Abbildungen der Seite

fo suitable to the finner's case, so transcendently excellent, as that the soul is determined to embrace him for all, Matth. xiii, 45. 46. It finks the value of all created things, and makes finful lufts to appear as husks for swine, in comparison of the bread of life.

(8.) Those who, whatever light they have got, yet there has been no heat with it, to melt down the heart and will into a pliableness to the will of God, and the call of the goipel, Job xxiv. 13. Many come a great length in light, by the common operations of the Spi. rit, from whom the stony heart is never taken away, nor the power of it broken. Such was the case of Balaam, in whom the heart-eninity against God and holiness was still rampant, as appears from the history of him. Such also was the case of those mentioned Heb. vi. 4. c. The outer door is broken up by the force of a law ftorin, and fome common touches of the Spirit on their minds :' but the inner door reinains still shut. The outworks are taken, but the fort of the heart remains impregnable. Some one luft or other still has the throne in the heart.

(9.) Lastly, Those whose exercises have never ifsued in a kindly closing with Christ in the gospel-offer. O, it is lamentable to think how many a good work that seems once fairly begun is miserably marred. Some are still kept wavering and undeterniined, halting be. twixt God and Baal, light presling them forward, love to their lusts drawing them back, so that their time is like to go ere they come to a resolution what to do. Some, instead of closing with Christ, close with duties; but never come out of themselves to Christ, but like the spider entangled in her own web, perish. But true believers rejoice in Christ Jefus, and bave no confidence in the flefli, Phil. iii. 3. Some clole with Christ for justification, but never mind or fee a need to close with bim for sanctification.

USE II. of exhortation. Come away from the world lying in wickedness, unto Jesus Christ, and so comply

with the gospel-call. Come away, finners, unto him. For motives,

1. Consider what a fociety ye are called to come out of. See their character, Eph. ii. 12. Those that are without Christ, being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel, and, frangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope, and without God in the world. We are all natives of that fociety indeed; but it is a Godless, Cbristless society, which we have need to leave, and that timeously.

(1.) It is a finful society, a corrupt, unclean one, where there is nothing pure, Tit. i. 15. Better lie in a kennel with dogs, or in a hog-stye with swine, than with the world in wickedness. Their souls are like Job's body, boils and fores all over, that they have not a free finger to scrape themselves withal. The fociety of the unconverted are defiled in all their faculties, and so they can do nothing that is good and acceptable in God's sight. Their thoughts are polluted with va. nity or vileness, their words are abominable, for their throat is like an open fepulchre; their actions, their very civil actions, are sinful, Prov. xxi. 4. and their religious ones are fo too, Prov. xv. 8.

(2.) It is a moft miserable fociety, Rev, iii. 17. Othe wretched state of the unconverted world! what tongue can tell their misery, who are without Christ, and without God in the world? They are the butt of God's indignation, and fet for a mark to the arrow's of his wrath, Pfal, vii. 12. 13. They are those that are under God's curse; their state is a prison, out of which those that die in it are carried to the prison of hell: and there is no more difference betwixt thens and the damned, than betwixt a dry faggot lying before the fire ready tu bę cast in, and the faggot that is in it already. A black cloud of wrath hangs over their heads at alle times, ready to break upon them, John iii. 36.

How can it be otherwise, fince it is a society which Satan is the head of, 2 Cor. iv. 4. ruled and governed

A a ?

be safe,' there is a Zo

; Consider w

by him, and with whom those that die in it must lodge for ever?

Now, sinners, have ye not been long enough there already ? May I not say, as Deut. i. 6. Ye have dwelt long enough in this mount. O come away from Leba. non, Cant. iv, 8. Leave the world of the ungodly, that are to be swept away with the flood of wrath, and come into the ark. Turn your back on that Sodom, which is to be overthrown in its own filthiness; haste and flee for your life; there is a Zoar to fee in: to, where ye may be safe.

