Samuel Stockell    



Knowledge of our Justification in Christ: In the treatment of the glorious and happy consequences of this gracious and powerful conquest {the conquest of grace;} which mighty grace hath made upon the hearts of God’s elect, in bringing them down from their innate pride and vainglory, which naturally fills their hearts, to the feet of the Lord Jesus Christ for life and salvation, without their own works, with a holy and humble willingness that Christ should be all in all in their salvation, and have all the praise and glory thereof, I would observe the following things, as the necessary result of their being made gracious and upright before God, in and through the blessed Lord Jesus Christ. First: A Conscious-Justification, or a sense of justifying love in and upon our own hearts. Justification is an act of Righteousness, wherein God accepteth the elect as righteous in his sight, only for the righteousness of Christ imputed to them. It was a custom among the ancient Romans, in their courts of justice, to give to persons, who upon trial were found innocent, a white stone, as a token of their justification. This was their acquittance, because they were found not guilty. To this our Lord alludes, when speaking to the Church in Pergamos, for he saith, “I will give to such,” as do, by living principles, “overcome the world,” not only to eat of the hidden manna, but I will give him also a sense of his justification. “He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; to him that overcometh will I give to eat of the hidden manna, and will give him a white stone, and in the stone a new name written, which no man knoweth saving he that receiveth it.” {Rev.2:17} I will pronounce the sentence of justification in his soul; and his conscience shall be the witness of it, which shall carry with it an evidence of its relation and union to me and my Father; and he shall know me with comfort by my name, “the Lord our Righteousness,” which none can know, but those that receive the sentence of justification into their own breasts. How miserably is this portion of sacred writ abused and mangled by the daubers of untempered mortar of our age, who are generally agreed to call this white stone of conscious justification, the stone of absolution or pardon, and so carry off the text from its genuine signification; for absolution or pardon supposes guilt, but justification does not. For those, who were found guilty amongst the Romans, had a black stone given to them, which was their sentence of condemnation, as being upon trial found guilty. I confess, that the pardon of sin is an inestimable blessing; yet it is not contained in the text under consideration. The Great God, then, does not justify persons, as sinners, but as righteous, in and for a righteousness which is not their own, but the Redeemer’s; so that the justified are perfectly righteous before God, or else he justifies the wicked, which is impossible. Objection: But God is said to justify the ungodly. {Rom.4:5} Answer: It is granted, that the elect are justified, while ungodly; but it does not therefore follow that they are justified as such. Indeed, the text serves gloriously to prove, that the elect, while in a state of ungodliness, are in a state of justification; but believers are nowhere in Scripture called by the terms of wicked, ungodly, &c. It is therefore evident, that the Great and Holy God is a Justifier of the elect, whilst in a state of sin and corruption; yet not for the sake of that sin and corruption, but for the sake of the Robe of Christ’s Righteousness, which he hath been pleased to impute to his people; for Christ is of God made unto them righteousness. {I Cor.1:30} Thus, it appears from this objection, and the text brought to prove it, that the justification of the elect, before faith, is a truth; and the doctrine itself is established. If I’m justified before faith, as it is plain that I am, why not as soon as Christ became my Surety. If we are justified alone by, and for the righteousness of Christ, it is a necessary consequence, that we are justified in the sight of God, not only before our faith, but before our open existence; yea, before the world began; or else the Righteousness of Christ had not a sufficient merit and virtue in itself to do the work, but needed the assistance of my faith to give it an additional value. This is to treat the Righteousness of Christ and his Sufferings as so many ciphers, which stand for nothing, till a figure come before them, to make them tell; so, till my faith precede what Christ hath done, it is all as nothing, but must wait the motion of my believing for all its glory. Now, the case is plain, that this way of going to work is no better {which I have already charged in this work upon Arminians and others} than a trampling underfoot the blood and righteousness of the Son of God, because they account them as things not holy enough to justify without faith. Let those that espouse such a notion consider the dangerous consequences attending them; for, notwithstanding all their pretended airs of sanctity, they will be found guilty of robbing the Redeemer of the Glory which is his due. But, perhaps, they will object and say, my charge is false, for they do not affirm, that there is not a sufficiency in the blood and righteousness of Christ to justify, without faith; but only, that according to Scripture Revelation, which contains the whole mind and will of God, there is no such thing as justification before faith; and that, therefore, God hath appointed that justification shall succeed believing. Answer: The reason why these gentlemen so strenuously endeavor to hide the glorious doctrine of Justification before believing from their hearers is what I am not able to comprehend; unless it be to keep them in ignorance of their liberty in Christ, and to bind them down to a servile admiration of themselves. The objection is partly true; but the greater part is false. Doubtless, the Scriptures contain a perfect Revelation of the mind and will of God; but that in this revelation there is nothing of the doctrine of justification, without faith, or before it, is a blatant falsity. Let us once more take a view of that passage in Romans, where we read with an impartial eye, and the doctrine, now under consideration, will shine forth with a convincing light. “But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly.” {Rom.4:5} Observe in the words, that the object of a believer’s faith is he who justifieth the ungodly; and if ungodly, then consequently unbelievers, and he that justifies them, as such; for he that justifies the ungodly justifies unbelievers; but God justifies the ungodly; therefore, he justifies unbelievers. {Prior to their personal faith, which faith evidences their justification in Christ.} I could have offered many other arguments upon this great and weighty subject drawn both from Scripture and the Perfections of God in order to show that the contrary opinions have a tendency to introduce Arminianism and Atheism; but this is not my present business, and I must beg pardon of my readers for so long a digression. My design is only to speak of a Conscience-Justification, which is no more than bringing home to the soul that justification, already spoken of; and I am, now to explain, how a sense of this is communicated to the soul, and proclaimed in the conscience by the Holy Ghost, as a glorious Consequence of Grace, in the conquest it hath made upon our hearts, in destroying the rebellion, in some degree, that filled our wills. A Conscience Justification then is a knowledge of our justification in the sight of God by the Righteousness of a Redeemer. This knowledge is conveyed to us by that Spirit who is the Enlightener of our understandings, by whom we are brought to see that Christ hath given to God a full satisfaction for all our sins, and that he doth for the sake of that Satisfaction justify us in his sight; so that we perceive it to be impossible for us to come into eternal condemnation; for, being once justified in his sight, we shall never be condemned. Oh, how sweetly is all this done upon our souls by