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38

ter.

though he that does not, does better.

:291 let him seek out a proper Partner in Life for her, Sect. 14. 39 Nevertheless, he that and let them marry.

But be that hath hitherto, landeth stedfaft in his

Heart
, stood ftedfast in bis Heart, having also on her Side 1 Cor. VII.

37. hath Power over his own no Apprehension of any Neceffity, in Consequence Will, and hath so decreed of what he discerns of her Dispositions, and keep his Virgin, doeth well

. no Engagement fubfisting, which might give ano

ther a juft Claim to her, but båtb.Power over his
own Will, being at Liberty to act as he pleases ;
and bath in such circumstances determined in his
own Heart, that ke will keep bis Maiden still fin-
gle; he does well, and the Part he acts is so far

from being blameable, that in present Circum-
38 So then, he that giv- ftances it is much to be commended. So that
eth her in Marriage, doeth
well : But he that giveth her on the whole, the Conclusion of the Matter is
not in Marriage, doeth bet- this : He, that in such troublous Times as these
gives [her] in Marriage doth well; the

may

find Opportunities in that Relation both to adorn and to serve Christianity; but as Things are circumstanced, I must needs declare, that where a Man is under no Necessity of doing it, he that gives [her] not in Marriage, doth better, and more ef

fectually consults both his Comfort and Safety.
39 The Wife is bound This' however is beyond Controversy certain, 39
by the Law as long as her that the Wife is bound by the Law, to continue
Husband be dead, the is at with her Hufband, and submit herself to him,
Liberty to be married to as long as her Husband livetb; but if her Husband
whom sie will ; only in the be dead, she is in that Case free, and may, marry
Lord.

to whom she will; only let her take Care, that the
marry in the Lord, and that retaining a Sense of
the Importance of her Christian Obligations, she

does not choose a Partner for a Life of a different 40 But she is happier, if Religion from herself. She

may, I say, lawment : And I think also that advise it; for she is happier according to my SentiThe fo abide, after my Judg- fully act thus; but I would not be understood to I have the Spirit of God.

ment, if he continue as she is : And I
destly say, that I appear to have the Spirit of
GOD (1) to guide me; and not merely some

Degree
7!) 1 appear to have the Spirit of GOD.) 'Tis very unreasonable for any to infer fron
hence, that St. Paul was uncertain, whether he was inspired, or not. Whereas this is
only a modeft Way of speaking; and Soxwixsin, often signifies the same with exw. Com-
pare Luke viii. 18. with Mat. xiii. 12., 1 Cor. x. 1, 2. Chap. xiv. 37. And the Ambi-
guity in the Expreffion, appear to have, feems exactly to correspond to the
original Phrase.

40

may mo

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e; Ambiguity of this

292

Reflections on our. Indifference to fecular. Concerns. Sect. 14. Degree of Experience, arising from the many

Observations which for a Course of Years I have 1 Cor. VII. made on human Affairs. I may therefore reason

ably suppose, my Judgment will have its pecu-
liar Weight, even where I do not pretend to de-
cide with such an Authority, as should bind the
Conscience, as by an Apostolical Dictate.

40.

1 M P R O V E M E N T.

Ver. 25.

L

Ver.29

Ver. 30 Ver. 31.

Ver. 32

one

ET us observe the Humility of the excellent Apostle with Plealure.

When he speaks of his Fidelity in the Ministry, he tells us, be obtained Mercy of the Lord to be faithful. Edified by such an Example, let'us ascribe to Christ the Praise, not only of our -Endowments, but our Virtues ; even to him, who worketb in us, both. to will, and to do, of his own good Pleasure.

Let us seriously contemplate the affecting Leffon, which the Apostle here gives, of the Shortness of Time; and infer, how much it is our Wisdom, to loosen our Affections from the Things of this vain World, which are ready to engross fo disproportionate a Share in them. Let us look

upon the World as a transient Pageant, and not set our Eyes, and our Hearts, on that which is not. We expect, instead of these transitory Vanities and empty Shews, a Kingdom tbat cannot be moved; in the Expectation of which, let us be solicitous to please the Lord; making the best of our Opportunities, and guarding against all that may unnecessarily divert our Minds, and divide our Cares, from what will at Length appear tibe Thing needful.

