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SERMON XXIV.2727   Preached October 11, 1691.

Romans, viii. 24.

We are saved by Hope.

Direction 7. I SHALL now go on with some further directions, and in the next place, take this.

That such need to make it much their business to under stand aright the nature of those things which are so absolutely necessary to being saved; to wit, not only to know that such and such things, so and so called, are requisite; or to understand the names of such as are requisite unto salvation, without distinct understanding of the things themselves, signified by those names. There is nobody that understands any thing of the Christian religion, but hath been informed, and will readily assent, that repentance is necessary to salvation; that faith is necessary to salvation; that a man if he be not regenerate cannot be saved; that if he be not converted he is not in the state of salvation; that if he do not mortify sin he must die, he must perish, and cannot be saved; that if he do not lead a life of holiness, he can never see God, must be excluded his presence for ever. Every one that lives under the gospel and under stands the first elements and principles of it, readily assents to all these things; but in the mean time if one do inquire what they do understand by the things signified by such names, here they are at a loss, and to seek, and give such confused and uncertain accounts, or have so indistinct apprehensions of them, that they are never the nearer being saved for having heard of those names; but I beseech you, what can it signify, if, when God saith, they that do not believe, his wrath abideth on them; and he hath “so loved the world, that he hath given his only begotten Son, that they that believe in him should not perish, but have ever lasting life;” you do agree to the faith of this that God hath said in his word, you say so too; but in the mean time you, in tend one thing by believing, when God, it is manifest, meaneth another. You put the name of faith, the name of repentance, the name of conversion, and the name of regeneration, 326upon quite another thing; What! will the names of these things save any body? Will any be the nearer salvation for something miscalled faith, that is not so? Some thing miscalled repentance, something miscalled regeneration, that are not so?

If you would rationally hope for salvation, so as that hope should really signify any thing for that end, you must understand the real influences and import of such things as these, that God hath put as necessary to salvation, and in immediate connection with it. That is, you must under stand faith in Christ to be that which brings your souls into a vital, living union with him, so as that thereby you have him, and have life; such a receptive act as adjoins you to him, so as that he thereupon becomes an immediate spring of life to your souls. If you do not understand by repentance, that mighty turn and change of the whole soul, by which, when it was a stranger to God before and alienated from him, it is now entirely turned to him, and therefore it is called repentance towards God; the whole bent of the soul being turned about towards God, as its best good, and as its sovereign Lord, to whom it was a stranger and rebel before: you do not apprehend aright. It is a vain thing for us to go about to delude ourselves with names; the great thing will be, what will be taken for faith and repentance, and the rest of the mentioned things, in the judgment day; and we may know now, if we will make it our business to know, and compare scripture with scripture, one thing with another. Those that will yield the necessity of regeneration, understand nothing (it may be) by being regenerate but being baptized; when the scripture else where tell us in other words, it signifies our implantation into Christ, we are born again, as we are inserted into him, and being in him, become new creatures: old things being done away, and all things being made new; such things as these, that you find in certain immediate connection with salvation; you must understand what they are, if you will ever think of entertaining hope of salvation, for such a purpose as that it shall contribute to your being saved. And,

Direction 8. Take this further direction, if you will ever hope to purpose in reference to the business of salvation, begin your hope with despair: despair, that you may hope, that is, that you may hope to any advantage. There is none in whom this hope comes to live, (as it is a living hope, that we are speaking of, and that the Spirit of God 327intends,) but there must be a death past upon that soul, before such living hope doth obtain, or hath place in it; such must die, that they may live; must be slain, that they may revive. All false hope must die, they must see themselves dead, lost, and perishing, before any such hope can have place in them; but here I must be a little more particular, and tell such of some things, whereof it is most necessary that they do despair. As, first, they must despair of ever being saved without those things, which you have already heard are necessary to salvation. And then, secondly, they must despair of ever being saved, for such things as are to be wrought in them, or done by them. And, thirdly, they must despair of ever attaining those things by their own power,

1. They must despair of ever being saved, without those things which have been already mentioned to you, that must be wrought in us, and that, thereupon, must have an exercise from us in order to our being saved; to wit, such as are, repentance to God, and faith in our Lord Jesus Christ, and the like; despair of ever being saved without these, and what goes accompanied therewith, (about priority I have no mind to trouble you with any discussion,) the full entire work of conversion, which, consider it seminally, is the same with regeneration: consider it progressively, it is the same with continued sanctification, proceeding here upon; a dying to sin, and living to righteousness. The same design for which Christ died, and bare our sins in his “body on the tree;” 1 Peter ii. 24, that we might “die to sin, and live to righteousness,” being healed by his stripes. Isaiah liii. 5. Now, without these things, we must despair of being saved, if ever we would hope for salvation upon good terms.

