Skip to main content

Full text of "The doctrinal theology of the Evangelical Lutheran Church"

See other formats















ffourtb BDftfon, 




COPYRIGHT, 1875 AND 1889, 





FOR twenty-three years former editions of this translation 
have been widely used in Lutheran Seminaries. The aim of 
its compiler was of a purely historical character. It was not to 
afford a summary of the absolutely final definitions of Luth 
eran Theology, but to exhibit the teaching that had been 
current up to the time of the beginnings of Rationalism. As 
such, it does not grow obsolete. No public teacher in the 
Lutheran Church is qualified for his work without knowing 
the positions held by the leading Dogmaticians, even though 
he may often regard them open to criticism. The book re 
quires the living teacher to indicate the weaknesses, as well as 
the excellences of these revered authorities. Definitions in 
Theology are always to be interpreted historically. The roots 
of Biblical Theology are found in Chemnitz and the theolo 
gians who lived nearest the time of Luther ; but a different 
method prevails in their successors. While occasionally 
giving a hint concerning the changes that are thus pro 
duced, Dr. Schmid does not make this a prominent part 
of his treatment. 

The second edition of this translation, published in 1889, 
aimed at a faithful reproduction of the Fifth Edition of the 
original, the last published in the life of its author, together 
with such additions from the same authorities from which Dr. 
Schmid had compiled as would render the work more service 
able to American students. In the present edition, we have 
followed in general the same plan ; but have taken the liberty 
of dispensing with a few of the quotations from the old theolo 
gians, which no one will miss, as, e. g., the long discussion on 

COPYRIGHT, 1875 AND 1889, 



FOR twenty-three years former editions of this translation 
have been widely used in Lutheran Seminaries. The aim of 
its compiler was of a purely historical character. It was not to 
afford a summary of the absolutely final definitions of Luth 
eran Theology, but to exhibit the teaching that had been 
current up to the time of the beginnings of Rationalism. As 
such, it does not grow obsolete. No public teacher in the 
Lutheran Church is qualified for his work without knowing 
the positions held by the leading Dogmaticians, even though 
he may often regard them open to criticism. The book re 
quires the living teacher to indicate the weaknesses, as well as 
the excellences of these revered authorities. Definitions in 
Theology are always to be interpreted historically. The roots 
of Biblical Theology are found in Chemnitz and the theolo 
gians who lived nearest the time of Luther ; but a different 
method prevails in their successors. While occasionally 
giving a hint concerning the changes that are thus pro 
duced, Dr. Schmid does not make this a prominent part 
of his treatment. 

The second edition of this translation, published in 1889, 
aimed at a faithful reproduction of the Fifth Edition of the 
original, the last published in the life of its author, together 
with such additions from the same authorities from which Dr. 
Schmid had compiled as would render the work more service 
able to American students. In the present edition, we have 
followed in general the same plan ; but have taken the liberty 
of dispensing with a few of the quotations from the old theolo 
gians, which no one will miss, as, e. g., the long discussion on 


demoniacal possession. Dr. Schmid s own statements are un 
changed and unabbreviated ; but his compilations have been 
edited and enriched. A similar attempt was made in Ger 
many, about five years ago, by Prof. Dr. Franck, of Erlangen, 
Dr. Schmid s son-in-law. 

Festival of the Reformation, 1898. 


1-13. INTRODUCTION, 15-102 



2. Meaning of the term Natural and Revealed Its Divisions Its End Who 
is a Theologian ? The need of the Holy Spirit, . . . 15-20 



3. Religion, true and false. Characteristics of the true Proofs for the Chris 
tian Religion 21-25 



4. Revelation Not Reason Not Tradition. . . . . 25-29 

5. On the Use of Reason in Theology What is Reason ? Relation of Reason to 

Revelation Reason before the Fall Reason since the Fall Reason not 
normative Reason a Handmaid to Theology Reason useful in its Sphere 
Mixed and Pure Articles. 29-38 




6. The terms Sacred Scriptures and Inspiration. Scriptures, the written Word of 

God Their two-fold origin Meaning of Inspiration Extent of Inspira 
tion Inspiration distinct from Revelation, .... 38-50 

7. The Attributes of the Sacred Scriptures, -^O 

8. 1. Authority of the Scriptures, (a) Causative Authority of the Sacred Scriptures. 

Proofs of Inspiration Proofs not needed for Believers Only real Proof, 
the work of the Holy Spirit Internal Criteria of Inspiration External 
Criteria of Inspiration, (b) Normative or Canonical Authority of the Sacred 
Scriptures. The Scriptures the only Rule of Faith The Scriptures derive 
no authority from the Church The Scriptures the only Judge of Contro 
versies -Who are to interpret the Scriptures? Original languages alone 
authoritative, 51-64 

9. 2. The Perfection or Sufficiency of the Scriptures. The consequence of Inspira 

tion The abuse and use of Tradition, 64-68 

10. 3. The Perspicuity of the Scriptures. Meaning of Perspicuity Extent of 

Perspicuity Perspicuity absolute and ordinate Piety essential to an In 
terpreter The Literal and Spiritual Sense Obscure Things in Perspicuous 
"Words Analogy of the Faith The Mystical Sense, . . 68-80 

11. 4. The Efficacy of the Scriptures. The topic is discussed under the kead of 

"The Means of Grace," . . 80 

12. Of the Canon and (he Apocrypha. The Old and New Testaments The Apo 

cryphal Books Marks of Canonicity External and Internal Testimony 
of the Ancient Church The Antilegomena of the New Testament, 80-92 



13. What are Articles of Faith? How related to each other? Pure and 
mixed Fundamental and non-fundamental Earlier and Later Sym 
bolsRelation of the Symbols to the Scriptures Necessity of the Sym 
bols 92-102 



\ 14. Division of the Subject, ... . . . 103 



8 15. Preliminary statement The natural and supernatural Knowledge of God- 
Innate Natural Knowledge of God Acquired Natural Knowledge of God 
Imperfection of such knowledge Value of such knowledge Super 
natural Knowledge of God, 103-111 

$16. 1. The Certainty of the Existence of God, ..... HI 

17. 2. The Nature of God His name Cannot be defined Approximate 
definitions, . . . . . . . . 111-117 

\ 18. 3. The Attributes of God Not Accidents They are one with the Divine 
Essence Threefold Method of recognizing them Classification of Divine 
Attributes. I. Negative Attributes. Unity Simplicity Immutability 
Infinity Immensity Eternity. II. Positive Attributes. Life Knowledge 
Wisdom Holiness Justice Truth Power Goodness, . 117-129 



$ 19. The Doctrine is a Mystery Purely a Matter of Revelation It is a Funda 
mental Doctrine The Church does not claim to understand it Why de 
scribed in Philosophical Terms Gradual Development of the Doctrine 
Definition of the Trinitarian Terminology. 1. Numerical Unity of the Di 
vine Essence. 2. Diversity and Plurality; not (a) Essential; nor (6) 
Accidental ; but (c) Hypostatical. Specific Hypostatical Distinctions- 
Personal Properties. I. God the Father. II. God the Son The Eternal 
Generation. III. God the Holy Ghost Procession. Scriptural Proof of 
the Doctrine of the Trinity, . ." . . . 129-159 



20. 1. Creation a Divine work. 2. The World created from Nothing. 3. Mat 
ter not Eternal. 4. Order and Manner of Creation Dichotomy or Tri- 


chotoiny ? Creationism or Traducianistn ? 5. Design of Creation. 6. 
-Excellence of Creation. 7. Time of Creation, . 159-170 



\ "21. The Doctrine taught both by Reason and Revelation Comprehends Fore 
knowledge, Predetermination, and Administration Basis of the Divine 
Foreknowledge. I. Preservation, or Continuous Creation Influence of 
Second Causes May Providence be deceived? II. Concurrence, or 
Divine Co-operation. Does God concur with sin ? III. Government, or 
Divine Control Does not neutralize Human Freedom Providence em 
braces all Things Providence, general and special, extraordinary and 
ordinary, 1-1M 



| 22. When were they created? I. The Nature of Angels. Design of their Cre- 
tion Attributes of the Angels. II. The Moral Condition of the Angels. 
Their Original Condition. A. The Good Angel*. Their Powers enlarged 

Their Employments. B. The Evil Angels. Consequences of their fall 

Demoniacal Possession 195-216 



23. General Statement, - 17 


g 24. State of Integrity Defined. Meaning of the Image of God Original Right 
eousnessOther Features of the Image of God, . 217-231 



25. State of Corruption Defined, Of Sin in General Cause of Sin Immediate 
Consequence of Sin, 


26. Man s First Sin and his consequent Depravity. How did Adam sin? All 

men sinned in Adam Imputation, Arguments of Pelagians answered 
What is Natural Depravity? Natural Depravity Inherent Natural De 
pravity Hereditary Is Original Sin an Accident? Termination of Original 
Sin. 234-250 

27. Actual Sins. Classified Sin against the Holy Ghost, . . 250-257 

28. The Freedom of the Will. Human Ability No Free Will in Spiritual 
Things Extent of Freedom Synergism Unscriptural Civil Righteous 
nessThreefold Condition of the Will, 257-268 


| 29. Sources of Salvation, 269 



$30. Of the Benevolence of God towards Fallen Man. 1. T he Universal Benevo 
lence of God. Gratuitous Impartial Sincere Efficacious Conditioned. 
2. The Special Benevolence of God. Consequent Particular Predesti 
nation or Election Divine Decrees not absolute or arbitrary Election 
with respect to faith Election and Foreknowledge Divine Decrees not 
conditioned, but categorical Election is immutable and irrevocable 
Reprobation Defined and Illustrated 270-292 


g 31. Statement of the Subject, . . . . . . . 293-294 

A. Of the Person of Christ. 

\ 32. Of the Personal Union. I. Of the Two Natures in Christ, Truly Divine 
and truly Human Attributes of Christ s Humanity. II. Mode of the Per- 
(>nal Union. Negatively stated Positively stated, . 294-309 


\ 33. Of the Communion of .Natures, the Personal Designations, and the Com- 
municatio Idioinatum Communion of Natures denned No Intermixture 
of Natures, but I. Interchange of Designations. II. Communication of 
Properties. 1. Idiomatic. 2. Majestatic. 3. Apotelesmatic Meaning 
of Perichoresis Concrete of Nature and Person Communication Patris 
tic Designations Lutheran and Reformed views Diversity among the 
Lutheran Dogmaticians, ....... 309-337 

B.Of the Office of Christ. 

# 34. The Threefold Office of Christ His Mediatorial Work in its threefold 
aspect, .....- 337-339 

\ 35. The Prophetic Office of Christ. Denned The Immediate and Mediate, 340-342 

\ 36. The Sacerdotal Office of Christ. Defined. I. Satisfaction. Why was Satis 
faction needed? Antitheses of the Socinians Satisfaction Infinite 
Christ s Active and Passive Obedience Vicarious Satisfaction Complete 
ness of the Satisfaction Its Real Object Its Personal Object. II. Inter 
cession. General and Special Redemption, .... 342-370 

I 37. The Regal Office of Christ. I. The Kingdom of Power. II. The King 
dom of Grace. III. The Kingdom of Glory The Delivery of the 
Kingdom, - 370-376 

C. The States of Christ. 

\ 38. I. The State of Humiliation. Conception Nativity Circumcision Educa 
tion Earthly Intercourse Passion Death Burial Incarnation not 
Humiliation "The Form of God." II. T he State of Exaltation. Descent 
into Hell Resurrection Ascension Sitting at the Right Hand of God. 
Diverse views of the Dogmaticians, 376-407 



\ 39. Preliminary Remarks 407-409 

\ 40. The Agent The Means The Result, .... 410 

41- 1- Of Faith. Its Constituent Elements Explicit and Implicit Confidence, 
the Chief Part Special Faith Faith of Infants Living and Dead Faith 
Contrasted Nature of Justifying Faith Efficient Cause of Faith Instru 
mental Cause of Faith Grades of Faith Assurance of Faith, 410-424 

\ 42. 2. Of Justification. The immediate Effect of Faith Justification a Divine 
Forensic Act, embracing I. The Forgiveness of Sins. II. The Imputation 
of the Righteousness of Christ. The Ground of Justification The Means 


of Justification Osiander s Error Justification a Free Gift of God 
Good Works and Justification The Exclusive Particles The Effects of 
Justification . 424-441 

43. Concomitants and Consequences of Justifying Faith, . 441 

44. 1. Of the Divine Call. Necessity, Efficacy and Universality of the 

Call 442-450 

45. 2. Of Illumination. Necessity of Illumination by the Holy Spirit Its 

Influence upon Intellect and Will Legal and Evangelical Illumi 
nation, 450-458 

46. 3. Of Reyeneration and Conversion. The Terms defined and contrasted. I. 

Regeneration. Regeneration a Divine Act Regeneration of Infants and 
Adults contrasted Regeneration always Divinely efficacious Regenera 
tion amissible and recoverable. II. Conversion. Conversion a Divine Act 
Elements of Repentance Private Confession Conversion ends in Faith 
Prevenient and Co-operating Grace The Divine Word the Instrument 
The Human Will in Conversion Converting Grace may be re 
sisted, 458-480 

47. 4. Of the Mystical Union. Not Metaphorical but Real Union, General and 

Special, 481-486 

48. 5. Of Renovation. Renovation contrasted with Regeneration A gradual 

work 486-491 

49. Supplementary. Of Good Works. The Effect of Renovation Can Unbe 

lievers perform Good Works? Must Believers perform Good Works? 
The Works of the Unregenerate Reward of Good Works, . 491-499 





\ 50. Preliminary Statement, 500 

\ 51. Of the Efficacy of the Divine Word. The Supernatural Power of the Word 
Mysticism and Enthusiasm, ...... 500-508 

| 52. Of the Law and the Gospel. I. The Law. The Ceremonial Law The 
Moral Law Fourfold Use. II. The Gospel. The Gospel in Embryo in 
the Old Testament The Gospel and the Law Contrasted Concurrence of 
the Law and the Gospel, ... 508-520 




53. Of the Sacraments in general. What onstitutes a Sacrament? Only Two 

Sacraments The two Factors Requisites The Act of Administration 
Ex Opere Operate " rejected Relation of Word to Sacrament Design 
of the Sacraments Proper Use of the Sacraments Old Testament Sacra 
ments, 520-536 

54. Of Baptism. The Holy Spirit in Baptism Sacramental Union Usages- 

Design Affusion Baptismal Formulae Explained Exorcism Baptism 
by Heretics Infant Baptism Infant Faith Baptismal Grace Continuous 
Necessity of Baptism, ....... 536-555 

55. Of the Lord" s Supper. I. The Nature of the Lord? 8 Supper. The Words of 

the Institution to be literally interpreted The Mode of the Saviour s 
Presence Omnipresence of the Human Nature of Christ Sacramental 
Manducation Sacramental Union Distinction between the Lutheran and 
Reformed Doctrine Xo Consubstantiation Distinction between the 
Lutheran and Romish Doctrine. II. The Form nf the Lords Supper. 
Consecration and Distribution are Essential- Sacramental Union only dur 
ing distribution The Worthy Reception Is it a Sacrifice? III. The 
Desiyn of the Lord! s Supper. Commemorative Nutritive Imparts Saving 
Grace Promotes Christian Fellowship, .... 555-582 



5(1 Of the Church in a Wider and a Narrower Sense. The Assembly of Be 
lieversChurch Militant and Triumphant Church Catholic Universal 
and Particular In what Sense, Visible and Invisible Church, True and 
False 582-599 

57. Of the Church Collective and Representative. Special and General Councils 
Authority of the Councils, 599-604 

158. Of the Three Estates in the Church 604-605 

% 59. I. The Ecclesiastical Estate. The Holy Ministry a Divinely-appointed 
Office The Church gives the Mediate Call Ordination confirms this Call 
The Power of the Keys Is Ordination Necessary ? Duty of Obedience 
Grades in the Ministry, . . ... . . 605-616 

\ 60. II. The Political Estate. The Civil Authority Divinely-appointed De 
sign of the Civil Authority Relation of the Civil Authority to the 
Church, . . . . 616-619 

g 61. III. The Domestic Estate. 1. The Marriage Relation Divorce. 2. The 
Parental Relation. 3. The Relation of Master and Servant, 619-623 



- - I : - S. U (.1 / , 

? 62. Preliminary Statement, 624 

I 63. I. Of Death. The Consequence of the Fall The Dissolution of Soul and 
Body Death threefold The Immortality of the Soul No Intermediate 
State of Dormancy, -....,. 624-639 

\ 64. II. Of the Resurrection of the Dead. Attributes of the Resurrection 
Body, 640-643 

\ 65. III. Of the Final Judgment. The Signs of its Approach Antichrist Con 
version of the Jews Christ the Judge Form of the Final Judg 
ment, . .... 643-655 

66. IV. Of the End of the World, 655-656 

#67. V. Of Eternal Damnation and Eternal Life. 1. Eternal Death. 2. Eternal 
Lif e- . . 656-6C.3 


Sketch of the Dogmaticians cited, ...... 665-<:" l 


Explanation of some Scholastico-dogmatic terms, . . . 673-67A 

INDEX, ........ 677 


Ap. Conf., Apology of the Augsburg Confession. 

Art. Smalcald, Smalcald Articles. 

Bchm., Bechmann. 

jj r .... Baier. 

Brchm Brochmann. 

(vi .... Calovius. 

Cat Mai . . Luther s Large Catechism. 

CatMin. , ... Luther s Small Catechism. 

Chmn., Chemnitz. 

Chmn ex. c. Trid., .... Chemnitz on the Council of Trent. 

( d c p ... Chemnitz on the Lord s Supper. 

Conf. Aug. , . - . . Augsburg Confession. 

Form. Cone., The Formula of Concord. 

Grh. ...... Gerhard. 

Hfrffr. .... Hafenreffer. 

I loll., Hollazius. 

Hutt Hutterus. 

Rg^ Koenig. 

\j e l .... Melanchthon. 

Quen., Quenstedt. 

Schrzr Scherzer. 

Seln Selnecker. 

Symb. Nic., Nicene Creed. 



1. Of Theology in General, etc. 

Introduction treats: 1. Of Theology in general ; 2. Of 
-*- the Subject of Theology, Religion ; 3. Of the Source of TJie- 
ology, Revelation in general (with an appendix, on the Use of 
Reason in Theology) ; 4. Of the Holy Scriptures, in which Rev 
elation is contained ; 5. Of the Articles of Faith, which com 
prise the contents of the Holy Scriptures ; and of the Symbolical 
Books, which contain the Confession of the Church. 



2. Meaning of the terms, Natural and Revealed. 

Y Theology we understand, according to the etymology of 
the term, the knowledge or doctrine of God and of divine 
things [1]. Such a knowledge we gain, partly in a natural 
way, by the use of reason alone, partly in a supernatural way, 
by special revelation ; and hence Theology is divided into 
Natural and Revealed. [2] In both cases, however, Theology 
is not a mere outward knowledge, by which the understanding 
alone is enriched, but is of such a nature as to make man truly 
wise, and show him the way to be saved ; hence Theology, 
strictly so-called, must be denned : " Eminently practical wis 
dom, teaching from the revealed Word of God all things which 
sinful man, who is to be saved, needs to know and to do, in order to 
attain true faith in Christ and holiness of life." [3] (HOLL. 1.) If, 



however, we leave out of view the influence which Theology 
exerts upon man, and consider only its subject-matter, Theology 
may be defined as the du trine concerning Clod and all religious 
truths, the province of which is to instruct men concerning the 
means by which they may be saved. Theology, rieiced ..- a 
system <nid in a secondary sense, is the doctrine concerning (ind, 
which teachc* man, from the dirine Word, as to the true method of 
worshijiiixj (iod in Christ, unto Vernal life." (Ilni.i.. 7.)[4] 

[1] QIK.V (I, 1); "Theology, if you consider the force and 
usage of the word, is nothing else than >; - / - " " 
Utiur, what is said about God and divine things, as m r/iro>.) / is 
what is said about spirits, and uor/w/.o) ( , what is said alxtut tin- 

The word is sometimes employed in a wider and sometimes in a 
narrower sense. The different significations are thus stated by 
IIoi.i.. (. {): The word Tfieolnyy is employed in a fourfold sense; 
(a) most eomprehensively, for every doctrine concerning (Jod, 
whether true or mixed with error; (/>) comprehensively, for true 
Theology, either in itself considered, or as communicated; either 
of men on earth or of saints in heaven; either natural or re 
vealed; (r) specially, of revealed Theology, that guides mortal 
man to eternal life; (d) most specifically, of the doctrine concern 
ing the one and triune (Jod." 

In all these significations, reference is had merely to the The 
ology of the creature, i. e., to the knowledge which creatures have 
of (iod, and not to that which (iod has of Himself. Theologians 
distinguish also between these, and call the former thnJiHfiti /*rrTm 
(derived Theology), and the latter thmhtyia a/n/nTof (original The 
ology), by which they mean to say that our knowledge of (Jod, 
although derived and not original, is, nevertheless, absolutely 
correct, because derived from God, and only the faithful copy 
of His own knowledge. HOLL. (3 and 4): "Archetypal Theology 
is the knowledge which (Jod has of Himself, and which in Him is 
the model of another Theology, which is communicated to intelli 
gent creatures. Ectypal Theology is the science of God and divine 
things communicated to intelligent creatures by God, after His own 
Theology, as a pattern. We thus prove our assertion: (1.) Man 
was made complete, in the image of (iod. But the image of (Jod 
consisted in a knowledge of God conformed to the divine wisdom. 
Therefore its archetype was the infinite wisdom of God. (2.) 
Fallen man is renewed in knowledge after the image of God," 


Col. 3 : 10. Therefore his prototype is the divine self-knowledge. 
For the knowledge of God and of divine things, which divine reve 
lation communicates to the minds of men, is called by the Apostle 
knowledge after the image of God, for no other reason than because 
it is expressed in imitation of the knowledge which God has of 
Himself and of all divine things." Considered in its relation to 
Christ: "Archetypal Theology belongs to Christ essentially, and 
through His nature, inasmuch as He is eternal God ; it belongs to 
Him, as to His human nature, personally, and through the rommu- 
nicatio idiamatum, by virtue of the personal union." Concerning 
Ectypal Theology, QUEX. further adds (I, 5): "We have one 
Ectypal Theology in Christ, viewed as to His human nature, an 
other in angels, and a third in men. (I, 6.) The Ectypal The 
ology of mere men is either that of the Way, t, e., of this life, 
viz., of mortals, or that of the Home,* i. r., of the other and 
happy life, viz., of the finally saved. The Theology of the Way, 
or of mortals, is twofold, viz., that In-fore and that after the Fall. 
That which describes man before the Fall, in the state of integrity, 
is called also the jumidisaical, from the place in which man was 
placed." Hut, in reference to all these divisions, BAIER remarks 
(4). "As the ugu* lofftimdi does not allow us to call either God, 
or Christ, or men in heaven, or angels, theologians, it readily appears 
that that meaning must here be rejected, which obtains elsewhere, 
when we add to the definition, the theology of the way. " 

[2] HOLL. (6): "The Theology of the Way is twofold, natural 
and revealed (supernatural). The former is that according to 
which God is known both by innate ideas, ami by the inspection 
of created thing*. The latter is the knowledge of God and of divine 
things, which God communicate* to man u|K>n earth, either by 
immediate revelation or inspiration (to prophets and apostles), or 
by mediate revelation or the divine Won!, committed to writing." 

[3] Still more frequently Theology is called a jtractiaU habit. 
AM it appeared to the theological writers that the expression science 
gave too much prominence to the mere acquaintance with the 
subjects concerned, they therefore sought a definition in which it 
should be distinctly expressed that by Theology there was meant 
a divinely-wrought knowledge, such as urged its possessor to put 
to practice what he learned. 

[The dogmaticians follow the mediaeval mystics and some scho 
lastics, in defining Theology as "wisdom * rather than "science," 
thus emphasizing the need of spiritual illumination for the appro- 

* This distinction is founded upon 1 Cor. 9 : 24 ; 2 Cor. 5 : 6, 8. It is made 
fl early as Thomas Aquinas. 



hension of its truths. Scotus taught that Theology could be a 
science only to the glorified; to others, it could only be a matter of 
faith. On this, GRHIX (-11, 4): "To believe and know are partic 
ularly unlike; for scientific certainty depends upon internal and 
inherent principles, but that of faith, upon external, viz., upon the 
authority of the Revealer. Besides, the subject of Theology is 
Christ, the knowledge of whom cannot be acquired in a scientific 
way, but from divine revelation. Matt. Ifi: 17; 1 Cor. 2: 7. In 
Theology, the intellect is not the source, but the end. We believe, 
that we may know; we do not know, in order that we may believe. 
Cf. Is. 7:9."] 

QUEN. (I, 11): "We are here speaking of Theology, not as to 
what it signifies in a book, but as to what it is, subjectively in the 

GRH. thus defines (II, 13): "Theology, viewed as a discipline 
and concretely, is a divinely-given discipline, bestowed upon man 
by the Holy Spirit through the Word, whereby he is not only in 
structed in the knowledge of divine mysteries, by the illumination 
of the mind, so that what he understands produces a salutary effect 
upon the disposition of his heart and the actions of his life, but so 
that he is also qualified to inform others concerning these divine 
mysteries and the way of salvation, and to vindicate heavenly truth 
from the aspersions of its foes ; so that men, abounding in true 
faith and good works, are led to the kingdom of heaven." 

QUEN. (I, 16): "A distinction is made between theoretical habit*, 
which consist wholly in the mere contemplation of the truth, and 
practical habits, which, indeed, require a knowledge of whatever is 
to be done, but which do not end in this, nor have it as their aim, 
but which lead to practice and action. Theology, we refer, not to 
the theoretical, but to the practical habits." 

HOLL. (8) thus states the reasons for this distinction: "(1) Be 
cause the immediate aim of Theology is true faith in Christ, the 
operation of which is twofold, viz. : internal, which embraces Christ 
with His benefits, and external, which produces good works, the fruit 
of righteousness. The ultimate end of Theology is eternal happiness, 
which consists not only in the intuitive knowledge of God, but also 
in the enjoyment of God. (2) Because Theology treats of man, not 
theoretically, as the subject of its description, as certain qualities are 
ascribed to man in Physiology, but as the subject of its operation, or 
how he, as a sinner, is to be freed from his misery and transferred 
into a state of blessedness ... (3) Because Paul himself defines 
Theology to be the knowledge of the truth which is after godli 
ness. Tit. 1: 1." 


[4] QUEN. (I, 11): "The term Theology is taken either essen 
tially, absolutely, and as a mental habitude, for the knowledge which 
the mind holds and to which it clings, or in as far as it is a habit 
of the human mind ; * or accidentally, relatively, systematically, in so 
far as it is the doctrine or branch of learning which is taught and 
learned, or contained in books. The former is the primary, the 
latter the secondary application of the term." 

As to the subject-matter of Theology, systematically considered, out 
of which it is drawn, ROLL. (11) states: "It consists of theological 
truth, i. e., of facts or conclusions known or deduced from the 
supernatural revelation of God." In regard to the subject-matter 
concerning which it treats : Theology in general discusses God and 
divine things, in so far as they have been truly revealed through 
the divine Word to sinful man, to be believed and practiced. Spe- 
rijically, it teaches by what ways and means mortal man, corrupted 
by sin, is to be introduced into eternal life." 

Theology is divided, according to KG., (3) into: "Catechetical, or 
simple, such as is required of all Christians, and acroamatic, or more 
accurate, which is the province of the learned and ministers of the 
Word. The latter is divided, according to the method of treating 
it, into exegetical, which is employed in the exhibition of the sacred 
text; didactic strictly so-called, which discusses theological subjects 
in order and systematically; polemic, which treats of theological 
controversies; homiletic, which teaches the method of preaching to 
the people; casuistic, which solves doubtful cases of conscience; 
ecclesiastical, which treats of church discipline, visitations, synods, 
etc., etc. 

Corresponding to the two definitions of Theology, we have 
(HoLL. 13 seq. ): "The Theologian properly and strictly so-called ; a 
regenerated man, firmly believing in the divine Word, that reveals 
the mysteries of faith, adhering to it with unshaken confidence, apt 
in teaching others and confuting opponents. A Theologian, in the 
general sense of the term, is a man well instructed in the depart 
ment of Theology, whereby he is rendered prompt in expounding 
and defending heavenly truth. The Theologian in a under sense may 
be one who while rightly discharging the office of a Theologian by 
expounding, confirming and defending theological truths, is, never 
theless, destitute of sincere holiness of disposition." The " theo 
logical knowledge of a truly regenerated and renewed man 1 is described 
as spiritual knowledge, by which the literal sense of the Biblical 
language is applied according to the use designed by the Holy 
Spirit, and produces spiritual and godly emotions of the heart;" 

*See explanation of scholastic terms, Appendix II. 


the "knowledge of an unregenerate Theologian," on the other hand as 
"a merely literal knowledge, which is applied to the investigation, 
development, and apprehension of the sense of Scripture, and not 
to the use designed by the Holy Spirit," Concerning this spiritual 
knowledge, we have the remark : "Far be it from us that we should 
assert, with the fanatics, that spiritual theological knowledge is 
derived either from the immediate illumination of the Holy Spirit, 
or from the internal light or mnemonic power of the soul, through 
introversion into the hidden recesses of the soul, or that it compre 
hends only the mystical sense ! We know that the literal sense of 
the Biblical language is primarily and immediately set forth in the 
words inspired by the Holy Spirit, Literal theological knowledge is, 
moreover, distinguished as "external, by which one treats the words 
of Scripture, in so far as they are analogous to human words, 
according to the rules of grammar and rhetoric, and searches out 
and extracts some meaning from them ; and internal, by which 
>one properly estimates the words of Scripture as the truly divine 
receptacles or vehicles of the mysteries of the faith, and apprehends, 
with firm assent, their true literal sense, conformed to the mind of 
the Holy Spirit." And, with an illusion to QUEN., he adds: | To 
understand the internal literal sense, which is spiritual and divine, 
the illumination of the Holy Spirit is needed ; the illumination 
may be imperfect, of which the unregenerate are capable, or perfect, 
such as the regenerate enjoy." This internal, literal knowledge is, 
therefore, not natural or carnal, but supernatural. "It is super 
natural (a) by virtue of its origin, for it is derived from the light 
of supernatural revelation; (6) by virtue of its object, ... for the 
mysteries of the faith are the object of literal knowledge (But what 
is a mystery other than a doctrine transcending the grasp of un 
aided reason?) (c) in view of the impotence of the intellectual 
subject, 1 Cor. 2: 14; (d) on account of the intimate connection 
between the Holy Spirit and the Scriptures. For, if the literal 
internal knowledge of believers be not supernatural, the Holy Spirit 
is not perpetually and inseparably united with the Holy Scriptures. 
But the Holy Spirit is perpetually and inseparably united with the 
Holy Scriptures ; therefore," etc. 



3. Religion, True and False. 

r I ^HE subject of Theology is accordingly, Religion. [1] Re- 
-^- ligion is the way and manner in which God is wor 
shiped. That is a false religion in which God is worshiped 
in a manner that does not accord with His nature and will ; 
that is the true and right religion in which this is done in the 
manner which He regards as right and which He prescribes, 
[2] so that hereby man, estranged from God, is brought back 
again to Him, and secures his salvation. This proper man 
ner is taught in the Holy Scriptures ; and thus the true re 
ligion, more accurately defined, is that in which God is wor 
shiped in the manner therein prescribed, and therefore the 
Christian Religion is the true one. [3] The proper manner 
of worshiping God must, accordingly, first of all, manifest 
itself in that disposition of soul towards God which is agree 
able to Him, and secondly, in love toward our neighbor and 
the practice of all the virtues enjoined by God. [4] In the 
widest sense, therefore, Religion embraces all that God com 
mands to be believed and to be done. [5] 

[1] HOLL. (32): "Some suppose the term Religion to be de 
rived from religando (Lactantius), others from relegendo (Cicero). 
According to the former derivation, religion signifies the obligation 
rightly to worship God, or, that which imposes upon man obliga 
tions and duties. According to the latter etymology, religion is 
diligent attention to those things which pertain to the worship of 
God. The former derivation is more generally received." QUEN. 
"Synonymous are ityfama, James 1 : 26; ewe/toa, 1 Tim. 4:8; 

Aoyi/c# iMTpeia, Rom. 12 : 1." 

[2] QUEN. (I, 19): "The Christian religion is the method of 
worshiping God prescribed in the Word, by which man, separated 
from God by sin, is led back to God, through faith in Jesus Christ 
(who is both God and man), so that he is reunited with God, and 
enjoys Him eternally." 


HOLL. (33): "Religion, improperly speaking, signifies the false, 
properly speaking, the true method of worshiping God. 

HOLL. (60) : " As opposed to the true Religion, we have not only 
false religion, but also atheism or irreligion. A false religion is 
that in which either false gods are worshiped, or the true God is 
improperly worshiped. Irreligion is that in which impious men 
regard all religion with contempt, so that, denying the providence 
and punitive justice of God, they boldly and recklessly do as they 

[3] HOLL. (34): "The true Religion is that which is conformed 
to the Divine Word." 

That the Christian religion is the true one is proved by CAL. 1 : 
152 sqq. : 

" (1) From the requisites of a true religion. A religion which is 
true and has proceeded from God, must have these characteristics : 
(a) Not to teach false, corrupt or absurd things. (6) Not to be 
new but to have existed since the creation of man as an institution 
for communicating salvation, (e) Not to have perished or here 
after to perish, (d) Not to leave men in their former errors, much 
less to sink them the more deeply, but to lead them to holiness. 
All these characteristics pertain to no other than the Christian 
religion; since every other religion teaches false, absurd, base 
things, has originated since men, etc. 

(2) From the truth of Scripture. For since the Christian religion 
is compnsed in the Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments, its 
truth will be proved from the truth of these Scriptures, as else 
where set forth. 

(3) From the religion of the Hebrew s. For the religion of the 
Christians and of the ancient patriarchs is one and the same. 

(4) From the supreme dignity of its rewards. For the excellence of 
the Christian religion is displayed by the fact that in all ages and 
nations, none can be produced either more excellent in its rewards, 
more perfect in its precepts, more sublime in its mysteries or more 
admirable in the method in which it is to be propagated. For 
while among the Greeks some entertained the hope of life after the 
end of the present life, nevertheless they spoke with great hesi 
tancy concerning it (Socrates in Plato s PhaBdo, Cicero s Tusculnn 
Disputations, Seneca s Epistles). Philosophers were divided into 
diverse opinions concerning the end of man, some making virtue 
the reward, others contending that pleasure is the highest good; 
the Christian religion, however, offers the true knowledge of this 
end, promising, after this life, a happy existence not only for the 
soul, but also for the body; nor are the joys it promises vile, as the 


banquets for which the Jews hope, or the licentious indulgence 
which Mohammedans expect, hut true, solid, perennial. Lactan- 
tius has well said (Institutes, 1. iii. , cap. xii. ) : Virtue is not happy 
of itself, since all its force is expended in the endurance of evil. 

(5) From the supreme holiness of its precepts. The sacred rites of 
the heathen, throughout almost the whole world, were full of 
cruelty. The mysteries of Ceres and Bacchus abounded in ob 
scenity. How profane and unworthy of God is Mohammedanism, 
the Koran can testify. The Christian religion requires an abso 
lutely holy worship of God, holy trust in Him, and all that is 
most worthy of God; and of like nature are the duties towards our 
neighbor which it enjoins. Mohammedanism was born in war, 
breathes nothing but war, is propagated everywhere by \var, while 
Christianity prohibits every injury, and wishes good to all. Many 
of the most eminent Greek philosophers praised a community of 
women, and even did not disapprove of sodomy, which w r as com 
mended by the example of the gods. But the Christian religion 
teaches that marriage must be held most holy. ... In short, 
nothing excellent can be found in any nation which is not taught 
in the Christian religion with still greater purity, and under sanc 
tion of divine authority, as modesty, temperance, prudence, the 
duties of magistrates and subjects, of parents and children, of 
husbands and wives, the avoidance of sin, etc. ; so that the sum of 
all its precepts is, to love God above all things, and our neighbor 
as ourselves. 

(6) From the sublimity of its mysteries. For whatever mystery 
other religions seem to have easily brings to those better informed 
the suspicion of vanity. Only the mysteries of the Christian re 
ligion are entirely placed beyond the reach of man s understand 
ing, and can be convicted of no falsity or superstition. 

(7) From the propagation of the Christian religion. For there is 
no religion so widely diffused. If Paganism be mentioned, you 
mention one name, but not one religion. 

(8) From the mode of its propagation. For the Christian religion 
made such progress, not by violence or arms, or the example of 
kings and the powerful. The first teachers of Christianity were of 
humble rank, and yet, through their agency, within thirty years it 
not only pervaded all parts of the Roman Empire, but was ex 
tended to the Parthians and inhabitants of India, Rom. 15: 19. 
Nor only in the beginning, but for about three centuries, it was 
advanced without threats of violence, and even with the power of 
the empire arrayed against it, so that before Constantine professed 
Christianity it had conquered almost the greater part of the Roman 


world. Nor was this done by any elaborate preparation, whether 
of eloquence or the various arts whereby philosophers rendered 
themselves commendable to the Gentiles. 

(9) From the multitude of its miracles. For, as the faith of the 
Old Testament was attested by most remarkable miracles, performed 
at various times but especially on the departure from Egypt and 
the entrance into Canaan, whereby its fame was spread abroad 
among the Gentiles, so far more numerous and more illustrious 
miracles proclaim the authority of the New Testament. 

(10) From the magnanimity of its martyrs. 

(11) From the testimony of other religions. The Jews, says 
Augustine (De Civitate Dei, 1. xviii., c. 45), are dispersed 
throughout the earth, and by their scriptures give a testimony 
that we have not invented the prophecies concerning Christ. The 
Mohammedans acknowledge Christ as the greatest prophet; and 
among the heathen many things occur corroborating its testimony 
in historical matters. 

(12) From the efficacy and power of Christian doctrine, in arousing, 
swaying, and soothing souls, attested not only by Scripture, but 
by innumerable examples of those converted to faith in Christ. 

[4] QUEN. (I, 20): "The Christian religion may be viewed 
either /^p^r (in part), or 6A/wj- (as a whole). Taken in the 
former sense it signifies, first and principally, the immediate wor 
ship of God, viz., evoefieia, or the piety which has regard to the 
worship of God according to the first table of the Law; secondarily, 
it signifies those other duties by which God is mediately wor 
shiped, which have respect to the second table of the Law. The 
love of our neighbor presupposes love to God; hence, secondarily 
and by analogy, the duty of love to our neighbor comes under the 
name of religion. 

BR. (16): "The term Religion signifies, in a stricter sense, either 
the habit of the will by which we are inclined to the love, honor 
and worship due God, on account of His excellence; or, the acts 
themselves, of honoring or worshiping God on account of His ex 
cellence; and, at the same time, it signifies, on the part of the in 
tellect, the true knowledge of God; on the part of the will, the 
other virtues (or virtuous acts) which aim at the honor and wor 
ship of God. But, in a wider sense, it denotes the whole circle of 
virtues or acts, that pertain to the worship of God. 

[5] HOLL. (43): " Under the name of the Christian Religion is 
comprehended whatever is to be believed and to be done by sinful 
man, in order to attain eternal life. As God is religiously wor 
shiped by true faith and the sincere effort to perform good works, 


so religion, which is the form or method of worshiping God, em 
braces within its compass things to be believed and things to be 
done. In a general sense, the things to be believed are all things 
revealed in the written Word of God; in a more limited sense, those 
which are revealed in the Word of God in regard to the salvation of 
man; in the most specific sense, they are mysteries, above the com 
prehension of reason, and to be learned alone from the divine 
revelation for our salvation. " Hence, " the subject-matter of Re 
ligion is faith, and love to God and our neighbor." 

We observe further, that GRH. and BR. do not treat of Religion 
as a separate topic. BR. has, under the head of The Nature and 
Constituent Elements of Theology, only the following proposition 
(14) : " In Natural Theology the means of attaining happiness are 
the acts of the mind and will directed towards God, by which God 
is rightly known and worshiped. They are known by one name, 
Religion." This is explained by the definition which the theolo 
gians give of Theology, for in accordance with this there is little 
material left for a special section on the subject of Religion. 


4. Revelation, not Reason, nor Tradition. 

TN order to understand what is true and correct Theology, 
-*- we must inquire for the Source from which we derive our 
knowledge of it. QUEN. 32 : " The source (principium) is that 
from which anything, in some manner or other, proceeds." 
This is the Revelation given by God. [1] By this divine Reve 
lation we understand here, not that which is given in nature, 
but that given in the Word (supernatural, as distinguished from 
natural revelation). [2] More accurately, therefore, we say : 
the source of theological knowledge is the revelation contained 
in the Holy Scriptures, [3] and this is, moreover, the only 
source of Theology, [4] and neither reason, [5] nor, at a later 
date, tradition, or the appeal to the consentaneous doctrine of 
the ancient church, [6] is to be ranked with it ; nor are supple 
mentary revelations now to be expected from any quarter. [7] 



[1] CAL. (I, 269); " Revelation is taken either in a formal sense, 
for the act of the divine communication, or objectively for that which 
is divinely revealed. The former sense is here intended. 

[2] HOLL. (61) : "We speak here not of that general revelation or 
natural manifestation, by which God makes Himself known both by 
the innate light of nature and by the effects conspicuous in the 
kingdom of nature. But we speak of the special and supernatural 
revelation, which is twofold, immediate and mediate. The Holy 
Spirit immediately illuminated the prophets and apostles, and sug 
gested to them conceptions of things and of words concerning doc 
trines of faith and moral precepts. At the present day God reveals 
Himself to men by means of the Word written by the prophets and 
apostles." Revelation is, therefore, denned as: "The external act 
of God, by which He makes Himself known to the human race by 
His Word, in order that they may have a saving knowledge of 
Him." QUEN. I, 32. 

CAL. (I, 268) thus states the proof that this divine revelation 
exists: "It having been proved, if this should be denied, that God 
is, and that there must be some method in which God may be wor 
shiped by men, we must teach, that it cannot be but that God has 
revealed that method, so that He may be worshiped properly; then, 
that God wishes men to be led to the enjoyment of Himself, and 
also, that He has revealed unto men the manner in which they arc 
to be thus led; finally, the fact that God has revealed Himself, must 
be taught from history, which revelation God has seen fit abund 
antly to accompany with miracles and documents, by which we are 
rendered absolutely certain that it is truly divine. Rom. 1: 16; 
2 Cor. 12: 12. But as one general revelation has been made in 
Nature, Rom. 1: 19 sq., and another special one by verbal com 
munication, it is first to be proved from nature that God is, inas 
much as God has revealed Himself unto all by His works, in the 
formation of this world ; and subsequently it is to be shown that 
God has revealed Himself to the human race in a more perfect 
manner by the Word." 

[3] QUEN. (I, 32): "The source of Theology is the written, 
divine revelation contained in the Holy Scriptures." HOLL. (61) 
more accurately: " Christian Theology is derived from an infallible 
source of knowledge, viz. , divine revelation, which, for the present 
state of the Church, is mediate, i. e., comprehended in the writings 
of the prophets and apostles." As proof, John 20: 31; 2 Tim. 3: 
14, 15 ; Rom. 15: 4; 2 Tim. 3: 16, 17. With regard to the differ 
ent modes of revelation in ancient times, Bn. (62): "Formerly 
God employed many and various methods in revealing those things 


which pertain to the salvation of man, Heb. 1:1. Specifically: 
(1. ) By articulate language, uttered in a supernatural way. Thus 
revelations were made to the patriarchs, Gen. 18: 2; 19: 1; 22: 1; 
to Moses, Ex. 3: 2; Num. 12: 6; to the Israelites, Ex. 19: 10. (2.) 
By dreams or visions, presented to the minds of the sleeping, Gen. 
28: 12; Dan. 2: 19. (3.) By ecstatic visions of the waking, Ez. 1: 
4; Dan. 10: 5; Acts 10: 10; finally (4.) By the immediate illu 
mination of the intellect, without the intervention of dreams and 
visions, 2 Tim. 3: 16; 2 Pet. 1: 21. But now, since God has 
chosen to present, in certain books, those things which are neces 
sary to be known with reference to revealed things, in order to sal 
vation, and not to communicate any new revelations, the only source 
of Theology is to be found in those ancient revelations which were 
made immediately to the prophets and apostles and have been 
committed to writing. 

Inasmuch, however, as the religion of the Old and New Testa 
ments is to be regarded as substantially the same, QUEN. (I, 32) 
adds the remark : "As the divine revelation became more full, in 
the course of time, so also did Theology, which was based upon it ; 
and as the former, just so the latter, gathered up its own additions 
in the progress of time, God meanwhile imparting new revelations. 
These additions did not relate to those things which constitute the 
foundation of faith and salvation, but to other things which render 
the statement and comprehension of these more complete, or which 
relate to various circumstances, rites, and ceremonies, and to eccles 
iastical order and discipline. 

If, therefore, the Holy Scriptures are thus the Source of Theol 
ogy, we are authorized to draw the following conclusion: "What 
ever the Holy Scriptures teach is infallibly true. Hence the early 
divines speak of a twofold source, viz. , the source indefinitely stated, 
i. e., by a single term ; and the source more fully stated, i. e. , by an 
entire proposition. The former is the Holy Scriptures. The latter, 
from which the doctrines of the Christian faith are deduced, and 
into which they are again merged, is this proposition : " Whatever 
God has revealed in His Word, that is infallibly true, and must be 
reverently believed and embraced." From the Holy Scriptures, 
then, as this source, are drawn all doctrinal truths. The source, 
whence theological conclusions are drawn, is but one, viz., the 
Word of God, or, Thus saith the Lord. Theological conclusions 
are nothing else than truths concerning the faith, elicited and de 
duced from the Word of God. 

[4] QUEN. (I, 33): "The sole, proper, adequate, and ordinary 
source of Theology and of the Christian Religion is the divine 


revelation contained in the Holy Scriptures; or, what is the same 
thing, that the canonical Scriptures alone are the absolute source 
of Theology, so that out of them alone are the articles of faith to be 
deduced and proved." 

Further (I, 36): " Divine revelation is the first and last source 
of sacred Theology, beyond which theological discussion among 
Christians dare not proceed. For every doubt concerning religion 
in the mind of a true Christian is removed by divine revelation, 
and by this the faith of the believer grows so strong, and is so 
firmly established, that it frees his mind from all fear and suspicion 
of deception, and imparts to him a firm assurance. 

.[5] QUEN. (I, 38): "Human or natural reason is not the source 
of Theology and supernatural things." 

[6] CAL. (I, 304): "We contend that, over and above the writ 
ten Word of God, there is at present no unwritten Word of God 
concerning any doctrine necessary to Christian faith and life, not 
comprehended in the Scriptures, that ever came forth from the 
apostles, was handed down by tradition, was preserved by the 
Church, and is to be received with equal reverence." 

QUEN. (I, 44): "The consent of the Primitive Church, or of 
the Fathers of the first centuries after Christ, is not a source of 
Christian faith, either primary or secondary, nor does it produce a 
divine, but merely a human or probable belief." In reference to 
this latter clause, HOLL. (71): " The consent of the Fathers is not 
to be esteemed of little, but of great importance, as a ground of 
credibility, as a secondary source of theological conclusions (viz. , 
because it furnishes opinions or conceptions that are probably 
true), and as a demonstrative and invaluable testimony that the 
early bishops of the Catholic Church understood and expounded 
passages of the Holy Scriptures in the same sense in which the 
Evangelical Church of the present day understands them." 

[7] HOLL. (63): "After the completion of the canon of Scrip 
ture, no new and immediate divine revelation was given to be a 
fundamental source of doctrine, 1 Cor. 4: 6; Heb. 1:1." QUEN. 
(I, 48): "The opposite opinion is that of various fanatics who 
hold that the knowledge of God, and of all doctrines that are to 
be believed, is not to be sought from the written Word of God, but 
that a higher wisdom than that contained in the Holy Scriptures 
is to be sought from a revelation especially made to each indi 
vidual, and from innate light, from ecstatic raptures, dreams, 
angelic communications, from an internal word, from the inspira 
tion of the Father, from knowledge internally communicated by 
Christ, who is essentially united with them, and from the instruc- 


tion of the Holy Spirit, speaking and teaching internally." [Cf. 
APOLOGY, 215: 13; SMALCALD ARTICLES, 332: 4; 333: 9, 10; LARGE 
CATECHISM, 499: 13; FORMULA OF CONCORD, 552: 4; 561: 46.] 

5. Excursus. Concerning the Use of Reason in TJieology. 

By the term Reason, we may understand either, the capacity 
of intellectual apprehension in general and this is essential to 
man, for it is only by means of this capacity, which distin 
guishes him from irrational animals, that he can comprehend 
the truths of religion; [1] or, the capacity of acquiring 
knowledge and appropriating truths. [2] The knowledge, 
however, which one thus acquires is, even if true, still defect 
ive and unsatisfactory, [3] and therefore Reason is by no 
means the source from which man can draw the knowledge 
of saving truths, [4] but for these the revelation contained in 
Holy Scripture remains ever the only source. 

The question now arises, How is Reason related to this reve 
lation, and what use can Theology make of Reason? 

Inasmuch as Reason also derives its knowledge from God, 
Reason and Revelation are, of course, not opposed to each 
other. [5] This holds true, however, only of Reason consid 
ered per se, of Reason as it was before the fall of man. This 
would have remained conscious of the limits of its sphere ; 
would not have sought to measure divine things by the rule 
of natural knowledge ; would have subordinated itself to Reve 
lation, [6] and would have known that there are truths which, 
although not in antagonism with it, are yet far beyond its 
reach. [7] 

But the case is very different with Reason as it dwells now 
in fallen man ; for we must concede that, by man s fall, such 
a change has occurred that Reason now often assumes a posi 
tion of antagonism to revealed truth. [8] It still, indeed, 
possesses some knowledge of divine things, but this knowledge 
is obscured in proportion to the moral depravity of man, and 
it now, more easily than before, transcends the assigned limits. 
If now Reason, even before the fall of man, had to keep 
within modest limits, with respect to the truths of Revelation, 
much less dare it now, in the fallen condition of man, assume 
to judge in regard to divine things, or subject the truths of 
Revelation to its tests ; still less dare it reject that which does 


not seem to agree with its knowledge : its duty rather is to 
subject itself to Revelation and learn therefrom. If this be 
done, however, much will again become intelligible that pre 
viously appeared contradictory, and Reason will again ap 
proach the condition occupied before the Fall. But this will 
be only an approach to that condition ; for just as man, even 
through regeneration, never again becomes entirely sinless, 
so the Reason of the regenerate never attains its original 
power. [9] We may therefore say of Reason, even when en 
lightened, that it can have no decisive judgment in regard 
to matters of faith, and possesses in such matters no norma 
tive authority, all the more since this was true of Reason be 
fore the Fall. [10] 

As to the use, then, that is to be made of Reason in Theol 
ogy, it follows, from what has been said, that Reason stands 
in the relation merely of a handmaid to the latter. [1 1] In 
so far as it is the capacity for intellectual apprehension in gen 
eral, the use that is to be made of it will consist in this, that 
man, by its help, intellectually apprehends the truths of The 
ology, and accepts from it the means of refuting opponents. 
In so far, however, as it also conveys knowledge, one may also 
employ it in the demonstration of a divine truth ; in such a 
case, Reason would contribute whatever of natural knowledge 
it has acquired. And just in the same proportion as Reason 
has suffered itself to be enlightened by divine Revelation, will 
it be able to demonstrate the harmony of divine truth with 
natural knowledge. [12] 

[1] CAL. (I, 358): "Human Reason denotes two things. On 
the one hand, it designates the intellect of man, that faculty of the 
rational soul that must be exercised in every kind of knowledge, 
since it is only by the reason or intellect that man can under 
stand." . . . HOLL. (69): "Without the use of reason we can 
not understand or prove theological doctrines, or defend them 
against the artful objections of opponents. Surely not to brutes, but 
to men using their sound reason, has God revealed the knowledge 
of eternal salvation in His Word, and upon them He has imposed 
the earnest injunction to read, hear, and meditate upon His Word. 
The intellect is therefore required, as the receiving subject or appre 
hending instrument. As we can see nothing without eyes, and hear 
nothing without ears, so we understand nothing without reason. 


[2] CAL. (ibid.): "On the other hand, Reason denotes Phil 
osophy itself, or the principles known from nature, and the discus 
sion or ratiocination based upon these known principles." These 
principles are divided "into organic and philosophical (strictly so 
called). The former (organic) relate to the mediate disciplines, 
grammar, rhetoric, and logic." (QuEN. (I, 39): "These are to be 
employed in Theology, as the means of becoming acquainted with 
Theology, since without them, neither the sense nor significance of 
the words can be derived, nor the figures and modes of speech be 
properly weighed, nor the connection and consequences be per 
ceived, nor discussions be instituted"). The latter (the philo 
sophical) are again divided into "philosophical principles absolutely 
and unrestrictedly universal (general or transcendental), which con 
sist of a combination of terms essential and simply necessary, so 
that they cannot be overthrown by any argument, not even by the 
Scriptures; e. g., It is impossible for anything to be and not to 
be at the same time; " and " philosophical principles restrictedly uni 
versal (special or particular), which are indeed true, to a certain 
extent, hypothetically, or so far as mere natural knowledge extends, 
but which, nevertheless, admit of limitation, and which may be 
invalidated by counter evidence drawn from revelation, if not from 
nature; e. g., As many as are the persons, so many are the 
essences, etc." HOLL. (68). Through these philosophical sources 
we can also gain a knowledge of God, for there is a natural knowl 
edge of God, described elsewhere by the Theologians under the 
heads of the innate, and the acquired knowledge of God. 

[3] CAL. (II, 47): "Of the natural knowledge of God there is 
predicated, as to those things that are revealed in nature, imperfec 
tion; and as to the supernatural mysteries of faith, entire worthless- 
ness [nullitas]. 

[4] HOLL. (69): "Meanwhile, nevertheless, human reason is 
not a fountain, or primordial element, from which the peculiar and 
fundamental principles of faith are derived." 

[5] FLACIUS, with his assertion, that "the knowledge of God, 
naturally implanted, is a light full of error, fallacious and decep 
tive," and subsequently, Daniel Hofmann ("Philosophy is hostile 
to Theology; what is true in Philosophy is false in Theology "), 
gave especial occasion to dispute the antagonism between Reason 
and Revelation. 

CAL. (I, 68): "That Philosophy is not opposed to Theology, 
and is by no means to be rejected as brutish, terrene, impure, 
diabolical, we thus demonstrate: 1. Because the true agrees with 
the true, and does not antagonize it. But what is known by the 


light of nature is no less true than what is revealed in Scripture; 2. 
Because natural and philosophical knowledge has its origin from 
God; 3. Because Philosophy leads us to the knowledge of God." 

As this antagonism was still asserted, the Theologians endeavored 
to prove it to be only apparent. CAL. (I, 74): "We must distin 
guish between a real and an apparent contradiction. The maxims 
of Philosophy and the conclusions of Theology do not really con 
tradict each other, but only appear to do so; for they either do not 
discuss the same subject, or they do not describe the same condi 
tion, mode, or relation of it; as when the philosopher says that the 
essence is multiplied with the multiplication of persons, he declares 
this of finite and created persons, not of divine, of which he knows 
nothing; concerning the latter, the theologian teaches that this is 
not true. When the philosopher says, Of nothing, nothing comes, 
i. e. , by way of generation, he does not contradict the theologian, 
who teaches that by the way of creation something does come from 
nothing. Let Philosophy remain within the limits of its own 
sphere, then it will not contradict Theology, for this treats of a 
different subject. But it is not wonderful that those who con 
found Philosophy with Theology should find contradictions be 
tween them, for they pervert both." QUEN. (I, 43): "We must 
distinguish between contrariety and diversity. Philosophy and 
the principles of Reason are not indeed contrary to Theology, nor 
the latter to the former; but there is a very great difference be 
tween those things that are divinely revealed in Scripture and 
those which are known by the light of nature." As the Theolo 
gians here opposed those who asserted a contradiction between 
Reason and Revelation, they also controverted those who claimed 
too much for Reason, as over against Revelation, by maintaining 
that, because Reason came from God, that which opposes it cannot 
be true. This charge was brought against the Calvinists, Socin- 
ians, and Arminians. It was admitted, in opposition to them, 
that Reason in itself does not contradict Revelation; an inference, 
however, which might have become derogatory to divine truth, 
was obviated by explaining any seeming contradiction on the 
ground that Reason, in such a case, had overstepped its proper 
limits. To the proposition : "In nowise can that be true which is 
repugnant to reason," GRH. (II, 371) replies: "Not human 
Reason, but divine Revelation, is the source of faith, nor are we 
to judge concerning the articles of faith according to the dictation 
of Reason, otherwise we should have no articles of faith, but only 
decisions of Reason. The cogitations and utterances of Reason are 
to be restricted and restrained within the sphere of those things 


which are subject to the decision of Reason, and not to be extended 
to the sphere of those things which are placed entirely beyond the 
reach of Reason; otherwise, if they should be received as absolutely 
universal, and are found opposed to the mysteries of the faith, 
there arise oppositions of science falsely so called. To the objec 
tion : " As a smaller light to a greater, so Reason is not contrary 
to Scripture," GRH. (II, 372) answers: "This contrariety is not 
necessary, but accidental. Reason restricted to its proper sphere 
is not contrary to Scripture, but when it attempts to overleap and 
surpass this, and to pass judgment upon the highest mysteries of 
the faith by the aid of its own principles, then, by accident, it 
comes in conflict with Scripture which informs us in regard to the 
mysteries of faith. Just as the stronger light often reveals those 
things which were hidden in the weaker, so the light of grace, en 
kindled for us in the Word, makes manifest those things which 
were hidden in the light of nature. Just as any one, therefore, 
who would deny those things which are visible in the greater light 
because he had not seen them in the smaller, would fail to ap 
preciate the design and benefit of the smaller, so also he who 
denies or impugns the mysteries of faith revealed in the light of 
grace, on the ground that they are incongruous with Reason and 
the light of nature, fails, at the same time, to make a proper use 
of the office and benefits of Reason and the light of nature. To 
the proposition: "What is true theologically cannot be false 
philosophically, for truth is one," GRH. (ibid.) answers: "In 
themselves considered, there is no contrariety, no contradiction 
between Philosophy and Theology, because whatever things con 
cerning the deepest mystery of the faith Theology propounds from 
Revelation, these a wiser and sincere Philosophy knows are not to 
be discussed and estimated according to the principles of Reason, 
lest there be a confusion of what pertains to entirely distinct de 
partments. So when Theology teaches that Mary brought forth 
and yet remained a virgin, a truly sensible Philosophy does not 
say this assertion is contrary to its conclusion, that it is impossible 
for a virgin to bear a child, because it knows that that conclusion 
must necessarily be received with this limitation, that for a virgin 
to bring forth a child naturally and yet remain a virgin, is impos 
sible. Nor does Theology assert the contrary of this, for it says, 
by supernatural and divine power it came to pass that a virgin brought 
forth a child. But when some philosophizer attempts to make his 
axioms and assertions so general that the highest mysteries of the 
faith are to be adjudged by them, and so invades other spheres, 
then it comes to pass, by way of accident, that what is true theo- 


logically is pronounced false philosophically; i. e., not according 
to the proper use of a sound Philosophy, but according to the 
miserable abuse of it. Thus, justice and the nature of law is 
everywhere the same, i. e. , in its general conception, while, never 
theless, the law of this province is not the same as that of other 
provinces, but each government lives under its own special laws. 
So truth is one in its general conception, while each branch has. its 
own axioms which are not to be dragged before another tribunal, 
but to be left in their own sphere. 

[6] GRH. (II, 372): "Sound reason is not opposed to the 
faith, if we accept as such that which is truly and properly so- 
called, namely that which does not transcend the limits of its 
sphere, and does not arrogate to itself decisions in regard to the 
mysteries of faith; or which, enlightened by the Word, and sancti 
fied by the Holy Spirit, does not follow its own principles in the 
investigation of the mysteries of faith, but the light of the Word 
and the guidance of the Holy Spirit," 

[7] GRH. (II, 372): "The articles of faith are not in and of 
themselves contrary to Reason, but only above Reason. It may 
happen, by accident, that they be contrary to Reason, namely, 
when Reason assumes to decide concerning them upon its own 
principles, and does not follow the light of the Word, but denies 
and assails them. Hence the articles of faith are not contrary to, 
but merely above Reason, since Reason before the Fall was not yet 
corrupt and depraved; but since the Fall they are not only above 
but also contrary to corrupt Reason, for this, in so far as it is thus 
corrupt, cannot control itself, much less should it wish to judge 
articles of faith by its own principles. 

[8] GRH. (II, 371): "We must distinguish between Reason in 
man before and since the Fall. The former, as such, was never op 
posed to divine Revelation; the latter was very frequently thus 
opposed through the influence of corruption." GRH. (II, 362): 
"Natural human Reason since the Fall CD is blind, darkened by the 
mist of error, inwrapped in the shades of ignorance, exposed to 
vanity and error, Rom. 1: 21 ; 1 Cor. 3: 1; Gal. 4: 8; Eph. 4: 17; 
(2) unskilled in perceiving divine mysteries and judging concern 
ing them, Matt. 11: 27; 16: 17; 1 Cor. 2: 14 sq.; (3) opposed to 
them, Rom. 8: 6 ; 1 Cor. 2: 11 sq. ; 3: 18 sq. ; hence to be 
brought into captivity to the obedience of Christ, 2 Cor. 10: 4, 5; 
(4) and we are commanded to beware of its seduction, Col. 2: 8. 
Therefore natural human Reason cannot be a rule for judging in 
matters of faith, and any one pronouncing according to its dictation 
cannot be a judge in theological controversies." QUEX. (I, 43): 


" We must distinguish between Philosophy (i. e., Reason) consid 
ered abstractly and in mew of its essence, and Philosophy considered 
concretely and in view of its existence in a subject corrupted by sin: 
viewed in the former light, it is never opposed to divine truth (for 
the truth is ever presented as uniform and in harmony with the 
nature of the objects successively subordinated to it), but viewed 
in the latter light, in consequence of the ignorance of the intellect 
and the perversion of the will, it is often preposterously applied by 
the philosopher to the purposes of perversion and hollow deception. 
Col. 2: 8." 

[9] GRH. (II, 371) : "We are to make a distinction between the 
reason of man unregenerate and regenerate. The former counts the 
mysteries of faith foolishness, but the latter, in so far as it is such, 
does not object to them. Then only, and only so long, is it regen 
erate as it follows the light of the Word, and judges concerning the 
mysteries of the faith, not by its own principles, but by the Scrip 
tures. We do not reject Reason when regenerated, renewed, illu 
minated by the Word of God, restrained and brought into captivity 
to the obedience of Christ; this does not draw its opinions, in mat 
ters of faith, from its own sources, but from Scripture; this does 
not impugn the articles of belief as does Reason when corrupt, left 
to itself, etc. We must distinguish also between Reason partially 
rectified in this life, and that which is fully rectified in the life to come. 
The former is not yet so completely renewed, illuminated, and 
rectified that it would be impossible for it to oppose the articles 
of faith and impugn them, if it should follow its own guidance. 
Just as there remains in the regenerate a struggle between the flesh 
and the spirit, by which they are tempted to sin, so there remains 
in them a struggle between faith and Reason, in so far as it is not 
yet fully renewed; this, however, excludes all opposition between 
faith and Reason." 

[10] QUEN. (I, 43): "Reason is admissible as an instrument, 
but not as a rule and a judge: the formal principles of Reason no. 
one rejects; its material principles, which constitute its rule for 
judging of mysteries, no wise man accepts. No material principle 
of Reason, as such, but only as it is at the same time a part of 
Revelation, produces faith theologically : that God is, we know from 
nature; we believe it, however, only through the Scriptures. It 
does not follow, because some parts of Scripture are axioms known 
by nature, that therefore Reason is the regulator of theological con 
troversies." Id. (I, 43): "Theology does not condemn the use of 
Reason, but its abuse and its affectation of directorship, or its mag 
isterial use, as normative and decisive in divine things. 


[11] HOLL. (71): "Reason is not a leader, but an humble fol 
lower, of Theology. Hagar serves as the handmaid of her mistress, 
she does not command; when she affects to command she is ban 
ished from the sacred home. 

[12] QUEN. (I, 42): "A distinction must be made between the 
organic or instrumental use of Reason and its principles, when they 
are employed as instruments for the interpretation and exposition 
of the Holy Scriptures, in refuting the arguments of opponents, 
drawn from Nature and Reason, and discussing the signification and 
construction of words, and rhetorical figures and modes of speech; 
and the normal use of philosophical principles, when they are re 
garded as principles by which supernatural doctrines are to be 
tested. The former we admit, the latter we repudiate. The fol 
lowing from QUEN. explains and expands this idea: "It is one 
thing to employ in Theology the principles and axioms of Philos 
ophy for the purpose of illustration, explanation, and as a second 
ary proof, when a matter is decided by the Scriptures; and another 
to employ them for the purpose of deciding and demonstrating, or 
to recognize philosophical principles, or the argumentation based 
upon them, as authoritative in Theology, or by means of them 
to decide matters of faith. The former we do, the latter we do 
not. There must be a distinction made between consequences 
deduced by the aid of reason from the Holy Scriptures, and con 
clusions collected from the sources of nature and reason. The for 
mer must not be confounded with the latter. For it is one thing 
to use legitimate, necessary consequences, and another to use the 
principles of Reason. It is one thing to draw a conclusion and 
deduce consequences from the declarations of Scripture, according 
to logical rules, and another to collect consequences from natural 
principles. A sort of illustration of heavenly matters can be sought 
for among those things which Reason supplies, but a demonstration 
can never be obtained from that source, since it is necessary that 
. this should proceed from the same sphere to which the truth which 
is to be proved belongs, and not from a foreign one. 

This doctrine of the use of reason GRH. develops in a manner 
somewhat different, although substantially the same, as follows, 
under the topic, "The Use of Reason in the Rule of Faith." 
(I, 76, sq. ): (1) The organic use is the following: When our 
reason brings with it, to the work of drawing out the treasures of 
divine wisdom hidden in the Scriptures, knowledge of the gram 
matical force of words, logical observance of order, rhetorical elu 
cidation of figures and acquaintance with the facts of nature, 
derived from the philosophical branches. This use we greatly 


commend, yea, we even declare it to be necessary. (2) As to the 
edificative use of Reason, it is to be thus maintained: There is a cer 
tain natural knowledge of God, Rom. 1 : 19, 20, but this should be 
subordinate to that which is divinely revealed in the Word; so 
that, where there is a disagreement, the former should yield to the 
latter; and where they agree, the former confirms and strengthens 
the latter. In short, as a servant it should, with all due reverence, 
minister to the latter. (3) The destructive use, when legitimate, is 
the following: Errors in doctrine are first to be confuted by argu 
ments drawn from the Holy Scriptures, as the only and proper 
source of Theology, but afterwards philosophical reasons may be 
added, so that it may be shown that the false dogma is repugnant, 
not only to the light of grace, but also to the light of Nature. But 
w r hen the truth of any doctrine has been clearly proved by unan 
swerable scriptural arguments, we should never allow our con 
fidence in it to be shaken by any philosophical reasons, however 
specious they may be. 

Id. (II, 9): "Although some things are taught in Theology, 
which can be learned in some measure by the light of Nature and 
Reason, yet human Reason cannot undertake to become thoroughly 
acquainted with the mysteries of faith, properly so called, by means 
of its own powers; and as to such things as, already known from 
Nature, are taught in Theology, it need not seek for proof elsewhere 
than in their own proper source, the Word of God, which is abun 
dantly able to prove them. ... In this latter manner the Theolo 
gian becomes indebted, for some things, to the philosopher; not, 
indeed, as though he were not able to know them without the aid 
of philosophical principles, from Scripture, as the proper and 
native source of his own science, but because, in the course of the 
investigation, he perceives the truth of the proposition according to 
the principles of philosophy." 

That to which GRH. here merely alludes, the later Theologians, 
such as QUEN., BR., and HOLL., develop at greater length when 
treating of the pure and mixed articles ; by the former of which are 
understood those which contain truths that can be known only by 
Revelation, by the latter such as contain truths which may, at least 
in part, be othenvise known. HOLL. (68): " Mixed articles of 
faith may, in some measure, be know r n by the principles of Phil 
osophy. But the pure articles of faith can be learned and proved 
only from Holy Scripture as the appropriate, fundamental, and 
original source." But the remark of QUEN. is well worthy of 
attention, that (I, 39) "in the mixed articles we grant that philo 
sophical principles may be employed; not, indeed, for the purpose 


of decision or demonstration, but merely for illustration, or as a 
sort of secondary proof of that which has already been decided by 
the Scriptures." And here belongs also the statement of QUEN., 
concerning the formal and material principles of Reason, already 
quoted in the tenth note. This statement of QUEN. conveys the 
same idea as the last, quoted from GRH. , and is designed to prevent 
the assignment of the right of decision in the mixed articles to 
Reason, although it is to have something to do with them. Those 
Theologians who observe the distinction, described in note second, 
between organic and philosophical principles, admit also the use of 
the absolutely universal principles in Theology. It may be ques 
tioned, however, whether these are so accurately distinguished 
from the restrictedly universal principles which are not admissil >le, 
that mistakes may not easily arise. In regard to this BR. (157) 
thus expresses himself: "The material principles of Reason are 
also with propriety employed; however, when they are particular 
or specific, they are subordinated to the universal principle of The 
ology; but the universal principles of Reason may be employed 
only when they are absolutely necessary, namely, when the demon 
stration of the opposite would imply a contradiction. For other 
wise, if the principles of Reason were employed, not absolutely, 
but relatively, or, so to speak, universally and necessarily, it might 
easily happen that a conclusion would be reached repugnant to the 
mysteries or to the articles of faith, even to those of fundamental 


TN treating of the Holy Scriptures as the recorded revelation 
-- of God, we speak 1, of what is understood by the Holy 
Scriptures and Inspiration ; 2, of the Attributes of the Holy 
Scriptures ; 3, of the Canon. 

6. Of the terms, Holy Scriptures and Inspiration. 

God determined that His revelation should be committed to 

writing, so that it might be preserved pure and uncorrupted 

throughout all future time; [1] therefore He has deposited it 

in the Holy Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments. [2] 


These are, therefore, defined to be the written Word of God. 
[3] GRH. : " The Holy Scripture is the Word of God recorded 
in the Holy Scriptures." Between these and the Word of 
God, there is, then, no real distinction, inasmuch as they con 
tain nothing more than this very Word of God, which was 
also orally proclaimed ; [4] and they contain it entire and 
complete, so that, aside from them, no Word of God is any 
where to be found. [5] By being the Word of God, the Holy 
Scriptures are distinguished from all other books, for, in con 
sequence of this, they are, in respect of all their contents, en 
tirely divine ; and this by virtue of the fact that they were 
communicated by inspiration from God to the prophets and 
apostles. [6] God is therefore their author (causa principalis), 
and the prophets and apostles only the instruments (causa in- 
strumcntalis) which God employed in their production. [7] 
We are, therefore, to ascribe the origin of the Holy Scriptures 
to a peculiar agency of God, by means of which He impelled 
the prophets and apostles to the production of the Holy Scrip 
tures, [8] and communicated to them both the matter and the 
form of that which was to be written. [9] This agency of 
God, by means of which the Holy Scriptures were produced, 
we call Inspiration. [10] Bit.: "Divine inspiration was that 
agency by which God supernatu rally communicated to the in 
tellect of those who wrote, not only the correct conception of 
all that was to be written, but also the conception of the words 
themselves and of everything by which they were to be ex 
pressed, and by which He also instigated their will to the act 
of writing." Hence it follows, that everything that is con 
tained in the Holy Scriptures is altogether, and in every par 
ticular, true and free from all error. [11] 

[1] CHMN. (Exam. Cone. Trid. I, 20): "We show . . . . why 
and wherefore the Holy Scriptures were written; because, viz., by 
tradition purity of doctrine was not preserved; but, under shelter 
of that term, many strange and false things were mingled with the 


GRH. (II, 26) : " Why did God desire His Word, at first orally 
promulgated, to be committed to writing? The principal causes 
appear to have been the following: 1. The shortness of human 
life. 2. The great number of men. 3. The unfaithfulness to be 


expected from the guardianship of tradition. 4. The weakness of 
human memory. 5. The stability of heavenly truth, Luke 1: 4. 
6. The wickedness of man. 7. In the New Testament, the per- 
verseness of heretics, which was to be held in check. 

[2] GRH. (II, 13): "The Scriptures have their designation 
from the formal, external act, viz., that of writing, by which the 
Word of God, at first orally promulgated, was, by the command of 
God, recorded. God himself made the grand and majestic begin 
ning of this work when He inscribed His law on Mount Sinai, upon 
tablets of stone, which, on this account, are called the writing of 
God. Ex. 32: 16. To distinguish them from all other writings, 
they are called the Holy Scriptures, an appellation derived from 
Rom. 1: 2 and 2 Tim. 3: 15. The reasons of this designation are 
drawn, 1. From their original efficient cause, their Great Author, 
who is God most holy, yea holiness itself, Is. 6:3; Dan. 9: 24. 

2. From their instrumental cause, viz., holy men, 2 Pet, 1: 21. 

3. From their matter, for they contain holy and divine mysteries, 
precepts for holy living, Ps. 105 : 42. 4. From their design and 
effects, for the Holy Spirit sanctifies men through the reading and 
study of the Scriptures, John 17: 17. 5. From the additional cir 
cumstance that they are widely different from all other writings, 
both ecclesiastical and profane, inasmuch as they are clothed with 
the sublime attribute of canonical authority, to which every believ 
ing and godly mind pays due deference. 

Terms synonymous with Holy Scripture are (Id. II, 16): ypn^fi or 
) pa<t>di, John 7: 38 and 42; Acts 8: 12; Rom. 4:3; ypaqbi ayiai, Rom. 
1:2; iepa -ypd^ara, 2 Tim. 3: 15; ypa<j>i} deoTrvevaTos, v. 16. Titles of 
honor which are attributed to the Word of God in Scripture, are 
the following: miT "D"! My* rofr few. Rom. 3: 2; C"" 6 Uyos rovdeov, 
Heb. 4: 12; p^uara TW C<^r aiuviov, John 6: 68. The whole collection 
is termed rnifini^p Josh. 1:8; HVT 1g)p Is. 34: 16; N"p : D 
Neh. 8: 8. 

[3] GRH. (II, 427) : "The Holy Scriptures are the Word of God 
reduced to writing, according to His will, by the prophets, evange 
lists, and apostles, perfectly and perspicuously setting forth the 
doctrine of the nature and will of God, that men may thereby be 
brought unto eternal life. 

HOLL. (77) : "In the definition of the Holy Scriptures, the Word 
of God signifies formally the purpose of God, or the conception of 
the divine mind, revealed for the salvation of men immediately to 
the prophets and apostles, and mediately, through their ministra 
tions, to the whole race of man." 

For the sake of the greatest possible accuracy, the following dis- 


tinctions are made. GRH. (II, 14): "By the term Scripture, we 
are not to understand so much the external /orm, or sign, i. e., the 
particular letters employed, the art of writing and the expressions 
by which the divine revelation is described, as the matter itself or the 
thing signified, just that which is marked and represented by the 
writing, viz. , the Word of God itself, which instructs us concerning 
the nature and will of God. For, as in all writing, performed by 
an intelligent agent, so also in these prophetic and apostolic writ 
ings, two things are to be considered, viz. , in the first place, the 
letters, syllables, and sentences which are written, and which are 
external symbols signifying and expressing conceptions of the 
mind; and, secondly, those conceptions themselves, which are the 
thing signified, expressed by these external symbols of letters, syl 
lables, and sentences; wherefore in the term Scriptures we embrace 
both of these, and the latter especially. According as the term is 
taken in one or the other of these significations, the relation of the 
Church to the Scriptures is differently expressed. GRH. (II, 15): 
Whence we add, by way of corollary, that certain things are 
predicated of Scripture, with reference to its matter, as that it is more 
ancient than the Church, that it is the very Word of God itself, 
formerly preached orally by the apostles and prophets; and others 
in reference to its form, as that it is, in point of time, later than the 
Church, that at the last day it will perish, while, on the other 
hand, as to its matter, it can never be destroyed or perish, John 
10: 35." 

[4] GRH. (II, 15) : "That there is no real difference between the 
Word of God and the Holy Scriptures, viewed in reference to the 
matter contained in them, is proved, 1. By the subject-matter of 
Scripture. The prophets and apostles wrote that, and nothing else 
than that, which, taught by divine inspiration, they had before 
preached orally, 1 Cor. 15: 1; 2 Cor. 1: 13; Phil. 3: 1; 2 Thess. 2: 
15; 1 John 1:3. 2. By the identity of the spoken and written 
Word. Because the recorded predictions of the Old Testament are 
frequently quoted in the New, with these words : That it might 
be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophets, Matt. 1: 22, 2: 15, 
4: 14, etc. Therefore, what the prophets said or predicted, is the 
same as that which they wrote. 3. By the rule of logic: The 
accident does not alter the essence. It is a mere circumstance in 
regard to the Word of God, whether it be proclaimed orally or com 
mitted to writing. It is one and the same Word of God, whether 
it be presented to us in the form of spoken or of written lan 
guage; since neither the original efficient cause, nor the matter, nor 
the internal form, nor the object, is thereby changed, but only the 


mode of presentation by the use of different organs. 4. By the 
demonstrative particle employed by the apostles. Paul speaks thus 
distinctively of the Mosaic writings and the other like books of th, 
Old and New Testament: l TOVT ton TO jriifui rift irioreoe, this is the 
word of faith, Rom. 10: 8; Peter, in 1 Pet, 1: 25." 

CAL. (I, 528): "The fanatical sects, especially, deny that the 
Scriptures are, strictly speaking, the Word of God, maintaining that 
the internal Word of God alone can properly be called the Word of 
God." (Schwenckfeld, Rathmann, Weigel.)* 

[5] GKH (II, 16): 1. " This distinction of the Papists between 
the Avritten and unwritten Word may, in a certain sense, be admit 
ted, viz., if by the term unwritten Word be understood the divine 
revelation prpclaimed orally by the patriarchs before the Mosaic; 
books were written, but after the publication of the Scripture Canon, 
there can be no unwritten Word of God, .s distinct from Scripture." 

2. " We must distinguish between the leading truths of divine 
revelation which are necessary, essential, etc. , and their more full 
explanation. The prophets and apostles committed to writing the 
principal doctrines of revelation, which are necessary to be known 
by all, and which we do not deny that they explained orally at 
greater length. 

[6] QUEN. (I, 56): "The internal form, or that which gives 
existence to the Scriptures, so that they are indeed the Word of 
God, that, namely, which constitutes them and distinguishes them 
from all other writings, is the inspired sense of Scripture, which, 
in general, is the conception of the divine intellect concerning 
divine mysteries and our salvation, formed from eternity, and re 
vealed in time and communicated in writing to us; or it is divine 
inspiration itself, 2 Tim. 3: 16, by which, namely, it is constituted 
a divine, and is distinguished from a human word." 

[7] QUEN. (1,55): " The efficient or principal cause of Scripture 
is the triune God, 2 Tim. 3: 16 (the Father, Heb. 1:1; the Son, 
John 1: 18, and the Holy Spirit, 2 Sam. 23: 2; 1 Pet. 1: 11; 2 
Pet. 1: 21); 1. By an original decree. 2. By subsequent inspira 
tion, or by ordering that holy men of God should write, and by 
inspiring what was to be written." 

GRH. (II, 26): "The instrumental causes of Holy Scripture 
were holy men of God, 2 Pet. 1: 21, i. e., men peculiarly and im 
mediately elected and called by God for the purpose of committing 
to writing the divine revelations; such were the prophets of the 
Old Testament and the evangelists and apostles of the New Testa- 

* Ample quotations from Schwenckfeld and Weigel in GRH. xiii: 69 sqq. ; for 
fUthmann, see WATCH S Streitigkeiten innerhalb d. Luth. Kirche, iv: 577 sqq. 


ment ; whom, therefore, we properly call the amanuenses of God, the 
hand of Christ, and the scribes or notaries of the Holy Spirit, since 
they neither spoke nor wrote by their own human will, but, borne 
along by the Holy Spirit ^tp6pEvot into rov nvEVfiaro^ ayiov), were acted 
upon, led, driven, inspired, and governed by the Holy Spirit. 
They wrote not as men, but as men of God, /. e. , as servants of 
God and peculiar organs of the Holy Spirit. When, therefore, a 
canonical book is called a book of Moses, the psalms of David, an 
epistle of Paul, etc., this is merely a reference to the agent, not to 
the principal cause." 

QUEN. (I, 55): "God, therefore, alone, if we wish to speak 
accurately, is to be called the author of the Sacred Scriptures; the 
prophets and apostles cannot be called the authors, except by a 
kind of catachresis. To the remark that prophets and apostles 
may be called the amanuenses of God, QUEN. (I: 52) adds: "And 
not as though these divine amanuenses wrote ignorantly and unwill 
ingly, beyond the reach of and contrary to their own will; for they 
wrote cheerfully, willingly and intelligently. They are said to be 
Qepoptvoi, driven, moved, urged on by the Holy Spirit, not as though 
they were in a state of unconsciousness, as the Enthusiasts pre 
tended to be, and as the heathen feigned that there was a certain 
Ei^ovotaaub- in their soothsayers; nor, further, by any means, as 
though the prophets themselves did not understand their own 
prophecies or the things which they wrote, which was formerly 
.... the error of the Montanists; but, because they wrote noth 
ing of their own accord, but everything at the dictation of the Holy 
Spirit." Inasmuch as it holds good of all the sacred writers, that 
they are inspired, those are also accounted such who were not, in 
the strictest sense, apostles. HOLL. (80): " By the name apostles 
we here designate those holy men of God, who, after the birth of 
Christ, wrote the Scriptures of the New Testament; although they 
did not all belong to the college of the apostles, chosen by Christ, before 
His ascension, to teach all nations; but who, after Christ s ascension, 
were numbered with the apostles; such were Matthias (whose 
writings, however, we do not possess) and Paul. But also those; 
apostolic men, nearest to the apostles in office and dignity, are 
called apostles in a wider sense; such are Mark and Luke, the 
evangelists, cf. Rom. 16: 7." 

[8] HOLL. (83): "Inspiration denotes as well the antecedent 
divine instigation or peculiar impulse of the will to engage in writing, 
as the immediate illumination by which the mind of the sacred 
writer is fully enlightened through the supernatural illumination 
of divine grace, and the conceptions of the things to be written art 


themselves suggested immediately by the Holy Spirit. The co-operation 
which here takes place on the part of God is described by QUEN. 
(I, 65) as "a most special and extraordinary concurrence, peculiar to 
the sacred writers," and to be carefully distinguished from "the 
general and common concurrence of God, by virtue of which He is 
present to all believers sincerely meditating upon, and writing 
about, sacred things." HOLL. (83) distinguishes between inspira 
tion and the divine governance. i For the latter merely guards 
against anything being written that is not true, becoming, con 
gruous; whereas the former, through the Holy Spirit dictating, 
suggests the conception of the things to be written. The divine 
governance would warrant the infallibility of the Holy Scriptures, 
but not their inspiration. If the impulse to engage in writing be 
embraced under the term inspiration, then it follows that all the 
Holy Scriptures were written by the command of God, because all 
are inspired. QUEN. (I, 65): "All the canonical books, of both 
the Old and New Testaments, were written by God, who peculiarly 
incited and impelled the sacred writers to engage in the work, and, 
therefore, the Scriptures of the New Testament were recorded 
according to the command and will of God by the evangelists and 

The opposite view is that held by the Papists, who foolishly 
assert that the evangelists and apostles did not write by any divine 
command, but were incidentally urged by some accidental circum 
stance originating elsewhere, or by necessity. It is, indeed, granted 
that we do not possess the proof of an express and outward com 
mand of God in the case of each of the sacred writings, but it is at 
the same time observed that the want of this is not felt where the 
impulse exists. GRH. (II, 30): " In the holy men of God, the ex 
ternal command and the internal impulse correspond to each other. 
For what else is that divine impulse than an internal and secret 
command of precisely the same authority and weight with one that 
is external and manifest?" The latter is proved (by HOLL. (81), 
but also in the same manner by all the earlier writers) to have ex 
isted in the case of all the books of Scripture: "1. By the general 
command of Christ, Matt. 28 : 19. (GRH. (II, 31): Those who 
were commanded to teach all nations, were also commanded to re 
duce their teachings to writing; for they could not teach all nations, 
even of the succeeding age, orally and without writing. ) 2. By 
the impulse of the Holy Spirit, which Peter teaches, 2 Pet. 1 : 21. 
3. By the divine inspiration of the Holy Scriptures, w r hich Paul 
inculcates, 2 Tim. 3 : 16. 4. By the apostolic office, in which these 
holy men became the ambassadors of God, 2 Cor. 5 : 20. Ambas- 


sadors are restricted by the commands of their sovereign. Peter, 
as an ambassador of God, did not undertake to preach to the Gen 
tiles without a divine command; therefore still less would he dare 
to write an epistle unless commanded by God. That, however, 
the external instigations alluded to in the antithesis of the Papists 
are not excluded, GRH. (II, 33) had already stated: "The induce 
ments to engage in writing brought to bear upon the apostles from 
without, do not annul the internal command, but rather confirm it, 
since those circumstances were made to influence the apostles by the won 
derful arrangement of divine Providence, and to them was subsequently 
added the interior impulse of the Holy Spirit, urged on by which 
they applied their hand to the work. 

[9] Hereby an inspiration both of subject-matter and of the 
words is asserted, from which it follows that there is absolutely noth 
ing in the Holy Scriptures that is not inspired. These assertions 
are contained in the following two sentences (of HOLL., 83 and 85) : 

I. The conceptions of all that is contained in the Holy Scrip 
tures were immediately communicated by the Holy Spirit to the 
prophets and apostles. 

. II. All the words, without exception, contained in the Holy 
Manuscript, were dictated by the Holy Spirit to the pen of the 
prophets and apostles." 

These two sentences we illustrate by the following remarks of 
QUEN. and HOLL. In reference to No. I: 1. "In inspiration, we 
recognize a divine assistance and direction, which includes the in 
spiration and dictation of the Holy Spirit; but we deny as insuffi 
cient such a bare divine assistance and direction as would simply 
prevent the sacred writers from departing from the truth in speak 
ing and writing. . . . The Holy Spirit guides others also in writ 
ing, i. e. , so that we observe here a difference in this respect, that 
the Holy Spirit so directed the inspired men, that He at the same 
time suggested and communicated all things to them in so far as 
they are recorded in Scripture." QUEN., I, 68. 

2. Inspiration embraces all that is contained in Scripture, and 
therefore also those things which could have been otherwise known 
to the apostles and prophets, because in this case it was necessary 
that these things should be said just at the particular time when 
the design which God had in view required it, HOLL. (84) : "The 
things which were known to the sacred w r riters may be considered 
either absolutely and in themselves, or relatively, in so far as they 
were to be written by the purpose of God. In the former manner 
they were previously known by the sacred writers, but not in the 
latter. For, although the sacred amanuenses may have known 


certain things, which are described, by them before the act of writ 
ing, yet it was not, in the nature of the case, known to them whether 
God desired these things to be described, or under what circumstance*, 
in what order, and with what words they should be committed to writing." 

3. In like manner inspiration embraces things that are not of a 
spiritual nature. HOLL. (83): " There are contained in Scripture 
historical, chronological, genealogical, astronomical, natural-histor 
ical, and political matters, which, although the knowledge of them 
is not actually necessary to salvation, are nevertheless divinely re 
vealed, because an acquaintance with them assists not a little in the 
interpretation of the Holy Scriptures, and in illustrating the doc 
trines and moral precepts. If only the mysteries of the faith, 
which are contained in the Holy Scriptures, depend upon divine 
inspiration, and all the rest, which may be known by the light of 
nature, depend merely upon the divine direction, then not all of 
Scripture is inspired. But Paul declares that the whole of Scrip 
ture is divinely inspired. Therefore not only the mysteries of the 
faith, but also the remaining truths that may be known by the 
light of nature, which are contained in Scripture, are divinely sug 
gested and inspired;" therefore, 

4. Even apparently unimportant matters are, none the less, 
to be regarded as also inspired. QUEN. (I, 71): "A matter may 
be of small moment, considered in itself and with reference to 
the estimation in which it is held by men, and yet of great import 
ance if we regard the end and wise design which God has in view 
with regard to it. Many things in Scripture seem .to be of small 
account (2 Tim. 4 : 13), in regard to which some suppose that our 
theory of inspiration derogates from the dignity of the Holy Spirit; 
but they are, nevertheless, of great moment, if we regard the end 
had in view (Rom. 15 : 4) and the all-wise design of God, in ac 
cordance with which these things were introduced into the Scrip 
tures." CALIXTUS (in QUEN., I, 69) is a prominent advocate of 
the opposite view, viz. : " Neither is it taught in Scripture, that it 
is necessary to ascribe all the particulars that are contained in it to 
a peculiar divine revelation, but that the principal topics, those 
which the Scripture is mainly and peculiarly designed to teach, 
viz., those which relate to the redemption and salvation of the 
human race, are to be ascribed solely to that particular divine reve 
lation; while in writing concerning other things, known in some 
other way, either by experience or the light of nature, the writers 
were so directed by the divine assistance and by the Holy Spirit, 
that they wrote nothing but what was actual, true, becoming, and 
congruous." The proof of plenary inspiration is drawn 1. From 


2 Tim. 3 : 16. (QuEN. (I, 71): "The word aa may be taken 
distributively, of the single books or parts of Scripture, or collec 
tively for those parts taken as a whole, so that xaaa is the same as 
ox 1 .?; in either .case our opinion remains true, viz. , that all Scripture 
is inspired.") Whence the following argument of CAL. (I, 555): 
If all Scripture be inspired, then there can be nothing in the Holy 
Scriptures that was not divinely suggested and by inspiration com 
municated to those who wrote. For, if even a single particle of 
Scripture were derived from human knowledge and memory, or 
from human revelation, then it could not be asserted that all Scrip 
ture is divinely inspired." 2. From 2 Pet, 1 : 21 (although Peter 
does not allude particularly to writing, but speaking, . . . yet by 
/.aUav both speaking and writing are here implied, and both are 
comprehended under this term, cf. Acts 2 : 31; 3 : 24; Rom. 3 : 19; 
for just as the holy men of God were incited and impelled by the 
Holy Spirit to speak, so were they also incited and impelled by 
Him to write). 3. By the promise of Christ, John 14 : 20. 4. 
From 1 Cor. 2 : 10. We add, from CAL. (I, 556), the following 
additional proofs: " From the originating cause of Scripture, if in 
deed the sacred writers were merely the pen, the hand, or the 
amanuenses of the Holy Spirit; from the nature of the direction of 
the Holy Spirit, which is usually described as such that the Scrip 
tures were written by His direction, wherefore Gregory the Great 
declared that the whole of the Holy Scriptures were nothing more 
nor less than a letter from God the Creator to man His creature; 
from the equal authority of all that is contained in Scripture. For 
not merely those things which directly refer to the subjects of faith 
and salvation are the Word of God, but everything that is found in 
Scripture, Rom. 3 : 2, and, for the same reason that they are called 
by this name, they well deserve to be regarded as the immediate 
Word of God." 

In relation to No. II. , HOLL. (87): "The divine inspiration of 
the words known by common usage, was necessary to the proper 
expression of the mind of the Holy Spirit. For the prophets and 
apostles were not at liberty to clothe the divine meaning in such 
words as they might of their ow r n accord select; but it was their 
duty to adhere to, and depend upon, the oral dictation of the 
Holy Spirit, so that they might commit the Holy Scriptures to 
writing, in the order and connection so graciously and excellently 
given, and in which they would appear in perfect accordance with 
the mind of the Holy Spirit," QUEN. (I, 76) thus accounts for 
the variety of style: "There is a great diversity among the sacred 
writers in regard to style and mode of speaking, which appears to 


arise from the fact that the Holy Spirit accommodated Himself to 
the ordinary mode of speaking, leaving to each one his own man 
ner; yet we do not thereby deny that the Holy Spirit suggested 
the particular words to these individuals." 

CAL., however (I, 574), remarks: "The Holy Spirit, Supreme 
Author of the Holy Scriptures, was not bound to the style of any 
one, but, as a perfectly free teacher of languages, could use, 
through any person soever, the character, style, and mode of 
speech that He chose, and could just as easily propose the divine 
oracles through Jeremiah in a highly ornate style, as through 
Isaiah in one of great simplicity. But He regarded not so much 
the ability of the writers to speak as the character of the subjects 
concerning which He wished them to speak; and, throughout the 
whole, He used His own authority (ain-efowfo) under the guidance of 
His unlimited wisdom. So that we need not wonder that the same 
Spirit employed diversities of style .... The cause of this di 
versity of style is the fact that the Holy Spirit gave to each one 
to speak as He pleased." Yet CAL. adds also: "Although the 
style of Scripture is plain and very well suited, not only to the 
genius of the readers and hearers, but also to the old and custom 
ary style of speech of the sacred writers, yet there may be recog 
nized in it a condencension, cvyKardpaai^ of the Holy Spirit; because 
He accommodated Himself sometimes to the ordinary method of 
speaking, leaving to the writers their own style of speech; but it 
must not be denied that the Holy Spirit breathed into them the 
words. " The inspiration of the Hebrew vowel-points was included 
in this theory; conf. GRH. S argument ex absurdo (II, 272): "It 
would follow that the Scriptures were not communicated by God 
through the prophets, so far as the single words are concerned, 
since without the vowel-points the w r ords cannot possibly exist; 
therefore not all Scripture is inspired." From the theory of 
verbal inspiration there arose also the assertion : The style of the 
New Testament is free from every trace of barbarism and from 
solecisms." (QuEN., I, 82. ) The proof of verbal inspiration was 
drawn, 1. From 2 Tim. 3: 16. (All Scripture is wholly inspired; 
not only its meaning, or the thing signified, but also the words, 
as signs of things, were divinely inspired. Therefore, etc., etc. 
(HoLL., 85.)) 2. From 1 Cor. 2: 13; Ex. 34: 27, 28; Matt. 5: 18. 

[10] Inspiration is, therefore, a divine agency employed in con 
nection with the recording of the truth, and, in several respects, it 
differs from Revelation. 

If we consider the latter as embracing the whole compass of 
Christian faith, it owes its very existence to inspiration. CAL. (I, 


280) : " Divine inspiration may be regarded either as the source and 
efficient cause of revelation, in which sense it is an act of God as inspir 
ing, or as the form which revelation assumes, or the revealed Word. 
But if revelation be taken in its etymological sense, as the commu 
nication of that which was before unknown, then it differs from 
inspiration in the following respects: 1. The latter may contain also 
that which was before known, merely specifying the particular time 
and manner in which it is to be consummated, and, 2. The subject- 
matter of revelation may be communicated to man in various ways, 
but that of inspiration only by an immediate divine suggestion. 
QUEN. (I, 68): "Revelation, formally and etymologically viewed, is 
the manifestation of things unknown and hidden, and can be made 
in many and various ways, viz. , by outward speech, or by dreams 
and visions. Inspiration is that act of the Holy Spirit by which an 
actual knowledge of things is supernaturally conveyed to an intel 
ligent creature, or it is an internal suggestion or infusion of concep 
tions, whether the things conceived were previously known to the 
writer or not. The former could precede the commitment to writ 
ing; the latter was always associated with it and influenced the 
writing itself. Add to this the remarks : With all this I do not 
deny that divine inspiration itself may be called revelation, in a 
certain sense; in so far, namely, as it is a manifestation of certain 
circumstances, as also of the order and manner in which certain 
things are to be written. (We must distinguish between divine 
revelation when by it the subject-matter itself is made known, and 
when it refers to the peculiar circumstances and time and manner 
and order in which the subject-matter is to be reduced to writing." 
(I, 72)) "And when, also, revelation concurs and coincides with 
divine inspiration, when, viz., the divine mysteries are revealed by 
inspiration and inspired by revelation, in the very act of writing. 
Thus CALOVIUS very properly remarks : That all the particulars 
contained in the Holy Scriptures are not, indeed, to be regarded as 
having been received by a peculiar and new revelation, but by the 
special dictation, inspiration, and suggestion of the Holy Spirit. 

[11] HOLL. (88): "Divine inspiration, by which the subject- 
matter and the words to be spoken, as well as those to be written, 
were immediately suggested to the prophets and apostles by the 
Holy Spirit, preserved them free from all error, as well in the 
preaching as in the writing of the divine Word. 

CAL. (I, 551): "No error, even in unimportant matters, no 
defect of memory, not to say untruth, can have any place in all 
the Holy Scriptures." 

QUEN. (I, 80): " We are to distinguish between the conversation 


of the apostles and their preaching and writing; or between infirmi 
ties in conduct and errors in doctrine. In doctrine the apostles 
never could err, after receiving the gift of the Holy Spirit, . . . 
but in their conduct and outward conversation they were not sin 
less, but, in consequence of innate original corruption, were still 
subject to infirmities and failings." 

The more accurate development of the doctrine of inspiration 
begins with GRH. HUT. (Loci Theologici (30)) still thus briefly 
expresses himself in regard to it: "Although God did not directly 
write the Scriptures, but used prophets and apostles as His pen and 
instrument, yet the Scripture is not, on that account, of any the 
less authority. For it is God, and indeed God alone, who inspired 
the prophets and apostles, not only as they spoke, but also as 
they wrote; and He made use of their lips, their tongues, their 
hands, their pen. Therefore, or in this respect, the Scriptures, as 
they are, were written by God Himself. For the prophets and 
apostles were merely instruments. " This contains, however, essen 
tially everything that we have adduced above from the later theo 
logians. It was mainly the controversy with the Roman Catholics 
that gave occasion for detailed specifications; for these very well 
knew that they would rob the Protestant Church of all its weapons, 
without thereby injuring themselves, if they could cast suspicion 
upon the true inspiration of the Holy Scriptures. Such dis 
criminations were also called forth in part by the fanatics, who 
treated the written Word of God with little respect; partly by the 
Socinians and Arminians, who adhered to a merely partial inspira 
tion of the Scriptures. In opposition to these, it became of great 
importance to the Lutheran theologians to defend with all earnest 
ness the doctrine of the inspiration, not only of the matter, but of 
the very words. 

7. The Attributes of the Holy Scriptures. 

If- the Holy Scriptures are really the Word of God, then it 
follows that we are bound to yield to them implicit faith and 
obedience. As they are the only source of truth, they must 
contain this entirely and so clearly that we can really learn it 
from them. And they are, finally, as the Word of God, the 
only means by which we can attain unto faith, and, therefore, 
must also be able to awaken this faith in us. We ascribe to 
them, therefore, the attributes of authority, perfection or suffi 
ciency, perspicuity and efficacy. [1] 


8. (1.) Authority. 

BR.: "The authority of the Holy Scriptures is the manifest 
dignity that inclines the human understanding to assent to 
their instructions, and the will to yield obedience to their 
commands." We believe what the Holy Scriptures declare, 
simply because they declare it, and it is they that beget faith 
in us, and they are the only source from which we derive our 
faith. They are, at the same time, the only inspired book, 
and by this they are distinguished from all other writings. 
It is therefore only from them that we can learn what is true 
in divine things ; and they furnish the means by which we can 
everywhere distinguish between truth and error. The author 
ity of Holy Scripture is, accordingly, divided into: "(a) Caus 
ative authority, by which the Scriptures create and confirm in 
the mind of man assent to the truths to be believed. (6) Nor 
mative or canonical authority, by which authentic Scripture is 
distinguished from other writings and versions, and that which 
is true from that which is false." [2] HOLL. (104.) 

(a) Causative Authority. This rests upon the fact, that we 
acknowledge God as the author of the Holy Scriptures, [3] 
and this we prove by the inspiration of the Holy Scriptures. 
[4] The proofs of inspiration are, it is true, derived in the 
first instance only from the Holy Scriptures themselves, and 
already presuppose faith in the Holy Scriptures themselves, on 
the part of those who admit them as evidence. But, for the 
Church and her members, there is no need of proof for the in 
spiration of Scripture, for her very existence depends upon 
this faith, and this faith precedes all proofs ; [5] without this 
no article of faith could be based upon the Holy Scriptures. 
[6] Therefore, the proof that the Holy Scriptures are in 
spired, or, what amounts to the same thing, that they are of 
divine origin, and consequently possess full authority in mat 
ters of faith, is required only for those who are yet without 
the Church, or who, if within her pale, are not confirmed in 
the faith. But it lies in the nature of the case, that no proof 
can be given to those, which they cannot, in an unbelieving 
frame of mind, evade ; for the only absolutely stringent proof 
lies in the fact, that the Holy Spirit bears witness in the heart 
of each individual, and thus convinces him of the divinity of 


the Word of God, by the mighty influence which it exerts 
upon him ; [7] but that this may be the case, it is necessary 
that the individual do not resist the drawings of the Holy 
Spirit, and before this takes place the testimony of the Holy 
Spirit can have no probative power for him. [8] To this ex 
perience, therefore, the individual is referred, and through it 
alone will he attain to absolute certainty in regard to the di 
vinity of the Holy Scriptures. All other so-called proofs are 
rather to be considered as such evidences for the divinity of 
the Holy Scriptures as can make this probable to the individ 
ual, and invite him to give himself up to the influence of the 
Holy Spirit, in order to acquire for himself the same exper 
ience which the Church has gained. [9] Such evidences are 
of two kinds. The Holy Scriptures themselves testify in re 
gard to this divinity, by their internal excellence and dignity 
(npiTf/pia interna, internal proofs); and the effects which the Holy 
Scriptures have produced upon. others, testify also to the same 
<(itpiT4pia externa, external proofs). [10] These evidences the 
Church holds out to each individual, and seeks by their means 
to induce him to yield his heart to the influence of the Holy 
Spirit, who will produce in him the full conviction of the di 
vinity of the Holy Scriptures. [11] 

(b) Normative or Canonical Authority. HOLL. (125): "The 
canonical authority of Scripture is its supreme dignity, by 
which, in virtue of its meaning, as well as of its divinely in 
spired style, it is the infallible and sufficient rule, by which 
all that is to be believed and done by man in order to secure 
eternal salvation, must be examined, all controversies in re 
gard to matters of faith decided, and all other writings ad 
judged." [12] Accordingly, we must acknowledge the Holy 
Scriptures as the only rule and guide of our life, by which 
alone all controversies in regard to divine things must be set 
tled, [13] so that in no case is the addition of any other au 
thority required, by which they may be decided. [14] But 
if the Holy Scriptures are thus the only judge of controversies, 
the question arises : How is this decision to be obtained from 
them? It lies in the nature of the case, that not every one 
can accomplish this with equal success, for certain previous 
conditions are required for this purpose, without which the 


Holy Scriptures cannot be understood and expounded ; and 
besides, necessary ecclesiastical order demands that, at least for 
the public investigation and announcement of the decisions 
contained in the Holy Scriptures, there should be a regular 
calling. Hence, it pre-eminently belongs to the Church pub 
licly to make known, by means of her representatives (the 
clergy), the decision discovered in the Holy Scriptures, in re 
ference to a contested point, [15] whence, however, it does not 
yet follow, that every private individual within the pale of the 
Church does not possess the right of private judgment. [16] 
If then, in any given case, the adjustment of a controversy be 
not attained, the fault lies not in the Holy Scriptures, but in 
the fact that the Holy Scriptures were not properly interpreted, 
or the proper interpretation was not adopted. [17] But, in 
every case, when such a controversy is to be decided, resort 
must be had to the original text of the Holy Scriptures ; for, 
although a good translation may enable us to secure the testi 
mony of the Holy Spirit, it is never so accurate, that we dare 
employ it in doubtful cases, in which often everything de 
pends upon the most accurate investigation of the single words 
of the original text. [18] 

[1] The attributes are variously enumerated by the early divines. 
CAL. and QUEN. add to those we have mentioned, infallible truth, the 
power of interpreting itself, normative and judicial authority, which are 
again by others incorporated in those we have mentioned. 

Some theologians also add the following as secondary attributes : 
(1) " Necessity ; or, that it was necessary for the Word of God to be 
committed to writing, in order to preserve the purity of the 
heavenly doctrine. (2) Integrity and perpetuity ; or, that the Holy 
Scriptures have been preserved entire, and will be thus perpetually 
preserved. (3) Purity and imcorrupted state of its sources; or, that 
the Hebrew text in the Old Testament, and the Greek in the New, 
have not suffered, in all copies, any corruption, either through 
malice or carelessness, but have been preserved by Divine Provi 
dence, free from all corruption. (4) Authentic dignity ; or, that the 
Hebrew text alone of the Old Testament, and the Greek of the 
New, is to be regarded as authentic, nor is any version to be 
counted worthy of such supreme authority. (5) The liberty of all 
to read for themselves." CAL., I, 450. 

[2] BR. (82): "The authority of Scripture, so far as it regards 


the assent that is to be yielded to its declarations, may be viewed 
in a two-fold light: first, in a strict sense, in order to cause assent to the 
things that are to be believed, which right the Scriptures hold because 
they are the source of knowledge and the formal object of faith and 
revealed theology; secondly, in order to distinguish by the inspired 
Scriptures themselves, both the true Scriptures and those other teachings, 
which relate to matters of faith and practice; and this right they 
hold, inasmuch as they are canonical, or the rule and guide whereby 
to distinguish truth from falsehood. . . . For, although the author 
ity of Scripture is one and the same, based upon the veracity of 
God and the dependence of the Scriptures upon God, through 
which it is appointed, both in a formal sense to produce faith and 
in a normal sense to examine and decide between certain Scriptures 
and other teachings; and as, further, the Scriptures are to be em 
ployed somewhat differently for the formal purpose of causing 
assent to the faith, and for the normal purpose of distinguishing 
truth from falsehood; thus, also, we must by all means treat dis 
tinctly of both these methods in discussing the authority of Scrip 
ture." HOLL. (105): "In the former method, they (the Holy 
Scriptures) are employed in every language for producing faith in 
the mind of an unbelieving man, and for confirming it in the mind 
of a believer; in which respect this authority is called causative or 
promotive of faith; in the latter method, they are employed only in 
the original text, to distinguish from the actually inspired Scrip 
ture the versions of the Hebrew and Greek originals, the Symbolical 
Books, and all writings that treat of matters of faith and practice. 

[3] BR. (80): "The authority of Scripture, viewed in itself 
and absolutely, or with reference to its contents, depends upon 
God, the sole Author of Scripture, and results from His veracity 
and great and infinite power." GRH. (II, 36): "Inasmuch, 
then, as the Holy Scriptures have God for their author, by whose 
immediate inspiration the prophets, evangelists, and apostles 
wrote, therefore they also possess divine authority; because they 
are inspired, they are in like manner self-commendatory, winning 
faith by virtue of their own inherent excellence." 

[4] BR. (81): "So far as we are concerned, or that we may be 
convinced that the Holy Scriptures are worthy to receive faith 
and obedience, not only these perfections of God must be known, 
but also the dependence of Scripture upon God, or its inspiration 
by Him." Our conviction, however, rests upon the two theses: 
" (1) Whatsoever Scripture is recorded by divine inspiration, that 
is certainly and infallibly true. (2) The Holy Scriptures were 
recorded by divine inspiration. 


[5] GRH. (I, 9): "Those who are within the Church do not in 
quire about the authority of Scripture, for this is their starting- 
point. How can they be true disciples of Christ if they pretend 
to call in question the doctrine of Christ ? How can they be true 
members of the Church if they are in doubt concerning the founda 
tion of the Church ? How can they wish to prove that to them 
selves which they always employ to prove other things? How 
can they doubt concerning that whose efficacy they have experi 
enced in their own hearts? The Holy Spirit testifies in their 
hearts that the Spirit is truth, i. e., that the doctrine derived from 
the Holy Spirit is absolute truth. 

[6] GRH. therefore very properly observes, that the doctrine of 
the authority of Scripture is no article of faith, but rather the 
fountain-head of the articles of faith. (I, 11): "The doctrine 
concerning the Canon is, properly speaking, not an article of faith, 
since Moses, the prophets, evangelists, and apostles did not fabri 
cate in their writings a new article of faith superadded to the 
former, which they taught orally." 

[7] GRH. (II, 37): "The first (testimony) is the internal wit 
ness of the Holy Spirit, who, as He bears witness to the spirit 
of believers that they are the sons of God, Rom. 8 : 16, so, 
also, efficaciously convinces them, that in the Scriptures the 
voice of their Heavenly Father is contained; and<jod is the only 
fit and authentic witness. To this testimony belongs the lively 
sense of the godly in daily prayer and in the exercises of penitence 
and faith, the grace of consoling and strengthening the mind 
against all kinds of adversities, temptations, persecutions, etc., 
etc., which the godly daily experience in reading and meditating 
upon Scripture." 

