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TO PROFESSING CHRISTIANS 1837, LECTURE IV - Religion of the Law and Gospel paragraph 13

     3. The distinction between law religion and gospel religion does not consist in the fact that the gospel is any less strict in its claims, or allows any greater latitude of self-indulgence than the law. Not only does the gospel not cancel the obligations of the moral law, but it does in no degree abate them. Some people talk about gospel liberty; as though they had got a new rule of life, less strict, and allowing more liberty than the law. I admit that it has provided a new method of justification, but it everywhere insists that the rule of life is the same with the law. The very first sentence of the gospel, the command to repent, is in effect a re-enactment of the law, for it is a command to return to obedience. The idea that the liberty of the gospel differs from the liberty of the law, is erroneous.

 

 


THE OBERLIN EVANGELIST 1839 paragraph 1117 1087 Lecture XIX. Legal and Gospel Experience ...

2. It implies, that he was so upheld by grace that he found himself able to go forward in the service of God without being brought under the influence of fear and legal motives, and thus again entangled with the clay.

V. The consequences of this experience.

1. A new song was put into his mouth. He could now praise God. I have said that a man under legal influences cannot praise God. The attempt is mockery as every one knows who has been in this state. Praise is therefore a new song to the soul who has passed into gospel liberty.

 

 


THE OBERLIN EVANGELIST 1840 paragraph 278 21 Lectures I. - IX. Sanctification- No.'s 1 - 9 ...

(d) He keeps up the personal pronoun and passes into the 8th chapter; at the beginning of which, he represents himself or the person of whom he is speaking, as being not only in a different but in an exactly opposite state of mind. Now if the seventh chapter contains Paul's experience, whose experience is this in the eighth chapter? Are we to understand them both as the experience of Paul? If so, we must understand him as first speaking of his experience before and then after he was sanctified. He begins the eighth chapter by saying, "There is now no condemnation to them who are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit;" and assigns as a reason, that "the law of the spirit of life in Christ Jesus had made him free from the law of sin and death." The law of sin and death was that law in his members, or the influence of the flesh, of which he had so bitterly complained in the seventh chapter. But now it appears that he has passed into a state in which he is made free from this influence of the flesh--is emancipated and dead to the world, and to the flesh, and in a state in which "there is no condemnation." Now if there was no condemnation in the state in which he was, it must have been, either because he did not sin; or, if he did sin, because the law did not condemn him; or because the law of God was repealed or abrogated. Now if the penalty of the law was so set aside in his case, that he could sin without condemnation, this is a real abrogation of the law. For a law without a penalty is no law, and if the law is set aside, there is no longer any standard, and he was neither sinful nor holy. But as the law was not and cannot be set aside, its penalty was not and cannot be so abrogated as not to condemn every sin. If Paul lived without condemnation, it must be because he lived without sin.

To me it does not appear as if Paul speaks of his own experience in the seventh chapter of Romans, but that he merely supposes a case by way of illustration, and speaks in the first person and in the present tense, simply because it was convenient and suitable to his purpose. His object manifestly was, in this and in the beginning of the eighth chapter, to contrast the influence of the law and of the gospel--to describe in the seventh chapter the state of a man who was living in sin, and every day condemned by the law, convicted and constantly struggling with his own corruptions, but continually overcome,--and in the eighth chapter to exhibit a person in the enjoyment of gospel liberty, where the righteousness of the law was fulfilled in the heart by the grace of Christ. The seventh chapter may well apply either to a person in a backslidden state, or to a convicted person who had never been converted. The eighth chapter can clearly be applicable to none but to those who are in a state of entire sanctification.

 

 


THE OBERLIN EVANGELIST 1840 paragraph 279 21 Lectures I. - IX. Sanctification- No.'s 1 - 9 ...

I have already said that the seventh chapter contains the history of one over whom sin has dominion. Now to suppose that this was the experience of Paul when he wrote the epistle, or of any one who was in the liberty of the gospel, is absurd and contrary to the experience of every person who ever enjoyed gospel liberty. And further, this is as expressly contradicted in the sixth chapter as it can be. As I said, the seventh chapter exhibits one over whom sin has dominion; but God says, in the sixth chapter and fourteenth verse, "For sin shall not have dominion over you, for ye are not under the law, but under grace."

