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of this truth, will make way for their receiviog the higher truths, that stand between them and the top of the mysterious ladder of truth. I grant, it is impoffi. ble they fhould leap at once to the middle, much less to the highest round of that ladder ; but if the foot of it is upon earth, in the very nature of things, the lowest step is within their reach, and by laying hold of it, they may go on from faith to faith, till they stand firm even in the chriftian faith; if diftinguilhing grace has elected them to hear the christian gospel. The most fudden converfions imply this gradual transition. As in the very nature of things, when the spirit of the Lord caught away Philip from the Eunuch, and transported him to Azotus, he made Philip's body rapidly measure all the distance between the wilderness of Gaza and Azotus : fo, when he helped the Philippian jailor from the gates of hell to the gates of heaven in one night, he made him rapidly pass thro' the fear of God, the dread of his joltice, and the pangs of penitential desires after salvation, before he entered into the joyous reft, that remains for those that heartily believe in Chrift. Nor is this quick, tho' gradual, transition from midnight darkness to noon-day light, an unintelligible mystery ; fince we are witnesses of a fimilar event every revolving day. The vegetable and the animal world help us likewise to understand the nature of sudden conversions. Every philosopher knows, that a mushroom passes thro' almost as many stages of the vegetative life in fix hours, as an oak does in two hundred: and those animalcula that frisk into life in the morning of a fummer's day, propagate their spe.cies at noon, are old at four o'clock, and dead at fix, measure the length of animal life as really, as Methutelah did in his millennium.

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SE C TI O N II.

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Saving Truth is the obje&t of saving Faith : What

Truth is, and what great things are spoken of it and of the WORD. Our salvation turns upon it. T appears by the preceding section, that saving

Truth is the ground and object of saving Faith: but, “ What is TRUTH?"--This is the awful question, that Pilate once asked of him, who was best able to answer it. But alas ! Pilate was so hurried by the lying fear of man, that he did not stay for an answer. May I venture to give one. - Truth is fpiritual fubfiance ; and a Lie, spiritual shadow. Truth is fpiritual light ; and a Lie, spiritual darkness. TRUTH is the root of all virtue, and a Lie is the root of all vice. Truth is the celestial tincture, that makes spirits good; and a Lie, 'the infernal tincture, that makes them evil. A Lie is as nearly related to the Devil, as infection to one that has the plague, or opacity to the earth : and Truth is as nearly related to God, as fragrancy to burning incense, and light to the unclouded fun.

According to this definition of Truth and ERROR, may we not give plain and scriptural answers to some of the deepest questions in the world ? --What is God? The reverse of the prince of darkness, and of the father of lies : He is the father of lights, and the God of Truth: He is Light, and in him is no darkness at all.-What is Christ : He is the brightness of his Father's glory ; a light; a great light to them that druell in the shadow of death. He is the TRUTH; the True Witness ; the Truth itself; Emmanuel, God with us, full of grace and TRUTH.-What is the Holy Ghost ? The Spirit of TRUTH : Yea, says St. John, The Spirit is TRUTH, and leads into all Truth.-What is the Devil? The Spirit of ERROR, the multitude of LYING Spirits and

of this truth, will make way for their receiviog the higher truths, that stand between them and the top of the mysterious ladder of truth. I grant, it is impoffible they should leap at once to the middle, much less to the highest round of that ladder ; but if the foot of it is upon earth, in the very nature of things, the lowelt step is within their reach, and by laying hold of it, they may go on from faith to faith, till they stand firm even in the chriftian faith; if distinguishing grace has elected them to hear the christian gospel. The most fudden converfions imply this gradual transition. As in the very nature of things, when the spirit of the Lord caught away Philip from the Eunuch, and transported him to Azotus, he made Philip's body rapidly measure all the distance between the wilderness of Gaza and Azotus : fo, when he helped the Philippian jailor from the gates of hell to the gates of heaven in one night, he made him rapidly pass thro' the fear of God, the dread of his juitice, and the pangs of penitential desires after salvation, before he entered into the joyous reft, that remains for those that heartily believe in Chrift. Nor is this quick, tho' gradual, transition from midnight darkness to noon-day light, an unintelligible mystery; since we are witnesses of a fimilar event every revolving day. The vegetable and the animal world help us likewise to understand the não ture of sudden converfions. Every philosopher knows, that a mushroom passes thro' almost as many stages of the vegetative life in fix hours, as an oak does in two hundred : and those animalcula that frisk into life in the morning of a fummer's day, propagate their spe.cies at noon, are old at four o'clock, and dead at fix, measure the length of animal life as really, as Methntelah did in his millennium.

