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Thirdly, Be frequenc, and diligent in reading the holy Scriptures.

When thou readest the Commands, the Promises, the Threatnings cherein contained, think God (peaks to thee in them; And God must needs be true, he cannot lie, nor de ceive

Now there is sufficient evidence that the Scripture is his Word, and written by the efpecial inspiration of his holy Spiric; and chat will appear if we consider chese chree chings.

1. The internal Light of its own perfection. The holineffe and heavenlinefse of the matcer the Majesty of the Scile ; che Consent of all the Paris; the Scope of the whole (which is to give all Glory to God) and che full discovery therein made of the only way of mans salvation and reconciliacion with God. Which is a suitable way both co Gods Glory, and mans Ne• ceffcy.

2. The many providencial accestacions and confirmations of theTruch of the things cherein concained, by real and undeniable miracles, fuch as could not be wrought but by the power of God. And surely, if thc Scripcure had been only the device of men, God would some way or ocher have disowned it ere this, as a 80

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torious abufe put upon him, and not so conAtantly have preserved it in spight of the Devil, and all his instruments, who have laboured to ba. nish it our of tbe world, and co weaken the auchoricy of it.

3. The great and wonderful efficacy of the do&trine therein delivered, to enlighten, coni vince, and humble finners; to drive them out : of themselves, and to draw them to Christ, to

conform them to the Image of God, to subdue chem co his will, to strengthen them against temptacions and corruptions, to build them up in Grace, to establish their hearts in bolinesie; and lastly, to comfort them through Faith unto salvacion,

As therefore the holy Ghost by special inspiration, was the author of the Scripture, and by extraordinary endowments was the author of the miracles wrought for its confirmation ; so also he is the author of the Faith of him chap italy and umfeignedly believes it. Yet he doch not cause us to believe by Enthufiasm without any reason or evidence, but he enlightens the understanding (removing the blindnesle and depravednefle thereof,) and news 25 the credibi. lity of the ching, and the evidence of the truth that is co be believed, and so perswades the hearc to a belief chereof. Indeed, an historical belief of che Scripture (which is true in its kind) we may come co, by racional persivasions, with

out the special Grace, or illuminacion of the Spie rit of God; but noc, that deep and firm belief, which will carry over the will effectually co God in Chrift; and captivate the whole man to the obedience of the Truih. And when such a Faith, and belief of the Scripture uschis, (altended with fanctificacion) is wrought in the soul; the effect is, a good argument; to confirm the truth, and excelency of fuch a Faith, and belief.

1, Labour' therefore to work thy heart to a high and reverent eAcem of the Word, when thou goeft to read it. We should read ic as a Lec. ter written by the band of God from Heaven unto us. It an Angel should bring us a letter from Heaven, We Thould highly value it and regard it. The Bible is a message fent from Heaven, to acquaint us with che mind of God. If we own the divine authoricy thereof, let us read ice with reverence, and due regard.

2. Beg the Spirit of God (char endiced che Scripture, that inspired, and infallibly guided and assisted the pen-men chereof) to open thy eies, to illuminate thy mind, and to encline thy heart to a full belief and perswafion chac it is the very Word of God, and to b ing over thy will to a sincere obedience, and compliance wich the will of God therein revealed.

3. Remember that all things necessary to mans salvation, are either expresly set down in

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the Scripture, or by good and necessary consequence may be deduced there-from: Unto which noching is ac any cime to be added, ei. ther by new revelacions, or traditions of men ; it being a perfect Canon, a perfect rule of Faith and life. St. John, who outlived the rest of the

Apostles, sealed up the Canon, Rev.2 2.18,19. e which was a greac mercy to the world; For

God saw whac a liberty man enclin'd coin divine things, and therefore needed to be cyed up to a rule, which here is given us. There is enough delivered in the Scripture to make us wife unto falvation, 2 Tim.3.15. What should a Christian desire more and the Apostle tels us, we ought

co give head chereco till the day-flar arise in our i hearts, that is, till we have full

communion with Chrift. For our à reward in Heaven is expressed by

on jude. the morning.star, Rev.2:28. To him that overs cometh, I will give the morning. star.

4. Take notice, that thole chings that are nec ffiry to be known, believed, and observed for salvacion, are so clearly propounded, and opened in foinc place of Scripture or other, chac not only the learned, buc che unlearned also, in

a due use of the ordinary means God hach ap:pointed, may accain unto a sufficient under fan.

ding of them. If there arise any question about 1. the true and foll sense and meaning of any Scripture, ic must be searched and knoirn by other

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places

Mr, Minion

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places thac speak more clearly. The cercain rule of iacerpreting the Scripture, is the Scripture it self. The Scripture , faies Camiro, is so penn'd, that they that bave a mind to know, maj know. They thai have a mind to wrangle, may take occasion enough of offence, and justly perish by the rebellion of their own reason, for God never in. tended (faith he,) to satisfie men of a stubborn and perverse wit. And Tertullian long before him, hach cold us, that God hath so disposed the Scripture that they that will not be satisfied might be hardened.'

5. And lasty, Remember, that the supream Judge, by which all conirove: fies of Religion are to be tried, all decrees of Councils, opinions of ancient wricers, doctrines of men, and private spirits are to be examined, in whose sentence we are to rest, can be no other chan che Holy Spirit of God speaking in and by the Scriptures; for what the Scripture faies, God {peaks by ic. Ifa.8 2“. To the Law, and to the Testimony, if

they speak not according to this word, it is be

cause there is no light in them Jolin 5.39. Search ihe Scriptures, for in theme ye think

ye

have eternal life, and they are they which testifie of me. V.44. For had ye believed Mofes, ye would have

believed me : for he wrote of me.

Alts

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