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doors on purpose, that we who were Gen. , them humble, from ihat they can draw tiles shcuid be taken in, in their room; and encouragement to foster them in their pride. therefore we have caute to think better of God's taking of them into the vible ourselves, and more meanly of these. To church, when in his wra!h be had cut off this he answereth, 1. Well, I grant they others, should have made them to have are cast of, and you are come in their place. I kept themselves calm, and yet we see here, But 2. Because of unbelief they were broken it rather pufferh them up, so as they are eff. The true caufe which provoked God ready to fay, T he branches were broken of, to unchurch them, was, their own guilt and that I might be grafedin. fin, in rejeeting openly the covenant and III. Carnal profeffors do always look the offer of life and falvation in the Mef on their enjoyments and privileges, as fias; as we fee, Acts xiii. 46. 47. Next fomeway merited, and not as freely and he presseth them to humility, saying; Be undeservedly bestowed; I hou wilt say then, not bigh-minded, but fear; that is, For: 1 The branches were broken off, that I might be get noi yourself and your standing; fear graffed in. As if they had said, "The and tremble and wax humble: and bis rea Lord saw some worth in us, therefore he son is; You stand by faith, your standing unchurched them, and took us into their depends upon no worth in yourself, but up room. on your avowing of the covenant, and ad IV. In disputes concerning the truth, hering to the profession thereof; the not we should not stick at every thing, but doing whereof, was the cause why the freely yield all which may be granted; and Jews were cast off; and of such a faith and this will be a short way to come to clearnot of a justifying faith he is speaking : ness, as the apostle doth here, saying, for, 1. It is such a faith as may be quite Well, granting the thing which they had lost; but justifying faith can never be to said to be in part true, viz. so far as upon tally lost.
2. Such a faith as juftifies even the occasion of their rejecting of the gobefore men, unto the privileges of the spel, salvation canie to the Gentiles. church and covenant. 3. Which justifieth V. Tho'God is free to take his gospel root and branches into the covenant privi- away, when, and from whom, he please:h; leges. 4. A faith common to the whole yet ordinarily he takes not the gospel, and body of the Gentile world.
the ordinances thereof, from a people or a
nation where, and among whom, he has OBSERVATIONS.
once settled them, until he be provoked I. However the servants of God Thould thereto, by their wicked and gross carrifaithfully discharge their duty, and de- age: Because of unbelief they were broken off
. clare the privileges of a covenant to be due VI. One main cause which provoketh to such as God haih allowed them unto; | God to unchurch a people, and to take the yet they should to guard as none might have gospel and the ordinances of life from ground to insult and was too wanton; for them, is, When not only they do not this end, doth the apostle propose this ob- savingly make use thereof, by making in jection, to be answered; Thou wilt say to Jesus Christ thro' faith, and living in then, &c.
him; but also they do openly declare their II. As it is in all other lins, so it is in pride, renouncing of Christ, and of life thro' folks have it will to quit with it; so de- him, thro' open enmity against the very sirable is sin unto them, that what should ordinances of life: Because of unbelief they be means and motives to move them to caft were broken off. it away, proves a mean to keep it still; and VII. As a true and saving faith in Chrift, what ihould prove an argument to keep doth unite a foul to Christ, and implant
them in his invisible and mystical body, as
His verse containeth another arguliving members thereof; so an open pro ment by which he prefseth them to feffion of the true religion, of faith in Je humility and watchfulness, and whereby he lus, and of the expectation of salvation inforceth upon them the former exhortationly thro’ him, with a profession of obe-on, not to be high minded, but to fear. dience and subjection unto his laws and Thé argument liech thus, If thou hast no commandinents, makes a person or a people ground to plead exemption.from the judga members of Christ's visible body, and of ments of God; then halt thou cause not to his church and kingdom: Thou fandejt be high-minded, but to fear: but so it is by faith.
