Reynolds - BX5133.R42 S4 1831

lí 74 SECOND SERMON covenant with sin, say to thy soul as Boaz said to his kinsman, " At what time thou buyest it, thou must have Ruth the Moabitess with it," Ruth iv. 4, 5. If thou wilt have the pleasures, the rewards, the wages of iniquity, thou must also have the curse and damna- tion that is entailed upon it ; and let thy soul answer, which he there Both, No I may not do it, I shall mar and spoil a better inheritance. 2. This may serve for an instruction unto us touching the duties of solemn humiliation and repent- ance, which is the scope of the prophet's direction in this place. We must not think we have done enough when we have made general acknowledgments and confessions of sin, and begged pardon and grace from God ; but we must withal further bind ourselves fast unto God by engagements of new obedience, as holy men in the scripture have done in their more solemn addresses unto God, Neh. ix. 38. Psa. li. 12 -15. for without amendment of life, prayers are but howl - ings and abominations, Hos. vii. 14. Prov. xxviii. 9. No obedience, no audience. A beast will roar when he is beaten ; but men when God punisheth should not only cry, but covenant. Unto the performance whereof, that we may the better apply ourselves, let us a little consider the nature of a religious covenant. A covenant is a mutual stipulation, or a giving and receiving of faith between two parties, whereby they do unanimously agree in one inviolable sentence or resolution. Such a covenant there is between God and true believers ; he giving himself as a reward unto them, and they giving themselves as servants unto him ; he willing and requiring the service, and they willing and con- senting to the reward ; he promising to be their God, and they to be his people, Heb. viii. 10. A notable