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retire as into a shadow. Judg. ix. 15. or as the chickens do under the wings of the hen, Ruth. ii. 12. The Lord God of Israel, under whose wings thou art come to trust; properly 10 retire. Compare Matth. xxiii. 37. How often would I have gathered thy children tozether, even as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings.
5. Lastly, This trust of faith imports an affiance, confidence, or trust on Christ and his righteousness, that he will save us from fin and wrath, according to his promise set before us in the gospel: Whofeever believeth in him, shall not perish, but have everlasting life. Ifa. xxv. 9. We have waited for him, and be will save us.
Heb. ii. 6. Whofe house are we, if we, bold fast the confidence. Ila. I. 10. Let him trust in the name of the Lord, and stay upon bis Ged. And that this trust of faith is thus particular, is evident also from the nature of the thing. For whosoever trusts in a person for any thing, hath a perfuafion of the lame degree of firmness with the trust, that that person will do that thing for him. And for a fure token of this, where the party trusted fails, the party trusting is afhamed and confounded; as being disappointed in that which he trufted he would do for him. Wherefore, since the trust of faith is never disappointed, the scripture doth therefore assure us, that be that believeth on him Mall not be confounded, i Pet. ji. 6. nor ashamed, Rom. x, 11. The which doth fufficiently intimate, that he that believeth on Jesus Chrift for salvation, dath trust that he will save him; otherwise there could be no place for his being con. founded or ashamed, whatever fhould be the event of his trust. Accordingly the trust of faith doth, in pro: portion to the firmness thereof, establish and fix the heart, Pfal, cxii. 7. His heart is fixed, trufiing in the Lord: and hereof we have a plain instance in Paul's case, 2 Tim. i. 12. lam not ashamed; for I know whom I have believed, marg. or trusted. Agreeable hereun,
to, faith is called in effect a building on Christ, as upon a foundation that will bear .our weight, Ifa. xxviii. 16. with 1 Pet. ii. 6. It is called a leaning upon him, Cant. viii. 5.; a staying on him, Ila. xxvi. 3. : a refting or relying on him, 2 Chron. xiv. 11. and xvi. 8. as upon one that will bear us up; a looking unto him, Ifa. xlv. 22. having our eyes upon him, 2 Chron. XX. 12. as one from whom we look for help and salvation; and finally, believing on him, 1 Pet. ii. 6. as one by whom we fball be saved, Acts. XV. 11.
The finner being shaken out of all confidence for life and salvation in other things, ftays himself by faith on Jesus Christ and his righteousness; trusting on him, that he shall have life and salvation thro' his righteousness. It is true indeed, this particular trust and confidence may be assaulted with many doubts and fears: but these are things that faith hath to conflict with, as its oppofite; and the ftrong. er that faith is, the lefs they prevail; the weaker it is, they prevail the more ; Matth. xiv. 31. O thou of little faith, wherefore didi thou doubt? It is indeed of very different degrees in different persons, and in one and the fame person at different times : but if you remove all trust and confidence in Christ for one's falvation, from faith, the very nature and effence of it is destroyed. For at that rate, the sinner, whose confidence in the flesh for his falvation is razed, having no confidence for it in Christ neither, is left quite unsettled and wavering, like a wave of the fea, or a reed in the water: and where then is faith's building, leaning, staying, relying, and resting the foulon Chrift? James i. 6. Let him ask in faith, non thing wavering : for he that wavereth is like a wave of the fea, driven with the wind, and tossed. Verse 7. For let not that man think that he sball receive any thing of the Lord. But the believing finner, finding his confidence in the flélh razed, doth, by believing, cast the anchor of his trust and confidence
on Christ Jesus and his righteousness, confiding and trusting that he will save him. And however he may indeed waver in that matter ; being tossed with doubts and fears about his falvation, weakening the actings of that his confidence; and sometimes prevailing so far, as to cause an intermitting of the exercise thereof: yet, even in that case, under all that tossing, he doth not waver like a wave of the sea, that hath nothing to fix it; but only like a ship at anchor. His confidence is never quite rooted out, as to the habit thereof: but will again exert itself: and in that respect every believer, as a real partaker of Christ holds the beginning of his confidence stedfast unto the end, Heb. iii. 14. And this trust and con. fidence is what our reformers called assurance, and described faith by.
