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nounce the devil and all his works, the pomps and vanities of this wicked world, and all the sinful lufts of the flesh: to believe all the articles of the christian faith; and to keep God's holy will and commandments, and to walk in the same all the days of their life.
Where, by the devil we mean all the fallen anThe devil,
gels, of which one is chief prince, or head ; that great enemy of Christ, and his church; who having seduced our first parents, hath ever since had, through God's permisfion, a great power in the world, and still seeketh our destruction, by tempting us to sin, and then accusing us to God for it. And
The works of the devil are all wickednesses and His works,
vices, but in particular, all idolatry, witchcraft, fortune-telling, and dependence on the creatures : and especially the crimes of which the devil is principally guilty, and tempts men to; such as pride, envy, murder in fact, or in the heart, lying, deceiving, and misleading, especially in matters of religion. And
When we renounce the devil and all his works, we reject and withstand that usurped power and dominion, which he exercises in the world, we refifthis personal temptations; and engage in no kind to be partakers of his crimes, as we would not share in his punishinent.
By renouncing the world, christians absolutely The world,
renounce a yielding of themselves up to those customs and practices of worldly men, which are in themselves sinful, and they so far renounce the honours and riches of the world, as not to be ambitious of the former, nor covetous of the latter ; and, in general, do hereby look upon
themselves debarred from having more to do, than what is necessary, with any thing in the world, which may be like to prove an occasion of fin to them, or that may probably tend to turn them from God, and draw off their mind from the other world. They must never run wilfully into temptation.
As to the sinful lusts of the fiesh, they are thus
reckoned up; adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, idolatry, witchcraft, hatred and variance, emulation, wrath, strife, feditions, heresies, envyings, murders,
zalic a the
drunkenness, revellings, and such like: and consequently, to renounce all the sinful lusts of the flesh, is to avoid adultery
and fornication, rioting and drunkenness, and all that filthimi ness of the flesh and spirit, which is inconsistent with chri
stian purity, and will render us unclean in God's sight. Fi209 nally, christians in their baptism absolutely renounce all de
fires whatsoever, which fasten upon any forbidden, and thereclose fore unlawful object: fo as never to give any indulgence, or
consent to them, much less must they follow, or be led by
them to the commission of any sinful act. oli By the articles of the christian faith weare to understand all
those doctrines of religion, for which we have the et authority of Christ and his apostles, the funda- To believe
mental points whereof are summed up in that form faith. Tale of found words; which, because it contains the
heads of the doctrine preached by the apostles, and was com-
to learn thein, both as to the words and meaning manner. zich of them. For, the nature of that faith, which we
are to give to the articles of our creed, is such an assent as must FIT be sincerely from the heart, according to that saying in the
viiith chapter of acts, If thou believest with all thine heart, thou mayest be baptized; it must be active and work by love; and
stedfast without wavering : not only believing the great bemi nefits and promises of God to mankind, but gratefully accepObat ting of the fame, by a dutiful obedience and resignation to Tot God through Christ'; and labouring together with the Holy de Spirit to escape the judgments of God, and secure unto ourel felves a joyful resurrection : otherwise it will little avail us to Die believe all the articles of the christian faith. OF By the promise to keep God'shøly willand commandments, Hotele weare bound by vow to yieldan universalobedience s unto, and to keep as long as we live our good refo- To keep me te lutions; not to break, but to keep the ten command- mandments. té ments of the moral law; under which are included
all those particular precepts of the Old and New Testaments, which are reducible to one or other of those heads : for, as
Jesus himself observes, on these commandments hang all the law and the prophets.
Thus I have shewn you the nature of the vow in The obliga: baptism, and now I must inform you, that except tion of these
ele a christian, when arrived at years of understand
ing, shall believe and do, as promised by his sureties in baptism, he will certainly forfeit all the benefits thereof ; because the benefits promised by God in baptism are that part of God's covenant with man, which we have no reason to hope we shall obtain, till we comply with our promises made to him in that sacrament; which by God's help we are always able to perform: for God never can be supposed to command, or require more of us, than what he enables us to perform: and therefore, both in justice, and regard of our own interest, we are bound to stand to this covenant, which was made in our name by our godfathers and godmothers; because, they promised no more than what is implied in the very nature of baptism ; and we are thereby united to Christ in his death; which union is formed by baptisin, when we are made members of Christ's mystical body, the church, whereof he is the head, and wherein we profess to believe what he hath revealed, and perform what he hath commanded; and engage to govern our lives by thał gospel, which he hath revealed and commanded to be published to all the world: and this union is farther maintained by preserving communion with the church, in prayers, and in the facrament, and by living in a regular subjection to, and strict union with, our spiritual governors.
