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and feeling it to be the power of God unto salvation,' is actually to believe it till we can, till the Spirit of truth' makes us feel its efficacy.
"To eat or drivk spiritually,' and 'to believe or receive the truth,' are gospel terms of the same import. Come, then, leare all thy excuses to those who have learned the lessons of voluntary humility.'. If the king offered thee a present, would it not be impertinent to make him stretch out his hand for one hour, under pretence that thou art not yet worthy of his bounty? And thinkest thou that a similar conduct is not highly provoking to the King of kings ? Does he not complain,
I called and ye refused :-1 stand at the door and knock :-All the day long have I stretched my hands to a gainsaying and disobedient people ?' Come, then, know thy distance : Know thy place : Know thy God : Send thy absurd ceremoniousness back to Ge. neva : Crucify thy guilty fears on Calvary; and make the best of thy way to Sion, the mountain where God has made unto all people a feast of fat things, a feast of wines, offat things full of marrow, of wines well refined.
• There is room,' says the Lord : ' Draw them with the hands of a man ;' with arguments, threatenings, promises, expostulations, &c. • Compel them to come in.' There is balm enough in Gilead, bread enough in my house, love enough in my heart, blood enough in the fountain that my Son has opened for sin, grace enough in the river that flows from my throne, truth enough in the gospel of my grace, to heal, wourish, delight, transport a world of prodigal sons and daugh
And is there not enough for thee, who fearest God?' For thee, to whom the word of this christian, this great salvation is sent ?' Did not Christ himself break the bread of consolation for thee, when he said, "Take, eat, this is my body, which is broken for you? Did he not offer thee the cup of salvation, when he added ? “This is the cup of the New Testament in my blood shed for the remission of sins; drink ye all of it,' and carry it into all nations—'preach it,' offer it, to every creature.' I bring thee this bread ; it came
down from heaven to give life to the world ;' it was surely consecrated in Gethsemane, and broken on Calvary, for thee man, and for thee woman, and for thy salvation. Oh! if the fragments of perishing barleybread were so to be gathered, that none of them might be lost; with what thankfulness shouldst thou receive the morsel which I set before thee! With what'hunger after righteousness' shouldst thou feast upon it ! How shouldst thou try to relish every crumb, every particle of gospel-truth ;-of “the meat that endureth to ererlasting life ;'-of the word of the Lord, that abideth for ever!'
Wonder at our Lord's condesceusion. Lest thou shouldest think, that the word of his servants is insignificant, although it is the word of truth; he prays particularly for them, that shall believe on him through their words;' and he asks, 'How is it that ye do not discern this time of love? Yea, and why even of yourselves judge ye not what is right,' and makes for your peace ?--'O Ye, that have no money, come, buy and eat, buy wine and milk : Yea, eat and drink abundantly, 0 beloved, without money, and without price. Hearken diligently unto me: Eat ye that which is good: Let your soul delight itself in fatness,' in the richest gospel truths. Whosoever will, let him come and take of the bread and water of life freely.' Thus - the Water and the Blood, the Spirit and the Word,' sweetly agree to invite thee, to chide thy delays, to bid thee come and welcome to Christ, and to all the unsearchable riches of his grace.
If thou refusest this drop of gospel cordial, this crumb of the bread of life ; or if, after a faint attempt to take it, thou sinkest back into thy stupid unbelief, I beg leave to inquire into the reason. (1.) Is it' the hour and the power of darkness ?? Is thy mind so confused, and thy heart so distracted, that in this moment thou canst neither consider, nor welcome the truth : In this case, wait groaning: If thou canst not wait ' in hope, believing against hope,' endeavour at least not to yield to despair. This storm will soon
blow over; "the time of refreshing will come;' and the Lord, who permits thee to have fellowship with him in Gethsemane, will soon enable thee to triumph with him upon the mount.
Hast thou little or no appetite for the truth? In this case, I fear, thou still feedest upon husks and ashes, which spoil thy spiritual digestion ; and I advise thee to exercise repentance ; remembering that to be car. nally minded is death,' and that the promise is not made to the slothful ; but to them, who through faith and patient continuance in well-doing, seek for glory' -to them who, in taking up their cross and denying themselves, inherit the gospel-promises.
