A term made use of to denote the operations of the Divine Being upon the mind. This doctrine of divine influences has been much called in question of late; but we may ask,
1. What doctrine can be more reasonable? "The operations which the power of God carries on in the natural world are no less mysterious than those which the Spirit performs in the moral world. If men, by their councils and suggestions, can influence the minds of one another, must not divine suggestion produce a much greater effect? Surely the Father of spirits, by a thousand ways, has access to the spirits he has made, so as to give them what determination, or impart to them what assistance he thinks proper, without injuring their frame or disturbing their rational powers." We may observe,
2. Nothing can be more scriptural. Eminent men from the patriarchal age down to St. John, the latest writer, believed in this doctrine, and ascribed their religious feelings to this source. Our Lord strongly and repeatedly inculcated this truth; and that he did not mean miraculous, but moral influences of the Spirit, is evident, John 3:3
. Matthew 7:22-23
. John 6:44
; John 6:46
See also, John 12:32
; John 12:40
. Romans 8:9
. 1 Corinthians 2:14
3. And we may add, nothing can be more necessary, if we consider the natural depravity of the heart, and the insufficiency of all human means to render ourselves either holy or happy without a supernatural power.
See William's Historic Defence of Experimental Religion; Williams's Answer to Belsham, let. 13; Hurrion's Sermons on the Spirit; Owen on the Spirit.