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2. An apprehenfion of the mercy of God in Chrift, Joel ii. 12. 13. Turn ye even to me with all your heart, and with fafting, and with weeping, and with mourning. And rent your heart and not your garments, and turn unto the Lord your God: for he is gracious and merciful, flow to anger, and of great kindnefs, and repenteth him of the evil. The eye of faith is opened to fee and believe, that there is forgivenefs and mercy with him to the poor finner, that though the finner has deftroyed himself, yet in God is his help; there is hope in Ifrael concerning this thing. This can only be apprehended aright thro' Jefus Chrift, Zech. xii. 10. forecited. Not mercy for mercy's fake, but Chrift's fake: God was in Chrift reconciling the world unto himself, &c. This is neceffary. For without it one will either, (1.) Go on in fecret defpair, cafting off the thoughts of his cale, and making the best of it he can, Jer. ii. 25. Thou faidft, There is no hope. No : for I have loved frangers, and after them will I go. Or, (2.) Lie down in tormenting defpair, like Judas. Both which will fix fin in the heart, and bar out repent ance. And fince God is a confuming fire to the workers of iniquity, and without fatisfaction there can be no remiflion, there is no apprehending of mercy but through Christ.
o1V. I proceed to fhew the parts of repentance. Thefe are two; humiliation and converfion, Joel ii. 12.11g. above quoted.c ns1.Humiliation. The finner goes from God by the highway of pride and felf-conceit; but always comes back. the low way of humiliation. Grace pulls him down from the feat of the scorner, and lays him at the Lord's feet, 1 Pet. v. 6. Humble yourfelves under the mighty hand of God, that he may exall you in due time. It makes him like Benhadad's fervants, who came to the king of Ifrael girded VOL. III. N n
with fackcloth, and ropes on their heads, in the mot humiliating pofture. In it there is,
(1.) Sorrow for fin, a kindly forrow for the of fence and difhonour done to a holy gracious God, Zech. xii. 10. formerly cited, defacing his image, tranfgreffing his law, grieving his Spirit, and fur. nifhing fpear and nails to pierce a Saviour.
(2,) Shame, a holy fhame for fin, Rom. vi. 21. What fruit bad ye in those things whereof ye are now afbamed? They fee now their fpiritual nakedness, pollution, difappointed expectations from fin, and reproach difcovered, which fill the foul with blushing.
(3.) Self-loathing, Ezek. xxxvi. 31. Then shall ye remember your own evil ways, and your doings that were not good, and fball loath yourfelves in your own fight, for your iniquities, and for your abominations. They fee a fulness of fin in them, and the complicated aggrava tions of their fin, which make them to fmite on their breaft, as the publican did, Luke xviii. 13. as defer ving to be pierced through the heart it bred in; to finite on the thigh, as Ephraim did, Jer. xxxi. 19. as if he defired to break the legs that carried him out of God's way.
(4.) Penitent confeffion, Jer. iii. 13. accufing and condemning themselves.
2. Converfion or returning. Of which there are two parts.
1, Turning away from fin, 2 Tim. ii. 19. To repent of fin, and continue in the habitual practice of it, is a contradiction. They turn from it,
(1.) In heart, by a hearty and fincere hatred of it, Pfal. cxix. 104. I hate every falfe way. They hate it as an evil, the worst of evils, worfe than fuffer ings. They hate it fincerely as fin, univerfally and irreconcileably. They look on it as God does, as that abominable thing which he hates.
(3) In their life and converfation; they get clean hands.
 They turn from the grofs pollutions of the outward man, in the habitual practice of thefe, Pfal. xxiv. 3.4. Who fall afcend into the hill of the Lord? and who shall stand in his holy place? He that hath clean hands, and a pure heart; who hath not lift up his foul unto vanity, nor fworn deceitfully. A protane life is the mark of an impenitent ftate, Gal. v. 21. They which do fuch things fhall not inherit the kingdom of God. The true godly may make grofs flips; but if they be habitually grofs in their lives, there is no difference betwikt Chrift's fheep and the devil's goats. [2.] They are tender with refpect to fins of common infirmity, making confcience of words and actions, as Paul did, Acts xxiv. 16. Herein do exercife my felf, to have always a confcience void of offence toward God and toward men. What others count light, they will count great: even these are burdens to them, which they groan under, and as iron fetters they would fain be freed of, Rom. vii. 240 wretched man that I am! who fhall deliver me from the body of this death?
