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he says, that many who think they have attained to perfection wander from the grace they have, by which he means gifts; for he supposes that a man may have this grace, and yet his heart not purified, or be a Christian; for as for Christians, he says, though Satan wars against them without, they are inwardly safe by the power of God, and care not for Satan. In the twenty-seventh homily he indeed cites Hebrews vi. 4—6, and makes this remark upon it: "Behold, they that are enlightened, and have tasted, fall;" which nobody denies. And in the same page he has these words, "He that has these things," meaning gifts, "falls; but he that has charity, or love, anтwTOS EσTW, cannot fall."

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HILARY of Poictiers says many things which favour the doctrine of the saints' perseverance: he often speaks of faith as invincible and immoveable. "This is the mystery of divine revelation," says he *, "not only to say, but also to believe, that Christ is the Son of God: -this faith is the foundation of the church, through this faith the gates of hell against it are weak." Again+, "When he (Christ) asked Martha, praying for Lazarus, whether she believed that those that believed in him should never die; she spake out the faith of her own conscience, saying, Yea, Lord, I believe, &c. Confessio hæc æternitas est et fides ista non moritur, this confession is eternity, and this faith dies not." In another place he says, "We do not depend on .• uncertain and idle hopes, as mariners, who, sometimes sailing rather by wishes than in confidence, the wandering and unstable either drive or leave; but we have insuperabilis fidei spiritus dono unigeniti Dei permanens, the insuperable spirit of faith, through the gift of the only begotten of God,' abiding, and leading us by an unalterable course to the quiet haven." Much the same he says of hope as he does of faith: "By him" (Christ), he observes §, "we are brought into the hope of eternity, and in this hope we are not confounded; because this same hope, nobis fortitudinis turris est facta, is made unto us a tower of strength.' Through this hope we sustain the force of the devil and his snares, being hedged about tutissima fidei munitione, 'with the most safe munition of faith,' against him and his spiritual wickednesses." Hence he represents the case of believers to be such, that there need be no hesitation about enjoying eternal happiness. "The kingdom of heaven," says he ||, "which the prophets declared, John preached, our Lord professed was in himself, he wills should be hoped for, sine aliqua incerta voluntatis ambiguitate, without any doubtfulness of an uncertain will,' otherwise there is no justification by faith, if faith itself should be doubtful;" for, as he observes a little after, "In the sayings of God is truth, and all the efficiency of created † Ib. p. 78. Ib. 1. 12, p. 182. || Comment. in Matt. can. 5, p. 261, 262.

* De Trinitate, 1. 6, p. 74.
§ Enarr. in Psalm lx. p. 399, 400.

things is in the Word; wherefore neither what he has promised is doubtful, nor what he speaks is ineffectual." He further intimates, that such as are built upon the foundation, Christ, can never be moved or perish. Commenting on Matthew vii. 24, he says, "By the which the Lord makes himself the strong foundation of a high building, and that he who from him grows up into a sublime work, cannot be moved, either by rains, or floods, or wind; by rains, he means the allurements of flattering pleasures, and which sensibly slide into the open chinks, whereby faith is first made wet; after that, a run of torrents, that is, of motion, of grievous lusts, rush in; and then the whole force of the winds blowing about, rages; namely, the whole breath of devilish power is brought in; but the man built upon the foundation of the rock, insistet, nec moveri loco suo poterit, will stand, nor can he be moved out of his own place." Again, he says, "A house reared up by men's works does not abide; nor does that stand which is instituted by the doctrines of the world; nor will it be kept by the empty labour of our care; it is to be built up otherways, it is otherways to be kept: it is not to be begun upon the earth, nor upon the fluid sliding sand, but its foundation is to be laid upon the prophets and apostles; it is to be increased with living stones; it is to be held together by the corner-stone; it is to be built up by the increase of mutual connexion, into a perfect man, and into the measure of the body of Christ; and also to be adorned with the form and beauty of spiritual grace; this house, so built by God, that is, by his doctrines, non concidet, shall not fall." On these words, the Lord keepeth them that love him, he has this note ‡, "He will save by keeping them, that is, by reserving them to be partakers of the everlasting kingdom; but they are those who will fear, pray, and love." Once more, he observes §, that "this is the constitution of invariable truth, in the beginning of the words of God is truth, that the new man, regenerated in Christ, vivat deinceps æternus, may henceforth live eternal,' according to the image of the eternal God, that is, of the heavenly Adam.”