QUEN. (I, 97): "The ultimate reason by and through which 
we are led to believe with a divine and unshaken faith that God s 
Word is God s Word, is the intrinsic power and efficacy of that 
Word itself, and the testimony and seal of the Holy Spirit, speak 
ing in and through Scripture. Because the bestowment of faith, 
not only that by which we believe in the articles, but even that by 
which we believe in the Scriptures, that exhibit and propose the 
articles, is a work that emanates from the Holy Spirit, or the 
Supreme Cause." 

HOLL. (116): " By the internal testimony of the Holy Spirit, is 
here understood the supernatural act of the Holy Spirit through 
the Word of God, attentively read or heard (His own divine power 
being communicated to the Holy Scriptures), moving, opening, 
illuminating the heart of man, and inciting it to obedience unto 


the faith; so that man, thus illuminated by internal, spiritual 
influences, clearly perceives that the word proposed to him has 
indeed proceeded from God, and thus gives it unyielding assent." 
The Scripture proof for the testimony of the Holy Spirit is de 
duced from 1 John 5: 6; 1 Thess. 1: 5, 6; 2: 13. To the common 
objection, that Theology here reasons in a circle, the following 
answer is returned, HOLL. (119): " If I inquire, says the ob 
jector, How do you knoAv that the Scriptures are divine? the 
Lutherans answer: Because the Holy Spirit in each one testifies 
and confirms this by the Scripture. If I ask again: How do 
you prove that this Holy Spirit is divine? the same persons 
will reply: Because the Scriptures testify that He is divine, and 
His testimony infallible. To all of which we reply: We must 
distinguish between a sophistical circle and a demonstrative retro 
gression. In reasoning in a circle, one unknown thing is em 
ployed to prove another equally unknown; but in a demonstrative 
retrogression, we proceed from confused knowledge to that which 
is distinct. For the divine dignity of Scripture is proved by the 
supernatural effect of the Holy Spirit operating efficaciously 
through the Scriptures, illuminating, converting, regenerating, re 
newing. But, if you ask whether that spirit is divine or malignant, 
then we reason from the effect, which is divine and salutary, that 
the Spirit, who bears witness within concerning the divine origin 
of the Holy Scriptures, is divine, most holy, and excellent." 
QUEX. (I, 101) further adds: "The Papists, therefore, wrongly 
accuse us of reasoning in a circle, when we prove the Holy 
Scriptures from the testimony of the Holy Spirit, and the testi 
mony of the Holy Spirit from the Holy Scriptures. Else would 
it be also reasoning in a circle when Moses and the prophets 
testify concerning Christ, and Christ concerning Moses and the 
prophets; or, when John the Baptist testifies that Christ is the 
Messiah, and again Christ that John the Baptist is a prophet." 

[8] Therefore GRH. (II, 36) distinguishes, among those who 
stand without the pale of the Church, two classes: "Some are 
curable, who come with minds tempered and desirous of learning; 
others are incurable, who come with minds unyielding and obstinate, 
and who contumaciously resist the truth, Acts 13: 46; 19: 28. The 
incurable, just as those who are past bodily recovery, are to be for 
saken to their fate, Titus 3 : 10. The same applies to those who 
are within the pale of the Church, if, in the midst of temptation, 
they begin to doubt the authority of the Scripture." 

[9] QUEN. (I, 98): " Those arguments both of an internal and 
external nature, by which we are led to the belief of the authority 


of Scripture make the inspiration of Scripture probable, and pro 
duce a certainty not merely conjectural but moral, so that to call it 
in question were the work of a fool; but they do not make the 
divinity of Scripture infallible, and place it beyond all doubt, nor 
do they produce within the mind an immovable conviction, /. e. , 
they beget not a divine, but merely a human faith, not an unshaken 
certainty, but a credibility, or a very probable opinion." 

[10] GRH. (II, 37): "I. The internal criteria inherent in the 
Scriptures themselves, some of which are found in the causes, others 
in the effects, some in the subject-matter, others in incidental cir 
cumstances. Such criteria are antiquity, the majesty of the subjects 
discussed, peculiarity of style, harmony of all parts, dignity of 
the predictions concerning future events, the reality of their fulfil 
ment, divinity of the miracles by which their doctrine is confirmed, 
the violence of the diabolical opposition to it, the efficacy of Scrip 
ture itself in persuading and moving to action. II. The external 
testimonies (which can be drawn from all classes of men), among 
which is pre-eminent the testimony of the Church, to which \ve 
may add that of the martyrs, who sealed the doctrine taught in 
Scripture with their blood, and also, the punishment of blasphemers 
and persecutors, who contumaciously opposed this doctrine." 

The later divines present these proofs in substantially the same 
manner as HOLL. (100): "The external criteria (which are derived, 
not from Scripture, but from other sources) are (a) the antiquity 
of Scripture; (/>) the singular clearness of the sacred writers, their 
desire after knowledge and truth; (r) the splendor of the miracles 
by which the heavenly doctrine is confirmed; (d~) the harmonious 
testimony of the Church, spread over the whole earth, to the 
divinity of the Holy Scriptures; (c) the constancy of the martyrs; 
(/) the testimony of other nations to the doctrine contained in the 
Holy Scriptures; (g) the successful and rapid propagation of the 
Christian doctrine through the whole world, and its wonderful 
preservation during so many persecutions; (A) the extremely severe 
punishments inflicted upon the despisers and persecutors of the 
Divine Word." In reference to these, HOLL. remarks (109) : "We 
premise these external criteria, in order to prepare the minds of the 
unbelieving for reading and meditating upon the Holy Scriptures 
with interest and desire ... it is necessary that first of all unbe 
lievers be led by external criteria to regard it as not improbable 
that the Holy Scriptures had their origin in God, and therefore 
begin to respect, read, and meditate upon them." 

The internal criteria (" drawn from the intrinsic nature and attri 
butes of Scripture," BR.) are: "(a) the majesty of God, testifying 


concerning Himself in the Holy Scriptures; {&) the simplicity and 
dignity of the biblical style; (c) the sublimity of the divine 
mysteries which the Scriptures reveal; (d) the truth of all biblical 
assertions; () the sanctity of the precepts contained in the Holy 
Scriptures; (/) the sufficiency of the Holy Scriptures to salvation." 
In regard to these, HOLL. further adds: "These internal criteria, 
taken together and conjointly, constitute a stronger argument than 
if taken successively or singly. 

[11] GRH. (I, 9): "Although the testimony of the Holy Spirit 
is of the very highest importance, yet we are not to make a begin 
ning with it in the conversion of such men, i. e. , they are not to be 
commanded to wait until the Holy Spirit bears witness immediately 
in their hearts concerning the authority of Scripture, but they are to 
be directed to the testimony of the Church, which, in this respect, 
performs the part of a preceptor to the unbelieving disciple. Just 
as, therefore, it is necessary for a pupil first to believe, until he 
afterwards becomes able to form an independent judgment concern 
ing the things taught, so it is necessary for an unbeliever to yield 
assent to the testimony of the Church, which is the first step 
towards ascertaining the authority of Scripture; then the internal 
criteria of antiquity, prophecies, etc., are to be added. Yet the 
testimony of the Church alone is not sufficient to convince an un 
believer of the divine authority of the Scriptures, since he may, 
perhaps, still be in doubt whether this be really the true Church of 
God. Wherefore, as it is the duty of the preceptor, not only to 
propose precepts, but also to corroborate their truth; so it is not 
sufficient for the Church to declare that these are divine Scriptures, 
unless it accompany its declaration with reasons. Then at length 
it may follow that the Holy Spirit shall bear testimony in the heart 
of the inquirer, and prove the truth of His words. 

The testimony of the Church varies in weight, according as it is 
derived from the earlier or from the later Church. GRH. (I, 10): 
"The primitive Church, that heard the apostles themselves, excelled 
in being the original recipients of the sacred books, and in being fav 
ored with the living instruction of the apostles and with a number of 
miracles to prove the authority of the canon; the next age, in which 
the autographs of the apostles were still preserved, excelled the 
former in the more complete fulfilment of New Testament prophe 
cies, in the abundance of versions of both Testaments into vari 
ous languages, and in the testimony concerning the Holy Scrip 
tures extracted from various writings of believers; and it excelled 
the age succeeding it, by possessing the autographs of the evange 
lists and apostles, the voice of the ancient Church, and a number 


of miracles. The latest age of the Church excels both the others 
(although the autographs of the apostles are no more), at least in 
the more perfect fulfilment of prophecy. 

Occasion is here taken to protest against the Romish axiom, All 
the authority of Scripture depends upon the Church," and to guard 
against such an interpretation being put upon what has been above 
stated. HOLL. ( 120) : The authority of the Holy Scriptures neither 
depends upon the Church for the divine, pre-eminent dignity in 
which its power lies; nor, in order that it may be known, does it 
need the testimony of the Church either, as the grand and ultimate 
source of proof for the divine authority of Scripture, or as the 
only and absolutely necessary argument." GRH. (II, 38) remarks 
( 1 ) ; " It is one thing for the Church to bear witness to the Scrip 
tures and their authority ministerially, and another to confer upon 
Scripture its authority dictatorially and judicially. From the min 
istry and testimony of the Church, we are led to acknowledge the 
authority of Scripture, but from this it by no means follows that 
the authority of Scripture, either in itself, or in respect to us, de 
pends alone upon the authority of the Church; because, when we 
have once learned that the Scriptures are divine and contain the 
Word of God, we no longer believe the Scriptures on account of the 
Church, but on account of themselves; because, viz., they are the 
voice of God, which is avraMjOeia, and hence, din-fa UJTOC, which we 
know must be believed on its own account and immediately. (2) 
It is one thing for us to become acquainted with the authority of 
the Scriptures by the testimony of the Church, and another, for 
the whole authority of the Scripture, so far as we are concerned, to 
depend solely upon the testimony of the Church. The former we 
concede, the latter we deny; because, beside the testimony of the 
Church, we have two other classes of evidence for the authority of 
Scripture, and in the same class, that embraces the testimony of the 
Church, other external evidences derived from all kinds of men may 
be adduced; yet, at the same time, we do not deny, that the testi 
mony of the Church is to be preferred to all others in this class. (3) 
It is one thing to speak of the testimony of the primitive Church, 
which received the autograph of the sacred books from the apostles, 
and handed down a credible testimony concerning them to poster 
ity, and another, to speak of the authority of the present Church." 

QUEN. (I, 93) notices, in addition, the objection ef the Papists, 
"The Church is more ancient than the Scriptures; therefore, it has 
greater authority;" to which he replies: "We must make a dis 
tinction between the Word of God contained in the Scriptures, and 
the act of writing itself, or, between the substance of Scripture, 


which is the Word of God, and its accident, which is the writing 
of it. The Church is prior to the Scriptures, if you regard the 
mere act of writing; but it is not prior to the Word of God itself, by 
means of which the Church itself was collected. Surely the Scrip 
tures, or the Word of God, is the foundation of the Church, Eph. 
2: 20; but the foundation is older than the building." 

[12] HOLL. (125) : " The Holy Scriptures exercise their highest 
canonical authority, when a controversy arises concerning the truth 
of a doctrine, and the truth is to be confirmed and falsehood to be 
confuted; but the Scriptures exert their faith-producing authority, 
as often as the unbelieving are to be converted to the Christian 
faith, or the weak faith of believers is to be strengthened." 

[13] GRH. (I, 28): "The Holy Scriptures are the rule of our 
faith and life; therefore, also, the judge of theological controversies." 
(I, 30): "Add to this, that all the qualities of a rule, properly so 
called, belong to Scripture. For a rule should be certain, fixed, 
invariable, fundamental, suited to meet every case, always self- 
consistent. But these qualities belong neither to tradition, nor to the 
teachings of human reason, nor to the writings of the fathers, nor to 
the Pope, nor to the decrees of councils, but to the Holy Scriptures 
alone." FORM. CONC. (Preface, 1) : "We teach, that the only rulo 
according to which all doctrines and all teachers are to be estimated 
and judged, is none other than the prophetic and apostolic writings 
of the Old and New Testaments. (Compare also the remarks of 
QUEN. (I, 150): "When we say that the Holy Scriptures are the 
only rule of faith and of life conformed to the will of God, we do not 
speak of every age of the Church, for there was a time when the 
Church was instituted and governed without the written Word of 
God, the time, viz., before Moses; but we refer to that age in which 
the first written canon was prepared, and especially to the New 
Testament times, in which all things necessary to faith and the 
worship of God have been written down, and with great care col 
lected into the canon. ) 

HOLL. (125): "As a rule of knowledge, it performs a two-fold 
function, directive and corrective. For it directs the thoughts of the 
human mind, so that they abide within the bounds of truth; and 
it corrects errors, inasmuch as it is properly its own rule of right 
and wrong. Wherefore, the Holy Scriptures are called the Canon, 
or rule, partly on account of their directive character, because the 
true faith and pure morals are learned from them; partly on ac 
count of their corrective character, since controversies in regard to 
the faith are decided by them, and whatever is right and godly is 
retained, and what is erroneous and ungodly is rejected. 


Others, as CAL. and QUEN. , express this by a separate attribute, 
viz., the normative and judicial authority. CAL. (I, 474): "The 
Holy Scriptures are a rule, according to which all controversies in 
regard to faith or life in the Church should, and can be, decided 
(Ps. 19: 7; Gal. 6: 16; Phil. 3: 16); and as a rule they are not 
partial, but complete and adequate, because, beside the Scriptures, 
no other infallible rule in matters of faith can be given. All 
others beside the Word of God are fallible; and on this account we 
are referred to the Holy Scriptures as the only rule (Deut. 4:2-, 
12: 28; Josh. 23: 6; Is. 8: 20; Luke 16: 29; 2 Pet. 1: 19); to 
which, alone, Christ and the apostles referred as a rule (Matt. 4: 
4; 22:29,31; Mark 9: 12; John 5: 45; Acts 3: 20; 13:33; 18:28; 
26: 22)." 

[14] Hence, the two corollaries of QUEN. (I, 158, 167): " (1) 
It is therefore not necessary that there should be in the Church a 
supreme, regularly appointed and universal judge, who, seated 
upon a visible throne, is peremptorily to decide all strifes and 
controversies that arise among Christians concerning faith and re 
ligion, and orally and specifically to pronounce sentence in regard 
to them. We cannot acknowledge as such a judge either the 
Roman pontiff, or the fathers, or councils. (2) Nor is the de 
cision concerning the mysteries and controversies of the faith to be 
granted to human reason, nor to an internal instinct or secret spirit. y 

[15] CHMN. (Trid.): "The Church has the right and liberty of 
deciding." GRH. (II, 359): "If the Church is the pillar and 
the ground of the truth, and we are commanded to hear it 
(! Tim. 3: 15; Matt. 18: 17), then all decisions in matters of 
faith belong to her. 

But the right which is hereby ascribed to the Church is carefully 
distinguished from that which belongs to the Holy Scriptures. 
This is usually done in the following manner: (1) The principal 
judge is the Holy Spirit; the instrumental judge, the Holy Scrip 
tures; the ministerial (inferior) judge, the clergy. In regard to 
the latter, however ( whose duty it is to seek for the decision of 
the Supreme Judge as laid down in Scripture, and from this to 
teach what is to be done, to interpret this, and decide in accord 
ance with it"), it is maintained that this judge should not pro 
nounce sentence according to his own will, but according to the 
rule laid down by the Supreme Judge, i. e., according to- the 
Holy Scriptures, which we therefore call the decision of the Su 
preme Judge, the rule of the inferior judge, and the directive 
judge (GRH., II., 366). 

And QUEN. (I, 150): "An inferior decision, viz., of a teacher 


of the Church, is nothing else than the interpretation, declaration, 
or annunciation of a divine, decisive, and definitive judgment, and 
its application to particular persons and things." Whence it 
further follows : We are able to decide by the decision of an 
inferior judge, not absolutely, but if he pronounce according to 
the prescriptions of the divine law or the Scriptures, and in so far 
as he shows that he decides according to the Word of God. (Deut. 
17: 10.) Wherefore, we may appeal from this inferior judge to the 
Supreme, but not conversely, from the Supreme to the inferior. The 
subordinate judge is, therefore, not absolute, but restricted and 
bound by the decisions of the Supreme Judge as recorded in Scrip 
ture. According to this distinction, the Holy Scriptures are called 
the judging Judge, or the Judge ad quern (to whom there is appeal), 
and the Church the Judge to be judged, or the Judge a quo (from 
whom there is an appeal)." 

The Church is, therefore, it is true, a visible judge, but merely 
discretive, who, in the exercise of sound judgment, distinguishes 
truth from falsehood. She is, however, "not a judge, specially and 
strictly so called, viz., authoritative and decisive, pronouncing sentence 
authoritatively, and by virtue of the authority belonging to her, 
compelling the disputants to acquiesce in the whole opinion she 
may propose without further investigation. " (HoLL., 146.) 

[16] GRH. (II, 359): "Whatever pertains to a spiritual per 
son, may be regarded as belonging to all children and members of 
the Church. The reason of this is, that by spiritual person, we 
understand not merely the clergy, according to the nomenclature 
of the Papists, but all the children of the Church, who are con 
trolled by the Spirit of God. Rom. 8: 9. For he that is spir 
itual judgeth all things. 1 Cor. 2: 15." 

QUEN. (I, 150) : " We assert that every believer, according to the 
measure of the gift of God, can and ought to judge, not indeed, in 
all controversies, but concerning the doctrines necessary to salvation, 
and to mark the difference between brass and beans by his own 
discretive judgment. Not that every one should follow his own 
notions, as the Papists accuse our churches of doing, but that he 
should submit himself to the judgment of the Holy Spirit, recorded 
in the Scriptures, and examine all things according to the tenor of 
this decision, but leave to the learned, the public decision of controversies. 
1 Cor. 10: 15; 11: 31: 1 Thess. 5: 19." 

In accordance with this, a distinction is made between the pub 
lic and the private ministerial (inferior) judge. The public judge 
is the clergy ; the private, each member of the Church, or private 


[17] GRH. (II, 367): "We must distinguish between power and 
its exercise. The Holy Scriptures are indeed sufficient and adapted, 
by virtue of their authority, and the perfection and perspicuity of 
their character, to decide controversies; but, through the fault of 
human weakness and wickedness, it happens that this effect does 
not always, nor with all persons, follow their application; just as 
the Gospel is the power of God unto salvation to all such as believe, 
Rom. 1 : 16, yet, at the same time, not all are actually converted 
and saved by the preaching of the Gospel." BR. (161) : " Doubt 
less, all controversies that relate to matters of faith and practice, 
necessary to be decided and known, can, in this way, be adjudged 
and decided; only, w r hen an occasion of controversy occurs, let those 
who are to engage in it, bring to the task minds that are pious, 
truth-loving, and learned. For thus, prejudice and partiality and 
evil feelings being laid aside, and the arguments of both sides being 
duly weighed, according to the rule of Scripture, it easily becomes 
apparent which is the true and which is the false opinion, on ac 
count of the perspicuity of Scripture, which acts in this case by 
virtue of its appointed office. But, as to other questions, either 
"side of which may be held without injury to the faith, their decision 
ought not to be demanded, or expected, to be so clear. 

[18] HOLL. (125): " The causative authority of the faith differs 
from the canonical authority of Scripture, because the Scriptures 
beget divine faith, through the inspired sense, which sense of Scrip 
ture remains one and the same, whether expressed in the original 
idiom oi Scripture, or in a translation conformed to the original 
text. So that the illuminating power, connected with the sense of 
Scripture, effectually manifests itself in the production of faith, not 
only by means of Scripture in the original tongues, but also through 
translations, provided the translations be perspicuous and con 
formed to the authentic text. Such is Luther s translation of the 
Bible, which is used in our churches by the faithful; which, when 
read, or heard, is as efficacious in causing assent to the faith, as if 
they should read the Hebrew text of the Old Testament and the 
Greek of the New, or hear it read and expounded by a teacher, 
although the words of that translation were not immediately in 
spired by God. But, that the Scriptures may have canonical author 
ity, it is necessary, that not only the sense, but also the words, 
shall have been derived immediately from God. For to canonical 
and normal authority in matters of doctrine and practice, an abso 
lute certainty and infallibility in the words themselves is necessary, 
which does not exist except in the original text of Scripture, for 
this depends immediately upon divine inspiration. Translations are 


the work of men, who, in translating the Scriptures, may have 

9. (2.) Perfection, or Sufficiency. 

From the fact that the Holy Scriptures are the Word of 
God, it necessarily follows that all that is contained in them is 
perfectly true ; from the fact that they are the only Word of 
God given to us, it further follows that, if we are at all to learn 
the way of life, it must be perfectly taught in the Holy Scrip 
tures, [1] and this is what is meant by their perfection or suffi- 
ciency. GKH. (II, 286): " That the Scriptures fully and per 
fectly instruct us concerning all things necessary to salvation." 
[2] And, indeed, so perfectly must everything necessary to 
salvation be contained in the Holy Scriptures, whether de 
clared in express words or to be learned inferentially, [3] that 
we never find occasion to make up deficiences from another 
source ; whence, all doctrines claiming to be derived from oral 
tradition are to be rejected. GRH. (I, 25): " Laying aside tra 
dition, we are to adhere to Scripture alone." [4] 

[1] HOLL. (173) distinguishes: "the perfection of Scripture 
(a) in reference to the subject-matter; since no inspired book, re 
ceived into the permanent canon of the faith, perishes, (b) In 
reference to the form; that no error has crept into the authentic 
text by the negligence or perfidy of transcribers, (c) In reference 
to the end to be attained; for it sufficiently teaches man all 
doctrines and moral precepts necessary to salvation." Of the 
latter, viz., perfection as to the end to be accomplished, we are 
here speaking. BR. (136): "We only assert that the Scriptures 
are perfect in reference to the accomplishment of their end, and in 
this opinion we all agree. Those things are said to be perfect in 
reference to their end which want nothing that is necessary for 
the attainment of that end. But the ultimate aim of Scripture is 
our salvation; the intermediate, faith in Christ." Of perfection 
in the second sense, we have already spoken, under the head of 
inspiration. In reference to perfection, in the first sense, BR. 
(135) remarks: " We do not so much refer to the number of the 
books that ever were written by the sacred penmen, of which 
some referred to by the names of their authors or titles in the 
remaining books of Scripture are supposed to have perished; but 
we refer to the perfection of the Scriptures that remain in regard 
to the accomplishment of their end. Moreover, also, as to those 


books which some suppose to have perished, it is to be observed 
that some of them have not really perished, but are still extant, 
though under different titles. . . . But, if some books written by 
the sacred penmen did really perish, yet we hold that (1) such 
were not written by Divine inspiration, but by human prompting; 
(2) they were also rather historical than doctrinal; at all events, 
or if it be (3) conceded that inspired books have perished, it must 
be maintained that the doctrines themselves are found with equal 
truth and fulness in the remaining books; certainly (4) that no 
book which once by the intention of the Holy Spirit formed a part 
of the canon or rule, has perished, to the detriment of the canon 
ical Scriptures, so that they should cease to be the adequate source 
and rule of faith and practice." 

GRH. remarks, in addition, that the Holy Scriptures are not 
to be regarded as perfect only since the canon of the Old and 
New Testament has been closed. (II, 286): "The perfection of 
the Holy Scriptures is to be estimated not by the number of the 
books, but from the sufficiency of the doctrine necessary to be 
known, in order to salvation. That which was written at any 
particular age of the Church, constituted a perfect canon, since 
the divine revelation was perfectly developed, so far as that age 
required it, in those books. Thus, when only the books of Moses 
were extant, the Scriptures were perfect, i. e. , with respect to that 
age of the Church, in which not many revelations had been made 
which God wished to be committed to writing." 

[2] QUEN. (I, 102): "The Holy Scriptures contain with per 
fect fulness and sufficiency all things necessary to be known in 
order to Christian faith and life, and therefore to the attainment 
of eternal salvation. 

This GRH. (II, 286, sq.): proves. "(1) From their plain 
designation and title, Ps. 19: 7. (2) From their efficient original 
cause, viz., God, most wise and most perfect. (3) From the 
subject-matter. The inspired Holy Scriptures, comprehended in 
the prophetical and apostolical books, contain the whole counsel 
of God concerning our salvation, and unfold all the parts of 
Christianity in such a manner that nothing need be added or sub 
tracted. This is proved by Acts 20: 27; 26: 22; 2 Tim. 3: 16, 17; 
Deut. 4: 2; 12: 32; Gal. 1: 8; Rev. 22: 18. (4) From their aim 
and effects." 

[3] CAL. (I, 610): "We assert, that the Holy Scriptures suffi 
ciently and adequately contain all things necessary to faith and a 
Christian life, and we think that those other things also in the 
Scriptures should be clearly and sufficiently considered, which, 


both according to the words and according to the sense, are com 
prehended therein, or, as plain interferences, are drawn from 
those which are clearly written; so that there is no need of any 
unwritten tradition to supply the defects of Scripture, or to collect 
and deduce from it those things which are virtually contained in 
it; because without any tradition they may all be sufficiently ob 
tained from Scripture alone. 

GRH. (II, 286): "We by no means say that the Scriptures are 
perfect in such a sense that all things which are necessary to be 
known for faith and practice are contained in the Scriptures, 
literally and in so many words, but some of them in substance, 
others literally; or, what is the same thing, that some are con 
tained in them explicitly and others by implication, so that by 
legitimate and undeniable inference they can be deduced from 
them." QUEN. (I, 102) thus guards against the misapprehension 
of his remark: " We do not say, with the Papists, that the Scrip 
tures are perfect by implication or contain all things necessary to 
faith, as in a root or germ, or common source, or, as it were, in 
outline .... so that they do not themselves really contain all 
things, but show whence and where they are to be sought, with a 
reference to the Church and her traditions, from which the defects 
of those doctrines which are wanting may be supplied. 

[4] Hereby the papal doctrine of tradition is rejected, which 
CHEMN. (Ex. Trid. I, 110) thus describes: "They pretend that 
many things necessary to faith and practice were handed down by 
the apostles which are not comprehended in Scripture. To this 
claim they add another, viz. , that those things which are handed 
down and observed in the Roman Church, and cannot be proved 
by any Scripture testimony, are the very things which were orally 
transmitted by the Apostles and not comprehended in Scripture." 

Whence HOLL. (178): " Tradition is the instruction orally given 
by Christ and the Apostles, which is neither substantially nor liter 
ally contained in Scripture, but by continuous succession is pre 
served in the Church." To which is replied: "We infer from the 
perfection of Scripture that it needs in no way the aid of tradition 
in the articles of faith necessary to salvation." (GRH. II, 307.) 

Inasmuch as the word, tradition, was used in such different 
senses in the Holy Scriptures, and such various significations ap 
plied to it, the Dogmaticians take occasion accurately to designate 
the sense in which they reject tradition, and from this signification 
carefully to distinguish those which in a certain sense they admit. 
CHEMN. in Exam. Trid. I, 110 seq., marks eight different signifi 
cations, viz. : 


" (1) Those things which Christ and the Apostles orally deliv 
ered, and which were afterwards committed to writing by the 
Evangelists and Apostles, are often called traditions. 

" (2) The books of Holy Scripture have been guarded by the 
Church during an uninterrupted series of ages and in a connected 
and sure succession, and they have been faithfully transmitted to 
posterity and handed down, as if from hand to hand, unto us. 

"(3) Irena3us and Tertullian celebrate apostolical tradition 
. . . They do not, indeed, propose and prove any other doctrines 
of faith by tradition than those which are contained in Scripture; 
but they show, and prove also by tradition, those same doctrines 
which are contained in Scripture. 

"(4) There are traditions concerning the exposition, the true 
sense or native meaning, of Scripture. 

" (5) The fathers sometimes thus designate those doctrines 
which are not contained in so many words and syllables in Scrip 
ture, but are derived from clear Scripture testimony, by sound, 
certain, indisputable, and evident reasoning. 

" (6) The term is applied to the universal consent of the fathers. 
The phrase is common, by the tradition of the fathers (patres 
ita tradiderunt) . 

" (7) When the ancients made mention of unwritten tradi 
tions they did not understand by them doctrines of faith to be 
received without, over and above Scripture, even if they could not 
be proved by any Scripture testimony; but they spoke concerning 
certain rites and customs, which on account of their antiquity they 
ascribed to the Apostles. 

"(8) Traditions relating both to faith and practice, which 
cannot be proved by any Scripture testimony, which nevertheless 
the Council of Trent commands to be received and venerated 
with the same reverence and pious feeling as the Scriptures them 

HOLL. (178) accordingly divides the traditions of the Church 
into "ritual, historical, exegetical, evidential, and dogmatical." 
Only the latter class is here referred to. HOLL. : We do not dis 
approve of all the ritual traditions of the Church, but the theolog 
ical rule observed by CHEMN. in his Exam. Cone. Trid. must be 
adhered to, viz. , Let the ceremonies in the Church be of an un 
essential nature, few in number, devout, and useful for edification, 
order, and decorum; let the observance of them be left free, so as 
to avoid giving offence, and so that they may be instituted, 
changed, or abrogated with a reference to edification, to times, 
places, and persons. We admit historical tradition, concerning the 


canon of Scripture, not as an infallible, but as a probable argument. 
We receive with gratitude exegetical traditions, if namely the inter 
pretation of the fathers present no discrepancy with the scriptural 
text, the proper use of the words, the context, and the analogy of 
faith. We hold in high esteem evidential tradition, and confess with 
Chemnitz that we differ from those who invent opinions that find 
no supporting testimony in any age of the Church. We think also 
that no doctrine that is new and at variance icith all antiquity should be 
received in the Church." The Symbolical Books treat only of the 
ecclesiastical or ceremonial traditions. The AUG. CONF. XV, 
APOLOGY VIII, and FORM. CONG. X, discuss the questions: (1) 
Whether these are admissible, which they answer affirmatively; 
and (2) Whether in the Church nothing dare be taught, as nothing 
is believed, which is not proved by an express declaration of Scrip 
ture ? which, in the light of Christian liberty, they deny. 

Syncretism then gave occasion to further specifications in regard 
to the idea of tradition. G. CALIXTUS had said: "It should not 
be doubted, that from the writings of the ancient Church, which 
are still extant, the common belief of antiquity can be sufficiently 
ascertained, and that should be regarded as apostolical, which they 
unanimously teach and declare that they receive as apostolical. " 
To which CAL. (I, 327) replies: "Although some innovators differ 
from the Papists in this, that they do not recognize any article of 
faith that is merely traditional and not contained in the Scriptures, 
or receive any doctrine as taught by the Apostles, which is not 
written; yet they side with the Papists in this, that they accept as 
the Word of God something not written and handed down by the 
Apostles, and wish some apostolical tradition, I know not what, 
handed down to us through the writings of the fathers, to be re 
garded as the undoubted Word of God." And, page 330, the ad 
ditional statement: "Although it is not to be doubted that the 
Apostles taught not only by writings but also viva voce, and that 
the Word which they preached, no less than what is comprehended 
in the Scriptures, is to be regarded as the undoubted Word of God, 
yet we neither can, nor ought to, gratify the Papists by teach 
ing that there is still extant some additional Word of God com 
municated by the Apostles, and handed down from them to us, 
which should be received as infallible and indubitable, along with 
the prophetical and apostolical Holy Scriptures. 

1.0. (3.) Perspicuity. 

If the Holy Scriptures contain everything necessary to sal 
vation, and if they alone contain it, they must necessarily ex- 


hibit it so clearly and plainly that it is accessible to the com 
prehension of every one ; hence the attribute of Perspicuity is 
ascribed to the Holy Scriptures. CAL. (I, 467): " Because in 
those things which are necessary to be known in order to sal 
vation, the Scriptures are abundantly and admirably explicit, 
both by the intention of God their Author, and by the natural 
signification of the words, so that they need no external and 
adventitious light." [1] But while such perspicuity is as 
cribed to the Holy Scriptures, it is not meant that every par 
ticular that is contained in them is equally clear and plain to 
all, but only that all that is necessary to be known in order to 
salvation is clearly and plainly taught in them, [2] and that, 
if this be not expressed in all cases with equal clearness, it can 
nevertheless be gathered from a collocation of the passages 
bearing upon it. [3] It is also not maintained that the Holy 
Scriptures can be understood without the possession of certain 
prerequisites. On the other hand, such as the following are 
required, viz., proper maturity of judgment, the necessary 
philological attainments, an unprejudiced frame of mind in 
the investigation of the sacred truth, and a will inclined to 
embrace this truth in its purity. [4] Where these prerequi 
sites are wanting, there can, as a matter of course, be no thor 
ough understanding of the Holy Scriptures; but in such a 
case the fault does not lie in the Holy Scriptures. [5] Where 
these prerequisites exist, a clear and accurate comprehension of 
the saving truths contained in Scripture may be gained, which 
nevertheless, even in this case, is merely external and natural 
until, by the illumination of the Holy Spirit, an internal ap 
prehension of them is effected, [6] as well as the. power of 
heartily appropriating to one s self the saving truths contained 
in Scripture. [7] Finally, the perspicuity of the Holy Scrip 
tures is not to be so understood as if the mysteries of the Chris 
tian faith were unveiled by it ; on the other hand, these re 
main as they are, mysteries ; perspicuity consists only in this, 
that the Scriptures make known to us the mysteries just as 
God wishes them to be made known. [8] 

From what has here been said, it naturally follows, further, 
that in all cases in which the interpretation of a passage is 
doubtful, the decision dare never be found anywhere else than 


in the Scriptures themselves, whereby the faculty of self-inter 
pretation is ascribed to the Holy Scriptures. [9] And, in this 
interpretation, it is a fundamental principle, that the doubtful 
passages are to be explained by those that are clear. [10] In 
asmuch now as all doctrines necessary to be known in order 
to salvation, are clearly taught in Scripture, so that we gain 
from them the general substance of the Christian plan of sal 
vation ; and inasmuch, further, as we can safely presuppose 
that the Holy Scriptures will not contradict themselves, we 
need only take care that we do not derive from these doubtful 
passages a sense that would conflict with the clearly revealed 
truths ; we must therefore interpret according to the analogy of 
faith. (CAL.: " The analogy of faith is the consistency of the 
doctrine clearly revealed in the Holy Scriptures.") [11] To 
the interpretation of all Scripture, whether doubtful or plain, 
the general rule applies, that each passage contains but one 
original and proper sense, that, namely, which is derived im 
mediately from the words employed (the literal sense), which 
is to be ascertained in every case by the use of the means 
above described. [12] 

[1] The fullest description of perspicuity we find in Bit. (138): 
Perspicuity, or that those things which are necessary to be be 
lieved and done by man in seeking to be saved, are taught in 
Scripture in words and phrases so clear and conformed to the 
usage of speech, that any man acquainted with the language, 
possessed of a common judgment, and paying due attention to the 
words, may learn the true sense of the words, so far as those things 
are concerned which must be known, and may embrace these fun 
damental doctrines by the simple grasp of his mind; according as 
the mind of man is led, by the Scriptures themselves and their 
supernatural light, or the divine energy conjoined with them, to 
yield the assent of faith to the word understood and the things 

The proof, according to QUEN. (I, 121, 122): "(1) From Dent. 
30: 11, 12; Rom. 10: 8; 2 Pet. 1: 19; Ps. 19: 8; 119: 105; Prov. 
6: 23. (2) Fryni the character of Scripture: (a) Because it has God 
for its Author, who can speak perspicuously, and does not wish to 
speak obscurely. He can speak perspicuously, for He formed 
speech and the voice. To say that He wished to speak obscurely, 
would be nothing short of blasphemy. (&) It gives wisdom to 
babes or the unskilled, Ps. 19: 7; 2 Tim. 3: 15. (c) It reveals 


hidden mysteries, Rom. 16: 25; 1 Cor. 2:9, 10; Col. 1:26, 27. 
((/) It was given for the purpose that the will of God might here be 
learned, and men informed in regard to eternal life, John 20: 31; 
Rom. 15: 4. (e) Because its precepts are to be read by all, Deut. 
17: 19; John 5: 39." 

[2] GRH. (I, 26): " It is to be observed that when we call the 
Scriptures perspicuous, we do not mean that every particular ex 
pression, anywhere contained in Scripture, is so constituted that at 
the first glance it must be plainly and fully understood by every 
one. On the other hand, we confess that certain things are ob 
scurely expressed in Scripture and difficult to be understood . . . 
But this we do assert, and endeavor in every way to prove, that 
the perspicuity of the Scriptures is of such a nature that a certain 
and consistent opinion can be drawn from them concerning the 
doctrines whose knowledge is necessary to salvation." \Yhence it 
follows (II, 329) that "the knowledge of those things, which are 
nowhere plainly and perspicuously revealed in Scripture, is not 
absolutely necessary to salvation." 

QUEN. (I, 118): "We do not maintain that all Scripture, in 
every particular, is clear and perspicuous. For we grant that cer 
tain things are met with in the sacred books that are obscure and 
difficult to be understood, 2 Pet. 3: 16, not only in respect to the 
sublimity of their subject-matter, but also as to the utterance of 
the Holy Spirit, that afford materials for calling into exercise the 
learning of the doctors during the course of a long life, and the full 
understanding of which is to be expected only in heaven; but that 
the doctrines of faith and moral precepts are taught so obscurely 
everywhere, that they can nowhere be found clearly and explicitly, 
it is this that we deny. But the articles of faith and the moral 
precepts are taught in Scripture in their proper places, not in ob 
scure and ambiguous words, but in such as are fitted to them, and 
free from all ambiguity, so that every diligent reader of Scripture, 
who reads it devoutly and piously, can understand them." 
(140): "At least in those places where the writer professedly, as 
they say, treats of a particular precept of faith or morals, or 
where its seat is; so that there is no article of faith, or no moral 
precept, which is not taught in Scripture somewhere in literal, 
clear, and conspicuous language.") 

QUEN. (I, 18) distinguishes between " onomastic, chronology 
topographical, allegorical, typical, prophetical (i. e.,, predictions, 
but unfulfilled) matters, and those which are historical, dogmat 
ical, or moral. If in the former class, especially in points relating 
to style and order, there should occur some difficulty or obscurity, 


this would still not derogate from the perspicuity of Scripture in 
matters of the latter class. The Scriptures give us elementary 
truths, containing the supreme and necessary articles of our religion. 
They give us sublime, mystical, onomastic truths. God chose to 
teach most clearly in the sacred books the elementary truths, be 
cause what is taught by them is necessary to be known by all in 
order to salvation. Other matters are involved in some difficulty." 

[3] GRH. (II, 329): "Observe that some things in Scripture are 
clearer than others, and what is obscurely expressed in one pas 
sage is more clearly explained in another." 

QUEN. (I, 118): "It is one thing that there should at times be 
some difficulty and obscurity in the statement of the mysteries of 
the faith and of those things that must be believed in order to sal 
vation; and another, that this obscurity should be nowhere cleared 
up in the Scriptures themselves, if a comparison be instituted with 
parallel passages and the analogy of faith as contained in Scripture 
be called into requisition. Doubtless what is expressed in one 
place obscurely, appears perfectly clear in another; and what in 
one passage is hidden under tropes and figures, is elsewhere dis 
closed in plain and simple language; and thus upon many difficult 
passages of Scripture, light is thrown by others that are more 

[4] GRH. (II, 329): "Observe that, in asserting perspicuity, we 
do not exclude the godly study of the Scriptures by reading and 
meditation, nor the use of the aids necessary to the interpretation 
of the Scripture." 

QUEN. (I, 119): " We are to distinguish between men who, on 
account of their immature age and their want of familiarity with 
the language in which they read the Scriptures, meet with difficulty 
through unskillfulness or ignorance, or who are prejudiced by pre 
conceived erroneous opinions, and those with whom this is not the 
case. . . . For we presuppose a sufficient knowledge of the lan 
guage, maturity of age, a mind not filled with prejudice and erron 
eous opinions, and also a legitimate and good translation of the 
original text." 

BR. (146): "For he who does not attend to the words them 
selves, but follows his own prejudices and makes the words of 
Scripture conform to them, can err even in perspicuous passages 
and in investigating the true sense." Whence HOLL. (149): 
"The perspicuity of Scriptures is not absolute, but dependent upon 
the use of means, inasmuch as, in endeavoring to understand it, the 
divinely instituted method must be accurately observed. For 
there is required: (1) Prayer to God the Father of Lights. (2) A 


knowledge of the idiom in which the Holy Scriptures are ex 
pressed, whether it be the original or in a version. (3) The 
attentive consideration of the expressions, of the scope, of the 
previous and subsequent context. (4) The laying aside of pre 
conceived opinions and of evil feelings, of ambition, hatred, envy, 
boldness, etc., etc." 

[5] Wherefore QUEN. (I, 118) distinguishes between " obscurity 
in the object contemplated and that which lies in the subject con 
templating it. The Scriptures, especially in things necessary to 
salvation, are not obscure in and of themselves, or through a want 
of native clearness and plainness, but they are lucid and perspic 
uous. They may be obscure, however, accidentally, on account 
of the incapacity and blindness of the human mind, and through 
the malice of heretics and the heterodox, who superadd to their 
natural blindness a voluntary one, and maliciously close the eyes 
of their -mind against the clearest light of Scripture. (2 Cor. 4: 
3.)" As an instance of this, the controversy in regard to the 
Lord s Supper is cited (I, 124): "The words of the Testament 
are in themselves very perspicuous, but are variously interpreted ; 
because many, neglecting the literal and proper sense, studiously 
seek a foreign one, and do not follow so much the teaching of 
Christ as the counsel and dictation of blind reason. A mistake 
as to the cause is therefore made when the discrepancy in the ex 
positions is ascribed to the obscurity of Scriptures, since its cause 
is either the perverseness or imbecility of men. The obscurity 
which lies in the subject must not be transferred to the object. . . 
If nothing be perspicuously spoken except that which cannot be 
understood perversely and expounded in a bad sense, then noth 
ing in the wide universe can be perspicuously and plainly uttered. 

[6] GRH. (I, 26): "The clearness of Scripture is twofold; as 
Luther says, One kind is external, lying in the ministry of the 
Word, the other in the knowledge of the heart. If you speak of 
the internal clearness, no man understands a single iota in the 
Scriptures by the natural powers of his own mind, unless he have 
the Spirit of God; all have obscure hearts. The Holy Spirit is 
required for the understanding of the whole of Scripture and of all 
its parts. If you allude to the external clearness, there is nothing 
left obscure and ambiguous, but all things brought to light by the 
Word are perfectly clear. 

GRH. (I, 52): "Some, who have not yet been enlightened by 
the Holy Spirit, may have a knowledge of the Scripture doctrines, 
and acquire an historic faith by the outward ministration of the 
Word; but an absolutely certain, firm, and saving knowledge they 


cannot have without the internal illumination of the mind by the 
Holy Spirit." There is, therefore, a distinction made between 
the "grammatical (literal) and external" and the " spiritual, divine 
and internal sense." Perspicuity in the first sense consists, BR. 
(140), "in the proper selection of words, their correspondence 
with the things signified, and their mutual connection and arrange 
ment, according to the common usage of language" (141): "For 
not only the regenerated and believers, but also the unregenerate 
and godless, through this clearness of the words in their natural 
signification, in which respect they are the same for all readers, 
can acquire a knowledge of the sense designed by the words, i. e. , 
a merely literal or historical, not a saving or believing knowledge. 
Also (144), (from the Jena and Wittenberg Opinion, in answer 
to Rathmann s Reply, 1629): . . . "If the Reply means to infer 
that no unconverted person can understand the proper sense 
which is contained in the words of Scripture, and expressed by 
them, i. e. , the grammatical and literal sense, unless the Holy 
Spirit assist with His gracious illumination, then we cannot agree 
with the Reply, but abide by our own opinion. . . . For the 
words, and whatever serves to interpret them, viz., the lexicons, 
dictionaries, and grammars of the Latin, Greek, and Hebrew 
languages, are human inventions, and belong to the gifts of nature 
and not to the gracious gifts of the Holy Spirit; for He was not 
appointed, nor was He poured out, that He might treat of gram 
matical rules and teach us to hunt up Hebrew roots, . . . but 
that He should teach us the articles of faith through the Scriptures 
and instruct us in the truth that maketh wise unto salvation. 
Many a one properly understands the words without possessing 
that saving knowledge of the mysteries which belongs to faith." 

CAL. (I, 657): " Although the external sense of Scripture may 
be understood by the unregenerate, yet the saving and internal 
sense, joined with hearty assent, cannot be attained without the 
illumination of the Holy Spirit." 

[7] GRH. (II, 338): "A literal acquaintance with the articles 
of the faith is not sufficient to salvation, but there must also be a 
spiritual knowledge, for the acquisition of which the internal 
illumination of the Holy Spirit is necessary; and this is to be 
obtained by humble prayer." 

BR. (150): " In order that man may properly understand the 
plan of salvation, two things are necessary: first, that by the nat 
ural powers of his mind he comprehend those things that neces 
sarily must be known by him in order to his salvation; and sec 
ondly, that he embrace these, thus apprehended as true and 


divinely revealed, and yield to them the full assent of faith. The 
Scriptures, therefore, which in this matter should be as a bright and 
shining light, ought to accomplish these two ends: first, to repre 
sent to -the mind the things that are to be known in language 
adapted to this end and clear, so that they may be simply and 
naturally apprehended; and secondly, that when the thing signi 
fied is of a more exalted nature and the mind too weak or corrupt 
to be able to judge correctly by the exercise of its own powers 
concerning that which is signified by the words, or to elitit or yield 
the assent that is due, the Scriptures themselves, by their own 
illuminative power, should enable the mind to accomplish this and 
bestow the faculty of apprehending and embracing the truth." 
The latter alone is referred to when HOLL. remarks (155): "An 
unregenerate man, opposing the illuminating grace of the Holy 
Spirit, cannot understand the true sense of the sacred writings. 
But when an unregenerate man, in a teachable spirit, attentively 
reads the Holy Scriptures, or hears them expounded by the living 
teacher, the Holy Spirit illuminates him by the Scriptures, so that 
he may understand the true sense of the Divine Word and rightly 
apply it, thus understood, with saving effect." And although 
HOLL. claims "for the unregenerate but teachable the prevenient 
and preparative grace of the Holy Spirit, that they may acquire an 
external and literal knowledge of the Holy Scriptures," he does 
not thereby mean anything more than that such grace is needed in 
order that they may attain to a self-appropriation of the truth of 
salvation; for he elsewhere remarks (158): "The words of the 
Prophets and Apostles may be considered either out of their proper 
scriptural connection, or in it. In the former case, they are analo 
gous to human words, and can be understood by the unregenerate 
without the grace of the Holy Spirit; but if they be considered in 
their proper connection, as they are accommodated to the mysteries 
of the faith, and are, as receptacles or vehicles of these, really Divine 
words, no correct conception, conformed to the mind of the Spirit, 
can be formed concerning them without the preceding prevenient 
and preparative grace of the Holy Spirit." 

[8] HOLL. (149): "The Scriptures are called clear, not in re 
spect to the subject-matter, but to the words, for even subjects that 
are not clear may be expressed with clear and perspicuous words. 

QUEN. (I, 117): "We must make a distinction between the 
clearness of the subjects which are revealed in Scripture and the 
plainness of the words by which the revealed subjects are expressed. 
We refer not to the former but to the latter ; for we acknowledge 
that many mysteries are contained in the Scriptures, abstruse and 


impenetrable by the human intellect, especially in this life; but we 
deny that they are taught in Scripture in an obscure style and with 
ambiguous words. Luther expresses it differently : The things 
of God are obscure; . . . the things of Scripture are perspicuous. 
. . . The doctrines in themselves are obscure; but in so far as they 
are presented in Scripture they are manifest, if we are willing to 
be content with that knowledge which God communicates in the 
Scriptures to the Church." 

[9] QUEN. (I, 137): "From no other source than the Holy 
Scriptures themselves can a certain and infallible interpretation of 
Scripture be drawn. For Scripture itself, or rather the Holy Spirit 
speaking in Scripture or through it, is the legitimate and indepen 
dent (d~fi #wof) interpreter of itself." 

And further, QUEN. (I, 144): " We cannot, therefore, acknowl 
edge the harmonious opinions of the ancient teachers of the Church 
or the decisions of councils as a certain and unquestionable rule 
and measure of scriptural interpretation, nor the Roman pontiff as 
the supreme, infallible interpreter of the Holy Scriptures." 

[10] QUEN. (I, 137): " The more obscure passages, which need 
explanation, can and should be explained by other passages that 
are more clear, and thus the Scripture itself furnishes an interpre 
tation of the more obscure expressions when a comparison of these 
is made with those that are more clear; so that Scripture is ex 
plained by Scripture." 

[11] GRH. (I, 53): " From those perspicuous passages of Scrip 
ture a rule of faith is gathered, which is, so to speak, a summary 
of the heavenly doctrine extracted from the clearest passages of 
Scripture. Whatever, therefore, is necessary, is clearly expressed 
in the Holy Scriptures, says Chrysostom. If certain things in them 
are very obscure, the knowledge of these is not necessary to all for 
their salvation; and hence, although we may not always ascertain 
their true and genuine interpretation, it is sufficient if, in inter 
preting them, we propose nothing that conflicts with the rule of 

(II, 424) : "All interpretation of Scripture should be according 
to the analogy of faith. This canon is taught in Rom. 12 : 6, and 
signifies that the interpretation of Scripture should be instituted 
and carried on in such a manner as to accord with the usual line 
of thought which is conveyed in Scripture concerning each article 
of the heavenly doctrine. For, since all Scripture was given by 
the immediate suggestion of the Holy Spirit, and is inspired, all 
things in it are harmonious and perfectly consistent with each 
other, so that no discrepancy or self-contradiction can occur. 


The articles of faith, which the apostle here means by nton^ the 
knowledge of which is necessary for all in order to salvation, are 
taught in the Scriptures in clear and perspicuous language, of 
which a brief summary is contained in the Apostles Creed, which 
the fathers often call "the rule of faith." Nothing is ever to be 
broached in the interpretation of Scripture that conflicts with this 
rule of faith; and hence, if we be not exactly able at times to 
ascertain the precise sense of any passage, as designed by the Holy 
Spirit, we should nevertheless beware of proposing anything that 
is contrary to the analogy of faith. 

GRH. (I, 54) thus states all the rules that apply to the interpre 
tation of the Holy Scriptures: " (1) Without the light of the 
Holy Spirit, our mind is blind so far as the understanding and in 
terpreting of Scripture are concerned. (2) In addition to this 
blindness, natural to us all, some are blinded by peculiar wicked 
ness and an unyielding obstinacy, whose eyes the Holy Spirit 
either has opened or has wished to open, but they have contuma 
ciously resisted Him; neither of these kinds of blindness, however, 
makes or proves the Scriptures obscure. (3) Because our mind is 
blind, we are prayerfully to implore the light of the Holy Spirit. 
(4) But this illumination of the mind the Holy Spirit does not 
confer immediately, but by the light of the Word heard and medi 
tated upon. (5) Inasmuch as the doctrines necessary to be known 
by every one in order to salvation are taught in Scripture in clear 
and perspicuous language, (6) the remaining passages of Scripture 
receive light from these. (7) For from the perspicuous passages of 
Scripture, a rule of faith is deduced to which thi exposition of the 
remainder must be conformed. (8) And if we cannot ascertain 
the precisely literal sense of all passages, it is sufficient that in 
their interpretation we do not propose anything contrary to the 
analogy of faith. (9) Nevertheless, it is also of importance that 
we rightly and accurately interpret the more obscure passages of 
Scripture, which can be done if we apply the means adapted to 
remove the difficulties. (10) That we may discover these means, 
we must seek the causes of the obscurity. (11) Some Scripture 
passages are obscure in themselves, when singly considered, others 
when compared with other passages; if they merely seem to conflict 
with other passages, this obscurity may be removed by reconciling 
the passages. (12) Those that are obscure in themselves and 
singly are so either as to their subject-matter or as to their words. 
The obscurity in regard to the subjects discussed is removed by 
those settled axioms, in individual articles of belief, which are to 
be regarded as the unfailing guide. (13) The obscurity in regard 


to the words is dispelled by the grammatical analysis of sentences, 
by the rhetorical exposition of the tropes and figures, by the logical 
consideration of the order and circumstances, and finally by an 
acquaintance with physical science; but the greatest assistance in 
all these cases is afforded by a prudent and diligent collation of 
Scripture passages, whenever either the same or different words and 
phrases are employed to express the same or different tilings." 
He illustrates the manner of making deductions from the rule of 
faith by the example of the doctrine of the Lord s Supper. 

[12] GRH. (I, 67): "There is but one proper and true sense of 
each passage, which the Holy Spirit thereby intends, and which is 
drawn from the proper signification of the words, and only from 
this literal sense available arguments may be derived." But this 
literal sense may be either strictly literal, which the Holy Spirit 
intends when the words are taken in their usual signification, e. g. , 
God is a spirit (John 4: 24), or figurative or tropical, which is the 
intention oi the Holy Spirit when words are used figuratively, c. g. , 
God is our shield (Gen. 15: 1), (HoLL., 91). But in this case also 
the remark applies, GRH. (II, 425): "All interpretation of Scrip 
ture should be literal, and there should be no departure from the 
letter in matters of faith, unless the Scriptures themselves indicate 
the figurativencss and explain it," (I, 67): "Allegories, tropes, 
anagogies, are not different senses but different adaptations of the 
same sense and subject designated by the letter. The same histor 
ical narrative may be presented in a variety of ways, and treated 
either allege rically, or tropically, or analogically, while the true 
and literal sense of the words in which the history is described 
remains the same." The Dogmaticians therefore assume, it is 
true, such a spiritual sense in certain cases, but strictly speaking 
this is not understood as a second sense, co-ordinate with the first, 
but only that the natural signification of the words, which must 
alw r ays be the basis of the interpretation, admits also a special 
spiritual application, or contains at the same time a symbolical 
allusion. HOLL. (91): " That is called the mystical sense which is 
not immediately signified by the inspired words, but which pro 
ceeds and is deduced from the subject signified by the inspired 
words. It is, however, improperly and unauthorizedly called the 
sense of the biblical expression, since it is not the immediate sense 
of the inspired words, but inasmuch as God desires, by means of 
the subject or fact described by those words, to present some other 
subject or fact to the consideration of men. More properly, there 
fore, it is called the accommodation of the literal sense, or its mystical 
application, than the mystical sense of Scripture, e. g., Jonah 2: 1. 


Here the prophet Jonah is said to have been three days and nights 
in the belly of the whale, and the literal sense is the one plainly 
designed by God, expressed and immediately implied by the 
words. When now this whole history or transaction is employed 
to signify the abode of Christ for three days and nights in the grave, 
no new sense here arises, but there is merely an accommodation and 
application of that historical narrative so as by it to express the fact 
that Christ was to be three days and nights in the grave." Hence 
the Dogmaticians declare against the assumption of a double sense 
in the prophecies of the Old Testament. Such a mystical sense may 
either be designed by God, or it may be engrafted upon the literal 
sense. Only in the former case dare it be employed in the inter 
pretation of Scripture. CAL. (I, 664): " The mystical accommo 
dation may either be mpa^ (contained in the written Word) and 
divine, or dypaooc (superadded to the written Word) and of human 
invention." (HoLL. : Either innate or introduced.) 

QUEN. (I, 131): " When our theological writers approve of the 
following scholastic axioms, viz.: Mystical theology can prove 
nothing, parabolic theology cannot be advanced in argument, solid 
and effective arguments for proving the doctrines of the faith and 
refuting errors can be drawn only from the literal sense of Scrip 
ture, they do not exclude, but at the same time include, mystical 
applications of the literal sense of this or that biblical passage, 
made by the Holy Spirit Himself in the Holy Scriptures; yet 
they exclude allegorical and parabolical interpretations that men 
have devised and forced upon the Scriptures. For applications of 
the literal sense of this or that passage or sacred narrative, that are 
shown to exist and are explained in the Scriptures themselves, can 
be used in proof, just as other things that are literally expressed in 
the Scriptures. When, therefore, in any plain Scripture passage 
there is an accommodation of the literal sense to a spiritual subject, 
then its validity for proving or disapproving is just as great. 
" The mystical sense, as it may be loosely styled, is divided by the 
Lutheran theologians into the allegorical, typical, and parabolical. 
It is called the allegorical sense, when a Scriptural historical narra 
tive of things that really occurred is applied to a certain mystery 
or spiritual doctrine by the intention of the Holy Spirit in an alle 
gorical manner; it is called typical when, under external facts or 
prophetic visions, things hidden, either present or future, are pre 
figured, or especially matters relating to the New Testament are 
shadowed forth; and parabolical, when something is described as 
having really occurred, and yet applied to designate something else 
that is spiritual." (CAL. I, 665.) 


The Romanists distinguish between the allegorical sense, the 
tropological (when the words or facts under consideration refer to 
something that relates to morals), and the anagogical (when the 
words or facts are used with a reference to eternal life). 

11. (4.) Efficacy. 

CAL. (I, 478): " That the Holy Scriptures are living and 
efficacious, and a means of illumination, conversion, and sal 
vation, prepared and vivified by Divine power." 

This subject will be treated of subsequently under the head 
of the Means of Grace. 

12. Of the Canon and the Apocryphal Books. 
The written Word of God consists of the Word of God of the 
Old and the Word of God of the New Testament. [1] In the col 
lection, however, that contains both of these, we find also other 
writings, which we do not call the Word of God in the same 
sense. We distinguish these two kinds of writings in the fol 
lowing manner, viz.: we call the first class canonical books, i. e., 
such as, because they are inspired by God, [2] are the rule and 
guide of our faith ; [3] the others, apocryphal books, i. e., such 
whose divine origin is either doubtful or has been disproved. 
[4] Although both kinds are found in the Bible, only those 
of the first class are admitted as a rule of faith, whence they 
are called the Canon (catalogue, or number, of the canonical 
books), while those of the other class may contribute their 
share to the edification of believers, but are not to be regarded 
as the Word of God, and from them, therefore, no proof for 
*my doctrine of the faith is to be drawn. [5] 

Whether a book is canonical or not, we are then to ascertain 
by the signs whereby we recognize the Word of God in general 
as such, as of divine origin, as inspired. [6] The testimony 
of the Holy Spirit is more conclusive evidence than anything 
else of the divine character of the contents of a book; next to this 
ome all the other kinds of evidence which-we have enumerated 
under the head of the Authority of Holy Scripture ( 8, Note 
10) as the external and internal criteria. [7] Among the lat 
ter, the testimony of the Church in the earliest ages in regard 
to the canonical character of a book is of special importance, 
for it is assuredly a matter of the highest moment if we know 


that a book was acknowledged as canonical already at a day 
when its origin could be most accurately ascertained. [8] 
More particularly do we need the testimony of the earliest 
ages of the Church in deciding historical questions, as to 
the name of the author of a book, as to the language in which 
it was originally composed ; [9] for by the testimony of the 
Holy Spirit we may indeed become assured of the divinity of 
a book, experiencing its power in our own hearts, but He 
bears *no testimony as to questions of this kind. 

As canonical books of the Old Testament we acknowledge : 
(1) Genesis; (2) Exodus; (3) Leviticus; (4) Numbers; (5) 
Deuteronomy ; (6) Joshua ; (7) Judges ; (8) Ruth ; (9) I and II 
Samuel ; (10) I and II Kings ; (11) I and II Chronicles ; (12) 
Ezra and Nehemiah (or second Ezra) ; (13) Esther ; (14) Job ; 
(15) Psalms; (16) Proverbs; (17) Ecclesiastes ; (18) Song of 
Solomon ; (19) Isaiah ; (20) Jeremiah ; (21) Lamentation ; (22) 
Ezekiel ; (23) Daniel ; (24) twelve minor prophets, Hosea, Joel, 
Amos, Obadiah, Jonah, Micah, Nahum, Habakkuk, Zephaniah, 
Haggai, Zachariah, Malachi. [10] 

As apocryphal : Tobias, Judith, Baruch, I, II, and III Mac 
cabees, III and IV Ezra, Wisdom of Solomon, Ecclesiasticus 
or Syracides. As appendices : Epistle of Jeremiah, annexed to 
Baruch, Appendix to Daniel, Supplement to Esther, Prayer 
of Manasseh. (GRH.) [11] 

In the New Testament we have no apocryphal books in the 
same sense as in the Old Testament ; but still there are single 
books of the New Testament in regard to whose origin and 
authors the evidence is not in all cases equally consentaneous. 
A certain distinction must therefore be made between them 
and the others that are equally authenticated by every species 
of evidence ; and yet this distinction, resting as it does merely 
upon the want of entire agreement in the evidence, whilst 
very important testimony of various kinds is at hand to prove 
their canonical authority, is not of so much importance as to 
prevent us from making a canonical use of these books. [12] 

The books of the New Testament authenticated by all the 

testimonies are the Gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke, [13] and 

John, Acts of the Apostles, Paul s Epistle to the Romans, his 

two Epistles to the Corinthians, his Epistles to the Galatians, 



Ephesians, Philippians, Colossians, two Epistles to the Thessa- 
lonians, two to Timothy, the Epistle to Titus, the Epistle to 
Philemon, the first Epistle of Peter, and the first of John. 

Those in regard to which doubts are entertained by some 
are the Epistle to the Hebrews, the second Epistle of Peter, the 
second and third of John, the Epistle of James, that of Judc, 
and the Apocalypse of John. 

[1] GRH. (II, 50): "The biblical books are distinguished into 
the books of the Old and New Testaments. The books of the Old 
Testament are those which were written before the appearance of 
Christ; the books of the New Testament, those which were written 
after the appearance of Christ, and addressed to the Church. 
It is to be observed, that the books of the Old Testament are called 
such, not because they do not manifestly contain anything of the 
substance, grace, and felicity of the New Testament promised 
through Christ to those believing in Him, but because they predict 
and prefigure that as future and to be fulfilled in due time, which 
in the New Testament is announced as complete. Rom. 3 : 21 ; 
16 : 26." 

HOLL. (129), as to the relation between the Old and New Testa 
ments: "The books of the Old Testament were committed to the 
Israelitic Church, those of the New Testament to the Christian 
Church, collected from all nations. Yet the Christian Church re 
ceives the canonical books of the Old Testament on account of the 
most admirable harmony of the prophetic and apostolic writings, 
on account of their great utility, and especially in obedience to the 
command of Christ, John 5 : 39. There is a disparity between 
the Old and New Testaments as to the degree of perspicuity, but 
not a diversity as to the object of revelation, as if in the one, things 
were explicitly taught as necessary to be believed, different from 
those so taught in the other, since faith is the same in both. Eph. 
4 : 16." 

[2] CHEMN. (Ex. Trid. I, 85): "The Canonical Scriptures de 
rive their eminent authority mainly from the fact that they are 
divinely inspired, 2 Tim. 3 : 16; i. e., that they came not by the 
will of rnan, but the men of God both spake and wrote as they 
were moved by the Holy Ghost." 

[3] CHEMN. (Ex. Trid. I, 81): "The Scriptures are called 
canonical, the canonical books, or the canon of Scripture, because 
they are a rule according to which the edifice of the faith of the 
Church is to be so constructed and framed that whatever agrees 
with this rule is to be regarded as right, sound, and apostolical ; 


and that whatever does not quadrate with it, but varies either by 
excess or deficiency, is properly to be regarded as supposititious, 
adulterated, erroneous. This canon or rule is the doctrine divinely 
communicated from the beginning of the world to the human race 
through the patriarchs, prophets, Christ, and the apostles. And 
because this doctrine is by the will of God contained in the Scrip 
tures, they are hence called canonical. A canon is an infallible 
rule or measure which by no means allows that anything be added 
to it or taken from it. 

[4] GRH. (II, 53): "The apocryphal books are so called anb nn 
dTroKpvTTTeiv, which signifies concealed, either because their origin was 
not clearly ascertained by those by whose testimony the authority 
of the true Scriptures has been handed down to us (Augustine); or, 
because they are not read publicly in the churches as a source of 
proof for ecclesiastical doctrines, but merely as a means of moral 
improvement." ROLL. (131): " The apocryphal books are those 
which are found in the volume of Scripture, but do not belong to 
the canon, and were not written by immediate divine inspiration. 
This definition applies only to those which accompany the canon 
ical Scriptures ; another class consists of those which contain 
fables, errors, and lies, and hence are not to be read in the 
churches." GRH. (II, 55): " The former kind are called apocry 
phal, in the sense of obscure (absconditi), i. e., uncertain and hidden 
as to their origin; the other class, in the sense that they deserve to 
be kept obscure (abscondendi) and ought not to be read in the 
churches." CAL. (I, 491): " The division of the books of Scrip 
ture into canonical and apocryphal is improper and equivocal, 
since only the former meet the definition of the Holy Scriptures, 
the latter merely having the name. 

[5] CHEMN. (Ex. Trid. I, 93): "Are then these books to be ab 
solutely condemned and rejected ? This we by no means demand. 
Of what use then is this whole discussion ? We reply, That the 
rule of faith or sound doctrine in the Church may be certain. The 
fathers taught that authoritative proof of ecclesiastical doctrine was 
to be drawn only from the canonical books. . . . The authority of 
canonical Scripture alone was judged competent to decide in dis 
puted questions; but the other books, which Cyprian calls eccle 
siastical, Jerome apocryphal, they desired indeed to have read in 
the churches, merely however for the edification of the people, not 
as proof in matters of doctrine. No dogma is, therefore, to be de 
duced from these books which has not clear and indubitable sup 
port and evidence in the canonical books. No controverted topic 
can be decided by these books, if there be not other and conclu- 


sive evidence in the canonical books. But whatever is said in these 
books is to be expounded and understood according to the analogy 
of those truths which are plainly taught in the canonical books." 

CAL. (I, 492) : " Two things are necessary to constitute a canon 
ical book; first, inspiration, or the immediate divine impulse, which 
proves the document in question to be divine truth, or the very 
Word of God; secondly, the divine sanction (canonicatio divina), 
by which God constitutes His written Word the perpetual and 
universal rule of the Church. 

HOLL. (129): " The canonical books are those whose doctrines 
.and single words were committed to writing by the prophets and 
apostles, by the immediate inspiration of the Holy Spirit, and were 
communicated to the Church by God, and received by her as the 
infallible rule of faith and morals for man who is to be saved." 

[6] HOLL. (126): "We judge of the canonical authority of 
Scripture with reference to its doctrines, by the same proofs and 
arguments by which we decide in regard to its divine origin. For 
the Holy Scriptures are an infallible rule or canon of faith and 
morals, because they derive their origin immediately from God, 
and are designed by Him for canonical use. Wherefore, when the 
above-mentioned criteria convince us that the meaning or doctrine 
of Scripture has proceeded immediately from God, there is no need 
of an extended demonstration of canonical authority, so far as the 
doctrine of the canon is concerned. 

[7] HOLL. (126): "The canonical authority of Scripture, con 
sidered as to its doctrines, is proved by external and internal 
criteria, but especially by the internal testimony of the Holy Spirit 
illuminating the minds of men, through the Scriptures attentively 
read or heard from the mouth of a teacher." 

[8] CHEMN. (Ex. Trid. I, 85): "That this whole matter, in 
itself of such vast importance, might be perfectly secure against 
all imposture, God selected certain men to write, furnished them 
with many miracles and divine testimonials, that there might be 
no doubt that those things which they wrote were divinely inspired. 
Finally, these writings, divinely inspired, were at the time when 
they were written, by common consent, with public indorsement, 
presented, given, and intrusted to the Church, that she should, by 
all possible care and forethought, preserve them uncorrupted, 
transmit them thence from hand to hand, and intrust them to pos 
terity. And as the ancient Church, in the time of Moses, Joshua, 
and the prophets, so also the primitive Church in the time of the 
apostles, could give certain testimony as to which writings were 
divinely inspired. For she knew the authors whom God com- 


mended to the Church by peculiar evidence; she knew also what 
those things were that were written by them, and, from what she 
learned orally from the apostles, could decide that those things 
which were written were the very same doctrine which the apostles 
orally delivered. . . . The Scriptures, therefore, derive canonical 
authority principally from the Holy Spirit, by whose impulse and 
inspiration they were .written; secondarily, from the writers them 
selves, to whom God gave clear and peculiar proofs of their truth; 
finally, from the primitive Church, as a witness, in whose day these 
writings were published and approved. Now this testimony of the 
primitive Church concerning the divine inspiration of the Scrip 
tures has been handed down in perpetual succession to posterity, 
and carefully preserved in certain ancient historical records; so that 
the Church in subsequent ages is the guardian of the testimony of 
the primitive Church concerning the Scriptures. There is, there 
fore, the greatest difference between the testimony (1) of the primi 
tive Church in the times of the apostles, that (2) of the Church 
in the first centuries, which received the testimony of the primitive 
Church, and (3) that of the present Church concerning the Scrip 
tures; for if what now is and formerly was the Church, can show 
the testimony of those who received and knew the testimony of the 
early Church concerning the true Scriptures, we give our assent to 
her as to a witness proving her assertions. But she does not possess 
the power of determining or deciding anything concerning the 
sacred books of which she cannot adduce clear documentary proof 
from the testimony of the primitive Church." 

As to the manner in which the primitive Church proceeded in 
this matter, CHEMN. (Ex. Trid. I, 87) thus expresses himself: 
" The testimony of the primitive Church, in the times of the apos 
tles, concerning the genuine writings of the apostles, the immedi 
ately succeeding generations constantly and faithfully retained and 
preserved; so that when many others afterwards were brought for 
ward, claiming to have been written by the apostles, they were 
tested and rejected as supposititious and adulterated, first, for this 
reason, that it could not be shown and proved by the testimony of 
the original Church either that they were written by the apostles, 
or approved by the living apostles, and transmitted and intrusted 
by them to the Church in the beginning; secondly, because they 
proposed strange doctrine not accordant with that which the Church 
received from the apostles, and was at that time still preserving 
fresh in the memory of all. 

[9] HOLL. (126): " But the canonical authority of Scripture, in 
reference to the original language, or the authentic Hebrew text 


of the Old and Greek of the New Testament, is indeed distinctly 
proved by the testimony of the primitive Church, but not by this 
alone. " ( 127) : We add to the testimony of the primitive Church 
the testimony of Scripture, its continued preservation for the profit 
able use of men, and the character of its style." 

The intent of this passage and the one quoted in the eighth note 
is the following: The internal and external criteria may indeed 
beget in us a human faith, but not a divine; the latter can be pro 
duced only by the testimony of the Holy Spirit. And this must 
not necessarily be obtained by the use of the original text: a trans 
lation will answer quite as well, since the power of the Holy Spirit 
lies in the sense and not in the letter of the Word. Wherefore, also, 
we cannot become divinely assured, in regard to the idiom in which 
any of the sacred books has been written, by an internal experi 
ence. For information on this point we are therefore referred to his 
torical evidence; and the state of the case thus appears to be, that 
the testimony of the Holy Spirit is necessary to assure us of the 
divinity of the Scriptures, to which must be added historical proofs 
to satisfy us as to the language in which a sacred book was written, 
as to its author, etc. For BR. (112) thus expresses himself: "The 
internal illuminating power of the Scriptures is associated with the 
sense in every language, in such a manner, that it does not point 
out precisely the words of the original text as essentially different 
from other equivalent words of the same or any other language, 
text or version. But the other criteria, which prove the inspira 
tion of the doctrine contained in Scripture, either do not at all relate 
to the material part, or the words, of Scripture, but only to the for 
mal part, or the doctrine; or, when they do in some degree relate 
to the words and their connection, and are employed to prove in 
general that God is the author of the words of Scripture in any 
idiom, whatever it may be, they still cannot clearly indicate the 
precise words and letters in which each book of Scripture was orig 
inally committed to writing. There remains, therefore, the testimony 
of the Church, which does not, indeed, confer canonical or normative 
dignity upon the books of Scripture in any particular language, 
nor does it by its own authority induce that reception of the divine 
faith by which the inspiration of that idiom is believed; but not 
withstanding this, inasmuch as it historically proves a certain 
idiom or writing to be the original of the books of Scripture, in 
which it received them as written by the sacred penman, thus 
producing a moral certainty in regard to it, it now joined with 
that which the Scriptures themselves teach, and with which the 
Holy Spirit intimately connects his own influence, holds a place 


in the discussion of the faith. As an example, HOLL. (127) ad 
duces the following: "When it is asked, Was the Gospel of Matt 
hew originally written in Greek or Hebrew ? this is a question not 
of Dogmatics, but of history. ... Of this fact the Primitive Church 
is a credible witness, for it fought upon earth under the banner of 
Christ, together with the writers then living in the flesh, and re 
ceived their autographs from their own hands. . . . Thus we seek 
from the Jewish Church evidence for the Hebrew original of the 
Old Testament, and from the primitive Christian Church for the 
original Greek of the New." 

It is still worthy of remark that it cannot be clearly understood, 
from the passages quoted from Hollazius and Baier, whether these 
theologians supposed that, as each individual can attain only by 
the testimony of the Holy Spirit unto divine faith in the revelation 
by Christ, so in like manner each individual can be convinced of 
the divinity of each single book of Scripture by the testimony of the 
Holy Spirit. The contrary might seem to be proved by the fact 
that the most of the theologians speak of the testimony of the Holy 
Spirit only when they are discussing the grounds upon which the 
authority of Scripture rests (so GRH. ); for when it is asserted that 
each individual attains to divine assurance of the authority of Scrip 
ture only through the testimony of the Holy Spirit, this is still 
somewhat different from the assertion that the canonicity of each 
separate book must be proved in the case of each individual by the 
testimony of the Holy Spirit. And Chemnitz, further, does not 
mention, in this connection, this testimony of the Holy Spirit; but, 
in order to prove the canonicity of the separate books, points only 
to the testimony of the earliest Church, which could appeal to the 
indorsement of the Apostles. And, finally, in all the investigations 
by the Dogmaticians, in regard to the canonicity of a single book, 
there is never any allusion to the testimony of the Holy Spirit (Lu 
ther s well-known expression of opinion, in regard to the Epistle of 
James, must not here be taken into the account), but they are all con 
ducted upon the basis of historical evidence. The true state of the 
case appears most probably to be, that the question whether the proof 
of the canonicity of a particular book is to be distinguished from 
the proof of the divine authority of Scripture in general, was never 
clearly brought home to the consciousness of our theologians; so that 
the passages quoted in this note, and in Note 6, are designed merely 
to preclude the error of supposing that the historical testimony of 
the Church can establish divine faith in the Scriptures in general. 

[10] Many theologians divide the books of the Old Testament 
into legal, historical, dogmatical, and prophetical. 


QUEN. (I, 236): "All those books, therefore, of the Old Testa 
ment, and only those, are canonical, which (1) were written by the 
prophets and in the prophetic spirit, i. e. , by immediate Divine in 
spiration (Luke 16 : 29; Rom. 1 : 2; Eph. 2 : 20; 2 Pet. 1 : 19, 21); 
(2) and written in the original Hebrew tongue, then vernacular to 
the Jews, with the exception of a few sections in Daniel, Ezra, 
Nehemiah, and Jeremiah, that are extant in Chaldee; (3) contain 
infallible truth, in all points most exactly self -consistent; (4) which 
were divinely committed to the Jewish Church for perpetual canon 
ical use, received by it, regarded as canonical, preserved and faith 
fully handed down to the times of Christ; (5) a, approved, cited, 
and commended by Christ and the Apostles; and 6, as a canon or 
rule of faith and morals, transmitted unto us by the primitive 

[11] CHEMN. (Ex. Trid. I, 91): "The reason why those books 
have been denied canonical authority is obvious. For some of 
them were written after the time of the prophets, when the people 
of Israel no longer had prophets, such as the ancient ones were; 
and they were written by those who had not the divine testimonies, 
as the prophets had, concerning the truth and authority of their 
doctrine. Some of these books, indeed, bear the names of prophets, 
but do not possess certain proofs of having been written by those to 
whom they are attributed. This is the manifest reason why they 
have been removed from the canon of Scripture. The most ex 
tensive investigations in regard to the separate canonical and apoc 
ryphal books of the Old and New Testaments are to be found in 
GRH., vol. ii, loc. i, c. vi-xi. 

[12] We find that the earliest Dogmaticians insist more than 
the later upon the difference between these and the other un 
doubtedly canonical books. The most strenuous of all is CHEMN. 
(Ex. Trid. I, 192): " I have cited the testimony of the ancients, 
not only that the catalogue of those writings of the New Testament 
may be known which have not sufficiently sure, strong, and con 
sentaneous proofs of their authority, but more especially that the 
reasons may be known why there should have been any doubt 
concerning them. (1) Because the ancients did not possess sure, 
strong,, and consentaneous evidence that the original apostolic 
Church bore testimony that these books were approved by the 
apostles and recommended to the Church. (2) Because it does 
not certainly appear, by the testimony of the earliest and an 
cient Church, whether these books were written by those whose 
names they bear; but they have been regarded as published by 
others under the name of apostles. (3) Since some of the ancients 


ascribe some of these books to the apostles and others advance a 
different opinion. This matter, then, inasmuch as it was not in 
dubitably certain, has been left undetermined. This whole contro 
versy depends upon the sure, strong, and consentaneous evidence 
of the earliest and ancient Church; for, when this is wanting, the 
Church in after times, without the aid of clear and positive docu 
mentary evidence, can no more create a certainty out of an uncer 
tainty than it can make truth out of falsehood." Chemnitz 
therefore classes those writings of the New Testament, in regard to 
whose canonical authority some doubts are entertained, with the 
apocryphal books, and applies to them all, without exception, 
what was said concerning such parts of the Old and New Testa 
ments in Note 5. It is, however, not hereby denied that there 
may be a certain difference in value between the apocryphal books 
of the Old and New Testaments, but it is only asserted that these 
writings are not to be placed in the same category with the canon 
ical books. For, as we see, Chemnitz insists upon the principle 
that only those books are to be regarded as canonical in regard to 
which we possess the most specific and perfectly consentaneous 
evidence: (1) that they were recommended to the Church by 
apostles, and (2) that they really are the production of the 
authors whose names they bear. But the theologians who im 
mediately succeeded him began, appealing to the voice of the 
Church in past ages, to regard these books as canonical, although 
they did make some distinction in regard to them. Thus the 
Magdeburg centuriators (Gun. II, 184) say: "There were some 
writings disseminated throughout the Church during this century 
in the name of the apostles or their disciples, of which some were 
not generally received, owing to doubts in regard to them, but were 
afterwards received among the number of the Catholic writings, 
and others which were altogether rejected as apocryphal. Of the 
former kind are the epistle of James, etc." And HUNNIUS (in 
GRH. ib.): "We nevertheless acknowledge that the apocryphal 
books of the New Testament merited more favor and approbation 
from the primitive Church than the apocrypha of the Old Testa 
ment. Wherefore many of the Fathers, who excluded from the 
canon certain books of the Old Testament, excluded no book of the 
New Testament, but made them all canonical." If we inquire 
into the reason why this was done, it appears to be the following 
(although we find it nowhere distinctly expressed), that an abso 
lute agreement was no longer demanded, or this circumstance was 
ignored and reference had merely to the second requisite men 
tioned by Chemnitz; and even this was not regarded as absolutely 


necessary to establish the canonical authority of a book. For 
Mentzer already (in GRH. II, 185) says: "The books of the New 
Testament that are called ecclesiastical or apocryphal we receive as 
deserving to be regarded as canonical, and as having equal norma 
tive authority with the rest. We add, however, the qualifying term 
almost for this reason, that in the primitive Church some per 
sons occasionally objected to these books because it could not be 
certainly known by whom they were written or published. And 
SCHROEDER (also in GRH. II, 185): "There are certain books of 
the New Testament called by some apocryphal, but for scarcely 
any other reason than because it was doubted concerning them, 
not whether they were written by the inspiration of the Hoi} 
Spirit, but whether they were published by the apostles to whom 
they are ascribed. But inasmuch as the doubt concerning them 
did not relate so much to their original Divine author, viz. , the 
Holy Spirit, as to the writers or secondary authors, and as their 
authority, in the face of this doubt, was abundantly sustained by 
the principal and earlier fathers of the Church, they are received 
generally as of equal authority with the canonical. For, that a 
book may be regarded as canonical, it is not necessarily required 
that the secondary author, or writer, be manifest; it is sufficient if 
the prime author or dictator, viz., the Holy Spirit, be manifest; for 
the books of Judges, Ruth, and Esther are canonical and yet their 
writers are unknown " From this time, therefore, these books 
have been thus regarded by nearly all, as by GRH., e. g. (II, 186) : 
"(1) There is, indeed, some difference to be made between the 
books that are contained in the New Testament. For it cannot be 
denied that some of them were, at times, objected to by some in 
the early Church. (2) These books are inappropriately called 
apocryphal, as we can show by a threefold argument: (a) Because 
the doubts concerning them in the primitive Church did not so 
much relate to their canonical authority as to their secondary 
author; (b) Because even this doubt was not entertained concern 
ing them by all the churches or teachers, but only by some. Two 
manifest points of difference are therefore discernible between the 
apocrypha of the Old Testament and those books which some call 
the apocrypha of the New Testament. The authority of the former 
was rejected by the whole Church, but it was only some in the 
Church who doubted the authority of the latter; (c) The fathers 
who treated as such the apocrypha of the Old Testament did not 
exclude any book of the New Testament from the canon. (3) In 
teaching we may distinguish between the canonical books of the 
New Testament of the first and second rank. Canonical books of the 


first rank are those concerning whose authors or authority there 
never was any doubt in the Church, but which by common con 
sent were always regarded as canonical and divine. Canonical 
books of the second rank are those concerning whose authors 
doubts have sometimes been entertained by some persons in the 
Church." Precisely in the same strain QUEN. (I, 235): "We 
call those books of the New Testament protocanonical, or of the 
first rank, concerning whose authority and secondary authors there 
never was any doubt in the Church; and those deuterocanonical, 
or of the second rank, concerning whose secondary authors (not 
their authority, however, ) there were at times doubts entertained 
by some. There was doubt, I say, and discussion concerning 
these books, yet not among all, merely among a few; not at all 
times, only occasionally. And these doubts had not reference so 
much to their divine authority or primary author, the Holy Spirit, 
as to their secondary authors." And HOLL. (131) at last no 
longer finds this distinction necessary; " since at the present time 
all evangelical teachers assign divine authority to these deutero 
canonical books, there seems to be no occasion any longer for that 

The assertion that the authority of these books had never been 
doubted is contradicted by BR. (120) : " It cannot indeed be denied 
that some of the ancients did so doubt in regard to these writers, as 
to refuse to them the authority that belongs to inspired books;" 
but he also says concerning them: "They are not ignored when we 
are asked for the rule of faith, but they have authority in such case 
by common consent at the present day among Christians, especially 
those of our confession." He does not go into the special proof of 
this position, it is true, but probably for the reason that he did not 
regard the doubt raised by so few as of sufficient importance to 
make this necessary. 

[13] In reference to the gospels of Mark and Luke, CHEMN. 
(Eq. Trid., I, 87) remarks: "That Mark and Luke, who were not 
apostles, were divinely called to write the gospel, Augustine thus 
explains, lest namely it should be thought that, in reference to 
the preaching and reception of the Gospel, it made any difference 
whether those proclaimed it who followed the Lord while here in 
the flesh as disciples and servants, or those who believed what they 
clearly learned from these; and that it was providentially so ar 
ranged by the Holy Spirit, that to some of those who followed the 
apostles authority was given, not only for preaching, but also for 
writing the Gospel," etc. 





13. What are Articles of Faith f 

E whole subject matter of revelation naturally divides 
itself into single propositions, which we call articles of 
faith. " An article of faith is a part of the doctrine, revealed 
in the written Word of God, concerning God and divine things, 
proposed to the sinner to be believed in order to his salva 
tion." HOLL. (43) [1] Taken together, these articles form the 
sum of what the Christian is to believe, [2] and they are 
closely connected together, standing in the same relation to 
the general contents of revelation as the members of a body to 
the body itself. The articles of faith have their origin solely 
in the Holy Scriptures ; [3] but, inasmuch as their contents 
embrace some truths which could not be known in any other 
way, and others of which some knowledge may be gained by 
the light of nature ; and, inasmuch as all the truths contained 
in them are not of equal importance for our salvation, and do 
not stand in equally intimate connection with it, the articles 
of faith may be divided into, 

I. The pure articles (which are known only by divine revela 
tion), and the mixed (which are manifest not merely from revela 
tion, but also from the light of nature. BR. (43). [4] 

II. The fundamental and non-fundamental. 

HOLL. (46): " TJie fundamental articles are parts of the Chris 
tian doctrine so necessary to be known that, when they are not 
known, the foundation of the faith is not savingly apprehended 
or retained by man ; and when they are denied by him, to 
that same extent it is overturned." [5] 

(53): "Tlie non-fundamental articles are parts of the Christian 
doctrine which one may be ignorant of or deny, and yet be 
saved." [6] But the fundamental articles are again divided 
into "primary, without the knowledge of which no one can 
attain unto eternal salvation, or which must be known in 


order for any one to hold the foundation of the faith and se 
cure salvation ;" [7] and " the secondary, which one may be 
ignorant of, but dare not deny, much less oppose, without in 
jury to the foundation of the faith." QUEN. (I, 243). [8] 

The whole of the articles of faith the Church has collected 
in the Symbols. These contain the confession of faith which 
the Church has put forth at different times, and are therefore 
divided into the symbols of earlier and later times. [9] 

[1] HOLL. (43): "The term, article, is derived from artus, and 
this from arcto. It properly signifies members of the body closely 
joined together, as the joints of the fingers closely cohere. Meta 
phorically, the word article is applied to the parts of the doctrine of 
faith, which are most intimately joined together." QUEN. (I, 241) : 
" So that articles of faith are parts of the doctrine of faith, divinely 
revealed for our salvation, which are most intimately united to each 
other and to the whole, as the parts or joints of a finger, and into 
which the whole structure of the Christian religion may be resolved, 
as a finger into its joints. And their connection is so intimate 
that, when one is removed, the rest cannot continue sound and 
whole. The word is sometimes taken in a wider, and sometimes 
in a narrower sense. HOLL. (44): "Collectively, it signifies a whole 
head of doctrine; distributwely, any assertion or enunciation which 
constitutes a part of Christian doctrine. The Christian doctrine is 
divided into heads or theological loci, and these again into certain 
theses. The heads of doctrine are called articles of faith, as well as 
the theses under the separate heads; e. g., the theological locus 
[general topic] concerning Christ is called an article of faith, and 
the proposition, Christ, in the flesh, sitteth at the right hand of 
God, is also called an article of faith." Sometimes, merely the 
mysteries of the faith are meant by the articles of faith. BR. (42) : 
" It is certain that the term, article of faith, is sometimes used in 
a stricter sense, as accurately denoting the mysteries of faith neces 
sary to be believed in order to salvation, namely, the pure articles, 
and of these the fundamental alone. 

[2] QUEN. (I, 241): "The subjects with which the articles of 
faith are occupied are TO, mara, the credenda, the things to be believed 
as such. For a distinction must here be made between the historical 
and the dogmatical, and between the moral doctrines, which teach 
what is to be done or avoided, and the doctrines of faith, w r hich 
treat of what is to be believed or not believed. For although faith, 
generally viewed, may have respect to all that is contained in the 


Word of God, whether it be of an historical or moral or dogmatical 
character; yet it has nevertheless a special reference to the doctrines 
of faith or to the things to be believed, as such." 

GRH. (VII, 165): "Since those things which are propounded in 
the Scriptures as matters of faith, are not of one kind, but some 
pertain to the faith directly and per se, and others in certain respects 
and remotely, such as historical descriptions of deeds performed by 
the saints, so not all the matters contained in the Scriptures can be 
regarded as articles of faith, strictly and accurately speaking, but 
only those doctrines the knowledge of which is necessary to salvation." 
. . . And, after an appeal to Thomas Aquinas: " If the Jesuits in 
the Ratisbon Colloquium had observed this principle of the teacher, 
they never would have blurted forth the assertion: It is an article 
of faith, that the dog of Tobias wagged his tail. " 

If the Dogmaticians found it necessary, over against the Roman 
ists, to guard against too wide a use of the term, "articles of faith," 
they found it equally necessary, at a later day, in opposition to 
Calixtus, to guard against a too narrow use of the same expression. 
After the example of Bonaventura, he divided the doctrines into 
antecedent, constituent, and consequent. In the first class he in 
cluded everything that man can know by means of his reason, with 
out the aid of revelation; in the second, all in the strict sense con 
stituting the faith, and standing in special relation to the salvation 
provided by Christ, and that cannot remain unknown without peril 
to salvation. In the third class he included all those doctrines 
which are derived only by inference from the special doctrines of 
the faith. The term "articles of faith" he applied only to those 
of the second class. * The constituent articles of faith are those 
which, in themselves and their substance, so to speak, and as divinely 
declared, must be known and believed, from the necessity both 
of means and of the command. . . . The knowledge of the ante 
cedents and consequents is not a matter for every one, but only for 
the more advanced." ... In opposition to him, therefore, the 
distinction was made, that everything contained in the Scriptures 
that refers to the faith is an article of faith. As Calixtus further 
maintained: "That the Apostles Creed sufficiently comprehended 
all the articles of faith, so that the ignorance of other doctrines 
might be regarded as by no means harmful to salvation;" and: 
That the Apostles Creed was a mark for distinguishing not only 
Christians from the heathen, but also the orthodox or Catholics 
from heretics; so that whoever received the Apostles Creed should 
be considered members of the Catholic Church and subjects of the 
kingdom of Christ, and were by no means to be condemned as her- 


etics, whatever errors they might entertain," he is answered by 
the statement (QuEN. I, 30): The Apostles Creed is not an ade 
quate test of the doctrines that must be believed in order to salva 
tion, for many articles especially necessary are omitted, as: Of 
Original Sin, Redemption, the Personal Union, the Universality of 
the Grace and Merit of Christ, Justification by Faith, the Imputa 
tion of Christ s Righteousness, etc." 

[3] HOLL. (44): "A true article of faith must be (a) revealed 
in the written Word of God; (6) have reference to the salvation of 
man; (c) be intimately connected with the remaining doctrines of 
the faith; and (d) be not apparent to unaided reason." QUEN. 
(I, 242): "For it is possible for doctrines to be perspicuously and 
plainly propounded in Scripture, while their subjects, peculiar to 
faith, may not be clearly apprehended, as the mystery of the 
Trinity, etc. , etc. , since by the light of nature they would never 
have been known; whence faith is said to be occupied with such 
things as are not seen. Heb. 11: 1." 

In opposition to the assertion of the Socinians: "Whatever is 
absolutely necessary to salvation, must necessarily be with simple 
and entire literalness written in the Scriptures, we have the state 
ment of CAL. (I, 804): "Although we acknowledge that those 
things which must be believed in order to salvation ought to be 
clearly taught and exhibited in the Holy Scriptures, so that they 
may be drawn thence by all, yet we do not admit that they are 
there expressed precisely, or literally, so that those things which 
are deduced by easy, ready, and obvious inference from the Holy 
Scriptures, are not to be considered as articles of faith and neces 
sary to be believed." 

[4] QUEN. (I, 242): "There are some doctrines in Scripture 
which are simply KIOTO, (matters of faith), and cannot be at all 
learned from reason, but are infinitely above it; there are also some 
things to be believed which, although they are revealed in Scripture 
and necessary to be known, are nevertheless of such a nature that 
even reason by the use of her own principles could attain some sort 
of knowledge of them ; hence arise the pure and mixed articles. The 
former are derived from the Word of God alone and are simply 
matters of faith, as the article concerning the Trinity, etc., etc. ; the 
latter, although they may be known in some degree from the light 
of nature, are nevertheless purely matters of faith, in so far as they 
are known by divine revelation ; e. g. , that God is, etc. , is known 
from evident proofs, and is believed on the authority of the divine 
revelation. Yet all such things as may be known to some extent 
by the light of nature, are not matters of faith so far as they are appre- 


hendcd by the aid of the light of nature, but in as far as they are appre 
hended by the aid of divine revelation." In like manner, HOLL. (45) : 
No article of faith formally considered, so far as it is an article of 
faith, is mixed; inasmuch as all articles of faith are dependent on 
divine revelation, and therefore, with respect to their formal object, 
are not naturally apprehended." 

Of the pure articles of faith HOLL. (45) remarks: "They treat of 
the mysteries of faith that transcend the comprehension of unaided 
human reason. Mwm)/>>v (mystery) is derived from //vety, which 
signifies to have closed eyes, to compress the mouth, and conse 
quently to be silent. From ninv is formed pvteiv, which signifies to 
imbue any one with honest doctrine. Mvtiadai is the same as to be 
initiated into sacred things. /ziar w is a man initiated into sacred 
things, who either silently hears others and learns sacred tilings, 
or who is imbued with such knowledge of sacred things, that he 
may teach them, and is to be heard with reverential silence. 
To fjLvcrfipim^ in profane authors, signifies every secret matter that 
dare not be rashly mentioned, but especially the sacred Eleusinian 
mysteries of Ceres, guarded by the strictest silence. In sacred 
literature, mysteries are divine and supernatural matters, unknown 
to unaided reason, not intuitively perceived, but divinely revealed 
for the sake of our salvation." 

[o] QUEN. (I, 242): " The fundamental articles, or -those that 
cannot be unknown, or at least not denied, consistently with faith 
and salvation, are those which are intimately connected with the 
foundation of the faith. A foundation, generally speaking is, as N. 
Hunnius defines it, that which is the first in any structure, which 
lies beneath the whole structure, and is not sustained by anything 
lse." Thus the foundation of the faith is that upon which the 
faith, and, indeed, the whole of Christianity, as a house that is to 
be built and upheld, is based. And, inasmuch as a foundation is 
sometimes the same as a cause, a fundamental article is such a doc 
trine as serves to produce and establish faith and eternal salvation, or 
which explains some cause of faith and salvation. QUEN., accord 
ing to the method of Hunnius, distinguishes a threefold foundation. 
"1. Substantial, the object upon which man rests his confidence, 
from the beneficial effect of which he expects eternal salvation; or, 
it is the proper object of faith, which is the triune God, to be em 
braced by faith in Christ, the Mediator. 2. Organic, the Word of 
God, which is as a seed, out of which Christians are born again; thus 
it is also called a foundation, inasmuch as it is a means of generating 
faith, and a source of doctrine which lies underneath faith, and 
thus is a foundation of faith. 3. Dogmatic, that first part of the 


heavenly doctrine which is not referable to any other doctrine, but 
revealed for its own sake, and to which all other doctrines, as if 
revealed for its sake, are referred, and from which, as a sufficient 
and immediate cause, faith results. Hence heresy is not any and 
every error, contrary to the Word of God, but one that undermines 
or overturns the foundation of the faith." HOLL. (46): "A 
foundation of the faith is either real, i. e., substantial, or dog 
matic, i. e. , doctrinal. The substantial foundation of the faith and 
salvation is Christ, since He is the meritorious cause of obtaining 
from God forgiveness of sins and eternal life. In 1 Cor. 3: 11, 
Paul calls Christ the foundation of the building; for the whole 
Church rests upon Christ. . . . But since the Church is the 
assembly of all who believe and are to be saved, it may be legiti 
mately concluded that Christ is the foundation of faith and salva 
tion. The dogmatic foundation of the faith is the collection of 
doctrines divinely revealed, by which Christ, the substantial 
foundation of the faith, and the sources and means of salvation 
necessarily connected therewith, are set forth. By the foundation 
of the apostles and prophets, Paul means, in Eph. 2: 20, the doc 
trine taught by them. Moreover, the apostle teaches that Christ 
is the cornerstone, indicating that the doctrine of the prophets and 
apostles is in such a sense the foundation, that it rests upon Christ 
Jesus, as the ultimate cornerstone and foundation. . . . The 
substantial and the dogmatic foundation of the faith are not two 
foundations essentially contradistinguished from each other, nor 
do they differ as to their subject-matter, but as to our method of 
conceiving of them, in consequence of their different connotation. 
For Christ is the foundation, as to the subject-matter; the doctrine 
concerning Christ is the foundation, as to our knowledge. But the 
doctrine concerning Christ is nothing else than Christ, known by 
the intellect, and exhibited in a written or preached form, that 
others may know Him." 

[0] BB. (56): " E. g. , concerning the sin and eternal ruin of 
certain angels, concerning the immortality of the first man before 
the Fall, concerning Antichrist, concerning the origin of the soul, 
whether by creation or traduetion." But he adds to this: "At the 
same time, moreover, we are to be careful in regard to this matter, lest 
by embracing or professing error we rashly sin against divine revela 
tion and God Himself; especially, lest something be maintained, 
through the persuasion of others, contrary to conscience, whereby 
the foundation and the truth of one or more of the fundamental ar 
ticles of the faith are overturned. For thus, as by a mortal sin, 
faith and the Holy Spirit may be and are entirely driven away." 


[7] QUEN. (I, 243): "Among these fundamental articles of 
faith a certain order has been established in regard to the relation 
which they sustain to each other, and to an intermediate as well as 
an ultimate end; so that some are called primary and others sec 
ondary fundamental articles, some are said to be of the first, others 
of the second rank. 

The primary articles are subdivided. 1. By some into constitu 
tive and conservative articles. QUEN. (1,243): " Constitutive funda 
mental articles, according to N. Hunnius, are those which 
constitute the very foundation of the faith, or are the immediate 
cause of faith, as God will have all men to be saved and come to 
the knowledge of the truth." The conservative are those which do 
not, indeed, immediately cause faith itself, but which are neces- 
sarily implied in the immediate cause of faith; e. g. , that God is 
true and omnipotent, etc.; where he further observes that, "for 
any doctrine to constitute a foundation of the faith, it is necessary 
that it so fully and firmly maintain all the doctrines necessary to 
the production of faith, that none of them be wanting, nor any 
other doctrine admitted which may militate, directly or indirectly, 
against the doctrine in question, or render it in any wise inefficient 
in producing faith." 2. Others divide them "into (a) antecedent 
articles of faith, which do not, indeed, cause justifying and saving 
faith, nor are absolutely and immediately necessary to its exist 
ence, but which are, nevertheless, necessary to the complete and 
permanent establishment of those doctrines which produce and 
constitute the faith, which cannot be done when these are not 
taught or are unknown or denied (the doctrine of the existence of 
a divine revelation, of the existence of God, His power, etc. , etc. , 
of the divinity of the Mediator, the sinfulness of man, the resur 
rection of the dead, the last judgment); (/>), into constituent 
articles of faith, which immediately and most nearly relate to our 
salvation, and intrinsically constitute and cause faith (the Christian 
doctrines of the love which God bears to man, of the merit and 
universal atonement of Christ, and its application to individual 
cases); (c), into consequent articles of faith, which so necessarily 
follow established faith that, if they be not held, faith itself again 
is lost (the eternal duration of God, the executive justice of God, 
the efficacious sanctification of God, the intercommunication of 
attributes and operations in the person of Christ, the regal office of 
Christ, etc., etc.)." HULSEMAN (in QUEN. I, 243). 

[8] HOLL. (51): " The secondary fundamental articles are those, a 
simple want of acquaintance with which does not prevent our sal 
vation, but the pertinacious denial of, and hostility to, which over- 


turn the foundation of the faith. Such are the parts of the Christian 
doctrine in regard to the characteristic peculiarities of the Divine 
Persons, of the intercommunication of attributes in Christ, of origi 
nal sin, of the decree of election in view of final faith, of the justi 
fication of the sinner by faith alone, meritorious good works being 
excluded. (The latter sentence is thus further illustrated (p. 52) : 
"The justification of the converted sinner by faith in Christ, is a 
constitutive fundamental article of faith. But it may happen that 
a sinner, acknowledging and hating his sins, may repose entire 
confidence in Christ as a Mediator, and yet know nothing about 
the exclusion of good works. Who would condemn him ? But he 
who denies that the sinner is justified alone by faith in Christ, vio 
lates the primary fundamental articles concerning the grace of God 
and the merits of Christ. ) The comparison of Notes 7 and 8 
shows, moreover, that the Dogmaticians do not similarly divide the 
single doctrines of the same class. From the distinctions made in 
the fundamental articles there results what HOLL. (53) remarks: 
"All the fundamental -articles of faith must necessarily be known, 
but the grades of this necessity are different. For those articles of 
faith which not only enter into the very definition of saving faith, 
but are immediately operative in the production of faith, are the 
most necessary for man to believe in order to his salvation. Of the 
remaining articles, some are positively and directly, others nega 
tively and indirectly, necessary to be believed. And, in reference 
to those who believe, the same measure of knowledge will not be 
required of all. 

The distinction between the articles of faith, as fundamental 
principal and less principal, is met with already in Gerhard, who 
took it from the Scholastics; but in the fully developed form above 
cited, it first appears in N. Hunnius. Reformed theologians, in 
order to bring about a union of the two confessions, had denied the 
existence of a fundamental difference between them, and for this 
purpose had generalized the definition of the term fundamental as 
much as possible. To guard against falsely irenic attempts, Hun 
nius then wrote his Careful Examination of the Fundamental 
Doctrinal Difference between the Lutherans and the Calvinists. 
Wittenberg, 1626." 

[9] QUEN. (I, 21): "A summary of true religion (and of the 
articles of faith) is contained in the Symbols, embracing the Chris 
tian faith ; these are either ancient, or oecumenical, received through 
out all Christendom" (Apostles Creed, the Nicene, Constantino- 
politan, Ephesian, Chalcedonic, and Athanasian Creeds), or more 
m recent and, by reason of their less solemn sanction, particular (the 


Unaltered Augsburg Confession, the Apology, the Smalcald Arti 
cles, the Catechisms of Luther, and the Formula of Concord). 

In regard to the relation of the earlier to the later symbols, HOLL. 
remarks (Comp. 7): "Those which were approved by the unani 
mous consent of the whole Catholic Church, viz., the three oecu 
menical symbols, possess far greater authority than those which 
have received the sanction and approbation of only a few particular 

As to the meaning of the word Symbol. CAL. (I, 101) : " They are 
called symbols because they were the tokens of the ancient Church, 
by which the orthodox could be distinguished from the heterodox." 
HOLL. (54): "They are public confessions, drawn up after much 
deliberation and consultation, in the name of the Church, by ortho 
dox men, with reference to certain articles of faith, so that the 
members of the orthodox Church might be removed from the ignor 
ance and heretical wickedness of infidels, and be preserved in the 
proper profession of the faith." As there are a number of them, 
HUTT. (Comp. 6) remarks: "Our churches recognize many sym 
bolical books, but only as the same kind of evidence for the doctrine 
of their day." 

In reference to the relation sustained by the Symbolical Books to 
the Scriptures, cf. the FORM. CONG. (Of the Compendious Rule and 
Guide, 7): " There is thus a very clear distinction made between 
the Holy Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments and all other 
writings; and the Holy Scriptures are acknowledged as the only 
judge, rule, and guide by which, as by a Lydian stone, all doctrines 
are to be tried and adjudged, whether they be godly or ungodly, 
true or false. But the other symbols and other writings ... do 
not possess decisive authority, . . . but merely furnish testimony 
for our religion and explain it, and show in what manner at partic 
ular times the Holy Scriptures were understood and explained, in 
regard to controverted points, by the learned men who then lived 
in the Church. This relation was not discussed, however, in the 
works of the Dogmaticians until the time of Hutter; and the same 
was the case with the question as to the importance and necessity 
of the symbols. The relation, as it was regarded at the end of the 
orthodox period, is thus expressed by HOLL. (56): "The Holy 
Scriptures and the Symbolical Books differ; because: (1) The Holy 
Scriptures were communicated by immediate inspiration from God 
to holy men of God, led by the Holy Spirit. The Symbolical 
Books are sacred writings, composed by orthodox men, divinely 
endowed with the privilege of mediate illumination (in a strict sense 
no symbol of the church can be called inspired). For although. 


these orthodox men conceived the symbol mentally and committed 
it to writing, by illumination of the Holy Spirit, yet they did not 
write by a special, extraordinary, and immediate inspiration of God, 
but were endowed and instructed by God through an ordinary and 
mediate illumination. Nor were the single words of the Symbolical 
Books actually dictated to them by the Holy Spirit, but by the 
assistance and direction of God they themselves discovered suitable 
words and applied them to the divine doctrines. (2) The Holy 
Scriptures are worthy of belief on their own account, and, to estab 
lish their authority, need no earlier source by which they may 
be proved. The Symbolical Books are worthy of belief because of 
their harmony with the revealed Word of God. (3) The Holy 
Scriptures, by virtue of their divine, canonical authority, constitute 
an infallible rule whereby true doctrines are distinguished from 
false. The Symbolical Books have ecclesiastical authority, and by 
virtue of this are called a rule, namely, with regard to the public 
profession of faith, by which we declare the unanimous consent of 
the Church in doctrine. (4) The Holy Scriptures adequately con 
tain all that is to be believed and practiced; no Symbolical Book 
embraces fully all the doctrines and moral precepts (but, by reason 
of the time and occasion when and on account of which the Sym 
bolical Books were written, those particular doctrines were discussed 
which were then controverted and chiefly assailed)." And, inas 
much as the Symbolical Books are called inspired by some theolo 
gians, HOLL. further remarks (58): " The Symbolical Books are, it 
is true, called by some authors inspired, (a) by virtue of their object, 
since they contain and expound the Word of God, formerly com 
municated by immediate inspiration to the prophets and apostles, 
and elicit something by legitimate inference from the Word of God; 
(6) in view of their mediate illumination, for we do not doubt that 
God exerted a special influence upon the minds of the godly, 
learned men who wrote the Symbols of the Church, illuminated 
their minds and inclined their wills, so that they conceived and 
wrote most true and wholesome doctrines." 

Of the necessity of the Symbolical Books (Id. 59): "The Symbolical 
Books are necessary, not absolutely but hypothetically, for the con 
dition of the Church, which was induced by weighty reasons to 
their publication, (a) to establish solid, permanent, and firm con 
cord in the Church of God, so that there may be a certain com 
pendious form or type approved by universal consent, in which the 
common doctrine, which the churches of the purer doctrine profess, 
collected from the Word of God, may be contained; (6) to furnish 
an account of the Christian religion, if it be demanded by the civil. 


authority; (c) to distinguish the true members of the Church from 
her enemies, the heretics, and schismatics." In regard to obliga 
tion to the Symbolical Books, HOLL. remarks (59): " He who is a liv 
ing member of the Church, and designs to fill the office of public 
teacher in it, may be bound by the superior magistrate to subscribe 
under oath, the Symbolical Books; in order that, as he is publicly 
to teach in the Church, he may be required to adhere to the 
universally acknowledged profession, exposition and defence of 
the common doctrine. 




14. Division of the Subject. 

HE chief design of the creation of man, and that of revela 
tion also, is. that God mav be known. [1] Theology, 
therefore, must begin with the doctrine concerning God. [2] 

The doctrine concerning God may be divided into (1) The 
doctrine of the existence, the nature, and the attributes of God. 
"(2) ThVdoctrine of the particular jnanner in which God sub 
sists, "i. e. Jhe doctrine of God as triune,. (3) The doctrine of 
the works of God, i. e.. of Creation. (4) The doctrine of the 
manner in which God preserves His works and cares for them, 
i. e., the doctrine of Providence. (5} The doctrine of the 
angels, as the ministering beings among the works of God. 



15. Preliminary Statement. The Natural and Supernatural 
Knowledge of God. 

THE fulljmd saving knowledge of God we obtain, of course, 
only from revelation. But aside from this there exists a 
knowledge of God, for we find it even among the heathen. 
We can therefore distinguish a twofold source from which the 
knowledge of God may be derived, the one, the volume of 


104 OP GOD. 

Nature, and the other, the volume of_the Scripturesj and the 
knowledge of God is accordingly both natural, and revealed 
or supernatural. [3] 

The natural knowledge is either innate or acquired, i. e., a 
certain knowledge of God is inborn, and this can be expanded 
and further confirmed by the contemplation of the works and 
ways of God in nature and history. [4] The knowledge thus 
arising, though in itself true, may nevertheless be corrupted 
and changed into error through the moral depravity existing 
in man ; [5] it is at best very imperfect, making known indeed 
something concerning God, c. g., His existence and somewhat 
of His attributes and will, but this never in its entire extent, 
and never in such manner as to give to man an absolute cer 
tainty, so as to furnish a trustworthy guide for his faith and 
life ; [6] much less does it suffice to secure his salvation. [7] 
The reason of this imperfection lies, however, in the depravity 
of human nature, which, since its fall, can no longer lift itself 
up to a perfect knowledge of God. All knowledge thus de 
rived we must therefore regard as the remnant of a knowledge 
which, but for the Fall, we would have possessed in full meas 
ure. [8] It serves, accordingly, rather to awaken in us a long 
ing after true and perfect knowledge (cognitio psedagogica), and 
in some measure to regulate our moral deportment, even be 
fore the knowledge communicated by revelation has reached 
us (cognitio psedeuticd) ; and it can also be profitably employed 
along with revealed knowledge (cognitio didactica). [9] _We 
still need revelation, therefore, in order to acquire fall and 
true knowledge. [10] 

[1] GRH. (Ill, 1): ( That this doctrine concerning God is neces- 
sary, is proved (1) by the design for which man was created. Just 
as all things else were created on account of man, so man was 
brought into being in order rightly to know and worship, to love 
and honor God his Creator. . . . (2) By the design for which 
God reveals Himself^ God, coming forth from the hidden seat of 
His majesty, nut only in the creation of the \vorld, but also and 
most of all in the revelation of His Word, out of His boundless 
goodness unto men reveals Himself, surely with no other aim than 
that men may rightly know God through this revelation, and may 
preserve and hand down to their posterity the true doctrine con 
cerning God, free from any intermixture of error and in its integ- 


rity." [MEL. begins his Loci of 1542: For this end man was 
created and redeemed, that he might be the image and temple of 
God, to proclaim God s praises."] 

