Author: The Westminster Assembly
In 1643, during the English Civil War under Charles I, the English Parliament called together a group of 121 Puritan clergymen. The group, which met at Westminster Abbey over the next several years, sought to provide counsel to the Church of England on issues of worship, doctrine, government, and discipline. Their meetings produced The Westminster Confession of Faith, a Larger Catechism and a Shorter Catechism, the Directory of Public Worship, and the Form of Church Government. The Westminster Larger and Shorter Catechisms, written in simple question and answer format, are designed to educate lay Christians in matters of basic doctrine. The Westminster Confession is arguably the most influential Reformed confession ever written and is used by Reformed churches around the world.
Question 1. What is the chief and highest end of man?
Answer. Man’s chief and highest end is to glorify God (Rom 11:36 1 Cor 6:20 †; 10:31; Ps 86:9 , 12†), and fully to enjoy him for ever (Ps 73:24-28 John 17:21-23 Ps 16:5-11 †; Rev 21:3-4 †).
Q. 2. How doth it appear that there is God?
A. The very light of nature in man, and the works of God, declare plainly that there is a God (Rom 1:19-20 Ps 19:1-3 Acts 17:28 ); but his word and Spirit only do sufficiently and effectually reveal him unto men for their salvation (1 Cor 2:9-10 1:20-21 †; 2 Tim 3:15-17 Isa 49:21 ).
Q. 3. What is the word of God?
A. The holy scriptures of the Old and New Testament are the word of God (2 Tim 3:16 2 Pet 1:19-21 3:2 2 Pet 1:15-16 †; Matt 19:4-5 †; with (Gen 2:24 †), the only rule of faith and obedience (Deut 4:2 †; Eph 2:20 Rev 22:18-19 Isa 8:20 Luke 16:29-31 Gal 1:8-9 2 Tim 3:15-17 ).
Q. 4. How doth it appear that the scriptures are the word of God?
A. The scriptures manifest themselves to be the word of God, by their majesty (Isa 66:1 †; Hos 8:12 Amos 9:2-4 †; 1 Cor 2:6-7 13 Ps 119:18 Ps 119:129 ) and purity (Ps 12:6 Ps 119:140 ); by the consent of all the parts (Luke 24:27 †; Acts 10:43 26:22), and the scope of the whole, which is to give all glory to God (Rom 3:19 , 27; 16:25-27†; 2 Cor 3:6-11 †); by their light and power to convince and convert sinners, to comfort and build up believers unto salvation (Acts 18:28 Heb 4:12 Jas 1:18 Ps 19:7-9 Rom 15:4 Acts 20:32 ): but the Spirit of God bearing witness by and with the scriptures in the heart of man, is alone able fully to persuade it that they are the very word of God (John 16:13-14 1 Jhn 2:20 , 27; John 20:31 ).
Q. 5. What do the scriptures principally teach?
A. The scriptures principally teach what man is to believe concerning God (Gen 1:1 †; Exod 34:5-7 †; Ps 48:1 †; John 20:31 †; 2 Tim 3:15 †), and what duty God requires of man (Deut 10:12-13 †; Ps 119:105 †; 2 Tim 1:13 3:15-17 †; Acts 16:30-31 †).
What Man Ought to Believe Concerning God.
Q. 6. What do the scriptures make known of God?
A. The scriptures make known what God is (John 4:24 †; Exod 3:14 †; 34:6–7†; Isa 40:18 , 21-23, 25, 28†; Heb 11:6 ), the persons in the Godhead (Matt 3:16-17 †; Deut 6:4-6 †; 1 Cor 8:4 , 6†; Matt 28:19-20 †; 2 Cor 13:14 †; 1 Jhn 5:7 [TR]), his decrees (Acts 15:14-18 [TR]; Isa 46:9-10 †), and the execution of his decrees (Acts 4:27-28 ).
Q. 7. What is God?
A. God is a Spirit (John 4:24 ), in and of himself infinite in being (Exod 3:14 Jb 11:7-9 Ps 145:3 †; Ps 147:5 †), glory (Acts 7:2 ), blessedness (1 Tim 6:15 ), and perfection (Matt 5:48 ); all-sufficient (Exod 3:14 †; Gen 17:1 Rom 11:35-36 †), eternal (Ps 90:2 Deut 33:27 †), unchangeable (Mal 3:6 Jas 1:17 ), incomprehensible (1 Kgs 8:27 Ps 145:3 †; Rom 11:34 †), every where present (Ps 139:1-13 ), almighty (Rev 4:8 Gen 17:1 †; Matt 19:26 †), knowing all things (Heb 4:13 Ps 147:5 ), most wise (Rom 11:33-34 †; Rom 14:26 ), most holy (1 Pet 1:15-16 †; Isa 6:3 Rev 15:4 ), most just (Deut 32:4 Rom 3:5 , Rom 3:26 †), most merciful and gracious, long-suffering, and abundant in goodness and truth (Exod 34:6 Ps 117:2 †; Deut 32:4 †).
Q. 9. How many persons are there in the Godhead?
A. There be three persons in the Godhead, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost; and these three are one true, eternal God, the same in substance, equal in power and glory; although distinguished by their personal properties (1 Jhn 5:7 [TR]; Matt 3:16-17 28:19; 2 Cor 13:14 John 10:30 ).
Q. 10. What are the personal properties of the three persons in the Godhead?
A. It is proper to the Father to beget the Son (Heb 1:5-8 John 1:14 †), and to the Son to be begotten of the Father (John 1:14-18 ), and to the Holy Ghost to proceed from the Father and the Son from all eternity (John 15:26 Gal 4:6 ).
Q. 11. How doth it appear that the Son and the Holy Ghost are God equal with the Father?
A. The scriptures manifest that the Son and the Holy Ghost are God equal with the Father, ascribing unto them such names (Isa 6:3-8 with John 12:41 with Acts 28:25 Jer 23:6 †; 1 Jhn 5:20 Ps 45:6 †; Acts 5:3-4 ), attributes (John 1:1 Isa 9:6 John 2:24-25 1 Cor 2:10-11 Heb 9:14 †), works (Col 1:16 Gen 1:2 Jb 26:13 †; John 1:3 †), and worship (Matt 28:19 2 Cor 13:14 ), as are proper to God only.
Q. 12. What are the decrees of God?
A. God’s decrees are the wise, free, and holy acts of the counsel of his will (Isa 45:6-7 †; Eph 1:11 Rom 11:33 Rom 9:14-18 ), whereby, from all eternity, he hath, for his own glory, unchangeably foreordained whatsoever comes to pass in time (Isa 14:24 †; Acts 2:23 †; Acts 4:27-28 †; Eph 1:4 Eph 1:11 Rom 9:22-23 Ps 33:11 ), especially concerning angels and men.
Q. 13. What hath God especially decreed concerning angels and men?
A. God, by an eternal and immutable decree, out of his mere love, for the praise of his glorious grace, to be manifested in due time, hath elected some angels to glory (1 Tim 5:21 ); and in Christ hath chosen some men to eternal life, and the means thereof (Eph 1:4-6 2:10†; 2 Thess 2:13-14 1 Pet 1:2 †): and also, according to his sovereign power, and the unsearchable counsel of his own will, (whereby he extendeth or withholdeth favor as he pleaseth,) hath passed by and foreordained the rest to dishonour and wrath, to be for their sin inflicted, to the praise of the glory of his justice (Rom 9:17-18 Rom 9:21-22 Matt 11:25-26 2 Tim 2:20 Jud 1:4 1 Pet 2:8 ).
Q. 14. How doth God execute his decrees?
A. God executeth his decrees in the works of creation and providence (Rev 4:11 †; Isa 40:12-31 †), according to his infallible foreknowledge, and the free and immutable counsel of his own will (Eph 1:11 Ps 148:8 †; Dan 4:35 †; Acts 4:24-28 †).
Q. 15. What is the work of creation?
A. The work of creation is that wherein God did in the beginning, by the word of his power, make of nothing the world, and all things therein, for himself, within the space of six days, and all very good (Gen 1 Heb 11:3 Prov 16:4 Rom 11:36 †; Rev 4:11 †).
Q. 16. How did God create angels?
A. God created all the angels (Col 1:16 ) spirits (Ps 104:4 ), immortal (Matt 22:30 Luke 20:36 †), holy (Matt 25:31 [TR]), excelling in knowledge (2 Sam 14:17 Matt 24:36 ), mighty in power (2 Thess 1:7 ), to execute his commandments, and to praise his name (Ps 91:11-12 †; 103:20–21), yet subject to change (2 Pet 2:4 ).
Q. 17. How did God create man?
A. After God had made all other creatures, he created man male and female (Gen 1:27 Matt 19:4 †); formed the body of the man of the dust of the ground (Gen 2:7 ), and the woman of the rib of the man (Gen 2:22 ), endued them with living, reasonable, and immortal souls (Gen 2:7 Jb 35:11 Eccl 12:7 Matt 10:28 Luke 23:43 ); made them after his own image (Gen 1:27 ), in knowledge (Col 3:10 ), righteousness, and holiness (Eph 4:24 ); having the law of God written in their hearts (Rom 2:14-15 ), and power to fulfil it (Eccl 7:29 ), and dominion over the creatures (Gen 1:28 Ps 8:6-8 †); yet subject to fall (Gen 2:16-17 †; 3:6; Eccl 7:29 ).
Q. 18. What are God’s works of providence?
A. God’s works of providence are his most holy (Ps 145:17 Lev 21:8 †), wise (Ps 104:24 Isa 28:29 ), and powerful preserving (Heb 1:3 Ps 36:6 †; Neh 9:6 †) and governing (Ps 103:19 Jb 38-41 †; Ps 145:14-16 †) all his creatures; ordering them, and all their actions (Matt 10:29-31 Gen 45:7 Ps 135:6 †), to his own glory (Rom 11:36 Isa 63:14 ).
Q. 19. What is God’s providence towards the angels?
A. God by his providence permitted some of the angels, wilfully and irrecoverably, to fall into sin and damnation (Jud 1:6 2 Pet 2:4 Heb 2:16 John 8:44 ), limiting and ordering that, and all their sins, to his own glory (Jb 1:12 Matt 8:31 Luke 10:17 †); and established the rest in holiness and happiness (1 Tim 5:21 Mark 8:38 Heb 12:22 ); employing them all (Ps 103:20 †; 104:4), at his pleasure, in the administrations of his power, mercy, and justice (2 Kgs 19:35 Heb 1:14 ).
Q. 20. What was the providence of God toward man in the estate in which he was created?
A. The providence of God toward man in the estate in which he was created, was the placing him in paradise, appointing him to dress it, giving him liberty to eat of the fruit of the earth (Gen 2:8 , 15-16); putting the creatures under his dominion (Gen 1:28 ), and ordaining marriage for his help (Gen 2:18 Matt 19:3-9 †; Eph 5:31 †); affording him communion with himself (Gen 1:26-29 3:8); instituting the Sabbath (Gen 2:3 Exod 20:11 †); entering into a covenant of life with him, upon condition of personal, perfect, and perpetual obedience (Gen 2:16-17 †; Rom 5:14 †; Gal 3:12 Rom 10:5 Gal 3:10 †; 1 Cor 15:22 , 47†; Hos 6:7 †), of which the tree of life was a pledge (Gen 2:9 3:22-24†); and forbidding to eat of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, upon the pain of death (Gen 2:17 Jas 2:10 †).
