passion in him. 1. 97:10. so they hate that which is evil. and hated by men. & 5. by which men. and this may be concluded from love being in God. c. like themselves. to all which may be added. but where there is love of any person or thing. 4. 5:5. as they are clothed in the righteousness of Christ. 8. and hatest none of these that thou hast made. since it is so contrary to his nature. and his execution of it. and not hated by him. (Rom. and hatest iniquity. though this is made use of as an argument against it. c. who taketh vengeance?" No. 407. (Titus 3:3) since he is a perfectly holy Being. and for the truth of which he appeals to God. in their worst estate. '' (Wisdom 11:24) which is true of the creatures of God. "thou lovest righteousness.ENDNOTES: [1] Vide Senecam de Ira. 14. hath anointed thee with the oil of gladness above thy fellows". and they hate sin. Yet the scriptures do. There are some that deny that hatred belongs to God. O Lord that hate thee? I hate them with perfect hatred" (Ps. as none are by God. he is righteous in that. and also to hate them that hate the Lord. it is a virtue. (Ps. for sin is no creature of his. sometimes signifies no other than his will to punish sin and sinners. but there are some sins that are 114 . and unrighteous men. Zech. 4. and urge a passage in the Apocrypha. his people. as has been shown. 139:21. Now if it is a virtue. that is sin. from whom all grace. or that he hates anything. and this is consistent with his not hating any of his creatures. [3] Donatus apud Zanchium de Natura Dei. and good things. & Demophili Sentent. active Spirit. [2] Vide Lactantium de ira Dei. 45:7) besides. but sin is not any of them. 1. Amos 5:15). as the apostle did. p. For the further illustration of this point. What that is he hates. as diametrically opposite to him. "And is God unrighteous. so he hates unrighteousness. Ed. 7:15) for without the grace of God it is not hated. as he is in all his works (Rom. or owing to the grace of God in them. thy God. 22). and is solely agent. and "hating one another". and are loved. and found in the ways of righteousness. 3:5). ``Thou lovest all beings. because opposite to it. p. So the righteous Lord. in a higher degree. that they do hate sin and sinners. as David did. (Ps. in many places. 8:17) and most truly and rightly. and is committed by them. c. l. to his will. all the creatures he made were very good. l. 6) and so is an act of justice. as they love those that are good. (Ps. and who they are God is said to hate. who is a pure. of punitive justice. the chiefest good. as such. the chiefest evil. is not capable of suffering anything: much less as it is a criminal passion. attribute to him hatred both of persons and things. as it is in men. and not a patient. every creature of God is good. (Ps. rejected. and to his righteous law. c. when ascribed to God. that hatred. Gale. he is not the author of sin. are described. 6. and without iniquity. "hateful". but sin was not among them. as he loves righteousness and righteous men. they love God. and consequently must be in him. for as they are made by him they are all very good. and every good gift comes.

45:7. that whereas while some are chosen of God. (Rom. 63:10). that in this business there are two acts of the divine will. 16:22. according to election. (Deut. but as sinful men. it was said unto her". and brings down his indignation and wrath. not of any positive hatred in the heart of God towards them. have a less affection for them than him. might stand. 1:8. and fight against them (Isa. and hating iniquity. that the purpose of God. and the preference given to others. (Zech. and violence of every sort. and consistent with the perfections of God. is true of all the objects of election and non-election. Amos 5:21) sins against the two tables of the law. all kind of injury to the persons and properties of men. but of him that calleth. (Ps. while they were in her womb. And now let it be observed. and with what has been said of his hatred of sin and sinners. for thus it is said of Jacob and Esau. a comparative one. 61:8) and every evil thing a man may imagine against his neighbour (Zech. "depart from me. nor to raise to honour and glory: and this God may do antecedent to. as their Surety and Saviour. which stands among the six things which God hates. The Son of God has given sufficient proof of his loving righteousness. as it is written. but in nothing more than by the condemnation of sin in the flesh of Christ. and so by the punishment of wicked men to all eternity. but Esau have I hated". not of works. ye that work iniquity". 15. tribulation and anguish. and as man. I never loved you. and this he has done by inveighing against the sins of the Jews in his time. God the Father has shown his hatred of sin by the judgments he has executed in casting down from heaven to hell the angels that sinned. Who they are that God hates. the deeds of the Nicolaitans he is said to hate. when he suffered in the room and stead of his people. 1 John 1:8) but "workers" of it. Isa. that this hatred is to be understood. 9). personally considered. postponed. and also of the Gentile" (Rom. 9:11-13). on every soul of man that does evil. are without it. 9) and are true of him as a divine person. but Esau have I hated". Heb. bringing a flood upon the world of the ungodly. as the apostle expressly says. of the Jew first. 8:17). and as Mediator. as murder. 44:3-5) perjury. and later ones. traders in it. lest worse things came unto them: and the Holy Ghost is not only grieved by the sinful actions and behaviour of men. which is called an hatred of them. driving Adam and Eve out of paradise. and wife. (Matthew 7:23). of whom these things are expressly said. in this sense the word is used in (Luke 14:26). as idolatry. that a man must have positive hatred of such near relations. 5:5) not men. yea. and children. community of wives. rapine. the one is a will not to bestow benefits of special goodness. which. for then all would be hated. "the elder shall serve the younger. 6:16-18) fornication. and brethren. adultery. "The children not being yet born. (Rev. neither having done any good or evil. And what is said of these. And all this is true of each of the divine persons. not to give grace. and of his own life. he cannot be my disciple": the meaning of which cannot be. and sisters. but of a negative and comparative hatred of them. Jer. 11:5. "Jacob have I loved. to those it will be said. I always hated you. make it the business of their lives. he hates "all the workers of iniquity. and so prefer him unto them. (Ps. 15) theft. and all reprobates: and that this may appear yet clear. make a trade of it. and preferred by him. Jacob have I loved. but may be vexed by them. so as to turn to be their enemy. (Ps. or the other done any evil. and without any consideration of sin. (Rom. when they sin and transgress his law. 1 John 3:8. (Mal. (John 8:34. and not all that sin. as men. raining fire and brimstone on Sodom and Gomorrah. (Isa. by his severe usage of the buyers and sellers in the temple. The scriptures speak of an hatred of some persons antecedent to sin. and his own life also. (Prov. and by the chastisements of his own people. 1:2) and which was before the one had done any good. Which leads me to consider. postpone them to him. "workers of iniquity". 3:23. neglected. and without the consideration of it. but that he should be negligent of these in comparison of Christ. and to be brought to great dignity and honour. and by his exhortations and threatenings to men to sin no more. in comparison of the love shown. even the best of men. and none. actual transgressions. "If any man hate not his father. continually and constantly commit it. others are passed by. and are appointed to obtain grace and glory. yet may be understood in a good sense. and they are sinners. 2:6. set less by them. and mother. 9) and God is impartial. and by. robbery. the mother of them. and set less by. or have sin in them. it should be observed.particularly observed as hated by him. 8:17) all insincere and hypocritical acts of worship. for all have sinned in Adam. 2. but 115 . in like sense are we to understand the above expression concerning Esau. with other instances in following ages. 1:14. I "never knew you". though it may be attended with some difficulty to account for. 2:8. whose whole lives are one continued series of sinning. that is. to Rebekah.

l. and is predicated of him. with respect to brute animals. and the perfections of it. but as to their effects. which is not willed without the consideration of it. fitted for destruction by sin. Hence Aquinas. and this of joy is expressed by him in very different effects. and raises them up by repentance. in the one he rejoices in the glory of his justice and holiness. and particularly. ungodly men. is without the consideration of sin. or rest of the will. and as they apprehend. as he says. Silvester. they are the wicked God has made. To rejoice and take delight and complacency in himself. in the other. as in the cases of Jacob. 9:22). or a will to punish. but of something exterior. 1. hatred. or appointed to the day of evil. in what is willed by it. in his own nature. as having all-sufficiency in him. who defines joy and delight a certain quietation. and never bears any hatred to their persons. "Is it not lawful for me to do what I will with mine own?" (Matthew 20:15). and carries it out of. such and such effects being done by men. or at an excess. it is also made a question with them whether delight is a passion? but my business with it is only as it concerns God. which is often attributed to God in the scriptures. Gentiles. hatred. and joy being not only of that. 16:4. indeed. when in its height. and no other. it is the cause of the thing willed. when the news of his son Joseph's being alive were brought him. and therefore by his own will greatly rejoices and delights in himself: and though he makes joy and delight in some respect to differ. In the one act. Rom. in a little wrath hide his "face" from them. c. on whom it is the will of God to show his wrath. observes. however. which is his principal "volitum". bears some resemblance to the affection of joy in men. believed not for joy: and. he still loves them freely. and in the other. and. and in consideration of it. 1. as in inflicting punishment. but he never hates them. and of the disciples. 28:63). or what is willed by him. to inflict evil. when fallen into sin. but is. Joy. and beyond itself. in ibid. though he hates their sins. The other act of the divine will is. Jude 1:4. delight flowing from a good really conjoined. to which hatred is opposite: he may be angry with them. as it is a transport of the mind. and chastise them for their sins. 96. vessels of wrath. as he himself says. Though joy. as it were.act according to his sovereign will and pleasure. Francisc. in whom there is delight. yea. and manifests and applies his pardoning grace to them. he may. as ascribed to God. is not to be considered as a passion in him. when they heard of the resurrection of Christ. punishment being only willed for it: but then God never hates his elect in any sense. or. but not joy. 116 . so some philosophers and schoolmen make them to be the same. seems to be no other than delight and complacency in persons and things. ENDNOTES: [1] Aquinas contr. A Body of Doctrinal Divinity Book 1—Chapter 19 Of The Joy Of God. not as in themselves. indeed. all affections that are ascribed to God. is with it. whom he has foreordained to that condemnation. are ascribed to him. they are always loved by him. in the displays of his grace and goodness (see Deut. and he rests infinitely well pleased in himself. as in them. and who may be said. by some philosophers. for though sin is not the cause of the act of the will. and shows his resentment at them. renews. only they observe a difference. take joy to be a species of delight. when so and so affected. Vid. as well as in conferring benefits. that God must greatly rest quiet and satisfied in himself. denied of him. Hence when similar ones are done by God. the like affections are ascribed to him. since he is under no obligation to confer benefits. and make his power known (Prov. but may bestow them on whom he pleases. or a denial of grace. and that is always for sin. and so a fulness of content and satisfaction. in which there is an all-sufficiency.

or in themselves. and wrought out by his Son. Ps. is the strength and security of the saints. 32:38-41) and these not as creatures. and what he appointed them to: he rejoices and delights in his work of grace on the hearts of his people: this is their beauty. and well pleasing in his sight. and issues in it. so does the Lord rejoice over them. and crown of rejoicing. with exceeding joy. as of his love. (Luke 15:3-5. and still less as sinful creatures. In the works of creation. the works of his hands. vessels in whom he has no delight and pleasure. and of which joy there are new expressions in conversion (see Luke 15:7. 14. 62:4. Isa. &c. 149:4. partly because of his own glory displayed therein. his Beulah. was from all eternity rejoicing in the habitable parts of the earth. curiously wrought by him. yet there is a depth of riches. He rejoices and takes delight and complacency in his works (Ps. to bestow benefits upon them. and his delights were with the sons of men. by his Spirit. greatly desires. (Jer. and he still appears to have pleasure in them. in whom God is well pleased. and in the exercise of those graces. even the beauty of holiness. hope. by his continuance of them in being. being all according to his sovereign will and pleasure. guilty and defiled. the king. 12:2) and which he expresses at their conversion. to make them prosperous. Song the Jews interpret (1 Chron. in those that hope in his mercy" (Ps. to beautify them with salvation. 9. is so early. 35:27) which joy is full. as drawn forth by him. 22-24). so of his truth and faithfulness. so God the Father rejoiced in them from everlasting. unsearchable and past finding out. secured thereby. He may be truly said to rejoice. 104:31). and so of the gladness of his heart. and take pleasure in his people. These. by which they are all glorious within. (Jer. as he often is. and especially when they will be manifest. both in him and his divine Father. but what delight must God take in them. in whom he delights. 8:31) and which joy he felt under all his sorrows and sufferings. yield an unspeakable delight and pleasure in the contemplation of them. and will remain for ever (Neh. and mercy. 16:27) "gladness in his place". but as in Christ. he says. grace. either as considered in Adam. And so all his people. which he. 3. with delight and pleasure. indeed. (Ps. but with it in him. as a bridegroom rejoices over his bride. he delights in the graces which he himself. harmony. in whom. grace here. and pronounced them all very good. it being a love of complacency and delight. Song 4:9. 149:4. and therefore. Mal. and given to him. when working out their salvation. and connection. 147:11. it is plain God properly delights in himself. in which prosperity he takes pleasure. 5) not in all men. 8:10. in the last day. many of them. by whom they are seen and known in their beauty. he rejoices in them. and in making all things work together for their good. and blesses on account of them (Isa. 32:41. of joy in himself. has wrought in them. not only with joy and gladness in themselves. a thing his heart was set upon from everlasting. especially in spiritual things. they are his Hephzibah. and whereby he is glorified. but rejoices in himself and others. Wherefore. 45:13. the day of his open espousals to them. Jude 1:24) and this joy over them. what he resolved should be. fear. (Prov. in which he is always concerned (John 5:17). and the springs and causes of them. and in all that are in him. it is hearty and sincere. and partly because of the salvation of his people. that being the time of finding his lost people. 3:17). (Heb. and the several ends answered by them? God rejoices and takes delight particularly in the great work of redemption. is to do them good. as they are his workmanship. his poem. and though they are now. an overflow of it. contrived by his infinite wisdom. And likewise the Son of God. when he had finished. their faith. love. Zeph. (Isa. which. 19:25. both of the wisdom and knowledge of God in them. 1:10) but his special covenant people. for there are some in whom he has no joy. 60:21). as chosen in him. there is a redundancy. and glory hereafter. and. who will present them before his Father and himself. for as his love to them. so his joy in them. 9:17. delight. by upholding all things by the word of his power: he rejoices and delights in the works of his providence. he not only rested from them. when they shall be introduced into his presence. he looked them over. "The Lord taketh pleasure in them that fear him.hence. so far as they are known by men. ENDNOTES: 117 . 10). but rested in them. to whom he is married. (Ps. holiness and justice. 2. Song 3:11) and they will also be his joy. 27:11.

[2] Aquin. 16). whose nature is so pure. oppression. Holiness is an essential attribute of God. 1. apud ibid. as to be without spot or stain. (Lev. 40:25. Sum. 1. and therefore none of them are or can be exercised in a wrong manner. and. "he swears by himself. though it cannot be attained to. men are exhorted to "sanctify" the Lord. or faithfulness. angels and men. 89:35. and harmony of all the rest. he is very frequently called "holy". as the lustre. without it. as and because he is holy. and in him is no darkness or impurity at all. [5] R. and he will not swear by any less. which has appeared by the apostasy of the one. or sanctified. he is the pattern of purity and holiness. 1 Peter 1:15. but that his holiness be declared. unholiness is the imperfection of every rational being in whom it is. (Isa. and without iniquity (Deut. Gentiles. what is wisdom or knowledge. c. 3. this title he takes to himself. And as it is his nature and essence. 384. And as it is his nature and essence. because he can swear by no greater". And. as it is in him. 6:8) which places put and compared together show that the holiness of God is himself. glory. [4] Contr. and. [3] Ibid. prima 2 par. (Ex. manifested. and belongs to him. 45. show that it is in God. 32:4). Amos 4:2. p. as "he is of purer eyes than to behold iniquity". it is what has made angels and men both impure and imperfect. Having considered those attributes of God which bear a likeness to affections in men. l. Hoses 11:9) and is often given him by others. and the fall 118 . and is the glory of them. and can neither be increased nor diminished. Plato in Philebo. as the holiness of angels and men. 19:2. art. and it has been thought to be not so much a particular and distinct attribute of itself. or to any bad purpose. 14. and so is his nature. A Body of Doctrinal Divinity Book 1—Chapter 20 Of The Holiness Of God. 1. Ps. and to be copied after: men should be holy. c. 8:13. 6:13. in which he is to be followed. and since no men. indeed. 31.[1] Sallustius de Diis. therefore none are in themselves perfect. and is what is called "the beauty of the Lord". 27:4) as it is the beauty of the good angels. and of regenerate men. and cruelty? but God is "glorious in holiness". and are directed to pray that his "name" may be "hallowed". when. Quaest. truth. it is so perfect that nothing can be added to it. Holiness is the purity and rectitude of his nature. so he is of a purer heart and mind than to have one sinful thought in it: his thoughts are not as ours. but tyranny. justice. c. l. his ways and works are perfect. 2. and yet he swears by his holiness. and "the Holy One". 15. are without sin. even the best. The scriptures most abundantly ascribe it to him. First. without holiness. indeed. (Ps. as holiness. 15:11) this dives a lustre to all his perfections. (Isa. 11:44. and what it is. (Heb. it is one of the imitable perfections of God. the holiness of a creature is changeable. but craft and cunning? or what is power. it is immutable and invariable. and shall begin with the holiness of God. I proceed to consider those which in them may be called virtues. or anything like it: he is light and purity itself. Matthew 6:9) the meaning is not as if he was to be. 90. or righteousness. it is his nature and essence. it cannot be greater than it is. & Avicenna in ibid. & Aristot. art. therefore. and celebrated more and more. Theolog. or could be made more holy than he is. it is himself. But as for God. he is holiness itself. it is infinite and unbounded. being just and true. without holiness he would not be that perfect being he is. Joseph Albo in Sepher Ikkarim.

there is none prior and superior to him. 1:8. and the Holy Spirit. because they are so contrary to his pure and holy nature. 6:2. (Heb. holy. but he is the Fountain of holiness to his church and people. to the exclusion of the Son and Spirit. he is so in and of himself. (John 17:11) and all that has been said of the holiness of God belongs to him. the third Person in the Deity. so not of the Father. "These things saith he that is holy" (Rev. so is the Son. 16) which could not be. and the Husband of his church. and actions. he is called the "most holy". which is himself: the holiness of angels and men is not of themselves. and the holiness of saints. "holy. though he is peculiarly called the "Holy Ghost". and "having the Spirit without measure". the Son of God.18. as conscious to themselves. as before observed. yet not to the exclusion of the Father and Son. speaking after the manner of men. holy. this is expressly said of the Son. the reason of which is. that theirs will not bear to be compared with his (Job 4:17. they are sanctified in him and by him. 54:5) yea. Lord God almighty!" (Rev. are all from him. and of no other. as not of the Spirit. 24:19. Christ is not only holy in his human nature. "Holy. though its principle is the same. and as the Father is of purer eyes than to behold iniquity. which are his works. who thou art. (Josh. Besides. who is a Spirit. and even holiness itself. since he is of the same nature. God only is essentially. (John 1:14. if he was not holy. Dan. the Redeemer of his people. 30:5. (Ps. the church of Philadelphia. yea. Isa. but of God. the epithet of "holy" is commonly given to him. (1 Sam. 3:7). for which office holiness is a necessary requisite and qualification. "There is none holy as the Lord". the Holy Father. and very truly. the devil himself gives it to him. Lord God of hosts!" (Isa. and the express image of his person". to the exclusion of the rest. and so he is holy by nature and essence. as his Being is of himself. by the seraphim. And no doubt respect is had to the holiness of the three divine persons. that he cannot bear them. and is "the brightness of his Father's glory. but expresses his dislike and displeasure at them (Eph. But God is always the same holy Being. the holy angels are chargeable with folly in his sight. and under the epithet of "Holy Father". operations. As there is no doubt made of the Deity of the Father. 4:29. and immutably holy. and the Holy Spirit. 30). by considering. underivatively. and all the perfections of it. the Holy One of God" (Luke 4:34). The holiness of creatures is but a shadow of holiness. only in him. which is an emblem of the purest state of the church militant on earth. the song of Moses and of the Lamb. or holy graces that are in them. 3). The instances whereto and whereby the holiness of God is displayed. for as they are the one God. And all this will be still more clear and manifest. it is said. 15:4). and sanctified and set apart to his office as Mediator. even perfectly so. he must be the holy Son. and proceedings towards his creatures. when they said. without any variableness. or shadow of turning. it is peculiar to him. from whom he could derive or receive any holiness. of which there can be no question made: and it is as true of the Son as of the Father. and as appears by his graces. and particularly is so called along with the titles of Redeemer and Husband. saying. or his holiness is manifest in 119 . God is holy in all his works. for as the Father is the holy Father. perfectly. O Lord. and of the Holy Ones. and they cover their faces with their wings. "I know thee. Secondly. holy. celebrating the perfections of God in much the same language. He is originally holy. who was anointed with the Holy Ghost above his fellows. (Isa. he is made sanctification to them. which are peculiar to the second Person. as the Father loves righteousness and hates iniquity. more than thirty times in the prophecy of Isaiah. continually employed in the same divine service. or living creatures. while they celebrate the perfection of God's holiness. (Dan. and all the holiness. 2:2). 4:8). 9) he is eminently called "the Holy One of God".of the other. and influences. originally. holy. "Who shall not fear thee. Hannah says. since he is of the same nature with the Father and the Son. 16:10) and "the Holy One of Israel". Hence we read of the holy Elohim. by his Father. 2. In another song yet to be sung. there can be none of his holiness: our Lord addresses him under the relation of "Father". with the sins and impurities of men. 9:24) the title of holy he takes to himself when addressing the church. Nay. and by his being grieved. in her song. Prov. they partake of the same common and undivided nature. This must be understood not of one person in the Deity. and of this with the rest. in the plural number. he is the fountain of holiness to all rational creatures that partake of it. the Holy Son. the acts and exercises are variable. in comparison of the holiness of God. 6:3) and by the four beasts. so is his holiness. or divine Persons. 47:4. and glorify thy name? for thou only art holy" (Rev. 4:17). And as for the blessed Spirit.

