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ther in the state, practice, rule, end or manner of it ; nay, they who thus live, are without Christ, being aliens from the common-wealth of Israel, and strangers to the covenant of promise, having no hope, and without God, or atheists, in the world, Eph. ii. 12. (2.) It is not a legal life, either of Fewijs conformity to the ceremonial law, or of perfect conformity to the moral law : It is not that legal life of Jewish conformity to the ceremonial law, or according to the old testament difpenfation; for that ceremonial law is abrogated in Christ the substance of all the old shadows; and so that Jewish life is unprofitable and vain, yea it is damnable, and prohibited under the highest penalties, Col. ij. 20, 21. And therefore, says the apostle, Gal. v. 2. If ye be circumcised, or live according to the ceremonial law, or any other law of works, so as to expect justification thereby, Christ Jhall profit you nothing. Neither is this living to God that perfect life of conformity to the moral law, according to the old covenant of works, which required perfect, personal, and perpetual obedience, as the condition of life; and threatned death upon the least failure: I say, it is not this life neither ; for man hath become guilty, and forfeited life, and incurred death by Adam's first transgression, Rom. v. 18. By one man fin entered into the world, and death by fin, &c. Thus we are for ever incapable of that life, which Adam was capable of before the fall. It is also impracticable, because man is by nature without strength, Rom. v. 6. We have no strength to give that obedience which the covenant of works requires, because we must be redeemed from the curse thereof, and restored to the righteousness thereof, before we can be capable to do what it requires. And tho’Adam's fin and tranfgreflion were not imputed to us, as indeed it is, yet seeing every
adult person at least hath linned after the similitude of Adam's transgression, for no man liveth and finneth not; therefore he can never perform the perfect obedience therein required, and by the deeds of the law no flesh can be justified. Besides, there is no article of that covenant of works, which provided for a remedy in case of a breach; but all that the covenant of works does, is, to promise life to perfect obedience in man's own strength, and threatens death in case of failure, and so leaves the transgressor thereof under its curse. In a word, the life according to that covenant, cannot be the life here meant; because that covenant speaks nothing of Christ, or of his gospel, by whom, and by which only we can now come to this living unto God; and because this living unto God presupposes a being dead to the law, or dead to that covenant, otherwise we can never live unto God. 3. It is not a pbarifaical life of external, legal, imperfect conformity to the law, whereby we endeavour to establish a righteoufness of our own, as the Jews, Rom.ix. 31, 32, and Rom. x. 3. Many reckon an outward moral converfation to be this living unto God, whether in performing the natural duties of civility and moral honesty, or in an external performance of religious duties, such as prayer, praise, reading and hearing, waiting upon divine worship. The church of Laodicea was selfconceited; they thought they were rich and increased with goods : But behold the testimony that Christ gave them, that they were neither cold nor hot, such as God would fpue out of his mouth; yea, that they were wretched, miserable, blind and naked: That is all the testimony that he gave them, who look'd upon themselves as rich in legal righteousness and good works. This pharisaical life may be accompanied with a glorious profeffion ;
they they may profefs soundness in the faith, and disown all these legal and unsound principles, which others may have as their stated opinion; they may profess, that righteousness and justification is not by the works of the law, but by the faith of Christ, or by the works of Christ received by faith alone; they may have a lound head, but no found heart, nor a good conscience, nor faith unfeigned ; for the end of the commandment is love preceeding from these, 1 Tim. i. 5. Persons may be like the toad, that hath a precious stone in his head, but his belly is full of poison ; they may have a head full of knowledge, and a heart full of enmity; a filthy mud-wall may be garnished with fine tapestry; a rotten sepulchre may be whitened : They may have much of the matter and external form of godliness, and yet want the power and internal form thereof; a name to live, and be dead. Yea, this pharifaical life may be accompanied with many excellent gifts and common graces, and high attainments. (as well as all visible church-privileges) as we find some apostates may have, Heb. vi. 4, 5, 6. Their undersianding may be so far enlightened that they may attain to great discoveries of Christ. Balaam was called a man whose eyes were opened, and that saw the visions of the Almighty, Numb. xxiv. Their wills may be so far renewed, as to have a great many good purposes, like these who resolved to serve the Lord with all their heart, Deut. v. 27, 29. o. xxiv, 18, 21. They may be almost persuaded to be Christians; their affections may be greatly raised and enlarged; they may be raised to fome sorrow for fin, like Judas, and like Esau, who fought the blessing with tears; to some joy, like the stony.ground hearers, who received the
word with joy and pleasure, yet had no root; to some delight, like the Jews, of whom it is said, Ifai. Iviii. 2. That they fought him daily, and delighted to know his ways ; yea, to some fear and reverence, like these enemies that are said to submit themselves, Psal. Ixvi. 3. and even to some extraordinary raptures, like these who are said to taste of the beavenly gift, and to be partakers of the Holy Ghost; hereupon their life and conversation may be changed in part.. Thus many, through the knowledge of God, and of Christ, have escaped the pollutions of the world, 2 Pet. ii. 20, 21, 22. The common gifts and graces of the Spirit may warm, smooth, and wash their outward conversation; all this will not amount to this living unto God in the text. What kind of life then is this? I answer, 4. It is a spiritual life, being the action, motion, and gracious saving operation of the Spirit of God in us, and causing us to walk in his statutes, Ezek. xxxvi. 27. It is the life of a spiritual man. It is impossible for one to have a godly life, whatever to the world he may seem to have, till he be a godly person, or in a fpititual state. A man must have a state of union to Chrift by the faith of God's operation, so as, being married with this husband, he may bring forth fruit unto God. The branch of the old Adam cannot bear good fruit; it is only the true branch, planted in Christ by the Spirit of faith, that bears good fruit, Fobn xv. 4, 5., A man must be in a state of reconciliation with God, justified, pardoned, and indemnified, before God accept of any service off his hand; for two cannot walk together, or live together, unless they be agreed. God accepts no action from an enemy; but his returning to him by faith in Christ, and then begins all personal acceptance.
Men must be in a state of adoption, before it is poffible that they can be followers of God, as dear chil. dren; in a state of renovation, renewed by the Holy Ghost in the spirit of our mind. The godly man, who is in case for a godly life, is just a new creation, even the workmanship of God, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God before ordained that he should walk in them. If the heart be not right with God, a man cannot have a right life, or live unto God.
But I shall go on to inquire, 2dly, Into the scrip tural designations of this life. To give all the names that it comes under in scripture, were too large a task: I shall only fingle out some of the most notable names it gets in scripture. It is sometimes designed from God, sometimes from Chrift, sometimes from the Spirit, and sometimes from these names that import the other special qualities and properties of it. 1. Sometimes designed from God, and it is called the life of God, Epb. iv. 18. from which all natural men are alienated : This is a a wonderful name that it gets, the life of God. Who can tell what this life of God is? God lives in himself, and the believer lives in God; his life is is hid with Christ in God, Col. iii. 3. The best we can fay of it, is, that it begins in grace, and ends in glory, and is wholly of God, and in him. 2. Some: times it is designed from Christ, and so it is called a living by faith on the Son of God, Gal. ii. 20. immediately following our text ; where, when the apostle would explain what he understands by his being dead to the law, he says, I am crucified with Cbrift; and when he would explain what he understands by his living unto God, he says, Nevertheless I live, yet not ! but Christ liveth in me. Christ