Page images
PDF
EPUB

WH

A. A strong faith gives much. glory to God; Rom. iv. 19; 26. And being not weak io faith, he considered dot his own body now dead, when he was about an hundred years old, neither get the deadoess of Sarah's womb. He staggered not at the promise of God through unbelief ; but was strong is faith, givjog glory to God. Q. 13. What is the second benefit of a strong faith?

A. It gives the soul the ravishing forefight and foretastes of heaven upon earth; 1 Pet. i. 8. Whom having not seen, ye love ; in whom though now ye fee him not, yet believiog, ye rejoice with joy uospeakable, and full of glory.

Q. 14. What is the last office faith doth for a believer in this world?

A. It fupports and encourages him at death by the promiles, when all other comforts fail ; Heb. xi. 13. These all died in faith, not having received the promises, but having seen them afar off, and were persuaded of them, and embraced them, and confeffed that they were strangers aod pilgrims on the earth.

of saving Repentance. Queft. 87.

"Hát is repentance unto life!

A. Repentance unto life is a faving grace, whereby a sinner, out of a true sense of his sin, and apprehension of the mercy of God in Chrift, doth with grief and hatred of his fin, turn from it unto God, with full purpose of, and endeavour after new obedience.

Q. 1. Who is the author of faving repentance ?

A. The Spirit of God is the author of it ; the heart by 02ture is so hard, that done but the Spirit can break it ; Ezek. Xxxvi. 26, 27. A new keart alfo will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you : And I will take away the story heart out of your felh, and I will give you an heart of flesh. And I will put my Spirit within you, &c.

2. In what act doth all true repentance begin? A. It begins is a true light and sense of sin, and the danger and misery we are in by fin ; Acts ii. 37. Now when they heard this, they were pricked in their hearts, &c.

Q. 3. Why doch God work such a sense of sio and misery?

A. He doch it to make Christ desireable in the sioner's eyes, that he may fly to him; 'Matth. ix. 12, 13. But when Jesus heard that, he laid onto them, They that be whole need not a physician, but they that are sick. But go ye and learn what that meaneth, I will have mercy, and not sacrifice ; for I am Dot come to call the righteous, but finners to repentance.

Q. 4. Is the light of fią fufficient to repentance ?

A. No; there must be appprehension of mercy and forgivepels with God, or else no man cao siocerely repent; Rom. ii, 4. Not knowing that the goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance. And this mercy must be discerned in and through Chrilt ; Zech. xii10. And they shall look upon ime whom they have pierced, and they shall mourn for him as one mourn. eth for his only fon, and shall be in bitterness for him as one that is in bitterness for his first-born.

Q. 5. Wherein doth repentance chiefly confift?'

A. It consists in real inward sorrow for fin, as committed against God; Pfalm li. 3, 4. For I acknowledge my transgresfions, and my fia is ever before me. Agaiest thee, thee only have I fioned, and done this evil in thy sight, &c. A loathing of ourselves for it ; Ezek. xxxvi. 31. Aod (hall loath yourselves in your own sight, for your iniquities, and for your abominations. And of our best duties, as fipful and iosufficient things ; Ifa. Ixiv. 5, 6. We are all as an uaclean thing; and all our righ: teousnesses are as filthy rags, doc.

6. Whereia else doth it coufilt? A. In turning from fin, as well as grieving for it; Ifa. lv. 7. Let the wicked forsake his way, aod the uprighteous man bis shooghts, &c. Prov. xxviii. 13. He that covereth his fins, Mall not profper; bat whoso confesleth and forfakerh them, shall

have mercy,

3

Q. 7. Is torniog from fio sufficients

A. No, that is but the negative part of religion ; 'there must be also a fincere turning to God; Pfalm cxix. 59. I thought on my ways, and turned my feet uoto thy testimonies ; Acts xi. 23. And exhorted them all

, that with purpose of heart they would cleave unto the Lord.

Q. 8. Is all forrow for sin faviog?

A. No; there is a repentance that doth Bo good's Matth. xxvii. 3. Then Judas which had betrayed him, when he saw that he was condemned, repented himself, &c. And a repentance voto life; Acts xi. 18. Then hath God also to the Gentiles granted repentance unto life.

Q. 9. What are the signs of true repeotance ?

A. Fear of sin; care to preserve ourselves from it ; and zeal to honour God by new obedieoce ; 2 Cor. vii. ii. For behold, this self-fame thing that ye forrowed after a godly fort, what carefulness it wrought in you ; yea, what clearing of yourselves; yea, what indignation ; yea, what fear; yea, what vehement desire ; yea, what zeal ; yea, what reveoge? In all things you hase approved yourselves to be clear in this matter.

& 1o. Is there a deceflity of repentance, in order to for giveness?

A. Yes, there is; and they are therefore conjoined in fcrip. sure ; Acts v. 31. For to give repentance to lfrael, and forgive. nels of Gos. And destruction threatened to the impenitent; Luke xiii. 3. Except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish.

Q. 11. What is the first inference hence?

A. That it is a false doctrine, which teaches us that fins are actually forgiven from eternity; and therefore no need either of tepentance or prayer, save only for the manifestation of pardon.

Q. 12. What is the second inference hence ?

A. That ao hard heart is a dreadful sigo of a lost state of soul; Rom. ii. 5. But after thy hardness and impeaitent heart, treasureft up unto thyself wrath against the day of wrath, and revelation of the righteous judgmeat of God.

