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The firft is, That notwithstanding fome Wicked Men are very profperous, and fome Good Men very much Afflicted; yet God makes a very vifible Diftinction between them in this World; enough to discover his Love and Care towards Good Men, and his Difpleasure against the Wicked: Which fufficiently answers the Ends of his Providence here; that though wicked Men profper for a while here, yet the Divine Vengeance often overtakes them; their Ends prove Miferable, or they are punish'd in their Pofterity, and their Names utterly rooted out: But the Divine Providence watches over good Men, delivers them from many Evils, and many times vifibly owns them in this World, and fets fome peculiar Marks of Favour and Honour upon them, and bleffes their Pofterity for their fakes. This the Pfalmift has fome refpect to in this place, 16, 17, 18. v. When I thought to know this, it was too painful for me, until I went into the Sanctuary of God; then understood I their end. Surely thou didst fet them in flippery places, thou caftedft them down into deftruction. How are they brought into defolation, as in a moment? they are utterly confumed with terrors. This is the Portion of many wicked Men, notwithstanding their great Profperity for a time. Nevertheless I am continually with thee; thou haft holden me by my right hand. My flesh and my heart faileth, but God is the strength of my heart, and my portion for ever. The like we may fee at large in the 37th Pfalm. And this is a very good Anfwer, as far as it reaches; for it proves God's great Love and Regard to good Men, and his Abhorrence of the Wicked: That God judgeth the righteous; and that God is angry with the wicked every day, 7th Pfal. 11, 12, 13. V. But this is not a full Anfwer. For there are fo many wicked Men Profperous, and fo many Good Men Afflicted, that if God

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makes no other difference between good and bad Men, than what he does in this World, this can be no Vindication of the Wifdom and Juftice of Providence, when there is fuch a visible Failure of Justice in fo many thousand Inftances.

And therefore 2. To make this Argument of any Force, we must extend it to future Rewards and Punishments, and then it is a very good Anfwer; for when that Diftinction God makes between good and bad Men in this World, is not fo equal and univerfal as to extend to all good and bad Men, it is a fufficient Proof and Earnest what their different Portions fhall be in the next World. And this the Pfalmift intended in that Latitude of Expreffion, whereby he defcribes God's Vengeance on the Wicked, and his Care and Protection of the Good. In the 73d Pfalm he refolves this Difficulty into the End of wicked Men, which he could give no fatisfactory Account of, until he went into the Sanctuary of God, and then he understood their End. What End does he mean? Only their Death? But good Men muft die as well as the wicked. Or is it the Manner and Circumftances of their Death, as it there follows? Thou haft fet them in flippery places; thou cafteft them down into Destruction; how are they brought into Defolation, as in a moment? They are utterly confumed with Terrors. But all bad Men do not come to fuch a Tragical End; as he owns in this very Pfalm, That they have no Bands in their Death, but their Strength is firm. And the 49th Pfalm fuppofes, that they may live and die in great Profperity; and yet that their End is that they fhall perish in the Grave like Sheep: They are laid in the Grave, Death fhall feed on them; (that is, the Worm that never dieth fhall devour and confume them) and the righteous fhall have Dominion over them in the Morning, and their Beauty hall confume in the Grave from their Dwelling: But

