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NuмB. XXIX. John. v. 34
But these things, I fay, that ye might se javed.
HIS paffage of fcriprure is often pro
I. It is certain that the four to vi
ent to ilvanus ; for tough the tele
duced, were proper mods to
be faved. Now it is evident, that they wanted these, fince they had not the love of God in them, ver. 42. nor his word abiding in them, ver. 38. nor fo much as the knowledge of Chrift's divinity, or of his being the true Meffiah, ver. 18.
II. It is taken for granted, that these words regard a fpiritual and eternal salvation; whereas they may very well be underflood of a temporal one; and the sense of them be this; these things I fay, h. e. these teftimonies of my father, and of John, I produce, not so much for my own honour and glory, as for your good; that ye, through these teftimonies of me, may believe that I am the true Meffiah, and fo be Saved from the temporal ruin and deftrution, which will otherwife come upon you and your nation, for your disbelief, neglect, and contempt of me. But,
III. Admitting that Chrift fpoke these words with a view to the fpiritual and eternal falvation of his audience; it should be obferved, that he is here to be confidered as a preacher, a minifter of the circumcifion, fent to the loft sheep of the house of Ifrael, for whofe welfare he had a compaffionate regard and concern; and therefore published the things concerning his perfon, office and grace, indefinitely to them all, that he
might gair Tome, nut arvu I though he did as GL vo vere
and who were not: vnc
him is neither
IV. It will be
for impocee to prove, that the pertons or whom Cint fpoke these words, were not eternally aved; though, at the prefent time they were in believers, and deftitute of the grace of God, yet might hereafter be converted and ana bled to go to Chrift for life and falvation ; or at leaft, there might be fome among them who were the elect of God, and theep of Chrift; for whose fake Chrift might express himself in this manner, in order to bring them to the knowledge of him, and salvation by him; and therefore do not mitate either against any decree or act of preterition paffed by God, refpecting any pare of mankind, or the doctrines of particulie redemption and unfruftrable grace n
NUMB. XXX. John v. 40.
And, ye will not come to me, that ye might bave life.
'HESE words are ufually cited together with the former, and are urged for the fame purposes; particularly to fhew that Chrift feriously intended the falvation of fuch who would not come to him for it; and that man does not lie under any disability of coming to Chrift for life; did he, his not coming to Chrift would not be criminal in him; nor would he be blame-worthy for what he could not help. To which I anfwer;
I. That what Chrift intends, he intends feriously But it does not appear from these words, that he did intend the falvation of thefe perfons, who would not come to him, but rather the contrary; fince they look more like a charge exhibited against them, for their neglect of him as the way of life. and falvation, and trufting to the law of Mofes, and their obedience to it, and therefore did not receive him, or believe in him; and though Chrift declined bringing in an accufation directly and in form against
Whitby, p. 52, 73, 358.