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ter and his real condition. It calls off his attention from his own outward virtues—which are perhaps only the instincts of humanity, or prudential deeds which bring their own reward with them-and directs his eye upon the heart, upon its volitions and affections, as compared with the demands of God's pure and holy law. It takes up his motives and desires, and subjects them all to a rigid analysis; proves them in the alembic of the gospel, and shows the man that they are but dross. It applies a test, before which all his fancied righteousness vanishes like smoke. It thus empties him of all his pride, all his confidence, all his self-reliance, and makes him feel that there is no soundness in him. It next shows him precisely what he needs, which is a “new heart and a new spirit;" the implanting of a renewed nature, the infusion of a new principle of being ; so that his choice, his preference will be directly reversed. It does not tell him that by reforming his habits, by beginning to obey God, he may gradually return to true holiness; but that all this must be the result of a changed heart, a spiritual regeneration. The issues are corrupt, because the fountain is corrupt; and a clean thing cannot be brought forth from an unclean.

It then satisfies him that this inward change it is beyond his power to accomplish, and thoroughly convinces him of his own inabiliy. He is made to recognize his utter helplessness, while be still acknowledges the justice of his condemnation. He is chained, but it it his own fault, for he voluntarily placed his hands in the manacles of Satan.

But at this point the Holy Spirit leads him to Jesus, and in him he discerns One mighty to save. He throws himself at the feet of Christ, saying, "Lord, I am blind, open mine eyes; I am corrupt, make me clean; I am lost, give me redemption !" He hears the gracious answer: “I will—be thou clean !” and he is made whole from that very hour. The Saviour lifts him from the ground, seals him in the forehead with the sign of redemption, and he goes on his way rejoicing. Now he can say, “I live ; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me. And having thus entered upon his Christian course, having " entered by the door into the sheep-fold,” he advances from strength to strength, from grace to grace, from knowledge to knowledge, till death closes his probation; and then, seeing Christ as he is; he is transformed into his glorious image.

This is the operation of the two systems which have been presented to your notice, in respect of that change which reason and Scripture declare must be wrought in the sidner before he can be restored to the favor of God.

The one merely whitens the sepulchre ; the other purifies it of its uncleanness. The one only modifies the character, and checks its grosser developments; the other transforms it.

Is it of little importance which is received and adopted ?

III. In the third and last place, how do the two systems bear upon the promotion of practical godliness ?

The answer to this question has been already in great part anticipated. If there exist a radical mistake as to what constitutes true godliness, or as to the principle from which that godliness must spring, its baleful effect must be seen in the whole style and manner of life. But we would present this point in still another light.

What are the motives by which the man who hopes to merit heaven by his own good works is prompted to obedience ?

They are low in rank, and weak in influence. It is upon the principle of a barter, by which he hopes, at the price of so much obedience, to entitle himself to the reward of heaven. This motive is prudential and selfish ; and how does it operate ? It is opposed by other motives, promising a more immediate reward, and offering gratifications far more in accordance with the natural taste than the felicity of heaven ; and so it is often overpowered and forced to yield. And the man, finding that the law of God is generally conquered by the law of sin, falls back upon the conviction that a very imperfect obedience will meet the necessity of the case, and God in his mercy will be ready to pass by his errors and defects; and so he drinks his fill of worldly pleasure, indulges his vain imaginations as far as prudence and public opinion allow; once in the week takes his seat in the house of God, occasionally gives a small fraction of his superfluous wealth to aid the Church in her heavenly mission; when he has leisure reads a chapter or two in the Scriptures, and trusts that all will come right at the last. It may be that he has an easy and quiet end, and when he is gone men speak well of him, and the monumental marble is placed over his dust, publishing to the world his princely virtues and his unsullied reputation. But what is the account which he has gone to render in to God? Of what self denials in the cause of Christ, of what inward victories over corruption, of what struggles of faith with sense, has he to tell ? Did the Spirit ever witness to him that he was born of God? Had he ever a living faith in Jesus the Saviour ?

But how is it with one who has received the spirit of adoption; who has received Christ into his heart by faith, and “lived, and moved, and had his being” in Him? The love of God, the highest of all motives, becomes the principle of his life. He does his duty, not because he hopes thereby to entitle himself to God's favor, but because “the love of God constrains him” to do it. He prefers holiness to sin, and is led on to obedience by the ruling preference of his mind. He does not ask, “What is the least that is required of me as a Christian ?" but, “How can I do most for Him who gave his life for me ?" He is never satisfied with any existing attainments, but is constantly reaching forward after a higher conformity to the image of God; and when he has done

all, he says in sorrow, “I am an unprofitable servant.”

His loftiest obedience falls so far short of what he sees to be the divine standard of excellence, as to make him feel that after all, he must trust only in the merit and righteousness of God his Saviour for acceptance and salvation.

