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2 Thes.2.10.- Because they received not the love
of the truth, that they might be saved. V.11. For this cause God shall send them strong
delusions, that they should believe a lie. V:12. That they all might be damned who belie
ved not the truth, but had pleasure in anrighté
owszelle. Rev.2.14. i have a few things against thee, be
cause thou hast them that holdihe Doctrine of Balaam, whetanght Balak to cast a stumbling block before the children of Israel, to eat things sacrificed to Idols, and to commit fornication. V.15. So haft thou also them that hold the Dou
ctrine of the Nicolaitans, which thing I hate. V.20. I have a few things againft thee, because
thou suffereft that woman Fezebel, which calletb her self a Prophetesse, to teach and to seduce my servants to commit fornication, and to eat things
facrificed unto Idols. 2 Pet. 3.17. Te therefore beloved, seeing ye know
these things before, beware left je also being led away with the errour of the wicked, fall from
your oma stedfastneffe. V.18. But grow in Grace and in the knowledge
of our Lord and Saviour Fesus Chrift. Jude v.24. Now unto him that is able to keep you
from falling and to present you faultleß before the presence of his Glory with exceeding joy. V.25. To the only wise God our Saviour be Glory
and Majesty, Dominion and Power, now and Guer. Amen.
I have now dispatched the second Particular, The things thou art to watch againft. I comenow to the chird, the thing thou muft waçch for.
Thirdly, Watch tor, and take all fit opportunities to glorifie God, and to do good. This is to be like our blessed Lord and Saviour, who went about doing good, and made every place (where he came) che bercer for him. How much good may a feasonable word dropt for God, do ?? A sin wisely reproved, and discountenanced ; a good hint well improved, some good counsel seaIonably given, of how much advantage to the soples of others may these things proye? This is to be on Gods fide, and true to his party. We say, A wise man makes more opportunities than he finds, but a fool neglectetb those he has : It should be our real design in all companies, either to do goud, or to receive good; And this will curo to a comfortable account in che day of recompences.
I come now to che Motives, to quicken thee to this great and necessary duty of continuall watchfulnesse.
First, Consider how naturally we are all prone to be secure and carelesse; and want of watchfulnefle betraies us to most of the fins, we fall inro.
Secondly, Consider the vigilancy of the tempter. Shall he be so warchful to deftroy us, and
shall not we be watchful to keep our selves from his malice:
1 Pet.5.8. Be føber, be vigilant, because your add
versary, the devil, as a roaring. lion, walketh
about, seeking whom he may devour. Eph.6.11. Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able toftand against the wiles of the devil
. Thirdly, Consider the necessity of perfeverance, whereunto, a concurrence of our care, and diligence is required.
Whoso endureth to the end, saich our Saviour, Match.10,22. he and he only shall be saved. Let HS. all run with patience, faies the Apostle, the race that is set before us,Heb.12.1. Now in worldly races none gaioech the prize, but he that geccech first co the goal; buc in the spiritual race, not only he that cometh firf, but whoso holdech out to the last, he is sure to win and obtain the prize, Be faithful to the death, and I will give thee the Crown of life, saies our Saviour, Rev.2.10. '[is to no purpose therefore for a man to do well for a purt and then to give over,& break off chat good course he was encred inco; for 'cis perseverance in well doing, that carriech away the Crowa, 'Tis true, Gods called and fanctified people are preserved and kept in their state of Grace and Holi. neß by the power of God; by their close union with Fesus Chrift; by vertue of his merits and constant
interceffion for them; and alfo by a continued influence from the Spirit, maintaining the essence; life and feed of Grace in them; fo that they shall neither totally nor finally fall away. Yet observe these four things. 1. Seeming Grace may be lost; Take from him that which he hath, Mat.25.28. In Lake'cis, Take from him, that which he seemabte have, Chap.8.v.18. Blazing Comets, and Metcors are soon spent, and fall from Heaven, while true Stars keep their orbe and Station: 2: The common work of the Spirit may fail: Such as is spoken of Heb.6.4,5. viz, Humination, external reformation, ternporary Faith, a slight saft of the comforts of the Gospel, a weak glance upon the Glory of Heaven, which may poffibly stir up such a wish as was in Balaam, o that I might die the death of the righteous ; Nay further, there snay be a partaking of the gifts of the Holy Ghost, i é of abilities for holy ducies, (though not of bis renewing Graces) And yet such plenty of bloffoins as here are, may comtimes be wichout fruit. 3. True Grace may suffer a shrewd decay; the leaves may fail, though there may remain some life in the root: We read in Scripture of a decay both of Faith, Love, and obedience. Some lefc their first Faith, 1 Tim.5.12. Others left their first' Love, Rev.2.4. And as for obedience, we read of the first waies of David, as distinguished from his latter, 2 Chron. 27.3. because David in his lacter cime fell into
fcandalous firs. In temptations, Gods children may be sorely shaken: Their heel may be bruised as Christs was, though their head be noc crushed. The operations of Grace may be obfructed for a cime, and yet a seed remain, as in the case of David. 4. True Grace, if left to us, would soon be lost. Adam (hewed a sad exam-'. ple of this in innocency: But the best is, our security lies in Gods power and promises, and our wnion with Christ (as was said before) not ia our own strength. Christ hach a charge co kecp the Saints safe, and to conduct them fafc co everlasting Glory, Fohn 10.28. I give unto them eternal life, and they shall never perish, &c. V.29. My Father which gave them me is greater than all, and no man is able to pluck them out of my Fathers hand; I and my Father are one. God and Christ are engaged in the keeping of them. But observe it ; Those whom God causes to persevere, he makes to persevere in the wse of meanes, as ’cwas in their case. Ails 27.31. Al sball come to land; but except ye abide in the ship, ye cannot be safe. No believer is so sure of his continuance in a face of Grace, as thac he needech not be very wary, and watchful, and jealous over himself, 1 Cor.10.12, Let him that flandeth, take heed left he fal. There is a fear of caution, as well as a fear of diffidence and distrujt, 'cis good to weaken and abace che security of our flesh, though not our confidence in Christ. Our