صور الصفحة
النشر الإلكتروني





III. "The Cal- III. "The


eth in us; to the
which the punish-vinists say, that al- cians called it (free
though man has lost will) Anterousian
his power to obey, a self-moving,orself.
yet God has not lost determiningpower.)
his right to com- How few are there,
mand. What, then, who, when they
shall we call those hear free-will attri
persons, who tell buted to man, do
us, that sinners have not, by and by, con-
a natural ability for ceive that he is
moral action." pp. Lord both of his
45, 54.
own mind and will,
ard that he is able
of himself to turn
himself, &c." B. II.
Ch. 2. sec. 7, 8.

ment is justly due.
The apostle himself
expressly witness-
eth, that death came
upon all men, be-
cause all men have
sinned. And, there-
fore, the very in-
farts themselves are
bound, not by ano-
ther's, but by their
own fault.-There
could be no guilti.
ness without sin."
Book II, Ch. 1. sec.


II. "God loved

as his crea

his Son, to obey
and suffer, as a sub-

II. "The Calvinistick doctrine of men election includes tures, while he hatthe idea of a par. ed them as sinners, ticular atonement.- and therefore sent The atonement was a satisfaction made for the sins of the stitute.- Now it is elect.-To all the plain, what that elect, and to no oth- saying of the proer persons, did God originally design to extend the atonement." pp. 26, 266, 105.

On page 116 is "a Critique," designed to prove a limited atonement.

phet (Isa. liii. 6)
meaneth, that the
iniquities of us all
were laid upon him,
&c." B. II. Ch. 16,
sec. 4, 6.

It would seem,
from these and sim-
ilar expressions, that
Calvin viewed the
atonement as made
for men, as such,
and, therefore, suf-
ficient for all. He
no where clearly
expresses his idea
of the extent of the
atonement. That he
held to a limited
atonement, is only
an inference from
his notion of im-
putation. But, if it
may be inferred
from Calvin's idea
of imputation, that
he held to a limited
atonement; it may
as justly be inferred
from his view of the
general offers of the
Gospel, and the cri-
minality of unbelief,

that he held to an
unlimited atone-

Such is the freedom of will, which Calvin rejects; consistently with which he might hold, and, for aught appears, did hold, that men have natural power to do their duty; while, in an unrenewed state, they have no moral power, i. e. no inclination to any thing holy.

IV. "Faith is the IV. "The beginfirst exercise of the ning of believing regenerate soul.- doth already conThe believing pen- tain in it the reconitent loves God.— ciliation, whereby How can a man re- man approacheth to pent, or perform God; as Paul saith, any good works, With the heart man before he firmly be believeth unto right31 B. II. lieves?" pp. 182, eousness.' Ch. 17, sec. 8. 218, 220. V. "God has not V. John plainsuspended man's ly testifieth, that salvation upon any they, who believe in condition, which he his name (the name or ever will of Christ) are made a the children of God. perform. The tonement is the only Christ sendeth the condition, on which is suspended the sinner's salvation." p. 47.


[ocr errors]

apostles to publish the gospel to all the nations of the world, subjoining, that they who believe, and are baptized, shall be saved." B. II. Ch. 1, sec. 1, and B. IV. Ch, 16, s. 28.

VI. "Calvinists VI. When it is maintain, that God said, in the Psalms, can govern his crea- that God doeth all tures, without doing things that he will, all their deeds him- this has respect to

ELY. CALVIN. self.-Angels made all the doings of men. themselves Devils. If God appoints war The Calvinists be- and peace, who will lieve that God ef- say, that men act, fectually calls the without being causelect, without cre- ed, and that the aating holy volitions gency of God is not in them immediate- concerned in their ly. God so gov. actions?--They trierns moral agents, fle, who thrust as to do his pleas- in a bare. permisure, without creat- sion, in place of the ing their actions." Providence of God. pp. 56, 57, 136, 262. --The words of Sol

omon, The king's heart is in the hand of the Lord; he turneth it, as the rivers of water, whithersoever he will, are applicable to all mankind.--I grant, that God often times works in the Reprobate by Satan's service as a mean; but yet so that Satan doth his office by God's moving.God worketh in the hearts of evil men, whatsoever he will; and yet rendereth to them according to their deservings." B. I. Ch. 18. VII. "The Con- VII. But, altho' fessions say nothing the whole prayer, of disinterested love (the Lord's prayer) in the Godhead.- is such, that, in ev. In every moral ac- ery part of it, retion,the agent must gard is especially be either interested to be had to the or uninterested.-- glory of God; yet Did we know noth- the three first petiing of God but his tions are peculiarly justice, we might appointed to God's submit; but it would glory, which alone be from fear.-It is we ought to look idle, therefore, to to, in them, without pretend, as many any respect to our do, that the sinner own profit.-When must first love God, we pray, that the before he can have name of God may any warrant to be- be hallowed, believe in the Sav- cause God will iour. Calvinists gen- prove, whether we erally believe, that love and honour the expression, for him freely, or for I did (could) wish hope of reward; we that myself were ac- must think nothing cursed from Christ, of our own interest, (Rom. ix. 3) was but his glory must

