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Serm. Day of Account a strict Enquiry will be
III. made, not only how we have believed, but

also how we have lived, ---that according to
our Deeds, as well as our Faith will a
Recompense be rendered unto us, and They,
that have done Good, shall come forth unto
the Resurrection of Life (i). As many as
walk according to this Rule, Peace be on
them, and Mercy, and upon the Ifrael of
God (k).

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Philipp. ii. 12, 13. ------Work out your own Salva

tion with Fear and Trembling.. For it is God, that worketh in

you both to will and do, of his

own Pleasure. VAB F People will not be persuaded Serm.

A to interpret Scripture by Scrip- IV. one orta ture, but make it bend to their e preconceived Opinions, it is no

Wonder, that they deviate always as widely from the Truth, as they differ often from one another. We see the ill Effects of these Prejudices no where more temarkably, than in the contradictory Sentiments, which are entertained of the respective Parts born by God and Man in the grand Concern of Salvation.


IV. SOME there are, who, convinced from the

express Declarations, in holy Writ; that if
they will enter into Life, they must keep the
Commandments (a), and perhaps influenced by
other leading Errors, being full of their
own Strength, and fancying themselves all-
sufficient, have strenuously pleaded for the
general Acceptation of the Word Grace,
whilst they have overlooked the precise and
special one,---have shut the Holy Spirit
quite out from having any Hand in their
Obedience, and allowing God only the Glo-
ry of discovering his Will to Men, have
advanced their natural Faculties into a Ca-
pacity of acceptably performing it.

Others, again, finding it to be also clearly revealed in the same Scriptures, that Christ Jesus is not only the Author, but the Finisher of Man's Salvation, and being prepoffeffed with à Nộtion of absolute Election and God's unconditional Decrees, have magnified 'Grace to the utter Disparagement of Works. Nor is it uncommon with fuch Persons, on the Commission of any Sin, to imputę their Fall to the Defect of Grace, and not to any Fault in themselves.

But {a) St. Matth. xix. 17,


But is not this to charge God rather pro- SERM. fånely-than foolishly, and to insinuate, that IV. there was nothing wanting to have preserved their Innocence, besides the irresistible Influence of his Holy Spirit, which, they imagine, he is bound: to afford them? And this Way of thinking is observable, not in the loose and profligate alone, who would excuse themselves by accusing God; but the Notion is likewise maintained and propagated even by those, who affect the Appearance of great Sanctity, and would be esteemed to have more Religion than their Neighbours.

Yet such Persons, however pious they may seem, have certainly not attained to à right Understanding in divine Matters, as the Truth is in Jesus. Whilst they have opposed, and that very justly, the gross and fatal Mistakes of such, as altogether reject the Doctrine of sanctifying Grace, and suppose Man to be left in the Hand of his own Counsel, without any Guidance or Help from his Maker, they have not been fufficiently on their Guard themselves ---have incautiously run off into the contrary Extreme, and peremptorily asserted, that Man, far from being able to obey God's


SERM. Commandments by his own Strength, can-
IV. not make the least Advance towards it, and

only proceed in religious Affairs, as he is
acted upon.

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But neither of these Opinions receive any Warrant from the plain Scope and Tenour of God's Purpose concerning us in the Gospel of his Son. Such is our wretched Condition by Nature (which, if we are so blind as not to see it of ourselves, God difcovers to us by the Light of Revelation) that exclusive of his Help we can do nothing towards our Recovery out of this State of Sin and Misery. As we must be taught our Duty by his Word, so must we be supported in the Performance of it by his mighty Aid; his Concurrence with us both to prevent and assist us, is absolutely necessary : And what is so needful for us, to enable us to walk before him unto all wellpleasing, is not with-held from those, who are qualified, as all may be to receive it. His Grace is sufficient for us.----God worketh in us to will and to do;---what Help is requisite, we are promised and shall obtain, in order to work out our Salvation. God is never backward in his Part; and if we will not do ours in a Matter of so much


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