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Full text of "Heaven opened [microform] ; or, A brief and plain discovery of the riches of God's covenant of grace"

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A. D. 1665. " 




I I I 

THE Rev. Richard Alleine, the able author of this 
treatise, having published an excellent work enti- 
tled "Vindicise Pietatis," was requested to embody 
into it a precious gem exhibiting "the Riches of 
the Covenant of Grace, and the Believer's Triumph," 
from the pen of his brother the Rev. Joseph Alleine, 
author of the "Alarm to the Unconverted." The 
result was that his meditations on the high theme 
produced this glowing, spiritual, and practical treatise, 
of which the gem from his brother constitutes chapters 
14 and. 15. ; 

In the present edition, various, antiquated or doubt- 
ful phrases or sentences have been dropped, and a 
few paragraphs on a single point which might give 
offence to some evangelical Christians, have been 
omitted. The headings and subdivisions of the chap- 
ters have been made more distinct, and four very 
short chapters on related topics are now united in 
chapter 5. The treatise, says the author, is "fol- 
lowed with my prayers that the good land, whereof 
some clusters are here presented to thee, may be 
thine inheritance. See and take." 




God himself granted in the Covenant, to be our Friend, Portion, 
Sun, Shield, 9 


Christ in the Covenant. As the light of life ; the Lord our right- 
eousness; our Lord and King; our Head and Husband, . . 29 


The Spirit in the Covenant. As a Spirit of wisdom and revela- 
tion, holiness and sanctification, truth and direction, comfort 
and consolation, "... 42 


The earth in the Covenant. The good things of the earth ; the 
evil things of the earth, or the cross, 59 


The angels of light the powers of darkness death the king- 
dom, in the Covenant, 82 

A new heart in the Covenant, 93 

A heart to know the Lord in the Covenant, 102 

One heart in the Covenant, 120 


A heart of flesh in the Covenant, :. . 148 

A heart to ]ove the Lord in the Covenant, 172 

A heart to fear the Lord in the Covenant, 199 

. An obedient heart in the Covenant, 227 

An enduring Covenant, 255 


Riches of the Covenant, or the exceeding great and precious pr&m- 
ises. Ey Rev. Joseph Alleine, . . 


The believer's triumph in God's Covenant, or the various con- - 
flicts and glorious conquests of faith over unbelief. By Rev. 
Joseph Alleine, 305 


' To the unconverted, with a form of words expressing man's 

covenanting with God, 329 

To God's covenant people, 356 




GOOD news from heaven ! the Day-spring from on 
high hath visited this undone world ! After a deluge 
of sin and misery, behold the bow in the cloud. The 
Lord God has made and established A NEW COVENANT, 
and this it is that has cast the first beam on the dark 
.state of lost and fallen man, and has brought life and 
immortality to light. This covenant is the hope of 
sinners, the riches of saints, the magna charta of the 
city of God : the forfeited lease of eternity renewed ; 
* God's deed of gift, wherein he has, on fair conditions, 
granted sinners their lives, and settled upon his saints 
an everlasting inheritance. 

'Hear, ye forlorn captives, who have sold your- 
selves to eternal bondage, spoiled yourselves of all 
your glory, sealed yourselves up under everlasting 
misery. You are dead in your sins, guilty before 
God, under wrath, under a curse, bound over to eter- 
nal vengeance. But behold, there is yet hope in 
Israel concerning this thing; the Lord God has had 
compassion upon you, has opened a way for you to 


escape out of all this misery and bondage. Lift up 
the hands that hang down, strengthen the trembling 
knees : an ark, an ark has Grod prepared, in which is 
salvation from the flood ; A COVENANT, A NEW COVENANT 
has he made and established, which, if you lay hold 
on it, will recover all you have lost, ransom you from 
death, redeem you from hell, and advance you to a 
more sure and blessed condition than your original 
state from which you have fallen. This is the hope 
of sinners ; this is the heritage of the servants of the 

G-lorious tidings, good news indeed ! But WHAT is 
THIS COVENANT ? . Or what is there that is given and 
granted therein? Why, in sum, there is all that 
heaven and earth can afford, all that can be needed 
or desired ; and this, by. a firm and irrevocable deed, 
made over, and made sure to all who will sincerely 
embrace it. 

Particularly, Grod has in his covenant granted and 
made over Himself; his Son; his Spirit; the earth; 
the angels of light; the powers of darkness; death; 
the kingdom all the means of salvation. 




THE Lord Gfod has made over HIMSELF in this 
covenant. This is the great and comprehensive prom- 
ise : " I will he their God." Jer. 31 : 33. I am God ; 
and what I am is all theirs: myself, my glorious 
incomprehensible essence, all my glorious attributes, 
my omnipotence, my omniscience, my wisdom, my 
righteousness, my holiness, my all-sufficiency, my 
faithfulness. I will make over myself to them to be 
henceforth and for ever theirs : their Friend, their 
Portion, their Sun, and their Shield. 

I. THEIR FRIEND. I was angry, but mine anger 
is turned away; I was an adversary, I had a contro- 
versy with them, but I am reconciled ; I have found 
a ransom, the contest is settled, my wrath is ap- 
peased, I am their friend : "I will forgive their in- 
iquity, and I will remember their sin no more." Jer. 
31 : 34. I will take away their iniquity and receive 
them graciously; "I will heal their backsliding, I 
will love them freely ; for mine anger is turned away 
from them." Hosea 14:4. Fury is not now in 
me ; favor and friendship, love and good- will is all 
they may henceforth expect from me. " Glory be 
to God on high, on earth peace, good-will towards 

Sinners, what is there to^be feared, what is there 



dreadful, "but an angry God? Thence is sorrow 
and anguish, thence is famine, and pestilence, and 
sword ; thence is death and hell : he does not know 
what the wrath of God means, who does not see in 
it all the plagues of earth, and all the vengeance 
of eternal fire. "Whatever terrors or torments have 
seized upon thee upon thy body, upon thy soul; 
whatever losses, crosses, vexations, afflictions, plague 
thee on this earth; whatever horror and anguish, 
whatever amazing, confounding torments are like 
to meet thee and feed upon thee in the lake be- 
neath, thou mayest say of all, This is the wrath of 
G-od. When the Lord says to thee, Fury is not in 
me, he says also, Fear shall be no more to thee. The 
hour the Lord saith, I am thy friend, death and hell 
vanish; the day is broken, the shadows flee away. 
This is one thing included in the promise, "I am 
their God" I am their friend. 

