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ture and alloy of unholiness and impurity in them, as, if they were weighed in the exact balance of juftice, would be fufficient to procure their total rejection.

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In how strong a light is this represented by the facred writers; and how powerful does its ope-^ ration appear to be upon themselves? They feem penetrated and poffeft with a fenfe of the love of Chrift, and of God in him, as having finners for its object. Thus the apostle Paul reafons; "For fcarcely for a righteous man will one die, .66 yet, peradventure, for a good man fome would 66 even dare to die. But God commendeth his "love towards us, in that while we were yet finChrist died for us." And again, "If ners, "when we were enemies, we were reconciled to "God by the death of his Son †.”—What a sense of the love of Chrift is difcovered by the two fol. lowing paffages of the fame apoftle!" That "Chrift may dwell in your hearts by faith; that "ye being rooted and grounded in love, may be "able to comprehend with all faints, what is the "breadth and length, and depth, and height; "and to know the love of Chrift, which paffeth "knowledge ‡." The other is, "If any man "love not the Lord Jefus Chrift, let him be ana"thema, Maranatha §;" than which nothing could more ftrongly exprefs his own fenfe of the

Rom. v. 7, 8. ↑ Rom, v. 10.

§1 Cor. xvi. 22.

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Eph. iii, 17, 18, 19.


obligation. It deferves notice also, that the infpired writers do often reprefent it as one of the ftrongest arguments against fin, that it is a reproach and difhonour brought upon our Redeemer and Lord, "For many walk, of whom "I have told you often, and now tell you even "weeping, that they are enemies of the cross "of Chrift*. Seeing they crucify to themselves "the Son of God afresh, and put him to an open "fhame t."

I must again here, as on a former branch of the subject, observe, That, no doubt, fuch arguments as thefe, will have little or no effect upon those who have but an imperfect belief of them, which, it is to be feared, is the cafe with not a few who go under the name of Chriftian. But, is it not very evident, that they must have the ftrongest imaginable influence upon all fuch as are actuated by a lively faith in the doctrine of redemption? They must see themselves indebted to the undeserved mercy and love of God for favours of infinite value, and therefore must certainly endeavour to express their gratitude by an intire confecration of their lives to their benefactor's fervice.

This leads me to obferve in the 6th and last place, That thofe who expect juftification by the imputed righteoufnefs of Chrift, must be poffeft a fupreme or fuperlative love to God, which is not + Heb. vi. 6.

* Phil. iii. 18.


only the fource and principle, but the very fum and fubftance, nay, the perfection of holiness. That those who believe in and hope to be accepted, and finally faved, through the imputed righteousness of Chrift, must be poffeffed of a fupreme love to God, appears from what hath been, already faid upon the fubject of gratitude. Love is the most powerful means of begetting love. Thus fays the apoftle John, " We have known "and believed the love that God hath unto 66 us; God is love *." And a little after, "We love him, because he firft loved us +.". The infinite and unspeakable mercies which he hath bestowed on us, with all the circumftances attending them, the means and manner of their conveyance, which have been hinted at above, muft neceffarily excite the most ardent love in return, and every proper expreffion of it. This is their immediate and natural, nay, this is their neceffary and unavoidable effect. "For the love ❝ of Christ constraineth us, because we thus judge, that if one died for all, then were all "dead; and that he died for all, that they which "live fhould not henceforth live unto them

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felves, but unto him which died for them, and "rofe again ‡."

If any fhall think proper to affert, That favours bestowed are not to be confidered as the * 1 John iv. 16, † 1 John iv. 19. +2 Cor. v. 14.


true and formal caufes of love, but the excellence and amiable qualities of the object. Thus, for example, fuppofing any person of a character justly hateful in itself, from caprice, felf-intereft, or any other finifter motive, to bestow many fignal favours upon another, the beneficiary might receive, and delight in the favours, without efteeming, nay, even when he could not efteem, the giver. If this is coofidered as an objection against what I have just now faid, and the conclufivenefs of the argument to be founded upon it; I offer the two following anfwers to it. 1ft, That in the account given in Scripture of the redemption of the world by the fubstitution of a Saviour, and the juftification of finners by the imputed righteousness of Chrift, there is the brightest display of all the divine perfections. The almighty power, the unfearchable wisdom, the boundless goodness, the inflexible juftice, and inviolable truth of God, fhine in this great defign, with united fplendour. Every attribute, that can in reafon claim our veneration and esteem, as well as our thankfulness and gratitude, is here to be feen. Even the perfections of juftice and mercy (which I will not call jarring attributes, as fome too harshly do, but) which feem to reftrain and limit each other in their exercife, are jointly illuftrated, and shine more brightly by their union, than they could have done feparately; and, at


the fame time, the purity and holiness of the Divine Nature, which is the fum of them all, is deeply impreffed upon the mind. So that here is every thing that can produce love; worth, and excellence to merit it, love and kindness to excite and raise it. From this it evidently appears, that he who believes in the imputed righteousness of Chrift, must have a fuperlative love of God.

But 2dly, Left it should be faid, that many have not this view of the doctrine in queftion, as honourable to God, and reprefenting him in an amiable light, but the contrary; I obferve, that there must have been a difcovery of the glory of God, as fhining in this plan of falvation, to all who cordially embrace it. Nothing else could induce them to do fo. If its enemies do not fee this, and therefore fet themselves against it; this confirms the different and honourable fentiments entertained by its friends; fo that even fuppofing (what we will never grant) that this view of the amiableness of the Divine Nature, as represented in the gospel, were not well founded; yet, doubtless it is the view of thofe "who count all "things but lofs for the excellency of the know"ledge of Chrift," and glory in nothing but "his cross."

The truth is, notwithstanding any cavilling objections that may be raised against it, many fa


#Phil. iii. 8.



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