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And if you be among these few, I will tell you of two or three things you have left behind you; " For it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle,” than for a man to carry them along with him, in his passage through this “gate of believing in the Lord Jesus Christ."

1st, You have left self behind you; for, says Christ, “if any man will come after me, let him deny himself,” particularly, self-righteousness, or the works of the law, in point of justifi. cation, and acceptance. This can never go in through the gate; no, no, Publicans and harlots," says Christ to the self-righteous Pharisees, " go into the kingdom of God before you." So soon as ever Paul passes through this gate, though before he was, “ touching the righteousness which is in the law, blameless," yet then he reckoned it but dung.

2dly, You have left your sins and lusts behind you. The narrow gate of salvation will not admit of these, neither: so soon as ever a man enters this gate, he cries with Ephraim, " What have I to do any more with idols ? if I have done iniquity, I will do no more.” Yea, though they were as

I dear and near to him as his right hand, and his right eye, he will not spare them. No, he casts them all to the moles and bats, and wages war for ever against every known sin.

3dly, You have left the love of the world; for “ if any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him." "The friendship of this world is enmity with God." The love of God and the love of the world cannot reign in the same heart; “No man can serve two masters; we cannot serve God and Mammon.” So soon as ever a man passes through this gate, he gets the eye of his understanding opened, to see that God's verdict of it is true, that it is all vanity and vexation of spirit. And then as he falls out of conceit with the things of this world, as his portion, so he quits the ways and courses of this world, according to that exhortation of the apostle, “Be not conformed to this world, but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind." And particularly he quits carnal reason and policy, as his guide, in the things of Christ, and mat. ters that concern the glory of God, and salvation of his soul. As you see in the apostle Paul, so soon as “it pleased God,” says he, "to reveal his Son in me, immediately I conferred not with thesh and blood."

4thly, We are told here also, that the followers of Christ, the glorious Breaker, “ go out at the gate that he breaks up to them.” An expression like this we have, John x. 9: "1 am the door: by me, if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.” So soon as the poor soul passes through the gate, he finds some things without the gate as it were, which he could never find before. I

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The man,


shall instance a few, among many things, he goes out to, when “ he passes through the gate.”

1. He goes out from darkness to light; “Ye were sometimes,darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord.” He gets the 66

eyes of his understanding opened, to know what is the hope of his calling, and what the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints." The man begins to see things that were not seen by him before: He sees the holiness of the law, the majesty of the Lawgiver, the exceeding sinfulness of sin, the glory of Christ, the beauties of holiness, the nothingness of things temporal, and the importance of things eternal. 2. He goes

out from death to life. The man, before he passed this gate, was dead, legally dead, spiritually dead, and every moment in danger of going down to the second death; but now he enters into life, into a life of justification, having the hand-writing cancelled and cross-scored by the blood of the Lamb: “ There is no condemnation to them that are in Christ Jesus:" No, they are alive unto - God through Christ. He enters into a life of sanctification and holiness. who before was wallowing among the pots, gets the beauty of the Lord his God put upon him; by which he is made to shine like the wings of a dove. He enters into a life of consolation, arising from the intercourse and fellowship that he now finds with the Lord. The light of God's countenance puts more gladness in his heart, “ than when corn, and wine, and oil, doth abound.” In a word, a man no sooner goes out by this gate, than he enters into life eternal: "For he that hath the Son hath life. He that believeth in the Son hath everlasting life.” And, like an heir of such inheritance, he carries himself like, a stranger in the earth, looking for a city which hath foundations, whose builder and maker_is God."

3. The man goes out from bondage: the bondage of sin, Satan, and the curse, to “ the glorious liberty; of the children of God:" so that the man does not look on it any longer as a piece of thraldom, like Doeg, to be “detained before the Lord,” in his ordinances. No, no, he is ready to say, Psal. xxvii. 4: “One thing have I desired of the Lord, and that will I seek after, that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the Lord, and to inquire after him in his temple.” Psal. Ixxxiv. 10: “For a day in thy courts is better than a thousand: I had rather be a door-keeper in the house of my God, than to dwell in the tents of wickedness.” It is no bondage to him to walk in the strict and cleanly ways of holiness. No, he finds sin and the ways of it to bring him under a spirit of bondage; but, as



for the ways of the Lord, they are his delight. He rejoices to work righteousness; and he is ready to say with David, “O that my ways were directed to keep thy statutes! My soul breaketh with the longing that it hath unto thy righteous judgments at all times.” But I do not insist farther on this use.



The breaker is come up before them; they have broken up, and have passed

through the gate, and are gone out by it; and their king shall pass before them, and the Lord (or Jehovah) on the head of them.---Micah 11. 13.


Thirdly, A third use I make of the doctrine, may be by way of Terror to all the wicked and ungodly world, who are living in a state of sin and rebellion against God.

This mighty Breaker will take the field against you, and O, when he whets“ his glittering sword, and his hand takes hold on judgment, he will render vengeance unto his enemies."

