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Son, in whom I am well pleased. Secondly, from the Institution of our own Baptism, Matt. xxviii. 19. GO ye therefore teach all Nations, baptizing them in the Name of the Father, of the Son, and of the Holy Ghoft. Thirdly, from the apoftolical Benediction, 2 Cor. xiij. 14. The Grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Love of God, and the Communion of the Holy Ghost, be with you all. Amen.
Q. Are these three Perfons then three Gods?
A. No. It is a Unity of Effence, and a Trinity of Persons, ist Ep. John v. 7. For there are three that bear Record in Heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost; and these three are one.
Q. How do you prove that all this will answer the Intention of the Catechif?
A. Because there is no Confolation for an afflicted Soul, without a right Knowledge of this Doctrine, and a true Belief of this Mystery, trufting unto the Father as his Father, unto the Son as his Redeemer, and unto the Holy Ghost as his Sanctifier and Comforter.
Q. How do you prove that this is pure Doctrine?
Ā. Because it is according to Moses, the Prophets, and Apostles, and to the Opinion of orthodox Chriftians, by whom this Doctrine is always learned and confessed, and which many of them have sealed with their Blood.
Q. What is the first Instruction arising from thence?
A. That we endeavour to come at the Knowledge of this pure and excellent Being, not only by a fuperficial View of the Works of his Creation, from whence may be concluded his eternal Power and Godhead, but from the Holy Scripture, wherein he hath manifested himself in all his Excellencies we should know, especially in the Riches of his Goodness and Power, which he hath fo fully shewn for the Benefit of poor Sinners in Jesus his only begotten Son, thro' the Holy Ghoft.
Q. What is the second Instruction ?
A. That our fupreme Love is due to God; that we adore him only, with all our Heart, with all our Soul, with all our Might, Deut. vi. 5. That we be sincerely thankful for the Gospel, which discovers the only true God to us; and that we are not as the Heathens, who worship many and falfe Gods, or the true God in false Ways.
Q. What is.ibe third Instruction?
A. Hence also we learn the true Order and Manner of worshipping God in the Son, John xvi. 23. and by the Spirit, Eph. vi. 18.
Q. And what is the fourth. Instruction from the Trie nity ?
A. That we always distinctly glorify the three. Persons in the Godhead; and live more and more agreeable to their Virtues, and to the happy Relations we stand in respectively to them, which will tend to our own Perfection, so it will be a special Part of our Blessedness in Heaven, to contemplate and enjoy the distinct Benefits received from them all, Rev. i. 5. Of GOD the FATHER. The 26th Question of the HEIDELBERG
CATECHISM.. 0 W HAT. do you mean
by those Words, I believe in God the Father, Almighty Maker of Heaven and Earth?
“ A. That the eternal Father of our Lord Jesus. “ Christ, who created the Heavens and Earth, and “ all that in them is of nothing; and who likewise “ maintains and governs it by his eternal Council and • Providence, is also my Father, and my God, through « the Love of Jesus Christ; in whom also I have such " a Confidence, that I doubt not he will provide me. " with all Things necessary, both for Soul and Body;
or and that he will turn to my Benefit all the Mis“ fortunes, which, by his Permiffion may befall
me in this Valley of Tears; for he is able to do « it, as a God of all Power, and will do it, as a « faithful Father."
A. Wnat doth the Catechist here mean by the eternal Council of God?
A. He means the eternal Purpose of God, according to the Council of his Will, whereby, for his own Glory, he hath ordained whatsoever comes to pass, Eph. i. 11. In whom also we have obtained an Inheritance, being predestinated according to the Purpose of him who worketh all Things, after the Council of his own Will. And the End of that was the Glory of his own Name, that we should be to the Praise of his Glory, who first trusted in Chrift, Eph. i. 11.
