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ACTIVUM.” Sed primam potentiam omnes, certe Christiani, in Deum transferunt, eique acceptam ferunt. Facessant, qui aliter sentiunt.
. 2. Proinde nec observatur determinatio illa SCIENTIE MEDIE. Hinc enim idea rei prius in creatura esset, quam in Deo: cognitionis etiam Divina principium a' re finita procederet : ipsumque adeo Summum Bonum, Omnipotens, Infinitum, Purus Actus, dependenter a voluntatis creata consilio et providentia moveret. Quinetiam impossibile idem : Quippe scibile est ante scientiam, sicut to or ante to sepi. Præest autem, dum præcedit ipsius rival, roll, utapęs. At nihil est nec existit, quod a Dei voluntate non est nec existit. Și præscit igitur priusquam velit, præscit nihil. At si aliquid esset in homine, quod sine præeunte voluntate præsciret, quale est in fieri, præsciretur a causa dependens. Causa vero si non prædeterminetur a Deo, mere contingens est. Hinc incerta vicissim esset Divina cognitio. Quare prascientia non esset, quæ effecti est non contingentis sed necessarii judicium.
TRANSLATION. grace, he is generally active in giving his consent-shall I also call it bis assent sometimes ? But all true Christians transfer the primary power to God, and declare that it is received by him. . Let those persous be dismissed who entertain different sentiments.
THESIS XI. " Secondly. That determination therefore of MIDDLE KNOWLEDGE is not observed. For, from hence the idea of a thing would be in the creature before it was in God; the commencement of the Divine Knowledge would also proceed from a thing that is finite; and thus the Chief Good itself, which is an Omnipotent, Infinite, and Pure Act, would move in dependence upon the counsel and foresight of a created will. Besides, it is impossible ; because that which is capable of being known must be iu existence before the knowledge of it,-as entity itself must have precedence of its circumstances. But its being, essence, or existence, while it has the precedence, enjoys also the pre-eminence. But nothing is or exists, which has uot its being or existence from the will of God. If therefore he foreknows before he wills, he foreknows nothing. But if there was any thing in man, which he God] could foreknow without the aid of his will preceding, (such as any thing that is in a course of being made,) it would be foreknown as dependent on a cause. But if the cause be not predetermined by God, it is merely contingent : Hence, of course, the Divine Knowledge would be uncertain. Wherefore, it would not be foreknowledge, which is the judgment of an effect is NOT CONTINGENT but NECESSARY.”
ANNOTATIONES. Quamvis mihi nulla necessitas incumbat Scientiam Mediam astruendi, quædam tamen non obscura hujusmodi scientiæ rerum, ex suppositione circumstantiæ hujus aut illius eventurarum vel secus, vestigia in sacris literis apparent. Ut exemplar inittam de Davide in Keilah notissimum, (Sam. xxiii, 12,) de Chorazin etiam et Bethsaida ; (Matt. xi, 21; Luke x, 13 ;) consule, inter alia ejusdem numeri, dicta Salvatoris nostri ad sacerdotes et scribas sciscitantes, Num tu es ille Christus ? Dic nobis : dicentis, « Si vobis dixero, nequaquam credetis.” Et versu sequente, “ Quod si etiam interrogavero, nequaquam respondebitis mihi, neque absolvetis." (Luke xxii, 67, 68.) En tibi tres eventus non eventuros ex suppositione etiam ipsius Christi Domini nostri! Cætera mitto. Frustra ergo a te quæritur, vel potius supponitur, quid prius sit aut posterius ; frustra etiam, (quod non capis) “ impossibile" affirmas. Nec rationes a te productæ aliud quid probant, quam quod plurimis sacræ scripturæ affirmationibus sole clarioribus oculos obnubis, ut refrageris. Nec minus ideo præscientia Dei, eaque certa de effectis naturâ
ANNOTATIONS. Although no necessity is imposed upon me of establishing Middle Know ledge, yet in the sacred scriptures ce
ed scriptures certain not obscure vestiges are apparent of this kind of Knowledge, of things that will happen thus or other wise, on the supposition of the occurrence of this or that circumstance. Omitting the the well-known example of David in Keilah, (1 Sam. xxiii, 12,) + and of Chorazio and Bethsaida, (Matt, xi, 21; Luke x, 13,) consult, among other sayings of the same description, the answer of our Saviour to the Chief
Scribes who had asked. “ Art thou the Christ? Tell us." And he said unto them, “If I tell you, ye will not believe.” In the subsequent verse be adds, “ If I also ask you, ye will not answer me, nor let me go." (Luke xxii, 67, 68.) You have here three events specified, which yet will not occur even on the supposition of Christ our Lord himself. The rest of your remarks I pass by. In vain therefore is the question, or rather the supposition, which you raise about what is prior or what is posterior ; and useless is your affirmation respecting “ the impossibility [of middle knowledge]”, which you do not comprehend. Neither do the reasons produced by you tend to prove any thing more than this,-that you shut your eyes against several of the affirmations in the Holy Scriptures, which are clearer than the sun, for the purpose of contradicting them. The foreknowledge of God would be no less certain respecting effects which are in their own nature contingent, although it may appear uncertain to you who measure suâ contingentibus esset, quamvis tibi Scientiam Divinam ex tua finita et fallaci omnium mortalium metienti ita videatur. Quid nos scire ex suppositione possimus, vix ipsi cognoscimus: quid autem scire possit Deus, vix, ac ne vix; nisi quod Ove NISCIUM EUM ESSE, infallibiliter scire possumus, ac debemus.