Q. 21. Did man continue in that estate wherein God at first created him?
A. Our first parents being left to the freedom of their own will, through the temptation of Satan, transgressed the commandment of God in eating the forbidden fruit; and thereby fell from the estate of innocency wherein they were created (Gen 3:6-8 , 13; Eccl 7:29 2 Cor 11:3 ).
Q. 22. Did all mankind fall in that first transgression?
A. The covenant being made with Adam as a publick person, not for himself only, but for his posterity, all mankind descending from him by ordinary generation (Acts 17:26 Rom 3:23 †), sinned in him, and fell with him in that first transgression (Gen 2:16-17 Jas 2:10 †; Rom 5:12-20 1 Cor 15:21-22 ).
Q. 24. What is sin?
A. Sin is any want of conformity unto, or transgression of, any law of God, given as a rule to the reasonable creature (Lev 5:17 †; Rom 3:23 †; Jas 4:17 †; 1 Jhn 3:4 Gal 3:10 , 12).
Q. 25. Wherein consisteth the sinfulness of that estate whereinto man fell?
A. The sinfulness of that estate whereinto man fell, consisteth in the guilt of Adam’s first sin (Rom 5:12 , 19; 1 Cor 15:22 †), the want of that righteousness wherein he was created, and the corruption of his nature, whereby he is utterly indisposed, disabled, and made opposite unto all that is spiritually good, and wholly inclined to all evil, and that continually (Rom 3:10-20 Eph 2:1-3 Rom 5:6 8:7-8; Gen 6:5 Col 3:10 †; Eph 4:24 †); which is commonly called Original Sin, and from which do proceed all actual transgressions (Jas 1:14-15 Ps 53:1-3 †; Matt 15:19 Rom 3:10-18 , 23†; Gal 5:19-21 †).
Q. 26. How is original sin conveyed from our first parents unto their posterity?
A. Original sin is conveyed from our first parents unto their posterity by natural generation, so as all that proceed from them in that way are conceived and born in sin (Ps 51:5 Jb 14:4 15:14; John 3:6 ).
Q. 27. What misery did the fall bring upon mankind?
A. The fall brought upon mankind the loss of communion with God (Gen 3:8 , 10, 24; John 8:34 , 42, 44†; Eph 2:12 †), his displeasure and curse (Gen 3:16-19 †; Jb 5:7 †; Eccl 2:22-23 †; Rom 8:18-23 †); so as we are by nature children of wrath (Eph 2:2-3 John 3:36 †; Rom 1:18 †; Eph 5:6 †), bond slaves to Satan (2 Tim 2:26 Luke 11:21-22 †; Heb 2:14 †), and justly liable to all punishments in this world, and that which is to come (Gen 2:17 Lam 3:39 Rom 5:14 †; 6:23; Matt 25:41 , 46; Jud 1:7 ).
Q. 28. What are the punishments of sin in this world?
A. The punishments of sin in this world are either inward, as blindness of mind (Eph 4:18 ), a reprobate sense (Rom 1:28 ), strong delusions (2 Thess 2:11 ), hardness of heart (Rom 2:5 ), horror of conscience (Isa 33:14 Gen 4:13 Matt 27:4 Heb 10:27 †), and vile affections (Rom 1:26 ); or outward, as the curse of God upon the creatures for our sakes (Gen 3:17 ), and all other evils that befall us in our bodies, names, estates, relations, and employments (Deut 28:15-68 ); together with death itself (Rom 6:21 , 23).
Q. 29. What are the punishments of sin in the world to come?
A. The punishments of sin in the world to come, are everlasting separation from the comfortable presence of God, and most grievous torments in soul and body, without intermission, in hell-fire for ever (2 Thess 1:9 Mark 9:43-44 , 46, 48; Luke 16:24 Matt 25:41 , 46†; Rev 14:11 †; John 3:36 †).
Q. 30. Doth God leave all mankind to perish in the estate of sin and misery?
A. God doth not leave all men to perish in the estate of sin and misery (1 Thess 5:9 ), into which they fell by the breach of the first covenant, commonly called the Covenant of Works (Gen 3:17 †; Rom 5:12 , 15†; Gal 3:10 , 12); but of his mere love and mercy delivereth his elect out of it, and bringeth them into an estate of salvation by the second covenant, commonly called the Covenant of Grace (Tit 3:4-7 1:2†; Gal 3:21 Rom 3:20-22 2 Thess 2:13-14 †; Acts 13:48 †; Eph 1:4-5 †).
Q. 31. With whom was the covenant of grace made?
A. The covenant of grace was made with Christ as the second Adam, and in him with all the elect as his seed (Gal 3:16 Rom 5:15-21 Isa 53:10-11 59:21†; Zech 6:13 †; Luke 22:29 †; 2 Sam 23:5 †).
Q. 32. How is the grace of God manifested in the second covenant?
A. The grace of God is manifested in the second covenant, in that he freely provideth and offereth to sinners a Mediator (Gen 3:15 Isa 42:6 John 6:27 1 Tim 2:5 †), and life and salvation by him (1 Jhn 5:11-12 ); and requiring faith as the condition to interest them in him (John 3:16 1:12; 3:36†), promiseth and giveth his Holy Spirit (Prov 1:23 Isa 59:21 †; Zech 12:10 †; Luke 11:13 †; John 14:16-20 †; 1 Cor 12:13 †; Rom 8:9 † [and vv. 4, 11, 14–16†]) to all his elect, to work in them that faith (2 Cor 4:13 1 Cor 12:3 , 9†; Eph 2:8-10 †; Acts 16:14 †; 2 Pet 1:1 †), with all other saving graces (Gal 5:22-23 ); and to enable them unto all holy obedience (Ezek 36:27 Eph 2:10 †), as the evidence of the truth of their faith (Jas 2:18 , 22) and thankfulness to God (2 Cor 5:14-15 ), and as the way which he hath appointed them to salvation (Eph 2:10 Tit 2:14 †; 3:8†).
Q. 33. Was the covenant of grace always administered after one and the same manner?
A. The covenant of grace was not always administered after the same manner, but the administrations of it under the Old Testament were different from those under the New (2 Cor 3:6-9 Heb 1:1-2 †; 8:7–8†).
Q. 34. How was the covenant of grace administered under the Old Testament?
A. The covenant of grace was administered under the Old Testament, by promises (Gen 3:15 †; 12:1–3†; 15:5†; Rom 15:8 Acts 3:20 †), prophecies (Isa 52:13-53:12 †; Acts 3:20 , 24), sacrifices (Lev 1-7 †; Heb 10:1 ), circumcision (Gen 17:1-14 †; Rom 4:11 ), the passover (1 Cor 5:7 Exod 12:14 , 17, 24†), and other types and ordinances, which did all fore-signify Christ then to come, and were for that time sufficient to build up the elect in faith in the promised Messiah (Heb 8-10 Heb 11:13 ), by whom they then had full remission of sin, and eternal salvation (Gal 3:7-9 , 14).
Q. 35. How is the covenant of grace administered under the New Testament?
A. Under the New Testament, when Christ the substance was exhibited, the same covenant of grace was and still is to be administered in the preaching of the word (Matt 28:19-20 †; Luke 24:47-48 †; Mark 16:15 [TR]), and the administration of the sacraments of baptism (Matt 28:19-20 ) and the Lord’s supper (Matt 26:28 †; 1 Cor 11:23-25 ); in which grace and salvation are held forth in more fulness, evidence, and efficacy, to all nations (Rom 1:16 †; 2 Cor 3:6-18 Heb 8:6 , 10-11; Matt 28:19 Eph 3:1-12 †).
Q. 36. Who is the Mediator of the covenant of grace?
A. The only Mediator of the covenant of grace is the Lord Jesus Christ (1 Tim 2:5 John 14:6 †; Acts 4:12 †), who, being the eternal Son of God, of one substance and equal with the Father (John 1:1 , 14; 10:30; Phil 2:6 Ps 2:7 †; Matt 3:17 †; Matt 17:5 †), in the fulness of the time became man (Gal 4:4 Matt 1:23 †; John 1:14 †), and so was and continues to be God and man, in two entire distinct natures, and one person, for ever (Luke 1:35 Acts 1:11 †; Rom 9:5 Col 2:9 Heb 7:24-25 13:8†; Phil 2:5-11 †).
Q. 37. How did Christ, being the Son of God, become man?
A. Christ the Son of God became man, by taking to himself a true body, and a reasonable soul (John 1:14 Matt 26:38 Phil 2:7 †; Heb 2:14-17 †; Luke 2:40 †; John 11:33 †), being conceived by the power of the Holy Ghost in the womb of the Virgin Mary, of her substance, and born of her (Luke 1:27 , 31, 35, 42; Gal 4:4 ), yet without sin (Heb 4:15 7:26; 2 Cor 5:21 †; 1 Jhn 3:5 †).
Q. 38. Why was it requisite that the Mediator should be God?
A. It was requisite that the Mediator should be God, that he might sustain and keep the human nature from sinking under the infinite wrath of God, and the power of death (Acts 2:24-25 Rom 1:4 Rom 4:25 Heb 9:14 ); give worth and efficacy to his sufferings, obedience, and intercession (Acts 20:28 Heb 9:14 7:25-28; John 17 †); and to satisfy God’s justice (Rom 3:24-26 ), procure his favour (Eph 1:6 Matt 3:17 ), purchase a peculiar people (Tit 2:13-14 ), give his Spirit to them (John 15:26 †; 16:7†; 14:26†; Gal 4:6 ), conquer all their enemies (Luke 1:68-69 , 71, 74), and bring them to everlasting salvation (Heb 5:8-9 9:11-16).
Q. 39. Why was it requisite that the Mediator should be man?
A. It was requisite that the Mediator should be man, that he might advance our nature (Heb 2:16 2 Pet 1:4 †), perform obedience to the law (Gal 4:4 Matt 5:17 †; Rom 5:19 †; Phil 2:8 †), suffer and make intercession for us in our nature (Heb 2:14 7:24-25), have a fellow-feeling of our infirmities (Heb 4:15 ); that we might receive the adoption of sons (Gal 4:5 ), and have comfort and access with boldness unto the throne of grace (Heb 4:16 ).
Q. 40. Why was it requisite that the Mediator should be God and man in one person?
A. It was requisite that the Mediator, who was to reconcile God and man, should himself be both God and man, and this in one person, that the proper works of each nature might be accepted of God for us (Matt 1:21 , 23; 3:17; Heb 9:14 ), and relied on by us, as the works of the whole person (1 Pet 2:6 ).
Q. 41. Why was our Mediator called Jesus?
A. Our Mediator was called Jesus, because he saveth his people from their sins (Matt 1:21 ).
Q. 42. Why was our Mediator called Christ?
A. Our Mediator was called Christ, because he was anointed with the Holy Ghost above measure (Matt 3:16 †; Acts 10:37-38 †; John 3:34 Ps 45:7 ); and so set apart, and fully furnished with all authority and ability (John 6:27 Matt 28:18-20 Rom 1:3-4 †), to execute the offices of prophet (Acts 3:21-22 Luke 4:18 , 21; Heb 1:1-2 †; Deut 18:18 †), priest (Heb 5:5-7 Heb 4:14-15 ), and king of his church (Ps 2:6 Luke 1:32-34 †; John 18:37 †; Matt 21:5 Isa 9:6-7 Phil 2:8-11 ), in the estate both of his humiliation and exaltation.
Q. 43. How doth Christ execute the office of a prophet?
A. Christ executeth the office of a prophet, in his revealing to the church (John 1:18 ), in all ages, by his Spirit and word (1 Pet 1:10-12 ), in divers ways of administration (Heb 1:1-2 ), the whole will of God (John 15:15 ), in al things concerning their edification and salvation (Acts 20:32 Eph 4:11-13 John 20:31 ).