the Holy Ghost bringing home to our conscience the blood and righteousness of Christ; so that by faith we are enabled to put on this righteousness with joy, and walk in the daily comforts thereof. We can now say with Paul, “who shall lay anything to our charge; it is God that justifieth;” or, “who shall condemn us; since Christ hath died for us,” hath reconciled us to God, and saved us from the Law, Death and Hell. Now we know, that “God is our God for ever and ever; he will be our guide even unto death;” {Ps.48:14;} and we are sure, that we shall never come into any condemnation, but shall arrive safe at the haven of everlasting glory. Likewise, a Conscience-Justification implies a freedom from guilt and fear; for it doth always cast out terror, and dispossess the soul of all slavish and servile apprehensions; so that it fears not the Law, though its threatenings are many and terrible, being sensible that it hath a righteousness that hath answered all its demands, and banished all its threats, and hath magnified the Law and made it honorable in every part of its rigorous and righteous demands. Such a one fears not sin, because he sees that it is finished and done away forever by his Redeemer; and that, though it be sought for it shall never be found; for Christ hath carried it away into the “land of forgetfulness,” into an everlasting oblivion, so that sin creates no fears, no condemning terrors or horrors in his sanctified and holy conscience. But, lest I should be blamed, and thought an antinomian, I shall take the liberty to explain myself a little further upon this point. Though a believer does not fear sin, as to its condemning power, yet he fears sinning, and as he is enabled by grace abhors sin and will shun all occasions leading to it; for, being a new creature, he cannot, as such, live in sin. I would, therefore, be understood, that a believer does not fear sin as damning, for he is not afraid of eternal damnation; for otherwise he would not be perfect as pertaining to the conscience, since all that are subject to such horrible apprehensions are still under the Law, being guided by a legal spirit and walking in bondage. It was a weakness of the Law dispensation that it could not make the comers thereunto perfect as pertaining to the conscience, for there was a continual remembrance of sin; {Heb.9:9;} but under the Gospel, in coming to our Great Sacrifice, our consciences are set at liberty; and the soul reads bright inscriptions of Divine love upon that Altar, the Lord Jesus Christ, to which legalists have no visible right, that casteth out all fear. There is no fear in love; love that comes into the soul under the sprinklings of the blood of Jesus Christ, which casts out all guilt and bondage. Hence the bond-woman and her son are turned out of doors, and must have no part, nor possession with God’s holy Isaac’s in whom the Divine seed is found. Furthermore, a Conscience-Justification implies a holy triumphing in a Redeemer. The believer’s language is, “my soul shall make her boast in the Lord; and I will sing of his salvation. I will bless him from day to day, and speak of the glorious honor of his Majesty.” {Ps.34:2, 96:2} God’s Church of old, under a living sense of their justification in the righteousness of Christ, breaks forth with joy and triumph, saying, “I will greatly rejoice in the LORD, my soul shall be joyful in my God; for he hath clothed me with the garments of salvation, he hath covered me with the robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom decketh himself with ornaments, and as a bride adorneth herself with her jewels.” {Is.61:10} We see here, that the ground of all this holy joy and triumph in the Lord God was extracted from a conscience justification; for the clear apprehensions by faith of an imputed righteousness gives the soul a quietness in the worst of times, and enables it to love the Redeemer, to cleave unto Him, and delight in Him more than in all the glories of time and sense. Another consequence of the truth of grace in the heart, made by this powerful and holy conquest {the conquest of grace} is a Conscience-Pardon of Sin. Remission of Sin is a glorious act of Grace, for by it I am forgiven all my trespasses; it finds me a sinner, but forgives all my sins. Pardon of sin is a Divine Favor that more immediately flows from the nuptial love of Christ to his Church. It is he, as a Husband, who forgives the sins of his wife, heals all her backslidings, and loves her freely, because he is married to her. Question: But do we not sin against our God and Father, the Great and Infinite Being, and doth not he forgive us our sins? Answer: In a strict and proper sense, the Infinite God doth not forgive sin, for it is readily granted by all who are sound in the Faith, that Jesus Christ hath given full satisfaction to Divine Justice for all sin, and hath fully paid the debt of his Church, his bride and spouse, whom he represented as a federal Head; and God himself hath declared his being well pleased with the Redeemer’s Righteousness, which is a full demonstration of his Satisfaction. “The LORD is well pleased for his righteousness' sake; he will magnify the Law, and make it honorable.” {Is.42:21} Now, Christ hath, by his active and passive obedience, magnified the Law and made it honorable; by which he gave satisfaction to Justice; and, if Christ hath satisfied the Justice of God for all the sins of his people, how then can it be justly, or with propriety of speech be said that God pardons our sins and transgressions? Sure I am, that debt can never be forgiven which is paid. For instance, suppose I owe a man a thousand pounds, and he should demand this debt from me, I must pay, or be imprisoned; my adversary is about to deliver me to the officer, that I may be cast into prison. I acknowledge, that the whole of this proceeding is just; but, in the interim, a third Person interposes, who formally loved me and demonstrates that he still loves me, in engaging {as my Surety} to pay my debt. “I love him,” saith he, “he shall not go to jail, for I will pay the debt. Here I give my bond for the payment.” This being a Man of great worth and credit, his bond is accepted; and, at the time appointed, {“the fulness of the time” Gal.4:4,} he pays off the bond to the uttermost farthing. Tell me, now, did my creditor forgive me my debt? I’m certain every wise man will answer in the negative. This then, is the true state of the case in hand; for the wrath of God might have been sent down upon us, as soon as ever we had our existence in a way of strict Justice; and it must have been inflicted, if Christ the Redeemer had not stepped in, and as our spiritual Moses, {our eternal Surety,} stood in the gap for us. {Ez.22:30} Absolute Justice was ready to apprehend us and commit us to the everlasting prison of darkness for our iniquities, but our glorious Head and Husband, Jesus Christ, who had loved us in our Supralapsarian state, as his bride and spouse, did as our Husband lay himself under an obligation to pay our debt; he became our Sponsor or Surety, and gave {to speak after the manner of men,} a bond for our debt, for all was placed to his account, and he did, at the time appointed by the Father, dip his pen in his own blood, and cross the black lines of all our sins, by which he made to God a full payment of our debt. Tell me now, were my sins forgiven me in a strict and proper sense? This must be also answered in the negative; and God {give me leave to say} is more glorified thus, than if he had absolutely forgiven sin, without any Satisfaction, for then he must have forever let the honor of his Justice fall to the ground, which is in this way advanced and fully satisfied. Objection: This way totally eclipses the freedom of Divine Grace which is so abundantly displayed in the Holy Scriptures. Answer: It does not eclipse the glory of Free Grace as will appear as we consider in what sense God may be said to forgive the sins of his people. Our God may be said to forgive sin, with respect to us, though not with respect to Jesus Christ; for our parts, we never were able to pay anything, and yet on us he takes no