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their Maker and rightful Lord, had ply the benefits of his work to the become the bond slaves of the souls of his people, and make them enemy of God and man; and were “a willing people in the day of his led captive by him at his will. Re- power,” not one of them would have collect that this deplorable state come to him to receive his benefits. was not one, like that of the He. No-having conquered their enebrews in Egypt, into which we had' mies, he had still to subdue them to fallen by our misfortune only-It himself, by the influences of his was one in which our own guilt had Spirit-To draw them sweetly by placed us; but from which no ef- the cords of love ; to unite them forts of our own could deliver us; to identify them, with himself, that had we even been disposed to make all the privileges and all the posefforts for that purpose. But it was
sessions of the sons of God might not a small part of our misery, that, be ensured to them; that happiness, wretched as our condition was, we which eye bath not seen, nor ear liked it well. We were rebels heard, nor of which the heart of against Jehovah, and slaves to Sa- man hath ever conceived, might betan, and were pleased with our come theirs, in virtue of their vital chains. We needed both a provi. union with himself. Of this inession for the pardon of our guilt, timable spiritual deliverance, the and for rendering us willing to ac- Exodus of the Israelites from cept the pardon, when it should be Egypt—their being brought from at our offer-willing to receive de- under the tyranny of Pharaoh, and liverance, when the way of deliver the cruel slavery of their task-masance should be prepared and open. ters there, by the mighty power and This, precious youth, was your outstretched arm of Jehovah, was situation and mine, as viewed in indeed a fit and striking type, and our natural state, and without a yet it was but a very small matter, Redeemer. And what has the Re- in the comparison. deemer done to bring us vut of this Recollecting then that it was state, and to render us heirs of “an God our Redeemer, that it was inheritance incorruptible, and un- “ Immanuel, God with us,” who defiled, and that fadeth not away?” from the top of Sinai delivered the He has come from heaven to earth, ten cominandments, as a Moral law, humbled himself to assume our na- for the guidance of man in the perture, expiated our guilt by a life of formance of his duty-recollecting suffering, terminating in the cursed that it was he who loved his people. death of the cross. “We were not with a love that was stronger than redeemed with corruptible things, death; that it was he who gave his as silver and gold—but with the life for theirs; that it was he who precious blood of Christ, as of a raised them from being heirs of hell lamb without blemish and without to be the heirs of heaven-recolspot.” Thus was a way opened to lecting that he it was, who gave us bring us out of our prison house, all these precepts; and that he into the glorious liberty of the sons gave them, not less with a view to of God. But alas! as has been our own best interest, than as a test stated, man, infatuated as well as of our obedience and attachment to enslaved by sin, had no disposi- himself—let any one say, whether tion or inclination to be freed the conclusion of our Catechism from his bondage; and would in be not well and strongly made, that fact never have been delivered, if " because the Lord is our God and the Redeemer had not done even Redeemer, THEREFORE more than pay the price of re- bound to keep all his commanddemption. if the Saviour had not ments." ascended to heaven, and sent the I am particularly solicitous, my
tering on the consideration of the tion which Christ hath wrought out, Moral law of God, that you should for all who believe in him. If it take that view of it which has just had not been a good, reasonable, been given; and that you should equitable, and holy law in itself, he keep it in mind, through the whole would surely never have consentof the ensuing lectures on the pre- ed to be made under it, to obey cepts of the decalogue. If you will it perfectly, and to bear its peconsider God, in the character of nalty to the utmost. But if the your Redeemer, as delivering these law is good and excellent in itcommandments, they will come self, all who love goodness and exwith the most powerful appeals to cellence must love this law; and your hearts and consciences, and if they love it, they will try to the you will, at the same time, view an utmost to obey it; for it is a gross obedience to them in its true light absurdity to pretend to love a law -not as something that will merit which we allow ourselves to disreheaven, but only as the proof and gard and violate. The very nature evidence of real, cordial love to the of a law implies the demand of obeholy law of God, and of your