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  • BOOK 1.


    CHAPTER 1.

    GENERAL PRINCIPLES CONCERNING THE HOLY SPIRIT AND HIS WORK. <461201>1 Corinthians 12:1 opened — Pneumatika>, spiritual gifts — Their grant unto, use and abuse in, that church — Jesus, how called “anathema” — Impiety of the Jews — How called “Lord” —The foundation of church order and worship — In what sense we are enabled by the Spirit to call Jesus “Lord” — The Holy Spirit the author of all gifts — why called “God,” and “The Lord” — General distribution of spiritual gifts — Proper end of their communication — Nine sorts of gifts — Abuse of them in the church — Their tendency unto peace and order — General design of the ensuing discourse concerning the Spirit and his dispensation — Importance of the doctrine concerning the Spirit of God and his operations — Reasons hereof — Promise of the Spirit to supply the absence of Christ, as to his human nature — Concernment thereof — Work of the Spirit in the ministration of the gospel — All saving good communicated unto us and wrought in us by him — Sin against the Holy Ghost irremissible — False pretenses unto the Spirit dangerous — Pretenses unto the spirit of prophecy under the Old Testament — Two sorts of false prophets: the first; the second sort — Pretenders under the New Testament — The rule for the trial of such pretenders, <620401>1 John 4:1-3 — Rules to this purpose under the Old and New Testaments compared — A false spirit, set up against the Spirit of God, examined — False and noxious opinions concerning the Spirit, and how to be obviated — .Reproaches of the Spirit and his work — Principles and occasions of the apostasy of churches under the law and gospel — Dispensation of the Spirit not confined to the first ages of the church — The great necessity of a diligent inquiry into the things taught concerning the Spirit of God and his work.

    THE apostle Paul, in the 12th chapter of his First Epistle to the Corinthians, directs their exercise of spiritual gifts, concerning which, amongst other things and emergencies, they had made inquiry of him. This the fast words wherewith he prefaceth his whole discourse declare: Verse 1, “Now, concerning spiritual gifts,” — Peri< de< tw~n pneumatikw~n that is carisma>twn as his ensuing declaration doth evince. And the imagination of some, concerning spiritual persons to be here intended, contrary to the sense of all the ancients, is inconsistent with the context: f1 for as it was about spiritual gifts and their exercise that the church had consulted with him, so the whole series of his ensuing discourse is directive therein; and, therefore, in the close of it, contracting the design of the whole, he doth it in that advice, Zhlou~te de< ta< cari>smata ta< krei>ttna , — Covet earnestly the best gifts,” — namely, among those which he proposed to treat of, and had done so accordingly, verse 31. The ta< pneumatika< of verse 1 are the ta< cari>smata of verse 31; as it is expressed, chap. <461401> 14:1, Zhlou~te de< ta< pneumatika> — that is, cari>smata , — “‘Desire spiritual gifts,’ whose nature and use you are now instructed in, as it first was proposed.” Of these that church had received an abundant measure, especially of those that were extraordinary, and tended to the conviction of unbelievers: for the Lord having “much people in that city,” whom he intended to call to the faith, Acts 18:9,10, not only encouraged our apostle, against all fears and dangers, to begin and carry on the work of preaching there, wherein he continued “a year and six months,” verse 11, but also furnished the first converts with such eminent, and some of them such miraculous gifts, as might be a prevalent means to the conversion of many others; for he will never be wanting to provide instruments and suitable means for the effectual attaining of any end that he aimeth at. In the use, exercise, and management of these “spiritual gifts,” that church, or sundry of the principal members of it, had fallen into manifold disorders, and abused them unto the matter of emulation and ambition, whereon other evils did ensue; as the best of God’s gifts may be abused by the lusts of men, and the purest water may be tainted by the earthen vessels whereinto it is poured. Upon the information of some who, loving truth, peace, and order, were troubled at these miscarriages, 1 Corinthians 1:11, and in answer unto a letter of the whole church, written unto him about these and other occurrences, chap. <460701> 7:1, he gives them counsel and advice for the rectifying of these abuses.

    And, first, to prepare them aright with humility and thankfulness, becoming them who were intrusted with such excellent privileges as they had abused, and without which they could not receive the instruction which he intended them, he mindeth them of their former state and condition before their calling and conversion to Christ, chap. 12:2, “Ye know that ye were Gentiles, carried away with dumb idols, even as ye were led;” wjv a\n h]gesqe ajpago>menoi , — hurried with violent impressions from the devil into the service of idols. This he mentions not to reproach them, but to let them know what frame of mind and what fruit of life might be justly expected from them who had received such an alteration in their condition. Particularly, as he elsewhere tells them, if they had not made themselves to differ from others, if they had nothing but what they had received, — they should not boast nor exalt themselves above others, as though they had not received, chap. 4:7; for it is a vain thing for a man to boast in himself of what he hath freely received of another, and never deserved so to receive it, as it is with all who have received either gifts or grace from God.

    This alteration of their state and condition he farther declares unto them by the effects and author of it: chap. 12:3, “Wherefore I give you to understand, that no man speaking by the Spirit of God calleth Jesus accursed: and that no man can say that Jesus is the Lord, but by the Holy Ghost.” The great difference which was then in the world was concerning Jesus, who was preached unto them all. Unbelievers, who were still carried with au impetus of mind and affections after “dumb idols,” being led and acted therein by the spirit of the devil, blasphemed, and said Jesus was anathema, or one accursed. They looked on him as a person to be detested and abominated as the common odium of their gods and men. Hence, on the mention of him they used to say, “Jesus anathema,” “He is,” or, “Let him be, accursed,” detested, destroyed. And in this blasphemy do the Jews continue to this day, hiding their cursed sentiments under a corrupt pronunciation of his name: for instead of [æWvye , they write and call him Wvye , the initial letters of wOrk]ziw] wOmv] jMæyi , — that is, “Let his name and memory be blotted out;” the same with “Jesus anathema” And this blasphemy of pronouncing Jesus accursed was that wherewith the first persecutors of the church tried the faith of Christians, as Pliny in his epistle to Trajan, and Justin Martyr, with other apologists, agree; and as the apostle says, those who did thus did not so “by the Spirit of God,” so he intends that they did it by the acting and instigation of the devil, the unclean spirit, which ruled in those children of disobedience. And this was the condition of those Corinthians themselves to whom he wrote, whilst they also were carried away after “dumb idols” On the other side, those that believed called Jesus “Lord,” or professed that he was the Lord; and thereby avowed their faith in him and obedience unto him. Principally, they owned him to be Jehovah, the Lord over all, God blessed forever; for the name hwO;hy] is everywhere in the New Testament expressed by Ku>riov , here used. He who thus professeth Jesus to be the Lord, in the first place acknowledgeth him to be the true God. And then they professed him therewithal to be their Lord, the Lord of their souls and consciences, unto whom they owed all subjection and performed all obedience; as Thomas did in his great confession, “My Lord and my God,” John 20:28. Now, as he had before intimated that those who disowned him and called him “accursed” did speak by the instinct and instigation of the devil, by whom they were acted, so he lets them know, on the other hand, that no man can thus own and confess Jesus to be the “Lord” but by the Holy Ghost. But it may be said that some acted by the unclean spirit confessed Christ to be the Lord. So did the man in the synagogue, who cried out, “I know thee who thou art, the Holy One of God,” Mark 1:23,24; and verse 34, he “suffered not the devils to speak, because they knew him.” And the damsel possessed with a spirit of divination cried after the apostle and his companions, saying, “These men are the servants of the most high God,” Acts 16:17. So also did the man who abode in the tombs, possessed with an unclean spirit, who cried out unto him, “What have I to do with thee, Jesus, thou Son of the most high God,” Mark 5:7.

    And other testimonies to the like purpose among the heathen, and from their oracles, might be produced. Ans. 1. Our apostle speaks of such a saying of Jesus to be Lord as is accompanied with faith in him and subjection of soul unto him; which is from the Holy Ghost alone. Thus none acted by the unclean spirit can call him Lord. 2. These acknowledgments were either (1.) wrested from the devil, and were no small part of his punishment and torment; or (2.) were designed by him with an intention to prejudice the glory of Christ by his testimony, who was a liar from the beginning; and “Malus bonum cure simulat, tune est pessimus.” These things, therefore, can have here no place. Hereby, then, the apostle informs them wherein the foundation of all church relation, order, and worship, did consist: for whereas they had all respect unto the Lordship of Christ and their acknowledgment thereof, this was not from themselves, but was a pure effect of the operation of the Holy Ghost in them and towards them. And anything of the like kind which doth not proceed from the same cause and fountain is of no use to the glory of God, nor of any advantage unto the souls of men.

    Some think that this saying of Jesus to be the Lord is to be restrained unto the manner of speaking afterward insisted on; for the apostle in the following verses treateth of those extraordinary gifts which many in that church were then endowed withal. None can,” saith he, “say ‘Jesus is the Lord,’ in an extraordinary manner, with divers tongues, and in prophecy, but by the Holy Ghost;” — without his especial assistance, none can eminently and miraculously declare him so to be. And if this be so, it is likely that those before intended, who said Jesus was accursed, were some persons pretending to be acted, or really acted, by an extraordinary spirit, which the apostle declares not to be the Spirit of God; and so Chrysostom interprets those words of them who were visibly and violently acted by the devil. Many such instruments of his malice did Satan stir up in those days, to preserve, if it were possible, his tottering kingdom from ruin. But there is no necessity thus to restrain the words, or to affix this sense unto them; yea, it seems to me to be inconsistent with the design of the apostle and scope of the place: for intending to instruct the Corinthians, as was said, in the nature, use, and exercise of spiritual gifts, he first lays down the spring and fountain of all saving profession of the gospel, which those gifts were designed to the furtherance and improvement of. Hereupon, having minded them of their heathen state and condition before, he lets them know by what means they were brought into the profession of the gospel, and owning of Jesus to be the Lord, in opposition unto the dumb idols whom they had served; and this was by the Author of those gifts, unto whose consideration he was now addressing himself. The great change wrought in them, as to their religion and profession, was by the Holy Ghost; for no man can say that Jesus is the Lord, which is the sum and substance of our Christian profession, but by him, though some think he hath little or no concern at all in this matter. But to say Christ is the Lord includes two things: — First, Faith in him as Lord and Savior. So was he declared and preached by the angels, Luke 2:11, “A Savior, which is Christ the Lord.” And this word “Lord” includes, as the dignity of his person, so his investiture with those offices which for our good this Lord did exercise and discharge. Secondly, The profession of that faith. Which two, where they are sincere, do always accompany each other, Romans 10:10; for as the saying of Jesus to be anathema did comprise an open disclaimer and abrenunciation of him, so the calling of him Lord expresseth the profession of our faith in him, and subjection unto him. And both these are here intended to be sincere and saving: for that faith and profession are intended whereby the church is built upon the rock; the same with that of Peter, “Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God,” Matthew 16:16. And that these are the works of the Holy Ghost, which none of themselves are sufficient for, shall, God assisting, be afterward abundantly declared.

    Having thus stated the original and foundation of the church, in its faith, profession, order, and worship, he farther acquaints them that the same Spirit is likewise the author of all those gifts whereby it was to be built up and established, and whereby the profession of it might be enlarged: Corinthians 12:4, “Now there are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit.”

    These are the things which he intendeth to discourse upon, wherein he enlargeth himself in the whole ensuing chapter. Now, became the particulars here insisted on by him in the beginning of his discourse will all of them occur unto us and be called over again in their proper places, I shall only point unto the heads of the discourse in the verses preceding the 11th, which we principally aim at.

    Treating, therefore, peri< tw~n pneumatikw~n , of these spiritual things or gifts in the church, he first declares their author, from whom they come, and by whom they are wrought and bestowed. Him he calls the “Spirit,” verse 4; the “Lord,” verse 5; “God,” verse 6; and to denote the oneness of their author, notwithstanding the diversify of the things themselves, he calls him the same Spirit, the same Lord, the same God. The words may be understood two ways: First, That the whole Trinity, and each person distinctly, should be intended in them; — for consider the immediate operator of these gifts, and it is the “Spirit” or the Holy Ghost, verse 4; consider them as to their procurement and immediate authoritative collation, and so they are from Christ, the Son, the “Lord,” verse 5; but as to their first original and fountain, they are from “God,” even the Father, verse 6: and all these are one and the same. But rather the Spirit alone is intended, and hath this threefold denomination given unto him; for as he is particularly denoted by the name of the “Spirit,” which he useth that we may know whom it is that eminently he intendeth, so he calls him both “Lord” and “God,” as to manifest his sovereign authority in all his works and administrations, so to ingenerate a due reverence in their hearts towards him with whom they had to do in this matter. And no more is intended in these three verses but what is summed up, verse 11, “But all these worketh that one and the self-same Spirit, dividing to every man severally as he will.”

    Secondly, With respect unto their general nature, the apostle distributes them into “gift,” cari>smata , verse 4; “administrations,” diako>niai , verse 5; “operations,” ejnergh>mata , verse 6; — which division, with the reasons of it, will in our progress be farther cleared.

    Thirdly, He declares the general end of the Spirit of God in the communication of them, and the use of them in the church: Verse 7, “But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to every man to profit withal.” Fane>rwsiv tou~ Pneu>matov hjwrd anyln Syr., — “the revelation of the Spirit;” that is, the gifts whereby and in whose exercise he manifests and reveals his own presence, power, and effectual operation.

    And the Spirit of God hath no other aim in granting these his enlightening gifts, wherein he manifests his care of the church, and declares the things of the gospel unto any man, but that they should be used to the profit, advantage, and edification of others. They are not bestowed on men to make their secular gain or advantage by them, in riches, honor, or reputation, — for which ends Simon the magician would have purchased them with his money, Acts 8:18,19, — no, nor yet merely for the good and benefit of the souls of them that do receive them; but for the edification of the church, and the furtherance of faith and profession in others: Proron “Ad id quod expedit, prodest;” “For that which is expedient, useful, profitable,” — namely, to the church, Corinthians 6:12, 10:23; 2 Corinthians 8:10. Thus was the foundation of the first churches of the gospel laid by the Holy Ghost, and thus was the work of their building unto perfection carried on by him. How far present churches do or ought to stand on the same bottom, how far they are carried on upon the same principles, is worth our inquiry, and will in its proper place fall under our consideration.

    Fourthly, The apostle distributes the spiritual gifts then bestowed on the church, or some members of it, into nine particular heads or instances: as, — 1. Wisdom; 2. Knowledge, 1 Corinthians 12:8, or the word of wisdom and the word of knowledge; 3. Faith; 4. Healing, verse 9; 5. Working of miracles; 6. Prophecy; 7. Discerning of spirits; 8. Kinds of tongues; 9. Interpretation of tongues, verse 10.

    And all these were extraordinary gifts, in the manner of the communication and exercise, which related unto the then present state of the church. What is yet continued analogous unto them, or holding proportion with them, must be farther inquired into, when also their especial nature will be unfolded. But now if there be that great diversity of gifts in the church, f6 if so much difference in their administrations, how can it possibly be prevented but that differences and divisions will arise amongst them on whom they are bestowed and those amongst whom they are exercised? It is true, this may so fall out, and sometimes doth so; and, de facto, it did so in this church of Corinth. One admired one gift, a second another of a different kind, and so the third. Accordingly, among those who had received them, one boasted of this or that particular gift and ability, and would be continually in its exercise, to the exclusion and contempt of others, bestowed no less for the edification of the church than his own.

    And so far were they transported with vain-glory and a desire of selfadvancement, as that they preferred the use of those gifts in the church which tended principally to beget astonishment and admiration in them which heard or beheld them, before those which were peculiarly useful unto the edification of the church itself; which evil, in particular, the apostle rebukes at large, chap. 14. By this means the church came to be divided in itself, and almost to be broken in pieces, chap. 1:11, 12. So foolish ofttimes are the minds of men, so liable to be imposed upon, so common is it for their lusts, seduced and principled by the craft of Satan, to turn judgment into wormwood, and to abuse the most useful effects of divine grace and bounty! To prevent all these evils for the future, and to manifest how perfect a harmony there is in all these divers gifts and different administrations, at what an agreement they are among themselves in their tendency unto the same ends of the union and edification of the church, from what fountain of wisdom they do proceed, and with what care they ought to be used and improved, the apostle declares unto them both the author of them and the rule he proceedeth by in their dispensation, chap. 12:11. “All these,” saith he, “worketh that one and the self-same Spirit, dividing to every man severally as he will.”

    I shall not at present farther open or insist upon these words. Frequent recourse must be had unto them in our progress, wherein they will be fully explicated as to what concerns the person of the Spirit, his will, and his operations, which are all asserted in them; for my purpose is, through the permission and assistance of God, to treat from hence of the name, nature, existence, and whole work of the Holy Spirit, with the grace of God through Jesus Christ in the communication of him unto the sons of men: a work in itself too great and difficult for me to undertake, and beyond my ability to manage unto the glory of God or the edification of the souls of them that do believe, for “who is sufficient for these things?” but yet I dare not utterly faint in it nor under it, whilst I look unto Him whose work it is, who giveth wisdom to them that lack it, and upbraideth them not, James 1:5. Our eyes, therefore, are unto him alone, who both supplieth seed to the sower, and when he hath done, blesseth it with an increase.

    The present necessity, importance, and usefulness of this work, are the things which alone have engaged me into the undertaking of it. These, therefore, I shall briefly represent in some general considerations, before I insist on the things themselves whose especial explanation is designed.

    First, then, we may consider, That the doctrine of the Spirit of God, his work and grace, is the second great head or principle of those gospel truths wherein the glory of God and the good of the souls of men are most eminently concerned. And such also it is, that without it, — without the knowledge of it in its truth, and the improvement of it in its power, — the other will be useless unto those ends. For when God designed the great and glorious work of recovering fallen man and the saving of sinners, to the praise of the glory of his grace, he appointed, in his infinite wisdom, two great means thereof. The one was the giving of his Son for them, and the other was the giving of his Spirit unto them. And hereby was way made for the manifestation of the glory of the whole blessed Trinity; which is the utmost end of all the works of God. Hereby were the love, grace, and wisdom of the Father, in the design and projection of the whole; the love, grace, and condescension of the Son, in the execution, purchase, and procurement of grace and salvation for sinners; with the love, grace, and power of the Holy Spirit, in the effectual application of all unto the souls of men, — made gloriously conspicuous. Hence, from the first entrance of sin, there were two general heads of the promise of God unto men, concerning the means of their recovery and salvation. The one was that concerning the sending of his Son to be incarnate, to take our nature upon him, and to suffer for us therein; the other, concerning the giving of his Spirit, to make the effects and fruits of the incarnation, obedience, and suffering of his Son, effectual in us and towards us. To these heads may all the promises of God be reduced. Now, because the former was to be the foundation of the latter, that was first to be laid down and most insisted on until it was actually accomplished. Hence, the great promise of the Old Testament, the principal object of the faith, hope, and expectation of believers, was that concerning the coming of the Son of God in the flesh, and the work which he was to perform. Yet was this also, as we shall see in our progress, accompanied with a great intermixture of promises concerning the Holy Spirit, to render his coming and work effectual unto us. But when once that first work was fully accomplished, when the Son of God was come, and had destroyed the works of the devil, the principal remaining promise of the New Testament, the spring of all the rest, concerneth the sending of the Holy Spirit unto the accomplishment of his part of that great work which God had designed. Hence, the Holy Ghost, the doctrine concerning his person, his work, his grace, is the most peculiar and principal subject of the Scriptures of the New Testament, and a most eminent immediate object of the faith of them that do believe; and this must be farther cleared, seeing we have to deal with some who will scarce allow him to be of any consideration in these matters at all. But I shall be brief in these previous testimonies hereunto, because the whole ensuing discourse is designed to the demonstration of the truth of this assertion. 1. It is of great moment, and sufficient of itself to maintain the cause as proposed, that when our Lord Jesus Christ was to leave the world, he promised to send his Holy Spirit unto his disciples to supply his absence.

    Of what use the presence of Christ was unto his disciples we may in some measure conceive. They knew full well whose hearts were filled with sorrow upon the mention of his leaving of them, John 16:5,6. Designing to relieve them in this great distress, — which drew out the highest expressions of love, tenderness, compassion, and care towards them, — he doth it principally by this promise; which he assures them shall be to their greater advantage than any they could receive by the continuance of his bodily presence amongst them. And to secure them hereof, as also to inform them of its great importance, he repeats it frequently unto them, and inculcates it upon them. Consider somewhat of what he says to this purpose in his last discourse with them: John 14:16-18, “I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever; even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you. I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you;” that is, in and by this Holy Spirit. And verses 25-27, “These things have I spoken unto you, being yet present with you.

    But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you. Peace I leave with you,” etc.

    And chap. 15:26, “But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, he shall testify of me.”

    And chap. 16:5-15, “Now I go my way to him that sent me; and none of you asketh me, Whither goest thou? But because I have said these things unto you, sorrow hath filled your heart. Nevertheless I tell you the truth; It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you. And when he is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment: of sin, because they believe not on me; of righteousness, because I go to my Father, and ye see me no more; of judgment, because the prince of this world is judged. I have yet many things to say unto you, but ye cannot bear them now. Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will show you things to come. He shall glorify me: for he shall receive of mine, and shall show it unto you. All things that the Father hath are mine: therefore said I, that he shall take of mine, and shall show it unto you.” f8 This was the great legacy which our Lord Jesus Christ, departing out of this world, bequeathed unto his sorrowful disciples. This he promiseth unto them as a sufficient relief against all their troubles, and a faithful guide in all their ways. And because of the importance of it unto them, he frequently repeats it, and enlargeth upon the benefits that they should receive thereby, giving them a particular account why it would be more advantageous unto them than his own bodily presence; and, therefore, after his resurrection he minds them again of this promise, commanding them to act nothing towards the building of the church until it was accomplished towards them, Acts 1:4,5,8. They would have been again embracing his human nature, and rejoicing in it; but as he said unto Mary, “Touch me not,” John 20:17, to wean her from any carnal consideration of him, so he instructs them all now to look after and trust unto the promise of the Holy Ghost. Hence is that of our apostle, “Though we have known Christ after the flesh, yet now henceforth know we him no more,” 2 Corinthians 5:16; for although it was a great privilege to have known Christ in this world after the flesh, yet it was much greater to enjoy him in the dispensation of the Spirit. And this was spoken by the apostle, as the ancients judge, to rebuke the boasting of some about their seeing the Lord in the flesh, who were thereon called despo>sunoi , whom he directs unto a more excellent knowledge of him. It is in vain pretended that it was the apostles only, and it may be some of the primitive Christians, who were concerned in this promise, for although the Holy Ghost was bestowed on them in a peculiar manner and for especial ends, yet the promise in general belongs unto all believers unto the end of the world; for as to what concerns his gracious operations, whatever the Lord Christ prayed for them, and so promised unto them (as the Spirit was procured for them on his prayer, John 14:16,17), he “prayed not for it for them alone, but for them also which should believe on him through their word,” chap. 17:20. And his promise is, to be “with his alway, even unto the end of the world,” Matthew 28:20; as also, that “wherever two or three are gathered together in his name, there he would be in the midst of them,” chap. 18:20; — which he is no otherwise but by his Spirit; for as for his human nature, “the heaven must receive him until the times of restitution of all things, Acts 3:21. And this one consideration is sufficient to evince the importance of the doctrine and things which concern the Holy Spirit; for is it possible that any Christian should be so supinely negligent and careless, so unconcerned in the things whereon his present comforts and future happiness do absolutely depend, as not to think it his duty to inquire with the greatest care and diligence into what our Lord Jesus Christ hath left unto us, to supply his absence, and at length to bring us unto himself? He by whom these things are despised hath neither part nor lot in Christ himself; for “if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his,” Romans 8:9. 2. The great work of the Holy Ghost in the dispensation and ministration of the gospel, unto all the ends of it, is another evidence unto the same purpose. Hence, the gospel itself is called “The ministration of the Spirit,” 2 Corinthians 3:8, in opposition to that of the law, which is called the ministration of the letter and of condemnation. Diakoni>a tou~ Pneu>matov , the “ministry of the Spirit,” is either that ministry which the Spirit makes effectual, or that ministry whereby the Spirit in his gifts and graces is communicated unto men. And this is that which gives unto the ministry of the gospel both its glory and its efficacy. Take away the Spirit from the gospel and you render it a dead letter, and leave the New Testament of no more use unto Christians than the Old Testament is of unto the Jews. It is therefore a mischievous imagination, proceeding from ignorance, blindness, and unbelief, that there is no more in the gospel but what is contained under any other doctrine or declaration of truth, — that it is nothing but a book for men to exercise their reason in and upon, and to improve the things of it by the same faculty: for this is to separate the Spirit, or the dispensation of the Spirit, from it, which is in truth to destroy it; and therewith is the covenant of God rejected, which is, that his word and Spirit shall go together, Isaiah 59:21. We shall, therefore, God assisting, manifest in our progress that the whole ministry of the gospel, the whole use and efficacy of it, do depend on that ministration of the Spirit wherewith, according to the promise of God, it is accompanied. If, therefore, we have any concernment in, or have ever received any benefit by, the gospel, or the ministration of it, we have a signal duty lying before us in the matter in hand. 3. There is not any spiritual or saving good from first to last communicated unto us, or that we are from and by the grace of God made partakers of, but it is revealed to us and bestowed on us by the Holy Ghost. He who hath not an immediate and especial work of the Spirit of God upon him and towards him did never receive any especial love, grace, or mercy, from God. For how should he do so? Whatever God works in us and upon us, he doth it by his Spirit; he, therefore, who hath no work of the Spirit of God upon his heart did never receive either mercy or grace from God, for God giveth them not but by his Spirit. A disclaimer, therefore, of any work of the Spirit of God in us or upon us is a disclaimer of all interest in his grace and mercy; and they may do well to consider it with whom the work of the Spirit of God is a reproach. When they can tell us of any other way whereby a man may be made partaker of mercy and grace, we will attend unto it; in the meantime we shall prove from the Scripture this to be the way of God. 4. There is not anything done in us or by us that is holy and acceptable unto God, but it is an effect of the Holy Spirit; it is of his operation in us and by us. Without him we can do nothing; for without Christ we cannot, John 15:5, and by him alone is the grace of Christ communicated unto us and wrought in us. By him we are regenerated; by him we are sanctified; by him we are cleansed; by him are we assisted in and unto every good work. Particular instances to this purpose will be afterward insisted on and proved. And it is our unquestionable concernment to inquire into the cause and spring of all that is good in us, wherein also we shall have a true discovery of the spring and cause of all that is evil, without a competent knowledge of both which we can do nothing as we ought. 5. God lets us know that the only peculiarly remediless sin and way of sinning under the gospel is to sin in an especial manner against the Holy Ghost. And this of itself is sufficient to convince us how needful it is for us to be well instructed in what concerns him; for there is somewhat that doth so, which is accompanied with irrecoverable and eternal ruin; and so is nothing else in the world. So Mark 3:28,29, “All sins shall be forgiven unto the sons of men, and blasphemies wherewith soever they shall blaspheme: but he that shall blaspheme against the Holy Ghost hath never forgiveness.”

    Or, “Whosoever speaketh against the Holy Ghost, it shall not be forgiven him, neither in this world, neither in the world to come,” Matthew 12:32.

    There remains nothing for him who doth despite to the Spirit of grace but a “certain fearful looking for of judgment and fiery indignation, which shall devour the adversaries,” Hebrews 10:27,29.

    This is that “sin unto death” whose remission is not to be prayed for, John 5:16: for he having taken upon him to make effectual unto us the great remedy provided in the blood of Christ for the pardon of our sins, if he in the prosecution of that work be despised, blasphemed, despitefully used, there neither is relief nor can there be pardon for that sin. For whence, in that case, should they arise or spring? As God hath not another Son to offer another sacrifice for sin, — so that he by whom his sacrifice is despised can have none remaining for him, — no more hath he another Spirit to make that sacrifice effectual unto us, if the Holy Ghost in his work be despised and rejected. This, therefore, is a tender place. We cannot use too much holy diligence in our inquiries after what God hath revealed in his word concerning his Spirit and his work, seeing there may be so fatal a miscarriage in an opposition unto him as the nature of man is incapable of in any other instance.

    And these considerations belong unto the first head of reasons of the importance, use, and necessity, of the doctrine proposed to be inquired into. They are enough to manifest what is the concernment of all believers herein; for on the account of these things the Scripture plainly declares, as we observed before, that “he who hath not the Spirit of Christ is none of his,” — their portion is not in him, they shall have no benefit by his mediation. Men may please themselves with a profession of being Christians and owning the gospel, whilst they despise the Spirit of God, both name and thing. Their condition we shall examine and judge by the Scripture before we come to the end of this discourse. And for the Scripture itself, whoever reads the books of the New Testament, besides the great and precious promises that are given concerning him in the Old, will find and conclude, unless he be prepossessed with prejudice, that the whole of what is declared in those writings turns on this only hinge.

    Remove from them the consideration of the Spirit of God and his work, and it will be hard to find out what they aim at or tend unto.

    Secondly, The great deceit and abuse that hath been, in all ages of the church, under the pretense of the name and work of the Spirit make the thorough consideration of what we are taught concerning them exceeding necessary. Had not these things been excellent in themselves, and so acknowledged by all Christians, they would never have been by so many falsely pretended unto. Men do not seek to adorn themselves with rags, or to boast of what, on its own account, is under just contempt. And according to the worth of things, so are they liable to abuse; and the more excellent anything is, the more vile and pernicious is an undue pretense unto it. Such have been the false pretenses of some in all ages unto the Spirit of God and his work, whose real excellencies in themselves have made those pretenses abominable and unspeakably dangerous; for the better the things are which are counterfeited, the worse always are the ends they are employed unto. In the whole world there is nothing so vile as that which pretendeth to be God, and is not; nor is any other thing capable of so pernicious an abuse. Some instances hereof I shall give, both out of the Old Testament and the New.

