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that they are savingly acquainted with it, whose temper and practice have undergone no change, whatever pretensions they may make to faith in the Redeemer, and confident assurance of their final falvation : for all the saved of the Lord are' expressly denominated' « God's workmanship, created'in “ Christ Jesus unto good works, which God « hath before ordained that they should 6 walk in them.” And it will remain an invariable truth, to the confusion of all vain boasting hypocrites, that " whom God did « foreknow, he also did predestinate to “ be conformed to the image of his Son, 5 that he might be the first-born among “ many brethren.” . :. But my chief business at present is with those who know by experience the grace of cur Lord Jesus Christ; having both tafted its sweetness, and felt the power of it in their own hearts. To such I shall address a few short exhortations, and then proceed to the service for which we are assembled.
11, Give glory to God for what you know of his grace ; "and humbly acknowledge that it was he, and he only, who opened your eyes, and turned you from darkness to light.--Who made you to differ from others ? -The proper answer to this question is to be found in the 4th chapter of this epistle, verse 6. “God, who at first “ commanded the light to shine out of “darkness, hath shined into your hearts, to ," give you the light of the knowledge of his « glory in the face of Jesus Christ.” Not unto yourselves then, not unto yourselves, but to his free distinguishing favour, is all the glory due.
2dly, Let this morning-dawn encourage you to hope for the perfect day. Chrift would never have emptied himfelf, and become poor, without the most abfolute afsurance, that some were to be enriched by him: and where he begins a good work, this may, and ought to be, considered as a certain pledge, that he will carry it forward to its full perfection ; for he who is 6 the author,” is also “ the finisher of his “ people's faith.” Rejoice, therefore, in hope of the glory of God.--And till you are brought to the pofleffion of it, be careful, in the
3d plaçe, To use all the means he hath appointed for obtaining larger measures of his grace, both in respect of knowledge and of influence. Among these means, the þoly facrament of our Lord's fupper holds the most distinguished rank, as it was instituted for this very purpose, to exhibit a sensible representation of the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, in becoming poor for our sake, that we through his poverty might be rich. Here we not only behold him in his lowest state of voluntary humiliation, evidently set forth as crucified before our eyes ; but likewise presenting to us, and by visible fymbols conferring upon us, all those unsearchable riches which he purchased with his blood, and secures by his intercession; which he actually poffefseth as the “ head of the church, which is “ his body;" and conveys, by his Spirit, to every member in due season, and measure, as their several necessities and circumstances require. Let us then approach the table of the Lord with faith, and love, and thankful praise ; and while we bless him for the grace he hath already made known to
us, let us pray for such further discoveries as may strengthen and comfort us in what remains of our journey through this wil. derness, till we arrive at those blessed abodes of perfect light, and love, and purity, where we shall see him as he is, without the intervention of ordinances ; and enjoy him fully, without interruption, and without end. Amen.
1 PÉTER i. 20, 21. Who verily was foreordained before the foun
dation of the world, but was manifest in these last times for you ; who by him do believe in God that raised him up from the dead, and gave him glory, that your faith and hope might be in God.
T VERY fabric mult partake of the U strength or weakness of its foundation. A house that is built upon the loose fand, will soon fall to the ground; nay, the higher it is raised, especially if the materials be weighty, the more sudden and ruinous will its fall be. It must therefore be of the last importance to the Christian, to be fully satisfied in his own mind, that the grounds of his faith and hope in God are fufficient to sustain all the weight he hath to lay upon them. The life of the soul is no trivial matter :
VOL: II. ☆