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earth, and good-will to men, Luke, ii. 14. Hear ́ the facramental words, 1 Cor. xi. 25. “This is the New Teftament in my blood." Is not the blood of the everlasting covenant fufficient to affure you ? Is not the covenant in which God offers himself to you as your God, drawn with the blood of God? Behold, then, the blood of the covenant, and no more doubt your welcome. (3.) You have his word for it. tions are breathed out to you from the throne of grace in Christ. Hear the tenor of the covenant, Heb. viii. 1o. "For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Ifrael after those days, faith the Lord; I will put my laws into their mind, and write them in their hearts; and I will be to them a God, and they fhall be to me a people." Sce how it is offered unto all to whom the gofpel comes, Ifa. lxv. 1. 2. John, vi. 37. Rev. xxii. 17. Nay, you are commanded to accept it: Luke, xiv. 23. "Compel them to come in, that my house may be filled." 1 John, iii. 23. "This is his commandment, that we should believe on the name of his Son Jefus Christ." Many are in other cafes difputing, and doubting themfelves out of their duty, but here falvation lies at ftake. Will you, then, doubt your welcome to obey the command of God?
(4.) You must take God in Chrift for your God, or you are eternally ruined. Debate the matter as long as you will, this is the course you must take, or the wrath of God will lie on you for ever. Mifs this hold, and you fink affuredly into the bottomless pit: John, iii. 36. “He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life; and he that believeth not the Son fhall not fee life, but the wrath of God abideth on him." Now, if you must do it, it is weakness and folly not to Z 2
do it with
with full affurance of faith. If a drowning man must seize a rope to draw himself to land, does not common sense say, the firmer he feizes it, he is the more fafe? If the hand tremble, and be like to let go the hold, will he not wrestle against death? So, in like manner fhould we, with full affurance of faith, keep our hold of Chrift, and thus draw near to God.-But here fome may propofe a
Question, How may we be helped to this full affurance of faith in taking God for our God in Chrift? As to this I answer, Stedfaftly believe the doctrine of the gofpel, which is the mean which the Spirit makes ufe of to beget and increase faith Rom. x. 17. "Faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God." And therefore ftill hold by the word. I apprehend, if we would fearch to the root of the doubts, fears, and uncertainty in the matter of believing in Christ, we would find the root of most, if not all of them, is an error in the first concoction, an uncertainty as to the doctrine of the gofpel. Therefore labour to be fully and feelingly affured of the doctrine of your lost state by nature, on the teftimony of the word. Begin there, and ply your faith as to this doctrine. It is eafieft, because an unenlightened confcience even goes along with it; but if I believe my loft ftate upon the teftimony of that word, I am helped the rather to believe the way of my recovery on the teftimony of the fame word.
Believe ye, then, with full affurance, that you are in yourselves guilty creatures, bound over to the wrath of God for time and eternity, and that by no means ye are able to remove that guilt, by all that ye are capable to do or fuffer? Believeft thou this? It is gofpel-doctrine, Eph. ii. 3.
thy reach, "And
dead in tref
«And were by nature the children of wrath, as others." Again, Do you believe that y altogether corrupt and unholy, and are utt able to make for yourselves either a holy life, that you are no more able to fub a luft, than to procure yourself a pardon, the breaking of the power of fin is as far abg as the removing the guilt of it? Ep' you hath he quickened, who we paffes and fins." Do you believ he doctrine of falvation through Jefus Chrift eld forth in the gofpel? You cannot believe the Lord to falvation, but as you give an aff to this doctrine by faith. This is the bottor on which faith proceeds, when laying hold. God in Chrift.-Do you believe, with full rance, that there is no way to make miferab nan happy again, but by the enjoyment of G as his own God? O for the full affurance of this! it would effectually determine those who are hanging on this day about the world's door, and that of their lufts.-Do you 4 believe that there is no other way to come to the enjoyment of God as our God, but through Jefus Chrift, who was crucified without the gates of Jerufalem? Acts, iv. 12. " Neither is there fal-vation in any other; for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be faved." If fo, his name would be precious. Do you believe that there is no way to be faved from guilt, but by his righteoufnefs, and from pollution, but by his Spirit?
Do you believe that Jefus Chrift is the Son of God, that he took upon him man's nature, and fuffered in it to fatisfy the justice of God, that he might thus by his blood bring finners again to God, to enjoy him as their God? Eph. ii. 13. " But, now, in Christ Jefus, ye who sometimes were far 23 off,
off, are made nigh by the blood of Chrift."-Do you believe that the blood of Chrift is the blood of God, and that therefore it is a cement truly fufficient to knit or join a holy just God, and any guilty finner what foever, who comes unto God through him? This is gofpel-truth: John, i. 7. "And the blood of Jefus Chrift his Son cleanseth us from all fin."-Heb. vii. 25. "Wherefore he is able also to save to the uttermost, all that come unto God by him, seeing he ever liveth to make interceffion for them." Believeft thou this? If thou believeft it not, how can it be expected that thou fhouldft draw near to God, feeing the only way of access to God is to thy unbelieving heart not fufficient to bear the weight of a guilty foul? If thou fayeft thou doft believe, then, to try this, I would ask thee, Doft thou believe that this blood is a cement fufficient to join thy guilty foul, even thine, to God? to bear thy weight, who perhaps thinkeft there was never one upon it with fuch a load of guilt? If not, then thou doft not believe the doctrine of the gofpel, Heb. vii. 25. already quoted. If thou dost believe all this, then,
Do you also believe, that whatfoever guilty finner will come to God through him, may have the benefit of that fufficiency of his blood, that is, that God fhall be his God, that he fhall have the righteousness of God, even God-man, to cover all his fins, the Spirit of Chrift to fanctify him, and make him like God? This is gofpel-truth, Ifa. lv. 1.-3. Rev. iii. 18. and chap. xxii. 17. Do you believe this? If not, you cannot draw near to God indeed; it cannot be expected that you, who give no credit to his word, will venture on himfelf. But if you fay you do believe, then dost thou alfo believe, that if thou comeft to God
through him, thou, even thou, fhalt have this benefit? If thou ftoppeft here, then I do not know but devils go farther in believing than thou doft, namely, to believe this general propofition, without excepting fo much as thee. But thou, monftrous difhonourer of the blood of Christ, and the truth of God, read thy fin, tremble, and repent: 1 John, v. ro. "He that believeth on the Son of God hath the witness in himself; he that believeth not God, hath made him a liar, because he believeth not the record that God gave of his Son." But if thou doft, with full affurance, believe this, then what remains, but that thou draw near with full affurance of faith? Take God in Christ for thy God, without in the least doubting of thy welcome.-This drawing near with full affurance of faith is in its nature,
2. To claim God in Christ as your God, without doubting of your title. Having taken him as your God, do not stand debating whether or not he is yours; only believe, believe he is yours: Jer. iii. 4. "Wilt thou not from this time cry unto me, My Father, thou art the guide of my youth?" What the better will you be of him, if he be not yours? John, i. 12." But as many as received him, to them he gave power to become the fons of God, even to them that believe on his name." I must content myself at this time, only to offer two or three things on this exercife: -As,
(1.) When thou takeft God for thy God in Chrift with a true heart, canst thou doubt thy title, without difhonouring the blood of Chrift and the truth of God? For these two do fecure it. Doft thou not fo far difhonour him, who is fet over the