Q. 44. How doth Christ execute the office of a priest?
A. Christ executeth the office of a priest, in his once offering himself a sacrifice without spot to God (Heb 9:14 , 28; 10:12†; Isa 53 †), to be a reconciliation for the sins of his people (Heb 2:17 2 Cor 5:18 †; Col 1:21-22 †); and in making continual intercession for them (Heb 7:25 9:24†).
Q. 45. How doth Christ execute the office of a king?
A. Christ executeth the office of a king, in calling out of the world a people to himself (Acts 15:14-16 Isa 55:4-5 Gen 49:10 Ps 110:3 John 17:2 †), and giving them officers (Eph 4:11-12 1 Cor 12:28 ), laws (Isa 33:22 ), and censures, by which he visibly governs them (Matt 18:17-18 1 Cor 5:4-5 1 Tim 5:20 †; Tit 3:10 †); in bestowing saving grace upon his elect (Acts 5:31 Ps 118:18 †), rewarding their obedience (Rev 22:12 2:10; Matt 25:34-36 †; Rom 2:7 †), and correcting them for their sins (Rev 3:19 Heb 12:6-7 †), preserving and supporting them under all their temptations and sufferings (Isa 63:9 ), restraining and overcoming all their enemies (1 Cor 15:25 Ps 110 ), and powerfully ordering all things for his own glory (Rom 14:10-11 Phil 2:11 †), and their good (Rom 8:28 ); and also in taking vengeance on the rest, who know not God, and obey not the gospel (2 Thess 1:8-9 Ps 2:8-9 ).
Q. 46. What was the estate of Christ’s humiliation?
A. The estate of Christ’s humiliation was that low condition, wherein he for our sakes, emptying himself of his glory, took upon him the form of a servant (Phil 2:6-8 ), in his conception (Luke 1:31 ) and birth (Luke 2:7 †), life (Gal 4:4 †; 2 Cor 8:9 Luke 9:58 †; Heb 2:18 †; Isa 53:3 †), death (Ps 22:1 †; Matt 27:46 †; Isa 53:10 †; 1 Jhn 2:2 †; Phil 2:8 †), and after his death (Matt 12:40 †; 1 Cor 15:3-4 †), until his resurrection (Acts 2:24 ).
Q. 47. How did Christ humble himself in his conception and birth?
A. Christ humbled himself in his conception and birth, in that, being from all eternity the Son of God, in the bosom of the Father, he was pleased in the fulness of time to become the son of man, made of a woman of low estate, and to be born of her; with divers circumstances of more than ordinary abasement (John 1:14 , 18; Gal 4:4 Luke 2:7 ).
Q. 48. How did Christ humble himself in his life?
A. Christ humbled himself in his life, by subjecting himself to the law (Gal 4:4 ), which he perfectly fulfilled (Matt 5:17 Rom 5:19 ); and by conflicting with the indignities of the world (Ps 22:6 Isa 53:2-3 †; Heb 12:2-3 ), temptations of Satan (Matt 4:1-12 Luke 4:13 ), and infirmities in his flesh, whether common to the nature of man, or particularly accompanying that his low condition (Heb 2:17-18 4:15; Isa 52:13-14 ).
Q. 49. How did Christ humble himself in his death?
A. Christ humbled himself in his death, in that having been betrayed by Judas (Matt 27:4 ), forsaken by his disciples (Matt 26:56 ), scorned and rejected by the world (Isa 53:2-3 ), condemned by Pilate, and tormented by his persecutors (Matt 27:26-50 John 19:34 Luke 22:63-64 †); having also conflicted with the terrors of death, and the powers of darkness, felt and borne the weight of God’s wrath (Luke 22:44 Matt 27:46 Rom 8:32 †), he laid down his life an offering for sin (Isa 53:10 Matt 20:28 †; Mark 10:45 †), enduring the painful, shameful, and cursed death of the cross (Phil 2:8 Heb 12:2 Gal 3:13 ).
Q. 50. Wherein consisted Christ’s humiliation after his death?
A. Christ’s humiliation after his death consisted in his being buried (1 Cor 15:3-4 ), and continuing in the state of the dead, and under the power of death till the third day (Ps 16:10 Acts 2:24-27 , 31; Rom 6:9 Matt 12:40 ); which hath been otherwise expressed in these words, He descended into hell.
Q. 51. What was the estate of Christ’s exaltation?
A. The estate of Christ’s exaltation comprehendeth his resurrection (1 Cor 15:4 ), ascension (Ps 68:18 †; Mark 16:19 [TR]; Acts 1:11 †; Eph 4:8 †), sitting at the right hand of the Father (Eph 1:20 Ps 110:1 †; Acts 2:33-34 †; Heb 1:3 †), and his coming again to judge the world (Acts 1:11 Acts 17:31 Matt 16:27 †).
Q. 52. How was Christ exalted in his resurrection?
A. Christ was exalted in his resurrection, in that, not having seen corruption in death, (of which it was not possible for him to be held [Acts 2:24 , 27; Ps 16:10 †],) and having the very same body in which he suffered, with the essential properties thereof (Luke 24:39 ), (but without mortality, and other common infirmities belonging to this life,) really united to his soul (Rom 6:9 Rev 1:18 ), he rose again from the dead the third day by his own power (John 10:18 ); whereby he declared himself to be the Son of God (Rom 1:4 ), to have satisfied divine justice (Rom 8:34 3:25-26†; Heb 9:13-14 †), to have vanquished death, and him that had the power of it (Heb 2:14 ), and to be Lord of quick and dead (Rom 14:9 ): all which he did as a public person (1 Cor 15:21-22 Isa 53:10-11 †), the head of his church (Eph 1:20 , 22-23; Col 1:18 ), for their justification (Rom 4:25 ), quickening in grace (Eph 2:1 , 5-6; Col 2:12 ), support against enemies (1 Cor 15:25-27 Ps 2:7-9 †), and to assure them of their resurrection from the dead at the last day (1 Cor 15:20 1 Thess 4:14 †).
Q. 53. How was Christ exalted in his ascension?
A. Christ was exalted in his ascension, in that having after his resurrection often appeared unto and conversed with his apostles, speaking to them of the things pertaining to the kingdom of God (Acts 1:2-3 ), and giving them commission to preach the gospel to all nations (Matt 28:19-20 Mark 16:15 †), forty days after his resurrection, he, in our nature, and as our head (John 20:17 †; Heb 6:20 ), triumphing over enemies (Eph 4:8 ), visibly went up into the highest heavens, there to receive gifts for men (Acts 1:9-11 Eph 4:7-8 †; Eph 4:10 Ps 68:18 Acts 2:33 †), to raise up our affections thither (Col 3:1-2 ), and to prepare a place for us (John 14:3 ), where himself is, and shall continue till his second coming at the end of the world (Acts 3:21 ).
Q. 54. How is Christ exalted in his sitting at the right hand of God?
A. Christ is exalted in his sitting at the right hand of God, in that as God-man he is advanced to the highest favour with God the Father (Phil 2:9 ), with all fulness of joy (Acts 2:28 Ps 16:11 ), glory (John 17:5 ), and power over all things in heaven and earth (Dan 7:13-14 †; Eph 1:22 1 Pet 3:22 ); and doth gather and defend his church, and subdue their enemies; furnisheth his ministers and people with gifts and graces (Eph 4:10-12 Ps 110 Heb 10:12-14 †; Ezek 37:24 †), and maketh intercession for them (Rom 8:34 1 Jhn 2:1 †; Heb 7:25 †).
Q. 55. How doth Christ make intercession?
A. Christ maketh intercession, by his appearing in our nature continually before the Father in heaven (Heb 9:12 , 24), in the merit of his obedience and sacrifice on earth (Isa 53:12 †; Heb 1:3 ), declaring his will to have it applied to all believers (John 3:16 17:9, 20, 24); answering all accusations against them (Rom 8:33-34 ), and procuring for them quiet of conscience, notwithstanding daily failings (Rom 5:1-2 1 Jhn 2:1-2 ), access with boldness to the throne of grace (Heb 4:16 ), and acceptance of their persons (Eph 1:6 ) and services (1 Pet 2:5 Rev 8:3-4 †).
Q. 56. How is Christ to be exalted in his coming again to judge the world?
A. Christ is to be exalted in his coming again to judge the world, in that he, who was unjustly judged and condemned by wicked men (Acts 3:14-15 ), shall come again at the last day in great power (Matt 24:30 2 Thess 1:9-10 †), and in the full manifestation of his own glory, and of his Father’s, with all his holy angels (Luke 9:26 Matt 25:31 ), with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trumpet of God (1 Thess 4:16 ), to judge the world in righteousness (Acts 17:31 2 Thess 1:6-8 †).
Q. 57. What benefits hath Christ procured by his mediation?
A. Christ, by his mediation, hath procured redemption (1 Tim 2:5-6 †; Heb 9:12 Eph 1:7 †), with all other benefits of the covenant of grace (2 Cor 1:20 Eph 1:3-6 †; 2 Pet 1:3-4 †).
Q. 58. How do we come to be made partakers of the benefits which Christ hath procured?
A. We are made partakers of the benefits which Christ hath procured, by the application of them unto us (John 1:11-12 ), which is the work especially of God the Holy Ghost (Tit 3:5-6 John 16:7-8 †; 16:14–15†; 3:3–8†).
Q. 59. Who are made partakers of redemption through Christ?
A. Redemption is certainly applied, and effectually communicated, to all those for whom Christ hath purchased it (Eph 1:13-14 John 6:37 , 39; 10:15-16); who are in time by the Holy Ghost enabled to believe in Christ according to the gospel (Rom 10:17 †; 1 Cor 2:12-16 †; Eph 2:8 2 Cor 4:13 John 3:36 †; Rom 8:9 , 14†).
Q. 60. Can they who have never heard the gospel, and so know not Jesus Christ, nor believe in him, be saved by their living according to the light of nature?
A. They who, having never heard the gospel (Rom 10:14 ), know not Jesus Christ (2 Thess 1:8-9 Eph 2:12 John 1:10-12 ), and believe not in him, cannot be saved (John 8:24 Mark 16:16 [TR]; John 3:18 †), be they never so diligent to frame their lives according to the light of nature (1 Cor 1:20-24 ), or the laws of that religion which they profess (John 4:22 Rom 9:31-32 Phil 3:4-9 ); neither is there salvation in any other, but in Christ alone (Acts 4:12 ), who is the Saviour only of his body the church (Eph 5:23 ).
Q. 61. Are all they saved who hear the gospel, and live in the church?
A. All that hear the gospel, and live in the visible church, are not saved; but they only who are true members of the church invisible (John 12:38-40 Rom 9:6 Matt 22:14 7:21; Rom 11:7 1 Cor 10:2-5 †).
Q. 62. What is the visible church?
A. The visible church is a society made up of all such as in all ages and places of the world do profess the true religion (1 Cor 1:2 12:13; Rom 15:9-12 Rev 7:9 Ps 2:8 22:27-31; 45:17; Matt 28:19-20 Isa 59:21 ), and of their children (1 Cor 7:14 Acts 2:39 Rom 11:16 Gen 17:7 ).
