Immagini della pagina
PDF
ePub

righteous, as God is righteous, so no farther is he like God, or justifiable ; for in whatsoever he derogates from the works of that faith, which is held in a pure conscience, he is no longer righteous or justified, but under condemnation as a transgreffor, or disobedient person to the righteous commandment; and if any would obtain the true state of justification, let them circumspectly observe the holy guidings and instructions of that unction, to which the apostle recommended the ancient churches, that thereby they may be led out of all ungodliness, into truth and holiness ; so shall they find acceptance with the Lord, who has determined never to justify the wicked.]

[ocr errors]

Refuted from right reason. 1. Because it is impossible for God to justify that which is both opposite and destructive to the purity of his own nature, as this doctrine necessarily obliges him to do, in accepting the wicked, as not such, from the imputation of another's righteousness.

2. Since man was justified before God, whilst in his native innocency, and never condemned tili he had erred from that pure state; he never can be justified, whilst in the frequent commission of that for which the condemnation came; therefore, to be justified, his redemption must be as entire as his fall,

3. Because sin came not by imputation, but actual transgression ; for God did not condemn his creature for what he did not, but what he did ; therefore must the righteousness be as personal for acceptance, otherwise these two things will necessarily follow: first, that he may be actually a sinner, and yet not under the curse. Secondly, that the power of the first Adam to death, was more prevalent than the power of the second Adam unto life.

4. It is therefore contrary to sound reason, that if actual sinning brought death and condemnation, any thing besides actual obedience unto righteousness, thould bring life and justification ; for death and life,

con

condemnation and justification, being vastly opposite, no man can be actually dead and imputatively alive ; therefore this doctrine, so much contended for, carries this grofs absurdity with it, that a man may be actually linful, yet imputatively righteous; actually judged and condemned, yet imputatively justified and glorified. In short, he may be actually damned, and yet imputatively saved; otherwise it must be acknowledged, that obedience to justification ought to be as personally extensive, as was disobedience to condemnation : in which real, not imputative sense, those various terms of fanctification, righteousness, resurrection, life, redemption, justification, &c. are most infallibly to be understood.

5. Nor are those words, impute, imputed, imputeth, imputing, used in scripture by way of opposition to that which is actual and inherent, as the affertors of an imputative righteousness do by their doctrine plainly intimate ; but so much the contrary, as that they are never mentioned, but to express men really and personally to be that which is imputed to them, whether as guilty, as remitted, or as righteous : for instance : « What man foever of the house of Israel, " that killeth an ox, and bringeth it not to the door w of the tabernacle, to offer unto the Lord, blood « shall be imputed unto that man,'” or charged upon him as guilty thereof. « And Shimei said unto the

king, let not my lord impute iniquity unto me, for " thy servant doth know that I have finned.”

6. “ But sin is not imputed where there is no law.!” From whence it is apparent that there could be no imputation, or charging of guilt upon any, but such as really were guilty. Next, it is used about remifsion : « Blessed is the man unto whom the Lord im“ puteth not iniquity; “” or, as the foregoing words have it, “ whose transgression is forgiven.” Where the non-imputation doth not argue a non-reality of

[ocr errors]

* Lev. xvii. 4. & 2 Sam. xix. 18, 19, 20. ! Rom. v. 13.

ҳҳxii, 2.

* Psal.

sin, but the reality of God's pardon ; for otherwise there would be nothing to forgive, nor yet a real pardon, but only imputative, which, according to the sense of this doctrine, I call imaginary. Again, “God “ was in Christ reconciling the world unto himself,

not iinputing their trespasies unto them.” Where also non-imputation, being a real discharge for actual trespaffes, argues an imputation, by the reason of contraries, to be a real charging of actual guilt. Lastly, it is used in relation to righteousness, « Was “ not Abraham justified by works, when he offered “ Ifaac ? and by works was faith made perfect, and “ the scripture was fulfilled, which faith, Abraham « believed God, and it was imputed unto him for " righteousness.” By which we must not conceive, as do the dark imputarians of this age, that Abraham's offering personally was not a justifying rightcousness, but that God was pleased to account it fo; since God never accounts a thing that which it is not; nor was there any imputation of another's righteoufness to Abraham, but on the contrary, his personal obedience was the ground of that just imputation; and therefore, that any should be justified from the imputation of another's righteousness, not inherent, or actually possessed by them, is both ridiculous and dangerous-Ridiculous, since it is to say a man is rich to the value of a thousand pounds, whilft he is not really or personally worth a groat, from the imputation of another, who has it all in his poffeffion. Dangerous, because it begets a confident persuasion in many people of their being justified, whilst in captivity to those lufts, whose reward is condemnation ; whence came that ufual saying amongst many professors of religion, that God looks not on them as they are

