Imatges de pÓgina

Rom. iii. 25. Whom God beth Set forll, mpor9 r10, fore-ordained to be a propitiation.

1 Pet. i. 20. Who verily was fore-ordained before the foundation of the world; that is, to be the Lamb flain. See chap. ii. 4.

Luke xxii. 29. And I appoint unto you a kingdom, as my Father bath appointed unto me.

Acts xvii. 31. Because be batb'appointed a day in the which he will judge the world in righteousness by that man whom be baib ordained. See also chap. x. 42.

Ifa. xliii. t. Behold my servant whom I uphold, mine eleet, in wbom my soul delighterb. See Mátt. xii. 18.

Luke xxii. 22. And truly the Son of man goetb, as it was determined, but wa #nto tbát man by wbom be is betrayed.

A&sii: 23. Him, being delivered by the determinate counsel and for e-knowledge of God, ye have taken, &c. Chap. iv. 28.-For to do whatsoever tby band and tby counsel determined before to be done.

Secondly, Angels also are the objects of predestination, good and bad ; the blessed angels are chosen unto life, and to continue in their happy ftate to alt eternity : and their perseverance therein, änd eternal felicity, are owing to the eternal choice of them in Christ their head; I charge thee before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, and the eleɛt angels, that tboů observe these things, i Tim. v. 21. The evil angels are rejected of God, and left in that miserable estate their apostacy brought them into, without any provision of grace and mercy for them : they are delivered into čbains of darkness, to be reserved to the judgment of the great day, and everlasting fre is prepared for them, according to the determinate counsel and will of God, 2 Pet. ii. 4. Matt. xxv. 41.

Thirdly, Predestination which the scriptures chiefly treat of, is what respects men, and consists of two parts, ele&tion and reprobation; the one is a predestination unto life, the other unto death

1. Éle&tion, which is a predestination into life, is an act of the free grace of God, of his sovereign and immutable will, by which from all eternity he has choseh in Chrift, out of the common mass of mankind, some men, or a certain number of them, to partake of spiritual blessings héré, and happiness hereafter, for the glory of his grace.

1. The objects of election are some men, not all, which a choice fupposes; to take all would be no choice; called therefore a remnant according to the election of grâce, Rom. xi. 5. These are a certain number which though unknown to us, how many, and who they are, are known to God; the Lord knows them that are bis, 2 Tim. ii. 19. And though they are in themselves a great multitude, which no man can number, Rev. vii. 9. yet when compared with those, from whom they are chosen, they are but few; many be called, but few chosen, Matt. xx. 16. These are chosen our of the same common mass of mankind, be ir considered as corrupt or pure; all were on an equal level when the choice was made ; bath not the potter power over the clay of the same lump, to make one vessel unto honour, and another unto dishonour ? Rom. ix. 21. these are not whole nations, churches, and communities, but particular persons, whose names are written in the Lamb's book of life; Jacob bave I loved, &c. Salute Rufus chosen in tbe Lord: according as he bath cholen us in him, &c. Rom. ix. 13. and xvi. 13. Eph. i. 4. not a sett of prepositions, but persons ; not characters, but men; or not men under such and such characters, as believers, holy, &c. but men as having done neither good nor evil; before they had done either, Rom. ix, 11.


2. This act of election, is an act of God's free grace, to which he is not moved by any motive or condition in the object chosen; wherefore it is called the election of grace; concerning which the Apostle's reasoning is strong and invincible; and if by grace, then it is no more of works, otherwise grace is no more grace; but if it be of works, then is it no more grace; otherwise work is no more work, Rom. xi. 5, 6. It is according to the fovereign and unchangeable will of God, and not according to the will or works of men : baving predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of bis will, Eph. i. 5. and again, ver. 11. being predestinated according to the purpose of him who worketh all things after the counsel of his own will; hence it stands immutably firm and sure, even the purpose of God according to ele&tion, not of works, but of him that calletb, Rom. ix. II.

3. This act of election is irrespective of faith, holiness, and good works, as causes or conditions of it; faith flows from it, is a fruit and effect of it, is secured by it, and is had in consequence of it: as many as were ordained unto eternal life, believed, Acts xiii. 48. hence it is called the faith of God's elect, Tit. i. 1. and though holiness is a means provided in the act of election, it is not the cause of it; men are chosen, not because they are, but tbat they should be boly, Eph. i. 4. good works do not go before, but follow after election, it is denied to be of them, as before observed, and it paffed before any were done, Rom. ix. 11. and xi. 5, 6. they are the effects of God's decree, and not the cause of it; God bath fore-ordained them, that we fould walk in them, Eph, ii. 10.

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4. The act of election was made in Christ, as the head, in whom all the elect were chosen, and into whose hands, by this act of grace, were put their persons, grace, and glory; and this is an eternal act of God in him; according as be hath chofen us in him before the foundation of the world, Eph. i. 4. and so the apostle tells the Thessalonians, 2 Thess. ii. 13. God hath from the beginning chosen you unto salvation ; not from the first preaching of the gospel to them, or from the time of their conversion by it; but from the beginning of time, even from all eternity, as the phrase is used in Prov. vii. 23. hence nothing done in time could be the cause or condition of it.

5. What men are chosen unto by this act are, grace here, and glory hereafter ; all spiritual blessings, adoption, justification, sanctification, belief of the truth, and salvation by Jesus Christ. Salvation is the end proposed with respect to men; fanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth are the means appointed and prepared for that end. Eph. i. 4, 5. Hath chosen us in him,—that we Mould be boly and without blame before him in love: Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children, &c. 2 Theff. ii.


