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THE SECOND LONDON CONFESSION OF FAITH

PUT FORTH BY THE ELDERS AND BRETHREN OF MANY

CONGREGATIONS Of Christians (baptised upon Profession of their Faith) in London and the Country. LONDON: Printed in the Year, 1677. First Edition

{This information is taken from the AGES Electronic Library and placed here for educational and edification purposes only}
 

TABLE OF CONTENTS

1. Of the Holy Scriptures

2. Of God and the Holy Trinity

3. Of God’s Decrees

4. Of Creation

5. Of Divine Providence

6. Of the Fall of Man, Sin, the Punishment thereof

7. Of God’s Covenant

8. Of Christ the Mediator

9. Of Free-Will

10. Of Effectual Calling

11. Of Justification

12. Of Adoption

13. Of Sanctification

14. Of Saving Faith

15. Of Repentance unto Life and Salvation

16. Of Good Works

17. Of Perseverance of the Saints

18. Of the Assurance of Grace and Salvation
 

TO THE JUDICIOUS AND IMPARTIAL READER

 

Courteous Reader, — It is now many years since divers of us (with other sober

Christians then living and walking in the way of the Lord that we professe) did

conceive our selves to be under a necessity of Publishing a Confession of our

Faith, for the information, and satisfaction of those, that did not thoroughly

understand what our principles were, or had entertained prejudices against our

Profession, by reason of the strange representation of them, by some men of

note, who had taken very wrong measures, and accordingly led others into

misapprehensions, of us, and them: and this was first put forth about the year,

1643, in the name of seven Congregations then gathered in London; since

which time, diverse impressions thereof have been dispersed abroad, and our

end proposed, in good measure answered, inasmuch as many (and some of

those men eminent, both for piety and learning) were thereby satisfied, that we

were no way guilty of those Heterodoxies and fundamental errors, which had

too frequently been charged upon us without ground, or occasion given on our

part. And forasmuch as that Confession is not now commonly to be had; and

also that many others have since embraced the same truth which is owned

therein; it was judged necessary by us to joyn together in giving a testimony to

the world; of our firm adhering to those wholesome Principles, by the

publication of this which is now in your hand.

And forasmuch as our method, and manner of expressing our sentiments in this

doth vary from the former (although the substance of the matter is the same)

we shall freely impart to you the reason and occasion thereof. One thing that

greatly prevailed with us to undertake this work, was (not only to give a full

account of ourselves to those Christians that differ from us about the subject of

baptism, but also) the profit that might from thence arise unto those that have

any account of our labours, in their instruction and establishment in the great

truths of the gospel; in the clear understanding and steady belief of which our

comfortable walking with God, and fruitfulness before him in all our ways is

most nearly concerned. And therefore we did conclude it necessary to express

our-selves the more fully and distinctly, and also to fix on such a method as

might be most comprehensive of those things which we designed to ex-plain

our sense and belief of; and finding no defect in this regard in that fixed on by

the Assembly, and after them by those of the Congregational way, we did

readily conclude it best to retain the same order in our present Confession. And

also when we observed that those last mentioned did, in their Confession (for

reasons which seemed of weight both to themselves and others), choose not

only to ex-press their mind in words concurrent with the former in sense,

concerning all those articles wherein they were agreed, but also for the most

part without any variation of the terms, we did in like manner conclude it best

to follow their example, in making use of the very same words with them both,

in those articles (which are very many) wherein our faith and doctrine is the

same with theirs. And this we did, the more abundantly to manifest our consent

with both, in all the fundamental articles of the Christian religion, as also with

many others whose orthodox confessions have been published to the World, on

the behalf of the protestants in diverse nations and cities; and also to convince

all that we have no itch to clog religion with new words, but to readily

acquiesce in that form of sound words which hath been, in consent with the

holy scriptures, used by others before us; hereby declaring before God, angels,

and men, our hearty agreement with them, in that wholesome protestant

doctrine, which, with so clear evidence of scriptures they have asserted. Some

things, indeed, are in some places added, some terms omitted, and some few

changed; but these alterations are of that nature, as that we need not doubt any

charge or suspicion of unsoundness in the faith, from any of our brethren upon

the ac-count of them.

In those things wherein we differ from others, we have expressed ourselves

with all candour and plainness, that none might entertain Jealousy of aught

secretly lodged in our breasts, that we would not the world should be

acquainted with; yet we hope we have also observed those rules of modesty

and humility as will render our freedom in this respect inoffensive, even to

those whose sentiments are different from ours.

We have also taken care to affix texts of scripture in the margin, for the

confirmation of each article in our Confession; in which work we have

studiously endeavored to select such as are most clear and pertinent for the

proof of what is asserted by us; and our earnest desire is, that all into whose

hands this may come would follow that (never enough commended) example

of the noble Bereans, who searched the scriptures daily that they might find

out whether the things preached to them were so or not.

There is one thing more which we sincerely profess, and earnestly de-sire

credence in, viz., that contention is most remote from our design in all that we

have done in this matter; and we hope the liberty of an ingenuous unfolding

our principles and opening our hearts unto our brethren,. with the scripturegrounds

on which our faith and practice leans, will by none of them be either

denied to us, or taken ill from us. Our whole design is accomplished if we may

obtain that justice, as to be measured in our principles and practice and the

judgement of both by others, according to what we have now published; which

the Lord (whose eyes are as a flame of fire) knoweth to be the doctrine, which

with our hearts we most firmly believe, and sincerely indeavour to conform

our lives to. And oh that other contentions being laid asleep, the only care and

contention of all upon whom the name of our blessed Redeemer is called,

might for the future be, to walk humbly with their God, and in the exercise of

all Love and Meekness towards each other, to perfect holyness in the fear of

the Lord, each one endeavouring to have his conversation such as becometh

the Gospel; and also, suitable to his place and capacity, vigorously to promote

in others the practice of true Religion and undefiled in the sight of God and our

Father. And that in this backsliding day, we might not spend our breath in

fruitless complaints of the evils of others; but may every one begin at home, to

reform in the first place our own hearts, and wayes; and then to quicken all that

we may have influence upon, to the same work; that if the will of God were so,

none might deceive themselves, by resting in, and trusting to, a form of

Godliness, without the power of it, and inward experience of the efficacy of

those truths that are professed by them.

And verily there is one spring and cause of the decay of Religion in our day,

which we cannot but touch up-on, and earnestly urge a redress of; and that is

the neglect of the worship of God in Families, by those to whom the charge

and conduct of them is committed. May not the grosse ignorance, and

instability of many; with the prophaneness of others, be justly charged upon

their Parents and Masters, who have not trained them up in the way wherein

they ought to walk when they were young; but have neglected those frequent

and solemn commands which the Lord hath laid upon them so to catechise, and

instruct them, that their tender years might be seasoned with the knowledge of

the truth of God as revealed in the Scriptures; and also by their own omission

of Prayer, and other duties of Religion in their families, together with the ill

example of their loose conversation, have inured them first to a neglect, and

then contempt of all Piety and Religion? we know this will not excuse the

blindness, or wickedness of any; but certainly it will fall heavy upon those that

have been thus the occasion thereof; they indeed dye in their sins; but will not

their blood be required of those under whose care they were, who yet

permitted them to go on without warning, yea led them into the paths of

destruction? and will not the diligence of Christians with respect to the

discharge of these duties, in ages past, rise up in judgment against, and

condemn many of those who would be esteemed such now?

We shall conclude with our earnest prayer, that the God of all grace, will pour

out those measures of his holy Spirit upon us, that the profession of truth may

be accompanyed with the sound belief, and diligent practise of it by us; that his

name may in all things be glorified, through Jesus Christ our Lord, Amen.
 

CHAPTER 1. — OF THE HOLY SCRIPTURES.

