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Our text also implies, that ignorance of God, and of Jesus Christ, whom he hath sent, is a state of death. Hence an apostle has said, speaking of the gentiles, or unbelievers, they are "alienated from the life of God, through the ignorance that is in them." Now can we suppose that this ignorance will eternally remain? I think not. I anticipate the glorious time when the veil which now hangs between all moral nature and eternal truth shall be removed. For God will "destroy the face of the covering and the veil that is spread over all nations." Then shall all know him from the greatest even unto the least; and then he will "forgive their iniquity, and remember their sin no more."


He who by faith and hope, or by the knowledge of God through Jesus Christ, is in the enjoyment of eternal life, is not only delivered from the gloomy idea of annihilation or non-existence, but he is also saved from the still more corroding and heart-chilling idea of never ceasing misery. However remote the period, he anticipates at once the eternal enjoyment of a happy immortality.

What a rich treasure, then, this knowledge affords the believing heart! All the riches of earth and time, all the honours which men can bestow, or all the pleasures the world can give, are not to be compared with that knowledge which is life eternal. This knowledge is suited to every age, to every circumstance and condition in life. The rich need it to teach them how to use their riches; the poor, how to support their poverty. It is needful to the learned, to prevent their being puffed up with knowledge; and to the ignorant, as a substitute for learning.It sweetens every enjoyment of life; it solaces every affliction. It saves us alike from being elated with prosperity, or from being dejected in adversity. It teaches us how to live; it equally prepares us for death. It is a present help in every time of need. In

youth, it teaches how to pursue the paths of virtue, in which alone there is peace. In middle age, it expands the soul with liberal benevolence and diffusive charity, which are so essential to the happiness and well being of society, teaching how to set good examples in the world, and especially before children, bringing them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord. It is the sweetest companion of human life while, without it, the thoughts of death, methinks, must be almost insupportable. But to the aged and infirm, when they know that their sun of life is fast hastening downwards in the west, and that in a short time they must bid adieu to the world and all the things of time and sense, how comforting it must be to know they have "a building of God, a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens!" And such knowledge is evidently contained in the scriptures, which testify of Him who is "the way, the truth, and the life."

This glorious truth, as astonishing as it may seem, is what mankind are prone either to disbelieve, or else to disregard. To some, it is too good to be true! To others, its truth does not meet their selfish dispositions; and by such, therefore, it is disregarded. While there are many, who are yet, from various causes, totally ignorant of it, who, it may be presumed, on proper evidence, would hail it with gratitude. But the number who as yet receive the truth in the love of it are comparatively few; though, we have reason to bless God, that that number is fast increasing.

What I have proposed, therefore, in these lectures, is to set forth that plan of grace and unbounded benevolence, which, as I humbly conceive, is revealed and clearly made manifest in the scriptures of divine truth. In doing which, I shall speak with all due deference to the opinions of others; not differing from any one merely for the sake of differing,

but only where I have found sufficient reasons to satisfy my own mind in so doing. But, notwithstanding I may find myself under the necessity of proceeding in a different channel from some who stand very high in the Christian world, and, what is more, to differ in some respects from the opinions of those who agree with me in my general sentiment, it shall ever be my aim to treat all men with that respect which is due to the gentleman and the Christian.But, let it be remembered, that we must all stand or fall to our own Master; and all that I ask, either of friends or enemics, on account of my sentiments, is, not to judge, censure, or condemn another man's servant; for "to his own master be standeth or falleth." I shall proceed, after this introduction, in the following manner, viz.

II. Speak of the nature and character of God, the relation in which he stands to his rational offspring, his design in the creation of moral intelligences, and the immutability of his purposes.

III. The creation of man; his original state and standing; his natural and moral faculties; together with his sin and disobedience.

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IV. Of sin; its nature and its consequences; together with the denunciations of God against his creatures; all of which must be carried into effect.

V. Of salvation. Show in what it consists, and by whom effected. The vulgar notion of satisfying an infinite dissatisfaction refuted, and the doctrine of reconciliation explained.

VI. Of the Mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, who gave himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time.

VII. The deliverance of the creature (which was made subject to vanity, not willingly, but by reason of him who subjected the same in hope) from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God.

VIII. Objections to this glorious deliverance answered; by which the cruel and unmerciful doctrine of endless misery will be completely refuted, and shown to be not a doctrine of divine revelation.*

The above will constitute the series of lectures which I have proposed to deliver (if God permit) in this place; and to which the candid and serious attention of all sincere inquirers after truth is respectfully invited.

It is presumed that no one will object to the importance which, in this discourse, thus far, has been attached to our subject; nor to the consequences resulting from a knowledge of the truth as it is in Jesus, to a certain class of people; viz. to those whom they are pleased to call real and true believers, or, in other words, the elect. But if such be the happy consequences to all who are brought to the knowledge of the truth, or to such a degree of knowledge as firmly to believe in that truth which maketh free indeed, then even on this hypothesis it shows the importance of bringing all men, if possible, to know HIM, whom to know is eternal life. However, it will be one object of these lectures to prove, that what is properly called salvation is equally sure to all, whether they now know it or not, whether they now believe it or not; because the thing to be known, or to be believed, exists in the immutable purposes of

Perhaps some may object to the harsh expression, cruel and unmerciful doctrine of endless misery! but I think they ought to be satisfied with it, unless they are able to point out some mercy in such eternal torments! And if there be no mercy in such pun ishment, then it is unmerciful; and if unmerciful, it is cruel, for if it be not cruel to inflict an unmerciful punishment, I wish some one would point out to me in what cruelty consists. Human governments, I admit, sometimes inflict unmerciful punishments, without designing to be cruel (though of this I doubt its expediency); but if it were equally in their power to make a good citizen of the culprit, would they not prefer a merciful punishment that should produce the desired effect; so that they could consistently grant a pardon?

God, with whom there is no variableness nor even shadow of turning.

It is possible that some may be startled at the above idea, and feel disposed to attend no further; concluding, that if this doctrine be true, it is no matter how men live; all is equally well, let us live as we list! But, stop, my friend, not so hasty! Do you not believe in the certainty of the salvation of the elect? That is, (whatever may be your views of the doctrine of election, whether they are elected through sanctification and belief of the truth, or whether they were elected from the foundation of the world,) is there not an elect whose salvation is sure? O yes, there can be no doubt of this. And will you say from hence, it is no matter what the elect do, since they will certainly be saved? On what does the salvation of the elect depend? On their being elected? or on their being saved? If on their being saved, then it is necessary to save them, notwithstanding their being elected; but if their salvation depends wholly on their being elected, then only let us be sure of our election, and all is well; it is no matter whether we be saved or not!!!

My friendly hearers, do you like this mode of reasoning? No, I am sure you cannot. Then remem-. ber, it is no better when applied to the whole world, than it is when applied only to the elect.

Had it not been the purpose of God to save all men, I cannot see why, by his grace, Christ tasted death for every man, or that the gospel should be preached to every creature. But if this be the purpose of God, viz. to save all men, will any one say that the means of salvation, or salvation itself, are less necessary on that account?

The salvation of which the scriptures speak, which, will be shown more fully in the course of these lectures, is not a salvation in, but a salvation from sin.. Thou shalt call his name Jesus, for he shall save

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