« PreviousContinue »
to love Jehovah thy God."
Sanctification is also attributed to the Son. Eph. v. 25, 26. "Christ loved the church, and gave himself for it, that he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word." Tit. ii. 14. "that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself (unto himself as our Redeemer and King) a peculiar people."
Sanctification is sometimes used in a more extended sense, for any kind of election or separation, either of a whole nation to some particular form of worship, or of an individual to some office. Exod. xix. 10. "sanctify them today and to-morrow." xxxi. 13. "that ye may know that I am Jehovah that doth sanctify you." See also Ezek. xx. 12. Numb. xi. 18. "sanctify yourselves against to-morrow." Jer. i. 5. “before thou camest forth out of the womb, I sanctified thee, and I ordained thee a prophet unto the nations." Luke i. 15. "he shall be filled with the Holy Ghost, even from his mother's womb."
The external cause of regeneration or sanctification is the death and resurrection of Christ. Eph. ii. 4, 5. "when we were dead in sins, God hath quickened us together with Christ." v. 25, 26. "Christ gave himself for the church, that he might sanctify and cleanse it." Heb. ix. 14. "how much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God." x. 10. "by the which will we are sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ." 1 Pet. i. 2, 3. "through sanctification of the Spirit, unto obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ.... which hath begotten us again by a lively hope, by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead." John i. 7. "the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin."
Sanctification is attributed also to faith. Acts xv. 9. "purifying their hearts by faith;" not that faith is anterior to sanctification, but because faith is an instrumental and assisting cause in its gradual progress.
CHAP. XIX.-OF REPENTANCE.
THE effects of regeneration are REPENTANCE and FAITH. REPENTANCE, or rather that higher species of it called in Greek Távora, is THE GIFT OF GOD, WHEREBY THE REGEN
ERATE MAN PERCEIVING WITH SORROW THAT HE HAS OFFENDED
GOD BY SIN, DETESTS AND AVOIDS IT, HUMBLY TURNING TO GOD THROUGH A SENSE OF THE DIVINE MERCY, AND HEARTILY
STRIVING TO FOLLOW RIGHTEOUSNESS.
THE GIFT OF GOD; namely, of the Father through the Son. Acts v. 31. "him hath God exalted with his right hand to be a Prince and a Saviour, for to give repentance to Israel." Jer. xxxi. 18. "I have surely heard Ephraim bemoaning himself thus. ... turn thou me and I shall be turned, for thou art Jehovah my God." Acts xi. 18. “then hath God also to the Gentiles granted repentance unto life." Rom. ii. 4, 5. "thinkest thou this.... not knowing that the goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance? but after thy hardness and impenitent heart treasurest up," &c. 2 Tim. ii. 25. "if God peradventure will give them repentance."
PERCEIVING WITH SORROW. Psal. xxxviii. 4. "mine iniquities are gone over mine head as an heavy burden they are too heavy for me." 2 Kings xxii. 19. "because thine heart was tender, and thou hast humbled thyself before Jehovah, when thou heardest what I spake against this place .. and hast rent thy clothes and wept before me.” Psal. li. 3, 4. "I acknowledge my transgressions, and my sin is ever before me against thee, thee only have I sinned." Jer. iii. 13. "only acknowledge thine iniquity, that thou hast transgressed against Jehovah thy God." Ezek. xxxvi. 31. "then shall ye remember your own evil ways, and your doings
that were not good, and shall loathe yourselves in your own sight for your iniquities." v. 32. be ashamed and confounded for your own ways." xliii. 10. "that they may be ashamed of their iniquities." Rom. vi. 21. "those things whereof ye are now ashamed." 2 Cor. vii. 10. 66 godly sorrow worketh repentance to salvation not to be repented of." v. 11. "for behold this self-same thing, that ye sorrowed after a godly sort, what carefulness it wrought in you, yea, what clearing of yourselves, yea, what indignation, yea, what
fear, yea, what vehement desire, yea, what zeal, yea, what revenge."
THROUGH A SENSE OF THE DIVINE MERCY. Deut. iv. 29 -31. "but if from thence thou shalt seek Jehovah thy God with all thy heart." 2 Chron. xxx. 9. "for Jehovah your God is gracious and merciful, and will not turn away his face from you, if ye return unto him." Psal. li. 17. "the sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise." cxxx. 4. "there is forgiveness with thee, that thou mayest be feared." Isai. xix. 22. "they shall return even to Jehovah, and he shall be intreated of them, and shall heal them." lv. 7. "let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts, and let him. return unto Jehovah, and he will have mercy upon him." Ixvi. 2. "to this man will I look, even to him that is poor and of a contrite spirit, and that trembleth at my word." Jer. iii. 12. "return.... for I am merciful." Dan. ix. 4, 5, "I made my confession, and said, O Lord, the great and dreadful God-." Hos. xi. 8. "how shall I give thee up, O Ephraim? mine heart is turned within me, my repentings are kindled together." Jonah iv. 10, 11. "thou hast had pity for the gourd, for the which thou hast not laboured.... and should I not spare Nineveh?" James iv. 9. "be afflicted, and mourn, and weep, let your laughter be turned to mourning, and your joy to heaviness; humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he shall lift you up." Prov. xxviii. 13. "he that covereth his sins shall not prosper; but whoso confesseth and forsaketh them shall have mercy.'