 

 


THE OBERLIN EVANGELIST 1841 paragraph 273 237 Lecture XXIX. The True Service of God ...

(2.) Another fact to show this, is that the spirit of the converts of such revivals is often manifestly a mere legal spirit. As a matter of fact they are not brought into the glorious liberty of the children of God. But instead of Gospel liberty, they are brought into legal bondage. By a little conversation with them, it appears, almost at first blush, that their religion is not love, that it is not mellow, holy, heavenly, meek, humble, broken-hearted, but is on the other hand hard-hearted, selfish, constrained, severe, unkind, sectarian and censorious.

 

 


THE OBERLIN EVANGELIST 1841 paragraph 285 237 Lecture XXIX. The True Service of God ...

The grand reason why ministers promote a legal religion is, that they are themselves legalists.--They preach as far as they know, and having only the baptism of John, they have need that some one should expound unto them the way of God more perfectly. They testify what they have seen and experienced, and this, they consider to be true religion. They inculcate it upon others; being themselves in bondage, they beget children in their own likeness. They are born and continue slaves.--Nothing is more alarming to them than the idea of getting above their sins. They would even manifest indignation at the profession of sanctification on the part of any soul. They would think that surely he knows little or nothing of the evils of a wicked heart, and would look upon him as in a most deluded and self-righteous state. Why, they have never so much as conceived of gospel liberty. A religion of love, joy, peace, long-suffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, temperance, meekness, and all the graces of the Holy Spirit, what do they know of these? "Being rooted and grounded in love, and comprehending with all saints, what is the length, and breadth, and height, and depth, of that love of God, that passeth knowledge." O, what do they know of this? Alas, the poor slaves! No, reader, they regard the doctrine of entire sanctification in this life as a most dangerous heresy; it is so infinitely at variance with their own experience, and with all that they call and really suppose to be religion, that they look upon such a sentiment, as ridiculous, and dangerous. I say then, we must have a class of ministers, the state of the Church and of the world imperiously demand it, that know what gospel liberty is. Look at Wesley and his coadjutors, at Luther and his coadjutors. Read their writings; look into Luther's Commentary, on the Epistle to the Galatians. Read the history of the life and times of those holy men.--Witness the effect of their labors. And what is the secret of all their success. The fact that they walked with God, that they were in the liberty of the gospel, that they distinguished clearly between a legal and a gospel religion, that they distinguished between the righteousness which is by faith and the righteousness of the law. In short, they pressed upon their hearers, the great idea, that God is love, that religion is love, not emotions or complacency, but benevolence, and this succeeded under God in kindling up among mankind the very fire that lives in the heart of God.

 

 


THE OBERLIN EVANGELIST 1842 paragraph 376 371 Lecture VI. Wisdom Justified of Her Children ...

1. That the dress, and manner of life of John the Baptist were manifestly typical of the state of repentance and humiliation to which he called the Jews at that particular time, and to which every soul is called before he received Christ, gospel liberty, and joy in the Holy Ghost. It had been common for the prophets of Israel, to adopt modes of life that were typical of the particular truths they were commissioned to announce.

 

 


THE OBERLIN EVANGELIST 1842 paragraph 379 371 Lecture VI. Wisdom Justified of Her Children ...

4. Christ's preaching and manner of life were no less a stumbling block. Knowing nothing of gospel liberty, and not understanding that all things belong to God's children, and were to be wisely and temperately used by them with thanksgiving, they accused Christ of being a glutton and a wine-bibber. John's preaching and manner of life were designedly legal, in the sense that they were designed to make the Jews feel that they were in a state of condemnation, instead of being in a state of justification by faith in Jesus Christ. Christ's manner of life was a perfect specimen of gospel liberty, in opposition to the legal and conscience bound state in which the Scribes and Pharisees were, which was typified by John's habits and manner of life.

