The Glorious EXCELLENCIE OF THE Spirit of Adoption; OR, Of the Spirit of the Sonne of God, derived to the Sonnes of GOD.

Wherein are many precious truths held forth, which are presented to all the children of Truth, who are and shall be sanctified through the truth.

ISAIAH, 44.3. I will powr water upon him that is thirsty, and flouds upon the dry gro [...]nd: I will p [...]r my Spirit upon thy seed, and my blessing upon thine off-spring.
GAL. 4.6. And because ye are Sonnes God hath sent forth the spirit of his Sonne into your hearts, crying Abba Father.

By M. G. Minister of the Gospell.

London, printed by Jane Coe, for HENRY OUERTON. 1645.

To the Reader.

THou art heere presented with a rich Cabinet of precious Jew­els, the which if thou doest unlock by the Key of the Spirit, thou mayest both inrich thy inner, and a­dorne thy outer man with­all: for they are not ap­pointed for Swine nor Dogs; who will trample them under their feet, and turn again and rent those that present them: but for [Page]the man who by the key of the spirit is able to un­lock them (to wit the man of which PAUL speaks, the spirituall man that is able to discern spirituall things) and that by faith is able to eloath and adorn himselfe with them; to these and no other shall it be advanta­gious: for as the talent wrapt up in a Naptkin, and the precious oyntment kept still in a close boxe, and the treasure hid in the earth can do good to none untill it be opened and ap­plyed unto the severall uses for which they are ap­pointed; so, neither can a [Page]Cabinet of spirituall Jew­els and perals, be any way profitable to any until they are opened, and unlockt by the spirit, who can lay open every truth is it is in its self, and cause the simple to understand the sweet, the high, and the glorious misteries of it; whereas be­fore it is meerly foolishnes unto him, and he cannot discern it. And therefore to you that have the spirit, to you it is commended; but this let me say, that even you are to beware how you come with a key of carnalitie to open it; for in the best there is carnality, [Page]as appears 1 Cor. 3.3. and Rom. 7.14.15. Oh therefore cast away that key, for it is a false key, and can never unlock it; I mean the key of the love of the world, which is contrary to the love of the Father, the key of Pride, of covetousnesse, of self-conceitednesse, of strength of Parts, or mans wisdome, and of any other thing that is contrary unto the fruits of the Spirit; and let the spirit of Christ Je­sus that is in thee, unlock it for thee, and open it to thee, that so by faith thou mayest (by the help of the same spirit) pertake of the [Page]sweetnesse, and the benefit of it, and be gloriously a­dorned with it, that thou mayest I say pertake of the benefit of it; for he that is made a Pertaker of these glorious Priviledges, and Prerogatives that is herein held forth, is unconceiva­bly rich, and he that is a­dorned with the orna­ments herein presented, is all glorious within, &c.

But let no perticular person whosoever he be, think that he is hereby ac­counted either a dog, or a swine, or is excluded from a participation of these Jewels and Pearles. Al­though [Page]in thine own ap­prehension, and the ap­prehensions of others, tho [...] art in as bad a condition a [...] can be imagined; yet I am assured that God hath gi­ven his blessed spirit, even the spirit of Adoption, un­to those that have former­ly been apprehended, to be as bad as thou art; and who knowes but in the reading of, or meditating on those lines, the holy spirit may be given in unto thee, and then (though it be other­wise a dead letter) it may prove a quickening word; As in the very reading of the Word in former times, [Page]nay and in this present time, it hath proved so to others. Now that all that shall read, and meditate on this piece, may if they be­long to the Election of Grace, behold and see the visions of the glory of the Lord, that are either here or any where discovered, and in beholding of them may be more and more changed into the same I­mage, from glory to glory, even by the Spirit of the Lord: Is the fervent de­sire of

The Servant of Jesus CHRIST: M. C.


  • TWo parts in the text. p. 2.
  • Three queries in the text.
    • First, How the Spirit may be said to be a Law? Answered. p. 4.
    • Secondly, How the Spirit of life may be said to be in Christ? Answered. p. 11.
    • Thirdly, What doth the Apostle meane by the Law of sinne and death? Answered. p. 14.
  • The Generall observation. p. 21.
  • [Page]Two things laid open.
    • First, that the Spirt of life in Christ frees us from the Law.
    • Secondly, the reasons of it, and ibid.
      • First, that the Spirit of life in Christ sets us free, as the Spirit is all in all in Christ, in all his suf­ferings & actions, is shewed. ibid.
      • And secondly, as the Spirit is all in all in his death. p. 23.
      • And thirdly, as the Spirit is all in all in his Resurrection. ibid.
  • Now this Spirit in Christ sets us free from the Law,
    • first, as Christ fulfilled the law for us. p. 24.
    • Secondly, as Christ adiudged all our sins against the law, to death upon the crosse. p. 26.
    • Thirdly, As Christ is the end of the Law for Righteousnesse. p. 30
  • But secondly, The Spirit of life derived from Christ to us frees us;
    • First, declaratively. p. 32.
    • [Page]Secondly, operatively. p. 33.
  • The necessitie of our freedome from the law by the spirit of life in Christ, is shewed,
    • first because else no flesh could be saved. p. 36.
    • Secondly, that the righteosnesse of it might be fulfilled in us by the spirit. p. 37.
    • And thirdly, that God might be all in all, and the Creature nothing at all. p. 38.
  • Three queeries more,
    • First, whether the law is sin? Answered. p. 39.
    • Secondly, Wherefore serveth the law? Answered. p. 40.
    • Thirdly, whither the law were given for a rule of life to the peo­ple of God? Answered. p. 44.
  • The uses are.
    • 1. To rebuke and admonish those that really are Antinomians, and against the law, who goe about to make voyde the law. p. 56.
    • [Page]2. To discover the sad condi­tion of all that walke after the flesh. p. 60.
    • 3. To invite poore sinners to come to Iesus Christ. p. 65.
    • 4. To discover the fondnesse of those that seek to be iustified by works; as all Papist and Papisticall spirits doe. p. 69.
    • 5. To cleere the Saints from that calumnious aspersion cast upon them of being Aminomians, who [...]n the contrary are such as establish the law. p. 72.
    • 6. To informe the Saints of their priviledges. p. 76.
    • 7. To exhort the Saints to walke in the sight of Iesus Christ, and in the light, the purity, and the joyes of the Spirit. p. 83.


John Downham


PAge 64. line 16. for they read thy, l. 23. f. the r. their, l. 26. f. condi­tion, r. condition, l. 29. f. wait, r. weight, p. 68. l. 6. f. ceifest, r. chie­fest, l. 22. dele into, l. 26. f. livig, r. living, p. 69. l. 2. f. befre. r. before, l. 9. f. free, r. freed, l. 12. dele by the. p. 17. l. 15 f. was justified, r. was not justified, p. 73. l. 19. dele by, p. 62. l. 7. dele mis. p. 63. l. 4. f. course, r. curse. l. 20. for man crucified, r. man is crucified, l. 26. f. Goost, r. Ghost, l. 29. f. trough, r. through.

THE GLORIOVS Excellencies of the Spirit of Adoption.

Rom. 8.2.‘For the law of the Spirit of life, in Christ Iesus, hath made me free from the law of sin and Death.’

THis blessed Apostle, (not inferiour unto any of the rest of the Apostles) seems to bee carried up alwaies into Heaven (as once hee was) while hee was upon earth, so that hee tryumphs over all things as having the victorie and is not mo­ved, nor in the least troubled for any of the sufferings he underwent in the body, but glories in tribula­tion, and despises the world, for he is crucified to it, and is as having [Page 2]nothing, yet possessing all things. Pe [...]s [...]ution, and Prosperity, Penu­rie and Plentie are alike, (welcome) to him; no Mutation and Change of sublunarie things can trouble his spirit, in a word; his whole Conversation is in Heaven, though his person be one earth, and no wonder; for he is fild with the Heavenly manifestations, the sweete discoveries, and the glorious makings out of the minde of God and Christ, (through the Spirit) unto him; as appears in all his Epi­stles (and especially in this) where­in hee holds forth the glorious Misteries of the Gospell, which in other ages was not made known unto the sons of men (as he him selfe saies, Ephesians. 3.5.) but now is made knowne unto the Apostles and Prophets through the Spirit. Of which misterieis this Text holds forth a very blessed one: where he tells us, that the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Je­sus, hath made him & all the Saints free from the Law of sin and death.

Now in the words, heere are two things contained, a Propositi­on, [Page 3]and a supposition, Something by way of proposall, and some­thing by way of supposall. The proposition is this, that the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath set the Saints free. The suppo­sition is this, that the law of sin and death had brought us into bondage, from which this Spirit of life in Christ hath set us free, in which these two things are to be taken notice of.

1 First, the ground, or cause, or foundation of our freedome; and that is the law of the spirit.

2 Secondly, The method, or way by which we are set free: and that is, as the spirit its selfe workes in Christ, he doth not say, that the spi­rit of life in us hath set us free: but the spirit of life in Christ hath set us free, from the law of sin and death. And here there might be many pro­fitable observations drawn from the words: but I shall sum up all in one, but before I fall upon it, there are three queries (arising from some difficulties in the words) to be an­swered.

1. Quere. 1 How the spirit may be said to [Page 4]be a law; or what is meant by the law of the spirit.

2. Queree. 2 How the spirit of life is in Christ.

3. Queree. 3 What is meant by the law of sin and death; from which the law of the spirit of life in Christ, hath set us free; But first, if the Law of the Spirit of life in Christ, doth set us free from the law of sin and death; then it seemes the spirit hath a law, for as there was a law given by God, in the hand of Moses the Mediatour, in the Olde testament; so there is a law in the new Testament. The law of the Spirit, which it seemes is the more powerfull and glorious law. The law that brings blessednesse, and joy un­to a Saint; for its this law that brings life, whereas the other brings death: for the Spirit must bring life through its owne law.

Queree. 1 But then the Queerie is, How the Spirit may be said to be a law, or to have law?

Answ. To which I answer. The law of spirit, may bee Considered in these three things.

1. In the Authoritie of the Spirit.

2. In the operations or work­ings of the Spirit.

3. In the guidance of the spirit.

1 1. Consider we the Authoritie of the Spirit, that royall and giorious authoritie that the Spirit hath. Now the spirit hath a double autority.

  • 1. As it comes from God.
  • 2. As it is equall with God in the first sence, the spirit and the Law are one, but in the second, the spirit and the law differs.