1. THE Holy Scripture is the only sufficient, certain, and infallible (<550315>2

Timothy 3:15, 16, 17. <230820>Isaiah 8:20. <421629>Luke 16:29, 31. <490220>Ephesians 2:20.)

rule of all saving Knowledge, Faith, and Obedience; Although the (<450119>Romans

1:19, 20, 21 etc. ch. 2:14, 15. <191901>Psalm 19:1, 2, 3.) light of Nature, and the

works of Creation and Providence do so far manifest the goodness, wisdom

and power of God, as to leave men unexcusable; yet are they not sufficient to

give that knowledge [page] of God and His will, which is necessary unto

Salvation (<580101>Hebrews 1:1.) Therefore it pleased the Lord at sundry times, and

in divers manners, to reveal himself, and to declare that His will unto his

Church; and afterward for the better preserving, and propagating of the Truth,

and for the more sure Establishment and Comfort of the Church against the

corruption of the flesh, and the malice of Satan, and of the World, to commit

the same wholly unto (<202219>Proverbs 22:19, 20, 21. Romans 15 4; <610119>2 Peter

1:19, 20.) writing; which maketh the Holy Scriptures to be most necessary,

those former ways of Gods revealing his will unto his people being now

ceased.

2. Under the Name of Holy Scripture, or the Word of God written; are now

contained all the Books of the Old and New Testament, which are these,

OF THE OLD TESTAMENT.

Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy, Joshua, Judges, Ruth, 1

Samuel, 2 Samuel, Kings, 2 Kings, 1 Chronicles, 2 Chronicles, Ezra,

Nehemiah, Esther, Job, Psalms, Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, The Song of Songs,

Isaiah, Jeremiah, Lamentations, Ezekiel, Daniel, Hosea, Joel, Amos, Obadiah,

Jonah, Micah, Nahum, Habakkuk, Zephaniah, Haggai, Zechariah, Malachi.

OF THE NEW TESTAMENT.

Matthew, Mark, Luke, John, The Acts of the Apostles, Pauls Epistle to the

Romans, 1 Corinthians, 2 Corinthians, Galatians, Ephesians, Philippians,

Colossians, Thessalonians, 2 Thessalonians, 1 Timothy, 2 Timothy, to Titus, to

Philemon, the Epistle to the Hebrews, the Epistle of James, The first and

second Epistles of Peter, The first, second, and third Epistles of John, the

Epistle of Jude, the Revelation. All which are given by the (<550316>2 Timothy

3:16.) inspiration of God, to be the rule of Faith and Life.

3. The Books commonly called Apochypha not being of (<422427>Luke 24:27, 44.

<450302>Romans 3:2.) Divine inspiration, are no part of the Canon (or rule) of the

Scripture, and therefore are of no authority to the Church of God, nor to be any

otherwise approved or made use of, then other humane writings.

4. The Authority of the Holy Scripture for which it ought to be believed

dependeth not upon the testimony of any man, or Church; but wholly upon

(<610119>2 Peter 1:19, 20, 21; <550316>2 Timothy 3:16; <530213>2 Thessalonians 2:13; <620519>1

John 5:19.) God (who is truth it self) the Author there-of; therefore it is to be

received, because it is the Word of God.

5. We may be moved and induced by the testimony of the Church of God, to

an high and reverent esteem of the Holy Scriptures; and the heavenliness of the

matter, the efficacy of the Doctrine, and the Majesty of the stile, the consent of

all the parts, the scope of the whole (which is to give all glory to God) the full

discovery it makes of the only way of mans salvation, and many other

incomparable Excellencies, and intire perfections thereof, are arguments

whereby it doth abundantly evidence it self to be the Word of God; yet,

notwithstanding; our (<431613>John 16:13, 14; <460210>1 Corinthians 2:10 11, 12. <620202>1

John 2:2, 20, 27.) full perswasion, and assurance of the infallible truth, and

divine authority thereof, is from the inward work of the Holy Spirit, bearing

witness by and with the Word in our Hearts.

6. The whole Councel of God concerning all things (<550315>2 Timothy 3:15,

16:17. <480108>Galatians 1:8, 9.) necessary for his own Glory, Mans Salvation,

Faith and Life, is either expressely set down or necessarily contained in the

Holy Scripture; unto which nothing at any time is to be added, whether by new

Revelation of the Spirit, or traditions of men.

Nevertheless we acknowledge the (<430645>John 6:45; <460209>1 Corinthians 2:9, 10, 11,

12.) inward illumination of the Spirit of God, to be necessary for the saving

understanding of such things as are revealed in the Word. and that there are

some circumstances concerning the worship of God, and government of the

Church common to humane actions and societies; which are to be (<461113>1

Corinthians 11:13:14. & ch. 14:26 & 40.) ordered by the light of nature, and

Christian prudence ac-cording to the general rules of the Word, which are

always to be observed.

7. All things in Scripture are not alike (<610316>2 Peter 3:16.) plain in themselves,

nor alike clear unto all; yet those things which are necessary to be known,

believed, and observed for Salvation, are so (<191907>Psalm 19:7. and. 119.) clearly

propounded, and opened in some place of Scripture or other, that not only the

learned, but the unlearned, in a due use of ordinary means, may attain to a

sufficient understanding of them.

8. The Old Testament in (<450302>Romans 3:2.) Hebrew, (which was the Native

language of the people of God of old) and the New Testament in Greek,

(which at the time of the writing of it was most generally known to the Nations

being immediately inspired by God, and by his singular care and Providence

kept pure in all Ages, are therefore (<230820>Isaiah 8:20.) authentical; so as in all

controversies of Religion, the Church is finally to appeal unto them. (<441515>Acts

15:15.) But be-cause these original tongues are not known to all the people of

God, who have a right unto, and interest in the scriptures, and are commanded

in the fear of God to read (<430303>John 3:39.) and search them, there-fore they are

to be translated into the vulgar language of every Nation, unto which they

(<461406>1 Corinthians 14:6, 9, 11, 12, 24, 28.) come, that the Word of God

dwelling (<510316>Colossians 3:16.) plentifully in all, they may worship him in an

acceptable manner, and through patience and comfort of the Scriptures may

have hope.

9. The infallible rule of interpretation of Scripture is the (<610120>2 Peter 1:20, 21.

<441515>Acts 15:15, 16.) Scripture it self: And therefore when there is a question

about the true and full sense of any Scripture (which is not manifold but one) it

must be searched by other places that speak more clearly.

10. The supream judge by which all controversies of Religion are to be

determined, and all Decrees of Councels, opinions of antient Writers,

Doctrines of men, and private Spirits, are to be examined, and in whose

sentence we are to rest, can be no other but the Holy Scripture delivered by the

Spirit, into which (<402229>Matthew 22:29, 31. <490220>Ephesians 2:20. Acts 28.23.)

Scripture so delivered, our faith is finally resolved.
 

CHAPTER 2. — OF GOD AND OF THE HOLY TRINITY.

 

1. THE Lord our God is but (<460804>1 Corinthians 8:4, 6. Deuteronomy 6.4.) one

only living, and true God; whose (<241010>Jeremiah 10:10. <234812>Isaiah 48:12.)

subsistence is in and of himself, (<020314>Exodus 3:14.) infinite in being, and

perfection, whose Essence cannot be comprehended by any but himself;

(<430424>John 4:24.) a most pure spirit, (<540117>1 Timothy 1:17. <050415>Deuteronomy 4:15,

16.) invisible, without body, parts, or passions, who only hath immortality,

dwelling in the light, which no man can approach unto, who is (<390306>Malachi

3:6.) immutable, (<110827>1 Kings 8:27. <242323>Jeremiah 23:23.) immense, (<199002>Psalm

90:2.) eternal, incomprehensible, (<011701>Genesis 17:1.) Almighty, every way

infinite, (<230603>Isaiah 6:3.) most holy, most wise, most free, most absolute,

(<191603>Psalm 16:3. <234610>Isaiah 46:10.) working all things according to the councel

of his own immutable, and most righteous will, (<201604>Proverbs 16:4. <451136>Romans

11:36.) for his own glory, most loving, gracious, merciful, long-suffering,

abundant in goodness and truth, forgiving iniquity, transgression and sin,

(<023406>Exodus 34:6, 7. <581106>Hebrews 11:6.) the rewarder of them that diligently

seek him, and withal most just, (<160932>Nehemiah 9:32, 33.) and terrible in his

judgments, (<190505>Psalm 5:5, 6.) hating all sin, and who will by no means clear

the (<023407>Exodus 34:7. <340102>Nahum 1:2, 3.) guilty.

