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Full text of "The works of Thomas Goodwin"

^gS« OF PWNC?^ 
OCT 101988 J 

L ogical sEtt ^^ 

BX 9315 .G66 1861 v. 6 
Goodwin, Thomas, 1600-1680. 
The works of Thomas Goodwin 







W. LINDSAY ALEXANDER, D.D., Professor of Theology, Congregational 
Union, Edinburgh. 

JAMES BEGG, D.D., Minister of Newington Free Church, Edinburgh. 

THOMAS J. CRAWFORD, D.D., S.T.P., Professor of Divinity, University, 

D. T. K. DRUMMOND, M.A., Minister of St Thomas's Episcopal Church, 

WILLIAM H. GOOLD, D.D., Professor cf Biblical Literature and Church 
History, Reformed Presbyterian Church, Edinburgh. 

ANDREW THOMSON, D.D., Minister of Broughton Place United Presby- 
terian Church, Edinburgh. 

<5nural ©Dt'tor. 
REV. THOMAS SMITH, MA., Edinbuegh. 





mixih &mnl $«fa« 



^ntr Memoir 










prtntkd by ballanttne and compact, 
Paul's work. 




The great and mysterious truth of the trinity of persons in one God, which 
is the foundation of our Christian faith, and which, though not contrary to 
our reason, is so much ahove it, that we could never have had a thought 
of it, if God had not revealed it to us in his word, is not a mere speculative 
notion, but a truth, in which the faith and practice of a Christian is con- 
cerned ; insomuch as it is necessary that every one who is saved should 
believe that there are three persons, one and the same infinite, eternal God, 
blessed for evermore. For how can we believe that God hath chosen any 
of mankind, to make them unchangeably and for ever happy ; that the same 
God hath redeemed and doth sanctify these his elect, if we do not believe 
that this one and the same God is three persons, to whom these works, so 
necessary to our salvation, are in the holy Scriptures distinctly attributed ? 
How can we trust in the God of all grace, and his infinite mercies, and 
adore and love him for that great and indeed unspeakable love, in sending 
his only-begotten Son to die for us ? And how can we act faith on our 
blessed Eedeemer, as having voluntarily come into the world to accomplish 
the work which his Father sent him to do, unless we have distinct thoughts 
of the person of the Father sending, as distinct from the person of the Son 
sent by him ? And these persons are equally God ; for any one inferior 
could no more have redeemed us than he could have elected or created us. 
But they are not so many several Gods ; therefore they are one and the 
same God, equal in all perfections and glory. The author hath discoursed 
of the work of God the Father in the second volume of his Works ; and of 
the work of God the Son in the third, with great clearness of light from 
the Scripture, and consequently with as great a strength of evidence to 
every spiritual mind. In the discourses of this fifth volume he as clearly 
and evidently describes in all its glory the work peculiar to the Spirit, in 
healing and restoring our depraved, wretched natures, by making them alive 
unto God, and sanctifying them in likeness to him. It is a work which 
demonstrates him to be true God, as well as the Father and Son are ; for 
life is that which God only can give, and a creating power is as necessary 
to produce a spiritual as a natural life. Nay, of the two it is more difficult 

* This preface to the fifth volume of Goodwin's Works, as published by his son, 
is given here, as being mainly applicable to the contents of this volume. — Ed. 


(though nothing is so to God) to raise a dead soul than a dead body. It 
is also as much a work of* God to make us partakers of the divine nature 
(2 Pet. i. 4), as it was to make Adam at first after his own image. That 
none may think these truths to be merely niceties or abstruse controversies, 
and an inquiry into them needless, the author hath made, through all the 
discourses, proper and pertinent uses, naturally flowing from the doctrines ; 
which may evince, that as all the truths of the gospel have in their own 
nature a fitness and a proper tendency to strengthen our faith, and to im- 
prove our holiness, and to make us not only wiser but better, so God hath 
revealed them as needful to be known by us for these purposes. And as 
the gospel is peculiarly suited to raise and tune our hearts to thankful 
strains and cheerful praises of our Lord Jesus Christ (and in honouring 
him we honour the Father also), so this doctrine of the work of the Holy 
Spirit in our salvation, which is pure gospel too, is adapted to excite us to 
give that glory to him which is due ; and in honouring him, we honour 
both the Father and the Son. I have given on the other side of this leaf 
a catalogue of the MSS. in this volume, that the reader may be satisfied that 
he hath all which I promised in the proposals ; and also may see that I 
present him with several other discourses, which I did not offer in them. 

I am, 

Thine entirely in the service of the gospel, 


A CATALOGUE of the Manuscripts in the Discourse of the Work 
of the Holy Spirit in our Salvation, directing in what part of 
the volume the several MSS. are printed. 

1. A general and brief scheme of the whole work committed to the Holy 

Spirit in bringing us to salvation, in an enumeration of all particulars, 
and what is the glory due to him for it, is contained in Book I., Chap. 
1, 2, 3, 4, 5, G. 

2. Of the gift of the Holy Ghost to us. — How he is at first given to the 

elect when called, and what is his indwelling within us for ever. 
Chap. 8, 9, 10. 

3. How the work of regeneration, or the first application of salvation to 

us, is in a peculiar manner attributed to the Holy Ghost. Chap. 7. 

4. That there arc two states and conditions God carries the elect through — 

1. The state of nature. 2. The state of grace. — And how the new 
birth is the passage between these two states, from which the neces- 
sity of regeneration is demonstrated. Book II., Chap. 1, 2, 3. 

5. That God, for holy and just ends, permits the generality of his elect 

that live to riper j'ears, to abide some time in that estate of nature, 
and then renews and turns them. Cliap. 4, 5, G, 7, 8. 

\ i \ rAiiOatJS, so. vii 

G. The necessity of regeneration demonstrated by arguments drawn from 
tho nature of reconciliation with God. — That all which God and 
Christ have done towards their reconciliation to us, will not benefit 
us unless we be reconciled to God. — This work of regeneration set 
forth under tho notion of reconciliation to God, and some differences 
of a counterfeit work and a saving work discovered thereby, with an 
exhortation to be reconciled to God. Book III. throughout. 

7. The necessity of tho new birth, and some briet explication of the 

nature of .the thing begotten in it, as the similitude of begetting 
again imports. Book IV., Chap. 1. 

8. The eminency of mercy and grace discovered in this work, compara- 

tively with other works wrought in us. Book IX., Chap. 1, 2, 3. 

9. The divine power put forth by God in a saving work of regeneration. 

Chap. 4, 5. 

10. Of the new creature, or the thing begotten in us by the Spirit ; that 

beside his indwelling in us, and his acting of our spirits, there 
are permanent or abiding principles inwrought in the soul; that is, 
spiritual habiliments, or dispositions so to act. Book V., Chap. 1, 2. 

11. The nature or kind of the thing begotten in us, as it is set forth under 

the notion of Spirit ; that which is born of the Spirit is Spirit, John 
hi. 6. Book IV., Chap. 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8. 

12. That this new creature is a change of the heart. Book V., Chap. 4. 

13. That it is a different and higher principle than natural conscience, in 

its greatest elevation of light. Book VI. throughout. 

14. That this new creature is peculiar only to the elect, and is a thing 

specially different from the common work of the Spirit in temporaries. 
Book VI., Chap 13, and Book VII. throughout. 

15. That the virtual cause of regeneration, is the resurrection of Jesus 

Christ. Book IX., Chap. 6. 

16. Of the three parts of regeneration, and the new creature. 1. Humilia- 

tion for sin, and the necessity thereof. 2. Faith in Christ for justi- 
fication. 3. Turning from sin unto God. Book VIII. throughout. 

17. The nature and way of conversion illustrated from an instance of what 

it was in Job's time, Job xxxiii., and in the instance of Paul's con- 
version. Chap. 3. 

18. Of one eminent disposition of a man born again, which is to desire and 

endeavour to convert others to God. Book X., Chap. 7. 

19. Of the distinguishing character of this new creature, or of a man born 

again : which is for a man to make God his chiefest good, and God's 
glory his utmost end. Chap. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6. 





A general and brief scheme of the whole of the work committed 
to the Holy Spirit in bringing us to salvation, in an enume- 
ration of all particulars, and of the glory due unto him for 
it. The work of the Holy Spirit in the unction of Jesus to 
be our Saviour . . . . • • 3 

Chapter I. ...... 8 

Some general observations premised out of John xiv., xv., xvi. 

Chapter II. ...... 7 

Some further observations touching the coming of the Holy 
Ghost. His signal coming at Pentecost. The great change 
made in the world thereby. 
Chapter HI. ....... 10 

Of the works of the Holy Ghost upon Christ our Saviour. 
Chapter IV. ....... 18 

His operations upon the church, and that, first, as collec- 
tively taken. 

Chapter V. . . . . • • 16 

His operations in every part and_m ember of the church. 

Chapter VI. ....... 39 

The uses of the precedent doctrine. 

Chapter VII. . . . . • • 47 

The Holy Ghost the author of regeneration, or the first ap- 
plications of salvation to us. 

Chapter VIII. ...... 5 

The Holy Ghost the gift of God the Father to us, in and by 
Jesus Christ. This inestimable gift bestowed freely by 
the pure mercy, grace, and love of God. 


Chapter IX. ....... 

Wo not only partake of tho effects of the Holy Spirit's ope- 
rations in us, but also of bis person dwelling in us. 

Chapter X. 

Tbo uses of tbe foregoing doctrine. 





That there are two states or conditions through which God carries 
the elect : the state of nature, and the state of grace. That 
the new birth is the passage between them, which evidenc- 
eth the necessity of the new birth, or regeneration. The 
reasons why God hath so ordered it, that the generality of 
the elect, who live to riper years, should for some time re- 
main in that state of nature before he renews them. The 
uses of the doctrine, ..... 73 

Chapter I. ....... 73 

The words of the text, Tit. iii. 4-7, explained ; the elect in 
a state of sin and wrath before they are brought into a 
state of grace. 

Chapter II. . . . . . . . 78 

By the new birth, an elect soul is translated from a state of 
sin and wrath into a state of grace. — Whether we are re- 
generated or no. The state of the unregenerate alterable. 

Chapter III. ....... 85 

All God's elect do not, before their regeneration, remain in 
that state of sin and wrath. 

Chapter IV. ....... 88 

Beasons why God suffers his elect, grown unto riper years, 
to continue for some time in a state of sin. 

Chapter V. . v _ . . . . . 95 

The same continued. 

Chapter VI. ....... 101 

The uses of the foregoing doctrine. 

Chapter VII. ...... 109 

The same continued. 

Chapter VIII. .,..., Ill 

The same continued. 


The necessity of regeneration demonstrated by this argument, 
that all that God and Christ have done towards their recon- 
ciliation to us will profit us nothing, unless we be reconciled 
to God. And how conversion is set forth under the notion 
of reconciliation as on our part, .... 



Chapter I. . . . . . .117 

Reconciliation to God necessary if ever we be saved ; proved 
from God's design in his reconciliation to us, to glorify 
his holiness, &c. 
Chapter II. . . . . . . ,120 

Evinced from Christ's design in his work of reconciliation. 
Chapter in. ....... 125 

Necessary for us to be convinced that we are enemies to God ; 
that our estate is dangerous ; that yet God is appeasable ; 
that there is a Mediator by whom the soul may come to 
God ; that we must also seek God and his favour in Christ ; 
and seek him with confession of, and mourning for, sin. 

Chapter IY. . . . . . . . 129 

"Wherein our reconciliation to God consists. 
Chapter Y. . . . . . . 1-40 

The application or uses of the foregoing doctrine. 


Of the work which the Holy Spirit effecteth in us, as it is ex- 
pressed under the notion of our being begotten unto God, 
and of a qfl w birth, from which the necessity of regeneration 
is further demonstrated. Of the nature of the thing begotten 
in us, as it is set forth under the notion of Spirit, John hi. 6, 151 

Chapter I. . . . . . . . 151 

The necessity of the new birth demonstrated, and the nature 
of it described, from the notion of our being begotten unto 
God, 1 Peter i. 3-5. 

Chapter II. . . . . . . .158 

Exposition of John iii. 5. 

Chapter HI. . . . . . . .162 

The same continued. 

Chapter IV. ....... 1G4 

What it is to have the heart elevated, and suited to all things 

spiritual, as spiritual. 

Chapter V. . . . . . . . 107 

Suitableness of the mind to spiritual things, the great dis- 
tinguishing character of one that is born of the Spirit, 
John iii. 5, from others who are not so. 

Chapter VI. ....... 174 

How we may discern, value, and love spiritual things, purely 
as spiritual, and yet view them as blessings to us ; and 
regard and affect our own interest and benefit in them. 

Chapter VH. ...... 178 

The blessings which we have by Christ purely spiritual ; 
how a spiritual heart considers and affects them in their 
pure spirituality. 



Chapter VIII. . . . . . .183 

How a spiritual heart is affected to inherent graces and holy 


Of the work of the Holy Ghost in us, as it is represented to us 
under the notion of a joew creature. That besides the Holy 
Spirit's indwelling in us, and his motions and actings of our 
spirits, there are permanent or abiding principles wrought in 
our souls, which dispose them for holy actions, and give 
spiritual abilities for the performance of them. That this 
new creature is a change of the heart. That it is a con- 
formity to the image of our Lord Jesus Christ, . 187 

Chapter I. . . . . . . 187 

Exciting and moving grace not all that the Spirit doth for 
us to enable us to the performance of holy actions. 
Works of grace inherent. Opinions of the popish doctors, 
of the Amiinians, and of some enthusiastics, considered. 

Chapter II. . . . . . . . 191 

The Holy Ghost, when he makes us new creatures, works in 
us fixed and abiding principles of a spiritual life. 

Chapter III. ...... 201 

The same continued. 

Chapter IV. ...... 203 

Necessary, and congruous to the nature of things, that such 
inward permanent principles should be wrought in us by 
the Holy Ghost. 

Chapter V. ....... 211 

The new creature wrought in us by the Spirit of God, a 
change of heart. 

Chapter VI. ...... 217 

The new creature in us a conformity to the image of Christ. 

BOOK VI. -- 

That the work of grace wrought in us by the Spirit of God in 
regeneration, is a different and higher principle than natural 
conscience in its greatest elevation of light. The deficiency 
of natural conscience shewed, and the mistakes of men about 
it detected, ...... 231 

Chapter I. . . . . . . . 231 

All men under a covenant of works, or a covenant of grace. 
Two principles of actions, Rom ii. 14, 15 and Jer. xxxi. 
31-33 explained. The principle by which the law of God 
reigns over men is conscience. Notions of the philoso- 
phers among the heathens. 



Chapter II. . . . . . . .238 

Natural light of conscience in unregenerate men hath a great 
influence on their actions. 

Chapter III. . ..... 245 

Men are apt to regard the natural light of conscience, and 
the influence of it, to be the effects of true grace. 

Chapter IV. . ...... 252 

Wherein natural conscience falls short of true grace. 

Chapter V. . . . . . . . 2G2 

What goodness, and of what kind, is to be acknowledged to 
be in this light from God vouchsafed to natural conscience. 

Chapter VI. . . 2G8 

What is necessary to make conscience a good and holy con- 

Chapter VII. . ..... 278 

Natural conscience deficient in that which is necessary to 
make it really holy. 

Chapter VEIL ...... 283 

Grounds of the mistake in judging the acting of natural con- 
science to be the workings of a principle of true grace. 

Chapter IX. . . .... 289 

Natural conscience may approve of the law, and command 
the duties enjoined. 

Chapter X. . . . . . . .296 

Though natural conscience may prevail with men to do the 
duties required, yet not for conscience sake, in the sense 
which the Scripture gives. 

Chapter XI. ....... 301 

Another deficiency in natural conscience. 

Chapter XII. ...... 304 

The deficiency of natural conscience in another of its effects. 

Chapter XIII. ...... 319 

The highest degree to which a temporary believer can pos- 
sibly attain falls short of that saving work wrought in a 
sincere believer. 


Of the difference of the works on temporary believers, and those 

truly called, and that they differ in their nature and kind, . 324 

Chapter I. . . . . . . . 324 

Distinction between temporary professors and those truly 

Chapter II. . . . . . . .326 

Usefulness of this doctrine concerning temporary believers, 
to many holy ends and purposes. 



Chapter III. . ..... 335 

A genuine saving work of graco specifically distinct from 
that which is in a temporary beliover. 
Chapter IV. . .... 345 

Tho same continued. 

BOOK VIII. v/ -■'. . 

That there aro three parts of our regeneration. 1. Humiliation 
for sin, and the necessity thereof in order to faith. 2. 
Faith in Christ for justification. 3. Turning from sin unto 
God, or holiness of heart and life, proved from the work 
which our Lord Jesus Christ ascribes to the Holy Ghost, 
John xvi. 7—11, from the instances of conversion in the time 
when Job lived, and of the conversion of the apostle Paul. 
Of the subservience of humiliation unto faith. Objections 
answered. Of our turning from sin unto God, or of holi- 
ness in heart and life, ..... 359 

Chapter I. . . . . . . . 359 

Conviction of sin, humiliation for it, faith in Jesus Christ, 
sanctification, or amendment of heart and life, the parts 
of our conversion to God, John xvi. 7-11. 
Chapter II. . . . . . . 361 

To convince us of sin, and to humble us in the sense of it, 
is the work of the Holy Ghost in converting us to God. 
Chapter IH. ...... 366 

Instances of conversion in the time of Job. Instance of the 
apostle Paul's conversion. 
Chapter IV. ...... 382 

Use and subservience of conviction of sin, and humiliation 
for it, to induce the soul to believe on Jesus Christ for 
Chapter V. . . . . . . .385 

Answers to several objections made against the usefulness of 
conviction and humiliation. 

Chapter VI. ...... 389 

Of the last part of our conversion, which is our turning from 
our evil thoughts and ways unto God. 


Of the eminency of mercy and grace discovered in this work of 
regeneration, comparatively with other works wrought in 
us. Of the greatness of the power which God manifests in 
regenerating us. Of the influence which Christ's resurrec- 
tion hath on our regeneration, . . . .405 

Chapter I. . . . . . . 405 

The eminent mercy of God towards us in our regeneration. 

Chapter II. . . . , . . 410 

The same continued. 


Chapter III. .«••■• 416 

The same continued. 

Chapter IV. ...... 425 

An exceeding greatness of God's power apparent in our 

Chapter V. . . , . . « . 443 

The same continued. 

Chapter VI. ...... 455 

The virtual cause of regeneration is the resurrection of Jesus 


Of the two essential properties of inherent holiness and sanctifica- 
tion. That a regenerate man makes God his chiefest good. 
That he also sets up God and his glory as his chiefest end. 
A trial of difference between a regenerate and unregenerate 
man herein. That there is also an eminent disposition in 
the new 'creature, inclining a regenerate man, earnestly to 
desire and endeavour to convert others to God, . . 459 

Chapter I. . . . . . . 459 

Every man hath something which he makes his chiefest good. 
Two chief treasuries in which the good things of men are 
laid, viz., heaven and earth. 

Chapter II. ...... 464 

In what things we take most pleasure and delight. 

Chapter III. . . •..".'• * 470 

By what things the comfort of our lives is principally main- 
tained and upheld. 

Chapter IV. ...... 475 

What are the things which we value as our dearest treasures. 

Chapter V. . . • _ . . . . 489 

The account upon what it is that we most value ourselves, 
and other men. 

Chapter VI. ...... 497 

How the new creature makes God and his glory its utmost 

Chapter VII. ... . . . 509 

One eminent disposition immediately flowing from the new 
creature, is a desire to convert, and beget others to God. 


(the third person of the trinity) 


Voi VI. 



A general and brief seheme of the whole of that work committed to the Holy 
Spirit in bringing us to salvation ; in an enumeration of all particulars, 
and of the glory due unto him for it. — The work of the Holy Spirit in the 
unction of Jesus to be our Saviour. 


Some general observations premised out of the fourteenth, fifteenth, and 
sixteenth chapters of St Johns Gospel. 

Theee is a general omission in the saints of God, in their not giving the 
Holy Ghost that glory that is due to his person, and for his great work of 
salvation in us, insomuch that we have in our hearts almost lost this third 
person. We give daily in our thoughts, prayers, affections, and speeches, 
an honour to the Father and the Son ; hut who almost directs the aims of 
his praise (more than in that general way of doxology we use to close our 
prayers with, ' All glory be,' &c.) unto God the Holy Ghost ? He is a 
person in the Godhead equal with the Father and the Son ; and the work 
he doth for us in its kind, is as great as those of the Father or the Son. 
Therefore, by the equity of all law, a proportionable honour from us is due 
to him. God's ordination amongst men is, that we should ' render to all 
their due, honour to whom honour is due,' Rom. xiii. 1. To the magis- 
tracy (which there he speaks it of) according to their place and dignity ; 
and this he makes a debt, a due, ver. 8. And the like is enjoined con- 
cerning ministers, that are instruments of our spiritual good, that we should 
1 esteem them very highly for their work's sake,' 1 Thes. v. 13. Let the 
same law, I beseech you, take place in your hearts towards the Holy 
Ghost, as well as the other two persons of the Trinity. The Holy Ghost is 

indeed the last in order of the persons, as proceeding from the other two, 
yet in the participation of the Godhead he is equal with them both ; and 
in his work, though it be last done for us, he is not behind them, nor in 


the glory of it inferior to what they have in theirs. And indeed he would 
not be God, equal with the Father and the Son, if the work allotted to him, 
to shew he is God, were not equal unto each of theirs. And indeed, no 
less than all that is done, or to be done in us, was left to the Holy Ghost's 
share, for the ultimate execution of it ; and it was not left him as the re- 
fuse, i* being as necessary and as great as any of theirs. But he being the 
last person, took his own lot of the works about our salvation, which are the 
last, which is to apply all, and to make all actually ours, whatever the other 
two had done afore for us. The scope of this treatise is to set forth this 
work to you in the amplitude of it, to the end you may accordingly in your 
hearts honour this blessed and holy Spirit. And surely if to neglect the 
notice and observation of an attribute of God, eminently imprinted on such 
or such a work of God's, as of power in the creation, justice in governing the 
world, mercy in bearing with sinners, grace in our salvation ; if this be 
made so great a sin (Rom. i.) then it must be deemed a greater diminution 
to the Godhead to neglect the glorifying one of these persons, who is pos- 
sessed of the whole Godhead and attributes, when he is manifested or in- 
terested in any work most gloriously. 

In prosecution of my design, to persuade you to honour the Holy Ghost 
as you do the Father and the Son, I shall consider the 14th, 15th, and 
16th chapters of John, and make some general observations upon various 
passages in those chapters serving to this purpose ; and we shall see therein 
what a valuation the Father and the Son, the other persons with him, have 
in those chapters put upon him and his work, and what a great and singular 
matter they make of his work, and what divine esteem of his person, as by 
Christ's speeches scattered up and down therein appears. Though the 
Father himself doth not immediately speak, yet the Son doth in his name, 
as well as in his own. And you may well take their judgments, for they 
are sharers and co-rivals with him in point of glory about our salvation ; 
the work of which I shall only treat of. 

There are these general observations which I shall n:ake upon the whole 
series of the aforesaid chapters, which serve the design of my discourse. 

Obs. 1. First, Our Saviour had abundantly in all his former sermons 
discoursed both his work and hand in our salvation, # as also his Father's; 
and now at last, just when he was to go out of the world, he then, and not 
till then, doth more plainly and more fully discover to them this third_per- 
son, that had an after-work left to him, who to that end was to come when 
he should be gone, and was to come visibly upon the stage, to act visibly a 
new scene of works, left by the Father and himself unto him: John xiv. 10, 
.' I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter.' He 
had said, chap. viii. 17, that ' the testimony of two men' (or persons) ' is 
true ; ' and that he himself was one witness of those two there spoken of, 
and his Father another: ver. 18, ' I am one that bear witness of myself, and 
the Father that sent me beareth witness of me.' And he tells us here, you 
see, that there is yet another, distinct from the Father and himself; for in his 
saying, ' I will pray the Father to give you another Comforter,' he must 
mean a third person, distinct from them both, to be that other. And more- 
over this Spirit, as another person, is said likewise to be a third witness of, 
and unto Christ ; John xv. 26, and so is to be joined as a person, and third 
witness with these two : ' When the Comforter is come, whom I will send 
unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from 
the Father, he shall testify of me ; ' like as of the Father and himself, the 
same had been spoken in that chap. viii. ver. 18, last cited. And the 

Chap. 1.1 in our salvation'. 6 

coherence with vet. 17 argues their being witnesses alike* to be distinct 
persons each from other, for, ver. 17, he allegeth the law, ' It is written 
in your law, that the testimony of two men is true' For therein lies the 
validity of their testimony, that they must he two men or two persons that 
m ke up a legal testimony. And in this 15th chap. ver. 2(!, there is the 
Holy Ghost as a third witness brought into court to testify with both ; and 
therefore he is a person if a witness, for there are three persons if three 
witnesses, and the law itself he cites says, ' Under the mouth of two or 
three witnesses shall the matter be established,' Deut. xix. 15, and Matt, 
xviii. 16. 1 We may also observe how industriously careful Christ is further 
to characterise this person of the Holy Spirit, the author of these works, 
and to describe who ho was, and what. manner of person, that they might 
be sure to mind him, and have a regard to him, and to know whom and to 
what name thej 7 were to be so much beholden. Thus, ver. 26, ' The Com-, 
forter, which is the Holy Ghost' (says he) ; and ver. 17, ' Even the Spirit' 
of truth ; ' and chap. xv. 26, ' Whom I will send unto you from the Father, 
who procecdeth from the Father.' Which last addition is to shew the 
divine procession of the Holy Ghost, and the original and the consubstan- 
tiality of his person, to be out of the substance of the Father, proceed- 
ing from him ; as (1 Cor. ii. 12) the apostle signaiiseth him, ' The Spirit 
that is out of God ; ' or (which is all one) that hath his subsistence, or his / 
being a person, by proceeding from God the Father, and so being God with fl 
God, insomuch as it is not in anywise to be understood that he subsisted l| 
extra J hum., out of, or separate from God ; for he had said, ver. 11, that! 
he is in God, even as the spirit of a man is said to be in him. 

Some would understand that speech of Christ's, ' Who proceedeth from 
the Father,' to be meant in respect of God's sending him forth to us, and 
his embassage to us. But that had been said by Christ in the words afore, 
' Whom I will send from the Father ;' and therefore to intend the words 
after — ' Who cometh from the Father' — of an ambassador's sending, had 
been needless, for Christ had said that already ; and therefore if that had 
been all the meaning of that addition, he had but said the same over a second 
time. There is therefore, in those speeches, a manifest distinguishing be- 
tween that dis pensato ry sending of him from the Father to them, and that 
substantial proceeding of his from the Father, as a third pers on ; and this is 
adde^d to shew tlie original ground , why it must be from tne Fatti er that he 
sends him, and with his consent first had ; because his very person is by 
proceeding from the Father, and therefore this his office toix AncTthefe"- 
fore that latter is spoken in the present time, whereas that other speech of 
Christ's, ' Whom I will send from the Father,' is in the future ; because the 
Holy Ghost his dispensatory sending, both from the Father and from Christ, 
was yet to come ; whereas this personal proc^"dihg~orK^"From the Father j 
was then, when he spake it, and is continually, and had been from eternity, i 

Now the tendency of these reiterated designations of the person, doth 
manifest Christ's sedulous intention, and tender regard to, and for the 
honour of this, so great a person ; and to raise up in their hearts a valua- 
tion of this person himself, that should be the Comforter ; and to make 
them careful to give glory to him, even the Holy Ghost, as a third person, 
and the Comforter. As likewise to assure them of his coming upon them, 
when himself was gone ; and that therefore they might honour him in his 
coming, for his work, as he would have them to honour himself for his own 
work, and coming in the flesh. It is as. if he had said, I would not, for 
that honour I ever look for from yourselves, that you should so attribute 


the comfort you shall have, or the revealing of truth to you (from which he 
is called ' the Spirit of truth'), so unto me or my Father alone, as to neglect 
or omit to give him his peculiar honour in it ; for it properly, and of due, 
belongs to him. You are and shall be beholden to me and my Father, for 
the sending of him ; but you are to be especially beholden to himself, for 
that work he doth in you, being sent by us. Be sure therefore to take 
notice of him and his person, distinct both from me and my Father. For 
it is ' an£jytier Comforter' (says he, ver. 16) ' which is the Holy Ghost,' 
(ver. 26), and therefore you ought as distinctly to glorify him as you would 
do us. 

Obs. 2. The second observation is concerning the particular works which 
Christ says are his, and for which we are to honour him. And an enumera- 
tion of his works being the scope of this my discourse, we may find divers 
particulars that are the most eminent of them, named and specified in these 
chapters to our hand, which will sufficiently serve for me to take the men- 
tion of them, for an example to me to proceed to specify other works that 
are attributed to him elsewhere. This I premise, because I would not be 
obliged to fetch each of them which I shall after name out of these chapters, 
and so to confine myself thereto. 

The particular eminent work indeed on which he insists in these chapters, 
is, that of being a Comforter to them ; for the occasion of these sermons 
was to relieve and pacify the apostles' minds, against his own leaving them, 
as they thought, desolate. But therewith he further brings in other works 
of his besides, and in effect that he should do all, that they had need of 
his help in. He insinuates to them how much already themselves had been 
obliged unto him for his working hitherto in them, which he calls them to 
look back upon, for they had received them already in regenerating, con- 
verting and calling them out from the world (which was his first and great 
work in them), and so distinguished them from the world. Thus chap, 
xiv. 16, 17, ' The Comforter, the Spirit of truth ; whom the world cannot 
receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him ;' that is, knows 
him not by experience of any saving work upon them, and so they cannot 
receive him as a comforter, because it is necessary they first receive him as 
a converter. ' But ye know him,' and have found him to have begotten 
you again ; ' for he dwglleth in you,' hath come and taken possession of 
you, and acted hitherto in you all that spiritual good that hath been found 
in you, and thereby hath taken everlasting possession of you, as it follows : 
• and shall be in you,' to perfect all that is wanting, and that for ever, as 
verse 16.~ 

A second work there specified is, that he should be to them a ' Spirit of 
truth,' ' to lead them into all truth,' which, as a sacred deposition, he was 
by them, as apostles, to leave unto the rest of the world ; chap. xiv. 26, 
1 He shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, 
whatsoever I have said unto you.' And not only so, but shall suggest new 
to you, chap. xvi. 12, 13, ' I have many things to say unto you, but ye 
cannot bear them now. Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he 
shall not speak of himself ; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak.' 

A third_work instanced in is, that ' He will shew you things to come ;' 
and this to that end, that ye may teach and write them to others, chap. 
xv. 26, 27. He shall bear witness of me, and you shall bear witness of me. 

A fourth work specified is, to -sanctify them against sin and corruption. 
This work is imported in his name, * the Holy Spirit,' as the other, of lead- 
ing them into all truth, is signified by that other title, ' the Spirit of truth „•' 

Chap. II.] in our salvation. 7 

for he is termed the Holy Spirit, because he sanctifies : Rom. xv. 16, ' Being 
sanctified by the Holy Ghost.' 

Fifthly, He shall be a Comforter to you, against all sorrows, chap. xiv. 
16, 17, 18. 

Sixthly, He shall assist and direct you in all your prayer s, and be the 
inditer of them for you ; and so effectually as to obtain what you shall ask, 
chap. xvi. 23, ' Verily, verily, whatsoever ye shall ask the Father in my 
name, he will give it you ; hitherto have you asked nothing in my name ;' 
for the Holy Ghost was not as yet given, as he in these chapters promiseth 
he should be. ' But in that day,' namely, when the Holy Ghost is come, 
• ye shall ask in my name,' then (as in chap. xiv. 20). ' In that day,' — 
namely, when the Comforter is come, that word in that day refers there- 
unto — ' ye shall know that I am in my Father, and you in me.' These 
works he specifies as to themselves. 

But withal, seventhly, he mentions his works upon the world, by their 
ministry, unto whom they were sent. He shall be a converter and con- 
vincer of the world ; that is, the glory of the conversion of the Gentiles is 
reserved for him, by your ministry : chap. xvi. verses 8, 9, ' When he is 
come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judg- 
ment : of sin, because they believe not on me,' &c. To which three 
enumerations the total of the work of conversion is reduced, of which 

Obs. 3. Thirdly, observe what Christ says, I myself must be gone (saith 
he) and disappear, to the end it may appear that all this whole work is I 
his, not mine : ver. 7, ' If I go not away, the Comforter will not come.' He t&^<^ 
will not do these works while I am here, and I have committed all to him. qj^^ 
That look, as my Father hath visibly ' committed all judgment unto me,' 
(John v. 22, 23, ' For the Father judgeth no man, but hath committed all 
judgment unto the Son ; that all men should honour the Son, even as they 
honour the Father '), so here : I and my Father will send him, having com- 
mitted all these things to him, that all men might honour the Holy Ghost, 
even as they honour the Father and the Son. Even as in like manner the i*-*^ 
reason why the Spirit was not sent, whilst Christ was on earth, was to 
shew that not the Father alone sent him, but that he came from Christ, as 
well as from the Father. And so Christ, he went to heaven to shew that 
both Father and Son would send the Holy Ghost from thence, Acts ii. 32, 
33, ' This Jesus hath God raised up, whereof we all are witnesses. There- 
fore being by the right hand of God exalted, and having received of the 
Father the promise of the Holy Ghost, he hath shed forth this which you 
see and hear.' Thus wary and careful are every of the persons to provide 
for the honour of each other in our hearts. And as careful should we be 
to give it to them accordingly. 


Some further observations touching the coming of the Holy Ghost. — That he 
had a signal coming designed to him for his glory at the feast of Pentecost, 
as Christ had a visible coming in the flesh. — The great change made in the 
world thereby. 

Add to these observations out of those chapters, these also that follow, 
concerning this his coming promised in those chapters, but observed out of 
other scriptures. 


;"I. That a signal coming should be appointed to him, to the performance 
of his work, as well as unto Christ to perform his. This coming of his you 
have inculcated again and again in these chapters, in these words, ' When 
he is come,' and the like. Which imported that, although he was given to 
work regeneration in men afore, even under the Old Testament (as Neh. 
ix. 20, ' He gave them his good Spirit,' and many other places, shew), that 
yet to let all the world of believers take notice his coming, and his work, 
he must have a coming in state, in a solemn and visible manner, accom- 
panied with visible effects, as well as Christ had, and whereof all the Jews 
should be, and were witnesses (thus Acts, chaps, ii. iv.), and it was also 
apparent throughout the primitive times, in outward signs and miracles, 
extraordinary gifts and conversions. And as Christ, though he was under 
the Old Testament present with that church and with the fathers — Acts vii. 
37, 38, ' This is he that was in the church in the wilderness, with the 
angel which spake to Moses in the mount Sinai, and with our fathers' — yet 
had a visible coming in flesh to manifest his person ; that it was he who 
had done all those works then, and came now to work more, and far greater 

^ * .) works : so there was a visible coming of the Holy Ghost, both in the appear- 
ance of him as a dove,, descending on Christ at first, and afterwards in the 

\. ^-/resemblance of cloven tongues. 

And there was not a personal union of the Holy Ghost with that dove 
and those tongues, as in Christ's manifestation in the flesh there was 
between the eternal Son of God and human nature. Yet these appearances 
of the Holy Ghost are to be understood by us as visible outward representa- 
tions and discoveries of him to be the third person ; and that it had been 
he who was the author of all the whole work of application in the saints 
then under the Old Testament ; as well as now of regeneration and sancti- 
fication, and of comforting ; and that' he had been indwelling in all saints 
afore this his coming, as well as after. 

And this his coming was as clearly prophesied of, and solemn promise 
made thereof, under the Old Testament, as there was of Christ's coming in 
the flesh. Which did so much heighten and raise up the expectations of 
all believers then about him ; as that upon which, and whereby, so great 
a change should be made in the church and world in the last days. 
This the apostle Peter commemorates and applies upon the Spirit's visible 
coming upon himself and the rest of his fellows : Acts ii. 10-18, ' This is 
that which was spoken by the prophet Joel ; It shall come to pass in the 
last days, saith God, I will pour out my Spirit upon all flesh : and your 
sons and you*- daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see 
visions, and your old men shall dream dreams : and on my servants and 
on my handmaidens I will pour out in those days of my Spirit ; and they 
shall prophesy ;' and so on. Yea, this coming of the Spirit I may farther 
call the great promise of the New Testament. For as Christ's coming was 
the great promise of the Old Testament, so the sending of the Spirit is 
entitled the 'promise of the Father' in the New : Luke xxiv. 49, ' And behold 
I send the promise of my Father upon you.' And he is so styled, not only 
in that he had been promised in the Old Testament by the prophets (as in 
that of Joel ii. 28, 29, now cited), and in multitude of other prophecies of 
old ; but because that Christ himself did now de novo (as it were) pro- 
mulge it as his promise, and the Father's ; and that upon this authority, 
that this Spirit proceeded from him, as well as from the Father, and that 
he was first to receive him from* us, and then shed him forth on us, Acts 

* Qu. 'for - ?— Ed. 

Chap. II. J in our salvation. 9 

ii. 33, that so it might be made good, that • all the promises are yea and 
amen in him ;' seeing this promise of the Spirit is given upon Christ's 
account, as he is the Son (according to that, ' God hath Bent forth the Spirit 
of his Son into your hearts,' Gal. iii. 13, 14 compared), and also because 
now under the New Testament this promise was to be fulfilled in such a 
manner and measure as was never under the Old ; and so it becomes a pro- 
mise proper to the New, that next great promise, which was to succeed 
that of Christ himself, the promise of promises ; the sole great promise 
now left to be given. God the Father had but two grand gifts to bestow ; 
and when once they should be given out of him, he had left them nothing 
that was great (comparatively) to give, for they contained all good in them ; 
and these two gifts were his Son, who was his promise in the Old Testa- 
ment, and his Spirit, the promise of the New. And the Father doth 
honour himself to us by this title, that he is the promiser and giver of the 
Spirit ; and Christ himself, now when he is come, takes the honour too of 
that, to make the sending of the Spirit his promise also, in saying, ' Behold 
I send him :' Luke xxiv. 49, and John xiv. 26, ' Whom my Father will 
send in my name.' And it is evident that our Saviour, in calling him ' the 
promise of the Father,' which was spoken by him after his resurrection, 
Luke xxiv. 49, doth refer to his own words and sermons uttered afore his 
resurrection, in 14th, 15th, and 16th chapters of John, rather than to the 
prophets primarily in his intention : Acts i. 4, ' Wait for the promise of 
the Father, which ye have heard of me.' 

Again, Christ had John the Baptist, who ' began the gospel,' to foretell 
his manifestation in the flesh, and to prepare the way for this Lord. And 
besides him, his angels did it. But the Holy Ghost hath Christ himself to 
foretell his coming upon flesh : and that to prepare the hearts of men for 
him whenever he should come. 

And, lastly, on purpose to honour his visible coming, he had answerably an 
extraordinary work left to him, upon that his visible coming : the conversion 
of the whole Gentile world ; and the raising and building of the churches of 
the New Testament was reserved of his glory. To believe in the Holy Ghost, 
and the holy catholic church, you know how near they stand together in 
the Creed. His visible coming at Pentecost was the visible consecration 
and dedication of that great temple, the mystical body of Christ, to be 
reared under the gospel (the several members of which body are called 
' temples of the Holy Ghost/* 1 Cor. iii. 16), as that appearance at Christ's 
baptism was the consecration of the head. Of this work of the Spirit, that 
of the psalmist, though spoken literally of the first creation, may yet be 
used in allusion, and is mystically applied by some of the fathers there- 
unto : Ps. civ. 30, ' Thou sendest forth thy Spirit, thej' are created ; thou f\jL* 
renewest the face of the earth.' The whole earth was decked and adorned 
with a new array, when the Spirit of God moved upon that chaos ; and the 
whole face of the world was in that age of the gospel's promulgation no 
other than a chaos, void, and without all form ; ' all nations had walked 
in their own ways :' but the Spirit was sent forth, and lo this barren wil- 
derness became a fruitful field all the world over. 

The feast of Pentecost was under the old law the feast of the first fruits, 
Lev. xxiii. 10. Thus it was in the type, and the apostles on that day re- 
ceived for the church of the New Testament ' the first fruits of the Spirit,' 
Rom. viii. 23. And the sickle was then first put in, in the conversion of 
the three thousand out of all nations (whether Jews or Gentiles, or mixed 
* Ye are the temples of the Holy Ghost. 


with both) ; so to begin that great harvest, whereof these were the first 
fruits or seeds which consecrated the rest (as the first fruits did under the 
law) in after ages to come, as Christ told them that their fruit should re- 
main, John xv. 16. And this coming of the Holy Ghost then, and converting 
such as were inhabitants out of all nations, was by Christ designed to be 
for the handsel of the conversion of all nations : Actsi. 8, ' Ye shall receive 
power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you ; and ye shall be wit- 
nesses unto me, both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea, and in Samaria, and 
unto the uttermost parts of the earth ;' charging them to stay at Jerusalem, 
and not to stir one foot out from thence, but ' wait first for the promise of 
the Father,' ver. 4. For it would have been a vain attempt to have endea- 
voured to convert the world until the Holy Ghost had come upon them ; 
and hence it was that this his visible coming was reckoned by the chief 
apostle the first era, the beginning of the gospel, as the beginning of the 
creation described by Moses is of the world : Acts xi. 15, ' The Holy Ghost 
fell upon them Gentiles, as upon us at the beginning,' which refers to that 
at Pentecost. And this yet further answers the type, for the first giving 
of the law by Moses was on that day, the day of Pentecost ; and so this 
coming of the Spirit that day was justly reckoned the beginning of the 
gospel, although the account of the Christian world begins with the nativity 
of Christ. But the full revelation of the gospel and the mysteries thereof, 
and the conversion of the world of the Gentiles, this was ordained for the 
Spirit's glory, and reserved for his coming, John xvi. ; which conversion of 
the world is magnified as an after-sacrifice, as the saints' sufferings after 
Christ are styled the after- sufferings of Christ, Col. i., presented unto God 
by the Holy Ghost ; Christ offered up himself as that alone meritorious 
sacrifice, but this of the Gentiles did come after, a sacrifice sanctified by 
the Holy Ghost. The grace vouchsafed to the apostle for his poor instru- 
mentalness therein, he owns, whilst he yet gives the glory of it to the Holy 
Ghost; which you may find in Rom. xv. 15, 1G, ' To me this grace was 
given, that I should be the minister of Jesus Christ to the Gentiles, 
ministering the gospel of God, that the offering up of the Gentiles might 
be acceptable, being sanctified by the Holy Ghost.' The Gentiles, you 
know, before had ever been esteemed unclean, and upon that account 
unmeet to be an ofiering unto God, as the law shews ; which that vision of 
all sorts of unclean beasts made to Peter in the sheet (Acts x.), and the 
comment thereupon which he makes that the Gentiles were meant, doth 
shew. But these were all purified by the Holy Ghost's converting of them, 
that thereby all difference was taken away ; and so much as those that were 
not to be conversed with by a Jew, were now offered up as a sacrifice to 
God. Thus Acts xv. 8, 9, ' God, which knoweth the hearts, bare them 
witness, giving them the Holy Ghost, even as he did us ; and put no differ- 
ence between us and them, purifying their hearts by faith.' 
Thus much for some general observations premised. 


Of the world of the Holy Ghost upon Christ our Saviour. 

The summing up of the works of the Holy Spirit, and laying them alto- 
gether in one heap, that we find scattered up and down in the Scriptures, 
would, if we were able to recollect them all, and every particular, arise to a 

Chap. III.] in our salvation. 11 

very great bulk. I shall reduce them which I have gleaned as most eminent 
unto these three heads, 

I. What work and use he is, and was of, to Christ our head. 

II. What to the church, taken collectively. 

III. What to every saint. And in the filling up of these, I shall not 
mention anything that may by consequence be argued his, but what the 
Scriptures do express ly attrib ute to him. 

I. I shall first describe his operations upon Christ our head. 

1. It was the Holy Ghost that formed his human nature in the womb : 
Mat. i. 18, it is said that Mary ' was found with child of the Holy Ghost' ; 
and ver. 20, ' That which is conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost.' So 
then he made the man Jesus, both body and soul. 

2. Some divines do further ascribe unto this Spirit the special honour 
of tying that marriage knot, or union, between the Son of God and that 
man Jesus, whom the Holy Ghost formed in the virgin's womb. Now if 
their meaning be that he, in common with the Father and the Son, did join in 
that great action, I grant it, according to the measure of that general rule, 
that opera ad extra sunt indivisa, all works outward, or that are wrought 
not within the Godhead itself (which admit some exception), all the three 
persons had a joint common hand in. But that which is my proper subject, 
is, what special honour in those works doth by way of eminency belong to 
the Holy Ghost in any of these works. And so considered, I have not 
found a ground why to attribute the personal union more particularly to 
the Holy Ghost ; but rather (according unto what occurs to my observation 
in the Scriptures, and to consonant reason), that action is more peculiarly 
to be attributed to the Son himself, as second person, who took up into one 
person with himself that human nature. The Father indeed sent the Son 
into the world, to take flesh ; and the Holy Ghost formed that flesh he 
assumed ; but it was the Son's special act to take it up into himself, and to 
assume it. So the apostle tells us, Heb. ii. 16, ' He took on him* the seed 
of Abraham ;' or he took to himself, assumpsit ad, which word denotes the 
very act of that union. And it was his own single act, and in reason it 
must have been so ; for it was an act of a person knowing, and actually in- 
telligent in what he did, when it was done by him. And that thing he did 
was a taking to himself a foreign nature, to be one person with himself; as 
a person affording his own subsistence unto that nature, to be a person 
with himself. Himself must communicate that personality, and none other 
for him, for it is properly his own to bestow ; unto which that in chap. x. 
accords, ' When he comes into the world, he says, A body hast thou pre- 
pared me,' speaking to his Father, who prepared that body by the Holy 
Ghost ; and it was his Father's ordination he should take it ; but he, as a 
person existing afore he took it, as coming into the world by assuming it, says, 
' Lo, I come to do thy will, God,' as ver. 7 it is more expressly added. 

3. It was the Holy Ghost had the honour of the consecratio n of him to 
be the Christ, and that by anointing him ' without' or * above measure,' as 
John the Baptist witnessed, John iii. 34. It was with power and all grace 
that he was anointed : Isa. xi. 2, ' The Spirit of the Lord shall rest upon 
him, and the Spirit of wisdom and understanding, the Spirit of counse 
and might, the Spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the Lord.' What is 
Messiah, or Xcusrbg, but the Most Holy One anointed ? Dan. ix. Now, with 


what oil was Jesus anointed, and so made Christ ? Acts x. 38, ' God 
anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Ghost.' The Holy Ghost is that 
oil he is anointed with above his fellows ; and he hath his name of Christ, 
which is the chief name of his person, from the Holy Ghost, as he hath 
that of Jesus for saving us, which is his work. Christ, the anointed, is 
the name that speaks all his offices. Kings, priests, and prophets, who 
were only his shadows, were anointed. And it is made the true, proper 
sign and token of his person's being the Son of God, that the Holy Ghost 
came visibly on him, and abode upon him : John i. 32-34, ' And John 
bare record, saying, I saw the Spirit descending from heaven like a dove, 
and it abode upon him. And I knew him not : but he that sent me to 
baptize with water, the same said unto me, Upon whom thou shalt see the 
Spirit descending, and remaining on him, the same is he which baptizeth 
with the Holy Ghost. And I saw, and bare record, that this is the Son of 
God ; ' with which compare John vii. 38, 39, ' He that believeth on me, 
as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water. 
(But this spake he of the Spirit, which they that believe on him should 
receive : for the Holy Ghost was not yet given ; because that Jesus was 
not yet glorified);' whereupon, ver. 40, 41, 'Many of the people, when 
they heard that saying, Of a truth, said they, this is that Prophet; others, 
This is the Christ.' This descending visibly of the Spirit (which was done 
first to him), was the highest evidence of these that could be, excepting 
only that of the Father: ' This is my beloved Son.' The Baptist makes 
these his highest characters, that it was he baptized with the Holy Ghost 
as with fire ; and that he received the Spirit without measure, though he 
was personally full of grace and truth himself, as he was the Son of God. 

4. It was the Holy Ghost anointed him to all his offices , as first to be a 
< proph et ar> d preacher of the gospel, which was first spoken by the Lord, 

Hob. ii. Thus, Luke iv. 1R (and some think it was his first text), ' The 
Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath sent me to heal the broken- 
hearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering sight to the 
blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised.' Whether you take the 
words ou hi%iv antecedently or consequently, either that became by God he 
was designed to be a preacher, therefore the Spirit was on him ; or that 
because the Spirit was on him, he therefore was fitted to be a preacher, it 
comes all to one as to my purpose. The Spirit was he that made him a 
'preacher of the gospel, to utter things which man never did, and to speak 
in such a manner as man never did. And this is evident by the context in 
that Luke iv., for it was his first sermon after his baptism, when the Holy 
Ghost had anew fallen on him, and he had returned ' full of the Holy Ghost,' 
as Luke iv. 1; and again in ver. 14 he returned (or went) 'full of the Holy 
Ghost ' into Galilee, his ordinary standing diocese for his ordinary preach- 
ing, as the evangelists shew. 

5. The Holy Ghost anointed him with power to do all his miracles, and 
all the good he did; so in Acts x. 38, 'He was anointed with the Holy 
Ghost and with power : going about doing good, and healing all that were 
oppressed of the devil ; ' whom it is expressly said he cast out ' by the 
Spirit,' Mat. xii. 28. 

6. When Christ was dead, who was it raised him up from the grave ? 
Which work was so great a work, as God himself accounts it as a new 
begetting, or making him anew, and as it were a second conception of 
him, a new edition of his Son Christ : Acts xiii. 33, ' He raised up Jesus 
again ; as it is written in the second Psalm, Thou art my Son, this day 




have I begotten thee.' God rejoiceth, as having but then recovered and 
found his Son, that was as it were lost hi the likeness of sinful flesh. 
Now, who was the immediate cause of this new advancement, whereby he 

was born into the other world? The Holy Cihost: Horn. viii. 11, 'But if 
the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, he that, 
raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken 3'our mortal bodies, by 
his Spirit that dwelleth in you.' God by his Spirit raiseth up both Christ 
and us. 

7. When he ascended, who tilled him with that glory ? The Holy Ghost : 
Ps. xlv., he was ' anointed with the oil of gladness above his fellows;' which 
oil, Acts x. 38, is said to be the Holy Ghost. 

8. It was the Holy Ghost that solemnly anointed him as king in heaven : 
Acts ii. 33, ' Being at the right hand of God, and having received of the 
Father the promise of the Holy Ghost,' &c. Peter's inference from this 
is, ver. 36, ' Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly, that 
God hath made that same Jesus, whom ye have crucified, both Lord and 

9. It was and is the Holy Ghost that proclaims him Christ in all men's 
hearts. He sets the crown upon him there also, as well as in heaven, in 
so much that no man could ever come to acknowledge him the Christ but 
from the Spirit : 1 Cor. xii. 3, ' No man can say Jesus is the Lord, but 
by the Holy Ghost.' So as whatever right he had in his person, or by his 
Father's designation (of which in Acts ii. 36, Rom. xiv. 9), yet it is the 
Spirit that publicly proclaimed him such, brought him in all his subjects ; 
or, to use Christ's own words, ' He it is that glorifies me, shewing it to 
them,' John xvi. 14. All this he hath done to and for Christ our head. 


His operations upon the church, the body of Christ ; and that first as col- 
lectively taken, the whole thereof. 

II. Let us now consider the operations of the Holy Ghost in and upon 
the church, collectively taken, as the body of Christ. 

1. He was the first founder of the church of the New Testament. The 
apostle, writing to the Ephesians, who (as you know) had formerly gloried 
of their temple of Diana as one of the seven wonders of the Gentile world, 
sets before them, chap, ii., an infinitely far greater and more glorious 
temple, whereof they themselves, he tells them, were a part, even the 
church universal of the New Testament, consisting of Jew and Gentile : 
Eph. ii. 21, 'A building fitly framed together, that groweth up into an 
holy temple in the Lord.' But then, who is the builder and framer of 
this fabric, age after age, till all is perfect ? And through whom also is it 
that this temple, when built, is consecrated unto God for a mansion-house 
or habitation, who hath the whole world to dwell in ? The 22d verse 
shews both, ' In whom ' (namely, Christ) ' ye ' (Ephesians) ' are also 
builcled up together for an habitation of God through the Spirit ; ' which 
in the coherence with the former, is as if he had said, He that made you, 
the Ephesians, a church (which was as a particular member of that uni- 
versal body), as ' members in particular,' 1 Cor. xii. 27, the same Spirit 
was the builder of that great cathedral in which are comprehended all par- 
ticular churches as smaller oratories ; so as he is the great founder of all, 


both in the whole, yea, of every member that worships therein. Thus, in 
ver. 18, ' Through him' (namely Christ) 'we have both' (Jew and Gen- 
tile) ' access to God ' (but) ' through the Spirit.' Yea, he is the soul of 
this one body ; Eph. iv. 4, • There is one body and one Spirit.' Christ 
bears the relation of head to this body ; but who is the universal soul, 
which is in all, and every part of it ? It is the Holy Ghost ; and oh ! how 
glorious a church and body shall Christ have, when all are met and set to- 
gether, and filled full of this Spirit at the latter day ! Eph. v. 27. At that 
day it is he will ' present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, 
or wrinkle, or any such thing.' Thus spake the husband, the head, of this 
spouse. But who is the soul that gives this beauty, that formed this symme- 
try of all the members, and adds life to all ? The Holy Ghost. And now, 
let us think what a mighty and vast work this of forming and building the 
universal church is, whereof this Holy Spirit is the former and effecter. 
There was a perfect pattern and platform of the whole and every member 
thereof in God's breast, an idea also in Christ's (as appears by the last- 
cited Eph. v.) which this Spirit will bring in the end the whole unto, and 
frame each living stone in the building to bear a due, suitable, and comely 
proportion in the whole, and each to other. And this is, and hath been 
providentially a- doing and a-framing in every part thereof, in all and every age, 
and hath been wrought from the beginning of the world, in the several parcels 
apart, even as each piece of tapestry in hangings use to be wrought in little 
bits and small parcels, which, when finished, are then at last set together. 
And this Spirit, who is the dedolator, the architectonical master-workman, 
hath in his eye every degree of grace he works in every of these members' 
hearts who is a stone in this building, according to the pattern which the 
Father and Christ have in their idea and model, of every particular, as also 
of the whole, and exactly frames each and the whole unto their mind, and 
misseth not the least of the set proportion in the pattern, which, in so long, 
so various, and multifarious a work to do (as this therefore must be sup- 
posed), what infinite wisdom and power doth it require, and argues him to 
be God, that is in God, as the spirit of a man within him, and ' searcheth 
the deep things of God.' 

2. All the means of the church's edification (as the word, ministry, and 
all gospel ordinances) all which are the goods and chattels, the household- 
stuff of the church universal ('Paul and Apollos are theirs'), these are all of 
him, and blessed by him. He wrote the Scriptures, 2 Peter i. 21, gave 
the prophecies, 1 Peter i. 11, revealed the gospel, Eph. iii. 5, in such a 
manner and measure, and with such an enlargement as never before, to the 
sons of men. 

The care of all that great affair of the ministry, and the work thereof, is 
incumbent on him, lies on his hands to manage. In the New Testament 
we find him once immediately speaking in his own person, and taking on 
him as a person (as the Father had done afore when he said, ' This is my 
well-beloved Son ') ; and the occasion was particular about the execution of 
this work of the ministry, it is in Acts xiii. 2, ' The Holy Ghost said, Sepa- 
rate me Barnabas and Saul for the work whereunto I have called them.' 
In which effort of his, he speaks as one entered upon an office or work 
committed to him, and betrusted with him. And it is as if he had said, 
this is my work proper to me, I am the immediate governor and adminis- 
trator herein ; for all that any way concerns the edification of the church 
is committed to my management and care. And he says he had designed 
Paul and Barnabas to one part, as Peter and John to another, Gal. ii., 

Chap. IV.] in our salvation. 15 

yea, all their {^ifts are his, in him, and he as a person that is the sovereign 
thereof, ' distributes them as ho will,' 1 Cor. xii. 4, 7. Ho makes minis- 
ters, John xx. 22. And that power to declare that sins are forgiven, and 
so set free men's consciences, is from their having received the Holy Ghost 
first, ' Christ breathed on them, and said, Receive ye the Holy Ghost ; ' 
and then adds, ' Whose sins ye remit, aro remitted.' And as he makes 
ministers, so he sends out ministers, Acts xiii. 4 ; and in vain it is for 
them to go until he comes upon them. The apostles are therefore com- 
manded to stay going forth into the world till they should have received 
the Holy Ghost, Acts i. 8. He appoints the place and people any of them 
should go unto, and forbids and hinders where they should not be usefully 
employed. He gives them orders : he bids Philip go to the eunuch, 
Acts viii. 29 ; and Acts xi. 12, he sends Peter to Cornelius ; and on 
the other side, he forbids to preach to such or such. Paul and Timothy 
were forbidden of the Holy Ghost to preach in Asia, Acts xvi. 6 ; and they 
again 'essayed to go into Bithynia: but the Spirit suffered them not,' ver. 7. 
And when they preach, it is he prompts them with their sermons, Mark 
xiii. 11. The apostles ' spake as the Spirit gave them utterance,' and 
when they spake, they spake apophthegms, as the word is, weighty sayings : 
1 Cor. ii. 13, ' Which things we speak, not in the words which man's wis- 
dom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth ; comparing spiritual 
things with spiritual ; ' that is, suiting expressions to the gravity and 
weight of the things delivered. He fires' tneir tongues and hearts, that 
they should not speak mere empty and powerless words, nor shoot powder, 
but fiery bullets, such as have warmth and life in them. And when they 
preach, he makes their sermons to be the ministration of the Spirit, to 
convey himself unto their hearts, and to make the gospel ' the power of 
God unto salvation.' All the power of sermons is from the Holy Ghost : 
1 Thes. i. 5, ' Our gospel was not in word only, but in power, and in the 
Holy Ghost ; ' 1 Peter i. 11, 12, the gospel is said to have been preached 
1 with the Holy Ghost sent down from heaven,' who waiteth and watcheth 
when ye come to sermons, and at the speaking such a word as will do your 
hearts good, he falls upon you : Acts x. 44, ' Whilst they were speaking 
these words, the Holy Ghost fell on them.' I might shew the same in all 
the ordinances, but of them after. 

For a conclusion. It may be truly said (as it hath been by some of the 
ancients) that as Christ was the fulfiller of the law, and the end of the, 
law (Ptom. x.), so that the Spirit is the complement, the fulfiller, and maker 
good of all the gospel, * otherwise all that Christ did would have profited 
us nothing, if the Holy Ghost did not come into our hearts and bring all 
home to us. Christ made his will by his death, Heb. ix ; but the Spirit 
is his administrator. Christ's blood and purchase gave us, by his redeem- 
ing us, jus ad rem ; but the Holy Ghost, by applying it, only jus in re; he 
gives us possession, livery, and seisin. Himself is the Arrha : the earnest 
and the investiture of all is by him. The promises had been but as blanks 
else to us ; but it is the Holy Ghost is the sealer of us by them, the verifier 
of them, 2 Cor. i. 20, 22. Christ also came, and delivered his commands 
to his apostles, to teach his church to do them, as in Mat. xxviii. 20 ; but 
withal it is expressly said of him, and that after his being risen again, that 
he gave those his commands to them by the Holy Ghost, Acts i. 2. And 
then again, those great truths he uttered only by word of mouth ; but 
it was the Holy Ghost which recovered them when they were almost lost, 
* Christus legis, Spiritus evangelii complementum. — Tertul. 



and in a manner clean gone out of the apostles' weak and shallow memories 
and understandings. And he it was that added a thousand more truths to 
them, which Christ never uttered ; to whom therefore Christ refers them : 
John xvi. 12, 13, ' I have yet many things to say unto you, but ye cannot 
bear them now. Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will 
guide you into all truth ; for he shall not speak of himself ; but whatsoever 
he shall hear, that shall he speak.' 

Only by the way, let ministers and Christians take notice what is the 
glory of the ministry, even the Holy Ghost. Thus Paul himself, 1 Cor. 
ii. 4, ' My speech and my preaching was not with enticing words of man's 
wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power.' The phrase, 2 Cor. 
iii. 6, is, ' He hath made us able ministers of the Spirit.' The words in 
that text are indeed 'ministers of the New Testament,' but it follows in the 
same verse, ' not of the letter, but of the Spirit.' And this New Testament, 
or the gospel, says the apostle, ver. 3, is ministered by us ' with the Spirit 
of the living God.' Our abilities lie in our being made more or less instru- 
ments, by whom the Holy Ghost is pleased to communicate himself. Acts 
xi. 24 it is said, Barnabas was ' a good man, and full of the Holy Ghost,' 
in his own person ; ' and much people was added to the Lord.' A 
preacher, in the primitive language, is termed, ' He that ministereth the 
Spirit,' Gal. iii. 2, 5. And therefore value ministries by this ; and let 
ministers seek to be filled with the Holy Spirit. It is still prefaced of their 
preaching, such or such an one was filled with the Holy Ghost, and spake, 
as Acts iv. 8, and Acts ii. 3, 4. 


His operations in every part and member of the church and body of Christ. 

III. It is next to be considered what the Holy Ghost doth in every part 
and member of this body of Christ, the church ; what he doth for every 
particular saint. For look, what he is to, and in the church universal, that 
he is first unto, and in, every saint in particular ; for it is the particular 
individual saint that makes up the church universal ; even as reason is first 
and principally in every particular and individual man ; and by means 
thereof it is that reason is found, and so abounds in a body or assembly of 
men. They meeting together, every one severally brings a portion of it with 
him thereunto ; so as the main of his work lies and consists in what he 
doth in and to every member. And when he falls upon assemblies of 
saints as met, yet it is so as he falls on the whole, by visiting the particular 
souls so assembled, and out of respect unto each single soul ; as when the 
rain falls upon a field of corn, it falls upon the whole for every particular 
blade's sake, watering every stalk at its root, and so all grow up together. 
Hence therefore, Acts ii., where the fulfilling of those promises made in the 
14th and 15th chapters of John, were in the first fruits of them accom- 
plished, it is expressly indigitated that ' the Spirit sat upon .(ffifih of them :' 
ver. 3, ' And they were all ' (that is, every one of them) 'lined with the 
IHoly Ghost ;' as organ pipes use to be with the common blast of the bellows 
/that breathes wind into them, though by the difference of the pipes there 
•lis a differing sound. And thus the Holy Ghost doth, as one Spirit, inform 
and inspire the whole body of Christ, as the soul doth the whole body of a 
man. Eph. iv. 4, ' There is one body, and one Spirit,' and the Spirit is 

Chap. V.J in our salvation. 17 

the same in every member. Now consider with yourselves, if there were 
but one common soul (as some have feigned to be in the system of the world) 
which acted, and enlivened every man and thing in the world, you would 
acknowledge that it must be a mighty, vast, and burthensome work which 
is incumbent upon that great soul (whatever it were), and which it under- 
goes at every moment. But thus it is in reality with this great Spirit, the 
soul of the whole church, who both informs and enliveneth the whole, and 
every member of it. 

What therefore is next to be considered, is the activity of this Holy Spirit 
upon us, and in working in us. 

1. First, in general ; he worketh no less than all that is wrought, 1 Cor. 
"Xii. 11, 'But all these worketh that one and self"- same Spirit, dividing to 
'-very man severally as he will.' As of Christ, who is the Word, it is said 
in the point of the first creation (John i. 3), that ' without him there was not 
anything made that was made ;' so of the Spirit in this new creation we 
may say, that without him there is not anything wrought in us that is 

But let us consider particularly his works. 

(1.) In regenerati on, which is his prime work in us. 

He is the author of all the principles or habits of grace, of that whole 
new creature, of that "workmanship created to good works, the spiritual 
man, which is called spirit ; that divine nature, which is the mass and lump 
of all things pertaining to life and godliness ; that which is born of the 
Spirit, John iii. 6 ; the image of Christ, which is styled • Christ formed in 
us,' Gal. iv. 19. That divine nature is the image drawn. But who is the 
immediate former, the limner ? It is the Spirit of God ; 2 Cor. iii. 18, 
' We are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the 
Spirit of the Lord.' And that place shews that not only the first draught 
of that image is of his drawing, the ground colours, but all the additional 
lines that follow after, to perfect it all along, from one end of the work to A/ ^JL«A, 
the other. For he attributes that continual change wrought after conver- 
sion, in every degree of it, ' from glory to glory,' unto this Spirit. And 
therein he so speaks of himself and these believing Corinthians, yea, all 
believers. ' We are thus changed ' all along by beholding, &c. All the 
changes into that image are' by the Spirit of the Lord. No hand hath skill 
or power to add to this work ; none able to mingle colours orient and lively 
enough but he. In the same chapter the believing Corinthians are declared 
to be ' the epistle of Christ,' so far as they were or shewed themselves 
Christians in reality. And Christ and bis graces are the perfect original 
and exemplar ; and these Corinthians, so far as they had advanced in Chris- 
tianity, were for essential parts the entire copy, which in]some degree does 
express to the life that original. And there is not a letter or tittle added 
in the copy which is not found in him, 2 Cor. iii. 3, ' For ye are manifestly 
declared to be the epistle of Christ, ministered ' (indeed says the apostle) 
' by us ' (as the pens), ' but written with the Spirit of the living God ; not 
with ink, nor in tables of stone, but in fleshly tables of the heart :' unto 
the draught of the least line of which no art or pencil of man can reach, or 
hath colours orient enough to write it. For all and every tittle, every 
stroke, is no other than an inward living disposition of heart, like unto the 
divine life and nature of Christ, the Son of the living God, and therefore 
requires the living power of the Spirit of the living God (as heris there 
styled) to concur to the creating of it; Ps. li. 10, 11, ' Create in me a clean 
heart, God, and renew a right spirit within me. Cast me not away from 




thy presence, and take not thy Holy Spirit from me.' For as he vouch- 
safes to become the ink, so he bears the part of a hand, too, of a ready 
writer. The Spirit is the finder of G od (Mat. xii. 28, compared with Luke 
xi. 20), the sole artist that guides those pens that cast this ink, as there 
also (in ver. 6) it follows : ' God hath made us able ministers of the New 
Testament ; not of the letter ' (for even that New Testament hath also letter 
to men unregenerate, and is but the dispensation of a notion), ' but of the 
Spirit,' or power. 

Let us go over the particular actings of the soul, which are as a drawing 
out of those created principles, whether at or in our first conversion or 
afterwards ; and we shall find that each and every particular thereof are 

a ttributed to this Spiri t 

[1.] Hast thou seen thy sinlful condition, and been humbled, as to hell, 
for it ? It is the Spirit's proper work, for which he was sent. Thus says 
Christ, John xvi. 8, ' When he is come he shall convince the world of sin.' 
And he says it to his apostles, when he was to send them into the world 
to convert men. And this is the first work of the three there rehearsed, 
that the Holy Spirit beg'.nneth with, in conversion, viz., a conviction of a 
stfl fe nf j j jjri p.nd rmhpiliftf. As it follows, ' of sin, because they believed not 
on me,' and consequently, of damnation, as having lived without God and 
Christ in the world ; and this work, though it may seem too low for him, 
yet he is pleased to bear a title from it, and is termed a Spirit of bondage 
to us, as causing us to see our bondage to sin, and death, and hell : Rom. 
viii. 15, ' For ye have not received the Spirit of bondage again to fear; but 
ye have received the Spirit of ad ption, whereby we cry, Abba', "Father." 
It is one and the same Spirit there spoken of, in respect of two contrary 
operations, who hath the title there of both. It is the Holy Ghost who is 
that Spirit of adoption there spoken of, whereby we (afterwards) cry, Abba, 
Father. This you may also see, Gal. iv. 6, and in the next ver. 16 of that 
Rom. viii. It is the Spirit who also ' witnesseth to us that we are the sons 
of God ;' and b v_the opposition it will follow that if the Holy Ghost betne 
Spirit of adoption spoken of, that he also was that Spirit of bondage ; inas- 
much as he doth discover to us our bondage ; even as he is termed the 
Spirit of adoption, because he testifies our sonship. And the discovery 
of this our bondage is an infinite favour. For do not the great and wise 
ones of the world go hoodwinked quick to hell in a moment, and know not 
whither they are going until they are there ? And of thyself thou couldst 
never have been thoroughly convinced of that ; for the heart is deceitful 
above measure, who can know it ? None without the light of this Spirit. 
For it is the spirituality of the law whereby he instructs men to know 
wisdom in the hidden point of their corrupt nature, as David, confessing it, 
speaks, Ps. li., 5th and Gth verses compared together, 'Behold, I was 
shapen in iniquity ; and in sin did my mother conceive me. Behold, thou 
desirest truth in the inward parts; and in the hidden part thou shalt make 
me to know wisdom.' And without the light of which law the same David 
likewise confesseth, Ps. xix. 12, ' Who can understand his errors ? cleanse 
- thou me from secret faults.' By which secret sins he understands the im- 
, mediate ebullitions of corrupt nature. And it is he that ' searcheth the 
(deep things of God,' 1 Cor. ii. 10 ; the hidden wisdom, ver. 7 ; hid in God, 
Eph. iii. 9 ; and reveals it to us, ver. 5. It is he, the same Spirit, that 
searcheth the deep deceitfulness of men's hearts, and reveals it to them, 
which David called wisdom in the hidden part. And it is thou (says he 
of God) that makest me to know it ; that is, thou by thy Spirit, who 

Chap. V.] in our salvation. 19 

knowest all things, 1 Cor. ii. 10. And this for him to vouchsafe to do for 
him, to take the same pains to do it, as ever mother or schoolmaster took 
to teach, a child from his alphabet to read, is an act of infinite grace. It 
is he that gives thee eyes to see, and an heart to understand, who holds 
the candle to thee, and points with his finger to every sin. Let us all 
consider the unpleasingness of this work, which were it not that it is neces- 
sary for his saving thee, he who is the Holy Spirit would never rake into ' 
such fonl and filthy jakes and dunghills of lusts and by-ends, unbelief and 
presumptions. This must needs be a loathsome work to him, by reason of 
the objects he is exercised in, and tedious in itself. And this is the entrance 



[2. J It is this Spirit which works iyppwtn.n/y > upon this discovery of sin, K * 
- nd turns our hearts from sin to God effectually. John the Baptist came 
vreaching ' the baptism of repentance for the remission of sins.' Now by 
what, or whose power was it, that repentance was wrought in the hearts of 
multitudes that were his hearers ? It was the Holy Spirit. ' He shall ^ !' 
come' (says the prophet) 'in the spirit and power of Elias ,' Mai. iv. 6. ^ J 
The spirit' of Elias was the Holy Ghost, resting on him (2 Eugs ii. 15), as-R, »•/*" 
he did on the Baptist : Luke i. 15, ' He shall be filled with the Holy Ghost,«r£jL k 
even from his mother's womb.' And it is spoken to signify the power that^ > U 
should accompa ny his.jminist.ry, to wo rXxeygntan ce, as it follows in the next 0" 
verse ; ' And many of the children of Israel shall he turn to the Loi'd his * 
God.' And thereupon it is, that this prophecy of Malachi's is alleged, ver.^ 7 "*^ 
17, • He shall come in the spirit and power of Elias, and turn the hearts of 
the disobedient to the wisdom of the just.' So as that which is spoken of 
Paul's ministry among the Thessalonians, 1 Thes. i. 5, that it came ' not 
in word only, but in power, and in the Holy Ghost,' might (though in a 
lower degree) be said of his. And yet the first and eminent effect of his 
ministry was seen in the working of repentance, as it is often said, in Acts 
13th and 19th chapters. It may likewise be observed, as serving to th s 
purpose, that when Christ gave that new commission to his apostles, to 
preach repentance in his name unto all nations, for the remission of sins 
(as in Luke xxiv. 47), he withal renews 'the promise of the Father,' £ ( 
which was the Holy Ghost ; ver. 49, ' Behold, I send the promise of my X 
Father upon you.' And why is that annexed to the former, as the preface 
thereto, ' And behold,'' shews, but because the giving of the Holy Ghost, 
even after Christ's ascension, was to work repentance in men's hearts by 
that their preaching ? Yea, and he command s. them (as with a caution, in 
the following words), that they should tarry in the city of Jerusalem, until 
they were endued with power from on high. Without whom, and the power 
of whom, their preaching repentance would have had no efficacy at all, to 
move men to turn unto God ; but through whose operation God gave 1 ' Israel, 
Acts v. 31, 32, yea, and the* Gentil es, repentance unto life, Acts xi. 18. js — —■+ \ 

[3.] The work of Jaith is of his operation ; and therefore he is styled - 
' T^e_Spirit of faith,' 2 Cor. iv. 13. And the same Spirit that wrought 
faith in the~Kew"Testament, is said to have done it in the Old, as that place 
shews ; 2 Cor. iv. 13, ' We having the sanae Spirit of faith,' &c. ; the same 
which David and they in the Old Testament had. It is therefore also, that 
to be full of the Holy Ghost and of faith are joined ; Acts vi. 5, ' Stephen, 
a man full of faith, and of the Holy Ghost :' also Barnabas is said to be 'a 
man full of the Holy Ghost, and of faith,' Acts xi. 24. 

Let us view some special acts of faith, and see how the working of them 
is ascribed to the Holy Ghost. 



First ; He gave thee a spiritual sight of Christ and God's free grace, which 
drew thy heart unto them. 

He gave thee ajsight of God's free grace, when thou hadst seen thy sins 
and thy undone condition, and thy heart was thrown off the hinges of thy 
former hopes on self-righteousness, and the bladders of presumptions upon 
God's mercy upon false grounds pricked and fallen ; and thou wert left 
utterly at the loss, and knewest not what to do to be saved. Who was it 
opened to thee the first ' dpor of hope ' (Hosea ii.), and gave thee the first 
ken, hint, and glimpse of grace and mercy ; and that God would abundantly 
and freely pardon thee, if thou wouldst seek him and ply thyself to him ? 
Who was it then that laid before thee that all-sufficient righteousness of 
faith ; and that did set thy heart on work to seek it ? Even the good 
Spirit, who is therefore called ' The spirit of grace and supplication,' Zech. 
xii. 10. He became a Spirit of grace, in making a discovery of that rich 
and free grace in God's heart to be inclining towards thee, and therewitli 
became the Spirit of supplication in thee, inflaming thee, as a condemned 
man for life, to seek after that grace and pardoning mercy in God. And 
from thence he led thee to the, cross of Christ, and made and set such a 
lively picture of him, as crucified before thine eyes (Gal. iii. 1), as all angels 
and men could never have pourtrayed, no more, "yea, infinitely far less, than 
they can the sun. It was he, the same Spirit of grace, that did it ; and 
so it follows, Zech. xii. 10, ' And they shall look upon him whom they 
have pierced.' Thus also, John xvi. 8, it is said, ' When he is come, he 
shall convince the world of ri ghteousnes s ' (which Christ there enumerates 
as the Spirit's second work in calling us) ; even of that all-sufficient right- 
eousness of Christ, offered up for satisfaction to the Father ; who was ' made 
sin, that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.' And when 
the word of faith sounded in thy heart and ears, thou hadst not eyes to see 
it ; therefore this ' fountain for sin and uncleanness to wash in ' must be 
1 opened ' (as it is said, Zech. xiii. 1), or men descry it not. Thou wert 
ready to perish for thirst, as Hagar was, Gen. xxi., and lifted up thy voice 
and weptest. But as God opened her eyes, and she saw a well (ver. 19) 
just by her : so did the Spirit thine, to spy out Christ and his righteousness, 
which is hid unto the world. As I heard one say on his deathbed, Oh ! 
where had I been if I had not spied out Christ ! It was this Spirit of 
grace who caused thee to look towards him, and first set thy eyes and 
heart to see him, and look on him that was pierced, as all that are saved 
should be brought to do, as they did on the brazen serpent, John iii. 
14, 15. 

c . . Secondly; When thou didst find (being come to ibis fountain) that the 

1 *<- well was deep, and thou hadst not wherewith to draw ; and while thou wert 

but looking down into it, with a longing eye after it ; but couldst not 

reach into it, to wash thyself in it ; but layest as that poor impotent man 

did at the pool, utterly without strength (as John v.) to have stepped in : 

it was then the Holy Ghost sprinkled of it upon thy heart, and caused thine 

iniquity to pass away (1 Pet. i. 2) ; ' Through sanctification of the Spirit, 

V<rv\ and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ.' The blood indeed is the blood 

"of Jesus, but the sprinkling (in that place) is attributed to the Spirit, as 

well as obedience. It was Christ shed that blood (it is therefore there called 

the blood of Jesus Christ), but it is the Spirit that sprinkleth it, and he 

sprinkleth it with both hands, on thy heart, to wash away thy spots ; and 

therefore in ver. 22 they are said to have ' purified their souls in obeying 

the truth, through the Spirit :' which is spoken of the obedience of faith 


for justification, as well as sanctification ; as the parallel words of the same 
apostle, in Acts xv. 8, 9, compared, shew: 'God giving unto them the 
Holy Ghost, even as he did to us, and put no difference between us and 
them, purifying their hearts by faith.' And in 1 Cor. vi. 11, justification V.*? ) 
as well as sanctification is attributed to the Spirit : ' But ye are washed, 
but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, 
and by the Spirit of our God.' ■ But ye are washed,' that is the general ; 
' but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified ' (two distinct benefits), 'justified 
in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God.' Both of 
these are by both Christ and the Spirit ; as justification is in the name of 
the Lord Jesus, so is sanctification too ; and by the like reason they were 
both justified ' by the Spirit of our God.' It is Jesus Christ's name alibrds 
the merit and virtue for both, but the Spirit is the applier of them and all 
other blessings. 

Thirdly ; And when thou hast been brought to close with Christ for justi- 
fication and righteousness, who was it brought thee to the Father to be 
justified by him also (' who justifies the ungodly,' Rom. iv. 5), and who 
gave thee access to him, when thou stoodest trembling, not daring to 
approach to a consuming fire, and everlasting burnings ? It is ' through 
Christ we have access ' (manuduction) ' by one Spirit unto the Father,' 
Eph. ii. 18. It, is both through Christ, and by the Spirit, who leads us, as 
well as Christ. And indeed, Christ leads us to the Father (as it were) w**u '■ 
one hand, and the Holy Ghost by the other. Yea, it was this Spirit that ' 
taught thee to call God Father (Rom. viii. 15, Gal. iv. 6), and therewith 
to seek adoption from him. \\>$ > ^h^^SL-Cvkl a 

Fourthly; When thou art once justified by faith, and hast that righteous- . 
ness imputed to thee, who is it hath hitherto kept, and continues to keej/^^t^ 
thine heart fixedly to wait for, and hold to that righteousness alone for thy 
salvation ? And who is it withholds thee from betaking thyself to any 
other for justification ? Who settles thy hopes solely on it ? It is even 
this Spirit : Gal. v. 5, ' For we through the Spirit wait for the hope of 
ryghJeojiasness_by_faith.' Justification by faith (as we know) is the eminent 
subject of that epistle ; and these words come in in the midst of many other 
lesser additional persuasives, which he useth last, after the doctrinal argu- 
ments in the former chapters, tending all to this, that they should stand fast 
in that liberty which ver. 1 of this chapter begins with, and which the 
righteousness of Christ endows us with ; and that they should renounce that 
of works in the point of justification. 

We, says he, that is, the generality of believers, Jew and Gentile, of weak 
and strong faith, we all do steer this way ; and therefore you that turn aside 
to the works of the law for your justification do sever yourselves from the 
faith common to the church. With which accords that of the apostle Peter, 
2 Peter i. 1, 'To them that have obtained like precious faith with us ' 
(apostles, namely), 'through the righteousness' (Ik dr/.ouu)Guvr)) ' of God and 
our Saviour Jesus Christ.' This was the true and common faith of 
apostles, and all in those times. 

Do wait (says he), that is, we not only did rely upon that righteousness 
wholly for our first justification (as the papists distinguish), being necessi- 
tated unto that alone then, because as then we had no other works to rely 
upon, but of nature and unregeneracy (which upon conversion are discovered 
to be dead works), but ever since we abide by it, and depend upon that 
alone for our justification afterward, and that now, when we have other 
manner of works of true holiness and sincerity renewed in us, and which 


increase more and more in us ; which (if any works could or might) would 
entice us over to join them with Christ, as a ground of our confidence for 
justification. Bat we are immoveably constant unto this righteousness by 
faith, and the hope that is from it, for time to come ; and this continually, 
all a:ong tbe remainder of our lives. ' Do wait,' says he, ' for the hope of 
the righteousness by faith.' Those words, of righteousness by faith, are a 
disti notion, severing it from that of works, and is an indigitation tbat he 
meant that to be the righteousness, which had been the subject of his dis- 
course. For otherwise, that word, to wait, did sufficiently import that by 
faith they were expectants of it, without that addition. 

Those words, for the hope of righteousness, are an extensive speech, and 
spoken in many respects, especially three. 

1. It respects a waiting for justification still to come upon us, from that 
i ^u£"f ' righteousness. Hope is of what is yet to come ; and we not only lay hold 

x ^? on that righteousness to be justified by it at present, but we wait for the 
v 'lTope of justification by it for ever. For we are to be justified continually 
0^^t* all along the remainder of our lives ; for it is actus continuus or perpetuus;'' 
and therefore our hopes of justification are to be continued and kept up, and 
we depend wholly on that righteousness which is by fauh, as well as when we 
were converted at first, or do at this day. It is called an ' everlasting right- 
eousness,' Dan. ix. 2L And it is but one and the same righteousness first 
and last which we wait for. 

2. We wait for that eternal life (which is frequently termed our hope, and 
the hope of glory), both after death and at the day of judgment, as the con- 
junct consequent of this righteousness ; for glory is an inheritance entailed 
upon that righteousness of justification, as the holy apostle informs us : Tit. 
iii. 7, ' That being justified by his grace, we should be made heirs accord- 
ing to the hope of eternal life.' And at that day it is that justification and 
forgiveness of sins is with the solemnity of those words (' Come ye and 
inherit,' &c.) finally to be pronounced, and admission thereupon is to be 
given into eternal glory. 

3. Among the persons here expressed by the word we, whose example he 
pri-sseth upon these unsettled Galatians, it falls out that there are true 
believers who have sought God much and long, for the justification by faith 
through Christ's righteousness, and the assurance of it ; and Gocl hath been 
pleased to defer the manifestation of it to their souls. And there were others 
that had obtained an assurance of it in some good degree, and yet either 
through sins renewed, and other sad and dark temptations, have been 
weakened in their faith about it. And in that case there are other ways 
for relief and comfort besides this of the righteousness of faith, that are ready 
to offer themselves unto such souls, or otherwise are apt to faint in waiting 
(as the Psalmist speaks of himself), and to have their souls ' made sick,' 
(as Solomon speaks of ' hope deferred '), and are ready to grow weary, and 
give over waiting for the Lord any longer. Now in such a case, who is it 
that giveth those poor souls (who make the greatest number of believers) 
patience of hope to wait ? Lam. iii. 29, ' He putteth his mouth in the 
dust, if so be there may be hope,' and causeth them to wait (as there it is 
also said), and causeth them to wait on till God shall reveal himself to their 
souls (which is the thing I cited this place for, and have opened as I have 
done). It is even the Spirit. And for his great honour, it is added by 
the apostle, ' We, through the Sj)irit, wait.' It is.-oae of his greatest works 
in us to hold our hearts constantly fixed to this righteousness, and to settle 
our whole expectation upon it, and to continue so to do, that we may look 

Chap. V. in our salvation. 23 

unto no other righteousness for justification and salvation. These Galatians 
having at their first calling embraced Christ nakedly, and him alone, Pox 
justification, as vex; 7 and 8 insinu did run well,' Bays he ; ' who 

did hinder von, that ye should not obey the truth ? This persuasion coin -th 
not of him that calleth you.' One true cause that so many of them 
ward had fallen to the doctrine of works was that they would not wait by 
pure faith, at which this place also glanceth. They would see something 
in themselves, ;ts a ground of a believing on Christ, and so had recourse to 
themselves, to their own doings and actings, for a foundation of it ; at least 
to join them in commission with Christ to justify them. A new convert in 
Christianity, such an one especially, is in a great danger of thus diverting ; 
for the spirit that is within us would of itself go that way, unless power- 
fully detained from it by this other blessed Spirit in us. The law is in- 
grafted in every man by nature, and was in pure nature of innocency, 
which knew no other way for justification but by a man's own righteousness, 
and it was the law of nature to be thereby justified. And this new nature 
that is begotten in a Christian is, in the groundwork of it, materially a con- 
formity to the same law ; and the law is continued under grace to be a tuto r 
to instruct it how to walk in truth of holiness. And hence the heart is 
apt to listen to the other dictates of it even in the point of justification also. 
And again it is man's own righteousness which Paul, after many years' ex- 
perience of the righteousness of faith, was yet by reason of the propensity 
of nature to it, afraid to be found in, Phil. iii. And the dispositions of 
righteousness that are renewed in us, and the duties we perform, do often 
offer their help to supply the room of faith, giving us confidence ere Christ 
comes. And Christ, to try us, stays often long (as Samuel did his coming 
to Saul) ere he reveals himself. And as Abraham, waiting long for a child, 
turued aside to Hagar, so do we to works. Now in all these hazards, who 
took thee by the hand, and taught thee the way of sheer faith, and then 
afterward the way of bare waiting upon God ? Who instructed thee by a 
strong hand, and would not suffer thee to go in the way of the law, but 
strengthened and secretly supported thy spirit in waiting till God should ' rain 
down righteousness,' as the prophet speaks ? It was this good Spirit ; and 
nothing else could or had been able to have done it in thee, but that Spirit 
who moved on the chaos when it was darkness, and but one step from 
nothing, and newly come out of nothing, and ready to return unto nothing 
again ; and who by his almighty power upheld, hatched, and supported it 
from falling into nothing, Gen. i. It is the same good Spirit who enliveneth 
and inspiriteth such a soul in its confessions. It was he who fostered and 
maintained and kept up this resolved purpose in thy heart, to remain com- 
fortless for ever, otherwise than by such comforts as Christ and his right- 
eousness should afford thee. And though thou didst vehemently hunger 
and thirst after righteousness of justification, as well as of sanctifi:ation, yet 
thou wouldst have starved rather than have lived upon thy own bread ; that 
is, have trusted to thine own righteousness ; and none but Christ, and his 
righteousness, who is ' the Lord our righteousness,' and his alone, was it 
would satisfy thee ; yea, that none else should was the fixed resolve of thy 
heart. It is the Spirit guides and leads thee, thus ver. 18 of this 5th 
chapter, ' If ye be led by the Spirit, ye are not under the law,' which is spoken 
in point of justification. He took thee by the hand, and gently led thee the 
right way therein, as well as (according to what is spoken in respect of 
eanctification) he led thee to walk nolily. The Spirit is the leader and con- 
ductor in both, as the coherence with his former and his immediate fore- 



going discourse do shew, and do suit this of these works to be the scope of 
these words in common to either. 

Fifthly; "When thou didst attain unto joy and peace in believing, though 
Christ was the peace-maker, yet who was the peaqe- hrinfrer ? It was the 
Holy Ghost : Rom. xv. 13, ' Now the God of hope fill you with all joy and 
peace in believing, that ye may abound in hope, through the power of the 
Holy Ghost.' All that ' joy unspeakable and full of glory,' 1 Pet. i. 8, that 
' peace which passeth all understanding,' Phil. iv. 7, whereby we ' glory in 
tribulation,' Rom. v. 2, and are ' more than conquerors,' Rom. viii. 37, to 
whom is it to be ascribed ? Whose operation is it ? The Holy Ghost's. 
It is particularly appropriated to him ; and therefore it is styled, ' joy in 
the Holy Ghost :' Rom. xiv. 17, ' The kingdom of God is not meat and 
drink ; but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost.' As 
God's kingdom consists of these things, so this joy is a peculiar belonging 
to his Spirit ; it is his jurisdiction, it is styled joy in the Holy Ghost ; when 
yet our joy is in God and in Christ objectively, yet in the Holy Ghost effi- 
ciently, which is therefore elsewhere styled, ' The joy of the Holy Ghost :' 
so 1 Thess. i. 6. And the consolations we have are called ' The comforts 
of the Holy Ghost,' Acts ix. 31, as being the author and diffuser of them 
into our hearts, &c. In which sense our praying is in like manner said to 
be in the Holy Ghost (Jude, ver. 20), as the inditer of our prayers, 
Rom. viii. And it is also thus termed joy in the Holy Ghost, by way of a 
superlative eminency, in difference from all other joys which have ever 
entered into the heart of man ; and in compare to which all other joys are 
but as the crackling of thorns, the fuel they are fed with being earthy and 
terrene. It is a joy ' not as the world giveth' (saith Christ, speaking of his 
peace). And it therefore hath the peculiar character of glfirjous joy, as 
being joy of another kind, and also unspeakable for degrees and abundance ; 
' more joy than when their corn and wine,' increasing never so much, 
afforded, Ps. iv. 7. We use to distinguish things that are excellent, by 
joining the name of the workman, author, or efficient, when in his work- 
manship he transcendeth all other artists. And so it is in this. All the 
sweetmeats of heaven (and this joy is the taste of the hidden manna), he 
hath the keeping and delivery of them out, where and when he will. And 
not only so, but he tempers them, and all the cordials out of God the 
Father's love, and Christ's heart and blood, and mingleth his own love with 
theirs, and puts them into our hearts, conveying them in promises of the 
word, and fitly and seasonably applies them, and reserves them for us as 
we need. |And though Christ bequeatheth that peace and joy as his last 
legacy, he being the purchaser of it by his death, yet it is the Holy Ghos t 
that is his administrator and executor of it, to perform it, ancTexecute his 
will. He it is that maketh known to us that love which hath lain hid in 
the "heart of God the Father towards a particular soul, in choosing him at 
first, and then giving him to Christ, and giving his Son to die for him. It 
is he who displays that love which is laid out in infinite wisdom, contriving 
and ordering all about every man's particular salvation who is saved. It is 
he likewise that takes of Christ's, and shews and brings home his love in 
giving himself for every such soul, and causeth it to ' know the love of 
Christ, which passeth knowledge ;' which he did vouchsafe to our apostle; 
' Who loved me' (says he), ' and gave himself for me,' Gal. ii. 20. He 
shews these things (as Christ's word is), and tells over the stories of them 
in a way of application and comfort to a man's own heart in particular ; and 
withal, lets in the taste of them ; and makes the loves of all the three pass 

Chap. V.J in our salvation*. 25 

through and through us, even through our very inwards, as oil that soaks 
into the bones, and rcfrcshcth the marrow within them, even this ' oil of 
gladness,' which is purely of his making. And he gives an immediate taste 
of that love fresh out of the heart of God and Christ, and causeth every 
faculty in its kind to taste how good the Lord is. He gives us a relish of 
the sweetness, of the deliciousness of loves ; loves, in the plural, as it is 
expressed in Cant. v. 1 ; which we are made abundantly to drink and taste of, 
as it is said Cant. v. 1. In Rom. v. 5, you have it thus expressed, ' Hope 
maketk not ashamed ; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts 
by the Holy Ghost, which is given unto us.' Given us he had been afore, 
to endow us with justifjdng faith, and all those glorious fruits of it, which 
he setly had enumerated ; as peace with God, ver. 1 ; access by faith into 
grace, ver. 2 ; rejoicing in hope of the glory of God; glorying in tribulation; 
and patience working experience ; and experience, hope : and that hope 
rising up, in the end, to a steadiness, solidity, and constancy, as never to 
be confounded ; no, not in a man's own apprehension or fears. And this 
hope is wrought by shedding the love of God abroad in the heart, so as 
never to be violated or temerated by prevailing doubtings any more. And 
this he reckons last, as the sum, the complement of all the foregoing privi- 
leges. And this last, as well as all those other, are the effects of the Spirit 
given us ; for he working those other first, and then this of shedding the 
love of God over and above. Now that wherein this love of God and Christ 
materially or objectively doth consist, the apostle tells us in the following 6th, 
7th, and 8th verses, that ' God himself hath commended his love to us, that 
when we were enemies, Christ died for us ;' than which there cannot be a 
higher strain or note that love could reach unto. Yet the coherence of 
this place shews, thatif the material part of this love should be declared in 
words never so illustriously, without the power of the Holy Ghost accom- 
panying it, and his shedding that love abroad in the heart ; yea, if these 
very words were used, whereby God himself commends his love by the 
Holy Ghost himself, as the penman of them ; yea, if these words were 
preached and enlarged upon by the apostles themselves, ay, and by all the 
angels in heaven too (if they were sent by God to do it), yet they would 
avail nothing upon our hearts to affect them therewith, without a transcend- 
ent operation of this blessed Spirit, whose work and office is to be ' the 
Comforter.' Yea further, where this Holy Spirit doth, by this and such like 
words as those, setting forth the love of God and Christ, perfume and bedew 
the souls of believers in his ordinary dispensation of faith with the consola- 
tions of the Almighty, more or less ; yet the text in Rom. v. 5 means and 
intends, by that shedding abroad God's love, a higher communication of the 
love of God than those more commonly vouchsafed. And as there is 
promised a pouring forth of this Spirit, so there is a pouring forth joys in 
the Holy Ghost more extraordinary, which in its measure doth exceed the 
dispensings by the ordinary light of faith believers are accustomed unto. 
And the reason for this latter dispensation may be resolved unto this, that 
this Holy Spirit ' searching the deep things of God,' and knowing the 
height, depth, breadth, and length of his love, to the extremest dimensions 
of it, and coming immediately upon men's souls from out of the heart of 
God and Christ, is enabled from thence to bring this their love warm im- 
mediately out of their hearts and convey it into ours, and give us a true 
and native original taste of and from the things themselves, and the sweet- 
ness thereof. And so he sheds it abroad (as the word here is) into every 
chink and cranny of the soul, thirsting after this love, and brings it as fresh 


as the mother's milk comes out of the dug into the child's mouth or 
stomach ; and his love so shed into us by the Holy Spirit, is digested or 
turned into love in us, and returned on our parts towards God and Christ 
again. This is another manner of thing than all the words that ever have 
been or can be uttered ; yea, though penned by the Holy Ghost himself, 
speaking the greatest things thatcan be uttered of this love, and enlargingour 
minds to the most extensive conceptions of the dimensions of this love, so 
far as words or arguments by words will avail to do it, though uttered by 
the tongues of men or angels. But, when the Spirit by the word (for I 
speak not of revelations without that word, or besides it), shall add his con- 
diment and seasoning to that love of God set forth in the word, with 
diffusing joy which passeth understanding, this doth infinitely surpass even 
J^l^uch joys ; as he doth sometimes unto some saints vouchsafe. 

Sixthly; If we consider all the fellowship and communion we have with the 
persons of the Father and the Bon, we shall find that this Holy Spirit is 
the introducer of us into it, and the manager and transacter of it in us, and 
for them with us. ' Our fellowship is with the Father, and with the Son,' 
1 John i. 3. By means of which it is that our joy mentioned is a full 
joy, ver. 4. And all this fellowship is through the help and manifestations 
of the Holy Ghost: Phil. ii. 1, ' If there be any comfort in love' (which 
is peculiarly attributed to the Father) ; ' If any fellowship of the Spirit,' 
who communicates both these. This place seems to speak, in the matter 
of it, somewhat parallel to that of the same apostle : 2 Cor. xiii. 14, ' The 
grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion 
of the Holy Ghost be with you all.' Now it is the love of the Father which 
ordained Christ and salvation for us ; it is the grace of Christ which wo.ks 
our salvation by redemption ; as you read how grace is in that sense and 
respect attributed unto Christ, 2 Cor. viii. 9. But yet it is the Holy 
Ghost imparts and conveys all things that the Father or Son hath. He takes 
them and reveals them to us, and so glorifies them both unto us : John 
xvi. 14, 15, 'He shall glorify me,' said Christ, 'for he shall receive of 
mine, and shall shew it unto you. All things that the Father hath are 
mine : therefore, said I, he shall take of mine, and shall shew it unto you.' 
In saying, All that the Father hath are mine, he doth plainly affirm that it 
is the Spirit that shews all that is the Father's to us, as well as Christ, and 
what is Christ's. And in that renowned place in the gospel of John, where 
Christ promiseth that ' he and his Father will come to us, and make their 
abode with us,' and that he 'will manifest himself to us,' John xiv. ver. 
21—23. Yet in the verse 20 immediately foregoing, Christ says, 'At that 
day ye shall know that I am in my Father, and you in me, and I in you ; ' 
in that day, namely, when he should give and send his Spirit, as by this 
verse, being compared with verse 16, appears. And therefore it is, that 
that fulness of joy which ariseth from the communion with these persons 
is termed, 'joy in the Holy Ghost' (that is, through the Holy Ghost) ; and 
the communion of the Holy Ghost, although the objects of that joy are the 
love and persons of the Father and Son. 

Seventlily ; All the evidence and witnessing of all or any grace wrought 
in us (though not accompanied with joy unspeakable and full of glory), as a 
love in us to God the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, they are all of his 
working, and from him. 

Do our own consciences witness to any eminent holy disposition that is 
written in our hearts, such as the apostle professeth he found in his own 
heart, even to a willingness to be accursed from Christ, for the glory of 

ItXv^t. \^y»jjtf 'fy ° It* m *% &+, £A£^ 

Chap. V.J in our salvation 1 . 27 

God, and the salvation of his own countrymen the Jews ? The evidence 
of this to his conscience was from the Holy Ghost, without whose testi- 
mony joined to that of his conscience, his conscience would not have wit- 
nessed it. Natural conscience witnesseth the things of the law naturally in 
man, Rom. ii., yet gracious dispositions it cannot. Here the apostle him- 
self speaketh himself concerning this matter: Rom. ix. 1-3, ' I speak the truth 
in Christ, I lie not, my conscience also bearing me w itness in the Moly Ghost. 
I could wish that myself were accursed from Christ for my brethren, my kins- 
men according to the flesh.' When he says, my conscience bearing me witness in 
the Holy Ghost, he speaks it not only because the Holy Ghost was he that 
had wrought that grace in him, but that, in point of his conscience witness- 
ing of it, it was the Spirit who was the pause of that witness. Conscience 
indeed was the faculty that was the substance that witnessed this to his 
soul, but it was in (that is, from) the Holy Ghost so testifying with it. 
And therefore if that or any other grace in us be evidenced to us, it is he 
that is the eminent witness, and causeth that grace to speak so loud as to 
witness it : Rom. viii. 16, ' The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit^ 
that we are the children of God.' It maybe read ' witnesseth to our spirit,' • 
and ' witnesseth a Uh our spirit.' And though man hath a reflecting faculty 
as a man, which (1 Cor. ii.) the apostle indigitates, ' None knoweth the 
things of a man, but the spirit that is in man,' yet the discerning the 
things of God, and of his supernatural working in a man, the apostle in 
the same place attributes to the Spirit, as the person who works all, and 
makes all in us, and also revea ls all that to us which he worketh. He» 
■ writes firs t all graces in us, and then teacheth our consciences to read his 
(handwriting, which we could never do without his light. In 1 John v. ver. 
6 and 7, you read of six witnesses, ' three in heaven,' and ' three on earth,' 
who are witnesses of two things : 1, Christ to be the Son of God ; 2, To 
believers' hearts of their own salvation, as in ver. 1, ' Whosoever believeth 
that Jesus is the Christ is born of God,' which also is evident by compar- 
ing ver. 13, where both these two are put together, as the things believers 
might know, through what he had written in this epistle, especially now 
last written in those immediate foregone verses. Now you find there in 
these 6th and 7th verses, that the Spirit, or the Holy Ghost, is men- 
tioned in either catalogue ; first, among the witnesses in heaven, ' The 
Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost ;' and yet again this Spirit, that is 
a witness in heaven, is yet numbered with those that bear record on earth, 
too. Ver. 8, ' The Spirit, the water, and the blood ;' and he, the first, 
and as the principal of these on earth, is set before water and blood. One 
among other reasons I have apprehended for this, is that he efficiently is 
the grand witness with those other two on earth in their witnessing ; and 
to whatsoever they bear their testimony, this Spirit joins with them in it, 
and brings home their testimony into our hearts ; as without whom and 
which their witness would be of no force. As, for example, if Christ's 
blood, when believed on, witnesseth to our hearts, by giving our hearts ease 
and peace, it is because this Spirit joins with it in its testimony. If water, 
or the new creature (begotten of water and this Spirit, the holy Spirit 
working as water in cleansing us), if that do testify to us, it is in virtue of 
the Holy Ghost's conjecture with it, and irradiation of it, and it is that 
which gives its validity of testimony to it: as Rom. viii. 16, ' He witnesseth 
with our spirits ; ' that is, our graces (or that which is born of the Spirit, 
which is spirit), and in the saineTJohn v. 6, the apostle resolves all into 
this, as the foundation of the other's testimonies, ' It is the Spirit that 


beareth witness, because tbe Spirit is truth.' It is he therefore that bears 
the name of witness, y-a'^l^y, as being the ' Spirit of truth,' as Christ 
also calls him. And truly m that Rom. viii., where it is rendered, ' The 
Spirit witnesseth with our spirits,' tbe Holy Ghost, in the original, hath so 
composed the words, that they import his witnessing to_ our spirits as well 
as with our spirits ; and that witnessing <^Ji. hath a respect to the witness 
of the other two persons, the Father and Christ, as with whom this Spirit 
should witness to our spirits ; they all three, the witnesses in heaven, con- 
joining their testimonies together to persuade our spirit (that is, our souls 
and graces in them), ' that we are the children of God.' And if so under- 
stood, then the witnessing both of the Father and of Christ unto our salva- 
tion is eminently attributed to the Spirit, who only is named, as also in 
witnessing the truth by Christ, and the especial honour thereof is given 
to him, which accords with that fore-cited speech of Christ, John xvi. 14, 15. 
And thus he is the great witnesser, both of heaven and of earth, to this of 
our being the sons of God. 

Eighthly; As thus in respect of evidencing our graces to us, and his join- 
ing with God the Father and Christ in their testimonies also to us, the 
Spirit doth the work so as to jead us into all truths of the word and secrets 
of God whatever, which in this life are revealed ; it is he whom God "sends 
to discover and convince us of them all : 1 Cor. ii. 10, £ He searcheth all 
the deep things of God.' He is the keeper of all those archives of eternity, 
and they are all committed to his custody, and he lets us into the view of 
them, and reveals what is revealed of them unto us ' as he will.' There is 
not a thing that God hath prepared for us that love him, ver. 9 (which is 
spoken of the hidden things of the gospel, ver. 7), but he is the manifester 
of it to one or other of the saints ; it is he leads into all truth : 2 Tim. i. 
13 and 14, ' Hold fast the form of sound words, which is in Christ Jesus.' 
But, alas ! might they say of ourselves, we are apt to let them slip and leak 
out (as Heb. ii. 1), and to be ' carried away with every wind of doctrine,' 
Eph. iv. (this we are prone to be), therefore he adds, ver. 14, ' That good 
thing' (so he calls the truth of the doctrine of wholesome words, for bonum 
el verum convertuntur), ' keep by the Holy Ghost which dwelleth in us.' 
Who also brings them home to our remembrance when we have forgotten 
them, John xiv. 26. 

And as these matters, in point of faith, and assurance, and joy, and all 
communion with God the Father and the Son, are transacted by this Spirit, 
together with the revelation of all truths, so, 

Ninthly; If we view all and the whole of the work and works of sanctifi- 
tion that are wrought in us, or proceed from us, it will appearTKat it is ne 
that works them all in us and for us. This is the third part of the appli- 
cation of salvation to us ; according to that distribution which Christ makes, 
John xvi. 8, 11, and which he attributes to the Spirit, 'when he is come, 
he shall convince the world of judgment,' that is, of true holiness, sancti- 
fication, and reformation of heart and life ; as in the Old Testament 
frequently, and in the New, that word judgment is used, as Mat. xii. 20. 
That Christ shall ' bring forth judgment to victory,' citing ver. 18 out of 
the Old, viz., out of Isa. xlii. 1, ' He shall shew judgment to the Gentiles.' 
And in respect of his working herein, he hath this denomination made 
appropriate to him, viz., ' a Spirit of judgment,' purging away the filth of 
sin in his people, Isa. iv. 4, And holiness is called ' the sanctification of 
the Spirit,' 1 Peter i. 2, and 2 Thess. ii. 13. And for this cause he bears 
the name of the Holy Spirit, as the eminent efficient of holiness in us. 

Chap. V.] in our salvation. 29 

And accordingly as men have grown up into, and increased moro and moro 
in, holiness, they have heen said to he tilled with the Holy Ghost, as, Luke 
i. 41, it is said of Elizabeth the mother, and her child tin; Baptist; and 
his eminent holiness is expressed by this, ' He shall be fdlcd with the Holy 
Ghost even from his mother's womb,' Luke i. 15. And the same strain 
of speech goes on in the New Testament : Acts vi. 3, ' Choose men full of 
the Holy Ghost and. wisdom.' Of Barnabas it was said, ' A good man, and 
full of tlie Holy Ghost,' Acts xi. 28; and the super- excelling fulness and 
eminency of Christ's graces is set out by this measure, that he had ' the 
Spirit above measure ; ' for this Spirit's indwelling in him was the fountain 
and standard of his infinitely transcending holiness. 
Let us go over the several particulars of that work. 

1. Habitual holiness, and all tbe principles of holiness. I have shewn 
afore that they are wholly of his operation, and this our baptism (which is 
the seal of regeneration, or of the new creature) doth signify in a special 
manner. The letter of that word Buirra imports not simply to wash, or to 
he washed, but to be dyed also. It is also taken from the dyer's vat, into 
which what clothes are dipped they carry away in them a new habitual 
tincture. The Holy Ghost takes a man's heart, and dyes it anew, changeth 
it. As a cloth goes into the vat of one colour and comes out of it of another, 
' so is he who is born of the Spirit : ' he goes wholly flesh, comes out spirit 
in a good degree, ' which two are contrary,' Gal. V. 

2. Mortification of sin and to the world is ascribed to the Spirit : Rom. 
viii. 13, ' For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die ; but if ye, through the 
Sjiirit, do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live.' It was prophesied 
by Malachi, Mai. ii. 2, 3, that Christ coming after the Baptist, should 
1 purify the sons of Levi ' by ' fuller's soap, and the refiner's fire.' Now 
who is that refiner's fire but this Spirit ? as appears by comparing Isa. iv. 4, 
where he is styled ' the Spirit of burning,' and ' the Spirit of judgment ;' 
the Spirit of burning, consuming and purging out our dross and filth ; and 
there also is the prophecy of Christ's coming to ' baptize with the Holy 
Ghost and with fire,' as the Baptist expounded it ; the Holy Ghost, as it is 
spoken, partly because what remaining filth his baptism of water had not 
cleansed out, Christ's Spirit, as fire, should do it ; for, Num. xxxi. 23, the 
fire is made a stronger purifier than water ; and even of the Baptist himself 
and his ministry (the Spirit of God accompanying it), it was foretold by 
Isaiah, chap, xl., that the glory and beauty of the whole creation should be 
blasted, and caused to fade and wither, as flowers of the grass are by a wind, 
in and to new converts' hearts, and deading their souls, being deadened 
unto it, when the voice of the crier should come and preach repentance to 
the people, and the glory of the Lord (Christ, namely) should be revealed. 
The grass withered, and the flower faded (ver. 7) in such men's hearts as 
were savingly wrought upon by his voice and cry. And how came this to 
pass ? It is added, ' The Spirit of the Lord hath blown upon it.' And the 
apostle Peter expounding this prophecy, says, That all believers wrought 
upon by his and the apostle's ministry, had ' p urifi ed their souls,' 1 Peter 
i. 22, by the preaching of the gospel, and then referrefh us unto this very 
place in Isaiah, ' B t emg born again ;' ver. 23, ' For all flesh is as grass, and 
the glory thereof aTuie~TTower of grass. The grass withereth, and the 
flower thereof falleth away ; but the word of the Lord endureth for ever ; 
and this is the word which by the gospel is preached unto you, ver. 24 
and 25. 

3. There is in Scripture ascribed to the Holy Ghost the implantation of 


all the contrary graces, which are so often compared to flowers and the 
gardens of them, and unto trees in orchards and beds of spices, planted 
artificially by a florist (which is an allusion the Holy Ghost delights to use 
in that book of Canticles) ; the fruits and flowers whereof shall never fade 
(as the flower of grass doth), but grow up, and flourish to eternal life ; 
which flowers, &c, because planted in her heart, the spouse there calleth 
her garden — ' upon my garden ' — as also Christ calls it his garden, and both 
in that one verse, Cant. iv. 16, which, as appears by ver. 12, was her own 
self. ' An enclosed garden is my sister, my spouse,' says Christ of her, 
' a spring shut up, a fountain sealed.' And ver. 13 and 14, ' Thy plants 
I are ar- orchard of pomegranates, a fountain of gardens, a well of living 
waters, and streams from Lebanon ;' which is certainly an enumeration of 
particular graces in their distinction and variety, if we knew how aptly to 
apply those similitudes in each to what is proper to each. But however, it 
serves in general to instruct us, that there is such a variety of graces in our 
hearts, as here of trees in the spouse's heart, * and that the heart of every 
saint is an orchard to such spiritual plants growing therein ; and in like 
manner, a garden to a like variety of flowers, as in ver. 12. And various 
graces are meant by either. And the planting and bringing forth these are all 
ascribed to the Holy Spirit, as Christ's chief planter. Thus I understand 
that fore-cited ver. 12, ' A garden enclosed, a spring shut up,' to intend 
that she had two things enclosed in her heart. 

(1.) All sorts of graces, planted as in a garden, as the effects. 

