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that hath ears to hear, let him hear."

How much, therefore, is the tender-hearted, and
he that labourotii to beautify his profession with a
gospel conversation, bound to bless God for the
salt of his grace, by the which his heart is sea-
soned, and from his heart, his conversation.

Second. As such Cliristians should bless God, so
let tijem watch, let them still watch, let them still
watch and pray, watch against Satan, and pray yet
for more grace, that they may yet more and more
beautify their profession of the worthy name of
Christ with a suitable conversation. Blessed is he
that wateheth and keepeth his garment ; that is, his
conversation clean, nor is there anything, save the
overthrowing of our faith, that Satan seeketh more
to destroy. He knows hoUness in them that rightly,
a« to doctrine, name the name of Christ, is a maul
and destruction to his kingdom, an allurement to
the ignorant, and a cutting off those occasions to
Btnmble, that by the dirty life of a professor is laid
in the way of the blind. (Lev. xix. 14.) He knows
that holiness of lives, when they shine in those
that profess the name of Christ, doth cut off his
lies that he seeketh to make the world believe, and
slanders that he seeketh to fasten upon the pro-
fessors of the gospel. \Vherefore, as you have
begun to glorify God in your body and in your
spirit, which are God's, so I beseech you to do it
more ami more.

Third. To tliis end, shun those professors that are
lf)osc of life and conversation. " From such with-
draw thyself," saith Paul, " and follow righteous-
ness, faitli, charity, peace with them that call on
the Lord out of a pure heart." (I Tim. vi. 5.
li Tim. ii. *J2.) If a man, if a good man takes not
K«KKi hoed to himself, he shall soon bring his soul
into a «nnrv. Loose jjrofcssors arc dchlers and
c.mipters; a man sliall get nothing but a blot by
having company with them. (r«n. i. 4.) Besides,
Ma man shall get a blot by having much to do
tsith su«-h ; lU), let him beware that his he.nrt learn
Uouo of their «ny«.* Let tliy couipanv be the
excellent in the earth ; even lliose that are e.x-
cellcnt for knowh-dge and conversation. " He
that wnlk.th with wiKp nu-n shall be wise ; but a
companion of fooU phall be destroyed."

Ik' content to be counted singular, for so thou
•halt, if thou shalt follow after rightcouHness, &c., in
Kooil earnest ; for hoHnce« Ih a raro thing now in the
world. I loltl th-'p bof.irc il.at it is foretold by the
Word, thai in the la^t days perilous times shall come



I)rofessors,' to their destruction. Nor will it be
easy to keep thyself therefrom. But even as when
the pestilence is come into a place, it infccteth,
and casteth down the healthful ; so the iniquity of
the last times will infect and pollute the godly. I
mean the generality of them. Were but our times
duly compared with those that went before, we
sliould see that which now we are ignorant of.
Did we but look back to the Puritans, but espe-
cially to those that but a little before them suffered
for the word of God in the Marian days, we should
see another life than is now among men, another
manner of conversation than now is among pro-
fessors. But I say, predictions and prophecies
must be fulfilled ; and since the word says plainly,
that '' in the last days there shall come scoffers,
walking after their own lusts." (2 Pet. iii. 3, 17.)
And since the Christians shall be endangered
thereby, let us look to it, that we acquit ourselves
like men, seeing we know these things before ;
lest we, being led away with the error of the
wicked, fall from our own steadfastness.

Singularity in godliness, if it be in godliness, no
man should be ashamed of. For that is no more
tlian to be more godly, than to walk more humbly
with God than others ; and for my part, I had
rather be a pattern and example of piety. I had
rather that my life should be instructing to the
saints, and condemning to the world, with Xoali
and Lot, than to hazard myself among the multi-
tude of the drossy.

I know that many professors will fall short of
eternal life, and my judgment tells me, that they
will be of the slovenly sort of professors, that so
do. And for my part, I had rather run with the
foremost and win the prize, than come behind,
and lose that and my labour and all. If a man
also strive for masteries, yet is he not crowned,
except he strive lawfully. And when men have
said all they can, they are the truly redeemed,
'' that are zealous of good works." (1 Cor. ix. 24.
2 Tim. ii. 4, 5. Tit. ii. 14.)

Not that works do save us, but faith, which laycth
hold on Christ's righteousness for justification,
sanctifies the heart, and makes men desirous to
live in this world, to the glory of that Christ, who
died in this world to save us from death.

