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Administration of Baptism, the Holy Communion, and Isa. 40. other preparatory Duties; as it is written, Prepare ye 5. the Way of the LORD, make straight in the Desert a high '. Way for our .God. • .. (
So Light is more transparent in refined Bodies, than in grosser Pieces of the Earth: Therefore, fays our blessed Saviour, He that hath my Commandments, and Joh.14. keepeth them, he it is that loveth me: and he 'that loveth 20. , me, shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and will manifest my self to him. • .'« • - .1 Blessed are the pare in Heart, for they shall fie
God, :. ;;; '•. .'
Sometimes again, these Revelations may, be sudden and surprising by strange, and unusual Ways j as in the Conversion of St. Paul, when suddenly there shined round about him a Light from Heaven, above the Brightness of the Sun,, that he could not see these that journeyed with him for the Glory of that Light: So "that every Revelation hath its Degrees and Seasons, its different Ways of appearing and. withdrawing. 'The Wind blowethwhere it listet\ arid thou hear est the John 3; found thereof, but.jja'nst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth : . so is every one that is born of the Spirit. '*;
As when the blind Man' in the Gospel, whom our blessed Saviour cured of his Blindness, first faw.Men as 'Trees walking, but dimly, then more distinctly he saw every Man clearly. . . .
Again, in EzekiePs Visidrr, the Spirit of the Lord, the Glory of the God of Israel, ( when he was provoked 'Lwith the Spirit of Jealousie, and all the Abominations Ezek. tjiat wei.g wr0ught there) removed by Degrees, first: ....», *l. 1 from the Cherub to the Threshold of the House,. from V thence to' th*. midst of the City, and then to the - Mountain on the East Side of the City 1 So unwilling
. the Lord is to leave us until there be no Remedy, and wilfully we leave him, as these wicked Jews did" wherefore the Lord destroyed them and their Temple in like manner; if any defile this mystical Temple with fleshly Lusts and spiritual Wickedness, the Lord will destroy him; as it is written, Kjiow ye not th^ ye.are. the, Temple of God, and that the Spirit of God* divert ft in11 ^or. you': If any Man defile the Temple of God, htm faff .1**. 17. God destroy, for the Temple of God isHoly, which Tempi,'' ye are. . ... ..r. . ''."j . "• •> >.
Now, that we may grow lip unto an holy T.ehip(e in the Lord, fee how the Apostle consecrates this' mystical Building, and all the Courts thereof, as Solomon' T, did his Temple: The very. God of Peace (fays he ) 1 "e .fantfife you wholly, and I pray God your whole Spirit, and^'^l' Soul, and Body be preserved blameless unto the coming op our Lord Jesus Chrifi.
Next, let us consider how necessary and useful, how edifying and comfortable this inward Light and Lise is, T . without which we are spiritually dead, and differ no-, 4 311 tiling from the Beasts of the Earth, or the Fowls of 'tlie: Air: It is the Spirit that quickeneth us, and enlightens^ us when we fit in Darkness, and in the Shadow of I )n^' Death; as he hath faid, that he would dwell in the thick Darkness; that is in the Mind of Man, and make p. all his Paths as the shining Light that shineth more and !jov'4* more unto the persect Day. '"V ' . *o*
Therefore the Psalmist prays, Teach me to do thy Will, pr for thou art my God: Thy Spirit is, good,. lead me into the Land of Uprightness. Quicken me, .0 LOR D, for thy'19> 11"" Names fake: for thy Righteousness fake bring "my Soul[out. of Trouble, and out oj Darkness. . ': "i .."V.rjl.r , . ;•: :'/.",«* ^ ;, The'Mysteries of the Gospel'are so High* so Tram** ..' cendent above Nature, that'till the Faculties.of the Soul be elevated and enlightned, purged from all.sinful Lusts
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.. and. Passions, . which are the only Vail that covens these.
• Glories, and mates them seem Dark and at a Distance as when the Earth, or some dark Cloud hides the Light, and interpose betwixt us and the Sun, that if the Question w^e demanded of us, Understandye what ye> read? J/Veliad the fame Ingenuity, we would return the E***^'s Answer, How can me, except some guide us ?. Except the good Spirit of the Lord enlighten our tjnderst<nding,,purine us from all Filthinefs of the Flesh, and our own corrupt Spirits, and lead us into all TruthV
No Maw .knoweth the Father hut the Son, and he to whom the Son revealeth him y as hie said to St. Peter, when he confessed him to be the Christ the Son of the living Lord, Blessed art thou, Simon Barjona, for Flesh and Blood hath not revealed it to thee, but my Father which is in Heaven., , .••,.«., . \ '. '. . .:
As the Sun cannot be seen without his own Light, so, neither can thfc Father of Lights be known without tha. Light of his own Spirit: No Man can fay that Jesus., i Cor. i§ the Lord, his Lord, and his God sincerely, so as ]p 12. 3. love and obey him, but by the Holy Ghost. But God hath revealed these these Things unto us by his Spirit: • For. 1 Cor. the Spirit searchesh all things, yea the deep .'Things of 2, Jo. God. •»• r
It concerns us very much to consider by whom we are guided, every one is led by fpme^plrit, but eVery
• -: one is not led by the good Spirit of God: Therefore
we arc commanded to try, the Spirits, whether they be of 1 John God, because many false Prophets are gone out into the j. 11. World.
