The word sincerity signifies uprightness and truth. Sincerity is opposed to double mindfulness, when the sentiments of the heart are contrary to the language of the month. The language of Baalam in blessing the Israelites was quite the reverse of his heart— 부산오피 he would most gladly have cursed them for the wages of iniquity; and, like Joab who took Abner aside to speak quietly to him but smote him under the fifth rib that he died; and like Judas, with “Hail master,” and kissed him and betrayed him into the hands of his enemies. But while this is the case with the hypocrite, God has blest his own children as they are regenerated with sincerity of principle, sincerity of pursuit, and in their general deportment sincerity of action. This is the genuine work of the Holy Spirit, the Lord and giver of life, who is well acquainted with the persons of God’s elect, who were chosen in Christ before the foundation of the world, and predestinated to the adoption of sons—to know their sonship in this world, and to be publicly owned by their ever adorable Father before assembled worlds—eternally united to Christ as the Great Head of the p. 19Church, viewed in him complete; and according to the well ordered covenant of grace, brought into a state of pardon, a state of peace and reconciliation, a state of justification and acceptance with God in Christ, by Christ, through Christ, and for Christ. The ever-adorable most holy God the Spirit graciously undertook to be their teacher, to take eternal possession of them, to be in them as a well of water springing up to eternal life—illuminating their minds, quickening their souls with a principle of life, subduing their sins, shewing them the salvation that there is in Christ, and at times giving them power to enjoy it—this holy principle which makes its possessor sincere is sometimes denominated faith, and it is faith unfeigned—sometimes it is called love, and it is love without dissimulation; and let the believer be in whatever frame he may, he is still blessed with these in their degree—these produce humble fear, holy desires, great anxiety, godly sorrow, fervent breathings, self abasement, spiritual meekness, holy obedience, love to all the truth and to those that love it—and if a person is in possession of these, he is truly made by grace sincere. What he is as a sinner he well knows, nor will ever alter his opinion of himself. Many deluded ones may fancy their sinful nature is getting better, but while such rise in awful pride, the sincere believer sinks lower and lower in his own estimation in proportion as his spiritual knowledge increases. Knowledge and humility are twins in the believer’s mind, and those who are thus favoured can never be barren—Song iv. 2. 대구오피 In a state of nature God’s elect in general differ nothing from the greatest reprobate neither in principle nor conduct—they are enemies, ungodly, proud, boasters, haters, malicious and slaves to Satan, the flesh, the world and sin. Of this the Holy Spirit convinces them— 대전오피 of this they are ashamed—for p. 20this they feel condemned by the holy law of God—from this they are turned, and being convinced they feel their need of a Saviour, a surety, a better righteousness than their own, this makes them sincere in their pursuits. To such as these the Lord speaks—“Hearken unto me ye that follow after righteousness, ye that seek the Lord.” And as they follow after righteousness so they are said to follow holiness, to follow the Lamb who is both the righteousness and the holiness of his church, and are made sincere by grace. In this pursuit they will not rest. To such as these the gospel invitation is given, even to the poor, who are convinced that they are not able to pay the demands of the law halt, who through temptation, unbelief, and erroneous characters, waver in their minds about some of the great truths of God—lame and maimed feel their own weakness, helplessness, wounded in spirit, nor can they get on in the divine life—blind about their interest in Christ for a season. Such are those who sincerely know themselves to be what God declares have a right to all the precious privileges of the gospel. And it is such as these the Lord has pronounced blessed in his sermon on the mount in eight particulars; as the poor in spirit emptied of all supposed goodness in themselves, mourning in mind on account of sin and abused goodness—meek, humble, docile, teachable, hungry and thirsty, which includes sensations of pain, desire and pursuit—merciful to the souls, bodies, and names of others—pure in heart by receiving the atonement and by the indwelling of the spirit— 청주오피 and the word peace-makers in the church—loving to those who belong to God—hating variance, strife, and pride, persecuted for imputed and imparted righteousness-sake, for decidedness in the cause of Christ—though reviled, yet falsely, such have their reward in heavenly smiles now and to all eternity in a p. 21better world—these are those who are sincere—chastened, tempted, tossed, dejected, broken in nature by the fall, and in heart by grace, sorrowing on account of sin and over a suffering Saviour. To those who are so sincerely tried the Saviour opened his commission in the synagogue, taking his sweet text from Isaiah—“The spirit of the Lord God is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the broken-hearted, to preach deliverance to captives and the opening of the prison doors to those that are bound, to set at liberty those that are bruised, to comfort all that mourn.” These are characters to whom Christ can only be precious—the whole in their own estimation need him not. I came not to call such but sinners to repentance; and being called into a state of repentance, that grace will flow sweetly when love, mercy and goodness is felt. This is the Holy Spirit’s description of those that are sincere. He has condescended to exhibit their likeness, that we may see our own. This is an act of stupendous condescension; and taking this scriptural view, we can bless the grace that has made us to differ from the Pharisee and the hypocrite. Oh, to grace how great a debtor! Daily I rejoice to be—and in the fine language of the communion of the church of England, would daily pray—

Almighty God, unto whom all hearts be open, all desires known, and from whom no secrets are hid, cleanse the thoughts of our hearts by the inspiration of thy Holy Spirit, that we may perfectly (sincerely) love thee, and worthily magnify thy holy name, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. Every one that God has made honest in heart can say amen to this prayer.