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have got nothing of him favingly. If you have got a faving fight of him, then you will defire more and more, and ftill more, till you fee him face to face in Immanuel's land. The difpofition of thefe that have attained to a fight of Chrift, and apprehended him by faith, is examplified by the apostle Paul, Phil. iii. 12, 13, 14. It is trange, as if they had attained nothing, apprehended nothing, in comparifon of what they afpired after and would be at: "Not as though I had already attained; but I follow after, if that I may apprehend that for which I am apprehended of Chrift." And again, "I count not myfelf to have apprehended; but this one thing I do, forgetting thofe things that are behind, and reaching forth to thofe things that are before, I prefs toward the mark, for the prize of the high calling of God in Chrift Jefus." It is poffible, that unfound profeffors may fancy they have attained much, and yet have attained nothing; and refting on their attainments, they reft upon nothing but a fhadow. It is poffible that found believers may judge they have attained nothing, tho' yet they have attained much; and hence neglecting their attainments, they press after more and more of Christ. As Paul here, "I count not myself to have attained; I count not myfelf to have apprehended." What count you of your attainments, man, when the great apoftle Paul counts nothing of his, though he was one of the moft clearly enlightened, and highly privileged men in the world? Happy is that foul who has attained the knowledge of Chrift, and yet is as far from thinking that he knows, or has attained as much as may fuffice him, that he rather counts as if he knew nothing, or had attained nothing; and therefore preffes after more of Chrift. O for the other fight of him! Q for the other meeting with him! O for another communion! another blink of his beauty and glance of his glo. ry. Thus the happy woman counts not herfelf to have feen or attained enough of Christ, but longs for another fight. It is an excellent mark of a meeting with Christ, to be longing for more and more of Chrift here, and for full vifion of him in the higher house, and to be in a cafe practically to discover this in an examplary commendation of Chrift to others; while it is not only the
matter of your religious talk, fignifying only, Go fee him, but the import of your examplary walk; Come fee a man that told me all things that ever I did: Is not this the Chrift?
Ufe 3. Another Ufe fhould be by way of Exhortation. And our exhortation fhall be tendered, 1. To believers, who have got a difcovery of Chrift. 2. To unbelievers, who are yet firangers to him.
Ift, To you, believers, who have got a faving difcovery of Chrift working these effects upon you, leading you to condemn and debafe yourfelves to the loweft, and to commend and exalt Chrift to the higheft. O let me exhort you to a walk fuitable to fuch a meeting with Chrift; that is, 1. To a humble walk, like one to whom Chrift hath told all things that ever you did. 2. To a holy walk, like one that would commend and exalt a holy Jefus, faying, Come fee a man that hath fo and fo fpoken to me: Is not this the Chrift?
[1.] I would exhort you to a humble walk. O believer, hath he given you a fight of yourself, and of your own vilenefs and bafenefs, "Walk humbly with thy God:" and, in order to this, ftill keep the glafs before your eye, wherein he hath difcovered you to yourself. There are feveral glaffes wherein the faints behold themselves, which makes them have low thoughts of themfelves.
1. The looking-glafs of the law of God, which difcovers to them the vileness of their nature, thoughts, defires, and affections: When the law comes, fin revives. The law is a light by which all things are reproved and made manifeft, Eph. v. 13. Keep this glass before your eye, even you that are wholly delivered from the law as a covenant of works, yet make conftant ufe of it as a light; both a light to your head, to inform and convince you of your fin and wickednefs; and a light to your feet, to direct you in the paths of righteoufnefs.
2. There is the glafs of a renewed underftanding and a rectified judgment that the faints fee their vilenefs in; when they have an impartial rule, and eye-falve with it, then they fee themfelves as they are. If a man be blind, I i4
he cannot fee himfelf, though he have never fo clear a glafs before him; "Take heed that the light that is in you be not darknefs," Luke xi. 35. Wherever fpiritual light and wifdom is, there is a clear fight people have of themfelves.
3. There is the glafs of Conscience, fprinkled with the blood of Chrift; this every true believer carries about with him. Whatever the understanding fees, the confcience comes and lays it at his door; and the confcience being renewed and reconciled to God, it is then God's
effenger to inform, to roufe, to arraign, and condemn. Confcience brings in all our unworthinefs and charges us with it; and then, what bafe and low thoughts have we of ourselves! Oh! I deferve to be in hell, fays the foul! I deferve no mercy at the hand of God!
4. There is the glafs of Experience, in which every faint looks on himfelf, and beholds he is vile. Why, the fad experience he hath of a treacherous backfliding heart, notwithstanding of all the love of God and Chrift manifefted in him; the fad experience of the law of the members, warring against the law of the mind, and bringing him into captivity to the law of fin and death, and making him cry many times, "O wretched man that I am! who fhall deliver me from this body of fin and death?" The fad experiences of many inward luftings, fightings, and reigning corruptions, and defperate departings from the Lord. Alas! how vile does the faint fee himself in this glafs.