Let us attentively reflect upon the Advantages, and Snares, of our refpective Conditions in Life; that we may improve the one, and escape as far as possible, all. Injury from the other. "Let those who are single, employ their Leisure for God; and endeavour to collect a Stock of Calorif tion Experience, which may support them, when the Duties and Diffi

culties, the Cares and Sorrows of Life, may be multiplied. Let those, Ver. 33, 34. who are married, with mutual tender Regard endeavour to please each

other, and make the Relation into which providence hath conducted 'them, as comfortable and agreeable as they can. And whatever Cares press upon their Minds, or demand their Attention, let them order their Affairs with such Direction, that they may still secure a due proportion

of their Time for the Things of the Lord. Ver. 355-38. If any in their Consciences are persuaded, that by continuing single

thcy:shall best answer the Purposes of Religion, and promote the Good of their Fellow-creatures, in Conjunction with their own; lét them do it.

293

St. Paul.treats of their eating Things offered to Idols: As for those that marry, whether a first, or a second Time, let them do Sect. 14. it in the Lord : Acting in the Chcice of their most intimate Friend and Companion, as the Servants of Chrift; who are desirous that their Con- Ver. 39. duct may be approved by him, and that any Avocations and Interruptions in his Service, which may be occasioned, even in those peaceful Times, by Marriage, may be, in some Measure, balanced, by the united Prayers, prudent Counsels, and edifying Converse of those, with whom they unite in this tender and indissoluble Bond.

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The Apostle proceeds to confider the Case of eating Things fa

crificed to Idols ; and reminds them, that tho all Chriftians might well be supposed to know the Vanity of those imaginary Deities, to which they were offered, yet it might prove än Occasion of Grief and Scandal, that the Profesors of Christianity faould partake of these Sacrifices in their Temple; which therefore Charity would require them by all Means to avoid. I Cor. VIII, throughout.

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I

1.

CORINTHIANS VIII. I.

i CORINTHIANS VIII. I, OW: as touching

Noie proceed to consider the other Cases, Sect. 15. Things offered unto Idols, we know that we all about which you consulted me; particularly have Knowledge. Know- that concerning Things sacrificed to idols: And 1 Cor. VIII, ledge puffeth up, but Cha- here it may be observed, that we know, we all rity edifieth.

have, as Christians, that general Knowledge of
the Vanity of thele fictitious Deities, of which
some are ready to boast, as if it were an extraor-
dinary Matter, and which they sometimes are in
Danger of abusing, by making it the Foundation
of Liberties, which may be very detrimental.
But let it be remembered, that Knowledge often
puffetk up (á), and is the Occasion of great Self-

Conceit

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::.:(). Knowledge i puffith up.] Eyner, (Obsery. Vol.ii. pag. 96.) acknowledges that, as Bos, and Erasmus Schmidius, contend, there is a Parenthesis here'; but he thinks it begins in the

Middle

2.

294 He: obferves, that tho-they knew an Idol was nothing, Sect. 15. Conceit and Arrogance : Whereas it is considerate

Love, and gentle Tenderness, that edifies, and has 1 Cor . VIII. such a happy Effect in building up the Church of Christ.

2 And if any Man think And indeed, if any one think that

that he knoweth any Thing, he knoweth any Thing, if he be conceited of his: he knoweth nothing jets Knowledge, so as to neglect and despise his Bre- he ought to know. thren, and upon Account of his supposed Superiority in that Respect, set a very high Value

upon himself, it appears, that be as yet knows nothing as be ought to know it, and needs to be taught the very first and most effential Principles of that

Knowledge which is truly ornamental and useful.
3 But if any Man love GOD, and thew it by a 3 But if any Man love

steady Regard for the Divine Glory, and the God, the same is known of
Good of his Brethren, be is indeed known of
him (6): This Man hath attained the true Know-

ledge of God, and will be sure of his Approba-
4 tion and Favour. Therefore, to proceed to the 4 As concerning there-

Question in Debate, concerning the eating of the fore the eating of those
Things facrificed to Idols

We well know that an Sacrifice unto Idols, we
Idol (is) in itself nothing in the World (c), but a know that an Idol is no-
Mass of senseless Matter, and when regarded in thirig, in the World, and
a religious View, so empty a Vanity, that it de- that there is none other Gon
serves not to be named among the Things that
exist. And we all know that [there is] indeed
no cóber GOD, but that one glorious and trans-

cendent Being, to which the Gospel hath taught 5 us to appropriate our Worship. For thotbere 5 For though there Be

are many which are called Gods, whether residing that are called Gods, whein Heaven, or on Earth, or even under the Earth;

fas for

but one.