II. THEIR PORTION. Fury ceases ; fears vanish ; 
friendship, favor, life are granted. But what shall 
the soul have to live upon ? Man was never intended 
to be self-sufficient ; he was created under a neces- 
sity of dependence on something without him, not 
only for the continuance of his being, but for the 
comfort of his being ; he cannot live upon the air, 
though he hath escaped the fire : the soul of man is 
too big for all the world ; like Noah's dove, it can find 
no rest below ; and where shall it find it, or on what 
shall it subsist? Why, God will not starve his 
friends ; he who has saved their lives will find them 
a livelihood; he himself will be their portion, their 


maintenance, and their heritage for evet. As their 
deliverance is from him, so their dependence shall be 
on him ; he is their substance, and on him is their 
subsistence; he writes himself "the portion of 
Jacob," Jer. 10, 16, and as such his saints accept 
him, " The Lord is the portion of mine inheritance," 
Psa. 16 : 5 ; he is their bread and their water, their 
stock and their store. The Lord gives portions to his 
enemies : not only the young ravens, but the. old lions 
and tigers ; the worst of men seek their meat from 
God; they "have their portion in this life, whose 
belly thou fillest with thy hid treasure." Psa. 17 : 14. 
They have their portion : some of them have their 
portion in the city, others a portion in the field ; to 
some he gives a portion of gold, to others a portion of 
worldly glory, to others a portion of pleasures ; with 
all these he deals as the father of the prodigal, he 
gives them their portion and sends them away. But 
while he gives portions to these, He is the portion of 
his saints: he makes over and settles -himself upon 
them, as their inheritance for ever : they shall never 
be in want while there is fulness in him. to supply 
them; they shall never be in straits while there is 
power in him to relieve them : all their wants are 
upon him. 

The Lord is their portion, and he is a sufficient 
portion. " With thee is the fountain of life." Psa. 
86. " In thy presence is fulness of joy." Psa. 16. 
The Lord God is all things to them:- " In my father's 
house there is bread enough, and to spare." He that 
has all things below (rod, but not God, has nothing ; 


he that has nothing besides God, tut has God, has all 
things ; enough and to spare; filling up, and running 
over : there is still more to be had; if more could be 
held. The soul has never enough till it has more than 
enough, is never full till it runs over never full 
while it can contain and measure and number all 
that it has : this is its judgment of all. In God is 
enough for filling up, and running over ; enough there 
is in him to fill up all their faculties. 

Their understandings. There are infinitely beau- 
tiful perfections on which we may gaze and. fill our 
eyes with unspeakable delight ; but when we have 
looked the furthest into them, when the most search- 
ing eye, the most intense thoughts have searched and 
run their utmost, they come not near the end ; they 
shall look, and look, and see, and see, and when they 
can reach no further, then they shall wonder at those 
treasures of light and beauty that are sti]l beyond 
them. Admiration is the understanding full, and 
running over : when it is nonplussed, and can reach 
no further, then it wonders at what it perceives still 
beyond it. The apostle tells us that the gospel, 
which presents God in flesh, hath in it a height, and 
depth, and length, and breadth, Eph. 3:18, and I 
may tell you from him, it is a height without top, a 
depth without bottom, a length without limits, a 
breadth without bounds; in one 'word, immensity; 
unmeasurable, and therefore unspeakable, unsearch- 
able glory. "While the blind world deride and despise 
the portion of the saints, looking on God and all the 
things of God as shallow things that have no depth 


in them, they will be found by those who search into 
them, to be deep things that have no bottom, " The 
deep things of God." 1 Cor. 2 : 10. All the raptures 
and ecstasies of the glorious joy of the saints in the 
other world break in upon them from their vision of 

There is enough to fill up their wills and affec- 
tions : there is infinite goodness, incomprehensible 
love, marvellous loving-kindness, unspeakable de- 
lights, glorious joys. " Oh, how great is thy good- 
ness, which thou hast laid up for them that fear 
thee !" Psa. 31 : 19. " Oh, how great is thy good- 
ness:" it is the voice of exultation, an admiring 
word ; great beyond expression, great beyond imagi- 
nation. " Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither 
have entered into the heart of man^the things which 
God hath prepared for them that love him :" it is the 
voice of a heart leaping for joy, rejoicing in hope of 
the glory of God which is laid up for his saints. 
" Laid up; where?" Why, laid up in himself: that 
is the fountain, that is the treasury; there is love,, 
there is joy, there is satisfaction ; .our life is hid with 
Ghrist in God. love the Lord, all ye his saints. 
bless the Lord, all ye his saints. He that is mighty 
has done for you great things : " Since the beginning 
of the world men have not heard, nor perceived by 
the ear, neither hath the eye seen, God, besides 
thee, what he hath prepared for him that waiteth 
for him." Isaiah 64 : 4. Or, as it is i-n the margin, 
".There hath not been heard or seen a God besides 
thee, which doeth so for him that waiteth for him." 


There is enough to fill up our time: there is 
admiring work, and praising work for ever ; there is 
matter for love and joy to live and feed upon for 
ever ; endless praises, eternal pleasures, everlasting 
rejoicings, ' " everlasting joy," " pleasures for ever- 
more." There is enough to reward all our labors, 
and repay all our expenses ; there is a full reward. . 
" Fear not, Abraham; I am thy shield and thy ex- 
ceeding great reward." Gen. 15 : 1. Christian, thou 
shalt not serve the Lord for naught, he will reward 
thee : and it is little in his eyes that thou shouldest 
serve him for com and for wine, for sheep and for 
oxen, yea, for the crowns and kingdoms of this world ; 
these shall not be thy hire ; the everlasting God will 
be thy reward, thine exceeding great reward ; exceed- 
ing not thy work only, but thy very thoughts also. 
A little is too much for thy earnings, but the whole 
world is too little for his bounty. . Less than nothing 
might satisfy for thy labors, but less than himself 
will not satisfy for his love : the eternal God will be 
thy reward. Oh, the unsearchable riches of the poor- 
est of saints. Poor ; what, and yet hast a God ? In 
want; what, and yet hast all things? Is he GOD 
that is thine, and art thou still in straits ? Would a 
few sheep and oxen, vineyards and olive-yards make 
the*e a rich man, and can God leave thee a beggar ? 
Is not a pearl more than pebbles; milk and wine 
better than mud and water ? Men use to say, Money 
is all things meat, and drink, and clothes, and 
friends, and land virtually all things. And is not 
God more than money ? Sure he has said to his gold, 


" Thou art my god," who cannot say, Let God be 
mine, and then go thou thy way. Hast thou a G-od, 
and yet art thou poor ? Nay, further, would the fat- 
ness of the earth and the fulness of heaven, if thou 
hadst both, be enough for thee? "Would 'corn, and 
wine, and houses, and lands, and pleasures here, and 
eternal life hereafter suffice thee ? And is not G-od 
alone as much as all this? Dost thou want star- 
light when thou hast the sun ? Is the ocean more 
full for the rivers that run into it ? Or would there 
be any want there, if all these were stopped and dry? 
Can they contribute to it which have their rise from 
it? Has the Almighty God a self-sufficiency, and 
has he not enough to satisfy a poor worm? Is he 
blessed in himself, and mayest not thou be blessed in 
him ? He that thinks any thing less than God will 
suffice, understands not a soul ; and he that wants 
any thing more, understands not God. God alone is 
as much as God and all the world ; and this is the 
heritage of the servants of the Lord, God is their 

If enough be not yet said, look awhile, and con- 
sider whence thou art taken up into this blessedness. 
What hast thou left! "What an exchange hast thou 
made ! Thou wert taken with the prodigal from the 
trough, with the beggar from the dunghill, yea, as a 
brand out of the burning ; there thy lot had fallen. 
Oh, where hast thou left the rest of the world ? Bless- 
ing themselves in vanity, pleasing themselves with 
shadows and apparitions, feeding on ashes, warming 
themselves at their painted fire, sporting themselves 


with the \vind 3 rejoicing in a thing of naught : their 
crackling thorns, their flattering pleasures, their drink- 
ings and dancings and roarings, their horses and their 
dogs, their hawks and their harlots; making a shift 
awhile to make merry with these while they are 
hastening to the pit, to that fire and brimstone which 
is the portion of their cup. 

