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By tradition from their fathers, and on the credit of their teachers, they avowedly believe in CHRIST, and call themselves Christians; without having ever examined, or understood what they have been taught, and profess to believe; whose lives and conversations being fottish, covetous, and and profane, give the lie to their profession, and prove to a demonstration that their faith is but the faith of devils, because it is not productive of good works. This customary, traditional, and dead faitb, is common and notorious among the illiterate, and lower class of people; who had they been born in Turkey, would have been Mabometans; and in Perfia, or India, Pagans : Hence also, amongst the more inquisitive, and learned in Europe, there are not a few that renounce the Christian faith, and are not ashamed to declare themselves infidels.
Thus many who were professedly protestants in the reign of Edward the Sixth, turned papists in Queen Mary's reign, and again became protestants under Elizabeth : these men plainly thewed that their faith was not of God, nor was their religion any settled principle in the heart, but a bare profefGion founded on custom, and the manner of the times.
2. An. 2. Another dangerous error is this, wica tiis is supposed to be a "morial srt, wtih God hath left for us to do, and repairs on our sırt the performance of it, that we may be jolitica True it is, tut no man can cleale Gou, nor le justified in his fight without futh: But it is also true, that faith is not cur work, but the end of God; which when he hath wrought, we then believe, or exercile faith on Jesus CHRIST ; but it is not a conditional work lett for us to reríurm: They therefore greatly err who affirm that faith is the conchricy or CAUSE of our juft scanion.
Some ind-el very exc! nt writers, anderirent Christians, have contre 11th as th: card.ca of our justification ; but not as a werk w ; by us, nor as the cue there. i: lor .cy that is consider it, depend upon rcir own tarh, iuile cf deren og upon CHRIST; and in the room of trutting in Christ's obedience and r i ngs for their justification, they truit in their na: of taith. Iree ferions al.u are are o imagine, and maintan that fab i rano is tx.r 11: nels, upon the very fare rin and prin.is that the pap.its ....:m the bread and wine in the Luru's Supper to be the fulani wametan Cis:: Bilt the Scrigrure, on the cunt:a'y, mradi mais l'idt CHRIST is our iztecouíncis; tie si mohli C.
righteousness unto us: and faith is nothing but a believing this word of God, or trusting in Christ that we may be justified, and saved according to the promise.
If that faith whereby we are justified be a work of ours, which comes within the compass of hu. - man ability to perform, it could not be of grace;
but the Scripture testifies that it is of faith that it might be by grace; And again, we are justified freely by his grace throʻ the redemption which is in Christ's blood t. And if faith itself were our justifying righteousness, it must have fulfilled the law, and endured its curse for us, and consequently faith must be a person : but neither of these are true : for Christ, the Object, Author and Life of our faith, hath done and suffered all that God's law required of us, and is therefore our justifying righteousness before God, which we thro'grace believe, rejoicing in CHRIST as the Lord our righteousness I.
3. Some persons have erroniously represented felt confolations, joys, and extacies of foul for the faith of the Gospel. Many from hence have miftaken'a transient joy, or sensible delight in the affections, for true faith :- But this is not the faith of CHRIST; for many who have felt great joys, and made their boast of them,
have + Rom. iii. 24.
Jer, xxiü, 6.
have plairly fewed by their after words and die tions, that they neither understood or loved the line vation of God, which is in CHRIST JLSUs Our Lord.
There is a rect!dje, among religious profetturs:
1. That which is carnal, entirely founded in a mifapprehension, and deceitful imagination of the mind : In this case, the foul conceits ittelf to be
bere it is not, and alat it is not. Hence fome for a time have fancied themfives to be in CHRIST, and thar their fins were parduocd; who alternaz. have themielves aci nowicycd, and by their actif proved to others that they were grolly deceived. 1.. joy is transient, and brings forth no fruit unto pestoetion ; for ibe jog ef tbe bypaule is but for a promul.
This therefore cannot be the joy of the Lord, becauk it glories not in him, nor lives unto him. Thus tio flory ground bearers received ikuslauk jor, lucts had not in their hearts the fub of Goise.
2. There is a joy which arises from an uauerstanding, and heart-iclt periopuon of the love o: God to penthing finners thro' Chmir Jasi's.
This joy is a frusl of faith and of the Ilo: Y GHOST, and therefore is not fauch it'l. The joy alio of the children of God, is nco a live
• Gal. v. 2:.
in what I have done, nor because I am better than ocliers; but the true believer glories and rejoices only in the Lord I; and from a, consciousness of his own justified state, and interest in Christ thro' grace, he rejoices in God, to the praise of his glory.
Again; forne persons have represented faith to be a certain knowledge or persuasion that a man's fins are forgiven him; and that Christ died for him in particular. But it is clear that this also is a mistaken nocion of faith, and productive of many evils.----For,
There are some which affirm this of themselves, who in their lives and conversations are earthly, sensual, devilish; consequently their faith must be a dead faith, because it hath no good works following it. For, if we say that we have fellowship with Christ, and walk in darkness, we lie and do not the truth t: And again, be that saith. I know him, and keepeth not bis commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him. It is
Moreover, I cannot find that the Scripture any where thus describes, or defines faith : But, according to God's word, faith is a believing with ..
is incorini the
11 Cor. i 31.
Et i John i. 6.