disci- dience; and if we love the demand pleship, as the sincere followers of of obedience, we shall assuredly him who has redeemed you. Do render obedience. This obedience, you not perceive that the very no- moreover, in the present instance, tion and name of a Redeemer, im- is the appointed expression of our plies that you were captives to sin gratitude and love to Christ. This and Satan? And if so, and you is his own test—“ If ye love me, had nothing to pay, and must owe keep my commandments.” Thus your deliverance entirely to him, you see that if you are right-minded, ought he not to have the glory of you will strive to walk by the moral the whole? Suppose your obedi- law as a rule of life, both because ence, henceforth to the end of life, you love it for its own excellence, could be perfect, would that cancel and because this is to be the proof your former debt? Would you not of your gratitude and love to your still owe ten thousand talents to Saviour: And this is what is callthe law and justice of God, for ed evangelical obedience, and new your past transgressions ? But obedience-an obedience rendered this supposition is never realized. from the new principle of love-not No mere man, since the fall, ever from the slavish principle of fear, did, or ever will, obey the law nor the mercenary principle of purof God perfectly, in this life; and chasing or meriting heaven. May therefore will need constant par- the Spirit of all grace incline us don for the imperfection of his all to such an obedience, to all the present obedience, as well as for commandments of God our Rehis previously aggravated and accu- deemer; and to his name shall be mulated guilt
. See, then, that you all the praise, both now and evermust be indebted to the boundless more—Amen. grace of God in the Redeemer, for the whole of your salvation. Yet this ought not to diminish, but greatly to increase, your sense of THE GOSPEL DOCTRINE OF JUSTIFI. obligation to obey his commandments? The inherent excellence, Translated for the Christian Advocate, and indispensable obligation of the from the Archives du Christianisme. moral law of God contained in the (Continued from vol. VI. page 543.) ten commandments, is no where so That we are justified before God clearly and strikingly, seen, as in by faith only, the express declarathe whole process of that redemp- tions of the word of God incontest.
CATION BY FAITH.
ably prove. Besides the passages have sinned, and are wholly destiwhich we have already quoted, we tute of the glory of God. We are add a few others, directly to the justified freely by his grace, through point. “Abraham believed, and it the redemption that is in Christ (his faith) was counted unto him Jesus, whom God has appointed to for righteousness (Rom. iv.3); The be a propitiatory victim, through gospel of Christ is the power of faith in his blood. Where is matGod unto salvation to every one ter of boasting then? It is exthat believeth (Rom. i. 16); Who- cluded. By what law? Is it by soever believes in Jesus Christ hath the law of works? Nay; but by the everlasting life.” (John iii. 16.) If law of faith. Therefore we conthe Saviour commended the centu- clude, that a man is justified by rion who requested the cure of his faith without the deeds of the law." servant; the woman who was bowed (Rom. iii. 22, 28.) “ We know that down under a grievous infirmity a man is not justified by the works for eighteen years; the Canaanitish of the law, but solely by faith in woman who persevered in her pray- Jesus Christ.” (Gal. ii. 16.)* Even ers, was it not on account of their setting the Scriptures entirely aside, faith? If he opened the eyes of the it is impossible to support the tetwo blind men who had implored net, that our merits are of any achis compassion, was it not in saying count in the remission of our sins. to them, “ According to your faith But although our works are of no be it unto you,” (Matt. ix. 29). account in our justification, yet Why did he not say to them, Be it they ought to be the necessary unto you according to your works? fruits, the immediate consequences When Peter began to sink in the of it, as a testimony before men and waters, Jesus called him a inan “of to ourselves, that we are justified little faith.” “All things are pos- before God. It is in this sense that sible to them that believe.” (Matt. Paul declares to us, that “we are xvii. 20.) “What must I do to be created in Christ Jesus unto good saved ?" said the Philippian jailer. works,” (Eph. ii. 10); and that « 1 · Believe,” answered Paul and Si- " with the heart, man believeth unto las, “ Believe on the Lord Jesus righteousness; and with the mouth, Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and confession is made unto salvation." thy house.” “I am the door,” says (Rom. X. 10.) It is for this reason Jesus, "by me, if any man enter in, that our Lord requires, that our he shall be saved."