2. God having all (<430526>John 5:26.) life, (<19E813>Psalm 148:13.) glory, (<19B968>Psalm

119:68.) goodness, blessedness, in and of himself: is alone in, and unto himself

all-sufficient, not (<182202>Job 22:2, 3.) standing in need of any Creature which he

hath made, nor deriving any glory from them, but onely manifesting his own

glory in, by, unto, and upon them, he is the alone fountain of all Being,

(<451134>Romans 11:34, 35, 36.) of whom, through whom, and to whom are all

things, and he hath most soveraign (<270425>Daniel 4:25 & 5:34, 35.) dominion

over all creatures, to do by them, for them, and upon them, whatsoever himself

pleaseth; in his sight (<580413>Hebrews 4:13.) all things are open and manifest, his

knowledge is (<261105>Ezekiel 11:5. <441518>Acts 15:18.) infinite, infallible, and

independant upon the Creature, so as nothing is to him contingent, or

uncertain; he is most holy in all his Councels, in (<19E517>Psalm 145:17.) all his

Works, and in all his Commands; to him is due (<660512>Revelation 5:12, 13, 14.)

from Angels and men, whatsoever worship, service, or obedience as Creatures

they owe unto the Creator, and whatever he is further pleased to require of

them.

3. In this divine and infinite Being there are three subsistences, (<620507>1 John 5:7.

<402819>Matthew 28:19; <471314>2 Corinthians 13:14.) the Father the Word (or Son) and

Holy Spirit, of one substance, power, and Eternity, each having the whole

Divine Essence, (<020314>Exodus 3:14. <431411>John 14:11; <460806>1 Corinthians 8:6.) yet

the Essence undivided, the Father is of none neither begotten nor proceeding,

the Son is Eternally begotten of the Father, the holy Spirit (<430114>John 1:14, 18.

<181526>Job 15:26. <480406>Galatians 4:6.) proceeding from the Father and the Son, all

infinite, without beginning, therefore but one God, who is not to be divided in

nature and Being; but distinguished by several peculiar, relative properties, and

personal relations; which doctrine of the Trinity is the foundation of all our

Communion with God, and comfortable dependence on him.
 

CHAPTER 3. — OF GODS DECREE.

1. GOD hath (<234610>Isaiah 46:10. <490111>Ephesians 1:11. <580617>Hebrews 6:17.

<450915>Romans 9:15, 18.) Decreed in himself from all Eternity, by the most wise

and holy Councel of his own will, freely and unchangeably, all things

whatsoever comes to passe; yet so as thereby is God neither the author of sin,

(<590115>James 1:15, 17. <430105>John 1:5.) nor hath fellowship with any therin, nor is

violence offered to the will of the Creature, nor yet is the liberty, or

contingency of second causes taken away, but rather (<440427>Acts 4:27, 28, <181911>Job

19:11.) established, in which appears his wisdom in disposing all things, and

power, and faithfulness (<042319>Numbers 23:19. Ephesians 1, 3, 4, 5.) in

accomplishing his Decree.

2. Although God knoweth whatsoever may, or can come to passe upon all

(<441518>Acts 15:18.) supposed conditions; yet hath he not Decreed anything,

(<450911>Romans 9:11, 13, 16, 18.) because he foresaw it as future, or as that which

would come to pass upon such conditions.

3. By the decree of God, for the manifestation of his glory (<540521>1 Timothy 5:21.

<402541>Matthew 25:41.) some men and Angels are predestinated, or fore-ordained

to Eternal Life, through Jesus Christ, to the (<490105>Ephesians 1:5, 6.) praise of his

glorious grace; others being left to act in their sin to their (<450922>Romans 9:22,

23, <650104>Jude 1:4.) just condemnation, to the praise of his glorious justice:

4. These Angels and Men thus predestinated, and fore-ordained, are

particularly, and unchangeably designed, and their (<550219>2 Timothy 2:19.

<431318>John 13:18.) number so certain, and definite, that it can-not be either

increased, or diminished.

5. Those of mankind that are predestinated to life, God, before the foundation

of the world was laid, according to his eternal and immutable purpose, and the

secret Councel and good pleasure of his will, hath chosen in Christ unto

everlasting glory, out of his meer free grace and love; (<450913>Romans 9:13, 16.

<490106>Ephesians 1:6, 12.) without any other thing in the creature as a condition or

cause moving him thereunto.

6. As God hath appointed the Elect unto glory, so he hath by the eternal and

most free purpose of his will, fore-ordained (<600102>1 Peter 1:2. <530213>2

Thessalonians 2:13.) all the means thereunto, wherefore they who are elected,

being fain in Adam, (<520509>1 Thessalonians 5:9, 10) are redeemed by Christ, are

effectually (<450830>Romans 8:30; <530213>2 Thessalonians 2:13.) called unto faith in

Christ, by his spirit working in due season, are justifyed, adopted, sanctified,

and kept by his power through faith (<600105>1 Peter 1:5.) unto salvation; neither

are any other redeemed by Christ, or effectually called, justified, adopted,

sanctified, and saved, but the Elect (<431026>John 10:26. <431709>John 17:9. <430664>John

6:64.) only.

7. The Doctrine of this high mystery of predestination, is to be handled with

special prudence, and care; that men attending the will of God revealed in his

word, and yielding obedience thereunto, may from the certainty of their

effectual vocation, be assured of their (<520104>1 Thessalonians 1:4, 5; <610110>2 Peter

1:10) eternal election; so shall this doctrine afford matter (<490106>Ephesians 1:6.

<451133>Romans 11:33.) of praise, reverence, and admiration of God, and

(<451105>Romans 11:5, 6.) of humility, diligence, and abundant (<421020>Luke 10:20.)

consolation, to all that sincerely obey the Gospel.
 

CHAPTER 4. — OF CREATION.

1. IN the beginning it pleased God the Father, (<430102>John 1:2, 3. <580102>Hebrews

1:2. <182613>Job 26:13.) Son, and Holy Spirit, for the manifestation of the glory

of(<450120>Romans 1:20) his eternal power, wisdom, and goodness, to Create or

make the world, and all things therein, (<510116>Colossians 1:16. <010201>Genesis 2:1,

2.) whether visible or in-visible, in the space of six days, and all very good.

2. After God had made all other Creatures, he Created (<010127>Genesis 1:27.) man,

male and female, with (<010207>Genesis 2:7.) reasonable and immortal souls,

rendring them fit unto that life to God, for which they were Created;

being(<210729>Ecclesiastes 7:29.) made after the image of God, in knowledge,

righteousness, and true holyness; having the Law of God (<450214>Romans 2:14,

15.) written in their hearts, and power to fulfill it; and yet under a possibility of

transgressing, being left to the liberty of their own will, which was(<010306>Genesis

3:6.) subject to change.

3. Besides the Law written in their hearts, they received (<010617>Genesis 6:17. &

ch. 3:8, 9, 10.) a command not to eat of the tree of knowledge of good and evil;

which whilst they kept, they were happy in their Communion with God, and

had dominion (<010126>Genesis 1:26, 28.) over the Creatures.
 

CHAPTER 5. — OF DIVINE PROVIDENCE.

1. GOD, the good Creator of all things, in his infinite power, and wisdom, doth

(<580103>Hebrews 1:3. <183811>Job 38:11. <234610>Isaiah 46:10, 11. <19D506>Psalm 135:6.)

uphold, direct, dispose, and govern all Creatures, and things, from the greatest

even to the (<401029>Matthew 10:29, 30, 31.) least, by his most wise and holy

providence, to the end for the which they were Created; according unto his

infallible foreknowledge, and the free and immutable Councel of his

(<490111>Ephesians 1:11.) own will; to the praise of the glory of his wisdom, power,

justice, infinite goodness and mercy.