(2.) The indwelling of the Spirit, as the spring and producer of all these 
flowers, and accordingly in ver. 15 she is said to be 'a fountain of gardens, 
a well of living water, and streams from Lebanon.' Now that well of living 
water is apparently the Spirit : John iv. 14, ' But whosoever drinketh of the 
water that I shall give him, shall never thirst ; but the water that I shall 
give him, shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life ;' 
which is interpreted to be the Holy Ghost (John vii. 38, 39), which comes 
as a spring from Lebanon, that is, from that high mountain, even from 
heaven, from the throne of God and of the Lamb, as Rev. xxi. 1, ' And he 
shewed me a pure river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding out of 
the throne of God and of the Lamb,' which watereth these flowers ; which 
well the church hath in her belly, as Christ's word is in that of John the 
Evangelist, chap. vii. 38. And all these plants in Christ's garden, which 
is the soul of a believer, are of the Spirit's bringing forth and setting ; for 
as the earth, watered with fructifying water, brings forth plants as at the 
first creation, so the soul, bedewed with the Spirit, brings forth ' trees of 
righteousness, of the planting of the Lord, that he might be glorified,' Isa. 
lxi. 3 ; which (as appears by comparing ver. 1) is recorded as the effect of 
Christ's having this Spirit given him : ' The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, 
to preach the gospel,' whereof this is made the immediate effect, viz., the 
communicating the same Spirit unto his members, for this end, to plant in 
them trees of righteousness. Thus it is ascribed unto this Spirit, and ver. 
11 of the same chapter it is added, ' For as the earth bringeth forth her bud, 
and as the garden causeth the things that are sown in it to spring forth, so 
the Lord God will cause righteousness and praise to spring forth before all 
nations.' In a word, he is styled the Spirit of grace, Heb. x. 29 as the 
eminent efficient of all our graces ; and therefore, they that apostatise are 
said to do despite unto this Spirit, as he is the efficient of all graces and 
gracious workings. 

*Qu. 'garden'?— Ed. 

Chap. V.] in our salvation. 81 

4. As the planting, so the drawing them forthwith into act, both bud 
and fruit, and causing them to grow, is his work also. 

(1.) The drawing them forth into act, or the acting of them, or the caus- 
ing them to shoot forth, is ascribed to him. He is that wind which, blow- 
ing upon our graces, causeth them to How out, even as his blowing upon 
the flower of the grass (as you heard out of Isa. xl.) withers and mortifies 
the flowers or glories of this world to new converts. And this follows in 
the next words of the same chapter: Cant. iv. 16, 'Awake, north wind; 
and come, thou south; blow upon my garden,' says the spouse, 'that the 
spices thereof may flow out. Let my beloved come into his garden, and 
Bat his pleasant fruits.' There are two prayers in those word; tho first to 
the Spirit, 'Come, thou south wind, and blow;' and the second to Christ 
himself, 'Let my beloved come into his garden' when it shall be thus 
blown upon. First, the wind there apparently is the Holy Ghost, Ezek. 
xxxvii. 8d, 14th verses compared with 5th, 6th: 'As the wind bloweth 
where it listeth, so is he that is born of the Spirit.' The Spirit is a quick- 
ening wind (the breath of the living God and of Christ), who coming upon 
a man doth regenerate him, and infuse a new spirit into him, as Christ had 
there said. And after he is thus quickened and born, a soul new born of 
the Spirit, then by blowing thereon the same Spirit doth cause him to 
operate and act as such a new creature, who is so high bom, should 
in some measure do. Insomuch as all and the whole of him who is 
truly born again is from this Spirit, not only his first begetting, but 
his after actings ; which latter Christ also involves in saying, ' so is he 
that is born of the Spirit,' supposing him first to have been begotten 

If any shall object, that the Spirit is but one and the same Spirit, viz., 
the person, and how can he be termed both the north wind and the south 
wind, which are not only diverse, but blow contrary ways ? the answer 
is, It is true the person of the Holy Ghost is one and the same person, as 
in himself considered, but his being said to be a wind is in respect of his 
operations upon us ; and so his blasts may blow several ways, not only in 
these two points of the compass there mentioned, but several others ; and 
in this respect he is said to be ' seven spirits,' Kev. i. 7, from whom grace 
is there prayed for as well as from Christ and the Father. And even the 
natural wind in the air is one and the same wind for the substance of it, 
whilst yet it turneth itself about, as God pleaseth, unto several quarters, 
from north to south, &c. And this objection is preoccupated by the 
apostle : 1 Cor. xii. 3, 4, ' Now there are diversities of gifts, but the same 
Spirit;' and so on, ver. 6—8, and 'there are differences of administra- 
tions,' &c. Now, both these contrary winds are needful to cause the 
several graces in believers to flow forth : ' Come,' says the spouse, praying 
to this Spirit, ' come, and blow upon my garden, that the spices thereof 
may flow out.' So then the Spirit's operations upon those graces is the 
blowing upon them ; and their exerting that hidden virtue or active power 
that lies latent in them, through the excitement and actings of the Holy 
Ghost, is that their flowing forth. And it is as if she had said, I indeed 
have these plants and graces habitually rooted in me by thee, holy and 
blessed Spirit ; but I am utterly unable so much as so give forth the least 
scent or virtue of them (which other plants naturally do) without thy breath- 
ing on them, and moving and impregnating of them. Yet even earthly plants 
yield their fragrancy of themselves yet more strongly and abundantly when 
the wind drives them to and fro, and exhales the scent out of them ; but 


she, in the sense of her utter inability, prays to the Spirit to come and in- 
fluence her. 

And from hence, by the way, we may observe an instance of a warrant 
to pray distinctly to tbe person of the Spirit ; as if it had been said by 
her, Awake, and come, thou Holy Spirit. As likewise to pray distinctly 
to the person of Christ, as she also doth in these next words, ' Let my be- 
loved come ; ' and that is, Then be thou also pleased to come and visit thy 
garden, when first thy Spirit, sent by thee, hath drawn out and educed 
from out of those plants that are growing therein, those pleasant savours 
so pleasing to thee, which these my graces, when thus acted by the Spirit, 
do afford. And indeed the many former prayers and petitions, ever and 
anon found up and down in this book of the Canticles, do put it out of all 
question that it is useful for us thus to pray to each person. 

There is not so much as the least good thought, nor the least bud which 
we with all our inherent graces are able to bring forth, unless this Holy 
Spirit efficaciously blows upon us, 2 Cor. iii. 6. It is the Spirit (says he) 
who is £w&<ro/</'~v, that quickens and gives life ; and he speaks this of the 
Holy Spirit joining with the gospel, even the Spirit of the living God, whom 
he had under that title mentioned afore in ver. 3. And that his quickening 
relateth unto all and everything of the Spirit of life within us, even unto the 
production of but one, a single individual one action, though it also be but 
the least good thought, is expressly said in ver. 5 : ' Kot that we are suffi- 
cient of ourselves to think any thing as of ourselves ; but our sufficiency is 
of God ; ' that is, unless God (the living God) by his living Spirit (as in 
ver. 3) do form it in us, and although the matter of a good thought were 
cast into our minds, yet as seed thrown into a barren soil, it would sow 
this in our hearts, it would instantly become a dead work, such as all the 
works of unregenerate men are, Heb. vi. 1. So that our eyes should be 
fixed upon and entirely ascribe all that is good in us to this Spirit as the 
author. And though we and our wills do concur in the acting also, yet he 
is the efficient of that concurrence in us, causing us to do ; yea, and is the 
cause of every degree of that goodness in our actings, ' dividing to every 
man severally as he will,' 1 Cor. xii. 11. 

3. The Spirit produceth all the spir foii al strength we receive, when our 
hearts are ready to be overborne with temptations, or a lust ; or when we 
want strength to do such and such a work or duty ; to suffer, that we may 
be able to endure in such a trial. It is the Spirit gives strength to the 
inner man (Eph. iii. 16, compared with Coloss. i. 10 and 11), likeas 
the Spirit fell on Samson, and gave him strength, who of himself was other- 
wise but as other men. It was he made Elias so bold and courageous, and 
the prophet Amos :: after him, chap. iii. 8, ' Truly,' says he, ' I am full of 
power, by the Spirit of the Lord, and of judgment, and of might, to declare 
to Judah his transgression, and to Israel his sin.' The like he gave the 
Baptist to tell Herod of his sin, which cost him his life. It was because he 
came in the power and spirit of Elias. Take the weakest heart that is, as 
weak as water (as the prophet speaks), and let the Spirit join with it, and 
mingle himself therewith, and it is too hard and strong for all the world ; 
it will snap asunder tentations, as Samson did his withs. There is a 
supply of the Spirit, Phil. i. 10, comes in with fresh forces, when we are 
near to a yielding up the fort, and being led captive, and so he rescues and 
delivers us. In all our walkings with God, he is our guide and faithful 
companion, to see to us and keep us out of harm's way. And often when 

* ' Micah.' — Ed. 

Chap. V.] in otra salvation. 83 

wo stumble, ho puts under his hand, as the psalmist's word is. And a 
little help keeps up a man that is falling or reeling, or to recover him 
again when he is falling. And thus the apostle seems to intend that speech, 
' who helpeth our infirmities. ' Bom. viii. And those infirmities there are not 
to be limited to the infirmities that belong to and accompany our prayers 
only, but which accompany us in all our ordinary walkings. The word 
gwavTiXccfij3dvsra,i supposcth it to be the case of a weak man in himself, who 
yet further hath a weight or a burden hanging on him, which presseth him 
down (as of our corruptions, especially some, or such as arc more proper 
to us, as the apostle exprcsscth, Heb. xii.), who yet having a friend to 
accompany him in his running the race set before him (as there the apostle's 
allegory is), he perceiving the weakling's aptness to sink under the weight, 
does continually relieve him ; and not only shores up and sustains the man, 
but himself takes the other end of his burden (and the far heavier end), and 
so helps him to bear it, and go on along with it. And this the apostle 
expressly there attributes to the Spirit ; and if so be it chanceth that we 
fall, he is still at hand, a present help (as a present help, as David says), 
to take us up ; yea, then when we fall into the foulest mire and dirt, and 
grievously defile ourselves, it is the Spirit that cleanseth us, according to 
that of the apostle : 1 Peter i. 22, ' We through the Spirit purify ourselves.' 
And according to that of David : Ps. li., ' Create in me a clean heart' (after 
he had so foully fallen into uncleanness), and ' take not thy Holy Spirit 
from me,' verses 10, 11. In this case this gracious Spirit says not (as the 
harsh spirits of men would say), Even lie there still, since you would needs 
fall, sprawling in your own filth. Not so this good Spirit : but as if a man 
(a brother) be overtaken with a fault, those that are spiritual are to take 
on them to restore, and often do restore, such a man in the spirit of meek- 
ness ; how much more will and doth this blessed Spirit, who is he that 
makes spiritual those that are such, and endues them with that spirit of 
meekness, out of his own dovelike meekness, restore such an one, and take 
care of him for ever after, lest he fall so again. 

4. He is a Spirit of counsel, powerfully i nstruct ing and convincingly 
teaching how to act and walk, for he directs us to set right steps, and to 
walk with a right foot, and thereby prevents us of many a sin, by season- 
able instruction set on upon our hearts with a strong hand, as Isa. viii. 11. 
For, as the same prophet says, Isa. xi. 2, he is the Spirit of counsel and of 
might. 1. Of counsel to direct. 2. Of might, to strengthen the inner 
man. Such he was to Christ the head, of whom it is there spoken. For 
instance, in that agony (on the determination of which our salvation de- 
pended), and conflict in the garden, when he prayed, ' Let this cup pass,' 
it was this good Spirit that counselled him to die ; and in Ps. xvi. 7 he 
blesseth God for it, ' I bless the Lord that hath given me counsel.' It 
was that counsel that in that case caused his heart to say, ' Not my will, 
but thine.' When we are out of the way he recalls us, and is ' a voice behind 
us, saying, This is the way, walk in it;' and not only thus directs us, but 
taketh us by the arm, and teacheth us to go, Hos. xi. 3. ' Thy Spirit is 
good, lead me,' says the psalmist, Ps. cxliii. 10. And therefore it is a 
usual phrase in Pom. viii. and Gal. iv., our being led by the Spirit. And 
not only so as to direct and lead, but effectually to cause us to walk in his 
statutes and ways. For, 

5. As he is a Spirit of counsel to our understanding part, so an effectual 
persuader and conducter of our wills, with might (as was observed), ' working 
in us the will and the deed, according to his good pleasure.' For although 

vol. vi. o 


the will of a man regenerate is endowed with a new vital principle of spiritual 
life, so as in its willing and acting spiritually it doth it freely, and as a liv- 
ing principle of its own acts, yet it acts concurring with the movings and 
influences of the Spirit, according to that most excellent scripture (as to 
this purpose), Ps. ex. 3, ' Thy people shall be willing in the day of thy 
power.' Herein the Holy Spirit hath determined the controversy, and re- 
conciled the freeness of man's will in conversion, as likewise in the after- 
actings of grace, with the determinating efficacy of the power of God's grace, 
this being so full and infallible a prophecy, certainly foretelling these events 
of their willingness. Now that prophecy doth directly refer to the day of 
Pentecost (whereof that psalm treateth), and of Christ's ascension and sitting 
in heaven ; and that passage refers unto the pouring forth the Spirit that 
day upon the apostles, and unto his coming upon three thousand of the 
Jews converted the same day, and made willing, by the same Spirit accom- 
panying that great apostle's ministry, as the fulfilling of this prophecy. 
You read the story in Acts ii., where you find that willingness ascribed 
unto the Spirit as his work ; and so wonderfully efficacious is his power, 
as it was styled in that psalm, ' The day of his power;' not of man's will. 
Christ's power had the day of it in overcoming man's will. And whereas 
it is said, that ' God worketh in us to will and to do,' it is not by his 
giving in power only to will or to do, but to will, To dsXsiv, the act of will- 
ing, T6 &i\siv; and the giving this was the Spirit's gift. So in those con- 
verts it was by the Spirit (as Ps. ex. compared with Acts ii. will inform 
us), who is indeed the power of the Most High, Luke i. 35. And to cause 
us to do, and therefore to uill, is expressly attributed to this Spirit in 
Ezek. xxxvi., where, first, it is said, ' A new heart also will I give you, and 
a new spirit I will put within you : and I will take away the stony heart out 
of your flesh, and I will give you a heart of flesh ; ' which words denote the 
creating of those principles of spiritual life and habitual graces ; and then 
it is added, ver. 27, ' I will put my Spirit within you, and cause you to ivalk 
in my statutes, and ye shall keep my judgments and do them.' What is 
this other but the same with that in the Philippians, to ' work in us to will 
and to do' ? For if to do, then to be sure to will. And this promise of 
the covenant (and it is the covenant of grace is there promulged) is to work 
in us an evangelical obedience unto all the commandments, which begins 
first with to trill, and then follows to do, according unto that of the apostle, 
' Not to do, but to be willing,' 2 Cor. viii. 10. 

6. As all the principles and the production of the acts and fixing the 
will, so our whole growt h in grace, from first to last, is attributed to this 
Spirit also : Isa. xliv. §, 4, 'T~will pour water upon him that is thirsty, 
and floods upon the dry ground : I will pour my Spirit upon thy seed, and 
my blessing upon thine offspring : and they shall spring up as the grass, as 
willows by the water courses,' or streams. There are two things that 
cause the springing up of grass and growth in willows. 1. Sufficiency and 
plenty of water, either rain from heaven or streams of rivers, when trees 
(as willows) are seated by them. 2. The sun and the sweet influences 
thereof, Deut. xxxii. And for this latter we have elsewhere our Lord 
Christ compared to the sun in this very respect: Mai. iv. 2, ' But unto you 
that fear my name shall the Sun of righteousness arise with healing in his 
wings ; and ye shall grow up as calves in the stall ; ' as the sun causeth 
trees and plants to grow, so beasts too, which latter allusion he prosecutes 
there. But in that of Isa. xliv. he compares the Spirit to the floods and 
the rain, which, increasing the sap within the root and body of the trees, 

Chap. V.] in our salvation. 35 

causeth thorn to grow up and bring forth fruits, even to okl ago : ' I will pour 
Hoods upon the dry ground : I will pour my Spirit upon thy seed.' 

7. The acceptanc e of all these fruits by God, and of our persons by God 
for them, both all along, and specially when all is finished and perfected, is 
by and from the Holy Ghost. Thus Horn. xv. 10 the apostle speaks, ' That 
the offerings up of the Gentiles might be acceptable, being sanctilicd by the 
Holy Ghost.' In which words he sets out the great function and success 
of his gospel ministry, under allusions to the Levitical priesthood, as that 
which succeeded that of the law (Isa. lxvi. 20), in declaring how there had 
been a far more excellent sacrifice offered up to God by his preaching than 
had been by them of old. Their sacrifices were but of beasts, but this was 
of men — the souls of men, which by his preaching had been converted to 
God, even an innumerable company of the Gentiles, which were the first 
fruits and foundation of the church of the New Testament. These sacrifices 
of the gospel also in number far exceed any of the sacrifices of the Old Testa- 
ment that were at any one time ever offered up ; yea, than there had been 
by Solomon, at the foundation and consecration of his new-built temple ; 
and yet all this was as the work but of one apostle. Of those Old Testa- 
ment sacrifices, it is still noted how and what acceptableness they had with 
God, as Abel's, Heb. xi. ; as Noah's, Gen. viii. 20, 21, ' God smelt a sweet / / 
savour ;' and of Solomon, testified by fire coming down from heaven. Now^u ' ( 
of this great New Testament oblation here, that which gave the accept- yfJ^ - t ' 
ableness is expressly said to be the being sanctified by the Holy Ghost, * as ' 
the cause that rendered them acceptable ; and our translators favour it, if 
not imply it, in rendering it, ' Being sanctified by the Holy Ghost ;' that is, 
in that, or because, it was sanctified by the Holy Ghost, and therefore accept- 
able. As for the apostle's own part, he professeth himself but the poor 
instrument ; so in the following 18th verse; and that it was Christ, and his 
Spirit, had wrought all by him. And as he wrought nothing in those Gentile 
hearts, so the acceptation of what was wrought was much less from any 
consideration whatever in him to make this sacrifice accepted by the holy 
God. Far be that from the least of our thoughts ; for it is to be attributed 
unto Christ as the worker of it, ver. 18, and unto the Spirit, in this 16th 
verse, and unto the Spirit as well as unto Christ. Neither is our sanctifi- 
cation, simply in itself, and abstractly considered, as it is in us, of force and 
virtue alone, to cause this acceptation. This the confessions of David and 
Daniel, &c, abundantly do declare. It is the matter indeed, or thing, that is 
accepted, but not the ground or cause of the acceptation. And therefore that 
word sv, in (as in the original), which is translated by the Holy Ghost, is not 
added barely to shew that the Holy Ghost was the author of this and all other 
sanctification that is accepted, but that it might be noticed that it was he 
who was and is the main and principal cause of that acceptation ; and for 
which it hath a due value with God, even for this reason, that our sancti- 
fication is the work of the Holy Ghost. As we esteem the work for the 
workman's sake, so doth God our works for the Holy Ghost's sake, as the 
worker of it. 

If it be said that our good works and holiness have their acceptation from 
Christ ; it is granted, as most true, our persons are accepted in his person, 
as ' the beloved,' Eph. i. 6, and our works in his works of mediation, the 
sole meritorious cause of that acceptation, and as by way of mediation be- 
tween God and us, insomuch as Christ is said to be made sanctification 

* Acceptations istius oblationis sive victim®, causam tribuit sanctificationi. — 
Rolloc in verba. 


itself to us, 1 Cor. i. 30, as if it were no sanctification in the sight of God, 
that is not made accepted for such in Christ. And by him we offer up our 
sacrifices to God ; and God is well pleased with them, Heb. xiii. 15 and 16. 
And upon such an account the Holy Ghost is not the cause of this kind of 
acceptation. This honour is Christ's alone ; yet so as there is left room for 
this Holy Spirit to have the glory of procuring acceptation to our good works 
another way, namely, in that he is the efficient of them, and in that they are his 
works in us. Yea, and our persons also are in such a like respect accepted 
in and for the Holy Ghost, in that we are the temples of the Holy Ghost, 
and he dwells in us ; and God hath respect to the temple for his sake that 
dwells therein. Therefore give and acknowledge that honour to the Spirit, 
for his work and interest, as well as to the Son for his. 

If we have recourse to the metaphor the apostle began with, and continues 
along to the end of the verse, viz., that the Gentiles were made a sacrifice 
and an offering to God, and had their lusts slain by the gospel, the sword 
of the Spirit, as the sacrificing knife, and this by the Holy Ghost, accord- 
ing to that in chap, viii., ' You by the Spirit mortify the deeds of the body,' 
we may extend the allusion to the acceptation of a sacrifice. There were two 
things made the sacrifice acceptable, viz., the altar upon which the offering 
was made, which Christ teacheth us, ' The altar sanctifies the gift ;' and 
that most fitly represented Christ's part in our acceptation : Heb. xiii. 10, 
' We have an altar,' namely Christ, by whom we offer our sacrifice of praises, 
and by whom they are accepted, ver. 12, 15, 1G. But then there was fire 
also, which came forth immediately from the Lord, and consumed the burnt 
offering that was upon the altar. So it was at first in Moses's time, Lev. 
ix. 24 ; and the second time fire came down from heaven, and did the like 
in Solomon's time, 2 Chron. vii. 1, when the temple was finished and conse- 
crated. This signified the Holy Spirit, who comes out from God, to qrvev/na 
ro sx toj ©soli, 1 Cor. ii. 12, even as that fire came forth from the Lord, and 
came upon the apostles to convert the world, like fire ; according to the 
promise that they should be ' baptized with the Holy Ghost, as with fire.' 
And he is termed the ' Spirit of burning,' Isa. iv. 4, as the sacrifices are 
termed burnt-offerings and fire-offerings. And as the fire caused the sacri- 
fice to ascend in smoke (and therefore the Hebrew word for a burnt-offering 
is Gnolak, ascension), and consumed the offering to ashes, so doth this 
Spirit cause our sacrifice, as well as the altar : Ps. xx. 3, ' The Lord accept 
thy burnt sacrifice.' It is in the Hebrew, ' The Lord shall turn to ashes,' 
which our translators rightly translate accept, from the wonted speech of 
Moses's law, which informs us that the smoke which ascended from the 
sacrifice by reason of the fire, is termed up and down in the Levitical law 
' a rest before the Lord,' and ' a savour of rest,' Lev. vi. 15 ; which the 
paraphrasts do in terminis, in our own phrase and words, render ' a favour- 
able acceptation with the Lord ;' and this sweet savour is expressly attributed 
to the fire, as that which did thus sanctify the offering, and the acceptation 
of the sacrifice, its being a fire -offering. He puts it upon account, Lev. 
i. 9 and 13. It is a burnt offering (says the text there), ' an offering made 
by fire, of a sweet savour unto the Lord,' as if he would have said, it is 
therefore of a sweet savour because made by fire. So then as Christ, as 
the altar and mediator, gives an acceptation, so the Srjirit, as the fire that 
consumes the sacrifice, and causethit to ascend in smoke, ca useth the accepta- 
tion also ; but either upon differing accounts, as was explained. 

8. Thp. wh_o)fi edification^ of every saint, byihemeans of grace, which are 
the ordinances and other means whatsoever, alT flow from the benign 

Ohap. V.] in our salvation. 87 

influences of this. Spirit accompanying them, and bedewing men's hearts by 
them. And for the proof of this in general, yon have that passage, Acta 
ix. 31, ' Then had the churches rest, and were edified, walking in the fear 
of the Lord.' And so it is said of churches walking in all the order and 
ordinances of Christ ; as of the Colossian church it is spoken (chap, ii.) that 
they did so ; ' in the comfort of the Holy Ghost,' as the author of that edifi- 
cation and comfort by those ordinances. 

I shall instance particularly in the main, ortlinances of our salvation, and 
shew how our profiting by them is from the Spirit. 

In the p reach ing of the word we receive not only the fruits of the Holy ''{^ 
Spirit, but the Spirit himself, by the hearing of faith, that is, by the hcar^ u^. . 
ing the gospel preached, which is the doctrine of truth : * Our gospel came 
not to you in word only, but in poorer, and in the Holy Ghost,' 1 Thess. 
i. 5 ; 'I create the fruit of the lips, peace, and teach thee to profit,' namely, 
by the lips of those who by office are said to ' preserve knowledge,' Mai. 
ii. 7. All which profiting is attributed to the Spirit : 1 Cor. xii. 7, ' But 
the manifestation of the Spirit is given to every man to profit withal.' It 
is the profit both of a man's self and others. And the Holy Spirit's care 
is very great herein ; he is the Providore Gene ral, t o oversee the overse ers 
of the flock, and to see to it, provide the fittest stewards for every flock: 
Acts xx. 2B, ' The flock over which the Holy Ghost hath made you over- 
seers.' And he fumisheth them with such gifts as shall best serve and 
most suitably agree unto their capacities, and the bore of their understand- 
ings, and to work on their hearts ; and in providential grace disposeth of 
them and their gifts as shall be most agreeable to their spirits and spiritual 
condition. As some ministers are fitted for the profiting of the weak, so 
others to the wise ; even as the apostle says he was a debtor to both, 
Rom. i. And then he takes a further special care of their forehand medi- 
tations and preparations, to suggest such materials and notions for their 
sermons as shall be a food most convenient for men's souls. They are 
'stewards, that give meat in due season,' Mat. xxiv. 45. He fills thes*,^*^ 
breasts of ministers (their spiritual nurses) with consolations and other, if 
truths, suitable to the temper and constitution of their stomachs, and in-^Ut^uj 
structeth them to speak words in season ; and this very often unknown to i 
themselves that speak them, they not having any aim at thee or any other' a *~^ 
man in particular in such passages, which also are utterly unexpected to 
or perhaps not prayed for by him whom yet they greatly concern, when 
yet the Holy Ghost knew whom to direct those passages unto, and had set 
up thy heart as the mark to shoot those arrows into it. 

9. And lastly, to draw to a conclusion, and it is indeed the happy con- 
clusion and crown of the whole work of the Spirit upon us, for we are now 
come to the brink of eternity, the consummation of all. 

(1.) With respect to death, this Holy Spirit, the Comforter, all our life 
long feeds and maintains by faith, more or less, a Jively hope within them 
that are regenerate : 1 Pet. i. 8, ' Blessed be God, that hath begotten us 
again to a lively hope ; ' which, according to the degree of it in any, allays 
that fear of death, the king of sorrows, Job xviii. 14 ; the fear of which 
all men (which have not this Spirit) are subject unto the bondage of all 
their lifetime, Heb. ii. 15 ; from the dominion of which bondage the Spirit 
of adoption frees us, Rom. viii. 15, so as to have our spirits supported by 
faith, so far as ordinarily to be able (when put to it in earnest) to venture 
or cast our souls into the hands of God as a Father. And this the Scrip- 
tures attribute unto this good Spirit. In the 2d Corinthians, 4th and 5th 


chapters, the apostle treats of a believer's dying, and comforts himself and 
them against it ; for upon occasion, as the times then were, he and other saints 
were in continual hazard of death; as ver. 11, 'For we that live are 
always delivered unto death for Jesus' sake.' Now, from whence or from 
whom had he and they supports and reliefs against this, but from the 
Spirit, his working and upholding faith in them ? ' We having the same 
Spirit of faith, according as it is written,' &c, and pertinently quotes a 
saying of David's under the Old Testament in the HGth Psalm, where he 
had been under apparent apprehensions of death, as in the third verse, 
upon occasion of which David had uttered that speech, ' I believed, there- 
fore have I spoken,' ver. 10 ; and spoke it, as it were, in defiance of death 
and all the fears of it, and dangers about it. Now, whence had David this 
confidence ? From the Spirit, says the apostle, as who wrought and main- 
tained that faith in him. Thus it was in the Old Testament, 'and we' 
(says he, under the New Testament), ' having the same Spirit of faith,' we, 
upon the view of such apparent dangers of death, believe and therefore 
speak, with a far greater confidence, by how much the Spirit that is in the 
New exceeds in his comforts the same that was in the Old ; but, from the 
same Spirit, both. And what spake he by this Spirit of faith ? It follows 
in ver. 14, ' We knowing that he which raised up the Lord Jesus shall 
raise up us also by Jesus ; ' this they spake and believed, and comforted 
themselves with against dying. Again, in the 5th chapter, what made 
him confident of a house in heaven when this earthly tabernacle should be 
dissolved ? Even this, and above all this, that God hath given us the 
earnest of his Spirit, ver. 5, to bind the promise of eternal life. And 
from thence it is (says he) that ' we are always confident,' &c, ver. ; 
always, which extends both to all along our lives, and also at our deaths. 
Which is a second thing, that when we come to die, or that the time of 
death approacheth, and is coming upon us, this Spirit it is given to sup- 
port us. For if always, as the apostle even now said, and at all other 
times of our lives, and upon other occasions of fears and distress, he is 
given to help our infirmities, Rom. viii. 28, then especially when we are 
weakest, as at death (to be sure) we shall be, when our flesh fails, &c, Ps. 
lxxiii. 26. 

(2.) And at the last day of the world, who is it shall raise thee up, having 
kept thy bones, dwelt in thy dust all this while, as Christ's Godhead did his 
body, which therefore though in the grave David calls the ' Holy One ' ? 
Ps. xvi. It is this Spirit : Rom. viii. 11, 'But if the Spirit of him that I 
raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, he that raised up Christ from/ 
the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwelleth 
in you.' It is brought in as the comfortable consequent of this Spirit 
dwelling in us ; and having raised thee, leaves thee not, but is the author 
of all thy glory and communion with Father, Son, and himself for ever, 
1 Pet. iv. 14. He is in that respect termed the Spirit of glory ; not of 
grace only, but of glory : ' Blessed are ye, for the Spirit of glory and of 
God resteth on you ; ' that is, you possess for ever this fountain of all 
glory, this Spirit of God, therefore the promise of the Spirit is made ade- 
quate to the whole blessing (as being the mass of blessings) which was 
given to Abraham : Gal. iii. 14, ' That the blessing of Abraham might come 
on the Gentiles though Jesus Christ ; that we might receive the promise of 
the Spirit through faith.' The whole is termed the promise of the Spirit. 



The itscs of the precedent doctrine. 

Use 1. Let me a little affect your hearts with the love of the Spirit, from 
and upon occasion of all that hath been said. There is a daily intercourse 
with, and meditation of, the love of the Father and the love of Christ. 
There is a fellowship of the Father, and a fellowship of the Son, in the 
souls of every believer. But the Holy Ghost, though he hath been uni- 
versally aknowledged as a person equal to either, yet we do not hold and 
pursue after fellowship with him as a distinct person ; nor is his love in 
what he hath done for us set on as a seal upon our hearts. Whereas the 
Scriptures (though more sparingly, because it was he who wrote them) do 
urge obligations upon us, drawn from him, as well as the other two persons. 

If we believe he is a person in the Trinity, let us treat with him as a 
person, apply ourselves to him as a person, glorify him in our hearts as a 
person, dart forth beams of special and peculiar love to, and converse with 
him as with a person. Let us fear to grieve him, and also believe on him, 
as a person ; which our very Creed directs us to. Do you profess to hold 
communion and converse with the saints ? I beseech you, have it with the 
maker of them, the Holy Ghost ; and this not at second hand, by having 
fellowship with those he dwells in, but immediately also with himself. 

Because the Spirit is intimior intbno, is so nearly and intimately united 
to us, dwells in us as our own souls do in us, therefore we converse not 
with him (as we do seldom with our own souls), but are most of all stran- 
gers thereto. Also because his work is but new beginning, and as yet 
imperfect, and but a foundation of that building in eternity to be raised : 
whereas Christ hath perfected his, hath ' perfected for ever those that are 
sanctified' (Heb. x. 1-4), by one offering once made ; it is therefore we dis- 
cern not (mind not) the Holy Ghost, or his works, as we do Christ and 
his. But what says the apostle, Rom. xv. 30, ' Now I beseech you, bre- 
thren, for the Lord Jesus Christ's sake, and for the love of the Spirit, that 
ye strive together with me,' &c. You see he adjures them by the Spirit, 
and his love, and their love unto the Spirit, as well as for Christ's sake. 
The occasion was, ' that ye would pray for me,' says he, that that work of 
the ministry (which is properly the Holy Ghost's work, Acts xiii. 2), may 
prosper in my hand. And if you profess love to the Spirit, whose work it 
is, and so consider his love to you, who hath done so much for you, his 
honour in this work will be dear to you. And inasmuch as he had urged 
them just before, ' for the Lord Christ's sake,' and then subjoins, ' for the 
love of the Spirit,' surely he must mean in like connection of sense, that 
for the Spirit's sake also, and for his love's sake towards them, who had 
borne no less love to them than Christ had done, they would do what he 
exhorted them to. Sure his exhortation falls not lower, nor runs in a lower 
way, to mean only the love which they bore to the Spirit, but it means that 
love which the Spirit himself bore to them, and which is equal to that of 
Christ. And the edge of his persuasive farther lies in this, and is as if he 
had said, Seeing that when we exhort you for Christ's sake, it useth to 
take with you, to move and prevail with you ; so when we urge you by the 
love of the Spirit, it will have no less effect, if you do but consider all he 
hath done for you, or is to you. Now when he moves them for Chrits's 


sake (as in the first place be doth), the meaning is to obtest them by all the 
love that Christ had borne them, and by what he had done for them. When, 
therefore, be adds, ' and for the love of the Spirit' (the Spirit being a per- 
son we are obliged to, as well as unto Christ), can you think he had not 
this as his more especial aim, to move them in like manner by this very 
love of the Holy Ghost, who indeed deals altogether in the affairs of love 
from the Father and the Son ? He proceeds from them by way of love, 
and love in them mutually each to other is the original of his person. And 
as he is the love that is between them both, so it is he who sheds abroad 
the love of both into our hearts ; and it is he who is grieved, as a friend or 
person that loves us (as Eph. iv. 30), when we sin, or neglect that duty 
which is his care and charge to work in us. 

And as this is the apostle's scope, so this love of his ought to be very 
dear unto us ; for if we single out any thing earnestly to entreat some other 
thing from another, that thing we entreat them by must be supposed to be 
most precious to us. Again, when, Rom. viii., he hf>d insisted on this, 
that there is the Spirit of Christ in us, or we are none of his, he then begins 
the enumeration of many great things this Spirit doth for us throughout 
that chapter, by those arguments persuading us not to live after the flesh, 
but after the Spirit. In the midst of these persuasives he comes in with 
this, ' Wherefore, brethren, we are debtors, but not to the flesh.' Those 
words make two entire sentences, one affirmative, that ' we are debtors ;' 
the other negative, ' but not to the flesh ; ' we are not debtors to the flesh. 
Now to whom is it he affirms we are debtors ? Evidently the Spirit, as not 
only the words of opposition, ' not to the flesh' (which two are in this chap- 
ter set as dvrrAii/jjiva, as contraries and opposites, as everywhere else), but 
as the coherence and the illation — ' therefore we are debtors' — shew. It 
was this Spirit he had last spoken of, the Spirit that dwelleth in us as a guide 
and leader, actor and informer of us, as the soul in our souls : ver. 11, • If 
the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwelleth in you, he that 
raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by his 
Spirit that dwelleth in you.' And from thence he infers, ' therefore we are 
debtors.' To whom but to him ? Debtors unto what ? To live after the 
Spirit and not after the flesh : so ver. 12, 13, ' Not to the flesh, to live 
after the flesh ; for if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die : but if ye through 
the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live.' The obligation 
here, you see, runs in the Spirit's name, the arrest is at his suit. Debtors 
then we are, and infinitely indebted to him, and this for dwelling in us ; 
and because we are led and guided by him, as a person that loves us, are 
we wonderfully beholden unto him. And those next words, ' As many as 
are led by the Spirit,' directs us to treat with him as with a person, a fami- 
liar, a friend, that walks with us, takes us by the hand, talks to you, 
adviseth you as the Spirit of counsel (as, Isa. xi. 2, he is called), continually 
speaking in us, ' This is God's way, walk in it.' Again, when we read 
2 Cor. xiii. 14, ' The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, 
and the communion of the Holy Ghost, be with you' : that Koivuvia, which 
we translate communion, doth it not, and may it not, import the fellowship 
and converse that the Holy Ghost vouchsafes to us with himself, as well as 
that with the Father and the Son ? 1 John i. 4. The word in both places 
is one and the same. And when he moves them (Phil. ii. 1) by all these 
considerations, ' If there be any consolation in Christ, any fellowship of the 
Spirit,' ilc, why should we not interpret 'fellowship of the Spirit' for con- 
verse and intercourse had by us from him as a person, as well as consola- 

Chap. VI.] ra otjb salvation. 41 

tion in Christ, is that which is in the person of Christ ? Out of such an 
experimental sense of sweet familiarity and converse had with the Spirit of 
God, doth that speech of Holy David seem to proceed, Ps. cxliii. 10, ' Thy 
Spirit is good, ; Methinks he speaks so feelingly of him, ami of 

that sweetness he had found in him as a friend, as if he had said, I have 
found his counsel and converse so good, give me more of them. And 
when he bids us grieve him not (Eph. iv. 30), doth it not import one whom 
we converse with daily, that is full of love and kindness to us, full of ten- 
derness, whose love we should take in, and consider, and have a wary, 
watchful regard to, and grieve with him if we oil'end him ? 

I cannot enlarge upon the work he hath done and is to do for us, which 
yet is proper to this occasion. I shall only instance in what, in the doctrinal 
part, I have been so large in, and in that which, Rom. viii. 11, 12, the 
apostle putteth this very obligation upon ; our being debtors to the Spirit. 
He had in that chapter spoken much and great things about the Spirit's 
indwelling in us, and the fruits thereof: and he spoke thus, ver. 11, ' If 
the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, he that 
raised Jesus from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by his 
Spirit that dwelleth in you. Christ's love was in dying, the Spirit's is 
shewn in his indwelling in us. His inference from thence is, ver. 12, 
' Therefore, brethren, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live after the flesh.' 
But that the greatness of his love and grace may appear unto us, and we 
may put a due value upon it, let us compare it with the love of Christ him- 
self in being incarnate, and dwelling in our nature for us. You account it 
infinite love in him to leave the bosom of his Father, to come down from 
heaven, and become one person with a man, to be made flesh, and so to 
be made less than his Father in that respect. Yea, and this love is the 
greater, inasmuch as he assumed this nature as clothed with all infirmities 
of flesh and blood, the likeness of sinful flesh, and dwelt among us, and 
endured such contradictions of sinners, as the apostle speaks. And this 
union was the foundation of all his work and satisfaction for us. And 
herein God commended his love, as Heb. ii. you have it set forth. An d 
yet set this grace of the Holy Ghost's indwelling in us by it, and it riseth 
up unto an equality ; and though it fall lower in some respects, yet exceed- 
ing that of Christ in others, the scales will be acknowledged even. 

It falls lower in this, that the union between him and us is not personal, 
as that of Christ's is with his human nature ; but yet it is as near it as 
possibly may be, for it is an immediate union of our persons to and with 
his person, so as to have an eternal right personal to each other, and ever- 
lastingly to dwell each in other. And it indeed was well for us we had not 
a personal union with the Spirit ; for our defilements (if remaining) would 
then have defiled and been imputed unto his person. 

In other things it is equal ; 

For, 1. Both are said to come alike down from heaven ; the Spirit (1 Pet. 
i. 12) as well as Christ. 

2. He indwells in us for ever, as was shewn. He is in us ; and shall be 
with us married as indivisibly without all divorce, as the Son of God and 
that human nature also are. Yea, and as Christ continued his union with 
the body in the grave, so those words (Piom. viii. 11), ' The Spirit of him 
that raised up Jesus from the dead shall also quicken jour mortal bodies, 
by his Spirit that dwelleth in you,' import, that the Spirit continueth his 
union and relation to the body (which, 1 Cor. vi. 19, is also called his 
temple) even within the grave, and fallen to dust. 


But, 3. In these things the love shewn by the Spirit in such his union 
with us doth exceed. 

(1.) That though indeed the Son of God dwelt and dwells thus intimately 
in a human nature, yet it is a nature made holy, harmless, separate from 
sin and sinners, Heb. vii. But this good Spirit's lot and part is to come 
at first into hearts full of all defilements, into rags of uncleanliness, into 
flesh that is and hath wholly corrupted itself. Of old this was made a 
wonder by Solomon ; ' Will God in very deed dwell on earth, in a house 
which I have built for him, whom the heaven and the earth cannot contain ?' 
2 Chron. vi. 18. But here is a wonder of wonders, that the holy God (as 
the Spirit is) should dwell in hearts so unholy and unclean, and make them 
his temples (as 1 Cor. vi. 19). 

(2.) Christ indeed dwelt among us, and conversed with sinful men, 
whereby he suffered daily such contradictions of sinners. But it was a 
contradiction merely from without, and yet this grated on his spirit (nothing 
more), insomuch as it is said he pleased not himself in the best of his com- 
pany, Rom. xv. 3. But the union of the Holy Ghost, and his indwelling 
in us, is in our sinful hearts ; so as often, where his indwelling is mentioned, 
it is inserted (Gal. iv. 6), ' He sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts.' 
2 Cor. i. 22, ' He hath given the earnest of his Spirit into our hearts.' John 
vii. 38 ; this spring of living water is said to be in the belly, environed 
about with mud. All which imports a nearer union than that of Christ 
within us ; to which this limitation is added, ' He dwells in our hearts by 
faith.' But of the Spirit it is said everywhere that he dwells in us. It is 
originally his title, 2 Tim. i. 14, to be styled, ' He that dwells within us.' 
Now the contradiction which he by reason of this near inhabitation endures 
must needs be much greater and quicker to his sense, from those he dwells 
thus within, and hath entered into, and hath undertaken such a conjunction 
withal, than that of outward converse, which Christ only endured. For if 
what Christ says in another case be true, what is from without should 
offend ; then how much more that which is from within, the person one 
dwells withal ? And in this respect he alone of all the three persons is said 
to be grieved, having taken on him the part of an intimate friend. A father 
(as God the Father) is offended, but a familiar friend is grieved. It argues 
a nearer striking home at the heart. And in this respect he hath had an 
hard task of it, and this from the beginning of the world. He hath been 
burdened, and felt the weight of the old world (Gen vi.), ' My Spirit shall 
not always strive with man therein.' And yet he relieves himself by 
bringing the flood upon them after an hundred and twenty years. But 
against these he thus indwells in, whom he regenerates, he hath no relief; 
for he hath eternally undertaken for them. 

And is it nothing, think you, to have his work continually spoiled ? 
Never to find the soul as he left it ? To have that heart he dwells in con- 
tinually resisting and contradicting of him ? To have that unspun in the 
night which he hath woven in the day ? To have made a good prayer in 
us, and that swept away, as if it were but a cobweb, by lust that riseth ? 
To have his greatest enemy, the devil, blaspheme him and his graces, in 
his own house, in his own hearing ? If Lot's righteous soul was vexed, or 
our own graces within us troubled ; then how much more is the author of 
all grace, dwelling in us, insomuch as he is weary of this world, and the 
course held in this respect ? 

And to that account I have sometimer in my thoughts cast that speech, 
Rev. xxii., where we find some outcries for Christ's coming, that he would 

ClIAr. VI. | IN < Hit SALVATION. 43 

come quickly. ' The Spirit says, Conic ' (speaking to Christ), as well as 
' the bride Bays, Come.' She, that she may enjoy her hushand; he, that 
he may he eased. He groans to he unburdened of this conflict with sinful 
hearts he dwells in (as our souls are said to do, 2 Cor. v.), as having so 
long borne the trouble and grief of this work, which till there is an end of 
all by Christ's coming, he is designed unto. 

2. There is another use of this doctrine, which I urge to nnregene- 
rate men. Well, God by his providence hath brought thee once more to 
the word, which the apostle calls the ministration of the Spirit. Now con- 
sider, though thou hast been never so empty, dry, and barren of goodness, 
and art now in thy rilthiness, thou mayest carry home the Spirit with thee, 
and therein thou art passive ; but if thou dost, it will cost thee something 
in his workings on thee ; he will work strangely on thy heart. Thou mayest 
now begin to be possessed of the richest gift God hath to bestow. Thou 
earnest to see fashions, a reed shaken with the wind, as John's hearers 
did ; but thou standest in the wind of the Spirit, and he may seize upon 
thee, and save thee ; for he comes upon men without preparation, and then 
works all. I shall open but two or three scriptures to this purpose. In 
Isa. xliv. 3, there is the promise of the Spirit (which in Gal. iii. is said to 
have been made to Abraham and his seed), ' I will pour water upon him 
that is thirsty, and floods upon the dry ground ;' which Isaiah himself in- 
terprets, ' I will pour my Spirit upon thy seed, and my blessing upon thine 
ofl'spring ; and they shall spring up ' (as herbs, namely) ' among the grass,' 
ttc. ' One shall say, I am the Lord's,' &c. And this scripture also did 
our Saviour Christ allude to in the promise of his Spirit to the woman of 
Samaria : John iv. 14, ' But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall 
give him shall never thirst ; but the water that I shall give him shall be in 
him a well of water springing up into eternal life.' He alludes also to the 
same scripture in what he says to his disciples : John vii. 37-39, ' If any 
man thirst, let him come to me, and drink. He that believeth on me, as 
the scripture hath said, 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 : for the Holy Ghost was not yet given ; because that Jesus was not 
yet glorified.' The promise in each refers to both places : and yet the 
occasion was differing, though of one and the same Spirit. If you observe 
the purport and occasion of the promise of the Spirit in the 4th of John, it 
was when our Saviour was treating with the woman of Samaria, a great 
sinner, ver. 18 ; utterly ignorant, ver. 10, 23 ; a flouter of him, ver. 15 ; 
and as yet (when Christ spake these words) purely in her natural estate. 
And therefore this promise of the Spirit here all acknowledge to be the 
Spirit of regeneration, to work conversion at the first ; to become, as at the 
first he doth, a well of water springing up to eternal life. 

Xow this was at first poured upon a dry ground, in respect to any such 
work ; utterly dry, utterly barren, that hath not so much as a desire or 
thirst after this Holy Spirit, to ask him, as she had not, ver. 10, ' II thou 
knewest the gift of God, and who it is that saith unto thee, Give me to 
drink, thou wouldst have asked of him, and he would have given thee living 
water.' And upon this ignorant, barren soul doth Christ pour out his 
Spirit whilst he is speaking with her ; and which was the strangeness of it, 
though poured from without, yet soaking into her, it began (as Christ pro- 
mised) to become a spring in her heart, which other water poured from with- 
out on earth doth never become, bubbling up all that which tended to eternal 
life. And the promise of the Spirit as regenerating at the first, and to tha 


end poured out on such souls as here, was part of Isaiah's scope. He had 
a further also, for it is pouring ' water upon dry ground,' causing herbs to 
come up where barrenness was (ver. 4), to the end that men that are Gen- 
tiles, and strangers to the commonwealth of Israel (as this Samaritan was) 
might ' call themselves by the name of Jacob, and subscribe unto the Lord, 
and surname themselves by the name of Israel,' ver. 5. And the first thing 
we see God doth (as Christ also in the 4th of John promiseth) to such sons, 
is to pour out his Spirit on them in that very condition, and he becomes a 
spring within them of all goodness, even then when there is not a drop 
afore, nor any preparation to it. And again the prophet Isaiah, prophesy- 
ing of times when Christ should be on earth, thus speaks, chap. xxxv. 
ver. 5, G, ' Then the eyes of the blind shall be opened, and the ears of the 
deaf shall be unstopped. Then shall the lame leap as an hart, and the 
tongue of the dumb sing.' Then followeth the very same promise, that ' in 
the wilderness waters should break out, aud streams in the desert, and 
the parched ground shall become a pool.' Which promise, as Christ inter- 
preted, so he also made it good, fulfilling of it in this Samaritan, the first 
fruits of Gentile converts ; and this he did whilst he was speaking it to 
her. Ezekiel speaks to the same purpose and effect (chap, xxxvii.), though 
under another allusion, of men not only dead, but consumed to bone, and 
those bones dry; and a wind came from God upon them, even when in 
this estate, and made them alive. And what is the moral of it ? The 
Spirit of God (whora Christ compares to the wind, John hi., and who, 
Acts ii., came as a rushing wind), the Spirit of the living God (as in 2 Cor. 
iii. 3) came upon these men, and made them alive, even when dead and 
dry bones. Thus it is said, ver. 14, ' I will put my Spirit in you, and ye 
shall five.' He puts his Spirit into us, not only pours him on us ere we 
have the least of life, who therefore must needs come on us, yea, into us 
when we are dead. He gets into us, and becomes a spring in our bellies, 
in the heart of this barren earth when it is dry. 

Use 3. Is it the Spirit of God who is the author of conversion ? Then 
ament and bewail the hardness of thy heart, which though it hath so often 
had good motions put into it by the Spirit (which motions, for aught thou 
knowest, are the beginnings of this work, and leaders unto repentance), yet 
it hath not followed them, but given a deaf ear unto them. 

1. Consider the heinousness of the sin. It is that which Stephen up- 
braided the Jews with : Acts vii. 51, ' Ye stiffnecked, who evermore resist 
the Holy Ghost.' It is the sin for which our Saviour chiefly wept over 
Jerusalem, Luke xiii. 34. Consider that it is to oppose the Holy Ghost in 
his own proper work and office, and in as much as in you lies to put him out 
of office. And though it be not always that sin against the Holy Ghost, 
which is unpardonable (for many have afterwards repented of this), yet it 
is a sin against the Holy Ghost. For as the Scripture, though it makes 
indeed but one o Amvg/tfr&s, ' that antichrist, the man of sin and son of 
perdition,' the pope, the greatest arch-heretic that ever was, or will be, yet 
every petty popeling and less notorious heretic is cm antichrist, ' for there 
be many antichrists now in the world ' (says the apostle of his times, before 
the great antichrist was risen). So it is in this case : though the Scripture 
makes but one sin against the Holy Ghost, xar i^oyj^, yet the resister of 
the least motion of the Spirit leading to repentance is a sinner against the 
Holy Ghost, and there be many such sinners. I appeal to many of you ; 
how often hath the Holy Ghost come and viewed you ? How often hath 
he come to your hearts when ve were alone, and even unto your bedside, 


beseeching you, and yo have put him off! And you may judge of the 
greatness of this sin, to resist the least good motion (which is a step to tho 
other), in that the Scripture makes the full act (or grosser act, as I ma 
it) of that sin to be, in iato genere in that kind, the greatest and the only unpar- 
donable one. Now we measure sins in the act they tend to ; as murder being 
a great sin, and the act thereof more heinous than of other sins, therefore 
thoughts of murder and revenge are worse than any other sinful thoughts. 
And if you will put this sin of resisting the motions of the Spirit into the 
balance of the sanctuary, and rightly weigh it with other ways of sinning, 
I dare affirm it, that the resisting the least good motion tending to conver- 
sion is greater than many of those grosser acts against the law of God. 
And these motions resisted do heighten and aggravate all our other sins com- 
mitted before and after them. For they tend to turn us from them by 
causing us to repent of all sins past, and preventing sins to come. More- 
over this sin is a sin against the gospel (for the gospel is the ministration 
of the Spirit, and so of these good motions of the Spirit), and sins against 
the gospel are greater than those against the law. And therefore (Heb. ii. 
23) the very neglecting the salvation of the gospel is made a crime deserv- 
ing a sorer punishment than any breach of the law. And how much sorer 
punishment does it deserve to despise it when it is brought home to us by 
the Holy Ghost, and by him set on upon our hearts '? If barely to hear 
the word, and not be moved by it, be a sin, and a heinous one, then to be 
moved by it and to neglect it is a greater ; for it is despising of the greater 
mercy, and it is against the Spirit of grace in the gospel. 

2. Consider the danger of this sin. You have seen that, for the guilt of 
it, it is above committing gross sins against the law. And the danger of it 
is answerable ; for sins against the law God threateneth but conditionally 
with damnation, if men believe not, and repent not ; so as that repentance 
coming between they may escape. But this God threateneth, yea, and 
punisheth with impenitency itself (and that is the damning sin) for God 
useth ordinarily to punish sins in their own coin, according to their nature 
and kind ; and this he punisheth with impenitency, because it resists the 
work of repentance : ' I would have purged thee ' (says God in the prophet, 
unto the people of Israel), ' but thou wouldst not.' When God would they 
would not, and therefore God never after would. And when God hath 
used means, and comes unto us to cleanse us, and we would not, he says 
(as it is, Rev. xxii. 11), ' He that is filthy, let him be filthy still' ; and so 
we shall be long enough, for all him. For at length God grows peremptory, 
and never makes offer more. God commonly gives such up unto irre- 
coverable hardness of heart and blindness of mind. And I appeal to their 
own consciences if they grow not harder after such resistings, as clay doth, 
the more the sun hath shone upon it, or as ice freezeth harder after it had 
begun to thaw. Consider but the reason of it, If a man sins against the 
law, he hath yet the court of the gospel to sue in, and so to obtain pardon ; 
as if a man be cast in one court, he hath a liberty to remove his suit from 
that court unto a higher ; but if he be condemned in the higher, then there 
is no going backward unto any lower court. So God hath given us two 
courts, that of the law and that of the gospel. Thou being an unclean or 
covetous person, or a drunkard, goeth to the law, and that condemns thee. 
Then the Spirit offers thee to remove thy suit to the highest court of the 
gospel, and upon faith and repentance to bring thee a pardon. Thou 
neglects this, and so the gospel itself presently condemns thee ; for there, 
' he that believes not is condemned already,' John iii. 18. And if mercy and 


the offers of it condemn thee, I know not what can save thee ; for that is 
the highest conrt, and go backward thou canst not. The work of the Spirit 
(as you heard) is the last act of man's salvation, and without it neither no 
evidence of thy election, nor redemption, are to be respected. And if thou 
run unto God's mercy (as that is the common shift, that God is merciful) 
or to Christ's redemption, in that he died for sinners, both these send thee 
to the Spirit. And the Spirit tells thee he hath offered salvation unto thee 
upon thy repenting many a time, and hath proffered to assist therein, and 
thou didst still refuse ; and how then canst thou expect salvation ? Ay, 
but thou wilt say, I hope the Spirit will offer again and again, and when I 
am on my deathbed, as well as now. I answer, 

1. That it is a great hazard, for ' the Spirit blows when and where he 
listeth ;' and, it may be, he will never move thee more. And, 

2. Consider whether thou hast any reason to expect this. For suppose 
thou shouldst have often, again and again, moved a Mend of thine in a 
matter which concerns himself, and which thou hast most * benefit by, only 
out of love, thou hast thus moved him in it, and he still gives thee a con- 
trary or froward answer, and goes on doing the contrary, wouldst not thou 
at last resolve, that seeing thou hast so often moved him in vain, hereafter 
thou wilt never speak of it to him more ? This is the case between the 
Spirit and thee. He hath often moved thee in a matter that concerns thine 
eternal wealth or wo, even to repent, but thou givest him a churlish answer, 
and goest still on in thine impenitency ; how then canst thou expect he should 
ever move thee again ? God comes at length to say of thee, as of those in 
Hosea vi. 4, who had had many good motions, which like the dew were 
dried up, and reformations which like a cloud passed away, ' Ephraim, 
what shall I do unto thee ? Judah, what shall I do unto thee ? For 
your goodness is as a morning cloud ; and as the early dew it goeth away.' 

3. Yet seeing this is thy plea, that thou hopest the Holy Ghost will move 
thee again, I charge thee, as thou tenderest thine own salvation, if that now 
or hereafter he doth move thee, to take the opportunity of time and tide. 
If by meditation, reading, or prayer, any sparks be kindled in thee, blow 
them up ; let those thoughts rest on thee ; welcome them, hug them, as 
the best guests that ever came to lodge in thine heart. Shall an ambassador 
extraordinary be sent from the King of heaven unto thee with a message, 
and wilt thou not give him audience, but put him off from day to day, and 
tell him (as Felix did Paul) thou wilt hear him another time ? The best 
men are but green wood, on which, though fire do take hold, it is subject 
to die again ; and therefore, if thou hast but a few sparks, leave them not 
till they have taken hold, nor then till they are put into a flame. And above 
all things, take heed of quenching them by carnal mirth, or company, or 
recreations, as men use to do. 

* Qu. ' no ' ?— Ed. 



How the Holy Ghost is the author of r s t /m ia r tt t t o n, or the first application of 
salvation to us, in a more peculiar manner, comparatively to the other two 

Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy 
he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost ; 
which he shed on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Saviour. — Titus 

( Regeneration, you see, is attributed to the Spirit as the author. It is 
termed the ' renewing of the Holy Ghost ' and likewise the ' shedding forth 
the Holy Ghost ' is magnified as the rich gift and blessing of the New 

I have in a former discourse shewn how all the three persons have shared 
and distributed the whole work of our salvation amongst them, unto three 
several parts. 1. Election is appropriated to the Father. 2. Redemption 
to the Son. 3. Application of both to the Holy Ghost ; who accordingly 
doth bear several offices suited to these three works. 

That which now I have to do, is more particularly to demonstrate both 
the or; and dion of this point of great moment ; both that and why this last 
part of salvation, viz., application, and so principally this of regeneration, 
is attributed to the Holy Ghost. 

I. I shall produce scriptures to demonstrate this point. 

1. The first Scripture is John iii. 5, ' Except a man be born of the Spirit, 
he cannot enter into the kingdom of God,' This scripture shews not only 
the necessity of being born again, but withal that it must be the Spirit, who 
must do it, or it will not be done. ' For no man can so much as say, Jesus 
is the Lord, but by the Holy Spirit,'' 1 Cor. xii. 3. 

2. The near kindred and dependence the new creature hath with and^/ 
upon the Spirit, as the child begotten hath of and with its properj^thjr, 7<*^ht4 
doth evidence the same truth. 

(1.) The new creature is in the same third of John, ver. 6, styled spirit 
(as elsewhere it is called a spiritual man, 1 Cor. ii.), ' That which is born -Yc 
of the Spirit is spirit.' It is therefore professedly baptized into the same 
name, because the father of this new birth and baptism is the Spirit. With ^ — / 
men the begotten bears the name of the most immediate parent ; and so in 
this case, though this work of the Spirit be in common termed the divine^ ^^vi^ 
nature (2 Peter i. 4 ) because it is the image of the Godhead, of which all "^5^ 
three persons are partakers, yet to shew that in a more peculiar manner it 
is the child of the Spirit, it is called spirit. 

(2.) For the very same reason this Spirit of God, the author, relatively 
bears the name of Holy in the New Testament, where it is (though not first) 
yet more frequently used as his special title, to be called ' The Holy Ghost,' 
as our old English hath rendered it to us. Is not the Father holy, and 
the Son holy, and both equally holy with this Holy Spirit ? Yes, essentially 
and personally also in themselves ; ' Holy, holy, holy,' they are all pro- 
claimed, Isa. vi. How came these other two to bear it, that he, the third 
person, should have the peculiar style of Holy? It is not neither in a 
peculiar, neither in a personal or essential respect, but relatively unto that 


which is his proper and peculiar work, because he sanctifies and makes us 
holy, and so merits that name ; as Christ doth of our Sari our, and the 
Father of God the Father and Maker. And here let me return to the 
necessity of this person's making us holy. As it is necessary for Christ to 
redeem us, there is an absolute necessity that wo all be a sanctified holy 
sacrifice offered up to God, if we look to be saved, or otherwise we must 
be made a sacrifice of his wrath, as Christ hath told us, Mark ix. 49. Where 
he having threatened, if lust be not killed, men shall be cast into the fire 
that is unquenchable (ver. 47, 48), he adds this as a reason, that every man 
is to be a sacrifice to God one way or other. According to the old law 
some sacrifices were consumed with fire, as the burnt-offerings ; some 
seasoned with salt, to sink up the corrupt moisture in them, Lev. ii. 13. 
One sort of these sacrifices all men must become ; if not sanctified by the 
Spirit, so as to have salt in them, then with hell-fire, which also is a sacri- 
fice to God. Now Christ for our redemption offered up himself a sacrifice 
to God, for a sweet smelling savour, Eph. v. 2 ; and it was necessary he 
should be so. And to that end he sacrificed himself, as in his sacrificial 
prayer he speaks, John xvii. 19. And it is as necessary, if we be saved, 
that our persons be offered up unto God as a sacrifice also, Rom. xii. 1, 
even a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God. It was necessary, 
therefore, we should have a sanctifier of us to be an offering unto God, 
as well as a redeemer, that offered up himself for us. And who is that ? 
You are directed to him in Rom. xv., ' This is the issue of my ministry,' 
(says Paul, speaking of his converting the nations, ver. 18, 19) ' that the 
Gentiles ' (being converted) ' might be an offering acceptable, being sancti- 
fied by the Holy Ghost.' Else never to be acceptable to God. Christ was 
sanctified immediately by himself, by the personal union with the Son of 
God — ' I sanctify myself ' — even as he also ' offered up himself by the eternal 
Spirit,' or Godhead dwelling in him, Heb. ix. ; but we by the Holy Ghost. 
And as in that other speech, ' That which is born of the Spirit is spirit,' 
the new creature bears his name ; so here, he is called the Holy Spirit, or 
bears the name of holy, because the sanctifier of us : ' Being sanctified by 
the Holy Ghost.' 

3. The work of conversion, not only in the whole, but in every part 
thereof, is attributed to him, John xvi. 8, 9, 10. It is (as I hinted 'afore, 
and shall shew hereafter) divided into three parts. 1. Conviction of sin. 
2. Of righteousness for justification. 3. Of judgment, holiness, and refor- 
mation ; and the Spirit is there made the author of these three. And 
according to this division of the parts thereof, he hath titles also given him, 
as in relation to his immediate working of these three. 

(1.) He condescends to be termed ' the Spirit of bondage ;' I say, he con- 
descends but to the work and name ; for otherwise, and in himself, he is 
' the free Spirit,' (Ps. Ii. 11, 12), and delights in comforting us, not in 
grieving us. And he is therefore also called ' the Comforter ;' but yet to 
affect our salvation, and the effectual application of it to us, he (contrary 
to his nature) becomes our jailor, takes the keys of death and damnation 
into his custody, and shuts up our spirits under the law, as it is a school- 
master to Christ, rattles the chains, lets us see the sin and punishment we 
deserve. He convinceth of sin, John xvi., and becomes a ' Spirit of bond- 
age,' Rom. viii. 15. 

(2.) But then, secondly, in regard of the revealing God's love to us, and 
Christ and his righteousness, by whom we are adopted, and by which justi- 
fied, he is called in the same place ' the Spirit of adoption,' « the Spirit of 

Chap. V1I.J in our salvation. 49 

faith,' as somo interpret, 2 Cor. iv. 13. Barnabas was ' full of the Holy 
Ghost, and of faith,' Acts xi. 24. 

(3.) In regard of sanctifying us, and convincing of judgment, he is in the 
Old Testament enstyled the ' Spirit of judgment,' Isa. iv. 4, in respect of 
washing away the filth of sin : ' When the Lord shall have washed away 
the filth of Zion, by the Spirit of judgment,' &c. And in the New he is 
entitled ' the Spirit of grace :' Hob. x. 29 ' Have done despite to the Spirit 
of grace,' that is, to him as going about to work grace and holiness in the 
heart. The sin against the Holy Ghost, which is there described, not being 
against the person of the Spirit, so much as against him in his workings ; 
and that in his working grace and sanctifying, as in the words afore you 
have it. And as to grace in the general, as he is the author of every parti- 
cular grace, so in the head himself, therefore much more in the members. 
The prophet, speaking of the Messiah in Isa. xi. 1, ' The Spirit of the 
Lord shall rest upon him,' and shall be in him, in respect of his effects upon 
him, ' the Spirit of wisdom and understanding, the Spirit of knowledge, and 
of the fear of the Lord.' There is the like reason he should be denomi- 
nated from every other grace. He is in one chapter, John xiv., termed 
1 The Spirit of truth,' ver. 17, who reveals all truth to the understanding ; 
1 The Holy Spirit,' who sanctifies the will, the chief subject of holiness; ' The 
Comforter,' who fills the heart with joy and peace in believing; which is 
therefore usually styled 'joy in the Holy Ghost,' in multitudes of places; 
that phrase speaking him not so much the object of it (which is rather 
Christ, 1 Peter i. 8, ' In whom believing, ye rejoice with joy unspeakable 
and glorious;' and God, Rom. v. 11) as the author of it: Rom. xv. 13, 
' Now the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that ye 
may abound in hope, through the power of the Holy Ghost.' 

II. I shall now, secondly, give the reasons why this work is committed 
to him, and is his lot. These reasons are not of logical demonstration, but 
harmonious, by comparing spiritual things with spiritual, and by the suiting 
of one thing with another, in which the strength of divine reason lies ; for 
divinity is a wisdom, not an art. 

1. This operation of the Spirit is in a correspondency to the creation of 
the first man, who was a type of what was to come : Job xxxiii. 4, ' The 
Spirit of God hath made me, and the breath of the Almighty hath given me 
life.' It is evident he speaks of the new creation, in allusion to the old: 
ver. 1-3, ' My word shall be of the uprightness of my heart, and my lips 
shall utter knowledge thereby ; ' and then adds, ' The Spirit of God hath 
made me,' that is, hath given me a sincere heart, an illuminated mind, put 
the words of life into me. To have spoken of his first creation only, he 
being a man fallen from it, had been a poor argument to persuade Job of 
the truth of his heart, and the truths he went about to utter. And yet, 
too, he as evidently alludes to the first creation : Gen. ii. 7, ' The Lord 
formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the 
breath of life, and man became a living soul.' Now, in this new creation, 
we being dead in sins and trespasses, it is the Spirit of God that giveth 
life, 2 Cor. iii. 6 ; who, as in respect of giving us this new life, is called 
' the Spirit of the living God,' ver. 3 ; and in the Old Testament, Ezek. 
xxxvii. 13, 14, ' I will bring you out of your graves, I will put my Spirit 
in you, and you shall live,' which you find in the 36th chapter, ver. 27. 
And it is observable that the first visible giving the Holy Ghost, which 
was after Christ's resurrection, to enable them to be ' ministers, not of the 
letter, but of the Spirit,' which should give life to them, and to others by 



them, was the ceremony of breathing on them : ' And he said, Receive the 
Holy Ghost,' John xx. 22. We had his blood that ran in his veins first, 
and it is efficacious to wash away the guilt of sin. We have his breath 
next, which comes out of the inwards of him, which conveys his Spirit, 
which conveys himself into our inwards, as it is in the prophet, and gives us 
life. And as life comes with the breath of God breathed at first, and goes 
away with it, so doth spiritual life upon the going or coming of the Holy 
Ghost upon us. 

2. It is the Spirit that converts and regenerates us, and forms the new 
creature in us, in a conformity to our head Christ. The Holy Ghost was, 
1. The immediate former of the human nature of Christ in the womb ; 2. 
The uniter of that nature to the Son of God ; 3. The sanctifier thereof, with 
all graces dwelling therein above all measure. 

(1.) He was the former of the human nature of Christ in the womb: 
Mat. i. 18, ' She was found with child of the Holy Ghost;' and ver. 20, 
' that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost ; ' which was in his 
forming and fitting that matter into a man, which the prolific virtue useth 
to do. 

(2.) He was the uniter of it to the divine, and sanctifier of it with 
all graces, both which you have expressed in another place : Luke i. 35, 
' And the angel answered and said to her, The Holy Ghost shall come upon 
thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee : therefore also 
that holy thing that shall be bom of thee shall be called the Son of God.' 
Now, we being to be made as comfonnable to Christ as is possible, it was 
correspondent that the same person who was designed to form Christ's 
body for the Godhead to dwell in all its fulness should form Christ in us, 
that God and Christ may dwell in us : 1 Cor. iii. 16, ' Know ye not that 
ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you ? ' 
That same person that made that happy match, the personal union be- 
tween Christ's human nature and the divine, the same person makes the 
union between Christ and our souls ; and so we become one spirit with the 
Lord, 1 Cor. vi. 17. The same person that made the man Christ partaker 
of the divine nature maketh us also. There is a higher correspondency yet. 
The Holy Ghost is vinculum Trinitatis, the union of the Father and the Son, 
as proceeding from both by way of love ; and who so meet to be the union 
of God and man in Christ, of Christ and men in us, as he that was the bond 
of union among themselves ? 

(3.) In respect of sanctifying that human nature of Christ, it was the 
Holy Ghost who made him Christ, that anointed him with himself, and all 
his graces : Isa. xi. 2, ' The Spirit of the Lord shall rest upon him, the 
Spirit of knowledge and the fear of the Lord.' The graces of Christ, as 
man, are attributed to this Spirit, as the immediate author of them ; for 
although the Son of God dwelt personally in the human nature, and so 
advanced that nature above the ordinary rank of creatures, and raised it 
up to that dignity and worth, yet all his habitual graces, which even his 
soul was full of, were from the Holy Ghost. The Holy Spirit is therefore 
said to be ' given him without measure.' And this inhabitation of the 
Holv Ghost did in some sense and degree concur to constitute him Christ, 
which, as you know, is the anointed one of God : Acts iv. 27, ' Thy holy 
child Jesus, whom thou hast anointed.' Anointed with what ? Acts x. 
38, ' God anointed Jesus with the Holy Ghost.' Now, then, if the Spirit 
made him Christ, and concurred in this respect to make him the anointed 
of God, much more is it he that makes us Christians. 

Chap. VllL] in our salvation. 51 

3. Consider what this application of salvation unto us is. It is the reve- 
lation of the mind and love of God and Christ unto us, and the things of 
both. He that doth this must ' take of mine,' says Christ ; and in doing 
so he must take of my Father's also, for all the Father hath or doth is 
Christ's. You have both in one place : John xvi. 14, 15, ' He shall glorify 
me : for he shall receive of mine, and shew it to you. All things that the 
Father hath are mine.' Great persons woo not by themselves, but employ 
ambassadors and ministers of state £ and so doth Christ. Now, who should 
do this but the Spirit, who knows the heart and mind of God ? 1 Cor. 
ii., ' We have received the Spirit who is of God, that we might know the 
things that are freely given us of God ; ' that is, by our having him from 
God, who knows all that is in God, which is the reason there given ; 
ver. 10, ' God hath revealed them to us by his Spirit : for the Spirit 
searchoth all things, yea, the deep things of God ; ' which he confirms and 
illustrates by a similitude fetched from our own bosoms : ver. 11, ' For 
what man,' that is, what other man, ' knows the things of a man ' (that are 
in his own breast), ' save the spirit of a man that is in him ? Even so the 
things of God knows no man,' or angel, ' but the Spirit of God ; ' who 
being the Spirit of counsel (Isa. xi. 2) even to Christ himself, helped him 
to all God's secrets ; and he also being privy and overhearing (as John 
xvi. 13), all that the Father and Christ have intended to us, and spoken 
about us, was only fit to reveal them unto us. And thus by him we come 
to have the very mind of God and Christ. The grace of Christ, and the 
love of God the Father, are revealed to us by the communion of the Holy 
Ghost, 2 Cor. xiii. 14. 


How the Holy Ghost is the gift of God the Father to us, in and by Jesus 
Christ. — That this inestimable gift is bestowed freely, by the 'pure mercy, 
grace, and love of God. 

Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy 
he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy 
Ghost; which he shed on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Saviour. 
—Tit. III. 5, 6. 

We have seen, in a short but comprehensive view, the operations of the 
Holy Ghost in the great work of our salvation. The next prospect of him 
is, as he is the gift of God, conferred on us for this end and purpose. To 
open this to our sight, I offer these following considerations. 

1. That it is God the Father who is the donor, or the bestower of him 
on us. This is plainly expressed by the words of the text, which declares 
that he sheds the Spirit on us. 2. This gift of the Spirit is in and through 
Jesus Christ, our Saviour and mediator. 3. This gift of the Spirit is be- 
stowed, not according to the covenant of works, but of grace and free love. 
For those words, ' not according to works,' and the other words of the 
text, which speak of the appearance of the love and kindness of God, 
refer as well to this rich shedding forth the Holy Ghost upon us as unto 
saving us through regeneration, and renewing us. 4. The condition of the 
persons to whom he is given is altogether unworthy. When we were in 
our disobedience, serving our lusts, the Holy Ghost was poured out, and 
renewed us. 


1. The donor or bestower of the Holy Ghost is God the Father through 
Christ. As the Father is the original of the persons in the Trinity, so of 
this great gift. Therefore Christ (John xv. 26) when he speaks of ' send- 
ing the Spirit from the Father,' adds, as the reason why he should be sent 
from the Father, that ' he proceeds from the Father' (his subsistence doth), 
naming him as the fountain both of himself and the Spirit also. He is 
termed the Spirit of God, roD Qsov, 1 Cor. ii. 11, in the same sense that 
we say the spirit of a man (as in the same verse) ; for as God is a Spirit, 
Isa. xlviii. 16, ' The Lord God and his Spirit,' says the prophet there; but 
the apostle further adds, ver. 12, the Spirit,Jyfc.7-oi/ Qiou, who personally is 
from. God, whom therefore we have and receive from God: 1 Cor. vi. 19, 
'The Holy Ghost which we have,' airo Qeou. This gift is therefore espe- 
cially attributed to the Father, and termed by Christ ' the promise of the 
Father,' Acts iv., Luke xxiv. 49, ' the Spirit of the Father,' Mat. x. 20, 
from whom Christ, as God-man, received the Spirit first. The Holy Ghost 
was sent down by the Father upon Christ as a dove in his baptism : ' God 
anointed Jesus with the Holy Ghost,' Acts x. 3S. And when Christ ascended 
into heaven he received him from the Father, Acts ii. 33, and so he shed 
him forth on us. And therefore Christ also, as mediator, was to pray the 
Father to give the Spirit, John xiv. 16 : 'I will pray the Father, and he 
shall give you another Comforter,' &c. 

Yet so as, 2dly, even the Father himself sends him not, but in and 
through Christ : John xiv. 26, ' The Holy Ghost, whom the Father will 
send in my name.' ' Through Christ our Saviour,' says the apostle, Tit. 
iii. 6. Which imports not barely the Son's concurrence, as second per- 
son, in sending him as well as the Father, even as his person proceeded 
from both, (as John xv. 26, ' whom I will send unto you') ; but further, 
that Christ, as a redeemer, had a virtual meritorious influence or hand 
herein ; so as for his sake, and through his purchase and intercession, the 
Father sends him. Christ purchased not only all the graces of the Spirit 
for us, but the Spirit himself (whom we had forfeited) to dwell in us. We 
have an express scripture, Gal. iii. 13, 14, ' Christ hath redeemed us from 
the curse of the law, being made a curse for us : for it is written, Cursed 
is every one that hangeth on a tree : That the blessing of Abraham might 
come on the Gentiles through Jesus Christ ; that we may receive the pro- 
mise of the Spirit through faith.' Where there are two ends adequately 
and alike made of Christ's being made a curse for us: 1. That we might 
receive the blessing of Abraham ; 2. That we might receive the promise of 
the Spirit. And, forasmuch as the gift of the Spirit comes under a pro- 
mise, as well as other blessings, it must needs come under the purchase of 
Christ's blood, which confirmed all the promises ; and this, as all the rest 
of the promises are, ' yea and amen in him.' And to this end it is observ- 
able, that he breathed not the Spirit until after his resurrection ; but then 
he did, John xx. 22, ' And when he had said this, he breathed on them, 
and saith unto them, Receive ye the Holy Ghost.' He had not shed his 
blood until now, and therefore breathed not the Holy Ghost until now. But 
Christ having died, and having, as the Lamb slain, purchased the Spirit, 
and being ascended up to the throne of God, he, as the Lamb, now sheds 
forth the Spirit : John vii. 38, 39, ' He that believeth on me, as the scrip- 
ture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water. But this 
spake he of the Spirit, which they that believe on him should receive ; for 
the Holy Ghost was not yet given, because Jesus was not yet glorified.' 
He compares the Spirit, as communicated to us, to a spring of living water. 


But not as then broke forth, as afterwards it should, because Christ had 
not died, and so entered into glory. Now compare with it Rev. xxii. 1 : 
• And he shewed rue a pure river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceed- 
ing out of the throne of God and of tho Lamb.' This water of life issues, 
you see, from tho throne of tho Lamb, who in the 5th chap., ver. G, 
appeared at tho throne of God as the Lamb slain, and redeeming us with 
his blood, and as such doth shed forth tho Spirit upon us ; and is even there 
also said to have all the fulness of the Spirit on him, ' who hath the seven 
Spirits ;' that is, tho Holy Ghost in all the varieties of his gifts and graces, 
called seven fromj^erfectiouj. For that tho seven Spirits are taken metony- 
mically for the Holy Ghost, is evident by chap, i., ver. 4 : 'John to the 
seven churches of Asia : Grace be unto you, and peace, from him which is, 
and which was, and which is to come ; and from tho seven Spirits which 
are before his throne.' Hence also when we receive the cup in the Lord's 
supper, which is termed the communion of Christ's blood, 1 Cor. x., 
we are yet said to ' drink into one Spirit ;' for that blood is vehiculum Spi- 
ritus, the Spirit runs in and with this blood. We therefore know whom we 
are beholden unto for the Spirit ; and whom to go unto for the Spirit, even 
to the Father, and to Christ, and to his blood ; and to. the Father through 
Christ, who gives commission to the Spirit to work such and such mea- 
sures of grace, at such times to fall upon us, and at such and such times 
to withdraw. 

Hence, 3dly, the Spirit is given us from m£ie_graee and love, and not 
according to works ; so in the text those words,. ' who not according to 
works, but mercy,' &c, refer as well to this shedding forth the Holy Ghost, 
as to his saving us by regeneration. You may therefore observe, 2 Cor. 
xiii. 14, that the grace of the Lord Jesus, and the love of God the Father, 
are put before communion of the Holy Ghost, as that which proceeds from 
both. ' The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the 
communion of the Holy Ghost, be with you all. Amen.' Therefore, in 
scriptures, both the law, the preaching of it, and the works of it, are in 
express words excluded and shut out from having any influence to convey 
the Spirit to us, that we may never so much as think to obtain the Spirit 
thereby : Jer. xxxi. 32, 'I will make a new covenant, not according to the 
covenant I made with their fathers ; but this shall be my covenant, I will 
write my law in their inward parts.' Which, compared with Ezek. xxxvi. 
26, 27, is renewed with this addition, ' I will give you a new heart, and 
put my Spirit within you.' And you may compare with both, 2 Cor. iii. 3 : 
1 Ye are manifestly declared to be the epistle of Christ, ministered by us, 
written not with ink, but with the Spirit of the living God ; not in tables 
of stone, but in fleshly tables of the heart ;' which clears both. Yea, so far 
forth as they in the Old Testament had the Spirit (as they had, Neh. 
ix. 20, ' Thou gavest them thy good Spirit to instruct them ;' and Hag. 
ii. 5, ' According to the word I covenanted with you when ye came out of 
Egypt, so my Spirit remaineth with you') ; so much gospel was even then 
mingled with it, and running in the veins of it. It was fcedus mixtum, and 
so in the virtue thereof the Spirit was (though in a lesser measureygiven. 
Therefore, when the gospel came to take place, then the preaching of the 
law, or ceremonies of it, did not convey the Spirit : to shew that it was 
purely upon the covenant of grace that the Spirit is given, 2 Cor. iii. 6-8, 
' Who also hath made us able ministers of the New Testament, not of the 
letter, but of the Spirit : for the letter killeth, but the Spirit giveth life. 
But if the ministration of death, written and engraven in stone, was glo- 


rious, so that the children of Israel could not stedfastly behold the face of 
Moses for the glory of his countenance, which glory was to be done away, 
how shall not the ministration of the Spirit be rather glorious ?' You see 
that the old covenant is the ministration of the letter, and of death ; and 
the New Testament, in exclusion of that Old, hath alone obtained this more 
excellent name, ' the ministration of the Spirit.' 

As not the preaching of the law gave the Spirit, so, nor can any works 
of the law obtain the Spirit at God's hands. The text is as express for 
this as for the other : Gal. iii. 2, ' This only would I learn of you, Received 
ye the Spirit by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith ?' Paul 
useth that as argume'ntwn palmarium against the law, as alone sufficient 
evidence. ' This one thing' (says he) ' I would leam of you,' and let that 
decide it, ' Received ye the Spirit by the works of the law, or by the hear- 
ing of faith ?' By Spirit he here means the Spirit of regeneration and 
sanctification ; for, ver. 5, he speaks of extraordinary gifts afterwards, and 
ver. 2, he speaks of that receiving which was general to all believing Gala- 
tians, even common to all saints, to whose universal experience he appeals, 
if ever any one of them had received him upon their doing. Now extraor- 
dinary gifts were not common to all saints, no, not in those days. And by 
' the hearing of faith,' he means the doctrine of faith, the gospel ; and ver 
14-17, he asserts the Spirit to be given freely by the covenant of grace, 
which God afore the law did establish with Abraham, and in him together 
with Isaac (as the type) with Christ : Gal. iii. 14-17, ' That the blessing of 
Abraham might come on the Gentiles through Jesus Christ ; that we might 
receive the promise of the Spirit through faith. Brethren, I speak after 
the manner of men : Though it be but a man's covenant, yet if it be con- 
firmed, no man disannulleth or addeth thereto. Now to Abraham and his 
seed we»e the promises made. He saith not, And to seeds, as of many ; 
but as of one, And to thy seed, which is Christ. And this I say, that the 
covenant, which was confirmed before of God in Christ, the law, which was 
four hundred and thirty years after, cannot disannul, that it sbould makf 
the promise of none effect.' Yea (to end this), he makes it an evidence of 
not being under the law, if a man hath received the Spirit, and be led by 
him : Gal. v. 18, ' But if ye be led by the Spirit, ye are not under the 
law.' And for this also it is, that he is called ' the Spirit of grace,' Heb. 
x. 29, because given freely. He is ' the gift of grace,' Eph. iii. 7, and so 
given upon the terms of the covenant of grace. 

Hence, from both these, appears the difference between Adam's having 
the Spirit in that estate of holiness, and the saints under the state of 
grace. Adam had the Spirit as well as we, and the Holy Ghost was at 
the making of him, and wrote the image of God upon his heart : for where 
holiness was, we may be sure the Spirit was too. The Holy Ghost was at 
that consultation, — ' Let us make man,' — and one of the us spoken unto. 
Yea, and that Spirit that ' moved upon the waters,' who also is sent forth 
to ' renew the face of the earth' (Ps. civ.), the same Spirit was in Adam's 
heart to assist his graces, and cause them to flow and bring forth, and to 
move him to live according to those principles of life given him. But there 
is this difference between that his having the Spirit, and ours, apparent 
from what hath already been said. 

1. That he concurred with Adam, merely as the third person, who 
joined in all works "and so upon no further account than as he concurred 
in. assisting all creatures else in their kind, to cause the earth to bring forth 
fruits according to then: kind ; and, indeed, he must necessarily have a 

Chap. VIII.] in our salvation. .")."> 

hand in all works of creation and providence. Whereas we have the 
Spirit upon Christ's account, in his name, purchased by him, as whom he 
had first received, also purchased as the head of his church. And there- 
fore it is ordinary in Scripture to term this Spirit as now dwelling in us, 

' the Spirit of Christ,' Roin. viii. 9 ; ' the Spirit of the Son,' Gal. iv. (I. 

And, 2. Hence Adam retained the Spirit according to the tenor of the 
cojenant of works (which is hut that equal law of creation between God and 
the creature), whereby he held a continuance of the privileges given him at 
the creation, even as he did life in God's sight, upon works of obedience : 
*^b this and live.' 

And as by one act of disobedience he forfeited life (' Cursed is he that 
continueth not in all things'), and so in like manner the Spirit was forfeit- 
able by him upon the same terms. Even as in a man that comes from 
Adam, one mortal stab causeth the soul to depart, so here, one act of sin- 
ning caused the soul* to depart ; for the bond of the union ceased. But 
as it would not be so in a man risen from the dead, and by the power of 
the second Adam, made a quickening Spirit ; no wounds would be mortal 
to such an one ; so here the gift of the Spirit to us is by promise, as Gal. 
iii. 14-17, the apostle argues. The gift of the Spirit, to a truly converted 
soul, is an absolute gift, and not upon conditions on our parts, but to 
work and maintain in us what God requires of us. The gift of the Spirit 
is not founded upon qualifications in us, to continue so long as we preserve 
grace in our souls, and do not sin it away. I will give you my Spirit to 
preserve you, and prevent your departing from me, Ezek. xxxvi. 26, 27. 
'I will give you a new heart,' but you would soon make it an old one, as bad 
as ever ; to prevent this, it follows, ' And I will put my Spirit within you, 
and cause you to walk in my statutes, and ye shall keep my judgments, 
and do them.' And so it is said in Jer. xxxii. 40, ' Ye shall not depart 
from me.' He comes by virtue of election on us, as he did on Christ, Isa. 
xlii. 1, ' Behold my elect in whom my soul delights, I have put my Spirit 
upon him.' Gal. iv. 6, ' Because ye are sons' (by election, namely, as it 
is said, Eph. i. 5, God ' having predestinated us to the adoption of children'), 
• God hath sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts.' And Mat. 
x. 20, ' The Spirit of your Father is in you ;' that is, God having taken on 
him the relation of your Father, thereupon bestoweth his Spirit on you. 
And therefore it is that so few of many that hear the same sermons receive 
the Holy Ghost ; for he comes on men by the grace of election, and so the 
Spirit picks and chooses (as God hath done), and rests on this soul, and 
not on that ; and so (as Isaiah says, Isa. xxvii. 12) they are gathered one 
by one. It goes as it were by lot, as it is (Acts viii. 21), spoken to Simon 
Magus, in relation to the Holy Ghost, v. 19. It hath the appearance of 
chance, because this man is taken, and not that ; when yet it is the eternal 
good pleasure of God that puts the difference. And the Spirit, that knows 
God's mind, seizeth on men accordingly ; and is said to be as the wind, 
that ' blows where it lists,' which is spoken of regeneration, John iii. 8. 

Hence it is that he is given to us for ever, and not to depart from us ; 
the reason is, because his person is given without conditions, and to work 
all conditions, he is so in us as to be with us for ever ; John xiv. 16, 17, 
' I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he 
may abide with you for ever : even the Spirit of truth, whom the world 
cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him ; but ye 
know him, for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you.' He came in 
* Qu. ' Spirit' ?— Ed. 


Christ the head, to make his abode in him : John i. 33, ' And I knew him 
not : but he that sent me to baptize with water, the same said unto me, 
Upon whom thou shalt see the Spirit descending, and remaining on him, 
the same is he which baptizeth with the Holy Ghost.' Which was a ful- 
filling of that piece of the prophecy, Isa. xi. 2, ' The Spirit of the Lord 
shall rest upon him.' To which Peter alludes, speaking also of us, 1 Peter 
iv. 14, ' The Spirit of God resteth on you ;' and to signify this, when visibly 
he came upon the apostles, Acts ii. 3, ' it sat upon each of them.' Christ's 
abode among us is compared to the dwelling in a tabernacle : John xiv., 
esxrjvutnv, ' He dwelt as in a tabernacle amongst us,' for he soon removed to 
heaven. But the Spirit dwells in us as in the temple, which was, instead 
of that moveable habitation, a more fixed settled abode : 1 Cor. vi. 19, 'Ye 
are the temple of the Holy Ghost.' I go and come, says Christ, John xiv. 
18, 19, but he shall be with you, and in you, v. 17, for ever. And there- 
fore he is not only given as the earnest of our inheritance (Eph. i. 14, and 
2 Cor. v. 5), a certain pawn that we shall have heaven ; but he becomes 
also from that time a spring in us never to be dammed up, a living foun- 
tain of water, springing up into eternal life, as Christ himself speaks, com- 
paring John iv. 14 with John vii. 38, 39. Now we do not say the spring 
shall continue whilst water is in the stream ; but water shall continue in 
the stream, and bubble up whilst there is a spring. If indeed the spring 
could fail, the waters might fail. Now the Holy Ghost is given to become 
a perpetual spring, both of grace and glory. And accordingly also, 1 Peter 
i. 23, the Holy Ghost is said to be ' the incorruptible seed, of which we 
are begotten,' which some have understood to be meant of the word ; but 
that is put in besides, as the instrumental cause, in the words following, 
' by the word of God.' Nor is it the new creature which is there meant, 
for that is the thing begotten in us. But the principal cause of whom we 
are begotten is the Holy Spirit, John iii. 6, ' That which is begotten of 
the Spirit.' Now he is called the ' incorruptible seed,' because he is cast 
into the soul with the word, as the prolific virtue in the word ; which is 
the seed materially, but the Spirit virtually. And this also shews the dif- 
ference between this giving the Spirit by virtue of election, and that com- 
munication of him to temporary believers that fall away, who are said, 
Heb. vi., to be ' partakers of the Holy Ghost; ' as Saul — ' The Spirit of the 
Lord came on Saul,' 1 Sam. x. 10, — but so as to depart away again, 
1 Sam. xvi. 14 ; thus on Balaam he did, Num. xxiv. 2, 2. and opened his 
eyes. The fundamental difference lies in the differing terms of the gift of 
the Spirit,, insinuated here in the text : that many receive the Spirit, not 
from God as a Father, by virtue of election, or through Christ as a Saviour ; 
they receive not, as children, the Spirit of God as from a Father ; as Rom. 
viii. 14, 15 ; as also Mat. x. 20 ; and as Christ's speech also (in John 
14th and loth chapters, ' I will pray tbe Father,' &c), doth import; but 
they receive him from God out of dominion and sovereignty, and from 
Christ as a Lord, who hath brought* even wicked men to serve him, 2 Peter 
ii. 1. This distinction of this double receiving the Spirit, the apostle in- 
sinuates both in that Rom. viii. and Gal. vi. 7, 8. In that Rom. viii. 15, 
he speaks of a ' Spirit of bondage,' which, as servants, they in some measure 
or other had formerly received from God. Look in what state men stand to 
God, they answerably more or less have a portion of his Spirit on them. 
If they are only in the state of servants, they have a ' Spirit of bondage' 
working legally that fear of death which is in all men : Heb. ii. 15, ' And 
* Qu. 'bought'?— Ed. 


deliver them who, through fear of death, were all their lifetime subject to 
bondage.' The one place interprets the other. Those stirrings of guilt 

and condemnations which are in all men's hearts, are from workings of the 

Spirit in all men. The same Spirit that moved upon the waters, Gen. i., i^vvv^-H 
.mo ves upon all men's hearts. Now if men live under the preaching of ^-^\^4i^ 1 
law and gospel, then the samo Spirit falls with higher works upon the spirits ' 
of men unrenewed, yet still but upon the same account that is mentioned : 
Gen. vi. 3, ' My Spirit shall not always strive with man, for that ho also is 
but flesh.' He had spoken of the sons of God (ver. 2), that were the pro- 
fessors of that age, who lived under Noah's ministry, ' a preacher of right- 
eousness,' Heb. xi. 7. And he went with his ministry in a way of striving 
with and opposing men's corruptions in their hearts ; of which Peter, 
(1 Peter iii. 18), having said that Christ was • quickened or raised by the 
Spirit,' he adds (ver. 19), 'by which Spirit also he went and preached unto 
the spirits in prison, which sometimes were disobedient, when once the 
longsufl'ering of God waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was a pre- 
paring, when few, that is, eight souls, were saved by water.' These men 
were corrupt, and remained flesh, and yet received the Spirit, striving with 
them from God, as the Lord and Judge of the world, who to men fallen 
gives his Spirit, as at first he did to Adam, with a new stock of gifts and 
motions, but deals with them therein but upon a covenant of works. It 
is a favour indeed to give him, as all outward gifts of the Spirit are, but 
their persons being under the covenant of works, and servants, their retain- 
ing this Spirit is according to the terms thereof ; and so it proves in the 
issue, and their improving that gift is managed according to the dispensa- 
tion of such a covenant. And so they, by opposing and resisting such 
strivings of the Spirit, God withdraws him. For he says, ' My Spirit shall 
not always strive.' He deals with them as with servants that are untoward 
and rebellious : John viii. 35, ' The servant abides not in the house for 
ever ;' but as Hagar was turned out of doors, and inherited not, so it is here. 
1 But' (says Christ) ' a son abides for ever in the house,' and therefore they, 
as children, receive ' the Spirit of adoption to cry, Abba, Father.' And 
the Spirit of Christ, as their head, remains in them, and they are overcome 
and led by the Spirit of God. These are sons ; and that they may abide in 
the house for ever, this Spirit abides in them for ever. You have the very 
same distinction of men receiving the Spirit as servants and as sons : Gal. 
iv. 6, 7, ' Because ye are sons, God hath sent forth the Spirit of his Son 
into your hearts, crying, Abba, Father. Wherefore thou art no more a 
servant, but a Son, an heir of God through Christ.' The meaning is, they 
receive the Spirit as sons, not as servants, as others do. To which add 
ver. 22, 23, &c, where Hagar and Ishmael, and Sarah and Isaac, are 
made the types of these two conditions of men living in the church, as they 
did in Abraham's family ; and Christ, John viii., alluded evidently unto 
it in that speech fore-quoted, verses 33, 34, 35, ' They answered him, We 
be Abraham's seed, and were never in bondage to any man ; how sayest 
thou, Ye shall be made free? Jesus answered them, Verily, verily, I say 
unto you, Whosoever committeth sin is the servant of sin. And the servant 
abideth not in the house for ever, but the son abideth ever.' Both these, 
living under the means, had dealings with God : Gen. xxi. verses 17-20, 
' And the angel of God called to Hagar out of heaven, and said unto her, 
What aileth thee, Hagar ? Fear not ; for God hath heard the voice of the 
lad, where he is. Arise, lift up the lad, and hold him in thine hand ; for 
I will make him a great nation. And God was with the lad,' &c. But yet 


this was but according to the covenant of works, whereof they were types. 
And their spirits used all gifts, motions, visions, &c, in such a way, and 
bo at last the Spirit was withdrawn from them. 

And therefore let not that deceive you, that men that fall away are said 
to be ' partakers of the Holy Ghost,' &c, for they may be so when yet 
they are not sons. The Holy Ghost comes to some as a wayfaring man, 
for a night. But do you not feel that though he may withdraw many 
effects, yet still his person is in you, and works, even amidst your sinnings, 
to reduce you again to God, and suffers you not to be finally overcome, but 
frames your hearts so as you give yourselves up to be led by him, and you 
treat with God of his abode in you, and of your salvation, not upon a 
covenant of works, but grace. Look to your tenure, by which God guides 
your hearts to seek the Spirit and salvation. Everyman's heart and spirit 
(as a pen in his hand) is guided to write his own deeds and terms he holds 
salvation on. Dost thou treat with God, as a son, upon mere terms of free 
grace, renouncing Ishmael's covenant and tenure, not daring to treat with 
God upon these terms, If I walk thus and thus, God will give and continue 
his Spirit to me ? No ; but thou sayest as David, ' Lord, give me thy 
constant Spirit,' to work all in me, to cause me to walk in thy statutes. 
Ps. li. 10, 11, ' Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right 
spirit within me. Cast me not away from thy presence ; and take not thy 
Holy Spirit from me.' In the margin it is, ' a constant spirit within me ;' 
and if this is thy dependence and thy salvation, and if upon these terms 
thou boldest and retainest the Spirit, thou art a son. You esteem it in 
lands as a matter of great moment the tenure, whether it be freehold or 
copyhold. My brethren, know there is a freehold of the Spirit, and a 
copyhold ; and go over but thy prayers and the workings of thy spirit with 
God, and thou wilt easily see thy tenure. 



That we not only partake of the effects of the Holy Spirit's operations hi us, 
but also of liis person dwelling in ns. 

There is a gift of his perso n, first and chiefly, or primarily ; but second- 
arily of his graces, to be wrought in us by him. And in this gift of his 
person doth consist the greatness, the richness of the gift. This is ex- 
pressed in those wwds, ' Whom he shed on us richly,' Titus iii. 6. This, 
I say, is intended of his person first, and simply, and then of his graces 
and effects, as in the second place intended to us, as those which accompany 
the gift of his person, and as handmaids upon it, and do flow from and 
depend upon the bestowing and gift of himself. Thus there is the gift of 
i the person of Christ tp us and for us ; and there is the gift of all those 
2 benefi ts which he hath purchased ; but the gift of his person is, of the two, 
greaTer infinitely than that of his benefits, as the person is more worth than 
the dowry. And thus you are to look at the gift of the person of the 
Spirit more than all his p/awc/xara, or gifts. Let us hear how the 
Scripture speaks to this great point, and sets a value and indigitation upon 
it as in distinction from his graces : Rom. v. 5, ' The love of God is shed 
abroadin our hearts, by the Holy Ghost whu:hjsj*ivenJ 1 Q_jis.' Here you may 
observe a set distinction made between this one effect of the Spirit in us, 
viz., ' the shedding abroad the love of God in our hearts,' and the gift of 

Chap. IX.] in our salvation. 50 

the person of the Spirit; and how there is Drought in a manifest super- 
aihlition of the gift of his person over and above that effect of shedding God's 
love : ' by the Spirit,' says ho, ' which he hath given us.' Thus he speaks 
of the gift of the person himself singly and apart, distinct from the other ; 
yea, and as being the foundation of it. Take this instance and comparison. 
God having given a wife to a man, by whom he hath had such and such 
children, such and such an estate, benefits, and privileges ; when mention 
is made of any one of those good things that accrued by her, she, to heighten 
the mercy of the gifts, by the consideration of the person by means of whom 
the man hath them, might say, All these things are by the wife which God 
hath given thee. The same import you have in other such appendixes 
and additional clauses to the like purpose. Acts v. 32, ' And we ' (that is, 
apostles) ' are his witnesses,' (that is, Christ's) ' of these things ; and so is 
also the Holy Ghost,' (which manifestly refers to his person). The apostle 
adds, ' Whom God hath given to them that obey him ;' thus notably holding 
up unto their view the greatness of this gift. And indeed the pouring forth 
the Holy Ghost is all the discourse of the first ten chapters of the Acts. 
And therefore it is elsewhere called the ' gift of the Holy Ghost, Acts s. 45. 
It is not yjzoiGijjuru (spoken of 1 Cor. xii.jTgifts, in the plural, as speaking 
of his graces, but it is ' the gift,' as one absolute, full, an d entire gift, once 
given for all ; his person containing virtually all other parcels and particular 
gifts, which he after works. The like addition to signify this you may 
observe, 1 Cor. vi. 19, ' Your bodies are temples of the Holy Ghost, which 
is in you, whom ye have of God.' This refers also manifestly to his person, 
as I shall have occasion further to shew ; and it comes in to mind them of 
the greatness of the gift, and the special favour of the donor, ' whom ye have 
of God.' Again you have it, 1 Cor. ii. 12, ' We have received the Spirit 
which is of God, that we may know the free gift of God to us.' Here is 
a double gift, and both from God, distinguished, 1, The grace or gifts of 
God and his Spirit bestowed on us, ra yjxpia&hra or yaoiui^aTo. ; and 2, The 
gift of the person of the Spirit distinct from these, whom we receive (says 
he) as given by God first, and so received by us. And he is given (as to 
other ends) so that we may know these things he gives us, or w T orks in us, 
the gift of which is distinct from that of his person, which is set out further 
by this ro crvsD/xa rou &iod. The Spirit is out of God himself, and proceed- 
ing from him, and he is in God, as the spirit of a man in a man, ver. 11. 
The reason of this is, because the Spirit is given us by the covenant of 
grace, which covenant makes freely over all that is in God unto us, 
and for our good ; all, both attributes and persons in him, the donation 
thereof running thus, ' I will be thy God, and thou shalt be my people.' 
I use to say that the covenant of grace is in all the transactions a covenant 
of persons. Consider that of election in the Father's hand ; he pitched not 
on qualifications, but persons, afore they had done good or evil, Rom ix. 13. 
And therefore so long as the persons remain, his love remains ; and thence 
he works that in the person which may make him comely : Eph. i. 4, ' He 
hath chosen us in him, before the foundation of the world, that we should 
be holy, and without blame before him in love.' And Christ, when he comes, 
he gives his person, ' He gave himself,' as everywhere it is said, both to us 
and for us ; and he died not for abstracted propositions, but persons. ' I 
lay down my life for my sheep, and I know them by name.' And when he 
applies his blood to us, he gives us himself, and the soul in the end see 
his person also, as Paul did, Phil. hi. 8. Thus answerably, in the third 
person, the gift of the Holy Ghost is the gift of his person to dwell in us. 


The next thing to be considered is his coming upon us, and his dwelling 
in us. I have two assertions to add concerning this. 

1. Concerning his coming upon us, and God's shedding him forth, my 
assertion is, that the first coming of the Holy Ghost is i mmedia tely upon 
us, as we are in our natural condition, in our uncleanness and pollution, 
without any preparation to make way for his coming upon us, or into us. 
He doth not work grace first, and then come into a man ; but he comes first 
and seizeth on a man, then works grace in him. And this the text in Tit. 
iii. 6 insinuates ; when weighing the mercy thereof, the apostle says, ' He 
shed his Spirit upon us.' On us ; how qualified ? The fourth verse tells 
us, ' Us, when disobedient, serving divers lusts and pleasures.' And he 
then sent him to renew us, ver. 5. Such were the vessels when this pre- 
cious liquor was first poured into them, and upon them. And his coming 
first thus on men when in their natural state, is exemplified in the Corin- 
thians ; yea, and pressed on them as a great point, which the apostle would 
have them seriously to mind and consider, to the end they might ascribe 
unto the Holy Ghost his due glory : 1 Cor. xii. 1-3, ' Now concerning 
spiritual gifts, brethren, I would not have you ignorant. Ye know that ye 
were Gentiles, carried away unto those dumb idols, even as ye were led. 
Wherefore I will give you to understand, that no man speaking by the 
Spirit of God calleth Jesus accursed : and that no man can say that Jesus 
is the Lord, but by the Holy Ghost.' Being to treat of spiritual gifts in- 
fused into the people of God, he prefaceth this, I would have you (says he) 
know and consider these things about them. 1st, That the author of them 
is wholly and entirely the Spirit of God. ' No man can say,' or confess 
out of conviction of judgment, ' that Jesus is the Lord, but hy_the_Hi2ly 
^Ghost.' And the embracing of this foundation of Christian religion was 
before any further spiritual gift was communicated unto you, but was in- 
deed the foundation of bestowing it, ' for no man, speaking by the Spirit, 
calleth Jesus an execration.' Then, 2d, says he, I would have you remem- 
ber the condition you were in when the Spirit of God began first to teach 
you this : you were all idolaters, led away as brute beasts after dumb idols, 
when also you execrated and abominated our Jesus (as to this day the Jews 
and heathens do), when it was certain, therefore, that you had not the Spirit 
of God in you ; ' for no man that hath the Spirit calleth Christ accursed,' 
as ye then did. So then, who was the first beginner of this great change 
and alteration but the Spirit of God ? And 3d, If this were your condi- 
tion (as it was), what did or could the Spirit find in you, as preparatory 
and inviting of him thereunto ? Absolutely nothing at all. The lowest 
and first step which can be supposed to be out of heathenism into Chris- 
tianity, viz., the thoughts and profession that our Jesus is the Lord and Christ ; 
even this first thought, which is the introduction to all, you, says the 
apostle, had from the Spirit of God first, as well as you have been enlight- 
ened by him since. 4th, He would have them further consider that they, 
when they were thus idolatrous, were acted and possessed by another greater 
spirit than their own, who invisibly was in them, and yet effectually wrought 
in them, and had possession of their minds, fancies, and affections (which 
unless he had been in them he could not have), ' Even Satan, that evil 
spirit, the god of this world,' who (as it is said, 2 Cor. iv. 4) blinded these 
heathens. This he clearly insinuates to them (and puts it in, as in oppo- 
sition to their now having the Spirit of God) in these words, ' Ye were led 
after dumb idols.' Led, even as brute beasts are at the pleasure of them 
that possess them ; and led by some other spirit than their own. It had 

Chap. IX.] in our salvation. 61 

been impossible else that so many wise heathens should have worshipped 
dumb idols (as on purpose he terms them), themselves having reasonable 
souls, that thought and spake, which those idols, that had eyes and saw 
not, wanted. Now then the apostle would have them to consider that ere 
their judgments could be led to own Christ as Lord, this evil spirit must 
be dispossessed ; and another spirit, even the Spirit of God, come in his 
room, and possess their hearts, and so lead them into all the truth they 
then possessed ; without which they had never embraced the first element 
or principle of Christian verity. From which instance and experiment in 
the Corinthians, I infer, that the Spirit of God, when he converts men to 
things spiritual, comes upon a man when a heathen, suppose, as then the 
world went, or on us, when unregenerate. And it is confirmed by this, 
that the Holy Ghost reveals not any truth, or works any saving good, but 
a man first hath him sent down into his heart. He is first sent and shed 
upon us, ere we are led into all or into any truth; as the 14th, 15th, 16th 
chapters of John shew. We receive him as an unction first, ere he savingly 
teacheth us any truth. 1 John ii. 20, ' Ye have an unction from the holy 
One ' (which is the Spirit, Acts x. 30), ' and ye know all things,' first and 
last. All that ye know in spirituals, it is from him, yea, and by having 
him first. And as from having him first it is that we begin to know, so, 
that we continue to know and acknowledge spiritual things savingly, is from 
his abiding in us. He in his person is first said to abide, and so to go on 
to teach us. So ver. 27 of that chapter, ' But the anointing which ye have 
received of him abides in you : but as the same anointing teacheth you of 
all things, and is truth, and is no lie, and even as it hath taught you, ye 
shall abide in him.' So then these idolatrous Corinthians, when they were 
converted to God, had first the Spirit communicated to them, casting out 
that evil spirit, and possessing his room in them, ere they could be taught 
the first letter in this school. Which agrees with what Christ says of the 
casting out Satan, in order to men's conversions (unto which Christ's scope 
extends) : Mat. xii. 27, 28, ' If I by Beelzebub cast out devils, by whom do 
your children cast them out ? therefore they shall be your judges. But if 
I cast out devils by the Spirit of God, then the kingdom of God is come 
unto you ;' with which compare Luke xi. 20-22, &c. It is said by Matthew 
that it is the Spirit, by Luke, the finger of God, by whom Christ professeth 
to cast out devils, in men to be converted, as well as out of men possecsed. 
This Spirit he compares there to a stronger than Satan, that comes upon 
him immediately as he is in his house or place,* binds him, and overcomes 
him ; and so himself enters in, as Matthew's and Mark's phrase is. For 
it is entry and possession the Holy Ghost aims at ; and it is the first thing 
he doth, after he hath pulled forth Satan, that was in possession, and bound 
him ; and then, being entered, he throws out his goods and weapons, mor- 
tifies corruptions, and sanctifies the heart, and leads the soul into saving 
truths. And this is it which Paul insinuates, that he came upon these 
Corinthians, cast out the spirit that led them into error, entered himself, 
and led them into truth. And it was as necessary he should first come on 
them, ere they could spiritually assent to the first or least truth, as it is 
necessary he comes on us, and abides in us, to lead us into all truth else. 
And therefore it evidently follows, both, first, that the shedding forth, or 
entering in of the Holy Spirit is the first foundation to all wrought in us ; 
and secondly, that therefore this his coming upon us and entering into us 
is immediately, without any preparation, when men are unregenerate. 
* Qu. ' palace ' ? — Ed. 


When Christ indeed comes to dwell in our hearts by faith, as Eph. iii. 17, 
there need be preparation in our hearts for that his corning, and there is a 
preparing the way of the Lord. For he is to be received by our faith as a 
Saviour and Redeemer, and therefore we cannot receive him as supposed to 
be such until we see ourselves sinners. But our receiving the Spirit is not 
objective, as we receive an object into our understandings or hearts, and so 
needs no preparation on our parts ; for he himself must first come to work 
all apprehensions and affections in us, from first to last: Gal. iv. G, ' He 
sends his Spirit into our hearts, crying, Abba, Father ;' and he cries as he 
comes along. 

There are two or three objections which I will answer. 

Obj. 1. Can we imagine that the Spirit of God, who is so holy a Spirit, 
will come and enter into and possess himself of an unclean, filthy, and 
defiled heart, in the fulness and spring-tide of its filth and uncleanness ? 
Doth he not rather first make the heart holy, and then by that holiness dwell 
therein, seating himself in the new creature which he first creates ? Thus 
indeed some have evangelised, and thereupon distinguished between his 
coming upon us, as at first, and his dwelling in us. 

But I answer. 

Ans. 1. That if the Spirit could be defiled in so doing, he would not do 
it ; but this earth muds not the water that gets into it to become a spring, 
no more than the sunbeams are by shining into a dunghill. 

Ans. 2. The substance of the soul (which he comes to) is his own, and he 
comes to make it clean, which he cannot do, unless he gets within it. It 
is well for us he is so holy, for no other water but of this preciousness 
would have virtue and power to cleanse us. And this is no more absurdity 
than to say, that pure water is poured first into a vessel to take away the 
filth of it ; or that fire gets into and fills the pores of metals in the ore, 
whilst full of dross, to burn out, and consume, and separate it from them. 
Now these are the comparisons the Scripture useth: Ezek. xxxvi. 25, ' I 
will sprinkle clean water upon you.' And is not tbat pity, you will say, 
that not only water, but clean water, should be poured upon defiled hearts, 
utterly defiled ? God prevents the objection, in telling us that he thinks 
not much at this cost. The cleanest, sweetest water that heaven affords, 
he chooseth, viz., his own Holy Spirit. But the water is so clean, as it 
receives no tincture whilst it runs through you, and cleanseth you ; as it 
there follows, ' And ye shall be clean; from all your filthiness, and from all 
your idols, will I cleanse you ; and a new heart will I give jou.' And this 
is interpreted to be the Spirit : ver. 27, ' I will put my Spirit within you ; ' 
not upon you only : that will not serve to cleanse ; he therefore puts him 
first into you. And what is this but what you read, 1 Cor. vi. 11, ' Such 
were some of you, but ye are washed :' there is the genus, or in common 
the Spirit's work ; the particulars follow : ' But ye are sanctified, but ye 
are justified, in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God.' 
The Spirit must do both, And it is no strange thing ye should receive the 
Spirit, and he come into you to do all these, ere ever you are sanctified or 
justified. That other comparison of fire, I need not insist on. You hav& 
it, Isa. iv. 4, ' When the Lord shall have purged the blood of Jerusalem by 
the Spirit of burning.' You know how the Holy Ghost in this respect is 
compared to fire up and down the New Testament. Now what is it to the 
fire to enter into what is drossy and defiled, to eat it out and consume it ? 
Such fuel is proper for it to seize on, and shew its power upon. And wbat 
is it to this rushing wind to enter into the middle of a rotten house (the old 

Chap. IX.) in our salvation. 03 

man) and blow it down, and rear up a now one in the room of it ? And 
what is it for this strong man to enter into Satan's house, whilst he is in 
it, and throw him out, and spoil and rifle all his goods, and throw them out 
after him ? He will not stand without doors to do it, as Christ also tells us. 

