Burgess - Houston-Packer Collection BT715 .B85 1652

S a e T. III. Falte Signs of Grace. 135 SERMONXXIVe, e ani felting that the greateft Sufferings for Chrqt are not infallible Evidences ofCfrace_>, 1 C Ox. 13. 3. eündaltbough Tgive my body to be burned, andhavenot Charity, itproteth menothing. He Apoftle hisfcope in the former part ofthis Chapter is to commend the gracesof Gods Spirit above the giftsof the fame. Hence he makes fuppo- litionsof the molt excellent perfeetions, which ifwithout Charity, are bus as a tinkling cymbal that may pleafe the ear of others but-it felt is worn out and deftroyed thereby. And bycharity hemeans that unfeigned love ofGod, Charity,what? and the good of others, whereby all our gifts are improved for thisend, and not forour felves. His firft inftance is diverfig and variety oftongues, a gift inthePrimitive times, thatmade the enjoyers thereofadmirable. A fecond is of Prophecie and underftandingof all Myfteries, all Knowledge, and All faith, all Faith. This placecloth not prove juftifying Faith to be fepárable from Cha- rity. But either it is a conditional, hyperbolical fpeech, like that Galr. If an Angelfoss Heaven, &c. as not onely force later Divines, but eventhe Ancients . have thought : or elle it may very well, be reftrained to miraculousFaith, in this fenfe, If l had all miraculous faith, fo thatI were able to work thegreateft mira c!e. And thus it is plain, fuch a faithmay be fevered fromtrue love. The Apoftle havingthus initanced in Gifts, befurther proceeds to give two 41111. glorious inflances of the external works of grace, which are molt admirable amongfl men, whereby he would teach us, That themollfpecrous and glorious external alts of grace, if teeming onely, are nothing, if grace it felfdoch not in- wardly animate them ; fo that inward grace in refpell of thofe external allions, is like the fool to the body, like art to the inftruments of Mufick, without which anuncertain found is made. - Theft glorious.externalsthe Apoltle fpecifieth are of two forts t a. Awork ofextraordinary mercy, IfIbeftowall my goods to feedthe poor. The Greek word 4. e fignifieth todivide villuals infeveral pieces, and fo to diftri- bute it. Now this is very terrible to confider, that a man may do all the exter- nal works of mercy, even the higheftand molt tranfcendent, yet not have true love. The fecond inf ance is ofremarkable fortitudeandglorious courage for Chrift and his truth, which is exprelfed in the dehgnation of that altion , wherein my courage maymanifeft it fell, ifIgivemy body tobe burnt. Where fume obferve this aggravation, Though a man benot firmmoned by others, and condemned to death, but although he willingly and ultroneoufly offerhimfelf, and then not to be whipped/ orimprifoned, but to die, and that. the molt terrible kinde of death, evenburning, yet if all this be without true love to God; his 'glory, Church and truth, ifsv,laerï< , All this will profit me nothing. in which fenfe