The Chief Points of Religion - by Dr. Theodore BezaCalvinistic Articles on the Christian Faith
Today, many Christians are turning back to the puritans to, “walk in the old paths,” of God’s word, and to continue to proclaim old truth that glorifies Jesus Christ. There is no new theology. In our electronic age, more and more people are looking to add electronic books (ePubs, mobi and PDF formats) to their library – books from the Reformers and Puritans – in order to become a “digital puritan” themselves. Take a moment to visit Puritan Publications (click the banner below) to find the biggest selection of rare puritan works updated in modern English in both print form and in multiple electronic forms. There are new books published every month. All proceeds go to support A Puritan’s Mind.
[The place and testimonies of the Scriptures, which are alleged in this Treatise, and marked by numbers, it seemed good to place apart at the end of every Chapter, partly that being separate they might be better weighed and understood: and partly because they could not for the multitude thereof be contained in the margin of the book. And here we have compassed every number within these two lines ( ) to the intent they might the more easily be found out.]
The question of Gods eternal Predestination is not curious, or unprofitable, but of great importance, and very necessary in the Church of God.
The First Chapter:
AUGUSTINE in his book of the profit of Perseverance (De Bono Perseverantiæ, chapter 14) saith, that they which were against him as adversaries in this question, did allege that this doctrine of Predestination did hinder the preaching of God’s word, and caused that it could not profit. As if (saith he) this doctrine had hindered the Apostle Paul to do his duty: who so oftentimes doth commend unto us, and teach Predestination, and yet never ceaseth to preach the word of God. Also saith moreover: As he that hath received the gift, can better exhort and preach: so he that hath received this gift, doth hear the Preacher more obediently, and with greater reverence, etc. We do therefore exhort and preach, but they only which have ears to hear do hear us quietly, and to their comfort: and in those that have them not, this sentence is fulfilled, that hearing with their ears they do not hear, for they hear with the outward sense, but not with the inward consent. Now why some men have these ears, and others not, it is, because it is given to some to come, and to others not. Who knew God’s counsel? must that be denied which is plain and evident, because that cannot be known which is hid and secret? Again in the 15th chapter, I pray you (saith he) if some under the shadow of predestination give themselves to slothful negligence, and as they are bent to flatter their flesh, so follow their own lusts, must we therefore judge, that this which is written of the foreknowledge of God is false? Now surely this is very handsome, and to the purpose, that we shall not speak that which by the Scripture is lawful to speak. Oh we fear (say you) lest he should be offended, which is not able to understand, and take it. And shall we not fear (say I) lest whiles we hold our tongue, he that is able to take the truth, be taken and snared with falsehood and error? Also in the 20th chapter of the same book he writeth in this sort, If the Apostles, and Doctors of the church which came after them, did the one and the other, both teaching the eternal Election of God purely and truly, and also retaining the faithful in godly life and manners: What moveth these our adversaries (Seeing they are overcome with the manifest and invincible truth) to think they speak well, saying, although this doctrine of predestination be true, yet it ought not to be preached to the people? Nay, so much the rather it is good to be throughly preached, that he that hath ears to hear, may hear. And who hath them, but he that hath received them of God, who promiseth to give them? And as for him that doth receive it, let him refuse it if he will: so that he that doth receive it, may take it, drink it, be sufficed, and have life. For as we must preach the fear of God to the end that God may be truly served: so must we preach Predestination that he which hath ears to hear may hear, and rejoice in God, not in himself, for the grace of God towards him.
This is the mind of that excellent Doctor as touching this point, which notwithstanding bindeth us to two conditions: the one is, that we speak no farther herein than God’s word doth limit us: the other, that we set forth the same thing which the Scripture teacheth, accordingly, and to edification. Wherefore we will briefly speak of both these parts: first of the doctrine itself, and next of the use and applying of the same.
The Second Chapter:
Of the eternal counsel of God hid in himself, the which afterwards is known by the effects thereof.
GOD, whose judgments no man can comprehend, whose ways can not be found out, and whose will (1) ought to stop all men’s mouths (2), according to the determinate and unchangeable purpose of his will, by the virtue whereof all things are made (3), yea even those things which are evil and execrable (not in that they be wrought by his Divine counsel, but forasmuch as they proceed of the prince of the air, and that spirit which worketh in the children (4) of disobedience) hath determined (5) from before all beginning with himself, to create all things in their time, for his glory, and (6) namely men: whom he hath made after two sorts, clean contrary one to the other. Whereof he maketh the one sort (which it pleased him to choose by his secret will and purpose) partakers of his glory through his mercy (7), and these we call according to the word of God, the vessels of honor, the elect, the children of promise, and predestinate to salvation (8): and the others, whom likewise it pleased him to ordain to damnation (that he might shew forth his wrath and power, to be glorified also in them) we do call the vessels of dishonor and wrath, the Reprobate and cast off from all good works (9).
This Election or Predestination to everlasting life, being considered in the will of God (that is to say) this selfsame determination, or purpose to Elect, is the first fountain and chief original of the salvation of God’s children: neither is it thereon grounded, as some say, because God did foresee their faith, or good works: but only of his own good will (10,) from whence afterwards the Election, the faith, and the good works spring forth. Therefore, when the scripture will confirm the children of God in full and perfect hope, it doth not stay in alleging the testimonies of the second causes, that is to say, in the fruits of faith, nor in the second causes themselves, as faith, and calling by the Gospel, neither yet sometimes in Christ himself, in whom notwithstanding we are, as in our head Elected and adopted, but ascendeth higher, even unto that eternal purpose which God hath determined only in himself (11.)
Likewise, when mention is made of the damnation of the Reprobate, although the whole fault thereof be in themselves (12): yet notwithstanding, sometimes when need requireth, the Scripture to make more manifest by this comparison the great power of God’s patience, and the riches of his glory towards the vessels of mercy (13), leadeth us unto this high secret, which by order is the first cause of their damnation, of the which secret, no other cause is known to men, but only his just will, which we must with all reverence obey, as coming from him, who is only just, and can not by any means, nor of any man, in any sort be comprehended (14). For we must put difference betwixt the purpose or ordinance of reprobation, and reprobation itself. Because God would that the secret of this his purpose should be kept close from us: and again we have the causes or Reprobation, and damnation, which dependeth thereof, expressed in God’s word, that is to say, corruption, lack of faith, and iniquity, which as they be necessary, so are they also voluntary in the vessels made to dishonour (15): like as on the other part when we describe orderly the causes of the salvation of the elect, we put difference betwixt the purpose of electing, which God hath determined in himself, and the election which is appointed in Christ in such sort, that this his purpose or ordinance, doth not only go before election in the degree of causes, but also before all other things that follow the same. (16.)
