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quently intructed concerning the Mef-
fiah,
1. Because their mafter being now in

prison, they might apprehend, if
Jesus had been the Meffiah, he would
have exerted his power to deliver
hin.

23 2. They might have observed, that our

Saviour had not himself hitherto af

ferted his right to that title. 24 3. Their fufpicions might be increased

by observing, that our Saviour's life had less appearance of outward fanctity in it, than their master's.

24 II. In the reply, the manner of it remark.

able, because it gave the disciples an occafion of answering that question themselves, which they had proposed to our blessed Saviour.

25 The matter of it remarkable, 1. For the gradation of its particulars,

the last of which was an in instance of condescension the Jews had before

been but little acquainted with. 2. For the appositeness of it in relati

on to the persons that made the en

quiry: For, Firs, Since they were not to be convinc

ed by oral testimony, they are taught VOL. III.

b

28

to judge of the Mefliah by the works they saw in him.

27 Secondly, Miracles were a proof of our Sa

viour's pre-eminence over their master, and were known to be one discriminat

ing mark of his being the Messiah. 27 Thirdly, The particular facts our Saviour

mentions, all of them acts of benevolence, were rightly suited to insinuate that pre-eminence, and to correct those ill notions the disciples might have conceived from their master's rigid auste

rities. Fourthly, The answer is expressed in words

taken from the prophet Isaiah, whose writings had more particularly point ed out their own master, and in which consequently they had been most conversant.

29 The passage in the text is remarkable for

its containing the chief marks and characters of such miracles as are sufficient to confirm the authority of any person pretending to be sent from God.

37 And exhortation to attention in perusing

the several parts of scripture, which, like the words of nature always appear the more wonderful, the more they are looked into.

33 SER

SERMON III.

On the Incarnation of our Lord.

MATTH. xi. 6. Blefjed is be, whofaever shall not be offended in

me..

Notwithstanding the endearing marks of

our Saviour's love to mankind, his doctrine, his mysteries, or his person, have to some been always matter of offence.

37 The objections against the incarnation,

drawn from the impoffibility or the unreasonableness of it, stated.

38 1. We know too little of the human or

divine nature to prove an union of them impossible.

38 We can as little explain or comprehend an

union of souls and bodies, as we can that of the deity with humanity.

39 And if the spirits of men had been once

unbodied, and such a doctrine revealed to them in a state of separation, it would have appeared to some forward reasoners as unphilosophical and absurd,

40 b 2

II. The

II. The method, which infinite goodness

and wisdom has made use of for our redemption, we must needs think the most proper of any,

41 Reasons which scripture suggests to us, why our redeemer ihould be God.

42 And why he should be man.

42 Practical improvements from this doctrine 1. Thankfulness, that we are admitted,

, to terms of repentance, which before

we could have no assurance of. 43 2. Love for our Saviour's infinite condefcenfion.

44 The force of this motive strangely weakened by those, who make him a mere man.

45 3. A high fenfe of the dignity of our na.

ture, and a hearty diiplealure at thofe fins that debase and dishonour it.

45 4. A spirit of universal humility. Ś. A fedulous care to trace all the steps

of that example our Saviour fet us in the fleth, which that he might fet ús, was one great end of his taking our nature upon

him. 6. A due efteem for that everlasting gof

pel which Chrift sealed with his blood; and as the best expression of our ef

46.

48

teem

I

teem for it, a strict compliance with the terms of it.

SERMON TV.
Temptations not irresistible.

ICOR. X. 13. God is faithful, wbp will not suffer you to be

tempted above that ye are able, but will with the temptation also make a way

to escape. The common plea with Libertines, that

human Nature is too weak to refift temptations.

54 I. Untier what restrictions the truth of the

tèxt, to be underttood. II. This maxim when duly stated, con

firmed, k. From experience, and the examples of

several holy men recorded in scripture

hiftory. 2. From some general reafonings drawn

from the nature of temptations themselves; of that gospel grace, which is to support us under them ; of man, a free agent; and of God, who is a

holy,

56

59, 60

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