Q. How doth God execute his Decree?
A. God executeth his Decree in the Works of Creation and Providence.
Q. What is meant by Creation?
A. To create, is to give a Being to that which bad po Being; or to bring Something out of Nothing, Heb. xi. 3. Through Faith we understand that the Worlds were framed by the Word of God; so that Things wbich are feen, were not made of Things that da appear.
Q. Who is the Creator?
Q. When you speak of God, do you understand only the Father?
A. No. But as well the Son and the Holy Ghost, who cannot be excluded, John i. 3. Col. i. 16. And of the Holy Ghost, Gen. i. 2. Pf. xxxiii. 6.
Q. Why do you call then in particular the Father ?
1. That is only according to the divine Oeconomy, wherein the Father is the firft Perfon.
Q. What are the Works of Creation?
A. The whole Universe, Heaven and Earth, Gen. i. 1. Visible and invisible Things, Gol. i. 16.
Q. How did God create the World?
A. By his infinite Power; executed by his Word of Command, Pf. xxxiii. 6. 9. By the Word of the Lord were the Heavens made, and all the Host of them by the Breath of his Mouth; for he spake, and it was done; he commanded, and it stood faft.
Q. Is not the World from Eternity, as to its Matter or Form.
A. No. There is nothing Eternal but God, PA xc. 2. Prov. xxii. And the World has a Beginnings Fobni. 3. Heb. i. 2. And as Reafon teaches us.
Q. When did God create the World?
1. Mofes faith, In the Beginning, Gen. i. 1. In the Space of Six Days.
Q. What are the Attributes of God, which fins forth in the Creation?
A. The Wisdom of God shines forth gloriously not only in their Formation, but Dependance one upon another, Pf. civ. 24. O Lord, how manifold are all thy Works! In Wisdom haft thou made them all ; the Earth is full of thy Riches.
Q. What ought a Christian's Faith to be of this Doctrine?
A. He ought to acknowledge the. Truth of this Creation, because Religion and Scripture dictate it. 2d, He ought to acknowledge it necessary to be believed, because he fees herein the Omnipotency of God, the Dependency and Obligation of the Creature.
Q. What farther Ufe does he make thereof.?
Ā. He lays, it as a Foundation of his Truft, upon which, he buildeth his Salvation, with a true Confidence on the eternal. Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whose Satisfaction, he is the Father of all true Believers, John xx.. 17. Who will sustain them by his Providence, according to the Council of his Will; who will freely give unto them all Things, Rom. viii. 32. And all Things fall work together for Good to them that love God, Rom. viii. 28.
Q. What do you then conclude from this?
Ā. That this Doctrine is a necessary Object of our Faith and Confidence, tending to our Consolation ; and that the Catechist hath herę laid down the same, conformable to the holy Scriptures, whereby we may see the Purity of it, and gives unto the sorrowful Sinner the right Means to find his stedfast Consolation through the Love of Jesus Christ, and Faith in him?
Q. What is the final Instruction from hence ?
A. That we ought to know God as our Creator. 2dly, That he is only the proper Object of Worship. 3dly, That we invoke him with the deepest Supplication, to make us in Christ new Creatures, so that he as our Creator
for ever be our Father, that so we
“ A. That infinite and omnipresent Virtue o of God, by which he maintains and conducts, as it
were by the Hand the Heaven and Earth, and in
general all Creatures, so that the Herbs and Plants, “ Rain and Drought, Fruitfulness and Barrenness, « Meat and Drink, Health and Sickness, Riches and “ Poverty, and in a Word, whatsoever happens in the “ World comes not by Chance, but is dispensed to us " by his fatherly Hand.
Q. How doth it appear that there is a divine Providence ?
A. It appears by plain Scripture Testimonies, Heb. i. 3. Upholding all Things by the Word of his Power, Col.i. 17. By him all Things confift, Luke xii. 6, 7. Are not five Sparrows sold for two Farthings, and not one of them is forgotten before God, but even the very
Hairs fyour Head are all numbered.