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livering us from a state of nature, and bring- llavery of sin and Satan, into the kingdom ing us into a state of grace, but our hearts of his dear Son, A&s xxvi. 18. is by workshould swell with the praises of God, and ing wonderfully upon their wills, and we should, with thankful hearts, in fince- powerfully inclining them to yield obedirity fing a song of praile unto his name; ence to the goípel of Jesus Christ, and to such sense should we have of the match. give up themselves thereunto: But ye have lessness of that unspeakable mercy, as we obeyed that form of doctrine. See Pial.cx. are taught by the apostle's saying, God be VIII. It is not a bare profession of lubthanked, when he is mentioning this mercy.jection and obedience to the gospel, that
IV. A gracious soul that has ever tatted will do the turn, but it must be real, inof the sweetness of the work of God in his ward, hearty, and sincere; ye have obeyed cwn soul, will be uufeignedly glad at the from the heart. The heart it is which work of God in others; the conversion of God calleth for. cthers will be laid hold on by them, as an IX. Where-ever the gospel of Jesus occasion whereupon to magnify and extol Christ is kindly, heartily, and fincerely the name of the Lord, especially if they welcomed and embraced, it will not be be ministers, whose work it is to draw halved, or any way divided, but wholly folks in to Chrift: therefore, when Paul accepted of, as all necessary, useful, and is mentioning this, he cannot but cry out, desirable ; the whole draught, form, and God be thanked.
plot of it, will be sweet to a fincere foul, V. It is profitable now and then to be and heartily submited unto, nothing in it calling to mind the black and doleful state will be balked, or waved, it will be found of nature which sometimes we were in, and so well ordered in all things : Ye have out of which we are now delivered thro' obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine ; free grace, that the unspeakable riches of not this or that picce of it, but the whole his grace may never grow little bulked in draught and platform of it. our estimation, and that our souls may be X. Where ever the gospel is kindly enthe more elevated, and made willing chear- tertained: it imprinteth a stamp of itself fully to lng a song of praise to him who on the soul, so that a true believer has a is worthy; God be thanked, that ye were foul resembling the draught of the gospel, the servants of sin; but ye have obeyed, &c.
have obeyed, &c. cut out, as it were, according to the goVI. When we call to mind the wonder-spel, having a lively image and picture of ful change that is made in us, we ought the frame of the gospel upon it, and, as it to look beyond ourselves, as having no were, caften into the mould of the gospel; hand therein, being dead in fins and tref- there is a metaphor here from a fiamp passes, till free love breathed upon us; and leaving a vive representation and resemstill runing away from God and all good, blance of itself upon wax or any soft maitill irresistible grace drew us back; and look ter : that form of doctrine (or stamp of to God as the prime and principal agent, doctrine) which was delivered to you; or the only worker of the work, and he on rather, which ye were delivered up unto. Jy who is worthy of all the praise : God XI. Though many true believers do in be thanked, leads them up to him as the many things look often unlike the gospel, main worker.
and come short of that comely picture, VII. The way how God, by his most and draught or image which they fhould powerful grace, bege:eth a soul to him- carry about with them; yet there is none self, and worketh this real change in their who have sincerely closed with Christ in state and condition, bringing them out of the gospel, but in some measure or degree darkness into light, and from under the the image of the gospel is drawn on their
hearts: all who have obeyed the form of gagements they took on them, hould lay doctrine, have been delivered up to it; you strong bonds upon them to study holiness bave obeyed from the heart the form of constantly, that they may daily look more doctrine to which ye were delivered up. and more like unto that stamp of divine
XII. The best way of obeying, fub- doctrine in the gospel : This is the apostle's micing unto, and closing with the design, argument pressing them to holiness
, being frame, and draught of the gospel, is, to made free from fin, ye became servants of give up ourselves thereunto, to receive the righteousness. impresion thereof, and to have every draught drawn upon our souls, that so our VERSE 19. I speak after the manner of hearts may answer every line thereof: ye men, because of the infirmity of your flesh: obeyed, says he, that form of doctrine, when for as ye have yielded your members ferje delivered up yourselves unto it, to receive vants to uncleanness and to iniquity, unthe inpresfion thereof, as it were.
to iniquity; even jo now yield your memXIII. This hearty fubiniting, accepting, bers servants to righteousness, unto hoembracing, and according with the gospel, linefs. is the only way of wining to freedom from under the tyranny, oppression and slavery Seventh argument is here ser down of fin; and only such as have this stamp of to this purpose, It is all equity and the gospel upon their hearts, have the realon that you should be as diligent, painftamp ani impression of the old man of sin ful and zealous fervants for righteousness fo obliterated, as that it shall not be so and holiness, now, after you have change legible: being then made free from fin. ed masters, as you were before for un
XIV. Believers in closing with Christ, cleannels and inquity. And this argument give up themselves to a new master, and te 1. ushereth in with a kind of apology take new work in hand, carrying a new for his using of such similitudes; I speak image and superscriprion upon their hearts, after the manner of men, because of the ineven the image of holiness, and of the firmity of your flesh; that is, I make use of do&trine of the gospel; and whoever have those homely and cbvious fimilitudes, that fincerely welcomed the gospel of Christ, you may be the more able to take up are now designing righteousness, and mak what I say, and see the equity of what is ing that their trade and constant work: desired and pressed; for you are so carnal, Je became servants of rightevusness. that you cannot easily perceive and take
XV. Before any can fincerely aim at up this, if it be not laid out before you in boliness, and carry themselves as fervants this homely manner, and not in such a of righteousness, their hearts and hands fpiritual and sublime manner suiting the must first be loosed from their old service purpose. 2. He illustrareth it by clearing and employment, and they must be loosed the two states, and comparing them togefrom the obligation of their old master; ther; and shewing, what they did under so that whoever is not trading after righte: the old state, and what, in equity, they ousness, is still under the fetters of sin, none should do now: And (1.) says he, Your can be serving both : being made free from members and faculties were servants unto fin, then ye became the servants of righte- uncleanness and iniquity before, as devotvusness.
