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iquity,' ver. 23. Again, When once the master of the house is risen up, and hath shut to the door, and ye begin to stand without, and to knock at the door, saying, Lord, Lord, open to us; and he shall answer and say unto you; I know you not, whence you are. Then shall ye begin to say, We have eaten and drunken in thy presence, and thou hast taught in our streets. But he shall say, I tell you I know you not, whence ye are, Depart from me ye workers of iniquity,' Luke, xiii. 25, 26, 27. No pretences to Lord, Lord, or to gifts of prophecy, or casting out of devils, or doing of wonderful works, or eating or drinking in his presence, or hearing of him teach in their streets, would avail any thing to evil doers, 'Set the trumpet to thy mouth,' saith the Lord to the prophet, He shall come as an eagle against the house of the Lord, because they have transgressed my covenant, and trespassed against my law, Israel shall cry unto me, My God, we know thee,' Hos. viii. 1, 2. They had the confidence, though in great hypocrisy, to address themselves to God, as their God, and to account themselves as his people; but mark what follows, ver. 3, Israel hath cast off the thing that is good, the enemy shall pursue him.' Israel was once Holiness to the Lord, and the first fruits of his increase,' Jer. ii. 3. God planted Israel a noble vine, wholly a right seed.' ver. 21. And God remembers Israel, the kindness of his youth, the love of his espousals, when he went after him in the wilderness, in a land that was not sown, ver. 2. But Israel forgot his Maker and the law of his God, Hos. viii. 14, and iv. 6, and of a noble vine,' turned into a degenerate plant of a strange vine,' Jer. ii. 21. And therefore when the Lord looked for grapes it brought forth wild grapes, Isai. v. 2, when he looked for judgment, behold oppression, and for righteousness, behold a cry, ver. 7. Yet notwithstanding this woful degeneracy, Israel built temples, Hos. viii. 14, and Ephraim (which being the chief tribe of revolting Israel, is often used for Israel) made many altars- -and offered sacrifices, ver. 11, 13, and esteemed himself as having a peculiar relation to God, as ver. 'My God, we know thee.' Thus we see how persons under a high profession of religion, and thinking themselves to be the people of God, may be deceived. What hath been, may be; as there were those in the apostle's days, that had a form of godliness, but denied the power thereof,' see 2 Tim. iii. 5, so there may be such in ours. Upon which considera
tion, it concerns us all to try ourselves, and see how the case really stands between God and our souls.
66 Seeing then we profess faith in Christ, the true Light, let us examine ourselves by the light of Christ shining in our hearts, whether we are the children of the light? If we are children of the light, then we are those that walk in the light, and If we walk in the light, as he (God) is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son, cleanseth us from all sin.' 1 John, i. 7. We come to witness the cleansing virtue of the blood of Jesus Christ to cleanse us not only from some, but from all sin. And if we do not come to witness this, at least in the initial and progressive work of sanctification; we have cause to question ourselves about our walking in the light. Walking denotes a state of continuance and perseverance; if then we walk in the light, we are such as abide, and keep constantly therein; and if at any time darkness should surprise any of us, and mislead us, the sincere soul that loves the light, is never at rest, till it recover that heavenly path again.
"Unto those that walk in the light, the light is exceeding comfortable and pleasant; for it gives them the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.' I Cor. iv. 6. It directs them in their spiritual travel, discovers to them the snares and wiles of the enemy, and helps to avoid them, enabling to lead an holy and virtuous life in all manner of conversation; and in so doing to answer the great end of the coming of the Son of God into the world, and of his offering himself unto the Father, for he gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works,' Tit. ii. 14, that we being dead to sin, should live unto righteousness,' 1 Pet. ii. 24. For Christ loved the church and gave himself for it, that he might sanctify and cleanse it, with the washing of water by the word, that he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish,' Eph. v. 25, 26, 27. through him might be saved,' John, iii. 17. that they which live should not henceforth live unto themselves, but unto him which died for them and rose again,' 2 Cor. v. 15. From whence it necessarily follows, that since the life of
"That the world For he died for all,
Christ was a life of most perfect holiness, and the end of his coming was and is to make men holy, as God is holy and perfect as he is perfect; (see 1 Pet. i. 16, Matt. v. 48,) it concerneth all those that profess Christianity, to be holy in all manner of conversation. For as holiness is the badge, so it is the necessary and essential qualification of a true Christian. Without holiness, real and substantial holiness, Christianity is but an empty name. Where that is wanting, there is only the outside or carcase of religion, and the men are no better in God's account than whited walls, and painted sepulchres.
"Archbishop Tillotson, in his Sermons preached upon several Occasions, edit. 1671, saith, 'It is not our being gilded over with the external profession of Christianity, that will avail us; our religion must be a vital principle, inwardly to change and transform us; -if by our lives and actions we do contradict that religion which we profess, we do by this very thing prove ourselves to be counterfeits and hypocrites,' p. 260, 261.
