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In the Words there are plainly couch'd these

Heads of Discourse, which I shall at present

infift upon.

1. That the Doctrine of the Resurrection was

the great Article which our Saviour, and his Apostles insisted upon, to prove the Truth of Christianity. We have testify'd.'

JI. That if the Doctrine of the Resurrection

be not true, the Apostles were Deceivers.

Then are we found false-Witnesses of God. III. That the Testimonies they gave of this

were plain, and full, and abundantly sufficient to quit them from that Charge. We bave testifyed of God, that be raised

up Chrift. IV. What may be the Force and Practical

Improvement of all this.

I. That the Doctrine of the Resurrection was the great Article, which our Saviour and his Apostle insisted upon, to prove the Truth of Christianity. Amongst the many Attestations which Almighty God gave of the Divinity of our Saviour's Person, and the Truth of his Mission; I think there is none so often appeald unto ; none which the Apostles lay so much stress upon (even to the staking the Credit of the whole Gospel, and their own

is.

V. 20.

Salvation) as this of his Resurrection from the Dead. Thus, when our Saviour had shown that brave Act of Courage and Zeal towards the House of Prayer, in driving the MoneyChangers out of the Temple, which they had

prophaned by their Merchandize, their Sheep, so. 2. 14. and their Oxen; the fews presently take him

to task for it, saying, What Sign Mewest thou v: 8. 18. unto us, seeing thou dost these Things? i. e.

What Commission doft thou bring with thee? What Authority haft thou to shew from God ? Or by what Miracles doft thou justify this thy bold and ralh Attempt? He bids them try añ Experiment upon him ; punish me, or put me to Death for this, and then you shall see who I am, and what Authority I have. Destroy says ke this Temple, and in three Days I will çaise it up again. He spake of the Temple of bis Body. Again, when the Pharisees desired

him to give them some Sign of his being the Mat. 12. grue Messiah, he tells them, that there all be

no Sign given unto them, but the Sign of the Prophet Fonas. That as Jonas was three days and three Nights in the W bales Belly, so fball the Son of Man be three Days and three Nights in the Heart of the Earth. Thus likewife, after he was risen and ascended; the Apostles, and those he left behind him to propagate his Religion, made it their principal Bufiness to testify, and confirm his Resurrection to the World. This St. Peter gives as the Reason why there should be a Surrogation and new Choice of an Apostle to succeed into the Room

V. 21.

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of Judas the Traytor, viz. That he might be
a Witness with them of the Refurre&tion, And Acts 1.2
a little after we are told, that with great Pow-
er the Apostles gave Witness of the Resur-
rection of Jesus Christ. And indeed, when-
ever they were put upon the Proof of any Ar-
ticle of the Christian Faith, this they always
urged as the great Argument. This is plainly
the Substance and Delign of this whole Chap-
ter. And St. Peter proves that God bath ap-Ch.17.
pointed a Day, in which he will judge the World
in Righteousness, because he bath given Assu-
rance unto all Men, in that be raised Christ
from the Dead." And again, Let all the Ch. 2.
House of Israel kraw afluredly

, that God bath
made this same Jesus; wliom ye have crucifyed,
both Lord and Christ. And in what there fol-
lows, you may read the Effect it had upon
them, they were presently transported into
an Extasie of Faith and Repentance; when
they heard it, they were pricked in their Heart,
and said unto Peter, and to the rest of the
Apostles, Men and Brethren what shall we do ? v. 37.
So constantly did the Apostles preach, and
give Testimony to the Doctrine of the Resur-
rection.

For this being the great Confirmation of our Saviour's Divinity, to disbelieve it, is in effect to renounce the whole Gospel. Remove this Foundation; say that Jesus Christ did not arise from the Dead the Third Day, and that, in Consequence thereof, there shall not be a general Resurrection, and wherein is

the

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the Christian Religion better than that of Nature, or of Moses, of Numa, or of Mabomet? Perhaps you will say, in the Purity and Perfedion of its Precepts; true; but what small Influence would the Precepts of it, be upon the depraved Nature of Man, if they were not backd with the Belief of a Resurrection from the Dead, and an everlasting World? This may be sufficient to shew, that the Doctrine of the Resurrection was the great Article of Faith inGifted upon by Christ and his Apostles.

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II. The Second Head of Discourse was this. That if the Doctrine of the Resurrection be not true, the Apostles were Deceivers. Then are we found Falle-Witnesses, Nay, I will add further, they were the greatest Deceivers that ever appeared in the World, and that for these two Reasons.

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1. Because otherwise they offered the great

eft Affront to God.
2. Because they put the greatest Cheat up-

on Men.

4

1. If the Resurrection be not true, the Apoftles offered the greatest Affront to God

j

in that they usurped his Name, and counterfeited his Authority. This they pretended to upon all Occasions, and continually bore the People in Hand, that they were commissioned, and sent by God; that they were his Coin

mands

mands which they preached, and his Cause that they managed and laboured in. Thus, when they were imprisoned for Preaching this Acts 5.28 Doctrine, and the High-Priest charged them 29. with this Accusation, saying, Did we not Araitly command you, that you should not teach in this Names and behold you bave filled "Je rusalem with this Do&trine; they unanimously answered, We ought to obey God rather than Men. The God of our Fathers raised up Jeo

, v. 30. fus, whom ye flew and hanged on a Tree, and we are Witnelles of these Things, and so is alSo the Holy Ghost

. Nay, they assumed to V: 32. themselves, the Authority of God, in the highest Acts of his Omnipotency, viz. in the

Acts 3.11 Power of Miracles. Thus, Te Men of Israel, why marvel ye at this? Or wby look ye to earnestly on us, as tho' by our own Power or Holiness, we bad made this Man to walk. The God of Abraham, and of Isaac, and of Jacob, bath glorified bis Son Jesus; and bis Name, through Faith in his Name batb made this Man Atrong, whom ye Jee and know. If then, it be an Aggravation of the Sin of a Deceiver, that he abused the Name and Authority of another ; if it be a Capital Crime to forge the Credentials of an Earthly Prince, how much more is it so to usurp the Authority, and counterfeit the Broad-Seal of Heaven? So that if the Apostles did falsify in this Matter, they did it in the highest Instance, and in the most heinous Manner possible. But this will appear further, if we consider,

12.

2. That

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