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SERMON LIX.

DESPISED

MI

CHRIST'S PROMISE, THE SUPPORT OF HIS

NISTERS.

LUKE xxi. 15. For I will give you a mouth and wisdom, which all your adversaries shall not be able to gainsay or resist. P. 134.

Our Saviour before his death, in order to support the ministers of his church against what should befall them after it, leaves with them this promise, 134. in the words of which is implied,

1st, A prediction, that the apostles should not fail of adversaries, 135. which would oppose them both in word, by gainsaying, 141. and indeed by resisting, 144.

Adly, The promise itself of such an assistance as should overcome all that opposition, 146. very necessary to remove the fears which he foresaw would be apt to seize their spirits, 147. In which promise we may consider,

1. The thing promised, viz. a mouth, 149. or an ability of speaking with great perspicuity, 149. simplicity, 151. zeal, 153. and wisdom, or a prudence in action and behaviour, 155. by opposing neither things nor persons any further than they stood in their way, 156. and opposing them resolutely whenever they did, 156. Which two, viz. mouth and wisdom, being united, have the greatest advantage, 158.

2. The person promising, viz. Christ, 158.

3. The means, by which that promise was performed, viz. the effusion of the Holy Ghost, 159.

SERMON LX.

FALSE METHODS OF

GOVERNING THE CHURCH OF ENG

LAND EXPLODED.

Gal. ii. 5.

To whom we gave place by subjection, no, not for an hour; that the truth of the gospel might continue with you. P. 162. From the way of St. Paul's dealing with the schismatics of his time, 164. a pattern may be drawn, how to deal with our dissenters, viz. not to yield up the least lawful, received constitution of our church to their demands or pretences, though never so urging and importunate, 167. The prosecution of which assertion shall be managed by considering,

1st, The pretences alleged by dissenters against our church's ceremonies, 167. As,

1. The unlawfulness of those ceremonies, 169. 2. Their inexpediency, 170.

3. Their smallness, 172. Which three exceptions are confuted severally, 172.

2dly, The consequences of yielding or giving them up, 174. Which will appear very dangerous, if we observe,

1. The temper and disposition of those men who press for such a compliance, 174.

2. The effects of such a compliance heretofore, 176. and those, which a comprehension is likely to produce for the future, 177. together with a discourse upon toleration, 180.

3dly, The good and great influence of a strict adherence to the constitutions of our church, in procuring the settlement of it, and preserving the purity of the gospel amongst us, 189. because it is the most sovereign means,

1. To preserve unity in the church, 189.

2. To beget in the church's enemies an opinion of the requisiteness of those usages, 190.

. 3. To possess them with an awful esteem of the conscience of the governors of the church, 191.

Lastly, A brief recapitulation is made of all the forealleged reasons and arguments, why (according to St. Paul's example and dealing with the judaizing Christians) we are by no means to give place in the least to our dissent

a

ers, 197.

SERMONS LXI. LXII. LXIII.

[The chief heads of these sermons are printed p. vii. &c. of

Vol. II. as they relate to the subject there treated of.]

SERMONS LXIV. LXV. LXVI.

DELIVERANCE FROM TEMPTATION THE PRIVILEGE OF THE

RIGHTEOUS.

2 PETER ii. 9. The Lord knoweth how to deliver the godly out of tempta

tions. P. 289. Man's condition, with reference to temptation, is so desperate, that without the assistance of a superior good spirit he cannot be an equal match for the evil one, 289. And the text sets forth to us the signal mercy of God to the godly or truly pious persons, 292. in delivering them from all temptations or trials, chiefly such as are designed to corrupt them, 294.

1st, All the ways of deliverance from temptation may be reduced to these, 300.

1. Of being kept from it, 300.
2. Of being supported under it, 306.

3. Of being brought out of it, 311. when the temptation has in some measure prevailed; for there are several degrees, 312. viz. seduction, 312. enticement, 312. consent of the will, 313. commission of sin, 313. and the habitual reigning of sin, 314. Into which last state those scarcely fall who are actually in a state of grace, 317. .

From the foregoing particulars we may learn,

1. The great goodness and wisdom of God in the severest precepts of religion, 318.

2. The most effectual method of dealing with a temptation, viz. prevention, 319.

Adly, The impulsive causes inducing God thus to deliver the godly, 323. are,

1. The free mercy of God, 324.

2. The prevailing intercession of Christ, 328. With some objections answered, 332. and a case resolved concerning the fallibility of regenerate persons, 334. and the several assurances of regeneration, 337. and the expectations men may have of being delivered, 335. in relation to

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the ways of entering into temptation, 343. illustrated by instances of different success, 344. with a confutation of some pretences alleged by some bold men, who unwarrantably put themselves upon trial, 346.

3dly, Deliverance out of temptation is a transcendent privilege, 352. Which will appear from those intolerable evils consequent upon a prevailing temptation, 353. viz.

1. The soul's utter loss and damnation, 354.

2. Loss of a man's peace with God and his own conscience, 357.

3. Temporal judgments of God in some signal and severe affliction, 361.

4. The disgrace and reproach which it casts upon our Christian profession, 366.

With some useful inferences, 371. and directions for a man not to be peremptory with God in his prayers, for any particular enjoyment or state of life, 374. but to acquiesce in the state allotted him by Providence, 374.

SERMON LXVII.

THE HAPPINESS OF BEING KEPT FROM THE HOUR OF TEMP

TATION.

REVELATION iii. 10. Because thou has kept the word of my patience, therefore

will I keep thee from the hour of temptation, which is coming upon all the world, to try the inhabitants of the earth. P. 377.

Nothing more sets off the greatness of God's mercy in delivering his people out of temptation, than the critical time of his vouchsafing it, 377. For,

1st, There is a certain proper season and hour which gives a peculiar force and efficacy to temptation, 378.

2dly, A temptation attains its proper season and hour by these means, 382.

1. By the original, universal corruption of man's na

ture, 382.

2. By every man's particular corruption, 383.

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3. By the continual offer of alluring objects agreeable to it, 385.

4. By the unspeakable malice and activity, the incredible skill and boldness of the tempter, 385.

5. By God's just judgment, in commissioning this evil spirit to tempt at a rate more than ordinary, 387.

6. By a previous growing familiarity of the mind with the sin which a man is tempted to, 388.

7. By a long train of gradual, imperceivable encroaches of the flesh upon the spirit, 389.

3dly, A temptation's proper season may be discerned by some signs, 391. As,

1. By an unusual concurrence of all circumstances and opportunities for the commission of any sin, 391.

2. By a strange averseness to, if not a total neglect of spiritual exercises, prayer, reading, and meditation, 393.

3. By a temptation's unusual restlessness and importunity, 394.

4thly, Useful inferences may be drawn from this discourse, 397. Such as these;

1. Every time wherein a man is tempted, is not properly the hour of temptation, 397.

2. Every man shall assuredly meet with such an hour, 398.

3. The most successful way to be carried safe through this hour, is to keep the word of Christ's patience, 400.

SERMONS LXVIII. LXIX.

HOW, AND BY WHAT WAYS, GOD DELIVERS US FROM TEMP

TATION. 1 Cor. x.

13. God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that

you are able ; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it. P. 404.

True faith is bottomed upon God's infinite wisdom and power ; who alone is able to give a full and absolute deliverance out of temptation, 404, &c. Some of the principal temptations which threaten most the souls of men, are,

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