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not only in regard of the matter contained in it, but also in respect of the authority of God the Creator who gave it.i Neither doth Christ in the gospel any way dissolve, but much strengthen, this obligation.k
VI. Although true believers be not under the law as a covenant of works, to be thereby justified or condemned ;? yet is it of great use to them, as well as to others; in that, as a rule of life, informing them of the will of God and their duty, it directs and binds them to walk accordingly; m discovering also the sinful pollutions of their
commandment which ye had from the beginning. Rom. iii. 31. Do we then make void the law through faith? God forbid: yea, we establish the law. Rom. vi. 15. What men ? shall we sin, because we are not under the law, but under grace? God forbid.
i James ii. 8, 10, 11. If ye fulfil the royal law according to the Scripture, Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself, ye do well.-For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all. For he that said, Do not commit adultery, said also, Do not kill. Now if thou commit no adultery, yet if thou kill, thou art become a transgressor of the law. Rom. iii. 19. Now we know that what things soever the law saith, it saith to them who are under the law: that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God.
* Matt. v. 18, 19. For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled. Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven: but whosoever shall do and teach them, the same shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven. Rom. iii. 31. Do we then make void the law through faith? God forbid : yea, we establish the law.
VI. i Rom. vi. 14. For sin shall not have dominion over you: for ye are not under the law, but under grace. Rom. viii. 1. There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus. Gal. iii. 13. Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us: for it is written, Cursed is every one that langeth on a tree. See Gal. iv. 4, 5; Acts xiii. 39.
m Rom. vii. 12, 22, 25. Wherefore the law is holy, and the commandment holy, and just, and good.-For I delight in the law of God after the inward man. I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord. So then with the mind I myself serve the law of God; but with the flesh the law of sin. Psa. cxix. 5. O that my ways were directed to keep thy statutes! 1 Cor. vii. 19. Circumcision is nothing, and uncircumcision is nothing, but the keeping of the commandments of God. See Gal. v. 14, 18-23.
nature, hearts, and lives ; so as, examining themselves thereby, they may come to further conviction of, humiliation for, and hatred against sin ;o together with a clearer sight of the need they have of Christ, and the perfection of his obedience.p It is likewise of use to the regenerate, to restrain their corruptions, in that it forbids sin;9 and the threatenings of it serve to show what even their sins deserve, and what afflictions in this life they may expect for them, although freed from the curse thereof threatened in the law. The promises of it, in like manner, show
n Rom. vii. 7. What shall we say then? Is the law sin? God forbid. Nay, I had not known sin, but by the law: for I had not known lust, except the law had said, Thou shalt not covet. Rom. iii. 20. For by the law is the knowledge of sin.
• James i. 23, 25. For if any be a hearer of the word, and not a doer, he is like unto a man beholding his natural face in a glass.-But whoso looketh into the perfect law of liberty, and continueth therein, he being not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the work, this man shali be blessed in his deed. Rom. vii. 9, 14, 24. For I was alive without the law once; but when the commandment came, sin revived, and I died.- For we know that the law is spiritual: but I am carnal, soid under sin.-0 wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death?
P Gal. iii. 24. Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith. Rom. viii. 3, 4. For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh; That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. Rom. vii. 24, 25. () wretched man that I am ! who shall deliver me from the body of this death? I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord. So then with the mind I myself serve the law of God; but with the flesh the law of sin.
9 James ii. 11. For he that said, Do not commit adultery, said also, Do not kill. Now if thou commit no adultery, yet if thou kill, thou art become a transgressor of the law. Psa. cxix. 128. Therefore I esteem all thy precepts concerning all things to be right; and I hate every false way.
" Ezra ix. 13, 14. And after all that is come upon us for our evil deeds, and for our great trespass, seeing that thou our God hast punished us less than our iniquities deserve, and hast given us such deliverance as this; Should we again break thy commandments, and join in affinity with the people of these abominations? wouldest not thou be angry with us till thou hadst consumed us, so that there should be no remnant nor escaping? Psa. lxxxix. 30-34. If his children forsake my law, and walk not in my judgments; If they break my statutes,
them God's approbation of obedience, and what blessings they may expect upon the performance thereof, although not as due to them by the law as a covenant of works: ! so as a man's doing good, and refraining from evil, because the law encourageth to the one, and deterreth from the other, is no evidence of his being under the law, and not under grace.u
VII. Neither are the forementioned uses of the law
and keep not my commandments; Then will I visit their transgression with the rod, and their iniquity with stripes. Nevertheless my lovingkindness will I not utterly take from him, nor suffer my faithfulness to fail. My covenant will I not break, nor alter the thing that is gone out of my lips.
