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all the several steps of condescension and humiliation; in all the tenderness and transports of his passion; in all the melancholy scenes of his sufferings, and the bright and chearful ones of his glory. This is the faith that fets us free.
3. We must not stop in faith, till it be made perfect in love. “We must meditate divine truths till they have fired our souls; till they have enkindled our affections; till we be possessed by an ardent love of God, of Jesus, of righteousness, and of heaven; till all our other desires and passions be converted into, and swallowed up 'of love; till God becomes the center of our fouls; and in him we rest, in him we glory, and in him we rejoyce. O love! how great and glorious are the things that are faid of thee! 'tis thou who dost impregnate and animate faith itself: 'tis thou who dost surmount the difficulties of duty, and make the yoke of Christ easy, and his burden light : 'tis thou, who dost cast out fear, and make religion full of pleasure: 'tis thou, that dost make us watchful against temptations, and impatient under the interruptions of duty : 'tis thou, that makest us difrelish the pleasures of this world, and long to be dissolved and to be' with Christ. Here is the liberty of the fons of God. Blessed are they, even in this world, who attain it. But one caution
I must here add, that our love must not be a flash, a fit; but a fteddy and well-fetled affection; an affection that has the warmth of pason, and the firmness of habit. We must therefore, by repeated meditations and prayers, daily nourish this flame of the altar, and not fuffer it to go out. . 4. We must never be at rest, till we have possessed our minds with a perfect hatred of the sin which we are most fubject to. The love of God, his long-suffering and forbearance, the sufferings of Jesus, the struglings of the spirit, the peace and pleasure of holiness, the guilt and vexation, the shame and punishment of fin, its ill influence on our present perfection and happiness, on our peace and hopes, are proper topicks to effect this. A thorough hatred of sin, once setled and rooted in us, will produce that sorrow, that indignation, that watchfulness, that zeal, which will remove us far enough, not only from the sin, but also from the ordinary temptations to it; and place us almost without the danger of a relapse.
To this fourth rule, I should add this other : that when once a man has resolved upon a new course of life, whatever difficulties he finds in his way, whatever baffles he meets with, he must never quit the design of virtue and life; he must never give over fighting till he conquer :
the reason is plain, for he must either conquer or die. But this belonging rather to perseverance in virtue, than the beginning of it, therefore I but just mention
5. It will not be imprudent in this moral, as in physical cures, to observe diligently, and follow the motions and tendencies of nature. Where there are seeds of generosity and honour; the turpitude and shame of sin, the baseness and ingratitude of it, the love of God and of Jesus, and such like, are fit topicks to dwell upon. Where fear is more apt to prevail, there the terrors of the Lord are the most powerful motives : and so whatever the frame and constitution of nature be, it will not be difficult to find arguments in the gospel adapted to it, which will be so much the more.prevalent, as they are the more natural.
6. Lastly, We must use all means to obtain the Spirit of God; and to increase and cherish his influence : we must ask, and seek, and knock, i e. we must pray, and meditate, and travel with patience and with importunity, that our heavenly Father may give us his Holy Spirit : and, when we have it, we must not grieve it by any, deliberate sin; nor quench it by fecurity or negligence, by sensual freedoms and presumption ; but we must cherish
every motion, improve every desire and passion that it works in us; we must shun every appearance of evil; we must press on towards perfection; we must watch unto prayer ; we must spend the time of our sojourning here in fear; we must rejoyce and glory in the Lord ; and we must wait for the blessed hope, and the glorious appearance of the great God, and our Saviour Christ Jesus. And now I have finished what I had to say on this subject, of the perfect man's liberty as it relates to mortal or wilful fin: Í have Thewed what this sin is; and how far man may be freed from it, referring the reader to chap. 4. for the fruit of this freedom. I have here, lastly, given that advice which I thought most serviceable to the attainment of it. And through this whole chapter, I have had regard, not only to perfection, but sincerity ; it being indeed improper to do otherwise, since we cannot arrive at the one, but through the other. For sincerity is Perfection in its infancy or non-age"; and Perfection is nothing else but sincerity cultivated by meditation and discipline, and cherished by the the influence of heaven. And now let no man's heart fail him, while he contemplates the difficulties which block up the way to his liberty. The way indeed is steep, and the top is high ; but ferenity
and happiness, security and glory dwell there. Many indeed are the temptations which would forbid our ascent, and thrust us down; but we are armed all over; they cannot hurt us ; the Spirit supports and encourages us; and nothing but our cowar. dise and inconstancy can prevent our fuccess: Watch ye, ftand faft, quit ye like men, be strong ; and then you shall be sure to conquer and enter into rest.
CHA P. VII.
Idleness, either habitual or accidental.
idleness. . ; 17Nfruitfulness is a fit subject to conclude v å discourse of liberty with, or begin one of zeal; for lying like a tract of ground, between two bordering kingdoms, it may indifferently be laid to either. As it implies a direct opposition to spiritual life and sincerity, it naturally falls in under the confideration of zeal: as it implies a fervile subjection to some vile luft or other, it naturally falls in under the consideration of liberty : so that by allotting it this place, I shall at once compleat my reflections on the argument of