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third nor second sun, at least within the same vortex: but though there be not, yet there might have been ; neither in the unity of the solar nature is there any repugnancy to plurality; for that God which made this world, and in this “the sun to rule the day,” might have made another world by the same fecundity of his omnipotency, and another sun to rule in that. Whereas in the divine nature there is an intrinsical and essential singularity, because no other being can have any existence but from that; and whatsoever essence bath its existence from another is not God. “ I am the Lord (saith he), and there is none else, there is no God besides me: that they may know from the rising of the sun, and from the west, that there is none besides me, I am the Lord, and there is none else.” (Isa. xlv. 5, 6. Deut. iv. 35. and xxxii. 39. Psal. xviii. 31.) He who hath infinite knowledge knoweth no other God beside himself. “Is there a God besides me? yea, there is no God, I know not any.” (Isa. xlv. 18. 21, 22. and xliv. 8.) And we who believe in him, and desire to enjoy him, need for that end to know no other God but him: "For this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God;” (John xvii. 3.)* as certainly one, as God.
It is necessary thus to believe the unity of the Godhead, that being assured there is a nature worthy of our devotions, and challenging our religious subjection, we may learn to know whose that nature is to which we owe our adorations, lest our minds should wander and fluctuate in our worship about various and uncertain objects. If we should apprehend more gods than one, I know not what could determine us in any instant to the actual adoration of any one : for where no difference doth appear (as, if there were many, and all by nature gods, there could be none), what inclination could we have, what reason could we imagine, to prefer or elect any one before the rest for the object of our devotions ? Thus is it necessary to believe the unity of God in respect of us who are obliged to worship him.
Secondly, It is necessary to believe the unity of God in respect of him who is to be worshipped. Without this acknowledgment we cannot give unto God the things which are God's, it being part of the worship and honour due unto God, to accept of no compartner with him. When the Law was given, in the observance whereof the religion of the Israelites con
· Veritas Christiana districte pronunciarit, Deus si non unus est, non est ; quia dignius credimus non esse, quodcunque non ita fuerit ut esse debebit.' Tertull. adv. Marcion, I. i. c. 3. •Deus cum summum magnum sit, recte veritas nostra pronunciavit, Deus si non unus est, non est. Non quasi dubitemus esse Deum, di. cendo, si non unus, non est Deus; sed
quia, quem confidimus esse, idem definiamus esse, quod si non est, Deus non est, summum scilicet maguum. Porro, summum magnum unicum sit necesse est, ergo et Deus unicus erit, non aliter Deus, pisi summum magnum ; nec aliter summum magpum, nisi parem non habens; nec aliter parem non habens, nisi unicus fuerit.' Ibid.
sisted, the first precept was this prohibition, "Thou shalt have no other gods before me ;" (Exod. xx. 3.) and whosoever violateth this, denieth the foundation on which all the rest depend, as the * Jews observe. This is the true reason of that strict precept by which all are commanded to give divine worship to God only, " Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve;” (Matt. iv. 10.) because he alone is God: him only shalt thou fear, because he alone hath infinite power; in him only shalt thou trust, because “he only is our rock and our salvation;” (Psal. Ixii. 2.) to him alone shalt thou direct thy devotions, because “ hé only knoweth the hearts of the children of men.” (2 Chron. vi. 30.) Upon this foundation the whole heart of man is entirely required of him, and engaged to him. “ Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God is one God: And (or rather, Therefore) thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might.” (Deut. vi. 4, 5.) Whosoever were truly and by nature God, could not choose but challenge our love upon the ground of an infinite excellency, and transcendent beauty of holiness; and therefore if there were more Gods than one, our love must necessarily be terminated unto + more than one, and consequently divided between them; and as our love, so also the proper effect thereof, our cheerful and ready obedience, which, like the child propounded to the judgment of Solomon, as soon as it is divided, is destroyed. can serve two masters : for either he will hate the one, and love the other: or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other.” (Matt. vi. 24.)
Having thus described the first notion of a God, having demonstrated the existence and unity of that God, and having in these three particulars comprised all which can be contained in this part of the Article, we may now clearly deliver, and every particular Christian understand, what it is he says when he makes his confession in these words, I believe in God: which in correspondence with the precedent discourse may be thus expressed :
Forasmuch as by all things created is made known the “eternal power and Godhead,” (Rom. i. 20.) and the dependency of all limited beings infers an infinite and independent essence; whereas all things are for some end, and all their operations directed to it, although they cannot apprehend that end for which they are, and in prosecution of which they
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work, and therefore must be guided by some universal and overruling wisdom; being this collection is so evident, that all the nations of the earth have made it; being God hath not only written himself in the lively characters of his creatures, but hath also made frequent patefactions of his Deity by most infallible predictions and supernatural operations : therefore I fully assent unto, freely acknowledge, and clearly profess, this truth, that there is a God.
