A VIEW Of that Part of the late Considerations Addrest to H. H. about the TRINITY. Which concerns the Sober Enquiry, On that Subject. In a Letter to the former Friend.

LONDON, Printed for Tho. Parkhurst, at the Bible and three Crowns, at the lower-end of Cheapside, 1695.

A View of the late CONSIDE­RATIONS addrest to H. H. about the TRINITY.

YOU see, Sir, I make no haste to tell you my Thoughts of what hath been publish'd since my last to you, against my Sentiments touching the H. Trinity. I saw the Matter less required my Time and Thoughts, than my other Affairs: And so little, that I was almost indifferent whether I took any notice thereof or no. There is really nothing of Argu­ment in what I have seen, but what I had suggested before, and objected to my self, in those very Discourses of mine, now animadverted on; which not ha­ving prevented, with me, the Opinion [Page 4] I am of, can as little alter it, and should as little any Man's else.

But a little leasure, as it can, without extortion, be gained from other occasions, I do not much grudg to bestow on this.

I find my self concern'd in the late Considerations on the Explications of the Doctrine of the Trinity—in a Letter to H. H.

The Author is pleas'd to give me the honour of a Name, a lank, unvocal one. It is so contrived, that one may easily guess whom he means; but the reason of his doing so I cannot guess. Is it because he knew himself, what he would have others believe?

But I suppose he as well knew his own Name. If he knew not the former, he ran the hazard of injuring either the supposed Author, or the true, or both. I could, I believe, make as shrewd a guess at his Name, and express it as plainly. But I think it not civil to do so; because I apprehend he hath some [Page 5] reason to conceal it, whereof I think he hath a Right to be the Judg. But I will not prescribe to him Rules of Civi­lity, of which that he is a great Judg, I will not allow my self to doubt.

Yet I will not suppose him to have so very diminishing Thoughts of our Sa­viour, as not to acknowledg and reve­rence the Authority of that great Rule of his, which he knows gain'd Reverence with some who called not themselves Christians, [Whatsoever you would that Men should do to you—&c.] Nor can divine what greater reason he should have to hide his own Name, than to expose mine, or make the Person he indigitates, be thought the Author of the Discourse he intended to expose. Since no Man can imagine how, as the Christian World is constituted, any one can be more ob­noxious for denying three Persons, than for asserting three Gods: Which latter his impotent attempt aims to make that Author do.

[Page 6] For his Censures of that Author's stile, and difficulty to be understood, they of­fend me not. But so I have known some pretend Deafness, to what they were unwilling to hear. There is in­deed one place Sob. Enq. p. 24. in the end of Sect. 8. where must should have been left out, upon the adding after­wards of can; that might give one some trouble. In which yet, the suppo­sal of a (not unusual) Asyndeton, would, without the help of Magick, have re­liev'd a considering Reader.

And for his Complements, as they do me no real good, so, I thank God, they hurt me not. I dwell at Home, and better know my own Furniture, than another can.

For himself, I discern, and readily ac­knowledg, in him, those excellent Ac­complishments, for which I most hear­tily wish him an Advocate in a better Cause, without Despair he will yet prove so; when I take notice of some Passages which look like Indications of [Page 7] a serious temper of Mind, as of choosing God, and the honour of his Name, for our Portion and Design; and that he lives in vain, who knows not his Maker, and his God, with the like.

But on the other hand, I was as hear­tily sorry to meet with an expression of so different a strain, on so awful a Sub­ject, of making a Coat for the Moon.

That Precept which Josephus inserts among those given the Jews, [...]. Lib. 4. Jud. Antiq. doth for the reason it hath in it, abstracting from its Authority, de­serve to be considered. It seems to import a decency to the rest of Mankind, whose notions of a Deity did not argue them sunk into the lowest de­grees of Sottishness and Stupidity. Good Sir, what needed (think you) so adventurous Boldness, in so lubricous a Case! It gains nothing to a Man's Cause either of Strength or Reputation with wise and good Men. A sound Argu­ment will be as sound without it. Nor [Page 8] should I much value having them on my side, whom I can hope to make laugh at so hazardous a Jest. I can ne­ver indeed have any great Veneration for a morose Sourness, whatsoever affe­cted appearance it may have with it, of a simulated Sanctimony or Religious­ness; but I should think it no hardship upon me to repress that Levity, as to at­tempt dancing upon the brink of so tre­mendous a Precipice. And would al­ways express my self with suspicion, and a supposed possibility of being mis­taken, in a case wherein I find many of noted Judgment and Integrity, in the succession of several Ages, differing from me.

But go we on to the Cause it self, where he pretends,

1. First to give a View of the Sober Enquirer's Hypothesis.

2. And then to argue against it.

As to the former. He doth it, I am loth to say, with less fairness than from a Person of his (otherwise) appearing [Page 9] Ingenuity, one would expect. For he really makes me to have said more than I ever did, in divers Instances; and much less than I have expresly said; and that he cannot have so little understanding as not to know was most material to the Cause in hand.

He represents me p. 40. col. 1. saying the Persons are distinct Essences, numerical Natures, Beings, Substances; and col. 2. That I hold them to be three Spirits; when in the close of one of those Paragraphs, viz. Calm Discourse, p. 112, 113. I re­cite the Words of W. J. ‘In the Unity of the Godhead there must be no plurality or multiplicity of Substan­ces allowed:’ And do add, nor do I say that there must. And p. 39, 40. ‘I do not positively say there are three distinct Substances, Minds, or Spi­rits.’ I would ask this my learned Antagonist, have saying, and not saying, the same signification? And again, when Calm Discourse, p. 123. my words are, I will not use the Expressions, as signi­fying [Page 10] my formed Judgment, That there are three Things, Substances or Spirits in the Godhead; how could he say, I hold the three Persons to be three Spirits? Is any Man, according to the ordinary way of speaking, said to hold what is not his formed Judgment? If he only propose things whereof he doubts, to be consi­dered and discust by others, in order to the forming of it, and by gentle venti­lation to sift out Truth, it the rather ar­gues him not to hold this or that.

And I think much Service might be done to the common Interest of Religion, by such a free mutual Communication of even more doubtful Thoughts, if such Disquisitions were pursu'd with more Candour, and with less Confi­dence and prepossession of Mind, or addictedness to the Interest of any Par­ty whatsoever. If it were rather en­deavoured, to reason one another into, or out of, this or that Opinion, than either by Sophistical Collusions to cheat, or to Hector by great words, one that is [Page 11] not of my mind. Or if the Design were less to expose an Adversary, than to clear the matter in Controversy.

Besides, that if such Equanimity did more generally appear, and govern, in Transactions of this nature, it would produce a greater liberty in communi­cating our Thoughts, about some of the more vogued and fashionable Opinions, by exempting each other from the fear of ill Treatment, in the most sensible kind. It being too manifest, that the same confident insulting Genius, which makes a Man think himself competent to be a Standard to Mankind, would also make him impatient of dissent, and tempt him to do worse, than reproach one that differs from him, if it were in his power. And the Club or Fagot-Argu­ments must be expected to take place, where what he thinks rational ones, did not do the business. This only on the by.

In the mean time that there is a Trinity in the Godhead, is no matter of doubt [Page 12] with me; but only whether this be the best way of explaining and defending it. If this be not the best, or sufficient, some other will, I believe, or hath been found out by some other. Of which I have spoken my sense not only indefinitely, Calm Disc. p. 81. but particularly of the more common way; not that I did then, or have yet thought it the best, but not indefensible, p. 73, 74.

And I must now sincerely profess, That the perusal of these very Considerati­ons gives me more confidence about this Hypothesis, than I allowed my self be­fore; finding that the very sagacious Au­thor of them, of whose Abilities and Industry together, I really have that O­pinion, as to count him the most likely to confute it of all the modern Antitrinita­rians, hath no other way to deal with it, than first, both partially and invidiously to represent it; and then, rather to trifle than argue against it. He first paints it out in false and ugly Colours, before he comes to reasoning. And then, when [Page 13] he should reason, he says nothing that hath so much as a colour. It seems to me an Argument of a suspected ill Cause on his side, that he thought it needful to pre­possess the Reader with the imagination of I know not (and I believe he knows not) what gross Ideas, as he romances, belonging to this Hypothesis. Because from those words, Prov. 8. Then was I by him, as one brought up with him, and daily his Delight; the Author speaks of the delicious Society, which these words inti­mate, the Eternal Wisdom, and the prime Author and Parent of all things, to have each with other.

For my part, I have little doubt but this ingenious Writer is so well acquaint­ed with the gust and relish of intelle­ctual Delight, that he chose to expose his Adversary by using that odd Expres­sion of gross Ideas so causlesly, in accom­modation only to the Genius of some other Men, whom he thought fit to humour, rather than his own. Nor can he be so little acquainted with the Paganish Theo­logy, [Page 14] as not to apprehend a vast disagree­ment between this and that, and a much greater Agreement between the Paganish Notion of the Deity, and his own.

For the Questions which he supposes me to put, and makes me answer as he thinks fit, by (misapplied) Passages of that Discourse, I hope it will appear they were either prevented, or answer­ed at another rate.

At length he says, The Butt-end of this Hypothesis, &c.

I like not that Phrase the worse for the Author's sake, of whom it seems bor­rowed, whose Memory greater things will make live, when we are forgot.

But let him proceed—The Butt-end of this Hypothesis is the true strength of it. But that true strength he hath either had the hap not to observe, or taken the care not to represent, i. e. from what is so often inculcated in that Discourse, the necessary existence of two Hypostases of and in the first, and of an omnimodous simplicity ground­lesly supposed in the Divine Being, he [Page 15] hath kept himself at a wary cautious di­stance, when he might apprehend there was its strength. Therefore I cannot al­so but observe, that as he hath mark'd this Hypothesis, with (most undue) ill Characters; so he hath maimed it too, of what was most considerable belonging to it, that he might expose it by the for­mer means, so as to make it need much de­fence; and that by the latter, it might seem quite destitute of any defence at all.

