MR. WESLEY'S VIEWS OF MORAVIANISM.
"THE difference between the Moravian doctrine and ours (in this respect) lies here: —
They believe and teach, —
"1. That Christ has done all which was necessary for the salvation of all mankind.
"2. That, consequently, we are to do nothing, as necessary to salvation, but simply to believe in Him.
"3. That there is but one duty now, but one command, viz., to believe in Christ.
"4. That Christ has taken away all other commands and duties, having wholly 'abolished the law;' that a believer is therefore 'free from the law,' is not obliged thereby to do or omit anything; it being inconsistent with his liberty to do anything as commanded.
"5. That we are sanctified wholly the moment we are justified, and are neither more nor less holy to the day of our death; entire sanctification, and entire justification, being in one and the same instant.
"6. That a believer is never sanctified or holy in himself, but in Christ only; he has no holiness in himself at all, all his holiness being imputed, not inherent.
"7. That if a man regards prayer, or searching the Scriptures, or communicating, as matter of duty; if he judges himself obliged to do these things, or is troubled when he does them not; he is in bondage; he has no faith at all, but is seeking salvation by the works of the law."
"We believe that the first of these propositions is ambiguous, and all the rest utterly false.
"'1. Christ has done all which was necessary for the salvation of all mankind.'
"This is ambiguous. Christ has not done all which was necessary for the absolute salvation of all mankind. For, notwithstanding all that Christ has done, he that believeth not shall be damned. But He has done all which was necessary for the conditional salvation of all mankind; that is, if they believe; for through His merits all that believe to the end, with the faith that worketh by love, shall be saved.
"'3. There is but one duty now, but one command, viz., to believe in Christ.'
"Almost every page in the New Testament proves the falsehood of this assertion.
"'4. Christ has taken away all other commands and duties, having wholly abolished the law.'
"How absolutely contrary is this to His own solemn declaration! - 'Think not that I am come to destroy the law and the prophets. I am not come to destroy but to fulfil. One jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law till heaven and earth pass.'
"'Therefore a believer is free from the law.' That he is 'free from the curse of the law,' we know; and that he is 'free from the law,' or power 'of sin and death:' but where is it written that he is free from the law of God?
"'He is not obliged thereby to do or omit anything, it being inconsistent with his liberty to do anything as commanded.'
"So your liberty is a liberty to disobey God; whereas ours is a liberty to obey Him in all things: so grossly, while we "establish the law," do you "make void the law through faith!"
"'5. We are sanctified wholly the moment we are justified, and are neither more nor less holy to the day of our death; entire sanctification and entire justification being in one and the same instant.'
"Just the contrary appears both from the tenor of God's Word, and the experience of His children.
"'6. A believer is never sanctified or holy in himself, but in Christ only. He has no holiness in himself at all; all his holiness being imputed, not inherent.'
"Scripture holiness is the image of God; the mind which was in Christ; the love of God and man; lowliness, gentleness, temperance, patience, chastity. And do you coolly affirm that this is only imputed to a believer, and that he has none at all of this holiness in him? Is temperance imputed only to him that is a drunkard still; or chastity, to her that goes on in whoredom? Nay, but a believer is really chaste and temperate. And if so, he is thus far holy in himself.
"Does a believer love God, or does he not? If he does, he has the love of God in him. Is he lowly, or meek, or patient at all? If he is, he has these tempers in himself; and if he has them not in himself, he is not lowly, or meek, or patient. You cannot, therefore, deny that every believer has holiness in, though not from, himself; else you deny, that he is holy at all; and if so, he cannot see the Lord.
"And, indeed, if holiness in general be the mind which was in Christ, what can anyone possibly mean by, 'A believer is not holy in himself, but in Christ only? that the mind which was in Christ is in a believer also; but it is in Him, — not in himself, but in Christ!' What a heap of palpable self-contradiction, what senseless jargon is this! - Works" vol. vii. p. 22.
To Rev. Joseph Benson" 1770: —
"You judge rightly; perfect love and Christian liberty are the very same thing; and those two expressions are equally proper, being equally Scriptural. 'Nay, how can they and you mean the same thing? They say, you insist on holiness in the creature, on good tempers, and sin destroyed.' Most surely. And what is Christian liberty, but another word for holiness? And where is this liberty or holiness, if it is not in the creature? Holiness is the love of God and man, or the mind which was in Christ. Now, I trust, the love of God is shed abroad in your heart, by the Holy Ghost which is given unto you. And if you are holy, is not that mind in you which was also in Christ Jesus?" — Works vol. vii. p. 68.
"I am myself the more sparing in the use of it ('the righteousness of Christ') because it has been so frequently and so dreadfully abused; and because the Antinomians use it at this day to justify the grossest abominations. And it is great pity that those who love, who preach, and follow after holiness, should, under the notion of honoring Christ, give any countenance to those who continually make Him 'the minister of sin,' and so build on His righteousness as to live in such ungodliness and unrighteousness as is scarce named even among the heathens." - Works, vol. vi. p. 102.
"But how then are we to reconcile this with that passage in the seventh chapter (of Revelation), 'They have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb?' Will they say, the righteousness of Christ was washed and made white in the blood of Christ?' Away with such Antinomian jargon. Is not the plain meaning this: it was from the atoning blood, that the very righteousness of the saints derives its value and acceptableness with God? . . . Without the righteousness of Christ we could have no claim to glory; without holiness we could have no fitness for it. By the former we become members of Christ, children of God, and heirs of the kingdom of heaven. By the latter, 'we are made meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light.'" — Sermons, vol. ii. p. 457.