Redemption Price for All:

1) XLIX.
Prayer that all men
may find mercy,
and the will of God,
that all men might
be saved.

In praying for deliverance from all adversity we seek that which nature doth wish to itself; but by entreating for mercy towards all, we declare that affection wherewith Christian charity thirsts after the good of the whole world, we discharge that duty which the Apostle himself does impose on on the Church of Christ as a commendable office, a sacrifice acceptable in God’s sight, a service according to his heart whose desire is “to have all men saved,” 54 a work most suitable with his purpose who gave himself to be the price of redemption for all, and a forcible mean to procure the conversion of all such as are not yet acquainted with the mysteries of that truth which must save their souls. Against it there is but the bare show of this one impediment, that all men’s salvation and many men’s eternal condemnation or death are things the one repugnant to the other, that both cannot be brought to pass; that we know there are vessels of wrath to whom God will never extend mercy, and therefore that wittingly we ask an impossible thing to be had.55 Richard Hooker, The Works of Mr. Richard Hooker, (London: Clarendon Press, 1874), 2: 213-214. [Some spelling modernized; some reformatting, footnote values and content original; bracketed inserts original; some marginal references not included; and underlining mine.] [Note, some footnoting in the original is incorrectly sequenced.]

Life and Death of Christ Sufficient for All:

1) This life and this resurrection our Lord Jesus Christ is for all men as touching the sufficiency of that he has done; but that which makes us partakers thereof is our particular communion with Christ, and this sacrament a principal mean as well to strengthen the bond as to multiply in us the fruits of the same communion. . . . Richard Hooker, The Works of Mr. Richard Hooker, (London: Clarendon Press, 1874), 2: 380. [Some spelling modernized; and underlining mine.]

Redeemed Souls in the Church:

1) IV. Our Lord and Savior in the sixteenth of St. Matthew’s Gospel gives his Apostles regiment in general over God’s Church. For they that have the keys of the kingdom of heaven are thereby signified to be stewards of the house of God, under whom they guide, command, judge, and correct his family. The souls of men are God’s treasure, committed to the trust and fidelity of such as must render a strict account for the very least which is under their custody. God has not invested them with power to make a revenue thereof, but to use it for the’ good of them whom Jesus Christ hath most men into dearly bought. Richard Hooker, Laws of Ecclesiastical Polity, in The Works of Mr. Richard Hooker, (London: Clarendon Press, 1874), 3:12-13. [Some spelling modernized, textual apparatus not included, marginal references not included; and underling mine.]

2) Lord Jesus Christ hath left in his Church to be spiritual and ghostly physicians, the guides and pastors of redeemed souls, whose office doth not only consist in general persuasions unto amendment of life, but also in the private particular cure of diseased. minds. Richard Hooker, Laws of Ecclesiastical Polity, in The Works of Mr. Richard Hooker, (London: Clarendon Press, 1874), 3:31. [Some spelling modernized, textual apparatus not included, marginal references not included; and underling mine.]

3) [12.] A bishop, in whom there did plainly appear the marks and tokens of a fatherly affection towards them that are under his charge, what good might he do ten thousand ways more than any man knows how to set down? But the souls of men are not loved, that which Christ shed his blood for is not esteemed precious. This is the very root, the fountain of all negligence in church-government. Richard Hooker, Laws of Ecclesiastical Polity, in The Works of Mr. Richard Hooker, (London: Clarendon Press, 1874), 3:31. [Underling mine.]

Redeemed Souls Perish:

1) Secondly that they which by right of patronage have power to present unto spiritual livings, and may in that respect much damnify the Church of God, would for the ease of their own account in the dreadful day somewhat consider what it is to betray for gain the souls which Christ has redeemed with blood, what to violate the sacred bond of fidelity and solemn promise given at the first to God and his Church by them, from whose original interest together with the selfsame title of right the same obligation of duty likewise is descended. . . . Richard Hooker, The Works of Mr. Richard Hooker, (London: Clarendon Press, 1874), 2: 533. [Some spelling modernized and underlining mine.]

Christ Suffered for the Sins of All Men:

1) And that Deity of Christ which before our Lord’s incarnation wrought all things without man, doth now work nothing wherein the nature which it hath assumed is either absent from it or idle. Christ as man hath34 all power both in heaven and earth given him. He hath as Man not as God only supreme dominion over quick and dead,35 for so much his ascension into heaven, and his session at the right hand of God do import. The Son of God which did first humble himself by taking our flesh upon him, descended afterwards much lower, and became according to the flesh obedient so far as to suffer death, even the death of the cross, for all men, because such was his Father’s will. Richard Hooker, The Works of Mr. Richard Hooker, (London: Clarendon Press, 1874), 2: 243. [Some spelling modernized, footnote values and content original; and underlining mine.]