OBJECT. 1. Since it is not true of all who hear the.. gospel, that they mall be saved, there cannot bę, in the case of every one of them, a ground on which this particular trust may be warrantably founded: Ans. All and every one of them, notwithstanding that have a solid ground for it, even for trusting on Christ and his righteousness for their own salvation in particular. And that is the record and testimony of God in his gospel, that, whosoever believeth in him, shall not peris) but have everlasting life, John ii. 16. The true sense of which, as appears from what is faid, is, that whosoever shall have this trust and con. fidence in Christ, shall not be disappointed, but shall certainly be saved. Here then is the faithfulness of God in his word, for the foundation of this faith of particular truft: and true faith is always built on that foundation. It is certain indeed, that, in the event, many to whom the gospel comes will not be saved: but then it is as certain, that those who will not be saved, will not believe neither : that is, they will not come up to this particular trust and confidence, we have described from the word, Ifa. liii. I.
Who hath believed our report? and to whom is the arm of the Lord revealed ? Howbeit, at this rate they have a firm ground of particular confidence. If they will not believe for all it, their ruin is of them. felves, they will perish without excuse; and their unbelief will be the great ground of their condemna tion. Jesus Christ, with his righteousness and falva. tion, is so far made theirs, by the Father's appoint. ment, and his own offer, that they may lawfully and warrantably trust on him as their Saviour, each one for his own salvation. If they will not believe it, or not trust on him accordingly; they do by their unbelief and distrust, dishonour the Father and his Son, and most justly perish.
OBJECT, 2. Many trust in Christ as their Saviour, with a particular confidence that he will save them; and yet are grofly ignorant, profane, or formal hy. pocrites ; and therefore are not true believers, nor united to Christ. Ans. The apostle speaking of faith unfeigned, 1 Tim. i. 5. doth suppose that there is a feigned faith. And indeed such trusters in Christ have it ; but as for this trust which we have describ, ed from the word, it is as certain they have it not, as it is certain that true faith purifies the heart, Acts xv. g. and truly fanctifies, chap. xxvi. 18. As such trusters say, that they receive Christ, and rest on him alone for falvation, embrace, accept, and consent to him in the gospel offer ; even so they say, that they trust on him. But this trust on him they really have not. For, first, they trust not on him for his whole falvation ; nay, as for the chief part thereof, to wit, falvation from fin, they are by no means reconciled thereto: wherefore it may well be an object of their fear and aversion; but it cannot be an object of their truft. Secondly, They trust not on him alone for the salvation they really defire : they do not trust him with all their heart; but partly to him, and partly to their own doings and suffer.
ings rings, betwixt which and the Saviour their heart is
divided. This is clear from Matth. v. 3. Blesed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of hea. ven. Lafly, Their trust is not grounded on the faithfulness of God in the free promise of the gospel; but reared upon some one or other fandy foundation: Ifa. liii. '1. Who hath believed our report? Matth. vii. 26. Every one that heareth these sayings of mine, and doth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man which built his house upon the sand.
And thus have we shown, what is that faith or believing by which a sinner unites with Jesus Christ, and so enters favingly into the covenant of grace. Why God hath appointed it to be the means of union with Christ, may be learned from Rom. iv. 6. There. fore it is of faith, that it might be by grace; of which before, Here I shall only observe, that this trusting wholly on Christ and his righteousness for his whole salvation, is an apt means or instrument of union, betwixt Christ the party trusted, and the soul trusting on him : forasmuch as the soul is there. in so carried forth unto him, that from that moment is thereby as if it were wholly to stand or fall with him; as the superstructure with the foundation, the Jeaner with the leaning-stock: the thing relying, resting, staying upon another thing, with the stay or base on which it is laid. Wherefore, the object. of faith being infallible, they that thus trust in the Lord mall be as mount Zion, which cannot be removed, but abideth for ever, Pfal. cxxv. 1. Thereby they are united to Christ, and being united to him, are personally instated in the covenant to their eter. nal falvation.