Obj. 2. A second objection is out of John xiv. 17, where Christ, speaking 
of the Spirit, says, ' Whom the world ' (or men unregenerate) ' cannot receive, 
because they see him not, neither know him : but ye know him ; for ho 
dwelleth with you,' &c. 

Am. The answer is clear. That promise of the Spirit thero is meant of 
him as a comforter and assurer of salvation; so ver. 1G, ' I will pray the 
Father, and he will give you another Comforter, that he may abide with 
you for ever.' Now, as such, he can never come first on an unregenerate 
man, but he must be a Spirit of bondage first to him, and (as chap. xvi. 
ver. 8) ' convince the world of sin.' And therefore they in that condition 
are not capable of the Spirit as a sealer ; for they must have regeneration 
first, and faith first wrought : Eph. i. 13, ' After ye believed, ye were sealed 
with the Spirit of promise.' So as Christ's plain meaning is this : you that are 
already believers, and have already experimentally felt the workings of this 
Spirit in you, ' you know him' (says he), and to you, and to others that 
know him, by having been already wrought upon, I will send him as a 
Comforter, to fill your hearts with joy in believing, unspeakable and glorious. 
But unregenerate men are utterly incapable of this privilege, for they know 
him not in these first effects of regeneration and change of heart, and there- 
fore as a comforter they see not nor know him. He must be a regenerator 
ere a comforter. Receive him they may to convert them, but not thus to 
assure them, until he hath wrought regeneration in them, as he hath done 
on you. 

I shall now discourse about the indwelling or inbeing of the Spirit in us 
after he is thus come. Concerning which my assertion is this, 

That the indwelling of the Spirit also is of his person primarily and im- 
mediately, and by his graces secondarily. And although it be with his 
graces, yet it is not primarily by his graces ; but his person is given to 
dwell in us immediately and for ever, and his graces secondarily. Our 
persons (bodies and souls) are the temples of his person immediately ; his 
graces are the hangings, the furniture, that he may dwell like himself, ut 
habitet decore, that he may dwell handsomely. He is a holy Spirit, and 
' holiness becomes his house,' as the psalmist speaks ; and so, though he 
comes first into bare walls, yet he afterwards adorns them. You have 
a parallel made in the Scriptures of this point of his indwelling with that 
former, of the gift of him : that as his person hath been shewed to be the 
great gift, and his graces the secondary gift, so his indwelling is primarily 
added to his person, and to his graces secondarily. Because sometimes in 
Scripture the Spirit is used to express his graces, the cause being put for 
the effect, therefore it hath been generally almost asserted that he dwells 
no otherwise in us than by having wrought such and such graces. But my 
position is, that as the person of the Spirit is primarily given, so his person 
doth primarily dwell in us, and his graces secondarily. And this I hope to 
make clear by parallel scriptures to those other. 

I. That text in 1 Cor. vi. 19 (which I said I should have recourse to 
again), shews it: 'Your bodies' (and therefore much more your souls) ' are 
the temples of the Holy Ghost, who is in you.' It was not sufficient for 
him to say they were as his temples, for him to be worshipped in, by and 
through the graces he puts in them, but he adds, ' Who is in you, whom 


ye have of God.' Besides what afore was said, it appears further thus ; 
for as he heightens their sin of fornication, in the former verse, that it is 
against the person of Christ, in respect of their relation to him as a husband, 
so in like manner in this verse, that it is against the person of the Holy 
Ghost, an indweller in them : ' Ye are the temples of the Holy Ghost, who 
is in you.' It is therefore made a distinctive property of the Holy Ghost 
as in relation to the saints (even as procession is proper to him in relation 
to the Father), that he is the indweller in us : 2 Tim. i. 14, ' That good 
thing which was committed unto thee keep by the Holy Ghost which 
dwelleth in us.' You may observe that in the place before cited, how still 
there came in this superadditional clause, ' By the Holy Ghost which is given 
in us ;' so in like manner that other clause, ' the Holy Ghost which dwells 
in us,' where the person of the Holy Ghost, as thus dwelling in us, is spoken 
of as abstracted and severed from his grace by two characters : First, That 
he exhorts Timothy to keep the truth in faith and love ; ver. 13, as also 
ver. 14, that whole frame both of grace and form of truth, which he calls 
' that good thing committed to him by the Holy Ghost.' For evidently 
severing the Holy Ghost's person, as the conservator of faith, and love of 
the truth, and of all that is good within us, or committed to us. He dis- 
tinguisheth him (I say) from these graces as the things that are to be pre- 
served by him. For else he should exhort to keep these graces by these 
graces themselves, if he meant that they were these graces by which the 
Holy Ghost doth only dwell within us. Secondly, his exhortation to 
Timothy runs not thus, ' By the Holy Ghost who dwells in thee,' which 
yet had been more proper if he had intended the indwelling of those graces 
in him ; but he speaks generally ' by the Holy Ghost who dwells in thee and 
us,' all in common. 

II. It may be observed, that whereas both God and Christ, those other 
two persons, are also in Scripture said to be in us, and to dwell in us, yet 
this indwelling is more special, and immediationi suppositi, attributed to the 
Holy Ghost ; which, as it serves to give him an honour peculiar to him, 
so when set in such a comparison, even with them, must be meant and 
understood of his person immediately, and not by his graces only. Yea, 
the other two persons are said to dwell in us, and the Godhead itself, be- 
cause the Holy Ghost dwells in us, he being the person that makes entry, 
and takes possession first, in the name and for the use of the other two, and 
so bringeth them in. I shall but name the place which looks this way : 
Eph. ii. 22, ' Ye are an habitation unto God by the Spirit;' 1 Cor. iii. 16, 
' Know ye not that ye are the temple of God ? ' namely, the Father, or (if 
ye will) the Godhead itself. And it follows by a special addition, ' And 
that the Spirit of God dwells in you.' So giving the original foundation or 
ground how we came to be tempies of God, because the Spirit of God dwells 
there. Or, as afterwards, chap, vi., ' The Spirit which ye have of God.' 
Likewise, 1 John iii. 24, ' He that keepeth his commandments dwelleth in 
him, and he in him.' Take it either of God the Father or the Son, for he 
had spoken of either : ver. 23, ' And hereby we know that ho abideth in 
us, by the Spirit which he hath given us,' whom we feel dwelling and work- 
ing in our hearts. And therefore our divines have generally affirmed it, 
that Christ is paid to dwell in us, because first his Spirit dwells in us, from 
Rom. viii. 9, 10, compared. Now to me it were strange to interpret such 
speeches that God and Christ dwell in us, because their Spirit dwells in 
us, and then by the Spirit mean only his grace, or the Spirit only by his 
grace ; for the Spirit of God being a third person, must needs be acknow- 

Chap. IX.J in our salvation. 65 

id an indweller as well as the other two ; yea, and to como in between 
them and his own grace, seeing their dwelling in ns is attributed to his. 
The truth is, that it is in this union of ours with God, as in that of Christ; 
that look, as in the union of the man Jesus unto the Son of God, and in 
the indwelling of tho Son of God in that human nature, the Son of God first 
and originally dwells there, and ho dwelling therein, tho Father is in the man, 
and the Spirit is in him, and he in the Father; so is it here in this subordi- 
nate union of ours that tho third person comes as the first inmate in us, and 
ho taking possession, the other two come in and take up their abode also. 

Or, if you will, you may view it in the Spirit's comforting of us, which 
holds parallel to this. Christ first promiseth to send the Spirit, as our com- 
forter, into us: 'And when he is come' (says he, Johnxiv. 15, 17), 'I will 
pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that ho may 
abide with you for ever ; even the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot 
receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; 
for he dwellethwith you, and shall be in you.' ' And in that clay' (ver. 20) 
'ye shall know that I am in my Father, and you in me, and I in you.' 'If 
any man love me ' (ver. 23), ' my Father will love him, and we will come to 
him, and make our abode with him.' So the Spirit comes first. And thus 
it is even in their indwelling also ; so as indeed it may be rightly urged to 
the point in hand, that if it be thus, that God and Christ dwell in us, be- 
cause his Spirit dwells in us, that then much more it must be granted that 
his graces are said to be and to dwell in our hearts, because the Spirit first 
and primarily, who is the author of them, doth so ; as the beams do there- 
fore dwell in this visible world, or the heavens, because the sun doth first 
and originally dwell there, whose emanations and fiowings forth they are. 
I might bring an invincible argument from this, that he first comes ere he 
works grace, but I refer it to the next head. 

I observe that gifts and graces are called the manifestation of the Spirit, 
1 Cor. xii. 7, that is, an outward demonstration or manifestation in men of 
that Spirit that dwells and abides within the heart, and is invisible. The 
seeing of the eye, the hearing of the ear, the acting of the fancy, and speech 
in the tongue, are the manifestation of the soul that dwells in the body, and 
dwells not there by these, but with these ; and in order, the soul itself is 
that syiXiyja,* that actus primus of these, as actus secundi. And such is the 
Spirit to our souls, and his grace, he dwelling first in us himself. And 
therefore, as animalis homo is a man that hath no more but a soul in him, 
that informs him, and acts him, without the Spirit of God, so oppositely 
he is a spiritual man (you have the opposition, 2 Cor. ii. 15) that hath 
received into his heart the Spirit of God (read all the verses afore), that he 
might know the things of God. 

The objection which hath diverted men from this assertion is, that the 
person of the Holy Ghost is everywhere: Ps. exxxix. 7, 'Whither shall I go 
from thy Spirit ? or whither shall I fly from thy presence ? If I ascend up 
into heaven, thou art there,' &c. And in that respect, his person is as 
much in a worm as in the saints, and in all alike ; therefore, how can his 
person be said to dwell more in the saints than elsewhere, otherwise than 
by his effects and graces ? 

1. According to the severity of this reason, the second person, the Son of 
God, should not be said to dwell otherwise in the human nature of Christ 
than by effects and graces, which, Col. ii. 9, he is said to do : ' For in him 

* Qu. ' 'ivnXeyjia ' ? — Ed. 


dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily,' in distinction from saints 
and angels. For essentially, as he is God, he is also in the meanest crea- 
ture ; and yet the person of the Son, and the Godhead itself, dwells person- 
ally in that nature, and not the graces only. Now, what is it makes that 
indwelling to be more than by graces and effects, and so puts that vast 
difference ? All acknowledge that it is because he takes up that human 
nature into a nearer relation to his person, so as to be one person with it 
immediately ; and such an union graces alone work not, nor gives founda- 
tion unto. And so he dwells in him upon that account. 

Well then, 2dly, it is true that into so near and high a relation the 
saints are not taken up. They are not made one with the Spirit, nor doth 
the Spirit dwell in them upon that account. The Spirit dwelling in a saint 
is not said to be ' made flesh,' as the Word is, John i. 14 ; for then, what 
good or evil the saints do would personally be accounted the Holy Ghost's; 
our prayers his, subjectively ; yea, and our sins his ; as the blood and obe- 
dience of that man Jesus was the blood and obedience of God, and the Son 
of God. Therefore our relation to the Holy Ghost's person is not so near 
by God's ordination. Yet, 

3dly (as to the point in hand), We are capable and are made partakers, by 
the like ordination and free gift of God, of a relation, or propriety rather, 
to the very person of the Holy Ghost, which, though it be lower than that 
of the Son of God to human nature in Christ God-man, yet it is not 
founded upon graces, but is beyond them, and before them, even by God's 
free and absolute gift and donation of his person to us, in order to such 
graces, and the working of them in us. So as that this person should 
indeed dwell in us, in reference to graces as the final cause, but not the 
instrument at all, or means of his indwelling. It is unio personarum, an 
union of two persons immediately, us and him remaining two persons 
still, as that of marriage is of two persons immediately, in order to such 
and such ends. And it is not unio personalis, to become one person, as that 
of the two natures of Christ, the human and the divine, which is unio 
duarum naturanun, but not unio naturalis, of two natures, but not into one 
nature, but one person. And this difference was exemplified in Cbrist him- 
self, our head, in the man Christ Jesus, in whom the Spirit of God dwells, 
not personally, for then Christ would be one person with the Holy Ghost 
as well as with the Son of God ; nor doth the Father dwell personally in 
Christ, for then all three persons should have been said to be incarnate. 
And yet I suppose none will say that the person of the Spirit, nor of the 
Son, dwells in the man Jesus only by means of his graces. But further, 
the person of the Spirit first rests on the man Christ, which person he hath 
a right unto, that he should dwell in him, because that man Christ Jesus 
is now united to the second person personally, and so to his graces second- 
arily. So as if we ask whether in order of nature the person of the Spirit 
dwells in him first, or the Spirit by its graces, we may without any hesita- 
tion answer, the person of the Spirit primarily, and then his graces. Unto 
which seems to me to accord that in Isa. xi. 12, where it is first said, 'The 
Spirit of the Lord shall rest upon him ; ' namely, the person of the Holy 
Ghost, simply and absolutely considered ; then relatively, as in order to 
endowing him with such and such particular graces, viz., 'The Spirit of 
wisdom and understanding, the Spirit of counsel and might, the Spirit of 
knowledge, and of the fear of the Lord.' 

Now for the manner of the indwelling of the Holy Ghost's person ; it is 
no error to affirm that it is the same in us and the man Christ Jesus. Sure 


we are capable of it, and therefore shall have it, we being to be conformed 
to his image and likeness (as he to ours) in all that is possible, as hi; was 
to ns, sin only excepted ; so we to him, the personal union and the privi- 
lege of it excepted. Only, indeed, we differ herein from him in two things. 
1. In the measure ; for he hath the Spirit given him 'without measure' 
in his effects. 2. In the right to this indwelling of his person in us, and 
in him. He holds it as a royalty, and one of the greatest, from his per- 
sonal anion with the Son of God. We hold it in his right, and by virtue 
of the covenant of grace, and free donation ; for because we are sons 
adopted in him, ' ho hath sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts,' Gal. 
iv. ti. But the modus, the manner of the indwelling, is one and the same. 
These things long since satisfied me in this great point, and I submit 
them to judgment. 


The uses of the foregoing doctrine. 

Use 1. Let us view with admiration the riches of this gift of the person 
of the Holy Ghost. It is the word which the apostle useth here in the text, 
1 whom he shed upon us,' xXouaiug, ' richly.' Let us value him accordingly. 
You value the things (every one of them) which God hath given us ; then 
value the Spirit much more, who is the author of the most, and discoverer 
of them all. Take the most precious of graces, ' like precious faith ' (as 
Peter calls it), assurance of the love of God, which is the earnest of glory; 
the gift of the Spirit that works this faith, and the shedder abroad of this 
love, is infinitely greater. And therefore, in Rom. v. 5, after the enumera- 
tion of faith, and all the fruits of it, peace with God, rejoicing in hope of 
glory, patience, experience, shedding abroad the love of God in our hearts, 
it is super-added, as more than all these, being the root, the spring of all, 
' the Spirit which he hath given us.' Yea, and as in ver. 6, 7, 8, he sets 
out the greatness of the love of God, that gave Christ to die for us ; so, in 
those verses aforesaid, he would in like manner insinuate the greatness of 
that love that gave us this Holy Spirit to work all these graces in us, and 
reveal the love which God hath so commended. Insomuch as this hath 
been started as matter of debate, and most serious consideration, by some 
divines ; whether Filius datus (Isa. ix.), ' To us a Son is given,' or Spiritus 
datus, * The Spirit given' (Rom. v.), be the richer favour ? Whether the 
incarnation, ' God manifest in the flesh,' or the diffusion, or ' pouring forth 
of the Spirit upon all flesh,' be the greater mercy ? From heaven they 
both came down, the Spirit as well as the Son, 1 Pet. i. 2, and from the 
bosom of the Father both. They are both of them pawns, and earnests, 
and witnesses alike, of one and the same love. It is also a dispute among 
interpreters, whether the gift of God, which, Kar l%o%flv (as it is called), is 
predicated so much, and held at so high a rate, John iv. 10, be Christ, or 
the Spirit, ' Jesus answered and said unto her, If thou knewest the gift of 
God, and who it is that saith to thee, Give me to drink ; thou wouldst 
have asked of him, and he would have given thee living water.' It is ques- 
tioned whether, as the sole sufficient satisfying object of our desires, is the 
gift of the Son or the gift of the Spirit ? Whether Christ means himself, 
or the Holy Ghost, as given to us ? Many carry it to Christ, but the con- 
text more clearly carries it to the Spirit. For, 1, the gift of God (as there) 


seems to be distinguished from, rather than explained by, that which fol- 
lows. ' "Who it is that saith to thee,' and ' give me drink,' seem as two 
things, not one and the same. And, 2, that gift is clearly that living water 
which God and Christ give, and that is the Spirit, ver. 14 being compared 
with John vii. 38, 39. In the Old Testament you hear of it, as more than 
all the mercies of giving the law, or bringing out of Egypt. * Thou gavest 
them thy good Spirit to instruct them.' So Neh. ix. 20, 30, it is twice 
expressed, as also Isa. lxiii., when he professeth to mention ' the loving- 
kindness of the Lord, according to all he hath bestowed upon us,' ver. 7. 
Where you may see how he heaps up and multiplies words to set out the 
riches of God's mercies by. And this he reckons the greatest of their sins, 
that ' they rebelled and vexed his Holy Spirit,' as the greatest mercy of all, 
' and therefore he fought against them,' ver. 10. And then himself remem- 
bers what his kindness of old had been, and how doth he express the height 
of it? ver. 11, ' Where is he that put his Holy Spirit within him ?' And 
when the temple was built again, and they delivered out of Babylon, what 
is the greatest promise God could make, till Christ should come and give a 
greater measure of his Spirit ? You have it, Hag. ii. 5, ' According to the 
word I covenanted with you, when I came out of Egypt, so my Spirit 
remains among you,' as the greatest pledge and pawn of my favour, ' fear 
vou not.' But in the New Testament, there you hear of it again and again ; 
as in the Old, ' Thou gavest them thy good Spirit ;' so in the New, ' He 
hath given his Holy Spirit,' is written almost in every epistle. It is almost 
all the talk, and fills their mouths throughout all the book of the Acts ; 
especially the first fifteen chapters, it was all their talk and speech. The 
first question they asked, when they met any that professed Christ, was (as 
Acts xix. 1, 2), ' Have ye received the Holy Ghost,' yea or no ? So tran- 
scendent a privilege is it. that it is recorded as the emulation of the Jews 
against the Gentiles. The Jews had wont to make Messiah their glory (as 
Simeon hath it, Luke ii. 32, ' The glory of thy people Israel'). But when 
they had received the Holy Ghost (Acts ii.) they would have ran away with 
it alone, as the richest prize, till God confuted them, by pouring forth the 
same Spirit equally, and as much upon the Gentiles, thereby giving both 
sorts his children an equal portion in him, as being the whole of his estate 
now left to bestow, having given his Son afore: Acts xi. 17, ' Forasmuch 
as God gave them' (says Peter) « the like gift of the Holy Ghost, as he did 
unto us,' which argued the utmost of his favour to the one as well as the 
other ; as that of the prophet also shews, Ezek. xxxix. 29, ' Neither will I 
hide my face any more from them, for I have poured forth my Spirit upon 
them, saith the Lord.' Nay then (say the Jews there), let them take all, 
as well as we. God hath withheld nothing from them, ' for then hath God 
granted the Gentiles repentance unto life' ver. 18, and estated them in 
all promises, in all privileges of life, for he hath given them his Spirit. 
Who dares deny to baptize them ? Who dares to shut them out from any 
privileges ? ' For they have received the Holy Ghost as well as we,' says 
Peter, Acts x. 41. And in that hot dispute in Acts xv., about the Gentiles' 
salvation, Peter silences all with this (ver. 8, 9), ' God, who knows their 
hearts, hath given them witness, giving them the Holy Ghost, as he did to 
us, and put no difference between them and us' (so ver. 11). They and we 
are heirs alike of the same salvation; and God (saith Paul an apostle, and a 
Jew, unto the Gentile Corinthians) hath established us with you, and you 
with us, 'hath anointed us,' and ' sealed us,' and 'given us the earnest of 
his Spirit in our hearts,' 2 Cor. i. 21, 22. That as the apostle argues, 

Chap. X.] in our salvation. 69 

' If he hath given us his Son, how shall ho not with him give ns all things"?' 
so the sum of these agitations is, that if God hath given us his Spirit, how 
shall he not give us, I do not say, with him only, but in him, even in that 
one gift of him, give us all things ? In this one gift of the Holy Ghost (as 
it is termed, Acts x. 47, and often elsewhere) — not gifts, as of many, but 
gift, as of one — is contained all the whole, both of grace and glory; tanquam 
in fonts, tanquam in semine ; as in the seed and fountain of both. 

Use 2. Is the gift of the Spirit that great and rich gift which God 
vouchsafes to the sons of men ? Then how miserable are they that have 
not this Spirit in them, nor have had any workings from him in order to 
their salvation, to this very day ! that live a life of sensual pleasures, in 
enjoying meat, drink, marriage, beauty, great houses, riches, fine clothes ; 
and then say (as in Revelations iii. 17), ' I am rich, and have need of 
nothing ; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, 
and blind, and naked ; ' for w r hy, thou wantest the Spirit. When Jude 
would express the misery of these sensual wretches, his words are, ver. 19, 
* not having the Spirit.' And indeed (Rom. viii. 5, 6), ' they that are after 
the flesh do mind the things of the flesh ; but they that are after the Spirit 
the things of the Spirit. For to be carnally minded is death ; but to be 
spiritually minded is life and peace.' 

Use. 3. Let me instruct your hearts accordingly to direct your prayers 
hereafter with answerable intentions and vehemency, for the gift of the 
Spirit himself. You pray in the Spirit, and you bless in the Spirit ; let me 
exhort you to pray for the Spirit above all, and to bless God for this Holy 
Spirit, as one of the greatest blessings of all. When the apostle saw the 
Corinthians eager after spiritual gifts, his care and skill was to pitch their 
aims and desires upon what was most excellent : 1 Cor. xii. 21, ' Covet 
the best gifts ; and yet I shew you a more excellent way.' Thou seekest 
after particular mercies, and some one particular grace thou at present 
rindest thou needest, to be humbled for sin, to be emptied of thine own 
righteousness, to have the right way and art of believing particularly dis- 
covered to thy heart, or to have power against such a lust, &c. And thou 
dost well, for thou art to branch thy prayers into all particular wants. But 
yet let me shew thee a more excellent way. Pray for the Spirit himself to 
be given thee ; and whilst thou seekest for the stream, forget not the foun- 
tain. For when God gives thee him more and more to dwell in thee, and 
fill thee and mingle with thine heart, he brings with himself all these unto 
thee. Is thine heart hard '? If God pour this water on thee, it will soak 
into it, and soften it. Wouldst thou see thy sinfulness, the most spiritual 
wickedness of unbelief, &c, in thee ? ' When he is come, he will convince 
of sin, because they believe not in me,' saith Christ. He that searcheth 
the deepest things of God, is much more able to search and discover the 
shallows of thy heart. Wouldst thou have no confidence in the flesh, but 
be purely earned out of thyself to seek the righteousness of Christ alone, 
and be found therein ? Read Gal. v. 5, ' We through the Spirit wait for 
the righteousness of faith.' Wouldst thou have joy and peace in believing, 
joy unspeakable and glorious, the love of God shed abroad in thine heart ? 
Pray for the Spirit : Rom. xv. 13, ' Now the God of hope fill you with all 
joy and peace in believing, that ye may abound in hope, through the power 
of the Holy Ghost.' Wouldst thou have thy lusts mortified ? ' We 
through the Spirit mortify the deeds of the flesh,' Rom. viii. 13. 'And 
ye through the Spirit have purified your hearts,' 1 Peter i. 22. 

Our Saviour Christ, both in his own practice and direction to us, hath 


guided us to this, as the great request. 1. By his own example ; for what 
is made the greatest and most professed subject of the flower of the most 
raised prayers that our great high priest eternally puts up for us ? Yea, 
and upon what occasion did he first promise that he would pray for us ? 
It is even this : * I will pray the Father to give you another Comforter, even 
the Holy Ghost,' John xiv. 16, 2G. You may judge what things your own 
or others' judgments and apprehensions are raised up to as most excellent, 
by what your prayers and desires therein reach forward to, as the mark of 
your eye. Therefore in Christ's judgment, that knows best what is to be 
prayed for, this is the most excellent. Yea, and you may take this further 
estimate of it, that he promiseth to spend his prayers now in heaven (and 
if ever his heart is wound up to the highest strains, it is there), yea, his 
prayers and intercessions there are spent most upon this subject. And 
though he may be supposed to pray for other things we stand in need of, 
yet I am sure this in particular is mentioned, and perhaps the first 
and chiefest. 

And as his own practice, so his direction pitcheth us upon this also. 
And he cites his father's judgmerit also of this to be the best request we can 
put up ; that if ever we were confined to ask but some one thing, he would 
advise us to ask this. In the 11th of Luke, Christ himself had been pray- 
ing, and was upon that occasion desired to teach them to pray, ver. 1 ; and 
he gives them many particulars in that we call the Lord's Prayer, and then 
makes a parable to provoke them to importunity, ver. 5, 6, 7 ; and 
bids them ' Ask,' and ' seek,' and ' knock,' all being several degrees of more 
urgency, vehemency, and importunity, so ver. 9 ; with promise that such 
shall in the end receive, ver. 10. But then what is the most eminent thing, 
the best, he would direct you to pray for ? Though he had given the par- 
ticulars in the Lord's Prayer, he singleth out^this of the Spirit : ver. 13, ' If 
ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children ; how 
much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that 
ask him ?' He wraps up this direction in a promise, and delivers it by way 
of promise for their greater encouragement, and he calls in his Father's 
judgment to prove that this is the best and greatest request : ' If you, that 
are evil, know how to give good things to your children.' According to your 
judgment you use to give the best, and use to exercise your best judgment 
therein ; then take your heavenly Father's judgment, which is most excellent 
and desirable, even ' his Spirit.' And therefore, Mat. vii. 11 expresseth it 
thus : ' How much more shall your Father in heaven give good things,' 
even all good things (for such the Spirit summarily is), ' to them that ask 
him ?' This is the Father's judgment, you see, and it is Christ's, and you 
may be sure it is the Spirit's. You cannot honour him more than to pray 
most for him, that makes all your prayers ; and he takes it kindly to see 
himself most desired by you, that is the author of all your desires. You 
may observe also how Christ pitcheth our thirstings upon this great sea and 
ocean of goodness, able to supply us with whatever we desire. He had 
taught them (Mat. v.) to ' hunger and thirst after his righteousness,' and 
holiness therewith, with a promise of blessedness. But in the great day 
of the solemn feast, he makes this proclamation, Jobn vii. 37-39, upon 
this last day of the feast he brings forth his best wine — ' Be filled with the 
Spirit, and not with wine' — he proclaims his best commodity at the end o. 
this assembly. And you may observe he says but in general, ' He that 
thirsteth,' he names not what ; because, let it be what good soever the mind 
of man could be supposed to stretch its desires to, that Spirit which he 

Chap. X.J in our salvation. 71 

spake of, ver. 39, was a complete satisfaction to it, and so as they might 
thirst no more. And he directs them to two things ; 1, to believe on him- 
self, and come to him who was to give the Spirit ; and then, 2dly, to come 
to his Spirit as given by him, whom we are also said to drink, 1 Cor. xii. 18. 
Our prayers are the most precious actings of our souls, and it is the greatest 
advantage that can be to us to have the aims of our prayers set to the best 
and highest marks. And upon all accounts you have seen this to be it, 
to pray for the Spirit. And therefore learn hereafter, in your prayers, not 
to deal or traffic in particular or small wares only, but put in for the whole 
stock of the Spirit, as wise merchants use to do, and as Christ himself (as 
you have heard) in his intercession doth. And observe it in experience, 
when the Holy Ghost comes upon you, and fills your hearts as another 
Spirit, sensibly mingling with yours, then if you go over all the promises 
and find them yours, you can then apply this or that, or any one. And 
why '? Because you have the great promise, ' the Spirit of promise.' 
You may (let me say it with reverence) at such a time make use of the 
Spirit to anything whatsoever. You may fall upon your lusts by him, and 
do more at such a time for the destroying of them than in many prayers 
after. You may ' by the Spirit ' then, at such a time, ' mortify the deeds 
of the flesh.' At such times improve your opportunity ; for, having the 
Spirit, you have all good things, and you may ask what you will and have 
it. And yet even then ask still for more of himself. 

Use 4. If the Holy Ghost be the great indweller in us, and graces but 
the manifestations of him, then let us shew forth the virtue of him that 
dwells in us, and be holy, as he is holy : as Cor. iiii. 16, 17, ' Know ye 
not that ye are the temple of God ; and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in 
you ? If any man derileth the temple of God, him shall God destroy ; for 
the temple of God is holy ; which temple ye are.' You see what a hei- 
nous thing it is to defile the heart or soul, because his temple. But elsewhere 
the apostle holds forth a stronger motive, even that the Spirit dwells in us, 
as the soul doth in the body, and the life we lead is his, not ours ; as the life 
of the body is not of the body, but of the soul in the body. This is the 
purport of that Gal. v. 25, ' If we live in the Spirit, we walk in the Spirit.' 
The question first is (for opening of it), What is meant by that phrase, • if 
ye live in the Spirit.' And how is it to be distinguished from ' walking in 
the Spirit ' ? If to live in the Spirit were meant to be active, lively, or 
striving in actions of spiritual life, to walk in the Spirit would be all one ; 
it would be but idem ex eodem ; for to live, in that sense, is to move and 
walk. But the genuine notion that interprets this is, that he intends a 
comparison : — 

1. Between the soul's indwelling in our bodies as a principle of life, and 
the Spirit's like indwelling as the fountain of spiritual life ; which that in the 
prophet also insinuates, Ezek. xxxvii. 14, ' I will put my Spirit into 
you, and ye shall live.' 2dly, That as walking or action of life spring from 
the soul's indwelling, so should an answerable walking from this of the 
Spirit's like indwelling. And so this expression, ' if ye live in the Spirit,' 
is a persuasion drawn from a common professed principle. His inference 
runs thus : Consider whom you have in you. The Spirit. And how ? Even 
as a constant principle of spiritual life. And to that end he doth dwell and 
abide in you, as your reasonable soul doth in your bodies. If you profess 
this, then live, and act, and walk, and shew forth graces worthy and suitable 
to so great and holy a Spirit, that hath vouchsafed and condescended thus 
to dwell in you, and become a fountain of such a life in you and to you. 


Every living thing acts according to that soul that is in it, according to 
the degree of vigour and activity, and kind of life communicated thereby. 
If you then profess to live in the Spirit, walk in the Spirit ; as if you should 
say to a sottish man (Cui anima inservit tantum pro sale), If you be a man, 
have a reasonable soul in you, act and carry yourself as a man, and be not 
not like a beast that perisheth. 

The only inquest will be, Why, if he intend this similitude of the soul's 
indwelling (as it is evident he doth), he should express it thus : ' If you 
live in the Spirit '? 

The answer is, It is true that we indeed, in common speech, rather use 
to say the soul lives in the body, than that the body lives in the soul ; 
though in reality it be true that the body rather lives in the soul, than the 
soul in the body, the soul being a principle of life unto the body, and not 
e contra. The apostle thereupon, to express perfect and real dependence 
of life spiritual upon this great Spirit, chooseth rather to say, ' Live you in 
the Spirit,' thereby importing this Spirit to be the same to us in respect of 
all grace and spiritual life communicated to us by union with, and indwelling 
in us, that the soul is to the body. And yet of Christ, Paul useth even 
that other phrase also (though only when he speaks of the activity of a 
Christian's life), that ' Christ lives in us,' Gal. ii. 20. 

Use 5. Grieve not this Holy Spirit. That expression imports the highest 
motive. Superiors use to be offended, familiar friends grieved ; the Spirit, 
considered as a superior, therefore to resist him is termed rebellion, : Isa. 
lxiv., ' They rebelled against his Holy Spirit.' But because he vouchsafes 
also to become a familiar friend (as hath been declared), therefore he is 
also said to be grieved. And if you have love in you, that will move you 
more, when you think him you grieve is God, Isa. xxvii. 13. To grieve 
Hot man only, but God, is load enough ; more than to say you offend him. 
Grieve not the Holy Spirit of God, is comparatively guarded with a trinity of 
articles, rb TvsD/ia ro\J Qzov rb ayiov. They shew his greatness and his goodness : 
his greatness, that he is the Spirit of God ; his goodness (1.), the Holy 
Spirit in himself; (2.) that he hath sealed you. "We would not grieve a 
brother, Prov. xxiii. 19, much less a father. You would not grieve a 
minister that watcheth over men's souls, as a substitute under the Holy 
Ghost (Heb. ziii.), much less himself. If thou hast done so, there is no way 
but to be grieved too, and as fire best takes out fire, so thy grief that of 
the Spirit's. 

I say no more but this to myself and you. There is a day a-coming in 
which you will need him and all his cordials ; therefore I speak to you in 
the words of Ecclesiasticus, which is the voice of that bodily self-love in us, 
and let it be of spiritual self-love also, ' Honour thy physician.' So treat 
this Holy Spirit, as thou wouldst one from whose prescription thou art in a 
continual course of physic, and none have skill but he. For when thou 
comest to die, his cordials must alone support, for none of any other's 
making will do thee any good. It is these, and these alone, must comfort, 
and carry thee to heaven. 

*#* The chapter ends abruptly, and is probably incomplete. In the folio edition 
there is at the bottom of the page the catchword ' And,' and the following page is 
left blank in all the copies that we have been able to consult. In other cases we 
have found pages blank in one copy, but not in another of the same edition, the 
omission being manifestly oaused by the carelessness of the printers. In this case, 
however, it is probable that the manuscript left by the author was unfinished. — Ed. 

Chap. I. J in ouk salvation. 78 


That there are tiro states or conditions through which God carries the elect: 
the state of nature, and the state of grace. — That the new birth is the pas- 
sage between them, which evidenceth the necessitg of the new birth, or regene- 
ration. — The reasons whg God hath so ordered it, that the generality of tlie 
elect, who live in riper years, should for some time remain in the state of 
nature before he renews them. — The uses of the doctrine. 

But after that tne kindness and love of God our Saviour toward man ap- 
peared, not by works of righteousness which ive have done, but according to 
his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the 
Holy Ghost; which lie shed on lis abundantly through Jesus Christ our 
Saviour ; thj&being justified by his grace, we should be made heirs accord- 
ing to the hope of eternal life. — Tit. III. 4-7. 


The words of the text explained ; from which, and other scriptures, it is 
proved that the elect are in a state of sin and ivrath before they are brought 
into a state of grace. 

This text doth afford these heads to be treated on : 

I. That there are two different states or conditions, which the elect of 
God, that are saved, pass through, between which regeneration is the pass. 

1. The one is their first state in which they were born, a state of bon- 
dage to sin, and obnoxious to instant damnation whilst they remain in it. 
This is clear in the words, and is premised to celebrate the mercy of it ; 
for having mentioned all men, in the very words afore, in exhorting to 
shew meekness to all men, it follows, for we ourselves, whom God hath 
now shewn mercy unto, and severed and called out from the rest of man- 
kind, were also sometimes disobedient, serving clivers lusts and pleasures. 
These words, ' we also sometimes,' both import, that as the rest of men 
remained in this woeful state, so themselves, tbough now saved, were once 
in the same state of bondage to sin, serving divers lusts, and thereby ob- 
noxious to damnation. 

2. The other state is of grace and salvation; therefore oppositely to that 
former state, he says, He hath saved us, justified us, and made us heirs of 
life. Us, who in the former estate had been heirs of hell, and children of 
wrath, as the opposition shews. 

H. Hence it follows that the new birth is the transitus, or passage 
between these two states, and the necessity thereof from thence may bo 


ILT. And, thirdly, that God, to magnify his grace, mercy, love, kindness 
(for all these are named) the more, leaveth many, or most of those he saveth, 
to remain and continue, for some time, in the first estate, before he doth 
regenerate them. For Paul, speaking of the commonalty and bulk of them 
in distinction from all other men, says, ' "We ourselves were sometimes dis- 
obedient,' and so remained and continued in that condition as well as other 
men. But at length, ' after the love of God appeared towards us' (says 
he), ' he saved us by regeneration,' and it all tends to shew as well the 
necessity as the mercy of it. 

IV. Hence then it is evident, that the eminentest mercy that God doth, 
or which may be judged to be vouchsafed us in our whole lives, or to eter- 
nity, is the laying the foundation in his first renewing, and regenerating us 
by his Spirit, as being the transitus, or the passage between both, by which 
we become translated from the one, and actually admitted into the other, 
of salvation : ' According to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of rege- 
neration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost, which he shed on us abun- 
dantly, through Jesus Christ our Saviour : that being justified by his grace, 
we should be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life.' 

V. Further, to set forth the mercy of it, there is presented here as great 
a solemnity at this business, as ever was or shall be found in any work 
done for us, namely, a joint concurrence, and yet distinct appearance, in a 
set and solemn conjunction of all three persons, Father, Son, and Holy 
Ghost. A happy constellation or conjunction of the planets falling out at 
the instant of the birth of some great prince (especially if you supposed it 
one of those greatest conjunctions, whereof but six have been since the crea- 
tion) how wonderful a prognostic would this be accounted by astrologers, 
of great and glorious events to follow and accompany him so born, and 
thus honoured and marked forth at his birth. But, lo ! a more glorious 
conjunction, of the three glorious persons in the heaven of heavens, of the 
three witnesses in heaven, as John terms them, solemnly meeting and 
appearing as witnesses at this great baptism, the only true baptism, the 
new birth of every believer ; called, therefore, ' the laver' or ' washing of 
regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost.' 1. The Father is implied 
in the 4th verse. After the love of our Saviour, he saved us by renewing 
us ; for God our Saviour, in the 4th verse, is clearly made a distinct per- 
son from Jesus Christ, our Saviour, ver. 6 ; so then the Father is meant. 
2. The Holy Ghost is mentioned, for it is called ' the renewing of the Holy 
Ghost,' was then shed on us abundantly. 3. Jesus Christ is named in 
those words, • through Jesus Christ our Saviour.' All this displays the 
greatness of the mercy of our regeneration, which Peter had only in general 
words expressed (1 Pet. i. 3) ; but Paul, you see, doth it more particularly 
here, though Peter indeed doth also express the authors of this work ; 
for there is first God, as in opposition to all created causes : ' Blessed be 
God, who hath begotten us.' In God all three persons are included, having 
a distinct and proper hand in it, though of all the thrae persons the Holy 
Ghost more eminently and specially. His name is taken into its very deno- 
mination. It is termed and denominated by the apostle, ' the renewing of 
the Holy Ghost,' as elsewhere the thing begotten : John hi., ' That which 
is born of the Spirit.' Lastly, in Christ, who is y.ar t£,oyJ,v, our Saviour, 
of all transactions of his for our salvation, his resurrection hath the most 
eminent influence into our new birth, as the instrumental cause ; and for 
that I must have recourse unto Peter, and fetch it out of him, ' who hath 
begotten us again by the resurrection of Jesus Christ.' 

Chap. I.] in our salvation. 75 

Obs. That there are two vastly differing estates of sin and damnation, of 
grace ami salvation, which the new hirth is the passage between, and the iriui- 
nitiis from the ono to the other. This I must premise, as the apostle doth, in 
order to shew both the absolute necessity of regeneration, and greatness of 
the mercy of it. Not this scripture alone, but all the epistles, givo eminent 
evidence to my assertion, and under several metaphors and expressions 
(wherein each delights in its variety) set forth maps and descriptions of 
these two estates, which argues this matter to have been, in the preachings 
of the apostles, a point of greatest moment. And this discrimination made 
is not to be understood as the setting out two sorts, or ranks, or destinies 
of men ; as if the one sort consisted only of persons that were reprobate, 
the other of elect, or as if none but reprobate should be understood to be 
in the estate of nature, and the elect to be such as were always in no other 
estate but the estate of grace. It is true indeed that all elect, sooner or 
later, are in the end translated into the estate of grace, or they could not be 
saved. And on the contrary, those whom God passeth by are left to con- 
tinue and persist in the state of sin and damnation to their deaths, and 
they die in their sins, as Christ speaks. But these two differences in man- 
kind are to be looked upon as two estates or conditions, whereof the one 
hath salvation, the other damnation, actually belonging to them at the 
present ; whilst any, either elect or they who are passed by, are respec- 
tively the subjects of either. And therefore we find this different condition 
exemplified in one and the same persons themselves of the elect, take them 
in several times of their lives, in that estate we usually call of nature ; but 
afterwards, through being renewed, they are in the estate of grace. Only 
what the apostle speaks in another yet the like case, that by God's ordina- 
tion holds in this, ' That is not first which is spiritual ' (or the estate of 
grace), 1 Cor. xv. 46, ' but that is first which is natural ; and afterwards 
that which is spiritual.' His reason (ver. 49) holding also in this, that we 
are to bear the image of the earthly, the first Adam first, and then the 
image of the heavenly. This almost every epistle to all the saints they 
wrote to, doth more or less indigitate : thus Rom. vi. 17, 18, ' But God 
be thanked, that ye were the servants of sin, but ye have obeyed from the 
heart that form of doctrine which was delivered you. Being then made 
free from sin, ye became the servants of righteousness.' And 1 Cor. vi. 
11, ' Such were some of you : but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but 
ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our 
God.' And Gal. iv. 8, ' There was a time ' (then) ' when ye knew not God,' 
and a now : ' After that now ye have known God, or rather are known of 
God.' And Eph. ii. 1,2,' And you hath he quickened, who were dead in 
sins and trespasses ; wherein in time past ye walked,' &c, and so he goes 
on to describe their natural condition. And Col. i. 21, ' And you, that 
were sometimes enemies in your minds by wicked works, yet now hath he 
reconciled ;' and chap. ii. 13, ' And you, being dead in your sins and the 
uncircumcision of your flesh, hath he quickened, having forgiven you all 
trespasses-.' Neither do they exemplify this in the same persons of the 
Gentile converts, but in the Jewish also ; who came in troops to John, to 
escape the wrath to come. And though himself was sanctified from the 
womb (Luke i. ver. 15) though conceived in the state of sin ; ' for that 
which is born of the flesh is flesh ;' yet the multitude of the rest of the 
elect lived in disobedience until riper years, ver. 16, 17, ' And many of the 
children of Israel shall he turn to the Lord their God. And he shall go 
before him in the spirit and power of Elias,' to turn them, namely through 


his ministry. And accordingly our Peter, writing to the Jews, that had 
lived in the bosom of that church, speaks of them as of those who before 
this their generation had a former estate, which he terms ' their vain con- 
versation,' ver. 18, and (ver 14) calls that estate ' the former lusts of their 
ignorance ;' so terming their former estate, from the want of saving know- 
ledge, when their lusts ruled, which now having escaped, they were made 
partakers of a divine nature : 1 Peter i. 4, having now ' purified their 
hearts, being born again of incorruptible seed,' ver. 22, 23. And more 
expressly he says of them (ii. 10), that they he thus wrote to (who were 
by outward character the people of God) ' in time past were not a people, 
but are now the people of God ; which had not obtained mercy, but have 
now obtained mercy.' It was a state wherein actually, and before God as 
a judge, or according to the judgment the Word pronounced of them (by 
which God will judge all the world,) they were not a people ; though before 
God, as God, they were elected, and his chosen people. The other is a 
state of grace and mercy, ' but now ' (says he) ' have obtained mercy ;* 
and still regeneration or conversion is set out as the passover, as the equi- 
noctial line to be passed, that divides between both climates, the one of 
darkness and the shadow of death ; the other a contrary climate of light 
and glory : so the words just afore intimate, ' who hath called us out of 
darkness into his marvellous light.' And as Peter speaks thus of the Jews 
as well as Gentiles, so Paul also having spoken (Eph. ii. 1) to the Gentiles 
(compare ver. 11): 'You were dead in sins; wherein in time past ye 
walked ;' he turns his speech from them to himself and his countrymen 
the Jews, and says of all the generality of the Jews then converted, ' Among 
whom also we all had our conversation in times past in the lusts of our 
flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind ; and were by 
nature the children of wrath, even as others.' By those others he means 
the Gentiles, and he evidently speaks of what they had been in their con- 
versation unto riper years. 

Divines usually term the one the state of nature, as the other the state 
of grace ; and they give them these terms warrantably from the Scriptures. 

1. For the terming a man's condition after regeneration the state of 
grace, the apostle doth it expressly : Bom. v. 2, ' By faith' (saith he) ' we 
have access into this grace wherein we stand ;' that is, into this station. 
It is a perpetual and standing condition of favour, when once we have 
admission or access into it, which by faith there, and by regeneration here 
in this text of Titus, we are said to have ; he speaks as we do, or rather we 
as he, calling it a state of grace. And so oppositely the other a state of 
nature, which you have as fully and as expressly mentioned, Eph. ii. For 
when he would sum up what was that estate of both Jews and Gentiles 
fore-spoken of, he, as in a general conclusion, speaks thus, ' We were by 
nature children of wrath, as well as others.' His meaning is not only that 
both were alike in such an estate when born, as restraining that phrase 
' by nature,' merely unto what they had been by birth, and so only to their 
birth-sin (though that must be intended as the source or spring) ; but he 
speaks too of that race and whole time of their conversation, and course 
run, wherein they fulfilled the lusts they had by nature (as is evident) until 
quickened and saved. He termeth that whole stage they ran, and that 
scene of life, a condition of nature, as acting all that while according to 
the principles and swing of nature, and having nought but nature in them, 
afore grace came and wrought in them. And therefore, as Erasmus hath 
well observed, it is opposed to that which follows (ver. 5) ' By grace ye are 

Chap. I.] in our salvation. 77 

saved,' showing in the former what naturally without grace, and until grace, 
their condition was, for sin and wrath. And this interpretation, that style 
of the apostle given to every man in that estate confirms, terming him, 
1 Cor. ii. 14, ' a natural man,' in distinction from a spiritual, till made a 
spiritual man by regeneration : ' That which is born of the Spirit is spirit.' 
During all which time they remain (till new-born) ' children of wrath ; ' 
that is, whose portion is wrath, and they exposed to it, during such their 
condition. And similarly to this sense, that this phrase ' by nature' should 
involve the whole time from the birth, as well as the sinfulness of our 
birth itself, do other scriptures speak when they would describe and set 
forth that natural condition : Ps. lviii. 3, ' They are gone astray from the 
womb.' And it is the natural condition afore and without grace the 
psalmist there speaks of. For he not only says they were corrupt in or by 
the womb, but all along from the womb, thereby expressing their whole 
state. The like you have Gen. vi., ' from their youth.' 

Now when we say men's condition afore regeneration is all that while a 
state of sin and wrath, as that of grace is the contrary, I desire all men to 
consider what that imports. Guilt of sin is one thing (the best are guilty), 
but a state of sin is a further thing. Corruption of nature to be in a man 
is one thing, the state of nature is another : to be worth;/ of death is one 
thing, so every man in sinning is ; but to be in a state of death is another ; 
it is to be sentenced and adjudged to die, or as Christ speaks, condemned 
already : John iii. 18, ' He that believeth on him is not condemned : but 
he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed 
in the name of the only begotten Son of God ;' which is all one to say, 
He that hath not such a faith as renews the heart (for of regeneration 
Christ hath discoursed, ver. 3-5 of the chapter) is in a state of condemna- 
tion, so that he needs no other sentence. There wants nothing but execu- 
tion ; for which how soon a writ will come out he knows not. As in the 
canon law for some transgressions a man stood excommunicated ipso facto 
upon the committing, as murder, &c, it depended not upon a new sentence. 
Here his state makes him instantly and immediately obnoxious to death. 
Every sin he sins not only deserves death, but it is ' unto death ;' not 
only the thing is worthy of it, but by reason of his state it redounds to the 
person, and binds him over to death, which is the true import of that phrase, 
' A child of wrath by nature ;' as a man that stands sentenced and adjudged, 
condemned to die, is by a Jew termed a child of death : 2 Sam. xii. 5, 
' This man is a child of death.' For David as a king did at that time 
pronounce it of him, as we translate it, that he should ' certainly die.' And 
Christ, on the contrary, is termed a ' Son of love,' Col. i. 13 ; we translate 
it ' his dear Son,' but it is biag ayunqg, noting forth a perpetuated state of 
grace and favour borne to him, which Christ calleth ' abiding in his Father' 
love,' John xv. 2 ; that is, he remains in a perpetual state of grace and 
favour ; and in the like sense these are termed ' children of wrath,' as 
abiding in it. 



That it is by the new birth that an elect soul is transplanted from a state of 
sin and wrath into a state of grace. — That it ought therefore to be our ear- 
nest inquiry, whether we are regenerated or no. — That though we are by 
nature the children of wrath, yet our case is not desperate, because this state 
is alterable. 

I shall now evidence the assertion, that regeneration is the only altera- 
tion of this estate of death, and so make way for application. 

A state is a permanent fixed condition, whether of good or evil, con- 
Jtinued without cessation or interruption, until the legal terms of that con- 
l dition be altered. This might be in many instances exemplified. I will 
only take such as the apostle, discoursing of these two states (Rom. vi. 7) 
hath illustrated them to us by, which do withal directly concern the doc- 
trine in hand. The Romans they had servants, which were slaves to them, 
and some by birth, over whom they had the power of life and death. The 
condition of such was a permanent condition, and so is that of apprentice 
servants among us, till the terms of that condition are altered. If they 
ran away, yet their condition altered not, they might take them wherever 
they found them. The terras of that alteration were either manumission 
or expiration by death. Now, Paul professeth, by this instance of this 
outward condition among men, to set out those other we are now upon : 
ver. 19, 'I speak after the manner of men,' saith he; that is, I use this 
allusion to express the difference of those two states you once were and 
now are in ; ver. 17, 18, ' You were the servants of sin, but now, made free 
from sin, ye become the servants of righteousness.' Now, then, to see 
how upon regeneration the terms of this state and condition are altered, 
the apostle tells us that their hearts having been new moulded, cast into 
that mould of doctrine of the gospel (s-utov tidayo^g iig ov va^dodrjTs) into 
which they were delivered (so ver. 17), and they being ingrafted into Christ, 
and the likeness of his death and resurrection (ver. 3-5, &c, whereby they 
became dead to sin and were made men new risen again), therefore by the 
law of nations the terms of that condition were altered, ' and he that is 
dead,' saith the apostle, ' is freed ' from his master ; ver. 6, 7, ' Our old 
man being crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, 
that henceforth we should not serve sin. For he that is dead is freed from 
sin ; ' and we being new raised from the dead by Christ's resurrection. 
Look then, as if you could suppose a Roman slave had been killed and 
dead, and then raised again to a new life, the law must have freed him 
from that former state, for he was now a man of another world ; so a man 
being freed from sin is also freed from a state of death, and he is said to 
pass from death to life, as it is expressed once by Christ : John v* 24, 
' He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath ever- 
lasting life, and shall not come into condemnation ; but is passed from 
death to life.' And as it is expressed by John, 1 John hi. 14, which is a 
second allusion to the state of a man adjudged to die in one kingdom, in 
which is absolute tyranny, and no pardon to be had, but certain death ; 
wherein, whilst he remains, he is perpetually in a state of death, which 
every moment may befall him, and in the end certainly will. Now, what 
alters the terms of such a man's condition ? Do but suppose there is an- 
other region, where grace and mercy only reigns, and which invites men 

Chap. II.] in our salvation. 79 

to come over to it, with promises of life and pardon ; when ho arrives there 
his state is changed. These are the two estates (Rom. v. 21), • That as 
sin hath reigned unto death, even so might grace reign through righteous- 
ness unto eternal life by Jesus Christ our Lord.' Take a man that is a 
servant to sin : sin is said to reign over him unto death, and whilst he re- 
mains in it he is a son of death, a subject of death ; and tbat kingdom 
shews no mercy. But regeneration, and such a faith as regenerateth, is a 
bridge or ship to carry him over into another dominion of grace, ' where 
grace reigns through righteousness unto eternal life,' and welcomes all that 
will come into its dominions, and takes them for ever into its protection. 
And if grace means to save a man, it prepares this ark for him, even ' the 
washing of regeneration,' whereof baptism is the seal : 1 Pet. iii. 20, 21, 
' As in the days of Noah, when the ark was preparing, wherein few, that 
is, eight souls, were saved by water. So the like figure unto it, viz., bap- 
tism, doth now save us (not the putting away the filth of the flesh, but the 
answer of a good conscience towards God), by the resurrection of Jesus 
Christ.' It is not the outward but the inward baptism saves, and still by the 
resurrection of Jesus Christ : 1 Cor. vi. 11, 'Ye are washed, ye are sanc- 
tified, ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of 
God.' Sanctified by the Spirit, and justified by the name of Christ, and 
being thus wafted over to the other side of the shore, the devil, sin, and 
hell, and death cannot reach you : ' You are not under the law,' the cove- 
nant of creation, by virtue of which sin and death reigns in the first estate 
(for ' the strength of sin is the law '), ' but under grace ;' that is, the 
dominion of grace, Rom. vi. 14, where Christ also reigns, chap. v. 21. 
The like you have Col. i. 12, 13, speaking of their conversion, and giving 
thanks to God for it : ' Giving thanks ' (says he) ' unto the Father, which 
hath made us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light : 
Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated 
us into the kingdom of his dear Son,' where we are safe for ever. And to 
the same purpose he speaks, Rom. vi. 9-11, ' Knowing that Christ being 
raised from the dead dieth no more ; death hath no more dominion over 
him. For in that he died, he died unto sin once : but in that he liveth, 
he liveth unto God. Likewise reckon ye also yourselves to be dead indeed 
unto sin, but alive unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord.' He would 
have them reckon and account themselves, as*for the permanency of that new 
state, in that very same condition Christ is in, but then to take heed to 
walk accordingly : ver. 12, ' Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal 
bodies, that ye should obey it in the lusts thereof.' This is the natural, 
supreme law in the hearts of the subjects of that kingdom, and which re- 
generation hath written therein. 

There is another similitude, whereby the apostle sets out these two states 
in their fore-mentioned fixed settledness, and this alteration from the one to 
the other (chap vii.), and it is that of marriage, which with us, you know, 
is a settled, fixed condition for life, till by death the terms of that condition 
be altered. Now, what says the apostle ? Rom. vii. 2, 3, ' The woman who 
hath an husband is bound by the law to her husband so long as he liveth ; 
but if the husband be dead, she is loosed from the law of her husband. So 
then if, while her husband liveth, she be married to another man, she shall 
be called an adulteress : but if her husband be dead, she is free from that 
law ; so that she is no adulteress, though she be married to another man.' 
By the covenant of the first creation (under which a man for ever stands 
till married to Christ), the heart of man was married to the law, and so 


subjected to the power of it, as to its natural husband ; as the wife by the 
law of creation is said to be to the husband (Gen. hi.), and among other 
things, to beget children according to his likeness on her. Man falls from 
God, yet still the marriage holds, but through the disease of nature, and 
perverseness of the wife, children that are contrary to the holy law are 
brought forth by her, and no other, which, together with herself, are sub- 
jected to the punishment of that law, ' Thou shalt die the death.' But now, 
says he, if either we die ©r the law die, then we may marry another, and 
so the terms of that condition and estate of subjection alters ; and 
thus, says he, it is here, ver. 4, • Wherefore, my brethren, ye also are be- 
come dead to the law by the body of Christ ; that ye should be married to 
another, even to him who is raised from the dead, that we should bring 
forth fruits unto God.' So then regeneration, which consists in the morti- 
fication of lusts, and quickening us with Christ, and faith that marries us to 
him, makes the alteration ; and the resurrection of Christ follows us still. 

Let me, ere I go off from this point, apply it a little. We are all here 
in the presence of God, and it is certain that we all stand under one of 
these estates before God this day. We are all subjects belonging to one of 
these dominions, of death or life. And it is as certain that we all once were 
in that condition of nature, and so of wrath, as sure as we are men. And 
it is also sure that nothing doth or can make the alteration out of the one 
into the other but true regeneration, which alone, by God's ordination, 
alters the condition of sin and death, as it is a permanent estate. For, to 
add this reason to the former, as the first birth alone was the foundation of 
that first estate, so this second birth alone is the entrance and access into 
this other estate of grace. 

And now then, whether regeneration be savingly wrought in us or no, is 
a question the best man may ask his own soul ; for God will not be mocked, 
or be put off with anything outward or inward that is below it. As Rom. 
iii. 23, ' For we ah have sinned, and come short of the glory of God.' And 
it is as certain, that if we die without obtaining of it, we are undone and 
lost for ever, and go to hell, as sure as we are now ahve. 

Use 1. Now then, first, for examination of our estates : consider that 
this being such a permanent condition, both that no change but into true 
holiness makes the alteration ; and withal, corrupt nature will bear many 
elevations and refinements which are not the divine nature, it concerns us 
to make a very strict inquiry. It is certain God tries in several degrees 
how far corrupt nature will be refined, and yet fall short of the glory of 
God. You know what elevation Socrates was of among the heathens, and 
Paul among the Jews, by the addition of the light of the law, Phil, iii., and 
how strict the young man in the gospel was in pharisaical observances ; and 
how far advanced above these, those are among Christians who are enlight- 
ened and taste of the powers of the world to come, and yet fall short, Heb. 
vi. 4-6. Now, suppose any one man should be by God gradually re- 
fined, and run through all such alterations as corrupt nature remaining still 
is capable of. Suppose a profane epicure were turned first a Stoic or a 
Socrates, then, with all his heroic virtues, turned a Jew, and embraced that 
religion ; yet Christ hath said it of the one and the other, ' Except your 
righteousness exceed the righteousness of the Pharisees, ye cannot go to 
heaven; ' yea, de facto, many devout heathens did turn to the Jewish pro- 
fession (in which was salvation then, John iv. 22, as in the Christian faith 
now), and yet of them Chi'ist pronounceth (Mat. xxiii. 15) that they are 
twofold more the children of hell than before. If, in like manner, the most 

Chap. II. J in our salvation. 81 

devout and righteous Turk should now turn Christian merely in outward 
profession, and embrace all the articles of that profession, his condition 
would be but parallel to the former. Well, but then let this man be ele- 
vated further, lei him receive the word with joy, as the stony ground; yea, 
let him cast off all outward evils, as the thorny ground did the tops of all 
its thorns that grew above ground, only the roots remaining not plucked up, 
let him escape ra /mius/xutu, ' the gross defilements of the world,' 2 Peter 
ii. 20, ' through the knowledge of Christ ; ' let him ' escape the corruptions 
that are in the world through lust ; ' and in a word, let him further (as in 
Heb. vi. 4, 5) be ' enlightened, and taste of the heavenly gift, and be made 
partaker of the Holy Ghost, and taste the good word of God, and the powers 
of the world to come ; ' yet if he is not partaker of the divine nature (spoken 
of 2 Peter i. 4), whereby he mortifies the inward lusts themselves ; if he 
have not the divine image stamped on him, and made a nature in him, and 
child-like dispositions of love to God wrought, it is certain the terms of that 
condition he was born in are not altered. Like baser metals, corrupt nature 
will suffer many sublimations, and yet be base metal still ; and until it comes 
to be turned into the true elixir, that changeth it into gold, the state of man 
is not changed. Men may run away from their master- sins (as servants 
from their masters) when their lusts are not crucified, their indentures not 
cancelled, and so long the terms of their estate is not altered, but sin 
fetchsth them again. Men in prison may be taken out of the dungeon and 
put into more open rooms, and there have their bolts knocked off, and from 
thence be brought to the grate to look out abroad, and see the happiness of 
them at liberty, and have communion with them, and so not to be far from 
the kingdom of God (as Christ said to the scribe, Mark xii. 34). Yea, in 
some prisons, as in the Tower, he may have liberty to walk abroad in the 
walks and open air, and yet still be a prisoner. Yea, suppose he makes an 
escape, yet still the terms of his estate, as prisoner, is not altered, till he 
have that to shew for it which gives him a discharge by him that is the 
supreme judge or creditor ; and so it is here in this case. Again, take ice 
and melt it ; when it is water, heat it ; from thence boil it through fire or put 
hot irons into it ; yet still it is water, and retains its form in predominancy, 
and will return to its coldness again. So will corrupt nature, if the divine 
nature be not begotten in it. But if thou findest the least spark of that 
divine nature struck out of thy heart, it will in the end enkindle the whole 
man, and convert all to its own nature, and Christ will never quench, but 
bring it forth to victory. 

Use 2. Then in the second place consider, that even from a man's birth 
this estate of sin and death is a fixed, settled, continued estate, without in- 
terruption, until the change specified be wrought. And go home and think 
how formidable a thing it is to be found therein, or continue in it but one 
night longer. For ' thou fool ' (says Christ, Luke xii. 20), ' this night may 
thy soul be required of thee.' And that it is such a permanent estate of 
sin and wrath, is that which, when a man's eyes are opened, strikes the 
terror into him ; and thus the apostles, in their writings, represent men's 
conditions to them. They speak not to them only of the guilt of such and 
such sins, but of a state of sin and death ; which language the primitive 
Christians were most sensible of, as that which still roused and awakened 
them to consider their estates ; for the danger thereof was of common ap- 
prehension. See how the apostle expresses it, 1 Cor. xv. 17, ' If so, then 
ye are yet in your sins.' He speaks of it as of a fixed estate : you are in 
your sins ; and you are yet in them ; to this hour, as being a continued 

VOL. VI. f 


estate, and that wherein the extremity of all evil lies. It is as if you should 
say of a man tied to a stake in the midst of ten thousand barrels of ( gun- 
powder, He is in the fire (as Jude also speaks), and ready to be blown up 
every moment. And thus Christ also expresseth it, ' Ye shall die in your 
sins,' John viii. 21. Thus also Peter speaks to Simon Magus, Acts viii. 
21, 23, ' I perceive ' (says he) ' that thou hast neither part nor lot in this 
matter ;' no interest in this ' common salvation,' whereof we profess our- 
selves partakers. ' I perceive that thou art in the bond of iniquity, and in 
the gall of bitterness ;' that is, thou remainest fixed in it, as in a permanent 
condition. And to the same purpose John speaks when he says, 1 John v. 19, 
• The whole world lieth in wickedness,' as in its proper state and element. 
And (1 John iii. 14, and chap. ii. 9) his phrase expresseth a continuation 
or running on of it from the first : ' He that hates his brother is in darkness 
until now.' And ver. 11, 'He that hateth his brother is in darkness, and 
walketh in darkness, and knoweth not whither he goeth, because that dark- 
ness hath blinded his eyes.' That phrase, until now, is as if he had said, 
Let that man consider that he is not only in an estate of death and dark- 
ness at the present, that it is his present condition ; but that it hath been 
the condition he hath continued in, without interruption, all along the 
whole space of his life hitherto. And how dreadful must that be ! If there 
were a narrow bridge of ice made over the vast ocean, and no island or spot 
of dry ground all along, and a man from his birth had been set upon it, and 
had slid and furiously run upon it in the dark, and for twenty or thirty 
vears made a continued journey on it even till now, and were now in the 
midst of it ; and at length light should rise and come upon him, to see how 
far he had advanced hitherto, and how he was in the height of continual 
danger of falling into the sea, either by the bridge's breaking under him, 
or through his own stepping aside : imagine what dread would strike that 
man ! And yet this is the case of many that hear me this day. Now John 
uttered that speech to strike their hearts who had been professors of the 
principles of the Christian religion in those times ; of which religion the 
most frequent and familiar principle was the infinite difference of these two 
estates of the sons of men. The sense and apprehension of which (he 
knew) they who were now apostatised, and hated those godly persons who 
continued to profess it, carried in their bosoms and consciences along with 
them ; insomuch as they had this abiding conviction, that if they were found 
to be in an unregenerate condition, they were, notwithstanding their pro- 
fession, in the most desperate and deplorable estate, and darkness ' until 
now.' And however they were apt presumptuously to bear themselves up 
with this, that they once were enlightened, and had a saving work upon 
them when first they entered into this profession, and therefore must have 
so still, he plainly tells them they had remained in this darkness ' until 
now ;' for they never had a true work of regeneration to make an alteration 
of their condition, and so the dismal account of that estate had run on to 
this very day. And a great scripture this is with me, for its holding forth, 
that whoever is found in an unregenerate state at any time hath ever been 
in it ; and so consequently there is no intercision of grace, nor falling from 
it. Of such as fall away, the apostle professeth that they never had true 
grace ; but though enlightened, yet falling away, do shew that they have 
been, during all their time, unregenerate. To this also the 19th verse 
accords. ' They went out from us, but they were not of us ; for if they had 
been of us, they would no doubt have continued with us : but they went 
out, that they might be made manifest that they were not all of us.' As it 


is a true saying, If once in a stato of grace, then over so for the time to 
come ; so it is as true, that this man who is in the state of nature and 
wrath hath ever hecn in it for times past, even until now. So as such a 
man (and let every man consider it), though he may have many changes in 
the time of his pilgrimage, and may take up himself, and commit fewer and 
smaller sins in his middle age than in his youth ; or in his middle age than 
in his old age * (for it is not necessary that to continue in that estate he 
should every day wax worse and worse) ; yet if he be not truly regenerate, 
he is still in one and the same hold, and so all the sins that he hath, or 
doth commit, or shall continue to commit every moment, they all shall 
centre in him, as being still in such an estate wherein an obligation stands 
in force against him for every sin he hath at any time put his hand unto. 
The power of corruption puts him on to sin, and then the guilt of sin binds 
him over to death. Every motion of sin from his cradle belongs to that 
estate. He is ' in the bond of iniquity,' go where he will, whether he 
sleeps or wakes ; and all his sins are as fresh to God as if they had been 
this moment committed. Time wears not out the guilt of any, but rather 
helps to make up the treasure of wrath greater (as in debts time adds an 
increase), and all that time also the wrath of God abides upon him, and is 
ready to fall upon his head every moment ; and God is angry with him all 
that time. ' He is angry with the wicked every day,' as the psalmist speaks, 
Ps. vii. 11. And this brings eternity upon a man ; and all put together 
will amaze the stoutest heart that ever was. And yet who almost considers 
these things ? 

Use 3. And this may also discover some usual deceits, even of the wisest 
men. They flatter themselves that all are sinners, and they are only 
sinners as well as others. But they consider not a state of sin, which 
themselves and most of men are in. And if they hear the state of nature 
mentioned, they understand it only of that condition they were in when 
conceived or bom, but they think that it is done away at baptism ; and 
never imagine that it still runs on, in omne volnbilis avian. They also set 
themselves to repent, and turn from this or that sin, but seek not a change 
of state, a general and universal change. And so they think they may 
deal with mercy well enough for any particular sin they live in, acknowledg- 
ing themselves worthy of death for it, as all are for the least sin ; but con- 
sider not that they remain adjudged to death, and abide in death for every 
sin, and that damnation sleeps not, but is coming upon them. The great 
inquest at the latter day will be, What state thou wert found in ? whether 
1 found ' (as Paul's phrase is, Philip, iii. 9) ' in Christ, 3 or found in thy 
sins ? v~ 

Use 4. The only comfort to the sons of men that find themselves in taht 
state is, that although it is a continuation of sin and wrath upon man whilst 
he is in it, yet it is alterable. It is not therefore said to be a state because 
it is unchangeable, as that of the devils is, ' who are kept in everlasting 
chains,' who ' abode not in the truth, but left their first estate ' (as Christ 
and Jude speak), and who are now in irrecoverable misery. No ; there is 
grace and mercy in this text, Tit. iii. 4-6. There is also a Holy Spirit 
spoken of, that may yet renew thee, and alter this estate of thine. But 
know assuredly, nothing else will alter it. 

There are two pleas upon which carnal men build the hopes of their sal- 
vation, though they go on in the sinfulness of their own hearts, and die 
without this work wrought in them. 

* Qu. ' in his old age than in his middle age ' ? — Ed. 


1. They plead God's infinite grace and mercy. Who (say they) shall 
limit his mercy ? He may pardon me however, if he pleaseth. 

2. They say Christ hath died, and perfectly wrought salvation for them ; 
and they cast themselves upon his death, to he saved by it. 

Well but here are two things (in 1 Peter i. 3), that do answer both these 
deceitful reasonings of carnal hearts. 

1. God is merciful, it is true ; yea more, the text tells you he is ' abun- 
dantly merciful ;' but withal it tells you, that when he shews mercy he 
begets a new nature (' who according to his abundant mercy hath begotten 
us'), so that if ever he means to shew thee mercy, he will shew it herein, 
and hereby, even in ' begetting thee anew,' that so he may shew thee mercy 
according to the wise counsel of his will. Thus also in Titus iii. 5, ' Ac- 
cording to his mercy hath he saved us.' But how ? ' By the renewing 
of the Holy Ghost.' And in Jer. iii. 19, 20, God himself professeth how 
that else he cannot save them. Men think that for God to save them, is 
no more but only to put forth a prerogative act of pardon and shewing 
mercy ; as a king doth when he pardons a traitor ; but God always does 
more, for when he pardons any one, he makes a friend and favourite of 
him, a son and heir, in whom he may delight ; therefore, together with par- 
doning him, he also renews him. 

2. And for Christ's death ; even that also will not save thee, without 
this new begetting ; and the text, 1 Peter i. 3, will warrant this too. For 
consider but this, that he rose again as well as died. Xow as he died for 
the pardoning of your sins, so he rose again to regenerate and beget you 
again. Therefore says the text, 1 Peter i. 3, ' Who hath begotten us again 
by the resurrection of Jesus Christ.' If you will have the benefit of his 
death, you must find the power and virtue of his resurrection in sancti- 
fying you, as Paul speaks, Phil. iii. 10. ' And you who are dead in sins and 
trespasses,' must be ' quickened with him,' unto a new life of grace, if 
ever you be saved. Both these you have in Eph. ii. 4-6, ' God, who is 
rich in mercy, hath quickened us together with Christ, even when we were 
dead in sins and trespasses, and hath raised us up together,' &c. And this 
new birth, or holiness, necessarily accompanies pardon, even as Christ's 
resurrection followed his death ; and his death extends to save no more 
than his resurrection puts forth a power to beget. As, if Christ had not 
personally risen, we had been still in our sins, so if Christ be not risen in 
thee, thou art still in thy sins, and wilt die in them : Bom. vi. 12-14, 
' Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, that ye should obey it in 
the lust thereof : neither yield ye your members as instruments of unright- 
eousness unto sin : but yield yourselves unto God, as those that are alive 
from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness unto 
God. For sin shall not have dominion over you : for ye are not under the 
law, but under grace.' And chap. vii. 4, ' Wherefore, my brethren, ye 
also are become dead to the law by the body of Christ ; that ye should be 
married to another, even to him who is raised from the dead, that we should 
bring forth fruits unto God.' Which last place confirms that former reason 
given, that we being to be married to Christ, and he being to be risen from 
the dead, we must be made like him in a new resurrection. 

Chap. III.] in our salvation. 85 


TJiat all God's elect do not indeed, before their regeneration, remain in that 
state of sin and ivrath, as is evident in the case of infants.* 

The groat God, for holy and glorious ends, but more especially to give 
demonstration, or to make appear his love and kindness, his mercy and 
grace, hath ordered it so, that the generality of elect that live to riper years, 
should for some time remain in a condition of sin and wrath, and then he 
renews them, and turns them to himself. I have in the former chapters 
proved the matter of fact. 

My present business is to consider the design of God herein, and to what 
ends and purposes, and for what reasons he hath thus appointed such then- 

I must premise something by way of limitation, and explication, to pre- 
vent exceptions against this truth. 

1. My meaning is not, that God regenerates none but such as are grown 
up to riper years. I should be injurious to multitudes of his elect, if I so 
asserted. But as infants are capable of all the essentials of regeneration, 
so, dc facto, it is evident-that he regenerates multitudes of them whilst such. 
For in the Old Testament the promise being indefinitely uttered for time 
or age as well as person — ' I will be the God of thee and thy seed,' Gen. 
xvii. 7 ; ' And I will circumcise thy heart, and the hearts of thy seed,' Deut. 
xxx. 6 — and circumcision (which has the sign and seal of that circum- 
cision of the heart mentioned in the promise, and so the seal of that pro- 
mise itself, and of the performance), being by God's command applied to 
infants, whereof multitudes whilst such died, necessarily imports that there 
are some of that age, whom God had in his eye, whom he inwardly circum- 
cised ; or else the promise and seal to them had been in vain. And if it 
had took place in none but those that lived until they grew up to riper 
years, then circumcision would have been deferred unto that age, as that 
wherein God's ordination had only been to regenerate mankind, namely, 
all when come to such or such an age, grown up, and not before. And 
circumcision is the seal of that righteousness, the same righteousness which 
believers grown up have imputed to them (as Rom. iv. 11, the apostle, in- 
stancing in Abraham, says), ' He received the sign of circumcision, a seal 
of the righteousness of faith ;' which words do not assert circumcision to 
have been a seal of faith or righteousness only unto them that actually do 
believe, but the purpose of them was to signify and exemplify what right- 
eousness it was that circumcision was the seal of, which he exemplifies in 
Abraham, saying that it was the same that Abraham the father had im- 
puted to him, and which believers lay hold on, which is called the right- 
eousness of faith ; because revealed from faith to faith, and so apprehended 
and made known to us that are of riper years by faith. And so hereby he 
gives us to understand that elect infants circumcised, the seed of Abraham, 
dying, had and might have the very same righteousness which we and 
Abraham had by faith, and which circumcision did seal up to his faith, even 
as well as they have the actual application of that outward seal as much as 
Abraham had. And indeed the half of mankind dying whilst infants, it may 
be well supposed that as great a portion, at least for number, are found 
amongst the seed that die, as experience shewed was found among them 
that lived, and so were inwardly circumcised. And those promises, ' I will 
* This does not appear to be a correct summary. — Ed. 


be the God of thee and thy seed ;' and ' I will circumcise the heart of thy 
seed ;' being spoken (as they are apparently) indefinitely of any age, one 
as well as another, who shall dare to limit them to years of understanding 
only ? And if indefinitely for age, then it may as well be supposed, that 
there is no time, or age, in the whole series of man's life, but there will 
be found instances of some of Abraham's seed that were therein regene- 
rated, some in one, some in another ; even as there is not the least moment 
in the thread of man's life, but some or other have expired therein. And 
again, shall we limit it to infants of eight days old, to exclude all infants 
dying before eight days ? Surely no. The real intent was otherwise. As 
women were not excluded from the promise, though not circumcised per- 
sonally ; to whom yet the promise held, as well as unto males ; and the 
female sex were representatively circumcised in the males ; so infants 
(take it still indefinitely of what age, yea, of what moment's standing you 
will, from their conception), were represented in the circumcision of those 
infants of eight days old. This deferring and staying of it then, and this 
representative circumcision at eight days old of some, was ordained typically 
to hold forth that representation of all the elect which that ~Q3, that strong 
male child Christ, the first-born of them, was to bear of all the seed, he 
standing in their stead. 

And it is to no purpose to say, that circumcision sealed up to them only 
the promise of Canaan ; for beside that the promise to Abraham and his 
seed was one and the same, also infants that died (as half of mankind die 
when infants) enjoyed so little, some not at all, the benefit of that promise, 
* that thy days may be long in the land which the Lord thy God hath given 
thee,' as it were ridiculous to assert circumcision was applied to them to 
seal up that promise only. 

In the New Testament, we find that grace and all the privileges thereof 
are now more extendible, as to nations (' Go teach all nations,' not the 
Jews only) so in like manner unto all sorts of persons, more than these to 
whom the grace and dispensations of grace in the Old Testament could be 
supposed to extend ; and therefore if to infants then, so now. And it is 
observable that the first in the catalogue of the New Testament (both 
according to Christ's account, Mat. xi. 11, and also that of Zacharias) was 
John, who, as the first-fruits to sanctify in a more special manner the lump 
of infants, was filled with the Holy Ghost in his mother's womb, Luke i. 15. 

Christ himself, who sanctified our nature, to the end that we might be 
sanctified (John xvii. 19, Heb. ii. 11), representatively sanctified every age 
of man he went through, as well as those ages or years of man's life he fell 
short of. Now therefore he was sanctified in the womb, to sanctify some 
infants in the womb. He was holy when born, even because some infants 
when first born might be then sanctified. And the same Lord Jesus pro- 
nounceth of infants, that ' Of such is the kingdom of God.' 

Nor can it be supposed that he sanctifies only such infants that in his 
decrees he had appointed to die when infants ; for when Christ spake that 
last fore-cited speech, it was upon occasion of such infants being brought 
to him, who might be supposed to have lived up to riper years, and it being 
intended a direction to the apostles as ministers, with respect to infants 
coming or being brought to them, to be sure they were not first to judge 
who were to live and who were to die, and to regard the latter only, there- 
fore Christ speaks indefinitely. And add to this, John Baptist, who lived 
to riper years, was yet when an infant sanctified. 

And if we take a great lump of Christians that are grown up, some few 

Chap. III.] in our salvation. 87 

will be found sanctified from their infancy, insomuch as they dare not say 
but they had workings of grace on them ever since they can remember, 
and that they had gracious dispositions (though proportioned to that age) 
mingled with the dawnings and springings of reason in them. This expe- 
rience shews, and therefore you must not take this doctrine universally 
true, that of these that livo to years of discretion, none are sanctified when 

Yet in the text it is more generally and ordinarily true concerning those 
elect who live, that God (in whose hands are the times and seasons of 
regenerating men, as well as of all things else, Acts xvii.) hath appointed 
and ordered their month (as the prophet speaks) or times of bringing forth 
to be, w T hen grown up to years of discretion. And besides instances out 
of the apostles' epistles, many passages in the Old and New Testament 
evidence that thus it was even in those that lived in Zion, and were well 
educated in the church of God, and yet needed regeneration, and were rege- 
nerated when of years of discretion, or grown up. 

In the Old Testament, David (Ps. li. 12) desires God ' restore to him 
the joy of his salvation, that he might teach sinners God's ways' (not hea- 
thens only, but sinners among whom he lived), ' and that they might be 
converted unto him,' ver. 13. And though men scoff to hear of converts 
in the church, yet Isaiah tells us of ' converts in Sion,' Isa. i. 27. 

In the New Testament we have the example of Timothy, who though 
brought up by good parents, and taught the faith by his grandmother and 
mother (2 Tim. i. 5), and who, though he was one who knew the Scrip- 
tures from a child, yet for all this his conversion was afterwards by Paul's 
ministry ; who therefore calls Timothy his own son (1 Tim. i. 2), not only 
as nourished up by him in the words of truth (as 1 Tim. iv. 6), but as truly 
begotten (in respect of regeneration), as ever any other was of whose con- 
version he was an instrument ; and therefore elsewhere also he still calls 
him his son, 2 Tim. i. 2, 1 Cor. iv. 17, upon the same account that he 
calls Onesimus his son, Philem. 10, ' My son Onesimus : ' and he gives the 
reason why he styles him so, 'whom I begat' (says he) 'in my bonds.' 
And accordingly elsewhere, he distinguisheth between spiritual fathers and 
instructors in the same, 1 Cor. iv. 15, ' Though you have,' says he — that 
is, might be supposed to have — ' ten thousand instructors, yet not many 
fathers,' that is, that converted you ; none was an instrument thereof but 
I : ' For in Christ Jesus I have begotten you through the gospel.' And 
(Acts xviii.) he shews he was the converter of those saints at Corinth ; and 
as of them, so of Timothy, whom, in the very next words, he terms his son 
(which always speaketh relation to a father), and he having thus, in the 
words afore, distinguished between a father and an instructor, and having 
styled himself a father to them, for his having begotten them, that he should 
style Timothy his son, with the same breath, must necessarily be under- 
stood in one and the same sense. And when he says, 1 Cor. iv. 17, ' for 
this cause I have sent unto you Timothy, who is my beloved son ;' there was 
something of an argument in it to move them to receive Timothy, as sent 
them by him, being their natural brother, as it were, begotten by the same 
hand they had been. So then Timothy, though a towardly child, and well 
educated as any can be supposed to be, yet after he was come to years of 
discretion, it was that he was converted. And truly the additions of that 
word, ' begotten you through the gospel,' God having appointed as then, so 
now, the gospel, and that as preached, to be the ordinary standing means 
(though not with exclusion of other means) for begetting men to Christ, as 


well as building men up, argues God's secret ordination of those elect that 
live to riper years ; and yet because a great part of his elect die when 
young, he hath appointed baptism as a net for them (as he did circumci- 
sion of old) and for the other that live, he hath reserved the word to catch 
them : Rom. x. 17, ' Faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word.' 
That is the ordinance of God to that end, as it is also milk to nourish : 
1 Pet. ii. 2, ' As new-born babes, desire the sincere milk of the word, that 
ye may grow thereby.' It is seed to beget them, 1 Pet. i. 23, even the 
same word which is preached to them, ver. 25. And therefore one of tbe 
first encomiums David gives the word (Ps. xix. 7) is this, ' The law of God 
is perfect, converting the soul.' And God appointed the tribe of Levi in 
the church of the Jews to this end, Mai. ii. C. Though they had circum- 
cision then, as we have baptism now, yet Levi was appointed to convert, 
and that many, which is the same speech that is spoken of John Baptist's 
ministry, Luke i. 76, 77, &c, And now God hath ordained pastors and 
teachers, as for the building up, so for the jointing in of the saints, that is, 
for the conversion of them, Eph. iv. 16. 


The reasons why God suffers his elect, grown into riper years, to continue for 
sometime in a state of sin. — The glory of God's mercy and free grace is the 
more illustrated by this dispensation. 

This explication and caution premised, I come now to give the reasons 
why it hath pleased God so to order it, that the generality of his elect, who 
live up to riper years, should for some time remain in a state of sin and 

You meet with a strange thanksgiving, Rom. vi. 17, ' God be thanked 
that ye were the servants of sin.' Had the apostle ended here, you would 
have deemed it blasphemy. But he thanks God, not simply for their 
having been the servants of sin ; yea, not merely for this, that now they 
were converted (which follows, ' that ye have obeyed from the heart that 
form of doctrine which was delivered you,' that is, become men holy, both 
in heart and life), but he blesseth God complexly with respect to both, 
namely, for this change wrought in them, as it is set forth and illustrated 
by their having been the servants of sin formerly. No man likes or com- 
mends the shadow in a picture, if you take that alone ; but it is the like- 
ness thereof unto the life itself which makes both the piece and the work- 
man to be esteemed and praised. And yet the shadow sets off the picture, 
and gives a liveliness unto it. He in the next words shews how the image 
of God had been faintly stamped upon their hearts, as this similitude of 
being cast into a mould, there used, imports. And that is the main thing 
he blesseth God for ; yet withal he admires and extols God's workmanship 
and art in taking the advantage of so great and dark a shadow as an estate 
of sinning is (which themselves had first drawn) to be a foil to this bright 
image of his holiness. God had let them alone a long while to draw the 
dark part (for sin was their work, and not God's work), who is only the 
Father of lights, and with him there is no shadow (as James speaks) and 
no darkness at all (as John hath it) ; and they had many years been appren- 
tices at this work (' ye were the servants of sin '), and God all this while 
having had his work in his eye, he suffered them to go on unto a full mea- 

Chap. IV. J in our salvation. 89 

sure (for the sing of elect men have a fulness before God converts them, as 
well as wicked men before God destroys them), and then God fell to work. 
And he that brings light out of darkness made that chaos and abyss of 
darkness which they had been so long a-creating, the groundwork whereby 
to set out his new world and workmanship of grace> more than if at first he 
had made all perfect, and begun it by sanctifying them in the womb. And 
therefore, says the apostle, ' God be blessed that ye were the servants of 
sin,' which you are to take together with that which follows: ' But ye have 
obeyed from the heart,' &c. For sin, or an estate of sinning, cannot in 
itself alone be made the matter of God's praise, but yet it may serve the 
more to ' commend the grace of God unto us.' So says the apostle, Rom. 
iii. 5, ' If our unrighteousness commend the righteousness of God, what shall 
we say ? Is God unrighteous ? ' If God, who is the judge of all the world 
(as ver. 6), will suffer the creature to go on in sin which it was justly born 
in, and for which he damneth millions of souls, and is not unrighteous in 
taking such a vengeance (as follows, ver. 5), then if also he will suffer an 
elect son of his to go long on in sin, even unto a fulness, and then, instead of 
damning him, converts him, justifies him, and sanctifies him (' Such were 
some of you,' says the apostle, 1 Cor. vi. 11, ' but ye are sanctified, but 
ye are justified,' &c), he cannot be said to be unrighteous. 

In a word, this is such a phrase of speech as in the like case is usual in 
the Scripture'; so in Luke xv. 23, 21, says the father.of the prodigal, • Let 
us eat, and be merry : for this my son was dead, and is alive again ; 
was lost, and is found,' &c. Merry they were, not simply for that he was 
dead and lost, but that, having been lost and dead, he was now found and 
alive ; the mercy of his finding and life being heightened by this, that 
once he was dead and lost, and therefore it enlarged their joy that he was 
now found and alive, and that (as that parable shews) more than if he had 
never plaj'ed the prodigal. Now nothing is more the object of thanks and 
praise to God than what proceeds from love and mercy. 

And so I come to that which at first I propounded to shew, the ends 
God hath in this dispensation of his ; to give an illustration and demon- 
stration of, 

1. His love or kindness. 

2. His mercy. 

3. His grace. All distinctly mentioned in the text. 
I shall first, in a word, distinguish these three. 

1. Love is the foundation of mercy, whereby God peremptorily and un- 
alterably pitched upon some men, and set himself to love them in all estates 
and conditions whatsoever. ' Who shall separate us from the love of God 
in Christ ? ' Now I join kindness and love together in one, for they differ 
but thus, that kindness is when love strives to express itself in the most 
taking way, and to set a lustre upon what it doth. 

2. Mercy is a continuing to love them when they are in misery, for mercy 
properly respects misery. 

3. Grace imports the freeness of both these, his loving freely, and shew- 
ing mercy freely, founded upon no respects in the creature moving him 

Now that which I am to speak to is not simply that God hath put forth 
all these his attributes towards his children in their salvation in general, 
but particularly that he eminently doth it in this dispensation of his, when 
having left them to an estate of sinning, he yet at length quickens and saves 


Again, 2. By way of general premise to this discourse about all these 
three, whether God first pitch his love upon us simply considered as 
creatures, or creahlles in massd purd, in that pure mass, without the con- 
sideration of our being sinners, I will not dispute ; for in relation to this 
point it comes all to one. For if he first set not his love upon men con- 
sidered as fallen into sin, but purely as creatures, yet his wise counsels 
pitched on this course, that we should be left to this condition only of 
having sin in us (as in the mixed estate of sin and grace after regeneration), 
but also to an estate of sin and death, to the end he might shew the more 
love ; that it might appear he took up so great a love, that though we were 
sinners it continued the same ; and not only so, but stirred up mercy to 
pity us therein ; and thus all our sinfulness comes to magnify his love. And 
although God might have communicated himself to us without letting us 
have fallen into sin, though he might have communicated (I say) himself to 
us, as he will heaven, immediately and directly, when the world shall be at 
an end, when sin shall be remembered no more, when God shall be all in 
all, as he is to Christ, and he might have in this estate yet made us appre- 
hensive of mercy in this respect, that when he might have left us to sin, 
and to such a condition of sinning, yet he in mercy would preserve us from 
it ; thus he shews love and mercy to the elect angels. But because the 
creatures are apt to receive the stronger impression by sense and real ex- 
perience, and his end was to take our hearts in a rational and most taking 
way, suited to our apprehensions ; and tben it is the understanding of man 
is taken and struck with admiration, when one contrary is set against or 
brought forth of another, which exceedingly serves to illustrate it ; and also 
because God would suit his way of acting to the experience of man (by which 
Christ himself learned obedience), and in common experience what a man 
really falls into, and is then delivered out of, this affects more than what is 
altogether prevented ; therefore God ordained this course, rather so to com- 
mend his love and mercy to us. 

1. His love. The apostle John doth in this argument make a great 
matter of this one consideration, that we do not begin to love God, but he 
loved us first. ' Herein is the love of God,' says he, 1 John iv. 19, ' not 
that we loved God, but that he loved us,' and, as in ver. 19, ' loved us 
first.' And thus it may be greatened as to angels. But Paul goes farther, 
and, upon the consideration of this our unregenerate estate, winds this 
argument of God's love up to a higher pin, not only by the negative, that 
we loved not him first, but by aggravation positive, that we hated him, we 
were enemies to him ; so in Rom. v., ' God commended his love, when we 
were sinners, ' ver. 8, yea, ' when enemies,' ver. 10, ' Christ died for us.' 
And to set out his love herein, he makes four degrees of misery we were in, 
two negatives and two positives. 

(1.) He describes us to be ' without strength,' ver. 6, unable to help our- 
selves ; yea, dead, and utterly dead ; for so of the body the same word is 
used ; when it is dead, it is said to be ' sown in weakness,' 1 Cor. xv. The 
word is the same word that here he describes us to be. 

A good-natured man is moved to pity a poor weak child or bcaat 
without strength, but it must then have life in it ; but we were dead. 
This you have (Ezek. xvi. 5-7) set forth to the end to greaten God's 
love unto us. He compares that estate of ours afore to that of a dead 
child, still-born, cast forth on a dunghill, all in gore blood, its men- 
struous blood, and none eye pitied thee. Then says God, ' I passed by 
thee, and said unto thee, Live.' I therefore say, a dead child, because 


the mercy shewn was to bid it live, so putting life into it. Not only so, 
but ungodly. 

(2.) ' Ungodly,' ver. 5, and empty of that goodness he at first saw in us, 
so as what by the law of creation might more move him, was lost and for- 
feited : as salt, when the savour, the goodness is lost, is fit for nothing but 
the dunghill. Yet in that case now he is moved to pity. But, further, thcro 
are two positives added. 

(1.) We are said to be ' sinners,' ver, 8; that is, that had dishonoured 
God, and transgressed his law. But yet that might be pardoned if it were 
not out of malice and inbred enmity. 

Therefore (2.) he heightens it by this also, ' even when we were enemies.' 
A love, by all these circumstances manifested to be such and so great that 
much water cannot quench it (as Solomon speaks), is love to the height of 

And as hereby the greatness of his love, so the unchangcableness of his 
love, and peremptoriness thereof, is declared and made conspicuous. 

Is it not an unheard-of wonder, that so strong a stream of infinite love 
should run under ground for so many years, and that so many rebellions 
all that while should not dam it up, but that it should hold on its course 
uninterrupted, and work out all that had so long obstructed the current of 
it, and at last bubble up at a time designed, and save, and wash, and purify 
the wretched defiled creature ? Doth the earth bring forth such a wonder ? 
Have mothers love enough to hold out thus ? Other things may manifest 
other properties of his love, as the giving of his Son shews the greatness of 
it, and yet even that, too, is set out by our natural estate. But nothing 
more argues the peremptoriness and unalterable resolution of God's love, 
than its holding out against all the provoking oppositions in us, against all 
the sins committed before ho had broke his mind, and declared his love 
unto us, or any open way engaged it: Jer. iii. from ver. 1 to the end of the 
chapter. It is usual with you (says God there), and according to the prin- 
ciples you walk by, that though yourselves cast a wife off, and not she you, 
yet if she becomes another man's (as then she may), you will then never 
own her more. Ay, but (says God to his betrothed spouse, his church), 
' Thou hast voluntarily played the harlot, and run after other lovers.' 
'And' (ver. 5), ' thou hast done as evil as thou couldst,' hast sinned, as it 
were to the utmost, and yet I cannot part with thee, and ' yet return thou 
unto me,' says he. He still loves her and allures her unto him ; and why 
is it? He gives the reason at the 14th verse, ' For I am married unto 
you,' &c. There was knit so fast a love-knot between God and them, a 
secret pre-contract on his part, though unknown to them, made by himself, 
even from all eternity, that no whoredoms, no continued sins whatever of 
hers, could untie. Well therefore might the apostle say, ' Who shall sepa- 
rate us from the love of God' in Jesus Christ ? Yea, and challenge angels, 
devils, afflictions, and all creatures else to do it, Rom. viii. 34-39. For 
surely if a continued course of sinning could not dissolve it, then nothing 
else can. 

II. The second thing which God eminently manifesteth hereby is mercy. 
And though God's mercy be absolutely in God, or in his nature, and he 
had been merciful, although we nor any creature had ever been, or never 
had been miserable, yet the manifestation of that his mercy hath respect 
unto misery, whereof sin and death being the greatest that can befall the 
creature, the freeing it therefore from an estate of both must needs be the 
fullest manifestation of that his mercy and pity towards them. Thus, Rom. 


xi. 82, the apostle says, ' God hath shut up' (or concluded) ' all under 
unbelief, that he might have mercy upon all,' both of Jews and Gentiles, 
of whom, in the 30th and 31st verses, he had discoursed how, in their seve- 
ral vicissitudes, first the Gentiles, then the Jews, had been shut up under 
unbelief, and locked up ; they both were under the surest lock and key that 
could be, unbelief, and whereof God alone keeps the key ; who openeth, 
and no man shuts, who shutteth, and no man openeth. The key of the 
door of faith (as Acts xiii. it is called) is in God's hand alone, for it is the 
gift of God. And unbelief is as a gravestone rolled over men, when 
already dead in sin, to keep them in that estate. Now unto those that 
have lain longest under it the greater mercy is shewn. God hath locked 
up the Jews under unbelief for sixteen hundred years, since Christ's death, 
as he had done the Gentiles for above two thousand years before Christ. 
And the design in this dispensation unto either was that he might have 
mercy upon both, who between them make up the all of mankind, for these 
two divided the world. Now this which he doth unto these two bulks and 
bodies of mankind, the more in the end to illustrate his mercy unto them, 
the like he doth to the particular persons of his elect. He shuts them up 
a long time under unbelief, that in the end he may have the more mercy on 
them. Whom likewise doth the apostle call ' vessels of mercy,' Rom. 
ix. 23, but those who once were not his people ? As appears by verses 25 
and 26, vessels of mercy they could not be, till they had first been filled up 
with sin and misery. And that some of them are greater, and of a larger 
size than others, this comes to pass by how much they have been fuller 
filled with sin. Even as a bladder is more capable, and will hold more of a 
precious liquor, by how much at the first it hath been distended with wind ; 
so these are enlarged to contain the more mercy, by how much they have, 
like a wild ass's colt, '. snuffed up the wind' (as the prophet speaks), and 
have walked on 'in the vanity of their minds,' as Paul says, and ' in a vain 
conversation,' as Peter's words are. God's children, as well as reprobates, 
have a measure of iniquity, and a stint of sinning ; which, when they are 
once arrived to, and have filled their measure, God begins to empty them, 
and to fill them up again with mercy. 

III. The third attribute, the glory whereof God doth hereby advance, is 
his applying grace, which is the grace he here speaks of, and which super- 
adds to his love and mercy a freeness, as being extended to us upon no 
motives or incentives in us, but ex propria svo motu. So Rom. iii. 24, 
• Being justified freely by his grace.' Now nothing can be supposed to 
illustrate the fulness thereof more than this kind of dispensation. For 
there can be supposed fewest motives for God to shew mercy to those who 
have done nothing but offended and provoked him in a continued course of 
sinning. After we are regenerate once, though we continue to offend him, 
yet then he is engaged to be reconciled to us. And therefore, Rom. v. 10, 
it is made a greater matter to reconcile us to himself at first when we were 
enemies, than to keep us friends being once reconciled. For to the 
upholding of our friendship many motives may fall in, from which at least 
God may take an occasion to back one kindness with another. But in this 
case there are none at all. Now both the riches of his justh'ying grace, 
and also of his sanctifying grace, are illustrated by this dispensation. And 
I mention both, and upon this very occasion you have both these distinctly 
mentioned, 1 Cor. vi. 11, where the apostle, having spoken of their condi- 
tion before they were converted, he says, ' Such sinners were some of you; 
but now you are justified, now you are sanctified.' 

Chap. IV.] in our salvation. 93 

1. God's justifying grace is hereby (1.) Cleared; and (2.) Exalted; and 
that more than any other way. 

(1.) Hereby is cleared to us that our justification is wholly of and by 
grace. Now, in the point of justification, the great competition is between 
grace and works. Grace looks upon works as its only enemy and compeer 
herein, which are therefore always set in a direct opposition throughout the 
epistles. This is in the text, and this dispensation it is the strongest con- 
viction that could have been that works are no ingredients to the justifica- 
tion of us. Take for proof of this the course the apostle holds in the Epistle 
to the Romans to clear this to them. After in the two first chapters he had 
proved that both Jew and Gentile were in the like natural corrupt estate, 
he says, chap. iii. 9, ' We have proved both Jews and Gentiles, that they 
are all under sin;' not sinners only, but under sin, that is, the dominion 
of it. And this natural condition, and the corruption of it, he describeth 
from the 10th verse to the 19th ; and then at the 20th infers this as a 
corollary from it, ' Therefore by the deeds of the law shall no flesh be jus- 
tified in his sight ; ' and, ver. 23, repeats his reason, « for all have sinned, 
and come short of the glory of God ; ' and therefore he concludes (in ver. 
28), ' that a man is justified by faith without the deeds of the law.' This 
is so strong an eviction of this saving truth, that the papists themselves (to 
do Bellarmine and their doctrine itself this right) do acknowledge that works 
done afore regeneration, though never so outwardly righteous, are excluded 
from that first justification (as they by distinction call it) ; yea, he confess- 
eth that justification then is therefore only in and through Christ's blood. 
But then after conversion, they say, there is a second justification, whereby 
a man is judged worthy of eternal glory, and such and such degrees of it ; 
and this they attribute to good works after conversion, dipped in Christ's 
blood. A man in and by regeneration being made inherently righteous, 
and set up anew, begins with a new stock, and so trades for eternal life. 
And that is their error. But yet, even to convince that works are excluded 
from that their second justification as well as from the first, the considera- 
tion of a man's unregenerate estate doth most aptly serve. The total cor- 
ruption of that estate hath spoiled and disabled all the righteousness that 
shall anew be bestowed for ever being fit to justify us. And this not simply 
because it hath defiled the person, and made him a traitor to God, and so 
nothing can ever, as from him (as in himself considered), be accepted. Nor 
is it the cause why works after conversion cannot justify us, because they 
are imperfect, and stained as a menstruous cloth (though that is a reason 
ex abundanti), but if we could suppose them as undefiled as after the resur- 
rection they shall be, as perfect as in heaven they shall be, and if God 
should upon the first moment of conversion make any one so perfectly 
holy, yet they would not then serve to justify : ' If I know nothing by my- 
self,' says Paul, ' yet I am not thereby justified.' And what is the true and 
utmost reason of this yet ? Because he had known so much by himself in 
his former unregenerate estate. This you shall find to have been the apostle's 
scope and way of reasoning (in the 8th to 11th verses of the second chapter 
to the Ephesians), why salvation is of grace, and not of ourselves, nor of 
works, neither afore nor after : ' For by grace are ye saved through faith ; 
and that not of yourselves : it is the gift of God : not of works, lest any 
man should boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus 
unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in 
them.' That is, these very works are given by grace, of which this your 
former condition enough convinceth you ; for then you were nothing but 


sin, dead in sins and trespasses, not able to think a good thought, so as 
God was out of his grace to give you a new frame of heart on purpose 
created, or you had never come to have had the least good work. And if 
so, then you are not saved by these good works wrought by you, through 
this new workmanship in you, no more than by those afore ; for they all 
are the mere free gift of God, and of his grace ; and that righteousness 
that comes of grace, and holds of that tenure, can never come to justify. 
For the works that must justify must some way challenge that justification 
by debt or a due, not merited indeed (for so even Adam could not), yet by 
a natural due through that first covenant of nature, Horn. iv. 12. 

(2.) As the doctrine of justification is hereby cleared to be by grace, so 
his grace in justification is hereby advanced and extolled, and that in two 
properties thereof. 

[1.] The freeness of grace. 

[2.] The exceeding riches thereof. 

You have the one, Rom. iii. 24 ; the other, Eph. ii. 7, 8, &c. 

[1.] The freeness of grace is hereby exalted ; for if you observe it, upon 
what occasion is the mention of the freeness of grace in justifying brought 
in in Rom. iii. 24, but only upon his having said before, ver. 22, 23, that 
they all had sinned, and there was no difference ; that is, all were alike in 
a state or condition of sinning. For those that are not justified are and 
remain in sflch an estate ; now, says the apostle, so do all those whom he 
means to justify ; he justifies them freely by his grace. For then it is ap- 
parent it is grace, out of its own mere motion, doth it, and so puts a differ- 
ence, and that a vast one : ' Who caused thee to differ from another ? ' says 
the apostle, 1 Cor. iv. 7. 

[2.] The exceeding riches of grace in justifying is hereby advanced ; for 
when a man by sinning hath gone on to treasure up wrath, adding every 
moment to the heap for so long a time, it requires a vast sum of mercy 
treasured up by God to discharge and buy out (as it were) that other. And 
it is certain, when after so long and so lavish an expense of sinning, as falls 
out in a man's unregenerate condition, he comes first to God in the sight 
of all his sins, though afore he lightly took it for granted God was merci- 
ful, &c, yet now he stands aghast at it, and wonders where there should be 
riches of mercy enough to forgive so many millions of talents of sinning. 
And it is infinite mercy (God having such sums ready and lying by him) 
to forgive a man all after all, upon one single act of faith. It is infinite 
mercy in God to sutler such a poor and mean ticket to take up upon pure 
trust so much riches, whenas yet God hath no experience neither of our 
good behaviour. I will not now dispute whether then, at the first justifi- 
cation, God pardons all a man's sins to come as well as past. For whether 
the one or the other be asserted, yet this must be reckoned the great act 
and time of justifying, and of expending the riches of grace upon us, even 
when he first saved us by faith, as Eph. ii. 7-9. And if then all sins to 
come as well as past are pardoned, yet not till then ; and then after so long 
a forbearance, God at once doth it. Well might the apostle triumph upon 
such an experiment, and say, ' Who shall lay anything to the charge of God's 
elect? It is God that justifies.' Shall sin, that a man was born in, that 
lay as an old debt from the womb ? The apostle cuts that oil with an 
easy answer, ' Not as the offence, so is the grace ; ' it abounds much more, 
Rom. v. 15, 16. Though sins, continued in with full consent, every one 
of which had made the corruption of nature of a deep dye, have abounded ; 
nay, throw on heaps of actual transgressions as high as heaven, as Daniel 

Chap. Y.] in our salvation. 95 

speaks, and these reaching also as low as hell, let Manasscs come with his 
fifty years' continued rebellion, and Paul with his, although these abound, 
yet grace much more. Yea (verse 20 of that chapter), the apostle is bold 
to make the utmost supposition, that where sin hath abounded, grace hath 
abounded much more ; and in the next verse compares it to a mighty mon- 
arch that rejoices in the conquest of so many enemies : ' grace reigns through 
righteousness.' And the glory thereof lies (as of other potentates, as Solomon 
says) in the multitude of these its subjects. 

2. This conduceth to shew forth the power of sanctifying grace, or that 
renewing grace. In the text, Eph. i. 19, the apostle Paul attributes to this 
the greatest power that ever God did or will put forth in any work, unless 
in that of raising Christ from that low estate the human nature was in unto 
the highest estate of glory. And how comes it that so great a power ap- 
pears '? He tells us, Eph. ii. 1, where he goes to prosecute it, 'You who 
were dead in sins and trespasses hath he quickened ' ; dead in the sin of 
nature, dead by transgressions actual, whereof each gives a fresh stab ; not 
only twice dead (as Jude speaks), but a thousand times dead. And though 
in nature there is but one measure of death, one man that is dead of one 
stab is as dead as he that hath ten thousand ; yet if you were to raise a 
man to life, it would require a greater power to raise a man to life that hath 
a thousand stabs in vital parts ; for every stab must be cured, or he will be 
dead still. Or rather, to exemplify it thus : to raise a man rotten in the 
grave is a matter of greater power than to raise a man newly dead. Mary 
thought that Christ might have kept Lazarus from dying whilst any spark 
of life had been in him (so twice it is said, John xi. 21, 32, ' If thou hadst 
been here, my brother had not died'). But now (says Martha, ver. 39), 
' he is not only dead, but stinketh.' He hath been dead four days, ver. 39; 
and indeed Christ had stayed away on purpose to shew forth the glory of 
God; ver. 5, 6, compared with the 40th. In like manner thus Christ defers" 
and suffers his own children to be in a state of death. He defers his own 
not only four days, but many years, and before he raiseth them up, lets 
them stink in their sins. The virtue of Christ's death and resurrection is 
a sovereign remedy for any sore, and God is a skilful physician, that in- 
tends to shew the virtue of it, and often drives so long, till, as the prophet 
says, the wound is otherwise incurable, and then applies and cures them. 


Other reasons why God suffers his elect, ivho are adult, to continue for some 
time in a state of sin. — That this dispensation turns to their benefit and 
advantage in the event. — That it serves for the conviction and judgment of 
wicked men, and greater confusion of Satan. 

Unto those ends of God's suffering his elect to remain for some time in a 
state of sin, which are the principal and more immediate, I may add others 
which are but additional, yet ingredients, into this his wise and gracious 
dispensation. And as the ends before mentioned related to himself, so 
these other regard all sorts of intelligible* natures, both men and angels, and 
all sorts of either, good or bad. 

I. They regard good men. 

1. The persons themselves whom he after such a state converteth. He 
• That is, ' intelligent,' or, ' capable of understanding.'— Ed. 


disposeth of a state of sinning afore conversion for their good, as all things 
else to work together for good ; namely, for the increase of their most pre- 
cious graces afterwards. This Paul, in telling that story of his conversion 
which so much delighted him, holds forth : 1 Tim. i. 14, 'The grace of our 
Lord Jesus was exceeding abundant, with faith and love which is in Christ 
Jesus.' The sum of which is this : 

(1.) He had shewn how much the contrary sins had abounded. ' I was 
a blasphemer ' (says he), ' a persecutor ; ' I did it in unbelief. 

(2.) How infinitely God's grace in pardoning him had much more super- 
abounded, vvegsirXsovaes. 

(3.) He had shewn how thereupon, when converted, the contrary graces 
and gifts abounded in him, instancing in faith and love. As on God's part, 
and in God's heart, pardoning and accepting grace abounded, so on his part 
also, and in his heart, faith and love abounded also. ' The grace of the 
Lord was abundant with faith and love ; ' that is, with those effects of it, in 
some proportionable correspondency to the grace shewn him ; and in these 
returns to God again his heart was answerably affected to the comparative 
measure of his former sinfulness and God's grace. These were the rever- 
berations, the reboundings and reflections, rising out of both. And it is 
observable that he carries his discourse so as to shew how, when he was 
converted, the graces particularly contrary to those very sins he had most 
exceeded in afore were wrought in him, and so that therein the abundance 
of God's grace was to be observed. The sins which he instanced in are 
three. [1.] Unbelief; 'I did it' (says he) 'in unbelief,' ver. 12. Oppo- 
sitely, the grace of faith was afterwards abundant. [2.] 'I was a perse- 
cutor ' (says he), ' and injurious ; ' but now grace was abundant in the love 
to God and all his saints, and his love rose higher than ever any one's but 
Christ's; he could have wished himself accursed for them, Rom. ix. 1. 
[3.] ' I was ' (says he) ' a blasphemer,' the foulest throat that ever opened 
itself against God and his tabernacle, and the saints that were on earth. 
He had been a wicked Saul, breathing out threatenings and slaughters 
against the disciples, Acts ix. 1 ; but now Christ counted him faithful, and 
put him into the ministry, and he proved the best preacher that Christ ever 
had. ' He now preaches the faith he once destroyed,' was the bruit and 
character went forth of him, Gal. i. 24. And how he laboured more than 
all the other apostles, himself also reports. 

2. It proves an advantage also to other saints, and that many ways. 

(1.) It gives an occasion of glorifying God, in the conversion of some 
notorious sinner, throughout all the churches. So those that never had seen 
Paul's face— Gal. ii. 22, 23, ' I was unknown by face to the churches in 
Judea ' — and who had heard only, that he which persecuted them in times 
past now preached the faith, glorified God. 