" light shine before inen; that they, Although these passages furnish seeing our good works, may glorify the strongest evidence, still nothing our Father who is in heaven;" and is more repugnant to the pride of that his apostle exhorts us to “be the human heart, than the truth to followers of God as dear children.” which they testify-that we are “Good works," says Augustine, freely justiñed by faith; and it ap- “do not go before him that is to be pears to this proud heart a shame, justified, but they follow him who not to bring something to God, is justified.” Opera bona non prein payment for the salvation which cedunt justificandum, sed sequuntur he bestows. But the sinner must justificatum. lay aside this foolish self-conceit, “Good works," says St. Clement, in order that he may solicit the “follow knowledge as the shadow grace of God as a pure gift, of which he is, in every point of view, un- • The above passages are rendered acworthy." The righteousness of cording to the French Protestant Version, God by faith in Jesus Christ, is unto (the Genevan); but the word soLELY,
(seulement) which M. Blanc makes emall, and upon all them that believe; phatical, has no word corresponding to it for there is no difference, since all in the original.-.T,.
follows the body." The Holy Spi- and in this respect, James perfectly rit teaches us, that “those who die agrees with him, when he maintains in the Lord are blessed, because that “ the faith which is without their works do follow them.” (Rev. works, is dead.” The former exxiv. 13.) Although our good works horts sinners to be reconciled to are the natural fruits of our faith, God, by faith in Christ Jesus; the yet God does not, in all cases, call latter speaks of pretended Chris. upon us to give external evidence tians, who imagine that because of our justification; as witness the they have a historical knowledge of penitent thief upon the cross, and the Holy Scriptures (and a name to all those who sincerely embrace live,] they shall be able to enter Christ as their Saviour, in the hour into eternal life. In this sad state of death.*
of foolish security, he makes them This simple exposition of our observe that such a faith is superfifaith, wholly based upon the Holy cial, fruitless, and ineffectual to salScriptures, will be deemed suffi- vation. If they, to whom James cient to repel the calumnious re- addressed himself, had really posproach which our adversaries often sessed the faith, of which Paul bring against us, and which the ene. spoke, he would not have required mies of the gospel formerly brought them to "show their faith by their against Paul, in the first century works," for this would have been
, of Christianity, that we open a useless. He says not, though a man door to licentiousness, and despise have faith, but " though a man say good works. "Ah!” says Morus, he hath faith ;" which proves that o would to God we were as holy as he speaks by concession, not inour doctrine is scriptural! Would tending to say that hypocrites, to God that we could make the same wordy Christians. (chretiens de pareply to them by our works, "that roles) have faith. Such persons have we do by our words, and that our a false faith, which the devils also conduct were as Christian as our possess, and which will only render confession of faith!"
them more culpable in the eyes of 1. In opposition to the doctrine Him who cursed the barren fig-tree. we maintain, the following passages This apostle does not deny that the from the apostle James are cited. faith of Abraham "was imputed to “ Abraham was justified by works; him for righteousness," (v.23); but by works a man is justified, and not addressing himself to men who preby faith only." (James ii. 21, 24.) tend to have the faith of Abraham, Here let it be observed, that so far and who, slumbering in criminal from setting the sacred writers to inactivity, give no external proof of contradict one another; we are their faith, he reminds them that under the necessity of acknowledg- this holy patriarch perfected his ing that the apostles Paul and faith, by a prompt obedience; and James were directed by the same that his works evidently justified spirit, and intended to declare the bim before men, showing that he had same faith. When Paul says that believed God, and had confided in faith justifies us, he speaks of a liv- his promises. ing faith, which “works by love;" 2. It is moreover objected, that
the works which Paul excludes from If the dying give no external evi: justification, are ceremonial works dence of embracing Christ
, how shall we only. We reply, that it was imposknow that any of the dying are justified? sible Abraham could be justified by And if they give external evidence of the ceremonial law, because it was sincere faití, repentance, love, and hore, not given to the Jewish people unthen they give external evidence, in these fruits of ibc Spirit, of their justification. til four hundred years afterwards. - TR.
