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love; which puts a man upon doing even the will of
Talk. You lie at the catch again; this is not for edification.
Faith. Well, if you please, propound another fign how this work of grace discovereth itself where it is.
Talk. Not I, for I fee we shall not agree.
Faith. Well, if you will not, will you give me leave to do it?
Talk. You may ufe your liberty.
Faith. A work of grace in the foul discovereth itfelf, either to him that hath it, or to standers by.
To him that hath it, thus; it gives him conviction of fin, especially the defilement of his nature, and the fin of unbelief, (for the fake of which he is fure to be damned, if he findeth not mercy at God's hand, by faith in Jefus Chrift.) This fight and fenfe of things worketh in him forrow and fhame for fin: he findeth, moreover, revealed in him the Saviour of the world, and the abfolute neceffity of clofing with him for life, at the which he findeth hungrings and thirstings after him; to which hungrings, &c. the promife is made. (John xvi. 8. Rom. vii. 24. John xvi. 9. Mark vi. 16. Pfal. xxxviii. 18. Jer. xxxi. 19. Gal. ii. 15. Acts iv, 12. Matt. v. 6. Rev. xxi. 6.) Now according to the ftrength or weakness of his faith in his Saviour, fo is his joy and peace, fo is his love to holinefs, fo are his defires to know him more, and alfo to ferve him in this world. But tho', I fay, it difcovereth itself thus unto him, yet it is but feldom that he is able to conclude, that this is a work P 2 of
of grace, because his corruptions now, and his abused reason, make his mind to misjudge in this matter; therefore in him that hath this work, there is required a very found judgment, before he can with steadiness conclude that this is a work of grace.
To others it is thus difcovered:
1. By an experimental confeffion of his faith in Christ. 2. By a life answerable to that confeffion, to wit, a life of holiness, heart-holinefs, family-holiness, if he hath a family, and by conversation-holinefs in the world; which in the general teacheth him inwardly to abhor his fin, and himself for that, in fecret; to fupprefs it in his family; and to promote holinefs in the world; not by talk only, as an hypocrite or talkative perfon may do, but by a prac tical fubjection in faith and love to the power of the word. (Rom. x. 10. Phil. viii. 17. Matt. v. 9. Job xxiv. 25. Pfal. 1. 20. Ezek. ix. 43.) And now, Sir, as to this brief defcription of the work of grace, and alfo the discovery of it, if you have ought to object, object; if not, then give me leave to propound to you a fecond question.
Talk. Nay, my part is not now to object, but to hear: let me therefore have your fecond question.
Faith. It is this: Do you experience this first part of the defcription of it? and doth your life and converfation teftify the fame? or ftandeth your religion in word or tongue, and not in deed and truth? Pray, if you incline to answer me in this, fay no more than you know the God above will fay Amen to, and alfo nothing but what your confcience can juftify you in: for not he that commendeth himself, is approved, but whom the Lord commendeth. Befides, to fay, I am thus, and thus, when my converfation, and all my neighbours tell me I lie, is is great wickedness.
Talk. Then Talkative at first began to blush; but, recovering himself, thus he replied: You come now to experience, to conscience, and God; and to appeal to him for juftification of what is spoken: this kind of discourse I did not expect; nor am I difpofed to give an answer to fuch questions, because I count not myself bound thereto, unless you take upon you to be a catechizer; and though you should so do, yet I may refuse to make you my judge: but I pray will you tell me why you ask me fuch questions? Faith. Because I faw you forward to talk, and be cause I knew not that you had ought elfe but notion. Befides, to tell you all the truth, I have heard of you, that you are a man whofe religion lies in talk, and that your conversation gives this your profeffion the lie. They fay you are a spot among christians; and that religion fareth the worse for your ungodly conversation; that some already have stumbled at your wicked ways, and that more are in danger of being destroyed thereby; your religion and an alehouse, and covetoufnefs, and uncleanness, and fwearing, and lying, and vain company-keeping, &c. will ftand together. The proverb is true of you, which is faid of a whore, to wit, "That fhe is a fhame to "all women;" fo you are a fhame to all profeffors.
Talk. Since you are ready to take up report, and to judge fo rafhly as you do, I cannot but conclude you are fome peevish or melancholy man, not fit to be difcourfed with, and fo adieu.
Chr. Then came up Chriftian, and faid to his brother, I told you how it would happen; your words and his lufts could not agree. He had rather leave your company than reform his life, but he
gone as I faid; let him go, the lofs is no man's but his own; he has faved us the trouble of going from him, for he continuing (as I fuppofe he will do) as he is,
is, he would have been but a blot in our company; Befides, the apostle fays, From fuch withdraw thyself.
Faith. But I am glad we had this little difcourfe with him; it may happen that he will think of it a gain; however I have dealt plainly with him, and fo am clear of his blood, if he perisheth.
Chr. You did well to talk fo plainly to him, as you did; there is but little of this faithful dealing with men now a-days, and that makes religion to ftink fo in the noftrils of many, as it doth; for they are thefe talkative fools, whofe religion is only in word, and are debauched and vain in their converfation, that (being fo much admitted into the fellowship of the godly) do puzzle the world, blemish christianity, and grieve the fincere. I wish that all men would deal with fuch, as you have done; then fhould they either be made more conformable to religion, or the company of faints would be too hot for them. Then did Faithful say,
How Talkative at first lifts up his plumes!
Thus they went on talking of what they had feen by the way, and fo made that way easy, which would otherwise, no doubt, have been tedious to them, for they went through a wilderness.
Now when they were got almoft quite out of this wilderness, Faithful chanced to caft his eye back, and efpied one coming after them, and he knew him. Oh! faid Faithful to his brother, who comes yonder? Then Chriftian looked, and said, It is my good
good friend Evangelift: Ay, and my good friend too, faid Faithful, for it was he that fet me the way to the gate. Now was Evangelift come up unto them, and thus faluted them: "
Evan. Peace be with you, dearly beloved; and peace be your helpers.
Chr. Welcome, welcome, my good Evangelift; the fight of thy countenance brings to my remembrance thy ancient kindness and unwearied labours for eter..al good. my
Faith. And a thousand times welcome, faid good Faithful; thy company, O fweet Evangelift, how defirable it is to us poor pilgrims!
Evan. Then faid Evangelift, How hath it fared with you, my friends, fince the time of our last parting? What have you met with, and how have you behaved yourselves?
Then Chriftian and Faithful told him of all things that had happened to them in the way; and how, and with what difficulty they had arrived to that place.
Evan. Right glad am I, faid Evangelift, not that you have met with trials, but that you have been victors, and for that you have, notwithstanding many weakneffes, continued in the way to this very day.
I fay, right glad am I of this thing, and that for mine own fake and yours; I have fowed and you have reaped; and the day is coming, when both he that fowed and they that reaped, fhall rejoice together; that is, if you hold out; for in due time fhall
[Illuftrations from note y to z]
Our two pilgrims, having got rid of Talkative, are pleafingly furprized by the appearance of their first friend and inftructor in the divine life, Evangelift. Agreeable to the nature of his name, character and office, he proceeds to exhort his