    The most signal gift of the Spirit of God, for the use of the church under the Old Testament, was that of prophecy. This, therefore, was deservedly in honor and reputation, as having a great impression of the authority of God upon it, and in it of his nearness unto man. Besides, those in whom it was had justly the conduct of the minds and consciences of others given up unto them: for they spake in the name of God, and had his warranty for what they proposed; which is the highest security of obedience. And these things caused many to pretend unto this gift who were, indeed, never inspired by the Holy Spirit; but were rather, on the contrary, acted by a spirit of lying and uncleanness: for it is very probable that when men falsely and in mere pretense took upon them to be prophets divinely inspired, without any antecedent diabolical enthusiasm, that the devil made use of them to compass his own designs Being given up, by the righteous judgment of God, unto all delusions, for belying his Spirit and holy inspirations, they were quickly possessed with a spirit of lying and unclean divination. So the false prophets of Ahab, who encouraged him to go up unto Ramoth-gilead, foretelling his prosperous success, 1 Kings 22:6, seemed only to have complied deceitfully with the inclinations of their master, and to have out-acted his other courtiers in flattery by gilding it with a pretense of prophecy; but when Micaiah came to lay open the mystery of their iniquity, it appeared that a lying spirit, by the permission of God, had possessed their minds, and gave them impressions, which being supernatural, they were deceived as well as they did deceive, verses 19-23. This they were justly given up unto, pretending falsely unto the inspiration of that Holy Spirit which they had not received. And no otherwise hath it fallen out with some in our days, whom we have seen visibly acted by an extraordinary power. Unduly pretending unto supernatural agitations from God, they were really acted by the devil; a thing they neither desired nor looked after, but, being surprised by it, were pleased with it for a while: as it was with sundry of the Quakers at their first appearance.

    Now, these false prophets of old were of two sorts, both mentioned, Deuteronomy 18:20: — First, Such as professedly served other gods, directing all their prophetic actings unto the promotion of their worship.

    Such were the prophets of Baal, in whose name expressly they prophesied, and whose assistance they invocated: “They called on the name of Baal, saying, O Baal, hear us,” 1 Kings 18:26-29. Many of these were slain by Elijah, and the whole race of them afterward extirpated by Jehu, 2 Kings 10:18-28. This put an end to his deity, for it is said, “he destroyed Baal out of Israel,” false gods having no existence but in the deceived minds of their worshippers. It may be asked why these are called “prophets?” and so, in general, of all the false prophets mentioned in the Scripture. Was it because they merely pretended and counterfeited a spirit of prophecy, or had they really any such? I answer, that I no way doubt but that they were of both sorts. These prophets of Baal were such as worshipped the sun, after the manner of the Tyrians. Herein they invented many hellish mysteries, ceremonies, and sacrifices; these they taught the people by whom they were hired. Being thus engaged in the service of the devil, he actually possessed their minds “as a spirit of divination,” and enabled them to declare things unknown unto other men. They, in the meantime, really finding themselves acted by a power superior to them, took and owned that to be the power of their god; and thereby became immediate worshippers of the devil. This our apostle declares, 1 Corinthians 10:20. Whatever those who left the true God aimed at to worship, the devil interposed himself between that and them, as the object of their adoration. Hereby he became the “god of this world,” Corinthians 4:4, — he whom in all their idols they worshipped and adored. With a spirit of divination from him were many of the false prophets acted, which they thought to be the spirit of their god; for they found themselves acted by a superior power, which they could neither excuse nor resist. Others of them were mere pretenders and counterfeits, that deceived the foolish multitude with vain, false predictions. Of these more will be spoken afterward. Secondly, Others there were who spake in the name, and, as they falsely professed, by the inspiration of the Spirit, of the holy God. With this sort of men Jeremiah had great contests; for in that apostatizing age of the church, they had got such an interest and reputation among the rulers and people as not only to confront his prophecies with contrary predictions, chap. <242801> 28:1-4, but also to traduce him as a false prophet, and to urge his punishment according to the law, chap. 29:25-27. And with the like confidence did Zedekiah the son of Chenaanah carry it towards Micaiah, 1 Kings 22:24; for he scornfully asks him, “Which way went the Spirit of the LORD from me to speak unto thee?” that is, “Whereas assuredly he speaketh in me, how came he to inspire thee with a contrary revelation?’’ Ezekiel, at the same time with Jeremiah, was exercised and perplexed with them, chap. 13 and 14; for this sort of persons, — namely, false pretenders unto divine extraordinary revelations, — did of old usually abound in times of danger and approaching desolations. The devil stirred them up to fill men with vain hopes, to keep them in sin and security, that destruction might seize upon them at unawares: and whoever take the same course in the time of deserved, threatened, impendent judgments, though they use not the same means, yet they also do the work of the devil; for whatever encourageth men to be secure in their sins is a false divination, Jeremiah 5:30,31. And this sort of men is characterized by the prophet Jeremiah, chap. 23, from verse 9 to 33; where anyone may read their sin and judgment. And yet this false pretending unto the spirit of prophecy was very far from casting any contempt on the real gift of the Holy Ghost therein; nay, it gave it the greater glory and luster. God never more honored his true prophets than when there were most false ones; neither shall ever any false pretense to the Spirit of grace render him less dear unto those that are partakers of him, or his gifts of less use unto the church.

    It was thus also under the New Testament, at the first preaching of the gospel. The doctrine of it at first was declared from the immediate revelation of the Spirit, preached by the assistance of the Spirit, made effectual by his work and power, [and] was accompanied in many by outward miraculous works and effects of the Spirit; whence the whole of what peculiarly belonged unto it, in opposition to the law, was called “The ministration of the Spirit.” These things being owned and acknowledged by all, those who had any false opinions or dotages of their own to broach, or any other deceit to put upon Christians, could think of no more expedite means for the compassing of their ends than by pretending to immediate revelations of the Spirit; for without some kind of credibility given them from hence, they knew that their fond imaginations would not be taken into the least consideration. Hence the apostle Peter, having treated concerning the revelation of God by his Spirit in prophecy, under the Old Testament and the New, 2 Epist., chap. 1:19-21, adds, as an inference from that discourse, a comparison between the false prophets that were under the Old Testament and the false teachers under the New, chap. <610201> 2:1: “But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you.” And the reason of it is, because that as they pretended to the Spirit of the Lord in their prophecies, saying, “Thus saith the LORD,” when he sent them not, so these ascribed all their abominable heresies to the inspiration of the Spirit, by whom they were not assisted.

    Hence is that blessed caution and rule given us by the apostle John, who lived to see much mischief done in the church by this pretense: 1 Epist. chap. <620401> 4:1-3, “Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world. Hereby know ye the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesseth that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is of God: and every spirit that confesseth not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God.” A twofold direction doth the apostle here give unto all believers; the first by the way of caution, that they would not believe every spirit, — that is, not receive or give credit to every doctrine that was proposed unto them as of immediate revelation and inspiration of the Spirit. He intends the same with the apostle Paul, Ephesians 4:14, who would not have us “carried about with every wind of doctrine,” like vessels at sea without anchors or helms, by the “sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive;” for the crafts and sleights intended are such as men use when they cast a mist, as it were, before the eyes of others whom they intend to cheat and defraud. So dealt false teachers with their disciples, by their pretenses of immediate revelations. His next direction informs us how we may observe this caution unto our advantage; and this is, by trying the spirits themselves. This is the duty of all believers on any such pretenses. They are to try these spirits, and examine whether they are of God or no. For the observation of this rule and discharge of this duty, the church of Ephesus is commended by our Lord Jesus Christ: Revelation 2:2, “Thou hast tried them which say they are apostles, and are not, and hast found them liars;” for those who said they were apostles pretended therewithal to apostolical authority and infallibility, on the account of the immediate inspirations which they received by the Holy Ghost. In trying them, they tried the spirits that came unto them; and by this warrant may we try the spirit of the church of Rome, which in like manner pretends unto apostolical authority and infallibility.

    Unto these two directions the apostle subjoins the reason of the present watchfulness required unto the discharge of this duty: “Because,” saith he, “many false prophets are gone out into the world.” It is “false teachers,” as Peter calls them, “bringing in damnable heresies,” concerning whom he speaks. And he calleth them “false prophets,” partly in an allusion unto the false prophets under the Old Testament, with whom they are ranked and compared by Peter, and partly because, as they fathered their prejudices on divine revelation, so these falsely ascribed their doctrines unto immediate divine inspiration. And on this account also he calleth them spirits: “Try the spirits ;” for as they pretended unto the Spirit of God, so indeed for the most part they were acted by a spirit of error, lying, and delusion, — that is, the devil himself. And therefore I no way doubt but that mostly those who made use of this plea, that they had their doctrines which they taught by immediate inspiration, did also effect other extraordinary operations or undiscoverable appearances of them, as lying miracles, by the power of that spirit whereby they were acted, as Matthew 24:24. Hence the apostle doth not direct us to try their pretensions unto inspiration by putting them on other extraordinary works for their confirmation, for these also they made a show and appearance of, and that in such a manner as that they were not to be detected by the generality of Christians; but he gives unto all a blessed stable rule, which will never fail them in this case who diligently attend unto it; and this is, to try them by the doctrine that they teach,1 John 4:2,3. Let their doctrine be examined by the Scriptures, and if it be found consonant thereunto, it may be received without danger unto the hearers, whatever corrupt affections the teachers may be influenced by; but if it be not consonant thereunto, if it keep not up a harmony in the analogy of faith, whatever inspiration or revelation be pleaded in its justification, it is to be rejected, as they also are by whom it is declared. This rule the apostle Paul confirms by the highest instance imaginable: Galatians 1:8, “Though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed.”

    And the apostle shows that, for our advantage in this trial we are to make of spirits, it is good to have a clear conviction of, and a constant adherence unto, some fundamental principles, especially such as we have reason to think will be the most cunningly attacked by seducers. Thus, because in those days the principal design of Satan was, to broach strange, false imaginations about the person and mediation of Christ, endeavoring thereby to overthrow both the one and the other, the apostle adviseth believers to try the spirits by this one fundamental principle of truth, namely, that “Jesus Christ is come in the flesh;” which contains a confession both of his person and mediation. This, therefore, believers were to demand of all new teachers and pretenders unto spiritual revelations in the first place, “Do you confess that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh?” and if they immediately made not this confession, they never stood to consider their other pretenses, but turned from them, not bidding them God speed,2 John 7,10,11. And I could easily manifest how many pernicious heresies were obviated in those days by this short confession of faith. For some of late (as Grotius, following Socinus and Schlichtingius) interpreting this coming of Christ in the flesh of his outward mean estate and condition, and not in the pomp and glory of an earthly king, do openly corrupt the text. His coming in the flesh is the same with the “Word’s being made flesh,” John 1:14; or “God being manifest in the flesh,” 1 Timothy 3:16, — that is, the Son of God being made “partaker of flesh and blood,” Hebrews 2:14; or “taking on him the seed of Abraham,” verse 16, — that is, his being “made of a woman,” Galatians 4:4; or his being “made of the seed of David according to the flesh,” Romans 1:3; or his “being of the fathers as to the flesh,” Romans 9:5. And this was directly opposed unto those heresies which were then risen, whose broachers contended that Jesus Christ was but a fantasy, an appearance, a manifestation of divine love and power, denying that the Son of God was really incarnate, as the ancients generally testify.

    And well had it been for many in our days had they attended unto such rules as this; but through a neglect of it, accompanied with an ungrounded boldness and curiosity, they have hearkened in other things to deceiving spirits, and have been engaged beyond a recovery before they have considered that by their cogging deceits they have been cheated of all the principal articles of their faith; by which if at first they had steadily tried and examined them, they might have been preserved from their snares.

    The Jews say well that there was a double trial of prophets under the Old Testament, — the one by their doctrine , the other by their predictions .

    That by their doctrine, — namely, whether they seduced men from the worship of the true God unto idolatry, — belonged unto all individual persons of the church. Direction for this is given, Deuteronomy 13:1-3, “If there arise among you a prophet, or a dreamer of dreams, and giveth thee a sign or a wonder, and the sign or the wonder come to pass, whereof he spake unto thee” (effect anything by a seeming presence of an extraordinary power), saying, “Let us go after other gods, which thou hast not known, and let us serve them; thou shalt not hearken unto the words of that prophet, or that dreamer of dreams.” Let his signs and wonders be what they would, the people were to try them by what they taught. The judgment upon predictions was left unto the sanhedrim, for which directions are given, Deuteronomy 18:20-22; and by virtue hereof they falsely and cruelly endeavored to take away the life of Jeremiah, because he foretold the ruin of them and their city, chap. 26:11. In the first place, though his sign, wonder, or prediction came to pass, yet the doctrine he sought to confirm by it being false, he was to be rejected. In the latter, the fulfilling of his sign acquitted him, because he taught with it nothing in point of doctrine that was false. The first kind of trial of the spirits of prophets is the duty of all believers under the gospel; and those who would deprive them of this liberty would make brutes of them instead of Christians, — unless to believe a man knows not what, and to obey he knows not why, be the properties of Christians. See Romans 12:2; Ephesians 5:8-12; Philippians 1:10; 1 Thessalonians 5:21.

    The other, so far as was needful to preserve the church in truth and peace, was provided for in those primitive times, whilst there was a real communication of extraordinary gifts of the Spirit (and so more occasion given to the false pretense of them, and more danger in being deceived by them), by a peculiar gift of discerning them, bestowed on some amongst them. 1 Corinthians 12:10, “Discerning of spirits” is reckoned among the gifts of the Spirit. So had the Lord graciously provided for his churches, that some among them should be enabled in an extraordinary manner to discern and judge of them who pretended unto extraordinary actings of the Spirit. And upon the ceasing of extraordinary gifts really given from God, the gift also of discerning spirits ceased, and we are left unto the word alone for the trial of any that shall pretend unto them.

    Now, this kind of pretense was so common in those days, that the apostle Paul, writing to the Thessalonians to caution them that they suffered not themselves to be deceived in their expectation and computations about the time of the coming of Christ, in the first place warns them not to be moved in it “by spirit,” 2 Thessalonians 2:2; that is, persons pretending unto spiritual revelations. Something, also, of this nature hath continued, and broken out in succeeding ages, and that in instances abominable and dreadful. And the more eminent in any season are the real effusions of the Holy Spirit upon the ministers of the gospel and disciples of Christ, the more diligence and watchfulness against these delusions are necessary; for on such opportunities it is, when the use and reputation of spiritual gifts is eminent, that Satan doth lay hold to intrude under the color of them his own deceitful suggestions. In the dark times of the Papacy, all stories are full of satanical delusions, in fantastical apparitions, horrors, spectrums, and the like effects of darkness. It was seldom or never that any falsely pretended to the gifts and graces of the Holy Spirit; for these things were then of little use or request in the world. But when God was pleased to renew really a fresh communication of spiritual gifts and graces unto men, in and upon the Reformation, the old dreads and terrors, nightly appearances, tending unto deeds of darkness, vanished, and everywhere, by Satan’s instigation, arose false pretenders to the Spirit of God; in which way of delusion he will still be more active and industrious, as God shall increase the gifts and graces of his Spirit in his churches; though as yet, in these latter ages, he hath not attained what he was arrived unto in the primitive times of the gospel. A full and clear declaration from the Scripture of the nature of the Holy Spirit and his operations may, through the blessing of God, be of use to fortify the minds of professors against satanical delusions counterfeiting his actings and inspirations; for directions unto this purpose are given us by the holy apostle, who lived to see great havoc made in the churches by deluding spirits. Knowledge of the truth, trying of spirits that go abroad by the doctrines of the Scriptures, dependence on the Holy Spirit for his teachings according to the word, are the things which to this purpose he commends unto us.

    Thirdly, There is in the days wherein we live an anti-spirit set up and advanced against the Spirit of God, in his being and all his operations, in his whole work and use towards the church of God; for this new spirit takes upon him whatever is promised to be effected by the “good Spirit of God.” This is that which some men call “the light within them,” though indeed it be nothing but a dark product of Satan upon their own imaginations, or at best the natural light of conscience; which some of the heathens also call “a spirit.’’ But hereunto do they trust, as to that which doth all for them, leaving no room for the “promise of the Spirit of God,” nor anything for him to do. This teacheth them, instructs them, enlightens them; to this they attend as the Samaritans to Simon Magus, and, as they say, yield obedience unto it; and from hence, with the fruits of it, do they expect acceptation with God, justification and blessedness hereafter. And one of these two things these deluded souls must fix upon, — namely, that this light whereof they speak is either the Holy Spirit of God, or it is not. If they say it is the Spirit, it will be easy to demonstrate how by their so saying they utterly destroy the very nature and being of the Holy Ghost, as will evidently appear in our explication of them. And if they say that it is not the Holy Spirit of God which they intend thereby, it will be no less manifest that they utterly exclude him, on the other side, from his whole work, and substitute another, yea, an enemy, in his room: for another God is a false god; another Christ is a false Christ; and another Spirit is a false spirit, — the spirit of antichrist. Now, because this is a growing evil amongst us, many being led away and seduced, our duty unto Jesus Christ and compassion for the souls of men do require that our utmost endeavor, in the ways of Christ’s appointment, should be used to obviate this evil, which eateth as doth a canker; which also is propagated by profane and vain babblings, increasing still unto more ungodliness. Some, I confess, do unduly rage against the persons of those who have imbibed these imaginations, falling upon them with violence and fury, as they do also on others; — the Lord lay it not unto their charge!

    Yet this hinders not but that, by those “weapons of our warfare which are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strongholds, casting down such like imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought unto the obedience of Christ,” we ought to attempt the destruction of their errors and the breaking of the snares of Satan, by whom they are taken captive alive at his pleasure. The course, indeed, of opposing errors and false spirits by praying, preaching, and writing, is despised by them in whose furious and haughty minds ure, seca, occide, “burn, cut, and kill,” are alone of any signification, — that think, “Arise, Peter, kill and eat,” to be a precept of more use and advantage unto them than all the commands of Jesus Christ besides; but the way proposed unto us by the Lord Jesus Christ himself, walked in by his holy apostles, and all the ancient, holy, learned writers of the church, is that which, in these matters, we must and shall attend unto: and that course which is particularly suited to obviate the evil mentioned, is, to give a full, plain, evident declaration from the Scripture of the nature and operations of the Holy Spirit of God. Hence it will be undeniably manifest what a stranger this pretended light is unto the true Spirit of Christ; how far it is from being of any real use to the souls of men; yea, how it is set up in opposition unto him and his work, by whom and by which alone we become accepted with God, and are brought unto the enjoyment of him.

    Fourthly, There are, moreover, many hurtful and noxious opinions concerning the Holy Ghost gone abroad in the world, and entertained by many, to the subversion of the faith which they have professed. Such are those whereby his deity and personality are denied. About these there have been many contests in the world: some endeavoring with diligence and subtlety to promote the perverse opinions mentioned; others “contending,” according to their duty, “for the faith once delivered unto the saints.” But these disputations are for the most part so managed, that although the truth be in some of them strenuously vindicated, yet the minds of believers generally are but little edified by them; for the most are unacquainted with the ways and terms of arguing, which are suited to convince or “stop the mouths of gainsayers,” rather than to direct the faith of others. Besides, our knowledge of things is more by their operations and proper effects than from their own nature and formal reason.

    Especially is it so in divine things, and particularly with respect unto God himself. In his own glorious being he dwelleth in light, whereunto no creature can approach. In the revelation that he hath made of himself by the effects of his will, in his word and works, are we to seek after him. By them are the otherwise invisible things of God made known, his attributes declared, and we come to a better acquaintance with him than any we can attain by our most diligent speculations about his nature itself immediately. So is it with the Holy Ghost and his personality. He is in the Scripture proposed unto us to be known by his properties and works, adjuncts and operations; by our duty towards him and our offenses against him. The due consideration of these things is that which will lead us into that assured knowledge of his being and subsistence which is necessary for the guidance of our faith and obedience; which is the end of all these inquiries, Colossians 2:2. Wherefore, although I shall by the way explain, confirm, and vindicate the testimonies that are given in the Scripture, or some of them, unto his deity and personality, yet the principal means that I shall insist on for the establishing of our faith in him is the due and just exposition and declaration of the administrations and operations that are ascribed unto him in the Scriptures; which also will give great light into the whole mystery and economy of God in the work of our salvation by Jesus Christ.

    Fifthly, The principal cause and occasion of our present undertaking is, the open and horrible opposition that is made unto the Spirit of God and his work in the world. There is no concernment of his that is not by many derided, exploded, and blasphemed. The very name of the Spirit is grown to be a reproach; nor do some think they can more despitefully expose any to scorn than by ascribing to them a “concern in the Spirit of God.” This, indeed, is a thing which I have often wondered at, and do continue still so to do: for whereas in the gospel everything that is good, holy, praiseworthy in any man, is expressly assigned to the Spirit, as the immediate efficient cause and operator of it; and whereas the condition of men without him, not made partakers of him, is described to be reprobate or rejected of God, and foreign unto any interest in Christ; yet many pretending unto the belief and profession of the gospel are so far from owning or desiring a participation of this Spirit in their own persons, as that they deride and contemn them who dare plead or avow any concern in him or his works. Only, I must grant that herein they have had some that have gone before them, — namely, the old scoffing heathens; for so doth Lucian, in his Philopatris [18], speak in imitation of a Christian by way of scorn, Le>ge para< tou~ Pneu>matov du>namin tou~ lo>gou labw>n — “Speak out now, receiving power or ability of speaking from the Spirit,” or “by the Spirit.” Certainly an attendance to the old caution. Si non caste tamen caute, had been needful for some in this matter. Could they not bring their own hearts unto a due reverence of the Spirit of God, and an endeavor after the participation of his fruits and effects, yet the things that are spoken concerning him and his work in the whole New Testament, and also in places almost innumerable in the Old, might have put a check to their public contemptuous reproaches and scornful mockings, whilst they owned those writings to be of God; — but such was his entertainment in the world upon his first effusion, Acts 2:13. Many pretenses, I know, will be pleaded to give countenance unto this abomination; for, first, they will say, “It is not the Spirit of God himself and his works, but the pretense of others unto him and them, which they so reproach and scorn.”

    I fear this plea or excuse will prove too short and narrow to make a covering unto their profaneness. It is dangerous venturing with rudeness and petulancy upon holy things, and then framing of excuses. But in reproaches of the Lord Christ and his Spirit men will not want their pretenses, John 10:32,33. And the things of the Spirit of God, which they thus reproach and scorn in any, are either such as are truly and really ascribed unto him and wrought by him in the disciples of Jesus Christ, or they are not. If they are such as indeed are no effects of the Spirit of grace, such as he is not promised for, nor attested to work in them that do believe, as vain enthusiasms, ecstatical raptures and revelations, certainly it more became Christians, men professing, or at least pretending, a reverence unto God, his Spirit, and his word, to manifest to and convince those of whom they treat that such things are not “fruits of the Spirit,” but imaginations of their own, than to deride them under the name of the Spirit, or his gifts and operations. Do men consider with whom and what they make bold in these things? But if they be things that are real effects of the Spirit of Christ in them that believe, or such as are undeniably assigned unto him in the Scripture, which they despise, what remains to give countenance unto this daring profaneness? Yea, but they say, secondly, “It is not the real true operations of the Spirit themselves, but the false pretensions of others unto them, which they traduce and expose.”

    But will this warrant the course which it is manifest they steer in matter and manner? The same persons pretend to believe in Christ and the gospel, and to be made partakers of the benefits of his mediation; and yet, if they have not the Spirit of Christ, they have no saving interest in these things; for “if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.” If it be, then, only their false pretending unto the Spirit of God and his works which these persons so revile and scorn, why do they not deal with them in like manner with respect unto Christ and the profession of the gospel? why do they not say unto them, “You believe in Christ, you believe in the gospel,” and thereon expose them to derision? So plainly dealt the Jews with our Lord Jesus Christ, Psalms 22:7,8; Matthew 21:38,39. It is, therefore, the things themselves, and not the pret ences pretended, that are the objects of this contempt and reproach. Besides, suppose those whom at present on other occasions they hate or despise are not partakers of the Spirit of God, but are really strangers unto the things which hypocritically they profess, — will they grant and allow that any other Christians in the world do so really partake of him as to be led, guided, directed by him; to be quickened, sanctified, purified by him; to be enabled unto communion with God, and all duties of holy obedience by him, with those other effects and operations for which he is promised by Jesus Christ unto his disciples? If they will grant these things to be really effected and accomplished in any, let them not be offended with them who desire that they should be so in themselves, and declare themselves to that purpose; and men would have more charity for them under their petulant scoffing than otherwise they are able to exercise. It will, thirdly, yet be pleaded, “That they grant as fully as any the being of the Holy Ghost, the promise of him and his real operations; only, they differ from others as to the sense and exposition of those phrases and expressions that are used concerning these things in the Scripture, which those others abuse in an unintelligible manner, as making them proper which indeed are metaphorical.” But is this the way which they like and choose to express their notions and apprehensions, — namely, openly to revile and scorn the very naming and asserting the work of the Spirit of God, in the words which himself hath taught? A boldness this is, which, as whereof the former ages have not given us a precedent, so we hope the future will not afford an instance of any to follow the example. For their sense and apprehension of these things, they shall afterward be examined, so far as they have dared to discover them. In the meantime, we know that the Socinians acknowledge a Trinity, the sacrifice of Christ, the expiation of sin made thereby, and yet we have some differences with them about these things; and so we have with these men about the Spirit of God and his dispensation under the gospel, though, like them, they would grant the things spoken of them to be true, as metaphorically to be interpreted. But of these things we must treat more fully hereafter.

    I say it is so come to pass, amongst many who profess they believe the gospel to be true, that the name or naming of the Spirit of God is become a reproach; so also is his whole work. And the promise of him made by Jesus Christ unto his church is rendered useless and frustrated. It was the main, and upon the matter the only, supportment which he left unto it in his bodily absence, the only means of rendering the work of his mediation effectual in them and among them; for without him all others, as the word, ministry, and ordinances of worship, are lifeless and useless. God is not glorified by them, nor the souls of men advantaged. But it is now uncertain with some of what use he is unto the church; yea, as far as I can discern, whether he be of any or no. Some have not trembled to say and contend, that some things as plainly ascribed unto him in the Scripture as words can make an assignation of anything, are the cause of all the troubles and confusions in the world! Let them have the word or tradition outwardly revealing the will of God, and what it is that he would have them do (as the Jews have both to this day); these being made use of by their own reason, and improved by their natural abilities, they make up the whole of man, all that is required to render the persons or duties of any accepted with God! Of what use, then, is the Spirit of God in these things? Of none at all, it may be, nor the doctrine concerning him, “but only to fill the world with a buzz and noise, and to trouble the minds of men with unintelligible notions.” Had not these things been spoken, they should not have been repeated; for death lieth at the door in them. So, then, men may pray without him, and preach without him, and turn to God without him, and perform all their duties without him well enough; for if anyone shall plead the necessity of his assistance for the due performance of these things, and ascribe unto him all that is good and well done in them, he shall hardly escape from being notably derided. Yet all this while we would be esteemed Christians! And what do such persons think of the prayers of the ancient church and Christians unto him for the working of all good in them, and their ascriptions of every good thing unto him? And wherein have we any advantage of the Jews, or wherein consists the pre-eminence of the gospel? They have the word of God, that part of it which was committed unto their church, and which in its kind is sufficient to direct their faith and obedience; for so is the “sure word of prophecy,” if diligently attended unto, 2 Peter 1:19. And if traditions be of any use, they can outvie all the world. Neither doth this sort of men want their wits and the exercise of them. Those who converse with them in the things of this world do not use to say they are all fools. And for their diligence in the consideration of the letter of the Scripture, and inquiring into it according to the best of their understanding, none will question it but those unto whom they and their concernments are unknown. And yet after all this, they are Jews still. If we have the New Testament no otherwise than they have the Old, — have only the letter of it to philosophize upon, according to the best of our reasons and understandings, without any dispensation of the Spirit of God accompanying it to give us a saving light into the mystery of it, and to make it effectual unto our souls, — I shall not fear to say, but that as they call themselves “Jews and are not, but are the synagogue of Satan,” Revelation 2:9, so we who pretend ourselves to be Christians, as to all the saving ends of the gospel, shall not be found in a better condition.

    And yet it were to be wished that even here bounds might be fixed unto the fierceness of some men’s spirits. But they will not suffer themselves to be so confined. In many places they are transported with rage and fury, so as to stir up persecution against such as are really anointed with the Spirit of Christ, and that for no other reason but because they are so, Galatians 4:29. Other things, indeed, are pretended by them, but all the world may see that they are not of such importance as to give countenance unto their wrath. This is the latent cause which stirs it up, and is oftentimes openly expressed.

    These things at present are charged only as the miscarriages of private persons. When they are received .in churches, they are the cause of and an entrance into a fatal defection and apostasy. From the foundation of the world, the principal revelation that God made of himself was in the oneness of his nature and his monarchy over all. And herein the person of the Father was immediately represented with his power and authority; for he is the fountain and original of the Deity, the other persons as to their subsistence being of him: only, he did withal give out promises concerning the peculiar exhibition of the Son in the flesh in an appointed season, as also of the Holy Spirit, to be given by him in an especial manner. Hereby were their persons to be signally glorified in this world, it being the will of God that all “men should honor the Son as they honored the Father,” and the Holy Spirit in like manner. In this state of things, the only apostasy of the church could be polytheism and idolatry. Accordingly, so it came to pass. The church of Israel was continually prone to these abominations, so that scarcely a generation passed, or very few, wherein the body of the people did not more or less defile themselves with them. To wean and recover them from this sin was the principal end of the preaching of those prophets which God from time to time sent unto them, 2 Kings 17:13.