Consider, what is the chaff to the wheat ? "What 
is a comet to the sun ? "What is the night to the day ? 
What are bubbles and children's toys to the durable 
riches ? What are things that are not, to him whose 
name is I AM ? But Oh, what are death and wrath 
and the curse, which were once all thy heritage, to 
that life and love and peace and joy and glory, which 
thou now possessest in that God who is thy portion ? 
What a poor wretch wert thou once, when thou hadst 
nothing but sin and shame and misery that thou 
couldst call thine own. These thou mightest call 
thine sin was thine, woe was thine, death and the 
grave and the curse and the pit were thine own ; but 
that was all thou hadst : thy good things thou livedst 
upon, had they been of ever so great value, were none 
of thine ; thy house and thy lands are none of thine ; 
thy gold and thy silver and thy substance are none 
of thine ; they are all but borrowed, or committed to 
thee as a steward, and all to be given up on demand ; 
and what thou hast spent of them thou must be 
brought to a reckoning for: a poor wretch thou wert, 
and hadst just nothing; for all that thou hadst was 
none of thine. 

But now, God is thine own, all that he is, all that 


he has is thine ; never could st thou lay such a claim 
to any thing thou possessedst; to house, or wife, or 
child, or hody, or soul, as now thou rnayest to thy 
God. God is as -surely thine as thou art thyself: as 
sure as thou art a man, thou hast a God. 

Come, Christian, here is now thy portion; the 
light of thine eyes,- the lifting up of thy head, the joy 
of thy heart, the strength of thy bones, thy stock, thy 
treasure, thy life, thy health, thy peace, thy rest, thine 
all : "Whom have I in heaven, but thee? and there, is 
none upon earth that I desire besides thee. My flesh 
and my heart faileth ; but God is the strength of my 
heart, and my portion for ever." Psalm 73 : 25, 26. 
Here is thy portion, know it for thy good, take it for 
thine own ; live upon it, and live up to it. 

1. Live upon thy portion. Here thou mayest feed, 
herein thou .mayest rejoice, herein thou mayest bless 
thyself for ever. "Let him that blesseth himself on 
the earth, bless himself in the God of truth." Let 
him that rejoiceth in the earth, rejoice in the God of 
truth. Let the strong man live upon his strength, let 
the wise man live upon his wits, let the rich man live 
upon his lands ; but come thou, live upon thy God ; 
come, enjoy God and thy soul ; enjoy God in thy soul, 
enjoy thy soul in God. Thou hast possession, what 
should hinder thy fruition? In fruition, the schools 
tell us, there are three things which go to make it up : 
knowledge, delight, and satisfaction. 

Knowledge. According to the clearness or cloudi- 
ness of our apprehensions of any good, we more or 
less take the pleasure or comfort of it ; and therefore 


the full fruition of God is not till at last, when we 
shall know as we are known. Here we see as but in 
a glass, and darkly ; we know but in part, and while 
we know but in part, we love but in part and joy but 
in part ; the dimness of our sight makes an abatement 
of our joy. When the veil shall be taken away, when 
we shall come to see face to face, then we shall fully 
feel what it is to have a God. Christian, know thou. 
the God of thy fathers ; the more thou knowest, the 
more thou hast. 

The carnal world enjoy not God at all ; God is not 
known in their tabernacles : in Judah is God known, 
his name is great in Israel ; at Salem is his taber- 
nacle, and his dwelling hi Zion. But what of God in 
Edom, or Ammon, or Amalek, or Egypt; those dark 
regions wherein neither sun nor star appears ? Leave 
them to their dunghill gods, to the gardens which 
they have desired and the oaks which they have cho- 
sen. The Lord is before thee, know it for thy good. 
Study thy God, Christian ; roll over his sweetness in 
thy mind, as thou dost the sweet morsel in thy mouth ; 
see what he is, and what thou hast laid up in him ; 
read over daily his glorious names; walk through 
those chambers of his presence, his glorious attri- 
butes. Look into the chamber of Ms power, and see 
what thou hast laid up for thee there. Go into the 
chamber of his wisdom, and see what that will afford 
thee. Look into the chambers of his goodness, mercy, 
faithfulness, holiness, and behold what treasures are 
laid up for thee in each of these. Enter into thy 
chambers, they are all thine ; let thine eye be there, 


let thy meditation be there, let thy soul be there every 
day ; there is thy portion, search it out and know it 
for thy good. 

Delight. Fruition is taking the pleasure of what 
we have. "We cannot enjoy what we do not love, and 
love implies delight. We cannot enjoy that wherein 
we do not joy. " Delight thyself in the Lord." Psa. 
37:4. "I sat down under his shadow with great 
delight." Sol. Song 2:3. If his shadow be so pleas- 
ant, what will his sunbeams be? "0 taste, and see 
that the Lord is good." Psa. 34 : 8. Our senses help 
our understandings ; we cannot by the most rational 
discourse perceive what the sweetness of honey is ; 
taste it, and you shall perceive it. "His fruit was 
sweet unto my taste." Dwell in the light of the 
Lord, and let thy soul be always ravished with his 
love. Get out the marrow and the fatness that thy 
portion yields thee. Let fools learn by beholding thy 
face, how dim their blazes are to the brightness of 
thy day. 

Let thy delights in Gfod be pure and unmixed 
delights. Let thy spirit be so filled with (rod, and 
so raised above carnal joys, that it be no damp upon 
thee to have nothing but Grod. Live above, in that 
serene air which is not defiled with earthly exhala- 
tions. Sickly bodies, and so sickly souls cannot live 
in too pure an air. Be so wholly spiritual, that spir- 
itual joys, spiritual delights may be suited to thee 
and sufficient for .thee. Do not say, I want the joy 
of the vintage and of the harvest ; I want the joy of 
the bridegroom and of the bride ; I want the sound of 


the millstones and tlie light of the candle, to make 
my comfort full. Let -the joy of the Lord he thy 
strength and thy life; say with the prophet, "Al- 
though the fig-tree shall not blossom, neither shall 
fruit be in the vines ; the labor of the olive shall fail, 
and the fields shall yield no meat ; the flock shall be 
cut off from the fold, and there shall be no herd in the 
stalls ; yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will joy in the 
God of my salvation." Hab. 3 : 17, 18. 