Notes of the second chapter:
(1) Rom. 11.33. (2) Job 9.10-12; Rom 9.20. (3) Eph. 1.9,11; Gen. 27.20; Exod. 21.13; John 22.13; Prov. 16.33; 20.24; 21.1; Isa. 14.27; 46.4,10; Jer. 10.23; Dan. 4.32; Matt. 10.29; Gal. 1.4. (4) Eph. 2.2. (5) Gen. 45.8; 50.19,20; Exod. 4.21; 7.3; and 9.12; and 10.1,20,27; and 11.10; 14.4,8,17; Deut. 2.30; Josh. 11.19,20; 1 Sam. 2.25; 2 Sam. 12.11; 16.11; and 24.1; 1 Kings 12.15; 22.22,23; 2 Kings 18.25; 2 Chron. 10.15; 11.4; 22.7; 25.20; Neh. 9.36,37; Job 1.12,21; 23.14; 34.30; 37.13; Psalm 105.25; Isa. 10.15; 54.16; 63.17; John 12.40; Acts 2.23; 4.28; Rom. 9.18,19; 11.32 with Gal 3.22; 1 Thes. 3.3 (6) Prov. 16.4. (7) Isa. 43.7; Eph. 1.5,6; Rom. 9.23; (8) Rom. 8.29,30; 9.8,21; 1 Cor. 2.7; Eph. 1.4; 2 Thes. 2.13; 1 Pet. 1.2. (9) Exod. 9.16; Prov. 16.4; Rom. 3.5; 9.22; Isa. 54:16. (10) Deut. 4.37; 7.7,8; Josh. 24.2; Psalm 44.3; Ezek. 16.6,60; John 15.16,19; Acts 13:48; 22.14; Rom. 5.6; 9.11-16,18,23; 11.7,35; 1 Cor. 4.7; Eph. 1.4,5,11; 2.10; Col. 1.12; 2 Tim. 1.9. (11) Matt. 25.34; John 6.40,45; Acts 13.48; Rom. 8.29,30; 9.8,11,12,16,23; 11.7; Eph. 1.4,5,9,11; 2 Tim. 2.19; 1 Cor. 2.7,10. (12) Hos. 13.9; John 3.19. (13) Rom. 9.23. (14) Exod. 9.16; Psalm 33.15; Prov. 16.4; Rom. 9.11,12,13, where he saith not only that Esau was ordained to be hated before he did any evil (for in so saying he should not seem to exclude any thing but actual sin and incredulity) but saith expressly, before he was born, whereby he excludeth the original sin, and all that which might be considered in the person of Esau by his birth, from the cause of the hate. Therefore anon after, when he sheweth how the Reprobate murmur, and reply, he doth not say, that they speak in this sort: Why doth not God hate others alike, seeing they are also born in the same corruption that we be? The Apostle speaketh no such words, but he saith their reason is in this sort: who can resist his will? For hereof man’s reason gathereth, that they are unjustly condemned. And yet Paul doth not answer, that God would so, because he saw that they would be corrupt, and so consequently that the cause of his decree should be grounded on their corruption (the which answer had been clear and resolute, if it had been true) but forasmuch as he saith plainly, it so pleased God, and it was not in their power to change this his good pleasure, he bridleth man’s wisdom, that it might reverence and wonder at God’s mysteries, as it is most just to do. And also encourageth the Elect to honor the grace of God, which is declared and made famous by such a corruption. In this sort then the other places of the Scripture which conduct and lift us up to behold the sovereign will of God, which is the only rule of justice ought to be expounded. Isa. 54.16; 1 Sam. 2.25; John 6.44,45,64,65; 10.26; 12.39,40; 1 Pet. 2.8; and in divers other places. (15) 2 Thes. 2.10-12; Rom. 11.20; 2 Cor. 4.3,4; Heb. 12.17. (16) Rom. 8.30; Eph. 1.4,5.
The Third Chapter:
How God putteth in execution his eternal counsel, as well towards the Elect, as the Reprobate.
THE Lord God, that he might put in execution this eternal counsel, to his glory, prepared a way according to his infinite wisdom, indifferent both to those that he would choose, and those also which he would refuse. For when he determined to shew his infinite mercy in the salvation of the elect, and also his just judgment in the Condemnation of the Reprobate: it was necessary that he should shut up both under disobedience and sin, to shew his mercy to all (1) those that believe (2): that is to say, to the Elect: because faith is a gift of God which properly belongeth unto them (3): and contrariwise to have just cause to condemn them, to whom it is not given to believe (4), nor to know God’s mysteries (5). Therefore God did this in such sort, and with such wisdom, that the whole fault of the Reprobates damnation lieth in themselves: and on the other side, all the glory and praise of the Elects salvation belongeth wholly in his only mercy. For he did not create man a sinner, for then he should have been (with reverent fear be it spoken, the author of sin, which afterwards he could not justly have punished) but rather he made him after his own image (6): to wit, in innocency, purity, and holiness (7): who notwithstanding without constraint of any, neither yet forced by any necessity of concupiscence as touching his will (which as yet was not made servant to sin) (8), willingly and of his own accord rebelled against God: binding by this means the whole nature of man to sin, and so consequently to the death of body and soul (9). Yet we must confess that this fall came not by chance or fortune, seeing his providence doth stretch forth itself even to the smallest things (10), neither can we say, that any thing doth happen, that God knoweth not, or careth not for, except we would fall into the opinion of the Epicures, from the which God preserve us, neither yet by any bare or idle permission or sufferance, which is separate from his will and sure determination. For seeing he hath appointed the end, it is necessary also that he should appoint the causes which lead us to the same end, unless we affirm with the wicked Manichees that this end happeneth at all adventures, or by means of causes ordained by some other God. Furthermore we cannot think that any thing happeneth contrary to God’s will, except we deny blasphemously that he is omnipotent and almighty, As Augustine noteth plainly in his book De Correptione & Gratia. Cap. 104. We conclude therefore that this fall of Adam did so proceed of the motion of his will that notwithstanding it happened not without the will of God: whom it pleaseth by a marvelous and incomprehensible mean, that the thing which he doth not allow (for as much as it is sin) should not happen without his will. And this is done, as we said before, that he might shew the riches of his glory towards the vessels of mercy: and his wrath and power upon those vessels, which he hath made to set forth his glory by their shame and confusion (12). For the final end of God’s counsel is neither the salvation of the elect, nor the damnation of the reprobate: but the setting forth of his own glory, in saving the one by his mercy, and condemning the other by his just judgment. Then to avoid all these blasphemies, unto the which the infirmity of our wits doth draw us, let us confess that the corruption of the principal work that God hath made (which is man) is not happened by chance, nor without the will of him, who according to his incomprehensible wisdom, doth make and govern all things to his glory. Albeit we must confess (in despite of man’s judgment, which was limited in the beginning within a certain compass, and after was miserably corrupted) that the whole fault of his damnation lieth in man: forasmuch as betwixt the secret and incomprehensible will of God, and that corruption of man’s nature, which is the very first occasion of the reprobates damnation, the will of the first man is a mean, which being created good, hath willingly corrupted itself, and thereby opened the door to the just judgment of God, to condemn all those, to whom it doth not please him to shew mercy. And if they would yet object and cavil, saying, that they cannot resist the will of God (13), let us suffer them to their own destruction to plead against him, who will be able enough to defend his justice against their quarreling. Let us rather reverence that which passeth the reach and compass of our wits, and turn our minds wholly to praise his mercy, who by his only grace hath saved us, when we deserved the like punishment and damnation, and were no less sinners and wicked than they.