And now when (not without some untoward Disfigurations) it hath thus far 'scap'd his hands, and is (in none of the best shapes) set up only to be beaten down; The Argument he first attacks it with is the inartificial one of Authority. And yet his Argument from this Topick, is only negative, that the Opinion he would confute wants Authority, ‘That the En­quirer was the first that ever dreamt of it. And that no learned Divine of any Perswasion will subscribe to it:’ q. d. 'Tis false, and impossible to [Page 16] be true; the Enquirer only proposing what he offer'd, as possible for ought we know, is not otherwise oppos'd than by asserting it to be impossible. This therefore he must say, or he saith no­thing to the purpose; And why now is it impossible? Because no Body said it be­fore. So, then, was every thing that any Man first said; but afterwards, by be­ing often spoken, it might, it seems, at length become true!

For any learned Divines subscribing to it, I suppose he intends that in the strict sense. And so the Enquirer never said he would subscribe it himself, other­wise than that his Judgment did more incline to it, as liable to less exception than other ways of defending the Doctrine of the Trinity, or than denying it, which he thought least defensible of all.

But now supposing one should find learned Divines of the same Mind, (and perhaps some may be found more con­fident than he) I would ask the Conside­rator, [Page 17] whether he will therefore confess a Trinity a possible thing?

If not, he deals not fairly, to put the Enquirer upon quoting Authorities to no purpose: Or that he would have them conclude him, by whom he will not be concluded himself.

He seems indeed himself to have for­got the Question (with which after­wards he charges the Enquirer) as it is set down Sober Enquiry p. 1. Whether a Tri­nity in the Godhead be a possible thing? This was the Question, not what John, or Thomas, or James such a One thought?

But while he pretends to think no bo­dy else is of the Enquirer's Mind in the particular point he is now speaking to, i. e. the Delicious Society the Divine Hypo­stases are supposed to have with each o­ther; give me leave freely to discourse this matter. I would fain know what it is, wherein he supposes the Enquirer to have overshot his Mark: Or of what makes he here so mighty a Wonder­ment▪

[Page 18] It can be but one of these two things:

Either that there are three Divine Per­sons in the Godhead really distinct; Or,

That they have (if there be) a Deli­cious Society or Conversation with each other.

Will he say the former is a singular O­pinion? Or that 'tis Novel? Was there never a real Trinitarian in the World be­fore? Doth he not, in his own express words, sort the Enquirer with one, whom he will not deny to be a learned Divine, p. 43. of these his present Considerations, col. 1. [The Author of the 28 Propositions, and Mr. H—w, as he calls the Enquirer, are honest Men, and real Trinitarians.] By which former Character he hath, I dare say, ten thousand times more gratify'd his Ambition, than by calling him learn­ed too. And I believe he will as little think this a novel Opinion, as a singular one.

Nor shall I thank him for acknow­ledging it to have been the Opinion of [Page 19] the Fathers, generally, not only Ante-Nicene and Nicene, but Post-Nicene too, for some following Ages, unto that of P. Lombard, so obvious it is to every one that will but more slightly search.

For my part, I will not except Justin Martyr himself, whom I the rather menti­on, both as he was one of the more antient of the Fathers; and as I may also call him, the Father of the Modalists; [...]. nor his Notion even about the Homoou­sian-Trinity, as he expresly stiles it.

For tho it will require more time than I now intend to bestow, to give a di­stinct account of every Passage through­out that Discourse of his, yet his Ex­pression of the [...] must not be so taken, as if it were to be torn away from its coherence, and from it self. When therefore he says the [...], the being unbegot­ten, begotten, and having proceeded, are not Names of the Essence, but ( [...]) Modes of Subsistence; he must mean they are not immediately [Page 20] Names of the Essence, but mediately they cannot but be so. For what do they modify? Not nothing. When they are said to be Modes of Subsistence, what is it that subsists? We cannot pluck a­way these Modes of Subsistence from that which subsists, and whereof they are the Modes. And what is that? You'll say the [...], the one Essence, which he had mentioned before; and that one Essence is, 'tis true, as perfectly one, as 'tis possible; for what is of it self, and what are from that, to be with each other, i. e. that they are congenerous, as the Sun and its Rays (according to that Heb. 1. 3. [...], the efful­gency of Glory) or as Mind, and (where there is nothing else but Substance) con­substantial Thought or Word. Therefore this Oneness of Essence must be taken in so large and extensive a sense, as that it may admit of these Differences. For so he afterwards plainly speaks, ‘if [...]; If the one (the Father) hath his Existence without being be­gotten, [Page 21] [...], another (the Son) by being begotten, [...], but that (the Holy Ghost) by having pro­ceeded, here it befals us to behold differen­ces ( [...]) or the things that import difference.’ There must be a sense, therefore, wherein he understood this Essence to be most truly One; and a sense wherein he also understood it to have its differences, and those too not un­important ones, as being unbegotten, and being begotten, signify no light diffe­rences.

And in what latitude of sense he un­derstood the Oneness of Essence, whereof he had before spoken, may be seen in his following Explication, when what he said he would have be ( [...]) more manifest; he makes Adam's peculiar Mode of Subsistence to be that he was [...], not begotten, but made by God's own Hand; but for them that were from him, he intimates theirs to be, that they were begotten, not made. If then you enquire concerning the same Essence that [Page 22] was common to him and them, you still find that Man is the [...], the Sub­ject, whether of formation, as to him, or of generation, as to them. And who ap­prehends not in what latitude of sense the humane Nature is One, which is com­mon to Adam, and his Posterity? Tho the Divine Nature is incomparably more One, which is common to the Father, Son, and Spirit, as we have formerly in­sisted, and shall further shew it cannot but be, in all necessary, and continually-depending Emanations.

Yet I might, if there were need, a­gain (as to this part) quote the Conside­rator to himself. For I suppose he will not disown the Considerations in 1693. in which, pag. 15. col. 1. are these words, Dr. Cudworth by a great number of very pertinent and Home-quotations, hath proved that his Explication (I mean that part of it which makes the three Persons to be so many distinct Essences, or Substances) is the Do­ctrine of the Principal, if not of all the Fa­thers, as well as of the Platonists. And [Page 23] 'tis added, and I (for my own part) do grant it.

Upon the whole then, I reckon that as to this first part, we stand clear not only to the rest of the World, but with this Author himself, that to be a real Tri­nitarian is not so unheard-of a thing, or what no learned Divine of any Perswa­sion ever dreamt of before the Enquirer. But now for the

Second Part. The Delicious Society sup­posed to be between (or rather among) the three Persons. Is this a Dream! And so strange a One! Why, good Sir! Can you suppose three Persons, i. e. three intelle­ctual Subsistences, perfectly Wise, Holy, and Good, co-existing with, inexisting in one another, to have no Society? Or that Society not to be delicious? He says, How can it be? I say, how can it but be? Herein I am sure the Enquirer hath far more Company than in the for­mer. For whether the three Persons have all the same numerical Essence, or three di­stinct; all agree they most delightfully [Page 24] converse. Will he pretend never to have read any that make Love (as it were intercurrent between the two first) the Character of the third? In short; Is it the Thing he quarrels with as singular, or the Word? At the Thing, supposing three Persons, he can have no Quarrel, without quarreling with the common Sense of Mankind. For the Word, he hath more wit and knowledg of Language than to pretend to find fault with that. For let him but consult Expositors (even the known Criticks) upon the mentioned place Prov. 8. (whom, in so plain a case, I will not be at the pains to quote and transcribe) and take notice whether none read those words, fui in deliciis. Therefore I believe the Considerator will be so ingenuous, as to perceive, he hath, in this part of his Discourse, grosly o­vershot, or undershot, or shot wide of his own Mark, if indeed he had any, or did not (letting his Bolt fly too soon) shoot at Rovers, before he had taken steady aim at any thing. In short, all [Page 25] this Dust could be rais'd but with design only, because he could not enlighten his Readers, to blind them.

But now when he should come by solid Argument to disprove the Hypo­thesis, by shewing that three individual Di­vine Natures, or Essences, can possibly have no Nexus, so as to become one entire Divine Na­ture, and, at the same time, (which this Hy­pothesis supposes) remain still three individual Divine Natures and Essences, he thinks fit to leave it to another to do it for him, who, he says, if he cannot prove this, can prove nothing. And when we see that Proof, it will be time enough to consi­der it.

In the mean time I cannot here but note what I will neither, in Charity, call Forgery in the Considerator, nor, in Ci­vility, Ignorance, but it cannot be less than great Oversight; his talk of these Three, so united as to become One: the Enquirer never spake (nor dreamt) of their becoming One, but of their being na­turally, necessarily, and eternally so.

[Page 26] Then he comes to put the Question, as (he says) it is between the Enquirer and the Socinians. And he puts it thus, How three distinct, several, individual, Divine Beings, Essences, or Substances, should re­main three several individual Substances, and yet, at the same time, be united into One Di­vine Substance called God? One would have thought, when he had so newly wav'd the former Question, as wherein he meant not to be concern'd, he should presently have put a new One, upon which he intended to engage himself. But we have the same over again, even with the same ill look of an equivalent Phrase unto [becoming] [united] into One, to insinuate to his Reader, as if his An­tagonist thought these Three were de novo united, not in, but into One. Which he knew must have a harsh sound, and as well knew it to be most repugnant to the Enquirer's most declared Sentiment. Nor will it be any presumption, if I take the liberty to set down the Question according to the Enquirer's Mind, who [Page 27] have as much reason to know it, as he; and I am sure it will be more agreeable to the tenour of his Discourse now re­ferr'd to, Whether the [...], or the Divine Being, may not possibly, for ought we know, contain three Natures, or Essences, under the Names of Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, so far distinct, as is necessary to found the di­stinct Predications or Attributions severally given them in the Holy Scriptures, and yet be eternally, necessarily, naturally, vitally so uni­ted, as notwithstanding that remaining distin­ction, to be One God.

