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eftablished for the certain Guidance to bring them to Heaven.

MEN of this Character; Men who refift the Truth, Seducers, deceiving, and being deceived, the Apoftle is largely animadverting upon in the Chapter of which our Text is a Part, and gives it in charge to Timothy, that he wou'd continue in those things which he had learned and was affured of, i. e. that he wou'd not fall into the innovating Spirit of those Times, but adhere ftedfaftly to that Form of found Words which he had already receiv'd; thofe pure and well-eftablish'd Doctrines which had been delivered to him under Terms of all poffible Affurance. This Charge the Apoftle enforces by two Motives, viz. the Manner of his having been inftructed; and the Nature of the Inftruction he had receiv'd; Continue in thofe things which thou haft learned and baft been affured of; knowing of whom thou haft learned them. St. Paul himself had been his Inftructor; and Timothy cou'd not but know him to be a true Apoftle of Chrift: Again Timothy had been well-principled from his Youth in Scrip

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tural

tural Knowledge; from a Child, faith the Apoftle, thou hast known the Scriptures; which are able to make thee wife unto Sal vation, through Faith which is in Chrift Jefus. A Departure therefore from the good Inftructions which he had fo early and, confequently, fo intimately imbibed, wou'd in him be much more inexcufable. The Nature of the Inftruction he had receiv'd is fully fet forth in the Words before us : In order to treat of which more particularly, it may be proper barely to obferve, THAT as the Holy Scripture is the Foundation of true Religion; foit always shares the fame Fate with it: the fame Adverfaries fet themselves to oppose both; and they always oppose them both in the fame manner. The Profane, for inftance, who are Enemies to all Religion in general, labour to undermine it, by denying the Divine Authority of the Scriptures; the Superftitious, who lay fo much 'ftrefs upon the Form of Godliness, as to neglect the Power of it; and the Enthusiasts, who wou'd fondly refolve the Whole of Religion into Vapour and Imagination, do both of them endeavour to decry the Suf

ficiency

ficiency of the Holy Scriptures; the former, by teaching for Doctrines the Commandments of Men; the latter, by impofing their own delufive Dreams for immediate Revelation from the Almighty.

WE cannot therefore do greater service to Religion than by establishing the Holy Scriptures upon that foot of Certainty and Excellency which are required to make them a fufficient Revelation of God's Will to Mankind; and this the Words of the Text will furnish out Matter for, by pointing out to us,

1. THE Divine Authority of thofe facred Writings in these Words, Ail Scripture is given by Inspiration of God.

II. THEIR Usefulness in these Words,
They are profitable for Doctrine, for
Reproof, for Correction, for Inftru-
Etion in Righteousness.

III. And Laftly, THEIR Sufficiency in thefe Words, That the Man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good Works.

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1. THEN

1. THEN the Divine Authority of the
Holy Scriptures is pointed out to us
in these Words; All Scripture is
given by Infpiration of God.

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THAT there is a God, and that God is to be worshipped, are Principles which in clearing up this Article must be taken for granted; and then it is a most neceffary Inference, That He must be worship'd in fuch a Way as is moft agreeable to his Nature and Will. Now it is very notorious, that Man is of himself unable to form any regular Syftem of Divine Worship; for if we would certainly know the Power of Human Faculties in this respect, we must form our Judgment of them from the Discoveries which were made in Religious Matters during the Times of Paganism. There were among the Heathen, Men of equal Abilities, Application and Integrity to any that have ever appear'd in Life; who labour'd, by fearching to find out God, but cou'd not find him out to any tolerable degree of Perfection.

TRUE

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TRUE indeed it is, we can now by many conclufive Chains of Reasoning carry up Things to the firft Cause; and reprefent the Almighty under Characters more worthy fo glorious a Being; but then the Light vouchfafed by the Holy Scriptures it is, that hath enlarged our Views and directed them aright; hath given our Thoughts a free Scope; hath presented many new and bright Objects to our Un derstanding; and in all refpects hath encreased our Knowledge and Capacity of Improvement in Religious Truths. It is therefore very unfair, to magnify the prefent Strength of Human Reason, in prejudice to Divine Revelation, because from Revelation, fuch its Strength was derived unto it; and in this refpect likewise it is that the Light of the Gospel fhineth in darkness, although the darkness comprehendeth it not. Now if we have receiv'd, as the Apostle argues upon another occafion, Wherefore do we boaft, as though we had not received? And to employ what we have receiv'd against that from which we did receive it, is the fame profane piece of InB 4 gratitude,

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