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The London Baptist Confession of Faith (1689)

Previous: OF THE HOLY SCRIPTURES

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CHAPTER 4 - OF CREATION

In the beginning it pleased God the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, (1) for the manifestation of the glory of His eternal power, (2) wisdom, and goodness, to create or make the world, and all things therein, whether visible or invisible, in the space of six days, and all very good. (3)

1) Jn 1:2-3; Heb 1:2; Job 26:13.
2) Rom 1:20.
3) Col 1:16; Gen 1:31.

After God hath made all other creatures, He created man, male and female, (4) with reasonable and immortal souls, (5) rendering them fit unto that life to God for which they were created; being made after the image of God, in knowledge, righteousness, and true holiness; (6) having the law of God written in their hearts, (7) and power to fulfill it, and yet under a possibility of transgressing, being left to the liberty of their own will, which was subject to change. (8)

4) Gen 1:27.
5) Gen 2:7.
6) Ecc 7:29; Gen 1:26.
7) Rom 2:14-15.
8) Gen 3:6.

Besides the law written in their hearts, they received a command not to eat of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, (9) which whilst they kept, they were happy in their communion with God, and had dominion over the creatures. (10)

9) Gen 2:17.
10) Gen 1:26, 28.

CHAPTER 5 - OF DIVINE PROVIDENCE

God the good creator of all things, in His infinite power and wisdom, doth uphold, direct, dispose, and govern all His creatures and things, (1) from the greatest even to the least, (2) by His most wise and holy providence, to the end for which they were created, according unto His infallible foreknowledge, and the free and immutable counsel of His own will; to the praise of the glory of His wisdom, power, justice, infinite goodness, and mercy. (3)

1) Heb 1:3; Job 38:11; Isa 46:10-11; Ps 135:6.
2) Matt 10:29-31.
3) Eph 1:11.

Although in relation to the foreknowledge and decree of God, the first cause, all things come to pass immutably and infallibly; (4) so that there is not anything befalls any by chance, or without His providence; (5) yet by the same providence He ordereth them to fall out according to the nature of second causes, either necessarily, freely, or contingently. (6)

4) Acts 2:23.
5) Prov 16:33.
6) Gen 8:22.

God, in His ordinary providence maketh use of means, (7) yet is free to work without, (8) above, (9) and against them (10) at His pleasure.

7) Acts 27:31, 44; Isa 55:10-11.
8) Hosea 1:7.
9) Rom 4:19-21.
10) Dan 3:27.

The Almighty power, unsearchable wisdom, and infinite goodness of God, so far manifest themselves in His providence, that His determinate counsel extendeth itself even to the first fall, and all other sinful actions both of angels and men; (11) and that not by a bare permission, which also He most wisely and powerfully boundeth, and otherwise ordereth and governeth, (12) in a manifold dispensation to His most holy ends; (13) yet so, as the sinfulness of their acts proceedeth only from the creatures, and not from God, who, being most holy and righteous, neither is nor can be the author or approver of sin. (14)

11) Rom 11:32-34; 2 Sam 24:1; 1 Chron21:1.
12) 2 Ki 19:28; Ps 76:10.
13) Gen 1:20; Isa 10:6-7, 12.
14) Ps 50:21; 1 Jn 2:16.

The most wise, righteous, and gracious God doth oftentimes leave for a season His own children to manifold temptations and the corruptions of their own hearts, to chastise them for their former sins, or to discover unto them the hidden strength of corruption and deceitfulness of their hearts, that they may be humbled; and to raise them to a more close and constant dependence for their support upon Himself; and to make them more watchful against all future occasions of sin, and for other just and holyends. (15) So that whatsoever befalls any of His elect is by His appointment, for His glory, and their good. (16)

15) 2 Chron 32:25-26, 31; 2 Cor 12:7-9.
16) Rom 8:28.

As for those wicked and ungodly men whom God, as a righteous judge, for former sin doth blind and harden; (17) from them He not only withholdeth His grace, whereby they might have been enlightened in their understanding,and wrought upon their hearts; (18) but sometimes also withdraweth the gifts which they had, (19) and exposeth them to such objects as their corruption makes occasion of sin; (20) and withal, gives them over to their own lusts, the temptations of the world, and the power of Satan, (21) whereby it comes to pass that they harden themselves, under those means which God useth for the softening of others. (22)

17) Rom 1:24-26, 28; 11:7-8.
18) Deut 29:4.
19) Matt 13:12.
20) Deut 2:30; 2 Ki 8:12-13.
21) Ps 81:11-12; 2 Thes 2:10-12.
22) Ex 8:15, 32; Isa 6:9-10; 1 Pet 2:7-8.