[2] GRH. (ibid.): "As the Holy Scriptures are the only source 
of knowledge in Theology, so God, boundless in goodness, supreme 
in power, is the only and absolute source of existence, not only 
with reference to the Holy Scriptures themselves (in which the 
Word of God or the divine revelation is contained), but also with 
reference to the divine works concerning which Theology treats. 
The centre of all Scripture, the nucleus of Theology, the end and 
aim of our knowledge and desire, all these are one and the same. 
We pass, therefore, in convenient order, from the article concern 
ing the Scriptures to the article concerning the Nature of God and 
the Divine Attributes." 

QUEN. (I, 250): The chief end of man and of all Theology is 
Cod. mid the knowledge, worship, and enjoyment of God: with the 
doctrine concerning Him, therefore, we properly begin, when The 
ology is treated after the manner of a practical discipline." 

HOLL. (187): "As Theology is a practical science, we arc first 
of all to treat of its design. But as the aim of Theology is twofold, 
in part objective, that is, the infinitely perfect and supremely 
beneficent God, and partly formal, that is, the beholding and 
beatific fruition of God; so the objective end of Theology, namely, 
God, who thoroughly satisfies the desire of man, is first to be con 

[3] GRH. (I, 93): " Two things lead to the knowledge of God: 
the creature and the Scripture (Augustine)." 

HOLL. (188): "The knowledge of God is sought both by the 
light of Nature or Reason, and by the light of Revelation. 

[4] QUEN. (I, 251): "The natural knowledge of God is that by 
which man, without any special revelation, may know of himself, 
though very imperfectly, by the light of Nature and from the Book 
of Nature, that there is some supreme Divinity, that He. by His 
own wisdom and power, controls this whole universe, and that He 
has brought all things into being. 

GRH. (I, 93): "Innate knowledge is that common conception 
concerning God engraven and impressed upon the mind of every 
man by Nature, and hence from the womb, as though from prin 
ciples born within us or iwivair iw6iai- (which are nothing else than 
certain remains and epeiiria of the divine image, sparks and scintilla 
tions of that clear light which shone with full splendor in the mind 
of man before the fall), which also embrace some knowledge of God; 
as, that He is one, good, etc." (Ill, 42): "These scintillations 

106 OF GOD. 

therefore we refer to that internal Book of Nature, to which also 
belongs the book awKidjiaeu?, the internal testimony of conscience, 
which the scholastics call avv-ypvci? ; for from principles born within 
us there arises in the heart of every one this practical syllogism: 
He who leads an impious life shall experience the wrath and 
punishment of a divine judge. The reason of this lies in that 
which is by nature engraven upon all, i. e. , that there is a God, 
that God is to be worshiped, that God is the avenger of crimes. 
The conscience of the guilty adds: I have led a wicked life. " 

(Id., Ill, 42): " Natural knowledge is acquired by the human 
mind from the external Book of Nature., i. e., from the contempla- 
tion of the divine effects and ways, by the exercise of its natural 
powers." As such effects of the divine agency, GRH. enumerates 
(I, 94): "(1) The creation of things visible. (2) The~variety, 
beauty, and order of created things. (3) The supporting, govern 
ing, and preserving of created things. (4) The profuse bestow- 
ment of the various gifts which minister to the necessities of man 
and other living beings. (5) The notice and retribution of the 
avenging eye and hand of God. (6) The working of miracles. 
(7) The foretelling of future events. (8) The periodical overthrow 
of kingdoms. (9) The nature of the human mind. (10) The 
fragments of natural knowledge, and among these the distinction 
of good and evil. (11) The terrors, gnawings, and stings of con 
science. (12) The series of efficient and final causes. 

[MEL. (Loci, 1542) cites as proofs of the Divine existence^ 1. 
The Order of Nature, which could not have arisen or be maintained 
by accident, or have arisen from matter. The perpetuity of species, 
e. g. , that men are born of men, and cattle of cattle, is cited as one 
illustration. 2. The nature of the human mind. A senseless and 
irrational thing cannot be the cause of an intelligent nature. 3. 
Moral distinctions made universally by men. These could not 
have originated from matter. 4. The universality of the testi 
mony to God s existence. 5. Terrors of conscience, implying 
a Supreme Judge. 6. Organization of political society, which 
could not have arisen accidentally, but points to a divine mind, 
implanting within man the capacity and laws of order. 7. The 
series of efficient causes implying a First Cause. If the series were 
infinite, there would be no order among the causes, and none 
would necessarily cohere. 8. Final causes prove a designing mind. 
Everything in Nature is arranged with reference to an end.] 

[GRH. (Ill, 4) recapitulates proofs of philosophers and scholas 
tics: 1. The series of moving objects in this world implies a First 
Mover. 2. The order of efficient causes implies a First Cause. 3. 


The different degrees of good imply a Supreme Standard. 4. The 
direction of all things, even those that are irrational, towards a 
certain end. 5. The natural inclination of all men to believe that 
there is a Governor of the Universe, whom they call God. This is 
illustrated by the fact that, in sudden dangers, when men recog 
nize the impotency of human aid, they instinctively resort to 

QUEN. (I, 253): "The natural knowledge of God is twofold; 
partly j^ovror, or by nature impressed upon the minds of men in 
their very origin, innate and implanted^ by which men recognize God 
throu.L h certain principles born within them, as it were by certain 
fragments and remains of the divine image, without any research 
or operation of the mind; partly emKryro^, or acquired, because it is 
evolved through the inborn principles of nature through a process 
of reasoning and the accurate contemplation of created things, or 
gathered from the works of God in creation and those traces of 
divinity which are scattered throughout the universe. The former 
^is called subjective; the latter, objective. The former all men, even 
infants, possess; but the latter is notlbund in all. The former is 
propagated by generation; the latter by the instruction of others, or 
also by personal culture and investigation. The former may be 
called constitutional knowledge, for it belongs to us after the manner 
of a constitutional tendency, even before the use and exercise of 
reason ; the latter, actual, because it exerts itself and is obtained by 
reasoning and research." Compare also the remark of GRH. (Ill, 
46) : " Finally, we observe, that when Ostorodr.s says that men do 
not obtain whatever knowledge they have of God or of divinity 
from nature, or from the contemplation of created things, but alone 
by hearing and from the teaching of others, the word, hearing, 
is ambiguous. For if Ostorodus means that for all knowledge 
of God there is required a special manifestation of God through the 
Word, this we totally deny; but, if by the word, hearing, be under 
stood the doctrine and precepts derived from our ancestors, who 
followed nature alone as a teacher, then we say that this, no less 
than the principles connate with us, and also the contemplation of 
created things, belongs to natural knowledge. But, although the 
arguments are distinct by which we demonstrate as well the innate 
as the acquired natural knowledge of God; yet, when the Photini- 
ans deny both, it is sufficient for us to prove against them that 
there is some natural knowledge of God, from whatever source de 
rived, whether from natural instinct, or intuition, or the instruction 
of others, who have followed Nature alone as a teacher. 

CAL. , in opposition to the Socinians, thus sums up the proposi- 

tions in regard to the natural knowledge of God: "(1) That man, 
destitute of the revealed Word of God, can attain, by the use of 
sound reason, to some knowledge concerning God, His being and 
His general will or providence. (II, 61.) (2) That not only the 
faculty or the power of knowing God, but also a certain knowledge 
of God, belongs to us by nature. (II, 73.) (3) Although there 
does not belong to man a knowledge of God before the use and ex 
ercise of reason, so far as concerns a distinct notion or -mental con 
ception, yet we think it cannot be denied that there exists in man 
a certain disposition, or a kind of constitutional tendency, a certain 
7fAe/w<7i<r of intellectual power left in man after the Fall, by the use 
of which man can, to some extent, recognize God without the help 
of a teacher. (II, 80.) (4) That it is known to man, not only 
naturally, but also per se, that there is a God." (II, 86.) 

The proof for the existence of an innate knowledge is drawn from 
Rom. 1: 19, and 2: 14, 15; also from the following reasons: " (1) 
From the connate distinction between good and evil that is stamped 
upon the minds of all; (2) From the dread of a supreme divinity 
naturally springing up in the hearts of men; (3) From the terrors 
of an evil conscience and the cheerfulness and security of a good 
conscience; (4) From the torments of conscience on account of a 
crime committed. . . . (5) From the unanimous consent of all 
nations; (6) From the secret inclination of all to some form of re 
ligion; (7) From moral precepts drawn from the light of nature." 
(QuEN. I, 253.) 

The acquired knowledge is proved from Rom. 1: 20; A^t.s 17- 9.7 

[5] QUEN. (I, 253): "That the natural knowledge "of God is 
true, is evident from this, that the apostle expressly calls it a^#a, 
Rom. 1: 18 sq., and with the addition, aM/tfeiav rov tfeou, v. 25, as 
that which springs from original truth; where, nevertheless, we 
must distinguish between the natural knowledge of God, considered 
in and through itself, and in so far as it has united with it imper 
fection, corruption of reason, and a proclivity to various errors. 
Viewed in the former light it is true, viewed in the latter it is 
"mingled through accident with falsehood. " 

[6] CAL. (II, 47): " The imperfection of the natural knowledge 
of God as to those things which are revealed in nature, and its 
nullity as to the supernatural mysteries of faith." 

QUEN. (I, 253): "The natural knowledge of God is imperfect 
mainly in two respects: (1) as regards its object, this being either 
altogether unknown (and here belongs the Gospel, which is a 
mystery hidden from the ages), or not fully known (and here be 
longs the doctrine of the Law, which man knows from natural 

/ . ZJ~ 

sources only in part); (2) As regards its subject, either not recog 
nizing God with sufficient constancy, or sometimes doubting con 
cerning Him in consequence of congenital corruption." 

CHMN. (Loci, I, 20): The natural knowledge of God either 
amounts to nothing, or is imperfect, or languid. It amounts to 
nothing, since all philosophy knows nothing whatever of the 
gratuitous promise of the forgiveness of sins; for the Son of God" 
has revealed this to the Church from the bosom of the Eternal 
Father, Jojin 1: 18; Matt. 11: 27; 1 Cor. 1: 21; 2: 7. It is imper- 
fect, for the heathen know only a small portion of the Law; but of 
the inner worship of the First Table, reason neither knows nor de 
termines anything for certain. Heathen philosophers teach of only 
external and civil topics, mingling with them many foolish para 
doxes, concerning which there is among them no agreement. It is 
languid, for although the fact that God exists and requires obe^ 
dience is impressed upon men s minds, nevertheless, the assent to 
this is not only feeble, but is often shaken by horrid doubts. An 
apt illustration is found in the Tusculan Disputations, where 
Cicero, discussing with Antony the immortality of the soul, says: \ 
Read diligently Plato s treatise concerning the immortality of the 
soul. Nothing will be left for you to desire. This I have done 
frequently, Antony replies; but, somehow or other, as long as I 
read I assent, but whenever I lay aside the volume and begin to 
reflect concerning the immortality of the soul, all my assent glides 
away. " 

In regard to the substance of what is known by the light of 
nature, QUEN. (I, 255): "The controversy here is not whether 
man, naturally or without revelation, can recognize <m, what 
and who is the true God, according to all the peculiarities of the 
divine nature; and whether he can naturally fully understand His 
providence and His special will in the government of the Church 
and in the eternal salvation of men: for all these things are to be 
sought only through the revealed Word. But the question is ] 
whether man can naturally know on, whether God be, and m general j 
recognize what that Divine Being isj_who is the cause of all things ..? y 
in nature, who is just, good, holy, is to be worshiped, etc. ; and j\ Jf 
so, whether man without a revelation can have any adequate 
knowledge concerning the true God or any true conceptions con- f\ 
cerning God, although in particular he may apply them improp 
erly, as e. g. , to that which is not truly God. 

With the last remark from Quenstedt compare the statement of 
Gerhard (I, 96): "We must distinguish between the conception 
of God, derived by the heathen mind from the contemplation of 

creatures, and the application of that conception; the former is 
^i > legitimate, the latter is far from being so. For, although they de- 
- vrive the conception of eternal power and divinity . . . from the 
[ NJ( Book of Nature, yet they do not rightly apply it to the one Jehovah, 
^^V. . . but they ascribe the same to irrational animals, serpents, 
"^L v^x^reptiles, etc. ; and inasmuch as they of their own accord devise a 
v | ^method of worship, they thereby worship the imagination of their 
own hearts and not the true God." 

Through the light of nature man attains, therefore, only "a par- 
uledge concerning the power, wisdom, goodness and providence 
GodT" GBH". (Ill, 60): " MarThas been deprived of the knowl 
edge of God, so far as the integrity of natural knowledge is concerned, 
for the greater part of it has been obliterated from his mind by sin; 
so far as its purity is concerned, for the knowledge yet remaining is 
very much obscured; and, in view also of the peculiar wickedness 
tof certain persons. 

[7] QUEN. (I, 261): "The natural knowledge of God is not 
^ ad equate to secure everlasting life, nor has any mortal ever been 
^redeemed, nor can any one ever be redeemed, by it alone. A"dts 
4: 12; Rom. 10: 18; Mark 16: 16; Gal. 3: 11; Ep_h. 4: 18; Gal. 4:8; 
Ep_h. 2: 12." 

MEL. (I, 9): "Although, in some way, the human mind comes 
to the knowledge of the fact that God punishes the guilty, never 
theless concerning reconciliation it knows nothing without the 
v revelation of the divine promise. 

V, [8] QUEN. (I, 254): " We must distinguish between the natural 
i ^$ knowledge of God, viewed in its original integrity, and the same in 
^>> txits fragmentary remains; the former is a perfect tifo-yvuaia, constitut- 
>>, I 4^2 |4PS a P ar t f the mental condition of our first parents, as graciously 
i created; the latter, on the other hand, is a partial and imperfect. 
^V^^ knowledge of God, still inherent in our corrupt nature since the 
X^ ij J S3 Fall. It is as it were a little spark of primeval light, a small drop 
a vast ocean, or an atom of the ashes of a splendid house in 

[9] CHMN. (Loci, Part I, 21): "The reasons why God imparted 

external knowledge of Himself to the minds of all men are^ 
(1) For the sake of external discipline, which God wished to be 

exercised by all men, even the unregenerate; (2) that God might 
be sought after (Acts 17: 27-30); . . . (3) that He might render 
men inexcusable (Rom. 1: 20)." 

CAL. (II, 40): " The use of the natural knowledge of GocUs (1) , 
Pedagogical, for seeking after the true God, who has manifested 
Himself through the Scriptures in the Church; (2) Psedeutical, for 


directing morals and external discipline both within and without 
the Church; (3} Didactic, because it contributes to the exposition 
and illustration of the Scriptures, if it be rightly employed." 
(Also II, 51): "The use of this doctrine (i. e., the topic concern 
ing the natural knowledge of God) is that we may understand 
whether we can by nature know anything of God, or what and 
how much we can thus know; lest we either deny those things 
which are naturally manifest, or ascribe too much importance to 
them: also, that we gratefully recognize this manifestation and 
cultivate this natural knowledge as the Book of Nature is daily un 
folded, and do not suppress it, or abuse it, but duly unite the Book 
of Nature with the Book of Scripture, and finally be confirmed and 
stimulated by the teaching and example of those who have applied 
themselves to the study of truth and virtue as here exhibited and 

[10] QUEN. (I, 268): "The supernatural or revealed knowledge 
of God is that saving knowledge of the triune God and of divine 
things, drawn from the written word of God r which has flourished 
from the beginning of the Church and wpfl flrflftfoed for human 

CHMN. (Loci Th., I, 22): "The saving knowledge of God 
through which we obtain eternal life, is that revealed through the 
Word, in which God makes known Himself and His will. To this 
revelation, God has bound His Church, which knows, worships, 
and glorifies God only as He has revealed Himself in this Word, 
so that in this way the true and only Church of God may be dis 
tinguished from all heathen religions." 

16. (1.) The Certainty of the Divine Existence. 
Although the divine existence is postulated in the natural 
human consciousness, which furnishes many proofs of it, [1] 
yet we become perfectly certain of it only through revelation. 


17. (2.) The Essence of God. 

Our knowledge of the essence of God (quid sit Pens) is also 
mainly derived from revelation, for the Holy Scriptures give 
us in His names, attributes, and works a description of God 
Himself. [3] And with the knowledge thus derived we must 
be satisfied, for we know concerning the essence of God noth 
ing more, and nothing more specific, than what the Holy 
Scriptures teach. We acquire, indeed, from this source no 

adequate and complete knowledge of the essence of God ; for 
this transcends our powers of comprehension, and for this 
reason the Scriptures declare the incomprehensibility of the 
divine essence. (1 Tim. 6: 16 ; 1 John 3: 2; Rom. 11: 33.) 
But we may very well be content with the knowledge imparted 
to us through the Holy Scriptures^ as we nevertheless learn 
therefrom as much about God and His essence as is needful 
for our salvation. [4] 

From what has been said, it is manifest in what sense God 

may be defined. He cannot be literally defined, i. e., we can- 

N not express in words what God is as to His essence, what He 

| is in Himself, because no adequate conception can be formed 

\ of Him ; but a definition of God, in a wider sense, may never 

theless be given, in so far, namely, as, upon the authority of 

the Holy Scriptures, a description of God may be presented, 

according to which we can most clearly distinguish between 

Him and other essences. [5] 

Upon the authority of the description of God given in the 
Holy Scriptures, we can thus define Him as an Infinity 
Spiritual Essence. [6] 

[1] See above, 15, Note 4. 

[2] GRH. (Ill, 40): "To some it may seem that this question 
in the Church is superfluous, since it is known and conceded by 
all that God exists, and there is no people, however barbarous, 
that denies that God exists, and that He is to be worshiped 
(though it may not know how to worship Him), and so the 
knowledge of God is naturally innate in all. . . . But, neverthe 
less, we must prove that God exists, (1) for the confutation of, 
those who deny that there is a God; (2) for the confirmation of 

_p_ur faith ( . .in great and severe temptations, says Chemnitz, 
we are all either Epicureans or Stoics; our mind must therefore be 
established by the consideration of the arguments which prove that 
there is a God, and that He exercises a providential care over 
human affairs); (3) for the perfecting of natural knowledge 
( . . . since the natural knowledge of God is imperfect and 
languid, and so must be confirmed, widened, and deepened from 
the Word divinely revealed. ) 

[3] CAL. (II, 110): "That God exists, special scriptural state 
ments testify, especially those which communicate His names, 
words, and works." 


-J7 <W&lf> & 


GRH. (Ill, 14): "To synonymies belong the names of God, in 
the exposition of which the principal part of the doctrine concern 
ing God consists, because our theology in this life is almost wholly 
grammatical, whence whatever we may know concerning God is 
called a name of God. . . . The names of God are general or 
special. In a general and wide sense, a name of God is whatever is 
predicated of Godj thus the term was employed by the ancients, 
who, under the designation of names, embraced also the attributes 
or characteristics." 

QUEN. (I, 268): " In determining the question what God is, we 
must first consider the divine names, some of which, either in view 
of their etymology or from the manner in which they are used in 
Scripture, indicate the essence of God, and are commonly called 
essential, as Jehovah, Jah, Elohim; others are derived from the 
divine attributes, as when God is called omnipotent, just, wise; 
others from the divine works, as when He is called Creator, Pre 
server, etc." 

[4] CHMN. (Loci Th., I, 24): "As we are not to think of God 
otherwise than as He has revealed Himself in the Word He has 
given, these questions (concerning the essence and the will of God) 
have certain prescribed limits, within which the human mind, 
contemplating God, must confine itself. For dangerous errors_ 
have arisen on this subject, for no other reason than because the 
point of view was not rightly taken, or because human curiosity in 
this discussion wandered farther than was meet." . . 

SELN. (I, 53): " It has been said that we ought to be content 
with the descriptions of God which are given by God Himself. 

ID. (I, 51): " Hilary says: We understand that only that is to 
be heartily believed concerning God, in reference to which He Him 
self authoritatively testifies that it is to be believed concerning 
Him. What, therefore, God is absolutely, and what is His nature 
and substance, we know that no one can state, imagine, compre 
hend, or declare by an essential definition, either by any dialectic 
reasoning or by the keenness of the human intellect. For, since 
neither eye has seen, nor ear heard, nor have entered into the 
heart of man the things which God has prepared for those that 
love Him, how much less can the dulness of the human mind 
grasp God Himself? Whence many are accustomed to say, that 
it is easier to define what God is not, than what He is. 

Thus GRH. says (III, 15) of the divine majesty: ( The variety 
of divine names expresses the divine majesty. For since, in con 
sequence of its infinite perfection, the divine majesty cannot be 
fully recognized by us, therefore so many divine names are given 


in the Scriptures, that from these we may be led to something like 
a suitable recognition of the divine majesty." 

BR. (173): "It must be confessed that in this life we may not 
have a specific, proper, and adequate conception, well-defined and 
clear, of the divine esseuce; for we know but in part." 

[5] Thus already CHMN. asks (Loc. Th., I, 25), after the ex 
ample of the Scholastics: " If a definition must explain the nature 
of the thing defined so as to lead the mind, as it were, into the very 
thing itself, how then can God be defined ? " and answers; "The 
reply is easy : It is indeed true, concerning our knowledge of God 
in this life (1 Cor. 13: 12), that we see through a glass, darkly; 
and so in the definition it is said, He is of immense wisdom and 
power, L e., God is greater than we can imagine or declare. . . . 
But, in examining the definition we do not scrutinize those mys 
teries of the essence and will of God which He Avishes us to be 
ignorant of; but we gather a brief statement from what God has 
Himself revealed to us in His Word concerning His essence and 
will. And, since God surely wishes to be recognized and wor 
shiped as He has revealed Himself, that description of God is to 
be held, to which the mind reverts in prayer; for adoration is 
nothing but a confession, whereby we ascribe to the essence ad 
dressed in prayer all the attributes comprised in the definition. 
There is, therefore, a name of God occult and hidden, which is not 
to be searched out. There is, however, also a name of God made 
known that He wishes to be recognized, spoken about, praised, 
and worshiped." 

GRH. (Ill, 70) therefore distinguishes: "(I) Between a perfect 
definition, which exactly conforms to the accuracy of logical rules,. 
and a description drawn from the Scriptures. (2) Between 
knowledge and comprehension. That is comprehended which is 
perfectly known; that is perfectly known which is known so far as 
it can be known. We know God, indeed, but we do not compre 
hend Him, i. e., we do not perfectly know Him, because He is 
infinite. Here we must .note, however, that the knowledge of God 
derived from the Word is called perfect, as well by reason of its end, 
for it is sufficient for salvation, as by way of comparison with 
natural knowledge, Avhich is very obscure and imperfect. (3) 
Between the knowledge of God in this and in another life. . . . 
The latter, or intuitive definition is the most perfect of all, for we 
shall then see God in the future life, face to face. . . . (4) A nom 
inal definition may be given, but not an essential one." 

CAL. (II, 142) distinguishes in the same way between a defini 
tion rigidly taken and a definition broadly applied. 


GRH. (Ill, 68) proves the inadmissibility of a definition in the 
strict sense: "(1) From the want of a genus. That of which there 
is no true and proper logical genus cannot be defined, because the 
genus is an essential part of a definition. But God has no true 
and proper logical genus; because, if there were such a genus, that 
would be in the same terms essentially and equally predicated of 
God and of creatures, which cannot be done, because God as the 
Creator and the creature are separated from each other by an infi 
nite interval, and there is nothing that can be equally predicated 
of both. (2) From the divine perfection. God is the supreme 
Being, so He has nothing beyond Him; but whatever is properly 
defined is defined through something going before. . . (3) 
From a sufficient enumeration. If God may be properly defined, 
that would be either an essential or a causal definition. Essential 
it could not be, because that consists in genus and specific differ 
entia. But God has no name of the same genus with other beings, 
nor is His most simple essence composed of genus and differentia. 
Neither can it be a causal definition, since God is the cause of all 
things, but of God there is no cause." 

[6] This position is taken by Calovius, Quenstcdt, Koenig; 
while others, as Baier (173), Hollazius (229), thus define: God 
is a spiritual Being, subsisting of Himself; or, more concisely : 
God is an independent Spirit." 

The individual terms are explained as follows: 

(1) BR. (172): " By the term divine essence is meant that which 
is first thought of in God, and through which God is adequately 
distinguished from all other things, and which, in our mode of 
conception, is the root and source of all the perfections which, as 
attributes, are ascribed to God. 

(2) QUEN. (I, 284): "The term spiritual essence is a common 
conception. For the term essence is common to God and creatures, 
but belongs to God originally and independently, to creatures 
secondarily and by way of dependence. And the term spirit also 
is analogically predicated of God and angels, and also of the souls 
of men." (The difference that is observed when these two terms 
are predicated of God and of creatures respectively, is still more 
accurately indicated in the statement: " Essence, substance, spirit, 
and consequently the remaining attributes which are ascribed at 

" the same time to God and to creatures, are predicated of God and 
of rational creatures not <7www/*wf, univocally, nor <vjw//r, equivo 
cally, but avaUyw, analogically, so that they belong to God -pu-uf 
and absolutely, to creatures fovrtpug and by way of dependence, 
analogy being properly thus employed with reference to an intrinsic 


attribute. The term univocal, properly and strictly speaking, be 
longs to such things as have the name and the thing denoted by 
that name equally in common, no inequality interfering on account 
of the dependence of the one upon the other; equivocal, to such as 
have a common name but not the thing signified by the name; 
analogical, to such as have both the name and the thing designated 
by that name, but unequally, when the name and the thing belong 
to the one Trpwru? and absolutely, but to the other Aevrtpuf and by 
way of dependence.") (Id., 293.) 

(3) "But the predicate infinite expresses the peculiar conception; 
for by this God, as an infinite Spirit, is distinguished from angels 
and the souls of men, or finite spirits, and by this infinity of His 
own, God transcends all the bounds of being, so that He cannot be 
limited by time or place or any other thing, but, considered simply 
in His own nature and essence, He is of Himself and absolutely 
infinite. Nor do we speak of God as compounded, when we form 
both a common and a peculiar conception concerning Him. For 
that is a distinction of the reason only, and not a real one. (God 
is infinite, not by virtue of quantitative extension, since He is de 
void of all quantity, but by virtue of essence and perfection.)" 

The independence is thus explained by BR. (173): "For, as by 
this, God is adequately distinguished from all other things, so 
there is nothing that you can earlier conceive of in God, as a pecu 
liar and specific conception, than this, that He is not from another, 
and so exists of Himself and necessarily. Proof- texts: Isaiah 44: 6, 
compared with Isaiah 41: 4; Rev. 1: 17." 

The more popular definition of God (definitio Dei nominalis) is: 
"By the term, God, is understood the first Being, because He is of t 
Himself and is the cause of all other things, and because He pre 
serves and governs all things;" concerning which HOLL. remarks 
(187): "All men in the present life discover in themselves that 
they do not and cannot otherwise conceive of God than as related 
to created things, as the first Being, because from Him is the 
cause of all other beings, and He preserves and governs all; or as 
the Being most excellent of all, than whom nothing can be, or be 
thought of as being, better or more perfect." 

The earliest theologians, who did not as yet treat of the attributes 
as a special topic, embrace them all, together with a notice of the 
Trinity, in the definition of God. Thus MEL. (Loci Theol. , I, 13) : 
1 God is a spiritual essence, intelligent, eternal, true, good, pure, 
just, merciful, most free, of vast power and wisdom, the eternal 
Father who begat the Son, His own image, from eternity, and the 
Son, the co-eternal image of the Father, and the Holy Spirit, pro- 



ceeding from the Father and the Son." Later theologians also 
regard it as necessary to incorporate at once the Trinity in the defi 
nition of God. Thus CAL. says (II, 282): "Those who do not 
include a statement of the three persons in the description of God 
do not present that doctrine in a form at all genuine or complete, 
since without these it does not yet appear what the true God is. 
Compare, per contra, 19, preliminary note. 

18. (3.) The Attributes of God. 

The doctrine of the attributes of God comprises only the 
more specific description of the divine nature, as the same is 
set forth in the Holy Scriptures. [1] The attributes are, 
therefore, not to be considered as something supplementary to 
the essence of God, which may be laid aside without detriment 
to the substance of God ; [2] but in them we describe the di- 
vine essence only according to its special features, because we 
cannot otherwise conceive of it (they are thus variously char 
acterized on account of the feebleness of our conception). 
Hence it also follows that the attributes are to be regarded as 
unchangeable and permanent. [3] 

We acquire our knowledge of the divine attributes, in gen 
eral, only from the Holy Scriptures, as has been already said, 
and yet these are here taught, either only by way of popular 
representation, or without any design of aiding us in construct 
ing a systematic doctrinal statement of the divine attributes. 
To accomplish this, we must have recourse to other expedients. 
A correct and exhaustive arrangement of the divine attributes 
we may, however, attain, if, starting out with the proposition 
that God is the Most Perfect Essence, we endeavor to enum 
erate all His perfections ; inasmuch as the attributes of God 
are nothing else than the description of this most perfect Es 
sence. These perfections we ascertain in a threefold way : 

1. By ascribing to God, in the highest sense, all the perfec- 
tions which we can discover in His creatures, inasmuch as no 
perfection can be wanting to God of which we find creatures 

2. By removing from our conception of God all imperfec-^ 
tions which we observe in creatures, as nothing in any wise 
imperfect can be ascribed to Him, and by attributing to Him 
all the opposite perfections. 


3. By ascribing to Him all the perfections which necessarily 
must have belonged to one who was able to create and accom- 
plish what God has done. It is, therefore, by the way of emi 
nence, [4] of negation, [5] and causality, [6] that \ve arrive at a 
comprehensive knowledge of the divine attributes. 

The attributes found in this way may be variously classified ; 
usually they are divided either into negative and positive 
(HoLL. (237), " the former being those by which the imperfec 
tions found in creatures are removed from God ; the latter, 
those by which perfections are simply affirmed concerning 
God ;" or, into such as describe God as He is in Himself 
and such as describe Him in His relation to the world). There 
fore, a. Attributes av*m ra , quiescent (which, viz., have no 
specific reference to certain acts), or immanent, which describe 
the divine essence absolutely and in itself, without reference 
to an operation, and so directed towards no act ; b. Attributes 
EvepyjiTina, or operative, and exerting themselves outwardly, hav 
ing reference to other things, which describe the divine es 
sence relatively, with reference to an operation, and so are 
recognized as ordained for certain acts. [7] AVe follow the 
former division, and arrange the attributes of God, therefore, 
in the following manner : 

BR. (174): I. The NEGATIVE are : unity, simplicity, immu 
tability. infinity, immensity, eternity. 

1. "Unity ; the attribute of God, by which we conceive the 
flivine essence to be absolutely single ; not only undivided, but 
also indivisible and incommunicable by any multiplication of 
Himself." HOLL. (238.) "Unity is ascribed to God, as well 
absolutely, i. e., that the divine essence is undivided ; as exclu 
sively, i. <?., when we recognize God as one, beside whom there 
is none other. Deut. 6: 4 ; 4: 35; 2 Kings 19: 19." BR. 
(175). [8] 

2. "Absolute Simplicity, by which God is truly and really 
uncompounded (not compounded of matter and form, of in 
tegral parts, of subject and accident, of nature and subsistence). 
Ex. 3: 14." (Ibid.) ["Spirituality, John 4: 24, is comprised 
in Simplicity." QUEN. I, 286.] 

3. "Immutability consists in this, that God is liable to no 
change, Cither as to existence (inasmuch as He is immortal 

and incorruptible. Rom. 1: 23 ; 1 Tim. 1: 17, 6: 16), or as to 
.accidents (James 1: 17), or as to place (Jer. 23: 24). or as to C^. ^ 
will or purpose (Numb. J^_J9 : Prov. 19: 21 ; Mai. 3: 6)." ^ * 
BR. (176). [9] 1 

^s, "Immutability is the perpetual identity of the divine es- } x^ 
y sence and all its perfections, with the absolute negation of all >j | 

motion, either physical or ethical." QUEN. (I, 288). 
sj 4. "Infinity, because the essence of God is contained within. 
^ no bounds (either of time, of place, or of anything else). Ps. 
. 145: 3."~BR. (177). 

5. " The Immensity of God consists in this, that the divine 
r essence cannot be measured by, or included within, any local 
^ limits. Jei\_23:JM ; 1 Kings 8: 27." BR. (178). 
^ "Immensity is the interminable ubiety, by virtue of which 
God cannot but be everywhere, in His own essence, or it is the 
^ absolute interminability of the divine essence. It flows from 
i^ infinity, which, with respect to time, is eternity, and, with re- 
NJ spect to space, is immensity." QUEN. (I, 288). From this 
1 there follow : a, the power of being illocally present, absolutely 
X everywhere ; 6, the (ubiety and) omnipresence, by virtue of 
\vwhich God is actually present to all His creatures." [10] 

* r /" mi T"l/ *j P /"^ T 1 lj.1 11 1 /.* " J. 1 


6. The Eternity of God, absolutely so called (for it does not 
1 yi signify merely a very long time), indicates that the existence 
\| ] **or duration of God is permanent, without any beginning or 
v (\jend, without succession or change. Ps. 102: 27 ; 90: 2 ; Gen. 
j \y j[21 : 33 ; Isaiah 40: 28 ; 1 Tim. 1:17 ; Rev. 1: 4 and 8, 11:17; 
^ J16: 5." BR. (185). 

II. THE POSITIVE ATTRIBUTES. BR. (174): " Life, knowl- 
^edge, wisdom, holiness, justice, truth, power, goodness, per 
fection." ^ 
1. Life. QUEN. (I," 289): " The attribute, by which the di- .g 
ae essence always shows itself active." [11] ^ 
J 2. Knowledge. QUEN. (I, 289): " By which He. through one , 
^simple and eternal act of the intellect, knows all things what- 
feyer that have been, are, and shall be, or even in any way can 
be. Nor only absolutely, but also that which is conditionally 
future or possible. l^gam^2:_3 ; 1 John 3: 20 ; 1 Kings 8: 39 ; 
Ps. 7: 9 ; 34: 15 ; 139: 1 ; Pr. 15: 3." [12] 

3. " The Wisdom of God signifies that most, accurate judg- 



ment of God, by which He knows how to dispose and ordain 
all causes and effects in a most admirable manner for the at 
tainment of His end. Job 12: 13; 28: 20; Rom. 11: 33." 
BR~ (191). [13]. 

" The Omnisapience of God is that, by which He most thor 
oughly penetrates all those things which infinitely surpass the 
reach of human and angelic judgment." QUEN. (I, 290). 

4. "Holiness, by which He, conformably to His own Law, de 
sires all things that are right and good. Deut. 32: 4 ; Ps. 
92: 15; Lev. 11: 44 ; 1 Pet. 1: 15." BR. (200)7[14]"" 

" The holiness of God is the supreme purity in God, abso- ^ 
lutely free from all stain or vice, and requiring due cleanli- \ 
ness and purity in creatures." QUEN. (I, 292). \$ 

5. Justice. " The supreme and immutable rectitude of the 
divine will, demanding from rational creatures that which is 
right and just." QUEN. (I, 292). 

" Justice is a divine attribute htw/Tixbv, by virtue of which 
God wishes and does all those things w r hich are conformed to 
His eternal Law (Ps^j92: 15), prescribes suitable laws to crea 
tures (Ps. 19: T), fulfils promises made to men (Is. 45: _23), re 
wards the good (Rom. 2: 5-7 ; 2 Thess. 1: 6, 7), and punishes 
the wicked (Ps. 119: 137 ; Rom. 1: 32 ; Acts 17: 31 ; 2 Thess. 
1: 6; Rom. 3: 8, 25)." HOLL. (268). ix 

6. " Veracity, by which God is unfailing in speaking the ,3 
truth and keeping His promises. Numb. 23: 19 ; Heb. 6: 18 ; V s 
Deut. 32: 4." BK. (202)." %J 

7. Power. " The divine attribute by which God can accom- 3 

plish everything that can possibly be done without implying 
an imperfection in God." 1 loi.i.. ( 27 2). 

" Power is that by w r hich God independently, through the 
eternal activity of His own essence, can do absolutely every 
thing that does not involve a contradiction. Matt. 19: 26; 
Luke 1: 37 ; 18: 27 ; Eph. 3: 20." QUEN. (I, 293). [15] 

8 and 9. "Goodness belongs to God, not only absolutely and 
in itself, which is His very perfection, or the essence of God, 
since He contains within Himself all perfections (Matt. 5: 48 ; 
Luke 18: 19), either formally or by W 7 ay of eminence ;.but also, 
T< xpcd trdij or in relation to creatures, to whom God is good, 
since He efficiently produces every created good (Acts 17: 

<m^L n^o^. 6-~-^t0 


25, 28; James 1: 17 ; 1 Cor. 4: 7), and this according to His 
own perfection, as the ideal or pattern of created perfection ; 
and it attracts also, and excites to the love and desire of Him 
self as the chief good." BR. (205). [16] 

[1] QUEN. (I, 284): " Attributes are nothing else than inade 
quate conceptions of the divine essence, involving in part the 
essence itself of the object, and inwardly designating the same. 
Inasmuch as our finite intellect cannot adequately conceive of the 
infinite and most simple essence of God by a single adequate con 
ception, therefore it apprehends the same by distinct and inade 
quate conceptions, inadequately representing the divine essence 
which inadequate conceptions are called the affections and attributes of 
God; affections, because they designate the divine essence; attri 
butes, because they are attributed to the same by our intellect. 

HOLL. (234): " The attributes Of God are called perfections, ^be 
cause they most perfectly declare God s essence." 

[2] CII.MN. (hoc. Th. I. -! >): " An accident <lors n<>t belong to 
God. . . . By an accident, that is meant which can either be lost, 
or can be added to a substance before existing, or can depart while 
the substance itself remains." 

CAL. (II, 221): The attributes are by no means accidental, 
but, on the part of the object, they are the essence of God itself, 
regarded under various modes or respects of consideration, since 
essentials are usually referred to by that name. For if they were 
accidents, they would add a new entity or perfection, and the 
essence of God would not of itself be complete. If they were to be 
long to God in the manner of accidents, God s essence would not 
be altogether immutable, because liable to accidents. 

QUEN. (I, 296): "Before any operation of our intellect, divine 
attributes are truly and properly in God; yet they are not accidents, 
nor are they predicated of God in the manner of inherence or com 
position." And this is further explained by the following: (I, 
297): The divine attributes do not denote anything superadded 
tojthe divine essence, but are only inadequate conceptions of an in- 
finitely perfect essence. The divine essence is like a boundless 
ocean of all infinite perfections, which the human intellect has not 
the ability to exhaust, by one single conception, and, therefore, by 
means of various conceptions, draws drop by drop, as it were, 
something from that infinity." (Ibid.) The divine attributes 
imply the divine essence itself, which we apprehend now with this 
and then with another perfection, as if we would distribute the 
essence itself into a number of conceptions, representing the same 


essence inadequately, inasmuch as our finite intellect cannot at the 
same time distinctly recognize its infinite perfections. 

Hence follows the proposition (Gnu. Ill, 84): ( The divine attri 
butes, considered in and of themselves, are really and absolutely one 
with the divine essence." CAL. (II, 222): "If they really differed 
from the essence after the manner of accidents, a composition in 
God would be predicated; and since, by nature, accidents come 
after essence, former and latter in the order of nature would have 
a place in God, both of which are contrary to the faith. If they 
were to be actually distinguished, they would not be predicated in 
the abstract of God, who in the abstract is said to be truth, life, 
love. If God s power were to differ from His essence, God would 
not be av-et-ovoioGj i. e., powerful in Himself, but on account of the 
power superadded to His essence." 

There is, indeed, a certain difference between essence and attri 
butes, otherwise they would not be separately treated. This dis 
tinction is thus stated by QUEN. (I, 300) : The essential attributes 
of God are distinguished neither from the divine essence nor from 
each other really, or from the nature of the object, as matters alto 
gether diverse, or as two or more different objects or diverse modes 
of one and the same simple object, but they are so distinguished 
null/ to l/ic ri*tni." 

A distinction from the nature of the object, would occur if the 
objects were different, as body and soul; but a distinction from 
reason occurs, when anything is only conceived of as distinct, 
although it is not distinct in fact. HOLL. (235) expresses this 
distinction thus: "Divine attributes are distinguished from the 
divine essence and from each other not nominally, nor really, but 
formally, according to our mode of conceiving, not without a cer 
tain foundation of distinction." To wit: not "nominally " because 
"divine attributes imply distinct conceptions, therefore they differ 
more than nominally" nor "really," because "the divine essence 
is most simple, destitute of all real composition but formally, 
etc., "because we form single conceptions of the operations of the 
single attributes, although they do not exist separately in the 
divine nature." 

[3] GRH. (Ill, 84): "The attributes exist inseparably in God; 
for, as it is impossible that the essence of an object be separated 
from the object itself, so also the attributes cannot be separated 
from God, since they are the very essence of God. 

[4] HOLL. (190): By way of eminence, according to which 
whatever we discover in creatures to be especially perfect, we 
ascribe in the most eminent manner to God, by virtue of the^very 


familiar principle in nature: Whatever exists in an effect, pre- 
exists in the cause. From which we infer that all perfections 
which are in creatures, are in the Creator, either formally or by 
way of eminence. For indeed, in creatures, such perfections shine 
forth absolutely, as involve in their formal conception no imper 
fection, but are better than the creatures themselves. Thus \ve 
notice in men, the most eminent of visible creatures, the power to 
understand and to will, wisdom, goodness, justice, etc. These 
perfections exist formally, and, indeed, in the most excellent man 
ner, in God." 

While here perfections are ascribed to God which in a certain 
sense can be predicated also of a creature, GRH. (Ill, 86) appends 
the twofold remark: (1) That we must be careful to observe that 
they belong to man only secondarily, but to God originally. . . . 
Of God they are predicated essentially, efo^Kwf, and, therefore, 
altogether in a peculiar way; of certain creatures only accidentally 
and through a participation and resemblance: of God they are 
predicated in the abstract; of creatures, only in the concrete. The 
goodness of God not only belongs to God essentially, and is itself 
the essence of God, but also is the cause and rule of goodness in 
man." (2) That those attributes which in the case of man ex 
press an affection, when ascribed also to God do not indicate a 
weakness or mutability like that of the creature, in accordance 
with the principle (ibid) : Whatever things are transferred from 
creatures to God must first be freed from all imperfections, and 
then only, as that which is perfect, are they to be ascribed to God. 
(I, 110): "Nor do those affections which Scripture ascribes to 
God prove any mutability of the divine essence; for those things 
which are spoken of avfipuKOKatiur, must be understood HeoTrpenu-. 

CHMN. (Loc. Th., 29): "It is objected that some things are 
affirmed of God with respect to time: as, the Word was made 
flesh, and became for us a Creator, an aid in times of trouble, and 
a refuge. Therefore, all this is predicated of God accidentally. 
Cyril replies : With respect to creatures, some things are affirmed 
of God under the limitations of time; and these are affirmed acci 
dentally, not because anything happens, with change, to God s 
substance, but as an accident of the creature in which the change 

[o] HOLL. (191): l By way of negation, according to which we 
remove from God whatever implies imperfection in creatures, and 
ascribe to Him an opposite perfection, according to the self-evident 
principle of nature, that there is no defect in that which is supremely 
perfect. Relying upon this principle of nature, we call God in- 


dependent, infinite, incorporeal, immense, immortal, incompre 

[6] HOLL. (190): By way of causality, according to which we 
recognize from the effects an efficient First Cause; from creatures, a 
Creator; and from the most beautiful and wise government of this 
universe, a most excellent, most powerful, and most wise Preserver 
and Governor. Here an argument is derived from the very evi 
dent axiom: An effect is proved from the cause, and its perfection." 
N. B. Except in the writings of GRH. , we find the method adopted 
after the time of Dionysius only incidentally noticed, it is true; 
and HOLL. mentions it barely as that by which we can acquire a 
natural knowledge of God: but we may with good reason assign it 
this place; for, although it is not questioned that we obtain a 
clearer and more comprehensive knowledge of the divine attributes 
from revelation than natural knowledge teaches, yet we cannot be 
lieve ourselves limited, with regard to the divine attributes, to the 
Holy Scriptures in such a way as only to have the single attributes 
enumerated for us out of the Scriptures, but we must rather be 
able from them to form for ourselves such a conception of the Di 
vine Essence that we may from it deduce the attributes; and 
thus, from the standpoint of revelation itself, this threefold way of 
eminence can be evolved. 

[7] GRH. (Ill, 85) enumerates still other distributions: "(1) 
Some attributes are predicated at the same time of God and of crea- 
A ur ^ sucn as those by which things are signified which in creatures 
are accidents, but in God are substances, as when God is said to be 
good, wise; but others are predicated of God alone, as those by which 
things which belong to God alone are explained, as when He is 
said to be eternal, infinite. (2) Some attributes are attributes to 
God properly, as that He is good, wise, etc. ; others improperly and 
figuratively, when, by anthropopathy, human members and affec 
tions are ascribed to Him. (3) Some are affirmed of God in the 
abstract, as when He is said to be life, goodness, truth ; others in the 
concrete^ as when He is said to be living, good, and true. (4) Some 
are internal, as infinity, eternity, spirituality; others are external, and 
these are Cither inimitable, jis omnipotence, etc., or imitable. (5) 
Some belong to God from eternity, as that He is infinite ;_others 
belong to Him in time, as that He is the Creator and Preserver, yet 
these, as relative terms, do not prove any change made in God Him 
self in time, but denote that a new work has been produced by 
Him, and that a change has been made in creatures. 

Those Dogmaticians who divide the attributes into immanent and 
externally operative, usually cite a greater number. CALOV. (II, 


223, seq. ) thus enumerates them: "I. The immanent attributes 
pertain either to essence, or infinity, or spirituality. To the essence 
belong God s perfection (and thence, majesty and happiness), unity 
(and thence, simplicity), truth (and thence, immutability), good 
ness, holiness. To infinity belong immensity, eternity. To spir 
ituality, immortality, life (intellect, will). II. To the attributes 
exerting themselves outwardly belong omnipotence, omniscience, grace, 
justice, truth, omnipresence." 

[8] HOLL. (238): God is said to be one, not in kind, but in 
number, since He is a~b~eing entirely alone, not only in Himself 
undivided, but also indivisible, because of the entire simplicity of 
the divine essence, as there is no composition in God. 

GRH. is the only one of the Dogmaticians who considers unity as 
not an attribute, but as a characteristic, of the divine essence. For 
the relation of the unity of God to the Trinity, see 19. 

[9] GRH. (I, 124): " But did the work of creation change God, 
or make Him changeable ? By no means ; for in time He did that 
which, from eternity, He had decreed in His immutable will." 

[10] GRH. (Ill, 122): " The immensity and essential omnipres 
ence of God is thus to be understood (1), that God is present to 
all things, not only by virtue and efficacy, nor only by sight and 
knowledge, but also in His entire and individual essence, for He is 
immense and infinite, not only in power and knowledge, but also in essence; 
(2), that God is everywhere present, not awcKTus, so as to be com 
prehended, but cweiiTiKw, so as to comprehend and contain all things; 
not TrepiiKTw and -xepiypa-rw, but ir?f)iKTiKuf. The Scholastics say that 
God is everywhere, not locally or by way of circumscription, . . . 
nor definitively, . . . but repletively;* yet this must not be un 
derstood in a gross and corporeal manner, that God fills all places 
just as a body which fills its own place in such a manner as to hin 
der another body from beihg located in the place which it occupies, 
but in a divine manner, that God, being confined to no place be 
cause of the immensity of His essence, contains all places; (3), that 
God is everywhere present, not by the multiplication of His essence, 
for He is **% btov , a most simple being, and, therefore, whatever 
He is He is entire, neither by the division of His essence, . . . nor 
by extension and rarefaction, . . . nor by commingling; . . . (4), 
that God is, by His essence, everywhere present, not subjectively, 
as an accident inheres in a subject, because God is neither compo- 
site, nor can He admit of composition, . . . but that He is effect 
ively present as the source and cause of the thing which He effects; 
for God is not contained in a place, but rather gives to place and 

* See Appendix II, under Circumscriptio. 


the things that are in place their own existence. _The presence is 
(a),_illocalj (6), indivisible; (c), incomprehensible to our reason; 
(d), effective and operative; (e), containing within itself all things, 
like a most minute point. 

HOLL. (275): " God s omnipresence is a divine ivepyimKov attri 
bute, by virtue of which God is present to all creatures, not only 
by the nearness of His substance, but also by His efficacious work 
ing. The divine presence, according to the Scriptural idiom and 
its complex meaning, implies two things (1), afaaaraaia, or the sub 
stantial presence of God with creatures; (2), i-vweia, or effectual 
1 operation. Therefore, two things are here to be proved: (a), that 
God, with respect to His substance, is everywhere present; (ft), to 
a full and accurate definition of the divine presence, the effectual 
operation also of God as a definitive part is required by the light of 
the Holy Scripture." 

[11] QUEN. (I, 289): "God is life (1), essentially, for He is 
ain>;wor, having life kv kavru (John 5: 26), ? . e. , in Himself and of 
Himself, by His own nature and essence; (2), gt epyymcj;-, effectively, 
because He is to all the cause and origin of life, or He is the life of 
all that live, not formally, but causally. (Acts 17: 28; Deut. 32: 
39.)" This is negatively expressed by immortality. 1 Tim. G: 
16, and incorruptibility, Rom. 1: 23; 1 Tirn. 1:17. 

[12] QUEN. (I, 289): "Although the knowledge of God is one 
and simple, and cannot be separated into parts or species, yet, with 
respect to objects, a manifold distinction is generally observed. 
This distinction is (1) into natural, or that of simple intelligence, 
and free, or that of sight. The former, which is called also abstract 
and indefinite, is that by which God knows Himself, and not only 
those things which are, which have been, or are about to be, but 
also all possible things, viz. , those which can happen and exist, 
although they never will happen or exist; yea, He is acquainted 
even with those things which are impossible. The latter, viz. , the 
knowledge of free vision, which is called both intuitive and definite, 
is that by which God regards all things as present, sees Himself in 
Himself, and all other things which at any time have existed, or 
^ now exist, or will truly exist, both in Himself, as in the universal 
- cause, and in their proximate causes and in themselves. The 
jt^ Scholastics add a third, and name it mediate, according to which 
they say that God is acquainted with those things which can exist, 
with the condition interposed that it is limited to that which the 
creatures, if created with certain conditions, would be free to do, 
or would be allowed to effect. Natural knowledge precedes every 
free act of the will. Free knowledge is said to follow a free act of 


the will. Mediate knowledge is said indeed to precede an act of 
the will, yet in such a manner that it sees something as future only 
on the hypothesis of such will. 

[13] BR. (191 and 192) discusses the topic of the will of God, not 
as a separate attribute, as many Dogmaticians do, but as supple 
mentary to the attribute of wisdom ; and from the will of God de 
duces the attributes of holiness, justice and truth. 

HOLL. (261): "The will of God is the divine essence itself, con 
ceived of under the mode of power, seeking the good and shunning 
the evil that is known by the intellect. 

The nature of the divine will is more particularly described as 
follows : 

BR. (193): The will of God is distinguished into natural and 
free. According to ^he former, God is said to will that which He is 
not able not to will. According to the latter, He is said to will that 
which He was able also not to will, or to will the opposite. Accord 
ing to the former manner, He is said to will Himself; according to 
the latter manner, created things." 

HOLL. (262) : "You say: The necessity to will and love Himself 
seems to be an imperfection in God, both because it is like the mode 
of operation of natural agents, which is imperfect, and also because 
freedom is a greater perfection than necessity. Reply : Necessity in 
acting is threefold. One kind is violent, which is from without. A 
second is natural, which is, indeed, from within, yet is inanimate or 
at least irrational. Both are imperfect. A third is natural, vital, 
and in the highest degree voluntary. This is a great perfection, and 
such a necessity to will and love exists in God in respect to that 
which is a supreme and infinite good. Yea, this necessity is more 
perfect than the freedom to which it is opposed." 

BR. (194): "The free will of God is distinguished as: (1) effi 
cacious and inefficacious. That is efficacious by which God wills 
something to be effected. Inefficacious is that by which something 
in itself pleases God, although He does not intend to effect it. The 
efficacious will again is divided into absolute, by which God wills 
something without a condition; and conditional, by which He wills 
something under a condition; (2) absolute, by which He wills 
that something be effected by His own absolute power, or by His 
power as not bound by second causes; and ordinate, by which He 
wills that something be effected by His own ordinate power, or by 
His power as bound to second causes and to a certain order of means 
appointed by Himself; C3) first or antecedent, by which He wills 
something from Himself alone, or entirely from His own inclina 
tion, without any regard being had to the circumstances; and second 

.or consequent, b^ which He wills Something with a consideration of 
the circumstances, or in consideration of a cause or condition, re 
garded with respect to the creature for which He wills something." 
BR. (198): "A distinction of the divine will also occurs, into a 
will of the sign and of the purpose. The former is meant when the 
name, will, is ascribed to an effect or object of the divine will, namely 
as a sign of a will in God.* The latter denotes the act itedf of. the 
divine will, by which it wills anything. Whence it is manifest that 
the distinction is analogical. But we must take care not to imagine 
such a will of the sign as to conflict with the will of the purpose which 
the sign, according to the plan, ought to signify." 

[14] HOLL. (246): God is holy, (1) independently and by His 
essence: creatures dependency and through a quality superadded 
to the essence; (2) immutably, inasmuch as the holiness of God 
cannot fail, or undergo a change like that of a creature, James 1 : 
17; (3) efficiently, because He is the author of all holiness, 1 Thess. 
5: 23; (4) by way of example, since the holiness of God is the model 
of all holiness, which the holy sons of God perpetually contemplate 
and imitate. This imitation the Heavenly Father demands of 
them, Lev. 11: 44; cf. Lev. 19: 2; 1 Pet. 1: 16; (5) objectively, be 
cause the holiness of God must be sacredly recognized and cele 
brated by us, Is. 6: 3." 

[15] QUEN. (I, 293): "The objects of the divine omnipotence 
are not only such things as God wills to do, but also such as are in 
any way possible, and, therefore, all those things which do not in 
volve contradiction, as (1) such as have no mode of existence. 
Thus God is unable to render a deed undone; (2) such as imply a 
fault or defect, as to be able to lie, to sin, to die. For to do such 
things is not a proof of power, but of impotence. The potentia of 
God is not separated from divine potestas, rfwa/^r, from ifdwrfa,t as 
the Calvinists wish; for, although these can be distinctly conceived 
of, and among other things outside of God have frequently been 
separated, yet in God they are most intimately joined, and are one 
and the same thing." 

Although divine power is unique, yet because of its different 
relations, it can be distinguished into absolute, by which God can 
most absolutely effect whatever can exist; and ordinate, which the 
accustomed government of the universe displays. By the former, 
God can frame a new world, from the stones raise up children to 

[*As illustrations, he cites Matt. 6: 15; 12: 50, and especially 1 Thess. 4:3.] 
t [" Potentia denotes a merely factitious power, which can be exerted at will, 

like dvvafii^ ; potestas, a just and lawful power, with which a person is intrusted, 

like ef-owia." Doederlein s Latin Synonyms. ] 




Abraham (Matt. 3:9); the latter preserves the order established in 
nature. By this absolute power God can do many things, which, 
nevertheless, He does not do by His ordinary power." 

[16] HOLL. (245): The goodness of God is the conformity of the 
divine essence to the divine will. It has been distinguished into 
essential goodness, or perfection, and moral goodness, or holiness. 



19. The Doctrine is a Mystery. 

nPHE Holy Scriptures declare that God is but one, and yet 
they also ascribe Divinity to three, viz.. Father, Son, and 
Spirit ; and thus we learn from them that there is one God, but 
that this one God is Father, Son, and Spirit. Here a proposition 
is stated which is altogether beyond the grasp of reason ; the ^ 
doctrine it contains belongs therefore to those we designate as 
mysteries. [2] Concerning this mystery the Holy Scriptures 
alone can give us any information, therefore upon them alone 
this doctrine is based. [3] But the Holy Scriptures do not un 
veil for us this mystery ; they rather reveal the doctrine as a $ 
mystery, and it is therefore to so great an extent a mystery, 
that we here upon earth can never attain to a perfectly cor 
rect^ conception or comprehension of it, [4] and at best can y. 
only approximate this by analogies drawn from the sphere of 
human knowledge. [5] Therefore the Church desists from 
any attempt to fathom this mystery, but applies in this case 
most rigidjyjier_rule of extracting the substance of her faith 
alone from the Holy Scriptures. She simply assigns to herself 
the task of most carefully collecting and arranging the subject- 
matter of what the Scriptures teach in regard to this mystery, 
and is the more urgently impelled to do this, because the mat 
ter in hand is one of no less importance than to learn what 
conceptions God wishes us to form concerning Himself. [6] 
Therefore she demands of every one, who wishes to belong_tci / 
the Church, that he believingly accept this revelation contained ^> 


to in the Holy Scriptures. [7] The Church, when she sets forth 
/- this doctrine, is moreovei^jully justified in the use of such 
terms as do not occur in the Holy Scriptures ; for, inasmuch 
as the opponents of this doctrine, when it was stated only in 
the terms employed in the Holy Scriptures, perverted the 
meaning of these and gave them a different interpretation, the 
Church was compelled more specifically to explain in what 
sense these scriptural expressions, taken in their connection, 
are to be understood; and this, of course, had to be done in 
terms which were not contained in the Scriptures, for their 
very purpose was to explain the sense in which the Church 
^ understands the statement of the Scriptures. [8] And this 
explains why it is that the_doctrine_p_f the Trinity only grad- 
ually assumed thejorm in which the Church now sets it forth, 
and how ungrounded is the inference that the doctrine is not 
fully indorsed by the Holy Scriptures, and that it was not 
from the first believed by the Church. [9] And, finally, the 
Church, in using these terms, neither presumes that she has 
/ unfolded the mystery, nor does she intend that these expres 
sions are to be taken precisely in the sensejn which they_are_ 
generally used ; for, inasmuch as we have here to do with a 
doctrine that is entirely beyond the reach of reason, the terms 
that are applicable to other things are inadequate, and the 
Church therefore still always thus explains the particular 
sense in which she wishes these expressions to be under- 
/ stood. [10] 

The Church arrives at the doctrine of Jhe_TrjnitvJ)y ob 
serving that in the Holy Scriptures, on the one hand.the"uTilty 
of God is taught ; and on the other, Divinity is ascribedjp 
tj]iree J _Father, Son, and Spirit ; that, accordingly, a certain 
distinction isj^cggnizedjn God t and a plurality in TTJrn i~s jn- 
clicated. [11] These predicates concerning God, contained in 
the Holy Scriptures, of unity, plurality and _diversity, the 
Church combines in the formula^ 

The one divine essence subsists in three persons; or (what is the 
same thing), 

In the Deity there are three persons and one essence; or, 
God is one in essence, but the same God, one in essence, is three 
fold in person. 


The doctrine of the Trinity, therefore, is that in which a 
peculiar and incomprehensible application of the term three 
to the divine persons is taught, but in such a manner that not 
anything composed of three, but three persons of one essence 
are postulated. God is triune, therefore, because, in essence 
one, He has three mc-des of subsistence^ [El/] 

The meaning of this formula is further explained by the 
Church as follows : 

(1) The unity therein expressed is that of the divine essence, [13] 
This unity of essence is, more specifically, ajrwrncrical unitu. 
i. e., it is of such a nature that it can be predicated only of one. 
Hence, it follows that when it is said that the Father, Son, and 
Spirit are one, these three are nof to be designated as three 
Gods, each having a special divine essence (Symb. Athanas.: 
Non tres DiL sed unus Deus}; and that we are not to associate 
with the word being [Wesen, essentia] exactly the same signifi 
cation that it has when applied to man (essentia hominis), for 
that is just the difference between the essential nature of God 
and that of man, i. e., that God s nature is one numerically, 
and that of man is one in kind. [14] Father, Son, and Spirit 
are, therefore, God in such a sense^ that entire divinity is pre 
dicated of each of the three ; the one and undivided essentia is 
ascribed to the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, The one and 
undivided divine essence is entirejjn_ejiL [l] (tota in singulis), 
whence it further follows that, as in God there is no objective 
distinction between nature and attributes, divinity as well as 
all its attributes must be ascribed to each of these three. [10] 

(2) A plurality in God, and, therefore, a certain distinction 
between Father. Son, and Spirit, is indeed clearly taught in the 
Holy_Scriptures, but this is (a] no plurality of essence (plural 
itas essentialis), as has already been shown ; further, it is (fc) no 

plurality of accidents (pluralitas accidentalis), i. e., personality is 
not something added to the being of God, as a special peculiar 
ity or characteristic, for the principle applies to God In Deum 
nulla accidentia cadunt. [17] ( 18, note 2.) Plurality may^ 
perhaps_hfi_ best described as a pluralitas hypostatica seu per- 
sonarum, [18] i.~e., as one, according to which each of the 
three persons is to be conceived of as a self-subsistent subject ; 
which statement, however, must be at once qualified by the 


remark that we are to stop with this, and dare not press the 
analogy of the word any further. For there is always jhis 
difference in the word person when used with reference to Goj 
orman^respectively, that in the latter case it signifies a self- 
siihaistpiTit _sabject 1 _whicli _has its own essence^ while in the 
Trinity there is only one unjwided_egsence 1 _ of which all the 
three jDersons of the Godhead J>artake. [19] In this sense, 
therefore, we are to distinguish in the one divine essence three 
persons, and jjie Ldistinctipnjbetween Jthein_jg_tp_ be described as 
a true and real one. [20] Hence it follows, however, that to 
each of these there belong certainjpeculiarities distinguishing 
it from the others_(a lujpostatical character or personal pecu 
liarity (nota, notio, relatio), showing a distinction of persons in 
a common identity of essence). Such peculiarities we recog 
nize in the various statements made in the Holy Scriptures 
concerning the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. These state 
ments are of a twofold character ; they either indicate the in 
ner differences that exist in the persons themselves, and de 
scribe, in this case, the special mode of subsistence of the 
single persons (rpoTrof tVd^fwf, the peculiar method of subsisting, 
through which and by reason of which each person is distin 
guished from the other), or they describe the special relation 
which the single persons hold to the world. Hence we have 
to distinguish the internal and external peculiarities (propri- 
etates, notiones), to which there are also corresponding acts by 
which the individual persons are related to themselves or to 
the world (opera ad intra, internal ads, which God performs 
without any creature, within himself opera ad extra ^external 
ads, when God effects something in creatures, without his own 
essence). [21] Through these declarations of the Holy Scrip 
tures we learn the peculiarities that constitute the distinction 
between the several persons. Yet we must not fail to observe 
that it is the internal characteristics and the internal acts cor 
responding to them, as described in the divine Word, that re- 
veal to us more clearly the distinction of persons ; for only the 
internal w r orks (opera ad intra) are to be regarded as~such L act8_a8_ 
Proceed from one particulur person, to the exclusion of the ot Tiers, 
while the outward works (opera ad extra) are those from which, 
predicated directly of one person, the others are still 

?~ /I -A-is* 1**-& 1 o O 


ngt_absolutely excluded^ The reason of this, however, lies in 
the fact, that the opera ad extra are outward operations, which 
must always be considered as proceeding from the essence of 
God ; hence, also, in every such operation all the three per 
sons must participate, at least in some way, as the essence of 
God, which is common to all three, is only one. Whence fol 
low the propositions : "The opera ad intra are divided, [22] 
the opera- ad extra are undivided." [23] CHEMN. (Loc. Th., 

I, 40). 

The personal peculiarities, moreover, according to the Holy 
Scriptures, are five : a^^ma (the not having been begotten) 
and paternity in the Father active procession (spiratio) in the 
Father and the Son sonship, in the Son passive procession 
in the Holy Spirit. [24] 

The personal acts, or inward operations, are two : (of the 
Father) generation (of the Father and Son), spiration. 

The opera ad extra are three : of the Father, creation ; of the 
Son, redemption ; of the Holy Spirit, sanctification. 

From the peculiarities and acts mentioned in Scripture, ac 
cording to which the begetting of the Son is ascribed to the 
Father, and the sending of the Holy Spirit to the Father and 
the Son, it follows, finally, that we are to assign the first place 
to the Father, the second to the Son, and the third to the Holy 
Ghost. [25] 

The Church indicates both, viz., the unity and the distinc 
tion, by the term uprnv^a, which it predicates of the three per 
sons. [26] From this unity there is just as legitimately de 
rived the -tptxup /ois (immanentia, immeatio, circumincessio, 
inexistentia mutua et singularissima) [the mutual and most 
peculiar inherence] , by which one person in virtue of the unity 
of essence is within another (Jqhn 14: 11 ; 17: 21), through 
which term the error is precluded, of regarding the three per 
sons as subsisting separately alongside of one another ; as also 
the equality (so that no one person is greater or less than an 
other, and that the Father cannot properly be called God, by 
way of eminence (ar tfo x t/v), or be said to be greater than the 
Son by reason of the mode of subsistence). [27] 

The predicates which are to be ascribed to the three persons. 
may accordingly be thus classified : 


HOLL. (301): " I. God the Father [28] is the First Person of 
the Godhead, neither begotten nor proceeding, but from eter 
nity begetting the Son, the substantial image of Himself, and 
with the Son from eternity breathing forth the Holy Spirit, 
creating, preserving and governing all things, [29] sending 
His Son as the Redeemer, and the Holy Spirit as the Sancti- 
fier of the human race." 

" II. The Son of God [30] is the Second Person of. the God 
head, begotten of the Father from eternity, [31] of the same 
essence and majesty with the Father, who with the Father 
from eternity breathes forth the Holy Spirit, and in the fulness 
of time assumed human nature in His own person, that He 
might redeem and save the human race." Id. (305). 

"III. The Holy Spirit is the Third Person of the Godhead, 
of the same essence with the Father and the Son, who from 
eternity proceeds from the Father and the Son, [32] and in 
time is sent forth [33] by both, to sanctify the hearts of those 
who are to be saved." [34] Id. (329). 

[1] The doctrine concerning the Trinity can properly be treated 
of as distinct from that concerning God in general, for we should 
first discuss the essence and attributes of God in themselves, and 
then the particular manner in which this essence subsists and thus 
becomes common to three. 

QUEN. (I, 284): "The consideration of God is twofold, one 
absolute, another relative. The farmer is occupied with God con- 
sidered essentially, without respect to the three persons of the God 
head; the latter, with God considered personally. The former 
explains both the essence and the essential attributes of God; the 
latter describes the persons of the Holy Trinity,. and the personal 
attributes of each one." 

CAL. (Ill, 1): " The doctrine of the divine persons follows the 
doctrine of the divine attributes. This doctrine explains the 
mystery of the Holy Trinity, in order that we may know who is 
the one, true, and eternal God, whether, as He is one in essence, 
He is so also in person, or not; and who these divine persons are, 
who are to be regarded as the one, true God; namely, that accord 
ing to the Catholic faith, they are Father, Son, and Holy Ghost." 

[2] CHMN. (Loc. Th., 1/33): "The things that are declared 
concerning the Trinity of persons in the most holy Godhead are 
wonderful and far above all comprehension of creatures." 

s *~~jL. **y osi^ , ---t . 

GRH. (Ill, 220): { The mystery of the Trinity can in no way 
be clearly proved a priori from natural reason, nor ought such an 
(111,221): " To learn a doctrine that 

has been placed far above all comprehension of human reason, 
human reason cannot be led, from its own principles; for other 
wise it would not be above reason. But such is the doctrine of the 
Trinity, as is inferred from Matt. 11: 27; 16: 17; John 1: 18, etc." 
(Ibid.): "The question concerning the one and triune God 
is, What is God, in Himself? To this man cannot rise by the 
strength of His own reason." 

KG. (30): Its sublimity is such that it is far/? vow, tm-fp /u5>ov, at 
imp -agy KQTd^/y>tv (above thought, above speech, and above all 
comprehension), and therefore, from reason, it neither can nor 
ought to be attacked, or refuted, or demonstrated, whether a priori 
or a pontcriari." QUEN. (I, 318): "Yea, not even the possibility 
of this mystery can be obtained from the light of nature, since to 
reason, consulting its own principles, it seems absurd and im- 
possil >le. 

GRH. (Ill, 229): "Such is the nature and character of the 
mystery of the Trinity, and of other mysteries properly so called, 
that they transcend the comprehensionjj j-eason, i. e. , that reason, 
without the revelation of the Word, cannot attain to the knowledge 
of them, and that even when the revelation of the Word has been 
given, reason cannot and ought not to affirm, from its own prin 
ciples, anything whatever concerning them. Therefore also, in 
these mysteries, it ought not to oppose its own reasonings to the 
heavenly truth." 

The question, Hou\ then, mmt the testimonies be judged which have 
been produced jrom heathen writers, /or constructing the mystery of (lie 
Trinity ? is thus answered (Gun., Ill, 227): "(1) In some there 
are only similar things, but not the same with Christian doctrine. 
They agree with us in words; they differ from us in the explana 
tion and meaning of the words. ( 2 } Others teach the same things, 
but have derived them (a) partly from the reading of the Holy 
Scriptures; (/) partly from conversation \\ith Hebrews; (<.-) i>;irtlv 
from the revelations of oracles and the Sibyls. 

[3] GBH. (Ill, 217): "From the proper and only source of 
theology, viz., from the Word of God, the confirmation of this 
mystery must be derived." 

KG.: "The source (prinripium ), therefore, through which this 
mystery becomes known, and ought to be framed, is divine revela 
tion alone, communicated to us in the Scriptures both of the Old 
and of the New Testament." 



[4] This is implied already in the statement contained in 
Note 2, viz. , that this doctrine cannot be proved from reason by an 
a posteriori argument. GRH. (Ill, 233): "The mysteries of faith 
are above reason, not only in such a sense and respect that reason, 
without the revelation of the Word, cannot aspire to their knowl 
edge, but also that even with the revelation of the Word, reason 
still cannot, in any manner, comprehend the same; because in 
1 Cor. 2: 14, not only the knowing, but also the receiving, of spirit 
ual things is denied the natural man, and if reason were to judge 
concerning these things, it could judge only that they are folly." 

[5] HFRFFR. (44): "Is it possible, nevertheless, for this plu 
rality of unity to be, in any wise, adumbrated by certain analogies 
or most rude outlines? In the entire universe, nothing can be 
found to express the mystery of the adorable Godhead. For God, 
the Creator, surpasses creatures by immense intervals of degrees; 
yet, in order that we may be able even to stammer something con 
cerning so great a mystery as this, and to raise up and excite our 
thoughts to the adorable sublimity of the same, pious antiquity 
has attempted to illustrate so great a matter by analogies derived 
from creatures." (47): "Yet, in all these analogies, the points 
of unlikeness are greater than those of likeness; for there is noth 
ing in heaven or in earth which can express the nature of the 
jiifinite God,_nor is there any voice or reason that can adequately 
explain so great a mystery. 

GRH. (I, 209): "We must make a distinction between a class 
of a posteriori declarations and proofs, by which this mystery, first 
revealed in the Scriptures, is in a manner explained and shown to 
be not absurd; and, on the other hand, accurate a priori demon 
strations, according to which we absolutely deny that this can be 
investigated or proved by us." The Church Fathers sought for 
traces of the Trinity in the creature, and found what they regarded 
as reflections of it (imagine*), in intellectual and rational creatures, 
and traces of it (vestigia), in irrational creatures. As to the argu 
ments thence derived, GRH. says (III, 224): " (a) They only illus 
trate, they do not provej J^j there is in them more unlikeness than 
likeness; (c) they are derived a posterior^ not a priori; they are not 
^he parents, but the offspring of thought; (d) we must use them 
prudently and cautiously; (e) they cannot be presented against an 
adversary, they can delight a believer." Accordingly, the question 

Whether Thomas Aquinas was right in saying that what the Christian 
faith declares of the Trinity could be proved from natural reason to be not 
impossible," is thus answered, "Among Christians, instructed in 
the Word of God, and embracing by faith the mystery of the 

; X 



Trinity, this can be proved by means of natural reasons; but 
among the heathen, ignorant of the Trinity, and among heretics, 
obstinately denying it, it can scarcely be proved; for the fact that 
they pronounce it absurd and impossible, occurs because they pre 
sume to judge of this mystery from the principles of reason, with 
out the light of the heavenly Word. 

QUEN. (I, 318): "These natural agreements, and the analogy 
of created things to this mystery of faith, do not generate faith, but 
only human opinion." 

[6] CHMN. (I, 33): . . . "Because we must think of God as 
He has revealed Himself, we believe, acknowledge, confess, arid 
call upon three persons. "... Although the Trinit^y is a mystery 
beyond the reach of reason, yet we learn through it what concep 
tions God wishes us to form concerning Him. MEL. (Loc. Th., I, 
19): "The Church acknowledges God as such an eternal and 
omnipotent Creator as He has revealed Himself to be, and, although 
we cannot thoroughly understand these mysteries, yet in this life, 
God wishes this our knowledge and worship of Him to be begun 
and to be distinguished from that which is false; and in His Word 
He has propounded, by infallible testimonies, a revelation, in 
which we, as the unborn infant in the maternal womb, drawing 
nutriment from the umbilical vessels, might sit inclosed and draw 
the knowledge of God and life from the Word of God, in order to- 
worship Him as He has made Himself known." 

[7] KG. (30): "The necessity of believing this doctrine is such 
that it not only cannot be denied, but even cannot be ignored by 
any one without a loss of salvation. John 17: 3; John 5:11, 12;. 
1 John 2: 23; John 5: 23; 2 T^ess. 1:8." More detailed, GRH. 
(Ill, 209): " It is necessary for all who are to be saved, to know 
and believe the mystery of the Trinity: (a) we exclude from men 
who are to be saved, not only those who deny, but also those who 
are ignorant of the Trinity . . . (6) we do not require of all 
members of the Church an equal degree of knowledge, since the 
light of spiritual knowledge and faith is brighter in some and more 
obscure in others; (c) nor do we require of those who are to be 
saved a perfect and full comprehension and an intuitive knowledge 
of this mystery, since we cannot attain this in this life . . . but 
we assert only this, that for the catholic faith, necessary to all who 
are to be saved, not a confused and implied, but a distinct and 
explicit knowledge of the three persons of the Godhead is re 
quired." The reason (III, 210): "Whoever is ignorant of the 
mystery of the Trinity does not acknowledge God as He has re 
vealed Himself in His Word, and is ignorant of the definition of 
; 2 3 - /^^-a-o^*t *A** *V^ /*#* 


God given in the Scriptures. The mystery of the Trinity being 
ignored or denied, the entire economy of salvation is ignored or 
denied." (211.) 

[8] CHMX. (Loc. Th., I, 36): "Even in ancient times it offended 
many that the Church, in speaking of the article of the Trinity, 
was not content with the simple peculiar phraseology which the 
Son of God Himself employed when revealing the doctrine con 
cerning God, and which the Holy Ghost followed in the prophets 
and apostles; but that it introduced into the Church foreign appel 
lations from the irreligious schools of the heathen . . . and the 
orthodox fathers were oppressed with great hatred by the heretics 
on this specious pretext, viz. , that the Church ought not to believe 
concerning the inaccessible light of the Godhead otherwise than 
as the Godhead Himself, coming forth from the hidden abode 
of His majesty,, has manifested Himself; neither ought it [the 
Church] to speak otherwise, but that it should imitate the lan 
guage of the Holy Ghost, and, therefore, express also the very 
words in just so many syllables and letters. For neither ought the 
weakness of the human mind to assume this to itself, viz., in regard 
to these mysteries placed above and beyond the sight of human 
intelligence, to hope to be able to speak more becomingly and skil 
fully than the Son of God Himself, who alone knows the Father, 
and has revealed to us what we know of God, or the Holy Ghost, 
who alone knows the things which are of God (1 Cor. 2: 10), and 
searches also the very depths of God. . . . Both Arius and Sabel- 
lius had a specious pretext: We speak of divine mysteries in no 
other way than God Himself speaks in Scripture. Moreover, we 
have been cast out of the Church for no other reason than that we 
were not willing to mingle philosophy with the doctrine of the 
Church, i. e. , we are not willing to confess one essence and three 
persons, because Scripture is ignorant of these heathenish appella 
tions. We must consider whence, with what purpose, and for 
what reasons, these foreign terms were received; and, in order that 
we may understand the entire matter better, let us observe two 
things: 1. What Cyril says with very great force, that, although 
these terms are not found in Scripture, with such a meaning, yet, 
that the things themselves, which the Church understands and 
signifies by these terms, have been expressly laid down and re- 
yealed in Scripture. 2. That the Church departed from the simple 
usage of Scriptural words, not from any wanton affectation of nov 
elty, but as Augustine elegantly and truly says^ that, , by the neces 
sity of speech, these terms were acquired from the Greeks and 
Latins, because of the errors and snares of heretics. ..^. . The 

&O-tSw^-fo -^-c * 



Church would have preferred to, use such simplicity of speech, so 
that, as it believes, so it might also speak, viz. , that there is 

God, the Father, Son^and Holy Ghost. But contests of heretics arose,* 
attacking partly the unity of God, and partly the Trinity, yet so artfulM 
that when they confessed that there is one God, they understood it as though* 
there icere a plurality of gods, nevertheless called one God, just as the heart 
of believers is called one, Acts 4: 12 . . . Because, therefore, the heretics 
spake with the Church, and yet believed differently, and by means of forms 
of expression, resembling the truth, as Nazianzen says, spread poison se 
cretly among the inexperienced, icho suspected no evil when they heard these 
men speak in the very same words which the Church uses; the men of the 
Church endeavored to find in Scripture terms by which they might draw 
forth from ambush the lurking heretics, so as to prevent them from deceiv 
ing by ambiguous phrases the unwary. And because Scripture thus 
speaks, 2 Peter 1: 4; Gal. 4: 8, they said that there is one divine 
nature. But this term they corrupted by sophistries, and by dis 
tinguishing between God and nature, as when it is said that God 
and nature have done nothing in vain. Likewise, in 1 John 5: 7, 
it is written: There are three, etc. And because in the words of 
Baptism it is said: Baptizing them in the name of the Father, 
etc. , they said that there are three names . . . Sabellius received 
this, but understood that one and the same person is rpiuw^ [pos 
sessed of three names] , just as one and the same man has a prxno- 
meii, a nomen, and a cognomen . . . Afterwards it began to be said 
that there were not only three names, but also three peculiar signifi 
cations of the names. Sabellius conceded also this, but in this sense, 
viz., just as the soul has three powers, each one of which has its 
own peculiarities, and yet there* is only one soul. And thus, the 
heretics who certainly did not believe aright concerning these arti 
cles of faith, spake in the very same words in which the Church 
spake, and, by this deception, instilled their poison into many 
unwary ones, who feared no evil, because they heard the same 
words that are recorded in Scripture, and are proclaimed in the 
Church. What was the Church to do under these circumstances ? 
It is very certain that it was her plain duty to defend against 
heretics that faith concerning the article of the Trinity which 
the Holy Ghost revealed in the Scriptures. But this could 
not be done in the words of Scripture, because of the petulance of 
heretics, who cunningly evaded all the words of Scripture, so that 
they could not be convicted and held fast, and who meamvhile led 
captive, by this artifice, the minds of the simple. Therefore, it icas 
neccxxiini to seek for such terms as might express, in some other manner., 
the facts delivered concerning this article, in Scriture ; so that heretics 

40 /XW^^**^ ^^ THE TRINITY. 


no< frg afofe, by a deceitful interpretation, to elude them . . . 
Because, therefore, in God there is a divine nature, common to\^ 
H Father, Son, and Holy Ghost and entire in each, and nevertheless, 

\j Father, Son, and Holy Ghost are distinguished by certain proper 
ties, in such a manner that the Father is not the Son, nor the Son 
^ the Father, and the Holy Ghost is neither Father nor Son, etc. ; the 

^ Church, on the maturest consideration, has transferred these terms /S 

(oima; vTToaraaif ) from the common usage of speech to the article of \* 

>J \ N 

5 the Trinity, on account of, as Augustine says, the artifices and v 
. \ errors of heretics, in order that thus even the more simple might^J 

be able to observe the rule of Athanasius: Neither confounding 
the persons, nor dividing the substance. ^ 

f 7 [9] CHMN. (Loc. Th., I, 33): "Neither is it something new. J ; 

devised by the Council of Nice (as some blasphemously assert that 
the doctrine of the Trinity was first framed in the Councils of Nice 
and Constantinople), _wliile^ before that^ the Church piously be- 
lieved that there was one God. But we solemnly declare that it is 
the most ancient and constant harmonious testimony of the Church 
from the very beginning." 

[10] GRH. (Ill, 236)7 "Do terms derived from the ordinary 
usage of language, and adapted to this mystery, retain in this ap 
plication in every respect the same signification? Reply: By no N! 
means, but the Church presents them with the right to its citizen-/) 
ship, and uses them in a peculiar signification." N^ 

CHMN. (Loc. Th., I, 38): "As the Church speaks of subjects of v 
which reason is ignorant, it also employs these terms in a sense "> 
somewhat different from that in which they have commonly been^ 
used." * , 

[11] A general survey of the doctrine is presented, by Baierx 
(208) under the following heads: \ 

I. That the Father differs really from the Son, the Son from^J 
^ the Father, and the Holy Ghost from both; so that one is in fact 

N Father, another Son, and another Holy Ghost. (Christ says that ^ 
^ the Father is other than Himself, John b: 32, 37, and that the^ 
^ Holy Ghost is other than Himself and the Father, John 14: 16. 
The same is manifest from the names of the Father and the Son, ^ 
and that the former 4s described as begetting, and the latter as be- , 
gotten, Ps. 2: 7; John 1: 14, 18; 3: 16. The Son was sent from 
the Father, Je|t 16: 36; G_al. 4: 4. The Holy Ghost proceeds ^ 
from the Father, John 15: 26; is sent by the Father, John 14: 26, ^j 
and by the Son, 15: 26.) 

II. That not only the Father, but also the Son and 
Ghost, are true and, eternal 



III. That the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost are not three gods, 
but one God." 

GRH. (I, 194): "The general theory will be comprised under 
the following heads: (1) That there is one undivided essence of 
these three persons. (2) That these three persons are truly and 
really distinct from each other. (3) That they are distinguished 
by their own personal properties." 

[12] Wejmust jcaref ully distinguish triune from three/old, which 
signifies: composed of three! GRH. (Ill, 254): "We say that 
God is triune, but we are forbidden, by the Christian roligion. to 
say that He is threefold. 

[13] Essence: civ/a, also substance, <t>raic, nature. GRH. (ITT, 
251): "Moreover, they preferred to use the name essence rather 
than substance (a) to indicate that God is an m>aia virepovmof [an 
essence superior to essence], not included in the categories among 
which substance is first; (6) because God, unlike the essences of 
created things, does not exist beneath (substat) accidents, but His 
attributes are His very essence; (c) because the name substance is 
ambiguous, for it is sometimes put for ovala t and sometimes for 

HOLL. (284): "The word essence, ofo/a, is not indeed found in 
Holy Scripture in just so many letters, but nevertheless is derived 
from it by easy inference. For (a) in the Old Testament God is 
called illiT essentiator ; therefore he has an essence, and that, too, 
an independent .essence, etc.; (6) in the New Testament God is 
named Q v, Rev. 1: 8, from which ovaia, or essence, is derived; (>) a 
synonym of divine essence is yvats fe/n, divine nature, 2 Pet. 1: 4." 

[14] GRH. (Ill, 239): "X great, yea an infinite distinction 
presents itself in the predicates, when I predicate of three human 
individuals, humanity, or human nature, and when I predicate of 
the three persons of the Godhead, a divine nature, or essence. 
The essence of men is a universal term, which does not actually 
exist per se, but is only inferred in thought and conceived of by 
the intellect. But essence, in that which is divine, is not an imagin 
ary something, as genus or species, but actually exists, although it 
is communicable." CHMN. (Loc. Th., I, 39): "Therefore the 
Church understands by the term essence not a universal term, as 
philosophers name human essence, but a divine nature truly ex 
isting, which is communicable and common to three persons, and 
is entire in each. But ichat this is with respect to the definition of the 
matter, I say is not known, unless ice say that the attributes given in the 
definition of God are the very essence of God. 1 1 "The essence with re : 
sped to divine persons (a) is not a species, because the persons of the 

/?/ <y^/>X^v J jO/)**^ ^rf-r-7 r -~/j?-*V 

^^<J~/7/& ~~~*>. 7 * 


Trinity do not share essence in the manner that individuals share 
a"common nature, which diffuses itself in no way beyond that of 
which ills a part, as it were; as, man is a species of animal, and 
Peter is an individual of the human species. (^) It is not predi- 
cated of many individuals differing in numerical essence, as three 
men are said to~differ~mliumber. (?) It is not predicated in the 
plural form of individuals, Jor the three persons are not three gods 
or three divine essences, as Peter, Paul, etc. (<>) Neither does it 
belong to either jnpre or less than three persons; while human 
essence is not restricted to a di-u-rminate number of persons. Of a 
man I cannot say that all humanity is in him, but of a person of 
the Godhead I can correctly affirm that all the fulness of the God 
head is in Him. The reason rests upon the infinity of the divine 
essence. In three human individuals the essence is one, not in 
number, but one only in species; but in the three persons of the 
Godhead, there is an essence one in number and absolutely un 
divided. Human persons are distinguished by substance, time, 
will, accidents of mind and body, etc. Thus, the substance of 
Peter is different from that of Paul; . . . but in the Trinity per 
sons are not thus distinguished, for the Son is o^mi-cio-, ouwouwf, 
ovvaifaof with the Father. ... Of human persons it cannot be said 
that the one is in the other; but of Himself and His Father, Christ 
says (John 14: 10): I am in the Father, etc. Of human persons 
it cannot be said that, because of their common nature, where the 
one person is, there also is the other; because they are locally dis 
tinct: but of Himself and the Father, Christ declares (John 8: 29): 
The Father hath not left me alone. Of human persons it cannot 
be said that, because of their common nature, he who honors the 
one honors also the other, nay rather one can be honored while 
the other is treated with contempt; but of Himself and the Father, 
Christ says (John 5: 23): He that honoreth not the Son, honor- 
eth not the Father that hath sent Him. 

[15] GRH. (I, 194): "The essence of the three persons of the 
Godhead is one and undivided. . . . For, if there are three per 
sons of the Godhead, and, nevertheless, the true God is only one, 
it follows thence that there is one essence of the three persons of 
the Godhead. If there were one essence of the Father, another 
of the Son, another of the Holy Ghost, one of the two alternatives 
would undoubtedly follow, viz. : either that there is not one true 
God, or that the Son and Holy Ghost are excluded from the true 

GRH. (Ill, 238): "The word (ow a), used of God, signifies an 

essence common to the three persons of the Godhead, one innum- 

S-3L? _ 

<J : 


her and undivided, which does not exist partially in the three 
persons, so that a part of it is in the Father, a part in the Son, 
and a part in the Holy Ghost; but, because of infinity and im 
materiality, is entire in the Father, entire in the Son, and entire 
in the Holy Ghost." 

CHMN. (Loc. Th., I, 43) cites as different modes of expression 
employed with reference to the unity of God, the following: One 
and indistinguishable nature; one and the same substance; simple, 
one and undivided divinity; one and indifferent essence; in essence 
there is unity; there are three persons, co-eternal and co-equal; 
three persons, of one substance and inseparable equality, one God; 
the divinity of the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, is one; their 
glory, equal; their majesty, co-eternal; in this Trinity nothing is 
before, nothing after, nothing greater or less, but the entire three 
persons are co-equal and co-eternal to each other. John 10: 30: 
I and my Father are one, viz., -in essence, will, power, and 
work." On the other hand, he notes as false, the expressions: 
"In essence, He is singular; there are three, eternal, immense, 
etc. ; three Gods, three Lords; essence is distinguished into Father, 
Son, and Holy Ghost: in divinity, there is before and after, that 
is greater and less. 

[16] GRH. (Ill, 257): "There are three, to each of whom be 
longs the name of Jehovah and God, and, likewise, truly divine 
attributes, works, and glory, viz., the Father, Son, and Holy 
Ghost." Therefore, essence is thus denned: BR. (217): " Ev the 
name essence or ovcia, there is meant the divine nature, as it is 
absolutely in itself, all of which, with i te attributes, is most simply 
one and singular, and, thus, also of the three persons the essence 
is only one; so, indeed, that there is also one intellect of the 
Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, by which they understand; one 
will of the three, by which they wish; and one power, by which 
they operate outside of the divine essence." 

QUEN. (I, 321): " The divine essence itself is that pertaining to 
God, by which God is what He is." 

HOLL. (284): "The essence of God is God s spiritual and inde 
pendent nature, common to the three divine persons, Father. Son, 
and Holy Ghost." 

[17] HFRFFR. (48): "Plurality in the unity of divinity is not 
accidental, for God is most absolute and simple, and no accidents 
occur in Him. Therefore, since there are no accidents, no plurality 
can arise hence." 

[18] HFRFFR. (48): "Plurality in unity of the divinity is 
hypostatic, i. e., of persons, ior the essence, indeed, of the divinity 


is one, but the persons are plural; and, therefore, in the mystery 
of the divinity there are, indeed, distinct persons, but not distinct 
things. For the person of the Father is one, and the person of 
the Son, another, and the person of the Holy Ghost, another; yet 
they are not different things, but the essence of all the persons 
is one." 

By person, vKocTam?, there is understood, "an individual, intelli 
gent, incommunicable substance, which is not sustained, either 
upon another or from another/ Thus CHMN., (Loc. Th., I, 39). 
This definition is thus explained by SELN. (I, 76): " A substance 
is said to be individual and peculiar, in order to distinguish it from 
accident, and to remove the error of those who have thought that 
person signifies only a distinction of employments. It is said to 
be incommunicable, on account of the distinction of persons, be 
cause the Father does not communicate His hypostasis to the Son, 
or Holy Ghost, but each person has His own peculiar subsistence 
and being; although essence itself is said to be communicable " 
("the subsistence of one person cannot be communicated to 
another person, for the reason that each person possesses a peculiar 
and ultimate act of subsistence, so that it cannot be farther deter 
mined by another person.") HOLL. (284): "Not sustained by 
another, excludes the opinion of those who think that as there are 
two natures in Christ, so also there are two persons." 

HOLL. (284): "An intelligent suppositum: a stone, a tree, a horse, 
are. indeed, called supposita, but not persons, because they are with 
out intellect/ 

A still more accurate distinction is made between person, regarded 
materially, or in the concrete, and person, considered formally, or in the 
abstract. HOLL. (ib. ): "A person, considered materially, is an in 
telligent xtipposttum. But a suppositum is a v^ord^vov^ or a subsist 
ence, singular, incommunicable, not sustained by another (a sin 
gular subsistence, not a singular substance ; for person, considered in 
the concrete sense, is not a substance, but a vfyiarafievov, a singular 
subsistence, which consists of substance and an ultimate mode of 
subsisting. We call a person a singular v^iordfitvav, and not an indi 
vidual; because the latter implies a logical reference to a particular 
species, which is predicated of the individual. But God is not 
predicated of the divine persons, under the mode of species, nor do 
these differ in essences, diverse in number, just as do individuals). 
But formally or abstractly considered, a person. is an independent 
and communicable subsistence of singular, complete, and intelli 
gent substance." 

The meaning of this distinction will be more clearly apparent 


from the definitions of i^oaraaic: that we shall presently cite from 
QUEN. : In the latter case, that is made particularly prominent 
which constitutes the one person a person, in distinction from the 
other; while, in the former case, the intention is not so much to 
indicate this distinction as rather to assert the personality of the 
Divine Esssence. The term, person, .is employed abstractively, if I 
say the Father is a^f^-or, for then I mention that which distin 
guishes Him from the other persons; it is employed concretively, if 
I say the Father is almighty; for in that case it is, indeed, also 
asserted that God is a person, and the hypostatical character of the 
person is asserted also in the word Father, yet in the statement I 
am more concerned to assert something concerning the Divine Es 
sence, and not so much concerned to give prominence to the per 
sonal distinction. 

The term vitforaaiq is employed in doctrinal writings as synony 
mous with person, but strictly speaking there is still a difference 
between them. HOLL. (285): "According to the testimony of 
Damascenus, the Fathers called the same thing hypostasis and per 
son. Nevertheless, person differs from hypostasis, in this, that 
hypotasis is common to an intellectual nature, and to one destitute 
of reason; but person is affirmed only of an intellectual nature." 

QUEN. (I, 320): "Y7r<forgq<f is received either in the concrete, or 
materially, when it implies, at the same time, an object itself and 
the mode of the object, and marks an essence, distinguished by a 
hypostatic character, i. e. , a person, in the sense in which Christ is 
said to be x n pnKrf/p rf t q vTToordoew Qeov^ Heb. 1:3; or, abstractly and 
formally, when it designates personality or substance itself, which 
is an act, mode, or ultimate degree, in which an intelligent nature 
subsists completely and incommunicably. In this signification the 
word i TTooTaois is not employed in Scripture, yet can be correctly 
inferred from its material signification; but, in this mystery, vwapftf 
is the same as i-6o-aa^.^ 

The Greek and Latin Fathers did not at once agree in the usage 
of the terms here employed and in the distinction between vKforaaiq 
and !>vaia. It was only from the time of Athanasius that the ex 
pressions were uniformly used in the sense above given. 

BR. (216): "Although the Greeks and Latins contended for 
awhile with each other (for the former thought that by the name, 
person, there was designated among the Latins an occupation or 
external habit, and on this account, three persons did not imply or 
express the real distinction of Father, Son, and Holy Ghost; but 
the Latins thought that v-daraatt, in the nominative case, denoted 
the essence itself, so that if three vTr6aTaaeie are admitted, three 


essences must be affirmed), nevertheless, afterwards, when they 
understood each other better, it came to pass that the Greeks spoke 
of rpia 7rpd<7W7ro, and the Latins of three hypostases." 

[19] CHMN. (Loc. Th., I, 39): "Thus, in the Church, the term 
imdoraois, or person, is used in a different sense from the usage of 
common speech. Among men we know what a person is ; among 
angels we understand what it is. Peter, Paul, and John are three 
persons to whom one human nature is common. But they differ 
very much, (1) in substance, because one entirety is distinct from 
another (totus a toto), (2) in time, (3) in will, (4) in power, (5) in 
work. . . . But in the Trinity, persons are not thus distinguished, 
as an angel from an angel, and a man from a man (nor do they 
differ in time, will, power, work; but, in the persons of the Trinity, 
there is co-eternity, one will, one pjower, one workingj. Likewise, 
in creatures, it does not follow that where one person is, there, 
because of their common nature, the others also are. And this 
distinction must necessarily be observed; for the mystery at which 
even the angels are astonished, would not be so great, if the one 
essence were three persons, in the manner that Michael, Gabriel, 
Raphael are three persons, to whom one angelic nature is common 
and equally belongs." 

In reference to the two terms, "essence" and person," CHMN. 
remarks (Loc. Th., I, 39): " These are grammatical observations, 
not idle exhibitions of acuteness; but if they have no other, they 
yet have this use, that, with the foundations thoroughly known, 
we can speak very cheerfully with the Church for the sake of har 
mony. But, if any one would cavil that the terms essence and 
person are not sufficiently peculiar to designate this hidden mys 
tery of unity and Trinity, he has this reply that Augustine gives: 
Human language labors from its absolutely great poverty. Never 
theless the term, "three persons," has been adopted not for the 
purpose of expressing this, but so as not to keep altogether silent 
concerning it. For, by this term, the eminence of an ineffable 
matter cannot be expressed. 

[20] CHMN. (Loc. Th., I, 39). The persons of the divinity do 
not ditTiT essentially as in creatures, where each one has his own 
peculiarity, nor is there only a distinction of reason therein as 
Sabellius wished; but they are really distinguished, nevertheless 
in a manner incomprehensible and unknown to us." 

QUEN. (I, 326): "They are distinguished really, i. e., they are 
distinct from each other, even when all operation of the human 
intellect ceases. 

[21] CHMN. (Loc. Th., I, 42): "The persons are distinguished, 


not only by interior, but also by exterior marks, derived espec 
ially from revelation and their benevolent works in behalf of the 

[22] QUEN. (I, 414): "Personal divine actions ad intra are those 
which are limited to God Himself, in such a manner that they, 
nevertheless, as a source of action, pertain to the divine essence, 
not in so far as it is common to all three persons, but as it has 
been determined by certain hypostatic characters and properties. 
Hence, these personal works ad intra have been divided, i. e. , they 
are not common to three divine persons, but are peculiar to only 
one person or to two persons. 

As, in Note 20 above, the question was concerning the distinction 
between the single persons, so here the question is concerning the 
distinction between essence and person. 

QUEN. (I, 326) answers: "A divine person is distinguished in 
one way from essence, and in another way from another person ; 
from the former not in fact but in thought, with its foundation in 
fact; but from the latter actually, even when all operation of the 
human intellect ceases." The former distinction is a distinction 
not actually, or from the nature of the thing itself, nor moduli y, 
but in thought, which is proved as follows: for, if the relation of 
paternity, filiation, and procession were really distinguished from 
the divine essence, then something real would be superadded to it, 
and in the divine persons which are constituted by these relations, 
and, therefore, in God Himself, there would be a real compound 
ing." (I, 327). . . "Thus divine essence and relations are 
actually one thing, and the former is separated from the latter in 
thought and the apprehension of the mind alone; or, in other 
words, by our mode of conception, yet in such a manner that the 
foundation and occasion of the distinction exists in fact." 

(Id.) (328): "The true and real distinction of the divine per 
sons does not introduce a division or multiplication of the divine 
essence. For God is not divided into three persons, but the three 
persons, distinct from each other, undividedly share the essence, 
one in number undivided and infinite, in such a manner that each 
person has the same essence, without its multiplication or division. 
For, in this mystery, several persons are considered hypostatically, 
not several things essentially. But these three really distinct per 
sons are and remain opoovaioi." 

[23] QUEN. (I, 415): " External actions ad extra, or emanent and 
transient actions, are those which both relate to an object outside of 
God, and are performed outside of God, prodticing or leaving an 
effect outside of God. 


GRH. (I, 199): "These works are undivided, because in them 
the three persons are together and work together. ... In God 
there is so great unity, and so great power of one and the same 
essence, that to individual persons individual and peculiar works, 
which are wrought separately in creatures, ought hy no means to 
be assigned;" whence follows the statement: By one person, 
named in works ad extra, the entire Trinity is meant." QUEN. 
(I, 328): "The reason of this rule is the unity of the divine 
essence, the common participation in the power to act, the equality 
of the operations, and the identity of the works of Father, Son, 
and Holy Ghost; and, hence, there then follows an equality of 
denomination. Nevertheless, this clause must be added to the 
rule of Augustine: The order and distinction of persons being 
preserved; for, inasmuch as the Father has an essence from Him 
self, therefore He also acts of Himself, the Son acts and works 
from the Father, and the Holy Ghost from both. John 5: 19." 

By the addition of this clause: "the order and distinction of 
persons being preserved," the canon, "the works ad extra are un 
divided, is more accurately denned ; for the Dogmaticians do not 
wish directly to call in question the statement that even in the 
works ad extra the distinction of persons may be recognized. Not 
without reason, do they believe that in the Scriptures a work ad 
extra is ascribed to the one person and not to another; and the 
difference which, notwithstanding all the oneness of essence, is yet 
indicated in the order which is assigned in the Scriptures to the 
single persons, and in accordance with which the Father is placed 
first, the Son second, etc. , seems to them to indicate also a differ 
ence in the order and in the manner in which the single persons 
work. So CHMN. already states (Loc. Th., I, 42): "Works ad 
extra are considered, as Luther has remarked, in a twofold manner: 
First, absolutely, and thus they are without distinction, and are 
called works of the three persons in common. Secondly, relatively, 
when they are considered in the order in which the persons act, or 
with reference to what is the property of each person, and which 
person acts immediately. The order in working and the relation in 
which the three persons stand to a work ad extra, the Dogmaticians 
find most clearly stated in Rom. 11; 36, where they refer the % to 
the Father, the faa to the Son, and the lv to the Holy Ghost. 
CHMN. (Loc. Th., I, 42) : " For, as the apostle speaks of workifad 
extra, he makes mention of one eternal essence; to Him be honor, 
not to them. And, nevertheless, as the essence is one, without 
confusion of persons, it performs works ad extra, common to the 
three persons, without confusion, but implying a distinction of per- 


sons, of Him, and through Him, and to Him. ... In fine, as 
we believe that there is unity of essence, and, nevertheless, ought 
not to admit a confusion of persons, we must understand also the 
rule, that works ad extra are common to the three persons, yet in $uch a_ 
manner that the <li*tinrtionx tmd properties of (fie perxon* he not roitr- 
founded. The Dogmaticians remark, in general, that sometimes 
in the Scriptures there is predicated of one person an attribute or 
an act, from which, however, the other persons are by no means to 
be excluded, inasmuch as this attribute or act pertains to the- 
Divine Essence and does not peculiarly belong to the one person. 
Whence they draw the inference that nevertheless this attribute 
must pertain to the one or to the other person in a more eminent 
sense, either because it belongs more especially to the one or the 
other person, in accordance with the order which we assign to the 
three persons, or because in a certain sense it more especially be 
longs to the mode of existence (T^OTTO? vndpfeus) of a particular per 
son. The Dogmaticians say, in this case, that this occurs through 
appropriation. GRH. (I, 203). " Hence certain essential attributes 
are appropriated by the ecclesiastical writers to each person,, 
although, because of the identity of essence, the essential attributes 
are common to the three persons." Thus there is specially appro 
priated to the Father, power; to the Son, love; to the Holy Spirit, 

Still another case is mentioned by QUEN. (I, 415): " Personal 
actions ad extra are, in a certain respect and manner, also essential 
or common to all three persons, viz. , by reason of efficieiwy or source^ 
and inchoatively ; but they are personal or peculiar to any one divine 
person by reason of thexr end, m terminatwely, because they are ter 
minated in a certain person. Thus, the Spirit appeared only in 
the visible form of a dove. The voice from heaven, This is my 
beloved Son, belonged to the person of the Father alone, and the 
Son of God alone appeared under the form and habit of man, in 
the time of the Old Testament, and in that of the New Testament 
was born of the Virgin Mary, and was made flesh. But, neverthe 
less, the entire Trinity was operative, with regard to that flesh of 
the Son alone, and that voice of the Father alone, and that form 
of a dove of the Holy Ghost alone." 

[24] Flic Dogmatiriaiis in part distinguish also M \vrrn tin- 
hypostatical characteristics or personal qualities and the personal nota 
tions. By the former, they understand those peculiarities which 
one person possesses having distinct reference tc another, and by 
the latter, the marks by which, in general, one person can be 
recognized as distinct from another. Thus QUEN. (I, 330) : "Some 


personal properties are absolute, which have no relation to another 
person; such a property is dyewyaia , and the not being born (innas- 
cibilitas}, with respect to the Father, likewise the not being breathed 
(inspirabilitas), with respect to Father and Son. Other personal 
properties are relative, which have respect to another person, and 
constitute an order of things producing and being produced, of 
which there are only three; paternity, filiation, and procession." 

HOLL. (285) distinguishes: " Personal properties, i. e., relations 
founded upon a personal act, constituting a person in the being 
,,,,, , of a certain person, and, 1-y relative opposition, introducing 
a distinction from another person " (of such he-enumerates three: 
paternity, filiation, and procession), and "personal notations, i. e., 
ni sles of recognizing the divine persons and distinguishing them 
ml //<</." These, taken in a wider sense, and constitutively of 
each person, in the being (esse) of such person, comprehend the 
personal properties, and as such are regarded the five enumerated 
in the text. More strictly taken, however, or significatively, i. e., 
such as do indeed describe the divine persons and indicate the dis 
tinction between them, but still do not constitute a person, in the 
being of such person, they are distinct from the personal proper 
ties. Of these there are two, viz. , ayewncia and spiratio activa. 

[25] QUEN. (I, 327): "From the real distinction of persons, 
arises their order, both in subsisting and in operating. Neverthe 
less, we must distinguish between the order of nature, of time, of 
dignity, of origin, and of relation. Ajn^n^jthe jdiyine_ persons, 
there is not an order of nature, because, they are < /""" """ [consub- 
stantial]; nor of time, because they are co-eternal; nor of dignity, 
ber-ause they have the same honor. But there its among them <m order 
of origin and relation^ because the Father is of no one, the Son is of 
the Father, and the Holy Ghost is of both. An order among the 
divine persons in subsisting is proved from the procession or ema 
nation of one "person from the other. For. if the Father proceeds 
from no one, but has His essence of Himself, as the fountain and 
source of the Holy Trinity, and the Son has His essence of the 
Father by eternal generation, and the Holy Ghost has the same of 
the Father and the Son, by eternal procession, it follows that the 
Father is the first, the Son the second, and (he Holy Ghost the JMrd per 
son, and this order, both fixed in nature itself and unchangeable^ 
is clearly shown in the" formula of baptism. Matt. 28: 19." 
Concerning the order in working, which is recognized in the use 
of the diacritical particles ef, &<i, v, we have already spoken in 
Note 23. 

[26] GRH. (111,243): " The term fyoovoios embraces both ideas, 

i^Jc-^*^ fa ~acsf~K*-^. 


viz. , that the Son is of a distinct person from the Father, and that 
He is of the same essence with the Father. 

(Id. ) : " For the Father and the Son are not trepmatoi of different 
or diverse essence; they are not awoioiot, as men who have one com 
mon essence, nor only i>[ioiovmoi, of like substance, but d/wovaioi, having 
the same essence, eternity, will, work, power, and glory. 

[CHMN. (I, 43): "By this term, the unity of the essence is sig 
nified, viz. , that there is one eternity, one will, a common operation, 
and equal glory, and, at the same time, the distinction of persons 
is indicated."] 

[27] QUEN. (I, 328) further adds, as a consequence of ofimvaia; 
1 i The most perfect communion of all essential perfections, and the 
identity both of the divine works ad extra and the mode of action, 
so that they do the same things and in like manner; John 5: 19, 
although not in the same order." Concrming the latter. s<v In-low. 

In the Treptxupqoif the Dogmaticians usually also distinguish T. 
e^entialis, the absolutely unique immanence of one divine person 
in the other," and " *. personalis, that inmost and ineffable perme 
ation, by which the divinity of the 7-oyop intimately permeates, in 
habits, and perfects the assumed human nature." The discussion 
of the latter does not belong here. 

[28] HOLL. (301): "The name, Father, is received here not 
ovciutuq. or essentially, but t>To<mm/tuf, or personally. The name, Father, 
essentially taken, belongs not to the first person alone of the Godhead, 
but to all the divine persons equally; inasmuch as, received in this 
sense, it introduces a relation to creatures, of whom God is said to 
be the Father, both on account of creation, as the angels are re 
garded sons of God, Job 38: 7, and on account of regeneration and 
adoption, as converted and regenerate men, by means of the merit 
of Christ, apprehended by faith, have obtained this ttjovaia, power or 
dignity, to become the sons of God, John 1 : 12. But personally 
received, the name, Father, is peculiar to the first divine person, and 
introduces a relation to the consubstantial Son, whom He begat 
from His essence, as His image, whose tdto? irar^p, own Father, He 
is called, John 5: 18." 

[29] QUEN. (I, 332): The characteriatAe of the Father ad extra is 
manifested in the work of creation, preservation, and of the govern 
ment of this universe. For the work of creation is ascribed to the 
Father, in a peculiar manner, in the Holy Scriptures and the 
Apostles Creed, i. e., not exclusively, nor E^O^KWC, or only particu 
larly, much less as a principal cause, so that the Son is only an 
instrument, but on account of personal order, because the Father, 
through the Son and Holy Ghost, has created, preserves, and gov- 


erns all things, Gen. 1: 1, 2; P_s. 33: 6; John 1: 3, and because to 
God the Father power is ascribed, which especially shines forth in 

^ creation. 

[30] QUEN. (I, 332): "The second person isHhe Son of God, not 
by viotieaia, or gracious adoption; nor on account of gracious and s 
glorious union with God, and love for thus all the pious, the 
blessed, and the holy angels are sons of God; nor on account of His ^| 

^ wonderful conception by the Holy Ghost in the womb of the Virgin_ v 
Marias the Socinians wish, but through ami on account of a true, J j 
peculiar, essential, most singular [unparalleled] and inexplicable j >L 

S eternal generation, and thus is the Son of God properly, in.-om- - 
municably, and alone. In a few words: He is the Son of God, not 

yj ,l"/" 7/ . "> hy grace, l>ut <-.- . or l>y nature. .!<>hji 1: M, 1JS." 

