Imágenes de páginas


The five books of The first and second

of Chronicles, Joshua,

Ezra, Judges,

Nehemiah, Ruth,

Esther, The first and second Job, of Samuel,

Psalıns, The first and second Proverbs, of Kings,


The Song of Solomon,
Jeremiah,his prophecy

and lamentation,
'The twelve less



The gospels according Galatians,

to Matthew,


The epistle of St. James,

The two epistles of St. John,

The first and second Peter, The Acts of the Apostles. epistle to the Thes- The three epistles of St. The epistle of St. Paul salonians,

Jolin, to the Romans, The first and second St. Jude, The first and second epistle to Timothy, The Revelation of St, epistle to the Corin- Titus,

John, thians.

All which we acknowledge to be given by the inspiration of God, and in that regard to be of most certain credit and highest authority.

3. The other books, commonly called Apocryphal, did not proceed from such inspiration, and therefore are not of sufficient authority to establish any point of doctrine; but the church doth read them as books containing many worthy things for example of life and instruction of manners,


The third book of Es. The book of Wisdom, Susanna, dras,

The book of Jesus the Bell and the Dragon, The fourth book of Es son of Sirach, called The prayer of Manasses drus,

Ecclesiasticus, The first book of Mace The book of Tobias, Baruch,with the epis cabees, The book of Judith, tle of Jeremiah, The second book of MacAdditions to the book The song of the three cabees. of Esther,


4. The scriptures ought to be translated out of the original tongues into all languages, for the common use of all men. Neither is any

person to be discouraged from reading the bible in such a language as he doth understant, but seriously exhorted to read the same with great humility and reverence, as a special means to bring him to the true knowledge of God, and of his own duty.

5. Although there be some hard things in the scripture (especially such as have proper relation to the times in which they were first ui. tered, and prophecies of things which were afterwards to be fulfilled) yet all things necessary to be known unto everlasting salvation are clearly delivered therein; and nothing of that kind is spoken under dark mysteries in one place, which is not in other places spoken'more familiarly and plainly to the capacity both of learned and unlearned.

8. The holy scriptores contain all things necessary to salvation, and are able to instruct sufficiently in all points of faith that we are bound to believe, and all good duties that we are bound to practise.

7. All and every the articles contained in the Nicene Creed, the Creed of Athanasias, and that which is commonly called the Apostles' Creed, ought firmly to be received and believed, for they may be prof. ed by most certain warrant of holy scripture.

Of faith in the Holy Trinity. 8. THERE is but one living and true God, everlasting, without body, parts, or passions, of infinite power, wisdom and goodness; the maker and preserver of all things, both visible and invisible. And in upity of this Godhead there be three persens of one and the same substance, power, and eternity, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost.

8. The essence of the Father doth not, beget the essence of the Son; but the person of the Father begetteth the person of the Son, by communicating his whole essence to the person begotten from elerpity.

10. The Holy Ghost, proceeding from the Father and the Son, is of one substance, majesty, and glory,

with the Father and the Son, very and eterpal God.

Of God's eternal Decree and Predestination. 11. GOD from all eternity did, by his unchangeable counsel, ordain whatsoever in time should come to pass'; yet so, as thereby no vio. Jence is offered to the wills of the reasonable creatures, and neither the liberty nor the contingency of the second causes is taken away, but established rather. CP12, “By the same eternal counsel God hath predestinated

some unto life, and reprobated some unto death; of both which there is a certain number, known only to God, which can neither be increased mor diminished."

13. Predestination to life is the everlasting purpose of God, whereby, before the foundations of the world were laid, he hath constantly decreed ip his secret counsel, to deliver from curse and damnation those whom he hath chosen in Christ out of mankind, and to bring them by Christ unto everlasting salvation, as vessels made to honor.

II. 14. “ The cause moving God to predestinate unto life, is

not the foreseeing of faith, or of perseverance, or of good works, or of any thing which is in the person predestinated, but only the good pleasure of God

himself.” For all things being ordained for the manifestation of his glory, and his glory being to appear, both in the works of his mercy and of his justice, it seemed good to his heavenly wisdom to choose out a certain number, towards whom he would extend his undeserved mercy, leaving the rest to be spectacles of his justice.

15. Such as are predestinated unto life be called according unto God's purpose, (his spirit working in due season) and through grace they 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 jo good works, and at length by God's merey they attain to everlasting felicity. D'IV.“ But such as are not predestinated to salvation shall

finally be condemned for their sing.” 16. The godly consideration of predestination, and our election in Christ, is full of sweet, pleasant, and unspeakable comfort to godly persons, and such as feel in themselves the working of the spirit of Christ, mortifying the works of the flesh, and their earthly members, and drawing up their minds to high and heavenly things, as well be cause it doth greatly confirm and establish their faith of eternal salvation to be enjoyed through Christ, as because it doth fervently kindle their love towards God; and on the contrary side, for curious and carnal persons, lacking the spirit of Christ, to have continually before their eyes the sentence of God's predestination is very dangerous.