    And this also was the cause of all the calamities which befell them, and of all the judgments which God inflicted on them, as is testified in all the historical books of the Old Testament, and confirmed by instances innumerable. To put an end hereunto, God at length brought a total desolation upon the whole church, and caused the people to be carried into captivity out of their own land; and hereby it was so far effected that, upon their return, whatever other sins they fell into, yet they kept themselves from idols and idolatry, Ezekiel 16:41-43, 23:27, 48. And the reason hereof was, because the time was now drawing nigh wherein they were to be tried with another dispensation of God; — the Son of God was to be sent unto them in the flesh. To receive and obey him was now to be the principal instance and trial of their faith and obedience. They were no longer to be tried merely by their faith, whether they would own only the God of Israel, in opposition unto all false gods and idols, for that ground God had now absolutely won upon them; but now all is to turn on this hinge, whether they would receive the Son of God coming in the flesh, according to the promise. Here the generality of that church and people fell by their unbelief, apostatized from God, and became thereby neither church nor people, John 8:24. They being rejected, the Son of God calls and gathers another church, founding it on his own person with faith, and the profession of it therein, Matthew 16:18,19. In this new church, therefore, this foundation is fixed, and this ground made good, that Jesus Christ, the Son of God, is to be owned and honored as we honor the Father, 1 Corinthians 3:11; John 5:23. And herein all that are duly called Christians do agree, as the church of Israel did in one God after their return from the captivity of Babylon. But now the Lord Jesus Christ being ascended unto his Father, hath committed his whole affairs in the church and in the world unto the Holy Spirit, John 16:7-11. And it is on this design of God that the person of the Spirit may be singularly exalted in the church; unto whom they were so in the dark before, that some (none of the worst of them) professed they had not so much as heard whether there were any Holy Ghost or no, Acts 19:2, — that is, at least, as unto the peculiar dispensation of him then introduced in the church. Wherefore, the duty of the church now immediately respects the Spirit of God, who acts towards it in the name of the Father and of the Son; and with respect unto him it is that the church in its present state is capable of an apostasy from God. And whatever is found of this nature amongst any, here it hath its beginning; for the sin of despising his person and rejecting his work now is of the same nature with idolatry of old, and the Jews’ rejection of the person of the Son. And whereas there was a relief provided against these sins, because there was a new dispensation of the grace of God to ensue, in the evangelical work of the Holy Ghost, if men sin against him and his operations, containing the perfection and complement of God’s revelation of himself unto them, their condition is deplorable.

    It may be some will say and plead, that whatever is spoken of the Holy Ghost, his graces, gifts, and operations, did entirely belong unto the first times of the gospel, wherein they were manifested by visible and wonderful effects, — to those times they were confined; and, consequently, that we have no other interest or concern in them but as in a recorded testimony given of old unto the truth of the gospel. This is so, indeed, as unto his extraordinary and miraculous operations, but to confine his whole work thereunto is plainly to deny the truth of the promises of Christ, and to overthrow his church; for we shall make it undeniably evident that none can believe in Jesus Christ, or yield obedience unto him, or worship God in him, but by the Holy Ghost. And, therefore, if the whole dispensation of him and his communications unto the souls of men do cease, so doth all faith in Christ and Christianity also.

    On these and the like considerations it is that I have thought it necessary for myself, and unto the church of God, that the Scripture should be diligently searched in and concerning this great matter; for none can deny but that the glory of God, the honor of the gospel, the faith and obedience of the church, with the everlasting welfare of our own souls, are deeply concerned herein.

    The apostle Peter, treating about the great things of the gospel, taught by himself and the rest of the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ, tells those to whom he wrote that in what was so preached unto them they had not “followed cunningly-devised fables,” 2 Peter 1:16; for so were the “power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ” then reported to be in the world. What was preached concerning them was looked on as “cunninglydevised” and artificially-framed “fables,” to inveigle and allure the people.

    This the apostle gives his testimony against, and withal appeals unto the divine assurance which they had of the holy truths delivered unto them, verses 17-21. In like manner, our Lord Jesus Christ himself having preached the doctrine of regeneration unto Nicodemus, he calls it into question, as a thing incredible or unintelligible, John 3:4; for whose instruction and the rebuke of his ignorance, he lets him know that he spake nothing but what he brought with him from heaven, — from the eternal Fountain of goodness and truth, verses 11-13. It is fallen out not much otherwise in this matter.

    The doctrine concerning the Spirit of God, and his work on the souls of men, hath been preached in the world. What he doth in convincing men of sin; what in working godly sorrow and humiliation in them; what is the exceeding greatness of his power, which he puts forth in the regeneration and sanctification of the souls of men; what are the supplies of grace which he bestows on them that do believe; what assistance he gives unto them as the Spirit of grace and supplications, — hath been preached, taught, and pressed on the minds of them that attend unto the dispensation of the word of the gospel. Answerable hereunto, men have been urged to try, search, examine themselves, as to what of this work of the Holy Ghost they have found, observed, or had experience to have been effectually accomplished in or upon their own souls. And hereon they have been taught that the great concernments of their peace, comfort, and assurance, of their communion among themselves as the saints of God, with many other ends of their holy conversation, do depend. Nay, it is, and hath been constantly, taught them that if there be not an effectual work of the Holy Ghost upon their hearts, they “cannot enter into the kingdom of God.” Now, these things, and whatever is spoken in the explication of them, are by some called in question, if not utterly rejected; yea, some look on them as “cunningly-devised fables,” — things that some not long since invented, and others have propagated for their advantage.

    Others say that what is delivered concerning them is hardly, if at all, to be understood by rational men, being only empty speculations about things wherein Christian religion is little or not at all concerned. Whereas, therefore, many, very many, have received these things as sacred truths, and are persuaded that they have found them realized in their own souls, so that into their experience of the work of the Holy Spirit of God in them and upon them, according as it is declared in the word, all their consolation and peace with God is for the most part resolved, as that which gives them the best evidence of their interest in him who is their peace; and whereas, for the present, they do believe that unless these things are so in and with them, they have no foundation to build a hope of eternal life upon, — it cannot but be of indispensable necessity unto them to examine and search the Scripture diligently whether these things be so or no. For if there be no such work of the Spirit of God upon the hearts of men, and that indispensably necessary to their salvation; if there are no such assistances and supplies of grace needful unto every good duty as wherein they have been instructed, — then in the whole course of their profession they have only been seduced by “cunningly-devised fables,” their deceived hearts have fed upon ashes, and they are yet in their sins. It is, then, of no less consideration and importance than the eternal welfare of their souls immediately concerned therein can render it, that they diligently try, examine, and search into these things, by the safe and infallible touchstone and rule of the word, whereon they may, must, and ought, to venture their eternal condition. I know, indeed, that most believers are so far satisfied in the truth of these things and their own experience of them, that they will not be moved in the least by the oppositions which are made unto them and the scorn that is cast upon them; for “he that believeth on the Son of God hath the witness in himself,” 1 John 5:10: but yet, as Luke wrote his Gospel to Theophilus “that he might know the certainty of those things wherein he had been instructed,” Luke 1:4, — that is, to confirm him in the truth, by an addition of new degrees of assurance unto him, — so it is our duty to be so far excited by the clamorous oppositions that are made unto the truths which we profess, and in whose being such, we are as much concerned as our souls are worth, to compare them diligently with the Scripture, that we may be the more fully confirmed and established in them. And, upon the examination of the whole matter, I shall leave them to their option, as Elijah did of old: “If Jehovah be God, follow him; but if Baal be God, follow him.” If the things which the generality of professors do believe and acknowledge concerning the Spirit of God and his work on their hearts, his gifts and graces in the church, with the manner of their communication, be for the substance of them (wherein they all generally agree ) according to the Scripture, taught and revealed therein, on the same terms as by them received, then may they abide in the holy profession of them, and rejoice in the consolations they have received by them; but if these things, with those others which, in the application of them to the souls of men, are directly and necessarily deduced, and to be deduced from them, are all but vain and useless imaginations, it is high time the minds of men were disburdened of them.

    CHAPTER 2.

    THE NAME AND TITLES OF THE HOLY SPIRIT. Of the name of the Holy Spirit — Various uses of the words jæWy and pneu~ma jæWy for the wind or anything invisible with a sensible agitation, Amos 4:13 — Mistakes of the ancients rectified by Hierom jWr metaphorically for vanity, metonymically for the part or quarter of anything; for our vital breath, the rational soul, the affections, angels good and bad — Ambiguity from the use of the word, how to be removed — Rules concerning the Holy Spirit — The name “Spirit,” how peculiar and appropriate unto him — Why he is called the “Holy Spirit” — Whence called the “Good Spirit,” the “Spirit of God,” the “Spirit of the Son” — Acts 2:33, 1 Peter 1:10,11, explained — 1 John 4:3, vindicated. BEFORE we engage into the consideration of the things themselves concerning which we are to treat, it will be necessary to speak something unto the name whereby the third person in the Trinity is commonly known and peculiarly called in the Scripture. This is the “Spirit,” or the “Holy Spirit,” or the “Holy Ghost,” as we usually speak. And this I shall do that we be not deceived with the homonymy of the word, nor be at a loss in the intention of those places of Scripture where it is used unto other purposes: for it is so that the name of the second person, oJ Lo>gov , “the Word,” and of the third to< Pneu~ma , “the Spirit,” are often applied to signify other things; I mean, those words are so. And some make their advantages of the ambiguous use of them. But the Scripture is able of itself to manifest its own intention and meaning unto humble and diligent inquirers into it.

    It is, then, acknowledged that the use of the words jæWr and pneu~ma in the Old Testament and New is very various; yet are they the words whereby alone the Holy Spirit of God is denoted. Their peculiar signification, therefore, in particular places is to be collected and determined from the subject-matter treated of in them, and other especial circumstances of them. This was first attempted by the most learned Didymus of Alexandria, whose words, therefore, I have set down at large, and shall cast his observations into a more perspicuous method, with such additions as are needful for the farther clearing of the whole matter. First, In general, jæWr and pneu~ma signify a wind or spirit, — that is, anything which moves and is not seen. So the air in a violent agitation is called jæWr : Genesis 8:1, µyæhiloa’ rbe[\yæwæ År,a;h;Al[æ jæWr ; — “And God made a wind,” or “spirit,” that is, a strong and mighty wind, “to pass over the earth,” for the driving and removal of the waters. So pneu~ma is used, John 3:8, To< pneu~ma o[pou qe>lei pnei~ k.t.l , — “The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, nor whither it goeth;” which is a proper description of this first signification of the word. It is an agitation of the air which is unseen. So Psalm 1:4. And in this sense, sometimes it signifies a “great and strong wind,” — that is, qz;j;w] hl;wOdN] jæWr , 1 Kings 19:11; and sometimes a cool and soft wind, or a light easy agitation of the air, such as often ariseth in the evenings of the spring or summer. So Genesis 3:8, “God walked in the garden” µwOYhæ jæWrl] , “in the cool of the day;” that is, when the evening air began to breathe gently, and moderate the heat of the day. So in the poet, — “Solis ad occasum, quum frigidus aëra vesper Temperat.” — Virg. Geor. 3:336. “At the going down of the sun, when the cold evening tempers the heat of the air.” And some think this to be the sense of that place, <19A404> Psalm 104:4, “Who maketh his angels twOjWr , spirits,” — swift, agile, powerful as mighty winds. But the reader may consult our Exposition on Hebrews 1:7.

    This is one signification of the word jæWr , or this is one thing denoted by it in the Scripture. So, among many other places, expressly Amos 4:13, “For, lo,” jæWr areboW µyrih; rxewOy , he that formeth the mountains, and createth the spirit,” that is, “the wind.” The LXX. render this place, Sterew~n bronthzwn pneu~ma — “Who establisheth the thunder, and createth the spirit;” though some copies read, ta< o]rh , “the mountains.” And the next words in the text, wOjyCiAhmæ µd;a;l] dyGmæW, f19 — “And declareth unto man what is his thought,” they render, Kai< ajpagge>llwn eijv ajnqrw>pouv tomen his Christ,” or his Anointed, or his Messiah; for they took wOjyCiQhmæ for wOjyvim] “by inadvertency, and not for want of points or vowels as some imagine, seeing the mistake consists in the casting out of a letter itself. And thence the old Latin translation renders the words, “Firmans tonitruum, et creans Spiritum, et annuncians in homines Christum suum;” which Hierom rectified into “Formans montes, et creans ventum, et annuntians homini eloquium suum,” discovering in his comment the mistake of the LXX. But it is certain that, from the ambiguity of the word jæWr in this place, with the corrupt translations making mention of Christ in the next words, some who of old denied the deity of the Holy Spirit mightily insisted on it to prove him a creature; as may be seen in Didymus, Ambrose, Hierom, Hilary, and the ancients generally. But the context determines the signification of the word beyond all just exceptions.

    It is the power of God in making and disposing of things here below, whether dreadful for their greatness and height, as the mountains; or mighty and effectual in their operations, as the wind; or secret in their conceptions, as the thoughts of men; or stable in their continuance, as the night and day, the evening and morning, without the least respect to Christ or the Spirit, that it treateth of.

    And I cannot but observe from hence the great necessity there is of searching the original text in the interpretation of the Scriptures, as it might be evidenced by a thousand other instances; but one we may take from two great and learned men, who were contemporaries in the Latin church, in their thoughts on this place.

    The one is Ambrose, who, interpreting these words in his second book, De Spiritu Sancto, lib. 2 cap. 6, being deceived by the corrupt translation mentioned, “Annuncians in homines Christum suum,” is forced to give a very strained exposition of that which, in truth, is not in the text, and to relieve himself also with another corruption in the same place, where “forming the mountains” is rendered by “establishing the thunder;” and yet, when he hath done all, he can scarce free himself of the objection about the creation of the Spirit, which he designs to answer. His words are, “Siquis propheticum dictum, ideo derivandum putet ad interpretationem Spiritus Sancti; quia habet, ‘annuncians in homines Christum suum,’ is ad incarnationis Dominicae mysteria dictum facilius derivabit. Nam si te movet quia Spiritum dixit, et hoc non putas derivandum ad mysterium assumptionis humanae; prosequere scripturas et invenies optime congruere de Christo, de quo bene convenit aestimari, quia firmavit tonitrua adventu suo; vim videlicet et sonum coelestium scripturarum; quarum velut quodam tonitru mentes nostrae redduntur attonitae, ut timere discamus, et reverntiam coelestibus deferamus oraculis. Denique, in Evangelio fratres Domini filii tonitru dicebantur. Et cum vox Patris facta esset dicentis ad Filim, ‘Et honorificavi te, et iterum honorificabo,’ Judaei dicebant, ‘Tonitruum factum est illi.’” And hereon, with some observations to the same purpose, he adds, “Ergo tonitrua ad sermones Domini retulit, quorum in omnem terram exivit sonus; Spiritum autem hoc loco animam, quam suscepit rationabilem et perfectam intelligimus.”

    The substance of his discourse is, that treating of Christ (who indeed is neither mentioned nor intended in the text), he speaks of “confirming the thunder” (which nowhere here appears), by which the sound of the Scriptures and preaching of the word is intended; the spirit that was created being the human soul of Jesus Christ. Nor was he alone in this interpretation. Didym. lib. 2 de Spiritu Sancto, Athanas. ad Serapion, Basil. lib. 4. contra Eunom., amongst the Grecians, are in like manner entangled with this corruption of the text; as was also Concil. Sardicen. in Socrat. lib. 2 cap. 20.

    The other person intended is Hierom, who, consulting the original, as he was well able to do, first translated the words, “Quia ecce formans montes, et creans ventum, et annuncians homini eloquium suum,” declares the mistake of the LXX. and the occasion of it: — “Pro montibus qui Hebraicè dicuntur µyirh; soli LXX bronth>n , id est, tontitruum, verterunt. Cur autem illi Spiritum et nos dixerimus ventum, qui Hebraice jæWr vocatur, causa manifesta est: quodque sequitur, ‘Annuncians homini eloquium suum,’ LXX. transtulerunt, ‘ Apagge>llwn eijv ajnqrw>pouv to, verbi similitudine, et ambiguitate decepti.”

    So he shows that it is not wOjyvim] in the text, but wOjyCiAhmæ ; — that is, saith he, “juxta Aquilam, oJmili>an aujtou~ Symmachum, to< fw>hma aujtou~ juxta Theodotionem, togon aujtou~ juxta quintam editionem, than aujtou~ .

    And as jæyci , whence the word is, signifies both to meditate and to speak, so the word itself intends a conceived thought, to be spoken afterward.

    And that jæyci here is reciprocal, not relative. And to this purpose is his ensuing exposition, “Qui confirmat montes, ad cujus vocem coelorum cardines et terrae fundamenta quatiuntur. Ipse qui creat spiritum, quem in hoc loco non Spiritum Sanctum, ut haeretici suspicantur, sed venture intelligimus, sive spiritum hominis, annuncians homini eloquium ejus, qui cogitationum secreta cognoscit,” Hieron. in loc.

    Secondly, Because the wind, on the account of its unaccountable variation, inconstancy, and changes, is esteemed vain, not to be observed or trusted unto, — whence the wise man tells us that “he that observeth the wind shall not sow,” Ecclesiastes 11:4, — the word is used metaphorically to signify vanity: Ecclesiastes 5:16, “What profit hath he that hath laboured jæWrl; , for the wind?” So Micah 2:11, “If a man walk” rq,v,wO; jæWr , “with the wind and falsehood ;” — that is, in vanity, pretending to a spirit of prophecy; and falsehood, vainly, foolishly, falsely boasting. So Job 15:2, “Should a wise man utter” jæWr t[ædæ “knowledge of wind?” vain words, with a pretense of knowledge and wisdom; and he calls them jæWr yreb]di , “words of wind,” chap. 16:3. So also Jeremiah 5:13, “And the prophets shall become jæWrl] , wind,” or be vain, foolish, uncertain, and false, in their predictions. But pneu~ma is not used thus metaphorically in the New Testament.

    Thirdly, By a metonymy, also, it signifies any part or quarter, as we say, of the world from whence the wind blows; as also a part of anything divided into four sides or quarters. So Jeremiah 52:23, “There were ninety and six pomegranates hj;Wr , towards a wind;” that is, on the one side of the chapiter that was above the pillars in the temple. Ezekiel 5:12, “I will scatter a third part” jæWr lk;l] , “into all the winds,” or all parts of the earth. Hence, the “four quarters” of a thing lying to the four parts of the world are called its four winds, twOjWr [Bær]aæ , 1 Chronicles 9:24; whence are the te>ssarev a]nemoi , “the four winds,” in the New Testament, Matthew 24:31. This is the use of the word in general with respect unto things natural and ina nimate, and every place where it is so used gives it [a] determinate sense.

    Again, [Fourthly], These words are used for anything that cannot be seen or touched, be it in itself martial and corporeal, or absolutely spiritual and immaterial. So the vital breath which we and other living creatures breathe is called: Everything wherein was jæWrAtmæv]ni µyYijæ , “the breath of the spirit of life,” Genesis 7:22, — that vital breath which our lives are maintained by in respiration. So <19D517> Psalm 135:17; Job 19:17; which is a thing material or corporeal. But most frequently it denotes things purely spiritual and immaterial, as in finite substances it signifies the rational soul of man: Psalm 31:5, “Into thine hand I commit” yjiWr , that is, “my spirit.” They are the words whereby our Savior committed his departing soul into the hands of his Father, Luke 23:46, to< pneu~ma mou . So <19E604> Psalm 146:4, wOjWr axeTe , — “His breath,” say we, “goeth forth; he returneth to his earth.” It is his soul and its departure from the body that is intended. This is µd;a;h; yneB] jæWr , that “spirit of the sons of man that goeth upward,” when the “spirit of a beast goeth downward to the earth,” or turneth to corruption, Ecclesiastes 3:21: see chapter 8:8, 12:7.

    Hence, — Fifthly, By a metonymy also, it is taken for the affections of the mind or soul of man, and that whether they be good or evil: Genesis 45:27, “The spirit of Jacob revived;” he began to take heart and be of good courage. Ezekiel 13:3, “The prophets that walk” µj;Wr rjæaæ , “after their own spirit” — that is, their own desires and inclinations, — when, indeed, they had no vision, but spake what they had a mind unto. Numbers 14:24, Caleb is said to have “another spirit” than the murmuring people, — another mind, will, purpose, or resolution. It is taken for prudence, Joshua 5:1; anger, or the irascible faculty, Ecclesiastes 7:9 fury, Zechariah 6:8. “He shall cut off the spirit of princes” [ Psalm 76:12]; that is, their pride, insolency, and contempt of others. Pneu~ma in the New Testament frequently intends the intellectual part of the mind or soul, and that as it is active, or in action, Luke 1:47; Romans 1:9; — and ofttimes is taken for the mind in all its inclinations, in its whole habitual bent and design, 1 Thessalonians 5:23. [Sixthly], Angels also are called spirits: — good angels, <19A404> Psalm 104:4; (and it may be an angel is intended, 1 Kings 18:12;) and evil angels or devils, 1 Kings 22:21,22; for that spirit who appeared before the Lord, and offered himself to be a lying spirit in the mouths of Ahab’s prophets, was no other but he who appeared before God, Job 1:6, who is called “Satan.” These in the New Testament are called “unclean spirits,” Matthew 10:1; and the observation of the ancients, that Satan is not called a spirit absolutely, but with an addition or mark of distinction, holds only in the New Testament. And because evil spirits are wont to torment the minds and bodies of men, therefore evil thoughts, disorders of mind, wicked purposes, disquieting and vexing the soul, arising from or much furthered by melancholy distempers, are called, it may be, sometimes “an evil spirit.” The case of Saul shall be afterward considered.

    In such variety are these words used and applied in the Scripture, because of some very general notions wherein the things intended do agree. For the most part, there is no great difficulty in discovering the especial meaning of them, or what it is they signify in the several places where they occur.

    Their design and circumstances as to the subject-matter treated of determine the signification. And notwithstanding the ambiguous use of these words in the Old and New Testament, there are two things clear and evident unto our purpose: — First, That there is in the holy Scriptures a full, distinct revelation or declaration of the Spirit, or the Spirit of God, f21 as one singular, and every way distinct from everything else that is occasionally or constantly signified or denoted by that word “Spirit.” And this not only a multitude of particular places gives testimony unto, but also the whole course of the Scripture supposeth, as that without an acknowledgment whereof nothing else contained in it can be understood or is of any use at all; for we shall find this doctrine to be the very life and soul which quickens the whole from first to last. Take away the work and powerful efficacy of the Holy Spirit from the administration of it, and it will prove but a dead letter, of no saving advantage to the souls of men; and take away the doctrine concerning him from the writing of it, and the whole will be unintelligible and useless. Secondly, That whatever is affirmed of this Holy Spirit, the Spirit of God, it all relates either to his person or his operations, and these operations of his being various, are sometimes, by a metonymy, called “spirit;” whereof afterward. I shall not, therefore, need to prove that there is a Holy Spirit distinct from all other spirits whatever, and from everything else that on several occasions is signified by that name; for this is acknowledged by all that acknowledge the Scriptures, yea, it is so by Jews and Mohammedans, as well as all sorts of Christians. And, indeed, all those false apprehensions concerning him which have at this day any countenance given unto them may be referred unto two heads: — 1. That of the modern Jews, who affirm the Holy Ghost to be the influential power of God; which conceit is entertained and diligently promoted by the Socinians. 2. That of the Mohammedans, who make him an eminent angel, and sometimes say it is Gabriel; which, being traduced from the Macedonians of old, hath found some defenders and promoters in our days.

    This, then, being the name of him concerning whom we treat, some things concerning it and the use of it, as peculiarly applied unto him, are to be premised: for sometimes he is called the “Spirit” absolutely; sometimes the “Holy Spirit,” or, as we speak, the “Holy Ghost;” sometimes the “Spirit of God,” the “good Spirit of God,” the “Spirit of truth” and “holiness;” sometimes the “Spirit of Christ” or “of the Son.” The first absolutely used denotes his person; the additions express his properties and relation unto the other persons.

    In the name Spirit two things are included: — First, His nature or essence, — namely, that he is a pure, spiritual, or immaterial substance; for neither the Hebrews nor the Greeks can express such a being in its subsistence but by jæWr and pneu~ma , a spirit. Nor is this name, firstly, given unto the Holy Spirit in allusion unto the wind in its subtlety, agility, and efficacy; for these things have respect only unto his operations, wherein, from some general appearances, his works and effects are likened unto the wind and its effects, John 3:8. But it is his substance or being which is first intended in this name. So it is said of God, John 4:24, Pneu~ma oJ Qeo>v — “God is a Spirit;” that is, he is of a pure, spiritual, immaterial nature, not confined unto any place, and so not regarding one more than another in his worship; as is the design of the place to evince. It will therefore be said, that on this account the name of “Spirit” is not peculiar unto the third person, seeing it contains the description of that nature which is the same in them all; for whereas it is said, “God is a Spirit,” it is not spoken of this or that person, but of the nature of God abstractedly. I grant that so it is; and therefore the name “Spirit” is not, in the first place, characteristical of the third person in the Trinity, but denotes that nature whereof each person is partaker. But, moreover, as it is peculiarly and constantly ascribed unto him, it declares his especial manner and order of existence; so that wherever there is mention of the “Holy Spirit,” his relation unto the Father and Son is included therein; for he is the Spirit of God. And herein there is an allusion to somewhat created, — not, as I said, to the wind in general, unto whose agility and invisibility he is compared in his operations, but unto the breath of man; for as the vital breath of a man hath a continual emanation from him, and yet is never separated utterly from his person or forsaketh him, so doth the Spirit of the Father and the Son proceed from them by a continual divine emanation, still abiding one with them: for all those allusions are weak and imperfect wherein substantial things are compared with accidental, infinite things with finite, and those that are eternal with those that are temporary.

    Hence, their disagreement is infinitely more than their agreement; yet such allusions doth our weakness need instruction from and by. Thus he is called wyPi jæWr Psalm 33:6, “The Spirit” or “breath of the mouth of the LORD,” or “of his nostrils;” as Psalm 18:15, wherein there is an eminent allusion unto the breath of a man. Of the manner of this proceeding and emanation of the Spirit from the Father and the Son, so far as it is revealed, and as we are capable of a useful apprehension of it, I have treated elsewhere. And from hence, or the subsistence of the Holy Spirit in an eternal emanation from the Father and Son, as the breath of God, did our Savior signify his communication of his gifts unto his disciples by breathing on them: John 20:22, ‘ Enefu>shse and because in our first creation it is said of Adam that God µyYijæ tmæv]ni wyp;aæB] jPæyi , “breathed into his nostrils the breath of life,” Genesis 2:7. He hath the same appellation with respect unto God, Psalm 18:15. Thus is he called the “Spirit.” And because, as we observed before, the word pneu~ma is variously used, Didymus, de Spiritu Sancto, lib. 3., supposeth that the prefixing of the article to< doth distinguish the signification, and confine it to the Holy Ghost in the New Testament. Ofttimes no doubt it doth so, but not always, as is manifest from John 3:8, where to< is joined with pneu~ma , and yet only signifies “the wind.” But the subject treated of, and what is affirmed of him, will sufficiently determine the signification of the word, where he is called absolutely “THE SPIRIT.”

    Again; He is called, by way of eminency, the Holy Spirit , or the Holy Ghost . This is the most usual appellation of him in the New Testament; and it is derived from the Old: Psalm 51, Úv]d]q; jæWr , “The Spirit of thy Holiness,” or “Thy Holy Spirit” Isaiah 63:10,11, wOvd]q; jæWr , “The Spirit of his Holiness,” or “His Holy Spirit.” Hence are vwOdQ;hæ jæWr and vd,Qohæ jæWr , “The Holy Spirit,” and “The Spirit of Holiness,” in common use among the Jews. In the New Testament he is to< Pneu~ma to< Agion , “That Holy Spirit.” And we must inquire into the special reasons of this adjunct. Some suppose it is only from his peculiar work of sanctifying us, or making us holy: for this effect of sanctification is his peculiar work, and that of what sort soever it be; whether it consist in a separation from things profane and common, unto holy uses and services, or whether it be the real infusion and operation of holiness in men, it is from him in an especial manner. And this also manifesteth him to be God, for it is God alone who sanctifieth his people: Leviticus 20:8, “I am Jehovah which sanctify you.” And God in that work ascribes unto himself the title of Holy in an especial manner, and as such would have us to consider him: chapter 21:8, “I the LORD, which sanctify you, am holy.” And this may be one reason of the frequent use of this property with reference unto the Spirit.

    But this is not the whole reason of this name and appellation: for where he is first so mentioned, he is called “The Spirit of God’s Holiness,” Psalm 51:11, Isaiah 63:10,11; and in the New Testament absolutely “The Spirit of Holiness,” Romans 1:4 And this respects his nature , in the first place, and not merely his operations. As God, then, absolutely is called “Holy,” “The Holy One,” and “The Holy One of Israel,” being therein described by that glorious property of his nature whereby he is “glorious in holiness,” Exodus 15:11, and whereby he is distinguished from all false gods, (“Who is like unto thee, O Jehovah, among the gods? who is like thee, glorious in holiness?”) so is the Spirit called “Holy” to denote the holiness of his nature. And on this account is the opposition made between him and the unholy or unclean spirit: Mark 3:29,30, “He that shall blaspheme against the Holy Ghost hath never forgiveness: because they said, He hath an unclean spirit.”

    And herein first his personality is asserted; for the unclean spirit is a person, and if the Spirit of God were only a quality or accident, as some fancy and dream, there could no comparative opposition be made between him and this unclean spirit, — that is, the devil. So also are they opposed with respect unto their natures. His nature is holy, whereas that of the unclean spirit is evil and perverse. This is the foundation of his being called “Holy,” even the eternal glorious holiness of his nature. And on this account he is so styled also with respect unto all his operations; for it is not only with regard unto the particular work of regeneration and sanctification, or making of us holy, but unto all his works and operations, that he is so termed: for he being the immediate operator of all divine works that outwardly are of God, and they being in themselves all holy, be they of what kind soever, he is called the “Holy Spirit.” Yea, he is so called to attest and witness that all his works, all the works of God, are holy, although they may be great and terrible, and such as to corrupt reason may have another appearance; in all which we are to acquiesce in this, that the “Holy One in the midst of us will do no iniquity,” [ Hosea 11:9], Zephaniah 3:5. The Spirit of God, then, is thus frequently and almost constantly called “Holy,” to attest that all the works of God, whereof he is the immediate operator, are holy: for it is the work of the Spirit to harden and blind obstinate sinners, as well as to sanctify the elect; and his acting in the one is no less holy than in the other, although holiness be not the effect of it in the objects. So, when he came to declare his dreadful work of the final hardening and rejection of the Jews, — one of the most tremendous effects of divine Providence, a work which, for the strangeness of it, men “would in no wise believe though it were declared unto them,” Acts 13:41, — he was signally proclaimed Holy by the seraphims that attended his throne, Isaiah 6:3, 9-12; John 12:40; Acts 28:25,26.

