This is the first major critical edition of Locke’s enquiry into the foundations of Christianity. Locke maintains that the essentials of the faith. John Locke said that the Word is through Jesus Christ. This is reasonable to He never taught that Christianity can be found by human reasoning. This does not. The Reasonableness of Christianity, as Delivered in the Scriptures. John Locke. Sold by Johnson and Co. And D. Eaton ().
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The little satisfaction and consistency that is to be found, in most of the systems of divinity I have met with, made me betake myself to the sole reading of the scriptures to which christuanity all appeal for the understanding the Christian Religion.
What from thence, by an attentive and unbiassed search, I have received, Reader, I here deliver to thee. If by this my labour thou receivest any light, or confirmation in the truth, join with me in thanks to the Father of lights, for his condescension to our understandings. If upon a fair and unprejudiced examination, thou findest I have mistaken the sense and tenour of the Gospel, I beseech thee, as a true Christian, in the spirit of the Gospel, which is that of charity, and in the words of sobriety, set me right, in the doctrine of salvation.
To understand, therefore, what we are restored to by Jesus Christ, we must consider what the scriptures show we lost by Adam. This I thought worthy of a diligent and unbiassed search: And, indeed, both sides will be suspected to have trespassed this way, against the written word of God, by any one, who jkhn but take it to be locle collection of writings, designed by God, for the instruction of the illiterate bulk of mankind, in the way to salvation; and therefore, generally, and in necessary points, to be understood in the plain direct meaning of the words and phrases: To one that, thus unbiassed, reads the scriptures, what Adam fell from is visible was the state of perfect obedience, which is called justice in the New Testament; though the word, which in the original signifies justice, be translated righteousness: The penalty annexed to the breach of the law, with the sentence pronounced by God upon it, show this.
Chrristianity penalty stands thus, Gen. This shows, that the state of paradise was a state of immortality, of life without end; which he lost that very day that he eat: Death then entered, and showed his face, which before was shut out, and reasonablenes known. I shall say nothing more here, how far, in the apprehensions of men, this consists with the justice and goodness of God, having mentioned it above: And would any one think himself fairly dealt with, that was so used?
To this, they would have it be also a state of necessary sinning, and provoking God in every action that men do: Could a worthy man be supposed to put such terms upon the obedience of his subjects?
Much less can the righteous God be supposed, as a punishment of one sin, wherewith he is displeased, to put man under the necessity of sinning continually, and so multiplying the provocation. The reason of this strange interpretation, we shall perhaps find, in some mistaken places of the Edition: I must confess, by death here, I can understand nothing but a ceasing to be, the losing of all actions of life and sense.
Such a death came on Adam, and all his posterity, by his first disobedience in paradise; under which death they should have lain for ever, had it not reasonablebess for the redemption by Jesus Christ.
The Reasonableness of Christianity – Hardcover – John Locke – Oxford University Press
This shows, that paradise was a place chrisrianity bliss, as well as immortality; without drudgery, and without sorrow. But, when man was turned out, he was exposed to the toil, anxiety, and frailties of this mortal life, which should end in the reasonablenees, out of which he was made, and to which he should return; and then have no more life or sense, than the dust had, out of which he was made.
As Adam was rsasonableness out of paradise, so all his posterity were born out of it, out of the reach of the tree of life; all, like their father Adam, in a state of mortality, void of the tranquility and bliss of paradise. Had he taken from mankind any thing that was their right, or did he put men in a state of misery, worse than not being, without any fault or demerit of their own; this, indeed, would be hard to reconcile with the notion we have of justice; and much more with the goodness, and other attributes of the supreme Being, which he has declared of himself; and reason, as well as revelation, must acknowledge to be in him; unless we will confound good and evil, God and Satan.
But that reasonablenes a temporary life, as we now have, with all its frailties and ordinary miseries, is better than no being, is evident, by the high value we put upon it ourselves.
And therefore, though all die in Adam, yet none are truly punished, but for their own deeds. And he tells his disciples, that when he comes again with his angels, in the glory of his Father, that then he will render to every one according to his works, Matt. Adam being thus turned out of paradise, and all his posterity born out of it, the consequence of it was, that all men christiajity die, and remain under death for ever, and so be utterly lost.
From this estate of death, Jesus Christ restores all mankind to life; 1 Cor. Then they recover from death, which otherwise all mankind should have continued under, lost for ever; as appears by St. Christ will bring them all to life again; and then they shall be put every one upon his own trial, and receive judgment, as he is found to be righteous, or not.
And the righteous, as our Saviour says, Matt. Nor shall any one miss it, who Edition: On the other side, it seems the unalterable purpose of the divine justice, that no unrighteous person, no one that is guilty of any breach of the law, should be in paradise: And this is so conformable to the eternal and established law of right and wrong, that it is spoken of too, as if it could not be otherwise.
James gives a reason, chap. Here then we have the standing and fixed measures of life and death.
