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ed to himself? And are not all the Promises of the Believer's Perseverance, Teat, and Amen in Christ, with whom the Believer is one mystical and fpiritual Person ?—Sooner shall Heaven and Earth pass away, than the blessed Redeemer shall forget or neglect the Members of his Body, and the Objects of his Love; they were eternally chofen in him, they are his by Covenant, they are united to him by Faith, their Interest is his, and he is gone to take Possession of their Inheritance, that where he is they may be also.—Thus are we kept by the Power ot God through Faith unto Salvations But how could we stand one Day ox Hour against the Efforts of our own Corruptions, the Crast, Malice, and Power of Satan's Temptations, and the Snares and Entanglemen ts of a wicked World, if we were not founded upon this Rock?
And now, Sir, you are to judge, whether there be not more than a doctrinal Acquaintance with our Union to Christ necessary for us, if we would either be justisied in the Sight of God, obtain that Holiness, without which no Man can see the Lord, live near to God, or hold the Beginning of our Confidence fiedfast to the End.
By what has been said, you cannot but see, that it should be your great Inquiry, how this Union may be obtained, if you have not the Evidence of it, or how it- should be evidenced to yourself, if yOu are in Doubt about it.
If you have no Evidence of your Union to Christ, it concerns you to realize your natural Enmity of Heart to God, deeply to affect your So'al with a Sense of the dreadsul Misery of a Christless State, and to lament before God thcFollu'.ion of voar Nature, the Hardness of your Heart, the Guilt of your Sins; and the amazing Destruction and Perdition unto which you are thereby expofed It
'H h conconcerns you (as I have often advised you) to lie at Mercy, to come to the Footstool of sovereign Grace, self-loathing and self-condemning, pleading with importunate Ardour, for the powersul Influences of the blessed Spirit, to dra\y and unite you to Christ.—It concerns you to be caresul and diligent in your Attendance upon all the Duties of religious Worship, and to be sicdfajl and immovable, always abounding in the Work of the Lord, if you 'would not have your Labour in vain in the Lord. —It concerns you, though watchsul, active, and diligent, yet utterly to despair of all Help in your selt, and to maintain a lively Impression, that all the Progress of spiritual Lise must flow from your Union to Jesus Christ; and that you must therefore rely upon him only, to do all in you and for you. It likeuays concerns you to look unto Jesus Christ, not only as sufsicient, but a compassionate Saviour, willing to receive you to Mercy ih your present State how bad soever; and therefore to endeavour a cheersul and immediate Compliance with the Guspel-csser, without waiting for moral Qualisications to recommend you to the Redeemer's Acceptance; and let Christ Jesus be your steady Hope and Considence, whatever Darkness, Difsiculties, Trials or Ternptations you may meet withal in your Way.
If you are Ln poubt about your State, and in an uncomfortable Suspence whether you are united to Christ or mot, do not rest satissied in such a Case, wherein your eternal A L L is at Stake, and in a precarious Uncertainty.—Bilt labour to resolve your Doubts, by the lively Exercise of Faith ; and by an humble chearsul Considence and Delight in the blessed Saviour. Then may you know that he dwells in your Heart by Faith, when you are rooted and grounded in Love, Eph. iii. 17.—Labour to evidence your Union to Christ, by having your Heart purified by Faith; and your Affections spiritual and heavenly. Then may you know that you are rifen with Chrift, when you feek thofe things which are \bove, where Christ sittelh at the Right Hand of Go4; and when you place your Affections on Things above, and not on 'Things on the Earth,
Col. iii. 1, 2 Labour to clear up. this Doubt, by
the Exercise of all the several Graces of the Spirit of Lise. If you live in the Exercise of Faith, Repentance, Love to God, Humility, Hope in Christ, Desire aster, and Delight in him; isyou bring forth the Fruits of theSpirit, which are Love, Joy, Peace, Long-suffering, Gentleness, Goodness, Faith, Meekness, Temperance, hereby you may know, that he ahideth in you, by the Spirit which he hath given you, 1 John iii. 24..—Labour likeways to clear up this Difficulty, not only by the Lise, but by the Growth of Grace. If you grow more humble, self-abasing, and self-condemning: If you grow more penitent; and more passionately groan under the Burden of, and mourn aster Deliverance from all your Sins; if your Love to God increases, and you take more Dehght in him and in his Ways, or at least long aster a Lise of nearer Communion with him, with more ardent Desire; if you are more spiritual in your Thoughts, Meditations and Affections, more heavenly in your Conversation; and more caresul of your respective Duties both to God and Man, then you may know that Christ abidetb in you, and you in him; in that you bring forth much Fruit, John xv. 5.
