Imágenes de páginas

"in the Lord shall be as Mount Sion, which cannot be re"moved, but standeth fast for ever."' "The path of the just "is as the shining light, which shineth more and more unto the "perfect day."' "A just man falleth seven times, and riseth "up again: but the wicked shall fall into mischief."3 "I will "bring the blind by a way that they knew not; I will lead them "in paths that they have not known: I will make darkness "light before them, and crooked things straight. These things "will I do unto them, and not forsake them." "Israel shall be "saved in the Lord with an everlasting salvation: ye shall not "be ashamed or confounded, world without end."' "For the "mountains shall depart, and the hills shall be removed: but "my kindness shall not depart from thee; neither the covenant "of my peace be removed, saith the Lord that hath mercy upon "thee."' "I will make an everlasting covenant with them, "that I will not turn away from them to do them good: I will "put my fear into their hearts, that they shall not depart from "me."1

If these texts are not a full proof, that all the special points of doctrine now called Calvinistic are found in the Old Testament; (and if so, certainly in the New ;) it cannot be denied, that so many passages, on each of these points, are not to be found in any writings of the Anticalvinists: and that, in quoting many of them, they would deem it indispensable to add some comment, to prevent their readers from misapprehending them, and supposing them to mean any thing Calvinistic. I am confident, therefore, that I have proved some intimations of all these tenets to be coeval with every part of revelation: and, as to any subsequent history of them, it may be useful, as other ecclesiastical history is, for various purposes, but it proves nothing at all concerning the truth or falsehood of them. "To "the law and to the testimony."

'P». cxxv. 1. * Prov. iv. 18. John iv. 14.

J Prov. xxiv. 16. * Isa. xlii. 16. xlv. 17.

'Isa. liv. 9, 10. • Jer. xxxii. 40.

N° II.



'She' was first chosen of God, and called by grace, both to 'know her sin, and also to hear the word of faith, health, and 'glad tidings of mercy in Christ, and faith was given her to 'believe, and the Spirit of God loosed her heart from the 'bondage of sin.—Then consented she to the will of God again, 'and above all things had delectation to hear the word, wherein 'she had obtained everlasting health, and namely, of his own 'mouth which had purchased so great mercy for her.—God 'chooseth us first, and openeth our eyes to see his abundant 'love to us in Christ; and then love we again, and accept his 'will above all things, and serve him in that office whereunto 'he hath chosen us.'Q—' Though God's elect cannot so fall, 'that they rise not again;—yet they forget themselves oft'times, and sink down into trances, and fall asleep in their lusts 'for a season.—But, as soon as they are awaked, they repent, 'and come again without resistance. God now and then with'draweth his hand, and leaveth them unto their own strength, 'to make them feel, that there is no power in them to do good, 'but of God only; lest they should be proud of that which is 'none of theirs.'—' Peter, as soon as he had denied Christ, • came to himself immediately, and went out, and wept bitterly 'for sorrow. And thus ye see that " his faith failed not," though 'it were oppressed for a time.''—' Moreover therewith,' (namely with good works,) ' the goodness, favour, and gifts of God, 'which are in thee, not only shall be made known to others, 'but also unto thine ownself: and thou shall be sure that thy

"Luke x. 38—42.
* Tiudal, Vol. i. p. 123, Fathers of the English church.
'Ibid. Vol.i. p.264—267, Fathers, &c.

'faith is right, and that the true Spirit of God is in thee, and
'that thou art called and chosen of God unto eternal life, and
'loosed from the bonds of Satan, whose captive thou wast: as
'Peter exhorteth,—through good works " to make our calling
"and election (wherewith we are called and chosen of God,)
"sure." . For how dare a man presume to think, that his
'faith is right, and that God's favour is on him, and that God's
'Spirit is in him, when he feeleth not the working of the Spirit,
'nor himself inclined to any godly thing?'1—' In the ninth,
'tenth, and eleventh chapters' (of Romans) 'he,' (Paul)' teach-
'eth of God's predestination, whence it springeth altogether,
'whether we shall believe, or not believe, be loosed from sin, or
'not be loosed. By which predestination, our justifying and
'our salvation are wholly taken out of our hands, and put into
'the hands of God only: which thing is most necessary of all.
'For we are so weak and so uncertain, that if it stood in us,
'there would of a truth no man be saved; the devil no doubt
'would deceive us. But now God is sure, his predestination
'cannot deceive him; neither can any man withstand or let
'him; and therefore have we hope and trust against sin. But
'here a mark must be set unto those unquiet, busy, and high
'climbing spirits, how far they shall go; which begin first from
'on high to search the bottomless secrets of God's predestina-
'tion; whether they be predestinate, or not. These must ueeds
'either cast themselves down headlong into desperation, or else
'commit themselves to free chance careless.' But follow thou
'the order of this epistle, and noosel thyself with Christ,' (or
take refuge in Christ, and cleave close to him, as a child to his
mother's bosom,) ' and learn to understand what the law and
'the gospel mean, and the office of both the two: that thou
'mayest in the one know thyself, and that thou hast of thyself
'no strength, but to sin; and in the other the grace of Christ:
'and then see that thou fight against sin and the flesh, as the
'seven first chapters teach them. After when thou art come to
'the eighth chapter, and art under the cross and tribulation,
* the necessity of predestination will wax sweet, and thou shall
'feel how precious a thing it is. For except thou hast borne
'the cross of adversity and temptation; and hast felt thyself