HOLL. (305) : " Hence, the Son of God is called His own, Rom. 
8: 32; the only begotten, John 1 : 14; existing in the bosom of His 
Father, Jojm 1: 18; the image of the invisible God, and the first- $ j[ 
born of every creature, Col. 1: 15; the brightness of the Father s ^^ 
glory, and the express image of His person, Heb. 1 : 3. 

[311 For this reason, according to HOLL. (322), there is ascribed 
tothe Father, as a hypostatical characteristic, eternal active genera-^ 
tioii, and to the Son, filiation, or passive generation, "by which theX v 
Son of God is produced by the Father, as His substantial image, 5 | 
really and literally, yet _in_ a^ manner hyperphysical and inexpli->^V 
cable, by an eternal communication of one and the same essence. \j^g 

More detailed description of generation. HOLL. (322-325) : The 
generation of the Son of God is not improper, metaphorical, or acci- 
dental (as is the regeneration of sinful men), but i>ro t ,n; true, and 
substantial. Proof: a. He would not be God s own Son, if His 
generation were improper or metaphorical; b. God the Father, in 



producing His Son, communicated to Him His essence in such a 
manner that He is His image; not physical ( which occurs, in 
> matter and out of matter, in time, having relation to that which is 
^before and after, and is an essential change from that which has no , 
\| feeing into a being. QUEN. I, 385), but hyperphysical ( which 
v ^S occurs from eternity, without any succession of time, matter, and 

change, and which consists alone in the communication of essence. _^ , 
QUEN. I, 385); not temporal, but eternal Proof: a. From passages | ^N 
of Scripture which testify that the Son is eternal; b. From the re- ^ X 
lation between the Father and the Son. The first person is the . 
eternal Father, therefore the second person also is the eternal Son ; 
c. Because, otherwise, the essence of the Father would be affirmed 
be changeable, if, in time, He had begun to beget the Son. Fur 
thermore, from Ps. 2:7: The act of generation is described by the. 


to-day, which is employed concerning an internal divine act, a 
generation such as is only during a divine to-day, and, therefore, 
excludes the flow of time, separates from the past and future, and 
denotes a perpetual now, or a day of immutable eternity; not exter 
nal, but innermost (because God the Father produced His own Son, 
not ad extra, but begot Him within His essence; nor is the Son 
separated from the Father, as happens otherwise, but remains in 
His Father s bosom, John 1:18; nor is the Son only in the Father, 
but the Father is also in the Son by the inmost communion and 
mutual xepix&p icis) ; not voluntary, but natural and necessary, (but, if 
the generation of the Son of God were called forth by an act of the 
will, and were free, and were not necessary or natural, the Son 
would not be equal and o/iootwof to the Father, for He exists neces 
sarily and cannot not be. Here it is well to observe that God the 
Father, not being constrained, and, nevertheless, not by the pur 
pose of His free will preceding generation, but from the necessity 
of His nature, which is yet entirely removed from all constraint, 
begat His Son by a most perfect generation . . .)." 

Concerning the eternity of generation, QUEN. (I, 330) says further: 
This generation of the Son does not occur by derivation or trans 
fusion, nor by an action which may begin or cease, but it occurs 
by an unceasing emanation, like which there is nothing to be found 
in nature. For God the Father from eternity begat, and always 
Itcp-ts. Mini never will cease to IHIM His Son. For. if the genera 
tion of the Son should have an end, it would also have a beginning, 
and this would not be eternal. Nevertheless, this generation can 
not be said, for this reason, to be imperfect and successive, for the 
act of generation in the Father and the Son is considered perfect in 
work and constant in operation." The consequence of passive gen 
eration, is the passive Bending forth. QUEN. (I, 338): "The conse 
quence of this passive generation is the passive sending of the Son 
of God into the flesh, which is not accurately the incarnation of the 
same, for they differ as former and latter, He having been first 
sent and, afterwards, made of a woman, Gal. 4: 4." 

NOTE. " The sending forth of the Son of God (1) is not a local 
and separative removal, as though He had been locally removed from 
the highest heaven to the lowest earth, and had been separated 
from His Heavenly Father. For this conflicts with the infinite and 
intimate identity of the persons of the Father and the Son; (2) jt. 
is not an imperious tending forth, but one of free consent, and there 
fore proves, between the one sending and the one sent, no inequal 
ity, such as the Arians once attempted to derive thence, and as the 
Socinians at the present day maintain. In divine things a sending 

/v. forth does not remove equality of persons, but only presupposes an 
order of origin. (3) The sending forth is not constrained^ but is spon 
taneous, John 4: 34; j>: 30; (4) it is not accurately incarnation itself. 
For the sending forth preceded incarnation, and the latter is the 
goal of the former, since the Son was sent forth in order to become 

According to GRH. (I, 288), the difference between to beget and 
to create is: "To beget is, from one s own substance, to produce 
something similar according to essence. To create is to make, out 
of nothing, something different from the substance of the Creator" 
QUEN. (I, 330) says, indeed: "Although this generation is most 
peculiar and most true, yet the mode itself of generation is un 
known to us and ineffable," and yet he attempts, as follows, to 
form at least an approximate conception of it: "This divine gen 
eration, however, can be^ adumbrated by the similitude of rays of 
the sun, flowing from the solar body with a perpetual dependence. 
For, as the sun is not older than its rays, nor the one begetting 
prior, in time, to the one begotten; so, the eternal Father, from 
eternity, generated the Son; and, just as the sun has, from the be 
ginning, generated its own rays, and even now begets them, and 
will continue to generate them, and nevertheless, it cannot be in 
ferred thence that the generation of the rays of the sun is not yet 
perfect, so also, from eternity, God has begotten, and always be 
gets, and will never cease to beget His own Wisdom, and, never 
theless, it cannot on that account be said that the generation of the 
Son is not yet perfect. The Holy Ghost, Ps. 2 : 7, seems to inti 
mate this. In these words, the generation of the Son is expressed 
in the preterite in such a manner that, nevertheless, it is said to 
occur to-day, because the generation of the Son is present, and will 
never cease. Yet there is this great distinction between the two: 
the sun is a substance, but the rays are an accident; whereas the 
substance of the Son is the same with the substance of the Father. 

[32] The hypostatic character of the Holy Ghost is "passive 
spimtion, or the proceeding of the Holy Ghost from the Father and the 
Son, i. e. , the eternal origin of the Holy Ghost, by which He is 
sent forth, within the bosom of the Godhead, by the Father and 
the Son, by the communication of an essence numerically one and 
the same, as the common breath of both." HOLL. (337.) QUEN. 
(Ij 343): "The origin of the Holy Ghost, by which, within the 
Godhead, He receives, through an ineffable procession, from the 
Father and the Son, an essence the same in number." 

HOLL. (337): "It is called passive spiration, not physically, as 
though it implied passive power or imperfection, but grammatically, 

33: 6 - 

2^<y * - * 


because the Holy Ghost is said not to breathe, but to be breathed. 
Xor arc active and passive spiration two spirations, but the spira^ 
tion is one and the same, which, with respect to the source breath 
ing and producing, is called active spiration, and with respect to 
foe end attained, is called passive. In other respects, the emana- 
|J ^tion of the Holy Ghost from the Father and the Son is most 
s * absolute." 

The spiration here understood is not external, like the breath- 
g of Christ upon His disciples, John 20: 22, but internal and 
immanent, since it occurs within the very bosom of the Godhead; 
transitory and evanescent, as is that of breathing men, but eternal 
:nd permanent, because the Holy Ghost proceeds from eternity, as 
the breath of the Almighty, Job 33: 4, and the spirit of the mouth 
^of the Lord, Ps. 33: 6; not an accidental but a substantial spiration, 
Mor in God there is no accident, nor can the Holy Ghost, as a divine 
V ^ ^ person and substance, be produced by an accidental act." 

i C An analogy for the conception of the procession w r as sought by , 

* | ^ some of the Dogmaticians in the going forth of the word from the 

^mouth, and in our spirit. GRH. says, however, concerning the 

^Iproceeds that there is a subsisting person." Of the latter (ibid.): < 
>>* ."The spirit of God is a^arof, of altogether the same nature and ^ 
^essence with Himself, but our spirit is corporeal, because an ex- J 
\fcalation from the most refined and subtle portion of the blood, v 
}and not at all of the same nature with the soul. 

Proof of the procession from Father and Son, HOLL. (337): "Holy ^ 
e teaches in express words, that the Holy Ghost proceeds x| 
God the Father. John 15: 26. That He proceeds from the * 
^Son of God is correctly inferred from the name, the Spirit of the 
^Son (GL 4. 6\ from the teootxrfo of Father and Son (Jojin 16: 15), 
N< .from His reception of omniscience from the Son ( Jofrn 16: 13, 14), : 
i ^from the apocalyptic vision of the river proceeding from the throne j 
: jof the Lamb (Rev 22: 1), from the sending of the Holy Ghost ^ 
[ jirom the Son (John 15: 26), from the breathing of Christ upon v^ 
j^His disciples (John 20: 22), and from the order and distinction of 
1 t >thc divine persons." 

f33] The consequence of the procession is the temporal sending 
(^ forth of the Holy Ghost. QUEN. (I, 331): "The sending forth, in 
^\ time, of the Holy Ghost upon and to the apostles and other be 
lievers, is the manifestation, or consequence and effect, of the 
eternal procession. The latter is eternal and necessary; the 
former is gracious, intermitted, and free, and likewise conditionate; 

"7. .J 


nevertheless this sending forth is not local, and does not introduce 
an inferiority, because it is not ministerial and servile." 

[34] The scriptural proof wo give partly according to GRH., and 
partly according to QUEN. and HOLL. 

In the Old Testament GRH. finds indicated: "Where God is 
spoken of, I. a plurality of persons, and II. when by name, a 
Trinity of persons^ 

I. The plurality is shown (I, 186 seq. ): 

(a) By_ those passages which employ the plural term, Elohim, 
concerning God . . . Gen. 20: 13; 35: 7; Deut. 5: 26; Josh. 24: 
19; 2 Sam. 7: 23; Job 35: 10; Ps. 149: 2; Is. 44: 2; 54: 5; Jor. 
10: 10; 23: 36, Avhere observe that this plural word is not only 
construed with a singular verb in very many passages of Scripture 
(to denote the unity of the divine essence), but even is sometimes 
joined with a plural verb and adjective (to make known more 
clearly the plurality of persons). 

(fe) By the passages in which God speaks of Himself in the 
plural number, Gen. 1: 26; 3: 22; 11: 7; Is. 6: 8. 

(c) By the passages in which God speaks of God, and the Lonj 
of the Lord; for there, in like manner, plurality of persons is 
signified. Gen. 19: 24; Ex. 16: 7; 34: 5, 6; Numb. 14: 21; 2 
Sam. 5: 24; 7: 11; Ps. 45: 7; 110: 1; Jer. 23: 5, 6, 33. 15; Dan. 
9: 17; Hos. 1: 7; Zach. 2: 8, 9. 

(rf) By the passages in which mention is made of the Son of 
God; for it is necessary that He be also true God. Ps. 2:7; 72: 
17; Prov. 30: 4. Finally, there are to be referred hither all the 
testimonies of the Old Testament in which Jehovah is said to send 
an angel, to whom the name Jehovah or divine works are ascribed; 
for then by the name angel is meant the Son of God, who, with the 
Father and the Holy Ghost, is true God. Ex. 23: 20, 21. 

II. The three persons in one essence, are proved (I, 190 sq. ): 

(a) From the passages in which three persons of the Godhead 
are distinctly enumerated, Gen. 1: 1, 2; Ex. 31: 1, 3; 2 Sam. 23: 
2; Ps. 33: 6; Is. 42: 1; 48: 16; (il: 1; 63: 7; Hagg. 2: 5. 

(b) From the passages in which the name of Jehovah and God 
is thrice repeated in one connection; for there, according to the 
corresponding mode of revelation of the Old Testament, three per 
sons of the Godhead are implied. Numb. 6: 23-26; Deut. 6:4; 
Ps. 42: 1, 2; 67: 6, 7; Is. 33: 22; Jer. 33: 2; Dan. 9: 19 

(c) From the Trisagion of the angels. Is._6:Ji. 

(d) From the passages in which God speaks concerning God, 
and the Lord concerning the Lord, as above. I, c. 

But of the Old Testament proof-passages for the Trinity, GRH. 



Till, 218) says in general: " 1. We do not say that in the Old 
Testament and the New Testament there is the same clearness and 
evidence of the testimonies concerning the Trinity; because the 
clearer revelation of this mystery was reserved for the New Testa 
ment. 2. Nor do we wish that, in a discussion with an obstinate 
adversary, a beginning be made with the more obscure statements 
of the Old Testament. But we only assert that from the Old 
Testament some testimonies, in constructing the doctrine of the 
Trinity, both can and ought to be cited, since God always from 
the beginning revealed Himself thus, in order that the Church at 
all times might, in this manner, acknowledge, worship, and praise 
Him, namely, as three distinct persons in one essence." 

In the New Testament there ie shown, I; The Trinity of persons 
in God; and, II. The true divinity ot each person. 

I. The Trinity of persons. 

QUEN. (I, 324 seq ) : The Holy Trinity is proved in three ways: 
(1) From 1 Jojin 5: 1. (2) From the wonderful theophany at the 
baptism of Christ, where three persons of the Godhead are mani 
fested. Matt. 3: 16, 17. (3) From the solemn formula of bap 
tism given by Christ. Matt. 28: 19. But we cannot be baptized 
fir ovopa of the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, unless the name of 
these three, as equal in authority, dignity, and essence, be invoked 
over us. Hence, we argue: He to whose faith, religion, worship, 
and obedience we are bound, ie true God. * 

II. The true divinity of each person. 

1. (QuEN. 1,329): u The Deity of the Father is proved (1) by 
the names peculiar to the true God alone; (2) by attributes, e. g., 
eternity, infinity, omniscience, omnipotence, etc.; (3) by works 
truly and purely divine; (4) by truly divine worship." 

2. (I, 332 sq.): " The Deity of the Son is proved: 

I. F^rom His names. Some names are essential, others personal. 
Those are essential which express the divine nature and essence of 
Christ, Personal names are those which designate His person. 

( 1 ) Divine essential names: In the Old Testament, Christ, the 
branch of David, is called Jehovah, our righteousness. Jer. 23: 6. 
He is called Jehovah, whom Jehovah anointed, J_s. 61: 1, ; 
Adonai, Is. 6: 1-3, cf John 12: 41. In the New Testament^ the 
Son of God. (a) He is called God absolutely, without any limit 
ing or alienating condition. John 1:1; 20: 28. (6) To the divine 
names, the words are added, by which the incarnate Son of God is 
designated. Thus Paul, Acts 20: 28. The same apostle, 1 Tim. 
3: 16; Heb. 2: 14; John 1: 14; 1 John 4: 2, 3. (c) To the diving 
names, epithets are annexed, by which He is declared to be" 

^supreme God. For () Christ is named by St. John the true God 
eternaFlife, 1 John 5: 20. Q?) By St. Paul, the Son of God 

is called the great God. Tit. 2: l. J. (;) \\\ the same apostle, 


rbrist is named (iod over all, blessed forever, Rom. 9:5. lie is 
. called the Lord from heaven, 1 Cor. 15: 47; He is said to be Lord i 
^ :sqf all, Acts 10: 36, and therefore Lord of heaven and earth, which / 

^ls the description of the true God, Matt. 11: 25; Lord of lords and 
^ \\King of kings. Rev. 17: 14; 19: 16. 

(2) Divine personal names: Christ is called in Holy Scriptures, 
(a) God s own Son, Rom. 8: 32; having God as His own Father, 
John 5: 18. (6) The only-begotten Son of the Father, John 1: 14. ^ 
(c) The Son existing in the bosom of the Father, John 1: 18. (d}J 
first-begotten Son, Heb. 1 : 6. (e) The Son above angels, 
J Heb. 1:5. (/) The Son equal to God the Father, John 15: 
^ 17, 18. 

II. From Divine Attributes. 

For the Son of God is: (1) Eternal, Col. 1: 17; Heb. 13: 8; 
5 John 1: 1, 14; Rev. 1: 8. (2) Infinite and omnipresent, John 1: 
X 48; Matt. 18: 20; 28: 20. (3) Immutable, Ps. 102: 27; Heb. 1: 
J 12. (4)_Mostholy, Dan. 9:24. (5) Omnipotent, Rev. 1: 8; John 
10: 28. (6) "Omniscient, John 21: 17; 2: 25. (7) Most happy 

) _and uvrapKtni-n-or [perfectly self-contented], John 16: 15. (8) 
^ Most glorious, 1 Cor. 2: 8; John 17: 5. s&<^s 

III. The Divine Works of the Son, proving His deity, are either \3\\j 
ad intra, as the active procession of the Holy Ghost, and the send- V ^^ 
ing of the same (elsew r here discussed); or ad extra, since in the 

\sScripture divine works dd extra are ascribed to Christ, the Son ofs 
i s- God. From them His true deity is effectually proved. Moreover^ 
| there is ascribed to Him: (1) The creation of fee world, Gen. 1 : 2 ; 
33: 6; 102: 25; Prov. 8: 30TJolmTr3; Col. 1: 16; Heb. 1: 10.! 

2) The preservation and governing of all thiugs, John 5: 
Cor. 8: 6; Heb. 1: 3. 


(3) The working of miracles, s. 72: 18. 
The redemption of the human race, Hos. 13: 14; Zach. 9: 11. 
(5) ^hejpreservation and protection of the Church, Matt. 16: 18. 
The raising of the dead. Job 19: 25; John 6: 39, 40; 11: 25. 
(7) Salvation, Matt. 1:21. 

IV. The final argument for the deity of Christ is derived from 
His divine worship and honor. These are ascribed to Him (1) in 
general^ John 5: 23; (2) specifically, Is.~45: 23; Phil. 2: 10; John 
14: 1; Matt. 28: 19." * 

(3) (I, 340): " The Deity of the Holy Ghost is proved; 
I. From His divine names. For He is distinctly called Jehovah, \ 

2 Sam. 23: 2, {"MIT (TH the Spirit of the Lord spake by me, cf.- v. 

, ^7t T 1 - A mi * * ^ ** 



2, and Acts 1: 16; Is. 1: 21; Ez. 1:3, etc., with Zech. 7: 12; Luke 
1: 70; with 1 Pet. 1: 11; 2 Pet. 1: 21; Is. 6: 8, 10, with Acts 28: 
25, sq., etc., etc., &<$?, Acts 5: 3, 4; 1 John 5: 7, 9, etc., etc., >oc, 
2 Cor. 3: 17; 1 Cor. 12: 4, 5. 

II. From essential divine attributes ascribed to Him; namely, 
Eternity. Hj?b. 9: 14. Omnipotence, Is. 11: 2. Luke 11: 20; 1 Cor. 
12: 11. Omniscience, 1 Cor. 2: 10-12. Goodness and mercy, Neh. 
9: 20; Ps. 103: 11. Omnipresence, Ps. 139: 7. 

III. From His divine works, such as the creation of the universe, 
Gen. 1: 2; Job. 26: 13; Ps. 33: 6. Preservation, Job 33: 4. The 
working of miracles, Acts 10: 38. Add to these, works of grace 
and justice, of which Scripture speaks frequently. 

IV. From divine worship, such as (o) Adoration, Is. 6: 3; Acts ^ 
28: 25 and 26. (6) Invocation, 2 Cor. 13: 13; Rev. 1:4. (c) Faith ^ 



in the Holy Ghost, Matt. 28: 19. 





^MHE doctrine of the Divine works follows next in order to ? 
-- that of the existence, essence, and attributes of the triune V 
God. The first outward work of God (opus ad extra) is the\3 
creation of the world. [1] Concerning this creation the Holy v 
Scriptures teach us : ^ 

(1) That it is a work of God, which He accomplished with- v 
out the co-operation or assistance of any creature, [2J of His v ^ 
own free will, [3] and solely by means of His omnipotent J 
creative Word ; [4] a work of the one true God, and, therefore, s^ 
of the Triune God. [5] ^ 

(2) As God is, in the true sense of the word, Creator of thel 
world, this fact excludes every conception of a material exist 
ing from eternity out of which God only made, prepared, or V 
fashioned the world ; on the contrary, the material itself, of 
which the world consists, was created by God. This is ex-V 
pressed in the proposition, that the world was created from noth 
ing, which is intended to mean that there was nothing in 



/ / 

existence which God made use of in forming the world, but 
that everything that exists was first called into being by Him. 
(2 Mace. 7: 28 ; Rom. 4: 17 ; Ileb. 11:3; Is. 41: 24 ; Prpv. 8: 

22.) [6] 

y (3) As a specific beginning of creation is taught in the first 

chapter of Genesis, this at once excludes the conception of a 
| world existing from eternity. [7] 

(4) The world, if we mean by this term its entire construc- 
^5^ tion and arrangement as existing at the end of the six days 

of creation, came into being, according to the narrative in 
Genesis, not at once, but gradually (" during a period of six 
days God made all things which He created and made, observ 
ing an admirable orderj^). The manner of their production 
~(ordo crcationis) is described in the first chapter of Genesis, and ^ 
from this account we can distinguish : (a) The creation of 
matter ; (6) The separation of the different kinds of materials 
created from nothing ; (c) The arrangement of the rude masses 

K and their construction into the form in which they appeared 

\? at the end of the days of creation. [8] We can thus also dis 
tinguish between immediate and mediate creation ; the former 

. | being the creation from nothing, and the latter the arrange- 

^5 ment of the previously created materials. [9] 

(5) The first and highest aim of creation is the glory of God, 
. p for God wishes to be recognized and revered as the great God 
J that He is. (Ps. 19: 1 ; Prpv. 16: 4.) But, among all the 

creatures that have been called into being, man holds the high- 
|"^ est place, and for his sake everything else in the world has 
4 been created ; therefore, as the intermediate aim of creation, we ^ 
w are to regard theiise and benefit of man. (Geji. 1: 28.) [10] F 

(6) If the world is thus entirely the creature of God, it fol 
lows, finally, as is indeed expressly stated, Gen. 1: 31, that 
everything in the world was very good, and that, therefore, 
everything evil that is now in it must be regarded as having 
^ entered subsequently. [11] 

^j This is all comprehended in the definition : " Creation is an 
^^ act of God, who is one and alone, and an undivided work of 
the three persons of the Godhead, by which the Father, 
through the co-eternal Son, in the co-eternal Holy Spirit, of lirs 
_own free will, in six distinct days, formed all things, visible 


ami invisible, not out of some materials co-existing with Him- 
self from eternity, but from nothing, for the glory of His own 
name and the benefit of man ; and all things that God made 
are very good." (Gun. IV, 51.) [12] 

[1] The distinction between works ad intra and ad extra, which 
we discussed in connection with the doctrine of the Trinity, is not 
introduced by some of the Dogmaticians until they treat of the 
present topic. 

QUEN. (I, 415) divides divine actions ad extra into: "actions of ^ > 
power, as the creation and preservation of the world;" "actions of 
mercy, as the redemption, calling, regeneration, conversion, and 
salvation of the human race;" and "actions of justice, as the res 
urrection of the dead, the final judgment, and the damnation of 
devils and the wicked." 

Concerning the connection of the doctrine of the creation with 
that of the Trinity, CHMN. (Loc. Th., I, 112): Thus far, in the 
article of the Trinity, God has been described as He is in His secret 
nature, and mention has, indeed, been also made of the works of 
God, but, especially, of those which divinity works within itself, 
apart from every creature. But God, who has made darkness His 
hiding-place, and who dwells in inaccessible light, coming forth 
from His secret abode, lias manifested Himself, also, in works ad 
extra, . . . and, because the first manifestation ad extra was made 
in the work of creation, the article concerning the creation immedi- / 
ately follows." $ a 

[2] CHMN. (Loc. Th., I, 115): Creation is an action of the one * J 
God. This is said, because of those w r ho have proposed a number v 4 V 
of sources. It is, likewise, an action of God alone, which neither \ ^ 
ought to be, nor can be, ascribed to any creature (Md. 2: 10; J ^ 
Job 31: 15; 1 Cor. 8: 6; Is. 45: 6, 7; Job 9: 8.)" This statement, t >. 
at the same time, excludes the opinion of those " who add to God, ^ ^ 
in the work of creation, the co-operation of nature, in accordance ^ 
with what occurs in things already framed and set in order" ^J 
(CHMN. (I, 116) ), as well as the view of those, also, "who have *\ ^ 
divided the work of creation between God and the angels" (Gun. 
IV, 7). 

CALOV. (Ill, 897): In the primeval creation there was no in 
strumental cause or means, because God created ail things by the 

[3] QUEN. (I, 417): ( Neither was there any antecedent cause, 
except the purpose of (Jod alone, communicating Himself, not from 
the necessity of nature, but from the freedom of Ills will. 1 1 


CALOV. (Ill, 896): The impelling cause of creation is the im- 
mense goodness of Godj_ prompted by which, as He wished to 
communicate the highest good, He most freely communicated 

HOLL. (357): "Creation is a free, divine action, because God 
framed the universe, not induced thereto by necessity, as though 
He needed the service of creatures (since He is absolutely indepen- 
dent, atrap/ctCT-arof), but freely, as He was able to create or not to 
create and to frame sooner or later, in this or in another manner. 

[4] Hence creation is also described as "not successive^ but, with 
respect to every individual being created, instantaneous, for God framed 
everything, not by any movement or laborious exert t on^but when He said, 
Let there be light, immediately there was light." HOLL. (ib.). 

CALOV. (Ill, 900): "The action is not properly successive, but 
_mstantaneousj_ for the individuals, which (iod created, He created ^ 
in an instant, without movement or succession, although, if these ^ 
be regarded collectively, the creation was completed in six days K 
(w;i%*Fpa); not that He devoted those entire days to creation, but ^ 
that He created something in the moments of each day." X 

[5] CALOV. (Ill, 889): The efficient cause of creation is God, ^ 
one and alone." I 

~GRH. (IV~4): But that one true God is Father, Son, and Holy V 
Ghost; therefore, in Scripture, the work of creation is ascribed to 
the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Ghost, of the Father 
it is affirmed, I Cor. 8:6. Of the Son, John 1:3; Col. 1: 1C,. Of 
the Holy Ghost, Job. 26: 13; 33: 4; Ps. 104: 30. We conclude, j 
therefore, that creation is an undivided action of the one and true^J 
God alone, viz., of Father, Son, and Holy Ghost." If neverthe- V 
less creation, in a special sense, is called the work ad extra of God 
the Father (compare the section on the Trinity, note 29), this is 
done only by way of appropriation (same section, note 23). 

HOLL. (352): " In Holy Scripture and the Apostles Creed the 
^_ r A_ of creation is ascribed, in a peculiar manner, to God the I 
Cither: (//) Because of the order of working; for this reason, "thaU^ 
what the Father has of Himself to do and to Create, the Son of God 
and the Holy Ghost have of the Father. (6) Because, in the work I 
of creation, God the Father, by His most efficacious word_of corn^ * 
mand, manifested His own omnipotence, Gen. 1: 3. (>) CreatiorT -, 
is_the first divine work ad extrOj_ and therefore, by appropriation, is ^ 
affirmed of the First Person of the Godhead." ^ 

CHMN. (Loc. Th., I, 115): "We must not dispute too curiously rs 
concerning the distinction of persons in the work of creation, but W 
let us be content with the revelation, that all things were created 

- / 



by the eternal Father, through the Son, while the Holy Ghost 
hovered over them, Rom. 1 1 : 36. But these things are not to be con 
strued into an inequality of persons, as the Arians blasphemously as 
sert that the Son was God s instrument in creation, just as the 
workman uses an axe. For the prepositions (airo,6ia, h) do not 
divide the nature, but express the properties of a nature that is one 
and unconfused." So also HOLL. (353): "The three persons of 
the Godhead are not three associated causes, not three authors of 
creation, but one cause, one author ot creation, one Creator. Al 
though they are three distinct persons, yet they influence the work 
of creation with one power. If they were to influence it with a 
diverse power of working, they would be associated causes. 

[6] QUEN. (1,417): ( There was no material of creation out of 
which (materia ex qua), with respect to things created on the first 
day. For they were created on the first day, not from, any pre- 
qxisting material, whether eternal or created before, but ware made from 
purely negative rurthmg. When it u said that the works of the first 
day were created from nothing, the particle /rom does not desig 
nate the material out of which, but excludes it. For, by from nothing, 
there is nothing else denoted than the starting-point (terminus a quo); 
i. e., the nothing, from which all things are said to have been 
made, has respect not to the material, but only to the starting- 
point, and ought to be understood of the order of creation ; and the 
particle from can be correctly translated by after, so that the 
sense may be: After nothing, as the starting-point, something was 

CHEMN. (Loc. Th., I, 115): "That the material from which 
was not from eternity, but all things were created from nothing; 
i. e. , although things did not exist, they began to be when God spake. . . 
Moreover, it is said that they were created from nothing, noTas we 
commonly say, they contend about nothing, i. e. , about a trifling 
matter; but as when something is made, springs up, and comes into 
being, and there is not anything out of which it may be made. 

GRH. (IV, 7): "They occasion the madness of the Stoics, who 
devised two eternal principles, wt\- KOI vh), mind, or God, and matter, 
which they imagined was, during the ages of eternity, a confused 
chaos, and, at a certain time, was at length brought into form by 

In connection with this doctrine, the Dogmaticians call attention 
also to the difference in the meaning of the words create, beget, and 
make. See above, 19, note 31. From the distinction between 
create and beget, arises the proposition (HoLL. (356) ): "God did 
not create this visible world from His own essence, nor did He, as it 


were, diffuse this into parts, so that every creature may be said to 
be a particle of God. 

CALOV. (Ill, 899): "Creation does not consist in emanation 
from the essence of God, nor in generation, nor in motion, or natural 
change, . . . but in outward action, by which, by means of infinite 
power, things are produced from nothing." 

[7] QUEN. (I, 421): The world neither has been from eternity 
nor could it have been created from eternity. Proof (ibid. 422) : 
"(a) From the history of creation; (6) from the end and destruc 
tion of the world; (c) from the eternity peculiar to God alone; (IT) 
from the manner of its production, viz. : because all things were 
created from nothing, it follows that the material from which 
(mater i a ex qua-) was not from eternity." While it is thus asserted 
that the world could not have been created from eternity, we still 
dare not express ourselves in such a manner as though the world 
had been created at a particular time, since we cannot conceive of 
a time as having existed before the world. 

Concerning this point, the Dogmaticians usually express them 
selves as follows: HFRFFR. (67): "Moses (Gen. 1) replies, saying: 
That this mechanism of the world was not always, or from eternity; 
but that, in its coming forth, it depended upon a certain beginning 
of time; so that, since, in the infinite ages of past eternity, there 
was no world, God caused the world to come forth in that definite 
beginning of time. CALOV. ( III, 901 ) : " The creation of things did 
not occur from eternity, but in that beginning in which all time began 
to flow. Hence, creation began, not properly in time, but in the 
first instant and beginning of time. This is called the beginning of 
the way of the Lord, Prpv. 8: 22, before which, as there was no 
way, no outward action, no work, so also there was no time, no 
period, no age; for as the ages began to be framed by the Word, 
Heb. 11: 3, so also the creation of all ages began, 1: 2." 

The question^" Why God did not create the world sooner^ and 
ull;lt " (1 <li l whilst alone and unemployed j n that eternity/ is 
repulsed as "a question of madmen curiously inquiring into such 
things as have no profit" (HFRFFR. (69.)) 

[8] HFRFFR. (72): " From Gen. 1:1, sq., it appears that, in the 
creation of the world, there was a three-fold operation of the Crea 
tor: (1) First, indeed, He created; i. <?., although there was no 
matter before, He produced from nothing that crude and confused 
corporeal mass which Moses has designated by the names, heaven, 
earth, and water; (2) Then, during the firat three days, He divided 
these three bodies; (3) At length, during the second period of three_ 
days, He completed everything with its garniture." 

v*i*>t * V-^^eY^e^ 

QUEN. (I, 417): "The action of creation comprises three steps 
(1) The production, on the first day, of the crude material, which 
was the germinal source, as it were, of the entire universe; (2) The 
distinction and disposition of simple creatures during the first three 
d:ivs_: tor, on the first day, He separated light from darkness; on 
the second, by interposing the firmament, the waters beneath from 
those above; and, on the third, the earth from the waters; (3) The 
furnishing and completion of the world, which was brought to per- 
fection in the second period of three days; for, on the fourth day, 
He furnished the heavens with luminaries; on the fifth, the water 
with fishes, and the atmosphere with winged creatures; and, finally, 
on the sixth, the earth with animals, and, at last, with the chief of 
all animate beings, viz., with man." 

The later Dogmaticians usually treat of man, as the last of created 
beings, in a separate section, which they place before that of Provi 
dence. But we think we can appropriately here insert the essential 
features of the topic in the following propositions: 

(a) As to his position in the world, the remark of QUEN. (I, 
511) : "God, to give, as it were, the last touch to the work of crea 
tion, framed the most noble of creatures, for whose sake he had 
produced all the rest, viz. , man. 

(6) Definition, HOLL. (406): "Man is an animal, consisting of a 
rational soul and an organic body, framed by God, and endowed at 
the first creation with God s own image, in order that he .might 
sincerely worship tin- Creator, live a godly life, and attain eternal 

(c) The first man was Adam. QUEX. (I, 543): "Adam, framed 
by God on the sixth day of the first hexahemeron, is the first of all 
men, and the parent of the entire human race, throughout the whole 
globe, 1 Cor. 15: 45, 47; Gen. 2: 5. (The antithesis of Is. Peyrere, 
the founder of the Pre-adamites (J655), who says that: The Gen 
tiles are diverse from the Jews m race and origin; the Jews were 
formed by God in Adam, the Gentiles were created before, on the 
same day as other animate beings. The origin of the latter is de 
scribed in Gen. 1, that of the former in Gen. 2 ... The Gentiles 
are many ages before the Jewish nation, and, by race and nature, 
diverse from the same, and survivors of the Noachian flood of the 
Jews. Likewise, that the epoch of the creation of the world should 
not be dated .from that beginning which is commonly imagined in 
Adam, but must be sought for still further back, and from ages 
very remote in the past. )" BR. (239): "^loreover, in the begin 
ning, God framed only one individual, namely a male; woman He after_- 
wards produced from the rib of her sleeping husband. Gen. 2: 22." 

3 :/O 




(d) Of the mode of production, QUEN. (I, 512): " It consists in 
this, that God made man (a) with singular deliberation, taken con 
cerning this work, Gen. 1: 26; (/3) immediately, with His own 
hands, so to say; (y) ornately and elegantly; (<j) successively (Gen. 
2: 7, 21: 22), first (with respect to Adam) forming the body, and 
then breathing into it a soul. 

(e) Of the internal, constitutive principles of man. QUEN. (I, 
513) : They are the material and the physical form. The material 
is an animate organic body, before the Fall impassible, and not 
mortal. Gen. 1: 26; Wis. 2: 23. The physical form is the soul, 
before the Fall illumined with great light of concreated wisdom and 
knowledge, Col. 3: 10. Therefore, it is pure, and entirely desti 
tute of any sinful stain, Ep_h. 4: 24." The spirit is thus not 
enumerated as the third essential part of man. In reference to the 
passages cited as favoring that view, it isTemarked by QUEN. (I, 

5): " (1) In such passages Holy Scripture does not understand 
spirit, a spirit differing substantially from the human soul, but 
a superior part of the soul. (2) It distinguishes between, on the 
one hand, spirit taken for an essential part of man, which thus used 
is the same as soul, and is not distinguished from it; and, on the 
other, a* employed for spiritual gifts and those of sanctification, which 
are conferred by the Holy Ghost upon believers, or for the grace 
of the Holy Ghost and His operation, viz. , the qualities and gifts 
of the Holy Ghost in regenerate man. [Gun. XVII, 80. That 
there are but two parts of man, is proved by (1) Man s creation, 
( !i- -: ~- (-) Hi- redemption. For Christ s redemption had to 
do with man in his entire being, consisting only of soul and body, 
tjal. 3: 13; 4:5; Luke 19: 10. (3) His renewal and sanctifica- 
tion._ (4) The Incarnation of the Son_; for He assumed soul" and 
body. (5) The death of man^ Ecci 12: 7; Acts 7: 59. (6) The 
resurrection of the deac^ 1 Kings 17: 21. Opponents of our view 
urge passages of Scripture in which the spirit is distinguished 
Jrom the soul, Luke 1: 46; 1 Thess. 5: 23; Heb. 4: 12. We reply 
that the term spirit is sometimes put exegetically for the soul itself, 
since the soul is a spirit, Gen. 2:7; 46: 27. Some understand by 
ypirit^ 1 Thess. 5: 23, the mind or intellect, by soul, the will and 

(/) The question, "Whether human souls are created daily by 
God, or are^itcd {l , ,-/,-, ///,-,/,/." is answered thus by QrKX. 
:( The soul of the first man was immediately created by 
God; but the soul of Eve was produced by propagation, and thev 
souls of the rest of men are created, not daily, nor begotten of 
their parents as the body or souls of brutes, but, by virtue of the 



f \H 

divine blessing } are propagated, per traducem, by their parents. 
(I, 520, sq. ) adduces the proof: " ( 1 ) from the primeval blessing 
of God; Gen. 1: 28, cf. 8: 17; 9: 1. (2) From God s rest and 
cessation on the seventh day from all workj Gen. 2: 2. (3) From 
the production of the soul of Eve, Gen. 2: 21, 22. (4) From the 
description of generation, Gen. 5: 3. Just as after the Fall Adam 
begat a son in his own likeness, after his image, not only with re 
spect to body, but also with respect to soul, so also the rest of 
men. (5) From Gen. 46: 26. (6) From the following absurdi- 
ties. (a) if it be affirmed that souls are created immediately In; 
God, either original sin would be altogether denied or God could 
not be vindicated from injustice^ both of which are absurd; (6) it 
follows that man does not beget an entire man, or an entire com 
posite being, but only that part of it which doea not give form * to 
man; that He does not beget man, for man without form, i. e., 
soul, is not man. . . . (7) From Pg. 51; 7." Cf. also the follow 
ing observations of QUEN. (I, 519): " (1) We distinguish between 
the simultaneous creation of all souls, at the origin of the world, and 
the daily creation which occurs now, as often as men are begotten. 
(2) As human reason, not enlightened by Holy Scripture, knows 
little that is certain concerning the departure of the human soul 
from the body, and its condition after its departure, so also it can 
define nothing certain concerning the origin of the human soul in 
or with the body. (3) We distinguish between traduction, or the 
propagation itself of the soul, and the mode of traduction or propa 
gation. That the soul is propagated by parents procreating chil 
dren, and that souls are not immediately created or infused by 
God, is sufficiently manifest from the Holy Scriptures; but the 
mode has not been defined, and, therefore, we refrain from its 
determination and definition.-" GRH. IV. 278: " 1. Since the 
image of God, which was the righteousness, holiness and perfection 
of the concreated human soul, was propagated by generation, the 
soul itself must be thus propagated. 2. Original sin. ... 3. The 
force of the words. Gen. 1 : 28. That this was not destroyed by 
the Fall is proved by Gen. 5: 3. Adam begat a son, etc., i. e., 
flesh of flesh, John 3: 6, by which term not only the body is 
meant, Gal. 5: 20. The corrupt image of Adam, therefore, is to 
be sought not in the .body alone of his sons, but in the entire man. 
... 5. God did not create a soul for Eve, but transferred it from 

* [The word "form" in this connection is used in the scholastic sense of the 
term, viz.: "Form is the essence of the thing, from which result not only its 
figure and shape, but all its -other qualities." (Fleming s Vocabulary.) See 
also Glossary at the end of this volume.] 


Adam to Eve, and thus Eve derived her soul from Adam. For as 
the entire soul is in the entire body, and is entire in every part 
thereof, the rib of which Eve was formed was animated, and 
therefore she received a soul, not by inspiration or new creation, 
but by propagation from Adam. Eve s posterity, as animated, are 
begotten of animated parents," etc. . . . The explaj^tion_of_the 
mode of propagation is most difficult. 1. Some say that the souls 
of children are enkindled from those of parents as a torch from a 
torch, flame from flame. 2. Some, that the soul oT~tEe clnldls 
propagated from that of the parent, not separately, but that the 
whole is begotten of the whole; the seed being animated, but n<>t 
that of either parent separately, but only in the union ordained of 
God for this purpose. 3. Some, that besides its form, prepared 
for an organic body, it has a divinely implanted force whereby it 
can produce a soul. 4. Some, that the soul of the mother can 
produce the soul ot her offspring by growth, in the same way in 
which she produces new matter for nourisTiment. 5. Others at 
tempt to reduce the contrary opinions of creation and propagation 
to harmony in this way: jliere is a two-fold production; one with 
respect to the power of nature, called generation ; another, with 
respect to the absolute power of God, called creation. Creation, 
thus taken, is divided into that which proceeds from nothing, and 
is creation, properly so-called, and that which proceeds from a 
substance, yet neither necessarily nor with natural power, but in 
obedience to command. This presupposed, they maintain that 
God creates a new soul not of the souls of the parents, which, 
since it thus derives its material from Adam, participates in his 
guilt. . . . We leave the mode to be investigated by philosophers; 
but, meanwhile, the propagation itself must not be denied, because 
the mode of the propagation is not manifest. 

Of the body, HOLL. says further (411):~"(a) The body is a true 
part of man, without which he is not a true and entire man." 
(412): " (6) The human soul has not been cast by God into the 
body as into a foul prison, by which it is hindered from being able 
to elevate itself and fly upward to the knowledge, love, and worship 
of God." (The antithesis of the Mystics.) Of the soul, HOLL, 
(409): The soul is said to have been breathed into man by God^but_ 
not from God. For God did not, from His own substance, breathe into 
man a soul." (417): "The human soul neither emanated from 
the divine essence, nor by spiritual regeneration and mystic union 
with the triune God does it return or flow back to the divine essence. 
Hence, BR. (237): "God created man, producing his body from 
the earth, but his soul from nothing, and joining it to the body." 


[9] QUEX. (I, 417): ".AH things were created from nothing, 
nevertheless some immediately, viz., the works of the first day. and 
others mediately, viz., by means of the material which God had be 
fore created from absolutely negative nothing, viz. , the works of 
the succeeding five days." (Ibid. 418): "The former is of the 
highest order, and is creation, primarily or properly so-called, 
through which God, without the intervention of another, acted 
immediately upon nothing, by calling forth from it that which has 
a real and positive essence; but the latter is creation of the second 
order, secondarily and less principally, yet properly so-called, by 
which God produced something from a material pre-existing, but 
crude and altogether confused." 

[10] QUEN. (1,418): "The ultimate end of creation is the glory oj_ 
God. For in and through creation God manifested (a) the glory 
of His goodness by sharing His goodness with creatures; (/>) the 
glory of His power, by creating all things from nothing; by His 
will and Word alone; (c) the glory of wisdom, which shines forth 
from the multitude, variety, order, and harmony of things created, 
Ps. 19: 1." 

GKH. (IV, 4): "In order that God, who is invisible by nature, 
might be known also from things visible, a work was wrought by 
Him, to manifest the workman by its visibility." 

QUEX. (1,418): , The intermediate end of creation is the advantage 
of men. For God made all things for the sake of man, but man 
He made for His own sake, Ps. 115: 16." 

[11] CHEMN. (Loch. Th., I, 116): "To the definition of creation 
this also belongs: that all things which God made are very good, 
Gen. 1: 31; Wis. 1: 13, 14." 

QUEN. (I, 418): "From this stutement we exclude the defects 
of nature, which began only after man s fall." 

CALOV. (Ill, 902): " Well-pleasing to God are the consequences 
of creation, the rest from the work of creation, as well as the power 
and dominion exercised over creatures. 

[12] QUEN. (I, 415): "Creation is an external action of the 
triune God, whereby, to the praise of His name and the advant 
age of men, in the space of six days, by the command alone of His 
most free will, He omnipotently and wisely produced from nothing 
all things visible and invisible. 

1$K. (24S): " Creation is defined as an action ml c.rtr<i of the 
triune God, whereby God. impelled by His goodness, produced 
this world and all things that are therein, first, indeed, as simple 
bodies, from no pre-existing material; then out of simple bodies, as 
a crude and confused material, He produced mixed bodies; nay, 

I^-C^Y &T?-*-P/. 


even independently of all material, He produced immaterial sub- 
stances,~so as, by the direction alone of His will, to frame with 
~power each of these, according to the idea oT His mind, and inlEe 
space of six days to complete the entire work, to the glory of His 
wisdom, power, and goodness, and to the advantage of men." 


21. The Doctrine taught by both Reason and Revelation. 

OD is not a workman who, when he has completed his 
" work, leaves it to itself and goes his way " [Augustine] ; 
but, having created the world, He sustains it and continually 
cares for it. [1] Therefore the Holy Scriptures never speak 
of the creation without at the same time alluding to the super 
intending care that is exercised over the world ; and in this 
very fact the Christian finds the highest consolation, that he 
is permitted to regard God as continually present in the world, 
caring for the greatest just as for the least, and hindered by 
nothing in the exercise of His care. This consolation we 
may, indeed, in part derive from the contemplation of the 
world by the light of Nature, and from observing the course 
of its affairs ; but it is only the certaintyjvhicj^evjiation 
communicates that establishes us immovably in this confi 
dence. [2]" 

The Providence of God [3] specially manifests itself: I,jn 
His preserving what has been created in the world ; II, i 

cooperating with all that occurs ; and III, in His leading and 
directing everything in the workL The doctrine of Provi- 
dence is accordingly "divldedlnto the doctrines of Preservation, 
Concurrence, and Government [4] (Conservatio, concursus, guber- 

I. " Preservation is the act of Divine Providence whereby God 
sustains all things created by Him, so that they continue in bein 
with the properties implanted in their nature and the powers re- 


re i red in creation" (HoLL., 441). The world would fall back 
again into nothing if God did not continually uphold, not only 
the various species of creatures and the individuals in then^, 
but also the existing order of arrangement and cooperation 
which lie lias assigned the whole; [5] for created things have 
no power of subsistence in themselves, but have it only so long 
as God imparts it to them. [6] We distinguish, therefore, be 
tween creation and preservation only in our conception ; in God 
we must regard one as implying the other : therefore, preserm- 
tion is also designated as continued creation. [7] 

II. Concurrence. [8] The doctrine of Divine Providence im 
plies far more than merely that God creates and upholds the 
world. If this were all, then we \vould have to refer all the 
changes and transactions that occur in the world entirely to 
creatures, and God would have no further share in all this 
than merely to give to His creatures the ability thus to act. 
But God is to be regarded as, in a far higher sense than this, 
present in the world. The Holy Scriptures teach us that He 
is an active participant in all that transpires in the wprldj 
that nothing that occurs could take place without Him and 
His active co-operation ; that, therefore, every single effect, 
change, or transaction in the world comes to pass only through 
the influence of God. In this, God is not, indeed, as in crea- 
tion and preservation, the sole cause of that which happens ; 
for God has given to living creatures a will that is to be em- 
ployed in actions, and has imparted even to inanimate things 
a power which we are to regard as the efficient cause of 
changes. God s Providence can, therefore, by no means be so 
regarded, as if He alone were the author of all that is done ; 
for, in that case, this will, which we must assume in the case 
of living creatures, would not have justice done to it, and the 
power that belongs to inanimate things would not be called 
into exercise : yet God is nevertheless the co-operative cause 
of all that occurs. In all transactions, therefore, that proceed 
from a creature, the creature itself is just as much a cause as 
God is ; He, on the other hand, is always to be regarded as 
co-operating : every change, effect, or transaction that occurs 
is, accordingly, to be referred at the same time to both, to the 
creature and to God. [9] This is expressed in the doctrine 


of the concurrence. Concurrence, or the co-operation of God, is 
the act of Divine Providence whereby God, by a general and ira-_ 
mediate influence, proportioned to the need and capacity of every 
creature, graciously takes part with second causes in their actions 
and effects. (HoLL. 442.) [10.] While it is certain that God Fs 
to be regarded as co-operating in everything that occurs, [11] 
it is no less certain that the manner of His co-operation differs 
very greatly, varying with the nature of the co-operating causes 
(the causx secundse) and with the necessities of the case. God 
co-operates, for instance, in one way when the action is to pro 
ceed from inanimate nature, and in a very different way when 
the second cause, with which He co-operates, is one endowed 
with freedom. [12] Also, God has one way of co-operating 
with good deeds and another with those that are evil. [13] The 
general co-operation of God is, moreover, always to be regarded 
as immediate, [14] but at the same time also as of such a kind 
that the effect is not already predetermined (not a previous but 
a simultaneous concurrence, not predeterminating but mildly 
disposing), since in that case the effectual participation of the 
second cause would be excluded and its liberty infringed. [15] 
III. " Government is the act of Divine Providence by which 
God most excellently orders, regulates, and directs the affairs and 
actions of creatures according to His own wisdom, justice, and good- 
ncssK,for the glory of His name and the welfare of men."_ (CAL., 
Ill, 1194.) [16] God actively participates in actions for the 
express purpose of directing the whole world according to His 
own purposes. As, therefore, preservation has reference to the 
existence and continuance of created things, government lias 
reference to the actions that proceed from these creatures. God 
inclines and leads them according to His will so as to accom 
plish His designs : and this government of God extends over 
the whole as well as over each single part, over the great as 
well as over the small._[17] 

Inasmuch as God, however, allows men in their freedom to 
have their own way, as we have already seen under the doc 
trine of concurrence, this marks distinctly the character of His 
government ; for He governs in such a manner that this lib 
erty is not restricted. Hence, much is done that would not 
be done if so wide arrange were not allowed to human liberty ; 


and, according to the different conduct of men, whom God 
will not hinder in the exercise of their liberty, God is detejj 
mined in employing different methods of directing the world 
tor the accomplishment <>f His designs. This different method 
is described in the expressions, permission, hinderance, direction, 
and determination. 

(1) Much is done that cannot at all be said to meet the special 
approbation of God ; but God permits it, suffers it to occur, be- 
cause He does not choose to enforce His own preference by doing 
violence to or prohibiting human liberty, and therefore seeks 
to accomplish His aims in some other way (permission). [18] 

(2) Thus God often is content with merely hindering the 
Accomplishment of what would be contrary to His purposes 
(hinderance). [19] 

(3) He knows, too, how to sway the freely performed actiojis 
of men, after they have been permitted by Him to occur (whether 
they be good or evil), in such a way that they must be subservient 
to and in accordance with His own purposes (direction). [20] 

(4) As, finally, He is Himself the source from which pro 
ceeds all power and ability to act, so He knows also how to attain 
His own ends by withholding the necessary power, or by holcp 
ing this within certain limits which it dare not transcend, when 
men are about to act contrary to His will (determination). [21] 

Of Providence in general, as comprehending preservation, 
concurrence, and government, we have yet to remark : 

(1) That it affects everything, but not uniformly ; on the 
other hand, everything is affected by it just in proportion to 
the relative importance of its position in the world. And, as 
man occupies the highest place in the world, Providence has 
special reference to him ; most specifically, however, it is exer 
cised with reference to the godly, as God s chief purpose in re 
gard to man is his salvation. [22] 

(2) The providence of God ordinarily employs second causes, 
and thus accomplishes its designs ; but God is by no means 
restricted to the use of these second causes, for He often exer 
cises His providence without regard to them, and operates 
thus contrary to what we call the course of nature, and hence 
arises the difference between ordinary and extraordinary provi 
dence. [23] 

*-S e^r-e^*s t**+~*-a 
/ S 7 




^ (3) Finally, divine providence is exercised differently \vith_ 

reference to that which is evil and that which is good. [24] 

\ " Providence is the external action of the entire Trinity, [25] 

whereby (a) God most efficaciously upholds the things created, both as 
an entirety and singly, both in species and in individuals ; (b) con- 

\ curs in their actions and results ; and (c} freely and wisely governs all 

things to its own glory and the welfare and safety of the irnircrxe, 
and especially of the godly." 

[1] GRH. (IV, 52): " God, the Creator of all, did not desert the 
work which He framed; but, by His omnipotence, up to the pres 

ent time preserves it; and, by His wisdom, rules and controls all 
things in it." 

[2] GRH. (IV, 52): " Scripture joins both, viz., that the faithful 
heart must believe that God is both Creator and Provider, Job 
12: 9, 10; Acts 17: 24, 25, 28; Ps. 121: 2. The perverse imagina 
tion, that God has left creatures to only their own governing, covers 
human minds with great darkness, and produces horrible doubts. 
The very object which is preserved and governed as Nature, is a 
witness to Divine Providence. If you be a disciple of Nature, you 
will find that provision is made for the most trifling and insignifi 
cant objects, as well as for the most noble; that upon all are con 
ferred those things which are necessary for attaining their end; that 
all continue steadfastly in a fixed and wonderful order; that those 
things which act without sense or thought nevertheless attain their 
end; that objects conflicting with each other are so governed that, 
by breaking the strength of one another, they profit the world by 
their opposition. But the knowledge of Divine Providence, sought from 
the Book of Nature, is weak and imperfect, not from the fault of Nature 
itself, but from that of our mind; but more certain and perfect is the 
knowledge of Divine Providence which is sought -from Scripture. 

[The arguments from Nature are thus enumerated by HUTT. 
(218): "l._ The order and perpetual effect of Nature, as the fixed and 
perpetual movement of heavenly bodies, the fertility of the earth, 
the constant flow of streams, the perpetuation of distinct species of 
animals and plants. _ . Tin rond it/on of the inteUiyeiit human mind. 
For what is irrational can never be the cause of an intelligent na 
ture. 3. The distinction between what is honorable and dishonorable, 
which could not originate from accident or from matter. 4. 

kiioirb <](/<. which even in its obscurity, since the Fall, convinces man 
that there is a Divinity who controls and governs all things. 5. 
Terrors of conscienct in the minds <>t the guilty on account of crimes 


/( &; O/ - 

they have committed, even when there are no human courts for 
them to fear. (>. TJtc wonderful preservation of civil society and espec 
ially the Church, amidst the rage of the world and the devil. 7. 
The series of efficient causes proceeding not ad infinitum^ but to a First 
Cause, upon which all depend. For if the progress were infinite, 
there would be no order of causes, and they would not necessarily 
cohere. 8. The most useful ends of all things. 9. The prophecy of 
future events. The force of all these arguments is to prove not so 
much that there is a God, as that, by His command, the world was 
established in the beginning, and that even now all its parts are 
ever administered by Him."] 

[3] QUEN. (I, 527): " Providence is so named from providere, 
and denotes the act of foreseeing and cherishing anxious care con 
cerning objects pertaining to self." 

"The term Providence (^povota} does not occur in the canonical 
books in the -sense in which it is here employed, but only in Wis. | 
14: 3. But synonymous with it are the expressions: Seeing, G_en. I 
22: 8; 1 Sam. 16: 1; Ez. 20: 6; ordination, Ps. 119: 91; preserva_- * 
tion, Ps. 36: 7; <J"Mw?<n? i Wis. 12: 18; faaKvptpvycie^Wis. 14: 3; Trp6-a$if, J 
Acts 17: 26." 

Scriptural Proof. HOLL. (424): "All Scripture is nothing else y 
than a brilliant mirror, from which, in whatever direction you turn, ^ 
the ever watchful eye of providential direction clearly shines forth." 
Hence, in Ps. 121: 4, God is called the Keeper of Israel, (a) Pre- ^ 
serving Providence is proved from Ps. 36: 6; (6) Co-operating Provi- ^ 
dence from Acts 17: 27, 28; (c) Governing Providence from Jjer. 10: W 
23; Prpv. 20: 24. 

[4] Providence is divided into these three parts, so far as it is a ^ 
work of God ad extra. Before it becomes such, however, certain ^ 
acts must have taken place in God Himself, viz. , a foreknowledge 
of that upon which His providential care is to be exercised, and a 
purpose to exercise this care. If we take both of these into the 
account, Providence may be divided, HOLL. (424): "(a) into 
(foresight or foreknowledge): (6) npMecis (the purpose or 


decree of God) ; and (c) tioiiaioif (the actual preservation, co-Dpera- 
tion, or concurrence and governing, with respect to things created). 
BR. (303): Opinions vary, inasmuch aa some contend that, 
the name, Providence, there is meant not so much the immanent 
acts of the divine mind and will, as the outward act of preserving 
and governing. Some indeed teach that, by this name, an imma 
nent act is denoted, and they believe that it pertains formally to 
the intellect, and, by way of consequence, to the wiP ; others vice\ 
versa. Nevertheless, it is easily perceived that this entire contro- 




versy is not so much concerning the thing itself, as concerning the 
terms employed. For all concede that to Providence, regarded in 
its wide sense, there belongs both xiwyvuaig, or an intellectual act, by 
which God sees beforehand what will be beneficial to creatures; 
and -p6fcm(, or the act of the will, by which He wills to ordain and 
dispose the things which He foresees to be advantageous; as well 
.as fao iKriatg, or the preservation itself (concurrence), and the govern 
ment of creatures. Meanwhile, if we pay attention to the force of 
the words, Providence seems to denote not so much external acts 
of executive power, as God s care of His creatures, and, therefore, 
acts of His intellect and will, whence these outward acts proceed: 
but the order of internal acts is undoubtedly this, that the act of 
intellect precedes, and the act of the will, or the purpose to confer, 
according to the suggestion of the intellect, those things which are 
profitable to creatures, follows; although it does not follow Provi 
dence itself so as, together with the previous act of the intellect, to 
intrinsically constitute it. But if the usus loquendi be considered, it 
must be acknowledged that, to the acts of preservation (concur 
rence) and governing, which are the effects, signs, and marks of 
Providence, the name of Providence itself, according to an ordinary 
metonymy, is not unfrequently ascribed." 

HOLL. (421 and 422) : "The providence of God, with respect to 
-po-yvucis Kal Trpotteffis, is an internal act * cf the divine intellect and 
will; with respect to rfw/K^r, an external action Strictly speaking, 
the providence of God is a divine action ad extra; for it is occupied 
with creatures, and thus is directed to that which is outside of God. 
In this stricter sense, the actual providence of God is only the pre 
servation, co-operation with, and government of creatures ; but 
foreknowledge, and the decree concerning the preservation and 
governing of things, are presupposed as acts of the divine intellect 
directing, and of the will commanding. 

With reference to foreknowledge it is remarked: (a) That the 
expression to know beforehand only inaccurately describes GooVs 
knowledge of everything, since the knowledge of God is not medi 
ated by a succession of time and of thought, as ours is, but is 
rather intuitive, by virtue of which He sees everything, the pa^t, 
the present, and the future at once, as it were in a mirror^ GRH. 
(IV, 66): "In our knowledge there is a two-fold activity of 
thought. In the first place, only according to succession, since, 
when we understand anything in an act, we turn from it to under- 

*[" Action and act are not synonymous. Act does not necessarily imply an ex 
ternal result, action does. We may speak of repentance as an act; we could not 
call it an action." Fleming s Vocabulary of Philosophy. ] 


stand something else; secondly, there is another activity of thought, 
according to causality, since, by means of premises, we come to the 
knowledge of conclusions. Neither of these belongs to God: not 
the first, because He sees all things in one, i. e. , in Himself, just 
as we see many things at the same time in a mirror; nor the second, 
because this presupposes a first, and because such a process is from 
that which is known to that which is unknown, whereas God 
already sees the effects in Himself as a cause." QUEN. (I, 539): 
" Hp6yvuotc, or foreknowledge, is ascribed to God only anthropopath- 
ically, since it is properly the foreknowledge of future things; but 
to God there is nothing future, but all things are present, not in 
deed actually by way of existence, but objectively, and therefore 
He foresees nothing, but sees all things most absolutely in a per 
petual, abiding, and immutable now, so that in God there is rather 

irav-f 7roi/ /rt than Trpoyvcjais. 

(6) The question, "Whether foreknowledge bring necessity to 
things foreknown, or whether it be certain that things are fore 
known by God in such a manner, that now, by some necessity, 
they cannot occur otherwise?" HUTT. (Loc. Comm., 256) an 
swers thus: Neither harmonizes with the truth. For every object 
is foreseen or foreknown by God as it is in its own nature, and ac 
cording to its results, so that this .foreknowledge depends upon the event, 
but the event does not depend upon the foreknowledge. As Jerome 
infers : The foreknowledge of future things does not make that 
which God knew would take place immutable; for, because of 
God s knowledge of future things, it is not necessary for us to do 
that which He foreknew, but what we will do according to our own 
will He knows as future. Thus a solar or lunar eclipse does not 
occur because foreknown and predicted long before by mathemati 
cians, since it would have occurred from natural causes, even 
though no mathematician should have foreknown or predicted it; 
so, also, what God has foreknown or foreseen is not immutable, or 
of fatal necessity, for the reason that He has foreknown or foreseen 
it, but it is immutable because man s will, freely doing this or that, 
has not changed, since it it would change, this also God would 
foreknow." . . . Still further: " It is one thing when I say that 
with respect to divine foreknowledge, something is immutable or 
occurs necessarily; but another thing, when I say that a thing is 
immutable because of God s foreknowledge, or, what is the same, 
that foreknowledge brings necessity to things foreknown. The 
former assertion is orthodox, but the latter is not; inasmuch as the 
latter expression names a cause, on account of which the matter 
cannot be otherwise, but the former denotes only the truth and 



certainty of the divine foreknowledge, and means nothing else than 
that God, as omniscient, knows already from all eternity what 
issue everything would have. In this respect it is said correctly: 
Things foreknown occur in that manner in which they have been 
foreknown, and not causally with respect to foreknowledge, as 
though this caused things foreknown to occur in this manner and 
no other, but only conditionally, in so far as God knew matters in 
no other way than as they would occur from their own causes, and 
indeed freely. Therefore, when something occurs now in this 
manner, it is correctly said, with respect to divine foreknowledge, 
that it could not have occurred in another manner, according to 
the well-known rule: Everything that exists, exists necessarily, 
when it exists/ 

[HUTT. illustrates: " I see that Peter is limping. As I see it, it 
must be so, for my vision is not deceived; and since it is actually 
occurring, it cannot be otherwise, but must be. Nevertheless, my 
seeing Peter limp cannot be said to cause him to limp, for he is not 
impelled by my vision, and no necessity ot limping is imposed 
upon him, since he would limp even though not seen by me, and 
he would be able not to limp, if the natural cause were otherwise: 
but if this were otherwise, I would also see it. In the same way, 
we do nothing that God has not foreseen, and yet this foreknowledge 
of God is not the cause of our actions."] 

GRH. (IV, 69): "If you do not yet fully perceive the subject, 
thus regard it: Thejoreknowledge of God does not bring immuta- 
bility to objectfTa pr? m, but only a posteriori; i. e., when God 
knows th.-il a ihing i s , it is necessary for it t<> !>-. Nevertheless, in 
the meanwhile, a thing by its own nature, and with respect to its 
own cause, could be otherwise, and then God would have fore 
known it otherwise. Things either present, or past, or future, do 
not depend upon knowledge; but knowledge depends upon the 
thing and event which is foreknown as just such as it is, so that if 
it would not have been, that fact also would have been foreseen by 

Related thereto is the question: "Whether the divine foreknowl- 
<;dge rests upon :i previous decree?" \vhirh HOI.I.. (W2) answers 
thus: "The foreknowledge and decree of God concerning future 
things are eternal and simultaneous on the part of God; but, ac 
cording to our mode of conception, the foreknowledge of God pre 
cedes the divine decree. 

[5] HOLL. (441): "God preserves species and individuals. 
Species He preserves by keeping the essences of objects from de 
struction, and imparting to them constancy. Individuals He pre- 


serves, by substituting new individuals in the place of those that" 
perish, so that the essence of species may remain constant." 

CHMN. (Loc. Th., I, 125): "It is the office of Providence to> 
watch over and aid the order which it has given to nature, so that 
every substance has its becoming strength, motions, and actions. "" 
[6] GRH. (IV, 83): "Created things subsist not of themselves, 
and from their own strength, but God upholds all things by the 
word of His power, Heb. 1: 3; Col. 1: 17; Acts 17: 28." | 

HOLL. (441): Divine preservation is an act not merely nega- ^ 
\.tive or indirect, for it does not consist in the fact that God does not x 
; wish to destroy or annihilate the things that He has framed, hut , 
. 5 to leave to them their strength, as long as they can flourish and . 
endure from the energy given to them by creation; but it is a 
linxitire <iml direct act. hy which God, through a true and real in tin- v 

enters in a general way into the eflirient causes of the ohjects 
t are to be preserved, so that in their nature, properties, and 
strength, they continue and remain." 


i 4 > ence, 

I i ! *L 

[7] QUEN. (I, 531): "God preserves all things by the continu- ^ 
v ance of the action by which He first produced them. For the% 
jl * preservation of a thing is, properly speaking, nothing else than a 

\i continued production of it, nor do they differ except by a designati 
v| ^ derived from without." HOLL. (441): (Creation and preservation) 
"V >k"are distinguished by different connotatives. For creation con- 
I^R notes that the object had not existed before; preservation supposes 
\v^ that the object had existed before. Creation gives a beginning of 
^ >vbeing; preservation, a continuance of being. 

| [8] The Dogmaticians do not all assign this place to the doctrine P \J ^ 
of the divine concurrence; the earlier, as GRH. and CAL., andl^V 
among the later BAIER, following CAL., divide the subject of Provi 
dence into only preservation and governing, and discuss the doc 
trine of the concurrence only in a supplementary way. \J \| 
HOLL. (440): "Some theologians think that the acts, to the\^ \ 
exercising of which, with respect to creatures, Divine Providence^ 
l^ol 5^ is limited, are two, preservation and governing, w r hich latter is 
< ^ said to signify both the general concurrence with second causes,^ 
Ats 17: 25, 26; and the special direction of the action of created 
things." 1 Kings 18: 44; Judges 16: 28, 29; Gen. 17: 16, 17, 
"9; Dejit, 28: 23. 

^ jjf From the time of QUEN., it became customary to enumerate^ 
^ three acts of providence. _ Practically it matters little what division 
is adopted, yet the latter division has this in its favor, that the 
manner in which God exercises providence is at once included in 
the doctrine of providence. It is then declared: 1. That the 

world cannot exist without God s upholding activity. 2. That 
God is present in the world in such a manner, that nothing, either 
great or small, happens without His active co-operation. 3. That 
He is present in the world in such a manner, in order that He may 
direct everything in it according to His own purposes. 

[9] QUEN. (I, 531): "God not only gives and preserves to 
second causes the power to act, but immediately influences the 
action and effect of the creature, so that the same effect is produced 
not by God alone, nor by the creature alone, nor partly by God 
and partly by the creature, but at the game fame by God and the 
creature, as one and the same total efficiency, viz., by God as the 
universal and first cause, and by the creature as the particular and 
second cause." The action of God and the action of man are 
simultaneous actions. QUEN. (I, 545): "In reality, the influence 
of God is not one action, and the operation of the creature another; 
but the action is one and indivisible respecting both, and depend 
ent upon both, upon God as the universal cause, upon the creature 
as the particular cause. As an act of writing, the same in number, 
depends upon the hand and the pen, and one part does not depend 
upon the hand and the other upon the pen, but each part entirely 
upon the hand and entirely upon the pen; so God s concurrence 
is not prior to the creature s own action by the priority of causality, 
since it is, in fact, entirely the same action. Hence God, just as 
also the second cause, produces the entire effect, which comes to 
pass by an exterior action of God, inwardly included in the action 
of the creature, one and the same with it. 

As scriptural proof, the following passages are cited: Job 10: 8; 
38: 28; Is. 26: 12; Phil. 2: 13; especially A_cts 17: 28: "In Him 
we live, and move, and have our being." QUEN. (I, 532): " We 
have our being in God as the one preserving; in Him we move, 
i. e. , all our actions and movements we perform by His concur 
rence, so that without His concurrence we can neither raise a 
finger, nor produce even the least movement. 

If, thus, every change, effect, or act which comes to pass is 
ascribed at the same time both to God and to the creature, the 
Dogmaticians inquire whether we do not encroach upon the doc 
trine of Providence; or whether, if we maintain the integrity of 
this doctrine, we do not exclude the co-operation of the creature 
and all its free movements. HUTT. (Loc. Com., 228) thus states 
the objection: "If all things are subject to divine government, 
they either can occur otherwise than God decreed from eternity to 
govern them, or they cannot occur otherwise; if the former, Divine 
Providence will be deceived; but if the latter, Divine Providence 


will certainly bring necessity to things foreseen, and, in conse 
quence, all contingency will be removed. But both are absurd; 
therefore, the universal, and, indeed, effectual, Providence or 
government of all things will scarcely be able to stand firm." 
The very purpose of the term contingency is to designate the free 
movement of the creature. 

That, says HUTT. (256), is defined as contingent whicli. 
when it comes to pass, is neither impossible nor necessary, but 
has a cause which, from its own nature, could act otherwise, such 
as the human will ; or, as others . . . define it, that is contingent 
which, by its own nature, can either be or not be ? which can be 
constituted either in this or in another manner, or which can 
happen or not happen, and L before it happens, can be prevented 
from happening; when, indeed, it does happen, it has a cause 
which, by its own nature, could act otherwise, and whose contra- 
dictory would not be impossible/ As an example . . . the be 
trayal by Judas was a contingent event, for Judas could have 
abstained from that crime, and not have betrayed his Master; so- 
that when he actually betrayed Him, there was, nevertheless, in 
him a cause, which, by its own nature, could have acted other 
wise, i. e., it could have restrained him from that deed." 

The answer to the above objection he then introduces by means 
of two distinctions (228) : u The./ms< distinction is this: Everything 
mutable and immutable is described in two modes: in one mode, 
when anything by its own nature, perse, absolutely has been so- 
composed, that it either can or cannot TTe constituted otherwise; in 
another mode, when something is either mutable or immutable, 
not per se, but by way of accident not absolutely, but condition 
ally. As an example: God is immutably good and wise, per se 
and absolutely. Angels, likewise, are also immutably good and 
wise, but not per se or absolutely, but by way of accident; in so far 
as, without doubt, they have already been so confirmed in good as 
no longer to be able to fall. So, too, as an example of mutability: 
Adam was mutably good before the Fall, for if he had not been 
such, he would not have been able to fall; but because he could 
have remained good if he had wished, this mutability in him is 
very correctly stated to have existed not absolutely and per se, but 
only from the condition of his will. Since the Fall, all believers 
are in like manner mutably good, not absolutely and per se. For 
in the state of corruption it could not occur otherwise, because , 

their goodness is mutable. The second distinction is of that which JA/v 
is necessary, or, in other words, ojjiecessjty. For in our theology 
. . . there is a twofold necessity constituted, of which the one is- 


absolute_or_simple, i. e., necessity of consequence (consequent-is ), or 
constraint (coactionis ) , the opposite of which is undoubtedly simply 
impossible. The other is conditionate f ? . e. , necessity of the conse 
quent (consequentisi), or condition.* That is absolute by which ob 
jects are so constitutedthatjiothing whatever in them can be changed, 
as are those things whieh are predicated of the essence of God and 
His attributes. But_that is conditionate by which any object in 
deed has a cause, on account of which it cannot now be changed or 
be otherwise constituted, but by its nature, nevertheless, is mut- 
able^jand could be changed or be constituted altogether differently. 

Then HUTT. answers the first question, May Divine Providence 
be deceived^? as follows : These two distinctions being presup 
posed, to the latter member of the disjunctive, the categorical and 
affirmative answer is given, that those things which have been fore 
seen by God cannot be otherwise constituted, or, as is the same, 
they are not mutable, except relatively and with this condition, 
namely, that these things are constituted immutably, not absolutely 
or per se, or, in other words, by absolute necessity, but only by 
accident, or from the condition of the objects foreseen. For God 
foresaw how everything would be and would result, from its own 
causes, whether natural or voluntary, and in this respect the Provi 
dence of God cannot be deceived. But if from their nature they 
would have been otherwise. God would h aye foreseen this also, and 
thus His Providence would not have been deceived. In this re.- 
spect it is most correctly denied that things foreseen could be con 
stituted otherwise than as they have been foreseen." 

The second question, Does Providence, therefore, bring neces- 
sity to the things foreseen, and, as a consequence^is contingency 
removed ? HUTT. thus answers: "A reply is most correctly 
made by another distinction. But if, indeed, pure or absolute 
necessity, or necessitas consequents, be understood, it is absolutely 1 
denied that Providence brings necessity to things foreseen. For 
thus no place would be left any longer for natural causes, nor any 
liberty of the human will. Nevertheless, that both are subordinate 
to the_Providence of God, and can exist,together_with it, without 

*["The scholastic philosophers have denominated one species of necessity, 
necessitas consequently, and another, neceszitas consequentis. The former is an ideal 
or formal necessity, the inevitable dependence of one thought upon another by 
reason of our intelligent nature. The latter is a real or material necessity, the in 
evitable dependence of one thing upon another because of its own nature. The 
former is a logical necessity, common to all legitimate consequence, whatever be 
the material modality of its objects. The latter is an extra-logical necessity, . . . 
wholly dependent upon the modality of the consequent." (Sir William Hamil 
ton s Discussions, etc., p. 144.)] 


contradiction, we have clearly demonstrated in the question imme 
diately preceding. But if the other neceggit^be understood^ which_ 
is that of condition, or necessitas consequentix, we very freely concede 
that things foreseen by God s Providence arejiijiecessary depend 
ence; becauseTnainel U. God foresees these things not otherwise than as 
they would result from their causes, therefore they result also just as Gwl 
has foreseen them. Nor, on the other hand, does it conflict with that 
which by way of consequence is inferred; therefore all contingency is 
removed. For inasmuch as this necessity of consequence belongs to 
such things as are, by their own nature, mutable, and could be 
changed and be otherwise constituted, this necessity and contin 
gency can undoubtedly exist at the same time as subordinates, 
although in a different respect; viz., a necessity, in. so far as a thing 
has a cause, because of which it can no longer be changed or be 
otherwise constituted, but a contingency, in so far as the thing itself 
by its own nature so exists that it could be otherwise constituted. 
Thus, the betrayal of Judas, with respect to Divine Providence, is 
said to be necessary by necessity of consequence, because God un 
doubtedly foresaw from eternity that Judas, from intended malice 
and with fixed purpose, would betray Christ; but contingent, in so 
far as he was able to resist the wicked desires of his will and not to 
betray Christ. Nevertheless, if Judas would have resisted the 
temptation, God w r ould also have foreseen this from eternity, and 
thus (by his not betraying) the Providence of God could not have 
been deceived." The proposition, therefore, stands thus: " A 
contingency of human affairs and actions can exist most surely^ 
without impairing or diminishing the Providence of God, for the 
reason that this contingency is not opposed to Divine Providence, 
butjs subject or subordinate to it. For, as the Providence of God 
governs and determines things one and all, so also does it govern 
and determine contingent actions. For hence it comes to pass that 
God does not suffer the wicked to rush on whither they would 
otherwise tend according to their free will, but He fixes limits to 
the extent to which He will slacken the reins to their lust. Hence, 
also, God frequently, by the power exercised through His Provi 
dence, casts chains and restraints upon the wicked, in order that 
they may be forced to desist from their undertakings, and alto 
gether abandon the deeds which their unbridled lust would other 
wise perpetrate. Esau, the brother of Jacob, who had taken 
measures to slay his brother, etc., can be given as an example. 
But even when there is no such hindrance, and God permits those 
things to occur which the will of the wicked devises, yet there 
nevertheless shines forth even thence the singular skill of Divine 


Providence, which derives even thence the means to inflict de 
served punishments upon the wicked, and to subvert them, and 
knows how to change even their worst designs to the advantage and \ 
welfare of the godly. Of this, the history of Joseph and that of the - 
passion of Christ supply us with examples most worthy of note."* \ 

[10] QUEN. (I, 544): " The question in this place is not whether ^ 
God communicates and preserves to second causes the power to 
operate, for this mode of concurrence ascribes to God no more than 
that He preserves the existence of objects and their power to act, 
which He gave them in the beginning; but the question here is, 
whether God immediately influences according to the requirement of each, ^ 
the action, and with the action the effect, as such, of the second causes." 
QUEN. (I, 544) thus defines the terms causa prima et secunda: The M 
first came is that which is entirely independent, but upon it all <s 
other things, if there be any, depend; this is God. A second cause J 
is that which recognizes another cause prior to itself, upon which \i 
iLdepends; such are the efficient created causes, which, although v 
they operate through primary and relative virtue, nevertheless Ni^ 
depend upon the first cause, as for their existence, so also for their \ 
operation. For existence, I say, because without His preservation i 
they could exist in operating not even for a moment, and because 
without the co-operation of the same they could neither operate nor, ^ 
in operating, produce their effects." . | 

QUEN. (I, 532) justly remarks: "With the divine concurrence o* 
with respect to the object there coincide the divine omnipresence, ,7 
which is an act of Divine Providence, and formally and definitively, N 
viz., in the Biblical sense, denotes both the substantial, illocal, in 
communicable, illimitable presence with creatures, which the Scho- r 
lastics, in the description of the concurrence of God with creatures, /Njx 
call the immediatio suppositi,^ and His efficacious and omnipotent v* 
working, which they here call the immediatio virtutis, G_e_n. 1:2; Ps. * 
/139: 7; Jer. 23: 23, 24; Wis. 1: 6, 7, 8; Acts 17: 27, 28; Col. 1: 17." .! 

[11] QUEN. (I, 531): "The objects of the con(^rrence_^are_all_the ^ 
actims and effects, as such, of second causes. It is only the general j 
and indeterminate concurrence that is here discussed, i. e. , it is here ^ 
merely in general asserted that no action is accomplished without 
the co-operation of God; Imt the character of this concurrence is ( 
not here taken into the account. It is, therefore, indeed, readily N 
granted, but not here specially developed, that the concurrence may . 

* [Compare a chapter from Gerhard, translated in Evangelical Review, vol. 
xviii., 310.] 

f [See list of Scholastico- Dogmatic terms in Appendix, under Subsistentia.] 


be a special or gracious concurrence, by which God is present_to_all 

_amL use 

ful things, by supplying the occasion, inciting, moving, aiding, 

approving, etc. ; also 

peculiar alone to the holy writers of the Old and New Testaments, 

which embraces a supernatural and extraordinary illumination of 
the mind, and likewise a peculiar movement, suggestion, inspira 
tion, impulse, and dictation of the Holy Ghost for writing or 
speaking such a thing and not something else. (Ib. 543. ) Thus 
ROLL. (443) distinguishes also between " natural actions" and 
supernatural actions of man : "Some can be elicited by man 
in his natural strength; others transcend man s natural strength." 
The latter he does not here discuss. In relation to the natural acts, 
however, he remarks: "With natural acts God concurs, indeed, 
by a general concurrence, but not exclusively; for extraordinarily, 
under that general influence, there is also a peculiar influence con 
tained, conferring a more intense strength to act and a more power 
ful movement upon one creature rather than another." 

[12] QUEN. (I, 545): "With second causes, God concurs ac 
cording to the need and requirement of each, i. e., when, as often 
as, and in the manner that, the cause, according to the condition 
of its nature, demands this concurrence. For God does not change 
the nature of the agents or the manner and order of their action. 
but He permits natural agents to act naturally, free agents to act 
freelv. With second causes God concurs according to their 


nature, by operating conformably to His most sympathetic, uni 
versal disposition, freely with the free, necessarily with the neces 
sary, feebly with the feeble, vigorously with the vigorous." HOLL. 
(444): With necessary agents God concurs uniformly, e. g., with 
fire, in order for itTto burn, with the sun, in order for it to shine. 
With free agents God concurs variously, leaving to them their free 
decision and the free power to choose this or that; for the order 
that God has once established He does not easily change, Ps. 
119: 90." 

[13] The most difficult problem in the science of Theology is 
that of exhibiting the method of the divine concurrence in the evil 
actions of men, without at the same time in any wise throwing the $ 
blame of the evil upon the first cause, i. e.. upon God. The Dog- ^/^ 
maticians employ for this purpose the two formula?: "God concui s^-^j 
hi producing the effect, not the defect; God concunTas to the ma - J 
terials, not as to the form. The former of these is _ iniendedJo ^ 
teach that God has indeed furnished the power through which the 
action could have become a good one; but that, if on the part of 


man this lias not been employed for such purpose, the blame for 
that does not fall upon God. The other formula is intended to 
teach that the power, the ability in itself considered, with which 
an action can be accomplished, is indeed to be ascribed to the di 
vine co-operation, while the application of it, and the direction 
which is given to this power, is allotted to human freedom, and is 
accordingly to be imputed alone to man. One of these formulae we 
find employed by QUEN. , the other by HOLL. 

Q.UEN. (I, 545): We distinguish between the action and the 
ara^ia of the action; between the effect andjjigjdefect. The Supreme 
Being concurs with the actions and the effects, but not with the 
ara^ia of the actions; for, although the universal cause influences 
the entire action of the particular causes, yet indeed, of the drafta 
and evil, as such, if it inhere in an action, there is no other cause 
than a creature, inasmuch as in acting it departs from its own rule 
and the order of the First Agent, viz. , God, and applies the divine 
concurrence otherwise than it should. Hence we say in the thesig 
that God influences the actions and effects, as such,. _ of second 
causes, i. e. , as the actions and effects are, in their entity or essence, 
to the exclusion of the idea of the defects and faults, which have 
no entity, and originate from a deficiency of action in the causes. 
In_short, God enters jnto sinful actions^ with respect to their entity 
and iiatural Jorm (species naturte)^ jmd not with respec^jto their 
defonnity and moral form, (species mom). He also concurs in dis 
graceful acts, and is inwardly present to them, yet in such a man 
ner as not to be defiled, inasmuch as spiritual substance is liable to 
pollution no more than is the sun." (HuTT. (234) : "God, as the 
universal cause 1 affords^onlyjhis, viz. , that you are able to act : but" 
the fact jthatjrgu act wickedly proceeds from a particular cause, 
yigu_yQiir perverse will.") 

HOLL. (443) : "With the formal dvopia or drajla of actions morally evil, 
God undoubtedly does not concur by any positive influence, be 
cause wickedness is a defect and privation, not proceeding from 
God the Most Perfect, in whom no defect can occur, but from a 
human will failing in its action. But God concurswththe remote, 

not ivith^h^^romatematArM^ actions morattyjsvil. The former is 
an indeterminate act; the latter is an act determinate and applied 
to a prohibited thing. When, for example, Eve extended her hand 
to the forbidden fruit, two acts were present: (1) the extension of 
the hand; (2) the extension applied to the forbidden fruit. The 
former act is said to be the remote material; the latter, the proxi 
mate material. With the latter, God does not concur, because His 
concurrence is general and indeterminate; and, therefore, the deter- 



mination to this or that object is not from God as from the first and 
universal cause, but from the second and particular cause. With 
respect to the concurrence of God with actions morally good, HOLL. 
(443) distinguishes between the physical and moral concurrence. 
"Physically (God) affords a general concurrence with moral actions, 
by sustaining strength of mind and body, adapted to act. Morally, 
He concurs, by commanding and promising. 

[14] HOLL. (443): "God concurs with the actions of creatures 
by the immediateness of His power and being. He concurs by the 
immediateness of His being (immediatione suppositi}, because God, 
by His substance, is especially near to creatures operating, inas 
much as He fills all in all. Jer. 23: 24. He concurs, also, by the 
immediateness of His power (immediatione virtutis~), by His effica 
cious influence on the action of the creature, and by immediately 
and proximately affecting the result, in that He worketh all in 
all. 1 Cor. 12: 6. A person is said to act immediately, either ex 
clusively or inclusively. Kxdusivdy^ when he acts alone; inclusively, 
when any one attain prn^iynately an action and repult by the co 
operation of others with him. God s immediate influence upon the 
actions of creatures is not exclusive, as though creatures were ex 
cluded from the action, or were inoperative. Every creature does 
its own part: but God, together with the creatures acting, affects 
the action and result immediately and proximately by His own 

[15] HOLL. (445): " Those who teach a previous concurrence, 
are guilty of a contradiction with respect to what succeeds. For 
ILGod concur, He does not precur; if He co-operat^ He does not 
pre-operate. A premotion is an antecedent act; but concurrence 
is not antecedent, but occurs when the action itself is produced. 
If divine concurrence were to predetermine free agents to action, 
they would act necessarily, not freely." 

QUEN. (I, 544): "Second causes or agents, whether natural or 
free, have not, for the eliciting of an action, the need to be excited 
by a previous impulse, in the manner in which a pick, a ham 
mer, or an axe receives a previous motion from the workman, as 
they either have a power for operating that is peculiar to them 
selves and innate, as fire, or they are the power itself of action, as 
heat; yea, if created things could in no way exert themselves with 
out that previous excitation, it would follow that their will is ex 
cited also to vicious actions." 

[16] QUEN. (I, 533): "Governing is an act of Divine Provi 
dence, by which God symmetrically arranges^each and every 
creature, in its peculiar strength, actions, and suffering, tolfoe 


glory of the Creator_and__thejgpod of this universe 1 _and_especialiy 
tojthe salvation of the godly." 

[17] CALOV. (Ill, 1196): " As Preservation is most particularly 
occupied with the essences, strength, and faculties of men, and of 
other objects, especially those that are permanent, so Governing is 
occupied pre-eminently with the actions and sufferings of all men 
and things. . . . But this governing is not only universal, but 
extends also to individual actions, and moderates and directs them 
all. Prov. 24: 12; Jer. 16: 9." 

The difference between the Christian and the ante-Christian doc 
trine of Providence is stated by CHMN. (Loc. Th., I, 129) as fol- 
lows: "It is well known of what nature the dogma of Epicurus 
was, who altogether did away with Providence, viz., that God, 
who is supremely happy, is not affected with the care of governing 
inferior things, because such an occupation would interfere with 
His happiness, and would not be worthy of His divine excellence. 
Therefore ? he concedes that in second causes there is a certain 
strength, according to which, when . an application of an agent to 
that which is passive occurs, an action and change ensue; but he. 
denies that this action is controlled and gaverned by God. Yea 
EeTsays that God does not^arej. but, just as atoms floating in the 
sun are turned about without order, and by chance, so that the 
same atom which has been before in the upper part is now in the 
middle, and afterwhile will be at the bottom, if the chance should 
so carry it, so Epicurus imagines that second causes fluctuate, by 
chance and without order, and that results are indeed produced 
from the application of sufficient causes, but says that the applica 
tion itself of the causes does not occur by means of the government 
and control of God, but as the chance may have happened." 

The Christian_doctrine of Providence, therefore, excludes every 
conception of a blind necessity as well as of a mere chance. HOLL. 
(437) : "We are not to maintain a stoical fate, by which all "things 
occur from absolute and inevitable necessity; nor the more rigid 
astrological fate * by which even the free acts of the human will de 
pend upon the influence of the stars, and are determined thereby." 
But he nevertheless admits " a Christian fate, which is the neces- 
sary connection of causes and effects, of extrinsic necessity, jn_so 
far as jtjias been infallibly foreknown by God, established by an 
ahsolute_or_conditionate_decree, and governed by divine directkru 
agreeably disposing it" In Christian fate there is therefore ;;d- 
mitted a necessary connection of cause and effect, but one of such 

* [" Astrological fate is either the mvre rigid or the milder . . . The milder is 
that which occurs without impairing human liberty." (HoLL., 443. ) TR.] 


a character that the influence of God upon the effect that is to be 
produced is not thereby excluded. 

(Id. 440): "Fortune, which is an accidental event, accompany 
ing a result intended by a cause acting freely, does not exist^with 
rgspect to the omniscient jmd most wise God (Wis. 14: 3), but 
only with respect to ignorant jnan. 

[18] QUEN. flTSBSTT^^Permission is an act of governing Provi 
dence, by which God does not employ hindrances which no finite v 
agent can overcome, or knows how to overcome, in order to restrain 
rational creatures, inclining of their own accord to sin^ from an 
evil fen-hidden bv the Law. hut. for just reasons, permits them to 
rush into BIDS, Ps. 81: 12; Acts 14: 16; Rom. 1: 24, 28." HOLL. 
(449): " Divine permission is not (1) kind indulgence, as though 
God simply does not care when men "commit crimes; nor is it (2) 
a mitigation of the Law, as if to grant men license to sin; nor (3) 
is it weakness in GocT, or a defect of knowledge, as though He 
willed or approved evil, or a defect of power, as though He could 
not check sin; nor (4) does it makejGod an unconcerned witness 
of sins, who neither forbids sins, nor fixes a limit to wickedness, Y 
nor restrains crimes by punishment. But it is (5) a negative act, 
consisting of the denial or suspension of an insuperable hindrance. \ 
God, indeed, could check or restrain the sinner by means of the 
interposition of a forcible or insuperable obstacle; but the most 
holy Divinity has the very best reasons for permitting sin. Mean 
while (God), by a legal impediment, restrains the will of man 
sinning, and continually invites the sinner to repentance by exhib 
iting rewards and penalties. " Also the following discriminations. < $ 
QUEN. (I, 533): "God indeed permits, but He does not will, that 
which is permitted, which occurs not, indeed, while God abso- ^ 
lutely wills that it should not be, i. e. , while He restrains and 
hinders, yet, nevertheless, while He does not will it, Ps. 5: 4; 
1 Jojm 3: 8. God s not hindering is not willing, but is His per 
mitting, and, at the same time, also, His being averse to, those 
things which He permits, in so far as they seriously displease 
Him." GRH. (IV, 88): "God does not will sin, and yet does 
not prevent it, which is permission. But, although He may per 
mit sin willingly and not reluctantly, nevertheless His permission 
and His will have respect to diverse objects; the permission is 
occupied with the sin itself, but the will with the useful end, 
which God, in His wisdom, knows how to bring forth from it." 

[19] QUEN. (I, 534): Hindrance is an ac^oLgP-Ygining Provi 
dence, by which God limits the action of creatures according to 
His judgment, so that they domrt produce the result, which 


otherwise^ they would effect^either by a natural or a free power to 

[20] QUEN. (I, 534): Direction is an act of governing Pro vi- 
dence^by which God so regulates the good actions of creatures, 
that they tend and are led teethe object intended _by Grocl (Acts 4: 
28), but directsjthe evil actions to a certain end prescribed by 
Himself, yet not considered by those who sin, and frequently con 
trary to their intention. Thus 1 Sam. 9: 17; 10: 21; Gen. 37: 7; 
50: 20." 

[21] QUEN. (I, 534): Determination is an act of governing 
Providence, by which God has appointed to the strength, actions, 
and sufferings of creatures, certain limits within which they are j 
restrained, both with respect to time and with respect to greatness ~^ 
and degree, Job 1: 12; 2: 6; Ps. 124: 2." " V 

[22] CHMN. (Loc. Th., I, 127): "Although the Providence of N 
God extends to all creatures, yet it has its grades. For it is S* 
especially intrusted with the government of the human race, 1 Cor. V 

d9: 9; Matt. 10: 31; Rom. 8: 20. In the second place, although 
the Providence of God maketh the sun to rise, and sendeth rain 
upon the just and unjust, nevertheless there is a peculiar and pre- V 
i eminent relation of a special Providence towards those who are y f 
J members of the Church, 1 Tim. 4: 10; Ps. 33: 13, 18, 19; 100: 3." X* 

BR. (308): "Divine Providence has also, with respect to the JS 
^ acts towards which it is directed, its own grades, and, above other * Y 
creatures, relates to men, but, in the human race, especially to be- \ $ -t 
~ lievers, Rom. 8:28." Hence the division "into general and special \ vf 
* Providence. The Jormer is that by~which God preserves and X ^ ^ 
| governs the entire earth, and whatever is contained in its circuit, y X * j 
^ The latter is that by which God most kindly regards, mostjenderly x | 
cherishes, and most agreeably rules botli the Church Militant, or S C 
j the assembly of believing men, jmd_the_Church Triumphant, or the v, ^c 
vj choir of angels and elect men." HOLL. (448). ^ M$ 

^ QUEN. [I, 529) distinguishes between the general and the special 
? object of Providence. ^ThTgeneraLobject consists of all things in - 
? general which exist a Hf>b. 1 : 3; Wis. 8: 1; 12: 13, 15. The special ^? \ 
^ object is partly primary, and^pajrtly secondary. The primary object 
^ consists of angels and men, and, indeed, all of these in general, 
^ Acts 17: 28; Matt. 5: 45 (p. 530). Its object, in the most special 
sense, consists of godly and believing men, Deut. 32: 9; Ps. 4: 3; 
33: 18; 37: 18, 25; 73: 24; 77: 20; 91: 11; Heb. 1: 14; Matt 10: 31. 
All other created things, without even the least exception, are 
secondary objects, Deut. 25: 4; 1 Cor. 9: 9; Job 39: 1; Ps. 147: 9; 
6: 8- Matt. 6: 30; 8: 31; 10: 29, 30; Luke 12: 6.~~ 


As man is the centre of the entire creation, and thus also of 
IL V Divine Providence, the Dogmaticians discuss at length the relation 
yj in which Providence stands to the origin, the progress, and the end 
of human life. 

QUEN. (I, 529): * God controls the life of men partly in its 
entrance, by forming and preserving men in the maternal womb 
(JoblO: 3, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12; Ps. 139: 13, 15, 16; Acts 17: 25); and 
by bringing them forth from the womb (Job 10: 18; Ps. 22: 9, 10; 
71 : 6) ; ^partly in itsjprogress (Deut. 30: 20; Job 10: 12; Ps. 56: 8; 
37: 23, 24; Job 34: 21; Prov. 16: 3; 21: 1; Ps. 139: 2; Matt. 6: 
25; 10: 30); partly in its termination (Job 14: 5), so that the ap 
pointed course of life is either attained (Gen. 47: 29; 2 Sam. 7: 
12), or shortened (Ps. 55: 23), or prolonged (Isa. 38: 5), or 
doubled (renewed after death) (1 Kings 17: 22; 2 Kings 13: 21; 
Matt. 9: 25; Luke 7: 15; Jo_hn 11: 44; Acts 9: 40; 20: 12)." 

Concerning (1) HOLL. (427): The entrance of human life embraces 
both its formation and preservation in the jvomb of the mother, and 
its being brought forth from the womb/ Thereupon BR. remarks 
(309) : "For this reason it is correctly stated that God has respect 
not only to the universal, but also to the particular cause, and 
supplies the defect of second causes, or, at least, directs and gov- 
x ^ K \ ems them in acting. This, indeed, some explain so as to affirm, 
X on the one hand, that when the wonderful variety, and connection, 
\ and structure of the members of the body are considered, an effic"- 
i ient particular cause acting with knowledge is required; and, there- 
x fore, that another and more sublime virtue than that which is in 
i the seed (commonly called 6vvaniq 7r/>a<T//), and which cannot bo 
5 conceived of unless as belonging to God Himself, concurs with a 
^ppecial influence. On the other hand, also, when the immateri- 
\ ality of the soul is considered, and the fact, therefore, that it must 
I be produced independently of the subject, or from nothing; and 
* that such a production demands an infinite power of action, and 
is, therefore, peculiar to God alone; they infer that, for the produc 
tion of the human soul, God affords a special and determinate 
influence. But others, although they believe that the human body 
and soul are alike produced by the parents themselves as second 
causes, with the concurrence of God as the universal cause, never 
theless regard the acts of protection afforded in the production and 
the birth of man, against various calamities and dangers, as many 
eminent proofs of peculiar divine care and favor; in addition to 
universal, they ascribe to God also a special or particular concur 
rence, and refer thither the passage, Job 10: 8-11." 

Concerning (2) HOLL. (427): God controls the progress of life, 







/*- / 


\ : so 

t~y*Sf JT?X* /f^ 

the means pj_siipporting_life, Ps. 145: 16; dtfectingjmr 
steps, i. e., by leading our designs, which have been begun and 
performed, to their desired results, Ps. 37: 23; by bringing _to 
nought the snares or repelling the; open violence of enemies^ Ps. 3 : 
I-, 8; by fitting and calling us to a certain mode of life, J^r. 1 : 57." ^x 

Coneerning (3) BR. (312): "Divine Providence respects the 
termination of human life, not only so far as by a common law j; 
there is given to every one his own constitution, by virtue of which \j ^< 
he can, with the general concurrence of God, attain a certain space 
of life (the natural limit of life, Ps. 90: 10); but also as to some \ 
men life is prolonged beyond that boundary (2 Kings 20: 1, 6) to ^ 
which they would come by the strength of nature: others the end^v 
of life threatens sooner (Ps. 55: 23; 102: 24) than it should accord- \ 
ing to the course of nature (terminus abbreviabilis )." (Id. 313): | 
" Divine Providence, moreover, changes the natural limit of human ^$ 
life (the preternatural or hyperphyrical limit of life), both with respect ^1 
to the godly (the limit of grace), and with respect to wicked men v 
{the limit of wrath). (Id. 314) : " To the godly God prolongs life, V 
either as a reward of their odedience (Ex. 20: 12; Prov. 3: 1, 2;x 
4: 10), or for the public good (2 Cor. 1: 8; Phil. 2: 27, 30). To * 
the same class He shortens life, partly to prevent them from being | 
corrupted by the wicked examples of others (Wis. 4: 10, 11), partly 
that they may not see the coming evils, and be distressed (2 Chron. X ^ 
34: 28; Js. 26: 20; 57: 2)." "God, by a just judgment prema- N 
turely breaks the thread of life of the wicked, when He either Him- 
self sends deadly disease or death upon them (Deut. 28: 21, 22 ;M 
Gen. 38: 7, 10; 1 Sam. 25: 38; Jer. 28: 15, 16), or~gives the com- > 
maud to inflict death (Gen. 9: 6; Ex. 21: 12, 14; 22: 18; Lev. 18 "J 
and 20), or allows them to suffer disease or suffer violent death by * 
intemperance (2 Kjngs 8: 15), or other crimes (2 Sam. 18: 14; 17: J 
23)." (Id. 315): "And thus it is also evident, that it is not ab-V 
solutely necessary that every man should die at that very time, and ^ 
1 by that kind of death by which he does die; or, in other words, thafcvH 
this has not been absolutely and immutably decreed by God, apart * 
from or previous to any regard to causes or circumstances to be 
found outside of God. For, otherwise, the prayers and vows of 
the godly, and divine promises and threatenings, would be vain. 
3 The hyperphysical or divine limit is always hypothetical, including 
Ithe condition of piety or impiety, or of the contempt of means." 

[23] CHMN. (Loc. Th., I, 128): "That God has not been bound 
to_second causes in sucri a manner^ as to do noth ing^else than as ^> 
second causes excite Him, but that, beyond tin- customary order 
of second causes, and contrary to the commp_n_cpurse of nature, He 

f-y-Hs*** ff^iS tVT3t-T A*4- 0*~-^ /T.^. ^- --*/ >: .-. 72T^*, J J^- rT^f^ -*^-- t^^at^r r-t- 

</***, ^- >jLjf t^tiis^ r 

/ tSsL*&*^e- <?ff&, -^-sin^fi &/ S^&t-i&Jr&r M^/a^f i****. * -3S dCt-a^X- 


wills and is able to aid the Chjirch^Jind to pimuth,_th_3KLekd^-.aD 
as_either to hinder, change, mitigate, or intensify second causes._" 

QUEN. (I, 535): "Providence is extraordinary when God operates 
either without means, or beyond or above means, or contrary to 
means and their nature, or, what is the same, above and beyond 
the order instituted by Himself, e. g., Ex. 34: 28; 1 Kings 19: 8; 
Is. 38: 8; 2 Kings 6: 6, etc. (all miracles are effects ol the extra 
ordinary providence of God). Providence is ordinary jvyhere :_God 
carries on His works through ordinary means, viz., through the 
established and accustomed course of nature. 

[24] HOLL. (448): "Providence with ref<?re/ice_Jo_20o^_is_ihat 
which by preservation maintains, by co-operation promotes, jmd 
by governing directs the good of creatures to the praise of the divine 
glory^ Providence icith reference to evil t is that by which God is 
occupied with moral evil, not as an indifferent observer, but as the 
most just Judge, and, therefore, by acts preceding, attending, and 
following sin, exercises justice tempered by ftracej* In the dis 
crimination here made, the different relation in which God stands 
to the good and the evil is explained essentially in the same man 
ner as in the doctrine of the divine government (comp. notes 18- 
21). The difference consists only in this, that here the more 
general conception of Providence is assumed, which embraces both 
government and preservation. 

As acts of Providence preceding sin, HOLL. (448450) has enu 
merated: " Foresight, aversion to the sin foreseen, and hindering." 
As acts attending: " Support of the nature acting wickedly, con 
currence with the remote material of a vicious action, permission 
of the arai-la adhering to the sinful action, limiting determination of 
the sin, direction to a good end." As acts following: u Imposing 
of the divine penalties, Isa. 34 : 8, remission of sins. 

[25] CHMN. (Loc. Th., I, 125): ( JProyjxieji(^s_a^eji^ml^a^ioji 
of God^ by which He is present with His creature, sustaining and 
preserving it, as long as lie wishes it to be preserved, and preserves 
tlie order of His work appointed by Himself, not by any fatal 
necessity, but as a most free agent; so that, for the sake of men," 
He controls all things, and moderates, changes, and hinders many 
things with respect to second causes,." 

GRH. (IV, 136) thus summarily states the whole doctrine of 
Providence: "The action of Divine Providence is either eternal, 
viz. , Trp6yvuatr /cat TrpMeoif^ or of time, viz. , the preservation and gov 
erning of things created; and this, too, either ordinary, through 
means, or extraordinary, without means, or contrary to means. 
Both are occupied with all things, especially with human nature, 


in the preservation and governing of which the life and actions of 
men come forth. Either the entrance, or the progress, or the ter 
mination of life, is regarded. Some actions are good, and that, 
too, either civilly or spiritually; others are evil. How the action 
of Divine Providence concurs in all these, we have explained by 
certain aphorisms." 





22. When were they created f 

/CERTAINTY in regard to the existence of angelsjvejtttaip 
^-^ only through revelation ; for reason can at best make their 
existence only possible or probable. [1] They are, indeed, 
not referred to in the history of the creation ; nevertheless we 
know that they are beings created by God, and we have reason 
to believe that they were not created before, nor after, but 
within the six days of creajtion ; yet we know nothing further 
as to the day upon which they were created. [2] 

The Holy Scriptures furnish us with more specific informa 
tion, both in regard to the nature of the angels and their moral 


Thejjoiy_SciipUires represent the angels as, indeed, finite, 
because created, but intelligent and spiritual, thereforeJncQr- 
poreal beings, which, without needing a body, nevertheless 
have a personal subsistence. (QuEN. I, 444): " The angels are 
spiritual substances (Ps. 104: 4; Heb. 1: 14), i. e., without any 
bodily form (whether gross or refined], finite, complete, and thus 
real persons [hypostases] . [3] Angels are, further, intelligent 
substances, and very capable of becoming well acquainted both with 
themselves and with other things." They were originally created 
byjjod in orderjbo promote Hisjglory and to serve Jlim. [4] 

*The doctrinal writers differ from one another in assigning a place for this 
topic. Some, as QUEN. and HOLL., place it next in order to that of Creation, 
others to that of Providence. CAL. (IV, 2) thus expresses, himself in regard to 
the place which should be assigned to it : "The discussion concerning angels 
may be presented either in connection with the works of creation, as is commonly 
done, when it prefaces the doctrine of Divine Providence ; or, it may be presented 
in connection with the topic of Divine Providence, inasmuch as this embraces 
also the angels, and besides, employs them, as its ministers, in the govemmtnt of men, 
both to bless and to punish them. The latter place seems the more appropriate 
since, under the head of the creation by God, one cannot so suitably treat of the 
apostasy of angels, or of the establishment of the good angels in truth and con- 
created holiness : these matters more appropriately belong to the topic concern 
ing the Providence of God." 


From this description of their nature, and of the design of 
their creation, as given in the Holy Scriptures, there follows 
the series of attributes which we are to ascribe to them, and 
whereby we become better acquainted with their nature. [5] 
From the nature of angels ^spiritual beings, there follow : 
1. The ^tnbuJGs_ofjindivisibility, invisibility, immutabilityj 
immortality, eternal duration, illocality, definitive ubiety, and 
agility. For purely spiritual beings can neither be divisible 
nor visible (indivisibilitas invisibilitas); [6] not physically 
changeable, for only that which is material is subject to such 
a physical alteration and development (immutabilitas) ; [7] not 
mortal, for only that which is corporeal is perishable ; they, 
however, in duration are imperishable (immortalitas dnratio 
seviterna.} [8] Further, they are not present at any particular 
place in such a manner as to occupy there a portion of space ; 
and yet they are not everywhere present as God is, but are 
always present only at one particular place, yet in such a man 
ner that they can be at any place they may choose, even the 
smallest, because they have no body that can occupy space 
(illocalitas ubietas definitive). [9] Finally, as they are not re 
stricted in their movements by space and time, they can move 
with amazing celerity (agilitas). [10] 

As intelligent beings, the angels possess the attrihutes_of 
know ledge and freedom of the will f and, in view of the service 
for which they are designed, the attribute of power. God has 
therefore bestowed upon them reason, [11] and free will, [12] 
and great, though not unlimited, might and power. [13] 


The Holy Scriptures divide angels into good and evil, as 
suming thus a difference in their moral condition. This 
could not, howver^Jiavejixisted from the beginning ; for, as 
everything that at the creation proceeded from the hand of 
God was good, the angels must have been good also ; at that 
time, therefore, we must assume that the moral condition of 
all of them was equally good. The difference in this respect 
must have arisen subsequently. We must distinguish^there- 
fpe,Jhe_onginal condition and_ that _which_was . consegjient 
upon_this (status originates et originalem secutus). 


The original condition was one in which all the angels were 
equally good, righteous, and holy, endowed by God with wis- 
dom and with the ability perfectly to perform the will of God, 
[14] yet with such freedom of the will, also, that the possibil 
ity of disobedience towards God and of apostasy was not ex 
cluded. [15] With these gracious gifts the angels were en 
dowed by God, in order that by the proper use of the same 
they might attain to the end for which they \\ere created, 
namely, the beatific sight and enjoyment of God ; the original 
condition is therefore called the state of grace. [16] As, how 
ever, some of the angels made a bad use of the liberty that 
had been granted to them, the original condition ceased, and 
there arose that difference of moral condition in consequence 
of which the angels became divided into two classes, the good 
and the evil, the former entering into the state of glory, and 
the latter into the state of misery. [17] 


From the time when the angels separated into two classes, a 
change took place also in those who did not become disobe 
dient towards God. For, because they remained faithful to 
God and true to that which is good, they have, as a reward 
for this, been so confirmed in that which is good that they can 
no longer be in danger of falling, and that even the possibility 
of their sinning no longer exists. BR. (267) : "TJiose are called 
good (angels) who have persevered in the goodness or righteousness 
and holiness in which they were created, and have been confirmed 
by God in that which is good, as a gracious reivard for their obe 
dience, so that they can no longer lose this goodness, or sin, or be 
come evil." [18] Thus the good angels have, at the same time, 
reached the goal for which they were originally created by 
God, for they have attained to the enjoyment of beholding 
God, and so have entered upon the state of glory. [19] The 
enlargement of all the powers originally bestowed upon them 
is merely a consequence of this condition. [20] If they were 
wise before (in the state of grace), they are now still more so, 
because they now see God ; [21] if they were holy before, they 
are now still more so, in such a sense that there is notjripw 
even accessibility of their sinning. Their liberty is, however, 

not hereby lessened, but increased, for they do right not by V 
cpjnjmlsioiij but from an inner free jmpulse. [22] And so, too, ^ 
their power has been magnified ; for they are now able to over- 
come^theeyil angels who were formerly as mighty as they. [23] Y 
The employmeiit^of good angels consists (a) jn^ worshiping ^| 
God and (6) serving Him in the world by protecting and ^ 
__.L-U:. the pious, as^ well as by punishing and restraj.n- x^ 

ing the wicked. QUEN. (I, 450): "The duties and works of < 
the good angels are to worship and praise God, Ps. 103: 20 ; 
148: 2; Is. 6: 3 ; and to execute His commands, Dan. 7: 10; 
as well by punishing the wicked, Gen. 19: 13 ; 2 Kings 19: 35, 
as by guarding and protecting the godly, Ps. 34: 7 ; 91: 11, 12 ; 
Heb. 1: 14." [24] 

For these services, which they render to men, they deserve 
our_^ratitude L but every_ species of worship or adoration ad- 
dressed to them is wicked and superstitious. [25] 

The Scriptures give us some intimation of a diversity of, 
rank among the angels, without, however, giving any specific 
Jnformation on the subject. [26] 


They are thus designated on account of their disobedience 
toward God, and the evil disposition remaining in them since 
the Fall. [27] HOLL. (396): " The evil angels are those who 
did not persevere in concreated wisdom and righteousness, 
but of their own free will turned away from God and the rule 
of right, and became the perpetual enemies of God and men, 
to be plagued with eternal torments." In what this disobe 

dience toward God consisted, cannot with certainty be learned 
from the Scriptures, but it is highly probable that pride was 
the sin through which they fell away from God. [28] The 
cause for this sin lay entirely in their will, with which they ^ ^ 
of their own accord turned away from God, and it was in no I 
sense owing to any outward necessity or any defect in their V 
i M nature. [29] How many of them thus apostatized from God, , 
at what time, and whether all at once concerning all this we ^ 


have no certain information in the Scriptures. We know only 


this, that their apostasy preceded the fall of man, and that one 

evil angel stands at their head, as their leader and chief. [30] 


As, however, the obedience of the good angels was followed 
by a reward, so the fall of the wicked angels was followed by 
a punishment on the part of God, namely this, that those who 
once apostatized from God remained forever rejected by Him, 
and accordingly have been transferred from the state of grace, 
in which they hitherto stood, into a condition of the greatest 
misery (sta/its wisma;); but they have to expect still heavier 
punishments at the judgment day. [31] 

And as, in the case of the good angels, their transfer into 
the state of glory was followed by an enlargement of the 
powers originally conferred upon them, so the transfer of the 
wicked angels was likewise followed by a diminution of" the 
powers originally conferred. They retain, indeed, those gifts 
and powers that are inseparable from their nature, but their 
knowledge is no longer, as in the state of grace, a source of 
blessing, but greatly obscured, and hence they think perversely 
about God and divine things. [32] 

But the wicked angels make it their work to detract to the 
utmost from the glory of God and to hinder men in their at- 
* tempts to secure their temporal and eternal welfare. [33] Yet 
they cannot, even in this way, w r ith all their malice, entirely 
avoid serving (Ind, for He makes use of them to punish the 
wicked and to chasten the godly for their own good. [34] 

Definition. QUEN. (I, 455): Angels are finite spirits, conT] 
plete, intelligent, endowed with great power and originally 
created by God in righteousness and holiness, for the glory of 
God and the service of man ; of whom some by their own free 
will fell from their Creator and from concreated perfection,! 
and were consequently deprived not only of the favor and 
felicity which they had, but also of the beatific vision of God 
which they might have been able to enjoy, and were cast into 
infernal fire for perpetual torment without any hope of pardon. 
The rest, however, continued in their original condition, and 
were so established by God in that which is good that they 
neither wish nor are able ever to lose it or fall away from it,j 
and are enjoying God eternally." 

