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holy and good heart; in those Christian virtues and graces, which are not subject to corruption.
III, 6 Whose daughters ye are, as long as ye do well, and are not afraid with any amazement. Whose daughters ye are, if ye follow her example in well doing, boldly and constantly; and not in those weak fears, whereto she yielded, and was drawn into inconvenience and dissimulation thereby : I know your sex is subject, by reason of the infirmity of it, to manifold fears and suspicions, as if, by the submissive yieldance unto your husbands, ye should expose you to their tyranny and contempt; but do ye that, which your place and duty requireth, and be not affrighted and disquieted with these doubts and distrusts, leaving the ordering of all events to the wisdom and providence of God.
III. 7 Giving honour unto the wife, as unto the weaker vessel. Giving unto them all tender and due respects, as those towards whom, by reason of the weakness of their sex, all gentle and favourable usage is required of you.
III. 15 But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts : and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear. But give ye unto God, in your hearts, that honour which is due unto him in trusting to his promises, and relying upon bis providence, by a stedfast confidence and reposition: and, since ye live amongst heathens and professed enemies to the Gospel, be not ye daunted with their oppositions and persecutions; but be ready, when ye are thereunto duly called, to make profession of that true faith and religion, which ye have received; but let not this be done in a turbulent and seditious manner, but with all meekness of spirit, and reverence to that authority whereby ye are called thereunto.
III. 18 Being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit : Being put to death in bis human body, in regard of the separation of his soul therefrom, for a time; but being quickened and raised up to an immortal life, by the power of his Divine Spirit or Deity:
III. 19 By which also he went and preached unto the spirits in prison; By the power of which Divine Spirit of his, long before his manifestation in the flesh, he came to the old world ; and, by the mouth of Noah, that preacher of righteousness, spake to them, whose. spirits are now fast prisoned in hell; * III. 20 Which sometime were disobedient, when once the longsuffering of God waited in the days of Noah, while the urk was a preparing Which were, in their life time, wicked and disobedient to his boly counsels ; when the patient longsuffering of God gave a large respite to them for their repentance and conversion, even all the while that the Ark was preparing by Noah. Compare this with chap. iv. verse 6.
III. 21 The like figure whereunto even baptism doth also nos save us (not the putting away of the filth of the flesh, but the arswer of a good conscience toward God,) by the resurrection of Jesus Christ. Answerable unto which preservation of the eight persons in Noah's family by water, is the benefit which we receive by baptism: which doth also now save us, by and in applying unto us the power of the Resurrection of Jesus Christ; and becomes effectual unto us, not in respect of the outward element which only washeth off the filth of the flesh, but in respect of the inward efficacy of the grace thereby represented and exhibited, whereby the conscience is both quieted and assured of pardon and favour, and is thereupon enabled to treat for and expect mercy from God and reconciliation with him.
IV. i Forasmuch then as Christ hath suffered for us in the flesk, arm yourselves likewise with the same mind : for he that hath suffered in the flesh hath ceased from sin ; Forasmuch as Christ bath suffered death in his human nature, do ye labour to conform yourselves to Christ herein ; and think this seriously with yourselves, that he, who will be like unto Christ in his death and passion which he endured in the flesh, must be mortified in and to the corrupt desires of the flesh, and must cease from those sins which are the actions of a carnal and unregenerate life;
IV. 2 That he no longer should live the rest of his time in the Nesh to the lusts of men, but to the will of God. He must have notbing to do with his wonted corruptions ; neither must lead the rest of his life, which he hath to spend here below, according to the sinful lusts of carnal men, but according to the holy will of God.
IV. 6 For this cause was the gospel preached also to them that are dead, that they might be judged according to men in the flesk, but live according to God in the spirit. For, for this cause was the Gospel preached, of old, to those which are long since dead, being swept away by the Deluge; that, howsoever they were, in the sight and construction of men, seized on by the fearful judgment of God, yet that some of them, being wrought upon by that word of his, and brought to a sudden repentance, might have their souls saved.
IV. 8 For charity shall cover the multitude of sins. For true charity, if it be in us, will hide a multitude of those sins and infirmities, which are in our brethren.
IV. 11 If any man speak, let him speak as the oracles of God. If any man be called, by God, to speak publicly, as his messenger or minister to his people, let him so deliver that word which he brings, as may become the holiness and majesty of the Oracles of God.
IV. 12 Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you.
Beloved, let it not seem strange and uncouth to you, that there is a fire of persecution begun to be kindled among you, for the profession of the Gospel ; which is intended by God, for the trial of your faith and constancy.
IV. 14 For the Spirit of glory and of God resteth upon you. For the Spirit of God, which always brings glory and happiness with it, resteth upon you ; and dotb, by this means, give you good evidence of his abiding in you.
IV, 17 For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God: and if it first begin at us, what shall the end be of them that obey not the gospel of God ? For the time is come, wherein, according to the prediction of the prophet, judgment must begin at the sanctuary or house of God; which is his Church: the wisdom of God hath thought fit, by the cruel hands of wicked men, to exercise the patience and faith of his dearest children; and, if he begin with these sharp afflictions upon us, which are tenderly beloved and respected of him, what intolerable punishments hath he provided, and will be sure to infict upon those, that are wilfully and rebelliously disobedient to the Gospel of God!
