Imatges de pÓgina

tradictory they are reconcileable, and one perfect sense may be derived from them; for neither does our free-will without the instruction of God, nor does the instruction of God, compel us to make a proficiency, unless we ourselves contribute something to the good: neither our free-will without the instruction of God, and the exercise of this privilege of free-will, causing any one to be to honour or dishonour; nor the will of God alone making any one to honour or dishonour, unless he has some ground of difference, (namely), our will inclining towards what is good, or what is bad."-Vol. 1. p. 137.

"But it rests with ourselves whether we make a vigorous exertion of the power given us, or not; for it is certain that in every temptation we have the power of enduring, provided we make a competent use of the power granted to us. For it is not the same thing to have the power of conquering and to conquer, as the Apostle himself has pointed out in this very guarded expression; God will make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it (x),' not that ye may bear it. For For many do not bear it, but are overcome by the temptation. God grants not that we may bear it, for then, it seems, there would be no struggle; but that we may be able to bear it,

(*) 1 Cor. c. 10. V. 13.


But we make use of that power which is given us, to enable us to conquer, according to our free-will, either with energy, and then we conquer; or sluggishly, and then we are overcome. For if it were entirely given to us in every case to conquer, and by no means to be overcome, what cause of contest would remain to him who could not be overcome? or what would be the merit of victory, where there is not the power of resisting and conquering? But if the possibility of conquering be equally afforded to us all, but it remains in our own power how we use this possibility, whether with energy or sluggishly, the conquered will be justly blamed, and the conqueror justly rewarded."-Vol. 1. p. 140.

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Nothing else is to be considered as happening to us from the good or evil suggested to our hearts, but a mere motion or incitement to good or evil. But it is possible for us, when an evil power shall begin to incite us to evil, to reject from us evil suggestions, and to resist wicked persuasions, and to do nothing deserving of blame. And, again, it is possible for us when a divine power incites us to what is good, not to obey; freedom of will being preserved to us in either case."-Vol. 1. p. 140.

"I think that the motion of rational beings is self-motion. But if we take from an animal


self-motion, it can be no longer considered as an animal; but it will either be like to a plant, which is moved by nature alone; or to a stone, which is impelled by some external force. But if any creature follows its own motion, as we should call that self-motion, it must necessarily partake of reason. Those therefore who contend, that nothing is in our own power, will necessarily admit the greatest absurdities; first, that we are not animals; secondly, that we are not rational, but being, as it were, moved by an external force, and not moving ourselves, we may be said to do by that external force what we are thought to do ourselves. Besides, let any one, attending to what passes within himself, consider whether he can without shamelessness say, that he does not himself will, and that he does not himself eat, and that he does not himself walk, and that he does not himself consent, and that he does not admit some opinions and reject others as false. As therefore there are certain propositions, to which a man cannot give his consent, however numerous may be the attempts, or however plausible may be the reasonings used, so it is impossible for any one to admit that nothing relating to the affairs of men is left in our own power. For who supposes that nothing can be comprehended; or who lives as if he doubted of


every thing? Who does not blame a servant, when he perceives him committing a fault? And who does not accuse a son that pays not a proper duty to his parents? And who does not complain of an adulterous woman, and consider her conduct as disgraceful? For truth compels and forces us, whatever cavils may be used, to be ready both to commend and to blame, our actions being left in our own power, and being therefore fit objects of praise or dispraise. If therefore innumerable motives to virtue and vice, and to what is becoming and unbecoming, be preserved to us, the result must necessarily be known to God with other things before they happen, from the creation and foundation of the world; and every thing which God pre-ordained in consequence of what he saw would be in our power, he must have pre-ordained, consistently with the exercise of our free-will in every instance, both what would take place according to his providence, and what would happen from the future relation of things; the prescience of God not being the cause of events which were future, and which depended upon our own free-will. For if we were to suppose that God did not foreknow what would happen, we should not the less do some things and will others."-Vol. 1. p. 206.

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"I am of opinion that God so dispenses (oixovou) every one of the rational souls, that he regards their everlasting existence; for they always have free-will; and of their own accord, either by continuing in what is right they rise to the summit of virtue, or through negligence sink, by various methods, to this or that degree of wickedness."-Vol. 1. p. 261.

"It was necessary, says Celsus, to call all men, since indeed all men are guilty of sin." Origen answers, "And in what is gone before we have shewn that Jesus said, 'Come unto me all ye that labour, and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest (a).' Therefore all men labouring, and heavy laden, on account of the nature of sin, are called to rest by the word of God." Vol. 1. p. 489.

"Celsus, arguing according to his own principles, asserts, that it is very difficult to make a perfect change in nature: but we (knowing that there is one and the same nature in every rational soul, and maintaining, that not a single one is formed wicked by the Creator of all things, but that many men become wicked by education, by example, and by influence, so that wickedness is as it were naturalized in some) are persuaded that it is not only not impossible, but not very difficult,

(a) Matt. c. II. v. 28.

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