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fied persons as others, to the obedience thereof; and that not only in regard of the matter contained in it, but also in respect of the authority of God, the Creator, who gave it.i Neither doth Christ in the gospel any way dissolve, but much strengthen this obligation.k
VI. Although true believers be not under the law as a covenant of works, to be thereby justified or condemned ;1 yet is it of great use to them, as well as to others; in that, as a rule of life, informing them of the will of God and their duty, it directs and binds them to walk according
law of Moses, Thou shalt not muzzle the mouth of the ox that treadeth out the corn. Doth God take care for oxen? Or saith he it altogether for our sakes? For our sakes, no doubt, this is written: that he that ploweth should plow in hope; and that he that thresheth in hope, should be partaker of his hope.
V. Rom. xiii. 8, 9, 10. (See above in letter b.) Love worketh no ill to his neighbour: therefore love is the fulfilling of the law. Eph. vi. 2. Honour thy father and mother, which is the first commandment with promise. 1 John ii. 3, 4, 7, 8. And hereby do we know that we know him, if we keep his commandments. He that saith, I know him, and keepeth not his commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him. Brethren, I write no new commandment unto you, but an old commandment, which ye had from the beginning : the old commandment is the word which ye have heard from the be ginning again, a new commandment I write unto you, which thing is true in him and in you: because the darkness is past, and the true light now shineth.
i James ii. 10, 11. (See in letter b.)
A Mat. v. 17, 18, 19., (See in letter g.) For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one title shall, in no wise, pass from the law, till all be fulfilled. Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven: but whosoever shall do, and teach them, the same shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven. Jain. ii. 8. (See in letter b before.) Rom. iii. 31. Do we then make void the law through faith? God forbid: yea, we establish the law.
VI. 1 Rom. vi. 14. For sin shall not have dominion over you: for ye are not under the law, but under grace. Gal. ii. 16. Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even wo have believed in Jesus Christ; that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified. Gal. iii. 13. 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. Gal. iv. 4, 5. But when the fulness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law, to redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons. Acts xiii. 39. And by him all that believe are justified from all things, from which ye could not be justified by the law of Moses. Rom. viii. 1. There is therefore now no condemnation to them are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after
ly ;m discovering also the sinful pollutions of their nature, hearts, and lives; so as, examining themselves thereby, they may come to further conviction of, humiliation for, and hatred against sins; together with a clearer sight of the need they have of Christ, and the perfection of his obedience P It is likewise of use to the regenerate, to restrain their corruptions, in that it forbids sin ;9 and the threatenings of it serve to show what even their sins deserve, and what afflictions in this life they may expect for them, although freed from the curse thereof threatened in the law.
m Rom. vii. 12, 22, 25. Wherefore the law is holy; and the commandment holy, and just, and good. For I delight in the law of God, after the inward man. I thank God, through Jesus Christ, our Lord. So then, with the mind I myself serve the law of God: but with the flesh the law of sin. Psal. cxix. 4, 5, 6. Thou hast commanded us to keep thy precepts diligently. O that my ways were directed to keep thy statutes! Then shall I not be ashamed, when I have respect unto all thy commandments. 1 Cor. vii. 19. Circumcision is nothing, and uncircumcision is nothing, but the keeping of the commandments of God. Gal. v. 14, 16, 18 to 23. See in the Bible.
n Rom. vii. 7. What shall we say then? Is the law sin? God forbid. Nay, I had not known sin, but by the law: for I had not known lust, except the law had said, Thou shalt not covet. Rom. iii. 20. Therefore, by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in his sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin.
o James i. 23, 24, 25. For if any be a hearer of the word, and not a doer, he is like unto a man beholding his natural face in a glass; For he beholdeth himself, and goeth his way, and straightway forgeteth what manner of man he was. But whoso looketh into the perfect law of liberty, and continueth therein, he being not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the word, this man shall be blessed in his deed. Rom. vii. 9, 14, 24. For I was alive without the law once but when the commandment came, sin revived, and I died. For we know that the law is spiritual: but I am carnal, sold under sin. O wretched man that I am, who shall deliver me from the body of this death?
p Gal. iii. 24. Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith. Rom. vii. 24. (See before in the letter o. v. 25, in letter m.) Rom. viii. 3, 4. 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 that the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.
q James ii. 11. For he that said, Do not commit adultery, said also, Do not kill. Now, if thou commit no adultery, yet if thou kill, thou art become a transgressor of the law. Psal. cxix. 101, 104, 128. I have refrained my feet from every evil way: that I might keep thy word, Through thy precepts I get understanding therefore I hate every false way. Therefore I esteem all thy precepts concerning all things to be right; and I hate every false way.
r Ezra ix. 13, 14. And after all that is come upon us for our evil deeds, and for our great trespass, seeing that thou, our God, hast pun
The promises of it in like manner, show them God's approbation of obedience, and what blessings they may expect upon the performance thereof, although not as due to them by the law as a covenant of works :t so as a man's doing good, and refraining from evil, because the law encourageth to the one, and deterreth from the other, is no evidence of his being under the law, and not under grace.v
ished us less than our iniquities deserve, and hast given us such deliverance as this: Should we again break thy commandments, and join in affinity with the people of these abominations? wouldst not thou be angry with us, till thou hadst consumed us, so that there should be no remnant nor escaping? Psal. lxxxix. 30 to 34. If his children forsake my law, and walk not in my judgments; if they break my statutes, and keep not my commandments: then will I visit their transgressions with the rod, and their iniquity with stripes. Nevertheless, my loving kindness will I not utterly take from him, nor suffer my faithfulness to fail. My covenant will I not break, nor alter the thing that is gone out of my lips.
s (Lev. xxvi. to the 14th verse.) With 2 Cor. vi. 16. And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. Eph. vi. 2, 3. Honour thy father and mother, (which is the first commandment with promise.) That it may be well with thee, and thou mayest live long on the earth. Psal. xxxvii. 11. But the meek shall inherit the earth and shall delight themselves in the abundance of peace. With Mat. v. 5. Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth. Psal xix. 11. Moreover, by them is thy servant warned: and in keeping of them there is great reward.
t Gal. ii. 16. Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ; even we have believed in Jesus Christ; that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified. Luke xvii. 10. So likewise ye, when ye shall have done all those things, which are commanded you, say, We are unprofitable servants: we have done that which was our duty to do.
