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A. The outward and ordinary means, whereby Christ communicates to his church the benefits of his mediation, are all his ordinances; especially the word, sacraments, and prayer: all which are made effectual to the elect for their falvation 1.
Q. 155. How is the word made effectual to salvation?
A. The Spirit of God maketh the reading, but especially the preaching of the word, an effectual means of enlightning in, convincing and humbling finners n; of driving them out of themselves, and drawing them unto Christo; of conforming
them findeth life, and fhall obtain favour among them which are fanctified by of the Lord. v. 36. But he that faith that is in me. Pfa, xix. 8.-finneth against me, wrongeth his The commandment of the Lord is own soul; all they that hate me, pure, enlightning the eyes. love death.
ni Cor. xiv. 21. Butifall prophesy, 154. 1. Mat. xxviii. 19. Go ye and there come in one that believeth therefore, and teach all nations, not, or one unlearned, he is convinbaptizing them in the name of the ced of all, he is judged of all: v. 25. Father, and of the Son, and of the And thus are the secrets of his heart Holy Ghoft; v. 20. Teaching them made manifest: and so falling down to observe all things whatsoever I on his face, he will worship God, have commanded you; and lo, I am and report that God is in you of a with you alway, even unto the end truth. 2 Chron, xxxiv. 18. Then of the world. Aets ii. 42. And they Shaphan the scribe told the king, continued stedfastly in the apostles saying, Hilkiah the priest hath givdoctrineand fellowship, and in break en me a book. And Shaphan read it ing of bread, and in prayers. V. 46. before the king. v. 19. And it came, And they continuing daily with one to pass, when the king had heard accord in the temple, and breaking the words of the law, that herent his bread from house to house, did eat clothes. v. 26. And as for the king their meat with gladness and single- of Judah, who sent you to enquire ness of heart, v. 47. Praising God, of the Lord, so shall ye say unto and having favour with all the peo- him, Thus faith the Lord God of ple. And the Lord added to the Israel, concerning the words which church dạily such as should be sav- thou hast heard; v. 27. Because ed.
thine heart was tender, and thou 155. m Neh. viii. 8. So they read in didst humble thyself before God, the book, in the law of God distinct. when thou heardit his words against ly, and gave the sense, and caused this place, and against the inhabithem to understand the reading tants thereof, and humbledit thyself Afs. xxvi. 18. To open their eyes, before me, and didst rend chy and to turn them from darkness to clothes, and weep before me; I have light, and from the power of Satan even heard thee also, faith the Lord. unto God, that they may receive v. 28. Behold, I will gather thee forgiveness of sins, and inheritance to thy fathers, and thou shalt be ga
them to his imagep, and subduing them to his willq; of strengthening them against temptations and corruptions r; of building them up in graces, and establishing their hearts in
thered to thy grave in peace,
down of strong holds. v. 5. Casting A&sií. 37. Now when they heard down imaginations, and every high, this, they were pricked in their heart, thing that exalteth itself against the and said unto Peter, and to the rest knowledge of God, and bringing of the apostles, Men and brethren, into captivity every thought to the what shall we do? v.41. Then they obedience of Chrilt; v. 6. and havthat gladly received his words, were ing.in a readiness to revenge all disbaptized: and the same day there obedience when your obedience is were added unto them about three fulfilled. Rom. vi. 17. But God be thousand fouls, Acts viii. from verse thanked that ye were the servants 27. to 39.–And behold, a man of of fin; but ye have obeyed from the Ethiopia, an eunuch of great au heart that form of doctrine which thority,--v. 28. Was returning was delivered you. and fitting in his chariot, read E Mat.iv. 4. But he answered and faias the prophet. v. 29. Then the said, It is written, Man Thall not Spirit said unto Philip, Go near live by bread alone, but by every and join thyself to this chariot. v. word that proceedeth out of the 30. And Philip ran thither to him, mouth of God. v. 7. Jesus said unand heard him read the prophet E. to him, It is written again, Thou faias, and said, Understandest thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God. what thou readest?---v. 35. Then v. 10. Then faith Jesus unto him, Philip opened his mouth, and be. Get thee hence, Satan; for it is gan at the same fcripture, and written, Thou shalt worship the preached unto him Jesus. v. 36. Lord thy God, and him only shalt -And the eunuch said, See, here is thou ferve. Eph. vi. 16. Above all, water; what doth hinder me to be taking the shield of faith, wherebaptized? v. 37. And Philip said, with ye ihall be able to quench all If thou believelt with all thine heart, the fiery darts of the wicked. v.