ed to that service; but now your members XVI. The obligation that lyeth upon are servants of righteousness, devoted therebelievers, by their closing with Christ in to. (2.) You yielded your members unto the gospel, and the vows and resolutions iniquiry, you liited them, and had them they took upon them, and the new en ready at a call for that work; and now you
should fist them, and have them in promp- | kinds of fin than others; yet all who are ness for holiness. (3.) As you yielded in nature, have a pature withia them prone your members servants to such work be- to all sorts of fin and wickedness, and memfore, that was but filthiness and fin, or bers ready to run about every evil course, transgression of the holy law of God; when temptation setech on: and tho' the should you not much more yield your mem- devil think fit to employ some more in bers unto the work of sanctification and one piece of service, and others more in holiness?
another; yet their foul and body is given OBSERVATIONS.
up and devoted to sin, and nothing but sin,
and the vileft fort of fin: ye yielded your 1. Though holy and heavenly truths members servants to uncleanness and to inishould not be handled in an unseemly scur- quity; that is, all sort of sin. rile manner, rendering the same contemp- VI. Believers being now devoted, soul tible unto hearers; yet they should be and body, unto the works of God, and 10 handled and held forth in such a cleanly, do what is well-pleasing in his eyes, ought homely manner, as may be most taking to give all diligence in their service of with, and best understood by the hearers; righteousness and holiness, and to promo:e and so sometimes it is best to forbear such in that, and further that work what they a high, soaring, spiritual, suitable manner can: yield your members fervants to riguteof exprefling truths, and chuse a way more ousness unto holiness. after the manner of men; I speak after the VII. A back-look which a believer may manner of men, says Paul: See John iii. 1 2. have unto their activity and diligence in
II. So far out of frame may a people be runing the ways and commandments of for hearing the sacred truths of God laid the flesh, in the time that they were living forth in a manner suitable to their nature; in black nature, should be improven for that, of neceflity, necessary truths must their encouragement to run the ways of be laid forth in a homely dress: 1 Speak | God's commandments, with, at lealt, no after the manner of men, because of the in- less alacrity, zeal, forwardness, constancy, firmity of your flish.
and unweariableness; it being a shame that III. In the state of nature, tho' some they fould be more flack and col3rife in may have more polished dispositions and the service of God than they were in the inclinations than others; yet all in nature service of fin and Satan : For as ye have are wholly devoted and given up to sin, yielded your members servants to uncleanness all the members of their body and the fa- and to iniquity, unto inquiry; even so now culties of their foul are as hired, bound yield your members servants to righteousness, fervants unto sin: ye have yielded your mem
unto poliness. bers servants of uncleanness, &c.
IV. As the whole man during his con- Verse 29. For when ye were the servants tinuance in the state of nature, can do no
of jin, ye were free from righteousness. thing but sin against God, his service being wholly given away to that exercise; so men N this verse the apostle answereth what use not to be idle in that service, but with he said, in the preceding verse, touchall alacrity, readiness and promptitude, ing their condition while they were lying They attend that work, and with all dili- in black nature; telling them, That while gence they run to those ways, and perform they were servants of sin, they were free from these works they are employed about ; ye righteousness; their minds and all were aligielded your members unto iniquity. enared from the way of righteousness, and V. Tho' some are more addicted to all'they walked as such as had nothing to do
with that exercise, and as if they had a VERSES 21. 22. What fruit had ye
then manumittimus from the Lord to do what in those things, whereof ye are now amischief they pleased, they would not be famed? for the end of those things is bound with the yoke, and did nothing death. righteous at all. And in this he pointeth But now being made free from fin, ard beat an eighth argument, to this purpose; It come servants to God, ye have your fruit is a shame that you should delight to be unto holiness, and the end everlasting life. back to that condition, wherein you could do nothing but sin; and a shame you should Hese verses contain the apostle's two not now be doubling your diligence in ho- Jast arguments whereby he presseth liness, seeing the time was wherein you them to holiness; as ninthly, You cannot, had no medling with it.
for your part, tell any advantage, which
you either have, or can reap, by your folOBSERVATIONS.