Satisfaction. The quiet, or resting of the soul in 
its portion. Therefore the schools say that the last 
end only is the proper object of fruition. The carnal 
world, whatever they possess, cannot be said properly 
to enjoy it, though it be their god that they live upon ; 
as their drag is their god, their gold is their god, then* 
plough and their plenty and their pleasure is their 
god ; they burn incense to them, yet they cannot en- 
joy them; there is no rest for them in their god. 
"What man is he that feareth the Lord? his soul 
shall dwell at ease." Psa. 25 : 12, 13. In the original 
it is, "shall lodge in goodness." The soul is never at 
ease while it is in want, every want wrings it; it 
can never take up its lodging where it cannot take its 
rest. His soul shall be at ease ; shall lodge, that is, 
shall take up its rest in the goodness of G-od : when 
we find rest in our beds, then we enjoy them. Is thy 
soul lodged in God ? enjoy thy lodging. " Return 
to thy rest, my soul, for the Lord hath dealt boun- 
tifully with thee." As it was said to, so let it be said 
by the church and every saint, " This is my rest, here 
will I dwell for ever." Here thou mayest find rest 


when tliou hast no other rock to lean upon; thou 
mayest be at rest in thy Grod, in thy most restless 
state, in a weary land, in a barren wilderness, in a 
tempestuous ocean. However it was in the vision of 
the prophet, yet thou mayest say, If the wind, rise, 
the Lord is in the wind ; if after the wind an earth- 
quake, the Lord is in the earthquake; if after the 
earthquake a fire, the Lord God is in the fire; and 
wherever thou findest God, thou. mayest find rest. If 
thou find God in a wilderness, thou wilt find rest in 
the wilderness ; if thou find God in the earthquake, or 
the tempest, or the fire, even there also thy soul shall 
find rest. When thou canst not rest in thy bed, nor 
in thy house, nor in thy land, thou mayest still, rest 
in thy God. Say, Christian, say again, "Return to 
thy rest, my soul, for the Lord hath dealt bounti- 
fully with thee." Though my helps fail me, and my 
friends fail me, and my flesh and my heart fail me, 
" God is the strength of my heart and my portion for 
ever. This is my rest, here will I dwell for ever." 

To these I might add a fourth thing wherein fru- 
ition consists the making 1 use of our portion. He 
\ enjoys, who uses what he has. We enjoy our por- 
1 tion, when we have a power and heart to make use 
of it on all occasions. "I am thine, soul; come and 
make use of me as thou wilt, thou mayest freely ; I 
have nothing that is not for thee ; thou mayest freely 
come to my store ; and the oftener, the better welcome." 
Have thou not a God lying by thee to no purpose ; let- 
not thy God be as others' gods, serving only for a 
show. Have not a name only that thou hast a God : 


since he allows thee, having such a Friend, use him . 
daily: "My God shall supply all your wants;" never 
want while thou hast a God, never fear or faint while 
thou hast a G-od : go to thy treasure, and take what- 
ever thou needest; there are bread and clothes, and 
health and life, and all that thou needest. 0, Chris- 
tian, learn the divine skill to make God thine all, to 
find in thy God bread and water and health and 
friends and ease ; he can supply thee with all these ; 
or, which is better, he can be, instead of all these, thy 
food, thy clothing, thy friend, thy life. All this he - 
has said to thee in this one word, "I am thy God;", 
and hereupon thou mayest say, I have no husband,; 
and yet I am no widow ; my Maker is my husband. 
I have no father nor friend, and yet I am neither fa- 
therless nor friendless ; my God is both my Father and 
my Friend. I have no child ; but is not he better to 
me than ten children ? I have no house, but yet I 
have a home ; I have made the Most High my habita- ; 
tion. I am left alone, but yet I am not alone ; my! 
God is good company for me ; with him I can walk, 
with him I can take sweet counsel, find sweet repose ; 
at my lying down, at my rising up, while I am in- 
the house, as I walk by the way, my God is ever with; 
me ; with him I travel, I dwell, I lodge, I live, and , 
shall live for ever. 

2. Live up to your privilege. Live according to - 
your rank and quality, according to your riches laid 
up for you in God. The rich men of this world live 
like rich men, they sort themselves with persons of 
their own quality, attend on the courts of princes, are 



employed about the palace; you may read their 
estates in the whole way of their life; they wear 
them on their hacks, spread their tables with them ; 
they live sumptuously, and fare delicately. Chris- 
tians, feed not on ashes or husks, yon have better 
meat; you have milk and honey, marrow and fat- 
ness, the hidden manna, the bread that comes down 
from heaven, the water of life ; you have blessed priv- 
ileges > precious promises, lively hopes, living comforts, 
[j ; glorious joys, the fountain of life to feed your souls 
1 upon : come eat, friends ; drink, yea, drink abun- 
dantly, beloved; outfare the rich man, who fared 
sumptuously every day ; you have enough to main- 
tain it ;~ let every day be a glad day, a feast-day with 
you. '. 

Let your clothing be according to your feeding. 

Be clothed with the sun ; put on the Lord Jesus. 

; "The King's daughter is" and so let all the King's 

sons be "all glorious within;" let their clothing be 

, of wrought gold. Be clothed with humility, put on 

love, bowels of compassion, gentleness, meekness ; put 

/ ; on the garments of salvation. 

Let your company and converse be according to 

your clothing. Live among the excellent, among 

; the generation of the just. G-et you up to the " gen- 

- eral assembly and church of the first-born," to that 

"innumerable company of angels, and to the spirits 

of just men made perfect." Live in the courts of the 

great King, behold his face, wait at his throne, bear 

his name, show forth his virtues, set forth his praises, 

advance his honor, uphold his interest : let vile per- 


since lie allows tliee, having such a Friend, use Iiim 
daily: "My (rod shall supply all your wants;" never 
want while thou hast a God, never fear or faint while 
thou hast a God : go to thy treasure, and take what- 
ever thou needest; there are tread and clothes, and 
health and life, and all that thou needest. 0, Chris- 
tian, learn the divine skill to make God thine all, to 
find in thy God bread and water and health and 
friends and ease ; he can supply thee with all these ; 
or, which is better, he can be, instead of all these, thy 
food, thy clothing, thy friend, thy life. All this he 
has said to thee in this one word, "I am thy God;" 
and hereupon thou mayest say, I have no husband, 
and yet I am no widow ; my Maker is my husband. 
I have no father nor friend, and yet I am neither fa- 
therless nor friendless ; my God is both my Father and 
my Friend. I have no child ; but is not he better to 
me than ten children ? I have no house, but yet I 
have a home ; I have made the Most High my habita- 
tion. I am left alone, but yet I am not alone ; my 
God is good company for me ; with him I can walk, 
with him I can take sweet counsel, find sweet repose ; 
at my lying down, at my rising up, while I am in 
the house, as I walk by the way, my God is ever with 
me ; with him I travel, I dwell, I lodge, I live, and 
shall live for ever. 