2. Consider what a society ye are called to. This calling is a high calling, Phil. iii. 14. It is a holy and happy society. All the saints, the excellent ones of the earth, are of it, the glorified saints, the holy angels, and God in Christ is the head of it, Heb. xii. 22. 23; 24. O refufe not that high calling,

If ye will come away, ye shall enjoy the privileges of this society as members thereof, Eph. ii. 19. Ye shall be inheritors of glory, heirs of God, and joint heirs with Christ : not only faved from wrath, but made happy here in the favour of God, and complete: ly blessed in the full enjoyment of God to all eternity,

3. Lastly, Consider who calleth you. It is the voice of a man that ye hear, but the word of the call is the Lord's own word; and therefore I say, See that ye refuse not him that speaketh, Heb, xii. 25. Our Lord Jesus has got the grant of the kingdom from the Father; and he minds to raise it up on the ruins of Satan's kingdom. And therefore he comes to the world lying in wickedness, to call out from among them whom he may make partakers of his glory. And therefore I say to you, Arise, for the Master Culleth youq And since it is fo, it is evident, . (1.) Ye may come; there is an open door for you, none of you all are excluded, If. lv. i. The fallen an. gels have not that privilege, and therefore they grudge ye should have it, and they will do what they can ta kcep you from the benefit of it.

(2.) Ye shall not be rejected, nor get the door cast s in your teeth, John vi. 37. Your being called en.

fures your welcome. Let not unbelief suggest such

jealousies, as that it is needless to come now, for ye I will not be accepted; for the market of free grace is

not yet over, and as long as the call is given you, ye may be sure of welcome. Indeed the day will come, that Christ will cease to call you; and then it will be needless to think of coming: but o come while the door is open. Strive to enter in at the strait gate : for many, I say unto you, will seek to enter in, and shall not be able. When once the master of the house is risen up, and hath shut to the door, and ye begin to stand without, and to knock at the door, saying, Lord, Lord, open unto us; and he shall answer and say unto you, I know you not whence you are, Luke xiii. 24. 25.

(3.) Lastly, If ye do not come, it is upon your peril, the peril of the Mediator's vengeance. Does he call yoụ, and will ye not come? Nay, you must come under the pain of the King's highest displeasure,

Matth. xxii. 7,

As for you that are called, fee that ye walk worthy of the vocation wherewith ye' are called, being holy in all manner of life and conversation,


of the Benefits of effectual Calling.

ROMANS viii. 30. -Whom he called, them he also justified; and whom he

justified, them he also glorified. TN this and the preceding verse is the golden chain I of salvation, consisting of five links. The first two lie out of the sinner's view, till they be brought to light by means of the third. The first is God's foreknowledge, or eternal free love and favour ta lome of mankind, laid on them from everlasting. The second is the predestination of these, eleciing them to everlasting life, and the means leading thereto. The third is the calling of the predestinated, calling them effectually, which is done in time, of which we have spoke before. There are other two that hang upon this. The fourth is the justification of the called, which may im. ply the whole of the relative change made upon them, both their justification and adoption ; for it is evident from ver. 29. that the apostle has a respect to adoption in this chain. I'he fifth is the glorifying of the justified, which may import the whole of the real change inade on the elect, namely, the sanctifying of them liere, and glorifying of them hereafter. For what is grace but glory in the bud, and glory but grace brought to perfection ? and therefore believers with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the fame image from glory to glory, even us by the Spirit of the Lord, 2 Cor. iii. 18. Thus effectual calling, as it rises from eternal love, so it makes the soul happy here and hereafter.

The text affords this doctrine, viz.

Doct. They that are effectually called do thereby par. take of great and glorious benefits and privileges, both in this life and the life to come.

Here I shall briefly fhew,

1. What are those benefits which they wl 10 are ef. fećtually called partake of in this life.

II. The benefits they partake of in the life to come. ļli. Apply.

I. I shall fhew what are those benefits vhich they that are effectually called partake of in this life.

first, There are three leading benefits which they partake of here. * 1. They are all juliaed. So says the text. As soon as ever the soul answers the call of the gospel, and comes to Christ, the man is brought out of a state of condemnation, and gets his absolviture, Rom. viii,

« ZurückWeiter »