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And fhall God manifeft his truth, in conjunction with mercy towards you; and will you not be a friend to truth, even to all the precious truths of his gofpel? Shall not truth, in oppofition to hypocrify, be your study; and truth, in oppofition to error, be your concern; and this truth, in conjunction with mercy? For, when truth is in any hazard, fhould not mercy to your own foul, and the fouls of others, make you zealous for it? And mercy to your children and the generation that is to come after you, on whom we show no mercy, if truth be not transmitted purely to them, as it was by our forefathers to us, at the expence of their blood, however now the waters of the fanctuary are troubled. Again, does righteousness and peace look down from heaven, kindly embracing each other in your behalf, believer? And fhall not you be a student of righteousness, in oppofition to all unrighteous and unholy ways; and of peace, in oppofition to contention and difcord? As much as poffible, follow peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall fee the Lord. Does God glorify his righteousness towards you; and will you study no righteoufnefs in your converfation towards God and man? Does God fpeak peace to you, and will you be at war with him, and love to live in war with any of his? Shall that be the difpofition of any, with whom God is at peace? O tell it not in Gath! Surely there are none here, that have tasted of this sweet peace of God, but they would defire to live at peace with all men, and particularly all the faints. They would defire to fee all the honeft minifters of Scotland meeting together more kindly than they do, and embracing each other. Some indeed are at this time reproached as
enemies to peace in the church; but the matter is, peace must not be ftudied feparately from righteousness, nor mercy feparately from truth, but all as meeting and embracing one another: For mercy and peace, without truth and righteoufnefs, is a cruel confpiracy against God and man. Now, certain things have paft concerning the truths of God, and the righteoufnefs of Chrift, in our day, which fome think will ftand infamous till doom's-day; and, this truth and righteoufnefs being the great minifterial truft, fome chufed rather to be reproached by the world as enemies to peace, than be challenged by God and their own confcience as betrayers of the truft. However, O believer, ftudy you thro' grace to get a match made up betwixt mercy and truth, righteousness and peace in you, feeing there can be no merciful peace to the prejudice of righteous truth: And ftudy to get all thefe attributes of God exemplified in your heart and life, and the feal and imprefs thereof upon your foul, you being united to Chrift, in whom all these glorious excellencies of God do meet together with harmonious embracements. Out of Chrift's fulness do you receive, and grace for grace. As the child receives member for member from the father, and the paper letter for letter from the prefs; fo, beholding his glory, be you changed into the fame image, by receiving mercy for mercy, truth for truth, righteousness for righteoufnefs, and peace for peace: Out of his fulness do you receive grace for grace, holiness for holiness, and an holy virtue fuitable to every holy perfection that is in him, and all these harmoniously meeting together and kiffing each other in you: Let no heavenly grace or holy duty be excluded out of the meeting: Let faith and repentance
repentance meet together, let love and new obedience kifs each other; let knowledge and prac tice meet together, and prayer and praises embrace each other. Yea, let oppofite-like graces meet harmoniously in you; let humility and boldness meet together, let godly forrow and holy joy embrace each other. Here is the gofpel-holinefs we call you to, in a fuitableness to thefe harmonious attributes of God in Chrift: If the world call you Antinomians, know it is the will of God,, that by well-doing you put to filence the ignorance of foolish men, 1 Pet. ii. 15. Let the mouth that reproaches the gospel be ftopt by the power of it in your walk. The world will furely reckon you the greatest stars, that give the greateft light: Therefore let your light fo fhine before men, that others feeing your good works may glorify God; even the works of mercy and truth, righteoufnefs and peace, hand in hand together; And thus, for the fake of the glory of God, the honour of Chrift, and the credit of the gofpel, let the world know, that you have seen the glory, and felt the virtue of these perfections of God, harmoniously meeting and embracing each other in Christ. Here is your duty and work, believer, in the wildernefs; and now, in all your fhortcomings therein, ftill look again to God's holy temple, to Chrift the meeting-place of thefe divine perfections: This is the mercy-feat, of which God fays, Exod. xxv. 22. There will I meet with thee, and commune with thee from between the Cherubims. And every new meeting with God there, will bring in new ftrength for all your work and warfare in time, till God and you meet together, and embrace one another, in glory through eternity?
And now, believer, I know you would defire that others should fhare of the fame happinefs with you; and therefore pray that a fhort concluding word may be bleffed with power to thousands that hear me. O ye that are by-ftanders and bearers only, in whatever corner of this houfe round about me, whether you be in my view or not, you are in God's view; and I have a word from him to you all And, as I have told you what a terrible thing it is to live and die in unbelief with respect to this glorious device, fo now I would tell you your duty in this matter, and how you may fhare of the bleffings and benefits, in time and for ever, that flow from this glorious meeting and embracement; and it is by kiffing the Son of God, in whom all these attributes of God do kifs and embrace each other, Pfal. ii. 12. Kifs the Son, left he be angry, and ye perish from the way, when his wrath is kindled but a little: Bleffed are all they that trust in him. Bleffed are all they that kifs and embrace him. Would you then share of the grace and glory that iffue from this wonderful meeting, and ineffable embracement among the divine perfections, in Chrift the Son of God? O then, come and kifs the Son: O down, down with carnal thoughts, carnal kiffing, carroufing, and cajolling; here, here is an object worthy of the most endeared embraces of the immortal foul. O come, and kifs the Son, by believing in him, and applying the benefits of this glorious tranfac tion to yourself: And, be who you will, if you kifs and embrace the Son, you will find thefe glorious attributes of God kiffing and embracing you, and hugging you in their arms, as a darling of heaven, and a fpecial favourite in the house of God.
Are the attributes of God embracing one another in Chrift? O flee into their embraces, by fleeing into Chrift, Say not, Chrift is in heaven, how shall I embrace him? For the word is nigh, even in your mouth, and in your heart, Rom. x. 8. 9. d. So near is he in this word, that you may kifs him with your mouth, as it were, and embrace him in your heart; and to take in his word of grace, and Chrift in it, is to embrace him. What do you fay againft Chrift? Are you afraid that truth and righteousness confpire against you, and hinder mercy and peace from ever meeting with you, and embracing you? Ono, fear not; only believe, that mercy and truth are met together, and that righteousness and peace bave killed each other in Chrift, Truth will not ftand in the way of mercy; for they have met together: Righteousness will not ftand in the way of peace; for they have kiffed each other. He is indeed an infinitely juft God, to take vengeance upon fin; but juftice will not hinder mercy from coming to you: Only believe that juftice and mercy are reconciled in Chrift, fo as mercy can vent itfelf towards you, to the credit of justice. But O! may fuch a black-mouthed finner as I, as black as hell and the devil, expect a kifs of fuch an infinitely fair Jefus? Is that to be expected, that fuch oppofites fhould meet in one another's arms? Yet, allow me, though a black finner like yourself, to be the happy meffenger, to tell you in God's name, that, be you as black as you will, fuch a meeting and embracing betwixt Chrift and you, is more to be expected, than ever men or angels could have expected that infinite juftice and mercy should have met together, and kiffed each other in a God-man; and this unexpected meeting is the very ground