Encouragements to faith Drawn from severall engagements both of Gods Christs heart to receive pardon sinners. By Tho: Goodwin, B.D.
Goodwin, Thomas, 1600-1680.

Vse.

WHat should the consideration of these things work in our hearts, but what the scope of the text it self puts men upon, even that they would come in unto Christ, and beleeve on him, and give up their souls unto him? He that beleeves shall in no wise be cast out. As Christ therefore is willing: so should we, Page  33 be a willing people. That which keepes men off, is, that they know not Christs minde and heart, think it not to be an indifferent thing to him whether you beleeve, or no; as if he came into the world to do this duty of dying for sinners, singly in obedience to his Fa∣ther, so that men might be rendred savable if they will: and that however, if they will not, he yet hath enough to satisfie and quiet himself with, even this that he shall be glorified in what he hath done, though few or none of the sons of men be saved. It is a pre∣judiciall doctrine this, to the salvation of men, and derogatory to Christs free love. What, do we think that Jesus Christ is gone to heaven, there to complaine unto Angels of the unkindnesse and hardnes of mens hearts, that will not turne to him notwithstand∣ing he hath done so much, and to tell what he had done for them, and what they would not be perswaded to do for themselves; and that so he can sufficiently please himself with such just complaints? no surely; our effectuall salvation concernes him more then so: and his heart is more fully bent upon it then thus to leave it, of what he hath bought he will lose nothing. The truth is, he is more glad of us then we can be of him. The Father of the Prodigall was the forwarder of the two to that joyfull meeting. Hast thou a minde? he that came down from Heaven (as himself saith, in the text) to dye for thee, will meet thee more then half way (as the prodigals father is said to do) by his spirit; he will send him from Heaven to thee, and at the latter day himself will come again to fetch thee and receive thee to himself. If among the Angels in Heaven there be joy at the conversion of a sinner, how much more joy is there in Christs heart? If there be joy in the bed chamber men (as Iohn speakes) what joy is there in the bridgrooms hearts? or if among the standers by, when a man∣child is borne into the world, how much more doth the mother that was in travaile for it (as Christs soul was,) how much more doth she rejoyce? O therefore come in unto him. If you knew his heart you would. As they that crucified him knew him not, so neither do those who beleeve not in him. If you had been on earth with him, or if he were now here, and had this day preacht these things unto you, and uttered these his own desires, and long∣ings after you; how would you in troopes go all thronging after him when the Sermon were done, and each of you come about him 〈◊…〉 that had diseases did) and beseech him to pardon and save Page  34 you; and not leave him till you have obtained some word of com∣fort and favour from him! Let me tell you, he had preacht this day, but that he had other busines to do for you in Heaven, where he is now praying and intereceding for you, even when you are sin∣ning; (as on earth we see he did for the Jews when they were a crucifying him.) Now because he could not for this other busines come himself, he therefore sends us his Ambassadours, and we in Christ stead do beseech you; and it is as if Christ by us did be∣seech you: and we preach but such things as were first spoken by the Lord himselfe, (as it in Heb. 2.) And he sends his spirit, and con∣tinues to give gifts unto men to this very day: and in all these respects, when ever the Gospel is preacht, he is said to spek from heaven, Refuse not him that speaks from heaven, Heb. 12. 23. And though you have not his bodily presence as they had who heard himselfe preach here on earth; yet you may by faith have as free an accesse unto him, and know as surely that he heares you, as if he were in the same roome with you. Retire there∣fore into your closet, and treat with him in private, and there presse these things on him; say them all over again unto himself, and ask him if they be not true: get the match struck up between thy soule & him; which if once made, will never be undone again. Say unto him, Lord, why may it not be made up now? Only let me adde this; see you come not to him without a wedding-garment, and wedding-affections. Take up a resolution to love him. For if thou comest to him, what dost thou come for? pardon of sins? and what is it in him that must procure that? his having dyed for thee; that was it. And what was it that moved him to die? an infinite love; such a love, as were the thing yet to be done, he would certain∣ly do it, and die to satisfie God for thee. Now then, seeing he hath already done it out of such a love with what face canst thou ask pardon of him, as the effect of such a love, and not love him again, and obey him in all things? But to make short work with you, know this; that if thou wilt not come in to him, thou wilt be dam∣ned. So saith Christ, He that beleeves shall be saved; but he that be∣leeves not shall be damned. And I could tell you another, and as large a story of Christs wrath against those that refuse him, as I have told you of his love: The Lamb can be angry; for he is a Li∣on also, O consider this therefore, lest he teare you in pieces, and th••… be none to deliver you.