We are bound to give thanks to God alway for you, brethren, beloved of the Lord; because God bath from the beginning chosen you to salvation, through fanétification of the Spirit and belief of the truth. 1 Pet. i. 2. EleEt according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through fančtification of the Spirit unto obedience, and Sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ. i Theff. v. 9. For God bath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ.

6. Both means and end are sure to the chosen ones, since this is an act of God's immutable will; these are redeemed by the blood of Christ: he died for their fins, and made satisfaction for them; they are justified by his righteousness, and no charge can be laid against them; they are effectually called by the grace of God; they are sanctified by his Spirit; they persevere to the end, and cannot totally and finally be deceived and fall away, but shall be everlastingly glorified : Rom. viii. 33. Who Mall lay any thing to the charge of God's eleet? It is God that justifieth : Whois be that condemneth? that is, the elect. It is Cbrist that died, that died for them. Rom. viii. 30. Whom he did predestinate, them be also called: and whom be called, them be also justified: and whom he juftified, them be also glorified. Matt. xxiv. 24. For there hall arise false Chrifts, and false Prophets, and shall new great signs and wonders, insomuch that if it were possible they shall deceive the very eleet ; but that is not possible.

7. The ultimate end of all this, with respect to God, is his own glory; the glory of all his divine perfections; the glory of his wisdom in forming such a scheme, in fixing on such an end, and preparing means suitable unto it; the


glory of his justice and holiness, in the redemption and salvation of these chosen ones, through the blood, righteousness, and sacrifice of his Son; and the glory of his rich grace and mercy exhibited in his kindness to them through him ; and the whole of it is, To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein be bath made us accepted in the beloved, Eph. i. 6.

This now is the scripture doctrine of predestination, or that part of it which is called election ; from whence it appears to be absolute and unconditional, irrespective of any thing in man as the cause and condition of it.

Mr Wesley believes, that, “election is a divine appointment of some men to eternal happiness ;” so that he owns a particular and personal election, and calls it an eternal decree ; but believes that it is conditional: but if it is conditional, the condition is to be named ; let him name the condition of it; let him point it out to us, and in what passage of scripture it is ; this lies upon himn to do, and I insist upon it, or else he ought to give up his unscriptural notion of conditional election. Mark xvi. 16. is no expression of this decree, but a declaration of the revealed will of God; and points out to us what will be the everlasting state of believers and unbelievers : But believers, as such, are not the objects of God's decree ; it is true, indeed, that they who are real believers, are the elect of God; but then the reason why they are the elect of God is, not because they are believers, but they become believers because they are the elect of God; their faith is not the cause or condition of their election, but their election the cause of their faith ; they were chosen when they had done neither good nor evil, and so before they believed ; and they believe in time, in consequence of their being ordained unto eternal life, from eternity : faith is in time, election before the world was; nothing temporal can be the cause or condition of what is eternal. This is the doctrine of the scriptures; if Mr Wesley will not attend to these, let him hear the articles of his own church; the seventh of which runs thus :

“ Predestination to life is the everlasting purpose of God, whereby (be“ fore the foundations of the world were laid) he hath constantly decreed by « his counsel, fecret to us, to deliver from curse and damnation those whom he

hath 'chosen in Christ out of mankind, and to bring them by Christ to ever

lasting salvation, as vessels made to honour. Wherefore they which be ens dued with so excellent a benefit of God, be called according to God's purpose “ by his Spirit working in due season : they through grace 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 re


ligiousy in good works, and at length by God's mercy, they attain to ever

lasting felicity.” This is an article agreeable to the Scripture; an article of his own church; an article which he as a true son of the church, has treacherously departed from ; an article which Mr Wesley must have subscribed and sworn to ; an article which will fare him in the long as subscriptions and oalbs stand for any thing with him.

The doctrine of election, as above stated, standing in so glaring a light in the sacred scriptures, and appearing with such evidence, as is impossible for all the art and sophistry of men to set aside ; the other branch of predestinacion necessarily follows, which we deny not, but maintain. Mr Wesley would have an election found out which does not iinply reprobation ; but what election that can be, the wit of man cannot devise; for if some are chosen, others must be rejected; and Mr Wesley's notion of election itself implies it ; for if, as he says, “election means a divine appointment of fome men to eternal hap

piness;" then others must be left out of that choice, and rejected. I proceed therefore,

II. To the other branch of predestination commonly called Reprobation ; which is an immutable decree of God, according to his sovereign will, by which he has determined to leave some men in the common mass of mankind, out of which he has chosen others, and to punish them for sin with everlasting destruction, for the glory of his power and justice. This decree consists of two parts, a negative and a positive; the former is by some called preterition, or a pafling by, a leaving some when others are chosen ; which is no other than non-election; the latter is called pre-damnation, being God's decree to condemn or damn men for sin.

First, Preterition is God's act of passing by, or leaving some men when he chose others, according to his sovereign will.and pleasure ; of which act of God there is clear evidence in the facred scripture ; as well as it is necessarily implied in God's act of election, which has such clear and incontestable proof. There are o noutos, the reft, thofe that remain uneleated whilst others are chosen; the eléttion batb obtained it; or select persons obtain righteousnesș, life, and, falvation, in consequence of their being chofe; and the rest are blinded, Rom. ix. 7. being 'left, they remain in their native darkness and ignorance, and for their fins are given up to judicial blindness and hardness of heart. These are they that are left out of the book of life, whilst ochers, have their names 'written in it; of whom it is faid, whose names are vet: written in the book


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