Middle of the first Verse, and ends after the first Clause of the 4th, we have all Knowledge, -we know that an Idol is nothing, &c.

(6) He is known of him.] Moft understand it, he is approved by GOD; as to know, fometimes undoubtedly signifies. Mr. Locke would render it, he is instructed by him. But I acquiesce in Mr. Pierce's Reasoning, in his 6th Dissertation, to prove the Construction followed in the Paraphrasc, by a Construction like that of the Original of iets x. 36. where zlos plainly refers to the immediate Antecedent.

We know that an Idol is nothing in the World.) Dr. Wbitby shews this was a common Aphorisin among the Jewish Doctors; to which the Word Dogs, the Name given them, did probably allude. Mons. Saurin thinks it so hard to reconcile this with what the Apostle says elsewhere, that he judges it necessary to understand this, as an Objection made by one of the Corinthians, with whom he is disputing. Saur. Disc. Vol. ii. pag. 476,-481. But I cannot, from an impartial View of the Context, give into his Interpretation. See Elfner's learned Note here on eidwdor, and Simulachrum.

(d) One

5.

great tho

get the Consciences of weak Brethren might be defiled by eating. 295 fas there be Gods many, for the Heathens have not only their celestial, and Sect. 15. and Lords many) terrestrial, but likewise their infernal Deities : As

1 Cor. VIII.
there are many Gods, and many Lords, who are,
in their various Subordination, adored by the
Gentiles, and have

'
very

absurd Wor6 But to us there is biet thip paid to them : Nevertheless, to us, [there one God, the Father, of is but] one GOD, the Father (d) of Angels and. we in him, and one Lord Men, from whom [are) all Things in created NaJesus Chrift, by whom are ture; and we derived our Being from him, were sr Things, and we by him. made for him, and for his Glory : And there is

also but one Lord, even Jesus Christ, the only
Mediator betwen God and Man, by whom [are]
all Things. created, supported, and guided ; and
we by him, thankfully owning ourselves obliged to
his Agency and Care for all we are, and have,
or hope to obtain. These are grand Principles,
in which all intelligent Christians are agreed;
and it would be happy, if they kept them stea-

dily and consistently in View. 7 Howbeit, there is not

You are possessed of these Apprehensions of 7
Man that Know-
ledge: For some with Con Things : It is well. But you ought to remem
science of the Idol unto this ber, that [there is] not in all Men this Knowledge.
Hour, eat it as a Thing of- Some Christian Converts may not sufficiently ap-
fered unto an Idol; and their
Conscience being weak, is prehend this ; but may imagine there is really

some invisible Spirit present in the Idol, and act-
ing by and upon it. And in Consequence of this,
fome do, even until now, with Consciousness of some
religious Regard to the Idol; eat the Thing's in
Question, as what is facrificed to the Idol, intend-
ing thereby, to pay fome Homages and so their.
Conscience being too weak to withstand a Tempta-
tion to what in these Circumstances-is really Evil,
is defiled, and brought under a grievous and ter-

rifying Load of Guilt.
8 But Meat commend But why should we occasion this inconvenience? 8
eth us not to God: For For we know, that Meat commends us not, in any

nei.
Degree, to the Acceptance and Favour of GOD';

for

in

defiled.

(d) One GOD the Father.] In Answer to the Argument drawn from hence against the Detig of Chrift, see Dr. Guyse on this place, and Ďr. Edm. Calamy's Sermon on the Trinity, pag. 25, and 244. The Person to whom the Son as Lord or Médiator, introduces us, is undoubtedly the Father ;, nor is the son to be considered as another Gov. But it is not the Design of these Notes, largely to discuss Theological Controversies.

(e) Sitting

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