van Mastricht

1) XXV1. Quest. Forth. Does the physical operation of regeneration effect the will immediately? The rank Pelagians, with the Socinians, allow no physical operation of God at all in regeneration; but hold only to a moral and external operation. The Semi-Pelagians, with the Jesuits and Arminians, allow some physical efficiency in regeneration; but such as affects not the will, or free will; but only other faculties of the soul. Some of the Reformed, v.g. John Cameron, and many others allow indeed a physical operation upon the will; but that only by the medium of the understanding, which God, in regeneration so powerfully enlightens, and convinces that the will cannot but follow it’s own last practical dictate. Peter van Mastricht, A Treatise on Regeneration (New-Haven: Printed and Sold by Thomas and Samuel Green, in the Old-Council-Chamber, 1770), 37-38. [Some spelling modernize; marginal header not included; italics original.]

2) But as to the baptism of infants, here the orthodox are divided; some deny that regeneration precede baptism, which therefore, as they suppose, only seals regeneration as future, when the elect infant shall arrive to years of discretion, so as to be capable of faith and repentance; thus the celebrated Amyraldus. But he inaccurately confounds regeneration, which bestows spiritual life in the first act or principle (by which the infant is effectually enabled, when he arrives to the exercise of reason, to believe and repent), with conversion; which includes the actual exercises of faith and repentance; which cannot take place before the years of discretion. Peter van Mastricht, A Treatise on Regeneration (New-Haven: Printed and Sold by Thomas and Samuel Green, in the Old-Council-Chamber, 1770), 46-47. [Some spelling modernized and italics original.]

[Note: Mastricht's Treatise on Regeneration is an extract from his Theologia theoretico-practica which was translated and published separately in 1770.]

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