Sivut kuvina

when he walks his steps make a noise just like a person walking with iron shoes on a stone pavement. Another particular circumstance may be mentioned, which is, that when any spirits newly arrived from the world entered his chamber to see and converse with him, he was accustomed to call one of those magical spirits, who by the power of fantasy could produce various appearances of beauty and ornament, and who in an instant would deck out his chamber with handsome furniture, and tapestry with roses worked in it, and a book-case also in the middle of it; but no sooner did his company leave him, than all these appearances vanished, and the former coat of plaster and bare walls returned this however only happened when he was in his former state.

798. Concerning CALVIN I have had the following account. I. When first he entered the spiritual world, he thought no other but that he was still in the world where he was born; and although he was told by the angels, who were associated with him at his first coming, that he was now in their world, and not in the former, he replied "I have the same body, the same hands, and the like senses:" but the angels instructed him, that he was then in a substantial body, and that before he was not only in the same substantial body, but also in a material body, which invested the substantial; that he had cast off the material body, and retained the substantial, by virtue of which man is man. This he at first understood; but the day following he relapsed into his former belief, that he was still in the world where he was born; for he was a sensual man, believing nothing but what he drew in from the objects of the bodily senses, and this being his quality, he framed all the tenets of his faith from his own understanding, and not from the Word; he made indeed quotations from the Word, but this was only to engage the favour and approbation of the vulgar. II. After this first period, having left the angels, he wandered

about, enquiring where he might meet with such spirits as in ancient times had believed in PREDESTINATION; and he was informed that they were removed to a distant place, where they were close shut up and kept concealed, and that there was no way open to their abode but from the hinder side under the earth; but that the disciples of Godoschalchus still wandered about at large, and sometimes assembled together in a place, which is called in the spiritual tongue Pyris. On receiving this information, and being desirous to associate with them, he was conducted to the place of assembly, where some of them were standing; and when he came amongst them, he was in the delight of his heart, and was linked in an interior friendship with them. III. But when the followers of Godoschalchus were led away to be confined with their brethren in the cavern, he grew weary of himself, so that he wandered here and there in quest of an asylum, and at length was received into a certain society consisting of simple-minded spirits, among whom there were also some of a religious character; but when he discovered that they neither knew nor could at all comprehend the doctrine of predestination, he betook him self to one corner of the society, and there lay concealed for a considerable time, without ever opening his mouth on any subject relating to the church: this was of providential appointment, that he might recede from his error respecting predestination, and that the numbers might be filled up of those, who since the Synod of Dort had adhered to that detestable heresy, all of whom were successively removed to their associates to be confined in the cavern. IV. But when at

last inquiry was made after him by the modern predestinarians, and when on searching for him he was discovered in the extreme confines of a certain society, which consisted merely of simple-minded spirits, he was called forth from his retirement, and conducted to a certain governor, who had drank of the same dregs of false doctrine: this governor re

ceived him into his house, and protected him; and in this situation he continued until the new heaven was begun to be established by the Lord, at which time, because the governor his protector with all his band of associates was cast out, Calvin betook himself to a certain house inhabited by harlots, and there remained for some time. V. But as he then enjoyed the liberty of wandering about, and also of approaching nearer to the place of my abode, it was permitted me to converse with him: and first I talked to him of the new heaven which is at this day constructing of those who acknowledge the Lord alone to be the God of heaven and earth, according to His own words, Matt. xxviii. 18; observing, that these believe that He and the Father are One, John x. 30; and that He is in the Father, and the Father in Him; and that whoso seeth and knoweth Him, seeth and knoweth the Father also, John xiv. 6 to 11; and that thus there is one God in the church as in heaven. On hearing what I said, he at first, according to his usual manner, was silent for some time, but in about half an hour he broke silence and said, "Was not Christ a man, the son of Mary, who was married to Joseph ? how can a man be worshipped as God?" And I replied, "Is not Jesus Christ our Redeemer and Saviour, both God and Man?" To which he answered, "He is God and Man, yet still Divinity is not His, but the Father's." "And where then is Christ," asked I. He said, "He is in the lowest parts of heaven;" which he confirmed by His humiliation before the Father, and by suffering Himself to be crucified. He then added some scoffing expressions against the worship of Christ, which at that instant entered his memory from the world, and which were in general to this effect, "That such worship is nothing else but idolatry ;" he was desirous to condemn it in more blasphemous terms, but the angels who were with me closed his lips. In answer to what he had urged, and instigated by a warm zeal for his conversion, I said, that