    There are, indeed, some actions on men and in the world that are wrought, by God’s permission and in his righteous judgment, by evil spirits; whose persons and actings are placed in opposition to the Spirit of God. So Samuel 16:14, 15, “The Spirit of the LORD departed from Saul, and an evil spirit from the LORD troubled him. And Saul’s servants said unto him, Behold now, an evil spirit from God troubleth thee.”

    So also verse 23, “The evil spirit from God was upon Saul.” So chap. 18:10, 19:9. This spirit is called, h[;r; µyhiloa’AjæWr , — an evil spirit of God,” chapter 16:15; and absolutely µyjila’AjæWr — “a spirit of God,” verse 23, where we have supplied “evil” in the translation. But these expressions are to be regulated and explained by verse 14, where he is called hwO;hy] taeme h[;r;AjæWr , — “an evil spirit from the LORD;” that is, appointed and commissioned by him for the punishing and terrifying of Saul: for as the Spirit of the Lord departed from him, by withdrawing his assistance and influential operations, whereby he had wrought in him those gifts and abilities of mind which fitted him unto the discharge of his kingly office, upon the first impressions whereof he was “turned into another man” from what he was in his private condition, chap. 10:6-9; so the evil spirit came upon him to excite out of his own adust melancholy, discontents, fears, a sense of guilt, as also to impress terrifying thoughts and apprehensions on his imagination; for so it is said,” An evil spirit from the LORD” WTjæ[\bi , chapter 16:14, “terrified him,” frightened him with dreadful agitations of mind. And, that we may touch a little on this by the way, the foundation of this trouble and distress of Saul lay in himself: for as I do grant that he was sometimes under an immediate agitation of body and mind from the powerful impressions of the devil upon him, — for under them it is said he “prophesied in the midst of the house,” 1 Samuel 18:10, which argues an extraordinary and involuntary effect upon him, — yet principally he wrought by the excitation and provocation of his personal distempers, moral and natural; for these have in themselves a great efficacy in cruciating the minds of guilty persons. So Tacitus observes out of Plato, Annal. lib. 6:6, “Neque frustra praestantissimus sapientiae firmare solitus est, si recludantur tyrannorum mentes, posse aspici laniatus et ictus; quando, ut corpora verberibus, ita saevitia, libidine, malis consultis, animus dilaceretur;” — “The most eminent wise man was not wont in vain to affirm, that if the minds of tyrants were laid open and discovered, it would be seen how they were cruciated and punished; seeing that as the body is rent and torn by stripes, so is the mind by cruelty, lusts, evil counsels and undertakings.”

    So he, as I suppose from Plato de Repub. lib. 9., where Socrates disputes sundry things to that purpose. And another Roman historian gives us a signal instance hereof in Jugurtha, after he had contracted the guilt of many horrible wickednesses. f28 And yet this work in itself is of the same kind with what God sometimes employs holy angels about, because it is the execution of his righteous judgments. So it was a “watcher and an holy one” that in such a case smote Nebuchadnezzar with a sudden madness and frenzy, Daniel 4:18-17.

    To return; As he is called the Holy, so he is the Good Spirit of God: <19E310> Psalm 143:10, ynijen]Tæ hb;wOf Új\Wri ; — “Thy Spirit is good; lead me into the land of uprightness;” so ours: — rather, “Thy good Spirit shall lead me;” or, as Junius, “Spiritu tuo bone deduc me,” — “Lead me by thy good Spirit.” The Chaldee here adds Úv,d]wOq , — “The good Spirit of thy holiness” or “Thy holy good Spirit.” Didymus, lib. 2 de Spir. Sanc., says that some copies here read to< a[gion , a remembrance whereof is in the MS. of Thecla, and not elsewhere. So Nehemiah 9:20, “Thou gavest them” hb;wOFhæ Új\Wri , “thy good Spirit to instruct them.” And he is called so principally from his nature, which is essentially good, as “there is none good but one, that is, God,” Matthew 19:17; as also from his operations, which are all good as they are holy; and unto them that believe are full of goodness in their effects. Crell. Prolegom., p. 7, distinguisheth between this good Spirit and the Holy Spirit, or the Holy Ghost; for this good Spirit he would confine unto the Old Testament, making it the author or cause of those gifts of wisdom, courage, prudence, and government, that were granted unto many of the people of old. So it is said of Bezaleel, that he was “filled with the Spirit of God, in wisdom, and understanding, and in knowledge,” Exodus 31:3; so 35:31; — “That is,” saith he, “with this ‘good Spirit of God.’” So also, it is pretended, in all those places where the Spirit of God is said to “come on” men to enable them unto some great and extraordinary work, as Judges 3:10. But this is plainly to contradict the apostle, who tells us that there are, indeed, various operations, but one Spirit; and that the one and self-same Spirit worketh all these things as he pleaseth, Corinthians 12:6,11. And if from every different or distinct effect of the Spirit of God we must multiply spirits, and assign every one of them to a distinct spirit, no man will know what to make of the Spirit of God at last. Probably, we shall have so many feigned spirits as to lose the only true one. As to this particular instance, David prays that God would “lead him by his good Spirit,” <19E310> Psalm 143:10. Now, certainly, this was no other but that Holy Spirit which he prays in another place that the Lord would not take from him: Psalm 51:11, “Take not thy Holy Spirit from me;” which is confessed to be the Holy Ghost. This he also mentions, Samuel 23:2, “The Spirit of the LORD spake by me, and his word was in my tongue.” And what Spirit this was Peter declares, 2 Epist. 1:21, “Holy men of God spake in old time as they were moved by the Holy Ghost.” So vain is this pretense.

    Again; He is commonly called the Spirit of God, and the Spirit of the Lord; so, in the first mention of him, Genesis 1:2, µyhiloa, jæWr , “The Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.” And I doubt not but that the name µyhiloa, , “Elohim,” which includes a plurality in the same nature, is used in the creation and the whole description of it to intimate the distinction of the divine persons; for presently upon it the name Jehovah is mentioned also, chap. 2:4, but so as Elohim is joined with it. But that name is not used in the account given us of the work of creation, because it hath respect only unto the unity of the essence of God. Now, the Spirit is called the “Spirit of God” originally and principally, as the Son is called the “Son of God;” for the name of “God” in those enunciations is taken personally for the Father, — that is, God the Father, the Father of Christ, and our Father, John 20:17. And he is thus termed uJpostatikw~v, upon the account of the order and nature of personal subsistence and distinction in the holy Trinity. The person of the Father being “fons et origo Trinitatis,” the Son is from him by eternal generation, and is therefore his Son, the Son of God; whose denomination as the Father is originally from hence, even the eternal generation of the Son. So is the person of the Holy Spirit from him by eternal procession or emanation. Hence is that relation of his to God even the Father, whence he is called the “Spirit of God.”

    And he is not only called Pneu~ma tou~ Qeou~, the “Spirit of God,” but Pneu~ma to< ejk tou~ Qeou~ , “the Spirit that is of God,” which proceedeth from him as a distinct person. This, therefore, arising from and consisting in his proceeding from him, he is called, metaphorically, “The breath of his mouth,” as proceeding from him by an eternal spiration. On this foundation and supposition he is also called, secondly, “The Spirit of God” diakritikw~v, to difference him from all other spirits whatever; as, thirdly, also, because he is promised, given, and sent of God, for the accomplishment of his whole will and pleasure towards us. The instances hereof will be afterward considered. But these appellations of him have their foundation in his eternal relation unto the Father, before mentioned.

    On the same account originally, he is also called the Spirit of the Son: “God hath sent forth the Spirit of the Son into your hearts,” Galatians 4:6; — and the Spirit of Christ: “What time the Spirit of Christ which was in them did signify,” 1 Peter 1:11.

    So Romans 8:9, “But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.” f31 The Spirit, therefore, of God and the Spirit of Christ are one and the same; for that hypothetical proposition, “If any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his,” is an inference taken from the words foregoing, “If so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you.” And this Spirit of Christ, verse 11, is said to be the “Spirit of him that raised up Christ from the dead.” Look, then, in what sense he is said to be the Spirit of God, — that is, of the Father, — in the same he is said to be the Spirit of the Son. And this is because he proceedeth from the Son also; and for no other reason can he be so called, at least not without the original and formal reason of that appellation. Secondarily, I confess he is called the “Spirit of Christ” because promised by him, sent by him, and that to make effectual and accomplish his work towards the church. But this he could not be unless he had antecedently been the Spirit of the Son by his proceeding from him also: for the order of the dispensation of the divine persons towards us ariseth from the order of their own subsistence in the same divine essence; and if the Spirit did proceed only from the person of the Father, he could not be promised, sent, or given by the Son. Consider, therefore, the human nature of Christ in itself and abstractedly, and the Spirit cannot be said to be the Spirit of Christ; for it was anointed and endowed with gifts and graces by him, as we shall show. And if from hence he may be said to be the Spirit of Christ, without respect unto his proceeding from him as the Son of God, then he may be also said to be the Spirit of every believer who hath received the unction, of is anointed with his gifts and graces; for although believers are so, as to measure and degree, unspeakably beneath what Christ was, who received not the Spirit by measure, yet as he is the head and they are the members of the same mystical body, their unction by the Spirit is of the same kind. But now the Spirit of God may not be said to be the Spirit of this or that man who hath received of his gifts and graces. David prays, “Take not thy Holy Spirit from me,” — not “my Holy Spirit.” And he is distinguished from our spirits even as they are sanctified by him: Romans 8:16, “The Spirit himself beareth witness with our spirit.” No more, then, can he be said to be the Spirit of Christ merely upon the account of his communications unto him, although in a degree above all others inconceivably excellent; for with respect hereunto he is still called the Spirit of God or the Father, who sent him, and anointed the human nature of Christ with him.

    It will be said, perhaps, that he is called the “Spirit of Christ” because he is promised, given, and poured out by him. So Peter speaks, Acts 2:33, “Having received of the Father the promise of the Holy Ghost, he hath shed forth this, which ye now see and hear.”

    But in this regard, namely, as given by Christ the mediator, he is expressly called the Spirit of the Father; he was given as the promise of the Father: for so he is introduced speaking, verse 17, “It shall come to pass in the last days, saith God, I will pour out of my Spirit on all flesh.” And so our Savior tells his disciples that he would “pray the Father, and he should give them another Comforter, even the Spirit of truth,” John 14:16,17.

    Nor is he otherwise the Spirit of Christ, originally and formally, but as he is the Spirit of God, — that is, as Christ is God also. On this supposition I grant, as before, that he may consequently be called the “Spirit of Christ,” because promised and sent by him, because doing his work, and communicating his grace, image, and likeness to the elect.

    And this is yet more plain, 1 Peter 1:10,11, “Of which salvation the prophets have inquired and searched diligently, who prophesied of the grace that should come unto you: searching what, or what manner of time the Spirit of Christ which was in them did signify.”

    And this Spirit is said absolutely to be the “Holy Ghost,” 2 Peter 1:21.

    So, then, the Spirit that was in the prophets of old, in all ages since the world began, before the incarnation of the Son of God, is called the “Spirit of Christ,” — that is, of him who is so. Now, this could not be because he was anointed by that Spirit, or because he gave it afterward to his disciples; for his human nature did not exist in the time of their prophesying. Those, indeed, who receive him after the unction of the human nature of Christ may be said in some sense to receive the Spirit of Christ, because they are made partakers of the same Spirit with him, to the same ends and purposes, according to their measure; but this cannot be so with respect unto them who lived and prophesied by him, and died long before his incarnation. Wherefore, it is pleaded by those who oppose both the deity of Christ and the Spirit, which are undeniably here attested unto, that the Spirit here, whereby they cannot deny the Holy Ghost to be intended, is called the “Spirit of Christ,” because the prophets of old, who spake by him, did principally prophesy concerning Christ and his grace, and delivered great mysteries concerning them. So Christ is made in this place the object of the Spirit’s teaching, and not the author of his sending! So Crell. Prolegom., pp. 13, 14. But why, then, is he not called the “Spirit of God” also on this reason, because the prophets that spake by him treated wholly of God, the things and the will of God? This they will not say, for they acknowledge him to be the “virtue and power of God, inherent in him and proceeding from him.” But, then, whereas God even the Father is a person, and Christ is a person, and the Spirit is said to be the “Spirit of God” and the” Spirit of Christ,” whence doth it appear that the same expression must have different interpretations, and that the Spirit is called the “Spirit of God” because he is so, and proceedeth from him, but the “Spirit of Christ” because he is not so, but only treateth of him? The answer is ready, — namely, “Because the Father is God, but Christ is not, and therefore could not give the Spirit when he was not.” This is an easy answer, — namely, to deny a fundamental truth, and to set up that denial in an opposition unto a clear testimony given unto it. But the truth is, this pretended sense leaves no sense at all in the words: for if the Spirit which was in the prophets be called the “Spirit of Christ” only because he did beforehand declare the things of Christ, — that is, his “sufferings and the glory that did follow,” — and that be the sole reason of that denomination, then the sense or importance of the words is this, “Searching what or what manner of time the Spirit — ‘which did signify when it testified beforehand the sufferings of Christ’ — which was in them did signify when he testified beforehand the sufferings of Christ;” for according to this interpretation, the Spirit of Christ is nothing but the Spirit as testifying beforehand of him, and thence alone is he so called, — the absurdity whereof is apparent unto all.

    But countenance is endeavored unto this wresting of the Scripture from 1 John 4:3, “Every spirit that confesseth not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God: and this is that of antichrist, whereof ye have heard that it should come; and even now already is it in the world;” — for say some, “The spirit of antichrist is said to be in the world, when antichrist was not as yet come.” But the spirit here intended is not called the spirit of antichrist because it declared and foretold the things of antichrist before his coming; on which account alone they allow the Spirit of God in the prophets of old to be called the “Spirit of Christ:” they have, therefore, no countenance from this place, which fails them in the principal thing they would prove by it. Again, supposing these words, “Whereof ye have heard that it should come, and even now already is it in the world,” are to be interpreted of the spirit mentioned, and not of antichrist himself, yet no more can be intended but that the false teachers and seducers which were then in the world acted with the same spirit as antichrist should do at his coming; and so there is no conformity between these expressions. Besides, the spirit of antichrist was then in the world, as was antichrist himself. So far as his spirit was then in the world, so far was he so also; for antichrist and his spirit cannot be separated. Both he and it were then in the world in their forerunners, who opposed the truth of the gospel about the incarnation of the Son of God and his suffferings.

    And, indeed, the spirit of antichrist in this place is no more but his doctrine , — antichristian doctrine, which is to be tried and rejected.

    Neither is any singular person intended by antichrist, but a mysterious opposition unto Christ and the gospel, signally headed by a series of men in the latter days. He, therefore, and his spirit began to be together in the world in the apostles’ days, when the “mystery of iniquity” began to “work,” 2 Thessalonians 2:7. There is, therefore, no countenance to be taken from these words unto the perverting and wresting of that other expression concerning the Spirit of Christ in the prophets of old. This, therefore, is the formal reason of this appellation: The Holy Spirit is called the “Spirit of the Son,” and the “Spirit of Christ,” upon the account of his procession or emanation from his person also. Without respect hereunto he could not be called properly the “Spirit of Christ;” but on that supposition he may be. He is so denominated from that various relation and respect that he hath unto him in his work and operations. Thus is the Spirit called in the Scripture, these are the names whereby the essence and subsistence of the third person in the Holy Trinity are declared. How he is called on the account of his offices and operations will be manifested in our progress.

    CHAPTER 3.

    DIVINE NATURE AND PERSONALITY OF THE HOLY SPIRIT PROVED AND VINDICATED. Ends of our consideration of the dispensation of the Spirit — Principles premised thereunto — The nature of God the foundation of all religion — Divine revelation gives the rule and measure of religious worship — God hath revealed himself as three in one — Distinct actings and operations ascribed unto these distinct person; therefore the Holy Spirit a divine distinct person — Double opposition to the Holy Spirit — By some his personality granted and his deity denied — His personality denied by the Socinians — Proved against them — The open vanity of their pretenses — Matthew 28:19, pleaded — Appearance of the Spirit under the shape of a dove explained and improved — His appearance as fire opened — His personal subsistence proved — Personal properties assigned unto him — Understanding — Argument from hence pleaded and vindicated — A will — John 3:8, James 3:4, cleared — Exceptions removed — Power — Other personal ascriptions to him, with testimonies of them, vindicated and explained.

    WE shall now proceed to the matter itself designed unto consideration, — namely, the dispensation of the Spirit of God unto the church; and I shall endeavor to fix what I have to offer upon its proper principles, and from them to educe the whole doctrine concerning it. And this must be so done as to manifest the interest of our faith, obedience, and holy worship, in the whole and each part of it; for these are the immediate ends of all divine revelations, according to that holy maxim of our blessed Savior, “If ye know these things, happy are ye if ye do them.” To this end the ensuing principles are to be observed: — First, The nature and being of God is the foundation of all true religion and holy religious worship in the world. The great end for which we were made, for which we were brought forth by the power of God into this world, is to worship him and to give glory unto him; for he “made all things for himself,” or his own glory, Proverbs 16:4, to be rendered unto him according to the abilities and capacities that he hath furnished them withal, Revelation 4:11. And that which makes this worship indispensably necessary unto us, and from whence it is holy or religious, is the nature and being of God himself. There are, indeed, many parts or acts of religious worship which immediately respect (as their reason and motive) what God is unto us, or what he hath done and doth for us; but the principal and adequate reason of all divine worship, and that which makes it such, is what God is in himself. Because he is, — that is, an infinitely glorious, good, wise, holy, powerful, righteous, self-subsisting, self-sufficient, all-sufficient Being, the fountain, cause, and author of life and being to all things, and of all that is good in every kind, the first cause, last end, and absolutely sovereign Lord of all, the rest and all-satisfactory reward of all other beings, — therefore is he by us to be adored and worshipped with divine and religious worship. Hence are we in our hearts, minds, and souls, to admire, adore, and love him; his praises are we to celebrate; him [are we] to trust and fear, and so to resign ourselves and all our concernments unto his will and disposal; to regard him with all the acts of our minds and persons, answerably to the holy properties and excellencies of his nature. This it is to glorify him as God; for seeing “of him, and through him, and to him are all things,” to him must be “glory for ever,” Romans 11:36. “Believing that God thus is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him,” is the ground of all coming unto God in his worship, Hebrews 11:6. And herein lies the sin of men, that the “invisible things of God being manifest unto them, even his eternal power and Godhead,” yet “they glorify him not as God,” Romans 1:19-21. This is to honor, worship, fear God for himself; that is, on the account of what he is himself. Where the divine nature is, there is the true, proper, formal object of religious worship; and where that is not, it is idolatry to ascribe it to or exercise it towards any. And this God instructs us in, in all those places where he proclaims his name and describes his eternal excellencies, and that either absolutely or in comparison with other things.

    All is, that we may know him to be such a one as is to be worshipped and glorified for himself, or his own sake.

    Secondly, The revelation that God is pleased to make of himself unto us gives the rule and measure of all religious worship and obedience. His being, absolutely considered, as comprehending in it all infinite, divine perfections, is the formal reason of our worship; but this worship is to be directed, guided, regulated, by the revelation he makes of that being and of those excellencies unto us. This is the end of divine revelation, — namely, to direct us in paying that homage which is due unto the divine nature. I speak not now only of positive institutions, which are the free effects of the will of God, depending originally and solely on revelation, and which, therefore, have been various and actually changed; but this is that which I intend: — Look, what way soever God manifesteth his being and properties unto us, by his works or his word, our worship consisteth in a due application of our souls unto him according to that manifestation of himself.

    Thirdly, God hath revealed or manifested himself as three in one, and, therefore, as such is to be worshipped and glorified by us; — that is, as three distinct persons, subsisting in the same infinitely holy, one, undivided essence. This principle might be, and, had not that labor been obviated, ought to have been, here at large confirmed; it being that which the whole ensuing discourse doth presuppose and lean upon. And, in truth, I fear that the failing of some men’s profession begins with their relinquishment of this foundation. It is now evident unto all that here hath been the fatal miscarriage of those poor deluded souls amongst us whom they call Quakers; and it is altogether in vain to deal with them about other particulars, whilst they are carried away with infidelity from this foundation. Convince any of them of the doctrine of the Trinity, and all the rest of their imaginations vanish into smoke. And I wish it were so with them only. There are others, and those not a few, who either reject the doctrine of it as false, or despise it as unintelligible, or neglect it as useless, or of no great importance. I know this ulcer lies hid in the minds of many, and cannot but expect when it will break out, and cover the whole body with its defilements whereof they are members But these things are left to the care of Jesus Christ. The reason why I shall not in this place insist professedly on the confirmation and vindication of this fundamental truth is, because I have done it elsewhere, as having more than once publicly cast my mite into this sanctuary of the Lord; for which and the like services, wherein I stand indebted unto the gospel, I have met with that reward which I did always expect. For the present I shall only say, that on this supposition, that God hath revealed himself as three in one, he is in all our worship of him so to be considered. And, therefore, in our initiation into the profession and practice of the worship of God, according to the gospel, we are in our baptism engaged to it, “In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost,” Matthew 28:19.

    This is the foundation of our doing all the things that Christ commands us, as verse 20. Unto this service we are solemnly dedicated, namely, of God, as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit; as they are each of them equally participant of the same divine nature.

    Fourthly, These persons are so distinct in their peculiar subsistence that distinct actings and operations are ascribed unto them. And these actings are of two sorts: — 1. Ad intra, which are those internal acts in one person whereof another person is the object. And these acts ad invicem, or intra, are natural and necessary, inseparable from the being and existence of God. So the Father knows the Son and loveth him, and the Son seeth, knoweth, and loveth the Father. In these mutual actings, one person is the object of the knowledge and love of the other: John 3:35, “The Father loveth the Son, and hath given all things into his hand.” Chapter 5:20, “The Father loveth the Son.” Matthew 11:27, “No man knoweth the Son, but the Father; neither knoweth any man the Father, save the Son.” John 6:46, “None hath seen the Father, save he which is of God, he hath seen the Father.”

    This mutual knowledge and love of Father and Son is expressed at large, Proverbs 8:22-31; which place I have opened and vindicated elsewhere.

    And they are absolute, infinite, natural, and necessary unto the being and blessedness of God. So the Spirit is the mutual love of the Father and the Son, knowing them as he is known, and “searching the deep things of God.” And in these mutual, internal, eternal actings of themselves, consists much of the infinite blessedness of the holy God. Again, 2. There are distinct actings of the several persons ad extra; which are voluntary, or effects of will and choice, and not natural or necessary. And these are of two sorts: — (1.) Such as respect one another; for there are external acts of one person towards another: but then the person that is the object of these actings is not considered absolutely as a divine person, but with respect unto some peculiar dispensation and condescension. So the Father gives, sends, commands the Son, as he had condescended to take our nature upon him, and to be the mediator between God and man. So the Father and the Son do send the Spirit, as he condescends in an especial manner to the office of being the sanctifier and comforter of the church. Now, these are free and voluntary acts, depending upon the sovereign will, counsel, and pleasure of God, and might not have been, without the least diminution of his eternal blessedness. (2.) There are especial acts, ad extra, towards the creatures. This the whole Scripture testifieth unto, so that it is altogether needless to confirm it with particular instances. None who have learned the first principles of the doctrine of Christ, but can tell you what works are ascribed peculiarly to the Father, what to the Son, and what to the Holy Ghost. Besides, this will be manifested afterward in all the distinct actings of the Spirit; which is sufficient for our purpose.

    Fifthly, Hence it follows unavoidably that this Spirit of whom we treat is in himself a distinct, living, powerful, intelligent, divine person; for none other can be the author of those internal and external divine acts and operations which are ascribed unto him. But here I must stay a little, and confirm that foundation which we build upon; for we are in the investigation of those things which that one and self-same Spirit distributeth according to his own will. And it is indispensably necessary unto our present design that we inquire who and what that one and selfsame Spirit is, seeing on him and his will all these things do depend. And we do know, likewise, that if men prevail in the opposition they make unto his person, it is to no great purpose to concern ourselves in his operations; for the foundation of any fabric being taken away, the superstructure will be of no use nor abide.

    The opposition that is made in the world against the Spirit of God doctrinally may be reduced unto two heads; for some there are who grant his personality, or that he is a distinct self-subsisting person, but they deny his deity, deny him to be a participant of the divine nature, or will not allow him to be God. A created finite spirit they say he is, but the chiefest of all spirits that were created, and the head of all the good angels. Such a spirit they say there is, and that he is called the “Spirit of God,” or the “Holy Ghost,” upon the account of the work wherein he is employed.

    This way went the Macedonian heretics of old, and they are now followed by the Mohammedans; and some of late among ourselves have attempted to revive the same frenzy. But we shall not need to trouble ourselves about this notion. The folly of it is so evident that it is almost by all utterly deserted; for such things are affirmed of the Holy Ghost in the Scripture as that to assert his personality and deny his deity is the utmost madness that anyone can fall into in spiritual things. Wherefore, the Socinians, the present great enemies of the doctrine of the holy Trinity, and who would be thought to go soberly about the work of destroying the church of God, do utterly reject this plea and pretense. But that which they advance in the room of it is of no less pernicious nature and consequence: for, granting the things assigned to him to be the effects of divine power, they deny his personality, and assert that what is called by the name of the “Spirit of God,” or the “Holy Spirit,” is nothing but a quality in the divine nature, or the power that God puts forth for such and such purposes; which yet is no new invention of theirs. I do not design here professedly to contend with them about all the concernments of this difference; for there is nothing of importance in all their pretenses or exceptions, but it will in one place or other occur unto consideration in our progress. I shall only at present confirm the divine personality of the Holy Ghost with one argument; which I will not say is such as no man can return the show of an answer unto, — for what is it that the serpentine wits of men will not pretend an answer unto, or an exception against, if their lusts and prejudices require them so to do? — but I will boldly say it is such as that the gates of hell shall never prevail against it in the hearts of true believers, the strengthening of whose faith is all that in it I do aim at.

    And if it do not unto all unprejudiced persons evince the truth and reality of the divine personality of the Holy Ghost, it must certainly convince all men that nothing which is taught or delivered in the Scripture can possibly be understood.

    One consideration, which hath in part been before proposed, I shall premise, to free the subject of our argument from ambiguity; and this is, that this word or name “Spirit” is used sometimes to denote the Spirit of God himself, and sometimes his gifts and graces, the effects of his operations on the souls of men. And this our adversaries in this cause are forced to confess, and thereon in all their writings distinguish between the Holy Spirit and his effects. This alone being supposed, I say, it is impossible to prove the Father to be a person, or the Son to be so (both which are acknowledged), any other way than we may and do prove the Holy Ghost to be so; for he to whom all personal properties, attributes, adjuncts, acts, and operations, are ascribed, and unto whom they do belong, and to whom nothing is or can be truly and properly ascribed but what may and doth belong unto a person, is a person, and him are we taught to believe so to be. So know we the Father to be a person, as also the Son; for our knowledge of things is more by their properties and operations than by their essential forms. Especially is this so with respect to the nature, being, and existence of God, which are in themselves absolutely incomprehensible. Now, I shall not confirm the assumption of this argument with reference unto the Holy Ghost from this or that particular testimony, nor from the assignation of any single personal property unto him, but from the constant, uniform tenor of the Scripture in ascribing all these properties unto him. And we may add hereunto, that things are so ordered, in the wisdom of God, that there is no personal property that may be found in an infinite divine nature but it is in one place or other ascribed unto him.

    There is no exception can be laid against the force of this argument, but only that some things, on the one hand, are ascribed unto the Spirit which belong not unto a person, nor can be spoken of him who is so; and, on the other, that sundry things that properly belong to persons are in the Scripture figuratively ascribed unto such things as are not so. Thus, as to the first head of this exception, the Holy Spirit is said to be “poured out,” to be “shed abroad,” to be “an unction,” or the like; of all which expressions we shall treat afterward. What then? shall we say that he is not a person, but only the power of God? Will this render those expressions concerning him proper? How can the virtue of God, or the power of God, be said to be poured out, to be shed abroad, and the like?

    Wherefore, both they and we acknowledge that these expressions are figurative, as many things are so expressed of God in the Scripture, and that frequently; and what is the meaning of them under their figurative colors we shall afterward declare. This, therefore, doth not in the least impeach our argument, unless this assertion were true generally, that whatever is spoken of figuratively in the Scripture is no person; which would leave no one in heaven or earth. On the other side, it is confessed that there are things peculiar unto rational subsistents or persons, which are ascribed sometimes unto those that are not so. Many things of this nature, as to “hope,” to “believe,” to “bear,” are ascribed unto charity, Corinthians 13:7. But everyone presently apprehends that this expression is figurative, the abstract being put for the concrete by a metalepsis, and charity is said to do that which a man endued with that grace will do. So the Scripture is said to “see,” to “foresee,” to “speak,” and to “judge,” which are personal actings; but who doth not see and grant that a metonymy is and must be allowed in such assignations, that being ascribed unto the effect, the Scripture, which is proper to the cause, the Spirit of God speaking in it? So the heavens and the earth are said to “hear,” and the fields, with the trees of the forest, to “sing” and “clap their hands,” by a prosopopoeia. Now, concerning these things there is no danger of mistake.

    The light of reason and their own nature therein do give us a sufficient understanding of them; and such figurative expressions as are used concerning them are common in all good authors. Besides, the Scripture itself, in other places innumerable, doth so teach and declare what they are, as that its plain and direct proper assertions do sufficiently expound its own figurative enunciations: for these and such like ascriptions are only occasional; the direct description of the things themselves is given us in other places. But now with respect unto the Spirit of God all things are otherwise. The constant uniform expressions concerning him are such as declare him to be a person endowed with all personal properties, no description being anywhere given of him inconsistent with their proper application to him.

