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have two Suits, and two Desires to him, , as well as pardoned, To there is a special one, that your Sins may be forgiven, Tye and Obligation upon God our Fa. another, that they niay be subdued ; so ber by Promise, not only to pardon Sin, he hath iwo solemn Engagements and but to purge from Sin ; not only to coTyes to satisfy you ; one to forgive your ver it with the Garment of Christ's Sins, and another to cleanse you from Righteousness, and the Breadth of his all Unrighteousness. The Soul that is infinite Love, but also to cleanse it by truly penitent, is not only desirous of his Spirit, effectually applying that Blood Pardon of Sin, that is not the chief or to the purifying of the Heart. only Design of such a Soul in Application where God hath bound himself volunco Cbrift ; but it is withal to be purified tarily, and out of Love, do not ye loose from Sin, and all Unrighteousness, and him by Unbelief, for that will bind you to have ungodly Lusts cleansed away : into à Prison ; but labour to receive And herein is the great Probation of such these gracious Promises, and to take him an One's Reality, it will not suffice or bound as he offers. Believe, I say, that: satisfy such an One, to be assured of De he will both forgive you, and in due livery from Wrath and Condemnation, Time will cleanfe your Heart from the but he must likewise be redeemed from Love and Delight of Sin ; believe his Sin, that it have no Dominion over him ; | Promife, and Engagement by Promise to he desires to be freed from Death, that both, and this will set to a Seal to his he may have his Conscience witbal pur- Truth and Faithfulness. There is noged from dead Works, to Jerve the li- thing in God to affright a Sinner, but ving God, Héb. ix. 14. He would have his Justice, Holiness and RighteousSin blotted out of an accusing Conscience, nefs; but unto thee, who in the humble that it may be purged out of the Affecti- Confeflion of thy Sins flies into Jesus ons of the Heart, and be would have Cbrift, that very Thing which did dif his Sins wahed away for this End, courage thee; may now encourage thee, especially, that he may be wasbed from and imbolden thee to come, for be is bis Sins, Rev. i, s. Now, as this is just and faithful to forgive Sins; his the great Defire and Design of such a Justice being now satisfied, is ingaged that
Heart, in which there is no Guile, to Way to forgive, not to punish. • have Sin purified and purged out of us,
1 John i. 10. If we say that we have not finned, we make
him a Liar, and his Word is not in us.
gion more confifts, than in the Nature, how abominable his Actions ; true and unfeigned Knowledge of our in a Word, what a Compound of Darkselves. The Heathen supposed that Sen ness and Wickedness he is, a Heap of tence, grali otauror, know tbyself, de- defiled Duft, and a Mass of Confusion, a scended from Heaven. It was indeed the Sink of Impiety and Iniquity ; even the Motto of the wiseft and moft religious best of Mankind, those of the rareft and amongst them; but certain it is, that the most refined Extraction, take chem at true and sincere Understanding of our their best Estate ; thus they are as Sepulselves, descends from the Father of chres painted without, and putrified withLights, and is a great Gift, as Man is in, outwardly adorned, and within full capable of, next to the Knowledge of of Rottenness and Corruption, tbe ImaGod himself. There is nothing more gination of bis Heart only Evil connecessary to Man, either as Man, or as tinually. Now, I say, liere is the great a Chriftian, either as indowed with Rea. Business and Labour of Religion, to bring fon, or profefling Religion, than that he a Man to the clear Difcerning of his own should be throughly acquainted with him. Nature, to represent unto him juftly his self, his own Heart, its Dispositions and own Image, as it is painted in the Word Inclinations, and Lufts, his Ways and of God, and presented in the Glass of the Actions, that while he travels abroad to Law ; and so by such a surprizing monother Creatures and Countries, he may ftruous Appearance, to affect his Heart not commit so thameful an Absurdity, as to Self-abhorrency in Dutt and Ashes, to be a Stranger at home, where he and to have this Representation, however ought to be best acquainted : Yet how unpleasant, yet most profitable, continualsad is it, that this which is so absolutely ly obversant to our Minds, that we may needful, and universally profitable, should not forget what manner of Persons we be lying under the manyest Difficulties are. Truly, 1 may say, if there be a in the Attainment of it? So that there is Perfection in this Eftate of Imperfection, nothing harder, than to bring a Man to herein it consists; and if there be any a perfect Understanding of himself, what Attainment of a Christian, I account this a vile, haughty and base Creature he is,
the greatest, to be truly sensible of himself, only say unto them, that your Self-deceiand vile in his own Eyes.
