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subsequent to that event; but their scheme of Election and Reprobation is otherwise precisely the same as that of the Supralapsarians.
8. What is the opposite doctrine of the Arminians ?
The Arminian system is directly opposed to that of the Calvinists on the subject of Predestination. It maintains that the divine decrees were framed in consequence of God's foreknowledge of the use which Adam and his posterity would make of their natural free-agency; that redemption through Christ is offered indifferently to all men; and that each individual of the human race is free to accept or reject the means of grace, which are necessary to work out his salvation.
9. Who was the founder of this system; by what other title are his followers known; and why were they so designated ?
James Armunsen, a native of Holland, strenuously advocated these principles in the University of Leyden, at the commencement of the 17th century: and his name. Latinised into Arminius, was applied to his system. His followers were denounced at the Synod of Dort, in 1618, and severe penalties attached to their rejection of the Calvinistic doctrines. Against this sentence they presented a petition to the States general; and from that circumstance they are sometimes distinguished by the title of Remonstrants.
10. Does the Church of England side with Calvin or Arminius ; and how has she expressed herself in the Article on Predestination ?
In her views of the confessedly difficult subject of Predestination, the Church of England is neither Calvinistic nor Arminian, but essentially Scriptural. The doctrine itself she simply states in Scriptural language; points out the danger of its abuse; and adds a caution respecting the interpretation of the divine promises generally. 'She makes no mention of Reprobation whatsoever, inasmuch as, in the Scriptures, the term is altogether unconnected with Election. As to the controversy of Arminius, it was in fact subsequent to the compilation of our Articles; and the promulgation of the Lambeth Articles, in order to force Calvinism upon our Church, affords a most striking proof that she is not Calvinistic.
11. What do you mean by the Lambeth Articles ?
See above, p. 3. qu. 5.
They were nine in number, and in substance as follows : -1. God has from eternity predestinated certain persons to life, and reprobated certain persons to death. 2. The efficient cause of Predestination is not the foresight of faith or good works in those predestinated; but only the will of God's good pleasure. 3. The predestinated are a predetermined and certain number, which can neither be diminished nor increased. 4. Those who are not predestinated will inevitably be condemned on account of their sins. 5. The elect do not fall from grace either finally or totally. 6. A true believer is certified by the full assurance of faith that his sins are forgiven, and his salvation irresistible. 7. Saving grace is not granted to all men, so that they may be saved if they will. 8. No man is able to come to Christ, unless the Father draw him; and all men are not drawn by the Father. 9. Every man has not the will or power to be saved.
13. Shew that the definition of Predestination, in the 17th Article, is closely Scriptural.
It is concisely stated in this Article, in conformity with the express declaration of St. Paul (Rom. viii. 29. Eph. i. 4, 5. 2 Tim. i. 9.), that God, before the foundation of the world, had predestinated the redemption of mankind by Jesus Christ; to which end he called them with a holy calling, purposing, according to the good pleasure of his will, to save those, whom he did foreknow as vessels made to honour, and, by ready obedience to his invitation, fit to receive the adoption of children, and become inheritors of the kingdom of heaven.
14. By what marks are the predestinated said to be distinguished ?
Those who are endued with so excellent a benefit of God, or, in other words, those who embrace the conditions of the Gospel covenant, pass regularly through the gradations of that scheme of redemption, which the inscrutable wisdom of God has pre-ordained. They are called according to his
purpose by his spirit working in due season; they through 'grace obey the calling; they be justified freely; they are 'made the sons of God by adoption; they are made like the 'image of Christ; they walk religiously in good works; and
at length by God's mercy attain to everlasting felicity.' See Matt. xxv. 34. Rom. iii. 24. viii. 29, 30. ix. 23. Gal. iv. 6,7. Eph. i. 11. ii. 10. 1 Pet. i. 2. sqq.
15. Is then Predestination to life an arbitrary act, irrespective of human conduct; or a divine purpose dependant on certain conditions ?
From the above declarations of Scripture, duly considered in connexion with each other, it appears that Predestination to life is not the arbitrary election of a privileged few to everlasting happiness; but the predeterminate counsel of God, of his free grace and mercy, to offer salvation to all men, Gentiles as well as Jews, through faith in his Son. This offer every one is capable of accepting or rejecting ; so that all who perish, perish by their own fault. God's decree is both general and conditional. It does not relate exclusively to this or that individual, but universally to all mankind ; and so far as it relates to a future life, it is not absolute without regard to the conduct of men, but dependent upon their faith and obedience.
