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heathen morality, but 6 the keeping the commandments of God;" particularly those, “ Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and thy neighbour as thyself.” In a word, holiness is, the having “ the mind that was in Christ,” and the 6 walking as Christ walked.”
18. Such has been my judgment for these threescore years, without any material alteration. Only about fifty years ágo, I had a clearer view than before, of Justification by Faith: and in this, from that very hour I never varied, no not an hair's breadth. Nevertheless an ingenious man has publicly accused me of a thousand variations. I pray God, not to lay this to his charge ! I am now on the borders of the grave, but by the grace of God, I still witness the same confession. Indeed some have supposed, that when I began to declare, “By grace ye are saved, through faith," I retracted what I had before maintained, “ Without holiness no man shall see the Lord.” But it is an entire mistake: these scriptures, well consist with each other: the meaning of the former being plainly this, By faith we are saved from sin, and made holy. The imaginanation that faith supersedes holiness, is the marrow of Antinomianism.
19. The sum of all is this : The God of Love is willing to save all the souls that he has made. This he has proclaimed to them in his word, together with the terms of salvation, revealed by the Son of his Love, who gave his own life, that they that believe in him might have everlasting life. And for these he has prepared a kingdom, from the foundation of the world. But he will not force them to accept of it: he leaves them in the hands of their own counsel; he saith, “ Behold I set before you life and death; blessing and cursing; choose life that ye may live.” Choose holiness by my grace, which is the way, the only way to everlasting Life.” He cries aloud, Be holy, and be happy; happy in this world, and happy in the world to come. “Holiness becometh his house for ever!” This is the Wedding Garment of all that are called to “ the Marriage of the Lamb ;' clothed in this, they will not be found naked : “ They have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.” But as to all those who appear in the last Day without the Wedding Garment, the Judge will say, “ Cast them into outer darkness; there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.”
HUMAN LIFE A DREAM.
Psalm LXXIII. 20. “ Even like as a Dream when one awaketh, so shalt thou
make their Image to vanish out of the City.”
1. ANY one that considers the foregoing verses, will easily observe, that the Psalmist is speaking directly of the wicked, that prosper in their wickedness. It is very common for these, utterly to forget that they are creatures of a day: to live as if they were never to die: as if their present state was to endure for ever : or, at least, as if they were indisputably sure, that they had much goods laid up for many years:" so that they might safely say, “ Soul, take thine ease; eat, drink, and be merry.” But how miserable a mistake is this ! How often does God say to such a one, « Thou fool! This night shall thy soul be required of thee!” Well then may it be said of them, 60, how suddenly do they consume,--perish, and come to a fearful end ! Yea, even like as a dream when one awaketh, so shalt thou make their image to vanish out of the city.”
2. But I would at present carry this thought farther: I would consider it in a general sense, and show how near a resemblance there is between human life and a dream. An ancient Poet carries the comparison farther still, when he
stiles life « the dream of a shadow.” And so does Cowley, when he cries out,
« O Life, thou nothing's younger brother,
So like, that we mistake the one for the other.” But setting these and all other flights of poetry aside, I would seriously inquire, wherein this resemblance lies, wherein the analogy between the one and the other does properly consist.
3. In order to this, I would inquire first, What is a Dream? You will say, « Who does not know this ?” Might you not rather say, Who does know? Is there any thing more mysterious in nature? Who is there that has not experienced it, that has not dreamed a thousand times ? Yet he is no more able to explain the nature of it, than he is to grasp the skies. Who can give any clear, satisfactory account of the parent of dreams, Sleep? It is true, many physicians have attempted this : but they have attempted it in vain. They have talked learnedly about it; but have left the matter at last just as dark as it was before. They tell us some of its properties and effects. But none can tell what is the essence of it.
4. However, we know the origin of dreams, and that with some degree of certainty. There can be no doubt, but some of them arise from the present constitution of the body, while others of them are probably occasioned by the passions of the mind. Again, we are clearly informed in Scripture, that some are caused by the operation of good angels: as others undoubtedly are owing to the power and malice of evil angels. (If we may dare to suppose, that there are any such now, or at least that they have any thing to do in the world !) From the same divine treasury of knowledge we learn, that on some extraordinary occasions, the Great Father of Spirits has manifested himself to human spirits, “ In dreams and visions of the night.” But which of all these arise from natural, which from supernatural influence, we are many times not able to determine.
5. And how can we certainly distinguish between our dreams and our waking thoughts ? What criterion is there by which we may surely know, whether we are awake or asleep? It is true, as soon as we awake out of sleep, we 'know we have been in a dream and are now awake. But how shall we know that a dream is such, while we continue therein? What is a dream ? To give a gross and superficial, not a philosophical account of it: It is a series of persons and things presented to our mind in sleep, which have no being but in our own imagination. A dream, therefore, is a kind of digression from our real life. It seems to be an Echo, of what was said or done when we were awake. Or, may we say, a dream is a fragment of life, broken off at both ends, not connected, either with the part that goes before, or with that which follows after ? And is there any better way of distinguishing our dreams from our waking thoughts, than by this very circumstance? It is a kind of parenthesis, inserted in life, as that is in a discourse which goes on equally well either with it, or without it. By this then we may infallibly know a dream, by its being broken off at both ends ; by its having no proper connection with the real things, which either precede or follow it.
6. It is not needful to prove, that there is a near resemblance between these transient dreams, and the dream of life. It may be of more use to illustrate this important, truth, to place it in as striking a light as possible. Let us then seriously consider, in a few obvious particulars, the case of one that is just awaking out of life, and opening his eyes in eternity.
7. Let us then propose the case. Let us suppose we had now before us, one, that was just passed into the world of spirits. Might not you address such a new-born soul in some such manner as this? You have been an inhabitant of earth, forty, perhaps fifty or sixty years. But now God has uttered his voice, “ Awake, thou that sleepest !” You awake, you arise: you have no more to do with these poor transient shadows. Arise and shake thyself from the dust! See, all is real here! All is permanent, all eternal! Far more stable than the foundations of the earth; yea, than the pillars of the lower heaven. Now that your eyes are