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to confirm our title to the heavenly inheri-SERM.
SERM.which nothing can be more unaccountable, VIII. considering how fully such pretences are dis
approved by plain reason, and the current of the scripture declarations. Others abuse the doctrine of Christ's facrifice, and of faith in his blood, by putting it in the place of a good conscience for giving us boldness in the judgment. But certainly to hope in Christ for obtaining the favour of God, while men continue in their transgressions, is to make him the minister of fin, and to make void the divine law, which be came not to destroy but to fulfil, Consider his own decision of this point, Matt, vii. 24. Whosoever heareth these sayings of mine and doth them, I will liken bim to a wife man, wbo built his house upon a Rock; and the rain defcended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house, and it fell not, for, it was founded upon a rock. And every one that beareth these sayings of mine and doth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man who built bis house upon the sand; and the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house, and it fell, and great was the fall of it.
Loying CHRIST above all, the Cha
racter of his true Disciples.
He that loveth Father or Mother more than
ine, is not worthy of me. And be that
HE chapter of which my text is a SERM. part, contains the first and fo- IX.
lemn charge which our Saviour gave his apostles when he fent them forth to preach the gospel. As that was a very arduous undertaking, and consequences of the greatest moment depended upon it, to the service of God, and the good of mankind, it was necessary they should be well instructed how to behave themselves in it. And because they were to meet with such opposition from the ignorance and prejudimen, as could not be conquered by
SERM. the meer force of plain reason and persuaIX.
sion, therefore were they furnished with extraordinary powers to do such miracles as might engage the most stupid to attend to their doctrine. Their master instructs them how to conduct themselves in the exercise of those powers, and in general to regulate their whole deportment with prudence and fimplicity, so as they might give no offence, but with unblemish'd characters successfully pursue the great design of their mission. One article relating to this embaffy was of the last moment, and it is very largely insisted on. The apostles were to suffer grievous persecution, being sent out as sheep among wolves, men of favage and barbarous tempers, inflamed with a superstious passionate zeal, who would, without regard to their innocence, treat them with
rage. Their Lord endeavours to fortify their minds against that event, arguing from a variety of topics for equanimity and patience under all their sufferings : Such as, that he had submitted himself to the same state, and furely then they had no reason to repine, nor to hope for an exemption from it. For " the disciple is not above his master, nor the
" servant above his Lord.” That in spite SERM.
peace and charity among men, but