Obrazy na stronie

holy and good (as creatures depending upon and worshiping God, and practising justice and equity in their dealings with each other, and the like) is not therefore holy and good, because it is commanded to be done ; but is therefore commanded by God, because it is holy and good. The existence indeed of the things themselves, whose proportions and relations we consider, depend entirely on the mere arbitrary will and good pleasure of God, who can create things when he pleases, and deitroy then again whenever he thinks fit. But when things are created, and so long as it pleases God to continue them in being, their proportions, which are al stradtly of eternal necessity, are also in the things themselves absolutely unalterable. Hence God himself, though he has no fuperior, from whose will to receive any law of his actions, yet dildains not to observe the rule of equity and goodness as the law of all his actions in the government of the world, * Ezek. xviii. and condescends to appeal even to men for the equity and righteousness of his judgements. To this law, the infinite perfections of his divine nature make it necessary for him (as has been before proved +) to have constant regard; and (as a learned prelate of our own I has excellently shown), not barely his infinite power, but the rules of this eternal law, are the true foundation and the measure of his dominion over his creatures. Now for the same reason that God, who hath no superior to determine him, yet constantly directs all his own actions by the eternal rule of justice and goodness; it is evident all intelligent creatures, in their several spheres and proportions, ought to obey the same rule according to the law of their nature; even though it could be supposed separate from that additional obligation of its being the positive will and command of God. And doubtless there have been many men in all ages in many parts of the heathen world, who not having philofophy enough to collect from mere nature any tolerably just and explícit apprehensions concerning the attribute of God, much less having been able to deduce froin thence any clear and certain knowledge of his will, have yet had a very great sense of right and truth, and been fully persuaded in their

* Ke9'ruã; yao in ausn ápran iso tū parxcepiwy zártura üst sj ń avon der ind urpátin si Oő. Origen, adverí. Cell ilb. IV. + Pag, 13a.

1“ Dia amina divini in telle&tus fanciuntur in leges apud ipfum valiruras, per immutabi. « licatem fuarum perfe&ionum.” Cumberland, de Leg. Naturx, P. 142.

“ Solebam ipfe quidem, cum aliis plurimis, antequam domiai juris ue omnis originem " aniversaliter & diftinéte confideraffem; dominium Dei, in creationem velue integrain " ejus originem, refolvere. Verum quoviam, &c.-in hanc tandem concedii sententiam, “ dominium Dei effe jus vel poreftatem vi a lua lapientia & bonitate, vrlut a lege, datain " ad regimen corum omnium quæ ab ipso unquam creata fuerine vel creabuntur. --Nec " terit quisquam merito conqueri, dominium dei intra nimis angustis limites hac explica" tione coerceri; qua hoc unum dicirur, illius nullam partem confitiere in poteitate quic

quam faciendi contra finem optimum, bonum commune.” Idem. p. 345, 346.

Contrà autem, Hobbiana resolutio dominii divini in pocenuam cjus irresistibilem adno " apertè ducit ad, &c. -ut mihi dubium non fit, illud ab eo tietom fuitle, Denque attribu“ tum, in eum tantom finem, ut juri fuo omnium in omoia parrocaretur." Io. p. 344.

“ Nos e contrario, fontem indicavimus, e quo demonitrari poreit, juftitiam universalem, "omnemque adeo virturem moralem, quæ in reétore requiritur, in Deo præ cæteris resul.

gere, eadem planè methodo, qua homines ad eas excolendas obligasi ostendemus." ld. P. 347.


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own minds of many unalterable obligations of morality. But this fpeculation, though necessary to be taken notice of in the distinct order and method of discourse, is in itself too dry, and not of great use to us, who are abundantly assured that all moral obligations are moreover the plain and declared will of God; as shall be shown particularly in its proper place.


Lastly, this law of nature has its full obligatory power, antecedent to all consideration of any particular private and personal reward or punishment, annexed either by natural consequence, or by positive appointment, to the observance or neglect of it. This also is very evident: because, if good and evil, right and wrong, fitness and unfitness of being practiied, be (as has been shown) originally, etcrnally, and neceffarily, in the nature of the things themselves, it is plain that the view of particular rewards or punishments, which is only an after-consideration, and does not at all alter the nature of things, cannot be the original cause of the obligation of the law, but is only an additional weight to enforce the practice of what men were before obliged to by right reason. There is no man, who has any just sense of the difference between good and evil, but must needs acknowledge, that virtue and goodness * are truly amiable, and to be chosen for their own fakes and intrinsic worth, though a man had no prospect of gaining any particular advantage to himself by the practice of them; and that, on the contrary, cruelty, violence, and oppreffion, fraud, injustice, and all manner of wickedness, are of themselves hateful, and by all means to be avoided, even † though a man had absolute assurance, that he should bring no manner of inconvenience upon himself by the commission of any or all of these crimes. This likewise is excellently and admirably expressed by Cicero: “ Virtue,” faith he I, “ is that, which, though no profit

or advantage whatsoever was to be expected to a man's self from " the practice of it, yet must without all controversy be acknowledged 66 to be truly desirable for its own sake alone. And accordingly $ all

good * “ Dignæ itaque funt, quæ propter intrinfecam fibi perfe&tionem appetantur, eriam $ molla eset naturæ lex, quæ illas imperaret." Cumberland, de Leg. Nat. p.281.