For my part, I doubt of the faith oi many, and
fear that it will prove no better at the day of God
than will the faith of devils. For that it staudeth
in bare speculation, and is without life and soul to
that which is good. Where is the man that
walketh with his cross upon his shoulder ? ^Vhere
is the man that is zealous of moral holiness ?
Indeed, for those things that have nothing of the
cross of the ])urse, or of the cross of the belly, or
of the cross of the back, or of the cross of the
vanity of household affairs; for those things, I
find we have many, and those, very busy sticklers;
but otherwise, the cross, self-denial, charity, jiurity
in life and conversation, is almost quite out-of-



A HOLY LIFE THE BEAUTY OF CHRISTIANITY.



:"!31



doors among professors. But, man of God, do
thou be singular as to these, and as to their
conversation. " Be not ye therefore partakers with
them" (Eph. v. 7) in any of their ways, but
keep thy soul diligently, for if damage happeneth
to thee, thou alone must bear it.

Bat he that will depart from iniquity, must be
well fortified with faith, and patience, and the love
of God, for iniquity has its beauty-spots, and its
advantages attending on it : hence it is compared
to a woman, (Zech. v. 7.) for it allureth greatly.
Wherefore, I say, he that will depart therefrom
had need have faith, that being it which will help
him to see beyond it, and that will show him more
in things that are invisible, than can be found in
sin, were it ten thousand times more entangling
than it is. ( 2 Cor. iv. 18. ) He has need of patience
also to hold out in this work of departing from
iniquity. For indeed to depart from that, is to
draw my mind off from that, which will follow me
with continual solicitations. Samson withstood
his Delilah for a while, but she got the mastery of
him at the last ; why so ? Because he wanted
patience, he grew angry and was vexed, and could
withstand her solicitation no longer. (Jndges xvi.
15 — 17.) Many there be also, that can well
enough be contented to shut sin out-of-doors for a
while ; but because sin has much fair speech,
therefore it overcomes at last. (Prov. vii. 21.)
For sin and iniquity will not be easily said nay ;
it is like her of whom you read, she has a whore's
forehead, and refuses to be ashamed. (Jer. iii. 3.)
Wherefore, departing from iniquity is a work for
length, as long as life shall last. A work did I
say ? it is a war ; a continual combat ; wherefore,
he that will adventure to set upon this work must
needs be armed with faith and patience, a daily
exercise he will find himself put upon by the
continual attempts of iniquity to be putting forth
itself. (Matt. xxiv. 13. Rev. ii'i. 10.) This is called
an enduring to the end, a continuing in the word
of Christ, and also a keeping of the word of his
patience. But what man in the world can do this,
whose heart is not seasoned with the love of God,
and the love of Christ? Therefore, he that will
exercise himself in this wofk must be often consi-
dering of the love of God to him in Christ ; for
the more sense or apprehension a man shall have
of that, the more easy and pleasant will this work
be to him ; yea, though tlie doing thereof should
cost him his heart's blood. " Thy loving-kindness
is before mine eyes," says David, " and I have
walked in thy truth." (Ps. xxvi. 3.) Nothing Hke
the sense, sight, or belief of that, to the man of
God, to make him depart from iniquity.

But what shall I do, I cannot depart therefrom
as I should ?

Keep thine eye upon all thy shortnesses, or
npon all thy failures, for that is profitable for thee.
1. The sight of this will make thee base in thine
own eyes. 2. It will give thee occasion to see the
need and excellency of repentance. 3, It will put



thee upon prayer to God for help and pardon.

4. It will make thee weary of this world. 5. It
will make grace to persevere the more desirable
in thine eyes.

Also, it will help thee in the things which
follow : — 1. It will make thee see the need of
Christ's righteousness. 2. It will make thee see
the need of Christ's intercession. 3. It will make
thee see thy need of Christ's advocateship. 4. It
will make thee see the riches of God's patience.

5. And it Mill make heaven and eternal hfe the
sweeter to thee when thou comest there.

But to the question. Get more grace, for the
more grace thou hast, the further is thine heart
set off of iniquity, the more also set against it, and
the better able to depart from it, when it cometh
to thee, tempteth thee, and entreats thee for
entertainment. Now the way to have more grace,
is to have more knowledge of Christ, and to pray
more fervently in his name ; also to subject thy
soul and thy lusts with all thy power to the
autliority of that grace thou hast, and to judge and
condemn thyself most heartily before God, for
every secret inclination that thou findest in thy
flesh to sin -ward.

