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assertions are false ; for we find that the Predestination of God hath plainly made a difference between Infant and Infant. Rom. 9. 11, 12, 13.---That none is condemned for Original Sin, is also groundless, and contrary to the Scripture; for we read, Eph. 2. 3, that we were by nature children of wrath, even as others. It is mercy, that God will say to any that are in their blood and filthiness, Live. Who can quarrel with his Justice, that he should damn any, though he see nothing but Original Pollution in them? Among men we crush the Serpents’ Eggs before the Serpent be grown; and might not God destroy us for our Birth-Sin?'*

These quotations, we contend, fairly represent the spirit and intent of the Calvinistic doctrine of predestination. Election is personal and unconditional, without respect to age or any other distinctions, and where in any class of mankind there is election, there also is reprobatiou. This is the connexion of infant damnation with the essential vital principles of Calvinism,' of which we have spoken, and there is no dissolving it but by doing fatal violence to the whole system.

On looking back we find that we promised to cite as an authority for our positions, Rivet, one of the most celebrated of Calvinistic writers, who, says Dr Beecher, indignantly repelled the charge as I do,'—and Arthur Hildersham, whose praise is in all the churches. At the close of his Commentary on the thirteenth chapter of Hosea, Rivet discusses the question of the justice of the punishments inflicted upon infants. Wirb regard to the destruction of those of Samaria, he remarks ;

* This is at least indisputable ; that if taken out of this life before the use of reason, they were exempted from the danger of sinning and imitating their parents; therefore, if they were condemned to eternal punishments for their original sin, their DAMNATION ought to be of the lighter kind.'

Again, on the ninth chapter of the same prophet, vs. 11-13.

*It is for their own great advantage that they (infants) are often taken away by a premature death, lest they should multiply their sins by following their parents' example, and incur not only the loss of the body, but of the soul, or procure for themselves a GREATER DAMNATION.'

By a 'greater damnation,' Rivet means the punishment of actual sin superadded to the damnation which infants suffer for original sin alone.

The language of Arthur Hildersham is about as revolting as any which was ever ascribed to Calvinists, by that traditionary fiction, which, Dr Beecher tells us, for once retained a verbal accuracy of statement not surpassed by written documents. In the following extracts, we have the whelp of a wolf' again, to say nothing of that of a lion or a bear.

* Manton s Sermons, Vol. III. Serm. xxv. on Heb. xi. 6.

It is evident that God hath witnessed his wrath against the sin of infants, not only by hating their sin, but even their persons also. Rom. 9. 11. 13. And not only by inflicting temporal punishments upon them, but even by casting them into hell. For of those that perished in Sodom and Gomorrah, it is expressly said, Jude 7, that they were not only consumed with fire and brimstone, but that they suffered the vengeance of eternal fire. And the Apostle proving infants to be sinners by this argument, because death reigneth over them. Rom. 5. 14, showeth plainly, he meaneth not a temporal death only, but such as he calleth condemnation. ver. 16.'_“There is in them a natural proneness, disposition, and inclination to everything that is evil; as there is in the youngest whelp of a Lyon, or of a Bear, or of a Wolf, unto cruelty, or in the very egg of a cockatrice, before it be hatched.'— Against these damnable errors, [one of which is that all that die in their infancy shall certainly go to heaven, you have heard it evidently proved. 1. That all infants are sinners, and deserve

damnation. 2. That many infants have been vessels of wrath, and FIREBRANDS OF HELL.'*

If the reader is as tired of this whole subject as we are, he will rejoice to hear that we shall ask his indulgence for but one extract more. But this extract we regard as one of the most important in the whole controversy. It is from Wigglesworth's Day of Doom, a work repeatedly published in this country, and, according to Cotton Mather, in England; a work which was taught our fathers with their Catechisms, and which many an aged person with whom we are acquainted can still repeat, though they may not have met with a copy since they were in leading strings; a work which was hawked about the country printed on sheets like common ballads; and, in fine, a work which fairly represents the prevailing theology of New England at the time it was written, and which Mather thought might perhaps find our children till the day (of doom] itself arrives. Wigglesworth was the minister of Malden, and a 'fellow and tutor, as Cotton Mather calls him, in Harvard College. The poem describes the transactions of the last day, and the little reprobates talk so well, and their arguments are taken off'so Calvinistically, that we shall give the whole account of their appearance at the bar, their defence, and final condemnation. It is as follows. First, according to a marginal note, reprobate infants plead for themselves.'

Then to the bar all they drew near

Who did in infancy,
And never had or good or bad

Effected personally;
But from the womb unto the tomb

Were straightway carried,
(Or at the last ere they transgress'd)

Who thus began to plead:
* Hildersham's Lectures on the LI. Ps. pp. 280, 281. Ed. 1635.
VOL V.-NO. VI.

