Baxter - Houston-Packer Collection BX5200 .B352 1835 v1

LIFE, OF RICHARD BAXTER. 49 "7. And I saw that Christ did bring up all his serious and sin- cere disciples to real holiness and to heavenly mindedness, and made them new creatures, and set their hearts, and designs, and hopes, on another life, and brought their. senses into subjection to their reason, and taught them to resign themselves to God, and to love him above all the world. And it is not like that God will - make use of a deceiver for this real visible recovery and reforma- tion of the nature of man ; or that any thing but his own zeal can imprint his image. "8. And here I saw an admirable suitableness, in the office and design of Christ, to the ends of God, and the felicity of man ; and how excellently these supernatural revelations do fall m, and take their place, in subserviency to natural verities ; and how won- derfully faith is fitted to bring men to the love of God, when it is nothing else but the beholding of his amiable attractive love and goodness in the fade of Christ, and the promises of heaven, as in a glass, till we see his glory. "9. And I had felt much of the power of his word and spirit on myself, doing that which reason now tellethme must be done. And shall I question my physician when he hath done so much of the cure, and recovered my depraved soul to God? " 10. And as. I saw these assistances to my faith, so I perceived that whatever the tempter had to say against it,, was grounded on the advantages which he took frommy ignorance, and my distance from the times and places of the matters of the sacred history, and such likethings which everynovice meeteth with in almost all other sciences at the first, and which wise, well-studied men can see through. "All these assistances were at hand before I came to the imme- diate evidences of credibility in the .sacred oracles themselves. And when I set myself to search for those, I found more in the doctrine, the predictions, the miracles, than I ever before took no- tice of, which I shall not here so far digress as to set down, having partly done it in several treatises." "From this assault, I was forced to take notice that it is our belief of the truth of the word of God and the life to come, which is the spring that sets all grace on work, and with which itrises or falls, flourishes, or decays, is actuated or stands still; and that there is more of this secret unbelief at the root, than most of us are aware of; and that our love of the world, our boldness with sin, our neg- lect ofduty, are caused hence. I observed easily in myself that ifat any time Satan did, more than at other times, weaken my belief of Scripture and thé life to come, my zeal in religious duty abated with it, and I grew more indifferent in religion than before ; I was more inclined to conformity in those points which I had taken to VOL. I. 7