But I say, the first part or peece of the Authoritie of the Spirit is this; that it comes forth from the Father and the Son, and is sent forth from the Father & the Son by way of embassage: & so our Saviour saies; I will send the Comforter: He is a messenger sent from the Father, and the Sonne; and so hath mighty Au­thority. Hitherto the father works, and I worke: but if the Father workes, hee workes by the Spirit, and so if the Son workes he workes by the same spirit. Its the same Spi­rit comes from them both. And thus the Spirit hath Authority, and thus the law hath also authority, (I meane the Law given of God by [Page 6] Moses) for the law hath all its An­thority as it comes from God, and as it is sent sorth by God; so the law hath true authority, and in this Consideration they both agree; the spirit and the law, both have Autho­rity as they come from God, but then;

2. The spirit hath another Autho­rity, which the law simply conside­red hath not, that is this, the spirit hath authority in its self, and from its selfe: for the Spirit hath as great authority as him that sent him. God is the Spirit, & the Spirit is God, and the Spirit comming from the bo­some of God, is God himselfe; and the Spirit hath equall Authority with the Father, and the Son, and hath power to work out of his own pleasure, and out of his owne will; So saies the Scripture; The winde bloweth where it listeth, so is every man that is borne of the Spirit. The winde is sometimes in the East, sometime in the West; no man commands it hither or thither, no man bids it goe here or there, but it goes where it will. It is even so with the spirit; He hath [Page 7]authority to lay hold of one man, and not another, to chuse this man, and to give life to that person, and so suffer another to lie under death and miserie: for the spirit hath that pre­rogative, wherin he is not onely as a messenger, but is equall with the Fa­ther and the Son. And so the royall Authoritie of the Spirit, exceeding­ly surpasses the law; though the law have also authority from God, but then;

2 2. The Spirit may be said to have a law, or to be a law in regard of his mighty operation in the Soule: it brings downe light, and truth, and life, and power, into the soule, and workes exceeding strongly in the soule; and when it comes, what is able to withstand the Spirit? What is greater then the Spirit? What is stronger then the Spirit? If the spi­rit comes it bears down all oppositi­on: Though the flesh lust against the spirit, yet the spirit is two strong for the flesh, so that it divides the ve­ry jonts and marrow; So that the Spirit is a law above the law; the law is weake and cannot take place in the hearts of men: But when the [Page 8]spirit comes with its law, it prevails against all, and takes place. The flesh profiteth nothing saith our Saviour, it is the Spirit that quickneth. If the spirit quickneth, it hath life in it; and where life is, it is full of activity, for life is manifested in this, in that it is full of motion, quicknesse, and agi­litie, and in beating off every thing that doeth offende it, or anoy it. So the spirit being a spirit of life, it hath a mighty power in it. Although the soule be filled with sin, and guilt, and in that condition cloathed also with ignorance, which doth so in­viron the foule, as it cannot stir in any other way, nor hath the least motion of good in it; yet when the spirit comes he beares downe all, he destroyes all; and therefore it is called the spirit of burning in the scripture. And when Christ comes to Baptise, he is said to Baptise with the holy Ghost, and with fire; so that when the spirit comes, no­thing can stand before him, and he brings both light, and heate, and motion in him; and is most pow­erfull in operation, But then;

3. The spirit may be saide to be [Page 9]a law, or to have a law in it, as it is a sure, and true guide, and as it leades every soule in a right and true way. And therefore our Saviour tells vs, The spirit of truth shall leade you into all truth. And indeed the Spirit guides securely, and guides safely, guides surely, and guides, Purely, for the spirit cannot erre and he that hath the spirit knowes the minde of God, and is guided to fullfill the minde of God, as farr as he hath the spirit: for the spirit is a blessed guide, and a blessed rule, and about the law: for although the law, its true is righteous, holy and good, yet alas, it Cannot bring forth power, to inable the Creature, to walke suteable to its selfe. It is onely the Spirit hath that power; and not the law. Therefore the Spi­rit he is the law of the Saints he shews them the truth, teaches, them the truth, and leades them in the truth, and gives them power to walke according to the truth, for its the spirit that guides the Saints to Christ, who is the truth its selfe, and so: The spirit guides the Saints, in the waies of holynesse, through [Page 10]the Spirit they mortifie the deeds of the body, and live through the spirit they are guided to denie them­selves, to abandon their owne parts, and their own indowments, and their owne righteousnesse, and to see all in, and to fetch all from a Christ. Through the Spirit, the Saints put away the garment spotted by the flesh; and forsake their vaine conversation, wherein in times past they walked through the spirit, the Saints are guided to deny all vngod­lynesse, and worldly lusts, and to live soberly, and holy, and Godly in the present evill world; through the spirit they are taught to love with an vnfained love the houshold of faith: puting away malice and envie, and the leaven of discention, and wickednesse. through the spirit, the Saints are guided so to walke, as to shine as lights amidst a crooked and perverse generation. In a word: through the spirit, the Saints are guided (having discliamed all their owne righteousnesse) to doe that, which the Jewes, could not doe, by the light of the law; even to sub­mit to the righteousnesse of Christ, [Page 11]that is, to cloath themselves through faith, with the glorious robes of the righteousnesse of the Lord Jesus; whereby they see themselves, com­pleat in him, and thus the spirit is a pure, and a sure guide, and in these three respects, the Spirit may be said to have a law, and so much may suffice for answer to the first queree. But;

2. Queree. 2 In that the Apostle here tells us, of the spirit of life in Christ Jesus, and doth not say the spirit of life in us, but the spirit of life in Christ. The queree will be: how the spirit of life, is said to be in Christ?

Answer. To which I answer; The spirit of life is said to be in Christ, under two considerations.

  • 1. As hee is the Fountaine of life.
  • 2. As he communicates the spirit of life, unto all his people.

1. As the Lord lesus Christ is the fountaine of life; as the fulnesse of all life dwells in him: for so sayes the Apostle, It pleased the Father, that in him should all fulnesse dwell,1 Cor. 15.47, 45. and the same Apostle also saies, he is the Lord from Heaven, and that the [Page 12]first Adam was made a living soule, but the second Adam was made a quickning spirit: and therefore our Saviour tells us, the flesh profiteth nothing; but it is the spirit that quickens; and the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life. There is such a fulnesse of the spirit in Christ, that whatsoever Christ speakes is spirituall, and car­ries a spirituall signification along with it: for indeed the spirit was in him without measure; so that in him is life originally, or he is the fountaine of Life; but then,

2. The Spirit of life is in him by way of communication, all that of the spirit that is communicated un­to us; is communicated unto us in and by the Lord Iesus. Have wee any life, any strength, any beautie upon us, any grace conveyed unto us? It is all conveyed in and through the Lord Iesus Christ. And there­fore our Saviour tells the Jewes, that he was the bread of life, the bread of Heaven, that came down from Hea­ven: And whosoever did eate of his flesh, and drink of his blood, should live for ever: & he breathed the Holy [Page 13]Ghost on his disciples; and poures upon every one that beleeves on him, rivers of living water, rivers of his spirit; for he conveies fulnesse of spirituallitie, and divine strength into them. That man therefore that hath the spirit of life in Christ, conveyed into him: through the spirit of life in Christ living in him, is the most beautifull creature in the world: for he carries divine sweet­nesse, and beautie upon his spirit. And he that hath this spirit, derived from Christ, hath true life in him: other men may be alive, and yet dead: but that man, that hath the life of Christ, through his spirit that works in him; such a soul shall live for ever, such a soule shall never die; but it shall be in him, a well of wa­ter, springing up unto everlasting life. It is impossible that such a man should die; for this reason. He that receives the life of Christ, through the spirit of Christ; he re­ceives a true being, a divine nature and it is unpossible, that one drop of the divine nature should perish. [...] very person that hath the divine na­ture, he hath the spirit of Christ, he [Page 14]hath Christ as he raises persons from the dead; and as hee delivers them from the power of sin; and as hee quickens them, as himself is a quick­ning spirit. And so much for an­swer of the second querie; but,

3. Queree. What doth the Apostle meane heere by the law of sinne and death, from which the spirit of life in Christ sets us free?

T Answ. o which I answer; His meaning is either one, or both of these two things; either,

  • 1. By the law of sin and death, he must meane the power of sin; or,
  • 2. By the law of sin and death, he means that law which gives sinne a being, and gives it power to destroy;

Now though the first of these may be heere included; yet hee mainly intends the second in this place, as I shall shew by and by: but if he doe here any thing ayme at the first, in this place, it is, as sin is a law; and sin may be said to be a law, under these two significations.

  • 1. As it hath a mighty power in [...], or,
  • 2. As it hath a certaine kinde of confused rule.

1. It hath a mighty power: for so saies the Scripture; the flesh lust­eth against the spirit; and where there is lust, there is love, and love is as strong as death, either in good things or in evill: and so sin hath its power; but,

2. It hath a kinde of uncertaine rule, and method: for there is a me­thod in pleasure, and lust, and sinfull joy; after a carnall manner: and so sinne is a law; but that which the Apostle here means is.

2. The law which is the Law that occasions sinne: which the law of the spirit freeth us from, to this pur­pose observe but the 23. verse of the 7th. Chapter, which runs thus. But I see another law in my membrs, war­ring against the law of my minde, and bringing me into captivity, unto the law of sin, Where we see, the Apostle speakes of three lawes.

  • 1. The law of the spirit; which he calls the law of his minde.
  • 2. The law of Concupiscence: which he calls the law in his mem­bers; which he saies brings him into Captivitie to the third law;

Which he calls the Law of sinne: [Page 13]and is the law which occasions sinne.

For here is law, against law; bringing into Captivitie, to law. The law of sin in his members, rebelling against the law of the spirit in his minde; or his inward man, for saies Paul, I doe see another law, in my members: and this law in his mem­bers, was the power of sin, working through concupiscence and lust; carrying him contrary to God: re­belling saies he against the law of my minde; meaning against the law of the spirit in his heart, or the spirit in his heart as a law. And so as he saies in ano­ther place, The flesh lusteth against the Spirit, leading me captive to the law of sinne; Meaning by the law of sin, here in the last place: that law of which he speakes in the Text. The law of sinne and death; which is the Law that occasions sinne, and death: or the Law of Command­ments, and this appears in the verse following the Text: For the Apostle having said in the Text, that the saints are free from the Law of sinne and death; in the next verse hee [Page 17]shewes what that law is; in these Words.

For what the law could not do, in that it was weake through the flesh; God sending his owne Sonne, &c. What was that which the law could not do, that the Sonne of God did for us?

Answer, 1. the Law could not make us holy.

2. The Law could not free us from sinne.

3. The law could not free us from condemnation.

But one the contrary; it brought under guilt, brought us under the curse.

Now what law did this?

The law of Comandments, which (saies the Apostle) was weake through the flesh. And it may bee said to bee weake through the flesh, thus.

1. In that wee are weake, and through the fleshare not able to walk exactly to the law; nor to come up to the Rule of it in our conversati­on. And so are not able to obtain life by it. Therefore God hath given [Page 18]us life in another way, even through his Son. or,

2 In that the law as it is written upon tables of Stone (though it be holy just and good) hath no power as it is in the Letter to convay its selfe into us; to inable us to walke according to the rule it prescribes unto us. And this law is stiled the law of sinne and death, in these three respect, which the Scripture holds forth unto us.

  • 1. In that it discovers sinne.
  • 2. In that it is the strength of sinne.
  • 3. In that it brings men under the curse: and so lyable to death.

1. It discovers sinne; For the Apostle tells us, Rom. 7.7. I had not known sin, but by the law: For I had not knowne lust, except the law had said; Thou shalt not covet, and he tells us further: that where no law is, there is no transgression. The law is holy, and therefore it disco­uers unto men their unholinesse. And,

2. As the law discovers sinne, and makes sin to be exceeding sin­full, so it is the strength of sin. The [Page 19]sting of death is sinne; and the strength of sin, is the law, 1 Cor. 15.56. where were the strength of sin, were in not for the Law? and,

3 It brings men under the curse, and under death. For so saves the Apostle, it is written; Cursed is every one that continueth not in all things, that is written in the Book of the Law to do them: And so being under the curse, the effect of the curse is death. and therefore saies the Apostle; if you walke after the flesh ye shall dye, and it is the very title thats giuen to the law as though there were nothing else in it. The ministeration of condemna­tion: and the ministeration of death. 2. Cor. 3.7.9. In the 7 verse the Apostle cales it the ministeration of death, ingraven in stones and in the 9. verse, the ministeration of con­demnation. Thus you see how the lawis held forh in scripture to be the law of sinne and death, now what this law being weake through the flesh could not doe: God hath sent Iesus Christ to doe for us, and in us, and therefore he hath freed us from that law, and given us another law, [Page 20]even the law of the Spirit: that the righteousnesse of the law might be fullfilled, by the spirit in us, as apears verse 4th. And now being freed from this law, sinne shall not have dominion over us; for we are not vnder the law, but under grace; but againe it further apeares, that the Apostle in the text meanes the law of Condemnation: by comparing it with the precedent verse; where the Apostle saies their is no con­demnation to them that are in Christ Iesus; now least any man should object against that truth, hee gives this text as a reason, as if he should say thus, There is no condemnation to us, that are in Christ Jesus, because we through the law of the spirit, that is in him; are freed from the law of sin, and death: and therefore there is no condemna­tion to us, although others that are out of Christ, are under the law, and shall be condemned by the law. We are under another law: the law of the spirit, which is not the law of death, but the law of life: which is not the ministration of condemna­tion: but of Salvation. And thus [Page 21]much for answer to those thre quee­ries. I shall now proceede to that one observation which is as it were the sum of the whole verse, and thats this.

