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in the way of righteousness is life, saith Solomon, and in the pathway thereof there is no death. (Prov. xii. 28.) Because the spirit of a man goeth upward and is immortal; but the spirit of a beast goeth downward, and is mortal; but the soul of the righteous shall never die, but is eternal. (Eccl. iii. 21.) And whosoever liveth and believeth in me saith Christ, shall never die. (John xi. 26.) Trust ye therefore in the Lord for ever, for in the Lord Jehovah is everlasting strength; for behold the Lord cometh out of his place to punish the inhabi.. tants of the earth for their iniquity, and the earth also shall disclose her blood, and shall no more cover her slain. (Isaiah xxvi. see Isaiah lvii.) And again see Ezekiel concerning the resurrection of dry bones. (chap. xxx.) And again, many of them that sleep in the dust of the earth, shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame, and everlasting contempt, and they that be wise shall shine as the brightness of the firmament, and they that turn many to righteousness as the stars for ever and ever. (Dan. xii. 2, 3.) See my Book called The Blessed State of the Righteous. O thou which hast showed me great and sore troubles shall quicken me again, and shalt bring me up again from the depths of the earth. (Psalm lxxi. 20.) And as the Father delivereth his children out of all their troubles, and raiseth up the dead, and quickeneth them, even so the son quickeneth whom he will. Marvel not at this: for the hour is coming in the which all that are in the graves shall hear his voice. And shall come forth they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life and they that have done evil unto the resurrection of damnation. (John v.) But every one that believeth in the Son of God, and loveth him and his commandments, shall have everlasting life, saith the Holy One, and I will raise him up at the last day. [John vi. 40.] And now if you read my Book called The Miracles of Christ you may see his Almighty power, in that of raising some from the dead whilst he was upon the earth; for we see how he raised Lazarus from the dead, and that after he had been dead four days. [see John xi] And still should some suppose that our Lord hath not power to raise the dead now he is ascended into his glory, O what an accursed sin is this for a man to argue against the word of God, and against the will of God, and his goodness, and that of raising souls to his everlasting glory; O surely it is an accursed sin, and it bars the grace and faith of God, which leadeth unto life out of their souls; O poor sinful souls do
not die away like this, but hear me, and stir yourselves up a little by that common grace that you have, and consider now if there is not a quickening spirit, then how came you a living soul? And if there be not an adversary against righteousness, how then came the world so wicked? And again, surely we are as likely to be quickened again after death, and to be raised up into another world as we were at the first, to be quickened and to be raised up into this world. Now I believe that the mystery is as great, that is, for man at the first to be createdt upon the earth, and to be endued with a living soul, as the mystery is now man is created, why his soul should not return again after the death of the body, to God which gave it; but these mysteries are in a great measure made known to the righteous, and will be, and blessed is the man that believeth in his God; but there be some that imagine that there be no resurrection; as it is written, the Sadducees say that there is no resurrection, neither angel, nor spirit. [Acts xxiii. 8.] But such people do err, my brethren, because sin and Satan hath blinded them, and the way of truth they have not known, therefore they are enemies to their own souls, and to all others: but my beloved brethren, you do see that we have many infallible proofs to the contrary, an we have many infallible proofs that our blessed Lord and Saviour rose again from the dead, and was taken up into heaven. [Acts i.] And again, Matthew is a witness, and declares it by an angel, which peared unto two women that came to the sepulchre of our Lord, and the angel said unto them, Fear not ye, for I know that ye seek Jesus which was crucified, he is not here, for he is risen, as he said, Come see the place where the Lord lay, and by the command of the angel, they departed quickly from the sepulchre with fear, and great joy, and did run to bring his disciples word; and as they went to tell his disciples, behold, Jesus met them, saying, All hail, and they came and held him by the feet and worshipped him; and after this he appeared to his disciples, and saluted them with the power of his love, and he opened their understanding, that they might understand the Scriptures concerning him, and he gave his disciples, church and people a command to preach the Gospel, and a promise of his grace, even to the end of the world, and the Evangelists are witnesses of these things. [see Matt. xxviii. —Mark xvi.—Luke xxiv.-John xx. and xxii.] And then was our Lord received up into glory everlasting. Amen. Therefore we plainly see, my brethren, that God raised him
from the dead. [Acts xiii. 30.] And now is Christ risen from the dead, and become the first furits of them that slept, for since by man came death, by man came also the resurrection of the dead, for as in Adam all died, even so in Christ shall all be made alive. [Cor. xv.] For the Lord shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God, and the dead in Christ shall rise first, then we which are alive and remain, shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air, and so shall we ever be with the Lord, wherefore comfort one another with these words. [1 Thes. iii. 15.] Therefore my beloved brethren, these that are in Christ, shall not die eternal, as it is written, neither can they die any more, saith the Holy One, for they are equal unto the angels, and are the children of God, being the children of the resurrection; therefore I say again, Comfort one another with these words. (Luke xx. 36.)
The Day of Judgment.