nor tempts nor forces to it. and is attended with good works. 2a3. through the imputation of his Son's righteousness to them. is fixed as a means in it. to Christ. 36:25-27) and the promises of it serve greatly to promote it. were originally holy. as a subordinate end. and the angels that sinned are not in the estate in which they were at their creation. not only those that stood. but he has chosen them to it. Justification is an act of God's grace towards them. in love. In the works of creation. as the fall of Adam. just. and holiness of heart and life. or approve of their ungodliness. and had a law given him. The holiness of God the Father. vindicate. as the rule of his obedience. though many of them are dark and intricate. which receives the blessing of justification from the Lord. 145:17). yet holiness. and for his own glory. Angels. before the world began. by which men perceive their interest in it. forbids it. and imputed to them: nor does he justify. and nothing more powerfully excites and engages to it. magnified. yea. nor connive at it. and enjoy the comfort of it. works by love to God. but are more strongly bound and constrained to serve it. they kept not their first estate. and upright creature he was. and his people. and observed under a former attribute: wherefore the dispensations of God. 2a. that it is established. had there been anything impure or unholy in them. nor persuades to it. is his suffering sin to be in the world. which. he has not only chosen them "through" it. holy. through his blood and righteousness. not easily penetrated into. The holiness of the Son of God is to be seen in all his works. And as for man. provides abundantly for their holiness. to chastize with it the sins of God's people (Ps. and to influence the saints to be "perfecting holiness in the fear of God" (2 Cor. and which was inscribed on his heart. and good. The covenant which he has made with his Son Jesus Christ. he was made after the image. The holiness of God appears in his works of providence. yet he is neither the author nor abettor of it. the fruits of righteousness: the like may be observed with respect to other acts of the Father's grace. yet there is nothing criminal and sinful in them: the principal thing objected to the holiness of God in his providences. 2a2. 2b. 7:1). on the behalf of the chosen ones. as made by him: the elect angels continue in the holiness in which they were created. he neither commands it. both internal and external. which was an estate of purity and holiness. is the cause of this act. see (Ezek. is an operative grace. he pronounced them very good. not as an instrument. and in all his works of grace. &c. but then.them. a pure. besides. 2a1. holy. pardon. by which the holy law of God is so far from being made void. nor even the foresight of it. disapproves of it. and made honourable: nor are justified persons exempted from obedience to it. it is God. though it is by his voluntary permission. in this life. nor approves of it. so when he overlooked them. which have been instanced in. as in choosing some in Christ his Son to everlasting life. that justifies. even chastises his own people for it. dissuades from it. and it is the will of God. that those whom he chooses and appoints to salvation should partake of it. threatens to punish for it. and abode not in the truth. as adoption. and to be accounted for. in the uprightness and integrity in which they were formed (Jude 1:6. but all the verse. and in the likeness of God. Secondly. in giving himself to sanctify his church. the Jews crucifixion of Christ. and perfectly in the life to come. and though God justifies the ungodly. The holiness of Jehovah the Father is to be observed in those acts of grace which are peculiar to him. overrules it for great good. and by them (Ps. he has chosen them to be holy in part. without spot or wrinkle. some remains of which are to be found in his fallen posterity. John 8:44). or permissive will. which he would not have done. but turns it from them. for as he made all things by his Son. the sin of Joseph's brethren. in the works of creation and providence. And in this covenant is laid up a rod of correction. are not to be charged with unholiness on this account. nay. which greatly consisted in holiness. but those that fell. is the evidence of interest in it. and them from that: and faith. or come to salvation through it. and even in the Gentiles. in 120 . and make it a glorious one. but as co-efficient with him. Now though not the holiness of the creature. yet not without a righteousness provided for them. in common with his divine Father. which is visible. or the sanctification of the Spirit. even God the Father. as a means. and. in his providence. 89:29-34).

92:15. he is holy and harmless. his government would be tyranny. in implanting principles of grace and holiness in them. he has appeared to be an Holy One. and though he makes intercession for transgressors. all his administrations are in purity and righteousness. 1 Peter 1:2) in convincing them of sin. Moreover. 145:7) and remove all unrighteousness from him. The holiness of the blessed Spirit. A Body of Doctrinal Divinity Book 1—Chapter 21 Of The Justice Or Righteousness Of God. 27. as high. is a most holy faith. Adam was righteous. 9:14). and his laws. in bearing their sins. is infinite and immutable. not by their own righteousness. Ex. And. indeed. his holiness is manifest in the sanctification of the chosen of God. 11:7. all rational creatures. and affirm there is none in him (Ps. Ps. (Eph. (2 Thess. and constantly done by them. to purify them to himself a peculiar people. 97:1. Titus 2:14. his righteousness is essential and inderivative. and making satisfaction for them. and not of another. Adam lost his. as what is loved by men. and that the body of sin might be destroyed. "without which none shall see the Lord". Dan. when formed. (Rev. it may be concluded it is natural to him. commands. is visible in the formation of the human nature of Christ. God made him upright. but the "righteousness" of God is "like the great mountains". 5:25. are Holy Ones. and he was declared to be the Son of God with power. 9:9. firm. because "righteousness and judgment are the habitation of his throne" (Ps. 2:13. acknowledge it in him. but by the righteousness of Christ imputed to them. and many of the angels lost theirs. by the Spirit of holiness. and that without measure. and is natural and essential to him. and constant performance of it. saints are righteous. 1. without this attribute. it does. Show that it does belong to him. of the evil nature and just demerit of it. he will appear without sin. in separating that mass out of which it was framed in the virgin. through the sprinkling of the blood of Jesus. and the judge of the whole earth. and to holiness. 1 Peter 2:24. 2c. and not yield that pleasure and delight to the inhabitants of it. and preserving it from the taint and contagion of original sin. the reason of which is. 2). in calling them with an holy calling. the righteousness of angels and men. and has offered up himself without spot to God. 9:4) and. it is in and of himself. and stable as they.redeeming his people from all iniquity. in which men. in converting them from it. and perfecting the work of sanctification in them. with his holy gifts and graces. and is not derived from another. it is his nature and essence. which is therefore called. wholesome words. as Osiander dreamed. but not of himself. good and bad. 9:27. for though he who is Jehovah is their righteousness. doctrines according to godliness: as a Priest. the faith delivered by him to the saints. Concerning this attribute of God. and is incommunicable to a creature. and much more so 121 . angels and men. separate from sinners. and when he comes as judge of the world. 16:5. shows it to be agreeable to the nature of them. and in carrying on. and "judge the world in righteousness". Jer. Rom. The scriptures do abundantly ascribe it to him. 12:1. it is upon the foot of his sacrifice and righteousness: as a King. in sanctifying it. Rom. and the redeemed of the Lamb. 6:6) and so in the execution of all his offices. in leading them in the way of holiness. he would not be fit to be the Governor of the world. in purifying their hearts by faith. was mutable. for then they would be deified by him: the righteousness of God being his nature. and ordinances. shall not err. it is not that by which men are made righteous. in filling the human nature. (Ps. First. or righteous. yet not as he is Jehovah. it is originally and essentially in God. in which they were created. And from his love of righteousness. "the sanctification of the Spirit". indeed. that they might live unto righteousness. Thirdly. as a Prophet. through the resurrection from the dead. But God is righteous in and of himself. and through him it was offered up without spot. though fools. I shall.

as a distinct attribute. and they partake of the same undivided nature and essence: hence the Father of Christ is called by him "righteous Father". being agreeable to his nature and moral perfections. Remunerative justice. but his own grace. 2a. purity. Commutative justice lies in covenants. Righteousness in creatures. does in justice inviolably maintain. of his own grace and good will. and to his creatures. but by promising such and such things to us. 36:6). (1 John 2:1) and no doubt can be made of its being proper to the Holy Spirit. (John 17:25) and Christ. is called Jesus Christ "the righteous". 2. he is a law to himself. This is an attribute common to the three Persons in the Godhead. just. agreements. as rendering to every man according to his deeds. and when integrity and uprightness are preserved. 3:24). not by receiving anything from us. Some distinguish it into righteousness of words. is no equivalent for what they have from him. Besides. Indeed. and true. Righteousness of deeds. as such that are of a posture kind. and by not giving his glory to another. or as his work shall be. Moreover. is according to some law. and is no other than his veracity. But. 122 . or branches of righteousness. in the same manner. the other punitive justice. "the reward of the inheritance" (Col. (James 1:12) but the crown of life is not given according to any merit of it arising from enduring temptation. and governs them in justice and equity. which appears in all his works and actions. is sometimes distinguished into commutative and retributive. and they receive from him. for what he receives of another. yet it may be considered as diversified. an affection of the mind. "makes himself a debtor. since it is essential to Deity. doing such and such things. he first gives grace. and not in rewarding any supposed merits of theirs. prophecies. Some things are just. but his own gracious promise. or it is a giving that which belongs to himself. which will be considered hereafter. I shall next consider the various sorts. he having of his own grace put. Retributive justice is a distribution either of rewards or punishments. in the distribution of rewards to men. but God has no law without himself. nor his praise to graven images: and he gives to his creatures what is due to them by the laws of creation. compacts. what is each their due. the one may be called remunerative justice. for God. makes promises. what he gives. or does himself justice. or loving the Lord. but of grace. Righteousness of words lies in the fulfilment of his words. truth. rewards not their works. for their encouragement thereunto.(Ps. and dealings with one another. which is holy. for instance. or he receives from them. "Suum cuique tribuens". which is the rule of it. or a distribution of rewards. and what they give to him. because he wills them. for though it is but one in him. the rule of which is not the merits of men. Thus. or God. being his nature and essence. called. which. is of free favour and good will. for he first. And this seems to be no other than the inseparable connection between grace and glory. giving to everyone his own. commerce. and holiness of his nature. and both may be observed in God. and then rewards that grace with glory. his Son. which belong to God. with respect to creatures. the reward is not of debt. and promises. among men. this is justice. "The man that endures temptation shall receive the crown of life. "What shall I render to the Lord for all his benefits towards me?" (Ps. Justice. and is adequate so the law of God. who convinces men "of righteousness and of judgment" (John 16:8)." And his justice lies in fulfilling his promises made to such and such persons. sayings. the remunerative justice of God is sometimes represented in scripture. as it must be. and to which it is conformed. and it shall be recompensed to him again?" (Rom. and as admitting of distinctions. which the Lord has promised to them that love him". is either the rectitude. is a rule of righteousness to men. by making and doing all things for his own glory. adopting grace. his nature and will the law and rule of righteousness to him. Secondly. and disposes of them and dispenses to them. but in consequence of the promise of God graciously made to such persons. and then he is just and righteous in fulfilling them. as Austin expresses it. (Rom. 11:35). "Who hath first given to him. and which has been treated of in the preceding chapter. and righteousness of deeds. and faithfulness. God has a prior right to everything a creature has or can give. So justice is defined by Cicero. 116:12) nothing that is answerable to them. and the heavenly inheritance. Thus God gives or takes to himself what is his due. in which one gives an equivalent in money or goods. But such sort of justice cannot have place between God and men. and others he wills them because they are just.

in destroying Sodom and Gomorrah. he is obliged to inflict it. and in the judgments of God on many other nations. 1:13. God does not reward the works and godly actions of men. Nah. to the promise that is made to them for godliness. is manifest. and which being done by him. vengeance. 15. merits such punishment at the hands of God. Isa. and the proclamation which God himself has made. and the workers of it. the acts and exercises of them are according to his will. 2:14. 2b4. that the reward given or rendered. and the veracity of God in it: sin is a transgression of the law. on Pharaoh and his host. which hatred is no other than his punishment of it (Heb. 2b5. 2b. according to these.7. that "he is a consuming fire" (Heb. or vindictive justice. and in the destruction of that people. and not at all acquit the wicked. in its own nature. belongs to God. 4:8) which promise is punctually and righteously performed. 1:6) and so to inflict punishment for any other sin committed by men. 5:5. Punitive. that then all sinners must be necessarily punished. 2b3. which. But still it is to be observed. and to avert punishment. Now as his love of righteousness is natural and essential to him. the crown of righteousness is given them by the Lord. are not mens' own personal works. and would be despised: he has annexed a sanction to his law. between which. and of that which is to come". 22:12). 14:18. but hates it. 2b1. (Ex. 1:13. It is a righteous thing with God to render tribulation to them that trouble" his people. the many ways and means devised to appease angry Deity. which is death. since the perfections of God. but the works of righteousness done by Christ. who works in them both "to will and to do" of his own pleasure. the righteousness of which will be ascribed to God by the angel of the waters. in which. and. because they do not choose to embrace the doctrine of the necessity of Christ's satisfaction for sin. and others shocking. which God. "who is of purer eyes than to behold iniquity". and has appeared in casting down from heaven to hell the angels that sinned. by that wicked king. of which his obedience and righteousness consist. (Ex. in some of the instances of it. From the nature of God. From the law of God. and as will be seen in the destruction of antichrist and the antichristian states. the name of dikh. or otherwise there can be no demerit in it. that he will by no means clear the guilty. to which may be added. as has 123 . the righteousness of which was acknowledged. and eternal life. 34:6. they must give into. the works according to which God renders eternal life. and this has been exercised by him in all ages from the beginning of the world. or justice. the fears of divine vengeance falling upon them for it. otherwise his legislative power and authority is of no effect. Num. and the demerit of it. 4:8). 14. From the nature of sin. in drowning the old world. whether as a principle of grace. Moreover. in the plagues on Egypt. 9:27) in each of the captivities of the Jews. here or hereafter. but that he cannot but punish sin. 2) and in the eternal punishment and everlasting destruction of ungodly men: and this righteousness is natural and essential to God. 6. 12:29). (1 Tim. this is one. to which may be added. in a way of righteousness (2 Tim. but this the Socinians deny. so must hatred of sin be. punitive justice. as a righteous Judge. as a lawgiver. are reckoned to them. nor is it any objection to all this. is done in faith. Besides. or vindictive justice. and therefore he is "not unrighteous to forget their work and labour of love". which springs from love. Ps. some absurd. the heathens give to deity. (Rev. everlasting punishment and destruction. 19:1. as their Head and Representative. or godly persons have "the promise of the life that now is. among other essential perfections of his. as meritorious in themselves. and his veracity obliges him to inflict it. is essential to God. or that he not only will not let sin go unpunished. cannot bear it. and with a view to his glory (Heb. the sanction of it. Now if sin of itself. But that punitive. on their account. 16:5.2:5-7. though natural to him. see (Rom. (2 Thess. there is no proportion. if granted. 10. eternal death. in each of the periods of time. or as practised under the influence of grace. is owing. Acts 28:4). 6:10). and by all his people. but as they are the fruits of his own grace. 1:3). 2b2. From the light of nature: hence the accusations of the natural conscience in men for sins committed. From the word of God. 6). cannot but punish.

let this cup pass me" (Matthew 26:39). or otherwise. ere long. and inflict the whole of punishment on him. he stops and asks this question. when it is their ways that are unequal. no pardon nor salvation. and not to another. be turned. for "the Lord is righteous in all his ways" (Ps. and the saints. "God forbid!" Election is neither an act of justice nor of injustice. or this was not necessary? and. the tables will. who does what he will with his own. is. or in his Surety. the Surety of his people. it may be strongly concluded. I shall next consider the displays of the righteousness of God in his works. 3b. 3. "Father. (Ezek. but as a father. 12:1. when the justice of God will shine in all its glory. 3a. but is either punished in the sinner himself. The reason why some are not punished in themselves. There is a future state. yet they are like beasts that are fattened for the slaughter. who have now their evil things. that he should not spare him. orders and disposes of all things in judgment. when all things will be set to rights. so none could be. 15:3. and not to their detriment and injury. if sin could have been let go unpunished. their judgment may seem to linger. though it may not so apparently take place now. where is his wisdom in being at such an expense as the blood and life of his Son. who will do right". it would argue injustice. Jer. As for the afflictions of God's people. as there is no remission. but of the sovereign will and pleasure of God. 11:32). 18:29) nor is it any sufficient objection to the righteousness of God in his providences. but for their good. While the apostle is treating on this sublime subject. these are not punishments for sins. nor is he chargeable with any unrighteousness in any of his ways and works: men may wrongly charge him. were they indeed punishments for sin. (Rev. and though he does according to his sovereign will and pleasure in heaven and in earth. without any imputation of injustice: if he may give grace and glory to whom he will. Thirdly. it will be readily allowed. In short. and not his. to indulge with communion with himself now. and the preterition of others. God is righteous in all his ways and works and acts of grace. and vindicate his justice in them. in the predestination of men. And as for the prosperity of the wicked. 145:17). if he could not have punished sin. but awake the sword of justice against him. and companions. without such a charge. Hence. 2b6. "he is the Judge of all the earth. and even affirmed. that punitive justice is essential to God. But. consistent with the justice of God. sudden destruction will come upon them. and they have not been able to reconcile them to the justice of God (see Ps. and their damnation to slumber. if it be possible. 2). they are chastened by the Lord. that no sin goes unpunished.been instanced in his omnipotence and mercy. their afflictions come not from God as a judge. "Is there unrighteousness with God?" and answers it with the utmost abhorrence and detestation. in giving Christ for them. it can be none in God to choose whom he pleases to bestow his favours on. then he may determine to give it without any. it will hereafter. because Christ has made satisfaction for their sins. without satisfaction to that: could it have been in another way. and again in themselves: but so it is not. when all this might have been without it? but without shedding of blood. Gen. the prayer of Christ would have brought it out. "the way of the Lord is not equal". and not from his justice. gives it to one. and the salvation of his people obtained without it? and where is the love of God to men. will be comforted. "Just and true are his ways". as the house of Israel did. Besides. and they have more than heart can wish. indeed. for it would be unjust to punish twice for the same sins. who have now their good things. In his ways and works of providence: he governs the world in righteousness. by bearing the punishment due unto them. 18:25) and does do it. for their remission and salvation. and wicked men are frequently in very prosperous circumstances: these things have been stumbling and puzzling to good men. and say. so much magnified. and the wicked. but chastisements of them. the choice of some. If it is no injustice in men to choose their own favourites. 73:4-13. but his love. will be tormented: justice. though their eyes stand out with fatness. and the judgments of God will be manifest. confidants. From sin being punished in Christ. once in their Surety. yet he acts according to the strictest rules of justice and equity. that they might not be condemned with the world (1 Cor. due to the sins of those for whom he suffered. that good men are often afflicted. friends. where is the goodness of God to his own Son. and to dwell with him to all eternity: if it was no injustice to 124 . but they do not.