The gene­rall obser­vation. That the Saints have obtained a free­dome from the law, by the law of the Spirit of life in Christ.

IN the prosecution of this point I shall;

  • 1 Shew how the Spirit of life in Christ freeth us from the law.
  • 2. I shall shew the necessitie of it.

1. I shall shew how the Spirit of life in Christ sets us free from the law: and this I shall doe under a double consideration.

  • 1. Shewing how the Spirit of life as it is in Christ sets us free.
    1 The Spi­rit of life as it is in Christ sets us free as this spirit is all in all in Christ in all his actions.
  • 2. How the Spirit of life as it is in us, derived from Christ sets us free but;

First, as it is in Christ. Its the Spirit in Christ, is all in all. In his sufferings, in his death, and in his resurrection. I say the Spirit of life in the Lord Jesus is all in all in [Page 22]every thing he did, in the justifying of sinners. Without the Spirit, he could doe nothing: for the flesh is weake and Profiteth not: but the Spirit is all in all therefore when the Apostle tells us, that by the righte­ousnesse of one man; the free gift of God came upon al unto justification of life. Rom. 5.18. but because this could not have beene, unlesse the Lord Jesus had been justified in the Spirit: he therefore tells us, 2. Tim. 3.16 that without controversie this is the mysterie of Godlinesse, GOD manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit; seene of Angels &c. So that the Lord Jesus, was justified in the Spirit. Now Christ is said, to be justified in the Spirit two waies,

  • 1. As he is iustified in his person: as hee was found to be without all spot; and without all staine, as he was innocent and holy. And,
  • 2. As hee was justified in his workes: as they were all compleat, and perfect before God.

And so Christ is justified in the spirit, the spirit is all in all in him in all his actions: and in all his suffer­ings. And,

2.As the Spirit is all in all in Christs in his death. The Spirit is all in all in his death. He offered himself (saies the Apostle Heb. 9.14.) through the Eternall Spirit without fault to God, he presented himself as a com­pleate sacrifice to God, through the Eternall Spirit: and this indeede is the mystery of Godlynesse: that the Spirit doth all in all in Christ; in that he is justifyed in the Spirit, and through the Eternall Spirit he pre­sented himself a compleate Sacrifice, without spot to God, flesh and blood could never have done it: no it was the Eternall Spirit in Christ, is all in all, and therefore we know the Spirit was poured upon Christ, without measure. And,

3. As the spirit in his death,As the Spirit is all in all in his Re­surrection so in his Resurrection was all in all. Therefore the Apostle, Rom. 1.3, 4 speaking of Christ, sayes hee was made of the seed of David, accor­ding to the flesh: but declared to be the Son of God, with power, ac­cording unto the spirit of holinesse, by the Refurrection from the dead, by the Spirit of holinesse. The Lord Jesus was gloriously discovered to be the Sonne of God: being raised [Page 24]from the dead by the spirit of holi­nesse. The Lord Iesus was gloriously discovered to be the Son of God: be­ing raised from the dead by the spi­rit of holinesse.

Indeed, had it not been for the spirit he might have layne for ever in the grav, and never have, beene discovered: but the Eternall spirit wrought gloriously in him, in the resurrection from the dead.

Thus you see the Spirit is all in Christ.Now this spirit in Christ sets us free from the law. But now I shall shew you how the spirit of life being thus in Christ all in all, sets us free from the Law. And thus,

1. As Christ himselfe was sub­ject to the Law for us,1. As Christ ful­filled the Law for us. Mat. 3. and thus we shall finde he fulfilled all the law for this end, Gal. 4 4, 5. He was made of a woman, made under the law: for what end? To redeem them that were under the law. And indeed he fulfilled the law, to the very utter­most. When he comes to Iohn to be Baptized; he saies, (Iohn resu­sing to Baptize him) Suffer it to be so now; for thus it becomes us to fulfill all righteosnesse. The truth is, it is not possible, that any person, [Page 25]that could not fulfill the whole law should have bin a Saviour of sinners, from the curse of the law. Therefore saies the Apostles, Heb. 7.26. For such an High Priest became us, who is holy harmelesse, separate from fins. And saies he, verse 28. The law ma­keth men high Priests which have infirmity: But the word of the oath which is since the law, maketh the Son a high priest, who is per­fected for evermore, for so the word is in the Originall, though it be o­ther waies rendered, in our ordinary Translation, so that the Son, the Lord Jesus he is perfected for evermore▪ he hath no infirmity as those Priests had, no failing, no spot, but is per­fected for evermore, and therefore he saies to the Jewes, which of you convinceth me of sin? Although he was a friend of publicanes, and sin­ners, yet he could not be convicted of sin, for hee actually never sinned: but was a Lambe without spot, and that is the first consideration, where­in Christ hath set us free from the law, in that he hath fulfilled the law for us. But,

2. The Lord Iesus hatht set us [Page 26]free from the law,2. As Christ adiuged all our sins against the Law, to death upon the Crosse. in that he through the spirit, adjuudged the of­fences committed by us, against the law, unto finall and fatall ruine. He upon his Crosse, adjudged all our sins to death, that they should bee caried all away, into the land o [...] forgetfulnesse; never any more to be remembred. Now take away the offence; and the law hath no­thing to do with you, take away the breaches, and you are free from all the Curses of the Law. There­fore the Apostle tels us, that in Christ, sin was condemned in the flesh. Christ did thus condemne sin as he tooke away the power of sin, and as he took away sinne it selfe: so that it could have no voice a­gainst us. Now the offence being taken away, of what force is the law? As suppose a man should live in a Kingdom, wherein there should be a law made, that whosoever should doe such a particular thing, (let it be what it will) should snf­fer such a heavie punishmnnt, onely the law maker, hath power over the law, to pardon such particular persons, as he pleases: Which if he [Page 27]doe, the law hath no voyce at all against them. They are free from the law. The law hath nothing to doe with them, though all others are under the power of it, yet they are not under the power of it for the law maker having pardoned these perticuler persons; the law hath no voice at all against them, and though the law be powerfull against others, yet it cannot against them: they then are free from the law: the law may bee a law to others to condemn them, but not to these: their offence being pardoned. So the Lord Jesus Christ taking away the offence, takes away con­demning power of the law from us: and so we are not under the law, but under grace, the law being ta­ken away by Christ: for in that Christ upon the Crosse, adjudged all the breaches and trespasses of us, committed by us, contrary unto the law to death, and destruction: we are free from that Law, God send­ing his owne Sonne in the flesh, condemned sinne in the flesh. How did the Lord Jesus Condemne sin in the flesh? Thus, The Lord Je­sus [Page 28]Christ coming in our nature, and taking our sinne upon him; he con­demned sin, and suffered for it, in the flesh: and so tooke away the voice of sin, and the power of sinne, so that sinne is as a condemned man, judged to death, & to be destroyed. And if sinne be taken away, I pray what is become of the law, the strength of sinne? The Apostle tells us that is (in the same manner that sinne is) taken away too, Rom. 7.4. we are dead to the law, by the body of Christ; that we should be mar­ried unto another, even to him who is raised from the dead, &c. So then we are dead to the Law. For thus, They that live unto the law, have either life from it, or death from it.

1. Life from it: but that we have not; for there is no life from it, but in the fulfilling of it: but Christ is our life and we are justified freely by grace, for by the works of the law, shall no man living be iustified. Or in the next Place, they that live to the law, have death from it; for the breach of it, but we are free from the condemnation of it also: and shall not be destroyed by the Law: [Page 29]so that we do not live unto the law, but are dead unto the law. And if you shall ask how? The Apostle an­swers by the body of Christ. How is that? Thus. The Lord Jesus Christ taking our nature upon him, in that body ascending upon the Crosse, hee there blotted out the hand-writing of ordinances, that was against us, that was contrary to us, that stood cursing of us; he took it out of the way, nayling it to his Crosse. And this is a precious mi­sterie, which affords the Saints abundant consolation. Again in that the Apostle saies in the aforementi­oned place, that we are dead to the law by the body of Christ: it is saies he that we should live unto another: as if he had said, we are not now to live any longer to the law; but Christ hath therefore freed us from living to the Law, that we should live unto himself: live as by him, and through him; so to him as our first Husband being dead, we are no longer to live to him: but being married to another, We are to live unto him; and there­fore saies the Apostle we are dead to [Page 30]the law, our first husbnd, (to what end) that we might be maried to another; even to him who is raised from the dead. And this is the fur­ther illustrated in the next verse, for saies the Apostle, Now being delive­red from the law; that being dead wherein we were held; It is that we should serve in the newnesse of the spirit, and not in the oldnesse of the latter. So now here we see cleerly, Christ having adjudged all our sins to death upon the Crosse in his owne body; hath also by the same way freed us from the Law. But,

3.3. As Christ is the end of the law for righ­teousnesse. Rom. 10.4 And lastly, wee are free from the law, by the law of the Spirit of life in Christ, as Christ is the end of the law; for Christ is the end of the law for righteousnesse, unto eve­ry one that beleeveth. He is the end of the law for righteousnesse. Righ­teousnesse could not be by the law, therefore the Lord Jesus became the end of the law, to bring righteous­nesse to us.

No man can performe the law or walke equivolent to it, and therefore Christ must be the end of the Law, [Page 31]to bring in everlasting righteous­nesse; that is such a glorious righte­ousnesse; that is such a glorious righ­nesse, as abides for ever. The whole law is summed up in Christ, whatever beauty, or glory, or excel­lencie appeares in the law; It gives it all up [...]o Christ.

As when many small sums, are gathered up into into one sum, they looze their number and names in it: So the law, and the beauties of it, being as Severall small sums gathe­red up into Christ, they looze their name in him, and he is their perfe­ction. When the Gentiles do bring in their glory into the New Jerusa­lem, they shall looze their glory in the New Jerusalem, and New Je­rusalem shall be their glory, so is it with the Law, Christ is the glory of it, and as the beams of the Sun, end, and are summed up in the Sunne; so the law is a beame of God, and Sha­dowes out something of Christ and of God: But when Christ came, and took our nature upon him, it was summed up in him, and ends in him, and in him it appers gloriously: So Christ frees us from the law, as he [Page 32]sums up the law wholly in himselfe. If there be any beauty in the law, it is beautifull as it is in Christ. The truth is, Christ is the substance of it all, and so a beleever sees all the beauty and glory of the law, as it is in Christ for him; he having ful­filled all righteousnesse, and so for righteousnesse he is become the end of it, to every beleever, and he is not to have his righteousnesse in the Law, but in Chriist. And thus now wee see in these three particulars, how Christ by the Spirit of life in him hath freed us from the law.

Now in the Second place,2. The spirit of life de­rived from Clrist to us frees us. we may see, how the spirit of life as it is in us derived from Christ, frees us from the Law, and that is onely in these two waies.

