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ment; the Apostle speaks of them, compared with us only as servants of Christ's family. "Now I say, that the heir, so long as he is a child, differeth nothing from a servant, though he be Lord of all. Even so we, (speaking of the Jewish nation,) when we were children, were in bondage under the element of the world. But when the fulness of time was come, God sent forth his Son to redeem them that were under the law. Wherefore we are no more servants but sons."

Ought we not to be most thankful for this distinction? Certainly we ought; particularly when we consider the consequence drawn by St. Paul from it-" If children, then heirs, heirs of God, and joint heirs with Christ. What is the third and last privilege of baptism?

That we are made Inheritors of the Kingdom of Heaven.

What do you mean by the expression, Inheritors of the Kingdom of Heaven?

Being entitled to perfect and endless happiness in body and soul.

Supposing we had continued in the primitive upright. ness of our first parents, and never sinned at all, what could we merely have claimed?

We could have had no claim, but from God's free promise, to any thing more than that our being should not be worse to us, than not being. But as we are originally depraved, and have actually sinned, far from having any claim to happiness, we are liable to just punishment.

What will then be the consequence to those people who have no knowledge of this covenant?

The Apostle hath told us, that as many as have sinned without law, shall perish without; but he hath told us also, that when the Gentiles which have not the law, do by nature the things contained in the law, they are a law unto themselves.

Of what may we be certain at all events?

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That he who hath shewn the abundance of his love to us, will undoubtedly shew, not only his justice, but his mercy, to all the works of his hands, as far, and in such manner as is fit. We believe there is indeed “ None other name under heaven, given among men, whereby we must be saved." But whether they who have not had in this life the means of calling upon it, shall receive any benefit from it, it is presumptuous to determine, and useless to inquire.

What are the points to which we must attend?

That we give due thanks to the Father, who hath made us meet to be "partakers of the Inheritance of the Saints in Light;" and be duly careful to "Walk worthy of God, who hath called us to his Kingdom and Glory." When may we be said to have a right to the privileges of the covenant?

When we perform the obligation of it?

What then must be said with respect to those Children of Believers, who are taken out of the world before they become capable of faith and obedience?

We doubt not they are happy, for the general declararations of holy writ plainly comprehend their case; and our Saviour hath particularly declared "of such is the Kingdom of God."

LECTURE III.

AFTER mentioning the privileges to which baptism gives us a claim, what does our Catechism proceed to do?

It sets forth the duties to which it binds us: those things which our godfathers and godmothers promised and vowed in our names.

What is necessary to qualify and prepare us for a virtuous and religious blessedness hereafter?

A virtuous and religious temper here.

What are the conditions or obligations on our part?
They are

1st. That we renounce what God forbids.

2nd. That we believe what he teaches.

3rd. That we do what he commands.

When

Why is the condition that we are to renounce, put first? Because, it opens the for the other two. way once we come to have a due sense that we are sinners, and perceive the baseness, the guilt, the mischief of sin, we shall flee from it, with sincere penitence, to the remedy of faith, which God has appointed.

When we have in earnest resolved to forsake that which is wrong, what shall we gladly embrace?

All such truths as will direct us right.

What effect, on the contrary, will a love for wickedness have upon our minds?

It will make us, with respect to the doctrines of religion, backward to receive them, or unwilling to think of them, or desirous to interpret them unfairly.

With respect to the duties of religion, what effect will it have?

It will make our conduct unequal and inconsistent; perplexing us with silly attempts to reconcile vice and virtue, and to atone perhaps by zeal in little duties, for indulgence in great faults.

What have we every reason to suppose will be the final consequence of this?

We shall at last either fall into an open course of trangression, or which is equally fatal, contrive to make ourselves easy in a secret one.

What is the only effectual method, to avoid these fatal consequences?

To form a general and firm resolution at once, of following in every thing the scripture rule, "Cease to do evil, learn to do well."

Under how many heads is the evil, from which we are required to cease, ranged in the Catechism?

Under three heads.

Why is it so arranged?

Because whatever we do amiss, proceeds either from the secret suggestions of an invisible enemy, from the temptations thrown in our way by the visible objects around us, or from the bad dispositions of our own nature: in other words, from the devil, the world, or the flesh.

What do we first renounce in baptism?

The devil and all his works, which in the primitive ages, was the only renunciation made: the works of the devil being understood to signify, as they do in Scripture, every sort of wickedness.

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What is the advantage of the present arrangement? It is more convenient, as it gives us a more particular account of our several enemies.

What are we taught concerning the Devil, and Demons or wicked Spirits, in the Scripture?

That a number of Angels having sinned against their Maker, (from what motives, or in what instances, we are not, as we need not be, clearly told,) so as to be utterly unfit for pardon, were cast out from heaven, and are kept under such confinement as God sees proper, till the day comes, when the final sentence which they have deserved shall be executed upon them.

What in the mean time is their employment?

Being full of evil, and void of all hope, they maliciously endeavour to make those whom they can, wicked and miserable like themselves: and being all united under one head, and actuated by the same spirit of ill will against us, we are concerned to look upon them as one enemy; and therefore the Catechism speaks of them as such.

Do we not know what means they use to tempt us?

We are not distinctly informed: and it is great folly, either, on the one hand, to doubt the reality of the fact, because we know not the manner; or, on the other, to entertain groundless imaginations, or believe idle stories; and ascribe more to evil spirits than we have any sufficient cause.

Is there any religion in favouring such fancies?

Certainly not; and giving credit to such tales has frequently given rise to very hurtful superstition.

Of what are we certain, respecting these evil spirits?

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