p. l. and save them. 20:5). even the righteousness of his own Son. for children to be punished for the sins of their parents. and her converts. yet not without a perfect righteousness. as now he fell they share in the miseries of it? and since they sinned in him. 3:26). and in it "mercy and truth meet together. lays down a ransom price for fifty of them. for though God justifies the ungodly. The justice of God shines brightly in redemption by Christ. Nor can the imputation of Adam's sin to all his posterity. no injustice is done to them that are not redeemed. through Christ and his righteousness. and what else is sin against God? (Ex. are redeemed in righteousness". yet not without a satisfaction made to his justice. without showing mercy to one individual of them. with and in whom they were to stand and fall. Suppose one hundred slaves in Algiers. by the righteousness of Christ. and a man out of his great generosity. and justification by it. "Zion. yet through the blood of Christ shed for it. 5. and who so fit for this as their natural head and common parent. God made man upright. he voluntarily broke it: God constituted the first man the federal head and representative of all his posterity. and upon the ground of the shedding of that blood. It is not reckoned unjust. since had he stood they would have partook of the benefits of it. it can be no act of injustice to redeem and save some. is expressive. it can be no injustice in him to choose some of the race of men. does he. 8. and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness". c. 1. he truly and really exists: this is what every worshipper of him must believe 125 . de Servatore. c. or attribute. Though God forgives sin. 16. and the justifier of him which believes in Jesus" (Rom. Theolog. in fine. by this act of distinguished goodness and generosity. and righteousness and peace kiss each other": and though it is not for all men. for if God could in justice have condemned all. 25. by his disobedience. though it is according to the riches of his grace. whatever is said of creatures. A Body of Doctrinal Divinity Book 1—Chapter 22 Of The Veracity Of God. [3] Socin. and every man a liar". and particularly treason. in Psalm cix. it can be no unrighteous thing to reckon it to them. among men. 1a. and what injustice could be in that. as is eternal glory and happiness. he appears to be "just. tom. in the imputation of which.choose some of the angels. he is true and truth itself. called elect angels. (Rom. such as is adequate to the demands of his righteous law. 521. 3:4) this must be affirmed of him. when he could have condemned them all. ENDNOTES: [1] De Finibus. and pass by others. do any injustice to the others? or can they righteously complain of him for not ransoming them? In the justification of men. The apostle says. be accounted an unrighteous action. God is true in and of himself: this epithet. par. and even to condemn all that sinned. c. (1 John 1:9) and so it is both an act of grace and of justice. 1. he made himself a sinner: God gave him a righteous law. "ejusqque attributis". Praelection. a full price is paid for the redemption of them. being the free gift of God. [2] Enarrat. "Let God be true. and abilities to keep it. Crellius de Deo. and pass by others. Of the reality of his being. 1. the justice of God is very conspicuous. or that they should be made and constituted sinners. God "is faithful and just to forgive us our sins.

that he should lie. to enter upon his prophetic office. yea. so he is truth. (Deut. 126 . real. he is not only omnipotent. &c. 7). 82:1. and that he will have all men to be saved. or the sense is. (John 14:6) and the Spirit is likewise so called (1 John 5:6). Titus 1. And the latter respects the will of God to save some of all sorts. 39:6) but the existence of God is true. in comparison of his. eternal. since thereunto a condition is either openly annexed or secretly understood. 18:7-10) but the faithfulness of God. It is most pure and perfect in him. if in him. 6. ways. and no unrighteousness is in him. is really in him. 6:18) this frees him from all deception. he is righteous.--This attribute of truth removes from the divine nature everything imperfect and sinful: it is opposed to unrighteousness. Heb. upon their obedience. 3:7. "I AM that I AM". But the Lord is God in a true and proper sense. fallacious. "O Lord. and immutability of his essence. would be to act contrary to his nature. Of the truth of his Deity. when God is spoken of in his persons. not by nature. thou hast deceived me. 1 Sam. their return from it. as men do. and living in it. are his declarations chargeable with anything of that kind. in his promises. he is really. the Strength of "Israel will not" lie. and I was persuaded". rather in appearance than in reality. 1c. Jer. and not all. (Jer. says. as that he has no pleasure in the death of him that dies. (Ex. eternity. he is God that "cannot" lie. he is not only good and gracious.(Heb. gods only by name. 20:7) but this must be understood either as a misapprehension and mistake of the prophet. therefore I am not deceived: though rather the words may be rendered. 6:10. and who. indeed. he could not be true. 15:3. he is truth itself. what others only appear to be. who is also the true God and eternal life. if I am deceived. nor is it any objection to the veracity of God. and substantial. as Moses was to Pharaoh. hence "true" and "faithful" are joined together. 6. so he is often called. and works. it is his very nature and essence. omniscient. 1d2. he is the true and the living God. when what he has promised or threatened is not done. 32:4) and has the epithet of just or holy along with it. but as that cannot be. but "God the truth". it removes all unfaithfulness from God. and is. and particularly Gentiles as well as Jews. is not true. of which there have been many: but the true God is but one. what seems to be. 1d. 10:10. or image. but he is truly so: what is falsely claimed by others. This title includes the truth and reality of all his perfections. Creatures have but a shadow of being. is the one true and living God (1 John 5:20. God has deceived me. 1b. he is not a man. 11:6). which. and immutable. 15:3. This may be predicated of each Person in the Godhead. see (Jer. (John 17:3) though not to the exclusion of the Son. which he cannot do. or are feigned so by others. 1:9) in opposition to fictitious deities. even to deny himself. and no unholiness in him. or wrongly given to them. but the captivity of the Jews. 1 Thess. (Num. which denotes the truth. 2:4) since the former respects not eternal death. as in him is light. he is not only called the God of truth. What seems to be. "thou hast persuaded me. he can neither deceive nor be deceived. 7). and insincere. judges. and no darkness at all. is wisdom. To be false. 32:4) and so Christ asserts himself to be the "truth". who is truth. 15:29.2. and as kings. is true. with the Father and the Son. (Rev. and I was deceived". it is even "impossible" that he should. let the following things be observed: 1d1. and to proceed on in the execution of it. gods by office under God. and in distinction from such who are called gods in a figurative and metaphorical sense. will be distinctly considered hereafter. to their own land. omnipresent. 16:7. (2 Chron. holy and just. is good. is holy. and no evil in him. the Father is the only true God. hypocrisy. (Deut. and no folly nor weakness in him. who either have reigned themselves such. (Ezek. Jeremiah. when the sayings or words of God are spoken of. hence he has the name Jehovah. and is not. 18:32. "Every man walks in a vain show". In short. 1 Tim. That it is essential to him. and civil magistrates be. of every rank and condition in life. and dissimulation. and no falsehood in him. not the least mixture nor appearance of it. nor of the holy Spirit. Nor on the supposition of his decree to save some men. 23:19. Ps. Concerning the veracity of God. 19:2) it removes from him all imputation of lying and falsehood. 7:1. Moreover this attribute clears God of the charge of insincerity. but he is truly so. or any shadow of it: it strongly expresses the faithfulness of God. (Ps.

117:2). 14. as in God. and by a sort of legerdemain. from the works of his hands. and real things. and evangelical truth. moon. and the glory of them". 89:5. and by Christ and his apostles: these were real things. which contains all truth in it. and stars we behold. as those done by antichrist. whereby he deceives them that dwell on the earth. God is true in his works. (2 John 1:3) and the Spirit of truth is really breathed. 2b1. it is first in him. his essence. as it is in Jesus.1d3. and showed unto them (Rom. The works of creation. It is immutable and invariable. and Christ is his own proper Son. they truly exist. since that is. as paternity. 15). 2b2. Moral truth. by which men know. might not be true yesterday. as those done by the hands of Moses. and deceitful. the decrees of God within himself. 2:9. 1:18-20. which are "faithfulness" and "truth". 10) but the wonderful works of God are true. and all truth is originally from him. and besides. but in God is always the same: creatures are mutable. or by office. Isa. and all that are in them. External works. and his veracity is displayed in them. by which he would have imposed on Christ. natural and rational truth. then more clearly. truly made. the father of lies. but God is the same. 119:160). though sadly depraved. (Acts 15:18) as also his "word is true from the beginning". fallacious. in some measure. these are not of men. and without 127 . is eternal. as magistrates are called the children of the most High. Internal acts within himself. called the truth of God made manifest in men. and disposes of all things according to truth and righteousness. 2a. 2b. It is first. yesterday. true and faithful. are real. but could not. 1d5. Spiritual truth. and original in him. and therefore are called "lying wonders". as the works of creation. some relative to himself. the deep things of God. and are so known by us. and spiration. in the sight of men. and his truth will be to all generations. and not in name only. what is truth now. both in making and in continuing them. but of God. 2 Thess. by which God governs the world. but not so with God. to the divine persons. 38:19). All untruth is from Satan. in Egypt. not in a figurative sense. 13:13. the thoughts of his heart. truth in the inward parts. as he is the first cause. and distinction from each other. providence. as veracity is his nature. their modes of subsisting. at first more obscurely. it is chief. 1d4. (Rev. 25). and proceeds from the Father and the Son. those in an ordinary way. and such as are of an extraordinary kind. feigned things. and the several doctrines of it. The heavens above us. What is true with us today. which are the secret actings and workings of his mind. An attribute on account of which he is greatly to be praised and celebrated (Ps. which are all true. Satan pretended to show to Christ "all the kingdoms of the world. in whose eternal mind all things stand in one view. which are true and real things: the Father is truly and properly the Father of Christ. as they imagine. and not imaginary. chief. or the true grace of God. and grace. a "deceptio visus". which have no truth in them. or from eternity. (Matthew 4:8) but this was a false and delusive representation. The works of providence. and his veracity among the rest. 100:5. the heavens and the earth. which are both his handy work. and these are either internal or external. who leads into all truth. as he himself. and from the Spirit. which is clear and self-evident to the mind: as the Being of God. filiation. and will not be true tomorrow. his eternal power and Godhead. 2. because things are in a succession with us. and truly performed (Isa. his counsels of old. the sun. but all truth is from the God of truth. Truth. even for ever (Ps. the difference between moral good and moral evil (Rom. it must be eternal. when those done by the magicians were only in show. as it is perfect in him. 2:14. but the Son of the Father "in truth" and love. and in which the veracity of God appears. was always truth with him in his eternal mind. or from eternity (Ps. it has its gradations and increase. truth does not always appear in the same light to men. and for ever. in which the invisible perfections of his nature are displayed and discerned. the word of truth. for "known to him are all his works from the beginning". in appearance. 25:1). or all his works are true. and the earth on which we live. (John 15:26) others are relative to creatures. to answer some wise ends and purposes in the world. as his nature is. today.

he is. promises. "not as the word of man. (1 Thess. the truth of which the apostle confirms by the various senses of seeing. King of kings. 1:13) and all the doctrines of it. as it were. though it does not yet appear what they shall be. 2:13) an unfaithful God would be no God at all. and was God. even the whole of them. God is true in his written word. and his incarnation. as silver tried in a furnace of earth. but not like what is in God. 10:21) they are given by inspiration from God. faithfully performed. (Dan. &c. which are "pure words. it is infinite. being naturally led to it. who was really made flesh. and whose human nature is the true tabernacle God pitched. the true God and eternal life. who is the God of truth. as are all his judgments he executes by the sword. the veracity of God is the foundation of his faithfulness. and they are often put one for the other. and threatenings contained in his word. yea. his Son. pardon by his blood. atonement by the sacrifice of himself. (2 Tim. (Rom. and signify the same thing. Justification by his righteousness is really imputed to his people. 33. the scriptures are the scriptures of truth. 24. had a true and real existence with him. it is "great". 12:6). (Eph. and ceremonial. which he really and truly offered up to God. and his faithfulness is a branch of that. pestilence. and not outward. to be unfaithful. 2:13) the legal part of them is truth. solid. it is a most glorious perfection of his nature. and not a typical one. A Body of Doctrinal Divinity Book 1—Chapter 23 Of The Faithfulness Of God. the apostle speaks of the "truth in the law". which is not merely typical. and handling (1 John 1:1). firm. and substantial. but as in truth the word of God". (Ps. real. and dwelt among men. from whence he is denominated the "faithful God" (Deut. and in good men. (Job 4:18) his faithfulness is invariably the same. the true light. famine. and Lord of lords. it is established in the heavens. but real. it has never failed in anyone instance. The works of grace done by him. made in Christ. 19:9). 7:9). his choice of persons to eternal life. are the breath of God. and sanctification by the Spirit. and will continue to all generations. 89:8). who was "in the beginning with God". the true prophet raised up and sent of God. And the truth and veracity of God appears in the fulfilment of the predictions. 2b3. and without which he would not be God. clothed and covered with it. known by men. which is the new man. created in righteousness and true holiness. 3:23) it relies to all persons and things God has any concern with.deceit. his acts of grace. nor feigned and hypocritical: and adoption. Josh. he is true in his person and natures. which is the same with his faithfulness. by which the saints are now really the sons of God. "Great is thy faithfulness". the mission of Christ into the world. There is faithfulness in the holy angels. God is true in his words. the covenant of grace. but of the order of Melchizedek. which we shall particularly treat of in the next chapter. and therefore he puts no trust in them. which stands sure. who took unto him a true body and a reasonable soul. and to which the Spirit bears a true and real witness. would be to act contrary to his nature. is true. And the gospel part of them is eminently the word of truth. and therefore to be received. typical. and which is unto an inheritance. the foundation of God. and real. not of the order of Aaron. purified seven times" (Ps. the true priest. the true Mediator between God and men. and by which they truly become righteous. as Moses. as by the blood of slain beasts. really and truly God. and there is none in any creature like unto it (Ps. both in eternity and time. and not in a putative and imaginary sense. 89:2. 119:90. that lightens men in every sense. in his essential Word. like himself. the true and only Potentate. Faithfulness is an attribute that belongs to God. "The judgments of the Lord are true and righteous altogether" (Ps. 2:20) there is not a precept in it but what is true and right. to deny himself. and not man: true in his offices he bears. (Lam. full of blessings and promises. It is essential to him. hearing. 3. nor never will. 128 . it is all around him.

(Jer. be of the seed of Abraham. and believed he should have. use. and "reserved" for them "the appointed weeks of the harvest". wherein will dwell righteousness (2 Peter 3:7-13). the sun. 2a. And from all this it may be strongly concluded. 11. 13. (Ps. 24) for the faithfulness of God chiefly lies in the performance of his word. (Isa. 7:14 9:1. 31:35. 16). and converse much in Galilee. 22. Phil. and sudden inundations. Mic. 23. and covenant God and Father of his people. shall be most certainly done. "while the earth remaineth. 2 Sam. both of what he has said of him. indeed. 18-23. as that he would help him. and shall he not make it good?" Verily he will (Num. in all ages and nations. as that he should be born of a woman. and provided for by him. 25:9 35:4. Isa. 1 Cor. God has set the rainbow in the cloud. 15:3). and depend upon him for all mercies promised. 1. or station. 3:15. (Ps. 2. and seasons of the year. which is yet to be fulfilled. 2:9. spring from the tribe of Judah. Likewise that the revolutions of the time. in that their land required rain only at two seasons of the year. and shall he not do it? or hath he spoken. 53:10. yet he would raise him from the dead. 29. 7:12. 36) and which has been accomplished in the numerous conversions both among Jews and Gentiles. 5:24. Ps. 6. the faithfulness of God is displayed in Christ as in a mirror. (Gen. 89:4. 8:22) and so it has always been. he should be glorified at his right hand. Christ having done his work. In the performance of what he has said with respect to the world in general. should keep their constant course. 1 Thess. and which they always had. and the salvation of men by him. Remarkable was the faithfulness of God to the Jewish nation. 145:15. Isa. and for a token and confirmation of it. 54:9). and summer and winter. in the 129 . and he gives them their meat in due season. and of what he has said to him: and. in one part of the world or another. 4:13-16. "both the former and the latter. 9. both temporal and spiritual. Also that the ordinances of heaven. exactly and punctually. shall not cease". (Ps. 36:5. (1 Peter 4:19. arise out of the family of David. and which help and strength Christ expected. and still is. (Gen. and now they have kept their course. (Acts 14:17. to whom they may safely commit themselves. 9:11-16. 2:5. and die. and God has been faithful to it. 53:1-12. Luke 1:68-72. moon. though the earth has been sometimes threatened with destruction by violent storms. 11:14. 16:10. and had it. 33:25). giving rain from heaven and fruitful seasons. but always continue in their being. he has not left himself without a witness to his faithfulness. the end and consummation of all things in it. as it once was. 49:8) and that though he should die. and work out the salvation of his people. but he is the "faithful Creator". and stars. as the judgment of it. John 17:4. 15:4) and that when he had done his work. Hosea 6:2. the conflagration of it. which is certain. for "hath he said. and strengthen him. be born of a virgin at Bethlehem. whose eyes all of them wait upon him. In the performance of what he said to Christ. or promised him. for almost six thousand years. 5:2. and the making new heavens and a new earth. 49:6) all which has been fully accomplished (Matthew 1:1. 15) and whereas God has given reason to expect that his creatures should be preserved in their being. 10) and that he should see his seed have a numerous offspring. according to the different climates. as. and influence. And it appears.23:14) otherwise there would be no firm foundation for trust and confidence in him. The faithfulness of God appears in the fulfilment of what he has said with respect to Christ. Ps. 36. and now four thousand years are gone since the covenant was made. and cold and heat. 8. Luke 1:45). in his human nature. see (Gen. as man and mediator. Isa. and God promised it to them. 22:1-31. and so filling the hearts of his creatures with food and gladness. in his season". see (Jer. 22:18. and it was fulfilled. 49:10. being delivered unto death for the sins of his people. and have done their office. 23:19. in the great work of redemption and salvation. and which was accordingly done. that whatsoever God has said concerning the world. In the performance of what he has said of him. with respect to all that is spoken by him. which should continue to the end of the world. seedtime and harvest. shall not depart. 89:21. Isa. that. that it shall never more be destroyed by a flood. and raised again for their justification. and be laid in the grave and buried. (Ps. 5:23. 5. pleaded this promise. and accordingly. though sometimes so ungrateful as not to fear him who gave them rain. 2b. with the necessaries of life. see Deut. 2) and suffer. 1 Cor. First. 110:1. Secondly. 50:7. and that on the third day. and day and night. 6.

