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THE HOLY BIBLE.
SECTION 1. Shewing what Religion
God is to be worshipped, and what is, and how the knowledge of it is
those laws and ordinances are, which
be hath commanded us to observe. to be obtained.
And then, for our greater encourageUNDER the name of Religion is com- ment to serve God, in all such things prehended all that worship and service as we shall find to be enjoined us, and which is due from men to God: what- to persevere in our obedience to him ; ever we ought or are bound to do in it is requisite for us to know what obedience to him; whatever he will happiness God hath prepared for them reward us for doing, or punish us for who love and obey him, and what not doing.
misery he hath provided for such 'as In order, therefore, to worship and transgress his commandments. How serve God as we ought to do, we must great, how certain, and of what confirst believe that he is; that he hath tinuance, both the joy and the terror given us laws and commandments to of the Lord are. keep; that he is a rewarder of them who diligently seek him, and of such
Sect. II. The Necessity of Searching as do according to all that he hath
the Scriptures. commanded them : and that he taketh These are the things in which every vengeance on them that obey him not. man is concerned to be well instructed; And for the better understanding the and the truest and shortest way of nature and extent of our duty, in all attaining such knowledge as this, is, respects, together with the grounds by searching the Scriptures : and reasons of our obligations ; it For they are they which testify of behoves us in the next place to inform God; which shell us what is good, ourselves as truly and particularly as and what the Lord doth require of we can, who the Lord is whom we are us; which set before us the way of to serve ; what attributes and perfec- life, and the way of death; and which, tions belong to him, and what works teach us what we must do to be saved he hath wrought; as also, what manner from the wrath to come, and to inherit of beings we ourselves are, who are eternal life. commanded to serve him; what ca- The way of man is not now in himself: pacities and inclinations we have; it is not in man that walketh to direct his what state and condition we are in, steps. Though we can by nature do and in what relation we stand to God. many things contained in the law of
After which it will be necessary for God; and though we can in many us to inquire, how and in what manner cases, even of ourselves, judge what is right, our conscience bearing witness may hear, that they may learn and to what is good or evil, by excusing, fear the Lord your God, and observe or else accusing us accordingly; yet we to do all the words of this law : and are not a sufficient law unto ourselves. that their children, who have not Notwithstanding therefore the law known, may hear, and learn to fear written in our hearts, we shall never the Lord, &c.-Deut. xxxi. 11-13. come to the full knowledge of that xyii. 18—20. Josh. i. 3. good and acceptable and perfect will When Josiah heard it read, he rent of God, which is to direct us in this his clothes.—2 Kings xxii. 11. &c. life, but by his word, which he hath Ezra ix. 4. in due time manifested to us : from I have esteemed (hid, or laid up) whence we may be fully instructed in the words of his mouth, more than my all things which belong unto our peace, necessary food (or appointed portion). and salvation, even the salvation of our Job xxiii. 12. souls.
The word of the Lord is tried (or And if any man sin (as in many refined).-Ps. xviii. 30. xii. 6. things we offend all), there is no other The law of the Lord is perfect, way of being assured that we shall not converting the soul : the testimony all perish, but from the Scriptures ; of the Lord is sure, making wise the which acquaint us, that we have an simple : the statutes of the Lord are advocate with the Father; and give us right, rejoicing the heart : the coman account in what manner, and upon mandment of the Lord is pure, enwhat terms God is pleased to recon- lightening the eyes, &c. the judgcile us to himself.* *
ments of the Lord are true and righ
teous altogether : more to be desired Secr. 111. Of the Scriptures, the writ- the
than fine gold; sweeter also than ten word of God, the word of truth; honey, and the honey-comb. Moretheir authority, use, end, and excel- over, by them is thy servant warned, lency. Heb. i. l. xi. 3, 4. Prov. &c.-Ps. xix. 7-11. xciii. 5. cxix. xxiii. 23.
72. 105. 2 Sam. xxii. 31. What nation so great, that hath sta- Lo, I come: in the volume of the tutes and judgments so righteous as all book it is written of me.-Ps. xl. 7. this law which I set before you this He established a testimony in Jaday -Deut. iv. 8. Ps. cxix. 138. cob, and appointed a law in Israel, 172.
which he commanded our fathers that Therefore shall ye lay up these my. they should make them known to their words in your heart, and in your soul, children: that the generation to come and bind them for a sign upon your might know, the children who should hand, that they may be as frontlets be born, should arise and declare to between your eyes. And ye shall teach their children, that they might set them your children, speaking of them their hope in God, and not forget when thou sittest in thine house, and the works of God, but keep his comwhen thou walkest by the way; when mandments, and might not be as their thou liest down, and when thou risest fathers, &c.-Ps. lxxviii. 5-8. up. And thou shalt write them upon Because they rebelled against the the door-posts of thine house, and words of God, and contemned the upon thy gates, that your days may be counsel of the Most High; therefore multiplied, &c. Deut. xi. 18-21. he brought down their heart, &c.vi. 6-8.