vengeance. But God may also be said to pardon sin in another sense, as he was pleased from everlasting to find a satisfactory price to his own Justice; it was a price of his own finding, and a price of his own accepting; his Justice is satisfied and our debt is fully paid; yet it was his own free love and grace that found the matter and way, by and in which it was accomplished. In these and such like foreign and improper senses God may be said to pardon our sins, when he manifests the freedom of his Grace, for all our sins are fully pardoned and God hath nothing against us, because all things between him and us stand fair and clear; so that, in all our prayers to God for pardon of sin we do not ask Him to issue out a fresh act of pardon, but only to reveal his love and grace to us afresh, and to seal to our souls a sense of pardon in the blood of Christ. “Oh {saith a gracious and truly enlightened believer,} Lord, lead me to Christ’s Blood and Satisfaction, or bring that blood and satisfaction home to my soul by which means I shall see that fury is not in thee towards me, and that will satisfy my conscience, that I am a pardoned man. O give me daily manifestations of pardoning grace into my heart, that my soul may sing thy praise, and triumph in thy Holy Name.” In this light the soul perceives God to be at peace with it, and carries about, in itself, a sealed pardon into which it looks with a daily delight and pleasure, as knowing that its Redeemer hath removed all its sins out of God’s judicial sight forever; so that, under such a dispensation, it is dispossessed of all fears that may arise from the apprehension of Divine Wrath, and it perseveres in a course of cheerful obedience to Christ, it’s glorious Husband, and the great Paymaster of its debt. Our Redeemer, having paid our debt, in the relation of an Husband hath thereby delivered us from the Law by a powerful divorcement, and married us unto himself in a sensible way; {“wherefore, my brethren, ye also are become dead to the law by the body of Christ; that ye should be married to another, even to him who is raised from the dead, that we should bring forth fruit unto God” Rom.7:4;} and we are now to live to Him, to be faithful and holy, cleaving to none but Him. Samuel Stockell {Redeemer’s Glory Unveiled, 1733}

Righteousness of Christ: The love of Christ, though thus great and stupendous in itself and delightful to the regenerate; yet to persons dead in trespasses and sins, it is all as a thing of naught, and makes no impression upon the heart; so that, until he is converted, the sinner remains full of rebellion against Christ and the light of the everlasting Gospel. These are they that rebel against the light; {Job 24:13;} and they manifest that rebellion in their hearts by cleaving close either to their lusts or to the rotten rags of their own doings. Nature hath always in it a propensity to act in this manner; and there must be a manifestation of Divine Power to slay this rebellion; especially the legal rebellion which is in the heart of every natural man. It is extremely hard work for such a one to part with his own righteousness for Jesus Christ and his Righteousness; nay, it is harder to part with it than it is to perform it; for, when a poor deluded wretch hath brought himself to live up to such laws, rules and terms, he then imagines that he has acquired something to recommend him to the love and favor of God. Now he looks upon these as his Savior, and esteems them as his gods and his all; {Judges 18:24;} for take these away, and he has nothing more; for he beholds them as the price of his happiness and the hope of his reward. This is the real language of his soul in any of his performances; suppose it to be prayer, with what courage will he say his prayers when he reflects upon his behavior the past day and finds nothing to upbraid himself with, either by omission or commission, {though, if he had eyes, he would see enough in himself every hour to abhor himself for,} then he looks upon God as under an obligation to hear and accept him; but, if he labors under guilt, then his prayer cease, as he is afraid to pray; and, if he doth, he thinks his praying obtains a pardon and his tears make satisfaction. Indeed, they do make satisfaction, but not to God, for they only satisfy his legal conscience and quiet his own mind; and now all is easy and well, and the man thinks himself a very good Christian, and he is so esteemed, it may be, by all his community. Alas! I fear that most of the professors of our day are upon this rotten bottom. If so, how hard then must it be to bring persons off from this sandy foundation, for I am persuaded, that all the laws of moral suasion, and all the Arminianized offers, tenders, proffers and invitations of grace, with all the plainest directions and strongest motives can never do it; because, if it is ever done, it must be by the manifestation of a supernatural Power. The Report of Christ and the Truths of the Gospel will never be believed until Jehovah reveal his arm; {Is.53:1;} for such a soul cleaves to the Law as a broken Covenant and regards not Christ; yea, in his very heart Christ is disapproved, and the sparks of his own kindling are preferred to the Son of God. His hopes of eternal life are built upon his own obedience to the Law, not considering that it cannot give life; {Gal.3:21;} and, as such, is not fit to be trusted to; yet, notwithstanding this, Christ who is the fit, full, and only Savior is disdained and rejected, though he be the only way of life. Thus, in vain do men seek the living amongst the dead; they seek for living comforts and a living glory in a dead and abolished Law; and they love that {their own legal performances} which can neither give life, nor take away death; for there can be no enjoyment of life and glory, nor a freedom from eternal death and shame, but by Jesus Christ the Redeemer, whose worth is infinite; for God will not accept of anything short of a perfect Righteousness, and nothing will please him but a complete Satisfaction. Samuel Stockell {Redeemer’s Glory Unveiled, 1733}

Righteousness of Christ: If inward grace received be designed by the Lord to be our right and title to the heavenly glory what need is there for the Blood and Righteousness of Jesus Christ? Because, if this notion be true, the Person of Christ, his fullness, righteousness and blood are only accidental and in reality a thing of no value. This then is a principle that all the Lord’s people will absolutely abhor, since it leads its embracers, like other heretics, to trample underfoot the blood of the Son of God, and to render his Death and Propitiatory Righteousness altogether ineffectual. {Heb.10:29} I mean, that righteousness without us, which consists in the Redeemer’s Obedience and Death; and I’m sure, that the objection cannot be made by a man who has the truth of grace in his soul, because this true grace, this Christ within us, who is our hope of glory, {Col.1:27,} ever teaches to admire, adore, trust in, and value a Christ without, who is the Fountain from whence itself doth flow. Good Lord, help us all to take heed and beware of these new lights that lead from Christ the Light of Life, down to the chambers of darkness and death. This is the light within, in which so many blind wretches boast and glory; for they tell us, that they are got into a new dispensation, a dispensation beyond Jesus Christ, so that the Man at God’s right hand is entirely neglected and forgotten; nay, this Rock of our Salvation is by them lightly esteemed. {Deut.32:15} - Notorious blasphemy indeed! As if the Holy and Blessed Spirit of all Truth, who is Christ’s Glorifier, {Jn.16:13,14} whose work it is to render Christ gloriously delightful to the heaven born soul, should teach and influence them to neglect Him, reject his Righteousness and despise his Blood; which is the practice of all those that have forsaken the true Sacrifice for Sin. {Heb.10:26,29} Thus, instead of having the Spirit of Grace they do despite unto him, in hating, condemning and reproaching those who by the Spirit of Grace expect Salvation only by the Blood and Obedience of the Redeemer