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implies some knowlege of the gospel offer of Clirist. This is absolutely necessary in order to our acceptance of Christ. It was not enough to set the manslayer a running to the city of refuge, that he knew there was a city that had gates open, and was sufficient to preserve him ; but moreover he must know, that it was design'd for that pur. pose, that he had warrant to enter in at these open gates, and so to expect protection. And here there are two things must of necessity be known.
.(1.) That Christ and all his benefits are indeed offered in the gospel to poor sinners, and that free ly. Hence it is that our Catechism doth thus qualify the object of saving faith, while it describes faith in Christ to be a faving grace whereby we receive and rest upon him as he is offered to us in the gospel.'.
(2.) As we must know that he is offered to us, so we must understand what the terms are wherein he is offered. That he is offered freely, doth not hinder his being offered upon terms. If one offers another a sum of money, if he will re. ceive it; he may be said to offer it upon terms, and yet to offer it freely; and just such are the Gospel terms upon which the Lord Christ is offered ; whoever will take him and use him, shall have him. But to be a little more particular, here 'we may learn what these terms are, from that of the Apostle, Phil. iii. 3. For we are the circumcifion which worship God in the spirit, and rejoice in Christ Jefus, and have 110 confidence in the flesh.
These are the persons who have an interest in · Christ, who come up to these terms: And
the knowledge of them is necessarily implied in believing. We must know that upon these and no other terms may we be saved. (1.) We mult
know that all confidence in the flesh is intirely to
4th Thing implied in believing, and that is, the
relief relief from any of these things corrupt nature is wont to incline us to rely on. The soul's motion to Jesus Christ, is a motion from all other things. The soul that rolls the weight of all over upon him, doth not lean to any thing besides him. All the expressions formerly opened up, do fufficiently intimate to us, that this renunciaron of all confidence in other things belongs to the nature of faith, and must go to the constitution of it: and the fame the 'Scripture plainly enough declares, when it exprelly enjoins sinners this, as a part of their duty, or rather expresses the whole of this duty by it; Ashur shall not save us, we will not ride upon horfes, nor will we say any more to the work of our hands, Ye are our gods : In vain is faluation looked for from the hills, and from the multitude of mountains, fåys the returning church, Hof. xiv. 3. and Jer. iii. 23. And these two texts are a good commentary upon that forecited expression of the apostle, and have no confidence in the flesh. To have no confidence in the Aeth, is to expect no salvation from the hills and multitude of mountains, from Afhur, from horses, or the work of our own hands. ; ' . But that I may be a little more particular, faith for believing has in it an express renunciation (1.) Of our own wisdom., Carnal Man is exceedingly inclined to trust to his own fleshly wisdom, which is enmity against God, and to advance this as of use to direct him to true happiness. This was that which befool'd the heathen world: They thought by their own wisdom to reach happiness, to know God. But in the wisdom of God, the world by wisdom knew not God; and the believe er becomes a fool that he may be wise, perfectly
renouncing his own wisdom, and subscribing him. self a fool, owning-himself, with wise Agur, more
brutish than any Man. (2.) Believing has in it à renunciation of our own strength and power. Man is conceited exceedingly of his own ability. As long as man has a leg of his own to walk upon, he is sure never to look near Christ Jefus. But no sooner has he a mind for Christ, but presently, he confesses his own impotency. If the man be able to stand alone, what means he to lean upon another? If he be able to bear his burden, what needs he roll it over upon another?. (3) Believing has in it a renunciation of 'man's own righteoufness. The natural man goes about with the carnal Jews, who were ignorant of the righteoufness of God, to establish his own righteousness, not submitting to the righteousness of God: But the believer rejects this, and owns with the church, Ifa. lxiv. 6. We are as an unclean thing, and all our righteousness are as filthy rags. The believer sees his righteousness all ragged. He sees, here one duty wanting, and there another entirely a missing,, which makes his righteousness no better than a ragged coat, which is full of holes: And he sees what remains to be all defiled; there is some wanting, and what is not so is filthy. The best fall short of, and are entirely deficient as to the practice of fome duties; and filthiness adheres and cleaves to what they do perform : Therefore they renounce their own righteousness. (4.) Believing
or faith in Christ renounces all foreign relief, I .. mean relief from other things besides Christ, It will not trust to privileges, to saints, to any creature. If any would entice believing sinners to follow any other, then faith answers the tempter as Peter did our Lord, in an address to Christ him- : lelf, To whom shall we go, thou hast the words of eternal life ? Now all these things are compre
will o. If any er, then
hended in that of the apostle, Having no confidence in the flesh : And therefore we find him rejecting his own wisdom, for the excellency of the knowlege of Christ Jesus, rejecting his own strength, for acquaintance with the power and efficacy of Christ's death, renouncing his own righteousness, that he might be found in Christ; and counting all the privileges he had as one of Abraham's chile dren, one in covenant with God, one of the strictest sect of the Jews, to be but loss and dung for an interest in Christ. . (2.) There is in believing on Christ, a consent of will to the terms of the gospel as good and desireable. And who can refuse this fave such as are blind? The Gospel terms may be reduced, as has been hinted just now, to three. (1.) Seek not falvation from that which cannot save you. Have no confidence in the flesh. (2.) Take freely, whatever ye need. Need ye righteousness, or need ye strength, or need ye wisdom, or redemption. All these ye may have freely in Christ, who is made of God to all them that believe, wisdom, righteousness, sanctification and redemption; in whom all believers have righteousness and strength; in whom all the feed of Israel by this means, thall be justified and glorified. This is to rejoice in Christ Jesus. (3.) Lay out and improve what ye receive. Ye are not bid spin a web out of your own bowels; but ye are bid improve what's given to you. Yë are bid worship God in spirit; ay, but 'tis by the assistance and direction of the fpirit that's given freely. The will closes with these terms as good and agreeable : And who could refuse to do so, were there not in him the carnal mind that's enmity against God? The
mind that is within coda world can conceive nothing more reasonable, no