Ps. cvii. 11, 12. Luke vii. 30. Thou shalt read the law before all Wherewithal shall a young man Israel in their hearing, &c. that they cleanse his way? by taking heed ac
cording to thy word. Thy word have * See Bishop Gastrell's Institutes. I hid in my heart, that I might not sin
against thee: thy word bath quick- the thing whereto I sent it.—Isa. lv. ened me, &c. Remember the word 10, 11. unto thy servant, upon which thou To this man will I look, to him who causedst me to hope. I will speak of is poor, &c. and trembleth at my thy testimonies before kings : Un- word, &c. Hear the word of the Lord, less thy law had been my delight I ve who treinble at his word, &c. he had perished in my affliction. Thou, shall, &c.- Isa. lxvi. 2. 5. through thy commandments, hast Behold, the word of the Lord is to made me wiser than mine enemies, them a reproach : they have no de&c. I have more understanding than light in it. Therefore I am full of all my teachers ; for thy testimonies the fury of the Lord, &c.-Jer. vi. are my meditation. I understand more 10, 11. than the ancients, &c. How sweet The wise men are ashamed, &c. are thy words to my taste! thy word Lo, they have rejected the word of the is a lamp to my feet, &c. I hope in Lord: and what wisdom is in them? thy word : the entrance of thy word ---Jer. viii. 9. Luke vii. 30. giveth light, it giveth understanding The prophet who hath a dream, to the simple.-Ps. cxix. 9. II. 46. let him tell a dream; and he who 49, 50. 92. 96. 98-100. 103. 105. hath my word let him speak my word 114. 130.
faithfully. What is the chaff to the Thou hast magnified thy word above wheat ? saith the Lord. Is not my all thy name. All the kings of the word like as a fire? saith the Lord; earth shall praise thee, O Lord; when and like a hammer, which breaketh they hear the words of thy mouth. the rock in pieces -Jer. xxiii. 28, 29. Ps. cxxxviii. 2. 4.
I will shew thee that which is He sheweth his word unto Jacob, noted in the Scripture of truth.--Dan. his statutes and his judgments unto X. 21. Israel : He hath not dealt so with any Because Ephraim hath made many ration: and as for his judgments, they altars, &c. I have written to him the have not known them.-Ps.cxlvii. 19, great things of my law : but they 20. Deut. iv. 8..
were counted as a strange thing.“ Whoso despiseth the word, shall be Hos. viii. 11, 12. Ps. cxix. 129. destroyed : but he that feareth the Behold, &c. I will send a famine, commandment, shall be rewarded (or &c. not of bread, &c. but of hearing the in peace).-Prov. xiii. 13.
words of the Lord; and they shall Every word of God is pure, &c.— wander from sea to séa, &c. to seek Prov. xxx. 5.
the word of the Lord, and shall not To the law, and to the testimony: find it.- Amos viii. 11, 12 if they speak not according to this. Do not my words do good to him word, it is because there is no light who walketh uprightly ?Micah ii. 7. (or morning) in them.-Isa. viii. 20. Christ (when the devil tempted
How beautiful upon the mountains him) said to him, It is written, Man are the feet of him who bringeth shall not live by bread alone, &c. It good tidings, who publisheth peace, is written again, Thou shalt, &c.that bringeth good tidings of good, Matt. iv. 4. 7. 10. that publisheth salvation : that saith Whosoever heareth these sayings unto Zion, Thy God reigneth Isa. of mine, and doeth them, I will liken lii. 7.
him anto a wise man, who built his As the rain cometh, &c. 80 shall house upon a rock, &c.—Matt. vii. 24. my word be which goeth out of my Luke vi. 47, 48. mouth : it shall not return unto me When the Pharisees contended, void, but it shall accomplish that Christ said unto them, Have ye not which I please, and it shall prosper in read what David did when he was
an hungered ? &c. Or have ye not ses, and in the Prophets, and in the read in the law, how that on the sab- Psalms, concerning me. Then opened bath day ? &c.—Matt. xii. 2, 3. 5. he their understanding, that they xxi. 16.
might understand the Scriptures; and Have ye not read, that he who said unto them, Thus it is written, made them at the beginning, made and thus it behoved Christ to suffer, them male and female ? &c. What &c.—Luke xxiv. 25. 27. 44-46. x. God hath joined together, let not man, 25—27. &c.—Matt. xix. 4—6.
Ye have not his word abiding in And he said, It is written, My you, for whom he hath sent, him ye house shall be called the house of believe not. Search the Scriptures; prayer ; but ye lave made it a den, for in them ye think ye have eternal &c. Did ye never read in the Scrip- life: and they are they which testify tures, That the stone which the of me. Had ye believed Moses, ye builders rejected, the same is become would have believed me; for he wrote the head of the corner ?-Matt. xxi. of nne: but if ye believe not his 13. 16. 42. Luke xx. 17.
writings, how shall ye believe my Have ye not read that which was words? -John v. 38, 39. 46, 47. ii. spoken unto you by God, saying, I 22. vii. 52. am, &c.—Matt. xxii. 31, 32. Luke Christ said, It is written in the XX. 37, 38.