The improvement of what thou hast, is that, as
I may say, by which God judges how thou
wonkiest use, if thou hadst it more ; and according
to that, so shalt thou have, or not have, a further
measure. He that is faithful in that which is
least, is faithful, and will be so, also in much, and
he that is unjust in the least, is, and will be,
unjust also in much. I know Christ speaks here
about the unrighteous mammon, but the same
may be applied also unto the thing in hand.
(Luke xvi. 10—12.)

And if ye have not been faithful in that which
is another man's, who will commit unto you that
which is your own ? that is a remarkable place to
this purpose in the Revelations ; " Behold," saith
he, " I have set before thee an open door (that
thou mayest have what thou wilt, as was also
said to the improving woman of Canaan), and no
man can shut it: for thou hast a little strength,
and hast held fast my word, and hast not denied
my name." (Rev. iii. 8. Matt. xv. 28.)

A good improvement of what we have of the
grace of God at present pleases God, and engages
him to give us more; but an ill improvement of
what we at present have will not do so. '' To
him that hath (that hath an heart to improve what
he hath) to him siiall be given ; but to him that
hath not, from him shall be taken even that which
he hath." (I\Iatt. xxv. 24—30.) Well, weigh the
place and you shall find it so.

I know that to depart from iniquity so as is
required, that is to the utmost degree of the re-
quirement, no man can ; for it is a copy too fair
for mortal flesh exactly to imitate while we are in
this world. But with good paper, good ink, and
a good pen, a skilful and willing man may go far
And it is well for thee if thy complaint be sincere



332



A HOLY LIFE THE BEAUTY OF CHRISTIANITY.



to wit, that thou nrt troubleJ that thou canst not
forsake iniquity, as thou shouklost ; fur God ac-
ccptcth of thy design and desire, and it is counted
by him as thy kindness. (Prov. xix. 22.) But if
thy coiuj laint'in this matter be true, tliou wilt not
rest, nor content thyself in thy complaints, but
wilt, as he that is truly hungry, or greatly bur-
dened, useth all lawful means to satisfy his hunger,
and to case himself of his burden, use all thy
skill and power to mortily and keep them under
bv the word of God. Nor can it otherwise be
biit that such a man must be a growing man.
" Every branch that beareth fruit, he purgeth it,
that it may bring forth more fruit." (John xv. 2.)
Such a man shall not be stumbling in religion,
nor a scandal to it in his calling ; but shall, accord-
ing to God's ordinary way with his people, be a
fruitful and flourishing bough.

And I would to God this were the sickness of
all them that profess in this nation. For then
should we soon have a new leaf turned over in
most corners of this nation ; then would gracious-
ness of heart, and life, and conversation, be more
prized, more sought after, and better improved
and practised than it is. Y'ea, then would the
throats of ungodly men be better stopped, and
their mouths faster shut up, as to their reproach-
inef of religion than they are. A Christian man
must be the object of the envy of the world ; but
it is better, if the will of God be so, that we be
reproached for well-doing than for evil. (1 Pet. ii.';
iii.) If we be reproached for evil-doing, it is our
phame ; but if for well-doing, it is our glory. If
we be reproached for our sins, God cannot vindi-
cate U8 ; but if we be reproached for a virtuous
life, God himself is concerned, will espouse our
qnarrel, and in his good time will show our foes
our righteousness, and put them to shame and
Mlence. Briefly, a godly life annexed to faith
in Christ, is so necessary, that a man that pro-
fcMcs the name of Christ is worse than a beast
without it.

But thou wilt say unto me, Why do men prr)fess
the name of Christ, that love not to depart from
iniquity?

I answer, There are many reasons for it.

