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but thou wouldeft have felt the bleffed effects; but now it is not fo with me; my harp is upon the willows: and, with refpect to fenfible enjoyments, the Comforter that should relieve my foul feems to be far from me. Oh, what is all religion without the operation of the Holy Spirit! An empty fhew, and a wearinefs to the flesh.
I thought not a little of his divine perfonality; and wondered much how any man living, who reads the feriptures, could ever have the effrontery to deny his being a divine perfon. But the world knows him not. I will send you a comforter whom the world cannot receive, because it feeth him not, neither knoweth him; but ye know him, for he dwelleth with you, and fhall be in you. He is therefore to be known by all believers: and thofe who do know him will glorify him and honour him; reverence him and adore him: and we know that all who are deftitute of him, and ftrangers to his operations, are fenfual men, and know nothing but what they know naturally.-Hence fome have called the Holy Spirit no more than a quality, or an attribute of God; others an influence only; others no more than a name ; avowing that there is but one perfon in the Godhead, but a plurality of names:-as Simon Magus gave it out, that he himself was God the Father in Samaria, the Word in Judea, and the Spirit in the other parts of the world. Surely that monster of a man must be the father or ringleader of all heretics. But we know that no curious diving, no fpeculative
prying, no prefumptuous intruding, will meet with the divine approbation. God refifteth the proud. But how safe, how fweet, how falutary, how fatisfactory, how humbling and foftening, are the fweet influences, operations, difcoveries, and com-: munications, of the Holy Spirit upon the fouls of the children of God!
Various things are meant by the word Spirit in the holy fcriptures:-as wind, the spirit of beafts, and the fouls of men, and angels, both good and bad. But the Holy Ghoft is diftinguished from all these, being emphatically called God, not in a figurative. or metaphoric, but in an abfolute fenfe; to the ac-· knowledgment of the mystery of God, and of the Father, and of Chrift. Col. ii. 2. In which paffage the Holy Ghoft ftands firft in the Holy Trinity, and he is diftinct from the Father and from Chrift: and furely, if he were not effentially God, to all intents and purposes, he never would have inspired the apostle to name and place him as God before the Father. The church alfo is called the temple of the Holy Ghost; as God hath faid, I will dwell in them and walk in them. No fpirit whatever, that is mentioned in all the book of God, is ever numbered with the perfons in the Holy Trinity, or ranked with the Father and the Son, except the Holy Ghoft. Nor is the church the property, the temple, or the habitation, of any but of God alone : and, as the church is called the temple of the Holy Ghoft, the Holy Ghost must be God.
A ghoft is a fpirit. The Holy Ghoft and the Holy Spirit is one and the fame in the original, as fay the learned. Now what I have upon my mind, to write to my dear brother, is upon this important subject: and, however weakly, or however imperfectly I may exprefs myself, I am fully persuaded, by my own experience, that it is most fafe, and ever will be fatisfactory and establishing to the elect of God, who are regenerated and renewed by the Holy Spirit, to believe as I do: while the contrary is most dangerous, if not perilous :-I mean, that the Holy Ghoft must be acknowledged to be a divine perfon by all those who are fanctified, and who hope to be faved. They muft acknowledge the mystery of God, of the Father, and of Chrift; for we are baptized in the name of all the three, and therefore, in our holy profeffion, we must acknowledge this greatest mystery of all mysteries.
A perfon, according to the account of learned men, is an individual being, an intelligent agent, who is fingular, and fubfifts, lives, fpeaks, understands, acts, and works-and fuch is the Holy Ghoft. Nor is there a diftinct personal character but what the holy fcriptures apply to him;-fuch as I, me, bim, he, his, thou. As for inftance, Separate ME Barnabas and Saul for the work whereunto I have called them. And when HE is come HE fhall guide you into all truth: Again, I will send you a comforter, whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth HIM not, neither knoweth him; but ye know HIM,
HE dwelleth with you, and shall be in you. Again, Is the Spirit of the Lord ftraitened? Are thefe HIS doings? Again, Whither fball I go from thy Spirit, or whither, fhall I flee from thy prefence? If I go up into heaven,: THOU art there. Sure I am that these personal characters cannot be applied to a name, or to a quality in God, or to an influence from him, or to an accident, or to a tranfient impreffion; much less to a, nonentity. It is true, that perfonal characters, and perfonal actions, are fometimes afcribed to things inanimate; as, The trees went forth to choose themfelves a king, and invited the vine and the olive to reign over. them, who refused; and the bramble bid them put them-. felves under bis fhadow. The red fea alfo is reprefented as feeing and fleeing. The floods lift up their bands on high, and the little bills fkip like lambs. Yet we have no voice from any of these, only dumb figns at beft; thefe all wanted perfons to speak for them. Jotham fpeaks for the trees and the bramble; Habakkuk fpeaks the motions of the fea, and David the actions of the little hills. But the Holy Spirit wants none to fpeak for him; he can fpeak of himself, and for himself. He spoke in Adam, giving names to all creatures. He spoke to PhilipGo near, and join thyself to this chariot. He spoke to Peter-The Spirit faid unto him, Behold, three men feek thee; arife, therefore, and get thee down, and ga with them, nothing doubting. The Spirit faid, Separate me Barnabas and Saul. Bleffed are the dead which die in the Lord: Yea, faith the Spirit, that they may B 3 reft
refi from their labours, and their works do follow them. The Holy Spirit not only fpeaks; but all that have ever spoken to any good purpose have been taught to speak by him; he brings the things to their minds, puts words in their mouths, and teaches them how to pronounce them. Which things alfo we speak, not in the words which man's wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghoft teacheth. 1 Cor. ii. 13. The Spirit put a word in Balaam's mouth, and bade him speak thus and thus; and the apostles fpake as the Spirit gave them utterance. He not only speaks to the faints, and in them, but he teaches us in fome measure to difcern between those whom he teaches to speak, and thofe who follow their own fpirit, and speak a vision out of their own heart, and not out of the mouth of the Lord. And how evident this is in all who write or speak of divine things without the Spirit's teaching! What flagrant errors, felf-contradictions, inconfiftencies, confufion, and darkening of counfel, doth appear! Inftead of making rough places plain, and crooked things flraight, they make the plaineft places rough, and the ftraightest things crooked; and, instead of going through the gates, and removing the ftumbling blocks, and cafting up the high-way, they grope like the blind for the wall, cause many to stumble at the law, and deftroy the way of our paths. And, if at any time any of them appear to be tolerably found in the letter, yet the deep things of the text, the unctuous matter of it, or the choice experience of the holy penmen that