2. Live up to your privilege. Live according to 
your rank and quality, according to your riches laid 
up for you in God. The rich men of this world live 
like rich men, they sort themselves with persons of 
fcheir own quality, attend on the courts of princes, are 



employed about the palace; you may read their 
estates in the whole way of their life; they wear 
them on their backs, spread their tables with them ; 
they live sumptuously, and fare delicately. Chris- 
tians, feed not on ashes or husks, you have better 
meat; you have milk and honey, marrow and fat- 
ness, the hidden manna, the bread that comes down 
from heaven, the water of life ; you have blessed priv- 
ileges, precious promises, lively hopes, living comforts, 
glorious joys, the fountain of life to feed your souls 
upon: come eat, friends; drink, yea, drink abun- 
dantly, beloved ; outfare the rich man, who fared 
sumptuously every day ; you have enough to main- 
tain it ; let every day be a glad day, a feast-day with 

Let your clothing be according to your feeding. 
Be clothed with the sun; put on the Lord Jesus. 
"The King's daughter is" and so let all the King's 
sons be "all glorious within;" let their clothing be 
of wrought gold. Be clothed with humility, put on 
love, bowels of compassion, gentleness, meekness ; put 
on the garments of salvation. 

Let your company and converse be according to 
your clothing. Live among the excellent, among 
the generation of the just. G-et you up to the "gen- 
eral assembly and church of the first-born," to that 
"innumerable company of angels, and to the spirits 
of just men made perfect." Live in the courts of the 
great King, behold his face, wait at his throne, bear 
his name, show forth his virtues, set forth his praises, 
advance his honor, uphold his interest : let vile per- 


sons and vile ways be contemned in your eyes ; be 
of more raised spirits than to be companions with 
them. Learn hence a holy elevation of spirit. Re- 
gard not their society nor their scorns, their flatteries 
or their frowns ; rejoice not with their joys, fear not 
their fear, care not for their care, feed not on their 
dainties ; get you up from among them, to your coun- 
try, to your city, where no unclean thing can enter 
or annoy. Live by faith, in the power of the Spirit, 
in the beauty of holiness, in the hope of the gospel, in 
the joy of your God, in the magnificence, and yet the 
humility, of the children of the great King. 

III. HE is THEIR SUN. He will discover and make 
manifest to them the riches and glory of their portion. 
He has granted them himself for their portion, and he 
will reveal and make manifest to them what a portion 
he is. He will make manifest both the blessedness 
they shall enjoy in him, and the way to it, and also 
the dangers that lie in the way. "The Lord God is 
a sun." Psalm 84 : 11. The sun is the light of the 
world, it discovers itself and all things else. We can- 
not see the glory of the sun but by its own light ; the 
moon, the planets, the firmament, and all this lower 
world would disappear, if the sun withdrew its light. 
Beauty and deformity, safety and danger, the right 
way and the wrong, are all brought to view by the 
light of the sun ; the sunlight makes the day ; night 
is spread over the world when the sun is set. So God 
is glorious ; but who would be ever the wiser, did not 
this glory shine ? " In thy light shall we see light." 
Psa. 36 : 9. "Why is the glorious Grod apprehended, 


understood, admired, lay so few among the sons of 
Because he is out of sight ; the sun is not 


risen upon them, nor shines unto them : they have 
moonlight or starlight, some dimmer reflections of this 
glory at second-hand ; but they see not the sun. 

What is the reason that truth and falsehood, good 
and. evil, substances and shadows, things perishing 1 
and things permanent, are no better distinguished ? 
What is the reason that men are so mistaken and 
misguided in their judgments, in their choice, in their 
way; that they are at such a loss, such wanderers 
from their bliss ? What is the reason that men's own 
sparks, the light of their qwn fires, their candlelight 
or torchlight, their fleshly imaginations, their carnal 
prosperity, their pleasures, their ease, their earthly 
glory, and their carnal joys that hence flash up to 
them, are so adored and admired by them ? 0, they 
see not the sun. God is out of sight ; and thence are 
all their foolish mistakes and miscarriages.- Grod will 
be a sun to his saints. "Thy sun shall no more go 
down." They shall have a right to the comfort of 
this glorious sun ; he will show them his face, he will 
cause his glory to appear, he will lead them into him- 
self by his own beams ; he will show them their end, 
and the means the goal, and their way to it ; he will 
show them the good part, and the right path ; good 
and evil, duties, and sins, realities and delusions, helps 
and hinderarices, dangers and advantages, their snares 
and their succors, will all be discovered to them by 
the light of the Lord. 

Hearken, thou poor and dark soul, that hast oho- 

Hsavcn Opcnp4. 2 


sen, but thou knowest not what ; that art going, but 
thou knowest not whither ; that art wandering and 
stumbling on, but thou oarest not how; that corn- 
plainest thou canst not see, thou canst not value, thou 
canst not be affected with all the glory and joy of the 
invisible world ; that findest thy husks and thy trash 
to be a greater pleasure to thee than all the riches of 
immortality ; that would est fain mind and choose and. 
love and relish and seels: God and things above, but 
thou canst not : thou seest so little . of the beauty of 
them, that they do not entice thy heart after them ; 
and when thou art seeking, thou art at a loss and in 
the dark as to the way that thou shouldest take. 
Hearken, soul, thy God calls to thee: Come unto 
rne, look unto me, and I will be thy sun ; I will show 
thee all that glory, and the right way that will bring 
thee to it ; I promise thee I will ; trust me, I will be 
a light unto thee. 

IV. THEIR SHIELD. "The Lord God is a sun and 
a shield." Psa. 84 : 11. The gods of the earth are 
styled, "the shields of the earth," Psa. 47 : 9; much 
more the God of glory. Faith is called a shield: 
"Above all, taking the shield of faith." Eph. 6 : 16. 
This signifies the same as " God is a shield." Faith is 
to the soul whatever God is. This is the grace that 
entitles the soul to God, and applies God to the soul. 
" Fear not, Abraham ; I am thy shield." Gen. 15 : 1. 
"What is promised to the father of the faithful, stands 
sure to all the seed. Rom. 4 : 16. The state of Chris- 
tians in this life is a militant state, a state full of 
hardships and hazards ; by reason whereof, richly 


as they are provided for, they are subject to fears of 
"being undone and spoiled of all. They are in fears 
about things eternal ; they have spiritual adversaries 
that lie in wait for their souls, that fight against their 
souls, that are tempting them, and enticing them from 
their God; that watch their opportunities to steal 
away their God, by stealing away their hearts from 
him ; and such dangerous attempts of this kind they 
meet withal, that they often are in great doubt what 
the issue may be. They are in fears about things 
temporal ; their names are shot at, their liberties are 
invaded, their estates, with all the comforts of their 
lives, are in danger to be made a prey ; to-day they are 
a praise, to-morrow a scorn ; to-day they are full and 
abound, to-morrow they may have nothing left ; they 
die daily; they are "killed all the day long." But 
whatever their dangers and their fears are, here is suffi- 
cient provision made against all : Gfod is their shield. 
Christian, thou hast enough, and all that thou hast 
is in safety. Thou art compassed about with a shield, 
secured on all hands, there is no coming at thee to do 
thee harm. Whatever assaults are made, thy G-od is 
a wall of partition between thee and harm. They are 
not shields of brass and iron thou art furnished with ; 
the strong God is thy defence. Wherefore dost thou 
doubt, thou of little faith? A Christian, and yet 
afraid; shifting for thyself; taking care for the asses 
and oxen and sheep; vexing and loading and losing 
thyself, in thy cares and fears from day to day ? Where 
is thy God, man ? Doth not God take care for oxen 
-and asses and all that thou hast ? 