Notes of the thirde chapter.
(1) Rom. 11.32. (2) Gal. 3.22. (3) Acts 13.48; Eph. 2.8; 2 Thes. 3.2; Titus 1.1,2; Phil. 1.29; Gal. 5.22. (4) Matt. 13.11. (5) John 12.38,39. (6) Gen. 3. (7) Eph. 4.24. (8) Rom. 5.12; 7.20. (9) Rom. 5.12 etc. (10) Matt. 10.29,30; Prov. 16.33. (11) Rom. 9.21,22; 1 Pet. 2.8; Exod. 9.16; Prov. 16.4. (12) Exod. 9.16; Prov. 16.4; Isa. 54.16; Rom. 9.11,12,13,17,18, etc. (13) Rom. 9.13,19.
The Fourth Chapter:
By what order God proceedeth to declare and after a sort to execute his Election.
WHEN God had determined with himself the things before mentioned, he, by a more manifest order of causes, which notwithstanding was eternal (as all things are present to him) disposed orderly all the degrees, whereby he would bring his elect unto his kingdom. Forasmuch therefore as he is merciful, and yet could not forget his justice, before all other things it was necessary that a mediator should be appointed: by whom man might be perfectly restored, and that this should be done by the free mercy and grace which doth appear in the salvation of his elect. But man, besides that he is so weak, that it is not possible for him to sustain the weight of God’s wrath, doth also so much flatter himself in that his most miserable blindness, that he cannot perceive it (1): because he is wholly in bondage to sin (2): so that the law of God is to him as death (3), so far is he unable of himself to recover his liberty, or to satisfy the law of God in the very least jot. God therefore the most merciful father of the Elect, moderating in such sort his justice, with his infinite mercy, appointed his only son, who was the very same substance, and God eternal with him, that at the time determined, he should by the power of the holy (4) Ghost be made very man (5), to the end that both the natures being joined in Jesus Christ alone (6), first, all the corruption of man should be fully healed in one man (7), who should also accomplish all justice (8), and moreover should be able enough to sustain the judgment of God, and be a Priest sufficient and worthy of himself to appease the wrath of God his father, in dying as a just and innocent for them that were unjust and sinners, covering our disobedience, and purging all our sins which were laid upon him (9). And finally with one only offering and sacrifice of himself should sanctify all the elect, mortifying and burying sin in them by the partaking of his death and burial: and quickening them into newness of life by his resurrection (10): so that they should find more in him than they had lost in Adam (11). And to the intent this remedy should not be found and ordained in vain, the Lord God determined to give this his son with all things appertaining to salvation (12), to them whom he had determined in himself to choose: and on the other side, to give them unto his son, that they being in him, and he in them (13), might be consummate and made perfect in one, by these degrees that follow after, according as it pleased him to bring forth every one of his elect into this world. For first, when it pleaseth him to disclose that secret which he had purposed from before all beginning (14), at such time as men least look for it (15), as men are blinded and yet think they see most clear (16), when as in very deed death and damnation hangeth over their head (17), he cometh suddenly, and setteth before their eyes, the great danger wherein they are, and that they might be touched more sharply and lively, he addeth to the witness of their own conscience, being as it were asleep and dead, the preaching of his law (18), and the examples of his judgments, to strike them with the horror of their sins: nor that they should remain in that fear, but rather that beholding the great danger thereof, should fly to that only mediator Jesus Christ (19): in whom after the sharp preaching of the law, he setteth forth the sweet grace of the Gospel, but yet with this condition, that they believe in him (20), who only can deliver them from condemnation (21) and give them right and title to the heavenly inheritance (22). Yet all these things were but vain if he should only set before men’s eyes these secrets by the external preaching of his word written and published in the church of God, which notwithstanding is the ordinary means whereby Jesus Christ is communicate unto us (23): therefore as touching his Elect (24), unto the external preaching of his word, he joineth the inward working of his holy spirit, the which doth not restore (as the Papists imagine) the remnants or residue of free will (for what power soever of free will remaineth in us, serveth to no other use but willingly to sin (25), to fly from God (26), to hate him (27), and so not to hear him (28), nor to believe in him (29), neither yet to acknowledge his gift (30), no not so much as to think a good thought (31): and finally to be children of wrath and malediction,) but contrariwise changeth their hard hearts of stone into soft hearts of flesh (32), draweth them (33), teacheth them (34), lighteneth their eyes (35), and openeth their sense (36), their heart, their ears, and understanding: first to make them to know (as we have said before) their own misery: and next, to plant in them the gift of faith, whereby they may perform that condition, which is joined to the preaching of the Gospel. And that standeth in two points, the one, whereby we know Christ, in general, believing the story of Christ, and the Prophecies which are writ of him (37), the which part of faith, as we shall declare in due place, is sometimes given to the reprobate. The other, which is proper, and only belongeth to the elect, consisteth in applying Christ (who is universally and indifferently preached to all men) to ourselves, as ours: and that every man make himself sure of his Election, which hath been hid before all time in God’s secret (38), and afterwards revealed unto us, partly by inward testimony of our conscience through the holy ghost, joined to the external preaching of God’s word (39): and partly also by the virtue and power of the same spirit, who delivering the Elect from the servitude of sin (40), persuadeth and conducteth them to will and work the things which please God. These then be the degrees, whereby it pleaseth God to create and form by his especial grace, that precious and peculiar gift of faith in his elect, to the intent that they may embrace their salvation in Jesus Christ. But because this faith in us is yet weak and only begun, to the end that we may not only persevere in it, but also profit (which thing is most necessary for all men to do) first according to the time that our adoption is revealed unto us, this faith is sealed in our hearts by the Sacrament of Baptism: and after every day more and more is confirmed and sealed in us by the sacrament of the Lord’s Supper: of the which two Sacraments, the principal end is, that they be sure and effectual signs and pledges of the communion of the faithful with Christ (41) who is their wisdom, justice, sanctification, and redemption (42). For this occasion it is so oftentimes mentioned with Paul, that we being justified by faith, have peace with God (43): For whosoever hath obtained the gift of true faith, hath also by the same grace and liberality of God obtained the gift of perseverance (44). So that in all manner of temptations and afflictions, he doubteth not to call upon God, with sure confidence to obtain his request (as far as it is expedient for him) knowing that he is of the number of God’s children, who can not fail him (45). Moreover he never swerveth so from the right way, but at length by the benefit of God’s grace, he returneth again: for although faith sometime seem in the Elect (as it were for a time) hid and buried, so that a man would think it were utterly quenched (46) (which God suffereth, that men might know their own weakness) yet it doth never so far leave them, that the love of God and their neighbour, is altogether plucked out of their hearts. For no man is justified in Christ, who also is not sanctified in him (47), and framed to good works, which God prepared that we should walk therein (48). This is then the way whereby God by his mercy doth prepare (to the full execution of his eternal counsel) them amongst his Elect, whom it pleaseth him to reserve, till they come to ripe age and discretion. As touching the other whom he calleth into his kingdom so soon as they are born, or in their tender years, he useth a more short way. For seeing he doth comprehend in that his free covenant, whereof Jesus Christ is the mediator (49), not only the faithful, but also their posterity (50), into a thousand generations (51), calling the same by express words, holy (52): there is no doubt but the children of the Saints, which appertain to election, (whom he only knoweth) he hath given to his son, who will not cast them out (53).