Te shall know them by their Fruits, ( fays our blessed Matth. Saviour) that is, by their Doctrines and by their Doings,. 7. 16. as the SouLis known to dwell in the Body by vital and
sensible Actions, so the Holy Spirit is known to dwell C 113 3
Jit the Soul by spiritual Operations, and the gracious
We may see as great Difference betwixt the Works of the. Spirit and die Works of. the Flesh, as betwixt. Light and Dark.nes?, ,: ;.;
: The Apostle reckons up some of the one, and some of the other in tber Fifth to the G'alatians 5 Now tbe*Wor.ks 'of 'the .Fhfb' tre. manifest,., which are these, Adultery, Formcuion, Dmleanness, Lascivioufness, IdolAtrj^Witchcraft, Hatred, Variance, Emulation, Wrath, Strife, Seditions, Herefcs, Envying, Drunkenness, Murders, and fifth like,: of tke'whioh 1 tell you before^ as I have alfa tvldycu in limes .'safe ' that they .which'.do' such' Th'tfigS, shall not in far it. she KJngdom ofGock - : "u ,» . •.
But the Fruit of. the Spirit u Love, Joy, Peace, Longsuffering, Gentleness, Goodness, Faith, Meekness, Temperance: against such there is no Law.. And they that are. ,\ »r Chris? s, have crucified the,Flesh, with'the'Affections and Lusts. '•' "J .'.Cv. 'c
But especially weave concerned to try our own State, ., K /' fixamine your selves, ( fays the Apostle ) whether ye. be i» 'f\..' the Faith; prove your awn> selves, know ye .not your own I'Cor. selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be Repro- 13. 5; bates. The Spirit of Man^ fays the wise Kings 'is the. Prov. Candle of the LORD^ searching all the inward Parts.' . . 20. 27.
Few or none ave so Weak and Ignorant, but' may, if they be willing, know their spiritual State ,: ^F6r4i3 .0s she Apostle argues, When the .Gentiles, which nvf. R6rr}»2 the Law, do by Nature the Things contained in the Law, 14, 15. these having not the Law, are a Law unto themselves, which show the Work of the Law written in their sfearts^'.vi ;,», their Conscience also bearing Witness, and their Thoughts in the mean while accusing or else excusing one another.. So the Holy Spirit himself beareth Witness with our Spirii that we are the Children of God. \' . '.".uy
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. As m the State of Nature, every healthful Man may" know that he is in Health: So in the State of Grace . every good Man may know that he is led .by the good Spirit of God, and if he have not the Certainty of Evidence, yet he may have that of Adherence, as in a . • . dry State, when a Christian may wrestle long with the Terrors of the Lord, and be deserted a while for the Punishment of his Sins, or the Exercise of his Graces, crying, as Christ did upon the Cross, My God, my God, Matth. w"y h*st *hou forf^en me Yet even m this fad State • 27 4.6* C which nevertheless may be more sure, though not so • 'comfortable as a melting State, .when the Heart is soft by Complexion or. Sufsering) we must not despair1, but
Micah wa*c Patient^y on tne Lord, who will be a Light unto us when we sit in Darkness.
. 1 hough the Vision tarry, wait for it, faith the Prophet,
Hab 2 ** *>&furth come '• As 11 is written, •
Tet now hear, 0 Jacob my Servant, and Israel whom I have chosen..
Ifa Aa. Th'tis faith the LORD that made thee, and formed thee I 22 from ^om^ wbicb %vltt help thee, Fear nott 0 Jacob, '' my Servant, and thou Jesurun, whom I have chosen.
.i For I willfour'Water upon him that is thirfty, and Floods 'upon the dry Ground: I will pour my Spirit upon thy Seed, and my Bleffing upon thine Off-spring.
Who is among you that feareth the LORD, that obeyeth lfa» <0. *he Voice of his servant, that walketh in Darkness, and I<?* :hath no Light? Let him trust in the Name of the LORD\ and flay upon his God, ...
And again, thus faith the Lord, For a small Moment Ifa. 54. bAve 1 forfaken thee, but with great Mercies will J gather 7, 8cc. fhee.
In a little Wrath I hid my Faces om thee, for a Moments hut with everlasting. Kjndnefs will I have Mercy on thee, faith the LORD thy Redeemer.
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