De Moor on God's Essential Vindicatory Righteousness: Against the Socinians, Part 3

Philippus van Limborch

Ἀνασκευὴ/refutation follows Κατασκευὴν, constructive reasoning; and so the order of Disputation requires that, after we have thus sufficiently discharged our duty in the confirmation of the Thesis that we had undertaken to prove, we pass to the resolution of the Arguments that are wont to be alleged for the opposite opinion. But, as I, studying brevity, have passed by a great many Exceptions of those thinking things diverse from our reasons; so these little pages, which have now begun excessively to increase beyond expectation, urge me to put down my pen. With which I think that I am the more easily able to comply, since all the things that are wont to be objected here have not only been called to candid examination, but have been abundantly answered by Men most celebrated, and most illustriously worthy of the Reformed Church, HOORNBEECK, Socinianismo confutato, tome 2, book III, chapter I, section I, pages 508-533; TURRETIN, Theologiæ Elencticæ, locus III, question XIX, pages 259-266, and de Satisfactione Christi, Disputations I, II, which treat of the Necessity of the Satisfaction of Christ; VOETIUS, Disputationum theologicarum, part I, pages 358, 360-364: whom I wish to be thoroughly consulted upon this matter. Nevertheless, lest anyone shoud desire our labor on this aspect, on those things that are set in opposition by Socinus, Prælectionibus, chapter XVI, part I of Disputatione de Servatore, chapter I, and part III de Servatore, chapter I, and by Crellius, libro de Attributis Dei, chapter XXIII, etc., whose reasons Limborch has gathered into one, Theologiam Christianam, book II, chapter XII, § 27-37; it will be helpful to observe these few things. Namely, a distinction is to be made between the Attributes of God and the egress of the same, the property and its exercise, the δύναμιν/faculty/ability and the actum secundum, exercise/function. Between Right and Righteousness; then between a Right private and public, dominical and judicial, what only has regard to the pleasure and advantage of a lord and what pertains to honesty and duty. In addition, between a man private and constituted in public authority. It is to be observed, that God here is in the role, not only of an unrestrained Lord, or of an offended party, but of Judge. That our sins do not have the relation of a simple pecuniary debt, but of a crime. That necessity in God is not brute and purely physical, but ethical and rational: that a not only is a thing said to be Free, unto which one holds himself ἀδιαφόρως/indifferently; but also which he does willingly, or out of the liberty of spontaneity.

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