Notes of the fourth chapter.
(1) John 9.41. (2) Rom. 1.18; 7.14; 8.7; 1 Cor. 2.14; 2 Cor. 3.5; Eph. 2.3. (3) Rom. 7.10 (4) Matt. 1.20; Luke 1.35. (5) John 1.14; 1 John 1.1-3. (6) Rom. 1.3,4; 2 Cor. 5.19; Col. 2.9. (7) Rom. 8.3. (8) Matt. 3.15; 5.17,18; 1 Cor. 1.30. (9) Isa. 53.4,5,7,11; Rom. 3.25; Acts 20.28; Col. 1.20; Rom. 5.19; 1 Pet. 2.24; 3.18; 2 Cor. 5.21. (10) Rom. 6.3,4,5. etc. Col. 3.1; 2.12; John 17.19; Heb. 9.13; 10.14. (11) Rom. 5.15,16,17,20. (12) Rom. 8.32; John 3.16. (13) John 17.2,6,9,11,12,23. (14) Gen. 3.15; 22.18; Rom. 3.25. and 16.25; 1 Cor. 2.7; Gal. 4.4; Eph. 1.9,10; Col. 1.26; 2 Tim. 1.9; Titus 1.2; 1 Pet. 1.20. (15) Josh. 24.2; Ezek. 16.8,9; Isa. 65.1; Eph. 2.3,4,5,12; Rom. 5.10; 1 Pet. 2.10. (16) John 9.41; John 3.19. (17) Rom. 1.18,19; 2.15; Acts 14.17. (18) Rom. 1.18,19; 2.15; Acts 14.17. (19) Rom. 7.7; 1 Tim. 2.5; 2 Tim. 2.25,26; Acts 2.37,38; 1 John 2.1. (20) John 1.12; 3.16; Rom. 1.16, and almost in every page of the whole Scripture. (21) Rom. 8.1; 1 John 2.1. (22) John 1.12, and 3.16; Rom. 1.16, and 5.1. (23) Rom. 10.8,17; 2 Cor. 5.18,19; Jam. 1.18; 1 Pet. 1.25. (24) Eph. 1.5,9; Col. 1.27. (25) Rom. 6.19,20. (26) Gen. 3.8; John 6.44,65. (27) Rom. 5.10; 8.7. (28) John 8.47. (29) Isa. 53.1; John 12.39. (30) Matt. 13.11; John 4.10; 3.3; 1 Cor. 2.14. (31) 2 Cor. 3.5. (32) Ezek. 11.19; 36.26; Psalm 51.12. (33) John 6.44. (34) John 6.45; 16.13; Psalm 119.33. (35) Psalm 119.130; Eph. 1.17. (36) Isa. 50.5; Psalm 10.17; 119.18,73,130; Col. 1.9. Jer. 31.18,19; 2 Tim. 2.25. (37) Luke 24.45, Acts 16.14. (38) 1 Cor. 2.10,11,12,16; Col. 1.26,27; Eph. 1.17-19; 1 John 3.24; 5.20. (39) Rom. 8.15; Gal. 4.6. (40) Rom. 8.14; 1 John 3.10,14; 4.14; Phil. 2.13; John 8.36; Rom. 6.18. (41) Mark 16.16; Acts 2.38; Rom. 6.3,4; Gal. 3.27; Col. 2.12; Eph. 5.26; 1 Pet. 3.21; 1 Cor. 10.16; Rom. 4.11. (42) 1 Cor. 1.30. (43) Rom. 3.20-22; 4.2,5; 5.1; and in divers other places. (44) and (45) Num. 23.19; Psalm 23.6; 27.1-3; Psalm 91 at large; Matt. 24.24; John 6.37; 17.15; 10.28,29; Rom. 5.2-5; 8.15,16,38,39; 1 Cor. 2.12,16; 2 Cor. 13.5; Eph. 1.9; Phil. 1.6; 1 Thes. 5.24; 2 Cor. 1.21; James 1.6; Heb. 4.16; 10.22; 1 John 4.17. (46) So Moses, Aaron, David, Peter fell. 1 John 1.8. (47) Rom. 6.1,2; and 1 John 3.9,10; 4.20; 2 Pet. 1.9. (48) Eph. 2.10; 1.4. (49) 1 Tim. 2.5; Heb. 9.15. (50) Gen. 17.7. (51) Exod. 20.6. (52) 1 Cor. 7.14. (53) John 6.37.
The Fifth Chapter:
After what sort almighty God doth execute and effectually declare his counsel touching Reprobation.
