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be inculcated and believed in all the churches which they founded-in Switzerland, in Holland, in England, in Scotland, and in the north of Ireland, and in some of the states of North America. Where are communities to be found of a more "pure and active virtue? Perhaps we might with truth affirm, that in proportion as this doctrine, and the doctrines of grace connected with it, have been rejected in these communities, have they declined from the virtue of their forefathers.
In the mean time, let us derive from this doctrine the motives to holy exertion, as well as to resignation, which it is so well calculated to present. Let us rejoice, in knowing, that all things that can befal us, are directed and appointed by the counsel of our heavenly Father. Let us view his hand in all our temporal mercies, whether they proceed immediately from himself, or through the medium of our fellow-creatures. Let us also view his hand in our afflictions, whether they be personal or domestic, whether they be laid on us immediately by his providence, or be occasioned by the malice and unreasonableness of our fellowcreatures. They all come within the counsel of our heavenly Father, are all necessary for correction and reproof, and are made the means of promoting our growth in grace, and meetness for everlasting blessedness. When this glorious end is attained, the ways of Providence that are now unfathomable, and those dispensations which are dark and mysterious, shall be made plain. And with angels and the whole multitude of the redeemed, we shall give our approval to all the ways of God. With them we shall sing the
song of Moses and of the Lamb, saying, “ Great and marvellous are thy works, Lord God Almighty ; just and true are thy ways, thou King of saints. Who shall not fear thee, and glorify thy name? for thou only art holy: for all nations shall come and worship before thee ; for thy judgments are made manifest.”
NOTES TO THE FIRST VOLUME.
Note A, --The Being and Perfections of God. p. 78.
The argument à priori, as it is usually called, is developed with great power in the reasonings of Newton and Clarke, founded on our conceptions of space and time. An argument for the existence of God akin to this, is founded on the idea we are capable of forming of a perfect, self-existent, and eternal Being. This is generally ascribed to Des Cartes; but it is to be found in the writings of Anselm, Archbishop of Canterbury, who flourished so early as the eleventh century. It is contained in his discourse, entitled Monologia, concerning the existence of God, the Divine attributes, and the Trinity.
“This great prelate,” says Mosheim, “who shone with a distinguished lustre in several branches of literature both sacred and profane, was the first of the Latin doctors who dispelled the clouds of ignorance and obscurity, that hung over the important sciences of metaphysics and natural theology, as appears from two books of his composition, wherein the truths concerning the Deity, which are deducible from the mere light of nature, are enumerated and explained with a degree of sagacity which could not well be expected from a writer of this century. He was the inventor of that famous argument, vulgarly and erroneously attributed to Des Cartes, which demonstrates the existence of God from the idea of an infinitely perfect Being naturally implanted in the mind of man, and which is to be found without exception in the breast of every mortal.”—(Ecclesiastical History, v. ii. p. 466.)
Though Anselm was the inventor, to use Mosheim's expression, of this argument, it does not appear that Des Cartes derived it from him. It is probable that he was
led to it by the plan which he proposed to himself for investigating truth. “ He began,” as D'Alembert has remarked, “with doubting everything, and ended in believing that he had left nothing unexplained.” He was satisfied of the existence of his own mind, because, “ to suppose the non-existence of that which thinks, at the very moment it is conscious of thinking, appeared to him a contradiction in terms. From this single postulatum, accordingly, he took his departure; resolved to admit nothing as a philosophical truth, which could not be deduced from it by a chain of logical reasoning.--Having first satisfied himself of his own existence, his next step was to inquire, how far his perceptive and intellectual faculties were entitled to credit. For this purpose he begins with offering a proof of the existence and attributes of God ;-truths which he conceived to be necessarily involved in the idea he was able to form of a perfect, self-existent, and eternal Being.-His reasonings led him to conclude, that God cannot possibly be supposed to deceive his creatures ; and therefore that the intimations of our senses and the decisions of our reason, are to be trusted to with entire confidence, wherever they afford us clear and distinct ideas of their respective objects.
6. The substance of Des Cartes' argument on these fundamental points, is thus briefly recapitulated by himself in the conclusion of his third meditation. Dum in meipsum mentis aciem converto, non modo intelligo me esse rem incompletam, et ab alio dependentem, remque ad majora et meliora indefinite aspirantem, sed simul etiam intelligo illum, à quo pendeo, majora ista omnia non indefinite et potentia tantum, sed reipsa infinite in se habere, atque ita Deum esse ; totaque vis argumenti in eo est, quod agnoscam fieri non posse ut existem talis naturæ qualis sum, nempe ideam Dei in me habens, nisi revera Deus etiam existeret, Deus, inquam, ille idem cujus idea in me est, hoc est habens omnes illas perfectiones quas ego non comprehendere sed quocunque modo attingere cogitatione
possum, et nullis planè defectibus obnoxius. Ex his satis patet, illum fallacem esse non posse : omnem enim fraudem et deceptionemà defectu aliquo pendere lumine naturali manifestum est.'
“ The above argument for the existence of God (very improperly called, by some foreigners, an argument à priori) was long considered by the most eminent men in Europe as quite demonstrative. For my own part although I do not think that it is by any means so level to the apprehension of common inquirers, as the argument from the marks of design everywhere manifested in the universe, I am still less inclined to reject it as altogether unworthy of attention. It is far from being so metaphysically abstruse as the reasonings of Newton and Clarke, founded on our conceptions of space and time; nor would it appear, perhaps, less logical and conclusive than that celebrated demonstration, if it were properly unfolded, and stated in more simple and popular terms. The two arguments, however, are, in no respect, exclusive of each other; and I have always thought, that, by combining them together, a proof of the point in question might be formed, more impressive and luminous than is to be obtained from either when stated apart.”—(Disser. First: On the Progress of Metaphysical, Ethical, and Political Phi, losophy ; by Dugald Stewart, Esq. p. 90, 91.)
Æternus est et infinitus, omnipotens et omnisciens; id est, durat ab æterno in æternum, et adest ab infinito in infinitum.Non est æternitas et infinitas, sed æternus et infinitus ; non est duratio et spatium, sed durat et adest. Durat semper et adest ubique, et existendo semper et ubique durationem et spatium constituit. (Scholiun. annexed to Newton's Principia.)
The fundamental principle of Clarke's Demonstration is, that as immensity and eternity are not substances but attributes, which are irresistibly forced on our belief as necessary existences, “the immense and eternal Being whose attributes they are, inust exist of necessity also. The ex,