« 前へ次へ »
but thou wouldest have felt the blesed effects; but now it is not so with me; my harp is upon the willows: and, with respect to sensible enjoyments, the Comforter that should relieve my soul feems to be far from me. Oh, what is all religion without the
operation of the Holy Spirit! An empty shew, and a weariness to the flesh.
I thought not a little of his divine personality ; and wondered much how any man living, who reads the scriptures; could ever have the effrontery to deny his being a divine person. But the world knows him not. I will send you a comforter whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knowetb bim; but ye know him, for be dwelleth with you, and shall be in you. He is therefore to be known by all believers: and those who do know him will glorify him and honour him; reverence him and adore him: and we know that all who are deftitute of him, and strangers to his operations, are fensual men, and know nothing but whac they know naturally.Hence fome have called the Holy Spirit no more than a quality, or an attribute of God; others an influence only; others no more than a name ; avowing that there is but one person in the Godhead, but a plurality of names :--as Simon Magus gave it out, that he himself was God the Father in Samaria, the Word in Judea, and the Spirit in the other parts of the world. Surely that monster of a man must be the father or ringleader of all heretics. But we know that no curious diving, no speculative
prying, no prefumptuous intruding, will meet with the divine approbation. God refifteth the proud. But o how safe, how sweet, how salutary, how satisfactory, how humbling and softening, are the sweet influences, operations, discoveries, and communications, of the Holy Spirit upon the souls of the children of God!
Various things are meant by the word Spirit in the holy scriptures:-as wind, the spirit of beasts, and the souls of men, and angels, both good and bad. But the Holy Ghost is distinguished from all these, being emphatically called God, not in a figurative or metaphoric, but in an absolute fense; to the acknowledgment of the mystery of God, and of the Father, and of Chrift. Col. ii. 2. In which passage the Holy Ghost stands first in the Holy Trinity, and he is distinct from the Father and from Christ; and surely, if he were not essentially God, to all intents and purposes, he never would have inspired the apostle to name and place him as God before the Father. The church also is called the temple of the Holy Ghost; es Ged hath faid, I will dwell in them and walk in them. No fpirit whatever, that is mentioned in all the book of God, is ever numbered with the persons in the Holy Trinity, or ranked with the Father and the Son, except the Holy Ghost. Nor is the church the property, the temple, or the habitation, of any but of God alone : and, as the church is called the temple of the Holy Ghost, the Holy Ghost must be God.
(4) A ghost is a spirit. The Holy Ghost and the Holy Spirit is one and the same in the original, as say the learned. Now what I have upon my mind, to write to my dear brother, is upon this important Subject: and, however weakly, or however imperfectly I may express myself, I am fully persuaded, by my own experience, that it is most fafe, and ever will be satisfactory and establishing to the elect of God, who are regenerated and renewed by the Holy Spirit, to believe as I do: while the contrary is most dangerous, if not perilous :-I mean, that the Holy Ghost must be acknowledged to be a divine person by all those who are sanctified, and who hope to be saved. They must acknowledge the mystery of God, of the Father, and of Chrift; for we are baptized in the name of all the three, and therefore, in our holy profession, we must acknowledge this greatest mystery of all mysteries.
A perfon, according to the account of learned men, is an individual being, an intelligent agent, who is fingular, and sublists, lives, speaks, underftands, acts, and works--and such is the Holy Ghost. Nor is there a distinct personal character but what the holy scriptures apply to him ;--fuch 3s I, me, hiin, he, his, thou. As for instance, Separate me Barnchas and Saul for the work whereunto I have called them. And when he is come he hall guide you into all truth: Again, I will send you a comforter, whom the world cannot receive, because it feeth Him not, neither knoweth him; but ye know HIM, for
HE dwelleth with you, and fall be in you. Again, Is ibe Spirit of the Lord straitened? Are these his doings? Again, Whitber sba!l I go from thy Spirit, or wbither shall I flee from thy presence? If I go up into heaven, Thou art there. Sure I am that these personal cha-; racters cannot be applied to a name, or to a quality in God, or to an inAuence from him, or to an ac-: cident, or to a transient impression ; much less to a nonentity. It is true, that personal characters, and personal actions, are sometimes ascribed to things inanimate; as, The trees went forth to choose themselves a king, and invited the vine and the olive to reign over ibem, who refused; and the bramble bid them put them.. felves under his hadow. The red sea also is represented as seeing and Aeeing. The floods lift up their bands on high, and the little bills skip like lambs. Yet we have no voice from any of these, only dumb Signs at best; these all wanted persons to speak for them. Jotham speaks for the trees and the bramble; Habakkuk speaks the motions of the sea, and David the actions of the liccle hills. But the Holy Spirit wants none to speak for him; he can speak of himself, and for himself. He spoke in Adam, giving names to all creatures. He spoke to PhilipĢo near, and join thyself to this chariot. He spoke to Peter --The Spirit said unto him, Behold, tbree men seek thee; arise, therefore, and get thee down, and ga with them, nothing doubting. The Spirit said, Separate me Barnabas and Saul. Blessed are the dead whicha die in the Lord: Yea, faith the Spirit, that they may.
rest from tbeir labours, and their works do follow them. The Holy Spirit not only speaks; but all that have ever spoken to any good purpose have been taught to speak by him; he brings the things to their minds, puts words in their mouths, and teaches them how to pronounce them. Which things also we speak, not in the words which man's wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghof teachetb. 1 Cor. ii. 13The Spirit put a word in Balaam's mouth, and bade him speak thus and thus; and the apostles spake as the Spirit gave them utterance. He not only speaks to the saints, and in them, but he teaches us in some measure to discern between those whom he teaches to speak, and those who follow their own spirit, and speak a vision out of their own heart, and not out of the mouth of the Lord. And how evident this is in all who write or speak of divine things without the Spirit's teaching! What flagrant errors, self-contradictions, inconsistencies, confusion, and darkening of counfel, doth appear! Instead of making rough places plain, and crooked things siraight, they make the plainest places tough, and the straightest things crooked; and, instead of going through the gates, | and removing the stumbling blocks, and casting up the high-way, they grope like the blind for the wall, cause many to stumble at the law, and destroy the way of our paths. And, if at any time any of them appear to be tolerably found in the letter, yet the deep things of the text, the unctuous matter of it, or the choice experience of the holy penmen that