Baxter - BX5207 B3 A2 1696

The LIFE ofthe Li . I. a&ual Love and Obedience to God, as tocommit thisparticular Aet ofSin,and re- mit or omit that A&ofLove. 6. And this it is poffrble for a Juftified Perfon to do upon fome deliberation : For as Grace mayftrive one i iftant only in one A&, and then be fùddenly over- come ; fo_ it may ftrive longer, and keep the Mind on Confideratons of re- ¡training Motives, and yet be overcome. 7. For it is not the meer Length of Confideration which is enough to excite the Heart againft Sin, but there mutt be ekantefi of Light , and /km/m;(7 in thole Confederations : And fometimes a fudden Conviétion is fo clear , and great, and fenlible, that in an infant it ftirreth up the Soul to ars utter abhorrence of the Temptation, when the fame Man at another time may have all the fame thoughts, in fo tleepy a degree as null not prevail. Andfometimes theweaknefs of Grace as much appeareth bymaking no refiftanceatall, by caufing deliberation ( even in Sins of Patlionand Surprize) as at other times it doth, by yielding after dull deli- berations.. 8. And thougha littleSin mutt be bated, and univerfal Obedience mull prove our Sincerity, and noone Sin mutt be wilfully continued in ; yet it is certain that God's Servants do not oft commit Sins materially great and heinous (asFornication, Drunkennefs, Perjury, Opprellion, Deceit, &C.) and yet that they often commit fome left Sins, ( as idle thoughts, and idle words, and dulnefs in holy Duties, de- fe&ivenefs in the Love of God, and omiffion of holy Thoughts and Words, &r.) And that theTempter oft getteth advantageeven with them, by telling them that the Bin is/mall, and fuch as God's Servantsordinarily commit ; and that naturally we fly with greater fear from a great danger than from a lefs ; from a wound at the heart than a cut finger ! And therefore one reafòn why idle word, andfsnfulthoughts areeven deliberately oftner committed than molt heinous Sins, is becaufe the Soul is not awakedfo much byfear and care to make relftance : And Love needeth the help of fear in this our weakcondition. q. And it is certainthat ufufally the Servants of God, being men of 'molt know- ledge, do thereforefinagainft more knowledge chan others do ; for there are but few Sins, which they know not to be Sins : They know that idle Thoughts and Words, and the omiflions of thecontrary, are their fins. ro. Thereare fume Sins of fuch difficulty to avoid, (as thediforder or omiflîon of holy Thoughts, and the defe&s of Love to God, ôc'c.) and Rune Temptations fò prong, and theSoul in fo fluggifh a cafe toraft, that goodThoughts which are in deliberationufed againft them, are borne down at latt , and are lets effe- &ual. t x. And our prefent ftock of Habitual Grace is never Efficient of it felt, with- out Co-operating Grace fromChrift : And therefore, when we provoke him to withhold his help, no wonder if we fhew our weaknefs, fo far as to (tumble in the way to Heaven, or to ftep out into forne by-path, or break over the hedge, and fometimes to look back, and yet never to turn back, and go again from God to the World. ea. And becaufeno fall of a Saint, whichis Venial, an l fhmity, confiftent with Grace, doth either deftroy the habit of Love and Grace , of fet up a contraryha- bit above it, nor yet pervert the feope and bent of the Converfation, but only pre- vaileth to a particular A&, it therefore followeth, that the Soul rifeth up from fuch a Sin by true Repentance, and that he new Nature or Habit of 'Love within us, will work out the Sin as foon as it bath advantage : As the Needle in the Com- pafs will return to its proper Point, when the force that moved it doth ceafe ; and as a running Stream will turn clear again, when the force that muddied it is pall. And this Repentance will do much to increafe our ,hatred of the Sin , and fortifie us againft the next Temptation : fo that though there beforne Sins, which through our great Infirmity we daily commit, as we daily repent of them (as difordered Thoughts, defe&s. of Love, negle& of God, &ç.) yet it will not he lb with thole Sins which a willing, fincere, habituated Penitent bath more in his power to raft out. 13. Andyet when all is done, Sinwill breed fears, ( and the more , by how much the moredeliberate andwilful it is :) And the heft wayto keep under Doubts, and Terrours, and to keep up Comfort, is to keep up ÄEtua! Obedience, and quick- ly andpenitently return when we have finned. This much.I thought meet to fay for the fake of others wha may fill into the fame Temptations andPerplexities. f 7. The