Jesus Christ, that died outside the gates of Jerusalem, without anything in themselves as a right thereunto, and look upon all they have in themselves to be simply the effects and consequences of his dying love, desiring also to live in obedience unto Him in all those external institutions which keep his Name up in the world; not that they live upon these institutions, but live upon Him in them. They eat bread at a table to show forth his death to the world, whilst at the same time they enjoy within the living fruits of his death. {I Cor.11:26} They drink wine to demonstrate to the world that they believe that he once shed his blood to make reparation for sin, whilst his blood in them {by faith sensibly} cleanses them from all sin. {I Jn.1:7} Thus, in waiting upon Him they find a great reward. {Ps.19:11} They use water in baptism in obedience to his command to convince the world that they willingly follow the Lamb whithersoever he goeth; {Rev.14:4;} whilst in their souls they feel a heavenly baptism coming down upon them as rain upon the new mown grass, and as showers that water the earth. {Ps.72:6} Thus, refreshed with the dews from the everlasting hills {Ps.121:1} they go on to show forth to the world by their obedience to the Lord’s institutions, that all the things represented by these are done and finished in the Person of Jesus Christ; and that they themselves possess the spiritual fruits thereof; and what they do, in all these ways of Gospel obedience is only in obedience to their Lawgiver. From the whole of what hath been said it is evident that man at best with all his great pretenses to purity and holiness cannot save himself. Observe then, that where there is true grace, that soul is willing to be saved alone by Christ Jesus; for he is sensible that he must certainly sink forever under the load of Divine Vengeance if he be not found in the Redeemer’s Righteousness; he sees, that nothing short of what Christ is, and hath done, can save him, because Christ alone is able to bear up under the Wrath of God. Samuel Stockell {Redeemer’s Glory Unveiled, 1733}

Salvation in Christ: The Word of God doth nowhere teach us that we are accepted or saved for our sincerity or anything that is within our power to do; yet we acknowledge that sincerity is found in all believers, and that it is an evidence of their interest in the Covenant of Grace, but not the condition thereof. As I said before, so I say now again, that heaven did never intend upon any consideration whatsoever to confer everlasting salvation upon sinners for their performances, since all that our God and Father gives is purely upon the Redeemer’s account; so that, now in this way all boasting is excluded, for the Law of faith admits of none, {Rom.3:27,} unless it be in the Lord Jesus Christ; because everyone that glories must glory in the Lord; {I Cor.1:31;} and truly gracious souls can make their boast in the Lord, as the psalmist saith, “My soul shall make her boast in the LORD; the humble shall hear thereof, and be glad.” {Ps.34:2} - Thus, the believer sees, that his whole salvation lies entirely in Christ Jesus, and that all the blessings thereof are handed forth, without money and without price. This indeed is wonderfully sweet unto him, because he seeth that he hath nothing to buy with, and that grace is free to the worst and vilest of sinners; and, though once he came to Christ with his duties, prayers, and tears, expecting to have an interest in his Righteousness for them, he now breaks out in language quite different from his former apprehensions. Samuel Stockell {Redeemer’s Glory Unveiled, 1733}

Righteousness of Christ: The Righteousness of Christ is the only dress of a sinner, who is made to see his nakedness, and that he hath not so much as a rag to wrap around his naked soul. This is the man that knows how to prize the Redeemer and value his Righteousness; because, being clothed with it, he shines with a spotless beauty before the eyes of infinite Justice and Holiness. Now, if our own righteousness was a sufficient covering, and could shelter us from the wrath of God, then, it will follow, that Christ came into our world upon a very trifling and insignificant errand; which is such a reflection upon the Wisdom and Power of God, that it can never be admitted as a truth. Nay, to no purpose did Christ work out this glorious Robe, if our own covering will hide our nakedness. If life may be had, in whole, or in part, by the Law, it follows, that Christ died in vain; and to all those who seek happiness by their own legality, Christ is become of no effect; {Gal.5:4;} for, living and dying in such a condition, they might as well have been born Turks, brought up Pagans, or lived and died Jews, in the height of enmity against the Lord Jesus Christ, because they should then have had as much benefit by the Redeemer, as, whilst they retain their legal principles, they can obtain by the profession of Christianity. Samuel Stockell {Redeemer’s Glory Unveiled, 1733}

Divine Donation of all Grace in Christ: Here we see, how that the Redeemer and the soul of an elect vessel are virtually united; now, it is become a visible member of Christ’s mystical body, and can triumph in its near relation to Him. Now, the floods and crystal streams of everlasting love which have run underground, ever since the fall, rise up and overflow all the banks; yea, the mountains of a lapsed state, and powerfully tear down all before them; and the soul sits down entirely satisfied with its completeness in the Lord Jesus Christ. {Col.2:10} But here it must be observed, by the way, that notwithstanding all this grace received, the soul at certain times, will find motions and inclinations to its own works, and be ready almost to say, “well done,” when it performs a duty in an enlarged frame of mind. This itch of legality, the soul’s greatest plague, will never be perfectly cured, till it ascends up to the realms of brightest bliss and glory; there, indeed, it shall have a perfect holiness, and shall forever set the crown upon the Redeemer’s Head. In that advanced state, the saints shall drop their crowns at the feet of Christ and he shall be all in all. There nothing in the saints shall be a rival to the Redeemer, or ever claim the least share of honor with him; but, now alas; we find too often, that we love our graces too much, for we are apt to prize them more than the perfect Righteousness of Jesus Christ. We rejoice very much in received grace, but very little in the fullness of Christ, our great Head, in whose hand all our stock of grace, both of the right to, and meetness for resides. How often do we grieve more for the want of comfortable frames in the dispensations of grace, than for the want of Him in whom all fullness dwells? Oh could we but see more clearly, what Christ is, and what he is of God made unto us, our walk would be more full of peace and satisfaction, and our frames more steady and unshaken; but when men dwell too much upon their frames, and not immediately upon the Person, Love, and Righteousness of Jesus Christ, give me leave to say, that they are committing spiritual adultery with their own graces and holy dispositions. We are far too prone to put our graces in Christ’s stead, and prize and value them too much, in trusting to and resting upon them. When this is the case, we may very justly say, that such a one hath forsaken the Fountain of Living Waters, and lives upon the streams which are short of the Fountain. Sure I am, this is playing the harlot with our graces and frames, because we ought to live upon nothing but Christ, what he is in Himself, and what of God he is made unto his people. Believer, it is an infallible and eternal truth, that Christ never gave thee the principles of grace and love, faith and holiness, to live upon, trust to, and rest in. No, no, he gave thee grace to love Him, to live upon Him, to rest and trust in Him forever; and these are the principal and ultimate designs of the Divine donation of all grace. From these conceptions, I think, I may very justly draw this conclusion, that the Love of God and the Grace of his Covenant are subject to mutation; for, if my frames and graces, according to these imaginations are good and heavenly, then, all is well for eternity; but, if they prove the reverse, then, all my joys are darkened and dreadful evils are expected. Such poor souls as these, who have attained to no greater light into the mysteries of Grace, do really believe, that it is their incumbent duty to be always working hard, to keep themselves in the love of God, in maintaining a comfortable disposition of soul which they are incapable of doing; and so they are pierced through with many sorrows, and their days are spent in hard bondage; and all this flows from the fountain of ignorance in the stability of the Everlasting Covenant, and the completeness of that Sacrifice that Jesus Christ hath once made for sin. Samuel Stockell {Redeemer’s Glory Unveiled, 1733}