the Lord our Saviour is not only God and Man, but also that in Him God is Man, and Man is God; and this I confirmed by the words of Paul, "That in Him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily," Coloss. ii. 9; and by what John says, "That He is the True God and Eternal Life,” 1 Epist. v. 20, 21; and also by these words of the Lord Himself, "That it is the will of the Father, that every one who believeth in the Son should have eternal life, and that whosoever believeth not, shall not see life, but the anger of God abideth on him," John iii. 36, chap. vi. 40; and moreover by what is declared in the confession of Faith, called the Athanasian Creed, that in Christ God and Man are not two but one, and that they are in one person, like the soul and body in man. On hearing this reasoning, he replied, "What are all these passages which thou hast quoted from the Word, but vain and empty sounds! Is not the Word the book of all heresies? and is it not thus like vanes on the tops of houses and ships, which turn to every wind that blows? It is PREDESTINATION ALONE which fixes and determines all points of religion; here they have their habitation, and this is the tabernacle of their congregation; and the faith that is effective of justification and salvation is the sanctuary and holy of holies in that tabernacle. Is any man possessed of free-will in spiritual concerns? Are not all things appertaining to salvation of free grace? All arguments then which oppose this reasoning, and so oppose predestination, sound in my ears no otherwise than as eructations from the stomach; and this being the case I have thought with myself, that a temple where any other doctrine is taught, even though derived from the Word, is with its congregation like a den, in which sheep and wolves are confined together; the wolves however, are muzzled by the laws of civil justice to prevent them from assaulting the sheep: by the sheep I mean the predestinate. But I will make confession of my faith, which is this, "There is a God, and He

is omnipotent, and there is no salvation for any but those, who are elected and predestinated by God the Father, and every one else is consigned to his lot, that is, to his fate.'" On hearing these words, in the warmth of zeal I rejoined, "Thou talkest impiously, begone thou wicked spirit! Dost thou not know, since thou art in the spiritual world, that there is a heaven and that there is a hell, and that predestination implies that some are appointed for heaven, and some for hell? Canst thou then form to thyself any other idea of God, than as of a tyrant, who admits his favourites into his city, but condemneth the rest to a slaughter-house? Be ashamed then, and blush for thy doctrine." After this I read to him what is written in the FORMULA CONCORDIE, (a book containing the doctrines of the Evangelical Protestants,) on the Worship of the Lord, and on Predestination: on the WORSHIP OF THE LORD, as follows: "That it is a damnable idolatry, if the trust and faith of the heart be placed on Christ, not only according to His Divine, but also according to His human nature, and if the honour of adoration be directed to both" and on PREDESTINATION, as follows: "That Christ did not die for all men, but only for the elect. That God hath created the greatest part of mankind for eternal damnation, and is not willing that they should be converted and live. That the clect and regenerate cannot lose faith and the Holy Spirit, although they commit every kind of the most enormous sin and wickedness. But that they who are not elect, are necessarily condemned, and cannot possibly attain salvation, even though they should be a thousand times baptized, and should come every day to the eucharist, and should besides lead as holy and unblameable lives as is possible to do," p. 837, 838, of the Leipsic edition, published in the year 1756. After reading these passages, I asked him, Whether the sentiments contained in that book were derived from his doctrine, or not? And he replied, That they were derived from his doctrine, but that he did not remember whether those very 0 o


« EdellinenJatka »