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our Creatour. For ’tis not to be Supposed, or Imagin'd, that the Contriver and Author of our Beings can be Ignorant of them. And hence 'tis observable, that neither the Wonderful Numbers, nor Differences of Creatures can Prevent, or Obstruct God's Knowledge of every Particucular amongst them. For, if every Single creature be as Certainly and Properly Produced and Constituted, by his Voluntary and Positive Act, as if that creature Alone had been produced by him ; Then every Single Being is as Distinctly, and Fully, and perfectly Known by him, as if That Single Being were the Only object of his Knowledge.
After the Works of the Creation were Finished, the First Remark made upon them was, that God Saw every thing that he had made, that he took Special Cognizance of the Nature and Constitution, the State and Circumstances of All created Beings: And, every Thing that he had made being Disposed and Order'd by his Wisdom, That Knowledge of his, whereby he applies the best Means to the best Ends, Therefore the next Thing Remark'd
was, this Judgment which the Creatour passed upon the whole Work of Creation, And behold it was very good. - The Images of Things were all Distinct, and Fair, and Perfect in the Divine Mind, before they were made. Creation was only the Actual Execution of God's Eternal Designs, That External Action, whereby he gave Existence to Beings, in an Exact and Intire Conformity to the Ideas, which he had of them, from Everlasting, · within Himself. And hence appears the Perfection, as well as the Extent of that Knowledge, which God hath of his Creatures. For, as They are, in Effect, the Transcripts and Resemblances of his own Conceptions, His Consciousness of the One, must be the consummate Knowledge of the Other. Since there is not a Figure, or Line in any Body throughout the Compass of the Visible World; not a Principle, or Faculty, or Power, in any Being, Visible or Invisible, but what was first Adjusted in its Grand Exemplar, the Mind of God; and since his Conceptions are Indelible and Immutable, Therefore the View of his own Conceptions, is at once
a moft Accurate and Intimate Survey of every Created Being.
And as the Creatour hath the Complete Knowledge of Them, in their Original, the Eternal Ideas of them within Himself; fo is he, in his own Essence, Immediately Present with every one of them. And therefore the Nature and Operations, and all the Circumstances of every Being are continually under His Inspection, continually Unfolded and Dif· played before him.
So Firm and Sure are the Foundations of this great Truth delivered by the Apoftle, Hebr. iv. 13, Neither is there any creature that is not manifest in his Sight: But all things are naked and opened unto the eyes of him, with whom we have to do. •
And to these General Reasons of God's Knowledge may be reduced those passages of Scripture which represent his Particular and Perfect Knowledge of Human Affairs. Such are those Texts, which testifie either : : ift, His Knowledge of our Outward Actions, or
2dly, His Knowledge of our Hearts and Thoughts, or
3dly, His Foreknowledge, or, his Knowledge of Future Events, even of Those which are properly contingent, and depend upon the Voluntary Resolutions and Determinations of Free Agents.
ist, The Infallible Word of God teftifies his Knowledge of our Outward AEtions. : Thus we are taught, Job xxxiv. 21. His eyes are upon the ways of man, and be seeth all his goings; and in the words immediately following the Text, By him Actions are weighed: And PS. cxxxix. 3. Thou art acquainted with all my ways. Our Power of Acting is communicated by Him, and therefore our Exercise and Applications of that Power, which intirely Depends upon him, must be perfectly Known to him. And because He is always Immediately Present with us, 'tis as impossible for us to Act without his Knowledge, as to Subsist without his Support · 2dly, The Scripture testifies God's certain Knowledge of our Hearts and Thoughts. Upon this Principle Holy Da
vid builds his Exhortations to Solomon, * Know thou the God of thy father, and serve him with i perfect heart, and with a willing mind; for the Lord searcheth all hearts, and understandeth all the Imaginations of the Thoughts.
Our Discernment cannot reach the Secrets of Mens Minds; and therefore, by their fruits ye shall know them, is the necessary Rule of our Judgment, as well as of our Charity. But God's Knowledge of our Hearts does not Depend upon, nor Want the Evidence of our outward behaviour. He sees Them Directly, as they are in Themselves : The Soul being in his Immediate Presence, as well as the Body, He observes the operations of the One, as Accurately as the Other, our Thoughts as Distinctly as our Aftions.
3dly, The Scripture t testifies the Foreknowledge of God, or, his Knowledge of Future Events, even of Those which are properly Contingent, and depend upon the Voluntary Determinations of Free Agents. Nothing is more Evident, than
Chron. xxviii. 9.
Dan. ii. 28. Ifa. xliii. 9. ---xlvi. 10.