Imatges de pÓgina

ing of God's Spirit, which was their white raiment, Rev. iii. 18. Having thus obtained the white raiment, they found they were purged and healed; they saw their interest clear, their evidences were brightened, and God's testimony was sweetly felt; and this was the oil in their vessel, or the eye-salve of the great Physician. And thus, reader, their loins were girt, their lamps trimmed, their lights were burning, their raiment was on them; and the Lamb's wife had made herself ready, Rev. xix. 7. And now behold the bridegroom knocketh again, saying, "If any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him." And they answered, Come, Lord Jesus, come quickly. And immediately the door was opened, " and they that were ready went in with him to the marriage; and the door was shut."-The Master was risen up from a throne of grace, and was sat down on the throne of judgment; and mercy's door was shut.

And now come the refined Pharisees, with a part of their church liturgy; not Good Lord, deliver us; nor yet, We beseech thee to hear us, good Lord.-No; business now required haste; they were obliged to cut it short, as Peter did when he was sinking in the sea-" Lord, Lord, open to us!" But the expression of Lord, Lord, had no more success at mercy's door, in the day of judgment, than We beseech thee to hear us,

good Lord, has at a throne of grace without the Spirit. They found that the Lord was no friend to repetitions; but faithful to the word he had left upon record; namely, "Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is heaven," Mat. vii. 21.And this is his will, that we believe on the name of the Son of God for our justification.-Secondly, that we repent with an evangelical repentance, that brings us towards God; not with a legal repentance only, such as Judas had, for that drives us from God.-And, thirdly, that we worship God in spirit and in truth, for God seeks such worshippers to worship him, John iv. 23. To worship God in the Spirit shews that a man must be inspired, and approach God with a spiritual mind, with a spiritual understanding, 1 Cor. xiv. 15; with spiritual affections; and to pray as the Spirit operates on him, 2 Sam. vii. 27; and gives him utterance, Acts ii. 4. The words of his mouth must be the meditation of his heart, Psal. xix. 14. He must pray in spiritual faith, James i. 6. He must plow in spiritual hope, Prov. xiii. 12; and in spiritual expectation, Hab. ii. 1. Yea, he must pray against every thing of which the Spirit convinces him to be evil. And he must pray for every blessing which the Spirit convinces him of the need of, Heb. iv. 16. And he will find this blessed Spirit will

help his weaknesses, and kindle a willing frame when he is reluctant; a fervent frame when he is lifeless; yea, a bold frame when he has cause to blush and take shame to himself, Dan. ix. 7—9. Yea, and a believing frame, to enable him to call God father, as the prodigal son did, even when he was in a far country, Luke xv. 18. This blessed Spirit makes intercession for us according to the will of God revealed in his word, and never contrary to it, Rom. viii. 26, 27. To worship God in truth, implies that a man prays for what he truly feels the want of, Matt. v. 6; and that he prays to the only true God, whom he hath a scriptural and an experimental knowledge of; that he, by the Spirit, sees how all the glorious attributes of God harmonize together in Christ Jesus, the true substance and sacrifice of all the ceremonial types, figures, and shadows. To worship God in truth, is to let our lips and our hearts go together; to pray against every sin and error that the Spirit points out to us; to pray for every blessing that God has promised to give, and to take a scriptural warrant for it; and so address God in his own language, Hosea xiv. 2. This is spiritual, and this is true worship; and, if my reader tries this way, he will find the Spirit help his infirmities, and make intercession with groanings that cannot be uttered, Rom. viii. 26; even when he has grieved him. And, under the fervent influences of the

Spirit's intercession, he will be brought to know the very thoughts of the Lord concerning himself; and to pour out his very soul before him, and shew him all his trouble, Psal. cxlii. 2; and leave his burdens with him, Psal. lv. 22; like Hannah, that sweet female wrestler, when she went from her knees at Shiloh, with her blessed countenance no more sad, 1Sam. i. 18.

If my reader be a stranger to all that I have said about prayer, he has never yet prayed; he may have read prayers, and have said his prayers; but he never yet prayed so as to prevail with God. God takes no more notice of lip prayers, than I do of a parrot that calls to me on the road, when it neither knows what it says, nor whom it calls after.

But perhaps I have offended my reader already, in dwelling too long on this important subject; if so, thou mayest easily get rid of me, by doing as some (who are called Christians) have done with my ARMINIAN SKELETON; that is, throw it into the fire. And, if thou wast so to do, thou wouldest not be the first that the devil has stirred up to burn the rolls of truth. Jehoiakim, king of Judah, did the same, Jer. xxxvi. 23. The smoking vengeance of God upon himself, upon his seed, upon his servants, upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem, and upon the men of Judah, was all the wages that he got for this impious contempt of God, Jer. xxxvi. 31.

However, as some have burnt my Skeleton, I have done as God commanded Jeremiah to do; that is, I have wrote another, Jer. xxxvi 28.

Had I been a private Christian, I might not have published the dealings of God with my soul to the world; for I do not find that many private Christians have wrote of their experience in the scriptures, though there may be some; but a public minister ought to preach and write his own testimony, that his hearers may have the satisfaction of knowing that he is a minister "not of men, neither by man, but by Jesus Christ, and God the Father, who raised him from the dead," Gal. i. 1.

When a man preaches his own experience, it convinces the saints that the Spirit of God is " in him, a well of water, springing up into everlasting life," John iv. 14. And, as he speaks, this precious well keeps springing up to supply him with matter; as it is written, "Out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water. But this spake he of the spirit, which they that believed on him should receive," John vii. 38, 39. On purpose to refresh the bowels of the saints, Philemon 7. When a man relates from the pulpit the operations, the sweet influences, and the soulestablishing testimony, of the Spirit of Wisdom in his own soul, he gives the righteous an opportunity of trying their testimony by his; and, when he establishes his own testimony by the scrip

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