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mine, for they are my husband's, and he is mine, and I am his : fo may the believer, by virtue of his marriage.union with the Son of God, when he looks to heaven, he may lay, That this is my habitation; when he looks to the earth, he may say, This is my inns; when he looks to the angels, he may lay, These are my guards; when he looks round about him, he may say, All things are mine, for they belong to my blessed Husband, who is heir of all things, and I am heir of God through him ; his righteousness is mine to justify me, his grace is mine to sanctify me, his Spirit is mine to comfort me, his covenant is mine, for it was made with him, and with me through him, &c.

Sthly, Consider that thy blessed Husband, believer, he calls thee to lean upon him, he counsels and encourages thee to depend on him as thou comest out of the wilderness; he speaks to his spouse in a kindly way, saying, “ Cast thy burden upon the Lord, and he will fustain thee : Cast all your cares upon him, for he careth for you : Trust in him at all times, ye people; pour out your hearts before him,” &c. :

6thly, To encourage thy dependence on him in the wildera ness, consider his tender sympathy with thee under all thy ailments and infirmities. Thou art as dear to him as the very " apple of his eye,' and he has “ thee set as a seal on his heart and his arm," and he is “touched with the feeling of thy infirmities; he gathers the lambs with his arms, he carries them in his bosom, he gently leads those that are with young; and he giveth power unto the faint, and increaseth strength to them that have no might.”.

Lafly, If you do not lean on him, you will surely faint, and fag, and sit up in thy journey through the wilderness; but if thou lean and rest on him, “ thou shalt renew thy strength, and mount up with wings as eagles,” thou thalt run and not be weary, and walk and not faint, till thou come to Zion, with songs. Now, let all these confiderations encourage you to come up from the wilderness, leaning on your beloved.

III. To shut up this discourse, it may be asked, What ad. vice do you give us, in order to our living a life of faith, or our leaning on the beloved, as we came up from the wilderness? I answer in general, that there is a threefold object that must be kept in view, in order to our living by faith ; and every act of saving faith terminates upon all the three in their proper order. I. There is the promile. 2. There is Christ in the promise. 3. Upon God in Christ. True faith can want pone of them, and it is not a right faith that milles one of them. The promise is but a cypher, without Christ; and

Christ Christ is no Christ, without we take God up in him. Faith cannot fix upon Christ without the promise, and it cannot fix upon God but as he is in Christ : take away the promise, and you take away Christ; and take away Christ, and you take away God; for God is no God to a finner, but as he is in Christ. So then, of necessity these three grand objects of faith mult be taken in, and taken up, in order to a life of faith. And therefore I shall endeavour to fhew how faith is to act upon every one of them, by answering a threefold question. i. How faith is to act upon the promise of the word, which is the next and immediate object of faith? 2. How it is to be acted upon Chrift? 3. How it is to act upon a God in Christ?

Queft. r. What counsel or advice do you give us, in order to our living by faith upon the promise, which is the next of most immediate object of faith?

I answer, in order to your living by faith upon the promise, I give you these few advices following. :

In your reading of the scriptures, collect the promises, and gather them, pick them up; for “ by these do men live, and in all these is the life of your souls." By the great and precious promises” we are made.“ partakers of the divine nature," &c.'

Treasure them up in your minds, for they are the fuel of faith; and faith can as little act without the promise as fire can burn without fuel. And therefore let your minds be, like the pot in the ark, always full of the manna of the word. A promise ħid in the heart will do you service when you have neither accefs to read nor hear, &c.

Be frequently meditating on them, and rolling them like a sweet morsel under your tongue. “While I was mufing, the fire burned," says David. Faith, which works by love, is set a-work by serious meditation. The promises are the sweetest lines in Christ's love-letters to his spouse : there is majefty in the command, severity in the threatening; but love and mercy predominates in the promise,” & Co

Be frequently pleading the promise in prayer. The promise is God's bond, and God's bond is to be pursued in the court of grace, at the throne of grace : '" For these things I will be inquired of,” &c. This was David's way; « Remember the word upon which thou hast caused me to. hope,” &c.

Study to know and be persuaded, that the promise of God is a notable and excellent fecurity. And this appears from this consideration ; it is the word of God “who cannot lie;" &c. ; it is his registrate word, &c. it is his fealed word, &c.; he has given caution that his word shall be good, &c.; he gives the earneft of his word, the holy spirit of promise, &c.; he has added his oath to it, &c.; he has attested it by the three that bear record in heaven, &c.

I advise you to take up the promise as delivered and indorsed unto you: “ To you is the word of this salvation fent : The promise is unto you, and to your feed," &c. Heb. iv. 1." Let us fear, lest a promise being left us," &c.

Take up the promise as the genuine thought and picture of his heart, and that he really thinks as he speaks ; for unbelief is ready to suggest, that he says one thing, and thinks anos ther. Be aware of this, it is an imputation upon man to do so, and the use of words is lost if men do not think as they speak: far less are we to imagine that there is aoy. digngenuity in a God of truth ; no, no, his words corre. fpond to his mind, &c. ...,

Be persuaded that it is an easy thing for God to fulll his promise. There is no such distance between God's saying and working, as we are ready to imagine, Psal. xxxiii. 9. “ He {pake, and it was done, &c. Unbelief represents the promise as a thing difficult or hard to be performed; but it is quite otherwife : saying and working is all one with God; he commands" things that are not, as if they were."