16. Upon what is the notion of personal election based ; and what is the true Scriptural doctrine ?
The doctrine of Individual Election rests upon the application of certain texts to particular persons, which belong, in their original intention, to collective bodies of Christians, and to the Church at large. Thus St. Peter is writing to all the Christians in Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia; and St. Paul to the churches of Romé and Colosse in their corporate capacity. Neither as individuals nor as a body did any of the party, so addressed, merit the vocation by which they were called ; the invitation was an act of free mercy and grace; and the final election of each or all would depend on their being clothed
in the wedding garment of Faith and Love; and the promised rewards were to be apportioned to all according to their works.
17. Who then are the Elect?
The Elect are the whole body of Christians generally, who have been called to the knowledge of Christ by the Gospel. Who among these will make their calling and election sure,' it is not for man to judge; though God, who
he hearts, has a clear foreknowledge of those who will walk worthily of their vocation.
18. Who are the Reprobate ; and what is the proper import of the original word ?
The Reprobate, in the true Scriptural sense, are those who, after due trial, are found to be unworthy of the privi. leges and promises of the Gospel, and therefore rejected. In the original sense, the words δοκιμάζειν and αδόκιμος are applied to the assaying of metals ; from which the dross is separated, as being unable to endure the refiner's test.
19. Is not St. Paul called a chosen vessel; and consequently an instance of personal election?
Though St. Paul was a chosen vessel, selected by Christ as a fitting minister to preach the Gospel to the Gentiles ; it does not follow that he was personally elected to everlasting salvation. This depended on his 'fighting a good fight, and
keeping the faith' (2 Tim. iv. 7.); and consequently he laboured earnestly lest, when he had preached to others, "he himself should be a castaway' (1 Cor. ix. 27.).
20. What are the advantages possessed by this view of the doctrines of Predestination and Election over the Calvinistic interpretation ?
This interpretation has at least the advantage of making Scripture consistent with itself. Its invitations, so understood, are merciful and intelligible; its promises are engaging; its threatenings are alarming ; and its exhortations are powerful; whereas the contrary doctrine of an arbitrary predetermination of man's eternal destiny, without regard to his actions, is subversive of the first principles of reason, as
well as contradictory both to the letter and spirit of the New Testament. Christ, in this case, must have invited many to believe and obey him, whom he knew to be incapable of so doing; the glorious promises of the Gospel are but idle tales, the eloquence of St. Paul an empty sound, and the entire system of Christianity a visionary proposal, by which a man's future prospects could be influenced neither for the better nor the worse.
21. Does not this interpretation, however, militate against the foreknowledge of God ?
The foreknowledge of God is no argument against this interpretation. It may be difficult, and even impossible to comprehend, how the divine prescience consists with the free-agency of man, so as to make those contingencies, which depend upon the human will, clearly ascertained to the mind of the Deity : but, at the same time, this prescience would be as valid against the freedom of his own actions, as those of man. “Known unto God are all his works from the be'ginning of the world' (Acts xv. 18.); and yet his freeagency will scarcely be disputed. By parity of reasoning, therefore, his knowledge of the use which men will make of his offers of grace and mercy, no more implies a necessary control upon their wills, than the knowledge of his own actions excludes a want of liberty in the performance of them.
22. To whom is the Scriptural view of the doctrine full of comfort; and why?
"To godly persons,' who 'walk religiously in good works, in the hope of 'attaining, by God's mercy, to everlasting
felicity,' the doctrine of predestination and Election in Christ, understood in accordance with the scheme of unimersal redemption as set forth in the Scriptures and maintained in the Liturgy of our Church, is necessarily full of unspeakable comfort. As partakers of the atonement, they rejoice in God through Christ' (Rom. v. 11.); they'mortify the deeds of the body through the power of the Spirit that worketh in them' (Rom. viii. 13. Eph. iii. 20.); 'hav
their conversation in heaven, they set their affections 'on things above' (Phil. iii. 20. Col. iii. 2.); and their faith is established in the persuasion that neither death nor life, 'nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor height, nor depth, nor any