ternal principle of operation, that is their own nature, are yet all, in respect of his decree, and by his powerful working, determined to this or that effect in particular: not that they are compelled to do this, or hindered from doing that; but are inclined and disposed to do this or that, according to their proper manner of working, that is, most freely; for truly such testimonies are every where obvious in Scripture, of the stirring up of men's wills and minds, of bending and inclining them to divers things; of the governing of the secret thoughts and motions of the heart; as cannot by any means be referred to a naked permission, with a government of external actions, or to a general influence, whereby they should have power to do this or that, or any thing else, wherein as some suppose his whole providence consisteth.

Let us now jointly apply these several acts to free agents, working according to choice, or relation, such as are the wills of men; and that will open the way to take a view of Arminian heterodoxies, concerning this article of Christian belief; and here two things must be premised: First, That they be not deprived of their own radical, or original internal liberty; Secondly, That they be not exempt from the moving influence and gubernation of God's providence. The first whereof would leave no just room for rewards and punishments; the other, as I said before, is injurious to the majesty and power of God, St. Augustine judged Cicero worthy of special blame, even among the heathens, for so attempting to make men free, that he made them sacrilegious; by denying them to be subject to an overruling providence; which gross error was directly maintained by Damascen, a learned Christian, teaching, things whereof we have any power not to depend on providence, but on our own free-will; an opinion fitter for a hog of the epicures' herd, than for a scholar in the school of Christ; and yet, this proud prodigious error is now, though in other terms, stiffly maintained. For what do they else, who ascribe such an absolute independent liberty to the will of man, that it should have in its own power every circumstance, every condition whatsoever that belongs to operation; so that all things required on the part of God, or otherwise to

Qui sic homines voluit esse liberos ut fecit sacrilegos. Aug.

n τὰ ἐφ ̓ ὑμῖν οὐ τῆς προνοίας ἀλλά τοῦ ἡμετέρου αυτεξουσίου. Damascen.

the performance of an action being accomplished, it remaineth solely in the power of a man's own will, whether he will do it or no; which supreme and plainly divine liberty, joined with such an absolute uncontrollable power and dominion over all his actions, would exempt and free the will of man, not only from all fore-determining to the production of such and such effects, but also from any effectual working or influence of the providence of God into the will itself, that should sustain, help, or co-operate with it, in doing or willing any thing; and, therefore, the authors of this imaginary liberty, have wisely framed an imaginary concurrence of God's providence answerable unto it; viz. a general and indifferent influence, always waiting and expecting the will of man to determine itself to this or that effect, good or bad; God being, as it were, always ready at hand to do that small part which he hath in our actions, whensoever we please to use him; or; if we please to let him alone, he no way moveth us to the performance of any thing. Now God forbid that we should give our consent to the choice of such a captain, under whose conduct we might go down again unto Paganism; to the erecting of such an idol into the throne of the Almighty. No, doubtless, let us be more indulgent to our wills, and assign them all the liberty that is competent unto a created nature, to do all things freely according to election and foregoing counsel, being free from all natural necessity, and outward compulsion: but for all this, let us not presume to deny God's effectual assistance, his particular powerful influence into the wills and actions of his creatures, directing of them to a voluntary performance of what he hath determined; which the Arminians opposing in the behalf of their darling freewill, do work in the hearts of men an overweening of their own power, and an absolute independence of the providence of God. For,

First, They deny that God (in whom we live and move and have our being), doth any thing by his providence, whereby the creature should be stirred up, or helped in any of his actions; that is, God wholly leaves a man in the hand of his own counsel, to the disposal of his own absolute independent

i Deus influxu suo nihil confert creaturæ, quo ad agendum incitetur ac adjuvetur. Cor. ad Molin. cap. 3. sect 15. p. 35.

power, without any respect to his providence at all: whence, as they do, they may well conclude, that those things which God would have to be done of us freely (such as are all human actions), he cannot himself will or work more powerful and effectually, than by the way of wishing or desiring, as Vorstius speaks; which is no more than one man can do concerning another, perhaps far less than an angel. I can wish or desire that another man would do, what I have a mind he should; but truly to describe the providence of God by such expressions, seems to me intolerable blasphemy; but thus it must be; without such helps as these, Dagon cannot keep on his head, nor the idol of uncontrollable free-will enjoy his dominion.

Hence Corvinus will grant,' that the killing of a man by the slipping of an axe's head from the helve, although contingent, may be said to happen according to God's counsel and determinate will; but on no terms will he yield that this may be applied to actions wherein the counsel and freedom of man's will do take place, as though that they also should have dependence on any such overruling power: whereby he absolutely excludeth the providence of God from having any sovereignty within the territory of human actions; which is plainly to shake off the yoke of his dominion, and to make men lords paramount within themselves; so that they may well ascribe unto God, as they do," only a deceivable expectation of those contingent things that are yet for to come, there being no act of his own in the producing of such effects on which he can ground any certainty; only he may take a conjecture, according to his guess, at men's inclinations. And, indeed, this is the Helen for whose enjoyment, these thrice ten years, they have maintained warfare with the hosts of the living God; their whole endeavour being to prove, that notwithstanding the performance of all things

* Quæ Deus libere prorsus et contingenter, a nobis fieri vult ea potentius aut efficacius quam per modum voti aut desiderii, velle non potest. Vorst. parasc. p. 4.

