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foundation-stone; and meet together to wait upon, and worship the Father, in the light and Spirit which they have received from him. This is the holy church, or_living assembly of the New Testament; blessed are they that are of it! For about this church is the wall of salvation; and they that are added by God's Spirit and power to this church, and abide in it, Thall certainly be saved.
XIV. Concerning the Way to Salvation. Quest. Which is the certain and infallible way to salvation ?
Answ. It is a new and living way; it is such a way as none but the living can walk in. It is an holy way, which none but the cleansed, the ransomed, the redeemed of the Lord, can set one step in. The way, the life, and the truth are all one; blessed are they that find it, and walk in it! In plain and express terms, it is the Lord Jesus, the light of the Lord Jesus, the life of the Lord Jesus, the Spirit of the Lord Jesus, the truth as it is in him, his wisdom, his power, he himself, the covenant or holy limit between God and the soul. He that comes into him, comes into the way; he that abides in him, abides in the way; he that walks in him, walks in the way. He that comes to his light, his life, his Spirit, his truth in the inward parts, comes to him ; he that abides therein, abides in him ; he that walks therein, walks in him: and he that walks out of the light and leadings of his Spirit, let him walk in what form he will, yet he walks not in
him the way.
XV. Concerning Christ's faving the Soul. Quest. How doth Christ Save the soul?
Answ. By visiting inwardly, knocking inwardly, appearing inwardly, causing the light of life to thine inwardly, and to enlightening and quickening inwardly, breaking the strength of the enemy inwardly, and bringing out of the region and shadow of darkness inwardly, into the region and path of light. By the light and power of his Spirit he begets a child of light; which child of light he brings out of Egypt, the dark land; out of Sodom, the filthy unclean land; out of Babylon, the land and city of confusion (where the Spirit of the living God, and the holy order of life, and his precious government in the heart, is not so much as known), and brings him into the light, where he and his Father dwells. And this child of light is not of the nature of darkness, but light in the Lord, and walks in the light, as he is in the light; and by the further shining and working of the light and life in him, he preserves and saves him daily more and more.
XVI. Concerning Regeneration, or the New-Birth. Queft. What is regeneration, or the new-birth?
Anfw. It is an inward change, by the Spirit and power of the living God, into his own nature. It is a being begotten of his Spirit, born of his Spirit; begotten into, and born of the very nature of his Spirit. (That which is born of the Spirit, is Spirit, John iii.) It is not every change of mind which is the right change ; but only that which God, by the very same power wherewith he raised our Lord Jesus Chrift from the in the hearts of those whom he visits; who are sensible of, receive, and are subject to his inward life, light, and power.
XVII. Concerning true Holiness. Quest. What is true holiness?
Answ. That holy nature, and those holy actions, which arise from the holy root; all else are but imitations of holiness, not the true holiness. The tree must be made good first, and then the fruit will be good also. There are many likenesses of the true holiness up and down in several professions ; but there is no real holiness to be found, nor righteousness neither, but in the trees of God's planting, in the branches which are by him ingrafted into the true vine and olive-tree, whose strength of virtue and holiness lies in the fap, which they daily receive from him.
XVIII. Concerning Christ's Works outwardly in the Days of his Flesh,
and inwardly in the Day and inward Shining of the Light of his Spirit in the Heart.
Quest. Which are greater, the works which Christ did outwardly on the bodies of men in the days of his flesh, or which he doth inwardly in mens minds and spirits by the powerful appearance and operation of his Spirit? Because Christ said, the works that he did, those that believed on bim should do, and greater also, because he went to the Father, John xiv, 12.
Answ. Doubtless to reach to the soul, and quicken the soul, and raise the soul out of the grave of death, and cure the blindness, deafness, hardness, and diseases of the soul, is greater than the outward, and was signified by the outward.
XIX. Concerning the roke, or Cross of Christ. Quest. What is the yoke or cross of Christ?
It Answ. It is inward, as that which is to be crucified is chiefly inward. is that gift of God, that light of his Spirit, which is contrary to the darkness, contrary to all that is corrupt; which wills and wars against it; and being received, subjected to, and borne patiently, takes away the life of the Aesh, the will and wisdom of the flesh, and all the subtil reasonings and devices of the Aeshly part; and so that languishes and dies, and God's plant is eased of it; and the soul abiding under this cross, comes into the true, pure, and perfect liberty, where it hath scope unto holiness, freedom unto righteousness, and is in strait bonds and holy chains from all liberty to the flesh, and from all unholiness and unrighteousness of every kind.
XX. Concerning making our Calling and Election sure. Quest. How may a man make bis calling and election sure ?
Answ. By making the gift of God sure to him; by making that sure to him wherein his calling and election is. For the choice is of the seed, the holy seed, the inward seed, the feed of God's Spirit, and of the creature as joined to the feed, God would have none to perish; but would have all come to the knowledge of Christ the truth, who is the seed, in whom the election stands : and his holy advice to men is, whom he begins to call and to lead towards the election, to make their calling and election sure. So that the way of making the calling and election sure is, to make the gift fure, the seed sure, the leaven sure, the pearl sure, which God will never reject, nor any that are found in true union with it, and in the love and obedience of it. Oh! therefore, as God visits with power (with his powerful gift) and as thou receivest power, dominion, and authority over sin (for in this gift is God's dominion and authority revealed) be faithful to the gift, be faithful to the power, give up to the truth in the inward parts, come into it, dwell in it, that thou mayst feel its virtue and delivering nature from every enslaving and embondaging thing, and then stand fast in the liberty wherewith Christ the Lord (by the life, virtue, and power of his truth) sets thee free. And so here thou wilt read thy calling, and read thy election day by day; and find them sealed, and sure to thee, in that truth, in that gift, in that heavenly light, in that holy seed, which came from God, and is of him, and which he delights to own, and will never reject.
