27. Thou believest, that, after this life, (which cannot last very long; it will, and that shortly, have an end) there remain but two ways for all men, of what state and condition soever, that ever were, to be disposed of; either into life and glory everlasting, or else into pains and torments infinite and insupportable; and, by consequence, that thy soul is an immortal substance, which shall for ever continue somewhere and according to thy behaviour here, during that short measure of time which thou livest upon that earth, it must expect a reward proportionable thereto. If thou canst persuade thyself to walk worthy of that calling, whereunto thou art called in Jesus Christ; if thou wilt not forswear and renounce that glorious profession which thou madest in thy baptism; if thou canst be content to submit thyself to the easy yoke of Christ; propose to thyself what reward thou canst imagine, give thy thoughts scope and licence to be excessive and overflowing in their desires; if thou art not satisfied to the uttermost, infinitely above what thou art now able to comprehend, tell God he is a liar, and hath deceived thee. O! what unspeakable joys shall hereafter expect thee! O! with what a burden and weight of glory shalt thou even be oppressed!

28. But on the other side, if, notwithstanding such inestimable blessings as are now set before thine eyes, thou art yet resolved to content thyself with such vain trifling pleasures as thou canst meet with in this life, which yet thou canst not attain to but with as much pains, and anxiety, and care, as if rightly applied, would have been sufficient to have procured heaven for thee! what shall I say unto thee? Only this-"Thou hast thy re

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ward; remember that thou hast already received thy good things." What a terrible affrighting speech is this! it may be, thou hast fed and glutted thy lusts with some pleasures of this life; it may be, thou hast satisfied, in some small measure, thy ambition with honour and preferment; and yet it may be, for all thy cares and travails, thou hast not been able to attain to any of those things as thou didst desire: whether thou hast or not, it is all one, there is little to choose; but howsoever, "Remember that thou hast received thy good things;" remember, "Thou hast thy reward." Do not hereafter presume to offer to pretend to any the least good from God. It may be, hereafter thou mayst come to such want, as to stand in need of a cup of cold water; nay, it may be, thou wouldst think thyself happy, if any body would afford thee but one drop of water to refresh thy tongue: but in vain; for, "Son, remember thou hast already received thy good things." Thou never sawest a beggar so utterly wretched and destitute, but he might almost every where have filled himself with water, and have thanked nobody for it; and yet, though thou shouldst even consume thyself with entreating and crying for it, yet none should be found to give it thee; even thy liberal good father Abraham will deny it to thee.

29. Surely there cannot be found so impudent, so unreasonable a sinner, as to profess he is fully persuaded of these things, and that he hath a desire, and even some hope, that God will be so merciful to him, as to preserve him, that none of those things happen unto him, and yet resolve to follow the devices of his own heart; to say, he acknowledgeth that the joys, which are reserved for

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penitent believers, are so excessively glorious, that the afflictions of this life are not worthy of them, much less the vain pleasures thereof; and yet withal, rather than not enjoy the "pleasures of sin for a season," to make himself incapable of those great blessings! such a generation of men I find in Holy Scripture, and God himself takes notice of them, who say, "We shall have peace, though we walk in the imaginations of our heart :" but withal I can scarcely meet with God so impatient through the whole Bible, as he is with people of such a temper as this; "Surely the Lord will be avenged of such a nation as this, and will make his wrath to smoke against them."

30. Therefore, whosoever thou art, that hast taken up thy resolution to walk in the imagination of thine own heart; at least, take so much pity of thyself, do not thou thyself add violence and heat to the wrath of God, which shall smoke against thee, by pretending to a belief of heaven or hell, or by seeming to profess, that all the while that thou art busy in the prosecutions of thine ungodly lusts, notwithstanding that, all that time, this opinion hath never left thee, "that God will bring thee to judgment;" that even that very body of thine, which thou madest a mansion for the devil, an instrument for any wickedness that he would suggest unto thee, yet that that body would be raised up; that, to thy extreme horror and astonishment, God would take such particular care of that very body of thine, that wheresoever it were lost, he would recover it, though dispersed to the four winds of heaven, and build it up again, (thou sayest thou knowest for what use) even to be a mark, against which he will empty his quivers, and shoot

out all the darts of fiery indignation, in the punishing of whom he will express his Almighty power.

31. But I cannot allow myself any longer time to prosecute the former part of my proposition, viz. To shew how much men deceive themselves, who think they indeed believe the fundamental points of their faith, when, by their practice and course of life, they live in an habitual exercise of such sins as are utterly repugnant and destructive of such a belief. And this I think I have performed but yet only in general terms, not descending to a view of some more eminent and particular sins and enormities for that therefore which remains of the time that your patience will allow me, I will spend it in acquitting myself of the other part of my promise, namely, in instancing in some extraordinary uncontrolled practices of these times, and discovering how utterly they do destroy the very grounds and foundations of our religion, and how impossible it is they should consist with a true sincere profession of Christianity.

32. As first, for example, how ordinarily do we meet with this practice, for men which are above others in wealth and power, to employ both these to their utmost abilities for the maintaining of an unjust cause against a poor inferior adversary? I am sure this is no news to you; you do not startle at the hearing of such a crime as this; and yet, if it be well considered, what can be imagined more monstrous and abominable? For, give me leave to suppose, or put the case, that some one of this company were guilty of this sin:

33. If I should ask him, Whence, and from whom he had his riches or power? whom he would acknowledge for his benefactor? I make no

question but he would give me a good religious answer, and say, that "he would not sacrifice to his net, nor burn incense to his drag;" but that God, who gave a blessing to his cares and endeavours, had advanced him to such a place and fortune in the world. Again, if I should ask him, In what esteem and value (he thought that) God holds his faithful servants? or, whether he would take it well to have them oppressed and trampled on by others more potent than themselves? he must needs answer again, that God is no accepter of persons, neither riches nor poverty are a means to procure his favour; but that in all conditions of men, he that loveth righteousness, and hateth iniquity, shall be accepted by him."

34. If these be his answers (as, without all contradiction, unless he will profess himself an atheist, such must be the effect of them), then let him consider, what a woeful condition he has concluded himself to be in, and what reason he has to thank God for his honour or riches! Does he think, that God has furnished him with strength and weapons for this end, that thereby he might be able to make war with himself, that he might have the power to overrun and lay waste those whom God loveth as the apple of his own eye? Can he imagine, that God has been so beneficial and liberal to him, in preferring him to a rank and degree above others not inferior to him in the riches and treasures of God's grace, and therefore as dear unto him as himself, for this end, that thereby he may prove a more able and fit instrument for the devil to wreak his malice and hatred upon those whom God loves?

35. Therefore, if there be ever such a person in

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