Joseph A. Benton Collection

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Joseph A. Benton came to California in 1849, during the gold rush. He first settled in Sacramento, where he founded the First Congregation Church in 1851. He was a pastor for many years as well as a professor of Biblical literature at Pacific Theological Seminary. This collection consists of correspondences and sermons dating from 1848 to 1893. Please note that historical materials in the Gold Rush Collections may include viewpoints and values that are not consistent with the values of the California State Library or the State of California and may be considered offensive. Materials must be viewed in the context of the relevant time period but views are in no way endorsed by the State Library. The California State Library’s mission is to provide credible information services to all Californians and, as such, the content of historical materials should be transcribed as it appears in the original document.

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(5) [centered]

3. A new state of the affections fixed supremely on new objects. Loves what once he disliked – delights in new things – All glowing love unfelt before – with a devotion wh. [which] longs & thirsts for God & Christ.

Fulfills – measurably – the com-mand – Thou shalt love t. [the] Lord thy God with all t. [thy] heart &c [etc.].

This is now the great strong love of the heart – controls all lesser affe'ts [affects] & disposs [dispositions] – leads to restrain all inor-dinatt [inordinate] desires & affects –.

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(6) [centered]

(a) Is one passive or active – is the change wrought in him; or does he work it himself?

Ans. [Answer] Not wroght [wrought] in by any physic. [physical] energy. Not a cloud or machine.

Man does work himself under diivine influences – wh. [which] he might resist.

Not waits till something visits him – must convert himself – not wait to be converted.

No conversion in sleep – in darkness – Itelligent [Intelligent ] act – Same as sin is.

Repents in view of number, enormity, influence, causelessness of his sins – forsakes casts off &c [etc.] = all his actively.

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(7) [centered]

(b) Is this change Instantaneous?

In general it is –. The change of his will is t. [the] nucleus of the whole – this new choice is instantaneous.

(State modifications – the analyt-ical acts &c. [etc.]) –

This is t. [the] begin. [beginning] – sudden begin. [beginning] of t. [the] new life – – Sanctification is the progress of the same, after.

(c) Is it entire? All things are new – new character – new affect new hopes &c. [etc.] Choice covers whole mor. [moral] char. [character] – weak choice – may be in diff. [different] degrees. Some notice at first then others. Sin in Spef. [specific] ac. [action] may come – as benev. [benevolence] in miser ~

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(8) [centered]

Remarks ~

1 See whose the fault is that we are not all penitent now. (God is waiting our time.) We must change our course – we must repent – will not come without our action ~

2. See how to begin the work of personal reformation. Come home into heart – change the source of mor. [moral] ac [action] – – make a new internal change – put on a new character – & everything else will follow in due time ~

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(No. 21.) Sunday Eve - 28 May '48 [1848]. 24. Feb. '61 [1861] ~ Proverbs 23:7 ~ [centered] ~ For as he thinketh in his heart so is he ~ ~ Speak to meaning of the text – by reference to its connection. As a man's heart is – so is he. Words do not always indicate the heart's thoughts. The con -nection shows this to be the true meaning. Similar passages are in Pss [Psalms] 12:2 – 28:3 – – 62:4 – 55:21 –. Does not mean – As a man thinks he is – so is he – – Nor that if a man thinks he is right – that is enough & he may concern him-self no further –. But it may mean that the prevailing

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