 

 


THE OBERLIN EVANGELIST 1842 paragraph 395 371 Lecture VI. Wisdom Justified of Her Children ...

6. One class of selfish minds are legalists. Having been convicted of sin, their selfishness takes on that peculiar type. They are, perhaps, remarkably strict in the outward observance of the Sabbath, and the ordinances of God's house. They seem to be always dissatisfied with themselves, and with every body else--vexed and harassed with the consideration that they do not meet the demands of their own conscience. They are always confessing their heart sins, but never forsaking them. Having no faith in Christ, they know nothing of gospel liberty. Not knowing what it is to eat and drink for the glory of God, their table becomes a snare and a trap, and a stumbling-block to them, They are uncomfortable themselves, and render those around them so. Cheerfulness looks shocking to them, and appears altogether like unbecoming levity. Encouraging any of the arts, appears to them like conformity to the world, and even the temperate enjoyment of such things as are requisite to health, comfort, and usefulness, appears to them inconsistent with benevolence. They do not seem to know that all these things are parts of benevolence, but look upon them as a spirit of self-gratification, just as a man who knows nothing in his own experience, of eating from any other motives than self-gratification, would not, of course, understand how others could do the same things only as they were influenced by the same motives.

 

 


THE OBERLIN EVANGELIST 1843 paragraph 19 TABLE OF CONTENTS ... HOLINESS OF CHRISTIANS IN THE PRESENT LIFE ...

Lecture XIII. Gospel Liberty
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THE OBERLIN EVANGELIST 1843 paragraph 668 668 Lecture XIII. Gospel Liberty ...

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THE OBERLIN EVANGELIST 1843 paragraph 669 668 Lecture XIII. Gospel Liberty ...

HOLINESS OF CHRISTIANS IN THE PRESENT LIFE --No. 13
Gospel Liberty
Lecture XIII
August 16, 1843

 

 


THE OBERLIN EVANGELIST 1843 paragraph 708 668 Lecture XIII. Gospel Liberty ...

2. But the only remedy is faith in Christ, and application to his blood. "This is the work of God, that ye believe on Him whom He hath sent." Cast the whole soul upon Him, to receive the spirit of obedience. I have often seen persons striving and pushing for months, but all to no purpose. They were not one whit better, and it was not till they saw that it would not make them better if they should continue thus a thousand years, and until they cast themselves wholly on Christ, to receive the spirit of obedience from Him, that they entered into gospel liberty. "Come unto me all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me, for I am meek and lowly in heart; and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light."

REMARKS.

 

 


THE OBERLIN EVANGELIST 1843 paragraph 713 668 Lecture XIII. Gospel Liberty ...

5. Multitudes have no true idea of gospel liberty. They have made a credible profession of religion, and are toiling out its duties, but what liberty means they know not--and perhaps they are even ministers of the gospel! Of course, such persons don't expect liberty. I recently heard of a revival, in which the minister said to inquirers, "don't expect to be happy in this world; I never was, nor do I expect to be until I get to heaven. I don't know what it is to have enjoyment in religion." Now there is a fundamental error in such instruction. Not happy! Had I been present where such instruction was given, I would have told that minister that he was not a converted man if that was his experience. It is thus that a legal religion is inculcated on converts, by legal ministers and legal professors. But how many persons are just here--afraid to find any other way, for fear it will lead to delusion! O, that it might be seen that a religion which does not produce present peace and blessedness, is not, of course, a religion of love, and is therefore false.

 

 


THE OBERLIN EVANGELIST 1854 paragraph 257 232 Lecture VI. Variety in the Service Offered to God ...

This class of persons, as I have said, do not serve God from fear, but from hope. They go into it as a good and a paying business. They do not toil hard, for they don't suppose it necessary, and their toil does not come hard to them, because they expect a handsome reward for it. They work cheerfully as those who are driving a good business. Their religion is not a yoke of bondage. They call it "gospel liberty." They will be all the more earnest and zealous, by how much the stronger are their hope and expectation of eternal life. They are laying up treasure in heaven, why should they not be cheerful and hopeful? They make reward their end; mistake presumption for faith; the love of gain for the love of God. It does not lie before their minds as the love of gain, yet it is so, none the less truly.