thou hast no ground to expect that God VIII. Pride and haughtiness of spirit will pass thee by, and ihis he cleareth thus, is altogether unbeseeming any who pro- If he spared not the Jews, thou hast no fess faith in Jesus Christ; and yet the great cause to think he will ipare thee; and the er their profession be, if there be not a ground of this is, because the Jews were true and lively faith at the root, the greater natural branches, they had, to speak so, a will the pride of their heart be; and there- kindly right, as kindly tenants, to the covefore the apostle warneth the Gentiles not nant, and to the privileges thereof, as being to be high-minded : Be not high-minded. the natural issue of Abraham, Isaac and
IX. That which maketh many a carnal Jacob,. when as the Gentiles were wild. professor too conceited, and thro' pride of heart to milken themselves, is, their for
OBSERVATIONS. geting the ground they stand upon; and I. So righteous and just is God, that right and serious thoughts of this, that they when he is provoked to anger by the evil stand upon no basis or foundation of their carriage of a people, or visible church, he own, but by faith, would make them have will not spare, but cut them off, were they low thoughts of themselves; Thou /land- nerer so privileged beyond others, and had dit by faith, says he, and then infererh, they never so many grounds whereupon to be not high-minded.
expect a perpetuiry of their standing : The X. It becomeih all who profess the name Jews, tho' natural branches, lineally deof Jesus, to be walking both soberly and scended of Abraham, Ifaac and Jacob, and in fear, knowing and cousidering what ha first in covenant, and this covenant-interest zard they are still in, what temptations runing down thro' many generations, yet they are liable unto, and what weakness they are not spared: If he spared not the and inability is in them to withstand; they natural branches. Gould be still upon their watch-tower, and II. God's cuting off and unchurching guarding against the aflaults of the devil : the people of the Jews, is a standing doBe not high-minded, but fear.
current to all churches, in all ages, and may XI. The more humble a poor soul be, be a ground of persuasion unto them, that in the sense of its own baleness, unworthi were they never so privileged beyond oress and weakness, the more warry and thers, if they prove contumacious and uncircumspect will that soul be in its walk; and worthy, they shall be cut off: If he spared where pride and self-conceit aboundech, not the natural branches, take heed left he i casts a foul loose and open to its ene allo Spare not thee. mies; Be not high-minded, but fear, goes III. The continual hazard that a church bell together.
or people is in, of being unchurched and
cut off from their church-privileges by VERSE 21. For if God spared not the natural | God, because of their walking unworthy branches, take heed left he also spare not thee. I of, and con:emning the light of the gospel
should make the most eminent church for thou abideft not in faith, but corrupt thy enjoyments and profession to walk lowly ways, and reject the gospel, ihou inalt be and ia fear; Be nut high-miniledt, diet fear. cut off, God will not spare thee. For if God spared not the natural brunches, take heert lejt he also spare not thee.
OBSERVATIONS. IV. A people or churches walking hum. I. It is no easy matter to keep a people, bly and in fear, conliğering always God's honoured with privileges and exernal enjustice, and their own frailey and finfulness, joyments, humble and watchful; but preis a notable mean to keep them from being fen:ly they grow proud and secure, ani! cut off, and to make them ftand; it is a therefore there is need of arguinents up. notable mean to prevent their unchurch on the back of arguments to alarm them, ing; for this liech in the bosom of the and to put them to their duty : for this argument, he would have them walking cause the apostle useth many arguments in fear, knowing that otherwise God will which he would not have necded to not spare them, if once they turn care- do, if one word would have been fuffiless, thro' pride and conceitedness: Be cient. not high-minded, but fear,...--left he also II. Tho' many look upon Go
God as alto. Spare not thee.
gether mercy and goodness, and thereby
encourage themselves in evil; yet he being VERSE 22. Behold therefore the goodness, the righteous Judge of the world, is jujt
and severity of God: on them which fell, and righteous also, and hath wrath to pour severity; but towards thee, goodness, if put upon the wicked and rebellious; he has thou continue in his goodness: otherwise severity; Belold the severity of God. thou also shalt be cut off.
