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to every thing which may indeed fave him. But where the heart is rightly understanding, and truly fenfible, there is not only a confideration of meanes, but an ilimited refolution for all the wayes of Salvation: whatsoever courfe God doth by his Word reveale and prefcribe, for that it is refolved and purpofed, though they may be contrary to my proud reafoning and capacity; though they may be contrary to the bent of my affections;though they may require much time and employment,
What the Princes speak with a difembling heart, that the finner rightly fenfible of his condition, affirms with a plaine fpirit, of true intention. The Lord be a true and faithful witnesse between us, if we do not even according to all things for the which the Lordtby God shall fend thee to us. Whether it be good, or whether it be evil, we will obey the voice of the Lord our God to whom we fend thee, that it may be well with us when we obey the voice of the Lord our God.
He who will be faved muft come to this,to deny his own will; to crucifie his own affections; to captivate his own imaginations;to refigne up his own defires and pleasures; to afflict his heart for his fins; to give up himself to the rule and command of Gods Word; to draw off his heart from the world; to fettle all his confidence upon Jefus Chrift; to watch over his own fpirit; To love the Lord God with all his foul, and with all his might Thefe and other things are required as the way to life, and unto them all, doth a finner, rightly fenfible, yield up himself with all readiness and gladneffe.
For as much as, though there may be fome difficulty in thefe, yet there is Salvation by them; yea, and there is a fingular help for them, as well as a special reward, but the prefent and former condition and way of finne is engraven with much paines, and fore horror, and death, and hell; But I pafs
Another conclufion from the words is this, when God doth throughly work upon mens confciences, perfonall injurionfneffes must be forgotten by them who are to deal with them.
You fee here that Paul and Silas ípeakes not a word of this cruel ufage towards them, but inftantly addreffe themselves to the direction of his fafety and comfort, Believe in the Lord fesus Christ, &.c.
We read of the Father of the Prodigall, that when his fon came humbling and bewailing his fore-paft mifcarriages of Prodiga lity and Luxury. He saw him a far off,and ran to meet him, and kiffed him, and put the raiment on him, and a gold Ring. He did not rate and upbraid him; Nay,I will not look on thee, I will not accept of thee, go now to thy Harlots, amongst whom thou haft riotoufly wafted all that goodly portion which I put into thy hands:0,no,he accufeth not him, whom he heares to accufe him. felf, and reviles not him, whom he feeth to condemn himself. It is enough that his Son who was loft,is now returned ;and that be who was dead,is now alive.
We must imitate our heavenly Father in this, who in the Covenant of Grace, will forgive our iniquities, and remember our fins Jer. 31. 34no more. So in another place, If the wicked will turn from all his finnes that he hath committed, and keep all my ftatures, &c. All bis tranfgreffions which he hath committed,they shall not be mentioned unto him. Why? Brethren, If God forgives the man, all the wrongs done against him, should not we forgive the smaller trefpaffes against us? and what have we to do to upbraid, when God is pleafed to forgive and convert? and what should we ftand upon our refpects,when God hath paft by all the indignities caft upon his honour and glory?
There are two forts of finners.
Stout,and refolute, who know how to flight mercy, negle& command, and to fear at the threatnings; A fevere denun ciation of judgment and wrath, a conviction and aggravation of their finnes, are the proper difcoveries for them: For where hath God fpoken a word of peace,or comfort, or ease to fuch?
Bleeding and affected, who tremble at threatnings, gafpe for mercy, faint for deliverance, and change, Here now Minifters must have eyes of pity, and tongues and hands of Oy!; they must not pour in fcorpions, nor add terrors to the afflicted, but Preach liberty to the Captives. They must binde up the broken hearted, and give them beauty for afbes, the Oyl of joy for mournings, the gar Efay 61. ment of prayer for the spirit of heavine se, that they may be called trees of righteoufneffe, the planting of the Lord, Hei, 61. 1,2,3. In these cafes, we are not to look on our felves,but on our office; not on our own indignities, but on the patients neceflities that C 2
Troubled fouls must be directed to Chrift: for this is it which Paul and Silas advileth the afflicted Jayler, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, &c. They do not direct him to any man or Angel, to any pilgrimage or Saints, they fet him not up on any felfe-standing project, but, Beleeve in the Lord. Jesus Christ.