Living by Faith in Christ: To sleep or die in Jesus; {“even so them also which sleep in Jesus” I Thes.4:14;} is to die in Faith, as well as to die in the Faith. To die in the Faith is to die in the belief of the great and glorious Doctrines of the Gospel, to go out of the world in a believing confidence that they are true; but to die in Faith is to die possessed of the habit or principal of the grace of faith, by which at times we can believe that all those glorious things contained in the promises of God’s Word are our own, and shall be fully ours when we take possession of our heavenly inheritance, are set down in the Presence of our dear Redeemer, and receive the end of our faith, even the salvation of our souls. It is one thing to believe the facts of the everlasting Gospel, and to accredit the things contained therein; but quite another thing to believe that I am one of those for whose sake these things were accomplished, and for whose consolation they are recorded. What is all faith without this assurance? If I cannot or do not believe that Christ is mine and I am his, and that in this relation he died for me, religion without this would be but an empty sound, for unless I am persuaded that God is my God, and that Christ is my Savior, and hath redeemed me from death and sin; I say, all profession without this would be a complete uncertainty, and would plunge us into fear and trouble, and all our acts therein would be a toil, a task, and one entire piece of drudgery; but when once we are made to see in the Spirit’s light, that Christ died for us, to save us from everlasting destruction, and hath delivered us from all the desserts of our transgressions, and from everything that might have rendered us obnoxious to the Divine Displeasure, and that he has removed all impediments out of the way of the enjoyment of our Redeemer; this is what makes Christ sweet to the believing soul, and the language of his heart is, “Oh; none but Christ; none but Christ!” What joy and peace is here in believing; this is living in faith; so to die in Jesus is to die thus in faith; and this was that which made the Apostle so comfortable in his day, and that carried him through all the fatigues and troubles that attended his situation in this world. “I am crucified with Christ; nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.” {Gal.2:20} Oh; glorious faith! Resolute boldness in his Lord’s love. In the face of every difficulty, I am crucified with Christ, I am despised for the Son of Man’s sake, and set at naught by a wicked world, and a blind pharisaical people; yea, for his sake I am killed all the day long, nevertheless I live; that is, I live a life of faith and love, yet not I but Christ liveth in me. This life is not mine own natural life, but a life communicated to me from Christ, a life hid in Christ with the Father before all worlds; it is his life, not mine, and the life which I now live in the flesh, I live by this Divine principle, which actuates all my conduct in life; I live by the faith of the Son of God, that faith which is thus his gift to me; I live by faith in his Person, by faith in his Righteousness, by faith in his Offices, and faith in his Love; for he loved me, and as a full proof of that love, gave Himself for me in an eternal Act of Grace, according to Covenant Engagements with the Father, and resolved to save me from wrath and eternal damnation, whereby he has shut up the Gates of Hell, and opened the Gates of Heaven; and who in the fullness of time, came and shed his blood, and that for me, and by his Spirit setting me in the right way, and leading me to a city of eternal Habitation. These heavenly considerations is what gives the soul a pleasure beyond expression! Oh; to say in faith, “who gave himself for me,” is that which will enable us to live in comfort and die in peace, like those gallant worthies we read of in that little martyrology, or book of martyrs, the eleventh chapter of the Hebrews, where you have an account of what many went through, under the times before the Gospel Dispensation, under an Administration in which all their happiness was veiled; and what they expected to enjoy, and that which was the principal ground of their Glory lay under shadows, and they had only the promises of them, which they received, though they saw them afar off, and were persuaded of the Truth of their accomplishment, they embraced them, they died in Faith, as being fully satisfied of their interest in the promised Savior; and in all the things, that the things of this dispensation were types of, they saw through those figures of their Law, the Lord that was to come, as Abraham saw his day afar off, and was glad. They had such joy in view of the heavenly world, as made them to confess that they were strangers and pilgrims in this world, and that they had no continuing city here, but sought one to come, which had Foundations, whose Builder and Maker was God. They esteemed all that they suffered for the cause of Christ as nothing in comparison with that eternal Weight of Glory that they were hoping to be the happy participants of; and thus the Apostle declares, “and did all eat the same spiritual meat; and did all drink the same spiritual drink; for they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them; and that Rock was Christ.” {I Cor.10:3,4} They enjoyed Christ in the wilderness; for they had lively representations of the Divine Majesty, the pillar of cloud by day, and the pillar of fire by night; the Shekinah was with them, for they had the glorious presence of the Lord, both in and round about the Tabernacle, and in their Camp, as also Christ went before them, and God was their Reward. So these all died in faith who are the true Israel of God, for they died in Christ, being persuaded of their interest in Christ, and all that Christ was and would accomplish was for them, and all he was to do and suffer was for them, by virtue of their union relation to Him. To be in the Faith, is to be persuaded, that when heart and flesh shall fail, that he will take me to Himself and be the strength of my heart and my portion forever, {Ps.73:26,} that where he is, there I may be also, to partake of the blessed rewards of his Obedience and Death, and be filled with the sweet fruits of his love, and eternally to chant forth in exalted and uninterrupted strains, “Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and honour, and glory, and blessing;” {Rev.5:12;} who will forever appear upon the Throne with the memorials of his meritorious Death and Sufferings. “And I beheld, and, lo, in the midst of the throne and of the four beasts, and in the midst of the elders, stood a Lamb as it had been slain.” {Rev.5:6} And the Apostle Peter speaks of his blood, as shed from before the Foundation of the world in the Decree and Council of God. He is, in the context, speaking of the sinners redemption, which is only with the precious blood of Christ, as of a Lamb without blemish, and without spot; “who verily was foreordained before the foundation of the world;” {I Pet.1:19,20;} and Christ might be actually slain from the foundation of the world, in a strict, proper and Gospel sense, if we consider that the Gospel Dispensation is called a world, or the world, in distinction to the Dispensation of the Law; for the Gospel Ministration, in