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in time past suffered all nations to walk in their own ways. Psalm 1. 21, These things hast thou done, and I kept silence. 2. God doth limit and restrain men in their sins. Psalm lxxvi. 10, The remainder of wrath shalt thou restrain. 2 Kings xix. 28, Because thy rage against me is come up into my ears, therefore I will put my hook in thy nose, and my bridle in thy lips, and I will turn thee back, &c. 3. God doth direct and dispose men's sins to good ends, beyond their own intentions. Isaiah x. 5, 6, 7, O Assyrian, the rod of mine anger, I will send him against an hypocritical nation, namely, to chastise it for their sin ; howbeit he meaneth not so, neither doth his heart think so, &c. Gen. 1. 20, But as for you, ye thought evil against me; but God meant it unto good, to save much people alive.
Q. 6. What are the properties of God's providence ? - A. 1. God's providence is most holy. Psal. cxlv. 17, The Lord is righteous in all his ways, and holy in all his works. 2. God's providence is most wise. Psal. civ. 24, O Lord, how manifold are thy works! (speaking of the works of providence, as well as creation,) In wisdom hast thou made them all. 3. God's providence is most pow. erful. Dan. iv. 35, He doth according to his will in the army of heaven, and among the inhabitants of the earth; and none can stay his hand. Psal. Isvi. 7, He ruleth by his power forever.
Q. 12. What special act of providence did God exercise towards man, in the estate wherein he was created ?
A. When God had created man, he entered into a covenant of life with him, upon condition of perfect obedience; forbidding him to eat of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, upon pain of death.
Q. 1. What is a covenant ? .. . .
A. A covenant is a mutual agreement and engagement between two or more parties, to give or do something.
Q. 2. What is God's covenant with man?
promise, of giving something, with a-stipulation, or re.
Q. 3. How many covenants hath God made with man?
A. There are two covenants which God hath made with man. 1. A covenant of works. 2. A covenant of grace. : . 4. When did God enter into a covenant of works with man?
A. God did enter into a covenant of works with man immediately after his creation, when he was yet in a state of innocency, and had committed no sin.
Q. 5. What was the promise of the covenant of works, which God made with man?, · A. The promise of the covenant of works was a pro. mise of life ; for. God's threatening death upon man's disobedience. Gen. ii. 17, implieth his promise of life upon man's obedience. , ; ¿ Q. 6. What life was it that God promised to man in the covenant of works?
A. The life that God promised to man in the covenant of works, was the continuance of natural and spiritual life, and the donation of eternal life.
Q . 7. Wherein doth natural, spiritual, and eternal life consist? * A. 1. Natural life doth consist in the union of the soul
and body. 2. Spiritual life doth consist in the union of ; God and the soul. 3. Eternal life doth consist in the perfect, immutable, and eternal happiness, both of soul and body, through a perfect likeness unto, and an immer diate vision and fruition of God the chief good.
Q. 8. What was the condition of the first covenant, and that which God required on man's part, in the covenant of works?
A. The condition of, and that required by God on man's part, in the covenant of works, was perfect obedience. Gal. iii, 12, The law is not of faith ; but the man that doth them shall live in them, (compared with the loth verse, As many as are of the works of the law, are under the curse ; for it is written, Cursed is every one that continueth not in all things which are written in the book of the law to do them.
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R. 9. In what respect was this obedience (required of man in the first covenant) to be perfect?
A. The obedience required of man in the first covenant, was to be perfect, l. In respect of the matter of it; all the powers and faculties of the soul, all the parts and members of the body, were to be employed in God's service, and made use of as instruments of righteousness. 2. It was to be perfect in respect of the principle, namely, habitual righteousness, and natural disposition and inclination to do any thing God required, without any indisposition or reluctance, as the angels do obey in heaven. 3. It was to be perfect in respect of the end, which was chiefly to be God's glory, swaying in all actions. 4. It was to be perfect in respect of the manner; it was to be with perfect love and delight, and exactly with all the circumstances required in obedience. 5. It was to be perfect in respect of the time, it was to be constant and perpetual.
