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at the allowance of our opponents, address such persons, ged to sas those who need repentance and conversion ; and hey w may use every warning, exhortation, persuasion, and er is . - expostulation, that we can find in the whole Scripotten c ture, addressed to persons of every character and ouche nation ; provided we do but avoid the term regeneEng on

ration, and others of similar import, which are prohad, to hibited to us.

If nothing appear, in the avowed sentiments, or open conduct, of professed christians, which is inconsistent with their profession; we certainly ought to address them, as the apostles did the primitive churches, as "saints in Christ Jesus," &c. But are adulterers, fornicators, drunkards, profane swearers, thieves, &c. &c., to be spoken to as saints, and “ elect of God, holy and beloved ;” merely because

of their external baptism? And do not a large proion,'

portion of baptized persons, even in this favoured nation, consist of such characters? I say, in this land; not to speak of other professed christian countries, in which, we are told, the standard of morals, and the characters of the inhabitants in general, are sunk immensely lower. Either these characters do, or they do not, form a part of our congregations. If they do not; it is in vain to preach, as if they were present : but if they do, at any time attend, in what language ought we to address them? As saints? or, as unconverted sinners ?

I almost feel a disposition to glory, as one of the evangelical clergy, so called, in this circumstance, that our style of preaching most certainly, brings forth numbers of these poor wretched sinners, to

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attend on our ministry. A variety of circumstances and motives may concur in occasioning this: but the fact cannot be denied. As the ministers of him, who “ came not to call the righteous, but sinners " to repentance," we must rejoice in it; even though it subjects us to a reproach, not dissimilar to that cast on him, who was called “ the friend of publi

cans and sinners." This circumstance, however, imposes on us, an obligation of addressing one part of our congregation, in a style, not suited to those, who, in a charitable judginent, may be considered as real christians. The author of these remarks was, for many years, chaplain to the Lock-Hospital, and twice every week, spoke to a number of patients, in the wards, who were in general, either prostitutes, or companions of prostitutes : yet they were, most of them baptized persons. Now ought he to have addressed them as “ saints in Christ Jesus," as “ born of God, and the children of God;" or in the language, the strongest language of Scripture, used to the most profligate heathens, or most wicked Jews ? He adopted the latter method : and he has no doubt, but a considerable number of this apparently hopeless company, will bless God to all eternity, that he did so. Some, whom he knows, as * taught by the grace of God, to deny ungodliness “and worldly lusts, and to live soberly, righteously, “ and godly in this present world, are his joy and

crown,” at present; and he has not the smallest doubt, but many more will be so in the day of Christ.

I feel an unwavering confidence, that if the bulk

of the most abandoned persons, in this christian land, could be brought under the instruction of ministers, who addressed them, exactly in the same style of instruction, reproof, warning, exhortation, expostulation, and persuasion, in which the prophets addressed the wicked Israelites, and the apostles addressed unconverted Jews and Gentiles; the most happy effects would follow, in respect of numbers among them. This might be done, even if the word regeneration were inhibited; yet the subject itself, the need, nature, source, evidences, and effects, of regeneration must be largely insisted on. And, it may be seriously apprehended, that, even in respect of the more virtuous among professed christians, keeping these topicks out of sight, or in the back ground, feeds their self-preference and selfcomplacency; and leads them to trust in their comparative virtue, instead of relying on the mercy and grace of God in Christ Jesus: and on what account are preachers among professed christians, to be restricted from declaring this most important, nay, essential, part of “ the whole counsel of God ?"

P. xciii. 1. 6. "To wait, &c." A second regen

1. To wait for a second regeneration sudden conversioni "a sensible operation of the Holy Spirit effecting a total and ' instantaneous change in their hearts and dispositions. Let them " rather be admonished to take a serious, strict, and impartial

review of their past lives ; let them compare their conduct with e the unerring rule of God's written commandments; let them • consider the folly and danger of continuing in sin; let them • determine to abandon their wicked ways; let them earnestly and faithfully pray for spiritual aid ; let them thus reneur their


eration,' is a term never found in our sermons, or writings; we suppose ungodly baptized persons, unregenerate, and needing regeneration; as Stephen supposed the wicked Jews, though outwardly ciri cumcised, to be yet “ úncircumcised in heart," and still needing the circumcision of the heart to love the Lord. Sudden conversion,' ; sensible operation, • instantaneous change' have repeatedly been considéréd. But does any Calvinist imagine a '

more instantaneous, or entire change, than that which his Lordship ascribes to baptism?

The rest of the quotation contains excellent advice ; except as the words, Let them thus renew * their minds, may seem liable to misconstruction ; though the apostle said, “ Be ye transformed in the * renewing of your mind."?

P. xciii. 1. 21. Regeneration, &c.'s To make


• minds, and they may rest assured that their pious resolutions

and virtuous exertions will be strengthened and promoted by power from on high.”.

Pages 83, 84, Refutation. 2 Rom. xii. 2.

Regeneration of those, who are already baptized, by the forcible operation of the Spirit, is one of the doctrines, by · which the weak credulity of unthinking persons is imposed

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upon in the present times. It is a dangerous illusion, calculated "to flatter the pride and indolence of our corrupt nature. It is an easy substitute for that “ Godly sorrow which worketh

repentance;" for that real amendment of life which consists • in mortifying our carnal lusts, in forsaking " the sin which " doth most easily beset us," and in an active and conscientious endeavour to obey the revealed will of GodMen, who fancy

that they have received this second birth, consider themselves, full of divine grace, are too often regardless of the laws both of God and man, affect to govern themselves by some secret

man willing by changing his disposition, and instructing his mind, is far different from a {.forcible f operation. Whether the regeneration of baptized persons who live ungodly lives, by the power of the Holy Spirit, be a doctrine held only by men of

weak credulity and unthinking persons, or not ; it certainly is not exclusively peculiar to the present times;' as many quotations already adduced. demonstrate. It has not been proved an illusion ;' when this has been done, it may be allowed to be

dangerous.' The charge of “pride, being like the • boasting Pharisee,' may be easily made, and easily retorted: but “ the day of the Lord" must shew to whom it most properly attaches. That of; indo

lence,' has already been considered. Instead of an ، easy substitute for that Godly sorrow which « worketh repentance, &c;" it is the necessary preparation for “repentance and works meet for re

pentance;" and can be known to have taken place, by no other evidence, than that real amendment

of life, which consists in mortifying our carnal - lusts, in forsaking the sin which doth most easily ...beset us, and in an active and conscientious en

deavour to obey the revealed will of God ;' as

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• rules in their own breasts, urge the suggestions of the Spirit • upon the most trifling occasions, and pretend the most positive

assurance of their salvation, while perbaps they are guilty of the grossest immoralities, and are treading under foot the Son of God, by the most palpable departure from the plain and sim.

ple rules of his pure and holy religion; or at least by boasting • of the peculiar favour of heaven, they imitate the persons 5 spoken of in the Gospel, who " trusted in ihemselves that "they were righteous, and despised others."

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