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True knowledge of heavenly things increases according to the measure of sanctification. I do not speak of knowledge that is called false, as the Apostle somewhere terms it, but of true knowledge. This is inward, experimental understanding, and this grows up as holiness enlarges itself in the soul. The clearer the mirror, the more perfect is the reflection that it makes. The more pure and spotless the soul is the better it receives and judges of heavenly things. If it is but daybreak or a dim and dusk twilight, we have a more doubtful appearance of things that are before us. But if it grows to a morning-light, and then increases into a noonday brightness, then have we a more exact and judicious vision of them. When the soul begins at first to turn to God, it has some taste or smattering of these spiritual dainties, and it is like that taste, which new-borne babes have of the milk that they suck from the breasts. But when the Christian follows on to know the Lord, whose going forth is prepared as the morning, and when he does resolvedly, and strongly carry on the work of sanctification in his heart and life, then he comes to a more mature and ripened judgment of these things. He was a child before, but now he is grown up to a strong man in Christ. The great Apostle tells us, when he was a child, “he thought as a child, he understood as a child,” but when he became a man, “he put away childish things,” and his apprehensions of truth were but low and weak. This is so because his capacity was not great, but now he looks upon the brighter face of truth with greater complacency then he did before. Our Lord Jesus tells us in John 7: 17, “If any man will do his will, he shall know him of the doctrine whether it be of God.” The best way to know assuredly and impregnably the truth of those things that God speaks in His word, is to observe and obey those things that God enjoins. The Holy Ghost, which is the best witness of Jesus Christ and His Doctrine, is given to them that obey Him, Acts 5: 32, and these men do sweetly rest in an assurance of the truth. Others who are of impure spirits quarrel and snarl against it. He that would grow in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, let him grow in grace, as the Apostle exhorts in 2 Pet. 3: 18. One that is newly entered into the School of Christ finds it a hard and difficult task to subdue every corruption: the sins of education, custom, and natural tendency are not easily mattered. So, it comes to pass that upon any lapse, or fall into any particular sin, the soul begins to be haunted with scruples, doubts, and fears, and upon such occasions falls to question around the truth of grace and the certainty of the Gospel. But if one keeps in a constant and close walking with God, there are no such clouds arising rather a constant serenity upon the face of the soul. The truth is all those secret suspicions and jealousies concerning the certainty of the ways of Christ, or of the work of His grace upon our hearts, proceeds from some guilt contracted by acts of violence against the light and principles of the new Creature. If you would be perfect in, and assured of the truths of the Gospel, take the Apostle’s counsel, “Put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ and make no provision for the flesh to fulfill the lusts thereof.”