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are written that ye might believe that Jesus is the Chru, the Son of God, and that believing ye might hakk through his name. John xx, 21.
Hereby OUR JUSTIFICATION IS CONFIRMED. I is true that we are justified freely by the grace of G through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus. Rea iii, 24. But how do I receive the blessing? by fait. What is the warrant of that faith? the word of God How are we to obtain that faith? by hearing. Hor is that faith proved to be genuine? by its conformia: the soul to the word, and producing corresponding fruits in the life. My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me. John x, 27. When we beat Christ's roice and follow him, then we may be sure that he knows us, and we are his sheep, and among his justified people. Whom he called, them he also justified. Rom. viii, 30.
Hereby OUR ADOPTION IS CERTIFIED. God give: to his people the spirit of adoption; the power (egovorim, the right or privilege, to become the sons of God. Joha 1 12. This is given to those that believe on the name dites Son. When Christ is preached, and I hear, and, krough the Holy Spirit, accept the offer of mercy in Carist, I become a child of God, and am reckoned in
i family of which it is said, As many as are led by the Vreme God, they are the sons of God. For
hare De revived the spirit of bondage, again to fear; but ye there wound the spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Dudy Father. The Spirit itself beareih witness with Miley" pad, that we are the children of God, and if mi*tirn heirs, heirs of God, and joint heirs with live in. viii, 14-17. By nature meu are the serbetes and it and under its tyrannical bondage; but the cum the truth breaks the chains and admit
em to the glorious liberty of the children of God.
viii, 21. Our Lords says, ye shall know the truth, id the truth shall make you free. Jobn viii, 32. Who in tell the blessedness of looking up to God with filial, onfidence and love as our Father? Surely, no tongue an express the delightful bliss of seeing the love of a leavenly Parent in our own paternal feelings, aud liscovering in our care and tenderriess towards our chil
iren, day by day, fresh traces and emblems of his parental care, and love, and tenderness towards us his children, elevating the beart to him, and filling it with joy and gladness. Owhat fulness of joy is it to have such a father, so wise and so mighty, so rich and so
bountiful, so kind and so tender, so holy and so 12* unspeakably excellent, our reconciled Father in Jesus 123 Christ!
Hereby OUR ELECTION charged, Give diligence to make your calling and election
sure. 2 Pet. i, 10. By diligently attending the meaus sport, of grace, we obtain divine strength enabling us to be
holy and to glorify God, and thus have a sweet assurance given that we are chosen in Christ. Eph.i, 4. And what love is here! that God should, from his own good pleasure, before time begao, have planned salvation, and purposed, to the glory of his owo grace and the praise of his name, to save us from sin, make us holy, and bring us to his kingdom: I say, this is such a display of divine mercy and love, as, if once reasonably made out from the word of God and the work of his Spirit on the heart, cannot but fill us with love, and gratitude, and assured hope, and the most joyful anticipations of future glory, and deeply humble our souls in the conviction that all we are and have is of sovereign grace and love. Latimer says, " Whosoever heareth
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the word of God and followeth it, the same is elect him. And again, whosoever refuseth to hear the wa of God and follow the same, is damned. So that election is sure if we follow the word of God."*
Hereby GOD CARRIES ON OUR SANCTIFICATION All Christian graces are nourished and strengthened by a due regard to Christ's word. We have seen, tka: regeneration and faith are thus given, and all holiness is thus advanced in us. Our Lord Father for his disciples-Sanctify them through the truth; thy word is truth. John xvii, 17. They wts are most eminent for holiness, are among those who are at the same time the most constant and diligent attending the ministry of the Gospel. Christian reader! we appeal to you, how often has your heart, when dull and lifeless, hereby been stirred up and quickened! How often have holy resolutions been thus first excited in your mind! How certainly all your religion would, humanly speaking, have died, had it not been for the afresh-quickening and new-reviving power of the Gospel It is called, and it is found to be a savour of life unie life. Every sinful disposition and affection is checked and curbed, every holy and heavenly desire and feeling is nourished and strengthened, while we are humbly waiting for divine instruction in the way of God's appointment. The manifestation of the Spirit (whether it be the word of wisdom, or the word of knowledge, or any other gift) is given to every man to profit withal, (1 Cor. xii, 7, 8.) both for himself and for others. Every part of the word is designed for our good; let none, then, of the precious seed be lost.
prays to his
* See Latimer's Sermons, vol. ii, p. 425.
THE SPIRITUAL COMFORT OF THE BELIEVER
MAINTAINED AND ADVANCED. The Gospel is e dispensation of the Holy Ghost, the Comforter. It good tidings of great joy. The office of ministers to comfort the people of Christ, as well as to awaken ne careless. And O what full and abounding comfort
nere is to the tried, afflicted, and burdened Christian ist in the rich promises of a free pardon, a full and gratuiNous justification by Christ, the gift of the Holy Ghost,
and the new covenant well ordered in all things and sure!
Christian reader! have you never gone to the house of 1. der God weary, disquieted, and sorrowful, and there heard 1:20. Ni a word in season, and returned calm, and peaceful, and Berichte happy? Have you never there experienced some of de lime the cheering consolations which flow from the divine love y he will shed abroad in the heart by the Holy Spirit, and the scored s blessedness and excellence of that peace of God which tions be a passeth all understanding? This has been the happy experience of the servants of God. David
Blessed is the people that know the joyful sound; they shall walk, O Lord, in the light of thy countenance. To taste the love of Christ to us, "and to feel emotions of strongest love to Him, this is heaven begun below. 0 how the hearts of the bearers of the Lord must have been comforted when he asked the question, Who is my father, and who are my brethren? and he stretched forth his hand toward his disciples, and said, Behold my mother, and my brethren! And he said unto them, My mother and brethren are these which hear the word of God and do it. The very assurance that in duly regarding that word we are fulfilling a plain duty, and attending to our highest interest, may well comfort us; and the doctrines of the Gospel truly received are an unfailing spring of happiness.
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Our souLS ARE RIPENING FOR THE GLORY TO COME. Not merely temporal benefits, but a prepars. tion for eternal, is connected with a due regard e Christ's word. Our Lord asserts, He that heareth words, and believeth in me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation, but is passed from death to life. This is the road in which the saints that now fill the heavenly mansions once walked on earth. They heard, and listened to, and loved the truth of God. They tasted its sweetness, they experienced its power, they lived under its influence. ' St. Peter savs, Desire the sincere milk of the word, that ye may grow thereby * unto salvation. 1 Pet. ii, 2. Would you attair the glory above ? tread in the steps of saints below, and thus be followers of them who through faith and patience inherit the promises. Reader! it is true excellence, and the way to true glory, to discern the vanity of all knowledge separate from that which makes wise unto salvation, and to yield and submit ourselves wholly to the guidance of divine truth. Those saved by the Gospel are freely pardoned, justitied, and accepted of God, sanctified by his Holy Spirit, and made meet to be partakers of the heavenly inheritance. They are adopted into the family of their divine Parent, made heirs of God, and joint heirs with Jesus Christ. To be delivered from the wrath of God, the power of Satan, and the misery of hell; to be changed, renewed, and purified by the Holy Ghost; to be translated into the kingdom of God's dear Son ; and even now to have the sure hope of everlasting life-these are some foretastes
• The best manuscripts add, eis swingrar. See Griesbach and