As the providence of God doth in general reach to all creatures, so after a more special manner it taketh care of His church, and disposethof all things to the good thereof. (23)

1 Tim 4:10; Amos 9:8-9; Isa 43:3-5.

CHAPTER 6 - OF THE FALL OF MAN, OF SIN, AND OF THE PUNISHMENT THEREOF

Although God created man upright and perfect, and gave him a righteous law, which had been unto life had he kept it, and threatened death upon the breach thereof, (1) yet he did not long abide in this honour; Satan using the subtlety of the serpent to subdue Eve, then by her seducing Adam, who, without any compulsion, did willlfully transgress the law of their creation, and the command given unto them, in eating the forbidden fruit, (2) which God was pleased, according to His wise and holy counsel to permit, having purposed to order it to His own glory.

1) Gen 2:16-17.
2) Gen 3:12-13; 2 Cor 11:3.

Our first parents, by this sin, fell from their original righteousness and communion with God, and we in them whereby death came upon all; (3) all becoming dead in sin, (4) and wholly defiled in all the faculties and parts of soul and body. (5)

3) Rom 3:23.
4) Rom 5:12-21.
5) Ti 1:15; Gen 6:5; Jer 17:9; Rom 3:10-19.

They being the root, and by God's appointment, standing in the room and stead of all mankind, the guilt of the sin was imputed, and corrupted nature conveyed, to all their posterity descending from them by ordinary generation, (6) being now conceived in sin, (7) and by nature children of wrath, (8) the servants of sin, the subjects of death, (9) and all other miseries, spiritual, temporal, an eternal, unless the Lord Jesus set them free. (10)

6) Rom 5:12-19; 1 Cor 15:21-22, 45, 49.
7) Ps 51:5; Job 14:4.
8) Eph 2:3.
9) Rom 6:20; 5:12.
10) Heb 2:14-15; 1 Thes 1:10.

From this original corruption, whereby we are utterly indisposed, disabled, and made opposite to all good, and wholly inclined to all evil; (11) do proceed all actual transgressions. (12)

11) Rom 8:7; Col 1:21.
12) Jam 1:14-15; Matt 15:19.

The corruption of nature, during this life, doth remain in those that are regenerated; (13) and although it be through Christ pardoned and mortified, yet both itself, and the first motions thereof, are truly and properly sin. (14)

13) Rom 7:18, 23; Ecc 7:20; 1 Jn 1:8.
14) Rom 7:23-25; Gal 5:17.

CHAPTER 7 - OF GOD'S COVENANT

The distance between God and the creature is so great, that although reasonable creatures do owe obedience unto Him as their creator, yet they could never have attained the reward of life but by some voluntary condescension on God's part, which He hath been pleased to express by way of covenant. (1)

1) Lk 17:10; Job 35:7-8.

Moreover, man having brought himself under the curse of the law by his fall, it pleased the Lord to make a covenant of grace, (2) wherein He freely offereth unto sinners life and salvation by Jesus Christ, requiring of them faith in Him, that they may be saved; (3) and promising to give unto all those that are ordained unto eternal life, His Holy Spirit, to make them willing and able to believe. (4)

2) Gen 2:17; Gal. 3:10; Rom 3:20-21.
3) Rom 8:3; Mk 16:15-16; Jn 3:16.
4) Ezek 36:26-27; Jn 6:44-45; Ps 110:3.

This covenant is revealed in the gospel; first of all to Adam in the promise of salvation by the seed of the woman, (5) and afterwards by farther steps, until the full discovery thereof was completed in the New Testament; (6) and it is founded in that eternal covenant transaction that was between the Father and the Son about the redemption of the elect; (7) and it is alone by the grace of this covenant that all of the posterity of fallen Adam that ever were saved did obtain life and blessed immortality, man being now utterly incapable of acceptance with God upon those terms on which Adam stood in his state of innocency. (8)

5) Gen3:15.
6) Heb 1:1.
7) 2 Tim 1:9; Ti 1:2.
8) Heb 11:6, 13; Rom 4:1-2; Acts 4:12; Jn 8:56.