And let us now see what he hath to say;

First, To the Enquirer's Illustrations of it, as possible.

Secondly, What he brings to prove it impossible.

As to the former part. He first falls up­on what the Enquirer had said concern­ing the vegetative, sensitive, and intellective Natures in our selves. And upon this he insists so operously, as if the whole weight of the Cause had been laid upon [Page 28] it, and seems to think the Enquirer had forgot the Question, when he mention­ed it; because he says, those are only distinct Faculties, not Persons, or Substan­ces (tho Persons were not in his Question) without ever taking any notice of the Enquirers waving it, with these words, That he would content himself with what was more obvious. But this is is all Art. To raise a mighty posse, and labour to seem to those that he believed would read what he writ only, not what the other did, most effectually to expugne what he saw was neglected, tho not altogether use­less, as we shall see anon.

In the mean time, it is observable how needlesly he slurs himself in this his first brisk Onset. He says, No Man ever pretended—That the vegetative, sensitive, and intellective Faculties (or Powers) are so many distinct, individual Persons, Substances, or Essences, we grant, &c.

What did no Man ever pretend that these three distinct Natures, the vegetative, sensitive, intellective, were, in Man, three [Page 29] distinct Substances, or Souls, concurring by a certain subordination in him? What necessity was there, that to heighten his Triumph, in the Opinion of his credulous Followers, he should, with so glorious a Confidence, put on the vain and false shew of having all the World on his side; and herein either dissemble his Knowledge, or grosly bewray his Igno­rance in the meer History of Philosophy. And most imprudently suppose all his Readers as ignorant, as he would seem! What, did he never hear of an Averroist in the World? Doth he not know that Physician and Philosopher, and his Follow­ers, earnestly contended for what he says no Man ever pretended to? Or that divers other Commentators upon Aristotle, have some abetted, others as vehement­ly oppos'd them in it? Not to insist al­so that some thought the Intellectus Agens, and Patiens to be distinct Substances, be­longing to the Nature of Man, as others had also other Conceits about the for­mer? And if he look some hundreds of [Page 30] Years back, as far as the time, and extant Work of Nemesius, Bishop and Philosopher (as he writes himself) of the Nature of Man, (who liv'd in the Time of Gre­gory Nazianzen, as appears by an Epistle of his writ to him, and prefixt to that little Book of his) he will find that Au­thor takes notice there were divers that took Man to consist of Mind, Soul, and Body, and that some did doubt whether the Mind super vening to the Soul, [...], &c. cap. 1. as one to the other, did not make the latter in­telligent. And in several other parts of that Work (easy, if it were necessary to be recited) he speaks it as the Judgment of some, That the unreasonable Nature in Man did exist by it self, [...]. as being of it self an unreasona­ble Soul, not a part of the reasonable, account­ing it one of the greatest Ab­surdities, [...], cap. 16. that the unreason­able Soul should be a part of that which is reasonable.

[Page 31] And he carries us yet much farther back,Enn. 6. lib. 7. cap. 5, 6, 7, &c. referring us to Plo­tinus, in whom any that will, may read much more to that purpose in many places.

It matters not whether this Opinion be true or false, but a great mistake (or misrepresentation) it was, to say no Man ever pretended to it.

And be that as it will; if all the Rea­ders will suspend their Judgments, That a Trinity in the Godhead is impossible, till the Considerator shall have prov'd, by plain demonstration, the concurrence of three such Spirits (a vegetative, sensitive, and intellective) vitally united in the Constitu­tion of Man, is a thing simply impossible, I believe he will not in haste, have many Proselytes.

I, for my part, as his own Eyes might have told him, laid no stress up­on it; but only mentioned it in transitu, as I was going on to what is obvious, and in view to every Man, the union be­tween our Soul and Body. Nor was I sol­licitous [Page 32] to find this an exact Parallel, as he fancies I was obliged to do. What if there be no exact Parallel? Will any Man of a sober Mind, or that is Master of his own Thoughts, conclude every thing impossible in the uncreated Being, whereof there is not an exact parallel in the Creation? If any Man will stand up­on this, come make an Argument of it, let us see it in form, and try its strength. [Whatsoever hath not its exact parallel in the Creation, is impossible in God,] &c. He will sooner prove himself ri­diculous, than prove his Point by such a Medium.

'Tis enough for a sober Man's pur­pose, in such a case as we are now con­sidering, if we find such things actual­ly are (or might as easily be, as what we see actually is) among the Crea­tures, that are of as difficult conception, and explication, as what appears represented in the Enquirers Hypothesis concerning a Trinity. 'Tis trifling to attempt to give, or to ask a parallel exact per omnia. [Page 33] It abundantly serves any reasonable pur­pose, if there be a parallel quoad hoc, viz. in respect of the facility or difficulty of Conception. And tho the vegetative, sensitive, and intellective Natures be not so many distinct Substances, a Trinity is not less conceivable in the Divine Being, than three such Natures, or natural Powers, in the One humane Nature.

And whoever they be that will not simplify the Divine Being into nothing (as the Excellent Author of the 28 Proposi­tions speaks) must also acknowledg the most real Perfections in the Divine Be­ing, tho not univocal, but infinitely transcendent to any thing in us. And are they no way distinct? Let any sober Understanding judg, will the same No­tion agree to them all? Is his Knowledg, throughout, the same with his effective Power? Then he must make himself. For who can doubt he knows himself? And is his Will the self-same undistinguishable Perfection, in him, with his Knowledg? Then the Purposes of his Will must be to [Page 34] effect all that he can. For doth he not know all that he can do? And the Com­placencies of his Will must be as much in what is evil, as good, even in the most odious turpitude of the vilest, and most immoral Evils! For he knows both a­like. I know what is commonly said of extrinsecal Denominations: But are such Denominations true, or false? Have they any thing in re correspondent to them, or have they not? Then some di­stinction there must be of these Perfecti­ons themselves. If so, how are they di­stinguisht?

And there appears great reason, from God's own Word, to conceive greater di­stinction of the three Hypostases in his Be­ing, than of the Attributes which are common to them, as is said, Sob. Enq. pag. 140. In reference whereto, it is not improper or impertinent to mention such Differences, as we find in our own Being, tho they be not distinct Substan­ces.

[Page 35] Less distinction in our selves may lead us to conceive the possibility of greater in him, in whom we are wont to ap­prehend nothing but Substance.

What he adds concerning the Union of Soul and Body in our selves, (which he cannot deny to be distinct Substan­ces) is, from a Man of so good sense, so surprisingly strange, and remote from the Purpose, that one would scarce think it from the same Man; but that he left this part to some other of the Club, and afterwards writ on, himself, with­out reading it over; or this was with him (what we are all liable to) some drowsy Interval.

For when he had himself recited as the Enquirer's words, or sense, If there is this Union between two so contrary Natures and Substances, as the Soul and Body, why may there not be a like Union between two or three created Spirits? He, without sha­dow of a pretence, feigns the Enquirer again to have forgot the Question, be­cause Soul and Body are not both intelligent [Page 32] [...] [Page 33] [...] [Page 34] [...] [Page 35] [...] [Page 36] Substances. And why, Sir, doth this argue him to have forgot the Question? 'Tis as if he expected a Man to be at the top of the Stairs, assoon as he toucht the first Step. In a Series of Discourse, must the beginning touch the end, leav­ing out what is to come between, and connect both parts? What then serve Mediums for? And so farewel to all rea­soning, since nothing can be proved by it self. He expected, it seems, I should have proved three intelligent Na­tures might be united, because three intelli­gent Natures might be united!

But say I (and so he repeats) if there be so near Union between things of so con­trary Natures as Soul and Body, why not be­tween two or three created Spirits? The Question is, as he now states it himself, why may not three intelligent Substan­ces —be united? And hither he (with palpable violence) immediately refers the mention of the Union of Soul and Body; and says he, Why Sir, are Body and Soul intelligent Substances? And, say I, but why, [Page 37] Sir, are not the three (supposed) created Spirits intelligent Substances? And now, thinks he, will my easy admiring Rea­ders, that read me only, and not him, say, What a Baffle hath he given the Enquirer? What an ignorant Man is this Mr.—to talk of Soul and Body, as both intelligent Substances? But if any of them happen upon the Enquirer's Book too, then must they say, how scurvily doth this Matter turn upon himself? How inconsiderate a Prevaricator was he that took upon him the present part of a Considerer, so to represent him? And I my self would say, had I the op­portunity of free Discourse with him in a Corner, (which because I have not, I say it here) Sir, is this sincere Writing? Is this the way to sift out Truth? And I must further say, this looks like a Man stung by the pungency of the present Question. If Soul and Body, things of so contrary Natures, that is, of an intelligent and unintelligent Nature, can be united into one (humane) Nature, why may not three cre­ated [Page 38] Spirits, all intelligent Natures, be as well united into some one thing? It appears you knew not what to say to it; and would fain seem to say something, when you really had nothing to say, and there­fore so egregiously tergiversate, and feign your self not to understand it, or that your Antagonist did not understand himself. The Enquirer's Scope was manifest. Nothing was to be got by so grosly perverting it. Is there no Ar­gument but à pari? Might you not plainly see, he here argued à fortiori? If contrary Natures might be so united, why not much rather like Natures?