Deinde etsi in isto casu destinatum aliquod consilium ac voluntas Dei determinata consideranda esset, tamen in omnibus actionibus et in iis quidem quæ ex deliberato hominum consilio et libera voluntate et male quidem fiunt, ita se rem habere inde concludi non possit, puta, quia hic nullum consilium et arbitrii libertas locum - habent. Cor. ad Molin, cap. 3. s. 14. p. 33.

Respectu contingentiæ quam res habent in se, tum in divina scientia Deo expectatio tribuitur. Rem. defen. sent. in act. syn. p. 107.

on the part of God required for the production of any action," yet the will of man remains absolutely free; yea, in respect of the event, as well as its manner of operation, to do it, or not to do it: that is, notwithstanding God's decree that such an action shall be performed, and his foreknowledge that it will so come to pass, notwithstanding his co-operating with the will of man (as far as they will allow him), for the doing of it, and though he hath determined by that act of man to execute some of his own judgments; yet there is no kind of necessity, but that he may as well omit, as do it: which is all one, as if they should say, Our tongues are our own, we ought to speak, who is Lord over us? We will vindicate ourselves into a liberty of doing what, and how we will, though for it we cast God out of his throne; and indeed, if we mark it, we shall find them undermining and pulling down the actual providence of God, at the root and several branches thereof. For,

First, For his conservation or sustaining of all things, they affirm it to be very likely that this is nothing but a negative act of his will, whereby he willeth or determineth not to destroy the things by him created; and when we produce places of Scripture which affirm that it is an act of his power, they say, they are foolishly cited. So that truly, let the Scripture say what it will (in their conceit), God doth no more sustain and uphold all his creatures, than I do a house when I do not set it on fire, or a worm when I do not tread upon it.

Secondly, For God's concurring with inferior causes in all their acts and working, they affirm it to be only a general influence, alike upon all and every one, which they may use or not use at their pleasure; and in the use determine

n Potentia voluntatis, ab omni interna et externa necessitate immunis debet manere. Rem. confess. cap. 6. sect. 3.-Vid. plura. Rem. apol. cap. 6. p. 69. a. • In arbitrio creaturæ semper est vel influere in actum vel influxum suum suspendere, et vel sic, vel aliter influere. Corvin. ad Molin. cap. 3. sect. 15.

P An conservatio ista sit vis sive actus potentiæ an actus merus voluntatis negati vus, quo vult res creatas non destruere aut annihilare,- posterius non sine magna veri specie affirmatur: locus ad Heb. i. 3. inepte adducitur. Rem. apol. cap. 6. sect. 1. p. 68. a.

4 Curandum diligenter, ut Deo quidem universalis, homini vero particularis influxus in actus tribuatur, quo universalem Dei influxum, ad particularem actum determinet. Cor. ad Mol. cap. 3. sect. 5.

it to this or that effect, be it good or bad (so Corvinus), as it seems best unto them; in a word, to the will of man' it is nothing but what suffers it to play its own part freely, according to its inclination, as they jointly speak in their confession. Observe also, that they account this influence of his providence, not to be into the agent, the will of man, whereby that should be helped or enabled to do any thing (no, that would seem to grant a self-sufficiency), but only into the act itself for its production, as if I should help a man to lift a log it becomes perhaps unto him so much the lighter, but he is not made one jot the stronger, which takes off the proper work of providence, consisting in an internal assistance.

Thirdly, For God's determining or circumscribing the will of man to do this or that in particular, they absolutely explode it as a thing destructive to their adored liberty. It is no way consistent with it, say they, in their apology: so also Arminius," The providence of God doth not determine the will of man to one part of the contradiction:' that is, God hath not determined that you shall, nor doth by any means overrule your wills, to do this thing rather than that, to do this or to omit that; so that the sum of their endeavour is to prove that the will of man is so absolutely free, independent, and uncontrollable, that God doth not, nay, with all his power, cannot, determine it certainly and infallibly to the performance of this or that particular action, thereby to accomplish his own purposes, to attain his own ends. Truly it seems to me the most unfortunate attempt that ever Christians lighted on, which if it should get success answerable to the greatness of the undertaking, the providence of God, in men's esteem, would be almost thrust quite out of the world; tanta molis erat: the new goddess contingency could not be erected until the God of heaven was utterly despoiled of his dominion over the sons of men, and in the room thereof a home-bred idol of self-sufficiency set up, and the world

r Ita concurrit Deus in agendo, cum hominis voluntate, ut istam pro genio suo agere et libere suas partes obire finat. Rem. confes. cap. 6. sect. 3.

• Influxus divinus est in ipsum actum non in voluntatem. Armin. Antip. alii passim.

t Determinatio cum libertate vera nullo modo consistere potest. Rem. apol. cap. 7. fol. 82.

" Providentia divina non determinat voluntatem liberam ad unam contradictionis vel contrarietatis partem. Armin. Artic. perpen.

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