  • 1. Declaratively.
  • 2. Operatively.

1.1. Declara­tively. The Spirit of life in us, frees us from the law declaratively: that is as the Spirit of Christ in us de­clares us to bee free from the law, and no more under the law but un­der grace. For as our saviour saies, John 15.14. speaking of the spirit: He shall reserve of mine and shew [Page 33]it unto you: and John 16.16. The Spirit of truth which proceedeth from the Father, shall testifie of me▪ so the Spirit of Christ, as it is in the Saints, declares to the Saints the things that are freely given to them of God, and testifies to them of the Lord JESVS, that hee hath taken away the hand writing of Ordinances, that was against us, that was contrarie to us, nailing it to his Crosse, and declares how the Lord JESVS hath freed us from all our sinnes, and presented us holy, and unblameable, and unreproveable, without spot or wrinckle in the sight of God. It is he that declares to us that the Lord Jesus hath fulfilled all righteousnesse for us: and in a word is become the end of the Law for righteousnesse to every one that beleeveth. I say its the Spiirit in us that declares these things, and many others unto us, and without the Spirit, no man can comfortably and truly know the things that are freely given to us of God. But then;

2. As the law of the Spirit of life in Christ, sets us free from the [Page 34]law declaratively; so the Law of the spirit of life in Christ, as it is in us, sets us free from the Law operative­ly, or by way of operation, therefore the Apostle, Rom. 8.11. tells us, that if the spirit of him that raised up Ie­sus from the dead dwell in you, he, that raised up Christ from the dead, shall also quicken your mortall bodies by his spirit that dwelleth in you Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his, but if he be Christs, you have the Spirit of Christ, and if you have the Spirit of Christ, it will not be idle, it will notly still, it will quicken your mortall bodies; yea it will mortifie the deeds of the body, it will burne up all your corruptions, It will through the declarations of the love of Christ and the grace of God, con­straine you to walk holily, and to deny all ungodlinesse.

In a word, the Spirit of Christ works in the Saints mightily, and by its operations in us sets us free from the Law: and so sayes the Apostle, Rom. 7.6. We are dead to the law, sayes he, to this end, that we should serve in the newnesse of the [Page 35]Spirit, and not in the Oldnesse of the Letter, after a more spirituall and glorious manner then they of old could (being under the law) doe; for the Law was weake, but what the law could not doe, the Spirit can [...], having more abundant glory then ever the law had. The Spirit being able to convey power into the creature to fulfill all that he requires of it; For it brings life along with it, whereas the letter killeth, Rom. 3.6. Now the Spirit freeth, us from the letter, in carrying us forth to worship God in the spirit. In a word which is the misterie of the law of the Spirit, through the Spirituall fulfilling of the law in us, it frees us from the law, which the Apostle further makes cleer Rom. 8. When in the second verse, hee had said we were freed from the law, in the fourth verse he saies, it is that the righteousnesse of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walke not after the fiesh but after the Spirit: So the Spirit in fulfiling the law, frees us from the law, and freeing us from the law, fulfils the law in us. And thus we have seene how the Spi­rit of life in Christ hath sett us free from the law.

And now am I come to shew the ne­cessitie of the Spirits freeing [...] from the Law:The ne­cessitie of our free­dom from the law by the spirit of life in Christ for these rea­sons. Necessarie it was;

1. BEcause if there had been no freedome from the Law by Christie then no flesh could be sa­ved;2. Because else no flesh could be saved. for the Law brings us under the curse: But now God sends his Sonne, and puts his Spirit without measure upon him, that he might free us from the curse of the Law. In what a wofull case, and in what a miserable condition had we been in, every one of us, had not the Lord Jesus come and freed us from the curse of the Law? But now, God hath created Christ Jesus to be a blessing to the world, to take away the old Covenant, and to make a new Covenant; else no flesh could be saved, and it was impossible any man should have eternall life; for the voice of the Law is, he that sin­neth shall die. Now (as the Apostle saith) all have sinned, and it being so, that what the Law sayes, it sayes to them that are under it, then [Page 37]assuredly unlesse we be freed from being under it, all must die: so that we see a necessitie of being freed from the Law, because else no flesh could be saved. But then;

2 We are by the Law of the Spi­rit freed from the Law, for this end, that the righteousnesse of the law might be fulfilled and wrought in us through the Spirit: And there­fore the Saints are said to have the Law of God written in their hearts, and to bee all taught of God; and having the spirit, they are said to grow up in the spirit, and to increase with the increase of God; and so Paul tels us, he presses for­ward toward the mark: And the spirit is given to the Saints, that they may all come to be perfect, even to the measure of the stature of the fulnesse of Christ: And though it be true, the Saints have not yet obtained perfection (to which they presse) while they are here (as Paul professes of himself, Phil. 3.12.) Yet the time shall come, when in the spirit they shall be all presented perfect, and with­out spot in the sight of God: Not [Page 38]but that we are so already, as God lookes upon us all washed in the bloud of Christ; and though it be true that the flesh lusteth against the Spirit now, yet I say, we shall never cause growing up unto perfe­ction, untill we do attain unto per­fection; and therefore sayes the A­postle, when he who is our life shall appear,1 Ioh. 3.2. then shall we uppear with him in glory, and shall be like him, as he is; for then shall we attaine unto a full perfection, when that which is in part shal be done away, being then perfect. This was the glorious designe of God, to make persons righteous in Christ, as Christ had gathered up all truth and righ­teousnesse in himself. So he being our Head should fulfill righteous­nesse and truth in us, by the Spirit. And thats the second reason of the point. But then;

3.3. That God might be all in all, and the creature nothing at all. The third reason why we are freed from the law, through the Spirt, is this, that God might be all in all, and the creature nothing at all. God hath gathered up all into Christ, that we might not be saved by fulfilling the law, or by any other [Page 39]way, that he alone might be all in all, that the Creature may not have whereof to boast; therefore he doth all freely by his grace and by the law shall no man living be justified; for if righteousnesse were by the law, then might men have whereof to glory, but the great designe of God is his owne glory, which he will not give to another, and therefore hath he freed us from the Law, and glo­rified the riches of his grace towards us that beleeve, in that we through the spirit are freed from the law, which brought us under the curse, that wee should not bee under the oldnesse of the letter, but be of the Circumcision which worship God in the spirit, and rejoyce in Christ Iesus, and have no confidence in the flesh.

I should here come to the uses of all, but there two or three queeries first to be answered.

The first is, that which Saint Paul both makes and answers; having (Rom. 7.5, 6.) declared this truth here hold forth in the Text, that we [Page 40]are dead unto the law; and freed from the oldnesse of the letter, that we migot serve in the newnesse of the Spirit; this queree he makes to prevent it in others.

Is the Law sin then?

To which the Answer may be in the Apostles words, God forbid? I say God forbid that any man should so conceive, that that which was given immediately from God is sin: No saies the Apostle, the law, is Holy, and the Commandment ho­ly, just and good; It speakes nothing but holinesse, and there is nothing but puritie in it. I need stand no longer in this to confirme the truth of the puritie of the law it is so ap­parent. But,

2. Queerie 2 The next queerie will be that which the same Apostle in another Gal. 3.19. place also makes, and that is this, Wherefore then serveth the law?

Answe. Answ. The Gospell holds forth this to be the use of the Law, viz. To convince every man, and wo­man, of their miserable condition [Page 41]out of Christ, and this it doth as will appear if you consider this. That no man can come into the presence of God, or be advanced to the bea­tifical vision, but those that are pure, those that are holy; For (as the A­postle tels us) without holinesse, no man shall see God, so that no un­clean thing shall stand in the pre­sence of the most holy God, for he is of purer eyes then to behold ini­quitie, and therefore he hath given forth this Law as a rule for all to walk by in generall, (it being a ho­ly Law) and hath declared that in it he sets before men, life, and death, blessings, and cursings; but man having in him by nature, the seed and root of all corruption; hath therefore a will to do evill, but none to do good, and having first lost his first image, can never keep this law, for all have sinned, and all come short by nature of the glory of God, held forth in this Law; and there­fore being in this condition, must (at last) needes sinke into the bottom­lesse pit, and the burning Lake, where the Worme dyeth not, and the fire is not quenched; if there [Page 42]be not a Mediator stepping in be­tweene, to bring in everlasting righteousnes, in which sinners may stand compleat before God, and to redeem them from this Law, which because of sinne puts them into this deplorable condition: So that now all do see, may see, or shall see, their miserable condition by the Law not having a Saviour; and that is now the use of the Law: And so much in effect the Apostle holds forth, 1 Tim. 1.9, 10. Having spoken in the former verses of some that would be Teachers of the Law, and turning from the Gospell, he bids Timothy to change them to teach no other doctrine, then the doctrine of the Gospell. Now sayes he, the end of the commandement is purity and love; the Law holds forth puritie: But some (sayes he) that would be Teachers of the Law know not what they say, nor whereof they affirm: It seems they either did (as the Pharisees) seek righteousnesse in the Law, or went it may be a little further, mixing law and Gos­pell, preaching that men must be saved partly by the Law, and part­ly, [Page 43]by Christ, or some such like doctrine. But positively to say what it was I cannot, nor is it much materiall to our purpose. But sayes the Apostle, though they know not what they do, yet we know what we do, and what the use and end of the Law is; we know it is pure, and holds forth purity to all; and all that come short of the purity there­of, are under the curse thereof, be­ing out of Christ, and not pure in him, and righteous in him, knowing that the Law is good, if a man use it lawfully; that is, if it be rightly applyed, if we preach the Law and all the terrors thereof unto all that are out of Christ, and are not righ­teous by him: Knowing (sayes he) that the Law was not made for a righteous man, but for the lawlesse and disobedient, for ungodly, and prophane, &c. the law is made for these, and so it discovers their mise­rable condition unto them; And so Paul sayes, the Law discovered sin to him, and he never knew sin be­fore the Law discovered sinne him, and made i [...] to be exceeding sinfull. So that this is now the use of the [Page 44]Law, it makes all the world to be­come guilety before God, and de­clares to altheir miserable condition out of Christ. And so much for answer of the second quaerie. But then,

3. Queere. 3 Another quaerie will be this? Was not then Law given for a Rule of Life unto the people of GOD, when it was delivered upon Mount Sinai?

Answ. Answ. Yes, the Law was given for a rule unto his people Israell, who were then the peculiar people of God and this the Apostle cleerly holds forth, Gal. 3.24. where he tels us plainly, the Law was a Tu­tor or a Schoole-master, untill CHRIST. For the Law was our Schoolemaster untill Christ. And so the word runs in the Originall, and not as it is in our ordinary Transla­tion; The Law was our Schoole­master to bring us to Christ; For this is not the sense of it, but is con­tradictorie to what the Apostle had before delivered in the 12. verse, where he sayes. The Law is not of Faith: That is, Justification by [Page 45]Faith in the Lord Jesus, is not held forth in the Law, for the law is not of faith. Life by Christ Jesus is not held forth in the law, but the man that doth it shall live in them: So that the law is not able to bring us to CHRIST, but the law was our Schoolemaster untill CHRIST; And therefore (sayes the Apostle) before CHRIST came, the Saints were under the law, as under a Tutor or Governour; but when the fulnesse of time was come, God sent forth his Son made of a woman made under the law, to redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons; and being sonnes, he hath sent forth the spirit of his Sonne, &c. So that CHRIST being come, we are no longer under a Schoolemaster, but being sonnes have the spirit of CHRIST JESUS now to be our guide: Whereas before, the Saints were under the Law as a guide, as a Schoolemaster untill Christ. But this will more cleerly appear, if you looke upon the Covenant that GOD made with them of old.