the days of Messiah, is often by the ancients called the world to come; and the Apostle in Hebrews speaking about the glorious things of the Gospel, exhorts them to retain those choice Truths that had been revealed to them; for they were to take heed not to let them slip; for, says he, “if the word spoken by angels was steadfast,” then they must be certainly so, which were spoken by the Lord, and confirmed by his apostles, with signs, miracles, and the gifts of the Holy Ghost. {Heb.2:2-4} This Dispensation is the world to come, whereof we speak; for from the foundation of this world was the Lord Jesus Christ actually slain. The Lamb slain from the foundation of the world, {Rev.13:8,} who now appears as a Lamb that died for the consolation of his people; and though the preaching of the Cross is looked upon as foolishness by many, yet to everyone that is called and enabled to believe, Christ is the Power of God and the Wisdom of God, and such preaching is precious to them; and the blood of Christ manifested in this way of preaching to their souls melts their hearts with joy and hope! - To die in Jesus is to die in a Covenant relation to Him; to die in the faith of the Truths contained in the Gospel, and to die also in a full belief that all the precious things revealed in these truths are mine. Samuel Stockell {Redeemer’s Care of Saint’s Departed, 1745}

Eternal Generation of the Son of God: Consider the doctrine of Eternal Generation as some men call it, for it is a contradiction in terms to be infinite eternal and yet a subject of an act; namely, generation. This point we will here, God enabling us, prove at the standard, and see if it be good; for this hath been of late a matter of great controversy, and good men have differed about it; for there are such, I apprehend on both sides of the question. This doctrine was received by the ‘early church fathers’ as appears by their councils, but never revealed in the Book of God; for this method of expounding the doctrine of the Trinity, that one Person in the Godhead begat another, &c., hath been the foundation of all that Arianism, Sabellianism, &c., that hath disturbed the peace of the Church ever since. It would have been well for us, if these ‘church fathers’ could have contented themselves with the bare Mind of God in things mysterious, and not have imposed their sense upon us; for there are some now, who with great airs of modesty tell us, that this doctrine of the Eternal Generation of the Son of God is a profound mystery, yet it must be believed upon their authority, {and without this blank creedal confession of the same, one cannot become a member of their confessional assemblies, gathered upon the teachings of men, destitute of a true Revelation of Christ upon which his Church is built upon.} But if this is a mystery it is not of the Gospel, for it is one of their own making, and it is plain that they do not believe one word of what they say, for as they go about directly to explain it, they can tell presently how One can be Three and Three One, how the One Infinite and Eternal God begat, &c., the Person of the Son; one begets, the other is begotten, and a third proceeds from both these two; and this is their Trinity and the modus of its existence. Thus their mystery becomes a subject of demonstration, and since they make it by their methods a subject to be accounted for, I would beg leave to ask these gentlemen one plain and modest question: Whether he that begets and he that is begotten are of equal date? When pinched with this, they fly to their old refuge, exclaiming that it is a mystery; this is only when the argument fails them, for they will dispute the point as long as possible they can; well then, he that is begotten cannot be co-eternal with the begetter, and this is the ground of the Arian triumph, and they never desire any greater concession for the support of their scheme, than that Christ, as God, is begotten of the Father, and upon this concession, the Orthodox have never been able to support the truth against their opposition. If we ask farther what was begotten, some of these gentlemen cannot tell us; but some more penetrating than the rest of their brethren, say that Deity did not beget Deity, for that would be a multiplication of Deity, and this would plunge us into Tritheism. Asked again, what was begotten? Why, the Person of the Son of God, not his Deity, but his Person in that Deity; mark it, Deity could not be begotten, because it would multiply Deity; but Personality is begotten, therefore the Persons in the Godhead are multiplied, and so each Person not Infinitely Eternal, in accordance with their scheme. Besides, it destroys the immutability of the Divine Being, in that it changes the modus of his existence; well, here is a Person begotten without Essence, and yet in an Essence, and this is separating the Person of Christ from the Divine Nature, which is little better than the blasphemy of the Arians and their accomplices; and it is setting up a Person without an Essence, which is very ridiculous and foolish; or if any Essence, it can be but a finite one, themselves being judges, because an Infinite Essence could not be begotten, and this is Arianism with a witness. In a word, the generation of the Second Person in the Godhead overthrows the Eternity, Self Existence, and Independency of his Person. – Oh, dangerous opinion! For my part I heartily believe Christ to be the Son of God, and that the Son of God is the Infinite and Eternal Jehovah, and is with the Father and the Holy Ghost the Object of Divine worship. Now by Christ’s being the Begotten, the First Begotten, and the Only Begotten, we are, I humbly conceive, to understand the Father’s eternal designation of Him to his Office; for the execution of which, he was to assume our nature, take it into union with his Infinite and Unbegotten Person; this design and execution of it was the begetting of Jesus Christ – God, Man, Mediator. Here the Person of Christ, as Mediator, is the First and Only Begotten of the Father, and as such is the Object of all Divine adoration, because the two Natures in this wonderful begotten Person are inseparable. Now can it from all this be supposed, that the Divine Nature of Christ, or an Infinite Person in the Deity, was from eternity begotten, without relation either to his Humanity or Office, I apprehend not. It appears that this doctrine is very far from any dishonorable or depreciating thoughts of the Sonship of Jesus Christ, as it secures his Godhead against the Arian, and his distinct personality as an infinite, eternal, self-existent, independent, uncreated and unbegotten Person in the Trinity, eternally subsisting with the Father and the Holy Ghost in the same undivided Essence against the Sabellians; and we think by this method, that we are better able to maintain the doctrine of the Trinity and the Godhead of Jesus Christ, than by the common scheme of eternal generation. If in this we are weak, I hope that our stronger brethren will pardon us, when we do assure them that we do not publish these things because we affect novelty, but with an hearty and sincere regard to the honor and glory of Jesus Christ. Moreover, I have showed in my “Redeemer’s Glory Unveiled,” {page 41,} that he which begets must be before the begotten, in order of time, and superior, in order of Essence or Nature. Nay, it is impossible that the begotten of God should be of the same Essence with God, because self-existence, eternity and independence are the inseparable properties of an Infinite Essence; so that it is plain according to this notion, that Christ is neither eternal nor self-existent, for if he was eternal he could not be begotten, and yet to be Eternal is proper to the Infinite Essence, but if Jesus Christ was begotten, {according to their scheme,} therefore he could not be infinitely eternal, independent, nor self-existent. These consequences render this doctrine disagreeable to Truth. This act of eternal generation has never been defined to us, by any of those learned gentleman that espouse it by tradition from their fathers; they would do well to speak out, and tell us whether it be an imminent act or a transient act, or what, &c.? Many things more might have been offered, but I must pass it for I cannot hold it fast, because by the Word of Truth does not appear to be good. Samuel Stockell {Scripture & Reason, the Standard of all Religion, 1743}