 

 


THE OBERLIN EVANGELIST 1854 paragraph 285 272 Lecture VII. License, Bondage and Liberty ...

In swift obedience move--"

and this obedience is the highest freedom and the purest blessedness. When the heart is right it asks nothing wrong, and men have only to go according to their heart; or more strictly, they have only to follow the Lord, and to this the heart makes no resistance but yields with the utmost delight.


2. But those whose hearts are yet in sin, yet who do a bond-service--for God as they suppose, but really for self; they would fain lessen their religious services if they might. They would stay away from religious meetings if it would do. They lust for the fleshpots of Egypt, and would return thither if they dared. They are in bondage to their consciences. For the sake of peace with conscience, they conform to its dictates in part, in the way of compromise, pleading to be let off as much as possible, and making the best turns they can, as men are wont to do with a hard master.

Again, this class are in bondage to God, serving Him, so far as they render Him any service, in the spirit of slaves, not of sons. They think they must be religious, or do worse, and they are afraid of the worse alternative. They would do many things which God forbids, but they dare not. Hence they submit, yet the heart yields only the form of service.


3. They are in bondage to the church. They are afraid of censure. To have Christians watch over them is about equivalent to having spies environing their path. So far from rejoicing to have the kind and watchful eye of brethren and sisters on them, they feel this to be an unwelcome restraint.

Now, beloved, how does this test apply to your heart?


4. This class abound in resolutions. These constitute their principal Christian exercises. To make resolutions and to break them; to endeavor, yet to fail to perform; to resolve and resolve, yet go on as ever--this is their religious history. The reason is, they never break up the deep foundations of selfishness and let their souls settle down into the great depths of benevolence.
 
5. They are often greatly pressed with conviction, a deep sense of sin troubles them; conscience upbraids; they say, or omit to say many things for which they condemn themselves, and hence they feel exceedingly uneasy. If they are students they scarcely get a lesson. In fact they are simply convicted sinners, not converted saints.

Again, their knowledge of their own case controls the judgment they form of others, and hence they judge others harshly. They cannot conceive how a Christian can smile without sin. They do not understand that buoyancy of spirit which is so congenial to the peaceful Christian. Always dissatisfied with themselves, how can they be satisfied with others? Always conscious of doing wrong, how can they, naturally, judge otherwise of their friends? Their own mind screwed up under a feeling of bondage and a sense of constraint, they give no credit for honest piety to those who walk peacefully and calmly in the light of the Savior's presence. Spontaneously forming harsh judgments, first of themselves, and next of others, they have no idea what a change would come over these judgments of others if once they were to come themselves into gospel liberty. Set these bond-servants to the work of Christian discipline; they almost never reclaim or reform the offender. It is quite beyond their power to love him down--for the love is not in them.

 

 


THE OBERLIN EVANGELIST 1854 paragraph 296 272 Lecture VII. License, Bondage and Liberty ...

4. Persons in bondage often seem to themselves to have a much deeper sense of sin than those who are in gospel liberty. They think so, but they are entirely mistaken. Those who are free in the gospel have altogether the keenest sense of sin. Yet the bones broken under the law are set and healed, and God has caused rejoicing where only pains were before. But if persons from this state were to fall into sin, you would see their conscience wake to a searching and a fearful retribution.

 

 


THE OBERLIN EVANGELIST 1854 paragraph 297 272 Lecture VII. License, Bondage and Liberty ...

5. Young men who have not associated with Christians who were in gospel liberty and acting under the impulses of love, will almost always have false conceptions of religion. Their idea of it will lack the amenities and the charities of the true gospel life. They do not see how anybody can be in such a state as not to lust after the flesh-pots of selfishness. They have no conception of that state in which the soul rises to a new class of aspirations and sympathies--in which it ascends far above the murky and foul atmosphere of earth, and bathes itself in the love and the light of heaven. They need to come into close communion with Christians who are in this state before they can properly appreciate the idea of religion.

