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himself shews this plainly in the chapter out of which my text is taken; and that any man may clearly see that ever was enlightened at all. Blejsed (faith Christ) are they which do hunger and thirst aster righteousness, for they shall be filled. Which shews three things. 1st, That these poor fouls had no righteousness of
their own; seeling which made them hunger and
Secondly, The righteousness there meant comes by promise: They stall be filled.
Thirdly, That righteousness must be persect and compleat, answering every demand of law and justice: and every end and expectation of the distressed sinner; such as, delivering him from guilt and wrath, fear and torment, death and damnation. And it must procure God's favour here, and secure glory hereafter, otherwise the sinner never can be fatisfied, much less filled with it. This is the righteousness meant in my text, that far enough exceeds the righteousness of the Scribes and Pharisees. And this righteousness gives right and title to the kingdom: "For Christ ** is made of God unto us wisdom, righteousness, f fanctification, and redemption." No other righteousness, reader, shall ever admit any soul living, either into the kingdom of grace, or the kingdom of glory. M In this raiment of needle-work shall the "Church be brought unto the King, and shall enter "into the King's palace;" and they that are not found in this wedding-garment Hull be cast intp
outer outer darkness. Reader, "beware of the leaven of "the Pharisees, which is hypocrisy."
I come now to shew the righteousness of the Scribes and Pharisees, and the " excellency of "Christ's righteousness, which is unto all, and "upon all, that believe." The Scribes wcie writers and expounders of the Law and the Prophets, and pretended to very extraordinary wisdom. The Pharisees were very observant of the letter matters of the Law, in which their self-righteousness chiefly stood; and they pretended to no small degree of fanctity, on which account others were nqt allowed to touch the hem of their robes. The Scribe and the Pharisee were the two first, in the judgment of the poor and ignorant Jews, that would enter the kingdom of heaven; but Christ displaces them, and sets the Publican and the Harlot in their room. They walked in long robes, and were very desirous of it; they made many long prayers; they observed numbers of seasts and fasts; they loved greetings in the markets, and chief rooms at seasts; they appeared very righteous before men, and loved to be called Rabbi, Rabbi; they practised a deal of washing of seet, hands and head, cups and platters; they compassed sea and land to make converts, and sounded a trumpet before them when they gave their alms; they bound grievous burdens on men's shoulders, but never touched one part of the load; they got into Mofes's seat, to give laws, and contra
dieted in lise all that they faid by word. "They say, fC and do not." This was their righteousness; and now you shall see their zeal in desence of it. They were desperate enemies to the power of godliness, the truth of the Gofpel, and the wisdom that comes from above. They were implacable opposers of Antinomians, Bad Spirits, and all that were not the prosessed disciples of Mofes. They ridiculed the God of heaven, calling him Beelzebub; they cursed the objects of his choice, blasphemed the Holy Ghost, and required a sign from Heaven. They traduced Paul as prophaning the Temple, and giving licence to sin, by preaching up evil that good might come; and with teaching people to forfake Mofes, with being a Heretick, a turner of the world upside down, a mover of sedition, and a ringleader of the sect of the Nazarenes: "But aster "the way which they called Heresy, so worshipped c* Paul the God of his fathers." They oppofed the Apostles in every city, in every town, in every synagogue, and in every house, with the doctrine of the Law as the only Rule of Lise—*c Except ye "be circumcised and keep the Law of Mofes, ye "cannot be faved." They came in privily to spy out the faints liberty, that they might bring them into bondage. They oppofed the Gofpel, rent their cloaths, cast dust into the air, gnashed their teeth at the faints, resisted and blasphemed, and abused the name of the Saviour upon madmen and devils; and all this in zeal for the Law, for purity,
and and for inherent holiness. They went about tQ establish their own righteousness, as thofe do who exclude the righteousness of Christ from my text; and so stumbled at the Rock of ages, were broken off by unbelief, arid scattered into all winds, and remain to this day without a King, without a Priest, without a Prophet, without an Ephod, without a Teraphim, and without a Sacrifice. And all that they got by their religion, and for their pretended zeal for the Law, was the destruction of themselves, as a church, state, and nation; and* what is more dreadsul, they imprecated and procured the innocent blood of Christ and the curse of Heaven upon their own offspring, from age to age, yea, to more than twenty generations. But I have no call to go any farther in describing a Pharisee, for the Church of Christ swarms alive with them; and in this glass the Reader, if he has any eyes, may see his hundreds, if not his thoufands.
But the righteousness of the Saints far enough exceeds the righteousness of the Scribes: " For they "receive the blessing from the Lord, and righte"oufness from the God of their falvation. This is ** the generation of them that seek him, that seek "thy face, O God of Jacob." Psalm xxiv. 5,6. The righteousness that God bestows on his faints is a divine, a persect, and art everlasting one; and without a persect righteousness no foul can stand in God's presence, or sind access to him irt this world:
for, for, is we have access with confidence, it is by the faith of Christ; and if we enter heaven, and see God's face with acceptance in the world to come, it is because we are made righteous in our Elder Brother, and hold the truth as it is in him. "Open J* the gates, that the righteous nation which keepeth "the truth may enter in." Isai. xxvi. 2. This is the wisdom of God, and the glory of the faints; the other is the invention of men, and the snare of fools: But "their rock is notas our Rock, our enemies them"selves being judges." So I preach, and so you believe; and neither such preaching, nor such believing, shall ever be in vain in the Lord.
We have seen what the Redeemer fays of the weighty matters of jhe Law; which is the first table, and which respects God: and we sind thofe things are wrought in all the faints.
We have seen, likewise, the lejser matters, or the least commandments; which are the second table, and respect brethren and neighbours: and we sind that they are the Pharisees in heart, and the false Preachers in the church, who break them; and that they are broken by thofe who hate. Dander, censure, and condemn, the children of God—under which we are exhorted to be patient and submissive, that we may appear to be the children of our Father which is in heaven, who sufilri as much dishonour from their neglecting the weighty matters of the Law, as we do by their breaking the least command• . ments