ving is not so subtile, but it may soon be It was the Custom of Philip King of discerned, your Lie is gross, and quickly Macedonia, after he had overcome the feen through. But I would turn myself famous Republick of Greece, to have a to you Christians, who are in some young Man to falute him first every Mor. Measure acquainted with your selyes, yet ning with these Words, Philippe bomo there is something against you from this ës, Pbilip tbou art a Man, to the End Word; after ye have once got fome that he might be daily minded of his Peace from the Challenge of Sin, and Mortality and the Unconstancy of hu. Hope of Pardon, you many Times fall man Affairs, least he should be puft up out of Acquaintance with yourselves, with his Victory ; and this was done be having attained by the Lord's Grace, to fore
any could have Access to speak with some Restraint of the more visible Outbim, as if it were, to season and prepare breakings of Sin, you have not that Oc him for the Actions of the Day: But o, casion to know yourselves by, and so how much more ought a Christian to you remain Strangers to your Hearts, train up his own Heart, and accustom it and fall into better liking with yourthis Way, to be his continual Remem. felves, than the first sight of yourselves brancer of himself, to suggest continually permitted you. Now, my Beloved in into his Mind, and whisper this first into the Lord, herein you are to be blamed, his Ear in the Morning, and Mid-day, that you do not rather go into the Founand Evening, peccator es, thou art a rain, and there behold the Screams, than Sinner, to hold our own Image con only to behold, the Fountain in the tinually before us, in Prayer and Praises, Streams; you ought rather upon the in Restraints, in Liberties of Spirit, in Lord's Testimony of Man, to believe religious Actions, and in all our ordi- what is in you, before you find it, and nary Conversation, that it might salt and see it breaking out, and keep this Chaseason all our Thoughts, Words and racter continually in your Sight, which Deeds, and keep them from that ordi- will be more powerful to humble you, nary Putrification, and Corruption of Pride than many Out-breakings. I think we and Self-conceit, which maketh all our should be so well acquainted with our Ointment stink.
own Natures, as to account nothing If we say we have no Sin, we make strange to them that we see abroad, bim a Liar. Why is this repeated a- but rather think all the Grosiness and gain? but to sew unto us, even to you wickedness of Men suitable and correChristians who believe in Christ, and are spondent to our Spirits, to that Root of wafhen in his Blood, how hard it is to Birterness that is in them ; 1 he Goodness know ourselves aright. If we speak of of God in restraining the Appearance the grosser Sort of Persons, they scarce of that in us, which is within us in Reknow any Sin, nor the Nature and Vile ality, should rather increase the Sense of ness of any that they know, therefore our own Wickedness, than diminish it in they live in Security and Peace, and bless our View. themselves in their own Hearts, as if Indeed, Self love is chat which blinds they had no Sin ; for such, I say, I shall us, and bemists us in the sight of our
felves, we look upon ourselves though may prevent all Men's Judgments of thee, this false Medium, and it represents all in judging thyself all Things that Men Things more beautiful than they are ; can judge thee, that is, a: Cbief of Sinand therefore the Apostle hath Reason to ners, that hach the Root of all Sin in say, we deceive ourselves, and we make thee ; and so thou may anticipate the God a Liar. O, how much practical divine Judgment too, for if we judge Self-deceit is there in the Application ourselves, we sball not be judged. Laof Truth? There are many Errors con- bour thou to know these Evils that are trary to the Truths themselves, and ma incident to thy Nature, before others can ny Deceivers, and deceived, who spread know them, that is, in the Root and them : But I believe there is more Er Fountain, before they come to the Fruit rors committed by Men, in the Appli- and Stream ; to know Sins in the first cation of Truths to their own Hearts, Conceptions of them, before they come than in the Contemplation of it; and to such Productions as are visible; and more self-deceiving, than deceiving of this shall keep thee humble, and preser: e others. It is strange to think, how found thee from much Sin, and thou malt not and clear, and distinct a Man's Judg. deceive thyself, nor dishonour God, in ment will be againft