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not, Ifa. lv. 2. Our father Adam left his whole family with a confcience full of guilt, and a heart full of unfatisfied defires. Thus we naturally having a reftless confcience, and a reftlefs heart, the foul as naturally falls a labouring for reft to them. And it labours in the barren region of the fiery law, for a reft to the confcience; and in the empty creation, for a reft to the heart. But after all, the confcience is ftill heavy laden with guilt, whether it has any lively feeling thereof, or not; and the heart is ftill under a load of unfatisfied defires. So neither the one, nor the other, can find reft indeed. This is the natural cafe of all men. And to fouls thus labouring and laden, Jefus Chrift calls, that they may come to him, and he will give them reft: namely, a reft for their confcience, under the covert of his blood; and a reft to their hearts, in the enjoyment of God thro' him. To this interpretation we are led by the ftile of the fcripture, the phrafeology of the holy Ghoft, both in the Old and New Teftament, the which may be viewed in the following texts compared, to wit, Ecclef. x. 15. Heb. ii. 13. Ifa. lv. 2. and i, 3, 4, 2 Tim. iii. 6, 7.
Finally, as for the willingness which you are afraid you are defective in, furely, in all other cafes, he that faith, Whosoever will, let him take fuch a thing, will according to the common fenfe and underftanding of fuch words among mankind, be reckoned to offer that thing unto all, and to exclude none from it; however it may be an intimation, that it is not to be forced on any. Why then should this manner of speech, Rev. xxii. 17. be thought to limit the gospel offer to a certain set of men?
Wherefore we conclude, that Chrift lays no bar in the way of any of you do not ye put bars in your own way, and then complain ye cannot get over them. For, according to the holy fcripture, it is infallible truth, that Chrift is offered to you, and
every one of you, in particular: believe it, elfe ye make God a lyar, 1 John v. 10.
III. Faith of our Right to Chrift.
Furthermore, you must believe, that Jefus Chrift is the Saviour of the world, and your Saviour in particular by his Father's appointment, and his own offer; and that, by the fame appointment and offer, his righteousness, the condition of the covenant, and eternal life, the promise of the covenant, are yours; yours (I mean not, in poffeffion, but) in right thereto; fo far as that you may lawfully and warrantably take poffeffion of the fame, and ufe them as your own, to all intents and purposes of falvation, John iv. 42. We know that this is indeed the Chrift, the Saviour of the world. 2 Sam. xxii. 3. and Luke i. 47. my Saviour. Do not think this too much for you: it is no more than what is neceffary to faving faith in Chrift. If you believe only, in the general, that Chrift is the Saviour of the world, but believe not that he is your Saviour, in particular; what do you believe more than devils do? They believe him to be Jefus a Saviour, Mark i. 24. If you would go beyond them, you must believe he is your Saviour; and confequently, that his righteousness and falvation are yours, in the fenfe before opened: for where Chrift is given, with him are freely given all things. And pray confider, how can ye take him or receive him as your Saviour, if he is not yours indeed? A man may fraudulently take poffeffion of what he doth not believe to be his by right: but no man can fairly and honeftly claim and take poffeffion of what he doth not believe to be his own, Certainly, God must first give Chrift to us, before we can receive him: for a man receiveth nothing, except it be given him from heaven, John iii. 27. Giving on God's part and receiving on ours, here are correlates: and the former is the foundati
on of the latter. Now, God's gift is fufficient to make a thing ours. Therefore believe firmly, that Chrift is your Saviour in particular; that his righteoufnefs is yours, and eternal life yours."
