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Though it is lodged in the same heart with an ill neigh. bour, the remains of natural corruption; yet he keeps it that it do not die out, he preserves it as a spark of fire in the midst of the ocean.
3. He excites it and quickens it, to pursue and refist the flesh, Phil. ii. 13. Grace fometimes inay fall so very low in the soul, that it becomes like a spark hid under the ashes : yet the fanctifying Spirit blows it up again into a flame, Cant. iv. 16. As the tree in the winter divested of its leaves and verdure, when the warm sun returns in the spring, the fap driven to the root returns, and is diffused through the whole.
4. He strengthens it by new supplies, Il. xl. ult, so as the soul is enabled more and more to hold on the battle, and gets victories of the enemy, 2 Cor. xii. 9. 10. For grace is a child of heaven, which has all its nourishment and strength from the fame Spirit that gave it life. .
5. Lastly, At death, but not till then, he perfects it, Heb. xii. 23. Then the new man is brought to its perfect stature; Eph. iv, 13. Often may the soul be ready to say, One day I will perish by the hand of such a lust. But the Spirit of God will perfect the work he has begun. And when the walls of the leprous house are taken down, the leprofy shall be quite removed. From what has been said we may infer,
Inf. 1. The case of unfanctified sinners is a wretched case; they are lying with the lost world, in their filthiness, utterly unfit to serve God acceptably, or to have communion with him here or hereafter. For they are not sanctified, not separated, purified, nor prepared for God's service.
2. Behold the beauty of holiness, and fall in love. with it, and labour to attain it. The holy man is more excellent than his neighbour, as fet apart for God; Ifrael Mall dwell alone, and shall not be reckoned among the nations, because they are a holy people. It is the purity of the soul, it is God's image drawn on
fanctifiedh him her cod accepted, in their
the man, it is a newaefs of nature from heaven, and i like heaven. By it a man is a vessel fit for the Master's i use, honourably employed now, and most honourably hereafter.
3. See the way how ye may be made holy. The fire from your own hearth will not purge you; faithless vows, resolutions, and endeavours will not do it; If.l. ult. The Spirit of the Lord can only perform the work. O cry for the Spirit, wait on in ordinances for the blowing of the Spirit. Come to Christ by faith, that ye niay partake of his Spirit.
4. Sanctification is not the work of a day, but a work that must be in a continual progress. Sit noć down on any measure of grace attained. They that are converted still need the Spirit for their fanctificátion. Beware of grieving the Spirit, left the works be interrupted. Make no truce with the enemy, but pursue the lusts of the body of fin vigorously.
5. Lastly, See here that there are none so unholy: but they may be made holy. It is a work of grace, and grace is powerful to overcome the strongest lufts. It is a work of free grace, and therefore no vileness nór unworthinels of the creature, that is content to be made holy, can hinder it. This may lay the pride of fome, who think they deserve grace, and whose
hearts fret against the Lord, if grace be not given "them in an hour of temptation. Man's heart pervert
eth his way, and fretteth against the Lord. And this may encourage those who think the Lord will never look on them.
LASTLY, Let us conlider the means of sanctis fication. The outward means that the Spirit makes - use of in this work, and which have all their efficacy
from him, are, : 1. Ordinances, public, private, and secret, I. xii.
3. especially the word, and facraments thereto append. .ed, Eph. V. 26. And they that would be holy must
use these means of fanctification, whereby th: Spirit begins and carries on the work.
2. Providences; smiling and favourable difpenfa: tions have a tendency that way, Rom. ii. 4. but especially afilictions are means which the Spirit makes use of for this end, ll. xxvii. 9. By this shall the iniquity of Jacob be purged, and this is all the fruit to take away bis fin.
I shall now shut up this subject with a few infe. Tences, besides those I drew under the former heads.
Inf. 1. Those who are unrenewed are unsanctified. Where there is no change of heart and life, there is no grace, 2 Cor. v. 17. Ah! how many live as they were born, and are like to die as they live? They have no changes, but from evil to evil: no change from fin to holiness, and yet are unconcerned with their uorenewed state, sleeping on till they sleep the sleep of death.
