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hath made glad ? how many distrefied ones go with back bowed down always through the influence and burden of your strange doctrines? How came ye to rob them of their peculiar privileges and titles, calling them desponding believers, whom their God and Father had filled with the Holy Ghost, and all'his divine confolations and fruits, love, peace, hope, joy, Joy unspeakable and full of glory?
How came ye to overlook, 'that the infirmity; or weakness, which ye attributed to them, was their Itrength, their glory, their crown? What else mean fuch paffages as chefe?' He was crucified through is werkners; but raised again' by the power of God * Put to death in the flesh; but quickened by the
Spicit.' - And the years of the right hand of tlie Noft High, which he faid he would remember, are they not explained by fuch paffages as these? For *the joy that was set before him, he endured the
cross, and despised the shame, and is now fet down k again on the right hand of the Majesty on high. I
have glorified thee, upon earth: I have finished the to work which thou gavest me to do. And now, O F1
ther, glorify thou me with the glory whichi I had .. with thee before the world was;' which glory is fpd"ken of in the book of Proverbs, « The Lord poffeffèd come in the beginning of his way, before his works
of old. I was set up from everlasting. Then I was <by him as one brought up with him: and I was ** daily his delight, rejoicing always before him: re
joicing in the habitable parts of his earth, and my i délights were with the fons of men. Was it not
for, the joy of bringing many fons and daughters to glory; that he came into the world, 'made of a woman, made under the law, made the curse?' Yéa verily; for their fakes, in the days of his felh, he • offered up prayers and supplications, with strong
crying and tears, to bim that was able to fave bin * from death;' which he was then undergoing, and
was heard according to all his desire, and exalted for his submission and obedience to his Father. It was he who funk in the miry clay; and was raised, and set upon a rock. The waves of wrath went over him, the deep waters broke in upon his soul, and his soul, was troubled; so that he cried, ! My foul is, forrow« ful, exceeding forrowful, forrowful round about, • sorrowful even to death.' His spirit was distracted, torn asunder by the terrors of Jehovah. The arrows of God stuck fast in him : the mercy of God went clean from him; and the judgments of God refter, upon him, for a light to the nations of them who are saved ; that they might have the boldness, and Dot the amazement, through the blood of their Lord, the atonement; who obtained for them the remiffion and kingdom, not in the way of favour or mercy to himself, but in the way of strict abfolute justice, as the due wages of his own moft absolute perfect obes dience in their stead.
But alas! though all this true doctrine concerning the sufferings of the Lord and following glory be ftrenuously maintained by those men we speak of, yet they have not thought of it in such as the abovementioned passages of the Psalms; and therefore, according to the softest thing that can be said, they have inadvertently made all they maintain of the truth in fo far of none effect, by pouring into the hearts of God's children the vinegar, wormwood, and gall of God's wrath, which their Surety drank wholly up to their immortal confolation. Wherefore, to afcribe to them any part of the expiatory sufferings of their Lord, as described in the words of the Holy Ghost; what is it, let candour say, but implicit blasphemy? designed, or undesigned, does not alter the case of those who are wounded, when they ought to be healed.
The question here is not, whether there be fuch a doctrine or no, as those men plead for; but whe
ther it be to be found in those advanced proofs of " theirs from the Pfalms, which, it is alledged in op: position to their sentiments, have a sense of their own, quite separate from, and absolutely unconnect. ed with, if not altogether eversive of theirs ?
If they would allow any weight at all to their poo fitions, and not expose themselves with their tenets to ridicule, they ought to thew the world the sealed authority of the Lord fupreme, the only Judge of fuch controversies. Let them carry the cause to the only lawful court which binds the confcience of the Christian, and hear what 'the apostles of Christ say, whom he commissioned his ruling and judging Princes over all the Israel of God, to bind and loole on carth all those things which he himself hath bound and loofed in heaven. We behold them endowed for this purpose with power from on high, shortly after the afcenfion of the Lord, and not before; it upon their decisions, therefore, from the beginning this of their acts to the end of their testimony, let us reft all our matters : neither does this make void Mofes and the Prophets, any more than the Lord made void his own parables by his interpretations of them; or the prophecies and the law, by fulfilling them.
