Imatges de pÓgina

evil; and this is his death. God therefore affording this power of the mind, men know both the good of obedience, and the evil of disobedience; that the eye of the mind, receiving experience of both, may with judgement make choice of the better things, and never become indolent or negligent of God's command; and learning by experience that that which takes away life from him, that is, disobedience to God, is evil, may never attempt it; but knowing that that which preserves life, namely, obedience to God, is good, he may diligently keep it with all earnestness...

If you shall not believe in him, the cause of imperfection will be in you, who did not obey, but not in him who called. For he sent to call to the marriage; but they who did not obey, deprived themselves of the royal supper. The power of God (ars Dei) therefore, is not wanting; for he is able of stones to raise up children to Abraham; but he who does not obtain it, is the cause of his own imperfection. Nor does the light fail, because men blind themselves; but, that remaining as it is, those who are blinded are in darkness from their own fault, the light not enslaving any one by necessity; nor God forcing, if any one should not be willing to avail himself of his (God's) power (continere ejus artem.) Those, therefore, who desert the light given by


the Father, and trangress the law of liberty, have deserted it from their own fault, having been made free, and endowed with free-will. But God, foreknowing all things, has prepared fit habitations for both; to those who seek the light of incorruption, and run to it, kindly giving that light which they desire; but for others, who despise it, and turn away from it and avoid it, and as it were blind themselves, he has prepared darkness suitable to persons who dislike light; and upon those who will not be subject to it, he has inflicted appropriate punishment.. Since all good things are with God, they who by their own determination fly from God, defraud themselves of all good things, but being defrauded of all good things towards God, they will consequently incur the just judgement of God. They who fly from the eternal light of God, which contains in it all good things, are themselves the cause of their inhabiting eternal darkness, destitute of all good things, becoming to themselves the cause of this habitation."-p. 285.

[ocr errors]

"Isaiah, preaching in Judea, and disputing with Israel, called them rulers of Sodom, and people of Gomorrah (y); intimating that they were like the inhabitants of Sodom in transgression, and that they were guilty of the same

(y) Isaiah, c. I. V, 10.


sins, calling them by the same name, because their conduct was similar. And because they were not naturally made so by God, but were able to act justly, he said, giving them good counsel, Wash ye, make you clean, put away the evil of your doings from before mine eyes, cease to do evil (z). Because they had transgressed and sinned, they received the same reproof as the inhabitants of Sodom. For when they were converted, and repented, and rested from wickedness, they were able to be the sons of God, and to obtain the inheritance of incorruption, which is afforded by him,"-p. 288.


Being predestinated according to the prescience of the Father."-p. 292.

"As by the former generation (Adam) we inherited death, so by this generation (Christ) we inherit life.... That as we all died in the animal, so we may all be made alive in the spiritual."p. 293.

(Christ) saving in himself that in the end, which in the beginning had perished in Adam."

p. 310.


Potter's Edition.

"WE are consecrated to God for the sake of Christ, we are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood,

(z) Is. c. I. v. 16,

hood, an holy nation (a)." In this passage, Clement of Alexandria, in the words of St. Peter, speaks of the whole body of Christians, as chosen, or elect.

"If eternal salvation were to be bought, how much, O man, would you profess to give for it? If any one were to measure out all Pactolus, the fabled river of gold, he would not pay an equivalent price. Do not, then, despair. It is in your power, if you will, to purchase this precious salvation, with your own treasure, charity and faith, which is the just price of life. This price God willingly accepts.”—p. 71.

To whom will the Lord say, ' Your's is the kingdom of heaven (b)?' It is your's, if ye be willing, who have the power of choosing the things which belong to God: it is your's, if ye be willing only to obey those brief instructions which have been preached to you."-p. 79.


He twice speaks of "regenerating with water; evidently meaning baptism-pp. 156. 551.And he even applies the word regenerated to our Saviour's baptism.-p. 113.

"Hs says to Moses, 'Go and tell Pharaoh to send out the people, but I am sure that he will not send them out (c): In this he clearly


(a) 1 Pet. c. 2. v. 9. (b) Matt. c. 5. v. 3, & 10. (c) Exod. c. 3. v. 18, 19.

points out both his divinity, in foreknowing what would happen; and his goodness, in graciously giving the freedom of Pharaoh's mind opportunities to repent."-p. 143. This passage shews that Clement of Alexandria considered the prescience of God and the free-will of man, as not incompatible.


"God is free from all blame with respect to the person who has not chosen what is best."P. 318.

"Abraham was justified not by works, but by faith; therefore it will be of no service to them after this life, even if they now do good works, unless they have faith."-p. 338.

"Neither praise, nor dispraise, nor honours, nor punishments, would be just, if the soul had not the power of desiring and rejecting, and if vice were involuntary."―p. 368.

"But we preach Christ crucified, unto the Jews indeed a stumbling-block; because, knowing the prophecy, they do not believe the event; but unto the Greeks foolishness; for they who profess themselves to be wise, consider it as a fable, that the Son of God should speak in a human form, and that God should have a Son, and that he should suffer. From whence the prejudice of self-opinion over-persuaded them to disbelieve. For the coming of our Saviour did not make men


[ocr errors]
« AnteriorContinua »