But why to Christ?
Because none is appointed to relieve a troubled foul but Chrift. Him bath God the father fealed,and he was anointed to preach glad tidings.
Secondly, none is able to pacifie and quiet a troubled foul, but Chrift; whatsoever is finful or imperfect,cannot be a ftay to an afflicted confcience; But Chrift hath perfect righteousnesse ; he hath wrought full redemption, he is able to fave to the ut most.
That which cannot fatisfie Gods Juftice,can never pacifie, an afflicted heart; but if God might be fully fatisfied, if he might be reconciled, then the confcience would be quiet; now Chrift hath done this, he hath made peace,and become a curse, and is a propi tiation, &c.
He will relieve the afflicted heart. He is called a merciful High Priest, and one who is touched with the feeling of our infirmities, and he will not break the brused reed, and he calls the beavy laden io •come to him to be cafed.
There be three things which would marvelously eafe and refresh a troubled foul. One,if he could get off the guilt of former fins. Another, if he could get fuch a righteoufhefs,as with which he might boldly ftand before God. A third is, if he could get bis heart and wayes to be changed.Now Chrift can yield out all. this: his blood gets off the gilt of our fins, he is made fin for us, that we may be made the righteoufneffe of Gad in him; and he can change our natures by his bleffed Spirit. Therefore the Apoftle faith,that he is made, redemption, righteousnesse, and (an&tification unto us,
But I paffe over all thefe conclusions, and come to that upon
which I muft fomewhat infilt..
Faith in the Lord Jefus Chrift the onely
Parallel places are these. Mark, 16, 15. Goye into all the world and preach the Gofpel to every creature, 16. he that believ eth and is baptized shall be faved. Joh.3.16. God fo loved the world, that be gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not peròsb but have everlaßting life. A&. 4. 12. Neither is there Salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given amongst men whereby we must be saved.
For the discovery of this affertion,we muft open these particu Jars.
First, the meaning of each of these titles, (viz.) Jesus, and Christ, and Lord.
Secondly, what the believing in the Lord Jefus Chrift doth import.
Thirdly, how it may appeare to be the onely way of salva- ·
Fourthly, the usefull application of all this to our felves, What is the fenfe and fumme of those three titles fefus,Chrift, Lord,I fhall refolve them diftinctly.
fus fignifies a Saviour: as it was a name impofed from the pleasure of heaven, by an Angel, Mat. 1.21. Thou shalt call his name Jefus, for he shall fave his people from their finnes. The first name that you read of imposed on Chrift in the New-Teftament, is this name of Jefus; for the beft name that finners could poffibly defire to heare,was this, that God hath provided a Saviour for them. The Prophet Jaiab 9.6. faith, that his name shall be called wonderful,and indeed Jefus is a wonderful name: It is a name which breeds juftwonder and admiration to all the world, to men and Angels; it may make our hearts to wonder at the Mirandum A- hyperbole, of Gods love (as one of the Fathers fpeaks) that he fhould notwithstanding our vite deferts) beftow a Saviour up on us, who else had been loft for ever.
The Apostle faith, Phil. 2.9, 10. That it is a name above all names, no name like it, either for the authority which was conferred on him, who bare that name; or for the comfort which that name beares in it, for a finner.
Therefore laid the Angel to the Shepherds, fear not, for bebold, I bring you good tydings of great joy which shall be to all people, for unto you is borne this day in the City of David, a Saviour, Luk. What kind of 2. 11. yea, that is good news indeed. A Saviour for a finner: Saviour Chrift no fuch news as that!
Now here obferve divers things. The Sonne of God is a fingular Saviour. No Saviour in all the world like him. Joshuah is called a Saviour: and the fudges were called fo, yet the Son of God is a Saviour infinitely beyond them. For,
They could fave bodies only, they could not fave fouls, not one of them, not all of them; to ransome, to rescue, to redeem a foul, requires more then an arme of flesh: Flefh may fave or protect flesh, but he must be more then flesh who can save a foul: Now Jefus Christ is a Saviour of fouls, 1 Pet.1.9. Rev. 20 4. the price of our fouls is in his blood,with it be bought them and redeemed them.
They could fave from fome outward mifery, the tyranny and oppreffion of the enemy, they have oft-times put back, but from