Q. 63. What are the special privileges of the visible church?
A. The visible church hath the privilege of being under God’s special care and government (Isa 4:5-6 [?]; 1 Tim 4:10 Eph 4:11-13 †); of being protected and preserved in all ages, notwithstanding the opposition of all enemies (Matt 16:18 †; Ps 115:1-18 Isa 31:4-5 Zech 12:2-4 , 8-9; Exod 3:2-3 † [?]); and of enjoying the communion of saints, the ordinary means of salvation (Acts 2:39 , 42; Matt 28:19-20 †; 1 Cor 12:12-13 †), and offers of grace by Christ to all the members of it in the ministry of the gospel, testifying, that whosoever believes in him shall be saved (Ps 147:19-20 Rom 9:4 Eph 4:11-12 Mark 16:15-16 [TR]; Acts 16:31 †; 22:16†; 2:21†; Joel 2:32 †; Rom 10:10-13 , 17†; Isa 45:22 †; Rev 22:17 †), and excluding none that will come unto him (Matt 11:28-29 †; John 6:37 ).
Q. 64. What is the invisible church?
A. The invisible church is the whole number of the elect, that have been, are, or shall be gathered into one under Christ the head (Eph 1:10 , 22-23; John 10:16 11:52; Eph 5:23 , 27, 32†).
Q. 65. What special benefits do the members of the invisible church enjoy by Christ?
A. The members of the invisible church by Christ enjoy union and communion with him in grace and glory (John 17:21 Eph 2:5-6 John 17:24 1 Jhn 1:3 †; John 1:16 †; Eph 3:16-19 †; Phil 3:10 †; Rom 6:5-6 †).
Q. 66. What is that union which the elect have with Christ?
A. The union which the elect have with Christ is the work of God’s grace (Eph 1:22 2:6-8), whereby they are spiritually and mystically, yet really and inseparably, joined to Christ as their head and husband (1 Cor 6:17 John 10:28 Eph 5:23 , 30; John 15:5 †; Eph 3:17 †); which is done in their effectual calling (1 Pet 5:10 1 Cor 1:9 ).
Q. 67. What is effectual calling?
A. Effectual calling is the work of God’s almighty power and grace (Ezek 37:9 , 14†; John 5:25 Eph 1:18-20 2 Tim 1:8-9 ), whereby (out of his free and special love to his elect, and from nothing in them moving him thereunto [Tit 3:4-5 Eph 2:4-5 , 7-9; Rom 9:11 Deut 9:5 †]) he doth, in his accepted time, invite and draw them to Jesus Christ, by his word and Spirit (John 3:5 †; Tit 3:5 †; 2 Cor 5:20 6:1-2; John 6:44 Acts 16:14 †; 2 Thess 2:13-14 ); savingly enlightening their minds (Acts 26:18 1 Cor 2:10 , 12; 2 Cor 4:6 †; Eph 1:17-18 †), renewing and powerfully determining their wills (Ezek 11:19 36:26-27; John 6:45 ), so as they (although in themselves dead in sin) are hereby made willing and able freely to answer his call, and to accept and embrace the grace offered and conveyed therein (Eph 2:5 Phil 2:13 Deut 30:6 Isa 45:22 †; Matt 11:28-30 †; Rev 22:17 †).
Q. 68. Are the elect only effectually called?
A. All the elect, and they only, are effectually called (Acts 13:48 ); although others may be, and often are, outwardly called by the ministry of the word (Matt 22:14 Acts 8:13 , 20-21†), and have some common operations of the Spirit (Matt 7:22 13:20-21; Heb 6:4-5 ); who, for their wilful neglect and contempt of the grace offered to them, being justly left in their unbelief, do never truly come to Jesus Christ (John 12:38-40 Acts 28:25-27 John 6:64-65 Ps 81:11-12 Prov 1:24-32 †; Ps 95:9-11 †; Heb 10:29 †; 1 Jhn 2:19 †).
Q. 69. What is the communion in grace which the members of the invisible church have with Christ?
A. The communion in grace which the members of the invisible church have with Christ, is their partaking of the virtue of his mediation, in their justification (Rom 8:30 ), adoption (Eph 1:5 ), sanctification, and whatever else, in this life, manifests their union with him (1 Cor 1:30 6:11†).
Q. 70. What is justification?
A. Justification is an act of God’s free grace unto sinners (Rom 3:23-25 4:5), in which he pardoneth all their sins, accepteth and accounteth their persons righteous in his sight (Jer 23:6 †; Rom 4:6-8 †; 2 Cor 5:19 , 21; Rom 3:22 , 24-28); not for any thing wrought in them, or done by them (Tit 3:5 , 7; Eph 1:7 Rom 3:28 †), but only for the perfect obedience and full satisfaction of Christ, by God imputed to them (Rom 3:24-25 †; 5:17–19; 4:6–8), and received by faith alone (Rom 3:25-26 †; 5:1†; Acts 10:43 Gal 2:16 Phil 3:9 ).
Q. 71. How is justification an act of God’s free grace?
A. Although Christ, by his obedience and death, did make a proper, real, and full satisfaction to God’s justice in the behalf of them that are justified (Matt 20:28 †; Rom 5:8-10 , 19; 1 Tim 2:6 †; 1 Pet 1:18-19 †); yet in as much as God accepteth the satisfaction from a surety, which he might have demanded of them, and did provide this surety, his own only Son (1 Tim 2:5-6 Heb 10:10 Matt 20:28 Dan 9:24 , 26; Isa 53:4-6 , 10-12; Heb 7:22 Rom 8:32 1 Pet 1:18-19 ), imputing his righteousness to them (2 Cor 5:21 Rom 4:6 , 11†; 1 Cor 1:30 †), and requiring nothing of them for their justification but faith (Rom 3:24-25 Acts 16:31 †), which also is his gift (Eph 2:8 ), their justification is to them of free grace (Eph 1:7 Rom 3:24-25 †).
Q. 72. What is justifying faith?
A. Justifying faith is a saving grace (Heb 10:39 ), wrought in the heart of a sinner by the Spirit (2 Cor 4:13 Eph 1:17-19 1 Cor 12:3 †; 1 Pet 1:2 †) and word of God (Rom 10:14 , 17; 1:16†; 1 Cor 1:21 †), whereby he, being convinced of his sin and misery, and of the disability in himself and all other creatures to recover him out of his lost condition (Acts 2:37 16:30; John 16:8-9 Rom 5:6 7:9†; Eph 2:1 Acts 4:12 ), not only assenteth to the truth of the promise of the gospel (Eph 1:13 Heb 11:13 †), but receiveth and resteth upon Christ and his righteousness, therein held forth, for pardon of sin (John 1:12 Acts 16:31 10:43; Zech 3:8-9 †), and for the accepting and accounting of his person righteous in the sight of God for salvation (Phil 3:9 Acts 15:11 ).
Q. 73. How doth faith justify a sinner in the sight of God?
A. Faith justifies a sinner in the sight of God, not because of those other graces which do always accompany it, or of good works that are the fruits of it (Gal 3:11 Rom 3:28 ), nor as if the grace of faith, or any act thereof, were imputed to him for his justification (Rom 4:5 10:10); but only as it is an instrument by which he receiveth and applieth Christ and his righteousness (John 1:12 Phil 3:9 Gal 2:16 ).
Q. 74. What is adoption?
A. Adoption is an act of the free grace of God (1 Jhn 3:1 ), in and for his only Son Jesus Christ (Eph 1:5 Gal 4:4-5 ), whereby all those that are justified are received into the number of his children (John 1:12 Rom 8:15-16 †), have his name put upon them (Num 6:24-27 †; Amos 9:12 †; 2 Cor 6:18 Rev 3:12 ), the Spirit of his Son given to them (Gal 4:6 ), are under his fatherly care and dispensations (Ps 103:13 Prov 14:26 Matt 6:32 Heb 12:5-7 , 11†), admitted to all the liberties and privileges of the sons of God, made heirs of all the promises, and fellow-heirs with Christ in glory (Heb 6:12 Rom 8:17 1 Pet 1:3-4 †).
Q. 75. What is sanctification?
A. Sanctification is a work of God’s grace, whereby they whom God hath, before the foundation of the world, chosen to be holy, are in time, through the powerful operation of his Spirit (Ezek 36:27 †; Phil 2:13 †; Eph 1:4 1 Cor 6:11 2 Thess 2:13 ) applying the death and resurrection of Christ unto them (Rom 6:4-6 Col 3:1-3 †; Phil 3:10 †), renewed in their whole man after the image of God (2 Cor 5:17 †; Eph 4:23-24 1 Thess 5:23 †); having the seeds of repentance unto life, and all other saving graces, put into their hearts (Acts 11:18 1 Jhn 3:9 ), and those graces so stirred up, increased, and strengthened (Jud 1:20 Heb 6:11-12 Eph 3:16-19 Col 1:10-11 ), as that they more and more die unto sin, and rise unto newness of life (Ezek 36:25-27 †; Rom 6:4 , 6, 14; 2 Cor 7:1 †; 1 Pet 2:24 †; Gal 5:24 ).
Q. 76. What is repentance unto life?
A. Repentance unto life is a saving grace (2 Tim 2:25 Acts 11:18 †), wrought in the heart of a sinner by the Spirit (Zech 12:10 ) and word of God (Acts 11:18 , 20-21; Ps 19:7-14 †; Acts 2:37 †), whereby, out of the sight and sense, not only of the danger (Ezek 18:28 , 30, 32; Luke 15:17-18 Hos 2:6-7 ), but also of the filthiness and odiousness of his sins (Ezek 36:31 16:61, 63†; Isa 30:22 Phil 3:7-8 †), and upon the apprehension of God’s mercy in Christ to such as are penitent (Ps 51:1-4 †; 130:3–7†; Joel 2:12-13 Zech 12:10 †; Luke 15:7 , 10†; Acts 2:37 †), he so grieves for (Jer 31:18-19 Ps 32:5 †) and hates his sins (2 Cor 7:11 ), as that he turns from them all to God (Luke 1:16-17 †; 1 Thess 1:9 †; Acts 26:18 Ezek 14:6 1 Kgs 8:47-48 1 Sam 7:3 †), purposing and endeavouring constantly to walk with him in all the ways of new obedience (2 Chr 7:14†; Ps 119:6 , 59, 128; Matt 3:8 †; 2 Cor 7:10 †; Luke 1:6 2 Kgs 23:25 ).
Q. 77. Wherein do justification and sanctification differ?
A. Although sanctification be inseparably joined with justification (1 Cor 6:11 1:30), yet they differ, in that God in justification imputeth the righteousness of Christ (Rom 4:6 , 8; 2 Cor 5:21 †; Rom 3:24 †); in sanctification his Spirit infuseth grace, and enableth to the exercise thereof (Ezek 36:27 Heb 9:13-14 †); in the former, sin is pardoned (Rom 3:24-25 ); in the other, it is subdued (Rom 6:6 , 14): the one doth equally free all believers from the revenging wrath of God, and that perfectly in this life, that they never fall into condemnation (Rom 8:33-34 ); the other is neither equal in all (1 Jhn 2:12-14 Heb 5:12-14 ), nor in this life perfect in any (1 Jhn 1:8 , 10), but growing up to perfection (2 Cor 7:1 Phil 3:12-14 ).
Q. 78. Whence ariseth the imperfection of sanctification in believers?
A. The imperfection of sanctification in believers ariseth from the remnants of sin abiding in every part of them, and the perpetual lustings of the flesh against the spirit; whereby they are often foiled with temptations, and fall into many sins (Rom 7:18 , 23; Mark 14:66-72 Gal 2:11-12 ), are hindered in all their spiritual services (Gal 5:17 †; Heb 12:1 ), and their best works are imperfect and defiled in the sight of God (Isa 64:6 Exod 28:38 Gal 5:16-18 †).
Q. 79. May not true believers, by reason of their imperfections, and the many temptations and sins they are overtaken with, fall away from the state of grace?