22dly, Turning to God. By faith man returns to God as a portion, by repentance as a Lord and Mafter, like a runaway fervant. And he returns,
1.To God himself. Sinners departing from God, diflike not only their service, but their Mafter, Lake xix. 14. But returning they are difpofed to love and like him as a Mafter.
(2.) To his duty to God, Acts ix. 6. to the practice of every known duty, and fpirituality in duty. This is new obedience, which a penitent turns to, [In full purpose, Pfal, cxix. 106, no more doubting whether to fall in with it or not, or delaying or purting it off any more. [2.] In fincere endeavours, Acts xxiv. 6.
A large and particular account of the nature, author, néceffity, &c. of repentance, may be feen in feveral difcourfes in a volume of the author's fermons first published in 1756, which were preached only two or three years before he delivered this difcourfe; which may partly account for the brevity of it.
Inf. 1. An impenitent heart is a fad fign of a loft ftate, Rom. ii. 5. While thou liveft fo, thou art far from God; and if thou die fo, thou art loft for ever,
2. That repentance which is not evangelical and true, is little worth. You must have more than Judas's repentance if ever you fee heaven.
3. To pretend to repentance, and never forfake fin, is vain.
4. To leave fin, and not take up the contrary duties, is not repentance.
5. Go to the Lord by faith for the grace of repentance.
Of Chrift's Ordinances in general,
IASIAH xii. 3.
Therefore with joy fhall ye draw water out of the wells of Salvation.
HIS fong looks to the days of the wherein Chrift having come and purchased falvation, the tidings of it are carried through the world in the gospel, and it is communicated to Jews and Gentiles through the means of grace, Here we have,
1. A benefit to be had in the church, water, i. e. gofpel-grace, the benefits of Chrift's redemption, as fuitable to needy, fainting fouls, as water to the thirsty. See John iv. 14. and vii. 37.
2. The way of its communication to poor finners. It is to be drawn out of the wells of falvation. Thefe are gofpel-ordinances, the wells in this valley of Baca for the life of fouls, and refreshment of fpiritual tra vellers. All the elect capable to draw, do draw out of them. This is the fenfe, whether the allufion be to the wells in the wilderness for the Ifraelites; or to the Jews fetching water out of the fpring of Si
loam at the feast of tabernacles in the night, with mirth and mufic, to the temple, and pouring it on st.. the altar. 10 mort.
The text furnishes this doctrine.
DOCT. The Lord's ordinances are the wells of falvation to the elect. Or, "The outward and ordinary means whereby Chrift communicateth to us "the benefits of redemption, are, his ordinances, especially the word, facraments, and prayer; all "which are made effectual to the elect for falvation."
Here I fhall fhew,
I. What is understood by a means of falvation.
III. What makes any ordinance a mean of grace. IV. To whom are the Lord's ordinances made effectual.
V. Whence their efficacy proceeds.
VI. Deduce an inference or two.
I. I am to fhew what is understood by a means of falvation. It is that by and through which the Lord Jefus doth by his Spirit convey grace and falvation into a foul. That is a mean or mids betwixt the Lord and the foul, which he ufes for communication of grace from himself to the foul, 1 Cor. i. 2 1. For after that in the wifdom of God the world by wif dom knew not God, it pleafed God by the foolifonefs of preaching to fave them that believe. Chap. iii. 5. Who then is Paul, and who is Apollos, but minifiers by whom We believed, even as the Lord gave to every man? The which may be used with expectation of good thereby. Thefe means are fome of them outward, fome inward; fome ordinary, others extraordinary.
II. I come now to fhew what these means of falvation are.
1. The inward means is faith, Heb. iv. 2 Unto us was the gospel preached, as well as unto them: but the word preached did not profit them, not being mixed