[blocks in formation]

introduced by Paul, be set before us, in a parenthesis, to which alone we must explain the reason behold with fixed of his great sorrow eyes-so that if all for his countrymen. hope of our private Some of them, how. benefit were cut off, ever, differ in con- yet we would not struction; and sup- cease to wish and pose that Paul, in pray for the sanctiexpressing his ar- fication of God's dent attachment to name and for other the Jews, said, "I things that pertain did wish myself to to his glory: as we be set apart," or see in the examdevoted, as anathema ple of Moses and sometimes signifies, Paul, To WHOM IT hupo "by Christ," WAS NOT GRIEVOUS to the apostleship, To TURN AWAY "for my brethren." THEIR MINDS AND Dr. LEE supposes EYES FROM THEMPaul to say, "I my- SELVES, AND WITH self did boast, that VEHEMENT AND INI was separated from FLAMED ZEAL, to Christ, more than wish THEIR my brethren."-It DESTRUCTION; THAT is said by some, THOUGH IT WERK that the prayer of WITH THEIR OWN Moses, Blot me. I LOSS, THEY MIGHT pray thee, out of thy ADVANCE THE GLObook, Deut. xxxii. BY AND KINGDOM 32, proves that he or GOD." B. III, was willing to be ac. Ch.20, sec. 35. cursed for his brethren.-The truth is, that the scriptures speak of pardon under the similitude of blotting out a debt. Moses entreated that his personal transgressions might be remitted;

[blocks in formation]


From the above Contrast, it is thought, that three Inferences may fairly be drawn, with which I shaft close the present essay:

1. Modern Calvinism is widely | ciples and their consequences.different from Ancient Calvinism. The broad foundation, which sup2. Hopkinsianism and Ancient ports our ample superstructure, Calvinism are so nearly alike, that was long since deeply and most the late excellent Dr. SAMUEL firmly laid in the first principles SPRING had sufficient reason for of Calvinism." saying, "It is evident, that Hopkinsian sentiments are only the genuine flourishing and fruitful branches of the Calvinistick tree. -There is no more difference between Calvinists and Hopkinsians, than there is between a tree and its branches, or between first prin

3. Compared with Modern Calvinism, Hopkinsianism is very moderate Calvinism: for it plainly | appears, that Modern Calvinism is nothing more nor less, than a gross system of Antinomian Selfishness.



HABAKKUK ii. 2. And the Lord answered me, and said, Write the vision, and make it plain upon ta- | bles, that he may run that readeth it.

The book of Habakkuk contains a prediction of the destruction of the Jews, by the Chaldeans; also of the destruction of the Chaldeans by some other power, which God would raise up to punish them for their impiety, idolatry and oppression.

eth," they say, "That he who runs, may read." It is thus quoted by Dr. Young, in his Night Thoughts, "who runs may read." The idea conveyed by this expression, is, that the writing must be very legible; that it must be in capitals, or large letters, fairly and distinctly written. This is one sense, which may be, and is put upon the passage. And if this be the real meaning of the passage, the transposition of the words, mentioned, will be of no consequence: for the single idea conveyed, is, that the writing must be so plain and legible, that one can read it, when he is running.

The prophet was ordered to write this prophecy, as well as to deliver it verbally, that, at the time of its accomplishment, people, by comparing the event and But, as the words stand in the prophecy together, might have Bible, they may be understood in evidence of a superintending pro- a different sense. It may be, that vidence of God. the commandment given to HabThe passage under considera-akkuk, to write the vision and tion, has been understood differ- make it plain upon tables, meant, ently by different persons; and the not merely that his hand-writing sense in which it has been under- should be legible; but that the stood by some, has been the occa- matter of his vision should be made sion of their transposing some of intelligible. If making the vision the words in such a manner, as plain referred to the hand-writing, necessarily to fix their sense upon would not the similitude be very the passage. Often, in quoting or singular and unnatural, such as is referring to this passage of Scrip- not usually found in the Bible? ture, in sermons or other dis- For who ever reads, when runcourses, the words, run and read, ning? Further, of what great imare transposed. Instead of say-portance would such a command ing "That he may run that read- be? But if, by making the vision

plain upon tables, we understand, that the prophet was ordered to write in an intelligible manner, the matter of his vision, or prophecy, so that those, who would read it, might understand it, take warning, and run from impending danger; the command appears to have been very necessary and important.

