Page images


The Book of Works.

This Book points out to us, horo our works ought to correspond and follow closely up with our faith, as the immediate or nearest fruits of this most holy faith, and also how we are to be rewarded according to our works; and there is set forth in this Work many passages and clear proofs from the Holy Scriptures, to show unto us that good works are right, good, and necessary in reference to our salvation, or for the safety of our salvation. But for power to do this Work is of Grace, and that is through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Now my friends, seeing that I have in my preceding, and succeeding Books, said so much upon saving grace and faith, therefore, •! think that it is necessary for me, and for you, that I should point out to you, what are the immediate, or nearest fruits of this most holy grace and faith: now as long as we enjoy such a degree of this most holy faith in our souls, I believe it to be this—that is peace, joy, and love, and power over all outwaid sin, and power to keep down inward sin; and when this grace and faith is given, O Lord, I know it is right within, it makes my sins then fly away—0 death thou hast lost thy sting. And again, God will require of us, good works, as fruit for the gift of this justifying faith, for what will it profit us to say in that day, Lord I have believed in thy name; I say what will it profit us then, if our works do not answer or correspond with our faith; can our faith alone save us? No, it cannot, for it is dead, being alone. (James ii. 17.) For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also. (verse 26.) Yea, a man may say, Thou hast faith, and I have works: show me thy faith without thy works, and 1 will show thee my faith by my works, for a good tree cannot bring forth eril fruit, saith our Lord, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit. Wherefore by their fruit ye shall know them: not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. Many saith the Lord will say to me in that day Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name* And in thy name have cast out devils? And in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity. (Matt. vii.) Therefore, all that profess to be Christians, should be very careful, and to try the spirits, and to examine themselves by prayer, so as to see whether they are real Christians or not: for it appears to me that by the subtilty of the devil, and giving way thereto, a man may be deceived. Now observe this, If we possess that grace and faith in our souls, so as to produce good works, then we may rely upon it that it is of God. But if it do not produce good works, then it is to be feared, that it is no more than a counterfeit faith, and without care-taking it will be likely to deceive our souls, and at last sink us into everlasting perdition. Again, If we are Christians, then let us, Let our light so shine before men, that they may see our good works, that they may glorify our Father which is in heaven. (Matt. v. 16.) Herein is my Father glorified, saith Christ, that ye bear much fruit, so shall ye be my disciples. (John xv. 8.) For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness, and unrighteousness of men, saith Saint Paul, who hold the truth in •unrighteousness. (Rom. i. 18.) For God will render to every man according to his deeds: tribulation and anguish upon every soul of man that doeth evil; but glory, honour, and peace, to every man that worketh good; for there is no respect of persons with God. (Rom. ii. 6.) And again, you have seen, and may see in my next Book, how Abraham was justified by faith, and works, when he had offered Isaac his son upon the altar. . So you see that how faith wrought with his works, and by works was faith made perfect. (James ii. 12.) Hear what Saint John saith, Hereby we do know, that we know him, if we keep his commandments. He that saith, I know him, and keepeth not his commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him. He that saith he abideth in him, ought himself also, so to walk, even as he, walked. (1 John ii. 6.) And again, He that overcometh, Saith the Lord, the same shall be clothed in white raiment, and I will not blot out his name out of the Book of life; but I will confess his name before my Father, and before his angels. (Rev. iii. 5.) .And again my friends, take our blessed Lord's word for an example; I must work the works of him that sent me, saith he, while it is day, the night cometh when no man can work. As long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world. (John ix. 4.) And thus it becometh every Christian, to pattern after Christ, as far forth as he can: 'and see my little Book called The Examples of Christ.