[1] QUEN. (I, 443): "That anirds really exist is taught both by 
express declarations of Scripture, Ps. 104: 4; Heb^ I: f 14, qncLtiy 
the description of various apparitions, Gen. 18: 2; 19: 1, sq. The 

existence of angels is demonstrated, not so much by probable argu 
ments derived from philosophy, whether by the graduation of 
existences and the link needed for the completion of the universe 
(because there are creatures (1) merely corporeal, such as stars, 
stones, etc.; (2) partly corporeal and partly spiritual, as man;^ 
(3) purely spiritual, as angels), or by human testimony, or by ^ 
various experiences, as by one indisputable argument, namely, the M 
clear and oft-repeated assertion of the Scriptures." X 

BR. (251): " It is scarcely possible that the existence of angels vf 
can be clearly demonstrated from the light of nature, although \ 
probable reasons may be assigned for it." y> 

As to the meaning of the word, QUEN. (I, 442): "The name 
angel does not describe the nature of the being,Jbut its office, and 
signifies one sent, a legate, a messenger. Hence Augustine : Do 
you ask for the name of their nature ? It is spirit. Do you in 
quire concerning the name of their office? It is angel. The 
word angel etymologically signifies messenger. But by the uni 
versally received usage and style of Scripture language it designates 
^v \J a na t nre ar >d a specific creature." Yet because the word is orig 
inally nothing more than a designation of office, it is used in the. ^,- 
^Scriptures with reference also to the Son of God, as the uncreatecL7 ^ 
^v Angel. Is. 63: 9; Mai. 3: 1; Gen. 48: 16, seq. Also with refer-X* y> 

ence to men, Mai. 2: 7; ev. 1: 20; Mai. 3: 1; Mark 1: 2; Matt. ^ V 
| 11: 10; Luke 7: 27. 

[2] CHMN. (Loc. Th., I, 122): "Since Moses does not describe \ 
] the creation of angels, many curious inquiries have arisen, as, e. g., < 
When were they created ? . . . But, as the Scriptures do not states^ 
% the precise time and day of the creation of angels, we gladly remain . 
v in ignorance of that which we neither can nor ought to know. It * 
\4 is enough, therefore, for us to know (1) that the angels did not \ 
^ come into existence of their own accord, nor were begotten from they, 

^^ t . .-_ o. . - n.. i m ^ 

I substance of God, but were created; (2) that the angels did not^ ^ .^ 
exist from eternity, nor indeed before that beginning when all things \ ^ \ * 

X v which are in heaven and earth, visible and invisible, began to~be. 
\ For to have been in the beginning can be said of Him alone through^ 

whom all things were made, and who is eternal. John 1: 1-3." 
^ QUEN. (I, 459): "The angels were created by Gocf(Cpl. 1: 16; 
Ps. 104: 4; 103: 20) in time, along with this visible world, or 
within the period of the original six days; but on what day or at 
what time they were produced, we confess that we are willingly 
ignorant." The proof is thus stated by BR. (252): They were 
not created before the heavem and the earth, for these were created in 
the beginning, and so were the first among all created things see 


7 / 0* 

Gen. 1:1. And besides it is well known that the eternity of God 

is described by His existing before the foundation of the world. 
See Ps. 90: 2; Is. 48: 13. Moreover, they were created not after 
but within the six days, for after that interval God rested from the 
ordinary work of creation. That the angels were created before man 
is usually proved from Job 38: 1. And some believe that we are 
to understand also from this passage that the aiitHs were nvatnl 
upon the first day; namely, because when God founded the earth 
then the angels are said to have praised God. But these matters 
are not altogether clear; although we do not deny that the angels 
are intended by the term sons of God in chapter 1, v. 6, and we 
say that their beginning was contemporaneous with the origin of 
other creatures. Perhaps, also, as we know that man was created 
after the other creatures that were intended for his advantage, so 
also it may be correctly inferred that the angels who were to min 
ister unto man (according to Heb. 1:14) were created before man. 
Yet it is not necessary that we understand the angels to be intended 
by the terms heaven or light, in Gen. 1, metaphorically interpreted. 
[3] The angels are called complete substances, or substances 
subsisting per se, because they do not need a body in order that 
in conjunction with it they may constitute a person. HOLL. 
(378): "The human soul is an incomplete spirit, designed in 
itself and by its very nature to enter into the composition of an 
entire man. Hence also a separated soul has a natural propensity 
and inclination towards a body, with which as a component part it 
constitutes a complete man; but angels are not naturally designed 
to constitute a unit in themselves, along with a component part, 
but they have an essence terminating in itself. Wherefore the 
soul is an incomplete spirit, and angels are complete spirits." 
Thus the following distinction can be made between angels and 
men, that the former are complete spirits and the latter incom 
plete spirits; while the difference between God and the angels is, 
that He is an uncreated and infinite spirit, while they are created 
and finite spirits. BR. (254): "As the angels have a spiritual 
essence in common with God and the human soul, so they differ 
^ from God in that their essence is not infinite, but finite, and from 
the soul of man in that their substance is complete." 

The proof that angels are complete substances is drawn by 
QUEN. (I, 444): "(1) From their names, for they are called 
guardians, Dan. 6: 22; principalities, powers, Col. 1: 16; gods, 
Ps. 82: 6; sons of God, Job 2:1; men of God, Judges 13: 6. (2) 
From their personal actions, such as to minister, to stand before 
the Lord, to appear, to speak, etc., which surely cannot be attri- 

/&* f&y >t*V"/z^^ fy^v 

Stf^JL ^ 


buted to the inspired movements of men or to the mere actions of 
God. (3) From the fall or ruin of some angels, and the perseveiv 
ance of the good ones in the truth. (4) From what is ascribed to 
them, viz., knowledge, desire, power." This proof is regarded by 
the Dogmaticians as highly important, over against those who 
deny the personality of the angels. QUEN. (I, 444): "This 
ground is to be held against the Sadducees of old, who thought 
that angels were certain movements or affections excited in men; 
also against the Anabaptists, who foolishly imagined that angels 
were merely the actions of God, punishing crimes or rewarding 
good deeds; also against David George, the heresiarch of the last 
century, who confounded angels with the thoughts of the human 

[4] CAL. (IV, 23): "The purpose for which angels were created 
was, with respect to God, His praise and the execution of the 
diyme will (Jojb 38TT;"Ps. 103: 20; 104: 4); with.respect to them 
selves, the eternal enjoyment of God; with respect to man, service, 
J[(r_which they were specially and divinely destined, inasmuch as 
God created all things for man, and made the angels His servants 
at their very creation, Ps. 104, in order to use their ministry 
especially, for man and his salvation. Heb. 1: 14." 

[5] The most of the Dogmaticians divide the attributes of angels 
into negative and affirmative. As the former class, they enumerate 
indivisibility, invisibility, immutability, immortality, illocality. 
As the latter, knowledge, freedom of the will, power, eternal dura_- 
tion ; definitive ubiety, agility. Instead of following this merely 
external method of arrangement, we prefer treating these attributes, 
after the example of CAL., BR., and others, in the order corres 
ponding to the nature of angels; but we enumerate them, never 
theless, after QUEN. and HOLL. , as they are less extensively treated 
by CAL. and BR. 

[6] QUEN. (I, 445): "The indivisibility of an angelic substance 
is owing to its incorporeity or immateriality, for what is not made 
oi matter, is no quantity, nor has it parts outside of parts, and 
consequently is not divisible into quantitative parts." 

Id. (I, 446): Invisibility is a consequence of spirituality; for a 
spirit cannot be seen by bodily eyes, hence also the angels are 
enumerated among invisible beings (a<5para). Col. 1: 16." 

[7] The immutability of angels is restricted, as one that is not 
such absolutely, but comparatively and -relatively. HOLL. (382): 
"God alone is absolutely immutable, the angels are immutable 
only relatively; because they are not subject to physical mutations, 
which are peculiar to natural bodies. For the angels do not beget, 




nor are they begotten ; they are neither increased nor diminished ; 
they neither grow old, nor decay; nor do they proceed upon foot 
from one place to another. Yet they are not beyond the reach of 
every kind of change, for they vary the where of - their presence 
(suum ubi), they rejoice, are sad, love, or hate; these are moral 

[8] (a) When immortality is ascribed to angels, this is intended 
to express that there is nothing in them, as incorporeal beings, who 
for this reason are not subject to change or decay, that could occa 
sion their death; but it is not meant thereby to deny that God has 
power over their life also. 

CAL. (IV, 24): "Although they may be remanded again into 
nothing by God, through His absolute power, by whom they were 
created from nothing, and may thus be called corruptible, as God 
alone is incorruptible, and as He alone has immortality, 1 Tim. 
6: 16; yet they are free from physical corruption, nor have they 
any internal principle of corruption, because they are altogether 
destitute of matter, and so by nature are incorruptible and im 
mortal." HOLL. expresses this by means of the distinction be_- 
tween incorruptibility in a physical and in a metaphysical sensej. 
" Imv.-inlly (>i/> infra), they are j>fii/xi<-<il/i/ incorrupt iMe, liec;iuse 
they li:ivr not in themselves ;in inteni;il principle of ch.-mire or cor 
ruption, which is matter. Nor has any physical body such power 
as to corrupt a spirit or an angel outwardly (ab extra). But if cor 
ruptible be used in a metaphysical sense, of something that can be 
reduced to nothing by absolute divine power, then the angels are 
corruptible, because if God would so command they could return 
to the nothing from which they arose." Wherefore, other Dogma- 
ticians suggest, instead of the term corruptibility, the expression 
annihilability. Further, the angels do not possess the principle of 
immortality of themselves, but it has been graciously given to them 
by God; whence HOLL. (882) thus further distinguishes: "The 
angels are immortal and .incorruptible not independently, origin 
ally, and in consequence of an eternal essence, for thus God alone 
is immortal; but they are immortal dependency, participatively, 
and through the grace of God, who creates and preserves them." 

(6) QUEN. (I, 446): " Endless duration is attributed to angels, as 
the mean between eternity and time. Eternity is that which be 
longs to God alone, and is without beginning or end. Time, which 
belongs to corporeal creatures, has both beginning and end. But 
endless duration has a beginning^ yet is without end." CAL. (IV, 
28) : " The created duration of things indestructible in their nature 
is distinguished from time, and is called .endless duration [sempi- 


ternity] (aevum) by philosophers." Endless duration then practi 
cally expresses no more than immortality; the difference seems to 
consist only in this, that the same conception, viz. , that of continu 
ing forever, is deduced in the one case by the negation of matter, 
and in the other by the negation of time. The angels are im 
mortal, for they have no matter which is subject to change or 
decay; they are imperishable as to their duration, for their exist 
ence is not measured by time. 

[9] The angels, as incorporeal beings, occupy no space, and 
hence are illocal. QUEN. (I, 446): "The angels are not in a place 
by circumscription, as natural bodies, because they are spirits, but 
they rather co-exist with a corporeal place or with a body." Yet 
they are not omnipresent, but always present only at a particular 
place. This latter idea is expressed by the attribute of alicubitas 
(being somewhere). QUEN. (1,446): " There is attributed to them 
7roii or ubi (a somewhere), in which an angel definitively is. For 
angels are in a certain space by designation, or definitively, i. e. , 
their substantial, not merely virtual, presence is limited (dcfinitur) in a 
certain space, so that they are there, and not in other spaces, and much 
less everywhere ; and, because an angel is devoid of parts, the whole 
angel is not only in the whole place, but the whole angel can exist 
in every part of the place, even the very least, yea, in a point. 
The manner in which the being somewhere (das Irgendwosein) is 
predicated of angels, of God, or of physical bodies, is described by 
the following distinctions: Of the angels, it is said that they are 
somewhere definitively (in tibi definitivo}, since they at their own 
pleasure limit a certain space for themselves, in the whole of which 
they wholly are, and wholly in each part of the space, because their 
essence is indivisible. " Of God, it is said that "He is somewhere 
repletivdy (in ubi repletivo ), since He fills all in all." Of physical 
bodies, it is said that they are somewhere circumscriptively or occupa- 
tively (in ubi circumscriptivo sen occupatico*), because they oecupy_a 
space commensurate with themselves, and are circumscribed by the 
surrounding air." HOLL. (384): "But the angels are not wme- 
where repletively, because they are not everywhere, like God; nor are 
they somewhere occupatively, since they do not occupy a space com 
mensurate with the peculiarity of their spiritual nature. For 
measure depends upon quantity, and an angel is devoid of that." 

[10] HOLL. (384): "Wonderful is the agility and velocity of 
angels, so that without local motion, which is a quality of bodies, 
and thus also without a succession of parts, which they do not 
have, they are able to change the where of their presence with ex 
treme celerity. Yet it does not appear that angels are entirely de- 

/ _-, ff . 

void of motion, since they are sometimes here and sometimes 
elsewhere. And, although the motion of angels is extremely rapid, 
yet it is not instantaneous, because space, in which they move, is 
extended and continuous, and cannot be traversed by any creature 
in an instant. 

[11] That the knowledge of angels is great and superior to that 
of all men, because joined with the knowledge of the Son of God; 
and yet that it is not infinite, since they are ignorant of the day of 
judgment," is deduced from 2 Sam. 14: 20; Mark 13: 32. In 
imitation of the Scholastics, some of the Dogmaticians attempt 
more particularly to describe the kind and the measure of the 
knowledge possessed by the angels. Thus QUEN. (I, 445): "The 
angels do not know all things at once by one intellection, but as 
distinct and through different conceptions; not merely by a simple 
apprehension, but also by synthesis and analysis; and also by 
reasoning and inferring one thing from another. They know God, 
but they do not comprehend Him, because of the infinity of the 
divine essence, and the finitude of Uie angelic intellect. (En. 
(255, 256): " They know God only abstractively, i e., a posteriori, 
and from created things : yet more perfectly than our abstractive 
knowledge.) "They know the thoughts of men, not a priori and 
distinctly, but a posteriori and confusedly, by signs, effects, and 
mental conditions. As to future contingencies, they can infer future 
events by the consideration of causes^ and this with the greatest 
quickness, yet only with probability and in the main." Tin 
knowledge of angels is described as " a natural knowledge, which 
is common to both good and evil angels on account of their iden 
tity of nature; a revealed knowledge, which was common to them 
all before the fall of some of them; a beatific knowledge, which be 
longs only to the angels that are confirmed in that which is good. 
(BR. (255).) Many of the Dogmaticians, however, refrain from 
all specific distinctions in regard to the kind and the degree of this 
knowledge. GRH. (IV, 22): "For what can we, mere worms 
creeping upon the earth, assert, in this darkness of our mind, con 
cerning the understanding of the celestial spirits, when we cannot 
so much as exactly comprehend our own understanding ? It is 
better therefore to render devout thanks to God for the ministry of 
angels, which He daily grants us, than curiously to scrutinize 
beyond the limits of the Word these mysteries and unrevealed 

[12] HOLL. (382): "The will accompanies the intellect; liberty 
accompanies the will. The angelic will is free, as well with respect 
to immanent acts, of choosing or refusing this or that object, as 

udF 4~t/s^ 


with respect to different external effects, while it freely does now 
this, now that." 

[13] HOLL. (382): The power of angels is great, but finite. 
(1) It is great, for they are called mighty in strength [R. V.] 
Ps. 1U3: 20; strong men armed, Luke 11: 21. They are able (a) 
to move bodies by transferring them from place to place. Matt. 4: 
~57~8; Acts 8:~39; (6) to destroy bodies, 2 Kings 19: 35; (c) to 
assume bodies and to join them, not essentially indeed or person 
ally, but accidentally, to themselves, and to guide them as a 
helmsman guides a ship; (d) to speak with God, with angels, and 
with men. They speak wtih God, by directing their thoughts to 
God, while they adore and praise Him; they speak with angels, 
freely impressing upon them intelligible conceptions; they speak 
-o/,/, men, 1>\ means of an audible and distinct sound formed in the 
air in imitation of the human voice." (QuEN., I, 446: "That 
speaking is done by means of a sound formed in the assumed 
bodies. But he prudently adds : Here to be willing not to 
know, what the best Master does not wish to teach, is learned 
ignorance. " ) " ( 2 ) It is finite; angelic power is not infinite. For, 
since infinite power is peculiar to the Creator, it is not communi 
cable to a mere creature. Whence it happens that angels are not 
able < " i t<> ereatej (/;) t<> beget: ( ) to change substances; dl) to 
perform true miracles, Ps. 72: 18; (e) to cure all diseases; (/) to 
Braise the dead.^ 

[14] QUEN. (I, 446): " As to their original state, all angels were 
in the beginning created by God equally righteous, good and holy, 
to glorify God and render Him a holy service. " 

This is proved: (a) By the general statement appended to the 
narrative of the creation, G^n. 1: 31. (i) From John 8: 44. (c) 
From Jude 6, where the fall of the angels is described both nega 
tively and affirmatively, (rf) From 2 Pj?t. 2:4." 

HOLL. (385): "The grace spoken of. bestowed (1) on .the part 
of the intellect, a certain habitual intellectual light or concreated 
knowledge for the recognition of God and of His will; (2) an 
habitual holiness of the will, by which the angels were able in the 
state of probation to begin and to end all their actions conformably 
to the eternal law of God." 

NOTE. It is further remarked that they were created in great 
numbers; how great these were is not l^y^ym fry us. QUEN. (I, 
446): "Because the angels were not to be multiplied as men by 
procreation, but were created at once by God, so there was a cer 
tain number of them from the beginning, which, as it was not in 
creased in the course of time, nor will be increased, so also it will 

^ /. &A 


never be diminished. But how great that number is the Scriptures 
do not teach, and there is nothing further revealed concerning it 
to us than that it is great, Dan. 7: 10; Matt. 25: 31; Heb. 12: 22." 

[15] HOLL. (385): Perfect righteousness was concreated with 
the anftelfl, but it was- not inamissible or incapable of being lost. 
For the will of the angels in the state of grace was not fully fixed 
upon perpetually loving and choosing the good; but God granted 
to them liberty of will and a concreated propensity towards the 
good, so that there was in them, not a very near, but a very re 
mote capacity to sin, consisting in the negation both of impecca 
bility and of the inamissibility of the concreated blessings." 

QUEN. (I, 447): "The fall of certain angels did not occur in 
consequence of any concreated inclination or proclivity to evil, but^ 
through the abuse of internal liberty, t. g. t certain angels fell 
while no intrinsic principle was inclining or determining them to 
a fall, while no external motive for falling was constraining or 
necessitating them ; but because they had not yet been confirmed 
in the Good, and were indifferent to good and evil, they abused 
their liberty, and with perfect freedom left their own place." 

N. B. The whole context shows that QUEN. S phrase, "indif 
ferent to good and evil," is not meant to express indecision in re 
gard to good or evil, but only the capacity to choose the one as well 
as the other; and that the phrase is selected with special reference 
to the subsequent condition in which the good angels are described 
as confirmed in that which is good. 

[16] HOLL. (384): "The original state is the state of grace, 
which all the angels possessed in the original creation through the 
grace of the omnipotent Creator, and in which they were created 
equally wiae ana holy, and were placed upon the icay to eternal 
happiness." CAL. (IV, 57): "Before they were confirmed in the 
Good, they were on the way to happiness; but they had not yet 
reached the goal itself, namely, happiness." 

[17] QUEN. (I, 447): "With regard to their subsequent condi 
tion, some of the angefe continued in their concreated goodness, 
truth, and holineM, and were confirmed in it by God; but other^, 
by sinning through their own free will, fell away from their 
Creator. And hence arose the distinction betw r een the good and 
the evil angels." 

The condition of the good angels, after that period, is called the 
state of glory, and that of the evil angels the state of misery. 
HOLL. (384): " The state of glory is that in which the angels whc?. 
continued in concreated wisdom and holiness, having been ad 
mitted to the unobscured ^vision of God, perpetually enjoy His 



boundless goodness. Matt. 18: 10; Ps. 16: 11. The state of misery 
(2 et. 2: 4) is the most lamentable condition of those angels who 
| of. their own accord fell away from God. 

[18] HOLL. (386): "The good angels are those who continued 
in concreated true wisdom and holiness, and are so illumined by 
God with the light of glory and so confirmed in the Good that, free 
from the danger of sinning, they clearly behold God and perpetu 
ally enjoy His goodness." QUEN. (I, 447) : " They are called good 
angels, not so much on account of their entitative, metaphysical, or 
transcendental goodness, which belongs to all angels, even the evil 
(for, in as far as they have existence, in so far also they are good); 
nor only on account of their concreated good habit, for in this re- 
^ spcct also they were just like the evil angels, who also equally had 
the same at first; but also on account of their good deeds, or 
their obedience yielded to God and their perseverance in the 
Good, and, finally, on account of their confirmation in the Gocd. 
The formal reason, therefore, why they are denominated good 
angels is, because they persevered in the truth and goodness in 
vvhii !. i hey I KIM been created, ami an- IH>\V so confirmed in it that 
they never will either wish or be able to fall from it." 

[19] Three things, therefore, according to CAL. (IV, 55), are to 
be predicated of the good angels: "(1) Persistence and continuance 
in concreated truth and holiness^ (2) Divine confirmation in the Good, 
which signifies an eternal, immutable persistence in the blessings 
bestowed in creation, strength in the Good, or the gift of absolute 
perseverance, and the great increase of those blessings. Hence 
arises impeccability." QUEN. (I, 448): " Good angels are so con 
firmed in the Good that, as before they were only able not to sin, 
now they are altogether unable to sin. Matt. 18: 10; 6: 10; 1 Tim. 
5: 21; Luke 20: 36; Gal. 1: 8." HOLL. (386): "In" the tate of 
the way [when upon trial] the angels were abk not to sin, i. e., there 
was not in them a very ready capacity or propensity to sin, yet 
^ there was in them a remote capacity to come short of their duty. 
In the state of glory the angels are not able to sin, i. e. , there is in 
them neither a near nor a remote capacity for coming short, but a 
\ sinlessness (aw^a/jr^/a) ; their impeccability is immutable and their 
holiness inamissible. (3) The eternal judgment of God, which prop 
erly is the state of glory, for which ultimately, or as a final goal, Itll 
the angels had been created. For they were all originally created 
J alike. But when some fell away from God and deprived themselves 
^ .of that glory, forsaking their own habitation (Jude 6), the rest, 
who remained in the truth, alone enjoyed the beatific vision of God, 
or the state of eternal happiness, who always behold the face of God 


JL/ />? . ^/-. 

// t 


the Father in heaven, Matt. 18: 10, and are thus called angels of 
light, 2 Cor. 11: 14; elect angels, 1 Tim. 5: 21; whence also holy 
men who are to be in the state of glory are called laa-yy^oL, equal to 
the angels. Luke 20: 36." The Dogmaticians usually represent 
the confirmation in the Good as a consequence of the reception.Jntp 
the state of glory. BR. (269): "After they (the good angels) had 
steadfastly exhibited to God their obedience in the state of proba 
tion, while other angels had fallen away, it pleased God to fill them 
with the light of glory, so that they were able clearly and intui 
tively to recognize God (for this is to see the face of the heavenly 
Father). But this vision of God was followed by a most intense 
love, by which the will of the angels cleaves to God in such a man 
ner that it cannot be turned away from Him. And thus was 
effected their confirmation in the Good, or the determination of 
their will towards the Good; so that, whatsoever they do, they do 
with reference to God as the infinitely perfect and perfectly known 
Good, without any blemish, without any defect." 

HOLL. (386): "He who clearly beholds God, the chief Good, 
cannot but burn with perpetual love towards Him, for he beholds 
nothing in Him but what is good and to be loved; but he who per 
petually loves God cannot sin." Id.: "The good angels, then, 
are confirmed in the Good when the light of glory is infused into 
them by God, so that their confirmation in the Good is practically 
nothing else than the infusion of the light of glory, in which they 
intuitively recognize God." That the angels, after having once 
been admitted into the state of glory^ cannot possibly sin, j_s in 
ferred principally Irom Liike 20: 36. QUEN. (I, 448): "Those 
who are to be blessed in eternal life are called equal unto the 
angels. Now, we are sure we shall never lose that celestial felicity ; 
therefore, much more are the angels thus assured, to whom we shall 
be like." QUEN. (I, 448) appears to regard the confirmation in the 
Good not so much a consequence of the enjoyment of God, as rather 
to be assumed at once along with it: "The angels always behold 
the face of the Father in heaven, which beatific vision of God pre 
supposes the confirmation in the Good, excludes all sin, and intro 
duces impeccability, i. e. . it makes angels and men happtf, confirmed 
in the Good and impeccable. 

This introduction to the statejrf jglory is described, indeed, as^ji 
reward which the good angels receive from Godj but yet only as 
one that proceeded frornjhe free grace of God; at the same time it 
is described as having been determined upon from eternity, but not 
by an absolute decree. 

HOLL. (387) : " The glory of the angels who are confirmed in the 


Good is to be attributed not to an absolute divine decree, nor to the 
merit of Christ, nor to angelic merit, but to the most liberal good 
ness of God, who remunerates the persevering obedience of the 
angels far beyond their desert. 

[20] QUEN. (I, 448) : " It is to be observed in general, that now, 
in consequence of and after this confirmation, there are greater ex 
cellences and perfections in angels than before the confirmation. 

HOLL. (388): "The angels acquired through the gift of confir 
mation more excellent knowledge, more perfect holiness, more per 
fect freedom, greater power, more complete concord." 

[21] QUEN. (I, 448): "As to the intellect of the angels, it shines 
no doubt with more illustrious radiance, since they have reached 
the goal and are enjoying the beatific vision of God, in which there 
is fulness of joy, Ps. 16: 11; and hence they are called angels of 
light, on account of the greater light of knowledge, 2 Cor. 11: 14." 
But here also the limitation is appended: "Although the intel 
lectual power of the good angels is very great, it is nevertheless 
finite (Mark 13: 32; 1 Pet. 1: 12), and circumscribed within its 
own limits. Their intellection is capable of grasping very much 
(multiscia) but it is not omniscient; neither is it able to anticipate 
future events, nor has it an a priori consciousness of the recesses of 
the^ heart or of human thoughts. ? 

[22] CAL. (IV, 60 )? " (!) Holiness, not only that by which they 
were marked as holy when in the state of grace; but being more 
perfect now in holiness, they are confirmed in the Good and estab 
lished in the state of glory. From the more perfect knowledge of 
God there has resulted a more perfect love of God, and so also a 
more perfect holiness; and, since they are always (&a TTOVT^) illu 
minated by the most glorious light of the knowledge and holiness 
of God, Matt. 18: 10; 2 Cor. 11: 14, they rejoice in perfect holiness 
as that of the finally blessed. . . . But thi* holiness of theirs is not 
essential; for God alone is essentially holy; but fa is accidental, because 
they were able to lose it. Job 4 : 18. " (2) QUEN. (I, 449) : " This 
confirmation in their original state did not deprive the good angels 
of their freedom, nor did they cease for this reason to have a free 
will; but they rather attained in this way to greater freedom. For 
they_haye^a) freedom from compulsion, as they do not perform 
good works compulsorily, but freely and of their own accord. 
They praise God and serve Him freely, not by compulsion, al 
though they are not able not to praise Him and do His will; (6) 
freedom of exercise, which is sometimes called freedom of contra 
diction, which signifies that when any one has an object proposed 
to him, he can choose it or not choose it, can act or not act. The 

/ / 6 t-or ec^e*^-- *<3**^. ~. t*~ ^-! *A +~* f**- ?+** t*<-jpr-fraf 


(7 / 

good angels have also (g) the freedom of a certain specification; 
that, namely, which consists in freely choosing or not choosing be 
tween this or that good thing in particular. For, although the- 
freedom of specification, which is called also the freedom of con 
trariety, implies indifference as to one of two opposite things, a 
good and an evil, yet the good angels do not have freedom as to 
contrary acts, so as to be able to do good and evil, but they are able 
to will and to do only good, and thus the freedom of contrariety 
does not belong to good angels; nevertheless they have the freedom 
of contradiction, by which although they necessarily choose the 
good, as to the quality of the act, yet they are able freely to choose 
this good, and not to choose another good, to do this good and not 
to do another good. Yea, the freedom, not to be able to sin, not 
to be able to refrain from doing good, is the very highest kind r 
which very highest grade of freedom God, the most free of all,, 

[23] QUEN. (I, 449): "The power of the good angels is very 
great. For, though they were endowed with great strength at their 
creation, they have acquired still more, since they have been ad 
vanced into the state of glory, and by it are enabled to overcome- 
the power of the devils. Hence they are called those that excel! 
in strength. P& 103: 20." But here also the limitation: "Al 
though the power of the good angels is great, it is yet finite and 
subordinate and subject to the divine power and will." 

[24] AP. CONF., p. 224, 8. Comp. also p. 117. HOLL. (390): 
The holy angels perform their works and duties by standing before- 
God (with a most joyful psalmody (v*z?.//6>rf/g) they sing the praises 
of God; with the most humble worship (/arpc/a) they revere and 
adore God; with the most prompt service (/^roipy/a) they execute 

s. *> 

the will of God), by assisting godly men, and by resisting devils 
and wicked men." 

More specifically BR. (272) (in imitation of the earliest Dogma- 
ticians, viz., CHMN. , GRH.): "The good angels perform various 
functions in their happy life, some of which pertain to their own 
happiness (for their happiness does not consist in idleness, luit in 
part itself signifies a certain activity (tvkpytia) \ in part, besides, ad 
mits various functions, to be performed by those who are happy) ;. 
others are ministerial, by which the angels serve God and Christ, 
the God-man (Heb. 1: 6; Matt. 4: 11), and promote human salva 
tion/ 1 Id. (274) : " The functions of the latter kind have respect 
partly to individual godly men, partly to guardianship of the hier 
archical estates and the promotion of their advantage. The angels 
minister to godly individuals when they sustain them in the begin- 


s . Y 



ning of life and in infancy (Matt. 18: 10) ; when they render service 
to those of maturer years in any honest calling (Ps. 34: 7; 91: 11, 
12; Matt. 1: 19, 20; 2: 13, 19; Acts 10: 3, 7; RevT 1: 1; 22: 6, 16; 
Dan. 6: 22; Acts 12: 7; 5: 18, 19; Luke 1: 13, 30, etc.); and, 
* finally, when they are present with the dying, Luke 16: 22." 
-J AP. CONF. Art. xxi, 8: ... * We freely grant that the angels 
> pray for us. For we have the testimony of Zech. 1 : 12, where the 
J angel prays, Lord of hosts, how long wilt thou not have mercy 
M u on Jerusalem, etc.? 

$ \ BR. (276): "It belongs to the office of the angels, with reference 
^\\ to the ecclesiastical estate, to promote the ministry of the Word; and 
& especially, to this end, they were present as servants at the pro- 
^J \ mulgation of the Mosaic Law ( Deut. 33: 2; Gal. 3: 19); they an- 
K o nounced the incarnation of Christ (Luke 1: 26; 2:9); they resisted 
^s >^ ne introduction of idolatry into the Church ( 9); and likewise 
\ j are present in sacred assemblies (1 Cor. 11: 10; 1 Tim. 5: 21)." 
<j ^ (Ib. ): li The political estate the angels serve by preventing the 
| bonds of the government from being sundered (Dan. 10: 13), by 
assisting and defending the magistracy and ite officers (Dan. 6: 
22), by warding off dangers and destroying wicked enemies (2 > 
Kings 19: 35; Is. 37: 36)." 

Id. (277): * The domestic estate they serve by promoting the mar 
riage of the godly (Gen. 24: 7), by keeping watch over the house 
hold^ Job 1: 10; Ps. 34: 7), by guarding the pledges of domestic 
^love, the children (Matt. 18: 10)." 

\ ( Ib. ) : ( Finally, there will be a special duty c)f_the angelSj which 
1 they will perform on the last day, when they will accompany Christ C^ 
^coming to judgment, and announce His arrival with the sound of | 

trumpets- < M.Jt. 25:31; 1 Thess. I: 1C)). They will collect human 
^beings from all parts of the world (Matt. 24: 31; Mark 13: 27), and, 
will separate the godly from the wicked (Matt. 13: 41); they will 
place the former at the right hand of Christ (Matt. 25: 43), taking 
up to meet Him in the air (1 Thess. 4: 17), and the latter, 
\placed at the left hand of the Judge (Matt. 25: 33), they will then^ 
{.quickly cast into hell (Matt, 13: 42, 50)." 

\ The Dogmaticians acknowledge that they have no definite answery 
>| Y) ^to the question, whether every one have his own so-called guardian ^ 
^j angel. BR. (274): "This is certain, that the guardianship of any ? 
N man is not in such a way assigned to a particular angel that he is v 
^ deprived of the aid of the rest. But it still may be asserted with 
probability, that one angel is appointed for the protection of ea< 
godly person, and that in extraordinary cases many angels are sent 
.to the help of single individuals." ^. *- /^ 




[25] AP. CONF. P. II, Art. II: "Although the angels in heaven 
pray for us, ... yet it does not hence follow that they are to be 
invoked, adored, etc., by us." BR. (278): " On account of these 
"perfections which we discover the angels to possess, and because 
they favor and assist us very greatly, it is also becoming that we 
praise and love them, and take heed lest we offend them by evil 
actions. But it is not becoming in us to direct our prayers to the 
angels. For that is either impious and idolatrous (namely, if we ad 
dress religious prayers to them with the belief that they can bestow 

jf upon us spiritual gifts), or it is at least useless and ill-advised." . 
x? HOLL. (392): "Angels are not to be religiously adored or in 
voked" ^ 
[26] HOLL. (392): l There is no doubt as to the existence of a 

^ certain order among the good angels, but what or what manner cj 
angelic order that is, we think no one can know in this life. Proof: 

O (a) From the general rule, according to which God wishes every 
thing in the Church Militant to be done decently and in order, 

v 1 Cor. 14 : 40. There is no doubt, therefore, that there is a certain >^ 

^ order among the blessed angels, and that the more perfect as the 
$ Church Triumphant is more splendid than the Church Militant. N* 

u (6) From the different designations of the celestial spirits, Enh. 1: 
21; Col. 1: 16; 1 Thess. 4: 16, and Ju^le 9. The different names 
imply a distinction among the angels, (c) From analogy. There 
is an order among the wicked angels; therefore also among the 

good. The former is proved by Luke 11: 15, where Beelzebub is 
called the chief of devils, an 
of the devil and his angels. " 

called the chief of devils, and Matt, 25: 41, where mention is made v| 

uie uevii anu ms aiigeis. i 

[27] QUEN. (I, 450): "Angels are called evil, not because of /} 
their essence, for in respect to their essence they are good, and were 
created along with the rest of the angels in truth, holiness, and 
righteousness; but (1) in respect to their evil conduct, viz., their 
malicious defection and apostasy from God; (2) in respect to the ^, 
\ habitual wickedness, or the horrible depravity of their nature, 
^<which was consequent upon that conduct; (3) in respect to their J^ 
erseverance and persistence in incorrigible wickedness; and (4) ^ 
account of their evil doings^ for they perpetrate only evil. | 

[28] QUEN. (I, 452): It does not appear what exactly was the ^ / 
first sin of the evil angels. The temptation, however, with which . 
Satan attacked and overcame our first parents, Gen. 3: 5, and his ^ 
character and his perpetual effort to transfer the glory of God to <* 
himself, Matt. 4: 9 [1 Tim. 3: 6], render probable the opinion of > 
those who think that it was an affected resemblance to the Deity 

( deiformitas ) or an affectation of superior pre-eminence ( vrrepoxw ) . 




Z. / 

[29] QtJEN. (I, 452): "The_generic form of the diabolical Ml 
consisted in the free and spontaneous turning away from God and 
the rule of right. For they were able to persevere in truth and 
concreated holiness and not fall away from it; they were able by 
the grace of creation to keep the rule of right; of their own accord, 
therefore, and freely they sinned, by the abuse of the freedom that ] 
was bestowed upon them. For they did not sin through any de- W 
feet or impotence of nature, but from pure malice and contumacy, ^ 
and by the spontaneous abuse of the will conferred upon them." v> 

[30] QUEN. (I, 452): * Those who fell were individual angels, <; 
whose number is not mentioned in the Scriptures; that they were $ 
many, however, we infer from the multitude of demons, Ma,rk 5: | 
9;, Luke 8: 30."^-y> 

Id. (1,453): (t In what order the wicked angels sinned, whethervj 
all at once, whether one after another, or whether first one fell and S 
by his example and persuasion induced others to apostasy and the 1 
fall, concerning this the Scholastics dispute, but art/? -ypa^ } with no , 
scriptural ground for their opinions." 

HOLL. (3 ( .M): " Ij is probable that the wicked angels fell under v 
yT^ the guidance of a certain leader or chief, whom the Scriptures call 
Satan and the devil, John 8: 44; Luke 111 15, who by his examp 
or persuasion drew many angels into the fellowship of his crime. 
Rev. 12: 4." 

As to the time of the fall: HOLL. (Ib.): "They fell, not within v 

la- v 


the six days of creation, hut after they were ended (den. 1: 31); 
before the fall of our first parents, in the second week of the founda 
tion of the world, but upon what day it is uncertain." 

[31] BR (280): "The crime having been committed, all those s 
V angels lost the grace that had been concreated with them, and so \ \ 
vj fell into the most horrible misery without hope of restoration." N> 
CAL. (IV, 318): "The punishment of the wicked angels is I 
\ partly the eternal desertion of God, whence they can never be con-^J j 
^ \ ^ verted; partly, rejection to mfernaTtormente to be endured forever. * 
X ^ HOLL (403) more specifically distinguishes the punishment of 

s^ ]! T= loss from the punishment of the senses: The punishment of loss, 
which is also designated as privative, is the most lamentable cast 
ing away of grace and glory. The punishment of sense consists of 
the positive torments which the demons Tiave been keenly endur 
ing ever since the fall, and the still greater ones which they will 
undergo on the day of final judgment. (2 et. 2:4; Jude 6.)" \^ 
BR. (288): "The punishments which are inflicted upon the 
wicked angels will be eternal. Matt 25: 41-46; Mark 9Y 43." 
To the question, Why may not the wicked angels be restored 

3t - 


to favor?" GRH. (IV, 34) answers: "It is better to proclaim) 
the wonderful philanthropy and mercy of the Son of God towards) 
the fallen race of man, by which on our account and for our salva-| 
tion He descended from heaven and became man, not taking on 
Him the nature of angels but the seed of Abraham (Heb. 2: 16), 
than to scrutinize beyond due limits the causes of that most just 
judgment, by which God delivered the angels who had fallen away , 
from Him to be cast in chains of darkness into hell, to be reserved 
for judgment." The reason for their eternal rejection is usually 
found in the greatness of their crime. HOLL. (398) indicates the 
atrocity of their crime: "(o) From the person offended, who is 
(lo<l, the most kind ;in<l mighty Creator of the angels. (/;) From 
the helps, by the aid of which they were able to turn aside the evil. 
For the intellect of the angels was resplendent with an extraordinary 
light of knowledge, and their will was distinguished by perfect holi 
ness. (c) From the mode of sinning. For the angels sinned, not 
through infirmity or inadvertence, but in the full possession of 
their intellect, with deliberate design and the voluntary abuse of 
their free will, no one instigating them. 

[32] QUEN. (I, 454): "The evil angels did not lose, through 
their fall, their natural knowledge, or that which they had by the 
light of nature; for they know God and other supernatural things 
after a certain manner. But that knowledge of supernatural things 
is joined, 1, with great hatred and murmuring against God; 2, 
"with jealousy, envy, and rage against good angels, godly rnen and 
saints in heaven; 3, with ignorance, doubt, error, and forgetfuhiess^ 
Matt. 4V 6; John 13: 2; 1 Cor. 2:8. Yet they have altogether loet 
the^ knowledge derived from the light of grace^ HOLL. (399): 
"The evil angels know God, but they dreadfully shudder at this 
divine knowledge." BR. (280): " Their intellect is deprived, not 
only of the light of grace, but also of the light of glory; and, being 
fixed upon the contemplation of the divine wrath and their own 
misery, it is as it were blunted, and wants a sound judgment con 
cerning the doing of that which is good. (Besides, the corruption 
of the diabolic intellect can be shown from the fact that Satan so 
studiously sought to accomplish the death of Christ, not thinking 
that he was thereby bringing the greatest adversity upon himself. 
But the natural knowledge that remains in the wicked angels adds 
no happiness to them, rejected as they are by God.)" Their fur 
ther gifts are thus described, HOLL. (399): Their will, inclined to 
evil, does not rejoice in that liberty which implies indifference to 
good or evil, or to many things that are good, but their freedom is 
exercised with reference to particular evils. Their pmver is, indeed, 



more than human, but is restrained by the divine power, so that 
without the permission of God they can accomplish nothing." 
QUEN. (I, 454): "From divine revelation they sometimes certainly 
know future contingencies, Job 1: 12; 2: 6; 1 Kings 22: 22. And 
some things they know with a measure of probability by their nat 
ural sagacity." 

[33] HOLL. (400): "The doings of the wicked angels are of 
various kinds, but they are all directed to the injury of the divine 
glory (Re.v. 12: 7), and to the temporal as well as eternal ruin of 
individual men, and of the ecclesiastical estates." Specificallyx 
(403): "The evil demons are assiduously plotting to disturb, ^ C 
^verturn, and totally jdestroy__the ecclesiastical estate (by scattering^. _ 
heresies, Matt. 13: 27 and 28; by hindering" the efforts of godly u I 
ministers of the Church, 1 Thess. 2: 18; by averting the minds of 
hearers from the meditation and practice of the divine Word, Luke 
v 8: 12; by exciting persecutions against the kingdom of Christ, Rev. 
12: 7), the political estate (1 Kings 22: 21; 1 Chron. 22: 1), andl^e 
$ domestic estate (by alienating the minds of married persons, as the 
^ devil was a murderer from the beginning, who delighted in sowing 
contentions, John 8: 44; by lying in wait for the children and pos- 
^ sessions of parents, Job 1: 11-19)." 

Among the evils that are inflicted upon individual persons by 
the evil spirits is to be especially recko ried corporeal "ahd~sl:>rritual 
^ P?f. Sessio "; Tlle 8 eneral description of this we cite from QUEN." (T, Vo 

456): "It is an action of the devil, by which, through the pcrmis- 
, sion of God, he instigates men to sin, and occupies and torments jp 
their bodies, that they may throw away their eternal salvation. \S\ 
Through the former, viz. , the instigation to sin, there originates the >kj 
Y -spiritual possession; through the latter, viz., his occupation of human y^ 
V bodies, there originates the corporeal possession. The former is meant < I 
^ j when it is said that the devil possesses and fills the~minds and ^ 

hearts of the wicked, enters into them, and works in them, ActsT: ^ 
3; Luke 22: 3; John 13: 2; 2 Thess. 2: 9; Eph. 2: 2. The_laUer is J 
meant when the devil immediately and locally exists and operates^ 
^n a body, and controls it for the time being. Matt. 4: 24; 8: 16 i 
and 28; Mark 7: 25; 9: 17] Matt. 12:22; 15:22; Luke 4: 33; "Acts <1 
8:7; 19: 13." r 

[34] BR. : ^Meanwhile God Himself uses the ministry of evil ^ 
spirits for chastening the godly in this world (e. g., Job), and for <s 
punishing the wicked, as well in life (Ps. 78: 49) as after death". \ 
(Matt. 18: 34.)" 





23. General Statement. 

N the first part we treated of God in general, and of the 
works that He has made ; we now proceed to treat of Man, 
for whose sake the world was made, and forjg^ose^emEtion 
Christ appeared. Here we are to describe his moral condition, 
i, e., the condition in which he now is, and because of which 
he needs redemption. [1] Inasmuch, however, as his present 
moral condition cannot be described without first explaining 
how it came to be, since it is no longer the original condition 
in which he was created, the description of the moral condi- 
tion in which man now is must be preceded by the description 
of his original condition. [2] 

The second part, therefore, falls into two divisions : I. THE 


24. State of Integrity Defined. 

state of integrity is the original condition of man, 
created after the image of God, in goodness and recti 
tude." QUEN. (II, 2.) The first condition of man is thus de- 
^n~ated, because in it he was entirely uninjured and incor- 
rupt in all his endowments, powers, and attributes. [3] This 

(217) " 


condition is more specifically described by the expression, 
" Ae image o/ G Y od m w/iic^ wan was created," Gen. 1: 26, 27 ; 
5: 1 ; for man is distinguished from all other creatures ill 
this, that he was made after the image of God. [4] This ex 
pression denotes, in general, a resemblance to God, which has 
its ground in this, that God took Himself, so to speak, as a 
pattern and archetype according to which He created man. 
[5] The passages, Col. 3: 10 and Eoh. 4: 24, teach in what 
particulars that resemblance to God consists, by which man s 
original condition is described. [6] In these, the apostle 
states that mankind, whom he presupposes to have lost the 
image of God, must be renewed again in the same ; and, inas 
much as he describes the new condition as that in which man 
kind are renewed by the power of the Holy Ghost, in true 
righteousness and holiness, we see that he means by the image 
of God (Gen. 1 and 5) the peculiar spiritual and moral perfec 
tion of man^ original condition. f71 QUEN. (II, 9): "The 
image of God is a natural perfection, consisting in an entire 
conformity with the wisdom, justice, immortality, and majesty 
of God, which was divinely concreated in the first man, in 
order that he might perfectly know, love, and glorify God, 
his Creator." [8] Accordingly, man in his original condition 
possessed : 

(1) Wisdom and the power to understand perfectly, accord 
ing to the measure of his necessities, things divine, human and 
natural. [9] 

(2) Holiness and freedom of the will, according to which 
man loved God and that which is good, and possessed the 
power to live, in all respects, in conformity with the will of 
God. [10] 

(3) Purity of the natural affections, and the perfect harmony 
<>f_alj_his powers and impulses, fill HOLL. (470): " The per 
fections constituting the image of God were an intellect ex 
celling in knowledge, perfect holiness and freedom of the will, 
absolute purity of the sensuous appetites, and the most har 
monious agreement of the affections with the decision of the 
intellect and guidance of the will, in conformity with the wis 
dom, holiness, and purity of God, as far as was consistent with 
the capacity of the first man." 

~*< <*~~* /->~* *~~^ ~-~ -j, 


These spiritual and moral excellences, thus described, are 
the true reason why man is called the image of God. [12] 
They are also summed up in the expression " original right 
eousness/ [13] With these there are yet connected, as a 
natural consequence from them, corporeal excellences, and a 
peculiarly exalted position in relation to the external world, 
[14] viz., (a) corporeal impassibility and immortality, for 
neither suffering nor death could touch man thus spiritually 
and morally endowed; and (6) external dominion over the 
other animals (Gen. 1: 26-28), for in this also does the exalted 
dignity of the likeness to God manifest itself. HOLL. (475) : 
" The less principal perfections included in the image of God, 
are the immunity of body, infected with no stain of sin, from 
passions, its immortality, and complete control over sublunary 
creatures, especially beasts." [15] Man, thus created, could 
not but rejoice in unalloyed happiness, to which also his resi 
dence in Paradise, " a most pleasant habitation," contributed 
its share. [16] 

All these excellences we must designate as natural to man 
in his original state, not indeed in the sense that if he lost 
them he would no longer be the same being ; but yet in this 
sense, that they were created along with him, and that they 
cannot be separated from him without making his whole con 
dition different from what it formerly was. This is expressed 
in the statement, that the image of God is a natural perfection, 
and not an external, supernatural, and supplementary gift. 
[17] This condition, with all its excellences, man would also 
have propagated to his posterity (by natural generation, Geji. 
5: 3 ; Rom. 5: 12), had he not fallen. If we inquire concern- 
ing supernatural gifts, of which man, in his original condition^ 
was a partaker, they can be more easily enumerated, viz^: 
" The supernatural favor of God, the gracious indwelling of 
the most holy Trinity, and the enjoyment and delight thence 
derivecf;" for these gifts are to be regarded, in a certain sense, 
as peculiar additions and consequences, flowing from man s 
happy and morally good condition. [18] 

[1] QUEN. (II, 1): ( The subject of Theology is man, who fell 
into misery from his original happy state, and who is to be brought 
back to God and eternal salvation. The discussion here is not of 

*.- 3 



man as to his essence, and as he is a creature, . . . but as he i& 
such or such a creature; and in regard to his date, which before the 
Fall was innocent and most happy, but after the Fall corrupt and 
most miserable. 

[2] HOLL. (461): "Concerning the Fall of man, the condition 
from which (terminus a quo} as well as the condition into which he 
fell (terminus ad quern) is to be considered. The condition from 
which he fell, is the state of innocence or integrity. The misery of 
fallen man cannot be accurately measured, unless the happiness 
which preceded it, and of which man, alienated from God, de 
prived himself, can be exactly estimated. For the loss of any 
thing is understood from previous possession of it, and the magni 
tude of an evil is estimated by the good which has been lost." 
The various conditions of man, CAL. (IV, 385) enumerates in the 
following order: "The states of man, which come to be considered 
in Theology, are diverse. One before the Fall, which is called the 
state o/ innocence ; one after the Fall, which again is divided into a 
state of sin without grace, which they call a date of sin or corruption, 
and a state of sin under grace, through a gracious renovation com 
menced in this life, and to be completed in the next: whence the 
date of grace in this life is called the state of renovation, to which the 
state of glory succeeds in another life. . . . Moreover, although 
(Soli desires the renovation >t all men, ami the Sei-i|ttuivs and 
Theology have been directed to this point, yet many are not re 
newed, and these, consequently, after this life, are compelled to 
undergo another state, viz., that of eternal condemnation. Thus, 
if all the conditions of man are to be regarded, five states may be 
assigned to him, viz., of nature innocent, corrupt, renewed, glori- 
fied, and condemned; or a- state of innocence, of misery, of grace, of 
eternal glory, and of eternal shame. The Papists err, who invent yet 
another state, which they call that of the purely natural (purorum 
naturalium), which is nothing more than a mere figment of the 
Scholastics; since, indeed, a man never did exist, nor could exist, 
with the simple negation both of innocence and grace and of sin 
and misery, who was neither just nor unjust, and who neither 
pleased nor offended God." In the topic which is under discus- 
sion by us, only the first two states are considered, for the subject 
of Theology is only "man in a_state of sin, who is to be restored 
to salvation." 

[3] CAL. (IV, 389): " It is called a state of integrity, because 
man in it was upright and uncorrupt (Eccl. 7: 29) in intellect, 
will, the corporeal affections and endowments, and in all things 
was perfect. They call it also toe state ol innocence, becauieTTTe 
innocent and holy, free from sin and pollution." 

,A^_ ^_y 7~- 


[4] BR. (289): "It is evident that there are other creatures 
which are called very good, and, though created according to a 
certain form, agreeably to the divine intellect, yet not in the image 
of God." 

[5] HOLL. (462)- "The formal requisites of an image, gener- 
ically considered, are: d) Resemblance, or agreement with the 
model or prototype; because it is the property of an image to rep 
resent that of which it is an image; but this cannot be done with 
out resemblance; (2) Origin, or the process by which the image is 
made after the model, because the image was made to imitate the 
prototype, for the sake of representing it. The difference, accord 
ing to HOLL. (Ib. ), between a vestige (ves^mm) and an image, is 
expressed in the following manner: " An image clearly represents 
that of which it is an image; a vestige obscurely points to that of 
which it is a vestige. In all creatures are seen the vestiges of divine 
power, wisdom, and goodness; but in unfallen man the image of 
God shone forth with full splendor. HOLL. (464) : HIO l is the 
archetype, like which anything is made, as is indicated by the 
prefix 3. But D^V s tne ectype in which the express resemblance 
is seen. Hence the meaning of the words: Let us make man in a 
condition which may be determined according to our perfections 
and bear our likeness. Cf. Dan. 10: 16. But in another passage, 
(Jen. 5: 3, HIE"! denotes the ectype, and D^V tne archetype, as 
the former is connected by the 3, and the latter by the 3." Yet 
BK. (290) remarks concerning this general definition of image: 
" The image of God in man ought not to be referred to all things 
which are in God; neither can it be so referred; nor is it in man in 
the same degree of perfection in which it is in God." Concerning 
the meaning of the words D pV ancl HIO"! HOLL. (463) further 
says: " In the original (Gen. i: 26) two words are employed, viz., 
D*7V image, and mO"! likeness, not that they are expressions for 
different things and that image denotes the very substance of the 
human soul and likeness its accidental perfections or attributes (as 
some of the Papists say), but that the latter may be exegetical of 
the former, and that image may be designated as most like or very sim 
ilar." [TELLER adds the following note to HOLL. (462): "An 
image, properly so called, is that in which there is seen an agree 
ment with another, from which it so derives its origin that the 
properties of the former appear in the latter. Hence there are 
three things, properly speaking, which are required in an image: 
(1) An archetype. (2) An ectype. (3) An agreement between 
the two. An agreement alone is therefore insufficient, but origin 
is especially necessary, and that in such way that express proper 
ties of the archetype are conspicuous."] 


_ - -. / v v^V -" f - "" y* *^ / /-** *-^^--^-^t^F -t^t* 


-^A-t-Ot^tA^ . 

[6] It is well known that the expression, " image of God, " is 
employed in a variety of significations, and therefore we must 
ascertain from other passages in what respect man can be said to be 
like God. In the following passages, CAL. (IV, 572) furnishes the 
proper rule according to which we can discover the resemblance 
which we are considering: " Inasmuch as the conformity of man to 
God, as an archetype, is found to be manifold, and, in respect to 
this conformity, the image of God is variously defined by different 
jjt%sons, the following rule should be particularly observed, lest we 
should here depart from the proper sense of the Scriptures: Thai 
the conformity of man to God refers to the image of God, ichich, having 
been impressed upon our first parents in creation, and having been almost 
entirely lost through transgression, / * t<> he rcxtnml />>/ imoration in thi^ 
life, and, chiefly, in blessed regeneration for the life to come." This rule 
points to the passages, Col. 3 and Eph. 4, from which we learn that 
the likeness to God, which we are here discussing, must consist of 
spiritual and moral attributes. Therefore, the image of God, 
.which is ascribed to. man in his original state, is described as 
* accidental, the accidental (mutable and amissible) perfections of 
which are conformed to the infinite perfections of God, according to 
the measure of human capacity. ; HOLL. (462). Through this 
definition the accidental image of God is distinguished (1) from the 
substantial image of God, which is Christ, according to 2 Cor. 4:4; 
Col. 1: 15; Heb. 1:3; and by which the sameness of the essence of 
the Father and the Son is pointed out. HOLL. (462): "The sub 
stantial image is the eternal Son of God, because He exhibits in 
Himself the entire essence of the Father, being distinguished from 
Him by the mode of His subsistence." (2) This definition shows 
that the advantages of man s original condition, whether of the 
body or of the soul, do not make up his being itself, but that they 
consist of attributes which are, indeed, intimately united with it, 
but yet, when they are removed, the being of man remains unal 
tered. According to the position above assumed, .CAL. proceeds: 
Whence it is clear that the conformity to God which is found in 
the substance of the soul, or of the body, does not belong to the 
image of God, which is described in the language of the Scriptures: 
because the substance of the soul, or of the body, was not destroyed by the 
Fall, neither is it restored by renovatwi." QUEN. (II, 17): "We 
must distinguish between the substance of man, or the matter itself 
of which he is composed, and that which, as if something follow 
ing, adheres most closely to the substance of man, and nevertheless, 
as to its accidents, perfects it internally; or, we must distinguish 
between nature itself and its qualities, or perfections in the quali- 

? 3 ; f 

snr-C 1~<uls*. j , --W 


ties: the image of God indicates the latter, not the former. In 
short, the image of God is not man, but in man, i. e. , it is not sub 
stantial or essential to man, but accidental. In opposition to the 
views of the followers of Flacius, who maintain that the image of 
God was the substantial form itself of the first -man, and the very 
essence of the rational soul, which was entirely lost in the fall of 

A distinction is made, also, in the "accidental" image of God 
understood generically and figuratively, or specifically and literally. 
In the former sense, the resemblance of man to God is asserted 
"on account of a certain analogy or similarity to God." (HoLL. 
(463): "The substance itself of the human soul, exhibits certain 
things that are #a or divine, and stands related to the Divinity as 
to a model. For God is a spirit, immaterial, intelligent, acting 
with a free will, etc. These predicates can, in a certain manner, 
be affirmed of the human soul. " ) In this sense, however, man 
did not lose it through the Fall, and, therefore, it can be affirmed 
of him also after the Fall, G.en. 9: 6; James 3: 9. Only in this 
latter sense, is the term employed while we treat of the state of 
integrity. QUEN (II, 17): "The image of God, specifically un-C 
derstood, is not to be sought for in those things which yet remain 
in man since the Fall, and which are truly in man un re.uvn crate. 
Because the image of God, having been lost through the disobedi 
ence of the first Adam, must be restored by a new creation, through 
the obedience of the Second Adam." Consequently, in the topic 
now under discussion, we understand by the image of God "only 
those gifts and graces granted to man in his first creation and lost 
by the Fall, i. e. , the integrity and rectitude of all the powers con- 
created with the first man. 

[7] GRH. (IV, 242): "In the following passages (Col. 3 and 
Eph. 4) the phrases after the image of God, and after God are 
synonymous. There is exhibited in these a description of the new 
man, who is called new, not by reason of a change of essence, but 
on account of new qualities, the knowledge of God, righteousness, 
and true holiness. The image of God consists in that in respect of 
which man was made after God, and is renewed after the image of God_; 
but he is renewed in respect of the knowledge of God, righteous 
ness, and holiness, etc. , and in these particulars he is made like 
God, in the image of God. Therefore, the primeval image of God 
in man consists of these things. 

[8] BR. (293): "The divine image, in the special acceptation of 
the term, implies certain accidental perfections, created in the in 
tellect and will of the first man, conformable to the perfections 

*Jf**, /L -C^^ crf~~* 
/C-JH*W " 

<^r^&< -t-i^e-t-y 


^OJ2^_ *n-Jf^C*.S . ^C T V~1**-J~e( C->c-- -7\^-^^^-^. **^~^cS -~>^/~^t-^< - X "?- fc. *^-i. AL^^^t^^-v _ 

which are in God, and bestowed upon men for the purpose of * 

directing aright, and perfecting their actions, in order that they 

may attain the ultimate end." /^ ^_^, 

GRH. (IV, 248): This is the description o| the image of God ,"&^*-*>- t 
in the first man, given in the Scriptures, namely, that it was right 
eousness and true holiness, by which are meant the highest recti- 
tude, integrity, and conformity to the divine Law, of all the powers 
of^soul and body the highest perfection, innocence, and purity of 
the whole man, which his nakedness and his dwelling in Paradise 

[9] BR. (293): ( In respect of intellect, God bestowed upon the 
first men, in imitation of Himself, as of a model, a certain wisdom, 
i. e. , a certain habitual enlightenment or perfection of intellect, so 
that they attained a high degree of knowledge in Things divine", 
human, and natural, and that which was sufficient for their 
primeval state." The proof of this, according to QUEN. (II, 5) 
appears: "(1) from Col. 3: 9, 10; (2) from the acts of Adam, 
which are: (a) an appropriate application of names, Gem. 2: 19, 
which was not only grammatical as to the nomenclature of the 
animals, but even highly logical as to the most correct definition; 
(6) his recognition of Eve, Gen. 2: 23; (c) prophecy, or a prediction 
concerning the perpetuity of the conjugal relation, Gen. 2: 24." 

The nature and extent of this wisdom are more particularly de 
nned in the following, BR. (294): "The intellect of man under 
stood the essence and will of God, so far as it was necessary to 
attain this end, viz., that the intellect might prescribe the worship 
that should be rendered to God, or so far as was essential to right 
and holy living." This wisdom is described as "of such a nature 
that it could still be increased in the course of time, and not as so 
perfect and comprehensive that it could extend to the knowledge of 
the free decrees of God, or that it implied a perfectly accurate 
knowledge of all natural things." 

QUEN. (II, 6): " ThisTlmowTedge of Adam was excellent, full, 
perfect, and such as no man since the Fall can acquire, either from 
thejyolume of Nature or from that of Scripture. When, therefore, 
the inquiry is made, whether the intellect of the apostles, after the 
reception of the Holy Ghost, was superior to that of Adam before 
the Fall the reply is: We must distinguish between the knowl 
edge of divine things and the mysteries of faith, and the perfect and 
complete knowledge of all things natural and useful to man. In refer 
ence to the former, we can believe that the apostles possessed 
greater knowledge than Adam, because, after the advent of Christ, 
these things were known more fully and distinctly than before. 





In reference to the latter, Adam excelled all men, and therefore 
also the apostles, both extensively or in compass, and intensively 
or in mode or depth of knowledge; and that too, derived, not from 
probable reason or inferences, but from the proper causes of each 
thing, and also by the tenacity and unchangeableness of his knowl 
edge. Hence it is evident that the knowledge of Adam was finite 
and limited, because he knew not the secret decrees of God, nor the 
thoughts of the heart, nor future contingencies, nor the number of 
the stars. This know It -dp :ils>. which \vas c< men-ate with Adam, 
could have been perfected more and more, and admitted of augmen 
tation, if you regard the perfection of the degree of knowledge, 
both by revelation, or a more extended knowledge of God in super 
natural things, and by his own experience and observation in 
things natural." 

HOLL. (471): "The knowledge of Adam was truly excellent, 
and sufficient for his primeval state; but it was not the intuitive 
knowledge of God. For the clear vision of God is not given on 
earth, but is promised to be given in heaven. 1 Cor. 13: 12; 1 
John 3: 2." 

[10] BE. (294): " In regard to the will, spiritual strength was 
bestowed by God upon man, or an habitual inclination and 
prompting to love God above all things, and to do all things ac 
cording to the direction of an intellect rightly illuminated; but to 
avoid what it judged should be avoided, and to govern the lower 
powers of his nature, lest they should in some way break forth 
into inordinate and sinful acts." 

QUEN. (II, 6): "The perfection of the will of the first man, 
therefore, consisted (1) in a natural inclination to that which is 
good, which altogether excluded every proximate power of erring; 
(2) in a free and unhindered volition of good, and the execution 
of that volition: and thus there was in him a holy freedom of the 
will, and a free holiness which excluded all sin. But his will was 
free in such a way that it inclined only to good, and was not prone 
to the choice of evil or the neglect of good; whatever occurred 
afterwards, happened through an unfortunate abuse of the freedom 
of the will." But holiness in the first man did not introduce 
absolute impeccability, but only a relative freedom from sin in his 

[11] HOLL. (474) : "There were in the first man the most exact 
harmony and wonderful agreement of all the higher and lower 
powers of his nature. For reason most promptly obeyed the 
divine law, the will reason, the sensuous appetite the will, the 
affections the appetite, and the members of the body the affections." 


BR. (295): "For this reason it is that our first parents, in the 
state of integrity, knew not that they were naked, neither blushed ; 
i. e., their sensuous appetites (although an object were present 
which could entice them) were not influenced, even in the least 
degree, by any inordinate affection. Gen. 2: 25." 

HOLL. (474): "There is an antithesis of the Papists and Socin- 
ians, ascribing to our first parents a concreated rebellion of the 
sensuous appetite against the judgment of sound reason." 

[12] BR. (296): " This wisdom, righteousness, and holiness of 
the first men so express the idea of the divine image, that it is 
from them only, speaking in the abstract, that man can be called 
the image of God. 

[13] The expression, " original righteousness," was the one more 
frequently employed, in the earliest systems of divinity, to point 
nut man s oriiniul condition. A p. CONK. (I. 17 i: " ( Jri^iiml 
righteousness implies not only an equable temperament of the 
bodily qualities, but also these gifts, viz., a more certain knowl-_ 
edge of God, fear of God^confidence in God, or a certain rectitiule. 
and power of attaining them.^ And this is proved by the Scrip 
tures, when they say (Gen. 1: 27) that man was made in the 
image and likeness of God, which is nothing else than this wisdom 
and righteousness embodied in man, which might apprehend God, 
and in which God might be reflected, i. e., these gifts were be 
stowed upon man, viz., the knowledge of God, the fear of God, 
confidence in God, and like blessings. Paul also (Col. 3, Eph. 4) 
shows that the image of God consists in the knowledge of God, 
righteousness, and truth." 

CHMN. (Loc. Th., I, 227): " Original righteousness was not only 
the receiving, but also the rectitude and soundness, of all the 
"powers." It consisted not only in an equable temperament of the 
body, but especially in the rectitude of the powers of the soul. It 
comprehended not only the second table of the Law, but also the 
first. Nor did it consist only in external actions, or the inferior 
powers of man. This is, in substance, all that the earliest divines 
say concerning the state of integrity. The view which has been 
given in the text belongs to a later period. 

Concerning the expression, original righteousness, CALOV. remarks 
in addition (IV, 598): " It is called righteousness, not as this virtue 
is distinguished from others (which is called particular righteousness ), 
but as general righteousness, in the common acceptation, w r hich, 
however, is here understood in a higher sense, comjyrehe/nding net 
only aU moral, but also spiritual virtues, not merely those which re 
late to the will, but those also which have respect to the intellectual 


powers; for by this term is now meant, according to the use of 
theological writers, that universal and exceedingly delightful 
agreement, av^via^ in the first man, of mind, will, and heart, with 
the intellect, will, and heart of God. Nor is this term improperly 
used; for that original perfection of nature is called righteousness, 
both in respect of its essence, because we are indeed accustomed to- 
call that righteous, which by its own nature is true, perfect, right, 
sound, and incorrupt, and also in respect of its efficiency, because 
it made man righteous in the sight of God, i. e., innocent, ac 
ceptable, and holy. Righteousness is called original, because it 
was first of all in man, and because from the beginning he pos 
sessed it after the manner of a concreated habit; also, in order that 
the righteousness of man s original and first state may be dis 
tinguished from moral, imputed, and imperfect righteousness, 
from that which is perfected in another life, and from every other 
kind whatsoever; and, finally, because it must needs be transmitted 
to posterity by natural generation, inasmuch as in a state of inno 
cence men would obtain this natural perfection with their origin r 
just as now, in a state of sin, original sin is propagated, and from 
that very propagation is called original." CALOV. (IV, 597) de_- 
fines original righteousness to be ( a habit of wisdom created in the 
mind, and of perfect holiness and purity in the natural desires and 
heart, in virtue of which our first parents, by natural illumination, 
knew the truth, even that which was spiritual, without error am} 
doubt, and were freely inclined, by natural propensity, to that 
which is good, and promptly, without any struggle of internal 
affections, accomplished what they wished/ 

[14] Many divines include these excellences in their definition 
of image ; yet they make a distinction between the image partly 
received (^f/j6>f), which denotes knowledge and original righteous 
ness, and the image wholly received (ohn^ ) which embraces all things 
that complete the image of God." The excellences of the first 
class they call the principal perfections, whose seat is the soul ; 
those of the second class are called the less principal, whose seat is 
the body." The latter class QUEN. (II, 7) divides into those which 
are within man and those which are without him. If these excellences 
are included in the definition of the image of God, then the follow 
ing is of value in reference to the difference between the image of 
God and original righteousness, QUEN. (II, 3): The image of God 
and original righteousness differ as the whole and a part. The_ 
image of God includes as well the principal as the secondary con 
formity with God; but original righteousness is_ordinarily received 
as embracing only the principal conformity. "_ 




[15] (a) HOLL. (475) proves impassibility in the following 
manner: gainful and destructive sufferings are the punishment 
of sin (pen. 3: 16; Sirach 38: 15); wherefore the first man, being_ 
without sin, was~lree from its bitter suffering. 

QUEN. (II, 7) remarks on this point: "The first men in the 
state of innocency had a body incapable of suffering, inasmuch as 
it was not exposed to those things which could have injured their 
natural disposition and contributed to the death and corruption of 
the body. Such things were: a freedom from all injuries arising 
from pain and trouble, special protection against rains, winds, 
heat, diseases, etc., and other inconveniences, which now, since 
the Fall, are innumerable (Gen. 2: 25). Meanwhile, however, if 
man -had remained in his integrity, physical changes would not 
have been wanting, such as generation, nutrition, etc., and he 
would have needed food and drink for his sustentation." 

(6) Immortality. QUEN. (II, 7): " It is proved from Gen. 2: 17; 
Rom. 5: 12; 6: 23." 

We must distinguish (1) between the immortality whicfc denotffl 
absolute freedom from the power and act of dying (and thus God 
is immortal, and angels, our souls, and the bodies of the redeemed 
and the damned), and (2) the immortality which denotes a freedom 
from the proximate power of dying and the natural tendency to 
death, and, at the same time, from the act of dying, in such a 
manner, however, that death could happen upon a certain pro 
posed condition; and such was man s immortality in his state of 
integrity. We must make a distinction between absolute freedom 
from death, which will exist in another life, and a conditional or 
decreed freedom, which existed in the first state of man (viz., as 
long as he should not sin), and which did not exclude but in 
cluded the use of food and drink, and especially the eating of the 
tree of life, by which means our first parents were enabled, in a 
natural way, to perpetuate life. It is one thing not to be able to die, 
and another to be able not to die, and still another not to be able not to 
die. The last belongs to all sinners, the second to Adam in his 
state of integrity, and the first to the blessed. (II, 8.) 

(c) Dominion. HOLL. (475) : (o^God granted to the first man 
dominion over sublunary things, extending over seas and lands, but 
not over the stars of heaven, except as far as he converted their in 
fluence to his own advantage. (6) That dominion was not abso 
lute and direct, but relative and useful, which denotes the inhabit- 
ing pf_the_earth, with the use of its fruits. _ (c} Dominion is received 
either in its etymological signification for the right and power of rul 
ing, or formally for actual ruling. In the former sense, it is the less 

S3 CZ,.. vV, 


principal part of the image of God; in the latter it was an external 
accident, or addition, to that image." 

BR. (297) cites some more corporeal excellences, viz.: "But 
God bestowed upon man in respect of his body also a certain image 
of Himself, inasmuch as not only the perfections of the soui ex 
pressed themselves through the external acts of the body, but, in 
addition, the members themselves, of the organic body, have a 
certain analogy to the divine attributes, viz. : the countenance, 
erect towards heaven, furnishes a semblance of the divine majesty; 
but particularly the immortal body, or that which could endure- 
forever and remain free from every corruption, bears, according to 
the intention of God, a resemblance to the divine immortality." 
Yet Baier perceives that not all these excellences were lost by the 1 
Fall, and reckons them in part, therefore, as belonging to the 
image of God generically received. 

[16] Therefore the original condition of man is called a most 
happy one. QUEN. (II, 2): "The happiness of it appeared (1) 
from tlir condition of tin- soul ; which \vas wise MI id holy; ( ~2 ) I roin 
the condition of the body, which was beautiful, not susceptible of 
suffering, and immortal; (3) from the condition of life, which was 
happy and blessedj_ (4) from jthe condition of his habitation,. 
which was most pleasant, truly a garden of pleasure, called 

GRH. (IV, 247): "Hence it happened that man, joyful, blessed, 
and contented, delighted in God, his Creator, there being in him 
neither fear, nor terror, nor sadness." 

[17] BR. (296): "Therefore also this divine image was a nat 
ural endowment, or it belonged naturally to man, so that he might 
rightly perform his connatural acts; since, in the absence of this, 
his nature would not have been pure, but impure." 

HOLL. (477): "The image of God did not, indeed, constitute 
the nature of the first man, after the manner of an essential part; 
nor did it emanate from his nature, per se and necessarily, as if 
properly inseparable from it: yet it was natural to the first man, 
because by creation it began to exist with his very nature, and 
thus both belonged to him and was deeply impressed in him, and 
also thoroughly perfected his nature in the state of integrity, so 
that he could attain his end; it could be propagated, also, to pos 
terity by natural generation." 

The different significations in which the word natural is used are, 
according to QUEN. (II, 9), the following: "Anything is said to 
be natural (1) by constitution (constitutive ), viz., that which con 
stitutes a nature itself, and is either the natur? itself, or an essen- 


tial part of it, as soul and body; (2) 03 sequence (consecutive), 
viz. . that which follows nature, and flows essentially from its form, 
as the faculties of the soul, teachableness, etc. ; (3) subjectively 
(subjective}, viz., that which adheres most closely to nature as a 
natural property; (4) by way of perfecting (perfective}, viz., that 
which perfects and adorns it internally; (5) by way of transfer 
(transitive), viz., that which is propagated naturally along with the 
nature to others. When we say that primeval righteousness was 
natural or connatural to Adam, we do not understand the word 
natural in the first or second sense, but only in the third, fourth, and 
fifth, viz., on account of a natural inhesion, perfection, and propaga 

Original Righteousness is, therefore, not a supernatural gift, for 
that is supernatural which does not belong to nature from its 
origin, but by special grace is superadded by God to supply its 
imperfection." If original righteousness, then, were said to be a 
.superadded gift, that would conflict with Gen. 1: 31. 

HOLL. (478): "Antithesis of the Papists, who maintain that 
the image of God was a supernatural gift superadded to man for 
the purpose of supplementing his connatural imperfection, as a 
wreath or garment adorns a man externally, and as the rein re 
strains the horse. But as the nature of man and of the horse 
remains incorrupt when the garment and the rein are removed, 
thus they suppose that the nature of man was not corrupted by the 
Fall, the image of God having been removed, but that it remained 

Together with this assertion is also rejected the other concerning 
the status purorum naturalium. (See Note 2. ) 

[18] On this point the Dogmaticians are not agreed. GRH., 
CAL., QUEN., and others call the gracious indwelling of the Trinity, 
etc., a supernatural gift| others, as HOLL. , understand this also as 
a natural gift. HOLL. (484): "There are, indeed, some theolo 
gians of great reputation who think that the grace of God and the 
indwelling of the most Holy Trinity were supernatural to the first 
man. Yet, if we consider (1) that the nature of the first man never 
was nor ever could be upright without the indwelling and sanctifica- 
tion of the Holy Spirit, and (2) that original sin, which came into 
the place of the divine image after the fall of Adam, introduced 
into fallen man not only corporeal but also spiritual death (which 
consists in the deprivation of the mystical union of the soul with 
God), we agree with those authors who decide that divine grace and 
the indwelling of the most Holy Trinity were not supernatural, but 
natural, to the first man. 



On the other hand, HOLL. (ib. ) points out as supernatural gifts 
"extraordinary revelation and that which is connected with it 
(viz., positive law and supernatural strength to fulfil it)." 

t- ~~/ > 



" T7ie ff<ofe of Corruption ia <farf condition into which mem voJ-_ 
untarily precipitated himself by his own departure from the chie 
good, thus becoming both wicked and miserable." QUEN. (II, 48). 

HHHIS state was brought about by sin^ and we have, there- 
-L fore, here to treat : (1) Of sin in general. (2^ Of the par- 
ticular sin by which this state was brought about, as well as 
of the state itself. (3) Of the actual sins proceeding from it ; 
and finally, (4) Of the powers yet remaining in man after the 
Fall, or, of the question to what extent man yet possesses 
freedom of the will. 

25. Of Sin in General. 

According to 1 John 3: 4, sin is every deviation from a law 
of God (HOLL., 488 : "Sin is a deviation from the divine Law"), 
whether that law be written in our hearts, or be communicated 
externally by positive precept. [1] It can proceed only from 
a being endowed with reason and free will. But from this 
"general conception of sin it does not, therefore, necessarily fol 
low, that every such act as may be a deviation from the Law 
of God must b(T performed with the consciousness and_purpose 
that such a deviation from the Law of God shall take place. 
[2] God is in no sense the author of sin ; He did not create 
sin in man, since of all that was created, it is said that it was 
good (G.en. 1: 31): neither did He decree that at any particu 
lar time man should become a sinner. He has neither urged 
man on to that which is sinful ( 1: 13), nor did He ap 
prove of sin when it entered. Much rather does He hate it at 
all times (Pg, 5: 5 ; Zach. 8: 17 ; 1 John 2: 16.) [3] The origin 
of sin lies, therefore, only in the will of the creature who, of_ 


his own accord, departed from God, and acted in opposition to. 
the divine command. [4] And here Satan made the begin- 
ning, and then led man also astray to si a- [5] 

The immediate consequence of sin_is that the sinner, who 
broke the commandment which he was bound to obey, m^ 
curred guilt which deserves punishment. HOLL. (502) : " The 
consequence of sin is responsibility for guilt and liability to 
punishment." [6] The punishment is partly temporal, partly 

[1] BR. (388 sq. ): By the Law is to be understood the eternal 
and immutable wisdom and decision of God concerning those 
things which belong or do not belong to a rational creature, as 
such, united with His will, that they may or may not be done. 

[2] HOLL. (497): "A sinner is a rational creature, endowed 
with a free will, and subject to the divine Law, who departs from 
it, by doing what it forbids, and neglecting what it enjoins." 
(501): u That which is voluntary ( f/iowrwr), does not enter into 
the definition of sin generically considered. Sin is called vuluntafji, 
either aubjectirely, as far as it inheres in the will, or effectively, 
according as it proceeds from a deliberate volition. Not every sin 
is voluntary in the latter mode. Sin is called voluntary, either 
formally^ which is committed by one s own volition, or virtually, 
which was voluntary in the root and stock of the human race, 
from which it has been propagated to posterity, whose will would 
have been the same as that in Adam, had they lived at the same 
time with him [/. e. , sin may be voluntary, when not volitionary] 

[3] MEL. (Loc. Th., 56): God is not the cause of sin, nor is 
sin a thing contrived or ordained by Him, but it is a horrible de- 
jtruction of the divine work and order. 

CHMN. (Loc. Th., 1, 146); "The explanation also must be 
noted, of what is intended when it is said that God is not the cause 
of sin, viz. , that He neither desires or approves of sin, neither does 
He influence the Avill to sin. For some understand that He is not 
the author of sin in such a sense, as in the beginning to create it, 
or to have it in Himself, or to produce it through Himself, but 
that men sin nevertheless by the will of God, and that God pro 
duces sins not only permissively, but also efficiently, in men and 
by men; yet He is not, in their view, therefore to be called the 
author of sin. Therefore is added, as if for the sake of explana 
tion : author and cause of sin. 

QUEN. (II, 49): "God is in no manner the efficient cause jof 
sin._ Neither in part nor in whole, neither directly nor indirectly, 

neither accidentally nor per se, whether in the form of Adam s 
transgression or in that of any other sin, is God or can He be 
called, the cause or author of sin. God is not the cause of sin, 
Q) physically and per se, because thus the evil or sin has no 
causey (2) not morally, by commanding, persuading, or approv 
ing, because He does not desire sin, but hatesjt; nor (3) by way 
of accident, because nothing can happen to God either by chance 
or fortuitously. This conflicts with the divine wisdom, prescience, 
goodness, holiness, and independence, as is proved from Ps. 5:5; 
45: 7; Is. 65: 12; Zach. 8: 17; 1 John 1: 5; James 1: 13, "l7." 

How God stands related to sin was shown in the discussion on 
the doctrine of concurrence. 

[4] QUEN. (II, 49): Whatever want of conform ity_to_Law 
there ever is in a rational agent must be ascribed to tin. 


T free will of the creature itself, as being spontaneously deficient in 
acting. Ps. 5:5; Hps. 13: 9; Majtt. 23: 37. A rational agent, or 
creature, which possesses reason, and the power of knowing those 
things which the Law given either commands or forbids, is properly 
said to be the cause of sin, viz., the will of the devil and of man. 
But this rational agent ought to be viewed, not in respect of any 
real influence, but in respect of a deficiency; for sin has rather a 
v deficient than an efficient cause. * 

[5] CONF. AUG. (19): "Concerning the cause of sin, they teach 
\ v that, although God creates and preserves nature, yet the cause of 
^ sin is the will of the wicked, namely, the devil and impious men, 
i which without the assistance of God turns itself away from God." 
CHMN. (Loc. Th., I, 148): "The devil is the first author of sin: 
* (1) because by his own free will lie himself turned away from 
S. God; (2) because he is the cause of sin_in the human race in this 
J way, that he deceived and seduced Eve in the state of integrity, so 

that she departed from God." 

| [6] HOLL. (502): * Guilt is a moral foulness or deformity, re 
sulting from an act inconsistent with the Law, and unworthy of a 
V rational creature, and inhering in the sinner as a shameful stain. 
| Responsibility for guilt (reatus culpse) is an obligation, by which 
\ man, on account of an act inconsistent with the moral Law, is 
held, as if bound, under sin and its blemish, so that in consequence 
i of this act, the sinner is regarded and pronounced detestable. 
V. The divine punishment is a grievous evil by which God, the 
^ offended Judge, punishes the guilt before incurred and not yet 
forgiven, so as to display His justice and majesty, and vindicate 
from contempt the authority of the Law. Liability to punishment 

*Cf. Chap. IV, Note 13. 



{realm pcenx), is an obligation by which the sinner is held bound, 
by God, the offended Judge, to endure the punishment of the 
unforgiven guilt. Guilt differs from punishment. The former, 
precedes, the latter follows. Guilt deserves punishment; punish 
ment is due to guilt, and is, as it were, its wages. Rom. 6: 23. 
Guilt proceeds from the will; the will of the sinner revolts from 
punishment. The sinner contracts guilt by his acts; he endures 
punishment by suffering." 

26. Man s First Transgression, and the State thereby produced, 
viz., Original Sin. 

It was the first of the human family who committed the first 
sin. These, seduced by Satan under the form of a serpent, of 
their own free will, transgressed the prohibition of God (Gen. 
2: 16, 17) to eat of the tree of knowledge. [1] HOLL. (507) : 
" The first sin of men is the transgression of the Law of Para 
dise, by which our first parents, having been persuaded by the 
devil, and having abused the freedom of the will, violated the 
divine prohibition concerning the not eating the fruit of the 
tree of the knowledge of good and evil, and brought down 
upon themselves and their posterity, the divine image having 
been lost, a great guilt, and the liability to temporal and eter 
nal punishment." [2] In consequence of this transgression, 
our first parents burdened themselves with a guilt which de 
served punishment; therefore also God immediately inflicted 
upon them (Gen. 2: 17) the punishment threatened in the 
event of transgression. [3] The consequence of their sin then 
was, that their whole relation to God, and their corporeal, 
spiritual, and moral state, wen- changed The state of right 
eousness, above described, ceased to exist, and, in its place, 
was introduced a state of moral depravity, [4] which must 
therefore be transmitted to all their posterity, since they who 
are begotten after the common course of nature cannot be in 
troduced into a different state from that of their parents at the 
time when they beget them ; so that the first sin, in its results, 
affects not only our first parents, but also all their posterity. 
[5] Since, therefore, they incurred the divine wrath by reason 
of sm, so also are all mankind, descended from them, in a 
similar state ; and that, too, for two reasons : first, because the 
state of depravity, which they have derived from their first 


&C4. 5*-- 


parents, renders its subjects the objects of God s wrath ; [6] 
secondly, because all the descendants of Adam are_rep resented. 
and contained in him, as the representative of the human fam 
ily therefore, that which was done by Adam can be regarded 
as the act of all, the consequences of which also must be borne 
by all, so that Adam s sin also is imputed to his posterity, i. e., 
it is regarded as their own sin, because they are all repre 
sented in Adam. [7] The state of depravity which followed 
Adam s transgression, and which now belongs to our first par 
ents, as well as to all their posterity, is designated by the ex 
pression Original Sin. [8] HOLL. (518) : "Original Sin is the 
thorough corruption of human nature, which, by the Fall of our 
first parents, is deprived of original righteousness, and is prone to 
every evil." [9] According to its single parts, it is described. 
(1) as the lack of the Original Righteousness, which ought to 
exist in man ; (2) as carnal concupiscence, or inclination to 
evil. [10] In the place of original holiness and purity, there 
came directly the opposite, a state thoroughly sinful and de 
sirous of that which is evil, which in itself is sin, so that, in 
consequence of this constant propensity to evil, and not origi 
nally on account of actual transgressions proceeding from it, 
man is an object of the divine displeasure. [11] This depraved 
state, then, is not only the foundation and fountain of all ac- 
tual transgressions, but also has, as its consequence, the wrath 
of God and temporal and eternal punishment. |"12] 

Concerning this state, finally, it must be asserted, that it is 
natural to us in that sense in which this is said of original 
righteousness in the state of integrity. Were this state differ 
ent, man would not cease to be man. and liciicr if does not 
constitute man s essence, but is connected with the essence, or 
the nature of man as he is now born, and that too in the most 
intimate and inseparable manner ; and as no man is now born, 
except in that depraved state, so also this state can never be 
lost by man, as long as he lives on the earth. Man, when he 
becomes a partaker of the Holy Ghost, can indeed refuse obe- 
dience to his evil propensity; and, when redemption through_ 
Christ is apprehended by faith, he is also freed from the con- 
sequences of sin, i. e. t the wrath of God and punishment ; but 
yet the evil inclination to sin always remains in him^ All 




** *ty Cxs+^-ftjt- <4****+y 
&/ * 

3 - 






^ this is expressed in the adjuncts of original sin, which QUEN. 
^ enumerates (II, 62): \. 

1. Natural Inherence, Heb. 12: 1 ; Rom. 7: 21, which, there- . 
fore, is not a substance, but an accident. [13] 

2. Natural transmissibiliti/, G_en. 5: 3 ; Job 14: 4 ; Ps. 51: 6 ; 
John 3: 6 ; Eph. 2: 3. [14] 

3. Duration (a tenacity or obstinate inherence during life, 
^ Rom. 7: 17 ; Heb. 12: 1). [15] 


\ iyK [1] QUEX. (II, 51): "The first sin in the human race is the- 
1 ^voluntary apostasy of our first parents from God their Creator, by 
^ j which, having been seduced by the devil, they transgressed, _of 
v ,itheir own accord, both the general divine and internal law im- 
1 j pressed upon their mind, and the particular external prohibition 
concerning the not eating of the fruit of the tree of the knowledge 
of good and evil. Concerning the existence of this sin, the his 
tory contained in Gen. 3, does not permit us to doubt. By Paul 
it is called the transgression of Adam, Rom. 5: 14, because he 
transgressed the divine precept by eating of the forbidden fruit. 
The Fall is ascribed to Adam by way of eminence, both because 
Jhe was the head of the woman, and also because he was the begin- 
>xj\ ning and root of the human race, from whom, as the source, sin 

| ^descended to posterity. For a like reason it is called a transgres- ^ \ ^ 
^Kf ^Jsion by one, Rom. 5: 15, 17, and 1, where by one man the Apostle ^ *^, X s 
^s understands Adam particularly, so, however, as not entirely to ox- 
Iclude Eve." [Hurr. (312): "It is noteworthy that the Apostle 
^does not say of (ex) one man, but by (per) one man, thus im- 

, plying that the principal efficient cause was Satan."] Hence S 
^^.jarise the following definitions: xJ 

(^3 QUEN. (II, 51): (a) " The external first and principal (but re- 1 
^ mote) cause of this sin is S"ian, acting here, not by internal impulse, K 
nor by external violence (for each is repugnant to the integrity of f 
the state in which man was originally created), but by mere exter- 
moral suasion. John 8: 44; 2 Cor. 11: 3; Rev. 12: 9. 
&) "The imtnnnental came is a true and natural serpent, but^ 
possessed by the devil^Gen. 3: 1, 14 (not a mere serpent, but one K 
possessed by the devil, as is manifest from the conversation and ^ 
discourse with Eve, and also from the punishment, Gen. 3: 15. ^ 
" or the bruising of the serpent s head by the seed of the woman, ; 
which was to follow, has respect, not to a natural, but to the in 
fernal serpent)." 

The_udernal and directly efficient cause is the intellect 




f T 



will of the first man, not from any internal defect therein, which 
could not exist in an unfallen state, but by way of accident, in 
consequence of his wandering and departure from God, through 
seduction from without. (Man did not fall in consequence of any 
absence or denial of any special grace, nor from the presence of 
any internal languor and natural defect, but through the accidental 
abuse of his liberty, while his will yielded to the external persua 
sion and seduction of the devil, and interrupted the gracious 
influence of God.)" 

(d) The order and mode of the seduction are the following: HOLL. 
(511): Eve was first and immediately seduced by the devil 
(HoLL. (505 j^ Eve sinned first, not because she was more feeble 
in intellect than Adam, but because she was more yielding in will), 
while Adam was drawn mediately ^and by the persuasion of the 
woman, into the same sin, and thus the fall of Adam is referred 
also to the devil, as the first author of sin." In reference to the 
passage, 1 Tim. 2: 14, QUEX. remarks (II, 53): "These words are 
not to be understood of the seduction simply, but of the mode and 
order of the seduction; seduction is either external, through the 
address of the serpent from without, or internal, through the sug 
gestion of Satan from within. In the former sense Eve only, and 
not Adam, was seduced." 

(e~) The particular sinful act* which the transgression involves 
are: HOLL. (510): "(_) on the part of the intellect, a want of 
f aith __( incredulitas}, (Eve hesitated between the Word of God, G.en. 
2: 17, and the word of the devil, Gen. 3: 4); (6) on the part of 
the will, selfishness and pride, Gen. 3:5; fc) on the part of the 
sensuous appetite, an inordinate desire for the forbidden fruit, 
Gen. 3: 6, from which came forth the external act forbidden by 
the law of Paradise." 

[2] HOLL. (509): Our first parents, in their Fall, immediately 
violated the positive law given in Paradise, forbidding to eat of 
the fruit of the tree of the knowlege of good and evil; mediately 
and really by their disobedience they broke through the restraints 
of the entire moral Law. The intention of the positive Law was a 
trial nr test of obedience, \vhicb, ;is due to Cod, the \vholi- moril 
Law demands. But he who fears not to transgress one precept of 
the Law, will not blush to violate the remainder, since they have 
the same author and the same obligatory force." 

[3] HOLL. (512, 513): The consequences of Adam s fall are 
guilt and punishment. Punishment, like an inseparable compan 
ion. follows closely upon guilt. God, in His holiness, has threat 
ened death to man, if he transgresses the Law which was given 

y. ^-< 

^ / *w !r ~V , y v v ***w ^ - * 

him. Ggn. 2: 17. By death was meant spiritual, corporeal, ana/* 

eternal death. Spiritual death, the root of all evil, is the immedi- 
ate consequence of the first sin. For, as soon as man turned his 
heart away from the divine Law, he deprived himself of spiritual 
union with God, who is the life of the soul, and thus, having been 
deserted by God, he died spiritually. This spiritual death brought 
with it the loss of the divine image, the entire corruption of the 
whole human nature, and the loss of free will in spiritual things. 
The death of the body follows spiritual death, or the death of the 
soul, mcJ^ingjdHhe diseases and miseries by which man is sur 
rounded" from without. Whither also are to beTeferred the severe 
and burdensome labor which must be constantly endured by the 
man, Gen. 3: 17, and the painful throes of parturition in the 
woman, Gen. 3: 16. Although our first parents did not suffer the death 
of the body as soon as they fell, nevertheless from that time they became 
subject to death} since this_is the wages of sin, Rom. 6: 23. Eternal 
death is a perpetual exclusion from the beatific enjoyment of God, 
united with constant and most excruciating torments, which, by 
the force of the threatening annexed to the divine Law, Adam and 
all his posterity must have suffered, unless Jesus Christ, the Re 
deemer of the human race and the Restorer of the lost image of 
God, had interposed." 

[4] CHMN. (Loc. Th., I, 227): "For this, too, is the misery o 
Original Sin, that not only the image itself of God was lost, but 
also the knowledge of God was nearly extinguished." KG. (80): 
The effects of the first sin, in respect of our first parents, are: the 
total loss ofaffie dlvhynniftgey some fragments, indeed, or vestige s 
remaining ; the nmst profolihd depravity of the whole nature; ex 
posure to punishment expressed in the penalty annexed to the 
law of Paradise; the griefs and miseries of this life; and finally 
jdeath itself." 

[5] GRH. (IV, 315): "We must not regard the sin of our first 
parents and its consequences, as if they had respect only to them, 
and did not in any way affect us; because afterwards Adam begat 
a son, in his own image and likeness, Gen. 5: 3. As he was, 
such silsii did In- beget his hildrru. despoiled of the image <_>f 
God, destitute of original righteousness, subject to sin, to the_ 
wrath of God, to death and damnation. Adam lived, and we all 
lived in him. Adam perished, and we all perished in him. As 
when parents lose the possession of a feudal benefit, the male chil 
dren also lose it, because the parents received it not only for them 
selves, but also for their children ; so also our first parents, having 
been created in the image of God, had received those gifts which 

were bestowed by the goodness of God, like a deposit, to be faith 
fully guarded for themselves and their posterity; thus also, by 
sinning, they lost them, not only for themselves, but for all their 

HOLL. (523): "Our first parents are the proximate cause of 
this original blemish, from whose impure nature the original stain 
has flowed into our hearts. Everything follows the seeds of its 
own nature. _ No black crow ever produces a white dove, nor 
Irrorious lion a ^mtlr hnnb; and no man [Diluted with inl>oni sin 
ever begets a holy child. 

[6] BR. (403) says, referring to Rom. 5: 12: "Therefore we 
must say that all sinned in one, inasmuch as, he having sinned, 
it came to pass that all who should be naturally descended from 
him would necessarily be born with sin, and thus every one on 
account of his own sin would become, in his very birth, liable to 
death, see Ep_h. 2:3; so that, when all men are said to be children 
of wrath, the cause of this guilt is taken for granted, namely, be 
cause all by nature are sinners. For to be a son of wrath is the 
same as to be liable to divine wrath, and worthy of punishment, 
on account of the violation of the Law, to be inflicted by God, the 
vindicator of the Law. Therefore, one could not be by nature a 
child of wrath, unless he were polluted by $in in his own nature 
or_by the corruption of his nature." But BR. also adds (414): 
"It is not necessary, neither, perhaps, is it wise, that we should 
pryingly inquire how God could so impute the sin of our first 
parents to their posterity, not yet in existence, that they should 
for this reason necessarily be born destitute of original righteous 
ness, and sinners. For it is enough that the fact ( 6r<) is re 
vealed, although the explanation of it ( r) be unknown." 

GRH. (IV, 316): "Therefore that sin (of Adam) is not in alt 
respects foreign to us, because Adam did not sin as a private man_j 
but as the head of the whole human rax;e]_ and as human nature 
was communicated through him, so also natural corruption was 
similarly propagated" . . . (327): "Because, therefore, all who 
are born in the natural and common course of generation are under 
sin, so also all are by nature children of wrath, liable to death and 
damnation; for it is not possible that God should not be angry 
at sin. 

[7] HOLL. (513): l The first am o/ Adam, since he is regarded as 
the common parent, head, root, and representative of the whole race, is 
truly and justly imputed by God,far guilt and punishment, to aM his pos- 
tprity. By the sin that is imputed to us is understood (QuEN., 
II, 111): "That disobedience by which the first parents of the 

T^n as? fry 


"^-e-A^t-t^-e*. tf /r^-c 4-fLc**ls >ixi- <^ ~v ,/ 

/ C V 

human race turned themselves aw r ay from God, etc. Therefore, 
also, it is said (II, 53) : "Not only our first parents were the sub 
ject of the first sin, but also all their posterity to be propagated by 
natural generation. For Adam and Eve were substitutes for the 
whole human race, inasmuch as they ought to be regarded as both 
the natural (? . e., seminal) and also the moral source of the human 
race, namely, of the entire progeny in nature and grace. Hence 
the apostle properly says, Rom. 5: 12, iy , in whom, viz., in the 
first man, all sinned, or in that, because that, one sinned, all sinned, 
viz. , in Adam, who represented the persons of all his posterity; and 
v. 19, by one man s disobedience many were made sinners. 
That is to say, we have been made sinners through the sin of 
Adnni, not by mere interpretation, nor even by limitation, but by 
the imputation of real guilt, and the propagation of natural de 
pravity, and the participation of an actual crime. And thus the 
proximate cause why, when the first man sinned, all his posterity 
sinned, is the existence of the whole human species in the person 
of our first parent, Rorn. 5: 12. For our first parents were then 
considered not only as the firstjndividuals of the human race, but 
also as the true root, stock, and source of the whole human race, 
which in tjiem could both stand jmd fall. Hence we are said to 
have been in the loins of our first parents." Id. (II, 111): "The 
first sin is considered I. With regard to Adam himself who^ by 
one transgression involved all his posterity in crime, in guilt, in 
punishment; in so far, namely, as his will was the interpreter of 
the wills of all of them who, as the Scriptures say, were in his loins, 
whose own act the sin interpretatively is, so that they are born 
with the absence of the perfection that should exist. The will, I 
say, of Adam, as the source and root of the human race, was con 
sidered as ours, not formally, but interpretatively. For the first 
man had the wills of all his posterity gathered up, as it were, in his 
own will; whence, for himself and all his posterity, he declared his 
will and that of his posterity against the Law that had been given. 
II. With regard to God, as the Judge who, according to His 
mighty power, justly punishes the crime against the divine majesty 
also in the posterity L namely, those fallen in Adam, by the want, 
in so far, of original righteousness, and thus most justly imputes 
to them the sin of Adam unto condemnation." QUEN., however, 
distinguishes between immediate and mediate imputation (II, 
114): The first Adamitic sin is immediately imputed to us so far 
as we existed afafeacly in Adam. But the sin of Adam is mediately 
imputed to us, viz. , as original sin is mediately inherent in us, so 
far as we are regarded in our own persons and individually! For 


nA i 


no one is considered as a sinner by God and to no one is that first 
act imputed, except to him who descends, contaminated with orig 
inal sin, from that same Adam." 

The word to impute, QUEN. explains thus (II, 111): < The word 
imputation in this place is received not physically, for implanting 
or inserting, but relatively, for estimating. In the Hebrew language- 
it is explained by DCTT, in the Greek by aoy/eo0a<, and in the Ger 
man by zurechnen ; as it you would say, in computing, that you set 
something over to some one, or in counting or calculating, that you 
assign something. Imputation is proved from Rom. 5^12 t 14 3 19. 
The common explanation of the first passage is: "in whom, viz., 
Adam, all have sinned." But QUEN. remarks (II, 58) that "it 
makes little difference whether you translate f<? v, in ichom, or on 
which account. For, if it is retained as causal, it confirms our view. 
For thus we argue: They who die, die because they have sinned. 
But all mankind die, even infants and those npt yet bom. There 
fore, they die because they have sinned/ " But infants and those 
not yet born, die either on account of some fault (delictum ) of their 
own or of an actual transgression; therefore, on account of the 
actual transgression of another, sa7. , of Adam, who tainted them 
with his own stain. But if the other signification be received, i. e., 
(in quo} relatively in Adam, as root, fountain, -cause, head, it is 
again proved that Adam s sin is imputed to all." In reference to 
Rom. 5: 19, QUEN. remarks (II, 113): "As we are made righteous 
by the imputation of the righteousness of Christ, so were we made 
unrighteous by the disobedience of Adam." 

In order to express himself with entire accuracy, QUEN. remarks, 
in addition (II, 53), that the phrase, "the fall of Adam," is taken 
in different senses. The one sense is, "Specifically a transgression 
in relation to the forbidden tree," and therefore it is, "Formally 
considered, the sin of the individual Adam;" in this case we say, 
The Fall becomes ours by imputation only. The other sense 
is, "That also which flowed from this transgression, viz., the want 
of original righteousness, and the corruption of the whole nature;" 
and then we must say, It passes over to posterity, not only by 
imputation, but also by natural generation." We remark, in ad 
dition, that the doctrine of the imputation of the guilt and punish 
ment of our first parents was fully developed only by the later 
Theologians, from about the time of CALOVIUS, but an intimation 
of it appears in the FORM. CONC. (Sol. Dec., I, 9): That fault or 
liability, whereby it comes to pass that we alL because of the disj 
obedience of Adam and Eve, are under God s abhorrence and are 
by nature children of wrath." 

3 - 

2v7iXA--tx-*. ; 


The Scholastics distinguished "original sin originating," 
original sin originated." QUEN. (II, 115): Active, or \ 
7 originating original sin, is that vicious act which our first parents M 
^committed, by transgressing the paradisaic Law, which act, indeed7 
H| has not passed over to their posterity, nor is it found in them, except i 
^ \by imputation only. However, it gave origin to the deep corruption 
^ of man, which is called passive or originated original sin, which is y^ 
t a vicious habit, contracted by Adam through that actual transgres 
sion of the divine~Tiaw, and propagated to his posterity." The 
word is here used in the latter sense. 

HOLL. (518): "In ecclesiastical phraseology, not biblical, this sin, 
derived from the fall of Adam, is called original, and indeed, not 
in respect of the origin of the world or of man, but ( 1 ) because de 
rived from Adam, the root and beginning of the human race; (2) 
because it is connected with the origin of the descendants of Adam ; 
| (3) because it is the origin and fountain of actual transgressions." 
"In the language of Scripture, this connate depravity is called: 
(1) indwelling sin, Rom. 7: 17, because after the Fall it fixed its 
seat firmly in man, nor departs from him until the habitation of 
soul and body is dissolved; (2) besetting sin, because it surrounds 
us on all sides, like a long garment impeding a runner, Heb. 12: 1; 
(3)_ a law in the members, Rojm. 7: 23, since, as a law rules and 
governs an agent, thus original sin directs the members of the body 
to the perpetration of wicked deeds; (4) an evil lying near, Rom. V 
7: 21, because like a chain it clings to a man who wishes to do ? ^ 
good." ^ J 

[9] More extended definitions. HOLL. (518): " Original Sin is 
a want of original righteousness, connected with a depraved incli 
nation, corrupting in the most inward parts the whole human, 
nature, derived from the fall of our first parents, and propagated to 
all men by natural generation, rendering them indisposed to spirit- { 
ual good, but inclined to evil, and making them the objects of^* J 
divine wrath, and eternal condemnation." v \| 

QUEN. (II, 52): "Original Sin is a want of original righteous-^J 
ness, derived from the sin of Adam and propagated to all men who 
are begotten in the ordinary mode of generation, including the 
dreadful corruption and depravity of human nature and all its 
powers, excluding all from the grace of God and . eternal life, and 
subjecting them to temporal and eternal punishments, unless they 

be born again of water and the Spirit, or obtain the remission of 
their sins through Christ. 

The proofs of the existence of Original Sin are drawn from Gen. 
6: 5; 8: 21; Job 14: 4; Ps. 14: 2, 3; 58: 3; Isaiah 48: 8; 



5, 6; Epji. 2: 3. Especially from P_s. 51: 5; Rom. 5: 12-14; Gen, 
5: 3. CHMN. (Loc. Th., I, 230) thus comments on the important 
passage, Rom. 5: 12: " (1) The efficient cause of Original Sin is V- 
sho\vn to )Tc the first man. ( 2) The subject affected by OriginaJ ? . 
Sin is pointed out, i. e. , that it not only adhered in Adam, but has 
passed into the world, i. e. , into all men who come into the world. 
(3) The punishment is described, which is not only the death of 3. 
the body, but the reign of death and the sentence of condemnation. 
. . . (4) Lest the guilt should be understood only as for the sin of K 
another, without any personal fault, Paul affirms that the w r hole- 
world is guilty, both in consequence of the one sin of the first man,, 
and because all have sinned, i. e., have been constituted sinners, 
(5) He indicates what kind of sin it was, when he says that even j" 
they have original sin who have not sinned after the similitude of 
Adam s transgression. (6) He describes the manner in which 

original sin is propagated he says, by one man." , 

[GRH., IV, 322: "The chief arguments of the Pelagians are: 

1. ^z. 18: 20, * The son shall not bear the iniquity of the father. /. ^ 
Answer: The passage treats not of original, but of actual sins, S 
whose penalty the son does not bear, if he desist from the sins of 

the guilty parent, and be converted. We invert the argument. 
Infants are punished by disease and death; therefore, they have 
sin of their own, because of which they are punished, viz., original 
sin propagated in them by their parents, which is no longer foreign 
to them, but transmitted to them, by the contagion of propagation. 

2. Ps. 106: 38, Infants are pronounced innocent. John 4: 11; Rom, z 
9: 11. Answer. This is to be understood relatively with respect 
to actual sins, and not with respect to original sin. 3. Rom. 4: 3 
15: Where there is no law, there i$ no transgression. Answer: 

K j[ Infants are both without the Law, i. e. , they are ignorant of the 


Law, Rgjn. 2: 12, and yet are not without Law, i. e., they are not 
free from the accusation whereby the Law reproves and condemns 
all lawlessness. 4. If there be Original Sin, sin must be attributed to 
God forming infants in the womb ^therefore, marriage is to be con 
demned. Answer: The fault in a nature must be discriminated 
from the kindness of God in forming the nature. Both nature 
and the fault or defect of the nature are propagated: of which, the 
former is good; the latter, evil. 5. If the sins of godly parents are 
forgiven in baptism, how then do they propagate sin to their children f 

Answer : Carnal generation is not according to grace, but according 
to nature. Augustine : In begetting, he does not give that whence 
one is regenerated, but whence one is generated. That which is 
of flesh is flesh. Do you ask how an unrighteous man is 




born of a righteous, when you see that one could not be righteous, 
unless he were regenerate ? A grain of wheat, though freed from 
chaff, produces grains with chaff. Circumcised Israelites beget 
uncircumcised children."] 

[10] QUEN. (II, 59): "In form, it is an habitual want of orig 
inal righteousness, Ps. 14: 3; 53: 3; Rom. 3: 10, 11, 12, 23, 
united with a contrary form, i. e. , the most complete corruption of 
the whole nature, Rom. 7: 17, 20, 21; Heb. 12: 1." See Sym 
bolical Books, and especially Ap. Conf., II, 26; Form. Cone., I, 11. 

In reference to the former (viz., the lack of original righteousness"), 
BR. (404) remarks: "Here belongs that death, or the want of 
spiritual life, and of all the active powers which are required for ^ 
the exercise of vital acts m conformity with the divine Law. And 
this death is ascribed to men, because they are by nature children 
of wrath, Eph. 2:1, 5.; Col. 2: 13. For, as original righteousness^ 
had inheredin the faculties of the soul ef the first men, and had, 
v as it were, animated and prepared them to live a life of godliness, 
and to elicit and exercise among themselves actions and motions <S J 
spiritually good; so, this primeval righteousness having been lost, 
a man is like a dead body which has been deprived, by the separa- 
. tion of the soul from the body, of all power to call forth in itself 
^ and to exercise vital acts and motions, because he is destitute of 
^strength for the performance of spiritual actions and motions." ^ 

In reference to the latter (viz., concupiscence), BR. (404): -? 


the same carnal man who, in consequence of the want of 
spiritual life, is like one dead, in another respect is said to be 


and very active, but it is a life alien from the life of God, Erjh. 