And this was the Covenant that God made with them, that they should observe all the lawes, and all the Statutes, and judgements that God had given them, which are set downe in the 20.21.22. and 23. Chapters of Exodus, in which i [...] set downe, besides the ten precepts, that were afterward written upon tables of stone, Divers other Lawes and Ordinances, and then in the 3. vers. of the 24 chapter, it is said; Moses came and told the people, all the Words of the LORD and all the judgements, and all the people answered with one voice, and said: all that the Lord hath said, we will doe, and then verse 4. it is said, Moses wrote all these words of the Lord, and Moses offered burnt offerings, and sacrificed peace-offe­rings, and took the Booke of the Covenant, and read in the audience of the people, and they said, all that the Lord hath spoken will we doe, and be obedient. And Moses took the blood and sprinked on the peo­ple, and said, behold the blood of the Covenant, which the Lord hath made with us concerning all these [Page 47]words, so that this was the Cove­ant that God then made with his people, as appeares also, Exod. 34.27, 28. Where the first Tables be­ing broken, Moses goes up againe to mount Sinai, & the Lord there ma­king a recapitulation of those things, in the forementioned Chapters; he saies againe to Moses, after the te­nor of these words, I have made a Covenant with Israel: and Moses wrote upon the Tables the Words of the Covenant, the ten Command­ments, which Moses the man of God (who also faithfull in all his house) againe presses upon the people all along his whole fifth Book, called Deuteronomie: declaring from the Lord, the blessings, and cursings, that did attend the fulfilling and breaking of it. So that this was the Covenant, and this was the rule by which they were to walke: but most Peculiarly the ten precepts are said to be the covenant,Exod. 34.28. as in the foremen­tioned place; though yet the rest of the statutes, and laws, and judge­ments were not excluded: so that this is evident that this is the cove­nant, that God made with his peo­ple, [Page 48]when he tooke them by the hand, and led them out of E [...]pt and according to this rule they were to walke, in which was sett before them, life, and death, blessings, and curs [...]ings. But this letme adde; that though the Saints were under this covenant vntill Christ, yet besides this they were under a covenant or a promise of free grace too, which way given to Abraham; in that pro­mise. In thy seede shall all the nati­ons of the earth be blessed: which all the Saints, vnder the law belee­ved: for saies the Apostle. The law which was four hundered and thirtie yeers after could not disanull it. And therefore the Saints, vnder their Ceremonies, saw a Christ then, al­though but darkly, and in a figure, (as Heb. 9.9) yet all the Saints, had an eye vnto the Lord Iesus, though yet vntill the coming of Christ, they were still held vnder the law, being then vnder that cove­nant, though now the Lord hath made a new covenant with his peo­ple, since the comming of Chirst in the flesh, as we find Ier: which is quoted by the Apostle. [Page 49]Hob. 8. Behold, the dayes come saith the Lord, that I will make a new Covenant with the House of Israel; not according to the Cove­nant I made with their fathers, in the day that I took them by the hand, to leade them out of Egypt: (to wit the Covenant before men­tioned) which my Covenant they brake, although I was an husband unto them, saith the Lord; but this shall be the Covenant, that I will make with them (saith the Lord.) And surely this is a new Covenant; not according to the tenor of the old Covenant, but a new Covenant, established upon better promises:Heb. 7.11. and 8.6. and therefore sayes the Author to the Hebrewes, God finding fault, he sayes behold the dayes come wherein I will make a new cove­nant, with the house of Israel. Heb. 8.8. And verse 13. In that he saith a new covenant, he hath made the first old: Now that which decay­eth and waxeth old, is ready to va­nish away: So then it is not accor­ding to the old covenant; But this shall be the covenant, that I will make with the house of Israel, after [Page 50]those dayes faith the Lord: I will put my Law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts, and will be their God, and they shall be my people, and they shall teach no more every man his brother, and every man his neighbour, saying, know the Lord, for they shall all know me, from the least of them unto the greatest of them, saith the Lord; for I will forgive their iniquities, and I will remember their sin no more. This is the new covenant, and this is a glorious new covenant indeed: And should I here go about to hold forth the glory of it, though but in some perticulars, and shew where­in it excels the former covenant, having that in it, which never any former covenant had, this beings new covenant: It would swell in­to a large volume; but because I am but answering of this quaeric, Whe­ther the Law were given for a Rule? I shall here speak but to that onely thus, that it was unto the Israelites before the comming of Christ: for they were then under that cove­nant, though now, God hath made 3 new covenant with his people; [Page 51]and they are not under the old, that being (as the Holy Ghost sayes) va­nished away: and so all that are in Christ Jesus, are under a new cove­nant, according to which they are to walk, which comes nothing short of, but farre exceeds in holinesse and spiritualitie, the old covenant; and as many as walk according to this rule, of the new covenant in Christ Jesus, peace be on them, and mercy, and upon all the Israel of God.

But this let me adde: That though the Saints be now freed from that Law, yet they being spirituall, see a spirituall beautie and glory in it, they see it is holy, and just, and pure; they see the Characters of the glo­ry of God upon it, and cannot have slight and undervalewing thoughts of it, as the manner of some is, though they are not to have over­valewing thoughts, as to think to be justified thereby, or to think they are to walk no further then that rule for justification; this I say they can­not do, for the spirit in the Gospell, leades them further then the Law; yea, it leades them to serve, in the [Page 52]newnesse of the spirit, and not in the oldnesse of the Letter: that the Law might be fulfilled in a spirituall (maner though they are not to tye themselves to that only; but to go further) yet what is there in the law, that the Spirit in the Gospell doth not spiritually hold forth? Either in the ten Commandements, or all those other Statutes, and judgments and ordinances, given to them of old? I say what is there which is not spiritually held forth in the Go­spell? Though not in the outward Letter. Although the Saints do not now, nor are now, to fulfill it in the Letter, as I might instance in circumcision and many other things yet all these things are to be full­fild spiritually in them. And thus, though the Saints are freed from the Law, yet they are to walk by a higher rule, and a higher Law; the Law of the Spirit, and he is a pure and a sure guide. And he that hath not the Spirit for his guide, he knowes not what it is to be united to the Lord Jesus: for he that hath not the spirit of Christ, is none of his, and as many as are led by the [Page 53]spirit of God, are the sonnes of God, and i [...] is the spirit of God indeed, that leades the Saints into all truth. That Spirit that comes from God, leades them up to God. And thus have I briefly answered this quaery, and showed by comparing the two covenants together, that the Saints are free from the Law, and that they are not under that covenant; for for that is made old. &c. So that they are not,

First, under the condemning power.

Nor secondly, are they to seek to be justified by the workes of it.

Nor thirdly, are they to take the Law as it lyeth in the Letter,Rom. 7. in all the parts of it, as a rule to walk by.

But heer, lest I should be mista­ken by any slight or vain spirits, who may be apt to conclude, that the Law is utterly to be cast aside now, and is no more to be lookt upon, but they may live as they list: I must further declare, that though beleevers are now free from the condemnation of the Law, and though they are not to take the whole Law as it lyeth in the Letter [Page 54]of it, to be the rule of life (as was the Pharisaicall, and now is the Po­pish manner) yet this Law is still to be taken as a rule as it is in the spirit: or as it is held forth in the Gospell. For as I said before, the Law is spiritually held forth in the Gospell: And so, not onely the ten Precepts is to be taken as a Rule, and is morall, but other Lawes be­sides them (which were given with the ten Precepts) are rules for Saints now, and are morall also; because the Gospel holds them forth also. As for instance, that Law of doing good to our Enemies, Exod. 23.4, 5. and that Law that forbids oppres­sion of the poore, and of the Wid­dow, the fatherlesse children, and of the stranger, Exod. 22.22, 23, 24 and 23.9. As also that of keeping just weights, and just ballances, and that of reverencing the ancient and the gray head, &c. These and o­thers, are I say morall as well as the ten Precepts, because they are hel [...] forth in the Gospell, and therefore are they rules by which Saints are strictly injoyned to walk by. In a word, all that which is written in [Page 55]the Law and the Prophets, is freely, and fully, and sweetly to be embra­ced, and practised by all beleevers, as the Gospell holds it forth: And doubtlesse the Spirit of Christ doth lead those that are his so to do; what­soever the practises of others are.

But now on the other side, I would not have any to think that those other lawes which are aboli­shed in the Gospell (I mean in the outward litterall observation of them) as those typicall Ceremo­niall, and Leviticall lawes, are to be in the least practised by Beleevers now; but we are to receive all laws from the hand of Christ now, and not from the hand of Moses: As the Lord Iesus now hath explained them himself, and by his spirit in his servants in the Gospell; and not as Moses laid them down.

And thus much in answer, &c.

Now by this time wee see this truth cleere. That the Saints have obtained a freedome from the Law, by the law of the Spirit of life that is in Christ Jesus. And it comes now to bee applied in severall uses: and it is of use to both those two [Page 56]sorts of people, which doe divide the world. Those that walke after the flesh, and those that walke after the Spirit: First, those that walke after the flesh: And,

1. Vse. To rebuke and ad­monish those which re­ally are Antino­mians a­gainst the Law and would make voide the Law.

Vse. 1 IN the first here is a word of re­prehension, to those that having a loose and carnall spirit do con­temne, and despise the Law, upon this consideration; because they heare that in the Gospel, it is the priviledge of the Saints, that they are not under the Law, but under Grace: therefore doe these men turne the Grace of God into wantonnes, & take libertie in waies of licenciousnesse; as though they might live as they list: turning the Glory of God, against the Glory of God: The Glory of his Grace against the Glory of his Holinesse, and of such the Apostele speakes, (for there were such also in his time) Jude 1.4. And he saies, they are ungodly men, turning the grace of God into wantonnesse, and de­nying (saies he) the onely Lord God, and our Lord Jesus Christ. [Page 57]And truely they may well be said to denie the Lord Jesus; For were the Spirit of the Lord Jesus Christ within, it would fulfill in them the righteousnesse of the Law: and they would now serve (though not in the oldnesse of the letter, yet) in the newnesse of the Spirit. Their spirits would be carried out into a conformitie to Jesus Christ, and the Glorious Image of God would b [...]- renewed in them: in a word, they would be a new creature; If any man be in Christ, he is a new cra­ture. A new creature; What is a new creature? You may the better know it if you look upon its contra­ry; The old man: which the Apostle describes, Ephes, 4.22. Put off the old man, which is corrupt according to the deceitfull lusts. Now if the Old man be corrupt, and deceitfull, the new creature, or the new man is holy, and pure, and senceare: Ye, the Apostle tells us, verse 24. it is Created according to the Image of God, in Righteousnesse, and true ho­linesse. Let those therefore that thus despise the law, and therefore take libertie to walke after the flesh, to [Page 58]fulfill the deceitfull lusts of the old man; know that they deny the on­ly Lord God, and our Lord Jesus Christ, and if they so continue, they have no part in him. There­fore I would beseech these persons, seriously to consider, and deeply to pensitrate in their thoughts.

