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The preaching and bearing of the Gospel of fingular use.
He first use shall be for Information, which consists in many proficable consectaries or inferences, which will flow from chis cruch. If beleeving in the Lord Jesus Christ be the only way. to be saved. Then first, hence it will follow;
That the preaching of ibe Gospel sr worthy the #bile, it is of necessary and fingular consequence. Peruse chat. place, Rom.1.16. lam not ashamed of obe Gospel of Cbrift , for it is the power of God'urto salvation to every one ibat beleeverb, verle, 17. for there is the righteousnesse of God revealed from faieb to faisl, as it is Written, ebejus mall live by faith. The Apostle presents cwo arguments of bis honourable estimation, and confident preaching of the Gospel.
1. One is, that it is the power of God to salvation (that is) it is the instrument which God usech, and into which be doth im-, print a power to save men :, Iç is called the potter of God 10 falo, vation, not only io refpc&t of revelation, because it doth ma. nifeft and declare the fole means of reconciliation'twixt God and man, but also in sesped of operation and efficacy , because i: doth communicate and produce that fairb in defu Chrift by which we are saved
2. Another is that it comprehends the righteousnelle of God, which faith only dorbrake: By the righteousnesse of God, he understands that rigbieousnelle whereby a man is justified in the fight of God, and it is called the rigbícousnesse of God, be. cause God is the Aurbour and giver ofic,ie is wrought and given by God in Jesus Christ; and also because it is approved and force Will God at his Tribunal and judgement-seat. See another
place, Ephef.1.13. In whom he also trusted after that ye beard the word of iruth, the Gospel of your salvation ; He in the precedent verfes doch enomerate many singular and heavenly bleflings, amongst which brist was one, and he doch in this verse exprefle the order and manner how they come to be interessed in him, viz, by crufting, or believing and they come to thac truft. ing and beleeving by the Gespel, which he stiles a word of truth, and a meflage of salvation.
it Tell me feriously, is not salvation the grear scope and sime of your most choise and sober thoughts and can any aco caine that but by Chrift? and can you bave Christ without faith?
How preciously deare (then) unto you should the Ministry of the Gospel be, which is the instrument of God, to produce that faith, which layes hold on that Christ, by whom only we are faved! Faith comes by hearing; and bearing by rhe Word of God, lo che Apostle, Rom, 10.19. and foon 6.45. Every man thai barb heard and learnedos ebe Farber, comerb to me,
He is an enemy to his own salvation, who fligbes the preaching of the Gospel; and he is an enemy to the Salvation of orbers, who labours to oppreffe and extinguislo ir: for if salvation be by faith in Chrift, and that faith depends on the Gospel, Then,
For oor parts, let us blefe God for his Gopel. Let us for ever honour and refpe&t she message of the Gospel, yea, let'us bearrily embrace the Doctrine, and power of the GospelLet the feet of ebem which bring the glad tyding!. of salvation, be acceptable unto es, for as much as saluation, and Chrift, and faith are all of them annexed unto the Gospel.
2. Then hence ic will follow, that a meer bearing of Cbrift and his doétrine will not save, if beleeving be the only way.
There are divers sorts of hearing. Three forts of
One with incogitancy,when perhaps the Ear is open, but the hearing.
minde is afbeep, and heeds not that precious obje& reveale ed.
Another with Reluctancy, when the care is open, and the mind attentive, but the beart striving again the irurb and goodneffe of
word. Another with Conformity when the car beares, and the
understanding yields, and the bear: embracesh. Now it is this Jarcer kinde of hearing, which brings to salvation. That bearing which confifts only in the delivery of the message, which brings fome ihing from God to us, this will not fave; buc fuch an hearing as brings back something from us to God, which is accompanied with belreving, which cornes home the soul to the acceptanceand embracing of lefus Christ, this is the only hearing to save our foules. A motion made and tendred doth not conclude a match, but a motion consenred unto and embraced.
3. If beleeving in Jesus Christ be the only way of life, then Iefus Christ fould be the main scope and mark of all our preaching and ftudying, 1 Cor. 2.2. I determined not to know any thing among you, aveleles Christ and bim crucified. It was the maine cheame and subject upoa which that blesed Apostle did spend himself: Look as it is with a Physician, chat though he doch sometimes lance, and sometimes make very sick, and sometimes reftraine to ftri etneffe of dier, and sometime binde and trouble the patient, and sometimes relieve him with precious cordials; though these adions are different among themfelves,yet chey do concenter in one end, which is health and life. So whaber Ministers preach the knowledge of finne, or whether they strive to make men senGble of finne, or whecher they let Alie, the acrows of Gods chreachings upon the conscience of sioners, or whether they couch on the mercy Seat; all the end and fcape is, or should be to bring men to Clarist.co make Christ more glorioasia, che eyes of finners, and to iacline their hearts to accept and embrace bin.'
Christ may be preached two ways.
Either Explicitly, when he in his person, or offices , or be: Christ preachs nefics, is che onlg matter which is handled and published.
Or Virtually, when he is the end of that matter , wbich is delivered. One of thefc wayos , Cheift ftilb so be preached Do I meet with a broken and ami&ed spiric,groaning under che load of sinful Nature and life, pinting after the Pince of life and peace , willing to yield up it self to all the conditions of God in Chrilt? Here now I am to life up Christ on his Crosse to spread his armes, to shew unto that broken Spirit, the very heart blood of Jesus Christ poured out for the remif
ed two wayes.
sion of linnes, to be a propitiatory Sacrifice for his soule. Do I meet with an oblinaic and proud fpirie, which dares to dific justice and presumi sously to areign mercy. Here I open the indig, nation of God against sinne, of purpo:c to awaken the conscience, co cast down she high and lofty imaginations, and for no other end but this. That such a person being now come to the sense of his misery, may fily be dire&ed, and karon. ably encouraged to the light and fruition of his remedy in Chrift.
Ourthly, If that beleeving in Jesus Christ be the
Secondly, of the nature and definition of it: together with-rome Arguments to evince, that it is only by and * for Chrift; and some Answers to the choisest objectia
Or the wird (iuftification) it hach a double acception an
or holy qualities.
nounce a man just by an all of jurisdiction, (tha: is) a judiciary sentence to pronounce him righteous, and free
from gile and condemnation. And thus is it (for ought I can learn) altogether ofed and fened in the Scriptures, which speak of our justification before God vize) for such an action of God, whereby. after the manaer of a judge he absolveth and acquicceth an accused person. Rom. 8. 33. who fall luy any ibing to the charge of Gods Eliæ ? it is God that justificih, verle 34. who is be chat condemnetbo? where you have a manifcft Antithesis, or opposition 'cwist juftification and condemn dijos ; now as condemnation is an adioa of the Judge, a sentence of his pronouncing the person gilty and obnoxious, so justification (being contrary to it) must im. port an adion or sentence acquitting and ablolving. Yea,and again, as condemnation most improperly and abusively must be interpreted, if we expound it to be a making of a man so, and so finful by infufion; fo is justification unrightly conceited, when mea make it co be a making of a person just by infusion of holinelle.
leis obferved, that in this kinde of justification, vizi, which is judicial. There are foure persons as it were,
First, the Agent. One who begins the fuit,accuseth, Jayeth such and such ihings co the charge of another, the Apostle said it, Rom.8. 33. who shall lay any thing, so the charge?&c.
Secondly, the Patient, the person acculed and charged with default, and offence, and gile..
Thirdly, the Advocate, who endeavours to vindicate the parry so charged from the accusation, cither by declaring the inro. cency of the person, or impleading fatisfaction. Fourthly, the fudge , who in juft.fication of that person,