Hast thou made an absurd covenant with unbelief, as Thomas ? Art thou determined not to credit God's record, unless he come down to thy terms? Dost thou still confound faith with its first fruits, and God's works with thine own?-If this be thy case, how justly may the Lord suffer thee to go on moping, not only for a week, as the obstinate apostle did; but for years ! And after all, when thou hast long dishonoured God, and tormented thyself by thy wilful unbelief; thou wilt be glad to do upon a death-bed, what I want thee to do now.
Being then surrounded by threatening billows, driven from thy carnal moorings, and tossed into true wisdom, thou wilt, without ceremony, venture upon the merits and blood of thy Saviour, and strive to enter by wrestling faith, and agonizing prayer, into
righteousness, peace, aud joy in the Holy Ghost.' Happy would it be for thee, in the mean time, if thou wert not wiser in thy own conceit than seven men that can render a reason; if thou wert not obstinately bent upon nursing thy curse ; if thou didst confer with flesh and blood no more ; and if, regarding the gospel. passport more than Solifidian embargoes, and the word of God more than the dispiriting speeches of fainthearted spies, thou becamest one of the " whom it is our heavenly Father's good pleasure to give the kingdom ;' one of the VIOLENT who take it by force,'-thou wouldst soon find, that these two dispo
sitions are as compatible as the two gospel-axioms; and, receiving the end of thy faith,' thou wouldst soon, perhaps to-day, experience the astonishing force of Truth, and taste the ravishing powers of the world to come.
An Address to Christian Believers.
Ye taste those powers, happy believers, who see that God is love, boundless, free, redeeming, pardoning, comforting, sanctifying love in Jesus Christ. The more you believe it, and the more you feel it. Do then always " the work of faith,' and you shall always
aboand in the patience of hope, and in the labour of love. You have believed the truth, and it has made you free : 'Rejoice then in the truth :' Worship the God of Truth : Triumph in Christ, 'the living Truth :' And be daily baptized with the Spirit of Truth :' Beware of enthusiasm : Speak the words of soberness and Truth :' God is not the author of nonsense.
Sail with all possible care through the straits of Pharisaism aud Antinomianism. Many, by deviating from the word, have almost made shipwreck of the faith. While some rest in high Pharisaic forms, others catch at empty Solifidian shadows; or slide into the peculiarities of a censorious Mysticism, harden themselves against the gentleness of Christ,' and oppose a part of the truth as it is in Jesus : Embrace ye the whole : Be valiant for the whole : Recommend the whole: But above all, bring forth the fruits of the whole.
Be steady : Many who believed once as firmly as you do, that Christ was a sacrifice for sin, consider him now only as a martyr for the truth. And some, who were fully persuaded that God is “ loving to every man' while the day of salvation lasts, now can bear, yea
perhaps delight to hear it insinuated, that he is graceless and merciless to myriads of his unborn creatures, Be not thus carried about by a blast of vain doctrine, in opposition to the full tide of scripture and reason. * Honour all men, and give double honour' to those to whom it is due ; but be not moved from your steadfastness either by vames or numbers. To judge of truth by popularity, is absurd. Warm, zealous meu, who can draw the attention, and work upon the passions of the populace, will always be popular; but popularity, you know, is no proof that any man's principles are uvexceptionable. Go not then by that deceitful rule. When truth is at stake, mind popular applause as little as a syren's sung; and regard a Bonner's rack as little as a Nebuchadnezzar's dulcimer. Be cast into the furnace of persecution with two como panions, rather than bow with thousands to the most shining, the most celebrated, and the richest image of error. If your two companions forsake you, Oh! do not forsake the truth. Turn not your back upon her, when she wants you most. Run not away from her colours, when the enemy pours in like a flood. If she be driven out of the professing church, follow her to the wilderness,-and, if need be, to the den of lions. There the God of Daniel will be with you; and from thence he will bring you out : For God will stand by the Truth, and she will prevail at last.
Buy her therefore at any rate; buy her, though yoa should give your last mite of wealth, and your last scrap of reputation for her : * And sell her not,' though you should gain the whole world by the unhappy bargain.
· These things,' O men of God, ‘have I written unto you conceruing them that [by fair shows of spirituality and voluntary humility] seduce you' into Pharisaism or Antinomianism : ' But the anointing, which you have received of God, abideth in you, [since you bave not been seduced,] and it is truth, and is no lie, abide in it therefore : Err not from the Truth. Walk in the Truth : Do nothing against the Truth, but for the Truth: And, as you have purified your souls by obey