Ανής δίκαιός εςιν, εχ ο μή άδικων,
sza 5sos co.krūv osnivar Mein Bóderes.
0:'d' : pix si a repericeveer emioxilo.
'Αλλ' ος τα μεγάλα καρτερεί μη λαμβάνον,
*Εγειν δυνάμεις και κριθείν αζημίας.
Ουδ' ός γε ταυ τα πάντα διατηρεί μόνη,
'Αλλ' ες.ς αεολον γοησίαν τ' έχων φύσιν,

Eives dira, kas doriin lines Sinen. Philemonis Fragmenta. " Honefum id intelligimus, quod talc eft, ut detracta omni utilitate, fine ullis præmiis Be fructibusque, per seipfum roilic jure laudari.” Cic. de Finib. II.

“ Atque hæc omnia propres se fo!um, ut nihil adjungagur emolumenti, petenda sunt." Id. de Inventione, lib. II.

“ Nihil eft de quo minus dubitari post, quam & honefta expetenda per fe, & codem o mido turpia per le effe fugienda." Id. de Finib. lib. III.

§ “ Jus & omne honettum, fua fponte cft expetendum. Eienim omnes viri boni, ipsam " zquitatem & jus ipfum amant." Id. de Legib. lib. I.

« Optimi

good men love right and equity; and do many things without any prospect of advantage at all, merely because they are just and

right, and fit to be done.” On the contrary, “ Vice is so odious ss in its own nature, and so fit to be avoided, even though no pu“ nishment was to ensue; that * no man, who has made any

toler“ able proficiency in moral philosophy, can in the least doubt, but, “ if he was sure the thing could be for ever concealed entirely both “ from God and men, so that there should not be the least suspicion " of its being ever discovered; yet he ought not to do any thing “ unjustly, covetously, wilfully, passionately, licentiously, or any way “ wickedly. Nay, † if a good inan had it in his power to gain all “ his neighbour's wealth by the least motion of his finger, and was “ sure it would never be at all suspected either by God or man ; "unquestionably he would think, he ought not to do it. And “ whoever wonders at this has no notion what it is to be really a “ good man.” Not that any such thing is possible in nature, that any wickedness can be indeed concealed from God; but only, upon such a supposition, the natural and necessary difference between justice and injustice is made to appear more clearly and undeniably. YET IT DOES NOT FROM THENCE AT ALL FOLLOW, EITHER THAT


Thus far is clear. But now from hence it does not at all follow, either that a good man ought to have no respect to rewards and punishments, or that rewards and punishments are not absolutely necessary to maintain the practice of virtue and righteousness in this present world. It is certain, indeed, that virtue and vice are eternally and necessarily different; and that the one truly deserves to be chosen for its own sake, and the other ought by all means to be avoided, though a man was sure for his own particular, neither to gain nor lose any thing by the practice of either. And, if this was truly the state of things in the world, certainly that man must have a very corrupt mind, indeed, who could in the least doubt, or so much as once deliberate with himself, which he would choose. But the case does not stand thus. The question now in the general

“ Oprimi quique permulta 'ob eam unam caufam faciunt, quia decet, quia re&tum, " quia honeftum cft; etfi nullum consecuturum emolumentum vident." Id. de Finib. lib. II.

*" Satis enim nobis (fi modo aliquid in philosophia profecimus) persuasum esse det et, “ fi omnes deos hominesque celare possimus, nihil tamen avare, nihil injufte, nih.1 l bi“ dinore, nihil incontinenter efle faciendum.” Id. de Offic. lib. III.

« Si nemo fciturus, nemo ne fufpicaturus quidem fit, quum aliquid divitiarum, potentiæ, u dominationis, libidinis caufa feceris; si id diis hominibusque futurum fit semper ignotum,

fisne fa&turus?! Id. ibid.

+ " Itaquc fi vir bonus habcat hanc vim ; ut, li digitis concrepuerit, poflit in locupletum « teamerta nomen ejus irrepere; hac vi non utatur, ne fi exploratum quidem habeat id * omnino neminem unquam fufpicaturum.- Hoc qui admiratur, is se, quis fit vir bonus, ti nefcire fatetur.” Idem, de offic. lib. III.

