Chapter XIV – Of Saving Faith.
- The grace of faith, whereby the elect are enabled to believe to the saving of their souls,(1) is the work of the Spirit of Christ in their hearts,(2) and is ordinarily wrought by the ministry of the Word:(3) by which also, and by the administration of the sacraments, and prayer, it is increased and strengthened.(4)
(1) Heb 10:39.
(2) 2Co 4:13; Eph 1:17,18,19; Eph 2:8.
(3) Ro 10:14,17.
(4) 1Pe 2:2; Ac 20:32; Ro 4:11; Lk 17:5; Ro 1:16,17.
- By this faith, a Christian believeth to be true whatsoever is revealed in the Word, for the authority of God Himself speaking therein;(1) and acteth differently upon that which each particular passage thereof containeth; yielding obedience to the commands,(2) trembling at the threatenings,(3) and embracing the promises of God for this life and that which is to come.(4) But the principal acts of saving faith are accepting, receiving, and resting upon Christ alone for justification, sanctification, and eternal life, by virtue of the covenant of grace.(5)
(1) Jn 4:42; 1Th 2:13; Jn 5:10; Ac 24:14 (2) Ro 16:26.
(3) Isa 66:2.
(4) Heb 11:13; 1Ti 4:8.
(5) Jn 1:12; Ac 16:31; Gal 2:20; Ac 15:11.
iii. This faith is different in degrees, weak or strong;(1) may be often and many ways assailed and weakened, but gets the victory;(2) growing up in many to the attainment of a full assurance through Christ,(3) who is both the author and finisher of our faith.(4)
(1) Heb 5:13,14; Ro 4:19,20; Mt 6:30; Mt 8:10.
(2) Lk 22:31,32; Eph 6:16; 1Jn 5:4,5.
(3) Heb 6:11,12; Heb 10:22; Col 2:2.
(4) Heb 12:2
Chapter XV – Of Repentance Unto Life.
- Repentance unto life is an evangelical grace,(1) the doctrine whereof is to be preached by every minister of the Gospel, as well as that of faith in Christ.(2)
(1) Zec 12:10; Ac 11:18.
(2) Lk 24:47; Mk 1:15; Ac 22:21.
By it, a sinner, out of the sight and sense, not only of the danger, but also of the filthiness and odiousness of his sins, as contrary to the holy nature, and righteous law of God; and upon the apprehension of His mercy in Christ to such as are penitent, so grieves for and hates his sins, as to turn from them all unto God,(1) purposing and endeavouring to walk with Him in all the ways of His commandments.(2)
(1) Eze 18:30,31; Eze 36:31; Isa 30:22; Ps 51:4; Jer 31:18,19; Joel 2:12,13; Am 5:15; Ps 119:128; 2Co 7:11.
(2) Ps 119:6,59,106; Lk 1:6; 2Ki 23:25.
iii. Although repentance be not to be rested in, as any satisfaction for sin, or any cause of the pardon thereof,(1) which is the act of God’s free grace in Christ;(2) yet it is of such necessity to all sinners, that none may expect pardon without it.(3)
(1) Eze 36:31,32; Eze 16:61-63.
(2) Hos 14:2,4; Ro 3:24; Eph 1:7.
(3) Lk 13:3,5; Ac 17:30,31.
As there is no sin so small but it deserves damnation;(1) so there is no sin so great, that it can bring damnation upon those who truly repent.(2)
(1) Ro 6:23; Ro 5:12; Mt 12:36.
(2) Isa 55:7; Ro 8:1; Isa 1:16,18.
Men ought not to content themselves with a general repentance, but it is every man’s duty to endeavour to repent of his particular sins particularly.(1) (1) Ps 19:13; Lk 19:8; 1Ti 1:13,15.
As every man is bound to make private confession of his sins to God, praying for the pardon thereof (1) upon which, and the forsaking of them, he shall find mercy;(2) so he that scandalizeth his brother, or the Church of Christ, ought to be willing, by a private or public confession and sorrow for his sin, to declare his repentance to those that are offended;(3) who are thereupon to be reconciled to him, and in love to receive him.(4) (1) Ps 51:4,5,7,9,14; Ps 32:5,6.
(2) Pr 28:13; 1Jn 1:9.
(3) Jas 5:16; Lk 17:3,4; Josh. 7:19; Ps 51.
(4) 2Co 2:8.