« ПредыдущаяПродолжить »
8. The Weak beleever bach not such cbeerful expectations, nor quiet fubmiffions as the strong believer.
The strong believer is at it as the Church in Micah, My God will hear me, and if he denies a particular good, yet he can fit down and fing; when be is going to prayer he chears up bis heart with a confidence on God, and when be findes God determining and revealing bis will, there he bleffech God, and follows his calling. But the weak believer is app to foreftal a mercy, he cannot fee a plain way for his grant, nor easily quiet heart after his denial,
9: The efficacy of temptations doth more intangle the weak beleever then the strong, like the weaker vefsel at
sea amidit che greater waves; Satan doch coufen. his soul with ease, and ever and anon disrobes him of his comforts like a lewd fubcile enemy, he forceth the weak believer often to try and clear his title, and increaseth mistakes in all passages 'twixt God and the soul.
1. If he doth cast himself on mercy, then it is presumption ; If he holds off, cben it is infidelity and rejeđing of Christ.
2. If he doubts, then it is despaire cand a forsaking of God.
3. If he finnes; then it is unpardonable, because lince knowledge and mercy,
4. If he findes distractions in dane, then this is thypocrilie in the heart. 5
is based 5. If he meets with bells juggeftions (of which Satan is only the Author) O then, who could be in Christ and have such abominable thoughts ! **** ***
6. If the ordinarices do not preferrely comforex Ochen, they are scaled up and there is no faich, volle the Word would profic.
..1!'*:. 7. If every corruption be not fubdued in every degree and motion and d&, then, vertue is not gone from Cbrift,che hcare is ftill nought, and the faich unsound.id
8. If not the same constant tenor of (mart affe&tions why then, there was never any true love of God, no reverence of him now, Aor fear, nor doties, but the soul is dead, utterly hardened ; and God hath no pleasure in it.
9. If God. doth answer the soul, yea, but that is but an imagination. If he doch not answer, why? then is is cleare that God neither dorhinor will ever regard you. (110. If I do not go to the Suorament, wbg? then thou flighs. oft Chrift, and his blood: If I go and come away
0 then thou waft unbeleeving, or elle chou hadft been sent away with joy and increase.
11. If I do not put on for grace, then thou art wicked : IfI
put on far grace, then thou art so wicked that God will not be How it on thee. Thus doth Satan involve, and distresse, and let the soul of a weak Believer (like a man at cbelle) forward and backward; she makes him to fuspect every mercy, and every giace, and every affe&tion, and every duty, and every promise and every Ordinance;so violently doth he iols though he cannot to. tally fink, the heart of a weak believer. .... b)01. 173218!
scrie Motiveneto ftrive to grearen thy faitb. TH
His is a fagre of trub. True grace is sising, dead things
do moulder, and artificial things remaine the same, but the diving cbilde is growing co a full Nature Phil
. 3. Not ibough we had already attained the graine of mustard-feed grows, and che/moaking fax pili flame. Presumption hath all its perfections at first.
2. This is a rigbe answer of great means. Tothom much ingin ven, of bem muca as required. Pbar adlos lenne Ikine are called j!_favoured, because in a great and large pasture." All is noc right when the breasts are full, and the child is still weak. The Gospel should be revealed from faith to fajib, Rom, 1.
3. The greater falch is the greater perfection : every degree of farther grace is like a star of greaper magnitude, which differ iw glory from another, an addition of faith to faith is an adding co che treasury, an enriching of the soul, a farther clarifying of it. The leffe of grace, the more of corruprion, and the more of corroption the more of imperfection.
4. The greater fajih, the greater comfort ; the Minde will have fewer doubts , Will bath fewer fears, Conscience more settledness,the soul more sights of God, and tastes of Christ. Ex. periences in life, and confidence in death,
5. The greater faith will be the greater belp in times of desertion, in times of tryal, in times of temptation, in times of affli&ion, aod greater help to all active duy, and paffive changes. Thou knoweft not what may befall thee in evil times, then thou wouldest be able to commit, co submit, to conquer, to fuffer, to do much better, if thy faith were much greater.