2. Although in relation to the foreknowledge and Decree of God, the first

cause, all things come to pass (<440223>Acts 2:23.) immutably and infallibly; so that

there is not any thing, be-falls any(<201633>Proverbs 16:33.) by chance, or without

his Providence; yet by the same Providence he ordereth them to fall out,

according to the nature of second causes, either (<010822>Genesis 8:22.) necessarily,

freely, or contingently.

3. God in his ordinary Providence (<442731>Acts 27:31, 44. <235510>Isaiah 55:10, 11.)

maketh use of means; yet is free (<280107>Hosea 1:7.) to work, without,(<450419>Romans

4:19, 20, 21.) above, and (<270327>Daniel 3:27.) against them at his pleasure.

4. The Almighty power, unsearchable wisdom, and infinite goodness of God,

so far manifest themselves in his Providence, that his determinate Councel

(<451132>Romans 11:32, 33, 34:<102401>2 Samuel 24:1. <132101>1 Chronicles 21:1.)

extendeth it self even to the first fall, and all other sinful actions both of

Angels, and Men; (and that not by a bare permission) which also he most

wisely and powerfully (<121928>2 Kings 19:28. <197610>Psalm 76:10.) boundeth, and

otherwise ordereth, and governeth, in a manifold dispensation to his most holy

(<015020>Genesis 50:20. <231006>Isaiah 10:6, 7, 12.) ends: yet so, as the sinfulness of

their acts proceedeth only from the Creatures, and not from God; who being

most holy and righteous, neither is nor can be, the author or (<195021>Psalm 50:21;

<620216>1 John 2:16.) approver of sin.

5. The most wise, righteous, and gracious God, doth oftentimes, leave for a

season his own children to manifold temptations, and the corruptions of their

own heart, to chastise them for their former sins, or to discover unto them the

hid-den strength of corruption, and deceitfulness of their hearts,(<143225>2

Chronicles 32:25, 26, 31:<102401>2 Samuel 24:1. <471207>2 Corinthians 12:7, 8, 9.) that

they may be humbled; and to raise them to a more close, and constant

dependence for their sup-port, upon himself; and to make them more watchful

against all future occasions of sin, and for other just and holy ends.

So that whatsoever befalls any of his elect is by his appointment, for his

glory,(<450828>Romans 8:28.) and their good.

6. As for those wicked and ungodly men, whom God as a righteous judge, for

former sin doth (<450124>Romans 1:24, 26, 28, ch. 11:7, 8.) blind and harden; from

them he not only withholdeth his (<052904>Deuteronomy 29:4.) Grace, whereby

they might have been inlightened in their under-standing, and wrought upon in

their hearts: But sometimes also withdraweth (<401312>Matthew 13:12.) the gifts

which they had, and exposeth them to such (<050230>Deuteronomy 2:30; <120812>2

Kings 8:12, 13.) objects as their corruptions makes occasion of sin; and withal

(<198111>Psalm 81:11, 12; <530210>2 Thessalonians 2:10, 11, 12.) gives them over to

their own lusts, the temptations of the world, and the power of Satan, whereby

it comes to pass, that they (<020815>Exodus 8:15, 32. <230609>Isaiah 6:9, 10; <600207>1 Peter

2:7, 8.) harden themselves, even under those means which God useth for the

softening of others.

7. As the Providence of God doth in general reach to all Creatures, so after a

most special manner manner it taketh care of his (<540410>1 Timothy 4:10.

<300908>Amos 9:8, 9. <234303>Isaiah 43:3, 4, 5.) Church, and disposeth of all things to

the good thereof.
 

CHAPTER 6. — OF THE FALL OF MAN, OF SIN, AND

OF THE PUNISHMENT THEREOF.

1. Although God created Man upright, and perfect, and gave him a righteous

law, which had been unto life had he kept it,(<010216>Genesis 2:16, 17.) and

threatened death upon the breach thereof; yet he did not long abide in this

honour; (<010312>Genesis 3:12, 13; <471103>2 Corinthians 11:3.) Satan using the subtilty

of the serpent to seduce Eve, then by her seducing Adam, who without any

compulsion, did wilfully transgress the Law of their Creation, and the

command given unto them, in eating the forbidden fruit; which God was

pleased according to his wise and holy Councel to permit, having purposed to

order it, to his own glory.

2. Our first Parents by this Sin, fell from their (<450323>Romans 3:23.) original

righteousness and communion with God, and we in them, whereby death came

upon all; (Romans 5.12 etc.) all becoming dead in Sin, and wholly

defiled,(<560115>Titus 1:15. <010605>Genesis 6:5. <241709>Jeremiah 17:9. <450310>Romans 3:10-

19.) in all the faculties, and parts, of soul, and body.

3. They being the (<450512>Romans 5:12-19; <461521>1 Corinthians 15:21, 22, 45, 49.)

root, and by Gods appointment, standing in the room, and stead of all mankind;

the guilt of the Sin was imputed, and corrupted nature conveyed, to all their

posterity descending from them by ordinary generation, being now (<195105>Psalm

51:5. <181404>Job 14:4.) conceived in Sin, and by nature children (<490203>Ephesians

2:3.) of wrath, the servants of Sin, the subjects (<450620>Romans 6:20 & ch. 5:12.)

of death and all other miseries, spiritual, temporal and eternal, unless the Lord

Jesus (<580214>Hebrews 2:14; <520110>1 Thessalonians 1:10.) set them free.

4. From this original corruption, whereby we are (<450807>Romans 8:7.

<510121>Colossians 1:21) utterly indisposed, disabled, and made opposite to all

good, and wholly inclined to all evil, do (<590114>James 1:14, 15. <401519>Matthew

15:19.) proceed all actual transgressions.

5. This corruption of nature, during this Life, doth (<450718>Romans 7:18, 23.

<210720>Ecclesiastes 7:20; <620108>1 John 1:8.) remain in those that are regenerated: and

although it be through Christ pardoned, and mortified, yet both it self, and the

first motions thereof, are truely and properly (<450724>Romans 7:24, 25. Galatians

5.17.) Sin.
 

CHAPTER 7. — OF GODS COVENANT.

1. THE distance between God and the Creature is so great, that although

reasonable Creatures do owe obedience unto him as their Creator, yet they

could never have attained the reward of Life, but by some (<421710>Luke 17:10.

<183507>Job 35:7, 8.) voluntary condescension on Gods part, which he hath been

pleased to express, by way of Covenant.

2. Moreover Man having brought himself (<010217>Genesis 2:17. <480310>Galatians

3:10, <450320>Romans 3:20, 21.) under the curse of the Law by his fall, it pleased

the Lord to make a Covenant of Grace wherein he freely offereth unto Sinners,

(<450803>Romans 8:3. <411615>Mark 16:15, 16. <430316>John 3:16.) Life and Salvation by

Jesus Christ, requiring of them Faith in him, that they may be saved; and

(<263626>Ezekiel 36:26, 27. <430644>John 6:44, 45. <19B003>Psalm 110:3.) promising to give

unto all those that are ordained unto eternal Life, his Holy Spirit, to make them

willing, and able to believe.

3. This Covenant is revealed in the Gospel; first of all to Adam in the promise

of Salvation by the (<010315>Genesis 3:15.) seed of the woman, and after-wards by

farther steps, until the full (<580101>Hebrews 1:1.) discovery thereof was

compleated in the new Testament; and it is founded in that (<550109>2 Timothy 1:9.

<560102>Titus 1:2.) Eternal Covenant transaction, that was between the Father and

the Son, about the Redemption of the Elect; and it is alone by the Grace of this

Covenant, that all of the posterity of fallen Adam, that ever were (<581106>Hebrews

11:6, 13. <450401>Romans 4:1, 2, etc. <440412>Acts 4:12. <430856>John 8:56.) saved, did

obtain life and a blessed immortality; Man being now utterly uncapable of

acceptance with God upon those terms, on which Adam stood in his state of

innocency.
 

CHAPTER 8. — OF CHRIST THE MEDIATOR.