lowing a course and trade of lin: and he 1. However unregenerate persons may useh three expressions to set forth the fad do many things upon the matter right, and effects and fruitlefsness of the course of sin; may walk unblameably; yet they are void as 1. What fruit had ye then in the of all true christian righteousness, and things? He puts this question home to cone never under the bonds and obliga- their own consciences, the more to bear tions of righteousness and holiness, but home fome conviction upon them, Can ye walk as builocks unaccustomed to the yoke: now, for your heart, make any account of they evere free from righteousness.
the good ye have reaped by fin? 2. WhereII. Tho' unregenerare persons be not of ye are now ashamed; ye are so far from walking as under the iye of righteousness, being able to fhow any good fruit or adand be refusing to come under that ealy vantage you have had by your sinful courses, yoke, and will not have that bridle on that on the contrary, the summa totalis of their jars; yet they are not at perfect li. your reckoning, will be shame and confuberry, but rather the greater slaves, hav- fion of face; you are now ashamed of those ing the heavy yoke of in and corruption ways, and your conscience is checking you lying upon their necks, and these bonds for them, and is it fit that ye should be made itrong: while they were free from driving again that unprofitable, yea, that righteousness, they became the fervants hameful trade? 3. For the end of those of fin.
things is death; this will be the end and Ill. The consideration of the woful upshot of following a course of fin, not flavery that believers orce were in, when only thame here, but death hereafter; and unregenerated, how they could do nothing is it not belt then to forbear, and turn your but sin again it God, and run at random, as back upon that way of fin ? a young heifer, free of all bonds of righte- The lait argument is set down), verse 22. culness; should cause believers loath fuch and it is taken from the rich and unspeaka life, ard study so much the more to walk able advantage which will follow upon now, as having devoted and given up their walking in a state of friendship and themselves unto righteousness, and having reconciliation with God, in a state of freethat bridle in their jaws: This is the force dom from fin, and subjection to God; beof the apostle's argument to press them ing made free from fin, says he, and become to holiness, That while they were the servants to God, 1. Ye have your fruit unto servants of fin, they were free from righte-heliness; that is, Ye have this advantage. oufness.
thereby,, on this side of time, even hoi
ness, fan&ification, and further conformity | Thame, when the deceitfulness thereof is unto the image of Christ: and 2. I he end found out, and the danger it bringech the everlasting life; the upshot of all will be a foul into is discovered, and the conscience. lasting life of communion with God in made to see how loathsome it is in God's glory.
eyes, and how abominable it maketh the OBSERVATIONS.
committer: whereof ye are now ashamed.
V. Whatever carnal and worldly ad1. It were good that people were caft- | vantage fin bath brought to any, yet ing up their accounts, and viewing what when the day cometh that the contcierce income they have by following the trade shall be awakened, and fore stinged for of fin, and seriously puring their consci-fin, so that it shall blush and be alhamed ences to a narrow search and examination, that ever it followed sin and iniquity, all that they may win to discover the absolute that profit shall soon evanith and disappear; fruitlessness and naughtiness of fm: The the present frame that thall be felt wil apostle tays it home to them here, and weigh all that seeming advantage: Ibat puts them to the trial, by saying, What profit have ye in these things, wbereof now fruit have ye in those things? he will have you are ashamed. them feting to, to cast up their accounts. VI. The confideration of the present
II. Howbeit the devil promisesh fair trouble and vexation of mind that believunto finners, to follow his ways, and de. ers have, when they think of their former Juded fouls imagine infinite profit and ad- sinful courses, should be a loud warning to vantage shall redound to them by hearken- them to forbear that hurtsome trade, and ing unto Satan's delusions and suggestions, follow it no more: he dissuadeth from and following a constam trade of lin; yet following a course of fin, by telling them, the fumma totalis of their advantage will that they were already ashamed of their be foon caften up, and in end all their former courses. A burnt child should fear reckoning will jurn to nothing: The the fire. Whereof ye. are now ashamed. question is propounded, and left unanswer. VII. How little foever sin be feared, ed, because it was unanswerable; What yet it will prove deadly ere all be done; fruit have ye then in those things? how pleasant and delightlome the ways
III. Would believers serioully ponder thereof prove at present, yet they lead and consider how small the advantage to certain destruction, and to unavoidable was, which they had hitherto reaped, for death; the end, fruit and upshot of the all their pains and fore travel in following things is death. and pursuing the ways of sin and iniquity; VIII. Believers should ever be taking they would not take fuch pleasure in fin a look of the bitter fruits of fin, and se as often-times they do, but would scar to riously considering what the certain resul follow such Christlefs and unprofitable of a course of fin will prove to be, ever courses any more, having seen and tasted shame here, and perpetual shame and dear of the bitter disappointment of those lies, hereafter, that thereby they may kee which fometime they held fast in their their hands free of that deadly poison right hand: This is the apostle's argument, for this cause he tells them, that the en What fruit then have ye in those things of these things is death.
IV. Whatever pleasure and delight people take in fin, when it is fairded over
From Verse 22d OBSERVE, with the devil's falie colours, and they I. It is useful and necessary for belie rickled with the present acting thereof; ers oftentimes to be taking a view of the yet in the end it thall prove matter of great state and condition thro' grace, and to