Antinomianism: Oh then, how happily do such live, who continually live above all their frames, and above their highest attainments; for that promise is made good unto them: “He shall dwell on high; his place of defense shall be the munitions of rocks; bread shall be given him; his waters shall be sure,” and, “thine eyes shall see the King in his Beauty.” {Is.33:16,17} He shall surely dwell on high, above all things below Covenant love and Mediatorial fullness; he shall dwell safely, for the “place of defense shall be the munitions of rocks,” where he shall have rich provision, for his bread shall be given him, and his waters shall be sure; {“Jesus said unto them, I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst.” Jn.6:35;} for he lives upon the eternal and immutable love of God, in the Lord Jesus Christ the Redeemer, the stability of the Covenant in and with Christ, the un-alterable worth of his Fullness, and the Glory of his Everlasting Righteousness. Let his frames be what they will, let his measure of sensible enjoyments be never so small; nay, let them be quite fled, he knows that his peace is made with God by Jesus Christ, and his life, his joy, his glory, and his crown are all in his Dearest Lord and Redeemer; and he can say with the prophet in a spiritual sense: “Although the fig tree shall not blossom, neither shall fruit be in the vines; the labour of the olive shall fail, and the fields shall yield no meat; the flock shall be cut off from the fold, and there shall be no herd in the stalls; yet I will rejoice in the LORD, I will joy in the God of my salvation.” {Hab.3:17,18} So the believer, under the want of all spiritual frames, though there be none of the fruits of the Spirit in a sensible way to his soul, but all are entirely cut off; yet he can rest satisfied in the love of his God, for he knows, let his frame be what it will, his Redeemer and what he is made in a sovereign way to him are always the same in the sight of God. This is the believer’s main comfort, that Jesus Christ hath pleased and satisfied the Father; and all his business, as assisted by daily grace, is to please Jesus Christ by living upon, and trusting in Him, in which he brings forth fruit to the glory of Christ, as the great End in all he doth. Objection: These notions are the principles of the Antinomians, and seem to be calculated at least to weaken those just regards that we ought to have to the Law of God and a holy conversation. Assertion: Hatred to truth, as it is in Jesus, is the cause that the glorious doctrines of the Everlasting Gospel have ever been, by the devil and his emissaries, stigmatized and loaded with hard names, to render them frightful and odious to the children of men. Thus, like poor Ignoramuses, who will cry down Popery and Priestcraft, when they are got over a bottle, pinning all their faith upon the sleeve of some blind teacher, but never with the noble Bereans search the Scriptures to see whether these things be so, or not; or like wise men, by sanctified reason, weigh things impartially in the balance of the sanctuary. No, they take all for granted upon trust, and believe it upon the bare authority, it may be, of a blind guide, and they are resolved to follow him close, until both fall into the ditch, in doctrine and conversation; and certainly the consequences will be dreadful, if Grace prevent it not, for they will both fall into the ditch of perdition, out of which they will rise no more. Now, if the casting off of all obedience to the Law, as the matter of my acceptance with God, and laying aside all my graces, when they rival with the Redeemer in his perfect Righteousness, and my sole dependence and trust upon Him for what he is, and hath done for me, in my room and stead; if these be Antinomianism, the good Lord grant, that I may be an Antinomian forever. If this is to be vile, I will, as grace shall help me, be still more vile, and account it my glory; and, whereas it is objected, that such sentiments as these lead men to cast off duty, and to live sinfully, I observe, that this objection appears to come from a person destitute of all true grace, who never felt the love of Christ with power, because I can with confidence affirm the objection to be a palpable falsehood, a most abominable and notorious lie; for I know from my own living experience, that the Absoluteness of Divine Grace in Eternal Love, the Covenant of Salvation, the Fullness of Christ, the Head of this Covenant, and the Sovereignty of the Blessed Spirit in his gifts and operations, which without any of my own works, entitle me to glory, and will fit me and bring me thither, have been in my soul a spring of duty and obedience. Oh how have I, at such a time, been delighted in the Law of God after the inner man! Oh, what praying, what meditating, what reading, and hearing the Word were, then, put in practice! What exactness of walk in the world, in the family, and in the Church of God did the conception and application of these glorious Truths produce! How were they attended with a holy, practical obedience, and all with delight and pleasure! Give me leave to say, that these principles of Free, Glorious and Sovereign Grace do promote such a living to God, for God, and with God, through the Redeemer, that none of those, who cry out against these Truths as Antinomianism, are capable of; for it is evident from the objection, that they are strangers to the power of Divine Love and Grace. I wholeheartedly bless my God for such Antinomianism as this; for, before I knew it and felt its power, I performed duty from a legal spirit, a spirit of fear and bondage, and lived upon my frames, but I found religion was very hard work, and I went on in my legal course very heavily. But now, through the Riches of Free Grace, since the times of refreshing came from the presence of the Lord, {Acts 3:19,} I experience, that wisdom’s ways are ways of pleasantness, and all her paths are peace. {Pv.3:17} Now, the Christian way is a pleasant way and a believer’s duties are his delight. Samuel Stockell {Redeemer’s Glory Unveiled, 1733}

Antinomianism: As for the charge of Antinomianism, we through God’s Grace regard it not. Let our adversary slander, bark and grin, fight against and curse the Free Grace of God, and those who love it, as enemies to his righteous Law, it is a causeless curse, and shall never light on our heads, for we love and keep the Law of God better than they can. Nay, our obedience to God’s Law by which we are justified is not only preferable to the sinful doings of legalists, but even to all the holiness of the angels and archangels about the throne, those glorious sons of the morning, who never sinned or left their first estate; so that we do not make void the Law through faith, but establish, magnify, and make it honorable; for the obedience of God’s elect, by which they are justified, is preferable to that of the Angels, because the obedience of God’s elect is the personal obedience of the Lord Jesus Christ, made theirs by an act of Sovereignty in Imputation, as is evident from the parable that the Holy Ghost runs between Adam and Christ, in the fifth of Romans, verse fourteen to the end. Nay, give me leave to say, that the personal obedience of the saints is more agreeable to the holiness and spirituality of God’s righteous Law than all the righteousness of them who hope to be saved by their own doings; for the believer performs all his duties from a principal of pure love to his dear Redeemer, but the others from a principal of servile bondage, as the fear of God’s wrath and eternal displeasure. The proud legalists may allege what they will against the doctrines of Free Grace and an Unconditional Salvation in Christ; they may clamor as loudly as they please against them as Antinomian fooleries; yet, through the Grace of God we will adhere to them as our greatest glory