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are ante. strictly fo called; as the knowledge of revealed cedent,
truth, to which some excellent divines add a pious some consequent,
affection of the will towards God; that other acts and some belong to the very form or essence of faith, as affent, formal.
hunger and thirit after righteousness, the receiving
widely differs from faving faith, which we have thus called.
far described. They call an historical faith a naked
read without any affection, emotion and application. It had therefore been better to call this faich theoretic or a naked assent.
XXIX. Our Lord Mat. 13. 21. Calls that a Temporatemporary faith, which, besides that general assent, ry faith,
. exults in the known and acknowledged truth, makes profession thereof, and stirs up many emotions in the heart and actions in the life, which exhibit fome appearance of piecy; but for a time only, while every thing is profperous under the Gospel ; but falls off
, when the storms of persecution affault it. This is wisely called by our Lord opéexceso tempotary or for a while. But as it may, and even does, frequently happen, that, in the prosperous state of the church, men may persevere to the end of their life in this profession of faith and imaginary joy, and in such a course of life, as they suppose to be fufficient for the purposes of piety; ss this being a constant but not faving, is not so properly called temporary faith, that being the title, which our Lord only gave to the faith of Apoftates. We might rather perhaps better call it a presumptuous faith.
XXX. But it is needful for our confolation, that Differs we distinctly know, how this may be distinguished from favfrom a true, lively and saving faith, which it boldly, 1. In the
. though falsely, refembles. And first, there is no acknowa small difference in the acknowledgement of revealed ledment truths; to which, as to truths, this presumptuous of the faith really assents, but as it is deftitute of the true
truth. light of the spirit, it fees not the proper form or beauty of thefe truths, and as they are truths in Chrift; it does not observe the perfections of God shining in them; does not rightly estimate their value: when it begins first to know chem, it is indeed taken, with the novelty, and rarity of them, but neither burns with an ardent love to them; nor labours much to have them, not only impressed upon the soul, but also expressed in the life and conversation : and as often as other things present themselves to the mind,
which flatter it with a great pretended shew of pleafure, or profit, it easily suffers the ideas of those truths, which oppose that advantage, to be blotted out, and almost wishes, these were no truths, which, in spite of itself, it is constrained to acknowledge for fuch. But these things are quite the reverse in true
faith, as we shewed, Thes. XVII. 2. In the XXXI. Secondly. There is a great difference in the applica., application of the promises of the Gospel. For, prepromises fumptuous faith does not proceed in the right method:
it rashly imagines, that the salvation, promised in the Gospel. Gospel, belongs to itself; but this is either upon no
foundation, or upon a false one. For, sometimes these persons, without any trial, or self-examination, which they avoid as too troublesome, and inconvenient to their affairs, foolishly Aattering themselves, proudly lay claim to the grace of our Lord; and securely number in this vain dream, without either enquiring, or being willing to enquire, what foundation they have for this their imagination. Sometimes again they lay for a foundation of their confidence, either that perverse notion concerning the general mercy of God, and easy way to heaven, of which nothing, that I know of, is mentioned in the Gospel covenant'; or an opinion of the fufficiency of their own holiness, because they are not so very vicious as the most profligate: or the external communion of the church in religious worship; or the security of their sleeping conscience, and the pleasing fancies of their own dreams, which they take for the peace of God and the confolation of the Holy Spirit. With these and the like vanities of their own imagination they deceive themselves, as if these things were sufficient marks of grace. But true believers, from a deep sense of their misery, panting after the grace of the Lord Jesus, and laying hold of it with a trembling humility, dare not boast of it, as already theirs, till, after a diligent fcrutiny, they have found certain and infallible evidences of grace in themselves. It is with a profound
humility, a kind of sacred dread, and a sincere selfdenial that they approach to lay hold on the grace of Chrift. Nor do they boast of having laid hold of this, till, after an exact examination, first of the marks of grace,
and then of their own hearts. But it is others wise in both these respects with presumptuous persons; who rafhly lay hold on what is not offered them in that order (for, God does not offer security and joy to finners, before the soul is affected with forrow for the guilt of his past fins, and a due solicitude about salvation) and then presumptuously boast of their having laid hold on grace ; but they cannot produce any necessary arguments to make the same appear. 1.
XXXII. The third difference consists in that joy, 3. In joy. which accompanies or follows both forts of faith, and that is twofold; ift, In respect to the rise. 2dly, In respect of the effect of that joy. In presumptuous faith, joy arises partly from the novelty and rarity of the things revealed (for the knowledge of a truth, which is more rare and abstruse gives delight to the understanding; as the enjoyment of a good does to the will) partly from that vain imagination, that the good things offered in the Gospel, belong to them; of which they have, from the common gifts of the Holy Spirit, fome kind of taste, but a very superficial one, affecting only the outside of their lips." But in a living faith, there arises a joy much more noble and folid, from a love of those most precious truths, by the knowledge of which the soul, taught of God, rightly esteems itself most happy; from a hope that maketh not ashamed, and a sure persuasion of its own spirit, with the super-added testimony of the divine spirit concerning the present grace of God and future glory; and lastly, from a moft sweet sense of present grace, and a real foretaste of future glory. and as the causes of both these joys are fo diverse, no wonder, tho' the effects are very different too. The first makes the foul full of itself, leaves it empty of the love of God, and, by a vain tickling of its own ima. gination, heightens the sleep of carnal security. But
4. In the
the latter strikes believers with an incredible admiration of the unmerited philanthropy, or love of God to man, infames them with a inutual return of love to the most kind and bountiful Jesus, and inspires them with a sollicitous care, left they commit any thing unworthy of that in nite favour of God, or grieve the spirit of grace, who hath dealt kindly with them.
XXXIII. The fourth difference consists in the fruits fruits. For, presumptuous faith either sinks men in
the deep sleep of security, which they encrease by indulging the flesh; or brings with it some outward change of conduct for the better, and makes them, in a certain measure, to escape the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, 2 Pet, 2. 20; or when it operates in the brightest manner, it excites fome Night and vanishing purposes, and endeavours after a stricter piery, but does not purify the heart itself, nor introduce new habits of holiness; and whenever either the allurements of the world and fesh, or some inconveniences attending Gospel piety, assault them more strongly than usual, they immediately grow weary in that course of goodness they had entered upon, and return as swine that were washed, to their wallowing in the mire. By that superficial knowledge of evangelical truth, and of a good, so pleasing and useful, as well as honorable, which is held forth by the Gospel, and which is not deeply imprinted on their minds, they are, indeed, stirred up to some amendment of life : but when the matter Itands either upon the acquisițion of some present good, or the avoiding fome imminentcalamity, the ideas of true and of good, which the Gospel had suggested to them, are so obliterated and defaced, that they prefer the obtaining a present pleasure or advantage, or the avoiding a present im pending evil, to all the promises of the Gospel and all evangelical piety. But a living faith in preffes on the soul, in such deep characters, the image of what is right and good, that it accounts nothing more