Immortality and bliss, belong to the righteous; those who have lived in an exact conformity to the law of God, are out of the reach of death; but an exclusion from paradise and loss of immortality is the portion of loc,e of all those who have any way broke that law, and failed of a complete obedience to it, by the guilt of any one transgression. And thus mankind by the law are put upon the issues of life or death, as they are righteous or unrighteous, just, or unjust; i. As appears by Rom.
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If you will admit them to forsake reason in one point, why not in another? Where will you stop? The law therefore was, as St. Paul tells us, Rom.
This then being the case, that whoever is guilty of any sin should certainly die, and cease to be; the benefit of life, restored by Christ at the resurrection, would have been no great advantage, for as much as, here again, death must have seized upon all mankind, because all have sinned; for the wages of sin is everywhere death, as well after as before the resurrection, if God had not found out a way to justify some, i. The better to understand the law of faith, it will be convenient, in the first place, to consider the law of works.
The law of works then, in short, is that law which requires perfect obedience, without any remission or abatement; so that, by that law, a man cannot be just, or justified, without an exact performance of every tittle. Where this law of works was to be found, the New Testament tells us, viz. Paul so often styles the law, without any other distinction, Rom.
Nay, whatever God requires any-where to be done, without making any allowance for faith, that is a part of the law of works: Paul found some ready to infer, Rom. God forbid; yea we establish the law. Nor can it be otherwise: For there could Edition: Where there is no law, there is no sin; all are righteous equally, with or without faith.
The rule, therefore, of right, is the same that ever it was; the obligation to observe it is also the same: Those that obey are righteous; those that in any part disobey, are unrighteous, and must not expect life, the reward of righteousness. But, by the law of faith, faith is allowed to supply the defect of full obedience: Only here we must take notice, that when St.
Paul says, that the gospel establishes the law, he means the moral part of the law of Moses; for that he could not mean the ceremonial, or political part of it, is evident, by what I quoted out of him just now, where he says, That the gentiles do, by nature, the things contained in the law, their consciences bearing witness.
As for the rest, St. Paul tells the Galatians, chap. And our Saviour himself, in this gospel sermon on the mount, tells them, Matt. But they are all precepts of cchristianity moral law, which he re-inforces.
The Reasonableness of Christianity, as Delivered in the Scriptures
What should become of the ritual law, he tells the woman of Samaria, in these words, John iv. But the true worshippers shall worship the Edition: Thus then, as to the law, in short: But christian believers have the privilege to be under the law of faith too; which is that law, whereby God justifies a man for believing, though by his works he be not just or righteous, i.
God alone does or can justify, or make just, those who by their works are not so: This faith, for which God justified Abraham, what was it? It was the believing God, when he engaged his promise in the covenant he made with him.
This will be plain to any one, who considers these places together, Gen. He staggered not at the promise of God, through unbelief; but was strong in faith giving glory to God.
And being fully persuaded, that what he had promised he was also able to perform. And therefore it was imputed to him for righteousness. Whereby it is plain is meant the firmness of our faith, without staggering, and not the believing the same propositions that Abraham believed; viz. This was what Abraham believed, and was counted to him for righteousness.
The law of faith then, in short, is for every one christiajity believe what God requires him to believe, as a condition of the covenant he makes with him: This the apostle intimates in the close here, ver. What we are now required to believe to obtain eternal life, is plainly set down in the gospel. John tells us, John iii. Jesus saith unto her, I that speak unto thee, am he.
The woman then went into the city, and saith to the men, come see a chtistianity that hath told me all things that ever I did: So when the Samaritans were come unto him, many more believed because of his words, and said to the woman, We believe not any longer, because of thy saying; for we have heard ourselves, and we know that this man is truly the Saviour of the world, the Messiah.
By which place it is plain, that believing on the Son is the believing that Jesus was the Messiah; giving credit to the miracles he did, and the profession he made of himself. For those who are said to believe on him, for the saying of the woman, ver. Thou hast the words of eternal life. And we reqsonableness, and are sure, that Edition: This was the faith which distinguished them from apostates and unbelievers, and was sufficient to continue them in the rank of apostles: Peter, that our Sayiour said, he would build his church, Matt.
To convince men of this, he did his miracles; and their assent to, or not assenting to this, made them to be, or not to be, of his church; believers, or not believers: If thou be the Messiah, tell us plainly.
Jesus answered them, I told you, and ye believed not: This is a pf and an antichrist; whosoever abideth not in the doctrine of the Messiah, has not God. And therefore, drawing to a close of his gospel, and showing the end for which he writ it, he has these words: Accordingly the great question among the jews was, whether he were the Messiah or no?
The first glad tidings of his birth, brought christinaity the shepherds by an angel, was in these words: Our O discoursing with Martha about the means of attaining eternal life, saith to her, John xi.
And thus Andrew and Philip express it: