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thren, by the mercies are now capable of Pardon and A. D. 57. of God, that ye pre- Happiness, upon the Terms of sent your bodies a liv- Faith in Chrift, and Obedience ing sacrifice, holy, ac
to the Gospel; let me now intreat ceptable unto God, whicb is your reasona- of God in this Covenant, or ex
you all, as you value the Mercies ble service.
pect any Benefit by it, to endeavour after the Practice of all its moral and reafonable Duties, viz. the fubduing your finful Lusts and irreguJar Appetites ; a Sacrifice much better, and more acceptable to God, than that of Nain Beasts, and legal Oblations.
2. And be not con- 2. Forsaking and renouncing formed to this world; all the wicked Customs and Fashibut be ye transformed ons of the World, by a Change by the renewing of of your Sentiments and Principles your mind, that ye from what they formerly were, may prove what is that good, and acby being fully satisfied *
yourceptable, and perfeä selves
, and by your Practices
de will of God. monstrating to all others, how
truly good and excellent your Christian Duties and Services are.
3. For I say, thro 3. And whereas several, both the grace given unto of Jewish and Gentile Converts, me, to every man that
are now, as Christian Professors, is among you, not to bleft with extraordinary Gifts and think of himself more Endowments of the Holy Ghost, to think, but to think I as an inspired Apoftle, do now soberly, according as forewarn and exhort such of
you, God hath deali to neither to extol and magnify any every man the mea- such Gifts beyond what they realSure of faith.
ly are, nor to exalt themselves
into a Contempt of other Chriftia ans upon Account of them. But let every one look upon a spiritual Gift, as a Trust and a Chargé committed to his Care and Fidelity.
4. For as we have 44. For as in the human Body, many members in one though some Members may be of
* Ver. 2. 'Ess To Soxsuá sly, That ye may approve, i. e. either judge and fully difcern within your selves; or prove and recommend to orbers,
A. D. 57. body, and all mem- more apparent and visible Use ubers have not the same than others, some stronger, 0*See 1 Cor. office :
thers more feeble, some more hoxii. &c. nourable, others less; yet all have their proper and new
ceffary Functions for the Good of the whole Frame:
5. So we being ma- 5. Even so in the Christian ny are one body in Church, while some spiritual Gifts Christ, and every one may be more eminent and remembers one of ano. markable than others; yet all Dether.
grees of them, even the meaneft, have their excellent Uses and Purposes; all gifted Perfons are some Way needful Members of this Body of Christ, and none ought to be despised.
6. Having then gifts, 6. As therefore God has diftridiffering according to buted these extraordinary Endowthe grace that is given ments according to his own good to us, whether pro- Pleasure, and your Offices and phesy, let us propbesy Posts in the Church are of dif+ according to the ferent kinds, let every one exerproportion of faith :
cise his own prudently, and modestly, and to the best Advantage. He that has the Gift of Prophecy, for Instance, i. e. either of interpreting Scripture by Inspiration, or of foretelling future Things, let him interpret or foretel no further f than the Spirit clearly and plainly directs him, and let him do it with the Diligence and Faithfulness that such a Trust requires. 7. Or ministry, let 7. He that hath any Office une. wait on our mi- der anty chief Minister in the niftring;
+ Ver. 6. Kaldayanyiar tñs aiseas, According to the Proportion of Faith, i. e. So far as he has the Gist of Inspi.. ration, which was bestowed upon Men in Proportion to the Progress they had made in the Christian Faith. Or elle chus: Let him interpret and foretel nothing but what is agreeable to the Rule of Christian Faith and Doctrine, There is yet another Sense of the Word Faith, in this and in many other Passages; it is that of the judicious Dr. Clark, According to the Proportion of Faith, i.e. “ According to the Nature and « Use of the Gift, or Power, or Truit, committed to a. “ Man's Charge or Fidelity.' So in Ver. 3. Serm. Vol. II. pag. 267.
niftring; or he that Church, let him attend that: He A. D. 57. teacheth, on teach- that is to teach others the Chrising:
tian Faith, to qualify them for Baptism, let that be his Business.
8. Or he that ex- 8. Whoever is endowed with horteth, on exhorta- a peculiar Talent of exhorting, tion : he that giveth, comforting, and supporting olet him do it with sim. thers in their Profession, let him plicity ; he that ruleth, mind that good Work. Whowith diligence ; he
ever is either disposed to an extrathat sheweth mercy, ordinary A&t of Charity, or is a with cheerfulness.