17. We must receive God's promises in such wise as they be generally set forth unto 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.

of the Creation and Government of all Things. 18. IN the beginning of time, when no creature had any being, God by bis word alone, in the space of six days, created all things ; and afterwards by bis providence doth continue, propagate, and order tbem according to his own will.

19. The principal creatures are angels and men.

20. Of angels, some continued in that holy state wherein they were created, and are by God's grace for ever established therein; others fell from the same, and are reserved in chains of darkness unto the judgment of the great day.

21. Man being at the beginning created according to the image of God (which consisted especially in the wisdom of his mind, and the true holiness of his free-will) had the covenant of the law ingrafted in his beart, whereby God did promise unto him everlasting life, upon condition that he performed entire and perfect obedience unto his conmandments, according to that measure of strength wherewith he was endued in his creation, and threatened death unto him if he did not perform the same. of the Fall of Man, original Sin, and the State of Man before

Justification. 22. BY one man sip entered into the world, and death by sin, and so death went over all men, for as much as all have sinned.

23. Original sin standeth not in the imitation of Adam, (as the Pel. agians dream) but is the fault and corruption of the nature of every person that naturally is ingendered and propagated from Adam, whereby it cometh to pass, that man is deprived of original righteousness, and by nature is bent unto sin; and therefore in every person born into the world it deserveth God's wrath and damnation.

24. This corruption of nature doth remain even in those that are re-
generated, whereby the flesh always lysteth against the spirit, and can-
not be made subject to the law of God. And howsoever, for Christ's
sake, there be no condemnation to such as are regenerate and do
believe; yet doth the apostle acknowledge, that in itself this concu.
piscence hath the nature of sin.
IX. 25. “ 'The condition of man, after the fall of Adam, is

such, that he cannot turn and prepare himself, by
his own natural strength and good works, to faith,

and calling upon God.”
Wherefore we have no power to do good works, pleasing and accept-
able unto God, without the grace of God preventing as, that we may
have a good will, and working with us, when we have that good wilj.

26. Works done before the grace of Christ, and the inspiration of his spirit, are not pleasing unto God, forasmuch as they spring not of faith in Jesus Christ, neither do they make men meet to receive grace, or (as the school authors say, deserve grace of congruity ;) yea rather for that they are not done in such sort that God hath willed and commanded them to be done, we doubt not but they are sinful.

27. All sins are not equal, but some far more heinous than others; yet the very least is of its own nature mortal, and without God's mercy maketh the offender liable unto everlasting damnation.

[ocr errors][ocr errors]

28. God is not the author of sin : howbeit he doth not only permit, but also by his providence govern and order the same, guiding it in such sort by his infinite wisdom, as it turneth to the manifestation of his own glory, and to the good of his elect.

of Christ, the Mediator of the second Covenant.

29. THE Son, which is the Word of the Father, begotten from the everlasting of the Father, the true and eternal God, of one substance with the Father, took man's nature in the womb of the blessed virgin, of her substance; so that two whole and perfect natures, that is to say, the godhead and manhood, were inseperably joined in one person, making one Christ, very God and very man.

30. Christ, in the truth of our nature, was made like unto us in all things, sin only excepted, from which he was clearly void, both in his life and in his nature. He came as a lamb without spot to take away the sins of the world, by the sacrifice of himself once made, and sin (as St. John saith) was not in him. He fulfilled the law for us perfectly; for our sakes he endured most grievous torments immediately in his soul, and most painful sufferings in his body. He was crucified, and died to reconcile his Father unto us; and to be a sacrifice not only for original guilt, but also for all our actual transgressions. He was buried and descended into hell, and the third day rose from the dead, and took again his body, with flesh, bones, and all things appertaining to the perfection of man's nature, wherewith be ascended into heaven, and there sitteth at the right hand of his Father, until he return to judge all men at the last day.

of the communicating of the Grace of Christ. 31. THEY are to be condemned that presume to say, that every man shall be saved by the law or sect which he professeth, so that he be diligent to frame his life according to that law, and the light of nature; for holy scripture doth set out unto us only the name of Jesus Christ whereby men must be saved. 32. ( VIII. “None can come unto Christ unless it be given

unto him, and unless he draw him. And all men

are not so drawn by the Father, that they may p VII. come unto the Son; neither is there such a suffi

cient measure of grace vouchsafed unto every man, whereby he is enabled to come unto ever

lasting life.” 33. All God's eleet are in their time inseperably united unto Christ, by the effectual and vital influence of the Holy Ghost, derived from him, as from the head, unto every true member of his mystical body. And being thus made one with Christ, they are truly regenerated, and made partakers of him and all his benefits.

« AnteriorContinuar »