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all the world was not able of themselves to pay any part towards their ransom, it pleased our heavenly Father, of his infinite mercy, without any desert or deserving, to prepare for us the most precious jewels of Christ's body and blood; whereby our ransom might be fully paid, the law fulfilled, and his justice fully satisfied. So that Christ is now the righteousness of all them that do iruly believe in him. He for them paid their ransom by his death. He for them fulfilled the law in his life. So that now in him and by him every true Christian man may be called a fulfiller of the law: forasmuch as that which their infirmity lacked, Christ's justice (or righteousness) hath supplied.'
Though all other graces are in the soul at the same time faith is, yet it is in the prerogative of faith only to justify. So afterwards; “This sen. tence, that we be justified by faith only, is not so meant of them, that the said justifying faith is alone in man without true repentance, hope, charity, dread, and the fear of God, at any time and season." Though faith only justifies, yet justifying faith is not separate from repentance, hope, love, and other fruits of the Spirit. It is the proper office of faith to justify, for faith is the grace that is just suited for this purpose. As the eye is fitted for seeing, or the hand for acting, so is faith exactly fitted for justifying, i. e. for seeing Christ, and taking hold of him for strength and righteousness; but as neither the eye sees, nor the hand acts sepa. rate from the body, (for destroy the subject or organ, and its act is also destroyed,) so neither does faith justify separate from other graces, (for then it would not be true living faith ;) yet it alone justifies, the office of justification is its peculiar privilege, and the other divine principles in the heart have no share in this affair. In short, though faith and all other Christian virtues and graces are in the heart at the time of our justification, yet those other virties and graces have no hand in our justification, but justification is the office and prerogative of faith alone.
In the third part of this Homily it is said, We be justified by faith only; which is thus explained: “We put our faith in Christ, that we be justified by him only, that we be justified by God's free mercy, and the merits of our Saviour Christ only, and by no virtue or good works of our own that are in us, or that we can be able to have or to do for to deserve the same; Christ himself only being the cause meritorious thereof." Here our own works and virtues are excluded, and Christ asserted to be the meritorious cause of our justification. What, then, becomes of the opinion of those who extol the merit of works, and assign them a part in our justification ? Some are willing to make an evasion here: “We (say they) hold, that works are a condition, but not ą meritorious condition of our justification." But if works are not meritorious, how can they be any condition at all of our justification? I leave this difficulty for our adversaries to explain.
In the second part of this Homily, the testimonies of Hilary, Basil, and Ambrose, are produced ; and Origen, Chrysostom, Cyprian, Augustine, Prosper, Oecumenius, Phocius, Bernardus, and Anselm, are mentioned as advocates and espousers of this doctrine of free justification; which is designed on purpose to show the concurrence of Greek and Latin fathers in this important and everlasting truth.
! must just mention the eleventh Article, which is clear and explicit ; It is entitled,
OF THE JUSTIFICATION OF MAN. "We are accounted righteous before God, only for the merit of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, by faith, and not for our own works or deservings. Wherefore that we are justified by faith only, is a most wholesome doctrine, and very full of comfort, as more largely is expressed in the Homily of Justification." The doctrine of justification by faith only is here so clearly deilvered, and so positively asserted, that one
would think nothing but corrupt nature, an evil heart of unbelief, prejudice, or worldly interest, could incline men to understand this article in any other sense, or constrain them to put a double meaning upon it. Our reformers here call it a wholesoine doctrine, and very full of comfort; and all who experience it, find it so; although those who do not experience it, do not know either the wholesomeness or comfort of it. Many people have the doctrine of justification by faith in their heads, but yet are very uniserable for want of having it in their hearts.
ON THE PROMISES MADE AT BAPTISM.
What did your Sponsors for you at your Baptism?
“They did promise and vow three things in my name : First, that I should renounce the devil and all his works, the pomps and vanity of this wicked world, and all the sinful lusts of the flesh. Secondly, that I should believe all the articles of the Christian Faith. And, thirdly, that I should keep God's holy will and commandments, and walk in the same all the days of my life.” What is meant by the devil ?
An evil spirit, the prince of the fallen angels, who is invisible, but very busy and powerful. He is the implacable enemy of the whole human race, and especially of believers, whose ruin and misery he is always aiming to effect. He occasioned the fall of our first parents, seducing Eve, by a lie, to take of the forbidden fruit. 2 Cor. xi. 3. Under him are numbers of other wicked spirits, who are always at hand to tempt men to sin, and who will finally become the tormentors of such as die in a state of unbelief.
He is mentioned in Scripture under various names : Satan, (i. e. Adversary or Accuser.) God of this world. 2 Cor. iv. 4. Job i. 6. Zech. iii. 1.
Belial, (i. e. extremely wicked.) Lucifer. Isa. xiv. 12.
2 Cor. vi. 15. Tempter, (even of our Lord.) Matt. Roaring Lion. 1 Pet. v. 8.
A sinner from the beginning. 1 John Beelzebub. Matt. xii. 24.
iii. 8. Strong man armed. Luke xi. 21.
Apollyon, (the Destroyer.) , Rev.
The old Serpent. Rev. xii. 9.
Deceiver. Rev. xx. 10.
Surely, when we consider his power and subtlety, we have great reason to pray, “ Lead us not into temptation."
The Liturgy contains many petitions for deliverance from his wiles. In the Litany.-From the crafts and assaults of the devil. From
all the deceits of the world, the flesh, and the devil, deliver us. Prayer after the Litany.-That those evils which the craft and
subtlety of the devil or man worketh against us, be brought
to naught. Collect, 18th Sunday after Trinity:-Grant thy people grace to withstand the temptations of the world, the flesh, and the
devil. What are the works of the devil ?