Distributer and Steward of charitable Collections, let him do it without any private Ends, or finister Designs. Such as preside over others in any Capacity, let them govern with Diligence. He whose Office it is to minister to the Sick, the Widow, or the Stranger, let him do it heartily and chearfully*.
9. Let love be with- 9. Let all your Expressions of out diffimulation. Ab- mutual Love and Kindness be finhor that which is e
cere and unfeigned, without Flatvil, cleave to that tery and Compliment, scorning which is good.
to do a base and t injurious Turn to any Man, but always ready and desirous to do what is kind and good.
10. Be kindly af. 10. Love one another, not only fectioned one to ano- out of a Principle of common ther, with brotherly Humanity, but as Christian Brelove, in honour pre- thren and Relations, being ready ferring one another :
to give every one the Preheminence, rather than depress or undervalue any.
11. Not slothful in 11. Be no Way flothful in your business: fervent in Duty to God or Man, but zealspirit': ferving the ous and earnest in every PerLord :
formance your Station requires, as confidering it is the honourable Service of your God and Saviour.
• Cor. xiii. 2. Jam. v. 15. 1 Pet. iv. 11. Ephef. iv. 7.
† To roynegy, A malicions Turn, tot dyadi, a kind Action. The Context being about Love and Charity seems to require this Sense.
A. D. 57
12. Rejoycing in 12. Let the Hopes of Heaven hope ; patient in tri- and eternal Happiness fill your bulation ; continuing Minds with a constant Joy and inftant in prayer: Satisfaction. Be patient and resolute under all Sufferings, for the Sake of Christ and his Religion, praying with Earnestness, Constancy, and Submission to the divine Will, for a timely Deliverance from them.
13. Distributing to 13. Give all the Affiftance you the necessity of saints; can to such Fellow-Christians as given to hospitality. are under Persecution and Diftress, and entertain such as come to you either as Preachers of the Gospel, or as Exiles for the Faith of it. 14. Bless them which
14. With well to them that persecute you: bless, injure you, and pray for their and curse not : Conversion : Let no Abuses whatever provoke you to ill Wilhes, or angry Imprecations. 15. Rejoyce with
15. Have such a Concern and them that do rejoyce, Fellow-feeling in the Condition and weep with them of all Christian People, as to re
joice with them in their Prosperity, and condole with them in Adversity.
16. Be of the same 16. Endeavour after an even, mind one towards a- condescending, and unanimous nother. Mind not Disposition to one another. Let high things, but con. not Prosperity set you above a descend to men of Concern for your Inferiors, nor low estate. Be not
any spiritual Endowments make wise in your own conceits.
you proud of your own Wisdom
and Abilities. 17. Recompense to 17 & 18. Remember no Sort no man evil for evil
. of Injuries so far as to revenge Provide things honeft them. Do every Thing To prus in the fight of all dently, as to give no Occafion or
Pretence of Objection or Scanble, as much as lieth dal; endeavouring to gain the live peacea.
good Opinion of all Sorts of bly with all men.
Men, by all Methods that are
consistent with Duty, Honour, and Conscience.
19. Dearly beloved,
19. I beseech you, my dear A. D. 57: avenge not yourselves, Brethren, especially to seek no but rather give place Revenge upon your Persecutors, onto wrath : for it is but leave your Cause to God, who written, Vengeance is has claim'd the Prerogative of mine; I will repay, inflicting Vengeance to himself, faith the Lord,
and has promised to do it, Deut.
you should your
20. Therefore if 20. Wherefore if
help him ; for by so doing, you
such generous Behaviour toward
him, or else heap the Coals of divine Vengeance upon his Head, for such brutish Malice, and incurable Ingratitude.
21. Be not over- 21. Let no ill Usage get such come of evil, but o
a Mastery over you, as to break vercome evil
your Temper, and draw you ingood.
to passionate Desires of Revenge; but by returning Good for Evil, obtain the noble Victory over both yourselves and your Enemies.
C H A P.
• Ver. 20. Heap Coals of Fire upon his Head. Note, I have given the two most usual Senses ascribed to this Phrase. But it must be confessed, the latter of them is moft agreeable to the Expresfion, as used in other Passages of Scripture. As in Psal. xi. 6. xviii. 8, 13. cxx. 4. cxl. 11.