 

 


THE OBERLIN EVANGELIST 1854 paragraph 301 272 Lecture VII. License, Bondage and Liberty ...

A far more wonderful transaction has taken place in another quarter; a far higher court has been in session; nay, the supreme Executive of the universe has come forth to act on this great emancipation, and has made out true papers for giving gospel liberty to a race of lost, enslaved sinners. Had you heard of this? The thing was done many years ago, but the business still lingers unfinished. In fact there have not been messengers enough to carry the glad news yet to every creature; and what is worse, very many to whom it has come cannot be persuaded to accept the boon. Hence much time has been lost and the work still lingers. And now what will you do with this proposal? It comes to you; what will you do with it? Do you say, "I am not a slave;" ah, but you are, and you know it! Do you say, "If I were only sure that I could get such a religion--one of true gospel liberty--I would have it"? Let me tell you, there is no other true religion, none. All other is counterfeit. You can have this if you will.

 

 


THE OBERLIN EVANGELIST 1854 paragraph 310 304 Lecture VIII. Living by Faith ...


I. Faith is not merely an intellectual state.


1. It is more than a mere conviction or state of being convinced. We do not reach the radical idea till we get to the heart, and till we find in this term, faith, the heart's confidence--a trusting in which the heart reposes on the word or character of one deemed worthy of confidence. It is a phenomenon of the will--it being of necessity a thing of free choice whether we will or will not refuse confidence, it being supposed that the intelligence sees good reason for such confidence.
 
2. In its generic signification it may be applied to any thing in which we repose confidence. Any exercise of mind in which we yield it up to confide and to trust is faith.
 
3. All intelligent beings live by faith in some thing. Little children live by faith, and it is striking to observe how much this is true of them. Indeed unreflecting persons do not by any means conceive how universal this principle is and must be, and how necessary to the existence of social and sentient beings. Even little children must learn to have faith in the use of their muscles, else they would not venture to trust themselves upon their feet at all. Nor would any sane man eat his daily food but for faith. He has faith in his cook that she has not poisoned it. He must have faith that this food will do him good and will not kill him. Without faith men would not dare lie down to sleep. They must have some confidence in their fellow beings that they will be permitted to sleep without being murdered. In fact men would not dare to do any thing which implies peaceful repose unless they lived by faith. Without faith, there could be no repose of mind--nothing but sleepless and intense solicitude. In this state no man could live. His very solicitudes would wear out his nerves and crush down his physical system.
 
4. All families must live by faith, or rather they could not live without it. Even a pirate ship could not be managed without it. An old adage says--"There is honor among thieves;" and obviously, if there were not, there could be no such thing as organized thievishness, or association in mischief of any sort. They who need the help or sympathies of others in their enterprise must of necessity live by faith.
 
5. It is astonishing to see how much faith there is in every thing. Look at men any where in any relations; you see them living by faith. If you, young people, had not faith, you would not be trying to get an education. Society could not get along in any form it may assume, without faith. Farmers would neither plant nor sow; nobody would bestow labor for the sake of future good results; nothing could be done,--without faith. If faith should utterly cease, the race must perish. You would be surprised, if you were to reflect, to see how soon the entire race must perish if faith were to cease. Faith is the great secret of their being--the underlying condition of their continued existence.
 
6. Without faith we overcome no obstacles, for we make no efforts. And who does not know that we never accomplish anything useful without effort? All useful things then must go undone, if it were not for faith. God has so constituted the universe that faith must be in exercise or its necessary processes must be arrested and ruin come down on all created beings.
 
7. On the other hand, in proportion as faith exists, society moves along admirably. An army, held together in strong and perfect discipline, owes its bond of strength to faith. A school well ordered, in diligence pursuing its noble work, lives by faith. A family, loving by promoting each others' interests, moving along with helpful labors and cares, have their central power in faith.
 