28 ' HE A YEN OPENED." ' 

But 0, what meanest thou by this ? To "be shift- 
ing thyself from danger, by shrinking hack from thy 
God ; securing thyself from affliction, by taking sanc- 
tuary in iniquity ! What art thou doing hut throwing 
away thy shield to save thee from harm ; making a 
breach in thy wall, to keep thee in safety? "Walk 
before me, and he thou perfect," saith G-od; and then, 
" Fear not, Abraham ; I am thy shield." den. 15 : 1 ; 
17 : 1. This now is the first and great promise of the 
covenant, "I am thy Grod." 




GOD has put Christ into the covenant, and made 
him over to his people : "I will give thee for a cove- 
nant." Isa. 42 : 6. He who is promised as the chief 
matter, the mediator, surety, and scope of the cove- 
nant, is called, The Covenant. "I will give thee for 
a covenant;" that is, I covenant to give thee to the 

Dost thou say, "Whatever glory and blessedness 
there is in the fruition of God, woe is me, there is a 
great gulf fixed between rne and it, over which there 
is no passing; there is a partition- wall raised, over 
which there is no climbing ; there is a handwriting 
against me, and while that stands, all that is in God 
is nothing to me. Were this Grod mine, I had enough. 
Let me be put to labor or to suffering ; let me dig, or 
beg, or starve and die ; whether I be rich or poor, have 
something or nothing, be a praise or a reproach, it 
matters not, if God be mine. But 0, how may I ob- 
tain this ? Who shall bring me to God ?" 

The Lord God hath given thee his Son to undertake 
for thee, and to be thy way unto the Father. Heb. 
10 : 19, 20. JESUS CHRIST who is the Morning-star, 
the Sun of righteousness,- the image of the invisible 
God, the first-born of every creature, by whom are all 


things, who is before all things, the head of the body 
the church; who is the beginning, the first-born from 
the dead, in whom dwells all fulness, even the fulness 
of the godhead bodily; who has made peace by the 
blood of his cross, Colossians, chs. 1, 2; whose name is, 
"Wonderful, Counsellor, the mighty God, the ever- 
lasting Father, the Prince of peace," Isa. 9 : 6 this 
Jesus is granted thee in the covenant, to bring thee to 
God. To which blessed and glorious purpose he is 
exhibited as the Light of life; as the Lord our right- 
eousness; as our Lord and King; and as our Head 
and Husband. 

I. As the LIGHT OP LIFE. "A light to lighten the 
Gentiles, and the glory of thy people Israel." Luke 
2 : 32. "In him was life, and the life was the light 
of men." John 1:4. "He that foUoweth me shall 
have the light of life." John 8 : 12. There is a light 
that serves to kill and destroy, to bring death and 
condemnation to light : the light of the law, that kill- 
ing letter concerning which the apostle says, "When 
the commandment came, sin revived, and I died ; the 
commandment which was ordained to life, I found -to 
be unto death." Rom. 7 : 9, 10. But Christ brings 
life and immortality to light. Heaven, glory, the in- 
visible God, which are lost out of reach and out of 
ken, are all discovered in the face of Jesus Christ; 
" To give the light of the knowledge of the glory of 
God in the face of Jesus Christ." 2 Cor. 4 : 6. He 
is the image of the invisible God, the brightness of his 
Father's glory, the glass in which by reflection we see 
the sun. " Show us the Father, and it sufficeth us." 


"Why, says he, hast thou known me, Philip, and yet 
sayest thou, Show us the Father ? "He that hath seen 
me, hath seen the Father;" and this is the light of 
life. John 14 : 8, 9. " This is life eternal, that they 
might know thee the only true Grod, and Jesus Christ 
whom thou hast sent." John 17 : 3. 

name: "He shall be called, The Lord our righteous- 
ness." Jer. 23 : 6. To this end he is given to us, 

1. As out propitiatory sacrifice: "The propitia- 
tion for our sins." 1 John, 2:2. "Christ our pass- 
over." 1 Cor. 5:7. " The Lamb slain from the foun- 
dation of the world." Rev. 13 : 8. Our price, our 
ransom, to satisfy justice, pacify wrath, discharge 
from the curse; to blot out the handwriting, break 
down the wall of partition; to finish the transgression, 
to make an end of sins, to make reconciliation for 
iniquity, to bring in everlasting righteousness, and so 
to bring us to Grod. Whatever difficulties appear in 
thy way, whatever doubts arise in thy heart, from thy 
sins, from thy guilt, from thy poverty, from thy im- 
potence whatever objections thy fears may hence put 
in, the blood of the Lamb will answer all. Christ 
our passover is sacrificed for us. 

2. As a merciful and faithful High-priest, Heb. 
2 : 17, who has made an atonement for us in the 
earth, and appears for us in heaven ; who has made 
reconciliation for us, and makes intercession for us, 
"to appear in the presence of God for us." Heb. 
9 : 24. We read, Exodus 28 : 12, 29, that Aaron, 
as the type of Christ, was to bear the names of the 


children of Israel engraven in stones upon his shoul- 
ders and upon his "breastplate, when he went into the 
holy place, for a memorial before the Lord contin- 
ually. Our Lord is entered into the heavens, to ap- 
pear in the presence of God with our names upon his 
shoulders and upon his heart, for a memorial before 
the Lord : the least of saints has his name there en- 

"Here is my ransom, Lord," saith Christ, "and 
"behold my ransomed ones. Here is my price and my 
purchase, my redemption and my redeemed. What- 
ever accusers there be, whatever charge be laid against 
them, whatever guilt lies upon them, here are the 
shoulders that have borne all that was their d.ue, and 
paid all that they owe ; and upon these shoulders and 
in this heart thou mayest read all their names ; and 
when thou readest, remember what I have done for 
them, acquit and absolve them, and let them be ac- 
cepted before thee for ever. Remember the tears of 
these eyes, the stripes on this back, the shame of this 
face, the groans of this body, the anguish of this soul, 
the blood of this heart ; and when thou rememberest, 
whatever name thou findest engraven upon this heart 
and upon these shoulders, they are the persons whose 
all these are; and whatever these are, whatever ac- 
ceptance they have found with thee, whatever satis- 
faction thou hast found in them, put it upon their 
account; never let me be accounted thine Accepted, 
if they be rejected ; never let me be accounted right- 
eous, if they lie under the imputation of wicked. li 
they be not righteous in my righteousness, I must be 


guilty under their guilt. "Whatever I am, whatever 
my satisfaction is, all is theirs ; for them I plead, for 
them I pray; my tears, stripes, wounds, groans, 
anguish, soul, Hood, all cry and say, Father, forgive 
them; Father, accept them." 

Of all cries there are no such strong cries as the 
cry of Wood, and that whether it he against or for 
the guilty; its voice shall he heard on high. "Thy 
brother's hlood crieth unto me from the ground." 
Gen. 4. And what followed ? "Woe to those persons 
against whom hlood crieth. But where hlood, such 
blood cries for them, for pardon, for mercy, "blessed 
are those souls. 