(2.) It gives them occasion also of shewing forth the disposition of grace, 
which of all other is most noble and natural to the new creature, and that 
is a zeal for, desires to, prayers, and endeavours after the conversion of 
others, which, as in nature, so in grace, is the most natural work. Which 
that they may have opportunity to exercise, God affords them through this 
dispensation, matter in their several relations, and this not only to minis- 
ters, but to all sorts of private Christians. God, in his providence, marries 
a wife (that after proves a believer) to a husband that continues an unbe- 
liever long after; 'And what knowest thou,' 1 Cor. vii. 16, '0 wife, 
whether thou shalt save thy husband ? ' So then, as God ordained it thus, 
to shew forth his own love and mercy the more, so withal he designed it, 

Chap. V.] in our salvation. !)7 

that we might give demonstration of our love and pity to the souls of men 
as ho hath in his divine providence left the most of mankind in poverty or 
necessitous, to give occasion tit' that grace of charity which he so delights 
in, as being the likeness of himself. To save souls was the tempting argu- 
ment to Christ himself (Isa. xlix. throughout, and Isa. liii.). Now Christ 
having paid the price, and so having perfected for ever them that were to 
be sanctified, he went to heaven on purpose to leave the actual conversion 
of souls unto us his brethren. He would not do it himself instrumcntally, 
because he would not take that work out of our hands that believe. He 
knew they had the same graces and desires for saving souls himself had, 
and ho would leave them matter for the specifying of it. He withal knew 
how great a joy it would be to a father to win his child, a wife to convert 
her husband, which often falls out, as the apostle insinuates, 1 Cor. vii. 1G, 
' "What knowest thou ? ' He knew that he could not use a higher and 
greater motive to endure much (as they did) from heathen husbands. The 
like he says, 1 Peter iii. 1. So that, as the apostle says, he fulfilled the 
after- sufferings of Christ, that is, what he left for us after his example to 
bear ; so I may say he hath left us this as the after-work, which was pro- 
perly his, and should have been his, even to save men's souls from death 
(James v. 20), but that he would have us have the honour of it. Neither 
doth he employ his angels (who are ministering spirits in all other the 
greatest affairs in this world) in this work, but reserves it wholly for us 
men. He gave the law by them, but not the gospel. He knew there was 
no greater joy, next to joy in God himself, can befall a Christian, than to 
convert a sinner. That which satisfied Christ himself, and for which he 
thought himself well a-payed for all his sufferings, was, that he saw the travail 
of his soul. Isa. liii. 10, ' He shall see his seed, and the work of the Lord 
shall prosper in his hands. He shall see the travail of his soul, and be 
satisfied.' And he knew that to see the like in converting souls, would, in 
our proportion, of all things else most rejoice us. 3 John, verse 4, ' I 
have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth.' First, 
to see those he might call his children : 'My children,' saith he (as Isaiah 
speaks in Christ's person, ' Lo, here am I, and the children thou hast given 
me'), and then to hear they walk in truth. 

H. This dispensation regards bad men, and such as God means to cast 
away. God hath a design upon them also in this dispensation of his. 
God in this world as well makes way and prepares evidence against the day 
of judgment, as for the salvation of his own. This, as one great work to 
be done at the day of judgment, Enoch held forth to the then ungodly 
world: Jude 14, 15, ' And Enoch also, the seventh from Adam, prophesied 
of these, saying, Behold, the Lord cometh with ten thousand of his saints, 
to execute judgment upon all, and to convince all that are ungodly among 
them of all their ungodly deeds which they have ungodly committed, and 
of all their hard speeches which ungodly sinners have spoken against him.' 
As to execute judgment, so to convince ; and I observe it is said, ' all 
ungodly among them,' that is, that have lived among the saints in this 
world ; and of what in a more especial manner are they to be convicted ? 
Even of their hard speeches spoken against him, that is, against Christ, as 
appearing in the saints. Thus Paul was convicted by that speech from 
heaven, ' Why persecutest thou me ? ' Now there is nothing of all passages 
of God's dispensations that falls out in this world, that hath more of con- 
viction in it, than to see those that lived once according to the course of 
this world, and in the same lusts with themselves, to turn unto God, and 



become new men. Neither yet doth anything usually more provoke 
them to hard speeches, even against that conviction, than such strange 
accidents when they do fall out. Nothing hath more of conviction in it, 
and is therefore used as a most effectual means of gaining men, even 
when the word will not, nor the doctrine of it. ' If any obey not the 
word, they may without the word be won bj r their conversation,' 1 Peter 
iii. 1. It sets home the word, as an example of judgment doth a threaten- 
ing against such and such a sin. Hence Isaiah says (Isa. xxix. 23, 24) 
' When Israel' (speaking of the nation) ' shall see his children, the work of 
mine hands' (answerably to Eph. ii. 10, ' Yau are his workmanship, created,' 
&c), ' in the midst of him ; they that erred in spirit shall come to under- 
standing, and they that murmured ' (that were opposers of religion) ' shall 
learn doctrine.' Such an example sets home many sermons. They see the 
word verified ; whilst men shall see and hear, as Christ speaks, on KTt»%ol 
ehayyeTJfyvrai, that, the poor are evangelised, are gospelised, turned into a 
living gospel, the word of God taking hold of them, and they becoming an 
ingrafted word, as James speaks. What the word says and speaks of con- 
version, is made true and good, and exemplified in them in their conversion. 
Christ speaks it not of the bare preaching of it to the poor, for so it was to 
all as well as the poor ; but thereby expresseth the effect of it upon them, 
reckoning it among the miracles that accompanied the preaching of i< ; 
' The blind see,' &c. And therefore Christ there brings it in as a visible 
object : ' Tell John the Baptist' (says he) ' what you have seen and heard;' 
namely, these miracles accompanying the preaching of the gospel, and poor 
souls converted by it, the greatest of all the rest. And these Christ 
allegeth as a full conviction that he was that Messiah to come into the 
world. For that was the message, ver. 19, 20,* John sent them about, to 
the end they might ocularly be convinced of it. So then, my brethren 
let me say this to you, This hath the reality and power of conviction in it, 
that miracles were ordained for. Now though all other miracles are ceased, 
yet God continues this standing miracle. Men are apt to think with them- 
selves, If I had lived in those times, when all those miracles were wrought, 
I should surely have believed. adulterous generation, do ye seek a sign ? 
No other sign shall be given you, but that afore your very faces, your 
companions in evil, your children, or wives, that once lived in sin as you 
do, in that estate you continue in, are converted afore your eyes, and turn 
from their evil ways, professing damnation to have been in that estate which 
they lived in before. And if you will not believe by this, if one were raised 
from the dead you would not believe, for a greater resurrection is here. 
And therefore such a real conviction shall be brought against thee at latter 
day (if thou also turn not) with greater evidence than the multitudes of 
sermons thou hast heard. And though the word of God must judge us, 
yet this will much more. And yet when men do thus turn to God, and 
see converts live among them, they are enraged to speak evil of them, which 
serves to make up the full measure of that sinfulness and vengeance Jude 
speaks of. The apostle Peter (1 Peter iv. 1) gives a definition of a primi- 
( nvert ; (1.) He is one, says he, that 'bath Buffered in the flesh.' 
He and his lusts have been on the cross with Christ, and it hath had this 
effect, that he ceaseth from the common practice of known sins — ' He hath 
ceased from sin ' — and hath utterly left them for the salvation of his soul, 
and this for ever : ' That he no longer should live the rest of his time in 
the flesh, to the lusts of men, but to the will of God.' To the lusts of men, 
* Of Luke vii.— Ed. 

Chap. V. in our salvation. 99 

that is the same lusts the most of men live in. This is his hent, tin's is 
his profession, and this is the work began upon him. There was a time 
Indeed, 'a time past in our lives' (says Peter in the next verse, vcr. 3) 'in 
which we wrought the will of the Gentiles' (for whilst men live in the same 
lusts with others they please them, they are as they would have them), 
1 when we walked in lasciviousness, lusts, excess of wine, revellings, banquet- 
ings, and abominable idolatries.' Well, but now they had turned to God, 
what do the Gentiles among them think and speak of it ? ' They think it 
strange,' that is, it is a wonder to them, for it is as a kind of miracle, they 
cannot tell what in reason or nature to ascribe it to. And they yet ' speak 
evil of them,' and though they are convinced by nothing more, yet they 
are provoked to speak evil of them upon no occasion more, for it brings 
their consciences upon them, it publicly declares that the courses and state 
they still remain in are evil and wicked, and the way to destruction ; and 
this makes them put the cause of this alteration upon ten thousand other 
pretences or grounds, as hypocrisy, &e. Well, but says Peter, all this 
makes but work for the day of judgment, and prepares evidences of convic- 
tion for to help Christ to clear his sentence of condemnation of them ; for 
so it follows, ' Who shall give an account to him that is ready to judge the 
quick and the dead.' So then, this is one of those ends which God hath 
in his dispensation. And surely for a wicked man to see another that 
walked in the same way with him begin to turn head on a sudden, run 
contrary ways so cross to flesh and blood, and which tends to reproach, 
and perhaps ruin in this world : this must needs amaze and awaken his 

III. This dispensation hath its influence also upon angels, both good and 
bad, and produceth as great effects, conjunct with God's glory, as any other 
dispensation of God's providence whatever. 

1. In the good angels it proves the occasion of as great a joy as any we 
read of, that tills the hearts of those great spirits. They are the most curious 
spectators of God's works of wonder ; and themselves are employed by 
Christ in the greatest transactions that belong to this world, in wars and 
making peace, &c, and in what belongs to the preservation of God's elect ; 
and this is an inferior work for them. But they are said in a more special 
manner to joy and rejoice in what themselves have no hand at all, not the 
least, viz., to see and behold sinners and lost sheep converted unto God. 
Christ says expressly, ' There is joy in heaven at the conversion of one 
sinner ;' and as it would seem, this joy befalls them in a great part of a reward 
and recompence for their other so cheerful undergoing those other employ- 
ments and services in this world, which are below them ; which yet, as it 
were by the by, God entertains them with, as the Roman emperor did the 
people with their spectacula, sights and shows to please and to delight them. 
Sure I am, we read of this to be matter of joy to them, who have God so 
much to rejoice in, and not those other employments of theirs ; because 
this of all other is so meet to, and more conjunct with the glory of God, 
which they have made their happiness. Thus also the glorious sufferings 
of apostles and martyrs are made a spectacle for angels to feast their eyes 
withal, 1 Cor. iv. 9. So the preaching the gospel, the sending clown the 
Spirit, the sufferings of Christ, the glory that followed, are rehearsed as 
things the angels do pry into, 1 Peter i. 11, 12 ; and also that which was 
the end of Christ's death, and of sending down the Holy Ghost, and of 
preaching the gospel, namely the conversion of souls. 

2. This dispensation of God hath a design upon bad angels. I observe 


it, that next to man's salvation, Satan's confusion is that which God on 
Christ's behalf purposes with most vehemency and edge of spirit, to con- 
trive how at once to save men, and together confound Satan in the most 
exquisite and artificial way. You may read and observe it, how God gave 
forth that first and great promise of Christ, the promised seed, and of man's 
salvation by him, not first and directly to Adam and Eve themselves (whose 
salvation yet it concerned), but in his speech unto, and in his cursing of 
the devil : Gen. iii. 5, ' I will put enmity between thee and the woman, her 
seed and thy seed. It shall break thy head,' &c. It was spoken in their 
hearing indeed, but immediately directed to the devil, and the point of it 
levelled point blank at his breast. He gave it, I say, with a vengeance, 
uttered with the highest indignation, it answerably being matter of pleasure 
and delight to him to disappoint that enemy. Now of all contrivements 
which God in his wisdom, sharpened with revenge, hath sought out, even 
next to the sending his Son in the world (Non macies* invenit tormentum), 
God hath not invented a more exquisite rack and torment to that evil spirit, 
than that an elect child of God's, having continued many years in a state 
and course of sin, and in the devil's full possession, should be pulled forth 
of his clutches, and converted unto God after so long a time. And that he 
was in his possession, is the thing that vexeth the devil. Had a man been 
regenerated in the womb, it had been far less vexation to him. It is the 
usual description of conversion in the New Testament, that it is the turning 
of a man from the power of Satan unto God, Acts xxvi. 18, a delivering us 
from the power of darkness (which is Satan's), and translating us into the 
kingdom of his Son, Col. i. 13. It is certain that, afore conversion, the 
devil rules and reigns as fully in one that is elect, as any other man, and 
finds no difference, Eph. ii. 2. Now consider what a confusion it must 
needs be to the devil, that when for ten or twenty years he hath possessed 
a man in peace (as in the parable Christ tells us, Luke xi. 21), and like a 
strong man hath fortified his house round, insomuch as he is ' in peace 
and security, that he is his own, and that he shall have him to hell with 
him (he is called his proper goods and chattels, in that Luke xi. 21), that 
when he hath fortified his understanding, the tower of the soul, 2 Cor. x. 
4, 5, with strongholds and high imaginations, when he hath cast up mounts 
and bulwarks, and environed and moated the ill ground again and again with 
corrupt afiections, that there is no access to move it ; insomuch as he 
glories in the possession of a man (as Nebuchadnezzar did in his palace : and 
to shew the devil's like boast and vain account herein, Christ useth the very 
word in that Luke xi. 21, lie, rriv auXr,v savrov, he termeth the man's soul 
his court, his palace), that when the devil is walking up and down, and in 
the midst of glorying, Is not this the man I have possessed so long ? • Is 
not this the Babel which I have built for the glory of my majesty ?' In an 
instant a word comes from heaven, ' Thy kingdom is departed from thee,' 
and the Holy Ghost seizeth upon all, and none of Satan's fortifications can 
keep the wind of the Spirit out, which blows where he listeth, as Christ 
says John iii. ; and the Holy Ghost binds this strong man (as Christ speaks), 
in an hour, throws down, and in a great measure flights all the works which 
this spirit had been a-rearing all that man's lifetime hitherto. Oh, how 
must this needs still that enemy and avenger, when he hath had a man so 
long as it were in a string, 2 Tim. ii. 2G, taking him captive at his will. 
He knew how and where to lay traps and gins for him, and take him as 
the fowler doth the silly birds. To have this poor forlorn man pulled out 
* Qu. ' majus' f — Ed. 

Chap. VI.] in our salvation. 101 

of his jaws, when ho had in his thoughts drunk him up (as Peter speaks), 
and in peace possessed him : what an infinito confusion must this bo to 
him ? Insomuch as Christ concludes of him, that being thus cast out 
he walks in dry places, like one banished, that is melancholy, and seeks 
solitariness, an heath, or a wilderness, as being ashamed to shew his head. 
Thus you have seen all creatures reasonable, and of all sorts of them, 
affected with the thoughts of God's dispensation to his elect, all having an 
interest in it. That as at Christ's birth all the city of Jerusalem is said to 
have been moved at it ; so are all sorts, both in heaven and in hell, at tho 
new birth of one that hath been a lost sinner, which is that which putteth 
the notice upon it ; whereas the regeneration of elect infants passeth 
silently : they are still-born, and no such noise made of it. 


The uses of the foregoing doctrine. — That they who are brought into a state of 
grace should always bear in their minds a remembrance of their former 
state of sin and misery. — That it will have an influence to promote and 
strengthen their faith . 

You have seen God's ends and designs in his disposition toward the 
elect ; and they are great and holy ends, and of as large an extent in their 
tendency, as in any other dispensation of God to us. 

I come now to the uses to be made hereof on our part, which must be 
such as may answer those ends on God's part. And withal what uses may 
be made of such a time spent in sinning afore regeneration, may also fitly 
be turned upon the spirits of those that have had great fits of sinnings in 
any kind after regeneration. They will serve for both, but I will speak 
more directly as in relation to the first. 

You have run out many years in great sins, or few years in many ; look 
back, and now learn to make an improvement of that waste time in your 
lives. Men are apt to think that there is no use to be made thereof, espe- 
cially of so long a time as that of unregeneracy was, in which we all lay. 
Now the apostle, he would never have exhorted the Ephesians (as you see 
he doth, Eph. ii. 2), to remember what once they were, if there were not 
many most fruitful and profitable improvements of the consideration of that 
condition. It is called our ' vain conversation' (so Peter calls it, 1 Peter i. 
18). And the apostle Paul saith, Rom. vi. 21, ' What fruit had you in those 
things whereof ye are now ashamed '?' But, my brethren, assure yourselves 
of this, that God would not have left many, yea, most of his children, to 
so long a time of sinning against him, in which they brought forth no fruit 
nnto him, if that after they were turned unto him there were no ways 
whereby they should improve, and improve with interest and advantage, all 
the experiences they had of their sinfulness in that condition. God could 
have saved you cheaper than by letting you fall into sin at all ; it was not 
for his profit, in a proper and direct way, that those whom he went to save 
should continue in sin, though but for one moment. He could have saved 
us, as he did the angels, a cheaper way. He loves his children so well 
that he would never have it said, that they had so and so dishonoured him, 
if he had not meant to have more honour (in an indirect way, in the event 
and issue, when all is summed up), by all that condition of sinning, in which 
formerly they had lain. 

This general exhortation, which is as a foundation to the rest, is to bear 


all your days in remembrance your sins, and the condition of sin in which 
you sometimes were. In Eph. ii., the apostle had at large discoursed of 
the state and nature they had been in, and the close and conclusion he 
makes of all is, ' Wherefore remember that ye were sometimes Gentiles in 
the flesh,' &c. There are two things which in the New Testament we are 
called upon in an especial manner to remember; 1st, The death of our 
Lord and Saviour Christ, which the sacrament calleth upon us to remem- 
ber, ' Do this in remembrance of me.' And the 2d is, ' Remember what 
once ye were,' what your estate and condition was, and forget it not. There 
is a third, which is, That thou shouldst ' remember whence thou art fallen, 
and repent,' which is coincident with this second. Remember, it had need 
be urged, for we are apt to forget it ; yet it is a duty lies upon us : Ezek. 
xvi. 22, He had discoursed there, in the former part of the chapter, what 
their condition was before God took them to be his people. ' Thy birth 
and thy nativity is of the land of Canaan ; thy father was an Amorite, and 
thy mother an Hittite,' ver. 3 ; and so he goes on to mind them of their 
abominations, ' When thou wast' (saith he) ' in thy blood, I said unto thee, 
Live.' Now, after he had took them to be his people, when they had gone 
a- whoring from him, what is it he lays to their charge, especially at 
ver. 22, that in all their abominations and whoredoms they had not remem- 
bered ? ' In all thine abominations and whoredoms thou hast not remem- 
bered the days of thy youth, when thou wast naked and bare, and wast 
polluted,' &c. And the not remembering of this, as it is made a great sin, 
so it is made a special reason why they had fallen from God so much, and 
so often, after they were his people ; even because they remembered not. 
Every place thou comest in, where thou hast lived before, may put thee in 
mind of some sin or other, Jer. iii. 2, 13. Every member of thy body 
hath sin written on it. The tongue is a ' world of evil,' thy feet have been 
swift to carry thee to vanity. The whole body is not able to contain the 
story of it. As of Christ's holy active life it was said, that all books in 
the world could not contain the history of them, so the same may be said 
of thy sins. 

But in making the use, or application, I shall chiefly confine myself unto 
those ends which God had, as in relation to us, in this dispensation. I 
instanced in two eminent graces in Paul's example, 1 Tim. i. ; I shall now- 
present them particularly. 

I. The consideration and remembrance thereof may help and further 
thy faith. It is true, the guilt of many and great sins is in a direct way 
an opposite and hinderer of faith : it strikes the hand off, and discourageth 
from laying hold on Christ ; yet by God's dispensation, that turns dark- 
ness into light, this may prove a provocative thereto, and an enlarger of it 
many ways. 

1. Unfeigned faith of the operation of God is founded upon self- empti- 
ness and poverty of spirit. If I would seek to move and stir my heart to 
kindly godly sorrow, I would take into consideration my sinning after con- 
version, as being committed against so much love, not only borne towards 
me, but either brought home to my heart, or on which my soul depends 
alone for its salvation ; also against the blood of so gracious a Saviour, 
not shed only, but relied on, and to which I have daily recourse to have it 
sprinkled on my conscience ; also against that Holy Spirit that dwells in 
me, and bears with me an unwearied patience. But if I would work my 
soul up to self-emptiness, I would, with the help of the Spirit, consider my 
natural condition, and that in two respects. 

Chap. VI.] in our salvation. Kj.; 

(1.) There I am sure to find a perfect emptiness of works of right 
for it afforded none ; no, not in any imperfection. This (when the 
sinfulness of such an estate is folly discovered) the heart needs not be 
taught, it is so apparent. These words, Tit, hi. 5, ' Not by works of 
righteousness which we had done,' como in not here only, but elsewhere, 
upon this occasion, as taken for granted by all believers that had any 
insight into that estate, of which the apostle hath pronounced this con- 
clusive sentence : ' So then, they that are in the llesh cannot please God,' 
Rom. viii. 8. 

(2.) A man looking back thereon may see the vileness of his nature to 
the full, for it was then that the power of sin remained in its full strength 
(or to use Paul's phrase, Rom. vii. 5), 'had force,' its full force in his 
members to bring forth fruit to death, which force is now in part broken 
and slain. A man then laid the reins upon his lust's neck. A man then 
committed uncleanness with greediness, <x\it>n^a, such as ho could never 
have enough of. And it is the greediness, the unsatisfiedness, and eager- 
ness of a man's lusts in sinning, humbles more than the outward action. 
A man may, by the course he then held, see what a dragon that serpent 
would have proved ; but now Christ hath trodden on his head, to keep him 
from ever growing again. 

(3.) A man consulting that, may be convinced of his utter inability to 
help himself, and of his want of power to believe. Take any man, and he 
will easily be brought to acknowledge that he hath so much guilt of sin, as 
needs a mediator to God for him ; and that it is necessary that he go to 
him, if he will have benefit by him. But yet still he flatters his heart with 
this, that he hath power to believe and lay hold on him ; otherwise men 
would not dare to defer to believe and repent, if they took not this for 
granted, and were not encouraged by such an opinion. But when a man 
comes to see his natural condition, he sees himself without strength, 
plunged into misery, and unable for ever to help himself, and that there is 
not only need that God would graciously provide a mediator, a sacrifice for 
him (as Abraham said, Gen. xxii. 8), but that God must as well give him 
faith to go unto Christ, as give Christ himself, and must find him hands to 
lay hold of him withal. And this also the apostle regards as a granted prin- 
ciple in believers' hearts, from a sight of their natural condition, Eph. ii. 
For having said they had been by nature dead in sins, he concludes, ver. 8, 
1 By grace ye are saved, through faith, and that not of yourselves ; it is the 
gift of God.' After conversion, a man finds himself quickened, through the 
Spirit and the new creature stirring in him ; but he was afore utterly dead 
in sins and trespasses. There is nothing gives a more perfect experience 
of this inability than that estate. Let the soul remember but that, and he 
must needs remember he wanted all ability to any good. 

(4.) This, and this alone, teacheth a man one lesson (and it is one of 
the highest in faith's school) which but for the experiences hereof, a man 
would hardly, if ever, learn ; and that is, that whenever a man puts forth 
an act of faith for justification, and comes to Christ for it, he should look 
upon himself as an ungodly person, and to be so in himself for ever. This 
is made the very genius, and the spirit of faith : Rom. iv. 5, ' But to him 
that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith 
is counted for righteousness,' and no other. Now after a man is once con- 
verted to God, although he is a sinful man in many respects, yet in that 
state he is not an ungodly, but really and truly a godly man. Doth the 
apostle then intend this speech of the first act of faith, which a man puts 


forth when he first believed only, that then indeed this acting faith was 
such as wherein looking upon himself as an ungodly person, in respect of all 
his former condition, he then came to Christ and God under such appre- 
hensions of himself to be justified notwithstanding, looking on himself as a 
person utterly ungodty ? Now, suppose the apostle had spoken it in 
respect of that first act of faith only, a man could not have had an experi- 
mental sense of his being, or having been ungodly, but by means of having 
lived in such an estate, wherein he had been both a sinner and also 
ungodly, but further, the apostle here speaks of the faith of a believer, 
which he continues to put forth from first to last ; and his scope is to 
describe the whole of that faith all along, which in point of justification a 
believer lives by : which is evident, both 

[1.] By the instance he is alleging for his proof, which is the instance of 
Abraham. Abraham was not justified by works (ver. 2), therefore not we. 
1 For what saith the Scripture ? Abraham believed God, and it was counted 
to him for righteousness,' ver. 4, 5, as shewing and expounding what 
manner of act of faith that was which Abraham our father put forth. It 
was clearly this : he believed on him, or on God as justifying the ungodly, 
and so in believing looked upon himself under the consideration of an un- 
godly person. Now if indeed this act of faith in Abraham, which the apostle 
hath recourse to, had been that which at his first calling and conversion he 
put forth, then this speech of the apostle concerning this faith must have 
been limited to that first act of faith. But if it prove that that act of faith 
the apostle quotes of Abraham was that faith he put forth many years after 
he had first believed, then it must necessarily be understood that Abraham, 
after he was converted, in believing for righteousness looked upon himself 
as ungodly. He had no eye to works no more than at the vciy first. 
Now it proves to be thus indeed ; for it is in the 15th of Genesis that you 
find this first said of Abraham's faith, whereas Abraham had been con- 
verted and a believer many years before ; for Gen. xii. 1-3, you read of 
Abraham's call out of his own country, when yet he believed : Heb. xi. 8, 
' By faith Abraham, when he was called to go out into a place he after re- 
ceived, obeyed.' So then Abraham, in believing, for ever looked on himself 
as ungodly. 

[2. J The apostle's scope all along is, to assert the doctrine of justification 
by faith only, as well after conversion as in conversion, and how that in 
believing a man looks not at work or at himself as working, but eyes God 
under this consideration, as one that justifies a person, though ungodly; and 
upon those terms cometh to God for justification. And therefore justifica- 
tion (says he) is not by works, for they are a contradiction to the very 
furmalis subjection,* or that for hi alts ratio of a person to be justified, which 
true faith hath in its eye ; for it both considers the person to be justified as 
not working, yea, as ungodly. And the formal consideration it hath of God, 
or under which it eyeth him, is, that he is a God justifying the ungodly. 
Now if this be the nature, the tendency of faith as justifying, then, says the 
apostle, it is impossible to be justified at all by works; but if we are justified, 
it must be by faith. For by this faith excludes works in the very form alts 
ratio of the subject to be justified, who is one that worketh not, and in the 
formalis ratio of the object it eyes, the person justifying, God justif}'ing'the 
ungodly. And therefore we may be said to be justified by faith all along, after 
conversion as well as before we are ; ' for the just live by faith,' and the 
righteousness of God is still revealed from faith to faith, as he had shewn 
* Qu. ' ratio suhjecti ' ? — Ed. 

Chap. VI.] in our salvation. 105 

in the beginning of his discourse : chap. i. ver. 17, ' For therein is the 
righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith; as it is written, The just 
shall live by faith.' Then it must be after conversion as well as before 
that the faith of a believer doth in some true and real perspective or other 
look upon himself as ungodly, and as having no works at all ; and for every 
apprehension of faith the believer must look on himself as ungodly. Faith 
and truth are the nearest of kin of all things else ; therefore that which God 
would have me believe must have the greatest and clearest truth in it. 
Therefore this must remain a certain and irrefragable truth, that after con- 
version a man may be said to be an ungodly person. And how can this 
be ? Why, it is no way solvable but by this, that a man having once been 
an ungodly person, and in such an estate he is to look upon himself, as in 
himself, for ever as such, when he comes to be justified. In the 2 Cor. 
xii. 5, you have Paul distinguishing concerning himself : ' I knew a man in 
Christ : of him I will glory, yet of myself I will not glory ; ' yet this man 
was himself, that same one individual Paul. So then Paul in Christ is 
differing in his own eye from Paul in himself. Thus here a believer is 
taught this strange distinction, to acknowledge himself as in Christ to be a 
new creature, a person godly, but yet to turn the other end of the pro- 
spective, and view himself as in himself to be an ungodly person, utterly 
ungodly. And if he will at any time present himself afore God's throne for 
justification, he must plead sub for wd impii, as our law says in another case, 
sub forma pauperis. He must appear in his unregenerate rags, or rather 
nakedness, as a person abominable, cast out, and weltering in all his blood; 
for God as justifying regards nothing at all that difference, which yet himself 
hath made, of godly and ungodly, — godly since regeneration, and ungodly 
afore, — but looks upon the man as environed with the guilt of both estates, 
and so having been once godly ; * as one that is in that court to be ad- 
judged, reckoned so still. It is not a man's new godliness takes away 
the guilt of his ungodliness, but it is only God's imputing a righteousness 
to him that is none of his own. Now look how God, as justifying, looks 
upon things ; so will God have faith, as justifying, to view things also. 
And therefore when faith comes afore a justifying God, it must lay aside 
the thoughts of its own works ; though it have never so many to plead in 
its own court, yet it must fall down and acknowledge (as they at the altar 
did), ' A Syrian ready to perish was my father;' and an ungodly person I 
was once, and am still, as in the guilt thereof ready to perish, and as in 
thy sight (0 Lord) I present myself afore thee as such ; and I cast myself 
upon thee to justify me, not as now godly and converted, but as ungodly, 
for so I was once, and am ever so to be reckoned, in myself considered. 
And this is clearly the faith we first brought to God when we first believed ; 
this is the faith we live by, and this is the faith we are to die in. And so 
as justification in God is one uniform act, actus individuus, as divines speak, 
so hereby it comes to pass that faith (take it as it justifies) is also an act of 
one kind, uniform, constant, and like itself, both at first, at last, and all 
along ; it is ' A believing on God, that justifies the ungodly,' 

Now faith would not have a ground for such an apprehension, unless a 
man had been sometimes in such a condition wherein he was utterly un- 
godly ; and experience of that estate, by having passed some time of a man's 
life therein, helpeth faith to think, yea, formeth in the heart the thought of 
this condition. Take John Baptist, sanctified in the womb, who grew up 
to actual faith after, yet he apprehended, though not by experience, yet 
*Qu. 'ungodly'?— Ed. 


from the word, as David also did, that in his conception he was utterly un- 
godly, nothing but flesh. But if a man hath found himself to live in such 
an estate some years, and hath been convinced of it, then experience helps 
faith, and teacheth it this so hard lesson, than which there is none harder 
in the school of Christ. And this Abraham was taught by occasion, that 
himself had lived in such a condition afore his call, having been brought up 
in idolatry in his father's house : ' for they served other gods,' saith the 
Holy Ghost, Josh. xxiv. 2, speaking conjunctively of Terah, Nahor, and 
Abraham. And therefore in God's call of him the words run thus : 
Gen. xii. 1, ' Get thee from thy father's house ;' that is, leave their sins 
and ways, as Ps. xlv., in God's speaking to the church, that phrase is in, 
like manner included. Now hence it was that Abraham ever after, when 
he came to believe, first looked upon himself as in the guilt of this estate. 
I was an idolater, might Abraham say, and would have been so still ; there- 
fore I believe on thee, Lord, who justifiest not Abraham as religions, but 
Abraham the idolater. I reckon not myself by what through thy grace I am, 
but what but for thy grace I should have been. Paul speaks of himself, ' I was 
a blasphemer once,' and I reckon myself so still ; and all the sermons I have 
made, it was not I, but the grace of God in me. Take the I, and put no- 
thing but blasphemy, persecution, and all concupiscence to it, for this I 
consisteth of nothing else. And the sense of this caused Paul to say, ' I 
know nothing by myself, yet I am not hereby justified,' 1 Cor. iv. 4 ; that is, 
suppose I did know nothing by myself since conversion, yet I know so much 
by myself before as it would never justify me. But as to that point, the 
faith I live by is to believe on him that justifies the ungodly. So then 
the experience of such a former estate of sin helps that part of faith which 
consists of self-emptiness. 

2. As this dispensation of God layeth a foundation for that private part 
of faith, self-emptiness, so it is sanctified by God as a help and promoter 
of faith in its positive acts. 

(1.) Faith, as ye know, lies in a confidence (as the apostle expresseth it) 
in an adventuring to cast my soul on Christ for salvation. Now if a man 
hath adventured upon some uncouth doubtful way, and found success and 
issue therein, he is emboldened to attempt the like with more resolution, 
especially in some special desperate case ; he made such or such an attempt, 
and it succeeded. Now, when thou at first conversion sawest thyself (I 
speak especially to such) as to the time past of thy life to have continued 
in a lost and undone condition, and foundest thyself hopeless and helpless 
in respect of any power or qualification in thyself that might stand thee in 
any stead, tell me, was it not a bold adventure to begin first to believe ? It 
is certain the first act of faith that any man doth put forth (and every man 
had a beginning) was the boldest adventure in the world ; that thus thou, 
a soul guilty of nothing but ungodliness, and so much ungodliness for time 
past, shouldst stretch forth thy impure hand (perhaps trembling when thou 
didst it) to touch him that is the Holy One of God ; to dare so much as to 
think with thyself, he may yet love me, pardon me, and be my husband, was 
the boldest adventure which thou couldst make. And yet God drew, and 
persuaded thy heart to come to him with such a purpose and aim of spirit, 
which venturous act of thine he seconded with easing, quieting, and pacify- 
ing thy heart ; stilling and commanding the waves, that were coming in upon 
thy soul, to be quiet for the present ; yea, perhaps owning thy soul with 
leaving some impressions and intimations of his love and grace inclining 
towards thee. Now then, here is the improvement of this experience. I 

Chap. VI. J in our salvation. 107 

would have thee (the greatest venture being already borne) be bold to 
reiterate the same act of faith continually, which thou mayest now do with 

more steadiness and freedom of spirit than when thou didst lirst believe. It 
is a phrase peculiar in the Epistle to the Hebrews, chap. iii. 14, ' To hold 
fast the beginning of our confidence stedfast to the end ;' as if he had said, 
your first onset and attempt, your beginning to venture upon Christ, was 
an act of daring ; do but hold fast and renew the same, which you have 
greater encouragement to do, if by no other, even by this, that you know 
what it is to begin. Consider, thy faith at first act of believing had no ex- 
perience of its own to hearten it, as Adam and Eve had not when the 
promised seed was first preached ; but now faith hath had some experience, 
if never so small, at one time or other ; then believe again and again, and 
hold fast thy confidence unto the end. 

(2.) Yea, the consideration of this may help thee in the worst and highest 
temptation that can befall thee, for usually the devil's worst, or the worst 
he is permitted to speak of thee to thyself, is to terrify thee with this, that 
thou art still an ungodly creature in tlry natural condition ; and he well knows 
how terrible the fear of that is to a poor believing soul. Well, but yet 
such a desperate plunge is not usual with thee ; if thou wouldst speak truth, 
thou art seldom brought so low, thus to conclude, or to sit down so persuaded 
of thyself, though full of doubts and suspicions. Yet usually when thou 
hast cast up all, thou darest not say God hath wrought nothing yet saving 
on thy heart. Well, but suppose Satan hath overthrown thee in all suits 
and pleas, and thou art reduced to this, I am yet after all this an ungodly 
person ; do thou but yet strengthen thy weak knees, and if thou canst not 
walk, creep to Jesus Christ and say, What I was bold to do at first, I will 
do still ; if I be driven back to that point from whence I launched forth into 
the vast ocean of free grace at first, having neither sail nor compass, I will 
to sea again ; and as I ventured then, I will do so still. And though I have 
missed hitherto, yet there was a time when ungodly Abraham, ungodly 
Paul, &c., began first to believe, and to believe on God, as one that justifies 
persons ungodly. It is not disproportions of greater or lesser ungodliness 
that makes any difference. If thou wert more ungodly than thou wast at 
first (which yet thou art not), it matters not with God. 

(3.) In the temptation about fears of perseverance or falling away, the 
consideration hereof may help thee. Thou hast corruptions break forth 
within thee, and thou fearest they one day will undo thee, and are apt to 
think, AVill God bear with me to the end ? Well, but remember how diso- 
bedient thou once wert, committing sin with greediness, which now thou 
canst not do, a seed of God remaining in thee, which God upholds in thy 
heart, as a spark in the sea, that thou canst not sin as thou wert wont. It is 
certain thou art not worse in that respect than thou wert in that estate of 
ungodliness once ; then reason thus with thyself, If God then loved me so, 
and loves his people so whilst in that condition, as he in the end pulled 
me forth of that estate, will not this his love more easily be induced to pre- 
serve and keep me in this estate I yet stand in ? Yes surely, Rom. v. 10, 
• For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of 
his Son ; much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life.' Do 
thou now then but make the comparison between the one estate and the 
other. Thou never earnest at him then, nor didst anything for him, and 
yet he received thee, but now thou comest every day to him, and he reduceth, 
and brings thee back again. And consider further, that God, during all the 
time of thy unregeneracy, had all that while thou wert ranning on in sin, a 


time in Lis eve, in which he would bring thee home unto himself, and 
relieved himself (as it were) with this, Well, let him now take his swing, I 
shall have him shortly on his knees for all this, and he shall come home by 
' w T eeping cross,' and seek unto me for grace and holiness, w r ith the same 
eagerness he now pursues his pleasures. So now consider, though thy 
spirit by fits runs out into bold evils against him, and conniptions break 
forth in thee, that yet God doth, and can much more easily relieve himself 
about thee now r , than he did before. He says with himself, Well, there is 
a time a- coming shortly, in which I shall take him up to myself, and 
sanctify him fully, and present him without spot and wrinkle afore myself, 
Eph. v. 27 ; it is but bearing with these trifling miscarriages and break- 
ings forth a little space, I did forbear him much more afore when he did 
nothing but sin, and never sought to me in earnest or seriously, nor had I 
one jot of service from him all that while ; but now, though he thus sins, 
yet I get now and then a lively broken prayer of him, I see his heart is 
with me notwithstanding, and he is never quiet till he comes to me again, 
and but half his heart and consent is in the sinning, and my free grace is 
honoured in him in pardoning of him ; and though I honour not myself so 
much in keeping him altogether free, yet he never comes to be as bad as 
afore conversion in respect of the frame of his heart in sinning. Surely 
then, says God, as I bore with him then, and said his clay of conversion is 
a-coming ; so I will bear with him now, as a father doth with his son that 
serves him, for I see a day of his being made perfectly holy is a-drawing 
near, and it is but my waiting till that change shall come. Do thou relieve 
thyself with these thoughts too, and help thy faith with this also, that he 
that gave at first so great and fatal a blow to thy corruptions, and so sensibly 
deaded all thy desires to the world and the pleasures of sin, that thou 
foundest them as dead drink to thy stomach which had lost its spirit, and 
wrought so great a change in thee then, the same God will at the day of 
thy death (which is the next great day when thy change shall come) give 
all thy sins a final blow, and an eternal death's wound. Thou hast found 
the one in part, and trust him thou shalt find the other. ' Wait ' (as Job 
says) ' till this great change shall come,' whereof that other was a beginning 
and a pledge, and of the tw r o the greater. 

(4.) Lastly, the remembrance and consideration of such an estate may 
serve, and is sanctified by God, to quicken a believer, and to take the faster 
hold of Jesus Christ. And although the strength with which we believe is 
wholly and entirely from the Spirit, and put into the soul by him who is 
said to ' strengthen us in the inner man,' Eph. hi. 16, yet he useth apt, 
and suitable, and fit motives by and w T ith which he conveys it, and conveys 
it answerably to the fitness, strength, and force that is in such motives to 
work upon an intelligent nature. Now, among all the considerations that 
are like to thrust and push on a man's soul to take hold on Christ with vio- 
lence, and that may quicken him in his way to the city of refuge, even when 
his knees would else grow feeble, that which is very powerful is the view 
and prospect of an unregenerate condition, and the sins thereof, like an 
army sent out to attach him, to course him, and to make him throw and 
plunge himself into the water-brook, as the hunted hart more furiously, 
when standing still and lifting up his ears, he winds, and hears the cries of 
all his sins that trace his blood. When a man shall see and consider, If I 
be not found in Christ, then not only all the sins I have committed since I 
knew God, but all the bold and bloody transgressions of my youth, the sins 
which I have vomited up, shall call me owner and author of them, and I 

Chap. VII. J in our salvation. 109 

am then still the miserable subject of them ; the vast and thorough prospect 
of all this, ever and anon taken in, drives the soul with the more eager 
vehemence upon Christ. Or as a man hanging upon a high tree or pinnacle, 
having underneath him a gulf of all miseries, as suppose heaps of toads, 
and serpents, or ravenous beasts, that lie gaping in a deep pit, ready to 
prey upon him, and devour him, if he should let go his hold and fall down 
again amongst them (of which he is sensible, having lately scrambled forth 
of it, and. got up upon that tree of life and preservation); the frightful view 
and prospect will cause him to make as sure hold as possibly he can, and 
to renew his hold again and again, and not to hold with one hand, but with 
both, entwining his arms and legs and his whole body about that tree, em- 
bracing it for preservation, as well as for the pleasant fruit that grows upon 
it ; so it is here in this case too. 


The second use we should make of the review of that wretched, sinful state out 
of which God removes us by the work of his {/race, is to have our hearts 
affected with the sense of God's extraordinary lore manifested herein, and 
to excite and heighten our love to God by the consideration of this his great 
love to us. 

II. A second main improvement of the remembrance of thy former con- 
dition is to intend and heighten thy love to God. This is that second 
particular which Paul instanceth in 1 Tim. i. as the redound and conse- 
quent of having been injurious in his former condition. Grace was abun- 
dant in love (says he) ; that is, grace made this advantage thereof, to cause 
me to love God the more. And this is also the spirit of that saying, 'Mary 
loved much, because much was forgiven her,' Luke vii. 47. Christ founds 
his reasoning upon two things. 

1. God's usual dispensation, which is, that where he leaves one to many 
sins, and long to continue in them, when he converts him, he works in 
him more love to himself; and on the contrary, where fewer sins have 
been, there is less love. For to assert the truth of this, Christ turns it 
both ways ; for it follows, ' To whom little is forgiven, the same loveth 

2. Christ founds his reason upon this, that where God shews more love, 
he works and draws forth more love to himself again. God chose us to be 
' holy afore him in love.' It was the end of his choice, and the aim of his 
love. And as he makes it an agreement that he loved us first, so he will not 
bate the least grain, degree, or proportion of love, but he will have use for 
it ; and those whom he loves most, he will cause their hearts to love him 
more in the end. Now God shews love in this life in no dispensation more 
— (I do not say only, or most by this, yet in none more) — for, as I shewed 
you, his end in it was to set forth grace, mercy, and love. And therefore, 
when he hath effectually wrought upon a soul that had lain in such an 
estate, he makes the heart sensible of more love from himself, and so draws 
love forth out of the heart again. Est magnes magni magma amoris amor: 
' Love is the loadstone of love,' and draws according to the measure of the 
virtue and spirit that is in it. "When did Christ ask Peter, ' Lovest thou 
me ? ' John xxi. 17, &c, but then, when he had denied him, when he first 
met with him after it. And it is observed, that as Peter had denied him 
thrice, so Christ asked him thrice, ' Peter, dost thou love me ? ' Christ 


expects a proportion of love from Peter to his own lore shewn in pardoning 
of him. And as for this converting love of God, when fully considered, 
whom indeed would not such a love move ? Think how, during thy unre- 
generate condition, God lay in ambushment for thee, to environ thee about, 
and then overcame thy heart with loving-kindness. Think how during all 
that time thou hadst not one good thought of God (Ps. x., ' God was not in 
all thy thoughts'), that yet God's heart and thoughts continually have been 
upon thee, thinking nothing but thoughts of peace to thee, and not of evil, 
Jer. xxix. 11. Thou wert written upon his heart and the palm of his 
hands all that time thou didst nothing else but write and score up sins 
against him. You may observe (for it is worth it), how out of this dispo- 
sition of heart in God, the Holy Ghost cannot forbear bringing in the men- 
tion of Saul in the history of his life and actions, again and again before his 
conversion, as one he had his eye upon whilst he was a persecutor : Acts 
vii. 58, ' The witnesses,' knowing his zeal, ' laid their clothes down at a 
young man's feet called Saul,' who was consulting Stephen's death, Acts 
xxii. 20 ; his hand was in the murder of the first martyr. I saw thee 
then, said God to him when he converted him ; and if he tells us of it, he 
told himself much more. And again, you have it again repeated in ver. 3 
of that chapter, ' As for Saul ' (he stood in God's eye more, and God all 
that while took more notice of what he did than of all other men), ' he 
made havoc of the church, entering into every house, and haling men and 
women, committed them to prison.' And as he said of Sennacherib, 2 Kings 
xix. 27, ' I have known thy abode, thy going out, and coming in, and thy 
rage against me ; ' so he shews he did take notice of Saul all that while, 
but with a differing intention. As he relieved himself against Sennacherib's 
rage and tumult, that he would put a hook in his nose, and a bridle in his 
lips (' And I will turn thee back by the way which thou earnest,' ver. 29), 
so God did all that while please himself with the thoughts of his purposes 
towards this Saul ; that the time would shortly come, that he should have 
him come in as fast, and with as much holy violence, to seek mercy from 
God, as ever he had gone forth against him ; that he should see him in the 
pulpit preaching the doctrine he now destroyed ; that he should have a 
hook, a cord of love to strike into his heart and draw him back again ; and 
that he had appointed the instant moment when he would throw it at him, 
just when he was going to Damascus. And God, out of his love, pleased 
himself as much with the thought of this aforehand, nay more, than he did 
at the thought of his turning back Sennacherib, whom, you may perceive, 
that God makes sport at. And as God is said to laugh at the wicked, see- 
ing his day a-coming, Ps. xxxvii. 13, God pleaseth himself with this thought 
concerning an elect soul : Well, let him play on the line, the day of his 
conversion is at hand, and then I shall have him. Well, this time draws 
near, and to shew how much God's thoughts were on it, as ours use to be 
on some great occurrence, for which a set time is appointed, God is speak- 
ing of it a third time : Acts ix. 1, ' And Saul, yet breathing out threatenings,' 
&c. You see the Holy Ghost puts in a yet, as if God began now to think 
the time long, or was then thinking with himself, his time is but short which 
I have allotted him to continue in sin, it is almost out, he yet breathes out 
threatenings, but his threatenings now shall breathe out their last. Now, the 
same heart and affection God had all that while towards thee whilst in thy 
natural condition, and when thou wert committing such and such a sin, 
God saw thee ere thou didst him (as Christ told Nathanael, ' I saw thee 
under the fig-tree') loving thee all that while with the same love with which 

Chap. VIII.] in our salvation. Ill 

he loves thee now, though then concealed, as Joseph was to his brethren. 
And as he had appointed a fulness of time for the coming of his Son into 
the world, so ho had appointed 'a set time' to have mercy on thee, as the 
psalmist speaks, Ps. cii. 13. And Oh, how did God long all that while 
until that time should come; as Jer. xiii. 27, 'When shall it once be?' 
And when that day was come, you may see how his heart rejoiced in the 
parable of the prodigal : Luke xv. 20, ' When he was yet a great way off, his 
father saw him.' It expresseth his longing, how he looked out aforehand ; 
his love sending forth his eyes, as messengers, to feed him with that news 
he so delighted in. And after thou begannest but to utter thy heart to him, 
he could not hold long, but fell upon thy neck and kissed thee ; so ver. 20. 
He broke up that treasure of mercy he had from everlasting laid by for 
thee under lock and key of his everlasting purposes, and which he had 
reserved and kept for thee as thy portion. Though millions in all ages 
had passed afore hin>, and might have been heirs of it, yet he reserved the 
rich robe for thee, and fetched it out for thee, Luke xv. 22. And when 
thou begannest to melt towards him for having offended him, and to be- 
moan thyself (as, Jer. xxxi. 18, the phrase is) more out of love to thyself, 
and sense of thine own misery, than love to him, yet he fell a- weeping too 
as fast as thou, and his bowels were stirred for thee ; what, says he, ' Is 
Ephraim, my pleasant child,' come home to me ? And is Ephraim, the 
wickedest of all the tribes, become pleasant to me ? God speaks it won- 
deringly, as indeed admiring at his own affections, how enlarged they were, 
how his love was gushed forth, and therefore well mayest thou. What 
heart is there that proves the subject of these glorious, yet true occur- 
rences, that will not, is not moved at the remembrance or the rehearsal of 
them ? They so took Paul's heart, that the love manifested therein would 
never out of his mind : ' I was ' (says he) ' a blasphemer, but I obtained 
mercy.' If we had been in Paul's heart to have discerned the mixtures of 
the strange affections which met when he put these two together, I and 
mercy, who ever would have thought that these two should meet, that were 
as distant as hell and heaven ? Who would not (thought Paul) have made 
a but of exception at me ? Who would not have entered a caveat against 
my ever having mercy, of all men else, if there had been no more in the 
world ? Ananias puts in a demur, Acts ix. 13, when €hrist did but speak 
of him; ' Lord, I have heard by many, how much evil he hath clone to the 
saints at Jerusalem.' And it is said, ver. 21, that ' all that heard him were 
amazed.' But yet this Saul obtained mercy, and so hast thou. Oh let 
this grace of our Lord be abundant with love in thy heart towards him 
again, as it was in Paul's. Paul could never think of these passages, but 
a sea of love broke into his heart and overflowed it. 


That the thoughts of God's excellent love in bringing us out of this woful state 
of sin into a state of grace, should enkindle in us sacred zeal and fervency of 
spirit to live in all holy obedience to him. — And what a dreadful condition 
they are in who make an ill use of the doctrine of grace, by abusing it to an 
encouragement of carelessness, negligence, or licentiousness. 

III. As the considerations of God's love in changing our state may thus 
inflame love, so they may enlarge obedience, which springs from love, and 


may excite thee to fruitfulness, and abounding in the work of the Lord, 
and to be willing to do or suffer any for hiin. It inflamed Paul's zeal, in- 
somuch as none of the apostles laboured so much as he. His spirit was 
never at rest ; he thought he could never do enough. Peter denies his 
Master, it is true, and he did it thrice; and you know how Christ came 
upon him for it, with a higher care of work and labour from him : ' Feed 
my lambs.' He saj's it thrice too in the forementioned John xxi. So as 
indeed Christ in that place, to which I have recourse again, would have 
Peter make these three commensurable : 1. That as Christ had loved him 
more, in pardoning more than to the rest ; so, 2, he expected that he should 
love him more ; and, 3, that proportionally to that love, he should give de- 
monstration of it in his care over his lambs. To move Peter the more to 
be willing to do and suffer for him to the last of his days, Christ gives him 
a little touch, as I understand it, of some wildness and youthfulness that 
had been in Peter's spirit afore Christ had to do with him : ver. 18 of that 
chapter, ' Verily, I say unto thee, When thou wast young, thou girdedst 
thyself, and walkedst whither thou wouldest : but when thou shalt be old, 
thou shalt stretch forth thine hands, and another shall gird thee, and carry 
thee whither thou wouldest not.' Peter had had his vagaries, and lived 
as he listed ; and further, as may seem, had given an instance lately of 
what kind of activities (as I may call them) his j'outh had delighted in (as 
many j'oung men do in bodily exercises, and shewing their strength and 
vigour that way, with too much excess of delight and pride in them), in the 
7th and 8th verses. He being in a ship (ver. 7, 8), and spying Christ, 
girds his fisher's coat about him, and makes no more ado but casts him- 
self into the sea. The other disciples were of a more sober spirit, and 
came into the ship by land,* which he might have done as well as they, 
being not far off land ; but as it would seem, he gloried in such feats and 
active pranks, and would shew his Master one, who was now risen from 
the dead, and was not taken with such things ; and yet there was some love 
mingled with this. That which moves me to think Christ had a purpose 
to mind Peter of the way of his spirit wherein he had so much delighted, 
is that he seems to speak of the whole course of his youth, wherein he had 
taken liberty to do what he listed : ' When thou wert young, thou wentest 
whither thou wouldest,' that is, didst live to thine own lusts ; which Peter, 
in his Epistle, involving himself with others, acknowledgeth : he was as a 
loose unruly heifer. And indeed many such things, in themselves inno- 
cent and lawful, young men are addicted unto ; yet when there is a pride, 
vanity, vain glory, excess of delight, with expense of time, they are in God's 
eye great sins. As also is the vanity of those scholars who adore learning 
too much, and too inordinately love it, from a desire to gain reputation and 
esteem. This was Lipsius his confession on a great fit of sickness : I have 
not been (said he) covetous nor vicious, Sola mihi placuit didcis pellaeia 
musa; only the harlotry of learning took his heart. Christ, you see, 
makes this use to Peter of his former wanderings; to move him to be the 
more willing to be carried whither God would have him, even to the cross, 
as that whereby God ordained to glorify himself in him. And seeing he 
had delighted himself in such activities, as a man of mettle and courage, 
God therefore would serve himself of this spirit of resolution in him in a 
way of trial contrary to the way of his spirit. He was to be hung up by 
the heels upon a cross (the worst of crucifyings), to be bound to his good 
behaviour thereon. And Peter (says Christ), see that thou, remembering 
* Qu. ' in the ship to land ' ? — Ed. 

Chap. VIII.] in our salvation. 113 

what thou wert when young, shew thy valour, thy resolution, when thou 
oomest to that conflict; and Peter remembered it, and was moved by it, 
2 Pet. i. 14. If this conjecture should not hold, sure I am I find Peter 

hinlself in his epistles urging this as a most provoking argument to quicken 
to future obedience. And he puts himself in among the number of those 
that had so walked in vanity and sin, for which the popish commentators 
would find excuses. He speaking of the genius and spirit of a Christian, 
he says, 1 Pet. iv. 3, he is one whose heart this principle hath taken hold 
of and prevails upon him, that he no longer should live the rest of his time 
in the flesh to the lusts of men, but to the will of God : ' For the time past 
of our lives may suffice us to have wrought the will of the Gentiles.' The 
strength of this persuasive lies in these two things : 

1. They had a long time of their lives already lived in the sins of such 
an estate. They had served their lusts, and done nothing for God all that 
while ; and there is but a remaining remnant of it left, rov hriXomw iv eagxl, 
which is as a brand plucked out of the fire. Oh ! bestow that wholly upon 
God, with grief and sorrow that so much is spent and burned out in sinning ! 
Do as much for God as ever you did for the devil. ' As you have yielded 
your members servants to uncleanness, to iniquity unto iniquity,' adding 
one iniquity to another, and thinking you had never done enough for your 
lusts, and growing worse and worse, so now yield your members servants 
to righteousness unto holiness. And if there were anything higher than 
holiness, they should reach at that too. And, 2, He edgeth it with this, 
' that the time past might suffice to have served their lusts,' if they could 
suppose it to be lawful for any space of time to neglect God's service, and 
please and indulge their lusts ; yet those lusts had had sufficient time of 
their lives already, and indeed too great a share, and therefore it may well 
suffice. If a lust of thy former ignorance tempt thee, is it not an answer, 
a sufficient answer, You have been served alreadj', you have your time out, 
and too much ? And if it urgeth thee to take a little pleasure for a moment, 
and then to serve God again, yield not, no, not for a moment, as Paul speaks, 
Gal. ii. Your lusts have had too many moments spent upon them, and 
your whole time was due to God, and he hath too little left. For as the 
apostle reasons, Rom. viii. 12, ' We owe nothing to the flesh, to live after 
the flesh,' we have no reason to do the least kindness for it, nor to give 
it a crumb, though it were to save a lust's life ; so nor to afford it one 
moment of our time, but to give the whole unto God. Now, therefore, it 
behoves you to redeem the time remaining to the utmost, to live much in 
a little, to do all for God, from a holy grudging that Satan hath had so 
much. The apostle Paul makes this of itself an argument to more holi- 
ness, that by how much less of a man's time is left in the flesh, he should 
be the more holy : Heb. x. 25, ' So much the more, as he sees the day 
approaching.' And Peter adds this to it, by how much of the time past 
hath been lost to God, we ought to take our measure, that the more of 
what is to come be consecrated to him. And in 1 Pet. i. 15, 18, his scope 
being to exhort to holiness (as that is the main drift and errand of his 
epistles), he sets together in opposition and in view their vain conversation 
(ver. 18) with that holiness of conversation which God now expected : ver. 
15, 'Be holy in all manner of conversation, for ye are redeemed from a 
vain conversation.' He sets conversation to conversation, and holy to vain. 
Be holy in all manner of conversation, for you have been altogether vain 
in your former conversation ; let the total corruption that was in the one 
therefore provoke to a total sanctification in the other. And indeed such 



grounds as have lain long fallow, you expect the greater crop from 

IV. The last advantage which we may have by occasion of such an estate 
of sinning, is to remember it, to keep our spirits low and humble for ever, 
after conversion wrought ; and the like use ought to be made of any great 
fit of sinning. You shall therefore find that the apostle Paul, who had as 
high manifestations of God as ever man had, for no man ever since or 
before him had the like (our Lord and Saviour Christ himself, though he 
was transfigured upon the mount, yet he had never been rapt up to paradise, 
nor into the third heaven, as Paul was, but lived by faith as we do), yet 
that which kept him low all his days, was the remembrance of what he 
had been. You find two expressions to this purpose. The one in 1 Cor. 
xv. 9, ' I am,' saith he, ' the least of the apostles, that am not worthy to 
be called an apostle,' though he doth profess elsewhere, that he laboured 
more than they all. But if you look into Eph. iii. 8, which is the next 
text, he goes lower : ' To me,' says he, ' who am less than the least of all 
saints.' The one phrase (viz., that which he useth in the Corinthians) is 
a diminutive expression, skd^/isrog, the least of the apostles, and yet there 
he compareth himself with apostles. But in that place of the Ephesians 
he compares himself with saints, and useth a more diminutive expression,* 
if there be anything ' lower than the least,' he humbleth himself to it ; and 
that not in relation to apostles, but in relation to saints. Now what was 
it that kept Paul, that had all his grace in him, and all the cause in the 
world to be rapt up above the rest of saints and apostles in privileges 
vouchsafed to him ? You shall find it in that 1 Cor. xv. 9 (that which I 
quoted even now), where having said, ' I am the least of all the apostles, 
that am not worthy to be called an apostle ;' in what follows, you find it 
was the remembrance of his former condition, and of what he had been, 
persecuting the church of God, that moved him to such humble thoughts 
and words. You know when he speaks of his unregenerate estate in 1 Tim. 
i. 11, ' I was a persecutor,' saith he, ' and injurious,' &c. This was it he 
bore the scars of, in his own spirit, to his dying day. And you may observe 
how he did grow up into this humility and into this lowness in his own 
eyes. When he wrote that Epistle to the Ephesians, he was an aged man : 
he styles himself there ' Paul the aged ;' he had written to the Corinthians 
long afore. You see he grows to a deeper sense ; he was the least of the 
apostles then, but now the least of all saints. And what was it that did 
make him thus low, and that he did grow up into a daily sensibleness, the 
more God loved him and revealed himself to him ? Even his own vileness, 
the consideration of what once he had been. ' Because' (saith he) ' I have 
persecuted the churches.' Why Paul, he had thought of that sin a thousand 
times, but still the older he did grow, the more it did sink into his spirit, 
and humble him the more. Hast thou had any manifestations of God to 
thy spirit ? Hast thou prayed well to-day ? And art thou proud of it ? 
Hath God lifted thee above others in spiritual privileges ? Come, take 
but a turn in thy unregenerate condition. Let me bring to thy remem- 
brance thy old walks ; what wert thou ten, twenty, or thirty years ago ? 
And what wert thou doing of then ? Dost thou not remember ? Suppose 
a man had lived with Nebuchadnezzar after he had come out of the wilder- 
ness from amongst beasts, and should have heard him talk as presump- 
tuously as before, ' Is not this great Babel I have built ?' If one should 

* Namely, f\ayj<Srorsow. — Ed. 


but have minded him, and bade him go to tho wilderness where ho was two 
or three years ago, it would have pricked his bladders and let out the wind; 
so it will have the same effect in thee. 

I have made many uses, you sec, of this great point for you ; there is 
one use mure (it is a bad one), which I am afraid some of you will make 
for yourselves ; it was Paul's fear, also his fear to prevent it ; and that is, 
that seeing a man who hath lived in a a state of sinning often hath, and 
may have, this event, to be converted at last, I will even continue in sin, 
that grace may abound, or at least I will presume still to continue as I am. 

1. I will give the apostle's answer, Rom. iii. 8, ' Let us do evil that good 
may come ; whose damnation is just.' He throws hell-fire back again upon 
them, and that is all the answer ; that if God, upon such an arguiug of 
thine, should pronounce such a sentence on thee, and swear against thee in his 
wrath, thy damnation were just ; and this God often doth against many. 
For in thus arguiug, besides thy abuse of the sweetest attribute of mercy, 
thou assumest to thyself God's highest sovereignty and prerogative, which, 
if ever in anything, lies in this, that he can bring so great a good out of so 
much evil ; and yet in so doing he barely permits the creature to go on, leav- 
ing them to their own ways. But thou art active in all thine, and by 
this proclaimest thyself, ipso facto, the greatest rebel that God hath on earth. 
You know that great and terrible place, Deut. xxix. 18-20. God was 
tendering that day the covenant of grace, as is clear by Paul's application 
of that sermon, Rom. x., and by the first verse of that chapter. And he 
bids them take heed, lest there be a root of bitterness, an evil heart in one, 
that says, ' I shall have peace, though I walk on in the imagination of my 
heart, and add drunkenness to thirst,' that is, to satisfy my lusts. ' The 
Lord will not spare that man,' but then (even whilst he is thinking such a 
cursed thought), ' the anger of the Lord shall smoke against that man, and 
all the curses in this book shall lie upon him, and the Lord shall separate 
him unto evil, single him forth of all the tribes,' &c. 

But shall I close with thee now at last ? Dost thou begin to be sensible 
thou hast gone on in such a condition to this hour ? Go home and tell 
God of it ; there is no remaining in it, no, not for an hour, for the wrath of 
God abides upon thee. Yet say not there is no hope (as they in Jer. ii.), 
for you have heard, it is one of God's greatest designs to exalt grace, love, 
and mercy upon men, by and in that way. Let all that is in God encourage 
thee. Thy way out of it hath been made plain before thee ; it is regenera- 
tion, that passage from death to life. Oh, begin to seek to obtain it ; if 
thou hast a mind to Christ, assure thyself he hath much more mind to 
thee. Art thou wambling ? Art thou whimpering ? I assure thee he is 
gone forth to find thee ; Luke xv. 4. He goes out to seek that which is 
lost, long before he finds it. He will meet thee half way (as you have it in 
the same 15th chapter of Luke, verse 20). Only let me persuade thee to 
turn now to him. Thou art not only perhaps undone else, but if ever thou 
dost hereafter turn, thou wilt repent thou didst it no sooner. Yea, thou 
wilt repent for nothing more, than that sin had so much more time after 
God had moved thee. It is the ingenuity of true grace (which is love to 
God) so to work. Come, it may be a match between Christ and thee 
before midnight yet; it was so to the jailor, Acts xvi., in a less space. 
Come ! I have spoke thy heart, and have hold of it. I will not let thee go. 
What thou and God will alone together make out of it, I know not ; there 
may be but an inch between thee and eternal glory ; wilt thou defer ? Oh, 
unkind ! If thou hopest to go to heaven, shall God have no glory out of 


thee, in amends to what is past ? Shall thy ' no longer to live to the lusts 
of men,' be thy ' no longer to live' ? Tell me how many years hast thou 
lived in sin ? What is thirty or forty years ? May not that suffice to an 
enemy that will destroy thee ? In a word, I have told you a long story of 
God's design in suffering the bulk of his elect to go on to years of discretion, 
ere he converts them ; and that his design therein is glory to himself. But it 
is meet for me withal to tell you, yea, indeed end in telling you it, that 
as God's design is to shew love in it, so wisdom also. And therefore 
ordinarily his design is so to convert, after such a time of sinning, as pro- 
vidently to have such a time in thy years remaining, as to have a glory out 
of thee in thy fruitfulness and obedience. There are but few instances of 
late repentance. All the epistles of the apostles speak of men that had 
formerly been in such a condition of sin, but they were yet written to them, 
whilst alive, and now turned, and as remaining surviving subjects of exhor- 
tations to all holiness, and left to give demonstration thereof. My brethren, 
God is so wise, as he will compass and grasp both ends. As he will leave 
a time in which you may have experience of such an estate, so he will 
ordinarily so convert, or not at all, as there may be a time to shew forth 
the contrary graces for his glory, which is made the end of conversion 
1 Peter ii. 9. And of the two, you may well give God leave to project the 
latter for the longer time, for a little of the other sufficeth. I observe it in 
this epistle to Titus, that this grace and love (which Paul says appeared to 
us who were sometime disobedient, in this third chapter), is in chap. ii. 12 
said so to appear, as that men may afterwards give demonstration of their 
living soberly, righteously, and godly, according to that grace, even in this 
present world : for otherwise, whilst they are in the world, God would lose 
his design. 

Chap. I.] in our salvation. 117 


The necessity of regeneration demonstrated by this argument, that all that God 
and Christ have done towards their reconciliation to us will profit us nothing, 
unless we be reconciled to God. — And Iww conversion is set forth under the 
notion of reconciliation as on our part. 

And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ, 
and hath given unto us the ministry of reconciliation ; to wit, that God ivas 
in Christ, reconciling the ivorld unto himself, not imputing their trespasses 
unto them ; and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation. Now 
then ice are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us : 
we pray you in Christ's stead, be ye reconciled to God. — 2 Cor. V. 18-20. 


That notwithstanding tvhat God and Christ have done for their reconciliation 
to us, it is, by God's ordination, necessary that we be reconciled to God, if 
ever we be saved. — This proved from God's design in his reconciliation to us, 
to glorify his holiness, dc. 

Our apostle professeth to declare in these, and the foregoing words, the 
whole substance of the ministry of the gospel, which he and his fellow 
apostles were entrusted to deliver to us : ver. 18, ' God hath committed to 
us the ministry of reconciliation;' which message or ministry consists of two 

1. A reconciliation wrought on God's part towards us, in the effecting of 
which Christ was concurrent with him ; for ' God was, in Christ, reconciling 
the world to himself.' 

2. The other business is a reconciliation on our parts, enforced from 
what God and Christ had done ; and this is equally necessary unto man's 
salvation, as that reconciliation on God's and Christ's part is : ver. 20, 
' Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you 
by us : we pray you in Christ's stead, be ye reconciled to God.' Now as 
these are the two parts of the ' ministry of reconciliation,' that is, of the 
gospel, so they must be understood to be two essential requisites, to make 
our salvation complete, and both alike essentially necessary thereunto, and 
without which we shall never be saved, as those obliging words of God and 
Christ, ' beseeching us,' ver. 20, shew. Now under the notion of our being 
reconciled to God, he intends, and involveth both, the whole of what is 
requisite on our parts from first to last, both that work of reconciliation 
effected in our regeneration, whereby we enter into that estate, and which 
is required of those to whom this gospel comes, to estate them into salva- 


tion, and also a daily proceeding to pei'fect that reconciliation (after it hath 
been begun) by faith and repentance towards God and Christ. 

For he applies this doctrine to the Corinthians, that had been reconciled 
already. And yet (says he), ' be ye reconciled.' 

Obs. Notwithstanding what God and Christ have done towards our recon- 
ciliation on their part (which is the first of the message), there is a neces- 
sity, by God's ordination, of our being reconciled to God, if we be partakers 
of salvation. For the apostle, having distinctly declared both God's care 
in it and Christ's, he from thence presseth this on our part, as that without 
which the other would be in vain, to the attainment of God's intention and 
aim in both, which is our effectual salvation. And to impress this the 
more effectually upon the spirits of men, the apostle tells them that himself 
and other apostles and ministers to whom this ministry is committed, are 
ordained ambassadors of God, not only to proclaim and declare to us this 
fore part of the message, ' That God was in Christ reconciling the world 
unto himself,' and that Christ ' was made sin for us ;' but that himself and 
the other apostles were ambassadors of God and Christ, to beseech us to 
be reconciled : ver. 20, ' Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as 
though God did beseech you by us : we pray you in Christ's stead, be ye 
reconciled to God.' Which beseechment denotes not only their gracious 
condescension, or mere desire to us, but loudly speaks the absolute neces- 
sity of our being reconciled by God's appointment ; as without which, if 
not performed by us, God should lose what he had wrought towards it, and 
Christ should lose his labour and reward ; and the design of his having 
been made sin for us. And that this is God's resolved ordination, he fur- 
ther enforceth from the end of God's having set up and established such a 
ministry of his apostles and their successors in the world, whose office is an 
embassage from the great God by preaching, and then by writing their 
epistles, to reduce and bring in the elect fallen into a rebellion against him. 
Which reconciliation of them, if it had not been necessary, this great insti- 
tution of God had been in vain and to no purpose. I might say of this, , 
matter what the same apostle on behalf of the resurrection argues : 1 Cor. 
xv. 14, ; If Christ be not risen, then our preaching is in vain.' Thus I 
might say concerning your reconciliation, If what God and Christ have done 
had alone perfected it, and no more had been to be done in us, then is our 
preaching the Scriptures of the New Testament vain: Rom. x. 13-17, ' For 
whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved. How then 
shall they call on him in whom they have not believed ? and how shall they 
believe in him of whom they have not heard ? and how shall they hear with- 
out a preacher ? And how shall they preach, except they be sent ? as it 
is written, How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of 
peace, and bring glad tidings of good things ! So then faith cometh by 
hearing, and hearing by the word of God.' The word of God is God's 
ordination and appointment, without which none of us of years shall be 
saved. Here the necessity lies, it was God's pleasure so to order it ; if 
therefore our apostle makes a necessity of his preaching the gospel to men 
(' A necessity,' says he, 1 Cor. ix. 16, ' is laid upon me to preach the 
gospel), then there is a greater necessity that those that hear the message 
of it should obey it, if ever they be saved. For the necessity of his preach- 
ing the gospel was the foundation of the necessity that is laid upon all other 
ambassadors like to him. All this is farther illustrated by Rom. x., verses 13 
and 17 compared. Let us now consider how God hath threatened (2 Thess. 
i. 8, 9) finally to destroy them who obeyed not the gospel, who came not in 

Chap. I.J in our salvation. 110 

to him, and entertained not this infinite love and grace with all acceptation, 
in humbling themselves, believing on him and his Son, and turning unto 
him. And it will be manifest that God is more engaged to punish those 
his enemies for their refusal of bis entreaty, by his ambassadors, who are in 
his stead, than the greatest kings on earth aro, or can be thought, obliged 
to avenge an affront offered to their ambassadors. Head the parable of the 
vineyard, Luke xx. 

Let us next consider the interest which God the Father and Christ his 
Son have, and the part which they act in this our reconciliation. God the 
Father's part was to contrive the whole of our salvation, Christ's part was 
to purchase it. ' God was in Christ reconciling the world to himself,' &c. 
I have elsewhere discoursed of God the Father's original transaction with 
Christ about this,* which I will not repeat, only I cast in the single con- 
sideration of it in the text to enforce the thing in hand. In the 28th verse, 
his preface to all this is, ' All things are of God, who hath reconciled us to 
himself by Jesus Christ : ' the spirit of which connection I extract into 
this, that the great God, of whom all things else are, hath made this his 
masterpiece, and his heart was in it above all other things (and therefore 
he sets it against all things else), and his wisdom and all his other attri- 
butes were especially at work about this, ' who works all things according 
to the counsel of his own will.' As the same apostle says upon the same 
occasion, Eph. i. He therefore hath been most consultive about the effect- 
ing of this, and for the bringing it to its performance according to his own 
desire. And therefore he who hath contrived to effect all things else in 
such a manner wherein they shall be most for his own glory (' All things 
are of him and for him,' Rom. xi. 36), hath above all others contrived this 
business of man's salvation. And therefore we may be sure he was most 
regardful and heedful that it should be effected upon such terms as should 
be for his own high honour and glory, as well as our salvation ; that he 
might have glory by it, as well as we have peace. When that great pro- 
clamation of peace and goodwill to men was made by the angels at the birth 
of our Lord (which contains the whole of reconciliation on God's part), it 
runs thus : ' Glory be to God on high,' that is first ; and then it follows, 
' Peace on earth ; good will towards men.' This was to shew that he had 
so ordered it, that our peace and his glory should run along together. 
Now if we should have peace and pardon from him on account of what 
Christ hath done, and we should remain unreconciled to him both in heart 
and life, then here were dishonour to God the Most High, and a violation 
of peace on earth too. But surely he hath disposed matters so, that as he 
would shew himself a friend to you, and manifest good will to men, so withal 
he would appear a friend to himself, and true to his own interest, which is his 
glory. This is indeed but a general, and yet it comprehends all his attri- 
butes ; all and each of which are his glory. I shall instance particularly in 
the glory but of one or two of them. 

1. As to his holiness, when I discoursed of those transactions of the 
Father with Christ, I shewed that God, merely to give satisfaction to justice, 
ordained the sacrificing his Son. And it was (as we have it, Rom. iii. 26), 
' that he might be just, and the justifier of him that believes in Jesus.' 
Now if, to be true to that attribute, ' he spared not his own Son,' so then 
here he having another attribute as near and dear unto him, viz., holiness, 
that must be complied withal to vindicate its honour. And therefore, as 

* In the Discourse of Christ the Mediator, Vol. III. of his Works. [Vol. V. o 
this Edition. — Ed.] 


God will be just in saving, which cost Christ his blood, so he will be holy 
in saving us too. Therefore, ' as he that called you is holy, so you must be 
holy,' and ' called with an holy calling,' 2 Tim. i. 9. It is not his purpose 
of gi-ace towards you in Christ Jesus will serve the turn. Because it is 
written, 'Be ye holy, for I am holy,' 1 Pet. i. 15, 16. He is resolved on 
it, and therefore ' without holiness no man shall see God,' Heb. xii. Cer- 
tainly he abated not his Son the least point that justice demanded. If he 
would not that the cup should pass at his then so earnest entreaty, then 
if it were possible to suppose Christ would supplicate him now, to let re- 
generation or reconciliation pass off without effect in saving any of you, 
God would not. 

2. A second attribute he intended the glory of in the matter of reconci- 
liation between him and us, was principally the glory of his grace. He 
designed to set forth his love so as to attain the ends of loving. It is not 
to give forth peace only, but to manifest good will and kindness, as that 
speech of the angel shews, Luke ii. 14. Yea, the ground of his shewing 
mercy is his love : Eph. ii. 4, ' God who is rich in mercy, for the great 
love wherewith he loved us.' And although on our part our love and 
friendship to God is not the ground of his, yet it is the end or aim of his. 
Though he did not love us because we loved him first, yet he loved us that 
we might love him again, for ' He chose us that we should be holy in love,' 
Eph. i. 4. Therefore in those he saves, if there were not wrought an in- 
ward principle of love and friendship, and good will mutual again to him, 
that might answer this his love, his love would not have its end ; ancl 
would be finally cast away. For so we reckon love to be given away in 
loss when it is not answered in its kind ; that is, with a true love again. 
God would have his love valued and esteemed by those he saves ; for love 
is the dearest thing that any one hath to bestow, because whosoever hath a 
man's love hath all he hath, for it commands all. And therefore God, who 
is love (1 John iv. 8), will not cast away his love, especially not such a 
love as this. And yet this love were lost if not esteemed by us, and if 
esteemed by us it will work holiness in us, and we shall be ' holy before 
him in love,' Eph. i. 4. These arguments, to prove the necessity of our 
being reconciled to God, have been drawn from the part which God the 
Father hath in our reconciliation. 


The necessity of our being reconciled to God evinced from Christ's design in his 
work of reconciliation. 

The next argument shall be fetched from Christ and his part in recon- 
ciliation, of whom it is here said, ' God was in Christ reconciling,' &c. 
Christ's interest was considered by God, and Christ's concernment is such 
in this matter that I may without any scruple of diffidence pronounce, that 
Christ would rather lose all he hath on his part done or suffered for us, 
than that we should be saved without being reconciled to God by a true 
work of regeneration. 

In the foresaid transaction of God with Christ about the reconcilement 
of us, I shewed there was a covenant made between God and Christ in our 
behalf. And therein God the Father meant not to put such upon Christ as 

Chap. II." in our salvation. 121 

should continue wholly averse in disposition towards him ; for Christ by 
covenant was to be a husband as well as a redeemer from sin, and the 
agreement between him and bis Father was (as Jacob's with Laban), to pur- 
chase his wife to himself: Eph. v. 25-27, 'Husbands, love your wives, 
even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it; that he might 
sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word, that he 
might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, 
or any such thing ; but that it should be holy and without blemish.' It is 
but reason then, and what he deserved, that he should have such for his 
spouse as should love him again. This covenant between God the Father 
and the Son is rehearsed in Ps. ex., ' The Lord said to my Lord,' &c. And 
he took an oath to it, that 'he should be a priest,' ver. -1, which was a 
great word ; God the Father therein expressing the call he gave him. But 
then withal his Father engageth and promiseth that ' his people should be 
willing in the day of his power.' Thus the Father acts in his part of the 
covenant with Christ. And then Christ on his part resolved and agreed to 
see those he would save, to become ' his seed,' and to be born of him, or 
he would never have been satisfied : Isa. liii., ' He shall see his seed, and 
be satisfied.' He resolved that they should come to him, as his Father 
promised they should, as that speech of his shews : John vi., ' Ail that the 
Father hath given me shall come to me.' The Father not simply gave 
them to Christ to save them, but promised withal that they should come to 
Christ ; and coming be subject to him in all things, Eph. v., as the law of 
the marriage covenant requires. And there is a promise on Christ's part, 
to ' raise them up at the last day.' And to that end he ceaseth not till he 
presents them to himself, ' a glorious church, without spot or wrinkle,' 
Eph. v. 26, 27. Yea, I may not stick to say, that Christ otherwise would 
be content to lose all he now hath done, rather than that any one should be 
saved and not reconciled to God his Father. And the reason is manifest; 
for otherwise he should be the minister of sin, which he abhors. Thus the 
apostle argues, Gal. ii. 17. And it is the full and direct scope of the 
apostle there. For, treating of the doctrine of free justification or salvation 
in that epistle, which the adversaries thereof branded for a doctrine of licen- 
tiousness, the apostle abhors it with the greatest indignation, in saying 
that this were indeed to make Christ the minister of sin, if he should have 
died to procure the justification of any that are not sanctified. And from 
heaven Christ himself declared to Saul, that ' He sent him to open the eyes 
of the Gentiles, to turn them from darkness to light, from the power of 
Satan unto God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins, and an inherit- 
ance among them which are sanctified by faith that is in me,' Acts xxvi. 18 ; 
that is, to be a means of their regeneration. And otherwise he should but 
have tied God's hands from hurting us or destroyiug us, whilst we should 
have a licence left us to provoke him and continue in sin. No ; Christ is 
more tender of his Father's glory than so ; and though he is a ' Saviour 
perfect,' yet he becomes the ' Author of eternal salvation,' but ' unto those 
who obey him,' Heb. v. 8, 9, which none will do until born again. 

Lastly, The demonstration is drawn both from God the Father and Son 
jointly. This great design of their reconciling sinners, as agreed on by 
them, became matter of the greatest delight to them ; and which, when 
concluded, their hearts were infinitely taken up with ; as in Prov. viii. 
Wisdom, that is, Christ, exults in the remembrance of it, as it was in his 
own and Father's heart afore the world. Yea, and God's end in loving us, 
and Christ's end in dying, was to delight in our persons ; as Zeph. iii. 17, 


c He will rejoice over those he saves, and will rest in his love towards them,' 
as thinking his love well bestowed, and being abundantly satisfied and con- 
tented in it. And he promiseth Christ that he should greatly delight in 
the beauty of his queen, Ps. xlv. And Christ accordingly in that love-song 
declares his infinite delight in his spouse, and Cant. vii. 6, 'How fair and 
pleasant art thou, love, for delights ! ' It is Christ's speech. Now if to 
delight in those he saves were one great end of both in their counsels about 
ms ; then of necessity there must be wrought a reconciliation in us unto them, 
as well as a reconciliation for us by them : there is no way for them to 
attain delights in us, unless our hearts were won to them, to love and delight 
iin them again. It is true, God loved us when we were enemies, Rom. v. ; 
yet delight in us he could not, unless we be made friends to him. All the 
Hweetness of love lies in the reciprocation. There is nothing more grievous, 
] nore hateful, than to love and not to be beloved. As out of his own heart 
and experience he expresseth it, 2 Cor. xii. 15. Dulce est amare et amari. 
At least otherwise there is no rest in one's love, no contentedness or satis- 
faction in it. If God's end in saving us, indeed, were principally to pardon 
i is, then he need do no more than kings do when they pardon traitors : pass 
such an act upon the party, and there is an end. But God is also to make 
friends and favourites of them whom he pardons, and so to delight in them, 
p»nd to have communion w 7 ith them, graciously to accept of them, as well 
8,s pardon them: Eph. i. 6, 7, 'To the praise of the glory of his grace, 
-* Therein he hath made us accepted in the beloved;' over and above that 
' in him we have also redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, 
according to the riches of his grace.' And therefore he changeth the in 
■* card frame of men's hearts, and makes of enemies friends of them to him- 
s elf. Otherwise he could not rejoice in them. For can a man delight in a 
t oad or a serpent (between which creatures and us God hath put an 
e nmity) ? What fellowship and communion can light and darkness have ? 
The conclusion of this matter discoursed is, that although God the Father 
h.ath transacted all these things from eternity, and that Jesus Christ hath 
long since performed all that which might pacify and reconcile his Father, 
a nd procure our atonement with his Father, according to the command and 
r ecpiest of his Father ; yet it was withal agreed mutually then by them, 
that not a man, no, not an elect man, should have benefit by either, until 
t'tiey come in to be reconciled. And that state of this affair I explain by 
this instance or similitude grounded upon Scripture, that suppose one oweth 
a great sum, and the creditor to whom he oweth it is willing to forgive it 
u nto this debtor, upon payment made by another whom the creditor doth 
under-hand himself procure to pay it, at his request^ yet withal unknown 
as: yet unto the debtor , but w r ith this compact of the surety and creditor, 
tl lat when this transaction shall come to be made known by them to the 
debtor of what they have secretly done, he, upon effectual notice thereof, 
s'uall come in and acknowledge the debt, seeking the remitting of it unto 
him, and acquitment of him, with professed subjection to them both for 
ever. Until this be performed by him, the bond, though by agreement can- 
celled, as in respect of any other payment, yet is still to lie and be kept in 
the creditor's hands, who obligeth himself not to give a discharge or release 
to the debtor, or deliver in his bond as cancelled, until he makes his 
address, and humbly acknowledgeth the debt ; seeks for an acquittance, 
yea, and gets the party who paid it to go along with him to the creditor, 
to mediate and plead for him his satisfaction given him ; and sue forth the 
acceptation of that payment of his for him in particular, undertaking the 

Chap. II. in our salvation. 123 

party's heartiest and sinccrest engagement of future love and service to both 
for ever. And thus does Christ's righteousness and our debt lie both in 
God the Father's bands, the creditor, until the sinner for whom the pay- 
ment was made shall thus come in. And if we could suppose that Christ 
had died ten thousand deaths (which was but one sacrifice once offered) for 
one man, yet both Father and Son have and are resolved that this man 
should never be the better for it till he comes in. 

And in expression similar unto this management and ordering of this 
matter, you shall find the Scriptures speaking in both the Old and New 
Testament, compared. Thero is to this purpose a passage in Job xxxiii. 
22-26, ' His soul draweth near to the grave, and his life to the destroyers. 
If there be a messenger with him, an interpreter, one among a thousand, to 
shew unto man his uprightness : then he is gracious, and saith, Deliver him 
from going down into the pit : I have found a ransom. His flesh shall be 
fresher than a child's : he shall return to the days of his youth : he shall 
pray unto God, and he will be favourable to him : and he shall see his face 
with joy : for he will render unto man his righteousness.' They are the 
words of Elihu, which, taken together with the foregoing, from ver. 15, and 
then with those which follow after, do set out a fair pattern or draught of 
the workings of saving conversion, at the rate they went in those ancient 
times, collected by the observations of Elihu upon divers persons in his 
view, and set afore Job, to provoke him to conform himself unto them (as 
his only course to take), with encouragements of mercy from God, that in 
like manner God will be gracious to him, to restore him to his favour, and 
that he shall come to ' see his face with joy,' ver. 26. And together with 
the works or operations, he sets forth the means, which God then often did 
use to work upon men's hearts. As first, visions and dreams, ver. 15-17 
(for there this his discourse of conversion begins), ' In a dream, in a vision of 
the night, when deep sleep falleth upon men, in slumbering upon the bed ; 
then he openeth the ears of men, and sealeth their instruction, that he may 
withdraw man from his purpose, and hide pride from man.' And this dis- 
pensation was the more ordinary means in those times (although to us now 
extraordinary). Then secondly, another means were great sicknesses, even 
unto death : ver. 19, ' He is chastened also with pain upon his bed, and 
the multitude of his bones with strong pain.' And thirdly, the awakenings 
thereby are followed by the ' seasonable instructions ' and ' directions of a 
teacher,' one skilled in soul-saving work ; ' an interpreter ' of God's mind, 
to shew what that is for which God saves man, as also what a sinner is to 
do, ver. 23, &c. 

And that such a saving work of true conversion is intended, the whole 
sense of his discourse, from the aforesaid ver. 15, doth plainly manifest. 
And first, this his discourse at the entrance shews, at the 16th and 17th 
verses : ' Then he openeth the ears of men, and sealeth their instruction, 
that he may withdraw man from his purpose,' his resolved course of sin- 
ning, ' and hide pride from man ;' that is, truly to humble him, and break 
the staff of the pride of his heart. 2. His more full and special instance 
he gives in the middle of his narration ; the sick man's case, in the verses 
afore : taken together with this inference he draws from it for instruction 
unto all men, ver. 27, 28, ' He looketh upon men, and if any say, I have 
sinned, and perverted that which was right, and it profited me not ; he will 
deliver his soul from going into the pit, and his life shall see the light.' 
And 3. The conclusion of all, in the 29th and 30th verses, as much doth 
declare, where Elihu sets a remark upon it : ' Lo, all these things God 


worketh oftentimes ' (twice or thrice) ' with man : to bring back his soul 
from the pit, and to enlighten him with the light of the living :' that is, with 
the saving light of life ; as John viii. 12 speaks of them that ' live by faith.' 
And this speech is the general close unto these instances foregone, and 
gathers in all he had said, from the 15th verse downwards; and signifies 
all the outward ways and means, with many other the like, which God had 
then a-foot, to work savingly upon men ; as also all those particular inward 
operations which had been instanced in, and which might be drawn forth 
out of one or the other of these passages. 

And those particulars are, 1. Conviction and confession of sin, with 
brokenness of heart : ver. 27, ' If any man say I have sinned, and per- 
verted that which was right,' &c. 2. A laying hold by faith on Christ's 
righteousness and ransom for his own righteousness and redemption, when 
he is affected with that sense of his sin, and own un-uprightness, which 
was and is the greatest point which that interpreter shewed or discovered 
to him ; instructing him where and in whom the true and perfect righteous- 
ness of fallen man doth lie, which this humbled soul desires, prays, and 
seeks for, and to be made his ; and God to be gracious to him, and accept 
him therein ; which God accordingly delivers and renders to him. These 
are summarily in verses 23, 24, and 26. And this is accompanied with 
turning from sin, in uprightness of heart and holiness of life, for time to 
come ; in a course utterly opposite to his former perverting that which was 
right, which, ver. 27, he confessed he had run into. And there is a most 
comfortable issue of all these upon this man ; which begins at ver. 24, 
J Then he is gracious, and says, Deliver him.' Then, namely, when the 
interpreter's instructions (whereof some are implied, others expressed) have 
had then* due course and effects, in all such gracious workings specified, 
in the man's heart, answerable to the matter of his message ; which shewed 
this man what is man's uprightness ; which in a summary contains direc- 
tions unto all these ; and which being impressed on his soul as the wax is 
with the seal ; for it is with a sealing the instructions (as the word afore 
was, ver. 16) he must necessarily be supposed to have had these proper 
prints conformable thereunto. Now the issues or consequential privileges 
hereof are two. 

1. That God doth then, or thereupon, out of his grace, absolve and pro- 
nounce the justification of him. ' The Lord is gracious, and says, Deliver 
him.' The word deliver signifies redeem him, that is, from the guilt of his 
sin, and hell, or God's wrath. Thus forgiveness of sins is styled, Eph. i. 
7, ' In whom you have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of 
sins, through the riches of his grace.' The word deliver him, here signifies 
redeem him. And he, that is, God, says it within himself. For justifica- 
tion is an immanent act, in God's breast and heart, and that is that justi- 
fication we call inforo cceli, in the court of heaven. He says it before and 
unto Christ the mediator. He pronounceth the sentence as in heaven, as 
the supreme Lawgiver, ' able to save and to destroy.' Yea, he often says 
it and applies it to the man's own conscience, and by a word of his mes- 
sengers declares it. And then he adds the ground for and through which 
he doth it; for (says he) - 1 have found a ransom ;' and thus he applies it 
to this particular sinner. And then, 

2. God further causeth this justified soul to ' see his face with joy,' ver. 
26 ; God lifting up the light of his countenance, and causing his favour to 
shine upon his soul, with joy greater than when corn and oil increase. 
Which dispensation, after great humblings, deep repentings, long and much 

Chap. III.] in our salvation. J25 

seeking of his face, God is wont to gratify sincere new converts with 
Rom. iv. 5-7, and Rom. v. 1, 2, 3, 5, and 11. 

And 2dly. That initial conversion wrought at first, which is called re- 
generation, is specially intended, and that the words are not meant only 
of men renewed or converted already, but declined — though they are indeed 
included — the words of those 27th and 28th verses evidence, ' He looketh 
upon men ; and if any say, I have sinned, and perverted that which was 
right, and it profited me not ; he will deliver his soul from going into the 
pit, and his life shall see the light.' He lays two things together : 1. That 
they are a general invitation and encouragement given to all men who shall 
in like manner come in and apply themselves to him ; that God will be 
likewise gracious, and pardon and receive any of them into grace and favour, 
and ' deliver his soul from going down into the pit,' as he had done this 
sick convert : and so general and indefinite a declaration, must necessarily 
respect and take in men unregenerate. The bulk of mankind shall hear 
this ; who mostly lie in unregeneracy in all times, especially did in those. 
Thus John saith of his times, 1 John v. 19 ; hence therefore that exhorta- 
tion and encouragement to repentance, ' If any man say I have sinned,' 
&c, must in a special manner intend the first work of regeneration, and 
initial repentance. 

The second thing is, that this general proclamation is brought in as a 
corollary or inference from the example of this sick convert ; and comes in 
upon it, as Elihu's deduction out of it. And therefore the case of that sick 
man proposed, must involve and extend to a first conversion, which we call 
regeneration. And it is not to be limited only to such as had been con- 
verted already. And truly the tenor of those words, ' To shew to this man 
his uprightness,' doth argue him to have been one ignorant afore, of what 
course to take for him to be saved, till taught by this instructor. 

But lastly, The final conclusion of all puts it out of exception : ver. 29, 
1 Lo, all these things worketh God oftentimes with man ;' and it is a general 
one too, comprehending these, and all the blessed operations or effects that 
God doth work upon any, to save any of the sons of men (who at any time 
are saved) from hell ; and not to be limited to restoring of those patients 
that are sick, from bodily sickness, or of men who had had a work of 
regeneration already, and had gone astray ; but speaks to all, of all sorts, 
and to the unregenerate in a special manner. 


That we may be reconciled to God, it is necessary for us to be convinced that 
we are enemies to God. — That our estate is dangerous. — That yet God is 
appeasable; that there is a mediator by whom the soul may come to God; 
that ice must also seek God and his favour in Christ; and seek him with 
confession of, and mourning for, sin. 

The particular passages which a true and sincere reconcilement doth 
require, are either such as prepare the heart to be willing to be reconciled, 
or such wherein the substance or nature of reconciliation itself, or wherein 
the frame of a heart reconciled, doth consist. 

1. For the preparing us to be reconciled it is necessary that we be con- 
vinced that we are enemies to God, and that he accounts us such ; and 
that so long as we remain in that estate, he is also an enemy to us, and can 


be no other. This what God in Christ hath done, gives demonstration of. 
He would not save us upon Christ's bare entreaty, but he would have satis- 
faction, and have Christ feel what it was to stand in the room of sinners. 
Yea, one end why God saved us by way of satisfaction to his justice, was 
that sinners pardoned might, in what Christ suffered, see and thoroughly 
apprehend what sin had deserved. And is it not then requisite that they 
should at least lay to heart and be sensible of their own treasons and 
rebellions, and that God and they are at odds ? Traitors must be convicted 
and condemned ere they are capable of a legal pardon ; as sentence must 
be pronounced ere a legal appeal can be made. It is so in man's courts, 
and it is so in God's proceedings also. Neither indeed will men be brought 
to sue out for his favour and prize his love till then ; for it was never heard 
any man did heartily sue to one for pardon and peace, with whom he did 
not first apprehend himself at variance. 

2. It is necessary also that men apprehend the danger of going on in 
this estate ; for though one should know another and himself to be enemies, 
if he thought his enemy were either careless or weak, he would slight recon- 
ciliation with him, and though sought unto would not seek it. He who is 
mentioned, Luke xiv. 31, 32, sat down and considered if he were able to go 
out and meet his enemy, else he would never have sought conditions of 
peace. So the soul, until it apprehends and considers (finding God and 
itself enemies) what a sore enemy he is, and what a fearful thing it is to fall 
into his hands (Heb. x. 30, 31), will not till then care to seek out to him. 

3. If one apprehended God implacable, not inclinable to peace, or hard 
to be entreated, he would never come at him neither. Thus David, when 
Saul and he were at odds, suborned Jonathan secretly to observe w r hat mind 
Saul bare towards him, 1 Sam. xx., and when, at the 33d verse, he found 
him bent to kill him, David came not at him. So the Jews came away 
from God, as a wild ass from its owner, Jer. ii., because ' there was no hope.' 

4. The soul comes to be persuaded better things of God, and things that 
accompany reconciliation, and conceives hopes that reconciliation is to be 
had, and had for it. And therefore in all whom God means to reconcile to 
himself, after he hath humbled them he fixeth a secret persuasion on their 
hearts that he is ready to be reconciled to them, if they will be reconciled 
to him. God gives them a secret hint of his intended good will to them. 
He reveals what a gracious God he is, and how freely he pardons. And 
because that all acquaintance begins w 7 ith knowledge, and is the ground of 
it, therefore God, when he brings any into this covenant, the first thing he 
doth is, ' He teacheth them to know him,' Jer. xxxi. 34, and ' gives them 
a new spirit,' that they may be able to know him after another manner than 
ever before. He teacheth them to know him, especially in his mercy, in 
those vast thoughts of mercy laid up in him, Jer. ix. 24 ; to know him to 
be ' a God that ever hath loving-kindness in the earth :' though not in hell 
to devils, yet in earth to men, and that therein he delighteth. He enableth 
him also to see what happiness is to be had in communion with him, by 
reason of those glorious excellencies which are in him, and makes such 
representations of himself to the soul as allures the heart, Hosea ii. 14 ; God 
draws the heart, John vi. 44, for in the 45th verse it follows, ' They shall 
all be taught of God,' referring to these places of Isaiah and Jeremiah ; for 
says Christ, ' It is written in the prophets, they shall be taught of God.' 
And the lesson is (as hath been said) to know God ; and God doth this in 
a peculiar manner, working another kind of knowledge of himself than a 
man had before, or than other men have ; for it is a knowledge that 


enamours their hearts with him, and allures them with his good will. An. I 
(says Christ) every mau that hath thus heard and learnt cometh to God. 
Though all hear the same message of reconciliation, yet God whispers 
something to a man's heart that he doth not to every man. The same God 
who from everlasting spake unto his Son, and wooed him for us, doth speak 
likewise secretly to a man's heart, to allure and woo him to come in to him. 

5. And yet, fifthly, if the soul should look upon God alone, as he is in 
himself, a God just as well as merciful, he would thereby he discouraged to 
come alone into his presence, who is a consuming fire. The glory of God's 
justice would dash him and confound him. And as Adam trembled, so 
would he, and could do no otherwise. It is the instinct of nature (witness 
the heathen sacrifices and lesser gods, as mediators to the great God) to 
seek out ' a daysman,' Job. ix. 33. Yea, it is the way of man seeking 
friendship with another to use the mediation of some other that is great 
with him that is wronged. Therefore God teacheth such a one, to whom 
he means to be reconciled, to know his Son also, whom he hath sent as his 
beloved Son, in whom he is well pleased with others too. God holds and 
sets forth him as a propitiation, • that in his blood he may both be just, and 
the justifier of us,' Rom. hi. 25. And he causeth his glory to shine, and 
appear ' in the face of Jesus Christ,' and secretly points and directs the heart 
with an instinct to go to Christ : ' Every man that hath heard and learnt of 
the Father, cometh to me,' John vi. 45, as the beasts were taught to go 
to the ark. And we thus coming to Christ by faith, and taking hold of 
him by the hand thereof, Christ then leads us by the hand to God, Eph. 
iii. 18. "We have •joooay^yriv, conduct, and entrance, and access to God, 
having such a person with us, and his interest in God to plead for us, and 
whose blood and satisfaction we may plead ; we have free liberty of speech 
Kahlr.Giav, to plead his righteousness and satisfaction, and that with bare- 
facedness and boldness, as the word signifies ; not to stand as condemned 
prisoners with our faces covered, but as persons acquitted in Christ, plead- 
ing pardon and confidence. And this is necessary, for as God intended to 
shew us no favour without satisfaction, so no more can we apprehend that 
his favour, but in and through Christ's alone satisfaction : Rom. iii. 25, 
' God hath therefore set forth Christ a propitiation by faith in his blood, that 
he might be both just, and a justifier of him that believeth in Jesus.' And 
how God should be just, and a justifier of a sinner, no man could ever 
apprehend till he bottoms his faith on Christ's righteousness alone, which 
only can stand before justice, and break through it unto God. 

6. And yet, sixthly, when all this is clone, the man must be set a-work to 
seek, as a condemned man, God and his favour in Christ, and peace and 
reconciliation through him for life, Job. xxxiii. 24, ' He shall pray to him, 
and he will be gracious, and say, Deliver him, I have found a ransom.' 
God himself first sought to Christ, and sought him with all earnestness and 
vehemency to become a mediator to him for us, and therefore refflkm it is 
that he should stand upon it to be sought unto, ere we obtain peVce with 
him. Yea, and though his own Son hath performed it, and he covenanted 
with him that he should see his seed, yet God expected that his Son should 
seek to him for the acceptation of his mediation, who yet hath merited it, 
and who undertook it at his request. And therefore you see what a long 
prayer he puts up, John xvii. ; though he says at the 4th and 9th verses, 
he hath ' finished the work he gave him to do,' yet he prays for the persons 
redeemed, and the acceptation of the redemption wrought, throughout that 
chapter. God hath told him, Ps. ii. 28, he must ' ask the heathen for his 


inheritance ;' and though they were his inheritance, as he was his Son, and 
whom besides he had purchased and bought with his blood, yet he must 
ask them. Yea, that glory which was his own before the world was, he seeks 
to his Father for, ver. 5. And if it were thus between God and his Son 
in the business of reconciliation for us, and that in what he might challenge 
as his own, then surely much more it must be so between God and us, 
whom this reconciliation most concerns. He therefore pours upon a 
man a spirit of grace and supplication, Zech. xii. 10, that is, a spirit to 
supplicate for grace. 

And the same is evident from the nature of the thing itself. God is the 
partj- superior, and it is fit the inferior should seek to the superior. And 
also he is the person wronged ; and though he be willing and desirous to be 
reconciled more than ever, yet he will have his favour prized. David 
longed to be reconciled to Absalom, yet he would be sought unto, for he 
would have his favour prized to the utmost, and not cast away. 

Yea, and to be in favour with God being better than life, God will be 
sought to with more earnestness, contention, and constancy, than a con- 
demned man seeks for life : Jer. xxix. 13, ' They shall find me when they 
seek and search for me with their whole heart.' And Mat. xi. 12, ' The 
violent take it by force.' Though God be most willing to part with this 
great blessing, yet that it may be prized and sought, indeed he doth as it 
were hold it fast in his hand, and will have it wrung from him by force, as 
it were : Mat. xi. 12, ' And from the days of John the Baptist, until now, 
the kingdom of heaven suffereth violence, and the violent take it by force.' 
And in Luke xiii. 24, ' Strive ' (saith he), ' for many seek.' The word in 
the original signifies an eager violent contention and wrestling of mind. 
And there is reason, from what God did in Christ for us, for this also ; for 
how earnestly did God seek to his Son for us ! He expressed all the 
earnestness that might be, laying his command upon him, and he added an 
oath to it, &c. And doth he not expect earnestness at our hands ? Yea, 
how did Christ also, in the days of his flesh, put up an atonement, seeking 
to his Father with strong cries and tears ! And shall we think to be heard 
with dull and faint cries ? Nay, look, as God himself was more earnest in 
this matter of reconciling us than ever in anything else, so he will have us 
seek to him with more earnestness and contention than ever we sought 
anything, even life itself. And surely, if God hath bidden us seek peace 
with men, yea, and to ensue it (as in Ps. xxxiv. 14, 1 Peter iii. 11), that 
is, though it fly away, yet to follow it, much more are we then to seek 
peace with God himself ; and though he seem to reject us, yet to follow him, 
and press upon him as it were from one room to another, that is, from one 
performance to another, and so to ' follow hard after him,' as David says, 
Ps. lxiii. 1, 2, 3, to verse the 8th, 'My soul folio weth hard after thee : 
Thy right hand upholdeth me.' 

7. He will be sought unto with confession of, and mourning for, offend- 
ing him. For being in bitterness, Zech. xii. 10, and mourning, is joined 
with supplication for grace. 

And this is necessary to reconciliation, because an acknowledgment is 
to be made, Jer. h. 13. God would be sought humbly unto by us, as 
those that are traitors and rebels. And God will have men know when he 
pardons, that he knows what he pardons, and therefore will have them 
acknowledge what they deserve, ' that every mouth might be stopped, and 
become guilty,' and obnoxious in their own acknowledgment before him, 
Rom. iii. 19. As if a man will become wise, he must become a fool ; so a 

Chap. I V.J in our salvation. 121) 

man that will become a friend to God, must turn enemy against himself, 
aud judge himself worthy of destruction. And God will have the freeness 
and glory of his grace acknowledged in pardoning ; and therefore will have 
us confess our evil ways and deservedness of destruction. In the 3Gth of 
Ezekiel, when at tho 31st verse he says, ' that when he pardoned them 
they should remember their evil ways, and acknowledge themselves worthy 
to be destroyed ;' tho reason follows in the next verse : * Be it known to 
you, I pardon it not for your sakes ;' I do it freely : and that ye may know 
so much, remember your evil ways ; be ashamed and confounded for 
your ways. 

And there is good reason also that mourning should be joined to all this, 
from what God did in Christ when he reconciled us to himself. 

1. For, first, was not Christ, who never knew the pleasure of sin, put 
to grief? Yea, all the sorrow and smart was his : Isa. liii. 4, ' Surely ho 
hath borne our griefs,' was ' a man of sorrow,' &c. Which sorrows were 
put upon him by his Father also: ver. 10, ' He put him to grief;' and 
therein indeed put himself to grief. And if they both were thus put to grief 
and afflicted, for our reconciliation and peace, then surely the least that 
we, who have tasted of, and enjoyed the pleasures of sin, can do, is to 
grieve also, for that thing which made both Father and Son to grieve. God 
required of Christ to bear our sorrows. Now the sorrows of death, and of 
his wrath, God exacts not of thee ; but the sorrow of a friend, the sorrow 
of kindness, which causeth not death as other sorrows do, but peace arid 
joy in the very performance of it, ' repentance never to be repented of.' 
He requires thee only to mourn kindly for thy sins that pierced him ; and 
such a mourning the nature of reconciliation requires. For, 

2. Secondly, Where mourning for offending God is wanting, there is no 
sign of any good will yet wrought in the heart to God, nor of love to him, 
without which God will never accept a man. ' For the least thing wherein 
good will towards a friend whom we have injured can be shewn, is to mourn 
and be sorry for it : as the least requital for a kindness is to be thankful. 
And this all that have affections in them do, when they can in no way else 
make amends. 

3. Else there is no hope of amendment. God will not pardon till he 
sees hopes of amendment. Now, until a man confess his sin, and that with 
bitterness, it is a sign he loves it, Job xx. 12-14. Whilst he hides it, 
spares it, and forsakes it not, it is sweet in his mouth ; and therefore till 
he confess it, and mourn for it, it is a sign it is not bitter to him, and so 
he will not forsake it. A man will never leave sin till he finds bitterness in 
it ; and, if so, then he will be in bitterness for it, Zech. xii. 10 ; and ' godly 
sorrow works repentance,' 2 Cor. vii. 10. 


How our reconciliation to God consists in renouncing all friendship and inte- 
rests which stand in competition with his ; and in choosing him for our 
alone friend and portion ; in resigning all to him; in having a disposition 
and nature like to God ; and also in all our addresses to God proceeding 
from an inward principle of pure good will unto God. 

8. Eighthly ; He that will be reconciled to God must part with, and for- 
sake, all other friends and lovers ; renounce and break off all interests and 

VOL. VI. i 


correspondences with them, and choose God for his sole friend and por- 
tion. And he must choose God for ever, to cleave to him with full purpose 
of heart. 

(1.) He must renounce all other friendships : James iv. 4, ' Ye adul- 
terers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is 
enmity with God ? "Whosoever therefore shall be a friend of the world is 
the enemy of God.' As God will not have us serve other masters, so not 
to have other friends : ' Whosoever doth not forsake father, mother,' 
&c, ' is unworthy of me,' says Christ, Luke xiv. 26. And still what God 
hath done in Christ for reconciling us, will persuade to it. 

[1.] First, God was content to part with his Son, a friend, an old friend, 
and a bosom friend, brought up with him ; and yet he was content for a time 
to forsake him. Witness that speech, ' My God, my God, why hast thou 
forsaken me '?' And Christ was content to part with and leave his Father 
for a time. That speech, ' For this cause a man shall forsake father and 
mother,' is, in Eph. v. 31, applied to Christ, in his giving himself to the 
church, as the context shews. 

And he came down from heaven for to make such friends. And thus 
each of them parted with their old friends to get new. So do you, and be 
content to forsake the dearest you have delighted in, and have been brought 
up with. The church forsook her father's house. 

[2.] The nature of reconciliation requires it ; for friendship with any- 
thing else is enmity with God, James iv. 4. A friendship not only with 
proclaimed enemies, open sins, but with all the things the world hath, is 
vanity * with God. A believer may have a lordship over them, but not 
friendship with them. He may use them as strangers and servants, but 
not as friends ; so they must not have his heart. ' He that hates not 
father and mother is unworthy of me,' says Christ, that is, not worthy of 
my friendship, and such a friend as I am and mean to be. 

[3.] Choose him alone for your God, to betake yourselves unto him for 
ever. Friendship is entered into by choice. Kindred indeed is not, for I 
chose not who was to be my father ; who shall be the son of my mother is 
not in my choice : but friendship goes by choice. So Jonathan chose 
David : 1 Sam. xx. 30, ' Thou hast chosen the son of Jesse' (saith Saul). 
So the church : Hos. ii. 7, ' She shall follow after lovers, but she shall not 
overtake them ; and she shall seek them, but shall not find them : then 
shall she say, I will go and return to my first husband ; for then was it 
better with me than now.' She forsakes all other lovers, and betakes her- 
self to God ; and what says God ? Verse 23, ' I will say, They are my 
people ' ; and they shall' answer my love again, and ' say, Thou art my 
God,' ver. 23. Which place shews the reason whence it may be enforced. 
For God, you heard, chose you, and gave you to Christ before you were, 
and he chose Christ for you to be your mediator, and said concerning him, 
' Thou art a priest,' and that he would not repent his choice. Now, in like 
manner as God did choose you, so must you also choose him. As God 
chooseth. you ' freely,' Hos. xiv. 14, out of good will, and pitcheth his 
choice upon your persons, so must you choose him freely, and choose 
him, as Jonathan chose David to be his friend, though to the loss of a 
kingdom, as Saul told him, 1 Sam. xx. 30. So do thou choose God, though 
to thy undoing in the world ; and as he chose you for ever, never to cast 
you off, making an everlasting covenant with Christ for you, giving him a 
charge to save you, choosing you out of an everlasting love : so you are to 
* Qu. 'enmity"? — Ed. 


choose him to he your God for e^er. And, as Jonathan's heart cleaving to 
David, he aware to him, and entered into covenant with him, so must you 
do with God. ■ I havo sworn' (says David), ' and I will perform it,' 
Ps. cxix. And as no difficulty could put God by from his purpose he had 
took up towards you, as you heard, so strong was he in it, so bent and 
set upon it ; so let nothing that can fall out in your way, losses or 
crosses, that you meet with for him, alter your purpose towards him. 
As nothing can separate 3*ou from his love, so let nothing separate him 
from yours. 

9. Ninthly, let thy heart resign up itself, and all that it hath, and devote 
it all unto God for ever, to be commanded and used by him. Thus friends 
use to do, and thus God did for you. For if he ' spared not his own Son, 
how shall he not with him give you all things else ? ' Let all you have be 
God's ; giving up yourselves first unto the Lord, as they in 2 Cor. viii. 5. 
Let God have all thy understanding, will, affections, and whatever else. 
Let all be his, to command in anything as he pleaseth, and study how to 
set all a- work for him ; for he set the infinite depths of his wisdom a- work 
to find out a way to be friends with you, and chose that which would shew 
most love ; and so do you choose the things that will most please him : 
Isa. lvi. 4 and xliv 5, ' Subscribe with your hands to the Lord, and say, I 
am his,' even as friends use to say, Yours to command, and All I have is at 
your service. God wrote with his own hand your names in heaven (Heb. 
xii. 23), in the heart of Christ ; and he wrote it down in the books of his 
decrees, and made Christ subscribe to it that he should be a priest. And 
so subscribe you, that you will be for ever his to command and use. 