8. Of course I am speaking here only of faith in the generic, not the religious, sense. If confidence really exists, in all these multiform relations, then all goes right; all moves along smoothly. But if faith is lacking, every thing is wrong, necessarily and eternally so.
 
9. It is common for skeptics to sneer at Christianity because it makes so much account of faith. They seem to assume that they have no need of faith, in anything. It would be easy to show that of all men, religious skeptics must be most credulous and must have most faith, of some sort. The chief peculiarity in their case is, that having rejected the light and the evidence of truth through their radical enmity of heart against it, they are shut up to the necessity of believing things without evidence and against evidence as their only resort. They are compelled to believe that to "leap into the dark" at death is the best ending of human life.

But I must pass from this subject and proceed to inquire,

II. What is religious faith?


1. It differs from other faith in its objects, but not essentially in its nature. But I ought first to say that Christians have naturally faith like other men and women. They have the same faith in a general sense which is common to society and to human nature every where.
 
2. They have also more than this; they have a Christian faith, by which they live a Christian life. The secret of this Christian life is the faith they have in the Son of God. This faith "works by love." Their confidence in Christ, in all he says and does, weds their souls to him and begets unceasing love.
 
3. Their confidence in Christ's benevolence makes it a present reality to their souls, and hence the influence of such a presence of love cannot fail to inspire a corresponding love in their hearts towards Christ and his people, and indeed, towards all creatures. Thus they become conscious of both affectional and emotional love. Without confidence in God and in Christ, they could not live such a life of faith. The motive would be wanting. How could they have peace with God, except through faith in Christ's atonement as the ground of reconciliation? How could they walk in the strength of the Lord without faith in his exceedingly great and precious promises? How bring their hearts under the influence of all the great truths of the gospel, unless they have a religious faith in those truths?
 
4. Many Christians complain of the lack of emotion in their religious exercises, but overlook the great reason of their deficiency. They do not seem to see that the fountain out of which proceeds the strong, deep, flow of emotion, is no other than faith. See that daughter. She sits down to write to unbosom her soul. See how her faith in her mother's love opens the great fountain of her emotions. That mother's character is before her mind a present reality. She never can question the strength or the fulness of her mother's love. Hence when her attention turns to her mother, a thousand thoughts rush upon her mind, "and tears unbidden start."

Is it any wonder that a Christian's faith should in like manner inspire his affections and quicken his emotion?


5. By faith, the just live a life of obedience. Faith works by love, and love inspires the heart to obey. Faith brings the soul into such union and harmony with God that love and obedience become a second nature. Nothing can be more easy and natural than to obey where there is love and faith. If you confide in your Heavenly Father you will of course try to please him.

Again, by faith, you will love a life of submission to all God's providences. Adverse providences will of course cross your path in this earthly state; but if you confide in your Heavenly Father, you will pass smoothly along, submissive and satisfied that he who rules all does all things well. Said a man to me, only the other day--"I hold to this--that whatever occurs to me and mine will work for my good. If any loss befalls me, do I not know it shall be in some way for my gain? I know it must be. If one of my horses dies, it is all best. God will make it up in some spiritual good." Another man said to me--"If I set my heart upon accomplishing any object, make efforts for it, and succeed, it is well; and if I do not succeed, than it is well. I know the failure must be better than the success, else God would have given me the success. Do I not know that He will give me the best thing? It does not follow that He was displeased with me for making the efforts which He saw it best to frustrate. He expects me to act according to my best light and judgment; then if He sees a still better way and frustrates my way, all is well." Now I ask you, how could these men feel this repose and this submission to God's providence without faith?