CHAPTER 8 - OF CHRIST THE MEDIATOR

It pleased God, in His eternal purpose, to choose an ordain the Lord Jesus, His only begotten Son, according to the covenant made between them both, to be the mediator between God and man; (1) the Prophet, (2) Priest (3) and King; (4) head and Saviour of His church, (5) the heir of all things, (6) and judge of the world; (7) unto whom He did from all eternity give a people to be His seed and to be by Him in time redeemed, called, justified, sanctified, and glorified. (8)

1) Isa 42:1; 1 Pet 1:19-20.
2) Acts 3:22.
3) Heb 5:5-6.
4) Ps 2:6; Lk 1:33.
5) Eph 1:22-23.
6) Heb 1:2.
7) Acts 17:31.
8) Isa 53:10; Jn 17:6; Rom 8:30.

The Son of God, the second person in the Holy Trinity, being very and eternal God, the brightness of the Father's glory, of one substance and equal with Him who made the world, who upholdeth and governeth all things He hath made, did, when the fulness of time was come, take upon Him man's nature, with all the essential properties and common infirmities thereof, (9) yet without sin; (10) being conceived by the Holy Spirit in the womb of the Virgin Mary, the Holy Spirit coming down upon her: and the power of the Most High overshadowing her; and so was made of a woman of the tribe of Judah, of the seed of Abraham and David according to the Scriptures; (11) so that two whole, perfect, and distinct natures were inseparably joined together in one person, without conversion, composition, or confusion; which person is very God and very man, yet one Christ, the only mediator between God and man. (12)

9) Jn 1:14; Gal 4:4.
10) Rom 8:3; Heb 2:14, 16-17; 4:15.
11) Matt 1:22-23; Lk 1:27, 31, 35.
12) Rom 9:5; 1 Tim 2:5.

The Lord Jesus, in His human nature thus united to the divine, in the person of the Son, was sanctified and anointed with the Holy Spirit above measure, (13) having in Him all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge; (14) in whom it pleased the Father that all fullness should dwell, (15) to the end that being holy, harmless, undefiled, (16) and full of grace and truth, (17) He might be throughly furnished to execute the office of a mediator and surety; (18) which office He took not upon Himself, but was thereunto called by His Father; (19) who also put all power and judgment in His hand, and gave Him commandment to execute the same. (20)

13) Ps 45:7; Acts 10:38; Jn 3:34.
14) Col 2:3.
15) Col 1:19.
16) Heb 7:26.
17) Jn 1:14.
18) Heb 7:22.
19) Heb 5:5.
20) Jn 5:22, 27; Matt 28:18; Acts 2:36.

This office the Lord Jesus did most willingly undertake, (21) which that He might discharge He was made under the law, (22) and did perfectly fulfill it, and underwent the punishment due to us, which we should have borne and suffered, (23) being made sin and a curse for us; (24) enduring most grievous sorrows in His soul, and most painful sufferings in His body; (25) was crucified, and died, and remaining in the state of the dead, yet saw no corruption: (26) and on the third day He arose from the dead (27) with the same body in which he suffered, (28) with which He also ascended into heaven, (29) and there sitteth at the right hand of His Father making intercession, (30) and shall return to judge men and angels at the end of the world. (31)

21) Ps 40:7-8; Heb 10:5-10; Jn 10:18.
22) Gal 4:4; Matt 3:15.
23) Gal 3:13; Isa 53:6; 1 Pet 3:18.
24) 2 Cor 5:21.
25) Matt 26:37-38; Lk 22:44; Matt 27:46.
26) Acts 13:37.
27) 1 Cor 15:3-4.
28) Jn 20:25, 27.
29) Mk 16:19; Acts 1:9-11.
30) Rom 8:34; Heb 9:24.
31) Acts 10:42; Rom 14:9-10; Acts 1:11; 2 Pet 2:4.

The Lord Jesus, by His perfect obedience and sacrifice of Himself, which He through the eternal Spirit once offered up unto God, hath fully satisfied the justice of God, (32) procured reconciliation, and purchased an everlasting inheritance in the kingdom of heaven for all those whom the Father hath given unto Him. (33)

32) Heb 9:14; 10:14; Rom 3:25-26.
33) Jn 17:2; Heb 9:15.