and consolation; for they have been our greatest joy, and we have experienced them to be the only motive to the cheerful performance of duty. Let vain legalists know that we can offer up to God a more excellent sacrifice than they; namely, the Lamb of God, the Lord Jesus Christ, for the Holy Ghost puts his obedience into our hands, whenever we come before the Lord; and we have found by blessed experience that when by the threatenings of the Law a flood of guilt gushes into our consciences, we can stop its impetuous streams with the blood of the Everlasting Covenant. Sure I am from a living experience, that they are wholly strangers to good works, who were never created by the Lord the Spirit, a second time, in Christ Jesus; for the saints are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, and all pretensions to good works, without this Divine creation are no better than an empty name. - May the Lord help you to take heed, if it be consistent with his Divine will, of despising the Redeemer’s glory, and that which most exalts his grace and greatness. It is evident then from what hath been said, that the glorious and absolute Grace of God, as it is brought home to the soul by a Divine power, produces the most glorious fruit, to the praise and glory of that grace which hath accepted us in the Beloved. {Eph.1:6} Observe then, that all our good works flow from received Grace, and are the consequences, not the causes, of the love of God in Christ Jesus; and it is impossible for us, until we are made partakers of the holy seed, to bring forth any good fruit. It is our being engrafted into this holy Stock, that enables us to bring forth the fruits of righteousness, not to obtain salvation, but because we are saved already; not to escape the wrath of God, but because the Redeemer himself hath already delivered us from it, but to show gratitude to Jesus Christ, as an Husband who hath secured heaven for his bride and spouse, and freed her from all dangers and fears of hell. The believer now, being delivered from the hands of his enemies; namely, all his guilt and slavish fear, can serve his Lord in holiness and righteousness all his days. It is to Jesus Christ that we owe all our love; and we cannot but love him, whenever we reflect on his love to us, who hath saved us from wrath, and left us nothing to pay to the demands of the Law, but hath fully discharged all himself. This is the ground of all love and service to Christ; and this love never did, never will, nor can lead to licentiousness of life. No, very far from it, for it kindles in the heaven-born soul a mighty flame, by which the heart is melted for sin, and it is the strongest cord to bind us to the service of Jesus Christ. Samuel Stockell {Redeemer’s Glory Unveiled, 1733}

Arminianism: The doctrines of the Arminians, and their friends the Pelagians, who teach universal redemption and man’s free will; heresies that are so destructive to the honor of Christ and the Holy Ghost, and that tend also to destroy the souls of men; for, if the Redemption wrought out by Jesus Christ be for all men, to put them into a savable state, and the rest that remains to be done, in order to our possessing of the Salvation, is to be performed by us as fallen creatures, then we are all in a most wretched condition, because if Adam fell from his original perfect condition, how can we ever expect to stand in our lapsed state? But the open preaching of these tenants {the false Gospel of Arminianism} hath been by many of our ‘great men’ exploded, who have represented them as gross and pernicious errors; who have made a thundering noise against them, and talked loudly about Free and Efficacious Grace, when all the while, in fact, this hath been nothing else but a masquerade, for they are Arminians themselves, Pelagians still, notwithstanding all they will say to the contrary. This will appear to demonstration from their general mode of preaching, especially in what they call the application of their sermons, wherein it is to be observed, that the Spirit is commonly excluded; nay, hardly so much as named; and, if he be named sometimes by them, it will not clear them of this heavy charge of Arminianism; for they exhort sinners, as such, after they have been laying down many rules to walk by, in order to secure the doctrinal privileges that they have been insisting upon, to pray for the Spirit, which supposes that they can pray without Him. Thus, they exhort men in a state of nature to do what is entirely out of their power, which to me is downright tantalizing; for it is as much as if I should offer a man my estate which is all in land, and tell him that I offer it to him freely, but he must take it and move it to another part of the country. This in fact, is to offer the man nothing at all; for it is, in reality only game and mockery. We would then conclude that our Doctors and Priests, the leaders of their several parties, are men who would not be guilty of mocking poor souls; as I’m sure that they profess to be blessed with more holiness, and that they have a very tender regard for the good of souls, which they make a very large profession of, when they enter into their ministerial functions; I mean at the time of there being, what they call, ordained. We are then bound by their own confession to believe that they are sincere and would not be guilty of mocking souls for the world; from whence it follows, that they believe that sinners, dead in trespasses and sins, are capable to do as they direct them. Now, they prove themselves to be Arminians indeed; for listen, and you will hear presently these and such like expressions to fall from their mouths: “Sinners, make your peace with God; get into Christ; receive him now today, while he is offered unto you. He is now on a Throne of Grace, and waiting to be gracious. Oh, do not slip this opportunity, this season and day of grace, which is now put into your hands, for you may never have another! Oh, what would the damned in hell give for another season of grace! How do they rend and tear to think that they have slipped their season, and the day of their visitation?” And at this rate they go; adding motives and directions on how to get their interest in Christ secured, and to make a right improvement of what they call a day of grace. Now, all wise men shall be judges, if this be not Arminianism and Pelagianism, for this universal way of offering Christ, Grace and Salvation to sinners must be founded upon universal redemption, and a sufficient power in all to receive them, and make them effectual to eternal life. It is then very evident, that these gentlemen are Arminians and Pelagians, notwithstanding all they profess to the contrary; and I will take the liberty to affirm, that all such preaching gives the lie to the Doctrines of Election, Particular Redemption and Efficacious Grace, for to me it is impossible to reconcile a universal offer of Christ and Grace with Particular Election and Salvation! If there be an universal offer of Christ and Salvation made to sinners in the Scriptures, then God hath designed Christ, Grace, and Salvation for all; and if so, where is Election? If you say, God hath not designed Salvation for all, according to the doctrine of Election, then you are Blasphemers of God in charging him with deceit and mockery, whom you represent as offering Salvation to all, although he never intended it, but for a few in comparison of the world. Do you imagine that by your preaching of offers that you shall convert more than the elect of God; or do you think that, if you do not preach in this manner, that any of the elect shall miscarry, and come short of the glory prepared for them from the foundation of the world? If this be the case, read the scripture which saith, “the foundation of the Lord standard sure, having this seal, the Lord knoweth them that are his; and, if you have read it, you not believe it! Samuel Stockell {Redeemer’s Glory Unveiled, 1733}

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Wherefore, holy brethren, partakers of the heavenly calling, consider the Apostle
and High Priest of our profession, Christ Jesus. Hebrews 3:1