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the three persons of the most blessed Trinity, consisteth the matter and effect of the whole, Creed.


We believe that there is one certain nature and divine power which we call God, and that this is distinguished into three equal Persons, the Father, "Son, and Holy Ghost, all of the same power, of the same majesty, of the same eternity, of the same divinity, and of the same substance; and although these three Persons are so distinguished, that the Father is not the Son, nor the Son the Holy Ghost or Father ; yet there is but one God, and this one God created heaven and earth, and whatever is contained within the circumference of the heavens.


Master. Seeing there is but one Gud, tell me why, in the confession of the Christian faith, thou rehearsest three, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost.

Scholar. Those be not the names of sundry Gods, but of three distinct Persons in one Godhead. For in one substance of God we must consider, the Father, which of himself begat the Son even from eternity, the beginning and first author of all things; the Son, even from cternity


begotten of the Father, which is the eternal wisdom of God the Father; the Holy Ghost, proceeding from them both, as the power of God spread abroad through all things, but yet so as it is also continually abideth in itself: and yet that God is not therefore divided. For of these three Persons, none goeth before the other in time, in greatness, or in dignity ; but the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost, three distinct Persons, in eternity of like continuance, in power, even in dignity equal, and in Godhead one. There is therefore one eternal, immortal, almighty, glorious, the best, the greatest God, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost. For so hath the universal number of Christians, which is called the Catholic Church, taught us by the Holy Scriptures concerning God the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost: where otherwise the infinite depth of this mystery is so great that it cannot with mind be conceived, much less with words be expressed, wherein therefore is required a simplicity of Christian faith ready to believe, rather than sharpness of wit to search, or the office of the tongue to express so secret and hidden a mystery.

REFORMATIO LEGUM, &c. What is to be believed of the Nature of God and the blessed Trinity. Chap. 2.

And that in the unity of that Divine Nature, there are three Persons, of the same Essence and Eternity, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. That the Father, indeed, is of Himself, neither of any other is he begotten or proceeding: and the Son is begotten of the Father. That the Holy Spirit proceeds from both the Father and the Son : not that there is any diversity or inequality of nature to be supposed in this distinction of persons, but as to the Substance, or as it is said, the Divine Essence, all things are alike and equal.

Of the Three Creeds. Chap. 5.

And since nearly all things which relate to the Catholick Faith, as well with regard to the blessed Trinity, as with regard to the Mysteries of our Redemption, are briefly contained in the Three Creeds, that is, the Apostles', Nicene, and Athanasian ; therefore we receive and embrace these Three Creeds, as certain compendiums of our faith, because they may readily be proved by most sure testimonies of the Divine and Canonical Scriptures.

Epilogue. Chap. 16. But since it would be a very long and evidently laborious work, to write distinctly, at present, all things which are to be believed according to the Catholick Faith, we judge that sufficient which we have declared concerning the Holy Trinity,Jesus Christ our Lord,-and salvation procured through him for the human race.

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Of God the Father.


The first Person of the adorable Trinity is God the Father, having priority in respect of personal properties, but not of essential Attributes.

§ 2. To the Father is most frequently applied the abstract title, God, in a peculiar and pre-eminent manner, both in the Scriptures, and by the primitive writers of the Christian Church, as being the head and origin of all things, even of Divinity, and differing in this respect from the other two Persons of the Godhead, that, though they be no less perfectly and entirely God, -the Son is begotten, and the Holy Ghost proceeding.

3. God, the Father Almighty, is declared to be, more especially, with reference to his peculiar office, the Maker of Heaven and Earth, and of all things visible and invisible,--the Preserver and Disposer,the Lord and Governour of all the created Universe.

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