IV. what are the evidences by which the truth of the christian religion or the doctrine of the church is confirmed?
. . . 1. The purity and perfection of the Law. It is impossible that that religion should be true and divine that either invents and tolerates idols or approves of those forms of wickedness that are plainly contrary to the law of God and the judgment of right reason. Now all the different forms of religion, except that which has been revealed in the sacred Scriptures and which is received and acknowledged by the church evidently do this. For all of them either entirely abrogate the first table of the Decalogue, which has respect to the one true God and his worship, or they shamefully corrupt it. While they, at the same time, retain only a small part of the second table relating to external propriety and civil duties. It is only the church that retains both tables of the Decalogue entire and uncorrupted, according to the Scriptures. Hence, it is only the doctrine of the church that is true and divine.
2. The gospel shows the way of escape and deliverance from sin and death. Most assuredly that doctrine and religion is true and divine which reveals a method of deliverance from these great evils without doing any violence to the justice of God and which administers solid consolation to the conscience in relation to everlasting life. Now, as the doctrine of the church is the only system of religious truth that has ever discovered and proclaimed a way of deliverance from the evils of sin and death, which alone affords real and substantial consolation to the conscience, it must be true and divine.
The evidence of both law and gospel confirm these but in the same breath, how is it that only the church that retains both tables of the Decalogue entire and uncorrupted, according to the Scriptures, keep them true and divine? Not by our doing…
If you love me keep my commandments. As to keeping them in purity and perfection this is Christ; as for us…only sincerely.
Are these the evidences by which the truth of the christian religion or the doctrine of the church is confirmed?