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First, To unbelievers, who from hence must be pressed, as ever they expect to see the face of God in peace, to receive Jesus Christ, as he is now offered to them in the gospel. This is the very scope of the gospel, I shall therefore press it by three great confiderations, viz.

First, What is in Christ whom you are to receive.
Secondly, What is in the offer of Christ by the gospel.
Thirdly, What is in the rejecting of that offer.

First motive.
First, Consider well what is in Christ, whom I perfuade you
this day to receive : Did you know what is in Christ, you would
Dever neglect or reject him as you do: For,

Fird, God is in Christ,” 2 Cor, v. 19. the Deity hath chofen to dwell in his flesh; he is “God manifest in flesh,” i l'im iii. 16, a Godhead dwelling in flesh, is the world's wonder : so that in receiving Christ, you receive God himself.

Secondly, The authority of God is in Christ, Exod. xxiii. 21.

My name is in him : Him hath God the Father fealed,” Joho vi. 27. he hath the commission, the great seal of heaven to redeem and save you : All power in heaven and earth is given to him, Matth. xxviii. 18. he comes in his Father's name to you, as well as in his own name.

Thirdly, The wisdom of God is in Christ, 1 Cor. i. 24. " Christ the wisdom of God:” yea, “in him are hid all the s treasures of wisdom and knowledge,” Col. ij. 3. Never did the wisdom of God display itself before the eyes of angels and men, as it hath done in Christ.

The “angels desire to look into it," i Pet. 1. 12. yet they are not so much concerned in the project and design of this wisdom in redemption, as you are.

Fourthly, The fulness of the Spirit is in Chrift; yea, it fills him so as it never did, nor will fill any creature, John iii. 34. God giveth not the Spirit by measure to him :” all others have their limits, stints, and measures; fome more, fome less; but the Spirit is in Christ without meafure. O how lovely and desirable are those men that have a large measure of the Spirit in them! but he is anointed with the Spirit of holiness, above all his fellows, Pfal. xlv. 2, 7. Whatever grace is found in all the faints, which makes them desirable and lovely, wisdom in one, faith in another, patience in a third ; they all centre ia Christ as the rivers do in the sea, que faciunt divisa beatum, in hoc mixta fluunt.

Fifthly, The righteousness of God is in Christ, by which only a poor guilty sinner can be justified before God, 2 Cor. V. 21. we Are “ made the righteousness of God in him :" lie is 92775 1771

" the Lord our righteousness,” Jer. xxiii. 6. i.e. “* the author " of our righteouiness," or the Lord who justifies us ; by that name he will be known, and called by his people, than wbich none can be sweeter.

Sixthly, The love of God is in Christ; yea, the very yearning bowels of divine love are in him: What is Christ, but the love of God wrapt up in ficfh and blood ? 1 John iv. 9, 10." In this

was manifested the love of God towards us ;" and herein is love, that God seot his Sun: this is the highest flight that ever divine love made; and higher than this it cannot mount. 0 love, unparalleled and admirable !

Seventhly, The mercies and compassions of God are all in Chrift, Jude ver. 21. Mercy is the thing that poor Goners want, it is that they cry for at the last galp; it is the only thing that can do them good. O what would they give to find mercy in that great day? Why, if you receive Christ, you shall with him receive mercy; but out of him, there is no mercy to be expected from the hands of God; for God will never exercise mercy to the prejudice of his justice ; and it is in Christ that justice and mercy meet and embrace each other.

Eightly, To conclude, The salvations of God are in Chrift, Acts iv. 12. “ Neither is there salvation in


other." Christ is the door of falvation, and faith is the key that opens that door

If you therefore believe not, ii e. if you fo receive not Jesus Christ, as God hath offered him, you exclude yourselves from all hopes of salvation. The devils have as much ground to expect falvation as you: you see what is in Christ to induce you to receive him.

Motive 2. Next, I beseech you, consider what there is in the offer of Chtist to finners, to induce you to receive him.' Coolider well to whom, and how Christ is offered in the gospel.

First, To whom he is offered; not to the fallen angels, but to you; they lie in chains of darkness, Jade 6. as he took not their nature, so he designs not their recovery; and therefore will have no treaty at all with them: but he is offered to you, creatures of an inferior raok and order by nature; nor is he of. fered to the damned, the treaty of peace is ended with them : Christ will never make them another tender of salvation ; nor is he offered to millions of millions as good as you, now living in the world. The sound of Christ, and salvation is not come to their ears, but he is offered to you by the special favour and

to men.

* Autorem juftitiæ nostra. Calv. ia loc,

bounty of heaven ; and will you not receive him? O! then how will the devils, the damned, and the Heathens, upbraid your folly! and say, had we had one such tender of mercy, of which

you have had thousands, we would never have been cow in this place of torments.

Secondly, Consider how Christ is offered to you, and you fhall find that he is offered,

1. Freely, as the gift of God, to your souls ; you are not to purchase him, but only to receive him.

Ifa lv. 1. “Ho, every one that thirfteth, come ye to the waters, and he that hath no money, let him come,” &c.