Ifvou get satisfying Evidences of your Union to Ghrist. adore, admire, and praise the insinite Condescension, and the astonishing Love of the glorious Redeemer, in taking such Dust and Asties, such Sin and Pollution, into Union with himself- ConH h 2 template template the amazing Transaction of Love with Admiration; and let the Love of Christ constrain you to live to the Praife of the Glory of that Grace by •which you become 'accepted in the Beloved.
That Christ may abide in you, and you in him, that 50u may win 1 hrist, and be found in him at his Appearance and Kingdom, and that you may reign with him for ever, is the Prayer of, S I R,
LETTER XVIII. Wherein fome Antinomian Abufes of the Doctrine of Believers Union to Christ, or Pleas from it for Licentiousnefs and Security in sinning, are considered and obviated. •
ALLOW me the Freedom to tell you, that the Consequences you draw from the Doctrine of our Union to Christ, as I have represented it, are without any Foundation; and that a j ust View of the Case must convince you, that this Doctrine gives no " Advantage to licentious and latitudinarian "Principles," but the direct contrary.——I shall therefore endeavour, according to your Desire, to consider the Antinomian Principles you are pleased to propofe; and see whether they " naturally sol"low from what I taught in my last."
"You do not see (you tell me) if the Principles! "tedch are allowed, how the Antinomians can be "charged with Error, in supposing that the true , "Believer has no Cause to repent of his Sins, or to "entertain any Disquietment of Mind with respect "to them, since he is united to Christ, and all his
*' Sins are charged to Christ's Account, whereby *' he has satissied for'era all. Why therefore should "the Believer be concerned about a Debt which "is sully discharged ? —Justice is satissied with re"spect to nim; Christ delights in him, as a Mem"her of his own Body; the Spirit of God dwells ** in him,, notwithstanding any of his Sins and "Impersections. Why may he not therefore be "persectly easy with respect to Sin; and look up"on it (as a modern Antinomian expresses himu self) unworthy of oar leaji regard?'" To this I answer,
I. That no Man who is practically consormed to this Antinomian Principle, can know himself to be a Believer; and therefore there can be no Foundation for this Reasoning in any Person.whatsoever. Were your arguing allowed to be just, it can take Place with none but thofe who have insallible Evidence of their Union to Christ; which it is impossible any Man should have, who is not burdened with his Sins, who does not hate them, and groin after Deliverance from them.—Repentance is the genuine and necessary Fruit of a true Faith' They Jhall look upon Me whom they have pierced, and fball mourn, Zech. xii.. 10/ That thou masfi remember, and be confounded, and never open thy Mouth any more, becaufe of thy Shame, when I am Pacified towards thee for all that thou haft done, faith the Lord God, Ezek. xvi'. 63. And ye shall be tny People, and I will be your Cod. Then Jhall ye remember your oniin evil Ways, and your D ings that were not good; andfhall loath yourfelves in your own Sight, for your Iniquities, and for your ^dominations, Ezek. xxxvi. 2S. 31.—It is the true Believer, and he only, that is capable aright to mourn for Sin, truly to hate it, and to groan under the Bur, den of it. Unbelievers may mourn under a Sense Hh 3 of