'Tindal, Vol. i. p. 95.
» Compare this with the latter part of our 17th article.

brought unto the very brim of desperation, yea, and untohell'gates,' (that is, unless thou hast been led to despair of saving thyself; and been convinced, that thou deservest to perish;) 'thou canst never meddle with the sentence of predestination, 'without thine own harm, and without secret wrath and grudg'ing inwardly against God; for otherwise it shall not be pos'sible for thee to think that God is righteous and just.—Therefore , 'must Adam be well mortified, and the fleshly wit brought 'utterly to nought, ere that thou mayest away with this thing, 'and drink so strong wine.—Take heed therefore unto thyself, 'that thou drink not wine, while thou art yet but a suckling. 'For every learning hath her time, measure, and age: and in 'Christ there is a certain childhood, in which a man must be 'content with milk for a season; until he wax strong, and grow 'up, unto a perfect man in Christ, and be able to eat of more 'strong meat.''

Tindal was one of the first of our reformers, and spent a great part of his life in translating the scriptures: and, as it appears to me, he had acquired more scriptural views of these doctrines, than the reformers on the continent attained, who were versed in the study of the schoolmen. If these quotations be not Calvinistic; the evangelical clergy, in general, are not so: and we are not ambitious of a name which is thought to bring us under an obligation to call Calvin master, and to adopt all his sentiments.—But many, other quotations from persons less distinguished must be omitted: and a few selected from the more eminent characters concerned, in the reformation of our church, before the days of Mary.


'This article speaketh only of the elect, in whom finally no 'fault shall be; but they shall perpetually continue and endure.' —' Likewise the elect shall not wilfully and obstinately with'stand God's calling.' 'The elect will follow Christ's precepts, 'and repent and rise again when they fall.' 'In my judgment, 'it were better to say, The elect shall follow Christ's precepts; 'or when they fall, yet they shall repent and rise again, and 'obtain remission.'—' The true and faithful man endeavoureth 'to conform his will to God's will in all things, and to walk right 'forth in all his precepts, and where by infirmity he chanceth to 1 Tindal, Vol. i. 66, 67, Fathers, &c.

'fall, he lieth not still, but by God's help riseth again.'1 'We, 'wretched sinners, do not prevent God, and go before him in 'the work of our justification: but it is God that layeth the first 'foundation of our salvation. He beginneth with us, and first 'sendeth us his gospel.'—' God also openeth our hearts, that 'we may listen and give credit to his holy preachers, as Christ 'himself saith, " Ye have not first chosen me, but I have chosen 'you."' 'Now, forasmuch as God hath thus called us to the 'faith, and by faith hath given light in our hearts, &c.;' 'God 'must begin, and call us by his word, and put faith in our 'hearts; or else we should never ask any thing from him." 'As the well and head, out of which all these evils do spring, is 'Original Sin, in the which we were conceived and formed in 'our mother's womb; whereby man's reason is so blinded, that 'of himself he cannot know God nor his word. And man's will 'is also by this sin so poisoned, that he doth not obey the will 'of God, nor keep his commandments. Now because man's 4 reason is blinded, it is easy for the devil to lead man to all 'errors, as idolatry, heresies, witchcrafts, enchantments, and to 'all kinds of superstitions and false doctrines. And these of'fences God doth punish with divers and grievous plagues; as 'with pride, envy, contention, slandering, lying, railing, trouble 'and unquietness of conscience, fear and pensiveness of mind, 'and such like; which vices so torment and gnaw our hearts, 1 that they daily waste and consume us. And hereof ensue 'divers diseases, sicknesses, and infirmities; and at length 'death itself.' *


'Let us pray therefore unto God, that he would drive out of 'their hearts this darkness of errors, and make the light of his 'truth to shine unto them; that they, acknowledging their 'blindness, may with all humble repentance be converted unto 'the Lord, &c.'—' Be ye sure, that no man can take us out of 'the Father's hands; for he is greater than all; who " hath not 'spared his own Son, but hath given him" to death, " for us 'all; and therefore, how shall he not with him give us all 'things also.—Who shall lay any thing to the charge of God's

'Cranmer. Annotation ou the king's book, A. D. 1537, Vol. iii. p. 88, 89, Fathers, &c. 'Catechism, 1748, Cranmer.

'Catechism, 1748, Cranmer, Vol. iii. r>. 287, 288.

« AnteriorContinuar »