Christian, this blood is for thee: it "speaketh bet- 
ter things than that of Abel." Heh. 12 : 24. It pleads, 
sues, presses for thy discharge from all that is upon 
thee. Thou hast many cries against thee : Satan 
cries, thy sins cry, thine own heart and conscience 
cry against thee, and thou art amazed at the dread- 
ful noise they make; but behold, the blood of the 
Lamb, who is God, cries for thee. Thou hast an 
accuser, but thou hast an Acquitter ; thou hast adver- 
saries, but thou hast an Advocate: "An Advocate 
with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous, who is 
the propitiation for our sins." 1 John, 2 : 1, 2. "Who 
shall lay any thing to the charge of G-od's elect ? It 
is God that justifieth. Who is he that condemneth? 
It is Christ that died, yea, rather, that is risen again, 
who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh 
intercession for us." Rom. 8 : 33, 34. 

Nay, further, thou hast not only a righteous, but 



a merciful High-priest, that is provided with a sacri- 
fice, and hath a heart to offer it for thee; thy name 
is in his heart as well as on his shoulders, in his 
bowels as well as on his hack. He hath blood for 
thee, precious blood; and he Imth bowels for thee, 
bowels of mercy. He can have pity and compassion 
021 the miserable. Heb. 5:2. If he can find no 
other, he can find arguments enough from thy woe 
and thy misery to draw forth his soul towards thee. 
He is merciful, and his mercies are tender mercies ; 
he is pitiful, and his compassions are tender compas- 
sions : thou art not so tender of the wife of thy bosom, 
of thine own child thou art not so tender of thine 
own flesh, of the apple of thine eye, of thine own soul, 
as thy Lord is of thee. His Spirit is moved for thee, 
his soul melts over thee, he bleeds in thy wounds, he 
suffers in thy sorrows, his eye weeps, his heart breaks 
over thy broken and undone state ; fear not his for- 
getting thee. 

He is a merciful and a faithful High-priest. No 
dignity to which he is exalted above thee, no distance 
to which he is removed from thee, can make him for- 
get his friends ; he is gone into the heavens, and is 
there exalted far above all principalities and powers, 
and set down at the right hand of Grod. He is gone, 
but he hath carried thy name with him as a perpet- 
ual memorial for thee. Thou art unfaithful ; shame 
to thee ! thou forgettest thy Lord at every turn ; 
every business that comes, every trouble that comes, 
every pleasure that comes, every companion that 
comes, makes thee forget thy Lord, forget his love, 


forget thy duty: 0, how s'mall a matter will steal 
thy heart from him ; yea, stir up tumults and rebel- 
lions against him. Thy comforts, thy hopes, thy 
needs which thou hast daily from him, will not all 
prevail to hold him in remembrance with thee. Thou 
forgettest thy Lord, but he will not forget thee ; though 
thou hast been unfaithful in many things, yet he is in 
nothing. " Yet he abideth faithful ; he cannot deny 
himself." 2 Tim. 2 : 13. He would not be true to 
himself, if he be not faithful to thee ; his interest lies 
in thee ; thou art his, his possession, a member of his 
body, fear not ; if he should be unfaithful to thy soul, 
he is therein unfaithful to his own body. If thy case 
be such that he can help thee, if there be any thing 
wherein he can stead thee if all that he has, his 
blood, his righteousness, his interest with the Father, 
will be sufficient for thy help, he has undertaken to 
procure it for thee and secure it to thee. Faithful is 
he that has called you, and will do it. 

This now is that Jesus who is given unto us, as 
our propitiatory Sacrifice, as our merciful and faith- 
-ful High-priest, who suffered on the earth, and is 
gone into the heavens for us; standing in his red 
robes, garments rolled in blood with the glorious 
white inscribed upon the red pardon, peace, absolu- 
tion, acceptance ; with the names of his ransomed 
ones engraven upon his heart and upon his shoul- 
ders : this is that Jesus, who is THE LORD OUR RIGHT- 
EOUSNESS. ' * . 

III. As OUR LORD AND KING. " A King shall reign 
in righteousness," and in him shall the Gentiles trust. 


" Shout, daughter of Jerusalem, "behold thy King 
oometh." Zech. 9 : 9. "The government shall be on 
his shoulder." Isa. 9 : 6. Grod hath more care of his 
saints, than to leave the government of them on their 
shoulder. Is not her King in her ? 

He is a King to gather them, a King to govern, 
them, a King to defend and save them : to save them 
from their temporal enemies, the sons of violence, the 
men of this evil world ; to save them from their spir- 
itual enemies, from their sins. " Thou shalt call his 
name Jesus, for lie shall save his people from their 
sins." Matt. 1 : 21. It is a mercy to he under gov- 
ernment and under protection. "What would become 
of us were there no King in Israel ? "Where there is 
no king, all are kings ; more kings than men : Satan 
will be a king, every 'lust will be a lord as many 
kings as there are devils and sins. "Whither would 
our unruly hearts carry us ? How easily would our 
wily and potent enemies ruin us. What tyranny 
would sin exercise within; what cruelty should we 
suffer from without. "Whither should we wander; 
where should we fix ? What peace, what order, what 
stability ? Whence should counsel and protection and 
salvation come, were there no Lord over us ? It is a 
mercy to be under government; but to be under such 
a government, under a King, and such a King ; such 
a wise and potent King, such a meek and merciful 
King, such a holy and righteous King ! Oh, what a 
wonder of mercy ! " Rejoice greatly, daughter of 
Zion; shout, daughter of Jerusalem ; behold, thy 
King cometh unto thee : he is just, and having salva- 


tion ; lowly, and riding upon an ass's colt." He is 
just, having salvation; as a Priest he hath purchased, 
as a King he bestows his salvation. He comes not to 
get, hut to give not to give laws only, but to give 
.gifts unto men; and he gives like a king, palms, 
crowns, and. thrones salvation to his people by the 
remission of their sins. Oh, how unthankful ; 0, 
how foolish is this rebellious world! Impatient of 
subjection, they shake off the yoke, groan under 
duty, under discipline : " We will not have this man 
to rule over us." Who then shall save you ? Hard 
to be a Christian ; strict laws, severe discipline, no 
liberty ! Is this thy complaint, Christian ? Nay, 
. rather, There is no liberty left me to be miserable : if 
I will be his, I must be happy. 

Let fools inherit their own folly, but let Israel 
rejoice in him that made him, let the children of Zion 
be joyful in their King ; for the Lord taketh pleasure 
in his people, he will beautify the meek with salva- 
tion. Lift up your heads, ye gates ; and be ye lifted 
up, ye everlasting doors ; and the King of glory shall 
come in. Who is this King of glory ? The Lord of 
hosts, yea, the Lord our righteousness, he is the King 
of glory. The Lord is our Judge, the Lord is our 
Lawgiver, the Lord is our King, he will save us. 
Praise ye the Lord. Come all ye Mmrods, ye mighty 
hunters on the earth ; come all ye sons of Anak, ye 
seed of the giants ; come all ye sons of Belial, ye seed 
of the adulterer ; come all ye Ishmaelites and Am- 
monites, ye Moabites and Hagarenes, associate, con- 
federate, take counsel together, smite with the tongue, 


" Shout, daughter of Jerusalem, behold thy King 
cometh." Zech. 9:9. " The government shall be on 
his shoulder." Isa. 9 : 6. Grod hath more care of his 
saints, than to leave the government of them 011 their 
shoulder. Is not her King in her ? 

