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Chapter 15. The Perfection of the Law and Imperfection of Man

The law of God we confess and acknowledge most just, most equal, most holy, and most perfect: commanding those things which, being wrought in perfection, were able to give life, and able to bring man to eternal felicity.9999Lev. 18:5; Gal. 3:12; 1 Tim. 1:8; Rom. 7:12; Ps. 19:7-9;19:11. But our nature is so corrupt, so weak, and so imperfect, that we are never able to fulfill the works of the law in perfection.100100Deut. 5:29; Rom. 10:3. Yea, If we say we have no sin (even after we are regenerate), we deceive ourselves, and the verity of God is not into us.1011011 Kings 8:46; 2 Chron. 6:36; Prov. 20:9; Eccl. 7:22; 1 John 1:8. And therefore it behoved us to apprehend Christ Jesus, with his justice and satisfaction, who is the end and accomplishment of the law, by whom we are set at this liberty, that the curse and malediction of the law fall not upon us, albeit we fulfill not the same in all points.102102Rom. 10:4; Gal. 3:13; Deut. 27:26. For God the Father, beholding us in the body of his Son Christ Jesus, accepts our imperfect obedience, as it were perfect,103103Phil 2:15. and covers our works, which are defiled with many spots,104104Isa. 64:6. with the justice of his Son.

We do not mean that we are set so at liberty, that we owe no obedience to the law (for that before we have plainly confessed). But this we affirm, that no man in earth (Christ Jesus only excepted) has given, gives, or shall give in work, that obedience to the law which the law requires. But when we have done all things, we must fall down and unfeignedly confess, that we are unprofitable servants.105105Luke 17:10. And therefore whosoever boast themselves of the merits of their own works, or put their trust in the works of supererogation, boast themselves of that which is not, and put their trust in damnable idolatry.


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