Jan 28, 2010

Human Merit in the Duty Faith Tribes from "The Earthen Vessel"

Human Merit in the Duty Faith Tribes

The quote below is from an article in "The earthen vessel and Christian record & review, Volumes 15-21". It can be viewed Here. [Note: the article begins on pg. 26]

' It was the same love that spread the feast, That sweetly forced us in.'

Well, we were staggered just now ; but here we are thoroughly beaten ; for whatever Mr. Foster can have to do with the doctrine of forced to come in, we cannot make out. This looks to us, more like mere pretension than anything else. It is true, Mr. Foster tells us, that we are helpless; but then he cannot mean this—because he says, 'he holds no yea and nay preachments;' so that his telling us that it is all of grace—that we cannot help ourselves; that we are 'forced in;' and that if we feel our need of the Saviour, this he gives us. Mr. Foster, of course, does not seriously mean one word of all this; these are expressions he has picked up from the Bible and Hymn books, and from his minister, not that he means a single word of it; for he protests against 'yea and nay,' so that we must not believe that he really means that it is all of grace. We must not do him such injustice, as to believe that he really means what he says, when he tells us, that we are compelled to come in; for were we to believe that, he really means it is all by grace, we should make his preachments to be yea and nay; for in one part of his creed, (and in that part too which lies nearest his heart, he tells us that 'it was their own fault if they do not go to heaven;' so you see, if these lost men had done their part, they would have been saved ; and as Mr Foster reckons himself saved, he of course has done and is doing his part. So that his saying it is all of grace is a mere delusion, nor would all his protestations against salvation partly, at least by works, have with us the weight of a straw : human merit, however much they may labor to disguise and hide it, is the quint-essence of the doctrines held by the whole duty-faith tribe. And although it is he who believeth the truth in the love of it, that gives hereby evidence that he is a sound man, and that he that believeth not the truth in the love of it, does thereby give proof that he is in a state of nature ; and that as one is not saved for believing, so the other is not damned for not believing unto eternal salvation; but is lost, as a fallen sinner in Adam, and condemned also for whatever personal sins he has committed, we would not, therefore, do Mr. Foster the injustice to suppose for one moment, that he believes that faith is the gift of God ; he and all his tribe, may say so, but we do not happen to possess ability to believe them: we believe the whole duty-faith legion to be nothing but Arminians in heart; and of all the delusive doctrines in the world, we believe that there are none more deceptive, more feasible, more entangling, to the unwary, or more loved by the flesh, than this suicidal duty-faith contrivance; and the wise as well as the foolish, twin one half of them sleeping while the enemy is sowing tares among the wheat, and thousands of professors love to have it so. [Mr. John Foster's second communication is to hand: it shall be inserted. We must not exclude such controversies as tend to lay open more fully the revealed word and will of God; although only a earner each month can be spared.—ED.]

Duty-faith Expositions

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