Exercitationes Apologeticæ pro Divina Gratia (Apologetic Exercises for Divine Grace)

Author: Samuel Rutherford
Newly set type of the 1651 edition.
Text is in Latin.

Medium: Hi-fidelity Portable Document Format (PDF)
Last Updated: November 28, 2016
Download Size: 1.3 MB
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Publisher's Commentary: Written in Latin, this is Rutherford's first work, first published in 1636, and was the cause of his banishment to Aberdeen that same year. James Reid, in Memoirs of the Westminster Divines, summarizes the book: "A vindication of the orthodox doctrine of the divine decrees, of the efficacy of divine grace, and of man's free will, against the Jesuits and Arminians." The first Scottish Reformation under John Knox nearly a century before was nearly eaten away by Popish and Episcopalian influences. Non-conformist preachers were denied pulpits or silenced. Rutherford was among the "Scots Worthies" who labored in the second Reformation that swept all of Britain back toward orthodoxy, culminating in the Westminster Confession of Faith. Rutherford is an able thinker and debater, and a book such as this one was rightly feared by the Bishops.

For those who love Rutherford's Letters, it is worth noting that many of them are a direct result of the aforementioned banishment. Being deprived of his pulpit and of direct communication with his congregation, he resorted to letter-writing to communicate with his parishioners. Some of the richest and most beautiful of the Letters come from this period, a sure testament to God's Providence. Surely Rutherford chafed at the loss of ministry in Anwoth, but God instead caused Rutherford's ministry to bless many future generations through the means of this persecution.

A word about the quality of this document is appropriate here. This text was transcribed by a novice in the Latin language and may therefore contain transcription errors. The confusion between the lowercase "f" and the non-terminating lowercase "s" is the most likely cause of such errors, but there are many other possibilities. Our ultimate goal is to provide an English translation of this work, and it is likely that any such errors will be discovered and corrected at that time. In addition, in some cases, the manuscript being transcribed is unreadable due to printing errors or age-related document decay. These are printed in red to distinguish them from text that is more clear. We hope to correct these as more information becomes available. In the meantime, it is our hope that this document, imperfect as it is, may be helpful to those wishing to read this book. If you find an error of any kind in this book, please email the title, page number, and description to errata@portagepub.com.


  1. November 28, 2016: First Portage edition posted.

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