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tables of stone, but on the fleshly tables of the heart. And not a few who have had their names written here in this book, in these living epistles, and who have had a place in their mind, judgment, memory, conscience, heart, and affections; of whom we could say, and have said, as Paul did, Ye are in our hearts to die and live with you. But God blots many out of this book of life, and it is to be remarked, that it is common among men, when they discover a person to be a different man from what they once thought, to say, “He, or such an one, is quite out of my books.” Nor, could Paul say of Alexander the copperlinith, Demas, Philetus, Hermogenes, and Hymeneus, that these were in his heart to live and die with them? No, God had made them manifest that they were no true fellow

labourers, or yoke-fellows, with Paul. God blotted · out the above names from his book, and from the heart and affection of his faithful fervant Paul. And so it is in this epistle wiitten to us; many by subscribing the articles of the establishment, and then joining with them that hate the truth, are discovered by the word of God, and by their own conduct, to be none of them that love the truth and peace, or who received the truth in the love of it; for not such, but those that do not receive the truth in the love of it, shall be given up to strong delusiuns, to believe a lie and be damned. A real child of God will hold fast that which he hath till Christ come ; for it is he who keeps the word of his patience that he will keep from the hour of temptation; and, it is they who keep


Christ's sayings, and only they, that shall never see death. These are blotted out of the book of the facred scriptures, where their name to live stood; and this epistle declares them dead; and the Lord's manifestation of them thews us where to apply his declaration of them. And God will make them that are not his, work themselves out of his children's books too; for, when they exhibit their pride, stiffness, stubbornness, and inflexibility, before the word of truth, that they will neither bow, yield, nor submit to divine revelation, and the will of God made known therein, we know by our own experience where they are ; for neither the unruly, presumptuous, nor rebellious, itand on the list of God's obedient ones, but they dwell in a dry land. And he will blot them out of the affections and prayers of his people, however painful it may be; as we see in Samuel. . Saul had a strong standing in the heart and in the prayers of Samuel; yea, he mourned for Saul, even till God rebuked him for it. An:: the Lord said to Samuel, How long wilt thou mourn for Saul, seeing I have rejeeted him? Saul had turned his back upon the word of God, and had not kept that which the Lord had committed to him when he sent him against Amalek; for which a heavy charge was brought in against him, for he had refused God's orders, and followed his own will, as appears by the charge following:

..And Samuel. said, Hath the Lord as great delight in burnt-offerings and sacrifices as in obeying the voice of

ike Lord? Behold, to obey is better than facrifice, and

to bearken than the fat of rams. For rebellion is as tbe fin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry. Because thou hast reje&ted the word of the Lord, be bath also rejeEted thee from being king. i Sam. XV.23. After this, all Samuel's affections and mourn. ings to God for him were of no avail; nor did God ever after hear or answer his own prayer, either by dream, vision, or prophet; but an evil spirit from the Lord was soon fent upon him, which influenced him with a murdering disposition, till he killed all the Lord's priests at Noph, and fought the life of David, and went from bad to worse ; first to inquire of the witch of Endor, and from that to suicide ; and next to the devil; for no murderer hath eternal life abiding in him. i John iïi. 15. Thus doth God blot the diiobedient out from under heaven by death, and out of the holy scriptures, and from any part in that which is written therein, when he makes them mani. fest, and out of the hearts and affections of his children, however beloved by them. Nor have I a single doubt upon my mind but that this whole epiftle, out of which my text is taken, speaks to us; and I be. lieve in my conscience that God hath given me the true sense of the Holy Spirit in what I have written upon the subject; and that the whole is applicable to those whom God hath discovered, and to whom the Lord himself applies it. i

But this shall never be the case of God's elect, of the few sacred names in Sardis who have not defiled their garments : no; these thall walk with Chrift in

white; and I will not, faith the Lord, blot their names out of the book of life. No; not out of the book of God's decree to life, for they are ordained to eternal life; nor out of the scriptures of truth, for they have a good report of the truth itself, therefore their feed. and their name shall remain there ; nor out of the book of God's remembrance; for the righteous fhall be had in everlasting remembrance ; nor out of the hearts of the saints, for they are in one bond of love; nor out of the conscience of finners, for God makes them manifest there, as may be seen by the foolish virgins applying to them for oil when their own lamps went out; and in their consciences they shall abide as a witness against them for their enmity, and that even in hell itself. I will not blot his name out of the book of life,

But I will confess his name before my Father, and before bis angels. This is opposed to disowning, disapproving, and denying, a finner at the last day; which lies in these words, Depart from me, I know you not. This shall not be the case with the few names in Sardis : no; I will confess them before my Father; I will own them, and acknowledge them; I will accept them, and embrace them; I will applaud them for their faithful adherence to me and my truth ; and I will prefent them to my Father withi a · Behold me, and the children which thou haft given me.” Yea, I will shew you plainly of the Father, and he will accept and bless you, and glorify you in me, and with me, and you shall be made per



fect in one. And I will confess you before the an, gels of heaven as my faithful followers and servants, who have suffered much dishonour, disgrace, and reproach, for my fake, and who have come through great tribulation; and they shall own and honour you as the heirs of glory, and as my spouse and bride, and shout and rejoice when you shall enter the royal palace. Thus will the Lord confess his faithful followers. And what he says is affectionate and fervent, in truth and sincerity, and may be fafely depended upon and expected when a few more days are rolled over our heads.

The Lord bless what hath been spoken. I add no more. O

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