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and unsullied with the lustings of the · flesh against the spirit, by the titles of
grace and of glory; which yet must not
On the other hand, those who bring forth the fruits of the Spirit, as there are of a nature directly contrary to the other, so they have a contrary issue. He does not say directly, that such as do these things shall enter into the kingdom of
heaven; but he says what is equivalent to it, and what moreover carries the strongest assurance that they shall not, nay, and that they cannot enter into condemnation; for he says, there is no law against them. It is the same cafe which this fame apostle put, Rom. viii. 1. “There is “therefore now no condemnation to those " who are in Christ Jesus, who walk not " after the flesh, but after the Spirit.”
What he adds there, “that the law of the 16 Spirit of life in Christ Jesus, had made “them free from the law of fin and death," explains what he says here, verf. 18. that those who are led by the Spirit, are not under the law. They who are in Chrift, are dead to the law, through the body of Christ, and raised up in him to a new station, and have a new principle of action; they are directed and led by the Spirit. And when it appears, by the fruits of the Spirit, that they are so, the law has nothing to say to them; they are, as we may fay, out of its jurisdiction, and are under another government; where the measures of judgement, both in justifying and condemning, are altogether different; "He who believeth and is baptized, shall
be saved; and he who believeth not, s shall be damned.”. The law had its course on Jesus Christ, and in him, on all who are made 'conformable unto him in his death, and has no more to say to them. They are left dead in the hands of their great creator, and are quickened by his sovereignly free grace: for surely no body will pretend, that God was under any the least obligation to employ his creating power to raise any of the apostate race; and if he was bound to none, he may quicken whom he will; and none can complain of being injured, when he leaves them where they have chosen to be.
But this same sovereignty of grace, i where-ever it is exerted, is so far from inferring the conclusion which fome, who. reckon themselves very wise, very ignorantly fasten upon it, viz. that it encourages. men to continue in fin, and neglect the study of holiness; that it is absolutely impossible for those who have tasted of the grace of God in truth to draw any such, conclusion from it. It is true, the external doctrine of grace may be, and has been, turned into wantonness; but that is only grace in the theory : but where-ever it is VOL. III. 3 G
received, and entertained in the heart, it teaches men effectually to deny ungodliness and wordly lusts. The Apostle gives the reason, Rom. vi. 2.-11. and the famę truth he inculcates here', verf. 24. they that are Christ's, have crucified the flesh, with the lufts and affections of it. He does not say barely, they have crucified the affections and lufts, but the flesh itself, “ in which no good thing can dwell,” the old man whose deeds these are: and most certainly they are the deeds of the man, the child of Adam; and in these he will employ himself until he is born again, and created anew in Christ Jesus unto good works, by the Spirit of Christ living and abiding in him. It is by this Spirit he lives; and no confequence can be stronger than that which we have, verf. 25. If we live in or by the Spirit, let us also walk in or by the Spirit. I put it thus, because the Greek particle is ufed for both, and often rendered by our translators either iż or by, as they judged the place and matter required.
After what has been said upon this subject, it might be justly deemed superfluous to take any notice of a set of men who make no difference between the fpiritual, and the rational or sensual world.
They seem to imagine, that man is such a perfect being, and endued with something so near felf-sufficiency, that he has no need of the Spirit of Christ, or even of Christ himself; for he and his Spirit are but one. When the Apostle therefore says, Christians, live in the Spirit, and walk in the Spirit, they think he means no more by the
Spirit but the rational soul, the spiritual -:. part of the man; in the strength of which E they seem to have no doubt but that they
fhall regulate all their affections with such e exactness, that God himself'must be plea
fed with them, and reward them more liberally, than Adam, in the utmost purity of his innocence; had any reason to expect. We know the Christian “ can do all “ things, through Christ strengthening is him.” But let these men seriously try what they can do without him, and they will soon find themselves fo strongly bound under sin and death, that nothing but the hand of omnipotence can loose them; or in the Apostle's words; that the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus, and that alone, can make thein free from the law of fin and death: they will feel, on the first serious attempt, what 3 G 2