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their lives, to assure the world of the truth of Christ's resurrection. And cera tainly we cannot believe, that they would have done all this, ha, there not been some more powerful attractives in the truth and excellency of the doctrine they preached, than in the case, the honours, or emoluments of the present world.
Should it be said, that there may be found instances in history of strange and wild enthusiasts, who have suffered death for asserting very extravagant and absurd opinions ; i answer, That these opinions related always to mere matters of speculation, and were such as those who professed them firmly believed to be true, and therefore maintained them even at the expence of their lives : But, that a great number of men should unite in chearfully submitting to contempt and poverty, racks and tortures, and the most painful modes of dying, only for the sake of promulging what was known to themselves to be a falsehood, respecting a plain and simple matter of fact, is a thing which no history can parallel, and which is much harder to be believed than any mystery of our holy religion. In a word therefore, a matter of fact, which has only some of the proofs to support it, by which the resurrection of Christ is attested, may be true; but, one, which has them all, cannot be false.
en sy inediterhin Having now gone through what I first proposed to speak to, I shall conclude this discourse, with a short inference or two, which the Holy Scriptures point out to us, as clearly arising from the doctrine of Christ's resurrection from the dead.
1st Then; the resurrection of Christ from the dead should administer comfort to all those troubled souls, who groan under a sense of their sins, and the ap prehensions of God's wrath,, For, as he died for our sins, so did he rise again for our justification. As by his death we know that he suffered for sin, so by his resurrection we know, that the sins he suffered for were not his own. Had no man been a sinner, he had not died : and had he been a sinner, he had not risen
again. Bút dying for those sins which we commit, he arose from the dead to shew that he had discharged our debts, and made full satisfaction for our transgressions, and that we, believing in him, might obtain remission of our sins and the justification of our persons. " Who " then,” as the Apostle argues, “ shall **lay any thing to the charge of God's
4. elect? It is God that justifieth. Who 16. is he that condemneth? It is Christ " that died, yea rather, who is risen 6. again.” . :
2dly. As Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, so we should walk in newness of life. Sin is the death, and lust the grave of the soul, wherein 'it lies buried and entombed, wrapt'up in darkness, and devoured by those foul monsters, which it engenders within itself. We then, in imitation of Christ's resurrection, should, by the assistance of the Holy Spirit, quicken and revive our souls, raise them up to their primitive beauty and comeliness, and reinove all those lusts and desires, which
obstruct their re-entrance into a state of grace and holiness. For without this, be well assured, that we shall have no benefit in his death and passion. For he did not die to tolerate sin and wickedness, nor did he rise again to justify the un- . godły : But he died and rose again for the discharge of those sinners only, who repent of their sins, and obey his holy laws. So that the mercies of this day, and the benefit of that Sacrament, if we do not crucify all our lusts, kill and mortify our most beloved vices, will only serve to enhance our guilt and increase our condemnation. ,:.
ci 3dly. If Christ be risen from the dead, then may we be assured that we shall rise also for this is what he has promised us, and what he has promised he is able to perform; since he who could do what his greatest, can certainly do what is Icast: He who could give life to himself, to his own dead body, can likewise give it to the bodies of others : He who was loosed from the pains of death, because it was impossible that he should be holden of it,
will be able also to ransom us from the power of the graye: ;
And now, how should this consideration comfort us for the loss of our departed friends, that they are not perished, but only fallen asleep, in order to be again awakened with great glory and perfection. How again should the assurance of our own resurrection arm us against the fears of death ? How willing should it make us to lay down our heads in the dust ; since after the victory, which the great Çaptain of our salvation has obtained for us, we may venture to look death in the face with the exulting language of Scripture, * Rejoice not against
me, () mine enemy; when I fall, I s shall arise ;, when I sit in darkness, the
Lord shall be a light unto me; Though I moulder into dust, though after my skin worms. destroy this body, yet in my flesh shall I see God, in this flesh
and this very body, which is now * united to my soul.” The hour is coming, in which all that are in the graves shall hear the voice of the Son of Man,