BY these things whereof we have now spoken, it may easily appear how God maketh them to go to their own place: (1) whom he created to that end that he might be glorified in their just condemnation. For as Christ the second heavenly Adam, is the foundation and very substance and effect of the Elect’s salvation: so also the first earthly Adam, because he fell, is the first author of the hate, and so consequently of the damnation of the reproved (2). For when God, moved with those causes which he only knoweth, had determined to create them to this end, to shew forth in them his just wrath and power (3), likewise he did orderly dispose the causes and means, whereby it might come to pass that the whole cause of their damnation might be of themselves, as hath been declared before in the third chapter. When man then was fallen willingly into that miserable estate whereof we have spoken in the chapter before, God who hateth justly the Reprobate, because they are corrupt, in part of them he doth execute his just wrath so soon as they are born (4): and towards the rest that be of age, whom he reserveth to a more sharp judgment, he observeth two ways clean contrary one to the other. For as concerning some, he sheweth them not so much favor, as once to hear of Jesus Christ, in whom only is salvation (5), but suffereth them to walk in their own ways (6), and run headlong to their perdition. And as for the testimonies that God hath left to them of his divinity (7), serve them to no other use but to make them without all excuse (8), and yet through their own default, seeing their ignorance and lack of capacity, is the just punishment of that corruption wherein they are born. And surely as touching that that they can attain unto in knowing God, by their light, or rather natural darkness (albeit they never failed in the way, but so continued) (9), yet were it not in no wise sufficient for their salvation. For it is necessary for us that shall be saved, that we know God, not only as God, but as our father in Christ (10): the which mystery flesh and blood doth not reveal (11), but the son himself, to them whom his father hath given him (12). As concerning others, their fall is more terrible (13). For he causeth them to hear by preaching the outward word of the Gospel (14), but because they are not of the number of the Elect, being called, they hear not (15), and forasmuch as they are not able to receive the spirit of truth (16), therefore they cannot believe, because it is not given unto them (17), wherefore when they are called to the feast, they refuse to come, so that the word of life is folly unto them, and an offence (18), and finally the savor of death to their destruction. (19.) There are yet others, whose hearts God openeth to receive and believe the things that they hear, but this is with that general faith, whereby the Devils believe and tremble (20). To conclude, they which are most miserable of all, those climb a degree higher, that their fall might be more grievous, for they are raised so high by some gift of grace, that they are a little moved with some taste of the heavenly gift (21): so that for the time they seem to have received the seed, and to be planted in the Church of God (22), and also shew the way of salvation to others (23). But this is plain that the spirit of adoption, which we have said to be only proper unto them which are never cast forth (24) but are written in the secret of God’s people (25), is never communicate unto them. For if they were of the Elect, they should remain still with the Elect (26). All these therefore (because of necessity, and yet willingly, as they which are under the slavery of sin (27)), return to their vomit (28) and fall away from faith (29) are plucked up by the roots, to be cast into the fire (30). I mean, they are forsaken of God (31), who according to his will (the which no man can resist (32), and yet for all that because of their corruption and wickedness) (33), hardeneth them (34), maketh their hearts fat, stoppeth their ears, and blindeth them (35): and to bring this to pass, he useth partly their own vile concupiscences, to the which he hath given them up to be ruled and led by (36), and partly the spirit of lies, who keepeth them wrapped in his snares (37), by reason of their corruption, from the which as out of a fountain, issueth a continual flowing river of infidelity, ignorance, and iniquity: whereby it followeth that (they) having as it were made shipwreck of their faith, can by no means escape the day, which is appointed for their destruction, that God may be glorified in their just condemnation (38).
Notes of the fifth chapter.
(1) Acts 1.25; Rom. 9.22; Matt. 25.41. (2) Rom. 5.18; 1 Cor. 15.21, etc. (3) Exod. 9.16; Rom. 9.17,22. (4) Exod. 20.5; Eph. 2.3; Rom. 5.14. (5) Matt. 1.21; Acts 4.12. (6) Acts 14.16,17; 17.30; Rom. 1.24; Eph. 2.11. (7) Rom. 1.19,20; Acts 14.17; 17.27. (8) Rom. 1.20; John 15.22; Rom. 2.12. (9) Rom. 1.21,22. (10) John 17.3; 3.36. (11) Matt. 11.27; 16.17. John 1.13; 3.5,6. (12) Matt. 11.27. (13) Luke 12.47. (14) Matt. 22.14; Luke 13.34; 19.42. (15) Jer. 7.27,28; Prov. 1.24. (16) John 14.17. (17) John 12.39,40; 2 Thes. 3.2; Matt. 13.11. (18) 1 Cor. 1.18,23. (19) 2 Cor. 2.15,16. (20) James 2.19. (21) Heb. 6.4. (22) Acts 8.12; Matt. 13, and in many other places which we have above recited in the 2nd chapter. (23) Acts 1.17. (24) John 6.37. (25) Ezek. 13.9; Rev. 22.18. (26) 1 John 2.19. (27) John 8.34; Rom. 5.12; 6.19,20; and 7.14; and 8.7. (28) 2 Pet. 2.22. (29) 1 Tim. 4.1. (30) Matt. 15.13; John 15.2. (31) Acts 14.16. (32) Rom. 9.19. (33) Rom. 1.27,28; 2 Thes. 2.9-11; John 3.19. (34) Isa. 63.17; Exod. 4.21; Deut. 2.30, and in many other places above recited in the 2nd chapter. (35) Isa. 6.10; Rom. 11.32. (36) Exod. 8.32; Psalm 95.8; Acts 7.42; Rom. 1.26. (37) 2 Kings 22.23; 2 Cor. 4.4; 2 Tim. 2.26; (38) 1 Tim. 1.19; Prov. 16.4; Exod. 9.16; Rom. 9.21,22, etc.
The Sixth Chapter.
Of the last and full execution and accomplishment of God’s eternal counsel, as well towards the Elect as the Reprobate.