1. IT pleased God in his eternal purpose, to chuse and ordain the Lord Jesus

his only begotten Son, according to the Covenant made between them

both,(<234201>Isaiah 42:1. <600119>1 Peter 1:19, 20.) to be the Mediator between God

and Man; the (<440322>Acts 3:22.) Prophet,(<580505>Hebrews 5:5, 6.) Priest and

(<190206>Psalm 2:6. <420133>Luke 1:33. <490123>Ephesians 1:23. <580102>Hebrews 1:2. <441731>Acts

17:31.) King; Head and Saviour of his Church, the heir of all things, and judge

of the world: Unto whom he did from all Eternity (<235310>Isaiah 53:10. <431706>John

17:6. <450830>Romans 8:30.) give a people to be his seed, and to be by him in time

redeemed, called, justified, sanctified, and glorified.

2. The Son of God, the second Person in the Holy Trinity, being very and

eternal God, the brightness of the Fathers glory, of one substance and equal

with him: who made the World, who upholdeth and governeth all things he

hath made: did when the fullness of time was come take upon him (<430101>John

1:1,14. <480404>Galatians 4:4.) mans nature, with all the Essential properties, and

common infirmities thereof, (<450803>Romans 8:3. <580214>Hebrews 2:14, 16, 17. ch.

4:15.) yet without sin: being conceived by the Holy Spirit in the Womb of the

Virgin Mary, the Holy Spirit coming down upon her, and the power of the most

High overshadowing her, (<420127>Luke 1:27, 31, 35.) and so was made of a

Woman, of the Tribe of Judah, of the Seed of Abraham, and David according

to the Scriptures: So that two whole, perfect, and distinct natures, were

inseparably joined together in one Person: without conversion, composition, or

confusion: which Person is very God, and very Man; yet one (<450905>Romans 9:5.

<540205>1 Timothy 2:5.) Christ, the only Mediator between God and Man.

3. The Lord Jesus in his human nature thus united to the divine, in the Person

of the Son, was sanctified, anointed (<194507>Psalm 45:7. <441038>Acts 10:38. <430334>John

3:34.) with the Holy Spirit, above measure; having in him (<510203>Colossians 2:3.)

all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge; in whom it pleased the Father that

(<510119>Colossians 1:19.) all fullness should dwell: To the end that being” holy,

harmless, undefiled, and full (<430114>John 1:14.) of Grace, and Truth, he might be

thoroughly furnished to execute the office of a Mediator, and (Hebrews 7.22.)

Surety; which office he took not upon himself, but was thereunto (<580505>Hebrews

5:5.) called by his Father; who also put (<430522>John 5:22, 27. <402818>Matthew 28:18.

<440236>Acts 2:36.) all power and judgement in his hand, and gave him

Commandement to execute the same.

4. This office the Lord Jesus did most (<194007>Psalm 40:7, 8. <581005>Hebrews 10:5-11.

<431018>John 10:18.) willingly undertake, which that he might discharge he was

made under the Law, (<480404>Galatians 4:4. <400315>Matthew 3:15.) and did perfectly

fulfill it, and under-went the (<480313>Galatians 3:13. <235306>Isaiah 53:6. <600318>1 Peter

3:18.) punishment due to us, which we should have born and suffered, being

made (<470521>2 Corinthians 5:21.) Sin and a Curse for us: enduring most grievous

sorrows (<402637>Matthew 26:37, 38. <422244>Luke 22:44. <402746>Matthew 27:46.) in his

Soul; and most painful sufferings in his body: was crucified. and died, and

remained in the state of the dead; yet saw no (<441337>Acts 13:37.) corruption: on

the (<461503>1 Corinthians 15:3. 4.) third day he arose from the dead, with the same

(<432025>John 20:25, 27.) body in which he suffered; with which he also (<411619>Mark

16:19. <440109>Acts 1:9, 10, 11.) ascended into heaven: and there sitteth at the right

hand of his Father, (<450834>Romans 8:34. <580924>Hebrews 9:24.) making intercession;

and shall (<441042>Acts 10:42. <451409>Romans 14:9, 10. <440110>Acts 1:10.) return to judge

Men and Angels, at the end of the World.

5. The Lord Jesus by his perfect obedience and sacrifice of himself, which he

through the Eternal Spirit once offered up unto God, (<580914>Hebrews 9:14. Ch.

10:14. <450325>Romans 3:25, 26.) hath fully satisfied the Justice of God, procured

reconciliation, and purchased an Everlasting inheritance in the Kingdom of

Heaven, (<431702>John 17:2. <580915>Hebrews 9:15.) for all those whom the Father hath

given unto him.

6. Although the price of Redemption was not actually paid by Christ, till after

his Incarnation, (<460410>1 Corinthians 4:10. <580402>Hebrews 4:2. <600110>1 Peter 1:10:11.)

yet the vertue, efficacy, and benefit thereof were communicated to the Elect in

all ages successively, from the beginning of the World, in and by those

Promises, Types, and Sacrifices, wherein he was revealed, and signified to be

the Seed of the Woman, which should bruise the Serpents head; (<661308>Revelation

13:8.) and the Lamb slain from the foundation of the World: (<581308>Hebrews

13:8.) Being the same yesterday, and to-day, and for ever.

7. Christ in the work of Mediation acteth according to both natures, by each

nature doing that which is proper to it self; yet by reason of the Unity of the

Person, that which is proper to one nature, is sometimes in Scripture attributed

to the Person (<430313>John 3:13. <442028>Acts 20:28.) denominated by the other nature.

8. To all those for whom Christ hath obtained eternal redemption, he doth

certainly, and effectually (<430637>John 6:37. ch. 10:15, 16. & ch. 17:9.) apply, and

communicate the same; making intercession for them, uniting them to him-self

by his spirit, (<431706>John 17:6. <490109>Ephesians 1:9. <620520>1 John 5:20.) revealing unto

them, in and by the word, the mystery of salvation; perswading them to

believe, and obey; (<450809>Romans 8:9, 14.) governing their hearts by his word

and spirit, and (<19B001>Psalm 110:1. <461525>1 Corinthians 15:25, 26.) overcoming all

their enemies by his Almighty power, and wisdom; in such manner, and wayes

as are most consonant to his wonderful, and (<430308>John 3:8. <490108>Ephesians 1:8.)

unsearchable dispensation; and all of free, and absolute Grace, without any

condition foreseen in them, to procure it.

9. This office of Mediator between God and man, is proper (<540205>1 Timothy

2:5.) onely to Christ, who is the Prophet, Priest, and King of the Church of

God; and may not be either in whole, or any part thereof transfer’ed from him

to any other.

10. This number and order of Offices is necessary; for in respect of our

(<430118>John 1:18.) ignorance, we stand in need of his prophetical Office; and in

respect of our alienation from God, (<510121>Colossians 1:21. <480517>Galatians 5:17.)

and imperfection of the best of our services, we need his Priestly office, to

reconcile us, and present us acceptable unto God: and in respect of our

averseness, and utter inability to return to God, and for our rescue, and security

from our spiritual adversaries, we need his Kingly office, (<431608>John 16:8.

<19B003>Psalm 110:3. <420174>Luke 1:74, 75.) to convince, subdue, draw, uphold,

deliver, and preserve us to his Heavenly King-dome.
 

CHAPTER 9. — OF FREE WILL.

1. GOD hath indued the Will of Man, with that natural liberty, and power of

acting upon choice; that it is (<401712>Matthew 17:12. <590114>James 1:14.

<053019>Deuteronomy 30:19.) neither forced, nor by any necessity of nature

determined to do good or evil.

2. Man in his state of innocency, had freedom, and power, to will, and to do

that (<210729>Ecclesiastes 7:29.) which was good, and well-pleasing to God; but yet

(<010306>Genesis 3:6.) was mutable, so that he might fall from it.

3. Man by his fall into a state of sin hath wholly lost (<450506>Romans 5:6. ch. 8:7.)

all ability of Will, to any spiritual good accompanying salvation; so as a

natural man, being altogether a-verse from that good, (<490201>Ephesians 2:1. 5.)

and dead in Sin, is not able, by his own strength, to (<560303>Titus 3:3, 4, 5.

<430644>John 6:44.) convert himself; or to prepare himself thereunto.

