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those, who can be moved by it. And yet this is as confidently and universally maintained by that Church, as if it had been said in Scripture, there is none other name given under Heaven, by which we can be saved, but only the name of the Pope of Rome...
Leaving then this Popish delusion, I shall proceed to state, what is the proper answer to the question in my text. ...
Now this will best be done by shewing, ist, What are the best means we can make use of to secure our salvation. And, 2dly, What are the genuine signs and marks, by which we may judge whether we are in a state of salvation, or not. For, when a man is both informed how he may be saved, and how he may know and be assured that he is actually in a state of salvation, he has then a full and satisfactory answer to the important enquiry before us.
As to the means necessary to the obtaining salvation, they are all compre
hended in the answer given by the Apostle to the terrified jailer:~" Believe in the “ Lord Jesus, and thou shalt be saved.” Be but a sincere Christian; have that faith in Christ, together with that holiness of life and manners, which the gospel requires of thee, and then thou canst not fail of salvation. For, when the Apostle says, “ Believe in Christ,” we are not to confine the expression to faith alone. Every one, who is the least acquainted with Scripture-language, knows, that it is. usual to express the whole of our duty by some leading and principal branch of it. Thus, as faith is here said to be the means of salvation, so is obedience to the laws of God, in the answer which our Lord gives to the young man's question in Matthew,-" Good Master, what good “ thing must I do, that I may have “ eternal life? And he said unto him, If " thou wilt enter into life, keep the com“ mandments.” The truth is, that neither of these two will of itself be able to save us. Since, as without faith it is impossible to please God, so, without holiness, no man shall see the Lord. And, as the
body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also. What there'fore God hath thus joined together, lét not man put asunder. ; . :
But to discuss this point-more particularly. - To believe on the Lord Jesus, is to believe him to be the eternal and onlybegotten Son of the Father, our God, and our Lord. That it is for his sake, and by his merits, that we obtain the remission of our sins, and the assurance of everlasting life and happiness. In short, to believe in the Lord Jesus, is to believe all the articles of the Christian faith, as they are contained in the Holy Scriptures; and by believing them is not meant the . barely giving our assent to the truth of them, as we do to other truflis of little or no importance, but the firmly embracing them with a devout and active faith. We must be thoroughly possessed with an awful sense both of the truth and in
portance of them ; so as to liave our wills · and affections, our desires and inclina
tions, our hearts, and ininds, and souls penetrated, subdued, and directed by
them. Such is the nature of that' faith of which the Scripture speaks, when it says, " That we are justified by faith ;" that “ the just shall live by faith ;" “ that “ it makes us the children of God," &c.-namely, that it is a faith, which produces all good works.
With regard to the other great branch of our duty, the keeping the commandments, we must never forget, that the obedience required of us is a steady and universal one, without any exception or reserve. We must not therefore pretend to select out of God's laws, which we will keep, and which we will break; or think to commuté, or compound, with our Maker for the breach of one law, by our punctual observance of all the rest; since we must know, that he who offendeth in one point is guilty of all. He that continueth in the practice of one wilful and presumptuous sin, is as liable to eternal damnation, though not to the same degree of punishment, as he that transgresseth the whole law. If therefore we would enter into life, we must have an · Vol. IV,
. equal respect to all God's commandments, not allowing ourselves in the practice of any known sin, but heartily repenting of, and thoroughly forsaking, all wicked courses, and daily proceeding in all virtue and godliness of living. In a word:--the whole business of securing our salvation is comprized under these two short rules: that we sincerely endeavour to get the best knowledge we can of our duty; and then be firmly resolved to live and act accordingly. If we obo serve the first rule, we must attend diligently to all the means of instruction, which our several abilities and circumstances in life afford us; such as a constant and careful study of the Holy Scriptures ; frequent meditations upon our spiritual concerns, daily communing with our own hearts, constant attendance upon the public service of the Church, and all holy ordinances; and above all, we must constantly address ourselves in private prayer to God, that he would be pleased by his good Spirit to guide and keep us in the way which leadeth unto life. And by the proper use of these means, even the