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and all my disaffection to the divine character, arises simply from considering him as my enemy, let him but declare himself my friend, and I shall love him with that kind of love which alone is his due ; for it is natural to those who are born of the flesh, to love a friend and benefactor ; for sinners love those that love them. And if my disaffection to the Deity results only from his being my enemy, then, as the breach began on his side, so it belongs to him to retract first; and if he loves me, I shall love him. No mediator or sanctifier is needed in the case ; so the whole gospel is overthrown. The sinner is justified ; God and his law condemned. The same may be said of every false scheme of religion. He who denies one single truth, let him be consistent, and he must deny the whole; and he who believes one error, let him be consistent, and he must believe a whole system of lies. And it was in this view that St. Paul pronounced the man or angel accursed, who should preach another gospel ; because, if his other gospel was true, "Christ is dead in vain," and the whole of Christianity is overthrown. (Gal. ii. 21.) And as this was the case with the false scheme which St. Paul then opposed, so it is equally true as to every false scheme which has been advanced since; for, as it is enmity to the true gospel, which is contrary to every vicious bias in the human heart, that is the source of every false gospel, which is adapted to justify our corruptions, (John ii. 19–21,) so, of course, every false gospel is in its own nature contrary to and subversive of the true. But he who hates the true gospel of Christ so entirely, that he would overthrow the whole of it, were he able, as he is a thorough enemy to God and to his Son; so St. Paul's sentence against him, “Let him be accursed,” is not more severe than that of his Master, " He that believeth not shall be damned ” a sentence, which, when it comes to be put in execution at the day of judgment, will meet with universal approbation and applause from all holy beings in the universe. As this is the most important subject in the world, and as we are all infinitely interested in it, so it demands the most serious consideration, and impartial and strict examination of all the professors of Christianity. He, therefore, that hath ears to hear, let him hear.

THAT THERE IS BUT

ONE COVENANT,

WHEREOP

BAPTISM AND THE LORD'S SUPPER ARE SEALS;

NAMELY,

THE COVENANT OF GRACE,

PROVED FROM THE WORD OF GOD;

AND THE DOCTRINE OF AN

EXTERNAL GRACELESS COVENANT,

LATELY ADVANCED BY THE REV. MR. MOSES MATHER,

IN A PAMPHLET, ENTITLED

* THE VISIBLE CHURCH IN COVENANT WITH GOD,” &c.

SHOWN TO BE AN UNSCRIPTURAL DOCTRINE.

BUT UNTO THE WICKED GOD BAITH, WHAT HAST THOU TO DO TO DECLARB XY STATUTES, OR THAT THOU SHOULDST TAKE MY COVENANT IN THY MOUTH ?

Psalm i. 16.

PREFACE.

If we may judge of the sentiments of ministers in general, by the pieces lately published on this controversy, all are agreed in these three propositions, namely :

I. There is but one covenant, a profession of a compliance with which is requisite to an admission into the visible church of Christ, in complete standing.

II. Those who really comply with this covenant have, in the sight of God, an equal right to baptism for their children, and to the Lord's supper for themselves.

III. All scruples to the contrary are groundless and unscriptural.

There is, therefore, but one single point which now needs to be settled, to decide the whole controversy, namely: With what covenant are we to profess a compliance, - the covenant of grace, or a graceless covenant ?

And this point is of such a nature, that it seems necessary to settle it before we proceed to act at all in church affairs; in gathering a church, settling a minister, admitting members, or administering sealing ordinances. For until this is settled, we know not upon what covenant the church is to be formed, nor what covenant is to be professed by those who are to be admitted, nor what covenant is to be sealed by baptism and the Lord's supper, nor what covenant the minister is to preach up and hold out to public view, as the thing to be complied with by professors, and to be sealed by the sacraments. So that, if we mean to proceed like rational creatures in our church affairs, we must look this matter to the bottom, and come to a determination.

To say, that it is needless to determine this point, is the same thing as to say, that it is of no consequence whether our churches are founded on a right covenant, or on a wrong one ; or whether God's seals are fixed to the covanant he designed, or to a covenant to which he never intended they should be affixed; which none will pretend to say; for, if it is of no consequence what covenant we profess, nor what covenant we seal, a right one or a wrong one, it is surely of no consequence whether we profess or seal any covenant at all ; which to say, is to tear up by the roots all notion of a visible church in the world. But to set aside a visible church, as a needless thing, is to set aside Christianity, as an imposture. There must be Christian churches; there must be a public profession of some covenant or other; there must be sealing ordinances; these ordinances must be administered by the ministers of Christ to the proper subjects; it must be determined who they are ; it must, therefore, be determined on what covenant churches are to be formed, and what covenant is to be preached up, professed, and sealed. It is a controversy, which no honest man, who means to have any thing to do in church affairs, can let alone, as a mere circumstantial point. Much less can those who are already in the ministry, or are about to settle in that work, consistently content themselves to proceed without any settled scheme at all ; unless all they aim at is to live a quiet life, right or wrong; which is what none will profess to do.

Our churches were originally founded on a profession of a compliance with the covenant of grace, at least generally. And indeed, I know not of one church in New England, of our denomination, which is now otherwise founded, if we may judge of their foundation by the words of the covenant which is read to those who are admitted to full communion. So far as I know, the formulas in use express the chief things contained in the covenant of grace: “That they arouch the Lord to be their God and chief good, and give up themselves to him, through Jesus Christ, to live to him and seek his glory.” And therefore, should we be convinced that the covenant of grace is not the covenant with which the church of

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