' Prophets, And they shall all be taught All ye shall be offended, &c. For of God. Every man therefore who it is written, I will smite the shep- hath heard and hath learned of the herd, and the sheep of the flock shall Father, &c.—John vi. 45. vii. 38. 42. be scattered abroad. Thinkest thou The word that I have spoken, the that I cannot now pray? &c. But same shall judge him in the last day, how then shall the Scriptures be ful- &c.—John xii. 48-50. filled, that thus it must be ? But all I have given unto them the words this was done, that the Scriptures of which thou gavest me, and they have the prophets might be fulfilled. received them, &c. that the ScripMatt. xxvi. 31. 53, 54. 56. Luke ture might be fulfilled. Neither pray xix. 46. xxii. 37, 38.
I for these alone, but for them also Jesus said, Do ye not therefore err, who shall believe on me through because ye know not the Scriptures, their word.—John xvii. 8. 12. 20.. &c.- Mark xii. 24.
Matt. x. 14, 15. Heaven and earth shall pass away: These things are written, that ye but my words shall not pass away. might believe that Jesus is the Christ,
Mark xiii. 31. Luke xvi. 17. John the Son of God; and that believing, X. 35.
ye might have life.—John xx. 31. They have Moses and the pro- This Scripture must needs have phets, let them hear them. If they been fulfilled which the Holy Ghost, hear not Moses and the prophets, by the mouth of David, spoke before, neither will they be persuaded, though &c.--Acts i. 16. 20. one rose from the dead.-Luke xvi. When the apostles preached, they 29. 31.
proved their doctrine by the ScripWhen Jesus taught his disciples, tures; but this is that which was he said, O fools, and slow of heart to spoken by the prophet, &c. And believe all that the prophets have David, &c.—Acts ii. iii. iv. v. vii. spoken. And beginning at Moses, xvii. 2, 3. . &c. he expounded unto them in all It is not reason we should leave. the Scriptures, the things concerning the word of God, and serve tables, himself. All things must be fulfilled &c.—Acts vi. 2. 4. 7. xii. 7. which were written in the law of Mo- Samaria had received the word of
God, yet had not received the Holy Ye have obeyed that form of doc-
law, &c. Except the law had said, • Call for Simon, who shall tell thee Thou, &c.— Rom. vii. 7. words whereby thou and all thy house for the Scripture saith, Whosoever shall be saved.-Acts xi. 13, 14. x. believeth on him, shall not be ashamed. 6. 33. .
So then faith cometh by hearing, and Sergius Paulus desired to hear the hearing by the word of God.-Rom. word of God, &c. Almost the whole x. 11. 17." city came together to hear the word It is written, The reproaches, &c. of God, &c.--Acts. xiii. 7. 44-46. For whatsoever things were written xix. 20.
aforetime, were written for our learnThese were more noble than those ing; that we, through patience, and in Thessalonica, in that they received comfort of the Scriptures, might have the word with all readiness of mind, hope.-Rom. xv. 3, 4. and searched the Scriptures daily, The mystery, which was kept secret whether those things were so.-Acts since the world began; but now is xvii. 11.
made manifest, and by the Scriptures Apollos, &c. mighty in the Scrip- of the prophets, &c. made known, tures, &c. mightily convinced the &c.—Rom. xvi. 25, 26. Ephes. v. Jews and that publicly: shewing by 13. ii. 5, 6. the Scriptures, that Jesus was Christ. The preaching of the cross, is to -Acts. xviii. 24, 25. 28. xvii. 2, 3. them who perish, foolishness, &c.
Paul said, I wist not, brethren, that For it is written, I will destroy the he was the high priest; for it is writ- wisdom of the wise, &c.—1 Cor. i. ten, Thou shalt not speak evil of the 18, 19, ruler, &c.-Acts xxiii. 5.
Which things we speak, not in the After the way they call. heresy, words which man's wisdom teacheth, 50 worship I, &c. believing all things but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; which are written in the law, and comparing spiritual things, &c.-1 the prophets.-Acts xxiv. 14. John Cor. ii. 13. 6. ii. 22.
When the apostle had mentioned Saying none other things than many things which Israel did, &c. he those, which the prophets and Moses saith, Now all these things happened did say should come.-Acts xxvi. 22. unto them for ensamples: and they
There came many to Paul, &c. to are written for our admonition, upon whom he expounded and testified the whom the ends of the world are come. kingdom of God; persuading them - 1 Cor. x. 11. Rom. iv. 23, 24. concerning Jesus, both out of the law. Ye keep the ordinances (or tradiof Moses, and out of the prophets, tions) as I delivered them to you.-1 from morning, &c.-Acts xxviii. 23. Cor. xi. 2. . Which he had promised, &c. by his I declare unto you the gospel which prophets, in the holy Scriptures, &c. I preach, &c. By which also ye are The gospel of Christ; for it is the saved, if ye keep in memory, &e. For power of God unto salvation, &c.— I delivered unto you first of all that Rom. i. 2. 16, &c.
which I also received; how that Christ What advantage? &c. Much : be- died for our sins, according to the cause that unto them were committed Scriptures; that he was buried; that the oracles of God. By the law is he rose again the third day, accordthe knowledge of sin.-Rom. iii. l, ing to the Scriptures.- Cor, xv. I 2. 20.