and has offered himself. and grace for grace" (John 1:16). (Heb. saying. 20:5. is common to each person in the Godhead. "Behold. but Christ as a Son over his own house. and become the author of. and he is come. office. he has deposited it with him. was entrusted with Christ. in order to do this work. (1 John 5:11. Christ has appeared to be faithful in the exercise of his offices. and to clear off all their scores. 2c2. 40:6-8) and he is accordingly become the fulfilling "end of the law for righteousness to all that believe". (Zech. In short. and to all his saints. and does give it to all his sheep. both its precepts and its penalty. John 17:2. in all ages and generations. not one is lost (Heb. have "all received of his fulness. 5:9. In the performance of his engagements: he engaged to be the Surety of his people. 7. as well as in making "reconciliation for the sins of the people". faithfulness. so that he that has seen the Son has seen the Father. and to take care of all their affairs and concerns for time and eternity.first ages of Christianity. and shines resplendently in the Son of God. even everyone of them. even of his justice and holiness. John 10:14). as Prophet. Moses was faithful in the house of God. as one who had engaged to work out their redemption and salvation. the Father hath "given all things into his hand". I come". and has done it. and he has a power to give it to as many as the Father has given him. power. to take the whole care and oversight of it. 11:4. to communicate it to them. (John 3:35) all the persons of his elect to be kept. in which the faithfulness of God in his promises. 2c. (1 Tim. "A fountain of gardens. 9:12)he engaged to come into the world. Eternal life and happiness is in his hands. 1:15) he engaged to come and fulfil the law. which is very large and great. 7:22) he engaged to be the Saviour and Redeemer of them. a well of living waters. Priest. as well as of his wisdom. whom Christ will present to his Father. and which he has now obtained. the glory of all the divine perfections. without spot to God. and accordingly. The glory of God is great in the salvation of men. 10:4. and the fulness of the Gentiles be brought in. 2c3. (Heb. and so privy to his whole mind and will. in every period of time. 9:14. or glass. This. and judgment made of the faithfulness of God. and to become a sacrifice for sin. and he has been faithful "in things pertaining to God". who has been "faithful to him that appointed him" to his office as Mediator. 3:2-6) and whose faithfulness may be observed. as they need it. and this of faithfulness among the rest. Ps. and he has been faithful to do it. and saved by him. grace. and works of Christ. Isa. the chief of sinners. Christ is entrusted with a fulness of grace. (Ps. so that none of them shall ever perish. that it should dwell in him for their use. by lying in the bosom of his Father. is abundantly displayed. he engaged to feed the flock of God. and by being their Surety. to supply the wants of his people. for which he was abundantly qualified. who has every perfection the Father has. and of Christ in his engagements. soul and body. which he has done to the uttermost farthing. more or less. (Rom. 85:10). as a servant. 2:17. and has done this for sinners. he is become the Surety of the better testament. that is. and he is faithful in the use of that power. 2:13). and blotted out the handwriting of ordinances against them. and that he came into the world. The faithfulness of God is displayed in the person. 40:11. ceremonial sacrifices being insufficient. and whereby sin has been fully expiated and put away. Heb. by what appears in his Son. ever since. and in doing the one he has taken care of the other. to stand in their place and stead. to do and suffer for them what should be required. and streams from Lebanon". as all other divine perfections. is a "faithful saying". as concerned in the salvation of men. and he does feed his flock like a shepherd. which is to be seen in Christ as in a mirror. and an estimate may in some measure be taken. The faithfulness of Christ is seen in his discharge of the trust reposed in him. and which have continued. all that he heard of the 130 . which he has faithfully declared. and so they are and shall be. "Lo. he is often spoken of as such in the Old Testament. become responsible for them. and say. he has been to all his churches. and has shown himself to be the good and faithful one. "the brightness of his Father's glory". by laying down his life for the sheep. preserved. (Heb. the same perfections being in the one as in the other. 2c1. and King: in the exercise of his prophetical office. 26. it has been his Father's pleasure. (Song 4:15) saints both of the Old and New Testament. 10:510) he engaged to pay off the debts of his people. and the children which God hath given me". "a Sacrifice of a sweet smelling savour". I. and will still more manifestly appear when the nation of the Jews shall be born at once. 10:28) yea. and mercy (Heb.

Mark 16:20) yea. in all things. The faithfulness of Christ may be observed in his concern with the covenant of grace. Which leads on to consider. 1:20. The faithfulness of God in the performance of what he has said in the covenant. 3:1. 15:3. and comforted them with his presence. but come and see them. 3. 17:8) and therefore is justly entitled to be called the Amen. 33) that he would be with them in the administration of his word and ordinances. in that he has offered up himself to make atonement for the sins of his people. over which he is a priest (Heb. he has promised his presence with his ministers and churches to the end of the world. the covenant was made with him as the Head and Representative of his people. he sought not his own glory. and that he would give to his posterity the land of Canaan: the former part of which was verified in the Ishmaelites. God made a covenant with Noah. and which was not only verified in his immediate disciples. and broke the covenant. like Adam. righteousness being the girdle of his loins. 3:14). and they are Yea and Amen in him. God is denominated "faithful". that he would make him the father of many nations. 24. and filled them with joy at the sight of him. all the words and doctrines he gave him. after his resurrection. he made known to his disciples. in case of disobedience.2. confirming the word by signs following. from his keeping covenant and mercy with them. with respect to his special people. as it is in God. and threatening with death. and faithful Witness (Rev. Heb. Eph 3:6). as he did. without sin. and faithfully dispensed by him. promising that he would no more destroy the world by a flood. all whose administrations in it are just and true. as the head and representative of his posterity. 2c4. "they. unto salvation" (John 14:2. But God was faithful to it. And in the exercise of his kingly office. and "to them that look for him. may be learnt somewhat more of the attribute of faithfulness. and faithful Witness of them. since in righteousness he doth judge and make war" (Rev. "the blood of the everlasting covenant": and it is in and through him that believers come to have an interest in the promises. and deprived him of his happiness. (Matthew 18:20 28:20) and he makes his word good. 89:3. as before observed. a right unto them. and accordingly did go forth and work with them. that where he is they may be also. 20. and others. and the promises of it. and stands fast with him. 2 Cor. 13:20. which were of 131 . 3. but the glory of him that sent him. and with great propriety is he called "faithful and true. Rev. 20:20) that they should receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. (Acts 1:4. and to whom only they could be given. The faithfulness of Christ is manifest in the fulfilment of his promises. and rightly bears the character of a faithful high priest. even Jesus Christ the righteous. and therefore must be true and faithful. the promises were made to him. and therefore were bid to wait at Jerusalem for it. 9:28). but in his saints in all ages. have transgressed the covenant" (Hosea 6:7). of their being made. and that even "where two or three are gathered together in his name. in a very large and extraordinary manner. and takes perfect care. that he would not leave them comfortless. Midianites. he comes and takes them to himself. 3:14. he has been faithful in: he made a covenant with Adam. 15:15. 9:14. and as the Advocate for them. 1 John 2:1). which the experience of his ministers and people in all ages confirms: he has promised also to come again. and faithfulness the girdle of his reins. He made a covenant with Abraham.Father. 7:16-18. 19:11. whom. of the house of God. Isa. 11:5). faithful. Israelites. and pronounced the sentence of death on him and his. as man. and the promises of it. he was the Amen. and he has faithfully kept it. when they have served their generation according to the will of God. and that kings should spring from him. and take his disciples and faithful followers to himself. Heb. In the exercise of his priestly office. he will be in the midst of them". by whose blood the blessings and promises of it are ratified and confirmed. and where it was bestowed upon them. and no unrighteousness or unfaithfulness in him. 2c5. and true. promising a continuance of happiness to him and his. in which he is faithful to him that appointed him. (Matthew 28:19. 10:21. (John 14:18. 2:17. 2:4. 7:9) every covenant God has made with man. which he made to his disciples. provided he remained in his state of innocence. as. Thirdly. on the day of Pentecost. in doing which. and therefore called. and to be partakers of them. And now by the faithfulness of Christ thus manifestly displayed. and all the creatures. with their kings. (Deut. (Ps. all the blessings of it are lodged with him. (John 1:18. by death. who only actually existed when they were made. Edomites. Adam was unfaithful. will he appear a second time.

37:3) not all of them with dainties and delicious food. nor do their doubts. God has not promised his people security from outward afflictions. but he has promised them better riches. for though they and others may think it would be better for them if they had a greater affluence of the things of this life. he destroyed them from it. (Jer. as he does. natural. (Gen. and for evermore. which God has graciously made to his people. (1 Cor. which God has made in Christ with all his elect. and it is their common case. preserve and keep them by his power. and secure them. support them under them. continued to them their blessings. his displeasure at them. and the effectual calling. that he has a special love and affection for them. and which he will never break. since his people are described as a poor and afflicted people. "that they that seek the Lord shall not want any good thing". and being angry with them. and for their good: it signifies. 33:16) and this is sufficient to support and confirm his faithfulness: nor is the poverty of some of God's people any objection to it. many are the afflictions of the righteous. but with food convenient for them. 3a. and righteousness. as sometimes riches are: he has bid his people "trust in the Lord. and he dispossessed them of them. God is with them. (Ps. as he threatened. yet it is good. according to his promise. "They shall be my people. 32:38) and which appears in their election. and by it. which they held long by the tenure of their obedience. since he has nowhere promised them the riches of this world. according to his engagements. and they want not any. and better than the best of men deserve. He has said. that God. through faith unto salvation. of things belonging to it. either for their temporal good. But the grand and principal covenant. with respect to temporal things (Ps. they are not of them that draw back unto perdition: in a word. and deliver out of them in due time: all which is faithfully performed by him. and has promised. 4:17) and also that he will be with them in them. and may expect it. and the principal of these is. 21:43. their all in all. He made a covenant at Sinai. and they cannot. and which will never be removed. (1 Tim. but God thinks otherwise. as every creature of God is good. sees is good for them. 10:13). is the covenant of grace. however. and these he gives to them. and which are faithfully performed by him. durable riches. their portion in life. (Ps. but when they broke the covenant. he does not depart from them. and though they fall into temptation. as well as "of that which is to come". and what are appointed for them. he has assured them. 3b. their "bread shall be given them". it is what they are appointed to. nor withdraw his gracious presence from them totally and finally: it assures them of his protection. and will continue it. 34:10) they shall have that which is good. his hiding his face from them for a time. with all the people of Israel. and do good". since these are not contrary to it. and. 41:10. the exercise and increase of grace and holiness. guard them. for "godliness" and godly men have "the promise of the life that now is". see a testimony from David's experience of the faithfulness of God. in his infinite wisdom. Josh. at death. for though they may fall into sin. or for their spiritual good. and complaints disprove it. and fears. and they know it. and promises them unto them. but they were not steadfast in his covenant. (Isa. 6. 4:8) these their heavenly Father knows they have need of. nor long. which is saying. and has given them no reason to expect them. Others are of a spiritual nature. any objection to the perpetuity of his love. but rather the fruits of it. they "shall be fed". this promise is expressive of their enjoyment of God here. 37:25). and he is their shield. as he does: nor are his chastisements of them. and knows it would be to their hurt. 17:5. but then God has promised that they shall work for their good. redemption. by Joshua. 49:14-16) which are generally owing to their ignorance and unbelief. and therefore provides them for them. 23:16). (2 Cor. and sure. that he will be all around them. 132 . they are kept from a final and total falling away. and I will be their God". and religious. as Jacob's afflictions worked for his. but ever be inviolably kept. and which they have. good food and good raiment. and for ever. and their: "waters shall be sure". by putting the people of Israel in possession of Canaan. though it may be but mean. yet they are delivered out of it. and always for their eternal good. and exceeding great reward. but rather has suggested to them that they may look for them. Some of a temporal nature.him: and the latter part. and is ordered in all things. (Isa. civil. and which is the sum of the covenant. yet they rise again by his grace. he is never far from them. and there are promises of various sorts. that they shall have his gracious presence with them. the riches of grace and glory.

a sufficiency of it. which he does in regeneration. 31:33. are faithfully and truly performed in all his people (see Jer. and will most certainly perform it. according to which God in providence proceeds. "Blessed is the man that endureth temptation. a condition is either openly expressed. who are a standing proof of God's faithfulness in this respect. in many promises and threatenings. (James 1:12). 26:1-46. as well as his promises. guilt. 3c. and take away the heart of stone. and may be depended upon. and which their hope of mercy. when he removes the hardness of the heart. and cleanse them from all their sins. fully confirm. Nor is it any objection to the faithfulness of God in fulfilling his threatenings. that in the day he eat of the forbidden fruit. "This is the promise that he has promised us.There are many particular spiritual promises made to the people of God. he shall receive the crown of life. even eternal life". they may be assured of it. and sore judgments. until he heard that the seed of the woman should bruise the serpent's head. and perform every duty. and brought it upon the world of the ungodly. and the sentence of death passed on him. death began at once to work in him. and as surely to be depended on. All which promises.34. The faithfulness of God appears in fulfilling his threatenings. for as it is most true. as soon as he had sinned. and the mercy shown them upon their repentance. yet he was faithful to his word. if they walked not in his ways. and broke his statutes. and remain to this day. so it is equally as true. or. (1 John 2:25) and this is an ancient one. and so the veracity and faithfulness of God is sufficiently secured. and is baptized. a secret proviso made. and damnation to all unbelieving and impenitent sinners. and give an heart of flesh. and deprivation of the divine presence. and destroyed them all. and gives evangelical repentance unto life. shall be damned" (Mark 16:16). not only give knowledge of them. by way of eminency. that Nineveh was spared. which is to be understood of justifying grace. as. 4. for when he is tried. and faithful to his own promise. and he is just in doing it. 5:12). and all his posterity in him. that in forty days it should be overthrown. but persevere in faith and holiness to the end. and. and expect it. that "he that believeth not. according to the divine threatening (Rom. since he has promised it. but both a disposition and grace to observe them. God threatened the inhabitants of the old world with a flood to destroy them. that he will put his laws in them. the eternal happiness of the saints in another world: the apostle speaks of the promise of this. that "cannot lie". and supply all their need out of the fulness in Christ. (1 John 1:9) that he will give them new hearts and new spirits. (Titus 1:2) who is faithful and true. A Body of Doctrinal Divinity Book 1—Chapter 24 133 . God threatened the people of Israel with captivity. indeed. and by God. 28:1-68) all which grievous threatenings. and terror of conscience. for their impiety and wickedness. as he does. however. wherefore. Fourthly. or secretly understood. nor had he any reason to expect any other. he should surely die. 36:25-27). his soul was seized directly with a spiritual or moral death. "as the promise". and which are made good by him. of which see (Lev. that he will give them more grace. which the Lord hath promised to them that love him". made before the world began. and perform it. respecting temporal things. There are other promises which respect the life to come. and that his fear shall be continually in their hearts. and write them in their minds. 32:38-40. (Jer. the principal one. 18:7-10). Ezek. and though his patience and forbearance were for a long time exercised. working in them both to will and to do of his good pleasure: that he will put his Spirit into them. and the wicked in it. since there was a condition implied. until the day of Christ. and more. that he will sprinkle clean water upon them. "except they repented". and he became liable to eternal death. through the blood of Christ. a sense of divine wrath. and he immediately became mortal. and the works of it. that he will carry on his good work of grace in them. as if it was the only promise. in which all others issue and end. have been exactly fulfilled in that people. that "he that believeth. of which they may be confident. and give them spiritual strength to keep his statutes. upon the account of the blood of his Son. God threatened Adam. when it was threatened. and remember their sins no more. that he will forgive their iniquities. And as God has threatened men with the burning of the world. Deut. shall be saved". and they shall not depart from him. and other judgments.

and as then. so to all eternity. alone. the heavens. that they may contemplate it. but the good will and pleasure of God. he needs no such declaration. satisfaction. to add unto it. the Father delighted in the Son. and for thy pleasure they are and were created". his eternal power and Godhead. and therefore his existence is not owing to any. he is incomprehensible by others. wanting nothing. the first and the last. and so the other parts of the creation. and others inexcusable. for he is "not worshipped with mens' hands. they consist in him. so not of men and angels in particular. He is an "infinite" and "all-comprehending" Being. being self-existent. which is always invariably the same. he must be self-sufficient. the chief good. and what they have. but to angels and men. as for the fountain to need its streams. 36). and both in the blessed Spirit. and therefore selfsufficient: he is the Fountain. no not their 134 . (James 1:17) and therefore must have a fulness of goodness in him sufficient for himself. "the brightness of his glory. and would have had if none had been made. declare his glory. 4:11) but pleasure there does not signify delight. and it would be as absurd for him to need them. not of their worship. or to make himself happy. or anything from them. that is. the Son in the Father. and move. 8:30) for creation adds nothing at all to the perfection and happiness of God. not of men. his manifestative glory. and through him. He is possessed of all perfections. before him there was no God formed. He is the "first" of Beings. he has one of his names. and the preservation of it. are streams. creatures. and is sufficiently happy in them. perfections. and have their beings in him. for his glory. and the express image of his person". when as yet no creature existed. originally. And as he does not stand in need of the creation in general. The invisible perfections of God. and needs not anything from without himself to support himself. are upheld by the word of his power. and receive benefit by it. and had before any creatures were made. from everlasting to everlasting he is God. to make some better and happier. every good and perfect gift comes from him. nor of any services of theirs. "by thy will they are and were created: God has made all things for himself. Three things may be observed under this attribute. and to one another. otherwise he would not be the independent Being he is: all have their dependence on him. and so not God: being infinite. "Shaddai". nor will be any after him. and owe their being. to what is infinite nothing can be added: if anything was wanting in him he would be finite. he must be selfsubsistent. From this attribute of God. as has been abundantly showed in the preceding chapters. before any other existed. to him. and he in them. 1. and the design thereof is. and comprehends in himself all excellencies. which he would. which can add nothing to his perfection and happiness. and satisfaction among themselves. to give the utmost. but he stands in need of none of them. which signifies. which is not in him. or received anything from them. nor has he received any assistance or support from any. as if they were made for the sake of that in God. but to whom? not to himself. and subsisted in and of himself. as well as for his creatures. millions and millions of ages. he is good essentially. God in his divine persons. and for him are all things" (Rom. the source and fountain of all goodness. and it shall be recompensed to him again for of him. and happiness. see (Prov. delight. if he stood in need of. God is the "summum bonum". and so ever will. Besides. but then this adds nothing to his essential glory and happiness. (Rev. have enough within themselves. and should be rendered. and has all that is good in him. and therefore self-sufficient. even an eternity. as he existed of himself. being self-sufficient.Of The Sufficiency And Perfection Of God. if there was any excellency in another. it is dia to yelhma sou. "Who hath first given to him. as though he needed anythings". but not by God himself. who is sufficient. he would not be infinite. proceeding from them. but by men. but he depends on none. and inderivatively. before whom he was always rejoicing. "Thou hast created all things. he is perfect and entire. It is indeed said. are seen and understood by the things that are made. inconceivable to us. yea. 11:35. and can receive nothing from them. of which see Chapter 3. nor makes the least alteration in him. or allsufficient. Son and Spirit. he knows perfectly his own glory. and increase it. infinite complacency. All creatures stand in need of God to supply them and support them. God Father. and happiness. live. That God is a self-sufficient Being. who needs no such glass to view them in.

