« PreviousContinue »
Gentiles as well as Jews, every where to pent; it being his will, that repentance and remiffion of fins should be preached among a.! nations: But admitting that it has been God's command in all ages, and to all men, that they repent; as all men are indeed bound, by the law of nature, to a natural regentance, though all men are not called ye gospel to an evangelical one; yet I te sot what conclufions can be formed from seca against either abfolute election, se st redemption.
III. Though there is a sole conta it between evangel cal resecz ra sa
verfion, and parice
that fuck wits are real
ly repent, have der in w
repentance and cavin
grace of God and best of.
caufes of paction
deed only mandefier is save
finners, who are excran.
10 repent of it, and tor
the promue of powers
moit that car DE TERCE
tion, is only me, the
God, that teen=
remiffior of the
Christ, and not that they fhall hereby procure and obtain the thing it felf; though after all, neither evangelical repentance, and internal converfion, nor the grace of pardon are here intended; not evangelical repentance and internal converfion, as has been before obferved, nor the spiritual bleffing and grace of pardon; for though par don of fin is fignified by blotting it out, Pfal. li. 1, 9. Isa. xliii. 25. and xliv. 22. yet forgiveness of fin fometimes means no more than the removing a prefent calamity, or the averting of a threaten'd judgment, Exod. xxxii. 32. 1 Kings viii. 33, to 391 and is the sense of the phrase here. Thefe Jews had crucified the Lord of glory, and for this fin were threaten'd with miferable deftruction; the apoftle therefore exhorts them to repent of it, and acknowledge Jefus to be the true Meffiah; that fo, when wrath fhould come upon their nation, to the uttermoft, they might be delivered, and faved from the general calamity; which though would be terrible times to the unbelieving Jews, yet would be times of refreshing to the people of God, from troubles and perfecutions. Though the laft caufe may be confider'd, not as expreffing the time when their iniquities should be blotted out, but as a diftinct additional promife made to penitents, and be read with the other, thus ; That your fins may be blotted out, that the
times of refreshing may came; as they are by the Syriac and Arabic verfions, and to which the Ethiopic agrees, and is the reading preferred by Lightfoot; and the fenfe this; Repent of your fin of crucifying Chrift; acknowledge Jefus as the true Melfiah, and you shall not only be faved from the general deftruction of your nation, but shall have the gofpel, and the confolation of Ifrael with you. Jefus Chrift, who was first preached unto you, fhall be fent down unto you in the refreshing confolatory miniftry of the word, though he, in perfoh, must remain in heaven, until the times of reftitu tion of all things.
NUMB. XXXIII. Acts vi. gr. Yeftiff necked and uncircumcifet in how t ears, ye da always refit She Fole Gen As your fathers list, a to
Hough here was a bout ar sfered a 1 to
by an irresistible power, and that men may have fufficient grace for converfion, who are not converted, it will be proper not to omit them; their argument from them ftands thus; If the holy Spirit may be refifted when he acts in man, with a purpose and will to convert him, then he does not work converfion by an irresistible power, but the holy Spirit may be refifted, when he acts in man with a purpose and will to convert him. Therefore, &c. But,
I. That the Spirit of God in the operations of his grace upon the heart in converfion, may be refifted, that is, oppofed, is allowed; but that he may be fo refifted as to be overcome, or be hinder'd in, or obliged to ceafe from the work of converfion, fo as that it comes to nothing, where he acts with purpofe and will to convert, must be denied; for who bath refifted his will? who, in this fenfe, can refift it? No one inftance of this kind can ever be produced.
II. It should be proved, that the Spirit of God was in these perfons, and was acting in them with a defign to convert them; and that they had fufficient grace for converfion given them; and that that grace was the fame with that which is given to perfons who are only converted: Whereas it does not appear that they had any grace at all, fince
they are faid to be stiff necked, and uncircumcifed in heart and ears.
III. Suppofing the Spirit of God was acting in them with a purpose and will to convert them, it will be difficult to prove, that they fo refifted, and continued to refift him, as that they were not hereafter converted by him; we are fure that one of these perfons, namely, Saul, was afterwards really and truly converted; and how many more were so, we know not.
IV. The refiftance made by these persons, was not to the Spirit of God in them, of which they were deftitute, but to the Spirit of God in his minifters, in his apoftles, and particularly Stephen; nor to any internal operation of his grace, which does not appear to have been in them, but to the external miniftry of the word, and to all that objective light, knowledge, evidence and conviction, that it gave of Jefus's being the Meffiah; in which fense they are faid to reject the counsel of God against themselves, Luke vii. 30. and to put from them the word of God, Acts xiii. 46. Such who refift Chrift's minifters, refift him; and fuch who refift him may be said to refift his holy Spirit. Once more,
The word ἀντιπίπτετε, fignifies a rufhing against, and falling upon, in a rude and ho