by John Arrowsmith
Updated to modern English
Or, A well-organized collection of Sayings and Discussions, Wherein The primary aspects of Christian Religion are affirmed and enhanced.
ECCLESIASTES 12. 9, 10, 11. Because the Preacher was wise, he continued to teach the people Knowledge. Yes; he gave careful attention and sought out and arranged many Proverbs.
The Preacher sought to find acceptable words, and what was written was upright, even words of Truth.
The words of the Wise are like goads and like nails firmly fixed by the Masters of the Assemblies, and given by one Shepherd.
It is the Apostle Paul's declaration to the Corinthians regarding himself that he, as a wise master builder, has laid the Foundation. By this, he intends to convey the following: The task of laying the Foundation is the work of a skilled builder, and it requires both knowledge and wisdom to do it correctly.
This has been the particular concern of the esteemed and learned author of the following discourses. Recognizing the deficiency and necessity of a solid and well-founded understanding of the fundamentals of Christ's Doctrine, he diligently applied himself to this endeavor in the treatise he has left to the world. The author had compiled these sermons (up to the point of their delivery) into a comprehensive body of divinity consisting of thirty distinct aphorisms with their respective discussions. They represent the essence and culmination of his previous efforts throughout his ministry.
Table of Contents
To the Reader
APHORISM I. Human blessedness does not consist in an abundance of worldly comforts, which are all meaningless; but in experiencing God in Christ
-- EXERCITATION 1. Psalm 144, concluding verses explained
-- EXERCITATION 2: A commentary on Psalm 36:8.
-- EXERCITATION 3. Two conclusions from Psalm 73. 25, 26.
-- EXCERCITATION 4. The first conclusion based on Isaiah 55:1-2
APHORISM II. We are led to the experience of God in Christ through the Christian Religion, as revealed in the divine Scriptures.
-- EXERCITATION 1: The guidance and safe passage of the Saints
-- EXERCITATION 2: The inadequacy of other religions
-- EXERCITATION 3: Vocal oracles of God, or written. Books of Scripture
-- EXERCITATION 4: How Scripture Oracles far surpass those of the pagans in terms of clarity, piety, truthfulness, endurance, and authority.
APHORISM III: Scripture-Oracles, assuming that the existence of God is sufficiently clear through the light of Nature, provide further revelation about His essence, existence, and attributes.
--EXERCITATION 1: 1 Corinthians 15:34 explained.
-- EXERCITATION 2: The existence of God, the primary insight of natural light
-- EXERCITATION 3: There are three ways in which reason falls short of fully revealing what God is.
-- EXERCITATION 4: Divine Attributes demanding utmost reverence.
APHORISM IV: Goodness and Greatness are attributes so comprehensive as to encompass a multitude of divine perfections.
-- EXERCITATION 1: God described through goodness and greatness both within and outside the Church.
-- EXERCITATION 2: The Nature of Grace.
-- EXERCITATION 3: The Generosity of God
-- EXERCITATION 4: Keeping mercy for thousands explained.
-- EXERCITATION 5: The latter clauses of Exod. 34:7, translated and explained to encompass an eighth aspect of divine goodness
-- EXERCITATION 6: Job 11:7-9 explained in terms of divine Greatness.
-- EXERCITATION 7: The depth of divine omniscience is revealed in discerning the profound things of mankind, even of Satan, and even of God.
-- EXERCITATION 8. Divine Immensity illustrated by the expanse of the Sea.
APHORISM V: The goodness and greatness of God are abundantly demonstrated through His decrees of Election and Preterition, as well as His works of Creation and Providence.
-- EXERCITATION 1: The discussion of predestination in this context is necessary.
-- EXERCITATION 2: Preterition Described
-- EXERCITATION 3: An Introduction to Romans 9
-- EXERCITATION 4: Creation - What it means.
-- EXERCITATION 5: The same and other attributes of God declared from his providential dispensations
APHORISM VI: Providence extends itself not only to all created beings, but also to all human affairs, especially those concerning the Church, and even to the sins of angels and men.
-- EXERCITATION 1: Providence over all created beings.
-- EXERCITATION 2: Deuteronomy 11:12 opened.
-- EXERCITATION 3. Hard-heartedness is composed of being unteachable in the understanding
-- EXERCITATION 4. Objections against and Corollaries from the previous propositions.