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humbly conceive Christ to mean by these extensively gracious words: And we may well suppose she had desired and prayed for deliverance from all evil, and the enjoyment of all good to its perfection in eternal salvation.
With what joy must she be filled, and every believer of the same strength of faith, who apprehends Christ, as it were, in particular speaking to him, Be it unto thee, even as thou wilt? And haw fast and far will his thoughts and desires fly after good things ? What a compass will they take ?
Looking dorerward, he will say, I desire to be delivered from the bottomless pit, that my soul may not be gathered with finners, nor my portion be with thein in their place of torment: And Christ will say, Be it unto thee even as thou wilt.
Looking inward, his language will be, O that I may be delivered from this body of death : The desire of my soul is to have sin mortified, and corruption at last utterly rooted out; guilt pardoned, transgressions forgiven, fears and doubts thereupon scattered, in order to my walking more comfortably with God. And considering the state I am in, in a world lying in wickedness, full of dangers, and where the roaring lion continually goeth about seeking whom he may devour ; May I be the charge of a special providence, to be kept from making shipwreck of faith and a good conscience ; escape the wiles of the devil, and repel his darts, and at last be more than a conqueror through him that loved me. Well, to all this Christ faith, Be it unto thee even as thou wilt.
Looking upward to the mansions of glory, the believer cries, o that heaven may be mine, and the Holy spirit dwell in me, in order to conduct me to it! May mine inheritance be among the saints in light, and my path like that of the juft, shining brighter and brighter unto the perfect day! May I have as much of the light of God's countenance, the sense of his love, the consolation of his Spirit, as he shall see good for me in my present state, and always carry it as one that is waiting for a better.
May I be affisted in all my remaining work, supported under all my burdens, grow in grace as I do in years, know and love God better the longer I walk with him ; and having been thus guided by his counsel even unto death, after it be received unto glory!
O the pleasure it must give the believing soul to have Christ say to all this, Amen, Be it unio thee even as thou wilt.
APPLICATION. I shall briefly apply this to you, introducing what I shall say by this word of attention used in the beginning of the text, Bebold.
1. Behold a woman, an heathen fo gloriously discovering her faith; and admire the change made by the grace of God wherever vouchsafed, and seek after it, and pray that you may be made partakers of it.
2. Behold a woman of Canaan, a believer, an eminent one ; and confidering her disadvantages, reflect with shame and forrow, that multitudes within the church come short of her attainments.
3. Bebold her in the struggles which she met with ; and learn thence, that great grace doth not exempt from great trials.
4. Bebold, how comfortable an answer she had from Christ, after all the discouragements given her by him ; and believe there is more love in Christ's heart towards his people, than he may
see fit presently to discover in his dealing with them. He objected to this Canaanitish woman, that she as one of that nation, was reputed as a dog by the Jews ; which was discouraging, before he came to speak thus encouragingly to her, Be it unto thee even as thou wilt.
5. Behold this, and conclude, those shall never be losers, who in a sense of their misery and Christ's ability to help, wait upon him and cry after him, let their cause be what it will.
Lastly, If Christ behold with pleasing wonder the strength of one grace in the souls of those who seek to him for help, with what delight will he view the perfection of every grace in such as are his people at the great day; and how ravishing the encouragement will then be that he will give to every one of them! He will say, Be it unto thee, (and in the fullest sense) even as thou wilt ; enter thou into the joy of thy Lord.
MATTH. XXII. II, 12, 13.
And when the King came in to see the guests, be
saw there a man which had not on a wedding
garment. And he saith unto him, Friend, how camest thou in
hither, not having on a wedding garment? And
he was speechless. Tben said the King to the seruats, Bind him, band
and foot, and take him away, and cast him into outer darkness : There Mall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.
UR blessed Lord had been instructing the
people concerning the kingdom of God by parables, as you read in the foregoing chapter : And we find him continuing his discourse to ' them about the same subject and in the fame way, in this. Ver. 1, 2. And Jesus answered and spake unto them again by parables, and said, The kingdom of heaven is like, &c. It is the same kingdom with the kingdom of God mentioned in the foregoing chapter, ver. 43. which is now called the kingdom of heaven in this : By which is meant, the gracious form of government set up by God in this fallen rebellious world, for the
salvation of lost mankind, and this in the last, clearest and most extensively kind administration or dispensation of it, predicted to take place under the New Testament times.
It may be called the kingdom of heaven, as it was contrived, and the whole plan of it laid and agreed upon in heaven; as it was set
in heaven, and revealed in all its rich grace from thence ; as its nature, tendence and efficacy is to make such as become true subjects of it, heavenly and holy; as those that enter into it, enter into the gate of heaven, and will have their consummation and reward as faithful subjects, in heaven itself, where this kingdom will receive its perfection; and for such like reasons.
Our Lord in this parable or instructive simi, litude with which he compares this kingdom, sets it forth in many things relating to its original rise and constitution, and also to the carrying it on and compleating of it at last. He sets it forth in its fupreme head and king ; in its mediator, chief minister and dispenser under him, by office, tho' not by nature; in the rich and royal favours prepared for, and promised to those that will become subjects of this kingdom ; in the embassadors sent to invite men at large to enter themselves subjects of it, and enjoy its privileges; and in several other respects, as you may see by reading the parable.
By the certain King which made a marriage for his son, is set forth, the blessed God, as in the moit astonishing manner, concerning himself about the recovery of fallen mankind to happiness.