FOR as much as God is justice itself, it is necessary that he should save the just, and condemn the unjust. Now they amongst men are only just, who being by faith joined to Christ (1), grafted (2), rooted in him (3), and made one body with him (4), are justified and sanctified in him, and by him: whereof it followeth, that the glory to the which they are destinate (5), to the glory of God (6), appertaineth to them as by a certain right or title. On the other part, they which remain in Adam’s pollution and death, are justly hated of God: and so condemned by him, not excepting so much as them which die before they sin, as Adam did (7). But both these manners of executing God’s judgments, as well in these as in the other which are elected are in three sorts: whereof we have already declared the first. For the Elect in that same moment that they have received the gift of faith, have after a certain sort passed from death to life (8), whereof they have a sure pledge (9). But this their life is hid in Christ, till this corporal death make them to step a degree further, and that the soul being loosed out of the bands of the body, enter into the joy of the Lord (10). Finally, in the day appointed to judge the quick and the dead (11), when that which is corruptible and mortal shall be clad with incorruptibleness and immortality, and God shall be all in all things, then they shall see his majesty face to face, and shall fully enjoy that unspeakable comfort and joy, which before all beginning was prepared for them, which is also the reward that is due to the righteousness and holiness of Christ: who was given for their sins, and raised again from death for their justification: by whose virtue and spirit they have proceeded and gone forward from faith to faith, as shall manifestly appear by the whole course of their life, and good works (12). Whereas altogether contrary, the Reprobate conceived, born, and brought up in sin, death, and wrath of God (13), when they depart out of this world, they fall into another gulf of destruction, and their souls are plunged in that endless pain (14), until the day come that their bodies and souls being joined again, they shall enter into everlasting fire, which is prepared for the devil and his angels (15). Then by these two ways (which are clean contrary one to another) the last issue and end of God’s judgments shall set forth manifestly his glory to all men, forasmuch as in his Elect he shall declare himself most just and most merciful. Most just, I say, for that he hath punished with extreme rigor and severity the sins of his elect in the person of his son, neither did receive them into the fellowship of his glory, before he had fully and perfectly justified and sanctified them in his son. And most merciful, for as much as he freely appointed with himself to elect them, and according as he had purposed, chose them freely in his son, by calling, justifying, and glorifying them, by means of that same faith which he had given them through the same grace and mercy. On the other side, touching the Reprobate, their corruption and infidelity, with such fruits as come thereof, and testimony of their own conscience, shall so reprove and accuse them, that although they resist and kick against the prick: yet the most perfect justice of God shall be manifest and shine by all men’s confession in their just condemnation.
Notes of the sixth chapter.
(1) John 17.21. (2) Rom. 6.5. (3) Col. 2.7. (4) 1 Cor. 10.16. (5) Rom. 8.30; 1 Cor. 1.30; 2 Cor. 5.5; Rom. 9.23. (6) Rom. 3.25,26. (7) Rom. 5.14; Eph. 2.3; John 3.36. (8) and (9) John 5.24; 2 Cor. 1.21,22; 5.5; 1 Cor. 1.6-8; Rom. 8.25; Eph. 1.13,14; in the same 2.6; Rom. 5.2. (10) Luke 23.43; Matt. 22.31,32; Luke 16.22; Phil. 1.23. (11) and (12) 2 Tim. 4.1; Acts 3.21; Rom. 8.21; 1 Cor. 15; 1 Cor. 13; Matt. 25.34; Rom. 4.25; 1.17. (13) Rom. 5.12; 7.14; Eph. 2.3. (14) Luke 16.2,23,24. (15) Matt. 25.41.
The Seventh Chapter:
After what sort this doctrine may be preached with most profit.
SINCE we have now declared the effect of this doctrine: it remaineth also that we shew what order we think best to be observed in preaching and applying the same to every particular man. Whereas many find this matter so sharp and strange, that they flee from it as from a dangerous rock: it is partly to be attributed to the malice and arrogance of men: and partly to the rashness and lack of discretion of them that teach it. And thirdly it is to be imputed to their ignorance which can not orderly apply the same to themselves, which faithfully and truly hath been taught of others. Concerning them which sin of malice, it only appertaineth to God to amend them: which surely he hath done always in his season, and likewise will do from time to time, to whom he hath appointed to shew mercy. But for others which remain obstinate in their sin and wickedness, there is no cause why we should be moved either for their number or authority, or dissemble God’s truth. And as touching the second sort, I have thought these things principally to be observed in preaching this mystery.
First as in all other things (1), so chiefly in this matter of Predestination, they ought to take diligent heed, that instead of God’s pure and simple truth, they bring not forth vain and curious speculations or dreams (2): which thing they can not choose but do, which go about to compass and accord these secret judgments of God with man’s wisdom, and so do not only put difference betwixt Predestination and the purpose of God, which thing they must needs do, but separate the one from the other: for they either imagine a certain naked and idle permission, or else make a double purpose and counsel in God. From the which errors they must needs fall into many and great absurdities. For sometimes they are constrained to divide those things which of themselves are joined most straitly: and sometimes they are compelled to invent a great sort of foolish and dark distinctions, wherein the further they occupy themselves and search, the wider they stray from the purpose, and so entangle their miserable brains, that they can find no way out. This then ought to be avoided with all careful diligence, chiefly in this matter which above all other ought purely and sincerely to be taught in the Church of God.
Moreover as much as is possible let them take heed (though sometimes for a more clear understanding of things a man may be bold godly and reverently to do) that no strange manner of speech, or not approvable by God’s word, be used: and also that such phrases and words which the Scriptures approve, be expounded fitly, lest otherwise any man should take occasion of offence, which as yet is rude and ignorant. Furthermore we must have good respect unto the hearers (3), wherein also we must make distinction betwixt the malicious and the rude: and again betwixt them which are willful ignorant, and those which are not capable through a simple and common ignorance. For to that further sort our Lord is accustomed to set forth plainly the judgment of God (4): but the other must be led by little and little to the knowledge of the truth (5). Likewise we must take heed that we have not so much respect to the weak, that they in the mean season which are apt to understand, be neglected, and not sufficiently taught: whereof we have notable examples in Paul, which declare to us the wisdom and circumspection which he observed in this matter, chiefly in the 9, 10, 11, 14, and 15th chapters of the Epistle to the Romans. Also, except some great cause let (hinder), that they begin at the lowest and most manifest causes, and so ascend up to the highest (as Paul in his Epistle to the Romans which is the right order and way to proceed in matters of divinity, from the law goeth to remission of sins, and thence by steps he mounteth till he come to the highest degree) or else let them consist in that point which is most agreeable to the text or matter which they have in hand, rather than contrariwise to begin at the very top of this mystery, and so come down to the foot. For the brightness of God’s majesty, suddenly presented to the eyes, doth so dim and dazzle the sight, that afterwards, if they be not through long continuance accustomed to the same, they wear blind, when they should see other things.