This exposition of the text, appears to be natural, easy and correct, when we read it just as it is in the Bible. The Lord was not pointing out the degree of plainness, which the prophet must use in writing his vision; but the end for which it must be made plain. He did not say, that it must be written so plain, that one can read it when running; but it must be plain, thut one who reads it may be excited to run.

Evils, great evils, were impending God's ancient people; and God was graciously pleased to give them warning, that those of them, who were believing and obedient, might flee to a place of safety. God said to this prophet, "I raise up the Chaldeans, that bitter and hasty nation, who shall march through the breadth of the land, to possess the dwelling-places that are not theirs. They are terrible and dreadful; their judgment and their dignity shall proceed of themselves. Their horses also are swifter than the leopards, and more fierce than the evening wolves: and their horsemen shall spread themselves, and their horsemen shall come from far, they shall fly as the eagle that hasteth to eat. They shall come all for violence: their faces shall sup up the east wind, and they shall gather the captivity as the sand."


Disinterested benevolence we believe to be simply this, such a


God told Habakkuk to make this matter plain and intelligible, that those, who would read his prophecy, might know what evil was coming, and make haste to secure themselves.



It was, also, revealed to this prophet, that the Chaldeans, by reason of their success and conquests, would become haughty, cruel and impious; and that God would inflict punishment on them; that their country would in its turn, be conquered and made desolate; and that this matter must be made plain, that God's obedient people, who might be amongst them, might escape the danger. The Chaldeans were to gather the captivity as the sand." innumerable multitude of the Jews were to be carried captives into the land of the Chaldeans; and when the destruction of Babylon, the city of the Chaldeans, should come, God's people there would again be in imminent danger; and therefore they must be warned to run from the impending evils; and for this end, Habakkuk must make his vision plain. Thus Jeremiah did, who prophesied of the same thing, and probably about the same time: Chap. li. 6, "Flee out of the midst of Babylon, and deliver every man his soul: be not cut off in her iniquity; for this is the time of the Lord's vengeance; he will render unto her a recompense." Jeremiah made his vision plain, and warned God's people to escape from the impending calamities. And so was Habakkuk ordered to do, that those, who would read, might run, and not be cut off with the wicked, when God should take vengeance on them.

Rev. J. Barker's Serm.

love for the general good as approves of the divine conduct in sacrificing every other considera

tion to advance this object. That person, therefore, who, from a clear and distinct view of this truth, that the ultimate end of all the dispensations of Providence is the general good, that the happiness of some individuals is sought in subordination to this object, and that the happiness of others is sacrificed to promote it, rejoices in the divine government, possesses the true spirit of disinterested be


It is a question of no minor importance, how an individual possessing such a spirit, will feel conoerning his own interest, when he contemplates the doctrine of divine sovereignty.

gard to our salvation? In the first place:

We have every reason to believe that he is not indifferent to our interest. All the dispensations of his providence, as well as the positive declarations of his holy word, evince the most tender regard for even the lowest of his creatures. He is long suffering to us ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance. How shall I give thee up, Ephraim? How shall I deliver thee, Israel? How shall I make thee as Admah? How shall I set thee as Zeboim? My heart is turned within me, my repentings are kindled together. Such is the lanThere is no difficulty in deter-guage of his Providence, such are mining the feelings of one who has a perfect assurance of his own good estate. He knows the will of God respecting himself, that he is a subject of the divine favour. Of course, he will desire that his own good may be promoted in subordination to the general good. In this he exercises the true spirit of disinterested benevolence.

the feelings of his heart, even towards his incorrigible enemies.Disinterested benevolence, therefore, does not require us to be indifferent to our own salvation. On the contrary it demands the greatest anxiety and the most vigorous exertions on our part, to secure an object which infinite goodness regards with such deep solicitude. But secondly:

Although the Almighty is not indifferent to our salvation, yet, we must conclude that he regards the general good as an object of greater importance than our individual good. If he did not, he would cease to be all-wise, and would no longer be worthy of the supreme regard of his creatures.

But how few, among the great mass of the nominal disciples of our Lord, can say, that they have a perfect assurance of their own good estate. So far as our knowledge is concerned, the salvation of our souls is yet uncertain. It remains among the secret purposes of him, who disposes of all his works according to his sovereign pleasure. How important then, is the enquiry, What ought to be the feelings of persons situated as we are, respecting their own interest? In answering this enquiry, we shall assume that our feelings ought to coincide with the feelings of God, as far as they can be ascertained. Since the Almighty considers If they do not, how can we be the general good to be an object happy in his presence? How can of greater importance than our we walk with God unless our feel- personal good, we must conclude ings agree with his? What then that he regards with deeper solicare the feelings of God with re-itude, the happiness of his whole

Disinterested benevolence requires that our feelings should coincide with the feelings of God.— We therefore should consider our own salvation an object of less importance than the happiness of his ́ whole kingdom. And thirdly,

« السابقةمتابعة »