IV. 18 And if the righteous scarcely be saved, where shall the ungodly and the sinner appear ? And, if the most righteous and dearest of all God's children shall not escape a very sore and severe trial of chastisement, such, as if they were left to their own strength, were enough to overlay and miscarry them, what shall then become of the wicked and ungodly? how shall it be possible for them to escape utter confusion?
V. 1 The elders which are anong you I exhort, who am also an elder, and a witness of the sufferings of Christ. Those, that are the pastors or spiritual overseers of the Church amongst you, I do exhort, who am also a partner with them of the same holy calling, and an eye-witness of all those bitter sufferings of Christ, both in his life and in his death.
V, 3 Neither as being lords over God's heritage, Not proudly and tyrannically taking upon them to domineer over the faith of God's people; or, in an overly and imperious manner, tyrannizing over the Church, which is the heritage of God.
V. 13 The church that is at Babylon, elected together with you, saluteth you; and so doth Marcus my son. The Church of God, consisting of those co-elect members of Christ (whether in the properly-called Babylon, which is in Egypt, or the mystical Babylon, which is Rome) salute you.
I. i That hate obtained like precious faith with us through the righteousness of God and our Saviour Jesus Christ. Who have received the gift of a true and lively faith, which is equally precious wheresoever it is in any of the elect, through the merits of Jesus Christ, who is our God and Saviour.
I. 4 Whereby are given unto us erceeding great and precious pro. mises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, hating escaped the corruption that is in the world through łust. By which Christ and by the knowledge of him, are conveyed unto us exceedingly great and precious blessings and graces, such as he had formerly promised to us believers; that by these we might be made partakers of those divine qualities of the soul, viz. of wisdom, goodness, holiness, whereby we resemble that God, alcording to whose image we were created; having been delivered and freed from that corruption, which aboundeth in worldly men, through their sinful lusts.
I. 9 But he that lacketh these things is blind, and cannot see afer off, and hath forgotten that he was purged from his old sins. But he, that lacketh these graces, is at the least purblind; not see. ing heavenly things which are afar off, but earthly things only wbich are near at hand: having forgotten even the very first and main principles of Christianity; and namely this, that they were washed from their old sins by the laver of regeneration ; persisting wilfully in those evils, as if they had never been done away,
I. 10 Wherefore the rather, brethren, gide diligence to make your calling and election sure: for if ye do these things, ye shall never fall. Wherefore do ye so much more studiously and earnestly labour to attain unto good assurance in your souls, (both of your effectual calling in time, and of your eternal election to life before all times, by believing, and by well doing: for, if ye do thus carefully and conscionably endeavour yourselves, it is a firm argument of the grace and mercy of God, so upholding you, that ye shall never utterly fall from him.
1. i5 Moreover I will endeavour that ye may be able after my de. cease to have these things always in remembrance. Moreover I will take order while I live, both by my utmost ended vours upon all occasions, and by these monuments which I shall leave behind me, so to settle the remembrance of these things m you, that, after my decease, ye may not forget them, but may think of them effectually.
I. 19 We have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto y do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your hearts: But, besides our own testimony, we have that evidence, which ye ase wont to account more certain than all the report of preses
witnesses, even the clear word of the ancient prophets, foretelling the truth of all events concerning Christ; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, and give all due respect; regarding it, as a candle that shines in a dark room, till a greater light arise unto you; that is, until the bright and glorious Gospel, which is as the daystar and the morning light of divine truth, be fully manifested unto you; as that, wherein all those prophetical predictions appear to be perfectly accomplished :
I. 20 Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation. Presupposing first, and laying this sure ground, that the exposition of the prophetical predictions of the Holy Scriptures may not be framed and ruled according to the private conceit of the reader, but by the gracious revelation of the Holy Ghost, and those meet helps which God hath ordinarily left unto his Church.
I. 21 For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost. For, there must be the same authority for the interpreting of Scriptures, which was in the giving and delivering of them: now, those holy prophecies came not in old time from the device of man's brains, neither did they deliver their own inventions; but those sacred persons, which were sent by God on his messages to the Church, spake as they were inspired by the Holy Ghost, and wrote only those words which were put into them by God him, self.
11. 1 Even denying the Lord that bought them. Even denying that gracious Lord and Saviour, who hath not stuck to shed his most precious blood, for the redemption of mankind.
II. 3 And through covetousness shall they with feigned words make merchandise of you: whose judgment now of a long time lingereth not, and their damination slumbereth not. And, as crafty merchants are wont, with many fair and glozing words, to deceive the buyer; so do they, in a covetous desire and aim at their own advantage, go about with feigned pretences and plausible words to make merchandise of you; whose just judgment and fearful damnation, which hath been of old ordained for them and denounced against them, is not delayed and slackened, for one moment, beyond the time limited to their due punishment.
II, 4 And delivered them into chains of darkness, to be reserved. unto judgment. And delivered them up into that dungeon of hell, to be reserved there, in horrible darkness, until the day of the Last Judgment, wherein they shall receive the sentence and execution of their full torment.
II. 11 Whereas angels, which are greater in power and might, bring not railing accusation against them before the Lord, Whereas, the good angels of God, who are greater in power and might than any mortal creature, and therefore might seem privi. leged to take more liberty unto themselves, yet, when they have ap