17. thou mayest. And he answered and And take the helmet of salvation, said, I believe that Jesus Christ is the and the sword of che Spirit, whichi Son of God. v. 38. And they is the word of God. Pfal. xix. 11. went down both into the water, Moreover, by them is, thy servant both Philip and the eunuch, and warned: and in keeping of them he baptized him.
there is great reward. 1 Cor. x. 11. p 2 Cor. iii. 18. But we all with Now all these things happened unopen face, beholding as in a glafs to them for ensamples: and they are the glory of the Lord, are changed written for our admonition, upon into the same image from glory to whom the ends of the world are glory, even as by the Spirit of the come. Lord.
S Acts xx. 32. And now, brethren, ġ 2 Cor. x. 4. For the weapons of I commend you to God, and to the our warfare are not carnal, but word of his grace, which is able to mighty through God to the pulling build you up, and to give you an in
holiness and comfort through faith unto salvation f.
Q. 156. Is the word of God to be read by all ?
A. Altho' all are not to be permitted to read the word publickly to the congregation v, yet all sorts of people are bound
.to heritance among all them who are shall be saved. v. 14. How then santified. 2 Tim. iii. 15. And that shall they call on him in whom they from a child thou halt' known the have noi believed ? and how shali holy scriptures, which are able to they believe in him of whom they make thee wise unto salvation, thro' have not heard ? and how ihall they faith which is in Christ Jesus. v. 16. hear without a preacher? v. 15. All scripture is given by inspiration And how sail they preach, except of God, and is profitable for doc- they be ient? as it is written, How trine, for reproof, for correction, for beautiful are the feet of them that instruction in righteousnets: v. 17. preach the gospel of peace, and That the man of God may be per- bring glad tidings of good things! feci, throughly furnished unto at! v. 16. But they have not all obeyed good works.
the gospel. For Efaias faith, Lord, i Rom. xvi. 25. Now to him that who hath believed our report? v. is of power to eliablish
accord. 17. So then faith cometh by hearing to my gospel, and the preach-ing, and hearing by the word of ing of Jelus Chriit according to the God. Rom. i. 16. For I am not arevelation of the myitery, which shamed of the gospel of Christ, for was kept secret since the world be- 'it is the power of God unto salvagan. i Theff. iii. 2. And fent Ti- tion, to every one that believeth, to motheus our brother and minister the Jew first, and also to the Greek, of God, and our fellow labourer in 156. v Deut, xxxi. 9. And Mothe gospel of Christ, to establith you, fes wrote this law, and delivered it and to comfort you concerning your unto the priests the fons of Leri, faith; v. 10. night and day praying who bare the ark of the covenant of exceedingly, that we mightice your the Lord, and unto all the elders of face, and inight perfect that which Ifrael. v. 11. When all Ifrael is is lacking in your faith. v. 11. Now come to appear before the Lord God himself and our Father, and thy God, in the place which he our Lord Jesus Christ direct dur shall choose; thou shalt read this way unto you, v. 13. To the end law before all Ifrael, in their hearhe may establish your hearts un ing. v. 12. Gather the people toblameable in holiness before God, gether, men and women, and chileven our Father, at the coming of dren, and thy stranger that is with our Lord Jesus Christ with all his in thy gates, that they may hear, faints. Rom. xv. 4. For whatsoever and that they may learn, and fear things were written aforetime, were the Lord your God, and observe to written for our learning; that we do all the words of this law: v. 13. through patience and comfort of And that their children who have the fcriptures might have hope. not known any thing, may hear and Rom. x. 13. For whosoever shall learn to fear the Lord your God, call upon the name of the Lord, as long as ye live in the land, whi,
to read it apart by themselves w, and with their families x: to which end, the holy scriptures are to be translated out of the original into vulgar languagesy.
Q. 157 ther ye go over to possess it. Neh. they which testify of me. Ifa. xxxiv viii. 2. And Ezra the priest brought 16. Seek ye out of the book of the the law before the congregation, Lord, and read;, no one of these both of men and women, and all shall fail, that could hear with understand. * Deut, vi. 6. And these words ing, upon the first day of the se- which I command thee this day, venth month. v. 3. And he read shall be in thine heart: v. 7. And therein before the street that was thou shalt teach them diligently before the water-gate, from the unto thy children; and shalt talk of morning until mid-day, before the them when thou fittest in thine men and the women, and those that house, and when thou walkest by could understand': and the ears of the way, and wlien thou liest down, all the people were attentive unto and when thou risest up. v. 8. And the book of the law. Neh. ix. 3." thou shalt bind them for a sign upAnd they stood up in their place, on thy hand, and they shall be as and read in the book of the law of frontlets between thine cyes. v. 9. the Lord their God, one fourth And thou shalt write them upon part of the day, and another fourth the posts of thy house, and on thy part they confessed, and worship- gates. Gen. xviii. 17. And the Lord ped the Lord their God. v. 4. Then laid, Shall I hide from Abraham stood up upon the stairs of the Le- that thing which I do? v. 19. For vites, Jeshúa, and Bani, &c. and I know him, that he will command cried with a loud voice unto the his children and his houshold after Lord their God. v. 5. Then the him, and they ihall keep the way of Levites, Jeshua, and Kadmiel, &c. the Lord, Pfa. lxxviii. 5. For he faid, Stand up, and bless the Lord established a testimony in Jacob, and your God for ever and ever; and appointed a law in Ifrael, which he blessed be thy glorious name, which commanded our fathers, that tlrey is exalted above all blessing and should make them known to their praife.