XXI. Concerning Prayer. Quest. What is the true prayer ?
Answ. The breathings which arise from the true birth, from the living sense which God gives to the true birth; these are the true prayer. There is a Spirit of prayer and fupplication given by God to his children to wrestle and prevail with him by. All prayer that arises from, and is given by, that Spirit, is true prayer ; all other prayer is not right and true, but at best but an i.nitation of the true. We know not what to pray for as we ought; but the Spirit maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered. VOL. II.
Mark; the very groanings that come from God's Spirit, from his breathing and work upon the heart, are right prayers in God's sight; but other sighs and groans are not so.
XXII. Concerning Repentance. Quest. Wbich is the true repentance ?
Answ. That which Christ gives, whom God hath exalted to be the prince and Saviour, to give repentance and forgiveness of sins, Aets v. 31. It is not in man's power to repent; his heart is hard and impenitent. It is God's power which melteth, tendereth, and changeth the heart. So that there is a great difference between the fenfe and forrow of man's nature, and the fenfe and sorrow which God gives to the heart which he renews and changes. The one is of an earthly, the other of a heavenly, nature. The one is like the early dew, or morning cloud, it soon passeth away; the other is written in the new heart, and abideth. So that in it there is a real sorrow and mourning over the corrupt nature, and all the dead works of the flesh, and a turning from them, and meddling no more with them. This is the repentance of the renewed-ones, which is the gift of the Lord Jesus Christ unto them, and is a godly forrow for sin not to be repented of.
XXIII. Concerning Faith. Quest. What is the true faith?
Answ. It is a belief in the power which faves, from a true sense and experience of it in the heart. For the power which faves must first manifest itself, before it can be believed in; and how doth it manifest itself, but by shining in the heart, which hath been darkened by transgression, to open the eye of the understanding, which the god of the world hath blinded, and to unstop the deaf ear, and so it begets and creates somewhat capable to receive its further manifestation. The scripture speaks of a new creation in Christ. Indeed all true believers are so: and they have the ability, the faculty, the power of believing from him who creates them anew.
There is that which is called faith in unregenerate men; but that is not the faith I am now speaking of, but that which is the gift of God to his own birth, to his own begotten. To you it is given not only to believe, &c. Phil. i. 29. Mark:
is given to believe. Oh! this holy gift ! this faith of the new-birth is the faith which pleaseth God, prevaileth with him, purifieth the heart to which it is given, giveth access to God, interest in his power and promises, and victory over the worldly nature, and over all the soul's enemies. Blessed be the Lord for bestowing and increasing it in the hearts of his children.
XXIV. Concerning Obedience. Queft. Wbat is obedience ?
Answer. The obedience which flows from the true understanding of God's will, and from the holy nature which he begets in the heart. It is the obedience which flows from true fense, true understanding, and true faith. There is no birth can believe aright but one; nor is there any birth can obey aright, but that birth which believes aright. The true believing is from the quickening virtue of God's Spirit (all other faith is but dead faith); and the true obedience is in the newness of the Spirit, Rom. vi. 4. and vii. 6. Man may strive to understand and obey all his days; but he can do neither, but as he is quickened, taught, and enabled of the Lord. Teach me, O Lord, the way of thy statutes, Psal. cxix. 33. There is a mystical path of life. The way of wisdom, the way of holiness, the holy skill of obeying the truth, is hid from all living, from all mankind, but such as are begotten and brought up by him in the holy skill and mystery of subjection to the Lord. Thy people shall be a willing people in the day of thy power. It is the power of God that works the will in the heart, and the same power works to do alfo; and none can learn either to will or to do aright, but as they come to be acquainted with that power, joined to that power, and feel that power working in them. And here, in this power, to this new-birth, faith and the holy obedience are as natural, as unbelief and disobedience are to the birth of 'the flesh. It is frequently and abundantly experienced by his holy birth, by the child of his begetting. Blessed be the name of the Lord.
XXV. Concerning Justification. Quest. What is justification, or how is a man justified in the fight of God?
Answ. By a true sense of, and faith in, that which justifies; which is the Spirit, the life, the water, the blood, the virtue, the power of the Lord Jesus. All these are one in nature, and they go together. Man is sinful naturally, fallen from God, found a transgressor against him. Now he needs justification from his sins, and he needs justification in respect of what God hath intrusted him with, and requires of him ; and in the newbirth, and jointing to the Spirit of the Lord Jesus Christ, he meets with both. Being quickened by his Holy Spirit, turned from the darkness, coming into the light, and walking in the light; there his fins are done away, blotted out, as if they had never been, for his name's fake; and there he receiveth a new ability, a new heart, a new Spirit, yea, the Spirit of the living God, to quicken him, and work in him; and whatever he doth in this Spirit (or rather what God doth by him, in and through this Spirit) is justified, owned, and accepted. God 'finds no fault in any of the fruits of Ee 2