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making them legible and intelligible. This doctrine is not according to fact, for the Word of God is of all books that which has produced the strongest influence upon the institutions of men, and which, perhaps, is the last book to lose its natural influence upon individual men. It doth not convert all men, because all men do not know, do not believe, do not keep in memory, do not abide in its truths; but its truths are not passive truths, but truths of the sharpest and most active virtue. They can be resisted, doubtless, and they require fair play within the soul, and call for an energy of study and contemplation, proportionate to the importance; but no man was ever yet brought out of darkness into light, save by some of these revelations taking hold upon his mind, and working by a natural influence upon all his feelings and all his actions.

This depreciation of the Word into an unintelligible legend, is not only against the fact of universal experience, but against the declarations of all Scripture, wherein the statutes, the commandments, the Word, the Son, and the Spirit of God, are exalted with a mutual honour, and not one depreciated with the design of exalting another. But if there is one thing in Scripture more exalted than another, it is the Word, and that most wisely, because from it is the knowledge of all the rest, and of God himself. For lending a deaf ear to this most dangerous of all heresies (if we may use that cant term), we do give men credit; but if thereupon they would draw away from de

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pendance upon God's Spirit, we hold them back, and pray them to consider, that because the Word is well fitted to enlighten the eyes of the blind and give understanding to the simple, its influence is nevertheless to be ascribed to the Spirit of Godin like manner as the fruits of the harvest, or the success of the mariner, and the general prosperity of life, are to be ascribed to the hand of God, though seemingly produced by no means but our own industry, skill, and carefulness. Nay more, though the Word has in it a constant virtue, and will have till the end of time, which virtue is only to be derived from it by a faithful perusal and persevering obedience; still, if we look not constantly to the Spirit of God for the increase, we shall never grow in religion, though in selfconceit and ingratitude we may grow-just in like manner as though the fertility reside in the elements of earth, water, air and heat, and may never be extracted thence but by study} to discover and industry to practise; still, if the labourer look not to the providence of God for all his increase, he will grow hard in impiety and ingratitude, but in devotion, and godliness he

will not grow.

More than this I declare myself incompetent to see; and they may blame me for what they choose, but I can no more. I cannot find in my heart to blemish that glorious and potential Word, which first the ministry of angels, and then the ministry of Christ, and then the ministry of the Holy Spirit, brought from heaven's sanctuary of truth to this necessitous and beguiled earth. I cannot find to cast mist and mystery upon its intelligible face, hesitation and dimness over the eye which looketh thereon. Read, read, and be instructed in all the offices of God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. Read, read, that your souls may live, and while you read, and light begins to dawn, praise the Lord for his goodness, and be encouraged to go forward; conceive no vain gloryings, but glory in the spirit of the Lord ; and when the voice of conscience awaketh from its long slumber, give ear to its admonitions, and praise the Lord for his goodness. And when the sense of sin overwhelms you, still, in the overflowing floods, trust in him. And when the Saviour, all-glorious in his sufficient righteousness, discloseth himself to your view, rejoice and be exceeding glad, and praise the Lord for his goodness, and for his loving-kindness unto the children of men. And when at length you come to walk after the Spirit, and to have the witness of the spirit that you are the sons of God, and to feel your calling and election becoming sure, then give thanks to God, and wait for the revelation of his sons, and the inheritance of the saints in light.






This is no common argument in which we have been engaged, and that is no common conclusion which it hath had in view. It is no controversy

. with the opinions of an antagonist, whose undefended sides you might lay bare, and whose weapons you might turn against himself. You have no advantages from his unskilfulness or rashness, and you have no incitement from any personal interest in the struggle. For it is a question with all the doubts and objections of the hesitating mind. And we stand to the post both of impugning and defending the great thesis of JUDGMENT TO COME,-a double capacity, which requires a double exercise of fairness and justice. We have first to excite the hesitations of the mind, and afterward to allay them again; so that our ingenuity is doubly tasked, and we feel often in a divided state. For it hath been our wish to deal wisely between the reason of man and the revelation of God, steering wide of the coarseness and cruelty with which dogmatical theologians ride over the head of every natural feeling and reasonable thought of doubting men--remembering the poverty of our own understanding, and attributing whatever we possess to the free and unmerited gift of God. To occupy this ground of mediating the matter in dispute between the reasoning power of man and the revelation of Almighty God, we may have given offence to both; to the one, for not having done its difficulties justice in the statement or the resolution; to the other, for having too daringly intermeddled and interfered with the secrecy and sacredness of its counsels. We are weak and feeble-minded like all men, and little acquainted with such high discourse, begirt also with manifold engagements, and invaded with the noise of this unresting place; and therefore we hope, from the sympathy of our fellow mortals, forgiveness for any injustice we have shown them; and we shall seek in the secret ear of our God that forgiveness for which he is to be feared, and that redemption for which he is to be sought after.

In casting our eye back over the eight preceding parts of our Argument, to review it all, we discern some passages in which we have spoken with liberty of men who still live under their Maker's good providence and within the reach of his tender mercy. Which we could easily expunge or soften down, or make atonement for; but we will not, we cannot-For, my zeal towards God and the common good hath been stung almost into madness by the writings of reproachable men, who give the tone to the sentimental

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