1. The preacliing of the gospel, and so, the
I>ublication of the name of Ciirist, is musical and
very taking to the children of men. A Saviour !
a Redeemer! a 1 ning sin-pardoninj .Ict^us 1 what



better words can come from man ? what better
melody can be heard '? " Son of man," said God
to the prophet, "Lo! thou art to them as a very
lovely song," or as a song of loves, " of one that
hath a pleasant voice, and can play well on an
instrument." (Ezek. xxxili. 32.) The gospel is a
most melodious note, and sweet tune to any that
are not prepossessed with slander, reproach, and
enmity against the professors of it. Now its
melodious notes being so sweet, no marvel if it
entangle some, even of them that yet will not
depart from iniquity to take up and profess so
lovely a profession. But,

2. There are a generation of men that are and
have been frightened with the law, and terrified
with fears of perishing for their sins, but yet have
not grace to leave them. Now, when the sound
of the gospel shall reach such men's ears, because
there is by that made public the willingness of
Christ to die for sin, and of God to forgive them
for his sake ; therefore, they presently receive and
profess those notions as the only ones that can rid
them from their frights and terrors, falsely resting
themselves content with that faith thereof which
standeth in naked knowledge ; yea, liking of that
faith best that will stand w'itli their pride, covet-
ousness, and lechery, never desiring to hear of
practical holiness, because it w-ill disturb them;
wherefore they usually cast dirt at such, calling
them legal preachers.

3. Here also is a design of Satan set on foot.
For these carnal gospelers are his tares, the chil-
dren of the wicked one ; those that he hath sowed
among the wheat of purpose, if possible, that that
might be rooted up by beholding and learning to
be vile and filthy of them. (Matt. xiii. 36—42.)

4. Another cause hereof is this, the hypocrites
that begin to profess find as bad as themselves
already in a profession of this worthy name; and,
think they, these do so and so, and therefore so
will I.

5. This comes to pass also through the righteous
judgment of God, who, through the anger that he
has conceived against some men for their sins, will
lift them up to heaven before he casts them down
to hell, that their fall may be the greater and their
punishment the more intolerable. (Matt. xi. 20 —
24.) I have now done, when I have read to you
xny text over again : " And let every one that
nameth the name of Christ depart from iniquity."



PREFATORY REMARKS



THE ACCEPTABLE SACRIFICE.



By wliatevor words, or title, tlic process be described, some great change, or breaking np of the
human heart has generally preceded the grander displays of its power and affections. In the records
of history and biography we meet perpetually with cases illustrating this truth. Some affliction
piercing it as with a sword; some event shaking it with awe and astonishment; or even the burst of
light, following on the discovery of a new truth, has often been found to open springs of fresh life in
the heart, and so prepare it for a more vigorous existence. The process thus indicated is analogous to
the change which the seed undergoes before it germinates into apparent and fruitful life. Its death,
as it is termed, is but the breaking up of the outward folds, which form a barrier to its hidden virtues.
Without the bursting of these coverings, it would never fulfil the objects of its creation. The human
heart, sensitive and trembling, shrinks from the suffering involved in any change so accomplished. It
is not, therefore, left to itself to choose the waj' in which it shall be effected. Divine Providence and
the Holy Spirit are the sole efficient agents in this work. They alone possess the varied means, the
wisdom and the power, by which human hearts may be broken, and then remoulded, with unspeakable
additions to their worth.

That which is commonly spoken of in the world as moral discipline, aims continually at this
object, but with inadequate means. It is well understood that the heart, in its natural state of pride
and wilfulness, can never rightly work out what seems to be its proper destiny. Sacrifices are asked
of it, which it obstinately refuses to render. It is expected to bear burdens wliich it indignantly casts
off. Truths are proposed for its acceptance ; but instead of them, it fosters prejudices and errors.
Kindly affections and sympathies soothe it for a season, and in a narrow circle ; but change the scene,
and it is maddened with passions as selfish as t!iey are turbulent.

Reason and experience are amply sufficient to convince mankind that some vast change must be
wrought in the heart before it can be made cheerfully obedient to all the calls of duty. It is this
conviction which has urged civilized nations to make so many experiments with systems of education.
Whether spoken of or not, the first object of these systems is to overcome the multiplied resistances,
which every congregation of human beings offers to general improvement. The greater or less success
of the effort made, is determined by the conquests over individual obstinacy, or the supply of energy
in some essential but defective personal virtue. Every human heart, when fairly studied, exlnl)its
some disorder, either retarding its proper movements, or accelerating them into unequal and unhealthy
action. Whether a watch gain or lose, it is equally certain that there is something wrong with its
works, and to correct the evil they must be taken to pieces.