“And again, 'If a man profess any other art or calling, it is expected that he should be skilled in it, and excel those that do not pretend to it. It is the greatest disparagement to a physician that can be, to say of him, that he is in other respects an excellent man, only he hath no great skill in diseases, and the methods of cure; because this is his profession: he might be pardoned for other defects; but the proper skill of his art may justly be expected from him. So, for a Christian, to say of him, The worst thing in him is his life, he is very orthodox in his opinions, but he is an ill-natured man; one of very violent passions; he will be very frequently drunk, he makes no conscience of his dealings; he is very uncharitable to all that differ from him: this man is faulty in his profession, he is defective in that which should be his excellency: he may have orthodox opinions in religion, but when all is done; there is no such error, and heresy, nothing so fundamentally opposite to religion, as a wicked life. p. 257.
"He that would know what a man believes, let him attend rather to what he does, than to what he talks. He that leads a wicked life, makes a more credible and effectual profession of infidelity, than he who in words only denies the gospel. It is the hardest thing in the world to imagine that the man believes Christianity, who by ungodliness and worldly lusts, does deny
and renounce it. The greatest enmity to religion is to profess it, and live unanswerably to it. p. 263.
"A Jew or a Turk is not so great an enemy to Christianity, as a lewd and vicious Christian. p. 264.
"A Christian does not pretend to have a better wit, and a more piercing understanding, than a Turk or an heathen; but he professeth to live better than they, to be more chaste, and more temperate, more just, and more charitable, more meek and -If gentle, more loving and peaceable than other men.any man profess himself a Christian, and do not live better than others, he is a mere pretender, and mountebank in religion.' p. 261. "And then, pressing all those who call themselves Christians to live up to the essential and fundamental laws of religion, the same author sums this up under these heads; To love God, and to love our neighbour, to do to every man, as we would have him do to us; to mortify our lusts and subdue our passions, and sincerely to endeavour to grow in every grace and virtue; and to abound in all the fruits of righteousness, which are by Jesus Christ, to the praise and glory of God' p. 269.these are undoubtedly the essential and fundamental laws of Christianity, and they that are found in obedience thereunto are the only true Christians, because they do what Christ requires of them, and give up in faithful obedience to his holy and pure divine light; which supports and comforts them under all exercises and temptations, sweetens every cup, though never so bitter to flesh and blood; enables them to surmount all difficulties they meet with, works out all that is of the dark sinful nature, sanctifies them thoroughly, and makes them meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light."
"The Duty of Children toward their Parents."
"That children should honour their parents, is expressly commanded in the Holy Scriptures. 'Honour thy father and thy mother, that thy days may be long upon the land, which the Lord thy God giveth thee,' Exod. xx. 12. 'Honour thy father and thy mother, as the Lord thy God hath commanded thee, that thy days may be prolonged, and that it may go well with thee, in the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee,' Deut. v. 16. 'God commanded, saying, Honour thy father and mother,' Matt. xv. 4. 'Honour thy father and mother, which
is the first commandment with promise,' Eph. vi. 2. My son, hear the instruction of thy father, and forsake not the law of thy mother,' Prov. i. 8. 'Hear ye children the instruction of a father, and attend to know understanding; for I give you good doctrine, forsake you not my law,' iv. 1, 2. • My son, keep thy father's commandment, and forsake not the law of thy mother, bind them continually upon thine heart, and tie them about thy neck, when thou goest, it shall lead thee, when thou sleepest, it shall keep thee; and when thou awakest it shall talk with thee,' vi. 20, &c. 'Hearken unto thy father that begat thee, and despise not thy mother when she is old,' xxiii. 22.
"It is a point of wisdom for children to honour their parents, and accounted folly to dishonour them. A wise son heareth his father's instruction; but, a scorner heareth not rebuke,' Prov. xiii. 1. A fool despiseth his father's instruction; but he that regardeth reproof, is prudent,' xv. 5.
“Dutiful children are a comfort, and undutiful, a discomfort to religious parents. 'A wise son maketh a glad father; but a foolish son is the heaviness of his mother,' Prov. x. 1. The father of the righteous shall greatly rejoice; and he that begetteth a wise child, shall have joy of him. Thy father and thy mother shall be glad, and she that bare thee shall rejoice,' xxiii. 24, 25.
"Note. Under the word honour the whole duty of children to parents is comprehended, as love, fear, reverence, and obedience, and whatsoever is incumbent upon them by the law of God, written in the heart, or copied out in the sacred records of Scripture. Note, also, that obedience is the grand test of children's love, fear, and reverence of their parents. For it is in vain to pretend to either, if they do not obey them. Therefore saith the apostle, Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for that is right,' Eph. vi. 1. 'Children, obey your parents in all things; for that is well-pleasing unto the Lord;' that is, in all things in the Lord, Col. iii. 20. For whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are comely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, if there be any praise, think on these things,' chap. iv. 8.
"Let both parents and children diligently mind the doctrine of Christ, and faithfully keep thereunto in all things: and as