Monday, November 2, 2009

Duties are Ours, Events are God's - Part 2

In a previous blog post, I aimed to identify the originator of the famous saying "Duties are ours, events are God's." It was a maxim of Matthew Henry, Stonewall Jackson, and others. I traced it back to a similar saying of Pierre Corneille, the French playwright, as used in a play that was produced in 1639.

Since then, I have done a little more research and found that besides Matthew Henry, it was a saying of his father Philip Henry. Philip, moreover, read the Letters of Samuel Rutherford, and in fact, Rutherford articulated this very expression in a letter dated March 7, 1637, to David Dickson.

Letter CX (March 7, 1637), Letters of Samuel Rutherford (1891 ed.), p. 226:

Now for my case: I think that the council should be essayed, and the event referred to God; -- duties are ours, and events are God's.

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