18; 2: 3. The faculties of the soul are, indeed, essentially vital 
V faculties; and, when they are deprived of original righteousness, 
^although they lack the powers necessary to conduct the life in a ry 
manner agreeable to God, nevertheless those powers are not lost or ^ 7 
destroyed, as far as there is in them vitality and strength to call * 

vital acts and motions. Therefore, they pursue another 
ourse of life, manifestly different from the former." Concupis-, 
;ence is, therefore, predicated along with the want of original 
righteousness; and the following position is taken as opposed to< 
the Papists: QUEN. (II, 135): " Original Sin, formally considered, 
consists not in a mere want of rectitude which should exist, or a 
want of concreated righteousness, but also in a state of illegality, 3 
or an approach, contrary to the divine Law, to a forbidden object; 
which, in one word, is called a depraved concupiscence. " "Orig 
inal Sin is, therefore, a depravity negative and positive: negative,^ 
without the good which should exist; positive, desirous of the evil \ 

! / / 


which should not exist, i. e., concupiscence itself." The positive 
depravity is thus more particularly defined. QUEN. (II, 136): 
Original Sin is called a positive depravity, not accurately and 
according to philosophical abstraction, according to which every 
positive entity is a good created by God, but according to the lati 
tude used by theologians, and that (1) denominatively, as far as it 
includes a subjective positive act; (2) formally, as far as, besides 
the act in which the privation is inherent, and besides the want of 
that original righteousness which ought to exist, it involves also 
an inclination, and a wickedness directly opposite to original 

The particular parts of Original Sin are then more specifically thus 
described by BR. (406-408): " In respect of the intellect, Original Sin 
implies a total want of spiritual light, so that it cannot know God 
aright, nor perfectly prescribe in what way He should be worshiped, 
nor embrace with a firm assent the things which have been divinely 
revealed; at the same time, also, there is a proneness of the intel 
lect to form rn-li :iml false judgments concerning spiritual things; 
even also in those things which lie open to the light of nature, there 
is a certain impotency in the knowledge of God and the government 
of life. In respect of the will, Original Sin consists in a want of origi 
nal holiness, or of the ability to love God above all things, to 
perform what the intellect has dictated aright, and to restrain the 
appetite in a proper manner; also, on the contrary, in that the 
will is inclined to sinful acts. In respect of the sensuous appetite, there 
is a want of the obedience that is duetto the higher faculties, and a 
rushing, as if by some impulse, contrary to them, into those things 
which are agreeable to the senses, although prohibited by the divine 
Law; the decision of reason either not having been waited for, or 
having been rejected." 

[11] CONF. AUG. II. " They teach that, since the fall of Adam, 
all men who are begottenjn the natural way are born with sin (i. e. ) 
without the fear of God, or faith in God, and with concupiscence; 
and that this disease, or original fault, is truly sin, condemning and 
causing now, also, eternal death to those who are not born again 
by Baptism and the Holy Spirit." See AP. CONF. II, 38, 41. 
FORM. CONC., Sol. Decl. I, 6. "This evil Dr. Luther was accus 
tomed sometimes to call the sin of our nature or person; by which 
he meant that, although a man should not think, speak, or do any 
evil (which, indeed, since the fall of our first parents, is. impossible 
for human nature, in this life), nevertheless, the nature and person 
of man are sinful (i. e.) that they are wholly and completely in 
fected, poisoned, and corrupted before God, by original sin, in their 

7 / / 


very inmost parts, and the most profound recesses of the heart; and 
in consequence of this corruption and fall of our first parents, the 
nature and person of man are accused and condemned by the Law 
of God, so that we are by nature the children of wrath, the slaves 
of death and damnation, unless we be liberated from these evils, 
and be preserved through the benefits which flow from the merits 
of Christ." 

QUEN. (II, 60): "This concupiscence, denoting the propensity 
to evil which is implanted in the depraved nature, even as it re 
mains jn_the regenerate, is truly sin, because the definition of sin 
suits it. Therefore Paul, Rom. 7, calls it sin fourteen times, not 
by metonymy, that it is only the punishment of the first sin, and 
the cause of subsequent actual transgression, as the Papists teach, 
but properly and formally, because it is truly sin, whence also the 
Apostle names it the law of sin warring against the law of the mind, 
an evil, a sinning sin." 

[12] BR. (420): The consequences of Original Sin are various 
evils: In respect of the soul, a want of freedom of the will in spiritual 
things, and an infirmity of the will in things natural^ actual trans- 
gressions, multiplied both in kind and number; a want of grace, 
and, on the contrary, the anger of God. In respect of the body, dis-_ 
eases and other troubles, with temporal death ; finally, also, eternal 
death or damnation." It having been urged that Original Sin in 
itself is not an adequate cause of eternal death, CAL. (XII, 229, 
sqq.) answers: "That not all infected with Original Sin are con 
demned, is due not to the fact that original sin is not of itself an 
adequate or sufficient cause of condemnation, but that by faith 
some obtain forgiveness, as of actual, so also of Original Sin. The 
passage John 3: 18 being cited to sliow that unbelief is the only 
damning sin, he answers: "Unbelief condemns formally; but sins 
condemn materially. Unbelief is the cause of our not being freed 
from the condemnation, from which by faith we can be freed. * * 
Luther s marginal gloss on John 15: 22 does not teach the contrary. 
For he says that Original Sin has not been blotted out except by 
Christ s acquiring for it expiation through His merit; aye, he adds 
that original sin even now condemns those who do not believe. 
Cf. GERHARD VIII, 26 sqq. QUEN. II, 62: "Original Sin is in 
itself, and of its own nature, deserving of divine wrath and eternal 
death, although in fact accidentally, viz. f through and because of 
Christ s merit, apprehended by faith, it does not condemn the re 
generate. That is : In itself, it is always a damnable sin, although 
in the regenerate, it has lost, because of Christ s merit, the power 
to damn, Rom. 8:1. Here the Apostle does not say that there is 



nothing damnable in the regenerate, or those who are in Christ 
Jesus, but that there is no /cardx^//^ i. e., nothing which would 
actually bring damnation. 

[13] When it is asserted, concerning Original Sin, that it is in-_ 
hcrcnt naturally, two thing s arc hcrcliy intended : 

(1) QUEN. (II, 62): "That it is not a mere accident, lightly and 
externally attached, but internally and intimately inhering, and 

therefore called, H^b. 12: 1, the easily besetting sin 
that it is an accident connate (ffw^^wn*) and natural; that although 
it does not arise from the nature as such, yet it is produced together 
with it, or is connate with it; that it is not any temporary and 
transient accident, but is fixed and permanent. In order to keep 
aloof from such a view (the Pelagian), the Dogmaticians express 
themselves in forcible language concerning human depravity. Thus 
CHMN. (Doc. Th., I, 259): " There are not a few who so extenuate 
Original Sin, that they pretend that it is a corruption of certain 
accidents only, and that the substance itself of man, and especially 
of the soul, exists after the Fall, and remains upright, uninjured, 
and pure : so that this quai impediment having been removed, the 
substance itself of man, after the Fall, and before the renewing of 
the Spirit, by, in, or of itself, has certain spiritual powers or facul 
ties which it employs of itself to begin to complete spiritual actions. 
. . . The true and constant sentiment of the Church must be op 
posed to, clearly explained and keenly defended against, these 
philosophical and Pelagian vagaries, . . . viz. , that the nature or 
substance in man, since the Fall and before regeneration, is by no 
means upright, pure, or sound; but that the very -nature or sub 
stance of man, and especially of the human soul, is truly corrupt, 
vitiated, and depraved, and that not lightly or only superficial^ , 
or even in some part only; but that the whole mass (if I may so 
speak) of the substance, or of human nature, and especially of the 
soul, is corrupted and vitiated with the deepest and extreme de 
pravity. . . . This corruption or depravity is nothing abstract, nor 
an idea outside of the substance or nature of man, but is inherent 
in our very nature or substance, and like a spiritual poison has. 
infected, pervaded, and diffused itself far and wide throughout all 
the members of our whole substance or human nature/* The 
position of Flacius, viz. , That Original Sin is the very substance 
itself of man or the human soul, arose from a misapprehension 
or an overstraining of these views. Therefore the expression, 
inherent in our nature, signifies 

(2) QUEN. (II, 62): That Original Sin is not the very substance 
of man . . but that which inheres in it after the manner of an 


accident; for it is distinguished in the Scriptures, Rom. 7: 20, from 
the essence itself of man, ancLis called indwelling gin; now, as an 
inhabitant or guest is not the same as the house, so neither is sin 
the same as man. 

FORM. CONC. (Sol. Dec. 1: 33): Although Original Sin has in 
fected and corrupted the whole nature of man, like some spiritual 
poison and horrible leprosy, so that now, in our corrupt nature, 
these two, viz. , Nature alone and Original Sin alone, cannot be dis 
tinctly pointed out to view; yet the corrupt nature or the substance 
of corrupt man, body and soul, or man himself created by God, in 
whom original sin dwells (by reason of which the nature, substance, 
and indeed the whole man is corrupted), and original sin itself, 
which dwells in the nature or essence of man and corrupts it, are 
not one and the same. . . . The distinction, therefore, between 
our nature, as it was created by God and is preserved to this day, 
in which Original Sin dwells, and Original Sin, which dwells in our 
nature, must be retained." And this is the reason why Original 
Sin is called accidental. FORM. CONC. (Sol. Dec. I, 57): "Since, 
therefore, this is an unchangeable truth, that whatever is, is either 
a substance or an accident, namely, either something subsisting by 
itself, or something elsewhere derived and adhering in a substance, 
... we must assuredly admit . . . that sin is not a substance, 
but an accident." To this the FORM, adds (I, 60): "When it is 
inquired what kind of an accident Original Sin is, that is another 
question. No philosopher, no papist, no sophist, yea, no human 
reason, can exhibit a true solution of this question; its explication 
is to be sought from the Holy Scriptures alone." The expressions 
which have been employed by CIIMN. are sustained by the follow 
ing distinction (Sol. Dec. I, 51): "In order to avoid logomachies, 
terms of an equivocal signification should be carefully and clearly 
explained. When, e. g., it is said: God creates the nature of 
man, by the term, nature, the very substance, body and soul is 
meant. But often a property or condition of anything (whether it 
be taken in good part or bad) is called the nature of that thing; as 
when it is said, it is the nature of the serpent to strike and to infect 
with poison (here not the substance, but the badness of the serpent 
is expressed); in this sense Dr. Luther uses the term nature, when 
he says that sin and to sin is the nature of corrupt man. 

[14] FORM. CONC. (Sol. Dec. I, 7): "And at the present time, 
even in this corruption of nature, God does not create sin in us, 
but, together with the nature which God creates and effects in men, 
original sin is propagated by natural generation, by seed corrupted 
by sin, from father and mother. 


Here the question naturally presents itself, in what manner this 
corrupt nature perpetuates itself, and "Whether the soul is propa 
gated by traduction (ex traduce}, i. e., whether, as in natural gen 
eration, the flesh of the offspring is substantially transmitted from 
the seed of the parent, the soul of the child is, in like manner, also 
transmitted from the soul of the parent ? " On this subject CHMX. 
(Loc. Th. I, 286) says: "Luther, in his discussions, concludes 
that he wishes tojiffirm nothing publicly concerning that question,_ 
but that he privately held the opinion of traduction. It is suffi 
cient for us to know concerning the efficient cause, that our first 
parents by their Fall merited that, such as they were after the Fall, 
both in body and mind, such also all their posterity should be 
procreated. But how the soul contracts that sin we need not 
know, since the Holy Spirit has not been pleased to disclose this in 
certain and clear Scripture testimonies." 

HUTT. also (328) says: "In consequence of this disagreement 
among the Dogmaticians, it has come to pass, even in our day, 
that there are not wanting theologians even of the highest rank 
who, in regard to this very question, would rather keep silent 
altogether (en-^v) than to assert anything positively either within 
or beyond the express authority of Scripture." But he adds, also: 
" If any of our brethren should ask which opinion we think most 
accordant with truth, we fearlessly answer that we precisely accord 
with the opinion of Luther, and hold it to be consonant with Scrip 
ture, namely, that the human soul is propagated by traduction;. 
so that, just as everything else produces its like, a lion begetting a 
lion, a horse begetting a horse, so also man begets man, and not 
alone the flesh, or the body, but also the soul is propagated essen 
tially from its parents." (319). . . . QUEN. (II, 62): "As the 
soul was the first to exhibit sin (nparov (Se^/cw), so original sin 
itself, through the medium of the soul, in which it most deeply 
inheres, is propagated per tradvcem." (Fora fuller discussion of 
this subject see 20, Note 8. ) 

[HUTT. (329) further shows that as soon as the opinion of a 
new creation of souls is admitted, one of three things follows, viz., 
either that the soul, as immediately created by God, is free from 
sin, or that it is polluted by sin, or that it is defiled by union with 
the body. But if God creates it sinful, or unites it with a body 
where the inevitable consequence is that it contracts sin, He be 
comes the author of sin. On the other hand, the entrance of the 
soul into the world in a state of integrity is contradicted by the ex 
press testimony of Scripture concerning natural depravity.] 

[15] It is more specifically described as follows. QUEN. (II, 



62) : In Original Sin there are four things worthy of attention, to 

each of which a certain limit of duration has been prefixed. (1) 
An inflammable material (fames, tinder) habitually inhering, or a 
root. (2) The sense of this tendency or root._ (3) The dominion 
ojfjt; and, finally, (4) Guilt. The last is removed in regeneration 
and justification; dominion in s anctification (not at once, but 
gradually and successively, because sanctification is not complete 
in this life); the sense of it is removed in death; the material 
itself, not in the incineration (since not the body, but the soul, is 
the first and immediate subject of sin), but in the dissolution of 
the soul and body." 

AP. COXF. (II, 35): Luther always wrote that Baptism re 
moves the guilt of Original Sin, although the material of sin, as they 
call it, viz., concupiscence, remains. He added, also, concerning 
its material character, that the Holy Spirit, being given in Bap 
tism, begins to mortify the propensity to sin, and creates new 
motions in man. Augustine also speaks in the same manner, and 
says that sin is remitted in Baptism, not that it may not exist, but 
that it may not be imputed. He openly confesses that it exists, 
that is, that sin remains, although it is not imputed. 

[On the other hand, the Council of Trent maintained that con 
cupiscence, in the regenerate, is not properly sin. CHEMNITZ 
answers (Ex. Cone. Trid., Pr. Ed., 108): "It is not a good 
thing, as Paul shows in Rom. 7, in many words. Nor is it an 
adiaphoron, or indifferent matter, Rom. 7: 21. It is certain, 
therefore, that it is an evil. . . . This^original concupiscence is 
forgiven, weakened and diminished in Baptism: yet not so as to be 
suddenly removed and altogether extinguished, as no longer to 
exist; for as long as the regenerate live here there must be a law 
of sin in their members. But the remaining concupiscence docs 
not hinder them from pleasing God, and being heirs of everlasting 
life. Nevertheless this is not because this concupiscence in the re 
generate has been rendered holy or indifferent by means of Bap 
tism. But it is of God s grace, that such an evil dwelling in the 
flesh of the regenerate is, for Christ s sake, not imputed to them 
for condemnation. "1 

27. Of Actual Sins. 

Original Sin is the ground and source of all actual trans 
gressions. By these we are to understand, however, not only 
sins which manifest themselves in outward acts, but also those 
which depend upon purely internal acts of man. HUTT. (Loc. 


c. Th., 346): " Actual transgression is every act, whether ex 
ternal or internal, which conflicts with the Law of God." [i] 
They are numerous and diversilied, and are divided, accord 
ing to QUEN. (II, 65), in the following manner : 

I. "In respect of an internal defective cause in the agents, into 
voluntary and involuntary. A voluntary sin is an act by 
which man transgresses the divine Law, by a deliberate voli- 

Jtipn, contrary to the dictates of conscience. Involuntary sin ia 
an act inconsistent with the Law, committed without sure 
knowledge or a deliberate purpose of the will." Involuntary 
sin is accordingly divided into sins of ignorance and of infirm 
ity. [2] 

II. "In respect of the person sinning, 1, into our own sins and 
the sins of others. Our own sins are those which we ourselves 
contract, either by doing what has been prohibited, or by omit 
ting to do what has been commanded. Those are called the 
sins of others, which are indeed perpetrated by others, but in 
which we share or participate ; [3] 2, into venial and mortal. 
Venial sins are those which, as soon as they are committed, 
and at the very moment when they are perpetrated, have par- 
don connected with them by an indissoluble bond. HfortaT, 

are those which produce spiritual death at the very mo- 
ment whenjbhey are committed." [4] 

III. "In respect of the material in which (in qua) they are 
committed, they are divided into internal and external. In 
ternal are those of the heart ; external are those of word and 
deed." [5] 

IV. "In respect of the material about which (circa quam) they 
are committed ; into sins against the first table immediately 
and directly, and those against the second table, i. e., against 
God, against a neighbor, and against the person of the trans 
gressor himself." 

V. "In respect of the sinful act itself: into sins of commission 
and of omission. .Sins of commission are tEbse which consist 
in positive acts which come into conflict with a negative pre- 
cept. Sins of omission consist in the refusal or omission of acts 
which are prescribed by a positive precept." (En. 440.) [6] 

VI. "In respect of the effect : into sins which cry out for pun 
ishment, and those which do not. Of the former kind are 


vicious acts which provoke God to vengeance, although men 
are silent or only connive at them. The latter are those which 
God endures through His long-suffering, and either postpones 
the punishment, or, if they have been committed by the re- 
" J generate, forgives." [7] 

VII. "In respect of their adjuncts, sins are divided into, 1, 

t ^more or less grievous (on account of the greater or less fault or 

^ wickedness connected with them); [8] 2, into secret a.nd mani- 

jest ; [9] 3, into dead and living. Dead sins are those which 
v indeed remain in us, but are "not known as sins, or certainly 

; S ^ not considered as great as they really are. Living sins are 

* those which are known to be such, and rage even after the 
> knowledge of the Law, Rom. 7: 8, 9 ; 4, into remaining and re- 
\ mitted sins. A remaining sin is that which yet oppresses the 

sinner by its guilt and weight. A remitted sin is that whose 

guilt has been removed from the sinner, by the grace of God, 

- for the sake of the merit of Christ ; 5, into sins connected with 

\ hardness of heart and blindness of mind, and those unconnected 

\ with these; [10] 6, into pardonable r and r unpardonable sins. TJF 

I theTatter class there is only the sin against the Holy TJhost. 

5- [11] This sin consists in a malicious denial of, a hostile at- 

v^tack upon, and a horrid blasphemy of divine truth, evidently 

* known and approved by conscience, and an obstinate and 

i |3 finally persevering rejection of all the means of salvation. 

< HOLL. (556), Matt. 12: 31, 32 ; Mark 3: 28, 29 ; Luke 12: 10 ; 

i Heb. 6: 4-6 ; i(f: 26, 29." 
: A ! i 

[1] CAL. (V, 311): "Actual sin is a departure from the Law, 
jby which human thoughts and actions proceeding from the flesh 
% transgress the divine Law given by Moses, and thus it exposes the 
1 transgressor to temporal and eternal punishment. 

HOLL. (537): "Actual sin is a turning away, by a human act 
either of commission or omission, from the rule of the divine Law, 
incurring responsibility for guilt and liability to punishment. 

QUEN. (II, 63): "The words act and actual in this place 
are used not strictly for external acts only, and sins of commission, 
but with such i latitude that they embrace also internal vicious em<>- 
Uons, both primary^ and secondary, and also sins of omission. 77 

" In the Holy Scriptures, actual sins are called works of the flesh, 
Gal. 5: 19; unfruitful works of darkness, Enh. 5: 11; deeds of the old man, 
Col. 3:9; dead works, Heb. 6: 1 ; 9: 14; unlawful deeds, 2 Peter 2: 8." 


V cN 



&* & tf *^~ >**--* ^Jf -tJT^ ^* 



(a) QUEN. 

ry, not because it is with the wiU 
>luntary violations of duty would 
d here as opposed to that which 

iconsiderately (a7rp<xu/>rr). (6) 

<^-SS ^ 


viewed both in respect of conscience, 
le will. Sin against conscience is 
gither against a correct conscience, 
omission, does not follow, but 
e when it agrees with the divine 
science, when a man, either by 
from the dictate of conscience 
ibable^conscience, when any one is 
te of the intellect, which urges, 
ling should be done or omitted 
conscience, when any one 
Inch he is in doubt whether it 
iton/ sin, viewed in respect of the 
The one, kind is that which is 

a will altogether free. ! //> nthrr 
he jiower lit a will inthieiieed by 
"dangers. Matt. 26: 70, 72, 14; 
57, 58, 60; John 18: 25," 27." 
II, 70): " 1. Sins of ignorance, 
generate, in consequence of the 
been yet entirely removed by 
2. Sins of infirmity, which 
ny certain purpose of sinning, 
nd, which have suddenly arisen 
# inlawful words or deeds are the 
ncy, and contrary to the purpose 

of the will, Gen. 9: 21; \: 5; 18: 12; Numbers 20: 11, 12; Acjs 
15: 39; Rom~7: 15; Gal. 2: 12, "l3, 14; 6:1." 

[3] HOLL. (552): ^ur own sin is a vicious act, produced by a 
real influence of our own : the sin of another imputed to us, is an 
nlawful act, to the production of which we concur indeed by no 
real influence, yet by an efficacious intention, so that it can be 
, Justly imputed to us. (He concurs, by efficacious intention, in 
the sin of another, who commands, consults, consents, connives at, 
x does not oppose, or give information, and thus is the moral cause 
the sin of another), Eph. 5: 7 and 11; 1 Tim. 5: 22; 2 John 11; 
ev. 18:4." 
[4] HOLL. (547): (a) Venial sm_is_every Jnvpluntary sin in ,thfi 

7 ^ ^. 

^ " L n 

>rp * 




/ X 

f**stsf <H/^t-vi. / Z*. 

grievous (on accoui 
Ij wickedness connected with the 
1^L> [9] 3, into dead and livir 
v indeed remain in us, but are 

"/ ^ > 

: r not considered as great as tl 
^| * those which are known to be 
\ knowledge of the Law, Rom. f 
mitted sins. A remaining sin : 
sinner by its guilt and weigh 


vicious acts which provoke Gc 
are silent or only connive at th< 
God endures through His long 
the punishment, or, if they ha 

i generate, forgives." [7] 

VII. "In respect of their ad^ 

^more or 


j Blllllt/l UJ 1LO ^Uliu clliv-i n oigi 

guilt has been removed from 
for the sake of the merit of C 
y hardness of heart and blindne 
? \j with these; [10] 6, into pardm 
^Sx. 4 the latter class there is only 1 
j [11] This sin consists in a 
\ x tack upon, and a horrid bias] 
known and approved by cc 
si3 finally persevering rejection 
j HOLL. (556), Matt. 12: 31, 32 
Heb. 6: 4-6 ; 10: 26, 29." 

[1] CAL. (V, 311): " Actua" 
y which human thoughts and 

. Z 



transgress the divine Law given by Moses, and thus it exposes the 
1 transgressor to temporal and eternal punishment. 
JL HOLL. (537): "Actual sin is a turning away, by a human act 
^either of commission or omission, from the rule of the divine Law, 
\ incurring responsibility for guilt and liability to punishment. 

QUEN. (II, 63): The words act and * actual in this place 
^ are used not strictly for external acts only, and sins of commission^ 
but with such latitude that they embrace also internal vicious emo 
tions, both primary and secondary, and also sins of omission/ 1 

In the Holy Scriptures, actual sins are called works of the flesh, , 
Gal. 5: 19; unfruitful works of darkness, Ejah. 5: 11; deeds of the old man, 
Col. 3: 9; dead works, Heb. 6: 1 ; 9: 14; unlawful deeds, 2 Peter 2: 8." 

c-e- f*7 


/-& v^r/^^ 

,^**^^^ <~/**~^^ 

/ ,* . /M 


[2] Here thefse further remarks are to be added: (a) QUEN. (I 

Sin is here called voluntary, not because it is with the wiU 
or in the will, for thus also involuntary violations of duty would 
be yoluntary; but it is understood here as opposed to that which 
is done through ignorance and inconsiderately (dTrpoaHpfrur)." (&) 
< HOLL. (542) : Voluntary sin is viewed bothln respect of conscience, 
" and in respect of the purpose of the mil. Sinjigainst conscience is 
fourfold. For it is committed either against a correct conscience, 
when a man, either by action or omission, does not follow, but 
^ .despises the dictate of conscience when it agrees with the divine 
.01 Law; or against an erroneous conscience, when a man, either by 
* faction or omission, turns away from the dictate of conscience . 
"^imbued in error; or against a probable conscience, when any one is ^ 


delinquent contrary to the dictate of the intellect, which urges, 
)r probable reasons, that something should be done or omitted 
d ^ow at this place; or against a doubtful conscience, when any one 
J^ I does or omits that, concerning which he is in doubt whether it 
^Mshould be done or omitted. Voluntary sin, viewed in respect of the ^ 
| 5 k purpose of the will, is twofold. The one. kind is that which is \ 
^committed from mere malice and a will altogether free. The other S5 
is that which is committed under the power of a will influenced by | 
force or fear, and by surrounding dangers. Matt. 26: 70, 72, ^4; ^ 
Mark 14: 68, 70, 7J ; Luke 22: 57, 58, 60; John 18: 25, 27." J 
(c) Involuntary sins are (QuEN., II, 70): " 1. Sins of ignorance, ^ 
which overtake the unwilling regenerate, in consequence of the ^ 
darkness of the mind, which has not been yet entirely removed by ^ 

illumination of the Holy Spirit. 2. Sins of infirmity, which 
overtake the regenerate without any certain purpose of sinning. 
^Such are sinful emotions of the mind, which have suddenly arisen 
KTwithout their will, and whatever unlawful words or deeds are the 
result of inadvertence or precipitancy, and contrary to the purpose 
of the will, Gen. 9: 21; Ifi: 5; 18: 12; Numbers 20: 11, 12; Acjs 
15: 39; Rom~7: 15; Gal. 2: 12, "l3, 14; 6:1" 

_}] HOLL. (552): 7?ur own sin is a vicious act, produced by a 
real influence of our own : the sin of another imputed to us, is an 
nlawful act, to the production of which we concur indeed by no 
real influence, yet by an efficacious intention, so that it can be 
justly imputed to us. (He concurs, by efficacious intention, in 
the sin of another, who commands, consults, consents, connives at, 
x does not oppose, or give information, and thus is the moral cause 
|& the sin of another), Eph. 5: 7 and 11; 1 Tim. 5: 22; 2 John 11; 
SRev. 18:4." 
^ [4] HOLL. (547): (a) " Venial swjs^yeryjn voluntary sin in the 





<w-e fi&sv-t am. 



regenerate, which neither removes the indwelling grace of the Holy ">d*7A, 
Spirit, nor extinguishes faith, but, in the moment in which it is^2d /v 
committed, has pardon connected with it by an indissoluble bond, -^/^ 
The distinction of sin into mortal and venial does not arise 
the desert of sin, for every sin, of itself, and by its own nature, in 
a court of law is damnable; but (1) From the different conditions 
of the subject, or the person sinning. For a venial sin exists in the 
regenerate, a mortal sin in those who either never were regenerated, 
or, having been overcome by the predominating power of the flesh, 
fell from a state of grace. (2) From the estimate which God has 
made in the Gospel; because God, a reconciled and gracious Father, 
does not impute to the regenerate sins of infirmity and ignorance 
for guilt and punishment. (3) From the event. A mortal s/n pre 
cipitates the sinner into a state of wrath, death, and condemnation, 
so that, if he should die in this state, and without repentance, he 
would be certainly condemned; but a venial sm, because it has 
pardon as an inseparable attendant, can consist with the grace of 
God and saving faith. " (Id. 551): " The causes of forgiveness or 
non-imputation are: the compassion of God, the satisfaction and 
intercession of Christ ( 1 .lo})ii 2: 1, 2; Hoin. S : 1 j. the efficacious 
operation of the Holy Spirit, and the daily penitence of the regen 
erate. (Id. 547): (o) 1 A mortal 6-m is that by which the regen- ^ 
erate, having been overcome by the flesh, and thus not remaining ^3 
in a regenerate state, transgress the divine Law by a deliberate jmr- 
pjTse_pj the will, contrary to the dictates of conscience, and thereby j 
lose saving faith, reject the gracious influence of the Holy Spirit, ^ 
and cast themselves into a state of wrath, death and condemnation. 

[5] HOLL. (552): "ms of the heart are depraved thoughts and 
desires which are cherished within the human breast; sms of the /?ps ^A^ 
are wicked words and gestures expressed by the lips; sins of deed \9 
are actions which are performed contrary to the divine Law, by an 
external effort of the members. Matt. 5: 21, 22." j 

[6] HOLL. (552): "$ws of commission are positive acts, by which 
the negative precepts of God are violated. Sins of omission are the ^ 
neglect of acts prescribed by the affirmative precepts of God, James 
4: 16, 17. Note. Although there is oftentimes, in a sin of omission, \| 
a certain illicit positive act, either an internal act of the will, as, for \* 
example, to will to omit what had been commanded, or an external I 
act, as an operation by which any one is hindered from that which ^ 
he ought to do; yet such a positive act is not always or necessarily ^ 
required, but the mere fact that one does not do what is com- i 
manded is sin." X 

[7] HOLL. (553): "Outcrying sins are the following, the Scrip- 



//frtSj -//Juux-X^z*, &&stf-& /X-e. C-^*^ *^ /&. &&<oc&4^ */ CSwl**^. 

tures being witness: 1. The fratricrae committed by Cain, Gen. 4:: ***^ 
10. 2. The sins of the Sodomites, Gen. 18: 20. 3. The oppression^*" 
of the Israelites in Egypt, Exod. 3:9; of widows and orphans, 
Exod. 22 : 22. 4. The denial of wages due to hirelings, James 5:4." 
[8] HOLL. (454): One sm ? s more grievous than another: 1. In 
respect to the efficient cause or person sinning. A Christian sins 
more grievously than a heathen, though he commit the same crime. 
2. In respect of the impelling cause. He who commits adultery 
with his neighbor s wife, for the sake of gratifying his lust, sins 
more grievously than he who steals when impelled by hunger. 3. 
In respect of the object. He is more guilty who slays his father 
than he who slays an enemy. 4. In respect of the Law. He sins 
more grievously who violates the first table of the Law, than he- ^\^ V 
who violates the second. 5. In respect to the effect. That sin is^< Jfc ^ 
regarded as the more grievous which is attended with the greater 

[9] HOLL. (554): "A secret sin is that which is either unknown 
to the person himself who sins, or which is known only to him who- 
* ^^ sins, and a few others who wish it suppressed. An open sin is that ^ 
T $ M w hi cn has become known to many, and, if it be connected with 
V ( J* offence to others, is called a scandal. A scandal is an open sin 
^ ^^vwhich furnishes an occasion of sinning to those who know it. It 
l H3f I is usually divided into given or active scandal, and received or passive. 
^ ? The former is an open sin which is the occasion of sinning to 
^l /M( others; the latter is a word or deed of another, not in itself evil, by 
^ i V w hich others are offended, or take occasion to sin." 
jg j w [10] HOLL. (555): Sin, connected with hardness of heart, is 
the most atrocious of all^Dy which the mind of man, having been\^ 
polluted, remains averse to the Word of God and blind; the will, s x 
\ confirmed in wickedness, resists the Holy Spirit; the appetite in- i 

rrr,^ * * i 

v dulges in beastly pleasures; and therefore the sinner, _ 

Vr difficulty or not at all corrigible, brings upon himself temporal and\ j 
! /\ eternal punishments. The cause of this hardness is not God, but 
partly the devil, who multiplies evils, blinds the mind, and fills 
the heart with wickedness, 2 Coj. 4:4; Acts 5:3; EDJI. 2:2; partly 
man, who rejects the ordinary means of salvation, and is continu 
ally selling himself to the desire and practice of sin, Ma^t. 13: 15." 
In reference to Exod. 7: 3, HOLL. (492) remarks: God does not 
harden men causatty or effectively, by sending hardness into their 
hearts, but jii<Ui-illy. yxrm/.W/vfy. mn! />*/ fnr*<ikiny than. For the 
act of hardening is a judicial act, by which, on account of anteced 
ent, voluntary, and inevitable wickedness, God justly permits 
man habitually wicked to rush into greater crimes, and withdraws 




His grace from him, and finally delivers him up to the power of 
Satan, by whom he is afterwards driven on into greater sins, until 
He finally cuts him off from the right of the heavenly inheritance." 

[11] QUEN. (II, 74): "The word, Spirit, is not used here with 
respect to essence, as the term is common to the three persons of 
the God-head, but it is used personally, for the third person of the 
Godhead; yet respect being had, not so much to the person itself 
of the Holy Spirit, as if this sin were committed immediately 
against Him, as to His office and blessings, for example, as far as 
He strives to illuminate men through the doctrines of the Gospel. 
. Therefore, the Holy Spirit must here be viewed in relation to 
His office, and the sin is said to be against the Holy Spirit, partly 
in respect of His ministry, and partly in respect of His testimony. 
Rom. 8: 16." 

GRH. (V, 85): The Sin against the Holy Ghost, therefore, is 
an intentional denial of evangelical truth, which baa been acknowl 
edged and approved by conscience, connected with a bold attack 
upon it, and voluntary blasphemy of it. For we must observe 
that this kind of sin was proved against the Pharisees by Christ; 
for, although they were constrained by the force of the truth 
uttered by Him, and were convicted in their consciences by its 
illumination, yet they raged against Him by their wicked impiety, 
to such a degree that they blushed not to ascribe His doctrines and 
miracles to Satan. The epistle to the Hebrews thus describes those 
who sin against the Holy Ghost, that they, having been previously 
illuminated, have also tasted the heavenly gift and been made 
partakers of the Holy Ghost, have tasted also the good Word of 
God, and the powers of the world to come, yet afterwards fall away, 
and thus crucify to themselves afresh the Son of God, and put Him 
to an open shame; also that, by voluntary apostasy, they trample 
under foot the Son of God, and esteem His blood, by which they 
were sanctified, an unholy thing, and do despite unto the spirit of 

QUEN. (II, 82): "The form of the Sin against the Holy Ghost 
consists, (1) In a denial, by a full, free, and unimpeded exercise 
of the will, of evangelical truth, after the Tatter has been evidently 
and sufficiently acknowledged and approved^ .Heb. 6: 4; 10: 26, 
29. (2) In a hostile attack upon the same. Matt. 12: 31, 32. 
(3) In voluntary and atrocious blasphemy. Heb. 10: 26, 29." 
To this the remark is added, however (Ib., p. 83): "That these 
essential requisites of this sin must always be taken conjointly, and 
never separately, and that then that must be called the sin against 
the Holy Ghost, concerning which all these can be conjointly veri 


fied." The following additional description flows from the nature 
of the subject: "Not infants, but adults, commit this sin, who are 
not destitute of the knowledge of the revealed Word of God, but 
who have been illuminated and convicted by conscience of the 
certainty of divine truth, and have fallen from the desire and love 
of it into bitter hatred against it." (HoLL.,561.) To which BR. 
adds (444): "Whether the doctrine had been once approved by 
the assent of divine faith and a public profession, or only so clearly 
perceived that the mind, having been convicted, had nothing which 
it could oppose to it. In the former mode, those apostates sin 
against the Holy Ghost who deny the truth once acknowledged and 
believed, and utter reproaches against it, as Paul describes them, 
Heb. 6: 4. The Pharisees and Scribes belong to the latter class, who 
ever, by their confession, approved of the doctrines of Christ, In 
the meantime, they w r ere so convinced of their truth, from the i 
Scriptures and the miracles of Christ, that they could oppose noth- $ 
ing but reproaches. As adjuncts of this sin, QUEN. (II, 83) adds; j 
" (1) Final impenitence, Heb. 6: 4-6; (2) Absolute irremissibil- 
jty, Matt. 12: 31; Marie 3:*28, 29; Luke 12: 10; (3) Exclusion^" 
from the prayers of believers, 1 JoTin 5: 16." 

HOLL. (564): "It is irremissible, not through any want of 
divine grace, or inadequacy of the atonement of Christ, or any , 

want of the efficacious influence of the Holy Ghost, but on account 
<v^ 4 of a wicked rejection of all the means of grace, and by reason of 

* \ 4 final impenitence. " On the other hand, the sin against the Son of 

Vman is remissible. Ma#. 12: 32; Luke 12: 10. QUEN. (II, 87): 

* ^ 3 " The sin against the Son of man is either a denial of the truth of 

the Gospel already acknowledged concerning the Son of God, who 
became man, resulting from infirmity of the flesh and fear of dan 
ger, but not united with a hostile attack and blasphemy, or an attack or 
! ^blasphemy through ignorance of the truth not acknowledged." 

^ 28. The Freedom of the Will. 

> Since so great a change has taken place in man through the M 
sFall, the question remains to be discussed, What powers to 

v act does he still retain? [1] For, since all these powers are de- * 
pendent upon knowledge and will, it is natural that, so far as^f 
knowledge and will are weakened or lost, these powers to act ^ 
should also thereby suffer. But the question, as to the <S 
powers retained by man, is identical with that as to how far 
freedom of the will (liberum arbitrium) in regard to. his actions 
pertains to him^ [2] As, however, various opinions have 


. /~ 


often been entertained in reference to this liberum arbitrium, 
it is necessary, first of all, that we definitely determine the 
proper significance of this term. If we understand by it the 
will itself^then it cannot be questioned that since the Fall 
this still belongs to man, for without this he would cease to 

be man. [3] In like manner it belongs also to the nature of 
man that neither in his will nor in his acts, neither externally 
nor internally (by instinct), can he be determined by irresisti- 
ble necessity. [4] All this is therefore to be predicated of 
man after the Fall, no less than before it, for all this belongs 
strictly to the essential nature of man, which suffered no 
change through the Fall. But, if we understand by liberum 
arbitrium that power of willing, in virtue of which man can 
act in everything, in good as well as in evil, entirely without 
jiindrance, just as he pleases (" the liberum arbitrium is that 
power of the wiH which, following the judgment of reason, 
enables man most freely to embrace the good and resist the 
evil " (HUTT., Loc. c. Th., 269) ), [5] then it follows, from the 
change that has occurred in man through the Fall> that this 
Cannot now be predicated of him. If this change consists in 
the loss of the divine imageTTTat once follows that man can 
no longer freely choose between good and evil, but has lost 
the power to will and to do that which is good. [6] If, then, 
we would describe more particularly the liberum arbitrium, as 
it exists in fallen man, we must say, that man, in consequence 
of the evil disposition that dwells within him since the Fall, 
is no longer able to will or to do anything really good and 
acceptable to < Jod. vi/.. nothing of all that the Holy Scriptures 
designate and prescribe as such, because all of this can be 
accomplished only under the special influence of the Spirit of 
.God. He is therefore so completely destitute of the liberum 
arbitrium in rebus spiritualibus, [7] that he cannot of his own 
accord even cherish a desire for salvation and a change of his 
present depraved condition. [8] And in this condition all 
that remains to him is liberum <ti-!>!trhnn in nuilix (liberty of 

choice in regard to what is evil), [ >] and Ubrnnn nrbitrimn in 
jrcbus cxtcrnis, [10] jiamely, in all those things which, being_ 
recognizable by the light of reason, are within the reach of 
the natural powers, without needing the aid of a truly good 

disposition. __[]!] 

HUMAN ABILITY. _vf>^^ /^ ^S? ^d 

^ij^e. -T-f- t-Cr t ^ l*** * . T-rr<**~*r f >*JL*. 7 A_* V <&C^9 

[1] GRH. (V, 87): " Connection with the preceding. We have/ 
seen above in what wonderful and miserable ways original sin, like /g ^^ 
poison, has pervaded all the powers of man, how intimately the ^ / ^*/^ 
V corruption arising from it has adhered to human nature, what fT*.pr** 

^^ pestilential fruits that envenomed seed has produced. It remains &i*~rt& 

for us to inquire, what there is yet of strength in man." 

CHMN. (Loc. c. Th., 179): " This is the question, What human <&***. 
powers are there after the Fall to produce obedience to the Law, 
when darkness is in the mind, aversion to God in the will, and in 

the heart rebellion against the Law of God ? And, because not ^ 
only external civil acts are demanded by the Law of God, but a 
perfect and perpetual obedience of the whole human nature, what, 
and how much can the will of man accomplish ? Therefore the 
caption of this section would have been more clearly stated, con 
cerning man s powers, than concerning the freedom of the will. 

[2] QUEN. (II, 170): -"These powers remaining in man after 
i \ the. Fall are otherwise called the freedom of the will. 

GRH. (V, 87), thus explains the term liberum arbitrium, or 
freedom of the will : These powers of man are best judged of 
from the rational soul by which he is distinguished from the 
brutes, and is constituted a distinct species. Two faculties belong 
to the rational soul, viz. , mind and will : the former performs its 
office by knowing, discriminating, reflecting, judging; the latter 
by choosing and rejecting. From the concurrence of both, that is 
produced which is commonly called the free determination, which 
is a faculty of the mind and will, so that the determination belongs 
to the mind and the free belongs to the will." Therefore HOLL. 
.(573) : " The proper and adequate seat of free determination is the 
hvill. But the intellect concurs antecedently, and by way of 
^preparation (napaanevaaTiKus). in the execution of the free deter- 

QUEN. (II, 170): "The term free determination is not given 

so many words in the Scriptures; yet is found for substance, and 
in equivalent terms, in Deut. 30: 19; Josh. 24: 15; 1 Cor. 7: 37; 
>hil. 5: 14;feeb. 10: 26; 1 Pet. 5: 2." 

[3] CHMN. (Loc. c. Th., 182): " There is great diversity among 
ecclesiastical w r riters, some affirming, others denying the freedom 
of the will. Even the same writer, in different places, seems often 
times to express opposite sentiments on this subject, sometimes 
affirming and sometimes denying it. This diversity cannot be 
more readily settled than by a grammatical explanation of the 
word. For, if the term, free will, be used in the most common 
acceptation, it signifies nothing more than, (1) that the man 



possesses it is rational, or has mind and choice; (2) that besides 
natural emotions and actions, concerning which there is no delib 
eration of mind or choice of will, a man has voluntary emotions, to 
the exercise of which the judgment of the mind and the inclination 
of the will concur; (3) and that in virtues and vices, in order that 
actions may be called either good or bad, an intelligent mind is 
required and a will which either yields to or resists the judgment." 

HUTT. (Loc. c. Th., 267): "Sometimes the term will, or 
4 choice is employed to designate the other faculty of the soul, 
indeed the very substance of the will itself, whose function is sim 
ply that of willing. Thus regarded, scarcely any one will deny free 
will to man, unless he dare assert that man is totally destitute oi 
this faculty of the soul. The absurdity of this is, indeed, deserv 
edly repudiated by all, inasmuch as no faculty or power of the soul 
can be ignored without ignoring the whole substance of the soul 
itself; for this is itself nothing else than what its faculties are, and 
when one faculty perishes it must itself expire." GRH. (V, 100): 
" The question is not whether the essence of the will itself has sur- 
vived the Fall, for this we emphatically maintain, viz. , that man 
has lost not his will, bufr the soundness of itT"" 

[4] GRH. (V, 87): "Liberty is assigned to choice in the first 
place, in respect of its mode of action, because it is such that the 
will as far as it is such, acts freely, i. e., it is not forced or violently 
hurried along by an external motion, nor does it act alone by natural 
instinct, but either embraces, or rejects something of its own accord, 
or from an inner principle of movement. In this sense, free and 
voluntary are synonymous; and to say that the will is not free, is 
the same as if any one would say, that that which is warm is with 
out warmth. That is called freedom from compulsion, according to 
which it happens that the will cannot be forced to do anything 
contrary to its inclination. Also freedom from necessity, as far as 
necessity is employed in the sense of force and violence. Others 
call it interior -liberty, by which the will of man is moved voluntarily, 
freely, without coercion, by a power implanted and with capacity 
to choose, and has within itself the principle of its own motion. 
By others it is called liberty in the subject. This liberty, since it is a 
natural and essential property, given to the will by God, has not 
been lost by the Fall. The substance of man has not perished; 
therefore, neither has the rational soul; therefore neither the will, 
nor the essential liberty of the will. The will is an essential power 
of the soul, and the soul is nothing else than the powers or essen 
tial faculties themselves. Therefore while the soul remains, its 
essential powers, intellect and will, also remain. On the other 


hand, the power of free and uncoerced volition is essential to the 
will; therefore, as long as the will remains, this power also remains. 
In this sense and respect we firmly believe, and emphatically de 
clare, that the will of man has remained free even after the Fall." 
QUEN. (II, 171) makes a distinction between freedom from violence 
and constraint, and freedom from inward necessity, and remarks: 
" Freedom from violence is common to man with the brutes; but 
man has freedom from necessity in common with God and angels. 
The following distinction also deserves a place here: "An intelli 
gent nature, that is at the same time infinite and divine, possesses 
freedom of the will in the most excellent and perfect manner; finite, 
or angelic and human nature, in a more imperfect manner. 

[5] HUTT. (Loc. c., 268): " Sometimes the term will, or 
choice, is understood to signify the capacity of determining freely 
to choose that which is good and freely to avoid that which is evil." 
In this respect, it is very properly denied that free will has re 
mained in man since the Fall. 

GRH. (V, 98): Free will in man before the Fall was that fac- 
ulty of the reason and will by virtue of which he was able either to~ 
sin or not to suiT 7 " 

QUEN. (II, 175): "The form of free choice consists in the indif 
ference of the will, both that which has respect to specification as 
well as that which has respect to the exercise of the act; that is, it 
consists in such indifference and freedom that the will is not neces 
sarily determined to one thing, but, all the requisites to action being 
placed before it in accordance with its own liberty, it can do either 
this or that, can choose one and reject the other, which is freedom 
of specification (or specific freedom); can either act or not act, which 
is freedom of action (or active freedom). This liberty is also called 
liberty of action from the necessity of immutability, which is exercised 
when one acts without being controlled by violence or coercion, at 
the prompting of an internal impulse that holds itself immovably 
to its purpose." 

[6] GRH. (V, 98): If the question be concerning the liberty of 
rectitude, or the power of deciding either way, of choosing or re 
jecting either good or evil, we maintain that this has perished. 
For, after through sin the image of God was lost, at the same time 
also the power to choose the good was lost (for it was part of the 
divine image) : and, because through sin man was not only de 
spoiled but also miserably corrupted, therefore, in the place of that 
liberty, there succeeded the unbridled impulse to evil, so that since 
the Fall, in men corrupt and not yet regenerate (either corrupt by 
their own will, as our first parents, or bom from corrupt parents,. 

+ ^&*9t. 

as all their posterity), the will is free only towards that which is 
evil, since such corrupt and not yet regenerate men are able to do <j ^ 
nothing but sin. 

(Id., V, 100): "Understanding the term liberty as describing N! 
the free power and faculty of choosing the good and rejecting the 
evil, that was possessed by Adam, we maintain that Luther was, 
perfectly correct in saying, Free will is a title without the thing 
itself, or a thing with nothing but a title. 

[7] QUEN. (II, 177): " By spiritual things are understood such 
emotions and actions as are prescribed by the Law and the Gospel, 
and can be produced only by the motion and action of the Spirit 
>f God, so that they are the true knowledge of God, according to 
the measure of written revelation, detestation of sin committed, or 
^sorrow for sins, the fear of God, faith in Christ, the new obedience, 
the love of God and of our neighbor." 

CHMN. (Loc. c. Th., 190): "The human will cannot, by its 
own powers, without the Holy Spirit, either begin interior and 
spiritual movements, or produce interior obedience of the heart, ^ V V, 
or persevere unto the end in the course commenced and perfect it. >> 
They are called spiritual acts because (Rom. 7: 14) the Law is 
spiritual, that is, it is not satisfied by any external civil actions 
which the unregenerate can perform; but it demands such move- 
^ \ ^ ments and actions (1) as cannot be performed except by the 

5 agency of the Holy Spirit; (2) as unrenewed nature not only 
* ^vjiot perform, but even hinders the Holy Spirit in performing. 

The FORM. CONG, thus defines (Sol. Dec., II, 20): " Spiritual X 
or divine things are those which have respect to the salvat 
the soul." Concerning these says QUEN. (II, 178): "We 

all, I; 

(Ml- * 


, that the powers of the unrenewed man, both in intellect and will. 
> whether for the beginning, or continuing, or completing these en 

tirely spiritual acts which have just now been mentioned, are not 
only bound, impeded, or even weakened or broken, but altogether 
destroyed, lost, extinct and a nullity. For, in knowing and seekin 

are bestowed and put on. 

The proof of this position, as to the intellect, QUEN. (II, 178) 
derives from E^h. 5: 8; 1 Cor. 2: 14; 2 Cor. 3: 5; Rom. 1: 21, 22. 
as to the will, from Gen. 6: 5; Rom. 8: 7; Ezek. 11: 19; 36: 26; 
Rojm. 2: 5; : 17, 2p; Jon 8: 34~ E^li. 2: l,~2j Col. 2: 13; Ps. 
14: 2, ,3,; MaJ,t. 7: 18. This want of freedom extends so far 
QUEN. (II, 178) proceeds: "To this category also we refer the 


I I 

^L; A -*s. 

r /z~ 


going to church for the sake of receiving information from the 
preached Word, the reading and hearing of the Word of God with 
the desire of profit, the being controlled by the desire of informa 
tion from the Word, all which are the operations of antecedent and 
receptive grace. Here belongs also the external and historical 
knowledge of the biblical propositions which transmit the mysteries 
of faith, 1 Cor. 2: 14; Ep_h. 4: 18; 5: 8." 

In the Symbolical Books the principal passages are in the FORM. 


[8] FORM. Coxc. (Sol. Dec. II, 7): "We believe that man is 
entirely corrupt and dead to that which is good, so that there has 
*not remained, neither can remain, in the nature of man since the 
Tall, and before regeneration, even a scintillation of spiritual power, 
by which he can, of himself, prepare himself for the grace of God, 
or apprehend offered grace, or be capable, in and of himself, of re 
ceiving that grace, or of applying or accommodating hiimelf to grace, or 
by hi* oivn powers contributing anything, either in whole or in half, or 
in the smallest part, to his own conversion, or of acting, operating, or 

co-operating, as of himself, or of his own accord,. " . 

The FORM. CONC. (II, 77) therefore rejects the dogma of the 
Synergists, {t who pretend that in spiritual things man is not abso 
lutely dead to that which is good, but only deeply wounded and 
half dead. And although the free will is too weak to begin and, 
>y its own powers, convert itself to God and obey with the whole 
heart the Law of God, yet, if the Holy Spirit make a beginning, 
call us by the Gospel and offer to us His grace, the forgiveness of 
sins, and eternal life, then that free will could by its own peculiar 
powers, meet God, in some way contribute (something, at least, 
although little and languidly) to its own conversion, aid it, co- 
perate, prepare itself for grace, and apply it, apprehend it, 
embrace it, believe the Gospel, and . co-operate together with the 
Holy Spirit in continuing and preserving its own operations." 
The following positions, taken by Melanchthon, in the Examen 

Ordinandorum : "Three causes concur in conversion, the Word of 
God, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father and the Son send that He 
may enkindle our hearts, and our own will assenting to and not 
resisting the Word of God;" as also in Article XVIII of the 
altered Augsb. Conf. : "A state of spiritual justification is effected 
when we are assisted by the Holy Spirit, and Human nature 
cannot produce the interior emotions, true fear, etc., unless the 
Holy Spirit govern and assist our hearts," are therefore regarded. 

as synergistic. CHMN. (Loc. c. Th., I, 201) clearly comments 
upon the first of these propositions : The human will does not 

<7 S 

concur iry such a manner as to aid spiritual acts by its own powers. 
. . . But the human will is numbered among the causes of a 
good act, because it can resist the Holy Spirit (Acts 7: 51) and 
destroy the work of God (Rom. 14: 20). The children of God 
are led by the Holy Spirit, not that they should believe or do good 
ignorantly and unwillingly, . . . but grace makes them willing 
from being unwilling, because it works to will, Rom. 7: 22." 

[9] QUEN. (II, 176): " In the state of corruption, liberty in the 
will of man is not only that of contradiction or action, but that 
also of contrariety or specification; not, indeed, that which ? s em 
ployed between spiritual good and en l, for this was lost by the Fall, 
but that which is employed between this and that spiritual evil in partic 
ular" "By liberty of contradiction, we are to understand that lib 
erty which is employed about one and the same object, within 
opposing limits, us to will and not to will, to do and not to do; by 
liberty of contrariety, that liberty which is employed either about 
diverse objects or about diverse acts of the same object." HOLL 

GRH. (V, 99): "There exists in man, therefore, freedom of will, 
along with the servitude of sin, for he both sins and is unable to 
refrain from sinning, while he nevertheless sins freely and delights 
to sin; although he is not moved except to evil, yet he chooses it 
freely, i. e., willingly and spontaneously, not unwillingly or under 
coercion, and is moved to it with all his energy. Add to this, that 
in the very choice of evils he exercises a certain liberty. 

HUTT. (Loc. c., 272): "Even in evil and vicious actions, free 
dom of the will is very readily conceded, inasmuch as the will, riot 
yet regenerate, most freely, i. e., not by coercion, but spontan 
eously, wills, chooses, approves, and does that which is evil. 
Whence it happens that that which is voluntary enters into the 
definition of sin, so that that cannot properly be called sin which 
is not voluntary. . . . But it is here asked why this propensity to 
evil is said to be free, aye, freedom itself, since it is rather a sad 
and horrid service. But it is very properly replied that both 
assertions are true in a different respect; for this propensity of our 
will is properly described as both enslaved and free. Enslaved it 
is with respect to the lost image of God; for, since by the Fall the 
faculty of choosing the good and avoiding the evil was taken away, 
there was afterwards left a will which is so held captive under the 
tyranny of sin that it is not moved, except to the choosing of evil 
and avoiding the good. G^. 8: 21; Rom. 8: 7. But, though the 
will be such a slave, yet it nevertheless is very properly called free, 
if we only have regard to the proper seat of sin, which is in the 


will of man. But if any one wish to assign to it also another 
cause, as when the Church sets the bounds of liberty concerning 
evil actions, that it may assign limits to human curiosity, so that 
the latter may not seek the cause of sin without itself, but rather 
examine and discover it in itself; to this assuredly we will not 

[10] CHMN. (Loc. c. Th., I, 183): "Augustine calls the works 
of the present life external things. Because in spiritual acts 
there is no liberty, the will not being free, therefore, in order that 
freedom may not be entirely taken away from the will even in ex 
ternal things, this doctrine is taught concerning the freedom of the 
Avill in external discipline. But discipline is diligence in governing 
external actions and restraining external members in accordance 
with the precepts of the Decalogue; although the interior move 
ments either may not be present or may not consent. . . . But in 
external things, Paul (R_om. 1: 20) ascribes even to the unregener 
ate mind thoughts, knowledge, truth, etc. It is very evident that 
the mind was not despoiled of all intellect by the Fall, but that 
there is remaining, even in unregenerate men, some power of mind 
in perceiving and judging~thoBe things which have been subjected to 
reason and the senses, as in inventing and learning the various arts, 
in domestic life, politics, ethics, in counsel, prudence, etc. For 
this faculty makes the difference between rational man and irra 
tional animals." 

MEL. (Loci. Th., 68): "Since there remains, in the nature of 
man, a certain judgment and choice of things which are objects of 
reason or sense, there remains also a choice of external civil works; 
wherefore the human will is able, by its own powers, without reno 
vation, to perform in some way the external duties of the Law. 
This is the freedom of the will which philosophers properly 

attribute to man. For even Paul, discriminating between carnal 
and spiritual righteousness, admits that the unregenerate have a 
certain power of choice, and perform certain external deeds of the 
Law, such as to abstain from murder, theft, robbery; and this he 
calls carnal righteousness." HUTT. (272): " Reason and will in 
man are so inseparably united that neither can exist without the 
other, but they mutually presuppose each other; BO that any con 
cession of the existence of reason since the Fall necessarily carries 
with it the concession of the faculty of the will, unless any one 
should wish to assert that the reason could choose or refuse any 
thing without the will, which would be supremely absurd." 
CONF. AUG. XVIII: "Concerning free will, they teach that the 
human will has some liberty to attain civil righteousness and to 


choose \\\ regard to things subject to reason. But it has no power ** ~ 
without tho Holy Spirit, to attain righteousness before (?od or 
spiritual righteousness." 

The expression l Ciril RtjrAteottMMM is more fully explained in 
the Ar. of the CONK. , XY1I1, 70: "We do not strip the human 
will of liberty. The human will has liberty of ehoiee in works and 
things whieh reason by itself eomprehends. It ean in some meas 
ure attain to eivil rigl \teousness, or the righteousness of works, it 
ean speak about (u>d, it ean offer to (unl a eertain external wor 
ship. obey magistrates and parents; in choosing external note it ean 
withhold its hand from murder, adultery, and theft. Since there 
remains in the nature of man reason and judgment concerning 
things subject to sense, there remains also the ehoiee concerning 
such things and the power of attaining eivil righteousness. For it 
is this that the Scripture calls the righteousness of the ilesh, whieh 
the carnal nature, /. <\ , reason, by itself effects without the Holy 
Spirit. Although the power of concupiscence is so great that men 
more frequently obey their evil affections than their sound judg 
ment. And the devil, who worketh in the children of disobe 
dience, as Paul says (Knji. 2: li), does not eease to incite this 
imbecile nature to various sins. These are the reasons why civil 
righteousness also is so rare among men." 

For proof, CHMX. (U>c. c. Th., I, 185): u (l) Because Paul 
allirms that there is a certain carnal righteousness, Rojp. 2: 1-1; 
"If: 3; Uiijl. o: (J. Q2)_Heeause Paul says thatThe Law is the object 
of free will, even among the unjust, 1 Tim. 1 : \\ i. <., the Law was 
given to the unregenerate to restrain the will, the affections of tlu\ 
heart and locomotion in externals." 

The later divines point out as "the objects about which the will 
of man in the state of corruption is occupied, two hemispheres, one 
of which is called the lower and the other the higher." To tlu> 

latter belong the things purely spiritual or sacred (w<v<r 
of whieh we have been speaking. To the former are referred 
Hoi. i.. (577): " All things and actions, physical, ethical, political, 
domestic, artificial, pedagogic, and divine, o far as they can h 
Jcni>icn hi/ (he liyht of irntxvi and can />< produced by (he poiccm oj nature 
<inl,-<l hi/ th<- (H-ncral concnnr<;- ,<i (;,>,!." (inn. ( V. lOP: " For wo 
confess that some liberty remained as far as acts are concerned 
which are just, in the sense of moral, political, and domestic just> 
ice, which, according to Luther, belong to the lower hemisphere. 
For example, an unregenerate man can control his external loco 
motion as he will, he can govern the members of his body by the 
dictate of right reason; he can, in some degree, attain civil justice, 


and avoid the more heinous external sins that are in conflict with 
external discipline. Much more can he also hear with the outward 
ear, and meditate upon the words of God. Yet this cannot be 
admitted without some limitation. HOLL. (583): "The will of 
regenerate and unregenerate men since the Fall has the power, in 
regard to different things which are subject to reason, of choosing 
or embracing one rather than another, alttwvgh tttat power is languid 
and infirm." This weakness arises from impediments both exter 
nal and internal. Among internal impediment* are reckoned the 
following, viz., r blindness of the intellect, which causes error in 
deliberations, disinclination of the will to pursue the good, and a 
proclivity to embrace the evil, vehemence of the affections, often 
so great that like a torrent it carries away with it the will and dis 
turbs the judgment. The external impediments are the cunning of 
the devil, the blandishments and terrors of the world, the control 
of God, subverting plans and diminishing or cutting off the ability 
to act." HUTT. (269) divides all the actions of men into: "evil, 
viz., th.-<- forliid-l -ii by the Monti L;i\v: rin-<!i;it<- or ii 

ood." Concerning the mediate he says: "These again are three 
fold, according as they pertain to the condition of our nature, such 
as to stand, sit, sleep, eat, drink, and such like, most of which are 
common to man and brutes, having mainly respect to the vegeta 
tive, positive, appetitive, and locomotive powers of the soul; or, as 
they pertain to our civil and domestic conduct, such as to buy, 
sell, go to law, go to war, to follow a trade, and whatever pertains 
to civil or domestic lifej-or, finally, such as pertain to the external 
government and discipline of the Church, such as to teach and 
hear the Word of God, to observe certain ceremonies, to give and 
receive the sacraments, and similar external works, affecting the 
external senses. We call the actions of this second class mediate 
or indifferent, because by their nature, or in themselves, they are 
neither good nor bad; but whatever of good or evil belongs to them, 
this they derive from other accidental causes." Concerning good 
actions he says: "They are twofold, either morally good, such as 
to live honestly, to give every one his due, not to injure another; 
or spiritually good, such as to have proper regard for the worship 
of God, for true religion, and the eternal salvation of souls." It 
is only the latter that he denies to the unregenerate. Of the others 
he says (273): " It is clear that some liberty of the will must be 
conceded to the unregenerate, not only as to the despotic (fca-noTiKbv) 
kind of actions, when, namely, the movement of the members is 
controlled by the command of the will, whether the affections in 
wardly consent or not, but also as to the freely chosen 


when the will, in accordance with a good affection, prefers honest 

[11] This description of free will applies to man in the state of 
corruption ._ The Dogmaticians distinguish, however, a threefold 
condition, "the state Jbefore the Fall, the state of corruption ,~Th"e 
state of reparation, " and in each j)f these conditions _ free will is a 
, different thing. QUEN. (II, 176): Jnjhe state before the Fall man 
was free (T) from physical necessity; (2) from compulsory neces 
sity; (3) from the servitude of sin; (4) from misery; (5) from 
the necessity of immutability; not, however, (6) from the neces 
sity" oFobligation " ("which is the determinative direction of the 
will for the attainment of good and the avoidance of evil, accord 
ing to the rule of a higher law," HOLL. (571).)-" QUEN. (II, 
183): * In the state of reparation. The restoration of the integrity 
lost by the Fall is either that commenced in conversion or that 
completed in glorification; the former occurs in this life, the latter 
in the life to come. In the state of incipient restoration there exists 
in man, when converted, or after his conversion, a freedom in re 
lation to an object supernatural or purely spiritual, not only from 
physical necessity, but also from the necessity of immutability, 
because his will is no longer determined to evil, as before his con 
version, but it can freely choose good, by the grace of the Holy 
Spirit assisting and co-operating; it can also choose spiritual evil 
in consequence of the remains of a carnal disposition still adhering 
to him. In the state of consummated restoration, or in eternal life, 
there will succeed a full and perfect freedom of the human will. 
not only from compulsion and from the servitude of sin, but also 
from misery, and from the root and sense of sin; and also a liberty 
from internal necessity or immutability, as well that of contrariety 
(or, as to what relates to the kind of sin) as that of contradiction 
(or, as to whether the power to sin shall be exercised or not)." 

FORM. CONC. (Sol. Dec. II, 67): " There is a great difference 
between the baptized and the unbaptized. For since, according to 
the teaching of_Paul (Gal. 3: 27), all who axe baptized put on 
Christ, and are truly born again, these now have free will, ? . e. , 
have again been made free, as Christ testifies (John 8: 36). 
Whence, aleo, they not only hear the Word of God, but also, 
though not without much infirmly, *" f P"*"**- *** {t imA V>*>1 W- 
ingly embrace it." 

<vtt 4*^-6 . 

. 3 : /< % 





29. Sources of Salvation. 

IF man is to be redeemed from the lost condition in which 
he lies since the Fall, this can be accomplished only through 
divine grace. This exhibits itself in three acts, one of which 
proceeds from the Father jinpther from the Son, and the third 
from the Holy Ghost. The Father is moved with compassion 
towards fallen man. and this impels llii:: to the gracious deter 
mination to effect redemption by the sending of the Son. The 
Son accomplishes this redemption, and the Holy Spirit offers 
to man the means whereby he can appropriate it to himself. 
The third part of our work therefore treats : 

I. Of the benevolence of God the Father towards fallen man, 
who is to be delivered and blessed ; 

II. Of the fraternal redemption by Christ ; 
III. Of the grace of the Holy Spirit in the application ofjre^ 

*HOLL. (585): "The sources of salvation are the acts of divine grace, upon 
which the eternal salvation of men depends. The Saviour Himself, Jojin 3: 16, 
points to these three sources of salvation. God, by loving the world, and giving 
His Son as Mediator, manifests His benevolence. The Son was given to rescue 
from destruction the world, i. e., the entire human race inhabiting this earth, and 
thus to become its Redeemer. The means of enjoying the redemption of Christ 
is trne faith, fixed in Christ s merit, which the Holy Spirit (inasmuch as He is 
called the spirit of faith, 2 Cor. 4: 13) enkindles by His efficacious working 
through the Word and Sacraments." 

Qi EN. (Ill, 1): All three persons of the Godhead have been occupied in the 
procuring of human salvation. The Father loves those who have fallen, the Son 
redeems those who have been loved, and the Holy Ghost calls and teaches those 
who have been redeemed." 



30. Benevolence of God. 

r j^HE gracious will of God, to deliver fallen men from their 
-*- ruined condition, is the first thing we have to consider, 
for it is this that originates the sending of the Son, who accom 
plishes the redemption, and the sending of the Holy Spirit, 
who applies it to individual persons. 

This, His gracious will, God at once announced in His 
promise (recorded in Gen. 3 : 15). But God did not then, for 
the first time, form this purpose of redeeming man ; for, as He 
foresaw from eternity that ho would fall, He determined at the 
same time both to create and to redeem him. [2] This pur 
pose of God, however, will, in time, be accomplished only in 
the case of those who fulfil the condition upon which redemp 
tion is to be applied. Therefore we distinguish this gracious 
will of God into general and special benevolence. 

I. The gracious will of God is called the universal or general 
will (benevolence) when it is considered in itself, as it refers to 
all men alike miserable, and it is exhibited in preparing the 
means of redemption for all, and effectually offering the same 
to them, without for the present considering the manner in 
which men treat the grace thus offered to them. [3] HOLL. 
(586): " The universal benevolence of God is that act of divine 
grace bv^ which God, having witnessed the common misery of 
fallen men, is moved not only earnestly to desire the salvation 
of them all, but also to give Christ as Mediator for its accom 
plishment, and to appoint appropriate and efficacious means 
with the intention that all men should use them, attain through 
them true faith in Christ, and possess and enjoy eternal salva 
tion, procured through Plim, to the praise of the divine good- 
ness." This will is also called antecedent, inasmuch as, in the 
nature of the case, it antedates all question as to the manner 
in which man may treat the offered grace. [4] It refei to all 
men alike (universally to all, without a single exception. John 



I*-** "- fc*^ 



3:16; 1 Tim. 2:4; Rom. 11 : 32 ; Acts 17 : 30, 31 ; Tit. 2 : 
11 ; 2 Pet. 3 : 9 ; Ezek. 33 : 11), [5] depends alone upon God s 
compassion for the wretched condition of man, and has in no 
sense been called forth by any merit or worthiness of man. [6] \ 
This will of God, moreover, earnestly and sincerely proposes / 
that all men obtain salvation through Christ, [7] and God 
offers unto all the necessary means, and is ready to render s 
these available for them. [8] Meanwhile this will of God is x 
still not as absolute and unconditional as is the compassion of v 
God towards man, from which the plan of salvation has pro-,, 
ceeded ; that is, this will of God aims at saving men through \ 
the merits of Christ and the appropriation of the means of re-^ 
^demption as furnished to them. [9] The statements concern- i\ 
ing the universal will of God may accordingly be summed up^ 
under the following characteristics : 

It is (1) gratuitous and free (Gal. 3 : 22 ; Rom. 11 : 32 ; 8 :^J 
[32); (2) impartial (Rom. 3: 22); (3} ^sincere and earnest (Ezek. V) 
jl : 2.3, 32 ; 3_3 : 11); (4) efficacious (Ro.m. 2 : 4); (5) not absolute,\ 
ordinate and conditioned (John 3 : 16 ; 1 Tim. 2:6; Rom. j 
5:8; 1 Jojbn 1 : 4, 9, 10. [10] The universal will of God is^ 
distinguished from \j 

II. TJie Special Will of God. Thus this same [11] will of , 
God in reference to the salvation of men is designated, when 
}we view it in connection with the divinely foreseen conduct of 
; v ^men towards the offered grace, as the condition upon which v 
f, ^they are to be saved. HOLL. (586) : " This special benevolence \ 
of God is that which induces Him to bestow eternal salvation " 
Lupon sinners who embrace the means of salvation offered to * \ 
^thenh" Although the will of God is general, inasmuch as 
x VGod s disposition is equally gracious toward all men, and in-* 
rasmuch as for their salvation He has prepared a plan of re- 
^demption in the sending of His Son, available equally for all; J> 
<$yet it already follows from the above distinction, according to 
which the general will of God is not absolute, but ordinate and 
conditioned, that the accomplishment of this gracious will is <^ < 
conditioned by the conduct of man towards the offered grace. ^C! 
^ . If the aim of the will of God, considered in itself, without re-^ 
gard to this conduct of men, be that all are to be saved by the"wj 
\^ plan of redemption through Christ, yet its aim, more specific- M 

^^S tx^****** X~3^ 




ally described, is that only those shall be saved who .accept of th$& 
salvation offered and persevere therein, and it refers only to these. 
This will of God, thus more specifically described (the special ^ 
will of God), is also called consequent, because the divine fore- J 
knowledge of the proper conduct on the part of man precedes^ 
it ; and it is also designated as particular, because it refers not j 
to all men, but only to those of whom God foreknows that they 
will properly treat the offered grace. [12] (Enh. 1:1; James 
> 2 : 5 ; %v. 2 : 10 ; 1 Tjjn. 1:16; John 17 : 20.) 

^5 From this special benevolence of God, which is based upon the^ 
^ universal benevolence of God, and proceeds from it, there comes f ) 

xjVorth the purpose of God, [13] which is called predestination . t 
s [14] or election ,; [15] the purpose, namely, to save through the^N 
merits of Christ the definite number of those whose right treat- 3,1 
ment of the offered grace God had foreseen. HOLL. (604) : " 

- A V f J <V 

x\ " Predestination is the eternal decree of God to bestow eternals J* 
^ salvation upon all of whom God foresaw that they would fin-^^ 
H ally believe in Christ." [16] 

v/ In virtue of the universal benevolence, salvation is provided* * 

..for and offered to all, but the purpose of redemption is accom-^ | 

plished not with all, but only in the case of a definite number ( 

of men ; the reason of this, however, lies in the special benevo- 1 

lence, in virtue of which only those really are to be saved whd| 

truly accept by faith the offered salvation, and persevere in | 

this faith. [17] But God, by His foreknowledge, eternally fore- - 

sees who these will be, and this foreknowledge is the grourTd Jj 

^upon which the purpose of God, embracing only a definite^ 

^number of men, is eternal. [18] 

The decree of God is still further defined as (1), not absolute ^> 
but ordinate (determined by a certain order of means) and rela- ^ 
tive (1 Cor. 1 : 21), [19] i. e., there is no arbitrariness on the $ 
; part of God, if He include a number of persons among the elect, ( 
^and exclude others, for His purpose depends upon the observ- ^ 
ance of the order to which salvation is bound (" The apostle ^ 
does not say that God absolutely wills to save all, in whatso- <^ 
ever manner they may conduct themselves, but that God wills a 
that all may be saved, that is, by certain means." QUEN.), and 
He has respect, therefore, in forming His purpose, to man 
conduct towards this appointed order of salvation. But this 


decree is also (2), not conditional, but categorical and simple ? i. e., ni^^ 
God does not allow it to be still doubtful, in time, whether HeN| \j K 
will bestow salvation upon this or that man, as though His^ j 
purpose were only to save this or that man, if or after he mayx^ 
^ have laid hold upon the merit of Christ ; but, by virtue of His S 
foreknowledge, He recognizes in advance those who will lay . 
hold upon the merit of Christ, and only to these does His pur-^ V ^ 
. pose refer, and thus it is simple and categorical. [20] Hence ^ 
J it follows, therefore, also (3), that the election (taken in its^ 

strictest sense), because it rests upon an eternal decree of God, ^ $ 
w/* is immutable and irrevocable (so that an elect person cannot K v v^ 
become a reprobate, Matt. 25 : 34 ; James 2:5; Matt. 24 : 24 ; | 
1 Pet. 1 : 2, 4 ; John {ft : 28 ; Dan. 12: 1 ; Rom. 8 : 2j9, 30) ; | 
\y for God would not have correctly foreseen if His purpose woulcU . N 
?^ have to suffer change (election is immutable, because based \ I 

E* V upon an ordinate decree and because of the infallibility of the\ 
|. j y divine foreknowledge). Though the elect may for a while fall v $ 
l\, s^into sin and from grace, this cannot continue forever, and they 5 ^ 
v i y cann t foil of eternal salvation. [21] ^J 

[ $ \. The attributes or adjuncts of election and of the elect may ^~ 


1 : 9 ; 2 Thess. 2:13; Matt, 25 : 34); (b) Particularity 
t. 20 : 16); (c) Immutability (2 Tim. 2 : 19 ; Matt. 24 : 24 ;V 
Pet. 1 : 4 ; Rom. 8 : 29, 3_0). ^ 

" II. The attributes of the elect : (a) Paucity (Matt. 20: 16; 22.\j> 
L4); (b) Possibility of totally losing, for a while, indwelling^, 
^ > V jprace (Ps. 51: 12 ; 1 Cor. 10: 12) ; (c) The certainty of election,! 
^?Vy[22] (Luke 10: 20; Rom. 8: 38 ; 2 Tim. 4: 8; Phil. 2: 12); t 
^"0 Finafperseverance in the faith (Matt. 10: 22; Rev. 2: 10)."^ 
In contrast with predestination stands reprobation. [23] As^ 
foreknows those who will preseveringly believe in Christ;^ 
and as, in view of this, He forms His purpose to save these, so 
also, in the same way, His purpose of condemnation embraces 
the definite number of those who are lost ; and therefore repro- \^ 
bation is " that act of the consequent divine will by which ^ 
God (before the foundation of the world) through His vindica- ^ 
tive justice, and for its perpetual glory, adjudged to eternal 
condemnation all contumacious sinners, of whom He foresaw 

hus compendiously stated (QuEN., Ill, 20) : 
" I. The attributes of election : (a) Eternity (Eph. 1:4; 2 

*^fc^ * -O 







L~ svsCex^&C -T^o-^ y^t, 

that they would finally reject the proffered grace of the call 
and of justification, and would depart this life without faith in 
Christ" (HoLL. Q43.) 

All the specifications referring to this topic correspond to 
those given concerning Predestination. The " internal exciting 
cause is the vindicative or punitive justice of God (Rom. 2: 8); 
the external exciting cause is the rejection of the merit of Christ, 
i. e., the foreseen amaria or final incredulity (Mark 16: 16; Jqh,n 
3: 30)." [24] The form of reprobation, however, consists in 
" exclusion from the inheritance of eternal salvation, and in 
adjudication to eternal punishment according to the purpose 
and foreknowledge of Gp_d (Matt. 25: 41)." 

Thus the attributes of reprobation and of the reprobate cor 
respond to those of election and the elect. The attributes of 
reprobation are : (a) Eternity (Matt. 25: 41 ; Jude 5: 4$ (6) Im 
mutability (Nurnb. 23: 19 ; 1 Sam. 15: 29 ; Mai. 3: 6)." The 
attributes of the reprobate are : "(a) Plurality (Matt. 7: 13); (6) 
Possibility of being for awhile in the state of the truly regene- 
rate ; (c) Perseverance in final unbelief!" 

OBSERVATION I. The foregoing representation, as here de 
veloped, belongs to a later period. GRH. is the first who, with 
special reference to earlier scholastic distinctions, presented 
the doctrine in this form ; while the earlier theologians, in 
their statement of this doctrine, adhered to the definition 
j w r hich in Note 14 we designate as the second. That is as fol- 
Uows: " God determined from eternity to save those who 
would believe upon Christ." Thus the FORM. CONC. When, 
however, the later theologians undertook systematically to 
present what can be said concerning predestination, the state- 
^ment of the FORM. CONC. did not seem to them sufficient, be- 
i cause the purpose of God to save all who would believe on 
Christ could not be so indefinite in His ow r n mind as was ex 
pressed by the words, "all those who would believe." This 
purpose of God, they supposed, must rather be so positive that 
the definite number of those who should be saved must be 
known to Him, as otherwise it might be maintained that God 
would allow it to remain undecided until in the course of time 
which persons are to be saved ; which would be inconsistent 
with the assumed eternity of the purpose. From this effort io 

/<. /t-<&^<;^ 


express themselves accurately originated the definition of pre 
destination in the strictest sense, as also the distinction between 
irp6fcoic and n-poopiafj.df. But to avoid the error of assuming that, 
if the number of the elect was fixed from eternity, their Decep 
tion among that number in time was for that reason no longer 
conditioned by the conduct of men with reference to the offered 
grace, but depended upon an absolute and hidden decree of 
God, the further specification was added, that God, by virtue 
of His foreknowledge, antedating the purpose itself, from eter 
nity foresaw who those would be who would accept the offered 
grace. (A specification which, indeed, is not unknown to the 
FORM. CONC., cf. Sol. Dec. XI, 54, but which was not then in 
troduced into the definition of predestination.) And then 
there was added by the later theologians the distinction be 
tween the general and special will of God, which was meant to 
show that the will of God to save was, indeed, in itself consid 
ered, and without reference to the conduct of men, general and 
applicable to all ; but that, as the actual conferring of salva 
tion was dependent upon the conduct of men with reference 
to it, as soon as reference was had to this, it then became spe 
cial, and referred then only to those who conducted themselves 
properly with reference to the offered salvation. By all these 
further specifications, however, the doctrine of predestination 
was only more accurately stated, and not jn any wise altered. 
OBSERVATION II. The question, whether the foreknowledge 
of God does not necessarily determine the fate of men, so that 
human freedom is thereby abolished, is not discussed by any 
of the theologians in this connection. CHMN. (Loc. c., I, 162) 
endeavors, in the discussion of the cause of sin, to meet the 
above objection by remarking that the foreknowledge is no act 
of the will, and that therefore the future ia not determined by 
it. " The fact, whether past or future, does not depend upon 
knowledge, but knowledge upon the fact, . . . and it was 
rightly said by Qrigen, * yet we judge by common consent con- 
cerning foreknowledge, not that anything will happen because 
God knows that it will, but that, because it will happen, God 
already knows it, And so also the later Dogmaticians. 
QUEN. (I, 539): " That same divine foreknowledge or foresight 
does not depend upon any divine decree, nor does it of itself 

, /y/X * U <^&< ^><^t/f 

/7x> /? //! -/ 

*JU+M < ^**r^S, j-^ 


impose any necessity upon things foreseen, nor remove thuir 
contingency, although in itself it is certain and infallible." 
(Compare the specific statements in 21, Note 4.) The FORM. 1 
CONC. appears to regard this question as belonging to the do-^f 
main of the inexplicable and mysterious, the prying into which 
constitutes no part of human duty. Sol. Dec. XI, 54, 55. 





[1] HUTT. (1. c., 768, sq. ) introduces the doctrine with th 
following words : The apostle in his golden epistle to th 
Romans, having treated the subject of Divine Predestination very 
extensively and accurately, at length, as though having passed 
into a stupor, as he surveys somewhat more deeply the exhaust- 
less abyss of the divine mysteries about this article, breaks forth 
in the almost unaccustomed exclamation: the depth of the w 
riches, both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! how unsearch- ix 
able are His judgments, and His ways past finding out. Rom.;^ v 
11 : 33. This exclamation has caused most of the orthodox Fathers ! 
to treat the article of Predestination too cautiously and briefly; 
and even to-day there are some who regard its consideration im- | 
prudent and useless, nay, rather troublesome and painful; who V 
affirm that it cannot be presented, in an assembly of hearers, with- $ 
out great danger; and who apply to this the trite proverb, Noli 
tangere. While we, indeed, think that the modesty and care 
the ancient Fathers deserve praise, we, at the same time, neither 
can nor ought, in any way, to approve the excessively severe judg 
ment of some later teachers. For if the consideration of thi 
article ought to be regarded imprudent, certainly Christ and 
apostles can scarcely be defended from the suspicion of temerity, \ 
since they often, and indeed accurately and publicly, presented^ 
and explained to their hearers the subject of Predestination. If 
you except the one article of Justification, there is scarcely any | 
other theological topic which the Holy Spirit has so fully unfolded , 
in the Scriptures of the New Testament, Matt. 28: 22*3lf Mark I 
13: 20, 2_2, 27; Luke 18: 7; J.ob 13: 18; 15: 16; Rom. 8: 30; andjj 
almost the entire ninth, tenth and eleventh chapters; 1 Qor. 1: 27, v 
2 ; E^h. 1: 4, ; Col. 3: 42f*2 T^ess. 2: 13; 2 Tim. 1:9; : 10;\ 
Tit 1: 1; 1 Pet. 1: 2; Rev. 17: 14. As, therefore, those things^ 
which God has wished to be secret are not to be investigated, so j 
those things which He has revealed are not to be denied or con- k - 
cealed; in order that we may not be found unlawfully curious in ^ 
regard to the former, or culpably ungrateful in regard to the latter. /Y 
. . . These matters being considered in such a manner that we v 
can be occupied, profitably and with a good conscience, in the 

)^ ^C&t/ J&SW- 

//& ^e^^L^f 3* J 
/? -S ^6 

** "~* . 

,u~~ ./.?- 

r. 1 

T J 





explanation of the mystery of eternal predestination, we are thor-^ 
oughly convinced, nevertheless, that, just as we confine ourselves, v 
within the bounds and limits of the Divine Word, we will err^ 
neither in excess nor defect. But here we must especially observe- ] 
the caution, to attend well to the source whence judgment concern 
ing this article can and should be sought and framed. Moreover, V 
the Book of Christian Concord teaches correctly, that outside of-- 
and bevond the Word of God no place for weighing this mystery 
should be left for human reason. . . . Furthermore, neither is 
Predestination to be sought immediately in God Himself, whom 
no one has ever seen. But it is the Word of God alone from 
which the entire treatment of this mystery is to be solely sought; 
as, in it, nothing~has been omitted that at all pertains to the mys- . 
tery of our salvation and election: nay, rather, according to the | * 
testimony of the apostle, the whole counsel of God has been re-V * 
vealed in it to us. A_cts 20: 27. . . . This Word is nothing else ^ 
than the Gospel of Christ. As, therefore, we have the will of God 
revealed in the Word of the Gospel, we declare that this itself must 
be considered the eternal and immutable decree; and the counsel 
and purpose of God is the ground both of our eternal election and 
salvation, because in God there are not contradictory wills." 

FORM. CONC. (Sol. Dec. XI, 9, sq.): " Still this eternal election \ 
or ordination of God to life eternal must be considered not merely ^ 
in that secret, heavenly, and inscrutable counsel of God, as though 
the election comprehended or required nothing more, and in think- , 
ing upon it nothing more required to be taken into account than , ^\^ 
the fact that God has foreseen what men and how many will attain 
salvation, and who and how many will perish eternally, or as V 
though the Lord would make a military review, and would say or >2 
determine, This one is to be saved, but that one is to be damned; V| 
this one shall persevere steadfast in faith to the end, but that one I ^ 
shall not persevere. For, from this opinion, many derive absurd, 
dangerous, and pernicious thoughts, which produce and strengthen, 
in the minds of men, either security and impenitence or distress 
and despair. . . . (13) Wherefore, as we wish to think or speak * 
correctly and with profit concerning the eternal election or pre 
destination and ordination of the sons of God to eternal life, let us 
accustom ourselves not to endeavor, by our reason, to investigatey 
the mere, secret foreknowledge of God, which no man has ex 
plored and learned to know. But let us meditate upon the divine 
election according to the manner in which the counsel, purpose, 
and ordination of God are revealed to us, through the Word, in 
Christ Jesus (who is the true Book of Life). Therefore, let us 



comprehend at the same time, in thought, the whole doctrine con 
cerning the purpose, counsel, will, and ordination of God (namely, 
all things which pertain to our redemption, call, justification, and 

[2] GRH. (IV, 146): "After Adam with all his descendants had 
been ensnared, by the Fall, in the toils of eternal death, and no 
other remedy could be found for this evil, by the wisdom either of 
men or angels; God, coming forth from the secret seat of His 
majesty, revealed the adorable mystery concerning the restoration 
of the human race, through His Son, Gen. 3: 15. From the fact, 
therefore, that God, in fulfillment of this first promise, sent in the 
iulness of time His own Son, born of a woman, Gffi. 4 : 4, we infer 
^that God from eternity had made a decree concerning scixjing lHs 
Son into the flesh, that, by His obedience and satisfaction, the 
wounds might be healed, which the infernal serpent had inflicted 
upon man, and the blessings lost by the Fall might be restored/" 

[3] QUEN. (Ill, 1): "The most kind and merciful, universal 
will of God the Father towards fallen men embraces within its 

bounds all men in general who have been placed in misery, and 
has, according to our method of conception, two acts; of which the 
_// />/ is the pity of God^by which He inwardly and sincerely 
lamented that the human race, and indeed the whole of it, had 
been deceived so basely by the fraud of the devil, and, through the 
Fall, had been cast into instant, and that, too, eternal ruin; and 
by which He willed to deliver it from evil, and, provided it could 
be done without any injury to His justice, to recover for the same 
its lost salvation. The second act ia that by which God, moved by 
this pity and love to man, made a decree concerning the liberation 
of the human race, through the sending of His Son, and the reve 
lation of the same through the Gospel, to the end that all migKt 
believe in Him and thus be saved. For upon the interpositlorTof 
His Son, offering and promising a most perfect satisfaction, God 
mercifully ordained from eternity in His Son to restore all, and 
give them eternal life. 

[4] GRH. (IV, 169): The antecedent will is so named, be- 
cause it precedes the consideration of the obedience and disobe 
dience of men, and consists simply in that aspect of the divine will 
in which we regard the beneficent will of God as disposing itself 
equally towards all." 

HOLL. (586): "The antecedent will is that by which God wills 
the salvation of all fallen and wretched men, and for attaining this 
has given Christ as a mediator, and has ordained those means by 
which the salvation acquired through Christ, and strength for be- 


lieving, are offered to all men with the sincere intention of ^^ 
ferring such salvation and faith. 


F5] HUTT. (Loc. c., 792): In this antecedent will of love and 
mercy in God, not even a single individual of the entire human 
race has been neglected or passed by, even the son of perdition not ^ 
being excepted, John 17: 12. The full force of this assertion is, ^^ 
that God desired trie" salvation of all mortals; that he destined His f& ^ 
Son as the Redeemer for the whole world equally; that He willed ; /y^c. 
to offer these blessings to all in common, even to those who indeed /* ^ 
do not actually hear this Word, who do not actually believe, who ^ iX*. 
are not actually saved; yea, even to those who God foreknew would z*^<r> 
not hear His Word, would never believe, and also never be saved. " ^ &?+ 

The passages which ordinarily are quoted against the universal- df^o^ 
ity of grace, are Rom. 9: 18, 19; 9_: 11-13, 22. In reference to r^f^, 
Rom. 9: 19, QUEX. (Ill, 12): "From this passage the Calvinists 
frame an argument like this : The will of which Paul speaks is /y/* 
absolute. But it is the will to save and to destroy, of which Paul 7s& 
speaks. Therefore, the will to save and to destroy is absolute. ^-t^&~ 
Reply: The minor premise is false. For, indeed, it is the same ^J^^T 
will in both cases; yet there is a difference between willing the -*sn&f 
same absolutely, and with a condition." In reference to Rom. ^~^*- 
9: 18, HOLL. (594): " (a) The apostle speaks not of the general, /^*^ 
or universal, but of the special mercy of God, by which He justifies ^-^t^ 
those believing in Christ (v. 30), and therefore he does not treat of 
the antecedent but of the consequent will of God. (6) The mercy <^*^* 
of God is indeed free, but it is not absolute. . . . (c) God hardens /^^ 
whom He wills by sending upon them hardness, not causatively 
but judicially." ... In reference *D Rom. 9: 11-13 (QuEX. Ill, 
12): "(a) The text does not speak of Esau and Jacob, in their eKs?^ 
persons, but of their descendants. . . . (6) It does not give this /^><. 
testimony with reference to eternal predestination to salvation, or 
reprobation to destruction. Therefore, the Calvinists are inconsid 
erate in assuming that the love for Jacob, and the hatred towards 
Esau, relate to love of the former for life, eternal and absolute, and 
the reprobation of the latter to death eternal and absolute; but the 
apostle treats, Rom. 9: 10, H, of the rejection of the Jews from T^T* 
the outward superiority which they enjoyed in the course of so ^ 
many ages, and the reception by the Gentiles of those prerogatives 
which the Jews claimed for themselves alone. If the discussion 
had been concerning election, from the opinion of the Calvinists ~* ^- 
this absurdity would follow, viz. , that all the descendants of Jacob 
have been saved, and, on the other hand, all the descendants of 
Esau have been condemned. Therefore the sense of the passage is : 

- **-*< 

. Cj 



. /" , 

i^t. A Zff; 

I Have not brought or granted as much blessing to the descendants <J 
of Esau as I have to the descendants of Jacob, and thus I have v 
preferred the latter to the former; I have loved them less (the word 
hatred is thus employed, Luke 14: 26; Matt. 10: 37)." In refer- ^ 
ence to R_om. 9: 22, " From these words it is clear that God has 3 
indeed prepared vessels of mercy for glory, but vessels of wrath are 
not said to have been prepared by God, but to have been tolerated f 
by God with much long suffering. Wherefore, men hardened not j 
by God, but by themselves, and by their own wickedness and ^ 
voluntary perversity, have become vessels of wrath prepared for\ J> 
destruction, because they despise the counsel of God against them- ^ 
selves, Luke 7: 30." 

[6] HOLL. (599): " The mercy of God has been called forth by, V 
no merits, G.aJ. 3: 22; Rom. 11: 32. Pity for the sinner does notV 
move God causally, but only affords an occasion, and presents an 3 
object for pity, towards which, while He is able, yet He is under 
no obligation, to exercise fifavfipuKia. For in man there is no im- ^ 
pelling cause whatever." 

[7] HOLL. (599): " The benevolence of God towards the fallen > 
human race has not been feigned or counterfeited, but is earnesty 
and sincere; because, in the caring for human salvation, the will ^ 
of the sign conspires most harmoniously with the will of the divine * 
purpose, the precept and promise with the divine intention. He 
acts the hypocrite who promises one thing with his mouth and an- 
other with his heart; to think this of God is a crime." HUTT. 
(Loc. c., 792): "The truth of this statement is evident from clear 3 
testimonies of Scripture, 1 Tim. 2: 4; 2 Pet. 3: 9; M^tt. 23: 37; 
18: 32. Finally, the same is manifest from the use of the oath 
in most solemn attestation, Ez. 33: 11." 

[8] HOLL. (599): "The benevolence of God is not an empty 
vow, a fruitless wish, an indifferent complacency, by which one 
does not long to effect or obtain the thing which pleases him and 
which in itself he loves, and, therefore, is not willing to employ 
the means .leading to that end; but it is an efficacious desire, by 
which God seriously intends, through sufficient and efficacious 
means, to effect and obtain the salvation of men, in which He is 
most ardently delighted, Rom. 2: 4. The antithesis of the Calviniste 
states that God indeed, by His will, manifested in Scripture, or 
that of the sign (signi), wishes all to be saved; but by His secret 
will, which they call that of His purpose (ben.eplaciti\ that He 
wishes to save the elect alone." (QuEX., Ill, 7.) Cf. 18, 
Note 13. 

[9] HOLL. (600): "Although the first compassion of God, by 

; Ez. 



which He pitied the human race that had fallen into sin, and in 
fact the appointment of a Mediator, and the administration of tho 
means of salvation, are absolute, yet the merciful will of God to 
confer remission of sins and eternal salvation is not absolute, but 
relative and limited by justice, because it has respect to the satis- 
f action of Christ, by which divine justice was satisfied." 

QUEN. (Ill, 5): " It is founded in Christ, and is limited to the 
ends and means by which He is moved." In regard to the will of 
God, in general (Hurr., Loc. c., 782): "The will of God, in this 
mystery, is not considered according to its own most simple 
essence; it is distinguished only according to our understanding, 
and access to it does not lie open to our mind; but by reason of 
His act, with respect to things created, God goes forth beyond His 
own essence. According to the former method of consideration the 
will in God is just as indivisible as it is impossible for the essence 
of God itself to be divided into parts. But, according to the latter 
method of consideration, namely, as the will of God goes forth be 
yond its essence to creatures, it is twofold. For, whatever God 
wills to take place in created things, He wills either simply or with 
a determined mode or condition. The former will is commonly 
called, in the schools, absolute, and is joined with the immutable 
necessity of the event; according to this He calls those things 
which are not, as though they were, Rojn. 4: 17. . . . The latter 
will is fulfilled in no other way than by the fulfilment of the pre 
determined mode or precise condition; when this is not fulfilled, it 
likewise cornea to paw that that does not occur which God has 
notwithstanding especially willed should occur. The former is to 
be altogether separated from this mystery, and to be relegated to 
the schools of the Stoics and Calvinists . . but the latter, 
namely, the modified or limited will of God T enters into the act of 
the present mystery." 

[10] HOLL. (600): "The benevolence of God is ordinate, be 
cause God from His most profound counsel established a fixed 
rdfrf or series of means, to which, in the conferring of blessedness 
upon sinners, He has regard. These means are the Word of God 
and the Sacraments, by which God seriously intends to call sinners 
to the kingdom of grace, and convert, regenerate, justify, and save 
them. By this ordinate will God wishes not only that all men be 
saved, but also that all men come to the knowledge of the truth. 
The will is called conditional, not as though God wills only the 
end, and does not will the means, or wills the end under a con 
dition which He Himself from His mere purpose is unwilling 
should be fulfilled in many; but as God, willing that men should 


be saved, does not will that they should be saved without regard 
to the fulfilment of any satisfaction or condition, but should be 
led to salvation under the condition of determined means. Hence 
the proposition concerning the universality of grace is more specifi 
cally expressed thus: f God wills, through ordinary means, to 
confer saving faith upon all men." (Ib. ) 

[11] GRH. (IV, 169): "Moreover this division (into ante 
cedent and consequent will) distinguishes not the will by itself, 
which in God is one and undivided, just as the essence also is one; 
but its twofold relation. In the antecedent will, regard is had to 
the means for salvation, in so far as, on the part of God. they 

- - -t- J af* 

have been appointed and are offered to alL In the consequent 
will, regard is had to the same means, but in so far as they are 
accepted or neglected by men." HUTT. (L c., 783): "This dis 
tinction was introduced into the Church because of those passages 
of Scripture which bear witness that the will of God is not always 
done or fulfilled, e. g., M&tt. 23: 37; 1 Tim. 2:4." 

[12] HOLL. (586) : "The consequent will is that by which God, 
from the fallen human race, elects those to eternal life who Ho 
foresees will use the ordinary means, and will persevere to the end 
of life in faith in Christ." More specific definitions. HOLL. 
(587): The will of God is said to be antecedent and consequent. 

(1) Not with regard to time, as though the antecedent will preceded 
the consequent in time; for, as God is free from any limitations of 
time, He does not have any will which anticipates another in time. 

(2) Neither with regard to the divine wtU itself , as though two actually 
distinct wills in God were affirmed; for the divine will is the 
essence itself of God, with a connoted object, conceived under the 
mode of an act of volition. (3) But the will of God is said to be 
antecedent and consequent, from the order of our reason, distinguish- 
ing the diverse acts of volition in God, according to a diverse con 
sideration of the objects, and regarding one act before the other, so 
that it is only indicated that the antecedent will precedes the con 
sequent in that which is the image of the divine reason : because, 
according to our mode of conception, God s willing eternal salva 
tion to men, and His providing the means of grace, are anterior to 
the will of the same to confer in act eternal salvation upon those 
who would to the end believe in Christ, or to assign eternal con 
demnation to the impenitent." 

QUEN. (Ill, 2): "The antecedent will relates to man, in so far 
as he is wretched, no regard being had to circumstances in the 
object; but the consequent will is occupied with certain circum- 
stances in reference to man, namely, as he is believing or unbe- 


lieving. [HoLL. (588): "Wherefore the antecedent and con 
sequent wills of God are not opposed to each other in a contrary or 
contradictory manner, but are subordinated to one another. The 
latter is materially contained in the former, and passes into it 
when the condition is assumed. This I prove thus: By His ante 
cedent will, God wills that all men be saved if they believe to the 
end. But those using aright the ordinary means of salvation, are 
those who finally believe. Therefore the antecedent will of God is 
not overthrown, abolished, or removed by the consequent, but 
rather passes into the same when the condition is fulfilled."] 
" The antecedent respects the giving, and the consequent, the receiving 
of salvation on the part of man. The former is universal; the 
latter, particular. The former precedes, the latter follows, a purified 
condition. In the former, salvation is regarded with reference to 
the means, as on the part of God, these have been established and 
offered equally to all men. In the latter, the same salvation is 
regarded with respect to the means, but in so far as these are either 
accepted or neglected by men. The will of God, pertaining to 
that which is antecedent (antcccdanea), defines what men ought to. 
do, viz., to hear the word of God, through its hearing to receive 
faith, to apply to themselves the merit of Christ, and by means of 
this faith to be saved. The consequent will considers what men in 
fact do or do not, whether they obey the antecedent will or not, 
i. e. , it considers who in fact use the means of salvation established 
by God and who do not, who hear the Word of God and believe in 
Christ and who do not. " HUTT. (1. c., 794): "In the antecedent 
will (irpoiryovfttvii) faith is oonaidered as a part of the order which 

God, so far as it pertains to Himself, desires should be observed. 
In the consequent will (fenytfay) the same is considered not only in 

the manner in which God desires His own order to be observed 
by men, but, in so far as that order either is in fact observed by 
believing, or is not observed by not believing. - Although, indeed, 
this occurs in time with regard to men; yet, by reason of His 
prescience, it was especially present to God, inasmuch as, by the 
nature of eternity, nothing is future to Him, but all things are 
from eternity especially present to Him in the most simple noiv 
(ju irv). By reason of this ultimate difference, the consequent 
will -always attains its end, either for salvation or condemnation; 
but the antecedent will, not in like manner." Concerning the 
necessity of this distinction, HOLL. (587): This distinction 
(between the general and special will) is necessary, on account of 
the wonderful combination of divine justice and mercy, which are 
to be reconciled with each other. . For there are expressions^!! 



the Holy Scriptures that show that the mercy of God is inclined 
towards all sinners, 1 Tim. 2: 6; 2 Pet. 3: 9. There are other 
expressions which indicate the justice of (iod, :m<l exclude tVmii 
the inheritance of salvation those who resist the divine order, John 
3: 18; Mark 16: 16. Finally, there are biblical passages in which 
both the mercy and justice of God are declared, Matt. 23: 37. 
Christ, by His antecedent will, as far as it pertained to Himself, 
willed that the children of Israel be gathered together; but, by 
His consequent will, because they were unwilling to be gathered, 
He willed that their house be left to them desolate, cf. Acts 13: 46. 
This distinction is implied in the parables of Christ, Matt. 22 : 1 ; 
Luke 14: 16." 

[13] QUEN. (Ill, 14): "From the admitted universal benevo- \ 
lence of God, in the establishment and presenting of means, \ 
whereby He has determined to convert, regenerate, justify, and * 
save men, through His own efficacy, there arises a special benevo-^ 

* } lence conspicuous in the predestination to eternal life." ... i 1 

[14] The Dogmaticians observe that the word predestination | S N 
has been employed in the Church in various senses: sometimes in a * * 
wider sense, according to which it denotes {he purpose of God, re- N ) 

If \)\ ferring equally to the saving of believers and the condemnation of d J 
unbelievers; sometimes in a narrower sense, according to which it <r^ 
refers alone to the former. In the latter sense they understand it ^ $ 
to be employed in Biblical usage. Rojn. 8: 30; Eph. 1: 5. HOLL. ^ 
(607): ( Some Fathers and teachers have employed the word pre- ) 
destination improperly (axfpwc), inappropriately, and in a wider\j J 
sense than is lawful, to denote the divine purpose both for saving 
^ believing men and condemning unbelievers. But in Biblical 
usage the term predestination is always taken in a good sense, to 
denote the divine decree concerning the salvation of fallen men." 
But, even then, there is still a threefold distinction to be observed 

fin the definition of predestination; and the more the Dogmaticians 
appropriate at one time the one, and again the other, so much the 
1 1 1 i * * 1 *T 1* 1 j.lLJ.1 J.1 1 A. 

> more is this distinction to be considered, in order that the thought -^ 
may not hence arise, that the Dogmaticians stood in opposition to 
each other in regard to the subject itself. Sometimes they under 
stood by predestination, in the most general manner, the purpose 
of God to establish a scheme of redemption whereby all might be 
saved. BR. (711): "The decree refers to the entire work of 
leading man to salvation." Thus the notion is defined by the 
Formula Concordise (Sol. Dec. XI, 14): "Therefore we embrace in 
mind, at the same time, the entire doctrine of the design, counsel, 
will, and ordination of God (viz. , all things which pertain to our 


redemption, call, justification, and salvation, cf. sq.)," and, after 
it, HUTT. and others. HOLL. (609) gives the following definition: 
Predestination, taken in a wider sense, can be defined as the 
eternal, divine decree, by which God, from His immense mercy, 
Hetermined^to give His Son as Mediator, and, through universal 
preaching, to offer Him for reception to all men who from eternity 
He foresaw would fall into sin; also through the Word and Sacra; 
ments to confer faith upon all who would not resist; tojustify all 
believers, and besides to renew those using the means of grace; to 
preserve fsiith in them until the end of life, and, in a word, to save 
those believing to the end." Sometimes those are more particu 
larly described in whose case the decree of redemption is really to 
be accomplished; they are those concerning whom God knows that 
they will believe. HOLL. (608) : { In the special or stricter sense, 
it signifies the ordination of believers Jx3 salvation, combined with 
and -pfyvua/c. The -( Mem? (the divine, general and unde 

fined decree concerning the communicating of eternal salvation to 
all sinful men who, to the end, will believe in Christ) is therefore 
more specifically defined through the irp6yvwi? (the foreknowledge 
of certain human persons or individuals, who will retain true faith 
in Christ to the last breath of life)." In the latter case, however, 
by predestination (taken in the strictest sense) only that decree is 
understood which was really based upon the general irpodsai? in 
accordance with the antecedent Trp6yv<*>ai?, in so far as it embraces 
the specific number of men who are to be saved, which decree is 
called Trpoo/Hopbr. HOLL. (608): In the most special and strict 
sense, by which Trpoopiapb- is distinguished from -/ideate and Trp6-}-vuqi^ 
and denotes the eternal purpose of God ? determinate or applied to 
certain men as individuals, whom God from the common mass of 
corruption elects to eternal life, because He distinctly foresees that 
they will believe to the end in Christ." The meaning of the last 
two distinctions is this: that, when we come to speak very ac 
curately, the conceptions of the Trp6&eate and Trpoyvuaif, contained in 
the latter statement, are merely the antecedent factors of the true 
and actual purpose (the Trpoopta^) , which factors, therefore, are 
not to be connected with the conception of predestination itself, 
when that is defined as an act or decree. Whence these two 
factors, viz. , the ^poStais and np6yvuais are also defined as the norma 
tive or directive sources from which election proceeds; the np6deaif 
being regarded as the primary or mediate normative source, and 
the irp6yvuaif as the immediate or proximate source. QUEN. (Til, 
18): " The KpMeais is the primary directing principle of election; 
yet not immediate, but mediate, for it concurs with the interven- 




foreknowledge of certain persons believing to the end^ RomT~% : 
29; (2Yit formally denotes the ordination to eternal life of those 
men who^according to the divine foreknowledge, receive and con- 
tinue to employ the means of grace. Acts 13: 48. But election 
(1) presupposes the love of God. Eph. 1: 6; (2) it formally de- 
notes the separation, from the common mass of perdition, of 
those men who He foresees will perseveringlyjbelieve in Christ, 
John 15: 19." "Another expression for predestination is, accord 
ing to Phil. 4:3; Rev. 3: 5, the writing in the Book of Life." 

[16] (a) Full Definition. HOLL. (604): i l Predestination is an 
act of the consequent divine will, by which God (moved by gratu 
itous mercy, because of the merit of Christ, to be apprehended by 
persevering faith) separated from the fallen human race, and 

ing Trpf>yv<Mif, or the foreseeing for election of individuals \vho would 
to the end believe in Christ. 

[15] Concerning the relation between predestination and elec 
tion. QUEN. (Ill, 16): " Election is a synonym of predestination, 
yet predestination and election are not logical synonyms, so as to 
have the relation of genus and species, as the Calvinists state (con 
tending that the divine predestination as a genus contains, within 
its bounds, two species, viz., election and reprobation; or, as others 
say, it contains two decrees, the one of election, the other of repro 
bation)." HUTT. (773): "But, according to the tenor of Scrip 
ture, they are grammatical synonyms, and of the same breadth. 
And, although they differ somew r hat with respect to formal 
signification, yet materially, and in relation to the subject, they 
are not distinguished; whence in Eph. 1: 4 and 5, both terms, 
election and predestination, are received in the same sense, nor is 
there an unlike example given in Scripture." HOLL. (605): 
Predestination and election agree with respect to the subject, 
because no man has been predestined to eternal salvation who has 
not been elected to the same, nor has any one been elected who 
has not been predestinated." But they differ with respect to 
formal signification. Election, according to its formal notion, re 
lates to the objects which are to be elected; and predestination, to 
the end and order of means, which lead to the end of election, or 
eternal life. For the particle pre, in the word predestination, con 
notes the priority and eternity of the divine ordination; but the 
particle e, in the word election, connotes the common aggregate of 
men, from which there is a separation of some men, and therefore 
the divine election is the separation of some men from the common 
mass of corruption, and their adoption into the inheritance of 
eternal salvation. Predestination (1) presupposes rrp6-yvuais, the 

/3 . +/ __ 



ordained to the obtaining eternal salvation for the praise of His ^ 
glorious grace, those men alone and individually who He foresaw 
would believe in Christ to the end. 

QUEN. (Ill, 19): "Predestination is an act of the divine will, 

^ Jta^^^ ^ i y ^ 

by which, before the foundations of the earth were laid, not accord- f ,\ 
ing to our works, but out of pure mercy, according to His purpose \| 
and design, which He purposed in Himself in consideration of the \ s 
merit of Christ to be apprehended by faith, God ordained to eternal ", 
life for the praise of His glorious grace such men as, by the power * ^ 
of the Holy Ghoet, through the preaching of the Gospel, would 
perseveringly and to the end believe in Christ. 

QUEN. (Ill, 14): "The peculiar and chief foundation of this x 
fundamental article is E_oh. 1 : _4-7_. 

(6) The farm of election is then thus described by QUEN. (Ill, ^ \ 
18): "It consists in the entire rd^f, or order, which God, in ^ | 
ordaining the eternal decree of election, had as His design, and * 
according to which, for the sake of His own mercy, because of the A\~ 
[ merit of Christ apprehended by faith, He elects those believing S,(* 
\ * and persevering in faith to the end of life, or, according to which 
S He fulfils in time the election decreed from eternity. From the 
; fact that election has. its ground in the preceding 
^irp6yvuoif, which are related as major and minor premises 
i, conclusion, viz., the npoopia^^ the syllogism of Predestination 
x arises: 

Every one who will perseveringly believe in Christ to the end % 
of life, will certainly be saved, and, therefore, shall be elected and . 
N^ be written in the Book of Life. 

"But Abraham, Peter, Paul, etc., will perseveringly believe in ^ 
Christ to the end of life. 

"Therefore, Abraham, Peter, Paul, etc., will certainly be saved, K 
* and, therefore, shall be elected and be written in the Book of V v , 
? \ 5 Life." (HOLL., 630.) 

vSc I (c) The causes of election are then stated thus: " The efficient cause ] 
C x of election is the will of the Triune God, freely decreeing ( Rom. \? f x 
Jp V< j8: 28; Ep_h. 1: 4; John 13: 18; 15_: 16, 19; Acts 13: 2; 2 Thess. ^ 

X> ^x2: 13); the impulsive or moving internal cause is the purely gratu- ^ ^[ . 
i l , itous grace of God (Rom. 9: 15, 16; Ep_h. 1:5; 2: 8, 9; Rom. 11: , r 
5, 6); the moving external cause is the merit of Christ, regarded 
with respect to foreseen final application (Egh. 1: 4-7)." As the 
external less principal cause, some state, Faith in Christ, and this 

[17] HUTT. (795): "Concerning the question (whether the eter 
nal election of those who are to be saved is to be assigned to the 





antecedent or the consequent will), a twofold way presents itself, 
some turning too much to the right, others too far to the left, and 
both from the path of truth, although in a diverse mode, relation, 
and end. For those who follow the side of Calvin affirm that the 
decree of election should be sought in the antecedent will of God 
alone, but in such a way, as thence to derive both the absolute and 
the particular will, and indeed also the absolute election of few men. 
Huber, on the other hand, likewise placed election in the antecedent 
will alone; and, although contending aright, against the Calvinists, 
that this will is universal, yet erroneously and falsely constructed 
thence, against the orthodox, the opinion that election is universal 
and entirely unlimited. Therefore, just as Calvin removes and 
eliminates from the decree of election all reference to faith, so 
Huber does the very act of faith. Each of these errors, deviating 
from the analogy of faith, violates it in this, that it altogether sub 
stitutes election for every consideration of righteousness, imputed 
through faith on account of Christ In this way, indeed, it is law 
ful to infer no election at all, rather than either the absolute elec 
tion of a few, or the universal election of all. For in all Scripture 
the name of the elect is never ascribed except to those alone who 
actually believe and absolutely persevere in faith. In the second 
place, even the very sound of the terms, election and elect, and their 
peculiar relation, intimate and prove a distinction or dissimilarity 
with respect to men. For the elect are so called in distinction from 
the non-elect; and yet, in fact, Christian piety and faith forbid us 
making any distinction among men in the antecedent will. There 
fore, the orthodox Church, making a separation from each of these 
errors, places election not in the sole and merdy simple antecedent will of 
God, but rather in the consequent vntt. 