6. So a man learns to adjust himself to the providence of God, as a ship at sea on the tops of the bounding waves. If anything comes dashing across his path and blasting his plans, gradually by his faith in God he adjusts himself to the blast and sings, "all is well, for it is my Father!" He trains himself from his first conversion to this self-adjustment by faith, even as the infant on his new and untrained limbs, learns to balance himself on the center of gravity, gaining new skill by each day's practice, until you are surprised to see what evolutions he can make with the utmost apparent ease and safety. So in the Christian's life; the trustful Christian learns to adjust himself suddenly to the blasts that strike him under the vicissitudes of God's providence, and keep his mind upright and on its balance, however sudden may be the changes which pass over him. He learns to apply every where those great truths he has learned of God. He holds practically that all God does is best. Hence he can pass through trials with calm and heavenly resignation. He expects to come out at last as Jacob did. You recollect Jacob began with saying--"Joseph is dead, and Simeon is dead; and ye will take Benjamin away also; all these things are against me." Did man ever make a greater mistake? Joseph was not dead, but was sent onward to the granary of the world to provide means of subsistence not for Jacob's family only, but for the whole nations. Simeon was not dead. All these things were not against him but for him, in the highest sense; and the good old man lived to see how sadly he had misinterpreted the ways of God towards himself and his house. So the fierce blast smites many a soul, and the poor man, weak in faith, staggers under the blow and trembles through great fear; but soon he gathers up his confidence, and lifting his head above the surging billows, he cries out, "All is well!" What though the lightnings flash and the thunders roar; what though darkness and storm combine their terrors; why shall he tremble? Is not God on the throne, high above and over all?

So the Christian lives exempt from care, bearing his burdens without distraction because he rolls them over upon the Lord. In the midst of business ever so complicated, his mind rests sweetly in the Lord--his faith causing his soul to have rest.


7. He has peace in God because he is justified by faith. His own soul has internal peace, because through faith he is sanctified. How could he have peace in either of these respects if he did not embrace Jesus Christ and his revealed plan of atonement by his blood and of cleansing by his Spirit?
 
8. In like manner by faith men live a joyous life, and a useful life. Faith lays the foundation for both the silent influence of a good example and for the active influence of direct efforts. You can look for neither without a living faith.
 
9. By faith men live a humble life. By faith they learn to take a low place. Indeed the very idea of faith involves humility; just as the idea of doing all yourself and trusting to no one for help, implies self-sufficiency and independence. The Christian is emptied of self-reliance ere he can be filled of Christ. He sees he has nothing to be proud of; that humility becomes him; and that his spirit must accept this low position ere he can receive all fulness of grace from his Lord.
 
10. By faith he lives a cheerful life. Generally the tenor of the life of faith is cheerful. Satisfied with God and his providence, why should he not be cheerful? He has occasion to rejoice evermore. God will bring out such glorious results, and his faith so distinctly anticipates them; he cannot but know that the church is safe, and that all he loves on earth is safe.
 
11. By faith he lives a self-denying life. If he has faith he will not make much of the little petty comforts of this life. His soul is upon far greater and better things. Why should he care for these little things when souls are to be saved or lost? He can afford to deny himself of almost every earthly comfort in order to save a soul, or to please his Lord and Master. When he encounters labor and toil, glad to go to the very ends of the earth on the gospel mission, he knows he has nothing to fear and no reason to anticipate loss to himself. It is true he does not go for the sake of personal gain; but he goes, deeply conscious that he is pursuing the most truly valuable objects and pursuing them because they are most truly valuable. As for his own reward, he knows he finds it in large measures in his work itself, and as for the future, he cheerfully leaves it with God. Without faith, such a life would be hard indeed; but with faith, why should he fear poverty, or persecution or shame? All is right--all is well enough. Who cannot afford to submit to all this, so long as his soul reposes in faith on his God?
 
12. By faith he lives a spiritual life, and not a merely natural one. His life is spiritual, not in the abused and perverted sense in which modern necromancers use the word, but in the sense of being in real communion with the Father and with the Son and with the Holy Ghost. The Spirit of God dwells in his heart by faith.
 
13. By faith he lives a prayerful life. It is natural for him to pray. He loves prayer, and breathes it even as he breathes the atmosphere. He has confidence in God and expects blessings in answer to prayer. Such a man has reasons enough for much prayer.
 
14. His life of faith is hopeful. He is not easily discouraged, for his confidence rests in the mighty God. He expects to succeed in doing all that God would have him do; and why should he wish to do more? Is he a minister of the Gospel, going forth to preach? He goes hopeful. Why should he not? He expects success in the name of the Lord if he has faith.
 