III. Tho'God be most merciful and dow
to wrath, ready to pass by many prorocaE closeth this exhortarion here, by tions, and to bear with finners a long time;
suming up some arguments to yet when all that doth not prevail, but fií enforce it. In this verse we find four he is proroked to anger by people's corftrong motives, to a humble walking in temptuous carriage, he will at length enter fear. 1. Behold the severity of God towards into judgment; and when he is set down them that fell; consider seriously how God upon the throne of justice, he will examine dealt in strict justice with these who fell, their ways to the least, and as it were ahow he examined them very narrowly, and natomize, or cut up, every piece of their took notice of every particular, like a strict deportment, that inside and ourside both judge, examining the matter thoroughly, may be seen; and as nothing will be got and cuting it in pieces, for the more nar hid from his all-feeing eye, fo will he exrow examination and searching; and let ecuie judgment and justice, accordingly: this keep thee in a trembling posture. Behold the severity of God; this word ren2. Consider his goodness and bounty to dered severity, is a word fignifying cutting you; ready and prompt he was to shew as an anatomizer carefully cuteth every kindness to thee, out of love and affection; small lith and joint, and as a ftri& judge and let this work upon thy heart, humility narrowly searcherh out things, and ponand fear. 3. Consider how the tack which dereth and seriously considereth every cisthou hast of his goodnefs and kindness is cumstance. not absolute, but conditional; If thou abide IV. When God thus entereth into judge in his goodness; that is, If thou continue ment with a people, and dealech with them En faith, whereby his goodness may be according to strict justice, it is when they continued with thee. 4. Consider, how if | become ircorrigible and desperately wickel,
make them to fear
: Behold the Jeverity of THE apostle having thus pressed humi
and will take no warning, but wilfully fol- | them from others, walk not worthy of low the devices of their own heart: Be them, nor do those duties which are called bold the severity of God towards them that for at their hands; then will God be profell; that is, such as wilfully departed from voked to dry up the springs of his goodGod, and fell away from their constancy nefs, and draw back his hand; If thou conand profession.
tinue in his goodnefs : otherways thou also V. It is the duty of Christians to be malt be cut off. looking to the dispensations of God even XI. Serious thoughts of the hazard towards others, and reading his mind upon which we are in of losing our privileges, his sharp and fore judgments upon other will make us keep a low sail
, and walk humneighbours about them: Behold the leve bly under our enjoyments; for this is anrily of God.
other motive; Other ways thou also malt be vi. A serious and conscientious confi. cut off dering of God's executing justice and judg: ment upon finners about us, will prove a VERSE 2 3. And they also, if they bide not notable mean to keep us humble, and to fill in unbelief, shall be graffed in: for cause us pass the time of our sojourning God is able to graff them in again. here in fear; for this is the argument to keep them from being high-minded, and
lity upon the believing Gentiles, he God on them thai fell.
returns to speak of the conversion of the VII. Tho' God be executing judgment, Jews; and in this verse he layeth down a according to strict justice, upon obstinate fourth argument proving the same, which rebels; yet all that will not so shut out his he further explaineth in the next verse. goodness, but such as he hath a mind to The argument is taken from God's power; manifest his goodness unio, shall, notwith God is able to graff them in again: for as instanding thereof, taste of the fame: But probable and unlikely like a thing it seemtowards thce goodness.