[18] HOLL. (633): " Those elected by God in Christ are wretched 
sinful men; yet not all promiscuously, but those whom God from 
eternity distinctly foresaw as those who would believe in Christ to 
the end." Therefore (619), "The election to eternal life of men 
corrupted by sin was made by the most merciful God, in consider 
ation of faith in Christ remaining steadfast to the end of life." To 
guard the expression, in consideration of faith (intuitu fidei*), from 
misunderstanding, it was still farther observed by QUEN. (Ill, 36): 
; (a) Faith, and that, too, as persevering or final faith, enters into 
the sphere of eternal election, not as already afforded, but as fore 
known. For we are elected te eternal life from faith divinely fore 
seen, apprehending, to the end, the merit of Christ; (6) Faith 
enters into election not by reason of any meritorious worth, but 
with respect to its correlate, or so far as it is the only means of 


apprehending the merit of Christ; or, in other words, faith is not 
a meritorious cause of election, but only a prerequisite condition, 
or a part of the entire order divinely appointed in election;" others 
express themselves so as to mark faith as the less principal exter 
nal cause. Concerning the different expressions through which 
the relation of faith to predestination is stated, BR. (725): "Some 
of our theologians, indeed, have said that faith in Christ is the 
instrumental cause of the decree of election; others, that it is ite 
condition; some that it is the condition on the part of the object 
of election; others that it is a part of the order of predestination. 
These all practically agree with each other, and with those who call 
it the impulsive less principal cause. For all acknowledge that 
faith is not a mere condition which exercises no causality; but, as 
it is constituted for the act of saving, so is it for the act of decree 
ing salvation (virtually causing salvation), as that in consideration 
of which we have been elected, and yet not as a principal cause, of 
itself able to influence God to elect us. Whence, when faith is 
otherwise regarded under the figure of a hand or organ, by which, 
as a cause of salvation, the grace of God electing and the merit of 
Christ are apprehended, and, in this manner, is usually called an 
instrument ; yet here the relation of faith to the decree of election 
itself must be shown : where our theologians do not say that it is 
of the manner of an instrument, which the efficient principal cause, 
God, in electing, employs to produce the act of election by a real 
influx. But those who have spoken of an instrumental moral cause 
cannot understand anything else than an impulsive less principal 
cause. . . . Therefore, then, this formula of speaking remains, by 
which faith is called the impulsive cause or reason, vet not the 
chief or principal ; but with the addition, for the sake of avoiding 
ambiguity, of less principal. BAIER commends the following from 
MEISSNER: "It seems more fitting that faith be considered not 
separately as a peculiar cause of election, distinct from the merit 
qf_Christ, but joined with that merit as apprehended, so as to ren 
der both united the one impelling cause of election" For~neither 
does faith merit without the application, nor does it itself move 
God to elect, but both combined in the divine foreknowledge, i. e., 
the merit apprehended by faith, or faith apprehending the merit. 1 

Concerning the relation of prescience and predestination, HUTT. 
(Loc. c., 803): "I. The word Prescience is received in this place, 
not in a general, indefinite, and loose sense, concerning the knowl 
edge of all future things; in which sense the prescience of bad 
things, as well as of good, belongs to God, and presupposes, at the 
same time, predestination: but restrictedly and determinatively to 


certain matter and subject, namely, to prescience of faith in 
Christ, which is peculiar to the elect. This determinative distin 
guishing of prescience always presupposes predestination, accord 
ing to Rom. 8: 29, whcm He foreknew, viz., according to the 
interpretation of Augustine, those who would believe in His Son, 
1I< ul*o did predestinate; and He indeed predestinated them to be 
conformed to the image of His Son. For in this passage the 
Apostle does. not treat of the antecedent will of God, by reason of 
which He wishes all men to be conformed to the image of His Son, 
but he treats of those who already, in the very decree of God, are 
conformed to this image. II. This prescience is not the predes- 
tination itself of God, or the decree of election, as Calvin affirms. 
. . . For the Apostle, in the words just cited, expressly considers 
prescience and predestination as two distinct things; saying, whom 
He did foreknow, He also did predestinate ; otherwise, a most sense 
less notion, such as this, would appear: Whom He predestinated, 
He predestinated. . . . Therefore, it is decided aright that the 
word prescience in this passage denotes, according to the Hebrew 
idiom, not the simple knowledge of God, but that which is joined 
with approbation and delight, because determined to an object 
pleasing to God, viz., to Christ apprehended by faith, or, what 
amounts to the same thing, to faith apprehending the merit of 
Christ. III. This prescience, which we have said enters into the 
decree of election, is not regarded as a cause, on account of, or be 
cause of, which election takes place, or salvation itself is conferred 
upon the elecT; because it is not an essential part, constituting 
election itself, but is added to predestination only as an adjunct, 
andjbhat, too, inseparable. For although prescience, since it is 
placed in a lower grade, can be sometimes unaccompanied by pre 
destination, as happens in regard to the sins and wicked actions of 
men, yet, with predestination determined because of a higher 
grade, it is necessary that the lower should always be included. 
Hence the Apostle says: The foundation of God standeth sure, 
having this seal, "The Lord knoweth them that are His," 2 T_im. 
2 : 19. Moreover, He knew this not only in time, but foreknew it 
from all eternity. This knowledge or foreknowledge is therefore 
an eye, as it were, of the eternal election; for he who would de 
stroy this would render our election blind and destroy it. 

[19] HOLL. (631): "The decree is relative, because when God 
predestined certain fallen men to eternal life, and, indeed, some 
rather than others, He regarded something outside of Himself as 
an impulsive external cause, viz., the merit of Christ, to be appre- 
Eended by persevering faith." 


QUEN. (Ill, 31): " Predestination to eternal life is not absolute, 
but is founded upon Christ as Mediator! The antithesis of th e 
Calvinists, who exclude the merit of Christ from the causes of elec 
tion, and refer to means of accomplishing it furnished in time, 
and, therefore, deny that Christ is the meritorious cause of our 
election. The doctrine of Calvin is accordingly distinguished 
from that of the Lutheran Church, in that, according to the former, 
predestination rests upon an absolute decree of God ("by which 
God absolutely of Himself, without a prerequisite condition or 
without outward _respect to any other cause or intervening reason, 
wills and does something, according to the manner in which He 
absolutely willed to create and preserve it. QUEN. ) ; and hence, 
likewise, it is not the earnestly intended will of God that all men 
should be saved unto whom the Gospel is preached, and, accord 
ingly, a distinction is made between the manifest will, or that of 
the sign, and the secret will, or that of the purpose. 

[20] HOLL. (631): " God indeed decreed absolutely and micon- 
ditionnlly to save this or that one, because He certainly foresaw 

his persevering faith in Christ" If it be asserted of the decree 

that it is not conditioned, it appears to contradict the former 
assertion that it is not absolute. HOLL. (632) explains the appar- 
ent contradiction by the following: "When the decree of predes- 
tmation is said to be not absolute, it must not be regarded on that 
account conditional. For the idea is not, that God from eternity 
would elect this or that one to salvation, if he would believe in 
Christ, and depart hence in the true faith, but because he would 
believe and would persevere. Faith regarded in the will of God, 
before the act of predestination, is therefore indeed a condition, 
under which He the salvation of all; yet in the decree itself it 
is not a condition under which the election was made, but a reason 
by which God was moved to elect. Therefore, the decree should 
not be denied to be absolute, when considered with respect to that 
which is conditional; yet not in such a manner as to exclude the 
consideration of the a priori reason outside of God, as a part in the 
order of predestination, which is, without doubt, faith in Christ 
foreseen from eternity, or, what amounts to the same thing, the 
merit of Christ, apprehended by faith. For the decree must not 
be confounded with the antecedent will of God, which, we affirm, 
from the Word of God, does not exclude a condition, but appoints 
it, Rom, jl: 23. " 

[21] QUEN. (Ill, 21): "Through mortal sins the elect may 
altogether lose and banish the Holy Ghost, faith and the grace of 
God, and thus for a time become subjects of condemnation, yet 

thi-v -:nint be wantm- !> the -nd. and prrish .-ti-rnally. Total 
^ loss of grace is one thing, final loss of grace is another. That is 
/r?t/ total, by which any one is entirely deprived of the grace of God; N - 
/ that is final, by which any one, shortly before death, departs from p: 

the faith, and dies in unbelief/ ^ 

[22] HOLL. (642) : "A regenerate man in the midst of the course 
of his life is certain of his election conditionally (Phil. 2: 12); but, 
at the end of life, he rejoices in the absolute certainty of his pre 
destination. " 

[23] HOLL. (644): " The word reprobation (airofaupaeia) is not ^ 
found in just so many syllables in Holy Scripture. The word ^ 
6M///oc is used, 1 Cor. 9: 27; 2 Cor. 13: 5; Heb. 6: 8." QUEN. 
(III, 21) : " It is otherwise called TT /><>) pa<t>i/ tif -;> ^>a, 4. 

[24] BRCHM. : "When the case of reprobation is considered, - 
there is need of pious caution. We must avoid considering God 5 
the cause of reprobation in the same manner as He is the cause of j 
^election. For He is the cause of election, both with regard to His^ >j 
**" effecting it and with regard to the end ; both with regard to the ^ 
decrees and to all the means leading to the end. But the matter J 
is different in reprobation. For, since reprobation is eternal per- v 
dition, to which there is no direct way except through sin, and ^ 
especially unbelief, every one must see that reprobation cannot be 
ascribed to God as effecting it, inasmuch as it is either damnation 
itself or sin, the means leading thither. The true cause of repro- 
bation is in man himself, and is undoubtedly the obstinate con 
tempt of the grace offered in the Uospel. . . . God, meanwhile, is 
not the indifferent witness of reprobation, but, as the just avenger 



l~~ X^ft 



_ of crimes and of despised grace, is occupied with certain special 
~ acts concerning the wicked and unbelieving, .who, although they 
have been for a long time admonished, invited, and punished, yet ^ 
out of pure malice have continued to despise and resist the Gospel. 





t^g-- ~t^~J r a^^ef s-*^9 


31. Statement of the Subject. 


^HE redemption designed by God from eternity was accom 
plished in time by His only begotten Son, Jesus Christ, . 
[1] and of this we are now to treat. The subject will be dis- $ 
cussed under three heads : I. The Person of the Redeemer. 
II. The Work by which He accomplished Redemption. III. 
The several States in which He appeared from the time of His * 

[1] HOLL. (650): The Redeemer of the human race is Jesus 

Christ. The Redeemer is called Jesus, /. ., Saviour, because He ! 
was to save His people from their sins, Matt 1": 21." (655): "He I 
is called Christ, / . e., anointed, because He was anointed by the ^ 
Holy Ghost as our king, priest, and prophet, Jojin 1: 41." The * 
Dogmaticians prove that Jesus Christ is the true Messiah, in whom x 
all the prophecies of the Old Testament concerning the Messiah arey 
exactly fulfilled. HOLL. (675): " Proof. (1) Whoever is God xV 
and man is the true Messiah. But Jesus, etc. The major premise * 
is evident from 2 Sam. 7: 12, 13; Ps. 110: 1; Micah 5: 1; Jer. 23: 5 ^ 
. . . (2) Whoever was born of the seed of. Abraham, of the tribe ^ 
of Judah, of the royal branch of David, and of a pure virgin, is the 
true Messiah. The major premise, from Gen. 22: 18; 49: 10; 2 
Sam. 7: 12; Is. 7: 14. The minor, from Luke 3: 23; 1: 34. (3) J 
Whatever ruler of Israel, as God, was begotten from eternity, and 
as man was born in the fulness of time at Bethlehem, is the true 
Messiah. The major premise, from Micah 5: 2. The minor, from 
Matt. 2:6. . . . (4) He is the true Messiah, for whose approach 
a divinely-appointed herald prepared the way. The major, from 
IS. 40: 3; Mai. 3: 1. The minor, from Mark 1: 2, 3. . . . (5) 
Whatever king of Zion entered Jerusalem poor and humble, riding 
upon an ass, is the true Messiah, Zach. 9:9. . . . (6) Whoever 
is the God, or Redeemer, according to the law of consanguinity, Job 
19: 25; the prophet like Moses, Deut. 13: 15; a universal king, 
9:9; .. 72: 8; a priest according to the order of Melcliize x - 



/K^dix ^ Xf*&?~>t*^t 

j. ,t_, y^^ Jr~ 

i^*+. 01^ ->-^-c^^-*---^_ &+~-&* fa*~&*~eC -t+^-4cs** i c-*^**+ **++ f&~L /d & **&*^is*^iap\^es3**- 


dek, Ps. 110: 4; a priest interceding for sinners, Is. 53: 12; who is 
to pass through the extremity of suffering, Ps. 22; Is. 53; who is 
to die, Dan. 9: 26; who is to be buried, Is. 53: 9; who is to be 
free from corruption; to descend to the dead and to rise again, Ps. 
16: 10; to ascend to heaven, Ps. 68: 18; to sit at the right hand of 
God the Father, Ps. 110: 1, is the promised Messiah. All these 
things the New Testament declares of Jesus of .Nazareth." 


__ 32. #/ the Personal Union. 

In Christ the Redeemer we recognize a duality of natures 
and a unity of person, as expressed in the statement : "In 

Christ, born of the Virgin Mary, are two natures, a divine, that 
of the Word (6 A6>o f ), and a human nature, so united that Christ is 
one person." (CmiN., Loc. Th., I, 75.) We are to treat, there 
fore, in succession, first, of the two natures in Christ, and sec 
ondly, of the person of Christ. 

I. Of the Two Natures in Christ. Christ is God and man. 
This is otherwise thus expressed : He exists in tw T o natures, 
the divine and the human. [1] The divine nature He has of 
God the Father, and from eternity; the human nature He 
assumed in time from the Virgin Mary. [2] Each of these 
natures is to be regarded as truly genuine and entire, [3] for 
Christ is true God and true man. [4] As true man He par 
ticipates in all the natural weaknesses to which human nature 
is subject since the Fall He participates therein, however, not 
in consequence of a natural necessity, but in consequence of 
His own free will, for the accomplishment of His mediatorial 
work ; for, as He was born of a human being, the Virgin Mary, 
but not begotten of a human father, His human nature did 
not inherit any of the consequences of Adam s sin. [5] This 
does not prevent us from ascribing to Christ a true, complete 
human nature, like our own, as this is, indeed, predicated of 
Adam when not yet fallen, inasmuch as original sin, that we 
have inherited in consequence of the sin of Adam, has not 
given man another nature. It does, however, follow from the 
peculiar circumstances connected with the birth of Christ, and 
from the peculiar relation w 7 hich the divine A<5yof sustains to 
this human nature, that certain peculiarities must be predi- 

-,/^f %f<~~*~. -4- c+~^jf- 


cated of the human nature of Christ which distinguish it from 
that of other men. These are (1) the mmnonaia [i. e., want of 
personality]; (2) the avaiiap-ni^a [i. e., sinlessness] ; (3) the #m- 
gularis aniinsR Ct wrporis excellentia [i. e., the peculiar excellence 
of soul and body.] [6] The first results from the peculiar 
relation which the divine Adyo? entered into with the human 
nature ; for this latter is not to be regarded as at any time 
subsisting by itself and constituting a person by itself, since 
the /<J}of did not assume a human person, but only a human 
nature. Therefore there is negatively predicated of the human 
nature the awiroaraaia, inasmuch as the human nature has no 
personality of its own ; and there is positively predicated of it 
the frvrroaraaia, inasmuch as this human nature has become pos 
sessed of another hypostasis, that of the divine nature. The 
avafiapTriaia (sinlessness) is expressly taught in many passages of 
the Scriptures (2 Cor. 5: 21; Heb. 7: 26; Is. 53: 9; Dan. 9: 24; 
Luke 1: 35 ; 1 Peter 1: 19 ; _2: 22), and follows also from the 
supernatural birth of Christ. The singular excellence of soul 
and body is a consequence of His sinlessness. 

II. Of the Person of Christ. The person of the Redeemer is 
constituted, when the u-yw, the Second Person of the Godhead, 
the Son of God, unites Himself with human nature, and this 
so firmly and intimately that the two natures now united con 
stitute One Person, which is that of the Redeemer, the God- 
man. [7] The act itself by which this is accomplished is 
called unitio personalis. HOLL. (665): " The divine action by 
which the Son of God assumed human nature, in the womb 
of the Virgin Mary, into the unity of His own person." [8] 
This act is chosen and determined upon by the entire holy 
Trinity, by whom the substance that constitutes the human 
nature is prepared, and by whom this is united with the divine 
nature ; but this act is accomplished in the second person of 
v the Godhead, who alone has become man. [9] This Second 
Person of the Godhead, the ?.<5yo?, in the act of uniting holds 
such a relation to the human nature that He, the u-yos, imparts 
the personality, [10] and is in general the efficient agent 
through which the union is accomplished ; for it is He that 
sustains an active relation to the human nature, which He 
assumes, whilst the human nature stands in a passive relation 



to Him. [11] This firm union of the divine and human 
natures, regarded as a condition, is then called unio personalis sen 
hypostatica [i. c., personal or hypostatic union]. HOLL. (679): 
" The personal union is a conjunction of the two natures, divine 
and human, subsisting in one hypostasis of the Son of God, 
producing a mutual and an indissoluble communion of both 
natures." [12] And the result of this activity of the u-yog is, 
that the hypostasis of the divine nature now has become also 
the hypostasis of the human nature, i. c., both natures have 
now one hypostasis, that of the /<$}<*, and together form one 
person, that of the Redeemer, the God-man. [13] In conse 
quence thereof the union of the two natures is so close and 
inseparable [14] that the one can no longer be conceived of as 
without or away from the other, but both are to be regarded 
as in all respects united, [15] yet in such a way that each of 
the two natures in this union retains its own essential charac- 
ter and peculiarities as before, and remains unmingled with 
the other. [16] So the Scriptures teach. But it is impossible 
to form a correct conception of the way and manner in which 
these two natures are united in the One Person, because the 
Scriptures teach us only the union itself, and not the mode in 
which it is effected. We shall have to content ourselves, 
therefore, with guarding against false conceptions that might 
be entertained in regard to this union. [17] Accordingly, we 
say that the union is " (1) not an essential one, by which two 
natures coalesce in one essence (against the Eutychians) ; (2) 
not a natural one, such as that of the soul and body in man ; 
(3) not an accidental one, such as (a) between two or more dif- 
fererit qualities united in one Subject (as whiteness and sweet 
ness are united in milk); (/>) between a quality and a substance 
(as we find in a learned man); (c) between two substances that 
are accidentally united (as between beams that happen to be 
fastened together); (4) not a merely verbal one, arising either 
from a sinecure title (as when a man is called a counselor of 
his sovereign, which title was never bestowed upon him be 
cause of counsels he had given), or from the use of figurative 
language (as when Herod is called a fox); finally, (5) not an. 
habitual or relative one, which may exist, although the parties 
to this union may be separated and far apart. (There are 


many varieties of this relative union, such as moral, between 
friends ; domestic, between husband and wife ; political, between 
citizens ; ecclesiastical, between members of the Church.)" [18] 
HULL. (679). On_the other hand, we may predicate jQJMjiig. 
union, positively, that 

" (1) It is true and real, because it exists between extremes 
that really adhere, there being no separation or distance be 
tween them ; 

" (2) It is a personal one. (but not a union of persons), and 
interpenetrative (perichoristica) ; * 

" (3) It is a perpetually enduring one." (See Notes 0, 7, 8.) 

[1] HFKFFH. (260): " By the natures, the two sources or parts, 
so to speak, are understood, of which the person of Christ has been 
constituted, namely, a Divine nature and a human nature." Of 
Person it is remarked: " The Person of our Redeemer is here con^ 
sidered, not as qgapitoc, or such as it was from eternity before the 
incarnation, but as tvoapKos, or such as it began to be in the fulness 
of time, through the taking of our human nature into His own 
divine person." (HoLL., 656.) 

General Definition of Nature and Pemm. CHMN. (de duab. nat., 
1) : " Essence, or substance, or nature, is that which of itself is com- 

mon to many individuals of the same species, and which embraces 

the entire essential perfection of each of them. 

Person or individual is "something peculiar, possessing indeed 
the entire and perfect substance of the same species, but deter 
mined and limited by a characteristic and personal peculiarity, 
and thus subsists of itself, separated or distinguished from the 
other individuals of the same species, not in essence, but in num 
ber. For a person is an indivisible, intelligent, incommunicable 
substance, which neither is a part of another, nor is sustained in 
another, nor has dependence upon another object such as the sep 
arated soul has upon the body that is to be raised up. Therefore, 
the names of the essence or natures are fc^f, difytwnfrw, divinity, 
humanity, divine nature, human nature, divine essence, human 
substance. The designations of the person are God, maw." 

Concerning the difference of signification, in which the term 
nature or essence is employed with reference to God and to man, cf. 
chapter, "Of the Holy trinity," note 14, p. 141. 

QUEN. (Of the Divine Nature of Christ (III, 75)): "The divine 
nature otherwise signifies the divine essence, one in number, com- 

*Pfriehori#<ica. See \ 33, Note 2. 



mon to all three Persons, and entire in each; but, in the article Of 
the Person of Christ, this is not considered absolutely, in so far as 
it is common to the three persons of the Godhead, but relatively, 
so far as it subsists in the person of the Son of God, and, as by the 
manner of its existence, it is limited to the Second Person of the 
Trinity. Whence it is true that the entire divine essence is united 
to human nature, but only in one of its persons, viz., the second." 

[2] QUEN. (Ill, 75): The incarnate Person consists of two 
natures, divine and human. The divine nature He possesses from 
eternity, from God the Father, through eternal, true, and properly 
named generation of substance; whence Christ is also the true, nat- 
ural, and eternal God, and Son of God. A true and pure human 
nature He received in time, of the Virgin Mary." 

A twofold generation is, therefore, distinguished in Christ : one 
"an eternal generation, through which He is the Son of God;" 
and another, "a generation in time, through which He is man, or 
the Son of man. Gal. 4:4." (En., 457.) 

[3] HOLL. (659): The Council of Chalcedon : We confess that. ^J 
He is true God and true man, the latter consisting of a rational \ 
soul and a body, co-essential with the Father according to the God- \ 
head, and co-essential with us according to the manhood, in all v5 
things like unto us, sin only excepted. C 

SCHRZR. (177): The antithesis of the Eutychians, who indeed * 
admit two natures prior to the act of union, but affirm that from I 
that time the human nature has been altogether absorbed by the N 

QUEN. (Ill, 75): " With regard to the human nature we must 
consider: 1, its truth ; 2, its completeness; 3, its fy/oowuc (identity 
of essence). The first excludes a mere appearance; the second, 
incompleteness; the third, contrariety of essence (crepown a)." 

GRH. (Ill, 373): "In Christ there is a true cmd perfect divine 
nature, and hence Christ is also true, natural, and eternal God. We 
say that in Christ there are not only divine gifts, but also a true 
and perfect divine nature; nor do we simply say that He is and is 
called God, but that He is true, natural, and eternal God, in order, 
by this means, to separate our confession the more distinctly from 
the blasphemies of the Photinians, and all opponents of the divine 

(Id. Ill, 400): In Christ there ifl a true, complete, and perfect 
human nature, and for this reason Christ is also true, perfect, and 
natural man. By truth of human nature is meant that the Word 
took upon Himself not an appearance, or mere outward form of 
human nature, but in reality became a man. By completeness of 


human nature is meant that He took, into the unity of His person, 
all the essential parts of human nature, not only a body, but also 
a rational soul; since His flesh was flesh pervaded by soul. Nor 
is it said only that He was, but that He still is, a man : because 
[e never has laid aside, nor ever will lay aside, what He has once 
assumed." These expressions are directed against the Monothe- 
letes, who acknowledged a human mind in Christ, but denied to 
5 Christ a human will." (BRCHM. ) 

vj [4] HOLL. (656): " 1. The true and eternal dwine nature is proved 
v by the most complete arguments, derived (a) from the divine 
| names (arg. wo^aartKoi^ ) ; (6) from the attributes peculiar to the 
1" true God alone (arg. t<5<w^ar</coZc) ; (c) from the personal and essen- 
itial acts of God (arg. kvepyrjTmoiq ) ; (d) from the religious worship 
.due God alone (arg. Aar/>ewoZf ) ;" cf. chapter on the Trinity, >~ 

It "II. That Christ is true man, is shown (a) from human names v 
V.Jqhn 8: 40; 1 Tim. 2: 5); (6) from the essential parts of a man 
^Jqhp 2: 21; Heb. 2: 14; Luke 24: : . ( .) ; John 10: 15; Matt. 26: ;JS; 
-.Luke 2: 52; John 5: 21; Matt. 26: 39); (c) from the attributes J 
.peculiar to a true man (Matt. 4:2; Jojin 19: 28; Matt. 25: 37; ^ 
H^uke 19: 41; John 11: 33); (d) from human works (Luke 2: 46, 
48; Matt. 4: 1; 26: 55); (6)Jrom_the genealogy of Christ as a man 
f(in the ascending line, Luke 3: 23; in the descending line, Matt.\V| 

[5] CHMN. (de duab. nat, 11): . . . "Christ, conceived of the ^ v 
Holy Ghost, took upon Himself a human nature without sin, pure^l ^ ^ 
Therefore the infirmities, which as punishments accompany sin, ^ i 
would not have been in the flesh of Christ by necessity of the con- * V j 
N<; dition, but His body could have been kept clear and exempt from *s^ 
fVhese infirmities. Sinful flesh was not necessary to His being true j ^sl 
man, as Adam, before the Fall, without the infirmities which are v " 
punishments, was true man. But for our sakes, and for our salva-T^^; 
tion, the incarnate Christ, to commend His love to us, willingly^ \ 
took upon Himself these infirmities, that thus He might bear the -^ I 
punishment transferred from us to Himself, and might free us from 
^ Jwfit." HuTT..(l- c., 125): "That He took upon Himself these, not^J JV 
^x"l V* ^ ar as ^ e y have reference to any guilt, but only as they have v ^ 

I the condition of punishment; neither, indeed, these individually^ 
f < *^and collectively, but only such as the work of Redemption rendered 
? J ^it necessary for Him to take upon Himself, and which detract 
^i" ^nothing from the dignity of His nature." But a distinction is 
? | <\f | ^made between natural and personal infirmities. 

HOLL. (657): il The natural infirmities common to men are_those^ 


->^~^+ >Ci-ft^&. . &HAAJ, -JA. ^-i-te , 


M tv 


which, since the Fall, exist in all nieii^r. g. , to hunger, to thirst, 
to be wearied, to suffer cold and heat, to be grieved, to be angry, 
to be troubled, to weep. Since they are without guilt, Christ, ac 
cording to the testimony of Holy Scripture, took them upon Him 
self, not by constraint, but freely; not for His own sake, but for 
our sake" (QuE\. (Ill, 76): "that He might perform the work 
of a mediator, and become a victim for our sins"), "not forever, 
but for a time, namely, in the state of humiliation, and not retain 
ing the same in the state of exaltation. . . . Personal infirmities are 
those which proceed from particular causes, and derive their origin 
cither from an imperfection of formative power in the one beget 
ting. as consumption. gout; or from a particular crime, as intem 
perance in eating and drinking, such as fever, dropsy, etc.; or from 
a special divine judgment, as the diseases of the family of -Jek 
(2 Sam. 3: 29). 7Vtw tire altoyether remote from Ilie ntn*t liohj human 
ity of Christ, because to have assumed these would not have been of ad 
vantage to the human race, and would have detracted from human 

[6] HOLL. (057): c To the human nature of Christ there belong 
certain individual designations, by which, as by certain distinctive 
characteristics or prerogatives, He excels other men; such are (a) 
avwooTaota, the being without a peculiar subsistence, since this is 
replaced by the divine person (iV&rraer/f) of the Son of God, as one 
far more exalted. If the human nature of Christ had retained its 
peculiar subsistence, there would have been in Christ two persons, 
and therefore two mediators, contrary to 1 Tjm. 2: 5. The reason 
is, because a person is formally constituted in its being by a sub 
sistence altogether complete, and therefore unity of person is to be 
determined from unity of subsistence. Therefore, one or the other 
nature, of those which unite in one person, must be without its 
own peculiar subsistence; and, since the divine nature, which is 
really the same as its subsistence, cannot really be without the 
same, it is evident that the absence of a peculiar subsistence must 
be ascribed to the human nature." Still, a distinction must be 
made between dmrogrqg/a and kwmooTaoia. QUEN. (Ill, 77): "That 
is in im6aTarof which does not subsist of itself and according to its 
peculiar personality; but that is hiirfaTarw which subsists in 
another, and becomes the partaker of the hypostasis of another. 
When, therefore, the human nature of Christ is said to be dw7r<5<n-r<;, 
nothing else is meant than that it does not subsist of itself, and 
according to itself, in a peculiar personality; moreover,^ is called 
because it has become a partaker of the hypostasis of 

another, and subsists in the 

&s s^t-dL Ct2 

OLL. ^658/ considers the following objections: " You say, If 
the human nature is without a peculiar subsistence, the same will 
be more imperfect than our nature, which is arftwnwrarof, or sub 
sisting of itself. Reply: The perfection of an object is to be 
determined from its essence, and not from its subsistence. The 
observation of GRH. (Ill, 421) is also of importance: 
has a twofold meaning. Absolutely, that is said to be 
which subsists neither in its own vTroardan^ nor in that of another, 
which has neither essence nor subsistence, is neither in itself, nor 
in another, but is purely negative. In this sense, the human 
nature of Christ cannot be said to be dwrroaraTov. Relatively, that 
is said to be avmoararw, which does not subsist in its own, but in 
the vTToardaif of another; which indeed has essence, but not person 
ality and subsistence peculiar to itself. In this sense, the flesh of 
Christ is said to be dwTiwrarof, because it is ew Trocrrarof, subsisting in 
the ^yof." "The statement of some, that the starting-point of 
the incarnation is the dwnoaraaia of the flesh intervening between 
that subsistence, on the one hand, by which the mass whereof the 
body of Christ was formed subsisted as a part of the Virgin, not by 
its own subsistence and that of the Virgin ; and the subsistence, on 
the other hand, whereby the human nature, formed from the 
sanctified mass by the operation of the Holy Ghost in the first 
moment of incarnation, began to subsist with the very subsistence 
of the ?<$yoc, communicated to it, is not to be received in such a 
sense as though the flesh of Christ was at any time entirely dvtfTnforarof; 
but, because in our thought, such an dvimwraaia is regarded prior 
to its reception into the subsistence of the Wyoc, not with regard to 
the order of time, but to that of nature. The flesh and soul were not 
first united into one person ; but the formation of the flesh, by the Holy 
Ghost, from the separated and sanctified mass, the giving of a soul to 
this flesh as formed, the taking up of the formed and animated flesh into 
the subsistence of the ?<tyoc, and the conception of the formed, animated, 
and subsisting flesh in the u-omb of the virgin, were simultaneous." 
t C6) dva/MpTwia. CHEMN. (de duab. nat., 13, 14): "For this 
reason Gabriel says to Mary, The Holy Ghost shall come upon 
thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee, so that 
what shall be born of thee will be holy. Therefore, the working 
of the Holy Ghost caused the Virgin Mary without male seed to 
conceive and be with child. And the Holy Ghost so sanctified, 
and cleansed from every spot of sin, the mass which the Son of 
God, in the conception, assumed from the flesh and blood of 
Mary, that that which is born of Mary was holy, Is.. 53: 9; Daji. 
9: 24; Luke 1: 35; 2 Cor. 5: 21; Heb. 7: 26; 1 Pet. 1: 19; 2: 22. 



(QuEN. (Ill, 77): "I say inherent, not imputative, sinlessness; 
for our sins were really imputed to Him, and He was made sin for 
us, 2 Cor. 5: 21.") 

SCHRZR. (189): Christ never sinned, nor was He even able to 
sin. We prove the statement that He was not even able to sin, or 
that He was impeccable, as follows: (Q) He who is like men, sin 
only excepted, cannot be peccable. For, since all men are pec- 
cable, Clin-t would lie like them also with regard to sin and pecca 
bility, which contradicts the apostle, Heb. 7: 26. (/3) He who is 
both holy by His origin, and is exempt from original sjn, who can 
never have a depraved will, and constitutes one person with God 
Himself, is clearly impeccable. (?) He who is higher than tl7e 
angels is altogether impeccable^ (<*) He to whom the Holy Ghost_ 
has been given without measure, is also holy and just without 
measure, and therefore cannot sin. 

(c) An eminent excellence of soul and body. QTKN. (III. 78): "A 
threefold perfection of soul, viz., of intellect, will, and desire." 
(HoLL. (658): "The soul of Christ contains excellences of wis- 
dom, Luke 2: 47; John 7: 46, and of holiness.") "The perfec 
tion of body; (a) The .highest evKpama, a healthful and uniform 
temperament of body. (/?) d0avaaia t or immortality " (HoLL. (ib. ) 
which belongs to Him, both because of the soundness of an im 
peccable nature, Rom. 6: 23, and through the indissoluble bond of 
the personal union. Christ, therefore, is immortal, by reason of an 
intrinsic principle, and the fact that He died arose from an ex 
trinsic principle, and according to a voluntary arrangement, John 
10: 17, 18. Yet, in the death which was voluntarily submitted to, 
the body of Christ remained cuttfaprov, or exempt from corruption, 
Ps. 16: 10; Acts 2: 31.") (y) " The greatest elegance and beauty 
of form, Ps. 45: 2." (HOLL. (ib.) : "The beauty of Christ s body 
is inferred from the excellence of the soul inhabiting it, . . . and 
from the immediate operation of the Holy Ghost, by whose effica 
cious presence the most glorious temple of Christ s body was 
formed." QUEN. (Ill, 78): "The passage, < He was despised and 
rejected of men, Is. 53: 3, refers to the deformity arising from the 
wounds of the passion. ) 

I [7] CHMN. (de duab. nat., 18): "It is not sufficient to know 

_and to believe that in Christ there are, in some way or other, two 
natures, divine and human, but we must add to this that, in the_ 
hypostatic union, they are so closely joined, that there is one and 
the same subsistence consisting of these two natures, and subsisting 
in two natures." 

HOLL. (668): " The divine and human natures existing in the 


i 9 ^L-^Ctf <T ***^- *"** 

4^^c4e^/ +~t & 3t<f&^o, 7^lu^>-e^^- T-~ /& ^X~* ^ / 

.one united person of the Son 01 God have one and the same 
hypostasis, yet have it in a diverse mode. For the divine nature 
has this primarily, of itself and independently; but the human 
nature has this secondarily, because of the personal union, and 
therefore by partaking of it from another (Lat. participative)." 

[8] BR. (461) : " The union of the human nature with the divine 
consists in this, that the natures are so joined that they become 
one person." Expressions of like import are: odpnuciq, ha&pnuais, 
capnoyevvrtcia, incarnation, becoming man, becoming body (incorpo- 

ratio, ivavtipunjjaiq and evCTw//drw<Hf), assumption (TrpdcA^^f). 

QUEN. (Ill, 80): "The basis of this mystery is found in John 
1: 14; Gal. 4: 4; 1 Tim. 3: 16; Heb. 2: 14, 16; Rom. 9: 5." 

Definition. HOLL. (665): "The incarnation is a divine act, by 
which the Son of God, in the womb of His mother, the Virgin 
Mary, took into the unity of His person a human nature, consub- 
stantial with us, but without sin, and destitute of a subsistence of 
its own, and communicated to the same both His divine person 
and nature, so that Christ now subsists forever, as the God-man, in 
two natures, divine and human, most intimately united." 

[9] GRH. (Ill, 413): "The question is asked, How is the 
work of incarnation ascribed to the Father and Holy Ghost, so 
that, nevertheless, the Son alone is said to be incarnate ? We dis 
tinguish between (1) the sanctification of the mass whereof the 
body of Christ was formed, which cleansed it from every stain of 
sin, and (2) the formation of the body of Christ from that sancti 
fied mass by divine power, which twofold action is common to the 
entire Trinity, and (3) the assumption of that body into the person 
of the Myof, which is peculiar to the Son of God. Whence the 
work of incarnation, so far as the act is concerned, is said to be com 
mon to the entire Trinity ; but, so far as the end of the assumed flesh, 
which is the person of the Myoc, is concerned, it is peculiar to the 
Son. So far as the effecting or production of the act is concerned, 
it is said to be a work ad extra and essential, or common to the entire 
Trinity. So far as its termination or relation is concerned, it is a 
work ad extra and personal, or peculiar to the Son.* The act of 
assumption proceeds from the divine virtue common to the three 
persons; the end of the assumption is the person peculiar to the 
Son. The Father sent the Son into the world. The Holy Ghost, 
coming upon the drops of blood from which the body of Christ was 
formed, sanctified and cleansed them from all sin, in order that that 
which would be born of Mary should be holy, and by divine power 

* Compare chapter on the Trinity, note 22. 

/3&U* &r>*444sr* , 


-A * ; 


so wrought m the blessed Virgin that, contrary to the order of 
nature, she conceived offspring without male seed. The Son de 
scended from heaven, overshadowed the Virgin, came into flesh, and 
became flesh by partaking of the same, by manifesting Himself in 
the same, and by taking it into the unity of His person." (In 
Luke 1: 35, "The power of the Highest shall overshadow thee," 
is generally understood as referring to the Son.) HOLL. (661): 
Overshadowing denotes the mysterious and wonderful filling of 
the temple of the body, formed by the Holy Ghost. For the Son 
of God overshadowed the Virgin Mary, while He descended in an 
inscrutable manner into the womb of the Virgin, and by a peculiar 
assimilation filled and united to Himself a particle of the Virgin s 
blood excited by the Holy Spirit, so that He dwelt in it bodily, as 
in His own temple." (Id. 661 and 662): " The conception of the 
God-man is referred to the Holy Ghost, Luke 1: 35: (a) because 
the entire work of fructifying is ascribed to Him, Gen 1:2; (A) in 
order that the purity of the particle of blood, from which the flesh 
of Christ grew, might be the more evident; (c) that thus the cause 
of the generation of Christ as a man, and of our regeneration, 
might l)e the same, viz. , the Holy Ghost. The material source, and 
that the entire source, of the conception and production of Christ, the 
is Mary, the pure Virgin (Is" 7: 14), born of the royal pedi 

gree of David, and therefore of the tribe of Judah (Luke 3; Acts 
2: 30). The material, partial_and proximate source is the quickened 
seed of the Virgin ( Ilel,. 2: 14. 16)." 

Against the above, Vorstius, following the Socinians, asserts: 
That the Holy Ghost in forming Christ, the man, supplied the 
place of male seed, yea, even of man himself, and that nothing was 
absent from this generation of Christ except the agency and seed of 
a male. " GERHARD, in reply, asks (III, 417) : Whether, because 
jof the peculiar work of the Holy Ghost in the conception of Christ, 
fit is right to call Him the father of Christ ?" and answers: "By 
/no means; for none of those acts which are ascribed to the Holy 
j Ghost, in this work, confers upon Him the right and title of father. 
The devout old authors confine this action to three points. The 
first is the immediate energy which gave the Virgin the power of 
conceiving offspring, contrary to the order of nature, without male 
seed. The second is the miraculous sanctification, which sanctified, 
i. e. , cleansed from sin, the mass of which the body of the Son of 
God was formed. The third is the mysterious union, which joined 
the human and divine natures into one person. The Holy Ghost 
not the spermatic, but (a) the formative (rf^w/?yty), (b) the sancti- 


(c) the completing 

cause of conception. 


But, because of none of these operations can the Holy Ghost be 
called the father of Christ, because the flesh of Christ was not be-, 
gotten of the essence of the Holy Ghost, but of the substance of tin* 
Virgin Mary. Of the Holy Ghost, does not denote the material, 
but the efficient cause and operation. . .- . When we say. { Of the 
Holy Ghost, the of is potential/ 

[10] CHEM. (de duab. nat., 23): "The human nature did not 
assume the divine, nor did man assume God, nor did the divine 
person assume a human person; but the divine nature of the Uyt^ 
or God the /.ow, or the person of the Son of God, subsisting from 
eternity in the divine nature,, assumed in the fulness of time a cer 
tain mass of human nature, so that in Christ there is an assuming 
nature, viz. , the divine, and an assumed nature, viz.. the human. 
In other cases, human nature is always the nature of a certain 
individual, whose peculiarity it is to subsist in a certain hypostasis, 
which is distinguished by a characteristic property from the other 
hypostases of the same nature. Thus each man has a soul of his 
own. But in the incarnate Christ, the divine nature subsisted of 
itself before this union, and indeed from eternity. -Yet the mass of\ 
the assumed nature did not thm subsist of itself before this union, so that 
before this union there was a body and soul belonging to a certain and 
distinct individual, i. e. , a peculiar person subsisting in itself, which, 
aftenvards the Son of God assumed. But in the very act of conception, ( 
the Son of God assumed this mass of human nature into the unity of His \ 
person, to subsist and be sustained therein, and, by assuming it, made it j 
His own, so that this body is not that of another individual or another I 
person, but the body is peculiar to the Son of God Himself, and the soul ( 
is the peculiar soul of the Son of God Himself. " (Id. Loc. c. Th., t~ 
76) : "Since in the incarnate Christ there are two intelligent, indi 
vidual natures, and yet only one person, because there is one Christ, 
we say that these two natures are united, not in such a manner that 
the human nature of Christ was conceived and formed in the womb 
of Mary, before the divine nature was united to it. For if, before 
the union, the humanity of Christ had erer by itself had a subsis 
tence, there would then be in Christ two persons also, just as there 
are two intelligent individual natures." The communication of 
person or subsistence, therefore, proceeds from the ^yoc. HOLL. 
(668) : "The communication of person is that by which the Son 
of God truly and actually conferred upon His assumed human 
nature, destitute of proper personality, His own divine person, for 
communion and participation, so that the same might reach a ter 
minus, be perfected in subsisting, and be established in a final 
hypostatic existence. 


[11] QUEN. (Ill, 83): "Of these two extremes (the divine and 
the human nature), one has the relation of an agent or of one per 
fecting, and the other the relation of one passive and able to be 
perfected. The former is the Son of God, or the simple person of 
the Myo?, or, what is the same thing, the divine nature determined 
by the person of the Aoyoc; the latter is the human nature. . . . 
The former extreme is the active principle of Trep^u/s//^-, which acts 
and perfects; the latter the passive principle of the same -f/ ,v<V/r, 
which is perfected or receives the perfections." K<;. ( l jr> ) : 
"jieptxupr/aic (immission, active intermingling) is that by which the 
divine nature of the *<$;% in perfecting, pervades inwardly and all 
around, so to speak, the human nature, and imparts to all of it its_ 
entire self, i. e. , in the totality and perfection of its essence, Col. 2: 
_9." Moreover its effect is, that the fulness of the Godhead dwells 
in the human nature, and both natures are, in the highest degree, 
present to each other. 

[12] GRH. (Ill, 412): "The state of the union is properly and 
specifically called union, hypostatic union, and is the most inti 
mate TTFpixupw<s, or unmixed and unconfused pervasion in one per 
son of two distinct natures, mutually present in the highest degree 
to each other, because of which one nature is not outside of the 
other, neither can it be without impairing the unity of the person. 
Such a distinction is made between the state and the act of the union, 
that the act is transient and the state is permanent; that the act is 
that of a simple person, i. e., of the Atyo?, who before His incarna 
tion was a simple person, upon a human nature, but the state 
exists between two natures, divine and human, in a complex per 
son; that the act consists in the assumption of humanity, made in 
the first moment of incarnation, but the state, in the most intimate 
and enduring cohesion of natures. 

QUEN. (Ill, 86): "The form of this personal union implies; 
(a) The participation or communion of one and the same person, 
1 Tim. 2: 5; (6) jthe intimate personal and constant mutual pres 
ence of the natures, John 1: 14; CoJ. 2: 9." 

[13] FORM. CONC. (Sol. Dec. VIII, 6): "Although the Son of 
Srod is Himself an entire and distinct person of the eternal God 
head, and therefore from eternity has been, with the Father and 
| the Holy Ghost, true, essential, and perfect God; yet that He 
assumed human nature into the unity of His person, not as though 
there resulted in Christ two persons, or two Christs, but that now 
Jesus Christ, in one person, is at the same time true eternal God, 
begotten of the Father from eternity, and true man." . . . 

CHMN. (de duab. nat., 25): "To the specific difference of the 


hypostatic union belongs the fact that these two natures are joined 
and united, in order to constitute one personality in the incarnate 
Christ, i. e., the nature inseparably assumed in the union became 
so peculiar to the person of the Word assuming it, that although 
there are and remain in Christ two natures, without change and 
mixture, with the distinction between the natures and essential 
attributes unimpaired, yet there are not two Christs, but only one 

Hence, since the act of union, Christ is called a complex person. 
GRH. (Ill, 427): "The hypostasis is called complex, not because 
it became composite, by suffering in and of itself an alteration and. 
loss of its simplicity, but because, since the incarnation, it is an 
hypostasis~oTtwo natures, while before it was an hypostasis of the 
divine nature alone. P.ct mv the iiieaniation the person of the 
";. " \vas self-determined and simple, sulisistini: only in the divine 
nature; by the incarnation the hypostasis became complex, consist 
ing, at the same time, of the divine and human nature, and thus 
iwt^only His divine, but also His assumed human nature, belongs to the 
entireness of tin fx/^on oj< /iri*t noir innirnntc. lleeause the hypos- 
tasis of the ^<tyof became an hypostasis of the flesh, therefore the 
hypostasis of the &$}<* was imparted to the flesh," and hence there 
follows the impartation of personality to the human nature. 

[14] HFRFFR. (263): These two natures in Christ are united 
( 1 ) inconvertible. For He became the Son of God, not by the 
change of His divine nature into flesh; (2) unconfusedly. For the 
two natures are one, not by a mingling, through which a third ob 
ject (tertium quiddam^) comes into being, preserving in no respect 
the entireness of the simple natures; (3) inseparably and uninter 
ruptedly. For the two natures in Christ are so united that they are 
never separated by any intervals, either of time or place. There; 
fore this union has not^beenjissolved in death, and the Uyo^ can 
not be shown at any place without the assumed human nature. 
For the Son of God took upon Himself human nature, not as a 
garment which He again would lay aside. Neither did the Son of 
God appear, as angels sometimes have appeared, in human form 
to men, but He made the assumed flesh His own, and since He 
has assumed it, never leaves it. For, according to the Counciljol 
Chalcedon; We confess one and the same Jesus Christ, the Son 
and Lord only-begotten^in two natures, without mirture, change, 

division, Or separation (ev M 

[15] GRH. (Ill, 428): "For neither has a part been united to 
a part, but the entire Uyof to the entire flesh, and the entire flesh 


to the entire Myof ; therefore, because of the identity of person and 
the pervasion of the natures by each other, J,he _Wyp? is so present 
to the flesh, and the flesh is so present to the Afoof, that neither 
the Ao/of is without the flesh7 nor the flesh without the A6yo^ _but 
wherever the Arfyof is, there He has the flesh present in the highest 
degree with Himself, because He has taken this into the unity of 
His person; and wherever the flesh is, there it has the A<jy<>f in the 
highest degree present to itself, because the flesh has been taken 
into His person. As the Myoq is not without the divine nature, to 
which the person belongs, so also is He not without His flesh, 
finite indeed in essence, yet personally subsisting in the Aoyf. For 
as, by eternal generation from the Father, His own divine nature 
is peculiar to the Adyoc, so through the personal union, flesh became 
peculiar to the same Myof." FORM. CONC., Sol. Dec., VIII, 11. 

[16] FORM. CONC. (Sol. Dec., VIII, 7): WeJadifiXfijfchat , now, 
in this undi\ddj3d_j>erson_of Christ, there are twQ_djstinct natures, 
ngme^thedivine^jwhich is from^ternity^and the human, which 
in timewas take nmto the unity of the person of the Son of God. 
And these two natures in the person of Christ are never either sep 
arated, or commingled, or changed the one into the other, but each 
remains in its nature and substance, or essence T in the person of 
Christ IxTall etermtyT We "believe . . . that as each nature in its 
nature Imd essence remains unmingled, and never ceases to exist, 
so each nature retains its natural essential properties, and to all 
eternity does not lay them aside." 

[17] GRH. (Ill, 422): The mode of this union is wonderfully 
unique and uniquely wonderful, transcending tli^compreEension 
not only of all men, but even of angels, whence it is called witH- 
out controversy, a great mysteryj There are various and diverse 
modes of union which arlTto be excluded from the mode of the 
personal union. For, as devout old writers say that it is better to 
know and be able to express what God is not, than what He is, so 
also of the divine and supernatural union of the two natures in 
Christ, we can truly affirm thatlt ls~easler to tell what is not, than 

\vli:il is its modi / 

From the Holy Scriptures, GRH. (ib.) justifies the above- 
mentioned presentation of this doctrine as follows: "The more 
prominent passages of Scripture which speak of the union of the 
two natures in Christ are: John 1: 14; Col. 2: 9; 1 Tirn, 3: 16; 
Heb. 2: 14-16. As these are all^parallel^ jh^yjmu^_bje_mnstaiitly 
connected irUl^^knatior^of the union,. John says: The Word 
hvas made flesh; but, lest any one might think that the Word was 
^made flesh in the same sense that the water was made wine, Paul 



says that God, i. e., the Son of God, was manifest in the flesh, 
;md that He took part of flesh and blood (<ceMv6v^ce). But no\\ 
communion is between at least two distinct things, otherwise it 
would be interchange and coalescence. God is said by the apostle 
to have been manifest in the flesh; but, lest any one might think 
that it was such a manifestation as there was in the Old Testament, 
when either God Himself or angels appeared in outward forms, , 
John says that the /.<5}of became flesh, i. e., that He so took flesh \ 
into His person as never aftenvards to lay it aside. The Son of \ 
God is said to have taken on Him the seed of Abraham; but, lest ( 
any one might think that it was an assumption such as that was I 
when angels for a time took upon them corporeal forms, it is said 
that, as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, He also 
Himself likeAvise took part of the same. But now it is evident 
that children partake of flesh and blood in such a manner that, by 
birth, flesh and blood, or human nature, is imparted to them by 
their parents. The apostle describes the union by the dwelling of 
the Aoyoc in assumed flesh; but, lest any one might think that the 
Son of God dwelt in assumed flesh in the manner in which God 
dwells, through grace, in the hearts of believers, he adds signifi 
cantly that all the fulness of the Godhead dwells in the assumed 
flesh, and that, too, bodily, to denote the dwelling-place, or per 
sonally, to express the mode of union." 

[18] The negative properties are enumerated very differently by 
the Dogmaticians. Besides those specified in the text, the most 
prominent are these: The union occurred, (a) OO^I TW^ un- 


nru^ inconvertibly ; 
inseparably; (g) j 



indissolubly ; 

uninterchangeably; (/) 
uninterruptedly." Or, Not 

by_reason of place (rom/cu?), as formerly in the temple at Jerusalem; 
not by reason of power (eve/r/7T<K?), as in creatures; not_by reason 
of grace (^a/M^truc), as in saints; not by reason of glory (dota^^), 
as in the blessed and the angels." 

33. Continuation. 

The hypostasis of the divine nature having thus, through 
the personal union, become at the same time that of the human 
nature, and thus no longer only a divine but a divine and 
human nature being now predicated of the person of the Re 
deemer, a real communion of both natures is thereby asserted, 
in consequence of which the two natures sustain no merely 
outward relation to each other ; for, as the hypostasis of the 


divine nature is not essentially different from this nature itself, 
and this hypostasis has imparted itself to the human nature, 
it therefore follows that there exists between the divine and 
human nature a true and real impartation and communion. 
[1] The first effect of the personal union is, therefore, the 
"communion (also communication) of natures." QUEN. (Ill, 
87): " The communion of natures is that most intimate partic 
ipation (noivuvia) > arid combination (aw6vaai$ of the divine nature 
of the /].<,< and of the assumed human nature, by which tlu> 
Afoof, through a most intimate and profound perichoresis, so 
permeates, perfects, inhabitg,__and_ appropriates^ Himself the 
human nature that is personally united to Him, that from 
both, mutually inter-communicating, there arises the one in- 
communicable subject, viz., one person." As, however, in the 
act of union, the divine nature is regarded as the active one, 
and the divine Uyo$ as that which assumed the human nature, 
so the intercommunion of the two natures must be so under 
stood as that, between the two natures, the active movement 
proceeds from the divine nature, and it is this that permeates 
the human. [2] It is, indeed, just as difficult for us to form 
an adequate conception of this as in the case of the personal 
union, and we must be satisfied with analogies, which furnish 
us with at least an approximate conception of it. Such we 
may find x e. g., in the union of soul and body ; in the relation 
in which the three jpersons of the Godhead stand towards each 
other ; or in the relation between iron and fire in red-hot iron. 
Just as the soul and body do not stand outwardly related to 
each other, as a man to the clothing that he has put on, or as 
an angel to the body in which he appears, but as the union 
between soul and body is a real, intimate and perfect one, so 
is also the union and communion of the two natures. As 
body and soul are inseparably united, and constitute the one 
man, so are also the human and divine natures most insepar 
ably united. As the soul acts upon the body and is united 
with it, without there being any mingling of the two, the soul 
remaining soul and the body remaining body, so are we also 
to regard the communion of the two natures in such a light, 
that each abides in its integrity. As, finally, the soul is never 
without the body, so also the Uyoq is to be regarded as always 
in the flesh and never without it. [3] 


If, now, there really exist such a communion of natures, it 

I. That the personal designations derived from the two 
tures must be mutually predicable of each other; that we 
must therefore just as well be able to say, " The man (Christ 
Jesus) is God," as " God is man ," which expressions, of course, 
do not signify that God, having become man, has ceased to be 
God, but rather, that the same Christ, who is God, is at the 
same time man (HoLL. (686) : " The Son of God, personally, 
is the same as the Son of man : and the Son of man, person 
ally, is the same as the Son of God "); whence the predicate 
" man " belongs just as much to the subject God as the predi 
cate " God " belongs to the subject man. [4] For, if we refuse 
to say this, we would betray the fact that we conceive, not of 
two natures in Christ, but rather of two persons, each remain 
ing a.sjt_originally was, which would be Nestorianism. 

From the communion of natures_aj^_therefore T deduced the 
j>< i-xnnal designations, i. e., statements in which the concrete 
of one nature (as united) is predicated of the concrete of the 
other nature ; i. e., the two essences really (d^tfwf) different, the 
divine and the human, are in the concrete reciprocally predi 
cated of one another, really and truly, yet in a manner very 
singular and unusual, in order to express the personal union. 
[5] To guard against a misunderstanding of these personal 
designations, it may be more particularly stated that they are 
(1) not merely verbal, i. e., they are not to be understood as if 
only the name, but not the nature thereby designated^ were 
predicated of the subject, as Nestorius does, when he says of 
the son of Mary, He was the Son of God, ascribing to the sub 
ject a title, as it were, but altogether refusing to acknowledge 
that He who was the son of Mary was also really the Son of 
God ; (2) not identical (when the same thing is predicated of 
itself); i. e., the predicates that are ascribed to thejiubject dare 
not be so explained as if they applied to if only in so far as the 
predicate precisely corresponds to the nature from which the 
designation of the subject is derived^ The proposition, "The 
Son of God is the son of Mary," dare not, therefore, be inter 
preted, " The man who is united with the Son of God is the 
son of Mary;" (3) not metaphorical, figurative, or tropical; as 


when, in the predicate thatjsapplied to a subject, not the es 
sential nature itself of the subject is ascribed to it,but only 
particular qualities of this predicate are appropriated to the 
subject^ so that it might be said, in a figurative sense, God is 
man, as we understand the expression when it is applied to a 
picture : " This is a man," " a woman ;" or, when it is said of 
Herod, " He is a fox ;" (4) not essential and univocal; as if the 
subigct, in its essential nature f were that which the predicate 
ascribes to it_(the expression, " God is man," would then mean, 
The nature of God is this, that it is the nature of man). The 
personal designations are rathej 

(1) Real ; i. e., that which is ascribed to the subject really 
and truly belongs to it. 

(2) Unusual and singular ; for, as there is no other example 
of the personal union, so there are no other examples of the 
personal designations. 

But from the communion of natures it follows also 
II. That there is a participation of the natures in the person 
as w r ciras of the natures with each other. fG"| This is set forth 
in the doctrine of the communicatio idiomatum. BR. (467) : 
" The communicatio idiomatum is tha.t_by which it comes to 
pass that those things which, when the two natures are com- 
parcd together, belong to one^f_them per se and formally, are 
to_be_truly predicated, also, of the other nature (either as re^ 
gards concretes, or for that which is peculiar to it.)" [7] Ac 
cording to this doctrine, therefore, it is neither possible to 
ascribe a quality to one of the two natures, which is not a 
quality of the whole person, nor is it possible to predicate an 
act or operation of one of the two natures, in which the other 
nature does not participate (not, however, in such a way as 
if along with the qualities or the acts proceeding from them, 
their underlying essence were transferred to the other nature). 
[8] There exists, therefore, a communicatio idiomatum between 
the natures and the person, and between the natures recipro 
cally. [9] The communicatio idiomatum is, therefore, of sev 
eral genera, of which we enumerate three (for so many are 
distinctly mentioned in the Scriptures), [10] the idiomatic, 
majcstatic, and apotclcxmatic. 



If the two natures are really united in one person, then 
every idioma (peculiarity) that originally belongs to one of the 
two natures must be predicated of the entire person; the idio 
mata (peculiarities) of the divine nature, as well as those of_the 
human nature, must belong to the person of the Redeemer. 
If, therefore, to be born or to suffer is an idioma of the human 
nature, then we must just as well be able to say, " Christ, the 
God-man, was born, suffered," as it is said of Him, "by Him 
were all things created," although creation is an idioma of the 
divine nature. [11] For, if we xvil^jiotjayjhis, but maintain 
that an idioma of the human nature can be predicated only 
of the concrete of the human nature, and an icfroma of the di 
vine nature only of the concrete of the divine (nature, so that 
we would say : The man, Jesus Christ, wiis born." "by 
Christ, who is God, all things were created ;" j^en the personal 
union would be set aside, and it would appear that two pe_r- 
sons and not two natures are recognized.. [12] But it is just 
in this that the personal union slums itself to be real, that all 
the idiomata which belong to the one or the other nature are 
equally idiomata of the person. As, further, in virtue of the 
communion of natures, and of the personal designations re 
sulting therefrom, it is all the same whether we designate 
Christ by both of His natures or only by one of them, a,n 
idioma of one of the two natures can be just as readily predi 
cated of the concrete of the one as of the other: \vr can. there 
fore, Just as well say, "God is dead," as, "the man, Jesus 
Christ, is Almighty." [13] 

While, however, the idiomata of the two natures are attri 
buted to the concrete of both natures (to Christ, the God-man) 
or to the concrete of one of the two natures (God the man, 
Christ Jesus), it by nojrneans follows^ from this that therefore 
the idiomat_a of_the_one nature become those of the other ; for 
the two natures are not in substance changed by the personal 
union, but each of them retains the idiomata essential and na 
tural to itself. Therefore it is only to the person that, without 
further distinctions, the idiomata of the one or of the other 
nature can be ascribed ; but this can in no wise happen be 
tween the natures themselves, in such a sense as though each 

f -4f c 



14 ^^ 

of them did not retain the idiomata essential to itself. [14] 
To avoid such a misunderstanding in statements of this kind, 
it is usual to designate particularly from which nature the 
y idiomata predicated of the person are derived. [15] 

(i<ini <il Itrjiiiifinii. Hoi. I.. (r> ( .);5): "Theiirst genus of com- 

municatio idiomutum is this, when such things as are peculiar 

H to the divine or to the human nature are truly and really as- 

^? cribed to the entire person of Christ, designated by either nature 

or by both natures." [16] This genus the later Dogmaticians 

divide into three species, according as the different idiomata 

are predicated of the concrete of the divine nature, or of the 

concrete of both natures. These species are "(a) 

propriation), or oiKeiuaif (indwelling), w r hen human idiomata are, 
ascribed to the concrete of the divine nature. Acts 3: 15 ; 20: 
28; 1 Cor. 2: 8; Gal. 2: 20. (b) noivuvia rw deiuv (participation of 
the divine), when the divine idiomata are predicated of the 
person of the incarnate Word, designated from His human 
nature. John 6: 62 ; 8: 58 ; 1 Cor. 15: 47, (c) avridootf or awa 
oor. ,,,r,/,,,, alternation, or reciprocation, in which as well the di 
vine as the human idiomata are predicated concerning the 
concrete of the person, or concerning Christ, designated from 
both natures. Heb. 13: 8; Rom. 9: 5; 2 Cor. 13: 4; 1 Pet. 3: 
18." (HoLL. 694J. 


As the divine M-yos has assumed human nature, so that by 
the personal union the hypostasis of the divine nature has be- * | 
come also that of the human nature, a further and natural S j ^ 
consequence of this is, that thereby the human nature hasvJ 4 
become partaker of the attributes of the divine_nature. and ^ > ^ 
v therefore of its entire glory and majesty: [17] for, by the per-^ } 
vS ^| sonal union, not only the person, but, since person and nature^ V W^ 
X^ ^ * cannot be separated, the divine nature also has entered into , 

communion with the human nature ; and the participation in I 
the divine attributes by the human nature occurs at the very , 
moment in which the Myos unites itself w T ith the human nature. \? 
[18] But there is no reciprocal effect produced ; for, while ^ V- 


the human nature can become partaker of the idiomata of theM 
divine, and thus acquire an addition to the idiomata essential 


to itself, the contrary cannot be maintained, because the di 
vine nature in its essence is unchangeable and can suffer no 
increase. [19] The attributes, finallyvwhich, by virtue of the 
personal union and of the communion of natures, are commu_- 
nicated to the human nature, are truly divine, and are there 
fore to be distinguished from the special human excellences 
possessed by the human nature which the Uyo$ assumed, over 
and above those of other human natures. [20]. 

Definition^ (HOLL. 699): " The second genus of communi; 
catio idiomatum is that by which the Son of God truly and 
really communicates the idiom ata of His own divine nature 
to tlio assumed human nature, in consequence of the personal 
union, for common possession, use, and designation/ [21] 


The whole design of the incarnation of Christ is none other 
than that the a<5>-of, united with the human nature, may accom 
plish the work of redemption. From the communion of the 
two natures, resulting from the personal union, it follows that 
none of the influences proceeding from Christ can be attributed 
to one only of the two natures. [22] The influence may, in 
deed, proceed from one of the two natures, and each of the two 
natures exerts the influence peculiar to itself, but in such a 
way that, wjiile such an influence is being exerteol on the part 
of one of the natures, the other is not idle, but at the same 
time active ; that^therefore, while the humanjiature suffers, 
the divine, which indeed cannot also suffer, yet in so far par 
ticipates in the suffering of the human nature that it wills this 
suffering, permits it, stands by the human nature in its suffer- 
ingjjand strengthens and supports it for enduring the imposed 
burden ; [23] further, that the human nature is to be regarded 
as active, not alone by means of the attributes essentially its 
own, but that to these are added, by virtue of the second genus 
of the communicatio idiomatuinjjhe divine attributes imparted 
to it. with which it operates. [2-1] For the divine nature 
could not of itself, alone, have offered a ransom for the redemp 
tion of the world ; to do this it had to be united with the 
human nature, which, consisting of soul and body, could be 
offered up for the salvation of men. _Again ? the human nature 


could not have accomplished many of the deeds performed 
(miracles, etc.), had not its attributes been increased by the 
addition of the divine. [25] 

Definition. GRH. Ill, 555): " The third genus of the com- 
municatio idiomatum is that by which, in official acts, each 
nature performs what is peculiar to itself, with the participa 
tion of the other. 1 Cor. 15: 3; Gal. 1: 4; Eph. 5: 2." [26] 

If we now contemplate the entire doctrine of the Person of 
Christ, its supreme importance at once becomes manifest. Only 
because in Christ the divine and human natures were joined 
together in one person, could He accomplish the work of re^ 
demption. [27] 

In order clearly to exhibit this truth, it has been necessary 
for us to develop the present doctrine at such length. [28] 

[1] QUEN. (Ill, 87) : " If the hypostasis of the Myof has been truly 
and really imparted to the assumed flesh, undoubtedly there js a 
true and real participation between the divine and the human 
nature^ since the hypostasis of the aoyo? and the divine nature of the 
M-yof do not really differ. But as the former is true, so also must 
be the latter." FORM. Coxc. (Sol. Dec., VIII, 14): "But we 
must not regard this hypostatic union as though the two natures, 
divine and human, are united in the manner in which two pieces 
of wood are glued together, so as really, or actually and truly, to 
have no participation whatever with each other. For this is the 
error and heresy of Nestorius and Paul of Samosata, who thought 
and taught heretical ly that the two natures are altogether separate 
or apart from one another, and are incapable of any participation 
whatever. By this false dogma, the natures are separated, and two 
Christs are invented, one of whom is Christ, but the other God, the 

oc, dwelling in Christ." 

QI-EN. (Ill, 143): "The antithesis of the Calvinists, some of 
whom teach that it is only the person of the ?<ty% and not, at the 
same time, His divine nature that has been united to human nature, 
unless by way of consequence and accompaniment, because of its 
identity with personality, which alone was at first united. Thus 
they invent a double union, mediate and immediate; that the 
natures are united, not immediately, but through the medium of 
the person of the A<tyof. 

[2] HOLL. (680): " The communion of natures in the person of 
Christ is the mutual participation of the divine and human natures 
of Christ, through which the divine nature of the A^yoy. having be- 


come participant of the human nature, pervades, perfects, inhabits, 
and appropriates thisjo itself; but the human, having become par 
ticipant of the divine nature, is pervaded, jperf ected, and inhabited 

BR. (463): "From the personal union proceeds the participation 
of natures, through which it comes to pass that the human naturo 
belongs to the Son of God, and the divine nature to the Son of man. 
For marking this, the-word ^p^w/M/m?, which, according to its orig- 
inal meaning, denotes penetration, or the existence of one thing in 
another, began to be employed, go that the divine nature might indeed 
be said actively to pendwte._smd the human nature passively to be 
penetrated. Yet this must be understood in such a manner as to 
remove all imperfection. For the divine nature does not penetrate 
the human go as to occwpyj^essively one part of it after another^ and 
to diffuse itself extensively through it ; but, because it is spiritual and 
indivisible as a whole, it energizes and perfects gt the name time every 
part of the human nature and the entire nature, and is and remain* 
entire in the entire human nature, and entire in every part of it. Here 
belongs the passage, Col. 2: 9. 

HOLL. (681): nepixumats is not indeed a biblical term; neyej;- 
theless it is jnLgg^Jesiastical term, and began especially to be em 
ployed when Nestorius denied the communion of natures. But 
they did not understand jrfp^wp^o/? as local and quantitative, as an 
urn is said to contain (*"pm ) water, but as illocal and metaphori 
cally used." 

[3] FORM. Coxc. (Sol. Dec., VIII, 18, 19): " Learned antiquity 
has indeed declared this personal union and communion of natures 
by the similitude of the soul and body, and likewise, in another 
manner, by that of glowing iron. For the soul and body (and so 
also fire and iron) have a participation with each other, not merely 
nominally or verbally, but truly and really; yet in such a manner 
that no mingling_or equalizing of the natures is introduced, as when 
honey- water is made of honey and water, for such drink is no longer 
either pure water or pure honey, but a drink composed of both. 
Far otherwise is it in the union of the divine and human natures 
in the person of Christ, for the union and participation of the divine 
and human natures in the person of Christ is far more exalted, and 
is altogether inexpressible. 

HOLL. (681 ): " Thejathers have seen fit to describe the personal 
from the essential vepixuprioiq of the persons of the Holy 

Trinity; (b) frorn_the natural mpix&piev of body and soul; (c) from 
the accidental ^pix^p^ of fire and iron. For, as one person of the 
Trinity is in alnoTh^rT^sThe soul pervades the body, as fire pene- 


trates all the pores of iron, so the divinity of Christ is in the 
humanity, which it completely fills and pervades. From this it is 
easy to infer that inpixuptjaif denotes ( 1 ) that the personal union is 
an inner one and most complete. A union is outward and incom 
plete when an angel assumes a body, a pilot stands by a ship, a 
garment hangs on a man. The teachers of the Church, to separate 
from it the idea of such an outward union, were in the habit of 
calling the union a personal union, and the communion proceeding 
from it Kpixt>prioi{. For, as the soul does not outwardly stand by . 
the body, nor merely direct its movement, but enters, moves into, 
and fashions it, by imparting to the body its own essence, life, and 
faculties; so the Myos enters the flesh, and inwardly communicates 
to it its own divine nature. (2) That the communion of natures 
is_mutual, yet in such a manner that the divine nature, as actual 
being (wre^tm), i. e., as a most absolute act, permeates and per 
fects the assumed human nature, and the assumed flesh is perme 
ated and perfected. (3) That the personal union and communion 
ofjiatures in_Christ_is inseparable ^O^UTTOV) The rational soul so 
enters the body that it could in no way have been separated from 
it, if, by the divine judgment, the violence of death had not fol 
lowed from the Fall accidentally intervening. It is true that the 
natural union of soul and body was dissolved during the three days 
of Christ s death; but the divine nature of the Atyo? was not sepa 
rated from the assumed humanity, but was, in the highest degree, 
present to it. (4) That the natural union and communion is with- 

OUt mingling, mixture, Or change (dairy xvrov, d/^/crw, /cat drpcTrrov). As 

the persons of the Trinity permeate each other without mixture; as 
the soul fashions the body without any disturbance, mingling, or 
change of either; so the Myoc pervades His own flesh in such manner 
that in essentials there is in no respect a giving way by either, and 
neither is mingled or mixed with the other. (5) That the natures 
of Christ have been united continuously (dtiac-drov^ , or are mu 
tually present to each other. The persons of the Trinity enter each 
other so mutually that neither is outside of nor beyond the other. 
In like manner the rational soul is in the body so as never to be 
outside of or beyond it; the Arfyof also is in the flesh, so as never to 
be beyond, and never to be outside of it. 

[4] GKH. (Ill, 453): "The source and foundation of the per 
sonal designations consist solely and alone in the personal union 
and participation of natures, from which they alone and immedi 
ately proceed, from which alone, also, they are to be judged and 
explained. For God is man, and man is Go(l,J)eeause the human 
and divine natures in Christ are pejspnaUy united^_and because an 


~~^ (fioS , x^Wf 


Inner irepixuprjaic exists between these two natures personally united, 
so that the divine nature of the M-yof does not subsist outside of the I 
assumed human nature, and the assumed human nature does not o | 
subsist outside of the divine. God is and is called man, because V* 
the hypostasis of the *<$yf is the hypostasis not only of His divine, | j 
but also of His human nature." 

Scriptural examples: Jer. 23: 5, 6; 33: 16; Matt 22: 42-45; > 
Luke 20: 44; Ps. 110: 1; 2 Sam. 7: 19; Is. 9: 6; Matt. 1: 21-23; 1 { 
16: 13, 16; Luke 1: 35; 2: 11; 1 Cor. 15: 47. 

[5] a. The expression concrete was employed when a personal v 
designation was sought for Christmas one who is of two natures. 5 
If the personal designation was derived from one of His two $ 
natures, the same was called the concrete of that nature ; and, there- ^ i 

^ fore, since Christ is of two natures, the concrete of the divine nature, , \ 
when the designation was derived from the divine nature; the con- 

^\ crete of the human nature, when the designation was derived from 
the human nature. To the former class belong the designations, 

v: ( God, " " Son of God, etc. ; to the latter, man, " Son of man, " J * 
I "Son of Mary." HOLL. (685): "The concrete of a nature is a * 

term whereby the nature is expressed with a connotation of the 
K hypostasis." BB. (465): " Bv the concrete, a term is understood 

^y ^ ""* * x * * . 2 __ - 

which, injbhe_direct sense, denotes a suppositum, but in an indi- 
S\ rect sense a nature. Thus God denotes a suppositum, having a 
I ^ divine nature; man denotes a suppositum, having a human nature. | j 

Still, a distinction must be made between the concrete of the nature, * 
^and the concrete of the person; the latter expression is employed^! ^ 

: where the personal designation has not been derived so much from 
^ ^ one of the two natures, as where it rather serves to designate, 
v ^. through an expression elsewhere derived, the particular person in 
whom the two natures are united as one person." BR. (466): 
ry" The concrete of a person is such a term or name, as formally $ ^ 
v signifies the person confliffting of both natures, e. g., Christ, Mes- J ; 
\Jsiah, Immanuel;~wTiich~names, in the nominative case, denote,* ^ N 
,5 the suppositium,and, in an oblique case, neither nature alone, but ^<^ 
\rather both." In the present case, only the concrete of the nature*** 
> into use; for the question is only in reference to the cases \ 
; in which the communion of natures shall also express itself in their i"x 
personal designations. To personal designations, in the proper ^ 
sense, such designations do not belong, in which a concrete of the < > 
nature is predicated of a concrete of the person, as occurs in the ^ 
sentences: Christ is God, is man, is God-man. GRH. (Ill, 453) :\x 

4 For these designations accurately and formally express, not so 



much the unity of person, as the duality of natures in Christ; for 

c+^i~~*.- tfrtStJ* d*****2f* 4r&*t/ t ? l*s1*i+4 yW-L -a /^ /* c23^ -K*y i^~~& + 



Christ is and is called man, because in Him there is a human 
nature; and He is and is called God, because in Him there is a 
divine nature; and He is and is called the God-man, because in 
Him there is not only a human, but also a divine nature. 

It is furthermore self-evident that these designations can be em 
ployed only upon the presupposition of the personal union, and 
that they are not universally applicable. Hence, HOLL. (685): 
" If the divine and human natures, or man and God, be regarded 
outside of the personal union, they are disparate, neither can the 
one be affirmed of the other. For as I cannot say: a lion is a 
horse, so also I cannot say: God is man. But if a union exists 
between God and man, and that too a real union, such as exists in 
Christ, between the divine and human natures, they can be cor^ 
rectly predicated of each other in the concrete. The reason is, 
because, through the union, the two natures constitute one person, 
and every concrete of the nature denotes the person itself. Since, 
therefore, Christ the man is the same person who is God, or thia 
person who is God is that very person who is man, it is also said 
correctly: man is God, and God is man." 

b. To the abstracts of nature ( an abstract is that by which a 
nature is considered, yet not with respect to itsunipn, but in itself, 
and withdrawn from its union or the concrete, nevertheless not 
actually, but only in the mind." HFRFFR. (283)) the like does 
not apply, as to the concretes of nature; therefore it cannot be said 
that deity is humanity, and humanity is deity. QUEN. (Ill, 88): 
~ The reason is, because the union was not made to one nature, 
but to one complex person, Avith the difference of natures unim 
paired, and therefore, one nature in the abstract is not predicated 
of the other, but the concrete of one nature is predicated of the 
concrete of the other nature. 

[6] GRH. (Ill, 466): "Whatever in the assumption of human 
nature comes under the union, that also comes under the participa 
tion. But now the properties come under the union, because no 
nature is destitute of its own properties, since a nature without 
properties is also without existence, and the two natures are united 
in Christ, not as alone, or stripped of their properties, but entire, 
without incompleteness, having suffered no loss of peculiarities. 
Therefore, the properties^ also come under the participation." 

HOLL. (691): "No union can be perfect and permeant (peri- 
choristic) without a participation of properties, as the examples of 
animated body show. We readily grant that a parastatic (adja 
cent) union of two pieces of wood may occur without a participa 
tion of properties, because that grade of union is low and imperfect. 


But, according to the definition of Scripture, the personal union of 
the two natures in Christ is most absolute, perfect and permeant 
(perichoristic); therefore it cannot be without a participation of 
properties." In like manner, proof can be produced from the 
communion of natures, which, just as the union, has the participa 
tion of properties (commun. idiom. ) as a necessary consequence. 

[7] HOLL. (690): "The communicatio idiomatum is a true and 
real participation of the properties of the divine and human 
natures, resulting from the personal union in Christ, the God-man, 
who is denominated from either or both natures. -- 


() GKH. (Ill, fiSojr^Cwnmunicatio (communication) is the 
distribution of one thing which is common to many, to the many 
which have it in common. QUEN. (Ill, 91): u Not that the 
properties become common, M^ara wiva, but that through and be 
cause of the personal union they become communicable (KOIVUVIJTO) ." 

(6) idiufia, woyrhtm. property. QUEN. (Ill, 92): "By I<fafymra 
are understood the properties and differences of natures, by which. 
ag_by certain marks and characteristics, the two natures (in unity 
of_j>erson) are mutually distinguished and known apart. The 
term Idiufiara is received either in a narrow sense, for~the natural prop 
erties themselves, or in a wide sense, so that it comprehends the oper 
ations also, through which these properties properly so called exert 
themselves; in this place, properties or idiomata are received in a 
wider sense, so that, in addition to the properties strictly so called, 
they embrace within their compass actions and results, fvep-yr/ftara *< 
dTTore^ff/iara, because properties exert themselves through operations 
and results." GRH. (Ill, 466): "Observe, that the notion of the 
divine properties is_one__thmg and that of the human properties 
another. The properties of the divine nature belong to the very 
essence of the ^yof, and are not really distinguished from it. The 
properties of the human nature do not constitute but proceed 
from the essence." In regard to Uie._aiiiJiQrityJor this doctrine. 

HOLL. (690): "The expression, communicatio idiomatum, is not 
found in the Holy Scriptures word for word, yet the matter itself 
has the firmest scriptural foundation. For as often as Scripture 
attributes to the flesh of Christ actions and works of divine omnip 
otence, so often, by consequence, is omnipotence ascribed, as an 
immediate act, to Him, from whom the divine operation (Ivtpyeta) 
proceeds, as a mediate act, But, although the communicatio idio 
matum was first so named by the Scholastics, yet orthodox antiquity 
employed equivalent forms of speech in the controversies with 
Nestorius and Eutyches." The first complete elaboration of thid 


( doctrine among the Dogmaticians is given by Chemnitz, in his 

}book, De Duabus Naturis in Christo, 1580. 

[8] Therefore the more specific caution with regard to the com 
municatio, according to which it is said that it is not a ^communi 
catio Kara fuOEJ-tv, or according to the essence, by which one passes 
into the essence and within the definition of the other; but a com- 
municatio Kara awdvaoiv (not essential or accidental, but) personal, 
i._ e. f a participation of the two natures, whereby one of those 
united is so connected with the other that, the essence remaining 
distinct, the one, without any mingling, truly receives and par 
takes of the peculiar nature, power, and efficacy of the other, 
through and because of the communion that has occurred." 
(QuEN., Ill, 102.) So, also, still more extended definitions have 
been given, just as of the personal union. GRH. (Ill, 466): "As 
the union is not essential, nor merely verbal, neither through 
mingling, or change, or mixture, or adjacence, neither is it j>er- 
sonal or sacramental; so also the communicatio is not such. 

[9] GRH. (Ill, 465): The communicatw idiomatum is of a 
nature to a person, or of a nature to a nature. 
~HFRFFR. (286)T Tr The communicatio idwrnaium is a true and real 
participation of divine"and human properties, by which, because 
of the hypostatic union of the two natures in Christ, not only thg 
idiomata of both natures^ the person (who is at the same time God 
and man), but also the properties ^ o 

to the other, i. e., the human nature to the Wyof, and the divine 
nature to the assumed man. And because of the same com 
munion, each nature works with a communication of the other, 
yet with their natures and properties preserved unimpaired." 

QUEN. (Ill, 155): "the antithesis of the Calvinists, whojT) 
state that the communicatio idiomatum is indeed real with respecttp 

the person, designated by Deity or humanity, J>ut^ that with re- 
spjectjo natures it is only verbal, i. e. , that it is a communicatio of 
words and terms and not of properties. (2) They say that those 
are only verbal designations when human tilings are declared of 
God, or divine tilings of man/ 

[10] QUEN. (Ill, 92): "Definite and distinct degrees of the 
commimicatio idiomatum are given; but, inasmuch as the question 
of the number of degrees or genera of the communicatio idiomatum 
does not pertain to faith and its nature, but to the method of 
teaching, some define two, others three, and others four genera of 
properties. Yet the number three pleases most of our theologians, 
inasmuch as in the holy volume this is discussed according to a 
threefold method of expression. I say that Holy Scripture dis- 


tinctly presents three genera, although it does not enumerate 
themj A few Dogmaticians assume four genera of communicatio 
idiomatum, since they distinguish the declarations in which the 
properties of the human nature are ascribed to the Son of God, 
from the declarations in which the properties of one of the two 
natures are affirmed in reference to the entire person of Christ; 
and, therefore, the proposition, "Christ suffered," they assign to 
a different genus from the proposition, " God suffered." Still, 
the most of the Dogmaticians express themselves against this 
classification. But the order also in which the three genera are 
given, is not the same in all the Dogmaticians. 

QtEN. (ib. ) : "Some follow the order of doctrine ; others the order 
of nature. The former (Form. Cone., Chmn., Aegid. Hunn. ) place 
the communkation of the official actions, since this is more easily 
explained and fees controverted, before the communication of 
majesty, which is especially controverted and must be explained 
more fully. Ths latter follow the order of nature, and place the 
communication of majesty before the communication of the official 
actions, because the former by nature precedes the latter. 

[11] GRH. (Ill, 472): "The foundation of this communicatio 
idiomatum is unity of pergoj). For, inasmuch as, since the incar 
nation, ths one person of Christ subsists in two and of two natures, 
each of which has been clothed, as it were, with its own proper 
ties, the properties of both natures, the divine as well as the 
human, are affirmed of the one complex (owtferu) person of Christ." 
FORM CONC. (Sol. Dec., VIII, 36): "Since there are in Christ 
two distinct natures, which in their essences and properties are 
neither changed nor mixed, and yet the two natures are but one 
person, those properties which belong only to one nature are 
not ascribed to it, apart from the other nature, asjf separated, but 
to the entire person (which at the same time is God and man), 
whether He be called God or man." 

CIIMN. (ilc <lu;ili. n;it.. r,7): " Xrstorius tnuirlit BUCfa ;i 
participation as to ascribe divine properties to Christ only as God, 
and human properties to Christ only as man; such as that man, 
not God, was born of Mary, was crucified, etc. Likewise, that 
God, not man, healed the sick and brought to life the dead. But 
thus, Christ as God would be one person, and Christ as man would 
be another, and there would be two persons and two Christs. 

[13] CHMN. (de duab. nat., 69): " In order to show this most 
complete unity of the person, those things jvyhich. _are .properties^ 
whether of the divine, or human^ or both natures, are ascribed to 
the one hvpostasis, or are designated by the concrete derived from 


the divine, or from Jhe human, or from both natures. " (Id., 68): 
Because the union of natures occurred in the hypostasis of the 
Word, so that there is now one and the same person of both 
natures subsisting at the same time in both natures, when the 
concrete terms derived from the divine nature, as God the Afyoc , 
the Son of God, are predicated of the incarnate Christ, although 
the designation is derived from the divine nature, yet they signify 
not only the divine nature, but a person now subsisting in two 
natures, divine and human. And when the concrete terms de 
rived from the human nature, as man and Son of man, are predi 
cated of the incarnate Christ, they designate not a merely human 
nature, or a human nature alone, but an hypostasis, subsisting 
both in the divine and human natures, or which consists, at the 
same time, of both a divine and a human nature, and to which 
both natures belong. Hence it occurs that all the properties are 
correctly ascrihed to concrete terms, denoting the person of Christ. 
whether named from both or only from one _pf_the two natures. " 
~[14] CHMN. (de duab. nat., 67): "But it" (i. e.~ true faifh) 
"does not, with Eutyches and the Monotheletes, confound that 
communication between the natures with a change and mixture 
both of natures and properties, so that humanity is said to be 
divinity, or the essential property of one nature becomes the sub 
stantial property of the other nature, considered in the abstract, 
whether, on the one hand, beyond the union or in itself, or, on the 
other, by itself in the union. But a property belonging to one 
nature is imparted or ascribed to the person in the concrete." 
Hence HOLL. (696): "(1) The subject is not the abstract, but the 
concrete, of the nature or person. " (It cannot, therefore, be said 
that Deity was crucified. ) "(2) The j>m//Va/r " (namely, that 
which is affirmed of the subject, /. c., of the incarnate (complex) 
person) "does not mark a divine or human substance itselfj^bu^^ 
property of one of the two natures." GRH. (Ill, 485): "In this 
genus, are the abstract expressions to be employed, Deity suffered, 
Divinity died? He adds, "that they have indeed been em 
ployed by some with the limitation, Divinity suffered in the 
Mesh; " but is of the opinion " that it would be better to abstain 
from this mode of expression;" and he proves this "(1) From the 
silence of Scripture. (2) From the nature of Deity. Deity is 
incapable of suffering, or of change, and interchange; therefore, 
suffering cannot be ascribed to it. Deity pertains to the entire 
Trinity; . . . but if, therefore, Deity in itself were said to have 
suffered, the entire Trinity would have suffered, and the error 
of the Sabellians and Patripassians would be reproduced in the 



/T^ri*- V*~~. 

Church. ... (3) From the condition of the union. Through the 
union, the distinction of natures has not been removed, but the 
hypostasis of the *o?o? became the hypostasis of the flesh, so as to 
constitute one complex person; therefore, something can be predi 
cated of the entire person, according to the human nature, and yet 
it by no means follows that the same should be ascribed to the 
divine nature. As works and sufferings belong to the person, and not 
to the nature, I am correct in saying, God suffered in the flesh; 
but I cannot say, the divinity of the Myoc suffered in the flesh. 

[15] FORM. CONC. (Sol. Dec., VIII, 37): "But in this class of 
expressions it does not follow that those things which are ascribed 
to the whole person are, at the same time, properties of both na 
tures, but it is to be distinctly declared according to which nature 
Anything is ascribed to the entire person." 

CHMN. (de duab. nat., 63): "Yet, lest the natures may be 
thought to be mingled, from the example of Scripture there is gen 
erally added a declaration to which nature a property belongs that 
is ascribed to the person, or, according to which nature of the per 
son it is ascribed. For the properties of one nature do not hinder 
the presence also of the other nature with its properties. Nor do 
they hinder the properties of one nature from being ascribed to the 
person subsisting in both natures. Nor is it necessary that what, 
in this genus, is predicated of the person should be applicable to 
both natures. But it is sufficient that it pertain to the person 
according to one or the other nature, whether the divine or the 
human. QUEN T . (Ill, 94): "Particles used for this purpose are 
fv, ff, dm, ard, 1 PeJ,. 2: 24; 3,: 18; 4_: 1; Rom. 1:3; 9.: 5; Acts 20: 
28. By this additional more specific statement, it is furthermore 
shown how the predicate, applied to the subject, properly belongs 
only to one of the two natures, although, by virtue of the union of 
persons, it belongs also to both natures. (HoLL. (696): "The 
mode of expression is true and peculiar by which divine or human 
properties are declared to belong to the entire theanthropic person 
(for the properties of humanity, because of the personal union, are 
truly and properly predicated of the Son of God, and vice versa), 
yet in such a way that, by means of discretive particles, they are 
claimed for the nature to which they formally belong, while they 
are appropriated by the other nature to which they belong, not 
formally, but because of the personal union. ) The mode of ex 
pression is illustrated by the following examples. (HoLL. (697): 
" The Son of God was born of the seed of David, according to the 
flesh, Rom. 1:3. The subject of this idiomatic, proposition is thje 
Son of <li>d, by which the entire person of Christ, designated from 
_ - 


the divine nature 3 is denoted. The predicate is, that He was born 
ofthe seed of David, which is a human property This is predi 
cated of the concrete of the divine nature, to which it does not by 
itself belong, but through something else, because of the unity of 
the theanthropic person; whence, by the restrictive particle, ra, 
according to the flesh, the human property of the human nature 
is asserted, to which a birth in time formally applies; yet the divine 
nature is not excluded or separated from participation in the nativ 
ity, inasmuch as the being born of the seed of David belongs to it 
by way of appropriation.") The proposition, "God suffered," is 
thus explained: "The Son of God suffered according to His human 
nature subsisting in the divine personality. As, therefore, when a 
wound is inflicted upon the flesh of Peter, not alone the flesh of 
Peter is said to have been wounded, but Peter, or the person of 
Peter, has been truly wounded, although his soul cannot be 
Avounded; so, when the Son of God suffers, according to the flesh, 
the flesh or His human nature does not suffer alone, but the Son 
of God, or the person of the Son of God, truly suffers, although the 
divine nature is impassible." (Id., 698): "The sentence, God 
has suffered, is not then to be explained away with Zwingli into 
The man, Jesus Christ, who at the same time is God, has suf 
fered, in which case the mode of expression would be no real 
and peculiar one." FORM. CONG. (Sol. Dec., VIII, 39): VZwingli 
names it an att&osis when anything is ascribed to the divine 
nature pf Christ, which, nevertheless, is a property of the human 
nature, ami the reverse. For example, where it is said in Serip- 
tuiv. LirkelM: i>s, Oii- ht not Christ to have suffered these things, 
and to enter into His glory ? there Zwingli triflingly declares that 
the term Christ, in this passage, refers to His human nature. Be 
ware! beware! I aq,y of tha.^ fiJLv.nfri.8 : ... for if I permit myself 
to be persuaded to believe that the human nature alone suffered for 
me, Christ will not be to me a Saviour of great worth, but He 
Himself stands in need of a Saviour." . . . QUEN. (Ill, 155): 
"They" (the Calvinists) "explain the designations of the first 
genus of communicatio idiomatum either with Zwingli by alleeosis, by 
which they state that the name of the person, or of one of the two 
natures, is put in the place of the subject only for the other nature 
which is expressed in the predicate; or with Piscator by synecdoche, 
of a part for the whole, i. e. , that while the entire is put in the 
place of the subject, yet that it is in such a manner that the passion 
is restricted and limited to only a part of it, i. e., to the flesh alone. 
For example, they explain the proposition, God suffered, in this 
way: Man alone, although united to God, suffered. 1 

. f - 

#~rzttV T**~S~ ttf t-t c C\^^-< 

7 . e) ^-_ A-^.^-^ -&^~r **tx- <? &&+^ 


[16] As appellations of this first ^enus the following were 
quoted, and their origin traced back to the old Church Fathersj 

avn docK? alternation, rp6irof avri66aeuf (Damascenus), ivaWMyt] /cat Kocvuvia 

exchange and participation of names (Theodoret), idioKoua 

appropriation (Cyril), q/lokwc (but used in a different 

sense from that of Zwingli), oJKEiuaif, awan^orepiafioi;. Examples from 
Holy Scripture: Heb. 13: 8; 1 Cor. 2: 8; Acts 7: 55; Ps. 24: 7, 8; 
Acts 3: 15; John 8: 58. 

[17] GRH. (Ill, 499): "That which is communicated, the holy 
matter of communication, is the divine majesty, glory, and power, 
and on this account gifts truly infinite and divine." 

QUEN. (Ill, 102): "The foundation of this communication is 
the communication of the hypostasis, and of the divine nature of 
the /-o;of. For, inasmuch as the human nature was taken into the 
union^and through the union became a partaker of the person and 
divine nature of the Aoyoc, it became truly and really a partaker ^f 
the divine properties; for These really do not differ from the divine 

CHMN. (de duab. nat., 97): u If the dwelling of God in the 
saints by grace confers, in addition to and beyond natural endow 
ments, many free divine gifts, and works many wonders in them, 
what impiety is it to be willing to acknowledge in that mass of 
human nature, in which the whole fulness of the Godhead dwells 
bodily, only physical endowments, and to be willing to believe 
of that nothing which surpasses and exceeds the natural condi L 
lions of human nature considered by or in itself^ outside of the 
hypostatic union.?" 

^QUEN. (Ill, 158) concerning the nature of the mode: We deny 
that this communication is merely verbal and nominal, as the Re 
formed contend" (p. 160, "who altogether deny this second 
genus of communicatio idiomatum. The propositions: The flesh of 
Christ quickens, the Son of man is omnipotent, the Zwinglians 
explain by allseom thus: The Son of God who assumed flesh, 
quickens, etc."); " b^t we maintain that it is true, peculiar, and 
real. Yet we do not say that there_is_any transfusion of divine 
properties into the human nature of Christ (whereby the reproach 
of Eutychianism is repelled), or that there is any change of the 
human nature into the divine, or that there is an equalization or 
abolition of natures, but that there is a personal eonmmnieatioii." 
[18] QUEN. 1(111, 101): "For the communication of majesty 
occurred in that very moment in which the personal union qc_- 
curred. For, from the very beginning of incarnation, the divine 
nature, with its entire fulness, united and communicated itself to 

> As 



the assumed flesh." With reference to the subsequent doctrine of 
the states of Christ, QUEN. however still adds: * We must here dis 
tinguish between the communication, with reference to^possessipir, 
and the communication, with reference jto use._ So far as possession 
and the first act are concerned, the divine properties were commu 
nicated to the human nature at one and the same time with the very 
moment or the very act of the union, and new ones have not been 
superadded. And although the second act, and the full use of the 
imparted majesty, were withheld during the state of humiliation, 
yet rays of omnipotence, omniscience, etc. , frequently appeared, as 
often as seemed good to divine wisdom. But the full exercise of this 
majesty begun not until His exaltation to the right hand of (iod." 

[19] QUEN. (Ill, 159): (< Reciprocation, which has a place in 
the first genus, does not occurnTthis genus; for there cannot be_a 
humiliation, emptying or lessening of the divine nature ( 
Hivuait, f/arro><T/r),_as there is an advancement or exaltation 
or vnepv^uaif ) of human nature. The divine nature is unchange 
able, and, therefore, cannot be perfected or diminished, exalted or 
depressed. The object of the reciprocation is a nature in want of 
and liable to a change, and such the divine nature is not. The 
promotion belongs to the nature that is assumed, not to the one 
that assumes it. ^ The ground on which only the properties of trie 
divine nature are communicated to the human, and not the reverse, 
arises from the mode of the act of union. BR. (472) : " It amounts 
to this, that, as on the part of the nature, although the divine is 
personally united to the human, and the human to the divine, yet 
this distinction intervenes, that the divine nature inwardly pene 
trates and perfects the human, but the human does not in turn 
penetrate and perfect the divine, but is penetrated and perfected by 
it; so in the communicatio idiomatitm, this distinction intervenes, 
that^ the divine nature, penetrating the human, also makes the 
same, abstractly considered, in its own way, partaker of its divine 
perfections; but not so in turn the human nature, which neither 
permeates nor perfects the divine nature, and does not and cannot 
in a like manner render this, abstractly considered, the partaker of 
its own properties." 

[20] GRH. (Ill, 499): "We do not deny that, in addition to the 
essential properties of human nature, certain gifts pertaining to this 
condition inhere subjectively in Christ as a man, which, although 
they surpass, by a great distance, the most excellent gifts of all 
men and angels, yet are and remain finite; but we add, that, in 
addition to these gifts which pertain to the condition and are finite^ 
gifts truly infinite and immeasurable, have been imparted to Christ the 


man. through the personal union, and His exaltation to the right 
hand of the Father." HOLL. (702): "Through and because of 
the personal union, there have been given to Christ, according to 
His human nature, gifts that are truly divine, uncreated, infinity 
and immeasurable." And, although it may be said in general 
all the divine attributes have been imparted to the flesh of 
Christ, still a distinction should be made between attributes 

avKvipyrjTa and ivtp^TiTiKa. " 

As is well known, the doctrine of the communicatio idiomatum 
forms a main point of difference between the Lutheran and the 
Reformed Churches. But of most significance is the difference 
concerning this second genus of properties, since the doctrine set 
forth under this head is decisive in regard to the doctrine of the 
Lord s Supper; for here the discussion has special reference to the 
attribute of omnipresence. We give, therefore, in this place, first, 
a summary of the difference between the two churches, and then 
a more specific statement of the doctrine of omnipresence. COTTA 
(in GRH., Loci, IV, Diss., I, 50), in the first place, groups to 
gether the points in reference to the doctrine of the person of 
Christ, on which both sides generally agree. "They agree 
that in Christ there is only one person, but two natures, namely, 
a divine and a human; (2) that these two natures have been 
joined in. the closest and iflftfft intimate union, which is generally 
called personal; (3) that by this union, a more intimate one than 
which cannot be conceived^ the natures are Pfliftiffl ipingled, as has 

been condemned in the Eutychians, nor the person divided, as has 
been condemned in the Nestorians; but (4) that this union must 

be regarded as without change, mixture, division, and interruption 
(arptoruc, dovyxirruf, aiuuptrof, d^w/a/tr-ru?) ; and therefore (5) that by . 
this union neither the difference of natures nor the peculiar condi 
tions of either have been removed: for the human nature of Christ 
is always human, nor has it ever, by its own natural art, ceased _to 
be finite, extended, circumscribed, passible; but the divine nature 
is and always remains infinite, immeasurable, impassible; (6) 
that nevertheless by the power ol the personal union the proper- 
ties of both natures have become common to the person of Christ, 
so that the person of Christ, the God-mar^ possesses divine proper 
ties, uses them, and is named by thernj that in addition to this 
(7) by means of the hypostatic union there have been imparted to /~ 
the human nature of Christ the very highest gifts of acquired con 
dition (litihitt/alia). for example, the greatest power, the highest 
wisdom, although finite; but that (8) to the mediatorial acts of ^ 
Christ each nature contributed its own part, and that the divine 


nature conferred upon the acts of the human nature infinite power 
to redeem and save the human race. In a word (9) that the inti 
mate union of God and man in Christ is so wonderful and sublime 
that it surpasses, in the highest degree, the comprehension of our 
mind." But "they" (the Reformed) ".differ from us when the 
question is stated concerning the impartation abstractly consid- 
ered^ or of a nature to a nature^ because they deny that, by the 
hypostatic union, the properties of the divine nature have been 
truly and really imparted to the human nature of Christ, and that, 
too, for common possession, use, and designation, so that the 
human nature of our Saviour is truly Omnipresent, Omnipotent, 
and Omniscient." The controversy between the Lutherans and 
Reformed had mainly reference, therefore, to the possession and 
use of the divine attributes which were ascribed to the human 
nature of Christ; among these the following were made especially 
prominent, viz., omnipotence, omniscience ( which He used, how 
ever, in the state of humiliation, not always and everywhere, but 
freely, when and where it pleased Him), omnipresence, vivific 
power, and the warship of religious adoration, which also were 
ascribed to the humanity of Christ (so that the flesh of Christ 
should be worshiped and adored with the same adoration as that 
due to the divine nature of the ^oyof). Among these attributes, 
however, none was more zealously controverted than that of omni- 
^ because this was the chief point in dispute between the 

Lutherans and Reformed with regard to a presence of Christ in 
the Lord s Supper. The chief objection against the real presence 
of Christ in the Holy Supper, Carlstadt, and after him Zwingli, 
had derived from the statement that Christ is sitting at the RigM 
Hand of the Father, and therefore cannot be at the same time upon 
earth, in^the elements of bread and wine.. In opposition to this, 
Luther appealed to the personal union; from this, and the conse 
quent communion of natures, he inferred the omnipresence of the 
flesh of Christ, and proved thereby the possibility of a real pres 
ence of the body and blood of Christ in the Holy Supper. Thus 
the doctrine of the omnipresence, or, as the Reformed expressed 
it. the ubiquity of the Jlesh in Christ, became very important, and 
the Lutheran theologians are very accuratejn its presentation. 

Q.UEN. thus states the questloFherelit issHe (III, 185)j_^Whether 
Christ, according to the humanity united with TTis divine and in 
finite person, and exalted at the Right Hand of the divine majesty, 
in this glorious state of exaltation is present to all creatures in the 
universe with a true, real, substantial, and efficacious omnipres^ 
once?" From this question the other.-, vi/., whether omnipresence 


is to be ascribed to Christ, according to His divine nature, and 
whether it is to be at all ascribed to the person of Christ, are care 
fully distinguished. The first follows, as a matter of course; and 
also in regard to the other question, both parties were agreed in 
this, namely, that omnipresence is properly ascribed to the entire 
person, in the concrete, or in the divine person of Christ, in Avhich 
human nature subsists, wherever it is; or, what is the same thing, 
that Christ is everywhere, by reason of His person. And, from 
the question stated above, they_ further distinguished the one with 
reference to the pn-x<n<l or intimate presence, which is mutual be 
tween the Myoc and th^ flesh, (by which the ^oyo? has the assumed 
nature most intimately present with itself, without regard to place, 
so that the /.tyof never and nowhere is without or beyond His flesh, 
or this without or beyond Him, but, where you place the ?.<Jyoc, 
there you also place the flesh, lest there be introduced a Nestorian 
disruption of the person subsisting of both natures). The contro- 
versy had rather to do with the outward presence, viz. , that rela_t- 
ing to creatureSj_and the most of the Dogmaticians understood by 
this omnipresence, (lie moxt near ami ptr< /;/ /// <l<nninn>n <>f C/ir/xt in 
His human nature." Accordingly, the thesis of the Dogmaticians 
concerning the question is the following: "The majesty of the 
omnipresence of the /<>jf was communicated to the human nature 
of Christ in the first moment of the personal union, in consequence. 
of which, along with the divine nature, it is now omnipresent, in 
the state of exaltation, in a true, real, substantial, and efficacious 
presence. And so there is given to Christ, according to His human 
nature,^ most near and powerful dominion, by which Christ as 
man, exalted at the Right Hand of God, preserves and governs all 
things in heaven and earth by the full use of His divine majesty." 
QUEX. (Ill, 185). "And, finally, it was protested that this omni 
presence was not physical, diffusive, expansive, gross, local, cor 
poreal, and divisible (as the Calvinists pretend that we hold), and 
it was described as majestatic, divine, spiritual, indivisible, which 
did not imply any locality, or inclusion, or expansion, or diffu 
sion." (Id. Ill, 186.). And it was not thereby asserted that the 
body of Christ had lost its natural properties in such a manner that 
He had now ceased to be at any particular place. (HoLL. (712) : 
1 We must distinguish between a natural and personal act of the_ 
.flesh of Christ. The flesh of Christ, by an act of nature, when 
Christrchveit upon earth, was in a certain place, in the womb of His 
mother, upon the cross, etc., circumscribedly, or by way of occupy 
ing it; and now also in the state of glory, in accordance with the 
manner of glorified bodies, it is in a certain celestial somewhere, 


not circumscribedly, however, but definitively. But to this nat 
ural act that personal act is not opposed, by which it is illocally in 
the Ao} oc, from which presence all local ideas or conceptions are to 
be abstracted.") To the proofs for the second genus of idiomata, 
the Dogmaticians add also, for the omnipresence especially, that 
derived from the sitting at the right hand of God. (HoLL. (714): 
Christ rules with omnipresence according to the same nature 
according to which He sits at the right hand of God. But, accord 
ing to His human nature, etc. Therefore, to sit at the Right Hand 
of God is explained by ruling. Just as, therefore, the Right Hand 
of God is everywhere and rules, for by this is designated in Holy 
Scripture the immense and infinite power and might of God, no 
where excluded, nowhere inoperative; thus, to sit at the Right Hand 
of God is, in virtue of the exaltation, to rule everywhere with 
divine power, truly immeasurable, and this cannot be conceived of 
without omnipresence, for surely the divine dominion is not over 
the absent, but over the present.") The opposite statement of the 
Reformed was this: Just as the body of Christ, while He moved 
upon earth, was not present in heaven, so now that same body, 
after the ascension, is not present on earth; and, exalted above the 
heavens, we believe it is held there." Their main arguments 
against the omnipresence were these: Because thereby the realitv 
of the body of Christ, of His death and ascension to heaven would 
be disproved, inasmuch as a true human nature cannot be extended 
infinitely; because He who is omnipresent cannot diej because He 
who is, by virtue of His omnipresence, already in heaven, cannot 
still ascend thither." To these objections Hou.. (718) answers? 
"1. The_ doctrine concerning the reality of the flesh of Christ Ts 
not overthrown by the ascription of omnipresence to it, for it is not 
omnipresent by a physical and extensive, but by a hyperphysical. 
divine, and illocal presence, which belongs to it not formally and" 
per se^but by way of participation, and by virtue of the personal 
union. 2. The doctrine concerni ng the death of Christ is not over- 
tumed by it, for the natural union ot body and soul was indeed 
dissolved by death, but without disturbing the permanent hypo- 
static union of the divine and human natures. 3. The doctrine of 
the ascension of Christ is not disproved by it, for before the ascen 
sion the flesh of Christ was present in heaven by an uninterrupted 
presence as a personal act, but He ascended visibly to heaven inji 
glorified body according to the divine economy. ( o usavopav^ so 
that He might fill all things with the omnipresence of His domin 
ion. For Christ, by virtue of His divine omnipotence, can make 
Himself present in various ways. * 


Notwithstanding these precise statements concerning the omni 
presence of the flesh of Christ, there still was no uniform and, in 
all its features, settled doctrinal statement concerning it prevalent 
among the Lutheran Dogmaticians. The reason of this lies in the 
fact, that until the time of the FORM. CONC. the only aim had in 
view, in the development of this doctrine, was the practical one of 
showing through it the possibility of the presence of the body and 
blood of Christ in the Holy Supper. So far as this was necessary, 
all the Lutheran Dogmaticians are agreed. But this is no longer 
the case to such an extent, when, without reference to the doctrine 
of the Lord s Supper, they had to do merely with the dogmatic 
development of the doctrine of omnipresence. As, however, the 
Dogmaticians were led by the right tact, to attribute no great im 
portance to a difference which led to no practical result, they had 
no controversy about it, and the different views stood unassailed 
alongside of each other. There was still room enough for different 
views. The questions, e. g., could arise: 1. Whether the omni 
presence of the flesh of Christ was to be conceived of as only one 
In 7 virtue of which Chrisjt, according^ to His human nature, could be_ 
omnipresent ///< ml irfnri ll> trixficd ; or, ;is one liy virtue of 
which, in consequence of the communicatio idiomatum, He was 
always, without exception, actually omnipresent from the state of 
exaltation onward, and only refrained from exercising this omni 
presence during the state of humiliation^ in consequence of the 
mediatorTaT\vork He had undertaken? 2. _How the oninipresence_ 
of the flesh of Christ should be defined; whether only as one by 
virtue of which the human nature participates in the dominion 
which is exercised by the divine nature; or as one by virtue of 
which it is present to all creatures in such a manner as Christ is 
present to them by virtue of His divine nature ? In regard to these 
questions, the views of the Dogmaticians, already before the FORM. 
CONC., were not alike, and the FORM, itself is so variable in its 
utterances on this subject that a satisfactory answer to the ques- 
tions above stated cannot be elicited from it. Hence it happens 
that later Dogmaticians of different views believed themselves 
authorized to appeal to the FORM. Coxr. in vindication of their 
several opinions. After the completion of the FORM. CONC. , there 
fore, the Dogmaticians were divided in opinion, about as follows, 
viz.: the majority mentioning the omnipresence only as "a most 
powerful and present dominion over creatures, either not entering 
at all upon the questions of the absolute presence, or rejecting that 
doctrine entirely. This omnipresence was then called also modi 
fied omnipresence. Thus QUEN., BR., the latter of whom appeals 


(the authors of the Form. 



ib^the ^FoRMT CoNcr (4%) : " - rt (JTte 
Cone. ) manifestly describe that omnipresence not as absolute, as^a 
mere close proximity to all creatures and without any efficacious 
influence, but as modified, or joined with an efficacious influence, 
and according to the needs of that universal dominion which. Christ 
exercises according to both His natures.") At the same time they 
assert that, from the time of the exaltation onward, Christ is to be 
regarded as constantly omnipresent according to His human nature, 
i. e. , as always exercising the most powerful dominion. Others, 
on the other hand, as the majority of the Swabian theologians, but 
beside these also, HOLL. , asserted, that not only the most power 
ful dominion belonged to the human nature of Christ from the 
time of the exaltation onward, but also the true presence, and the^ 
latter, indeed, from the time of the conception. _A_short-lived con- ^ 
troyersy arose at the.time_wh_en thejheol_ogians_of Helmstadt aiid v 
Brunswick refused to accept the FORM. CONC., mainly because, .a^ { 
they asserted, a doctrine of the omnipresence was taught in it with\ 
which they could not coincide. They admitted, indeed, that Christ, 
according to His human nature, can be present where He will; but 
they maintained that He actually willed to be present only there \ 
where it has been expressly promised concerning Him, namely, in | 
the Holy Supper and in the Church. Besides, they characterized^ 
this presence not as an effect of omnipresence, but of omnipotence. | 
The omnipresence maintained by them they designated the relative v 
omnipresence. This view (which Calixtus, also, at a later date, i 
adopted) was opposed by both classes of Dogmaticians, mainly ^ 
because they wished to have the possibility of the presence of Christ I 
in the Holy Supper deduced from His omnipresence, and this from * 

kthe communicatio idiomatum, without agreeing among themselves 
as to the mode of stating it. This point, therefore, has remained 
unsettled. Another question that arose was, concerning the time 
in which Christ, according ; to His human nature, assumed the ex 
ercise of the divine majesty. Ct ., on that subject, the topic oi the 
"States of Christ." 