What then remaineth? That, whether they begin beneath and ascend upwards, or contrariwise, above, and come downward to the lowest degree, they take always heed, lest omitting that which ought to be in the midst, they leap from one extremity to another, as from the eternal purpose, to salvation, and much more from salvation to the eternal purpose: Likewise from God’s eternal counsel to damnation, or backward from damnation to his purpose: leaving the near and evident causes of God’s judgment. Except perchance they have to do with open blasphemers and contemners of God, who have need of nothing else, but the sharp pricks of God’s judgments: or else with men so trained and exercised in God’s word, that there be no suspicion of any offence. Finally, that they never so propound this doctrine, as if it should be applied to any one man particularly (6), although men must be used after divers sorts, some by gentleness, and some by sharpness, unless some Prophet (7) of God be admonished by some special revelation, which thing because it is out of course, and not usual, ought not lightly to be believed. When the ministers also visit the sick, or use familiar and private admonitions, it is their duty to lift up and comfort the afflicted conscience, with the testimonial of their Election, and again to wound and pierce the wicked and stubborn, with the fearful judgment of God: so that they keep a mean, refraining ever from that last sentence, which admitteth no exception nor condition. For this right and jurisdiction only appertaineth to God (8).
Notes of the seventh chapter.
(1) Matt. 28.20. (2) 2 Tim. 2.23. (3) 2 Tim. 2.15. (4) Matt. 23, the whole chapter; John 8.44; 9.41; 10.26; Luke 20.46; Matt. 23.38. (5) 1 Cor. 3.2; Rom. 14.1. (6) John 8.33,34; Phil. 3.2; 1 Tim. 6.3,4. (7) 2 Tim. 4.14; John 6.64,70. (8) Matt. 12.38,39, with John 8.24.
The Eighth Chapter:
How every man may with profit apply this universal doctrine to himself.
IT is most evident, that they which teach that man’s salvation either in part or wholly dependeth and is grounded in works, destroy the foundation of the Gospel of God (1). And contrariwise, they that teach Justification freely by faith, ground on a sure foundation, but so, that they build upon that eternal counsel of God, whereupon Christ himself (2), and the Apostle Paul following Christ’s steps, groundeth his doctrine (3). For seeing perseverance in faith is requisite to salvation (4), to what purpose shall faith serve me except I be sure of the gift of perseverance? Nor we need not fear, lest this doctrine make us negligent, or dissolute: for this peace of conscience whereof we speak (5), ought to be distinct and separate from foolish security, and he that is the son of God, seeing he is moved and governed by the spirit of God, (6), will never through the consideration of God’s benefit take occasion of negligence, and dissolution. Then if by this doctrine we had but this one commodity, that we might learn to assure and confirm our faith against all brunts that might happen, it is manifest that they which speak against, and resist this article of religion, either through their wickedness, or else through ignorance, or some foolish blind zeal, which happeneth when men will measure God according to the capacity of their own wits, subvert and destroy the principal ground and foundation of our salvation. And in very deed though some (as I must confess) do it not purposely: yet do they open notwithstanding the door to all superstition and impiety. As for them, which nowadays maliciously oppugn the truth, I beseech the Lord, even from the heart, either to turn their minds (if so be they appertain to the elect) or else to send them a most speedy destruction, that by their own example they may confirm and establish that doctrine, which so maliciously they resist. These other I will desire most instantly, and require them in the name of God, that they would better advise themselves what they do.
Now to touch briefly how this doctrine may be applied, let us mark that all the works of God, even the least of all, are such that man cannot judge of them, but in two sorts: that is, either when they are done, or else by foreseeing them to come to pass by the disposition of the second and manifest causes, whose effects have been diligently, and by long use observed, as men accustom in natural things to do: wherein, notwithstanding men are wonderfully blind. In this matter then, which is most obscure of all others, it is no marvel if man’s wit be driven into this strait, that it cannot otherwise understand but by this means, what is determined as touching himself in this secret counsel of God. But because these are most high mysteries (1 Cor. 2.7), and therefore stand in the observation of those causes which pass all natural things, we must needs seek further, and come to God’s word: which forasmuch as without all comparison, it is more certain than man’s conjectures: so it can best direct us herein, and assure us.
The scripture then witnesseth (7) that all those that God hath, according to his counsel, predestinate, to be adopted his children through Jesus Christ, are also called in their time appointed, yea and so effectually, that they hear the voice of him that calleth, and believe it (8): so that being justified and sanctified in Jesus Christ, they are also glorified. Wilt thou then, whosoever thou art, be assured of thy Predestination, and so, in order, of thy salvation, which thou lookest for, against all the assaults of Satan? Assured I say, not by doubtful conjectures, or our own fantasy, but by arguments and conclusions, no less true and certain (9), than if thou were ascended into Heaven, and had heard of God’s own mouth his Eternal decree and purpose? Beware thou begin not at that most high degree: for so thou shouldest not be able to sustain the most shining light of God’s majesty. Begin therefore beneath at the lowest order, and when thou shalt hear the voice of God (10) sound in thine ears, and in thy heart, which calleth thee to Christ the only mediator, consider by little and little, and try diligently (11), if thou be justified and sanctified in Christ through faith: for these two be the effects or fruits, whereby the faith is known, which is their cause. As for this thou shalt partly know by the spirit of adoption, which crieth within thee, Abba, father (12): and partly by the virtue and effect of the same spirit, which is wrought in thee. As if thou fall, and so declare indeed that although sin dwell in thee, yet it doth no more reign in thee (13): for is not the holy ghost he that causeth us not to let slip the bridle, and give liberty willingly to our naughty and vile concupiscences (14), as they are accustomed, whose eyes the prince of this world blindeth (15), or else who moveth us to pray when we are cold, and slothful? who stirreth up in us those unspeakable groanings (16)? who is he that when we have sinned (yea and sometimes willingly and wittingly) engendereth in us an hate of the sin committed, and not for the fear of punishment which we have therefore deserved, but because we have offended our most merciful father (17)? Who is he, I say, that testifieth unto us that our sighings are heard, and also moveth us to call daily God, our God, and our Father, even at that time when we have trespassed against him (18)? Is it not that spirit, which is freely given to us as a gift, for a sure and certain pledge of our adoption (19)? Wherefore if we can gather by these effects, that we have faith, it followeth that we are called and drawn effectually. And again, by