A. True believers, by reason of the unchangeable love of God (Jer 31:3 John 13:1 †), and his decree and covenant to give them perseverance (2 Tim 2:19 Heb 13:20-21 2 Sam 23:5 Isa 54:10 †), their inseparable union with Christ (1 Cor 1:8-9 ), his continual intercession for them (Heb 7:25 Luke 22:32 ), and the Spirit and seed abiding in them (1 Jhn 3:9 2:27), can neither totally nor finally fall away from the state of grace (Jer 32:40 John 10:28 ), but are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation (1 Pet 1:5 Phil 1:6 †).
Q. 80. Can true believers be infallibly assured that they are in the estate of grace, and that they shall persevere therein unto salvation?
A. Such as truly believe in Christ, and endeavour to walk in all good conscience before him (1 Jhn 2:3 Heb 10:19-23 †), may, without extraordinary revelation, by faith grounded upon the truth of God’s promises, and by the Spirit enabling them to discern in themselves those graces to which the promises of life are made (1 Cor 2:12 1 Jhn 3:14 , 18-19, 21, 24; 4:13, 16; Heb 6:11-12 ), and bearing witness with their spirits that they are the children of God (Rom 8:16 ), be infallibly assured that they are in the estate of grace, and shall persevere therein unto salvation (1 Jhn 5:13 Heb 6:19-20 †; 2 Pet 1:5-11 †).
Q. 81. Are all true believers at all times assured of their present being in the estate of grace, and that they shall be saved?
A. Assurance of grace and salvation not being of the essence of faith (Eph 1:13 ), true believers may wait long before they obtain it (Isa 50:10 Ps 88:1-18 ); and, after the enjoyment thereof, may have it weakened and intermitted, through manifold distempers, sins, temptations, and desertions (Ps 77:1-12 Song 5:2-3 , 6; Ps 51:8 , 12; 31:22; 22:1; 30:6-7†; 51:13†; Eph 4:30 †; Luke 22:31-34 †); yet they are never left without such a presence and support of the Spirit of God as keeps them from sinking into utter despair (1 Jhn 3:9 Jb 13:15 Ps 73:15 , 23; Isa 54:7-10 1 Pet 4:12-14 †).
Q. 82. What is the communion in glory which the members of the invisible church have with Christ?
A. The communion in glory which the members of the invisible church have with Christ, is in this life (2 Cor 3:18 ), immediately after death (Luke 23:43 ), and at last perfected at the resurrection and day of judgment (1 Thess 4:17 ).
Q. 83. What is the communion in glory with Christ which the members of the invisible church enjoy in this life?
A. The members of the invisible church have communicated to them in this life the first-fruits of glory with Christ, as they are members of him their head, and so in him are interested in that glory which he is fully possessed of (Eph 2:5-6 ); and, as an earnest thereof, enjoy the sense of God’s love (Rom 5:5 2 Cor 1:22 ), peace of conscience, joy in the Holy Ghost, and hope of glory (Rom 5:1-2 14:17; 2 Pet 3:18 †); as, on the contrary, sense of God’s revenging wrath, horror of conscience, and a fearful expectation of judgment, are to the wicked the beginning of their torments which they shall endure after death (Gen 4:13 Matt 27:4 Heb 10:27 Rom 2:9 Mark 9:44 [av]).
Q. 85. Death, being the wages of sin, why are not the righteous delivered from death, seeing all their sins are forgiven in Christ?
A. The righteous shall be delivered from death itself at the last day, and even in death are delivered from the sting and curse of it (1 Cor 15:26 , 56; Heb 2:15 John 11:25-26 †); so that, although they die, yet it is out of God’s love (Isa 57:1-2 2 Kgs 22:20 ), to free them perfectly from sin and misery (Rev 14:13 Eph 5:27 ), and to make them capable of further communion with Christ in glory, which they then enter upon (Luke 23:43 Phil 1:23 ).
Q. 86. What is the communion in glory with Christ, which the members of the invisible church enjoy immediately after death?
A. The communion in glory with Christ, which the members of the invisible church enjoy immediately after death, is, in that their souls are then made perfect in holiness (Heb 12:23 Acts 7:55 , 59†; 1 Jhn 3:2 †; Eph 5:27 †), and received into the highest heavens (2 Cor 5:1 , 6, 8; Phil 1:23 Acts 3:21 Eph 4:10 Luke 23:43 †), where they behold the face of God in light and glory (1 Jhn 3:2 1 Cor 13:12 Rev 22:4-5 †; Matt 5:8 †), waiting for the full redemption of their bodies (Rom 8:23 Ps 16:9 ), which even in death continue united to Christ (1 Thess 4:14 ), and rest in their graves as in their beds (Isa 57:2 ), till at the last day they be again united to their souls (Jb 19:26-27 ). Whereas the souls of the wicked are at their death cast into hell, where they remain in torments and utter darkness, and their bodies kept in their graves, as in their prisons, till the resurrection and judgment of the great day (Luke 16:23-24 Acts 1:25 Jud 1:6-7 ).
Q. 87. What are we to believe concerning the resurrection?
A. We are to believe, that at the last day there shall be a general resurrection of the dead, both of the just and unjust (Dan 12:2 †; Acts 24:15 ): when they that are then found alive shall in a moment be changed; and the self-same bodies of the dead which were laid in the grave, being then again united to their souls for ever, shall be raised up by the power of Christ (Jb 19:26 †; 1 Cor 15:51-53 1 Thess 4:15-17 John 5:28-29 Rom 8:11 †). The bodies of the just, by the Spirit of Christ, and by virtue of his resurrection as their head, shall be raised in power, spiritual, incorruptible, and made like to his glorious body (1 Cor 15:21-23 , 42-44; Phil 3:21 Dan 12:2 †); and the bodies of the wicked shall be raised up in dishonour by him, as an offended judge (John 5:27-29 Matt 25:33 Dan 12:2 †).
Q. 88. What shall immediately follow after the resurrection?
A. Immediately after the resurrection shall follow the general and final judgment of angels and men (Eccl 12:14 †; 2 Pet 2:4 2 Cor 5:10 †; Rom 14:10 , 12†; Jud 1:6-7 , 14-15; Matt 25:46 Rev 20:12 †); the day and hour whereof no man knoweth, that all may watch and pray, and be ever ready for the coming of the Lord (Matt 24:36 , 42, 44; Mark 13:35-37 †; Luke 21:35-36 ).
Q. 89. What shall be done to the wicked at the day of judgment?
A. At the day of judgment, the wicked shall be set on Christ’s left hand (Matt 25:33 ), and, upon clear evidence, and full conviction of their own consciences (Rom 2:15-16 ), shall have the fearful but just sentence of condemnation pronounced against them (Matt 25:41-43 ); and thereupon shall be cast out from the favourable presence of God, and the glorious fellowship with Christ, his saints, and all his holy angels, into hell, to be punished with unspeakable torments, both of body and soul, with the devil and his angels for ever (Matt 25:46 †; Luke 16:26 2 Thess 1:8-9 John 3:36 †; Mark 9:43-44 † [av]; 14:21†).
Q. 90. What shall be done to the righteous at the day of judgment?
A. At the day of judgment, the righteous, being caught up to Christ in the clouds (1 Thess 4:17 1 Cor 15:42-43 †), shall be set on his right hand, and there openly acknowledged and acquitted (Matt 25:33 10:32), shall join with him in the judging of reprobate angels and men (1 Cor 6:2-3 ), and shall be received into heaven (Matt 25:34 , 46), where they shall be fully and for ever freed from all sin and misery (Eph 5:27 Rev 7:17 †; 14:13); filled with inconceivable joys (Ps 16:11 1 Cor 2:9 †), made perfectly holy and happy both in body and soul, in the company of innumerable saints and holy angels (Heb 12:22-23 ), but especially in the immediate vision and fruition of God the Father, of our Lord Jesus Christ, and of the Holy Spirit, to all eternity (1 Jhn 3:2 Rom 8:29 †; 1 Cor 13:12 1 Thess 4:17-18 Rev 22:3-5 †). And this is the perfect and full communion, which the members of the invisible church shall enjoy with Christ in glory, at the resurrection and day of judgment.
Having Seen What the Scriptures Principally Teach Us to Believe Concerning God, It Follows to Consider What They Require as the Duty of Man.
Q. 92. What did God at first reveal unto man as the rule of his obedience?
A. The rule of obedience revealed to Adam in the estate of innocence, and to all mankind in him, besides a special command not to eat of the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, was the moral law (Gen 1:26-27 Rom 2:14-15 10:5; Gen 2:17 ).
Q. 93. What is the moral law?
A. The moral law is the declaration of the will of God to mankind, directing and binding every one to personal, perfect, and perpetual conformity and obedience thereunto, in the frame and disposition of the whole man, soul and body (Deut 5:1-3 , 32-33; Luke 10:26-27 Gal 3:10 1 Thess 5:23 Eph 4:24 †), and in performance of all those duties of holiness and righteousness which he oweth to God and man (Luke 1:75 Acts 24:16 1 Pet 1:15-16 †): promising life upon the fulfilling, and threatening death upon the breach of it (Rom 10:5 Gal 3:10 , 12; Rom 5:12 †).
Q. 94. Is there any use of the moral law to man since the fall?
A. Although no man, since the fall, can attain to righteousness and life by the moral law (Rom 8:3 Gal 2:16 ); yet there is great use thereof, as well common to all men, as peculiar either to the unregenerate, or the regenerate (1 Tim 1:8 ).
Q. 95. Of what use is the moral law to all men?
A. The moral law is of use to all men, to inform them of the holy nature and will of God (Rom 1:20 †; Lev 11:44-45 20:7-8; Rom 7:12 ), and of their duty, binding them to walk accordingly (Mic 6:8 Jas 2:10-11 Rom 1:32 †); to convince them of their disability to keep it, and of the sinful pollution of their nature, hearts, and lives (Ps 19:11-12 Rom 3:20 7:7): to humble them in the sense of their sin and misery (Rom 3:9 , 23; 7:9, 13†), and thereby help them to a clearer sight of the need they have of Christ (Gal 3:21-22 ), and of the perfection of his obedience (Rom 10:4 ).
Q. 96. What particular use is there of the moral law to unregenerate men?
A. The moral law is of use to unregenerate men, to awaken their consciences to flee from wrath to come (Ps 51:13 †; 1 Tim 1:9-10 ), and to drive them to Christ (Gal 3:24 ); or, upon their continuance in the estate and way of sin, to leave them inexcusable (Rom 1:20 2:15), and under the curse thereof (Gal 3:10 ).
Q. 97. What special use is there of the moral law to the regenerate?
A. Although they that are regenerate, and believe in Christ, be delivered from the moral law as a covenant of works (Rom 6:14 7:4, 6; Gal 4:4-5 Col 2:13-14 †), so as thereby they are neither justified (Rom 3:20 ) nor condemned (Gal 5:23 Rom 8:1 ); yet, besides the general uses thereof common to them with all men, it is of special use, to shew them how much they are bound to Christ for his fulfilling it, and enduring the curse thereof in their stead, and for their good (Rom 7:24-25 Gal 3:13-14 Rom 8:3-4 2 Cor 5:21 †; Acts 13:38-39 †); and thereby to provoke them to more thankfulness (Luke 1:68-69 , 74-75; Col 1:12-14 Rom 6:14 †), and to express the same in their greater care to conform themselves thereunto as the rule of their obedience (Deut 30:19-20 †; Rom 7:22 12:2; Tit 2:11-14 Jas 1:25 †).
