We Have Peace With God
Dated June, 1742 or 3. From Grosart’s “Unpublished Writings.”
... we have peace with God.
Peace with God
The nature of it.
How it is brought to pass.
The distinguishing marks of it.
The benefits of it.
The course that should be taken in order to it.
The nature of it.
I would observe that we ought to distinguish between that peace which is real
and [which is] sensible.
The one consists in the
state of the soul: the other in the sense of the soul. The one is the foundation
of the other. That peace of God which is real or that consists in the state of
the soul is the ground of that which consists in its sensation or apprehension.
Both are called in Scripture by the name of PEACE; and are represented as the
peculiar privileges of God’s saints. And therefore I will something very
briefly consider the nature of each.
1. That peace with God that
is real is that state of a believer whereby he is in reconciliation and
favor with his creator. It consists in two thing: —
1. Something negative — viz.,
the removal of God’s anger and displeasure... forgiveness of sin... total
(Isa. 1:18) — ‘White as snow,’... compared to the unrolling of a cloud
(Isa. 44:22, 23);... as though they never had been (Jer. 50:20); ‘sought for
and shall not be found,’... ‘depths of the sea,’ (Mic. 7:18);...
everlasting (Jer. 31:34); “make an end of sin.” (Dan. 9:24).
2. Something positive — viz.,
as being received and treated as the objects of God’s favor.
As the expression is used in
Scripture [it is] something more than merely negative... Title. Manifestation.
Difference between love and
favor, though sometimes called by the same names — Acceptance. Compliance . .
. as entitled to a reward.
2. [That peace with God that
is] sensible is that inward, holy calm and quietness of soul arising from
a sense and apprehension of the soul’s union with God.
A sense of this gives an
inexpressibly sweet calm. This is usually intended by Christ. (John 14:27).
This is twofold: —
1. Peace of conscience or a
sweet calm from a sense of the pardon of sin and acceptance with God as
Two things —
A sense of sufficiency.
An apprehension of the
faithfulness of the promise.
These things give a sweet
2. That rest of soul that
arises from the sense or feeling of a real conformity to and union with
Peace of confidence consists
in a sense of a relative union.
That is the rest that arises
from hope: this from love.
How the children of God come to be made partakers of this benefit.
1. The first and highest
source and spring of all is from God’s eternal foreknowledge... Choosing
’em, the particular persons by the Father.
Jer. 31:3 — “Everlasting
The love of the Father.
Giving them to the Son.
The Son owing them...
predestinating of them. (Eph. 1:4).
This is the first
2. The purchase of this
blessing was made by the offering that Christ made to the Father.
Prince of Peace. (Isa. 9:6).
Peace on earth... Nigh by the BLOOD. (Eph. 2:14). He is our peace. In the text,
peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.
The way. Great High Priest.
Offering is but one; but it is to be variously considered.
3. The way in which we come
to have an interest in this.
Purchase: and so to be
actually brought into peace with God is by being united to Christ.
Most immediately by a legal
union... Real union foundation of legal.
Being in Christ, the
believer, as it were, necessarily is a partaker.
4. The immediate efficient
of this union is the Holy Spirit.
So Christ is in them, and
they in Christ. (Rom. 8:9, 10).
The union is first by a
communication from Christ; and this is what is communicated.
The vine is united by
deriving sap: the womb by deriving life.
Thus the Holy Spirit makes
application. In this respect the peace with God is from the Holy Spirit.
5. The work by which the
Spirit works in the elect by which this union is effected is faith.
This is the uniting act.
Therefore God looks on the sinner as one with Christ, because He has accepted of
him; and his soul has united [itself to Christ].
6. The end of this union,
but which the soul has sensible peace with God, is sanctification of heart and
life... including faith and all other graces.
And thus it is that the
Spirit of God gives sensible peace.
This is the seal of the
Spirit (Eph. 1:13); earnest of the Spirit. (2 Cor. 1:22). But this ’tis a
spirit of adoption.
Distinguishing marks of it, whereby it may be distinguished from the false
appearances of it.
1. In those that have a true
peace with God their sensible peace has its foundation laid in conviction.
There is a false peace.
Spiritual conviction has its foundation in light, and not in darkness...
increased by conviction.
2. In those [that have
peace] that quietness and rest of soul they have is not only their comfort but
their virtue or nature.(?)
3. Christ is the foundation
4. In those [that have peace
there is] a sense of glory and suffering precedes a sense of propriety
A more principal foundation.
5. ...a rest of choice and
love precedes a rest of hope.
The rest of the faculties of
the soul in God is the Church’s God...goes before a rest in Him as our God...
As a rest in His favor.
6. In those [that have
peace] there is a union of heart with God and Christ, attended with an
irreconcilable war with God’s enemies.
1. A being infinitely above
the reach of everything that might make them men...
I say infinitely above...
Infinitely strong defense... as impossible as to destroy God Himself... infinite
wisdom... infinite strength engaged... infinite price... infinite truth...
Dwell “on high” ...
Foundation in that which is
eternal: from eternity to eternity...
Oath of God. (Heb. 6:17,
2. A being at peace with all
God’s creatures. In different senses.
Angels... Saints... Sun,
moon, stars. Beasts. Stones (Job 5:23).
Water and fire (Isa. 43:2).
... Whole creation ‘groans.’
Poisonous things (Mark
16:18; Luke 10:19). ... Wicked men and devils — All things for them (1 Cor.
3. Communion with God.
4. An holy and sweet walking
and friendly conversing with God. Amos 3:3 — “Two walk together.” ...
“Called you friends.”
5. More and more conformity
and assimilation to God.
6. Communion with saints (1
7. An irrefragable title to
8. Steadfastness under the
changes of life. Anchor to the soul.
A steadfast calm in the
midst of storms. A steadfast meekness in the midst of oppositions.
9. A strong and conquering
support and comfort under the troubles of life... Waiting our death.
10. Joy unspeakable.
Course to be taken in order to the obtaining this peace with God and enjoying
the benefit of it.
1. a sense of the great
2. A sense of their misery
by reason of the breach, and the absolute necessity of reconciliation. All false
rest must be destroyed. The world. Own righteousness.
3. A conviction that God may
justly refuse ever to be at peace with us.
4. An eternal divorce of the
heart from that which made and which maintains the breach.
5. The Prince of Peace must
be resorted to and embraced.
6. An high war must be
maintained with God’s enemies.
7. A spirit of peace and
love must rule in our hearts and lives.
This is the end of union
between God and the soul. And this is the end of union between Christians, one
with another. If we are much under the influences of a spirit contrary to this,
we can’t expect to have the sensible peace of God. But it you live in the
lively exercise [of this] it will be the way to love.
The feeling of this gives
sensible peace, as I observed before.