BASIL gives plain intimations, that such who are redeemed by Christ, and are truly gracious souls, shall never perish. "He," says he!, that has chosen the narrow and laborious way, before the smooth and easy one, shall not see everlasting corruption; namely, the affliction that shall endure for ever." And a little after, "Persuasions of knowledge, falsely so called, give occasion of death to them that receive them; which death he shall not see who is redeemed by him, whom it hath pleased by the foolishness of preaching, to save them Enarr. in Psalm cxxvi. p. 550. § In Psalm exix. Res, p. 519, 520.

*Comment. in Matt. can. 6, p. 266. In Psalm exliv. p. 638.

Homil. in Psalm xlviii. p. 282.



that believe." Virtue, grace, righteousness, holiness, faith, and suchlike, he represents as what always remain, and can never be destroyed. Virtue," he says, "is the only possession, avaḍapetov, that cannot be taken away,' and continues with a man living and dying." Again †, "Holiness and righteousness, which are brought in the room of them (sins), are easy and light; Kaι OVK Eldoтa kvμaσi καλύφθηναι τισι, and which cannot be covered or borne down by any floods." And elsewhere he observes, that "the preaching of the gospel has great power of leading and drawing unto salvation, and every soul is held by its immoveable doctrines, and is by grace confirmed προς την αδαλευτον εις Χριστον πιστιν, in the unshaken faith of Christ." And in another places the question is asked, "What is the property of faith?" The answer is, "An undoubted full assurance of the truth of the divine word, which by no reason induced by natural necessity, or having the appearance of piety, diaσadevoμevn, can be moved." Once more he observes, "that because God is in the midst of his own city, he gives it to aσaλevTOV, 'stability,' whether this name of a city agrees with the Jerusalem that is above, or the church which is below." Vossius refers us to several of the homilies of this father, as militating against this doctrine of the saints' perseverance; but in some of them that are referred to, there are very strong expressions in favour of it; in the first of them he thus says**, "These words, I have loved because the Lord hath heard the voice of my prayer, seem to be equivalent to the words of the apostle, and to be said with the same affection by the prophet as by the apostle, Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, &c. Therefore I have loved all those things, knowing that I can bear those dangers for the sake of godliness." And a little after, says he, "Not that I can by my own power strive against those sorrows; but because I have called upon the name of the Lord." In the second stands this passage ++, "Prudence itself will give to one that builds a house to lay the foundation upon a rock; that is, to found it in the faith of Christ, ωστε ασειστον διαμενειν, that it may abide immoveable and firm." And in the last of them, he observes ‡‡, "that we are not angels, but men, and fall and rise again, and that often in the same hour;" and instances in David and Peter; and of the latter he says, that "though he was a rock, yet he was not a rock as Christ; for Christ truly is the immoveable rock; but Peter so, because of the rock." In the third of them he does indeed say §§, that "sin abolishes the grace given us by the washing of regeneration; and that sin precedes the loss of grace, which is given through the humanity of our Lord Jesus Christ." But what he means by that grace is not very evident. And in the fourth ||| he says, that "the Spirit must needs excel them that receive, and are sanctified by him, when he comes; but are corrupted, he leaving them; he himself always being the fountain of everlasting life." But then this must be understood of *Homil. de Legend. Libr. Gentil. p. 575.

Ib. in Psalm xliv. p. 254. § Moral. c. 22, p. 386.
Hist. Pelag. 1. 6, thes. 12, p. 566.

tt Ib. in Princip. Prov. p. 461.

§§ Ib. in aliquot Script. loc. p. 546.

Ib. non Adbærend. Reb. Secular. p. 563.
Hom. in Psalm xlv. p. 270.
**Homil. in Psalm cxiv. p. 307.
Ib. de Pœnitentia, p. 618, 619.
Contr. Eunom. 1. 5, p. 139.

such who receive him not aright, for, as he elsewhere * expresses himself, "The saints receive water springing up unto eternal life, which όπερ γίγνεται εν τοις καλως λαβουσι, in them that receive it rightly, it becomes so.

