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know, that good works are as necessary to his final acquittal, by the sentence of his Saviour, before assembled worlds, as a lively Faith in the Saviour is to his present justification before God.-Sixth. Though Faith does not justify as a principle of holiness, for this would be Justification not by Christ's Atonement, but by our own Sanctification, yet the Faith of the Gospel is a holy principle, and by this it is distinguished from a mere assent to the doctrines of Christianity, which leaves the heart unregenerated and the conduct uninfluenced by them. This last sort of faith, St. James calls the faith of devils, because it consists with the most atrocious guilt, and with the most deliberate rebellion. Those Ministers of Christianity who are the most zealous in preaching Justification by Faith in the Saviour, are generally most guarded in securing the doctrine against abuse, by directing their hearers to form the estimate of the sincerity of their Faith, from the purity of their principles, and the sincerity of their obedience ; and by teaching that no Faith is genuine which does not purify the beart and the life, and work by love to God and man, disposing men to “adorn the Gospel by living soberly, righteously, and godly in this presentevil world.”_Seventh. It is a fact acknowledged by those who have been decidedly inimical to the doctrine of Justification by Faith only, that those who adopt it, place the glory of God, not only in the first rank, but in the first place in the first rank of those duties which are the impulsive motives of Christian action. To do all to the glory of God, is a proposition they apply not only to the services of religion, but also to the government, and to the indulgence of those appetites which, for the wisest purposes, are implanted in the human frame. “ Whether ye eat or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God.” Now, good works « Let your
are those fruits which in the highest degree conduce to promote the honour of God, and the glory of that religion which came from him. “ Herehy is my Fathet giorified, that ye bring forth much fruit." light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your father who is in Heaven.” He who does not venerate, with supreme affection, the dignity and honour of him whom he calls his Heavenly Father, must be a stranger to that intercommunity of tenderness, which 'such a relation tends to impress. He must be an alien, not a Son of God.--Eighth. The love of God and of the Saviour rises immediately out of that Faith by which a Christian is justified. Faith worketh by love, so that love to God is not only a great and powerful principle in the Christian's breast, but also a principle that his Faith kindles, and supplies with a constant and holy flame. But the love of God is not only a powerful feeling, but a fixed principle, which disposes Christians to please God, and to do his will, in all things. This is the love of God that we do his commandments; and our blessed Saviour has placed this as the only decisive evidence of our gratitude to him, for his dying love. “If ye love me, keep my commandments." Faith in that righteousness which -is by Jesus Christ on all them who receive the Gospel, tends, above all other considerations, to awaken and to inflame that fire which burns with a sacred beat in the heart of a Christian. That sort of obedience which the fear of hell, or which the hope of making a good bargain with God, (that a man, as Dr. South observes, may have a good penny-worth for his penny,) will never inspire the mind with any generous feelings, or with any exalted sentiments of love and obedience. Every thing that is above his selfish principles, is beyond his aims. But the Christian, to whom much has been forgiven, will love much. In him the remembrance of the Garden of Gethse:nane, and of mount Calvary, will create motives of action, and invigorate them with an energy that will rise as much superior to those of selfishness, as the heavens rise above the earth. Mount Sinai, with its blackness, and thunder, and tempest, has every thing to blast, but nothing to fertilize, or to water the parched shrubs that cling to its thirsty soil. Like mount Gilboa, it gives no rain, or dew, or fields of offerings. It is on the hills of Zion alone that the dews of Hermon fall, and it is there that God commands the blessing, even life for evermore.
ARTICLE XVII. OF PREDESTINATION AND ELECTIOX.
Predestination to life is the everlasting purpose of God, whereby (before the foundations of the world were laid) he hath constantly decreed by his council, secret to us, to deliver from curse and damnation those whom he hath chosen in Christ out of mankind, and to bring them by Christ to everlasting salvation, as vessels made to bo. nour. Wherefore they which be indued with so excellent a benefit of God, be called according to God's parpose, by his Spirit working in due season. They through grace obey the calling; they be justified freely, they be made sons of God by adoption, they be made like the image of his only begotten Son Jesus Christ; they walk religiously in good works; and at length, by God's wer. cy, they attain to everlasting felicity.
“ As the godly consideration of Predestination, and our Election in Christ, is full of sweet, pleasant, and unspeak. able comfort to godly persons, and such as feel in thenselves the working of the Spirit of Christ, mortifying the works of the flesh, and their earthly members, and drawing up their mind to high and heavenly things, as well because it doth greatly establish and confirm their
faith of eternal salvation to be enjoyed through Christ, as because it doth fervently kindle their love towards God : 80 for curious and carnal persons, lacking the Spirit of Christ, to have continually before their eyes the sentence of God's predestination, is a most dangeroņs downfal, whereby the devil doth thrust them either into desperation, or into wretchlessness of most unclean living, no less perilous than desperation.
“. Furthermore, we must receive God's promises in such wise as they be generally set forth to us in holy Scripture ; and, in our doings, that will of God is to be followed, · which we have expressly declared unto us, in the word of God.”
Never was beleagured city attacked and defended with greater obstinacy, than the intent of this Article. The Calvinists of the Church have considered it as the firm bulwark of their cause, and as presenting an impregnable front to all the artillery of their enemies. The Arminians have also taken up their post in it, and thought themselves sufficiently safe in its intrenchments to hoist the flag of defiance, and even to attack their opponents. Thus, all the war between these two parties has been transferred to this, as the citadel where the last battle is to be fought, and conquest, or defeat, to crown or to disgrace, the victors and the vanquished. It has occurred to a few, and but to a few, that by a friendly compromise, they might meet on common ground ; and so far adjust their opposite claims, as to give and take mutual quarter. This observation, however, can apply only to those who
are equally the friends of Evangelical Religion. Those who to their sentiments are directly at issue on the interpretation of the ninth, tenih, eleventh, and thirteenth Articles, cannot fiod a spot of undebateable ground, in the whole Loompass of this Article. • The Calvinists have attempted to prore, and certaioly have succeeded in proving, that the private sentiments of those who compiled the Articles, were so far Calvinistic, as decidedly to embrace the doctrine of Absolute Election, and its necessary consequence, the doetrine of Final Per. severance. To those who are conversant with the wri. tings of the most distinguished Divines (with the exception of Latimer) of the Church of England, from the reign of Edward down to that of James, no other proof is necessary to convince them of the fact. Those who have not attained to an extensive acquaintance with the writiogs of the Fathers and founders of the English Church, may obtain much satisfaction from the celebrated work of Mr. Overton, “The True Churchman ascertained.” In the second Section of the second Chapter of that work, Mr. Overton has produced the testimonies of Hume, Mosheim, the Editors of the New Annual Register, the Critical Reviewers, Dr. Robertson, Bishop Burnet, and of Drs. Maclaine, Wilson, Smollet, &c. none of whom were Calvinists themselves, but barely relate the matter on their credit, as critics, or historiaps. To the testimony of the opponents of Calvinism, he adds that of its friends, of Davenant, Carleton, Hall, Ward, Usher, and Whitaker, who, he adds,“ both held these sentiments themselves, and are unanimous in declaring that they were the common sentiments of the founders of our Church."
Dr. Heylin, a celebrated Arminian, and by no means an impartial wri. ter, acknowledges that in the Reforners of the English