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Scho. These things are indeed daily done, so as we sufficiently perceive that God hath an eye both to the godly and the wicked, and so as the kingdom of God may seem to be fair begun in this world; yet we pray that with continual increasing it may grow so far, that all the reprobate that by the motion of Satan stubbornly and obstinately resist and strive against God's truth, and defiling themselves with all vices and heinous sins, refuse to submit themselves to the kingdom and dominion of God, being once subdued and destroyed, and the tyranny of Satan himself utterly rooted out, and all the enemies slain, oppressed, and trodden down, so as nothing may once breathe against the beck and power of God, he alone may every where gloriously reign, imperially rule, and triumph. And as, while God reigneth by his Spirit in us, men have a certain community with God in this world, so we pray and wish that he will also by Christ communicate with us in heaven the joy of the most blessed kingdom, and the glory that in everlasting ages of worlds shall never be changed; that we may be not only children but also heirs of our heavenly Father, which desire also we verily nothing distrust or doubt, that our heavenly Father will one day grant us to enjoy.


Of Heresies.

Of Predestination. Chap. 22.

Lastly, there are many in the Church living the most savage and dissolute lives, who being in fact curious, puffed up with luxury, and far alienated from the Spirit of Christ, continually debate on predestination and rejection, or as it is commonly called, reprobation; imagining that, because God may have certainly determined concerning either salvation or destruction, they may thence derive an excuse for their evil deeds, their wickedness, and their frowardness of every description. And when their pastors reprove them for their dissipated and flagitious life, they transfer the guilt of their crimes to the will of God, and fancy that with this defence they avert the censure of their monitors; and thus at length, by the instigation of the Devil, they are either cast headlong into present desperation, or fall into a dissolute and inactive carelessness of life, without either penitence or consciousness of sin. Which two evils seem indeed to be of a different nature but to lead to the same end. We, however, taught by the Holy Scripture, lay down such a doctrine in this matter as is authorized by a diligent and accurate consideration of our predestination and election (concerning which it was

determined by the will of God before the foundations of the world were laid.) This diligent and serious consideration of these matters, of which we speak, soothes the minds of pious men who are endued with the Spirit of Christ with the sweetest and most delightful consolation, subduing the flesh and their earthly members, and raising them to heavenly things; it confirms our faith of eternal salvation to which we are to be brought through Christ; enkindles the warmest. love towards God, marvellously excites to thanksgiving, leads us directly to good works, and diverts us as far as possible from sin, inasmuch as we are the elect of God, and his appointed children: which singular and eminent condition requires from us the highest purity of manners and the greatest perfection of virtue. Lastly it diminishes our pride, lest we should believe that we can effect by our own strength, what is granted by the gratuitous beneficence and infinite goodness of God. Besides we conceive that no one can urge from hence any excuse for his sins, for God has ordained nothing in any respect unjustly, nor does he force our wills unconsentingly to sin. Wherefore all are to be admonished by us, that in the conduct of their actions they are not to refer to the decrees of predestination, but to accommodate the whole tenour of their lives to the laws of God, forasmuch as they may observe that both the promises to the good, and the threatenings to the bad are generally proposed in the Holy

Scriptures. We ought to enter in the service of God by those ways, and abide by that will of God which we see plainly pointed out in the Holy Scriptures.


Of Vocation.


Vocation, or Calling to the knowledge of the Saviour and the Covenant of Grace, is the first mean by which Election in Christ, according to the order of Predestination, is made effectual to salvation ;it is the first step in the ladder on which fallen man is led upwards by divine grace to Heaven; it is the first link in that admirable chain of causes and effects by which the Eternal Purpose of the Deity is progressively accomplished, and the end of the mysterious scheme of human Redemption, through the merits of the incarnate Son of God, is connected with its beginning.

§ 2. To the Fathers, who looked not only for transitory promises in the Old Testament, to Abraham and his seed were the assurances of the Messias given; and to the Jews, the chosen depositaries of the Oracles of God, was the offer of everlasting life by Christ: confined, the Gentiles being excluded as strangers to the Covenants of Promise till the time arrived for the establishment of the Christian Church,

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