Again, being a prime and independent Being supposeth all other to depend, and consequently no other to be God; being the entire fountain of all perfections is incapable of a double head, and the most perfect government of the Universe speaks the supreme dominion of one absolute Lord; hence do 'I acknowledge that God to be but one, and in this unity, or rather singularity of the Godhead, excluding all actual or possible multiplication of a Deity, I BELIEVE IN God.
I BELIEVE IN God the Father. After the confession of a Deity, and assertion of the divine unity, the next consideration is concerning God's paternity; for that “one God is Father of all,” (Eph. iv. 6.) and “ to us there is but one God, the Father.” (1 Cor. viii. 6.)
Now, although the Christian notion of the Divine paternity be some way peculiar to the evangelical patefaction ; yet* wheresoever God hath been acknowledged, he hath been understood and worshipped as a Father : the very heathent poets so describe their gods, and their vulgar names did carry fathert in them, as the most popular and universal notion.
This name of Father is a relative; and the proper foundation of paternity, as of a relation, is generation. As therefore the phrase of generating is diversely attributed unto several acts of the saine nature with generation properly taken, or by consequence attending on it; so the title of Father is given unto divers persons or things, and for several reasons unto the same God.
“ These are the generations of the heavens and the earth, when they were created, in the day that the Lord
• Omnem Deum qui ab homine colitur, necesse est inter solennes ritus et precationes Patrem nuncupari ; non tantum bonoris gratia, sed et rationis, et quod antiquior est homine, et quod vitam, salutem, victum præstat, ut pater. Itaque et Jupiter a precantibus Pater vocatur, et Saturnus, et Janus, et Liber, et cæteri deinceps.' Lactan. de ver. Sap. 1. iv. c. 3.
+ That so frequent in Homer, matig ανδρών τε θεών τε' « eundemque appellans dicit Ennius: Divumque hominumque pater rex.' Var, de L. L. I. iv. p. 18. ed. 1581. As Servius observes of Virgil : A poeta pene omnibus Diis nomen Pa
ternum additur, ut fiant venerabiliores:'
As Jupiter, which is Jovis Pater, or Ζευπάτωρ, otherwise Diespiter, or Διϊπάτης: and Marspiter, of whom Servius, ' apud Pontifices Marspiter dicitur,' Æneid. l. iii. v. 35.
So Semipater for Semo, and Eapdoátwp for Surdus, the proper Deity of Sardinia. Ptolem.
God made the earth and heavens,” (Gen. ii. 4.) saith Moses. So that the creation or production of any thing by which it is, and before was not, is a kind of generation, and consequently the creator or producer of it a kind of Father. Hath the rain a Father? Or who hath begotten the drops of 'dew ?” (Job xxxviii. 28.) by which words Job signifies, that as there is no other cause assignable of the rain but God, so may he as the cause be called the Father of it, though not in the most proper sense,* as he is the Father of his Son: and so the + philosophers of old, who thought that God did make the world, called him expressly, as the Maker, so the Father of it. And thus "to us there is but one God, the Father, of whom are all things;" (1 Cor. viii. 6.) to which the words following in the Creed may seem to have relation, the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth. But in this mass of creatures and body of the Universe, some works of the creation more properly call him Father, as being more rightly sons : such are all the rational and intellectual offspring of the Deity. Of merely natural beings and irrational agents he is the creator ; of rational, as so, the Father also: they are his creatures, these his sons. Hence he is styled the “ Father of spirits.” (Heb. xii.9.) and the blessed angels, when he laid the foundations of the earth, his sons; “ When the morning stars sang together, and all the sons of God shouted for joy” (Job xxxviii. 7.) hence man, whom he created after his own image, is called his “offspring,” (Acts xvii. 28.) and Adam, the immediate work of his hands, “ the son of God :” (Luke iii. 38.) hence may we all cry out with the Israelites taught by the prophet so to speak, “Have we not all one Father?' Hath not one God created us?” (Malac. ii. 10.) Thus the first and most universal notion of God's paternity in a borrowed or metaphorical sense is founded rather upon creation than procreation.
