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endeavour to subdue them early, that I may be fitter to teach. others to do it?
Do I ever take any proper occasion, in my discourse, to make some essay towards the conversion or edification of souls, as preparatories for my future ministry?
II. Questions in the Doctrines of Divinity, proper to be proposed to Students, in their Examination, in Order to preach.
WHAT arguments have you to prove the existence of God? and the creation of the world by him?
How are his various perfections to be demonstrated, viz. his eternity, his unity, his immutability, his power, wisdom, goodness, truth, &c. ?
How is the light of nature proved insufficient to give solid hope to sinful creatures, and the light of grace or divine revelation necessary?
How are the scriptures evidenced to be the word of God, both the Old Testament and the New?
How can you prove the faithful conveyance of them to our
Was man at first created righteous and holy, and what are the proofs of it?
What was the covenant of works, under which man was created at first?
How is the fall of Adam, the first man, proved to reach his posterity? Or what are the evidences of original sin imputed, and original sin inberent?
What is the covenant of grace? or what way of salvation has God appointed for fallen man?
Who, or what is Jesus Christ our Saviour?
How doth it appear that Christ is both God and man; or that he is true man in ineffable union with the true and eternal God?
What are the transactions assigned to God the Father in the covenant of grace?
What is the doctrine of predestination, or of election of persons to salvation? And how may it be proved?
How do you prove the Messiah is come; and that Jesus Christ is the true Messiah?
What are the characters and offices assigned to Christ, in this covenant of grace; or what are the ways, whereby he saves sinners ?
In what sense are Adam and Christ the general heads of death and life?
What it the covenant of redemption made with Christ, before the foundation of the world?
Who, or what is the Spirit of God?
How may his Diety be proved?
What offices are assigned to the Holy Spirit in this covenant of grace?
What are the several dispensations of the covenant of grace, viz. to Adam, Noah, Abraham, Moses ?
What were the chief emblems or seals under these several dispensations?
What were the chief designs of the Mosaical covenant, or God's dispensation towards the Jews?
What is prefigured by several of the chief types, viz. the high-priest, the tabernacle, the sacrifices, the washings, the incense, the promised land, &c.
How is the divine commission of Moses to be proved?
Was the Mosaical covenant a covenant of works, or a covemant of grace? Or was it neither ? or was it both?
What was the design of so many prophets coming after Moses, since they instituted no new religion?
What is the true account or description of the gospel, as revealed by Christ? or what is the christian dispensation?
How is the divine commission of our Lord Jesus Christ proved? what are the internal and external evidences of christianity?
What are the several states through which Christ passed in the execution of his various offices?
Of what uses are the incarnation, life and death, the resurrection and glorification of Christ, in our religion?
What are the chief differences between the covenant of works, and the covenant of grace?
What are the chief differences between the Jewish dispensation, and the christian dispensation?
What are the blessings promised in the covenant of grace! viz. regeneration, vocation, justification, adoption, sanctification, perseverance and glorification: And how are they described?
What are sinners to do in order to partake of the blessings of the gospel?
How would you describe faith in Christ, repentance towards God, and sincere obedience, or universal holiness in the plainest manner?
What are our chief duties to God, to our neighbour, and ourselves? Here will come in all the single or personal virtues of temperance, patience, &c. the social virtues of love, justice, truth, faithfulness, &c. as well as the divine virtues of godliness, &c.
What are our duties to superiors, to inferiors and to equals?
Here will come in the duties of a magistrate, a father, as master, &c. a subject, child, a servant, &c. a neighbour, a friend, a brother, &c.
What are the chief motives to engage us to practise these duties, drawn from reason and from scripture.
What are the chief parts of divine worship?
What is prayer? and in whose name, and by whose aid must it be performed?
When may forms of prayer be lawful, and when hurtful? Is there any sabbath, or a day of rest and worship continued under the gospel? and how is it proved?
What are the christian sacraments? Are they signs, or seals, or both?
What is the nature and design of christian baptism?
Is immersion of the whole body necessary?
Is the Lord's-supper an expiatory sacrifice; or is it merely a memorial of Christ's death? or is it rather a sign and seal of the covenant of grace?
Is it to be administered to persons who make a mere verbal profession of Christ, without some evidences of conversion and repentance?
What is the church of Christ both invisible and visible? Universal and particular?
In what manner is a visible church to be formed and governed in general? And what are the chief officers in it?
How are the members of the church to be punished, if they are refractory against the community, or against the laws of Christ?