This I know is that way which an heart yet habitually carnal cannot but deeply and inwardly regret; but that is not to give us laws. The carnal heart was not consulted in framing and contriving the model of the gospel. God did never ask such the question, what will please you, that I may contrive the form and model of life and death, according to your inclination? Such may be apt to say, when they are urged, You must break off from every evil way; you must hate every thing of sin, how much soever you formerly loved it; you must deliver yourselves absolutely to the governing power of Jesus Christ as your Redeemer and Lord, both at once; when persons (I say) come to be closely thus 328urged, they will be apt to tell you, We have flesh and blood about us; what would you have us do? Why, I would put such upon considering seriously, Pray, for whom was the gospel composed? To what sort of creatures was it sent? Was it ever designed or intended to be sent up into heaven, to be preached to angels and glorious spirits above? Was it ever intended to be sent down into hell, to be preached to devils, and damned spirits there? No; it was meant for none but those that have flesh and blood about them; for none but them whose dwelling is in flesh. And would any excuse himself from repenting towards God, which is turning to him with the whole heart and soul? From believing in Christ by such a faith, as by which a vital union shall be contracted between the soul and him; with this that he hath flesh and blood about him? That is by the same excuse too, to excuse yourselves from being saved: I am not to be saved, because I have flesh and blood about me. For it is a vain imagination to think that God is at this time to alter his gospel, and make new terms of life and death for sinners; when as this gospel, as it was only made for such as dwell in flesh, or have flesh and blood about them. It is true, that hath inferred a necessity, that that in which you dwell should not rule you. If we live after the flesh we shall die; but if through the Spirit we do mortify the deeds of the body, we shall live. How plainly doth the word of God speak his mind to us, if we will attend to it? That, therefore, is one of the things that you must despair of, if you will hope to purpose; despair of ever being saved without such things to be wrought and done in you, as God hath put in immediate and certain connection with salvation. And,

2. Despair too of ever being saved for those things that are to be acted by us, or wrought in us: though they are works of the Holy Ghost, yet the Holy Ghost was not intended to merit for us; the Holy Ghost was not to be our High Priest, we must not think to invest the Holy Ghost with the offices of Christ, and to confound their offices, and the works of their offices. Therefore, let repentance be supposed never so sincere; and faith, conversion, and regeneration, never so true in their own kind; we must despair of being saved for these things, though we must also despair of ever being saved without them. “We through the Spirit, do wait for the hope of righteousness by faith.” Gal. v. 5. The Spirit doth frame souls to an absolute reliance upon 329that righteousness that is by faith, that and no other, and so accordingly to wait for the hope of that righteousness. And,

3. Despair of ever attaining to any of these things that are so necessary by your own power; despair of ever being able to turn yourselves, or to beget faith in yourselves, or to regenerate yourselves, or to mortify sin yourselves, which you are told must be by the Spirit. The scripture will not misguide us if we will attend to it; how plainly hath it told us, that our Lord Jesus Christ “is exalted to be a Prince and a Saviour, to give repentance and remission of sins?” Acts v. 31. And that it is God that gives men repentance, that they may recover themselves out of the snare of the devil, “who are led captive by him at his will.” 2 Tim ii. 26. And faith we are told is the gift of God, and it is reckoned among “the fruits of the Spirit.” Gal. v. 22. And regeneration we are told is by the Spirit. If a man be not born again (or born from above) by the Spirit, “he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.” John iii. 3, 6. “And if we by the Spirit mortify the deeds of the body, we shall live.” Rom. viii. 13. And we are likewise told, that “God hath chosen us to salvation, through sanctification of the Spirit, and belief of the truth.” 2 Thess. ii. 17.