HUMBLY TURNING TO GOD. 1 Kings viii. 48. "and so return unto thee with all their heart and with all their soul." Jer. 4. iv. "circumcise yourselves to Jehovah, and take away the foreskins of your heart." Hos. v. 15. "I will go and return to my place, till they acknowledge their offence, and seek my face." Acts iii. 19. "repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out."
DETESTS AND AVOIDS SIN, STRIVING TO FOLLOW RIGHTEOUSNESS. Psal. xxxiv. 14. "depart from evil, and do good." Isai. i. 16, 17. "wash you, make you clean; put away the evil of your doings from before mine eyes; cease to do evil, learn to do good." Amos v. 14, 15. "hate the evil, and love the good." Matt. iii. 8. "bring forth therefore fruits meet
for repentance.' Acts xxvi. 18. "to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan unto God." v. 20. "that they should repent, and turn to God, and do works meet for repentance."
By a comparison of these and similar texts, we may distinguish certain progressive steps in repentance; namely, conviction of sin, contrition, confession, departure from evil, conversion to good: all which, however, belong likewise in their respective degrees to the repentance of the unregenerate.
Confession of sin is made sometimes to God: 2 Sam. xxiv. 10. "David said unto Jehovah, I have sinned greatly in that I have done." Psal. xxxii. 5. "I acknowledge my sin unto thee," &c. 2 Chron. xxx. 22. "making confession to Jehovah, God of their fathers.' Isai. Ixiv. 6. " we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags.' Dan. ix. 4. "I made my confession, and said—.” Sometimes to men and that either privately, as James v. 16. "confess your faults one to another;" or publicly, Neh. ix. 2. "the seed of Israel stood and confessed their sins." Matt.
iii. 6. " "they were baptized of him in Jordan, confessing their sins." Acts xix. 18. "many that believed came and confessed, showing their deeds." Sometimes both to God and men: Josh. vii. 19. "give, I pray thee, glory to Jehovah God of Israel, and make confession unto him, and tell me now what thou hast done, hide it not from me." Confession of faith, which is another kind, does not belong to the present subject.
Repentance is either general, which is also called conversion, when a man is converted from a state of sin to a state of grace; or particular, when one who is already converted repents of some individual sin. General repentance is either primary or continued; from which latter even the regenerate are not exempt, through their sense of in-dwelling sin. Particular repentance is exemplified in the cases of David and Peter.
Repentance, in regenerate man, is prior to faith. Mark i. 15. "repent ye, and believe the gospel." Acts xix. 4. "John verily baptized with the baptism of repentance, saying unto the people, that they should believe." xx. 21. "testifying repentance toward God, and faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ." Therefore that sense of the divine mercy, which leads to re
pentance, ought not to be confounded with faith, as it is by the greater number of divines.
Chastisement is often the instrumental cause of repentance. Job v. 17, &c. "behold, happy is the man whom God correcteth; therefore despise not thou the chastening of the Almighty." Psal. xciv. 12. "blessed is the man whom thou chastenest, O Jah." cxix. 71. "it is good for me that I have been afflicted, that I might learn thy statutes." Prov. i. 23. "turn you at my reproof." iii. 11, 12. "my son, despise not the chastening of Jehovah, neither be weary of his correction; for whom Jehovah loveth he correcteth, even as a father the son in whom he delighteth." Isai. i. 25. "I will turn my hand upon thee, and purely purge away thy dross, and take away all thy tin." xlviii. 10. "behold, I have refined thee, but not with silver; I have chosen thee in the furnace of affliction." Jer. x. 24. " O Jehovah, correct me, but with judgment; not in thine anger, lest thou bring me to nothing." Lam. iii. 27, 28. "it is good for a man that he bear the yoke in his youth." Dan. xi. 35. "some of them of understanding shall fall, to try them, and to purge, and to make them white." Hos. v. 15. "in their affliction they will seek me early." 1 Cor. xi. 32. "when we are judged we are chastened of the Lord, that we should not be condemned with the world." Heb. xii. 7, 8. "if ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not? but if ye be without chastisement, whereof all are partakers, then are ye bastards, and not sons." Psal. xc. 3. "thou turnest man to destruction; and sayest, Return, ye children of men." God however assigns a limit to chastisement, lest we should be overwhelmed, and supplies strength for our support even under those inflictions which (as is sometimes the case) appear to us too heavy to be borne. Psal. cxxv. 3. "the rod of the wicked shall not rest upon the lot of the righteous, lest the righteous put forth their hands unto iniquity." Isai. lvii. 16. "I will not contend for ever, neither will I be always wroth, for the spirit should fail before me," &c. 2 Cor. i. 8-10. "we would not have you ignorant that we were pressed out of measure, above strength, &c. that we should not trust in ourselves, but in God which raiseth the dead: who delivered us from so great a death—.” He even seems to repent of what he had done, and through his