2. A partial change is not sanctification. Those who are changed, but not in the whole man, are not truly sanctified, but are yet in their natural pollution. Sanctification is not a new head full of knowledge, with the old heart and life; nor is it a new life, with the old heart and nature. But it is a change that goes through the whole foul and body, which must needs be followed with a new life, 2 Cor. v. 17.
3. True fanctification puts work in the hand of the fanctified, that will fill their hands while they live. Dying to fin, and living to righteousness, are works that will fill up every ininute we have in the world.
4. Let none be so foolish as to sit down contented without sanctification, but ftudy holiness as ever ye would see heaven. We want a title to heaven, we must get that in justification and adoption : we want a meetness for heaven, and we must get that in fanctification. The sanctifed are elected, and shall be glorified, i Pet. i. 2. 4. And they that live and die ud. fanctified, shall never fee heaven, Heb. xii. 14. For without holiness no man Malt see the Lord.
5. Lastly, As ever ye would be holy, attend and improve the means of grace. Let not your afflictions drive you from God, neither be stupid under them, but fall in with the design of providence in them, for your fanctification,
Union with Christ the only way to Sanctifica
. 1 CORINTHIANS I, 30. But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who-is made unto us
-sanctification. ' TT HE world in its greatest darkness was not in
I fenfible that man's nature was corrupted, that they needed somewhat wherewith they might please God, attain to happiness, and repair the wound which they understood their naturę had got. And although that Jews and Gentiles had different devices whereby they thought this spight be obtained, yet all agreed i that it beloved them to go into themselves for it, and
to draw something out of the ruins of their natural s powers wherewith to help themselves, thereby disco
yering they did not sufficiently understand the depth of the corruption of human nature. And this principle is so agreeable to corrupt reason, that God's device to bring about man's falvation from fin and mi. sery in and by another, to wit Chrift, was to the Jews a stumbling-block, and to the Greeks foolishness, ver. 2 3. And if we found to the bottom, it is the lame at this day to the unregenerate part of the Christian world.
In the text we have the suin of God's device for the salvation of finners, and it centres in Jesus Christ who was crucified. We may take up the text and it in these two things,
1. That the whole of man's salvation shall be from Christ. God has made or constituted him the Foungain of all salvation, from whom it muit be conveyed to all that shall partake of it. As Paaraoh made los feph ruler over Egypt, and when the familhed people cried to him for bread, he bade them go to Joseph, Gen. xli. 55.; fo God has dealt with the Mediator, and tells us by the gospel, Pfal. Isxxix. 24. My faithfulness and my mercy Mall be with him: and in my, nanie Thall his horn be exalted. If we look into the ruins of the fall, we may take them up under four heads, an, swerable to which there are remedies in Chrift.
(1.) Man is ignorant naturally of the way to true happiness: he has loft God, and knows not how to find him again. Falling into the hands of Satan, he loft his two eyes, like Samson ; gropes for the way of happiness, but cannot find it, like the Sodomitės at Lot's door. Some remains of knowledge found in the ruins of the fall were improved in the world, by study, observation of the works of God, and in fome by external revelation, which yet the natural darkness of the mind did pervert. And these notions thus improved they called wisdom. But the way of happiness by works, the only way naturally known þy Adam, being blocked up by his fall, it was impos, fible for them by their wisdom to fall on the other way, unless we should say that fallen man's natural knowledge could reach farther than his natural knowJedge when it was whole and entire before the fall,
So man's wisdom is his folly. . For remedy of this, Christ is made wisdom. The
treasures of wisdom and knowledge were lodged in him, Col. ij. 3. and he is constituted the grand Teacher of all that mind for eternal happiness. Therefore the philofophers and rabbi's must lay by their books as infufficient to point them the way to happiness, and study that body of divinity, Jesus Christ, in wbom the fulness of the Godhead dwelleth bodily. The wise men of the world must renounce confidence in their natural abilities, draw a black score over all their attainments in their Christless state, and sit down at Christ's feet, as knowing nothing, and learn of him: and those of the hallowest capacities giving up them.
thus improved works, the only his fall, it was e other