Therefore are we to despair of our reaching of those things, that are so necessary to our salvation, by any power of our own. And so to despair is the way to hope; that will not lead to absolute despair, but it only leads to this respective necessary despair, which doth itself lead to hope. It doth not make the case hopeless, that such a thing is out of my power, when it is not to be expected, except in that godlike way that is honourable to him, and becomes the enthroned majesty of heaven, that he should be owned and applied unto as the author and donor of every good and perfect gift, and perfect giving. And we shall miserably cheat ourselves, if ever we think or hope to be saved by a repentance, or faith, or conversion, that are self-sprung things, self-created things. That repentance which is only the product of our own power, or that faith, or that conversion, will lure us, will lead us to perish; but you have heard often, again, and again, that the thing is not the less matter of hope, because it is not in our own power, when as the divine power that is to effect such things is upon such sure and firm grounds to be expected and looked for, that it should exert itself for such and such purposes; but to that purpose more will come in our way bye and bye; these 330are things that it is fit and needful that you should despair of that you may hope. And,

Direction 9 Take this further direction hereupon, That you are to put forth all your power to the very utmost, in order to the attaining those things that do accompany salvation, and that are in so necessary and certain connection, with it. Your life lies upon it:—without these things you must perish. There is no remedy, but you must perish. What remains then r but that you do, to the uttermost, put forth all the power you have, in order to your serious repentance, in order to your believing with the faith of God’s elect, and with a faith of the operation of God; and that you may have new hearts and right spirits created and renewed in you.

Objection. But it may be said, Doth not this contradict the former head? Are we to use all our power, even to the uttermost, in order to the obtaining true repentance, and true faith, and that we may be truly regenerate and turned unto God, when yet we are told, we must utterly despair of ever attaining these things by our own power?

Answer. Pray labour to understand matters that are in themselves plain. What is easier to understand, than the distinction between use and trust? Doth it follow, that because you are to distrust your own power, that therefore you are not to use it? May not a man lawfully use his money, and use his estate, because he is forbid to trust in uncertain riches? And because some do sinfully trust in chariots and horses, is it therefore unlawful to use a chariot or an horse? Consider that the natural faculties and powers that God hath given you, you are to be accountable for the use of to him. And what? Are you not then to use them? Your understandings, your considering power, your thinking power, are these exempt, from under the divine government, because you are not to trust them, as what were sufficient to do all your business? If you would but consider things with the understandings of men, you might easily know, that it is most indispensably incumbent upon us to do our uttermost, to strive as for our lives, to exert all our powers, while in the mean time, we acknowledge all our power is an insufficient thing. And therefore we are to cry and supplicate, to crave and implore heaven, for the addition of an higher and greater power than ours. This is just, this is rational, and suitable to the order of things between God and his intelligent creatures. And then again,

331

Direction 10. Let this further direction be considered, to wit, Constantly hope, that, by the divine power, you shall be enabled to reach and attain to those things that are, and he hath made necessary, for your salvation. And this hath two branches,

1. Constantly hope you shall attain them, otherwise, if you do not hope that hope, all is lost, and you are presently at a stand, and cannot move one step further towards being saved, or towards salvation as your end. All is lost, if that hope fail, that you shall attain those things that are necessary, by divine appointment and constitution, for salvation. For pray consider, if a man take a journey, (supposing of an hundred miles,) if he did not hope he should go through that journey, he would never begin it. It is the hope he shall go through, that doth excite and engage to begin, otherwise he would sit still at home; but then, if he doth hope that he shall go through this journey of an hundred miles, and reach such a place at length, he must hope, in order hereunto, that he shall go through the first mile. He cannot hope that he shall go the whole hundred miles, if he do not hope he shall go the first. So if you do hope you shall be saved, you must hope that you shall do things, be enabled to do things, that are necessary to being saved. He that doth not hope to reach a place, but a mile off, that is hi certain and direct way to a place an hundred miles off, and there is no other way, will never make one step at all towards that place. And this is your case, when God hath made it so absolutely necessary in order to your being saved, that you repent, that you turn to him, and come into union with his Son, and deliver yourselves up to him, take him to be yours, and give yourselves to be his: if you hope not, you shall reach these things, your hope of being saved will be a mad hope; as his must be a mad hope that he shall reach his hundred miles, when he doth not hope to reach the first mile, when there is no other way to such a place an hundred miles off, but by that a mile off. And therefore this hope must be fixed and kept alive, though I cannot say I have been brought to repentance yet, and to faith in the Son of God, yet I hope I shall. You must hope first for such a thing. And then,