2. Christ is offered importunately, by repeated iatreaties. 2 Cor. v. 20. As though God did beseech you, we pray you “ in Christ's stead, be ye reconciled to God.” O! what amazing condescension is here in the God of mercy! God now befeeches you, will you not yield to the intreaties of your

God? O then what wilt thou fay for thyself, when God will not hear thee, when thou shalt intreat and cry for mercy? Which brings us to

Motive 3. Consider the Tin and danger that there is in refufing, or neglecting the present offers of Christ in the gospel, and turely there is much fin in it; the very malignity of fin, and the fum of all milery, lies here; for in refufing Chrift,

1. You put the greatest contempt and fight upon all the attributes of God that it is possible for a creature to do; God hath made his justice, his mercy, his wisdom, and all his attributes, to shine in their brightest glory in Chrift. Never was there fuch a display of the glory of God made to the world in any other way.

O then, what is it to reject and despise Jesus Christ, but to offer the greatest affront to the glory of God, that it is possible for med to put upon it?

2. You hereby frustrate and evacuate the very design, and importance of the gospel to yourselves; you receive the grace “ of God in vain," 2 Cor. vi. I. As good, yea, better had it been for you, that Christ had never come inio the world, or, if he had, that your lot had fallen in the dark places of the earth, where you had never heard his name ; yea, good had it been for that man if he had never been born.

3. Hereby a man murthers his own soul. " I said therefore unto you,

you shall die in your fins; for if ye believe not that I am he, ye shall die in your fios,” John viii. 24. Unbelief is felf-murder; you are guilty of the blood of your own fouls: life and salvation was offered you, and you rejected it. Yea,


4. The refusing of Christ by unbelief, will aggravate your damnation, above all others that perish in ignorance of Chrift, ( 'twill be more tolerable for Heathens, than for you;

the greatest measures of wrath are referved to punish the worst of finners, and among finners, none will be found worse than unbelievers.

Secondly, To believers, this point is very useful to persuade them to divers excellent duties; among which, I shall fingle out two principal, ones, viz.

1. To bring up their faith of acceptance, to the faith of alfurance.

2. To bring up their conversations to the principles and rules of faith.

1. You that have received Jesus Christ truly, give yourselves no rest till you are fully satisfied that you have done fo; accep. tance brings you to heaven hereafter, but assurance will bring heaven into your souls now, O what a life of delight and pleasure doth the assured believer live! What pleasure is it to him to look back and consider where once he was, and where he now is ? To look forward, and consider where he now is, and where Thortly he shall be! I was in my lips, I am now in Christ: 1 am in Christ now, I shall be with Christ, and that for ever, after a few days. I was upon the brink of hell, I am now upon the very borders of heaven; I shall be, in a little while, among the innumerable company of angels and glorified saints, bearing part with them in the fong of Mofes, and of the Lamb, for evermore.

And why may not you, that have received Christ, receive the comfort of your union with him? There be all the grounds and helps of assurance furoished to your hand; there is a real union betwixt Christ and your fouls, which is the very ground-work of assurance. + You have the scriptures before you which contain the signs of faith, and the very things within you that answer those ligns in the word. So you read, and so, juft so, you might feel it in your own hearts, would you attend to your own ex. perience. The Spirit of God is ready to feal you, it is his of fice and his delight fo to do. Otherefore give diligence to this work, attend the study of the scriptures, and of your own hearts more, and grieve not the holy Spirit of God, and you may ar. rive to the very desire of your hearts.

+ The power and constancy of a firm hope reigns in us. Cypru. Sern. de patientis.

2. Bring up your conversations to the excellent principles and rules of faith; “ As you have received Christ Jesus the " Lord, fo walk in him," Col. in 6. Live as you believe ; you received Christ Gocerely in your first close with him, O mainin the like seriousness and sincerity in all your ways, to the end of your lives: you received him intirely and undividedly at firl, let there be no exceptions against any of his commaods afterward. You received him exclusively to all others, see that you watch against all felf-righteousness, and felf.conceitedness bow, and mingle nothiog of your own with his blood, whatever gifts or enlargements in duty God shall give you afterwards.

You received him advisedly at first, weighing and considering the felf-denying terms upon which he was offered to you; o hew that it was real, and that you fee oo cause to repeat the bargain, whatever you shall meet with in the ways of Christ, and dorg afterwards : convince the world of your constancy and chearfulness in all your sufferings for Christ, that you are still of the fame mind you were, and that Cbrift, with his cross, Chrilt, with a prison, Christ, with the greatest afflictions, is worthy of all acceptation : "As ye have received him, so walk yé " in him," Let him be as fweet, as lovely, as precious to you dow, as he was the first moment you received him, yea, let your love to him, delights in him, and self-denial for him, increase with your acquaintance with him, day by day.

Ufe of direction. Ofe. Lastly, I will close all with a few words of directions to all that are made willing to receive the Lord Jesus Chrift; and sure it is but need that help were giveä to poor Christians ; in this matter, it is a time of trouble, fear, and great temptation milakes are easily made, and of daogerous consequence; attend heedfully, therefore, to a few directionis:

Direction 1, First, In your receiving Christ, beware you do not mitake the means, for the end Many do so, but fee you do not. Prayer; fermons, reformatioos, are means to bring you to Chrilt, but they are not Chrift; to close with those duties is one thing, and to close with Christ is another thing. If I go into a boat, my design is oot to dwell there, but to be carried to the place whereon I delire to be landed : so it must be in this case, all your duties must land you upon Chrift; they are beatis to bring you to Christi

Direct. 2. Secondly, See that you receive not Chrifl for preJent help, but for your everlasting portion. Many do fo; they will enquite after Christ

, pray for Christ, cast themselves in Vol. II.


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