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GREGORY of Nazianzum has several expressions in his writings which favour the doctrine of the saints' perseverance. He says †, "A man may possess such a habit of virtue, wote kai oxedov advvatov, γενεσθαι την περι τα γείρω φοραν, so as that it is almost impossible that he should be carried away to that which is evil." And as for the grace of faith, he says, "that only of all things is avaλorov inexpugnable." And elsewhere §, for the consolation of the people of God under reproaches and afflictions, he thus expresses himself; "Are we reproached? Let us bless them that do ill. Are we spit upon? Let us study to have honour from God. Are we made to fly? Not from God, τουτ' ουκ αφαιρετον γε των παντων μονον, this alone of all things cannot be taken away." With what exultation and joy does he express himself in a view of interest in Christ! "O, my Christ," says he, "thou art my portion, which to have is better than to have all things else, μονον βεβαιον κτηματων και ελευθερον, this is the only firm and free possession." Those who fall off from a profession of faith, and desert the interest of Christ and religion, he represents ¶ as such "who never were sown επι την στερεαν πέτραν και ασειστον, upon the firm and unshaken rock, but upon dry and barren land; these are they who come to the word in a superficial way, and are of little faith; and because they have no depth of earth, suddenly arise, and looking to please others, after a short assault of the evil one, and a little temptation and heat, are withered and die." Vossius ** refers to a passage in this writer ++ as militating against this doctrine; in which Gregory advises such as are cleansed "to keep themselves, lest the issue of blood should flow again, and they not be able to lay hold on Christ; and such who have been made whole to sin no more, lest a worse thing should befall them, and should appear to be evil, after having received a great and considerable benefit; and such who had heard that great voice, Lazarus, come forth; and were come forth, to take heed lest they die again, when it would be uncertain, whether they would be raised again until the last and common resurrection." These expressions, it must be owned, do seem to intimate, that persons may be purged, and yet perish; be made whole, and yet lost; be quickened, and yet die again. But then they must be imputed to this author's great zeal for the good of souls, and care of them, and concern for them, and to his earnestness in cautioning of them against sin, and advising them to that which is good.

* Homil. in Psalm xxviii. p. 173.

Ib. orat. 4, p. 133. || Ib. p. 252.

Greg. Nazianzen. orat. 31, p. 508, tom. i. § Ib. Carmen. Jambic. 21, p. 234, tom. ii. **Hist. Pelag. 1. 6, thes. 12, p. 566.

Ib. orat. 3, p. 53, tom. i.
+ Orat. 40, p. 662, tom. i.



GREGORY of Nyssa gives plain intimations of the security of the saints, and the perpetuity of grace where it is once implanted. Having taken notice of Balaam's being sent for to curse Israel, which he was not able to do, he makes this remark on it *; "Hence we understand that no enchantment is effectual against those who live virtuously; but such being satiated through divine assistance, maσns υπερισχύειν επιβουλης, VпEрισXVEL EжBоvans, prevail over every snare." And in another place he observes, that "the earth first apostatized through sin, but now, through the knowledge of God has a firm standing; we are all God's earth, who were first unstable in that which is good, and therefore became a curse; but afterwards, being delivered from the curse, we again obtain a standing in that which is good." And a little after, he makes this observation on Psalm xcvii. 1, "Beautifully he calls the souls of them that show το εδραιον τε και αμετάθετον, ‘firmness and immoveableness in temptations, isles;' whom the salt waters of wickedness surround on every side, and yet dash not against them with so much strength ως και σαλον τινα τω παγίω της αρετης εμποιήσαι, as to cause any fluctuation in the firmness of virtue." Psalm lii. 8 he explains of such an one "that is rooted in the house of God as a fruitful olive tree, και το εδραιον τε και αμετακίνητον του κατα την πίστιν στερεώματος εν εαυτω βεβαιωσας, and has the firm and immoveable ground of faith established in himself." He more than once represents the grace of faith as permanent and lasting. The good of the sons of men, which Solomon desired to see, he says §, appears to him to be no other than the work of faith, whose energy is common to all; being equally set before them that will, and is avтodvvaμos Kai diapkws in Swŋ пapaμevovσa, all-powerful, and abides in life continually." And elsewhere, speaking of the saints' spiritual armour, among other things he observes, that "the shield, which is a piece of armour that covers, is, n appayns mσтis, faith that cannot be broken." He says the same of all other graces: explaining the beams of the house in Cant. i. 17, "These," says he, "should be the virtues, which do not admit the floods of temptations within themselves, σTeppaι Te ovσai kaι avevootol, 'being firm, solid, and not giving way,' and preserve in temptations from being softened into wickedness." And in another place**, says he, "He describes the house of virtue, whose matter for covering is cedar and cypress, which are not susceptible of rottenness and corruption ; by which he expresses το μονιμον τε και αμετάβλητον της προς το αγαθόν σχέσεως, the permanency and immutability of the habit to that which is good." Now all this he ascribes, not to the *Greg. Nyssen. de Vita Mosis, vol. i. p. 250. Ib. c. 13, p. 339. Ib. 8, p. 463.


Ib. in Psalm, c. 9, p. 316. § Ib. in Eccles. homil. 2, p. 395. Ib. in Cant. homil. 4, p. 523.

** Ib. homil. 6, p. 557.

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