2. Hope that it shall be brought about by a divine power, for otherwise, (as you have heard) you are not to hope for it. And positively, you must hope for it this way, and no other way. “According as his divine power hath given us all things pertaining to life and godliness; and given to us 332exceeding great and precious promises, that by them we might be partakers of the divine nature,” 2 Peter i. 3, 4. which carries all this in it. Here must be your hope. Such things have not been wrought and done in me yet, but through the grace of God, I hope that they shall. And,

Direction 11. Take heed that defeatments and delays do not subvert and overthrow in you this hope. Of this there is the greatest imaginable danger; and these two expressions, (defeatments and delays,) I purposely intend to refer to two sorts of persons, who may have their different concerns in this direction, to wit, especially a younger and an elder sort.

1. A younger sort, such as may be in a very great struggle between strong youthful lusts, and strong convictions, which may in some measure have taken hold of their souls. This is sometimes the case, discourses that I have had with divers, and bills that I have received from more, do assure me that this is a case that requires a great place and room in our consideration and discourse. There are those who now and then, (who in that age wherein lust and concupiscence have greater advantages to be predominant,) are taken hold of by the word, and it strikes conscience, and gets some advantages upon them. They are in a great loss in their own spirits. Vicious inclinations are strong; conviction upon their spirits hath some strength too. It may be, some such have found, that whereas here is a struggle, a strong earnest struggle, the conquest is easier over conscience than over inclination: it is an easier matter to overcome there; they easier baffle their light than they can their lusts. And when they have considered, under the power of conviction, that there was some necessity upon them to change their course, it may be, they have come to some resolution upon that consideration, that they would become other men; that they would lead another sort of life. It may be, the next temptation, or the next insinuation of a lewd, idle companion, hath proved too hard and too strong for them; they could not withstand; and the bonds of iniquities have held them faster than the bonds of their vows, and covenants, and solemn engagements, that they have taken upon their souls. They have broken loose from these bonds, and are held so much the faster by those former bonds: and hereupon, having once found themselves at liberty, they sell themselves to slavery, sell themselves to do evil; and the Spirit of God that was 333at work in them, is receded and gone: they began in the Spirit, they have ended in the flesh. There are now no more gales, not one breath of that Spirit upon their spirits any more. An hopeful gale they had, that brought them near to a safe harbour; but they are, all on a sudden, hurried back again to a raging sea, that casts up nothing but mire and dirt. What a fearful case is this? If they reflect upon themselves, they will be ready to say, What is to be done in this case? And truly if any one should say so to me, I should return the question, What will you do in this case? or what do you think is to be done in this case? Do you think there is no hope in the case? Will you say that? or if there is to be any hope, what shall that hope be of? or what are ye to hope for? Such a thing I would consider and debate with any such an one. Are you to have any hope at all? Are you to abandon all hope? Truly that is not like a reasonable creature to say so, that you are to abandon all hope, while you are yet on this side hell, and infernal flames have not yet seized you; you are not to put yourself into the state of a devil, whilst as yet, God hath not put you into that state. But if you are to hope at all, what are you to hope for? Are you to hope that God will save you upon other terms than he hath declared in his gospel? Are you to hope that he will make a new gospel, to comply with your humour and lustful inclination? Are you to hope for that? That certainly were the maddest hope that ever was taken up by any one. All hope you are to have is, that if you have any apprehension of your case, the grieved Spirit may return, the affronted, resisted Spirit, if you cry for its return; if you supplicate as for life, that Spirit that carries all the treasures of divine light, and life, and grace in it, may yet return. There have been instances of its having done so.

How famous is the story that we meet with in Church History, concerning that vicious young man, that was at first reduced by the ministry of the Apostle John, and brought to a great degree of seriousness! The Apostle, having occasion to absent himself from the place where he was, leaves him under the care of such an one, charging him with his soul; “Look (saith he) well to the soul of this young man.” After the Apostle was gone, the young man breaks out into his former excesses again, and herds himself with a company of thieves and cut-throats. The Apostle being returned, and inquiring after him, saying, What is become of that young man? The answer that was made 334him was, He is dead, dead in sin, dead in wickedness again: much like the usage that was in Pythagoras’s school, where if any had been in that school of virtue, and made some proficiency there for any considerable time, and relapsed into vice, they were solemnly cast out, and a coffin was brought into the place to hold a funeral for them as dead; so it is said of this young man, he was dead. But the Apostle makes inquiry after him, and finds him out, brings him to his feet, takes hold of him, down he falls,-and by the power of prayer and holy counsel, he was effectually reduced, and brought back again.

