Watts - Houston-Packer Collection BX5207.W3 S4x 1805 v.2

62 TI-12 ,A.TRKEMI;NT ,OF CRRIST. ,CSI;RM. YXXiv: can merit soine favours at the hands of God, not only for themselves, but for their ,neighbours too. Strange doctrine indeed, made.up.of folly,, pride, and absurdity,! Our best services are so.,inuçh due to God, that if any man could practise complete ,righteousness, and fulfil the law of God constantly through all his life, it would not make amends for .one .past offence, nor merit any fa- vour of God for a.crir ìinal. creature. But, alas ! man is so far from being,able to fulfil per- fect righteousness for time.to :come, that in this .fallen state, he can do nothing that is truly good : He broke the lawof God in days past, and.he,goes on to break it daily and hourly. His understanding is grown so dark, his will so perverse, and his affectiöns.and appetites so cor- rupt and vicious, by his departure from God, that he cannot answer the present demands:of duty; much less canhe bring an offering of righteousness to atone for. past iniquities. "We are by nature dead in trespasses and sins." ,PROPOSITION V. Neither can this guilty, wretched creature man, make any satisfaction to- the broken law of God by his sufferings, any more than by his doings. For the pen,,altyof the law is tribulationand anguish of soul and body, the wrath of God and death : and how far this dreadful sentence reaches, what miseries are im- plied in, it, and: how long. the execution of it must conti- nue, who can tell ? This we know, that God himself, "who:sees the full evil, and complete desert or demerit of sin, bath, in some places of scripture, threatened eternal punishment to sinners. And if wemay venture to judge concerning the great- ness of the guilt, and demerit of our offences against God, -by the sanie rules, by which reason teaches us to judge ,of the guilt and demerit of-an offence against our fellow-creatures, we must say, the guilt of sin is infinite; and therefore the punishment due to a sinning creature is everlasting, because he cannot any other way sustain punishment equal to his infinite demerit of sin. Among men the crime is always aggravated .in proportion to- the person, against whom it is committed : Therefore any offence against a father, or a king, has much more guilt in it, and ismuch more severely, punished, than the same offe.ic,e committed against.an inferior, or an equal. An 2