Kir el peso develop in Taurre Recubrensen Few's my drezúrns, ouu's & vlion civo, cã a'yx üvexa vice di daxudum aziş icloxiav asr hy xpibrin. "Plato de Republ. lib. X.


practice of the world, supposing all expectation of rewards and pa. nishments set aside, will not be, whether a man would choose virtue for its own sake, and avoid vice ; but the practice of vice is accompanied with great temptations and allurements of pleasure and profit ; and the practice of virtue is often threatened with great calamities, losses, and sometimes even with death itself. And this alters the question, and destroys the practice of that which appears lo reasonable in the whole speculation, and introduces a necessity of rewards and punishments. For though virtue is unquestionably worthy to be chosen for its own sake, even without any expectation of reward ; yet it does not follow that it is therefore entirely felfsufficient, and able to support a man under all kinds of sufferings, and even death itself, for its fake, without any prospect of future recompence. Here therefore began the error of the Stoicks; who taught that the bare practice of virtue was itself the chief good, and able of itself to make a man happy under all the calamities in the world. Their defence indeed of the cause of virtue was very brave: they saw well that its excellency was intrinsic, and founded in the nature of the things themselves, and could not be altered by any outward circunstances; that therefore virtue must needs be defirable for its own fake, and not merely for the advantage it might bring along with it; and, if so, then consequently neither could any external disadvantage, which it might happen to be attended with, change the intrinsic worth of the thing itself, or ever make it cease to be truly desirable. Wherefore, in the case of sufferings and death for the sake of virtue ; not having any certain knowledge of a future state of- reward (though the wiseft of them did indeed hope for it, and think it highly probable), they were forced, that they might be consistent with their own principles, to suppose the practice of virtue a sufficient reward to itself in all cases, and a full compensation for all the sufferings in the world. And accordingly they very bravely indeed taught, that the practice of virtue was not only infinitely to be preferred before all the finful pleasures in the world; but also + that a man ought without scruple to chufe, if the case was proposed to him, rather to undergo all possible sufferings with virtue, than to obtain all possible worldly happiness by fin; and the suitable practice of some few of them, as of Regulus för instance, who chose to die the cruellest death that could be invented, rather than break his faith with an enemy, is indeed very wonder.

* " Et autem unus dies benc & ex præceptis tuis actus, peccanti immortalitati anteponendus." Cic. Tusc. Quæf. lib. V.

* “Quæro fi duo fint, quorum alter optimus vir, æquiffimus, summa juftitia, fingulari " fide; alter infigni scelere & audacia : et fi in eo fit errore civitas, ut bonum illum virum, “ sceleratum, facinorosum, nefarium putet; contra autem qui fit improbissimus, exiftimet « effe fumma probitate ac fide : proque hac opinione omnium civium, bonus ille vir vexetur, « rapiatur, manus ei denique auferantur, effodiantur oculi, damnetur, vinciatur, uratur, ex« terminerur, egeat; poftremo, jure etiam optimo omnibus miserrimus effe videatur ; con“ tra autem illc improbus laudetur, colatur, ab omnibus diligatur, omnes ad eum honores, « omvia imperia, omnes opes, omnes denique copiæ conferantur, vir denique optimus om“ nium æftimatione, & diguiffimus omni fortuna judicetur : quis tandem erit tam demens, qu: dubitet utrum se esse malit?” Idem, de Republ. lib. III. fragment. .


ful and to be admired. But yet, after all this, it is plain that the general practice of virtue in the world can never be supported upon this foot. The discourse is admirable, but it seldom goes further than meer words : and the practice of those few, who have acted accordingly, has not been imitated by the rest of the world. Men never will generally, and indeed it is not very reasonably to be expected they should, part with all the comforts of life, and even life itself, without expectation of any future recompence.

So that, if we suppose no future state of rewards, it will follow, that God has endued men with such faculties as put them under a necessity of approving and chusing virtue in the judgement of their own minds; and yet has not given them wherewith to support themselves in the suitable and conftant practice of it. The confideration of which inexplicable difficulty ought to have led the philosophers to a firm belief and expectation of a future state of rewards and punishments, without which their whole scheme of morality cannot be supported. And, because a thing of such necessity and importance to mankind was not more clearly and directly and universally made known, it might naturally have led them to some farther consequences also, which I shall have occasion particularly to deduce hereafter. THE MANIFOLD ABSURDITIES OF MR. HOBBES'S DOCTRINES,


And now, from what has been said upon this head, it is easy to see the fallity and weakness of Mr. Hobbes's doctrines; that there is no such thing as just and unjust, right and wrong, originally in the nature of things; that men in their natural state, antecedent to all compacts, are not obliged to universal benevolence, nor to any moral duty whatsoever ; but are in a state of war, and have every one a right to do whatever he has power to do; and that, in civil focieties, it depends wholly upon positive laws, or the will of governors, to define what shall be just or unjuft. The contrary to all which having been already fully demonstrated, there is no need of being large in further disproving and confuting particularly thefe affertions themselves. I shall therefore only mention a few observations, from which fome of the greatest and most obvious absurdities of the chief principles upon which Mr. Hobbes builds his whole doctrine in this matter, may moft easily appear.

1. First then ; the ground and foundation of Mr. Hobbes's scheme is this ; that * all men, being equal by nature, and naturally defiring the same things, have + every one a right to every thing, are every one desirous to have absolute dominion over all others, and may every one justly do whatever at any time is in

*" Ab æqualitate natura oritur unicuique ea, quæ cupit, acquirendi spes.” Leviath. cap. 13.

+ Natura dedit unicuique jus in omnia. Hoc est; in ftatu merè naturali, five ante. quam homines ullis paétis fese invicem obftrinxiffent, vnicuique licebat facere quæcun

que & in quoscunque libebat; & poffidere, uti, frui omnibus, quæ volel at & joterat." De Cive, c. 1. § 10:

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