10. And tenthly, 6/xdvo/a, or likeness of disposition, is the only sure 
lasting ground and foundation of friendship, and is the soul of it, so as it is 
impossible two should long be friends, unless they agree in their minds and 
affections, loving and liking the same things ; ' Can two walk together and 
not agree ? ' Amos iii. 3. Therefore, you must get stamped upon your 
hearts a likeness to God in holiness, whereby to hate where God hates, and 
to love where he loves, so as to become an enemy to his enemies, and a 
friend to his friends. And in this respect David is called a man after God's 
own heart ; that is, whose mind and disposition was fashioned to the Lord's 
in all things. So Ps. cxix. 127, 128, ' I hate every false way; but thy law 
I esteem aright concerning all things.' So do you love and approve holi- 
ness in all things : in the abstract and concrete, in the word as it is de- 
livered, and in men's lives and hearts as it is practised and appears. And 
so the believer also hates sin in himself and others, and counts God's ene- 
mies as his own. Thus David did, Ps. cxix. 21-23. And this in Scripture 
is termed a true heart, Heb. x. 22 ; true as a man to his friend, as to his 
own self. True and faithful, as a spouse to her husband ; true and loyal, 
as subjects to their native prince. Job xxii. 21, 22, 'Acquaint thyself with 
him ' (there is an exhortation to friendship with God), ' and be at peace. 
Receive, I pray thee, the law at his mouth.' 

11. Eleventhly, Accordingly, a man that is thus reconciled, must endea- 
vour to walk and behave himself as unto a friend. The nature of recon- 
ciliation requires it : Prov. xviii. 24, 'He that hath friends must carry him- 
self friendly.' And Christ hath said, ' If ye be my friends, then keep my 
commandments,' John xv. 14. Therefore you must endeavour so to do, 
and to do it upon that motive chiefly ; and to walk with God, as Enoch 
did, observing all God's carriages to you, and yours to God-ward; as one 
that is reconciled observes him in all his dealings, interprets all in love, 


depends on him, trusts on him, &e. And also, watch over yourselves in all 
your ways, and be fearful to displease him and his goodness, Hosea. iii. 5. 

12. Only, in the last place, all these addresses tending to reconciliation 
must proceed from an inward principle of pure good will unto God, which 
is the soul of reconciliation, and which, therefore, God regards and requires 
above all things else, not only in respect of his own greatness and sove- 
reignty (which exacts all in the creature to be for him, Rom. xi. 36, and 
to be wholly referred unto him), but also in a way of ingenuity. He is the 
superior, yea sovereign, in this friendship. The nature of true reconcilia- 
tion requires it, especially with respect to such an one, who, being so 
infinitely above us, doth condescend to this relation of friendship with us ; 
yea, and subjects himself to all, even the lowest laws and expressions of love 
and friendship, which any, the meanest friend on earth, can be supposed to 
do. Aristotle indeed denies that the true law of friendship can hold between 
one too much superior and inferior ; for the interest of one riseth so high 
to sovereignty as excludeth pure good will ; and in the inferior, it falls so 
low to subjection, as it admits too great a mixture of by-ends ; and so true 
friendship is excluded on either hand. But this philosopher never knew 
our God, nor yet the power of the divine nature in us. He could not have 
imagined that God, who is so great, could be so good, and stoop unto such 
low carriages and terms towards us as (to instance in one out of the text) 
to ' beseech us to be reconciled. 

But above all, this is expected by him whose friendship is wholly free. 
The title of it is free grace, merely out of pure good will, ' The good plea- 
sure of his will,' and can have no other ends. And all, without such sin- 
cere observance of God, is but plain flattery. And God, who also is so wise 
as not to be mocked, accounts it so ; for so he judgeth and pronounceth of 
those that yet earnestly sought him ; Ps. lxxviii. 34-37, ' They sought 
him, and sought him early;' that is, diligently 7 . 'When he slew them, 
they sought him ; and they returned and inquired early after God. And 
they remembered that God was their Hock, and the high God their Redeemer. 
Nevertheless they did flatter him with their mouth, and they lied unto him 
with their tongues. For their heart was not right with him, neither were 
they stedfast in his covenant.' But God is not mocked ; for though men 
cannot see and discover thus much often in those they deal with, yet God 
doth, who searcheth the heart, takes notice of it, you see, and deals with 
men accordingly. Now flatterers are distinguished from friends by this : 
that a flatterer is one who seeketh indeed friendship, and abounds in offices 
of friendship for his own ends, and chiefly out of by-respects ; but a true 
friend is one who, besides by-respects, doth things oat of good will to the 
party. God doth indeed give those who seek reconciliation with him leave 
to have a respect to themselves, their own safety, and recompence of re- 
ward, for else he were not a true friend to them, if he did not suffer them 
to look to their own good, which as he subordinately professeth to have 
aimed at in their reconciliation to himself, though contrived chiefly for his 
own glory, so may they; and therefore, says Christ, Luke xii. 4, 5, 'I say 
to you, my friends ' (to speak in the language of the text), ' fear him that 
can kill body and soul.' So as to fear God, as one who is able to cast us 
into hell, may stand with friendship. ' I say to you, my friends,' there is 
the fear of hell allowed those who are in communion with him, and also 
hopes of heaven. So God said to Abraham, whom he calls his friend, ' I 
am thy exceeding great reward.' And one eye he had thereto: Heb. xi. 16, 
'But now they desire a better country, that is, an heavenly: wherefore God 

Chap. IV.] in our salvation. 188 

is not ashamed to be called their God : for he hath prepared for them a 
city.' And Moses too, ver. 26, ' esteemed the reproach of Christ greater 
riches than the treasures in Egypt: for he had respect unto the recompence 
of the reward.' And this Moses God treated as a man doth his friend: 
Bzod. xxxiii. 11, 'And the Lord spake unto Moses face to face, as a man 
speaketh unto his friend.' But yet, if there be no further principle of 
good will predominate, it is but flattery; and though I confess that happily 
in one newly scared out of his natural estate, this principle is not so soon 
and so easily discerned, } r et after a while it may ; which, because it is the 
main and soul of all the former acts, I will therefore a little more enlarge 
upon it. And herein I will not attempt to affix a different character of 
friendship and flattery upon each and every of those particular acts and 
passages of reconciliation formerly mentioned, nor keep punctually unto all 
those acts specified in the 78th Psalm, though this is seizable, and might 
be done ; as, for example, it is here said, ' When he slew them, then they 
remembered he was their Rock and Redeemer.' A traveller in fair weather 
passeth by a rock, minds and regards it not ; but in a storm, he runs for 
shelter to it, but yet dwells not there. But one truly wrought on, though 
he first run to God in his distress, and after often doth so, yet ever after 
he makes him his house and dwelling-place, Ps. xc. 1. It is the voice of 
the whole church, age after age, ' Lord, thou hast been our dwelling-place 
in all generations.' And in the next Psalm xci., ver 1, ' He that dwells in 
the secret place of the Most High, shall abide under the shadow of the 
Almighty.' I observe, 

1. That it is the description of a man truly godly to be one that dwells 
in God, yea, and in the secret place, the heart, the bosom of God, and 
hath intimate communion with him. He affects that room, and if he can- 
not get in, is still knocking at it, takes it up for his constant abode. And 2. 
A shelter in it, and from it, comes in it secondarily as to his aim, for it is 
the promise made upon it. ' He shall abide under the shadow,' that is, 
the protection, ' of the Almighty.' It is the love of God he principally aims 
to dwell in ; 1 John iv. 16, ' God is love ; and he that dwells in love 
dwells in God, and God in him.' 

2. I might, secondly, observe the like upon that other passage, ' They 
flattered him,' in running then to him, but only as a Redeemer. The Holy 
Ghost is exactly punctual in expressing the bottom differences of their 
flattery. A man is like to die : he sends to the physician, but as a physi- 
cian only ; he never did, nor doth now, regard the friendship of the man. 
Pharaoh sends in all haste (it is said) for Moses and Aaron, Exod. x. 16, 
when he never cared more to have seen them : so ver. 28, ' See my face 
no more.' But yet in his distress he says unto them, 'I have sinned; for- 
give, and entreat the Lord your God to take away this death onl,-.' What 
need was there for him to put in this exclusive, this death only ' He was 
an ignorant heathen, and so speaks out his heart plainly. He knew not 
how to flatter this God ; for God was a strange God, whom he professed 
not ; he still styles him your God. He speaks as indeed it was, he pro- 
fesseth to care for God no further. But those very men (of whom the 
psalmist here speaks) that were brought out of Egypt from under this 
Pharaoh, professed God to be their God, and to have been their redeemer 
out of Egypt. And they, in their speeches, when they return to God, 
carry it otherwise, yet their hearts at the bottom were the very same ; and 
therefore of them it is said, they flattered him with their tougues. And 
thus men professing Christ in the church do not say unto God, when they 


pray to him, or unto men when in distress of conscience, sickness, &c, 
Take away this hell only. They do not say it ; but God, that knows the 
mind of their spirit in them, knows it is all, and the whole they would 
have with him ; yet they give good words, conceal this to be all, or tbe 
main, of their intentions ; yea, themselves, out of self- flatten-, discern it 
not. But yet still they think and mean the very same, though Pharaoh 
only spake it out. And therefore they are said to flatter him. But what 
doth a godly man's heart say in his distress ? He runs to God indeed as 
a redeemer; but coming to him, he finds, Est aliquid in Christo formosim 
salvatore. ' The Lord is my portion,' says the soul, Lam. iii. 24. And 
it was spoken as in deep distress, as every soul was in, as is apparent from 
the chapter. What saith David, from the very bottom of his heart, in his 
sickness ? Not, Take away this death only. No ; but David being sick, 
first comforts himself with this promise, Ps. xli. 3, ' The Lord will streng- 
then him upon his bed of languishing, and make his bed in his sickness ; ' 
and then adds, ver. 4, ' I said, Lord, be merciful to me, and heal my 
soul ;' that is, Destroy my lusts, which arc the diseases of my soul, Lord ; 
and heal my soul, and renew life and communion with thee, which is the 
health and strength of my soul. Do not take this sickness and death only 
away ; but this sin away, that hath dishonoured thee, hath separated be- 
tween me and thee : ' Heal my soul, for I have sinned against thee.' 

I need not so punctually pursue the rest of these instances of their flattery, 
that follow in the 78th Psalm. I choose rather to single forth some of the 
eminent acts contrary to the fore-mentioned particulars, in which I shewed 
reconciliation to God to consist ; and I must instance but in a few of them, 
and in them make forth the difference between flattery and true friendship 
and good will. 

1. The first is that of seeking God (which I have been large upon before), 
and even that also is mentioned in the psalmist : Ps. lxxviii. 34, ' When 
he slew them, then they sought him, and inquired early after God,' that is, 
diligently ; as what a man riseth betimes to do, he may be said to do with 
earnestness and diligence. ' They sought him,' but still as a redeemer 
only, as was observed. Now, let us bring it to the business of reconcilia- 
tion, which is the point in hand, and the difference will appear, what seek- 
ing of God is only out of flattery, what also out of friendship. 

First, then, There are two things in reconciliation which the gospel pro- 
pounds, Luke ii. 14, peace and good will. First, peace, quiet of conscience 
in regard of the pardon of sin. Secondly, God's favour and acceptation, so 
that God receives us, loves and delights in us. Now, to seek peace only, 
and to aim at peace alone in seeking God, may be in a flatterer, as in those 
(Ps. lxxviii. 34) who sought him whilst he was a-slaying them ; who were 
earnest that God would be pacified towards them ; but that was all. Ene- 
mies to a prince may earnestly seek peace, and their pardon, who yet care 
not whether ever they see the king's face any more, and whether they live 
in his presence and serve him, and attend him all their days. But now 
one that hath good will to God in him, though he will seek peace also, yet 
that alone doth not content him ; for he seeks as a favourite seeks to his 
prince, as a lover or mover to one he is in love withal, whom nothing 
but love and good will again will satisfy: Jer. ii. 2, 'I remember,' sa}-s 
God, ' the kindness of tby youth, the love of thy espousals, when thou 
wentest after me in the wilderness.' They went after him, and wooed 
him, as a fond lover doth. So doth he tbat seeks aright : he seeks to God 
lor favour, as a friend doth to a friend, to be answered with love, and to 

Chap. IV.J in our salvation. 135 

live in hig sight ami presence for ever. To such a one therefore, who thus 
seeks God, and hath such an aim in seeking him, if half the news were 
brought to him, that God would pardon him indeed, and not throw him 
into hell, but let him enjoy the world, but yet that he can never love or 
delight in him again, this would grieve him more than the other would re- 
joice him. That which Absalom but feigned, they can do and say in truth, 
2 Sam. xiv. 32, ' Let God kill me, rather than not suffer me to see his face,' 
for it is his face they seek. And so the generation of them who seek the 
Lord is distinguished, Ps. xxiv. 6. 

Secondly, It will appear whether good will be in your seeking God, from 
the issue and event of it, for either God withholdeth his face from a man 
in seeking him, and seemeth to reject his suit, keeping him so in suspense, 
as he knows not whether he will save him or no ; or he gives him some 
evidence and assurance of it. One of these two cases will fall out, and in 
either of them will pure good will to God discover itself, when a man seeks 

First, If God withholds himeelf and his face from a sincere soul, yet still 
that soul is enabled to cast himself upon him and his free grace, and to 
refer himself and his case to his mere good will and good pleasure. He 
can still put himself into his hands, as David did : 2 Sam. xv. 26, ' Here 
I am ; if he hath not pleasure in me, let him do what seemeth good in his 
eyes.' Thus Job also did : Job xiii. 15, ' If he kill me, yet will I trust in 
him.' If he dies, he resolves to die seeking at his feet. And it is the 
good will he beareth unto God which causeth him to do thus, because he 
cannot leave God. But one whose heart is not right with God in seeking 
him, when he hath sought a while, and seeking amiss, obtains not, he leaves 
off his suit, and withdraws himself, and will not trust his soul with him ; 
this seems express by comparing that speech of the apostle, Heb. x., with 
what you find in Habakkuk, whence it is cited. The words of Paul are, 
Heb. x. 36-39, ' For ye have need of patience, that after ye have done the 
will of God, ye might receive the promise. For yet a little while, and he 
that shall come will come, and will not tarry. Now the just shall live by 
faith : but if any man draw back, my soul shall have no pleasure in him. 
But we are not of them who draw back unto perdition ; but of them that 
believe to the saving of the soul.' Patience in waiting and believing is 
made the character of a true believer, and withdrawing is the character of 
impatience in one whose heart is not upright within him : Hab. ii. 3, 4, 

• For the vision is yet for an appointed time, but at the end it shall speak, 
and not lie : though it tarry, wait for it ; because it will surely come, it 
will not tarry. Behold, his soul which is lifted up is not upright in him : 
but the just shall live by his faith.' 

Secondly, One that seeks out of good will, when he obtaineth any glimpse 
of God's favour, he rejoiceth in it, and in God, more than in life and the 
hope of heaven, Rom. v. 2 and 11 verses compared. The apostle, you may 
perceive, proceeds by way of gradation in the effects of faith in a good and 
sound heart. He hath first peace, ver. 1 ; then, 2dly, he rejoiceth in hope 
of glory, ver. 2 ; then, 3dly, not only so, but (ver. 3) ' we glory ' (says he) 

• in tribulation,' and not only so, but (says he, ver. 11) ' we joy in God,' 
even in God himself. To rejoice in hope of glory, speaks something of 
good will, as hope imports. But it is a strain yet purer and higher to rejoice 
in God himself. And therefore if the soul hath not outward things, yet 
God is enough ; and if he hath them, he rejoiceth more in them as they are 
love-tokens of his God, than in the things themselves. And he is more 


fearful to displease him out of fear of his goodness, Hos. iii. 5. When God 
speaks peace he returns no more to folly, Ps. lxxxv. 8. It works more 
strength, hatred, and loathing of sin. But the insincere soul, if he con- 
ceives any hope (as often they do feed themselves with ungrounded hopes 
aud shadows of assurances), grows the more securely presumptuous, turns 
that grace into wantonness, as self-love is apt to do ; Jer. iii. 4, 5, ' Thou 
callest me Father, and yet doest as evil as thou couldst.' But when God 
truly works, he says in opposition to that former, ' Thou shalt call me 
Father, and shalt not turn away from me.' Even as Absalom sought to 
be in favour with his father, but rebelled the more, so it proves in the 
issue with a soul insincere ; for though the assurance of God's love is the 
surest motive to work upon a principle of love and pure good will unto God 
in the heart — • the love of Christ constrains me,' saith the apostle — yet 
when there is nothing but self-love in the heart, it abuseth that grace 
it seeks for, and thinketh it hath attained, for it hath not ingenuity in it 
to God. 

2. The second particular I would instance is, confession of sin with 
mourning, which I instanced in, as one eminent ingredient into reconcilia- 
tion with God. This flatterers also may seem seriously to do. So Ahab 
mourned and went softly ; and (Isa. lviii. 5) they are said to ' hang down 
their heads like bulrushes.' But if the mourning be out of goodwill, then, 

First, A man's heart will not only mourn for sin, as having brought misery 
upon him, or as that which hath cast him out from God, which whilst a 
man doth, he indeed lamenteth but himself; as a traitor at the gallows 
lamenteth that he should come to such a miserable end, and deserve such 
a death ; as Cain mourned when he cried out, ' My punishment is greater 
than I can bear.' It was the punishment pinched him. Thus to mourn 
for sin in relation to misery, though we do it thus before God, is not mourn- 
ing but howling, Hos. vii. 14, or, as David terms it, roaring, Ps. xxxii. 3. 
But in true mourning, which comes out of goodwill, they are said (Zech. 
xii. 10) to ' mourn for him whom they had pierced, as a mother for her only 
son.' In which two things are observable for our purpose (which is to dis- 
tinguish mourning), first, that they are said to mourn, not so much for sin, 
much less their misery, as for Mm, that is, for sin in relation to him, as it 
is an injury, provoking, wronging, and piercing him. As David in confes- 
sion, Ps. li., sets this accent upon his sinning, in saying, • Against thee, 
against thee have I sinned.' In the verse afore he says, his sins were ever 
before him, as that which is a man's greatest and heaviest affliction useth 
to be. David had other things enough to have had afore him, as the 
shame, &c. But these things, though when sin fell light, they were heavy, 
yet now are vanished and disappear ; and the sin, the sin is ever afore him. 
And what was it in the sin ? Even this, that against God he had sinned. 
Wherein I observe, 1. That he considers it not only as done in God's sight, 
in his presence, and afore him only, and he looking on, though he aggra- 
vates it by that ; but chiefly, that the sin was committed against him as the 
object. And, 2dly, he repeats that twice, as in sorrow we use to do what 
most deeply affects us ; as David on another occasion cried out, ' Absa- 
lom, my son, my son ;' so here he says twice, ' Against thee, against thee,' 
&c. And, 3dly, as not content with this, he adds only (' against thee only'), 
as the only consideration that at present moved him, though he had sinned 
against Bathsheba and Uriah too, and all the people of God. And hence, 
because God is the object, the terminus of such sorrow, it hath therefore its 
denomination from God, and is called ' sorrow according to God,' 2 Cor. 

Chap. IV.] in our salvation. ];57 

vii. 9, 10, xara &sov Kuxrj, as acts are denominated from their tendency. 

Second!;/. Tho comparison the prophet useth, Zech. xii. 10, argues it 
sprang from pure good will. For his words are, ' as a mother mourneth for 
her only son.' What else moveth a mother to mourn for the loss of a son, 
especially of an infant, hut goodwill to it ? You know how David took on 
for his son Absalom. Children are in dependence upon their parents, and 
may mourn out of self-love, because when they are gone, they are left 
orphans and helpless. If therefore he had instanced in the mourning of a 
child, self-love might at least have been supposed the principal motive ; but 
when he says, ' as a mother for her child,' he can mean nothing more than 
that out of love they do it. It is one thing to come and mourn for sin 
before God, and bemoan ourselves to him, and another to mourn for him, 
and for sin, as done against him. A flatterer may do the one,' but an inge- 
nious friend only the latter: Ezek. vi. 9, 'They that escape of you shall 
remember me among the nations whither they shall be carried captives, 
because I am broken with their whorish heart, which hath departed from 
me, and with their eyes, which go a whoring after their idols : and they 
shall loathe themselves for the evils which they have committed in all their 
abominations.' This also is spoken of the true and kindly sorrow of heart 
wherewith the godly come unto God. 

Now as afore you heard, they mourned for him : so here, says God, 
' they shall remember me.' And upon the thought of him, whom they have 
so sinned against, shall loathe themselves. Now that which must cause 
self to hate itself, must be pure good will to God above a man's self. To 
remember God is to think of him with the deepest atlection of love, as the 
words of Christ in the institution of the sacrament import, ' Do this in 
remembrance of me.' 

3. What is it concerning God in sin that makes them loathe themselves'? 
Even this, that it hath broken God's heart. The godly look upon sin as 
God doth, see that to be the evil in sin which God doth ; yea, they look 

'upon it also with God's heart, and what affects God in it affects them. It 
is said (Num. xi. 10) God was angry, and Moses was displeased also. Yea, 
they mourn for it, because it affects God's heart, as true friends, that have 
but one heart and one soul : ' Thy friend ' (Deut. xiii. 6) ' that is as thine 
own soul.' So God and the saints have as it were one heart, which con- 
sists in pure good will. And therefore God, that knows the temper of true 
hearts to him, propounds this as the object of their sorrow, that the 
thought that his heart was broken, was the chief thing that breaks theh*s. 
And this motive no principle in man but love can apprehend and take in. 
A sincere soul considers this as the eminent evil in his sinning, that God's 
heart is broken with the unkindness of it, as a husband for the departure 
of a wife whorishly from him (to which that place alludes), and so mourn 
for it. 

4. The last words (in Ezek. vi. 9) do import some such thing, for they 
run thus : ' That they should loathe themselves for the evils committed in 
their abominations.' Not for their abominations simply, in the grossness 
of them, for wicked men mourn for their abominations when outwardly 
gross. But this expression imports there were certain special evils in their 
abominations (the greatest of the evils therein) which tbey spied out to 
mourn for, as their unkindness to God, falseness in them to God, &c. 

Thirdly, The sincerity of this mourning will appear in the issue and 
event, in the cases fore-mentioned. For, 


1 . If God forbear to speak peace and pardon to hint, and rather seems 
to be an enemy, and to fight against him (Isa. lxiii. 10), in that case he 
joins with God in self-revenge. Thus, 2 Cor. vii. 11, ' Godly sorrow ' 
(among other things) « worketh revenge ' on one's self (as they had done 
on a church member, of which it is principally spoken), so as he hates and 
loathes himself, and turns enemy against himself: Ezek. xxxvi. 31, ' Judgeth 
himself worthy to be destroyed.' So the old translation renders it. He 
finds it in his heart now that at the latter day his heart would of itself step 
out the first, before ever it were accused, and say, Here am I, that have 
deserved thy utmost destruction. And if he thought he should be destroyed, 
he finds some little relief in this, that God is avenged on one of his 

2. If he hath assurance that God will pardon him, then the more assur- 
ance or hopes (that rise to any greatness) he hath of pardon, the more he 
mourneth. Assurance broacheth godly sorrow, sets it a-working, and giveth 
vent to it. Ezek. xvi. 61, ' Thou shalt remember thy evil ways, and thy 
doings, which were not good.' And remembering them, ver. 63, • shalt 
be confounded and never open thy mouth any more, because of thy shame, 
when I am pacified towards thee for all that thou hast done.' Then cometh 
in the greatest confusion, shame and grief overcoming the heart most, when 
God is pacified. God overcomes when he pardons as well as when he 
judgeth, and hath a greater victory over the soul whom he pardons than 
over the damned in hell. And there is in such a soul as true a confusion 
of face, though of another kind, that so no flesh may glory in his presence. 
But the more hope an insincere soul, who seeks out of self-love, and 
mourns only out of self-love, hath, the less he mourns ; like a traitor, that 
when he hath got what he would have, and is in hope to obtain his pardon, 
his eyes are dry. 

Fourthly ; There must be good will in acts of obedience also, and in choos- 
ing the things that please God. You know what Christ says, John xv. 14, 
1 If you be my friends, do what I command you.' Now if there be good- 
will in the heart it will appear. A man may discover it one time or other 
by the dispositions of his heart, either, 1. Sometimes before the obedience 
performed. 2. In the performance. 3. After the performance, or the doing 
anything for God. 

1. Before the performance by two things. 

(1.) Ii asmum as the chiefest aim of his heart in it will be to shew forth 
and express his good will to God. As he does it as a friend, by way of 
requital to a friend, whose utmost end is to shew his love to the party, so 
the chiefest thing he desires is, that God would but accept it for such, and 
take it in good part, and take notice of his love in it ; which love of his is 
more than the thing, though he grieves it should be so little. And there- 
fore a godly man's obedience is termed thankfulness. When Mary came 
and bestowed that cost upon Christ, and washed his feet with tears, her 
utmost end was but to shew her love, which therefore Christ took notice of, 
and speaks of, and accepts of above all else : ' She loved much, because 
much is forgiven her,' says Christ ; as if he had said, All this is but to 
testify her love and godly sorrow, which I take notice of, and will therefore 
have recorded to the end of the world. Therefore it is called, Heb. vi. 10, 
' The labour of love.' And hence oftentimes (perhaps not always) the 
greatest and strongest motives that can be used before to persuade and 
prevail with the heart to obedience, is taken from love's topics, from God's 
love, as appear&th by Christ's dealing with Peter, whom when he would 

Chap. IV. J in our salvation. 139 

effectually persuade to feed his church, he telleth him not of livings and 
preferments by it, nor of the woe if he preached not, but he useth a motive 
of another kind, stronger than all these.' ' Peter, Lovest thou me ?' I am 
persuaded it broke Peter's heart to hear Christ thus questioning with him, 
and to think that he had given him occasion, by his denial, to make a 
question of it. He modestly replies, ' Lord ' (saith he), ' thou knowest 
that,' though I have dealt unthankfully and falsely with thee, that yet ' I 
love thee,' and am willing to do anything for thee. Whereas another per- 
forms his duty, but at best as a servant doth a business for a master, and 
so he may do it even because he is commanded ; but yet his utmost aim is 
not as a friend to shew his love. But what says Christ, ' If ye do what- 
ever I command you,' that is, out of love, then ' henceforth I shall call you 
friends, not servants,' John xv. 15. Or else the man doth his duty as a 
bribe to a judge to buy oil' his punishment : Micah vi. 6, ' Wherewithal shall 
I appear before the Lord ?' What shall I give him ? His manner of 
speaking bewrays he did it to bribe the Lord, to get his pardon. An enemy, 
being in an enemy's lurch, may do as much for his enemy, and for one he 
regardeth not. 

(2.) Secondly, The good will that is in the heart will appear before the per- 
formance of any divine service, in a readiness to do it. As if a man truly 
loves a friend, his love to him is a preparation in his heart, and makes it ready 
to do anything before he asketh it. And therefore (1 Peter v. 2) they are 
said to do what they do (if they do it as they ought) ' out of a ready mind.' 
And though they cannot do always what they would, as Paul complaineth, 
Rom. vii., yet (soys he) at the 18th verse, ' To will is present with me.' 
And therefore it comes off willingly, frankly, and freely, 1 Chron. xxix. 14. ; 
whereas another, though he goes about it, yet it is out of constraint, as 
Peter speaks, 1 Peter v. 2. And that is not only when worldly and by-ends 
move a man, but when conscience also pricks a man on to it by legal motives 
only. And when the heart is put upon it, it is sorry, and wincheth, it is 
sorry that it is propounded so, as when it is propounded and urged by 
motives drawn from God ; that of all love between him and us we would 
do such a duty, as ever we would do him a kindness, or shew our love 
to him ; as ever we have received mercy from him, or look for communion 
with him as a friend, we should obey him in this or that particular; yet 
the heart stirs not for all these, comes not off, until self-respects strike 
in. God in this case thinks himself denied. 

2. Good will appeareth in the doing of the service to God, 1 John v. 3. 
This is the effect of love to God, that his commandments are not grievous, 
and a man goes about his work as about a friend's business, as Jacob went 
about Laban's business ; when love to Rachel set him on work, it was not 
grievous to him ; he thought not the time long because he loved her. So anything 
we do for God, love sweeteneth to us, 1 Chron. xxix. David offered, and he 
offered willingly, and rejoiced with great joy in the doing of it : ver. 14, ' And 
who am I,' says he, ' that I should do it ?' He thought it a mercy God 
would use him, and accept it. 

3. It will appear after the performance by two dispositions. First, thou 
wilt think everything too little that thou dost, as when a friend sends pre- 
sents to one who is a friend indeed, still he thinks that they are not 
good enough, and wisheth they were better for his sake. There are two 
companies of men who seem to have done much for Christ, who shall appear 
before him at the latter day : the one thought they had done so much, that 
they speak of it themselves, ' Have we not prophesied,' 4c. ; but the other, 


that had done much more, and out of love to him, were silent, and not only 
so, but when Christ took notice of their love they were modest, wondered at 
it, were ashamed, as it were, that such poor services should be spoken of, 
as not worth the owning. And the reason is, because he that hath good 
will in his heart to God, still his heart exceeds his actions ; he doth them 
out of the abundance of his heart, as Christ speaks. As the woman that 
gave her mite emptied her purse, but not her heart, being (as it is likely) 
sorry she had no more to give. And such a one also, doing it out of love, 
and that of answering and requiting an infinite love, measuring what is 
done by both, finds it infinitely too little ; not big enough to express his 
own love, but much less to answer God's ; and so he is sorry and ashamed 
it is no better ; whereas, one that doth not do things out of good will, thinks 
everything enough that he thinks will but save him. His heart is less than 
his actions, and though by reason of convictions of what he ought to do, he 
cannot think it too much, knowing it to be his duty, yet when he doth it, and 
afterward, his heart thinks it much, and grudgeth it. 

Fifthj; Lastly, In case of trial, when in temptation poor souls think all they 
have done is in vain, this goodwill will appear, in that they repent not of 
what they have done ; 2 Cor. vii. 9, 10, it is therefore called ' repentance 
never to be repented of.' There can no case befall them, wherein they do 
repent, or are sorry for what they have done ; but still wish it had been 
much better for God's sake. If he hath had any glory by it, and if they 
should be damned, and not rewarded, they are contented to give him so 
much in. Whereas the other, as suitors when they are out of hope, send 
for all their tokens again, though they pretended much love ; so they did in 
the prophet : ' It is in vain,' say they, ' to serve God ; and wherefore have 
we fasted, and thou seest it not ?' 


The application or uses of the foregoing doctrine. 

I shall now shut up this discourse with what is the apostle's chief scope 
in the text, 2 Cor. v. 18—20, viz., an use of exhortation, to ' beseech men 
to be reconciled to God ;' because reconciliation imports an having been 
formerly enemies ; and in that case, it is (as I shewed), necessary for men 
to apprehend themselves in a state of enmity with God, ere they will ever 
seek unto God for peace and reconciliation, or listen to the true terms of it. 

1. I shall therefore, in the first place, earnestly beseech all men to con- 
sider whether yet such a work of reconciliation be wrought in them, yea 
or no ? And this is a question the best and greatest man Living may, with- 
out offence, be entreated to ask his own heart ; and it concerns every man 
that will have reconciliation with God to do it. To this end I beseech you 
to consider that we were once enemies, that is, in a state of enmity, and it 
is not Christ's having died that altereth that state. You see that the text 
supposeth God's having been in Christ reconciling the world, when yet the 
world remaineth unreconciled to God ; for upon that supposition he foundeth 
this exhortation. It is true, Christ died for us, when we were enemies, and 
therein his love was shewn ; Rom. v. 8, ' God commendeth his love to us, 
that while we were yet sinners' (and enemies, as it follows), ' Christ died 
for us.' Yet withal it is as true that we remain notwithstanding in that 
state, until a work of reconciliation to God is wrought in us, through 
Christ's death : Col. i. 22, ' And you that were sometime enemies, yet now 

Chap. Y. in our salvation. 141 

hath he reconciled.' Nothing is more sure than that we were all once 
such; and it were well if we had good reasons to he as sure that now we 
arc not. And the apostle everywhere stands upon the important now oi 
every man's condition, as putting every man upon the examining his pre- 
sent condition. 

2. And, secondly, consider, that this enmity is seated in your minds and 
natures. You are ' enemies in your minds,' Rom. v. 8. Whence there- 
fore it must be acknowledged that there must needs be some great alteration 
wrought in your minds, if God and you be friends. And thence consider 
that therefore it is not education, or outward privileges, or deportment in 
the church, that either doth alter, or argues your condition altered. As 
take a wolf, a cub, that is newly fallen from the dam, which is, as we know, 
in its nature an enemy to a lamb, though you put it into a lamb's skin, and 
bring it up with the sheep in the same fold, and feed it with the same food, 
yet still it will remain a wolf, and an enemy to a lamb: — such is our wofnl 
case, being born in our natures enemies to God, though immediately when 
we fell from the womb, we had a Christian's ear-mark given us, were trained 
up in a Christian profession, and have been ever since fed with the same 
word, etc., yet we are enemies still, if there be no more alteration in us. 
It was the case of Simon Magus, Acts viii. 23, ' I perceive thou art still in 
the gall o** bitterness.' And ver. 21, ' Thou hast neither lot nor part in this 
matter,' though he had been baptized, etc. And though an innocent and 
harmless carriage in the world be added to this, yet this will not argue 
your estates to be altered, for a wolf may be so tamed, that it shall not do 
much hurt ; for every beast hath and may be tamed, as James saith, James 
iii. 7, ' Every kind of beasts and of birds, and of serpents, and things in 
the sea, is tamed, and hath been tamed of mankind.' And if mankind can 
tame beasts, their inward natural disposition remaining, but restrained, 
God can do the like, and much more, to the hearts and spirits of men, 
without changing of them. Thou mayest be a tame wolf, be chained up 
from ranging and devouring, and yet still remain an enemy. For re- 
member that this enmity is seated in thy mind and nature. That your 
hearts are not filled with so much gall, as to carry you on to evil works, 
doth not argue you friends and reconciled, if withal they be not seasoned 
with so much good will to God, as to make you ' zealous of good works,' 
Titus ii. 14. Mere neuters (if you could be such) are no friends. God 
accounts them enemies ; Mat. xxi. 30. ' He that is not with me is against 
me,' says Christ, our supreme judge. 

3. Neither, thirdly, is it a forward profession of what is outwardly good, 
added to your inward carriage, which will argue you to be friends ; for 
flatterers may abound in outward kindnesses, as well as friends, Isa. lviii. 2. 
You see a company there to mention kindnesses to God, whom God regards 
not. For it is with God herein as with great men, who have many flat- 
terers, but few friends, as Solomon expresseth it, Prov. xix. 6, ' Many 
entreat the favour of the prince,' etc., because of gifts, ' and will be Mends' 
(that is, seem to be), ' to him that giveth gifts.' And thus also God, having 
great gifts in his hand to give away, heaven, <tc, and the keys of death and 
hell at his girdle ; he hath many who do seek and earnestly entreat his 
favour, out of such respects and ends ; and apprehensions strongly set on 
upon their hearts, who yet do but flatter him. Therefore trust to none of 
these, but love to have such a work of true reconciliation wrought in you 
as hath been spoken of. Which, if there be, the before mentioned disposi- 
tions of pure good will will be sooner or later bubbling up in your hearts. 


In brief, therefore, take the help and benefit of all those particulars to 
examine your estates by, and try whether such a work hath been wrought 
in you. 

(1.) Consider, whether thou, having first apprehended thy enmity against 
God, thou wert therewithal brought to know God anew, and his Son ; and 
knowing him, didst fall in love with him (and all that ever yet have known 
him, have loved him) not with such a love only as we bear to some hero, 
that doth great and noble things ; or to our dead founders, whom we speak 
well of, and commend their doings, although we never knew them but by 
tradition (and such at best is the common love to God and Christ which 
men bear to them) ; but so to know and love him, as to be enamoured 
with him, as one in love useth to be with the person he sets his affections 
on. Doth thy heart burn after him, when thou seest a glimpse of him but 
passing by thee ? Or, to use the phrase in Job, ' Art acquainted with him?' 
Job xxii. 21. Hath he imparted any secrets to thee, as to his friends he 
doth? John xv. 15. Hath he shewed and manifested himself to thee, 
John xiv. 20, if not in assurance of his love to thee, yet in the goodness 
that is in himself ? Though thou hast seen him but as through the lattice (as 
the church did, Cant, v.), yet canst thou never be at quiet till thou seest 
him again ? Hath thy heart been divorced from all other lovers upon 
acquaintance with him ? Hast thou chosen him, and dost thou seek him 
for ever ? And for what hast thou chosen him, and why dost thou seek 
him ? Good will looks especially at the person, not the fortunes (as you 
call them) ; ' I seek not yours, but you,' is the language of a friend. Alex- 
ander had two friends : the one he called <&//.& / 3aff//.su;, a lover of the king ; 
the other, ^iKa'/.i^ayb^g, a lover of Alexander, as being a lover of his per- 
son and dispositions. So many profess to love Christ, yet do it only as he 
is a saviour, and their judge, and king of heaven aiid hell. They love him 
not as Christ, not for that which God chiefly loves him for, namely, because 
he is his natural Son, his image, the express image of his person. Nor do 
they love him as Christ, that is, as anointed with the Spirit, and all the 
graces thereof, full of grace and truth above measure. For which yet the 
virgins are said to love him : Cant. i. 8, ' Because of the savour of thy oint- 
ments, they love thee ;' and that, as virgins, with a pure and chaste affection 
to himself, with a savour of his graces, sweetness, and perfumes thereof. 
Is it the holiness, the amiableness, the love, the goodness, that is in him, 
which draws thy heart unto him ? "What says Paul ? Phil. iii. 7-9, • But 
what things were gain to me, those I counted loss for Christ. Yea doubt- 
less, and I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of 
Christ Jesus my Lord : for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and 
do count them but dung, that I may win Christ, and be found in him, not 
having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is 
through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith.' 
Observe it, he had suffered the loss of all for the excellency of the know- 
ledge of Christ Jesus his Lord ; and counted them dross in comparison of 
the knowledge of him. And his great desire was, that he might win Christ 
and be found in him, his person first ; and then to be found in him, not 
having his own righteousness. 

(2.) Again ; Of all the things which he hath to bestow, or that is in him, 
what is the thing thou especially seekest for, and shalt never rest satisfied 
or contented without it ? Is it his love, his favour, to have his heart 
towards thee, his delight set upon thee, to enjoy his presence, his face, to 
live with him for ever ? And desirest thou to be happy thyself, that he 

Chap. V.] in our salvation. L48 

may greatly delight in thy beauty ; and that thereby thou mightest be suited 
to him, and so mightest come to delight in him ; and this in such a man- 
ner as nothing else will satisfy thee, neither pardon, nor Christ's death, 
with addition of all the world, if it could be separated from the favour of 
God, would not content thee ? 

(3.) Again ; Dost thou choose the things that please him ? And what 
pleaseth him most, dost thou choose most ? As a man useth to do his 
friend, whom he affects to please. As because thou hearest faith pleaseth 
him, Heb. xi., because a broken heart pleaseth him, Ps. li., glorifying him 
more than thousands of rams, Ps. 1., because private prayer pleaseth him 
(as himself declared, ' Let me hear thy voice ; it is pleasant,' Cant. ii. 14). 
Because thanksgiving pleaseth him more than thousands of rams, Ps. 
lxix. 31. Do all these things therefore delight thy soul ? Because the Sab- 
bath is his delight, and honourable to him, that is, for his honour, is it 
therefore thy delight, and dost thou call it honourable? Isa. lviii. 13, 14. 
Because the saints please him, and are his delight, are they therefore thine ? 
Ps. xvi. 2. In a word, take all ordinances, dost thou use them as back- 
doors to let Christ thy private friend in, to the end to speak with him, and 
to enjoy communion with him ? Doth thy heart upon that account value 
the word thou readest or hearest, as a private letter sent from a dearest 
friend ? Dost thou think of going to the sacrament, as of going to a 
friend's house to supper? Rev. hi. 20. In like manner, dost thou regard 
private prayer as an opportunity of speaking privately and alone with a 
friend in secret ? 

(4.) And again, in thy doing what pleaseth him, what is it setteth thee 
in thy constant course a-work ? Is it his love that sets thee a-work, and 
' constrains thee?' 2 Cor. v. 14. Or if not the sense of that, yet is it a 
desire to please him ? And when thou dost it for him, dost go about it as 
about a friend's business, not coldly, but so as to do it to purpose with all 
thy might, serving him with all thy strength ? Grudgest thou if thy lusts 
or corrupt affections do get any of thy spirits, so that they are not spent 
for him, and upon him ? Thinkest thou all this to be no trouble to thee ? 
Art glad when thou canst do him a kindness, that is, anything which he 
may be pleased to accept ? Thinkest thou that day best spent wherein 
thou canst do him a service ? Yea, most of all, thankest him that thou 
hast a heart to do it ? as David did, 1 Chron. xxix. 14. And when thou 
hast done, thou yet still fallest down as an ' unprofitable servant' and un- 
useful friend. Thinkest thou that it is all too litlle, and confessest still, 
this and that is not good enough, so as thou couldst find in thy heart to 
do over all again ? Wast never yet (and that out of love, not conviction 
only) satisfied with the best prayer that ever thou madest ? Art ashamed of 
the performance in any kind ? Yet because it is thy best he hath enabled 
thee to do, thou desirest him to take it in good part ; but not at, or in thine 
own name, because of thine unworthiness, but for his Son's, thy Christ's 
sake. Dost thou not find that thou hatest also, where he hateth ? whether 
it be sinners, or persons as clothed with sins. Dost thou hate those that 
hate God ? Ps. exxxix. 21, 22, ' Do not I hate them, Lord, that hate thee ? 
And am I not grieved with those that rise up against thee ? I hate them 
with perfect hatred. I count them mine enemies.' And as for sins, canst 
thou say (as David), ' I hate every false way' ? And that (as he says there) 
out of prizing ' all God's precepts in all things to be right,' Ps. cxix. 
127, 128. And when it falls out that thou dost sin against him that is so 
good, canst thou yet in truth say, ' I do what I hate' ? Rom. vii. And 


then -what is it in sin thou hatest most ? Is it because thou feelest thy 
heart turned (as it were) within thee ? saying, as 2 Sam. xvi. 17, ' Is this 
thy kindness to thy friend ?' Shall I do my God, my friend, this wrong ? 
Shall or should I so evilly or unthankfully requite God ? Or dost thou 
hate sin, because it breaks communion betwixt God and thee ? And when 
thou hast thus sinned, art thou never quiet till thou hast returned, and God 
and thou art friends again ? And returuest thou again to him, not as healed* 
b/ conscience into his presence ; and so stayest not till an arrest come 
forth for thee, or be served upon thee, and until thou art fetched in by ter- 
rors or afflictions only (though sometimes these are needful) but returnest 
thou out of a longing and Lingering after him ; as one without whom thou 
canst no longer Live, no, not in this world, where tbou hast so many things 
to comfort thee ? From whom to be estranged, is it bitter as death to 
thee '? So that during all that space of distance from him, when thou but 
hearest or thinkest of him, thy heart glows within thee, burns after him, 
and in the end thou resolvedly comest to say, I can no longer bear this 
life, I must return to him again whom my soul loves, for then ' it was bet- 
ter with me than now,' Hos. ii. 7. I never enjoyed good hour since I 
wickedly and foolishly forsook him. And then when thou comest again 
into his presence, what is it broacheth thy heart, and makes it gush ? Is 
it thy unkindness to him ? Doth that dissolve and melt thy heart, con- 
found and overcome thee, stop thy mouth, so at first thou canst do nothing 
but sit in silence with thy mouth in the dust, laying that most to heart 
which God lays most to heart ? ' If it had been an enemy he could have 
bome it.' But that thou, his friend, xal au nv.wi, dost it, is intolerable. 
Thou who wast once a perfect and utter enemy unto him as ever was, and 
yet seeing the misery and danger of that condition, and having heard of 
his loving-kindness, grace, and mercy, wast sweetly drawn in, won, and 
allured, by himself too, to seek his favour and friendship more than life. 
And he as graciously also condescended to entertain a treaty with thee 
about it ; gave thee many hopes and evidences of his favour, which thou 
hast prized more than life ; and thou wast even then, when this unhappy 
lust betrayed thee, and carried thee captive, upon the very point of obtain- 
ing the assurance of his love from him. Or suppose (I speak to one who 
hath obtained assurance from him) that thou wentest, as Saul, seeking after 
asses, a world of vanities, and yet even then hast found thyself in the 
ambushment of an infinite and everlasting love, surrounding thee without 
the possibility of escape from it. That thou who hast received all this, 
should use God thus, what base ingratitude is it ! Well, and yet further, 
when thou hast come unto him again and again (for this is not the first or 
second time that thou didst serve him so), and when thou didst expect 
nothing but frowns, if not rejection by him, lo, he hath fallen upon thy 
neck ere thou hast spoke out thy requests to him with trembling heart and 
lips ; and lo, he fell upon thy neck and kissed thee, and wept love, eternal 
love, and the blood of his dearest love, into thy bosom, faster than thou 
couldst pour tears into his. And instantly he bid fetch the best robe in 
all his wardrobe, that never yet was put upon angels' backs, woven by his 
Son, and appointed by himself, and told thee he had reserved it by him for 
thee from everlasting, and that all were friends again, and it would be so 
for ever. And he left only this kind sting behind, that he told thee that 
thou wouldst yet sin again as thou hadst done before ; and so thou hast. 
And hath not, doth not this yet more melt thee, and cause the tide of godly 
* Qu. 'hauled'? — En. 


sorrow to swell yet higher, as it did in Peter ? A good look of Christ made 
him ' go out, and weep bitterly.' And when God hath used theo thus 
kindly, only bid thee take heed of returning to folly any more, didst thou, 
after that, fear his goodness more than ever thou didst his anger ? Weepest 
thou if others do see thee, or thou scest others sin ? Do, or have ' rivers of 
tears fallen down thino eyes, because men keep not his law ?' as David 
speaks, Ps. cxix. Hut how remote are such dispositions as these from the 
hearts of the most of men, even of those who yet profess themselves as 
great and good friends to God as any ? And if for want of such or like 
dispositions to these, so many will be found enemies (for Christ hath said 
it, ' He that is not with me is against me'), where shall you that are opposcrs 
of God and goodness, and mockers of holiness ; you that are secret 
maintainers and flatterers of bosom-sins, of uncleanness and worldliness 
in your own hearts, strangers from God and the life of God ; not sub- 
ject to the law of God, and to the multitude of duties he requireth ; not 
calling upon God (as the psalmist speaks), where will you appear ? I have 
ransacked your hearts ; let me now prosecute my begun exhortation 
afresh. I beseech, therefore, all those that shall have the least beam of 
light darted into their hearts by these considerations, to consider with 
themselves what to do. 

For consider how nearly it concerns you to be reconciled to God. 
For know that 'he is angry with you every day,' Ps. vii. 11, though he 
says nothing. And if thou turn not ' he will whet his sword, and prepare 
instruments of death.' Unheard of tortures are a-preparing ; therefore it 
behoves us to inquire in what terms we stand with God. That king in the 
parable, Luke xiv. 31, hearing that a foreign prince, provoked, was making 
war against him, sat down and considered whether he were able to encounter 
him. And I beseech you so to do. Who ever went on against him and 
prospered ? ' Do we provoke the Lord to jealousy ? are we stronger than 
he ? ' 1 Cor. x. 22. ' If I speak of strength.' saith Job, ' there is no deal- 
ing with him,' submitting to him, for he is strong, Job ix. 19. ' What is 
weakness in God is stronger than the strength of men,' 1 Cor. i. 25. What 
is weaker than a man's breath, which can scarce blow away a straw? And 
yet • by the breath of his countenance we are consumed,' Job iv. 9. It 
was but a word, but a breath, that made the world ; and we are but as the 
dust of the balance, Isa. xl. 15, soon blown away. He is wise and also 
strong; so Job saith. And therefore consider withal, that there is no way 
of escaping, but by sending out for conditions of peace. So in the parable, 
Luke xiv. 32. That was the issue of that king's consultations, that when 
he found that his enemy had prepared against him, and would be too hard 
for him, he sends out his conditions of peace. And withal let me tell you 
this for your comfort, have any of you a mind to make peace with him ? 
Then be assured he will be at peace with you. The text, 2 Cor. v. 18, 
brings the news of it : ' God was in Christ ' (hath made it his business) ' re- 
conciling the world.' And contrary to the use and custom, sends em- 
bassages to us to be reconciled unto him. And lo, his earnestness : ' All 
things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself.' If ever God was 
earnest or serious in all or anything, he is in this : Isa. xxvii. 4, 5, ' Fury 
is not in me : who would set the briars and thorns against me in battle ? 
I would go through them, I would burn them together. Or let him take 
hold of my strength, that he may make peace with me ; and he shall 
make peace with me.' Though he be strong, yet as it is there, let a man 
take hold of his strength. Take hold of that arm which is lifted up in fury, 


all the whole creation cannot stay or rule it. ' And he shall make peace 
with me,' says God. Yea, all the power which is in him shall be turned 
for you, and shewn in pardoning you. Only let the briars and thorns, 
Heb. vi., sinners that go on in their sins, and set themselves in battle 
array against him, let them look to themselves, for • I will go through them ' 
(says God), ' and burn them together,' ver. 4. 

And therefore take Amos his counsel, Amos. iv. 12, that seeing he will 
surely do thus unto thee unless thou turn, ' prepare to meet thy God,' as 
that king did iu the parable, and as Abigail did when she heard that David 
was coming on in fury. Throw away your weapons, ' cast away your 
transgressions,' ' why will you die ? ' Do as Shimei to David : seeing he 
will overcome, go forth to meet him, and put yourselves into his hands : 
2 Sam. xix. 20, ' Thy servant knows' (saith he) ' that I have sinned ; so I 
am come to meet the lord my king.' This overcame David, though egged on 
by servants for to kill him. David was overcome by it, being an ingenuous 
man ; much more it will prevail with God, a God of all mercy. The truth 
is, he desires but to be acknowledged to be God both in damning and 
saving; to overcome and to be justified, when he is judged, which he is when 
he is submitted unto. ' Do I not know that I am king this day ? ' saith David, 
giving a reason why he pardoned him, ver. 20. Thus also, when Ben- 
hadad was in Ahab's power, 1 Kings xx., his servants advised him to send 
messengers unto him with ropes about their necks, and to put on sack- 
cloth, thereby to acknowledge he might hang them up if he pleased, for 
they and their king were in his power, if so it pleased him to deal with 
them. Only they knew the kings of Israel were merciful kings, and so 
they came and put themselves into his hands, and humbly sought him, 
running by his chariot- side, waiting if any word of hope and encourage- 
ment might fall from him. And thus they obtain, not of a David, but of 
an Ahab, a hard-hearted Ahab. And if this king of Israel (the worst of 
them) were thus merciful, what is the God of Israel ? ' the God and Father 
of mercies ! ' 

Go home therefore, and fall down upon thy knees, and with a heart 
broken and dissolved to water, acknowledge thy treasons, rebellions, and 
injuries against him who never did thee hurt ; yea, who hath never ceased 
to do thee good ; yea, who hath striven with an unwearied patience to 
soften and overcome this strong and stout rebellion. Lay open all thy sins, 
and spread all thy bold and bloody transgressions as a scroll before him ; set 
over each their accents and aggravations. Point every confession with 
tears and sighs ; rip up thy heart and life ; say it is thou who hast polluted 
the earth, sinned against heaven and him that sits therein, and art alto- 
gether unworthy of the name, much more of the privilege, of a son ; that 
thou hast forfeited thy creation, and deservest not to be called a creature. 
Acknowledge thy crime, with self-loathing and self-condemnation, as with 
a rope put about, and ready fitted to thy neck by thine own hand, as 
Benhadad's servants did. Say to God, that if he will destroy thee he may; 
and if he doth be shall need no other judge to condemn thee but thyself; 
no other indictment than this thy free confession, made of thine own accord. 
And to shew that he needeth not to send for thee, and hale thee to execu- 
tion, say, Thou freely presentest thyself to him. And referring thyself to 
him, say, as David did, 2 Sam. xv. 26, ' If thou hast not pleasure in me, 
do with me as seemeth good to thee.' Yet withal, bemoan thyself to him, 
as Ephraim is said to do, Jer. xxxi. Confess thou hast ' perverted that 
which is right,' and it hath not profited thee at all ; that thou hast wearied 

Chap. IV. J in our salvation. 147 

thyself in the ways of sin, and last run away from him days without num- 
ber, who is thy fountain of life ; and that it was never well with thee since 
thou didst forsake him. Yea, that thou hast destroyed thyself to do him 
injury, in whom alone thy help is to be found. And falling down yet 
lower, tell him that now thy life depends upon his breath, that he is that 
lawgiver who alone is ablo to save thee or condemn thee. A word of his 
saves thee, and it may condemn thee. And above all, get thy heart to 
melt for thy unkindness to him. Say, that though thou hadst never been 
the better for the goodness that is in him, or shouldst never hope to be, yet 
to wrong him, who is a God that is so great, and yet withal so good, that 
hath infinite glory joined with holiness, riches of grace, mercy with so much 
power, that is so able to destroy, and so willing to forgive, is that most 
grieves thee. That thou shouldst kick against him in whom thou livest, 
and movest, and hast thy being ; at whose expense and charges it hath 
been that thou hast hitherto been maintained ; and yet to no other end 
but to sin against him ; say to him, that it is this thought which wounds 
thy soul. Acknowledge that thou hast already spent him millions of riches 
of patience and long-suffering, and all to no other fruit or purpose but to 
offend him ; and of all which thou canst give him no other account but 
millions of sins and injuries returned against him. And besides this vast 
expense of the common stock of mercy, common to others with thee, thou 
hast neglected and despised the offer of as much mercy as were sufficient to 
save all the devils (if they were capable of it) ; and if he yet pardon thee, thou 
must cost him yet much more than thou hast already spent him, the mercies 
of eternity, the soul-blood of his Son, which blood and mercy is what thou 
art now a- suing for. And after all this thou must be beholden to that free 
grace thou hast all this while been sinning against and despising, or thou 
art undone. And none but everlasting, unchangeable, and sure mercies 
will serve thy turn. Thy transgressions, and rebellions, and corruptions 
are of that extent, that less mercy will not reach or hold out to pardon thee, 
but fall short of what thou owest ; which mercies, if yet thou obtainest not, 
it is not for want of good will in God, but from hardness of heart in thee to 
him, yea, to thyself. And let this consideration further make thy heart 
to gush and bleed, and strike thee down into the deepest confusion, never 
to look up again but with shame and sorrow; but yet tell him, that if thou 
couldst yet find in thy heart truly to turn to him, he can find enough and 
enough (to an overflowing) in his heart to be at peace with thee. 

Thus ' go and take words unto thyself,' as he himself directs thee in 
Hosea xiv. 2. He will be sought to, and he loves to be entreated. It is 
melody in hie ears to hear a poor soul bemoan itself unto him. Soft words 
pacify wrath, Prov. xv. 1, much more stirs bowels of mercy. His heart 
cannot hold out against such volleys of tears and cries from a heart that is 
broken. Turn all thou hast heard or read about reconciliation on his part 
into motives and arguments to move him to shew mercy unto thee. Tell 
him it is true, it is in his power to shew his justice on thee if he will, and 
that thou art freely come to present thy naked breast to him as a butt that 
deserves to be shot at, and he might spend his arrows on thy hateful soul, 
or sheath his sword in it ; only desire him to remember, before he doth it, 
that it is the same sword which he once thrust into his Son's bowels, when 
it pleased him to ' put him to grief, and make his soul an offering for sin.' 
And when thou hast said it, shut thine eyes and trust him. And oh ! wash, 
bathe, and plunge thy soul in that fountain which he then opened. Beseech 
him to consider that he himself found out a way to pacify himself for sin, 


such a way as thou and all the angels should have trembled to have thought 
of, and couldst not have believed, but that himself hath done it and revealed 
it; yea, and that he himself, unbespoken to by thee, or any of us of man- 
kind, sough*, to his Son to be mediator, when thou hadst no being. And 
say to him, Lord, wilt thou not now accept it, when he hath performed it 
at thine own request, and when it is sought for at thy hands ? Further 
tell him, that as the motion came first from himself to his Son, so from 
himself first to thee ; that thou shouldst never have had the face, or heart, 
or will, to have sought him thus ; but that he first set thee a-work, spake 
to thy hard heart, won and allured thy soul to trust, by what thou hearest 
of his love, which hath so taken thy heart, that now thou canst never part 
with it. He doth beseech thee by us to be reconciled to him, and though 
he doth it by us, yet he would have come himself, but that he is to appear 
in heaven to intercede. Urge him that there are but a few in the world 
that do seek to be reconciled to him, and if he should turn any away that 
do, he would have fewer. Who would fear him, if there were not mercy 
in him, and plenteous redemption ? And thou mayest wax yet bolder, 
according to what you heard out of Job xxxiii. and other scriptures. Thou 
hast heard by his messengers, those who have been sent to thee by himself, 
of an infinite and all-sufficient righteousness in his Son, laid up in him also 
by his own procurement, and betrusted with him for the bestowing of it 
upon those that should come to him for it. Whereupon he hath said, ver. 
26, ' I will render to man his righteousness.' Put this in suit, for it is but 
as in trust committed to him, and plead that he received it to that very end 
to give it forth to them that sue for it. And he hath therefore said that 
when any one soul draws nigh unto the grave (as thine doth now) and a 
messenger from him shews to him, and gives him this righteousness, Job 
xxxiii. 23, and that thereupon if he pray unto him, he will be favourable, 
and he shall see his face with joy ; and that he will say, Deliver him, I 
have found a ransom ; for he will render to man his righteousness, ver. 2G. 
Go sue for it therefore as thine ; pray, and plead thou thus, and he cannot 
deny thee. 

But if it be objected against thee, that it is true these things are in him, 
but thou art a sinner, an enemy ; say thou then tbat if this objection stand 
good, his Son must be in heaven alone, and none of mankind must be there 
with him ; no man must stand in his sight. Say, Thou hast heard that to 
take away sins was the main design of the covenant of grace, and had it 
not been that he meant to save sinners, he needed not have pitched on the 
course of saving men by his Son, for he might have created new friends 
cheaper ; but that he knew the saving an enemy would shew more love. 
If the greatness of thy sins be urged upon thy conscience, say, All fulness 
dwells in his Son ; a fulness, and all fulness of merit above what thy sins 
can reach to. If that these sins have been continued in by thee these 
many years, urge that this fulness dwells in his Son, and hath done so, 
longer than sin hath done in thee. But if he say, Yea, but those I do save, 
believed and repented ; ask him, Who gave them that repentance and that 
faith ? Didst not thou, Lord ? ' By grace ye are saved, through faith,' 
Eph. ii. 8. And that faith is not of ourselves neither, ' it is the gift of 
God ;' which beseech him therefore to work in thee. 

Come thus with a true heart to him, for thou must draw near to him, as 
with confidence of being accepted, so with a true heart, for both are joined 
together, Heb. x. 22. Wherefore I take the meaning to be (in opposition 
to a false, disloyal, and traitorous heart) to signify such a heart as for tbe 


future resolves to be true to him, even as one friend would or ought to be 
to another, or as thou would st bo to thyself; a heart truly loving him, 
resolving to keep thyself chaste and true to him alone. Even as the spouse 
that had played the whore with many lovers in former times, and now 
returns wooing and suing to her husband, not only for to pardon her, but 
to love her, and to receive her again with a conjugal love, and to let her 
enjoy communion and fellowship with him, as a wife doth with a husband, 
from whom she had been so long time estranged. Do thou seriously and 
truly resolve to let go all whorish and carnal friendship, with other lovers, 
as the world and all things therein, which hath enticed thy heart away from 
God. Come also with a true heart, resolving to be loyal and faithful to 
him, as a subject to a lawful prince ; submitting to all his laws for ever, 
hating and standing out against every sin as an utter enemy ; being for 
him and for his glory ; having respect to him in all your actions (as you 
would have such a regard to one you love more dearly than yourselves, 
whom it grieves you to displease, and in comparison of holding whose 
friendship you count not your life precious or dear unto you) ; fully sub- 
mitting to his commanding and condemning will ; standing out in nothing, 
resolving to give up thyself in the deepest services of doing or suffering 
whatsoever he shall set thee about ; resolving to be nothing for thyself, but 
to be all to him, and true to him as thou wouldst be to thyself. All this, 
I take it, is meant by a true heart ; and this it is to be reconciled. Now 
sue thus, and continue suing, and all the saints in heaven must yet be con- 
demned if ever thou art, for they came thither no other way than thus. 
But without this, though not for this (for God accepts freely), an husband 
would never accept his adulterous wife (though she slubbered never so 
much) except he saw she resolved to live now true and chaste to him. No 
more will God receive, except he sees in thee such holy resolutions. And 
though man may be deceived, yet God searcheth the hearts, and cannot be 

Only in the last place, as the conclusion of all, see thou dost this presently, 
and not defer it a whit ; and this the nature of reconciliation requires of 
thee. For that reconciliation which shall be accepted must proceed out of 
good will to God, as hath been spoken. So as when a man returns, he 
mourns that he hath stood out, and been an enemy so long, and that he 
came in no sooner. And therefore if thou sayest now, after all this urging, 
that thou wilt reconcile thyself hereafter, it argues thou intenclest not to 
do it in truth of heart, so as God should accept thee. For if thou after- 
wards comest out of necessity, though thou suest (as Esau did) with tears, 
yet thou shalt not be accepted, as he was not. If a bare submission would 
serve thy turn, though unfeigned, thou mightst defer and make thy peace 
afterwards ; but it being to be reconciliation, it requires absolutely the 
present time. No time so fit as now ; deferring argues enmity. An enemy 
will submit to an enemy when he is cast into a strait, as Shimei did, but a 
friend will return of himself. 

And besides, secondly, let this thought move you, Shall God and Christ 
have busied themselves about your reconciliation from everlasting, and 
spent an eternity of thoughts upon it ; and will you defer to think of it till 
the hour of death or sickness ? Hath God made this his first work and 
master-piece ? And do you make repentance to be your refuse work, to 
be done at your castaway leisure ? Hath it took up the delights of the 
great God, hath he been so forward in it ; and must you be haled and 
forced to it ? And if that will not move you, consider the danger of delays. 


' Agree with thine adversary' (says Christ) 'while thou art in the vv ay.' 
God now in this Lie offers to deal with thee upon terms of friendship, but 
if once thou comest before the judge (as Christ says), and so before God 
as a judge, will he regard any ransom ? Will he then come to any com- 
position ? No ; he will not rest content (as Solomon saith) though thou 
givest him many gifts. Or if thou shouldst then obtain thy peace, yet it 
would be upon harder conditions than now ten thousand times. Learn 
wisdom of him in the parable, Luke xiv. 31, who when he saw he was not 
able to encounter with his enemy, he sent to him for conditions of peace, 
• whilst he was yet afar off' (the text says) ; for he knew that if he deferred 
till the enemy came nigher, with his armies of thy sins and his wrath, and 
sat down before the walls, he would hardly be brought to remove his siege ; 
and if so, yet upon harder conditions, if at all. Now his coming against, 
thee may be nigher than thou art aware. ' This night' (it may be) : ' The 
judge stands at the door,' says James. Yet suppose judgment be deferred 
and the judge to be afar off, yet it is the safest way to send out speedily, 
and to sue for conditions of peace. For when God's wrath hath begirt thee 
round about at the day of death or sickness, it would be more difficult by 
far, if at all thou dost obtain it. 

;: God may shoot at thee suddenly, and at one shoot, at one blow, kill thee 
as he did the sons of Eli, and cut thee off ere thou hast time even to do 
that which thou thinkest will serve the turn, which yet will not. For it is 
not bare submission, but reconciliation ; not necessitated, but free and 
voluntary, proceeding out of good will, that must be the condition of thy 
peace. Observe Shimei's policy, and follow his example ; who, when he 
heard that David was settled in his kingdom, and so knew he had power 
to crush him, he being conscious of his rebellion, came in voluntarily, and 
was the first of the rebels that submitted, and soon got his peace. So do 
thou ; do it now, and be glad and thankful if God will yet, after this long 
time of rebellion, accept thee again. 

Chap. 1.1 in our salvation. 161 


Of the work which the Holy Spirit efecteth in us, as it is expressed under the 
notion of our being begotten unto God, and of a new birth; from which the 
necessity of regeneration is farther demonstrated. — Of the nature of the thing 
begotten in us, as it is set forth under the notion of spirit, John iii. 6. 


The necessity of the neiv birth demonstrated, and the nature of it described, from 
the notion of our being begotten unto God, 1 Pet. i. 3—5. 

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which, according to 
his abundant mercy, hath begotten us again unto a lively hope, by the resur- 
rection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance incorruptible, unde- 
Jih'il, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you, who are kept hy 
the power of God through faith unto salvation, ready to be revealed in the 
last time. — 1 Pet. I. 3-5. 

The believers whom Peter wrote to were stranger Jews, cast out and dis- 
persed from their own land and inheritances (as ver. 1 insinuates) ; and he 
being the apostle of the circumcision, and so the Jews being committed to 
him as his proper flock (as Paul was the apostle of the Gentiles or uncir- 
cumcision, Gal. ii. 7), to comfort them against this their dispersion, he puts 
them in mind of another and greater inheritance, which also by a birth 
higher and diviner than that of theirs from Abraham, who gave them right 
to the other inheritance in Canaan, was estated on them. ' Who ' (i. e., 
God, saith he) ' hath begotten us to an inheritance,' &c. The carnal Jew 
boasted of his birth from Abraham, as that whereby also they challenged 
God to be their Father, John viii., from the 33d to the 45th. And when 
they had occasion to bless God for any eminent mercy, their form of bless- 
ing was, ' Blessed be the Lord God, the God of Israel,' &c, Ps. lxxii. 18. 
But Peter, under the New Testament, instructs them that, instead of glory- 
ing they had Abraham to their father, they should rejoice and glory in this, 
that they were begotten again of God, and of the ' incorruptible seed,' the 
Spirit of God, ver. 23. And so John Baptist, the son of that Zacharias, 
in the early times of the gospel, taught them, John i. 12, 13, compared 
with Luke iii. 8 ; and by that birth they became a ' choice generation ' in- 
deed, as our Peter speaks in his second chapter. 

Again ; instead of entitling God by the name of ' God of Israel,' Peter 
in the New Testament teacheth them to enstyle and bless him now as the 
' God and Father of Jesus Christ,' and to view him upon that account as 
become a God and Father unto them. And lastly, instead of boasting of 


their Canaan, their so ancient inheritance, from which these saints of that 
nation were now cast out, and the whole nation was to follow them soon 
after his death, he instructs them to solace themselves with a lively hope 
of an inheritance far better seated and conditioned : ' An inheritance incor- 
ruptible, and undefined, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for 
you ;' which their new birth had given them right unto. And this is the 
more special aspect and coherence of those words. 

I have no further design upon this text in the opening of it, than what 
it offers to us concerning regeneration ; which done, I shall leave it, and 
pass to another that speaks of other things about it. This text will put us 
upon the consideration of two things concerning it. 

I. Why it is termed or called a begetting, as elsewhere a being born 
again, and what that metaphor eminently imports, and instructs in it 
about it. r 

II. The necessity of it, as without which God shews us no mercy ; we 
can have no hopes or title to this inheritance. 

I. Why is it called birth, or being begotten ? I shall not prosecute the 
metaphor, but chiefly insist on it to shew the nature of the thing begotten. 

1. It is called a being born again, to shew that it conveys an image, or 
likeness of the begetter. Men are said to make many things which are not 
like themselves, as artificers do ; but they are not said to beget anything 
which bears not in species their own likeness. The first Adam had an 
image to convey to his seed : therefore, Gen. v. 3, it is said Adam begat 
Seth after his own image and likeness. So Christ, the second Adam, hath 
also an image to convey unto them that are his, 1 Cor. xv. 49 : therefore 
the way of conveying it is called a birth, and he a Father : Col. iii. 10, 
' The new man is renewed after the image of him that created him,' namely, 
at first, it being for substance the same, which (as it follows) is to be like 
God and Christ in those gracious dispositions which he shews to be in him- 
self in his dealings towards us. So, ver. 12, 13, ' Put on therefore, as the 
elect of God, bowels of mercies, kindness, humbleness of mind, meekness, 
long-suffering ; forbearing one another, and forgiving one another, if any 
man have a quarrel against any : even as Christ forgave you, so also do 
ye.' As if he had said : As the elect of God, and chosen of God to be his 
children, be like unto him and Christ ; ' so also be you :' or (as our Peter 
expresseth it, 1 Pet. i. 15, 16), ' Be holy, as he is holy.' Now God's holi- 
ness lieth in two things : 1. In the things he willeth and commandeth us. 
2. In making his own glory his own end. Therefore the image of God in 
us must lie in these two things. 

(1.) A conformity or frame of spirit suited unto the things he commands 
or willeth, as the piece is to the pattern : 1 Thess. iv. 2, 3, ' For ye know 
what commandments we gave you by the Lord Jesus. For this is the will 
of God, even your sanctification ;' that is, your sanctification lies in a con- 
formity to his will, and that will of his as expressed in his commands. 

(2.) In having God's glory set up in our hearts as our own utmost end, 
and as the square and measure of all our affections and actions, &c. (as 
self-love was before in us), and the one to be made as co-natural to us as 
self-love once was. This is holiness, and it can be no other or further 
thing, even as in God himself it is not ; it being that in him which forms, 
orders, disposeth, guides, directs, acts all for himself, and swallows up all 
into himself. Now, in the creature, holiness is the likeness of what is in 
himself, and so it is a disposition to be for God, even as God is for himself. 
Therefore whatever is good or excellent in the creature, of what kind soever 

Chap. I.] in our salvation. 153 

of gifts of righteousness, it falling short of the glory of God, it becomes sin. 
So saith the apostle (Rom. iii. 23), setting forth in a summary conclusion 
the sinfulness of man's nature as fallen from God, to which he had spoken, 
ver. 10, 11, 'As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one : there 
is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God ;' that is, 
there is none that aimeth at or setteth up God as his chiefest end, or seeks 
after him as his chiefest good ; and so they fall short of the glory of God, 
and his image, in which at first they were created. To be born again and 
to become a Christian is to make God's interest my own for ever. It is 
the fundamental law of regeneration, and the first enacted in the heart, and 
is general to all believers that are truly such ; so Paul says, Rom. xiv. 7, 8, 
1 For none of us liveth unto himself, and no man dieth unto himself. For 
whether we live, we live unto the Lord ; and whether we die, we die unto 
the Lord : whether we live therefore, or die, we are the Lord's.' None of 
us, that is, of us that are true Christians, though other men are guided by 
other principles. Yea, and observe his inference, it is therefore that we 
are the Lord's, because we are in both life and death for the Lord. Thus 
it is the image of God that is begotten, and although the new creature may 
have many other workings and stirrings of heart divers ways, in humblings 
for sin, sight of a man's natural condition, which are as the films in which 
the new creature is enwrapped, yet this is the birth, the substance of what 
is begotten, and all the other tend unto it. It is the image of God's holi- 
ness, limb for limb. 

II. This work of grace, and the image of God wrought in us, is termed, 
a beginning, to shew that jt^ is ma de a nature inja s, as that image stamped 
on us by birth is said to be, and as all dispositions which we have by birth 
are said to be natural. To have a thing by birth and by nature is all one 
in phrase of speech ; so to be blind by nature signifies that which is so by 
birth. Hence this work, which in the scriptures cited hath been termed 
the image of God, is by our Peter termed ' the divine nature,' 2 Peter i. 4. 
Nature, for its manner of inherency, as natural dispositions use to be in- 
herent in us ; divine, for its tendency and quality, as that which bears a 
Likeness to God's nature, and which carries the soul up to him, as nature 
doth us unto what is suitable thereto. And that by divine nature, which 
some would raise up to a higher sublimation of participation of the essence 
of God, there is meant such divine, holy dispositions wrought in us, is clear 
by its opposite there mentioned by Peter in those words, ' Having escaped 
the corruption that is in the rest of the world through lust.' Corruption 
through lust is that which is destroyed. And as you usually say, that cor- 
ruptio Urdus est generatio alterius, so here, the corruption of this corruption 
is the production of the new creature. Now, the corruption that is in all 
mankind through lust, is the corrupt dispositions and inclinations to evil, 
which are natural unto us ; this is corrupt nature, as we use to say. The 
divine nature is the contrary hereto, which, because freely given, is indeed 
called grace, but yet becomes a new nature to a man begotten ; and accord- 
ing as the Spirits acts it, it puts forth itself in dispositions in manner like 
to those which are natural, as will appear by bringing James's words to 
Peter, chap. iv. 5, 6, ' The spirit that is in us lusteth to envy, but God 
giveth more grace.' That is, w T hereas the natural spirit that is in us puts 
forth itself in lustings and dispositions to envy, and it doth it naturally, 
God gives grace or holiness to lust after meekness, humility ; and the one, 
after a man is regenerated, is as natural as the other afore. And accord- 
ingly, as the flesh or corrupt nature is said to have its lusting to evil things, 


so the spirit of regeneration is said to have its answerable lustings to things 
holy, Gal. v. 17, so as a man may come to understand, and withal take an esti- 
mate, whether he have the spirit of regeneration or no. Every man knows 
by experience what it is to have lustings to evil, dispositions to envy, ambi- 
tion, uncleanness, pride, and finds they are his nature. Hast thou found 
the like dispositions of love, ingenuity to God, to seek his glory, to love the 
communion of saints, &c. ? ' I need not write to you : ye are taught of 
God to love one another,' says Paul, 1 Thes. iv. 9. The opposition shews 
he speaks of it as such an impression as by nature God puts into the crea- 
tures, and so they are said to be taught of him ; such is this divine new 
nature. Therefore, measure that good that is in thee by the evil ; I say 
not for the degree (thou mayest find corruption working more strongly), but 
for the kind, the one works as naturally, as to the innateness of workings, as 
the other. 

Use 1. We read much in Scripture of men greatly enlightened, receiving 
the word with joy, made partakers of the Holy Ghost, that yet fall away ; 
yet among all the great and glorious things said of them, you have it no- 
where said that they are begotten again, or born again, as likewise nowhere 
that they are justified. And the reason is evident ; 1. Because justification 
is the act of God towards his, pardoning and accepting of them to life. 
And therefore if God doth it at all, he doth it traly and really, or not at 
all; it can have no counterfeit. So in like manner, to be begotten again 
notes a state of sonship, a being truly made a child: for if God begets, he 
begets genuinely, it proves always a true child of his begetting; and who- 
ever is born of God hath his image, his nature, or, as the apostle speaks, 
true holiness: Eph. iv. 24, 'And that you put on the new man, which after 
God is created in righteousness and true holiness.' They are said to be 
sanctified, Heb. x. (for that may have a counterfeit), namely, a setting apart 
to outward service by gifts and enlightenments ; but to shew it is not true 
sanctification, or after God in true holiness, they are never said to be bom 
of God. They as servants live in the family, are put into offices and ser- 
vices, and to that end do receive gifts and graces to lay out as talents, 
Mat. xxv., which not improved, they lose ; but being not made children, 
therefore it is they abide not always in the house; as Christ speaks, John 
viii. 35, ' And the servant abideth not in the house for ever, but the son 
abideth ever.' They are hired servants, not begotten children. They have 
gifts from him as a lord, but not his image as from a father, and so are 
never said to be begotten. Now, take then the poorest soul, whose heart 
hath childlike dispositions running in his heart to God, good nature, in- 
genuities ; for grace is but good nature to God, and works toward God, as 
good nature doth to them we love. Take a soul whose heart is taught of 
God to apply itself unto God in all his dealings, so as still his heart works 
good naturally and like a child towards him, if he frowns or smiles, loves 
or chides, whips or gives favours. He fears his goodness more than his 
wrath, finds the glory of God in some degree naturalized in his soul as the 
supremest law, as set once next in him before. And though perhaps his 
faith cannot call God Father, or challenge him as such, yet his heart utters 
it, his love cries it. He finds love to God and his people working as kindly 
in a measure, as he hath found self-love working to and for himself; his 
affections of fear, joy, desires, hatred, rising and falling according as the 
glory of God is interested. The least of these are better and surer evi- 
dences than many of those glorious incomes you hear spoken of, that come 
and visit men's souls at times, as flashes of lightning do a house, tran- 

Chap. I.J in our salvation. 155 

siently and away ; whereas it is a new nature, a holy frame of heart, that is 
constant, a seed of God abiding, that makes man said to bo born again. 
This is regeneration, and without this all other will come to nothing. After 
the apostle had spoken such glorious things of men that fall away, Heb. vi., 
a man then reading ver. 9 that there are better things than these that ac- 
company salvation, would expect some seraphical manifestations, exceeding 
all these, to be those better things. But the apostle instances in love to 
the name and glory of God, and his truth and children, as one of those 
things that exceeds all these, which is a childlike disposition of one be- 
gotten and born of God. t 

Use 2. The second thing to be considered is the necessity hereof to sal- 
vation, which is demonstrated out of the text thus : All do and will acknow- 
ledge that without God's being merciful to a man, there can be no salvation. 
But God's mercy (suppose it is as abundant, as it is, as you are able to 
conceive of it) can nor never will save any man without regeneration ; for 
it is clear in the text, that herein it is that God shews the abundancy of 
his mercy, even to beget again those he means to save, as without which 
he could not save. This is elear also from Tit. iii. 5, ' According to his 
mercy hath he saved us ; ' so then we are saved by mercy only, as the 
moving cause, but yet how doth mercy save whom it will have mercy 
upon? It is ' by the renewing of the Holy Ghost.' Yea, in ver. 4 herein 
is made the great appearance or manifestation of the love and kindness of 
God borne to any soul, that he renews it : ' After that the kindness and 
love of God appeared, not by works of righteousness which we have done, 
but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, 
and renewing of the Holy Ghost.' So then if God means to manifest love 
and mercy in the salvation of any, he doth it in and by this, or which is 
all one, if he loves any it appears in this. Herein is the love of God 
manifested, as John upon another occasion speaks. Now, for the demon- 
stration of this, take such reasons as are congenial to the text. 

(1.) Without regeneration God bears not the actual relation of nor be- 
comes a Father to us. God owns no children but such as are like him, 
and begotten of him after his image. If you call on him as your Father, 
says Peter in the same chapter, ver. 17, then as obedient children you 
must be holy as he is holy, ver. 14-16, not fashioning yourselves accord- 
ing to your former lusts ; that is, you must be new cast, new fashioned, 
and so become' holy, as he who called you is holy. All are ready to chal- 
lenge God to be their Father, as the Jews (John viii. 40) did with a bold 
and impudent forehead challenge God to be their Father, when yet they 
were full of envy and malice towards Christ and his disciples. No, says 
Christ, ' Ye are of your father the devil,' and his image you bear, ' and his 
lusts you will do,' ver. 44. In Jeremiah iii. God, as Christ doth in John, 
upbraideth the impenitent Jews for the like impudence : * Wilt thou not 
from this time,' he speaks what had been their wont from time to time, 
come and ' cry to me, My Father ? ' whenas it follows, ver. 5, ' thou hast 
done evil things as thou couldst,' and thinkest to call me thy Father, or 
that I as a Father will ever own such. But seeing God will become a 
Father even to such sinners, how comes it to pass that in the 19th verse 
God is brought in as consulting with himself how to save these rebels, and 
how to come to own them for his children ? And he brings it in by way 
of objection: 'But I said' (God makes a stand at it), 'How shall I put 
thee among the children ? ' come to enroll thee into the catalogue whom I 
will own as such ? And it is an objection God himself can never well 


answer, without turning and regenerating them, and causing them not to 
depart from him. So it follows, 'Thou shalt call me, My Father ; and 
shalt not turn away from me.' There is the answer, and the only answer 
can be given to it. So then God is no Father, nor owns any among his 
children, without it. 

(2.) Without this work wrought in us, Christ becomes not our Lord and 
husband. When Adam was to be married, God looked over all the beasts 
of the field, and finding never a fit match for him among them, he made one 
like him of his own rib, and in the same image with him. Now, if thou 
hast the same image wherein thou wast born, thou art a more unfit match 
for Christ than beasts for Adam. Would any of you be content to have 
no other wife but a beast, a cow, or a sow, or a devil succubus ? God 
would not have Christ unequally yoked : ' Now what fellowship can light 
have with darkness, Christ with Belial ? ' 2 Cor. vi. 14. He speaks it to 
us in the name and person of Christ, that we should not be unequally 
yoked, and therefore he would not have Christ much more. God would 
have his Son have a wife that should please him, and have a beauty suit- 
able to his mind. Christ loves beauty as well as you, as you may see Ps. 
xlv. 11, where Christ is set forth as one who hateth iniquity and loveth 
righteousness, ver. 7, 8, and therefore God gives his daughter, the church, 
commandment to forsake the sins she was born and brought up in : 
' Hearken, daughter, and consider, incline thine ear,' that is, to my 
Son's commandments, ' and forget thy father's house ; so shall the king 
(Christ) greatly desire thy beauty.' 

(3.) Without this we can have no title to, no hope of enjoyment or pos- 
session of, that inheritance, 1 Pet. v. 5. We can have, 

[l.J No title. Heaven is an inheritance, and as inheritances go by birth, 
so doth it also : ' Who hath begotten us again,' saith the text, ' to an in- 
heritance incorruptible.' H no son, no heir; and if no new birth, no son. 
Kingdoms upon earth have two ways of succession : first, by choice or elec- 
tion ; secondly, by birth ; and this latter, for a monarchy, is held the best 
way of succession. Now God (who takes into his dispensations all the 
rules that men go by), hath ordained to settle and establish heaven, to all 
that shall be saved, by both these titles. 1. By election, but that is secret 
to himself: ' The Lord only knows who are his.' Therefore, 2, to declare 
it to men themselves, and to others, he hath ordained a heavenly birth 
openly and actually to entitle them to it : ' Whom he hath predestinated, 
them also hath he called,' Bom. viii. 30. As God gave the earth and all 
things in it unto Adam, and all that should be born of him, so hath he given 
heaven and all the promises unto Christ, and unto all that should be born 
of him also. And as such as was the earthly man, such are the earthly 
men ; so such as was the heavenly man Christ, such are all his to become 
even heavenly as he is. 

[2.] Without being converted there is no hope of this inheritance. Thou 
mayest have a dead hope, a false hope, that will deceive thee, but not a 
' lively hope.' Is any man so fond as to hope for a crown that was not 
born to it ? How then can we hope for heaven, if we have not the new 
birth, God's image, to shew for it ? 

[3.] We cannot otherwise possess it. IS a reasonable soul, so created by 
God, would come into this world, and possess the good things in it, it must 
necessarily be put in a body, and clothed with flesh, which is to be had 
from Adam by a fleshly generation (it could else never come to see the 
light of this sun, it could else never see this world, nor possess anything 

Chap. I.] in our salvation. 157 

in it), so nor can men's souls ever come to set a foot into tho other world, 
the kingdom of heaven, if they be not clothed with God's image, and so 
born of Christ. In 2 Cor. v. 8, there is a parenthesis which bears this 
sense : ' II so be that being clothed we be not found naked.' He is 
a-speaking of the soul's being clothed with a house from heaven when 
separate from the body ; and discoursing thereof he casts in this as a cau- 
tion for all Christians, that they look to it their souls be clothed upon with 
the new man, which is the begotten of Christ ; for if they be found devoid 
thereof, and naked, they cannot expect the enjoyment or possession of the 
house that is above. This is Calvin's interpretation, and it is a true one. 
And hereof Christ himself useth this expression, that ' unless a man be born 
again, he cannot' (so much as) ' see the kingdom of God,' nor peep into it ; 
and much less can he enter into it, or set a foot in it. 

[4.] I may add, fourthly, though he could enter, yet he could not enjoy 
it. Heaven would not be heaven to him. Heaven is an inheritance of 
light, says the apostle, Col. i. 12, and therefore we that are naturally sin 
and darkness must be made meet for it : ' Who hath made us meet to be 
partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light : having delivered us from 
the power of darkness,' ver. 13. Heaven is 'an inheritance incorruptible,' 
1 Pet. i. 4. Now, if flesh and blood (that is, frail mortal flesh) can- 
not inherit the kingdom of God, nor corruption incorruption, as, 1 Cor. 
xv. 50, the apostle speaks, then much more not flesh, that is, that sinful 
defilement which we were born in. If the body must be changed ere it 
can be glorified, then much more the soul ; for this glory in heaven is an 
inheritance undefiled, and no unclean thing can enter in, Rev. xxi. 27. 
Without holiness no man can see God ; that is, so see him as to be happy 
in him. Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God, and so be 
blessed in the sight of him. 

Let us see and make* this necessity of the new birth. We are fallen 
into times in which the thing and doctrine of it is forgotten and laid aside, 
in which there are multitudes of professors, but few converts, many that 
seem to walk in the way to life, that never came in at the strait gate. There 
is a zeal amongst us to advance this or that reformation in religion, and it 
hath been all the cry. But, my brethren, where is regeneration called for 
or regarded ? We have seen the greatest outward alterations that ever 
were in any age, kingdoms turned and converted into commonwealths, the 
power of heaven and earth shaken ; but men, although they turn this way 
and that, from this or that way, from this opinion to that, yet their hearts 
generally turn upon the same hinges they were hung on when they came 
into the world. In this University of Oxford we have had puttings out and 
puttings in, but where is putting off the old nature and putting on the new ? 
Where do we hear (as we had wont) of souls carrying home the Holy Ghost 
from sermons, of their being changed and altered, and made new, and of 
students running home weeping to their studies, crying out, ' What shall I 
do to be saved ?' This was heretofore a wonted cry. Conversion is the 
only standing miracle in the church, but I may truly say these miracles are 
well nigh ceased ; we hear of few of them. 

With whatever advances in religion and incomes from God, or purity of 
reformation, we may flatter ourselves, I am sure that regeneration and con- 
version is it that must make Christians in this age, as in all the ages afore 
us. As take the whole generation of mankind, though mankind in one age 
hath grown up in stature, and in duration of years of life (as afore the flood), 
* Qu. ' mark '?— Ed. 


more than in another, and may be more civilised in manners, more raised 
in parts and abilities in one above another ; yet the propagation of the race 
of men on earth is one and the same in all, by being born, begotten, formed 
in the womb, in all substantials of being. If they be men they must be born. 
So in the church : of whatever progress in truths or holiness one aga may 
excel in above another, yet if regeneration, the thing itself, and the doc- 
trine of it, goes not on, the church is not increased, nor is there a multipli- 
cation of inhabitants of the other world. 


That by spirit, John iii. 5, is not meant the indwelling of the Spirit. — Nor 
that, in the new birth, the Holy Ghost produceth in us the same nature which 
himself hath. 

That which is bom of the Spirit is spirit. — John III. 6. 

You have here the thing begotten in us by the Spirit of God at the new 
birth, set forth in the whole and the general nature of it, expressing what is 
most sublime in it. It is spirit, which denotes the suprernest kind of being. 
I say in the whole nature of it, that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. 
It is all, and the whole of it, spiritual, and this gives us a general nature 
common to all the parts of the new birth. All, and every grace, though 
diversified by the special objects they are exercised about, yet agree in this 
common and general nature that they are spirit, or spiritual graces. Sor- 
row for sin, and humiliation, is such a sight and sense of sin as is spiritual. 
And thus justifying faith is a spiritual faith in all the acts of it. 

1. Let us inquire what is meant by spirit here, by considering what it 
is not. 

(1.) It is not the communication of the Holy Spirit himself which is here 
meant, for though, indeed, he himself is given to us as the author of our 
regeneration, and though himself dwelleth in us immediately, and not by 
his graces only (as I have before proved), yet the giving of and the indwell- 
ing of the Holy Ghost in us, is in no wise to be termed our being born o 
the Spirit, nor is it anywhere in Scripture so styled. Our being born of 
the Spirit notes out an effect or work of the Spirit in us, as that which is 
born of another is, and as the conception of the human nature of Christ is 
said to be of the Holy Ghost, Mat. i. 18, 19. 

(2.) It is not the begetting of a nature or being, the same that the Spirit 
himsel r is of. It is not a communication of the Godhead to us, making us 
' God of God' (as some have blasphemed), nor ' Spirit of Spirit' ; in which 
sense Christ's Godhead is termed Spirit (Heb. ix. 14), and ' very God of 
very God.' But this spiritual nature in us is not a spark of the divine 
nature struck or shot forth unto our souls. But it is, for the kind of it, a 
creature which is for ever distinct from the Deity, as the apostle severs them, 
Rom. ix. 5, when he speaks of God as ' blessed for evermore.' And 
indeed the Godhead in the indivisible whole of it is eternal, Rom. i. 20, 
but this spirit, or spiritual nature (of which we are now speaking), is born 
in time, for it is produced after a man's having been first born flesh. And 
besides, it is not only styled a creature, but the new creature ; and there- 
fore if it were the divine nature, or God, there would be as many new gods 
as there are men regenerate. 

Chap. II.] in our salvati n. 159 

2. We are now to consider what this spirit, which is born of the Spirit, is. 

One way and a sure one is to conceive of it by the opposite to it, and 
which is set by it on purpose to explain it : ' That which is born of the flesh 
is flesh,' saith Christ. 

Now, what is flesh in Scripture sense, as it is opposed unto the new 
creature ? It is plainly not the substance of a man's nature, or any other 
substance a man is transformed into, but the corruption r the natural sinful- 
jiess_a.nd defi lement of man's nature. And therefore ' the spirit,' or that 
which is born of the Spirit, is in its kind and proportion to be understood 
in like manner. I shall not name many places, but only one which is appo- 
site : in Gal. v. 17, ' The flesh lusteth against the spirit, and the spirit 
against the flesh : and these are contrary the one to the other : so as yon 
cannot do the things you would.' That by flesh here, he means not the 
essence or substance of man's nature, much less as created by God, is evi- 
dent ; because, in ver. 19-21, he says, ' The works of the flesh are mani- 
fest ; adultery, fornication, uncleanness, wantonness, idolatry, witchcraft, 
hatred, and such like : whereof I tell you,' says he, ' that they which do such 
things shall not inherit the kingdom of God.' "What is meant therefore, 
is man's corrupt, degenerate nature : the ' old man' which is said to be 
1 corrupt through deceitful lusts,' Eph. iv. 22. And as all men are born 
flesh, they are in the flesh (Rom. viii. 8) until born again. 

Now together with this he represents the contrary principle of spirit in a 
regenerate man, whereof the one lusting after the spirit, the other after the 
contrary, even before the consent of man's will, they distract the will of a 
man, so as he ' cannot do what he would.' Now then hereby two inherent 
principles in a regenerate man's nature must necessarily be denoted. 

(1.) For as the flesh (which all acknowledge to be man's nature by birth) 
' lusts against the spirit ; ' so the spirit is in like manner said to ' lust 
against the flesh.' And this naturally, for it is before a consent of the will 
one way or other, as well as after such consent. Now to lust (one way or 
other) is the proper and immediate product of the inward inclinations of a 
man's heart and nature. And from these principles, as inherent in our 
nature, each of these lustings draw the will several, yea, contrary ways. 
They work a contrariety of will in us also : ' You cannot do what you would.' 
And therefore spirit-Wast, fre-un d erstood to be & principle mjmin^sjaature, ' 
as well as flesh or corruption is. 

Neither must it be said that the Holy Ghost is that spirit that lusts in 
us, in the like manner as the flesh doth lust against the spirit. He may 
be said to work in us indeed this lusting against the flesh, as he is said to 
make intercession for us in stirring up groans in us, &c, Rom. viii. 27, 
yet so as we are said to groan and pray. So here to lust against the flesh 
is our act, and not the Holy Ghost's ; and therefore is from a principle 
opposite to flesh in our souls, and inherent in us as flesh is, and so made a 
contrary nature in us unto that flesh. 

(2.) These two are said to be contrary, and therefore are as two con- 
trary qualities' in man's nature. For qualities only, not substances, are 
contrary. And if then flesh be such that lusts after evil, then spirit is also 
such that lusteth after good. These are as heat and cold, sickness and 
health, in the same subject, stining and acting one against the other. 

(3.) They are to this purpose compared unto two roots or seminal prin- 
ciples seated in the soul, producing contrary effects and fruits. For he 
says, ver. 22, * But the fruit of the Spirit' (mark that allusion) « is love, 
peace, joy, long-suffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temper- 


ance;' whenas he says on the contrary, 'The works of the flesh,' the 
fruits of the flesh, ' are envyings, murders, wrath, strife,' &c. And this 
place alone is sufficient to confute those that would have the Holy Ghost's 
indwelling only, without his working, an inherent root or principle of grace, 
by which all acts of holiness should become properly ours subjectively, as 
well as his sufficiently,* as he alone acteth that grace in us to bring forth 
every good work. 

Obj. Those of the forementioned high-flown persuasion will interpose 
here, that flesh in Scripture is put for the whole of man's nature, substance, 
and excellencies of any kind ; yea, and the whole creation is denominated 
flesh, and so even man's pure nature, as it was at first created in Adam, 
and all the glories of it are termed flesh. He was a fleshly, earthly man. 
And therefore not only corrupt nature, but all those holy qualities created 
in Adam at first, or that is of the like created nature or rank, though never 
so excellent above them, are here to be understood by spirit. For else that 
which you call spirit (say they) is still indeed but flesh, as the whole crea- 
tion, whether new or old, is to be accounted. 

I thus answer the objection. 

Jns. 1. Be it so, that flesh imports in some scriptures all created excel- 
lencies in their utmost perfection ; yet in this text, and multitudes of others 
throughout the New Testament, it is taken not in that general notion, but 
strictly for the degeneration of man's nature by the fall, conveyed by gene- 
ration fleshly; out of which, if man's nature be not restored by a new birth 
spiritual, he is eternally lost. Well then in this place, and the other places 
now cited, flesh is strictly taken for that corruption of man's nature, and 
spirit likewise oppositely for the principle restored in it, contrary thereunto. 
For it is that flesh that is destroyed by this spirit, as it is contrary. 

Ans. 2. It is true that the best and highest excellencies of Adam's nature 
were but flesh, taken as compared with the nature of God himself. I can 
give you scriptures that even the human nature of Christ, which was the 
glory, the head, the sum of the whole creation, old and new, is but flesh, 
with all its prerogatives ; yea, and profits nothing, as in opposition to the 
Godhead in him. What else is the meaning of John vi. G3, ' The flesh 
profiteth nothing, it is the Spirit that quickeneth ' ? And further, that in 
respect of glorying in God's presence, all the grace in a renewed man, 
termed spirit here, is but flesh in that respect, and comes within the com- 
pass of that saying, 1 Cor. i. 29, ' That no flesh should glory in his pre- 
sence.' For when he adds, ' For of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who is made 
wisdom, righteousness, sanctification, redemption,' he there instancing not 
only in all the glorious graces that are wrought in us, as wisdom and sanctifi- 
cation, but also all the benefits bestowed upon us, as justification and the 
glory of heaven itself, expressed by redemption, he doth thereby plainly call all 
these flesh, as in themselves considered, and as they are excellencies for us 
to glory in ; the glory of which God hath in that respect robbed them of 
and deflowered, forasmuch as God hath made Christ all these to us, which 
otherwise in themselves would be but flesh in us, as the old creation at first 
was. And God doth this that so we might in all these glory in the Lord 
only, and not so much in them thus given us. 

Our souls, by Christ's restauration of them, do remain created substances 

still. He doth not transubstantiate them into the being of the divine nature. 

And when it is said, ' He brings things that are unto nought,' or nothing, 

his meaning is not that God destroys them in respect of their being or 

* Qu. ' efficiently '?— Ed. 


existence; they must have that still. For if by flesh were meant all that is 
created by God, differing from himself, then the substance of the soul, yea, the 
whole of the man, would be destroyed by grace, so there would be no subject 
left capable of having this spirit begotten in it; no, nor would salvation be the 
salvation of our souls. If they say there is some new thing created in the room 
thereof, which they would call spirit, yet still concerning that new thing I 
ask (1.), Either it is a creature made by God, and distinct from him, and 
then I urge upon them it is flesh, even as well as the former soul ; for in 
comparison unto God, so it is, and still within the same sphere and rank of 
beings that are created. Or (2.) it is God and the Godhead. If that be 
their meaning, let them but say so ; but then I will not argue it, but rend 
my garments. And the truth is, they can mean no other thing, if they will 
speak otherwise, of these things than we do. 

Ans. 3. The third answer to the objection made is this. I grant that 
this new spirit, begotten of the Spirit, is of a more divine temper, genius, 
and aspirement than the image of God in Adam was, which though holy, 
yet but in a natural way ; in knowing God in and by the creatures, and 
by the covenant of works, and so only according unto what is naturally 
due unto a creature reasonable, as he first falls out of the hands of his 
maker. And I should not only grant that this new divine nature, born of 
the Spirit, is supernatural, in comparison to corrupt nature and the dis- 
positions thereof, but also in comparison of pure nature. Insomuch as 
Adam was but an earthly, natural man, comparatively to that which is born 
of the Spirit, which is the image of the heavenly, and is ordained in the end 
to see God in himself, and will be raised up thereto ; and at present hath 
such a way of knowing and enjoying God, and such objects spiritual suited 
to it, as Adam's state w r as not capable of. Now therefore, although all the 
old and new creation are flesh to God, as was said, yet the new being of 
our highest aspirement may be termed spirit in comparison of its fellow - 
creatures; and so this new creature, in regeneration wrought, may perhaps 
be styled, in comparison of Adam's image. 

The use of all in brief is this, that men should take heed of being seduced 
and drawn into opinions, under the pretence and allurement of still more 
spiritualness, and spiritualising still all that the Scripture says, or can be 
said of true spiritualness, till they lose all spiritualness. It may be truly 
said that many that seemed to begin soberly in the Spirit, whilst they have 
affected to go still a note higher than the gospel allots unto the creature, as 
the portion of it, intruding into things they have not seen, they have in the 
end come round, and ended in the flesh, even where they were before they 
did begin. You must not think to spiritualise the soul of man beyond what 
can consist with its being a creature, and beyond what, in a lower rank of 
union with God, than Christ hath, it can bear. The nature of things must 
not be destroyed, God must alone be God, and that eternal Spirit. The 
soul must be the soul, enjoying God as such, remaining distinct from him ; 
then attribute what spiritualness you can, lower than what Christ and the 
eternal Spirit is said to have, as being God, and the Son of God. And 
also withal stay but a while to have that addition of grace and glory, which 
our doctrine gives and proclaims to spirits made perfect in heaven, where 
God is all in all : and yet still he and the creature are distinct, though the 
glorified creature enjoys a fulness and immediateness of knowledge in him, 
as in himself, face to face, and in a love raised up and proportioned thereto. 
These distances being kept, let men urge what spiritualness they caD, and 
our doctrine will rise as high as they can do ; yea (which is the glory of onr 

VOL. VI. l 


doctrine), they cannot speak beyond it, but are forced to cant their own 
wild notes in our expressions. If men will go higher, it falls out here as 
with chemists, going about to seek further spirits out of spirits already ex- 
tracted, out of wine or metals sublimated as much as the things will bear. 
In seeking to sublimate them yet further, in the end they all vanish, and 
all ends in smoke. 

So then, that which is spirit here, is metaphrased elsewhere by Paul 
1 Cor. ii. 15, and is all one as to say, 'That which is born of the Spirit is 
spirit,' and that the soul of a man born again is spiritualised 6 'Trviv^arr/.hg, 
that is, a spiritual man, and thereby fitted to receive and take in (as the word 
v. 14 is), ra ^vsv^anxa, spiritual things, ffviv/xarixu/g, spiritually, or as 


That by ' spirit,'' John iii. 6, is meant all those gracious dispositions in the 
soul, which do suit it unto things spiritual, as spiritual. 

I now come to' the explanation of the thing itself, in the general nature of 
it, what is meant b) r spirit. 

I give this distinction of it. Spirit is all those gracious and heavenly 
dispositions and habiliments wrought in the whole soul, especially the spirit 
of the mind, which do elevate and raise it, fit and suit it unto things spi- 
ritual, as spiritual. I shall give you an account of this definition, as it is 
extracted and drawn out of the import of the very word spirit : and then 
come to the examination of it in several particulars. 

1. In the general common nature of it, I term it a new dispositio n or 
temper of spirit. The acceptation and use of the word in the general in 
Scripture, warrants the word spirit being put to import a disposition or 
temper of a man's heart, whether it be applied to what is good or bad 
therein. ' The spirit that dwells in us,' saith James, ' lusteth to envy,' 
James iv. 5. He termeth the very inclination and disposition to envy, 
that is natural in us, the spirit that is in us ; although again, in respect of 
its corruption, it be flesh and fleshly. So Luke ix. 55, Christ rebuking 
James and John for their zealous wishing that fire might devour those of 
that city that did not receive Christ, speaks thus, ' You know not what 
spirit you are of;' that is, what fiery disposition is in your hearts, which 
you have declared by this wish. Thus too an inclination to whoredom is 
termed ' a spirit of whoredom,' Hosea iv. 12 ; a jealous disposition, ' a 
spirit of jealousy,' Num. v. 14. On the contrary, dispositions unto what 
is good are in like manner termed spirit, ' the spirit of meekness,' Gal. 
vi. 1 ; ' the spirit of love and fear,' 2 Tim. i. 7. As also any habiliment 
that elevates and enables the understanding to discern the difference of 
things spiritual (as acquired habits, by reason of use, are said to do, Heb. 
v. 14), is denominated spirit, Isa. xi. 2, 3, ' The spirit of wisdom and of 
the fear of the Lord shall rest upon him, and make him quick of under- 
standing in the fear of the Lord.' So as if you would run over all graces 
particularly, they are heavenly and divine principles put into the soul, and 
each faculty of it carrying it forth to such and such spiritual actings towards 
such or such spiritual objects, Zech. xii. 10. A ' spirit of prayer, of sup- 
plication, and of grace,' that is, to seek after grace and the favour of God ; 
and the same may be said of all other graces whatever. 

2. I add, gracious dispositions, to distinguish this work of the Spirit from 

Chap. XII. j in our salvation. 1G3 

gifts ; which though common to reprobates, yet we find them called spiritual 
gifts, 1 Cor. xiv. 1 ; which in the 12th and 13th chapters he distinguisheth 
from graces, true love to God and the saints, &c. Thus also when the 
apostle James (James iv. 9, 10), had said, ' The spirit that is in us lusteth 
after envy,' he adds these words, ' but God gives more grace,' i. e., a con- 
trary spirit of grace to overcome it. It is there termed in the opposition 
grace ; it is therefore a gracious disposition. The abilities of mind are 
termed gifts, j^as/ff/xara, because freely given ; and spiritual, because they 
empower the mind to take in the notion of spiritual truths, so far as to do 
good to others, but not to a man's own soul savingly, which grace doth. 
True knowledge hath vim plasticam in it, a formative virtue. Neither do 
these gifts raise up the mind to things spiritual, as spiritual, which is the 
great difference to be attended in this matter. 

3. I call it heaveiily, that is, which is wholly divine, and carries the soul 
up to, and fits it for things heavenly. Adam, 1 Cor. xv. 47, 48, is in his 
best estate termed an earthly man. It is evident by the saying, which the 
apostle cites out of Genesis, that he speaks of him and his graces when first 
create I But God hath fitted and prepared for this spiritual man (of whom 
we speak), things heavenly, far above the reach of Adam's estate. I 
observe, Eph. i. 3, that the apostle, when he speaks of the whole lump of 
blessings with which in Christ we are blessed, termeth all and the whole of 
them ' spiritual blessings in heavenly things,' say I, and not ' places' only ; 
and such Adam's were not. And the reason is, because these are all bless- 
ings in Christ, who alone is that heavenly man, the Lord from heaven, 
1 Cor. xv. 47, 48 ; but Adam but an earthly man ; and so Christ alone is 
the founder of spiritual blessings in heavenly things ; and therefore this 
spirit coming from him, the quickening Spirit (as Christ is there termed, in 
opposition to Adam's being but a living soul, ver. 45), is wholly heaven- 
born, is an optic glass, set to the eye to see into things heavenly, which 
Adam's sight fell short of. Spirit here, is the foundation and beginning of 
all those glorious enjoyments of God in the other world, and shall be raised 
up thereto. And in this life the spiritual man hath an aspirement there- 
unto, and could never be satisfied without it. And in this life, where this 
spiritual and heavenly temper completes no degrees, as Adam's primitive 
holiness of nature was, it would raise a man up to infinitely higher propor- 
tions of communion with God and active holiness than Adam's state was 
capable of. But, alas ! our life here is hid with Christ in God, through our 
imperfection and the like. And indeed this very word spirit, — ' That which 
is born of the Spirit is spirit,' — speaks a sublimated work, the most refined 
and most raised work that man's heart in this life is capable of. For the 
extract, the quintessence of things (leaving the gross parts behind them as 
severed), you still call spirits. I need not give you chemical instances. 
Also in the creation, those things which are of the highest rank, strength, 
and excellency, and nearest God himself in their natures, are termed spirits : 

< Who maketh his angels spirits,' Heb. i. 7. — And the substance of his 

own pure nature is set out by this, ' God is a Spirit,' John iv. 24. Yea, 
take an estimate from hell : the height, the quintessence of all wickedness, 
is, as you know, found in the devils ; and how is it expressed ? It is named 
• spiritual wickedness,' Eph. vi. 12. And they are elsewhere termed 
' wicked spirits,' Mat. xii. 45, because the substance of their nature or 
being is spirit, and they are filled with wickedness. But here the wicked- 
ness°they are filled with is further termed spiritual ; that is, it is a wicked- 
ness of the highest kind, which exerciseth itself in opposing and contra- 


dieting things heavenly, as it follows there about things heavenly, which are 
ihe things this spirit (in the text John hi.), is raised unto, and contends 
for, and aspires after ; and therefore as their wickedness is termed spiritual, 
so the nature of this is termed spirit or spiritual, as pursuing after those 
very things heavenly, which their wickedness sets itself against. 

4. These heavenly dispositions have for their seat the spirit of a man. 
This is the immediate subject in which it resides, in which it was chiefly 
and first implanted, and from thence diffused to the whole man, and so is 
justly denominated spirit from its subject, the very spirit, quintessence, and 
centre of the soul : Eph. iv. 22, 23, ' Be renewed in the spirit of your 
minds,' by infusing into it spiritual principles of heavenly light and dis- 
positions. The new man is there said to be put on. And to the same 
purpose speaks the apostle, 1 Thess. v. 23, ' The God of peace sanctify you 
throughout,' or wholly, 'your whole spirit, soul, and body.' Body is the 
exterior part, and soul is the inward part, of senses, affections, &c. But 
spirit is the top, the highest region of the mind, which is capable of a higher 
intuition of things spiritual ; and this is sanctified first and chiefly, and 
therefore first named, and the sanctification hereof is termed spirit. The 
seat of the powerful workings of sin, and of the first suggestion usually 
thereunto, is the lower faculties, which entice and allure, and propound the 
pleasures of themselves to the will and affections ; which, being corrupt, 
and knowing no better, yield, and approve them suitable to the outward 
man ; and therefore it is termed the law of the members. But the work- 
ings of grace are perfectly contrary. The seat of grace and its chief 
dominion is the spirit of the mind, termed therefore ' the inner man,' ' the 
hidden man,' ' the law of the mind ;' which, giving forth laws and impres- 
sions to the outward, rules and commands it. And because the strength that 
must sway the man lies there, therefore it meets with more difficulties than 
the dominion of sin doth, for it hath all the affections to subdue by spiritual 
light and fresh comings in from heaven. 


What it is to hare the heart elevated and suited to all things spiritual, as 


But the last and main thing in this definition to be most attended unto 
is, what it is to have the heart elevated and suited unto all things spiritual, 
as spiritual. 

There are three things to be inquired into for the explanation hereof. 

1. What those things are which are spiritual. 

2. What it is to have the heart suited to these spiritual things. 

8. An account why this should be added, ' To spiritual things as spiri- 

1. What are things spiritual ? It needs not long be insisted on. The 
particulars are become known to us all, if we have hearts unto them : they 
are the things of God, which the Spirit reveals, ' the deep things of God,' 
1 Cor. ii. 10, 14, and Rom. viii. 7. They are things of the Spirit, Rom. 
viii. 5. They are another world or system of things, opposed to things of 
the flesh, which flesh, or corrupt nature, is suited unto, which are mani- 
festly fruits of the flesh, Gal. v. 19, downright sins, or things of this world, 
abused by our lusts, 1 John ii. 16. 

Chap. IV.] in our salvation'. 165 

(1.) First and primarily, God himself and Christ are the chiefest spiri- 
tual things and blessings. They are the first original of all things spiritual, 
and so are the most spiritual, and have all and only true spiritualness in 
them. ' God is a Spirit ;' it is his pure nature so to be, and therefore he 
is to be worshipped in spirit by us. Even as it is said, ' God is holy, 
therefore be ye holy ;' so God is Spirit, therefore be ye spiritual. And 
therefore all things else are spiritual as they refer unto him. As God only 
is good (as Christ says), so God only is Spirit ; and as the sun only is light, 
so God only is the Father of all light that is truly heavenly ; God is the 
measure, the standard of all things spiritual. And thus also Christ, who 
is styled ' The Lord,' is also said to be ' that Spirit' (2 Cor. hi. 17) who 
puts all the spiritualness that is in the gospel into our minds. 

(2.) There are things that are spiritual derivatively from God and Christ, 
which are the things of God, and which are not otherwise, no, nor further 
spiritual, than as they relate unto God and Christ, and partake of them, 
and redound to their glory, who is the measure of them. And of this dis- 
tinction we shall have great use in the sequel ; for in all the benefits be- 
stowed in our salvation, there is no further a spiritualness to be found than 
as God shines in them, and his excellence and glory are illustrious. And 
that, and that alone puts every other thing into the being and rank of 
things spiritual. 

[1.] All blessings, adoption, forgiveness, redemption, fellowship with 
God, and heaven itself, are termed spiritual blessings, Eph. i. 3, ' Blessed 
be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with 
all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ ;' and these blessings 
consist not in houses, lands, &c, but in things heavenly. 

[2.] Thus all graces of the Spirit are also spiritual. Col. i. 9, true saving 
knowledge is styled auvsaig sveu/ust/x^, ' spiritual understanding.' 