Quest. Who are they that may be ranked among the number of the enemies of Christ, whom he will break, as with a rod of iron? I answer,

1st, The great potentates of the earth, who do not employ their power in the service of his kingdom; or who employ their power to the hurt and prejudice of his cause and interest in the world: they are not exempted from his authority, no, they must stand on a level with others before this awful Breaker; Psal. ii. 9: “ Thou shalt break them with a rod of iron, thou shalt dash them in pieces like a potter's vessel. Be wise now, therefore, O ye kings, be instructed, ye judges of the earth.” When men of power and authority begin to kick against him, he can, with the greatest ease, be avenged on them, for he “ shall cut off the spirit of princes; he is terrible to the kings of the earth; he pours contempt upon princes, and strikes through kings in the day of his wrath."

2dly, This mighty Breaker will, in his own time, take the field against all unfaithful ministers, and shepherds, who, instead of feeding the flock of Christ, “ feed themselves with the fat;" and who, instead of gathering, scatter the Lord's tlock, and rule them with rigour and cruelty. To this pur


pose you may read the whole 34th chapter of Ezekiel, from the beginning to the end, at your leisure; and see whether or not that passage be applicable to any of us, who are called shepherds at this day.

3dly, The Breaker will take the field against all ignorant persons, who live in darkness in the midst of light ; “ It is a people of no understanding; therefore he that made them will not have mercy on them, and he that formed them will show them no favour.

4thly, Against all unbelievers, who reject the offers of his grace through Christ : “ He that believeih not is condemned already, and the wrath of God abideth on him." He will come “in flaming fire, taking vengeance on all that know not God, and obey not the gospel.”

5thly, Against all nominal professors, who rest satisfied with a name to live, whilst dead in sin.

6thly, Against all covenant breakers, who deal deceitfully with God or man in the matter of solemn vows, whether national or personal; a heavy charge, which we in this land may take home, and for which, it is to be feared, God will be avenged on us : “ Shall he break the covenant, and be delivered ?" "No,' says the Lord, “I will bring a sword upon you, which shall avenge the quarrel of my covenant."


7thly, He will come up as a Breaker against all apostates and backsliders, who seemed to run well in the ways of God, but quickly turn aside, like a deceitful bow, to crooked ways. Many of you have been lifting up your hands to the most high God at a communion table, making a solemn profession to God, angels, and men, that you will follow the Lord, whithersoever he goes. Oh, for the Lord's sake, beware of act. ing a perfidious part with God, like those, Psal. lxxviii. 35: “ Who remembered God as their Rock, and the high God as their-Redeemer, but whose hearts were not right with him, neither were they steadfast in his, covenant,” ver. 37. For “ backsliders in heart shall be filled with their own ways." “ No man putting his hand to” God's “ plough, and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God.

8thly, Against all unclean persons who wallow in the puddle of their abominable lusts, Heb. xiii. 4: “Whoremongers and adulterers God will judge.” You are by name and surname excluded out of the kingdom of heaven, 1 Cor. vi. 6–8.

9thly, Against all the proud and haughty ones of the earth, who carry themselves insolently towards others; as if they were not their fellow creatures, or worthy to be set with the dogs of their flock. All who pride themselves in their riches, ornaments, wisdom, honours, or preferments, and are listed up in their hearts with these or the like things; the Breaker




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will be upon you with his rod of iron: Is. ii. 11, 12: “ The lofty looks of man shall be humbled, and the baughtiness of men shall be bowed down, and the Lord alone shall be exalted in that day: for the day of the Lord of hosts shall be upon every one that is proud and lofty, and upon every one that is listed up, and he shall be brought low.”

10thly, The Breaker will come up against magistrates and elders that do injury to the Lord's vineyard, and spoil his poor people of any rights or liberties he allows them, whether as men or Christians. See to this purpose, Is. ii. 14, 15: “ The Lord will enter into judgment with the ancients of his people, and the princes thereof;" that is, the great men that bear rule, and have authority in their hand; " for ye have eaten up the vineyard, the spoil of the poor is in your houses. What mean ye, that ye beat my people to pieces, and grind the faces of the poor, saith the Lord of hosts ?” Some who are guilty this way, may perhaps screen themselves with some colour of law: but if any such be hearing me at present, I warn them, in the name of God, that their cob-web pretences will stand them in no stead, when the Breaker takes the field against them.

11thly, The Breaker will come up against all such as declare their sin as Sodom, and who, instead of taking with the reproofs of the word, the reproofs of conscience, the reproofs of providence, do harden their hearts as if they would bid Heaven defiance, and, like swine, turp about and rend those who cast the jewel of a reproof before them; “ He that. being often reproved, hardeneth his neck, shall suddenly be destroyed, and that without remedy.” 0 ! " consider this, ye that forget God, lest he tear you in pieces, when there is none to deliver” vou out of his hand.

And because all this and many other evils are prevalent in the day and generation in which we live, we have reason to fear, that some breaking calamity or other is at the door; and let none such promise themselves impunity, for there is no escaping the stroke of this awful Breaker; no, no, whither will

ye fiee from his presence? See an awful lecture to this purpose, Amos ix. 2-6, &c.

That I may, if possible, strike terror into the hearts of a wicked and ungodly world, that they may awake, and flee from the wrath that is to come, I shall take notice of a few breaking engines that this mighty Breaker has at hand, with which he can reach a blow to them.

1. He has a breaking arm. Who has an arm like God? “His right hand and his holy arm has gotten him the victory over all his enemies, and will do so to the end of the worlă.

2. He has a breaking countenance. When he frowns upon

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