Abbildungen der Seite
PDF
EPUB

1

[ocr errors]

these revealed truths of God. Therefore commanded to hold fast the faithful wor have been taught, that we may be able, doctrine, both to exhort and to convinc sayers :

“ for there are many unrul talkers, and deceivers, especially the cumcision [that is, workmongers], must be stopped, who subvert who ing things which they ought not.

It is true, the faithful serv: sometimes see their flocks scatt

.: rock in by false teachers, and they ma Eye and an their deceivings, inasmuch a cly allowed inay be brokenhearted under

:heir mouths, you read in Jeremiah, chap. mall, to confess the ing this, their devised fable

lear the sweet inshall they destroy the elecom oh it is sweet to see though they may deceive the glorious flame selves; and this is often

God has often errors entangle them in

te hours of his until they break out

hare known the light, and then th

will and other darkness, and grope

against eleceven while the Sun

semently, that full strength. We

by a storm will save the poc

gegnee, and by their mout!

se ne seen them eth the devi

Rice one of it, I cannot pe wise in t

et minst setting off the froy

[graphic]

in scheme is as

nse those

wat ever De assured,

y deceived, ('xtinguish the

shall destroy all mers of them, and e prevent not; as it

Israel and the house vacherously against me, .. ve belied the Lord, and cr shall evil come upon us. , become wind, and the word shall it be done unto them. h the Lord God of hosts, Beis word, behold, I will make

my -uth fire, and this people wood, and them,” Jer. v. 11–14. We are comntend earnestly for the faith that was ied to the saints; and, if we do this, untend for the glory of the ever-blessed for the glory of all the revealed perfecthe godhead, that their glory may not be d; we must contend for every essential truth bible, and for the Spirit's work on the souls od's elect. This is the duty of every Christian:

if any of our opposers be of the chosen seed Israel, God will in his own time bring them out; it, if they are of the house of Esau, the gospel ill be a savour of death unto death to them,

[ocr errors]

in the end consume them; as it is written, “ And the house of Jacob shall be a fire, and the house of Joseph a flame, and the house of Esau for stubble, and they shall kindle in them and devour them; and there shall not be any remaining of the house of Esau; for the Lord hath spoken it,” Obad. 18.

There are many deluded souls, that fight desperately against the truth, who have got the fire of God's wrath within them; and conscience fights as much against them as they fight against the truths of God. It is the duty of every Christian to contend for the truth; and we shall be sure to set fire to the hole one way or other; for, if the fire of eternal love never purifies them, the flames of wrath will surely torment them. The Saviour is both a refiner's fire, and a consuming fire; a propitious saviour, and a dreadful judge.

“The sucking child shall play on the hole of the asp.” When we find that there are no signs of reclaiming these enemies of truth, they being hardened against all reproof, we may turn the tables against them. “He that being often reproved hardeneth his neck shall suddenly be destroyed, and that without remedy." By turning the tables against them I mean, that, while they are raging against the decrees of God, we may prove to their faces that they are at the same time fulfilling them; yea, while such are kicking against election and predestination, they are all the while fulfilling the pre-appointments of God; as it is written, “ To whom coming as unto a living stone,

disallowed indeed of men, but chosen of God and precious. Wherefore also it is contained in the scripture, Behold, I lay in Sion a chief corner-stone, elect, precious; and he that believeth on him shall not be confounded. Unto you therefore which believe he is precious: but unto them which be disobedient, the stone which the builders disallowed, the same is made the head of the corner, and a stone of stumbling, and a rock of offence, even to them which stumble at the word, being disobedient; whereunto also they were appointed. But ye are a chosen generation.”

But to whom is Christ a stumbling stone? I answer, to merit mongers. They want to climb to heaven without being brought in debtors to grace. Jesus Christ resisteth them, agreeable to his word: The Lord resisteth the proud, i Pet. v. 5.

Jesus Christ will allow a preacher to be a worker together with himself, in dispensing the word of his grace, because the feet of the preacher carry the message, and the preacher's tongue delivers it. We then are workers together with him, 2 Cor. vi. 1. But the Arminian wants to be a copartner with him in the work of justification. God says, , No. Jesus shall magnify the law, and make it honourable, Isaiah xlii. 21. And “ by his knowledge shall my righteous servant justify many,” Isaiah liji. 11. The Arminian wants to be a coworker with the Holy Ghost in the work of sanctification. The Lord of Hosts says, No. might, nor by power, but by my Spirit.” The

“ Not by Arminian wants some ground to boast on, and to have the honour of coping the building with sinless perfection. The Lord God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ says, No. “He shall bring forth the headstone with shoutings;" and sinners shall cry, “ Grace, grace (not works) unto it,” Zech. iv. 7. In short, they will not enter by the door, and he will not let them climb up any other way. They want to help him out in his work, that they may share in his glory; and he deems them thieves and robbers; and says, He will not give his glory to another. This is the dreadful dispute that is going on between the Lord and them.

Thus Christ is an impediment in their way; they cannot submit to him, and he will not bow to them. His sovereignty is an impediment in the way of free will; particular redemption lies in the way of natural affections; his imputed righteousness is an impediment in the way of human merit; and free grace is an impediment in the way of pride, because it cuts off boasting. Thus the Saviour becomes a stumbling stone instead of a foundation, 1 Cor. iii. 11; and a rock of offence instead of a stone of help, 1 Sam. vii. 12. He is called a rock of offence because of his stability, it being impossible for those offended at him ever to move him. Thus Christ is a rock in the way of selfrighteous ones; cavilling at. him, as an impediment in their way, is called stumbling; and being offended at him is like seeking revenge on a rock that has thrown us down, by kicking at it; at

« ZurückWeiter »