[3.] All the immediate duties of God's worship, when God is worshipped 
in spirit in them, are termed spiritual. Prayer, hearing, &c, all are termed 
' spiritual sacrifices,' 1 Pet. ii. 5, which become such, so far as God is 
sanctified and closed withal in them and by them. 

[4.] Every duty of the moral law, as it is directed unto God, is a service 
in spirit, Rom. vii. 6. And the whole moral law, and every particle of it, 
in this right tendency, is spiritual, Rom. vii. 14, ' The law is spiritual.' 

2. What is it to have the heart made suitable to these spiritual things ? 

You all know, by analogy from nature, what it is to have the soul, in the 
powers and faculties of it, suited unto the object of it ; as the eye is suited 
and fitted to colour, and the ear unto sounds. I shall give you some 
philosophical instances which the Scripture makes, Eccles. xi. 7, ' Truly 
the light ' (saith Solomon) < is sweet, and a pleasant thing it is to behold 
the sun.' Here is a heavenly outward object, and the visive or seeing 
faculty, declared suited or fitted one to the other. The apostle Paul also 
(1 Cor. vi. 13) speaking of the present condition of the bodies of men, 'The 
belly ' (says he) ' is for meats, and meats for the belly ; ' that is, they are 
by God suited and fitted one for another in this present state. And consider 
the purpose of his mentioning this. It is to illustrate how in a proportion- 
able manner, and in a spiritual way, even the bodies of men after the 
resurrection, when they shall be made spiritual, 1 Cor. xv., shall then be 
suited unto Christ, so it follows, ver. 14, ' And Goi hath both raised up 
the Lord, and will also raise us up by his own power.' And it is said too, 
in ver. 17, ' He that is joined to the Lord is one spirit.' Now then to 
make up the analogy, as he will suit spiritual senses to spiritual things after 


the resurrection, so he doth suit men's souls and spirits aforehand in this 
life unto the spiritual things manifested in the word, afore the resurrection 
of body and soul into a greater glory. And this the Scriptures also speak 
as expressly to this point of regeneration or grace, as it doth to that other 
point of nature : 1 Cor. ii. 9, ' Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, nor hath 
it entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for 
them that love him.' The things prepared, &c, are manifestly here the 
things of the gospel in this life revealed, and not only those in the world 
to come, as by the context hath been long since observed. And the only 
use at present I make lies in these words, ' Prepared for those that love 
him ;' that is, aforehand suited and fitted by God unto the new creature, or 
unto those into whose hearts he puts his love. And if it be not an allusion 
intended by the apostle, yet it may well be represented by the correspond- 
ency that is between the story of the first creation and the new creature, 
which the apostle intends by those who love God. The apostle in those 
words of his, ' As it is written,' refers us to Isa. lxiv. 4, ' Since the 
beginning of the world, men have not heard, neither perceived by the ear, 
neither hath the eye seen,' &c. Now consult the story of man's first crea- 
tion, to which this is a manifest allusion, and it stood thus. God made 
and prepared a world consisting of, and filled with, variety of creatures, the 
making of which cost him six days' work. There were delicacies of fruits 
for the taste, an entertainment for the eye in all sorts of colours, light, 
ornaments, and tapestry, which heaven and earth affordeth to this day. 
There was a brave world, and richly furnished, as the apostle speaks of it, 
1 Tim. vi. The angels stood by, and wondered all the while for whom all 
this should be prepared, for they had not senses to be affected with them. 
God after all, at the latter end of this his work, brings in man, and sets 
Adam down in the centre of this world ; and lo, he had at the first of his 
creation an eye to see and to be taken with all the beauties God had 
scattered up and down throughout the whole. He had an ear to hear all 
the music which the melodies of birds singing, or the rnurmurings and 
warblings of rivulets, could afford. He had a taste and belly suited to take 
pleasure in all these varieties of fruits, or whatever else God had provided 
as a banquet for him ; insomuch as there was not any one thing God had 
made but he had some sense, inward or outward, to take in a pleasure from 
it, or some faculty in his mind to close with and make use of it. Whence 
it was apparent unto himself and the angels, the spectators, that God had 
first prepared and set out all these for the man, and then created the man, 
in like manner prepared and fitted for all these things. He had an ear and 
an eye (as both the prophet's and apostle's words are) to receive and take 
in what was thus made for him. Thus the apostle tells us it falls out in 
this new creation, God hath been from everlasting contriving and ordaining, 
and in the fulness of time preparing, all those glorious truths and things 
which the apostle (to whom was committed the news and tidings of this 
world to come, Heb. ii. 5) by the Holy Ghost, have given us in their writ- 
ings a full discovery of. And whenever God regenerateth any man, and 
constitutes him a new creature, lo, the man hath a new eye to see, an ear 
to hear, and all sorts of new senses to take in all sorts of spiritual things, 
as the Spirit shall be pleased to reveal them to him. He no sooner opens 
an eye but he finds himself to be come into a new world, and to be 
environed with new objects. Thus they are prepared for him, and he for 
them ; and hence it comes to pass that he hath an eye to see, and an ear 
to hear, and a heart to understand, such things as never from the 

Chap. V.j in our salvation. 107 

beginning of this world entered into the heart of man, no, not of Adam in 
his first creation. Now the principle by which he is enabled to this, is 
called spirit. 

If yon will have another scripture that speaks this suitableness between 
this spiritual man and these ' spiritual things,' look into Rom. viii. 5, ' Those 
that are after the flesh, do mind the things of the flesh ; but they that are 
after the Spirit, the things of the Spirit.' You have here the suitableness 
between spiritual things and a spiritual man illustrated by its contrary, 
namely, the like of a carnal heart towards carnal things, that so all men, 
whether carnal or spiritual, might be equal and just judges out of experience, 
whether they had as yet flesh only, or further, spirit, begun in them ; for 
all mankind have experience what it is to mind, to favour, and find a 
heart suited to things fleshly and outward. We feel every day how our 
bowels work, and our affections are inflamed after things fleshly, as beauty, 
pleasure, &c. Now, says he, descend into your hearts, and be righteous 
judges ; if ye be after the Spirit, if that supernatural frame of heart be in 
you and predominant, you will in like manner be taken with the things of 
the Spirit, for both stand upon like just and equal reason ; for as flesh is 
suited unto things fleshly, so Spirit is suited unto things spiritual, even as 
it is here, John iii., • That which is born of the flesh is flesh,' so ' that which 
is born of the Spirit is spirit.' 


That this suitableness of the mind to spiritual things, is the great distinguish- 
ing character of one that is ' born of the Spirit,' John iii. 5, from others 
who are not so. 

3. I shall now give an account why I put in this restriction, ' a suitableness 
of the heart unto spiritual things, as spiritual.' The truth is, herein lies 
the spirit, or the formal constitution and difference of that which is here 
termed spirit. The meaning whereof is, that spiritual things are to be 
considered barely and merely as they are in themselves and their own 
nature, abstracted from all other considerations and concomitants adherent 
to them, and abstracted from such benefits as are accidental, external, and 
foreign to them. Spiritual things may indeed be viewed as wrapt up in 
worldly conveniences, the avoidance of punishment, or the obtaining some- 
thing which a man apprehends good to him, which occurs by them or with 
them. But spiritual things, as spiritual, are the things themselves, which 
are represented in their own real nature, in their native hue and proper 
colours to a spiritual man. 

(1.) In other things, the formal reason of any objects is that which puts the 
difference between sciences and arts, yea, and the senses. Bodies natural 
are the subjects of a multitude of arts and sciences ; but take it as a natural 
body, and simply so considered, it is the proper subject of philosophy, and 
makes an essential difference between that and other knowledge. So it is 
here ; spiritual things are the proper objects of that true, genuine, heaven- 
born spirit, begotten by regeneration. 

(2.) The apostle is my warrant for putting in this distinction; for he sets 
this fatal and eternal difference between a natural man and a spiritual man : 
1 Cor. ii. 14, 15, ' But the natural man receiveth not the things of the 
Spirit of God : for they are foolishness unto him : neither can he know 


them, because they are spiritually discerned. But he that is spiritual judg- 
eth all things, yet he himself is judged of no man.' To say, ' because they 
are spiritually discerned,' and to give this as the reason why a natural man 
cannot therefore receive them, is all one as to say, that if they be rightly 
discerned, they must be discerned in their spirituality ; that is, as they are in 
themselves spiritual, as spiritual. Thus the soul, whilst in the body, cannot 
see or discern the angels that daily attend us, nor the devils that hourly 
tempt us. "Why ? Because they are spirits, and are spiritually to be dis- 
cerned, and so can be viewed only by naked spirits like themselves. They 
may be seen if they will thicken and condensate the air, or take a shape, 
enclose themselves in a body : but still as spirits, and in their own sub- 
stance and nature, they are discerned by none but those of their kind. And 
(as he here speaks of a spiritual man, ver. 15) they can see all we do, but 
themselves are not discerned by us ; we see not their motion nor their act- 
ings. I know this similitude, as none other, will hold in all ; for our soul, 
stripped of our flesh, would thus see angels ; but not so an unregenerate 
man, he would not discern spiritual things though he were stripped of flesh, 
if he was not also spiritualised. And by this natural man is not barely 
understood a sensual man, sensual for lusts and bodily pleasures, but a 
man endowed with the greatest gifts of knowledge and wisdom, such as 
were the scribes and pharisees, and the disputers of this world, 1 Cor. i. 
7, 8, 20. And for the discerning of these things spiritually, a man must 
not simply have the Spirit of God to reveal them objectively (vers. 10-12), 
but he must subjectively be made by that Spirit a spiritual man, and have 
spiritual senses given him, else, though the Spirit should reveal them, he 
could not receive them. ' The natural man receives not the things of the 
Spirit of God ; ' for quicquid recipitur, recipitur ad modioli recipientis. As 
a blind eye receives not the light of the sun, ' neither can he know them' ; 
which words speak an impotency or an incapacity in the subject ; for there 
is a disproportion between the objects, take them in their spiritual nature, 
and the subject. 'For,' says he, 'they are spiritually discerned;' and 
therefore the man must be made spiritual, or he cannot take them in ; as 
a beast must be made rational, ere he can understand or take in the things 
of a man. That look, as now this natural body of ours (as, 1 Cor. xv., the 
apostle calls it), cannot discern an angel or spirit, as he is a spirit ; but 
when God shall make his natural body a spiritual body (which how he will 
do it, we know not), then we shall see angels and spirits, even as we are 
seen of them ; but a spiritual body it must be made first. So it is, a man 
must be spiritual before he can see spiritual things. 

(3.) A third ground why I say that a spiritual man must discern spiritual 
things as spiritual, is, because he otherwise receives not the things at all, 
which the apostle hints. This is a great truth, that if the soul of a man 
does not arrive at, and close with, and embrace the things themselves, as 
they are in themselves and in their own nature, it knows them not, it re- 
ceives them not at all ; but only ideas and notions, shadows and clouds, 
instead of them. God will be known as God, and glorified as God (Bom. 
i. 21), or he accounts it no knowledge. Then we know and affect things 
as they are, when our knowledge and affections towards them are such as 
the nature of the things requires. If the knowledge of Christ in my heart 
be not answerable, similar to what is in the thing itself, I do not know it ; 
as I am not said to know a man, if I know him but by hearsay, or have 
peen but his picture. And therefore the apostle distinguisheth as I do : 
Kph. iv. 21, 'If you have been taught as the truth is in Jesus ;' that is, 


to know Christ in himself, and the truths ahout him, which are heams of 
him, as they are in their true and naked hue. Thus also affections to any 
thing or person is not true love, or a genuine affection, if it bo not suited 
and carried out to the thing and the person itself; you call it harlotry love 
else ; lust, not love. And therefore, of necessity, if our knowledge of 
spiritual things he true, and such as it ought to be, if our affections unto 
them be genuine, our hearts must be suited to the thing as spiritual. Yea, 
otherwise the things, whatever they are in themselves, do become to us but 
1 things of the flesh,' as the law was to the carnal Jew, and all spiritual 
privileges are to an unregenerate professor. 

4. This is the great difference or constitutive distinction of men regene- 
rate from the unregenerate, though never so much enlightened, elevated to 
the tasting of the powers of the world to come. \Those that are truly re- 
newed are made spirit, or spiritual in all things ; so not the other." Al- 
though raised up and elevated to be exercised about things spiritual, yet 
not about the spirituality of the things, and to be carried out to them as 
such. This will appear in the particulars of the work of grace all along. 
There is a carnality about spiritual objects, else the apostle would never 
have termed the Corinthians carnal, in comparison of other Christians, and 
not spiritual, 1 Cor. hi. 1. Now that which was in a great measure re- 
maining in them, is predominantly in temporary believers. It is in them 
as that which constitutes their estate, without any genuine principle of 
spirit at all. It is nowhere said of any temporary believer, or person that 
fell away, that he was born again, nor is it anywhere said of any such that 
they are spiritual men, or begotten of the Spirit. 

The main use I intend is of examination of our estates, whether we are 
savingly regenerate or not ? Consider what the frame, the posture, the 
vergency, your spirits are of unto things that are spiritual, as spiritual. I 
speak now only unto men that are or have been some way or other affected 
with things spiritual ; for as for such as are not, but live wholly in things 
earthly and sensual, such need not a jury to pass upon them to condemn 
them. Towards our help in this examination, let us take these two things. 

1. Take instances of several particulars of spiritual things, and search- 
ing out wherein the spiritualness of them lies, bring them and your hearts 
together, to put you upon considering how your hearts and they agree and 
suit each other. 

(1.) Learn to understand in your own hearts what these two things 
mean, and what a vast difference is between them. 1. To have heavenly 
natural dispositions and inclination suiting the heart to things spiritual, as 
spiritual ; and, 2d, To have accidental and forced elevations or stirrings of 
heart towards things spiritual, and those but upon considerations that are 
but accidental to the things, or are but appurtenances of them, attendants 
and hang-byes to them, and are not of the nature of the things themselves. 

You will ask me, What do you account but accidental affections in men's 
hearts to things spiritual ; and what is it that is accidental in the things 
themselves ? 

[1.] That is but an accidental affection in the heart itself, which is 
forced and strained in respect of what the whole stream of thy heart other- 
wise doth naturally carry thee forth unto ; whereas that which is born of 
the flesh doth wholly and naturally mind and savour nothing but what is 
earthly, worldly, &c, Rom. viii. 5, and the whole propension and pondus 
thereof would of itself for ever run that way ; yet so as look, as streams 
that naturally run but one way, yet are capable of a turn, and to be diverted 


a contrary way by winds, or stoppage, or the overflowings of waters, &c, 
without having a new and natural spring or fountain to feed and carry it 
on that contrary current : so the natural mind may sometime flow in an- 
other current than that in which its own inclinations carry it. But now the 
apostle Peter, speaking of the hearts of men regenerate, expresseth it thus, 
1 Pet. v. 2 : that what they did was ' not out of constraint, but willingly, 
and out of a ready mind.' The great and predominant principle in us is 
self-love ; it is the spirit, the quintessence, of original sin. Now this spring 
or fountain of all lusts in us naturally cuts forth a channel to itself only 
towards things earthly ; and the poise of it (as it is the predominant prin- 
ciple in man's nature, as by nature it is) doth lie clean another way than 
to fall in at all with any of the things which are spiritual, or to have any- 
thing to do with them ; but it secretly and closely enjoys itself in cleaving 
and adhering unto things earthly and sinful ; yet so as if it be stormed 
with the noise and conviction of the things of the other world, as with what 
is the dreadful consequent of sin, viz., wrath and destruction, and of what 
is the deliverance out of it, even to leave sin, to seek after pardon, &c, the 
enlightenings of these things coming powerfully in upon self-love in men, 
that other natural stream and current to things earthly may be stopped, 
yea, and (as is said of Jordan) turned backwards, and the affections run 
that way ; and yet all this be but accidental and violent, in respect unto 
the natural tendency thereof, which remains still one and the same. 

[2.] There are answerably also accidental or consequential respects or 
considerations that are but appendixes to things which in themselves are 
the most spiritual, which are foreign and extrinsecal to the things, and yet 
are revealed in the word together with those things, with the apprehension 
of which a natural man, that hath nothing in him but only self-love, may 
be stirred, moved, and affected. As take sin for one instance : there is the evil 
of sin as sin ; that is, the spiritual evil in it as spiritual, and as it is con- 
trary to God ; and there is the wrath of God, &c, which is the consequent 
of sin, that is an accidental evil to it, as it is sin. As there is the charcoal 
in its foulness, and there is the fire in the coal, likewise there is Christ's 
righteousness as it is a satisfaction to God for sin, and the glorious way of 
saving sinners by it, above all ways else, this is the spiritualness of it ; and 
there is the freedom from that wrath thereby ; the one is the thing in itself, 
the other is the consequent or accidental appendix of it. Now (you know) 
like will still find out its like, suit and consort with it. Hence my exhor- 
tation is, that you would, in searching yourselves, narrowly observe what 
your spirit doth match withal ; that is, what it is in spiritual things which 
your hearts are taken with in them, whether with what is accidental chiefly, 
or chiefly with what is truly spiritual. The apostle hath an expression, 
1 Cor. ii. 13, which may allusively help me to convey my meaning, ' com- 
paring' (saith he) ' spiritual things with spiritual.' He speaks there indeed 
of the delivery of spiritual things to be preached of by us ; and it is as if 
he had said (comparing the words afore and these together), if jon be to 
make orations about things civil, politic, scholastical, then use all your 
flowers of rhetoric and art to set them out with ; for fleshly worldly matters 
are best dressed up in clothings and ornaments that are suitable to them ; 
but if you be to make sermons, take and seek such words and expressions 
as may be savoury and spiritual, and so suited to the matter. In like man- 
ner (say I, in allusion to it as to the point in hand), if you be to examine 
your hearts, compare spiritual things with spiritual, or else accidental with 
accidental; lay tilings of a sort together; that is, observe what kind <>! 

Chap. V.J in our salvation. 171 

affections in thy heart are stirred, and to what sort or kind of things, and 
upon what considerations. If, therefore, thy case be such, that only 
transient and accidental affections are in thy heart (accidental I say to the 
natural whole current of thy heart), finding out and consorting with the 
like accidental considerations in things spiritual; here is no genuine true 
spiritual regeneration, here are but plainly two bastards married, two slips 
of each family, accidental affections, to accidentals in things spiritual; and 
their brood will be answerable, they will not inherit with the sons of the 
free woman, that is, spirit here. But, on the contrary, if there be a new 
spring and fountain set open in thy heart, that works forth itself a natural 
current and channel contrary to that other, whose poise was to each,* which 
doth withal lind out that in spiritual things which are truly spiritual, suits 
and complies with the things themselves as in themselves, and pours out 
its streams upon them and runs into them, here is a noble match between 
two offsprings of two heaven-born families, which will never be parted, but, 
as a noble plant, will bring forth fruit unto God, and unto everlasting life. 

Another consideration I would premise, as both useful to prevent a mis- 
take in examination of ourselves hereby, and which also ariseth from, and 
is the natural corollary of this part of my definition, ' suiting the heart to 
spiritual things.' The premise is this, that the spiritualness of our affect- 
ing of spiritual things lies not in a total opposition or exclusion of what 
suiteth self-love in us, or aiming at our own good ; but if it be rightly 
stated, it takes it in the most naturally that can be. Some good souls, 
when they hear of such doctrines as these, that spiritual things are to be 
affected for themselves, and as spiritual, have presently made this inter- 
pretation of it, that if the heart be truly spiritual, then it must affect them 
in opposition to themselves altogether, and to their own good : and that, 
therefore, they must wholly renounce and cashier all thoughts of a man's 
self therein, thinking that if they at all intermix them, they do unspiritualise 
all the rest. 

Or when they hear that there is an accidental goodness in spiritual things, 
which will take self-love in a carnal heart, they then presently judge that 
therefore true spiritualness lies in this, in having no affection of self-love 
working or stirring at all to anything in things spiritual. These are both 
mistakes : and the very terms of this latter part of the definition I have 
given, duly understood, clears and states this great case, and is preventive 
of these mistakes. Mark it : it suiteth the heart unto the things ; now if the 
heart be made suitable to the very things themselves, it is certain that a 
man must and doth at once affect both the things for themselves, and for 
his own good also. For why ? Let the thing be the most spiritual that 
ever were revealed, wherein doth a man's own good lie, but in the enjoy- 
ment of what is comfortable to him, and which he most desires ? And 
what is it that is most comfortable, and yields most content to any man, 
but the things that are suited to him, and he unto them ? If, therefore, 
the being and end of grace lie in this, to suit the mind to spiritual things 
themselves, and for themselves, then it must needs most happily fall out 
and come to pass, that at once in affecting the things in themselves, the 
believer pursues his own good and happiness. 

The general truth of this assertion, that men's comforts, and so that 

which they account their chiefest good, do lie in the suitableness or frame 

of their minds as it stands unto the things, is so evident in experience, as 

I need not insist on it. What is the reason that trahit sua quemque rohiptas, 

* Qu. 'earth "?— Ed. 


one man is pleased with one thing, another with other things ? It lies in 
the several humours and suitableness of dispositions to such or such things. 
You use to say, that which is one man's heaven is another man's hell ; what 
otherwise is the reason that carnal men mind the things of the flesh, or 
earthly things, naturally, but because they are suited to them ? Else they 
have a light within them which tells them they are not the best things. 
You see in nature it is not every stone, though good and precious, that will 
draw iron after it, or unto which iron will greedily run or clasp with, but 
with the loadstone it will ; and again, no other metal but that will close 
with a loadstone. What is the reason ? There is a suitableness. Now 
then, take a carnal heart, and change the inward radical disposition of it, 
make and render it suitable to God, and Christ, and all other spiritual 
things as they are in themselves (and the power and efficacy of saving 
grace must lie in this, or differs not from flesh), and instantly that soul is 
taught, and hath an instinct for its own good, and greedily and naturally 
(according to the measure of grace given) runs out unto and after these 
spiritual things as spiritual, and placeth its happiness and good in them, 
as truly as ever it did in the other. 

You will say, wherein then is the difference between a carnal man's 
affecting these things, and a spiritual man's doing so ? For it is out of 
self-love in both. 

I answer, out of the principles already delivered. 

1. That the fundamental and original diflerence lies not in this, as if that 
were a carnal heart, that, with respect to its own good, or with love to itself, 
did affect spiritual things ; and on the contrary, he only were truly a spiritual 
man that did not at all out of self-love affect them. No, God forbid ; but 
that which puts the difference is, what that goodness is, which in spiritual 
things the heart of a man doth thus affect, and find his good to lie in. If 
it is only that which is the accident of all goodness, and but the consequent 
of the other, as ease of conscience, freedom from wrath, judgment, &c, 
and the man not affected with the things as in themselves, there being no 
suitableness at all to the things if they could be nakedly represented to him, 
and in their spiritual hue ; this heart is a carnal heart, and thou that wearest 
it art not a spiritual, but a mere outward and accidental Christian ; for, as 
a man affects, so he is. The usual comparison I give to express the diffe- 
rence between these two is this : take two men, whereof the one is in per- 
fect health and vigour, and as hungry as Esau was when he came out of 
the field, and take another who is heart-sick; set meat or drink before 
these two, the one falls to eat it (and that as it is meat) out of appetite 
and suitableness to the thing in itself ; for God hath ordained ' the belly 
for meats, and meats for the belly.' The other's stomach nauseates the 
thing simply in itself considered, and the native scent overcomes him. But 
yet rather than he will die, he will take down something, and yet by his 
good will he takes that only when it is so sauced as the natural scent is not 
discerned. So it is here. If God, and Christ, and his righteousness, and 
the graces of his Spirit, could be represented in their native naked hue, a 
natural man could not receive them, as the apostle speaks ; but take them 
as dipped and sauced with ease of conscience, hopes of freedom from wrath, 
&c, carnal men take them down. In a word, they make use of them as 
physic, not as meat. Here, in this case, a man affects not the thing, hath 
no mind or suitableness to the thing itself, but to the consequent of it, and 
a mere accident belonging to it, which is freedom from pains, &c. 

2. Another difference is, where only thus the accidental goodness of 

Chap. V. in our salvation. 173 

spiritual things affects a man, there is self only, or love to a man's self only, 
that is the root of such affections ; yea, and such a carnal self as of itself 
would pour out its affections to other things much rather, to which only it 
hath an inbred suitableness. The whole heart of itself would run that way, 
and no other, by its good will. But being overpowered by the power of 
the world to come, there is a stop put to such affections, and the current of 
them turned another way. But, take a spiritual man, who is in his inward 
man suited to things spiritual, and spiritually naturalized, or naturally 
spiritualized to them, and though the accidental considerations might have 
first moved him (for, alas, at first a man hath no other principle but self- 
love to be wooed and courted), and in their rank lawfully continue still ; 
yet he now, being come unto them, and himself spiritualised, he closeth 
with the things themselves as in themselves, and as best and most excel- 
lent, Phil. i. 10. He finds so much in the things themselves, that he 
wisheth no greater good, yea, no other good, than what ariseth from the 
things, and from communion with them and enjoyment of them. He finds 
his good lies in them, which (as was said) ariseth out of a suitableness. So 
that now the state of the case is not whether thou affectest them out of self- 
love or for thine own good, yea or no, but whether the things themselves 
have been made suitable to that inward man, and so withal unto that self in 
thee. The root of all that which we call hypocrisy, or counterfeit grace, 
though* wrought by the Spirit, doth lie in this defect, the man hath not a 
heart to the things, but chiefly to the appurtenances of them, and so is said 
in Scripture to have ' a heart and a heart,'! and to be a double-minded 
man, because he pursues not the things for themselves, but for what ac- 
companies them, when all the while, as to the things themselves, he hath 
a heart against them, if they were represented in their true spiritualness. 
And this is the true meaning of that phrase ; for otherwise it were far more 
proper to say of a regenerate man, that he hath had a heart and a heart in 
him, for he hath really two principles, flesh and spirit : two men, two 
springs and fountains in him ; of flesh, suited to things fleshly ; of spirit, 
suited to things spiritual. But yet because his heart is truly suited unto 
these spirituals, therefore he is said to affect them with his whole heart, 
and not to have ' a heart and a heart.' But the other in their most over- 
flowing affections, that seem as a land-flood to carry the whole stream that 
way, as in the people's hearts when the law was given, ' We will ' (say 
they) ' obey the voice of the Lord.' ' Oh ' (says God), ' that there were 
such a heart in them ! ' 

As a corollary from what hath been spoken, I shall a little further enlarge 
on this question, whether a regenerate man, as such, may and doth affect 
spiritual things for his own good, and how far ? Briefly, 

1. Take self-love, as it is a natural principle, and annexed to being or 
entity itself, if grace will have a subject to reside in, it must have this for 
part of it, for it is the adjunct of being. If you think to spiritualise your 
affections so far as nothing of love to yourselves should remain, then you 
must destroy the subject of those affections. If you cut off this nail en- 
tirely, you cut off the finger too. Pare it you may, and must, as to the 
inordinacy of it ; thus to the captive woman taken to wife was done by the 
law, Deut. xxi. 11, 12. 

2. If grace sanctifies us throughout, and every faculty and principle in 
us, 1 Thes. v. 23, then it sanctifies self-love in us ; for of all things in us 
it is most a part in ourselves. And if there be a sanctified self-love, then 

* Q.n. 'not'? — Ed. -J- 1 Ohron. xii 33. Marginal rendering. — Ed. 


part even of our holiness must lie in loving ourselves. But then withal 
observe, that this sanctification of self-love is eminently seen in this, that 
the heart being made spiritual, and suitable to spiritual things, it is enabled 
and made so truly happy, as to find its own greatest good in those things, 
and is carried forth towards them with the greatest contentment to itself. 
And so it comes to pass that when a man's soul is perfectly sanctified, he 
loves these spiritual things with a stronger love to himself, than any carnal 
man can do, or ever did, carnal things. And hence these two make but 
one stream : I at once love myself, and spiritual things themselves, and all 
comes to be reconciled by this, that the heart is made suitable to them. 
Yea, upon this ground I will go yet higher. The more I judge God, Christ, 
and all other spiritual things, to be the best and chiefest good for my soul 
(and this when considered in the highest spiritualness that can be supposed 
to be revealed by the Spirit, and discerned and apprehended by me), when 
they rise up in the most spiritual spirituality, the Holy Ghost himself can 
or doth represent them, then for my soul to be most able to say, ' These 
are the best for me,' and to have spiritual affections rise up as these other 
apprehensions of the spirituality of the things do rise, this argues still that 
my heart hath the greater degree of grace. And the reason of it is clear 
from this principle, that grace suits the soul to spiritual things ; and there- 
fore those actings of my heart argue it still to be the more spiritual, as 
being so suited that still I find my highest good to lie in the highest and 
utmost spiritualness of them ; even as the more a man's stomach affecteth 
and relisheth meat, the stronger meats, yea, and the more sweetness it 
finds therein, the better stomach it is. David's heart hath in a great de- 
gree decided this in few words : Ps. lxxiii. 28, ' It is good for me to draw 
near to God.' He found communion with him, out of suitableness, to be 
his greatest good. 


How ice may discern, value, and love spiritual things, purely as spiritual, and 
yet view them as blessbvjs to us; and regard and affect our own interest and 
benefit in them. 

If any do yet understand me so as to have this objection still in their 
thoughts (putting it by way of supposition), that if any man should love 
spiritual things as spiritual, chiefly for his own good, would not this be 
hypocrisy, and he be a carnal man ? 

I answer, Yes. And even this will also follow from that principle I have 
insisted upon. For if a man's heart be carried out suitably to the things, 
that is to God and Christ, See., as they are in themselves, then he cannot 
but prize, adore, value, and love them above himself. For if his heart be 
not suited to the things, as they are proportionably in their own worth, his 
knowledge and love of them is not such as the things require, and so are 
not suited to them. And (as I said) it is a false and a counterfeit know- 
ledge of, and affection to them, as was afore observed, so that it is a con- 
tradiction to say a man's heart is suited to the things, and to say that he 
affects them as such chiefly for himself. For if he knows God as God or 
Christ, as the truth is in Jesus, then (as John says in another case) he finds 
these to be infinitely greater than himself, and himself to be but as a mote 
flying in the beams of the sun. And if he did not accordingly prize and 

Chap. VI.] in our salvation. 175 

afoot them and their glory, his affections would not bo suitable to these 
things ; therefore self falls down, and gives up itself most to exalt the things 
above itself, when it finds them most suitable to it. Yet still notwith- 
standing, this on the other side falls on with the highest consistency, that 
a man never loves himself more, yea, and never finds he doth it more, than 
when he finds he loves them above himself, and not for himself chiefly. 

If you ask me how far these two may stand together ? I answer, they 
are consistent in a due subordination of self unto God, and the things of 
God. All men must acknowledge this, that true grace is the image of God's 
holiness, Col. iii. 10. And it so long continues to be his image, as it keeps 
a due and answerable proportion unto that holiness that is in himself, the 
great and only architype and master-pattern of all true holiness. Therefore 
it is consistent with so loving God and ourselves, in such a subordination 
as God loveth himself and us. Now i" we consider God, he as God loves 
himself above all, and works all things for his own glory, and therein lies 
his holiness in choosing his elect unto salvation, for he did it for his own 
glory : Eph. i. 5, 6, ' Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children 
by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will, to the 
praise and glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the 
beloved.' And yet everywhere the Scripture also doth ascribe God's elect- 
ing us and redeeming us to his infinite love borne unto our persons (' God so 
loved the world,' &c.) ; and that not comparatively only as to others (' Esau 
have I hated'), but simply as he bore an affection to our persons : Deut. x. 
15, ' Only the Lord thy God had a delight in thy fathers to love them.' 
You see then, that in God's heart our salvation and his own glory, love to 
himself above all, and infinitely above any respect to us, had a great place, 
and yet a true, real, and special love and affection borne unto us, did sweetly 
meet together and run in one channel subordinately to the other. And this 
hath been to many a great help and inducement to their believing God's 
real intention and heartiness to save sinners and themselves, that it is a 
design which falls in with the utmost manifestation of his own glory. Yea, 
and God in effecting it, or bringing it about, hath contrived all the means 
of salvation, so as to represent at once to us an intermixture of transcendent 
love to us, and a prerogative respect of his own glory. Look one way, and 
you think he loved us as if he regarded nothing else ; look on the other 
side, and the glory of his grace doth so appear that we seem to be forgotten, 
and God's glory alone shines in it. Are these two then so reconciled in 
God's heart, love to us and himself? Come we now then to the heart of a 
man saved and regenerated spiritually, and certainly they may consist also 
there. And the ' saving faith' of both these respects and affections had by 
God to his own glory, to us, and our salvation, may also work both ways 
in our hearts. And, indeed, God in commanding us to love him above all 
things, yea ourselves, hath withal given leave to us to love ourselves, in so 
doing, in an answerableness to his own loving us, whilst yet he aimed so 
eminently at his own glory as if nothing concerning us had moved him. 
For grace in us is the image of what is in himself. And all this (say I 
still) may justly be enforced by this assertion, that grace in the heart is a 
principle that elevates and suits the soul unto the spiritualness of things 
spiritual. Now the glory of God above our salvation, being the most 
spiritual of spiritual things (it is spiritual in summo gradu), then if the 
heart be suited to the thing, it must in the end exalt and set this up, as it 
is in this its spiritualness, and so set it in this its high throne above itself; 
it were not grace else, nor suited to this object. And because it is a prin- 


ciple that suits the heart thereto, therefore it withal must have the greatest 
delight when it finds it can do so, therefore the greater happiness consists 
therein, and therefore the heliever enjoys his own good most in being so 
affected. Grace is the strongest creature and principle that ever God did, 
or shall make. It comes upon the heart when it is an utter stranger unto 
God, and when it is full of self-love, and is as contrary to God as any one 
thing can be to another ; and yet it comes and begets an instinct in that 
soul to make its own highest good to lie in the good and happiness of that 
God aimed at and delighted in above its own. I will end this. This lovo 
to God ariseth not out of self-love (though it is so in a carnal man) but it 
may more properly be said to be joined with it, self-love to take it into 

3. When we say that spirit here, in John iii. 6, is a suiting the heart to 
spiritual things themselves, the meaning is not that the closing with God 
himself, and with the person of Christ abstractly considered, is all and the 
whole of true spiritualncss, or which are the only objects of a spiritual 
heart ; but there are many benefits by Christ, and that come within the 
soul's cleaving to God, which are spiritual also, and so are truly and spiri- 
tually the objects of the affections of a regenerate man as spiritual. This 
I add, to prevent a mistake also. 

Many, when they hear of such a doctrine as this, that spiritual things 
are to be affected as spiritual, take it in thus, that therefore all affections 
to anything but to God, and to the person of Christ, simply for themselves, 
and not at all for any benefit or blessing with them, are affections of a heart 
that is carnal. 

It is true indeed that those before-mentioned dispositions are in a spiri- 
tual heart raised up unto an intense degree (for these only are spirituals 
in summo gradu, as we use to speak of other things, as of heat in fire, &c), 
yet withal the benefits that flow from adhesion to the persons of God and 
Christ, are in their degree spiritual also. Thus you have it expressly pro- 
nounced, Eph. i. 3, ' Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus 
Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places 
in Christ.' Here you have mentioned the persons of God the author, and 
of Christ the conveyer, distinguished from the blessings ; and yet the bless- 
ings themselves are termed spiritual, as well as God and Christ elsewhere 
are. And adoption (ver. 5), and redemption through his blood, and forgive- 
ness of sins through the riches of his grace (ver. 7) are ranged among the 
number of them. So that even in these blessings themselves there is a 
spiritualness to be found, and spiritual considerations about them, for which 
a regenerate heart spiritually affects them, and seeks them. The eye that 
loves to behold the sun's light, and to behold the beams of the sun, doth 
certainly love the sun itself, the fountain ; for those beams are high and 
heavenly, as well as the sun itself is a heavenly body. And thus it is with 
respect to all spiritual blessings. Justifying faith, which is as spiritual a 
grace as any, hath not immediately the person of Christ in its eye, abstracted 
from his righteousness or forgiveness, but as arrayed with them. There is 
therefore a spiritualness in Christ's righteousness to be found, for which we 
must value it, and to close with it as truly spiritualness, as to close imme- 
diately with the person of Christ. Paul desires, Philip, iii. 9, ' to be found 
in Christ, not having his own righteousness,' &c. So is it in all graces, they 
are spiritual things. Only I add this, that all these are spiritual, but deri- 
vatively, and as they relate to God and Christ, and unto their glory. If 
you cut them off from that relation, and value not their worth, as in that 

Chap. VI.] in our salvation. 177 

relation they lose their spiritualness. As the sun's beams have a glory in 
them, why ? Because they are beams of the sun, as rooted in it, flowing 
from it ; which if you would cut off, they would lose. Now carnal hearts, 
in valuing and affecting these benefits, cut them off from God and Christ. 
A dark cloud of self interposes, and they do not most value them on the 
account of their relation to the persons of God and Christ. 

This also is farther to be considered, that many believers, especially when 
young in grace, may not have those principles and gracious dispositions, so 
far stirred and acted (although the things are in them) as to be able emi- 
nently to discern that high suitableness to God and Christ in its true spiri- 
tuality, with difference from what is from carnal self. That is, they may not 
presently find that love to the things themselves for themselves, budding 
and shooting up so as to overtop that other remaining principle of regard 
unto their own selves. 

(1.) It is therefore to be considered, that believers at first, having carnal 
self stirred towards spiritual things (even as temporary believers have), as 
well as spiritual self, they are in respect of this mixture termed carnal rather 
than spiritual, because that principle is, if not predominant in acting, yet 
bo vigorously, and perhaps more sensibly, acting in them than the spiritual 
part, purely as such, is found to be. When Paul wrote to that church at 
Corinth, he wrote to saints, yet professeth he wrote not to them as to spiri- 
tual, but as to carnal, 1 Cor. iii. 1 ; that is, as to babes in Christ, whose 
workings are to sense more carnal than spiritual, though they afterward do 
grow up to be more spiritual. Thus in the first birth a child, first lives the 
life of a plant, then of a beast or sensitive creature, and last of all springs 
up reason ; and yet the reasonable soul was the root of all these, and so 
was the principle of them there from the first. So it is in the new birth 
often. Therefore let none be discouraged though the present actings of 
their spirit have been low, and not risen up eminently above carnal self (as 
to their sense) ; for true grace or spirit may be in them carried out with the 
mixture of the other, and that genuinely (as to the thing itself) unto what 
is spiritual. 

(2.) In the main and whole ordinary course of a Christian, these two 
streams run together in one channel, and have no occasion of parting ; but 
they find that loving their own selves, and their affecting spiritual things for 
themselves, do concur, insomuch as whether they affect themselves most, 
out of love to themselves, or most affect the things themselves, they cannot 
discern : as when all the bells strike at once, it is hard to discern distinctly 
the sound of the loudest above the rest. So as although a man's heart 
truly affects the things most, yet so much of self, carnal self, is mingled 
with it, that which is most eminent is not perceived. Only this they find, 
that their affections are still carried on one way or other to things that are 
spiritual ; and in this case the constancy of the stream (though at some 
passage of a man's life more shallow than at another) is that which doth 
best evidence the Holy Ghost to be the spring of all, and that a fountain 
of spiritualness is sprung up in that heart, which feeds it thus to eternal 
life. The truest issue therefore which, in examining ourselves, we are to 
bring our souls unto, is ultimately to search, taking the help of those cau- 
tions given along with us, and not to rest satisfied till we have found some 
dispositions in our souls naturally matching with, and suited unto, what is 
spiritually good in things that are spiritual. And although in the mean- 
while, till this is some way discerned, the soul may support itself with the 
thoughts that those affections that have been drawn forth to things spiritual 

VOLr. VI. M 


revealed in the word, perhaps in present sense, only out of self-love, may 
yet in the issue prove to have true strains of spiritualness running along 
■with them. But yet still thou canst not have an undoubted or infallible 
evidence of thy regeneration, till thou fmdest thy heart carried forth to and 
closing with what is truly spiritual in those blessings. 


That the blessings which we have by Christ are purely spiritual, proved by an 
enumeration of them. — How a spiritual heart considers and affects them in 
their pure spintuality. 

I come now to reduce this inquisition into particular instances ; that is, 
to view over some things spiritual, and to single forth in them what is truly 
spiritual, severed from what is accidental, and so to bring them and your 
hearts together, and to see how they will and do match and agree. 

I will begin first with such things as may seem less spiritual, because 
suited unto what is in ourselves. Such are the benefits that come by 
Christ. Now, in each of these there is something that is purely and truly 
spiritual, towards which for the heart to be suitably earned forth, argues 
spiritualness in the heart. Now, to clear our understandings in this, take 
this for a true and certain general rule, that all the spiritualness that is in 
every such spiritual benefit consists in its relation and reference unto God 
himself, who is that great Spirit, and the fountain and measure of whatever 
is spiritual. Neither grace, nor any spiritual benefit, is further spiritual 
than as it is a tenant of his, and holds of him ; and both issues and flows 
from him, and returns again unto him, as redounding to his glory. So as 
it is the shine, the lustre, the reflection of his glory on these blessings, 
some way or other, which alone makes them spiritual, as they are stream- 
ings down of God upon us, and are redounds and reverberations of glory 
back again to him ; which is more eminent in those blessings, and their 
being benefits unto us. And without this aspect unto and conjunction 
with God, they, if simply considered as benefits, would lose their spiritual- 
ness. So as although, because they are truly benefits, and for our good, 
and do make us happy, therefore self-love is admitted to partake of, yea, 
and to embrace them, for its own good (for they were also ordained there- 
to), yet unless that self-love be taken with what is of God, and tends unto 
God in them, so as really to find its own good to lie therein, it would not 
be spiritual love. 

And the truth of this notion (that you may not think it a mere imagina- 
tion) discovers itself in things that are human, and in the professions of 
men, concerning things that are found amongst men. 

1. A great king, in bestowing his benefits, puts the worth of them upon 
what is from himself, and redounds to himself. That story of Alexander 
illustrates it. You know the great king Alexander, when he thought fit to 
give a gift, he professes to give as a king, and so gave a city as a reward 
for a mean service ; justifying it thus, ' I give as a king' (as the scripture 
phrase also is, 2 Sam. xxiv. 23), as becomes a king to give, and not as 
becomes the man to receive. So as in that gift or benefit there shined 
more of honour and glory to Alexander, than there did of good and benefit 
to the person on whom it was bestowed. The same strain was in Ahasuerus, 
1 Thus shall it be done to the man whom the king delighteth to honour.' 

Chap. VII. J in our salvation. 179 

Thus it is in the spiritual benefits we have from God ; God hath set them 
out unto us infinitely more by what is in them of benefit to us, and would 
have us accordingly entertain and embrace them ; and when the heart is 
answerably thus allected, then it is spiritual. 

2. The heart of an ingenuous man, though carnal, may understand how 
it is in this respect with a regenerate man's heart, so as to be convinced of 
it by what they feci, at least often pretend unto, in human affections. If 
a person be far your superior, or a friend very dear, and you are either 
suitors to him for a gift, or place, by reason of which you shall be near to 
him ; or if you be to return thanks and obligations, or if you have a token 
given in remembrance of a near friend, your hearts prompt you, or your 
wits, at least, counterfeit such strains as these, Non tarn donn (lector) quam 
abs te dato, I rejoice not so much in the gift, as because it is by so noble a 
hand and so noble a mind. And what you must profess to regard is, that 
he who gave it would cast an eye upon you, or that you might come thereby 
to have a nearer approximation to him. For instance, will you take one 
of Paul's realities (I must not term them compliments) in Phil. iv. 14, 17. 
He celebrates and magnifies their gift (ver. 14—16) more than any, from 
any church ; and concludes (ver. 17), ' This I speak, not that I desire a 
gift, but that fruit may redound to your account.' He considered the 
benefit as it was to himself apart, and also as in its tendency it redounded 
unto the givers again, whom he valued. Thus also you value a medal, or 
a piece of gold, or the picture of a friend, not by its worth or weight, but 
as it relates to him, a thousand times above the value of it in itself. Now 
bring but the analogy of such things as these on to God, and his benefits 
or graces bestowed on you, and judge righteous judgment ; and ask your 
hearts this question, For what it is you do affect them, and what is in them 
takes your hearts ? 

Run over those particular benefits celebrated (Eph. i.), all which the 
apostle pronouneeth to be ' spiritual blessings ' (ver. 3). And particularly 
observe wherein the lustre of their spiritualness lies. 

1. What greater benefit or honour can be to us than to be the sons of 
God ? ver. 5. Is it a small matter to be a son-in-law to a king ? Oh, what 
honour is it to be a son to God ! There you see is the benefit ; well, but 
see what are the beams of spiritualness that irradiate this, and shine every 
way through it ? 

(1.) That the original of it was the good pleasure of his will. 

(2.) That this is bestowed by Jesus Christ. 

(3.) That it is bestowed to the praise of the glory of his grace. Take 
this benefit, as it is thus spiritualised, and there is no heart that can truly 
prize and affect it, as thus considered and circumstantiated, but it must be 
a spiritual heart. 

(1.) That heart is spiritual which values it in respect of its original, viz., 
The good pleasure of his will. This took Christ's heart in God's saving of 
his people (which Christ is personally interested in as much as we) more 
than the salvation itself of them : Mat. xi. 25, ' Father, I thank thee. Even 
so, Father : it seemed good in thy sight.' Christ sets his seal, his own 
concurrency of will with God's, as that which above all pleased him also in 
it, namely, that ' so it seemed good in his sight.' What is it the beloved 
disciple in like manner calls up believers to behold and value their sonship 
by? Even this original of it, the love of God: 1 John iii. 1, ' Behold 
what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that wj should be 
called the sons of God.' Herein lies the spiritualness of their value fori 


the love of God, in respect of its fountain in God's heart ; his love therein 
is valued more than the thing. 

(2.) That heart is spiritual which values the privilege of sonship on the 
account of its being bestowed by Jesus Christ, and that it is possessed by 
virtue of a relation to him. This also holds forth spiritualness above what 
our sonship is otherwise in itself. Adam was a son of God's by creation, 
Luke iii. 38. But to be a son of God by Christ, this is a higher thing, 
and puts the spiritualness upon it which a holy heart values. For it is 
to be a son-in-law by marriage unto, and union with, the natural Son of 
God. So then the spirituality of our sonship lies in that relation it hath 
unto Christ. Now bring a spiritual heart unto it, and though it cannot 
but infinitely rejoice that it is become a son of God, yet that this should 
be such a sonship as is founded upon relation to Jesus Christ as a husband, 
this makes his joy greater. To which of all the angels hath he said, My 
Son is thy husband, and thou art his spouse, and so thereby becomest my 
son ? ' To as many as received him, he gave power to be the sons of God,' 
John i. 13. This infinitely adds more unto it in a spiritual heart's esteem. 

(3.) A spiritual heart rejoiceth that this should tend ' to the praise of 
the glory of his grace :' that God should take sons, who at best were such 
but by creation, and then by the fall were made sons of wrath, children of 
hell, sons of Satan, and make some persons sons, and sons by Christ. 
And this rebound that it hath unto the praise of the glory of his grace, is 
the spiritualness of this benefit, the apostle being judge. How hath or doth 
thy soul close with it ? 

2. Then take the second benefit, instanced in ver. 6, which is, to be 
' graciously accepted ;' and still it holds of God and of Jesus Christ. 
Therein lies the spiritualness of it. First, There was mention of the free 
grace of God in it just afore, and then follows, ' wherein he hath graciously 
accepted us.' This David valued above all, when he said ' Tby favour is 
better than life ;' yea, even above the life he had by it, or through it, 
whether spiritual or temporal. God's grace and love ought to be more 
valued than the benefit that occurs thereby. 

3. A spiritual heart considers that this acceptation is ' in the beloved.' 
If God would profess to love one man immediately, as he is considered in 
himself alone (as some say he doth still the angels, or to be sure, as he did 
Adam at first), and to love another man in Christ, who is the primum amabile, 
his first and naturally beloved, his only begotten Son ; Oh, how would the 
heart of a third man standing by, that is spiritual, say, O Lord, love me 
in the beloved with that love thou lovest thy Son ! John xvii. 23. What 
love is it that Paul values and triumphs in ? When, Rom. viii. 37, 39, 
he had first said, ' In all these things we are more than conquerors through 
him that loved us ;' what love was it he had in his eye, that he thus valued, 
and which caused him to triumph ? He tells us, ver. 39, that it was ' the 
love of God which is in Jesus Christ our Lord.' Take this away, and all 
other love is but a common love, a providential love. But herein lieth the 
gospel spiritualness of God's love, that the favour of God is transmitted 
through Christ, who first hath contracted all the beams of God's love into 
himself, and so diffuseth them unto us. This takes and inflames the heart 
more than if in common, and immediately, the divine love was cast down 
upon us ; as in a burning glass you see the beams of the sun to be more 
contracted and strengthened. 

4. A spiritual heart considers the other benefit, ver. 7, ' redemption and 
forgiveness of sins.' This all men will readily and greedily listen after. 

Chap. VII.] in our salvation. 18] 

Well, but a spiritual heart takes it in those rays of spiritualness Paul hath 
set it in. (1.) In whom we have it, namely, Christ. (2.) Through his 
blood. (3.) According to the riches of his grace. Justification and pardon 
of sin through Christ's righteousness is the glory of our religion. And take 
it in all that doth surround it, it is as spiritual a point as any other. And 
indeed it is too spiritual, not for papists only, but for many in these times, 
to cleave to. There are those among us who begin to be weary of it, though 
formerly, out of reverence to the Reformation of religion, even carnal hearts 
entertained it. But take it in its true spiritualness, and then to be sure 
only spiritualised souls will value it. 

A spiritual heart regards justification by Christ's righteousness as it re- 
lates unto God's glory, that is, the glory of his grace. If ever God con- 
trived anything for his glory, he did this. Inherent grace in us justified us 
once, but though it was the love of God the creator, and the due of innocent 
nature, yet God had no great liking to it ; for as, Rom. iv. 2, 4, man had 
thereby whereof to glory ; and the greatest reward was, by that way, 
reckoned of debt and not of grace ; so man falling, God was willing to take 
that escheat and forfeiture, and for ever to despoil inherent grace (though 
he meant to bestow such grace still out of grace anew) of its first ancient 
privilege, and hath pronounced his sentence against it, that whatever it 
might avail and serve for in man's primitive innocent state, to be sure it 
should never justify him that hath it more. The glory of his own grace 
entered upon this, and hath sequestered it as his own prerogative for ever, 
to the glory of his grace. And he valued this one thing so much, as he 
hath given it away, and entitled his own Son to it, on purpose to magnify 
his blood, that this might be his eminent title, ' Jehovah, the Lord our 
righteousness.' And he hath put him into the possession of this honour, 
as won by his sword and his bow ; as Jacob said of a plat of ground he gave 
to Joseph. 

Use. Now to bring this home to our hearts by application. The news of 
forgiveness, justification, redemption, all men run away with. But, I beseech 
you, consider wherein the spiritualness of this benefit lies, and whether ever 
your hearts have been taken at all with it. Indeed, they should be most 
taken with it. 

1. We ought to adore this way of our salvation, as it brings in so great a 
glory to God's grace, and to Jesus Christ ; so as, were we to choose, we 
would have this way. This was the disposition of the heart of Abraham 
our father, as appears in Rom. iv. Compare but the beginning and the 
conclusion of the apostle's discourse about our father Abraham. Whereas, 
ver. 2, it is said, that ' if Abraham had been justified by works, he had 
whereof to glory' (which was contrary to God's design), and whereas 
he made Abraham's faith the subject of his discourse in the residue of that 
chapter, at last he concludes, ver. 20, that ' he staggered not at the pro- 
mise through unbelief, but was strong in faith, and gave glory to God,' 
and ' therefore,' ver. 23, ' it was imputed to him for righteousness.' This his 
giving glory to God (though withal he commends the strength of his faith 
he did it with) hath a respect to ver. 2. Where, in opposition to Abraham's 
glorying (if he had been justified by works) he had had whereof to glory, 
but not afore God. So then, by comparing each, the meaning is, that 
Abraham fell down afore God upon the revelation of this way of justifica- 
tion, which he perceived much to tend to glorify God and his grace, that 
willingly upon that account he gave up all his own works (a greater sacri- 
fice than that which he intended, namely, the sacrifice of his son, which is 


celebrated as a noble work proceeding from faitb, James ii.), and laid them 
upon the altar of God's glory. And he was glad that his heart had light 
upon such a way as did so highly glorify God by the Spirit, being the 
more strengthened (as it is said) to seek salvation by this way, because it 
gave all to God, and nothing to man. Hath this in justification taken thy 
heart, which took our father Abraham's ? Perhaps thou wouldst serve thy- 
self on God, and take the benefit of this his pardon ; but hath it ever been 
done with giving the glory to him and to his grace ? 

2. Thus also when thou comest to have recourse to Christ's blood and 
righteousness for justification (which is the second thing Paul puts in to 
spiritualise this benefit unto us), is it the glorious relation to, and the 
influence that Christ and his blood hath upon justification, that causeth 
thee to value it, looking upon it not only as a thing thou must have or thou 
art lost and damned, but Oh ! dost thou desire to be clothed with it, to be 
found in it ? For what doth a spiritual heart value it ? What ! is it only 
because their own righteousness is as filthy rags, therefore they throw it 
away ? No. But that if it had the righteousness of Adam, yea, that 
which all the angels had at first, yea, all the inherent grace and glory which 
both angels and saints have now in heaven, it would gladly take the occa- 
sion to throw it away, and make a trophy and spoil of it to glorify this 
righteousness of Christ. It was the apostle's desire ' to be found in Christ, 
not having his own righteousness.' He speaks like a man afraid of being 
taken tardy in that place of residence, and runs away from it as far as ever 
he could. 'Unto me' (says Christ, Isa. xlv. 23, for it is spoken in his 
name, as appears by the apostle's citation, Rom. xiv. 11, Phil. ii. 10) ' shall 
every knee bow.' And what special glory is it that the saints shall give to 
him? The 24th verse tells us, ' Surely one shall say' (as the greatest 
thing they could say, and they say it with the greatest asseveration, as if 
they were to utter but one thing they would say this), ' In the Lord (Christ) 
have I righteousness.' Ah, how feelingly is it spoken ! And they give it to 
him as a matter of glory, for so it follows, ver. 24, ' In the Lord shall all 
the seed of Israel be justified, and shall glory.' And truly the conjunction 
of these two in that place, ' In the Lord I have righteousness' for justifica- 
tion (as it is interpreted, ver. 25), and ' in the Lord have I strength' for 
sanctification, makes me consider Augustine's interpretation of that passage 
in Ps. lxxi. 16, which an hundred times he celebrates to this very sense 
(though our reformed interpreters reject it), 'I will go in the strength 
of the Lord God, I will make mention of thy righteousness, even of thine 

This relation that forgiveness of sins hath unto Christ's blood as the 
price, how doth it raise the price of it unto a holy heart ! How do the 
apostles speak of it, and thereby teach believers how to esteem it, and the 
benefit by it, as it is by his blood, and that as having a relation to his per- 
son, that gives the value to it ! ' We are redeemed ' (says Peter), ' not by 
gold or silver, &c, but by the precious blood of Christ,' 1 Pet. i. 18, 19. 
Oh, value your redemption by this great price of it. And to this Paul also 
directs us when he speaks, Acts xx. 28, of the church which God ' hath 
purchased with his own blood.' Mark it, the blood is valued as it hath 
relation to the person whose own it is. And again John speaks to the 
same purpose, Rev. i. 5, 6, ' From Jesus Christ, who hath loved us, and 
washed us from our sins in his own blood ; to him be glory and dominion 
for ever and ever ! ' How was the thought of forgiveness of sins (as it is a 
mere benefit to us) swallowed up into an adoring and giving glory to him 


who shed his blood for that benefit ! When the apostles speak but of faith 
as in this its relation to Christ's person, Oh ! how do they singularly term 
that grace above all others precious in that respect, and call upon all genera- 
tions to call it blessed, because it is that grace which thus adores, glorifies, 
and magnifies the blood and the righteousness of God and of our Saviour 
Jesus Christ: 2 Pet. i. 1, 'To all that have received like precious faith,' 
iv dixai'jjrjvr}, ' on the righteousness of God and our Saviour Jesus Christ.' 
Faith may have a thousand other virtues and properties in it ; but the glory 
it gives to Christ and his righteousness in point of justification is that 
which makes it precious faith indeed. This stone set in it, serving to make 
the lustre of this righteousness to shine forth, is that which makes the ring 
so rich and precious. I shall name one general conclusive place more, in 
1 Cor. i. 29-31, ' That no flesh should glory in his presence. But of him 
are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteous- 
ness, and sanctification, and redemption ; that, according as it is written, 
Let him that glorieth glory in the Lord.' The thing I quote this now for 
is, that it is not justification or redemption, alone and singly taken, nor 
Christ's being made righteousness and justification to us, and our sanctifi- 
cation, being accepted in him, which the heart should alone glory in, but 
the heart should rejoice in the honour which Christ hath by all his, or it is 
not truly spiritual. 


That a spiritual heart desires heaven, as it is a spiritual happiness ; desires 
and prizes inherent graces as spiritual ornaments of the soul, and a divine 
likeness, in which God is pleased; takes pleasure in holy duties, on the 
account of Jiis having converse and communion with God in them. 

You have hitherto seen how all the benefits reckoned, Eph. i., are spi- 

Now take heaven itself, which he there also mentions, ver. 11, 'In whom 
we have obtained an inheritance,' &c. If any benefit seems to be desired 
and affected by the generality of men, it is heaven ; because it is conceived 
to be the ultimate happiness that will fill up the natural desire of the soul 
to the fall. Yet if men did take in true and genuine notions of it, what 
that happiness is, and wherein it lies, in the spiritualness of it, and we could 
suppose their hearts remained still carnal, nothing would be more unsuited 
to them. If (as Christ says to the sons of Zebedee) you knew what you 
asked, or knew what it is to be there, none but a heart truly, yea, sub- 
limately spiritual, can find in its heart to desire it. The apostle Paul, Eph. 
i. 17, 18, prays for these Ephesians, that thsy might have a spiritual know- 
ledge of the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, in these words, ' That the God 
of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give unto you the spirit 
of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of him : the eyes of your under- 
standing being enlightened ; that ye may know what is the hope of his 
calling, and what the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints.' 
Elsewhere it is called an inheritance of the saints, Col. i. 12, as the pos- 
sessors of it : here (in Eph. i. 18) he speaks otherwise of it, as an inheri- 
tance, a-jrou, of him. It is translated, ' his inheritance in the saints.' The 
signification of it is, that it is what the saints have by inheriting himself. 
I would but ask who or what in heaven is the inheritance of the man Jesus ? 


It is said, Rom. viii. 17, that we are ' heirs of God, joint heirs with Christ.' 
Now what is Christ's inheritance? It is God himself: Ps. xvi. 5, ' Thou 
art the lot of mine inheritance.' It is Christ's speech. It is not a happi- 
ness only from God as the author, but it is in God himself, who is there 
to be enjoyed. In heaven, God is set afore us to pick all happiness out 
of; and so all that happiness must arise from suitableness of heart to him. 
And therefore the saints are said, Col. i. 18, to be ' made meet to be par- 
takers of it.' And here in this place of Eph. i. 11 it is added, ' in the 
saints ;' for none else can take comfort or joy in God, Rom. v. 11. Come 
now, canst thou say, and say it heartily, out of a taste how good the Lord 
is, ' Whom have I in heaven but thee ?' Canst thou out of a taste (I say) 
declare there is nothing on earth which thou hast enjoyed in comparison 
of him ; so as thy soul saith with itself, If God be in heaven, and if all 
hold good which the word says of him, and I have him there, though I 
should have nothing but him, I find I should be happy enough ? Canst 
thou say this ? It is a sign thy heart is spiritual. 

5. Take grace inherent in us, what is it draws out thy heart to desire it 
but the spiritualness of it ? 

(1.) It is certain that grace hath the greatest dowry that any creature, 
whether in heaven or earth, hath. ' Godliness is profitable to all things,' 
1 Tim. iv. 8, ' having the promise of this life, and a better belonging to it ;' 
but these simply are but additional unto it ; and it may be thy heart is 
only willing to match with so rich an heiress. 

(2.) Virtue hath an ornament in it, as it adorns the soul, and is the 
perfection of it. And so the philosophers, Plato, Hercules, and others, 
judged it. But wherein doth the excellency, the spiritualness of grace, lie ? 
1. That it is the image of God and Christ, and so is allied to him, of kin 
to him, as being divine nature. 2. That it fits thee for, and carrieth forth 
thy heart unto communion and fellowship with God, and is a principle that 
enableth thee to sanctify him in thy heart. 3. That it makes thee in 
these respects beautiful, amiable, yea, glorious in God's eyes and esteem, 
whose favour thou valuest above life. It makes thee such that Christ 
greatly delights in thy beauty, Ps. xlv. Doth God there move the church 
to get much of grace, Eph. v. 26, 27, that he might sanctify and cleanse it, 
and present it glorious to himself; that is, for his own delight and rejoicing 
in her as his spouse ? And doth godliness thus alone considered, or (as 
the apostle's own phrase is, 1 Tim. vi. 6) in its own self-sufficiency, [lira 
auTat/islag, take thy heart to seek it as great gain ? Here is spiritualness. 

6. Take duties of obedience, as prayer, reading the word, partaking of 
the holy ordinances of God : there is a spiritual part in all these ; which 
is, to meet with God in them, to sanctify him in the heart whilst we are 
conversant in them. The law of these duties is to have to do with God ; 
and if with God, then to glorify him as God in our hearts and affections ; 
that is the spirit of them. And therefore, 1 Tim. iv. 8, godliness is opposed 
unto bodily exercise, that is, the outward performance only, for godliness is 
the spirit of obedience ; which is, 

(1.) When God is sanctified as the end of thy duties. 

(2.) When he is regarded as the object matter of them, and as one with 
whom we converse in them, then they are spiritual duties ; when God is 
sanctified in the heart ; and then God is sanctified, when either the motives 
for duties are fetched from considerations of God, and he is made the 
matter of them, and the converse we have with him is from some suitable- 
ness of heart unto him. But that which causcth carnal hearts (or any 

Chap. VIII.] in our salvation. 185 

heart so far as carnal), to neglect them, or to be weary of them, or wish 
they were over and done, is, that tho law of them is to have to do with 
God all that while, who to a carnal heart is burdensome company. And 
60 carnal men perform theso duties to him, as complimenters do visits to 
persons whose company they regard not. * Will the hypocrite pray 
always ?' says Job. And why will he not ? Because ' he will not delight 
himself in the Almighty,' Job xxvii. 10. That is the law of the duty, and 
he cannot consort with God, but overly, and so his prayers grow overly, 
and in the end he gives over. To pray, or read, to ease thy conscience, 
and to keep all quiet there, what is it ? That is not the essential part of 
the duty. Paul considered the law and duties of it in its spiritual nature, 
Rom. vii. 14. The law is spiritual and good, and, verse 22, be tells us 
that he delighted in the law of God in the inner man, and in every duty of 
it. Now delight is out of suitableness, and why ? Because his inner man, 
that delighted itself in God, was assimilated to God, Rom. viii. 7. The 
carnal mind is said to be enmity against God, first, and therefore not subject 
to the law ; and so the reason men delight not in these duties of the law, 
whose tendency is to carry the soul up to God, is because they delight not 
in God. But the state of the case is quite contrary in a godly man : Ps. 
cxliii. 10, ' Teach me to do,' says David, ' thy will, for thou art my God ; 
thy Spirit is good, lead me into the land of uprightness.' None but a 
spiritual heart could experimentally and feelingly have moved God with 
this, as being first moved thereby itself. He had found the Spirit of God 
coming upon him in duties, teaching and leading, acting and quickening 
him, verse 8, and was so good to him, that he loved these inward influences 
and effluxes of his heart to God therein ; and they were so good to him, so 
suited, that be prays for more, and could not be content without it. Oh ! 
(says David) thy Spirit is good ! Oh, therefore, give me him, act me by 
him in all that I do. 

7. To mention no more ; take God, and Christ, and the Holy Spirit, 
which are (as I said) prima spiritnalia, the first and chiefest spirituals. 
What suitableness hast thou had unto these, abstractly considered in them- 
selves, cutting off what accidental goodness is annexed to them as repre- 
sented in the word ? Doth thy soul say at times, yea, at any time, ' The 
Lord is my portion ?' Lam. iii. Doth thy naked soul say it of the naked 
Lord, and say it heartily from the soul ? Lovest thou him by all thou hast 
heard of him, or knowest of him by his attributes, laws, decrees, and dis- 
pensations ? Thus also for Christ, dost thou love him for himself, and not 
only as a Redeemer ? Though to love him as such, he doth allow thee ; 
for therein he hath shewn and manifested infinite love unto thee. But yet 
there is aliquid in Christo formosius Salvatore, there is that in Christ that 
is far more amiable than his being a Saviour. Dost thou love him as thy 
head and husband, more than as thy Saviour ? So a wife unto a physician, 
if she loves him, will really do all for him, although she be never so diseased 
and needs his help (both these relations of head and Saviour in Christ, are 
distinctly insisted on, Eph. v.). Or dost thou love him for what God most 
loveth him (and that is, that he is his only begotten, and therefore beloved, 
Son, and because he pleased his Father in all things), as well as because 
out of love he did work thy righteousness ? God therefore loved and 
exalted him, because he was obedient to death, Phil, iii., because he loved 
righteousness and hated iniquity, Ps. xlv., therefore God exalted him, and 
anointed him with the oil of gladness. There are and have been souls that 
have found their hearts drawn forth in love to Christ, chiefly because in 


doing (though for themselves), he expressed so much obedience to his 
Father, and thereby shewed he loved them,* John xiv. 31, having that in 
his eye more than their salvation. And dost thou reckon withal this as 
thy chiefest good, and desire of thy soul, to be and live for ever with him ? 
Oh, to be with Christ is best of all, says Paul. Dost thou value the in- 
dwellh g of the Spirit ? Canst thou say to God, ' Thy Spirit is good,' who 
helps me to all that sweet communion with thyself, and takes of Christ, 
and gives it to my soul. • Oh, take not thy Spirit from me,' for ' thy Spirit 
is good,' &c. 

Obj. You will say, these are but notions, and such as are invented to 
express in the abstract spiritualness by. 

Ans. I answer, they are such notions as will distinguish one day all your 
souls into heaven, or into hell; and they are such real notions, as holy and 
happy souls feel them and live upon them. Paul, you see, writing to them 
that were spiritual, spiritualiseth all these things in this manner as I have 
now done, and thus sets out these things, as taking it for granted they (as 
so represented) would take with spiritual hearts, as suited to them. And 
therefore he provoketh these Ephesians to bless God for them as spiritual 
benefits, spiritual in these respects, as he had set them forth ; so he writ, 
so he preached, and so were their hearts suited to them. I conclude (as 
the apostle doth, 1 Cor. xiv. 37), 'If any man think himself to be spiritual, let 
him acknowledge ' these things to be spiritual, and then see how they (as 
such considered) and his heart do agree. 

Use. You leam hence what is the true measure of judging of our spiritual 
growth. It is to grow up in what is time spiritualness, which is a raising 
up all in the soul unto things spiritual, in their spiritualness. It is not a 
growth in respect of bulk, either of duties, or knowledge of, or affections 
unto, things spiritual, but still they must be discerned and loved in their 
spiritualness. And by this character is growth in grace, with difference 
from younger Christians, still expressed. Gal. vi. 1, ' If any be overtaken 
in a fault, you that are spiritual, restore such an one :' that is, you that 
profess to have more grace, and are more deeply acquainted with tempta- 
tions, as in the next words insinuated. Thus also the apostle speaks, 
1 Cor. iii. 1. 'I could not write unto you as unto spiritual, but as unto 
carnal, even babes in Christ.' Spiritual men he opposeth to babes, and 
therefore understandeth by those spiritual persons, grown Christians ; that 
are raised up to discern of things that differ, and to approve the things that 
are excellent. 

* Qu. 'him'?— Ed. 

Chap. I.J in our salvation. 187 


Of the work of the Holy Ghost in us, as it is represented to us under the notion 
of a new creature. — That besides the Holy Spirit's indwelling in us, and his 
motions and actings of our sjjirits, there are permanent or abiding jirinciples 
wrought in our souls, which dispose them for holy actions, and give spiritual 
abilities for the performance of them. — That this new creature is a change 
of the heart. — That it is a conformity to the image of our Lord Jesus 


That exciting and moving grace is not all that the Spirit doth for us, to enable 
us to the performance of holy actions. But he works grace inherent, which 
is an abiding principle in us. The opinions of the popish doctors, of the 
Arminians, and of some enthusiastics, considered. 

That which is born of the Spirit, is spirit. — John III. 6. 

I have proved from this text of Scripture that the thing wrought in us 
by the Spirit is spirit, and makes us spiritual. I now resume the same 
text, to demonstrate from it this assertion or doctrine. 

Doct. That over and above exciting, and moving, and aiding grace unto 
acts, there are inwrought and infused in the soul at regeneration, inherent 
and abiding principles of spiritual life, by which the soul is inwardly fitted, 
capacitated, inclined, and quickened unto the operations of a spiritual life. 

I shall first consider, and refute some opinions that are contrary to this 
assertion. Though the papists very much speak of habitual grace as a 
principle by which the soul acts, yet they assert that the first and only grace 
that actually turns the soul is no more than exciting and adjuvant grace ; 
and that so to conversion it is sufficient that we be aided and assisted by 
divine grace, without receiving a new principle of life from it. But yet 
they say when a man hath turned to God out of free will, excited by an 
internal motion of grace at first, then God infuseth a habit of grace as a 
root, or a radical principle of good works. But then observe the reason, 
and to what end they thus state it, and affirm how that then, and not before, 
the soul's first turning to God, the habits of grace are infused by God. 

1. Because, in plain terms, according to their doctrine, sanctification, 
or inherent grace, or the infusion of a new principle of life, is justification, 
or that for which God adopts and accepts a man to eternal life, as that 
which renders a man amiable and acceptable to God, and constitutes him 

And 2. They assert that a man being at present made righteous, or 
justified thereby, then those habits infused further becoming the roots and 



principles of good works, these good works come accepted in order to the 
meriting eternal life, and are habitual graces given as the foundation of 
merit, but so as still the first acts of turning to God are carried on by excit- 
ing grace ; and therefore they say the understanding and will are but as of 
a man in the dark, that can see imperfectly, or of a man fettered or sick, 
that can stir if helped. And they therefore call all these acts of turning to 
God by the names of attrition and contrition, and the like, as pro^disposi- 
tions of the soul to the infusion of this form or principle of grace, even as 
fire or flame is introduced into the wood when it hath been heated and hath 
smoked. This is the papist's doctrine. See Bellarmin, de rjratid, lib. 6, 
cap. 15, per totum. And so Bishop Davenant in his Determinations, Quest. 9, 
and in Perkins his Reformed Catholick, do state their opinion and refute it. 

And though I know many of them say that to every supernatural act of 
exciting grace, a habit at least, or an inherent disposition infused is required ; 
yet I retort this as a contradiction in their doctrine, which is that justifica- 
tion after a man is so turned to God in the infusion of habits, which therefore 
they must necessarily thereby deny to be afore conversion ; or else why is 
not the man justified thereby, or else acceptable afore ? Bishop Davenant 
also, in that before-cited Determination of his, retorts it further thus upon 
them : ' Some papists (says he, citing Suarez) overcome by force of argu- 
ment, do yield, that unto the bringing forth of spiritual acts, there is always 
infused by God a quality which supplies that which a habit serves for. Yet 
to solve that other principle, they withal say that it differeth from a habit 
only in this, that it is not permanent, but passeth away together with the 
act, when that ceaseth. To what end (saith he) are these evasions ? Why 
do they not acknowledge these kind of infusions into the powers of men's 
souls to be the vivification of them, and that to continue as permanent and 
to be increased.' * 

Others, who are not papists, putting our justification upon faith in Christ 
alone, and not upon habitual grace at all, yet withal falling in with the 
popish doctrine of free will and exciting grace as sufficient to the fir_st con- 
version, they professedly and utterly deny any infusion of habits or principles 
abiding in the soul necessary to conversion, but that it consists altogether 
in acts stirred up by supernatural motions, by which the will is strengthened 
to accept or refuse. And so all of our conversion, according to this 
Arminian opinion, lieth in such acts of our parts, excited by extrinsecal 
motions and enlightenings on God's part. Hereby it comes to pass (as 
they would have it) that the whole of conversion is parted between the will, 
nakedly considered, and the adjuvant grace of God, assisting or elevatiDg 
the will by way of motion and persuasion, without any working or infusion 
of a new heart and spirit unto us ; for they being not necessitated to em- 
brace such habits for justification, as the papists do, and yet falling in with 
the freedom of man's will and supernatural exciting grace only, as the 
papists do, they reject all such infusion of habits, and wholly deny any part 
of regeneration to He therein, and say it is figmentum scholasticism, an 
invention of the schoolmen. Only indeed this they own, that the soul 
being thus once turned to God by exciting grace, by its multiplying such 
acts, though that grace acquires a habit or facility to act graciously, as by 
the often repeating of other acts men use to do in arts or faculties acquired 
(as in playing on the lute, &c), which indeed supposeth (as their principles 

* How Alvarez states it out of the writings of many modern papists, you may read 
in his hook De Auxiliis, lib. 7. Pisp. 66, Nu. 1, whom yet heopposeth. as we do see 
also Suarez, lib. 8, de Gratia, cap. 5, 6, 7, 8, 11, 12, 13. 14, &c. 

Chap. I.] in our salvation. 189 

do) an imperfect inchoate power already in man's will to act graciously, 
which through assisting grace, stirred up by crebrons and frequent acts, 
grows up into a habit or facility of working. But the doctrine of regenera- 
tion which we profess is differing from both. We detest that doctrine of 
infusion of habits for justification, or as a foundation of works, to make 
them meritorious. But we say they are simply required for man's acting 
holily, and for the pleasing of God by good works, which good works declare 
and assert withal that in our regeneration, from the first acts to the last, 
and so throughout our lives, there are infused supernatural principles of life 
and grace, which remain and are inherent in us ; and so the works thereof, 
nay, the workings of grace in us, are not merely from motions and excita- 
tions of the Holy Spirit in us, which is the full scope of the apostle : Eph. 
ii. 10, ' We are saved ' (that is, justified and made heirs of life) ' through 
faith ; not of works ; for we are his workmanship, created unto good works, 
which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.' Here are 
good works as the fruit, and here is a workmanship created in us as the 
principle whence works proceed ; ' we are his workmanship, created to good 
works,' and there are no good works without it. But yet instead of good 
works being ordained to justify us, he* is the adequate and full end and 
ordination of God's workmanship in us unto good works, which is only that 
we should walk in them. 

There is another opinion of some high-flown people, who reject and 
despise all habits and effects of grace, esteeming such a participation of the 
divine nature (and of which the apostle speaks, 2 Peter i. 4) to be merely 
by accidents and qualities, which they contemn. This notion is too low 
for them, and therefore they boldly assert that they are partakers of the 
divine nature by being transubstantiated into God, and that though they be 
no more than creatures in appearance, yet the being of God is in reality 
the substance of their being. And though this opinion is veiled under the 
notion only of higher union with God, yet it is demonstrable out of their 
writings, that they, rejecting all that our divines say of our blessed state in 
heaven itself, and of God's being all in all, as to the communications of 
himself to us there ; and rejecting also the hypostatical union of the human 
nature to the person of the Son of God, they cannot feign any higher union 
above those than that which consists in this, that the saints shall become 
God. And their believing themselves to be God, though in appearance 
creatures, is the fundamental in which all their religion centres, and indeed 
they need no more. So then as God said, upon occasion of the fall of 
man, ' Man is become as one of us ;' so say they of man restored, 
that he becomes God. And therefore they professedly cry out against two 
things especially in our divinity, because they lie in the way of this high 
imaginary preferment of the new creature, to which they profess to advance 
it. One truth decried by them is the personal union of our nature with the 
divine in Jesus Christ, which, though it be the highest advancement any 
creature is capable of, yet falling lower than this which they aspire unto, 
they despise it, as not nigh enough for them, all the saints being (as they 
say) raised up to the form of God, and transformed unto God. 

Among many other grounds of this bold assertion, there is one more 
plausible, which is this, that by our opinion we make all our communion 
with God to be but accidental, by virtue of accidents, or qualities in the 
eoul, and not real or substantial. 

But I answer, It is true, that as the soul itself, and its faculties of under- 
*Qu. 'here'?— Ed. 


standing and will, are but creatures, so graces are but qualities in it, and 
that knowledge and love which remain in heaven, are no more than 
qualities. But yet if they will allow the substantial soul of man to be a 
mere creature, and to remain a creature for ever, distinct from that divine 
essence and being, then it cannot otherwise be partaker of the Godhead 
than by such communion with him as our* person with another person, 
who never become one in nature and essence, but continue two several beings. 
The communications therefore of God to us, and our communion with him, 
are transacted no otherwise than by our knowing God, loving him, and en- 
joying him for ever. A created understanding and will in a creature, not 
united to one of the persons hypostatically, can come no otherwise to be 
capable of communion and intercourse with God. And yet to say that this 
is but an accidental enjoyment of God, or the divine nature, is utterly false. 
For as we acknowledge and profess that it is God himself, and all the 
blessedness of him objectively, that is both known and loved of us, so we 
profess to enjoy as our happiness the divine nature as it is in itself; for 
such will our enjoyment of him be in heaven, where these inherent principles 
of communion with him, viz., the knowledge of God, and the love of God, 
will continue, and be perfected. And withal we affirm, that the soul is 
swallowed up into the enjoyment of God, as its all in all. But as for 
essential participation, viz., so to enjoy him as to be made one being with 
him, that can never be. The manner of the enjoyment is by means of 
accidents indeed, but the thing enjoyed is the divine nature made known 
to us, and beloved of us, as most blessed in himself. But withal we say 
that if the soul had not these faculties of understanding and will, which are 
but accidents, though essential properties of it, and likewise if it had not 
those infused qualities of grace and holiness superadded, it could not have 
this participation of God. Look, as the eye, when it beholds the sun, hath 
an immediate communion with the sun ; yet if it had not a visive faculty, a 
power of seeing, and were but a mere ball of flesh (such flesh as other parts 
of the body are), the eye could not be a receptive of the sun ; so it is here. 
The understanding could not see or know him as God, nor the will glorify 
him or love him as God, if it were not inspired and endowed with those new 
principles for which we are contending. Much less would it be capable of 
taking in the glory of God (as in heaven it doth) to be itself glorified 
thereby. And look, as when the eye beholds the sun, it reflects not on 
itself, it thinks not of, nor regards to boast of this, that it hath such a power 
of seeing in aspect, but it is wholly taken up with the glory of the sun itself, 
which is all in all in such a view ; so is it in heaven, when God is all in all 
to the blessed souls there. Only if there were not a new eye given to the 
soul to see with, and a heart to love him, or a divine nature like unto God's, 
it could never have to do with him, nor were it capable of it, nor meet for 
it. Take lead, yea, gold itself, and the loadstone will not draw it, nor will 
it follow the loadstone nor cleave unto it ; but let the divine power turn 
that gold into iron, which hath qualities like to and assimilated to the 
loadstone, and then you shall see the new-made iron in motion, as the load- 
stone moves to it ; yea, if the loadstone doth touch a piece of metal, it 
infuseth a magnetic virtue to draw needles unto it, and yet that virtue is 
but a new quality, or accident. So it is here with souls ; it is not the best 
or largest or most refined soul for the substance of it, with all its essential 
faculties, nor the largest or greatest understanding faculty in any such soul, 
that is fitted for this communion with God. But take the dullest soul and 

*Qu. 'one?'-ED. 

Chap. II. J in our salvation. 191 

meanest among all the number of souls, and let God infuse his likeness 
unto it, that is, give it a divine qualified understanding to know him and a 
disposed heart to love him, and instantly it runs after him, and doth it 
naturally and suitably. 


That the Holy Ghost, when he makes ?/s new creatures, works in us fixed and 
abiding principle* qf a spiritual life, proved: 1. Because it is a new birth, 
which supposeth a principle of life given; 2. Because this new creature is 
called spirit ; 3. Because it is called so in opposition to flesh ; 4. Because 
the apostle speaks of our being born of God, and so having received a seed of 
divine life which cannot sin ; 5. Because he speaks of eternal life abiding in 
us; 6. Because, 2 Pet. i. 3, we are said to be partakers of a divine nature, 
and this is something which is continually growing in us ; 7. The same is 
proved from the parable of the sower and his seed, Mark iv. 17, and of the 
ten virgins, Mat. xxv. 

I have in the foregoing chapter given an account of those opinions which 
allow no other work of the Holy Spirit, than to move and excite us to holy 
actions, and which deny his influence to produce in us living and abiding 
principles, from which, when regenerated, we have some inherent abilities 
(though in dependence still on his renewed enlivening us, both to ' will and 
to do,' Phil. ii. 13) to perform them. 

I shall now prove the doctrine which I propounded in the beginning of 
that chapter, which is this : 

Doct. That the Holy Ghost doth not only move and stir us up to all good 
actions which we do, but that in the work of conversion, he produceth in 
us living and lasting principles of a constant holy life. 

I. First, I shall first explain this doctrine. 

II. Second, I shall prove it, by several arguments. 

I. For the explication of the doctrine. All men may understand the 
difference between an inherent power in the soul, or principle wherewith to 
act, and the act, or operation itself, be it inward or outward, proceeding 
from it as the effect thereof. In the body we see a hearing ear (to which 
that speech of Christ's concerning spiritual hearing alludes, ' He that hath 
an ear to hear, let him hear'), which is made by God, and endowed with a 
ready disposition and ability to hear sounds ; and this power is inherent in 
the ear, and is ordained for hearing as the act. The same we may under- 
stand of the eye ; there is a visive power residing in it, and enabling it 
actually to see colours when laid afore it, which are the objects ordained 
and fitted by God unto it. The necessity of which permanent power in 
either we see by experience, and is mainly understood by the example of 
those whom Christ cured (that were born blind and deaf), if we consider the 
different condition of the persons afore and after the cure ; as also that there 
was an almighty power put forth, first, to give an inherent power to their 
ears and eyes to hear and see, ere their soul could put forth the acts of 
hearing or seeing. And of both these, the blind young man cured was so 
sensible that he proclaims it to Christ's praise : John ix. 25, ' One thing I 
know, that, whereas I was blind, now I see ;' and he knew too that it was 
extraordinary, and a work of omnipotency ; ver. 32, ' Since the world began, 
was it not heard that any man opened the eyes of one that was born blind.' 


And however there were a capacity and remote radical power in his soul, 
yet it could never have produced an act of seeing anything in this world, 
which it was in the midst of, without a new bodily eye, or a new endow- 
ment of it with a new power of seeing. 

Now there is in the case of a man unregenerate and regenerate, a further 
distinction to be made : 1. Of a natural faculty in the souls of each ; 2. Of 
a principle in the said faculty in order to act ; 3. Of the acts both are 
ordained for. 

Take the soul of a man unregenerate : it hath naturally and essentially an 
understanding faculty in it (he were not of mankind else), and that under- 
standing hath a capableness and a remote faculty to have spiritual objects 
taken in by it, and so to act towards them. For when it shall once come 
to know them in a spiritual manner, it must be said that it is the under- 
standing faculty which is essential to the man that doth understand them. 
Indeed, before a spiritual light induced into it, it still remains as one born 
blind as to those spiritual objects ; ' and it cannot receive them, for they are 
spiritually discerned,' 1 Cor. ii., but must be super-endowed with a new 
ability and principle infused into it by a new birth, or it cannot spiritually 
eye, nor at all understand, them as they are in themselves ; and although 
through adjutories of light, &c, men may see them in the painted glass 
and literal notion of them, yet not as they are in themselves in their true 
spiritual nature ; no, no more than our bodily eyes can see angels, that are 
of that other invisible world, a higher world than ours, unless they do 
assume visible shapes, or we see them painted with earthly colours. An- 
swerably Christ says, John iii. 3, ' Jesus answered and said unto him, 
Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see 
the kingdom of God.' They cannot see them. And thus also God pro- 
nounceth of the Jews in the wilderness, after forty years' experience of 
God's wonders and giving the law, Deut. xxix. 3, 4, ' Yet the Lord hath 
not given you a heart to perceive, and eyes to see, and ears to hear, unto 
this day.' Eyes they had, and understandings they had, as men, but not 
as spiritual men ; and so had not the true sight of spiritual things to affect 
their hearts towards them in their spiritual nature, without which God 
regards not any other apprehension of them. 

Now though this new spiritual visive power with which the understanding 
is endowed, be for the kind of its being but a quality, and a super- addi- 
tional accident introduced into the understanding, and not a facult} r , as the 
understanding is essentially inherent in the soul ; yet as it is planted in the 
soul in order to receive and take in things spiritual (which are of a higher 
order of beings unto our natural understandings, and are infinitely tran- 
scending things natural and worldly, which are the objects of our natural 
understandings, and by which, or like terms, the apostle distinguisheth 
those two differing, both objects and powers of a regenerate and unregene- 
rate man), so this new divine and heaven-born power, elevating and em- 
powering the soul to discern them, hath justly the name of being enstyled a 
' new understanding:' 1 John v. 20, ' And we know that the Son of God is 
come, and hath given us an understanding, that we may know him that is 
true,' that is, truly to understand him that is true. 

Thus the bodily eye of man after the resurrection, elevated to see angels 
(which now are invisible unto it), may be enstyled a new eye, yea, and a 
spiritual eye, even as the whole body then shall be ' a spiritual body' (as it 
is called, 1 Cor. xv.) ; and yet that change will be but the superinduction 
of new spiritual qualities, suiting the eye and whole body unto such spiritual 

Chap. II.] m oub salvation. 198 

objects, as angels, &c., arc; the substance both of those eyes and of those 
bodies remaining the same that now. And yet those new spiritual liabili- 
ties then are said to constitute their bodies spiritual, and transform and 
raise them into bodies of a higher rank and order like to angels, as Christ 
says ; aud he speaks it of what manner of persons, in respect of our bodies, 
we shall then be. In like manner, the whole of a man new born, so endowed 
with this divine quality of spirit (though it be but a quality), is styled a 
' new man,' a ' spiritual man.' It gives a new name to the whole man, 
and doth as truly constitute him such in that sphere of spirituality, and 
deserves to be so styled, being the principle of this new spiritual life, as 
much as the soul with its natural faculties, simply considered, hath the 
name of, and constitutes the man, to whose body it is joined, in the rank of 
a living soul. For though grace be but an accident, yet it is such as is 
worth all men's souls in the substance of them devoid of it. 

And further, If the soul were not, by the infusion of this new spiritual 
quality, elevated and admitted into that order of spiritual agents, having 
spiritual life, it would want that essential property (in common to all 
sorts of living agents in their kinds) to act from within itself ; but must be 
acted merely by a principle extrinsecal to itself. 

And further, The necessity of such a new spiritual hability to be infused 
into our souls, to constitute them spiritual, and agents of that kind, is, that 
both act and principle may be of one and the same kind and nature ; a 
spiritual acting, proceeding suitably from a spiritual principle ; which had 
first constituted the man, in whom it is, a spiritual man, as good fruit is 
from a tree first ' made good,' as Christ says, without which it cannot bring 
forth good fruit. 

And as the bodily eye, at the resurrection, cannot exert the least spiritual 
act to those spiritual objects specified, nor those bodies put forth any one 
exercise that is proper unto spiritual bodies, until at the resurrection the 
body be constituted a spiritual body ; so is it here. 

And lastly, This endowed spiritual principle in the soul is abiding, and 
permanently inherent in the soul, when those spiritual actings cease ; as 
the exercise-of our present senses do in sleep, or when they are disturbed 
and hindered. 

II. Having thus explained the doctrine, I come now to prove it, by these 
following arguments : 

1. In the words of my text, John iii. 6, the woi'k of the Spirit in us is 
expressed to be a being, or thing born, which implies principles of life 
given it, in order to acting and operations, or works of life. All other 
births do this. They give a natural being ; and so this gives a spiritual 
one ; and both according to their kind. In Scripture it is not the acts of 
faith or love that are said to be born of God, or a man to be born of God 
through those actings ; but, on the contrary, they are made signs of a 
man's being born of God, as effects are of their proper cause. As a 
child's crying, which is an act of life, is in law made a sign of a child's 
being born alive, so faith is made a sign of a man's being born again : 
1 John v. 1, ' Whosoever belie veth that Jesus is the Son of God is bom 
of God.' And this our regeneration doth contain in it many more graces 
besides faith. And this expression, ' to be born of God,' signified in the 
language of the primitive church a fundamental common general character, 
denoting a Christian truly and savingly wrought upon by God. Of which 
new birth, this one act of believing Christ to be the Son of God was an 
evidence. Deus possuit in cordc fundamentum Jidei, says Prosper: God puts 



in a foundation of faith into the heart, and then draws forth the acts of 
faith. So John i. 12, 13, They • who believed in his name,' which were 
1 bom not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but 
of the will of God.' They were born first. The like is spoken of the act 
of love : 1 John iv. 7, ' Every one tbat loveth is born of God, and know- 
eth God.' The act of loving God is alleged as the effect and tbe note of 
a man's being born of God. That which is added, ' and knoweth God,' 
shews that act of loving God dependeth likewise on an act of knowledge 
and of acquaintance with God persuading it, but both of them depend on 
our being born again. The act of the understanding in knowing God 
depends upon being born of God as the foundation of it, as well as the act 
of loving. ' Unless a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of 
God,' says Christ, John iii. 5, nor know anything belonging to it. The 
Scripture, speaking suitably to this allusion, compares these new powers 
and abilities unto natural faculties and powers, themselves in the soul s 
which are the principles of acting ; such as is the faculty and instrument 
of seeing, where seeing denotes the act. And the Scripture speaks of giving 
eyes to see, ears to hear, and a heart to understand : Deut. xxix. 4, ' Yet 
the Lord hath not given you an heart to perceive, and eyes to see, and 
ears to hear, unto this day.' Now that which is properly said to be given 
by one's birth is the natural faculty and ability of any thing to act so and 
so, according to its kind. So then, like as the natural birth brings a man 
forth with all the powers of sight, hearing, &c, so doth the new birth the 
like. The child exerciseth not these in the womb at the first, yet hath 
them all in the principle. It is Basil's comparison :* As the power of 
seeing in a sound eye ; as art in him who hath acquired it ; such is the 
grace of the Spirit in him who receives it ; always indeed present, but not 
perpetually operating. 

2. A second argument to prove the doctrine is, that the work of the Holy 
Ghost is termed spirit here in John iii. 6, and a spiritual man, 1 Cor. ii. 
14, 15, and that in order to discerning spiritual things. This argument will 
be farther strengthened, if the analogy be considered between this new birth 
of the soul, and the resurrection of the body (which is called the regenera- 
tion). Of the resurrection of the body it is said, 1 Cor. xv. 44, 45, &c, 
that ' the body is sown a natural body, but it is raised a spiritual body.' 
I would ask what is that new spiritualising of the body, but an endowing it 
with such new qualities and abilities as shall fit the body unto a spiritual 
condition and actings ? It shall be endowed with such new qualities, 
namely, as incorruption, glory, agility, &c, and perhaps with new senses, 
which we cannot now guess at, which are differing from, yet answering unto 
these natural qualities and powers our bodies now, as natural bodies, 
have ; unto which the character of these spiritual bodies is opposed. The 
change then is not barely of new acts, but of new powers and endowments 
enabling us to act. Therefore, verse 50, he speaks of our present bodies 
as those that are incapable of the objects and acts we shall have then : 
' Flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God.' They want powers 
to bear and sustain the objects of spiritual glory, and they want qualifica- 
tions to take them in. And, therefore, it is said of those that do not then 
die, that they ' shall be changed,' ver. 52, and these ' vile bodies shall be 
changed and fashioned like to Christ's glorious body,' Phil. iii. 21, which 
is spoken in respect of new inherent powers and endowments, which are 
qualities, and are styled the ' image of the heavenly man :' 1 Cor. xv. 48, 
* De Spiritu Sancto, cap. 26. 

Chap. II.] in our salvation. 195 

' As is the earthy, each arc the earthy, ' viz., Adam and his sons in their 
bodies ; for so endowed are ours from him. ' And as is the heavenly,' 
namely, Christ as risen, and in heaven, such shall our bodies be. All 
import likeness in qualifications, &c. Now then look, as the body is at 
and by the resurrection made spiritual in those respects, in like sense it is 
that the soul is made spiritual by regeneration, which is termed a resurrec- 
tion to the soul, as the other is the regeneration of the body ; as commonly 
in Scripture they are interchanged. The resurrection is termed a regene- 
ration, Matt. xix. 28 ; Col. i. 18, where Christ is called ' the first-born 
from the dead.' And • this day' (says God, Acts xiii. 33), ' have I begot- 
ten thee.' And so regeneration is termed a resurrection: Eph. ii. 5, G, 
1 Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ 
(by grace ye are saved), and hath raised us up together.' And Christ is as 
powerful, yea, and a greater benefactor to our souls now, than he will be 
then to our bodies. He will therefore be ' a quickening Spirit' to both. 
And, therefore, in making our souls spiritual, he doth as much for them, 
and works the like things, viz., new powers in the soul to ' see the kingdom 
of God' (as the phrase is in this third of John), as well as he will work new 
qualifications in the glorified body, that it may ' inherit the kingdom of 
God.' To give our bodies such eyes as shall see angels, who are spirits, 
and are not otherwise the objects of our senses, is but in analogy what is 
done to our souls hi giving them eyes to see, and an understanding to know, 
God and Jesus Christ, as they are in themselves. 

3. A third argument from what is in the text for this, is the opposition 
(in John iii. 6) between flesh and spirit. Flesh is evidently evil dispositions 
and inclinations unto evil which dwell in a man, and which as a root hath 
fruits. And pursuing that similitude, the apostle, enumerating the ' works 
of the flesh,' which ' are manifest,' termeth them the ' fruits of the flesh,' 
Gal. v.; and in opposition thereto spirit, in the 17th verse, is used in like 
sense. And when Paul, Rom. vii., speaks of that sin that dwells in him, 
he expresseth it to be a sin that, by occasion of the law, ' wrought all con- 
cupiscence,' ver. 8. Mark that word wrought. It was a sin which was 
distinct from the works of sin, and therefore it was an active disposition 
and inclination, distinct from those acts, as the cause of them ; which sin 
is also called an indwelling sin in the man, and so notes out what is per- 
manent. And in this sense doth the apostle up and down in Rom. vii. 
speak of it, terming it flesh, as ver. 5, and himself, in respect of this sin, 
carnal, ver. 14 ; and ' in my flesh,' says he, ' dwells no good thing.' And 
in that very speech of his there, which he speaks by w r ay of explanation or 
limitation, ' In me, that is,' says he, ' in my flesh, dwells no good thing,' he 
implies that he had another self, or me, wherein all good did dwell (even as 
in himself, as he was flesh, no good thing did dwell), and wherein the con- 
trary good did dwell ; that is, an inclination to what was truly good and 
spiritual. And therefore it follows, ' to will is present with me.' To will 
what ? Anything that is good, which yet he was not able to perform ; as 
it follows, ' but how to perform that which is good I find not ;' as if he had 
said, Yea, but yet I have so much of good, too, continually dwelling in me, 
opposite to this flesh, as is ready to put forth, and doth put forth, though 
but an imperfect act or will (for the principle is but imperfect, and lasa 
principia habent Icesas uperationes) unto what is good, when it is presented 
to it. Now, what is an inward readiness and preparedness to good, and 
that spiritual good, as the law is, but a habitual principle indwelling ? 
And therefore as of that wicked man it is said, he was ready to all evil, 


Acts xiii. 10, so of a godly man it is in like manner said, he is ready to 
every good work, Tit. ii. 14, meet and prepared as a vessel is for his 
master's use, both by its habitual fashion and make, as we say, which are 
inward dispositions that fit it, by the cleanness of it from defilement, as 
2 Tim. ii. 21. 

4. A fourth argument is drawn from what the apostle John says, 1 John 
iii. 9, ' Whosoever is born of God doth not commit sin ; for his seed re- 
maineth in him : and he cannot sin, because he is born of God.' He 
speaks of our being born of God, and that there is a suitable nature, a seed 
of divine life in us which cannot sin or be touched with evil, for it cannot 
act contrary to its own nature and being ; as fire being preserved cannot 
act contrary to its nature. It may indeed be put out by subtraction of 
fuel, yet if it be kept up, and remain fire, it cannot either moisten or cool. 
This in analogy is the force of the apostle's reasoning, that every believer 
by his new birth receives such a seed of spiritual life, such a heavenly 
nature, which cannot sin ; for to do so would be to act contrary to itself. 
It is the soul itself which is endowed with the seed of life, and is the sub- 
ject and intriusecal principle of action. The Holy Spirit, though he is in 
us, and dwelleth in us, yet is not this seed of God here mentioned by the 
apostle, for he is estrinsecal to the soul herself, as to the actions which 
she doth. Now, it is the property of all things that have life to have, in 
their several kinds of life, a principle by which they bring forth actions of 
that life. And thus free and intelligent agents, in their kind, have a prin- 
ciple of life and action, besides that first and supreme Mover of all, ' in 
whom we live, and move, and have our being,' who, though he be in us, 
and acts us, yet he is but extrinsecal to the act. For we ourselves, being 
endowed with principles of action, are moved by him ; and therefore the 
actions which we perform, as praying, &c, are not attributed to the Holy 
Ghost as the subject of them, but only as the efficient. We must not say 
that they are the Holy Ghost's prayers subjectively, but only efficiently. 
He makes them in us and for us, and helps our infirmities in praying, 
Eom. viii. ; but that which constitutes us in the ranks of spiritual actors in 
the duty, and the subjects of it, is a principle of a spiritual life inherent 
and seated in the mind and will, and quickening us thereunto. And this 
is the seed conveyed in the new birth, and communicated from God, who 
hath life in hiinself. And that a man, thus born again, becomes thereby 
an agent from a new vital principle within him, is evident from a parallel 
scripture in the same epistle of John : 1 John v. 18, ' We know that who- 
soever is born of God sinneth not ; but he that is begotten of God keepeth 
himself, and that wicked one toucheth him not.' He speaks it indeed of 
the unpardonable sin unto death. But when he adds, ' he that is born of 
God keepeth himself,' he means that the regenerate man is an agent in the 
business, and acts from what is within himself. And his saying that he is 
born of God, implies that he hath received and doth retain the seed of God 
within him. 

That the Holy Ghost is not the seed meant in these two places, 1 John 
iii. 9 and 1 John v. 18, is evident, as by what hath been said, so by this 
farther reason, because it would be improper to say that therefore the man 
born of God cannot sin, because the Spirit of God in him cannot sin. This 
were utterly improper ; but to say (as aforesaid) that the man who is born 
of God, and hath his seed, cannot sin, is a speech which is consonant to 
the voice of nature. It implies the voice of an inward disposition, which 
causeth a man to say he cannot do thus or thus, contrary to his nature, 

Chap. II. J in our saltation. 197 

so remaining. It is nature speaks, but the Holy Ghost himself becomes 
not the new nature in or unto any soul. 

And that other speech, ' he who is born of God keepeth himself,' doth 
most properly sliew, that though the Holy Ghost in us be the great con- 
servator, and keeper, and actor of us, yet by means of our being bom of 
God, and receiving a seed of God within us, our understandings and wills 
do act, though actuated by him. So that the holy actions, though the 
Spirit excites and stirs us up to them, are our own, and we are the intrin- 
secal agent of them, and constituted to be so by virtue of a divine seed, 
conveyed to us in our spiritual birth. And the metaphor of seed remain- 
ing is (as Thomas Aquinas * out of Augustine explains it) an allusion to 
what God doth to his other creatures, bearing seed according to their kind. 
He hath communicated to every such creature a seminal principle, ordained 
to increase and grow up to such and such effects of bringing forth fruits, as 
we see in trees, &c. And so in the second creation, God in like manner 
puts in a seminal virtue, which, as the seed of mustard, the least of seeds, 
as Christ says, is yet to grow up to a tree, the greatest of all other. And 
therefore look, what proportion and ordination that natural seed, with its 
virtue sown in the ground, hath unto natural fruits and effects, the like 
hath this seed of God, sown in the soulf of the heart, unto supernatural 
acts. Seed is the communication of a principle of life from things that 
live, ordained to grow up and act according to its kind. And in a similar 
manner this here is the seed of all that holiness which after follows in our 
lives, and which springs from it ; yea, and it is the seed of glory itself. 

Nor is this seed merely the word of God heard or read by us, and re- 
maining in our minds and memory, as what we have heard our minds are said 
to retain. It is true, if the word heard become e/ipurog) an ingrafted word 
in the heart, changing that stock into its own nature, then indeed it is all 
one with this seed of the new birth; as the apostle speaks, James i. 18, 
1 Of his own will begat he us with the word of truth, that we should be a 
kind of first-fruits of his creatures.' Wherefore, says he, ver. 21, ' Where- 
fore lay apart all filthiness and superfluity of naughtiness, and receive with 
meekness the ingrafted word, which is able to save your souls.' This in- 
grafting of the word is in substance the same with regeneration itself, being 
a similitude to illustrate it. But though the word be sown, the mere sow- 
ing it is not regeneration, if it doth not take root in a good and honest 
heart, Matt. xiii. 18, &c, and therefore the mere receiving the good seed 
of the word, as the stony and thorny ground did, regenerateth no man. 
For if it be so, that the letter of the word falls either carelessly into men's 
ears, so that the understanding is not so much as possessed with a notion 
of divine truth, it is no more than seed laid up in the hard- trodden high- 
way ground. Or if it falls into the understanding, yet so as not to affect 
the heart, the devil soon takes it away, as the fowls pick up loose seed 
which hath not taken root in the ground. Or if it works so as to stir the 
affections, yet still if it wants depth of earth to take root, it is not the in- 
herent abiding principle of regeneration which we treat of, and indeed such 
a bare receiving of the seed regenerateth no man. 

That therefore which is meant by the ingrafted word is the law of God 
written in the heart (as God hath promised in his new covenant to do it), 
utterly differing from the work of the law in the letter of it, which the 
heathens had, Rom. ii. For it is such a writing of the law as God had 
written in Christ's heart : Ps. xl. 8, ' I delight to do thy will, my God : 
* Summa Theolog. Par. i. Quest. 62. Art. 3. t Qu. ' soil ' ?— Ed. 


yea, thy law is within my heart.' It is this ingrafted word, the word or 
law written by the Holy Ghost, 2 Cor. iii. 3, and therefore is distinct from 
that Holy Spirit himself, that is the abiding principle wrought in us by re- 
generation. And as Christ had this law written in his heart, Ps. xl. 8, so 
we hereby are conformed unto Christ's image, Rom. vi. For what is that 
but an inwrought strong disposition in the soul, conforming and inclining it 
to what the word and will of God directs unto ? Grace is the word of 
God concocted and digested into the heart, and made one nature with it. 
In which sense, and for which cause the word is said to abide for ever in 
the souls of men converted, 1 Pet. i. 2, 3. And that phrase, of writing the 
law in the hearts, imports no less than such an abiding principle. Words 
spoken are transient, and vanish into air ; but litem scripta manet, what is 
written abides, and is extant to be seen and read. 

5. I draw a fifth argument, to prove that the Holy Ghost in regenerating 
us works an inherent permanent principle of a spiritual life, from what the 
apostle John farther says of eternal life abiding in us. It is not only that 
eternal life abides upon us (as it is said, John iii. 36, that the wrath of 
God abides upon him who believes not), but it is said to abide in us. 
Eternal life must have a beginning as well as accomplishment. And we all 
say that the life of grace is the beginning of a life that is eternal, and will 
be perfected in glory, and abides in the mean time in him tbat hath ob- 
tained a right unto the life of glory to come. It is not only said that a 
man hath eternal life, in that sense as a man is said to have an estate, an 
inheritance he hath right unto ; but a regenerate man's condition is ex- 
pressed by this, that he ' hath eternal life abiding in him ; ' as an unre- 
generate man's condition is expressed by the contrary : 1 John iii. 15, 
' He that loves not his brother hath not eternal life abiding in him ; ' that 
is, in short, he hath not grace. It was a phrase in those times to express a 
man's spiritual state by that character, that he was one that had eternal 
life abiding in him, which phrase I urge. Now, says the apostle, I hope 
you will all grant that a murderer, whose heart and spirit is full of blood* 
to the saints, as Cain's was to Abel (in whom the apostle had instanced), 
such a man cannot have eternal life abiding in him, as not being consistent 
with such a heart and inward disposition which his soul is filled withal. 
He argues from the same topic and principle that he had done, ver. 9, that 
inherent grace, that is, eternal life, that abides in the soul, cannot consist 
with such a frame of heart as to hate the saints as such, and to seek their 
death and ruin. The act of murder, and that of a saint (as it may seem 
Uriah was) may with a right to eternal life consist in David, but a heart at 
enmity with the saints (which is John's scope) cannot, for it is a contradic- 
tion to that principle of eternal life which is begun in him and abides in 
him. You heard afore that grace is called a seed, because it is the seed 
and beginning of eternal life ; and this place confirms it, these both in 
like manner being said to be abiding in a Christian, and the apostle alike 
arguing from both. 

6. Further to prove my assertion, that by regeneration an inherent and 
abiding principle of life is wrought, I argue from 2 Pet. i. 3, ' According as 
his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and 
godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and 
virtue.' He speaks not of those external privileges and benefits by justi- 
fication and adoption, &c, which are given us, which is evident by 
two arguments. (1.) Because they are such things as are wrought in us 

* Qu. ' hatred ' ?— Ed. 

Chap. II.] in our salvation. 1U ( J 

by power. Tho giving justification and adoption is ascribed to bis grace, 
&c, towards us ; and so works done upon us, and out of us, and yet be- 
stowed on us, are usually said to be • to tbe glory of bis grace,' Eph. i. 
But wbat are done in us are the proper objects of power. 

(2.) Again, secondly ; It is added that God, or Christ, in giving us these, 
is considered as he that hath called us to glory and virtue. Now you know 
the true maxim is, that God's calling any person unto any employment or 
dignity is joined with the giving him abilities, and a heart suited with prin- 
ciples answerable. So then his meaning is, that God having by regenera- 
tion and faith called us unto a possession of glory hereafter, and the preli- 
bation of it here, and in order thereunto the exercise of virtue and holiness 
in this life ; he hath answerably, by the working of his almighty power in us, 
given us a spirit fitted thereunto ; that is, ready furnished with all things 
that are the beginnings of, and preparations to that life (which you heard 
termed ' eternal life abiding'), as also to all the duties of godliness, which 
we are to walk in here. He hath fitted us in some measure for that call- 
ing. And you see that he speaks in the time past, that his power hath (in 
time past and already) given us all and the whole of them, as to the several 
virtues, seeds, and principles of them. 

7. Add to this, seventhly, as another argument, What is that divine nature 
which is spoken of there in the fourth verse ? Not the divine being of God ; 
for that cannot be made common between God and us, or divided. It is 
therefore inherent grace, which is opposed to lusts in the words following, 
' Having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.' Nature 
is an abiding, permanent principle, carrying on the things which it is to act 
accordingly. We are not partakers of God's nature essentially, therefore 
not as a nature ; otherwise than by having his likeness or image in divine 
qualities stamped on us, and so becoming like to him, to be holy as he is 
holy, which makes us fit to have fellowship with him, and so to take in his 
glory, and to be made happy by it, which, unless we agree in a holy nature, 
and holy dispositions with him, we cannot do. And this new nature 
denotes a stable and permanent being in the soul ; as also a principle of 
working, or it were not truly a nature. Dionysius has rightly expressed it, 
Nothing can come to work or act till it hath received a nature and a being 
as the principle thereof ; so nor to act divinely or supernaturally till it hath 
a being of such a supernatural nature given to it ; and this is still the same 
with the seed of God, and eternal life abiding in us. We have by the new 
birth a supernatural being, as by the first a natural. 

8. It is a seed, a nature, a life, &c, for it is said to grow up in us ; or 
else what is meant by ' growing in grace,' and ' renewing the inner man,' 
and the like ? How can this be meant, but that as a seed, which is an 
imperfect communication of life, grows up to a stalk, and blade, and ear, 
so this of grace in us ? It is such as all other growths are, and subsists 
therefore by the increasing of those permanent qualities and virtues. A 
hiving man is not said to grow as such, or as a living man, otherwise than 
as he adds one act of life to another. A man is said to grow rich by adding 
to a heap, but a living man grows in strength and bulk answerably to the 
principle of life at first received. 

Learn what is meant by those distinguishing characters in the parable of 
the four grounds, and in that of the wise and foolish virgins. The stony 
ground's defect was this, ' they had no root in themselves,' Mark iv. 17. 
Which speaks the very language of inherent grace, which is that which is 
properly in a man's self inbred and implanted. And Job calls it ' the root 


of the matter,' Job xix. 28. The foolish virgins wanted oil in their vessels, 
when that they had oil in their lamps. The wise, on the contrary, had oil 
in their vessels, when yet their lamps were out, as in Mat. xxv. you read. 
Let any give a more rational interpretation than this, that the oil in the 
lamps is such assistances by motions and enablings as serve to hold forth 
an outward profession, and to perform the same duties, and to give the 
same light to others, which the foolish virgins had, but they had not grace 
in the heart, oil in the vessel, as a stock or treasury abiding in them, when 
that in the lamp might be out. But the wise virgins had that abiding in 
them when themselves were asleep, and their lamps clean out. It uses to 
be made an argument in this case or point, that if there were not abiding 
principles of grace, that then, when a believer is asleep, he ceaseth to be 
a holy man or a believer. If life lay only in the actings and stirrings of 
life, then when they cease there would be no * intercision of life ; and so 
eternal life, as such, should not abide in a man, as you have heard. And 
the argument is strong as to the point. But it is more strengthened by 
this scripture, Mat. xxv., speaking the same, or the like to it. There are 
Christians not only asleep, as they are men, but even as Christians also, 
and their lamps go out, their profession and actings in a great measure 
ceasing ; and yet they have oil in their vessels, grace in their hearts, ready 
to be drawn up into the lamp, and to become matter of a new shining forth 
in good works. 