When you ask me this Question, Do not Body and Soul remain two Substances, a bodily, and a spiritual, notwithstanding their concurrence to the Constitution of a Man? I answer, Yes. And I thank you, Sir, for this kind Look towards my Hypothesis. If they were not so, the mention of this Union had no way serv'd it. You know 'tis only Union, with continuing di­stinction, that is for my purpose. I [Page 39] doubt you nodded a little, when you ask'd me that Question; and I do an­nuere.

But when the Discourse was only of a natural Union, what, in the Name of Wonder, made you dream of a Christ­mass-Pye? Had you writ it at the same time of Year I am now writing, I should have wondered less. But either you had some particular, preternatural Appetite to that sort of Delicate; or you gave your Fancy a random liberty, to make your Pen write whatever came to your fingers end, and that whirl'd you unaware into a Pastry, and so, by meer chance, you came to have your finger in the Pye. Or you thought to try whe­ther this wild Ramble might not issue as luckily for you, as Dr. Echard's Jargon of Words fortuitously put together (to ridicule Hobbes's fatal Chain of Thoughts) at length ending in a Nap­kin; which was mightily for your turn, in your present Case.

[Page 40] But upon the whole Matter▪ when you let your Mind so unwarily be in pati [...] ­nis, your Cookery quite spoil'd your Phi­losophy. Otherwise, when you had new­ly read those words in the Sob. Enquiry, (as I find you had) pag. 17. [Waving the many artificial Unions of distinct things, that united, and continuing distinct, make one thing, under one Name, I shall only consider what is Natural] you would never have let it (your Mind, I mean so fine a thing) be huddled up, and sopt, with Meat, Plums, Sugar, Wine, in a Christmass-Pye; or have thought that the Union of an humane Soul with an humane Bo­dy was like such a jumble as this. I be­lieve when some among the Antients made use of this Union of Soul and Body, (as I find they have) to represent a very sacred, viz. the Hypostatical One, they little thought it would be so debased; or that any thing would be said of it so extra­vagant as this. And, if we design doing any Body good by writing, let us give over this way of Talk, lest People think, [Page 41] what I remember Cicero once said of the Epicureans arguing, that they do not so much consider, as (sortiri) cast Lots what to say.

But now 'tis like we may come to some closer Discourse. We see what is said to the Enquirer's Elucidation of his Hypothesis to represent it possible, which by meer Oversight and Incogitance (as I hope now appears) was too hastily pro­nounced an Oversight, or Incogitancy.

2. We are next to consider what he says to prove it impossible. And so far as I can apprehend the drift of the Discourse, what he alledges will be reduced to these two Heads of Argument.

Viz. That three such Hypostases (or Subsistents, as I have chosen to call them) can have no possible Nexus, by which to be one God.

1. Because they are all supposed in­telligent.

2. Because they can neither be said to be finite, nor infinite.

[Page 42] He should not therefore have said the Hypothesis was meer incogitance and oversight; for he knows I saw, and considered them both. (In the Sob. En­quiry it self; the former pag. 20, 21. the latter pag. 70, 71. with pag. 122, 123.) And thought them unconcluding then, as I still think. Nor do I find the Con­siderer hath now added any strength to either of them. But I shall, since he is importune, go to the reconsideration of them with him. And

1. As to the former, I cannot so much as imagine what should make him, confessing (which he could not help) the actual Union of an intelligent and unintelligent Being, deny the possible Union of intelligent Beings. He seems to ap­prehend many dangerous things in it, that if he cannot reason, he may fright a Man out of it, and out of his Wits too. It will infer associating, discoursing, solacing. But where lies the danger of all this? Or to whom is it dangerous? He says it introduces three Omniscient, Almighty [Page 43] Beings, as I expresly call them, associat­ing, &c. But he cites no place where, and I challenge him to name any Per­sons among whom, I so expresly called them. He may indeed tell where I blam'd him for representing some of his Adversaries, as affirming three Almighties, and denying more than One; but that is not expresly calling them so my self. And he may know in time 'tis one thing ex­presly to call them so, and another to put him (as he is concerned) to dis­prove it.

Ay, but it will further infer Tritheism. It will make three Gods. And if this be not to make three Gods, it can never be made appear that the Pagans held more Gods —Yes, if there be no natural, vital Nexus, if they be not united in One, of which the Pagans never talkt: Or, if they be co-ordinate, not subordinate, as Dr. Cudworth speaks. And I add, if that subordination be, not arbitrary, but by ne­cessary, natural, continual emanation of the second from the first, and of the third [Page 44] from both the other; so as that their goings forth may be truly from everlasting, as is said of the One, and may as well be conceived of another of them.

I would have the Trinitarians be con­tent with the Reproach of falling in, quoad hoc, with Plato; and not envy their An­tagonists the honour of more closely fol­lowing Mahomet. And, Sir, there is more Paganism in denying this, and the Divine Revelation upon which it is groun­ded, than in supposing it.

No. But there can be no such Nexus. Conversation, Consociation, mutual Harmo­ny, Agreement, and Delectation—cannot be conceived, but between Beings so distinct and diverse, that they can be One in no Natural respect, but only in a Civil, or Oeconomical. This is loud, and earnest. But why can there not? Setting aside Noise and Cla­mour, I want to know a Reason, why intelligent Beings may not be as inti­mately, and naturally united with one another, as unintelligent, and intelligent? And if so, why such Union should spoil [Page 45] mutual Conversation and Delight? Perhaps his Mind and mine might not do well to­gether; for he cannot conceive, and I, for my part, cannot but conceive, that most perfect intelligent Natures, vitally united, must have the most delightful Conversation, Harmony, and Agree­ment together; and so much the more, by how much the more perfect they are, and by how much more perfect their Union is.

Whereas then I expect a Reason, why intelligent Beings cannot be capable of natural Union, and no other is given me, but because they are intelligent. And again, why such Beings naturally united cannot converse, and no other is given me, but because they are naturally united, i. e. Such things cannot be, because they can­not be. By how much the less such Reasons have to convince, they have the more to confirm me, that the Hypothesis I have propos'd is not capable of be­ing disproved. And for my increa­sed Confidence I must profess my [Page 46] self so far beholden to the Conside­rator.

This, in the mean time, I do here declare, that I see not so much as the shadow of a Reason from him, why three spiritual, or intelligent Beings cannot be naturally and vitally united with each other, with continuing distinction, so as to be really and truly One thing. If they cannot, I would know why? i. e. Why they cannot as well, or much rather than the Soul and Body, so as to be one entire Man. If they can; such a created Union is acknowledged possible; which is all that part of our Discourse contends for. And 'tis enough for our present purpose; for this will be an Union of [...], i. e. of things of the same nature, the Soul and Body are [...], i. e. things of very different Natures. And it sufficiently prepared our way, as was intended, to advance further, and add,

That if such a created or made Union be possible, it cannot be understood why a [Page 47] like uncreated or unmade Union should be thought impossible.

And if it be possible, the noisy Clamour, that a Trinity in the Godhead is impossible, or that it will infer Tritheism, must cease, and be husht into everlasting silence. Or if it shall still be resolved to be kept up, to carry on the begun Humour, can on­ly serve to fright Children, or unthink­ing People; but can never be made ar­ticulate enough, to have any significati­on with Men of sense.

For when the Father is acknowledg'd on all hands to be the Original, or Fountain-Being, existing necessarily, and eternally of himself; the Son existing by eternal Promanation necessarily of, and from, and in the Father; the Holy Ghost of, and in them both; These, be­cause they all exist necessarily, cannot but be each of them God, and, because they exist in necessary, natural, eternal Union, can­not but be one God.

And he that shall attempt to make Tritheism of this, will sooner prove [Page 48] himself not the third part of a wise Man, than from hence prove three Gods. We may truly and fitly say the Father is God, the Son is God, the Holy Ghost is God. But that form of Speech, the Father is a God, the Son is a God, the Holy Ghost is a God, I think unjustifiable. The former way of speaking well agrees with the Homo­ousiotes of the Deity, the Substance where­of is congenerous. You may fitly say of three drops of the same Water, they are each of them Water. But if you should say they are each of them a Water, one would understand you to mean they were all drops of so many different sorts of Water. I do upon the whole judg the Substance or Essence of the three Hypostases to be as perfectly One, as can possibly consist with the emanation of some from other of them. But now next.

In his way to his second Topick of Ar­gumentation, he is guilty of a strange sort of omission, i. e. he twice over says he will omit, what he greatly insists upon, as a mighty matter, that this (meaning [Page 49] the Enquirer's Hypothesis) is Heresy among those of his own Party, whether they be the nominal, or the real Trinitarians, who all agree, That each of the Divine Persons is perfect God, in the most ade­quate and perfect sense; and this too, as such Person is considered sejunctly, or as the Athanasian Creed speaks, by himself, &c.

To this I only say, in the first place, that, if this weigh any thing, it ought in reason to be as heavy upon him, as me; for I believe the same People that will call this account of the Trinity Heresy, will call his denial of it Heresy much more. But if he be not concern'd at that, I am the more obliged to him, that he hath a kinder concern for me than himself. And if he really have, let it ease his mind to know, that let the Opinion be Heresy never so much, I, for my part, am however resolv'd to be no Heretick, as he, and they may well e­nough see, by the whole tenour of that Discourse.