children. v. 6. That the generatiw Deut. xvii. 19. And it shall be ons to come might know them, ewith him, and he shall read therein ven' the children who should be all the days of his life: that he may born: who should arise and declare learn to fear the Lord his God, to them to their children: v.7. That keep all the words of this law, and they might set their hope in God, these statutes, to do them. Rev. i. and not forget the works of God, 3. Bleffed is he that readeth, and but keep his commandments. they that hear the words of this y 1 Cor. xiv. 6. Now, brethren, prophecy, and keep those things if I come into you, speaking with which are written therein; for the tongues, what shall I profit you, extime is at hand. John v. 39. Scarch cept I shall speak to you either by the scriptures, for in them ye think revelation, or by knowledge, or by je have eternal life, and they are prophesying, or by doctrine? v. 9.
Q. 157. How is the word of God to be read?
A. The holy fcriptures are to be read with an high and reverend esteem of them z; with a firm persuasion that they are the very word of God a, and that he only can enable us
So likewise you, except ye utter byderstand; and the ears of the peothe tongue words easy to be under- ple were attentive unto the book of ftood, how shall it be known what the law. v. 4. And Ezra the scribe is spoken? for ye thall speak into stood upon a pulpit of wood, which the air. v. 11. Therefore if I know they had made for the purpose, not the ineaning of the voice, I shall v. 5. And Ezra opened the book in be unto him that ipcaketh a Barba- the light of all the people (for he was rian, and he that speaketh shall be above all the people) and when he a Barbarian unto me, v. 12. Even opened it, all the people stood up, fo ye,
fora inuch as ye are zealous v. 6. And Ezra blessed the Lord the of ipiritual gifts, feek that ye may great God, and all the people anexcel to the edifying of the church. Twered, Amen, amen, with lifting V. 15. What is it then? I will pray up their hands: and they bowed with the ipirit, and I will pray with their heads, and worshipped the the underttanding allo: I will fing Lord with their faces to the ground, with the spirit, and I will sing with &c. to verse 10. Exod. xxiv. 7. And the underitanding alto. v. 16. Elle he (Moses) took the book of the cowhen thou shalt ble’s with the fpi- venant, and read in the audience of rit,' how shall he that occupieth the the people: and they said, All that Fdon of the unlearned, fay, Amen the Lord hath faid, will we do, and at thy giving of thanks, fceing he be obedient. 2 Chron. xxxiv, 27. he understandeth not what thouiày. Because thine heart was tender, eft? v. 24. But if all prophesy, and and thou didit humble thyself bethere come in one that believeth fore God, when thou heardit his not, or one unlearned, he is con- words against this place, and against vinced of all, he is judged of all, v. the inhabitants thereof, and humb27. If any man speak in an unknown ledit thyself before me, and didit tongue, let it be by two, or at the rend thy clothes, and
weep before most by three, and that by course; me; I have even heard thee also, and let one interpret. v. 28. But if faith the Lord. Ifa. Ixvi. 2.- But there be no interpreter, let him keep to this man will I look, even to him filence in the church; and let him that is poor and of a contrite fpirit, speak to himself, and to God. and trembleth at my word.
157. z Pfa: xix. 10. More tobe de. a 2 Pet.i. 19. We have also a more fired are they than gold, yea, than sure word of prophecy, whereunto much fine gold; sweeter also than yedowellthatye take heed, as unto a the honey, and the honey comb. light that shineth in a dark place, unNeh. viii. 3. And he, read therein til the day dawn, and the day-Itarabefore the street that was before the rise in your hearts: v. 20. Knowing water-gate, from the morning un this first, that no prophecy of the til mid-day before the men and the scripture is of any private interprekomen, and those that could un. tation. v.21. For the prophecy came