& Psa. xxxvii. 11. But the meek shall inherit the earth; and shall delight themselves in the abundance of peace. Psa. xix. 11. Moreover by them is thy servant warned : and in keeping of them there is great reward. See Lev. xxvi. 1-11; 2 Cor. vi. 16; Eph. vi. 2; Matt.
Gal. ii. 16. Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified. Luke xvii. 10. So likewise ye, when ye shall have done all those things which are commanded you, say, We are unprofitable servants: we have done that which was our duty to do.
u Rom. vi. 12, 14. Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, that ye should obey it in the lusts thereof.- For sin shall not have dominion over you: for ye are not under the law, but under grace. Heb. xii. 28, 29. Wherefore we receiving a kingdom which cannot be moved, let us have grace, whereby we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear. For our God is a consuming fire. 1 Pet. iii. 8-12. Finally, be ye all of one mind, having compassion one of another; love as brethren, be pitiful, be courteous: Not rendering evil for evil, or railing for railing: but contrariwise blessing; knowing that ye are thereunto called, that ye should inherit a blessing. For he that will love life, and see good days, let him refrain his tongue from evil and his lips that they speak no guile: Let him eschew evil, and do good; let him seek peace, and ensue it. For the eyes of the Lord are over the righteous, and his ears are open unta their prayers : but the face of the Lord is against them that do evil, Psa. xxxiv. 12–16. What man is he that desireth life, and loveth many days, that he may see good ? Keep thy tongue from evil, and thy lips from speaking guile. Depart from evil, and do good, seek peace, and pursue it. The eyes of the LORD are upon the righteo and his ears are open unto their cry. The face of the Lord is against them that do evil, to cut off the remembrance of them from the earth.
contrary to the grace of the gospel, but do sweetly comply with it;w the Spirit of Christ subduing and enabling the will of man to do that freely and cheerfully, which the will of God, revealed in the law, requireth to be done.2
OF CHRISTIAN LIBERTY, AND LIBERTY OF CONSCIENCE.
1. The liberty which Christ hath purchased for believers under the gospel consists in their freedom from the guilt of sin, the condemning wrath of God, the curse of the moral law,a and in their being delivered from this present evil world, bondage to Satan, and dominion of sin, from the evil of afflictions, the sting of death, the
VII. w Gal. iii. 21. Is the law then against the promises of God? God forbid : for if there had been a law given which could have given life, verily righteousness should have been by the law. See Tit. ii. 11-14.
* Ezek. xxxvi. 27. And I will put my Spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes, and ye shall keep my judgments, and do them. Heb. viii. 10. For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, saith the Lord : I will put my laws into their mind, and write them in their hearts: and I will be to them a God, and they shall be to me a people. See Jer. xxxi. 33.
I. a Tit. ii. 14. Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works. 1 Thess. i. 10. And to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead, even Jesus, which delivered us from the wrath to come. Gal. iii. 13. Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us : for it is written, Cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree. Rom. viii. 1. There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus.
5 Gal. i. 4. Who gave himself for our sins, that he might deliver us from this present evil world, according to the will of God and our Father. Acts. xxvi. 18. To open their eyes, and to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan unto God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins, and inheritance among them which are sanctified by faith that is in me. Rom. vi. 14. For sin shall not have dominion over you : for ye are not under the law, but under grace. 1 John i. 7. But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin,
victory of the grave, and everlasting damnation ; C as also in their free access to God,d and their yielding obedience unto him, not out of slavish fear, but a child-like love, and a willing mind.e All which were common also to believers under the law :f but under the New Testament, the liberty of Christians is further enlarged in their freedom from the yoke of the ceremonial law, to which the Jewish Church was subjected ; 9 and in greater boldness of access to the throne of grace,h and in fuller communi
c Psa. cxix. 71. It is good for me that I have been afflicted ; that I might learn thy statutes. Rom. viii. 28. And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.
1 Cor. xv. 51–57. So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory. ( death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory ? The sting of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the law. But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. See Rom. viii. 1.
d Rom. v. 1, 2. Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ : By whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God. Eph. ii. 18. For through him we both have access by ore Spirit unto the Father. Eph. iii. 12. In whom we have boldness and access with confidence by the faith of him. Heb. x. 19. Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus.
e Rom. viii. 14, 15. For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God. For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father. Gal. iv. 6. And because ye are sons, God hath sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, crying, Abba, Father. 1 John iv. 18. There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love.
; Gal. iii. 9, 14. So then they which be of faith are blessed with faithful Abraham.-That the blessing of Abraham might come on the Gentiles through Jesus Christ; that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith.
g Gal. v. 1. Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage. Acts xv. 10. Now therefore why tempt ye God, to put a yoke upon the neck of the disciples, which neither our fathers nor we were able to bear?
* Heb. iv. 14, 16. Seeing then that we have a great high priest, that is passed into the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our