1689 London Baptist Confession
1. God the good Creator of all things, in his
infinite power and wisdom doth uphold, direct, dispose, and govern all creatures and
things, from the greatest even to the least, by his most wise and holy providence, to the
end for the which they were created, according unto his infallible foreknowledge, and the
free and immutable counsel of his own will; to the praise of the glory of his wisdom,
power, justice, infinite goodness, and mercy.
( Hebrews 1:3; Job 38:11; Isaiah 46:10, 11; Psalms 135:6; Matthew 10:29-31; Ephesians 1:11 )
2. Although in relation to the foreknowledge and
decree of God, the first cause, all things come to pass immutably and infallibly; so that
there is not anything befalls any by chance, or without his providence; yet by the same
providence he ordereth them to fall out according to the nature of second causes, either
necessarily, freely, or contingently.
( Acts 2:23; Proverbs 16:33; Genesis 8:22 )
3. God, in his ordinary providence maketh use of
means, yet is free to work without, above, and against them at his pleasure.
( Acts 27:31, 44; Isaiah 55:10, 11; Hosea 1:7; Romans 4:19-21; Daniel 3:27 )
4. The almighty power, unsearchable wisdom, and
infinite goodness of God, so far manifest themselves in his providence, that his
determinate counsel extendeth itself even to the first fall, and all other sinful actions
both of angels and men; and that not by a bare permission, which also he most wisely and
powerfully boundeth, and otherwise ordereth and governeth, in a manifold dispensation to
his most holy ends; yet so, as the sinfulness of their acts proceedeth only from the
creatures, and not from God, who, being most holy and righteous, neither is nor can be the
author or approver of sin.
( Romans 11:32-34; 2 Samuel 24:1, 1 Chronicles 21:1; 2 Kings 19:28; Psalms 76;10; Genesis 1:20; Isaiah 10:6, 7, 12; Psalms 1:21; 1 John 2:16 )
5. The most wise, righteous, and gracious God doth
oftentimes leave for a season his own children to manifold temptations and the corruptions
of their own hearts, to chastise them for their former sins, or to discover unto them the
hidden strength of corruption and deceitfulness of their hearts, that they may be humbled;
and to raise them to a more close and constant dependence for their support upon himself;
and to make them more watchful against all future occasions of sin, and for other just and
holy ends. So that whatsoever befalls any of his elect is by his appointment, for his
glory, and their good.
( 2 Chronicles 32:25, 26, 31; 2 Corinthians 12:7-9; Romans 8:28 )
6. As for those wicked and ungodly men whom God, as
the righteous judge, for former sin doth blind and harden; from them he not only
withholdeth his grace, whereby they might have been enlightened in their understanding,
and wrought upon their hearts; but sometimes also withdraweth the gifts which they had,
and exposeth them to such objects as their corruption makes occasion of sin; and withal,
gives them over to their own lusts, the temptations of the world, and the power of Satan,
whereby it comes to pass that they harden themselves, under those means which God useth
for the softening of others.
( Romans 1:24-26, 28; Romans 11:7, 8; Deuteronomy 29:4; Matthew 13:12; Deuteronomy 2:30; 2 Kings 8:12, 13; Psalms 81:11, 12; 2 Thessalonians 2:10-12; Exodus 8:15, 32; Isaiah 6:9, 10; 1 Peter 2:7, 8 )
7. As the providence of God doth in general reach to
all creatures, so after a more special manner it taketh care of his church, and disposeth
of all things to the good thereof.
( 1 Timothy 4:10; Amos 9:8, 9; Isaiah 43:3-5 )
For further study:
"Baptist Roots in America: The Historical Background of Reformed Baptists in America", Samuel E. Waldron, Simpson Publishing Co. (1991)
"A Modern Exposition of the 1689 Baptist Confession of Faith", Samuel E. Waldron, Evangelical Press, 1989
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