It is on the improvement of social character that the happiness of the world depends ; but no
improvement of this kind has ever been accom])lished without the employment of a powertul corrective
influence. In some cases the change has only followed on the terrible explosions of revolution. In
others, it has sprung from the beneficent energies of peace, and the grave control of advancing science.
But in both instances, force has been exercised on the hearts of men. They have suffered violence,
more or less, according to circumstances ; the breaking up of old prejudices, evil customs, base and
sensual superstitions, being, in reality, the breaking of the hearts which fostered them, and thus
preparing those same hearts to receive the seeds of truth and virtue.

The grander capabilities and mysteries of spiritual nature involve profounder necessities. To sow
the seeds of eternal life in a human heart must be the work of God only : to prepare it to receive
the seed must be equally his work ; but if really subjected to the operation of his grace, it is with
no superficial or partial change that it will leave his hand. Broken as to its wilfulness, cleansed as to
its impurity, the fire of the divine Spirit burning up all the dross of evil memories, it now possesses
the capabilities of an emancipated and purified nature, and awaits the gift of the wonderful lite for
which it is thus prepared.

Hence there is an excellency 'n the humbled and broken heart to which the jfroud.'sL can make



- 4 PREFATORY REMARKS.

no pretension. Let the latter be eiulowed with the best di.<positions attainable by unassisted nature,
there will be hindrances to their working, perceptible to itself, and felt, not merely as occasional
interniptions to a free choice of good, but as an insurmountable obstacle both to action and resolve.

And this is a necessary condition of that imperfect moral state, with which the best of men,
nnrenched by the }xnver of God's Spirit, must remain content. But it happily ceases to be a
condition in "our niond state immediately on the accomplishment of the design meditated by divine
grace. Wenknes.s imperfection, irresolution, there may still be, and that with their manifold
complications ; but' all these together do not constitute a necessity. They are conquerable. Not so
the moral disease of the natural heart. Against this the will strives only to be, again and again,
evaded or overcome. However admirable the personal character, looking at it from any standing
place in the world, and on the outside, — however attractive of love and sympathy the fruits of kindly
and generous dit^positions, the subtle poison of innate sin will sooner or later betray its virulence, and
render all the promises of virtue and happiness abortive.

When the struggles of a man, humbled and sanctified by God, are compared with the uncertain
efforts of one dei)endent still upon his mere natural vigour, it only requires freedom from irreligious
l)rejndice to let us discover, with startling clearness, the excellency of a broken heart. There is a
iieauty in the gentle, unselfish spirit, manifested in such a heart which no worldly temper can possess.
There is a force and energy in it which show how^ wisely it has forgone all its own pretensions to
foodness or merit for the honour which comes from God only ; from God who when he humbles by
his trrace, alwavs exalts and dignifies by his love.

H. S.



THE ACCEPTABLE SACRIFICE;

OB,

THE EXCELLENCY OF A BEOKEN HEAET:

SHOWING THE NATURE, SIGNS, AND PROPER EFFECTS OF A CONTRITE SPIRIT.
WITH A PREFACE PREFIXED THEREUNTO BY AN EMINENT MINISTER OF THE GOSPEL IN LONDON.



A PREFACE TO THE READER.



The author of the ensuing discourse, now with
God, reaping the fruit of all his labour, diligence,
and success in his Master's service, did experience
in himself, through the grace of God, the nature,
excellency, and comfort of a truly broken and con-
trite spirit ; so that what is here written is but a
transcript out of his own heart: for God, who had
much work for him to do, was still hewing and
hammering him by his word, and sometimes also
by more than ordinary temptations and desertions.
Tiie design, and also the issue thereof, through
God's goodness, was the humbling and keeping of
him low in his own eyes. The truth is, as himself
sometimes acknowledged, he always needed the
thorn in the flesh, and God in mercy sent it him,
lest under his extraordinary circumstances, he
should be exalted above measure ; which perhaps
was the evil that did more easily beset him than
any other. But the Lord was pleased to overrule
it, to work for his good, and to keep him in that
broken frame which is so acceptable unto liim, and
concerning which it is said, that " he healeth the
broken in heart, and bindeth up their wounds."
(Ps. cxlvii. 3.) And indeed it is a most necessary
qualification that should always be found in the
disciples of Christ, who are most eminent, and as
stars of the first magnitude in the firmament of the
church. Disciples in the highest form of profession
need to be thus qualified in the exercise of every
grace, and the performance of every duty. It is
that which God doth principally and more especially
look after, in all our approaches and accesses to him.
It is to him that God will look, and with him God



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