Q. 13. What is the last inference beoce?

A. That there is no caufe to despair of the vileft lioder, see. ing there is power enough in the Spirit of God to break the hardeft heart; Ezek. xxxvi. 26. I will take away the stony heart out of your Aelh, and I will give you an heart of Aeln.

of Christ's Ordinances. Quest. 88. WHat are the outward means whereby Christ

communicateth to us the benefits of redemption?

A. The outward and ordinary means whereby Chrif communicateth to us the benefits of redemption, are his ordinances; especially the word, facraments, and prayer; all which are made of jectual to the cleft for falvation.

8 J. What makes any thing become a divide ordioance ?

A. The institution or appoiatment of God, is that alone which makes a divine ordinance; Matth. xxviii. 20. Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you, &c.

Q. 2. Are the institutions of all ordinances alike clear in scripture ?

A. No: Some are more explicitly and clearly revealed in scriptore than others; as the Lord's supper is more clear thap baptism : But whatever hath scripture-warrant, in the words or consequence, is of divine appointment,

Q. 3. May not men institute ordinances of divine worship?.

A. No; this in fcripture is condemped as will-worship; Col. ji. 20, 22, 23. Wherefore if ye be dead with Christ from the rudiments of the world; why, as though living in the world, are ye subject to ordivaoces ? &c. Which things indeed have a Cacw of wisdom io will-worship, &c.

[ocr errors][ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

1

. 4. Why cannot man institute a divine ordinance ?

A. He cannot do it, because it is the prerogative belonging to Chrift's kingly office ; Marth. xxviii, 20. Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you.

Q. 5. For what other reason cannot man do it?

A. Becaufe he cannot bless them, and make them effectual ta their ends : but they will be in vain ; Matth. xv. 9, But in vain do they worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men.

Q. 6. Why are the ordinances called means of salvation ?

A. Becaule by and through them the Spirit of the Lord conveys spiritual graces into meas fouls; i Cor. i. 21. It pleased God, by the foolishness of preaching, to save them that believe, i Cor. iii.

5 Who then is Paul, and who is Apollos, but ministers by whom ye believed, even as the Lord gave to every man ?

Q. 7. Whence is the virtue of ordinances ?

A. It is not in and from themselves, or the gifts and abilities of him that administers them, but from the blessing and Spirit of the Lord; 1 Cor. ii. 7. Neither is he that planteih any thiog, peither he that watereth, but God that giveth the increase. Q. 8. Do all God's ordinances attain their end?

A. Yes; there is none of them in vain, but do attain their end, in the salvation or damnation of all that come under them

i Ifa.lv. 10, 11. For as the rain cometh down, and the foow from heaven, and returneth not thither, but watereth the carth, and maketh it bring forth and bud, that it may give feed to the lower, and bread to the eater : So fhall my word be, that goeth forth out of my mouth : It shall pot return vato me void ; bur it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I send it. 2 Cor. ii. 15, 16. For we are unto God a sweet favour of Christ, io them that are saved, and in them that perish : To the one we are the favour of death uoto death, and to the other the favour of life unto life, &c.

Q. 9. Are instituted ordinaoces the only means of salvation ?

A. They are not ihe only means; for God can convert men to Chrift without them; Acts ix. 4, 5. And he fell to the earth, and heard a voice saying unto him, Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou me? And he faid, Who art thou Lord?. And the Lord said, I am Jesus, whom thou perfecutelt: It is hard for thee to kick against the pricks. But they are the ordioary standing meads; Rom. X. 14, 15. How theo snall they call on him, in whom they have not believed ? And how shall they believe ia bim, of whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear

[ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors]

:

[ocr errors]

without a preacher? And how shall they preach, except they be sent ? &c,

Q. 10. To whom are the ordinances made effectual to falvation ?

A. To all God's elect they are effectual to falvation, and to them only; Acts xiii. 48. As many as were ordained to eternal life, believed. Joho x, 26. But ye believe not, because ye are pot of my sheep, dc.

Q. 11. What is the first instruction from hence ?

A. That great preparation is due to all the ordinances, before we engage in them; Job xi. 13, 14. If thou prepare thine heart, and stretch out thine hands towards him. If iniquity be in thine hand, put it far a'way, and let pot wickedness dwell in thy taberoacles. 1 Chron. xxix. 18. And prepare their heart Boto thee,

Q. 12. What is the second inference from hence ?

A. That great reverence is due to God's ordinances, when we are actually engaged in the use of them; Psalm lxxxix. 7. God is greatly to be feared in the affembly of the saints; and to be had in reverence of all them that are about him,

Q: 13. What is the third inference from hence ?

A. That shofe people that want ordinances, are in a fad and deplorable condition; Eph. ii11, 12. Wherefore remember that ye being in time past Gentiles in the flesh, wbo are called uocircumcision by that which is called the circumcifion in the Acth made by hands; that at that time ye were without Chris, being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers from the covenants of promise, having so hope, and without God in the world.

Q. 14. What is the last instruction hence ?

A. That those that perish in the midst of ordinances, and means of salvation, will perish with aggravated perdition ; Mat. xi. 23. And thou Capernaum, which art exalted unto heaven, fhalt be brought down to hell : for if the mighty works, which have been done in thee, had been done io Sodom, it would have remained until this day.

Of the Word read and heard.
Qres. 89. How is the word made effeétual to falvation ?

A. The Spirit of God maketh the reading, but especially the preacbing of the word, an effettual means of convincing and converting finners; and building them up in holiness and comfort, through faith unto salvation.

Q. 1. What mean you by the word ?
A. By the word is meant the word of God, consigocd to

[ocr errors]
« PreviousContinue »