    If a sober, wise, and honest man should come and tell you that in such a country, where he hath been, there is one who is the governor of it, that doth well discharge his office, — that he heareth causes, discerneth right, distributes justice, relieves the poor, comforts them that are in distress; supposing you gave him that credit which honesty, wisdom, and sobriety do deserve, would you not believe that he intended a righteous, wise, diligent, intelligent person, discharging the office of a governor? What else could any man living imagine? But now suppose that another unknown person, or, so far as he is known, justly suspected of deceit and forgery, should come unto you and tell you that all which the other informed you and acquainted you withal was indeed true, but that the words which he spake have quite another intention; for it was not a man or any person that he intended, but it was the sun or the wind that he meant by all which he spake of him: for whereas the sun by his benign influences doth make a country fruitful and temperate, suited to the relief and comfort of all that dwell therein, and disposeth the minds of the inhabitants unto mutual kindness and benignity, he described these things figuratively unto you, under the notion of a righteous governor and his actions, although he never gave you the least intimation of any such intention; — must you not now believe that either the first person, whom you know to be a wise, sober, and honest man, was a notorious trifler, and designed your ruin, if you were to order any of your occasions according to his reports, or that your latter informer, whom you have just reason to suspect of falsehood and deceit in other things, hath endeavored to abuse both him and you, to render his veracity suspected, and to spoil all your designs grounded thereon? One of these you must certainly conclude upon. And it is no otherwise in this case. The Scripture informs us that the Holy Ghost rules in and over the church of God, appointing overseers of it under him; that he discerns and judgeth all things; that he comforteth them that are faint, strengthens them that are weak, is grieved with them and provoked by them who sin; and that in all these, and in other things of the like nature innumerable, he worketh, ordereth, and disposeth all “according to the counsel of his own will.” Hereupon it directeth us so to order our conversation towards God that we do not grieve him nor displease him, telling us thereon what great things he will do for us; on which we lay the stress of our obedience and salvation. Can any man possibly, that gives credit to the testimony thus proposed in the Scripture, conceive any otherwise of this Spirit but as of a holy, wise, intelligent person? Now, whilst we are under the power of these apprehensions, there come unto us some men, Socinians or Quakers, whom we have just cause on many other accounts to suspect, at least, of deceit and falsehood; and they confidently tell us that what the Scripture speaks concerning the Holy Spirit is indeed true, but that in and by all the expressions which it useth concerning him, it intendeth no such person as it seems to do, but “an accident, a quality, an effect, or influence of the power of God,” which figuratively doth all the things mentioned, — namely, that hath a will figuratively, and understanding figuratively, discerneth and judgeth figuratively, is sinned against figuratively, and so of all that is said of him. Can any man that is not forsaken of all natural reason as well as spiritual light choose now but determine that either the Scripture designed to draw him into errors and mistakes about the principal concernments of his soul, and so to ruin him eternally; or that these persons, who would impose such a sense upon it, are indeed corrupt seducers, that seek to overthrow his faith and comforts?

    Such will they at last appear to be. I shall now proceed to confirm the argument proposed: — 1. All things necessary to this purpose are comprised in the solemn form of our initiation into covenant with God. Matthew 28:19, our Lord Jesus Christ commands his apostles to “disciple all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost” This is the foundation we lay of all our obedience and profession, which are to be regulated by this initial engagement. Now, no man will or doth deny but that the Father and the Son are distinct persons. Some, indeed, there are who deny the Son to be God; but none are so mad as to deny him to be a person, though they would have him only to be a man; — all grant him, whether God and man, or only man, to be a distinct person from the Father. Now, what confusion must this needs introduce, to add to them, and to join equally with them, as to all the concerns of our faith and obedience, the Holy Ghost, if he be not a divine person even as they! If, as some fancy, he be a person indeed, but not one that is divine, but a creature, then here is openly the same honor assigned unto him who is no more as unto God himself. This elsewhere the Scripture declares to be idolatry to be detested, Galatians 4:8, Romans 1:25. And if he be not a person, but a virtue and quality in God, and emanation of power from him, concerning which our adversaries teratologou~si , speak things portentous and unintelligible, what sense can any man apprehend in the words?

    Besides, whatever is ascribed unto the other persons, either with respect unto themselves or our duty towards them, is equally ascrib ed unto the Holy Ghost; for whatsoever is intended by the “name” of the Father and of the Son, he is equally with them concerned therein. It is not the name “Father,” and the name “Son,” but the name of “God,” that is, of them both, that is intended. It is a name common to them all, and distinctly applied unto them all; but they have not in this sense distinct or diverse names. And by the “name” of God either his being or his authority is signified; for other intention of it none have been able to invent. Take the “name” here in either sense, and it is sufficient as to what we intend: for if it be used in the first way, then the being of the Spirit must be acknowledged to be the same with that of the Father; if in the latter, he hath the same divine authority with him. He who hath the nature and authority of God is God, — is a divine person.

    Our argument, then, from hence is not merely from his being joined with the Father and the Son, for so, as to some ends and purposes, any creatures may be joined with them (this our adversaries prove from Acts 20:32, Ephesians 6:10, Philippians 3:10, 2 Thessalonians 1:9, and might do it from other places innumerable, although the first of these will not confirm what it is produced to give countenance unto, — Schlichting. de Trinitat. ad Meisner., p. 605); but it is from the manner and end of his being conjoined with the Father and the Son, wherein their “name,” — that is, their divine nature and authority, — is ascribed unto him, that we argue.

    Again; We are said to be baptized eijv to< o]noma , “into his name.” And no sense can be affixed unto these words but what doth unavoidably include his personality; for two things they may and do intend, nor anything else but what may be reduced unto them: — First, Our religious owning the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, in all our divine worship, faith, and obedience. Now, as we own and avow the one, so we do the other; for we are alike baptized into their name, equally submitting to their authority, and equally taking the profession of their name upon us. If, then, we avow and own the Father as a distinct person, so we do the Holy Ghost. Again; by being baptized into the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost, we are sacredly initiated and consecrated, or dedicated, unto the service and worship of the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. This we take upon us in our baptism. Herein lies the foundation of all our faith and profession, with that engagement of ourselves unto God which constitutes our Christianity. This is the pledge of our entrance into covenant with God, and of our giving up ourselves unto him in the solemn bond of religion. Herein to conceive that anyone who is not God as the Father is, who is not a person as he is also, and the Son likewise, is joined with them for the ends and in the manner mentioned, without the least note of difference as to deity or personality, is a strange fondness, destructive of all religion, and leading the minds of men towards polytheism. And as we engage into all religious obedience unto the Father and Son herein, to believe in them, trust, fear, honor, and serve them, so we do the same with respect unto the Holy Ghost; which how we can do, if he be not as they are, no man can understand.

    We do not, then, in this case, from hence merely plead our being baptized into the “Holy Ghost,” as some pretend; nor, indeed, are we said so to be.

    Men may figuratively be said to be baptized into a doctrine, when their baptism is a pledge and token of their profession of it. So the disciples whom the apostle Paul met with at Ephesus, Acts 19:3, are said to be baptized eijv to< Iwa>nnou ba>ptisma , “into the baptism of John,” — that is, the doctrine of repentance for the forgiveness of sins, whereof his baptism was a pledge. So also the Israelites are said to be baptized eijv Mwu`sh~n , “into Moses,” 1 Corinthians 10:2, because he led and conducted them through the sea, when they were sprinkled with the waves of it as a token of their initiation into the rites and ceremonies which he was to deliver unto them. But we are said to be baptized into his “name;” which is the same with that of the Father and Son. And certainly this proposal of God as Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, to be the object of all our faith and worship, and our engagement hereunto required as the foundation of all our present religion and future hopes, being made unto us, and that under one and the same name; if the doctrine of a Trinity of persons, subsisting in the same undivided essence, be not taught and declared in these words, we may justly despair of ever having any divine mystery manifested unto us. 2. His appearance in and under a visible sign argues his personal existence.

    This is related, Matthew 3:16; Luke 3:22; John 1:32. Luke speaks first in general that he descended ejnei]dei swmatikw~| , “in a bodily shape” or appearance; and they all agree that it was the shape of a dove under which he appeared. The words in Matthew are, Ei=de to< Pneu~ma tou~ Qeou~ katabai~non wJsei< peristeramenon ejp aujto>n “He saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting” (or rather coming) “upon him.” “He,” that is John the Baptist, not Christ himself.

    The relative, aujto>v , refers in this place to the more remote antecedent; for although “he,” that is Christ himself, also saw the descending of the Holy Spirit, yet I suppose this relates unto that token which was to be given of him unto John, whereby he should know him, John 1:32,33. The following words are ambiguous: for that expression, “like a dove,” may refer to the manner of his descending, — descending (in a bodily shape) as a dove descends; or they may respect the manner of his appearance, — he appeared like a dove descending. And this sense is determined in the other evangelists to the bodily shape wherein he descended. He took the form or shape of a dove to make a visible representation of himself by; for a visible pledge was to be given of the coming of the Holy Ghost on the Messiah, according to the promise, and thereby did God direct his great forerunner to the knowledge of him. Now, this was no real dove. That would not have been a thing so miraculous as this appearance of the Holy Ghost is represented to be. And the text will not bear any such apprehension, though it was entertained by some of the ancients; for it is evident that this shape of a dove came out of heaven. He saw the heavens opened and the dove descending; that is, out of heaven, which was opened to make way, as it were, for him. Moreover, the expression of the opening of the heavens is not used but with respect unto some appearance or manifestation of God himself. And so (or which is the same) the bowing of the heavens is often used: <19E405> Psalm 144:5, “Bow thy heavens, O LORD, and come down;” 2 Samuel 22:10; Isaiah 64:1; Ezekiel 1:1, “The heavens were opened, and I saw visions of God;” so Acts 7:56. God used not this sign but in some manifestation of himself; and had not this been an appearance of God, there had been no need of bowing or opening the heavens for it. And it is plainly said that it was not a dove, but the shape or representation of a dove. It was ei=dov swmatiko>n , “a bodily shape;” and that peristera~v , “of a dove.”

    As, then, at the beginning of the old creation, the Spirit of God tp,j,ræm] , “incubabat,” came and fell on the waters, cherishing the whole, and communicating a prolific and vivific quality unto it, as a fowl or dove in particular gently moves itself upon its eggs, until, with and by its generative warmth, it hath communicated vital heat unto them; so now, at the entrance of the new creation, he comes as a dove upon him who was the immediate author of it, and virtually comprised it in himself, carrying it on by virtue of his presence with him. And so this is applied in the Syriac ritual of baptism, composed by Severinus, in the account given of the baptism of Christ: aym l[w tnkç arbd açyr l[w ttjn tjrp anwy twmdb açdwqd ajwrw tphr ; — “And the Spirit of Holiness descended, flying in the likeness of a dove, and rested upon him, and moved on the waters.” And in the assumption of this form there may be some respect unto the dove that brought tidings to Noah of the ceasing of the flood of waters, and of the ending of the wrath of God, who thereon said that he would curse the earth no more, Genesis 8:11,21, for herein also was there a significant representation of him who visited poor, lost mankind in their cursed condition, and proclaimed peace unto them that would return to God by him, the great peace-maker, Ephesians 2:14-17.

    And this work he immediately engaged into on the resting of this dove upon him. Besides, there is a natural aptness in that creature to represent the Spirit that rested on the Lord Jesus; for the known nature and course of a dove is such as is meet to mind us of purity and harmless innocency.

    Hence is that direction, “Be harmless as doves,” Matthew 10:16. So also the sharpness of its sight or eyes, as Song of Solomon 1:15, 4:1, is fixed on to represent a quick and discerning understanding, such as was in Christ from the resting of the Spirit upon him, Isaiah 11:2-4.

    The shape thereof that appeared was that of a dove, but the substance itself, I judge, was of a fiery nature, an ethereal substance, shaped into the form or resemblance of a dove. It had the shape of a dove, but not the appearance of feathers, colors, or the like. This also rendered the appearance the more visible, conspicuous, heavenly, and glorious. And the Holy Ghost is often compared to fire, because he was of old typified or represented thereby; for on the first solemn offering of sacrifices there came fire from the Lord for the kindling of them. Hence Theodotion of old rendered hwO;hy] [væYwæ , Genesis 4:4, “The LORD had respect unto Abel, and to his offering,” by ‘ Enepu>risen oJ Qeo>v , “God fired the offering of Abel;” sent down fire that kindled his sacrifice as a token of his acceptance. However, it is certain that at the first erection of the altar in the wilderness, upon the first sacrifices, “fire came out from before the LORD, and consumed upon the altar the burnt-offering and the fat; which when all the people saw, they shouted, and fell on their faces,” Leviticus 9:24.

    And the fire kindled hereby was to be perpetuated on the altar, so that none was ever to be used in sacrifice but what was traduced from it. For a neglect of this intimation of the mind of God were Nadab and Abihu consumed, chapter <031001> 10:1, 2. So was it also upon the dedication of the altar in the temple of Solomon: “Fire came down from heaven and consumed the burnt-offering and the sacrifices,” 2 Chronicles 7:1; and a fire thence kindled was always kept burning on the altar. And in like manner God bare testimony to the ministry of Elijah, 1 Kings 18:38,39.

    God by all these signified that no sacrifices were accepted with him where faith was not kindled in the heart of the offerer by the Holy Ghost, represented by the fire that kindled the sacrifices on the altar. And in answer hereunto is our Lord Jesus Christ said to offer himself “through the eternal Spirit,” Hebrews 9:14. It was, therefore, most probably a fiery appearance that was made. And in the next bodily shape which he assumed it is expressly said that it was fiery: Acts 2:3, “There appeared unto them cloven tongues like as of fire;” which was the visible token of the coming of the Holy Ghost upon them. And he chose, then, that figure of tongues to denote the assistance which, by the miraculous gift of speaking with divers tongues, together with wisdom and utterance, he furnished them withal for the publication of the gospel. And thus, also, the Lord Christ is said to “baptize with the Holy Ghost and with fire,” Matthew 3:11. Not two things are intended, but the latter words, “and with fire,” are added ejxhghtikw~v , and the expression is e[n dia< duoi~n , — with the Holy Ghost, who is a spiritual, divine, eternal fire. So God absolutely is said to be a “consuming fire,” Hebrews 12:29, Deuteronomy 4:24. And as in these words, “He shall baptize with the Holy Ghost and with fire,” there is a prospect unto what came to pass afterward, when the apostles received the Holy Ghost with a visible pledge of fiery tongues, so there seems to be a retrospect, by way of allusion unto what is recorded, Isaiah 6:6,7; for a living or “fiery coal from the altar,” where the fire represented the Holy Ghost, or his work and grace, having touched the lips of his prophet, his sin was taken away, both as to the guilt and filth of it. And this is the work of the Holy Ghost, who not only sanctifieth us, but, by ingenerating faith in us, and the application of the promise unto us, is the cause and means of our justification also, 1 Corinthians 6:11, Titus 3:4-7, whereby our sins on both accounts are taken away. So also his efficacy in other places is compared unto fire and burning: Isaiah 4:4,5, “When the Lord shall have washed away the filth of the daughters of Zion, and shall have purged the blood of Jerusalem from the midst thereof, by the spirit of judgment, and by the spirit of burning.” He is compared both to fire and water, with respect unto the same cleansing virtue in both. So also Malachi 3:2.

    Hence, as this is expressed by “the Holy Ghost and fire” in two evangelists, Matthew 3:11, Luke 3:16; so in the other two there is mention only of the “Holy Ghost,” Mark 1:8, John 1:33, the same thing being intended. I have added these things a little to clear the manner of this divine appearance, which also belongs unto the economy of the Spirit.

    Now, I say that this appearance of the Holy Ghost in a bodily shape, wherein he was represented by that which is a substance and hath a subsistence of its own, doth manifest that he himself is a substance and hath a subsistence of his own; for if he be no such thing, but a mere influential effect of the power of God, we are not taught right apprehensions of him but mere mistakes by this appearance, for of such an accident there can be no substantial figure or resemblance made but what is monstrous. It is excepted by our adversaries (Crell. de Natur. Spir.

    Sanc.), “That a dove is no person, because not endued with an understanding, which is essentially required unto the constitution of a person; and therefore,” they say, “no argument can thence be taken for the personality of the Holy Ghost” But it is enough that he was represented by a subsisting substance; which if they will grant him to be, we shall quickly evince that he is endued with a divine understanding, and so is completely a person. And whereas they farther object, “That if the Holy Ghost in the appearance intended to manifest himself to be a divine person, he would have appeared as a man, who is a person, for so God, or an angel in his name, appeared under the Old Testament,” it is of no more importance than the preceding exception. The Holy Ghost did manifest himself as it seemed good unto him; and some reasons for the instructive use of the shape of a fiery dove we have before declared. Neither did God of old appear only in a human shape. He did so sometimes in a burning fiery bush, Exodus 3:2,4; sometimes in a pillar of fire or a cloud, chap. 14:24. Moreover, the appearances of God, as I have elsewhere demonstrated, under the Old Testament, were all of them of the second person; and he assumed a human shape as a preludium unto, and a signification of, his future personal assumption of our nature. No such thing being intended by the Holy Ghost, he might represent himself under what shape he pleased. Yea, the representation of himself under a human shape had been dangerous and unsafe for us; for it would have taken off the use of those instructive appearances under the Old Testament teaching the incarnation of the Son of God. And also, that sole reason of such appearances being removed, — namely, that they had all respect unto the incarnation of the second person, — as they would have been by the like appearance of the third, there would have been danger of giving a false idea of the Deity unto the minds of men; for some might from thence have conceived that God had a bodily shape like unto us, when none could ever be so fond as to imagine him to be like a dove. And these, with the like testimonies in general , are given unto the divine personality of the Holy Spirit. I shall next consider those personal properties which are particularly and distinctly ascribed unto him.

    First, Understanding or wisdom, which is the first inseparable property of an intelligent subsistence, is so ascribed unto him in the acts and effects of it: 1 Corinthians 2:10, “The Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God.” What Spirit it is that is intended is declared expressly, verse 12, “Now we have not received to< pneu~ma tou~ ko>smou , the spirit of the world,” are not acted by the evil spirit; ajlla< to< Pneu~ma to< ejk tou~ Qeou~ , “but the Spirit which is of God,” — a signal description of the Holy Ghost. So he is called “His Spirit,” verse 10, “God hath revealed these things unto us by his Spirit.” Now, to search is an act of understanding; and the Spirit is said to search, because he knoweth: Verse 11, “What man knoweth the things of a man, save the spirit of man which is in him?” — which is intimate unto all its own thoughts and counsels; “even so the things of God knoweth no man, but the Spirit of God.” And by him are they revealed unto us, for by him “we know the things that are freely given to us of God,” verse 12. These things cannot be spoken of any but a person endued with understanding. And he thus “searcheth ta< ba>qh tou~ Qeou~ ,the deep things of God,” — that is, the mysteries of his will, counsel, and grace; — and is, therefore, a divine person that hath an infinite understanding; as it is said of God, wOjn;Wbj]li rq,je ˆyae , Isaiah 40:28, There is no end,” measure, or investigation, “of his understanding;” <19E705> Psalm 147:5, there is “no number of his understanding,” — it is endless, boundless, infinite. It is excepted (Schlichting. de Trinitat., p. 605) “That the Spirit is not here taken for the Spirit himself, nor doth the apostle express what the Spirit himself doth, but what by the assistance of the Holy Ghost men are enabled to do. By that believers are helped to search into the deep counsels of God.” But as this exception is directly against the words of the text, so the context will by no means admit of it; for the apostle giveth an account how the wisdom, counsels, and deep things of God, which the world could not understand, were now preached and declared unto the church. “God,” saith he, “hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit.” But how cometh the Spirit himself, the author of these revelations, to be acquainted with these things? This he hath from his own nature, whereby he knoweth or “searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God.” It is, therefore, the revelation made by the Spirit unto the apostles and penmen of the scripture of the New Testament, — who were acted by the Holy Ghost in like manner as were the holy men of old, Peter 1:21, — which the apostle intendeth, and not the illumination and teaching of believers in the knowledge of the mysteries by them revealed, whereof the apostle treateth in these words. But who is this Spirit? The same apostle tells us that the “judgments of God are unsearchable, and his ways past finding out,” Romans 11:33; and asketh, “Who hath known the mind of the Lord? or who hath been his counsellor?” verse 35. And yet this Spirit is said to “search all things, yea, the deep things of God;” such as to all creatures are absolutely unsearchable and past finding out. This, then, is the Spirit of God himself, who is God also; for so it is in the prophet from whence these words are taken, “Who hath directed the Spirit of the LORD, or being his counsellor hath taught him?” Isaiah 40:13.

    It will not relieve the adversaries of the Holy Ghost, though it be pleaded by them that he is compared with and opposed unto the “spirit of a man,” 1 Corinthians 2:11, which, they say, is no person; for no comparisons hold in all circumstances. The spirit of a man is his rational soul, endued with understanding and knowledge. This is an individual intelligent substance, capable of a subsistence in a separate condition. Grant the Spirit of God to be so far a person, and all their pretences fall to the ground. And whereas it is affirmed by one among ourselves, though otherwise asserting “the deity of the Holy Ghost” (Goodwin, p. 175), “That this expression, of ‘searching the things of God,’ cannot be applied directly to the Spirit, but must intend his enabling us to search into them, because to search includes imperfection, and the use of means to come to the knowledge of any thing,” it is not of weight in this matter; for such acts are ascribed unto God with respect unto their effects. And searching being with us the means of attaining the perfect knowledge of anything, the perfection of the knowledge of God is expressed thereby. So David prays that God would “search him, and know his heart,” <19D923> Psalm 139:23.

    And he is often said to “search the hearts of men,” whereby his infinite wisdom is intimated, whereunto all things are open and naked. So is his Spirit said to “search the deep things of God,” because of his infinite understanding and the perfection of his knowledge, before which they lie open. And as things are here spoken of the Spirit in reference unto God the Father, so are they spoken of him in reference unto the Spirit: Romans 8:27, “He that searcheth the hearts knoweth what is the mind of the Spirit.” Add hereunto that this Spirit is the author of wisdom and understanding in and unto others, and therefore he must have them in himself; and that not virtually or casually only, but formally also. Corinthians 12:8, wisdom and knowledge are reckoned among the gifts bestowed by him. For those of faith and tongues, it is enough that they are in him virtually; but wisdom and understanding, they cannot be given by any but he that is wise and understandeth what he doth; and hence is he called expressly a “Spirit of wisdom and understanding, of counsel and knowledge,” Isaiah 11:2.

    I might confirm this by other testimonies, where other effects of understanding are ascribed unto him, as 1 Timothy 4:1; 1 Peter 1:11; 2 Peter 1:21; but what hath been spoken is sufficient unto our purpose.

    Secondly, A will is ascribed unto him. This is the most eminently distinguishing character and property of a person. Whatever is endued with an intelligent will is a person; and it cannot by any fiction, with any tolerable congruity, be ascribed unto anything else, unless the reason of the metaphor be plain and obvious. So when our Savior says of the wind that it bloweth o[pou Qe>lei , “as it willeth,” or listeth, John 3:8, the abuse of the word is evident. All intended is, that the wind, as unto us, is ajnupeu>qunov , and not at all at our disposal, acts not by our guidance or direction. And no man is so foolish as not to apprehend the meaning of it, or once to inquire whether our Savior doth properly ascribe a will to the wind or no. So James 3:4. The words rendered by us, “Turned about with a very small helm, whithersoever the governor listeth,” are in the original, “ Opou a\n hJ oJrmh< tou~ eujqu>nontov bou>lhtai in which the act of willing is ascribed to the oJrmh> , the impetus or inclination of the governor, which yet hath not a will. But the oJrmh> in that place is not the prw>th ki>nhsiv of the philosophers, the motus primo-primus, or the first agitation or inclination of the mind; but it is the will itself under an earnest inclination, such as is usual with them who govern ships by the helms in storms. Hereunto the act of willing is properly ascribed, and he in whom it is proved to be is a person. Thus, a will acting with understanding and choice, as the principle and cause of his outward actions, is ascribed unto the Holy Ghost: 1 Corinthians 12:11, “All these worketh that one and the self-same Spirit, dividing to every man severally as he will.”

    He had before asserted that he was the author and donor of all the spiritual gifts which he had been discoursing about, verses 4-6. These gifts he declares to be various, as he manifests in nine instances, and all variously disposed of by him, verses 8-10. If now it be inquired what is the rule of this his distribution of them, he tells us that it is his own will , his choice and pleasure. What can be spoken more fully and plainly to describe an intelligent person, acting voluntarily with freedom and by choice, I know not.

    We may consider what is excepted hereunto. They say (Schlichting. p. 610) “That the Holy Ghost is here introduced as a person by a prosopopioeia, — that the distribution of the gifts mentioned is ascribed unto him by a metaphor; and by the same or another metaphor he is said to have a will, or to act as he will.” But is it not evident that if this course of interpreting, or rather of perverting, Scripture may be allowed, nothing of any certainty will be left unto us therein? It is but saying this or that is a metaphor, and if one will not serve the turn, to bring in two or three, one on the neck of another, and the work is done; — the sense intended is quite changed and lost. Allow this liberty or bold licentiousness, and you may overthrow the being of God himself and the mediation of Christ, as to any testimony given unto them in the Scripture. But the words are plain, “He divideth to every man severally as he will.” And for the confirmation of his deity, though that be out of question on the supposition of his personality, I shall only add from this place, that he who hath the sovereign disposal of all spiritual gifts, having only his own will, which is infinitely wise and holy, for his rule, he is “over all, God blessed for ever.”

    Thirdly, Another property of a living person is power. A power whereby anyone is able to act according to the guidance of his understanding and the determinations of his will, declares him to be a person. It is not the mere ascription of power absolutely, or ability unto anything, that I intend; for they may signify no more but the efficacy wherewith such things are attended in their proper places, as instruments of the effects whereunto they are applied. In this sense power is ascribed to the word of God, when it is said to be “able to save our souls,” James 1:21; and Acts 20:32, “the word of God’s grace” is said to be “able to build us up, and to give us an inheritance among all them which are sanctified,” if that place intend the word written or preached (whereinto I have made inquiry elsewhere): but these things are clearly interpreted in other places. The word is said to be “able,” yea, to be the “power of God unto salvation,” Romans 1:16, because God is pleased to use it and make it effectual by his grace unto that end. But where power, divine power, is absolutely ascribed unto anyone, and that declared to be put forth and exercised by the understanding and according to the will of him to whom it is so ascribed, it doth undeniably prove him to be a divine person; for when we say the Holy Ghost is so, we intend no more but that he is one who by his own divine understanding puts forth his own divine power. So is it in this case: Job 33:4, “The Spirit of God hath made me, and the breath of the Almighty hath given me life.” Creation is an act of divine power, the highest we are capable to receive any notion of; and it is also an effect of the wisdom and will of him that createth, as being a voluntary act, and designed unto a certain end. All these, therefore, are here ascribed to the Spirit of God. It is excepted (Schlichting. pp. 613-615) “That by the ‘Spirit of God’ here mentioned no more is intended but our own vital spirits, whereby we are quickened, called the ‘Spirit of God’ because he gave it.” But this is too much confidence. The words are, yniYejæT] yDævæ tmæv]niw] ynit]c;[; laeAjæWr . There were two distinct divine operations in and about the creation of man. The first was the forming of his body out of the dust of the earth; this is expressed by hc;[; , and rxæy; — “he made,” “he formed.” And secondly, the infusion of a living or quickening soul into him, called µyYijæ tmæv]ni , or “the breath of life.” Both these are here distinctly mentioned; the first ascribed to the Spirit of God, the other to his breath, — that is, the same Spirit considered in a peculiar way of operation in the infusion of the rational soul. Such is the sense of these figurative and enigmatical words, “God breathed into man the breath of life,” — that is, by his Spirit he effected a principle of life in him; as we shall see afterward. Isaiah 11:2, As he is called a “Spirit of wisdom and understanding,” so is he also of “might” or power. And although it may be granted that the things there mentioned are rather effects of his operations than adjuncts of his nature, yet he who affecteth wisdom and power in others must first have them himself. To this purpose also is that demand, Micah 2:7, “Is the Spirit of the LORD straitened,” or shortened? that is, in his power; that he cannot work and operate in the prophets and his church as in former days; and the same prophet, chapter 3:8, affirms that he is “full of power, and of judgment, and of might, by the Spirit of the LORD.”

    These things were wrought in him by his power, as the apostle speaks to the same purpose, Ephesians 3:16.

    Those by whom this truth is opposed do lay out all their strength and skill in exceptions, I may say cavils, against some of these particular testimonies and some expressions in them; but as to the whole argument, taken from the consideration of the design and scope of the Scripture in them all, they have nothing to except.

    To complete this argument, I shall add the consideration of those works and operations of all sorts which are ascribed to the Spirit of God; which we shall find to be such as are not capable of an assignation unto him with the least congruity of speech or design of speaking intelligibly, unless he be a distinct, singular subsistent or person, endued with divine power and understanding. And here what we desired formerly might be observed must be again repeated. It is not from a single instance of every one of the works which we shall mention that we draw and confirm our argument; for some of them, singly considered, may perhaps sometimes be metaphorically ascribed unto other causes, which doth not prove that therefore they are persons also, — which contains the force of all the exceptions of our adversaries against these testimonies; — but as some of them, at least, never are nor can be assigned unto any but a divine person, so we take our argument from their joint consideration, or the uniform, constant assignation of them all unto him in the Scriptures: which renders it irrefragable. For the things themselves, I shall not insist upon them, because their particular nature must be afterward unfolded.

