Reynolds - BX5133.R42 S4 1831

170 FOURTH SERMON thousands should be against us to hate us, yet none shall be against us to hurt us. 2. If God love us freely, we should love him thank- fully, 1 John iv. 19. and let love be the salt to sea- son all our sacrifices. For as no benefit is saving unto us which doth not proceed from love in him, so no duty is pleasing unto him which Both not proceed from love in us, 1 John v. 3. 3. Plead this free love and grace in prayer ; when we beg pardon, nothing is too great for love to for- give : when we beg grace and holiness, nothing is too good for love to grant. There is not any one thing which faith can manage unto more spiritual advan- tages, than the free grace and love of God in Christ. 4. Yet we must so magnify the love of God, as that we turn not free grace into wantonness. There is a corrupt generation of men, who under pretence of ex- alting grace, do put disgrace upon the law of God, by taking away the mandatory power thereof from those that are under grace, a doctrine most extremely con- trary to the nature of this love. For God's love to us, works love in us to him : and our love to him is this, that we keep his commandments ; and to keep a com- mandment is to confirm and to subject my conscience with willingness and delight unto the rule and per- ceptive power of that commandment. Take away the obligation of the law upon conscience as a rule of life, and you take awayfrom our love to God the very matter about which the obedience thereof should be conversant. It is no diminution to love that a man is bound to obe- dience, (nay it cannot be called obedience if I be not bound unto it,) but herein the excellency of our love to God is commended, that whereas other men are so bound by the law that they fret at it, and swell against, and would be glad to be exempted from it, they who love