but to men. But what benefit does he receive thereby? he stands in no need of their prayers. but of choice. and is a reason why they are to be done. 3). and peace of the worshippers. the ordinances of divine service under the former dispensation were. and express his well pleasedness in them. temporal and spiritual. Should it be said. they are his due. indeed confirms what has been before asserted. added nothing to the perfection of God and his nature. 3. but "can a man be profitable unto God. has magnified the law and made it honourable. 16:2. Luke 17:10. and he is pleased to express his approbation of it. but then not he. these make for the manifestation and display of his glory among men. it is their duty to worship him. and they stand free and discharged in open court. who had the advantage of it. My goodness extendeth not to thee. but make no addition to his essential glory and happiness. not that he needs them. even of the best of men. in composing hymns and psalms to be sung by men. that the satisfaction he made to divine justice for his people. and in other affairs of this world. but they are the gainers by it. and godly. as well as in the apostate angels. obedience to his commands ought to be yielded. suitable to his nature as a Spirit. but to the perfection and happiness of men. and providing for the worship of God in it. the old world. and eternal life. their scores cleared. and it becomes men to give them to him. who are hereby led into communion with God. and that come thereby. in whom is all my delight: which if spoken by David of himself only. 6:2. the good will is to men. and so find it is good for them to wait upon him in them. of the imperfection and unprofitableness of which to God they are sensible themselves. 8. and all the good things he is come an high priest of. was of no avail to the essential happiness of God. come not to God. that God is glorified by men in the worship of him. that they may come to it and find grace and mercy to help them in their time of need: nor does he want their praises. the same may be said of the worship and services of angels. the God of their life. nor does he receive anything. as man. righteously. and those under the present are. as. for whose sake is the throne of grace set up? not for his own sake. and by living soberly. and in the whole of his life and conversation. There is a very remarkable expression in (Ps. 3) and though they are indeed made use of as instruments in providence (but not in creation) in the preservation of God's people. for the conversion of sinners and comfort of saints. and needs nothing from without himself. pardon. God is then a self-sufficient being. righteousness. as peace. just as he makes use of the ministry. and works of righteousness enjoined by him ought to be performed. nor could not convert the one and comfort the other without them. for the instruction. and cannot do without them. for it is certain he can. edification. and praising of him. 135 . 3:5-7). but was of use to the saints. and Sodom and Gomorrah: though the debt of obedience paid to the law.worship. yet not of necessity. by obedience to his will. but because these are the means and instruments he chooses to make use of. that the holiness of Christ. who hereby have their debts paid. and the debt of punishment paid to justice in their room. as he that is wise may be profitable to himself. Titus 3:8). both for their profit and by way of example to them: but if spoken by him in the person of Christ. and blush and cover their faces while performing them. but then the celebration of his praises adds nothing to his perfection and happiness. (Acts 17:25) he is and ought to be the sole object of their worship. that the goodness of men. who are made better thereby: nor is the obedience and righteousness of men of any profit to God. nor is he benefited by them. we are but "unprofitable servants" to him. it is not because God needs them. and not God. or to others? is it any pleasure to the almighty that thou art righteous? or is it gain to him that thou makest thy ways perfect?" (Job 22:2. the benefit of this redounds to men only. is of no advantage to God himself. Matthew 5:16) it is very true. but they. and to resent a contrary behaviour: but who has the advantage of it? not he. that the obedience he yielded in it was for the sake of men. it is both their duty and privilege to pray to him. he could have glorified his justice in the destruction of them. then they carry in them an higher sense still. (Isa. but then when we have done all we can. Though the glory of God is greatly displayed in salvation by Christ. but for the sake of his people. (1 Cor. by prayer to him. as it is clear the words are. and that in a spiritual manner. for the mercies of it. and ministers of the word. and the enjoyment of his gracious presence. God stood in no need of. but because it is his will and pleasure. but to others. but to the saints that are in the earth. and he condescends to accept of them. (John 15:9. The goodness of David in preparing for the building of the temple. comfort. 35:7. and to the excellent. and often does. "if thou be righteous what givest thou him? or what receiveth he of thine hand?" such works and such righteousness may be profitable to men. and in the destruction of their enemies.

advice. in matters of the greatest importance. and has done it: he breathed into Adam the breath of life. God appears to be all-sufficient in the communications of his grace. with great propriety. 104:27. the fowls of heaven. (Job 37:16) and there is a depth in his wisdom. 16. and "the cattle on a thousand hills". which Jacob was fully satisfied of. nothing is too hard for him. 28:20) and to take care of all the creatures. He is able to do whatsoever he pleases. and every "attribute" of his is "perfect". 50:10. (Ps. knows himself. (Ps. he has stored the covenant with all the blessings of grace. he is the God of all grace. 30) in a view of which it may well be said. (Job 10:12. 145:15. and manages. Matthew 10:29. but neither of them can give life and breath. and breath. for their acceptance with God. Phil. as appears from what has been under consideration. 11:33). essentially considered. (Matthew 5:48) his nature is perfect. 28. he has blessed his people in him with all spiritual blessings. (Acts 17:25). nor is his hand shortened that it cannot 136 . Ps. for the remission of their sins. to do or suffer for his name's sake. which is a full proof of his all-sufficiency: and which appears. which are unfathomable. A painter may paint as near to life as can be. as food and raiment. Prov. and all things" to his creatures. and carry them through all. the more simple and uncompounded any being is. 12:9. and wanting nothing. 12:10. There is a fulness of the Godhead which dwells in Christ. as they are his property.2. and assistance in it. 2 Cor. to fulfil all his engagements and promises. from any of his creatures. 22:28. the beasts of the field and forest. that it extends to all his creatures. and of the mountains. 11. there is no variableness in him. the most pure. and especially in God. called the God of their life. God is a perfect Being. "actus simplicissimus". and not only influences. all wait upon him. he has prevented Christ. and given them grace in him before the world began. (Rom. and he gives them their portion of meat in due season. nor does he need any wisdom. and preserve the life he has given. God is an all-sufficient Being. he is perfectly immutable. by Jesus Christ. desertion. spiritual. and bring them safe to his kingdom and glory (John 1:14. and so in all things intervening. (Ps. 2a. and uncompounded Being. and all-sufficiency in himself. In his gifts of nature and providence. or of a class between the one and the other. he is sufficient to govern the whole world. and to do exceeding abundantly above all that men ask or think. which is always sufficient for them. for he "gives life. even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect". and frame its limbs in proper symmetry and proportion. 147:9) yea. and all creatures and things perfectly. temptation. for them of all nations and kingdoms throughout the world. and is able to cause all grace to abound towards his people. as well as in his knowledge. and a large family they be to provide for every day. and does. "O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God!" &c. which concern kings and governors. and every good and perfect gift comes from him. sufficient for them in all ages and periods of time. and for the supply of all their wants while they are in this state of imperfection. 14) he disposes and overrules all things as he pleases. 2b. (Isa. and to supply all their wants out of that rich and glorious plenitude. ordinary or extraordinary. when they are called to service. 11:33) and as for his power. and in the hour of death. 66:9) and to provide for men all the necessaries of life. but God is sufficient to do this. counsel. they are his care. and therefore covenanted with God for them. 3. and has enough within himself to communicate to his creatures. 8:15. for them in every state and condition of life. nor shadow of turning. and justification before him. 4:19). the head and mediator of it with all the blessings of goodness. (James 1:17) he is perfect in knowledge. and a sculptor may give a statue its just features. and gives life to all his posterity. 40:13. which. the more perfect it is. God is a Spirit. and therefore the most perfect. as long as he pleases. "Be ye perfect. and yet this he is sufficient to do. in times of affliction. and is. for all believers. And so communicative and diffusive is his goodness. entirely perfect. but even those of the lowest consideration and use. and does. to bear up under. directs. and caused the fulness of it to dwell in him. What an all-sufficiency must he be possessed of! (Rom. weak or strong: and he has a sufficiency of it for all saving purposes. and the same therefore must be in each divine person. 42:8) and he is sufficient to support. kingdoms and states. simple. maintain. (Gen. and food suitable to them. No perfection of Deity is wanting in him. 16. and the cleansing of their souls. and he has a sufficiency of it to communicate to them at all times.

a Pythagorean philosopher. and to whom no authority is superior. are able to make the man of God perfect. which. for if God is a sufficient. he says. since the former supposes some want of knowledge. cannot be said to be in God. an Epicurean. and proceeds upon the authority of another. and the latter is but an obscure knowledge. says he. purity. 1. c. l. omnipotence. and fusei. in Vita Menedem. l. omniscience. needs no external cause. and is of himself perfect. in Cicero. and this name. 19:7. ENDNOTES: [1] thn aristhn econta zwhn kai thn autarkestathn diatelei ton apanta aiwna. ere long. (1 John 1:5) all the perfections and excellencies that are in creatures. by nature blessed. and "his work is perfect". are. as well as from all the perfections of God put together. than to speak of God as the holy and blessed God. he must be happy. de Coelo. is pronounced by the ancients. before discoursed of. 15:4. and faith in the Christian. we rightly call blessed. 40:26. and so is the work of redemption. in him. nor more abounding with all good things: he rejoices in his own wisdom and virtue. whose knowledge is clear and perfect. 137 . (Rom. That the nature of God is most blessed. This attribute may be strongly concluded from the last treated of. in the most perfect manner. which the reasoning power is employed to find out. is made to say. de Diis. eternity. A Body of Doctrinal Divinity Book 1—Chapter 25 Of The Blessedness Of God. immutability. God. 25:10. Diogenes apud Laert. properly speaking. for he is fusei by nature good. as a divine person. 17). 1 Tim. "the Son of the Blessed". (James 1:17) and though there are some things which are excellencies in creatures. 2 Cor. and the work of grace on the heart of everyone of his elect. and the way he prescribes to his people to walk in. Christ is called. every path of mercy and truth he pursues. as the reasoning faculty in men. agreeable to his nature. (Deut. since they all come from him. infinity. and Velleius. (Isa. but. Ethic. auto men gar to yeion anendeev. and "no darkness" of sin "at all". 1:25. on the contrary. and. Aristot. angels. and therefore the want of them does not infer any imperfection in him. his way is perfect. 2 Tim. 18:30) his ways of providence are without any just blame. is so called. he never leaves till he has finished it. 11:31. and an all-sufficient Being. [3] It is a notion of the heathens themselves. yet these are such as would be imperfections in him. 1:16. and self-sufficient. the highest perfection. in their writings and prayers. omnipresence. as well as eternal. he is a rock. yewn men idion einai mhdenov deiyai. 5. c. that nothing can be thought of more blessed than the life of God. and men. 59:1) and his holiness is without the least tarnish.save. and the scriptures. 9:5) and nothing is more common with the Jews. 1. that God stands in no need of anything. and assuredly knows that he ever shall be in the highest and eternal pleasures: this God. in him are "light". neither of which can be supposed in God. 1:11) and Christ. Euryphamus. (Rom. From this attribute of blessedness the scriptures often style God the "blessed" One. "God blessed for ever". thought he wrongly represents him as neither doing nor designing any thing. is perfect. [2] to gar teleion agayon autarkev einai dokei. 9. says he. (Ps. and as for God. c. his simplicity. which are of him. and "the blessed God". more clearly expresses himself. the mystery of providence will be finished. as they must. 6. (Rev. 28. Aristot. (Mark 14:61. Once more. 62) the Creator of all things is said to be. Epicurus himself asserted. 15. Ps. and holiness. 32:4) his work of creation is finished. Sallust. l.

he is higher than the highest. (1 Tim. so he is clear from all the evil consequences of it. as Eve was. exceeding unhappy. and in the possession of all good things. are completely happy. that "no man can approach unto. and mars their happiness. "dwelling in the light" of his own essence. and all persons and things in it. (Deut. there is no iniquity in him. the most high God. and because some things are done by God similar to what are done by men. like other men. or worked up. and faithfulness. deceived. he is "King of kings. 16) "who is the blessed and only potentate". he is not accountable to any. as. and issues in their hurt and ruin: and such is his "wisdom". so striking and dazzling. he is over angels and men. are often sadly harassed. so even the most consummate and perfect holiness. being sifted by him as wheat is sifted. who. and make them unhappy. he has no rival. and raised to a pitch. but from an assemblage of them all (see Ex. or any other. and which he gives not to another. through ignorance. there is. he is so happy as not to be tempted with the evil of sin. and Adam and his posterity. nor oppressed by any: with respect to men. sin. for he is light itself. that he cannot be overcome. and which glory arises not from any single perfection of his. nor can see". but God is out of the reach of all. he rules in his own right. holiness. but has his authority for it of himself. 34:6. all hurts and damages by it. glory. and endless power and dominion. "who hath given him a charge over the earth? or who hath disposed the whole world?" (Job 34:13) he has the charge of the earth. (James 1:13) whereas good men. nor partner with him in his throne. so as to disturb and disquiet him. and calamities that befall any of the creatures. and extremely pernicious. circumvented. and so from all the consequences of it. it is the source of all disorders. 32:4) no darkness of this kind at all to eclipse his light. choose what is abominable. must needs be completely blessed. yea. and in whom no perfection is wanting. (Ps. It has been observed. it is exceeding sinful. and such is his glory and terrible majesty. particularly. men. or give him the least uneasiness. and gives it to others: and what mars the happiness of the greatest potentates on earth is. As it is in himself. in the present state. against the Lord". nor to be controlled by any. and as he is not affected with sin. "power on the side of their oppressors". in right of creation. and felicity: as holiness is the happiness of the elect angels. to do him the least hurt. being thoroughly holy. these are only ascribed to God. nor can be tempted to it. and so most blessed and happy as a potentate. and gaze upon it. and glorified saints. by all which he is described.justice. in the present state. "Who only hath immortality" of himself. in a freedom from all evils. It might be argued from his sovereign. and majesty with which he is arrayed. breaks their peace and comfort. to crush and distress them. such as grief and sorrow indulged. 6:15. nor counsel. that he cannot make choice of anything that will be to his detriment. glory. truth. but is not under the power of any. as there are in creatures. 19. 1. &c. that properly speaking. and wrath and anger provoked. The blessedness of God may be considered. Sin is an evil and bitter thing in its own nature. by Satan's temptations. and not another. whom no man hath seen. (Prov. nor can be. and Lord of lords". and disposes of the whole world. and from that light. is the happiness of God. and lies chiefly in these two things. all-sufficiency and perfection. nor understanding. he that is possessed of all these. disasters. not by a delegated power. sin has made some of the angels. and it is the infelicity of good men. distresses. and made unhappy. has power over others. that none can bear to come unto it. competitor. and having his fiery darts thrown at them. and as such will always continue. mistaking one thing for another. Such is his "knowledge" of all things. oftentimes. In which glory lies his complete and perfect happiness. In a freedom from all evils. that sin dwells in them. that he cannot be imposed upon. speaking after the manner of men. "O wretched" men that we are! but God is just and true. by being buffered by him. but there is no power superior to the divine Being. 1a. 33:18. but "there is no wisdom. and drawn into anything that may make him unhappy. 82:6. from the evil of evils. and so much trouble is given them. once in a most happy state. First. extensive. that they must and do die. 21:30) and such is his power. which wars against there. and obliges them to say. through the subtlety of the serpent. 7) and such is his light and splendour he is clothed with. there are no affections and passions in God to be wrought upon. as his holiness. 7). he is a "potentate". when they are 138 .

that. his kingdom rules over all. He has all good in him. (Hag. they have. are all from him. Does it lie in might. that he is the cause of all blessedness in his creatures. 16:11) and if such as to make his creatures happy. and is an everlasting one. he is good to all. there is no strength nor power comparable to his. angels and men. in whom only happiness is to be found. 50:10-12). it can be thought to be in God only. he gives all things richly to enjoy. &c. yet being without understanding. Does it lie in fame. as the horse and the mule. besides the good things he bestows on them here. That happiness is the greatest which is independent. and had of all men the greatest share of it? these are in God in the highest perfection. as Samson's excellency did? God is "mighty in strength: if I speak of strength". 24:1. in credit. the beasts of the field. which the heart of man cannot conceive of. and the silver is mine. 11:33). "Lo. may be thought to be happy. the mines and metals of the earth. His blessedness lies in the possession of all good. as strength. as of wisdom. if they know them not. 2. Does it lie in pleasure. his saints bless him. Does it lie in wisdom and knowledge. there is no searching of his understanding. 11:36). the chiefest good. as though they received it not. 2:8) all the gold and silver in the world. 73:25). (Acts 20:35) he is the "summum bonum". Angels have their beings from him. that they are chosen in Christ. and does good. where Solomon sought for happiness. and therefore most happy. see the face of God. he is good. his glory is above the heavens. Does it lie in wealth and riches? "The gold is mine. yea. the fowls of the heaven. swiftness. and all the fulness of it. in which their greatest blessedness lies. Hence happiness is denied of brutes. he is the blessed and only potentate. and so most blessed for evermore. but this can no more cease than his Being. saith the Lord". for "it is more blessed to give than to receive". knowledge. when all nature is surveyed. Ps. they have nothing but what they have received. the happiness of angels and men is dependent on God.grieved and provoked to wrath. yea. are all things (Rom. Does it lie in grandeur and dominion? with God is terrible majesty. in which also Solomon sought for it. and through him. What may serve further to prove and illustrate the blessedness of God is. and "the cattle on a thousand hills". and every place and thing searched into. that his blessedness endures for ever. and for him. and receives from none. he is the fountain of all goodness. 1b. from everlasting to everlasting: could his happiness cease. and he is found to be that. are the people whose God is the Lord! who. Secondly. his name is great from the rising of the sun to the going down of the same. wanting nothing. Such and such persons. Add to all this. and therefore cannot glory. and strength. 19. and a limitation of their happiness: but the happiness of God is infinite and independent. and at his right hand are pleasures for evermore". of him. "O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God!" (Rom. 89:8). but happy. it would detract from it. and the high esteem of others? How excellent is the name of God in all the earth! his works praise him. and it will be found in God in its full perfection. angels celebrate his glory. &c. he has laid up such goodness for them hereafter. and enjoy his favour. he is strong". even for the present. "Who is a strong Lord like unto thee?" (Job 9:4. thrice happy. then certainly to make himself happy also. he gives to all. in the latter of which the substance of men formerly lay (Ps. and this is a restraint upon. they are not happy in them. (Ps. he is God blessed for ever. he comprehends all that can be called good. he is perfect and entire. for though there are many things which they excel in. power. The temporal happiness of men is from him. How blessed and happy then must he himself be! name whatsoever it may be thought happiness consists in. and what excellencies. and have all the 139 . and therefore must be happy. in such and such circumstances. all flow from his sovereign will and pleasure. the riches of both Indies are his property. it is he that has made them the spirits they are. he is invariably and unchangeably the same. but found it not? "In the presence of God is fulness of joy. he stands in no need of anything. according to the saying of Christ. are preserved in it. &c. otherwise. that they have a being. "Whom have I in heaven but thee? and there is none upon earth that desire besides thee" (Ps. all good things come from him. the chief. angels and men. are his. or be known that it would. whatever excellencies may be in creatures. are not happy: but God knows all the excellencies and perfections in his nature. strength. To happiness knowledge is necessary. says Job. and confirmed by grace in him.

glory. how blessed must he be in himself! 3. not by invoking a blessing on him. and love. the chief of their blessings. it is wholly within himself and of himself. a creature can give him nothing but what is his own. and partake of endless pleasures in the divine presence: and it will. Wherefore.necessaries and comforts of life. 7:11. that their fellowship is with the Father and his Son Jesus Christ. ad Culcem. 12. and behold the glory of Christ. and an increase in their families. They are blessed also with the word and ordinances. "Blessed be the Lord. l. and ascribing it to him. Thus he is blessed by angels. and he will dwell with them. 103:1-3. and all the blessings of goodness with him. &c. the creature of the Creator. ENDNOTES: [1] De Natura Deorum. Fourthly. are proofs of the blessedness that is in him. and know as they are known. to invoke and ask one of. see him as he is in Christ. and bear his image in a more perfect manner: and also it lies in communion with God. the blessings of pardoning grace. which they enter upon at death. and from whence peace and comfort flow (Rom. as they are called upon to bless him. it is the happiness of saints now. Which is done. in regeneration. and enjoy to all eternity. he receives none from without himself. Son. [2] Fragment. which is begun in this life. faith. and herds. and blessing to him. 103:20. (Gen. bestowed on them by him. and he himself is the blessedness of his creatures. 5:11. Ps. "Blessed be the Lord God". in Vita Zeno. moreover. the less is blessed of the greater. Laert. 4:6-8. temporal and spiritual. nor need fear any evil they have Christ. that the tabernacle of God will be with men. who daily loadeth us with benefits" (Ps. when newly born souls are made partakers of the divine nature. God is pronounced. and all within them. without all contradiction. with the blessed hope. do ascribe honour. on account of which it behooves them to say. when they shall awake in his likeness. who is himself their covenant God and Father. by all his creatures. and of the ultimate glory the saints shall then have. for as he needs none. 1. who. 1:3). and therefore cannot want any good thing. but face to face. [3] So the Stoics say of God. or the blessedness laid up in heaven. 12) and by the saints. and not the Creator of the creature: but this is done by congratulating his greatness and blessedness. 7. and all his graces. that they have health and wealth. everlasting and uninterrupted communion with Father. 145:10). Rev. Eph. 68:19). much less by conferring any upon him. 9:26. they are hoping for. when they shall "see God for themselves. hope. 11). 1. hence the frequent form of blessing him used. is usually called the beatific vision. because of the happiness of it. and not another". 72:18. 5:1. and hereafter will be blessed with eternal happiness. A Body of Doctrinal Divinity 140 . and owned to be blessed. Luke 1:68. who call upon their souls. who are made happy by him. and it will be the blessedness of the new Jerusalem state. Their spiritual blessings come from him. and will be perfected in the future state. when they enjoy it. that he is perfect and intellectually happy. and which. which all centre and terminate in his blessedness. see no more darkly through a glass. 4. which are the means of increasing grace. as they come from him. joy and peace. the Spirit. and praising him for all blessings. flocks. Besides. and a justifying righteousness. that they are blessed in basket and store. (Ps. lie in the vision of God. and spiritual peace. which. kakou pantov anepidekton. Thirdly. God is his own blessedness. and what they exult in. declared. or from his creatures. to bless his holy name for all benefits bestowed upon them (Ps. unsusceptible of any evil. nothing that can add to his happiness. Now if such blessedness comes from God. And here ends the account of the attributes of God. and Spirit. whose blessedness lies in likeness to him. for there is none greater than he. and in which their blessedness greatly lies. is increased by sights of the glory of God in Christ. Laert.

