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who were once impure Gentiles, As ye have yielded your members fervants to uncleanness, and to iniquity unto iniquity; even fo now yield your members fervants to righteousness unto holiness, Rom. 6. 19. That now being made free from fin, and become fervants to God, ye may have your fruit unto holiness, ver. 22. and that this fruit may be the greater because of the former barrennefs and unfruitfulness which we were guilty of. He that has neglected any neceflary Duty, and fo is guilty of a Sin of Omiffion, is bound to amend and repent of that as much as of any other Sin, and fo Repentance will oblige him to the practice of all manner of Vertue, as well as the quitting and abandoning of all manner of Sin. The true Penitent muft not only pluck up all the Habits of Sin in his Soul, and weed out all thofe venemous feeds of Wickedness that have grown up into finful practices, but he must have all manner of Vertue planted in his Heart, and he must bring forth the fruits of his Repentance in an univerfal Goodnefs and Holinefs of Life; and unless it does fo, it is not as I fhall fhow you, true and perfect Repentance, because nothing

nothing else can reftore the Mind to a foundness and a good state. And Repentance is like a recovery of Health after Sickness. The difeafe must be thoroughly got off, the fickly matter must be discharged, the illness must be cured and removed, and when that is done, the Patient muft get his former ftrength, and be able to perform all the proper and vital operations, and till he does this we cannot say he is well So till a Sinner has wholly got rid of his past Sins, and has utterly relinquifh'd and forfaken them, till he has purged them all out by Repentance, and has brought himself, by the Grace of God, to fuch a Spiritual ftrength and foundness, as to perform the proper duties and operations of the new life, and to practice thofe Vertues which were contrary to his former Vices, he cannot be faid to be recovered to a state of Health and Soundnefs, and true Repentance. He may be under a method of Cure indeed, as a fick Man is under a course of Phyfick, and in fome fair hopes and a likely way of recovery before this, and this is often called Repentance, and 'tis a part of it but not the whole :


But the great work is not done, nor is his Repentance finifh'd and perfected till he is come to this, to for fake every former Sin, and practice the contrary Vertue. How long he is to do this, I fhall not determine, as I cannot tell how long a Man must be free from a Difeafe before he is well, and how much time exactly there must be between a ftate of Sickness and that of Health. 'Tis hard to fix the indivi fible point between those two states, and fo it is between a state of Sin and a perfect Repentance of it; but all Men can ftill know pretty easily when -they are well, and fo they may by this fure mark when they have truly and fully Repented, namely, when they have thus braught forth the fruits of repentance, Matth. 3. 8. Repent ance is not to be known, neither is it to be counted true, or at least perfect without thofe : Thofe Fruits of it indeed are not different from the thing it felf, they are not only figns, and outward marks and indications of it, as the Fruit of a Tree is a fign that the Tree is alive, for here the Tree would not be alive at all, if it were without that Fruit. Thefe are not then only a fign that his Repentance

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is true; but they are like our Breath,
which is not only a fign that we are
alive, but that very thing by which we
live. True and perfect Repentance con-
fifts in those,and is never without them;
as I fhall fhew by confidering what an
imperfect thing all the Repentance is
which is done in a Mans Mind, without
effect upon
any upon his Life and Actions.

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Mental Repentance imperfect without


LL that Sorrow and Trouble for

Sin which a Sinner feels in his own Soul, all that Conviction and Condemnation of his ill ftate and fad condition, by reafon of his paft Sins when he reflects upon them, and all thofe Vows, and Purposes and Refolutions of leav ing his Sins, and living better hereafter, though they are good fymptoms and good beginnings of Repentance, yet if they go no further, and do not bring forth the meet fruits of Repentance, they are far from being perfect.or indeed true Repentance*: For all these may be in moft Sinners yet they continue ftill in their Sins, and be never

* Μετανοίας όρος ἐτὸ έναν μόνον ἐπὶ αμαρ τίαις, ἀλλὰ καὶ τὸ φάγων ταύτας καὶ των τέτων ὁδὸν Σποτρέφες καὶ τὰ ἐναντίαν divgr. Incod. is Ila. 30.


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the better for them in their lives: And there are very few Sinners, I believe, that have not thefe now and then in their Minds, and do not fometimes repent after this fafnion; they are often convinced of their evil courses, and their Confciences accufe them for their Sins, and they find a great deal. of trouble and difquiet in themselves upon the account of them, and they cannot but look back upon what they have done with forrow and trouble, and with fome kind of dread and fear; and when they bethink themselves they know they are in a bad ftate, and they cannot but be melancholly and diffatisfied with themselves, and have fome faint wishes that they had done otherwife, and fome thort and ineffe&tual purposes and refolutions to live otherwife fometime hereafter, and to become better at fome convenient feafon, but before that comes, the Temp tation is again offered, the Sin and the Company invites, the melancholly and the thoughtful mood is gone off, the dark and gloomy, and cloudy weather, that hung over his Soul is cleared up and difperfed, and the Man falls to his Sins as fresh and as briskly as D 2


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