Abernathy - Houston-Packer Collection BX9178.A33 S4 1748 v.4

!H. 44 Of Chritian Liberty. S E R M. hath a power of influencing the mora' V. fprings of anion, can have the leaft pre- tence to interpole his authority ; for thefe (elf evident reafons ; firft, becaufe the effence of religion confifting in certain internal prin. ciples and difpofitions of the heart, it is impoffible that any other being can ever know whether the heart adeth under the power of thefe principles and affeélions or not ; and, fecondly, becaufe fo far as the heart is influenced by the authority and compulfion of beings ignorant of its real fprings, fa far the only valuable purpofes of religion are defeated and deftroyed. It is no longer the fear or the love of God, thofe perma- nent principles, fitted to operate at all times, and in all fituations and circumfiances that influence the condua ; but the love or fear ®f men, or perhaps, fome bafer confidera- tion of cunning or deceit. True it is, that the greateft part of what was called religion in the world at the time of our Saviour's coming into it, derived its authority from men, but this altereth not the nature of the thing; on the contrary, our Saviour's con- dud, when matters were in this Rate, is the flrongeft confirmation which could pof'ibly be given by him, that religion, in order to be of any fignification, mutt have its feat in the heart, and derive its influence from an im-