Fto beleeue in the Lord Jesus Cbrist be the
a man were wounded deeply, and there were but one plaister which could cure, and this were presented unto him, would he not put out his hand to receive and apply it, the love of life would easily incline him,
Why? brethreo, not a man of us but hath a deadly wound by finne, and there is no remedy for the sinful soul, but in the blood of Chrift: 0, if the love of life will constraine us much, lec be love of eternal life, the love of our fouls, of our salvation perswade os much more to get faith, which gets Christ,who gets. Talvation for our souls.
There are divers things which I will couch upon in the finilh- 4. Brauches.. ing of this Ufe, viz
1. The Motives to perswade and draw the heart to pat our for this faving faith in the Lord Jesus Chrift.
2. The impediments and bindrances, which stop the foul from believing on the Lord Jesus Christ, which we must affay to an fwer and remove, as he did the body of Afabel which stayed the people in their purfuit.
3. The means or adjuments, and furtherances to breed this believing quality in the foul.
4. There'olutions or answerings of several doubtful grounds and arguments which inrangle the heart of a sensible finner, ·and which he holds out as strong prerences, why he should not by faith close with Jesus Christ.
Now that great and holy God, who is the Anchor of faith, and finisher thereof, whose word is the word of faith, and by whose Almighty working the hearts of men are perswaded to believe, let him so direct me in speaking, and all of us in bearing, that after all his gracious and manifold revelations and offers of our Lord Jesus Christ, our unbelieving hearts may be subdued, and true faich may be wrought in us all to receive the Lord Jesus Christ to our eternal saluerion.
First the Motives.
whom the do&rinal parts of our natural misery, and of our purchased felicity are not hidden mysteries, and therefore I trolt that the fucceeding arguments and motives shall finde little stop in your vnderstandings, but shall the more easily and powerfully passe down into your hearts and affections, co perswade and excite you to lay our all your strength, and that speedily, to get this faith in the Lord Jesus Christ: Thus then
First, sadly and seriously consider the state of Positive infided lity. Divines observe a twofold infidelity. One is Negative, which is among the Hearbens to whom
Chrift is not revealed, and therefore they do not believe; it coolists both in the absence of the quality of faith, as also in the object and doctrine of faith. This Sunne of the Gospel bath: not rifen unto them, and therefore they fit still in the regia ons of darknese, and (for ought we know) in the valley of death
Another is Poirive, which is incident unto us Christians, to whom the arm of the Lord is revealed; Christ is manifested as the body of the Sun by the beams of light, so he by the brightoesse and evidence of the Gospel, and yet che foule knows bim not, receives him not, doch not take him both as Lord and Saviour,
Of this there are several degrees, and all of them fearfully dangerous , to speak the truth plainly, damnable.
1. A Carelefc neglelting of ibe Lord of life, à not minding of thac Gingular mercy and goodnesse which God hath treasured in Christ, and reveales and offers to sinful men,
2. A fighting of him and bis excellencies, which is a preferring, as it were,
Barrabas before him; a bestowing of our hearcs, and studies, and labours, and delights, and services, not on him but either on our finnes, or upon the world, in the rivers of its pleasures, and in the mountaines of its profits.
3. A refwfing of his Articles and Covenants, which is a breake. ing off, and vile disliking of those tearms upon which be offers himself co be ours : we would bring him to termes of competition with sinne, or the creature; we would abridge his holy and Lordly Scepter, like what we please, do what we list, have him to be our Saviour, and finne to be our Ruler, we would bestow our saferies on him, and our services upon the World, we will not freely and fully consent to all-chat he is, nor fubmit to all that ke proposerb, or may befall us with bim and for him ; And so like the vaine Merchant, we misle the pearles, because we will not go to the price : We enjoy our selves still, and our finnes, and our world too, but we forsake our mercies for tying vanities; the foul is Chriftlefje still, because thus sordidJy unbeleeving