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and not because they are like themselves. And they that truly love Christ will love their brethren of mankind, by using proper endeavours to.convince them of fin; to persuade them to believe in Christ, if they are yet strangers to him, or to walk worthy of the gospel, if they have been made partakers of the grace thereof; by associating with the faints, and avoiding all unnecessary commerce with the wicked; and by forgiving personal injuries, and doing good to all men, especially those of the household of faith. Secondly, Let us view the marks of love to God.

1. True love to God is fupreme love. As Moses's rod, when turned into a serpent, swallowed up the rods of the Egyptian magicians ; so the love of God will swallow up all affections to the creature, whether lawful or unlawful enjoyments, Luke xiv. 27. and ever fit exalted above them all.

2. Love to our neighbour will make us wish well to all men, 1 Cor. v. 8. forgive those that have done us wrong, as we desire to be forgiven of God, Matth. V. 23. 24. and love the people of God of whatever denomination, because of the image of Christ appearing in them, i John iii. 14.

FIFTHLY, Our new obedience must be examined. Without new obedience we cannot pretend to be Christ's disciples, Matth. xi. 29. I fhall give a few marks of it.

(1.) It is new in respect of the principle it proceeds from, the love of God, Heb. vi. 10. (2.) In respect of the end of it, which is God's glory, i Cor. x. 31. (3.). It is universal, Psal. cxix. 6. I have a respect unto all thy commandments. (4.) It is constant, Matth. xxiv. 13. And wherein the believer fails, it is his burden, and it fends him always to the blood of Chrift, because of the sinfulness that attends it.

III. I proceed to thew the necessity of felf-examination. It is neceffary in two respects.

1. To prevent the fin of coming unworthily to the VOL. III.

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Lord's table. If we rus on this ordinance without previous examining of ourselves, how can we miss of coinmunicating unworthily?

2. To prevent the danger of coming so, which is eating and drinking damnation to one's self. The danger is great, (1.) To the foul, i Corèxi. 29. For be that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh damnation to himself, not discerning the Lord's body. (2.) To the body, ver. 30. For this cause many are weak and fickly among you, and many sleep. !!

Inf. Examine yourfelves then as to the state and cafe of yourtcives, in order to prepare for this ordinance. And let none venture upon it without this antecedent exercise, for the danger is very great. And, path

1. Be refolute in your felf-examination. Resolve to set about this important duty, and resolute to fol low it out; because ye will find no fmall difficulty is it, arising from several caufes. 18, From yourselves, even your own corrupt hearts'; and that on several heads. (1.). The ignorance of many makes it diffi

. cult. They have not the knowledge necessary to dif cern the nature or marks of grace. Ye must then endeivour the rather to discern thefe, or any one of them that is given. (2.) A secret respect to fome bou fom-idol, which they would fain keep quiet, Joha iii.

There are stolen goods, which they have no will to restore, and therefore have no inclination to search them out. But O consider, that one thing thou laskeslo (3:) A tecret fear that all is wrong with theni. Perhaps it is not so. But if it be really so, ye have the more need to get natters det to rights. 2diy, From Satan. He has a singular pique at this duty, and therefore will be ready to muiter up all his forces to keep men from venturing on it, or to delift from it, and that, (1.). By suggeiting unto men the insu: perable difficulty of the duty: There is a lion in be way,

à lion in the treets. (2.). By telling them, they will mar their own peace with it, but can never come


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to fee the truth of grace, or to affurance býr it. (3.) By setting them on to fome other duty, which though good in itself, is then unfeasonable, to justle out that which is then proper and necessary. Satan knows it to be an eminently useful duty, and therefore sets. himfelf in oppolition to it, that where mat, ters are not right, they may be kept so; and where perfons are in a good itate, be may rob them of the comfort of it. On these conliderations ye must be refolute and active in this exercise, The exhortation to it is doubled, 2 Cor. xiii. 5. Examine your own selves, prover your own selves. 9:20

. Ye mutt be impartial in this inquiry, Ye are in this matter judges in your own cause, and under a ftrong bias to partiality. But the best way is to take the matter to the higheft judge, with a refolution to know the worft of your cafe, 1 Cor. xi. 31. Be not as Saul when fent to destroy the Amalekites, who {pared Agag and the fattelt of the cattle. Overlook not right eyes and right hands. What Solomon fays of flocks, may we tay concerning your fouls, Prov. xxvij. 23. Be thou diligent to know the state of thy flocksys and look well to tby herds. However partial ye be, God will not be lo to you; so that your foolish partiality can do you no good, but a great deal of all, as it will make you ignorant of your own case, which it is your greatest wildom and interest to know.