QUEST. But how can I, a poor finner, by nature under the curfe, believe that Chrift is my Saviour, that his righteoufnefs, and eternal life, are mine? ANs. You may firmly believe it, because you have the word and teftimony of the eternal God upon it in his holy gofpel. What is the gofpel, which the apoftles were fent in the name of God, to teftify? The Apostle John declares it, 1 John iv. 14. We teftify, that the Father fent the Son to be the Saviour of the world. Is not Jefus Chrift then, by office, whatever he is in the event, Saviour of the world? and if he is fo, and you are none of that world of mankind, is he not therefore your Saviour? Why then will you not believe it? God fet the fun in the heavens, to be a light to the world: and do not you therefore judge, that you have a right to the light of that fun, as well as the reft of mankind; and accordingly ufe it freely, to work or read by it, as your own by God's free gift? Jefus Chrift alfo is the light of the world, John viii. 12. given for a light to the Gentiles, Ifa. xlix. 6. and faith appropriates him, faying, The Lord is my light, and my falvation, Pfal. xxvi. 1. Now, you are a member of thefe focieties, to wit, the world, and the Gentiles: therefore he is your light, that is, given for a light to you. Will you take Chrift's own word upon it? You have it, John vi. 32. My Father giveth you the true bread from heaven. If your neighbour give you bread, you will reckon his gift thereof fufficient to make it yours: and fo eat of it freely as your own. If your prince fhall give you a houfe or land, which he hath an unquestionable right to difpofe of, you would reckon them truly yours by his gift; and would freely go and dwell in that
house, and poffefs that land, as your own. How is it then, that when the Father gives you his Christ, yet you will not believe that he is yours, nor take poffeffion of him as your own? Why, the truth of the matter lies here: you believe your neighbour, you believe your prince; but you believe not your God, in his holy gofpel, but make him a lyar, not believing the record that God gave of his Son, 1 John v. 10. But whether you will believe it or not, it is a truth, that Chrift is your Saviour: and if you will not believe it now, to your falvation, you will undoubtedly fee your mistake hereafter; when perishing, you will be convinced that you perish, not because you had not a Saviour, but because you neglected to make use of him.
In like manner, the righteousness of Chrift is yours, namely, that which he fulfilled as the condition of the covenant. It is yours by heaven's gift, being given you with himself; and therefore it is called the gift of righteousness, Rom. v. 17: It is a testamentary gift, made over to you in Chrift's teftament, wherein finners of mankind, without exception, are the legatees, as hath been already cleared. Eternal life is another fuch gift or legacy: fo it is yours too. And you have the record, testimony or witnefs, of God himself upon it, that it is given you, I John v. 11. And this is the record that God hath given to us eternal life; and this life is in his Son. Is not God's own record a fufficient ground for believing? will you venture to mifbelieve it on any pretence whatsoever? Here you have that record, namely, that God hath given to us eternal life. It may be you will imagine, that it relates only to actual believers in Chrift, or at moft to the elect; and ufe that for a defence of your unbelief. But, I pray you, confider it is the ground and warrant for all to believe on Chrift, and to lay hold on eternal life in him; being the witness of God, which he hath
teftified of his Son, to be received by all to whom the gofpel comes, verfe 9. but that God hath given eternal life to a certain felect fet of men, can never, in reafon, be deemed to be a warrant for all men to believe. Moreover, the great fin of unbelief lies in not believing this record: but it doth not lie in not believing that God hath given eternal life to actual believers, or to the elect; for the moft defperate unbelievers believe that, infomuch that their belief of it adds to their torment: but it lies in their not believing that to mankind-finners, and to themselves in particular, God hath given eternal life. This is what flies in the face of the gospel of God, which is the proclaimed deed of the gift and grant of Chrift and all his benefits, to finners of mankind, declaring the grant thereof to be made them, and calling them to take poffeffion of the fame as their own, Ifa. ix. 6. Unto us a child is born, (the word fignifies prefented born, as to his relations having a particular interest in him; as Machir's children were prefented to Jofeph, and laid on his knees, Gen. 1. 23. and Ruth's fon to Naomi, Ruth iv. 17.), unto us a fon is given. John iii. 16. God fo loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him, should not perish, but have everlasting life. I Cor. i. 30. Chrift Jefus, who of God is made unto us (namely, by legal deftination) wifdam, righteousness, fanctification, and redemption.
And thus you fee you have an infallible ground for this act of faith, namely, the teftimony of God that cannot lie. Wherefore, as ever you would be united to Christ, and so instated in the covenant, believe firmly that Chrift is yours, his righteoufnefs yours, and eternal life in him yours.
This is a more close application of faith than the former, and arifeth from it; for thus one believeth the efficacy of the divine appointment, and of the gofpel offer. If God appoints Christ a Saviour to you,