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to the Heathen Idolatry, which is the Volume reason of the caution which follows; XII. Little children, keepyourselves from Idols.
And this extraordinary efficacy of Prayer, we find promised in a more especial manner to the Elders of the Church, James 5. 14, 15. Is any fick among you let him call for the Elders of the Church, and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the Name of the Lord: And the prayer of faith' Mall Save the sick, and the Lord Jhall raise him up: and if he have committed finszthey shall be forgiven him.
In comparing of all these Texts, it seems plain, that both the Power of remitting and retaining sins, and the strange efficacy of Prayer, which were promised to the Apostles and firit Christians, had something miraculous and extraordinary in them, and were peculiar to the first Ages of the Church. I will not be peremptory in these things; but this seems to be the most genuine and realonable interpretation of these Texts.
Sixthly, And besides these which Sermon I have mentioned, there was likewise XII. a Power of inflicting Corporal Punishments and Diseases upon scandalous and obstinate Christians; which
is in Scripture call?d, a delivering men - up to Satan, for the destroying or tor
menting of their bodies, that their
this kind were those Diseases which = befell the Corinthians, for their disor
derly and irregular carriage at the Sacrament, of which the Apostle speaks, 1 Cor. 11. 30. For this cause many are weak and sickly among you,
and many sleep; that is, to some of ļ them these Distempers proved morital. And we find that this Power s did in some cases extend to the in, flicting of sudden and present death;
as in the case of Ananinis and Sap
phira. And indeed considering that ☆ Christianity was at first destitute
of any countenarice from the Ci
vil Power, some such Power as this 1 was necessary, to maintain the Au. thority of the Apostles against
me the Contuinacious and DisobediXII.
And then, lastly, there was the Power of casting out Devils in the name of Christ, which was common to the meanest Christian, and continued in the Church a long time after most of the other Gifts were ceased, as Tertullian, Minucius Felix, and Arnobius, do most expreily testifie concerning their
'Thus you see that there were almost all imaginable kinds of miraculous Powers conferred upon the Apostles and first Christians, to give the greater Eitablishinent and Confirmation to the Christian Doctrine.
All the reflection I shall make upon what hath been said, shall be this. Since our Religion comes down to us confirmed by such miraculous Powers, we ought to take the more earneft heed to it, to believe
it more stedfastly, and to practice it more carefully in our lives. For Sermon if the word spoken by Angels was sted- XII. fast, and every transgression and difobedience received a just recompence of · reward; How fball we escape, if we neg
lect so great salvation?