[Page 50] But yet I humbly crave leave to differ from him in this, as well as in greater Matters. I am apt enough indeed to think that the Nominal Trinitarians will judg the Opinion of the Real Trinitarians to want Truth; and the Real will, per­haps, more truly judg theirs to want Sense. But neither the one, nor the other will say that each of the Divine Persons is perfect God, in the most adequate and perfect sense. For both cannot but agree that God, in the most adequate and perfect sense, includes Father, Son, and Holy Ghost; but they will none of them say that each, or any of the Persons is Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. And I am very confident, he that shall so represent them, will be­tray them by it into such inconvenien­cies, and so much against their mind and intent, that if ever they did trust him, as I believe they never did this Con­siderator, to express their sense for them, they never will do it more. As for A­thanasius himself, whose Creed he menti­ons, tho he often speaks of an equality of [Page 51] the Persons in point of Godhead; yet he also often, Tom. 2. p. 576. most expres­ly excepts the Differences (which I take to be very important) of being un­begotten, begotten, and proceeding. And which is a Difference with a Witness, in his Questions and Answers; He asks how many Causes are there in God? [(Q. 11.) [...],] and answers, One only, and that is the Father. And then asks [Q. 12. [...]] How many effects, or things caused? And answers two, the Son and the Spirit. And adds, The Fa­ther is call'd a Cause, because he begets the Son, and sends out the Spirit. The Son and Spirit are said to be caused, because the Son is begotten, and doth not beget; the Spirit is sent forth, and doth not send. Now can he be thought all this while to mean an absolute equality? And whereas he uses the Term [...], which our Author renders sejunctly, or by himself, that he may make it seem opposite to what is said by the Enquirer, pag. 50. I, for my part, say, as Athanasius doth, that each [Page 48] [...] [Page 49] [...] [Page 50] [...] [Page 51] [...] [Page 52] of these Persons is [...], singly God, and Lord; but I say not, as he doth not; and he denies what the Sober Enquiry de­nies, in the mentioned place, That any one of the Persons sejunctly, is all that is sig­nify'd by the Name of God, which words this Author slily leaves out, for what purpose he best knows. But his pur­pose, be it what it will, can no longer be served by it, than till the Reader shall take the pains to cast back his Eye upon pag. 50. of the Sober Enquiry. And I must here put the Considerator in mind of what I will not suppose him ignorant, but inadvertent only, at this time; That one may be sejoin'd, or abstracted from another two ways, or by a twofold abstraction, precisive, or negative. That we may truly say of the Father, Son, or Holy Ghost, that the One of them is, or is not God, abstracting from both the other, according as you differently ab­stract. If you abstract any one of the Persons from both the other by precisive abstraction, and each of them is God or [Page 53] Lord, [...], or singly considered; but if by negative abstraction you sever any one from the other, so as to say the one is God, and not the other, or any one is all that is signify'd by the Name of God, I deny it, as before I did; for so you would exclude the other two the Godhead; which is but what was expresly enough said Sob. Enquiry, pag. 47. The Father is God, but not ex­cluding the Son and the Holy Ghost, the Son is God, but not excluding—&c.

And if (as this Author quotes) we are compelled by the Christian Verity so to speak, I wonder it should not compel him, as it is Christian Verity, or at least as it is Ve­rity, as well as the rest of Christians, or Mankind. Why hath he only the privi­lege of exemption from being com­pell'd by truth? Athanasius his word is [...], we are necessitated; and if the Considerator's own Translation grieve him, he might relieve himself by con­sidering that all Necessity is not compul­sive.

[Page 54] And because he hath brought me to Athanasius, I shall take the occasion to say, I cannot apprehend him to have any sentiment contrary to this Hypothe­sis. His business was against the Arians, or the Ariomanites (as he often called them, as symbolizing also with Manes.) And because with them the Controversy was, whether the Son and Spirit were Creatures, in opposition hereto he constantly asserts their consubstantiality with the Father, never intending (for ought that appears) that their Being was numerically the same with his; but of the same kind, uncreated, coessential, coeternal with his own. For so he expresly speaks in his other (or additio­nal) Questions, Quaestiones aliae. i. e. asking (Quest. 6.) How many Essences [...], i. e. How many sorts of Essence (as the Answer will direct us to understand it) do you acknowledg in God?

The Answer is, I say, one Essence, one Nature, one Form ( [...]) and adds, one Kind, ( [...]) which sufficiently ex­pounds [Page 55] all the rest. He acknowledged no different kinds of Essence or Nature in the Godhead, but that One only, which was eternal and uncreated; agreeably to what he elsewhere says against the Followers of Sabellius. Contra Sabellii Gregales. 'Tis impossible things not eternal—Beings not partaking God­head, should be ranked, or put in the same order with the Godhead. Afterwards speak­ing of the Father and the Son, he says, [...], the One is such (not the same) as the other, the other such as he. And that the Son was not to be conceived under another Species ( [...]) nor under a strange and foreign Character ( [...]) but was God as the Father. And I appeal to any Man's Understanding and Conscience, If that great Author believ'd a numerical same­ness of Essence, common to the three Persons, what should make him blame the Sabellians for making the Son [...], [...]. Tom. 1. p. 241. Edit. Paris. not [...], when by the latter in [Page 56] that case, he must mean the same thing as by the former?

In the forecited Questions, he expresly says we were to acknowledg in the Deity [...], three Individuals. An­swer to Quest. 7. ubi priùs.

And elsewhere he as distinctly asserts [...], three things. And what could he mean by three things, not three Deities, (as he often inculcates) but he must certainly mean three Entities, three Essences; for by three things, he could not possibly mean three Non-Entities, or three Nothings. His great care plainly was to assert the true Deity of the Son and Spirit, or their Preeternity, or that it could never be said ( [...]) there was a time when they were not, which he inculcates in an hundred places, still insisting that one Deity, one Essence was common to them, but still with distin­ction; and as warmly inveighs against Sabellius and P. Samosatensis, as against Arius every whit.

[Page 57] And that which puts his meaning quite out of doubt, speak­ing how the Father, Tractat. de De­finitionibus, Tom. 2. 45. ubi vid. plura. Son and Spirit, tho of one and the same sort of Essence, are three Hypostases, he plainly says the Nature wherein they partake is so One, as the humane Nature is One in all Men. We Men, saith he, consisting of a Body and a Soul, are all ( [...]) of one Nature and Substance, or Essence; but we are many Hypostases. And to the same purpose [Dial. 2. de Trinitate] his Ano­moeos comparing the Father, Son and Spi­rit, to a Bishop, Presbyter, and Deacon, he brings in the Orthodox saying, they have all the same Nature, being each of them Man; as an Angel, a Man, and an Horse, have dif­ferent Natures.

In the mean time, because Men are not inseparably, and vitally united with one another, as the Divine Persons are, and cannot but be, by reason of the ne­cessary, eternal, perpetual emanation of the two latter from the first, they can­not [Page 58] admit to be called one Man, as the three Persons in the Godhead, are and cannot but be one God. Inasmuch as these three Divine Persons partake real Godhead (as existing necessarily each of them) they are each truly God: but be­cause they partake it in necessary, eternal, vital Union; and so that the first is the radix, the second perpetually spring­ing from the first, and the third from both the other, they are therefore to­gether one God As Branches, tho really distinct from each other, and the Root, are altogether notwithstanding but one Tree, and all omoousial, or consubstantial to one another; which is an illustration famili­ar with the the Antients.

And if there be any, now a days, that will call this Heresy, (tho as I said, I will be no Heretick however) yet if I must make a choice, I had rather be an Heretick with the Ante-Nicene and Nicene Fathers, and Post-Nicene, for ought ap­pears to the contrary, through some fol­lowing Centuries, than be reputed Or­thodox [Page 59] with P. Lumbard, &c. whom a German Divine, not of meanest account, calls one of the four Evangelists of Anti­christ.

But having now done with what he said he would omit, but did not, (tho he might to every whit as good purpose) we come to what he overlooks not, be­cause (he intimates) he cannot. And let us see whether he looks into it, to any bet­ter purpose, than if he had quite over­look'd it. He is indeed the more excusa­ble that he overlooks it not, because (he says) he could not. In that case there is no remedy. Nor do I see how he well could, when the Sober Enquirer had once and again so directly put it in his view, and, as was said, objected it to himself.

But he thinks, however, to make an irrefragable Battering Ram of it, where­with to shiver this Doctrine of the Tri­nity all to pieces, and he brings it into play with the two Horns before menti­oned.

[Page 60] The Father, he says, for instance, is ei­ther infinite in his Substance, his Wisdom, his Power, his Goodness, or he is not.

With the like pompous apparatus, and even in the same Terms, [...], &c. Sext. Empir. ad­versus Mathema­ticos, Lib. 8. I find a series of Argumen­tation is by a noted Scep­tick adorned, and set forth against the Being of any God at all.

If there be any Divine Being, 'tis either Finite or Infinite, &c.

And he reasons upon each Head, as the Matter could admit, and probably thought as well of the Performance as our Author doth of his.

But let us see how much to the pur­pose our Author uses it in the present case.

The Enquirer had represented three really distinct Subsistents in the Godhead as possible, for ought we know, not presuming to determine herein, this way or that, beyond what is plain in it self, or plainly revealed. And so still he thinks [Page 61] it may be, for ought he knows; for he pro­fesses not to know any thing to the con­trary. Yes (saith the Considerator) but I do. No doubt, if any Man. But say I, how know you? I know, saith he, they can neither be finite, nor infinite, therefore there can be no such thing at all.