  • 1. That the Law is an expresse character of the Glory of God: It had such a glory in it, as made Me­ses the minister thereof, his face to shine, even by reason of that glory that is in it: and can you have low thoughts of it?
  • 2. The law is Holy, Just, and and good: and dare you slightly to esteeme of it?
  • 3. It was the delight of all the Saints since God gave it by the hand of Moses; It was their meditation day and night, and sweete as honey unto them, yee sweeter then the hony combe, and how then can you undervalue it? And,

Lastly, it is that that shines glo­riously in the Lord Jesus, and that which he fulfilled in every tittle of it: For he came not to destroy the Law, but to perfect it, to fulfill it [Page 59]perfectly; that in his Righteous­nesse who fulfilled the Righteous law, all those that doe belong unto him, and are drawne by a superna­turall worke of God in their spirits, to beleeve in him, may be presen­ted without spot and wrincle before God! O therefore have high thoughts of it, and set it up in your hearts, and let it be the sweet sub­ject of your meditations day and night, as it is in the Lord Iesus, as it is in him fulfilled for you, if you doe belong unto him, and as it shall be satissied also (by the Spirit) who are his. And though you cannot now attaine to walke in the puritie of it, and the perfection of it here; yet you shall be perfect in the spirit, when you are unclothed of this earthly house, and cloathed up­on with the house which is from heaven: when that which is perfect is come, and that which is in part, shall bee done away; So leaving these men, in these contemplations, I come to the next use; And,

2. Vse. To disco­ver the sad condi­tion of all that wal [...]e after the flesh.

Vse. 2 IT serves to discover, and lay open the sad condition of those that walk after the flesh, that spend their daies in vanity & their yeers in fol­ly. I say in folly, for so I may call the best actions, greatest wisdome, and accutest parts of naturall men: For it is all foolishnesse with God. This point I say informes them of their sad condition: and truely it is very sad and dolefull; of what de­grees soever they are, but before I declare it, let me Characterize some few particular degrees of them, that they may behold their owne image, and be afraid, that so if it may be, they may bee wonne to come to the Lord Jesus, that they may walke after the Spirit. The severall de­grees are these.

1. Art thou such a one as walk­est in such practises as these, adul­tery, fornication, uncleannesse, la­civiousnesse, idolatrie, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulation, wrath, strife, sedition, heresies, envyings, murder, Drunkennesse, revellings, & such like, and wallowest in these [Page 61]practises, as Swine wallowes in the mire, with a kinde of pleasing contentment? Then thou art one that walkest after the flesh. But,

2. Some may please themselves and think, that because they are not notoriously such persons, there­fore they are not such as walk after the flesh: but again, Dost thou minde the things of the flesh? Art thou taken up with carnal content­ments, and carnall pleasures? And though thou scornest the vile and filthy practises of some, and dost not walk in those wayas that are notoriously evill, and base in the eyes of men; yet if thou delightest altogether in carnall things, and when thou hast thy honours, and a high esteem amongst men, and deli­cious fare, and pompous apparell, and fleshly pleasures, and things succeed according to thy minde, then thou art where thou wouldest be, and art like a worm alwayes craw [...]ing upon the earth, and creep­ing upon dunghils, never mounting up higher, nor having all thy de­lights and thy joyes; nor placing thy affections on the things above, [Page 62]nor dost by faiths Eagle-eye pierce the heavens, and see him that is in­visible, as Moses did, and dost not behold the Lord Jesus, as thy trea­sure there, that there thine heart might be also: dost not behold him there, as having taken thy nature upon him, and having in it by cru­cifying of it, and shedding his blood washed away thy sins, and is raised up again, that thou mightest be raised also unto newnesse of life, and to live together with him in glory. Now I say if this be thy condition, that thou dost not behold these glories to the joy of thy soul, and placest not thy delights here, but mindest the things of the flesh only: then thou still walkest after the flesh. Rom. 8.5. For they (sayes the Apostle) that are after the flesh, do minde the things of the flesh; but they that are after the spirit, the things of the spirit. But then;

3. But dost thou go yet further? And dost not onely despise fouler and grosser sinnes? But dost in some sort see a vanitie in all the creatures under heaven, and canst finde no contentment in them, and there­fore [Page 63]labourest and seekest by thine own strength, to finde out a way to please God; that so thou mayest obtain the favour of God; and therefore endeavourest to walk in­nocently towards all men, and though thou failest in many things, yet thou thinkest by thy good mea­nings to please God: so though thou canst not do as others do; yet thou pleasest thy self in this estate, and thinkest it is good. But this is still to walk after the flesh: for heres no Christ, no spirit in all this. Again;

4. Although thou goest further then all this, and dost not onely mean well but as thou mayest think do well too; and art strict in ob­serving the Law to thy power, and art frequent in performing of du­ties, and observing fasts and in gi­ving largely to the poore: yet all these things, and many more mayest thou do, and that out of a zeale to­ward God, and yet thou still walk­est after the flesh. For Matth. 5, 20. our Saviour tels them; That except their righteousnesse exceed the righ­teousnesse of the Scribes and Phari­sees; [Page 64]they should not enter into the Kingdome of Heaven. Though the Pharisees did strictly observe the law, were frequent in performance of duties, made long prayers, fasted twice a weeke, and were liberall to the poore, &c. And the Apostle Paul, Rom. 10.4. tells us, of the of the Iewes that hee could beare them record, and they had a zeall of of God; Though not according to knowledge for (saies he) they be­ing ingnorant of the Righteousnesse of God; and going about to set up their owne righteousnesse, which is by the Law, have not submitted to to the righteousnesse of God, &c. And so though they had a zeale of God, in the fulfilling of the Law; Yet being without a Christ, they are without a spirit, and walke after the flesh.

Thus you have seene the Caract­ers of the men that walke after the flesh: and they are next to be in­formed, of their wofull, and mise­rable condition from this point, and the first word it speakes to them, is no lesse then this; They shall die, die Eternally, it is the direct word [Page 63]of the Apostle Rom: 8.13. for if yee live after the flesh, yee shall die eternally for they that walke after the flesh, shall not inherite the Kingdome of God and of Christ Gal: 5.2. so that your condition is deplorable; and the reason is: be­cause you are vnder the law, and all the curses thereof, so that fearfull is your condition, for you are gone no further (being but after the flesh) then, Agar, then mount, Sinai, then mount, Ebal. you are no further then Agar, which is in bondage with her children, you are still in bondage, and if their be any spirit in you, it is a spirit of bondage, a spirit vnder which you may lie bound, till you drop into hell. Againe, you are no further then mount Sinai: the mount of feare, and trembling, and you heare nothing but a fearfull noyse: so that horrour and trembling lights upon you, and fearfullnesse surprises you, and no wonder, you are no further then mount Ebal. all the curses of the law are thundering against you: for what saies it. Cursed is every one that continueth not in all that is [Page 64]written in the Booke of the law to doe them. So that Dredfull, fearfull, and lamentable is thy condition, whoever thou art, and wherever thou art, that walkest after the flesh. To be carnally minded is death, death while alive for thou art but as a dead carkase while thou walkest up and downe: thou haste no spiri­tuall life in thee, no spirituall joy in thee, no spirituall peace, no true contentment nor joy in the holy Ghost: thy pleasures are dead plea­sures, thy comforts are dead com­forts, thy life is a dead life for if thou looke upon thoy best com­forts, and pleasures, thou shalt find bitternesse, and sorrow in them a secret inward anguish in them: so that, they are not to be compared with those living pleasures, and that glorious sweetnesse, and peace, that Saints have in the spirits. And so may I say of all that thou inioyest. Ah poore creature; h [...]w sad is thy condition! If it be bitternesse in the be gining, it will much more be bitter in the latter end. And how searfull will that wait of vergence be, when it shall fully se [...]e upon thee?

And now I cannot but bewaile, and pity thy condition, and thy deplora­ble estate: nor can I leave thee heere in it. But,

3. Vse. To invite poore sin­ners to come to Jesus Christ.

Vse. 3 IN the next use; with yerning bowels, and melting affections (being so deeply affected with thy miserable condition) desire to fall a wooing of thee, to come over un­to the Lord Iesus Christ, that through his spirit thou mayest be freed from this condition: and a be­seeching of thee, to be marryed to the Lord Iesus, that thou Mayest be dead to the law. What canst thou object against him, that thou should­est not imbrace him? I know that thou wilt answer, that thou canst not object against him but against thy selfe, thou art a great sinner. But what though thou art?2. Cor. 5.20. Yet he woes thee, and sends his messengers to wee thee: And wilt thou not be wood; And why? O hearken to his voice, and thy soule shall live! Why what saies he? Truly faith­full sayings, and thus, I am come [Page 66]into the world to save sinners, & dy­ed for the ungodly, What canst thou now say? Though thou art a sinner; yet thou art not exempted from him; Nay though thou art the chie­fest of sinners; and thy sinns be of the deepest dye, though they bee Scarlet, and red like Crimson: yet is the Blood of the LORD JESUS able to make thee as white as Wooll, ye whiter then the Snow. Isa. 1.18. And now, why wilt thou not accept of the LORD JESUS? O imbrace him for thy Saviour! But thou sayest, How shall I dare to come to Christ, since I have nothing to bring him, no­righteousnesse, nor holy perform­ances, nor good actions? But hee will not be put off so; but conti­nues still to woe thee, and answers that Objection too, and saies, Let him that is a thirst come, and take of the Water of life freely, Revel. 22.17. Yea without money and without price, Isa. 55.1. So that he tells thee plain­ly, he expects nothing from thee hee resolves to be free, and t [...] shew the riches of his free grac [...] unto thee.

And now behold he stands at the doore, and knockes, and waites to be Gracious: and now what canst thou say, that thou dost not hearken unto his sweete voice? And why is not thine heart ravished with his love, and overcome with his sweetnesse?

Canst thou yet refuse to be mar­ried to the Lord Jesus? And to receive him into thy bosome, that he may free thee out of thy misera­ble condition, and adorne thee with glory? O receive the Lord Jesus, that he may take thee out of thy ragges, and filthynesse, and aray thee with royall robes, and put a crowne upon thine head.

But me thinkes I should heare thee say. How is it that I must re­ceive him, that so I may become his Spouse, and may bee married unto him, and be his for ever?

I Answer, Doth his sweetnesse prevaile upon thine heartt? and doth his love constraine thee indeed: and art thou so inamored with his beau­teous excellencie, that now thy heart doth thirst for him? And art thou as it were cast into pangs of [Page 68]love for him, and longest thou to enjoy him, above any besides him? Then be leeve that he is the Lambe of God that taketh away the sinnes of the World: Beleeve he came to save the ciefest of sinners, and that he came to save thee, and to free thee from under the Law, beleeve that he hath washed away thy sinns in his blood: and beleeve that hee loves thee, and delights in thee for his owne sake: And this is all he desires: For if thou canst but thus beleeve thou art in a most glo­rious, and a most happie condition: for thou hast formerly had nothing that is good in thee; yet in belle­ving (if thou dost by the sweet workings of the Spirit in thy soul, truely beleeve) thou hast put on the Lord Iesus Christ, and hast the Spirit of Christ, powred into into thee, as the Lord Iesus himselfe hath saide, Iohn 7.38, 39. Hee that beleeveth one me, one of his belly shall flow ri­vers of livig waters. And this saith the Text, he spake of the Spirit; and indeede, he that beleeveth on the Son, is at once possest of the Father, the Son, and the Spirit; and then, [Page 69]though thou couldest doe nothing befre, yet thou mayest bee able to say with Paul, I can doe all things through Christ which strengtheneth mee.

