Page images

if I understand you right. Pray where did you get it then? But you go on, and say, You cannot find the name of Luther or Calvin in the Bible. Nor can I find the name of Mr. Rhine there; yet he says his hope is there. But, sir, a good hope must be within you. But you proceed : 'I am so taught to look no where else.' No where else but where? You don't tell us where. You again proceed ; ' As the lively oracles are sufficient, when I am enabled by the Holy Ghost to believe them.' But let me tell you, sir, that Christ is the object of faith; he says, the scriptures testify of him; and again, “Ye believe in God, believe also in me.” We must believe in the object the scriptures testify of; but your faith stands in the letter only. The word left upon record is to lead faith to the Son of God; the word is the record given of the Son.

You now proceed, “That there is sure standing, when upheld by God the Father in his love, the Son in his work, and the Spirit in his grace.' Pray, is this speaking as the oracles of God? No; the oracles of God tell us, our standing sure is thus: “I will go in the strength of the Lord God," and the arm, or power of the Lord shall uphold me; and again, “Be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus;" and again, “Be strengthened by the Spirit's might in the inner man.” So we are to lean on the Father's arm, be strong in the Saviour's grace, and to be strengthened by the Spirit's might in the new man, which you have left quite out of

your confession. You have attributed the grace of God all to the Spirit, contrary to the blessings of all the Apostles. Grace is God's favour freely given us in Christ, and treasured up for us in him. " It hath pleased the Father, that in him should all fulness dwell;" and out of his fulness we must receive grace for grace, for he is full of grace and truth. The Holy Ghost is called the Spirit of his grace, or of his love; because he reveals this grace to us, and sheds abroad God's love in us.

You say, that you are upheld by the Son in his work : is this speaking as the oracles of God? I answer, No. The work is finished, which his Father gave him to do. Be strong in faith, as Abraham was, and believe as Christ tells you; believe me, saith he, for the works sake. Your hope within you, as you call it, is only a creed or a confession of your faith, and a very corrupt one at best. I hope you will for the future do as you have commanded others to do; that is, speak as the oracles of God; and do not say, I am upheld by the Father in his love, the Son in his work, and the Spirit in his


of Lord Jesus Christ, the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Ghost, be with me, and uphold me; and then, but not till then, will you speak as the oracles of God. You next go on, saying, that is, speaking of your confused ideas of the most Holy Trinity, that your standing, as before cited, is in these three faithful in covenant, unchangeable in nature, unalterable in purpose,



uncontrollable in his providences; and all these attributes to be engaged in the behalf of his chosen people; of which number, not one can be lost, or by any means perish at last. Sir, the unchangeableness of God in his nature, causes him to be unchangeable in his purpose, and unchangeable in his providence; for a being that is unalterable in himself, is the same in his purpose, and cannot be changed by his creatures : this is no more than one attribute; namely, the immutability of God. Thus, sir, you have jumbled the doctrine of the Trinity into what you call the engaged attributes of God; and it amounts to no more than the immutability of him. This is all that you can bring out of the ever-adorable Trinity: this therefore is not speaking as the oracles of God; consequently he is not glorified. But you proceed; “I am convinced, that many of them (that is, of God's people, if I understand you right] have been brought low by and for their sins; but not to satisfy justice, or make an atonement, but to bring them to their right mind and to their right place.' If a person is by sin brought low, he feels the fear of death, and hell, and is in bondage to them; but he is not brought to his right mind, nor to his right place, till the Holy Ghost delivers him.

says Paul, “have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear;" but we have received the spirit of love, and of a sound mind : In this you have not spoken as the oracles of God; consequently he is not glorified. You proceed further,



[blocks in formation]

and I follow you : That they are brought to their right mind and place to make a proper use of the advocasy of Christ. Pray, what is advocasy? I never read of the word advocasy in the bible, no nor in any dictionary; therefore this is not speaking as the oracles of God; this is a very rotten part of your creed; for if a sinner is brought low for sin, it is that he may fly to the atonement for pardon and peace; but the advocateship of Jesus is to be applied to, when the law or Satan accuse, either before or after justification has taken place. You likewise say, that I also am taught by the scriptures, (not by the Holy Ghost who is to guide us into all truth,] that it is in time they are separated by his grace; to be a people to himself, and not to be numbered among the nations among whom they sojourn.' I read, that from all eternity their number and names were written in the Lamb's book of life ; and that the others have their names written in the dust; and thus speak the oracles of God. You go on, that when these are called, but you don't tell us how, that they receive a new language; but you don't tell us what, which the world cannot understand; but you don't tell us why, and that such are pilgrims; but you don't tell us how, and strangers; but you never tell us in what sense. But you say, the country to which they go is now realized by faith; which you go on to explain thus, if it has any meaning at all : 'And of the fruits, which grow on that tree, the root, and they as branches in

[ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors]

him, grafted in, and drawing sap from the blessed root Christ Jesus, the fruit holiness, and the end everlasting life. Now, sir, in this you have not spoken as the oracles of God; if you had, you would have described the Holy Ghost's operations, and have owned that the Spirit is an earnest of our future inheritance, which you call a land realized by faith, and that we derive life from Christ the root of David, by faith; and so pass from death to life by believing, and not call the fruit holiness, for God is holiness : but you would have spoken as Paul did, namely, that believers have their fruit unto holiness; mark that, unto holiness. The fruits of the Spirit are one thing; fruit unto holiness is fruit produced by the Spirit unto God, who is holiness itself. Here you have not spoken as the oracles of God; therefore God is not glorified. You

say, it is necessary for such, that is, the saints as I suppose, or the world I don't know which, that they should shew forth the praises of him who hath called them out of darkness into marvellous light. But who are they? I read that a preacher is to be eyes to the blind; and Christ says,

if the eye, or the preacher, be singly directed, all the whole mystical body, which he is the leader of, and the eye too, shall be full of light: for he is to be God's candle, to give light to all that are in the house. Now many at Sunbury declare this your letter to be written in a Christian spirit, and to be sound doctrine; and I will prove that there

« PreviousContinue »