    First, He is said to teach us: Luke 12:12, “The Holy Ghost shall teach you what ye ought to say.” John 14:26, “The Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance.” 1 John 2:27, He is the “anointing which teacheth us all things;” how and whence he is so called shall be afterward declared. He is the great Teacher of the church, unto whom the accomplishment of that great promise is committed, “And they shall be all taught of God,” John 6:45. It is sad with the church of God when her teachers are removed into a corner, and her eyes see them not; but better lose all other teachers, and that utterly, than to lose this great Teacher only: for although he is pleased to make use of them, he can teach effectually and savingly without them where they are removed and taken away; but they cannot teach without him unto the least spiritual advantage. And those who pretend to be teachers of others, and yet despise his teaching assistance, will one day find that they undertook a work which was none of theirs. But as unto our use of this assertion, it is excepted “That the apostle affirms that nature also teaches us: Corinthians 11:14, ‘Doth not even nature itself teach you?’ now, nature is not a person.” This is the way and manner of them with whom we have to do. If any word in a testimony produced by us have been anywhere used metaphorically, though it be never so evident that it is so used in that place, instantly it must have the same figurative application in the testimony excepted against, although they can give no reason why it should so signify! And if this course of excepting be allowed, there will be nothing left intelligible in the Scripture, nor in any other author, nor in common conversation in the world; for there is scarce any word or name of [a] thing but, one where or other, is or hath been abused or used metaphorically. In particular, nature in this place of the apostle is said to teach us objectively, as the heavens and earth teach us in what we learn from them; for it is said to teach us what we may learn from the customs and actings of them who live, proceed, and act, according to the principles, dictates, and inclinations of it. Everyone sees that here is no intimation of an active teaching by instruction, or a real communication of knowledge, but it is said figuratively to do what we do with respect unto it. And not only in several places, but in the same sentence, a word may be used properly with respect unto one thing and abusively with respect unto another; as in that saying of the poet, — “Disce, puer, virtutem ex me, verumque laborem; Fortunam ex aliis:” [AEn. 12:435.] for virtue and industry are to be learned properly, but fortune, as they called it, or prosperous events, are not so. These things, therefore, are very different, and their difference is obvious unto all. But we insist not merely on this or that particular instance. Let any man not absolutely prepossessed with prejudice read over that discourse of our Savior unto his disciples, wherein he purposely instructs them in the nature and work of the Spirit of God, on whom, as it were, he then devolved the care of them and the gospel, according unto the promise, John 14., 15., 16., and he will need no farther instruction or confirmation in this matter. He is there frequently called “The Comforter,” the name of a person, and that vested with an office, with respect unto the work that he would do; and “Another Comforter,” in answer and conformity unto the Lord Christ, who was one Comforter and a person, as all grant, chapter 14:16, 26. If he be not so, the intention of this expression with these circumstances must be to deceive us, and not instruct us. He tells them, moreover, that he is one whom the world neither sees nor knows, but who abideth with and dwelleth in believers, verse 17; one whom the Father would send, and who would come accordingly, and that to teach them, to lead and guide them and to bring things to their remembrance, verse 26; a Comforter that should come and testify or bear witness unto him, chap. 15:26; one that should be sent of him, “to reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment,” chapter 16:7, 8, and to abide with his disciples, to supply his own bodily absence. So is he said to “speak,” “guide,” “teach,” “hear,” to “receive of Christ’s and to show it unto others,” John 14:26, 16:13, 14, with sundry other things of the same nature and importance.

    And these things are not spoken of him occasionally or in transitu, but in a direct continued discourse, designed on purpose by our Lord Jesus Christ to acquaint his disciples who he was, and what he would do for them. And if there were nothing spoken of him in the whole Scripture but what is here declared by our Savior, all unprejudiced men must and would acknowledge him to be a divine person. And it is a confidence swelling above all bounds of modesty, to suppose that because one or other of these things is or may be metaphorically or metaleptically ascribed unto this or that thing which are not persons, when the figurativeness of such an ascription is plain and open, that therefore they are all of them in like manner so ascribed unto the Holy Ghost in that discourse of our Savior unto his disciples, wherein he designed the instruction of them, as above declared. Of the same nature is that which we discoursed before concerning his searching of all things, from 1 Corinthians 2:10; which as it proves him to be an understanding agent, so it undeniably denotes a personal action. Such also are the things mentioned, Romans 8:16,26: He “helpeth our infirmities,” he “maketh intercession for us,” he himself “beareth witness with our spirit;” the particular meaning of all which expressions shall be afterward inquired into. Here the only refuge of our adversaries is to cry up a prosopopoeia (Schlichting. p. 627) But how do they prove it? Only by saying that “these things belong properly to a person, which the Spirit is not.” Now, this is nothing but to set up their own false hypothesis against our arguments, and, not being able to contend with the premises, to deny the conclusion.

    There are two other places of this nature, both to the same purpose, sufficient of themselves to confirm our faith in the truth pleaded for; and these are, Acts 13:2,4, “As they ministered unto the Lord, and fasted, the Holy Ghost said, Separate me Barnabas and Saul for the work whereunto I have called them. So they, being sent forth by the Holy Ghost, departed.”

    The other is chapter 20:28, “Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers.”

    These places hold a good correspondence; and what is reported in an extraordinary case, as matter of fact, in the first, is doctrinally applied unto ordinary cases in the latter. And two things are remarkable in the first place: — 1. The Holy Ghost’s designation of himself as the person unto whom and whose work Barnabas and Saul were to be separated and dedicated. Saith he, Afori>sate dh> moi , not “Separate me,” as in our translation, making the Spirit only the author of the command, but “Separate unto me;” which proposeth him also as the object of the duty required, and the person whose work was to be attended. Who or what, then, is intended by that pronoun “me?” Some person is directed unto and signified thereby; nor can any instance be given where it is so much as figuratively used, unless it be in a professed parable. That remains, therefore, to be inquired into, Who is intended in that word “me?” And the words are the words of the Holy Ghost: “The Holy Ghost said, Separate unto me;” he, therefore, alone is intended. All the answer which the wit and diligence of our adversaries can invent is, that “these words are ascribed unto the Holy Ghost because the prophets that were in the church of Antioch spake therein by his instinct and inspiration.” But in this evasion there is no regard unto the force of our argument; for we do not argue merely from his being said to speak , but from what is spoken by him, “Separate unto me,” and do inquire whether the prophets be intended by that word or no? If so, which of them? for they were many by whom the Holy Ghost spake the same thing, and some one must be intended in common by them all; and to say that this was any of the prophets is foolish, indeed blasphemous. 2. The close of the second verse confirms this application of the word, “For the work whereunto I have called them.” This confessedly is the Holy Ghost. Now, to call men to the ministry is a free act of authority, choice, and wisdom; which are properties of a person, and none other. Nor is either the Father or the Son in the Scripture introduced more directly clothed with personal properties than the Holy Ghost is in these places.

    And the whole is confirmed, verse 4, “So they, being sent forth by the Holy Ghost, departed.” He called them, by furnishing them with ability and authority for their work; he commanded them to be set apart by the church, that they might be blessed and owned in their work; and he sent them forth, by an impression of his authority on their minds, given them by those former acts of his. And if a divine person be not hereby described, I know not how he may so be.

    The other text speaks unto the same purpose. Acts 20:28, it is expressly said that the Holy Ghost made the elders of the church the overseers of it. The same act of wisdom and authority is here again assigned unto him. And here is no room left for the evasion insisted on; for these words were not spoken in a way of prophecy, nor in the name of the Holy Ghost, but concerning him. And they are explicatory of the other; for he must be meant in these expressions, “Separate unto me those whom I have called,” by whom they are made ministers. Now, this was the Holy Ghost; for he makes the overseers of the church. And we may do well to take notice, that if he did so then, he doth so now; for they were not persons extraordinarily inspired or called that the apostle intends, but the ordinary officers of the church. And if persons are not called and constituted officers, as at the first, in ordinary cases, the church is not the same as it was. And it is the concernment of those who take this work and office upon them to consider what there is in their whole undertaking that they can ascribe unto the Holy Ghost. Persons furnished with no spiritual gifts or abilities, entering into the ministry in the pursuit of secular advantages, will not easily satisfy themselves in this inquiry when they shall be willing, or be forced, at the last to make it.

    There remains yet one sort of testimonies to the same purpose, which must briefly be passed through: and they are those where he is spoken of as the object of such actings and actions of men as none but a person can be; for let them be applied unto any other object, and their inconsistency will quickly appear. Thus he is said to be tempted of them that sin: “How is it that ye have agreed together to tempt the Spirit of the Lord,” Acts 5:9.

    In what sense soever this word is used, — whether in that which is indifferent, to tr y, as God is said to tempt Abraham, or in that which is evil, to provoke or induce to sin , — it never is, it never can be, used but with respect unto a person. How can a quality, an accident, an emanation of power from God, be tempted? None can possibly be so but he that hath an understanding to consider what is proposed unto him, and a will to determine upon the proposal made. So Satan tempted our first parents; so men are tempted by their own lusts; so are we said to tempt God when we provoke him by our unbelief, or when we unwarrantably make experiments of his power; — so did they “tempt the Holy Ghost” who sinfully ventured on his omniscience, as if he would not or could not discover their sin; or on his holiness, that he would patronize their deceit.

    In like manner, Ananias is said to “lie to the Holy Ghost,” verse 3; and none is capable of lying unto any other but such an one as is capable of hearing and receiving a testimony, for a lie is a false testimony given unto that which is spoken or uttered in it. This he that is lied unto must be capable of judging and determining upon; which without personal properties of will and understanding none can be. And the Holy Ghost is here so declared to be a person as that he is declared to be one that is also divine; for so the apostle Peter declares in the exposition of the words, verse 4, “Thou hast not lied unto men, but unto God.” These things are so plain and positive that the faith of believers will not be concerned in the sophistical evasions of our adversaries. In like manner, he is said to be resisted, Acts 7:51; which is the moral reaction or opposition of one person unto another. So also is he said to he grieved, or we are commanded not to grieve him, Ephesians 4:30; as they of old were said to have “rebelled and vexed the Holy Spirit of God,” Isaiah 63:10. A figurative expression is allowed in these words. Properly, the Spirit of God cannot be grieved or vexed; for these things include such imperfections as are incompetent unto the divine nature. But as God is said to “repent” and to be “grieved at his heart,” Genesis 6:6, when he would do things correspondent unto those which men will do or judge fit to be done on such provocations, and when he would declare what effects they would produce in a nature capable of such perturbations; so on the same reason is the Spirit of God said to be grieved and vexed. But this can no way be spoken of him if he be not one whose respect unto sin may, from the analogy unto human persons, be represented by this figurative expression.

    To talk of grieving a virtue or an actual emanation of power, is to speak that which no man can understand the meaning or intention of. Surely he that is thus tempted, resisted, and grieved by sin and sinners, is one that can understand, judge, and determine concerning them; and these things being elsewhere absolutely spoken concerning God, it declares that he is so with respect unto whom they are mentioned in particular.

    The whole of the truth contended for is yet more evident in that discourse of our Savior, Matthew 12:24. The Pharisees said, “He doth not cast out devils, but by Beelzebub, the prince of devils.” And Jesus answered, verse 28, “If I cast out devils by the Spirit of God, then the kingdom of God is come unto you.” Verses 31, 32, “Wherefore I say unto you, All manner of sin and blasphemy shall be forgiven unto men: but the blasphemy against the Holy Ghost shall not be forgiven unto men. And whosoever speaketh a word against the Son of man, it shall be forgiven him: but whosoever speaketh against the Holy Ghost, it shall not be forgiven him.” To the same purpose, see Luke 12:8-10. The Spirit is here expressly distinguished from the Son, as one person from another.

    They are both spoken of with respect unto the same things in the same manner, and the things mentioned are spoken concerning them universally in the same sense. Now, if the Holy Ghost were only the virtue and power of God, then present with Jesus Christ in all that he did, Christ and that power could not be distinctly spoken against, for they were but one and the same. The Pharisees blasphemed, saying, that “he cast out devils by Beelzebub, the prince of devils.” A person they intended, and so expressed him by his name, nature, and office. To which our Savior replies, that he cast them out by the Spirit of God, — a divine person, opposed to him who is diabolical. Hereunto he immediately subjoins his instruction and caution, that they should take heed how they blasphemed that Holy Spirit, by assigning his effects and works to the prince of devils.

    And blasphemy against him directly manifests both what and who he is, especially such a peculiar blasphemy as carrieth an aggravation of guilt along with it above all that human nature in any other instance is capable of. It is supposed that blasphemy may be against the person of the Father: so was it in him who “blasphemed the name of Jehovah .and cursed” by it, Leviticus 24:11. The Son, as to his distinct person, may be blasphemed; so it is said here expressly; — and thereon it is added that the Holy Ghost also may be distinctly blasphemed, or be the immediate object of that sin which is declared to be inexpiable. To suppose now that this Holy Ghost is not a divine person is for men to dream whilst they seem to be awake.

    I suppose by all these testimonies we have fully confirmed what was designed to be proved by them, — namely, that the Holy Spirit is not a quality, as some speak, residing in the divine nature; not a mere emanation of virtue and power from God; not the acting of the power of God in and unto our sanctification; but a holy intelligent subsistent or person. And in our passage many instances have been given, whence it is undeniably evident that he is a divine, self-sufficient, self-subsisting person, together with the Father and the Son equally participant of the divine nature. Nor is this distinctly much disputed by them with whom we have to do; for they confess that such things are ascribed unto him as none but God can effect: wherefore, denying him so to be, they lay up all their hopes of success in denying him to be a person. But yet, because the subject we are upon doth require it, and it may be useful to the faith of some, I will call over a few testimonies given expressly unto his deity also.

    First, he is expressly called God; and having the name of God properly and directly given unto him, with respect unto spiritual things, or things peculiar unto God, he must have the nature of God also. Acts 5:3, Ananias is said to “lie to the Holy Ghost.” This is repeated and interpreted, verse 4, “Thou hast not lied unto men, but unto God.” The declaration of the person intended by the “Holy Ghost” is added for the aggravation of the sin, for he is “God.” The same person, the same object of the sin of Ananias, is expressed in both places; and, therefore, the Holy Ghost is God. The word for lying is the same in both places, yeu>domai , only it is used in a various construction. Verse 3, it hath the accusative case joined unto it: Yeu>sasqai> se to< Pneu~ma to< a[gion , — that “thou shouldst deceive,” or think to deceive, or attempt to deceive, “the Holy Ghost.” How? By lying unto him, in making a profession in the church wherein he presides of that which is false. This is explained, verse 4, by ejyeu>sw tw~| Qew~| , “thou hast lied unto God;” the nature of his sin being principally intended in the first place, and the object in the latter.

    Wherefore, in the progress of his discourse, the apostle calls the same sin, a “tempting of the Spirit of the Lord,” verse 9; it was the Spirit of the Lord that he lied unto, when he lied unto God. These three expressions, “The Holy Ghost,” “God,” “The Spirit of the Lord,” do denote the same thing and person, or there is no coherence in the discourse. It is excepted “That what is done against the Spirit is done against God, because he is sent by God.” It is true, as he is sent by the Father, what is done against him is morally and as to the guilt of it done against the Father. And so our Savior tells us with respect unto what was done against himself; for saith he, “He that despiseth me despiseth him that sent me.” But directly and immediately, both Christ and the Spirit were sinned against in their own persons. He is”God” [who is] here provoked. So also he is called “Lord,” in a sense appropriate unto God alone: 2 Corinthians 3:17,18, “Now the Lord is that Spirit;” and, “We are changed from glory to glory,” ajpo< Kuri>ou Pneu>matov , “by the Lord the Spirit,” or the Spirit of the Lord; where also divine operations are ascribed unto him. What is affirmed to this purpose, 1 Corinthians 12:6-8, hath been observed in the opening of the beginning of that chapter at the beginning of our discourse. The same, also, is drawn by just consequence from the comparing of Scriptures together, wherein what is spoken of God absolutely in one place is applied directly and immediately unto the Holy Ghost in another. To instance in one or two particulars: Leviticus 26:11,12, “I will,” saith God, “set my tabernacle among you; and I will walk among you, and will be your God, and ye shall be my people.” The accomplishment of this promise the apostle declares, 2 Corinthians 6:16, “Ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people.”

    How and by whom is this done? 1 Corinthians 3:16,17, “Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you? If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which ye are.”

    If it were, then, God who of old promised to dwell in his people, and to make them his temple thereby, then is the Holy Spirit God; for he it is who, according to that promise, thus dwelleth in them. So Deuteronomy 32:12, speaking of the people in the wilderness, he saith, “The LORD alone did lead him;” and yet, speaking of the same people, at the same time, it is said, that “the Spirit of the LORD did lead them, and caused them to rest,” Isaiah 63:14. “The Spirit of the LORD,” therefore, is Jehovah, or Jehovah alone did not lead them. That, also, which is called in the same people their “sinning against God, and provoking the Most High in the wilderness,” Psalm 78:17,18, is termed their “rebelling against and vexing the Holy Spirit,” Isaiah 63:10,11. And many other instances of an alike nature have been pleaded and vindicated by others.

    Add hereunto, in the last place, that divine properties are assigned unto him, as eternity, Hebrews 9:14, he is the “eternal Spirit;” — immensity, <19D907> Psalm 139:7, “Whither shall I go from thy Spirit?” — omnipotency, Micah 2:7, “The Spirit of the LORD is not straitened,” compared with Isaiah 40:28; “The power of the Spirit of God,” Romans 15:19; — prescience, Acts 1:16, This scripture must be fulfilled, “which the Holy Ghost by the mouth of David spake before concerning Judas;” — omniscience, 1 Corinthians 2:10,11, “The Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God;” — sovereign authority over the church, Acts 13:2,4, 20:28. The divine works, also, which are assigned unto him are usually, and to good purpose, pleaded in the vindication of the same truth; but these in the progress of our discourse I shall have occasion distinctly to consider and inquire into, and, therefore, shall not in this place insist upon them. What hath been proposed, cleared, and confirmed, may suffice as unto our present purpose, that we may know who he is concerning whom, — his works and grace, — we do design to treat.

    I have but one thing more to add concerning the being and personality of the Holy Spirit; and this is, that in the order of subsistence, he is the third person in the holy Trinity. So it is expressed in the solemn numeration of them, where their order gives great direction unto gospel worship and obedience: Matthew 28:19, “Baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost.” This order, I confess, in their numeration, because of the equality of the persons in the same nature, is sometimes varied. So, Revelation 1:4,5, “Grace be unto you, and peace, from him which is, and which was, and which is to come; and from the seven Spirits which are before his throne; and from Jesus Christ.”

    The Holy Spirit, under the name of the seven Spirits before the throne of God, because of his various and perfect operations in and towards the church, is reckoned up in order before the Son, Jesus Christ. And so in Paul’s euctical conclusion unto his epistles, the Son is placed before the Father: 2 Corinthians 13:14, “The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Ghost, be with you all.”

    And some think that the Holy Ghost is mentioned in the first place, Colossians 2:2, “The acknowledgment of the mystery of God, and of the Father, and of Christ.”

    In this expression of them, therefore, we may use our liberty, they being all one, “God over all, blessed for ever.” But in their true and natural order of subsistence, and consequently of operation, the Holy Spirit is the third person; for as to his personal subsistence, he “proceedeth from the Father and the Son,” being equally the Spirit of them both, as hath been declared.

    This constitutes the natural order between the persons, which is unalterable. On this depends the order of his operation; for his working is a consequent of the order of his subsistence. Thus the Father is said to send him, and so is the Son also, John 14:16,26, 16:7. And he is thus said to be sent by the Father and the Son, because he is the Spirit of the Father and Son, proceeding from both, and is the next cause in the application of the Trinity unto external works. But as he is thus sent, so his own will is equally in and unto the work for which he is sent; as the Father is said to send the Son, and yet it was also his own love and grace to come unto us and to save us. And this ariseth from hence, that in the whole economy of the Trinity, as to the works that outwardly are of God, especially the works of grace, the order of the subsistence of the persons in the same nature is represented unto us, and they have the same dependence on each other in their operations as they have in their subsistence. The Father is the fountain of all, as in being and existence, so in operation. The Son is of the Father, begotten of him, and, therefore, as unto his work, is sent by him; but his own will is in and unto what he is sent about. The Holy Spirit proceedeth from the Father and the Son, and, therefore, is sent and given by them as to all the works which he immediately effecteth; but yet his own will is the direct principle of all that he doth, — he divideth unto every one according to his own will. And thus much may suffice to be spoken about the being of the Holy Spirit, and the order of his subsistence in the blessed Trinity.

    CHAPTER 4.

    PECULIAR WORKS OF THE HOLY SPIRIT IN THE FIRST OR OLD CREATION. Things to be observed in divine operations — The works of God, how ascribed absolutely unto God, and how distinctly to each person — The reason hereof — Perfecting acts in divine works ascribed unto the Holy Spirit, and why — Peculiar works of the Spirit with respect unto the old creation — The parts of the old creation — Heaven and its host — What the host of heaven — The host of the earth — The host of heaven completed by the Spirit — And of the earth — His moving on the old creation, <19A430>Psalm 104:30 — The creation of man; the work of the Spirit therein — The work of the Spirit in the preservation of all things when created, natural and moral — Farther instances thereof, in and out of the church — Work of the Spirit of God in the old creation, why sparingly delivered. INTENDING to treat of the operations of the Holy Ghost, or those which are peculiar unto him, some things must be premised concerning the operation of the Godhead in general, and the manner thereof; and they are such as are needful to guide us in many passages of the Scripture, and to direct us aright in the things in particular which now lie before us. I say, then, — 1. That all divine operations are usually ascribed unto God absolutely. So it is said God made all things; and so of all other works, whether in nature or in grace. And the reason hereof is, because the several persons are undivided in their operations, acting all by the same will, the same wisdom, the same power. Every person, therefore, is the author of every work of God, because each person is God, and the divine nature is the same undivided principle of all divine operations; and this ariseth from the unity of the persons in the same essence. But as to the manner of subsistence therein, there is distinction, relation, and order between and among them; and hence there is no divine work but is distinctly assigned unto each person, and eminently unto one. So is it in the works of the old creation, and so in the new, and in all particulars of them. Thus, the creation of the world is distinctly ascribed to the Father as his work, Acts 4:24; and to the Son as his, John 1:3; and also to the Holy Spirit, Job 33:4; but by the way of eminence to the Father, and absolutely to God, who is Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

    The reason, therefore, why the works of God are thus distinctly ascribed unto each person is because, in the undivided operation of the divine nature, each person doth the same work in the order of their subsistence; not one as the instrument of the other, or merely employed by the other, but as one common principle of authority, wisdom, love, and power. How come they, then, eminently to be assigned one to one person, another to another? as unto the Father are assigned opera naturae, the works of nature, or the old creation; to the Son, opera gratiae procuratae, all divine operations that belong unto the recovery of mankind by grace; and unto the Spirit, opera gratiae applicatcae, the works of God whereby grace is made effectual unto us. And this is done, — (1.) When any especial impression is made of the especial property of any person on any work; then is that work assigned peculiarly to that person. So there is of the power and authority of the Father on the old creation, and of the grace and wisdom of the Son on the new. (2.) Where there is a peculiar condescension of any person unto a work, wherein the others have no concurrence but by approbation and consent.

    Such was the susception of the human nature by the Son, and all that he did therein; and such was the condescension of the Holy Ghost also unto his office, which entitles him peculiarly and by way of eminence unto his own immediate works. 2. Whereas the order of operation among the distinct persons depends on the order of their subsistence in the blessed Trinity, in every great work of God, the concluding, completing, perfecting acts are ascribed unto the Holy Ghost. This we shall find in all the instances of them that will fall under our consideration. Hence, the immediate actings of the Spirit are the most hidden, curious, and mysterious, as those which contain the perfecting part of the works of God. Some seem willing to exclude all thoughts or mention of him from the works of God; but, indeed, without him no part of any work of God is perfect or complete. The beginning of divine operations is assigned unto the Father, as he is fons et origo Deitatis, — “the fountain of the Deity itself:” “Of him, and through him, and to him, are all things,” Romans 11:36. The subsisting, establishing, and “upholding of all things,” is ascribed unto the Son: “He is before all things, and by him all things consist,” Colossians 1:17. As he made all things with the Father, so he gives them a consistency, a permanency, in a peculiar manner, as he is the power and wisdom of the Father. He “upholdeth all things by the word of his power,” Hebrews 1:3. And the finishing and perfecting of all these works is ascribed to the Holy Spirit, as we shall see. I say not this as though one person succeeded unto another in their operation, or as though where one ceased and gave over a work, the other took it up and carried it on; for every divine work, and every part of every divine work, is the work of God, that is, of the whole Trinity, inseparably and undividedly: but on those divine works which outwardly are of God there is an especial impression of the order of the operation of each person, with respect unto their natural and necessary subsistence, as also with regard unto their internal characteristical properties, whereby we are distinctly taught to know them and adore them. And the due consideration of this order of things will direct us in the right understanding of the proposals that are made unto our faith concerning God in his works and word.

    These things being premised, we proceed to consider what are the peculiar operations of the Holy Spirit, as revealed unto us in the Scripture. Now, all the works of God may be referred unto two heads: — 1. Those of nature; 2. Those of grace; — or the works of the old and new creation. And we must inquire what are the especial operations of the Holy Spirit in and about these works, which shall be distinctly explained.

    The work of the old creation had two parts: — 1. That which concerned the inanimate part of it in general, with the influence it had into the production of animated or living but brute creatures. 2. The rational or intelligent part of it, with the law of its obedience unto God, [and] the especial uses and ends for which it was made. In both these sorts we shall inquire after and consider the especial works of the Holy Spirit.

    The general parts of the creation are the heavens and the earth: Genesis 1:1, “In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.” And what belongs unto them is called their “host:” chap. <010201> 2:1, “The heavens and the earth were finished, and all the host of them.” The host of heaven is the sun, moon, and stars, and the angels themselves. So are they called, 1 Kings 22:19, “I saw the LORD sitting on his throne” µyimæV;hæ ab;x]Alk;w] , “and all the host of heaven standing by him, on his right hand and on his left;” — that is, all the holy angels, as Daniel 7:10; Chronicles 18:18. And the host of God: Genesis 32:1,2, “And Jacob went on his way, and the angels of God met him. And when Jacob saw them, he said, This is God’s host.” Hnej\mæ , the word he useth, signifieth a host encamped. Stratia< oujra>niov , Luke 2:13, “The heavenly host,” or army. The sun, moon, and stars, are also called the host of heaven: Deuteronomy 4:19, “Lest thou lift up thine eyes unto heaven, and when thou seest the sun, and the moon, and the stars, even all the host of heaven.” So Isaiah 34:4; Jeremiah 33:22. This was that host of heaven which the Jews idolatrously worshipped: chapter 8:2, “They shall spread them before the sun, and the moon, and all the host of heaven, whom they have loved, and whom they have served, after whom they have walked, and whom they have sought, and whom they have worshipped.” The expressions are multiplied, to show that they used all ways of ascribing that divine honor unto them which was due to God alone, whom only they ought to have loved, to have served, to have walked after, to have sought and worshipped. So Jeremiah 19:13. This they called µyimæV;hæ tk,l,m] , the “queen of heaven,” chapter 44:17, because of its beauty and adornings. The “host of the earth” is men and beasts, with all other creatures that either grow out of it or live upon it, and are nourished by it.

    And these things are called the host of heaven and earth upon a double account: — 1. Because of their order and beautiful disposition. A host properly is a number of men put into a certain order, for some certain end or purpose; and all their strength and power, all their terror and beauty, consisteth in and ariseth from that order. Without this they are but a confused multitude. But a host or army with banners is beautiful and terrible, Song of Solomon 6:10. Before things were cast into this order, the universe was, as it were, full of confusion; it had no beauty nor glory, for the “earth was without form and void,” Genesis 1:2. Hence the Vulgar Latin in this place renders the word by “ornatus eorum,” all their beauty and adorning; for the creation and beautiful disposal of these hosts gave them beauty and ornament: and thence do the Greeks call the world ko>smov , — that is, an adorned thing. 2. Because all creatures in heaven and earth are God’s armies, to accomplish his irresistible will and pleasure.

    Hence he often styles himself “The LORD of hosts,” — of both these hosts, that above, of the heavens, the holy angels and the celestial bodies, and that of all creatures beneath in the earth; for all these he useth and applieth at his pleasure, to do his will and execute his judgments. Thus, one of those angels slew a whole host of men in one night, Isaiah 37:36.

    And it is said that the “stars in their courses fought against Sisera,” Judges 5:20. God overruled the influences of heaven against him, though it may be angels also are here intended. And among the meanest creatures of the earth, he calls locusts and caterpillars, when he sends them to destroy a country for sin, his host or “army,” Joel 2:11. This by the way.

    Now, the forming and perfecting of this host of heaven and earth is that which is assigned peculiarly to the Spirit of God; and hereby the work of creation was completed and finished. First, for the heavens: Job 26:13, “By his Spirit he hath garnished the heavens; his hand hath formed the crooked serpent;” — or rather, “his Spirit hath garnished;” for hr;p]Vi agrees with jæWr , the “Spirit,” and not with “he;” and the word signifies to “adorn,” to make fair, to render beautiful to the eye. Thus the heavens were garnished by the Spirit of God, when, by the creation and disposal of the aspectable host of them, he rendered them so glorious and beautiful as we behold. So the Targum, “His Spirit beautified the face of the heavens,” or gave them that comely beauty and order wherein their face appeareth unto us. Hence the heavens, as adorned with the moon and stars, are said to be the “work of God’s fingers,” Psalm 8:3, — that is, not only those which were powerfully made, but also curiously wrought and adorned by the Spirit of God; for by the finger or fingers of God the Spirit of God is in an especial manner intended. Hence those words of our Savior, Luke 11:20, “But if I with the finger of God cast out devils,” are, Matthew 12:28, “If I cast out devils by the Spirit of God.” By him were the heavens, as it were, curiously wrought, adorned, garnished, rendered beautiful and glorious, to show forth the praise of his power and wisdom, Psalm 19:1. And by the “crooked serpent,” which is added to the “garnishing of the heavens,” the Hebrews understand the galaxy or milky way; which to the eye represents the moving or writhing of a serpent in the water. This, then, is peculiarly assigned to the Spirit with respect to the heavens and their host: The completing, finishing work is ascribed unto him; which we must understand by the rules before mentioned, and not exclusively to the other persons.