And so much for this use, I come now to the next: And,

4. Vse. To disco­ver the fondnesse of those that seek to be in­stified by his works, as Papist and Pa­pisticall spirits.

Vse. 4 IS it so, that the Spirit of life in Christ Iesus, hath free us from the Law? Then this discovers the fondnesse of those, that seeke to be Iustified by the by the Workes of the Law. Let those Pharisees but to sider, that unlesse the Lord Iesus had come into the world; to free men from the curse of the Law, no flesh could have been saved: unlesse Christ himselfe, through the eternall spirit, had fulfilled the Law for us; all men must have perished for ever, for there is no life to be obtain­ed by the Law; but in the perfect fulfilling of the Law:Gal. 2 17. Rom. 3.20 but saies the Apostle, by the workes of the Law shall no man living be justified. And therefore when the young man in Gospel; that thought to be justified by his doings, came to our Savious, [Page 70]and said, what must I doe to inhe­herite eternall life? Our Saviour answers to his question, (because hee questions whither he might be saved by doing) and tells him what he must doe, and againe saies our Saviour if thou wilt bee perfect, meaning, if thou by thine owne strength seekes to bee perfect, I will tell thee what thou must doe: having before told him that hee must do all the workes of the Se­cond Table towards his brother; Our Saviour tells him further, he must goe, and sell that he had, and he should have treasure in heaven, and come and follow the Lord Je­sus: but that cast him into a sad fit, as being utterly unable so to do. And certainly, unlesse men bee able to fulfill the Law to the uttermost, is no obtaining salvation by it. If thou failest but in one point, thou art guilty of all, for there is no hope for thee (I meane) in the Law. How vaine is it therefore for any man to seek life by that which speakes nothing but death to all, since all have sinned, and all come short of it.

Aagaine, consider that no man can come unto the Father, but by the Lord Jesus: He is the way, the truth, and the life. God hath de­termined to glorifie and magnifie his free grace, that all might be of grace, that the Creature might not have whereof to boast, and there­fore, wee are justified freely by his grace, through the redemption that is in CHRIST JESUS Romancs. 3.34. That the crea­ture might not have whereof to glory, and therefore the Scrip­ture saies that Abraham was iu­stified by workes; but Abraham beleeved God, and it was ac­counted unto him, for righteousnes.

And therefore saies the Apostle, to him that worketh not, but belee­veth on him that justifieth the un­godly, his faith is accounted unto him for righteousnesse, Rom 4.3.5. And in the 23. and 24. verses the A­postle tells us againe, that Abra­hams faith being imputed unto him for rigteousnesse: It was not written for his sake alone, that it was im­puted, unto him; but for us also, to whom it shall bee imputed for [Page 72]righteousne; if we beleeve on him that raised up Iesus our Lord from the dead. Be ashamed there­fore of thy vanity, thou that goest about to establish thine owne righ­teousnesse, being ignorant of the righteousnesse of God: and be now informed, there is no other name under heaven, by which thou canst be saved, but by the name of Iesus Christ. And,

5. Vse. To cleere the Saints of that odious nickname of Antinomians.

Vse. 5 THe fifth use is this. If it be so, that the Saints have the Law of God written in their hearts, and the law of the Spirit of life be with­in them, then in the next place, this point is of use to cleere the Saints, from that nick-name of Antinomi­an, which some doe indeavour to fasten upon them. But herein I would not be mistaken, as though I hereby Intended, to sooth up those that are really such, in their lawlesse practises; for to such I have spoken already in the first use: but I speake now of those, that have the law of God written in their hearts, through the Spirit; Who yet are [Page 73]branded with this contemtible title of Antinomians, or persons against the law, by scandalous and wicked persons, and that (as it seemes) up­on this ground; Because they pro­fesse they are saved by free grace, and not by the workes of the law, and instified in beleeving the pro­mise of free grace, without the deeds of the Law. That which I shall say for them in this particular is this, that in this they doe not make voide the Law, but establish the Law. And doe I say so, or doth not rather the Spirit of God by the A­postle, Rom. 3.31. say so: for the Apostle having been in the former ver. discoursing, that no flesh should be justified by by the Law, but by free grace, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus; and that the Law is nothing in point of justifica­tion, but it is all imputed to faith: saies the Apostle, do we then make voide the Law through faith? God forbid; Yea we establish the Law. And now you that cast these false aspersions on the Saints: How will you answer the Apostle heere? For you cast not this aspersion upon [Page 74]those that are in these times only; but upon all that are saved by free grace, through the redemption that is in the Lord Jesus, in all ages, and places. Now saies the Apo­stle they doe not make voide the Law, but they establish it. And now friend whosoever thou art, that castest this title upon the Saints know, that if thou dost not see, that they establish the Law, it is through thine owne ignorance thy ignorance of the workings of the Spirit of JESUS CHRST, in those that beleeve: for though the Saints now are redeemed from the Law, that they might not serve in the oldnesse of the Let­ter: yet they now serve in the new­nesse of the Spirit: and though they be free from the Law; yet it is that the Law of the Spirit might be put into them: for the Spirit of Iesus Christ worketh in them migh­tily, both to will, and to doe: and they are led by the Spirit of God, in the waies of God. They are led by the Spirit in the waies of holy­nesse, and puritie. And further they are led by the Spirit to doe [Page 75]that which is above the Law, and which the Law doth not teach them also: as to beleeve in the Lord Iesus, and to see them­selves compleate in him, and to behold the things that are freely given to them of God; even that the Lord Iesus is made unto them of God, wisedome, Righteous­nesse, Sanctification, and Re­demption: not that they can possibly slight the Law; (al­though they are carried in the Spirit beyond it) as it holds forth any holinesse, no, so it is their delight, so it is sweete un­to them. Although they seeke not righteousnesse by it, but by the Lord Iesus, who hath ful­fild it for them: which the Lord teach thee by his Spirit to do, who­ever thou art, that brandest any Saint with this title. And thus I thinke I neede not say more in this particular, to take off men, from casting this Aspersion up­on the Saints: and that for this reason: Because I doe not here speake unto those who have given up their names to Iesus Christ, [Page 62]who ever they are, for they are not I hope to bee charged herewith, nor are they so much out of their way, as to give out such expressi­ons of their brethren, in whom the Spirit of the Lord Iesus is: or if they have through weakenesse, or mis­misinformation, herein failled, a word is enough for them; Their spirits are so tender, and as for o­thers, it is not much materiall, if they so breake out still; For the seed of the Bondwoman, be al­waies enemies to the children of the Freewoman: Onely heere they may see, though they cast this as­persion upon them, it is but false.

And so much therefore shall suf­fice for that use. But,

6. Vse. To in­forme the saints of their pri­viledges.

Vse. 6 IS is so, that the Saints through the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus, are freed from the Law? From the Curse of the Law; and from the oldnesse of the Letter, &c. Then let the Saints be heere informed of their priviledges, and their uspeak­able happinesse.

  • [Page 63]1. You that walke afer the Spi­rit, this you see now is your pri­viledge, that though you were by nature under the course, and chil­dren of Wrath even as others, be­ing under the Law; Yet now you are free from the curse, and from wroath. And,
  • 2. That though you were once darknesse; yet now are you light in the Lord. And,
  • 3. Though you were once stran­gers, and alians in your mindes by wicked workes; yet now are you drawne nigh to God, by the death of his Sonne. And,
  • 4. Though you were once al­together defiled with pollution, and corruption; yet now your old man crucified, and the deedes of the body are mortified through the Spi­rit. And,
  • 5. Though you were once in fear continuaily; yet now have you continuall peace (in some measure) and joy in the Holy Goost, and why all this, and much more? But,
  • 6. Trough that priviledge, which summes up all others in it. In [Page 78]that you are translated out of the kingdome and the power of dark­nesse, into the glorious light and li­bertie, and Kingdome of the Sons of God, in Jesus Christ.

1. I say your priviledge and glo­rious prerogative is: that though you were by nature under the curse, and Children of wrath, even as others: Yet now you are free from the Curse, and from wrath, for the Lord Jesus was made a curse for you, to free you from the curse of the Law. The Lord Jesus lay under the Wrath of the Father, that you might lye downe in the love of the Father; And that the time of your blood might be a time of love to him: so though the Law may curse others; yet it cannot curse you. For there is no con­demnation to them that are in Christ Jesus. Who can lay any thing to thy charge, so as to con­demne thee? Surely none can: Nei­ther Satan, nor wicked men, nor good men, nor thine owne consci­ence, nor Angels, Nay God him­selfe will not, for it is he that justifi­eth thee; or rather Christ that died, [Page 79]and now being free from every curse, and every condemnation. O how bles­sed is thy condition. But,

2. Looke yet further upon thy pri­viledges, and see that though thou wert once darkenesse; yet now art thou light in the Lord: though thou wert in a state of blindenesse, and ignorance, even as other gentiles walked, taking thy swinge in the workes of Darkenesse, yet now the Lord Jesus by his Spirit hath been a light unto thee; Who is a light to light­en the Gentiles, as well as others: so that though thou wert altogether kept under, and couldest not look up unto God, being in darknesse; yet now by the light of the Spirit, thou art able to behold God in the face of Jesus Christ: to know the minde of God, and what is the acceptable will of God, in some measure: and now thou seest, and and discernest spirituall things; for thou hast now the Spirit, to teach thee to know the things that are freely given to thee of God. So that,

3. Though thou wert a stranger and an alian in thy minde, by wicked workes, workes of darkenesse; yet now art thou drawn nigh to God by the death of his Son, and though thou wert [Page 80]once a stranger, yet now thou art of the common wealth of Israel, Though thou wert once a stranger, now thou art a fellow Citizen with the Saints in Sion, though thou wert once a stranger, and an alian; yet now thou art of the Family of God, of the Houshold of God. And what, a servant there? I and more: A Son, an adopted Son. Nay a fellow heire with Jesus Christ: Nay more thou art a Spouse, a Bride, the Lambes wife. Thou art married to the Lord Jesus. Now all the sweetnesses that are to be found in these relations, are thine. Is it a great priviledge to be a Servant to the Kings person? Thou art so most eminently: Nay he makes thee his friend too. But it is more to be a Sonne? Why; thou art so. It is more to be an heire? That is thy priviledge too. But is it more to bee a Spouse, a Bride, a Wife? This is thy Royall Pre­rogative. Besides many other relations, in which thou standest through Iesus Christ: as to be Kings, and Priests be­fore God, &c.

And all this though thou wert once a stranger unto God, and an Alian unto thy Fathers house: and wert de­filed with wicked workes, so as thy per­son [Page 81]was loathsome, yet even then wast thou received into love, and haddest these priviledges conferred upon thee: and all through the Lord Jesus, and the Spirit of life working in him. But,

4. Thou that wert once altogether daubed all over with black and bloody staines of Corruption; yet hast thou now that old man Crucified, and these deeds of the body mortified through the Spirit, and although thy life were as a sinke, continually sending forth abomi­nable corruption, that did even infect the very ayre where thou didst breath; Yet now, through the Spirit of Holi­nesse given forth unto thee, by the Lord Iesus; thou art still mortifying the deeds of the body; and still crucifying these Corruptions. And that spirit that is in thee, will never cease, untill he hath to­tally gotten the victory, over all thy coruptions, and hath set thee in a per­fect State: even when thou shalt lay downe this fleshly body, and this earth­ly tabernacle, so that still in the meane time thou dost increase with the increase of God and so thou shalt grow in the Spirit and decrease in the flesh. As John must decrease but Christ must increase. So thine inperfections must decrease, [Page 82]and thy Christ in thee must increase. And as the house of David must growe stronger and stronger, and the house of Saul weaker and weaker. So in thee the Spirit must grow stronger and stronger but the flesh must grow weaker & wea­ker, even till the flesh be utterly over­come, and mortalitie be swallowed up of life. But then,

5. Though you were once in continu­all feare, and under a Spirit of bondage, yet now have you continuall peace and joy in the Holy Ghost: for you have not received the Spirit of bondage, un­der which you were, while you were in the bonds of Satan, & chains of darknes, I say you have not received that spirit of bondage, to fear again: but you have received the Spirit of Son-ship, wherby you seeing God as a reconciled Father, do now serve him without fear (I mean) slavish feare such feare as may in the least trouble or distract your hearts with terrour, or horrour: for that is contrary to the Spirit of Son-ship. And Low can you now feare, that in the Spi­rit behold the Fathers countenance, as being reconciled by the Lord Jesus un­to him? no, you cannot, for,

6. You that were all your life time [Page 83]subject to bondage, even to the law, and sinne, and Satan; before the comming of the Lord Iesus into your soules, are now freed from it, and are now in the glorious light, and libertie of the Sons of God, in Iesus Christ: and now feare, I meane slavish, is cast away; not but that there remains still a sweet feare, a filiall feare, a feare of love: but this is not a trouble but a solace to your souls: for it proceeds from sweetnesse, and ends in sweetnes; it proceeds from love, and ends in love. The discoveries of love to thee, draw it as an effect of love from thee; so all slavish or perplexing feare is banished now that thou art in the glorious Kingdom of God in Iesus Christ:7 Vse An ex­horta [...]ion to the Saints to walke in the sight of Iesus Christ and in the light in the purity in joy of the Spirit. for thou art brought into a king­dome of glory, being brought unto the Lord Iesus: and in this, thou hast all the priviledges, that the most inlarged heart can thinke upon, and these are your happinesses, who are dead to the Law, and married to the Lord Iesus. And now,

7. Vse.

ANd lastly, Is it so, that the Saints by the Spirit of life in Christ Ie­sus, have obtained this glorious free­dom, & these glorious priviledges, & is it [Page 84]thus, that the Saints of God have the Spirit of Iesus Christ? then here may be a use of sweete exhortation, unto them: a four fold exhortation.