Q. 10. What is the prohibition, or the thing forbidden in the covenant of works?
A. The thing forbidden in the covenant of works, is the eating of the tree of knowledge of good and evil. Gen. ii. 16, 17, And the Lord God commanded, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat; but of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it.
Q. 11. Why was this tree called the tree of the knowl. edge of good and evil?
A. Because man, by eating the fruit of this tree, did know experimentally what good he had fallen from, and had lost, namely, the image and favour of God; and what evil he was fallen into, namely, the evil of sin and misery.
Q. 12. What was the penalty or punishmentithreatened upon the breach of the covenant of works?
. A. The punishment threatened upon the breach of the covenant of works, was death. Gen. iit 17, In the
day thou eatest thereof, thou shalt surely dic. Rom. vi. . 23, The wages of sin is death.
Q. 13. What death was it that God threatened as the punishment of sin ?
A., The death which God threatened as the punisha ..., ment of man's sin, was temporal death, spiritual death;. and eternal death.
Q. 14. Wherein doth temporal, spiritual and eternal death consist?
A. 1. Temporal death doth consist in the separation of the soul from the body: this man was liable unto, in the day that he did eat of the forbidden fruit, and not before. 2. Spiritual death doth consist in the separation of the soul from God, and the loss of God's image : this death seized upon man in the moment of his first sin. 3. Eternal death doth consist in the exclusion of man from the comfortable and beatifical presence of God in glory forever, together with the immediate impressions of God's wrath, effecting most horrible anguish in the soul, and in the extreme tortures in every part of the body eternally in hell.
Q. 13. Did our first parents continue in the estate wherein they were created ?
A. Our first parents, being left to the freedom of their own will, fell from the estate wherein they were created, by sinning against God.
Q. 1.. What is meant by the freedom of the will ?
A. By the freedom of the will is meant a liberty in the will, of its own accord, to choose or refuse; to do or not to do; to do this or to do that, without any constraint or force from any one.
Q. 2. How many ways may the will be said to be free?
A. The will may be said to be free three ways. 1. When the will is free only to good; when the will is not compelled or forced, but freely chooseth only such things as are good : thus the will of God (to speak after the manner of men) is free only to good, he can neither do nor will any thing that is evil : such also is the freedom of the wills of angels, and such will be the freedom of all the glorified saints in heaven ; there neither is, nor will be any inclination of the will unto any evil thing forever, and yet good will be of free choice. 2. The will may be said to be free only unto evil, when the will is not consi.
strained, but freely chooseth such things as are evil and sinful : thus the will of the devil is free only unto sin ; and thus the wills of all the chileiren of men in the world, while in a state of nature, are free only unto sin. 3. The will may be said to be free both unto good and evil, when it sometimes chooseth that which is good, sometimes chooseth that which is evil : such is the freedom of the wills of all regenerate persons, who have in some measure recovered the image of God; they choose good freely, through a principle of grace wrought in them by the spirit : yet through the remainder of corruption, at some times their wills are inclined to that which is sinful.
Q. 3What freedom of will had man at his first creation ?
A. The freedom of will which man had at his first creation, was a freedom both to good and evil : though the natural inclination and disposition of his will was only to good; yet being mutable or changeable, through temptation it might be altered, and might become inclinable unto evil. . , Q. 4. How were our first parents left to the freedom of their own wills?
A. Our first parents were left by God to the freedom of their own wills, when God withheld that further grace (which he was ríowise bound to give unto them) which would have strengthened them against the temptation, and preserved them from falling into sin.
Q. 5. How did our first parents fall, when they were left to the freedom of their own wills? .
· A. Our first parents being left to the freedom of their own wills, through the temptation of the devil, who spake unto them in the serpent; through the desirableness of the fruit of the forbidden tree to their sensual appetite ; and through the desirableness of being made wise, and like unto God by eating thereof, unto their rational appe
tite; and through the hopes of escaping the punishment • of death threatened by God, they did venture against the • express command of God, to eat of this tree : the woman * being first beguiled and perverted by the devil, did eat ;
and then the man being persuaded by his wife, and the