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sition must be ascribed entirely to the Holy Spirit ; and no sort of faith could possibly work by holy love, if the heart continued unregenerate, and in a state of enmity against God.

The views, which saving faith gives the soul of those objects that revelation brings to our knowledge, are suited to call forth the most lively ex·ercises of love to Christ, and the most delightful admiration of his glorious excellencies, and his compassion to lost sinners. They will excite also an ardent desire after the nearest union and communication with him; a decided preference of his favour to all earthly objects: a fear of coming short of this highest privilege and advantage; gratitude proportioned to our hope; zeal for his glory; attachment to his cause; and a peculiar regard to all which stands related to him or bears his image. This love of Christ is substantially the same with the love of God: for we sinners know, approach, believe, trust, love, and honour the Father, only in and by his beloved Son. The same exercises of faith call forth our love to our brethren, and to all men, according to the precepts and example of our beloved Redeemer: and thus "faith "working by love" manifests itself in all godliness, righteousness, temperance, kindness, and beneficence. Even repentance, in all its exercises to the end of life, is excited by a belief of the divine testimony in one way or other; while some degree of true repentance is necessary to explicit faith in Christ. In proportion to the increase and vigour of living faith, will be the growth and ardour of all holy affections, and our persevering fruitfulness in all real good works. The more

clearly and constantly the believer contemplates a crucified Saviour, and scripturally relies on him with earnest application of heart for all the blessings of salvation: the more humble, spiritual, obedient, zealous, loving, harmless, pure, self-denying, and actively beneficent will he be.


And the reason of this is, because true faith, springing from regeneration, co-exists in the heart with all other gracious dispositions: and, evidencing to the soul one part of divine truth after another, as circumstances require and occasions are given, it excites them all by turns into more vigorous and sensible exercise. It is, however, an unedifying curious speculation to dispute which of them, in order of time, has the priority: seeing "the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus," quickening the sinner who had been dead in sin, is at once the author and source of them all. The varied experiences of different persons, with the numberless undiscoverable, and generally unnoticed, circumstances, which cause some first to attend to one, and some to another, of the feelings of their own minds, will certainly lead them to different and even contrary determinations, according to the schemes of doctrine which they severally adopt.

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It is very commonly stated, that faith purifies the heart' but the language of Scripture is more accurate: namely, that "God purifieth the "heart by faith: "* Having enabled the sinner, by his new-creating grace, cordially to believe the gospel; by the varied actings of that faith he ex

* Acts xv. 9.

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cites every holy affection; and, as these prevail and gather strength, all unholy desires and propensities are dethroned, hated, mortified, and gradually abolished. In entire agreement with this, yet taking another view of the subject, the apostle Peter says, "Seeing ye have purified your souls, "in obeying the truth, through the Spirit, unto "unfeigned love of the brethren; see that ye love "one another with a pure heart fervently." They were active in this "purifying of their souls;" but it was effected by "obeying the truth;" and this was done by the grace of the Holy Spirit: for "the fruit of the Spirit is love." No mán, who scripturally holds the doctrine of regeneration, will ascribe the "purifying of the heart" to faith, as to its efficient cause; but faith is the spiritual organ of sight and perception, through which invisible things are so shewn to the soul by the Holy Spirit, as to effect, through his continual agency, a gradual renovation. Faith (being itself the gift of God and the work of the Spirit,) applies for and receives those heavenly influences, by which the seeds of universal holiness, sown in regeneration, spring forth and grow to`maturity: according to the declaration of St Paul; "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, even as by the Spirit of the Lord;" and thus we are gradually purified from the remainder of our proud, carnal, and selfish passions and propensities.

Similar to this is the language of St. John,

* 1 Pet. i. 22.



"This is the love of God, that we keep his com"mandments, and his commandments are not grievous. For whatsoever is born of God over"cometh the world; and this is the victory that "overcometh the world, even our faith. Who is "he that overcometh the world, but he that be"lieveth that Jesus is the Son of God?"* The apostle ascribes these effects, of "loving God, keeping his commandments, and overcoming "the world," to the faith of those who are "born "of God;" and he evidently speaks of this faith as essentially belonging to that which is born of God. Such a faith, exciting and working by holy love, gives the soul a decided victory over the love of worldly objects, the fear of men, a false shame and regard to character, and every carnal and selfish. principle: and it thus renders obedience not only practicable, but delightful. Thus St. Paul exclaims, "God forbid that I should glory, save in "the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ; by whom the "world is crucified to me, and I unto the world."+ He also shews us that all the self-denying, coura geous, and zealous obedience of the Old Testament saints sprang from faith, as its immediate source. 66 By faith Enoch walked with God." "By faith "Abraham obeyed;" and offered Isaac. "By faith "Moses refused to be called the son of Pharaoh's daughter; choosing rather to suffer affliction "with the people of God, than to enjoy the plea<< sures of sin for a season; esteeming the reproach "of Christ greater riches than the treasures of Egypt: for he had respect unto the recompence



1 John v. 3-5.

+ Gal. vi. 14.


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"of the reward. By faith he forsook Egypt, not "fearing the wrath of the king; for he endured, as seeing him who is invisible." Let any sober and pious mind determine whether the judgment, choice, and purpose of faith, in these cases, were not spiritual and holy.-In many instances, the particular exercise of faith, to which the obedience® is ascribed, was entirely distinct from reliance on Christ for salvation: but even here faith had the same general nature; it cordially received the testimony of God, and in his prescribed way expected the performance of the promises, from his divine mercy, power, and faithfulness; and had reference to the predicted Messiah, in whom all the nations of the earth should be blessed. The same faith, which interested these ancient servants of God in Christ for justification, influenced them to render the promptest obedience in the most difficult circumstances: and it is observable, that the same actions, which the apostle ascribes to faith as their principle, are elsewhere spoken of as the result and evidence of other holy dispositions. "By "faith Abraham, when he was tried, offered up "Isaac." " By this I know that thou fearest God, seeing thou hast not withheld thy son, thine only son, from me.

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The words of the Lord Jesus to the apostle of the gentiles shew the holy nature, as well as the sanctifying efficacy, of true faith. "I send thee to "them, to open their eyes, and to turn them from "darkness to light, and from the power of Satan "unto God: that they may receive forgiveness of

*Heb. xi. 17. Gen. xxii. 12.

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