[21] Scriptural Proofs. Majesty is imparted to the human nature: 
[att. 11: 27; Luke 1: 33; John 3: 13; 6_: 62; Phil. 2: 6; Heb. 2: 
The sitting of Christ., the marij at the right hand of Majesty Matt. 
26: 64; Mark 14: 62; Luke 22: 69; Rom. 8: 34; Eph. 1: 20; Heb. 
7: 26; .8j 1. Omnipotence, Matt. 28: 18; Phil. 3: 21. Omniscience^ 
Col. 1:19} 2: 3, 9. Omnipresence., Matt. 18: 20; 2J: 20; E^h. 1: 
23; 4_: 10. Power to quicken, John 6: 51; 1 Cor. 15: 21, 45. 
to judge, Matt. 16: 27; John 5: 27; Acts 17: 31. 
~~[22] FORM. CONC. (Sol. Dec., VIII, 46): < < ffiith_respjectjo 




7*>Y frt^f^ 

,/ s&L. 

&> ^? -S ^ 7^" if 1 1~rv-*j>* 



JV functions of Christ s office, the person does not act and operate in, 

, M V\ * *- ..... .. A ^ 

^ -or with one, or through one nature alone, but rather in, with, ac^ 
yjp^ cording to and through_both natures; or, as the Council of Chalce- 
don declares, one nature effects and works, with impartation of the_ 
.other, that which is peculiar to each. Therefore Christ is our 
Mediator, Redeemer, King, etc., not merely according to one 
, ^nature, whether the -divine or the human, but according to both 
natures." GRH. (Ill, 555): "The Son of God took upon Him 
self human nature, for the purpose of performing in, with, and 
through it, the work of redemption, and the functions of the medi 
atorial office, 1 John 3: 8, etc. Hence in the works of His office, 
He acts not only as God, nor only as man, but as God-manj and, 

X e 


what is the same, the two natures in Christ, in the works of the 
1 v .x)ffice, do not act separately, but conjointly. From unity of person 
Hollows unity in official act." HOLL. (726): "The remote basis 
$of this impartation is unity of person, and the intimate communion 
of the divine nature in Christ. The proximate basis is the cqnimu- 
itio idiomatum of the first and second genus. 
[23] CHMN. (de duab. nat, 85): "When one nature in Christ 
v ^ J does that which is peculiar to it, or, when Christ does anything, 

4V V\ according to the property of one nature, in that action or suffering 
| x the other nature is not unemployed, so as to do either nothing or 
"Vvl v \something else; but, what is a peculiarity of the one nature is 
* \ 1 effected and performed in Christ with impartation of the other 

it \<> 

S\j nature, that difference being observed which is peculiar to each. 
* ^Therefore, when Christ, according to His human nature, suffers and 
^ ^ \dies, this also occurs with impartation to the other nature, not so that 
tin- divine nature in Him also suffers and dies, for this is peculiar, 
to the human nature, but because the divine nature of Christ is 
personally present with the nature suffering, and wills the suffering 
of its human nature, does not avert it, but permits its humanity to 
suffer and die, strengthens and sustains it so that it can bear the 
^ v - immense weight of the sin of the world and of the entire wrath of^ 
^ ^God, and renders these sufferings precious to God and saving to the 
^ j^ world? 1 " " 

^^V t^ CHMN. (deduab. nat, 85): "Because the offices and bless 
ings of Christ as Saviour are such that, in many or most of them, 
the human nature in Christ cannot co-operate with its natural 
or essential properties or operations alone, numberless attributes 
inrep<j>vaiKa nai TrapafvatKa [supernatural and extraordinary] were deliv 
ered and imparted to the human nature from its hypostatic union 
with divinity." 

HOLL. (726) : "The mode of impartation and mutual confluence 


consists in this, that the divine nature of the M-yoc not only performs 
divine works, but also truly and really appropriates to itself the 
actions of the assumed fleshy but the human nature, in the office 
of the Mediator, acts, not only according to its natural strength, 
but also according to that divine power which it has communicated 
to it from the personal uniojn." QUEN. (Ill, 106): " I say that 
by means of His person, He appropriates to Himself actions and 
sufferings of humanity, for it must not be said the divine nature 
sheds blood, suffers, dies, just as it is said that the human nature 
quickens, works miracles, governs all things, but God sheds His 
blood, suffers, dies." 

[25] CHMN. (de duab. nat, 86): "The testimonies of Scripture 
clearly show that the union of the two natures in Christ occurred 
in order that the work of redemption, atonement, and salvation 
might be accomplished in, with, and through both natures of Christ. 
For if redemption, atonement, etc., could have been accomplished 
by the divine nature alone, or by the human nature alone, the A<tyo f 
would have in vain descended from Heaven for us men, and for 
our salvation, and become incarnate man." GRH. (Ill, 556): 
; The human nature indeed could have suffered, died, shed its 
blood. But the sufferings and bloody death of Christ would have 
been without a saving result, if the divine nature had not added a 
price of infinite value to those sufferings and that death, which the 
Saviour endured for us." Accordingly, the work of redemption^ 
as well as every individual action of Christ, is considered as one in 
which both natures in Christ participate. The technical term for 
this is orroteAf apa ( l 1 a common work, resulting from a communica 
tive and intimate confluence of natures, where the operations of 
both natures concur to produce this, or the work is divinely-human, 
because both natures here act unitedly." QUEN. (Ill, 105)). 
Yet as each individual action proceeds, first of all, from one of the 
two natures, namely, from that one to whose original properties it 
belongs, the technical term for this is kvepyrina ( a result peculiar to 
one nature ). Thus, the shedding of Christ s blood is an operation 
of the human nature, for only the human nature has shed blood ; 
the infinite merit which belongs to this blood is an operation of the 
divine nature. But the atonement for our sins, which has been 
wrought by means of the shed blood only in view of the fact that 
both natures have contributed their part thereto, the human nature 
by shedding it, and the divine nature by giving to the blood its 
infinite merit, is the work (an-orea^a) of both natures. HOLL. (728) 
further describes the apotelesmata of Christ, as of a twofold order. 
" The divine nature of the Wyoc cannot effect some things except by 


a union with flesh (JOT example, suffering as a satisfaction, a life- 

giving dentil) ; other things, from His free good pleasure or purpose^ 
He does not will to effect without flesh (for example, miracles) . 

[2(i] BR. (47<S): "The third genus of communicatio idiomatifM 
consists in this, that actions pertaining to the office of Christ do 
not belong to a nature singly and alone; hut. they an- common to 
both, inasmuch as each contributes to them that whfofo is its own, 
and thus each acts with fofi ftnmmnninaUon of the other. * 

QUEN. (Ill, 209): " The antithesis of the Calvinists, who (1) 
deny that the communication of the apotelesmata or of official, 
actions can he referred to the communicatio Idiowatum. . . . (2) 
who teach that both natures act their parts by themselves alone, 
:ieh without participation of the other, and thus that thf human 
nature of Christ in the works of the office only performs human 
works from its own natural properties, but must altogether be ex 
cluded from divine actions. . . . (3) who affirm that the flesh 
of Christ contributed to the miracles only as a mere and passive 
(EP>-O) instrument." 

[27] CHMN. (de duab. nat. ): "This union of the kingship and 
priesthood of Messiah was made for the work of redemption, for 
the sake of us and our salvation. But as redemption had to be 
made by means of suffering and death, there was need of a human 
nature. And it pleased God that, for our comfort, in the offices oF 
the kingship, priesthood, and lordship of Christ, our assumed 
nature should also be employed, and thus the acts {tmm^iara) of 
Christ s offices should be accomplished in, with, and through both." 

[28] CHMN. (de duab. nat., 81): " For let not exactness be re- 
garded as idle, just as also accurate care in speaking. But let the 
question. What is the true use of this doctrine? be always in sight. 
For thus we will be the more inclined to cultivate care in speaking 
properly, and will be the more easily able to avoid falling into 
logomachies and quibbles." . . . 


34. The Threefold Office of Christ^ 

The doctrine of the Person of Christ is followed by that of 
the Work that He performed ; for to accomplish this was the 

*GRH. was the first to treat of this entire doctrine under a separate head ; be 
fore his day it was discussed in connection with other doctrines, usually under 
the head of Justification ; and the form, too, in which the doctrine is now set forth, 


very design of His incarnation. This Work is the redemption 
of the human race. CONF. AUG., Ill : " They teach, that the 
Word, i. e., the Son of God, assumed human nature . . . that He 
might reconcile the Father to us and become a sacrifice, not only 
for original sin, but also for all the actual sins of men." To ac 
complish this work of redemption was the work assigned to 
Christ upon earth, and the undertaking that He assumed. We 
designate it as His mediatorial work, and understand by it all 
that Christ did to effect a redemption, and all that He is still 
doing to make it available to men. " The mediatoriaL office is 
the function, belonging to the whole person of the God-man, origi 
nating theanthropic actions, by which function Christ, in, with, and 
through both natures, [1] perfectly executed, and is even now ac 
complishing, by way of acquisition and application, all things that 
are necessary for our salvation." QUEN. (Ill, 212) [2]. This 
work Christ undertook in its whole extent, i. e. (1) While upon 
earth, He Himself announces to men the divine purpose of re 
demption, and provides that after His departure it shall be 
further announced to men. (2) He Himself accomplishes the 
redemption, by paying the ransom through which our recon 
ciliation with God is effected. (3) After His departure He 
preserves, increases, guides, and protects the Church of tile 
Redeemed thus established. As these three functions corres 
pond to those of the Old Testament prophets, priests, and 
kings, the mediatorial office of Christ is accordingly divided 
into the Prophetic, Sacerdotal, and Regal offices. f3] 

[1] The Dogmaticians say here, expressly, that Christ is Medi 
ator according to both natures, as would indeed naturally and 
properly follow from the topic just discussed. Erroneous opinions 
upon this subject, that arose even in the bosom of the Evangelical 
Church itself, furnished the occasion of giving prominence to it, 
and so we see the FORM. CONC. already denouncing existing errors 
upon this subject (Epit., Art. Ill, 2 sq. : Concerning the righteous 
ness of faith before God): " For one side (Osiander) thought that 

appears for the first time complete (though in brief outlines) in GRH. MEL. is 
the first to use the expression, Kingdom of Christ ; he does this, however, in the 
doctrine of the resurrection. STRIGKL then annexed the Priesthood of Christ, 
which afterwards was developed into the sacerdotal and prophetic offices. We 
cannot ignore the fact, that this topic has failed to receive anything like as thor 
ough a discussion and development as many others. 


Christ is our righteousness only according to the divine nature. 
... In opposition to this opinion, some others (Stancar, the 
Papists) asserted that Christ is our righteousness before God only 
according to the human nature. To refute both errors, we believe 
. . . that Christ is truly our righteousness, but yet neither accord 
ing to His divine nature alone, nor according to His human nature 
alone, but the whole Christy according to both natures." . . . 
QUEN. (Ill, 212): "JV>r both natures concur for the mediatorial 
office, not by being mingled, but distinctly and with the properties 
of both remaining unimpaired, and yet not separately, but each 
with impartation of the other." 

[2] GRH. (Ill, 576): " The office of Christ consists m the work 
of mediation between God and man, which is the end of incarna; 
tion^l Tim. 2: 5." HOLL. (729): "If the mediatorial office of 
Christ be taken in a narrower sense, it seems to coincide with His 
sacerdotal office, 1 Tim. 2:5, 6. Yet this does not prevent us 
from receiving it in a wider sense, so as to embrace His office as 
prophet and king. For Moses, the prophet, is likewise called 
mediator, and it escapes the observation of no one that kings not 
(infrequently bear the part of mediators." 

[3] GRH. (Ill, 576): " The office of Christ is ordinarily stated 
as threefold, that of a prophet, a priest, and a king; yet this can 
be reduced to two members" (thus Hutter), "so that the office oi 
Christ is stated as twofold, that of a priest and of a king. For the 
priest s office is not only to sacrifice, pray, intercede, and bless, 
but also to teach, which is a work that they refer to His office as a 
prophet." QUEN. (Ill, 212): "Yet, by most, the tripartite dis 
tinction is retained." " The appropriateness of this distribution 
is proved according to GRH. (ib. ) : (1) From the co-ordination of 
Scripture passages. It is correct to ascribe just as many parts to 
the office of Christ, as there are classes to which those designations 
can be referred which are ascribed to Christ with respect to His 
office, and passages of Scripture which speak of the office of Christ. 
But now there are three classes to which the designations which are 
ascribed to Christ, with respect to office, can be referred. There 
fore, etc. (2) From the enumeration of the benefits coming from 
Christ. Christ atones before God for the guilt of our sins . . . 
w T hich is a work peculiar to a priest. Christ publishes to us God s 
counsel concerning our redemption and salvation, which is the 
work of a prophet. Christ efficaciously applies to us the benefit of 
redemption and salvation, and rules us by the sceptre of His Word 
and Holy Ghost, which is the work of a king." . . . 









35. The Prophetic Office. 


By the Prophetic Office we understand the work of Christ, in 

so far as He proclaims to men the divine purpose of redemp-j 
tion, and urges them to accept the offered salvation. [1] This 
"^work Christ performed as long as He was upon the earth ; Hei,\ 
- thereby acted as a prophet, for it was (lie business of prophets 
Jto teach and to declare the will of God; [2] and, in conse-^ 
^-quence of the greater dignity and power that belonged to Him 
J as the God-man, He performed this work in a much more per- 
^ feet and effective manner than al]_the prophets that preceded , 
{ Him* [3] But this did not cease with His departure from the^ 
^ earth ; on the other hand, by the establishment of the sacred 
,- office of the ministry, Christ made provision that this worjc 
\ should still be performe_d, and that, too, with the same effi- 
f ciency as before, inasmuch as He imparted to the Word and 
the Sacraments, the dispensation of which constitutes the w<n k 
i of the ministry, the same indwelling power and efficiency that * 
,v belong to Himself by virtue of His divine nature ; and thus, 
in them and through them, He is still effectively working >^ 
since His departure. [4] His prophetic office is, t^erefore^loX 
be regarded as one stjll perpetuated, and we are to distinguish 
only between its immediate and mediate exerciseJS] j^ "vj 


" The prophetic office is the function of Christ the God-man, 
by which, according to the purpose of the most holy Trinity, 
He fully revealed to us the divine will concerning the redemp 
tion and salvation of men, with the earnest intention that all 
the world should come to the knowledge of the heavenly 
truth." (QuEN., Ill, 212) [6] 

called a Prophet, Deut. 18: 18 ; Matt. 21: 11 ; John 

v ^ 

: i $O6: 14 ; Luke 7: 16 ; 24: 19 ; an Evangelist, Is. 41: 27 ; aJIas-y 

V !<A ter, Is. 50: 4; 5_5: 4 ; 63: 1 ; Rabbi or Teacher, Matt. 23: 8, ^ 
ILlO; Bishop of Souls, f Pet. 2: 25; Shepherd, Ezek. 34: 23 ;^| * 
\%J: 24 ; John 10: 11 ; Heb. 13: 20. ^ 

I [1] GRH. (Ill, 578): (< The function of teaching is that by 5 y -*! 
^ which Christ instructs His Church in those things necessary to be j *t ^> 
^ known and to be believed for salvation^" QUEN. (Ill, 217):V^ ; 
will of God, to reveal which Christ from eternity waa>|^ 
and in time was sent forth as the great Prophet, embraces 

~ primarily and principally the doctrine of the Gospel, but second- 
\M arily the Law, just as also the revealed Word of God itself is J 
divided into Law and Gospel. Specifically considered, this office I 
consists : (a) in the full explanation of the doctrine of the Gospel.^ 
before enveloped by the shadows and types of the Law, or in the vS 
> proclamation of the gratuitous promise of the remission of sins, of ^ 
righteousness and life eternal, by and on account of Christ; . . . 
(6) in the declaration and true interpretation of the Law." Con 
cerning the relation of Christ to the Law, HOLL. (760): "The old** 
Moral Law Christ neither annulled, nor abated, nor perfected, since 
it is most perfect (Ps. 19: 7), yet He delivered the same from tht 
corruptions of the Pharisees, and fully interpreted it (M_att. 5: 21, 
seq. ). Therefore, Christ is not a new legislator, but the interpreter 
and maintainer of the old Law. 

[2] HOLL. (756): "The office of the prophets of the Old Testa- 
was to teach the Word of God, to hand down the true 
; worship of God, to make known secret and predict future things, 
i As Christ also did these things, He discharged the functions of the^ 


of prophet/ Yet no stress is placed upon the latter, vi/.. , 

"prophecy concerning the future. Therefore. Ql K.\. (Ill, 218): 
" The office of prophet does not consist simply and exclusively in \ 

Vl>the revelation of future things, but generally in the announcement^ 
Vjof the divine will." 

3 ! [3] HOLL. (756): "Christ is the greatest prophet (Luke 7: 16; ^J j^ 
| H)eut, 18: 18; Acts 3: 22; John 1: 45; _6: 14; Heb. 3: 5, 6); a P ,^ 
Whniversal prophet (John 1:9; M_att. 28: 19); the most enlightened jM\$ X 
V propjiet (Ps. 45: 7; John 3: 34; Col. 2: 3; John 1: 18); the *>~jj 
prophet having the most seals^ of authority (John 6: 27; Mjitt. 3: | , ? 
17: 17:5; John 12: 28); the most powerful and exemplary (Luke I 
V24: 19)." GRH. (Ill, 578): " The efficacy of the doctrine is that^ | fj 
|\jivine power by which Christ, through the Holy Ghost, effectually f > 
|moves the hearts of men to embrace the doctrine of faith (P_s. 68:\| |^1 
35; John 6: 45)." Nl J 

[4] HOLL. (759): "According to His divine nature, He has I ( ^ 
united the highest power, efficacy, and influence with the Word ^ ^ v 
Sacraments. Whence the Lord co-worked everywhere 
the apostles. 

[5] QUEN. (Ill, 218): "He revealed this divine will immedi-* 


Mediately, when He employed the vicarious labor of thejrpostles 
and their successors, through whom He perpetuated, still perpetu- 

- ^* /T*- /^^ 

/& v+af&A, w~ 


ates, and willperpetuate to the end of the world, the office of 
teaching. John 20: 21; Matt. 28: 19; M_ark 16: 15; Erjh. 4: 11." 
GRH. (Ill, 578): "To this office of Christ, therefore, belong the 
publication, in the Gospel, of the divine counsel concerning the 
redemption of the human race, the appointment and preservation 
of the office of the ministry, the appointment of the Sacraments, 
the giving of the Holy Ghost, and, through Him, the effectual 
change, illumination, regeneration, renewal, sanctification, etc., of 
human hearts." 

[6] QUEN. (Ill, 219): "The end designed by Christ, jhe 
givat-:-t prophet, is, in itself, the bringing of <ill men to the knowl 
edge of heavenly truth. 1 Tim. 2: 4; ~2 IVt. 3: !>. For all things 
are so arranged that the blind may be led into the way, and those 
who walk in darkness may be enlightened. Acts 26: 18. For, 
although it happens with regard to some that they are thereby 
blinded and hardened, yet this happens not by the fault of tins 
prophet, and His work, but through their own wickedness they 
bring this evil upon themselves. John 3: 19; 12: 39, 40." 

36. The Sacerdotal Office. 

The second office of Christ is to accomplish the redemption 
itself and reconciliation with God. [1] Christ thereby per 
formed the work of a priest, for it was the office of priests to 
propitiate God by the sacrifices they offered, and therewith to 
remove the guilt which men had brought upon themselves. 
Christ, however, did not, like_the_priests of the Old Testarnent, 
bring something not His own as a sacrifice, but Himself, 
whence He is both priest and sacrifice in one person. [2] This 
part of His work is called the Sacerdotal Office. "The sacer- 
^%J dotal office consists in this, that Christ holds a middle ground 
\^ between God and men, who are at variance w r ith each other, 
r \ so_that He offers sacrifice and prayers that Hejnay reconcile 
3 J rnan_with God." [3]- (En., 491.) Accordingly it is subdivided 
into two parts, corresponding to the two functions that belong 
to priests, i. e., the offering of sacrifice and intercessory prayer. 
[4] The w r ork is, therefore, in part already accomplished, 
and in part is -still being ^executed Jby. Christ. The first part 
of it is _called satisfaction, by which expression, at the same 
time, the reason is implied why reconciliation with God was 
possible only through a sacrifice ; because thereby satisfaction 


was to be rendered to God, who had been offended by our sins, 
and therefore demanded punishment. [5] The other part is 
called intercession. 

I. SATISFACTION. If the wrath of God, which rests upon 
men on account of their sins, together with all its conse 
quences, is just and holy, then it is not compatible with God s 
justice and holiness that He should forgive men their sins ab 
solutely and without punishment, and lay aside all wrath 
together with its consequences ; not compatible with His justice, 
for this demands that He hold a relation to sinners different 
from that He holds towards the godly, and that He decree pun 
ishment for the former ; not with His holiness, for in virtue 
of this. He hates the evil ; finally, it is not compatible with 
His truth, for He has already declared that He will punish 
those who transgress His holy Law. [6] If God, therefore, 
under the impulse of His love to men, is still to assume once 
more a gracious relation to them, something must first occur 
that can enable Him to do this without derogating from His 
justice and holiness ; [7] the guilt that men have brought 
upon themselves by their sins must be removed, a ransom 
must be paid, an equivalent must be rendered for the offence 
that has been committed against God, or, what amounts to the 
same thing, satisfaction must be rendered. [8] Now, as it is 
impossible for us men to render this, we must extol it as a spe_- 
cial act of divine jnercy. [9] that God has made it possible 
through Christ, and that He for this end determined upon the 
incarnation of Christ, so that He might render this satisfaction 
in our stead. [10] In Him, namely, who is God and man, 
by virtue of this union of the two natures in one person. _every-, 
thing that He accomplishes in His human jiature has infinite 
value ; while every effort put forth by a mere man has only 
restricted and temporary value. Although, therefore, a mere 
man cannot accomplish anything of sufficient extent and value 
to remove the infinite guilt that rests upon the human race, 
and atone for past transgressions, yet Christ can do this, be- 
cause everything that He does and suffers as man is not sim 
ply the doing and suffering of a mere man, but to what He 
does there is added the value and significance of a divine and 
therefore infinite work, [11] in virtue of the union of the di- 


vine and the human nature, and their consequent communion; 
so that, therefore, there can proceed from Him an act of in 
finite value which He can set over against the infinite guilt of 
mail. and therewith remove this guilt. In Christ, the ( lod- 
iimn. there i- therefore entire ability to perform such a work. 
and in Him there is also the will to do it. But a twofold 
work, however, is to be accomplished. The first thing to be 
effected is, that God cease to regard men as those who have not 
complied ^ith_the,^demands of the holy Law. This is done, 
when He who is to render the satisfaction so fulfils the entire 
Law in the place of men that He has done that which man had 
failed to do. Then it must be brought about that guilt no 
longer rests upon men for which they deserve punishment, and 
tKisis accomplished when He who is rendering satisfaction for 
men takes the punishment upon Himself. Both of these 
things Christ has dune ; 12] the first by_His active obedience 
(uhieh eoiiH-te.l in the most perfect fulfilment of the Law), lor 
thereby He, who in His own person was not subject to the Law, 
fulfilled the Law in the place of man : f i:>] the second by His 
passive obedience (which consisted in the all-sufficient payment 
of the penalties that were awaiting us), for thereby He suffered 
what men should have suffered, and so He took upon Himself 
their punishment, and atoned for their sins in their stead. [14] 
Through this manifestation of obedience to the divine decree 
in both these respects, Christ rendered, in the place of maji, 
[!.")] ;i satisfaction fully sufficient [in] mid available for all 
the sins of all men, which is designated as the former part of 
the sacerdotal office by which Christ, by divine decree, through 
ajnost complete obedience, active and passive, rendered satis 
faction to divine just ice, [17] infringed by the sins of men, to 
thejjraise of divine justice and mercy, and for the procurement 
of our justification and salvation." HOLL. (735). [18} But 
since Christ rendered satisfaction, as above stated, He thereby 
secured for us forgiveness of sins and eternal salvation, which 
we designate as His merit that is imputed to us. QUEN. (Ill, 
225): " Merit flows from satisfaction rendered. Christ ren 
dered satisfaction for our sins, and for the penalties due to 
them, and thus He merited for us the grace of God, forgive 
ness of sine, and eternal life." [19] 

. . 6- 3 V *Tfh ^x> 



II. INTERCESSION. For, after Christ had thus offered Him 
self as a sacrifice for men, the second part of His priestly office 
consists in His actively interceding with the Father, when He 
had been exalted to His right hand, upon the ground of His 
merit, so that men thus redeemed may have the benefit of all 
that He has secured for them by His sufferings and death, of 
everything, in fact, that can promote their bodily, and espec 
ially their spiritual welfare. " Intercession is the latter part 
of the sacerdotal office, by which Christ , the God-man, in vir 
tue of His boundless merit, intercedes truly and properly, and 
without any detriment to His majesty ; intercedes for all men, 
but especially for His elect, that He may obtain for them 
whatsoever things He knows to be salutary for them, for the 
body, and especially for the soul (but chiefly those things 
which are useful and necessary for securing eternal life), 1 John 
2: 1 ; Rom. 8: 34; Heb. 7: 25; : 24." (HOLL., 749.) [20] 
"This intercession has reference, therefore, it is true, to all 
men, as all men while upon earth may become partakers of 
salvation ; but, inasmuch as Christ can give very differently 
and more freely to those who have by faith already become 
partakers of His merit than to those who still reject it, this is 
distinguished as to its comprehension into general intercession, in 
which Christ prays to the Father for all men, that the saving 
merit of His death may be applied to them (Rom. 8: 34 ; Is. 
53: 12; Luke 23: 34); and specia I intercession , in which He 
prays for the regenerate, that they may be preserved and grow 
in faith and holiness, JoJin 17: 9." (HOLL., 749.)[21] As to 
its nature, it is described as true, real, and peculiar, i. e., as 
such, that Christ is not content merely in silence to await the 
effect of His satisfaction, but that He actively, effectively, 
really avails Himself of His merit with the Father in such 
manner as becomes Him in His divine dignity. [22] Finally, 
as to its duration, it never ceases. [23] 

The effect accomplished by the priestly office, in its whole 
compass, is the redemption of men. [24] If they appropriate it 
in faith, their sins are no longer reckoned, nor is temporal or 
eternal punishment imposed, nor does the wrath of God any 
longer rest upon them ; for, in the true and proper sense of 
the term, they are redeemed from all this by the ransom that 

Christ has paid for them. " The redemption of the humanu 
race is the spiritual, judicial, and most costly deliverance of ] 
all men, bound in the chains of sin, from guilt, from the Wrath 

of God, and temporal and eternal punishment, accomplish! < 
by Christ, the God-man, through His active and passive obe-" 
dience, which God, the most righteous judge, kindly accepted 
as a most perfect ransom (Urpoi^ so that the human race, 
troduced into spiritual liberty, may live forever with G< 
HOLL. (752). [25] 



[1] Kd (I, 150): "The end of the office of priest is to reconcile** I 
men with God, Heb. 4: 16; 9: 26, 28; 1 John 2:2." More specifi- JV 
cally, QUEN. (Ill, 222): "(1) The perfect reconciliation of manj^ , 
the sinner, with Godj or the restoration of the former friendship^ 
between the separated parties, God and men the sinners, Rorn^ 5.: J |> 
10; Col. 1: 20, 21; 2 Cor. 5: 18, 19; Heb. 7: 27. (2) Deliverance J^ 
v! from the captivity of the devil, Lu_ke 1: 74; Heb. 2: 14, 15;"l jQhn^j ^ 
" (3) From sin, as well in relation Ja_"ik .guilJt, Qol. 1: 14 ;V/ 

1: 7 asits_slavery, 1 Pet. 1: 18; Gal. 1: 4, and its inherency, v\ 


8: 23." 

5: 2." 


;t The material of the sacrifice is Christ Himself/* 
BR. (493): "While, in other sacrifices, victims are^ \ 
offered different from the priests, Christ sacrificed Himself, when* i 
^ He voluntarily subjected Himself to suffering and death, and thus\|^T 
goffered Himself to God as a victim, for^ expiating not His own sins, ^ "V 
^ but those of the entire human race." \sS 

.5 [3] HOLL. (731): "^Christ s office as a priest is that according | K 
J to which Christ^ the only mediator and priest of the New Testa- ^ 
\ ment, by His most exact fulfillment of the Law and the sacrifice of 
body, satisfied, on our behalf^ the injured divine justice, and 
offers to God the most effectual prayers for our salvation. QUEN. 
(Ill, 220): " From this priestly office Christ is called a priest, Ps. 
110: 4 (Heb. 5: 10; 6: 20; 7: 26; 9_: 11; 10: 21)f a~ greaf high 
Driest, HebT4: 14; a high priest, Heb. 4: 15; 9: 11; : 1." The 
j \priesthood ofjChrist is adumbrated in the priesthood of Aaron nm! 
^Mcldiiscdck. The hitter i> ivhited to the former, as the shadow to 
^Vthe very substance. APOL. CONF. (XII, 37): " As in the Old Tes- 
i tament, the shadow is seen, so, in the New Testament, the thing 
^signified must be sought for, and not another type, as though suffi- 
Viicient for sacrifice." HOLL. (732): As the shadow yields in 
v$ eminence to the body, so does Aaron to Christ." QUEN. (Ill, \ 
^ 22ryT" Hebrews 7 diligently unfolds the type set forth, in ^lejk 


/<r - 


chisedek, and applies it to Christ. . . . This very comparison of 
Christ with Melchisedek is presented in the germ by Moses, Ggn. s. 
14: 1?, is formally declared by David, Ps. 110: 4, and is specifically ^ ^ 
explained by Paul." y 

[4] QUEN. (111,225): " The priestly office of Christ is composed V 
of two parts, satisfaction and intercession ; because, in the first place, { 
He made the most perfect satisfaction for all the sins of the whole^ 
world, and earned salvation. In the second place, He anxiously^, 
interceded and still intercedes and mediates, on behalf of all, forv* v 
^ v the application of the acquired salvation. That the Messiah wouldv . * 
^ ^perform these functions of a priest, Is. 53: 12 clearly predicted." 

[5] HOLL. (735): " Satisfaction is not a Scriptural but an eccleA i* ^ 
siastical term, yet its synonyms exist in the holy volume, namely, J ^H 
t?.qgftof, propitiation for the sins of the whole world (1 John 2: 2;S 
4_: 10), (t?.qgrypwv, Rom. 3: 24, 25), KaraMayq, Rom. 5: 10; 2 Cor. 5^J 
Eph. 1:7; Col. 1: 14, paying the ransom (rov^ 


Mjitt. 20: 28. For this redemption denotes the payment of a suffi- $ 
cient price for the captive; and the reconciliation of God with men^< 
;is described in Scripture in such a manner, that it is evident thatv- 
was made not without a ransom, which divine justice demanded 
!of the Mediator." 

1 [6] HUTT. (Loc. Com., 418): "This threatening (Gfin. 2: 17) 
Bought necessarily to have been fulfilled after the Fall of our first 
: parents, because the truth and justice of God are immutable, an 
(Joil cannot lie. Hut if God had remitted anything from this. His 
truth, as the Photinians say, i. e., from this Law, and, without 
any satisfaction, had embraced the human race in His mercy, 
then God would have lied, when He said: Thou shalt surely die. 
This truth and justice of God, therefore, remaining unmoved, the 
human race must either perish eternallv, or could be redeemed^ 
from this penalty only by the intervention of the most complete^ 
satisfaction. But this could be provided by no mortal. Therefore V J 
it^was^ Accessary to be provided by Christ^Jthe Son of God, as "^ 
, Saviour. 

[7] Therefore the proposition (HUTT., Loc. Com., 406): 

K l merc y f God is not absolute, but in Christ, and founded only m 
g^y Christ and in His merit and satisfaction. . . . God is not only 

supremely merciful but also supremely just. But this justice of 
*,( God required, of the whole human race, such penalties as those 
*>! with which God Himself in Paradise threatened our first parents, 
Jj if they should transgress the Law that had been given them. . . . 
"pi Therefore, there could not be a place for God s mercy until satis-M 

faction should he rendered the divine justice. . . . Hence, the 

<3~3 /I 


position remains, established, firm and immovable, that this mercy 
of God could have had no place, except with respect to, or in con 
sideration of, the satisfaction of Christ." 

The love of God to men is therefore denoted accurately as ordi 
nal^ and not as absolute. HUTT. (Loc. Com., 415) : "God indeed 
loved already from all eternity the whole human race, yet not abso 
lutely and unconditionally, but ordinately ; namely, in His beloved 
Son. This ordinate love includes and relates to the Son likewise 
not absolutely, or only in such a respect as that God willed that 
He should be the teacher of the human race; but also ordinately, 
so far as He took upon Himself the guilt of our sins, and made 
satisfaction on behalf of the whole human race to the divine wrath 
or justice. Therefore, this ordinate affection or love of God neces^ 
sarily presupposes His wrath, so that this love in God could not 
have a place, unless, likewise from all eternity, satisfaction had 
been made to this divine wrath or justice through the Son, who 
from eternity, offered Himself as a mediator between God and 

[8] QUEN. (Ill, 227): "The object to which satisfaction has 
been afforded is the Triune God alone." (HoLL. (736): "Ob- 
serve, that, in a certain respect, Christ made satisfaction to Himself. 
For, as far as Christ made satisfaction as a mediator, He is regarded 
as the God-man; but, in so far as He likewise demanded satisfac 
tion, He must be regarded as the author and maintainer of the 
Law, who by His essence is just,") QUEN. (Ill, 227 sq. ): "For 
the entire Holy Trinity, offended at sins, was angry with men, 
and, on account of the immutability of its justice (Rom. 1: 18), 
the holiness of its nature, and the truth of its threatenings, could 
not with impunity forgive sins, and, without satisfaction, receive 
men into favor. But this Triune God has not the relation of a 
mere creditor, as the Socinians state, but of a most just judge, re 
quiring, according to the rigor of His infinite justice, an infinite 
price of satisfaction. For redemption itself, made for the declara 
tion of righteousness (Rom. 3: 25), proves the necessity of requir 
ing a penalty, either from the guilty one himself, i. c. , man, or from 
his surety, namely, Christ, IfjGod, without a satisfaction, cc jld 
have forgiven man s offence, without impairing His infinite justice, 
tKere would not have been need of such an expense as that of His 
only Son." . . . 

The chief passages in the Symbolical Books are the following: 
AP. CONF. (Ill, 58): "The Law condemns all men; but Christ, 
because without sin He submitted to the punishment of sin, and 
became a victim for us, removed from the Law the right of accus- 


ing and condemning those who believe in Him, since He is the 
propitiation for them, for the sake of which we are now accounted 
righteous." Ibid. (XXI (IX), 19): "The second requirement, 
in a propitiator, is that his merits be presented in order to give 
satisfaction for others, to bestow upon others a divine imputation, 
that, through these, they may be regarded precisely as righteous as 
though by their own merits. As, if a friend should pay the debt of 
a friend, the debtor would be freed by another s merit just as 
though by his own. The merits of Christ are so presented to us 
that, when we believe in Him, we are accounted just as righteous, 
by our confidence in the merits of Christ, as though we had merits 
of our own." FORM. Coxc. (Sol. Dec., Ill, 57): "Since this obe 
dience of Christ is that not of one nature only, but of the entire 
person, most perfect is the satisfaction and expiation, on behalf of 
the human race, according to which satisfaction was made to the 
eternal and immutable divine justice revealed in the Law. This 
obedience is that righteousness of ours that avails before God. "... 
Moreover, it was especially the Socinians against whom the Dog- 
maticians had to defend the doctrine above stated; and it was under 
the influence of the controversy with them that the doctrine as 
sumed the form just presented. HUTT. , who already in his Loc. 
TH. opposes the Socinian doctrine at great length, states it as fol 
lows: "That man is justified before God, not because of the merit 
or satisfaction of Christ, because neither the justice of God required 
this, nor did Christ by His death afford it, but because alone of 
the forgiveness of sins, which God, not on account of any merit of 
His Son, but from His most free will, grants those who believe in 
the Word of Christ, and pursue a life of innocence." In_refutatip_n 
of this doctrine, HUTT. makes a distinction between three contro 
versies. (402) : "Thejirst is, concerning the mercy of God, which, 
the Photinians contend, (1) is not natural or essential, but -acci 
dental to God; (2) that in respect to men, as sinners, it is alto 
gether absolute, and is not based upon any satisfaction whatever, 
whether of Christ or of ourselves. The second_JSj concerning the 
justice of God; as avenging or punishing the sins of men, of which 
the Photinians imagine that there neither is, nor ever has been, 
any such in God; just as though in the Scriptures God were no 
where read of as ever being or having been angry with sinners. 
The third is. concerning the satisfaction and merit of Christ our 
Saviour; for they absolutely deny both, contending very HasphTem- 
ously, (1) that there was no necessity whatever for a satisfaction; 
... (2) that the suffering of Christ neither was nor could have 
been a satisfaction or merit for our sins; . . . (3) that the final 


cause of Christ s suffering was nothing else than that He might be 
able to show us the way of life, and that, by means of His doctrine, 
we might embrace salvation; . . . (4) that the remission of sins 
comes to us without the shedding of Christ s blood, solely by free, 
unconditional, and absolute will of God s mercy, according to 
which He is willing to forgive us our sins, and truly forgives them 
if we truly repent. 

[9] HOLL. (7%6): "The wisdom and mercy of God especially 
shine forth from the wonderful satisfaction of the Mediator, a most 
precious ransom having been most wisely found, and most merci 
fully determined and accepted." 

[10] HUTT. (Loc. Com., 408): "Wherefore, in order that the 
mercy of God might harmonize with His justice, it was necessary 
that a combination of divine justice and _mercy should intervene; 
by reason ot which, both His justice would press its right, and 
mercy, at the same time, would have a place. We are permitted 
to hold such a combination, and that, too, by far the most perfect, 
in one and the same work of our salvation, with respect to one and 
the same subject, namely, Christ our Saviour. For, when about 
to reconcile the world, and that, too, not without an unparalleled 
feeling of mercy, He saw that satisfaction must first be made to 
justice. Therefore, He turned upon Himself the penalties due our 
sins, He was made sin for us, He truly bore our griefs, and thus 
became obedient to God the Father, even to the death of the cross, 
satisfied divine justice to the exactest point, and thus reconciled 
the world, not only to God the Father, but also to Himself." 

But the price of redemption must be paid God, and to Him the 
satisfaction must be rendered. HUTT. (Loc. Com., 430): "Neither 
the devil, nor sin, nor death, nor hell, but God Himself, was the 
ruler holding the human race in captivity, as He delivered it to the 
infernal prison by this sentence, Thou slialt surely (lie. Tin- 
devil bore only the part of a lictor; sin was like chains; death and 
hell, like a prison. Therefore, the price of redemption was to be 
paid not to the devil,* not to sin, not to death or hell 4 _buLto_God, 
who had it in His power once again to declare the human race free, 

r * [Referring to the doctrine found in many of the early writers of the Church, 
)( especially Origen, Gregory of Nyssa), and in Lombardus and other Scholastics, 
(which represented the price of redemption as paid the devil. Men, they taught, 
(because of sin, had been handed over to Satan s power. Christ offered Himself as 
/man s substitute, and was gladly accepted by Satan, who overlooked Christ s 
^omnipotence, and was thus not only defrauded of his prey, but even himself was 
(destroyed, when the Son of God, brought within his realm, completely overthrew 
land ruined it. It was the work of Anselm to antagonize this perversion of Heb, 
]2: 14, 15, and to define the doctrine that has since prevailed.] 


and to redeem it for grace; provided only a satisfaction to the ex- 
actest point be rendered His justice." 

[11] QUEN. (Ill, 228): "It was the infinite God that was 
offended by sin; and because sin is an offense, wrong, and crime 
against the infinite God, and, so to speak, is Deicide, it has an 
infinite evil, not indeed formally, . . . but objectively, and de 
serves infinite punishments, and, therefore, required an infinite 
price of satisfaction, which Christ alone could have afforded." 
GRH. (Ill, 579): "The guilt attending the sins of the entire 
human race was infinite, inasmuch as it was directed against the 
infinite justice of God. An infinite good had been injured, and, 
therefore, an infinite price was demanded. But the works and 
sufferings of Christ s human nature are finite, and belong to a 
determined time, i. e., are terminated by the period of His humili 
ation. In order, therefore, that the price of redemption might be 
proportionate to our debt and infinite guilt, it was necessary that 
the action or mediation not only of a finite, viz., a human, but 
also of an infinite, i. e., a divine nature, should concur,^md~tFat 
the suffering and death of Christ shouldjacquire power of infinite 
price elsewhere, viz., from the most effectual working of the divine 
nature, and thus that an infinite good might be able to be pre 
sented against an infinite evil." Cf. the doctrine of the third 
genus of communicatio idiomatum. Christ, as the God-man, could 
afford such a satisfaction. QUEN. (Ill, 227): " The source from 
which" (Christ made satisfaction) " comprises both natures, the 
divine, as the original and formal source, and the human, as the 
organic source, acting from divine power communicated through 
the hypostatic union." Cf. FORM. CONC., Sol. Dec., Ill, 56. 

NOTE. The passages cited prove that the Dogmaticians attached 
so much importance to the union of the divine and human natures 
for the special reason that, if the divine nature had not partici 
pated with the human in suffering, in the manner indicated in 
33, Note 23, this suffering would not have had an infinite value, 
and in this they follow^ the theory of Anselm. But this theory 
still further magnifies the importance ~oTlhe union of the two 
natures in Christ by another consideration, stating that if this 
service of infinite value had not been rendered by one who was at 
the same time man, it would have been of no avail for us men;" 
and without this addition the theory is confessedly incomplete. 
Although our Dogmaticiaris do not expressly mention thisjpomt, 
we may still assume that they silently included it. This assump 
tion is justified by the self-consistency, of the Anselmic theory, 
which they on this subject adopted. 


/<&. t-*^^~ f*** 
/-,f- r 

<^-^>t--^x-o > -c-^e-t-v <^x<j 
f / 7 7 


[12] QUEX. (Ill, 244): "The means by the intervention of 
which satisfaction was afforded is the price of Christ s entire obedi 
ence, which embraces (1) the most exact ^fulfilment of the Law; 
(2) the enduring, or most bitter suffering, of the penalties merited 
by us transgressors. For l>y /// * <irt.< ( hri-t expiated the crime 
which man had committed against justice, and by His sufferings^ 
He bore the penalty which, in accordance with justice, man was 
to endure. Hence the obedience of Christ, afforded in our place, 
is commonly saTd to be twofold, the active, which consists in the 
most perfect fulfilment of the Law, and the passive, which consists 
in the perfectly sufficient payment of penalties that awaited us. 
The distinction into active and passive obedience is "not very 
accurate, as Dr. Mentzer well remarks, because the passive obedi 
ence does not exclude the active, but includes it, inasmuch as the 
latter was wonderfully active, even in the very midst of Christ s 
death. Hence Bernard correctly calls Christ 8 ^action passive, and 
His passion active. From the Scriptures and with them we 
acknowledge only one obedience of Christ, and that the most per 
fect, says the already quoted Mentzer, which, according to the 
will of His Father, He fulfilled with the greatest holiness and the 
highest perfection in His entire life, and by the action and suffer 
ing of death. The active obedience is His conformity with the 
very Law^. And therefore, properly and accurately, and by itself, 
it is called obedience. But what is ordinarily called passive pbedi- 
e_nce is the enduring of a penalty inflicted upon the violator of the 
Law. If this is to be named obedience, it will be so called in a 
broad sense, or from its result, for it is certain that alone and with 
out the accompaniment of active obedience, it is not conformity 
with the very Law. . . . The obedience of Christ is with less 
accuracy called passive, because He voluntarily did and suffered 
all things for us and our salvation." 

[13] HOLL. (737): "By His active obedience, Christ most 
exactly fulfilled the divine Law in our stead, in order that peni 
tent sinners, applying to themselves, by true faith, this vicarious 
fulfilment of the Law, might be accounted righteous before God, 
the judge, Gal. 4: 4, 5; Rom. 10: 4; Matt. 5: 17." 

In the doctrine of the active obedience, the following points 
come into consideration: (1) That God could not forgive us if we 
could not be considered as having satisfied the demands of the 
divine Law! QUEN. (Ill, 244): " For, inasmuch as man was not 
only to be freed from the wrath of God as a just judge, but also, in 
order that he might stand before God, there was a necessity for 
righteousness which he could not attain except by the fulfilment 

f- : 3 - 

?** "" x . 

&gff ACTfvF oBEDIENCE. 353 

of the Law, Christ took upon Himself both, and not only suffered 
for us, but also made satisfaction to the Law in all things, in order 
that this His fulfilment and obedience might be imputed to us. 
(2) That Christ was subject to the Law not for His own person/ 
QUEN. (Ill, 246): "The cause on account of which the Son of 
God was subject to the Law was not His own obligation; for Christ 
not only as God, but also according to His human nature, was in 
no way subject to the Law. . . . For Christ, with respect to Him 
self, was the Lord of the entire Law, and not its servant, Mark 2 : 
28. And, although He was and is the seed of Abraham, yet, be 
cause in the unity of His person He was and is the Son of God, 
He was not subject to the Law with respect to Himself." (3) .That. 
consequently as Christ has nevertheless fulfilled the Law, He has 
done it in our steacl GKH. : " Rom. 8: 3. Here there is ascribed 
to the Son of God the fulfilment of the Law, which it was impos 
sible for us to render, in order that the righteousness of the Law 
might be fulfilled in us through faith, viz., through Christ, cf. 
Rom. 5: 8; Phil. 3: 9. The Son of God,- therefore, was sent to 
render that which, because of weakness, was impossible for us, 
and it was, therefore, necessary that the Son of God Himself should 
fulfil the Law for us, in order that the righteousness demanded by 
the Law and rendered by Him might become ours through the 
imputation of faith, and thus, in God s judgment, according to His 
reckoning, might be fulfilled or be able to be regarded as fulfilled 
by us." Christ engaged Himself to fulfil the Law on our account, 
as CALOV. (VII, 424> asserts, already through "circumcision, 
which to Him was not a means of regeneration or renewal, because 
He needed neither; wherefore, for no other reason, except for our 
sake, He submitted to circumcision, and through the same put 
Himself under obligation to render a fulfilment of the Law, that 
should be vicarious or in our place." 

Concerning the nature of the Law that Christ fulfilled, HOLL. 
(737): "The Law to which He was subject is understood both as 
the universal or moral, and the particular, i. e., the ceremonial and 
forensic." QUEN. (Ill, 245): "And the Law was thus fulfilled by 
the Lord: (1) the ceremonial, by showing its true end and scope, 
and fulfilling all the shadows and types which adumbrated either 
His person or office; (2) the judicial, both by fulfilling those things 
which in it belonged to common, natural, and perpetual law; (3) 
the moral, in so far as by His perfect obedience, and the conformity 
of all the actions of His life, He observed the Law without any sin 
and defect, reaffirmed its doctrine which had been corrupted by the 
Pharisees, and restored it to its native integrity and perfection." 



Andr. Osiander gave occasion to the supplementing of the pas 
sive by the active obedience. The doctrine was first developed by 
Flacius (in his work, "Concerning Righteousnesses. Osiander," 
1552) in the following manner: " The justice of God, as revealed 
in the Law, demands of us, poor, unrighteous, disobedient men^ 
two items of righteousness. The first is, that we render to God 
complete satisfaction for the transgression and sin already com 
mitted; the second, that we thenceforth be heartily and perfectly, 
obedient to His Law if we wish to enter into life. If we do not 
thus accomplish this, it threatens us with eternal damnation. And 
therefore this essential justice of God includes us under sin and the 
wrath of God. . . . Now there are often two parts of this right 
eousness due to the Law: the former, the complete satisfaction of 
punishment for sirTcommitted, for, since it is right and proper to 
punish a sinner, one part of righteousness is willingly to suffer the 
merited punishment; the other part is perfect obedience, which 
should then follow and be rendered. Therefore the righteousness 
of the obedience of Christ, which He rendered to the Law for us, 
consists in these two features, viz., in His suffering and in the 
perfection of His obedience to the commands of God." 

The FORM. CONC. (Sol. Dec., III T 14) states the doctrine thusj 
" Therefore the righteousness which, out of pure grace, is imputed 
before God to faith or believers, is the obedience, the suffering, and 
the resurrection of Christ, by which, for our sake, He made satis 
faction to the Law and expiated our sins. For since Christ is not 
only man, but God and man in one undivided person by reason of 
His own person, He was no more subject to the Law than He was 
to suffering and death, as He was the Lord of the Law. For this 
reason, His obedience (not only that by which in His entire pas 
sion and death He obeyed the Father, but also that by which, for 
OUT sake, He voluntarily subjected Himself to the Law and ful 
filled it by His obedience) is imputed to us for righteousness, so 
;that because of the entire obedience which, for our sake, Christ 
! rendered His Heavenly Father, both by doing and suffering, God 
[forgives us our sins." Cf. Ill, 57. Intimations of this doctrine 
occur, indeed, already in the writings of earlier theologians, even 
in those of Luther, but before the time of the FORM. CONC. , the 
obedience of Christ was considered mainly with reference to His 
sufferings. Thus MEL. (Loc. c. Th., II, 212): " Since, therefore, 
men did not afford obedience, it was necessary either that they 
should perish as a punishment, or that another one pay the pen 
alty or ransom; therefore by His wonderful and unerring counsel, 
the Son of God, by interceding for us, paid the ransom, and drew 


upon Himself the wrath which we ought to have borne; wherefore, 
God did not abate His Law without a compensation, but preserved 
His justice in demanding punishment. Christ therefore says, I 
am not come to destroy but to fulfil the Law, namely, by wider- 
going punishment for the human race and by teaching and restoring the 
Law in believers." And at the time, and even after the time, of 
Osiander, many divines contented themselves with thus stating it, 
and to the passive added a further obedience only in this sense, 
viz., that the obedience of Christ manifested itself not only in suf 
fering, but also throughout His entire jioly life. Thus GRH. states 
it (VII, 60), who, however, in other passages, expresses himself as 
favoring the active obedience in the sense of the FORM. CQXC.J: 
It remains for us to inquire by what means Christ merited the 
righteousness that avails before God. We reply, from the Scrip 
tures, that the entire obedience of Christ, the active as well as the 
passive, that of His life as well as that of His death, concur in pro 
curing this merit. For, although in many passages of Scripture 
the work of redemption is ascribed to Christ s death and the shed 
ding of His blood, yet this must be received by no means exclu 
sively, as though by it the holy life of Christ were excluded from 
the work of redemption, but it must be regarded as occurring foi 
the reason that nowhere does the fact that the Lord has loved and 
redeemed us, shine forth more clearly than in His passion, death, 
and wounds, as the devout old teachers say; and because the death 
of Christ is, as it were, the last line and completion, the -f/o?, the 
end and perfection of the entire obedience, as the apostle says, Phil. 
2: 8. That it is altogether impossible in this merit to separate the 
active from the passive obedience, is evident, because even in the 
death of Christ the voluntary obedience and the most ardent love 
concur, of which the former respects the Heavenly Father, and the 
latter us men, John 10: 18; Gal. 2; 20." Direct opposition to tfie 
distinction drawn by Osiander was first made among the Lutheran 
theologians by Parsiinoiiius (l.">(;:5), who soon, however, witlidivw 
it_ He said: "The Law binds to either obedience or punishment, 
not both at once. Therefore, because Christ endurecl the punish 
ment for us, He thereby rendered obedience for Himself." Also: 
What He rendered, that we dare not render, and are under no 
obligation to do it. But we must render obedience to the Law. 
Christ, therefore, did not render obedience to the Law for us, but 
for Himself, that He might be an offering unspotted and acceptable 
to God." (Arnold, "Kirchen und Ketzer Geschichte," vol. ii, pt. 
xvi, ch. xxx, 12.) On the part of the Reformed, the chief 
opposition to this doctrine came from John Piscator, in Herborn. 













His arguments are answered at length by Grh. ; _yii ? 70, sqq. : "The 
suffering of penalties alone is not the righteousness of the Law, for 
} then it would follow that the condemned most perfectly fulfill the^ 
Law; since they endure the most exquisite punishments for their 
sins. . . . The passion of Christ would not have profited had. it 
not been combined with most full and perfect obedience to the 
Law. . . . The active obedience alone would not have been suffic- i 
ient, because punishment was to be inflicted for the sins of the. 5 
human race; the passive obedience alone would not have been suf-x 
ficient, because if the sins were to be expiated, perfect obedience to 
each and every precept of the Law was required, i. e. , the passive \ 
obedience had to be that of one who had most fully met every ^\ 
demand of active obedience. . . . Rational creatures not yetvN 
fallen into sin, the Law places under either punishment or obedi-\ <j 



The holy angels it obliges only to obedience, but in no way 4 "fe 
to punishment, Adam, in the state of innocency, it obliges only \ 
. . to obedience, but not at the same time, except conditionally, toy 
&J punishment. For, where there is no transgression, there is nor$ 
punishment. But rational creatures that have fallen into sin, it ^ 
obliges to both punishment and obedience: to obedience, so far as\ 
they are rational creatures; to punishment, because they have fallen^ 
into sin. Thus, since the Fall, Adam and all his posterity are 
under obligation at the same time both of punishment and of obedi- ^ 
ence, because the obligation to obedience is in no way abated by 
fall, but on the other hand, a new obligation has entered, viz., 
L_of the endurance of punishment for sin." 

For the history of the doctrine of the active obedience, see 
//. R. Frank: "The Theology of the Form. Cone.," II, 1861. J. G.. , 
Thomtsius: "The Person and Work of Christ," Part III, Division^ O 
1, second edition. 1863. 

[14] HOLL. (737) : "By the passive obedience, Christ transferred 
to Himself the sins of the whole world (2 Cor. 5:^; Gal. 3: 13), *i^ 
and besides this suffered the punishments due them, by shedding T 
His most . precious blood, and meeting for all sinners the mostV-L 
V ignominious death (Is. 53: 4; 1 et, 2: 24; John 1: 29; Rom. 4:^ J^ 
25; Gal. 1:4; 1 C^r. 15:3: 1 3: 18; Heb. 10: 12; Rom. 6:23;^ 
He.b. 9: 28), in order that, to believers in Christ the Redeemer, 


sins might not be imputed for eternal punishment. To the satis 
factory sufferings of Christ, there are referred (QiiEy. Ill, 253): 
"All the aets of Christ, from the first moment of conception to the > 
three days of His atoning death; as, His lying hid for nine months 
in the womb of the Virgin, His being born in poverty, His living in^ 
constant misery, His bearing hunger, thirst and cold. For He bore < 

< ; 



all these things for us and our sake." Nevertheless, the passive 
obedience is said to consist "especially of death, and the yielding 
up of the spirit." 

iV^ [15] The satisfaction which Christ has made is, therefore, a 
; vicarious satisfaction. HOLL. (737): " To a vicarious penal satis- 

x^y faction, (a) if it be formally regarded, there is required: 1. A 
* surroqatioii, by which some one else is substituted in the place of a 
"debtor, and there is a transfer of the crime, or an imputation of 
>; the charge made against another. 2. A payment of penalties, w r hich 
the substituted bondsman or surety makes in the place of the 
debtor; (6) considered with regard to the end, the payment of the 
si 7 -y penalty^ for obtaining the discharge of the debtor, occurs in such 
I ? jia way that he is declared free from the crime and penalty." The 
kjattacks of the Socinians against the vicarious satisfaction are re- 
N T 

t ij*. . 

.fated by GRH. ( VIT. 1. rvii. c. 1L_ 37. sq. ), and QUEN. (De 

fficio Christ!, pars polemica, qu. 6). The chief objection: "The 


faction of one cannot be the action of another; the fulfilment of] 

i ^ <* 

f vthe Law is an action of Christ; therefore the fulfilment of the Law 
^ cannot lie (Hir action," Hon.. ( 73-1 ) refutes thus: "An artionjs 
V v * * Considered either physim.lly : as it is the motion of one acting, or 
Amorally, as it is good or evil. The action of one can be that of 
another by imputation, not physically^ but morally. 

[The argument of GRH. is: 1. Christ is our mediator, 1 Tim. 2: 
V5: Heb. 8: 6; 9: 15; 12: 24. 2. Our redeemer, Ps, 111: 9; Luke 
68~2: 38; R^m. 3: 24; 1 Cor. 1: 30; Eph. 1: 7; Col. 1: 14; r 
Tim. 2: 6; Heb. 9: 12, 15; 1 Pet. 1: 18; Rev. 5: 9. 3. The 
propitiation for our sins, 1 John 2: 2; 4: 10; Rom. 3: 24, 
25. 4. _By Him we are reconciled to God, Is~63: 3; cf. Rev. 19: 
13; John 1: 17; Rom. 5: 10, 11; 2 Cor 5: 18, 19; Eph. 2: 16; 
2; Col. 1: 20. 5. He gave His life a Mrpnv nal ayri/mrpm* for us, 
KKMatth. 20: 28; Mark 10: 45; 1 Tim. 2: 5, 6, the latter meaning*! ^ \ * 
^^properly an equivalent compensation; and hence the benefit ac-^ v\Y v: l 
^quired is said to be /.vrpuats and airo/.irpuais^ Luke 1: 68; Tit. 2: 14 p 1 
Nl Pet. 1: 18; Heb. 9: 15. 6. He was made sin for us, *2 Cor. 5: 
7. He becamea curse for us, Gal. 3: 13. 

,y21; Rom. 8: 3. 7. He became a curse for us, Gal. 3: 13. 8. He 
c A took upon Himself our sins and their pumshmeiYt, Ps. 69: 4; Is. 
>43: 24, 25; 53: 4,, 6, 8; John 1: 29; 1 Pet. 2: 24" Here belongs 

the scape-goat, Lev. 16: 20, as a type of Christ, John 1: 29. j). 

shed His blood for^nr sins, Matth. 26: 28; 1 John 1: 7; Heb. 9: 13, 

14. 10. He blotted _out the indictment, Col. 2: 14. 11."" 
us from the curse of the Law, Gal. 3: 13; 4: 5. 12. 

of God, 1 Thess. 1: 10. 13. From eternal condemnation, 1 Thess. 

5: 9, 11. 14. ^In Christ we are righteous and beloved, 2 Cor. 5:*5l. 


From the wrath 



- >TI- 






The counter-arguments of the Socinians are then examined: ] 
\ e. g., Against (1) they urge, that Moses was also a mediator. .** 
/* This is conceded. But there is more in the antitype than in the 
x type. The manner in which Christ is said to be mediator is 
v | especially taught in Scripture, 1 Tim. 2: 4, 5, 6; H^b. 9: 15.\ x 
^. Against (2) that redemption means only simple liberation without^ x 
- s an intervening price of satisfaction.. It is conceded that the word 
i c redeem is so used in some passages, but not in those which refer to v 
Y| Christ as our Redeemer, 1 Cor. 6: 20; 1 Pet. 1: 18, 19; Gal. 3: 13* 
Ep_h. 1: 7; Tit. 2: 14; H^b. 9: 12, 15; Rev. 5:9. Against (4). 
that the reconciliation is not of men with God, but of men with 
i. e., of Gentiles with Jews, and of men with angels. 
is conceded that in Eph. 2, the apostle is speaking of the\^ 
antagonism between Jews and Greeks, and in Col. 1, of that be-^ 
^Hween angels and men; but from this it does not follow, that there V 
no reference to the removal of the dissent between men and God Sv 
by Christ s satisfaction, for this is distinctly said, Epji. 2: 16; there- 3 
fore He reconciled the Gentiles not only to the Jews, but also to i 
God Himself, vs. 13, 18, 19. So, according to Col. 1, angels are^ 
reconciled to men, because, through Christ, the human race is^ 
reconciled to God. That we are reconciled to God through Christ, / 
Scripture clearly asserts; but from this, it neither can, nor should, P 
be inferred that God is not reconciled to us through Christ, but L 
rather that the one follows from the other. As we could not be ^ 
reconciled to God, unless God were reconciled to us, the Apostle ^ 
says (Rom. 5: 10): "When we were enemies, we were reconciled { 
to God by the death of His Son," etc. ^ 

Among the general objections of the Socinians. the chief is that ^ 
jj any satisfaction conflicts with the gratuitous remission of sing; as^a ^ 
\ creditor cannot be said to remit a debt gratuitously, for which a ^ N 
jg satisfaction is rendered. GRH. answers that there is no opposition, ^ 
Jbut only a subordination, Rom. 3: 24: Being justified freely by (,, 

[is grace (gratuitous remission) through the redemption that is 
,in Christ Jesus (satisfaction), Epji. 1:7: In whom we have 
redemption through His blood (satisfaction), the forgiveness ofx[\^ 
sins according to the riches of His grace (gratuitous remission). 
P As the grace of God does not destroy the justice of God, so gratui- 
; tous remission does not annul the merit and satisfaction of Christ 
which the Law demands. Nor was God a mere creditor, but also \ 
a most just judge and avenger of sins; nor were sins mere debts, -V 1 
but they conflict with the immutable justice of God revealed in ^ 
the LaAV. In short, the particle freely excludes our worth, ourjs 
our satisfaction; but in no way the satisfaction of Christ.^ 




The mercy of God remitting sins is gratuitous; but not so absolute 
as to exclude the merit of Christ."] 

[16] QUEN. (Ill, 246): The form or formal mode of the satis 
faction consists in the most exact and sufficient payment of all 
those "things which we owed. _. . . Indeed this very payment of 
the entire debt of another, freely undertaken by Christ, and im 
puted to Him in the divine judgment, was sufficient, not merely 
because accepted of God. For in this satisfaction God did not, out 
of liberality, accept anything that was not such in itself, neither, 
in demanding a punishment due us and rendered by a surety, did 
He abate anything; but in this satisfaction Christ bore everything 
that the rigor of His justice demanded, so that He endured even 
the very punishments of hell, although not in hell, nor eternally. 
. . . Therefore the satisfaction of Christ is most sufficient and 
complete by itself, or from its own infinite, intrinsic value, which 
value arises from the facts, (1) that the person making the satisfao- 
tion is infinite God; (2) that the human nature, from the personal 
union, has become participant of divine and infinite majesty, ami 
then-fore its passion and death are regarded and esteemed as of 
such infinite value and price as though they belonged to the divine 
nature._ Acts 20: 28." If men have merited eternal punishment, 
and Christ suffered only for a short time, yet this was nevertheless 
still a sufficient atonement, inasmuch as the sufferings of Christ are 
of infinite value. HUTT. meets the objection of the Photinians 
(Loc. Com., 427) : " That the curse of the Law was eternal death; 
but now, since Christ did not undergo eternal death, therefore He 
has not undergone or borne for us the curse of the Law," by say 
ing: "The reasoning deceives through the sophism of non causa 
pro cmisa. For it is not true, that the merit of Christ is not of in 
finite value, for the reason that Christ met a death that is not eter 
nal ; for, as the sins of our disobedience are actually finite, yet in 
guilt are infinite, since they are committed against the infinite 
justice of God; so the obedience and death of Christ were indeed 
finite in act, so far as they were circumscribed by a period of fixed 
time, namely, the days of humiliation, but they are infinite with 
respect to merit, inasmuch as they proceed from an infinite person, 
namely, from the only begotten Son of God Himself. Secondly, 
it is not unconditionally true, that the curse of the Law is to be 
defined only by eternal death. For if this were true, the Apostle s 
definition of the curse of the Law, by the declaration of Moses: 
Cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree, Deut. 21: 23, would 
have been extremely inaccurate. Then, eternal death is defined 
not only by its perpetual continuance, or the enduring of the tor- 


-C^*^*^^ TT^L- * *uc^* -v^tt-e^^ v n- /t (A- 

j! tures of hell, but also by the feeling of the sorrows of hell, united 
with rejection or desertion by God; so thaThe who even but for a 
moment endures such sorrows, can be said to have experienced ^ ^ fJf \ 
eternal death. Thus Christ, indeed, not for a moment, or a short^ i^f TO 
space of time, but through the entire period of His humiliation, Y ^Vy o 
truly endured the feeling of those sorrows of hell, so that at length jffc *fJ 
He was constrained to exclaim, My God, my God, why hast Thou? ^ | j 
forsaken me T But the reason that He did not suffer death in the ?4 >j \J } 
latter manner is, that He Himself, as an innocent man, by dying } M Vj 
satisfied the Law." HOLL. (742) remarks: " Christ endured a* j 
gunishment equivalent to eternal punishment, inasmuch as He\T 
suffered the punishments of hell intensively as respects their power, v ? 
weight, and substance, although not cjrtt itxitrli/, so far as their dur- v > 
ation and the accidents pertaining to the subject s suffering a"re\) 
concerned; He bore the extremity, but not eternity of tortures". "~ v/J 
[The students of the history of the doctrine of the " Active Obe-T^ 
dience," have occupied themselves too exclusively with polemical* \ 
treatises. In practical works, its formulation is much earlier than | J 
) 1553. It is distinctly taught in the Third Homily of the Church Q 
of England (Cranmer) of 1547, in the Articles for the Reformation!" 
^ of Cologne (Melanchthon and Bucer) of 1543, and the Branden-C^ 
burg-Ntirnberg Articles of 1533. What is especially interesting is, J J^ 
that this earliest document was prepared by Andrew Osiander him-^ j \ 
[k V self, with the assistance of Brentz. Its presentation is as follows: v xj| 

; This Mediator treated thus with God: First, He directed His.J 
* , entire life to the will of the Father; did for us what we were under 
: , j * obligation to do, and yet could not do; and fulfilled the Law and |^ 
v^f^all righteousness for our good, Matt. 5: 17; Gal. 4: 4; 1 Cor. 1:30: j^f 
|^i Phil. 3: 9" (Active). "Second!^ He took upon Himself all our\\ 
| sins, and bore and suffered all that was due us, John 1: 29; Is.. 
>t\ 53: 4-6; Ronj. 8: 32;" Gal. 3: 13 (Passive). 

^p: Nowhere, in the whole range of Lutheran theology, are these 
Vtwo forms of the obedience more sharply discriminated than in 
the above.] 

[17] QUEN. (Ill, 228): tf The real* object for which satisfaction^ 
J was rendered is one thing; the personal object is another. I. The ^ 
\real object comprises (1) all sins whatever, original as well as actual, 
|>a>t as well as future, venial as well as mortal, yea. even the very 
sin against the Holy Ghost, Is. 53: 4 gq\ ; Tit. 2: 14; 1 John 1:7; 

Heb. 1: 3; 1 John 2: 2. (2) All the penalties of our sins, tern- ? 
p_oral as well as eternal, Is. 53: 5; G^l. 3: 13; Rom. 5: 8, 9; Hejx 
2: 14, 15; 1 Cor. 15: 14." 

* In the en.p of pertaining to things. 



/& M^ ~s/< -T*~^*S 

Scripture everywhere /, 


speaks indefinitely when it treats of the satisfaction rendered for sins 
by Christ^ Jojin 1: 29: The sin of the world, /. r., sin under 
stood universally, everything having the nature of sin. 2. Not I, 
only indefinitely but also universally. Is. 53: 6; Rom. 3: 12; Tit. 2: 
14; 1 Jtihn 1:7. 3_. Species of actual sins are specified, Is. 53: 6; 3, 
Rom. 3: 12; Heb. 9: 14. 4. Christ^made satisfaction for every sin ^ 
which the Law accuses and execrates. But the Law accuses and 
execrates all sins, not only original, but also actual, Gal. 3: 13; 
Dejit. 27: 5. 5. Had Christ made satisfaction only for original sin, y 
so that it would be left us to make satisfaction for actual sins, only 
one part of the work of redemption would be left to Christ^ while 
the othet. and that. too. the greater part, would lie transferred to 
men. For Christ s satisfaction would be for but one sin, while men 
would have to render satisfaction for many sins. But Scripture 
ascribes the entire work of redemption to Christ, 1 Tim. 2:5; Is. 
03: 3; Heb. 10: 14. Christ however made full satisfaction not only 
for actual sins, but also for the temporal and eternal punishments 
due our sins: 1. According to the nature of a perpetual relation,/, 
when the guilt is removed, the debt of punishment belonging to 
the guilt is also removed. But Christ took upon Himself our sins, 
Is. 53: 6; John 1: 29; 1 Pet. 2: 24. Therefore, He also transferred 
to Himself the penalty due our sins, and consequently freed us 
l^from the debt of the penalty that was to be paid. 2. Scripture; 
^ emphatically says that the punishment due our sins was imposed 
on Christ, Is. 53:5. 3. All punishments, temporal and eternal, 3. 
corporeal and spiritual, are included under the name curse, Gal. 
3: 13. One punishment of sin is the curse of the Law; but Christ 
hath redeemed us from the curse of the Law. Another punish- 
| ment of sin is the dominion of Satan; but Christ has delivered us 
^from the dominion of Satan, Heb. 2: 14. Another punishment of 
S sin is the wrath of God; but Christ has delivered us from the wrath 
to come, 1 Thess. 1: 10. Another punishment is death; but Christ 
^ has delivered us from death, Hos. 13: 14. Another is hell and 
N eternal damnation ; but Christ has delivered us from hell and 
Jj eternal damnation, Rom. 8:1. 4. God s justice does not allow the ^. 
^ same sin to be punished twice; and He has bruised His most 
beloved Son for our offenses, Is. 53: 4. Therefore He will not 
punish them in those who have b"ecome partakers of the satisfaction 
. rendered by Christ. 5. If we had still to render satisfaction as to y. 
the penalties of sin, the satisfaction of Christ would not yet be per 
fect, the work of redemption would not yet be complete, all things 
would not yet be finished by Him. And yet He cried on the cross, 




It is finished, horn which Heb. 10: 14 infers, etc. Had He made J" 

satisfaction for original sin alone, or for guilt alone, it would be v$ 

/ N^ .s 

better Called T/uMrpuaif than airoAvrpums. ^>S 

J That, by faith, men become partakers of the most perfect satis 
faction rendered by Christ, we prove by the following arguments: 

1. Scripture describes our reconciliation Avith God to be such thatA 
God no longer remembers our sins, J_er. 31: 3-1, but easts them be 
hind our backs, Is. 38: 17, blots them out like a cloud, Is. 44: 22, 

casts them into the depths of the sea, Mic. 7: 19. does not impute, ! 
^ but covers them^ Ps. 32: 1. Therefore He does not hold the recon- 
^s ciled to the reckoning, or exact of them punishments. For were 
God still to punish, He would still impute; were He to avenge, He 
would still remember; were He to account, He could not keep 
covered; were He to examine, He could not cast away; were He to 
inspect, He could not blot out. 

2. The complete forgiveness of sins is inconsistent with a debt of ^ 
satisfaction yet to be rendered for the punishment. That for which ^ 
a satisfaction is still exacted is not yet completely forgiven. No one^ 
would say that a creditor who still demands a satisfaction, had for 
given a debtor. When all the debt is forgiven, the obligation to 
pay even the least part is removed, etc. 

The contrary doctrines are the various opinions of the Scholastics 
and Papists: (a) That " we can make satisfaction for our guilt j 71 ^ 
( l> ) that while " we cannot make satisfaction for our guilt, we can 1 
for the penalty;" (c) that "eternal punishment is, by the power Ms 
of the keys, commuted to temporal punishment, so as to bring itx 
within our ability:" 1 ( / ) that " while c/cnm! guilt and punishment^ 
are remitted, the obligation to some temporal punishment remains." ^* 
Thus Bonaventura: " In sinning, the sinner binds himself to eter- | 
nal punishment. Divine mercy, in justifying, remits all the guilt/j 
and subjection to eternal punishment. But since mercy cannot 
prejudice justice, whose office it is to punish what is wicked, it x 
releases in such a way that he remains under subjection to only a ^ 
<h ^ i^ relatively small amount of temporal punishment." 

In the controversy, the very practical question arose as to how 
fc,y K then we are to regard the temporal afflictions of the justified. 
| These, the Papists argued, were a fulfilment of the obligation o* 



punishment, and thus satisfactions. The Lutherans, especially . 
CHEMNITZ in his Exam en, " De Satisfactione," maintained that^ x 
properly speaking, they were not punishments, but chastisements. ^ 
""What before forgiveness were punishments of sinners, after for-^ 
giveness became the contests and exercises of the justified " (Chrys-p^ 
ostom in GERHARD). GERH. (VI, 319): "The former are indica-x 

r -O^i*^ U^*~TS*^. t 

./ J to 

// j^^fZs 




1 tions, testifying that the person afflicted is under the wrath of God;, 
* the latter proceed not from an enraged, but from a propitious God, 
J? Lam. 3 : 33. The former are testimonies, aye, beginnings of eternal^ 
^ punishment; the latter look towards the reformation and salvation>r 
$ of the godly. Where there is remission of sins, there punishment j ^ ^ 
S properly so called cannot occur; for what else is remission of sins, 
but forgiveness from punishment ? 

II. (QuEN., Ill, 238): " The personal object comprises (not 
. | angels, but) each and every sinful man, without any exception\ 
. whatever. For He suffered and died for all, according to thejj 
^serious and sincere good .pleasure and kind intention of Himself^ 
X^ and God the Father, according to which He truly wills the salva- P , 
Stion of each and every soul, even of those who fail of salvation; 
| not nard 66%av (in appearance), but /car 1 dfyfaiav (in truth, i. e., not | x 
Tin imagination or conjecture, but in very deed, and most truly, ^ 
Sis. 53: 6; Matt. 20: 28; 2 Coj. 5: 14, 15; Heb. 2: 9; 1 Tim. 2: 6;^j 
J John 1: 29; 1 John 2: 1, 2; Rom. 14: 15; 1 Cor. 8: llfHeb. 6: 
^4-6; 2 Pet. 2: l. r 
| On the personal object: 
v GRH., IV, 178: * If the reprobate are condemned because 

do not believe in the Son of God, it follows that to them also the 
^ passion and death of Christ pertain. For, otherwise, they could 
vnot be condemned for their contempt of that which, according to 
v Ithe divine decree, does not pertain to them.* The former is dis- 
YtincSy affirmed, John 3: 18, 36; 16: 9. If Christ had not made 
j satisfaction for the sins of unbelievers, it follows that they are con- 

lemned for the very reason that they are unwilling to believe 
fthat pertains to them, which in truth, and according to God s im- 
\ mutable decree, does not pertain to them. I add also this argu 
i ment : To whomsoever God offers benefits acquired by the 

by an absolute decree. 
that God, has offered 

tpassion and death of Christ, for them also Christ has died. 
j^Car be it from us to ascribe to God such dissembling as though 
? His Word, He would call the unbelieving to repentance and the^ 
t<J kingdom of Christ, whom nevertheless He would exclude there- ^v - 

But both Scripture and experience SJ vv 
and still is offering His Word andpt ^ ^^ 

^ ^Sacraments to some reprobate and condemned, and, in these means, ^V 

also the blessings acquired by the passion and death of Christ 
J He next shows how the Calvinists have attached another sense] 
.ito the Scholastic axiom, which they have adopted: u Christ died 
^sufficiently, but not efficiently ^ for a//." The Scholastics meant by 
j^ this, that Christ potentially saved all, and that the reason that all 

do not partake of His grace must be found in their own guilt, in 



**r i 

not accepting Him by faith. The Calvinists, on the other hand, ^ 
understand by it that Christ s death would not be without the 
v "| power to expiate the sins of all, if it had been destined by God for 
l\ihis end, but that such was not His purpose. 

"The former refer the cause of the inefficiency to the men them- 
i selves; by the latter, it is referred to the decree of God." 

The chief arguments in opposition to the universality of the 
; U satisfaction are recounted : 

^* t 1. "Christ says, that He lays down His life for His sheep, John V, 
J. MO: 15; sanctifies Himself for those given Him of Uis Father," John 
* 17: 19; His blood is given for many. Matt. 26 : 28T~Christ, there-tJ - 
, fore, has died only foi the elect. " But (a} the force of such argu-\ 
>? jj ment is: Christ died for His sheep. Therefore, for His sheep > 
alone. He died for the elect ; therefore, only for the elect, (b) j 
The particular is included in its universal, viz.. that Christ died for 
^1 . all; hence the univesral ought not to be limited by the particular, 
J but the particular extended by its universal. (c)_ The word, 
" many" is frequently used in Scripture for all, P& 97: 1; Dan. 
Kl2: 2; Roin. 5: 19. Hence the argument: "Christ died for many; 
\x and, therefore, not for all," is invalid, (r/) In these passages 
* J "many" must necessarily be understood of the whole multitude 
pof men. This is shown by the opposition in the argument of 
Rom. 5: 19. For all who were rendered sinners by Adam s fall,\ 

>t * 9f I V, ft 

I the benefit of righteousness has been acquired. Cf. Ig. 53: 12 withv^J 
^ v. 6; also Matt, 20: 28, with 1 Tim. 2: 6. (e}_ Scripture speaks in J\ 
accordance with the double relation of Christ s merit, it is uni- > | 
versa!, if considered apart from its application; but its application , \ 
and actual enjoyment is, by man s fault, rendered particular. 

2. "If Christ truly died for all, the effect and fruit of His death j ^ 
must pertain to all" But (a) that alms be received, there must ^ 
be not only a hand to give, but also a hand to take. It is not^^J 
enough that the benefits of Christ, acquired by His death, are J, 
\offered; they must also be received by faith. (7>) This faith God 
^ordinarily enkindles in the heart through the Holy Spirit, workingj 
in Word and Sacraments; but they who repel the Word, and resisr 
^3 the Spirit, are, by their own fault, deprived of the benefits of 
^Christ s death, (c) This is clearly shown from 2 Cor. 5: 18, 19: 
"God hath reconciled us to Himself," etc., i. c., reconciliation has 
been made, viz., with respect to the acquiring of the benefit by 
Christ s death, and yet, v. 18: "God hath given to us the ministry 
of reconciliation;" v. 20: "We pray you, be ye reconciled," i. e., 
reconciliation is still to be made, viz., with respect to its application, 
argument rests on the hypothesis that the death of Christ 


j&t^r^e. /*-^ x X^Z ^ 


does not belong to those who do not partake of its fruit. Were 
then Paul, the thief on the cross, and others, as long as they were 
unbelieving and impenitent, excluded from the number of those 
for whom Christ died ? If this be denied, the universality of the 
proposition falls; if it be affirmed, it follows that in conversion, the 
justified are either without the death of Christ, or that only then 
does Christ die for them, (g) This may be illustrated by an ex 
ample: A hundred Christian captives are in bondage to the Turkish 
Emperor. A Christian prince pays a certain sum for the ransom 
of all. If any afterwards prefer to remain longer in captivity 
rather than enjoy the liberty acquired and offered them, they 
should ascribe this to themselves. For the universality of the 
ransom is not thereby invalidated. 

3. " Christ ma^e no satisfaction for those for whom He does 
not pray. But for the reprobate He does not firav. John 17: 9." 
But, while it is true, that the satisfaction of Christ is not for those, 
for whom He absolutely does not pray, this cannot be said of the 
reprobate, Is. 53: 12; Luke 23: 34. A distinction must be drawn 
between the general and the special intercession; also between the 
office of Christ, as a priest and as a prophet: as a priest, praying 
for all, when on the altar of the cross He offered His body as a 
sacrifice for the sins of the whole world; but as a prophet, pro 
claiming that sins are retained against sinners impenitent and 

4. "That for which there could have been no use, we must jiot 
believe to have been done by God. "But there would be no use of 
a universal merit, since some of the reprobate for whom Christ 
would ~have then suffered were already in hell." With equal 
reason we could conclude that Christ did not suffer for Abraham, 
Isaac, hnft the other saints of the Old Testament, since they had 
already attained that which is said to come through Christ s pas 
sion. We should rather say, according to Rev. 13: 8, that the 
Lamb of God was slain from the foundation of the world, viz., with 
respect to the divine decree, the promise, the types in the sacri 
fices, and the efficacy; and that the fruit of Christ s passion is not 
to be restricted to the moment of time in which it occurred, but 
extended to both past and future, whence the ancients said that 
"Christ s passion was before it was." We, therefore, are right in 
saying that Christ suffered and died also for those who, while He 
was suffering, were in hell; not as though Christ, by His suffering, 
would liberate them from hell, but because while they were still 
living, the promises concerning the Messiah ought to have been 
embraced, and the merits of His passion thus received, as patri- 

^ c*f atsat^^i4*>t~ ai-^-r-i^f 

-* -c&/4u~ *S n 






/ v 

archs, prophets, and the rest of the godly under the Old Testament, 
were saved by faith in Christ. 

r [18] QUEN. (Ill, 253): " Satisfaction is an act of the sacerdotal 
/office of Christ, the God-man, according to which, from the eternal 
/decree of the triune God, out of His immense mercy, He cheerfully 
and voluntarily substituted Himself as the bondsman and surety 
for the entire human race, w r hich, through sin, had been cast into 
(incredible misery; and, having taken upon Himself each and every 
sin of the entire world, by His most perfect obedience and the 
suffering, in their place, of the penalties that men had merited, 
made satisfaction, on this earth, during the w r hole time of 
humiliation, and especially in His last agony, to the Holy Trinity\3 N* 
that had been most grievously offended; and, by thus making 
satisfaction, acquired and earned for each and every man the re 
mission of all sins, exemption from all penalties, grace and peace 
with God, eternal righteousness and salvation." ^> 

[!!)] Concerning the relation of satisfaction and merit, HOLL. X 
(736): " (1) Satisfaction precedes, merit follows; for Christ has | 
merited righteousness and life eternal by rendering a satisfaction, x 
(2) Satisfaction is made to Cod and His justice: but Chri>t has ; 
merited salvation, not for God. but for us. (I!) Merit precedes 
the payment of a price; satisfaction, the "compensating of an 
injury. Therefore, by His satisfaction, Christ made a compensa 
tion for the injury offered to God, expiated iniquity, paid the debt, 
and freed us from eternal penalties; but, by His merit, He ac 
quired for us eternal righteousness and salvation. (4) The satis- 
v jaction rendered by Christ is the payment of our debts^by which | 
we were under obligations to God; but merit arises from the fulfil- ^ 
ment of the Law and the suffering that is not due." The entire | , 
obedience which Christ rendered avails for us, and Christ did not s 
need to merit anything for His own person. This the Dogmaticians 
express in the following manner: "Christ, as a man, merited 
nothing for Himself by His obedience; because, through the per- ^ 
sonal union, Christ was given all the fulness of the Godhead (Col. ^ \ 
2:9), and was anointed with the oil of joy (the gifts of the Holy\ c 
Ghost) above His fellows (Pg, 45: 7). Therefore, it Avas not neces-M | 
sary that He should merit anything for Himself. (HoLL. (749) ). 
[20] CONF. AUG. (XXI, 2): "Tin- Scripture propounded unto 
us one Christ, the mediator, propitiator^ TnghTpriest, and ..mterces- 
s< r. Ar. CoNF-Tm, 44) :" Christ who sitteth at the Right Hand 
of the Father, and perpetually maketh intercession for us." 

QUEN. (Ill, 264): "Of this priestly act in the type, we may 
read in L^y.. 16: 17, 18; Ex. 28: 29, 3.5. Christ, the God-man, is 

c^& ^"^ J ^~ INTERCESSION.^ 



our only intercessor, 1 Tim. 2: 5." (257): "The ground of this 
intercession is the satisfaction and universal merit of the interceder 
Himself; for by and through His bloody satisfaction, or, by the 
virtue of His merit, Christ, as a priest, intercedes for us with God 
the Father. A more specific explanation of intercession is given 
in the following (ib. ) : "By the virtue of His merit, Christ truly 
and formally intercedes for all men, not indeed by acquiring anew 
for them grace and divine favor, but only according to the mode of 
His present state, which .is that of exaltation, by seeking that the 
acquired blessing may be applied to them for righteousness and 
salvation." GRH. : Intercession is nothing else than the applica- 
tion and continual "force, as it were, of redemption, perpetually 
winning favor with 

[21] QUEN. (Ill, 256): " He does not indeed intercede for those 

who, having died in impenitence, arc in hell, sutt ering eternal pun- 
ishments (for He is not their intercessor, but the judge condemn 
ing and punishing them), but in general for all those who still live 
in the world, and still have the gate of divine grace standing open 
before them, whether they be elect or reprobate. For He inter 
ceded for the transgressors, or His crucifiers, Is. 53: 12; Luke 23: 
34." HOLL. (750): " How He prays for the elect, we read, John 
17: 11. From which is inferred that Christ intercedes for the re 
generate and elect, that they may be preserved from evil, be kept 
in the unity of faith, and be sanctified more and more by the Word 
of truth." QUEN. (Ill, 257): "It is evident that Christ justly 
does not ask the peculiar blessings that have been recounted, the 
actual, saving enjoyment of which belongs to the faithful and godly 
alone, for the ungrateful, wicked, and refractory world, in so far as 
it is and remains such, since it is incapable of these. These special 
blessings, Christ has not sought for such a world, by no means out 
of any absolute hatred against it, ... but because of its wicked 
ness, ingratitude, and contumacy. . . . The Saviour, therefore, in 
His prayers, does not commend to the Father the inflexible de- 
spisers and violent persecutors of the Gospel, but His own beloved 
disciples who received His Word; yet that this does not absolutely 
exclude the world either from His satisfaction or from His inter 
cession, is evident from John 17: 21." 

[22] HOLL. (749): The intercession of Christ fc not merely 
interpretative through the exhibition of His merits" ( " as though 
Christ interceded for us not by prayers, but by His merit alone, and 
its eternal efficacy " (QuEN. Ill, 257)) ; "for the word, evnyxaveiv, 
Rom. 8: 34; Heb. 7: 25, employed concerning the intercession of 
Christ, means more than the real yet silent presentation of merits. 

i*rtf- asrK *f xj^rz 
*& t^i a^r-c -t-e. 

. . . Therefore, the intercession of Christ is not only rm/, but also 
vocal and oral ; not abject by submission ( " as though Christ, as 
a suppliant, with bent knees and outstretched hands, and a vocal 
lamentation, should entreat the Father as in the days of His flesh, 
for such an entreaty conflicts with Christ s glorious state; therefore 
we must regard it in a manner becoming God (John 17: 24), and 
not after the manner of the flesh or of a servant " (QuEN. Ill, 257), 
but is expiatory and effectual for obtaining saving blessings for men 
(because whatever He asks of His Father is pleasing and agreeable 
to the Father, Jo_hn 11: 22). The intercession of Christ is effectual 
to obtain for us salvation, although those who do not believe in 
Christ do not enjoy the effect. Hence, it is said to be effectual, Hy 
reason of the saving intention of Christ, and not by reason of the 
result in the unbelieving and wicked." But BR. observes, in re 
gard to the verbal intercession (498): " Whether this intercession 
be verbal, consisting in words and prayers presented either men 
tally or vocally, or whether it be only real, consisting in this, that, 
by the virtue of His merit and satisfaction formerly rendered, and 
of His prayers formerly made, Christ moves God to remit our sins, 
it is not necessary to determine." [QUEN. (Ill, 271) : Elegantly 
has St. Augustine, on Ps. 85, said; He prays for us, as our Priest; 
He prays in us, as our Head ; He is prayed to by us,_asjour God. 
Let us, then, recognize our voices in Him, and His voices in us. "3 

[23] QUEN. (Ill, 258): "This intercession will not be termin- 
atedjby the eiid of the world, but will continue to all eternity, Heb. 
7: 25; Ps. 110: 4; Heb. 5: 6; J: 17. For it must not be thought 
that after the end of the world, when the elect have passed into life 
eternal, intercession is superfluous; for He prays and intercedes, 
not that they may not by sin fall from eternal salvation, but that 
they may be kept in glory, which, as it must be regarded as having 
been received for merit, must also be regarded as having been re 
ceived for Christ s meritorious intercession. 

As, in Rum. 8: 26, mention is made of an intercession by the 
Holy Spirit also, some of the Dogmaticians inquire what is to be 
understood by this, and how it differs from the intercession that is 
offered by Christ. QUEN. (Ill, 259): "Some receive iVepevn^dvew 
by metalepsis and with respect to the result, so that He is said to 
pray and groan, because He causes us to pray and groan, shows 
and teaches us for what to pray and how to pray aright, and forms 
our prayers within us. But others also understand it literally as 
referring to the very person of the Holy Ghost, viz., that the Holy 
Ghost Himself, in His own person, prays and intercedes for us." 
QUEX. decides for the former interpretation. Arid he thus states 

rVT&mtn^ n-t. 

i. //_*- 

the difference between the two kinds of intercession : The one in 
tercession (that of Christ) is Oeavdpu^iK^ [that of the God-man] ; the 
$ other is purely 0eu$ [divine] . The one is mediatorial; the other is 
M^ not. The intercession of Christ is founded upon His suffering and 
death, which cannot be said of the intercession of the Holy Ghost " 
T (Ib. 260). 

[24] HOLL. (751): Redemption is not simple, absolute, and 
* metaphorical, but precious, satisfactory, and literal, 1 Cor. 6: 19, 20; 
1 Pet. 1: 18; Matt 20: 28; 1 Tim. 2: 6." Id. (752): "The for- 
^ mer is liberation without any intervening price, from a penalty 
^ that has been decided; the latter is that by which a guilty person 
is redeemed from his crime and the punishment, by the payment 
of a price. . . . For, properly speaking, to redeem signifies to buy 
again, just as the Greek words /ivrpow, d-yopd&iv, ^a-yopd^eiv, and the 
Hebrew words, JT1B, ^NJ, denote purchase or repurchase, which 
occurs through an intervening price. Therefore, when, in the 
present argument, where we treat of the redemption of the fallen 
human race accomplished by Christ, these Hebrew and Greek 
words from the holy volume are employed, we receive them in a 
literal sense, because no necessity appears to be imposed upon us 
of departing from the literal sense." 

The expressions used in Holy Scripture to denote^ redemption 
are (a) in the Old Testament H^jl, Lev. 25: 24, 26729731, 32,] 
48, 51, 52; [V^S, Ex. 21: 30; Ps. 49: 8; (6) in the New Testa- 
Luke 1: 68; 2: 38; Heb. 9: 12; AmMn-puoit, Luke 21: 

28; Rom. 3: 24; 8: 23; 1 Cor. 1: 30; Eph. 1: 7, 14; 4: 30; Col. 1: 
14; Heb. 9: 15; 11: 35; d Y 6 P am^ 2 Pet. 2: 1; Rev. 5: 9; 14: 3;^ 

et-aydpaatg, Gal. 3: 13; 4: 5. 

[25] The Dogmaticians KG. , QUEN. , and HOLL. . treat still more 
fully of redemption, distinguishing (1) the captive (the whole 
human race). (2) The one holding the captive (God. Rum. 11: 
32; Gal 3: 22, to whom the ransom must be paid; and the devil 
who holds the wicked in the snares of sins, 2 Tim. 2 : 26, to whom 
not a price, but punishment is due). (3) The one redeeming the 
captive (Christ, the only and the universal Redeemer of the whole 
human race, availing by the right, strength, and will to redeem, 
Rom. 3: 24). (4) The chains from which Christ redeemed the 
human race (sins, offences against God, and temporal and eternal 
punishments). (5) The means of redemption. (6) The end of 
redemption (the final end, the glory of God; the intermediate, 
freedom from the guilt and dominion of sin). As, however, all 
the matters discussed under these heads have been included in the 
previous discussion, their further citations could be dispensed 



with, and their presentation by the Dogmaticians above named is to 
be regarded as a mere recapitulation of what had been given before. 

37. The Regal Office. 

To Him, who announces to the world God s gracious pur 
pose of redemption, and who Himself accomplishes the redemp 
tion, the dominion over the world is committed ; aiid, in 
exercising this dominion, He performs a regal function. This 
regal dignity belongs to Christ, as God, from eternity ; but from 
the moment of His incarnation His humanity also participated 
in it. [1] Yet, as long as He tarried here upon earth, He did 
not exercise this regal dominion in its full extent j but rather, 
as long as He was in the state of humiliation, refrained, for 
the most part, from its use and exercise, and not until the 
time of His exaltation did He enter upon the complete exercise 
of this, His regal dominion. [2] Inasmuch as Christ is thus 
King and Lord of the world, His dominion extends over every 
thing that is in the world and belongs to it ; and there apper 
tains to Him not only the preservation and government of the 
world in general, but also the preservation and government of 
the Church in particular. At the same time, this His domin 
ion extends not only over the present, but equally also over 
the future world. This kingdom of Christ is, in itself, only 
one, and embraces the whole world, the present and the future, 
with all that it contains. Yet this one kingdom can also be 
distinguished as a threefold one, in the same sense in which 
we distinguish at present the world and the Church, and in 
which we distinguish the citizens of this and of the future life, 
of heaven and of earth. Accordingly, the world and the 
Church, in this life, are regarded as each a special kingdom, 
over which Christ rules ; and those who are in the life to come 
constitute the third kingdom. This threefold kingdom is 
designated as the kingdom of power, of grace, and of glory. 
The first is called the Kingdom of Power, because it is the king 
dom in which Christ exercises His divine power by governing 
and upholding the world ; the second is called t\\z Kingdom of 
Grace, because in this Christ operates through His saving grace ; 
the third is called the Kingdom of Glory, because He therein 
unfolds, in all its perfection, His divine glory before the eyes 
of all who are there assembled. [3] 

^t-- -~- - _~~. 


The regal office is accordingly defined as, " The theanthropic 
function of Christ, whereby He divinely controls and governs^ 
according to both natures, the divine and the human (and the 
latter, as exalted to the Right Hand of Majesty), all creatures 
whatever, in the kingdom of power, grace, and glory, by infi 
nite majesty and power : as to the divinity, by virtue of eter 
nal generation ; as to the assumed humanity, by virtue of the 
personal union belonging to Him." (QUEN., III. 264.) [4] 

Tojthe Kingdom of Power (" in which Christ powerfully rules 
over this universe, and upholds it and providentially governs 
it ") belong all creatures in the world, visible and invisible ; 
[5] Christ s dominion extends over them all, and all must be 
subject unto Him. By Him everything is upheld and gov 
erned. [6] 

To the Kingdom o/ Grace ("in which Christ collects the Church 
Militant upon earth, governs it, furnishes it with spiritual 
gifts, preserves and defends it, to the praise of the divine name, 
to the destruction of Satan s kingdom, and the salvation of be- 
lieyers/ Jer. 23: 5 ; 33: 15 ; Zech. 9: 9 ; HOLL., 763) belong 
those who believe in Christ, the members of His Church. To 
enlarge this Church, and to bestow upon its members all the 
blessings of the Gospel, is the regal function which Christ ex 
ercises in this kingdom, [7] and the Word and Sacraments 
are the means which He uses for that purpose. [8] This 
kingdom will, it is true, come to an end^ in this world, but only 
by passing over into the kingdom of glory. [9] 

To the Kingdom of Glory, finally ("in which Christ most 
gloriously rules the Church Triumphant in heaven, and fills it 
with eternal felicity, to the praise of the divine name and the 
eternal refreshment of the saved," Matt. 25: 34 ; John 17: 24 ; 
HOLL., 763), belong all the inhabitants of heaven, the good 
angels and redeemed men_. They behold the Lord in His 
glory, as He shows Himself to the dead, when He awakens 
them to life. [10] This glory of the Lord begins with the 
time of His ascension to heaven, but will not be perfectly un 
folded until, after the final judgment^believers also will enter 
into the kingdom of His glory, to share with Him its posses- 
sion._ Matt. 25: 34. [11] 

[1] QUEN. (Ill, 260): "Just as Christ, in His prophetic and 


/1 1-C^> e***-<y/ 

f f 

sacerdotal offices, acts and works according to both natures, so also, 
according to both natures, in this regal office He acts and peforms . 
His part; for He rules over all creatures, not only as God, accord- 
ing to His divinity, but also as man, according to His exalted \ 
humanity. The Holy Scriptures speak of a regal dignity in Pg. 
2: 6; 20: 9; 45: 1, 3, 5; 4J: 7; Heb. 2: 7, 8; Ps. 8: 6; 97: 5; 2 Sam. 
23: 3; 1 Tim. 6: 15; Rev. 17: 14; 19: 16. 

QUEN. further remarks (III, 261): "One in number is that regal 
power which Christ, according to His divine nature, has, and ac 
cording to His human nature, possesses. Only the mode of having 
it varies; for what, according to His divinity, He has by eternal 
generation from eternity, that, according to His humanity, through 
and because of the personal union, He has received in time, and 
fully exercises now in the state of exaltation. His power to rule, 
even according to His human nature, is evident from Ps. 8:6; Jer. 
23: 5; John 17: 5. 

[2] HOLL. (764): " Christ immediately, in His very conception 
x was anointed to a regal dignity, and, during His visible intercourse 
upon the earth, possessed the power to rule, and sometimes exer-^ 
cised it according to His pleasure. .But^ in the state of humilia 
tion. He voluntarily refrained^ from the most Jull andjuninterrupted { 
y$ , employment of His rule." Christ, therefore, "during that time in" 
which He visibly dwelt on this earth, was a true King. Luke 2: 
11; 19: 35; Mark 14: 61. There is an antithesis of the Socinians, 
who say that Christ, before His resurrection, was not . actually a ^ 
King; although they do not deny that, before His death, He was^* 
^described as a King." (HOLL., 764.) QUEN. (Ill, 264): "A dis- | 
^motion must, therefore, be made here between the appointment to.* 
this regal office and the refraining from the full administration and^ 

of the same. Christ, as man, was King and Lord even in tin 
^yvumb (Lu^e 1: 43), in the manger (Luke 2: 11), in bonds (JohnV 
\Jl8: 37), on the cross (Luke 23: 42); and yet did not actually ex- Jj 
Vercise that dominion." That Christ also possessed regal power r^ 

V V ^5 fthe state of humiliation, the Dogmaticians regard 
" rforming nuraclesT 

prnvftfl hy 

zr ~ 

[3] HUTT. and HFRFFR. still account, as belonging to the 
^office, only His dominion over believers; and GRII. , who was con- / 
temporaneous with them, was the first to include under the regal ^ 
office all the relations in which Christ is Lord and King, and in . 
this they were imitated by all the later Dogmaticians. Of course, 
no doctrinal difference was hereby intended. The faith of the 
Church always was, that Christ was Lord and King of the world. 
Thus we have it stated, e. #., by CHMN. (De duab. naturis, 205): 







__ , 

f^**S fil^-t^-OstS &-~*~- T ^^Sfc**** --n-cr/ ^ y /c ^*-f~ /~>3u*i. ,*-ffc/U---_t-uv<{7 


"Scripture clearly affirms that to Christ, even according to His 
humanity, as Lord, all things have been made subject, not only in 
the Church, but all things in general; . . . -and distinct and express 
mention is made of the beasts of the field, the fowls of the air, the 
fish of the sea, and all the works of God s hands, whether they be 
in heaven, or on earth, or under the earth, even of the enemies of 
Christ, and, therefore, the devil and death itself, as being in this 
subjection." The difference is only this, that_GRH^was the first 
tojntroduce the method of arranging under one head all that is to 
be said concerning the dominion of Christ. 

As to the division itself. GRH. (Ill, 578): "The kingdom of 
Christ is considered either in this or in the future life. In this life, 
iiis called the kingdom of power or grace; ... in the life to come, 
it is _called the kingdom of glory." BR. (498): * The regal office 
of Christ is threefold, according to the diverse nature of those whom 
He regards as His subjects, and governs diversely. For although, 
if you regard the words themselves, the kingdom of grace, as well 
as that of glory, may seem to be comprised under the kingdom of 
power, as both truly depend upon divine power imparted to the 
human nature of Christ, yet the usus loquendi requires it to be 
named the kingdom of grace, with respect to the spiritual blessings 
which are conferred in this world, and the kingdom of glory, with 
respect to the glory of the future world ; while the kingdom of power 
signifies a universal government." QUEN. (Ill, 264): "Some say 
that Christ reigns in the world by power, in the Church by grace, 
in heaven by glory, and in hell by justice." In regard to the last, 
HOLL. observes (763): "You say, that also a fourth kingdom of 
Christ is mentioned, viz. , the kingdom of justice over the wicked 
angels and condemned men. Reply: We refer the kingdom ^of 
justice to the kingdom of power." On the other hand, BR. (501): 
"Some, referring both (the kingdom of glory and the kingdom of 
justice) to the same kingdom of glory, say that the glorifying of 
the elect belongs by itself to the former; but the condemnation of 
the wicked . . . they refer to the latter in the manner in which 
under other circumstances opposites -are wont to be referred to the 
same faculty." 

The threefold division is, accordingly, not to be understood as if 
there were three separate kingdoms over which Christ rules, but 
the reason of the division lies (1) partly in the different divine 
influences which Christ exerts. The same persons \vlio are in the 
kingdom of grace are also in the kingdom of power; but in the one 
kingdom the divine saving grace, and in the other the divine power, 
is exercised; (2) partly in the difference of the places in which they 
,_ >w^ 


arc found, over which Christ rules a viz., in the one case upon earth, 
and in the other in heaven. 

QUEN. (Ill, 264): "The kingdom of grace includes, or rather 
presupposes, the kingdom of power; for the kingdom of power ig( 
required for the kingdom of grace, or the Church, which in this 
world is to be established, ruled, etc., through the ministry of the 
Spirit by means of the Word and Sacraments. 

[4] GRH. (Ill, 578): The regaloffice is that according to which 
Christ as the God-man governs all things in heaven and earth, and 
especially protects His Church against enemies. On the other 
hand, HFRFFR. (353) (see note 3): "The regal office is that ac- J^ 
cording to which, to the end of the world, through the ministry of ^ 
^ ( the Word, He collects His citizens, and, having furnished thern^V 
with eminent gifts, vigorously defends them against enemies (in 
rtiose midst He rules), and at length crowns them with eternal 
glory and honor." 

[5] QUEN. (Ill, 265): "The object or matter with which this,; 
government is occupied comprises all the works of God in general, 
creatures, visible, invisible, corporeal, incorporeal, animate, 

8; 1 Cor. 15: 27, 28; 


u inanimate, rational, irrational. Ps. 8:6, 
Heb. 2: 7, 8; Erjh. 1: 21, 22;" 1 Pet. 3: 22." 

[6] GRH. (Ill, 578): "The kingdom of power is the general 
dominion over all things, or the governing of heaven and earth, 
| Ps. 8: 6; Dan. 7: 14; Matt. 28: 18; Ep_h. 1: 21; the subjugation of 
\alj creatures, 1 Cor. 15:^27; Ep_h. 1: 20; H,eb. 2: 8; dominion in 
^ the midst of His enemies, whom He suppresses, restrains, and 
Ps. 2: 9;HO: 2; 1 Cor. 15: 25." " f 

[7] HOLL. (763): "The subjects, in this kingdom of grace, are 
x all lielievinir men. who constitute the Church Militant. Tin 1 r<-<jnl_ 
\ acts are the collecting, governing, adorning, and preservation of the 
* Church, His defense of it against the enemies of grace, and His" 
ruling in their midst. John 3: 5; 17: 17; Erjh. 5: 26; T& 3: 5; .. 
^ Majt. 28: 20." When QUEN. (Ill, 268), on the other hand, says: 
V The object of the kingdom of grace, according to the antecedent 1 1 
| will, comprises all mefo unhrrfHiIIy, but the godly and believing! 1 
^ especially, he means to say only that participation in the bless-^s** 
icings of the Church is intended for, and sincerely offered to all men,^ j 
"and, therefore, does not contradict the statement of HOLL. 

f [S] QUEN. (Ill, 267): "The Word and Sacramento are the: 

( , 



came, for it pleased the King in Zion, Ps. 2:6, to act jjj 

here ordinarily in no other way than I>y the Word and Sacraments, S 
and by these means to collect, increase, and preserve on this earth^ .^ $ 
a Church for Himself. Matt. 4: 23; 9.: 35; 24: 14." 

[9] QUEN. (Ill, 270): "The end of the world will indeed _jer- 
minate the mode of the kingdom of grace, but not the essence of 
the kingdom. That which is said in 1 Cor. 15: 24, concerning the 
giving up of this kingdom, is to be understood, not as applying to 
the government itself, but only to the mode of governing, and the 
form and quality of the government; because Christ will govern no 
longer through means, namely, through the Word and Sacraments, 
through the cross and among enemies, but, all enemies being put 
down, the last enemy, viz., death, being destroyed, and the wicked 
being cast into hell, He will deliver the kingdom to God the 

, ^ Father, i. e. , He will hand over the captive enemies and establish , 
* LJ the elect, among whom He holds His spiritual kingdom. There- | v 

.\ x^ fore there will be a triumphal handing over of subjugated enemies, n I N 

I iy v \X nrtf] n nrpspntfitinn of libprntod bplipvprs Bv this flf*t, of hnndiiiorV 

I (I X N and a presentation of liberated believers. By this act of handing^ 
x " \ over, Christ will not lay aside the administration of His spiritual ^[ S I 
( ^j f and heavenly kingdom, but will then only enter upon another,* i 
^ | mode of ruling." QUEN. then quotes approvingly Dorschaeus: o 

1 \V? ^ "This handing over will be not act us depositionify aedpropo8Jtioni8.\l\i 

2 Ki | -Christ will not, at the consummation, lay down the kingdom, ^ K * 
\ V i ^Jwhich? up to the consummation, He has governed in grace and in ^ 

Oy Aglory; but He will present it to God the Father for His inspection x ^v 
v \and glory. Just as a general, after having destroyed all his^ 
Jenemies, presents to the king, who through him has waged the^ 
war, the victorious and triumphant army, the saved citizens, and | 

free people, and tenders them to him, that he may judge and 
pprove his deeds, and nevertheless does not lay down the power 
which he had over the army; so, much more, when the world is 
ended, and all enemies have been suppressed, shall Christ, as the 
x I A jSon, place His immaculate ( Eph. 5: 27) eccle siastical army in theN 
^presence of God the Father, before His tribunal, Rom. 14: 10, andjjj 
v5 v v^shall say: These are they who are not defiled, who have followed <? 
$ pie, the Lamb, whithersoever I have gone, who are the first fruits 
Thee, God, the Father, and to me the Lamb, Rev. 14: 4. " 
[10] HOLL. (763): * The subjects in this kingdom of glory aje^ 
th good angels and glorified men^ (who in faith continue in the i 
kingdom of grace to the end. Matt. 24: 13; Rev. 2: 10). The A 
regal acts are: the raising to life of the believing dead, their solemn , 
introduction into life jternal, Matt. 25: 34; Luke 22: 29, 30 v and ] 
Vthe most happy and glorious rule over them . 
jj: [11] QUEN. (Ill, 273): "Christ, the king of glory, indeed, even 
as a man, immediately from His first conception, was the possessor 
,of all glory, but did not actually rule gloriously until after Bis ex- oj v 
Itation, when His sufferings were finished. This very ^ingdom 

NM itv 

3? Jjo 

/ ,s*, 7i>/M^- jr ~ <- >/~3C^<tf-^C *"> A_x^fv-t C*v N e t-w 


of glory will truly receive its final completion in the general resur 
rection of the dead, the assembling of all of the elect, jind their 
translation to the possession of the heavenly inheritance, 
thence will endure to eternity. 


V . 


As the work of redemption, for whose accomplishment the 
became man, could be brought about only through suffer 
ing and death, it is altogether natural that we should see 
Christ, through all His earthly life, even until the completion 
of His work of redemption, j^oing about in the form of a ser 
vant, subject to all the weaknesses and infirmities of human 
nature, l^ot until after His resurrection did He lay aside the 
form of a servant and appear in divine glory. Accordingly, 
from the time of the incarnation of Christ, we have to predi- 
catc of Him a two-fold condition, that of the form of a servant 
and that of glory. Inasmuch, however, as in consequence of 
the communicatio idiomatum, resulting from thenmo personalia, 
the human nature participated in all the attributes and glory 
of the divine nature ; and, inas