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tributes, whereof there are some vestiges and small scantlings in the creature, as being, wisdom, power, &c. amongst which his spirituality is to be reckoned. Now, both these sorts of attributes in God are not qualities in him distinct from himself, but they are God himself. God's infinity is God himself, his wisdom is himself; he is wisdom, goodness, 1 John i. 5. Neither are these attributes so many different things in God; but they are each of them God himself: for God swears by himself, Heb. vi. 13.; yet he swears by his holiness, Amos iv. 2. He creates by himself, Isa. xliv. 24.; yet he creates by his power, Rom. i. 20. Therefore God’s attributes are God himself. Neither are these attributes separable from one another; for though we, through weakness, must think and speak of them separately, yet they are all truly but the one infinite perfection of the divine nature, which cannot be separated therefrom, without denying that he is an infinitely perfect being. We have said that God is a spirit; but angels and the souls of men are spirits too. What then is the difference between them? Why, God is an infinite, eternal, and unchangeable spirit; but angels and souls are but finite, were not from eternity, and are changeable spirits. Now, these three, infinity, eternity, and immutability, are God’s incommunicable attributes, which we are next to explain. First, God is infinite. Infinity is the having no bounds or limits within which a thing is contained. God then is infinite, i. e. he is whatsoever he is without bounds, limits, or measure, Job xi. 7. “Canst thou by searching find out God? canst thou find out the Almighty unto perfection;' We cannot define the presence of God by any certain place, so as to say, Here he is, but not there; nor by any limits, so as to say, Thus far his being reacheth, and no further: but he is every where present, after a most inconceivable manner, even in the deepest darkness, and the closest recesses of privacy. He fills all the innumerable spaces that we can imagine beyond this visible world, and infinitely more than we can imagine. f Now God is infinite, (1.) In respect of his being: for of his nature our finite understandings cannot possibly form any adequate conception. This lies hid in rays of such bright and radiant glory, as must for ever dazzle the eyes of those who attempt to look into it. (2.) In respect of place; and

therefore he is every where present: “Can any man hide himself in secret places, that I shall not see him? saith the Lord: do not I fill heaven and earth? saith the Lord, Jer. xxiii. 24. (3.) In respect of time and duration: for the ages of his eternity cannot be numbered, “nor the number of his years searched out,” Job xxxvi. 26. (4.) In respect of all his communicable attributes. Thus the depth of his wisdom cannot be fathomed : ‘O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past finding out !” Rom. xi. 33. “His greatness is unsearchable, Psal. cxlv. 3. The extent of his power cannot be reached: “The thunder of his power who can understand?” Job xxvi. 14. We cannot understand his powerful thunder, one of the lowest displays of his majesty in our region, much less the utmost extent and force of his power, in its terrible effects, especially the power of his anger: “God is great, and we know him not.’ The treasures of the divine goodness cannot be inventoried : “O how great is thy goodness (says the Psalmist), which thou hast laid up for them that fear thee, which thou hast wrought for them that trust in thee before the sons of men l’ The brightness of God’s glory cannot be described; as a full discovery of it would quite overpower the faculties of any mortal in this imperfect state: for man is weak and unworthy of it, weak and could not bear it, guilty and could not but dread it: and therefore God “holdeth back the face of his throne, and spreadeth a cloud upon it,” Job xxvi. 9. With what propriety, then did he say to Moses, ‘Thou canst not see my face; for there shall no man see me, and live l’ Exod. XXXiii. 20. That God is infinite, is evident from the natural notions and dictates of the human mind. Hence the heathens, by the light of nature, attributed this perfection to the Divine Being. Thus one philosopher pronounced him to be a circle whose centre is every where, and whose circumference is no where; which another philosopher thus expressed in clearer terms, God is included in no place, and excluded from none. Which way soever ye turn, says Seneca, ye may take notice of God meeting you ; for nothing is void of

him; he himself fills all his works, and is present with the

whole creation. Remarkable also is the expression of the prince of Latin poets, Jovis omnia plena, ‘All things are