4. When God converts a sinner, and translates him into the state of Grace,

(<510113>Colossians 1:13. <430836>John 8:36.) he freeth him from his natural bondage

under sin, and by his grace alone, enables him (<503813>Philippians 2:13.) freely to

will, and to do that which is spiritually good; yet so as that by reason of his

(<450715>Romans 7:15, 18, 19, 21, 23.) remaining corruptions he doth not perfectly

nor only will that which is good; but doth also will that which is evil.

5. The Will of Man is made (<490413>Ephesians 4:13.) perfectly, and immutably

free to good alone, in the state of Glory only. [page]
 

CHAPTER 10. — OF EFFECTUAL CALLING.

1. THOSE whom God hath predestinated unto Life, he is pleased, in his

appointed, and accepted time, (<450830>Romans 8:30. <451107>Romans 11:7.

<490110>Ephesians 1:10, 11; <530313>2 Thessalonians 3:13, 14.) effectually to call by his

word, and Spirit, out of that state of sin, and death, in which they are by nature,

to grace and Salvation (<490201>Ephesians 2:1-6.) by Jesus Christ; in-lightning their

minds, spiritually, and savingly to (<442618>Acts 26:18. <490117>Ephesians 1:17, 18.)

understand the things of God; taking away their (<263626>Ezekiel 36:26.) heart of

stone, and giving unto them an heart of flesh; renewing their wills, and by his

Almighty power determining them (<053006>Deuteronomy 30:6. <263627>Ezekiel 36:27,

<490119>Ephesians 1:19.) to that which is good, and effectually drawing them to

Jesus Christ; yet so as they come (<19B003>Psalm 110:3. <220104>Song of Solomon 1:4.)

most freely, being made willing by his Grace.

2. This Effectual Call is of God’s free, and special grace a-lone (<550109>2 Timothy

1:9. <490208>Ephesians 2:8.) not from anything at all foreseen in man, nor from any

power, or agency in the Creature, coworking with his special Grace, (<460214>1

Corinthians 2:14. <490205>Ephesians 2:5. <430525>John 5:25.) the Creature being wholly

passive therein, being dead in sins and trespasses, until being quickened &

renewed by the holy Spirit, he is thereby enabled to answer this call, and to

embrace the Grace offered and conveyed in it; and that by no less

(<490119>Ephesians 1:19, 20.) power, then that which raised up Christ from the

dead.

3. Elect Infants dying in infancy, are (<430303>John 3:3, 5, 6.) regenerated and saved

by Christ through the Spirit; who worketh when, and where, and (<430308>John

3:8.) how he pleaseth: so also are all other elect persons, who are uncapable of

being outwardly called by the Ministry of the Word.

4. Others not elected, although they may be called by the Ministry of the word,

(<402214>Matthew 22:14. ch. 13:20, 21. <580604>Hebrews 6:4, 5.) and may have some

common operations of the Spirit, yet not being effectually drawn by the Father,

they neither will nor can truly (<430644>John 6:44, 45, 65; <620224>1 John 2:24, 25.)

come to Christ; and therefore cannot be saved: much less can men that receive

not the Christian Religion (<440412>Acts 4:12. <430422>John 4:22. ch. 17:3.) be saved; be

they never so diligent to frame their lives according to the light of nature, and

the Law of that Religion they do profess.
 

CHAPTER 11. — OF JUSTIFICATION.

1. THOSE whom God Effectually calleth, he also freely (Romans 3, 24. ch.

8:30.) justifieth, not by infusing Righteousness into them, but by (Romans 4, 5,

6, 7, 8. <490107>Ephesians 1:7.) pardoning their sins, and by accounting, and

accepting their Persons as (<460130>1 Corinthians 1:30, 31. <450517>Romans 5:17, 18,

19.) Righteous; not for any thing wrought in them, or done by them, but for

Christ’s sake alone, not by imputing faith it self, the act of believing, or any

other (<500308>Philippians 3:8, 9. <490208>Ephesians 2:8, 9, 10.) evangelical obedience

to them, as their Righteousness; but by imputing Christs active obedience unto

the whole Law, and passive obedience in his death, for their whole and sole

Righteousness, they (<430112>John 1:12. <450517>Romans 5:17.) receiving, and resting

on him, and his Righteousness, by Faith; which faith they have not of

themselves, it is the gift of God.

2. Faith thus receiving and resting on Christ, and his Righteousness, is the

(<450328>Romans 3:28.) alone instrument of Justification: yet it is not alone in the

person justified, but is ever accompanied with all other saving Graces, and is

no dead faith, (<480506>Galatians 5:6. <590217>James 2:17, 22, 26.) but worketh by love.

3. Christ by his obedience, and death, did fully discharge the debt of all those

that are justified; and did by the sacrifice of himself, in the blood of his cross,

undergoing in their stead, the penalty due unto them: make a proper, real, and

full satisfaction (<581014>Hebrews 10:14; <600118>1 Peter 1:18, 19. <235305>Isaiah 53:5, 6.) to

Gods justice in their behalf: yet in asmuch as he was given by the Father for

them, and his Obedience and Satisfaction accepted in their stead, and both

(<450832>Romans 8:32; <470521>2 Corinthians 5:21.) freely, not for any-thing in them;

their Justification is only of Free Grace, that both the exact justice and rich

Grace of God, might be (<450326>Romans 3:26. <490106>Ephesians 1:6, 7. ch. 2:7.)

glorified in the Justification of sinners.

4. God did from all eternity decree to (<480308>Galatians 3:8. <600102>1 Peter 1:2. <540206>1

Timothy 2:6.) justifie all the Elect, and Christ did in the fulness of time die for

their sins, and rise (<450425>Romans 4:25.) again for their Justification;

Nevertheless they are not justified personally, until the Holy Spirit, doth in due

time (<510121>Colossians 1:21, 22. <560304>Titus 3:4, 5, 6, 7.) actually apply Christ unto

them.

5. God doth continue to (<400612>Matthew 6:12; <620107>1 John 1:7, 9.) Forgive the sins

of those that are justified, and although they can never fall from the state of

(John 10:28.) justification; yet they may by their sins fall under Gods

(<198931>Psalm 89:31:32, 33.) Fatherly displeasure; and in that condition, they have

not usually the light of his Countenance restored unto them, until they

(<193205>Psalm 32:5. & 51. <402675>Matthew 26:75.) humble themselves, confess their

sins, beg pardon, and renew their faith, and repentance.

6. The Justification of Believers under the Old Testament was in all these

respects, (<480309>Galatians 3:9. <450422>Romans 4:22, 23, 24.) one and the same with

the justification of Believers under the New Testament.
 

CHAPTER 12. — OF ADOPTION.

ALL those that are justified, God vouchsafed, in, and for the sake of his only

Son Jesus Christ, to make partakers of the Grace (<490105>Ephesians 1:5.

<480404>Galatians 4:4, 5.) of Adoption; by which they are taken into the number,

and enjoy the Liberties, and (<430112>John 1:12. <450817>Romans 8:17.) Privileges of

Children of God; have his (<470618>2 Corinthians 6:18. <660312>Revelation 3:12.) name

put upon them, (<450815>Romans 8:15.) receive the Spirit of Adoption,

(<480406>Galatians 4:6. <490218>Ephesians 2:18.) have access to the throne of Grace with

boldness, are enabled to cry Abba Father, are (<19A313>Psalm 103:13.) pitied,

(<201426>Proverbs 14:26.) protected, (<600507>1 Peter 5:7.) provided for, and

(<581206>Hebrews 12:6.) chastned by him, as by a Father; yet never (<235408>Isaiah

54:8, 9. <250331>Lamentations 3:31.) cast off; but sealed (<490430>Ephesians 4:30.) to the

day of Redemption, and inherit the promises, (<580114>Hebrews 1:14. ch. 6:12.) as

heirs, of everlasting Salvation.
 

CHAPTER 13. — OF SANCTIFICATION.

1. They who are united to Christ, Effectually called, and regenerated, having a

new heart, and a new Spirit created in them, through the vertue of Christ’s

death, and Resurrection; are also (<442032>Acts 20:32. <450605>Romans 6:5, 6.) farther

sanctified, really, and personally, through the same vertue, (<431717>John 17:17.

