Saturday, December 10, 2011

Clarke and Holmes on the decree of God

“The decree of God is that whereby God hath from eternity set down with himself whatsoever shall come to pass in time. Eph. i. 2. All things with their causes, effects, circumstances and manner of being, are determined by God. Acts ii. 23, Acts iv. 28. This decree is most wise; Rom. xi. 33; most just; Rom. ix. 13-14; eternal; Eph. i. 4-5, II Thess. ii. 13; necessary; Psa. xxxiii. 2, Prov. xix. 21; unchangeable; Heb. xi. 17; most free; Rom. ix. 13; and the cause of all good; Jam. i. 17; but not of any sin; I John i. 5. The special decree of God concerning angels and men is called predestination. Rom. viii. 30.” -- Introductory to articles of faith evidently written by John Clarke and Obadiah Holmes for the baptized church of Christ in Newport, Rhode Island. I’m not sure when this was written, but sometime before Clarke’s death in 1676. Typed as recorded in John Clarke (1609-1676) Pioneer in American Medicine, Democratic Ideals, and Champion of Religious Liberty, by Louis Franklin Asher, p. 117; This is a clear expression of what the English and American Particular Baptist believed regarding predestination.

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