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full of God.” This also appears from several passages of scripture; as Deut. iv. 39. “The Lord is God in heaven above, and upon the earth beneath.’ 1 Kings viii. 27. * The heaven, and heaven of heavens, cannot contain thee,’ says Solomon in his prayer to God at the dedication of the temple. See also Psal. cxxxix. 4, &c. Jer. xxiii. 23, 24. Again, if God were not infinite and immense, many gross absurdities would follow from the contrary notion; such as, it is inconsistent with his universal providenceover the world, by which all things are preserved. ‘In him we live, move and have our being,’ Acts xvii. 27. As his providence is over all, his essence must be equally diffusive. It is inconsistent with his supreme perfection. No perfection can be wanting in God: and therefore a limited essence, which is an imperfection, cannot be attributed to him. It is also inconsistent with his immutability: For if he move and recede from one place to another, would he not thereby be mutable? while yet “with him there is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.” Last of all, it would be inconsistent with his omnipotence. That God can do every thing, is a notion settled in the minds of all; and his essence cannot be less or more confined than his power, and his power cannot be thought to extend farther than his essence. But some may be ready to say, Does not the scripture say, that God sits in heaven and dwells on high, that heaven is his throne; and does not the Lord's prayer teach us to say, Our Father which art in heaven? Now, how can this agree with his infinity or immensity ? I answer, God is indeed said to sit in heaven and to dwell on high; but he is no where said to dwell only in the heavens. It is the court of his majestic presence, not the prison of his essence. There is a three-fold presence of God: A glorious presence, which is peculiar to heaven: A gracious presence, which the saints enjoy on earth: And an essential presence, which is equally and alike in all places. Others may allege, that it is a disparagement to God, to say that he is essentially present in all places and with all creatures, even on the dunghill of the earth, and in the sordid sink of hell with the devils and the damned. To this 1 would only say, that it is a gross misapprehension of God, and an unaccountable measuring of him by ourselves, to imagine that he is capable of being infected by anything below. For he is a pure and spotless being. Whatever is nauseous to our senses cannot affect him. Darkness is uncomfortable to us: but the darkness and the light are all one to him. Wickedness may hurt a man; but if we multiply our transgressions, what can we do unto him? Job xxxv. 6, 8. To deny the immensity of God, says one, because of ill-scented places, is to measure God rather by the nicety of sense, than by the sagacity of reason. Secondly, The next incommunicable attribute of God is eternity. Hence he is called ‘the King eternal,’ 1 Tim. i. 17. We find other things called eternal. But the eternity of all things besides God is only their having no end, though they had a beginning. Thus angels and the souls of men are eternal, because they shall never have an end. The covenant of grace is eternal, because the mercies of it shall last for ever. The gospel is eternal, because the effects of it shall never wear away. The redemption by Christ is eternal, for the same reason. And the last judgment is so, because the consequences will be everlasting. But the eternity of God is his being without beginning and without end, Psal. xc. 2. “From everlasting to everlasting thou art God.” He was from everlasting before time, and will remain unto everlasting when time shall be no more; without beginning of life, or end of days, Thirdly, The next incommunicable attribute of God is unchangeableness. God is immutable, that is, always the same, without any alteration. Hence it is said, Jam. i. 17. “With whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.’ Mal. iii. 6. “I am the Lord, I change not.” God makes changes upon the creatures, but is liable to no change himself.” Though he alters his dispensations, yet not his nature; but, by one pure and constant act of his will and power, effects what changes he pleases. He is the same in all his perfections, constant to his intentions, steady to his purpose, unchangeably fixed and persevering in all his decrees and resolutions. When God is said to repent in scripture, Gen. vi. 6. 1 Sam. xv. 11. it denotes only a change of his outward conduct according to his infallible foresight and immutable will. He changes the way of his providential dealings according to the carriage and deportment of his creature, without changing his will, which is the rule of his providence. For otherwise that is an eternal truth, Num. xxiii. 19. “God is not a man, that he should lie; neither the son of man, that he should repent,’ 1 Sam. xv. 29. “The strength of Israel will not lie, nor repent; for he is not a man, that he should repent.” Having taken a short view of the incommunicable attributes of God, I proceed now to consider those that are called communicable, viz. his being, wisdom, power, holiness, justice, goodness, and truth. Now these things are in the creatures indeed, but they are in them in a finite way; but God is infinite, eternal, and unchangeable in these perfections, which no creature is or can be. First, There is his being which is his nature or essence and existence, which are but one thing in God. Creatures indeed have a being, but it is only a finite being, a being that has a beginning, a changeable one, and that may have an end. But God’s being is an infinite being, eternal and unchangeable. Hence he calls himself, Exod. iii. 14. I AM. THAT I AM. Hence we may infer, 1. That God is incomprehensible, and his essence infinite and unbounded, Psal. cxlv. 3. ‘His greatness is unsearchable.” It is not possible for a finite understanding to comprehend all that is in God; but the nature of God is a boundless ocean that hath no shore, Job xi. 7. “Canst thou by searching find out God? canst thou find out the Almighty to perfection ?’ And though God perfectly knows himself, that is because his understanding is infinite. 2. God is omnipresent and immense. He is present every where, but bounded no where, not only in respect of his virtue or influence, but of his essence. This clearly appears from the following passages, Psal. cxxxix. 7, 8, 9, 10. ‘Whither shall I go from thy Spirit 2 or whither shall I flee from thy presence? If I ascend up into heaven, thou art there : If I make my bed in hell, behold, thou art there: If I take the wings of the morning, and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea: even there shall thy hand lead me, and thy right hand shall hold me.” Jer. xxiii. 23, 24. ‘Am I a God at hand, saith the Lord, and not a God afar off? Can any hide himself in secret places, that I shall not see him 2 saith the Lord: do not I fill heaven and earth 2 saith the Lord, 1 Kings viii. 27. ‘Behold, the heaven, and heaven of heavens, cannot contain thee.’ He is there where the thief is stealing, the unclean person grati

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