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ever, because He delighteth in mercy.

Can there be a more express passage to clear, not only the possibility, but real inclinations in God to pardon sin, and “not retain his anger for ever?" Since the prophet seems to challenge all other gods, to try their excellency by his God; herein describing the supremacy of his power and super-excellency of his nature, that “He pardoneth iniquity, and retaineth not his anger forever." So that if the satisfactionists should ask the question, who is a God like unto ours, that cannot pardon iniquity, nor pass by transgression, but retaineth his anger until somebody make him satisfaction ? I answer, many amongst the harsh and severe rulers of the nation ; but as for my God, He is exalted above them all, upon the throne of his mercy, “who pardoneth iniquity, and retaineth not his anger forever, but will have compassion upon us.”

7. “And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.”+ Where nothing can be more obvious, than that which is forgiven, is not paid; and if it is our duty to forgive our debtors, without a satisfaction received, and that God is to forgive us, as we forgive them, then is a satisfaction totally excluded. Christ farther paraphrases upon that part of his prayer, ver. 14, “For if ye forgive their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you." Where he as well argues the equity of God's forgiving them from their forgiving others, as he encourages them to forgive

* Micah vii. 18.

| Matt. vi. 12.

others from the example of God's mercy in forgiving them; which is more amply expressed, chap. xviii. where the kingdom of heaven, that consists in righteousness, is represented by a king, “who, upon his debtor's petition, had compassion, and forgave him ; but the same treating his fellow servant without the least forbearance, the king condemned his unrighteousness, and delivered him over to the tormentors.” But how had this been a fault in the servant, if his king's mercy had not been proposed for his example ? How most unworthy therefore is it of God, and blasphemous, may I justly term it, for any to assert, that forgiveness impossible to God, which is not only possible, but enjoined to men !

8. “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”* By which it appears that God's love is not the effect of Christ's satisfaction, but Christ is the proper gift and effect of God's love.

9. "To him give all the prophets witness, that through his name, whosoever believeth in him, shall receive remission of sins.”+ So that remission came by believing his testimony, and obeying his precepts, and not by a strict satisfaction.

10. “If God be for us, who can be against us? He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for

* John iii. 16.

+ Acts x. 43.

us all."*

Which evidently declares it to be God's act of love, otherwise, if he must be paid, he should be at the charge of his own satisfaction, for he delivered up the Son.

11. “And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation, to wit, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them.”+ How undeniably apparent is it, that God is so far from standing off in high displeasure, and upon bis own terms contracting with his Son for a satisfaction, as being otherwise incapable to be reconciled, that he became himself the reconciler by Christ, and afterwards by the apostles, his ambassadors, to whom was committed the ministry of reconciliation !

12. “In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace.”Ị Now what relation satisfaction has to forgiveness of sins, or how any can construe grace to be strict justice, the meanest understanding may determine.

13. “But the God of all grace, who hath called us unto his eternal glory by Christ Jesus.”S He does not say that God's justice, in consideration of Christ's satisfaction, acquitted us from sins past, present, and to come, and therefore hath called us to his eternal glory; but from his grace.

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Rom. viii. 31, 32. + 2 Cor. v. 18, 19. Eph. i. 7, § 1 Pet. v. 10,

14. “ In this was manifest the love of God towards us, because that God sent his only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through him."* Which plainly attributes Christ, in his doctrine, life, miracles, death, and sufferings, to God, as the gift and expression of his eternal love, for the salvation of men.

1. In abolishing that other covenant, which consisted in external and shadowy ordinances, and that made none clean as concerning the conscience.

2. In promulgating his message, of a most free and universal tender of life and salvation, unto all that believed and followed him, (the light) in all his righteousness, the very end of his appearance being to destroy the works of the devil, and which every man only comes to experience, as he walks in an holy subjection to that measure of light and grace, wherewith the fulness hath enlightened him.

3. In seconding his doctrines with signs, miracles, and a most innocent selfdenying life.

4. In ratifying and confirming all, with great love and holy resignation, by the offering up of his body to be crucified by wicked hands; who is now ascended far above all heavens, and is thereby become a most complete captain, and perfect example.

So that I can by no means conclude, but openly declare, that the Scriptures of truth are not only silent in reference to this doctrine of rigid satisfaction, but that it is altogether inconsistent with the dignity of God, and very repugnant to the conditions, nature, and tendency of that second covenant, concerning which their testimony is so clear.

* 1 John iv. 9.

The Absurdities, that unavoidably follow the Com

parison of this Doctrine with the Sense of Scripture.

1. That God is gracious to forgive, and yet it is impossible for him, unless the debt be fully satisfied.

2. That the finite and impotent creature is more capable of extending mercy and forgiveness, than the infinite and omnipotent Creator.

3. “That God so loved the world, he gave his only Son to save it;" and yet that God stood off in high displeasure, and Christ gave himself to God as a complete satisfaction to his offended justice ; with many more such like gross consequences that might be drawn.

Refuted from right Reason. But if we should grant a scripture silence, as to the necessity of Christ's so satisfying his Father's justice; yet so manifest would be the contradictions, and foul the repugnances to right reason, that he who had not veiled his understanding with the dark suggestions of unwarrantable tradition, or contracted his judgment to the implicit apprehensions of some over valued acquaintance, might with great facility discriminate to a

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