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according to the purpose of him who worketh all things after the counsel of his own will.' E. ven the most free Acts of the Creature, and the moft cafual Things, are foreordained of God: Prov. xxi. 1. The king's heart is in the hand of the Lord, as the rivers of water: he turneth it whitherfoever he will, Chap. xvi. 33. The lot is caft into the lap: but the whole difpofing thereof is of the Lord.' Yea, evil Actions, as well as good ones, fall within the Compass of his Decree : Acts ii. 23. Him, being delivered by the determinate counsel and foreknowledge of God, ye have taken, and by wicked hands have cruci. 'fied and flain' But with this Difference, that he decreed bis effecting of Good, and his permitting of Ill. Now, whatsoever God hath foreordained, infallibly comes to pafs. And his Decrees are unchangeable I. xlvi. 10. 'Declaring the end from
the beginning, and from ancient times the things that are not yet done, faying, My counsel fhall • ftand, and I will do all my pleafuie.'. Yet Men have no Excufe for their Sin, from the Decree of God, Acts ii. 23. above cited: For they fin out of free Choice, without the leaft Knowledge of, or Force upon them from the Decree: Acts xiii. 27. For they that dwell at Jerufalem, and their · rulers, because they knew him not, nor yet the voices of the prophets which are read every fabbath-day, they have fulfilled them in con'demning him.' The Defign and End of God's Decrees is his own Glory: Rom. xi. 36. For of him, and through him, and to him, are all things: to whom be glory for ever:' And therefore he will certainly get Glory of whatfoever comes to pafs, I. xlvi. 1o. forecited. As to finful Actions,
he will get either the Glory of his Mercy in pardoning of them, or else the Glory of his Juftice in punishing of them. For the Date of God's Decrees, they are all eternal: And he makes no new Decrees in Time : Acts xv. 18. 'Known unto God are all his works from the beginning of the world." The Way he decreed all Things, is according to the counsel of his own will, Eph. i. 11. His Decrees are faid to be according to his own counfel, as being all laid in the Depth of Wisdom, which among Men is the Refult of Counsel: Rom. xi. 33. O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom ' and knowledge of God! how unfearchable are his judgments, and his ways paft finding out!" But taking Counsel, even in himself, is not competent to God in a proper Sense: because his infinite Understanding comprehends all Things per fectly at once. They are faid to be according to the counfel of his will, as depending on nothing without himself: Rom. xi. 34. For who hath "known the mind of the Lord, or who hath been his counseller?'
Queft. 8. How doth God execute his Decrees?
Anf. God executeth his Decrees in the Works of Creation and Providence.
God's executing his Decrees, means his bringing to pass what he hath decreed: And he does that in the Works of Creation and Providence. And nothing falls out in either of them, but what was
decreed; nor otherwife than as it was decreed: Eph. i. 11. In whom alfo we have obtained an inheri
tance, being predeftinated according to the purpose ' of him who worketh all things after the counsel ' of his own will.' Zech. vi. 1. "And I turned, and lift up mine eyes, and looked, and behold, there came four chariots out from between two 'mountains, and the mountains were mountains ' of brass.'
Queft. 9. What is the Work of Crea
Anf. The Work of Creation is, God's making all Things of Nothing, by the Word of his Power, in the Space of fix Days, and all very good.
The World was not eternal, but had a Begin ning, Gen. i. 1. It will alfo have an End: And it will end by Fire, being burnt up, 2 Pet. iii. 10.; and that in Virtue of the Curfe lying on it for Man's Sin: Gen. iii. 17. And unto Adam he said,
Because thou haft hearkened unto the voice of " thy wife, and haft eaten of the tree of which I 'commanded thee, faying, Thou shalt not eat of
it: curfed is the ground for thy fake; in forrow 'fhalt thou eat of it all the days of thy life.' God. the Father, Son, and Holy Ghoft, made the World: 1 Cor. viii. 6. But to us there is but one God, the Father, of whom are all things, and we in ' him; and one Lord Jefus Chrift, by whom are
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all things, and we by him.' John i. 3. All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made. Pfal. xxxiii.
By the word of the Lord were the heavens made: and all the host of them by the breath of his mouth.' He made it in the Beginning of Time, but a few thousand Years ago: Gen. i. 1. In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. He then made all Things: And there was no Perfon, nor any thing before that, but God himself: Col. i. 16. For by him were all things created that are in heaven, and that are in earth, vifible and invifible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers all things were created by him, and for him.' So he made them of nothing; and that by the Word of his Power, commanding them to be: Heb. xi. 3. Through faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God; fo that things which are feen, were not 'made of things which do appear.' Now, all Things were made in the Space of fix Days: Exod. XX. II. For in fix days the Lord made heaven
and earth, the fea, and all that in them is.' The Works of the firft Day were, the highest Heavens, Gen. i. 1. with the Angels, the Inhabitants thereof, Job xxxviii. 4. 7.; the shapeless Mafs of Earth and Water, and the Light. The Works of the fecond Day were, the Firmament, and the dividing thereby the upper and lower Waters. The Works of the third Day were, the Seas, and the dry Land, Herbs, and Trees. The Works of the fourth Day were, the Sun, Moon, and Stars. The Works of the fifth Day were, Fish, and Fowl. The Works of the fixth Day were, firft, the Beafts
of the Earth; and then, laft of all, Man, Male and Female: Gen. i. throughout. The Goodness of God fhines forth in this Order of the Creation, in that the Places were prepared before the Dwellers, the Food before the Eaters, and all neceffary for the Ufe of Man before Man himself. As for the Cafe all Things were made in, they were made all very good: Gen. i. 31. And God faw every
thing that he had made, and behold, it was very good; that is to fay, very fit for the Ends and Ufes for which they were made. Wherefore, the Angels were all made holy and happy. And fome of them did continue in that State, 1 Tim. v. 21. I charge thee before the elect angels,'
c; but others of them finned, and fell, and became Devils, Jude 6.' And the angels which kept not their first eftate, but left their own habitation, he hath reserved in everlasting chains under darkness, unto the judgment of the great day.' 2 Pet. ii. 4. God fpared not the angels that finned, but caft them down to hell, and delivered them into chains of darkness, to be reserved unto judgment."
Queft. 10. How did God create Man? Anf. God created Man Male and Female, after his own Image, in Knowledge, Righteoufnefs, and Holinefs, with Dominion over the Creatures.
By Male and Female, is meant Man and WoThe Man was first made, and then the Woman, 1 Tim.ii.13.; and the Woman was made to be a