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our upon creatures which is due to himself alone. But says Jehovah, “I am the Lord; that is my name :: and my glory will I not give to another, neither my praise to graven:

Having endeavoured to prove from scrip ture, that God is under no influence, aside from his own will, in any of his works, we now proceed

Secondly. To argue the same from the consideration, that, if he were, it would ren. der him unworthy of confidence. The general reason for this conclusion is, that what. ever influence is from any other source, than. God himself, will be to the hindrance of his; goodness, in the great affair of universal gov. ernment, rather than in aid of it. And if: God suffers himself to be diverted from the course, which infinite wisdom and benevo. lence prescribe,,or to be, in the least degree, impeded in the great work of doing good, it. is evident, that his rectitude is not perfect, and of course, that he is not to be implicit. Iy confidedin.. It is impossible to foresee, or to calculate, how much evil might be the con.. sequence of an influence, which, instead of helping on the good cause, should counter. act and retard it. It is completely safe, therefore, trusting in God, only upon supposition that he can be under: no such influence. And whatever influence is not from within him. self, must be liable to this objection. It is a.. gainst the best interest of the universe, rath. er tban subservient to it. Whatever streams

do not flow from the fountain of Deity are rather poisonous and baneful, than salutary, to the system. In no singte instance, there. fore, of administration in government, does God so regard other beings, as to be, in a proper sense, at all influenced by them. He does not so consider, or respect them, as to lessen the propriety of saying, that he s worketh all things after the counsel of his own will.” Their influence upon God carr be no other than the influence of the saw upon him that shaketh it, or of the rod upon him that lifteth it up. The determinations and proceedings of Providence are wholly from the will of God, as entirely as all streams are from the fountains, from which they issue; or as much as creation is from the hand of the Creator. That this is necessary to form the ground of such confidence as we are invited to place in God, remains to be pointed out in the course of the following observations. However, before we proceed to a direct process of argument, it may be well to premise, that the work of providence is one work,as it is designed to terminate in one great enda Accordingly, whatever influence favours a different end, tends to break the chain of providence, and to mutilate the work of God, and, eventually, to lessen the good, which must be, ultimately, designed by a being of infinite benevolence. Now, let us enquire, whether this evil would not be the consequence of God's acting under

any

indu ence, but that of his own will,

1. To be under the influence of one, who is incapable of giving good counsel and advice, is to give one's self up to imposition and abuse, and to consent to be misled. As apt as men are to be influenced by their fellow-men, and to be turned aside from fole lowing the dictates of their own understand ing and judgment ; still they never listen to one, who is known, or even supposed, to be inferior to themselves in wisdom, in respect, particularly to the subject under consideration. A man who has always been trained up to business in agricultural life, so as to have attained a good knowledge of the art of husbandry, will not hearken

to the advice of a man, who has always been employed in trade, if he presumes to teach him the best method of cultivating his lands. Should he do it, would not his family so far despair of his success in business, as to make little of no dependence upon him for procuring them a subsistence by his industry? If God is un. der influence from others, it must be from those, who can instruct him, who under stand the best plan of universal moral rule, and can supply a motive of conduct for the Deity, which he cannot derive from himself. If nothing better is to be expected with their influence, than without it, why should it be admitted ? God does right only when he does the best that can be done ; and if foreign influence does nothing towards pro. moting the cause, why should it be called for, or even allowed?A wise man, engaged

in a great undertaking, will not suffer his own views to be set aside by those of another less ingenious and knowing than himself. If he should do it, he would suffer reproach from himself, and every one besides, as committing to jeopardy the cause, in which he was embarked. If creatures have influence upon God, in respect to the measures of gov. ernment, it is because their wisdom, or vir. tue, is of some use to ensure the good end of government, and that, if it could not be had, the system would be less perfect, in the end. But what creature knows how things should be conducted to bring to pass the greatest good? “For who hath known the mind of the Lord? or who hath been his counsellor? Or who hath first given to him, and it shall be recompensed to him again ?" If the plan of universal rule is from God, and kņown to him only, it is plain, that if others pretend to influence the general order and course of things, it must be prejudicial, rather than advantageous; as, if a man, but * barely acquainted with the affairs of his own

family, should undertake to give direction to the wheels of national government. If a prince on his throne should make a counsellor of the meanest and most ignorant subject in his kingdom, and pursue such measures as he should advise, would not the com. munity have reason to be dissatisfied ? to deplore their connection with such a prince? and ever after to withhold their confidence from him? In like manner, if God, as govo

ernor of the world, may be influenced, in any measure, by creatures, who can have no acquaintance with the extent of the system, there is every reason why confidence should not be placed in him." If he needs counsel, he is unfit to hold all authority and power; and if he receives that which he does not need, and cannot be seasonable, nor helpful, he forfeits his character for integrity and wisdom. :. 2. To be under influence from those, who have other interests and purposes in view, than the common good, or have a design to something different from that noblest and most exalted end, for which Deity supports his throne and the order of his kingdom ; would be manifest treachery in the most High. He could not act under such influ. ence without betraying the interest and weal of his kingdom. If, therefore, God allows his 'creatures to influence him, it must be upon this principle, viz. that they have precisely the same thing in view, which he has. And upon this supposition, it is impossible to see, what room or occasion there can be for creature influence. If I am determined, upon the most weighty and decisive considerations, to beskow a bounty upon a certain needy person, and this sanie person after. wards appears, and most pathetically pleads the same considerations in his own favour, will it be conceived, that I act under the influence of that person in performing the charitable deed? This will not be pretended.

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