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witness with their spirits that they are the children of God," be infallibly assured that they are in the estate of grace, and shall persevere therein unto salvation."
Q. 81. Are all true believers at all times assured of their present being in the estate of grace, and that they shall be saved?
A. Assurance of grace and salvation not being of the essence of faith, true believers may wait long before they obtain it; and,
dwell in him, and he in us, because he hath given us of his Spirit. And we have known and believed the love that God hath to us. God is love; and he that dwelleth in love, dwelleth in God, and God in him. 1 John iii. 14, 18, 19, 21, 24. We know that we have passed from death unto life, because we love the brethren.-Let us not love in word, neither in tongue, but in deed and in truth. And hereby we know that we are of the truth, and shall assure our hearts before him.-Beloved, if our heart condemn us not, then have we confidence toward God.-And he that keepeth his commandments, dwelleth in him, and he in him. And hereby we know that he abideth in us, by the Spirit which he hath given us.
m Rom. viii. 16. The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God.
n 1 John v. 13. These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life.
Eph. i. 13. In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also, after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that Holy Spirit of promise.
p Isa. 1. 10. Who is among you that feareth the Lord, that obeyeth the voice of his servant, that walketh in darkness, and hath no light? let him trust in the name of the Lord, and stay upon his God. Psa. lxxxviii. throughout.
after the enjoyment thereof, may have it weakened and intermitted, through manifold distempers, sins, temptations, and desertions;" yet are they never left without such a presence and support of the Spirit of God, as keeps them from sinking into utter despair.
Q. 82. What is the communion in glory which the members of the invisible church have with Christ?
A. The communion in glory, which the members of the invisible church have with Christ, is in this life," immediately after death, and at last perfected at the resurrection and day of judgment."
4 Psa. lxxvii. 1 to 12. Will the Lord cast off for ever? and will he be favourable no more? Is his mercy clean gone for ever? doth his promise fail for evermore? Hath God forgotten to be gracious? hath he in anger shut up his tender mercies? &c. Cant. v. 2, 3, 6. I sleepI have put off my coat; how shall I put it on ?-My beloved had withdrawn himself, and was gone; my soul failed when he spake: I sought him, but I could not find him; I called him but he gave me no answer. Psa. xxxi. 22. For I said in my haste, I am cut off from before thine eyes. Psa. xxx. 6, 7, and li. 8, 12.
r Job xiii. 15. Though he slay me, yet will I trust in him. Psa. lxxiii. 13, 14, 15, 23. Nevertheless I am continually with thee; thou hast holden me by my right hand. 1 John iii. 9. Isa. liv. 7 to 11.
2 Cor. iii. 18. But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image, from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord.
t Luke xxiii. 43. And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, To-day shalt thou be with me in paradise.
" 1 Thess. iv. 17. Then we which are alive and
Q. 83. What is the communion in glory with Christ, which the members of the invisible church enjoy in this life?
A. The members of the invisible church have communicated to them, in this life, the first-fruits of glory with Christ, as they are members of him their head, and so in him are interested in that glory which he is fully possessed of; and as an earnest thereof, enjoy the sense of God's love," peace of conscience, joy in the Holy Ghost, and hope of glory.* As, on the contrary, sense of God's revenging wrath, horror of conscience, and a fearful expectation of judgment, are to the wicked the beginning of the torments, which they shall endure after death."
remain, shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.
▾ Eph. ii. 5, 6. Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ;—and hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places, in Christ Jesus.
Rom. v. 5. And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts, by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us. 2 Cor. i. 22. Who hath also sealed us, and given the earnest of the Spirit in our hearts.
* Rom. v. 1, 2. Therefore, being justified by faith, we have peace with God, through our Lord Jesus Christ: by whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God. Rom. xiv. 17. For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink; but righteousness and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost. Gen. iv. 13. And Cain said unto the Lord, My pun ishment is greater than I can bear. Matt. xxvii. 4.-1
Q. 84. Shall all men die?
A. Death being threatened as the wages of sin, it is appointed unto all men once to die;" for that all have sinned."
Q. 85. Death being the wages of sin, why are not the righteous delivered from death, seeing all their sins are forgiven in Christ?
A. The righteous shall be delivered from death itself at the last day, and even in death are delivered from the sting and curse of it; so that although they die, yet it is out of God's love, to free them perfectly from sin and misery, and to make them capable of fur
have sinned, in that I have betrayed the innocent blood. Heb. x. 27. But a certain fearful looking for of judgment and fiery indignation, which shall devour the adversaries, Mark ix. 44. Where their worm dieth not, and the fire is not quenched. Rom. ii. 9. Rom. vi. 23.
a Heb. ix. 27. to die.
For the wages of sin is death.
b Rom. v. 12.
So death passed upon all men, for that
all have sinned.
c 1 Cor. xv. 26, 55, 56, 57. The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death.-O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory? The sting of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the law. But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory, through our Lord Jesus Christ. Heb. ii. 15.
d Isa. lvii. 1, 2. The righteous is taken away from the evil to come. He shall enter into peace: they shall rest in their beds. 2 Kings xxii. 20. Behold, therefore, I will gather thee unto thy fathers, and thou shalt be gathered into thy grave in peace: and thine eyes shall not see all the evil which I will bring upon this place.
Rev. xiv. 13. Blessed are the dead which die in the Lord from henceforth: yea, saith the Spirit, that they
ther communion with Christ in glory, which they then enter, upon.
Q. 86. What is the communion in glory with Christ, which the members of the invisible church enjoy immediatety after death.
A. The communion in glory with Christ, which the members of the invisible church enjoy immediately after death, is in that their souls are then made perfect in holiness, and received into the highest heavens," where they behold the face of God in light and glory;" waiting for the full redemption of their bodies, which even in death continue united to Christ, and rest in their graves as in their
may rest from their labours; and their works do follow them. Eph. v. 27. f Luke xxiii. 43. And Jesus said unto him, Verily, I say unto thee, To-day shalt thou be with me in paradise. Phil. i. 23. For I am in a strait betwixt two, having a desire to depart, and to be with Christ; which is far better.
Heb. xii. 23. To the general assembly and church of the first-born, which are written in heaven, and to God the Judge of all, and to the spirits of just men made perfect. 1 John iii. 2. Eph. v. 27.
h 2 Cor. v. 1, 6, 8. nacle were dissolved, not made with hands,
i 1 John iii. 2. But we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is. 1 Cor. xiii. 12. Now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face. Rev. xxii. 4, 5. Matt.
If our earthly house of this taberwe have a building of God, an house eternal in the heavens, &c.
Rom. viii. 23. Waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body. Psa. xvi. 9. My flesh also shall rest in hope.
* 1 Thess. iv. 14. For if we believe that Jesus died,