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sel of God. He shunned not to declare to the Ephesians in that forecited scripture, Acts xx. 21. He testified to all persons, Jews and Greeks, repentance towards God (i. e. that they were guilty of such offences against God, as called for deep humiliation) and faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ, that is, that there was no way of escaping the wrath of God, but that of closing with Christ by faith. This is the matter of the gospel : and Christ's servants are to make it their business faithfully to unfold the mind of God in reference. to these two, man's state by nature, and what he may by grace be advanced to. . This is called, i Tim. v. 17. a labouring in the word and doctrine.

This preaching of the gospel takes in three things. 1. A full proposal of the doctrine just now mentioned. Ministers must, without minching the matter, plainly discover to men their loft state, and the impossibility of recovery any other way than by the gospel method, through Jesus Christ, Acts xx. 21. 2. They must discover these things, not as their private sentiments built upon some rational conclusions of their own draw. ing and framing, but as the word of God. It is the word of God they are to propose, and not their own private opinions; and it is the word of "God hearers are to receive from them, i Thess. ii. 13. For this cause also thank we God, faith the apostle, without ceasing, because when ye received the word of God, which ye heard of us, ye receive ed it not as the word of men, but (as it is in truth) the word of God, which effectually worketh. also in you that believe. 3. This preaching of the word takes in not only a proposal of the word of God, but an authoritative declaration of it by virtue of a commission derived from God. These i ! A 3:

things i. things speak, and eschort, and rebuke with all au. thority, Tit. ii. 15. The word in the first language may be rendered command with alt command. Ministers are clothed with authority from God, and in his name, by virtue of a commission received from him, they are to preach the gospel, and to speak the counsel of God, as being his mouth to the people, i Pet. iv. II. This is the principal part of the ministers work, and therefore to hear the word of God from them in this manner should be the great design of these who call a gospel minister, that they may hear from them as the mouth of God, what by nature they are, and what through the grace of God in Christ Jesus they may be. But now, . ..

2. When a people call a gospel minister, they should design the regular and orderly performance of the worship of God. This worship of God, as it is contradistinguished from the doctrine of the gospel, of which under the former head, consists principally in the administration of the facra. ments and prayer, public prayer, I mean, under which praises are comprehended, as belonging to, and always to be joined with it, according to our blessed Lord's appointment in that form, com. monly called the LORD'S PRAYER, which concludes with thanksgiving. In that iid of the Acts 42. we have an account of the public worship of the church, which consists in preaching, there expressed by doctrine, and breaking of bread, that is, adminiftering the sacrament of the Lord's supper, and prayers and praises. And they, faith the spirit of God speaking of the church, continued in the apostle's doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers. And ver, 47. Praising God. The celebration of the

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facraments, public prayers and praises, are divine institutions for the salvation and edification of the church, which cannot be gone about or orderly performed without a gospel ministry, who only have commission to celebrate the facraments, and to be the mouth of the people to God, in their public affemblies, being furnished with spiritual gifts for the work, Matth. xxviii. 19. 1 Cor. xi. 23. and xiv. 16. And therefore, when a people call a gospel minister, they should have this in view, as one great design, that thereby they may have the gofpel worship celebrated among them in all its parts, according to Christ's institution, to their spiritual advantage, and his glory.

3. They should call a gospel minister to rule over them. This is one part of the minister's work, to rule over his flock, 1. Tim. v. 17. Let the elders that rule well, be counted worthy of double honour, especially they who labour in the word and doctrine. This superiority which go. spel ministers have, is not a lordly dominion either over the persons or faith of their flock. No, any thing of this sort that ever crept into the church, had its rife from the subtilty of Satan, who envied its peace, and is directly opposite to the gospel, which forbids lordly dominion, the gospel ministers authority being given only for edification and not for destruction, as the apostle has it, 2 Cor. x. 8. And it confifts, 1. in an authoritative publication of the laws of Christ's house. 2. In an authoritative enforcement of them by a ministerial offer of the gospel privileges as the rewards of obedience. And, 3. in'a pow. er to inflict, according to Christ's appointment, the gospel punishments upon the disobedient, the highest whereof is excommunication, whereby the A 4

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things speak, and eschort, and rebuke with all auo. thority, Tit. ii. 15. The word in the first language may be rendered' command with alt command. Ministers are clothed with authority from God, and in his name, by virtue of a commillion received from him, they are to preach the gospel, and to speak the counsel of God, as being his mouth to the people, i Pet. iv. II. This is the principal part of the ministers work, and therefore to hear the word of God from them in this manner should be the great design of these who call a gospel minister, that they may hear from them as the mouth of God, what by nature they are, and what through the grace of God in Christ Jesus they may be. But now, .

2. When a people call a gospel minister, they should design the regular and orderly performance of the worship of God. This worship of God, as it is contradistinguished from the doctrine of the gospel, of which under the former head, consists principally in the administration of the facraments and prayer, public prayer, I mean, under which praises are comprehended, as belonging to, and always to be joined with it, according to our blessed Lord's appointment in that form, com. monly called the LORD'S PRAYER, which concludes with thanksgiving. In that iid of the Acts 42. we have an account of the public worThip of the church, which consists in preaching, there expressed by doctrine, and breaking of bread, that is, administering the sacrament of the Lord's fupper, and prayers and praises. And they, faith the spirit of God speaking of the church, continued in the apostle's doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers. And ver, 47. Praising God. The celebration of the

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facraments, public prayers and praises, are divine institutions for the salvation and edification of the church, which cannot be gone about or orderly performed without a gospel ministry, who only have commission to celebrate the facraments, and to be the mouth of the people to God, in their public assemblies, being furnished with fpiritual gifts for the work, Matth. xxviii. 19. 1 Cor. xi. 23. and xiv. 16. And therefore, when a people call à gospel minister, they should have this in view, as one great design, that thereby they may have the gofpel worship celebrated among them in all its parts, according to Christ's institution, to their fpiritual advantage, and his glory.

3. They should call a gospel minister to rule over them. This is one part of the minister's work, to rule over his flock, 1. Tim. v. 17. Let the elders that rule well, be counted worthy of double honour, especially they who labour in the word and doctrine. This superiority which go. Spel ministers have, is not a lordly dominion either over the persons or faith of their flock. No, any thing of this fort that ever crept into the church, had its rife from the subtilty of Satan, who envied its peace, and is directly opposite to the gospel, which forbids lordly 'dominion, the gospel ministers authority being given only for edification and not for destruction, as the apostle has it, 2 Cor. x. 8. And it consists, 1. in an authoritative publication of the laws of Christ's house. 2. In an authoritative enforcement of them by a ministerial offer of the gospel privileges as the rewards of obedience. “And, 3. in'a power to inflict, according to Christ's appointment, the gospel punishments upon the disobedient, the highest whereof is excommunication, whereby the

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