approach him, and therefore in the Bowels of his Compaffion not only invites, but commands us to come. Can we then turn our Backs upon fo gracious an Invitation? Can we refufe to obey fo endearing a Command? Can we deny our Company to fo kind a Friend,


great a Benefactor? Jonadab the Son of Rechab, was a mere Man, of the fame Paffions, Imperfections, and Weaknesses with our felves; and yet what he commanded his Followers, was (as you may fee in the 35th of Jeremiah) punctually obferved. The Philofophers were likewife but Men full of Ignorance and Blindness, Immortalities and Sins; and yet their Difciples were Superftitiously Careful to frame their Lives according to their Rules and Maxims. But he, who calls us, is the Author and Finisher of our Faith, our Lord and God, our Maker and Redeemer, the Holy One of Ifrael, who cloath'd himself with Flesh, and even laid down his most precious Life for our fakes. What an Indignity then do we offer to his Authority, when we defpife his Commands? How fhamelefly do we trample upon his infinite Love, when we refufe his Invitation? what

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whatever we think of it now, we shall then be fully fenfible of our Infolence and Ingratitude, when the Scene fhall be chang'd, the time of Mercy gone, and the Day of the fierce Anger of the Lamb fhall come, when he fhall alter his Voice, and no longer invite us to Repentance and Pardon, nor longer command us to partake of his Munifi. cence and Bounty; but fhall moft terribly lift up his Voice as the Lyon of the Tribe of Judah, and command us away from his prefence into outer Darkness, where is Weeping, and Wailing, and gnashing of Teeth. This, by way of precaution, he has graciously foretold us in that Parable of his in the 22d of St. Matthew. The Kingdom of Heaven (fays he) is like unto a certain King, which made a Marriage for his Son, and fent forth his Servants to call them that were bidden to the Wedding: and they would not come, Again be fent forth other Servants, faying, Tell them which are bidden, Behold, I have prepared my Dinner: my Oxen and my Fatlings are kill'd, and all things are ready: come unto the Marriage, But they made light of it, and went their ways, one to his Farm, another to his Merchandife: And the Rem

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nant took his Servants, and entreated them Spitefully, and flew them. But when the King heard thereof, he was wroth; and he fent forth his Armies, and deftroyed these Murderers, and burnt up their City. Come then (you fee) you must to the Lord's Supper. He invites you, he importunes you, he commands you by his Servants, the Minifters and Paftors of his Flock, to come; and you must not difobey. Which appears,

2. From the Practice of the Primitive Chriftians. They rightly underftood the Commandment of the Lord, and were accordingly careful moft faithfully to fulfil it. They therefore affembled themselves together, and receiv'd the Holy Communion every Day. They continu'd daily in the Temple, fays a St. Luke, and in breaking Bread from Houfe to Houfe. This Cuftom continu'd fome confiderable time in the A&.2.26. Western Churches, as appears from b St. Cyprian, bSt. Ambrofe, St. Hierom, de Orat. and b St. Auftin. And tho' perhaps it wore Domin. p. off fooner in the Churches of the Eaft, 147.Anyet cSt. Bafil informs us, that in his in locum. time they communicated, however, Edit.Oxon. four times a Week, on the Lord's Day, Epift.289 ad Cafar.



Wed- Patric.

Wednesday, Friday and Saturday, yea, d In Epift. and upon other Days too; nay, a Chry& ad Ephef. foftom adds, that fome truly Religious A and Devout Perfons, did fo every Day, Savil. if the Memory or Festival of any Mar

778. Ed.

tyr fell upon them. But, how vaftly different is the behaviour of Chriftians at this Day? How exceedingly fhort do we come of those primitive Patterns? They were careful to communicate as frequently as they could, but now many among us do it as feldom as poffibly they can. They thought it as neceffary as their daily Food: But now there are fome who do not believe it to be neceffary at all. They would not be kept from it by any Terrors or Allurements: But now, what trifling Excufes, what impertinent Pretences, authorize our Abfence? No wonder then, that those primitive Christians were fo much our Betters; fo Holy and Unblameable in all manner of Converfation, that the fouleft Afperfions, the blackeft Calumnies of their implacable Enemies could never eclipse their Glory. They stood always with their Loins girded, with their Shooes on their Feet, and with their Staff in their Hand, were always ready to go forth, and

wait upon their Lord. They were always trimming their Lamps, always preparing to meet the Bridegroom of their Souls; and by these means became burning and fhining Lights in their Generations. But now the fhameful contempt and neglect of this Holy Ordinance have unhappily let in upon us a deluge of Impiety, and caus'd Atheism and Prophaneness to over-flow the Land.

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3. We are oblig'd to come to the Sacrament of the Lord's Supper, becaufe 'tis the difcriminating Mark of our Profeffion, the Badge of Chriftianity, the Livery (as I may fo fay) of the Crucify'd Jefus. Both Jews and Gentiles indeed had their Religious Banquets, as well as we. They feafted upon the remainders of their Sacrifices, and thereby moft folemnly dedicated themselves to the Service and Worship of that Deity, of e whofe Sacrifices they e'Esivnéeat; and to thefe Repafts (I con- τι τεθυκό ceive) our Lord had a particular re-rébuta, spect in the Inftitution of this Mystery. To ispov But then the Sacrifices of the former Vidim. of these were Typical, or Figures of good things to come; and thofe of the



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