But, say I, Do you know what infi­nite is, or can you comprehend it? Yes, very well,Considerations on the Lord Bi­shop of Worce­ster's Sermon; p. 7, 8. says he; for I have an infinite all-com­prehending Mind. What a Cyclopick understand­ing is this? Nay, and he pretends he can comprehend the very Being of God (otherwise all Religion must cease) after he had granted, we (inclu­ding himself) cannot comprehend the least spire of Grass. And yet that Being of God is nothing else with him, but Existence, (i. e. not to be nothing) which he there va­frously inserts, but very imprudently; for every one sees he said it only to a­void the purpose he was to speak to, and [Page 62] so said it not to any present good purpose at all? As if it had been the Bishop's word, and all one with God's Being. 'Tis true that his Being in­cludes his Existence: But hath he there­fore a clear, distinct and adequate con­ception what God is, because he, indi­stinctly, conceives a Being, vulgarly signify'd by the Name of God, doth exist? Bring the matter to Creatures, and because he knows, as he may by the sight of his Eye, that such a Creature ex­ists, doth he therefore understand its Nature? Existence is to be extra causas, and this is common to all Creatures; as to be necessarily, and without a cause, is peculiar to God. If therefore Exi­stence, and their Being be all one, all Creatures are the same, and differ not from one another; for to be extra causas is that wherein they all agree. And ex­tend it further, as Existence is to be, in rerum naturâ, abstracting from being caused, or uncaused; and so God, and Creatures will be all one. And see whe­ther [Page 63] this will not make all Religion cease too?

But if he say, tho Existence abstractly taken, distinguishes not God from Creatures; yet his Existence doth distin­guish him. Very true; but that leads us back to the Consideration of his Be­ing, of what sort that is. Which there­fore, if he had pleased, he might as well have let stand before as it was; and might have considered that Existence, and that which doth exist, are not of the same import. Or that it is not all one, to say that God doth exist, and what he is that doth exist.

But it will be worth the while to ex­amine a little further this Author's compre­hension of Infinites. He says it is to have a clear, distinct, and adequate concep­tion of them, so he comprehends the infinite Attributes of God. His Eterni­ty, i. e. that Duration, by which he is with­out all beginning, and end. This tells us what it is not. But doth it tell us what it is? q. d. An infinite Duration is a [Page 64] boundless Duration: A Grammatical De­finition! Or rather a meer Translation of Latin into English. And so he might teach a meer Latinist what boundless is, by turning the English back again into Latin. And greatly hath he edify'd his Disciple! As much as he should, without such change of Language, by saying Invasi­on is Invasion. And doth he give any better account of infinite Wisdom and Power? Are his Conceptions of them clear and distinct. 'Tis possible to know much, and not be very wise. I do not think that therefore, which he gives, a very good account of Wisdom. Again, knowing is doing somewhat. He speaks not now of making this or that, but more generally of doing any thing. Nor doth any one know any thing, but what he can know. Therefore his Wisdom is Power; for so is an ability to know, Power, as truly, as an ability to do any thing else. Here is confusion, therefore, in­stead of distinction. And to the com­prehending any thing, I should think it [Page 65] as requisite a Man's Conception be true, as distinct. Now when he pretends to have distinct Conceptions of God's in­finite Wisdom and Power, if also his Con­ceptions be true, those infinite Attri­butes are distinct. I am sure he com­prehends them not, if, whereas he clear­ly conceives them distinct, they are not so. But if they are distinct, they are distinct, what? Substances? or Acci­dents? If the former, according to him, distinct Divine Substances must be distinct Gods. If the latter, let him weather the Difficulties as he can of admitting Accidents in the Divine Being. Either way, he must as little pretend to be­lieve an omnimodous simplicity there, as the Enquirer. But would he then have him give better and fuller Conceptions of these infinite Attributes, or rather of the Infinity of them, which is his present busi­ness? No, no, that is none of the En­quirer's part. He pretends not to com­prehend Infiniteness. 'Tis enough for One, among Mortals, to offer at [Page 66] (that ingens ausum) so great a thing!

When again he says his Conception of the Infinite Divine Wisdom, Power, &c. is adequate, telling us they are those Pro­perties whereby God knows, and can do, what­soever implies not a contradiction to be known, and done: I ask, but doth he compre­hend in his Mind all those things which it implies not a contradiction for him to know and do? If not, what is become of his adequate Conception? He may so comprehend all that the most learn­ed Book contains, because he knows the Title, or something of its Cover; and he hath a very adequate Conception of all that is contained in the Universe, because he hath some general notion of what is signify'd by the word World. Let him then pretend as long as he please to com­prehend Infiniteness, no sober Man will believe him, and the less, because he pre­tends it. If he put his Mind upon the trial, and deal justly and truly when he hath try'd, I would ask him, let him put the Notion of Infiniteness upon [Page 67] what he pleases, Space, for instance, whe­ther, as he thinks away any whatsoever bounds of it, new ones do not imme­diately succeed? And let him think a­way those, whether still he doth not pre­sently conceive new? Yes, but he can divert and think no more of it, i. e. he can think▪ what Infinite is, by not thinking! And yet if he did understand Infinites never so well, it would be no small spite to him if a Man did but assert the Infiniteness of one of the Persons (the Father), and only [...] as to the other two, as knowing their intimate Union with him, makes his Wisdom, Power, &c. as truly theirs, as if it first resided in themselves; his Argument is quite undone by it to all intents and purposes.

But I shall however, farther state and weigh this case of [knowing, or not knowing, three such Hypostases cannot be infinite.] And

1. Shew what might cast a thinking Man upon, supposing they may be all infinite for ought one knows.

[Page 68] 2. Then consider the difficulty that is in it.

1. As to the former. That the Fa­ther virtually (or eminently rather) com­prehends all being, created and uncreated, there is no doubt. Nor again, that what is from him, by perpetual, natural, necessa­ry Emanation, cannot but be homoousial to himself, the Athanasian Differences only supposed, of being unbegotten, and be­gotten, &c. But how to understand these is the difficulty; i. e. How the same numerical Nature is both begotten, and no [...] begotten; nor will I determine it. Let them do it that can better. I, for my part, as I have said, assert nothing in this matter, only have proposed to be considered what may be thought possible herein.

But if any would set themselves to consider this matter, I would have them take the difficulty they are to consider, entirely, and as it truly is in it self; that they may not be short in their reckon­ing. And to that purpose to bethink [Page 69] themselves what is the proper Character (as Athanasius, and before him Justin Martyr phrase it) or Modus of the Son (for instance) that 'tis to be begotten. This methinks should bear very hard upon the meer Modalists, who hereupon must say, that to be begotten is the only thing begotten, and so consequently that to be begotten, is the thing that is peculiarly said to be incarnate, and that suffered, &c. For they must assign that which di­stinguishes the Son from the Father, other­wise they will make the Father be begot­ten, which is somewhat harder than to be Patripassians, or to make him to have suffered.

But it must also be upon the matter even the same difficulty, to say, the same numerical Nature, with the Modus, is begotten. For then the same numerical Nature must still be both unbegotten, and begotten, which is very hard. And if they reply, Yes, but under a distinct Mo­dus. Well; but what is that distinct Mo­dus? And when they find it is but to be [Page 70] begotten, they must be hugely abashed, as one of less deep Thought than they would think. For so, the Nature be­ing common both to the Father and the Son, all that is peculiar to the begotten, from the Begetter, will still be but to be begotten, i. e. When the Question is askt, What only is begotten? the Answer will be but as above, to be begotten. It hath hitherto, therefore, been only en­quired, Whether it will not seem easier to suppose each Subsistent to have its own singular Nature, tho Homoousial, as, the two latter being by emanation from the first, it cannot but be? Which hath been often inculcated, and is plain in it self. Meer arbitrary Productions may be very di­verse from their Original, but purely natu­ral, especially emanative, cannot be so. And then the only considerable difficul­ty which remains is this now before us, viz. The finiteness or infiniteness of these three Hypostases: 'Tis plain they cannot be all finite. But here our present Adversary places his principal pains, and labour, [Page 71] to prove, what he knows no Body will deny, that they cannot be so. And hence he carries away glorious Tro­phies, That three, or three thousand finites, will never make one infinite.—Spolia ampla—!

But how knows he they are not all Infinite? That, in short, which he hath here to say, is but this, and can be no more than this, till his Thoughts have run through and compass'd the never-utmost range of Infiniteness, viz. That he knows they are not, he knows not what! But how can he soberly say that? How can he either affirm or deny of a­nother what he doth not understand? Is this his demonstration of the impossibili­ty of a Trinity in the Godhead? Sup­pose the Father infinite, cannot the other two be infinite also, for ought he knows? How doth he know they cannot? By the same medium, by which he knows it, he may make other Mortals know it too, if he think fit to communicate it. Which, from so mighty Confidence, especially [Page 72] when he pretends it to be so easy, I have hitherto expected, but in vain. Is it because the first is infinite, therefore the two other cannot be so? I am sure he ought not to say so, whatever others may, or whatsoever the truth of the thing is (which we shall enquire into by and by) for he hath over and over acknowledg'd more Infinites than one. As when he ascribes infinite Comprehension to the Mind of Man (as hath been noted, pag. 8. of these Considerations) he doth not indeed say the Mind is simply in it self infinite, but it is so in respect of its Com­prehension, which Comprehension must therefore be infinite. How agreeable or consistent these Terms are, the infinite Comprehension of a finite Mind, we are not to consider; let him take care for that, who can easily make light of such tri­vial Difficulties as these. But in the mean time this infinite Comprehension is an infinite something, not an infinite nothing; and then so many Minds, so many Comprehensions, and so many Infi­nites. [Page 73] No doubt he includes his own Mind; and 'tis possible he may think some other Minds as comprehensive as his own. And ought not to think it impossible, supposing an uncreated, eternal Word, and Spirit, in the Deity, that they may be infinite, as well as the comprehension of his own and some other Minds. These Considera­tions, p. 31, 32. Be­sides what he seems to grant of infinite Guilts, and Punish­ments due, tho he doth not grant the Sacrifice of Christ to be an equivalent for them. All shews he thinks there may be many Infinites, and even in the same kind.