in themselves, but as they are in Chrift;' not confidering that none can be in Christ, who are not new creatures, which those cannot be reputed, who have

[merged small][merged small][ocr errors][ocr errors][merged small]

condemnation and justification, being vastly opposite, no man can be actually dead and imputatively alive; therefore this doctrine, so much contended for, carries this grofs absurdity with it, that a man may be actually sinful, yet imputatively righteous; actually judged and condemned, yet imputatively justified and glorified. In short, he may be actually damned, and yet imputatively saved; otherwise it must be acknowledged, that obedience to justification ought to be as personally extensive, as was disobedience to condemnation : in which real, not imputative sense, those various terms of sanctification, righteousness, resurrection, life, redemption, justification, &c. are most infallibly to be understood.

5. Nor are those words, impute, imputed, imputeth, imputing, used in scripture by way of opposition to that which is actual and inherent, as the affertors of an imputative righteousness do by their doctrine plainly intimate; but so much the contrary, as that they are never mentioned, but to express men really and personally to be that which is imputed to them, whether as guilty, as remitted, or as righteous : for instance: “ What man foever of the house of Israel, " that killeth an ox, and bringeth it not to the door " of the tabernacle, to offer unto the Lord, blood « shall be imputed unto that man,'” or charged upon him as guilty thereof. " And Shimei said unto the “ king, let not my lord impute iniquity unto me, for " thy servant doth know that I have sinned. "

6. “ But sin is not imputed where there is no law.' From whence it is apparent that there could be no imputation, or charging of guilt upon any, but such as really were guilty. Next, it is used about remission: “ Blessed is the man unto whom the Lord im“ puteth not iniquity ; " or, as the foregoing words have it, “ whose transgression is forgiven.” Where the non-imputation doth not argue a non-reality of

* Lev. xvii. 4. * 2 Sam. xix. 18, 19, 20. Rom. v. 13.

Ҳxxii, 2.

* Psal.

[ocr errors]

fin, but the reality of God's pardon; for otherwise there would be nothing to forgive, nor yet a real pardon, but only imputative, which, according to the sense of this doctrine, I call imaginary. Again, “God “ was in Christ reconciling the world unto himself, "not imputing their trespalles unto them.”” Where also non-imputation, being a real discharge for actual trespasses, argues an imputation, by the reason of contraries, to be a real charging of actual guilt. Lastly, it is used in relation to righteousness, “ Was

not Abraham justified by works, when he offered “ Isaac ? and by works was faith made perfect, and “ the scripture was fulfilled, which faith, Abraham « believed God, and it was imputed unto him for “ righteousness.” By which we must not conceive, as do the dark imputarians of this age, that Abraham's offering personally was not a justifying rightcousness, but that God was pleased to account it fo; since God never accounts a thing that which it is not; nor was there any imputation of another's righteousness to Abraham, but on the contrary, his personal obedience was the ground of that just imputation; and therefore, that any should be justified from the imputation of another's righteousness, not inherent, or actually possessed by them, is both ridiculous and dangerous-Ridiculous, since it is to say a man is rich to the value of a thousand pounds, whilft he is not really or personally worth a groat, from the imputation of another, who has it all in his poffeffion. Dangerous, because it begets a confident persuasion in many people of their being justified, whilst in captivity to those lusts, whose reward is condemnation; whence came that usual saying amongst many professors of religion, that God looks not on them as they are

in themselves, but as they are in Chrift;' not confidering that none can be in Christ, who are not new creatures, which those cannot be reputed, who have

[ocr errors][ocr errors][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small]
« IndietroContinua »