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Lest any of you be hardened through deceitfulness of sin.
Heb. iii. 13.
Doth sin present itself? turn away from it with loathing and prayer.
Give it not a look, lest it ensnare thee. If thou committest sin, and diest without repentance, thy soul is lost, and thy redemption ceaseth for ever; or if thou committest sin and dost repent, yet expect chidings of God's face, and breaking of bones, as David felt to his cost. Oh! what bitter pangs ! what painful throes ! what shadows of death! what terrors of Hell may seize upon thee, before thou canst make thy peace, or settle thine assurance ! Wilt thou give way to sin, because it is de lightful, or because it is pardonable? Who loves poison because it is sweet? or who drinks poison because he may have an antidote ? seeing it will work to his trouble, if it work not out his life! I have a precious soul, shall I lose it for a lust? I have a gracious God, shall I venture him for a sin? No, Lord, give me grace to resist sin, give me victory over it. Let me always reject that, for the indulgence of which I am sure to lose my peace, and endanger the loss of my immortal soul !
A tender conscience give me, Lord,
And put thy fear within ;
That I may tremble at thy word,
And 'scape the snares of sin.
This is he that came by water and blood, even Jesus Christ ; not by wa
ter only, but by wuter and blood ; and it is the Spirit thut beareth witness, because the Spirit is truth. He that believeth on the Son of God, hath the witness in himself : and this is the record, That God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. He that hath
the Son, hath life. 1 John v. 6, 10-12. Jesus came with water and blood; not with water alone, to sanctify us,
but also with his blood to make atonement for our sins. We should therefore, first of all, penitently seek and obtain remission of sins in his blood ; then may we hope to obtain the water of life, the Holy Ghost, for our inward purification and sanctification. And his holy Spirit will bear witness within us, that the Gospel is truth, and that God will fulfil his word, by giving us everlasting life, as he hath promised. We have three witnesses of it in Heaven, and three on Earth. And if we believe in Christ, we have this true testimony in ourselves; and may therefore assuredly know, that, “ having the Son of God, we have life, eternal life ; for he is,' according to yer. 20,“ life eternal ;” and consequently, being in Him, we are already entered into everlasting life. Let all our tongues be one
By water we are purify'd,
And pardon’d by the blood.
It cost him cries and tears
To bring us near to God!
Great was our debt, and he appears Pour'd out a double dood;
To make our payment good.
And no man hath ascended up to Heaven but he that came down from · Headen, even the Son of Man, which is in Heaven. John iii. 13.
No mere man whatsoever has entered, or can enter, into the secrets of I God's heart in Heaven, relating to the great mysteries of salyation, so as immediately and perfectly to understand them, and make them known to others; but this privilege is peculiar to the Messiah, who is spoken of under the character of “ The Son of Man," Psal. Ixxx. 17, and Dan. vii. 13, and always had an existence in Heaven as the Son of God; and who came from thence into an incarnate state, that he might reveal God's counsels to men, As many are perplexed about the divinity of Christ, the following note may help them to conceive of that matter more properly: As the divine and human natures were united in the person of Christ, some things are attributed to one nature, which properly belong to the other. Thus, when it is said, 1 Cor. ii 8, “ The Lord of glory was crucified ;" and Acts xx. 28, he is called “God, who purchased the church with his own blood;" the meaning is not, that he, as the Lord of glory, was crucified; or, as God, shed his blood; as if the divine nature could be crucified and bleed; but that the person, who was the Lord of glory in one nature, was crucified in the other, &c, So when it is said “The Son of man is in Heaven;" the meaning is not, that he, as the Son of man, was there whilst he was on the earth; but that he, who was here in his human nature, was there in his divine.
When ye pray, say, “Our Father," &c. Luke xi. 2. Ye ask and re.
ceive not, because ye ask amiss. James iv. 3. M ANY say the Lord's Prayer who do not pray it; they (like Austin, before
V his conversion, when he prayed for chastity) are afraid, lest God should hear them; they do not care that God should say Amen, or So be it, though they themselves will say so. They say, “ Our Father;" but if he be their Father, where is his honour? They say,“ which art in Heaven;" but did they believe it, how durst they sin as they do upon earth? They say, “Hallowed be thy name;" yet take God's name in vain. They say, “ Thy kingdom come;" yet oppose the coming of his kingdom. They say, “Thy will be done on Earth as it is in Heaven;" yet will not stand to their words, for this is the will of God, their sanctification;" but they want none of that, They say, “ Give us this day our daily bread;" yet miid not the feeding of their souls with “ the bread (Christ Jesus) which came down from Heaven." They say, “Forgive us as we forgive others;" but alas! if God should take them at their word, how undone were they, whose hearts burn with malice and revenge. They say, “ Lead us not into temptation ;" yet run into it, and tempt Satan himself to tempt them. They say, “ Deliver us from 6 evil;" and yet deliver themselves to evil, and give up themselves" to fulfil the lust of the flesh,” &e. Yea, it hath been observed, that they sin most against this prayer who stickle most for the saying of it. Reader, How often hast thou been guilty of such vain petitions and repetitions ? Wonder not, if thou prayest in such a manner as this, that thou receivest nothing. Labour to get a deep sense of the Majesty of God, and of his mercy, upon thy mind, that thy prayers may be fervent and earnest, and God will bless thee.
Assist and teach me how to pray; | What thou abhorrest let me flee,
| And only love what pleases thee.
Jesus Christ the same yesterday, to-day, and for ever. Heb. xiii. 8.
Who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sancti. fication; that, as it is written, he that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord. 1 Cor. i. 30, 31. He has finished the transgression, he has mude reconciliation for iniquity, he hus brought in everlasting righteousness. Dan. ix. 24. In him have we righteousness and strength. Isaiah xlv. 24.
In ourselves we find nothing but misery; in Christ all that is good ;
nay, he is himself our All; he'works and gives what is necessary to salvation, therefore we cannot, and need not bring any thing to him of our own ; but since he is made unto us wisdom, righteousness, sanetification, and our all, we may, and must rely only on his name, and draw every thing from him by the continual prayer of faith. And when by living faith in Christ he becomes our All, the law, sin, Satan, and even our own judgments, have lost their power and right of con. demnation over us. Jehovah speaks, let Israel hear; | There's none beside pretends to show Let all the earth rejoice and fear,
Such justice and salvation too.
Lies all their strength and righteousness; I am the last, and I the first,
But such as dare despise my name, The Saviour-God, and God the just, I'll clothe them with eternal shame.