Such is the fruit of that system, of which Christ is the Alpha and the Omega, when it is rightly understood and truly received. The doctrine may be abused, and men may say, as they did in the days of St. Paul, “I will oontinue in sin, for grace

abounds;' but never by one who knows any thing experimentally of the system of grace. The grand principle of that system is, death to sin in all its degrees and forms; and "how can they who are dead to sin, live any longer therein ?” And the dominion of sin is never radically destroyed through any other agencies than those which proceed from the cross of Christ. Satan can be dispossessed of his sovereignty only by Him who went down into the grave to meet him, and there wrenched the bloody sceptre from his hand.

Arise, then, 0 sinner, and possess thy rest. Come to the Saviour, and you shall find peace to your soul. What the law cannot do, what your own efforts cannot accomplish, he will do

Whatever may be the darkness of your mind, he will give you light; however greviously and deeply you may have fallen, he will lift you up. Come to the Saviour, with

for you.

“ All your sins against your God,

All your sins against his laws,
All your sins against his blood,
All your sins against his cause
Sins as boundless as the sea ! -
And hide them in Gethsemane !"

III. In the third and last place, how do the two systems bear upon the promotion of practical godliness ?

The answer to this question has been already in great part anticipated. If there exist a radical mistake as to what constitutes true godliness, or as to the principle from which that godliness must spring, its baleful effect must be seen in the whole style and manner of life. But we would present this point in still another light.

What are the motives by which the man who hopes to merit heaven by his own good works is prompted to obedience ?

They are low in rank, and weak in influence.

It is upon the principle of a barter, by which he hopes, at the price of so much obedience, to entitle himself to the reward of heaven. This motive is prudential and selfish ; and how does it operate ? It is opposed by other motives, promising a more immediate reward, and offering gratifications far more in accordance with the natural taste than the felicity of heaven ; and so it is often overpowered and forced to yield. And the man, finding that the law of God is generally conquered by the law of sin, falls back upon the conviction that a very imperfect obedience will meet the necessity of the case, and God in his mercy will be ready to pass by his errors and defects; and so he drinks his fill of worldly pleasure, indulges his vain imaginations as far as prudence and public opinion allow; once in the week takes his seat in the house of God, occasionally gives a small fraction of his superfluous wealth to aid the Church in her heavenly mission; when he has leisure reads a chapter or two in the Scriptures, and trusts that all will come right at the last. It may be that he has an easy and quiet end, and when he is gone men speak well of him, and the monumental marble is placed over his dust, publishing to the world his princely virtues and his unsullied reputation. But what is the account which he has gone to render in to God? Of what self denials in the cause of Christ, of what in ward victories over corruption, of what struggles of faith with sense, has he to tell ? Did the Spirit ever witness to him that he was born of God? Had he ever a living faith in Jesus the Saviour ?

But how is it with one who has received the spirit of adoption; who has received Christ into his heart by faith, and “lived, and moved, and had his being" in Him? The love of God, the highest of all motives, becomes the principle of his life. He does his duty, not because he hopes thereby to entitle himself to God's favor, but because “the love of God constrains him” to do it. He prefers holiness to sin, and is led on to obedience by the ruling preference of his mind. He does not ask, “What is the least that is required of me as a Christian ?" but, “How can I do most for Him who gave his life for me ?” He is never satisfied with any existing attainments, but is constantly reaching forward after a higher conformity to the image of God; and when he has done

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all, he says in sorrow, “I am an unprofitable servant.” His loftiest obedience falls so far short of what he sees to be the divine standard of excellence, as to make him feel that after all, be must trust only in the merit and righteousness of God his Saviour for acceptance and salvation.

Such is the fruit of that system, of which Christ is the Alpha and the Omega, when it is rightly understood and truly received. The doctrine may be abused, and men may say, as they did in the days of St. Paul, “I will oontinue in sin, for grace abounds; but never by one who knows any thing experimentally of the system of grace. The grand principle of that system is, death to sin in all its degrees and forms; and “ how can they who are dead to sin, live any longer therein ?” And the dominion of sin is never radically destroyed through any other agencies than those which proceed from the cross of Christ. Satan can be dispossessed of his sovereignty only by Him who went down into the grave to meet him, and there wrenched the bloody sceptre from his hand. Arise, then, O sinner, and possess thy rest.

Come to the Saviour, and you shall find peace to your soul. What the law cannot do, what your own efforts cannot accomplish, he will do

Whatever may be the darkness of your mind, he will give you light; however greviously and deeply you may have fallen, he will lift you up. Come to the Saviour, with

for you.

“All your sins against your God,

All your sins against his laws,
All your sins against his blood,
All your sins against his cause
Sins as boundless as the sea ! -
And hide them in Gethsemane !"

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