But tho to him, to whom it is not ea­sy to guess what would be difficult, this would seem a very vincible Difficulty; it is of much greater importance, that we may do right to Truth, to consider it, as it is in it self. And I acknowledg it (as I have said over and over) to be in it self, a great difficulty, as all sober Men have been wont to do, that have [Page 74] had any occasion to employ their thoughts that way.

But my part herein hath less of diffi­culty in it; which is only to expect, and examine, what another will attempt to prove from this Topick, not to assert any thing my self. My Opponent takes upon him boldly to pronounce, there cannot be three distinct Hypostases in the Deity. Why? say I. Because saith he, that will suppose each of them infinite, which cannot be. I say, why can it not be? He perhaps may tell me, if any one be infinite, nothing can be added thereto, or be without its compass, much less can there be another Infinite added to the former. I only now say, you talk confidently in the dark, you know not what. And so as to involve your self in Contradictions, do what you can.

1. In saying nothing can be added to what is infinite.

2. In pretending to know, if any thing can be added, how much, or how little can.

[Page 75] 1. In saying nothing can be added to, or be without the compass of, what is infinite. For then there could be no Creation, which I cannot doubt him to grant. Before there was any, was there not an infinitude of Being in the eternal God­head? And hath the Creation nothing in it of real Being? Or will you say the Be­ing of the Creature is the Being of God? I know what may be said (and is else­where said) to this, and 'twill better serve my purpose than his.

2. In pretending to know what can, or cannot be added. Or that, in the way of necessary eternal Emanation, there cannot be an infinite addition; tho not in the way of voluntary, or arbitrary and tem­porary production. The reason of the dif­ference is too obvious to need elucidati­on to them that can consider. But for your part (I must tell my Antagonist) you have concluded your self, even as to that which carries the greatest ap­pearance of impossibility, come off as [Page 76] you can.Considerations, pag. 8. You say, a Body of an Inch square, is not on­ly not infinite in extension, but is a very small Body; yet it hath this infinite power, to be divisible to infinity. So, I suppose, you must say of half that Inch, or a quarter, or the thousandth part of it, much more of two, or twenty, or a thousand Inches. You say, indeed, this Body it self is not infinite. Nor will I insist upon the trite and common Obje­ction against you. How can any thing be divisible into parts which it hath not in it? Which yet Men have not talkt away, by talking it often over. Still haeret lateri —Nor of an infinite Power's being lodg­ed in a finite (and so minute a) Subject. But, in the mean time, here are Infinites upon Infinites, an infinite Power upon an infinite Power multiplyed infinitely; and still these infinite Powers greater and less than other, as either the Inch is augment­ed,Ibid. or diminished. And he saith the Mind of Man hath the Pro­perty of infinite or eternal duration. There­fore [Page 77] so many Minds, so many Infi­nites. And he must suppose the infinite duration of some Minds to be greater than of others, unless he think his own Mind to be as old as Adam's; or do not only hold their preexistence, but that they were all created in the same moment. Which if he do, I am sure he can never prove. And so, for ought he knows, there may not only be many Infinites, but one greater than another.

What therefore exceeds all limits that are assignable, or any way conceiv­able by us, as we are sure the Divine Be­ing doth, it is impossible for us to know what differences that vast Infinitude con­tains. And we shall, therefore, but talk at random, and with much more presumption than knowledg, when we take upon us to pronounce it impossible, there should be three infinite Hypostases in the God­head. Especially considering that most intimate vital Union that they are sup­posed to have each with other, in re­spect whereof, the Son is said to be [Page 78] [...], inexisting in the Father (as A­thanasius's Phrase is) agreeably to the Lan­guage of Scripture, Joh. 14. 11. and elsewhere. And which, by parity of Reason, is to be conceiv'd of the Holy Ghost too, who is also said to search all things, even the deep things of God, 1 Cor. 2. 10. In respect of which Union, and the [...], which may thence be collected, whatever of real Perfection, Wisdom, Power, Goodness, &c. is in any one, is each ones as truly as any ones, all being originally in the Father, as the first and everliving fountain of all. As was said, Sober Enquiry, p. 31, 32.

But whereas the Considerator urges, If the Father be infinite in his Substance, in his Wisdom, his Power, his Goodness, he is God in the most adequate and perfect sense of the Word. I say, well, and what then? If therefore he mean the Son and the Holy Ghost must be excluded the God­head, let him prove his consequence if he can. And he may find the answer to it, Sob. Enquiry, pag. 53. I shall not tran­scribe, [Page 79] nor love, when I have writ a Book, to write it over again. His No­tion may fit Pagans well enough, or those who are not otherwise taught. Christians are directed to understand that the Deity includes Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. Their equality I acknow­ledg with the mentioned Athanasian Ex­ception; notwithstanding which, that they equally communicate in the most Cha­racteristick difference of the Deity, from all Creatures, viz. Necessity of Existence, is conceivable enough.

To sum up all, the Considerator I un­derstand, even by the whole manage­ment of his Discourse, and specially by the conclusion of that part wherein the Enquirer is concern'd, to have most entirely given up this Cause, as ever did any Man.

The Enquirer's only Undertaking was to maintain the possibility of a Trinity in the Godhead, in opposition to his former, da­ring Assertion, of its being impossible, and nonsense.

[Page 80] He now, in conclusion, says, the En­quirer saw there must be a Nexus; intima­ting, if there can, that he hath gain'd his point; but, 'tis added, he durst not ven­ture to say what it was. To which I must say,

That this is most uncautiously said, I will not say, deceitfully, tho I know 'tis said untruly; and he might have known (or remembred) too, that he (the Enquirer) often spoke of it, as a necessary, natural, eternal, vital, and most intimate Union.

He further says, he only explains it by the Union of Soul and Body. Which again,

1. Is so great a Misrepresentation, that I wonder he would say it here, when he himself but two or three Pages off recites as the Enquirer's words, ‘[If God could unite into one, two such con­trary Natures, let any Man give me a reason why he might not (much more) first make, and then unite two, and if two, why not three Spi­rits, [Page 81] &c.] Is this only to explain it by the Union of Soul and Body?

But by the way that [first make, and then unite] was none of the Enquirer's, but appears thrust in to make what was manifestly possible, seem impossible. Sic notus—Let two Substances be created entire, with no natural Propension to each other, they are capable of no natural Union, without change of their Natures. Who sees not, it were a Contradiction to suppose them, the same still, and not the same? But suppose them created with mutual aptitudes to Union, and uni­ted, what should hinder but they may continue united, without being con­founded?

2. And 'tis said impertinently, as well as untruly; for what if he had not ex­plain'd it at all, is it therefore impossible, which it belonged to him to prove, or he did nothing; and he hath done no­thing towards it. I have askt him be­fore, and now I put it again seriously [Page 82] to him, whether he do in his Conscience believe this a good Argument [Such an Union, i. e. natural, necessary, &c. hath no pattern or parallel in the Creation; therefore it is impossible in the Nature of God?]

For what he adds, That the Soul and Body in a Man are not united into one Sub­stance or Essence, nor possibly can be; The Cause indeed depends not on it, but lies remote from it. Methinks however it is very feat, and shews him pinch't, that he can be brought to this! Hath a Man no Substance? Is he a shadow? Or hath he no Essence? Is he a Non-enti­ty? Or is his Essence a Body? Then a Body is a Man. Or is his Essence a Spirit? Then, a Spirit is a Man. If he say either of these, I wish he would tell us the quantity of those Propositions, that we may know whether he means that every Body is a Man, or every Spirit is a Man? I am sure where the Essence is, there must be the Essentiatum. Or whether Soul and Bo­dy [Page 83] united, make nothing different from either, or both disunited? Or whether a Man be only such a thing as a Pye? Or why might not a Pudding serve as well, if made up of several Ingredients? He hath greatly indeed oblig'd Mankind for such an Honour done them! If indeed the Cause depended on it, he would have good store of Philosophers to con­fute, and all that have any concern for their own kind, before he could dis­prove the possibility of the supposed U­nion in the Deity, and you have no­thing for it but his bare word: Which (at least, without the addition of his Name) will not do the business. Nor, if he could also bring us a demonstration against the Union of Soul and Body, can he thereby prove such an Union as we suppose in the Godhead impossible. The case is quite another. The Union of the Soul and Body was never by me cal­led essential; for I well know, if they were essentially united, in the strict sense [Page 84] they could never be disunited. But 'tis commonly call'd a substantial Union, and I called it natural in respect of the Princi­ple, Nature, in contradistinction to Art. As for the supposed Union we speak of in the Deity, that, being necessary, original, eternal, it must be essential, or none; but with such distinction as before was sup­posed. For it was Union, not Identity, that was meant, which Union, with such distinction, till they be proved impossible, the Enquirer's Cause is untoucht. And is certainly to any such purpose, not in the least touch'd by the Considerator.

Whether there be any such Union that may admit to be called essential among the Creatures, doth neither make nor marr. We have never said there was, nor doth the stress of the Cause lie upon it.