Q. 98. Where is the moral law summarily comprehended?
A. The moral law is summarily comprehended in the ten commandments, which were delivered by the voice of God upon mount Sinai, and written by him in two tables of stone (Deut 4:13 †; 10:4; Exod 34:1-4 Rom 13:8-10 †; Jas 2:8 , 10-12†); and are recorded in the twentieth chapter of Exodus (Exod 20:2-17 ). The four first commandments containing our duty to God, and the other six our duty to man (Matt 22:37-40 Matt 19:17-19 †).
Q. 99. What rules are to be observed for the right understanding of the ten commandments?
A. For the right understanding of the ten commandments, these rules are to be observed:
That the law is perfect, and bindeth every one to full conformity in the whole man unto the righteousness thereof, and unto entire obedience fore ever; so as to require the utmost perfection of every duty, and to forbid the least degree of every sin (Ps 19:7 Jas 2:10 Matt 5:21-48 ).
That it is spiritual, and so reacheth the understanding, will, affections, and all other powers of the soul; as well as words, works, and gestures (Rom 7:14 Deut 6:5 cf. Matt 22:37-39 5:21-22, 27-28, 33-34, 36-48; 12:36-37†).
That one and the same thing, in divers respects, is required or forbidden in several commandments (Col 3:5 Amos 8:5 Prov 1:19 1 Tim 6:10 Exod 20:3-5 †).
That as, where a duty is commanded, the contrary sin is forbidden (Isa 53:13 Deut 6:13 Matt 4:9-10 15:4-6); and, where a sin is forbidden, the contrary duty is commanded (Matt 5:21-25 Eph 4:28 ): so, where a promise is annexed, the contrary threatening is included (Exod 20:12 Prov 30:17 ); and, where a threatening is annexed, the contrary promise is included (Jer 18:7-8 Exod 20:7 cf. Ps 15:1 , 4-5; 24:4-5).
That what God forbids, is at no time to be done (Jb 13:7-8 Rom 3:8 Jb 36:21 Heb 11:25 ); what he commands, is always our duty (Deut 4:8-9 Luke 17:10 †); and yet every particular duty is not to be done at all times (Matt 12:7 Mark 14:7 †).
That under one sin or duty, all of the same kind are forbidden or commanded; together with all the causes, means, occasions, and appearances thereof, and provocations thereunto (Matt 5:21-22 , 27-28; 15:4-6; Heb 10:24-25 1 Thess 5:22 Gal 5:26 Col 3:21 ).
That what is forbidden or commanded to ourselves, we are bound, according to our places, to endeavour that it may be avoided or performed by others, according to the duty of their places (Exod 20:10 Lev 19:17 Gen 18:19 Josh 24:15 Deut 6:6-7 Heb 10:24-25 †).
That in what is commanded to others, we are bound, according to our places and callings, to be helpful to them (2 Cor 1:24 ); and to take heed of partaking with others in what is forbidden them (1 Tim 5:22 Eph 5:11 ).
Q. 100. What special things are we to consider in the ten commandments?
A. We are to consider, in the ten commandments, the preface, the substance of the commandments themselves, and several reasons annexed to some of them, the more to enforce them (Exod 20:2-17 ‡; Eph 6:1-3 †).
Q. 101. What is the preface to the ten commandments?
A. The preface to the ten commandments is contained in these words, I am the Lord thy God, which have brought thee out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage (Exod 20:2 Deut 5:6 †). Wherein God manifesteth his sovereignty, as being JEHOVAH, the eternal, immutable, and almighty God (Isa 44:6 ); having his being in and of himself (Exod 3:14 ), and giving being to all his words (Exod 6:3 ) and works (Acts 17:24 , 28): and that he is a God in covenant, as with Israel of old, so with all his people (Gen 17:7 Rom 3:29 ); who, as he brought them out of their bondage in Egypt, so he delivereth us from our spiritual thraldom (Luke 1:74-75 Gal 5:1 †); and that therefore we are bound to take him for our God alone, and to keep all his commandments (1 Pet 1:15-18 Lev 18:30 19:37).
Q. 102. What is the sum of the four commandments which contain our duty to God?
A. The sum of the four commandments containing our duty to God, is, to love the Lord our God with all our heart, and with all our soul, and with all our strength, and with all our mind (Luke 10:27 Matt 22:37-40 †).
Q. 104. What are the duties required in the first commandment?
A. The duties required in the first commandment are, the knowing and acknowledging of God to be the only true God, and our God (1 Chr 28:9 Deut 26:17 Isa 43:10 Jer 14:22 ); and to worship and glorify him accordingly (Ps 95:6-7 Matt 4:10 Ps 29:2 ), by thinking (Mal 3:16 ), meditating (Ps 63:6 ), remembering (Eccl 12:1 ), highly esteeming (Ps 71:19 ), honouring (Mal 1:6 ), adoring (Isa 45:23 Ps 96:1-13 †), choosing (Josh 24:15 , 22), loving (Deut 6:5 ), desiring (Ps 73:25 ), fearing him (Isa 8:13 ); believing him (Exod 14:31 Rom 10:11 †; Acts 10:43 †); trusting (Isa 26:4 Ps 40:4 †), hoping (Ps 130:7 ), delighting (Ps 37:4 ), rejoicing in him (Ps 32:11 ); being zealous for him (Rom 12:11 Rev 3:19 †; Num 25:11 ); calling upon him, giving all praise and thanks (Phil 4:6 ), and yielding all obedience and submission to him with the whole man (Jer 7:23 Jas 4:7 Rom 12:1 †); being careful in all things to please him (1 Jhn 3:22 ), and sorrowful when in any thing he is offended (Neh 13:8 †; Ps 73:21 †; Jer 31:18 Ps 119:136 ); and walking humbly with him (Mic 6:8 ).
Q. 105. What are the sins forbidden in the first commandment?
A. The sins forbidden in the first commandment, are, Atheism, in denying or not having a God (Ps 14:1 Eph 2:12 ); Idolatry, in having or worshipping more gods than one, or any with or instead of the true God (Jer 2:27-28 1 Thess 1:9 ); the not having and avouching him for God, and our God (Ps 81:11 Rom 1:21 †); the omission or neglect of any thing due to him, required in this commandment (Isa 43:22-24 ); ignorance (Jer 4:22 Hos 4:1 , 6), forgetfulness (Jer 2:32 Ps 50:22 †), misapprehensions (Acts 17:23 , 29), false opinions (Isa 40:18 ), unworthy and wicked thoughts of him (Ps 50:21 ); bold and curious searching into his secrets (Deut 29:29 ); all profaneness (Tit 1:16 Heb 12:16 ), hatred of God (Rom 1:30 ); self-love (2 Tim 3:2 ), self-seeking (Phil 2:21 ), and all other inordinate and immoderate setting of our mind, will, or affections upon other things, and taking them off from him in whole or in part (1 Jhn 2:15-16 1 Sam 2:29 Col 3:2 , 5); vain credulity (1 Jhn 4:1 ), unbelief (Deut 9:6 , 23-24 [?][or Deut 30:6 , 14?]; Heb 3:12 ), heresy (Gal 5:20 Tit 3:10 ), misbelieve (Acts 26:9 ), distrust (Ps 78:22 ), despair (Gen 4:13 ), incorrigibleness (Jer 5:3 ), and insensibleness under judgments (Isa 42:25 ), hardness of heart (Rom 2:5 ), pride (Jer 13:15 ), presumption (Ps 19:13 ), carnal security (Zeph 1:12 ), tempting of God (Matt 4:7 ); using unlawful means (Rom 3:8 ), and trusting in unlawful means (Jer 17:5 ): carnal delights and joys (2 Tim 3:4 ); corrupt, blind, and indiscreet zeal (Gal 4:17 John 16:2 Rom 10:2 Luke 9:54-55 ); lukewarmness (Rev 3:16 ), and deadness in the things of God (Rev 3:1 ); estranging ourselves, and apostatizing from God (Ezek 14:5 Isa 1:4-5 ); praying, or giving any religious worship, to saints, angels, or any other creatures (Rom 10:13-14 Hos 4:12 Acts 10:25-26 Rev 19:10 Matt 4:10 Col 2:18 Rom 1:25 ); all compacts and consulting with the devil (Lev 20:6 1 Sam 28:7 , 11; 1 Chr 10:13-14 ), and hearkening to his suggestions (Acts 5:3 ); making men the lords of our faith and conscience (2 Cor 1:24 Matt 23:9 ); slighting and despising God and his commands (Deut 32:15 2 Sam 12:9 Prov 13:13 ); resisting and grieving of his Spirit (Acts 7:51 Eph 4:30 ), discontent and impatience at his dispensations, charging him foolishly for the evils he inflicts on us (Ps 73:2-3 , 14-15, 22; Jb 1:22 ); and ascribing the praise of any good we either are, have, or can do, to fortune (1 Sam 6:7-9 Luke 12:19 †), idols (Dan 5:23 ), ourselves (Deut 8:17 Dan 4:30 ), or any other creature (Hab 1:16 ).
Q. 106. What are we specially taught by these words [before me] in the first commandment (Exod 20:3 )?
A. These words [before me] or before my face, in the first commandment, teach us, that God, who seeth all things, taketh special notice of, and is much displeased with, the sin of having any other God: that so it may be an argument to dissuade from it, and to aggravate it as a most impudent provocation (Deut 30:17-18 †; Ezek 8:5-18 Ps 44:20-21 ): as also to persuade us to do as in his sight, whatever we do in his service (1 Chr 28:9 ).
Q. 107. Which is the second commandment?
A. The second commandment is, Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth. Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the Lord thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me; and shewing mercy unto thousands of them that love me, and keep my commandments (Exod 20:4-6 Deut 5:8-10 †).
Q. 108. What are the duties required in the second commandment?
A. The duties required in the second commandment are, the receiving, observing, and keeping pure and entire, all such religious worship and ordinances as God hath instituted in his word (Deut 12:32 †; 32:46–47; Matt 28:20 Acts 2:42 1 Tim 6:13-14 ); particularly prayer and thanksgiving in the name of Christ (Phil 4:6 Eph 5:20 ); the reading, preaching, and hearing of the word (Deut 17:18-19 Acts 15:21 2 Tim 4:2 Jas 1:21-22 Acts 10:33 ); the administration and receiving of the sacraments (Matt 28:19 1 Cor 11:23-30 ); church government and discipline (Matt 18:15-17 16:19; 1 Cor 5 12:28); the ministry and maintenance thereof (Eph 4:11-12 1 Tim 5:17-18 1 Cor 9:7-15 ); religious fasting (Joel 2:12-13 1 Cor 7:5 [TR]); swearing by the name of God (Deut 6:13 ), and vowing unto him (Isa 19:21 Ps 76:11 116:14, 18†): as also the disapproving, detesting, opposing, all false worship (Acts 17:16-17 Ps 16:4 ); and, according to each one’s place and calling, removing it, and all monuments of idolatry (Deut 7:5 Isa 30:22 ).
