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State of those that believe, in Christ, with the different States of an Heir, whilst he is a Child, and when he becomes of Age. The State of the Jews under the Law answers to the Heirs State of Child-hood. And as the Heir, as long as he is a Child, differs nothing from a Servant; even so the Jews under the Law differed nothing from Servants. For they were in bondage, or (f) a State of fervitude. And as the Heir, whilst he is a Child, does therefore differ nothing from a Servant, because he his under Tutors and Gover.
even so the Jews under the Law were therefore in á State of servitude, because, they were in bondage under the Elements of the World, viz. the Law, which was their Tutor or Gover. nor, or ( as the Apostle expresses'it) their Schoolmajter to bring them to Christ, Gal., 3., 24. And as the Heir is not to differ nothing from a Sern yant alwaies, but only until the time appointed of the Father; so neither were the Jews to continue alwaies under the Law, but only, till the fullness of the time was comc. For then God fent forth his Son, made of a Woman, made under the Law, to redeem them that were under the Law, that they might receive the adoption of Sons.
Now it must be observed, that when the Heir is said to differ nothing from a Servant during his Child-hood, and consequently to be a Son and not a Servant, when the time appointed of the Father is come; the Apoflc mcats, that he dif, fers nothing from a Servant in Condition and Circumstances during his Child-hood, and con-, sequently is in the Condition and Circumstances
of a Son, when the time appointed of the Fa-
temper of their Minds was such as befitted the State of Servants. And this is what St. Paul calls (Tisõpw a dracias )- the Spirit of bondage or servis țude; in opposition to what he calls (Tusõpra viogoias)
the Spirit of adoption, viz. that disposition and temper of mind which befits the State of Sons. For that ( av sūduce) Spirit frequently signifies the disposition and temper of a Mans Mind, I have already shewn.
Thus then it appears, what the Spirit of Adoption is. And from hence we may learn, after what manner it bears witness with, or testifies unto our Spirit, that we are the Children of God. For 'tis plain, that the Spirit of Adoption cannot bear witness with, or testify unto our Spirit, that we are the Children of God, by an immediate Revelation of that truth to our understandings. For what Man in his Wits can imagin, that the difposition and temper of a Mans mind, or what we call the frame of his Spirit, does reveal any thing to him? Wherefore the Spirit of Adoption does bear witness with, or testify unto our Spirit, that we are the Children of God, by being in us. For no Man can have in himself such a filial difposition and temper of mind, grounded upon, and resulting from Gods fatherly treatment of Him, unless he be the Son of God.
The Apostles Argument therefore, whereby he proves, that the Romans were the Sons of God, is very conclusive. For the Romans were admitted into the Church, the Middle Wall of Partition being broken down by Christ, who of the Jews and Gentiles made one Body. And by being Members of Gods Church as well as the Jews, they had the same relation to God which the Jews had. Now the Jews, tho' they had formerly been in a State of Servitude under the Law, were now in a State of Sonship, or in the Condition and Circumstances of Sons; God having by the appearance of Christ in the fulocfs of time delivered them from their
Servile State under the Law, and bestowed upon them the Glorious Liberty of the Sons of God. And consequently the Romans also, being Partakers of the same Priviledge, were in a State of Sonship. For the Apostle faies to them, Te have not received the Spirit of Bondage again unto fear, that is ye who have been united with the Jews into the Mystical Body of the Church, have not thereby been made subject to Law, as ye the Jews once were before Christ came; from which State of Bondage or Servitude such a difposition and temper of mind as becomes Servants would have been wrought in you, and have filled your Souls with Terror and dreadful apprehenfions. But ye have receiv'd the Spirit of Adoption, that is, you as well as the Jews are by the coming of Christ put unto a State of Sonship, and have consequently such a disposition and temper of mind as becomes Sons; even that by which we cry, Abba, Father, that is, by which we are in. clined and encouraged to approach God with courage and Confidence, as knowing him to be our most tender and compassionate Parent. And since this is the Cafe, 'tis manifest, that the Spirit (of Adoption ) it self beareth witness with, or testifies, unto, our Spirit, that we are the Children of God; because God would never place us in the Condition and Circumstances of his Children, and there. by cause in us such a disposition and mind as becomes none but his children, if we really were not his Children.
And now, how vastly different this witness of the Spirit which the Apostle speaks of, is from that witness by immediate revelation which our Adversaries contend for, the Reader cannot but perceive.
Joel 2. 28, 29. Rom. 10. 8. Col. . 23.
John 1. 9. explained. +8.TH
SHEY alledge these Wordş of Fael; And it
mall come to pass afterwards, that I will pour out my Spirit upon all flesh; and your Sons and your Daughters Maly prophecy ; your Old Men Mall dream Dreams; your Young Men shall see Visions : and also upon the Servants, and upon the Hand-maids in those daies will I pour out my Spirit, Joel 2.,28, 29. From hence they endeavor to prove, that the Spirit vouchsafes immediate Revelation to every true Christian. Now 'tịs true, that this passage contains a Prophecy which was to be fulfillid under the Gospel Dispensation; and that it contains also a promise of immediate Revelation: but then this Prophecy is so plainly limited, that the promises contained therein cannot be extended to all true Christians.
For it manifestly relates to that space of time, between the beginnings of the Gospel and the destruction of Jerusalem. This appears not only, 1. from the Prophets saying, that it pall come to pass afterward, v. 28. that is, as St. Peter explains
in the last daies, Acts 2. 17. which lasi daies do frequently signifie the end of the Jervis State; but also, 2. from the undeniable Characteristics of that very space of time. For the yery next words of the Prophet are these; And I will sew wore ders in the Heaven and the Earth, Bloud and Fire, and Pillars of smoak. The Sun Mall be turned into