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may break forth in the life, Jam. i. 14. They make way for gross fins, as the feed grows up into a tree that brings forth its natural fruit at length. . 4. They are the fit oppofers of every good motion, Gal. v. 17. So that there is never a good impreffion made upon, nor motion in the heart, but among these lufts it finds a peculiar opposite to it, one fit to engage against it, by a peculiar malignity in it. And so it is found in the godly, that as they have grace for grace in Chrift, so they have corruption for grace in the unrenewed part; still some one lineament of Satan's image to set against ano. ther of God's image.
And now these lufts have their lustings and stirrings, a view of which niuft be very humbling. For conüder, : /, The innumerable occasions of them; at every blink of the eye, opening of the ear, or imagination of the heart, we are in hazard of them. The sparks of temptation are continually flying about us ; how can we be safe, while we have these as gunpowder about us?
2dly, How suddenly they will flee through the heart, like a stitch in the side, or an arrow out of a bow ? A thought, a wish, is foon brought forth.
3dly, How frequent are they? when are we free of them ? when is it that the crooked leg can move, and not halt?
Lastly, How little are these things noticed ? That hellith steam arising from a corrupt nature, being so much within doors, is little regarded, but extremely blackens the soul.
Thus much of the bitter streams; we come now to the fountain and spring-head, from whence they have their rise; and that is, the corruption of nature. For as there is a poisonous nature in the ferpent, besides its throwing out of its venom; fo, belides the finful luftings of the heart, there is an habi*tual corruption of the nature, which is the root of these luftings, loathings, and inordinate 'motions. trelen The reason why the clock or dial points the hour wa wrong is, because it is wrong fet; and till that did te set be altered, it will never point right. So man's ms of nature has a wrong set, which we call the corrup- ibis ca tion of nature, whereby it comes to pass that he and can never act right till that set be cured by regene. Sed from ration. It is a corrupt difpofition of the soul, where. ''TOWE by it is uriapt for any thing truly good, and prone luck to to evil.
The understanding is deprived of its primitive is the light and ability, unable to think a good thought, 2 Cor. iii. 5. yea, darkness is over all that region, die Eph. v. 8. As for the will, it is free to evil, but not to good, utterly unable so inuch as rightly to will any braka thing truly good, Phil. ii. 13. Nay, it is averse to the it, as a bullock unaccustomed to the yoke. It is A prone and bent to evil, Hof. xi. 7. but lies cross and contrary to God and goodness, Rom. viii. 7. el parte The affections are quite disordered, misplaced as to cap their objects, loving what they should hate, and stunda hating what they should love; or if right as to the von objects, they can keep no bounds. But of this I have spoke largely elsewhere *.
This corruption of nature is here forbidden, for it is truly and properly fin, Rom. vi. 12. & vii. 17. It is the flesh that lulteth against the Spirit, Gal. v. 18. and if fin, it must be contrary to and forbid. den by the law. And as finful anger is forbidden in the 6th commandment, as the immediate foun. tain of murder, Matth. v. 21. 22. ; fo, by a parity of reason, the corruption of nature is forbidden here, as the immediate fountain of that coveting or lufting, expressed therein.
And though it is impossible for us to prevent this fin, being born with it, it would be considered, that this law was originally given to Adam in inno. cency, requiring him to keep his nature pure and
* See Fourfold State.
hing, exprent is impoflible would be cor
uncorrupted, and so discharging all corruption of it; which law after his fin reinains in as full force as ever. And that the second Adam might answer the demands of the law in this point, he was born without this corruption, and continued ever free from it. And those that are his being regenerated, are freed from the reigning power of it, and par. take of a new nature...
If we look to this sin, we have a humbling view of ourselves, and must cry, Unclean, unclean.