Although the price of redemption was not actually paid by Christ till after His incarnation, yet the virtue, efficacy, and benefit thereof were communicated to the elect in all ages successively from the beginning of the world, in and by those promises, types, and sacrifices wherein He was revealed, and signified to be the seed which should bruise the serpent's head; (34) and the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world, (35) being the same yesterday, and to-day, and for ever. (36)

34) 1 Cor 4:10; Heb 4:2; 1 Pet 1:10-11.
35) Rev 13:8.
36) Heb 13:8.

Christ, in the work of mediation, acteth according to both natures, by each nature doing that which is proper to itself; yet by reason of the unity of the person, that which is proper to one nature is sometimes in scripture, attributed to the person denominated by the other nature. (37)

37) Jn 3:13; Acts 20:28.

To all those for whom Christ hat obtained eternal redemption, He doth certainly and effectually apply and communicate the same, making intercession for them; (38) uniting them to Himself by His Spirit, revealing unto them, in and by the Word, the mystery of salvation, persuading them to believe and obey, (39) governing their hearts by His Word and Spirit, (40) and overcoming all their enemies by His mighty power and wisdom, (41) in such manner and ways as are most consonant to His wonderful and unsearchable dispensation; and all of free and absolute grace, without any condition foreseen in them to procure it. (42)

38) Jn 6:37; 10:15-16; 17:9; Rom 5:10.
39) Jn 17:6; Eph 1:9; 1 Jn 5:20.
40) Rom 8:9, 14.
41) Ps 110:1; 1 Cor 15:25-26.
42) Jn 3:8; Eph 1:8.

This office of mediator between God and man is proper only to Christ, who is the prophet, priest, and king of the church of God; and may not be either in whole, or any part thereof, transferred from Him to any other. (43)

43) 1 Tim 2:5.

This number and order of offices is necessary; for in respect of our ignorance, we stand in need of His prophetical office; (44) and in respect of our alienation from God, and imperfection of the best of our services, we need His priestly office to reconcile us and present us acceptable unto God; (45) and in respect of our averseness and utter inability to return to God, and for our rescue and security from our spiritual adversaries, we need His kingly office to convince, subdue, draw, uphold, deliver, and preserve us to His heavenly kingdom. (46)

44) Jn 1:18.
45) Col 1:21; Gal 5:17.
46) Jn 16:8; Ps 110:3; Lk 1:74-75.

CHAPTER 9 - OF FREE WILL

God hath endued the will of man with that natural liberty and power of acting upon choice, that it is neither forced, nor by any necessity of nature determined to do good or evil. (1)

1) Matt 17:12; Jam 1:14; Deut 30:19.

Man, in his state of innocency, had freedom and power to will and to do that which was good and well-pleasing to God, (2) but yet was unstable, so that he might fall from it. (3)

2) Ecc 7:29.
3) Gen 3:6.

Man, by his fall into a state of sin, hath wholly lost all ability of will to any spiritual good accompanying salvation; (4) so as a natural man, being altogether averse from that good, and dead in sin, (5) is not able by his own strength to convert himself, or to prepare himself thereunto. (6)

4) Rom 5:6; 8:7.
5) Eph 2:1,5.
6) Ti 3:3-5; Jn 6:44.

When God converts a sinner, and translates him into the state of grace, He freeth him from his natural bondage under sin, (7) and by His grace alone enables him freely to will and to do that which is spiritually good; (8) yet so as that by reason of his remaining corruptions, he doth not perfectly, nor only will, that which is good, but doth also will that which is evil. (9)

7) Col 1:13; Jn 8:36.
8) Phil 2:13.
9) Rom 7:15,18-19, 21, 23.

This will of man is made perfectly and immutably free to good alone in the state of glory only. (10)

10) Eph 4:13.

CHAPTER 10 - OF EFFECTUAL CALLING

Those whom God hath predestined unto life, He is pleased in His appointed and accepted time, effectually to call, (1) by His Word and Spirit, out of that state of sin and death in which they are by nature, to grace and salvation by Jesus Christ; (2) enlightening their minds spiritually and savingly to understand the things of God; (3) taking away their heart of stone, and giving unto them a heart of flesh: (4) renewing their wills, and by His almighty power determining them to that which is good, and effectually drawing them to Jesus Christ; (5) yet so as they come most freely, being made willing by His grace. (6)

1) Rom 8:30; 11:7; Eph 1:10-11, 2 Thes 2:13-14.
2) Eph 2:1-6.
3) Acts 26:18; Eph 1:17-18.
4) Ezek 36:26.
5) Deut 30:6; Ezek 36:27; Eph 1:19.
6) Ps 110:3; Song 1:4.