<490316>Ephesians 3:16, 17, 18, 19; <520521>1 Thessalonians 5:21, 22, 23.) by his word

and Spirit dwelling in them; (<450614>Romans 6:14.) the dominion of the whole

body of sin is destroyed, (<480524>Galatians 5:24.) and the several lusts thereof, are

more and more weakened, and mortified; and they more and more quickened,

and (<510111>Colossians 1:11.) strengthened in all saving graces, to the (<470701>2

Corinthians 7:1. <581214>Hebrews 12:14.) practice of all true holyness, without

which no man shall see the Lord.

2. This Sanctification is (<520523>1 Thessalonians 5:23.) throughout, in the whole

man, yet imperfect (<450718>Romans 7:18, 23.) in this life; there abideth still some

remnants of corruption in every part, whence ariseth a (<480517>Galatians 5:17;

<600211>1 Peter 2:11.) continual, and irreconcilable war; the Flesh lusting against

the Spirit, and the Spirit against the Flesh.

3. In which war, although the remaining corruption for a time may much

(<450723>Romans 7:23.) prevail; yet through the continual supply of strength from

the sanctifying Spirit of Christ the (<450614>Romans 6:14.) regenerate part doth

over-come; and so the Saints grow in Grace, perfecting holiness in the fear of

God, (<490415>Ephesians 4:15, 16; <470318>2 Corinthians 3:18. ch. 7:1.) pressing after an

heavenly life, in Evangelical Obedience to all the commands which Christ as

Head and King, in his Word hath prescribed to them.
 

CHAPTER 14. — OF SAVING FAITH.

1. THE Grace of Faith, where-by the Elect are enabled to believe to the saving

of their souls, is the work of the Spirit of Christ (<470413>2 Corinthians 4:13.

<490208>Ephesians 2:8.) in their hearts; and is ordinarily wrought by the Ministry of

the (<451014>Romans 10:14, 17.) Word; by which also, and by the administration of

Baptisme, and the Lords Supper, Prayer and other Means appointed of God, it

is increased, (<421705>Luke 17:5. <600202>1 Peter 2:2. <442032>Acts 20:32.) and strengthened.

2. By this Faith a Christian believeth to be true, (<442414>Acts 24:14.) whatsoever

is revealed in the Word, for the Authority of God himself; and also

apprehendeth an excellency therein, (<191907>Psalm 19:7, 8, 9, 10. <19B972>Psalm

119:72.) above all other Writings; and all things in the world: as it bears forth

the glory of God in his Attributes, the excellency of Christ in his Nature and

Offices; and the Power and Fullness of the Holy Spirit in his Workings, and

Operations; and so is enabled to (<550112>2 Timothy 1:12.) cast his Soul upon the

truth thus believed; and also acteth differently, upon that which each particular,

passage thereof containeth; yielding obedience to the (<431514>John 15:14.)

commands, trembling at the (<236602>Isaiah 66:2.) threatenings, and embracing the

(<581113>Hebrews 11:13.) promises of God, for this life, and that which is to come:

But the principal acts of Saving Faith, have immediate relation to Christ,

accepting, receiving, and resting upon (<430112>John 1:12. <441631>Acts 16:31.

<480220>Galatians 2:20. <441511>Acts 15:11.) him alone, for Justification, Sanctification,

and Eternal Life, by vertue of the Covenant of Grace.

3. This Faith although it be different in degrees, and may be weak,

(<580513>Hebrews 5:13, 14. <400630>Matthew 6:30. <450419>Romans 4:19, 20.) or strong; yet

it is in. the least degree of it, different in the kind, or nature of it (as is all other

saving Grace) from the Faith, (<610101>2 Peter 1:1.) and common grace of

temporary believers; and therefore though it may be many times assailed, and

weakened; yet it gets (<490616>Ephesians 6:16; <620504>1 John 5:4, 5.) the victory;

growing up in many, to the attainment of a full (<580611>Hebrews 6:11, 12.

<510202>Colossians 2:2.) assurance through Christ, who is both the Author

(<581202>Hebrews 12:2.) and finisher of our Faith.
 

CHAPTER 15. — OF REPENTANCE UNTO LIFE

AND SALVATION.

1. Such of the Elect as are converted at riper years, having (<560302>Titus 3:2, 3, 4,

5.) sometimes lived in the state of nature, and therein served divers lusts and

pleasures, God in their Effectual Calling giveth them Repentence unto Life.

2. Whereas there is none that doth good, and sinneth (<210720>Ecclesiastes 7:20.)

not; and the best of men may, through the power, and deceitfulness of their

corruption dwelling in them, with the prevalency of temptation, fall into great

sins, and provocations; God hath in the Covenant of Grace, mercifully

provided that Believers so sinning, and falling, (<422231>Luke 22:31, 32.) be

renewed through Repentance unto Salvation.

3. This saving Repentance is an (<381210>Zechariah 12:10. <441118>Acts 11:18.)

evangelical Grace, where-by a person, being by the Holy Spirit made sensible

of the manifold evils of his sin, doth, by Faith in Christ, humble himself for it,

with godly sorrow, detestation of it, and self-abhorrency; (<263631>Ezekiel 36:31;

<470711>2 Corinthians 7:11.) praying for pardon, and strength of grace, with a

purpose and endeavour by supplies of the Spirit, to (<19B906>Psalm 119:6.

<19B9128>Psalm 119:128.) walk before God unto all well pleasing in all things.

4. As Repentance is to be continued through the whole course of our lives,

upon the account of the body of death, and the motions thereof; so it is every

mans duty, to repent of his (<421908>Luke 19:8. <540113>1 Timothy 1:13:15.) particular

known sins, particularly.

5. Such is the provision which God hath made through Christ in the Covenant

of Grace, for the preservation of Believers unto Salvation, that although there

is no sin so small, but it deserves (<450623>Romans 6:23.) damnation; yet there is no

sin so great, that it shall bring damnation on them that (<230116>Isaiah 1:16:18.

<235507>Isaiah 55:7.) repent; which makes the constant preaching of Repentance

necessary.
 

CHAPTER 16. — OF GOOD WORKS.

 

1. GOOD Works are only such as God hath (<330608>Micah 6:8. <581321>Hebrews 13:21.)

commanded in his Holy word; and not such as without the warrant thereof, are

devised by men, out of blind zeal, (<401509>Matthew 15:9. <232913>Isaiah 29:13.) or

upon any pretence of good intentions.

2. These good works, done in obedience to Gods commandments, are the

fruits, and evidences (<590218>James 2:18, 22.) of a true, and lively faith; and by

them Believers manifest their (<19B612>Psalm 116:12, 13.) thankfullness, strengthen

their (<620203>1 John 2:3, 5; <610105>2 Peter 1:5-11.) assurance, edifie their

(<400516>Matthew 5:16.) brethren, adorn the profession of the Gospel, stop the

mouths of the adversaries, and glorifie (<540601>1 Timothy 6:1. <600215>1 Peter 2:15.

<500111>Philippians 1:11.) God, whose workmanship they are, created in Christ

Jesus (<490210>Ephesians 2:10.) thereunto, that having their fruit unto holiness, they

may have the end (<450622>Romans 6:22.) eternal life.

3. Their ability to do good works, is not at all of themselves; but wholly from

the Spirit (<431504>John 15:4, 6.) of Christ; and that they may be enabled thereunto,

besides the graces they have already received, there is necessary an (<470305>2

Corinthians 3:5. <503813>Philippians 2:13.) actual influence of the same Holy Spirit,

to work in them to will, and to do, of his good pleasure; yet are they not

hereupon to grow negligent, as if they were not bound to perform any duty,

unless upon a special motion of the Spirit; but they ought to be diligent in

(<503512>Philippians 2:12. <580611>Hebrews 6:11:12. <236407>Isaiah 64:7.) stir-ring up the

Grace of God that is in them.

4. They who in their obedience attain to the greatest height which is possible in

this life, are so far from being able to superrogate, and to do more than God re-

quires, as that (<180902>Job 9:2, 3. <480517>Galatians 5:17. <421710>Luke 17:10.) they fall

short of much which in duty they are bound to do.

