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but shine forth in such amazing Brightness before the Face of such as affiliated them, and made no account of their La. bours, that they, repenting and groan. ing for Anguish of Spirit, shall say within themselves, These are they, which we had sometime in derision, and a Proverb of Reproach. We Fools accounted their Life Madness, and their End to be with. out Honour: But how, for their eminent Wisdom, are they numbred among the Children of God; and, whilst our more than brutish Folly condemns us to everJasting Torments, is their Lot among the Saints
EZE K. 33. 11. As I live, faith the Lord God,
I have no pleasure in the Death of the Wicked ; but that the Wicked turn from his way, and live : Turn ye, Turn ye from your evil ways, for why will ye die, O House of Israel?
F all the glorious Attributes and
Perfections of our Maker, none ro frequently unfolds its excellent Beauty to us in the sacred Oracles, as this of Mercy. 'Twas by this Name, that God, E 2
before the numberless Host of Heaven, the glorious Battalions of attending Angels upon Mount Sinai, most folemn
ly proclaim'd himself to his Servant Exod. 34. Moses. The Lord, says he, The Lord
6. God, merciful and gracious. And the whole Divine Song is nothing else, but a lovely Representation of it by all the Flowers and Delicacies of the most exalted Poetry. Nay, 'cis so frequently inculcated, that (as an ingenious Author speaks) Were it not for the Mystery of the Thing, and that there is no Tautology in Love, the Scriptures would seem chargeable with vain Repetitions. But though the Holy Ora: cles álmost in every page speak to us in the comfortable and ravishing Voice of Mercy ; yet they no where do this more emphatically, than in the Words of
my Text: For though God is not a Man, that he should lie, neither the Son of Man, that he should repent, but when he hath said, he will assuredly do it; and when he hath spoken, he will infallibly make it good ; yet He is not contented with these moft folemni, innumerable, and most affectionate Declarations of his abundant Goodness"; but here, in a miraculous' and most
aftonishing Condescension to the Infirmities of his Creatures, and that the broken and contrite Spirit may have the surelt Word of Promise that can possibly be given it, vouchsafes even to interpose his Oath, and as solemnly to fwear, the same thing. As I live, faith the Lord God, I have no pleasure in the Death of the Wicked; but that the Wicked turn from his way, and live : Turn
ye, Turn ye from your Evil Ways ; for why will ye die, O House of Israel
In discoursing upon which words, I shalt endeavour, I. To make good this Proposition,
That God in his infinite Mercy, offers to all the Children of Men, Grace sufficient for their Conversion and Salvation. II. Toanswer some Objections, that have been raised against it. And, III. I sbalf infer from the wholė, and conclude.
1. i ihall endeavour to make good this Proposition, That God in his Infinite Mercy, offers to all the Children of Men, Grace sufficient for their Converfion and Salvation. And this I shall do,
1. From the Nature of the New Covenant.
2. From those manifold Calls and Invitations, and those Pathetical and most affe&ionate Protestations and Promisés, which God makes to Sinners. And,
3. From plain and express Texts of Scripture.
1. From the Nature of the New Covenant. Before the Breach indeed of the First Covenant, or the Shameless, inexcusable Transgression of Adam in Paradise, we stood in no need of this Supernatural Assistance. The Soul of Man was healthful and strong, and girded about with Power. Her Locks were unlhorn, her Wings unclipt, and she could easily bear her self up in the purer Air, above the Attractions and Enchantments of Sensible Objects, and converse freely with God. He could, upon the Stock of his Natural Abilities, travel without weariness in the Paths of Vertue; yea, (like his elder Brethren above) continually run with Chearfulness the Ways of Gods Command