15. He will by faith lead an active life. Faith will spur on his activities. Under an earnest faith in divine truth, how can he help being active and zealous? If he believes God's word, he will believe in the fearful peril of sinners, and in the awful doom that awaits them. How can he desist and abstain from labor for souls so long as he sees them stand on slippery places, with fiery billows rolling below? Will he not devote himself with untiring diligence to pluck whomsoever he can from the ruin of a lost sinner?
 
16. Faith secures sympathy with God. Confidence in any man ensures your sympathy with him. So if you have confidence in God, you will give him the warm and earnest sympathies of your heart. Unbelief locks up the heart against sympathy with God; but faith opens it wide. It is wonderful to see how true faith in God opens the gate ways of the soul and lets in the waters of spiritual life and power.
 
17. Faith makes the Christian's life humane. It trains him to look on all as God's children and to love them and care for them as such. Seeing how much pity and forbearance God has towards his sinning creatures, he is drawn by his faith to exercise the same.
 
18. By faith he lives a life of Gospel liberty. He is not in bondage to law or to fear. He does not pray because he is obliged to, but because he trusts and loves. All right mental exercises are spontaneous, God by his Spirit writing his own law on the heart. It would be easy to show that a life of faith secures all these results.

These results constitute real life. Hence we see how eminently and how universally it must be true that the just shall live by faith.

REMARKS.

 

 


THE OBERLIN EVANGELIST 1861 paragraph 145 82 Lecture II. Christ Our Advocate ...

Do not stop short of this; for if your peace is truly made with God, if you are in fact forgiven, the sting of remorse is gone; there is no longer any chafing or any irritation between your spirit and the Spirit of God; the sense of condemnation and remorse has given place to the spirit of gospel liberty, peace, and love.

 

 


SYSTEMATIC THEOLOGY (1851), LECTURE 61 - Sanctification (Part 5) paragraph 52 Paul entirely sanctified

     To me it does not appear as if Paul speaks of his own experience in the seventh chapter of Romans, but that he merely supposes a case by way of illustration, and speaks in the first person, and in the present tense, simply because it was convenient and suitable to his purpose. His object manifestly was, in this and in the beginning of the eighth chapter, to contrast the influence of the law and of the gospel--to describe in the seventh chapter the state of a man who was living in sin, and every day condemned by the law, convicted and constantly struggling with his own corruptions, but continually overcome,--and in the eighth chapter to exhibit a person in the enjoyment of gospel liberty, where the righteousness of the law was fulfilled in the heart by the grace of Christ. The seventh chapter may well apply either to a person in a backslidden state, or to a convicted person who had never been converted. The eighth chapter can clearly be applicable to none but to those who are in a state of entire sanctification.

 

 


SYSTEMATIC THEOLOGY (1851), LECTURE 61 - Sanctification (Part 5) paragraph 53 Paul entirely sanctified

     I have already said, that the seventh chapter contains the history of one over whom sin has dominion. Now, to suppose that this was the experience of Paul when he wrote the epistle, or of any one who was in the liberty of the gospel, is absurd, and contrary to the experience of every person who ever enjoyed gospel liberty. And further, this is as expressly contradicted in the sixth chapter as it can be. As I said, the seventh chapter exhibits one over whom sin has dominion; but God says, in the sixth chapter and fourteenth verse, "For sin shall not have dominion over you: for ye are not under the law, but under grace." I remark finally upon this passage, that if Paul was speaking of himself in the seventh chapter of Romans, and really giving a history of his own experience, it proves nothing at all in regard to his subsequent sanctification; for--

 

 


GOSPEL THEMES, SERMON 17 - Christ Our Advocate paragraph 85

Do not stop short of this; for if your peace is truly made with God -- if you are in fact forgiven -- the sting of remorse is gone; there is no longer any chafing or any irritation between your spirit and the Spirit of God; the sense of condemnation and remorse has given place to the spirit of Gospel liberty, peace, and love.