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performance of holy and righteous deeds, and good and virtuous actions, must move and inspire in the soul of every living human being who has any love or fear of God in his heart, or is endued with any of those glorious, lovely, heavenly, and divine principles, which the holy religion of God and Christ so strongly and earnestly inculcate?

The author now having shewn, as he is impressed, a good and justifiable ground for the task he has engaged in, will proceed to give a short outline of the reasons for, and method he has proposed to pursue in the following sheets.

Justification before God in the Christian dispensation being the end and object of all true believers, wherein man is so immediately and seriously concerned as to his future prospect of eternal happiness or misery, must create the deepest interest, and necessarily requires, that ALL difficulties or doubts, as far as the same can be done, should be cleared up or removed. The chief object for attainment is to learn in what way, by and through what means justification is to be obtained:

and in our endeavours for this purpose, there arises a most necessary and essential matter which should also engage our attention, namely, when justification is expected to be received by man, according to the words of Scripture, and until we have arrived at this point, it may be said, there is not a plain, direct course for us to take in obtaining the object sought after; when this is acquired, many very apparent and almost insurmountable impediments and stumbling-blocks which obstruct and lie in the way, in the execution of this great work, will be removed. That there are three opinions, at least, very generally entertained on this point, is most certain, and which for the sake of distinction, may be called the three great divisions.

The first, that justification takes place in this life; and here we may see this first division branches out into different parts, such as one man holds, that justification takes place at baptism, another at the time of repentance, another at the time of embracing faith, and another when faith and good works are united and co-operate.

The second division, that justification itself is divided into parts, that the first or primary justification takes place in this life, and ultimately or finally perfected at the day of judgment. This division requires the same observations as the first, that it branches out into different parts, as to the time when the first justification takes place, whether at baptism, repentance, embracing faith, or when faith and good works are united and cooperate.

The third division is, that justification takes place at the day of judgment.

These various opinions must tend greatly to bring a cloud and mist upon the whole work; and it would be most apparent, if the latter opinion can be fully and satisfactorily proved from the authority of Scripture, to be the time when justification takes place, the other conflicting opinions must vanish. And upon the establishment of the last opinion, another great and momentous object will be obtained, that many doubts and difficulties necessarily arising from the division of opi

nions will be more easily placed in a train for agreement, as to what are the particular duties incumbent upon man to perform on his part to obtain justification. As long as there remains a difference of opinion as to the time when man is to have the sentence of justification passed upon him, there can be no expectation of an appearance of unanimity of opinion, as to what are the necessary means for man to use to effect this most interesting, desirable, and happy attainment.

Upon these grounds, any attempt, however feeble, which may be used to obtain so great, so important an object, must meet with the approbation of every true Christian. A principal intention of the author by the present discussion is to set right the tenet before stated, that justification takes place in this life, or on earth, which has very generally prevailed in the Christian Church, but which he conceives is erroneous, and will appear not founded by Scripture. In the discussion of this question, there are other tenets or principles so interwoven and connected with the subject of justification, such as, whether faith

alone justifies, or whether faith must necessarily be united to, and accompanied by good works to effect justification; what is real justifying faith; the connection of justification and salvation, with other important doctrines, which seem so immediately to bear upon the question, there appeared no mode or means to separate or keep them apart, but an absolute necessity to embody them in this discussion, which will herein after be fully seen.

It is proposed to arrange the whole subject under several general heads or chapters, for consideration and investigation, and thereby endeavour to establish a doctrine free from objections and difficulties, as far as facts and circumstances will admit, founded and supported by the authority of Scripture, interpreted and explained upon the best and most solid footing of reason and sound argument. Upon this ground, we must first ascertain what is the true meaning, sense, or signification of the word itself, justification. When this is satisfactorily obtained, we may then proceed to see, how, by, or through what cause, means, instrument, or conditions it is to be obtained,

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