There is a time that man shall die, and after this his soul, shall rise, and come to judgment-there is a day coming in which the Lord will judge the world in righteousness, by him whom he hath ordained, which is Christ our Lord, for we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad. (2 Cor. v. 10.) And this appears to me to be very right, good, and reasonable, for how can things be settled right, well, and truly, except there be a judgment day, for we see that things are not always settled aright in this world, for we see that many innocent and holy lives have been taken away by the wicked, and that they have had no help from man; and how can we account for these things, and many more if God do not judge the world in righteousness; will that pure and righteous God, do you think, suffer the righteous to be destroyed from the earth, and let the wicked go unpunished? No, for sometimes we see in this world, the innocent condemned, and the guilty go free, but this denotes that there is a judgment day to be; for we see, and have heard that many of the holy lives of the prophets, and of the priests, and of the disciples of our Lord have been taken away by the cruel hands of the wicked, and there is a day coming in which the Lord will judge them, and repay them to their face, and none can deliver them out of his hands,
for the guilty sinner confessed that he doeth according to his will, in the army of heaven, and among the inhabitants of the earth, and none can stay his hand, nor say unto him, What doest thou. (Dan. iv. 35.) And now, by the help of my God, I will endeavour to excite the Christian's faith, and to convince the wicked that there will be a judgment day, and that by what we have seen already, and by what follows. Now when we read that shocking account of Ahab the king, and Jezebeel his wife, and how they accused Naboth which appears to be innocent, and charged him with blasphemy, and took away his life, to the intent of taking possession of his vineyard. (see 1 Kings xxi.) And it appears in many things that Ahab was very wicked, and so was Jezebeel his wife; but when Elijah the prophet denounced the judgments of God against him, concerning this wicked deed, he seems somewhat to humble himself, but we have no clear proof that he ever sincerely repented of his wickedness; but on the contrary, it is to be feared that he did not. Now such things as these, and the like, seems to excite my belief that there will be a judgment day; for shall innocent lives be taken away, and no one regard it? Again, it appears to me to be likely that all such characters must stand at the bar of God at that great day, and be judged according to the deeds done in the body, if they do not repent in time. And we read again, how that wicked king Jehoram was lifted up, and slew all his brethren which were better than himself, and we do not find that he repented, but it is said, that he died an infamous death, and he departed without being desired, or without desire. (2 Chron. xxi.) O when we look, and ponder, and rightly consider upon these things, we find that they are not finally settled here, but that there must be a judgment day hereafter; but you may read of a more full account of these things, in my Books called The Sinful State of Man, and in another called The Cruelty of the Wicked, see my Book The Punishments of the Wicked. And again, we see how that Joash with the princes of Judah left the house of the Lord God of their fathers, and served idols, and because, Zechariah the son of the priest, spake to them in the name of the Lord concerning their wickedness, they stoned him with stones, so that he died, and when he died, he said, The Lord look upon it, and require it. (2 Chron. xxiv. 21.) And we see again how that by proud wicked lust and revengeful spite, that Herodias by a wrong cause, took away the life of holy John the Baptist, for by
their wicked and cruel desire, he was beheaded in the prison, and his head was brought in a charger, and given to the damsel, and she brought it to her mother. (Matt. xiv.) So then my reader, seeing those things are so, if there be no judgment day, nor no reward for the righteous hereafter, what profit have we in serving the Lord? Or what hath it profited the righteous, whose lives have been destroyed by the cruel hands of the wicked; but let us not be faithless, but believe; for there is a judgment day coming, in which the Lord will, I believe, require the blood of his saints, as it were at the hand of the wicked, and O what a shocking sight this will be, if that holy man's head should appear unto Herodias at that great day of accounts, in the same manner as it was brought unto her, when she was upon the earth, for the Lord will surely require these things at the hands of the impenitant; so I believe at that great day that the Lord will require of these things as much as this, and that he will ask, and that with authority, and say, Why, or for what cause have ye taken away the lives of my people? And then surely methinks that they will stand speechless, and then will it be fulfilled which was spoken by St. James, that is, that he shall have judgment without mercy, that hath showed no mercy: but where there hath been mercy and love, then they will rejoice against judgments. (James ii. 13.) And righteous, just, and good is the Lord in all his works, and he shall endure for ever, he hath prepared his throne for judgments, and he shall judge the world in righteousness, he shall minister judgments to the people in uprightness, for the Lord also will be a refuge for the oppressed, for he will be an high refuge in times of trouble, and they that know thy name, will put their trust in thee, for thou Lord has, not forsaken them that seek thee. (Psalm ix. 7.) But my readers, if we seek the Lord aright, we must seek him as the pearl of great price. (Matt. xiii. 46.) That is, we must forsake all that is wrong and offensive in his sight, and so try and prove our own hearts, and leave off all sinful courses of life, and idle words, for of such things as these, saith our Lord men shall give account of in the day of judgment. (Matt. xii. 36.) So you see that we must love the Lord our God above all things, and that with a true and right desire of the soul; but this must be all done by the power, and righteous merits of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, and there is a Book of remembrance written before him for them that feared the Lord, and that thought upon his name, and they shall be mine