It is also urged, that if it were not for such inherent principles abiding, 
a holy man could not be denominated holy, but when he acts holily ; as a 
man's countenance is not denominated ruddy for blushings or flushings, 
but from the constant constitution and complexion. And here you see a 
confirmation of the foregoing argument also, for they are denominated wise 
virgins, when yet their actings ceasing, they were as fools and not wise ; 
even as Solomon says of himself, that in the midst of his decay, his wisdom, 
that is, his grace, remained with him, Eccles. ii. 9. 

Yea, this oil in their vessels or hearts did they carry with them into glory 
with the bridegroom, and were made vessels of glory, as you read there. 
Yea, and it is said that our souls are thereby made meet for glory, Col. 
i. 12, and ' prepared for glory,' Bom. ix. 23 ; even as well as thereby they 
are ' prepared for every good work,' as vessels meet for our master's use, 
2 Tim. ii. 21. And when we die, not only our ' works do follow ' us, Bev. 
xiv. 13, as a man's treasure, which he hath wrought and gotten ; but also 
the soul itself is wrought by God here for this very purpose, to be made 
capable of a further degree of glory, as it brings grace with it into the other 
world : 2 Cor. v. 5, ' Now he that hath wrought us for the self-same 
thing is God.' Not only have we actively wrought, but we ourselves are 
here passively wrought by God, having our fruit the increase of inherent 
holiness, Bom. vi., ' and the end everlasting life.' And therefore, 2 Cor. 
v. 3, he had said we shall be clothed with glory ' if we be not found naked ;' 
that is, devoid of the image of God, but clothed upon with it, as the apostle 
elsewhere also speaks. 

* Qu. ' au ' ?— Ed. 

Chap. BEL] in our salvation. 201 


That the II"I>/ Ghost, in regenerating us, works in us an abiding principle of a 

spiritual life, demonstrated by other arguments deduced from the nature of 
the icork wrought in us. 

I havo thus far proved, by direct scriptures, that by regeneration wo 
receive an inward principle of life. I shall now use other demonstrations 
of it. 

1. If in regeneration there be a mortification of that flesh in part, which 
(as we heard) is an inherent corruption, then there is an habitual principle 
of grace, that cometh in the room of that inherent corruption that was 
destroyed. That in regeneration there is a mortification of an inherent 
corruption, is evident, because the subject of mortification is that flesh that 
dwells in us ; for if there be such a ' body of sin ' in us, it must be ' de- 
stroyed,' Rom. vi. 6. And therefore the subject hereof is called the old 
man, the body of sin, the earthly members, throughout the Scriptures. 
And also it appears by this, that if mortification were but a deading the 
soul to a present act of sinning, then it were no more but restraining grace. 
Well then, if this mortification be a destruction of an inherent corruption, 
then there is also an habitual principle of grace comes in the room of it. 
This is evident ; 

(1.) Because vivification, or quickening, is of as large an extent as mor- 
tification can be supposed ; for they are commensurable. The spirit of life 
that comes into us is proportioned, and is as large and ample as the death 
of sin, and God's work in quickening is no less than what is seen in morti- 

(2.) And secondly ; If it were otherwise, this also would follow, that so 
much of the soul in which sin was afore, and in which sin is now mortified, 
should remain (as the apostle speaks) naked and unclothed upon with 
grace, and have neither grace nor corruption in it. And so, whereas still 
a part of the soul remains corrupt habitually, this other part would remain 
unsanctified habitually. The state and condition of the soul would have 
this disadvantage in it, that unto evil it hath a bias, a poise, or (as the 
apostle expresseth it) a weight continually to pull it down, but it would 
have no inherent quality of grace to carry it God-ward, in that other part 
in which corruption is destroyed, but remain naked, and neutral, and vola- 
tile, to be tossed with the very* wind. And yet (according to those men's 
opinions that held the contrary to ours) this man must be said to be re- 
generate forsooth, in as true a sense as the part remaining corrupt in him 
is said to be corrupt. Which indeed is in effect all one as to affirm that a 
man is as truly alive that hath not a soul remaining in him, as he is dead 
whose soul is not only gone out of him, but expelled. 

(3.) Yea, thirdly ; this would necessarily follow, that so much of the 
soul as had a corrupt habit expelled, and not a new contrary habit intro- 
duced, would be just in that condition which the papists feign to have been 
due to man in innocency, even in pure naturals, without supernatural 
grace, which they say was added but as a bridle unto nature or sin. I 
speak this to those that know this opinion which our divines detest, viz., 
that the restoring of us is but to such a condition, and that this is all our 
gospel regeneration. And yet this will follow upon the assertion that 
natural corruption only is mortified, and not habitual grace restored. 
* Qu. ' every ' ? — Ed. 


(4.) Add to all these a fourth argument. If grace wrought in us be the 
perfect curing and healing of corruption, then if flesh be a corrupt principle 
inherent, so must grace likewise be an inherent principle. There is a 
habitual aversion from God and a conversion to the creature, a frame of 
heart set and inclined that way ; and it is not exciting grace will propor- 
tionately cure an habitual distemper, for as in the bodily, so in soul diseases, 
contraries are cured but by contraries. If therefore Christ comes with full 
healing in his wings, and sanctifies throughout, he doth cure habitual cor- 
ruption with habitual impressions on the mind and will. 

2. A second demonstration is taken from the parallel of the new creature 
to the image of God, which at and with man's first creation was given to 
him, and which he hath now left. It is evident it consisted not in bare 
acts of holiness, for he is said to be created in it. It was therefore as well 
produced by creation as the soul of man, and concreated therewith. And 
he is said to be created in it, before he put forth any act of knowledge, or 
righteousness ; and yet he lost it by sinning. What can that be but some- 
thing that is distinguished from the soul and the faculties of it, for it was 
lost ; and distinct also from all acts of the soul, or actings upon him, for 
an image notes a thing permanent and inherent. I say what could this be 
but habitual inclinations and dispositions unto whatsoever was holy and 
good, insomuch as all holiness radically dwelt in him ? The apostle informs 
us, that the image of God at first was ' in righteousness and true holiness,' 
Eph. iv. 24, and Col. iii. 10. Now the same holiness and righteousness 
is required of us, when we are called to turn to God. God calls for his 
old debt ; yea, and it is as expressly said that this new image is created 
after God, in answerableness unto God's creating that image at first. And 
surely to confirm this I may add, 1. That if original righteousness be still 
required in us, then habitual holiness ; else the want of it would be no sin. 
Again, secondly ; Christ, in being a quickening Spirit, doth as much for us 
in respect of God's image as Adam should have done if he had not fallen. 
Adam would have conveyed it to his children long before they could have 
put forth any act ; therefore sure in quickening us Christ must convey at 
least the same, if not higher ; else God doth not so much for us in restor- 
ing his image, as he did at our first creation. Yea Adam had in conveying 
it, if he had stood, done more than Christ doth for us. Yea, and therefore 
when the creation of this image is spoken of, it is not only in one place 
said to be, hg l^iyvueiv, for knowledge, that is, to enable to know ; and there- 
fore notes a new created power, but it is expressly termed a workmanship 
1 created to good works,' Eph. ii. 10. It is a whole frame of new powers, 
to enable a man to act that for which good works are ordained. 

Yea, further, if the new creature be truly the image of God's holiness, 
then there is a permanent holiness of nature, or divine nature, as it is called. 
For God is first holy in his nature and in himself, and then is holy and 
righteous in all his ways and works ad extra. He is good, and so doth 
good, Ps. cxix. 68, and the thing is undeniable as to his transient actings ; 
for if God had never made or done any good to the creatures, or given his 
law, or sent his Son, yet he had been as good in his nature, and was so 
from everlasting. Yea, some attributes which yet were in him, as power, 
mercy, &c, had never put forth acts, &c, had there not been creatures. 

3. A third demonstration of it is drawn from what is said of some infants, 
when it is expressly said of such, that they are sanctified in the womb. 
So it is said of John the Baptist, Luke i. 15, that ' he was filled with the 
Holy Ghost,' as sanctifying of him even from the womb. He puts that in 

Chap. IV.] in ouk salvation. 203 

emphatically. And to bo filled with the Spirit hath a respect to that great 
measure of the fruits of the Spirit wrought in him then ; they were not 
actings holily, therefore habitual holiness. And because there was that 
in him which was born a spirit of the Spirit, in relation thereunto it is said 
of him, ver. 80, that ' he grew and was strengthened in spirit,' that is, in 
that inner man begotten at first, which now grew up and was actually 
strengthened and enlarged. And there is this further confirmation of this, 
that there is in infants a capacity of this habitual holiness. 

For first; In the state of innocency they should have had that image of 
God (spoken of afore) conveyed by birth, which Adam had by creation, for 
he was to beget in his likeness. 

Secondly ; They have, now man is fallen, the image of inherent corrup- 
tion conveyed. And they should not have been capable of sin inherent 
upon Adam's fall, if by the law of nature they had not been capable of hav- 
ing inherent holiness conveyed by birth. For sin and the evil is conveyed 
but upon the equity of that law, that the contrary good should have been 
conveyed, if Adam had stood. And it is withal as certain, that so far as 
they are capable of sin, whilst infants, they are so far capable of the con- 
trary holiness ; and therefore of habitual holiness, as well as of habitual 
sin, the venom of which we all feel in our bowels from the womb. 


That it is necessary, and congruous to the nature of things, that such inward 
permanent principles should be wrought in us by the Holy Ghost, to enable 
us to live holily. 

I shall now give the reasons for this, both from the congruity and neces- 
sity of the thing. 

1. It was meet and congruous, if not necessary, that God should proceed 
by the same law in the work of his new creation, that he doth in his first 
creation. Now take the law that is common unto the whole creation of 
God, and it will be found true upon a particular survey, that all acts or 
workings of any kind, in any creature, have an inbred principle, suiting 
and enabling the creature that acts or works thereunto. God moves all his 
creatures to their ends by inbred principles put into them. God in the 
whole creation (qui disponit omnia suaviter) not only or barely assists or 
concurs with his creatures, by a moving of them unto all their actions, but 
furnisheth them with powers and virtues inbred, that are the principles of 
such motions, by which they are inclined to such and such things, that so 
their actions may be connatural to them. If a stone moves downward, it 
hath a natural poise : if the soul understand, it is not barely by light shot 
into it, but there is an understanding power, faculty, or ability inbred, 
which beasts want ; of whom it is said they have no understanding. If 
the soul joined to the body sees, it is by an eye endowed with a visive 
faculty ; and so it is in hearing too. Again, in other creatures, you see an 
inherent instinct put into them, guiding and swaying them to such or such 
a particular action ; as you see in bees in framing their combs, and in birds 
building their nests, and bearing love to their young ; by which also (as the 
prophet says) • the stork knows its appointed time.' It is something inbred 
and interwoven with their nature. Even in arts and sciences acquired, 
there are imperfect abilities in nature, perfected by use, yet still so as there 


are principles, though imperfect, which are the foundations of them. He 
that invented painting first, or that hath attained the art of it, had images in 
the fancy, disposing him to begin to draw the pictures. And this also is the 
reason that some are excellent in one trade more than in another. In like 
manner, if a natural man performs any action morally good, he hath an 
inbred principle of light of conscience, impressions of moral virtues, and 
the law written in his heart, that moves and instigates him thereunto ; and 
it is an abiding principle in him : Rom. ii. 14, 15, ' Men do by nature the 
things of the law, which shew the effect or substance of the law written in 
their hearts.' Now it might be shewn that the new habiliments of the new 
creation are assimilated unto all these, the Holy Ghost having regulated 
and reduced the new creature to this common law. 

1. It is like to the natural powers of seeing and understanding. 

2. It is like to an instinct put into irrational creatures, who are taught 
of God to love their young. ' As concerning brotherly love, I shall not 
need to write unto you,' says the apostle, 1 Thes. iv. 9, ' for you yourselves 
are taught of God to love one another.' It is opposed to external teach- 
ings, and referred to the rank of instincts or endowments. As when God 
teacheth a brother to love his brother, the mother to love the child, or as 
God is said to teach the ploughman discretion and skill, Isa. xxviii. 26, in 
like manner all that come to Christ are said to be taught of God, John 
vi. 44. 45, by an impression on their spirits, such as the beasts had that 
came to the ark. He parallels it also with the law written in the heart by 
nature, yea, makes it infinitely the greater work, when he says, ' I will 
write my law in their hearts, and put it into their inward parts,' Jer. xxxi. 
33, 34. 

But although these are of themselves arguments, yet they are remoter 
confirmations unto that which I intend to make forth, viz., that the reason 
of the congruity or necessity is the same in the new creature as in the old. 
Yea, that there is a greater necessity in this than in the other, and that the 
soul should be no less enabled and furnished to spiritual things than all 
other creatures are unto their actings, which generally and universally is 
by having an internal principle enabling them so to act. 

1. There is as much reason and necessity it should be thus in the new 
creation, as in the old. 

(1.) Because this rule holds both in the second creation and in the first, 
that everything that acts should act according to its kind ; and they are 
differing inbred principles that put the difference of kind between one 
creature and another. Every creature hath a proper, special nature, that 
doth constitute its kind, and then the fruits and effects are answerable 
thereto. You have this law, Gen. i. 21 and 24, concerning fishes, and 
beasts, and plants ; trees bring forth differing fruits because of differing 
kinds given them, and that depends upon inbred principles, which are 
existent in them, even in winter, when they do not bring forth. Our 
Saviour Christ bringeth this very law of the first creation into the second, 
and urgeth it upon the Pharisees : Mat. vii. 17, 18, ' Every good tree bringeth 
forth good fruit, but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit. A good tree 
cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good 
fruit.' And then in Matthew xii. 33 Christ says, ' Either make the tree 
good, and its fruit good, or else make the tree corrupt, and his fruit corrupt ; 
for the tree is known by his fruit.' Wherein (although Christ urgeth not 
regeneration, but conviction) ' make the tree,' &c, that is, acknowledge 
yourselves to be bad when your fruits are bad, and so on the contrary ; yet 

Chap. IV.] a our salvation. 205 

the ground of his conviction lies invincibly in this truth, that ere a man 
can bring forth a good work he must be made inwardly and radically good, 
for acts follow nature. Also in another place he says, ' Can you gather 
grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles ? Can you that are evil speak good 
things ? ' 

(2.) It is so, because to have inbred principles of actings maketh the 
creature to act connaturally and sweetly. Thus though a mother, as a 
woman, hath love in her, yet to act the more naturally in the loving her 
child, a special instinct is requisite. The sun rejoiceth to run his race, and 
so all creatures rejoice to keep God's ordinances to this [day, Ps. cxix., 
because God hath put inbred principles in them so to do. Now of all act- 
ings of his creatures, God would have it so that this of souls in gracious 
actings should be most connatural, and done with the greatest alacrity, and 
that 'his people should be a willing people,' Ps. ex., and be acted by a 
free spirit, Ps. li., not by constraint, but of a willing mind. God would 
have the new creature so to move itself in its actings as to be the inward 
formal principle of that work, that it might in that respect be termed its 
own. And therefore as all other creatures have to their actings inbred 
principles to enable them unto their actings, so it was most meet that the 
soul of man, and especially the will, should have a bias clapped on it, a poise, 
an inclination, or (as the apostle's phrase is) ' a readiness,' whereof God 
accepts more than of the deed, 2 Cor. viii. 10-12. 

2. There is a far greater necessity for the soul to have new principles, 
abilities given to act holily and spiritually, than at the first creation to act 
naturally. And the reason is far more strong, because the acts are spiritual 
and supernatural, and so are the objects. God and Christ, as they are 
revealed in the gospel, are supernatural unto the natural powers and faculties 
of the soul, and there is no proportion between them. There is not only 
such a disproportion as the bat's eye hath unto the sun, but as a blind 
man's eye is to the sun. In man's corrupt state, yea, and at man's best 
estate in innocency, though God, as revealed in the creature, and in outward 
effects, was the natural object of man's understanding, that is, which was 
naturally ordained for it by the due of creation, yet God, as in himself to be 
revealed, had that disproportion unto that estate, that a spirit or an angel, 
not appearing in some outward effect, hath to the ej*e of a seeing man. The 
most quick-sighted in that case must have a new eye, a spiritual eye made, 
or the same eye endowed with new spiritual power. And therefore the 
Scripture speaks of this as giving a new visive power, as ' eyes to see, and 
ears to hear,' and 1 John v. 20 it is said, ' He hath given an understand- 
ing to know him that is true,' speaking both of God and Christ. It is not 
merely to relieve the weakness of natural sight, as when one is to see an 
object far distant by the help of an optic ; or as when Stephen was enabled 
to see and behold Christ's body in heaven, w r hich of itself is visible, as the 
sun is, though disproportioned in excellency ; but it is spiritual sight given 
wholly to enable the eye to see the spiritual objects, and to take them in. 
And therefore the phrase which the Scripture everywhere useth is, that 
else men cannot see them, nor know them, nor receive them, as hath been 
said. And therefore there is a necessity of infusion of such spiritual 
abilities, for there are no principles in man for him to begin with, by which 
they should be acquired. 

But here a further question hath been made : Whether the necessity of 
such inherent principles as these is such, that God by his absolute power 
might not raise up, and draw forth out of the soul supernatural spiritual 


acts, without infusing such new principles as powers into the sou! first ? 
Whether God's motions and excitations, and actings upon the understand- 
ing and will, might not elevate them unto such acts as Stephen's eye, with- 
out a new power of seeing, was elevated and raised up to see Christ's body 
in heaven ? 

I answer this ; that it is not for the understanding of us poor creatures 
to forge shackles, or set limits to the absolute power of God, or to say he 
can work this and not that. Yet I think this may in the first place safely 
be said, that, 

1. As to the privative part, there must at least be a destruction of that 
habit of sin in respect of the strength and the impression which it had in 
the soul afore. For if the soul be naturally full, and all over possessed with 
nothing but flesh, according to what is in John hi. 6, ' That which is born 
of the flesh is flesh ;' then whilst it doth so remain it can never be brought 
to act the contrary, no, not in the least spiritual act, for there is something 
within that hinders. Whilst the mind inwardly remains fleshly, it cannot 
be ' subject to the law of God,' Rom viii. 7. That word speaks the com- 
mon language of nature, that whilst such a form remains, and fully pos- 
sesseth the mind, it cannot be brought to act the contrary. God indeed 
can change fire into water in an instant, and so that which was fire shall 
moisten ; but whilst it remains fire, and is continued to be such, we may 
say that it cannot do so. Indeed, it may be kept from acting as fire, as the 
fire of Nebuchadnezzar's furnace was, but it cannot be brought to do the 
contrary. And thus the Scripture pronounceth of the fleshly mind, remain- 
ing such, that it cannot be subject to God, and that ' those who are in the 
flesh cannot please God,' Rom. viii. 7, 8. Yea, even of a regenerate man, 
so far as flesh is in him, so far as he is still possessed with flesh, the apostle 
says he cannot will or do good, Gal. v. 17. It is not only that he wants an 
ability, but he hath an habitual contrariety, an enmity, as one contrary form 
hath to another ; and that contrariety therefore must necessarily be destroyed 
and expelled, that the soul, being so far freed from it, may be capable to 
act holily. So then at least we may say, that that part of regeneration we 
call mortification, or (as it is expressed in Ezekiel) the ' taking away the 
heart of stone,' is an habitual permanent work absolutely necessary. 

If it be said (as it is by some) that if Adam's soul, being wholly filled 
with holiness, fell into an act of sin without a principle of sinning first in 
it, therefore a soul, possessed with nothing but flesh and enmity to God, 
may be elevated to a supernatural act. 

I reply, first, That when Adam's soul fell into that act of sinning, the 
holiness that was in him was that very moment expelled ; and so then the 
parallel here must be, that at the same instant the soul is raised to holi- 
ness, the contrary corruption must be so far expelled also. And as, in the 
act of sin, Adam's soul slipped the collar of its habitual grace, and so ran 
away from God, so must the heart, as it is acted holy, slip from so much 
of its inbred corruption at the same instant. But if you will suppose that 
corruption doth remain in its full strength and possession, it is such an 
uncircumcision as keeps the soul in an impotency to any such act. 

But, secondly, The fuller answer is this, that there is not the same rea- 
son of raising up man to act holy, as there is of his falling into sin. For 
the possibility of his falling into sin lies in his deficiency and mutability as 
he was a creature, and in his aptness to fall, which his will was subject to, 
merely as it is a creature made out of nothing, and so its habit of grace 
doth perish by that deficiency when it falls out. Solum liberum arbitrium 

Chap. IV.] in our salvation. 207 

sii/ficiebat ad malum was Augustine's constant cry, tlio deficient will of man 
need no innate principle to sin, its frailty was sufficient, or rather, insuffi- 
cient to it. But it is not so in the power to do good, as it is in the trans- 
gression ; as in another like case the apostle speaks. To sin, the soul need 
not he first made sinful, to constitute it formally an intrinsecal agent in it, 
for this may arise from a defect ; but if man will become a supernatural 
worker, and as an intrinsecal agent formally produce a good work, he must 
have such a divine form, or nature, first infused in him, or it will not be 
natural in him and genuine, nor is he capable to do it. 

2. As to the positive part, viz., the necessity of the infusion of a new 
principle. There are many that deny that any more than a help and a 
supernatural assistance is absolute needful, because the almighty power of 
God can and doth (say they) supply the room of such an inward principle, 
and so raise up and actuate the understanding or will without it. Fcr (say 
they) in the soul God finds a faculty of understanding, capable of that 
spiritual knowledge of him ; and the habit, or the new principle you call 
for (say they), serves but to enable or elevate that understanding to take 
into it God in a spiritual manner. Now that which your supposed habit 
contributes hereto, why may not (say they) the power of God supply by a 
mere acting of that understanding, and raising it up to such acts by an 
almighty motion of his joining with it and overpowering the soul to it ? 
There is this difference (say they) between the necessity of an understand- 
ing faculty and of this new spiritual principle ; that if we suppose that first 
wanting, then all must say the power of God doth not supply the room of 
it. God doth not understand for us, but man understands only with his 
own understanding, nor without an understanding can he understand, as a 
beast, remaining a beast, cannot. But now for that other case of a habit, 
that being (say they) but a help to the understanding, may be supplied ; for 
what help a second cause affordeth, that the power of God alone can, if he 
please, supply without it. 

But if the Scripture itself, and the Spirit that wrote it, and also works 
all grace in the heart, and knows best the proportion of things, do speak 
of this new inward principle of habitual grace, in the same language that 
it doth of this power of the natural understanding itself, or as it doth of 
the visive faculty whereby we see, terming it an eye to see, an ear to hear, 
a heart to understand, terming it also an understanding given, that we 
may know : then even that also is to be judged to be to the soul, in under- 
standing supernatural things, of the same nature and necessity, that an 
understanding itself is to know natural things. Yea, if it be a principle of 
life unto the soul of one that is dead, as a new life to a dead eye, as in 
Scripture it is termed (Eph, ii. 1, 5, compared), and if it is expressly termed 
eternal life itself inherent in a man, 1 John hi. 15, which doth constitute 
him formally a living man, in respect of that kind of life which is spiritual 
and supernatural : if this be so, then upon the same necessity, that an 
understanding faculty is required to a natural act, this new understanding, 
power, or spirit (as my text calls it), this new heart and new spirit to un- 
derstanding things supernatural withal, is as absolutely required. All 
grant this, that though God can give to this stone an understanding, yet 
he cannot be supposed to make a stone to understand without an under- 
standing faculty. Now in order unto an act of understanding spiritual 
things, this new principle infused is so styled, and is really in its propor- 
tion such, so as without it the soul is said to have no understanding, but 
to be blind, yea dead, as to these things that are spiritual. God can and 


did take a body of red earth, and breathed into it the breath of life, and 
caused it to live ; but it was not possible to have made and constituted it 
a living soul, as the Scripture terms Adam, without having a living soul put 
into it, and united to it, for a thing cannot be caused to live without a spirit 
of life. Now so it is here, as those scriptures clearly shew. We must not 
call these new principles, powers, or faculties in the soul, in the same 
respect, or sense, that the understanding is in and to the soul. For the 
understanding is one and the same understanding faculty, and so is the 
subject of that spiritual act, after regeneration, that it was afore ; and it is 
the same understanding that understood other things afore, or that doth 
now understand other things besides spiritual things after regeneration. 
But by analogy it is affirmed to be a new power and a new understanding, 
in this respect, because the soul, which hath but one and the same faculty 
of understanding, must be enlivened with this grace as another life to it, 
ere it can spiritually understand. That grace puts a new ability into the 
understanding, as necessary as the understanding itself is to understand 
withal, as all the scriptures shew. 

If indeed such principles as acquired habits do serve to give only facility 
or easiness in working, or serve but as spectacles to an eye that can see 
already, only to help it to see better and more clearly, or to see what else 
at such a distance it could not see, then the work might be supplied only 
with God's external actings. But these principles of grace do give potent iam 
simpliciter, as some schoolmen speak, power simply and absolutely. Yea, 
and say I, it is not only analogous to a new power, but it is to the soul more 
than a new power, and of a sublimer nature, and greater worth than all men's 
understandings devoid of it. It is ' spirit' (says the text), which is more 
than a power. It is ' a divine nature,' which is more than a natural power. 
It is indeed as the soul is to a dead eye, when it comes to enliven and in- 
form it, which is more than to give an eye simply or barely organised, and 
fitted to see. Or at least it is, if not as the soul, yet as the life itself, by 
which, as diffused from the soul, the eye is made a living eye, and so im- 
mediately capable of that vital or living act of seeing ; and by reason of 
which it is a seeing eye, a living eye, when yet it ceaseth to behold 
anything, as when closed, and in sleep. It is the seed of God, which 
(as the seed of any other thing) hath the virtue of that which it cometh 
from in such a manner as the soul itself hath not, though it cometh from 

That which hath much conduced to misguide the schoolmen* in this great 
point, hath been, 

1. Their addictedness to the natural power of man's will and understand- 
ing, that in supernatural acts it should share with the grace of God. They 
have therefore easily been led to judge that these natural principles, strongly 
assisted, and only axtrinsecally acted by God as an efficient and mover with 

* Aquinas distinguished the necessity of a principle of grace, and that of ordinary 
habit thus : of the first, ut intellectus fiat polens ; of the other, ut intclkctus fiat poten- 
tior, 1 par. qusest. 12, artic. 5. 

Suarez, when he comes to the decision of this, treads upon ice ; and is loath to deny 
these principles of grace to he potentiai, because they give new power to the soul ; and 
yet he must have the natural power of the soul itself to be a sharer with them in 
their motion, supernaturally, and therefore concludes it thus. Quod si quis, de nomine 
magis quam de re contender!*, dicathos habitus, quatenus dant poleslatem agendi, vocandos 
esse potential ; rcspondebimus saltern non esse potentias integras sen completas ; imo nee 
dare inchoalionem, ut sic dicam, et radicalem potestatcm : at dare quasi complementum 
potestatis. — Lib. 6. de grat. C. 5. Num. 12. 

Chap. IV.J in our salvation. 209 

them, might produce such acts : and that such divine habits as graco are 
only required to make them more natural to the powers of the soul. 

2. The schoolmen's mistake in this point ariseth from their opinion, that 
the natural understanding and will in the soul are the root or principle of 
whatever life or act, either spiritual or natural, the soul produceth 
living agent. So that it is the natural understanding, and other faculties 
in the soul, which (as they speak), are the sole principium vital-, that is, 
the living principle, or seat and subject of all life. The soul, and the active 
faculties and powers thereof, are those that live and have that life in I 
and so live this supernatural life. And this is proper to that which lives, 
that it intrinsecally moves itself; for so you know all living things do. and 
not from an extrinsecal force or power acting them, as stones are moved. 

And therefore (say they), the soul and its powers having an inward prin- 
ciple of self-motion, there is nothing more required than that God should 
move and act them. But if they consulted the Scriptures they would find, 
that that which is termed the vital or life- principle of this kind of life 
spiritual and eternal in the soul, is not the natural powers of the soul ; but 
that all the life-principle the soul hath in understanding or willing, is natu- 
rally deadness unto this life ; and that the grace infused is called eternal 
life, &c. It is true, indeed, the subject or root upon which this new prin- 
ciple, or power of spiritual life is engrafted, is the soul, and thereby it is 
diffused to the faculties of it, and so the natural soul is in that respect 
absolutely necessary as the subject of this new spiritual life (of which a 
beast, remaining a beast, is not capable), and so the natural soul and its 
faculties are as the root and foundation, or as the stock that the other new 
principle of life is engrafted upon. But still that which is the formal next 
complete principle or power of active life spiritual, as such, is that grace 
which God engrafts upon that stock, yea, and the whole of the soul's 
principle of spiritual life doth lie and consist therein : though still if 
this grace were not in such a subject, viz., a reasonable soul, that spi- 
ritual principle of life would not be a life at all. Thus far indeed the 
natural powers do contribute unto it. So then in producing th?se super- 
natural acts of knowing or loving God, there are three principles to be 

(1.) Principium quod, the principle which; that is, which is the seat and 
subject of all ; and that is the soul, and its natural faculties, as they have 
a natural life in them. 

(2.) There is principium quo, the principle of life by which the soul acts, 
and from which, as it acts spiritually, it hath a spiritual life : and that, 
say we, is grace infused, which is termed eternal life in a man. 

(3.) There is God, who is the fountain and efficient cause and worker 
both of that principle of life in the soul, and then of all the acts from it, 
by his motions, influences, and helps, and elevations, and raisings up of 
that life to act according to its kind ; which actings, notwithstanding this 
infused life in us, do depend upon God's power to work them in us, Phil, 
ii. 13, as much as the infusion of life itself doth. 

This being thus explained, herein lies to me the necessity of such an 
inward principle of spiritual life to be infused (besides what life of under- 
standing or willing the soul hath of itself, as also besides God's assisting 
motions and strengthenings), that if any soul be ever brought to put forth 
any act of spiritual supernatural life, that soul must be constituted or made 
first a supernatural living agent or worker: it must be put into that order 
or rank of agents or workers, and thereby so be fitted to move frou . and 

VOL. VI. ° 


within itself, as a supernatural living agent or worker, that so all such acts 
of life as proceed from it may come to be denominated, or called its own, 
as acts of a creature that now lives such a supernatural kind of life, and 
so that every holy action may be termed the act of its own life, when it so 
works. And the reason is clear from the analogy or like proportion of any 
other living agent in any kind. For if any act of any living creature be 
accounted a living act, or a life- act, that creature must first be a living 
creature, endued with that kind of life which the act itself is of, which it 
doth put forth. If it be an act of natural or sensitive life (as to see, hear, 
&c), as in a beast, necessarily the beast must be a living beast, or crea- 
ture ; living, I say, within itself that kind of life it putteth forth in that 
act, or that action cannot be a living action. Now then, by the same rea- 
son and proportion (for such as the act is, such is and must be the prin- 
ciple that works it, which holds in this and other kinds of life whatever), 
if the soul come ever to produce a snpernatural-life-act (as I may call it), 
it is absolutely necessaiy it be constituted and put into the rank of a super- 
natural-life-agent, to have a principle of supernatural life wholly anew com- 
municated unto it, over and above its being in the order or rank of nature's 
catalogue a life-agent. And though men talk that the soul, with its facul- 
ties, is a living principle, yet still it is not a living principle supernatu- 
rally, otherwise than life, eternal life ; and the soul, with all its faculties, 
remaining purely natural, is dead in respect to that life. 

Another thing that deceived many of the schoolmen is, that they take 
the similitude of acquired habits, and make the measure by which to judge 
of these infused habits, and so imagine that the natural faculties are the 
immediate subjects of the infused principles of grace, and not the soul 
itself, even as those natural faculties are of such acquired habits ; and so 
they thought these infused habits of grace should be no otherwise required, 
in order unto working, than those other acquired. Now it is certain and 
granted, that God's power extraordinary can in an instant supply the defect 
of such kind of habits, only by assisting acts, without infusing any new 
principle. Thus whereas man's tongue is apt to learn, and acquire by 
pains and use, any tongue or language in use, yet God in the primitive times 
did, without infusing the settled permanent habit of speaking such and 
such a tongue, assist a man's mind for that present, whilst the Spirit acted 
him, to speak or interpret that language, as if he had learned it by use. 
Thus some spake with tongues who did not understand the tongue, and 
some interpreted a tongue that were not able to speak it ; as might seem 
by some passages in 1 Cor. xiv. Now, indeed, if those supernatural piin- 
ciples we speak of, were, at the highest supposition, but the infusion of 
such abilities as these, that might be otherwise acquired in time, by the 
natural powers of the soul by use, then indeed the opposite assertion might 
pass, that God could (by his assisting power alone) supply without such a 
principle, what the infusion of the principle served for ; because the natu- 
ral soul, as such, did hold a proportion to such acts, if it were acted and 
assisted by God ; for as it is a natural soul, it might acquire them of itself. 
But it is not so in the principles of grace, for they belong wholly to another 
rank, and order, and kind of life, as hath been said. They are not such 
superficiary, washy tinctures, or additional impressions on the soul, such 
as those other habits which are seated but finger deep (as when a man's 
fingers, fancy, and memory have acquired a skill to play on musical instru- 
ments, musical tunes, which have no deeper subject than the finger, fancy, 
and memory), but this heavenly tincture goes deeper. It is not as an ordi- 

Chap. V.] in our salvation. 211 

ikuv accident seated immediately in an accident, that is, tlic immediate 
subject of graces are not the faculties of the understanding and will, as they 
are powers and accidents themselves in the soul; but this heaven-bom 
image and likeness of God (which is more worth than all nun's souls), is 
immediately by God diffused into the soul itself; and the soul is as imme- 
diately the subject of it as of those powers themselves. It is not in the 
soul only as paint or white in a wall, in the outward superficies of it ; but 
as light in the body of the sun, and as the glory that is in the spiritual 
bodies of men at the resurrection. ' The God of peace sanctify you 
throughout' (says the apostle) ' in body, soul, and spirit ;' yea, it seizeth 
on ' the spirit of the mind itself,' Eph. iv. 23, that is, if there be anything 
pure, the soul is throughout immediately steeped and dyed in it ; it hath it 
by infusion (as the school word is), or it is shed abroad in the heart, as the 
Scripture saith. It is in the soul as a new soul or life to it, and it then 
diffuseth itself to those powers that are therein : and in the understanding 
it becomes a spiritual understanding, and the light of life : in the will it 
becomes love, an infusion of love to that God above itself, whose image it 
is. And so it is indeed a thing (which I have all this while pleaded it to 
be) that deserves as much to be styled a new power, and life in the soul, 
as those natural faculties themselves are said to be. Neither is it beholden 
to them for its interest and station in the soul, but can vie with them for 
immediateness of inherency. Yea, it inspiviteth and teacheth them, and 
actuates them with new powers of an endless life, which they had not 
afore. And so by this means, this new principle of grace becomes an ear 
to hear, an eye to see, an understanding to know spiritual things, as spi- 
ritual, in as real a manner as these other natural powers of understanding 
and will are, in their kind of life, able to perceive natural things. 


That the new creature wrought in us by the Spirit of God is a change of heart. 

A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit icill I put within you ; and 
I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I icill give you a heart 
of flesh. And I will put my Spirit within you, and cause you to ivalk in my 
statutes, and ye shall keep my judgments, and do them. — Ezek. XXXVI. 
26, 27. 

The glory of God's grace in the application of salvation unto us in this 
life, and the commitment of it to the Holy Ghost, you find it put together 
in this one scripture. Here is, 

1. A creating and issuing new abilities, and vivific principles of spiritual 
life, whereby the soul is quickened and enabled to act as a supernatural 
agent, or worker of all sorts of spiritual works and operations, which is here 
in Ezekiel said to be the giving a new heart and a new spirit, together with 
taking away the heart of stone, which is as truly a work of omnipotency as 
to turn a stone into flesh, into living flesh, or to transform stones into bread 
(upon doing which the devil himself would have believed Christ to be the 
Son of God) ; or of stones to raise up children to Abraham, whereby John 
the Baptist celebrateth God's omnipotent power. 

2. Here is set forth the Holy Ghost's effectual drawing forth, and effica- 
ciously working every such spiritual act, causing us to walk in his ways, 


both by his giving Tb Qtkth, ' to will and to do of his good pleasure,' 
Philip, ii. 13. 

3. Here is the giving this person of the Holy Ghost unto our persons, 
to dwell in us for ever, as the author of both of these, which is expressed 
in those words, ' I will put my Spirit within you,' which comes in between 
the former two. It is he who gives us the new heart at first ; and having 
predisposed and prepared us thereby, causeth us to ' walk,' and do ; that is, 
draws forth that new heart into act. 

The words of my text, Ezek. xxxvi. 26, 27, are promises of the covenant 
of grace concerning all that is wrought in us by God, from first to last, 
unto salvation, summed up to two heads : 1. The giving a new heart, &c. ; 
2. The intent of that gift, viz., to enable us to do, and to walk, which is a 
continuation of doing. The first is the principle of doing, placed first in 
order, and accordingly given first, as the foundation of subsequent doing 
and walking ever after. There is also the Spirit of God, over and besides 
that new spirit promised, given to them, to cause them to act and do, 
when once the new heart and spirit is given. And although the Holy 
Spirit of God is promised, to cause them to do, as without whom the new 
heart alone would not produce those new actions, yet so as withal the 
Spirit himself doth not cause us to do without a new heart first given ; and 
unless the old heart, the heart of stone (the principle of the former con- 
trary walking and doing), be removed and taken awaj T , as being that con- 
trary principle that letteth, and would let for ever, if it continued in its old 
full being and strength. The Holy Ghost is the extrinsecal cause of the 
operation therefore said to be put ; but the new heart is the intrinsecal 
cause of our doing, though as acted by the Holy Ghost. 

And these things are consonant to reason and scriptures. 

1. The heart doth, in the language of nature, speak the primary intrin- 
secal cause of motion and action, being the first seat and forge of all the 
vital spirits by which we act and move. And so in the soul there is that 
answers to it, which is the spring ; and actions are the streams that issue 
from thence : ' Above all keeping keep thy heart, for out of it are the issues 
of life,' that is, the course and actings of a man's life, which are as issues 
from the heart as a fountain. The walking and doing here are not the new 
heart itself, for that (as was noted) is a new gift and benefit distinct there- 
from. Nor is the Spirit's acting our natural faculties and principles already 
in our hearts, the whole or sole work on God's part in us. Nor consists 
it only in actings (which the promise of the 27th verse is wholly spent 
upon), but that verse before, the 26th, is taken up as much with the pro- 
mise of giving a new heart and removing the old, and is a promise of as 
much grace as this latter in verse 27. 

2. It is true that the natural faculties of the mind, and will, and affec- 
tions, are in Scriptures termed the heart, or connotated at least when the 
heart is spoken of; and therefore they must be taken in and supposed 
here, for they are the subject and intrinsecal principle of all the actings of 
a man in doing whatever is done, be it good or evil. And this is common 
to all men, whether regenerate or unregenerate, in their doing good or 
evil, to do it with their hearts. And therefore Solomon admonisheth, Prov. 
iv. 23, 'Keep thy heart, for out of it are the issues of life,' which reason 
in general concerns all men, that such as the heart is, such is the course of 
life. He compares the heart to the fountain, and the actions to the streams 
that issue out from it : ' A good man,' says Christ, Mat. xii. 35, ' out of 
the pood treasure of the heart bringeth forth good things : and an evil 

Chap. V.] in ovb salvation. 213 

man out of the evil treasure bringeth forth evil things.' So aa a heart to do 
is ascribed to either of them. 

8. I shall confirm this by other scriptures. You have a workmanship 
said to he created unto good works: Eph. ii. 10, 'For we are his work- 
manship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before 
ordained that we should walk in them,' Here is a whole frame or wonyta 
created and wrought in us, in order unto our working or acting, God having 
ordained the one for the other, viz., those works for us to walk in (as it 
follows), and this workmanship to bring forth those works. You read in 
like manner of the image of God created, h; exiyvueiv, ' unto knowledge,' 
for it is wrought to that end. And it is more expressly said, 1 John v. 20, 
' He hath given us an understanding, that we may know him that is true.' 

Another scripture is that passage in 1 John iii. 9, ' Whosoever is born 
of God doth not commit sin ; for his seed remaineth in him : and he can- 
not sin, because he is born of God.' The words I lay hold on for my pur- 
pose are what that seed of God that remains in a man born of God should 
be. I might annex this argument, to be drawn from the interpretation of 
these passages, unto the first argument I drew before from John iii. 6, 
that it is a birth, a thing born. And this which I shall now urge, you 
may well put to that, for it seconds it ; and they do mutually confirm each 

The scope is, to set out the difference between an unregenerate man and 
a regenerate (under the dominion of grace), in point of sinning. Yea, and 
it may be extended to the differing case of Adam in his first sinning. He 
mentions indeed only the case of a regenerate man, but asserts concerning 
him : 1. That a man born of God commits not sin ; that is, persists not in 
any constant track or course of sinning ; for committing sin here is meant 
in the same sense as that in the words afore, ' He that doth righteousness is 
righteous,' is meant, which position is further amplified that ' he cannot 
sin.' 2. The reason of which is resolved into this, ' because he is bom of 
God,' he hath by and from that his birth, a seed of and from God remain- 
ing in him ; that is, he hath a new principle of holiness, a divine nature, 
and indoles, which God that begat him, and formed anew for himself, main- 
tains in his heart, out of his gracious favour towards that grace, so as to 
continue the station and residence of the substance and matter of it in the 
heart, whilst j T et its activity may be, or is weakened and abated by the pre- 
vailing of the contrary corruption (that is in the soul) through the will's 
indulging to it. And yet so far as that seed and principle in the solid sub- 
stance of it thus remains, this corrupt will, nor all a man's own lust that 
tempts him, cannot employ or draw this seed to close with that sin, but it 
stands off, and is. averse, and co-operates not — ' It is not I, but sin that 
dwelleth in me ' — yea, more or less it lusteth against it. But it is not thu3 
with an unregenerate man's will, nor was it thus with Adam in his first 
sinning. But all his principles and concreated habits of holiness inherent, 
were by one single act of sinning, through the mere mutability and verti- 
bility of his will (suppose his sin had been the least sin), utterly driven out 
of his heart and destroyed at once. The reason whereof lay in this : the 
terms of his state then being the covenant of works, the curse of that law 
in threatening — ' In that day thou sinnest thou diest the death ' — took hold 
of his soul, and began to have its full process and execution against all that 
spiritual life that was in him, and raised out the whole of what was holy in 
him, which was the best of his lives, to whose keeping the whole stock of 
his grace was committed and betrusted ; and he was no more able (wchn 


he sinned) to keep the least mite thereof to remain still in him, than a man 
that is stabbed to the heart is able to keep his soul in his body. But a 
stronger law is now, under grace, in force over men that are born of God, 
who are ' not under the law, but under grace ; ' which law is, that the 
strength of this inherent grace is the gospel of grace, which preserves this 
seed in the heart in the midst of sinning, so as that grace in the soul is not 
wholly expelled upon every sin the will consents to, as it is acknowledged 
by all. And who can set or put the limits of the difference, that in some 
sins to which the will yet consents, sin should not totally expel that seed 
for that present ; and in other sinnings, perpetrated by the will's allowance 
and consent, grace should be destroyed for that present ? Now the preser- 
vation of this seed is because it remains upon that gospel-account specified 
in such a man, and that is the rh itecriyov, the thing that lets, or hinders, 
that he cannot sin with fulness of consent. And whilst this seed upon this 
account remains, so much of it as remains and hath possession and resi- 
dence in the heart cannot be made use of, or be drawn to a party with its 
contrary, or to act the same thing which its contrary doth act. Nor will 
we grant that the activity of that principle, though preserved in being, may 
be retunded so as to put forth no acting; for the apostle affirms (Gal. v. 17) 
that it is never so but in some degree it makes a resistance, though so weak 
as it is not discernible by his heart in whom it is, as there is some motion 
of the pulse, though not felt, whilst there is life. This that holds invincibly 
true, that whilst this seed of life remains in the will at all (and that it re- 
mains is the apostle's word and assertion), it, to be sure, cannot sin, no 
more than sin, whilst it remains in the heart, can act holily. Sin and cor- 
ruption, so far as it remains, cannot become an actor of true holiness; you 
may much safelier affirm that fire, as fire, may cool and moisten. It is 
true God may, and once we read of did, refund the activity of fire whilst 
it remained fire, so as not to burn, or so much as singe, as was seen in 
Nebuchadnezzar's fiery furnace ; but that fire, remaining fire, should cool 
and moisten, this were utterly contrary to its nature. And the truth of 
this maxim the apostle confirmeth, and applies it to this very case of sin 
and holiness in us, bottoming it upon this very reason ; viz., that a thing 
contrary in its nature, whilst it remains contrary, cannot be brought to 
co-operate in the same act with that which is contrary to itself. Gal. v. 17, 
' For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh : 
and these are contrary the one to the other ; so that ye cannot do the 
things that ye would.' And the same is the bottom ground of that other 
assertion of his in Rom. viii. 7, 8, ' The carnal mind is enmity against 
God ; for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be. So 
then they that are in the flesh cannot please God.' And let no man say 
it is in the power of the will to cause it so to do ; the apostle says the con- 
trary, ' So as ye cannot do what you would,' neither in sinning with your 
whole will, nor in doing good with your whole hearts and whole souls. 
And although corruption that is in us may so far prevail over the will, 
against the active power of grace in the will, as often exert for the outward 
act to commit a sin, yet still, so far as a principle of grace exists, and God 
causeth it to continue and abide, and whilst God upholds it so to do in the 
soul and will, that part of the soul and will cannot be prevailed with by the 
corrupt part to join with it in sinning, for they are contrary. Our apostle 
John, in this his first epistle, expressly says that it cloth remain. And how 
should that be if God did not maintain it by his grace ? For that sin is 
Stronger than created holiness, take it in its own efficacy, and as in itself, 

Chap. V. in our salvation. 215 

we have found by Adam sinning. And it is in effect said, in that verse, 
that it is God that causeth it to remain, even ' because it is born of God ; ' 
and is therefore bo beloved of God, that he says, ' Destroy it not, there is a 
blessing in it.' 

And what is the thing that doth remain, but a seed; and as all must 
grant, distinct from fruit ? Now, every fruit must have a root to grow 
upon. And therefore, gracious actings proceed from a seed let in by a 
birth, and that birth is from our being born of God, whose seed it is called. 
Which fully makes good the assertion, that in regeneration, not merely our 
actions are altered, but there is a change of heart. 

Use 1. We see then, that one fundamental difference between them that 
fall away, and others that persevere in grace, is, that in the first, there is not 
a change of heart nor a new principle, a seed from God that remains. 
Many glorious things are spoken of temporary believers, but it is nowhere 
said in all the Scripture (that I can find), that they are born again. This 
assigned difference is congruous to the works that are wrought on them. 
In the one, there is a stirring, an elevating what is in nature, as of virtuous 
dispositions and self-love, by such motives as suit self, laid down in the 
gospel; which motives, when they cease, those actings in their hearts, which 
men take for grace, do cease also. It was the case of the stony ground, 
who ' received the word with joy, but immediately ' (as the word is, Mark 
iv. 17) they fall off from it, whereas in the other, it becomes new ; new 
acts towards new objects, so new principles: 2 Cor. v. 17, 'Old things pass 
away, and all things become new.' And though operations may cease, or 
be weakened and overborne with the contrary corruption, so far as to pre- 
vail unto the outward acts of sin, yet there is a constant abiding principle 
which lusts unto the contrary. And this difference is found by experience 
in the one sort and the other. And you find also this difference in Scrip- 
ture, in that parable of the sower, of the stony ground; Mat. xiii. 21, Mark 
iv. 17, it is said, ' they have no root in themselves,' which phrase expresseth 
the proper language of inherent grace habitually seated in the heart. There 
might be, and was, a springing up, from an external principle moving them, 
as the Holy Ghost stirred them by the word, but they had no root in them- 
selves. And thus Job expresseth the difference between himself and the 
hypocrites, in the number of which his friends went about to persuade him 
that he was ; Job xix. 28, ' The root of the matter ' (says he) ' is in me ; ' 
that is, truth and sincerity of heart towards God, whence my profession hath 
risen. And the apostle (Gal. v.) alludes to the same comparison, where he 
calls adultery, fornication, and so forth, ' works of the flesh ; ' ' but the 
fruits ' (says he) ' of the Spirit ' (the new creature in us, to which flesh is 
opposed; as also in that text, John iii.) ' are love, joy,' &c. And in this 
sense they are opposed in the 17th verse of that chapter, 'The flesh lusteth 
against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh : and these are contrary 
the one to the other.' By spirit he means not the Holy Ghost in us, for it 
must not be said that the Holy Ghost lusteth against the flesh, but it is 
that spirit which he begets, and then acteth, which is contrary to the cor- 
ruption in us, as two contrary qualities use to be. And that metaphor of 
'fruits of the spirit,' and 'works of the flesh' doth congruously argue this 
spirit to be a root, whence these fruits arise. 

The like difference I observed from the parable, in Mat. xxv., between 
the wise virgins and the foolish. The foolish had oil in their lamps, for a 
profession. They had present assistance for what they did, by motions 
and the like. They had heat, and warmth from rubbing, and stirrage, but 


they had not oil in the vessel, which remained, as principles of grace do 
when men are asleep, as these were. They had not warmth and heat from 
a principle of life. 

Use 2. Let us therefore examine ourselves. Acts and motions will not 
save us, without a spiritual new frame of heart, which is acted and wrought 
upon ; whereas when these other motions are off, men's hearts remain as 
bad as ever, Heb. xii. 28. The apostle useth this argument, that ' seeing,' 
by the state of grace in which we are, ' we have a kingdom that cannot be 
shaken,' perpetual and abiding, 'we should have grace' correspondent and 
answerable ; let us therefore have a fixed and abiding principle thereof 
within us, ' that we may serve God acceptably,' seek unto God to work this 
in you, as well as the act and deed. ' Turn me, Lord' (saith the convert 
Ephraim, Jer. xxxi. 18), ' and I shall be turned.' 

Use 3. When a lust stirs and ariseth in thee, either from Satan's temp- 
tation or from thine own heart, and the mass of corruption that is in thee, 
seek thou unto God to give thee the contrary grace, and to act that grace in 
thee, that it may lust against that corruption and overcome it : James iv. 6, 
' The spirit that is in us lusteth after envy ; but he gives more grace. 
Wherefore he saith, He giveth grace to the humble.' And for this espe- 
cially the apostle frames his prayer for the Thessalonians : 1 Thes. v. 23, 
' And the very God of peace sanctify you throughout ; and I pray God your 
whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of 
our Lord Jesus Christ.' And bless God if thou dost find such an abiding 
principle so wrought in thee, a seed of God, that thou canst not sin or do 
what thou wouldst, in the sense before explained. Bless God for it, for 
this is a great work ; as in Adam at first there was the image of God, as a 
principle concreated with him, which was the foundation of all. 

Use 4. And then again, rest not in having sleeping habits. The wise 
were saved, having oil in their vessel; but being asleep, they were frightened 
out of that sleep, or they had not been saved neither, Matt. xxv. And 
therefore endeavour to exercise every grace upon every occasion it is ordained 
to act in, and that is the end of it. ' Let patience have her perfect work.' 
Patience as the grace given habitually, let it have its perfect work that it 
is ordained for. And so do as to every grace else, that every grace may 
be able to say at your death, ' I have done the work thou gavest me to do.' 

The apostle, 2 Pet. i., having exhorted to add grace to grace, as to faith, 
virtue, &c, both by increasing the principle and acting accordingly, he 
concludes, ver. 8, ' If these be in you, and abound ' (the root of them in 
bringing forth fruit), ' they make you that you shall not be barren nor un- 
fruitful in the knowledge of Jesus Christ.' As thou mayest have every sin 
in thee, though yet thou hast not acted it; so thou hast every grace in thee, 
in the root, which thou hast not yet experience of. And therefore (as Paul 
saith) as in other graces, so ' see you abound in this grace also,' for grace 
is orclained to act. It is the image of God, and as God is pure act, so 
grace, in imitation of him, should be. 

Chap. VI. J in our salvation. 217 


The new creature in us is a conformity to the image of Christ. 

But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are 
changed into the same image, from glory to glory, by the Spirit of the Lord. 
—2 Cor. III. 18. 

That you may know the scope and coherence of these words, our apostle 
in this chapter throughout sets forth the excellency of the gospel of Jesus 
Christ, whereof he was made a minister ; though, as he himself says at the 
beginning, he needed not to have done it unto them, because they had suf- 
ficient experience of the power and glorious efficacy of it, even in their own 
hearts, God having used his ministry as a pen to draw forth even his own 
image, and the image of his Son in their hearts, by the power of the Spirit 
accompanying it. I need (says he, ver. 3) no letters of recommendation, 
' for you are made manifest to be the epistle of Christ, ministered,' or 
written ' by us, not with ink, but the Spirit of the living God; not in tables 
of stone, but in fleshly tables of the heart.' And from thence he falls upon 
a set and large commendation of this ministry, to the end of the chapter, 
and for that purpose makes a comparison between the law and the gospel, 
the ministry of Moses and of Jesus Christ. The sum of which is this : 
The law indeed (says he) had glory in it, for it revealed the glorious will ot 
God, setting before men's eyes that image wherein they were created ; for 
the law was the copy of it. Which glory was shadowed out by the shin- 
ing of Moses's face when he came off the mount. But yet, alas! it was but 
the ministry of death (as it is called at that 7th verse), to the hearers and be- 
holders of it ; for though they beheld it, yet it changed not their hearts 
into the image of it ; nay, it dazzled their eyes so that Moses was fain to 
put a veil over his face, in token that his ministry did not change men's 
hearts or open their eyes, but a veil lay over all men's hearts in the rend- 
ing* of it ; but now the ministry of the gospel doth exceed every way in 
glory, ver. 9. 

1. It is as the glass or mirror, which represents unto us a far more 
excellent glory, even the glory of the Lord Jesus Christ, he being (Gal. iii. 1) 
pictured, described, and set forth therein to men's eyes in all his glorious 
properties of life and death, being crucified before men's eyes. So that the 
gospel sets forth the image of Christ, who is the image of his Father, and 
the brightness of his glory, Heb. i. 3. So that in the face of Jesus Christ, 
revealed in the glass, doth shine the glorious image of God the Father, 
and that more clearly than it did in the law, or in man at his first creation, 
2 Cor. iv. 6. 

2. Th^re is not only a brighter discovery of the glory of Christ in the 
gospel, but believers have a clearer view of it in the dispensation of the 
gospel than they had who lived under that of the law ; ' We behold with 
open face ' (says the apostle) ' the glory of the Lord,' not veiled and 
obscured, but in the clearest light. 

3. We do not barely behold it and view it, but it changeth us into the 
same image. The law was a dead letter, and though it shewed us the will 
of God, yet it changed us not into the image of it ; but the gospel reveals 
the glorious image of Jesus Christ to true believers, and changeth thera 

* Qu. ' reading ' ? — Ed. 


into the same image, yet so as by degrees, from one degree of glory to another, 
this glorious image being perfected by little and little, till we come to the 
full stature of Christ. 

4. Then lastly is shewn the ground and true reason why the gospel thus 
changeth those that look into it by faith, because (ver. 6, 7, 8) the gospel 
is the ministration of the Spirit ; but the law is a dead letter. The Spirit 
accompanieth the ministration of the gospel, and we are changed into Christ's 
image, by the Spirit of the Lord. 

Obs. In all true believers, that have their eyes opened to see Jesus Christ 
in the gospel by true faith, there is a most blessed change wrought in them 
into the same image of Jesus Christ, as he is revealed in that gospel. 

1. I say all believers, for 'we all' (says the apostle) that do 'behold 
Christ ' by faith are thus changed. He doth not speak only of ministers 
and apostles, but all true Christians ; for the comparison stands between 
true believers and the people or children of Israel, who could not behold 
the glory of Moses's ministry. But they are believers that in that gospel 
with open face behold the glory of the Lord. Compare the 13th, 14th, and 
15th verses with the 18th verse.. 

2. They are changed thus in this life, for it is by beholding Christ in the 
mirror ; but after this life is ended, the glass shall be taken away, and we 
shall see him as he is. 

3. They are changed into that image of Christ which is revealed in the 
gospel ; for being changed by beholding him therein, therefore so far as they 
behold of Christ in the gospel, so far are they changed. The doctrine 
having so good ground in the text, so as you cannot look on the text but it 
presents itself to your consideration, I will omit other Scriptures that be 
alleged for it, and give you some reasons of it, and so. come to the uses. I 
shall give only one place. In this chapter, 2 Cor. iii. 3, the apostle affirms 
of the Corinthians, to whom he wrote, that they were made manifest to be 
the epistle of Christ, which was written in their hearts. What doth he 
mean there by the ' epistle of Christ,' but copies written out by the Spirit, 
even word for word, line for line, so that in their hearts and lives might be 
read the grace of Jesus Christ in some measure, and the likeness of his 
death and resurrection ? They were his epistle, but Christ's image was the 
matter of it. 

The first reason of the doctrine is drawn from that special and ultimate 
end that God hath predestinated us to. I do not say the end he chose us 
for, but that which he did predestinate us to. For that is the difference 
between election and predestination ; the one is for an end, his own glory ; 
the other is to an end, that is, what he means to do with his children and 
chosen ones. Now if you look into Rom. viii. 29, 30, you shall find the 
apostle says there, that ' those whom he foreknew, he also, or withal, did 
predestinate ' ; that is, appoint to this especial end ! What ? ' To be con- 
formed to the image of his Son.' The apostle adds withal the reason, ' that 
he might be the first-born among many brethren.' The scope of the apostle, 
why he brings the general proposition there, is to arm believers against 
afflictions, for it was Christ's portion before us, and God hath predestinated 
us to the same image, and yet not only to afflictions, for an image implies 
a conformity in every part ; it is not otherwise an image or likeness. And 
so he brings in this general proposition for their comfort, that as they are 
like to Christ in suffering, so shall they be in all things else. He brings it 
in for their comfort, that God had ordained them in all things to be like unto 
his Son, and to be conformed to the same image, both of grace, sufferings, 


and at last of glory, thereby to arm them against these afflictions, that so 
they might be content to be like nnto Christ in this as well as in the rest, 
as knowing assuredly they should be like him in glory, as well as in Buffer- 
ing conformed to the same image. It is a general proposition, brought to 
this particular purpose ; and as an imago is not an image of another, unless 
it be conformable in every part, so we are not conformed to Christ's image 
unless wo be made like him in all things. 

1. It is the end to which we are predestinated, containing the full pur- 
pose and intention of God in his decree, that we should in all things be 
made like to Christ, in this life, like to him in grace and afflictions, in our 
measure, and after in glory. 

2. There is the reason and measure of this conformity, « That he might 
be the firstborn among many brethren.' 

(1.) Forasmuch as all are said to be his brethren, it implies it. God 
had many children to bring to glory, and he would have them all alike as 
brethren, all to resemble him and one another ; and therefore conformed 
them all to the image of his eldest son. God set up Christ as the master- 
piece, first pattern, and draught of his decree, predestinating all his to be 
like unto him ; that what graces and glory he had, they in their measure 
should have also. And as, Heb. ii. 11, the reason why he took our nature 
on him (being made like unto us by taking the similitude of sinful flesh) is 
given, that he might call us brethren, so also that we might be able to call 
him brother. He conforms us in all things like unto himself, that he might 
be the first-born of many brethren. And this too in respect of the sancti- 
fication of our nature, that ' he who sanctifieth and they who are sanctified 
might be all of one ;' yet still so as he might be the first-born among all 
those brethren, were they never so many. In the old law, the elder bro- 
ther had the pre-eminency ; and therefore, though we should be made like 
to him in grace and glory, yet he would have the dignity, the priority, and 
the pre-eminence in all those things wherein we were made like him, both 
in grace, and glory, and also in sufferings. There are none equal to him ; 
they are but like him. So that out of this place you see, that howsoever 
God created us in his own image at the first immediately, yet his intent 
was to restore it by another way. He, having a Son that was the image 
of himself, resolved that he should take our nature upon him, that he might 
be therein made like to us, that so, filling his nature with all grace and 
with all glory, he might conform us again unto the image of that his Son, 
that we might all be brethren, all alike conformed unto him. The same 
apostle tells us, Col. i. 19, that ' it pleased the Father that in him should 
all fulness dwell ;' and God ordained him as the store-house and treasury 
of all that grace and glory which he means to bestow on his children. 
Adam lost all, and all is now in Christ, the second Adam, that ever the 
elect sons of men shall have ; and this fulness dwells in him, Col. ii. 9, that 
we might be made complete in him. It is principally there meant in 
regard of sanctification, as appears by what follows there. Now, how are 
we therein said to be complete in him, but when we do partake of that his 
fulness in a completeness suiting with our measure, and conformity unto 
him, so as no part of likeness to him is wanting, as the word complete im- 
plies? And therefore the apostle, in the 11th, 12th, 13th, and 14th verses, 
shews wherein it consists, viz., in being circumcised as he was, and in being 
buried as he was, and in being raised up as he was. Therefore all fulness 
is in him, and therefore also he is called the Sun of righteousness, because 
as all light is gathered up into the body of the sun, and dwells there in the 


fulness of it. and of it the moon and other stars do partake ; and the sun, 
shining on them, makes them in their measure light as the sun itself is, so 
is it here. God hath appointed Jesus Christ as the person in whom should 
remain, in the fulness of it, the glorious image of God, and all believers 
upon whom he shines are transformed into the same image ; and the nearer 
they come to him, the more they are transformed. This you see is the 
decree of God concerning all his : to be conformed to the image of Christ ; 
and it contains fully all that can be said of what we were ordained to. 

2. A second reason of the doctrine is this : when God doth call any man, 
then he begins to execute that his decree, a,nd so to renew the image of 
Christ in him. For 'whom he hath predestinated, them also he hath 
called ;' and calling is nothing but the conforming us to his image in this life, 
in regard of grace; and therefore, says Paul, Gal. i. 15,16, 'When it pleased 
God to call me, and to reveal his Son in me ;' that is, when he began to 
manifest this image of Christ in my poor souk What then is the new birth, 
but the forming and fashioning the image of Christ in us ? 'I travail in 
birth again,' says Paul, Gal. iv. 19, ' until Christ be formed in you.' "What 
is the meaning that Christ should be formed in them, but that the lively 
and real image of Christ should be imprinted on their hearts ? And in the 
word formed there is. a metaphor taken from the shaping of a child in the 
womb ; that look, as the natural parents communicating matter of their 
own bodies, it is framed and shaped by the spirits into the lively likeness 
of themselves, limb for limb, answerable to themselves, so likewise is Christ 
appointed by God as a ' second Adam,' as it is in 1 Cor. xv. 45-48, and 
an ' everlasting Father,' Isa. ix. 6, who communicates to us the seed of his 
word, 1 Pet. i. 23, to be shed into our hearts, and the Spirit of Christ en- 
livening it, frames it and fashions it in every limb like unto himself ; and 
as the first Adam begat a child in his likeness, Gen. v., so doth this second 
Adam in his likeness. And though indeed the full conformity to him shall 
be in heaven, yet so far as Christ is revealed, so far are we made like him ; 
we see him but as he was upon earth, revealed in the gospel, and unto that 
image are we conformed here in the new birth. As we see him in the 
mirror, we are made like to that image in it ; but when we see him as he 
is, we shall also be like him in glory, 1 John iii. 1, 2. And therefore, Isa. 
liii. 10, we are called his seed, which do prolong his days upon the earth ; 
for though he be ascended up to heaven, yet he begets daily those that are 
like to him as he was on the earth ; so Like him, as they are said to prolong 
his days on earth ; as you use to say of a child, like his parent, that so 
long as he lives, his father will never die, he is so like unto him. So the 
resemblance of Christ in us doth prolong his. days on earth ; and therefore 
Christ is said to prolong his days on earth. Christ is said to be ' in us,' 
2 Cor. xiii. 5, to ' live in us,' Gal. ii. 20. And we are said to put on 
Christ, even in regard of sanctification, Rom. xiii. 14 ; that is, we clothe 
our hearts and lives with his image, fashioning ourselves to him. Will you 
have all in a word ? The church, the body, the members of Christ are 
called, 1 Cor. xii. 12, Christ: ii you read the whole verse, and consider it 
well, you will find it so ; and that both in regard of union to him, and 
communion with him in his image and likeness, and therefore also have 
the same common name with him, as brethren and members use to have. 
For the name Christ signifies Anointed ; and he is indeed anointed first, as 
our head, with the Spirit and the grace of it above measure, even above 
his fellows ; but yet so that as from Aaron's head that oil ran down and 
anointed his clothing and all his body, so do the grace and virtue of all that 

Chap. VI. j in our salvation. 221 

Christ did or suffered descend to them that ' receive the anointing ' of him 
1 John ii. 27. 

Use 1. The first use may bo a use of trial or examination, whether we 
yet belong to Christ or no. Let us examine whether we have his image 
renewed in us. We are predestinated (as you have heard) to bo conformed 
thereunto. And in our calling also, God begins to renew this his decree on 
us. If that therefore we would make our calling and election sure (as the 
apostle speaks, 2 Peter i. 10), we should labour to try and examine whether 
Christ his image be in us or no. Let me therefore exhort you in the words 
of the apostle, 2 Cor. xiii. 5, to try and examine yourselves, whether Christ's 
image be in you. ' Know ye not your own selves, how that Christ is in you, 
unless you be reprobates ?' that is, in the same state with them ; for those 
that are predestinate are predestinate to be conformed to the image of his 
Son, which if it be not in you, ye are as reprobates. My brethren, we profess 
ourselves Christians ; whence is it that we have our name, but from our 
conformity unto Christ, as you heard out of 1 Cor. xii. 12 ? And there- 
fore, those that have not the image of Christ in them begun in some mea- 
sure, are but bastard Christians. We plead we are baptized, and by it 
made members of Christ ; and did not we read that those that are baptized 
truly into Christ have put on Christ, his graces, his image, in sanctification 
as well as justification, as you heard out of the 12th of the Romans, and 
the last verse ? We profess ourselves also such as Christ hath died for, 
and in the persuasion of this we labour to soothe up ourselves daily. Well ; 
if he hath died for us, he hath died m us ; if he hath lived for us, he also 
lives in us, by his grace and by his Spirit. Thus Paul, when (Gal. ii. 20) 
he says, ' Jesus Christ gave himself for him,' put this before it, ' I am 
crucified with Christ, and Christ lives in me.' We all also profess ourselves 
to be the children of God, and call God Father, and Christ brother ; and 
have you not heard out of the 8th of the Piomans, that God predestinates 
his to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he may call them brethren ? 
And if you do not in some measure resemble your elder brother Christ, you 
are none of the children of his Father. Have you not also heard that 
Christ begets them in his image ? How will you be able to ask your in- 
heritance at his hands, unless you be his son ? And, my brethren, howso- 
ever we may pass current here for good Christians, and think ourselves so, 
yet God at the latter day, and day of death, when your souls are brought 
to him, either to own, or to refuse, the very first things that he will inquire 
into will be, as Christ did when he saw the penny, whose image is it ? 
And as he said, ' What is Caesar's to Caesar, and what is God's to God,' so 
will God say ; if it hath the image of Christ on it, give it to Christ, for it 
belongs to him ; if of the devil (for one of these you must have), then give 
it to him, for it belongs to him. Nothing will pass current coin with God, 
but what hath the image of Christ on it ; none will be taken for his sheep, 
but those that have his mark ; and then he will raise it up at the last day, 
as he himself speaketh. All this, my brethren, I press upon you to stir 
you up seriously to lay your hearts to what shall be spoken, by way of 
trial : for to help you therein, my intent is to shew you the particulars 
wherein the image of Christ doth consist, to which we are conformed in 
this life. And these take along with you. First, that it is not perfection, 
but truth therein, that God accepts. For the best are but imperfectly 
changed into this image, for it is from glory to glory, that is, from one 
degree to another ; if therefore you canst discern the prints of his image, 
and superscription on thy heart, though they be but as rude and imperfect 


stamps, and thy evidence be but as the prints in a blurred sixpence, yet if 
thou beest sure thou findest them there, thou mayest have comfort ; God 
will not deny any such imperfect coins. 

Now this image consisteth especially of two parts : first, in a conformity 
to his graces ; secondly, to his example. I speak of that image which in 
this life we are changed to ; there is also the image of glory, which in the 
life to come we shall be conformed to, and that of suffering, which is 
here in this life, neither of which are pertinent to this text. For only that 
image of him as here on earth is revealed to us in the gospel ; we see him 
not as glorious in the heavens ; but his grace, his work, his death, his 
restoration, and other parts of his mediation, which are the objects of faith, 
unto these here must we be conformed ; for as the apostle says, 1 John iv. 
17, ' Even as he is, so are we in this world.' 

1. The image of Christ in us is a conformity to all his graces. The like 
graces in us must be renewed that were in him : John i. 16, ' Of his fulness 
we have all received, grace for grace.' Christ was said to be full of grace 
in the former verses, and of his fulness do all we (says the apostle), that 
believe in him, receive grace ; and that grace for grace ; as you ought to 
say when you copy out one thing out of another, that it is done word for 
word, so do we of Christ (says John) receive grace for grace, that is, 
look, what graces are in Christ are derived to us, grace for grace, and there- 
fore, John xv. 5, he is compared to the vine, and we to the branches, be- 
cause he conveys the same kind of sap of grace to us, that is in himself, 
so as we bear the like fruit unto that he did, pleasing through him unto the 
Father. John xvii. 19, ' For their sakes sanctify I myself, that they' (even 
all that thou hast given me) ' may be sanctified through the truth.' Christ 
sanctified our nature, that by it he might be made sanctification to us ; and 
the place here implies, that to that end he received the graces of sanctifica- 
tion, that he might sanctify us with the same kind, receiving it to that end, 
and therefore there is Ho grace in Christ but is renewed in his children ; 
otherwise that grace in Christ were in vain, for he received all as a fountain 
to convey his store to us. And why else is it that believers are exhorted 
to be holy for he is holy, 1 Peter i. 16, who are said to be righteous as he 
is righteous, that is in the same kind? not measure, 1 John iii. 7. Why are 
we called to shew forth the virtues of Christ, 1 Peter ii. 9, if we had not 
received them ? My brethren, let us be exhorted to examine ourselves by 
this. It is not enough to have gifts from Christ (as reprobates had, Judas 
and others), an abundance of swimming knowledge, common enlightening, 
natural wisdom, learning, abilities to express a man's self; all which I con- 
fess came from Christ ; but yet are not part of that his image, but are 
endowments which flow from him to the sons of men. For he is thus the b>ht 
that enlightencth every man that comes into the world, John i. 8. And as 
the sun in the heavens, so the Sun of righteousness, with his common gifts, 
shines both on good and bad. But his image is his graces, and those not 
civil virtues only ; for they are but common gifts ; but Christ was not only 
a civil man ; no, he called for more righteousness than the Pharisee had. 
' Except your righteousness,' says he, to his disciples, ' exceeds that of the 
Scribes and Pharisees, you cannot enter into the kingdom of God ;' and yet 
they were civil men, and lived soberly and justly, were no adulterers. And 
yet who greater opposites to Christ than these were ? 

Truly methinks the consideration of this truth should amaze all civil 
justiciaries in the world, and deliver them from resting in their glittering 
sins. Mark but of what strain Christ was, look into the state, mark and 

Chap. VI. 1 in our salvation. 223 

observe his stops in the story of him. He made the duties of holiness hig 
chief trade, he lived not only civilly but holily ; it wore blasphemy to say 
the contrary. And if that men wore begotten of him, in his image, those 
virtues they would shew forth most. Christ, you hoard, is our father, we 
his seed, begotten by him, and he formed in us. Now as in a father those 
limbs that are greater, are proportionally so in the child, or else it were a 
monster, so all these graces which were most in Christ, would be most in 
us if we were his children. Whenas a man makes a great show of all kind 
of civil virtues, of sobriety, chastity, and the like, but none of holiness, it 
is a sign he is a monster, and Christ begets no such. Let men but consider 
that these virtues are found in those that never heard of the name of Christ, 
as the ancient heathen and the Turks at this day, who are not Christians, 
not so much as in name ; and therefore those that go no further deserve 
the name less than they. Wild trees do bring forth blossoms, that grow 
in wildernesses, as well as those in gardens. But those that are ingrafted 
with Christ do bring forth fruit also according unto its kind, and the root 
they are ingrafted on. But what are moral virtues only but blossoms ? 
And though indeed it is true, that even those were in Christ, and ought to 
be in Christians, yea, and are ; yet, if you would make them signs of a 
good estate, you must discern them as growing from union with Christ, 
and then they will be of another kind than mere moral virtues are ; differ- 
ing as much as sweet maijorum from wild, the one a weed, the other an 
herb. Your meekness will proceed, not from softness of nature, but from 
a heart humbled, tamed, sweetened with the apprehension of thy injuries 
done to Christ, which now thou fmdest forgiven, and from this ground thy 
spirit is calmed and subdued. In the 11th of Matthew, 'Learn of me' 
(says Christ), ' for I am lowly and meek ;' the civilest, the meekest men by 
nature must learn of Christ to be meek and humble. And so also that love, 
sweetness, and ingenuousness of nature, would reach higher than it doth 
or can do in civil men, it would extend itself to thy enemies ; for so Christ 
loved thee when thou wert an enemy : ' If you love them that love you, 
the Gentiles do so,' says Christ; there is but one good turn for another. 
Good nature and love in a gracious heart will also burst out and be seen, 
especially to the saints and those that excel in virtue. Indeed when Christ 
met with that young man, that was but a civil man, it is said he looked on 
him and loved him ; but when he spoke to his sheep, to his poor disciples, 
to Mary Magdalene and others, he opened himself to them, expressed 
bowels of his love unto them, countenanced them, cherished them, com- 
forted them ! And when they told him of his brother, and sister, and 
mother, he shewed that they that were spiritually akin to him were dearer 
to him. 

Also our mercy and pity would shew itself to the souls of men especially ; 
he was good to their bodies, for he healed many, fed five thousand out of 
his compassion ; but it was to pluck their souls out of the jaws of death, 
that was his chiefest aim ; stronger it was in him than hunger to convert a 
soul ; for whenas he came an hungry to Samaria, and they went to buy 
victuals, he met with the woman of Samaria and forgot his dinner ; it was 
meat to him to convert herself; and therefore, wheresoever he came, he 
went up and down instructing of men ; prayed for his enemies' salvation, 
even at the last gasp ; wept over Jerusalem when he went to be crucified 
in it ; and if we had any of his compassion, our bowels would yearn within 
us to see men lie in the fire, and would move us to labour to pluck them 
out ; for, alas ! that is men's greatest misery. 


And so our humility would not be that proud humility the world is so 
full of. When his kinsfolk came to him (in John vii. 3-5) and spurred 
him on to go shew himself — ' If thou dost these things, go shew thyself to 
the world ' — alas, he suppressed it, shewed it no further than it might be 
for the salvation of his chosen, and that they might believe in him, John 
v. 34, 44, denied himself, emptied himself of the glory that was due to him 
(as from the beginning of the world), regarding it not if his Father might 
be glorified. And when it came to that dismal hour of crucifying, and 
encountering with his wrath, 'Not my will' (says he), 'but thy will be 
done.' How content was he to bear any condition of hunger, nakedness, 
the taunts, reproaches of his most base enemies ; ' and when he was reviled, 
reviled not again.' How did he express his contempt of the world, in hav- 
ing an eye to that glory which was set before him, that though he had all 
the world offered him at once, yet he refused it all ? What zeal and 
courage did he express in his Father's cause, whipping the profane out of 
the temple, withstanding the corruptions of those times ; opposing the 
Pharisees, calling them hypocrites to their very faces ; what hatred and 
detestation did he express against their sins ! 

Use 2. By this we may learn how much the image of God in us is 
advanced and improved above what was in the heart of Adam in innocency, 
as also above that which the image of God is, in respect of conformity to 
the law and will of God. For though holiness in all states is one and the 
same, the same for substance ; for holiness is to aim at God's glory, and 
that runs through all states, both in innocency, and in the state of grace, 
and in heaven ; yet that holiness which Christ works in us under the gospel, 
and by which we know God and Jesus Christ, and God in him, hath far 
more elevated strains, of a more excellent genius, and far higher, nobler, 
and heavenlier, than what was in Adam's heart, or his heart ever knew. 
For instance, I will go over but some graces which are all but Christ in us. 

First, Adam had humility ; he must needs have it, as he was a creature. 
The angels they have humility in them, for they cover their faces when they 
behold the glory of God ; they have wings on purpose to do it. But the 
humility that Adam had, whence did it spring ? Why, by seeing himself 
to be a creature, made out of nothing, and that there was an infinite dis- 
tance between God, that was the Creator, and himself. But now take that 
grace of humility that is in the heart of a believer, and it is of another 
make, and springs from another and more noble rise ; for was Adam so 
humble as to be laid so low as to see himself a creature and God the 
Creator ? Why, sin lays a believer lower, far lower ; and humility in a 
believer riseth thence. It riseth likewise from this, that he that was God 
himself was humbled, and therefore shall man be proud ? Had Adam 
such motives to humility ? That humility and self-emptiness that is in a 
believer makes him not value his own graces ; they are all as nothing to 
him, and Jesus Christ is all in all to him. It lays him not only low, see- 
ing himself nothing as a creature, but it makes him account himself worse 
than nothing, a creature deserving hell itself. Adam, though he was 
humbled as a creature, and knew his distance, yet he could stand upon 
terms, terms of creation, with God ; he might challenge a justification that 
was due to him, for so the covenant of works doth, which he was created 
under. 'Look into Rom. iv. 4, and see what the apostle saith there: ' Now 
to him that worketh is the reward -not reckoned of grace, but of debt ; ' 
and verse 2, ' If Abraham were justified by works, he hath whereof to 
glory ; ' but Abraham had not whereof to glory before God, therefore he 


was not justified by works ; that is the apostle's argument. He clearly in 
that place holds forth the difference between the covenant of works and tho 
covenant of grace : tho one, ho saith, is xara rb bpsiXri/jLa., it is according 
to debt or due ; but the other is xara yaPiv, accoixling to grace. Now, is 
it not a strange speech, that he that should have been justified by works 
(as Adam should have been) had whereof to glory, had something that was 
a debt, which in some respect he might have challenged, and have stodfl 
upon terms with God about it ? Here now is the humility of this Adam, 
that he knew himself to be a creature, made out of nothing, and that God 
might annihilate him when he would, though being under the covenant of 
works, while ho did continue so there was a justification that was his due, 
that was his natural due, that God should account him and pronounce him 
righteous. I confess I have often wondered at the expression of the apostle 
in that Rom. iv ; for we read in Rom. xi. 35, ' Who hath first given to the 
Lord, and it shall be recompensed unto him again ? ' Therefore that is 
not the apostle's meaning, as if Adam could have given anything to God, 
and therefore he might challenge a recompence from God ; but the mean- 
ing is only this, that in the way of a dueness and of a natural justness, 
such as is between the Creator and the creature, whilst the creature re- 
maineth holy, God should according to that law justify him according to 
his works, and so he had whereof to glory. It is not a debt of retribution 
(that is the distinction), it is not debitum restitutionis, as if he could in a 
mercenary way procure anything of God, yet it was debitum convenience* 
it was meet that if he wrought, and remained holy, God should justify him. 
So that Adam's humility was joined with what was a natural due, which 
he might have challenged if he had continued holy. But what is our 
humility we have from Christ? Why, instead of standing upon terms, 
'the wages of sin is death.' The reward, saith he, is reckoned of debt, 
and he receives it as wages ; but all the wages we have now, it is but the 
wages of sin, and that is death. And the heart of a believer acknowledgeth 
it, and doth not only submit himself to the sovereignty of God, as he is a 
creature, — so Adam must do, — but he lays his neck upon the block, tells God 
that hell and destruction are his due, puts his mouth in the dust, and walketh 
humbly with God ; and if God gives him life, Oh ! it is the free gift of God ! 
1 The wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life.' 

Secondly, Consider the justification that Adam had, and that which we 
have by Christ. The justification of Adam was natural. It was plainly 
this : if he did continue righteous, which righteousness was preserved and 
conserved by working according to the rule and the principles in his own 
heart, he thus obeying God, and remaining righteous, it was a natural due 
to him, a meet thing for God upon this to approve him and pronounce him 
righteous, because he did act and continue as God had made him, and he 
walked according to the law of a creature toward his Creator. Now, what 
was it for God to give him this approbation, and so to justify him ? It 
was only this, that he pronounced him to be good in his kind, even as he 
pronounced all the other creatures to be so in their kind, Gen. i. 31. 
God viewed all in the creatures that he had made, and said they were very 
good ; he viewed Adam so too, for this was before Adam fell, and he pro- 
nounced him good, as he did the rest ; only good in his kind, which was 
the goodness of righteousness, holiness, and integrity which he yet stood 
in. So that indeed the justification of Adam, according to the covenant of 
works, it was but an approbation of him, that he continued good, that he 
* Qu. l e conveniente'' ? — Ed. 



walked uprightly, &c, as he pronounceth of the heavens that keep their 
ordinances to this day, that they are good ; so he would have done of man, 
if he had kept his ordinances according to the law of creation. But, alas ! 
all this goodness and righteousness he had would not have stood out 
against the least sin ; if he had but sinned, all this had been forfeited, all 
gone, utterly lost. But now what manner of righteousness is it that we 
have by Christ revealed in the gospel ? Why, we are justified freely by 
grace, we are justified by a righteousness which is sin-proof, by a right- 
eousness which, when it hath made a purchase of the forgiveness of all 
our sins, gives us in heaven too, by a righteousness which believers never 
can, never shall, out-spend, by a righteousness that pardons all a man's sins, 
pays all his debts, the very first hour that he believes and lays hold upon 
it, and which continues to everlasting, and would continue to everlasting, 
to justify him, though he should remain in a mixed condition of sinning 
against God, as we are in this life, by a righteousness which breaks through 
God's justice to God's throne of grace, and makes the soul do so with a 
world of confidence. 

Thirdly, Let us compare the love that was in Adam's heart to God, and 
the love which Christ works in us. Adam loved God, it is true, because he 
was a good God to him, and his creator ; but he so loved him as that Adam 
withal knew that if he did but trip, did but sin, God would instantly hate 
him more than ever he loved him, and his wrath would fall upon him, and 
he must die the death ; so that, indeed, the term of love between God and 
man, then, what was it? I love you, while you love me. God had, out 
of love, made Adam holy, and given him power to love ; but then so long 
as he continued to love God thus, and to love God at such a height, so long 
God continued to love him ; so that indeed it was but a temporary love, as 
I may express it, that is, a love which might fail, and did fail as such. It 
is a saying that Seneca hath, and it is a true one, ' To love one so as a man 
thinks with himself it may fall out so one day that this man may hate me ; 
this is the bane of friendship.' There cannot be a perfect love where this 
is. ' Perfect love doth cast out' all such ' fear.' But yet this was the state 
and condition of Adam. It is true, he knew that so long as he loved God 
and obeyed him, God would love him ; but yet so as he knew withal, that 
if he sinned (and he knew not how soon he might sin, for he was but a 
creature), God would then presently hate him. This was clearly and truly 
the friendship and love that was between God and Adam. But now what 
is the love, what kindleth the love now that is in the heart of a believer of 
a more noble flame ? It is a love that is free, a love that is not fixed upon 
us while we love God, or because we love him, but was eternally, before we 
had done either good or evil, as the phrase is, Rom. ix. 11. ' Not for your 
sakes, but for my own name's sake, do I this,' saith God, Ezek. xxxvi. 32. 
Indeed he hath chosen us in Christ, that we should be holy in love ; but he 
hath not chosen us because we loved him, nor doth he continue his choice 
therefore. Is it a love which may prove but temporary ? No ; it is a love 
from everlasting to everlasting ; it is a love that is pitched upon our per- 
sons ; I love such a person, saith God, be he sinful or holy ; and if sinful, 
I will make him holy. The love pitched upon Adam was in relation to his 
graces, and the love that God bare to Adam was but single to him, as to 
his creature ; but the love that is in God's heart now is through Christ his 
Son, professing to love us with the same love he loveth him. That love he 
bare Adam was such as he bare to any creature, be they what they be, so 
long as they remained holy and kept in their first state ; but the love that 

Chap. VI.] in our salvation. 227 

a believer takes in, it is a peculiar love, it is a love with difference : ' I will 
shew mercy to whom I will shew menry,' that is all the roason of it : ' Jacob 
have I loved, and Esau have I hated ;' and he gives no reason of it. The 
love that Adam had in his condition was such, that sin took away all God's 
love, and turned it into hatred ; but hero is a love now that, though wo bo 
sinful, we are not children of wrath when we are believers ; a love which 
much water cannot quench ; a lovo which, when we were sinners and ene- 
mies, it was the more desirous to manifest itself, because it should have 
more opportunity by giving Christ to shew the more love, by how much the 
more we were sinners. Now all this love doth the heart of a believer take 
in under the gospel, and doth Christ work in us, therefore raiseth up this 
love to a height, to a nobleness, to a generosity, to a heavenliness, such as 
never Adam's heart was capable of. 'Perfect love casteth out fear;' he 
knows God so loves him as he will never hate him, nor never can do it ; 
a love which is not mercenary, doth not serve for reward ; a love which 
(when the gospel once hath kindled it) will cleave to God though a man's 
heart knows not whether God love him or no ; a love which will not only 
make a man submit to the will of God, but makes a man's soul willing, if 
it were the will of God, to be lost for him. So it was with Paul. 

Fourthly, Take self-denial in a Christian, which is a new grace. ' Not 
my will, but thy will,' was Christ's motto. Alas ! Adam was put to live, 
he was to keep within his bounds which God created him in, and it was fit 
he should be kept in them. But we are put to deny ourselves, yea, some- 
times when it comes in opposition to God, to deny friends, father, mother, 
life, yea, a man's own graces. No such self-denial was Adam put to, which 
is the most great and glorious grace of all the rest. 

Fifthly, Go take all motives to obedience, and they are far more noble in 
a Christian than ever was in Adam ; as in 1 John ii. 7, love is called not 
only an old commandment, but a new. And why a new one ? Because 
when the gospel cometh, it brings new motives, and urgeth the command- 
ment of love to our brethren and fellow-creatures upon such grounds as the 
law and the covenant of works never did. We have higher motives to the 
smallest duty than ever Adam could have or his heart was capable of. Are 
we to be kind to our fellow-creatures ? Saith the apostle, ' Put on kind- 
ness.' But how ? How doth he move it ? 'As the elect of God, holy and 
beloved,' Col. iii. 12, as those whom God hath chosen with an everlasting 
love in Jesus Christ, ' forbearing one another and forgiving one another.' 
And so you have the like in Eph. iv. 32, ' Be ye kind one to another, 
tender hearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ's sake hath 
forgiven you.' And so in Eph. v. 24, the obedience of wives to their hus- 
bands, and the love of husbands to their wives, is urged upon such a ground 
as Adam should never have had such a motive run through his heart : ' Let 
wives' (saith he) ' be subject to their husbands in everything, as the church 
is subject unto Christ. And let husbands love their wives, even as Christ 
also loved the church.' Such motives as these, in these common relations, 
doth the gospel give us. These old commandments Adam had, of duties 
to his fellow-creatures, and of love to his wife, and the like ; but they were 
upon lower motives, infinitely lower than what the gospel holds forth. He 
had no such example as we have in Christ for every duty, no such motives 
as we have from him. 

Lastly, The assistance which we have from Christ is of a higher kind 
than that which Adam had. How did God assist Adam in all the works of 
the law that he was to perform ? What was the promise of assistance ] 


No other than to assist him in his kind (God having created him holy) as 
he doth assist other creatures in their kind. I say his assistance was but 
the concurrence of a common providence, so as to other creatures ; only it 
was applied to Adam in his kind, as a creature that was holy. But now 
the assistance that we have under the gospel, for every work we do, is of 
a higher nature, for Jesus Christ is our covenant, he hath undertaken to 
fulfil all in us and for us ; all that God would have us to do, he hath under- 
taken to work it in us, so far forth as to save us, or to bring us to that 
degree of glory he hath appointed us unto. He works in us both to will 
and to do according to his good pleasure : ' I am able to do all things' 
(saith Paul) ' through Christ that strengthened me ;' so that ' it is not I' 
(saith he), ' but the grace of" God that is in me,' the grace of God acting 
me, falling upon me, and overpowering my spirit. A believer he is in the 
Spirit, and so he walketh in the Spirit. But this was not the law of assist- 
ing Adam, which was only the law of common providence. 

2. The second thing which we are conformed to is Christ's example ; and 
so the author to the Hebrews calls him ' the Captain of our salvation,' Heb. 
ii. 10, because like a valiant general he hath set us a pattern, and ' left us 
an example to follow his steps,' 1 Pet. ii. 21 ; and therefore the same apostle 
Peter, following the same metaphor, 1 Pet. iv. 1, says, 'Arm yourselves 
with the same mind.' Nay, lay but aside the works of his divinity, as heal- 
ing, fasting, &c, and of his mediation, and the like ; and it is a sure rule, 
that whatsoever Christ did for a Christian he doth in him also, there being 
a likeness and proportion, and an assimilation in his works of grace in us 
and for us. He is conceived, formed, born again in us, as you heard out 
of the Galatians :* ' We circumcised with him, with the circumcision made 
without hands, are dead, buried, raised up again with him,' as it is Col. 
ii. 11-13. So that the conversion of a sinner is but the acting over again 
of Christ's part. Now though I might go over many, yet I will insist, this 
time, only in these which are mentioned, Rom. vi. 5-9 ; the sum of which 
is in the 5th verse, that ' we are planted with him into the likeness of his 
death and resurrection.' For those two being the chiefest parts of his 
mediation, the work of sanctification in us is assimilated and likened unto 
them. Mortification, or the killing of sin, and vivification, or quickening us 
unto newness of life, are assimilated to his death and resurrection ; and that 
not only because they are wrought by the power of them (though that be 
true, as appears by Phil. iii. 10), but also in regard of a likeness that there 
is between the one and the other, and so we are said to be planted with him 
into the similitude of his resurrection. I desire you to consider Rom. vi. 
3—7, &c, because I will ground the rest on what is there. In the 6th verse, 
you may observe how the apostle puts upon the mass of corruption and sin 
that is in us, the name of a body, calling it ' the body of sin,' not only 
because that it is compact and made up of innumerable lusts in us as mem- 
bers of it (as it is Col. iii. 3-5), which, like members, are knit together ; but 
chiefly in respect of this, that he might shew us the likeness between Christ's 
dying, and our dying to sin, that as he had a body was crucified, so we have 
a body of sin to be destroyed ; yea, and in the same manner crucified as 
his was. Such is his phrase in the 6th verse, ' that our old man,' or body 
of sin, ' might be crucified with him' and destroyed. Yea, and the apostle 
Peter, in 1st Epistle chap, iv., useth the two parts of Christ's crucifying tc 
express this. 

1. Christ was condemned, and had sentence of death passed on him ; 
* Qu. ' Colossians' ? — Ed. 

Chap. VI. J em otjb salvation. 229 

so arc our sins condemned, for wc having resolved to leave and forsake 
them, to cherish them no longer, have passed the sentence of death on 
them ; and so a Christian hath vowed the death of his sins, as of his known 
enemies ; and though a man loved his lusts never so well, though they 
have heen his old bosom friends, he hath formerly had so much solace 
in, yet now when he hath discovered their treason out, and apprehends 
how they are his enemies, enemies to God, to Christ, and that he must 
now either kill or be killed, that they fight against his soul (as Peter 
speaks), he seeks the death of them by all means, accuseth, arraigneth 
them, by confession, and pleading guilty ; his own mouth condemns them 
daily, hales and drags them before the judgment- seat of God ; and because 
he cannot execute them, he cries, Lord, thou art able to give this lust a 
stab, and its deadly wound, which is ready ever and anon to overcome and 
kill me. And how glad is he when he hears the sentence of death pro- 
nounced against it in the word ; lays his heart open to the ministry of it, 
the reproof of his sin, and suffers the sword of the Spirit to have its full 
blow at it. Oh, my brethren, examine your own hearts : who among you have 
gone thus far in the mortification of his lusts ? Who is at enmity, and daggers 
drawing at them daily? (Who is he that stands in terms with them, as with 
an enemy, nay, rather, doth not cherish them as dearest friends, keeping 
them under their tongues as sweet bits ? How many are there that never 
made prayer against any one sin, that storm at the word when it con- 
demns them ? 

2. As Christ, after he was condemned, was brought to the cross, and 
there executed, crucified, so also the Sprit of God in true Christians comes 
with the power of Christ, naileth his lusts to the cross of Christ, Gal. vi. 14 ; 
and so, 1 Pet. iv. 1, we are said to suffer in the flesh, as Christ did ; and 
the apostle Paul, Rom. vi. 6, useth the same word of crucifying to express 
the one and the other, both of Christ's and ours. As Christ's body, in 
crucifying, was in every member and part put to pain, which in no death 
scarce but that falls out ; not a vein, not a sinew, but was stretched ; so 
also is every member of the body of sin crucified, it reaching to every 
lust, great and small, Gal. v. 24, they all now stretch for it. And 
oh, my brethren, who knows the pains in parting with lusts, but they 
that have done it, and in truth ? And though some have stronger hearts than 
others to endure more pain, yet every lust being as the strings of a man's 
heart, as dear as his life, therefore the parting with these, the crucifying of 
these, must needs be as the breaking of the heart-strings, and making the 
vital sinews crack. Examine yourselves, how many are there of you that 
never parted in earnest with one lust yet, much less with all. 

And then, 3dly, as Jesus Christ being thus crucified gave up the ghost, 
so also doth the Spirit of Christ, in likeness unto this, take away the life 
and power of sin ; at the first stab it hath a deadly wound given it at the 
heart ; and therefore the apostle, in Rom. vi. 2, 3, affirms that believers 
are dead to sin, baptized into the death of Christ, it having a deadly blow 
given it ; and how shall we that are dead live therein ? He argues it is 
absurd and impossible ; how can it be ? Can a man that is dead, or deadly- 
wounded, live ? that is, perform the actions of life with delight constantly, 
for that is to live. Why, he cannot; no more can we (says the apostle) live 
in sin ; that is, we cannot with delight, and in the life of comfort, continue 
in the practice of any of our former sins in a full career, that is, continue 
with delight in the actions of it. For to live in sin, in the 2d verse, is all 
one as to continue in sin, in the 4th verse. My brethren, let us all 


examine ourselves hereby; we came all into the world sinners, and with lusts 
all as lively as ourselves ; and every man, also till that he hath the power 
of Christ's death thus conveyed to him, lives the life of his lusts as well as 
that of his natural life ; performs the actions whereby he satisfies them with as 
much life and delight as he can do those of his natural life, Col. iii. 7. Now 
therefore examine yourselves, whether that you have felt a thorough work 
ever wrought in you or no, by which this power and life of sin was killed, 
and thy sins had and hath a deadly wound given them, which will go with 
them to their graves, and which they could never since recover. Try this 
in thy master lust. Doth a lust live in thy heart still ? live, and is as 
brisk as ever when it is put in, or stirred up in thee, even as a fish in its 
own proper element ? Then thou art not mortified. But dost thou find a 
deadness and stiffness to those sinful delights wherein formerly the comfort 
of thy life consisted, so as that they are all as dead drink to the stomach, 
or as a stone put into a dead man's mouth, and thou cannot find the relish 
that savours, the sweetness and fulness of contentment in them that for- 
merly thou hast done, so that thou art crucified to the world, and the world 
to thee ? This proceedeth from union with Christ's dying unto sin, which 
is likened to his dying for sin. But especially try it in regard of thy course, 
for the apostle says, if that we be dead to 'sin, how shall we live therein ? 
If a man were crucified or dead with Christ, he could not live in his old 
courses : 1 Pet. iv. 1, ' He that hath suffered in the flesh,' that is, whose 
sinful corruption of nature is killed by the power of Christ's death, ' hath 
ceased from sin ; ' that is, the course and practice of any known sin, for 
that is the most capable interpretation can be given of it. My brethren, 
pray consider, either that is not the word of God, or this is not the mean- 
ing of it, or else any one that lives in the practice of any known bosom sin 
is not a Christian. How can then those that live in the lusts of the Gen- 
tiles, as they are termed there, in ver. 4, 5, ' in wantonness, chamberings, 
drnnkenness, uncleanness,' and the like excess of riot, be termed Chris- 
tians ? In 1 John iii. 5-8, speaking of our conformity unto Christ, among 
the rest he makes this as one, that as Christ had no sin in him, so he that 
abides in him continues not in sin ; for so the word must be interpreted, 
for says he, ver. 8, ' Christ appeared to dissolve the works of the devil ; ' 
that is, in those that are his, to put an end to the work or devilish trade of 
sin in themselves. If therefore we be dead with Christ, how shall we con- 
tinue in sin ? When a thief is hanged, doth he not leave the practice of 
his thievery ? And so should we break off our course in sinning if we our- 
selves had ever been on the cross with Christ, and crucified with him. 
Well, my brethren, this know, that none shall have the benefit of his death 
for the forgiveness of sin, that hath not a likeness to it in the death of it in 
himself. And lest it should be thought that sin is not thus truly killed 
with Christ, the apostle goes farther, in Kom. vi. 4, and says that ' we are 
buried also with Christ.' There is also a conformity to his burial, whereby 
is shewn that sin is truly dead. A living man would not suffer himself to 
be buried ; and by the conformity to his burial he means the progress of a 
Christian in the further and daily mortifying of his lusts ; that as a body 
being laid in the grave rots away and consumes, till at length it be 
destroyed, so doth the body of sin (as it is at ver. 6), being crucified, it is 
destroyed also, and that is not till the day of death ; and therein indeed it 
differs from Christ's body, which remained unconsumed in the grave, saw no 
corruption, and remains now glorified in heaven. And therefore examine 
whether sin moulders and decays in thee or no. 

Chap. I.J in oub salvation. 281 


That the work of grace, wrought in us by the Spirit of God in regeneration, is 
a different and higher principle than natural conscience in its greatest eleva- 
tion of light. — The deficiency of natural conscience shewed, and the mistakes 
of men about it detected. 


That all men being under a covenant of works, or a covenant of grace, there 
are two principles of actions, viz., conscience alone in its natural light in the 
one, and supernatural grace tvith its light in the hearts of the other, who are 
regenerate. — The two texts, Rom. ii. 14, 15, and Jer. xxxi. 31-33, 
explained. — That the principle by which the law of God reigns over men is 
conscience. — What notions the philosophers among the heathens had of it. 

For when the Gentiles, which have not the law, do by nature the things con- 
tained in the law, these, having not the law, are a law unto themselves : 
which shew the work of the law written in their hearts, their conscience also 
bearing witness, and their thoughts the mean while accusing or else excusing 
one another. — Rom. II. 14, 15. 

Behold, the days come, saith the Lord, that I icill make a new covenant vjith 
the house of Israel, and with the house of Judah ; not according to the 
covenant that I made with their fathers, in the day that I took them by the 
hand, to bring them out of the land of Egypt (which my covenant they 
brake, although I was an husband unto them, saith the Lord) ; but this 
shall be the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel ; After those 
days, saith the Lord, I will put my law in their inward parts, and write it 
in their hearts ; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. — 
Jek. XXXI. 31-33. 

Having opened the nature of the true work of grace, I shall now, for the 
fuller and larger illustration hereof, subjoin the discovery of its counterfeit, 
which is the work of the law written in the heart by nature, or the powerful 
effects which a natural and enlightened conscience hath in the hearts of 
men remaining unregenerate ; which men in all professions of religion do 
ordinarily mistake in themselves for true and inherent holiness. The use 
and necessity of this discourse is to shew more clearly the nature of true 
sanctification, by the detection of its counterfeit. For things come to be 
distinctly known, as well by discovering the difference of what usually pre- 
tends to be, or is commonly and generally taken, and goes for current 
among men, to be such or such a thing, when it is not, as by defining 
positively what the thing itself is, in the genuine nature of it. We learn 
truths with an advantage (especially spiritual truths) when we compare 


them with the appearance of errors, and sever them from, and extract them 
as spirits out of that dross, and mixture of a deceiving likeness that cleave th 
to them. It will also serve to remove practical mistakes about regenera- 
tion, which are of infinite moment, and yet generally incident unto men. 

Now as the sum of our religion is reduced by the apostle to these two, 
1 Faith, and a good conscience,' 1 Tim. i. 19, faith, which is principium 
credendorum, the principle of things to be believed ; and conscience, which 
is principium agendorum, the principle of things to be done by us ; for as 
the object matter of all religion is reduced to credenda and agenda, so the 
principles within us are answerably thus generally expressed by these two, 
faith and conscience. Faith looks upward to the things of the gospel, and 
takes in all supernatural truths, with application to a man's soul. Con- 
science looks both inward, to our own actings within ; and outward, to the 
law or rule which is to guide us. And it also is the spring to all the 
wheels, and the mover in all provocations to duties, or avocations from 
sins. Now as these two are the two principles (when true and good) of all 
true religion ; so all the imperfect works and counterfeits of the true, which 
are to be found in unregenerate men's hearts and lives, must be reduced 
unto these two also, both as to the principles thereof in their hearts, and 
to the effects of them all in their lives. As there is a false common faith, 
which men do generally mistake for true (and therefore the apostle dis- 
tinguisheth, terming the true, • unfeigned faith,' 1 Tim. i. 5), so there is a 
' pure heart,' and a ' good conscience' in the same place also opened. It 
is a conscience good, with such a goodness as qualifies the heart, and this 
by way of distinction and difference from conscience, which is but natural, 
and the low effects thereof in men unregenerate, which they ordinarily do 
in little matters mistake for sanctification. So then all counterfeit religion 
(I speak of such as is any way serious, and not grossly and merely hypo- 
critical) are either, 1. The effects and workings of conscience, as it is a 
natural principle, and though still remaining defiled in a heart unregenerated, 
yet elevated and enlightened by the word and Spirit ; or, 2. The effects 
of supernatural light in matters of faith joined therewith, and shining into 
an unrenewed understanding, and affecting self-love, with what is suitable 
to it in the things that are revealed. 

Again, all men's conditions falling to be either under the covenant of 
works, or the covenant of grace, hence aU that are enlightened and carried 
on with any powerful effects in the profession of religion, are either acted 
therein by conscience, as the predominant principle, which is the seat of 
the dominion of the law and covenant of works ; or by faith, which is the 
inlet or receptive of the dominion of grace. 

That all men are under one of these covenants is evident by the whole 
cm-rent of the apostle's writings,* who still distinguisheth between works 
and grace as the only two possibly to be supposed ways men take unto 
salvation, ' Not of works (says he), ' but according to grace ; ' and ' you are 
not under the law, but under grace,' Rom. vii. He makes this distinction 
as that which takes in and divides the whole of mankind. And the reason 
is evident from Rom. vii. 1, 4, 6. For every man having been born under 
the law and covenant of works, the law continues to have dominion over 
him, either in commanding or inciting, yea, often in acting and carrying 
him on unto what is commanded thereby, or else binding him over unto 
condemnation. And no man is freed from this until he is married to 
Christ, and so come to have a new nature, together with the privilege of 
* 2 Thess. i. 9 ; Eph. ii. ; Horn, ix., x., xi. 

Chap. I.J in our salvation. 233 

being a subject of grace. And therefore ho continues under it so long as 
he lives in that first estate, for the law's right over him was not for- 
leited by the fall. Now suitably, that every man might come to be subject 
to and sensible of this several dominion over him, according as his condi- 
tion is, there are two principles planted within man, by God suited here- 
unto, and suscipient of each of these. The one is in every man by nature 
(since every man's condition is to be under the law), and that is conscience. 
The other is a supernatural grace, and that is faith. Eph. ii. 8, ' By grace 
ye are saved through faith.' Now Jews and heathens were under the do- 
minion (as explained) of both these,- and also ignorant Christians. But if 
man that remains unregenerate be enlightened by the gospel and the know- 
ledge of the grace of God, although it may be a while doubtful unto himself 
or others unto which covenant or dominion he belongs or is the subject of, 
yet in the issue and event his spirit doth fall, and will act or be acted 
according as his condition is, and he will lean either to the one or the 
other as his lord and sovereign. If a man that is under the covenant of 
works takes in the present over- powering light of the doctrine of grace, and 
the truth thereof, which hath good and blessed news for every man to listen 
to, yet in the issue and event he will fall into one of these two cases or 
conditions. He will either come to abuse the grace of God to wantonness 
through self-love, which remaining unsubdued to the dominion of grace, 
makes use of the knowledge of grace underhand to back and strengthen that 
corruption in him, in which the power of sin doth lie, and so self-love, in 
a way of presumption (which hath the appearance of the strength of faith 
in that man), eats out the active power of conscience in him, and so he 
comes to fall under the dominion or stroke of the covenant of works more 
strongly than ever ; and the law comes to bind him over to a deeper con- 
demnation when conscience shall come again to be awakened ; and even 
the gospel itself, which he knew, will be turned into a sorer avenger than 
the law of itself would have been. And this is the case of such as swallow 
down the gospel whole, and so make shipwreck of conscience through their 
presumption on the principles about the doctrine or application of it to 

Or 2. The case of one that is enlightened will be, that his conscience 
being enlightened and awakened by the law, continues to act and provoke 
him unto doing in religion in a legal strain and way, and carries on duties 
upon the wheels of legal motives, and so the law becomes the predominant 
principle, to over-top and over-sway evangelical faith. And that it doth so 
is but suitable to the state of the man ; for as he is still under the covenant 
of works (self not being broken, nor Christ having slain the law to him) so 
answerably the best and most active swaying principle in him is that which 
is the seat and throne of the law's dominion, namely conscience ; and so 
the best of that man's religion is but the actings of a legal conscience. 
And how he compounds with the gospel, and subordinates his apprehen- 
sions of it, is too long here to insert. 

So then (that I may set out that subject I mean to treat of), it is not my 
purpose here to treat of temporary faith, the counterfeit of true saving 
faith, but singly and simply an enlightened natural conscience and the 
effects thereof, as they are or may be mistaken for true sanctification, and 
the effects of it. And the eminent distinction and difference between these 
two is, by these two texts, Bom. ii. 14, 15, and Jer. xxxi. 31-33 compared, 
clearly held forth, both for the Sri and the dion thereof; the one speaking 
* That is, 4 the law and conscience.' — En. 


of the effect of the law written in the heart by nature (thus, Rom. ii.), the 
other (Jer. xxxi.) of the writing the law in the inward parts, as the eminent 
and proper fruit of the covenant of grace, and that in distinction from the 

The first text, Rom ii., gives instance in the Gentiles (whom all acknow- 
ledge under wrath and unregeneracy), and their having the effects of the law 
written by nature. And above all other effects of the law, he instanceth 
in conscience accusing and excusing, as that which of all other argues the 
law written there ; yea, and his scope in bringing in this example of the 
Gentiles is in the coherence of it to convince the carnal Jews, whom he 
had taken to task to convince them in this chapter that they were unre- 
generate and in their natural condition, as he had done in the former, who 
rested in the law, and the effects thereof upon them for their justification 
and acceptation with God, thereupon 'making their boast of God,' ver. 17. 
Having proved the Gentiles to be under wrath, chap, i., he then comes 
upon the Jew therewith, and improves their example as a special engine 
to unsettle and overthrow the Jew in his carnal boast, by giving him to 
consider, — 

1. That even the Gentiles, whom they accounted unholy, though they 
had not the law delivered by revelation from God to them (for God dealt 
not so with any nation, &c), yet had the effect or substance of the outward 
precepts of the law written in their hearts. 

2. Those letters of the law were so powerful and prevailing in many of 
them, that the prints of them were published and stamped in fair characters 
in their lives ; that is, they acted according to it : ver. 14, ' They do by 
nature the things contained in the law ; ' and, ver. 15, ' shew ' or give 
demonstration that the effect of the ' law is written there.' 

And 3. The eminent principle or seat of this effect of the law he makes 
to be their consciences, ver. 15. For he gives that as the eminent instance 
of the law written in their hearts, that it did /xira^u aKkri'kuv, excuse and 
accuse ; that is, by course and alteration* between themselves singly or in 
their own breast (as the margin also hath it), it did some while excuse and 
approve, pronounce a sentence of absolution and justification, both to their 
actions and persons, when they do well ; as also when they do ill, it again 
at other times accuseth. 

4. Now from this instance of the Gentiles he would have the carnal Jews 
themselves reflect that they had indeed the advantage of having the law and 
word of God outwardly revealed to them, over and above the bare light of 
nature, and so more fully and clearly than the Gentiles had ; and had also 
the « more excellent things' thereof: ver. 18, ' Thou approvest the things 
that are more excellent, being instructed out of the law.' All which came 
to pass, because they had the same principle of conscience, he had spoken 
of, which the Gentiles had ; which principle was apprehensive of the right- 
eousness of the law, revealed to them of God, and so approved of it, and 
received it from God, and was apprehensive of its subjection thereunto, and 
thereupon had set them a-work to act according to that eternal word. But 
yet in all this (says he) thou that art a Jew actest, at the best, but in the 
same sphere, and upon the same foundation in nature, that is found in the 
heathens by nature. And though thy conscience comes to know more 
excellent things by revelation from the word, and so to act outwardly more 
gloriously from thence, yet the inward principle is one and the same in thy 
heart that is in the others, namely, natural conscience enlightened, for 
* Qu. 'alternation'?— Ed. 

Chap. I.] in our salvation. 285 

magis ct minus nan variant speciem. These are but further degrees within 
the same kind, and internally and ultimately it is but tho nature in both 
lhat all is resolved into. 