God fhall redeem my Soul from the Power of the Grave, for he shall receive me. This fhews what that End is of good and bad Men, which anfwers this Difficulty of Providence; not their mere dying, which is common to both, but their different States after Death, that vifible difference which will be made between them in the Morning, when they fhall all rife out of their Graves to receive the Recompence of their Works: Then the righteous fhall have Dominion over them in the Morning. This difference the Wife Man obferves in the 14th of Proverbs 7. 32. The Wicked is driven away in bis Wickedness, but the Righteous bath Hope in bis Death. Wicked Men after all their Profperity, are many times feiz'd with a Divine Vengeance. and hurried out of this World, diftracted and confum'd with Terrors, as the Pfalmift fpeaks: For what is the Hope of the Wicked, though he bath gain'd, when God taketh away his Soul? Will God hear his Cries when Trouble comes upon him? Fob 27. 8, 9. But good Men, whatever they fuffer in this World, yet go out of it full of Hopes and joyful Expectations of a Reward: They have Hope in their Death. Thus in the 37th Pfalm, ver. 37, 38. Mark the perfect Man, and behold the upright; for the End of that Man is Peace: But the Tranfgref fors fhall be destroyed together, the End of the Wickked fhall be cut off. What can this Peace fignify, but the Joy and Triumph of a good Confcience, and great Hopes; that State of Peace and Reft, which good Men fhall enter into after Death? And therefore the Deftruction of the Wicked, the End of the Wicked, which shall be cut off, must be referr'd to the other World alfo; That the Wicked fhall be turn'd into Hell, and all the Nations that forget God, Pfalm 9. 17. Which, if it be un- ́. derstood only of a Temporal Death and Destruction, is true of all other People and Nations, how Religious foever they be; and therefore this, being L 3

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the peculiar Punishment of the Wicked, muft fignify fomething after Death.

Thus I have fhewn you what Confirmation the Law of Mofes gives to all the Natural and Moral Arguments for a future State: From whence it appears, that this was the Univerfal Belief of all the Old Teftament Saints. Though the Law of Mofes contained no exprefs Promifes of another Life, yet they had fuch collateral Evidence, that no good Man doubted of it: Which I fhall explain more fully in fome following Sections, by confidering God's Covenant with Abraham, and the Nature of the Mofaical Difpenfation.

SECT. IV.

The Immortality of the Soul prov'd from God's Covenant with Abrahan.

what a new Confirmation

the Hiftory of Mofes gives to all the Natural and Moral Arguments for a future State; let us now confider that Covenant which God made with Abraham, which was the beginning and Foundation of the Mofaical Difpenfation. For when the reft of the World had fo foon after the Flood declin'd to Idolatry, it pleas'd God to call Abraham out of Ur of the Chaldees, to go and fojourn in a ftrange Land, which he would fhew him; and for his Encouragement he promises, I will make of thee a great Nation, and I will bless thee, and make thy Name great, and thou fhalt be a Bleffing; and I will bless them that bless thee, and curfe them that curfe thee; and in thee fball all Families of the Earth be blessed, Gen. 12. 1, 2, 3. When, in Obedience to God, Abraham

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was come into Canaan, the Lord appear'd unto him again, and faid, Unto thy Seed will I give this Land, v. 7. When Abraham and Lot were parted, God renews this Promise to him again; Lift up now thine eyes, and look from the place where thou art, Northward, and Southward, and Eastward, and Weftward; for all the Land that thou feeft, to thee will I give it, and to thy Seed for ever; and I will make thy Seed as the Duft of the Earth; fo that if a Man can number the Duft of the Earth, then shall thy Seed alfo be 'number'd. Gen. 13. 14, 15, 16. After this God made a more general Promife, Gen. 15. 1. The Word of the Lord came to Abraham in a Vifion, faying, Fear not, Abraham, I am thy Shield, and exceeding great Reward. And upon Abraham's Complaint, that God had yet given him no Seed, he renews the Promife of a Son to him; He that hall come forth out of thine own bowels fhall be thy Heir; and that his Seed shall be as numberlefs as the Stars in Heaven, v. 4, and 5. And tells him what fhall happen to his Seed before they fhould poffefs that good Land: Thy Seed fhall be a Stranger in the Land that is not theirs, and fhall ferve them; and they shall afflict them four hundred Years. In the 17th of Gen. God renews this Covenant with Abraham; I am the Almighty God, walk before me, and be thou perfect, and I will make a Covenant between me and thee, and will multiply thee exceedingly. And, in Teftimony of this, he changes his Name from Abram to Abraham; For a Father of many Nations have I made thee; and will establish my Covenant betwixt me and thee, and thy Seed after thee, for an Everlasting Covenant; to be a God to thee and to thy Seed after thee: And inftituted Circumcifion as a Sign of this Covenant. And to name no more; When Abraham, in Obedience to God's Command, had offer'd up his Son Ifaac to him, God renews this Covenant with an

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Oath:

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