those Evils in others, making him a Liar, but rather set to thy which yet he feeth not in himself; how Seal to his Truth, and bis Word sball many Christians will be able to decypher abide in tbee. the Nature of some Vices, and unbowel There is a common Rule that we have the Evils of them, and be quick-lighted in judging ourselves, by comparing our to espy the least Appearance of them in selves amongst ourselves, which (as Paul another, and to condemn is; and yet so faith) is not wisdom, 2 Cor. X. 12. When partial are they in judging themselves, we do not measure ourselves by the perSelf-love so purblinds them in this Refect Rule of God's boly Word, but paAection, that they cannot discern that in rallel ourselves with other persons, who themselves, which others cannot but dif- are still defective from the Rule, fac cern. How often do Men declaim against further from it, than any one is from Pride, and Covetousness, and Selfseek another : This is the ordinary Method ing, and other Evils of that Kind ? they of the judging of Self-love; we compare will pour out a Flood of Eloquence and with the worst Persons, and if we be not Zéal againft them; and yet it is strange to bad as they, we think ourselves gocd; they do not advert, that they are accusing if not so ignorant as some are, we prethemselves, and impannelling themselves fume that we know, if not fo profane in such Discourses, tho' others, it may as many, we believe ourselves religious. be, will easily perceive a Predominancy Lord, I am not as this Publican, fo of these Evils in them. Wbo art thou, faith many in their Hearts, there's a O Man, who judgeth anotber, and doejt Curser, a Swearer, a Drunkard, a band the same Things? Can't thou escape ignorant Soul, that negleAs Prayer in God's Judgment ? Rom. ii. 1. Con private and publick, and upon these Ruins sider this, o Christian, that thou may of others Sins, they build some better learn to turn the Edge of all thy Censures Estimation of themselves. But, I pray and Convictions againit thyself, that thou / you, What will that avail you to be una
like them, if you be more unlike your scend in Humility ; but when our Rule Pattern, than they are unlike you? It and Pattern descends to Men of like Inmay be, others will compare with these firmities, then our Pride and Self-conceit that are good, but it is with that which ascends ; and the higher we be that Way is worst in them, and not that which is in our own Account, the lower we are beft; how often do Men reckon this indeed, and in God's Account ; and the Way, here is a good Man, here is an e lower we be in ourselves, we lose nominent Person, yet he is such and such, thing by it; for, as God is higher in our fubject to such Infirmities, and here Self Account, fo we are higher in God's acs love flatters itself, and by flattering, decount, according to that standing Rule, ceives itself. My Beloved, let us learn Mat. xxiii. 12. Whosoever fall exalt to establish a more perfect Rule, which bimself, soall be abased, and be that may shew all our Imperfe&tions : Let our ball bumble bimself, jball be exalted. Rule ascend, that our Hearts may de
i John ii
unty you, that ye Jin not. And if any Man Jin, we have an Advocate with the Father, &c.
HE Gospel' is an entire uniform | Confidence ; another may pretend to the
Piece, all the Paris of it are inter- Study of Holiness and Obedience, and woven through other, and interchange may endeavour something that way to ably knit together ; so that there can be do known Duties, and abstain from gross no dividing of it, no more than of Christ's Sins. Now, I say, if the first do not Coat that was without Seam. If you conjoin the Study of the second; and, if have it 'not aitogether by the divine Lor, the second do not lay down the first as you
cannot truly have any part of it, for the Foundation, both of them embrace they are so knit together, that if ye dif- a Shadow for the Thing itself, because joyn them, you destroy them; and if they they separate these Things that God hath ceale to be together, they cease altogether joined, and so can have no Being but in to be. I speak this, because there may Mens Fancy, when they are not conbe Pretensions to some abstracted Parts joined. He that would pretend to a of Chriftianity; one Man pretends to Righteousness of Cbrift without hin, must Faith in Jesus Cbrift, and Perswalion of withal ftudy to have the Righteousness Pardon of Sin, and in this there may be of the Law fulfiiled within him ; and he some secret glorying arising from that that endeavours to have Holiness within,