2) [33.] He that wills the end, must needs will also the means whereby we are brought unto it. And one [our?] fall in Adam being presupposed, the means now which serve as causes effectual by their own worth to procure us eternal life, are only the merits of Jesus Christ, without whom no heathen by the law of nature, no Jew by the law of Moses, was ever justified. Yea it were perhaps no error to affirm, that the virtue of the blood of our Lord Jesus Christ being taken away, the Jew by having the law, was farther removed from hope of salvation and life, than the other by wanting the law: if it be true which Fulgentius72 hath, that without the graces of belief in Christ, the law doth more heavily condemn being known, than unknown: because by how much the ignorance of sin is made less, by so much his guiltiness that sins is greater. And St. Paul’s own doctrine is,73 that the law, severed from Christ, doth but only aggravate sin. God being desirous of all men’s salvation, according to his own principal or natural inclination, has in token thereof for their sakes whom he loved, bestowed his beloved Son. The selfsame affection was in Christ himself to whom the wicked at the day of their last doom will never dare to allege for their own excuse, “That he which offered himself as a sacrifice to redeem some, did exclude the rest, and so made the way of their salvation impossible.” He paid a ransom for the whole world; on him the iniquities of all were laid; and, as St. Peter plainly witnesses, he bought them which deny him, and which perish because they deny him.74 As in very truth, whether we respect the power and sufficiency of the price given; or the spreading of that infection, (or remedy whereof the same was necessary; or the largeness of his desire which gave it; we have no reason but to acknowledge with joy and comfort, that he tasted death for all men: as the Apostle to the Hebrews notes.75 Nor do I think that any wound did ever strike his sacred heart more deeply, than the foresight of men’s ingratitude, by infinite numbers of whom that which cost him so dear would so little be regarded; and that made to so few effectual through contempt, which he of tender compassion in largeness of love had provided to be a medicine sufficient for all. As therefore the gospel itself, which Christ hath commanded to preach unto all creatures, is an apparent effect of his general care and providence: so Christ, the principal matter therein contained and taught, must needs likewise have been instituted by the selfsame general providence to serve for a most sufficient remedy for the sin of mankind, although to ordain in whom particularly it shall be forcible and effectual be ac act of special personal providence.

[34] The cause of God’s (sic).

But if God would have all men saved, and if Christ through such his grace have died for all men, wherefore are they not all saved? God’s principal desire touching man’s happiness is not always satisfied. It is on all sides confessed, that his will in this kind oftentimes succeeds not; the cause whereof is a personal impediment making particular men unable [uncapable?] of that good which the will of his general providence did ordain for mankind. So that from God, as it were by a secondary kind of will, there grows now destruction and death, although otherwise the will of his voluntary inclination towards man would effect the contrary. For the which cause the Wise Man directly teaches, that death is not a thing which God hath made or devised with intent to have so many thousands eternally therein devoured: that condemnation is not the end wherefore God did create any man, although it be an event or consequent which man’s unrighteousness causes God to decree. The decree of condemnation is an act of hatred; the cause of hatred in God is not his own inclination thereunto: for his nature is, to hate nothing which he hath made; therefore the cause of this affection towards man must needs be in man some quality whereof God is himself no author. The decree of condemnation is an act of divine justice. Justice does not purpose punishment for an end, and faults as means to attain that end: for so it should be a just thing to desire that men might be unjust: but justice always presupposing sin which it loves not, decrees punishment as a consequent wherein it takes otherwise no pleasure. Finally, if death be decreed as a punishment, the very nature of punishment we know is such as implies faultiness going before; without which we must give unto it some other name, but a punishment it cannot be. So that the nature of God’s goodness, the nature of justice, and the nature of death itself, are all opposite to their opinion, if any will be of opinion, that God hath eternally decreed condemnation without the foresight of ain as a cause. The place of Judas was locus suus, a place of his own proper procurement. Devils were not ordained of God for hell-fire, but hell-fire for them; and for men, so far forth as it was foreseen, that men would be like them. There are speeches in Scripture, where we read of Christ himself laid in Sion as a stone to stumble at, and a rock to make men fall: of the wicked created to the day of wrath, fashioned to destruction, fore-ordained to condemnation. But the words are ambiguous. For inasmuch as ends and events have this common, that they are the last thing which befalls, therefore the same phrase of speech doth usually serve in both. But our understanding must distinguish where the one is meant, and not the other. Where we say that man is born to die, we mean that death is the event of his birth. When we teach that Christ died to redeem the world, we mean that the end of his death was redemption. The determination of God therefore touching reprobates, is of Damascen75 termed aptly enough a consequent will, forasmuch as it presupposes in man a just and deserved cause leading him who is most holy thereunto. Richard Hooker, The Works of Mr. Richard Hooker, (London: Clarendon Press, 1874), 2: 573-574. [Some spelling modernized; some reformatting, footnote values and content original; bracketed inserts original; some marginal references not included; and underlining mine.] [Note, some footnoting in the original is incorrectly sequenced.]