  • 1. Alwayes to be taking sweet views of the Lord Iesus.
  • 2. To walke in the glorious light of the Spirit.
  • 3. To walke in the puritie of the Spirit, and to be fruitfull through the Spirit.
  • 4. To walke in the joyes of the Spi­rit, and to rejoyce evermore. But,

1. You that are Saints seeing you have obtained this freedome, the text holds forth by Iesus Christ, in whom you have such glorious priviledges: Be exhorted to be alwayes taking a view of Iesus Christ, and contemplating of that which Christ hath done for you, and though yet, you know but little, be exhorted to know more, and to grow in the knowledge of our Lord and Savi­our Iesus Christ. Paul counts all things but drosse, and dung for the excellencie of the knowledge of Iesus Christ: so do you. It is your onely happinesse. It is life eternall; and therefore hee that knowes most of Christ; let him improve all the strength of Christ that is given [Page 85]unto him, in the use of all the meanes God hath for that end given to us, to know more. O let it be your continu­all exercise, to study the Lord Iesus, and to meditate of the Lord Iesus: let him be your meditation day and night. Let the Lord Iesus alway be in your heart: when you lie downe, and when you rise up, in your going out, and comming in. In all your discourses, let the Lord Ie­sus be held forth; when ever you have opportunitie. especially those which are cald to the ministerie, and have op­portunities according to their calling to speake in publicke, being made over­seers of a flocke: be alwayes I say hold­ing forth the Lord Iesus Christ, and the knowledge of the Lord Iesus unto the people, for how are they said to be ministers of the Gospel, and ministers of Christ that are not continually prea­ching Christ? but (as too many doe) spend the time in which they should preach Christ, in discoursing of points of controversie, and of the Civil Law, and discoursing of the lawfullnesse of war, and the like never holding forth the knowledge of Christ; or but sel­dome. I doe not nor cannot object against the lawfulnesse of such discour­ses: [Page 86]but I covet to have more of Christ held forth, and to have the Lord Jesus set up in the hearts of all. And there­fore let this exhortation be acceptable to all, strive to know more of the Lord Jesus: to know him in every particu­lar. Dive into and take a view of all his glories, and as you have opportuni­tie, hold them forth to others; but especially his death. Paul makes that, as if it were the summe of all the Go­spel he was to hold forth: Christ cruci­fied, and therefore he tells us that he desires to know nothing, and glory in nothing, but a crucified Christ. 1 Cor: 2.2. Gal. 6.14. And O how many, and how sweet are the benefits of the Crosse, and death of Christ? take a veiw of this in the text: how upon the crosse, he took away the hand-writing of ordinances, that was against us, and freed us from the curse of the law; be­ing made a curse upon the Crosse for us. Oh therefore grow in the know­ledge of a Christ crucified! And in a word, grow in all the knowledge of of Christ know him in his death, and the fellowship of his suffering, and the power of his resurrection: know him in his union with thee, and relations to [Page 87]thee, &c. And still so prefer the know­ledge of Christ above all other know­ledge; as with the holy Apostle and the holy martyr to cry out: I desire to know none but Christ, none but Christ. And,

2. As you that are Saints, are to be exhorted to be alwayes veiwing of your Saviour and to grow in the know­ledge of the Lord Jesus Christ: so ha­ving his Spirit poured upon you: you are now to walk in the glorious light of the Spirit, that it may appear, that you are children of the light: for this is your priviledge, that ye are now light in the Lord; the Lord Iesus is your light, and your Sun. Oh therefore let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorifie your Father which is in heaven, shine you amidst a crooked, and perverse ge­neration, although the blinde world walkes in darknesse, yet do you walke in the light; in the light of the Spirit, in the light of the Lord, and as in the day, being children of the light: bring all your actions into the light, and let them all be according to the light. Let the light of the Spirit in the Word, bee the rule of all your [Page 88]actions, and of all your holy perform­ances, in every thing you doe, search the Scriptures whither it be so or no; try all things by the light of the Spirit, and hold fast that which is good. Take up nothing upon trust from others, but be sure to have a light from the Spirit, for what you doe. And,

3. As you are alway to be viewing the Lord Iesus and to walke in the light of the Spirit: you are so also, to walke in the Spirit as to walke in the puritie of the Spirit: bringing forth the fruits of the Spirit. Let your conversation be as in heaven, while you are upon earth, walke in the Spirit, and be fruitfull in every good word, and worke, & quench not the Spirit, but be fervent in spirit, serving the Lord. Let all your desires be, to be ever in the performance of all holy duties. Let it be your meate and drinke to be instant in prayer, to Pray continually, to Pray without ceasing, to be continually offering up spiritual sacrifices to your God in the Spirit; to hate the garment spotted by the flesh, to contemn and despise the worlds vanities; love not the world, nor the things thereof as they are in themselves, but set your affections upon the things [Page 89]which are above. Thus Saints, walke you in the spirit, that a sweete frame and disposition alwayes may appeare in you, in doing good unto all, loving your enemies, blessing them that curse you, doing good unto them that de­spightfully use you, and if it be possible, live peaceable with all men, walke in­offensively towards them that are with­out, and those within: yeeld to all men their due; be subject to the higher powers, even the powers that are or­dained of God, both Kings and Magi­strates, as farre as the word warrants, being subject to the ordinances of men for the Lords sake, so farre as they are not contrary to the minde of God; and yeeld tribute to whom tribute is due, honour to whom honour, and feare to whom feare is due. Be of a meeke and quiet spirit in every passage of your con­versation. Let the love of the brethren be in you abundantly, be as ready to do a brother good, as to do thy selfe good, in honour preferring one another; sim­pathising with the condition of others, and rejoyce with them that do rejoyce, and weepe with them that weepe, be­ing tender hearted, and bearing one another burdens, forgiving one another, [Page 90]even as God, for Christs sake forgave you; and though there may be diffe­rences in judgement among brethren; yet let there be a union in affection, Considering that there are severall de­grees of light given out to severall saints: some have higher measures of light then others have. And what if thou hast more light then thy brother? do not despise him, because he is more ignorant, for what hast thou that thou hast not received? but consider, that though he be now other wayes mind­ed, God shall reveale it to such a one in his owne time: and besides it may be, thy brother which seems to be much inferiour to thee, in some things, may exceede thee in the knowledge of the misteries of Christ in some particulars. And againe, though thy brother seeme to be in darkenesse unto thee, in some particulars; yet it may be, it is through thy ignorance that dost not see that light, that doth appeare to him: and though it doth not now appeare unto thee; yet it may appeare, though now it seeme an errour to thee There­fore in the meane time, though you differ in iudgment, yet be one in afecti­tion; and be followers of God as deere [Page 91]Chidren, and walke in love as Christ also hath loued us, and hath given him­selfe for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God, for a sweete smelling Sauour re­member how the Lord Jesus hath saide: hereby shall men know that you are my disciples, if you love one another. Oh therfore let the spirit of love sweetly ap­pear in you, and dwell in love. And let also humblenesse, and lowlynesse of minde, appeare in you, and condesend to men of low estate; and so walke in the frvtes of holynesse, in the spirit: that it may apeere to all, that the Spirit of God, and of glory resteth upon you, and in the Apostles words, whatsoe­ver things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, what­soever things are of good report, what­soever, things are lovely, thinke one these things; for the spirit is powered upon you, now (saies the Apostle 1. Cor. 3.17, 18. the Lord is that Spi­rit, and where the spirit, of the lord is there is libertie; and therefore you all, with open face, beholding as in a glasse the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image, from glory, to glory: even as by the Spirit of the Lord.

Lastly the last exhortation to the Saints, is: to walke in the joyes of the Spirit. The Spirit is your comforter and have you the comforter? why the [...] should you be sad? why should thy heart be troubled? banish therefore [...] sinfull sorrow, and sadnesse from your hearts; you that are saints. Reioyce in the Lord ye righteous, and let all the Children of Zion be joyfull in their kings yea reioyce evermore, and againe I say reioyce, your God, hath given you the comforter for this very end: there­fore be filled with joy in the Holy ghost.

Indeed had you not the spirit, you might be commanded to rejoyce long enough, & yet never be able to rejoyce, but now the Comforter is come, now the Spirit is given unto thee: What wantest thou now, to make thee joyfull? doth he not take of the things of the fa­ther, and of Christ, and show it unto thee? doth he not reveal to thee even the bosome thoughts of thy God? No man hath feene, or can reveale the Father; but the sonne which came from the bo­some of the Father: and he by his spirit reveales the thoughts, of the love of your God vnto you, from all eternity [Page 92]ye, and the exceeding love where with he hath loved you: he reveales the glori­ous designes of God in the Lord Jesus for thee; and the vnsearchable riches of his grace. And if so, how comes it to passe, that you that are Saints, some of you are so disquieted, and sadded in your spirits? Walk­ing as though you had still the spirit of bondage; which we have not now re­ceived and your hearts are so filled with sorrow? Certainly this is not the minde of your God; This is not a fruite of the Spirit, but of the flesh: for the fruits of the Spirit, are love, joy, peace, &c. But these distempering sadnesses, and feares come from the flesh: as you may observe it in your selves, when you give way to the flesh, and live below, (and not a bove in the spirit) as to the pleasures of the world, and upon creature com­forts: sorrow hath seazed upon you, and your hearts have bin fild with feare; for fear & sorrow is natural to the flesh: but you have the Spirit, therfore reioyce ever more, walking a bove the flesh; & al­waies hearken you to the sweet voice of the Spirit; and be you alwaies singing, and making melodie in your hearts to the Lord, being fild with joy un­speakable, [...] [Page 94]and full of glory. Which the Lord ( [...] these times of horror, and feare to [...] godly men) giue in abundantly vn [...] all them that love our Lord Jesus Chri [...] and his apearing and coming.

Now vnto the King Immortall all In­visible and the onely wise God, be honour and glory for ever and ever. AMEN.


This keyboarded and encoded edition of the work described above is co-owned by the institutions providing financial support to the Text Creation Partnership. Searching, reading, printing, or downloading EEBO-TCP texts is reserved for the authorized users of these project partner institutions. Permission must be granted for subsequent distribution, in print or electronically, of this EEBO-TCP Phase II text, in whole or in part.