SE C

SE C TI O N II.

IT

Saving Truth is the obje&t of faving Faith : What

Truth is, and what great things are spoken of it and of the WORD. Our falvation turns upon it. T appears by the preceding section, that saving

Truth is the ground and object of saving Faith: but, “ What is TRUTH?"--This is the awful question, that Pilate once asked of him, who was best able to answer it. But alas! Pilate was so hurried by the lying fear of man, that he did not stay for an answer. May I venture to give one. Truth is fpiritual Jubftance ; and a Lie, fpiritual Madow. Truth is fpiritual light; and a Lie, fpiritual darkness. TRUTH is the root of all virtue, and a Lie is the root of all vice. Truth is the celestial tincture, that makes fpirits good; and a Lie, 'the infernal tincture, that makes them evil. A Lie is as nearly related to the Devil, as infection to one that has the plague, or opacity to the earth : and Truth is as nearly related to God, as fragrancy to burning incense, and light to the unclouded sun.

According to this definition of Truth and ERROR, may we not give plain and scriptural answers to fome of the deepest questions in the world !--What is God? The reverse of the prince of darkness, and of the father of lies : He is the father of lights, and the God of Truth: He is Light, and in him is no darkness at all. ---What is Christ : He is the brightness of his Father's glory; a light; a great light to them that dwell in the shadow of death. He is the Truth; the True Witness; the Truth ITSELF; Emmanuel, God with us, full of grace and Truth.-What is the Holy Ghost? The Spirit of TRUTH : Yea, says St. John, The Spirit is TRUTH, and leads into all TRUTH.-What is the Devil. The Spirit of ERROR, the multitude of LYING Spirits and

their

their prince ; he that abode not in the TRUTH; in whom there is no TRUTH, and who deceives the nations, which are in the four quarters of the earth. Again,

What is the Gospel ? The WORD of TRUTH, the word of God, the word of faith, the word of the kingdom, the word of life, and the word of falvatiox. What are Gospel-ministers! Men that bear witness to the Truth; that rightly divide the word of Truth; that are fellow-helpers to the TRUTH; that speak forth the words of TRUTH; and are valiant for the TRUTH upon the earth. -What is the preaching of the Gospel ? The manifestation of the TRUTH.-What is it to believe the gospel ? It is to receive the KNOWLEDGE of the TRUTH ; to receive the LOVE of she Truth; and to obey the TRUTH, What is it to mistake the gospel ? It is to err from the TRUTH; to turn after jables ; and to give heed to feducing fpirits, and do&rixes of devils.

What is the true Church? The pillar and ground of TX UTH, againft which the gates of hell shall aut prevail.-- What is the first fruit of fiacere repentance? The acknowledging of the TRUTH.

What are believers? Persons that are chafen to falvation thro' the unneceffitated belief of the TRUTH ; that are of the TRUTH ; that know the TRUTH; that have the 'Truth in their irward parts; that have a good report. of the TRUTH; in whom dwells the TRUTH; who have been taught the truth as it is in Jefus ; in whom is the TRUTH of Chrift; who have learned Chrift ; have purified their fouls by obeying the Truth; and walk in the TRUTH. What are unstable souls ? People ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the TRUTH, with whom the TRUTH of the gospel does not continue, and who are wilfully bewitched, that they. Should not obey, the TRUT.H. What are obstinate unbelieve s? Men of corrupt minds, deftitute of the Truth; unreasonable men, that rehf the TRUTH; that glory and lie against the TRUTH; that walk in darkness, and do not the TRUTH. What are apoftates ! Men that fix wilfully after they have received the knowledge of the T&UTH, and, inttead of repenting, count the blood of

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