Q. 109. What are the sins forbidden in the second commandment?
A. The sins forbidden in the second commandment are, all devising (Num 15:39 ), counseling (Deut 13:6-8 ), commanding (Hos 5:11 Mic 6:16 ), using (1 Kgs 11:33 †; 12:33), and any wise approving, any religious worship not instituted by God himself (Deut 12:30-32 Lev 10:1-2 †; Jer 19:5 †); [tolerating a false religion (Deut 13:6-12 Zech 13:2-3 Rev 2:2 , 14-15, 20; 17:12, 16-17);] the making any representation of God, of all or of any of the three persons either inwardly in our mind, or outwardly in any kind of image or likeness of any creature whatsoever (Deut 4:15-19 Acts 17:29 Rom 1:21-23 , 25); all worshipping of it (Dan 3:18 Gal 4:8 ), or God in it or by it (Exod 32:5 ); the making of any representation of feigned deities (Exod 32:8 ), and all worship of them, or service belonging to them (1 Kgs 18:26 , 28; Isa 65:11 ); all superstitious devices (Acts 17:22 Col 2:21-23 ), corrupting the worship of God (Mal 1:7-8 , 14), adding to it, or taking from it (Deut 4:2 ), whether invented and taken up of ourselves (Ps 106:39 ), or received by tradition from others (Matt 15:9 ), though under the title of antiquity (1 Pet 1:18 ), custom (Jer 44:17 ), devotion (Isa 65:3-5 Gal 1:13-14 ), good intent, or any other pretence whatsoever (1 Sam 13:11-12 15:21); simony (Acts 8:18 ); sacrilege (Rom 2:22 Mal 3:8 ); all neglect (Exod 4:24-26 ), contempt (Matt 22:5 Mal 1:7 , 13), hindering (Matt 23:13 ), and opposing the worship and ordinances which God hath appointed (Acts 13:44-45 1 Thess 2:15-16 ).
Q. 110. What are the reasons annexed to the second commandment, the more to enforce it?
A. The reasons annexed to the second commandment, the more to enforce it, contained in these words, For I the Lord thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me; and shewing mercy unto thousands of them that love me, and keep my commandments (Exod 20:5-6 ); are, besides God’s sovereignty over us, and propriety in us (Ps 45:11 Rev 15:3-4 Ps 95:2-3 , 6-7†; Exod 19:5 †; Isa 54:5 †), his fervent zeal for his own worship (Exod 34:13-14 ), and his revengeful indignation against all false worship, as being a spiritual whoredom (1 Cor 10:20-22 Jer 7:18-20 Ezek 16:26-27 Deut 32:16-20 ); accounting the breakers of this commandment such as hate him, and threatening to punish them unto divers generations (Hos 2:2-4 ); and esteeming the observers of it such as love him and keep his commandments, and promising mercy to them unto many generations (Deut 5:29 ).
Q. 111. Which is the third commandment?
A. The third commandment is, Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain: for the Lord will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain (Exod 20:7 Deut 5:11 †).
Q. 112. What is required in the third commandment?
A. The third commandment requires, That the name of God, his titles, attributes (Matt 6:9 Deut 28:58 1 Chr 29:10-13 †; Ps 29:2 68:4; Rev 15:3-4 ), ordinances (Mal 1:14 2:4†; Eccl 5:1 Luke 1:6 †), the word (Ps 138:2 ), sacraments (1 Cor 11:24-25 , 28-29), prayer (1 Tim 2:8 ), oaths (Jer 4:2 ), vows (Eccl 5:2 , 4-6), lots (Acts 1:24 , 26), his works (Jb 36:24 ), and whatsoever else there is whereby he makes himself known, be holily and reverently used in thought (Mal 3:16 ), meditation (Ps 8 ), word (Col 3:17 Ps 105:2 , 5), and writing (Ps 102:18 ); by an holy profession (1 Pet 3:15 Mic 4:5 ), and answerable conversation (Phil 1:27 ), to the glory of God (1 Cor 10:31 ), and to the good of ourselves (Jer 32:39 ), and others (1 Pet 2:12 ).
Q. 113. What are the sins forbidden in the third commandment?
A. The sins forbidden in the third commandment are, the not using of God’s name as is required (Mal 2:2 ); and the abuse of it in an ignorant (Acts 17:23 ), vain (Prov 30:9 ), irreverent, profane (Mal 1:6-7 , 12; 3:14), superstitious (1 Sam 4:3-5 Jer 7:4 , 9-10, 14, 31; Col 2:20-22 ) or wicked mentioning or otherwise using his titles, attributes (2 Kgs 18:30 , 35; Exod 5:2 Ps 139:20 ), ordinances (Ps 50:16-17 ), or works (Isa 5:12 ), by blasphemy (2 Kgs 19:22 Lev 24:11 ), perjury (Zech 5:4 8:17); all sinful cursings (1 Sam 17:43 2 Sam 16:5 Rom 12:14 †), oaths (Jer 5:7 23:10), vows (Deut 23:18 Acts 23:12 , 14), and lots (Esth 3:7 9:24; Ps 22:18 ); violating of our oaths and vows, if lawful (Ps 24:4 Ezek 17:16 , 18-19) and fulfilling them, if of things unlawful (Mark 6:26 1 Sam 25:22 , 32-34); murmuring and quarrelling at (Rom 9:14 , 19-20), curious prying into (Deut 29:29 ), and misapplying of God’s decrees (Rom 3:5 , 7; 6:1) and providences (Eccl 8:11 9:3; Ps 39 73:12-13†); misinterpreting (Matt 5:21-48 ), misapplying (Ezek 13:22 ), or any way perverting the word, or any part of it (2 Pet 3:16 Matt 22:24-31 ), to profane jests (Isa 22:13 Jer 23:34 , 36, 38), curious or unprofitable questions, vain janglings, or the maintaining of false doctrines (1 Tim 1:4 , 6-7; 6:4-5, 20; 2 Tim 2:14 Tit 3:9 ); abusing it, the creatures, or any thing contained under the name of God, to charms (Deut 18:10-14 Acts 19:13 ), or sinful lusts and practices (2 Tim 4:3-4 Rom 13:13-14 1 Kgs 21:9-10 Jud 1:4 ); the maligning (Acts 13:45 1 Jhn 3:12 ), scorning (Ps 1:1 2 Pet 3:3 ), reviling (1 Pet 4:4 ), or any wise opposing God’s truth, grace, and ways (Acts 13:45-46 , 50; 4:18; 19:9; 1 Thess 2:16 Heb 10:29 ); making profession of religion in hypocrisy, or for sinister ends (2 Tim 3:5 Matt 23:14 6:1-2, 5, 16); being ashamed of it (Mark 8:38 ), or a shame to it, but unconformable (Ps 73:14-15 ), unwise (1 Cor 6:5-6 Eph 5:15-17 ), unfruitful (Isa 5:4 2 Pet 1:8-9 ), and offensive walking (Rom 2:23-24 ), or backsliding from it (Gal 3:1 , 3; Heb 6:6 ).
Q. 114. What reasons are annexed to the third commandment?
A. The reasons annexed to the third commandment, in these word, [The Lord thy God,] and, [For the Lord will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain (Exod 20:7 ),] are, because he is the Lord and our God, therefore his name is not to be profaned, or any way abused by us (Lev 19:12 ); especially because he will be so far from acquitting and sparing the transgressors of this commandment, as that he will not suffer them to escape his righteous judgment (Ezek 36:21-23 Deut 28:58-59 Zech 5:2-4 ), albeit many such escape the censures and punishments of men (1 Sam 2:12 , 17, 22, 24; 2:29†; 3:13).
Q. 115. Which is the fourth commandment?
A. The fourth commandment is, Remember the sabbath-day, to keep it holy. Six days shalt thou labour, and do all thy work; but the seventh day is the sabbath of the Lord thy God: in it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy man-servant, nor thy maid-servant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates. For in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the Lord blessed the sabbath-day, and hallowed it (Exod 20:8-11 Deut 5:12-15 †).
Q. 116. What is required in the fourth commandment?
A. The fourth commandment requireth of all men the sanctifying or keeping holy to God such set times as he hath appointed in his word, expressly one whole day in seven; which was the seventh from the beginning of the world to the resurrection of Christ, and the first day of the week ever since, and so to continue to the end of the world; which is the Christian sabbath (Deut 5:12-14 Gen 2:2-3 1 Cor 16:1-2 Acts 20:7 John 20:19-27 †; Matt 5:17-18 Isa 56:2 , 4, 6-7), and in the New Testament called The Lord’s day (Rev 1:10 ).
Q. 117. How is the sabbath or the Lord’s day to be sanctified?
A. The sabbath or Lord’s day is to be sanctified by an holy resting all the day (Exod 20:8 , 10), not only from such works as are at all times sinful, but even from such worldly employments and recreations as are on other days lawful (Exod 16:25-28 Neh 13:15-19 , 21-22; Jer 17:21-22 ); and making it our delight to spend the whole time (except so much of it as is to be taken up in works of necessity and mercy [Matt 12:1-13 ]) in the public and private exercises of God’s worship (Isa 58:13 Luke 4:16 Acts 20:7 1 Cor 16:1-2 Ps 92 [title]; Isa 66:23 Lev 23:3 ): and, to that end, we are to prepare our hearts, and with such foresight, diligence, and moderation, to dispose and seasonably dispatch our worldly business, that we may be the more free and fit for the duties of that day (Exod 20:8 Luke 23:54 , 56; Exod 16:22 , 25-26, 29; Neh 13:19 ).
Q. 118. Why is the charge of keeping the sabbath more specially directed to governors of families, and other superiors?
A. The charge of keeping the sabbath is more specially directed to governors of families, and other superiors, because they are bound not only to keep it themselves, but to see that it be observed by all those that are under their charge; and because they are prone ofttimes to hinder them by employments of their own (Exod 20:10 Josh 24:15 Neh 13:15 , 17; Jer 17:20-22 Exod 23:12 16:22, 25, 29†).
Q. 119. What are the sins forbidden in the fourth commandment?
A. The sins forbidden in the fourth commandment are, all omissions of the duties required (Ezek 22:26 ), all careless, negligent, and unprofitable performing of them, and being weary of them (Acts 20:7 , 9; Ezek 33:30-32 Amos 8:5 Mal 1:13 ); all profaning the day by idleness, and doing that which is in itself sinful (Ezek 23:38 ); and by all needless works, words, and thoughts, about our worldly employments and recreations (Jer 17:24 , 27; Isa 58:13 ).
Q. 120. What are the reasons annexed to the fourth commandment, the more to enforce it?
A. The reasons annexed to the fourth commandment, the more to enforce it, are taken from the equity of it, God allowing us six days of seven for our own affairs, and reserving but one for himself, in these words, Six days shalt thou labour, and do all thy work (Exod 20:9 ): from God’s challenging a special propriety in that day, The seventh day is the sabbath of the Lord thy God (Exod 20:10 ): from the example of God, who in six days made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: and from that blessing which God put upon that day, not only in sanctifying it to be a day for his service, but in ordaining it to be a means of blessing to us in our sanctifying it; Wherefore the Lord blessed the sabbath-day, and hallowed it (Exod 20:11 ).
Q. 121. Why is the word Remember set in the beginning of the fourth commandment?
A. The word Remember is set in the beginning of the fourth commandment (Exod 20:8 ), partly, because of the great benefit of remembering it, we being thereby helped in our preparation to keep it (Exod 16:23 Luke 23:54 , 56; Mark 15:42 Neh 13:19 ), and, in keeping it, better to keep all the rest of the commandments (Ps 92 [title], 13–14; Ezek 20:12 , 19-20), and to continue a thankful remembrance of the two great benefits of creation and redemption, which contain a short abridgment of religion (Gen 2:2-3 Ps 118:22 , 24; Acts 4:10-11 Heb 4:9 †; Rev 1:10 ); and partly, because we are very ready to forget it (Ezek 22:26 ), for that there is less light of nature for it (Neh 9:14 ), and yet it restraineth our natural liberty in things at other times lawful (Exod 34:21 ); that it cometh but once in seven days, and many worldly businesses come between, and too often take off our minds from thinking of it, either to prepare for it, or to sanctify it (Exod 20:9 †; Deut 5:14-15 Amos 8:5 ); and that Satan with his instruments much labour to blot out the glory, and even the memory of it, to bring in all irreligion and impiety (Lam 1:7 Jer 17:21-23 Neh 13:15-23 ).