+ This case is very remarkable: David had ordered Abiathar the priest to bring the ephod, and enquired of the Lord, “ Will the men of keilah deliver me up into the hands of Saul? Will Saul come down, as thy servant hath heard ! O Lord God of Israel, I beseech thee, tell thy servant." And the Lord said, “He will come down." -Then said David, “Will the men of Keilah deliver me and my men into the hand of Saul ?" And the Lord said, “ They will deliver thee up."- Then David and his men, which were about six hundred, arose and departed out of Keilah, and went whithersoever they could go. And it was told Saul, that David was escaped from Kcilah ; and he forbore to go forth.
Respecting Chorazin and Bethsaida, it is said: If the mighty works which were done in you had been done in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented loug ago in sackcloth and sherEDITOR.
THESIS XII. · Denique. Corruit simul ex conditione prævisa concursus intentio, quippe quæ tum independenti natura Dei repugnat, tum vocationis decretum non est, ut postea declarabimus.
ANNOTATIONES. Quia te postea declaraturum, ais, paucula ista, quæ de errore tertio dicenda habuisti, hîc istorum examine supersedebimus, te illic præstolaturi.
At at talia cogitanti mihi jam subolet, dum sequentia per. functorie lustro, quamobrem “hæ Theses totæ, scilicet gemmeæ, et hoc solo nomine redarguendæ,” (si præfatori credimus,) Latine etiamnum prostent, necdum vernaculum calleant: Nemo, opinor, apte et ad mortalium captum, Anglico redderet, aut redditas intelligeret. Lectorem haud facile invenissent, quæ jam a nonnemine, nescio quo, eruditionis laudem captante, immane quantum!, allaudantur. Quid ais, Clarissime Præfator, “ Istæne
TRANSLATION. the Divine KNOWLEDGE by your own, which is finite,-or by that of mortals, which is fallacious. We ourselves scarcely understand what it is possible for us to know on supposition. But to measure the extent of the possibility of God's knowledge, is beyond our power: The only thing conceruing it which we may and ought infallibly to know, is, that he is OMNISCIENT!
THESIS XII. “ Lastly. The intention of a concurrence from a foreseen condition is at the same time destroyed, both because it is repugnant to the independent nature of God, and because it is not the decree of vocation, as we shall hereafter declare."
ANNOTATIONS. Because you say, that “ you will hereafter declare the few things which you had to say about this third error," we will now cease from our examination of them, being willing to wait till you bave them ready.
But wbile I slightly cast my eyes over those which foilow, and was reflecting upon such tòpies, I begun to suspect the reason why these Theses are still sold in Latin, and why they have not yet been published in our native language; although, if we may credit the editor, “ the only fault with which they can be charged, is, that they are entirely studded with gems !" The reason of their vet remaining untranslated, is this,-no man could, in my opinion, render them into English so as to be grasped by the comprehension of mortals, or could himself understand thew when translated. A single reader would with dificulty be found engaged in the perusal of a production, that has been thus immoderately extolled by some one whom nobody kuows, and who plumes himself greatly on the praise to which he considers himself entitled for the extent of his erudition. What, most famous Prefacer, do you say, “ These Theses have been frequently pub
eædlem Theses cum Amesianis tractatulis, idque sæpius compingebantur?” Quam nollem credere virum istum tam gravem, tot, tantaque, tamdiu (a patriâ exulem an profugum) perpessum, ob solam sacrarum literarum (uti præ se tulit) confessionem et defensionem, has metaphysicas, aërias, a Sancti Spiritus stylo penitus abhorrentes, Theses cum suis ipsius operibus quicquam commercii habere permissurum. Verum sic usu venit, ut hujusmodi scripta se in celebris alicujus Doctoris clientelam recipiant, cujus ut splendore cohonestentur, est votorum summa.
Me quod attinet, potui hoc trihorium non sic perdere; nec libet cum juvenilibus his an anilibus larvis luctari, non tam quod difficiles esse nugas duxeriin, quam quod inutiles et viris gravi. bus indignas. Prætereo, qnod supervacaneum prorsus fuerit in superstructis “gemmis” diutius immorari, quarum “fundamenta supra-posita" corruisse jam vidimus. Hoc interim sancte spondeo, me totum in veritatis fideique obedientiam (Deo bene juvante) libentissime transiturum ; eumque me esse profiteor, qui, ex his Thesibus aut alicunde, veritatem secundum pietatem docenti, cumprimis herbam porrigam.