In pleading the promise, beware of limitiag the holy One of Israel. To clear thisy take these two cautions. 1. Beware of being peremptory in expecting what is not absolutely promised, &c. 2. Do not always expect a present accomplilhment of the promise, but wait; for “the vision is for an appointed time," &c. “ He that believeth, does not make haste," &c.

When faith cannot get fist upon the conditional promise, then let it go to the abfolute, where the condition mentioned is ay to be found, &c.

Take care that, in a&ting faith upon the promise, you always remember the relation between Christ and the promise ; for all the promises are in him yea, and in him amen." Many break their necks upon the promise, by separating between Christ and the promise ; Christ is the Alpha and Omega of all the promises.

Quest. What is the relation between Christ and the promise .

Anfw. J. Christ is to be considered as the Grft heir of all the promises. Adam was the heir of the promise of life made in the first covenant, while he continued in his obedience ; but he lost his heirship to himself and his whole tribe by the fall: Christy as the second Adam, steps in, and fulfils the command ,

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of the first covenant, and undergoes its penalty in our room; and fo he becomes a new heir to the promise of eternal life, and of every thing pertaining to it. Now, our title to the promise comes in through him, through his obedience, and death, his everlasting righteousness; so that in believing the promise, we must at the fame time submit to his righteousness.

2. Christ is to be considered as the great blessing contained in all the promises ; hence called in a way of eminency, “ The mercy promised to the fathers.” What was the first promise in paradise, but Christ the feed of the woman? What was the promise to Abraham, but Christ, “in whom all the nations of the earth were to be blessed ?" And when he is promised, all is promised; for he is all in all. There is not a promise in the Bible, but has less or more of Christ in it. In a word, Christ himself, as contained in the word of faith, draws all the blessings of heaven and a long eternity after him... s Christ is to be considered as the glorious fountain and treafury, in whom all the promised blessings are hid. He it is in whom all the treasures of grace and glory are hid ; and it is out of his fulness that we receive all promised grace, &c. . · 4. Christ is the foundation and ground upon which they all stand. The believer and the promise stand upon the same foundation : “ Behold, I lay in Zion a foundation.” And all the promifes are founded upon him, upon his blood and satisfaction, without which never a promise had been given out by God to any of the children of men. And faith, in improving the promise, leans upon this foundation, stands upon this ground: just as a man leaning upon a staff, he sets the staff upon the ground, and so leans upon the staff: for except the ftaff lean to the ground, it will not support us; so unless the staff of the promise be set upon Christ as its proper ground, it will do us no service. And I fear a defect here is the ruin of many gospel-hearers : they pretend to lean to God's promise, but in the mean time they do not set the staff of the promise upon Christ, and his fatisfaction and intercession; and so they and their faith fall into hell together in the end. Thus I have given you some advices, in order to your improvement of the promises in a way of believing..

Quest. 2. How is faith to act upon Christ in the promise, or by virtue of the promise? for, as I told you, all the promises are in him, and he is in all the promises... - For answer to this, I would have you know, that in every promise of the word, Christ is represented as cloathed or vested with one or other of his mediatory offices of prophet, priest, or king; he is n11ade of God unto its wisdom as a propher, righte

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ousness as a priest, and fanctification as a king; and in one or other of these offices he gives out all the sure mercies of David, all the blessings of a covenant of grace. And therefore, in order to your living by faith upon Christ in the.promise, take the few following advices.

1. Study to be well acquainted with the person and offices of Christ. Study, I say, to be well acquainted with the dignity and excellency of his perfon as he is “ Emmanuel, the Word made flesh, God manifested in the flesh;" for upon the excellency of his person depends the validity of the whole of his undertaking as our Redeemer. Without this be kepe in the soul's view, it cannot but wander in the dark, without knowing where to fix; we will be fair to mistake a shadow instead of a substance, without we have becoming views of the excellency of a Redeemer's person. But then, I say, we mult study to know him, not only in his perion, but in his offices wherewith he is vefted; for faith, or truit, has a respect unto a person vested with some office or other. As when you employ an advocate, you trust the person as cloathed with that office; when you employ a physician, you trust the person as cloathed with that office; and when you employ a minister, you trust his person as cloathed with the niinisterial office ; fo here when we employ Christ, or lean upon him, we trust him as cloathed with his prophetical, priestly, or kingly offices. And therefore, in order to the life of faith, study to be well acquainted with the person of Christ as vested with these offices, and what it is that we are to expect from him as cloathed with these offices.

Queft. What has faith to expect from Christ as a prophet?

Anfw. As a prophet he reveals his Father's will by his word externally, and by his Spirit internally; and therefore faith eyes him for instruction in the things of God, &c. As a prophet, “ he received gifts for men, and gives apostles, prophets, pastors, and teachers ;” and therefore faith looks to him for “ pastors according to his heart," and for his blessing upon the word and ordinances dispensed by them, for the edification of his body, &c. As a prophet, he received the Spirit, and all his influences; and therefore faith looks to him in this office for the Spirit to “ lead into all truth," to: rend the vail, dispel darkness, and to lead in the way we know not. .

Queft. What has faith to expect from Christ, as a priest ?

Answ. As a priest, he satisfies justice, redeems from the curle of the law, from hell and wrath. As a priest, he " brings in everlasting righteousness, and makes intercellion for

VOL. II.

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