it is a most certain truth. thou doest well. who is possessed of all these great and glorious perfections. there can be but one God. who is without a cause. and comfort of their being. to the cause of that. doctrine. according to Pythagoras and Plato. to judicial blindness. and requires an assent and obedience to. all owe their existence to him. and not he: not of his own will and choice. which is without a cause. and is as clearly and as strongly asserted in the New. The apostle James commends the faith of it. in which they are not at all to be excused from idolatry. (Mark 12:2830) it is the voice both of reason and revelation. is independent of any. for no reason can be given why there should be. 14. 46:9. and is the Cause of all. most surely to be believed. therefore. and partly from the perfections of God. which. for then that other would be prior and superior to him. yet they held and owned one supreme Being. God is the first Being. 8. "one". Adodus. Eph. if God is not one. 43:10. 141 . by the holy angels. 6. to believe the Father of lies. 1 Cor. the mind of man. and his relations to his creatures. was called Adad. and heathen poets and philosophers. so. "Thou believest that there is one God. which may be taken partly from express passages of scripture. indeed. and with the greatest confidence to be asserted. and liked not to retain him in their knowledge. 1. It is a truth agreed on by all. the first Cause. more than one necessarily existent Being. This is the first and chief commandment which God has given. 86:10. and so depend upon him for the preservation. It remains. and even by the devils themselves: it must be right and well to believe it. and which still continues. and therefore but one God. and so be God. Ps. 22. 3:30. and with the Phoenicians. who says there are more than one. there can be but one God. by Old and New Testament saints. and paid a lesser sort of worship to the rabble of inferior deities. and from one cause. 4:6. and not to be doubted of. but he. whom they often call the Father of the gods and men. is an article in the Jewish Creed. and faith depend. 8:4-6.Book 1—Chapter 26 Of The Unity Of God. and no wonder. That there is but one God. I shall now proceed to prove that this God. 8:4). by Jewish doctors. by Jews and Gentiles. and. though they complied with the custom of countries in which they lived. as he is a fool that says there is no God. Rom. who led them on by degrees into the grossest idolatry. as Macrobius relates. The sense of these scriptures will be observed hereafter. 2:5). signifies "one". all live. he says. or of will and choice. First. it is discernible by the light of nature. The necessary existence of God is a proof of his unity. he is the first Cause. To give the proof of this doctrine. The existence of God must be either of necessity. This is a first principle. unity is the principle of all things. Mark 12:29. 45:5. the same with dxa. as Tertullian observes. and is what is truly called God. 1 Tim. and move. there is but one independent Being. and as therefore there is but one first Cause. from effects. the chief God with the Assyrians. 18. yet the wiser and better sort of them. 21. and be and not be at the same instant. both in the Old and New Testament (see Deut. the King of the gods. God. and last End of all things. that he necessarily exists. Isa. But I go on. the devils also believe and tremble" (James 2:19). rises to the knowledge of causes. which can only be said of one. 44:6. receiving his being from none. since it stands in such a glaring light in the writings of the Old Testament. or can be. he is not at all. if of will and choice. and so proceeds on until it arrives to the first Cause. John 17:3. so that "we" Christians "know" assuredly. then it must be either of the will and choice of another. 6:4. is but "one". what teaches men there is a God. and have their being in him. he is equally so. and if so. teaches them there is but one: and though when men neglected the true God. Having treated of the attributes of God. not of another. which is such an absurdity and contradiction as is not to be endured. he gave them up to a reprobate mind. or of his own. for then he must be before himself. "that there is none God but one" (1 Cor. on which all religion. continuance. the cause of all other beings. and his worship. is independent.

and so not God. one kingdom. neither shall there be after me". nothing is too hard. as he is not bounded by time. and inderivatively. from everlasting to everlasting. To explain the sense in which this article of one God is to be understood. and accountable to. comprehend. of Him who is the first Cause and last End of all things. God". 43:10) if then no other. "your heavenly Father". God is a perfect Being. so not by space. nor comprehended by any. and so not God. (Matthew 19:17) and therefore but one God. and is so absurd and contradictory. different and contrary laws. who is the King of kings. or whose laws they should pay a regard unto. He is the "summum bonum". omnipotence admits of no degrees. or not. The true God is "El-Shaddai". 2a. is distinguished from all others in whom it is not. "before me". with respect to the knowledge of God. then he on whom the restraint is laid. essentially. as before observed: and if revelation carries us no further than what the light of nature discovers. too difficult. which belongs to him. edicts. originally. so but one God. if it does not. says Christ. and a third that is most almighty. and that since the fall. who is able to save and to destroy. wanting nothing. then it is not infinite. then he to whom it belongs is not God. the chief good. the greatest confusion would be introduced in the world. All-sufficiency can only be said of One. And. The heathens call their supreme God "Optimus". comprehend. who can do all things whatsoever he pleases. 2. or stay and stop him from acting. completely perfect: now if there are more gods than one. which are in the Scriptures levelled so much against the notion of more supreme gods. It is not to be understood in the Arian sense. God all-sufficient. and for him. and that is but one. whom all receive their beings from. if there were more than one that had the sovereign sway. are all things. This is no other than what is the notion of the better and wiser sort of pagans. the other is mightier than he. and include the other. there is but one Almighty. God is infinite and incomprehensible. and include the other. then he is not almighty. if it does reach unto. the source and fountain of all goodness. and so but one God. either the one can lay a restraint upon the other. and by him. stands in need of nothing. To suppose two infinites. he is not contained or included anywhere. might be published. the best. and what their duty to be performed by them. nor are the expressions concerning the unity of the divine Being. God is good. Secondly. The Lord God almighty: now there cannot be more than one Almighty. and there call be none better than the best. "there was no God formed. Were there more than one. Omnipotence is a perfection of God. he in whom it is. There is but one Creator. and therefore but one God. (Isa. To suppose two almighties. and Lord of lords. and that must be either an excellency or an imperfection. and which. and there can be but one. (Matthew 5:48) he is perfect and entire. but against petty and 142 . and hinder him from acting. and so is the one and only God. we gain nothing by it. (James 4:12) one King and Governor of the world. nor can any turn back his hand. is finite. Eternal. and another that is more almighty. it cannot be said. and subjects would not know whom they were to obey. and if but one infinite. then that which is comprehended. is not almighty. if he cannot. that there is no danger of mens' giving into it. "is perfect". and so but one God. and in its corrupt state. which is a notion that could never prevail much among the heathens. there is one that is almighty. Once more. or he cannot. he claims this title to himself. First. "There is none good but me". then but one God. and decrees. if the former. (Mal. if he can. and so not God.God is an eternal Being. for of him. and is hindered from acting. because not perfect. I proceed. or impossible to him. there must be some essential difference by which they are distinguished from one another. then but one God. says he. before all things. "that is. as he is but one. are supported by. that there is one supreme God. the one must either reach unto. therefore it is clear there cannot be more infinites than one. and two subordinate or inferior ones. says Christ. 2:10) but one Lawgiver. and therefore there can be but one God. and included by it. if the latter.

that they "agree in one". that the Father became incarnate. that such are not entitled to religious worship. This unity of them is not an unity of testimony only. Col. (John 15:16. an ancient work of darkness. but one God. and who speaks of one sort of the Cataphrygians who held that Jesus Christ was both Son and Father. suffered. but of this more hereafter. but as the whole fulness of the Godhead dwells in the Father. or are nibbling at it. and the Holy Ghost in the rest of the nations. and therefore but one God. fancying they have got new light. &c. Our Socinians and modern Unitarians are much of the same sentiment with the Sabellians in this respect. if creators. and they as often deny the charge. or two thousand? no reason can be given why the one should not stand as much excluded as the other: and again. civil magistrates. "The gods that have not made the heavens and the earth. are one person. the Son in Judea. then they are the one supreme God. 2b. the Son another. this the Trinitarians indeed are often charged with. 10:11) to which may be added. that is to say. judges. and stands opposed to the polytheism of the heathens. and not One only. and this unity is not an unity of parts. were but one person. because of the same nature. and Holy Ghost. why not two hundred. against whom Tertullian wrote. they could not be three testifiers. that there are three essences or beings numerically distinct. and from under these heavens". but this is to assert three Gods and not one. then they are not gods that made the heavens and the earth. the Son is God. Son. or that I am one. Son. (1 John 5:7. 1:25. and so come under the imprecation of the prophet. and said he was the Father in Samaria. which the Sabellians deny. and the Holy Spirit a third. if two subordinate and inferior deities may be admitted. for though there is but one God. as they are said to be. the Son another. who had gods many and lords many. Nor is this unity of God to be 143 . they have one and the same infinite and undivided nature. were only different names of one and the same person. but if creatures. 8:4. under which may be many singulars of the same kind. for there is no medium between the Creator and the creature. which maybe said to be one. and even it may be traced up as high as Simon Magus. "Thou shalt have no other gods before me" (Rom. as the body and soul of man do. there are three persons in the Godhead. but God is one in number and nature. Ex. and in this sense but one God. whose followers were called Noetians and Patripassians. and would be a breach of the first command. when they have only imbibed an old stale-error. even to all who are not by nature God (Gal. undivided. for to create is peculiar to him. as free men may be said to be one. or may they perish from the earth. For. that there is but one divine essence. which has been confuted over and over. Son. Nor is this article to be understood in the Sabellian sense. and some who profess evangelical doctrines have embraced it. yet not that they are three Gods. which would be worshipping the creature besides and together with the Creator. and the Holy Ghost a third. "I and my Father are one". 2:9) and so in the Spirit. and if the Father is one that bears record. for though they affirm the Father is God. as angels. (1 John 5:7) to testify is a personal action. for this is to make him say what is the most absurd and contradictory.inferior deities men might be tempted to embrace and worship. and died: and before them Victorinus and Praxeas were much of the same opinion. they must be three persons. in consequence of their principles. and when Christ says. and Spirit. (Jer. who are so called from one Sabellius who lived in the middle of the third century. because of the same human nature. those deities are either creators or creatures. (1 Cor. which makes one compositum. and common to Father. who has all that the Father has. for God is a simple and uncompounded Spirit. for it is not said of them as of the three that bear record on earth. consistent with one God. 2d. and these possess the whole essence undivided. Besides. though there are different modes of subsisting in it which are called persons. according to his different way of operation: and as before his pretended conversion he gave out that he was some great one. They assert. and the Holy Ghost is God. 8) but it is an unity of nature. that God is but one person. 4:8). as that I and myself are one. 20:1. (Acts 8:9) so he did afterwards. and my Father who is another. that is. (John 10:30) he cannot mean one person. so in the Son. 2). asserting. not that the Father has one part. who asserted that Father. though this notion was breached before him by Noetus. even they shall perish. 2c. Nor is this doctrine to be understood in a Tritheistic sense. since there is but one essence. 5) and to all nominal and figurative deities. but that they "are one". nor an unity of genus and species. If the Father. and Spirit.

as has been observed. and pronounces men justified by it (1 Cor. by faith. and which is required to be given to the one Jehovah. 44:6) the only Lord God calls himself "the first and the last". and uncircumcision through faith". 54) the reason of this mode of expression. (1 John 5:20) nor would he have joined himself so closely with the only true God. and has obtained eternal redemption for men: and in another of those passages. nor by the "many attributes" of God. 12:10) and so the Holy Ghost. or divine person. and there is none else: now as the Father cannot be supposed to be excluded hereby. there is one God of Jews and Gentiles. In Romans 3:30 it is said. (Rom. for Christ the Son of God is Jehovah. In one of them. as one and the same man may have different names. and are but one God. even Father. a name very peculiar to the Son. to the exclusion of the others. yea one with him. nor from one another. which this is said to prove. and the Sun of righteousness. though distinctly considered by us. (Isa. as El. a word of the plural number. 26 and these) with the Father. Jehovah. and in (Isa. (Ps. Elohim. works faith to receive it. 6:11). the following verse (Isa. since he is Jehovah our righteousness. and Jesus Christ whom thou hast sent": since Christ also is called the only Lord God. and glory. "this is life eternal. and yet but one. (see John 6:47. that they might know thee the only true God. who agreed to be the Redeemer. Nor are those passages of scripture which assert the unity of God to be appropriated to one person only. but by their distinctive modes of subsisting. but are all one in God. of the same nature. nor from one another. and besides. "It is one God which shall justify the circumcision by faith. 23:6. but not that this is peculiar to the Father. (Isa. that is. cannot be understood to the exclusion of the Son and Spirit. Zech. The several passages in Isaiah before referred to. Mal. is because Christ is described by his office as sent of God. cannot be understood to the exclusion of himself. distinguishing the one from the other. "Hear. 10:9. 144 . came in the fulness of time as such. and are himself. The words of our Lord Jesus Christ. 11). they differ not from the divine essence. but to be considered as including each. 5. 8. so neither should the Son and Spirit be thought to be excluded by similar expressions elsewhere. (Isa. but he himself justifies them by his knowledge. 3:29) but Christ cannot stand excluded from the one God that justifies. and applies it. and may be rendered our Gods. 1:8) yea in the same passage the one God styles himself the Redeemer. (Isa. 9 compared with Acts 28:25. (Jude 1:4) and the true God and eternal life. Nor by the "persons" in the Godhead being more than one. Num. (John 17:3) which affirm the Father to be the only true God. for though three persons. 6:1. exciting attention. (Mark 12:28. which do not differ from him. besides. for I am God. 45:21) the only Lord God is spoken of as a Saviour. 23:6. that is. since these are names of the one God. and are manifestly included in Elohenu. the Lord our God is one Lord!" and which Christ refers the scribe to as the first and chief command. (Jer. 14:10. (Rev. &c. for Christ the Son is one of them. 45:23) is manifestly applied to Christ by the Apostle (Rom. The famous passage in Deuteronomy 6:4 which is introduced in a solemn manner. are the one Lord or Jehovah. O Israel. 53:11) nor the Holy Spirit. and the Spirit that God. 29) asserts that there is but one Jehovah. 53. a title which also Christ the Son of God claims as his. 45:22) Christ is represented as a Saviour inviting and encouraging persons to look to him for salvation. enforcing it with this reason. the Son and Spirit are entitled to the same sincere and fervent love of men as the Father. eternal life is made as much to depend on the knowledge of Christ as of his Father. who anointed Christ as man. because our understandings are too weak to take them in as in the gross. Jews and Gentiles. or rather our divine persons are one Lord. who is that God whose throne is for ever and ever. and is often so called (see Ex. Jer. if he was not so. and as exclusive of the Son and Spirit. 17:7. but to consider them apart. Son. 45:6. who brings near Christ's righteousness. 7) and that the three divine persons who are the one Jehovah are here meant. and which so strongly assert the unity of the Divine Being. 21:6 compared with 1 Cor. is not only the sense of Christian writers but even of the ancient Jews and besides. power. and Spirit. 4:2) and it is not only his righteousness by which men are justified.objected to and set aside by the many names of God. but he thought it no robbery to be equal with him.

the Father. Besides. And this doctrine of the unity of the divine Being. or address. and for this reason. and entreat with him about peace and reconciliation. there is "but one God the Father. Joseph Albo in Sepher lkkarim. without division and distraction of mind. It is also said in (1 Tim. especially in the affair of worship. both solemn acts of religious worship (see Matthew 28:19. 1. besides. he is considered as the one God. see (Mal. Yesode Hattorah. as each may be distinctly addressed. [2] Homer. 6) and will serve to clear and explain the words there to the same sense. but the Father of all. if Christ could be thought to stand excluded from the one God. as the one God. the one God. though not different. be to which person it may. Iliad. 8:6) which expresses the faith of Christians. it guides the mind right in the consideration of it. and concord among the saints. and the centre of our affections (Jer. 73:25). in the name of all Three. 1. for let the direction. and lay his hands on both. as in the following verse: but after all. As well as this doctrine carries a strong and powerful argument to promote unity. said of Christ in the same text. and be a ransom for them. which are not to be exercised on different objects. l. and to be divided between them. 12:1). by the same rule of interpretation. c. while worshipping. but then if he was not the one God. hence baptism is administered equally. l. 145 . so being closely attended to. be it to the Father. 1. 6. 1. 3. if the address is to the Son. he could not be a daysman between them. 7. or the true God.The text in (1 Cor. v. God. 59. and the worship of any creature whatever. Son. 2:10) in which character. is of great importance in religion. with the Father and Son. 1:4. This is the sense of the first and second Commands. Father. and prayer is jointly made unto them. and Spirit. [5] Maimon. with the Son and Spirit. (1 Cor. he is considered as the one God. stands opposed not to any other persons in the Godhead. though there are three persons in the Godhead. Opera et Dies. l. but are to centre in one object. he could not draw nigh to God. Hesiod. he could not be a Mediator between God and man. c. and one Mediator between God and men. this is an article that must be inviolably maintained. and love. 4. God the Father must stand excluded from the one Lord. Rev. which forbid owning any other God but one.5). harmony. 2. equally as to the Father. with the other divine persons. 17:7. and these observations may be applied to (Eph. And this doctrine also serves to fix and settle the object of our faith. whom alone we are to make our confidence. But this hinders not but that the Son and Spirit may have acts of worship performed to them. is for the sake of the mention of him in his office as Mediator. the Creator. 38. l. p. Marcion. praepar. and the great God. angels or men. which to do is to worship the creature. or along with the Creator. or if the address is to the Spirit. he is considered in the act of worship. or any other creature. but to the many lords and gods among the heathens. of whom are all things". c. and the likeness of them. l. with him. and much less make peace for men. and none of them stand excluded from Deity. yet there is but one God. Ps. because they are. that is. our hope. the Son and Spirit are included (Eccl. as it fixes and settles the object of worship. 24. is the object of it. or opposed to him. s. [3] Saturnal. as will more clearly appear hereafter. with the Father and the Spirit. ENDNOTE: [1] Adv. [4] Sanchoniatho apud Euseb. 8:5) nor is the Father called the Father of Christ. 1. 4:5. 2:5) that "there is one God. The doctrine of the unity of the divine Being. the one only true God. Evangel. 1. hope. the man Christ Jesus": now the reason why Christ is spoken of as distinct from the one God. the one only God. without any confusion and division in it. for which it is used in Ephesians 4:3-6. c.