I find indeed an ingenious, merry Gentleman animadverts upon a Post­script writ against the Sober Enquiry, and upon a Letter in answer to it, who at a [Page 85] venture calls all essential Union, essential Contradiction, and substantial Nonsense. Who this is, I will not pretend to guess, only I guess him not to be the same with the Considerator, for this, besides other Reasons, that he calls the Author of the Considerations a great Man; and I scarce think he would call himself so. His Wit, and sportful Humour, I should have liked better in a less serious Affair. For this heboldly pronounces, in immedi­ate reference to the Trinity it self, (that the World might know he hath a Confidence, at least, equal to his Wit) I can easily ab­stain from asserting that any created Uni­ons are to be called strictly essential, be­cause then they must be simply indissolu­ble. And I see not but whatsoever things the Creator hath united, he may disunite, if he be so pleased. Yet one might have expected this Author to have been a little more civil to him whom he stiles the late famous Dr. More, who hath publisht to the World his express Senti­ments [Page 86] in this matter, that created Spi­rits have real amplitude, made up of indi­scerpible parts, essentially united, so as not to be separable, without annihilation of the whole. One would think he should not have treated him so, as to make his essential Union, substantial Non­sense.

But there are those left in the World, who have that Veneration for the Doctor, as to think it no indecent rude­ness to this Gentleman, not to put his judgment in the ballance against the Doctor's, or to distinguish between his calling it Nonsense, and proving it so.

But if any wonder that they who think there is no such thing as an essenti­al Union among Creatures, do yet think there may be in the uncreated Being, they will shew themselves mighty wise in their wonder, i. e. in wondering that the Creatures are not God. And if they further hereupon enquire, why we will [Page 87] then make use of Unions not essential, a­mong Creatures, to illustrate that which is supposed essential in the uncreated Be­ing, and expect very particular, distinct accounts of every thing so represented; they will shew themselves as wise in their Expectations, i. e. that they think nothing can serve to illustrate, unless it be like in all respects.

That Question still returns. Is every thing to be judg'd by any Man of sense impossible in God, whereof he hath not given distinct and explicit accounts, and illustrations from somewhat in the Creatures? And another will be added, Is there any thing originally in God, not essential to him?

But when the World is so full of in­stances of substantial Unions, without Confusion, or Identification, that he cannot so much as name me a created Substance, that he can be sure exists ab­solutely simple, I am sure it can be no contradiction to suppose that there may [Page 88] be uncreated, necessary, eternal Uni­on, without Confusion or Identification; and that it would be, as he phrases it, essential Contradiction, or substantial Nonsense, to say that things united ne­cessarily (tho distinct) can possibly ever admit of Separation. And if our mo­dern Anti-Trinitarians (for I will not call them by the inept Name of Unitarians, which as rightfully belongs to them whose Adversaries they are pleas'd to be, as to themselves, and therefore cannot di­stinguish the one from the other) would allow it to be their Method to under­stand the Doctrine of the Orthodox Anti­ents, before they decry and hoot at it, they would find that as they allow suffici­ent distinction of the sacred Hypostases; so the Union they assert, is not such as identifies them, but only signifies them to be inseparable. So speaks Athanasius him­self, We think not as the Sabellians, that the Son is of one and the same Essence with the Father, but consubstantial—Nor do we [Page 89] assert three Hypostases sepa­rated as with Men, [...]. bodily, lest with the Gentiles, we should admit Polytheism, &c.

So do Liberius and he agree in Senti­ment. Liber. Epist. ad Athan. [...]. The one says, The Son is not separated from the Father's Hypostasis. The other,Rescript. Ath. ad Liberium. [...]. We hold not the Son divided from the Father, &c.

And upon the most impartial, faith­ful, and diligent search and considerati­on, I do solemnly declare there needed nor more of rationality, or intelligibleness in this Doctrine, to keep it from being ri­dicul'd, as contradictious, and non­sense; but only less prejudice, and more modesty in the Opposers of it, with more reverence of the Divine Majesty, upon this (obvious) apprehension, that if it be true, it must be Sacred, Divine Truth.

[Page 90] This Author would fain have me with him to the Play-House, whither really I have no leasure to accompany him, nor much temptation; for I perceive it hath fill'd his Mind with Ideas not useful to my purpose; nor, I think, to any good one of his own. If there he learned to jest away that which should be the best part of himself; and of which Socrates, dying, told his Friends it would be gone far enough out of their hands, and for that which was left behind, they might bury, or do with it what they pleased. If there he was taught to ridicule the Holy Apostle's distinction of (an [...], and [...],) an inner and an outer Man; and when he hath thrown the for­mer of these out of his Notion of him­self, for my part, I must think of that which is left, that the silly Indian is the less silly Creature of the two.

And besides, as he is too much given to play, to mind any thing of serious Discourse, so I find he is not throughout [Page 91] honest in his Play neither; but that even when he pretends to sit out, and be but a Spectator, only taking care that there be fair play, he falls in himself, and plays booty. Nor do I find he hath any thing of Argument in his Discourse, which hath not been considered already in the Discourse I have had with the Con­siderator. I therefore take leave of them both together, and of you too, Sir, be­ing in great Sincerity

Your Affectionate Humble Servant, The Enquirer.

Errata. Pag. 21. l. 20. 1. [...]. P. 51. l. 11. r. [...].


THE Letter to the Clergy of both Vni­versities, came not to my Sight, or No­tice, till some hours after the last Sheet of this Discourse was brought me from the Press; I have not time therefore to say much to it, nor yet should say more than I do had I never so much. The Author seems to think what he was now doing, as to the Enquiry, superfluous, because he said it was so fully done by an ab [...]er Hand, &c. In the mean time he was [...]n ill case, that he was neither able to write to any purpose, nor be silent: A most deplorable double Impotency? But he hath notwith­standing his Modesty, shown a double Ability, to invent and make an Hypothesis of his own Fingers Ends, and then most dexterously to combat that Shadow. Three inadequate Gods, is indeed (to use his own Phrase) his own In­vention, constantly disavow'd by the Enquirer, who, with the generality of Trinitarians, calls the three Subsistents in the Godhead, God; being each of them necessarily existent, but none of them alone exclusively, a God.

What Art he hath is shewn in fighting this his own Figment. As also that of Parts of the Deity, other than conceptible, which no Man can avoid. So we have his Dream of a third [Page 93] part of a God, about which he so learnedly raves in his Dream, as to disprove, as effectual­ly, any God at all. For I appeal to what Sense he hath left himself, whether Power alone be God exclusive of Wisdom and Goodness? Then 'tis an inadequate, or a not compleat Notion of God, then by his profound reasoning, not eternal. No more are Father, Son, and Holy Ghost Parts, unless you be enamoured of the Bull, impartible Parts, that never were parted, nor ever can be. As what are necessa­rily united (tho unconfounded) cannot with­out Nonsense and Contradiction, be said to be parted. His Fiction, that what is from the eternal Father by necessary Emanation, cannot be eternal, but must have a beginning, is of the same stamp. He did not need when he writ, to have abandoned all Logick and common Sense, that would have told him relata sunt simul naturâ. His so confidently taking it for granted on all Hands, that all Infinites are equal, shews his little compass of Thought, and how unacquainted he is with the Difficulties of a Controversy, wherein yet he will be so over-meddlesome. Qui pauca respicit, &c. But who so bold as—? I leave him to compound that Difference with his abler Considerator, Whether one Inch and two Inches be equal? and so bid him good night.


BOOKS written by the Reverend Mr. JOHN HOWE.

1. THE Blessedness of the Righteous: The Va­nity of this Mortal Life, on Psal. 17. ver. 15. and Psal. 89. 47.

2. Delighting in God.

3. Living Temple.

4. Self-dedication discoursed in the Anniversary Thanksgiving of a Person of Honour for a great Deliverance.

5. Of Thoughtfulness for the Morrow. With an Appendix concerning the immoderate Desire of fore-knowing things to come.

6. Of Charity in reference to other Mens Sins.

7. The Redeemer's Tears wept over lost Souls, in a Treatise on Luke 19. 41, 42. With an Appendix, wherein somewhat is occasionally discoursed con­cerning the Sin against the Holy Ghost, and how God is said to will the Salvation of them that perish.

8. A Funeral Sermon for that Faithful and Labo­rious Servant of Christ, Mr. Richard Fairclough, (who deceased July 4. 1682. in the sixty first Year of his Age.)

9. A Sermon directing what we are to do after a strict Enquiry whether or no we truly love God.

[Page] 10. A Funeral Sermon for Mrs. Esther Sampson, the late Wife of Henry Sampson, Dr. of Physick, who died Nov. 24. 1689.

11. The Carnality of Religious Contention. In two Sermons Preach'd at the Merchants Lecture in Broadstreet.

12. A Calm and Sober Enquiry concerning the Possibility of a Trinity in the Godhead.

13. A Letter to a Friend concerning a Postscript to the Defence of Dr. Sherlock's Notion of the Tri­nity in Unity, relating to the Calm and Sober En­quiry upon the same Subject.

BOOKS Printed for Tho. Parkhurst, at the Bible and Three Crowns, the lower End of Cheapside.

A Body of Practical Divinity, consisting of a­bove one hundred seventy six Sermons on the lesser-Catechism composed by the Reverend Assem­bly of Divines at Westminster: With a Supplement of some Sermons on several Texts of Scripture. By Thomas Watson, formerly Minister at St. Stephen's-Walbrook, London.

A Paraphrase on the New Testament, with Notes, Doctrinal and Practical. By plainness and brevity fitted to the Use of Religious Families, in their daily Reading of the Scriptures; and of the younger and poorer sort of Scholars and Ministers, who want fuller Helps. With an Advertisement of Difficul­ties in the Revelations. By the late Reverend Mr. Richard Baxter.

Six hundred of Select Hymns and Spiritual Songs collected out of the Holy Bible. Together with a Catechism, the Canticles, and a Catalogue of Vertu­ous Women. The Three last hundred of Select Hymns collected out of the Psalms of David. By William Barton, A. M. late Minister of St. Martins in Leicester.

Spiritual Songs: Or Songs of Praise to Almighty God upon several Occasions. Together with the Song of Songs, which is Solomon's: First turn'd, then paraphased in English Verse. By John Mason.

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