1. It is the fountain of all actual transgressions, Mark vii. 21. Look to all the disorders of thy heart and life; they flow natively from hence, as the poisonous streams from the impoisoned foun. tain. Look to the disorders appearing in the lives of others, the fountain from whence they proceed is in thee. And if the cause be there, and the effect follow not, thank God, and not thyself,
2. All particular lusts are in it, as in the seed. It is the feed-plot of all particular fins. It is the cur. sed ground, where let the gardener weed as he will, new ones will still spring up. It is the cage of unclean birds, the mystery of iniquity, which we will never get to the ground of till the foundations be overturned at death,
3. We never were without it, Pfal. li. 5. It is a natural and hereditary disease, that cannot be cured without a miracle. We dread the serpent that is naturally poisonous more than any thing that is accidentally fo. So may we dread this beyond all things else. When we were not capable of actually finding, this made us guilty creatures.
4. We never are free of it, while awake or asleep.. It is a permanent and abiding fin. Actual fins are transient, though not as to the guilt of them, yet as to the being of them ; but whether the guilt of this be removed or not, it abides as fixed with bands of iron and brass.
Lastly, We never will be free of it while we
s in the
te fpiritu i toties rig en the
If we die out of Christ, it will never be cured. ibis ! But even though we be in him, yet it abides till a Chris death, and will never be totally removed till then.
Thus I have now gone through the ten commands, labouring to lay before you the command. Show ment in its exceeding breadth. And though I have been far from reaching all the particular duties 2 inabi commanded and sins forbidden; yet from the whole of what has been said, ye may fee,
: Eco 1. What a holy God we have to do with. We imaju see his holiness in this law as in a glass. He can encure no evil thing; and there are many things which the world reckons not upon, which he ab hors and will punilh,
propeo u 2. What a holy law this law is, requiring all purity of nature, heart, lip, and life; a perfection wth of parts and degrees ; discharging all manner of impurity and moral imperfection, not only in the fubftance, but in the manner of action.
2. That by the works of the law no flesh can be
in the end requires? what one line is there of this law that it may
ves not condemn us? where is that one point to the perfection of which we attain ?
4. The preciousness and excellency of Christ, who has fulfilled this law in all its parts, has all ing brought in everlasting righteousness, and furnishes. 23) 1.2 all that believe in him with an answer to all its de l'accident mands.
5. The rule of righteousness, by which ye are to be reader examine yourselves, to see your fins and shortcomings, the mark ye are to aim at if ye would be dois holy in all manner of conversation, which is no- svi grad thing the easier to be hit that it is so broad, and the evidence of your fincerity, in a perfection of those parts, though ye cannot attain to the degrees.
Lafily, Your absolute need of Christ, of his blood to sprinkle you from guilt, and of his Spirit to Linctify you, that ye may be complete in him. And
se point to
therefore let this holy law be your schoolmaster to bring you to Christ for ail.
Of Man's Inability to keep the Law perfectly.
ECCLESIASTES vii. 20. For there is not a just man upon earth that doth good, and
Jinneth not. I TAVING at considerable length endeavoured 11 to open up and explain the law of God, as abridged in the ten commandments, in some mea. fure in its spirituality and extent, by describing the several duties required and fins forbidden therein; and thewn the absolute impossibility of yielding a perfect obedience thereto, in order to give a title to eternal life; and directed you to come to Christ by faith as the end of the law for righteouiness, that your guilt may be removed by the application of his blood to your consciences, and that ye may be sanctified by his Spirit: I now proceed to the exposition of the remaining questions in the Catechirm, isbich I fhall mostly difcuts in a very short discourse on each, as I have been so long on the forner part of this excellent composition *
* As some readers may be apt to think, in regard Leveral of the following discourses are very thort, that they are not so fail as they were delivered, it is necessary to inform them, that, befides whic The author has here füid of his intended brevity, he was generally a hort proacier, feldom, un ordinary occasions, exceeding. half an hour, and that his delivery was somewhat slow. Bulides. we have the testimony of his dear friends Meil. Wilton, Davidfon, and Coiden, that he generally wrote his sermons aş fuil as he delivercd ther. See the preface to his sermons on allicions. And it is Lieved, that the attentive reader, upon a careful perefal of this lait part of the work, will find the several subjecta í uiliciently, though briefly, illuitrated, for promoting his belt and mo.i eura tial interests,