this vocation, which we have declared properly to belong to the children of God; that is evidently proved which we took in hand to shew, that is, forasmuch as we were Predestinate by the Eternal counsel and decree of God, (the which he had determined in himself) to be adopted in his son, therefore we were given to him, whereof the conclusion followeth, that since by the most constant will of God (20), which only is grounded on itself, and dependeth on none other thing, we are predestinate, and no man can take us out of the hands of the son: also seeing that to continue and persevere in the faith is necessary, it followeth, I say, that the hope of our perseverance is certain, and so consequently our salvation: so that to doubt any more of it, is evil and wicked (21). So far then it is against reason to say, that this doctrine maketh men negligent or dissolute, that contrariwise, this alone doth open us the way, to search out and understand, by the power of the holy Ghost, God’s deep secrets, as the Apostle plainly teacheth (22), to the end that when we know them (albeit we know them here in this world but after a sort (23), so that we must daily fight with the spiritual armor against distrust (24,) we may learn to behave ourselves not idly, but rather to persevere valiantly (25), to serve and honor God, to love him, to fear him, to call upon him, that daily more and more as saith Peter, as much as in us lieth, we may make our vocation and election certain (26). Moreover how shall he stand sure and constant against so many grievous temptations, both within and without, and against so many assaults of fortune (as the world doth term it) that is not well resolved in this point which is most true? That is, that God according to his good will, doth all things whatsoever they be, and what instruments and means soever he useth in working of the same, for the commodity of his Elect (27). Of the which number he is, that findeth himself in this danger and trouble (28). As touching the other point, which concerneth Reprobation, because no man can call to mind the determinate purpose of Election, but at the same instant the contrary will come to remembrance: (besides that in the holy Scripture these two are oftentimes joined together) it must needs be, that such as esteem this part curious or unprofitable, and therefore not to be talked of, do great injury to the spirit of God. Therefore this part is to be weighed and considered, but with such modesty, that the height of God’s judgments may at all times bridle our curious fancies, in such sort that we do not apply it particularly to any man, nor to any certain company. For in this also it differeth from Election, because Election (as hath been said) is revealed to us by the spirit of God within ourselves, not in others, whose hearts we can not know. And Reprobation is ever hid from men, except it be disclosed by God, contrary to the common course of things. For who can tell, if God have determined to shew mercy at the last hour of death, to him which hath spent all his life past lewdly and wickedly (29)? But this trust (hope) ought not to encourage any man to maintain, and continue in his sin and ungodliness. For I speak of those things which we ought to consider in others, for the examples of such mercy of God are very rare, neither any man that is wise will promise to himself through a vain security and trust, that thing which is not in his own power (30.) It is therefore sufficient if we understand generally that there be vessels prepared to perdition (31): the which, seeing God doth not reveal unto us who they are, we ought both in example of life and prayer, diligently endeavour to win and recover to their salvation, yea even very such, of whom by seeing their horrible vices, we almost despise (32). And if we observe this order, we shall receive great fruit of this doctrine. For first by the knowledge hereof, we shall learn humbly to submit ourselves to the majesty of God, so that the more we shall fear and reverence him, the more we ought to labour to confirm in ourselves the testimony of our election in Christ (33). Furthermore when we shall diligently consider the difference, which through the mercy of God is betwixt men, which are all alike subject to the selfsame curse and malediction, it can not be, but we must acknowledge and embrace more earnestly the singular goodness of God, than if we did make this grace common to all men indifferently, or else referred the cause of the inequality of this grace to men (34). Besides this, when we know that faith is a special gift of God, shall we not receive it more willingly when it is offered, and be more careful to have the same to increase, than if we should imagine (as some do) that it is in every man’s power to turn and repent when he will, because (they say) the Lord would that all men should be saved, and will not the death of a sinner? Finally, when we see the doctrine of the Gospel not only despised of all the world, but also cruelly persecuted: and when we see so great falsehood and rebellion amongst men, what thing can better confirm and fortify us, than to be assured that nothing chanceth by fortune, that God knoweth his (35), and that they which commit these things (except God turn their hearts) are those which are destinate, not by chance, but by the sure and eternal counsel of God, to be as it were a glass, wherein the anger and power of God doth appear? Truth it is, that these things can never be so commodiously and perfectly treated of, that man’s reason and wit cannot find out something to reply always to the contrary, yea and so kindleth with desire of contradiction, that it is ready to bring an action against God, and to accuse and blame him as chief author of all things. But let the Devil roar and discontent himself, and the wicked kick and wince: yet their own conscience shall reprove and condemn them (36) when as ours, being confirmed in the truth, by the grace and mercy of our God, shall deliver and free us (37), in the day of Christ. To whom with the Father, and the holy Ghost, praise, glory, and honor be given for ever. So be it.
Notes of the eight chapter.
(1) Gal. 2.21; Rom. 11.6. (2) John 6.44,45, and in divers places besides. (3) Rom. 8.29,30; 9.10,11, and the whole chapter; 1 Cor. 2.10; Eph. 1.4,5,9; 2 Tim. 1.9; 1 Pet. 1.2, and in divers places besides. (4) Matt. 10.22. (5) Rom. 5.1,5; Matt. 5.12; 24.48. (6) Rom. 8.14. (7) Rom. 8.29,30; Eph. 1.4,5,9. (8) John 10.27. (9) Rom. 5.2; 8.38; 1 Cor. 2.10,11; 2 Tim. 1.7; 1 John 3.24. (10) Psalm 95.7,8; John 10.27. (11) 2 Cor. 13.5. (12) Gal. 4.6; 1 John 3.24; 1 Cor. 2.10,11, and in divers other places which we have already alleged. (13) Rom. 6, almost through the whole chapter; 1 John 3.9. (14) Rom. 6.11,12; Eph. 4.29,30. (15) 2 Cor. 4.4. (16) Rom. 8.26. (17) Rom. 7.24. (18) Rom. 8.15,16. (19) Rom. 8.27; Eph. 4.30; 1.13,14; 2 Cor. 1.22, and in other places oftentimes. (20) Rom. 11.29; Heb. 6.17; 2 Tim. 2.19. (21) Rom. 8.38; John 3.33; Rom. 4.20,21; 5.5; Eph. 3.12; Heb. 4.16; 1 Cor. 1.9; 1 Thes. 5.24; Heb. 10.22,23. (22) 1 Cor. 2.10-12; Rom. 8.16; 1 John 3.24. (23) 1 Cor. 13.9. (24) 1 Tim. 6.12; Gal. 5.17. (25) Rom. 6.1; Heb. 10.23,24; James 3.17,18. (26) 2 Pet. 1.10. (27) Rom. 8.28,31, even to the very end of the chapter; Job 13.15; Rom. 5.3; James 1.2. (28) Rom. 8.16,38,39. (29) Luke 23.43. (30) James 4.13-15; 2 Tim. 2.25; Luke 12.20. (31) Rom. 9.21; 2 Tim. 2.20. (32) Matt. 5.16; 1 Cor. 9.22; 1 Pet. 2.12. (33) Phil. 2.12; 1 Pet. 1.17; Rom. 11.20. (34) Rom. 9.23. (35) 2 Tim. 2.18,19. (36) Rom. 2.15. (37) 1 Pet. 3.21.