Moreover there are great privileges that are deOf what be- rived from this union, from our being living memnefit.
bers of Christ's mystical body : viz. The gracious promises of pardon and forgiveness of finuponour true repentance, the assistance of God's blessed Spirit, and the influences of his grace to enable us to work out our falvation: The benefit of Christ's intercession in heaven, where he is an advocate for us with the Father : A share in all those promises of care and protection made to the church; and, to encourage our perseverance, an inheritance incorruptible and undefiled, a crown of glory that fadeth not away. For, though all man
ide kind are in the hands of God's unlimited goodness, yet his co
venanted mercies are the peculiar lot and portion of christians, withe members of Christ's holy church, who honour God by a recent due discharge of those things promised in baptism; of which 2D promises you have already been taught what that first vow lur obliges us to renounce, namely, the devil and all his works, in the pomps and vanities of this wicked world, and all the fina itbe ful lusts of the flesh. And therefore, on Let us proceed to enquire what that faith is, without which made it is impossible to please God, and to which we give our p2 affent when we profess to believe all the articles of the chricom ftian faith, that form of found words commonly called the 12 apostles creed; of all which articles we shall treat, after that of I have laid down some instructions concerning divine revela11 tion, and given some convincing reasons for it's certainty, i lie and consequently, why we are obliged to rely on the autholeti city of holy scripture. itt VI. Concerning a divine revelation, the proofs are three : The first they may relate to the person inspired; secondThe ly, to those that receive the matter revealed from
in Of divine
revelation. cele the persons inspired ; thirdly, to those that live re
mote from the age of the inspired persons; as is the case of all ha christians since the times of Christ, and the apostles his sucE ceffors.
For if the Almighty vouchsafeth to make a revelation, or de manifest and discover any truth or thing to a man, of which
he was before ignorant; it is very reasonable to think that
he will satisfy the person concerning the reality of it ; før, it e cannot signify any thing, or have any effect upon the man, Line unless he be satisfied it is such. And, the assurance of a di
vine revelation, as to the person himself, is most
+ ally known that God, who made our understandings, and
knows the frame of them, can accompany his revelations es with so clear and overpowering a light, as to discover to us
the divinity of them, and that they are the manifestation of i his will to mankind. Wherefore,
In God's manifesting himself to the prophets, there was such a powerful representation on the part of the messenger of God's will, and that clearness of perception on the part of the person inspired, or to whom he was fent, as did abundantly make good those phrases of vision and voice, by which it is described in fcripture. Yet sometimes there was added some sign or supernatural proof; for, when Gideon had some doubt of what the angel faid, when he knew not who he was, and betrayed some fear, when required to go on a difficult enterprize, he was confirmed by the fire out of the rock, that consumed the flesh, and by the fleece, and by the soldier's dream, and the interpretation thereof: and Mofes was convinced not only of his own mission from God, but of the acceptance and authority he should have with the people, when the rod in his hand was turned into a serpent; and his hand by putting it into his bosom, was made leprous, and again by taking it out was cured in a moment.
By which examples you may perceive, why a To whom hidden.
person wants; because a good man, when he is inspired, and reflects upon it, and diligently considers the afsurance, which he finds in his mind, can give a rational account of it to himself, which the deluded person cannot have ; whose positiveness often riseth from pride and self-conceit, which have no imall influence; but more efpecially from a disordered imagination or fancy, which interrupts the operations of the mind; whereas a real inspiration will bear the test of the prophet's reason, and the peoples examination. The confidence, therefore, of enthusiasts in their imaginary inspirations, arising from a defect of their reason and judgment, is in itself no more an argument against this, than becaule lente is fometimes deceived and impoled upon, that therefore it is never certain; or because there are errors and difputes among mankind, that therefore there is no truth. Confidence in imaginary inspirations may be great, but the perception, a
d 10 the allurance cannot be equal to the truth. Besides, It's outward The truth of such a revelation may be judged of, syidences. from the reasons why we ought to believe the per