eth to be, to say that the Jews, who have VIII. God's goodness towards us, in the been long cut off, shall ever be taken in atime when his anger and displeasure is gain; yet there is nothing too hard for broken forth upon others, should lay strong God, all things are possible with him; and bonds on us to walk humbly before God; because this would seem a loose argument for this is the argument by which he press to say, God is able to do it, therefore it eth these to humility, Behold the goodness Mall be; because God is able to do many of God...to thee: As his goodness should things, which he will never do; therefore then be most remarkable, so should the the apostle sets down the sum and substance sense of it have the deeper impression up- of the covenant, as the basis of this argu
ment; and so it is true the argument a pose ix. As we should always remember that ad elle, or from God's power and abilility, te are but Tenants at will, and have not to prove that a thing shall be, is not strongan absolute and erernal tack of his good. ly conclusive; but where his faithfulness is ness; fo the thoi ts of this should I ep engaged, and his promise or covenant lay. us humble and mindful of our duty; t re- eth the ground, then such an argument as fore he addeth, as another motive, ihou this may be well built upon it. Therefore dontinue in his goodness.
he says; And they also, if they bide not pilt X. When a people whom God hat 10- in unbelief, Mall be graffed in again; that toured greatly with privileges, and made ' is, If once they shall repent, and return partakers thereof when he hath removed from their faithlessness and unbelief, then
3 M 2
they shall be grasfed in again, It was be III. When God has once begun iu smile caule of their
unbelief, they were cut off, a people, and denude them of their priand when this fin of theirs shall be at an vileges and enjoyments which they have end, then shall' they be graffed in; for this once been favoured with, for their conis the nature of the covenant, that they tempt thereof, and their unworthy walkfhall be owned as his people, so long as ing thereunto; so long as they continue in they walk as his people; and when they their tins, and are not turning home by repent, he will remember their iniquities repentance, they have no ground to es. no more; and this ground being laid down, pet that God Mall cast the whip out of then God's almighty power comes fitly in
his hand, and return to them with his wontto loose all knois. Neither doth this.if, ed mercies and loving-kindi sües ; for or supposition, make the matter uncertain, when he says if they abire net fill in but hereby the Lord's way of doing good unbelief, they fall be graffed in, he supporto his people is held forth: This is his eth, that it, or as long as they, abide in method of doing good to his people, first unbelief, they shall not be graffed in. they must repent and turn from their IV. How long soever a people that wickedness, which they cannot do without are in covenant wiih God, fhall be lying his grace, and then followeth his mercy
under the fore rod of an angry God, and and goodness.
how improbable foever it seem, that that OBSERVATIONS.
people thall again be restored to their I. Tho' people, when God is entering wonted dignity and privileges; yet when into judgment with them, be ready to that people shall reluro to the Most High take up hard and unsuitable thoughts of by unfeigned repentance, and avouch their him, and of his procedure, and to account owning of him as theirs, he both can and him too rigorous and severe upon them; will nianifest himself unto them, as in the yet if they would search their own ways days of old, and honour them as before: more narrowly, they would find just cause for the Jews, for as long as they have been why God should deal fo with them: there drinking of the cup of God's ancer, fall fore to clear the ground of God's severity be graffed in, when ever they fhall leave which he used towards the Jews, he sets off their course of unbelief, and look to their unbelief here, as the cause of it, say him whom they. have pierced, by a true ing, And they also, if they abide not fill faish: And they also, if they bide not still in unbelief, &c.
in unbelief, Mall be groffed in again. II. When a people have once turned V. God's purposes and decrees, tho? their back on God, and are runing down the they be absolute in themselves, yet should hill, by apostacy and defection, it is not they not loose our hands from diligence in an easy matter to recover them soon again; sering about the means whereby God, in but so fatisfied are they with their ways, his ordinary way of dispensation, brings and such delight take they to follow the about the execution of these decrees of imaginations of their own vain hearts, his, but rather should stir us up to ferven. that it is no easy matter to get them re cy and diligence : for tho' the apostle be claimed, nor is it ordinary to see them re here proving, that God hath indeed a purpent and return for a long time : for the pose to graff the Jews in again, yet the Jews here turned their backs on God thro' means to that end are comprehended in that unbelief, and have continued in that con same purpose ; and therefore he says here, dition many ages; and this the apoille sup they Mall be graffed in, if they bide nist poseth, when he says, if they abide not still still in unbelief : Not as if this is made the in unbelief, &c.
matter pendulous and uncertain, but as