Obrazy na stronie

obéir à Jésus-Christ et pour être to obey Jesus Christ and to be bathed in his blood.

arrosé de son sang.

XI. Nous croyons que Dieu, XI. We believe that God, who qui à tant aimé le monde que de so loved the world that he gave donner son fils unique, ordonne his only Son, now orders every présentement à tout homme, en tout lieu, de se convertir; que chacun est responsable de ses péchés et de son incrédulité; que Jésus ne repousse aucun de ceux qui vont à lui, et que tout pécheur qui invoque ly appeals to him will be saved. sincèrement son Nom sera sauvé.

XII. Nous croyons que le SaintEsprit applique aux élus, par le moyen de la Parole, le salut que le Père leur a destiné et que le Fils leur a acquis; de telle sorte que, les unissant à Jésus par la foi, il habite en eux, les affranchit de l'empire du péché, leur fait comprendre les Ecritures, les console et les scelle pour le jour de la rédemption.

XIII. Nous attendons des cieux le Seigneur Jésus-Christ, qui transformera le corps de notre humiliation pour le rendre conforme au corps de sa gloire, et nous croyons qu'en cette journée-là, les morts qui sont en Christ sortant à sa voix de leurs tombeaux, et les fidèles qui vivront alors sur la terre, transmués par sa puissance, seront enlevés tous ensemble dans les nuées à sa rencontre, et qu'ainsi nous serons toujours avec le Seigneur.

man, in every place, to be converted; that every one is responsible for his sins and his unbelief; that Jesus repels none who go to him; and that every sinner who sincere

XII. We believe that the Holy Ghost applies to the chosen ones, by means of the Word, the salvation which the Father has destined for them and which the Son has bought, so that, uniting them to Jesus by faith, he dwells in them, delivers them from the sway of sin, makes them understand the Scriptures, consoles them and seals them for the day of redemption.

XIII. We expect from heaven our Saviour Jesus Christ, who will change our body of humiliation and make it conform to his own body of glory; and we believe that, in that day, the dead who are in Christ, coming out from their tombs at his voice, and the faithful then living on the earth, all transformed through his power, will be taken up together into the clouds to meet him, and that thus we shall always be with our Saviour.


[The fifteen Theological Theses or Propositions of ROBERT BARCLAY, which are the text of his 'Apology,' contain the most authoritative summary of the principles and doctrines of the RELIGIOUS SOCIETY OF FRIENDS, commonly called QUAKERS. The 'Apology' appeared first in Latin, 1675, and then repeatedly in English and other languages, and was widely distributed by the Society as a standard doctrinal treatise. I have taken the text from the magnificent copy of the 8th English edition, Birmingham, 1765, 4to. On this and other Quaker Confessions, see Vol. I. pp. 864 sqq.]




To the Doctors, Professors, and Students of Divinity in the Universities and Schools of Great Britain, whether Prelatical, Presbyterian, or any other;

ROBERT BARCLAY, a Servant of the Lord God, and one of those who in derision are called Quakers, wisheth unfeigned repentance, unto the acknowledgment of the Truth.

FRIENDS,-Unto you these following propositions are offered; in which, they being read and considered in the fear of the Lord, you may perceive that simple, naked truth, which man by his wisdom hath rendered so obscure and mysterious that the world is even burthened with the great and voluminous tractates which are made about it, and by their vain jangling and commentaries, by which it is rendered a hundredfold more dark and intricate than of itself it is: which great learning, so accounted of—to wit, your school divinity, which taketh up almost a man's whole lifetime to learn, brings not a whit nearer to God, neither makes any man less wicked, or more righteous than he was. Therefore hath God laid aside the wise and learned, and the disputers of this world; and Hath chosen a few despicable and unlearned instruments, as to letter-learning, as he did fishermen of old, to publish his pure and naked truth, and to free it of those mists and fogs wherewith the clergy hath clouded it, that the people might admire and maintain them. And among several others, whom God hath chosen to make known these things-seeing I also have received, in measure, grace to be a dispenser of the same gospel-it seemed good unto me, according to my duty, to offer unto you these propositions; which, though short, yet are weighty, comprehending much, and declaring what the true ground of knowledge is, even of that knowledge which leads to Life Eternal; which is here witnessed of, and the testimony thereof left unto the Light of Christ in all your consciences. Farewell, R. B.


Concerning the true Foundation of Knowledge.

Seeing the height of all happiness is placed in the true knowledge of God (This is life eternal, to know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom thou hast sent'),' the true and right understanding

1 John xvii. 3.

of this foundation and ground of knowledge is that which is most necessary to be known and believed in the first place.


Concerning Immediate Revelation.

