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as his alone ground of confidence before the Lord : for the covenant shews not, nor allows any other ; nothing fave Fesus Christ and him crucified, i Cor. ii, 2. He hath some measure of confidence for life and salvation, upon that ground; whereby he is distinguished from the desperate, faithless, and unbelieving: and what confidence he hath for life and salva. tion, he hath upon that ground alone; whereby he is diftinguished from the presumptuous formalists, and hypocrites. And both these things are joined in the believer's character, Philip. iii. 3. And rejoice in Christ Jesus, and have no confidence in the flesh.
VII. The promises of the covenant are a satisfy. ing portion to their hearts. They are indeed sensible they have many wants; but then they see as much in the covenant as would supply them all; that they need not go to another door for supply: they are persuaded there is as much water in that well as would quench all their thirst, if they could but get the art of drawing it. Thus the covenant is all their falvation, and all their desire, 2 Sam. xxiii. 5. This discovery of the covenant is not owing to nature, but to that grace which shews so much worth in the one pearl, as makes a man content to sell all he hath to gain it, Matth. xii. 46. But no man will come into the covenant, until once he get it: for who will join himself to one in a marriage-covenant, or contract of service, with whom he cannot see how to live? Faith discerns in the covenant not only a refuge, but a portion, Psal. cxlii. 5. else the man would never come into it. Apd pone who have once got this discovery, will remain out of the covenant, Psal. ix. 10. They that know thy name, will put their trust in thee. See John iv. 1o. If the worth of the treafure hid in the field of the gospel, be perceived, all will go for the obtaining thereof, Matth. xiii. 44, 45.; all will be counted lols and dung for the excellency of it, Philip. iii. 8.
Certainly the men of the world do not see this in the covenant: it is but an empty hungry thing in their blinded eyes. The covenant is, in the gospel, held out to them in the breadth and length thereof: but it does not take with theni; it is far from being all their desire: after all, as if they had seen no. thing that could fatisfy, they still cry, Who will fhew us any good? Pfal. iv. 6. The truth is, the heart of man can never see enough in the covenant for to rest fatisfied with, till grace give it a new set, and contract its endless desires : for that which the unre, newed heart is most set upon, there is no provision in the covenant for, but against it.
VII. The Spirit of the covenant is in them: and that is another spirit than what the men of the world are acted by, Numb. xiv. 24. Ezek. xxxvi. 27. I will put my spirit within you. The Spirit of Christ is the Spirit of the covenant, purchased by the blood of the covenant, lodged in the fuluess thereof in Christ the head of the covenant, and com. municated in some measure to all the covenant people. And that Spirit may be known by thefe three characters thereof.
1. The Spirit of the covenant is a spirit of holiness. The great design of the covenant, next to the glory of God, was the fanctification of finners, Luke i. 74, 75. All the lines of the covenant, from the first of them unto the last, meet in that as their centre. There is a display of exact justice, in the condition of the covenant; of rich grace and mercy, in the promises of it: of greatest faithfulness and power, in the administration of it: but holiness goes through the whole, and every the least part of it. Where. fore it is called the holy covenant, Dan. xi. 30. Who then can reafonably imagine, that the unholy are within this covenant? that the servants of sin whether profane, or formalifts, ftrangers to the power of godliness, whom no bands of holiness will
hold, can be within the bond of the holy covenant? No, sure they are not ;, they have not the Spirit of the covenant. The Spirit of the covenant makes the covenanted initially holy; and to press towards the mark, to wrestle, long, grone, and pant for the perfection of holiness, Philip. iii. 14. It makes a vein of holiness run through their whole man; their whole life; their thoughts, their words, their actions; their dealings with God, and their dealings with men. The covenant was erected on purpose to destroy the work of the devil : it was a confede. racy entered into by the Father and the Son, for rooting sin out of the hearts and lives of the children of Adam; for restoring the divine image in them; and for bringing them again to a perfect conformity to the moral law of the ten commandments, from which they fell in Adam. For this end was the condition of it performed, the promises of it made, and the administration thereof committed to the holy Jefus : 1 John iii. 8. For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that he might destroy the works of the devil. Wherefore, whofoever partake of the Spirit of the covenant, partake of the spirit of holiness : Gal. v. 18. If ye be led by the Spirit, ye are not under the law. Verfe 16. Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfil the luft of the flesh.