    And thus was it also in the earth. God first out of nothing created the earth, which comprised the whole inferior globe, which afterward divided itself into seas and dry land, as the heavens contain in that expression of their creation all that is above and over it. The whole material mass of earth and water, wherewith probably the more solid and firm substance was covered, and as it were overwhelmed, is intended by that “earth” which was first created; for immediately there is mention made of the “deep” and the “waters,” without any intimation of their production but what is contained in that of the creation of the earth, Genesis 1:2. This mass being thus framed and mixed, the “Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters;” not taken distinctly, but as containing that radical humor which was the material principle of life and being unto all creatures: tp,j,ræm] µyhiloa’ jWrw] µyiM;hæ ynep]Al[æ . The word merachepheth signifies an easy, gentle motion, such as a dove, or other fowl, useth over its nest or young ones, either to communicate vital heat unto its eggs, or to cherish and defend its young. And this will no way consist with that exposition which some would give in this place of µyhiloa’ jæWr . “Ruah , they say, “here signifies ‘the wind,’ as it doth sometimes; and it is called the ‘wind of God,’ because it was great and mighty: for this phrase of speech is usual in the sacred language to set out the greatness and singular eminency of anything. So a great trembling is called a ‘trembling of God,’ 1 Samuel 14:15; great cedars, the ‘cedars of God,’ Psalm 80:10; and the like.” But, — 1. When was this wind created? The meteors were not made before the fourth day, with the firmament, the place of their residence. And whence or what this wind should be is not to be discovered. 2. The word here used signifies such an “easy and gentle motion” as is in birds when they move themselves upon their nests. And it is but three times used in the Scripture, — in this place, and Deuteronomy 32:11, Jeremiah 23:9. In Deuteronomy it is expressly applied unto the motion of an eagle over her young, for their safety, protection, and growth: wyp;n;K] crop]yi ãjeræy] , “As an eagle fluttereth, spreading her wings over her young.” And in the other place we render it “shake:” “All my bones shake,” — that is, are in a trembling motion, like the feathers of a fowl over her nest. No such great and violent wind, therefore, as from thence should be called a wind of God, can be intended in this place; but it is the Spirit of God himself and his work that is expressed.

    This, therefore, was the work of the Holy Spirit of God in reference unto the earth and the host thereof: The whole matter being created out of which all living creatures were to be educed, and of which they were to be made, he takes upon him the cherishing and preservation of it; that as it had its subsistence by the power of the Word of God, it might be carried on towards that form, order, beauty, and perfection, that it was designed unto. To this purpose he communicated unto it a quickening and prolific virtue, inlaying it with the seeds of animal life unto all kinds of things.

    Hence, upon the command of God, it brought forth all sorts of creatures in abundance, according to the seeds and principles of life which were communicated unto the rude, inform chaos, by the cherishing motion of the Holy Spirit. Without him all was a dead sea, a confused deep, with darkness upon it, able to bring forth nothing, nor more prepared to bring forth any one thing than another; but by the moving of the Spirit of God upon it, the principles of all those kinds, sorts, and forms of things, which, in an inconceivable variety, make up its host and ornament, were communicated unto it. And this is a better account of the original of all things, in their several kinds, than any [that] is given by ancient or modern philosophers. And hence was the old tradition of all things being formed of water, which the apostle alludes unto, 2 Peter 3:5. The whole is declared by Cyprian, whose words I have, therefore, transcribed at large. And as at the first creation, so in the course of providence, this work of cherishing and nourishing the creatures is assigned in an especial manner unto the Spirit: <19A430> Psalm 104:30, “Thou sendest forth thy Spirit, they are created; and thou renewest the face of the earth.” The making or creation of things here intended is not the first great work of the creation of all, but the daily production of creatures in and according to their kind; for in the verse foregoing the Psalmist treats of the decay of all sorts of creatures in the world, by a providential cutting off and finishing of their lives: Verse 29, “Thou hidest thy face, they are troubled: thou takest away their breath, they die, and return to their dust.” That, under this continual decay and dying of all sorts of creatures, the world doth not come to emptiness and desolation, the only reason is, because the Spirit of God, whose office and work it is to uphold and preserve all things continually, produceth by his power a new supply of creatures in the room of them that fall off like leaves from the trees, and return to their dust everyday. And whereas the earth itself, the common nurse of them all, seems in the revolution of every year to be at an end of its use and work, having death brought upon the face of it, and ofttimes entering deep into its bowels, the Spirit of God, by its influential concurrence, renews it again, causing everything afresh to bring forth fruit according unto its kind, whereby its face receiveth a new beauty and adorning. And this is the substance of what the Scripture expressly asserts concerning the work of the Spirit of God towards the inanimate part of the creation. His actings in reference unto man, and that obedience which he owed to God, according to the law and covenant of his creation, is nextly to be considered.

    Man in his creation falleth under a twofold notion; for he may be considered either merely naturally, as to the essentially constitutive parts of his being, or morally also, with reference unto his principles of obedience, the law given unto him, and the end proposed as his reward.

    And these things are distinctly proposed unto our contemplation in the Scripture. The first is expressed, Genesis 2:7, “And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul.” 1. There is the matter whereof he was formed; 2. The quickening principle added thereunto; and, 3. The effect of their conjunction and union.

    For the matter he was made of, it is said he was formed hm;d;a\jæAˆmi rp;[; , [of] “dust of the ground,” or dust gathered together on a heap from and upon the ground: lbeJe twOrp][æ caro , Proverbs 8:26. So is God, the great dhmiourgo>v , the universal framer of all, represented as an artificer, who first prepares his matter, and then forms it as it seemeth good unto him.

    And this is mentioned for two ends: — First, To set forth the excellency, power, and wisdom of God, who out of such vile, contemptible matter as a heap of dust, swept as it were together on the ground, could and did make so excellent, curious, and glorious a fabric as is the body of man, or as was the body of Adam before the fall. Secondly, To mind man of his original, that he might be kept humble and in a meet dependence on the wisdom and bounty of his Creator; for thence it was, and not from the original matter whereof he was made, that he became so excellent. Hereof Abraham makes his solemn acknowledgment before the Lord: Genesis 18:27, “Behold now, I have taken upon me to speak unto the Lord, which am but dust and ashes.”

    He abaseth himself with the remembrance of his original And this, as it were, God reproacheth Adam withal upon his sin and transgression: Genesis 3:19, “Thou shalt return unto the ground; for out of it wast thou taken: for dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return.”

    He lets him know that he had now, by sin, lost that immortality which he was made in a condition to have enjoyed; and that his body, according to his nature and constitution, should return again into its first principles, or the dust of the earth. Into this formed dust, secondly, God breathed µyYijæ tmæv]ni , the “breath of life;” divinae aurae particulam, “a vital immortal spirit.” This God breathed into him, as giving him something of himself, somewhat immediately of his own, not made out of any procreated matter.

    This is the rational soul, or intelligent spirit. Thus man became a middle creature between the angels above and the sensitive animals below. His body was formed, as the beasts, from the matter made the first day, and digested into dry land on the third day; his soul was an immediate production of and emanation from the divine power, as the angels were. So when, in the works of the new creation, our blessed Savior bestowed the Holy Ghost on his disciples, he breathed on them, as a sign that he gave them something of his own. This celestial spirit, this heavenly breath, was unto man a quickening principle; for, thirdly, the effect hereof is, that man became jY;jæ vp,n,l] , a “living soul.” His body was hereby animated, and capable of all vital acts. Hence he could move, eat, see, hear, etc.; for the natural effects of this breath of life are only intended in this expression.

    Thus the “first man Adam was made a living soul,” 1 Corinthians 15:45.

    This was the creation of man, as unto the essentially constituting principles of his nature.

    With respect unto his moral condition and principle of obedience unto God, it is expressed, Genesis 1:26,27, “And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion,” etc. “So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him.”

    He made him “upright,” Ecclesiastes 7:29, perfect in his condition, every way complete, — fit, disposed, and able to and for the obedience required of him; without weakness, distemper, disease, contrariety of principles, inclinations, or reasonings. A universal rectitude of nature, consisting in light, power, and order, in his understanding, mind, and affections, was the principal part of this image of God wherein he was created. And this appears, as from the nature of the thing itself, so from the description which the apostle giveth us of the renovation of that image in us by the grace of Christ, Ephesians 4:24, Colossians 3:10. And under both these considerations we may weigh the especial operations of the Spirit of God: — First, As to the essential principles of the nature of man, it is not for nothing that God expresseth his communication of a spirit of life by his breathing into him: “God breathed into his nostrils the breath of life.” The Spirit of God and the breath of God are the same, only, the one expression is proper, the other metaphorical; wherefore, this breathing is the especial acting of the Spirit of God. The creation of the human soul, a vital immortal principle and being, is the immediate work of the Spirit of God: Job 33:4, “The Spirit of God hath made me, and the breath of the Almighty hath given me life.” Here, indeed, the creation and production of both the essential parts of human nature, body and soul, are ascribed unto the same author; for the Spirit of God and the breath of God are the same, but several effects being mentioned causeth a repetition of the same cause under several names. This Spirit of God first made man, or formed his body of the dust, and then gave him that breath of life whereby he became a “living soul.” So, then, under this first consideration, the creation of man is assigned unto the Holy Spirit, for man was the perfection of the inferior creation; and in order unto the glory of God, by him were all other things created. Here, therefore, are his operations distinctly declared, to whom the perfecting and completing of all divine works is peculiarly committed.

    Secondly, We may consider the moral state and condition of man, with the furniture of his mind and soul, in reference unto his obedience to God and his enjoyment of him. This was the principal part of that image of God wherein he was created. Three things were required to render man idoneous, or fit unto that life to God for which he was made: — First, An ability to discern the mind and will of God with respect unto all the duty and obedience that God required of him; as also so far to know the nature and properties of God as to believe him the only proper object of all acts and duties of religious obedience, and an all-sufficient satisfaction and reward in this world and to eternity. Secondly, A free, uncontrolled, unentangled disposition to every duty of the law of his creation, in order unto living unto God. Thirdly, An ability of mind and will, with a readiness of compliance in his affections, for a due regular performance of all duties, and abstinence from all sin. These things belonged unto the integrity of his nature, with the uprightness of the state and condition wherein he was made. And all these things were the peculiar effects of the immediate operation of the Holy Ghost; for although this rectitude of his nature be distinguishable and separable from the faculties of the soul of man, yet in his first creation they were not actually distinguished from them, nor superadded, or infused into them when created, but were concreated with them, — that is, his soul was made meet and able to live to God, as his sovereign lord, chiefest good, and last end. And so they were all from the Holy Ghost, from whom the soul was, as hath been declared. Yea, suppose these abilities to be superadded unto man’s natural faculties, as gifts supernatural (which yet is not so), they must be acknowledged in a peculiar manner to be from the Holy Spirit; for in the restoration of these abilities unto our minds, in our renovation unto the image of God in the gospel, it is plainly asserted that the Holy Ghost is the immediate operator of them. And he doth thereby restore his own work, and not take the work of another out of his hand: for in the new creation the Father, in the way of authority, designs it, and brings all things unto a head in Christ, Ephesians 1:10, which retrieved his original peculiar work; and the Son gave unto all things a new consistency, which belonged unto him from the beginning, Colossians 1:17. So also the Holy Spirit renews in us the image of God, the original implantation whereof was his peculiar work.

    And thus Adam may be said to have had the Spirit of God in his innocency. He had him in these peculiar effects of his power and goodness; and he had him according to the tenor of that covenant whereby it was possible that he should utterly lose him, as accordingly it came to pass. He had him not by especial inhabitation, for the whole world was then the temple of God. In the covenant of grace, founded in the person and on the mediation of Christ, it is otherwise. On whomsoever the Spirit of God is bestowed for the renovation of the image of God in him, he abides with him forever. But in all men, from first to last, all goodness, righteousness, and truth, are the “fruits of the Spirit,” Ephesians 5:9.

    The works of God being thus finished, and the whole frame of nature set upon its wheels, it is not deserted by the Spirit of God; for as the preservation, continuance, and acting of all things in the universe, according to their especial nature and mutual application of one unto another, are all from the powerful and efficacious influences of divine Providence, so there are particular operations of the Holy Spirit in and about all things, whether merely natural and animal, or also rational and moral. An instance in each kind may suffice. For the first (as we have showed), the propagation of the succeeding generations of creatures and the annual renovation of the face of the earth are ascribed unto him, <19A430> Psalm 104:30; for as we would own the due and just powers and operations of second causes, so we abhor that atheism which ascribes unto them an original and independent efficacy and causality, without a previous acting in, by, and upon them of the power of God. And this is here ascribed unto the Spirit, whom God sendeth forth unto that end and purpose. As to rational and moral actions, such as the great affairs of the world do consist in and are disposed of by, he hath in them also a peculiar efficiency. Thus those great virtues of wisdom, courage, and fortitude, which have been used for the producing of great effects in the world, are of his especial operation. So when God stirred up men to rule and govern his people of old, to fight against and to subdue their enemies, it is said the Spirit of God came upon them: Judges 3:10, “The Spirit of the LORD came upon Othniel, and he judged Israel, and went out to war.”

    The Spirit of God endued him with wisdom for government, and with courage and skill in conduct for war. So chapter 6:34. And although instances hereof are given us principally among the people of God, yet wherever men in the world have been raised up to do great and wonderful things, whereby God executeth his judgments, [and] fulfilleth any of his promises or his threatenings, even they also have received of the especial gifts and assistances of the Holy Spirit of God. For this reason is Cyrus expressly called “God’s anointed,” Isaiah 45:1. Cyrus had, by God’s designation, a great and mighty work to effect. He was utterly to ruin and destroyeth great, ancient, Babylonian monarchy. God had a concern herein as to the avenging of the quarrel of his people, and therein the accomplishment of many promises and threatenings. The work itself was great, arduous, and insuperable to ordinary human abilities. Wherefore God “sends his Spirit” to fill Cyrus with wisdom, courage, skill in all military affairs, that he might go through with the work whereunto, in the providence of God, he was designed. Hence is he called “God’s anointed,” because the unction of kings of old was an instituted sign of the communication of the gifts of the Holy Ghost for government unto them.

    See Isaiah 45:1-4; and other instances of the like kind might be given.

    Thus, when the church was to have a blessed restoration of the worship of God, after the return of the people from their captivity, Zerubbabel is, in an especial manner, called to begin and carry on this work in the building of the temple. But the difficulties he had to conflict withal were great, and appeared insuperable. The people were few and poor, and the oppositions made unto them and their work great and many, especially what arose from the power of the Persian monarchy, under whose rule and oppression they were; for although they had permission and encouragement from Cyrus for their work, yet immediately upon his death they were oppressed again, and their “work caused to cease.” This power they could no way conflict withal; yet God tells them that all this opposition shall be removed and conquered. “Who art thou,” saith he, “O great mountain? before Zerubbabel thou shalt become a plain,” Zechariah 4:7; — “All the hinderance that arose from that great mountain of the Persian empire shall be removed out of the way, and the progress of Zerubbabel in his work shall be made smooth, plain, and easy.” But how shall this be effected and brought about? “Not by an army or ‘by might, nor by power, but by my Spirit, saith the LORD of hosts,’ “ verse 6; — “You would suppose that it must be done by armies and open force, which you are altogether insufficient for; but this is not the way I will take in this matter.

    My Spirit shall work in their hearts, minds, and counsels, that, contrary to your fears, they shall themselves further that work which hitherto they have impeded; and he shall work in the minds and counsels of others, to oppose them and entangle them where they would hinder it, until they are destroyed, and that great mountain be fully removed;” — as in the event it came to pass. So that the providential alterations that are wrought in the world are effects of his power and efficacy also.

    And thus have we taken a short view of the dispensation and works of the Spirit of God in the first creation. But the effect hereof being a state of things that quickly passed away, and being of no advantage to the church after the entrance of sin, what belonged unto it is but sparingly delivered in the Scriptures, the true sense of what is so delivered depending much on the analogy of the following works of God in man’s renovation and recovery. But as to the new creation (which falls under our consideration in the next place, as that alone which is directly intended by us), the foundation, building up, and finishing the church of God therein, being the things whereon depends the principal manifestation of the glory of God, and wherein the great concerns of all the elect do lie, they are more fully and directly declared in the Scripture; and in reference unto them we shall find a full, distinct declaration of the whole dispensation and work of the Spirit of God.

    CHAPTER 5.

    WAY AND MANNER OF THE DIVINE DISPENSATION OF THE HOLY SPIRIT. Dispensation of the Spirit to be learned from the Scripture only — General adjuncts thereof — The administration of the Spirit and his own application of himself to his work, how expressed — The Spirit, how and in what sense given and received — What is included in the giving of the Spirit — What in receiving of him — Privilege and advantage in receiving the Spirit — How God is said to send the Spirit — What is included in sending — How God ministers the Spirit — How God is said to put his Spirit on us — What is included in that expression — The Spirit, how poured out — What is included and intended herein — The ways of the Spirit’s application of himself unto his work — His proceeding from Father and Son explained — How he cometh unto us — His falling on men — His resting — How and in what sense he is said to depart from any person — Of the distributions of the Holy Ghost, Hebrews 2:4 — Exposition of them vindicated. BEFORE we treat of the especial operations, works, and effects of the Holy Ghost in and on the new creation, the order of things requires that we should first speak somewhat of the general nature of God’s dispensation of him, and of his own application of himself unto his actings and workings in this matter; for this is the foundation of all that he doth, and this, for our edification, we are instructed in by the Scriptures. Unto them in this whole discourse we must diligently attend; for we are exercised in such a subject as wherein we have no rule, nor guide, nor anything to give us assistance but pure revelation. And what I have to offer concerning these things consists upon the matter solely in the explication of those places of Scripture wherein they are revealed. We must, therefore, consider, — 1. What we are taught on the part of God the Father with respect unto the Holy Spirit and his work; and, 2. What relates immediately unto himself.

    I. God’s disposal of the Spirit unto his work is five ways expressed in the Scripture: for he is said, — 1. To give or bestow him; 2. To send him; 3. To minister him; 4. To pour him out; 5. To put him on us.

    And his own application of himself unto his work is likewise five ways expressed: for he is said, — 1 . To proceed; 2. To come , or come upon; 3. To fall on men; 4. To rest; and, 5. To depart .

    These things, containing the general manner of his administration and dispensation, must be first spoken unto.

    First, He is said to be given of God; that is, of God the Father, who is said to give him in an especial manner: Luke 11:13, “Your heavenly Father will give the Holy Spirit to them that ask him;” John 3:34. 1 John 3:24, “He hath given the Spirit unto us.” John 14:16, “The Father shall give you another Comforter;” “which is the Holy Ghost,” verse 26. And in answer unto this act of God, those on whom he is bestowed are said to receive him: John 7:39, “This he spake of the Spirit, which they that believe on him should receive.” 1 Corinthians 2:12, “We have received the Spirit which is of God.” 2 Corinthians 11:4, “If ye receive another Spirit, which ye have not received;” where the receiving of the Spirit is made a matter common unto all believers. So Galatians 3:2; Acts 8:15,19; John 14:17, 20:22. For these two, giving and receiving, are related, the one supposing the other. And this expression of the dispensation of the Holy Ghost is irreconcilable unto the opinion before rejected, — namely, that he is nothing but a transient accident, or an occasional emanation of the power of God; for how or in what sense can an act of the power of God be given by him or be received by us? It can, indeed, in no sense be either the object of God’s giving or of our receiving, especially as this is explained in those other expressions of the same thing before laid down, and afterward considered. It must be somewhat that hath a subsistence of its own that is thus given and received. So the Lord Christ is frequently said to be given of God and received by us. It is true, we may be said, in another sense, to “receive the grace of God;” which is the exception of the Socinians unto this consideration, and the constant practice they use to evade plain testimonies of the Scripture: for if they can find any words in them used elsewhere in another sense, they suppose it sufficient to contradict their plain design and proper meaning in another place. Thus we are exhorted “not to receive the grace of God in vain,” <470601> Corinthians 6:1. I answer, The grace of God may be considered two ways: — 1. Objectively, for the revelation or doctrine of grace; as Titus 2:11,12.

    So we are said to receive it when we believe and profess it, in opposition unto them by whom it is opposed and rejected. And this is the same with our receiving the word preached, so often mentioned in the Scripture, Acts 2:41, James 1:21; which is by faith to give it entertainment in our hearts: which is the meaning of the word in this place, 2 Corinthians 6:1. Having taken the profession of the doctrine of grace, that is, of the gospel, upon us, we ought to express its power in holiness and suitable obedience, without which it will be of no use or benefit unto us. And the grace of God is sometimes, — 2. Taken subjectively, for the grace which God is pleased to communicate unto us, or gracious qualities that he works in our souls by his Spirit. In this sense, also, we are sometimes said to receive it: 1 Corinthians 4:7, “Who maketh thee to differ from another? and what hast thou that thou didst not receive?” where the apostle speaketh both of the gifts and graces of the Spirit. And the reason hereof is, because in the communication of internal grace unto us, we contribute nothing to the procurement of it, but are merely capable recipient subjects. And this grace is a quality or spiritual habit, permanent and abiding in the soul. But in neither of these senses can we be said to receive the Spirit of God, nor God to give him, if he be only the power of God making an impression on our minds and spirits, — no more than a man can be said to receive the sunbeams, which cause heat in him by their natural efficacy, falling on him: much less can the giving and receiving of the Spirit be so interpreted, considering what is said of his being sent and his own coming, with the like declarations of God’s dispensation of him; whereof afterward.

    Now, this giving of the Spirit, as it is the act of him by whom he is given, denotes authority, freedom, and bounty; and, on the part of them that receive him, privilege and advantage. 1. Authority. He that gives anything hath authority to dispose of it. None can give but of his own, and that which in some sense he hath in his power. Now, the Father is said to give the Spirit, and that upon our request, as Luke 11:13. This, I acknowledge, wants not some difficulty in its explication; for if the Holy Ghost be God himself, as hath been declared, how can he be said to be given by the Father, as it were in a way of authority? But keeping ourselves to the sacred rule of truth, we may solve this difficulty without curiosity or danger. Wherefore, — (1.) The order of the subsistence of the three persons in the divine nature is regarded herein; for the Father, as hath been showed, is the fountain and original of the Trinity, the Son being of him, and the Spirit of them both.

    Hence, he is to be considered as the principal author and cause of all those works which are immediately wrought by either of them; for of whom the Son and Spirit have their essence, as to their personality, from him have they life and power of operation, John 5:19,26. Therefore, when the Holy Spirit comes unto any, the Father is said to give him, for he is the Spirit of the Father. And this authority of the Father doth immediately respect the work itself, and not the person working; but the person is said to be given for the work’s sake. (2.) The economy of the blessed Trinity in the work of our redemption and salvation is respected in this order of things. The fountain hereof lies in the love, wisdom, grace, and counsel of the Father. Whatever is done in the pursuit hereof is originally the gift of the Father, because it is designed unto no other end but to make his grace effectual. Hence is he said to send and give his Son also. And the whole work of the Holy Ghost, as our sanctifier, guide, comforter, and advocate, is to make the love of the Father effectual unto us, John 16:13,14. As this, out of his own love and care, he hath condescended unto, so the fountain of it being in the love and purpose of the Father, and that also, or the making them effectual, being their end, he is rightly said to be given of him. (3.) In the whole communication of the Spirit, respect is had unto his effects, or the ends for which he is given. What they are shall be afterward declared. Now, the authority of this giving respects principally his gifts and graces, which depend on the authority of the Father. 2. This expression denotes freedom. What is given might be withheld. This is the “gift of God” (as he is called, John 4:10), not the purchase of our endeavors, nor the reward of our desert. Some men delight to talk of their purchasing grace and glory; but the one and the other are to be “bought without money and without price.” Even “eternal life” itself, the end of all our obedience, is the “gift of God, through Jesus Christ our Lord,” Romans 6:23. The Scripture knows of no earnings that men can make of themselves but death; for as Austin says, “Quicquid tuum est peccatum est:” and the wages of sin is death. To what end or purpose soever the Spirit is bestowed upon us, whether it be for the communication of grace or the distribution of gifts, or for consolation and refreshment, it is of the mere gift of God, from his absolute and sovereign freedom.

    In answer hereunto they are said to receive him, on whom as a gift he is bestowed; as in the testimonies before mentioned. And in receiving, two things are implied: — 1. That we contribute nothing thereunto which should take off from the thing received as a gift. Receiving answers giving, and that implies freedom in the giver. 2. That it is their privilege and advantage; for what a man receives, he doth it for his own good. First, then, we have him freely as a gift of God; for to receive him in general is to be made partaker of him, as unto those ends for which he is given of God. Be those ends what they will, in respect of them they are said to receive him who are made partakers of him. Two things may be pleaded to take off the freedom of this gift and of our reception, and to cast it on something necessary and required on our part; for, — (1.) Our Savior tells us “that the world cannot receive him, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him,” John 14:17. Now, if the “world” cannot receive him, there is required an ability and preparation in them that do so, that are “not of the world;” and so the gift and communication of the Spirit depends on that qualification in us. But all men are naturally alike the world and of it. No one man by nature hath more ability or strength in spiritual things than another; for all are equally “dead in trespasses and sins,” all equally “children of wrath.” It must, therefore, be inquired how some come to have this ability and power to receive the Spirit of God, which others have not. Now this, as I shall fully manifest afterward, is merely from the Holy Ghost himself and his grace, respect being had herein only unto the order of his operations in us, some being preparatory for and dispositive unto others, one being instituted as the means of obtaining another, the whole being the effect of the free gift of God; for we do not make ourselves to differ from others, nor have we anything that we have not received, 1 Corinthians 4:7. Wherefore, the receiving of the Holy Ghost intended in that expression of our Savior, with respect whereunto some are able to receive him, some are not, is not absolute, but with respect unto some certain work and end; and this, as is plain in the context, is the receiving of him as a comforter and a guide in spiritual truth.

    Hereunto faith in Christ Jesus, which also is an effect and fruit of the same Spirit, is antecedently required. In this sense, therefore, believers alone can receive him, and are enabled so to do by the grace which they have received from him in their first conversion unto God. But, (2.) It will be said that we are bound to pray for him before we receive him, and therefore the bestowing of him depends on a condition to be by us fulfilled; for the promise is, that “our heavenly Father will give the Holy Spirit to them that ask him,” Luke 11:13.

    But this doth not prove the bestowing and receiving of him not to be absolutely free. Nay, it proves the contrary. It is gratia indebita, “undeserved grace,” that is the proper object of prayer. And God, by these encouraging promises, doth not abridge the liberty of his own will, nor derogate from the freedom of his gifts and grace, but only directs us into the way whereby we may be made partakers of them, unto his glory and our own advantage. And this also belongs unto the order of the communication of the grace of the Spirit unto us. This very praying for the Spirit is a duty which we cannot perform without his assistance; for “no man can call Jesus Lord, but by the Holy Ghost,” 1 Corinthians 12:3.

    He helps us, as a Spirit of grace and supplication, to pray for him as a Spirit of joy and consolation. 3. This is such a gift as in God proceeds from bounty; for God is said to give him unto us “richly,” Titus 3:6. This will be spoken unto in the fourth way of his communication: only I say at present, the greatness of a gift, the free mind of the giver, and want of desert or merit in the receiver, are that which declare bounty to be the spring and fountain of it; and all these concur to the height in God’s giving of the Holy Ghost.

    Again; On the part of them who receive this gift, privilege and advantage are intimated. They receive a gift, and that from God, and that a great and singular gift, from divine bounty. Some, indeed, receive him in a sort, as to some ends and purposes, without any advantage finally unto their own souls. So do they who “prophesy” and “cast out devils” by his power, in the name of Christ, and yet, continuing “workers of iniquity,” are rejected at the last day, Matthew 7:22,23. Thus it is with all who receive his gifts only, without his grace to sanctify their persons and their gifts; and this whether they be ordinary or extraordinary: but this is only by accident. There is no gift of the Holy Ghost but is good in its own nature, tending to a good end, and is proper for the good and advantage of them by whom it is received. And although the direct end of some of them be not the spiritual good of them on whom they are bestowed, but the edification of others, — for “the manifestation of the Spirit is given unto every man to profit withal,” 1 Corinthians 12:7, — yet there is that excellency and worth in them, and that use may be made of them, as to turn greatly to the advantage of them that receive them; for although they are not grace, yet they serve to stir up and give an edge unto grace, and to draw it out unto exercise, whereby it is strengthened and increased. And they have an influence into glory; for it is by the abilities which they give that some are made wise and effectual instruments for the “turning of many to righteousness,” who “shall shine as the brightness of the firmament, and as the stars for ever and ever,” Daniel 12:3.

    But the unbelief, ingratitude, and lusts of men can spoil these, and any other good things whatever. And these things will afterward in particular fall under our consideration. In general, to be made partaker of the Holy Ghost is an inestimable privilege and advantage, and as such is proposed by our Savior, John 14:17.

    Secondly, God is said to send him: <19A430> Psalm 104:30, “Thou sendest forth thy Spirit;” John 14:26, “The Father will send the Holy Ghost in my name.” This is also spoken of the Son: “I will send unto you the Comforter from the Father,” chapter 15:26, 16:7. And in the accomplishment of that promise, it is said he “shed him forth,” Acts 2:33; Galatians 4:6, “Godhath sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts;” and in other places the same expression is used. Now, this, upon the matter, is the same with the former, of giving him, arguing the same authority, the same freedom, the same bounty. Only, the word naturally includes in its signification a respect unto a local motion. He which is sent removeth from the place where he was, from whence he is sent, unto a place where he was not, whither he was sent. Now, this cannot properly be spoken of the Holy Ghost; for he being God by nature is naturally omnipresent, and an omnipresence is inconsistent with a local mutation.

    So the Psalmist expressly: <19D907> Psalm 139:7,8, “Whither shall I go from thy Spirit? or whither shall I flee from thy presence? If I ascend up into heaven,” etc.

    There must, therefore, a metaphor be allowed in this expression, but such a one as the Scripture, by the frequent use of it, hath rendered familiar unto us. Thus God is said to “come out of his place,” to “bow the heavens and come down;” to “come down and see what is done in the earth,” Isaiah 26:21; <19E405> Psalm 144:5; Genesis 18:21. That these things are not spoken properly of God, who is immense, all men acknowledge. But when God begins to work in any place, in any kind, where before he did not do so, he is said to come thither; for so must we do, — we must come to a place before we can work in it. Thus, the sending of the Holy Ghost includeth two things as added unto his being given: — 1. That he was not before in or with that person, or amongst those persons, for that especial work and end which he is sent for. He may be in them and with them in one respect, and be afterward said to be sent unto them in another. So our Lord Jesus Christ promiseth to send the Holy Ghost unto his disciples as a comforter, whom they had received before as a sanctifier. “I will,” saith he, “send him unto you; and ye know him, for he dwelleth with you,” John 14:17, 16:7.

