Rejecting Christ is a trampling underfoot the authority of God in every one of the ten commandments

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Erskinecrppped.jpg To the next thing proposed, namely, to offer some motives and considerations to urge you to the receiving of Christ. If any here would know what is that star, by which they may be led to the place where the Lord Jesus lies? Why, it is just this everlasting gospel; it points out Christ, saying, Behold the Lamb of God. There are but two great requests that heaven makes to us all by this glorious gospel: the first request is to all Christless persons whatsoever, that hear this gospel, viz. That they receive Christ Jesus the Lord. The second is to all Christians that have received him, viz. That they walk in him: As ye have received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk ye in him. Now, you would know beforehand, that no motive will move you, no argument will persuade you to receive Christ, unless it be backed with the almighty power of God: and therefore if you think salvation a business worth your while, O send up an ejaculatory [exclamatory] prayer to heaven, that God would make this gospel, the power of God to your salvation, through Jesus Christ. We are now calling you in the name of the great and eternal God, to believe in his Son Jesus Christ, and receive him, so as you may walk in him, till you come to walk with him in white among the redeemed above; and there is this general motive, that should be instead of a thousand to you all; and which, if duly regarded, there would be no need of any more; and that is, the supreme authority of God the Father is interposed in this matter: For, this is his commandment, that we should believe on the name of his Son Jesus Christ (1 John 3:23).

And, shall we think nothing to trample upon the authority, and contemn the command of that God, who can command us to hell in a moment? Here God sums up all the ten commands, as it were, into one; and fays, if you obey this, you obey all; if you break this, you break all: the man that doth not believe in the Son of God, he breaks both the tables of the law at one dash; and violates every precept of the law in the most dreadful manner. You have heard sometimes, how the sin of Adam in eating the forbidden fruit, was at once a breach of all the ten commands. But do you consider, that your unbelief in not receiving Christ, is a trampling underfoot the authority of God in every one of these commands, and that in the most grievous manner?

—[First] The man that receiveth not Christ, he rejecteth God himself as his God; for he is not the God of any man, neither will be, but in Christ.

—[Second] The man that receives not Christ, all his worship is at best but idolatry and superstition; for God cannot be worshipped acceptably any other way than in Christ, who is the image of the invisible God.

—[Third] The rejecter of Christ is a profaner of the name of God; for God's name is in him: and it is in him especially that God maketh himself known.

—[Fourth] The man that doth not receive Christ, he cannot sanctify the Sabbath-day, nor hallow it; for all the days of his life, wherein he lives without Christ, are unholy days; his whole time is a sinful time.

—[Fifth] The man in this case is disobedient to his heavenly Parent, dishonors his heavenly Father; and so can never put due respect upon earthly parents.

—[Sixth] He kills his own soul, and crucifies the Lord of glory afresh, and so can never have a right love to man.

—[Seventh] He is guilty of the grossest spiritual adultery, in departing from the Lord, and cannot be otherwise clean.

—[Eighth] He steals and robs God of his glory, so cannot in other respects be altogether innocent.

—[Ninth] He bears false witness against God, by making God a liar, and rejecting the testimony that God gives concerning his Son; and having so little regard to God's name, he cannot have much for his neighbor’s.

—[Tenth] And, finally, he is guilty of covetousness, which is idolatry, and that of the most atrocious nature; for he through unbelief and rejecting of Christ as a Savior, and thinking of salvation by his own means, doth covet that glory and honor which is only due to God and Christ, to be ascribed to himself: self is his God, and self-righteousness is his Christ; and what will he not covet, who covets to be in God's room?

Thus the sin of unbelief, in rejecting of Christ, doth at one stroke dash the whole commands of God to pieces; and therefore, no wonder that this be his great command, that we believe in the name of his Son: seeing also that, by receiving him, we fulfill the whole law, namely, by receiving him for our righteousness and sanctification; for in receiving him for our righteousness, we fulfill the law as a covenant, and that personally in him who hath yielded perfect obedience in our room, and paid the penalty also for its violation; and in receiving him for our sanctification, we fulfill the law as a rule by a perfection of parts, through his sanctifying Spirit in us, which goes on to a perfection of degrees in heaven. Therefore, I say, when we reject Christ, we reject the great command of God, and contemn his authority in the most signal instance. Know then that by the authority of the eternal God, you are obliged to believe; and let this general motive be in the room of all.

[Sermon eight of a series of eight sermons on Colossians 2:6: As ye have received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk ye in him, entitled Gospel-principle the foundation of Gospel-practice; or, The great duty of receiving Christ and walking in him, opened. “This subject was entered upon on a thanksgiving-day, after the celebration of the sacrament of the Lord's supper at Kinglassie; and afterwards finished in a series of discourses in his own church in Dunfermline in the year 1724.” Practical Works, 2vols. folio (Glasgow: Robert Urie, 1754, 1755), 1. 235–236. Another version of this sermon can be found online:

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