2. The Spirit of the covenant is an ingenious free Spirit, Psalm li. 12. It is the spirit of fons, not of Naves; of free men, not of bond men, Rom. viii. 15. There is some obedience to the holy law given by unbelievers, the men of the first covenant, as well as by believers, the men of the second covenant : and the eyes of the world can perceive no difference between the obedience of some of the former fort, and of those of the latter fort ; howbeit there is a vast difference, which is seen by the all-seeing eye. Are these within the covenant praying persons ? So are many, who have no saving part nor lot in it, Isa.
Iviii. 2. Are they men of temperance and fobriety, justice and honesty, candor and faithfulness, men of blameless lives? So are several others besides them, for all that any man can see, Philip. iii. 6. Thus far they agree. But there'is a vast difference of the Spirit they are acted by, which makes a mighty odds in the manner and kind of their obedience. Unbe. lievers are acted by a fpirit of bondage, suitable to their state of bondage under the covenant of works, Gal. iv. 24, 25,
A Navish fear and a servile hone are the weights hung upon them by that covenant, causing them to go: Sin is avoided, duty performed, not out of love to God and holiness, but out of love to themselves. Believers are acted by the Spirit of adoption, suitable to their state of adoption, under the covenant of grace, ver. 26. God is their Father; and they serve him as fons, not as faves, Mal. iii: 17. Christ is their elder brother, who loved them, and gave himself for them; and his love constrains them, 2 Cor. V. 14. The holy Spirit dwells in them, hath quickened them, renewed them, making them partakers of the divine nature, 2 Pet. i. 4. So fin is avoided as contrary to their new nature, duty pursued as agreeable to it. Their faith of the love of God in Christ hath begotten in them love to God again, for a new principle of obedience, 1 Tim. i. si By faith they trust on Christ, and on him alone for Jife and falvation : and this at once undermines in them the flavish fear of hell, and the servile hope of heaven; so that these are so far from being their only motives to obedience, that they cannot be their predominant motives ; nay, they cannot be at all in them, but as enemies to their faith and love, 2 Tim. i. 7. 1 John iv. 18. Yet withal, it is to be remem. bered, that it is not Navish for faints to fear God's fatherly anger, and thereby to be birred up to duty, Psalm cxix. 120. Heb. xi. 7.; nor to hold the way of duty, in hope of the enjoyment of God, in that
way, and the tokens of his favour, John xiv. 21. and in the end perfect happiness in heaven; all through Jesus Christ alone, i Cor. xv. 58. Our need of these things for incitements to duty, do indeed argue our childish state, for there will be no need of these fears and hopes in heaven; but by no means a Navish state. Neither is it at all Navish, to bave the heart filled with a reverential fear and dread of God, upon the confideration of his tremenduous justice, and wrath in hell, against the miserable ob. jects thereof; and to be stirred up to duty thereby, Matth. X. 28. Heb. xii. 28, 29. To look thereunto, and move away towards God in the way of duty, with fear and trembling, is very agreeble to the State of those who have by faith received a kingdom that cannot be moved; but are not yet ascended into heaven : who are indeed drawn up out of the fearful depth; but are not as yet hauled up to the top of the rock, though the strong chain of the covenant is fo about them, that they shall never fall down again. For in heaven the awe and reverence of God, on that score, will be perfect, Isa. vi. 1, 2, 3. But it is flavilh for faints, to fear their being cast into hell for fin; and servile, to hope their obtaining heaven for their good works. And yet that Davith fear and servile hope, may creep in upon the children of the second covenant, and move them to duty: because their faith is weak, much of the old Adam remains in them, and it is not easy for them, though dead to the law in point of privilege, to be dead to it in point of practice. But these impure mixtures of felbilhness in their duties will be humb. ling unto them: and they will loath themselves, for that they act not, in their obedience, with more of the free spirit and son-like disposition. And their will in that case is accepted through Christ.
3. The Spirit of the covenant is a spirit of sympa. thy regulated by the covenant. There is a com