Restat, ut apud Deum Optimum Maximum supplicibus votis contendam, ut ne porro gliscat inter Christiani nominis profes. sores, de vocabulorum minutiis, qualis hodieque regnat con
TRANSLATION lished, and bound up with other tracts by AMEs of the same kind ?" How unwilling am I to believe, that a man of so much gravity [as Ames], wbo, either as an exile or a runagate from his native country, has long endured such a number and such a weight of troubles, solely (as he pretends) on account of his confession and defence of the sacred writings, bow can I believe, that such a man would allow these metaphysical and light Theses, which are utterly abhorrent to the style of the Holy Spirit, to have any connection with his productions! But this is now a common practice,- to place writings of this description under the patronage of some celebrated Doctor; and when his name reflects splendour upon them, the writers have attained) to the summit of their wishes.
With reference to myself, it was in my own power not to have lost these three hours (iu composing annotations] : For there is no pleasure in con. tending with these phantomst-shall I call them the productions of a boy or of an old woman?' I find such an occupation unpleasant, not because I consider trilles to possess any difficulty, but because they are useless and unworthy of serious men's attention. I pass them by, because it would be quite superfluous to remain any longer eugaged in contemplating] “ the gems” which are built up, when we have already seen “ the foundations supra-posited" (Thess. x,j fallen down (and bleuded in one common ruin). In the mean time, I enter into this sacred engagement, that I will inost cheerfully, bv God's gracious assistauce, devote myself ent rely to the obedience of the truth and faith; and I profess myself to be among the foremost of those who yield the pre-eminence to the inan that teaches us, out of these Theses or from any other source,' the truth which is according to godliness.'
It now remains for me bumbly and earnestly to beseech Almighty God, that the contests which in our days prevail concerning minute expressions, may spread no further among professors of the name of Christ. Keep
† App. N.
tentio. Tacete, O Parkere, Twissi, cæterique Metaphysico-verbi. potentes Logodædali, ut audiantur Jesus NOSTER in æternum benedictus, et a Sancto SPIRITU acti Prophetæ, Evangelistæ, et Apostoli. Ille ex ÆTERNI PATRIS sinu ab intima inibi secretorum intuitione prodiit. Hi ab Eo, quicquid apud Patrem viderat et audiverat didicerunt; cumque ecclesiâ, qua sermone qua scripto, communicarunt, “integrum Dei de nobis consilium secundum beneplacitum ;” (Act. xx, 27; Eph. i, 9;) oinne voluntatis suæ circa salutem humanam mysterium, etiam “secundum propositum." Hoc de uno S. Paulo, qui utrobique ad Ephesios verba facit, in sacris literis affirmatur. Quid attinet reliquos Spiritus Sancti amanuenses commemorare ?
Denique rationum momento artificialium, et testimonia hu. mana, si hîc adsint, non respuo; si absint, non desidero. De. cidi autem quæ de hominum salute et interitu lites incidunt, ex Sanctis præsertim Literis, nominatim Evangelio, et posse et debere, hoc est quod contendo. Vale, mi Parkere, et vivere malimus quam disputare; aut saltem sacris scripturis magis quam futilibus cerebri nostri argutiis rixisque mulieribus, amice colloquamur.
SOLI DEO GLORIA.
TRANSLATION. silence, Parker, Twisse, and the rest of the tribe of potent metaphysical verbalists and expert fabricators of learned phraseology! Let our Jesus be heard, who is blessed for evermore; and let the Prophets, Evangelists, and Apostles be heard, who were actuated and influenced by the Holy Spirit. Christ proceeded from the bosom of the Eternal Father, from the intimate inspection, iv that (favoured] place, of his secrets. His Prophets, Evangelists, and Apostles learni from him whatever He had seen and heard wbile with the Father ; and have, both by their discourses and writings, coinmunicated to the church the whole counsel of God concerning us * according to his gond pleasure' (Acts xx, 27 ; Epbes, i, 9: all the mystery of
the mystery of his will respecting human salvation, even according to his own purpose. This is atlirmed in the sacred writings concerning St. Paul alone, who, in both the passages which we have quoted, addresses himself to the Ephesians. To what purpose is it to recount the rest of the Holy Spirit's amanuenses?
LASTLY. If the powerful motives of artificial reasons, and if human lestimonies, be here presented, I do not refuse them; if they are absent, I do not desire them. But for this one thing I contend, -that these controversies, which arise about the salvation of men and their destruction, boib may and ought io he decided by the sacred writings, and particularly by the Gospels.
Farewell, my Parker, and let it be our choice to live swell], rather than dispute : Or at least let us hold friendly colloquies together out of the Holy Scriptures, rather than indulge in foolish and subtle devices or in feminine squabbles.
Written in much haste.
To GUD ALONE BE ALL THE GLORY!
END OF BISHOP WOMACK'S ANNOTATIONS.