Queft. May one who doubts of his being in the state of grace approach to the table of the Lord? Anf They whole consciences bear witneis, that they do un. feignedly desire Chriit and his grace, and to depart' troin all iniquity, may come notwithitandivg of their doubts, which are their weakness, and which they are to struggle against. But if one's conscience witness to him, that he is not clear for Christ as he is offered in the gospel, he cannot come fately, Matth. v. 6. & xi. 6. 1 Join vi. 20. 2 1. Letreyery one therefore carefully examine himself

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as to his fpiritual ftate before he approach to this holy ordinance of the Lord's fupper, left he contract the horrid guilt of trampling on the body and blood of Chrift, to which he has a right at the Lord's table."

The Necessity of Self-examination considered *,!

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2 CORINTHIANS xiii. 5: Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove

your own selves: know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you, except je be reprobates. In T HE dispensations of providence begin to be as

larming to this secure generation, and look, like the beginning of sorrows in the great mortality prevailing in several places. And the language of such a dispensation is as is expressed in the text, bidding en very one examine themselves, whether they be in the faith, &c. In which words we have two things.. 31

TO A necessary duty proposed ; and that is the trial of their state. It is proposed under a double nok

Though this discourse, confifting of two short sermons, was not delivered as any part of this catecheticai work, yet it is here inserted on account of its affinity to the preceding discourse, and from a perfuafion tbat it may, through the divine bleffing, be useful to the

as the subject is of no small importance both to faints and fin, ners; and were the design of it properly attended to, might prove a happy means of retrieving the decayed interests of religion amongst

And it is thought, this discourse will be the more acceptable to the reader, when he is told that it was the last the author ever wrote, after he was confined to his house by the illness of which he died; and that these two shori sermons were preached from a window in the manse to the people fanding without, on the ad and gth of April 1732 ; after which he preached no more, the God whom he had ferved in the work of the gospel from the latter end of the year 1699 having called him home on the 20th of May 1732, to inherit the crown of righteousness laid up for him. But by it and his other var luable writings, he yet speaketh; and his name and memory will be severed, as long as a tatte for pure and undefiled religion lublifts a• mongst us.



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tion, Examine and prove, the call being doubled, because of the weight of the matter. And,

1st, Of self-examination. And here, (1.) Consider the point the apostle would have them put to the trial, whether ye be in the faith. He knew very well that they professed faith in Christ; but all is not gold that glifters. None but believers, true believers, whose faith worketh by love, being a spiritual vital principle within them, will see heaven:. but many take themfelves, and others take them, for believers, who yet are not fo.

(2.) The trial he would have them to make of that point, Examine yourselves. The church of Corinth was a divided church. There was a cenforious party among them, conceited of them. felves, and despisers of this eminent and highly-diftin. guilhed apostle. For all the clear demonstrations there Were of the Lord's being with him, they fought a proof of Christ's speaking in him, ver. 3. Now, says he, ye are very much abroad, busy examining mé, and make much ado for a proof of Christ speaking in me: I would advise you to be more at home, and ex. amine yourselves. Put yourselves to the trial, whether ye are in the faith or not. The original word fignifies to make such a trial as one does of a thing by piercing through it, whereby he may know what is within, and whether it be found or not.

2dly, Of self-probation, Prove your own selves, to wit, by trial, as in courts offenders are tried, or they who stand for an office are put on trials, to prove whether they' be fit for it or not; or rather as goldsmiths try metals, whether by the fire, or by the touchstone, whereby they discern the true metal from counterfeit. This is near akin to the former expresfion, Examine, but is not quite the fame. This laft speaks the bringing the matter to a point, the pursu, ing the trial till it should end in a full proof of their ftate, good or bad. Ye, q. d. seek a proof of Christ speaking in me; pray rest not till ye get a proof of your own ftate.

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