70

6

«« If for our transgression,

Or disobedience,
We here did stand at thy LEFT HAND,

Just were the recompense :
But Adam's guilt our souls hath spilt,

His fault is charg'd on us ;
And that alone hath overthrown,

And utterly undone us.
"“Not we, but he, ate of the tree,

Whose fruit was interdicted;
Yet on us all of his sad fall,

The punishment 's inflicted;
How could we sin that had not been,

Or how is his sin our
Without consent, which to prevent,

We never had a power?
«« O great Creator, why was our nature

Depraved and forlorn ?
Why so defild, and made so vile

Whilst we were yet unborn ?
If it be just, and needs we must

Transgressors reckon'd be,
Thy mercy, Lord, to us afford,

Which sinners hath set free.
• “Behold we see Adam set free,

And sav'd from his trespass,
Whose sinful fall hath split us all,

And brought us to this pass.
Canst thou deny us once to try,
Or

grace to us to tender,
When he finds grace before thy face,

That was the chief offender"

Another marginal note tells us that their "arguments are taken off,' by the Judge, thus ;

“Then answered the Judge most dread,

God doth such doom forbid,
That men should die eternally

For what they never did.
But what you call old Adam's fall,

And only his trespass,
You call amiss to call it his,

Both his and yours it was.
"" He was design'd of all mankind

To be a public head,
A common root, whence all should shoot,

And stood in all their stead.
He stood and fell, did ill or well,

Not for himself alone,
But for you all, who now his fall,

And trespass would disown.

6"If he had stood, then all his brood

Had been established
In God's true love, never to move,

Nor once awry to tread;
Then all his race, my Father's grace,

Should have enjoy'd forever,
And wicked sprights by subtle slights

Could them have harmed never. «“Would you have griev'd to have receiv'd

Through Adam so much good,
As had been your for evermore,

If he at first had stood ?
Would you have said, we ne'er obey'd

Nor did thy laws regard;
It ill befits with benefits,

Us, Lord, so to reward ?
6" Since then to share in his welfare,

You could have been content,
You may with reason share in his treason,

And in the punishment.
Hence you were born in state forlorn,

With natures so depraved ;
Death was your due, because that you

Had thus yourselves behaved. 66 You think if we had been as he,

Whom God did so betrust,
We to our cost, would ne'er have lost,

All for a paltry lust.
Had you been made in Adam's stead,

You would like things have wrought,
And so into the self same woe,

Yourselves and yours have brought. 6“ I may deny you once to try,

Or grace to you to tender,
Though he finds grace before my face,

Who was the chief offender;
Else should my grace cease to be grace,

For it should not be free,
If to release whom I should please,

I have not liberty.
“ If upon one what's due to none

I frankly shall bestow,
And on the rest shall not think best,

Compassion's skirts to throw,
Whom injure I? will you envy,

And grudge at others' weal?
Or me accuse, who do refuse

Yourselves to help and heal? 66 Am I alone of what's my own,

No master or no Lord ?
Or if I am, how can you claim

What I to some afford ?

Will you demand grace at my hand,

And challenge what is mine?
Will you teach me whom to set free,

And thus my grace confine ?
666 You sinners are, and such a share

As sinners may expect,
Such
you

shall have ; for I do save
None but my own elect.
Yet to compare your sin with their

Who liv'd a longer time,
I do confess yours is much less,

Though every sin's a crime.
66 A crime it is, therefore in bliss

You may not hope to dwell;
But unto you I shall allow

The easiest room in hell."
The glorious King thus answ

swering,
They cease and plead no longer :
Their consciences must needs confess

His reasons are the stronger.
Thus all men's pleas the Judge with ease

Doth answer and confute,
Until that all, both great and small,

Are silenced and mute.
Vain hopes are cropt, all mouths are stop't,

Sinners have nought to say,
But that 'tis just, and equal most

They should be DAMN’D FOR AY.' What Wigglesworth thought of the easiest room in hell,' may be gathered from the following stanza.

* But who can tell the plagues of Hell,

And torments exquisite ?
Who can relate their dismal state,

And terrours infinite ?
Who fare the best, and feel the least,

Yet feel that punishment,
Whereby to nought they should be brought

If God did not prevent.' *

We have thus followed our learned author through his wider range,' and seen how happily he has succeeded in establishing the negative' he so rashly volunteered to prove.' The doctrine of infant damnation is certainly no very comfortable appendage to any system, and we do not wonder that Calvinists are anxious to shake it off from theirs. In all ages it has been as gall and wormwood to many, if not to most of their party. Still we have seen that Austin, the father of the system, Fulgentius, his pupil, and an innumerable host of his followers in the early

Wigglesworth, Day of Doom, stanzas 166—182, and 212, sixth edition, 1715. This work has lately been republished in Boston.

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