This effectual call is of God's free and special grace alone, not from anything at all foreseen in man, nor from any power or agency in the creature, (7) being wholly passive therein, being dead in sins and trespasses, until being quickened and renewed by the Holy Spirit; (8) he is thereby enabled to answer this call, and to embrace the grace offered and conveyed in it, and that by no less power than that which raised up Christ from the dead. (9)

7) 2 Tim 1:9; Eph 2:8.
8) 1 Cor 2:14; Eph 2:5; Jn 5:25.
9) Eph 1:19-20.

Infants dying in infancy are regenerated and saved by Christ through the Spirit; (10) who worketh when, and where, and how He pleaseth; (11) so also are all elect persons, who are incapable of being outwardly called by the ministry of the Word.

10) Jn 3:3, 5-6.
11) Jn 3:8.

Others not elected, although they may be called by the ministry of the Word, and may have some common operations of the Spirit, (12) yet not being effectually drawn by the Father, they neither will nor can truly come to Christ, and therefore cannot be saved: (13) much less can men that receive not the Christian religion be saved, be they never so diligent to frame their lives according to the light of nature and the law of that religion they do profess. (14)

12) Matt 22:14; 13:20-21; Heb 6:4-5.
13) Jn 6:44-45, 65; 1 Jn 2:24-25.
14) Acts 4:12; Jn 4:22; 17:3.

CHAPTER 11 - OF JUSTIFICATION

Those whom God effectually calleth, He also freely justifieth, (1) not by infusing righteousness into them, but by pardoning their sins, and by accounting and accepting their persons as righteous; (2) not for anything wrought in them, or done by them, but for Christ's sake alone; (3) not by imputing faith itself, the act of believing, or any other evangelical obedience to them, as their righteousness; but by imputing Christ's active obedience unto the whole law, and passive obedience in His death for their whole and sole righteousness, (4) they receiving and resting on Him and His righteousness by faith, which faith they have not of themselves; it is the gift of God. (5)

1) Rom 3:24; 8:30.
2) Rom 4:5-8; Eph 1:7.
3) 1 Cor 1:30-31; Rom 5:17-19.
4) Phil 3:8-9; Eph 2:8-10.
5) Jn 1:12; Rom 5:17.

Faith thus receiving and resting on Christ and His righteousness, is the alone instrument of justification; (6) yet it is not alone in the person justified, but ever accompanied with all other saving graces, and is no dead faith, but worketh by love. (7)

6) Rom 3:28.
7) Gal 5:6; Jam 2:17, 22, 26.

Christ, by His obedience and death, did fully discharge the debt of all those that are justified; and did, by the sacrifice of Himself in the blood of His cross, undergoing in their stead the penalty due unto them, make a proper, real, and full satisfaction to God's justice in their behalf (8); yet inasmuch as He was given by the Father for them, and His obedience and satisfaction accepted in their stead, and both freely, not for anything in them, (9) their justification is only of free grace, that both the exact justice and rich grace of God might be glorified in the justification of sinners. (10)

8) Heb 10:14; 1 Pet 1:18-19; Isa 53:5-6.
9) Rom 8:32; 2 Cor 5:21.
10) Rom 3:26; Eph 1:6-7; 2:7.

God did from all eternity decree to justify all the elect, (11) and Christ did in the fullness of time die for their sins, and rise again for their justification; (12) nevertheless, they are not justified personally, until the Holy Spirit doth in time due actually apply Christ unto them. (13)

11) Gal 3:8; 1 Pet 1:2; 1 Tim 2:6.
12) Rom 4:25.
13) Col 1:21-22; Ti 3:4-7.

God doth continue to forgive the sins of those that are justified, (14) and although they can never fall from the state of justification, (15) yet they may, by their sins, fall under God's fatherly displeasure; (16) and in that condition they have not usually the light of His countenance restored unto them, until they humble themselves, confess their sins, beg pardon, and renew their faith and repentance. (17)

14) Matt 6:12; 1 Jn 1:7, 9.
15) Jn 10:28.
16) Ps 89:31-33.
17) Ps 32:5; Ps 51:1-19; Matt 26:75.

The justification of believers under the Old Testament was, in all these respects, one and the same with the justification of believers under the New Testament. (18)

Gal 3:9; Rom 4:22-24.


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