So it may yet be with some such horrid decliners and backsliders from the ways of God. If they apprehend whither they are going, whither their way leads them, and cry for the returning of the Holy Ghost as for life, as apprehending themselves lost if he return not, there is yet hope in this case. And it is by no means in the world, to be thought of, that such are to abandon all hope; for that is to make devils of themselves above ground, and to create to themselves a present hell on this side hell. You are within the reach of the gospel while you are on this side of the infernal regions; and it is a gospel of grace, crying to you, Return,—return. These are they to whom I had reference in that word defeats; do not let your hope be destroyed, by the defeats you have met with. But then,

2. There is another sort that I had a more distinct reference to in my thoughts, in using the word delays, in this direction, Take heed lest defeatments and delays destroy your hope. Now that of delays, I meant in reference to such as have sat long under the gospel, even to a grown age, and never have found any good effect by it; it hath wrought no change, made no impression. There may be many such, that were never vicious persons at all, never grossly vicious; but then they have lived in a place where some exercises of religion were a fashionable thing. They have had religion enough to carry them to a sermon on the Lord’s day in some Christian assembly, and perhaps to engage in somewhat of family duties; perhaps so, but they have sat with mere formality the greatest part of a life time, under the gospel, and never felt any real good by it, never expected any, never designed any; but come to a church, or a meeting-house, and spend an hour or two with the rest, in solemn attendances upon the worship of God, and never look after it more, (it may be,) till the week come 335about again. All their business is driving designs for this earth; “They mind earthly things,” as the Apostle’s character is of them, of whom also he saith, “their end is destruction.” Phil. iii. 18, 19. What it was to have their souls turned to God, to come to a solemn closure with Christ as their Redeemer and Lord, or to exercise themselves unto inward heart-godliness in any kind, they know not what belongs to it. It may be, they are just and up right in their dealings with those with whom they have to do; and they reckon that their justice towards men must expiate all their injustice towards God, their neglect of him, their slighting him, their casting him out of their thoughts, out of their fear and out of their desires.

This seems to be a very sad case, that a man should have lived all his days under the gospel, and it hath never made any impression on him as yet: the Spirit of God hath not as yet sensibly breathed, so as, at least, to beget any permanent and abiding effect; here hath been a long deferring, a long delaying of taking hold of these souls to purpose; and it may be, now their long delay may make such persons think, No, there is no change to be hoped for, nothing to be expected, none to be looked for; I have sat so long, so many years, ten, twenty, or thirty, (it may be,) forty years, under the gospel, under such a ministry, and never hath there been any such effect wrought upon me, and I do not think there ever will.

Oh! take heed, lest the having any such work upon you deferred so long, do destroy hope that ever such work shall be done; for then again, all is lost if you be hopeless; if there be not a vital hope and expectation, from time to time, in such and such a word, that some good may be done in my soul, that I may hear somewhat that I may feel, that the word may yet drop that may have life in it, that may have power in it. If you do not hope for this, if you do not expect such a thing, you are, as much as you can, putting yourselves quite out of the way of being saved, or having the reasonable hope of it; for still I must say, you are not to expect a new gospel, that God will save you without those necessary pre-requisites to salvation, without repentance, without faith, without conversion, and without sanctification. And therefore in the last place,

Direction 12. That which I would lastly add, by way of direction to this sort of persons is, that you would see to it, that though hope in these cases must not be thrown away, that yet it be qualified with such concomitants 336as are proper and suitable in such a case. They are such as these; I will but name them, that the next time my discourse may directly respect the other case, that of perseverance.

1. Prayer. Your hope in such a case as this must always be accompanied with prayer. It must be praying, supplicating hope. It is suitable to your case, if you hope to pray; and never hope without prayer. When we are exhorted to take to ourselves the “helmet,” which we are told “is the hope of salvation,” it is presently subjoined, “praying always with all prayer and supplication.” Eph. vi. 17. with 1 Cor. v. 8. These must be conjunct; if we hope, we must continue to pray. Give yourselves to prayer, to all prayer and supplication, otherwise we do (as much as possible) blast all our hope, and it can never be an helmet to us; it will betray our head, not cover it, not protect it.