is always in the singular number. c. 3. my next work will be to prove that there is a plurality in the Godhead. 23. l. is expressive of the sacred Trinity. 1a. (Deut. Fulgentii Respons. cannot design fewer than three. as his name Jehovah. and yet not precisely two. [11] Vid. [12] Irenaeus Adv. First. A Body of Doctrinal Divinity Book 1—Chapter 27 Of A Plurality In The Godhead. and to the people of Israel. the reason of which is. Now Moses might have made use of other names of God. [14] See my Doctrine of the Trinity. From the plural names and epithets of God. 1:1) and therefore must design more than one. will appear more clearly. nor the barrenness of the Hebrew language. but it is plural. c. the singular of Elohim. Christ. Haeret. & Adv. at least two. [10] De Praescript. Prove that there is a plurality of persons in the one God. but the first name of God we meet with in scripture. That there is such a plurality of persons. 1. 33:15) and "he brought thee out wynpb by his persons". c. because not literally and syllabically expressed in scripture. 20. in his account of the creation. The word is used three times in (Ps. that there are more than one. and that these are neither more. 9) and in each clause the Septuagint has the word proswpon. and is never used plurally. than three. and. so that it was not want of singular names of God. 1. (Ex. or. Trinity. nor fewer. Obj. and Person. 4:37). it is the same with "I AM that I AM". because it is expressive of his essence. in Vita Pythagorae.. 1. that there are more persons than one. or Eloah. 27:8. Relig. and which. ynp "My persons shall go with thee". de Haeres. de Haeres. Unity. "In the beginning God (Elohim) created the heaven and the earth". c. [9] Tertullian. as the Jews themselves say. by which he made himself known to him. as Suidas observes. is used of the divine persons. see topic (point 5). [8] Vid. and that in the first verse of it. and which will be more evident when it is 146 . Or. or. 4. is plural. (Ex. Some except to these terms. [7] Laert. which obliged him to use a plural word. His great and incommunicable name Jehovah. I shall. A Trinity Of Persons In The Unity Of The Divine Essence.. 16) and in the book of Job frequently.[6] Vide Mornaeum de Ver. and explained the sense in which it is to be understood. The Hebrew word Mynp which answers to the Greek word proswpa. or two only. (Gen. contr. 33:14) and if Kynp "thy persons go not with me. de Praescript. 52. which is used by him. and with design. or. [13] Vid. c. 32:15. 2. 53. Danaeum in August. 1. 741. (Deut. 10. Haeres. Arian. p. Augustin. 19. Having proved the unity of the divine Being. which is but one. that there is a Trinity of Persons in the unity of the divine essence. as Essence. 36. Praxeam. it was no doubt of choice. c. c. of which see the Introduction. then it would have been dual.

but are often messengers of God. which could not be to inculcate a plurality of gods. 7:1) as they well may be called. included in this name. 6:4). since they are the vicegerents and representatives of the Elohim. he must have some design in it. nor need it be wondered at. And it is used of civil magistrates. 35:7. Prov. to be living. that the ancient Jews believed that this name not only inferred a plurality of persons. created the heaven and the earth". and much less an affair of such consequence as this. the divine Majesty is with them. holy. characters which belong to persons. and to prevent the people of Israel from going into it. in this passage. is called Myhla unless it consists of three". 2 Sam. and to go forth to redeem Israel: all which are personal actions: and likewise it is in construction with adjectives and participles plural. is not merely because it is plural. or court of judicature. in the unity of the divine essence: but if this is not judged sufficient to build it upon. and they may be allowed to be the executioners of the decrees of God. let it be further observed. where a verb or adjective plural are joined with the word Elohim''. 82:6) and so of Moses. and therefore it may seem strange. (Ps. which some have thought is designed to point out a plurality of persons. or each of the divine persons. nor can anything in this world. 82:1) "he judgeth among the gods". &c.observed. 45:6. where is my fear?" (Mal. and which spoke that. to appear to Jacob. be said to be done in virtue of any decree of theirs: besides. and the word of God. for that would be directly contrary to what he had in view in writing. 7:26. are the Spirit of God. as a learned man well observes. because it is the most usual name of God. from the word Elohim. yet never of one in the first person. that he should begin his history with a plural name of God. it being common to them all. and speak in their name. It is used of angels. is.. distributively. 2 Sam. the decree of the most High. are no other than the divine Persons in the 147 . "Hear. No such stress is laid on this word. 30:3. which respects the revolution and destruction of the Babylonian monarchy. as it is here said of God by himself. it is used of others. and since each of them possess the whole divine nature and essence undivided. O Israel. and mentioned first. but however applicable these epithets may be to them. Gen. (Ps. With respect to the passage in (Num. 58:11. yet not the makers of them. the Triune God. Hence they further observes. the Lord our God is one Lord": nor a plurality of mere names and characters. "If I am (Adoaim) Lords. "that however the construction of a noun plural with a verb singular. are said to cause Abraham to wander from his father's house. And it may be further observed. as in (Gen. gods. and we are sure there are two. 10:10) in which places Elohim. 20:13. In Daniel 4:17 the most high God is called the watchers and the Holy Ones. as has been observed. "Let there be light. being used of him many hundreds of times in scripture. (Deut. (Ps. or divine persons. the gods. 4:24) so that the watchers and Holy Ones. for so the words may be rendered. "There is no judgment less than three". that it should be sometimes used of a single Person in the Deity. 7:23) where Elohim. that the word Elohim is sometimes in construction with a verb plural. "bara". this decree is expressly called. but such a plurality which consisted of three at least. And then the historian goes on to make mention of them. "The Lord said to my Lord". besides the Father. 4:7. Josh. 27. out of nothing. (Dan. represent them. as a god to Pharaoh. that "no sanhedrin. according to the idiom of the Hebrew language. who. 1:6) now. and the demand by the word of the Holy Ones". "In the beginning everyone. and all things. but because it appears often in an unusual form of construction. an affair of such moment and importance as not to be ascribed to angels. The ancient Jews not only concluded a plurality. but a plurality of persons. and that three persons sitting in judgment. which some understand by watchers and Holy Ones. they conclude from (Ps. 24:19. as if it was the clearest and strongest proof of a plurality in the Deity. From whence it is manifest. and to judge in the earth. see (John 1:1-3). Myhla. and to what he asserts. (Ps. may render it doubtful to some whether these words express a plurality or not. 7). (Gen. 5:26. but even a Trinity. and now. of the divine Persons in the Godhead. and there was light". or the divine persons. and what stress is laid upon it. that this plural word Elohim. (Ex. in construction with a verb singular. yet certainly there can be no doubt in those places. Jer. 1:2) which said. the divine Persons. though this may be said of one in the second and third persons plural. Ps. it is only mentioned. that moved upon the face of the waters. are said to be nigh to the people of Israel. (Deut. 15:16) they say. 110:1). rendered "created". that one end of the writings of Moses is to extirpate the polytheism of the heathens. but not in such a form. Another plural name of God is Adonim. 8:5) they being not only many. "This matter is by the decree of the watchers. "I am Lords". to which creative powers cannot be ascribed.

At the creation of man he said. this courtly way of speaking. he says. and there confound their language". 4:24) and they the watcher and Holy One. the en kai polla. was not so ancient as the times of Moses. "And the Lord God said. in the above passage. that God spoke to them. 1:26) the pronouns "us" and "our". who are holy in their nature. and of the knowledge of them as the gift of the gods. which might give rise to such a way of speaking. the first appearance of it is in the letters of Artaxerxes. respecting the works of creation. that they should be not like the angels merely. the man is become as one of us". after our likeness". for whatever private secret meaning Satan might have in saying. when he is spoken of as the Creator of men. and so she understood it. and be continued by their successors. nor even any of those proud and haughty monarchs. 3:22). they are not of his privy council. nor the companions of God. by whom he seems to intend the ancient Jews. as for the angels. owns that these words are to be understood not of one. 4:13). and grace. to bring evil upon them: and as they are so called in the plural number.Godhead. Not with any of his creatures. and letters wrote. than that more persons than one had an hand herein. "Let us make man in our image. Behold. as image and likeness being in the singular number. in the singular number in (Dan. let us go down. in the Persian empire. not with the highest angel in heaven. and come short of that glorious image. and which. 7:23) which might take its rise from the conjunction of Darius and Cyrus. 148 . but like God himself. and equal to him. and proved man's ruin.. and lived nearer the gods. when speaking of himself. for the words may be rendered. Philo. nor was he made after their image and likeness. manifestly express a plurality of persons. nor were they concerned in the creation of man. thy Creators. in (Gen. is clear from the plural expressions used of the divine Being. (Gen. by whose advice they act. and the many ideas in him. (Job 35:10. providence. I take to be no other than the one God. 54:5) in all which places. Pharaoh and Nebuchadnezzar. and now stands before us clothed with skins of slain beasts!" or else as comparing his former and present state together. A like way of speaking is used concerning men. and even they are not to be considered alone. this same decree is called. not as one of the angels. to suppose that Moses alludes to a custom that was not (for what appears) in being at that time. Ps. 149:2. and others. in the original text. and watch over the saints to do them good. and a plurality of persons in the Deity. use the plural number. the same with what we call decrees. upon which the Lord God said these words either sarcastically. and held a consultation with them about it. 40:14). to express their honour and majesty. who were better than we. (Dan. so that the polla. whose skins he now wears. this. but of more. to express the plnrality of them in the Deity. after the manner of kings. and over the wicked. the "one" and "many". which was the faith of the ancient Jews. for "with whom took he counsel?" (Isa. to express their power and glory: but. has lost his honour. none of the kings of Israel use if. he would have it understood by Eve. but as connotating their ministers and privy council. it is my Makers. secure the unity of the divine essence. this was the bait he laid. king of Persia. so much spoken of by the Pythagoreans and Platonists. and he expected to be as one of us. God sometimes uses the plural number when speaking of himself. these being personal plural characters. Nor is it to be thought that God. thy Makers. and is become like the beasts that perish. the decree of the most High. A plurality in the Deity may be proved from plural expressions used by God. nor a great while after. "Go to. for they are not of the Deity. 12:1. and both intend a plurality of persons. (Ezra 4:18. Eccl. who. as a learned man observes. "Ye shall be as gods". "Behold the man whom Satan promised. "it is a very extravagant fancy. who was a great Platonizer. and not possessed of creative powers. as one of the persons in the Deity. 1b." The Jews themselves are sensible that this passage furnishes with an argument for a plurality in the Deity. nor can it be reasonably thought. as the confusion of languages. made after their image and likeness: but what is he now? he has sinned. was delivered to us by the ancients. though understood by their followers of the unity of God. of Plato. so to preserve the unity of the divine essence. besides. Isa. see how much he looks like one of us! who but just now ran away from us in fear and trembling. and covered himself with fig leaves. "he was as one of us". I say. the Jew. and which Plato speaks of as infinite and eternal. they are creatures themselves. is the same with the plhyov of Philo. and. his Makers. with respect to some particular affairs of providence. no. in their edicts and proclamations. and that there were more than one concerned in the creation of man. for which no other reason can be given. speaks "regio more". and which took. in both whose names edicts might be made.

and with respect to spiritual communion with God. and who will go for us?" (Isa. in the following verse. who are expressly mentioned. but the Father. and observes. yet more persons than one are intended by him. from Jehovah in heaven. since the Evangelist applies them to him. 2) and Jehovah. Amos 4:11). what is said. plural expressions are used. 19:24) which conflagration was not made by the ministry of created angels. Whom shall I send. (Gen. Lightfoot is of opinion. and that we may be dismayed. but Jehovah. and scruples not to say. 18:27. this plural way of speaking is used by the divine Being. and promised to do what none but God 149 . in the wilderness. that at such a time the Trinity dined with Abraham. An angel also appeared to Abraham at the offering up of his son Isaac. are after explained of Jehovah. "If a man love me. did the other. 17-19) and to whom Abraham showed the utmost reverence and respect. for to them neither the name Jehovah. In another affair of providence. to whom they are also applied (Acts 28:25. and bid her return to her mistress. "show us what shall happen. 12 compared with Gen. and the Holy Spirit. expressive of communion and fellowship. 18:14. and acquaints her with future things. says the prophet Isaiah. and a Jehovah that sends. "I heard the voice of the Lord saying. who were angels in an human form. declare unto us things for to come. that they were the three divine Persons. had it. (Gen. 16:13) "She called the name of the Lord. now if there is a Jehovah that is sent. Dr. God. Sarah's maid. challenges the heathens. and spoke of him. which angel appears to be Jehovah. (John 12:40. from whom he is said to rain brimstone and fire on Sodom and Gomorrah. (Gen. 6:8) not the seraphim say this. 50:40. 1:14). to bring proof of their Deity. are gods. However. (Gen. the King of Jacob. since he promises to do that for her. and hence we read of fellowship with the Father. and so the us here. and his Son Jesus Christ. of the divine Persons (Jer. one of these was undoubtedly a divine Person. 18:13. that gave to man the faculty of speech. being Jehovah in human form on earth. who swore by himself. (Gen. and their gods. it would rather have been. in which. 19:1). 26). And as in the affairs of creation and providence. thou. and therefore called an angel. are said of more than one. expressly called God. the Judge of all the earth. and we will come unto him. is. the Son of God in an human form. who is expressly called Jehovah. 20. none but God. as when our Lord says. (Gen. 16:10-12) and what proves it beyond all dispute that he must be Jehovah. (Gen. and do "ye" confound their language: but. and my Father will love him. so in those of grace. and the use of language. and though there is but one Jehovah that here speaks. there must be more persons than one who are Jehovah. A plurality in the Deity may be proved from those passages of scripture which speak of the angel of Jehovah. To all these instances of plural expressions. that Isaiah said the words when he saw his glory. by prediction of future events. and scattering them abroad on the face of the earth. There is another passage in Isaiah 41:21-23 where Jehovah. or Jehovah. as to bestow the gift of tongues on the apostles. and we cannot be at a loss about two of them. may be added (Song 1:11.which also cannot be said to angels. 26) and to whom omnipotence and omniscience are ascribed. at Pentecost. nor are they ever called angels. smiting the Jewish nation with judicial blindness. go "ye". but is always represented as the work of Elohim. and the same God that did the one. 2 Cor. 22:1. and none but Jehovah could. as two of them are expressly said to be (Gen. where the angel of Jehovah is said to find Hagar. (John 14:23) which personal actions of coming and making abode. he will keep my words. alas! this work was above the power of angels to do. 41) nor of the Holy Ghost. to whom the confounding the language of men. 25. never assumed an human form. and also of the communion of the Holy Ghost. of Christ. (Acts 2:8-11). that spake unto her. seest". 30. The first instance of this kind is in Genesis 16:7. John 3:11). and. who also is Jehovah. and make our abode with him". that we may consider them. he all along uses the plural number. are ascribed. which no created angel. which was as great an instance of divine power. 22:11. nor the work agree. 1c. and who appears plainly to be the same with him who ordered him to do it. could confound it. In Genesis 18:2 we read of three men who stood by Abraham in the plains of Mamre. (1 John 1:3. and bid him desist from it. 31) and now he is distinguished. the Son of God no question can be made. '' See also Isaiah 43:9. that we may know that ye. Christ and his Father.

(Isa. where Jehovah promises to raise up a righteous branch to David. 9:19) and in the church's declaration of her faith in God. that is. 48:15. 8) to which may be added. as causing the iniquity of Joshua to pass from him. or. the Son of God.could do. no not the least thing. and in Hosea 1:7 where Jehovah resolves he would save his people by Jehovah their God. (Gen. is no other than Jehovah. Once more. and in Jeremiah 23:5. (Isa. and now I shall prove it. and promising to bring them into the land of Canaan. as distinct from each other. The angel invoked by Jacob. which none but God could do. equal to that of feeding him all his life long. but there is not anything. yea. notwithstanding. 6:13. and three times only. is prayed for from him. 3:4. "For there are three that bear record in heaven. Isaac. That this plurality in the Godhead. in Revelation 4:8 which may seem to be accidental. 61:10). and clothing him with change of raiment (see Isa. 6. the name of the Lord was in him. (Zech. but a divine person. the angel of God's presence. we read of the angel of the Lord. (1 John 5:9) but of a Trinity of Persons. coming to deliver them out of Egyptian bondage. 10:9). being accused by Satan. Add to this. 6:24-26) and in the prayer of Daniel. (Num. whose name should be called "Jehovah our righteousness". is ascribed to him. 19:24) where Jehovah is said to rain fire and brimstone from Jehovah. the God of Abraham. that there is a Trinity of persons in the unity of the divine essence: this I have before taken for granted. (Dan. Other passages might be mentioned. 33:22) and the word holy repeated three times. where it will be proved. as well as a blessing on the sons of Joseph. the Word. 16) is put upon a level with the God of his fathers Abraham and Isaac. The angel which appeared to Moses in the bush. 6:3) and in that of the living creatures. God. all which would never have been said of. "I AM that I AM". without design. he would not. 2. (Ex. a created angel. 14) and from the things ascribed to him. and since it is the same the children of Israel rebelled against. 33:16) and the application of this passage to God. but it is suggested. to keep and guide them in the way through the wilderness to the land of Canaan. seeing the afflictions of the Israelites. And not to take notice of the name Jehovah being used three times. that is said or written in the sacred scriptures. and would hereafter appear in this place. is neither more nor fewer than three. and their witness is called the witness of God. (Mark 12:26). under the same name of Jehovah. (Deut. all such scriptures which speak of two. (Zech. 1 Cor. is represented as the same. and Jacob. his nature and perfections. the prayer of Moses for a blessing on Joseph. 6. 22:16-18. 3:7. by our Lord Jesus Christ. though he could. whom they tempted. Jehovah. before whom Joshua the high priest was brought and stood. (Ex. because of the good will of him that dwelt in the bush. as proving a plurality in Deity. the angel that was promised to go before the children of Israel. To these may be added. that is. (Gen. (Gen. out of heaven. 63:9. saved and carried them all the days of old (Isa. Again. and the Holy Ghost. are not only said to be "one". that should they disobey him. but as some of these will also prove a Trinity in it. nor done to. 14) where what is here said is expressly ascribed to God. Heb. the Father. 3:2) was not a created angel. who. and three times only. (Ex. because the Lord had appeared. Secondly. and these three are one": which is not only a proof of the Deity of each of these three. in the seraphims' celebration of the glory of the divine Being. the name Abraham gave the place on this occasion. and the work of redeeming him from all evil. as in the above mentioned text. 3:1) who is not only called Jehovah. since not only the obedience of the children of Israel to him is required. he could be no other than Christ. Jehovah-Jireh. in the blessing of the priest. or the effect of a fervent and devout disposition of mind. one God. pardon their iniquities. inasmuch as they. 3:2) but takes upon him to do and order such things. which none but God can do: and also it is said. as is evident from the names by which he is called. in 150 . I shall begin with the famous text in 1 John 5:7 as giving full proof and evidence of this doctrine. they will be considered under the following head.