Q. 122. What is the sum of the six commandments which contain our duty to man?
A. The sum of the six commandments which contain our duty to man, is, to love our neighbour as ourselves (Matt 22:39 ), and to do to others what we would have them to do to us (Matt 7:12 ).
Q. 123. Which is the fifth commandment?
A. The fifth commandment is, Honour thy father and thy mother: that thy days may be long upon the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee (Exod 20:12 Deut 5:16 †).
Q. 124. Who are meant by father and mother in the fifth commandment?
A. By father and mother, in the fifth commandment, are meant, not only natural parents (Prov 23:22 , 25; Eph 6:1-2 ), but all superiors in age (1 Tim 5:1-2 ) and gifts (Gen 4:20-22 45:8); and especially such as, by God’s ordinance, are over us in place of authority, whether in family (2 Kgs 5:13 ), church (2 Kgs 2:12 13:14; Gal 4:19 ), or commonwealth (Isa 49:23 ).
Q. 125. Why are superiors styled Father and Mother ?
A. Superiors are styled Father and Mother, both to teach them in all duties toward their inferiors, like natural parents, to express love and tenderness to them, according to their several relations (Eph 6:4 2 Cor 12:14 1 Thess 2:7-8 , 11; Num 11:11-12 ); and to work inferiors to a greater willingness and cheerfulness in performing their duties to their superiors, as to their parents (1 Cor 4:14-16 2 Kgs 5:13 ).
Q. 126. What is the general scope of the fifth commandment?
A. The general scope of the fifth commandment is, the performance of those duties which we mutually owe in our several relations, as inferiors, superiors, or equals (Eph 5:21 1 Pet 2:17 Rom 12:10 13:1†; Eph 5:22 , 24†; 6:1, 4–5, 9†).
Q. 127. What is the honour that inferiors owe to their superiors?
A. The honour which inferiors owe to their superiors is, all due reverence in heart (Mal 1:6 Lev 19:3 ), word (Prov 31:28 1 Pet 3:6 ), and behaviour (Lev 19:32 1 Kgs 2:19 ); prayer and thanksgiving for them (1 Tim 2:1-2 ); imitation of their virtues and graces (Heb 13:7 Phil 3:17 ); willing obedience to their lawful commands and counsels (Eph 6:1-2 , 5-7; 1 Pet 2:13-14 Rom 13:1-5 Heb 13:17 Prov 4:3-4 23:22; Exod 18:19 , 24); due submission to their corrections (Heb 12:9 1 Pet 2:18-20 ); fidelity to (Tit 2:9-10 ), defence (1 Sam 26:15-16 2 Sam 18:3 Esth 6:2 ), and maintenance of their persons and authority, according to their several ranks, and the nature of their places (Matt 22:21 Rom 13:6-7 1 Tim 5:17-18 Gal 6:6 Gen 45:11 47:12); bearing with their infirmities, and covering them in love (1 Pet 2:18 Prov 23:22 Gen 9:23 ), that so they may be an honour to them and to their government (Ps 127:3-5 Prov 31:23 ).
Q. 128. What are the sins of inferiors against their superiors?
A. The sins of inferiors against their superiors are, all neglect of the duties required toward them (Matt 15:4-6 Rom 13:8 †); envying at (Num 11:28-29 ), contempt of (1 Sam 8:7 Isa 3:5 ), and rebellion (2 Sam 15:1-12 ) against, their persons (Exod 21:15 ) and places (1 Sam 10:27 ), in their lawful counsels (1 Sam 2:25 ), commands, and corrections (Deut 21:18-21 ); cursing, mocking (Prov 30:11 , 17), and all such refractory and scandalous carriage, as proves a shame and dishonour to them and their government (Prov 19:26 ).
Q. 129. What is required of superiors towards their inferiors?
A. It is required of superiors, according to that power they receive from God, and that relation wherein they stand, to love (Col 3:19 Tit 2:4 ), pray for (1 Sam 12:23 Jb 1:5 ), and bless their inferiors (1 Kgs 8:55-56 Heb 7:7 Gen 49:28 ); to instruct (Deut 6:6-7 ), counsel, and admonish them (Eph 6:4 ); countenancing (1 Pet 3:7 ), commending (1 Pet 2:14 Rom 13:3 ), and rewarding such as do well (Esth 6:3 ); and discountenancing (Rom 13:3-4 ), reproving, and chastising such as do ill (Prov 29:15 Rom 13:4 †; 1 Pet 2:14 ); protecting (Jb 29:12-17 Isa 1:10 , 17), and providing for them all things necessary for soul (Eph 6:4 ) and body (1 Tim 5:8 ): and by grave, wise, holy, and exemplary carriage, to procure glory to God (1 Tim 4:12 Tit 2:3-5 ), honour to themselves (1 Kgs 3:28 ), and so to preserve that authority which God hath put upon them (Tit 2:15 ).
Q. 130. What are the sins of superiors?
A. The sins of superiors are, besides the neglect of the duties required of them (Ezek 34:2-4 ), and inordinate seeking of themselves (Phil 2:21 ), their own glory (John 5:44 7:18), ease, profit, or pleasure (Isa 56:10-11 Deut 17:17 ); commanding things unlawful (Dan 3:4-6 Acts 4:17-18 ), or not in the power of inferiors to perform (Exod 5:10-18 Matt 23:2 , 4); counseling (Matt 14:8 Mark 6:24 ), encouraging (2 Sam 13:28 Jer 5:30-31 †), or favouring them in that which is evil (Judg 20:13-14 †; 1 Sam 3:13 Jer 6:13-14 †; Ezek 13:9-10 †); dissuading, discouraging, or discountenancing them in that which is good (John 7:46-49 9:28†; Col 3:21 Exod 5:17 ); correcting them unduly (1 Pet 2:18-20 Heb 12:10 Deut 25:3 ); careless exposing, or leaving them to wrong, temptation, and danger (Gen 38:11 , 26; Lev 19:29 †; 1 Sam 23:15-17 †; Isa 58:7 †; Acts 18:17 ); provoking them to wrath (Eph 6:4 ); or any way dishonouring themselves, or lessening their authority, by an unjust, indiscreet, rigorous, or remiss behaviour (Gen 9:21 1 Kgs 12:13-16 1:6; 1 Sam 2:29-31 3:13†).
Q. 131. What are the duties of equals?
A. The duties of equals are, to regard the dignity and worth of each other (1 Pet 2:17 ), in giving honour to go one before another (Rom 12:10 Phil 2:3 †); and to rejoice in each others gifts and advancement, as their own (Rom 12:15-16 Phil 2:3-4 ).
Q. 132. What are the sins of equals?
A. The sins of equals are, besides the neglect of the duties required (Rom 13:8 ), the undervaluing of the worth (Prov 14:21 †; Isa 65:5 †; 2 Tim 3:3 ), envying the gifts (Acts 7:9 Gal 5:26 ), grieving at the advancement or prosperity one of another (1 Jhn 3:12 †; Matt 20:15 †; Num 12:2 Esth 6:12-13 Luke 15:28-29 †); and usurping pre-eminence one over another (Matt 20:25-27 †; 3 John 9 Luke 22:24 ).
Q. 133. What is the reason annexed to the fifth commandment, the more to enforce it?
A. The reason annexed to the fifth commandment, in these words, That thy days may be long upon the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee (Exod 20:12 ), is an express promise of long life and prosperity, as far as it shall serve for God’s glory and their own good, to all such as keep this commandment (Deut 5:16 1 Kgs 8:25 Eph 6:2-3 ).
Q. 135. What are the duties required in the sixth commandment?
A. The duties required in the sixth commandment are, all careful studies, and lawful endeavours, to preserve the life of ourselves (Matt 10:23 †; Eph 5:28-29 ) and others (1 Kgs 18:4 Jb 29:13 †) by resisting all thoughts and purposes (1 Sam 19:4-5 †; Jer 26:15-16 Acts 23:12 , 16-17, 21, 27), subduing all passions (Eph 4:26-27 ), and avoiding all occasions (Prov 22:24-25 †; 1 Sam 25:32-33 †; 2 Sam 2:22 Deut 22:8 ), temptations (Matt 4:6-7 Prov 1:10-11 , 15-16), and practices, which tend to the unjust taking away the life of any (1 Sam 24:12 26:9-11; 1 Kgs 21:9-10 , 19†; Gen 37:21-22 ); by just defence thereof against violence (Ps 82:4 Prov 24:11-12 1 Sam 14:45 Jer 38:7-13 †), patient bearing of the hand of God (2 Sam 16:10-12 †; Luke 21:19 †; Jas 5:7-11 Heb 12:9 ), quietness of mind (1 Thess 4:11 1 Pet 3:4 Ps 37:8-11 ), cheerfulness of spirit (Prov 17:22 1 Thess 5:16 †); a sober use of meat (Prov 23:20 †; Prov 25:16 , 27), drink (Prov 23:29-30 †; Eccl 10:17 †; 1 Tim 5:23 ), physick (Matt 9:12 †; Isa 38:21 ), sleep (Eccl 2:23 †; Ps 127:2 ), labour (Eccl 5:12 2 Thess 3:10 , 12; Prov 16:26 ), and recreations (Eccl 3:4 , 11; Mark 6:31 †); by charitable thoughts (1 Sam 19:4-5 22:13-14; 1 Cor 13:4-5 †), love (Rom 13:10 Prov 10:12 †), compassion (Zech 7:9 †; Luke 10:33-35 ), meekness, gentleness, kindness (Col 3:12-13 ); peaceable (Rom 12:18 †; Jas 3:17 ), mild and courteous speeches and behaviour (1 Pet 3:8-11 Prov 15:1 Judg 8:1-3 1 Cor 4:12-13 †); forbearance, readiness to be reconciled, patient bearing and forgiving of injuries, and requiting good for evil (Matt 5:24 Eph 4:2 , 32; Col 3:13 †; 1 Pet 2:20 †; Rom 12:17 , 20-21); comforting and succouring the distressed and protecting and defending the innocent (1 Thess 5:14 Jb 31:19-20 Isa 58:7 †; Matt 25:35-36 Prov 31:8-9 ).
Q. 136. What are the sins forbidden in the sixth commandment?
A. The sins forbidden in the sixth commandment are, all taking away the life of ourselves (Acts 16:28 Prov 1:18 †), or of others (Gen 9:6 ), except in case of publick justice (Exod 21:14 †; Num 35:31 , 33; Rom 13:4 †), lawful war (Jer 48:10 Deut 20 Heb 11:32-34 †), or necessary defence (Exod 22:2-3 ); the neglecting or withdrawing the lawful and necessary means of preservation of life (Matt 25:42-43 Jas 2:15-16 Eccl 6:1-2 ); sinful anger (Matt 5:22 ), hatred (1 Jhn 3:15 Lev 19:17 Prov 10:12 †), envy (Jb 5:2 †; Prov 14:30 ), desire of revenge (Rom 12:19 ); all excessive passions (Eph 4:31 Jas 4:1 †), distracting cares (Jb 21:25 †; Matt 6:31 , 34); immoderate use of meat, drink (Luke 21:34 Rom 13:13 ), labour (Eccl 4:8 †; 12:12; 2:22–23), and recreations (Eccl 11:9 †; Isa 5:12 ); provoking words (Prov 15:1 12:18), oppression (Isa 3:15 †;