    He did so as a sanctifier before he came unto them as a comforter. But in every coming of his, he is sent for one especial work or another; and this sufficiently manifests that in his gifts and graces he is not common unto all. A supposition thereof would leave no place for this especial act of sending him, which is done by choice and distinction of the object. Much less is he a light which is always in all men, and which all men may be in if they please; for this neither is nor can be absent in any sense from anyone at any time. 2. It denotes an especial work there or on them, where and on whom there was none before of that kind. For this cause is he said to be sent of the Father. No local motion, then, is intended in this expression, only there is an allusion thereunto; for as a creature cannot produce any effects where it is not, until it either be sent thither or go thither of its own accord, so the Holy Ghost produceth not the blessed effects of his power and grace but in and towards them unto whom he is given and sent by the Father.

    How, in answer hereunto, he is said himself to come, shall be afterward declared. And it is the person of the Spirit which is said to be thus sent; for this belongs unto that holy dispensation of the several persons of the Trinity in the work of our salvation. And herein the Spirit, in all his operations, is considered as sent of the Father, for the reasons before often intimated.

    Thirdly, God is said to minister the Spirit: Galatians 3:5, “He that ministereth to you the Spirit.” O ou=n ejpicorhgi>av tou~ Pneu>matov Ihsou~ Cristou~ — “He that giveth you continual or abundant supplies of the Spirit.” Corhge>w is “to give a sufficiency of any thing;” and corhgi>a and corh>ghma are dimensum , “a sufficiency of provision.” An addition thereunto is ejpicorhgi>a , whereby the communication of the Spirit is expressed: Philippians 1:19,” For I know that this shall turn to my salvation through your prayers,” kai< ejpicorhgi>av tou~ Pneu>matov Ihsou~ Cristou~ , “and the additional supply of the Spirit of Jesus Christ.”

    That Spirit and its assistance he had before received, but he yet stood in need of a daily farther supply. So is the word used constantly for the adding of one thing to another, or one degree of the same thing unto another: 2 Peter 1:5, ‘ Epicorhgh>sate ejn th~ pi>stei uJmw~n thn — “Add to your faith virtue;” or, “In your faith make an increase of virtue.” When, therefore, God is thus said to “minister the Spirit,” it is his continual giving out of additional supplies of his grace by his Spirit which is intended; for the Holy Spirit is a voluntary agent, and distributes unto everyone as he will. When, therefore, he is given and sent unto any, his operations are limited by his own will and the will of him that sends him; and therefore do we stand in need of supplies of him and from him; which are the principal subject-matter of our prayers in this world.

    Fourthly, God is said to put his Spirit in or upon men; and this also belongeth unto the manner of his dispensation: Isaiah 42:1, “Behold my servant, whom I uphold; I have put my Spirit upon him.” The word there, indeed, is yTijæn; , “I have given my Spirit upon him;” but because wyl;[; , “upon him,” is joined to it, it is by ours rendered by “put.” As also Ezekiel 37:14, where µb,b; , in you,” is added; — “Put my Spirit in you.” The same is plainly intended with that, Isaiah 63:11, wOvd]q; jæWrAta, wOBr]qiB] µC;hæ — “That put his Holy Spirit in the midst of them.” Hence, yTijæn; , “I have given,” or “I will give,” Isaiah 42:1, is rendered by qh>sw , Matthew 12:18: Qh>sw to< Pneu~ma> mou ejp aujto>n , — “I will put my Spirit upon him.” The word ˆjæn; , then, used in this sense, doth not denote the granting or donation of anything, but its actual bestowing, as µWc doth. And it is the effectual acting of God in this matter that is intended. He doth not only give and send his Spirit unto them to whom he designs so great a benefit and privilege, but he actually collates and bestows him upon them. He doth not send him unto them, and leave it in their wills and power whether they will receive him or no, but he so effectually collates and puts him in them or upon them as that they shall be actually made partakers of him. He efficaciously endows their hearts and minds with him, for the work and end which he is designed unto. So Exodus 31:6, “I have put wisdom,” is as much as, “I have filled them with wisdom,” verse 2. So, then, where God intendeth unto any the benefit of his Spirit, he will actually and effectually collate him upon them.

    He doth not, indeed, always do this in the same manner. Sometimes he doth it, as it were, by a surprisal, when those who receive him are neither aware of it nor do desire it. So the Spirit of the Lord, as a Spirit of prophecy, came upon Saul, when his mind was remote and estranged from any such thoughts. In like manner, the Spirit of God came upon Eldad and Medad in the camp, when the other elders went forth unto the tabernacle to receive him, Numbers 11:27. And so the Spirit of prophecy came upon most of the prophets of old, without either expectation or preparation on their parts. So Amos giveth an account of his call unto his office, chapter 7:14, 15. “I was,” saith he, “no prophet, neither was I a prophet’s son; but I was an herdman, and a gatherer of sycomore fruit: and the LORD took me as I followed the flock, and the LORD said unto me, Go, prophesy.” He was not brought up with any expectation of receiving this gift, he had no preparation for it; but God surprised him with his call and gift as he followed the flock. Such, also, was the call of Jeremiah, chapter 1:5-7. So vain is the discourse of Maimonides on this subject, prescribing various natural and moral preparations for the receiving of this gift. But these things were extraordinary. Yet I no way doubt but that God doth yet continue to work grace in many by such unexpected surprisals; the manner whereof shall be afterward inquired into. But sometimes, as to some gifts and graces, God doth bestow his Spirit where there is some preparation and cooperation on our part; but wherever he designs to put or place him, he doth it effectually.

    Fifthly, God is said to pour him out, and that frequently: Proverbs 1:23, yjiWr µk,l; h[;yBiaæ hNehi , — “Behold, I will pour out my Spirit unto you.” [bæn; signifies “ebullire more scaturiginis,” — “to bubble up as a fountain.” Hence, the words are rendered by Theodotion, ‘ Anablu>sw uJmi~n Pveu~ma> mou , — “Scaturire faciam,” — “I will cause my Spirit to spring out unto you as a fountain.” And it is frequently applied unto speaking, when it signifies “eloqui aut proferre verba more scaturiginis.”

    See Psalm 78:2, 145:7. And h[;B; , also, which some take to be the root of , h[;yBiaæ , Proverbs 1:23, hath the same signification. And the word hath a double lively metaphor: for the proceeding of the Spirit from the Father is compared to the continual rising of the waters of a living spring; and his communication unto us to the overflowing of those waters, yet guided by the will and wisdom of God: Isaiah 32:15, “Until the Spirit be poured upon us from on high, and the wilderness be a fruitful field,” — Wnyle[; hr,[;yeAr[æ µwOrM; mi jæWr hr;[; , is, indeed, sometimes “to pour out,” but more properly and more commonly “to uncover,” “to make bare,” “to reveal;” — “Until the Spirit be revealed from on high.” There shall be such a plentiful communication of the Spirit as that he and his work shall be made open, revealed, and plain; or, the Spirit shall be bared, as God is said to make his arm bare when he will work mightily and effectually, chapter 52:10. Chapter 44:3, “I will pour my Spirit upon thy seed, and my blessing upon thine offspring.” Qxæy; the word here, is so to pour a thing out as that it cleaveth unto and abideth on that which it is poured out upon; as the Spirit of God abides with them unto whom he is communicated. Ezekiel 39:29, “I have poured out my Spirit upon the house of Israel,” — yTik]pæv; , another word: this is properly to pour out, and that in a plentiful manner, [and is] the same word that is used in that great promise, Joel 2:28, which is rendered, Acts 2:17, by ejkcew~ , “effundam,” — “I will pour out my Spirit;” and the same thing is again expressed by the same word, chapter 10:45, “On the Gentiles also was poured out the gift of the Holy Ghost.”

    Let us, then, briefly consider the importance of this expression. And one or two things may be observed concerning it in general; as, — 1. Wherever it is used, it hath direct respect unto the times of the gospel.

    Either it is a part of the promises concerning it, or of the story of their accomplishment under it. But wherever it is mentioned, the time, state, and grace of the gospel are intended in it: for the Lord Christ was “in all things to have the pre-eminence,” Colossians 1:18; and, therefore, although God gave his Spirit in some measure before, yet he poured him not out until he was first anointed with his fullness. 2. There is a tacit comparison in it with some other time and season, or some other act of God, wherein or whereby God gave his Spirit before, but not in the way and manner that he intended now to bestow him. A larger measure of the Spirit to be now given than was before, or is signified by any other expressions of the same gift, is intended in this word.

    Three things are therefore comprised in this expression: — 1. An eminent act of divine bounty. Pouring forth is the way whereby bounty from an all-sufficing fullness is expressed; as “The clouds, filled with a moist vapor, pour down rain,” Job 36:27, until “it water the ridges of the earth abundantly, settling the furrows thereof, and making it soft with showers,” as Psalm 65:10; which, with the things following in that place, verses 11-13, are spoken allegorically of this pouring out of the Spirit of God from above. Hence, God is said to do this richly: Titus 3:6, “The renewing of the Holy Ghost,” ou= ejxe>ceen ejf hJma~v plousi>wv , “which he hath poured on us richly,” — that is, on all believers who are converted unto God; — for the apostle discourseth not of the extraordinary gifts of the Holy Ghost, which were then given forth in a plentiful manner, but of that grace of the Holy Ghost whereby all that believe are regenerated, renewed, and converted unto God; for so were men converted of old by a rich participation of the Holy Ghost, and so they must be still, whatever some pretend, or die in their sins. And by the same word is the bounty of God in other things expressed: “The living God, who giveth us richly all things to enjoy,” 1 Timothy 6:17. 2. This pouring out hath respect unto the gifts and graces of the Spirit, and not unto his person: for where he is given, he is given absolutely, and as to himself not more or less; but his gifts and graces may be more plentifully and abundantly given at one time than at another, to some persons than to others. Wherefore this expression is metonymical, that being spoken of the cause which is proper to the effect; the Spirit being said to be poured forth, because his graces are so. 3. Respect is had herein unto some especial works of the Spirit. Such are the purifying or sanctifying, and the comforting or refreshing [of] them on whom he is poured. With respect unto the first of these effects, he is compared both unto fire and water; for both fire and water have purifying qualities in them, though towards different objects, and working in a different manner.

    So, by fire are metals purified and purged from their dross and mixtures; and by water are all other unclean and defiled things cleansed and purified.

    Hence, the Lord Jesus Christ, in his work by his Spirit, is at once compared unto a “refiner’s fire” and to “fullers’ soap,” Malachi 3:2,3, because of the purging, purifying qualities that are in fire and water. And the Holy Ghost is expressly called a “Spirit of burning,” Isaiah 4:4; for by him are the vessels of the house of God that are of gold and silver refined and purged, as those that are but of wood and stone are consumed.

    And when it is said of our Lord Jesus that he should “baptize with the Holy Ghost and with fire,” Luke 3:16, it is but e[n dia< duoi~n , the same thing doubly expressed; and, therefore, mention is made only of the “Holy Ghost,” John 1:33. But the Holy Ghost was, in his dispensation, to purify and cleanse them as fire doth gold and silver. And on the same account is he compared to water, Ezekiel 36:25, “I will sprinkle clean water upon you, and ye shall be clean;” which is expounded, verse 26, by “A new spirit will I put within you;” which God calls his Spirit, verse 27.

    So our Savior calls him “rivers of water,” John 7:38,39: see Isaiah 44:3. And it is with regard unto his purifying, cleansing, and sanctifying our natures that he is thus called. With respect, therefore, in an especial manner, hereunto is he said to be poured out. So our apostle expressly declares, Titus 3:4-6. Again, it respects his comforting and refreshing them on whom he is poured. Hence is he said to be poured down from above as rain that descends on the earth: Isaiah 44:3, “I will pour water upon him that is thirsty, and floods upon the dry ground,” — that is, “I will pour my Spirit on thy seed, and my blessing upon thine offspring; and they shall spring up as among the grass, as willows by the water courses,” verse 4; see chapter 35:6, 7. He comes upon the dry, parched, barren ground of the hearts of men, with his refreshing, fructifying virtue and blessing, causing them to spring and bring forth fruits in holiness and righteousness to God, Hebrews 6:7. And in respect unto his communication of his Spirit is the Lord Christ said to “come down like rain upon the mown grass, as showers that water the earth,” Psalm 72:6.

    The good Lord give us always of these waters and refreshing showers!

    And these are the ways, in general, whereby the dispensation of the Spirit from God, for what end or purpose soever it be, is expressed. 2. We come nextly to consider what is ascribed unto the Spirit himself in a way of compliance with these acts of God whereby he is given and administered. Now, these are such things or actions as manifest him to be a voluntary agent, and that not only as to what he acts or doth in men, but also as to the manner of his coming forth from God, and his application of himself unto his work. And these we must consider as they are declared unto us in the Scripture.

    The first and most general expression hereof is, that he proceedeth from the Father; and being the Spirit of the Son, he proceedeth from him also in like manner: John 15:26, “The Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, he shall testify of me.” There is a twofold ejkpo>reusiv or “procession” of the Holy Ghost. The one is fusikh> or uJpostatikh> , “natural” or “personal.” This expresseth his eternal relation to the persons of the Father and the Son. He is of them by an eternal emanation or procession. The manner hereof unto us, in this life, is incomprehensible; therefore it is rejected by some, who will believe no more than they can put their hands into the sides of. And yet are they forced, in things under their eyes, to admit of many things which they cannot perfectly comprehend! But we live by faith, and not by sight. This is enough unto us, that we admit nothing in this great mystery but what is revealed.

    And nothing is revealed unto us that is inconsistent with the being and subsistence of God; for this procession or emanation includes no separation or division in or of the divine nature, but only expresseth a distinction in subsistence, by a property peculiar to the Holy Spirit. But this is not that which at present I intend. The consideration of it belongeth unto the doctrine of the Trinity in general, and hath been handled elsewhere. Secondly, There is an ejkpo>reusiv or “procession” of the Spirit, which is oijkonomikh> or “dispensatory.” This is the egress of the Spirit in his application of himself unto his work. A voluntary act it is of his will, and not a necessary property of his person. And he is said thus to proceed from the Father, because he goeth forth or proceedeth in the pursuit of the counsels and purposes of the Father, and, as sent by him, to put them into execution, or to make them effectual. And in like manner he proceedeth from the Son, sent by him for the application of his grace unto the souls of his elect, John 15:26. It is true, this proves his eternal relation to the Father and the Son, as he proceeds from them, or receives his peculiar personal subsistence from them, for that is the ground of this order of operation; but it is his own personal voluntary acting that is intended in the expression. And this is the general notation of the original of the Spirit’s acting in all that he doth: — He proceedeth or cometh forth from the Father. Had it been only said that he was given and sent, it could not have been known that there was anything of his own will in what he did, whereas he is said to “divide unto every man as he will;” but in that ejkporeu>etai, he proceedeth of his own accord unto his work, his own will and condescension are also asserted. And this his proceeding from the Father is in compliance with his sending of him to accomplish and make effectual the purposes of his will and the counsels of his grace.

    Secondly, To the same purpose he is said to come : John 15:26, “When the Comforter is come.” John 16:7, “If I go not away, the Comforter will not come.” Verse 8, “And when he is come.” So is he said to come upon persons. We so express it, 1 Chronicles 12:18, “The Spirit came upon Amasai,” — ycæm;[\Ata, hv;b]l; jæWrw] . “And the Spirit clothed Amasai,” possessed his mind as a man’s clothes cleave unto him. Acts 19:6, “The Holy Ghost came on them, and they prophesied,” h=lqe.

    Ercomai , “to come,” is, as it were, the terminus ad quem of ejkporeu>omai , “going forth” or “proceeding;” for there is in these expressions an allusion unto a local motion, whereof these two words denote the beginning and the end. The first intendeth his voluntary application of himself to his work, the other his progress in it; such condescensions doth God make use of in the declaration of his divine actings, to accommodate them unto our understandings, and to give us some kind of apprehension of them. He proceedeth from the Father, as given by him; and cometh unto us, as sent by him. The meaning of both is, that the Holy Ghost, by his own will and consent, worketh, in the pursuit of the will of the Father, there and that, where and what, he did not work before. And as there is no local motion to be thought of in these things, so they can in no tolerable sense be reconciled to the imagination of his being only the inherent virtue or an actual emanation and influence of the power of God. And hereby are our faith and obedience regulated in our dealing with God about him: for we may both pray the Father that he would give and send him unto us, according to his promise; and we may pray to him to come unto us to sanctify and comfort us, according to the work and office that he hath uudertaken. This is that which we are taught hereby; for these revelations of God are for our instruction in the obedience of faith.

    Thirdly, He is said to fall on men: Acts 10:44, “While Peter yet spake these words, the Holy Ghost fell on all them which heard the word.” So chap. 11:15, where Peter, repeating the same matter, says, “The Holy Ghost fell on them, as on us at the beginning,” — that is, Acts 2:4. A greatness and suddenness in a surprisal is intended in this word; as, when the fire fell down from heaven (which was a type of him) upon the altar and sacrifice of Elijah, the people that saw it were amazed, and falling on their faces, cried out, “The LORD he is the God!” 1 Kings 18:38,39.

    When men are no way in expectation of such a gift, or when they have an expectation in general, but are suddenly surprised as to the particular season, it is thus declared. But wherever this word is used, some extraordinary effects evidencing his presence and power do immediately ensue, Acts 10:44-46; and so it was at the beginning of his effusion under the New Testament, chapter 2:4, 8:16.

    Fourthly, Being come, he is said to rest on the persons to whom he is given and sent: Isaiah 11:2, “And the Spirit of the LORD shall rest upon him.” This is interpreted by “abiding” and “remaining,” John 1:32,33. Numbers 11:25,26, “The Spirit of the LORD rested upon the elders.” So the “spirit of Elijah rested on Elisha,” 2 Kings 2:15. Peter 4:14, “The Spirit of glory and of God resteth on you.” Two things are included herein: — 1. Complacency; 2. Permanency.

    First, He is well pleased in his work wherein he rests. So where God is said to “rest in his love,” he doth it with “joy” and “singing,” Zephaniah 3:17. So doth the Spirit rejoice where he rests. Secondly, He abides where he rests. Under this notion is this acting of the Spirit promised by our Savior: “He shall abide with you for ever,” John 14:16. He came only on some men by a sudden surprisal, to act in them and by them some peculiar work and duty; to this end he only transiently affected their minds with his power; — but where he is said to rest, as in the works of sanctification and consolation, there he abides and continues with complacency and delight.

    Fifthly, He is said to depart from some persons. So it is said of Saul, Samuel 16:14, “The Spirit of the LORD departed from him.” And David prays that God would not “take his Holy Spirit from him,” Psalm 51:11. And this is to be understood answerably unto what we have discoursed before about his coming and his being sent. As he is said to come, so is he said to depart; and as he is said to be sent, so is he said to be taken away. His departure from men, therefore, is his ceasing to work in them and on them as formerly; and as far as this is penal, he is said to be taken away. So he departed and was taken away from Saul, when he no more helped him with that ability for kingly government which before he had by his assistance. And this departure of the Holy Ghost from any is either total or partial only. Some on whom he hath been bestowed, for the working of sundry gifts for the good of others, with manifold convictions, by light and general assistance unto the performance of duties, he utterly deserts, and gives them up unto themselves and their own hearts’ lusts.

    Examples hereof are common in the world. Men who have been made partakers of many “gifts of the Holy Ghost,” and been in an especial manner enlightened, and, under the power of their convictions, carried out unto the profession of the gospel and the performance of many duties of religion, yet, being entangled by temptations, and overcome by the power of their lusts, relinquish all their beginnings and engagements, and turn wholly unto sin and folly. From such persons the Holy Ghost utterly departs, all their gifts dry up and wither, their light goeth out, and they have darkness instead of a vision. The case of such is deplorable; for “it had been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than, after they have known it, to turn from the holy commandment delivered unto them,” 2 Peter 2:21. And some of these add despite and contempt of that whole work of the Spirit of God, whereof themselves were made partakers, unto their apostasy. And the condition of such profligate sinners is, for the most part, irrecoverable, Hebrews 6:4-6, 10:26-30. From some he withdraweth and departeth partially only, and that mostly but for a season; and this departure respects the grace, light, and consolation which he administers unto believers, as to the degrees of them, and the sense of them in their own souls. On whom he is bestowed to work these things in a saving way, from them he never utterly or totally departs. This our blessed Savior plainly promiseth and asserteth: John 4:14, “Whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life.”

    That this well of “living water” is his sanctifying Spirit himself declares, chap. 7:37-39. He who hath received him shall never have a thirst of total want and indigence anymore. Besides, he is given unto this end by virtue of the covenant of grace; and the promise is express therein that he shall “never depart from them” to whom he is given, Isaiah 59:21; Jeremiah 31:33, 32:39, 40; Ezekiel 11:19,20. But now, as to the degrees and sensible effects of these operations, he may depart and withdraw from believers for a season. Hence they may be left unto many spiritual decays and much weakness, the things of grace that remain in them being as it were “ready to die,” Revelation 3:2; and they may apprehend themselves deserted and forsaken of God, — so did Zion, Isaiah 40:27, 49:14: for therein doth God “hide himself,” or “forsake his people for a small moment,” chapter 54:7, 8. He “hideth himself, and is wroth,” chapter 57:17. These are the things which David so often and so bitterly complaineth of, and which with so much earnestness he contendeth and wrestleth with God to be delivered from. These are those spiritual desertions which some of late have laden with reproach, contempt, and scorn. All the apprehensions and complaints of the people of God about them, they would represent as nothing but the idle imaginations of distempered brains, or the effects of some disorder in their blood and animal spirits. I could, indeed, easily allow that men should despise and laugh at what is declared as the experience of professors at present, — their prejudice against their persons will not allow them to entertain any thoughts of them but what are suited unto folly and hypocrisy; — but at this I acknowledge I stand amazed, that whereas these things are so plainly, so fully, and frequently declared in the Scriptures, both as to the actings of God and his Holy Spirit in them, and as to the sense of those concerned about them; whereas the whole of God’s dealings, and believers’ application of themselves to him in this matter, are so graphically exemplified in sundry of the holy saints of old, as Job, David, Heman, and others; and great and plentiful provision is made in the Scripture for the direction, recovery, healing, and consolation of souls in such a condition; yet men professing themselves to be Christians, and to believe the word of God at least not to be a fable, should dare to cast such opprobrious reproaches on the ways and works of God.

    The end of these attempts can be no other but to decry all real intercourse between God and the souls of men, leaving only an outside form or shape of religion, not one jot better than atheism.

    Neither is it only what concerns spiritual desertions, whose nature, causes, and remedies, are professedly and at large handled by all the casuistical divines, even of the Roman church, but the whole work of the Spirit of God upon the hearts of men, with all the effects produced in them with respect unto sin and grace, that some men, by their odious and scurrilous expressions, endeavor to expose to contempt and scorn, S. P., pp. 339- 342. Whatever trouble befalls the minds of men upon the account of a sense of the guilt of sin; whatever darkness and disconsolation they may undergo through the displeasure of God, and his withdrawing of the wonted influences of his grace, love, and favor towards them; whatever peace, comfort, or joy, they may be made partakers of, by a sense of the love of God shed abroad in their hearts by the Holy Ghost, — it is all ascribed, in most opprobrious language, unto melancholy reeks and vapors, whereof a certain and mechanical account may be given by them who understand the anatomy of the brain. To such a height of profane atheism is the daring pride and ignorance of some in our days arrived!

    There remaineth yet one general adjunct of the dispensation and work of the Holy Ghost, which gives a farther description of the manner of it, which I have left unto a single consideration. This is that which is mentioned, Hebrews 2:4, “God bearing them witness, both with signs and wonders, and with divers miracles,” merismoi~v , “and gifts,” say we, “of the Holy Ghost.” But merismoi> are “distributions” or “partitions;” and hence advantage is taken by some to argue against his very being. So Crellius contends that the Holy Ghost here is taken passively, or that the expression Pneu>matov . Wherefore, he supposes that it followeth that the Holy Ghost himself may be divided into parts, so that one may have one part and parcel of him, and another may have another part. How inconsistent this is with the truth of his being and personality is apparent.

    But yet neither can he give any tolerable account of the division and partition of that power of God which he calls the “Holy Ghost,” unless he will make the Holy Spirit to be a quality in us and not in the divine nature, as Justin Martyr affirms Plato to have done, and so to be divided. And the interpretation he useth of the words is wrested, perverse, and foolish; for the contexture of them requires that the Holy Ghost be here taken actively, as the author of the distribution mentioned. He gives out of his gifts and powers unto men in many parts, not all to one, not all at once, not all in one way; but some to one, some to another, some at one time, some at another, and that in great variety. The apostle, therefore, in this place declares that the Holy Spirit gave out various gifts unto the first preachers of the gospel, for the confirmation of their doctrine, according to the promise of our Savior, John 15:26,27. Of these he mentions in particular, first, Shmei~a , “signs;” that is, miraculous works, wrought to signify the presence of God by his power with them that wrought them, so giving out his approbation of the doctrine which they taught. Secondly, Te>rata , “prodigies” or “wonders,” works beyond the power of nature or energy of natural causes, wrought to fill men with wonder and admiration, manifesting to< qei~on , and surprising men with a sense of the presence of God. Thirdly, Duna>meiv , “mighty works” of several sorts, such as opening of the eyes of the blind, raising the dead, and the like. These being mentioned, there is added in general merismoi< Pneu>matov Agi>ou , that is, vwOdQ;jæ jæWrh; twOnT]mæ , “gifts of the Holy Ghost;” for these and other like things did the Holy Ghost work and effect to the end mentioned. And these distributions are from him as the signs and wonders were, — that is, effects of his power: only there is added an intimation how they are all wrought by him; which is, by giving them a power for their operation, variously dividing them amongst those on whom they were bestowed, and that, as it is added, kata< thlhsin , “according unto his own will.” And this place is so directly and fully expounded, 1 Corinthians 12:7-11, that there is no room of exception left unto the most obstinate; and that place having been opened before, in the entrance of this discourse, I shall not here call it over again. These merismoi> , therefore, are his gifts; which, as parts and parcels of his work, he giveth out in great variety. f52 To the same purpose are his operations described, Isaiah 11:2,3, “The Spirit of the LORD shall rest upon him, the Spirit of wisdom and understanding, the Spirit of counsel and might, the Spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the LORD.” He is first called “The Spirit of the LORD,” to express his being and nature; and then he is termed “The Spirit of wisdom and of counsel,” etc., — that is, he who is the author of wisdom and counsel, and the rest of the graces mentioned, who divides and distributes them according to his own will. That variety of gifts and graces wherewith believers are endowed and adorned are these merismoi> , or “distributions,” of the Holy Spirit. Hence, the principal respect that we have unto him immediately, in our worship of him under the New Testament, is as he is the author of these various gifts and graces. So John, saluting the churches of Asia, prayeth for grace for them from God the Father, and from “the seven Spirits which are before his throne,” Revelation 1:4; that is, from the Holy Spirit of God considered in his care of the church and his yielding supplies unto it, as the author of that perfection of gifts and graces which are, and are to be, bestowed upon it. So doth the number of “seven” denote. And, therefore, whereas our Lord Jesus Christ, as the foundation of his church, was anointed with all the gifts and graces of the Spirit in their perfection, it is said that upon that one stone should be “seven eyes,” Zechariah 3:9, — all the gifts of the seven Spirits of God, or of that Holy Spirit which is the author of them all.

    All, therefore, that is pleaded for the division of the Holy Ghost from this place is built on the supposition that we have before rejected, — namely, that he is not a divine person, but an arbitrary emanation of divine power.

    And yet neither so can the division of the Holy Ghost pleaded for be with any tolerable sense maintained. Crellius says, indeed, “That all divine inspirations may be considered as one whole, as many waters make up one sea. In this respect the Holy Ghost is one, — that is, one universal made up of many species;” This is totum logicum. And so he may be divided into his subordinate species! But what ground or color is there for any such notions in the Scripture? Where is it said that all the gifts of the Holy Ghost do constitute or make up one Holy Ghost? or the Holy Ghost is one in general, because many effects are ascribed unto him? or that the several gifts of the Spirit are so many distinct kinds of it? The contrary unto all these is expressly taught, — namely, that the one Holy Spirit worketh all these things as he pleaseth; so that they are all of them external acts of his will and power. And it is to as little purpose pleaded by the same author, “That he is divided as a natural whole into its parts, because there is mention of a measure and portion of him: so God is said not to give him to Jesus Christ ‘by measure,’ John 3:34; and to every one of us is given grace ‘according to the measure of the gift of Christ,’ Ephesians 4:7;” — as though one measure of him were granted unto one, and another measure to another! But this “measure” is plainly of his gifts and graces.

    These were bestowed on the Lord Christ in all their fullness, without any limitation, either as to kinds or degrees; they were poured into him according unto the utmost extent and capacity of human nature, and that under an inconceivable advancement by its union unto the Son of God.

    Others receive his gifts and graces in a limited proportion, both as to their kinds and degrees. To turn this into a division of the Spirit himself is the greatest madness. And casting aside prejudices, there is no difficulty in the understanding of that saying of God to Moses, Numbers 11:17, “I will take of the Spirit which is upon thee, and I will put it upon the elders;” for it is evidently of the gifts of the Spirit, enabling men for rule and government, that God speaketh, and not of the Spirit himself. Without any diminution of that Spirit in him, — that is, of the gifts that he had received, — God gave unto them, as lighting their candle by his. And so, also, the “double portion of the spirit of Elijah,” which Elisha requested for himself, was only a large and peculiar measure of prophetical light, above what other prophets which he left behind him had received, Kings 2:9. He asked µyinæv]Aypi , “os duorum” or “duplex;” to< diplou~n me>rov . Or ta< dipla~ This expression is first used, Deuteronomy 21:17, where the double portion of the first-born is intended; so that probably it was such a portion among the other prophets as the first-born had among the brethren of the same family which he desired: and so it came to pass; whence, also, he had the rule and government of them.


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