Seeing 'no man knoweth the Father but the Son, and he to whom the Son revealeth him;'1 and seeing the revelation of the Son is in and by the Spirit; therefore the testimony of the Spirit is that alone by which the true knowledge of God hath been, is, and can be only revealed; who as, by the moving of his own Spirit, he converted the chaos of this world into that wonderful order wherein it was in the beginning, and created man a living soul, to rule and govern it, so by the revelation of the same Spirit he hath manifested himself all along unto the sons of men, both patriarchs, prophets, and apostles; which revelations of God by the Spirit, whether by outward voices and appearances, dreams, or inward objective manifestations in the heart, were of old the formal object of their faith, and remain yet so to be; since the object of the saints' faith is the same in all ages, though set forth under divers administrations. Moreover, these divine inward revelations, which we make absolutely necessary for the building up of true faith, neither do nor can ever contradict the outward testimony of the Scriptures, or right and sound reason. Yet from hence it will not follow that these divine revelations are to be subjected to the examination, either of the outward testimony of the Scriptures or of the natural reason of man, as to a more noble or certain rule or touchstone; for this divine revelation and inward illumination is that which is evident and clear of itself, forcing, by its own evidence and clearness, the well-disposed understanding to assent, irresistibly moving the same thereunto; even as the common principles of natural truths move and incline the mind to a natural assent: as, that the whole is greater than its part; that two contradictory sayings can not be both true, nor both false which is also manifest, according to our adversaries' principle, who supposing the possibility of inward divine revelations-will nevertheless confess with us that neither Scripture nor sound reason will contradict it: and yet it will not follow, according to them, that

'Matt. xi. 27.

the Scripture or sound reason should be subjected to the examination of the divine revelations in the heart.


Concerning the Scriptures.

From these revelations of the Spirit of God to the saints have proceeded the Scriptures of truth, which contain: 1. A faithful historical account of the actings of God's people in divers ages, with many singular and remarkable providences attending them. 2. A prophetical account of several things, whereof some are already past, and some yet to come. 3. A full and ample account of all the chief principles of the doctrine of Christ, held forth in divers precious declarations, exhortations, and sentences, which, by the moving of God's Spirit, were at several times, and upon sundry occasions, spoken and written unto some churches and their pastors: nevertheless, because they are only a declaration of the fountain, and not the fountain itself, therefore they are not to be esteemed the principal ground of all truth and knowledge, nor yet the adequate primary rule of faith and manners. Nevertheless, as that which giveth a true and faithful testimony of the first foundation, they are and may be esteemed a secondary rule, subordinate to the Spirit, from which they have all their excellency and certainty; for as by the inward testimony of the Spirit we do alone truly know them, so they testify that the Spirit is that guide by which the saints are led into all truth: therefore, according to the Scriptures, the Spirit is the first and principal Leader.' And seeing we do therefore receive and believe the Scriptures, because they proceeded from the Spirit, therefore also the Spirit is more originally and principally the rule, according to that received maxim in the schools, Propter quod unumquodque est tale, illud ipsum est magis tale. Englished thus: 'That for which a thing is such, that thing itself is more such.'


Concerning the Condition of Man in the Fall.

All Adam's posterity, or mankind, both Jews and Gentiles, as to the first Adam, or earthly man, is fallen, degenerated, and dead, deprived

'John xvi. 13; Rom. viii. 14.



of the sensation or feeling of this inward testimony or seed of God, and is subject unto the power, nature, and seed of the Serpent, which he sows in men's hearts, while they abide in this natural and corrupted state; from whence it comes that not their words and deeds only, but all their imaginations are evil perpetually in the sight of God, as proceeding from this depraved and wicked seed. Man, therefore, as he is in this state, can know nothing aright; yea, his thoughts and conceptions concerning God and things spiritual, until he be disjoined from this evil seed, and united to the Divine Light, are unprofitable both to himself and others: hence are rejected the Socinian and Pelagian errors, in exalting a natural light; as also of the Papists, and most Protestants, who affirm that man, without the true grace of God, may be a true minister of the gospel. Nevertheless, this seed is not imputed to infants, until by transgression they actually join themselves therewith; for they are by nature the children of wrath, who walk according to the power of the prince of the air.


Concerning the Universal Redemption by Christ, and also the Saving and Spiritual Light, wherewith every man is enlightened.


God, out of his infinite love, who delighteth not in the death of a sinner, but that all should live and be saved, hath so loved the world that he hath given his only Son a Light, that whosoever believeth in him should be saved; who enlighteneth every man that cometh into the world, and maketh manifest all things that are reprovable, and teacheth all temperance, righteousness, and godliness: 2 and this Light enlighteneth the hearts of all in a day,3 in order to salvation, if not resisted: nor is it less universal than the seed of sin, being the purchase of his death, who tasted death for every man; 'for as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive.' 4

'Rom. v. 12, 15; Eph. ii. 1.

'Ezek. xviii. 23; Isa. xlxix. 6; John iii. 16; i. 9; Titus ii. 11; Eph. v. 13; Heb. ii. 9. Pro tempore: for a time.

1 Cor. xv. 22.

« PoprzedniaDalej »