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expected in Judea, where he began his mi-Serm.
way for engaging the attention of dif-
But, when men became his profess’d subjects, embrac'd his religion, and entered into the kingdom of God, upon these terms, or into the christian state
Serm.laws, or rules of their obedience, were deVI. clared by him in his other discourses ; par
ticularly in his sermon on the mount, and and most clearly affertain’d by the example of his own life: and they appear to be no other than the moral law, the eternal and invariable law of nature, abridg'd in those moral, and perpetually binding precepts, which Mofes gave to the Israelites, containing that love, confidence, submission, and obedience we owe to the deity; and the mutual offices of righteousness and charity we are bound to perform to one another. · To this end the precepts of the law are vindicated from the defective and corrupt interpretations of the Jewish doctors, and a more strict purity and virtue, enjoin'd by Jesus Christ, than what was practis'd, or so much as understood by them. He exprefly declares to his hearers * except your righteousness shall exceed the righteousness of the Scribes and Pharisees, ye fall in no case enter into the kingdom of heaven ; and all along, he uniformly pursues the same design throughout the whole course of his teaching ; constantly requiring of all his disciples, fincere holiness and conformity to the will of
God, * Matth. V. 20.
God, as indispensably necessary to their ob-SERM.
that sentences will then be pronounced
If this be a true account of our Saviour's doctrine in the gospels, as I think it will plainly appear to every one who reads them, attentively to be, there can be no doubt concerning the terms of our acceptance with God, which he has fix'd. The conditions of our becoming the disciples of Christ are faith and repentance; to which, if we be sincere, the forgiveness of all our past fins is annexed; and the condition of our title to the final happiness Christ has promis'd to his disciples, is a perfevering stedfastnefs in obeying the immutable moral laws of God; or in practising the virtues of fobriety, godliness, justice and mercy.
SERM. But, as I observed before, a controversy
of the christian state, about the necessity of
vour to explain his doctrine of justification SERM.
from the text to have a necessary con-
In the first place, let us consider the meaning of this apostle's doctrine of justification by grace without works. That he teaches this is plain to any one who reads his epistles, Rom. iii. 24. having largely prov'd, that all men had finned and were corrupt, both Jews and Gentiles; that all had fallen short of the glory of God, and were concluded under wrath; he says, they are justified freely by grace, thro' the redemption that is in Christ Jefus. And in the 11th chapter, having discoursed of the rejection of the Jews, that is, the body of the nation for their disobedience to the gospel, he says, that as formerly, in the days of Elias, when there was a general de fection of the Israelites to idolatry, God reserved to himself seven thousand who did not bow the knee to the image of Baal ; fo