What will be the conclusion of all these dispensations of God towards men?
How may the last judgment-day be proved as a thing certain ?
How is the resurrection of the body to be evidenced?
Does the soul sleep at death till the resurrection? or does it immediately enter into a state of happiness or misery?
What are the chief glories of heaven? or what is the final happiness of the saints?
What are the chief parts of the misery of the wicked, in the world to come?
What are chief proofs of the eternity of future rewards and punishments?
And, indeed, under every one of these heads, it is proper to enquire, what are the chief scriptures that are used to prove these doctrines.
III. Practical and casuistical Questions for Candidates of the Ministry, and young Preachers.
IN what manner, would you address stupid sinners, in order to awaken them to a sense of their sin and danger, by reason and by scripture?
How would you convince a sober man that he has no sufficient righteousness of his own to justify him before God, by reason and by scripture ?
What directions would you give one that is awakened to a sense of sin, and begins to enquire the way of salvation?
By what motives would you excite and hasten delaying sinners to secure their eternal state?
What encouragements would you give to one who is overwhelmed with a sense of the greatness, the multitude and aggravation of his sins in order to keep him from despair?
How would you represent Christ as answering all the wants of perishing sinners?
What would you say to a person, who neglects religion from a pretence that it is in vain to seek after happiness, if he is not elected?
How would you treat young persons to draw them to religion, by considering their pious education, and their early baptism? How would you guard young creatures, against the danger of evil company
In what manner would you direct persons, who complain of the power and prevalence of special sins or temptations?
By what methods would you fortify youth against shame and scoffing, when they resolve upon religion in good earnest?
What sort of persuasions would you use to lead a person to public worship, who complains he finds no benefit by it?
How would you excite negligent persons, who are in years, to take care of their souls and their eternal interest?
What would you say, to encourage those, who are diligent in the practice of religion, but complain they feel no pleasure in it? How would you comfort serious christians under darkness, who fear God is departed from them?
How may persons be recovered, who have backslidden from the practices of piety, and are grown careless?
How would you support those, who are under long outward trials, and encourage them to persevere in patience?
What would you say to relieve the sorrows of those who are mourning under some present huge affliction?
How would you persuade those who quarrel, to be reconciled? and particularly, such as differ about principles and opinious in religion ?
How may warm passionate persons be directed to subdue their passions?
What encouragement would you give to timorous christians against the fears of dying?
How would you prepare doubting christians for approaching death?
Perhaps, it might not be an improper exercise for students, in the last part of their academical studies, to write letters of christian advice to persons under all these circumstances, or at least to write down answers to all these enquiries, to be perused and corrected by their tutors.
IV. Questions proper for Young Ministers frequently to put to themselves, chiefly borrowed from the Epistles to Timothy and Titus.
SECTION I-Of faithfulness in the Ministry.
DO I sincerely give myself" to the ministry of the word;" Acts vi. 4. and do I design to make it the chief business of my life to serve Christ in his gospel, in order to the salvation of men?
Do I resolve, through the aids of divine grace, to be "faithful to him who hath put me into the ministry, and to take heed to the ministry which I have received in the Lord that I may fulfil it?" 1 Tim. i. 12. Col. iv. 17.
Do I honestly and faithfully endeavour by study and prayer to know" the truth as it is in Jesus?" Eph. iv. 21. and do I seek my instruction chiefly from the "holy scriptures, which are able to make me wise unto salvation, through the faith that is in Christ, that I may be thoroughly furnished unto every good werd and work?" 2 Tim. iii. 14, 17.
Do I hold fast the form of sound words," as far as I have learned them of Christ and his apostles? 2 Tim. i. 13. That I may by sound doctrine exhort and convince gainsayers;" Tit. i. 9. And do I determine to "continue in the things which I have learned, knowing from whom I have learned them?" 2 Tim. iii. 14.
Do I resolve to give the people the true meaning of Christ in his word, so far as I can understand it, and "not to handle the word of God deceitfully, but by manifestation of the truth commend myself to every man's conscience in the sight of God?" 2 Cor. iv. 2.
Am I watchful to "avoid profane and vain babblings?" 1 Tim. vi. 20. and do I take care to "shun foolish questions which do gender strife, and disputing about words, which are to no profit, but the subversion of the bearers?" 2 Tim. ii. 14, 23.
Do I study to shew myself approved unto God, rightly dividing the word of truth; 2 Tim. ii. 15. giving to every one, viz. to saints and sinners, their proper portion?
Do I make it my business, to "testify to all men, whether