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event, when we had disposed ourselves to reception of the blessing, as we were of our friend or parents, We all profess that God is almighty, that all his promises are certain ; and yet, when it comes to a pinch, we find that man to be more confident that hath ten thousand pounds in his purse, than he that reads God's promises over ten thousand times. “ Men of a common spirit, (saith St. Chrysostom,) of an ordinary sanctity, will not steal, or kill, or lie, or commit adultery; but it requires a rare faith, and a sublimity of pious affections, to believe that God will work a deliverance which to me seems impossible." And indeed St. Chrysostom hit upon the right. He had need be a good man, and love God well, that puts his trust in him : for those we love we are most apt to trust. And although trust and confidence is sometimes founded upon experience, yet it is also begotten and increased by love, as often as by reason and discourse. And to this purpose it was excellently said by St. Basil, “ that the knowledge which one man learneth of another is made perfect by continual use and exercise; but that which through the grace of God is ingrafted in the mind of man, is made absolute by justice, gentleness, and charity." So that if you are willing even in death not only to confess the articles, but in affliction and death to trust the promises ; if in the lowest nakedness of poverty you can cherish yourselves with the expectation of God's promises and dispensation, being as confident of food and raiment, and deliverance or support, when all is in God's hand, as you are when it is in your own ; if you can be cheerful in a storm, smile when the world frowns, be content in the midst of spiritual desertions and anguish of spirit, expecting all
should work together for the best, according to the promise; if you can strengthen yourselves in God when you are weakest, believe when you see no hope, and entertain no jealousies or suspicions of God, though you see nothing to make you confident; then, and then only you have faith, which in conjunction with its other parts is able to save your souls. For in this precise duty of trusting God there are the rays of hope, and great proportions of charity and resignation.
17. The sum is that pious and most Christian sentence of the author of the Ordinary Gloss : “To believe in God through Jesus Christ is, by believing to love him, to adhere to him, to be united to him by.charity and obedience, and to be incorporated into Christ's mystical body in the communion of saints.”! I conclude this with a collection of certain excellent words of St. Paul, highly to the present purpose: 'Examine yourselves, brethren,whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves.' Well, but how? · Know you not your own selves how that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be reprobates ?'? There is the touchstone of faith. If Jesus Christ dwells in us, then we are true believers; if he does not, we are reprobates, we have no faith. But how shall we know whether Christ be in us or not ? St. Paul tells us that too: “If Christ be in you, the body is dead, by reason of sin; but the Spirit is life, because of righteousness.' 3 That is the Christian's mark, and the cha
Credere in Deum est, credendo amare, credendo diligere, credendo in eum ire, et membris ejus incorporari. Gloss. Ord. in Rom. iv.-" To believe in God is by believing to love him, by believing to choose him, by believing to go to him, and to be incorporated in his members." * 2 Cor. xiii. 5. Rom. viii. 19.
racteristic of a true believer; a' death unto sin,' and 'a living unto righteousness;'' a mortified body,' and ' a quickened spirit.' This is plain enough, and by this we see what we must trust to. A man of a wicked life does in vain hope to be saved by his faith ; for indeed his faith is but equivocal and dead, which as to his purpose is just none at all : and therefore let him no more deceive himself; for (that I may still use the words of St. Paul) • this is a faithful saying, and these things I will that thou affirm constantly, that they which have believed in God might be careful to maintain good works :'' for such, and such only, in the great scrutiny for faith in the day of doom, shall have their portion in the bosom of' faithful Abraham.'
() eternal God, fountain of all truth and holiness, in whom to believe is life eternal, let thy grace descend with a mighty power into my soul, beating down every strong hold and vainer imagination, and bringing every proud thought and my confident and ignorant understanding into the obedience of Jesus. Take from me all disobedience and refractoriness of spirit, all ambition, and private and baser interests : remove from me all prejudice and weakness of persuasion ; that I may wholly resign my understanding to the persuasions of Christianity, acknowledging thee to be the principle of truth, and thy word the measure of knowledge, and thy laws the rule of my life, and thy promises the satisfaction of my hopes, and an union with thee to be the consummation of charity in the fruition of glory. Amen.
| Titus, iii.
II. Holy Jesus, make me to acknowledge thee to be my Lord and Master, and myself a servant and disciple of thy holy discipline and institution : let me love to sit at thy feet, and suck in with my ears and heart the sweetness of thy holy sermons. Let my soul be shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace, with a peaceable and docile disposition. Give me great boldness in the public confession of thy name and the truth of thy.gospel, in despite of all hostilities and temptations. And grant I may always remember that thy name is called upon me, and I may so behave myself, that I neither give scandal to others, nor cause disreputation to the honour of religion ; but that thou mayest be glorified in me, and I by thy mercies, after a strict observance of all thy holy laws of Christianity. Amen.
III. O holy and ever-blessed Spirit, let thy gracious influences be the perpetual guide of my rational faculties. Inspire me with wisdom and knowledge, spiritual understanding, and a holy faith ; and sanctify my faith, that it may rise up to the confidence of hope, and the adherences of charity, and be fruitful in a holy conversation. Mortify in me all peevishness and pride of spirit, all heretical dispositions, and whatsoever is contrary to sound doctrine; that when the eternal Son of God, the author and finisher of our faith, shall come to make scrutiny and an inquest for faith, I may receive the promises laid up for them that believe in the Lord Jesus, and wait for his coming in holiness and purity : to whom with the Father and Thee, O blessed Spirit, be all honour and eternal adoration paid, with all sanctity and joy and eucharist, now and for ever. Amen.
SECTION XI. Of Christ's going to Jerusalem to the Passover the
first time after his Manifestation, and what followed till the expiration of the office of John the Baptist.
1. IMMEDIATELY after this miracle, Jesus abode a few days in Capernaum, but because of the approach of the great feast of passover he ascended 10 Jerusalem. And the first public act of record that he did was, an act of holy zeal and religion in behalf of the honour of the temple. For divers merchants and exchangers of money made the temple to be the market and the bank, and brought beasts thither to be sold for sacrifice against the great paschal solemnity. At the sight of which, Jesus, being moved with zeal and indignation, 'made a whip of cords, and drave the beasts out of the temple, overthrew the accounting tables, and commanded them that sold the doves to take them from thence.' For his anger was holy, and be would mingle no injury with it; and therefore the doves, which if let loose would be detrimental to the owners, he caused to be fairly removed : and published the religion of holy places, establishing their sacredness for ever by his first gospelsermon that he made at Jerusalem. "Take these things hence: make not my Father's house a house of merchandise;' for it shall be called a house of prayer to all nations. And being required to give a'sign' of his vocation, (for this, being an action like the religion of the zealots among the Jews, if it were not attested by something extraordinary, might be abused into an excess of liberty, he only