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cancel his debt already contracted, but also to be a set-off against debts which he may afterwards contract.
11. Justification by the imputed righteousness of Christ, through faith, is in consequence of the soul's union to Christ. What he has done and suffered for his people becomes actually and legally theirs, in virtue of their being one with him
12. Faith, justifies because it receives Christ and his righteousness; but a dead faith will justify no one. Our faith and profession must be justified by our works, as Abraham justified his faith and piety by offering up his son at the command of God.
13. Justifying faith is the result of divine illumination. It is the gift of God, and the work of the Holy Spirit, and shows its genuineness by the works which follow it.
14. A justified state is never lost. When a man is justified he is confirmed in a state of grace, and will never fall into condemnation; but the justified person continues to be in a justified state because his union to Christ is indissoluble.
They are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation."
15. Justified persons have the privilege of enjoying peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.
16. When the Apostle James says, that a man is not justified by faith alone, he means a faith without works—an empty profession of faith—"a dead faith.”
When he says, that Abraham was justified by works, he means by a faith producing good works, and not by an unfruitful faith ; or by justification he means the clear manifestation of his true character; showing his faith by his works.
17. Though all believers are equally justified, it is not a necessary consequence, that they will all enjoy an equal reward. While all have a title to the heavenly inheritance ; those who shall appear at the day of judgment to have most good works will have bestowed upon them a greater reward ; for they shall be rewarded according to their works.
18. Justification and sanctification though perfectly distinct, the one being a change of our legal relations and responsibilities; the other of our inherent character ; yet are they never separated. The person who is justified, always has a commencement of the work of sanctification; and faith is a necessary instrument of both. A justifying faith is always a sanctifying faith.
19. Believers may go forward with confidence to judgment, because their sins are forgiven, and the robe of Christ's righteousness will cover all their shame, and render them
glorious in the eyes of the whole universe and acceptable to he Judge.
20. Their poor works also will be mentioned to their honour; and will receive a reward surpassing all their hopes, and even all their conceptions. This will be a reward of pure grace. A reward which God bestows on them because of their union with Christ. As he is a King and Priest, so shall they be made “ kings and priests unto God.” As he has overcome, so also shall they: and as he has sat down with his Father on his throne, so shall they sit down with him on his throne. But all words, all ideas of mortals, are perfectly inadequate to this subject. • Behold what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us that we should be called the sons of God. Beloved, now are we the sons of God; and it doth not yet appear what we shall be, but when he doth appear we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is. And every man that hath this hope in Him, purifieth himself even as he is pure.”
Α Τ Ο Ν Ε Μ Ε Ν Τ.
REV. WILLIAM SYMINGTON.
PRESBYTERIAN BOARD OF PUBLICATION,
Entered, according to the Act of Congress, in the year 1837, by
ALEXANDER W. MITCHELL, M. D
Eastern District of Pennsylvania.
NATURE OF ATONEMENT.
How can man be justified with God? This is the most important, by far, of all the questions that can ever awaken numan inquiry. From the universal consciousness of guilt, it may be presumed, that every individual of our race, has, at one time or another, been forced to utter a similar interrogation. The very language in which it is expressed conveys the idea of difficulty; and one can scarce conceive of its being used without being accompanied, in the countenance of the inquirer, with at least a look of deep anxiety, if not an air of utter despondency. It is a question, too, on which the mind of man, unassisted by revelation, finds itself utterly undone. The light of reason, the lamp of philosophy, the torch of science, have been unable to shed a single ray of hope on this momentous subject; and, left to these, we should have been doomed to the blackness of darkness for ever.
Not that there have been no attempts to answer, without the aid of inspiration, the all-momentous question; but the answers have ever been such as were calculated to bewilder and deceive, rather than to quiet the apprehensions of an awakened conscience, or to impart true peace of soul. The utmost that schoolmen, or philosophers, or natural religionists, have been able to effect in this department, has tended only to apply palliatives to the wounded heart, or to administer stupifying opiates to the patient. “Forgers of lies, physicians of no value" were they all, leaving their patients, so soon as the temporary effect of their worthless expedients went off, as ready as ever to exclaim, in mental agony, Is there no balm in Gilead? Is there no physician there?
To the light of divine revelation alone does it belong to irradiate this moral gloom; to the wisdom of Jehovah was it reserved, to point out a sovereign remedy for the deep-rooted malady of human guilt. This he has done in his word, which contains full, multifarious, and satisfactory information on the most important of all human inquiries. All who believe the Scriptures, profess to regard the work of Christ as the only remedy for moral evil. They all agree in considering that he has conferred the greatest possible benefit on the