or his disciples. and the Holy Ghost from the Father and the Word. suppose. has supplied the version with this text. but that they "are one". which respects not a mere unity of testimony. about the middle of it. till restored from a copy of archbishop Usher's. and not in that used by them. who held that Christ was a mere man. and before him by Cyprian. 1630. or through copies erased falling into their hands. made in the latter end of the fourth century: and it is quoted by Athanasius. has it in his translation. son. towards the end of the second century: so that it is to be traced up within a hundred years. by Fulgentius. which is enough to satisfy anyone of the genuineness of this text. then under the character of a Son. And they may be called a Trinity. from an Eastern copy. the writing of the epistle. the compilers of which made use of various copies. complains of the omission of it.the unity of the divine essence. it should be observed. besides. To which may be added. it is found in many others. or less. such as had been corrupted before the times of Arius. and not three. the second epistle of Peter. the Socinians themselves have not dared to leave it out in their German Racovian version. and then under the character of the Holy Ghost. by De Dieu and Dr. it need only be said. that though here was a testimony three times bore. and certain it is. that it is not to be found in many Greek manuscripts. nine of them had it. as the apostle asserts. as the ancient writers testify: or it might be in the copies used by the fathers. that the context requires it. against the Arians. the second and third epistles of John. by whom it is said. by unfaithful interpreters. it is in the Complutensian edition. the 151 . and master. nor be understood of one person under different names. every one will conclude. which cannot be said of mere names and characters. and by Clemens of Alexandria. his father being living. so that now it stands in it. and yet. and be admitted to bear testimony in an affair there depending. As to its being wanting in some Greek manuscripts. for if the one living and true God only bears record. and is not quoted by the ancient fathers who wrote against the Arians. the connection with the preceding verse shows it. and yet he himself. and till of late appeared a very defective one. and of a master to servants under him. Suppose one man should. and stand in the relations of father. As to its not being quoted by some of the ancient fathers. for it is not said of them. the Father from the Word and Holy Ghost. as of the witnesses on earth. but a personal action is ascribed to each of them. put it into another edition of his translation. that as to the Syriac version. the epistle of Jude. the history of the adulterous woman in the eighth of John. To all which it may be replied. testimony. that bore record. until Erasmus left it out in the first edition of his translation of the New Testament. that there never was any dispute about it. who lived in the second century. though an ancient one. through the carelessness and unfaithfulness of transcribers. and yet not quoted by them. after all. that the enemies of it have done all they can to weaken its authority. And as to the old Latin interpreter. of a father to a child of his own. and should give his testimony first under the character of a father. I say. the Word from the Father and the Holy Ghost. that the old Latin interpreter has it not. this passage was erased. is asserted and secured. upon the credit of the old British copy. prefixed to his translation of those canonical epistles. for one man may bear the characters. Pocock. to prove and defend the doctrine of it. it is certain that it is to be seen in many Latin manuscripts of an early date. and who also. since they are not only spoken of as distinct from each other. but of nature. then under the character of a son. for they are all three said to be testifiers. that this epistle was very early corrupted. in the beginning of the sixth century. This text is so glaring a proof of the doctrine of the Trinity. when it might have been of great service to them. and who. having scriptures not without it. without any scruple or hesitation: and Jerom. this man should come into a court of judicature. or to bear record. unity of essence. in the beginning of it. and it is also said to be in an old British copy. and the Latin translation which bears the name of Jerom has it. or nature. by their being said to be one. this can be no proof of its not being genuine. and distinction from. and next under the character of a master. were all wanting. as before observed. since it might be in the original copy. before mentioned. in an epistle to Eustochium. or the Word. but there would be but one testifier. And. indeed. in the middle of the third century: and is manifestly referred to by Tertullian. first under the character of a Father. and have pushed hard to extirpate it from a place in the sacred writings. C. and is in the Vulgate Latin version of the London Polyglot Bible. and a Trinity of Persons. out of sixteen ancient copies of Robert Stephens's. They object. Yea. and not three. it appears plainly to be quoted by many of them. yet there was but one. inasmuch as they are "three". that they "agree in one". that it is wanting in the Syriac version. as well as its opposition to. of a son. A. and the book of Revelation. it is but a version. would be bore three times. even by Artemon.

the breath of his mouth. and caused them to rest in the land of Canaan. and his Word. "worketh hitherto and I work". and the protection and guidance of them through the wilderness to the land of Canaan. it is a divine work: "All scripture is given by inspiration of God". And as for the Holy Spirit he is not only said to move upon the face of the waters which covered the earth. where it is written as with a sunbeam. where mention is made of Jehovah. Job 26:13. 104:30) and all three may be seen together in one text. in the government of the world. (Ps. "All things were made by him. and the Redeemer of men. to do everything wisely and justly. in God's acts of grace towards and upon his people. "Who hath directed the Spirit of the Lord. 2a. and all the host of them by the breath of his mouth". "holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost". says Christ. a Trinity of Persons in the Godhead appears in the works of creation. showing love and pity to them. and Spirit. and grace. when it is observed that it is said. in all things respecting the office and work of Christ. and goodness to the children of Israel. but to garnish the heavens. (John 5:17) that is. "Have we not all one father? hath not one God created us?" (Mal. 33:6) "By the word of the Lord were the heavens made. and that the divine Word. But I shall not rest the proof of the doctrine of the Trinity on this single passage. and brought that unformed chaos of earth and water into a beautiful order. and practised by them. And particularly the three divine persons appear in that remarkable affair of providence. for the inference in it would not be clear. that God the Father is the maker of men. and to form the crooked serpent. as well as he is said to be sent forth yearly. in saving. which being the greatest. and renews the face of the earth at every returning spring. which is the foundation and source of spiritual knowledge. "My father". and showed to him the way of understanding?" to manage the important concerns of the world. according to which. Father. and without him was not anything made that is made" (John 1:3). "With whom took he counsel. 63:7-14) will easily observe. though thus provoked. for. and who instructed him and taught him in the path of judgment. and in 1 John 5:9 is a plain reference to the divine witnesses in this. and all the host of them. and yet. and in their worship and duties of religion enjoined them. 3:16) of God. 54:5) and of the Holy Spirit. the Leviathan. who is the husband of the church. and the breath of the almighty hath given me life" (Job 33:4). is put for all the fishes of the sea. and not to the exclusion of the Holy Spirit. 2:10) and the Son of God. 1:2. 2b. and in ordering and disposing of all things in it. in particular. and whom they vexed. to bespangle the firmament with stars of light. he led them on through the wilderness. Son. to the exclusion of the Father. Elihu in so many words says. and taught him knowledge. 27) none will doubt. in the affair of the government of the world. and all that are in them. and then of the Angel of his presence. (Isa. the eternal Logos. they have been jointly concerned in the works of providence. as follows. Ps. lovingkindness. in which both had an hand. (Gen. The inspiration of the scriptures is a wonderful instance of the grace and goodness of God to men. and next of his Holy Spirit. under which character the apostles addressed him as distinct from Christ his Son. which is little less than a creation. and is so called. (Acts 4:24. whom they rebelled against. "The Spirit of God hath made me. (2 Peter 1:21) yet no one surely will say. (2 Tim. this plurality was neither more nor fewer than three. that God the Father made the heavens. earth and sea. and though it is particularly ascribed to the Holy Spirit. A Trinity of persons appears in the works of providence.14). and of his Spirit. if there was no mention before made of a divine testimony. and carrying them all the days of old. but on the whole current and universal consent of scripture. ever since the works of creation were finished. Whoever reads attentively (Isa. 2c. redeeming. or Son of God. peace. 40:13. so in them are plain traces of a Trinity of persons. as all concerned in the making of the heavens. and of his mercy. was concerned in all this a question cannot be made of it. And as in the creation of man. the deliverance of Israel out of Egypt. a plurality has been observed. bearing. nor is there any reason to shut out the Son from a concern 152 . or being his counsellor hath taught him?" that is. as distinct from him. In the works of creation: as by these the eternal power and Godhead are made manifest. The three divine persons are to be discerned most clearly in all the works of grace. and to overrule all for the best ends and purposes (see Isa. is expressly said to be their maker. that mention is made of Jehovah. will not be objected to.following verse. providence. and comfort.

hath sent me". and messenger of it. the Rock of Israel spake to me". unto obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus". and that there is need of another divine person to make satisfaction for his offences. as the Redeemer and Saviour. Christ the Son of God. 2:13. who is said to be sent by Jehovah the Lord God. of no great moment whether it is believed or not. the Son of God. in the fulness of time was made of a woman. too mysterious and curious to be pried into. 3:1. as it may be rendered. 48:16) "Now the Lord God. the end to which they are chosen and called: but no where are these acts of grace more distinctly ascribed to each person than in the first chapter of the epistle to the Ephesians. and who is continued speaking to (Isa. often figuratively called the Rock. 11) and then the Holy Spirit. to the Spirit.14). as he is commonly styled. and in which the Holy Spirit is promised. The doctrine of the Trinity is often represented as a speculative point. where God the Father of Christ. is said to be the earnest of their inheritance. "For I am with you. the Messiah. and to which he agreed. in. "now I and myself have sent myself". 15) and they are all three mentioned together as concerned in this covenant. when ye came out of Egypt". see (Ps. 12:24. In the mission of him into this world on that account: he. or the application of salvation. to be the applier of the blessings and promises of it to those interested therein. he perceives there is a divine person that he has offended. and all the parts of it. and they are all to be met with in one passage. the God of Israel. and a third to sanctify him. 13) "I am the first and the last". 48:12. Those writings acquaint us with the covenant of grace. 7:22. sent to be the Saviour. according to "the word that I covenanted with you".herein. or rather. (at which time the covenant of grace was more clearly and largely revealed. into all the doctrines of the gospel. (Isa. Heb. mediator. saith the Lord of hosts". Ezek. to begin and carry on a work of grace in him. alas! it enters into the whole of our salvation. "with the Word" by whom I covenanted "with you. 14) where God the Father is said to choose men from the beginning unto salvation. and the Son. there is no doing without it. The same may be observed in (2 Thess. through sanctification of the Spirit. and it may be observed that the election of men to salvation is usually ascribed to the Father. but. Mal. by the Father and the Spirit. remaining and abiding. made from everlasting before the world was. is the means through which they are chosen. in whom they are accepted with him. this covenant was made by Jehovah the Father. 1:13. and into the experience of the saints. by agreement and consent. (Eph. 1:3-6) and where Christ is spoken of as the author of redemption through his blood. and sanctification. 3) where. there is the Father. the mighty God. 5) where. and the sanctification of the Spirit. 42:6. Jehovah the covenant maker. (Eph. as soon as ever a man is convinced of his sinful and miserable estate by nature. and whose hand laid the foundation of the earth. and the glory of the Lord Jesus Christ. the God of Israel said. and was made with his Son. and whose right hand spanned the heaven. and a justifying righteousness. this is affirmed by himself. and by his Spirit. in which we find the three divine persons. the Rock of Israel. (1 Peter 1:2) "Elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father. 48:16) and must be a divine person. it is said. is said to bless and choose his people in him before the foundation of the world. and in the same manner. and with whom he covenanted. and not one only. all the other penmen of the scriptures were. yea he is said to be the covenant itself. who condescended and agreed to be the surety. Isa. and to predestinate them to the adoption of children by him. and to make him meet for eternal glory and happiness. which entitles to the heavenly inheritance. 23:2. In the sacred writings. and we find all three dictating the writings David was the penman of: "The Spirit of the Lord spake by me. who spake by every inspired writer. 2d. or 153 .)"so my Spirit remaineth among you": where may be observed. (2 Sam. and his Word. 36:27. the economy of man's salvation is clearly exhibited to us. as Junius renders it. to see there was a performance and an application of all that was promised. for the encouragement of the people of Israel to work in rebuilding the temple. who therefore must be three distinct persons. John 16:14. or otherwise the sense must be. and his word was in tongue. in (Hag. was sent by agreement. and by whom they are sealed until they come to the full possession of it (Eph. take their distinct parts. redemption. 2:4. A Trinity of persons in the Godhead may be plainly discovered in all things relating to the office and work of Christ. (Isa. with his own consent. and the Spirit standing. and by the same persons David was inspired. besides the Spirit of the Lord. and whose part in it is. or the impetration of salvation. to the Son. in distinction from them both. and that it had better be let alone than meddled with. 1:7. no other writings do. even he who says. which includes forgiveness of sin. by. and his Spirit. 89:3. which is none at all.

the true Messiah. to become the sons of God. Acts 1:2) besides. as when he says. (Gal. in which there are plain traces of a Trinity of Persons. declaring him to be his beloved Son. (1 John 1:7) and it was "through the eternal Spirit" he offered himself to God. and the Spirit from them both. and the Holy Ghost. as the Son of God. who is prayed unto. and though he only took flesh. see (Ps. a second Person. see also Rom. 9:14) which some understand of the divine nature. or by faith in him. according to his own prediction. who took flesh of the Virgin. and he shall give you another Comforter" (John 14:16). Christ by his sufferings and death. (Rom. and an instance of the great love and abundant mercy of God. he rose again for their justification. the Son of God in human nature. that he would send the Holy Spirit. 3:30. (Heb. called therefore the Christ of God. 9:14) it is read. crying. 61:1. What gave the price a sufficient value was. there is the "highest". the mysterious incarnation is ascribed (Luke 1:32. whereby. in some copies of (Heb. God the Father raised him from the dead. 5:9). This was always reckoned so full and clear a proof of the Trinity of Persons in the Godhead. and dwelt among men. or the other thing. hence he is called the Spirit of adoption. Acts 10:38) when he was thirty years of age he was baptized of John in Jordan. being incarnate. the Son of God. and all three bear their part in this wonderful favour.35). Christ. as man. 4:6.became incarnate. John 1:14. God hath sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts. obtained eternal redemption for men. and which is sometimes ascribed to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. signified by the oil of gladness. his gifts and grace. 45:7. a way is opened. and the declaration of this mysterious affair to her by the angel. was of the Holy Ghost. by redemption wrought out by him. and the Son from the Father. what he was anointed with was the Holy Ghost. for the reception of this blessing. the Father provided a body for him in his purposes and decrees. his God. 17). who speaks so positively and authoritatively. and gave him glory. The price that was paid for it. the Comforter. and there learn the doctrine of the Trinity. John 1:12) and the Holy Spirit witnesses. the great Jehovah. Abba. 4:6) where the Father is spoken of as distinct from the Son. was paid to God the Father so it is said. 16) and all three appear in one text. and he it is that gives power to those that believe in him. who is one Person. Matthew 1:20) and in the message to the Virgin. 10:5. 5. according to the Spirit of holiness" or the Holy Spirit. shines in all the acts of grace towards or in men. mention is made distinctly of all the three Persons. 154 . their adoption to them. council and covenant. (1 Cor. 8:11). Regeneration is an evidence of adoption. 8:33) and it is not only by the righteousness of Christ that men are justified. the Son in human nature. "by the resurrection from the dead" (Rom. Jehovah the Father. 4:4. his prayer was always prevalent. in the act of justification. his gifts and graces without measure. and then there is another Comforter prayed for. (Heb. but he himself justifies by his knowledge. nor could he be a mere creature. "Because ye are sons. Again. the same may be observed in and in (John 15:26. the Word or Son was made flesh. by a voice from heaven. 16:7). and because he was so. the dignity of his person. 2e. "I will pray the Father. (1 John 3:1) and through the grace of Christ. without works. 8:15. but by the Spirit. the anointed. and the Holy Spirit. he was fitted and qualified for his office as Mediator. even the Spirit of truth. "through the Holy Spirit". 1:4. he shall give you. descending on him as a dove (Matthew 3:16. to whose overshadowing influence. where all the three divine persons appeared. This truth of a Trinity in the Godhead. 53:11) and it is the Spirit of God that pronounces the sentence of justification in the conscience of believers. (Rom. Here is God the Father of Christ. and "the Son of the highest". go to Jordan. (Gal. the grace of the Father in bestowing such a favour on any of the children of men. and that which was conceived in the Virgin. and by the Spirit of our God". Father". the Son of God. to them. as in (Matthew 12:28. praying. hence they are "justified in the name of the Lord Jesus. "hath redeemed us to God by thy blood" (Rev. submitting to the ordinance of baptism: the Father. is owned. (John 2:19) and was "declared to be the Son of God with power. through the divine nature. distinct from the Father and the Son. in which all the three persons were concerned. but it is not usual to say. (Isa. Isa. Christ did this. it is God the Father that justifies. or "the power of the highest". respecting this blessing of grace. Christ having suffered and died for men. (1 Peter 1:21) and he raised himself by his own power. he gave out various promises to his disciples. the three divine persons were concerned in this affair. was anointed with the Holy Ghost. by imputing the righteousness of his Son. The anointer is said to be God. and here is the Son in human nature. 6:11) in the act of adoption. that it was a common saying with the ancients. Before our Lord's sufferings and death.

Once more. prayer is made to the divine Spirit. is God.(1 Peter 1:3) and sometimes to the Son of God. 10:12) and in a formentioned text. p. 1 John 2:29) and sometimes to the Spirit of God. 8. 3:14) sometimes to Christ himself. distinct from them both. 7. as a distinct person. and of the Son. 2f. the third Person. need an increase of light. is ordered to be administered. as the earnest of their future glory. his happiness in himself must be the most perfect and complete. would give unto them the Spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of him. and performed by them. that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ. To which may be added. in the benedictory prayer of the apostle. the second Person. from the worship and duties of religion enjoined good men. (Eph. Zech. when done rightly. (John 3:3. 155 . which they receive from the Holy One. who are made light in the Lord. seems necessary from the nature of God himself. [4] See my Doctrine of the Trinity. and is administered. and his most complete happiness. prayer is made for them. 5) and all three are mentioned together in (Titus 3: 4-6) where God the Father called our Saviour. that the Father of Christ would strengthen them by his Spirit in the inward man. 124. distinct from them both: and whereas the saints need an increase of strength. (2 Cor. is said to save by the washing of regeneration. and petitions are directed sometimes to one Person. and by the Spirit. and sometimes to another. and the love of God. and Jesus Christ. signifies. the Spirit of wisdom is prayed for. s. God alone is to be invoked in prayer. that a plurality of Persons in the Godhead. in and through Christ. Amen. their unction. 1:21. prayer is made for them. but into three of equal honour and glory. sometimes to the first Person. as by Stephen. men are to be baptised in one name of three persons. but of three persons distinctly named and described. and given the earnest of the Spirit in our hearts". and which arises from the. and who are but one God. The ordinance of baptism. or anointing. Dissert. 3:5) where again the three divine Persons are plainly distinguished. (Eph. (Rev. (2 Thess. to direct the hearts of good men into the love of God. 11). and inexpressible communion the three Persons have with one another. but in society. 3:5) and sometimes to all three together. hence the three personal distinctions in Deity. (2 Cor. ENDNOTES: [1] In voce agiov. who regenerates and quickens whom he will. and patient waiting for Christ. (2 Thess. and the communion of the Holy Ghost. that is. be with you all". of a Trinity of Persons in the unity of the divine essence. and the renewing of the Holy Ghost. inconceivable. which grace of his is shed abroad in men through Jesus Christ our Saviour. the greatest and most perfect of Beings. (Acts 7:59) and sometimes to the Lord the Spirit. "Now he which establisheth us with you in Christ. and who may easily be discerned as distinct Persons. not of three names and characters. seem necessary to perfect happiness. and that for an increase in the knowledge of Christ. incomprehensible in being and unspeakable nearness they have to each other (John 10:38 14:10. as well as light. but not into one of three names. [3] Allix's Judgment of the Jewish Church. "The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ. in whom the saints are established and anointed. 6. 30. a very solemn part of divine worship. of Christ. Alting. as an ancient writer has observed. (Eph. 13:14) with which I shall conclude the proof from scripture. for as he is the best. 22) where God the Father is represented as the establisher and anointer. (Matthew 28:19) which are to be understood. p. (John 5:21. the Father of glory. prefixed to them. 4. Philolog. now happiness lies not in solitude. It plainly appears that there is a Trinity of persons in the Godhead. "in the name of the Father. which lies in that most glorious. who hath also sealed us. is from God the Father. 5) and whereas the saints. and hath anointed us. 3:14-16. 18) where the Father of Christ is prayed to. nor into three incarnates. and of the Holy Ghost". the God and Father of Christ. as the singular word "name". [2] Vid. 1:4. 1:17. and the Spirit.

p. 2. [18] Paedagog. 3. Vid. Bab. Trin. p. Ling. 1. p. Obj. [17] Adv. Betacot. Ficin. 1. s. 13. 184. 1120. Eccles. [10] In Philebo. Voss. 6. [16] De Unitat. p. & Gloss. 35. 109. Ascript. Arium. [12] Vid. l. [13] Vid. Bab. [19] Ignat. 255. 345. De Confus. ad Iubajan. 399. Deitat. 156 . Arian. in fine. 4. p. vol. p. [15] Contr. fol. p. 32. in ibid. Eccl. l. p. [8] See my Doctrine of the Trinity. Praxeam. l. 1122. & de Trinitate. [11] Works. c. Ed. p. Wittichii Theolog. 25. ad Theoph. 36. Pacific. [7] Kidder's Demonstration of the Messiah. c. 1117. p. 46. contr. c. fol. 17. fol. [9] tou poihswmen plhyov emfainontov. p. 90. 254. c. 378. 372. 344. 7.[5] Gloss. [6] T. 1112. [14] Respons. de Unit. edit. part 3. 1111. Epist. Socrat. 10. Hist. ad Philip. 100/ Ed. 1. Yebamot. 73. Parmenidem. in T. & in Ep.

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