3) [39.] To proceed therefore with the rest: we have seen the general inclination of God towards all men’s everlasting happiness notwithstanding sin: we have seen that this natural love of God towards mankind, was the cause of appointing or predestinating Christ to suffer for the sins of the whole world: we have seen that our Lord, who made himself a sacrifice for our sins, did it in the bowels of a merciful desire that no man might perish: We have seen that God nevertheless hath found most just occasion to decree the death and condemnation of some: we have seen that the whole cause, why such are excluded from life, rests altogether in themselves: we have seen that the natural will of God being inclined towards all men’s salvation, and his occasioned will having set down the death but of some in such consideration as hath been showed; it must needs follow, that of the rest there is a determinate ordinance, proceeding from the good pleasure of God, whereby they are, and have been, before all worlds, predestinated heirs of eternal bliss.

We have seen that in Christ the Prince of God’s elect all worthiness was foreseen; that in the elect angels there was not foreseen any matter for just indignation and wrath to work upon; that in all other God foresaw iniquity, for which an irrevocable sentence of death and condemnation might most justly have past over all. For it can never be too often inculcated, that touching the very decree of endless destruction and death, God is the judge from whom it comes, but man the cause of which it grew. Salvation contrariwise and life proceeds only both from God and of God. We are receivers through grace and mercy, authors, through merit and desert, we are not, of our own salvation. Richard Hooker, The Works of Mr. Richard Hooker, (London: Clarendon Press, 1874), 2:583-584. [Some spelling modernize and underlining mine.]

Reference to 2 Corinthians 5:14-15:

1) 2. Now concerning the righteous, there neither is, nor ever was, any mere natural man absolutely righteous in himself: that is to say, void of all unrighteousness, of all sin. We dare not except, no not the blessed Virgin herself; of whom although we say with St. Augustine, for the honor’s sake which we owe to our Lord and Savior Christ, we are not willing, in this cause, to move any question of his mother; yet forasmuch as the schools of Rome have made it a question, we must answer with Eusebius Emissenus, who speaks of her, and to her to this effect:

Thou did by special prerogative nine months together entertain within the closet of thy flesh the hope of all the ends of the earth, the honor of the world, the common joy of men. He, from whom all things had their beginning, has had his own beginning from thee; of thy body he took the blood which was to be shed for the life of the world; of thee he took that which even for thee he paid. “A peccati enim veteris nexu, per se non est immunis nec ipsa genitrix Redemptoris. The mother of the Redeemer herself, otherwise than by redemption, is not loosed from the band of that ancient sin.

If Christ have paid a ransom for all, even for her, it follows, that all without exception were captives. If one have died for all, all were dead, dead in sins; all sinful, therefore none absolutely righteous in themselves; but we are absolutely righteous in Christ. The world then must show a Christian t man, otherwise it is not able to shew a man that is perfectly righteous: “Christ is made unto us wisdom, justice, sanctification, and redemption": wisdom, because he hath revealed his Father’s will; justice, because he has offered himself a sacrifice for sin; sanctification, because he has given us of his Spirit; redemption, because he has appointed a day to vindicate his children out of the bands of corruption into liberty which is glorious. How Christ is made wisdom, and how redemption, it may be declared when occasion serves; but how Christ is made the righteousness of men, we are now to declare. Richard Hooker, A Learned Discourse, in The Works of Mr. Richard Hooker, (London: Clarendon Press, 1874), 3: 484-485. [Some spelling modernized; some reformatting, footnotes and textual apparatus not included; and underlining mine.]


54I Tim. ii. 3.

55[I Adm. ap. Whitg. Del. 739. “They pray tbat all men may be saved.” Whitgift, “Answer, Ibid. al. 253. “We do so indeed; and what can you allege why we should not do so? St. Paul says, ‘I exhort that supplications, &c., be made for all men.’ And adding the reason he says, ‘For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour: who will that all men be saved.”

34Matt. xxviii. 18.

35Rom. xiv. 9.

72De Incar. et Gra. c. 16. [“Legalis quoque auditus non solum nemmem de potestate tenabrarum eripuit, quin etiam peccatoribus cumulum Praevaricationis adjecit. Sine gratia quippe fidei gravius lex aguita quam ignorata condemnat. Ubi quantum ignorantia peccati minuitur, tantum reatua peccatoris augetur." p. 240. ed. Raynaud. 1633.]

731 Tim. 4. [10.] Servator omnium ma- (sec) [maxime credendum?]

74John vi; Esai. liii; 1 John ii; 2 Cor. v; 2 Pet. ii. 1.

75Heb. ii. 9.

75[Ubi aupra.]

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