5. We cannot by our best works merit pardon of Sin or Eternal Life at the hand

of God, by reason of the great disproportion that is between them and the glory

to come; and the infinite distance that is between us and God, whom by them

we can neither profit, nor satisfie for the debt of our (<450320>Romans 3:20.

<490208>Ephesians 2:8, 9. <450406>Romans 4:6.) former sins; but when we have done all

we can, we have done but our duty, and are unprofitable servants; and because

as they are good they proceed from his (<480522>Galatians 5:22, 23.) Spirit, and as

they are wrought by us they are defiled (<236406>Isaiah 64:6. <19E302>Psalm 143:2.) and

mixed with so much weakness and imperfection that they cannot endure the

severity of Gods judgment.

6. Yet notwithstanding the persons of Believers being accepted through Christ

their good works also are accepted in (<490106>Ephesians 1:6. <600205>1 Peter 2:5.) him;

not as though they were in this life wholly unblameable and unreprovable in

Gods sight; but that he looking upon them in his Son is pleased to accept and

re-ward that which is (<402521>Matthew 25:21, 23. <580610>Hebrews 6:10.) sincere although

accomplished with many weaknesses and imperfections.

7. Works done by unregenerate men, although for the matter of them they may

be things which God commands, and of good use, both to themselves and

(<121030>2 Kings 10:30; <112127>1 Kings 21:27, 29.) others; yet because they proceed

not from a heart purified by (<010405>Genesis 4:5. <581104>Hebrews 11:4, 6.) faith, nor

are done in a right manner according to the (<461301>1 Corinthians 13:1.) word, nor

to a right end the (<400602>Matthew 6:2, 5.) glory of God; they are therefore sinful

and can-not please God; nor make a man meet to receive grace from (<300521>Amos

5:21, 22. <450916>Romans 9:16. <560305>Titus 3:5.) God; and yet their neglect of them is

more sinful and (<182114>Job 21:14, 15. <402541>Matthew 25:41, 42, 43.) displeasing to

God.
 

CHAPTER 17. — OF PERSEVERENCE

OF THE SAINTS.

 

1. THOSE whom God hath accepted in the beloved, effectually called and

Sanctified by his Spirit, and given the precious faith of his Elect unto, can

neither totally nor finally fall from the state of grace; (<431028>John 10:28, 29.

<500106>Philippians 1:6. <550219>2 Timothy 2:19; <620219>1 John 2:19.) but shall certainly

persevere therein to the end and be eternally saved, seeing the gifts and

callings of God are without Repentance, (whence he still begets and nourisheth

in them Faith, Repentance, Love, Joy, Hope, and all the graces of the Spirit

unto immortality) and though many storms and floods arise and beat against

them, yet they shall never be able to take them off that foundation and rock

which by faith they are fastned upon: notwithstanding through unbelief and the

temptations of Satan the sensible sight of the light and love of God, may for a

time be clouded, and obscured from (<198931>Psalm 89:31, 32; <461132>1 Corinthians

11:32.) them, yet he is still the same, (<390306>Malachi 3:6.) and they shall be sure

to be kept by the power of God unto Salvation, where they shall enjoy their

purchased possession, they being engraven upon the palms of his hands, and

their names having been written in the book of life from all Eternity.

2. This perseverance of the Saints depends. not upon their own free will; but

upon the immutability of the decree of (<450830>Romans 8:30. ch. 9:11, 16.)

Election, flowing from the free and unchangeable love of God the Father; upon

the efficacy of the merit and intercession of Jesus Christ (<450509>Romans 5:9, 10.

<431419>John 14:19.) and Union with him, the (<580617>Hebrews 6:17, 18.) oath of God,

the abiding of his Spirit & the (<620309>1 John 3:9.) seed of God with-in them, and

the nature of the (<243240>Jeremiah 32:40.) Covenant of Grace from all which

ariseth also the certainty and in-fallibility thereof.

3. And though they may, through the temptation of Satan and of the world, the

prevalency of corruption remaining in them, and the neglect of the means of

their preservation fall into grievous (<402670>Matthew 26:70, 72, 74.) sins, and for a

time continue therein; whereby they incur (<236405>Isaiah 64:5. 9. <490430>Ephesians

4:30.) Gods displeasure, and grieve his holy Spirit, come to have their graces

and (<195110>Psalm 51:10, 12.) comforts impaired have their hearts hardened, and

their Consciences wounded, (<193203>Psalm 32:3, 4.) hurt, and scandalize others,

and bring temporal judgements (<101214>2 Samuel 12:14.) upon themselves: yet

they shall renew their (<422232>Luke 22:32 & 5:61, 62.) repentance and be preserved

through faith in Christ Jesus to the end.
 

CHAPTER 18. — OF THE ASSURANCE OF GRACE

AND SALVATION.

1. ALTHOUGH temporary Believers, and other unregenerate men, may vainly

deceive them-selves with false hopes, and carnal presumptions, of being in the

favour of God, and in a state of salvation, (<180813>Job 8:13, 14. <400722>Matthew 7:22,

23.) which hope of theirs shall perish; yet such as truly believe in the Lord

Jesus, and love him in sincerity, endeavouring to walk in all good Conscience

before him, may in this life be certainly assured (<620203>1 John 2:3. ch. 3:14:18,

19, 21, 24. ch. 5:13.) that they are in the state of Grace; and may rejoice in the

hope of the glory of God which hope shall never make them (<450502>Romans 5:2,

5.) ashamed.

2. This certainty is not a bare conjectural and probable perswasion, grounded

upon (<580611>Hebrews 6:11, 19.) a fallible hope; but an infallible assurance of

faith, founded on the Blood and Righteousness of Christ (<580617>Hebrews 6:17,

18.) revealed in the Gospel; and also upon the inward (<610104>2 Peter 1:4, 5, 10,

11.) evidence of those graces of the Spirit unto which promises are made, and

on the testimony of the (<450815>Romans 8:15, 16.) Spirit of adoption, witnessing

with our Spirits that we are the children of God; and as a fruit thereof keeping

the heart both (<620301>1 John 3:1, 2, 3.) humble and holy.

3. This infallible assurance doth not so belong to the essence of faith, but that a

true Believer, may wait long and conflict with many difficulties before he be

(<235010>Isaiah 50:10. Psalm 88. & <197701>Psalm 77:1-12.) partaker of it; yet being

enabled by the Spirit to know the things which are freely given him of God, he

may without extraordinary revelation in the right use of means (<620413>1 John

4:13. <580611>Hebrews 6:11, 12.) attain thereunto: and therefore it is the duty of

every one, to give all diligence to make their Calling and Election sure, that

thereby his heart may be enlarged in peace and joy in the holy Spirit, in love

and thankfulness to God, and in strength and chearfulness in the duties of

obedience, the proper (<450501>Romans 5:1, 2, 5. ch. 14:17. <19B932>Psalm 119:32.)

fruits of this Assurance; so far is it (<450601>Romans 6:1, 2. <560211>Titus 2:11, 12, 14.)

from inclining men to looseness.

4. True Believers may have the assurance of their Salvation divers ways

shaken, diminished, and intermitted; as (<220502>Song of Solomon 5:2, 3, 6.) by

negligence in preserving of it, by (<195108>Psalm 51:8, 12, 14.) falling into some

special Sin, which woundeth the Conscience, and grieveth the Spirit, by some

sudden or (<19B611>Psalm 116:11. <197707>Psalm 77:7, 8. <193122>Psalm 31:22.) vehement

temptation, by Gods with-drawing the (<193007>Psalm 30:7.) light of his

countenance and suffering even such as fear him to walk in darkness and to

have no light; yet are they never destitute of the (<620309>1 John 3:9.) seed of God,

and Life (<422232>Luke 22:32.) of Faith, that Love of Christ, and the brethren, that

sincerity of Heart, and Conscience of duty, out of which by the operation of the

Spirit, this Assurance may in due time be (<194205>Psalm 42:5, 11.) revived: and by

the which in the mean time they are (<250326>Lamentations 3:26:27-31.) preserved

from utter despair.