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pose the confidence of their souls on me alone, and make publick confession of this their faith before the world.-Surely in the Lord have I righteousness and strength. A righteousness without spot, without defect, and in all respects consummate : such as satisfies every requirement of the law, and most thoroughly expiates all my iniquities. Such as renders me completely accepted before my judge, and entitles me to everlasting life.
Now the sinner, whose conscience is burden. ed with guilt and alarmed with danger, is not to hesitate-not to question whether his sins be too many or too great to be pardoned : because this would tacitly impeach the divine veracity; but to view the exhortation and the promise made to faith-to look instantly to Jesus, as the stung Israelite did to the brazen serpent, nothing doubting-viewing him as the only means appointed for relief, and firmly persuaded, because God hath said it, that whosoever looketh to him, or believeth in hins, shall receive remission of sins.
· Thus to believe, and thus to act, is to put honour on the head of Jesus—is to treat him as a Saviour--to regard his atonement as worthy of all acceptation-his blood as cleansing from all sin: and is, in fact, a renunciation of all personal worth as being in any degree the ground of forgiveness. It is a practical decla. ration, that in the Lord only we have righteousness and strength, peace and assurance for ever—that besides him there is no Saviour.
When the salvation of the soul becomes an object of attention, it is common for unconverted men to ask, as did those that followed Christ in the days of his humiliation, What shall we do, that we might work the works of God? The heavenly blessedness is always viewed as the reward of religious and moral duties that either have been, or are to be, performed. But the answer to this inquiry then was, and still is; "This is the work of God, that we believe on him, whom he hath sent.' Nor should it ever be forgotton, that the sal. vation of the gospel is by promise; which pro
211 mise is made, not to him that worketh; not to him that is less vile than his neighbour, but to faith-to the man, whatever be his cha. racter or his conduct, who believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly'--to him that shall
confess with his mouth the Lord Jesus, and that shall believe in his heart that God hath raised him from the dead. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.' Whosoever, therefore, shall thus believe, and thus confess, shall, as the scripture hath said, undoubtedly be saved.
We are apt to forget, or perhaps do not properly consider, that salvation originated in the sovereign pleasure of God—that it is a blessing which might, or might not have been conferred on the apostate sons of Adam: that the forgiveness of sin is not in any way connected with the moral qualifications they possess, or the duties they perform, but solely with the work and worth of his own Son, on whom they have no claim, and which, as a gift, is graciously bestowed on the absolutely unwor.
THE REFUGE.. thy-not as meriting mercy, but as deserving eternal ruin. It should also be remembered, that whatever is said concerning this salvation, is to be cordially believed on divine testimony, without the concurrent evidence of our senses; because it is an affair with which they are not conversant-of which they can take no cogni. zance. The inestimable blessing must also be regarded as allsufficient for the purposes intended, and as the only means by which eternal happiness can be enjoyed—as free for sinners, without exception of character, and as infallibly connected with faith. He, therefore, that shall see the plague of his own heartthat shall acknowledge it to be deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked-who shall contemplate a life spent in gratifying the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eye, and the pride of life—who shall feel his accumulated guilt as a load that might justly sink him into end. less perdition—and who, notwithstanding these apparent discouragements, shall believe with his heart the record, 'that God hath given to us eternal life, and that this life is in his Sonthat he was delivered for our offences, and was raised again for our justification that his blood cleanseth from all sin that his righteousness justifieth from all iniquity:' who shall gladly receive the cheering testimony, and confide in that testimony, in defiance of all the accusations of conscience, the suggestions of Satan, the frowns or the smiles of the world is strong in faith, giving glory to Godlays hold on eternal life, and shall undoubtedly be saved.
- For what is evangelịca! faith, says the very excellent and judicious Booth, but the receiving of Christ and his righteousness? Or, in other words, a dependence on Jesus only for eternal salvation? A dependence upon him as allsufficient to save the most guilty; as every way suitable to supply the wants of the most needy; and absolutely free for the vilest of sinners. The divine Redeemer and his fie nished work being the object of faith, and the report of the gospel its warrant and ground, to believe is to trust entirely and without reserve on the faithful word which God hath spoken, and, on the perfect work which Christ