5. There is the glafs of the Holiness of Gon, the glafs of his infinite pure Glory; Rev. iv. 8. 10. " When they cried, Holy, holy, holy Lord God almighty, which was, and is, and is to come; then the twenty-four elders fell down before the throne." What made Ifaiah to cry out of his uncleanness, but a view of this holy and infinitely pure glory of God. It was a view of the glorious holinefs of Chrift that made John the Baptift fay, "O! I am not worthy to floop down and unloofe the latchets of his fhoes ;" and yet he hath Chrift's teflimony, that there was not a greater prophet than he. Oh! how vile is a man in his own eyes, when he looks to himfelf in this glafs!
6. There is the glafs of the Love of GoD, and of his
grace and mercy in Chrift: we may appeal to you that have experience of it, if any thing in the world hath a greater power to humble the foul, and lay it in the duft, than this, even the confideration of the infinite love of God; "I was a blafphemer, and a perfecutor; yet I obtained mercy." O fuch a monfter of fin and wickednefs as I am, and yet I have obtained mercy! O fuch a dog, fuch a devil, and yet I obtained mercy! O Sirs, when a child of God fees the grace of God in the glass of a manifeftation, O how low does he fink in his own efteem! All the ftorms and bluftering winds will not melt a rock of ice; but when the fun-beams arife upon it, how is it then melted and thawed? Thus nothing in the world melts and thaws the hard heart fo much, as the hope and fenfe of divine love. When a child of God fees the grace of God in the glafs of a commendation, as when Chrift fays to the foul a word like that, Song iv. 7.
Thou art all fair, my love, and there is no fpot in thee.' What! O what is this that a God is faying to the like of me, the blackeft, the bafeft of all finners! O! how low does felf fink before the love and grace of God!
7. There is the glafs of the Spirit of God fhining upon the word of God, into the underftanding and the confcience, and giving light to fee into these other glaffes. As he is the Spirit of wifdom and revelation in the knowledge of Chrift, and giving the knowledge of the law of God, the holiness of God, the love and grace of God in Chrift; for the clearest eye, and the cleareft glass both, will show nothing without light; fo it is the Spirit of light that fets all these things home upon the foul, and makes it apply all to itfelf, and fo it becomes yet more vile in its own ⚫ eyes. I fhall add,
8. There is the glafs of the example of God, of God's humility, his ftupendous humility and condefcenfion. God the Father, Son, and Holy Ghoft, humbling themfelves for our good.-See how God the Father humbles himself, Pfal. cxiii. 5, 6. Who is like unto the Lord our God, who dwelleth on high; who bumbleth himself to bebold the things that are in heaven, and in the earth? It is a ftep of great condefcenfion, that he should apply himfelf in his providence to our wants and neceffities; and
efpecially, that he fhould concern himfelf fo far with finners, as to fend the Son of his love out of his bofom to redeem them.-See how God the Son humbled himself when he ftept out of his Father's bofom, out of the ivory palaces, where he was made glad from eternity; yea, tho' he was in the form of God, and thought it no robbery to to be equal with God, yet he humbled himfelf, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the crofs. The glafs of his fuffering and humiliation, wherein he ilept as far down as hell to quench the flames of infinite wrath, is a glass, indeed, wherein we may see fin to be infinitely evil, and ourselves to be ineffably vile.—See alfo how the Holy Ghost humbles himfelf; what a vast condefcenfion is it for God the Holy Ghoft, to undertake to teach fuch indocible creatures as we, to wafn fuch lepers as we, to purge fuch polluted fouls, and to dwell in our hearts and bofoms, fo full of unfavoury ftems of hell?-Hath a God, Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, given us fuch examples of humility, and shall not this move us to flep a little down the hill? O proud finner, does God humble himself in your fight, and will not you humble yourfelf before him? Can a man look into the glass of God's humility, and yet be proud?
O believers, keep thefe glaffes in your eye, and walk humbly before him, who hath fet the glafs before you, wherein you have feen your vilenefs, and hath told you all things that ever you did. Omaintain a deep and humble fenfe of your own vilenefs and bafenefs; and the rather, that fuch a fountain of fin and wickednefs remains yet within you, as endangers you of doing all the fame evils again that ever you did, even after he hath told you all things that ever you did. The body of fin and death that remains in you, will incline you to fins of all forts and fizes: furely, then, you cannot walk too humbly and circumfpe&tly. I know no extreme of felf-aba fement you can run into, but will deferve the name of pride, rather than humility.-It will be pride, and not humility, in you to deny any thing that God hath done for you in the way of grace, becaufe you are fo vile in yourfelf; that fmells as if you were not pleased that God should get all the glory, but incline that you fhould have had