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Circumcifon, a Seal of the Righteousness ofs erm the Faith which he had, being yet uncircumcised ; that he might be the Father of all them that believe, though they be not circumcised; that Righteousness might be imputed to them also : And the Father of Circumcifon to them who are not of the Circumcison only, but also walk in the Steps of that Faith of our Father Abraham, which he had, being yet uncircumcised. For the Promise that he hould be the Heir of the World, was not to Abraham or to his Seed through the Law, but through the Righteousness of Faith, Rom. iv. 9-13. Therefore it is of Faith, that it might be by Grace ; to the End the Promise might be sure to all the Seed, not to that only which is of the Law, but to that also which is of the Faith of Abra. ham, who is the Father of us all, ver. 16.
Not that our Faith, or Confidence and Trust in what Christ has done and suffered for us, is to compensate and make amends for our doing nothing. Far from that; we are to outdo the Yews, we are to outdo the strictest Sects amongst them, or else we do nothing that will forward our Salvation. So our Saviour plainly tells us : I say unto you (faith he) except your Righteousness exceed the
S Yivm Righteousness of the Scribes and Pharisees, ye shall in no Case enter into the Kingdom of Heaven, Matt. v. 20. Though therefore you are not to boast of your Works, nor to confide in, or depend on them, yet must you be as zealous as, more zealous indeed than, the rigidest Jews, than even the Zealots themselves to perform and exert them. Love your Nation, and, if you are able, build them a Synagogue: Or if you have one that is built to your Hands; beautify and repair it. Let God's House be as decent as your own; and be in it as duly as the Doors are open: But still remember to cry out with the Centurion, Lord, I am not worthy that thou foouldst come under M Y Roof. <
Nor content yourselves with the Worship of God alone (and indeed if you worship him as you ought to do, you will not be so content) you will be diligent also in the Performance of all Duties to your Neighbours and yourselves. Though you will not, with the Pharisee, boast and vaunt to God of your Deeds; yet you will perform as great as he did. You will not be Extortioners, Unjust or Adulterers, Luke xviii. 11, 12. You will fast in due Seasons; twice a Week, if you please, give "Tithes you ought to do,SEI*M* and of all you possess; of Mint and Anise \ and Cummin^ small as well as great, and that without Modus, Fraud or Covin. All these ye may do, and ought to do, as well as the weightier Matters of the Law, Judgment, Mercy and Faith, Matt. xiii. 23.
But still, when all is done, you are not to depend on, or value yourselves for, the Performance of all. When you have done all these Things that are commanded you, Christ himself instructs you to fay, We are' unprofitable Servants, we have done that which was our Duty to do, Luke xvii. 10. For the Acceptance of what is done, you must still have Recourse to the Merits of Christ, from thence expect your Imperfections to be made up, your Wants to be supplied, your Omissions over-looked, and your Sins forgiven. For in the best of your Works all these will meet: And therefore all your Confidence and Hope must be placed in the Mediation and Intercession of Christ, and of his Acceptance of your sincere Endeavours, and Presentment of them in Union with his own all.sufficient Sacrifice and Merits to his Father. And unless your Deeds are thus ac
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s E RM. companied with Faith, and your Faith with 1 good Works, it would have been better for you to have been Heathens still; since if either be wanting, the other is in vain. Christ, though his Name and his Will be revealed to you, and though his Name be called upon by you, will never come under your Roof here; nor receive you to his own Habitation hereafter.
All Men to die.
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HEB. ix. 27. — 7/ is appointed unto Men once to die,-*-*
THESE Words are very few but verysERM, full j very concise but very intelligible, .7^1 They stand in no Need of being opened by taking a View of the Context, but are as plain of themselves as I could propose to make them, by the largest Paraphrase or Exposition. Without detaining you therefore with any Introduction, I shall immediately proceed to set them home upon your Minds, by enlarging upon the three following Particulars. ,
I. First, That it is appointed unto all Men to die. . .
II. Secondly, That it is appointed unto them to die but once. And,
III. Thirdly, That That Once is at a Time undetermined.
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