Yea, and 5thly, he urgeth them from the 21st verse, Thou that art a 
Jew (says he) in thine obedience and conformity to that law given thee, 
fallest more short, according to the compass of thy principles and light of 
conscience, than the Gentiles do, according to what they know by the light 
of mere nature in their sphere. Yea, and oftentimes some things (which 
their consciences keep them from) thou sinnest against thy light therein. 
Now then his conclusion is, Be thine own judge : ver. 26, 27, ' Therefore 
if the uncircumcision keep the righteousness of the law' (that is within his 
compass of light, so far as he knows, as really and as conscientiously from 
a principle within him, as thou canst be supposed to do thy law, whilst but 
from the same principle), shall not he, by the analogy and proportion of 
that rule by which thou dost judge of thy estate before God, ' be also justi- 
fied ?' And ' shall not his uncircumcision be counted circumcision,' and 
so in his measure and proportion be accepted of by God as well as thou ? 
It is not that Paul affirms this, as if a heathen should be saved ; but he 
useth and urgeth it as a conviction to the Jews, according to the principles 
they judged cf themselves by, leaving it to them to judge of themselves by 
analogous reason. And therefore his last conclusion and resolution is, 
ver. 29, that it is none of these principles mentioned that is true holiness, 
but regeneration or circumcision of the heart, as the apostle elsewhere 
termeth conversion: Col. ii. 11, ' In whom also ye are circumcised with 
the circumcision made without hands, in putting off the body of the sins 
of the flesh by the circumcision of Christ.' And ' he is a Jew' (says he) 
' that is one inwardly : and circumcision is that of the heart in the spirit,' 
which is a principle beyond both natural conscience in the heathen, or 
enlightened conscience in the Jew, and all the works or effects thereof in 
either. And this, says Paul, you will find all true (as the 16th verse hath 
it, which comes after that parenthesis of verses 13-15), ' In that day when 
God shall judge the secrets of men by Jesus Christ,' who by discovering 
the secrets of all hearts, will make a full discovery of these things, and 
the practical differences between them, and thereupon difference in men's 

2. The other place, Jer. xxxi., is most adequate to this general scope of 
mine ; for the full direct and professed intent thereof is to hold forth this 
very distinction and broad difference that is between the entertainment of 
the law in the heart of a carnal Jew, with the effects thence ensuing, and 
the writing the law in the heart by grace. And you may observe that he 
contents not himself nakedly with setting forth the effects of the covenant 
of grace, that it is a writing the law in the heart ; but sets by it, for illus- 
tration thereof, the consideration and remembrance of the former covenant 
by Moses in giving the law, with the effects thereof, ver. 32. Yea, he 
brings it in by express distinction from this other, ' Not according' (says he) 
1 to the covenant I made with their fathers in the day that I took them by 
the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt.' Now the effects of that 
covenant upon the most, or on the generality of the Jews (though secretly 
the new covenant, which was conveyed with it in the types, did then work 
in many of the elect), you have lively deciphered at the very first giving 
the law, unto which very transaction Jeremiah most aptly refers, and 
sends us to understand this difference. You have it, Deut. v. (where the 
story of giving the law is rehearsed from ver. 5), at verses 24-27, &c, you 


find how their consciences made them sensible of the greatness and glory 
of God who gave the law : ver, 24, 25, ' And they said, Behold, the Lord 
our God hath shewed us his glory and his greatness, and we have heard 
his voice out of the midst of the fire. We have seen this day that he doth 
talk with man, and he liveth. Now, therefore, why should we die ? For 
this great fire will consume us : if we hear the voice of the Lord our God 
any more, then we shall die.' And these apprehensions of theirs did work 
up unto resolutions to ' do whatever God should say.' ' I have heard' 
(says God thereupon, ver. 28), ' the voice of the words of this people, 
which they have spoken unto thee : they have well said all that they have 
spoken.' And yet, at ver. 29, you read how the main was wanting, ' Oh that 
there were such an heart in them, that they would fear me, and keep all 
my commandments always, that it might be well with them, and with their 
children for ever !' Now the thing that was wanting was the law written 
in the heart (as Jeremiah discovers it to be), as that which, with respect to 
the more general and more apparent and professed workings of it in men, 
was reserved for the days of the New Testament, as the fruit of the cove- 
nant of grace. Now this writing the law in the heart, spoken of by Jere- 
miah, the apostle (Heb. x. 16) doth genuinely interpret of the work of 
saving sanctification, as it is distinct from that of justification, and is pecu- 
liar to them that are justified. 

So then upon all accounts these texts do fully warrant, and give bottom 
to the proposed subject; namely, the distinction of the effects of the law in 
natural conscience, from the writing of the law in the heart by regeneration. 
The main and more substantial difference it holds forth to be this, that God, 
in giving the old covenant, came upon and took man's natural old heart 
without renewing it, and gave the law thereunto, and tried how it would 
work upon it ; but in this new covenant he gives a new heart and a new 
spirit, writing the law in the very inwards, and makes it the groundwork of 
all his other workings. 

Further, ere I come unto these particular heads which are to fill up the 
bulk of this intended discourse, I must premise one thing as introductory 
to what follows. 

That which I premise is this assertion. That principle or faculty in 
the heart of man, which is the seat, throne, or sceptre, by which the law 
of God comes to rule over and to have these effects in the hearts of men, 
is conscience, by means of which it is said, that ' the law hath dominion 
over a man as long as he lives ' ; that is, whilst he lives in his natural condi- 
tion, Rom. vii. 1 compared with ver. 4. This faculty is the Zion or Tower 
of David in the soul, from whence the law goes forth to the outmost ends 
thereof. To this purpose, you may observe how the apostle here, when he 
speaketh of the law written in the Gentiles' hearts, maketh especial, yea, 
only mention of this, and of no other faculty, because this faculty of con- 
science is that first and most immediate seat or subject of this writing of 
the law by nature, and is also the great officer of state, betrusted with 
the executive power of that law, to see it done and performed. Which 
accordingly both urgeth the heart of man thereto, as well as after that 
actions are done, it hath the office of a witness, under the great judge, to 
accuse, or excuse, and to serve his writs upon a man. 

You that are versed in the writings of the wisest philosophers for morality, 
viz., Plato and the Stoics, Seneca, Epictetus, Hierocles, and Marcus 
Antoninus, &c, you find them still to cry up and magnify in man as his 
supreme guide and judge, oedog Xoyog, recta ratio, right reason, which they 

Chap. I.] in our salvation. 237 

term a branch of God, and tfxijtfrgM roZ Qsov, the Sceptre of God, yea, God 
in a man, and many such eulogies they give forth of it. Now by right 
reason they meant primarily that practical part of reason in the mind, which 
guides a man in his actions according to the eternal law of God (as they 
speak) or the mind of God, which they termed the principal and primary 
law. So Tully* expressly speaks in his second book l>c Legibus, in the namo 
of all the wisest philosophers. And Hierocles upon Pythagoras his verses 
speak answerably 6 Xoyig/Mog roug Qzioug vouovg VKods^d/xsvog. It is reason 
taking in the divine laws of God ; and so it is dixaarrig clygvxvog savrw 
yivtrai. It becomes the most vigilant judge to a man's self, f And although 
these heathens sometimes used the word conscience even as we Christians 
do, yet more sparingly ; and when they did, it was usually intended by 
them of one part c its office, viz., that after actions are done by us, it doth 
accordingly torture and disquiet, or refresh and rejoice a man, as he doth 
good or evil. Thus Tully I deciphers his sense of recta ratio, or right 
reason, to be a true and certain law within us, which calls upon us to what 
is our duty, and pricks us on to do well by commanding us, and restrains 
from evil by forbidding us with terrors ; which, said he, the wisest of 
the heathen took to be the mind of God himself, who by that reason in 
men did order men by commands or restraint, as by a supreme or 
sovereign law. 

Hence therefore, in their usual language, to obey God, and to live accord- 
ing to right reason, were all one ; which they also termed living according to 
nature, as they accounted right reason to be. And what is all this, but as 
the learned Selden § makes the interpretation of these and the like speeches 
(citing of them) but that which in other terms themselves, and we Christians 
do call conscience. And Chrysostom afore him, ' When God formed man 
at first,' saith he, ' he put into him a natural law ; and what that law of 
nature is, conscience hath explained it unto us, and of itself hath made 
manifest to us the cognisance both of things honest and that are otherwise.' 
Conscience is that only principle in a man, under whose cognisance comes 
all that hath the notion of what is morally good or evil, and which with one 
and the same eye vieweth a rule or law forbidding evil or commanding 
good; and together therewith do we take a glance of God, as the supreme 
judge, giving that law, and backing it with threatenings or promises of re- 
wards. And this the etymology of the name denotes, Conscientia, quasi 
cum, alio sciens, viz., with God, and from this knowledge of God, which it 
carries about with it, together with its being a rule or law, it is that that 
obligation, power, or force of it doth arise which binds a man, though no 
creature doth look on to be a witness of his sin, and so he becomes ' a law 
unto himself.' And conformably to this, as being the truth, the apostle 

* Hanc video sapientissimorum fuisse sententiam ; legem esse seternum quiddarm 
quod universum mundum regeret. Ita principem legem illam et ultimam mentem 
dicebant, omnia ratione aut cogentis aut vetantia Dei. — Cic. De Legibus, lib. 2. 

t Lex vera atque princeps apta ad jubendum et ad vetandum ratio est recta summi 
Jovis. — Ibid. 

J Est quidem vera lex recta ratio, constans, sempiterna, quse vocat ad officium 
jubendo, a fraude deterret. — De Rep., lib. 3, apud Lactant., cap. 8. And in bis book 
De Legibus, lib. 2 : Ad recte faciendum impellens ; et banc video sapientissimam 
fuisse sententiam, illam principem mentem dicebant aut cogentis aut vetantis Dei. 
Xlycji di ogdu i 7tii < ^id^ai 7ia.i @sw ravrov stiri. — Hierocles in Pythag. Car, 

\ Quibus verbis id quod ipsis pbilosopbis a paganis aliis non raro, to avmioog, in vilse 
peragenda? ratione, seu Conscientia dicitur, optime designatur. — Selden, de Jure Natu- 
ral}, &c. lib. 1 cap. 8. 


speaks, ' Be subject for conscience sake,' Rom. xiii. 5, which is elsewhere 
rendered, to obey God. And hence also Paul termeth the leading of a good 
and regular life a ' living in all good conscience before God,' Acts xxiii. 1. 
The baving done which Paul doth attribute to himself, even whilst he was 
under his pharisaism, and he terms it living in good conscience, because 
this conscience was that principle which took in the law from God, and so 
did provoke him to act outwardly according to it, which hath a goodness 
in its kind, and therefore is termed good. And it is said to be living in a 
good conscience, because no man doth make conscience of anything at any 
time, but it is with an eye to a deity more or less, as he is enlightened, be 
he a Jew or Gentile, or a professor of Christianity. And in all these it is 
conssience, whether truly sanctified or not, which is that rb Tiyovpbvr/.ov, 
which, as Hierocles' * word is, is the suscipient of the divine laws. It is 
that province of reason, which lies open unto light from God to come in at, 
and to urge and enforce obedience, and which is capable and apprehensive 
of what God shall in that kind speak. It is the judge of good and evil 
moral, not only of right and wrong between man and man, as Gallio spake, 
but of things honest and wicked. It is communis intelligentia, qua non 
solum jus et injuria dijudicantur, sed omnino omnia honesta et turpia, as 
Cicero speaks. And it judgeth of them with application to all particular 
actions, to direct, provoke, restrain, or if the action be done, to excuse or 
accuse according to its judgment, and that in the name of a deity or god. 
Insomuch as I may apply here what Paul says in another though like case, 
4 What things soever the law says, it saith to them that are under the law,' 
Rom. iii. 9. I may add, whatever the law saith without us, is a con- 
science witbin us, the principle capable, according to the light received from 
thence, to urge it upon the rest of the faculties, so as these phrases are equi- 
valent, to be under the law, and to be under conscience : to be ' concerning 
the law blameless,' and to * live in all good conscience.' And the goodness 
of conscience there spoken of by Paul, is but a conformity of his outward 
conversation to the light of the law in his conscience. 

And by the way, let me add this, that those that say there is no use of 
the moral law to a Christian, may as well say that there is no more use of that 
faculty of conscience in the soul of a Christian. Put out that faculty out 
of man's heart, if you tear out that other, namely, the obliging part of the 
law. Even as if God would annul colours and light, he must also take away 
and close up the sense of sight. 


That the natural light of conscience in unregenerate men hath a great influence 

on their actions. 

Now these things being premised, there are three parts which fill up the 
body of that discourse which I intend. 

I. That in men whom the Scriptures pronounce unregenerate, this prin- 
ciple of conscience hath had great and powerful effects upon their hearts. 

* , TLt ! <xoyjig'n\arrojvo Qihgrov avdeuirov vo/uov avruip vaixov ey/.urs9^xi, xairiTors 
effri vofiog (pveizog ; rb cvviibog fifth diqzftuai xai durodiday.rov itoiriffi rqv yvuffiv ruv 

ntthJSn xul tSjv bv toioutuiv. o VKods^a/Asvog roiig dsloug vof&oug Xoyifffibg Hierocles 

in aurea earmina Pythagoras.. [It is only the last sentence of this extract that is from 
Hierocles. The rest is from Chrysostom, Orat. xii. ad Pop. Ant.'] — Ed. 


II. That these effects men of all professions, Jews, heathens, or nomi- 
nal Christians, are apt to mistake, in the judgments which they pass, con- 
cerning their own state and condition, when they think that an observanca 
of the dictates of conscience will make them acceptable to God. Yea, and 
if they be professors of Christianity (that are unregenerate), and so here of 
grace and regeneration, they take this to be true holiness, or sanctiheation. 
I shall also herewith give the reasons and grounds of this mistake. 

III. I shall make a discovery of this great counterfeit, and of its deficiency, 
and of its falling short of grace, in the light of it, and in the effects of it, 
together with a detection and conviction of those mistakes. 

I. In discoursing of the first head, there are two things to be treated of. 

1. I shall prove that in men whom the Scripture pronounceth unregene- 
rate, there are such powerful effects of conscience to be found. 

2. I shall shew what those effects particularly are. 

1. To prove that, in unregenerate men, there are powerful effects of con- 
science, I shall give instance in three sorts of men, in whom God hath 
given demonstration thereof, how far, and how high, this principle of con- 
science may and hath been elevated, and what effects it may have, and 
yet fall short of the glory of God, thereby more to magnify his sanctifying 

(1.) The first instance is of heathens under mere nature, which the writ- 
ings of the heathens are records of, and which are indeed the truest com- 
ments upon this treatise of Rom. ii. 

(2.) The second instance is of Jews under the law, whereof the Pharisees, 
and the carnal Jews under the Old Testament, are evidences. All the 
Scribes and Pharisees (whatever some of them might be) were not gross 
hypocrites, but many were serious in what they did, and their consciences 
being greatly enlightened in the law, they acted according unto conscience. 
We have an instance, both of that young man, who said he had kept the 
commandments from his youth, and also of the scribe : Mark xii. 32-34, 
1 And the scribe said unto him, Well, Master, thou hast said the truth : for 
there is one God ; and there is none other but he : and to love him with 
all thy heart, and with all thy understanding, and with all thy soul, and 
with all thy strength, and to love his neighbour as himself, is more than 
all whole burnt- offerings and sacrifices. And when Jesus saw that he 
answered discreetly, he said unto him, Thou art not far from the kingdom of 
God.' He had in his light pitched upon the first commandment of duties 
to be directed immediately to God himself, and his conscience rested not 
in outward performances, sacrifices and burnt-offerings, but the light in it 
had dictated to him further, although it was not able to mould his heart 
thereunto. For he says expressly, that ■ to love God with all the heart, 
and with all the understanding, and with all the soul, and with all the 
strength, and to love his neighbour as himself, is more than all whole 
burnt-offerings and sacrifices.' And Christ, that discerned his heart, gives 
him this approbation of him : • Thou art not far from the kingdom of God ;' 
which for that mere notion, if this scribe had been in his life a gross hypo- 
crite, Christ would never have given. But yet this man, wanting that love 
to God whereof his conscience had the light (for conscience, never so much 
enlightened, will never work love to God), he fell short (as the word else- 
where is), for otherwise there is not any that thus truly love God, who is 
far from the kingdom of God, 1 Cor. ii. 9. Paul also giveth this record of 
many of the Jews his countrymen : Rom. x. 2, 'I bear them record, they 
have a zeal of God ;' that is, a study and care to please God in keeping of 


the law (of the works and righteousness whereof he there speaks, and had 
spoken, chap ix., the last foregoing verses), which zeal in their affections 
conscience had provoked and stirred up. 

But the eminentest instance of all other in that kind is Paul himself, 
whom God did set up, before conversion, as the highest pattern in the 
Jewish religion ; as after conversion, in the Christian. Paul speaking of 
himself, whilst a pharisee still, tells us how zealous his religion made him, 
as to the persecuting the opposite party, so to the observation of that right- 
eousness of the law, Gal. i. 14, and Phil. iii. 6, ' Concerning zeal, perse- 
cuting the church ; touching the righteousness which is in the law, blame- 
less :' that is, I was so truly zealous for the law, that I persecuted what 
way was opposite to it. Now, what made him so ? It was conscience, 
Acts xxvi. 9, he ' verily thought that he ought' to do so. Now that prin- 
ciple in us which convinceth that we ought to do a thing, is conscience, 
Acts xxiii. 1. That apology which Paul, being set before the council, was 
about to make, but was broke oft* by the high priest, and the tumult, runs 
thus, ' Men and brethren, I have lived in all good conscience before God 
until this day.' Many of you are not ignorant how most interpreters do 
understand this speech as relating to, and taking in the whole of his life, 
not of Christianity only, but even in Judaism also, for he doth not by any 
express word date it from his conversion. He doth not say, since I 
turned Christian, or was converted to the faith ; but only says, ' until this 
day,' which indefinitely includes the whole of his life till then. And his 
manner was, in telling the story of his conversion, to begin with his exact- 
ness in observing the law before his conversion (which he was about to 
relate, but that he is interrupted here), which outward obedience, because of 
its conformity to the principle of it, is frequently termed a good conscience, 
that is, a good or regular life conformed to and springing from conscience. 
And that which Paul here intendeth in reference to that part of his life 
under pharisaism, is all one and the same with what elsewhere he saith, 
Phil. iii. 6, ' touching the righteousness which is in the law, blameless.' 

But there were a third sort, in whom conscience enlightened may be sup- 
posed yet further improved in the effect of it, when yet it fell short of grace. 
There were those who were supernaturally enlightened by the gospel, of 
whom Paul, Heb. vi., and Christ's parables speak. Such light the under- 
standing of man, not renewed, is capable of, and it lies exposed for God to 
shoot into it, without infusing a new habit, or spiritualising that faculty. 
It lies exposed also unto influences and effects of the promises of the gos- 
pel, working upon self-love in the will and affections, with tastings of the 
powers of the world to come. Now when the light of the gospel is added 
to the light of the law, and when a supernatural light of things revealed in 
the gospel is added to that of conscience in the law, conscience cometh to 
have its dominions enlarged, and is more strengthened and backed hereby. 
Now in such, so wrought on by the gospel, and also the law, and in whoso 
hearts both these meet, the effects must needs be supposed more powerful 
and vigorous, because there is brought in a stronger light of God himself, 
in the efficacy of knowing whom, more or less, the obligation and power of 
conscience lies. An instance that mentions the conjunction of both these 
in express words is hard perhaps to meet withal ; although, where such 
supernatural enlightening in things of the gospel falls out to be in such as 
have fallen away, it must necessarily be supposed that there is a more 
vigorous actuating and stirring that light and principle of conscience that 
doth accompany the same ; especially considering that the workings of the 

Chap. II.] in our salvation. 241 

law upon conscience is that which prepares men's hearts (both that aro 
saved or othcrwiso fall away) for their listening after, and so receiving in, 
the supernatural truths of the gospel. Howsoever, thus much is evident 
to the thing in hand, that these Jews, of all other, who were of the sect of 
the Pharisees, that made conscience of the law, when they came to bo en- 
lightened by the gospel, became the raisers and t'omenters of that great 
opposition to the gospel which was the ruin of many professors in those 
primitive times. Of these Pharisees mention is made, Acts xv. 5, ' There 
rose up certain of the sect of the Pharisees who believed ' (and some, as in 
charit}* we are to think, savingly, who yet were the defenders of that great 
error), ' saying, It was needful to circumcise men that believed, and to 
teach them to keep the law of Moses ;' that is, the whole of it, which cir- 
cumcision did oblige unto. As these men had faith superadded, so I may 
say of them, as Paul of some Gentiles, they had a ' conscience of that idol,' 
the law, to that day ; and their conscience having been inured to that yoke, 
knew not how to discharge itself so soon of that subjection (I speak as to 
that sense mentioned), and so by that addition of faith, conscience was more 
provoked to be zealous for the law, and to observe it, that they might keep 
in with God. 

Now, what the estate of these particular persons there mentioned was, 
we know not, nor the issue of them as to God ; yet this we are sure of, that 
many of the followers of that doctrine, which these there first did broach, 
and who had embraced the faith upon a supernatural light (for else none in 
those times would easily have professed it) did out of the same principle 
of conscience urge and profess obedience to that whole law of Moses, and 
set out therein with the same zeal in both (for the reality of it) that these 
Pharisees, that were the first authors of that opinion, did. It was the pro- 
fession of making conscience, and of their obligation to God's command, 
which was the ground of that zeal ; and yet we are sure that many of them 
are branded to have been apostates to the faith in the end. And I observe 
that when Paul twice speaks of this kind of professors (as he vouchsafes to 
name them, Tit. i. 16), who thus urged the observation of the law as well 
as faith in the gospel, he still makes mention withal of faith and conscience. 
For the latter was that which these so much pretended ; for the obligation 
of the law (they contended for) did principally respect conscience as the 
seal of it, and as subject to it, and over which it had dominion in men. 
Thus Paul writes, 1 Tim. i., concerning some at Ephesus who pressed the 
law in the sense these Pharisees had done, as well as they pressed faith, as 
appears by ver. 7, 8. And because they did urge this upon pretence of 
conscience, therefore, in opposition to that religion of theirs, which they 
made up both of law and gospel in an untoward mixture, Paul professeth 
the true religion (or that part of it which relateth to the commandments) to 
be this, ver. 5-7, ' Now the end of the commandment is charity, out of a 
pure heart, and of a good conscience, and of faith unfeigned : from which 
some having swerved, have turned aside unto vain jangling ; desiring to be 
teachers of the law ; understanding neither what they say, nor whereof they 
affirm.' He by these cords* intimates to us, that though these men did 
profess the same faith in Christ, yet their zeal to the law, for which they 
pretended conscience, was the cause of their swerving from both, they 
never having had the true genuine or saving principle of either. And 
therefore, in his enumeration of the saving principles of faith and a good 
conscience, he upon occasion of them is forced to distinguish upon these 
* Qu. ' words ' ?— Ed. 



principles, as is evident by those cords,* ' The end of the commandment is 
charity, out of a pure heart, of a good conscience, and faith unfeigned.' 
And why is it he should use this distinction there, when he had occasion 
to speak of these men, but to put the difference between faith, and such a 
conscience, and principle of zeal in religion, which is defiled ? In distinc- 
tion unto which he calls the principle of true holiness, a good conscience, 
as he had characterised true and saving faith with this of herf ' unfeigned 
faith,' and a ' pure heart' as the effect of both these ; for a purified heart 
is expressly made the effect of faith, Acts xv. 9. So then there is a con- 
science zealous of religion, that is joined with a pure heart, and there is a 
conscience that is joined with a defiled heart, and that in men enlightened 
in religion, which Paul, in his Epistle to Titus, thus expresseth, in words 
near akin to those he useth in Timothy of the same sort of professors : 
' Unto the pure are all things pure : but unto them that are defiled and 
unbelieving,' that have a faith that purifies not the heart, but leaves it still 
in its natural defilements, and so as good as no faith, and therefore he 
terms them unbelievers still, ' even in their mind and conscience,' which 
yet are the supremest and purest pari in them, even these ' remain defiled,' 
however enlightened, and whatever conscience of the law they do pretend. 
Now, therefore, if their consciences remain defiled, saith he, no wonder if 
in the end of their profession their fives prove also such, ver. 16 ; for as 
Christ says, ' If the light be darkness, how great is that darkness ! But if 
the eye be single, the whole body is full of light.' And in these two dis- 
courses compared, Paul discovers and rips up the inwards of true profes- 
sion and false. In the practice of religion mentioned in the one, viz., that 
of Titus, he resolves apostasy and falling away into its true causes. And 
in this other, to Timothy, speaking of the contrary, sincere obedience, that 
holds out to the end, he resolves his perseverance unto its true causes also. 
In the one he tells us that their consciences, which having been enlightened, 
had been the groundwork of their zeal for the law, and of obedience to it, 
had yet continued and remained defiled notwithstanding all that light. 
In the other he tells us that they have obtained such a ' good conscience ' 
and ' faith unfeigned,' as had ' purified the heart.' Neither is his scope in 
his Epistle to Titus only to shew what at present their consciences were 
become through sinning, but to resolve things into their causes (as in that 
of Timothv he had done), shewing that this defect had been in their pro- 
fession from the first of it, in that their consciences and minds had re- 
mained in their natural defilement. And thence all their best actions, as 
well as their outward legal observations, had become defiled to them, and 
in the end had wrought out that light and goodness that had any impression 
upon them. 

2. I come now to shew what effects a natural conscience may and doth 
produce in men unregenerate. The instances I give of these effects shall 
be only such as have been found in heathens and Jews, of whom it must 
needs be acknowledged that they were not renewed. And such effects, 
even in professors of Christianity who are not savingly regenerated, are 
still but of the same kind, only are more heightened by the addition of 
gospel fight, more clearly revealing God ; and also perhaps in such per- 
sons these effects are extended objectively unto more duties than came to 
the cognizance of either Jew or Gentile. The reason why this addition of 
gospel and supernatural light must needs increase the same effects more 
oowerfully, is because (as I said) conscience hath in all men two things 
* Qu ' words ' ?— Ed. Qu. ' other ' ?— Ed. 

Chap. II.] in our salvation. 213 

still in its cyo : 1. The law, or rule ; 2. God as the judge giving that law; 
and from its eyeing, moro or loss, God as the judge, doth arise that autho- 
rity that is in the dictates of conscience. And hence, as the conscience 
doth more clearly and fully take in light from God, and is thereby con- 
vinced of him and his greatness, and that the rules given are from him, 
proportionably must these effects of conscience become more powerful, and 
work more strongly upon the heart ; yet so as still this light, and these effects, 
are but of the same kind with those that are found in heathens or Jews. 

(1.) I shall give instances of these effects in respect of what is good. 

[l.J Conscience in a natural and unrcgenerate man may and doth often 
pass an act, both of assent and approbation, to what is a good and holy 
duty, and to what the law says, or to the duties and commands thereof, 
that they are good, and just, and right ; otherwise it could not accuse a 
man for what is evil, unless it, secretly approved of what is good. Video 
meliora proboque, says Medea in Ovid : I see what is better, and approve 
of it, though I choose and pursue the worse. Seneca* also, speaking of 
the worst of men, says that virtue hath that amiableness in it that it is in- 
grafted in those that are most wicked, to approve the things that are good 
and best. They are heathens that speak these things ; and as for the 
Jews, Paul expressly says, Rom. ii. 18, ' Thou approvest the things that 
are more excellent,' which is a phrase suitable to the other, Proho meliora. 
And this is one respect for which they are said to be under the law, and 
the law to have power or dominion over a man, as Rom. vii. 1, 2, even 
because men have a principle in them capable of its love, and naturally 
subjected thereunto, which maketh them acknowledge and own it for their 
lord. Now, it could no way bring men under that subjection and bondage 
but by this, that there is something in this principle of conscience unto 
which this law approves its equity and justness ; or, to use the apostle's 
phrase, 2 Cor. iv. 2, ' commendeth itself to every man's conscience.' And 
thus the law, held forth in a godly man's life, in the concrete, approves 
itself to a wicked man. Saul could not but acknowledge of David, ' Thou 
art more righteous than I.' And in the abstract it doth it much more. 
In the story of the Acts, the apostle appeals to their consciences (as 
Socrates before had done to his heathen judges), whether it were not better 
to obey God than men ; for their natural consciences could not but so ad- 
judge it. 

[2.] Natural conscience not only assents to what the law commands as 
good, but it commends it to a man as his duty, and lays it as an injunction 
upon him to do it. So says Paul, ' I verily thought with myself that I 
ought to do many things,' &c, Acts xxvi. 9. Therefore it is called con- 
scientia by some, because it lays an obligation upon a man ; and so it is 
quasi concludcm scientia, which binds him to his good behaviour. 

[3.] It provoketh, yea, prevails, with men to do what it shews them to 
be good, and their particular duty. It is not a sleeping, idle principle, but 
active ; for so says the apostle of the heathens, Rom. ii. 14, ' They did by 
nature the things of the law,' as instigated thereto by conscience. For he 
renders that as the ground of it, that ' they were a law unto themselves.' 
So Herod, as you know, ' did many things' which John the Baptist urged 
upon his conscience out of the word. 

[4. J In these their acting what is good, the workings of conscience are 
the main engines which set them to work, and not simply outward respects. 

* Adeo gratiosa est virtus ut insitum etiain malis sit probare meliora. — Seneca, 
Ep. i. 


Thus Paul resolves what he did in his unregeneracy unto this principle : 
1 1 verily thought I ought to do it,' says he ; and so did what he did, Acts 
ix. 15. It also appears in this, that a man will go against all outward re- 
spects merely to satisfy his conscience, as Judas did, when he confessed 
and restored the money for which he had betrayed Christ ; wherein he did 
an act cross to the dearest lusts in him, his credit and his covetousness. 
Conscientia satisfaciamus, says Seneca, nihil in famam lalo remits : Let us 
satisfy conscience, no matter for credit. 

[5.] Hence also natural conscience may in these actions have a real re- 
spect to God, to whom (as was said) conscience looks, and from whom it 
fetcheth its bindiug power ; so as the man takes his command in, as a con- 
sideration that moves him : John xvi. 2, 'He that killeth you shall think 
he doth God good service,' that is, he shall look upon it as a service done 
to God, and have some respect to him in it. And though this is spoken of 
such actions as materially in themselves were not service to God, but the 
contrary, yet the inward motive it proceeded from was, that they judged it 
a service unto God. And therefore when it falls to be in itself a duty, con- 
science presseth it much more, and urgeth it upon this motive, Rom. x. 1. 
The carnal Jew is said to have a zeal of God, or for God. Thus also we 
read of carnal and wicked men who out of awe, and fear, and respect to 
him do forbear some sins : ' It is in my power,' says Laban to Jacob, Gen. 
xxxi. 29 : 'but the God of your father spake to me, saying, Take heed thou 
speak to Jacob neither good nor evil.' God commanded Balaam also that 
he should not curse the Israelites ; and Balaam kept to that command, and 
durst not go outwardly cross to it, although inwardly he desired leave to 
have done it, that so he might be rewarded by Balak. Yea, he therefore 
durst not do it, because of the word of the Lord, Num. xxii. 18. So Cyrus 
says of Ezra, Ezra i. 2, that ' the God of heaven had charged him to build 
a house for him.' 

[6.] When a man hath done what conscience, and God in his conscience, 
have commanded, he hath much peace in it, for it excuseth him, as the text, 
Bom. ii. 15, says. Thus a heathen also could say, Becte fecisse merx est; 
it is reward enough to do well. Therefore Paul's heart was kept alive, 
Bom. vii., in joy and peace, by doing what the law required ; so also a man 
will be exceeding glad when such a sin is avoided, or if a sin take not full 
effect, as Darius was glad when Daniel was alive, Dan. vi. 23. 

(2.) I shall give instances of the workings of conscience, in relation unto 
evil, either sins of commission, or omission of duties. 

[1.] Conscience in natural men causeth a reluctancy and a commotion of 
affections against a sin, before the commission of it, and a displacency in 
committing of it. Thus Darius, a heathen, Dan. vi. 14, was so displeased 
with himself, when he was put upon putting to death so just a man as his 
conscience told him that Daniel was. We may observe it in Herod also, 
Mark vi. 26 : when John the Baptist's head was required of him, you read 
what a reluctancy he had, and sorrow against it ; 'he was exceeding sorry,' 
ver. 26, and it was his conscience that wrought that in him, for, ver. 20, it 
is said that ' he observed John, because he was a just and an holy man ; ' 
yet, for his oath's and lust's sake, he murdered him, though to have parted 
with half his kingdom would not have troubled him so much. 

[2.] Conscience excites in men an endeavour to avoid and decline evil. 
So Darius set his heart to deliver Daniel, and he laboured till evening, 
Dan. vi. 14 ; so Pilate did all he could, a great while, to free his hands of 
the guilt of Christ's death by saving of him. 

Chap. III.] in our salvation. 245 

[8.] It worketh much sorrow and repentance after sinning. So, of 
Darius we read, vi. 18, that he was troubled all night, could not eat his 
meat, and his sleep departed from him ; and thus the apostle, Rom. ii. 15, 
says of the heathens, that their consciences do accuse them. Thus Judas 
also, Mat. xxvii. 4, 5, says, ' I have sinned, in that I have betrayed the 
innocent blood. And ho cast down the pieces of silver in the temple, and 
departed, and went and hanged himself.' And (by the way) here are all 
the parts and ingredients that the papists require in repentance : 1. Con- 
trition : « He repented himself.' 2. Confession: ' I have sinned in betray- 
ing innocent blood.' 3. Restitution and satisfaction : ' He cast down the 
silver pieces' that had betrayed him to that sin. 4. He purposes never to 
return to it, as Saul resolved not to kill David (his conscience was overcome 
with his righteousness), and as Pharaoh resolved to let the people go. 

These things might be enlarged, and other instances given ; but I have 
given instances of such as all must needs acknowledge to have been unre- 
generate men. 


That men are apt to regard the natural light of conscience, and the influences 
of it, to be the effects of true grace. — The reasons of their mistake. 

I come now to prove all sorts of men unregenerate, have been, and are, 
apt to mistake this light of conscience in them, and the powerful effects of 
it, to be true righteousness which makes them acceptable to God. And if 
they be professors of Christianity, they are ready to take it for sanctification 
and true holiness. 

There are three things under this head to be spoken unto. 

I. That, de facto, all sorts of professions have mistaken it. 

H. The reasons of it. 

IH. Some grounds of the mistake. 

I. All sorts have been apt to this. 

1. Heathens have been so. It were infinite to reckon up the flesh- 
blown conceits of the heart of man in the instances of the heathens (as they 
may be authentically drawn out of their own writings), how they magnify 
and cry up in themselves that which they called right reason forementioned, 
as then- Diana ; what divine eulogies they give it, and how they blessed 
themselves when they lived conformably unto it, and the decrees or dog- 
mata of it, as Epictetus calls them. 

1. For the light thereof itself they judged it holy, divine, heavenly ; yea, 
and nothing more divine or heavenly, not God himself ; it being (as they 
say) a part of the divine Spirit put and drenched into a human body. 
Thus Seneca speaks,* and he speaks it not of the soul itself, but of reason 
or conscience, for he speaks of that which he terms the rule and measure 
of virtues ; yea, and because it is right reason or conscience that lets in the 
light of a deity into the soul (as the word itself imports) as a judge ; there- 
fore they called it not only a good angel, or Daimon, in a man (as frequently 
they do), but Seneca terms it sacer spiritus, a sacred or holy spirit. Sacer 

* Una inducitur humanis virtutibus regula ; ratio recta simplexque : Nihil est 
divino divinius, ccelesti ccelestius. Eatio autem nihil aliud est quam in corpus 
humanum pars divini Spiritus rnersa. — Seneca, Ep. 66. 


intra nos spiritus scdet, malorum bonorumque nostrorum observator et custos. 
Hie prout a nobis tractatus est, ita nos ipse tractat. There is a sacred spirit 
that sits within us, which is the observer, and layer up, and keeper of all 
the good or evil things in us (that is, which we do or are found in us), who 
co deals with us as we deal with him. This eminently refers unto con- 
science, for that is that principle which lets God in upon us as a judge of 
our actions in our own hearts. And you see it is spoken of that in us which 
ia the observer of all good and evil in us, yea, and the la} T er of it up and 
remembrancer of it for a long time after ; and which, as we follow the light 
p.nd guidance of it, so it deals with us, accusing or excusing us, as here, in 
the text, conscience is said to do. All which are evidently properties of 
conscience (as in this text), unto which he (as from his own experience) 
attributed a deity ; as indeed himself in the very next words says, he knew 
not what god to call it, but a god it was (Quis deus incertum est, habitat dens), 
for his conscience still represented a deity unto him. 

Yea, this light and principle in them they also accounted a thing equal 
unto God, calling it not only a branch of the divine nature (Antoninus, lib. v., 
de vita sua, chap. 6).* Epictetus also thus speaks, ' As for thy reason, 
man ! thou art not less or inferior to the gods ; ' f which they spake as 
concerning the nature of it ; so in respect of its ability to guide and bring 
us unto happiness, in this respect equal to the reason or divine light that 
is in God, though indeed in him it was infallible and supreme, by which 
he governed and managed himself and his affairs. Thus Seneca expressly 
makes no other difference between right reason within a man and God,{ 
than between two mariners that have like skill to steer and govern their 
vessels ; only the one, viz., reason, hath a less ship to guide, God a larger 
ship of the same fashion and make. Yet so as that right reason in a man 
is as supreme in his compass as God in his ; both had the same rules they 
steered by, and in that sense and intention they attend the usual speech, 
that in following reason they followed God. And so indeed I may in this 
respect make a parallel, that look, as the papists having set up the pope 
as the supreme universal judge of controversies, though in pretence as 
Christ's vicar, to increase his power, yet in the apostolical interpretation 
of it, 2 Thes. ii., they set him ' even above and against Christ, and all that 
is called God,' for that which they attribute to him doth really arise to so 
much ; so these heathens, and the wisest of them, did set up right reason in 
a man, though in pretence as God's vicegerent, yet really and in effect as equal 
unto God in a man, and as man's supreme guide or judge, only dictating 
the same rule or doyftara, as Epictetus calls them, which God did. Yea, 
to make the parallel more full, they made it a universal rule and concern 
(as Euripides calls it§), that had so full a power over all their actions, as to 
constitute them good or evil. Thus they gave forth this maxim, || Ni tibi 
concessit ratio, digitum exere, peccas, unless right reason gives commission, 
even to the putting forth a finger, it is a sinful action. They speak (you 
see) higher things hereof by far than the Scripture doth of the new creature, 
which yet is termed a participation of the divine nature. 

* acroffTccff/ia savroZ ovrog de Icnv skccgtov voug xa/ Xoyog. — Anto. lib. 5. de vita- 
sua, cap. 6. 

■j- xard t) rh Xhyov ovds yiio&v tSjv &suv ovde (ii'/.gorepog Epict. 

% Quam inter duos quibus par scientia regendi gubernaculum est : meliorem 
dixeris, cui majus speciosiusque navigium. 

£ xdvuvov rou xdXXov — Euripides in Ilccub. 

|j Persius, Satyr. 5 

Chap. III.] in our salvation. 247 

Secondly, And 2. For the fruit and effect of this principle npon their 
hearts and in their lives, they judge themselves therein according to that 
measure and esteem which, we have heard, they had of the principles of 
self. A good life they termed a harmonious, suitable living to the height 
and dictates of this light, as that wherein the happiness of a man lay. 
Now all that the apostles attribute to a true saint, or a holy man (in this 
respect), they attribute also to themselves in termini*. 

1. They term it the image and likeness to God, oftotwan tw 0s&, so Plato, 
yea, and he puts it into the same division ; and in the same words the 
apostles express the parts thereof. Plato's words are these :* A likeness 
unto God consists in what is holy, and what is just or righteous, with wis- 
dom and knowledge. The apostle's words are these : ' The image of God, 
which is in knowledge created after God in righteousness and true holiness,' 
Eph. iv. 24, compared with Col. iii. 10. Only, for distinction, the Holy 
Ghost adds true holiness, for theirs was not so. 

2. Doth the Scripture call such a man a good man, a blessed man? 
These are the ordinary titles w r hich they also usurp, and that with dis- 
tinction from others, 6 dyadug 6 hduipuv, the good, the blessed man, and the 

Yea, 3. Doth James call a man grown up in Christianity a perfect man ? 
And Paul use the same : ' I speak to those that are perfect ' ? So do they.f 
And as the apostles said that all graces go together, so they affirm of all 
virtues, and that else a man is not perfect. Yea, they go higher than the 
apostles did, for they assert that good men are impeccable, and cannot fall 
or transgress, and that a wicked man was one that had no virtue in him ; 
and they distinguish also of proficients and of perfect men. Do the apostles 
say that a godly man hath dominion* and fellowship with God (' Truly our 
fellowship is with the Father and the Son.' And Abraham was called the 
friend of God). They will needs say the same of their blessed man, Unto 
whose estate (says Seneca §) when thou hast attained, thou beginnest to be 
a companion with God himself. Another describes his wise man to be one 
who doth, in mortali corpore agitare societatem Jovis, in a mortal body pur- 
sue fellowship with God. Yea, and herein they are bold to vie with God 
himself. Cum Diis, says Seneca, ex pari vivit: He lives as blessed a life as 
God, and differs from him (say they) but in duration, passions, and mor- 
tality ; but I will not trouble you farther with their notions. I shall only 
add unto all these one scripture instance of a heathen, who though in these 
first times of the world we find more modest, yet standing upon his in- 
tegrity and righteousness before God himself, he says, Gen. xx. 4, 5. 
' Wilt thou also slay a righteous nation ? Said he not unto me, She was 
my sister ? and she, even herself said, He is my brother : in the integrity 
of my heart and innocency of my hands have I done this.' This man was 
a heathen, as also his people whom he was king over. The speech of 
Abraham, ver. 11, declares it upon the general observation of their manners. 
'What didst thou see in us?' says Abimelech. I said, says Abraham, 
1 Surely the fear of God is not in this place ; ' that is, God is not worshipped 
by or amongst this people, or there is no religion amongst them. Parallel 

* 6/xo/W/f 0sw br/.aibv xal bsiov /astu <poov?}6ZMg yiv'ss^ai. — Plato in Philebo. 

\ rov dyaObv dvo^d rsXzlov z'ivdt Xlyousi. Nee virum perfectum qui non omnes 
virtutes habct, nee actionem quae non fiat secundum omnes. — Chrysippus. ava/zasr^ - 
rovg mug ffopouj, rw drriPi-TrruiT oug iivcci a/tccpTTjfiart. — Laertius in Zenon. 

X Qu. ' communion ' ? — Ed. 

\ Incipis esse Deorum socius. — Sen., Ep. 35. Epictetus, Seneca, Chrysippus. 


to which is that speech of David's, Ps. xxxvi. 1, ' The transgression of the 
wicked says within my heart, there is no fear of God hefore his eyes.' It 
is so apparent and speaks so loud; yet this Ahiinelech, in the case of Sarah, 
having dealt there according to his knowledge, and the principles of his 
conscience commonly received amongst them; in that nation, says that 
for conscience' sake he would not have taken her, if he had known her 
to have been Abraham's wife : ' In the integrity,' says he, ' of my heart, 
and innocency of my hands, have I done this,' vcr. 5. And this he speaks 
not to Abraham (and so as what he could pretend to before men), but to 
God, of whom he had some knowledge, though a heathen, and whom he 
doth acknowledge to be judge over nations, and to judge righteous judg- 
ment. In the words afore, ver. 4, he makes his appeal to God, the only 
judge of his conscience, professing not only in innocency of hands as to 
matter of outward fact, but of integrity of heart, as having been sincerely 
conformable therein to his conscience. And he speaks herein the very 
language of a holy man, even of David, whom you hear, Ps. xviii. 24, thus 
pleading with God, ' According to my righteousness, according to the 
cleanness of my hands in his eyesight.' Now, what he says of one action, 
that in all other (if conformable to his conscience) he would make the same 

2. That the Jews did so mistake the natural light of conscience, and the 
powerful effects thereof to be true righteousness, the Old and the New 
Testament are so abundant in known instances as I need not mention any. 
They ' rested in the law, and made their boast of God,' says the apostle, 
Eom. ii. And the resting in the law was, by those that were the best of 
them, by reason of their conformity unto it (' These have I kept from my 
youth,' said that young man in Mat. xix.), for which, as they thought them- 
selves righteous (as Christ speaks) so they judged it ordained unto life and 
justification, as Paul says, Ptom. vii. And thus they ' went about to estab- 
lish their own righteousness,' Rom. x. 4. And what is all this, but to take 
the effects of conscience for true holiness, yea, for justification ? So (as 
was said) this as the principle was the suscipient of the law, and the cause 
of all that obedience in them. 

3. Christians also are obnoxious to the same mistake. "What Pelagius 
did boldly and plainly in his doctrine utter, that in application do the most 
of Christian professors secretly rest upon for their own salvation, even what 
goodness is found to be in nature. We have all Jibra Pelagiana in us, we are 
naturally all Pelagians, and the great deceit of men's hearts is, that what 
opinions they doctrinally condemn in their speculative judgments, those 
they practically approve in their secret transactions with God for their 
salvation. We generally declaim against Pelagianism, as extolling nature 
for grace, and yet as generally we take the fruits and effects of it in our- 
selves for grace. And I may say, as the apostle doth, ' Blessed is the man 
that blesseth not himself in what he condemns.' 

Now Pelagius in his doctrine professed conscience, and the light thereof, 
to be grace and holiness. He hath a manifest saying * to this purpose : 
' There is in our minds a certain natural holiness, which residing in the 
supreme part and tower of the mind, doth give forth and exerciseth the 
judgment of what is good and evil, which encourageth to and cherisheth 
honest acts in us, and condemns what are evil and wicked.' Now what is 
this but that which we call conscience ? And to this purpose he would 

* Est in animis nostris naturalis quredam sanctitas, qua3 velut in arce anitui residens, 
exercet uiali bonique judicium, hones tis actibus fovet, et sinistra opera condemnat. 

Chap. III.] in our salvation. 249 

draw the very words (of Horn. ii. 14, 15) to be intended of Abel, Noah, 
and all just ones before the Hood, and before the law was given, that by 
nature they did what was acceptable to God. Et just as Mas unayiiics, says 
he, quis nisi injiisins prohibit n regno Dei .' 

II. Secondly, The reasons of this aptness to mistake are these : 

1. In general ; It is conscience itself that is the judge ; yea, in a man's 
own heart, the highest and most supreme, and then; is no higher principle 
to control it. Yea, and no more of the word prevails with a man than this 
takes in, and the proper ofhee of it is to judge what makes a man accept- 
able to God, and what not. And next unto God (who is greater than our 
hearts) all appeals are made to this court ; and therefore no man doth 
imagine but that conscience doth direct him right ; and that if the dictates 
thereof were followed and obeyed, he should be a just and an upright man. 
Conscience being the supreme judge, hath this opinion of its own judgment, 
that if it were followed it would save a man ; and the rest of the faculties 
have that good opinion of it also, for else it would never be acknowledged 
as supreme. And there is no man that doth or will think himself so far 
off from grace as not to think he hath right opinions about it. If, there- 
fore, conscience finds its judgment hath any sway or stroke in a man to 
overpower the heart, or the actions, it presently applauds both this its own 
power for grace, and also thinks well of the man, so far as he is conform- 
able to its dictates ; and applauds him with a ' Well done, good and faith- 
ful servant !' And this, because it doth think well of itself, even as we are 
apt to think the better of ourselves, when we see ourselves respected, and 
entertain good opinions of those who do respect us. 

2. Secondly, The main reason is, because all men are under the cove- 
nant of works, or the covenant of grace (Rom. vi. 14, ' Ye are not under 
the law, but under grace.' Compare it with Rom. vii. 1) ; and the one 
hath ever set up its righteousness against the other ; and now that man is 
fallen, yet corrupt nature is so conceited of itself, that it attempts to vie 
and outvie that righteousness that is of the spring of grace in us. The 
genius in that covenant is to trust in itself for righteousness. It is sh'ange 
to see how contrary to the way of salvation by Christ, the way of nature is. 
Christ's way is to cause all men to distrust themselves, and be nothing in 
themselves, that ' he that glories might glory in the Lord.' But the great- 
est maxim of nature, among those of the heathen, that professed to live 
most righteously, was expressly, Sibijidere, to trust in a man's self, and to 
what in and by nature he was able to do. And Paul hath insinuated the 
reason of it also in those words, Rom. x., ' They went about to establish 
then: own righteousness ;' and they did so because it was their own. 

III. Thirdly, The particular grounds of the mistake are, 
1. Men find conscience to be an inward principle, as grace is, inherent, 
seated and rooted in themselves, as they hear grace is ; and therefore if 
it hath any power in a man, they easily take it for grace. Men would 
think otherwise, indeed, if that which carried them on against evil, and 
unto good, were only and merely outward, as Socrates his genius, &c. ; or 
if outward weights and enforcements of worldly respects hung on, only 
moved the wheels ; if only vainglory, or fear of superiors, or conformity 
to others, acted them. But men find something here within them, over 
and besides all these, which is real and serious for good, and against evil, 
and that such a spring should move, and have any stroke in them, as a 
part of themselves, this they easily think to be grace. Now such a prin- 
ciple is conscience, and the light of it in men ; for the effect of the law is 


written in the heart, as the text says, and they are a law to themselves. 
It is not other respects only that moved them, but a law in themselves, 
and to themselves. Yea, and oftentimes, when a stream of outward respects 
would carry them against what is good, and unto what is evil, yet this 
inward principle, conscience, moves them contrary, to swim against that 
stream ; as in Socrates, and Brutus, and Fabricius, whom no threats or 
entreats could divert ; of whom it was said, that sooner might the sun be 
turned out of its course than Fabricius be swayed by respects. And we 
have an instance too in Balaam, whom ' an house full of gold and silver' 
(though himself was covetous) could not persuade, God having a hold upon 
his conscience within. 

2. Again, 2dly, That which helps forward this good opinion is, that men 
find it a constant and incorrupt principle, and (as the schoolmen say) that 
it keeps itself a virgin. It dwells in them, as grace is said to be 'a seed 
that remains.' And it is incorrupt in this respect, that it will not let sin 
pass uncontrolled, nor be charmed to hold its tongue, but will talk and 
speak against it, whilst it hath a tongue, which, though it be imprisoned, 
will preach in prison. In keeping itself thus incorrupt, men are apt to 
think it is grace in them. 

3. The fruits and effects are so like to those of true grace, that no won- 
der if men mistake them. The phrase used to express both are so nigh 
akin, as a man must criticise to observe the difference. Grace is ' the law 
written in the heart,' the light of conscience is the ' effect of the law written 
there.' The same outward duties which grace directs to, conscience 
enlightened doth urge unto, and speaks against the same sins. And at 
once to give you a clear demonstration, both that the effects are much 
alike, and thence men are apt to mistake : How comes it to pass, that the 
7th chapter of the Romans, from the 14th verse to the end, should be so 
variously interpreted by men of great understandings, that one and the 
same draught and representation, which Paul there makes of that great 
fight between grace and corruption, the law of the members and the law of 
the mind should be drawn by Arminius and others as a representation of 
the effects and conflicts of natural conscience enlightened, and that he 
should carry on every phrase and particle therein, in all the particulars, 
with so much seeming appearance ? This argues the effects to be alike. 
Yea, which is yet stranger, Augustine himself (who knew the difference 
of the effects of grace and natural conscience ; yea, and in his Confessions, 
relates the experiments of that difference in himself to have been the first 
evidence of regeneration, or of that new work of grace upon him, in com- 
paring the then frame of his heart, when new converted, with his former, 
in his unregenerate condition). After this work he interpreted that chapter 
of the effects of the natural conscience, though after he retracts it. We 
also hear carnal people, that apparently have no grace, yet allege out of 
that chapter, excuses for their grossest sinnings, that ' they do what they 
would not ;' and ' it is not I, but sin.' That thus one and the same pic- 
ture should seem two several pictures of two several men, argues there is 
a near resemblance. That the complexion and lineaments of natural con- 
science should seem to one to be pourtrayed in this chapter, and yet the 
resemblance of grace appears in it, to another that hath experience of what 
is grace, argues a great likeness, as indeed there is. But I will discourse 
of this more particularly. 

1. The grounds why heathens were deceived in their high esteem of 
conscience, were these. They thought reason, and conscience in them, to 

Chap. III. J in our salvation. 251 

be the same that is in God himself. Orta rut rimid cum mrnte dirina ; el 
princepa lex est ratio recta summi Juris, says Tully.* And Hicroclesf also 
says, that it is the same thing to obey right reason, and God ; such a mind 
enlightened differs not from the mind of God, but being intent on that 
divinity and brightness by which it is enlightened, it comes to do those 
things which it doth. And the heathens, knowing no higher illumination, 
and therefore thinking that it was thus adequate and correspondent unto 
the light that is in God, whom whilst they glimmcringly knew, they judged 
altogether such a one as themselves, and glorified him not as God in their 
knowledge of him ; they therefore knowing no higher, judged nothing could 
be higher. And so look, what pleased reason in them, they judged it must 
fully please God also, of whom it was the participation. And although 
they could not but acknowledge God as the supreme judge (for conscience 
still urged them with his authority), yet they did in their doctrines do what 
they could to persuade themselves and others that this right reason, or law 
in their consciences, was the supreme visible judge, to which a man himself 
only was to give an account, and receive his happiness or woe from it, 
according as he lived after its dictates. 

2. The Jews receiving the law immediately from God himself, as a per- 
fect copy of his mind, saw not the end of it, 2 Cor. hi., and considered not 
that the end and intent of God's giving it, was to discover to them now 
fallen, their weakness and contrariety to it, to drive them to Christ ; but 
they thought that God prescribed the law to them as the way to life, by 
which they might live in doing of it as they were able ; and so their con- 
sciences taking it from God, set them a- doing it in the letter of it, and this 
they judged must save them, because the primitive intent of the law to man 
at first was ordained to life. This Paul speaks as his thoughts, in the name 
of the rest, Rom. vii. 9. But that which deceived them was that man was 
not as at first, though the law, in itself, was what it was at first. 

3. We Christians, that know the gospel, yet remaining unregenerate, do 
still verge in our spirits to the way of the covenant of works, for it is 
nature in us ; and so we set up conscience, and close with the dictates of 
it for religion, rather than the way of faith and rules of believing. And 
further, hearing religion expressed to us by such phrases as these, of a 
man's being a conscionable man, and the integrity of a man's actions being 
expressed by doing things ' for conscience sake,' Rom. xiii. 5 ; and having! 
all religion also to be reduced to those two, and so expressed to us, viz., 
' faith and a good conscience,' (1 Tim. i. -19 ; faith being the principle of 
all things to be believed ; conscience, of things that are to be done. Fides 
principium credendorum et conscientia ayendorum), therefore faith to be a 
common assent to what they are trained up in, and is delivered in the word ; 
so look what effects conscience hath upon their hearts, either for good or 
against evil, they think must needs be what the New Testament means by 
' the new creature,' not dreaming that there is a ' defiled conscience,' which 
sets men a-work till faith and regeneration come with power and purify 
the heart. 

* Lib. 3, de Kepnb. lib. 6, cap. 8. See Chrysippus apud Laertium. 
t Hierocles Comment, in Carmin Pijthagor. 
X Qu. ' bearing ' ? — Ed. 



A discovery of the defects wherein natural conscience fcdls short of true grace. 

The third and main head is to make discovery of this deficiency, as also 
of the grounds of those mistakes fore- specified. 

1. I shall make inquisition or search into the principle of conscience 
itself, and into the light with which the consciences of natural men are 
endowed. And I shall inquire also into the nature, seat, condition, and 
goodness of that light ; and this in many assertions introductory unto what 
shall follow. For, to be sure, the goodness of the effects of conscience 
cannot rise higher than that of the cause. 

2. I shall consider the grounds of those several mistakes forementioned, 
by which men unregenerate are induced to think the light of natural con- 
science to be holiness. 

3. I shall particularly examine all those effects of natural conscience 
which have been enumerated, and the deficiency of them from that holiness 
which is in a man regenerate. 

1. As to the inquiry concerning the principle of conscience itself. Sup- 
pose that you had some person that were counterfeit, that pretended to 
some great inheritance under examination, you would strictly inquire into 
his birth, original, place of abode, and residence, and the like. Let us 
take the same course here. 

(1.) For its original, I acknowledge that the light thereof is from God, 
upon a new account ; but this will make nothing for the justification of the 
grand mistake, that therefore it is holiness. There are those who would 
have those sparks of moral light in conscience, as also of moral virtues and 
inclinations in the will and affections, found in corrupt nature, to be relics 
of the former image of God ; so that, by the stumps of stubble remaining 
on the ground, you might know what corn once grew upon that soil, viz., 
the heart of man, now laid waste and desolate. And indeed if the case was 
thus, this controversy were at an end, for then these remaining sparks of 
conscience must be of the same kind with that primitive holiness, as being 
the stumps thereof, and so every man by nature would be in part regenerate, 
which is the highest perfection here. But that which I would assert is, 
that take these seeds of light, &c, abstracted from the natural faculties, 
and they are new plants rather in the heart of man, though of another kind 
(as herbs that are wild in wildernesses are from those in gardens), which 
God through Christ's general mediation for all mankind hath planted there, 
de novo, out of pity to the totally ruined condition of man's nature ; out of 
which by the curse, all stems were utterly rooted out and stubbed up ; the 
nature of man being left in the rigour and utmost extent of the curse, no- 
thing but flesh, or as an abrasa tabula, devoid of all good (Rom. vii. 18), 
insomuch as it would not have had the shadow or appearance of what is 
good ; as Christ's curse upon the temple was, that not so much as a stone 
should be left upon a stone. Insomuch as in the execution of that curse, 
after that the Romans in Titus's time had razed and thrown down the upper 
parts and walls thereof, even unto the ground, God in Julian's time gave 
the earth a vomit by an earthquake, and it cast up the very foundations, 
that not a stone was left upon a stone. So it befell man's nature upon 
the fall, in respect of all moral good. 'And so though these sparks of light 
and Koniai hvolai, common notions of God and goodness, are indeed the 

Chap. IV.J in our salvation. 253 

imperfect shadow of that former image created in true holiness (as by dis- 
tinction from these Paul tcrmeth that original primitive purity), yet they 
are no way the relics or remainders of it, but indeed are new donatives, 
over and above that birthright of nothing but sin, and natural faculties, 
the necessary subject thereof, which Adam, and the curse for his sin, left 
unto us. 

For, 1, Christ himself hath designed and set out the pittance of that 
birthright portion to be this, ' That which is born of the flesh is flesh,' 
John iii. That is, there is not that thing which is born or derived to us 
by that birth, and the dues of it, but flesh ; and of that flesh Paul says, 
again and again, that it is ' enmity to God,' Rorn. viii. ; and that ' no good 
thing dwells in it,' Rom. vii. 

Neither, 2, had the curse for Adam's sin any eye to pity, or commission 
to spare some good, whilst it stretched out its sword to cut off all. It alike 
struck at root as well as branch, and its devouring jaws left no broken frag- 
ments. The threatening was, that ' that day thou sinnest thou diest.' What- 
ever good then is found, is from the mitigation of this curse on another 
account, viz., of riches of mercy, though but common mercy, such as the 
fourth verse of this Rom. ii. speaks of. 

And truly, 3, the great inequality of the distribution of these moral 
lights, or goodness, which is found either in conscience or any other faculty, 
doth evidence this. Socrates had more thereof than Epicurus ; whereas 
the curse of itself would work in all a like deprivation of moral light. And 
this to me is unanswerable, that so far as any one man's conscience doth 
by nature prove more dim in light than others, even to the lowest degree of 
glimmerings, such as is found in the merest natural fool that ever was yet 
in the world, unto that degree at least (as it must be acknowledged) would 
the curse of itself work in all men to leave them to the same proportion. 
For even that small proportion (in comparison of what others have) is from 
the same curse ; which of itself in justice was to overflow to all, and as a 
sweeping rain would carry all away. And truly whilst we give the name 
of ' mere naturals', unto them who have the lowest degree of light, and are 
but a nice distinction between an elevated brute and a rational creature, 
we do thereby tacitly acknowledge that this least pittance is the whole 
dowry which mere nature, as accursed and corrupt, would have left to any 
man : so as utter darkness, blindness in things, is nature's legacy. ' Man 
is born' (says Elihu* in Job), ' as a wild ass-colt,' Job xi. 12. And thus, 
though conscience be a natural faculty, and there is the altar, yet the fire 
and the light of it, and what is morally good, even to every spark thereof, 
is not raked up in the ashes of our nature, as remainders of that holy light 
which was there before ; but as sparks struck into conscience, as the tinder 
fully capable and recipient of them. In Rom. ii., you have one phrase 
makes for this, and another that makes against it ; let us examine the force 
of either. Paul says it is the ' effect of the law written in their hearts.' 
Writing is opus artificis, and notes out characters imprinted by an exterior 
hand. Our consciences are the paper, that is all we bring, which the very 
renewal or revival by the law typified. God at first formed both by one 
immediate hand, in the state of innocency ; but after man bad broken these 
tables, man finds the stone, but God the letters, and writing still. But 
then how is it said, verse 14, that ' by nature they do the things of the 
law' ? This on the other hand, seems to make against it. But the answer 
is easy ; nature is opposed to God's outward revelation of the law, as the 

* Zophar. — Ed. 


context shews. The Gentiles that have not the law, that is, the outward 
knowledge of it by revelation, have yet a light derived with their births and 
nature (for the sparks of this must be acknowledged to be therewith derived), 
according to the purport of that expression, • He enlighteneth every 
man that is born into the world ;' and so it accompanies our birth, and 
more or less is made a dowry common to the nature of man, and made 
innate in man ; yet it is still written there by an external hand. And all 
those other scriptures convince me of this, in that when speaking of this 
truth (whereof conscience is the seat) concerning God and righteousness, 
which, Rom. i. 18, he says, was ' withhold in unrighteousness' by the 
Gentiles ; and which, verse 19, he calls ' that which may be known of God' 
which was ' manifest in them ;' he is wary in a special manner to speak 
something of the sense or original of it, and how they being naturally 
(as we all are) so corrupt, came by it ; ' For God' (says he) ' hath 
shewed it to them ;' he by his secret instruction teaching them to spell 
those characters of his eternal power and godhead written in the creation, 
verse 20, which without his teaching, and shewing them, as one doth a 
child, they would never have understood. This they owed to God, and 
therefore this reflecting power in man ' that searcheth the inward chambers 
of the belly,' Prov. xx. 27, is called ' the candle of the Lord.' He speaks 
evidently of conscience, which is that light and faculty which pierceth by 
reflections upon all faculties, witnessing, accusing, excusing, discerning just 
or unjust, that is never so secretly done in any room of the soul. And why 
is it called the candle of the Lord ? But because we are all in the dark, 
and should have so remained, if God had not brought in and set up tie novo 
that candle within us, or at least lighted it and snuffed it. And as a candle 
is extrinsecal to the room, at least the light is extrinsecal, in respect of its 
original, to the candle, so here it is in this case. And this assertion, that 
there is light from God himself as the enlightener (especially in things moral, 
and which concern himself), even in man fallen, is no new opinion, even 
among both Jewish, heathenish, or Christian writers.* And by them it is 
judged to be that to the conscience or mind (which is the natural faculty 
itself), which an external sun or candle is to the eye of the body. There have 
been large collections out of all these, and references to them for the de- 
monstration of it, made unto your hands. Now this light, though extrinse- 
cally from God, comes to be defiled, and to have a tincture from the defile- 
ment of the mind, as the light of the sun shining on, or through a glass 
dyed green or red, useth to receive a tincture suitable, for quicquid recipitur 
ad modum recipientis. To which that of the apostle accords, ' To unbelievers 
all things are impure, because their minds and consciences are denied, 
Titus i. 15. 

I added, in the beginning of this assertion, that the light was vouchsafed 
thus to all, more or less, through the mediation of Christ. By which I 
understand such a mediation as he hath made for the upholding the whole 
creation, which the curse would else have pulled about Adam's ears. And 
truly that scripture seems to look that way ; John i. 9, ' He is that light, 
which enlighteneth every man that comes into the world.' The analysis of 
that chapter might give light to this, if I could insist on it. The apostle 
shews, 1. What before the fall Christ was to all creatures, ver. 3. 2. What 
he was to man in innocency, verses 2, 4. 3. What he is to man fallen 
and become darkness : verse 5, ' And the light shineth in darkness, and the 

* See the schoolmen on that question, in their tracts de Gratia. Also Seldenus de 
Jure Naturali, lib. i. cap. 9. 

Chap. IV.] in our salvation. 255 

darkness comprehend* th it not ;' which in this 9th verso he again en- 
larged on. He is in himself that true light, from whom all men born into 
the world have that light, which accompanies their nature. He shews what 
Christ was to the Jews in revealing the law and gospel, verse 11. And 5, 
What he is to believers whom he regenerates, verses 12, 13. And it is 
evident that part of John's scope is withal to distinguish this common 
light vouchsafed to every man in the world, verses 5, 9, 10, from that of 
faith and regeneration, of which he speaks, verses 12, 13. That common 
light turneth not the natural darkness or corruption of the heart into holi- 
ness ; ' the darkness comprehends it not.' It change th not the heart into 
the same image ; even as the light of stars is such a light as serves to dis- 
cover themselves, but they alter not the air into light, as the sun doth. And 
he speaks of that light specially shining into men's dark and corrupt hearts 
as gives the knowledge of good or evil, and of God, because it is such a light 
as the darkness of man's nature would avoid, and is some way contrary unto 
it, for it avoids it, receives it not, so as to have its full effect on their hearts, 
it discovering that darkness that is found in the chambers of the belly. 
Now natural knowledge, in other things, man's darkness is not opposite 
unto. The drift then of what we have hitherto said hereof is, that this 
light of conscience is not the remainder of the former image, and so no part 
or spark of the former holiness, but a light de novo, brought in by God and 
Christ, as, in common, a mediator for all mankind. 

There is, or may be supposed, a difference in the kinds or sorts of light, 
and so there is a difference of this from what is holy and spiritual ; although 
all be derived from God, as the Father of lights, as James in the plural calls 
them, when he insinuates a distinction of gifts perfect and imperfect, yet it 
follows not that it should be holy, no more than other notions, in the 
knowledge of things merely natural and philosophical truths are. It falls 
out in the lights of the mind, whereof God is the Father, as it doth in bodily 
visible lights, which Paul speaks of upon occasion of the resurrection, and 
in setting forth the difference of the qualities now and after the resurrection : 
1 Cor. xv. 39, ' All flesh is not the same flesh, but there is one kind of flesh 
of men, another flesh of beasts, another of fishes, and another of birds.' 
And ver. 14, ' There is one glory of the sun, another of the moon, and 
another of the stars.' Now by their glory he means their differing light 
that is in them and from them. So say I of these lights vouchsafed by 
God ; although they be from God, yet they differ both in their kind and 
efficacy, and also according to the tincture of the subjects they are shed 
into. The light of the natural conscience is one kind of light, which is as that 
of the stars ; the light given the Jew from the law, and the light of men 
that fall away (spoken of Heb. vi.), are as that of the moon ; and the 
light vouchsafed the saints in regeneration is as the sun. Our Saviour 
Christ therefore, in John, gives this note of distinction of it from all lights 
else (though all be from God)., in calling it ' the light of life.' John viii. 12, 
' He that folio we th me ' (saitb he) ' shall not walk in darkness, but shall 
have the light of life,' viz., that which converts, saves, and only giveth life. 
Which Elihu in Job speaking of (Job xxxiii. 30) names it a being en- 
lightened with the light of the living, which brings back a man's soul from 
the pit. Which distinction the apostle John, that wrote the Gospel, confirms 
(1 John ii. 4, 9, 11), when he says, ver. 4, 'He that says I know him, 
and keeps not his commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him ;' 
and, ver. 9, ' is in darkness even until now,' that is, in his dark condition, 
devoid of light, and (ver. 11) ' walks in darkness.' Now consider that the 


apostle (Rom. i. 18) calls that natural light the heathen had ' the truth,' 
and (ver. 19) says it was h mvroig, manifest in them. And these pro- 
fessors of Christianity which John speaks of were certainly enlightened with 
that light (Heb. vi.) which drew them in their profession to say that they 
knew God, without which in those times men had no encouragement, but 
all discouragements to profess him. How then doth he say that the truth 
is not in them, and that in saying they knew God they lied ? This could 
net have been unless there had been a knowledge, which is comparatively 
the only true genuine knowledge and light of God indeed, and in comparison 
of which the other are but as darkness. As the light of the sun is such a 
light, and so different from all other, that it alone bears the title of the true 
light, which only makes day, and in comparison of which all other is but 
darkness and night, though cue night may be more light than another, as 
we see when the moon shines in its brightness, and some star-light nights 
are clearer than others ; yet still a man that knows the difference may say, 
These all are not the true light, not the light which makes day, for they 
overcome not the darkness when they shine, as the least beam of the sun 
doth. Now regenerate men are called day, as set in the daylight. And 
the state of unregeneracy is termed night and darkness. Now as suppose 
a man that had been kept in a close darkness all his da} T s, and from seeing 
any light, yet had heard some talk in general of the light of the day, and 
the shining of light that makes clay ; and bring this man into a room where 
a great and stately lamp or taper burns, ' Oh, this is the light I have heard 
so much of,' would he presently say ; and lo, this is day, and oh, how pleasant 
a thing would he affirm it to behold this light, in comparison to that dark- 
ness he had been condemned to. So if we could suppose any one of the 
sons of men brought up in those merm tenebra, mere darkness which were 
only nature's legacy, and on the sudden God should set up in the lantern 
of his brains the light of the greatest magnitude that Plato or Socrates 
ever had, how would this man bless himself (as much as we heard they 
did), magnify this as the only light, and the same which God himself hath, 
as they also did. Well, yet for illustration's sake, let us make a farther 
supposition, and that is, that this man were told, Oh, but there is a further 
and higher light yet, that gives light to all the world : there is the sun, 
which is placed in the heavens, and not on a candlestick, to give light only 
to one house or one room. And then let this man be carried forth into 
the open sky, and let any one shew him a full moon, walking in her greatest 
brightness, as Job speaks, Oh, how would he kiss his hand to it, and passion- 
ately cry out, Oh, this is light, this is day indeed ; and what a miserable 
creature was I (would that poor man say within himself) that have hitherto 
lived in such darkness, and wanted this blessed light of the world ! Well, 
let this man a while enjoy his fancy, and keep him still in the open air 
awake, and anon when the day is approaching let him discover the twinkling 
stars to close up their lights and vanish, and the brightness to wash off by 
degrees from his so adored moon, which he verily took for the sun, and her 
face to grow pale and wan ; and a far differing, stronger light to steal in by 
degrees, and he looks about him, and discerns not from what cause it 
springs, nor can at first imagine, till at last casting his eye to that quarter 
of heaven which is brightest, he discerns the body of the sun beginning to 
peep up above the horizon — do but think with yourselves, upon the sight 
hereof, what this man would say. This is day indeed, this is light indeed, 
the only true light I have heard spoken of, and differs (though the other had 
the name and reality of light) as much from the former as any sorts of 

Chap. IV.] in our salvation. 2;17 

creatures that are the counterfeits of others that are genuine can be supposed 
to do. This man would acknowledge what John aflixeth to natural men, 
enlightened not savingly, that he had been but in darkness, and walked 
in the night all this while until now ; and that his boasts and brags that 
he knew day and had commerce with the sun were mistakes, and that the 
truth of lifo had neither been in him, nor in them which hitherto he had 

Let your own judgments and consciences make the application. For like 
mistakes there are about the light of life, and of eternal salvation. Neither 
is the difference of these several lights, but only in and by the effects, 
demonstrable to any man, but him that hath seen the true light of the sun 
shining on him. Other men will walk and abide in night and darkness, 
and yet will say they have the true light, and their error can never be dis- 
covered to them but by the arising of the true light. Only the saints can 
say (as John in their names there) with difference from all others, ' We 
know we know him,' 1 John ii. 3 ; and ' the darkness is past, and the true 
light now shineth,' ver. 8, and there can be no other. 

The present drift of this discourse hath been to shew, that a difference 
is and may be supposed between the light that God vouchsafes regenerate 
and unregenerate men in kind as well as in degree. For if there be one 
glory of a torch or taper, which is a light on earth, another of the stars and 
moon, which is a light in and from heaven, and yet another of the sun, 
which alone deserves the name of being a true light, which difference God 
the Father of all lights hath set amongst them ; why should we not think 
tbat the same God can diversify and vary the lights that he causeth to fall 
and shine into men's hearts, and make them of a several kind ? Common 
light in heathens is but as a candle on earth ; light in Jews and Christians 
but as the light of the moon ; and though heavenly, yet not dispelling 
night. Although all these be light, and represent in many things the very 
same objects (though somewhat more imperfectly), as all these forementioned 
lights do, yet still the light of regeneration describes* only the name of the 
true light, the light of life, and the other in comparison are darkness, 
according to that of Solomon : Prov. ix. 10, ' The knowledge of the Holy 
is understanding,' and that only. 

The third consideration is touching the seat of the power and dominion 
of the natural light of conscience. 

1. The light of conscience hath a power over the rest of the faculties. 
2. The seat of that power and dominion over the rest of the faculties is not 
the whole heart, but conscience, which is but one faculty. That a power 
and dominion it hath over a man's heart, the forementioned effects do 
shew ; and Paul's discourse manifests it in his Epistle to the Piomans, the 
6th and 7th chapters. In the 6th chapter the apostle, treating of that sanc- 
tification which is in a man truly regenerate, in the 14th verse expresseth 
his state thus, ' Ye are not under the law, but under grace ; ' wherein his 
state is both negatively and affirmatively set forth. 

(1.) Negatively, it is being not under the law, which is on purpose in- 
serted in opposition to the contrary state of men unregenerate, who are 
under the law ; and the law hath a dominion over such. 

(2.) Affirmatively, it is set forth in those words, so as grace comes to 
have a dominion over a man's spirit when sanctified; and under these two 
conditions are all men cast. 

Then in the 7th chapter, from the first verse, he sets out this dominion 
* Qu. ' deserves' ? — Ed. 



that the law hath over an unrcgcncrate man in more express terms : ' the 
law hath dominion over a man as long as he lives.' Where these words, 
' as long as he lives,' respect not simply the term of a man's life in this 
world, hut limitedly the time of his continuance in that estate wherein he 
was at first horn into the world. For life there relates to the death men- 
tioned ver. 4 and G : ' Ye are hecome dead to the law,' speaking of their 
regenerate condition, ' that heing dead wherein ye were held.' Christ's 
body, which was crucified for us, in virtue of it works a dying to a man's 
former estate, by humiliation and mortification, whereof also he speaks, 
Gal. ii. 19, ' I through the law am dead to the law, that I might live unto 
God.' He speaks particularly with respect to the law, as a husband, that 
had power over a man before, as is evident from ver. 1, 2, ' You know, 
brethren, how the law hath dominion over a man as long as he lives. For 
the woman which hath an husband is bound by the law to her husband so 
long as he liveth ; but if the husband be dead, she is loosed from the law 
of her husband.' And suitably, in following this allegory, he exprcsseth 
the change of their condition in those that are wrought upon : ver. 4, 
• Wherefore, brethren, ye are become dead to the law by the body of 
Christ ; that ye should be married to another, even to him who is raised 
from the dead.' So then it is clear from this, that as Christ and grace 
have a dominion over a man after regeneration, the law hath dominion 
over every man before conversion. And to set forth this the more, the 
apostle compares the unregenerate heart of man unto the wife, and the law 
unto the husband, who, according to the law of nature, hath dominion over 
the wife whilst both live. And that the law was once the natural husband 
of man's heart, and God by it, you may observe out of Jer. xxxi. 32. God 
there speaking of the old covenant, and expressing the tenor of that cove- 
nant of works, which was the same with that of man's creation, says, ' I 
was a husband to them.' And now that man is fallen, God still urgeth his 
right, and the obligation which is upon a man whilst under the mere cove- 
nant of his creation ; and the terms of his condition, by his fall, are no way 
altered. Now, further, it is the law, whether written by nature or given 
by revelation, which calls for this subjection to God, which it doth though 
men be departed and gone a- whoring from him ; and urgeth all sorts of 
duties conjugal upon the heart ; and the heart cannot deny but that it is 
her duty to be subject, for she is conscious of her primitive allegiance, 
which in that state of nature she can never shako off, but is an adulteress 
in every act of disobedience or rebellion. 

2. The scat or proper throne of this dominion which the law hath, and 
from whence the exercise of it comes, is the conscience of a man. The 
case stands thus : the husband and wife are not wholly parted, although 
they live at odds, but the husband challengeth to live under the same roof 
with her ; and so although the heart would and hath for her part cast off 
God, yet God keeps possession in one corner of the house, by the light of 
his law, that he causeth to shine into conscience, which (as I have shewn) 
is the suscipicnt of God's law. Sin in the heart hath shut God out of all 
the rest, and keeps it to itself, and hath crowded him up into that narrow 
corner, and grudgcth him that too, and if it could possibly, would throw 
him out of all ; but God will so far keep and maintain his right and pos- 
session, as that the heart may know and acknowledge his ancient right over 
it, and its subjection to his law. Yea, and by means and virtue of its re- 
sidence there, doth the law continually provoke the heart to her duties, 
and overrules her in many things, and tells her of her adulteries and de- 


partmente* from God, &c. But all that the law speaks is contrary to tho 
full bent and inclination of her heart : ' Her desire is not to her husband,' 
for the apostle, ver. 5, tells us that this husband begets nothing but mo- 
tions of sins on her, through her perverscness. I may otherwise express 
it under the similitude and metaphor of a kingdom, which the apostle also 
uscth, Bom. v. 21 and chap. vi. 14. All mankind had dean shook oil' tho 
pweet and natural subjection of the heart to God and his law ; and sin and 
self were become absolute and supreme, and had got the power, and had 
entered upon God's rights and dominions. And though in title sin be but 
a tyrant, yet in power and jurisdiction it is (now man is fallen) owned by 
the whole man as its natural lord and prince, giving forth laws, Rom. vii. 
23 ; which laws being men's own lusts, are willingly and cheerfully obeyed, 
Rom. vi. 12. But shall sin think to carry it thus from God, to enjoy a 
settled dominion quietly, so that God shall have no remedy, no law to 
take place ? The truth is, God had beforehand made and placed over the 
soul of man one tower (for so conscience is termed b} r the ancients arx 
an/in,,), which is by the natural situation of it so unfortifiable by the 
utmost power of man, and lies so open and exposed immediately unto 
God, and beams of light from him, that let man revolt and become never 
so sinful and rebellious, 3-et he cannot keep God nor his forces out of it. 
Man can never stop that passage, but God can bring in what forces and 
what number he pleaseth, and all the power in man can never hinder it. 
The devil himself cannot keep God out thence, for ' they believe and 
tremble.' This is the practic part of the understanding, viz., conscience. 
Yea, the truth is, that but for this principle, which is natural to men and 
devils, and can never be demolished by the wickedness of either, God 
could never come to punish for sin either of them in their spirits. Yea, 
the devil would wholly have escaped, for he is not capable of bodily pun- 
ishment in outward things. It is conscience, which is a tender part; and 
which is such in man as God hath made in wild beasts to tame them by, 
as a snout in a bear and the mouth in an horse. It is conscience that is 
only, or at least primarily, sensible of God's wrath, and hell fire could not 
take hold of the soul but at this corner. And so God created it for all 
events and for all states, viz., to stop men's mouths when he indulgeth, to 
execute vengeance upon them when he punisheth in hell, and on earth to 
rule and cut short men's spirits, and restrain them from wickedness ; there 
being this difference between the state of wicked men and devils, that he 
doth not rule the devils by conscience, It is not their conscience that 
keeps them from any evil, for they certainly make conscience of nothing. 
He punisheth them indeed by conscience, and at that channel lets in all 
the streams of the lake of fire and brimstone into these vessels of wrath. 
Conscience, the moderate effects of which men magnify so much, hath its 
fullest dominion in hell, and is in its height of power there. 

But to return to the similitude. God having thus aforehand taken order 
to erect in man's soul this out-work, this castle upon an impregnable rock, 
which can powerfully command the rebellious town and malignant inhabi- 
tants that dwell below it, plants his great ordnance there (namely, the 
awful knowledge of himself, of the works of the law, and of his wrath), 
hangs out his flags of summons, sends out proclamations with sound of 
trumpet from this mount Sinai (as in giving the law he did), often thunders 
down with fears, and horrors, and dreadful punishments, in and with 
which the law of God is ' revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and 
* Qu. ' departures ' ? — Ed. 


unrighteousness of men, that withhold the truth in unrighteousness' (as o( 
the very Gentiles the apostle prefaceth, Eorn. i. 18) ; yet all this while the 
city, and the towns ahout, and adjacent parts of the heart of man, are per- 
fect malignants, stand out in rebellion, having set up a contrary king and 
kingdom, which they obey in the lusts thereof, and will obey only. From 
this fort God now and then sends out parties that bring them to some con- 
tribution, that prevail to make them take many conditions, and bring them 
to much outward conformity, even to the laws of God ; yet so as still the 
seat, the place of residence to all these foreign forces (as these are to the 
heart), is but this one faculty from whence God commands the rest, though 
they are not brought into a natural subjection. Whereas regenerating 
grace, where it comes, immediately plants itself in the whole man, takes up 
every faculty, one as well as another, for God, and ' brings every thought 
into subjection,' 2 Cor. x. 5. It wins the heart of every faculty, that had 
rebelled, unto itself and unto God, sets up a new kingdom in the midst of 
the soul, alters all the state and form of government, insomuch as the laws 
of that kingdom are made natural where grace reigns, Rom. v. 21. And 
the laws of God are become the law of a believer's mind, Rom. vii. 23, and 
if he were to choose, he would be governed by no other. But the condition 
of an unregenerate man is very different ; for, as in a state or kingdom, a 
foreign power may have much quarter and many compliances, when yet the 
laws of that kingdom are still in force ; so in an unregenerate man, though 
the law of God may, in the light of it, be said to be in his mind and prevail 
much there, yet it is not become the law of his mind, which hath still a 
contrary law and government that stands in force. The reason whereof is 
clear, for the power of it being but the power of the law, therefore it can 
never sanctify ; and though it may come to have much power, stroke, and 
command amongst the subjects of this kingdom of sin, yet it can never pull 
down* the power of sin, or put sin from its dominion. It is an apostolical 
maxim, resolutely delivered : Rom. vi. 14, • Sin shall not have dominion 
over you, for ye are not under the law.' Therefore, whilst a man is in such 
an estate as he is still under the law, sin will retain its dominion. Indeed, 
the law by conscience may much interrupt and impede sin in its proceed- 
ings, and overrule a man unto much good ; yet it must be something stronger 
than the law to alter the whole form of government and frame of the heart, 
and subdue it to God, and restore to him his kingdom again. Christ alone 
can do this. The law, as it can never justify, so nor sanctify, although 
indeed what is written in the heart in our sanctification is the matter of the 
law, as also in Christ the performance of the same law is the matter of our 
justification. Yet it is not by the power of the law that we are sanctified 
or justified. • If there had been a law given which could have given life, 
verily righteousness had been by the law,' Gal. hi. 21. But the apostle 
hath informed us, Rom. viii. 3, that the law was ' weak through the flesh,' 
and could not free a man from ' the law of sin and death,' but the spirit 
and power that is in Jesus Christ must do this ; Rom. viii. 2, 3, ' For the 
law of the spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made us free from the law of 
sin and death. For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through 
the flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for 
sin, condemned sin in the flesh.' 

The fourth consideration or assertion is touching the exercise of this power, 
which the light of conscience hath in a man. Concerning which, I assert, 

1. That the strength and force that is in all the workings of it, whether 
in motives to duty or restraint from sin, do lie in the law ; and the weapons 

Chap. IV.] in our salvation. 2G1 

of its warfare, whereby it works its chiefest effects, are all fetched out of 
that magazine. The great artillery thereof are charged both with powder 
and bullets of tho law ; as it is said, ' the strength of sin is the law,' 1 Cor. 
xv. 50, viz., in respect of holding us under the guilt of it, so tho strength 
of natural conscience is but that of tho law, as to the motive part thereof. 
And the reason is clear from tho apostle's forementioned maxim : ' Ye are 
not under the law, but graco ; therefore sin shall not have dominion,' Rom. 
vi. 14. Hence therefore, in whomsoever sin hath dominion, there the law is 
the most prevalent principle ; and so whatever hath the presence of goodness 
in them must have its rise chiefly from thence. Everything is in working 
as it is in being. Now the condition of the person is to be under the law, 
and he belongs to that dominion, and therefore the swaying principle of his 
actings must be from the power thereof. Insomuch as if an unregenerate 
man be enlightened, and duties of the gospel be urged upon him, as to 
mourn for sin, to believe in Christ, &c. ; yet the motives that prevail with 
that man are but such as are of the same kind with those of the law. As 
faith turns the commands of the law into gospel in a regenerate man's heart, 
so conscience, in an unregenerate man, turns the gospel into law. As faith 
writes the law in the heart, and urgeth the duties of it upon evangelical 
grounds and motives — as the love of Christ, conformity to him, union with 
him, and the free grace of God — so in a man unregenerate, gospel duties 
are turned into legal, through the sway and influence of conscience, and 
that dominion which the covenant of works hath over him. And if to such 
a man you use such motives as are drawn from Christ's love, God's freo 
grace, &c, they are but as wooden cannons set upon the walls for show. 
But those that do execution, make dints and impressions on the heart, are 
at best in such cases but the threatenings of the law. Conscience, at 
best, is but a legal preacher. I call it so, because though the law lays down 
the doctrines and shews what is man's duty, yet conscience is that which 
makes the application, and as occasion serves, makes uses of direction and 
exhortation to good, or of comfort if a man doth well, or of reproof if he 
doth evil. And let the doctrine be what it will, yet the motives, with which 
it backs its uses, are still legal, and so it is but a legal preacher. And 
therefore, Gal. v. 18, ' to be led by the Spirit,' and to be ' under the law,' 
or conscience (its minister), are two different things, and two distinct prin- 
ciples of men's actions, regenerate or unregenerate. 

2. My second assertion concerneth the kind or condition of this power, 
and the exercise of it, which is plainly this : It is a tyrannical and forced 
government which natural conscience exerciseth over the heart. Whereas, 
on the contrary, the government of the grace of regeneration in the soul 
is (so far as a man's heart is regenerated) sweet and intrinsecal, congenial 
and connatural to the heart, it being endowed with dispositions suitable, 
and changed into the image of that light, and so the subjection of the rest 
of the faculties is such as of subjects to their natural prince ; but, on the 
other case, it is a subjection as to a foreigner or invader. And this differ- 
ence, as to that part of it, conscience, viz., its government, is clear from 
what hath been said. For if one faculty only rules over the rest, when 
their bent remains contrary to its laws, this government must needs be 
extrinsecal ; as also, if it be but a legal government in the main and funda- 
mental constitution of it. I shewed (out of Rom. vii. 1-3) that the law in 
the conscience is compared to the husband, and the heart of man to the 
wife. Indeed, for his title over the heart, it is a natural jurisdiction, for it 
was once bv nature. But take the condition of the heart of such a man, 


now corrupt with sin, it is a cruel government. They are man and wife 
indeed ; but so contrary, that there is a vexatious life between this couple. 
He offers to do his duty, and makes motions to this and unto that, but she 
is averse, and the motions to the contrary often become the stronger thereby: 
Rom. vii. 6, ' The motions of sin which were by the law,' that is, begotten 
on the heart as children by a husband, ' did work in our members to bring 
forth fruit unto death.' Conscience in unregenerate men finds all in the 
heart armed against it ; but grace hath created an interest in the heart 
throughout, and made a party for itself, so as it fights not alone. Con- 
science in the end, as a severe governor, comes to be ' imprisoned,' Rom. 
i. 18, ' in unrighteousness ;' for men are all weary of its yoke, and rise up 
against it, and are glad when it is stopped or seared. 


What goodness, and of what kind, is to be acknowledged to be in this light from 
God, vouchsafed to natural conscience, though it doth fall short of true grace. 

That fight which is in a natural conscience being from God, who is the 
Father of all lights, it must needs have a goodness in it. For as all that 
ever God made at first was good (Gen. i. 31, ' God saw all that he had made 
was good'), so all that ever God shall make must be good : 1 Tim. iv. 4, 
' Every creature of God is good.' The very letters of the law, written on 
tables of stone, were good in this sense, much more the same, though but 
literally written on men's consciences. Let me say it : all the actings and 
stirrings of conscience of men in hell, as they are from God and the Spirit 
of bondage, they are good with this kind of goodness. 

2. It hath that further goodness which the outward letter of the law, 
considered as distinct from the spiritual part thereof, may be said to have. 

Four things are to be explained. 

I. That there is a literal part of the law, and a spiritual part. 

II. That it is the spiritual part that constitutes the law holy. 

HI. That the light of the law in an unregenerate man's conscience is but 
literal, not spiritual ; and so is but the shadow and picture of true know- 
ledge of the law, as it is spiritual. 

IV. It will be necessary to explain what goodness is in the literal part 
severed from the spirit, above wiiat is common to all other creatures. 

The three first I shall intermingledly handle together, because they are 
in a great part the subject of that 7th chapter of the Romans, where he 
treats of the light and dominion of the law in and over a man unregenerate, 
and the difference of it from that which is in a regenerate man. 

I. You may observe Paul putting this difference between the law, as 
dwelling in his heart or conscience, when an unregenerate Jew and Phari- 
see, and in himself when renewed and become a regenerate Christian : 
Rom. vii. 6, ' But now we are delivered from the law, that being dead 
wherein we were held ; that we should serve in newness of spirit, and not 
in the oldness of the letter.' He sets forth the difference of the two states, 
and termeth the one, ' serving in the oldness of the letter,' but that of 
regeneracy is ' in the newness of the spirit.' The oldness of the letter is 
not simply the law of Moses in itself, as delivered to them of old (as some 
interpret it out of Mat. v. 23), but it is that knowledge and light of the 
law, and a frame of heart accompanying it in the old man, or in a man's 
Unregenerate estate, which is called the state of old things, 2 Cor. v. 17, 

Chap. V.] in our salvation. 2G3 

which passcth away. And the newness of the spirit is the light of the same 
law, for the substance of it, and that iVarao of heart accompanying it, as it 
is in the new man, which is created in good works. 

II. Yon may observe the spirit, or spiritual part of the law, hath a more 
transcendent goodness than the bare letter of, if you will suppose the one 
severed from the other ; as in an unregenerate man's light they are actually 
severed. This will appear from Bom. vii. 12, ' The law is holy, and the 
commandment hoh , just, and good.' Here yon have a goodness of hoi' 
the law is holy and good, that is, good with that kind of goodness. Now, 
what is it in the law that renders it good with this goodness of holiness? 
It is the spiritnalness, the spirit of it. Therefore, ver. 14, by way of 
application, this other epithet is added, ' The law is spiritual, but I am 
carnal, sold under sin.' Thus, in his regenerate estate, he discerned and 
discovered the difference of things. He in these words, comparing that 
spiritual light (which ho now when a Christian had) with his own old frame 
of heart, and the remainder thereof in him in part ; and all the excellency, 
or the best goodness thereof, he now brings to the spiritual knowledge and 
light of the law, which as a Christian he now had obtained ; which there- 
fore by way of emphasis and diilerencc, he thus utters, ' We know the law:' 
that is, by the light which is spiritual. We now have found that former 
estate and frame of heart to be, and to have been, but flesh. And then ho 
says in ver. 18, 'I know' (still he speaks in the style of that his new 
spiritual light he now had attained of the law) ' that in my flesh dwells no 
good thing,' whatever I have judged aforetime of what was in my flesh, in 
the state of unregencracy. And whereas it might be said unto Paul, Yea, 
but was not, and is not now the natural light of the law in your conscience, 
and the impressions you have had from the law then, were they not good 
things, and are not the remainders of them such still ? Oh, but (says Paul) 
they all fell short of the goodness of holiness that ought to be in them, 
viz., of that goodness which the spirit of the law requires. The law is holy, 
spiritual, and good. But no such good thing was to be found in my flesh. 
And the reason of this is, because that even the letter of the law itself, as 
given by God (if you would suppose it severed from that wherein the spirit 
of the law, or wherein the holiness of it consists, and is as the soul thereof) 
commandeth many outward duties, as to pray, fast ; yet if the spiritual 
part were taken out and concealed, which is to perform them in a spiritual 
manner, with holy affections of love to God, joy in God, and with holy 
aims and ends for God and his glory, so as to sanctify him in the heart : 
in this case, even these very commandments alone, as so considered, could 
not be said to be good, with a goodness of holiness. Nay, so considered, 
they are but the carcass of the law. And as the body without the soul is 
dead, so would these commandments or duties, performed thus only accord- 
ing to the letter, be but the dead letter of fhe law ; for the spirit that should 
inspire them with that which is their proper life, would be still wanting. 
So that as we may say of the body, when dead, that it is good indeed with 
the goodness that is common to other creatures, but not with that goodness 
which is proper to a man, much less that is proper to a holy man (the 
proper and primary subject of which is the soul of a man, which is now 
gone and departed), so is it here. And in analogy to this notion, the 
works or actions of men, when they are conformed but to that outward 
part of the law, and the duties thereof, are termed in Scripture but the 
carcass of duties : 1 Tim. iv. 8, ' Bodily exercise profiteth nothing' (so here 
he compare th the outward performance), but the inward part, the spiritual 


part, in the words afore, he terrneth ' godliness,' in opposition or distinc- 
tion from the other godliness,* and as that which is the soul, the life, and 
form of holy duties, and constitutes them such. Yea, and in the like 
allusion he terrneth such performances ' dead works,' which men use to 
perform from that old legal conscience ; and for the taking awaj' the guilt 
of which, and withal to inspire their consciences with a new principle to 
serve the living God, a man needs the blood of Christ : Heb. ix. 14, ' The 
blood of Christ shall purge your conscience from dead works, to serve the 
living God.' 

You see what account the outward part of the law hath (severed from 
the spirit of it) in this supposition made. Now, it is certain, de facto, 
that that light which is in the consciences of men in their natural condi- 
tion, though never so much raised, doth fall short of or is severed from the 
spirit, or spiritual genuine tincture, or shrine of the law (by the rule of this 
proposition), and so is not indeed the true, proper, real light of the law, 
and so can no more be called the law written in the heart, than, as I said, 
bodily exercise, or a carcass, can properly be termed a man, or a picture 
the man himself of whom it is the picture. This is evident from what Paul 
acknowledgeth of himself, whilst he was a legal illuminate, or a Pharisee, in 
that same chapter, Rom. vii. Is it not strange you should hear Paul say 
of himself that whilst he was a Pharisee he was without the law ? But so 
he expressly speaks : Rom. vii. 9, ' I was alive without the law once.' He 
speaks of his former estate under the light of the oldness of the letter, of 
which he had spoken, ver. 6. What ! is Paul without the law ? Why, 
his skill and knowledge therein was his greatest excellency ; and if he were 
versed in anything, he was in the law. Yea, but, says Paul, it was not the 
law, it was but the carcass of it, which lay buried in my understanding. 
' And when the commandment came,' says he — the commandment, that is, 
that which is only and properly the commandment, and which is the spirit 
of it, when it came — • sin revived, and I died.' It is a like pbrase of 
speech as when it is said of a dead carcass raised from the dead, 1 Kings 
xvii. 22, ' that the soul of the child came in,' or that ' the spirit of life 
entered in,' Rev. xi. 11 ; so here a new spiritual light of the law came in, 
and informed that former light his conscience had in the oldness of the 
letter, and this he calls the commandment ; and then he saw the difference 
to be such as hereupon he says now, and not afore, ' the commandment 
came,' and now, and not before, says he, ' I know the law is spiritual, but 
I am carnal,' and ' there dwells no good in my flesh,' as in the following 
verses he cries out. 

III. The light of the law in an unregenerate man's conscience is but 
literal, the shadow, the carcass of the true knowledge of the law. This I 
touched on in the former assertions ; but further, my text here speaks cor- 
respondency to this. He doth not say here of the Gentiles, that the law 
is written in their hearts, but only the rb 'igyov rou vo/xou, the work, or rather 
the effect of the law ; but it is not affirmed that the law is written there. 
It is but the carcass of the law and conscience ; whilst according to that 
light it urgeth the duty to be done, and yet by motives short of the spiri- 
tual end, it bringeth forth but a dead work, a dead child, something only 
of the law, as the text hath it. As itself, and the best light thereof, is but 
a dead letter of the law, so the work or birth thereof exceeds not the life 
or kind of the principle or work it came forth of, which the apostle, if not 
under this similitude, yet in the thing . itself, holds forth in that foremen- 
* Qu. 'bodily exercise'? — Ed. 

Chap. V.] in our salvation. 2G5 

tioned Heb. ix. 14, ' Ho shall purge your consciences from dead works, to 
serve the living God.' Where, 1, he conjoins these two, conscience and 
dead works. Conscience is the cause or principle, works are the effect ; 
for conscience is the cause of all actions or works that pretend to any good- 
ness in us. 2. He speaks of what our consciences are by nature, and in 
our natural condition, and of itself, and so it would ever be the producer 
of dead works, which the living God would not accept, as not suited or 
proportioned to him, as he is the living God. 3. Our consciences there- 
fore need the blood of Christ to purge them, as well from that defilement 
that is in them (which causeth them still naturally to miscarry, and to 
bring forth none but dead works) as well as to purge away the guilt of sins, 
whereof it is the proper and only receptacle. 4. That the blood of Christ 
is thus applied, that conscience, being purged and renewed, may be enabled 
for time to come to bring forth living works, or fruit to the living God, as 
formerly ; for so far as it remains unregenerate it brings forth none but dead 
works ; conscience, whether good or bad, being in all states one eminent 
principle of either. 

Now, to draw up what has been said, and so to join what is yet to follow 
to what hath gone before. As the outward precepts of the law itself, if in 
supposition severed from the spirit of the law, are not properly the law, 
but only the carcass and shadow of it, and so have not the proper genuine 
goodness of the law in them ; so answerably the light of natural conscience 
in natural men, which directs only unto this carcass of bodily exercise, 
and wants that which is the life and spirit of the law, is but the shadow 
thereof. And therefore such are the works thence issuing, they are all 
but ' dead works,' and works of the flesh, performed in the ' oldness of the 

Now, to draw forth this thread of analogy yet further, as the Scripture 
gives us the clue and line, you may find, Rom. ii. 20, that this light of 
conscience and knowledge in the law, which the highest in the form of that 
Pasdagogy, or school of the Jews, attains to (that were unregenerate), was 
but /j,6g<puei$ rv\g yvuiaeog, ' a form of knowledge, and of the truth in the law.' 
I termed it even now the picture or shadow of the law ; and this expression 
here answers for it, it being spoken as in opposition to the truth and real 
spiritual knowledge of the law, as the very letter of the words imports, 
f&ogpwffiv rr t g aX^hag it rip vo/iy, the form or appearance of that which is 
the truth, reality, or spirit of the law. There are three things to be con- 
sidered : 1. The truth of the law; 2. The knowledge of that truth; 3. That 
the light a carnal Jew had was but the form, or fiogptuffig, of the knowledge 
of the truth which is in the law. Some have understood this word, ' form 
of the knowledge,' to signify no more than that system or method of 
knowledge which the learned Jews had in the law drawn into a form, such 
as scholars have in other arts and sciences. And that which seemed to 
afford strength to this notion as the sole support of it, is that (2 Tim. i. 13) 
the sum or substance of that doctrine Paul had delivered to Timothy, as a 
teacher of others, is called ' a form of wholesome words.' And Paul here 
speaks of those that were teachers of the Jews, that boasted in that know- 
ledge. But let it be considered, 

1. That the word here is not the same with that used there: it is fioppueig 
here, it is usrorfaratfig there, which latter is an artificial draught or sampler, 
either serving for doctrine or practice, whereby to teach others or a man's 
self to work by. It is not drawn from painters' pictures only, but from 
patterns or examples, and things lively acted. And so interpreters make it 


to be the subject of vehement exhortation in Paul to Timothy, to be both a 
real ' pattern in life,' as well as a teacher in doctrine, according as he had 
presented an example or platform of both unto him. 

But 2. Moreover, then, Eom. ii., the word is (Logpwtiig, the vizor, the mask, 
the appearance, the outward form, of what is the truth, reality, or substance, 
and so holds affinity with that phrase, 2 Tim. iii. 5, ' Having a form of god- 
liness' (it is the same word), ' denying the power thereof;' and so it is op- 
posed to the reality, power, or substance of godliness, whereof this is the 
shadow, the appearance. 

3. Now, parallel these two places, and you will find that, as the words, so 
the scope is the same. His scope here is to unmask the best of the unre- 
generate Jews, in respect of what they most prided themselves in, viz., the 
knowledge and light their consciences had of the law. And he accordingly 
sets himself to speak by way of diminution or derogation, that the best of 
their knowledge, though such as had the system of the whole law in it, was 
but the shadow, the outward form, in respect of what was true knowledge, 
and the real truth of the law, the spiritualness and holiness that was in it ; 
even as in Timothy he terms the outward profession of godliness in the 
lives of hypocrites, or the impressions of it on their wills, but a ' form of 
godliness,' severed from, and in opposition to, 'the powers' thereof. 
Truth and form are opposed in the one, power and form in the other. 
Now, if the light and knowledge, in the understandings and consciences of 
the best of the Jews, was but in this sense the form of knowledge, and the 
mere outward picture or shadow of the truth in the law, and so utterly 
differing from the spirituality of that law, then the dim light in the 
Gentiles (whom in the 13th and 14th verses he spake of) is so much 
more. And then this is the result of all, that the light both of the one 
and other, and so of all men unregenerate, doth fall short of that real 
goodness or holiness that is in the law, because it is but the shadow of the 
truth of it. 

IV. I proceed now to the fourth proposition or query, namely, What 
further goodness this light of the law and word hath in natural men, moro 
than is common to other creatures ? 

1. It would seem to have more, because it is the picture of the law, 
which in every part thereof hath a transcendent goodness, above what is in 
other creatures. 

2. So as to give the goodness it hath what title or term you please, 
essentially short of holiness, and that goodness that is in the law, as it is 
spiritual and good, there will be found a moral goodness in it, which, 
according to the rate or exchange of philosophy, is above that which is 
merely natural, or the common goodness of other creatures. Such we grant 
it to be ; but add withal, that still men do but afford thereby an evidence 
to condemn themselves the more deeply for having abused it, and for having 
been unholy under it. 

3. It is no dissonancy to truth to say that there is, if not a middle kind 
of goodness, yet an excellency above that which is natural or common to 
all creatures, and this other of holiness. As, for example, there is an 
image of God in man, in the substance and natural faculties of the soul, 
that it is a spirit, and hath his understanding, will, and sovereignty over 
the creatures. There is a likeness to God, which is not found in other 
creatures ; which (as may be inferred from Gen. ix. G) continues in a man 
now fallen, and for which God there puts that valuation upon the life 
of a man above that of a beast, or any other creature, and in comparison 

Chap. V. j in our salvation. 267 

of which tho goodness that is in man's naturo substantially (though now 
fallen) hath tho peculiar honour to be called the ' imago of God ;' whereas 
other creatures are but vestigia, or footprints, and no way the image. Thero 
is a transcendent goodness, which yet still is short and void of tho imago 
of God, which consists in true holiness, which man hath utterly lost, though 
he was at first created in it, Col. iii. 3 compared with Eph. iv. 24. Now 
so it is with these impresses of the law on conscience. 

Yea, 4. I shall acknowledge further, that these beams of light are a 
more excellent image of God than that natural or substantial image spoken 
of, and that because they arc the shadows and impresses of his law and 
divine will, and so are more worth than all the substanco or faculties of 
man's soul considered apart from them ; yet still I may say comparatively 
of them, as Paul speaks of the old literal covenant, Heb. x. 1, ' They 
are but the shadow, and not the very image of the reality of tho things' of 
the law. 

And the light of that similitude which was struck out of Scripture will 
help to clear this farther goodness that is in it above that which is natural ; 
and yet relieve no man in his thoughts that it is holiness, or any degree of 
it. You have heard that it is the form or outward picture of the truth of 
the law. Now, as in a picture, there may be considered a double truth 
and goodness, the one natural in the colours laid, which are the materials 
of it, especially when they are true and good colours of their kind ; the 
other truth in the picture is artificial, as it is a true picture of that which 
it represents, which is by so much the more esteemed true and good, by 
how much it is more like unto him for whom it is the picture : so this form 
of knowledge, and of the truth in the law, hath a natural goodness in it, 
which is in all creatures. It hath also a further goodness, it resembles the 
law, and shadows forth the things thereof, which yet is short, far short of 
that truth and goodness of holiness, or of the spirit that is in the law itself, 
or of that pure light thereof which is in the conscience of a man regene- 
rate. And it ordinarily falls out, that as pictures represent but the out- 
wards, so this shadow of the law in natural conscience represents only the 
outwards of the law, the things to be done, the letter of the law (as the 
apostle, Rom. ii. 27, speaks), but there is a life, a spirit, a soul in the law 
written in the heart of a regenerate man, which this reacheth not, till God 
shall breathe it in, as he did a soul into Adam's body, which was formed 
first. The holy word and law consists of letter and spirit (as was said), which 
letter severed from the spirit is not holy with that holiness which is proper 
to the law, for Quicquid dicitur de tola, non dicitur de qualibet parte, What 
is said of the whole law, take the spiritual part and literal part together, is not 
said of that one part, the letter only. Or suppose (as you will object) that, 
in some men, light of conscience imitates to represent the inwards, and so 
instruct and direct to the right end ; yet still, as the inwards of a man 
have in anatomy their pictures cut and drawn, as well as the outwards of 
a man, so there is a literal knowledge even of the real spiritual know- 
ledge, which is seen in the effects, that it sanctifies not the heart, nor the 
conscience in which it is. Some men's knowledge is more to the life (the 
Holy Ghost hath a curious pencil), and yet but fio^uett, ty\c, yvufcoig, the 
form of knowledge still, and wanting the light of life, as Christ calls it, 
John viii. 12. These goodnesses I for my part shall ever acknowledge to 
be in the light of conscience and moral virtues ; and I have the more 
amply insisted on it, that protestant doctrine may not be accounted so 
absurd, as to affirm that all in men unregenerate is esteemed by them so 


wholly sinful, as even the light of conscience, moral virtues and spiritual 
gifts, are in themselves sinfully corrupt ; but only in the subject they do 
become such, and in respect of their hearts' management of them. 


What is necessary to make conscience a good and holy conscience, ivhich the 
Scripture describes to be only in iiersons regenerate. 

The inquiry next will be what goodness it is in the light of conscience 
that risetk up to the goodness of holiness ; or, which is all one, when it is 
that a man's conscience, in the balance and proper language of the Scrip- 
ture, is termed ' a good conscience.' To make way for the resolution of 
this, and clear my way for it, I must premise two things. 

1. That a regenerate man is said to have a good conscience in two re- 
spects. 1. In respect of this justification of his person, and sprinkling the 
blood of Christ on his conscience, to clear him from the guilt of his sins. 
And a man is said oppositely to have an evil conscience — thus, Heb. x. 22, 
the sprinkling from an evil conscience is termed — when his sins are not 
pardoned, but himself remains in an unjustified state, with the guilt of all 
his sins abiding on him, and in his conscience, the register of all. Look, 
as a bill is called a foul bill when it contains many heavy articles of sad 
crimes and accusations, so is conscience named too. It is also called a 
good or evil conscience, as the state of the man is good or bad, for it is the 
representor of that state unto him ; even as the urine is said to be good 
when it shews a healthy and good state and habit of the body, or to be a 
bad water when it represents a bad Kgao/c, or distemper. For conscience 
is the sink of all sins, as the urine is the drain of all humours. Now, this 
kind of goodness or evilness of conscience belongs not unto this subject, 
this is but a relative goodness or badness of it. 

But 2dly. The goodness we seek after is that of holiness, or in respect 
of sanctification. It is this inherent goodness of it I seek to define. 

I premise two things. 

1. You know that God himself alone is the fountain of all goodness, and 
the measure and standard of it. 

2. In discoursing of the inherent goodness of the conscience, I am not 
to shew at large wherein the holiness of all light that is in a believer's heart 
doth consist, but I shall, punctually to my subject, confine myself to this 
consideration, in what the holiness of the light of the law in a regenerate 
man's conscience, and as it is properly seated in that faculty, doth consist. 

You know God himself alone is the fountain of goodness, and the mea- 
sure and standard of it, 1 Kings xiv. 13. It is spoken of a child of 
Jeroboam, to express the truth of that grace that was in him, that ' in him 
only was found some good thing towards the Lord God of Israel.' That 
alone is goodness, which respecteth and is pointed unto him who is only 
good, Mat. xix. 17. And so the goodness in each faculty consists in 
what sets up God in it according to its kind. Now then, by the help of 
this general rule, let us proceed to the discovery of this goodness in 

1. That light in conscience which sets up the knowledge of God, as God, 
is the light of life. This is certain ; and it is common to the light in the 
conscience of all men, good or bad, that it hath a knowledge of, and an 

Chap. VI.] in our salvation. 2G9 

eyeing God, and of a divinity ; for from thence ariseth the power, the oblig- 
ing or terrifying power, that conscience hath in any man. The Gentiles, 
so far as they had any conscience, so far did a glimmering of God rise up 
in their hearts. There is a holding the truth in unrighteousness which is 
spoken of, Rom. i. 18, whereby is signified their sinning against light ; 
and the next verse tells us that tho truth so sinned against was the to 
yworov tov &iov, something of God k