Unto this act of creation is annexed that of conservation, by which Gui doth uphold and preserve in being that which at first he maue, and to which he gave its being. As there
“Ετέρως γάρ τις υετου πατέρα Θεόν acuti, rei stipes vigū. Severus, Cat. Patr. in Job. c. 26. p. 551.
+ Plutarch of Plato, calling God Tτέρα σάντων και ποιητήν, says: τη μεταφορά χράμενος, ώσπερ είωθε, τον αίτιον πατέρα του risusu xéxinxs. Platon, Quast. ii. And AlCinιus: πατήρ δέ έστι τα αίτιος είναι πάντων.
So Flutarch answers the question, why Plato terms God the Maker and Father of all things: H των μεν Θεών των γεννητών και των ανθρώπων πατήρ έστι: ποιητης δε των αλόγων και αψύχων. Father of gods and men, Maker of all things inanimate and irrational. ου γας χορίου, φησί Χρύσιππος, πατέρα καλείσθαι τον παρασχόντα το σπέρμα, καίπερ εκ του σπέρματος γεγονότος.
Non enim agri pater, si Chrysippo credimus, is dicitur qui eum consevit, quanquam e seanine deinde fruges nascuntur : as the Latin translation most absurdly. Ibid. For there is neither corn, nor field, nor any seed belonging to them, in the words of Plutarch. But xógio (not xurgiov) is the secunda, the coat (or rather coats in the acceptation of Chrysippus, and the language of those times) in which the fætus is involved in the mother's womb. Though therefore both the secundu and the fætus be made of the seed of the male in the philosophy of Chrysippus, yet he is not called the father of the after-birth, but of the child; the one being endued with life and reason, and the other not.
fore it is the duty of the parent to educate and preserve the child as that which had its being from him ; so this paternal education doth give the name of * Father unto man, and conservation gives the same to God.
Again, redemption from a state of misery, by which a people hath become worse than nothing, unto a happy condition, is a kind of generation, which joined with love, care, and indulgence in the Redeemer, is sufficient to found a new paternity, and give him another title of a Father. Well might Moses tell the people of Israel, now brought out of the land of Egypt from their brick and straw, unto their quails and manna, unto their milk and honey, “Is not he thy Father that hath bought thee? hath he not made thee, and established thee?” (Deut. xxxii. 6.) Well might God speak unto the same people as to “his son, even his first-born,” (Exod. iv. 22.) “ Thus saith the Lord thy Redeemer, and he that formed thee from the womb, Hearken unto me, O house of Jacob, and all the remnant of the house of Israel, which are borne by me from the belly, which are carried from the wornb.” (Isa. xliv. 24. xlvi. 3.) And just is the acknowledgment made by that people instructed by the prophet, “ Doubtless thou art our Father, though Abraham be ignorant of us, and Israel acknowledge us not; thou, O Lord, art our Father, our Redeemer, from everlasting is thy name.” (Isa. lxiii. 16.) And thus another kind of paternal relation of God unto the sons of men is founded on a restitution or temporal redemption.
Besides, if to be born causeth relation to a father, then to be born again maketh an addition of another: and if to generate foundeth, then to regenerate addeth a paternity. Now though we cannot“ enter the second time into our mother's womb,” nor pass through the same door into the scene of life again ; yet we believe and are persuaded that "except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.” (John iii. 4. 3.) A double birth there is, and the worldt consists of two, the first and the second man.
And though the incorruptible seed be the word of God, and the dispensers of it in some sense may say, as St. Paul spake unto the Corinthians, “I have begotten you through the Gospel:” (1 Cor. iv. 15.) yet he is the true Father, whose word it is, and that is God, even “ the Father of lights, who of his own will begat us with the word of truth.” (James i. 17, 18.) Thus “ whosoever believeth that Jesus is the Christ, is born of God;" (1 John v. 1.) which regeneration is as it were a second creation: “for we are God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works.”. (Ephes. ii. 10.) And he alone who did create us out of nothing, can beget us again, and
• So Eustathius observes out of an inge + • Totum hominum genus quodamnious etymologist : Πατήρ Θεός μεν, ώς το modo sunt homines duo, primus et seπάν τηρών άνθρωπος δε, ως τους παίδας τη cundus.' Prosp. lib. Sententiar.er August. pār. Il. o.