Whatever is sinful, and contrary to the will of God, as lying, swearing, sabbath-breaking, envyings, contentions, theft, murder, uncleanness, hatred, drunkenness, &c. Gal. v. 19-21. He blinds the eyes of those that believe not. 2 Cor. iv. 4. He corrupts the mind. 2 Cor. xi. 3. He worketh in the children of disobedience. Eph. ii. 2. He keeps men from seeking salvation. He sows tares with the good seed. Matt. xiii. 39. He catches the word out of the heart. Matt. xiii. 19. Luke viii. 12. He leads men captive at his will. 2 Tim. ii. 26. He tempts men to apostasy. He put into the heart of Judas to betray his Lord. John xiii.
2. 27. He filled the heart of Ananias to lie. Acts v. 3.
We are warned to be on our guard, and to resist his attacks. Neither give place to the devil. Eph. iv. 27. Put on the whole armour of God, that you may stand against
the wiles of the devil. Eph. vi. 11. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. James iv. 7. Be sober, be vigilant, because of your adversary the devil.
1 Pet. v. 8. Whom resist, steadfast in the faith. 1 Pet. v. 9.
That you may not be overcome and caught in his snares, endeavour to preserve a continual sense of the omnipresence and omniscience of God, and of the duty you owe to him.
When temptation assails you, ask with Joseph, “ How can I do this great wickedness and sin against God ?" Gen. xxxix. 9.
Recollect, too, that Satan is often transformed into an angel of light, in order to deceive. 2 Cor. xi. 14. Beware then how you attempt to refute his suggestions by your own weak and unassisted reason. Hold no parley with him, but say, “ Get thee behind me, Satan :" and hide the word of God in your heart, as Jesus did, that you may be able at once to put him to silence with “ It is written." The Son of God was manifested that he might destroy the works
of the devil. 1 John iii. 8. What is meant by pomps and vanity ?
By pomps are meant the pride of life; all ostentations display of greatness and riches; the worldly arbition and distinction which seeks the “ praise of men,” and not “ the honour which cometh from God only ;” and such worldly objects in general as captivate the heart, and withdraw it from God.
Vanities consist of empty pleasures and amusements, finery in dress, and frivolous occupations.
These we must renounce; we must not only forsake them outwardly in our life and conversation, but resist them inwardly in our thoughts and desires. How do you prove the duty and necessity of this?
Thou shalt not follow a multitude to do evil. Exod. xxiii. 2. - Be not conformed to this world. Rom. xii. 2. Have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness. Eph.
v. 11. Let every one that nameth the name of Christ depart from ini
quity. 2 Tim. ii. 19. The friendship of the world is enmity with God. James iv. 4. Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world.
1 John ii, 15. Why do you say “ This wicked world ?" The whole world lieth in wickedness, i. e. is under the influence
of the devil. 1 John v. 19. What are the “ sinful lusts of the flesh ?"
The whole corrupt nature, with all evil tempers, dispositions, thoughts, and desires. When lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin. James i. 15. Abstain from fleshly lusts, which war against the soul. 1 Pet.
ii. 11. The lust of the flesh, the lust of the eye, and the pride of life,
are not of the Father. 1 John ii. 16. We must not indulge in sinful desires, nor give way to bad tempers, nor be found in bad practices; but aim to mortify and subdue our sinful affections. Take heed ye be not given up to your heart's lusts. Ps.
Ixxxi. 12. Flee youthful lusts. 2 Tim. ii. 22. Denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, live soberly. Titus ii. 12.
The punishment of the Israelites in the wilderness is recorded as an awful example to those who lust after evil things. I Cor. x. 6. Num. xi. 4. 33, 34.
The consideration that Christ died to save us from the tyranny of our three great enemies, the world, the flesh, and the devil, and that his grace is promised for our support under the conflict, should excite us to fight manfully against them. * Christ died to deliver us from this present evil world. Gal. i. 4. Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfil the lusts of the flesh.
Gal. v. 16. They that are Christ's have crucified the flesh, with the affec
tions and lusts. Gal. v. 24. That he should no longer live in the flesh to the lusts of men,
but to the will of God. 1 Pet. iv. 2. What was the second thing your Sponsors promised for you?
That I should believe all the Articles of the Christian faith.
True faith has been described, and its necessity shown. See Chap. IV. He that believeth not shall be damned. Mark xvi. 16. Without faith it is impossiele to please God. Heb. xi. 6. What was the third thing your Sponsors promised for you?
That I should keep God's holy will and commandments, and walk in the same all the days of my life. Where is God's holy will summed up?
In the ten commandments. Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, &c., but he that
doeth the will of my Father who is in heaven. Matt vii. 21. If thou wilt enter into life, keep the commandments. Matt.
xix. 17. Blessed are they that hear the word of God, and keep it. Luke
* The following suggestions of Archbishop Secker deserve our serious attention.
"I must desire you to observe, concerning each of the things which we renounce in Baptisın, that we do not undertake what is beyond our power; that the temptations of the devil shall never beset and molest us; that the vain show of the world shall never appear inviting to us; that our own corrupt nature shall never prompt or incline us to evil: but we undertake what, through the grace of God, though not without it, is in our power: that we will not either designedly or carelessly give these our spiritual enemies needless advantages against us;
and that, with whatever advantage they may at any time attack us, we will never yield to them, but always resist them with the utmost prudence and strength." -Lectures on the Catechisni, p. 33.