XVIII. Of the Assurance of Grace and Salvation

1. Although temporary Believers, and other unregenerate men, may vainly deceive themselves with false hopes, and carnal presumptions, of being in the favor of God, and state of salvation, awhich hope of theirs shall perish; yet such as truly believe in the Lord Jesus, and love him in sincerity, endeavoring to walk in all good Conscience before him, may in this life be certainly assured bthat they are in the state of Grace; and may rejoice in the hope of the glory of God which hope shall never make them cashamed.

aJob 8:13–14; Matt. 7:22–23 b1 John 2:3; 1 John 3:14, 18–19, 21, 24; 1 John 5:13 cRom. 5:2, 5

2. This certainty is not a bare conjectural, and probable persuasion, grounded upon aa fallible hope; but an infallible assurance of faith founded on the Blood and Righteousness of Christ brevealed in the Gospel; and also upon the inward cevidence of those graces of the Spirit unto which promises are made, and on the testimony of the dSpirit of adoption, witnessing with our Spirits that we are the children of God; and as a fruit thereof keeping the heart both ehumble and holy.

aHeb. 6:11, 19 bHeb. 6:17–18 c2 Pet. 1:4–5, 10–11 dRom. 8:15–16 e1 John 3:1–3

3. This infallible assurance doth not so belong to the essence of faith, but that a true Believer, may wait long and conflict with many dif­ficulties before he be apartaker of it; yet being enabled by the Spirit to know the things which are freely given him of God, he may without extraordinary revelation in the right use of means battain thereunto: and therefore it is the duty of everyone, to give all diligence to make their Calling and Election sure, that thereby his heart may be enlarged in peace and joy in the holy Spirit, in love and thankfulness to God, and in strength and cheerfulness in the duties of obedience, the proper cfruits of this Assurance; so far is it dfrom inclining men to looseness.

aIsa. 50:10; Ps. 88:1–18; Ps. 77:1–12 b1 John 4:13; Heb. 6:11–12 cRom. 5:1–2, 5; Rom. 14:17; Ps. 119:32 dRom. 6:1–2; Titus 2:11–12, 14

4. True Believers may have the assurance of their Salvation divers ways shaken, diminished, and intermitted; as aby negligence in pre­ serving of it, by bfalling into some special Sin, which woundeth the Conscience, and grieveth the Spirit, by some sudden or cvehement temptation, by God’s withdrawing the dlight of his countenance and suffering even such as fear him to walk in darkness and to have no light; yet are they never destitute of the eseed of God, and Life fof Faith, that Love of Christ, and the brethren, that sincerity of Heart, and Conscience of duty, out of which by the operation of the Spirit, this Assurance may in due time be grevived: and by the which in the mean time they are hpreserved from utter despair.

aSong 5:2–3, 6 bPs. 51:8, 12, 14 cPs. 116:11; Ps. 77:7–8; Ps. 31:22 dPs. 30:7 e1 John 3:9 fLuke 22:32 gPs. 42:5, 11 hLam. 3:26–31