The apostles, the apostles alone, are the voice of God to the Christian churches, and not Mofes and the Prophets. Let nothing therefore be imprinted on our hearts, but the hand-writing of the aposties. The hand-writing of the apostles is God's imprimafur.
Do you believe, then, O friends, and freely allow us, that the Spirit of Christ in his apostles is his own, his only interpreter, exclusive of you and of all the universe? You must either give up your argument, 'take shame to yourselves, and give God the glory, or advance some other guise kind of proofs than thofe from the Psalms, from Job, or even those so much infifted apon by you all, ever and anon in
fifted upon, from Isaiah, chap. I. " Who is among • you that feareth the Lord, that obeyeth the voice • of his fervant, that walketh in darkness and hath • no light? let him trust,' &c. Is this a description of a believer in darkness; and without light (as your argument supposeth) concerning his fpiritual state, or his interest in the love of God? According to the prophetic style, one would naturally think in this place of a person in some temporal calamity, who was afsured of his eternal happiness, but uncertain as to the particular event of his earthly affairs, which his heavenly Father had kept in his own hand, for the daily exercise of faith, whereby such a one was afsured 'all would be well upon the whole, though for the present he had in himself no assurance of his way, but only in his God, whom he could trust in all events; as if a son, destitute of all things, in the midst of a dreary wilderness, not knowing one inch of his way towards safety, should there, upon the spot, meet with his own father, friend, and guide, who had come forth to seek him, with power, and will, and great desire, to conduct him to his owi abode. But you have other things in your head.
• Feareth! and obeyeth!' Are fear and obedience, then, marks with you of one that knoweth not whether the Lord loveth him or not? The apostles would have taught you, that there can be no such fear, or reverence and obedience, as here fpoken of, without love for their principle; and no such love without the person's knowledge of God's love to him, • Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that • he loved us. We love him, because he first loved • us; and manifested his love to us. Obedience is the expression of this love : thus the debtor and MaFy loved much, because they knew their Lord, their creditor, had forgiven them much. But you join creeds with one who daringly said, “ God can read b3
" the truth of love in thy heart
' towards him, when * thou canst not read the truth of love in his • heart towards thee.' But, says another, whofe creed is rather more sterling, as being one whom God hath confirmed, and upheld for a pattern to all them, who should afterwards believe, « I know
whom I have believed Who loved me, and gave r* him for me.'
Your allegation from Song ii. is answered by these remarks: for, whatever the spoufe fought her Lord, her Beloved, for, it was not for clearnefs about her interest in his love; for she loved him because she knew her interest in his love. But how absurd is. your application of this place? is it possible for you to ascertain your sense of it? might you not as 'well, as some of you have done, have alledged these words of the Lord in proof of your point, that the children of God are fometimes forsaken, and know not his love to them; therefore they cleave to him by the faith of adherence, as you speak, while they want what you call the faith of afsurance; and so cry in their mournful moods, when they are without the fun, with their Lord' on the cross, " My God, my * God, why haft thou forsaken me?' Dare you stand by this interpretation ? fee where it will lead you; being, if it be any thing at all in your way, a con. clusion' against the Son of Cod, that he was for a time without the knowledge of his interest in his Father's love. But why was he forsaken? was it not that those who believe on him might never bel forfaken?
Again, Ifaiah xlii. 3. "A bruised reed shall he < not break; and the smoking flax shall he not
quench,' makes nothing for your purpose, being descriptive of the character of the Mefliah, going on in the steadiness of his heart, fulfilling his Father's counsels, upholding his own elect, and all things for the elect's fake, till he has called, prepared, and