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of the haughty contempt of the people manifested by Rehoboam "was of God, that the Lord might perform his word, which he spake by the hand of Ahijah" his servant, (y) See how the sacred union is divided, in opposition to the will of God, and yet by his will the ten tribes are alienated from the son of Solomon. Let us add another similar example, where with the consent, and even by the assistance of the people, the sons of Ahab are massacred, and all his posterity exterminated, (r) Jehu indeed truly observed, that "there should fall into the earth nothing of the word of the Lord," but that he had "done that which he spake by his servant Elijah." And yet he justly reprehends the citizens of Samaria for having lent their assistance. " Are ye righteous?" says he; "behold, I conspired against my master, and slew him: but who slew all these?" If I am not deceived, I have now clearly explained how the same act displays the criminality of men, and the justice of God. And to modest minds this answer of Augustine will always be sufficient: "Since God delivered Christ, and Christ delivered his own body, and Judas delivered the Lord, why in this delivery is God righteous and man guilty? Because in the same act they acted not from the same cause." But if any persons find greater difficulty in what we now assert, that there is no consent between God and man, in cases where man by his righteous influence commits unlawful actions, let them remember what is advanced by Augustine in another place: "Who can but tremble at those judgments, when God does even in the hearts of the wicked whatsoever he pleases, and yet renders to them according to their demerits?" And certainly it would no more be right to attribute to God the blame of the perfidy of Judas, because he decreed the delivery of his Son, and actually delivered him to death; than to transfer to Judas the praise of redemption. Therefore the same writer elsewhere informs us, that in this scrutiny God inquires, not what men could have done, nor what they have done, but what they intended to do, that he may take cognizance of their design and their will. Let those to whom there appears any harshness in this procedure, consider a little how far their obstinacy is

{/]) 1 Kings xii. 15. 2 Chron. x. 15. (r) 2 Kings x. 7,9,10.

tolerable, while they reject a truth which is attested by plain testimonies of Scripture, because it exceeds their comprehension, and condemn the publication of those things which God, unless he had known that the knowledge of them would be useful, would never have commanded to be taught by his Prophets and Apostles. For our wisdom ought to consist in embracing with gentle docility, and without any exception, all that is delivered in the sacred Scriptures. But those who oppose this doctrine with less modesty and greater violence, since it is evident that their opposition is against God, are unworthy of a longer refutation.


On the Knowledge of God the Redeemer in Christ, which was revealed first to the Fathers under the Law, and since to us in the Gospel.


1 HE discussion of the first part of the Apostolic Creed, on the knowledge of God the Creator, being finished, is followed by another, on the knowledge of God the Redeemer in Christ, which is the subject of this Second Book.

It treats, first, of the occasion of redemption, that is, the fall of Adam; secondly, of the redemption itself. The former of these subjects occupies the first five chapters; the remaining ones are assigned to the latter.

On the occasion of redemption, it treats, not only of the fall in general, but also of its effects in particular; that is, of original sin, the slavery of the will, the universal corruption of human nature, the operation of God in the hearts of men—Chap. I—IV. to which is subjoined a refutation of the objections commonly adduced in defence of free will—Chap. V.

The discourse on redemption may be divided into five principal parts. It shews,

1. In whom salvation must be sought by lost man, that is in Christ— Chap. VI.

2. How Christ has been manifested to the world: which has been* in two ways; first, under the law (which introduces an explanation of the Decalogue, and a discussion of some other things relative to the Law)—Chap. VII. VIII.; secondly, under the Gospel, which leads to a statement of the similarity and difference of the two Testaments—Chap. IX—XI.

3. What kind of a being it was necessary for Christ to be, in order to his fulfilment of the office of a Mediator; that is, God and man in one person—Chap. XII—XIV.

4. The end of his mission from the Father into the world—Chap. XV. which explains his prophetical, regal, and sacerdotal offices.

5. The methods or steps by which he fulfilled the part of a Redeemer, to procure our salvation—Chap. XVI. which discusses the articles relating to his crucifixion, death, burial, descent into hell, resurrection, ascension to heaven, session at the right hand of the Father, and the benefits arising from this doctrine. Then follows Chap. XVII. a solution of the question, Whether Christ merited for us the grace of God and salvation?

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The Fall and Defection of Adam the Cause of the Curse inflicted on all Mankind, and of their Degeneracy from their primitive Condition. The Doctrine of Original Sin.

X HERE is much reason in the old adage, which so strongly recommends to man the knowledge of himself. For if it be thought disgraceful to be ignorant of whatever relates to the conduct of human life, ignorance of ourselves is much more shameful, which causes us, in deliberating on subjects of importance, to grope our way in miserable obscurity, or even in total darkness. But in proportion to the utility of this precept ought to be our caution not to make a preposterous use of it; as we see some philosophers have done. For while they exhort man to the knowledge of himself, the end they propose is that he may not remain ignorant of his own dignity and excellence: nor do they wish him to contemplate in himself any thing but what may swell him with vain confidence, and inflate him with pride. But the knowledge of ourselves consists, first, in considering what was bestowed on us at our creation, and .the favours we continually receive from the Divine benignity, that we may know how great the excellence of our nature would have been, if it had retained its integrity; yet at the same time, recollecting that we have nothing properly our own, may Vol. I. 2 K

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