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cuous manner, what a family he has raised to himself among the children of men; and therefore he will assemble them all in their complete persons, and will do it with solemn pomp and magnificent parade. He will for this purpose send his own Son, with all his holy angels, and will cause the bodies of millions of his children, that have long dwelt in the dust, to spring out of it at once in forms of beauty and lustre, worthy their relation to him. This therefore is with beautiful propriety called by the apostle, The adoption, even the redemption of our body†; alluding to the public ceremony with which adoptions among the ancients were solemnly confirmed and declared, after they had been more privately transacted between the parties immediately concerned.

Oh Christians, how reasonable is it, that our souls should be rising with a secret ardour towards this blessed hope, this glorious abode! It is pleasant for the children of God to meet, and converse with one another upon earth; so pleasant, that I wonder they do not more frequently form themselves into little societies, in which, under that character, they should join their discourses and their prayers.—It is delightful to address to those, that, we trust, through grace are born of God. No discourses are more pleasant than those that suit them: And could we that are the ministers of Christ reasonably hope, that we had none but such to attend our labours, we should joyfully confine our discourses to such subjects.-Yet while we are here, we see imperfections in others; we feel them yet more painfully in ourselves: And as there is no pure unmixed society, no fellowship on earth that is completely holy and without blemish, so there is now no pure delight, no perfect pleasure to be met with here.—Oh when shall I depart from this mixed society, and reach that state, where all is good, all glorious! Where I shall see my heavenly Father, and all my brethren in the Lord; and shall behold them all for ever acting up to their character! All Giving thanks to the Father, who has made us meet to be partakers of the inheri tance of the saints in light‡! All for ever blessing and serving the great Redeemer; and without one ungenerous action, one reflecting word, one suspicious thought, for ever serving each other in love, rejoicing in each other's happiness, and with the most prudent and stedfast application for ever studying and labouring to improve it!

With the most earnest desire that you, my dear brethren and friends, may at length attain to this state of perfection and

* Mat. xxv. 31.


+ Rom. viii. 23.
3 Z

Col. i. 12.

glory and with a cheerful expectation, through divine grace, that I shall ere long meet many of you in it; I close this sermon, and these discourses: Not without an humble hope, that when we arrive at this blessed world, these hours which we have spent together in the house of God in attending them, will come into a pleasant remembrance; and that the God of all grace, to whose glory they are faithfully devoted, and to whose blessing they are humbly committed, will honour them as the means of increasing his family, as well as of feeding and quickening those who are already his regenerate children. Amen!








and truth of God saith, He that believeth not, shall be damned *. He shall not, as the baptist says, see life † : Nay, as our Lord himself expresses it in the strongest terms, He that believeth not, is condemned already; not only on account of all those other sins for which the wrath of God, to which he became immedi ately obnoxious, still abideth upon him; but for this additional reason of dreadful provocation, Because he hath not believed in the venerable and majestic name of the only-begotten son of God.

Without this faith, there is no knowledge that will save a man, though it should be the most various, and the most exact knowledge of the most divine and important subjects, which ever entered into a human mind. So far is it from this, that one need not scruple to say, a man might as reasonably expect to be saved by skill in the mathematics, or in music, as by skill in polemical divinity, though it were in its most essential branches, if after all it were no more than mere speculation.

And it is no less certain, that without this faith, morality will not save a man, be it ever so unexceptionable, be it ever so exemplary. This is indeed much better than the former; but if there be nothing more, it will be fatally ineffectual to the great purpose which we have now in view. I speak not now, as you may easily imagine, of such a continual and uniform obedience to the divine will, as perfectly answers the demands of God's original law; for no man ever has attained to this, or will ever in fact attain to it in this world: But I speak of what the world generally calls morality, a freedom from gross impiety and scandalous vice, yea, though attended with the practice of the humane and social virtues. This is indeed amiable and honourable so far as it goes; and will undoubtedly have its reward, in the pleasure of such a conduct, in the esteem and love of mankind, and in the possession of many temporal advantages and blessings, which in the common course of providence are connected with it. But alas! it is after all a very partial and imperfect thing: And as a man may be temperate in himself; just, faithful, and benevolent to men; without having any appearance of religion towards God, or making any pretence to it: So he may have some sense of God upon his spirit, which one would think none but an atheist could entirely avoid, while for the neglect, or it may be the rejection of the gospel, he stands exposed to its sentence of condemnation. If Christ be not regarded as the rock on which we build our hopes, the foundation is sandy, and will be ruinous; and if we do not receive







My Dear Brethren and Friends, beloved in our common Lord, WHEN I first preached these plain sermons to my own congregation, which I here offer to your perusal, I was much surprised at the request which several of them made, that they might be printed: But I was yet more surprised, when, after having delivered the substance of them in one discourse at Rowell some time after, you so unanimously and affectionately made that request your own. I apprehended, that though the many excellent treatises we have on this subject already, might excuse my backwardness to comply with the first motion of this kind; yet absolutely to have refused your repeated solicitation might have appeared disrespectful to my good friends, and perhaps have looked like some unwillingness to bear my testimony to this great and important doctrine, in an age, in which the credit of many evangelical truths seems to be fallen very low.

I am really sorry I have delayed this little service so long; but it was chiefly owing to my desire of finishing my Sermons on Regeneration, which indeed cost me more labour than I at first apprehended. That seemed a business of such importance, that I knew not how to interrupt it: But as they are now almost printed off, I send out these discourses as a kind of supplement to them; and therefore they are printed in a form very fit to bind up with them. The delay is more excusable, as salvation by grace is not a subject which grows out of date in a few months. This glorious doctrine has been the joy of the church in all ages on earth; and it will be the song of all that have received it in truth throughout the ages of eternity, and be pursued in the heavenly regions with evergrowing admiration and delight.

I cannot conclude this short address, without congratulating you on the abundant goodness of God to you as a church, in bringing among you that worthy and excellent person*, under whose pastoral care you are now so happily placed. I know he is a faithful witness to the truths of the gospel, and rejoice in that rich abundance of gifts and graces which render him so fit to state and improve them in the most advantageous, as well as most agree

*The Rev. Mr. Jonathan Saunderson.

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