2. Deep Humility. Join deep humility with your hope. Let it be humble hope. Such an one should “put his mouth in the dust, if there might be any hope.” Lam. iii. 29. And,

3. Self Loathing. Join with itself-loathing, self-abhorrence; not only of yourselves as mean creatures, but as vile and odious; and yet hope, join hope with that self-abasing temper, self-loathing of the Publican: then will your sense be, (as his,) “God be merciful to me a sinner,” who it is said at last went away justified and accepted. If you be fair in your own eyes, if your sense be that of the Laodicean Church, “I am rich, and increased in goods, and have need of nothing, and do not know that you are wretched, and miserable, and blind, and naked;” you have no place in you for that hope that will do you any good; but such self reviling thoughts, “If I were perfect, yet would I not know my own soul, I would despise my life;” how well doth hope do in such a tempered spirit as this? How suitable a soil is this for that heavenly hope to grow and flourish in? And,

4. Watchfulness. Join to your hope watchfulness and vigilancy. Watchfulness may respect both God and yourselves. Watchfulness respecting God is exercised in continual looking towards him: when shall that happy time come? when shall any beam of light descend? when shall any influence of grace flow in? Watchfulness respecting yourselves is exercised in watching over a treacherous heart: and know, that whenever you are to design such a 337thing, as your own salvation, and so accordingly to hope for it, a main and principal, and immediate object of your hope must be, that you shall be saved from yourselves; and thereupon indeed, it is a most self-contradicting hope, to hope I shall be saved, without hoping that sin shall be overcome. I shall gain the conquest at last over predominating corrupt inclinations, whether more grossly sensual ones, or whether avaricious ones, or ambitious ones, and the like; for do not you know, that our Lord Jesus Christ hath therefore his name of Jesus, a Saviour, because he was to save his people from their sins: and do you think you shall be saved, without being saved from yourselves, your sinful selves? This is to hope you shall be saved without salvation; this is to hope with such an hope, as wherewith you shall tear a thing from itself, to hope you shall be saved without being saved. If ever you are to be saved, you are to be saved from yourselves; and therefore, yourselves are to be the great object of your watchfulness, your continual vigilancy; watching over yourselves, as your worst and most dangerous enemy. I am to fear hell from myself, death from myself, a curse from myself; and lest I be a continual spring of all misery and woe to myself, there must be a continual watchfulness over ourselves, to repress all ebullitions of corrupt nature at the first. Oh! this lustful heart! This proud heart! This ambitious heart! This sensual heart! A severe self-inspection into, and watchfulness over ourselves, is that which must be in conjunction with hope. Watch and hope, be sober and hope to the end. That spiritual sobriety carries vigilancy in it, a continual watchfulness over yourselves. And again,

5. Patience. this hope must be accompanied with patience. Doth not the context tell you so? “We are saved by hope, but hope that is seen is not hope: but if we hope for that we see not, then do we with patience wait for it.” God is not bound to your time, he hath not come in yet; suppose he do not strike that stroke upon your heart this day, that is necessary to your being saved. Why hope that he will the next day, or the next after that, “If we hope for that we see not, then do we with patience wait for it.” “Blessed is he that watcheth at the doors,” that waiteth at the posts of wisdom’s gates; “for he that findeth me, findeth life, and shall obtain favour from the Lord.” Prov. viii. 34, 35. I have not met with him that is to be the life of my soul yet; but I will wait, I will miss no opportunity, I will be always at the posts of wisdom’s door, I may find 338him at last, who will be the life of my soul; and there all my hopes and all my concernments are involved and wrapt up together. And in the last place,

6. Diligence. You must join diligence with hope; an industrious, laborious diligence. It must be a working, operative hope, like that of the husbandman, who ploweth in hope, and soweth in hope, that he may be partaker of his hope, as the Apostle’s allusion is; so must you, as to this spiritual husbandry in which you must be engaged, you must strive in hope, and labour in hope. And if yours be not an hope that will put you upon striving and labouring, it is a dead hope, an useless hope; and such as can contribute nothing to your salvation. And so I have done with those directions that are requisite as to the former sort, the unregenerate and unconverted; the next will respect the other sort, and their case, to wit, that of converts, so as to influence their perseverance unto salvation.


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