The apostle intends the mora!, e
well as the ceremonial law, since he overwhelm it, when I call to respeaks of “ the law which gives the membrance the sufferings of the knowledge of sin,” (Rom. iii. 20,) Lord—Wherefore my merit is and affirms it to be that by which the Lord's mercy. While the Lord every mouth may be stopped, and is rich in mercy, I am not poor in the whole world may become guilty merits; and as the mercies of the before God.” He treats of all kinds Lord are great, my merits also are of works, whether under the natu- abundant. Shall I proclaim my ral or revealed law, as may be seen own righteousness -But, Lord, I by consulting Rom. iv. 1, 6, and xi. remember thy righteousness, which 6; 2 Tim. i. 19; Tit. iii. 5. is mine; for the Father has given
From the doctrine of justifica- thee to be my righteousness." "I tion by faith, it results that we ren
glory not in
my works,” says Amder due homage to God, by acknow- brose, “but I glory in Jesus Christ; ledging him alone to be righteous. I glory not as if I were righteous, Has he not " first loved us? What and free from sin, but I glory that have we that we have not received” I have been redeemed, and that my of his mercy? And“ if we have re- sins are pardoned. I glory not ceived, why should we glory, as if that I have been serviceable to any we had not received? Of Him, and one, but because Christ is
adthrough Him, and to Him, are all vocate with the Father, because for things.” The proud man, who me his blood has been shed, and for would enter into heaven by his own me he has suffered death." works, sins against the justice and O Lord, our God, make our souls mercy of God. He sins against his experience the delightful sweetness justice, in presuming to offer empty, of this faith, which is a gift of thy ineffectual satisfaction; against his bounty, and without which it is immercy, in thinking that he needs it possible to please thee (Eph. ii. 8; not. The saints in paradise cry Heb. xi. 6)! with a loud voice, “Worthy is the
ANDREW BLANO, Lamb that was slain, to receive power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and honour, and blessing.” “God forbid that I should glory," For the Christian Advocate. says Paul,“ save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ.” Thus our
THE CHRISTIAN'S REMEMBER ME. conscience is truly peaceful, be- " This do in remembrance of me."-Luke xxii, 10. cause our salvation is not the work
In morcy, Jesus condescends of man, and because we lean not on Communion sweet to hold the feeble arm of flesh, but on the
With sinners, call'd to be his friends, infinite mercy of God. Where,"
And give them joys untold:
In this memorial of his love, says Bernard, “ where shall the
My Saviour's pledge I see ;fainting find true, steady, and as- This do-these symbols tako, and prove sured repose, unless in the suffer- Thou dost remember me. ings of our Saviour? I rest there with so much the more assurance,
In these provisions of his board,
The hallowed bread and wine, because he is powerful to save. me. I view the sufferings of my Lord, The world around me rages to trou
And see his glories shino : ble me, my own body persecutes o, how propitious ho appears,
With grace divinely free ; me, Satan lays spares to surprise His voice my drooping spirit cheors, me; but I shall not fall, for I am He says-remember me! supported by a solid and unshaken rock. I have sinned, I have even
Yes-tho' the crimes in memory rise committed great sins; they trouble I'll look, when Justice vengoance cries,
Which pierced my Saviour's side, my conscience: but they shall not To Jesus crucified : VOL VII. Ch. Ade.