0, surely thou art great, 0 Lord, great in counsel, and mighty in work: for thine eyes are open upon all the ways of the sons of men, to give every one according to the fruit of his doings. (Jer. xxxii. 19.) And again, here is another plain proof of the righteous dealings of God, to the children of men, according to their works, and you may find it in the 18th of Jeremiah, At what instant, saith the Lord, I shall speak concerning a nation, and concerning a kingdom, to pluck up, and to pull down, and to destroy it, if that nation against whom I have pronounced turn from their evil, I will repent of the evil that I thought to do unto them. And again, At what instant I shall speak concerning a nation, and concerning a kingdom to build and to plant it, if it do evil in my sight, that it obey not my voice, th;n, I will repent of the good wherewith I said I would benefit them. Therefore, we plainly see, that he is a just God and Saviour, and that man shall be rewarded according to his works. And ao-ain when we come to the Lord for the remission of our sins, we must come humble and full of obedience, so as to bring forth fruits meet for repentance. (Matt. iii. 8.) For we see in this chapter, that it is not enough to talk, of the faith of Abraham without works: for we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad. Knowing therefore the terror of the Lord, we persuade men, (1 Cor. v. 10.) to refuse the evil, and to choose the good, that it may go well with him at the last; for he that doeth wrong, shall receive for the wrong which he hath done, and there is no respect of persons. (Col/iii. 25.) Therefore be ye holy, for I am holy, saith the Lord, and if ye call on the Father, who, without respect of persons, judgeth according to every man's work, pass the time of your sojourning here in fear. Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not re

deemed with corruptible things, as silver afad goldj but with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot. (1 Peter. i. 17.) And now my friends, seeing that these things are so, therefore let us not be deceived, God is not mocked, for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. For he that soweth to his flesh, shall of the flesh reap corruption: but he that soweth to the spirit shall of the spirit reap life everlasting. (Gal. vi. 7.). And let us not be weary in well-doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not. (verse 7.) And behold, I come quickly, saith the Lord, and my reward is with me, to give every man according as his work shall be. (Rev. xxii. 12.) And again, there shall in no wise enter into the holy city any thing that defileth, neither whatsoever worketh abomination, or maketh a lie; but they which are written in the Lamb's book of life. (xxi. 27.) And I saw, saith St. John, a great white throne, and him that sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away; and there was found no place for them. And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God: and the books were opened; and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of these things which were written in the books according to their works. And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them; and they were judged every man according to their works. And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire. (Rev. xx. 11.) And now, my friends, we may plainly see by the holy Scriptures, the will, and the ways of God towards man; therefore, let us, by his help, be careful, so as to maintain. good wooks, else otherwise, we shall be weighed in the balances, and so be found wanting. 0, then, let us, by the help of our blessed Lord and Saviour, work our work betimes, and then, at his good time he will give us our reward. And now, may God add his blessing for Christ's sake. Amen.

By Edwahd Chook.


The Book of Grace, Faith, and Triah.

First, I point out to my Readers in this Book the necessity of Faith, and the degrees of Faith and Grace. Secondly, The way whereby it is to be obtained. And Thirdly, by the help of God I plainly exhibit to your view what Faith and Trials are, and you have in this Book the trial of Abraham's faith when he was commanded by God to offer up his son Isaac, upon a mountain in the land of Moriahfor a burnt-offering; and in this Work you may see the nature and manner of this trial, and according to my capacity and experience of things, I have explained it throughout, and it is very entertaining and affecting; and this Work follows on by relating of the faith of the most holy men of God, and it is well worthy of consideration.

Now my friends, T have by the help of God's grace, given you a description of the character of the children of God; but we cannot become these blessed characters, except, we first believe that God is God, and that he is a rewarder to them that diligently seek him, through Jesus Christ our Lord; therefore, for our encouragement this Book is called the Book of grace and faith: and now speaking of faith, my friends. First then there appears to me to be an outward historical faith; Second, there also appears to me to be a common, or a general faith, which works by grace; Third, and there also appears to me to be a special faith, by grace, which convicts and convinces the soul of sin: and Fourth there also appears to me to be a saving faith, by grace, which by the merits of Christ, justifieth and sanctifieth the soul; therefore, the first that I shall endeavour, by the help of God, to speak of, is the outward historical faith; now this faith seems to me to be something like an hearsay faith, or a faith received by tradition; but this faith alone cannot do us much good, except God makes vit a blessing to our souls; and so by his grace, we repent of our sins. Now, you may ask some Very wicked

« PreviousContinue »