Rom. vi. 12, 14. Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, that ye should obey it in the lusts thereof. For sin shall not have dominion over you for ye are not under the law, but under grace. 1 Pet. iii. 8 to 12. Finally, be ye all of one mind, having compassion one of another; love as brethren, be pitiful, be courteous: not rendering evil for evil, or railing for railing; but contrarywise, blessing; knowing that ye are thereunto called, that ye should inherit a blessing. For he that will love life, and see good days, let him refrain his tongue from evil, and his lips that they speak no guile. Let him es. chew evil, and do good; let him seek peace, and ensue it. For the eyes of the Lord are over the righteous, and his ears are open unto their prayers; but the face of the Lord is against them that do evil. With Psal. xxxiv. 12 to 16. What man is he that desireth life, and loveth many days, that he may see good? Keep thy tongue from evil, and thy lips from speaking guile. Depart from evil, and do good seek peace, and pursue it. The eyes of the Lord are upon the righteous, and his ears are open unto their cry. The face of the
VII. Neither are the fore-mentioned uses of the law contrary to the grace of the gospel, but do sweetly comply with it;w the Spirit of Christ subduing and enabling the will of man to do that freely and cheerfully which the will of God, revealed in the law, requireth to be done.
OF CHRISTIAN LIBERTY, AND LIBERTY OF CON-
THE liberty which Christ hath purchased for believers under the gospel, consists in their freedom from the guilt of sin, the condemning wrath of God, the curse of the moral law; and in their being delivered from this present evil world, bondage to Satan, and dominion of sin,b from the evil of afflictions, the sting of death, the victory of the
Lord is against them that do evil, to cut off the remembrance of them from the earth. Heb. xii. 28, 29. Wherefore, we receiving a kingdom, which cannot be moved, let us have grace whereby we may serve God acceptably, with reverence and godly fear. For our God is a consuming fire.
VII. 20 Gal. iii. 21. Is the law then against the promises of God? God forbid for if there had been a law given, which could have given life, verily righteousness should have been by the law.
x Ezek. xxxvi. 27. 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. Heb. viii. 10. For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, saith the Lord; I will put my laws into their mind, and write them in their hearts: and I will be to them a God, and they shall be to me a people. With Jer. xxxi. 33. 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 will be their God, and they shall be my people.
I. a Tit. ii. 14. Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity. and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works. 1 Thess. i. 10. And to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead, even Jesus which delivered us from the wrath to come. Gal. iii. 13. 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.
b Gal. i. 4. Who gave himself for our sins, that he might deliver us from this present evil world, according to the will of God and our Father. Col. i. 13. Who hath delivered us from the power of darkmess, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son. Acts xxvi. 18. To open their eyes, and to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan unto God, that they may receive for
grave, and everlasting damnation ;c as also in their free access to God,d and their yielding obedience unto him, not out of slavish fear, but a child-like love, and willing mind.e. All which were common also to believers under the law ;f but under the New Testament, the liberty of Christians is further enlarged in their freedom from the yoke of the ceremonial law, to which the Jewish church was subjected,g and in greater boldness of access to the throne of grace,
giveness of sins, and inheritance among them which are sanctified by faith that is in me. Rom. vi. 14. For sin shall not have dominion over you: for ye are not under the law, but under grace.
c Rom. viii. 28. We know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called, according to his purpose. Psal. cxix. 71. It is good for me that I have been afflicted: that I might learn thy statutes. 1 Cor. xv. 54 to 57. So when this corruptible shall have put on corruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory. O death where is thy sting? O grave where is thy victory? The sting of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the law. But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory, through our Lord, Jesus Christ. Rom. viii. 1. There is therefore now no condemnation to them, which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.
d Rom. v. 1, 2. Therefore, being justified by faith, we have peace with God, through our Lord, Jesus Christ; by whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God.
e Rom. viii. 14, 15. For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God. For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father. 1 John iv. 18. There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment: he that feareth is not made perfect in love.
f Gal. iii. 9, 14. So, then, they which be of faith are blessed with faithful Abraham. That the blessing of Abraham might come on the Gentiles through Jesus Christ; that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith.
g Gal. iv. 1, 2, 3, 6, 7. Now I say, that the heir, as long as he is a child, differeth nothing from a servant, though he be Lord of all; but is under tutors and governors until the time appointed of the father. Even so we, when we were children, were in bondage under the elements of the world. And 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; and if a son, then an heir of God through Christ. Gal. v. 1. Stand fast, therefore, in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage. Acts xv. 10, 11. Now, therefore, why tempt ye God, to put a yoke upon the neck of the disciples, which neither our fathers nor we were able to bear? But we believe that, through the grace of the Lord, Jesus Christ, we shall be saved even as they.
h Heb. iv. 14, 16. Seeing then that we have a great high priest,