He is a King to gather them, a King to govern 
them, a King to defend and save them : to save them 
from their temporal enemies, the sons of violence, the 
men of this evil world ; to save them from their spir- 
itual enemies, from their sins. " Thou shalt call his 
name Jesus, for he shall save his people from their 
sins." Matt. 1 : 21. It is a mercy to be under gov- 
ernment and under protection. What would become 
of us were there no King in Israel ? Where there is 
no king, all are kings ; more kings than men : Satan 
will be a king, every lust will be a lord as many 
kings as there are devils and sins. Whither would 
our unruly hearts carry us ? How easily would our 
wily and potent enemies ruin us. What tyranny 
would sin exercise within ; what cruelty should we 
suffer from without. Whither should we wander; 
where should we fix ? What peace, what order, what 
stability ? Whence should counsel and protection and 
salvation come, were there no Lord over us ? It is a 
mercy to be under government ; but to be under such 
a government, under a King, and such a King ; such 
a wise and potent King, such a meek and merciful 
King, such a holy and righteous King ! Oh, what a 
wonder of mercy'! " Rejoice greatly, daughter of 
Zion ; shout, daughter of Jerusalem ; behold, thy 
King cometh unto thee : he is just, and having salva- 


tion ; lowly, and riding upon an ass's colt." He is 
just, having salvation ; as a Priest he hath purchased, 
as a King he bestows his salvation. He comes not to 
get, hut to give not to give laws only, hut to give 
gifts unto men; and he gives like a king, palms, 
crowns, and thrones salvation to his people by the 
remission of their sins. Oh, how unthankful ; 0, 
how foolish is this rebellious world! Impatient of 
subjection, they shake off the yoke, groan under 
duty, under discipline : " We will not have this man 
to rule over us." Who then shall save you ? Hard 
to be a Christian; strict laws, severe discipline, no 
liberty ! Is this thy complaint, Christian ? Nay, 
rather, There is no liberty left me to be miserable : if 
I will be his, I must be happy. 

Let fools inherit their own folly, but let Israel 
rejoice in him that made him, let the children of Zion 
be joyful in their King ; for the Lord taketh pleasure 
in his people, he will beautify the meek with salva- 
tion. Lift up your heads, ye gates ; and be ye lifted 
up, ye everlasting doors ; and the King of glory shall 
come in. Who is this King of glory ? The Lord of 
hosts, yea, the Lord our righteousness, he is the King 
of glory. The Lord is our Judge, the Lord is our 
Lawgiver, the Lord is our King, he will save us. 
Praise ye the Lord. Come air ye Nimrods, ye mighty 
hunters on the earth ; come all ye sons of Anak, ye 
seed of the giants ; come all ye sons of Belial, ye seed 
of the adulterer ; come all ye Ishmaelites and Am- 
monites, ye Moabites and Hagarenes, associate, con- 
federate, take counsel together, smite with the tongue, 


bite with the teeth, push with the horn, kick with the 
heel; come all ye gates of hell, and powers of dark- 
ness ; thou dragon with all thy armies, with all thy 
fiery darts and instruments of death; come thou king 
of terrors with thy fatal dart : the virgin the daugh- 
ter of Zion has despised you all, she has laughed you 
to scorn ; the daughter of Jerusalem has shaken her 
head at you; her King is. in the midst of her; the 
Lord is her King, he will save her. 

4. As our HEAD AND HUSBAND. He that is given 
to he Head over all things to the church is given to 
"be the Head of the church, Eph. 1:22, 23, and of 
every member in particular. 1 Cor. 11 : 3. Believ- 
ers are all joined to the Lord. 1 Cor. 6 : 17. United 
in Christ as fellow-members; united unto Christ as 
their common Head, " from which all the body, by 
joints and bands, having nourishment ministered, and 
knit together, increaseth with the increase of Grod." 
Col. 2:19. They are married to Christ: "I have 
espoused you to one Husband." 2 Cor. 11 : 2. From 
this union follows a communication of influences, and 
a combination of interests. 

1; A communication of influences. " Having 
nourishment ministered." Christ our Head is our 
Fountain of life. Our Head is our Heart also, out 
of it are the issues of life ; from him we live, and are 
nourished and maintained in life. He is our Joseph, 
all the treasures of the holy land are with him. "In 
him are hid all the treasures of wisdom and know- 
ledge." Colos. 2:3. " It pleased the Father that 
in him should all fulness dwell." Colos. 1 : 19. He 


is the only begotten Son of G-od, full of grace and 

Here observe -what grace there is in Christ. The 
schools tell us, that in him there is a threefold grace. 
1. The grace of union. The human nature of Christ 
hath received the high grace or favor to be personally 
united to the second person in the godhead ; by vir- 
tue of which union the fulness of the godhead is said 
to dwell in him bodily bodily, that is, personally, or 
substantially, in opposition to the types and shadows 
of the Old Testament, in which God is said to dwell 
in a figure. God was said to dwell in the tabernacle, 
in the ark of the covenant, in the temple; but in 
these he dwelt only as figures and shadows of the 
human nature of Christ. In Christ lie dwells not in 
a figure, but personally and substantially. As Christ, 
Col. 2 : 17, is called the body, in opposition to the 
types of old, which were but the shadow ; so bodily 
here denotes not a figurative, but a personal inhabi- 
tation. Christ is the body, not a shadow; and God 
dwells in him bodily, that is, substantially, and not in 
a shadow. 2. Habitual grace. All those moral per- 
fections wherein stands the holiness of his nature : 
the love and fear of God; his humility, meekness, 
patience ; in sum, his perfect conformity to the image 
and whole will of God. " Such a High-priest became 
us, who is holy, harmless, undefiled, separate from 
sinners." Heb. 7 : 26. 3. The honor which is given 
to him to be Head of the church. 

Also observe how Christ is said to be full of 
grace. There is a twofold fulness of grace. In re- 


spect to grace itself: thus he is said to he full of 
grace, that hath all grace, and hath it in the greatest . 
excellency and perfection. Also, in respect to the 
person that hath it j and thus a person is said to be 
full of grace, that hath as much grace as he is capable 
of. Christ is full of grace in both respects : the grace 
which is in him, is grace in the highest perfection of 
it, and in infinite fulness. 

Observe also, that this fulness of Christ is ours, 
and for us : " Of his fulness have all we received, 
and grace for grace." John 1 : 16. " Your life is hid 
with Christ in God." Col. 3 : 3. Your life : that is, 
both your spiritual life, grace ; and your eternal life, 
glory. " This is the record, that Grod hath given to 
us eternal life ; and this life is in his Son." 1 John, 
5 : 11. Our life is said to be in Christ in three re- 
spects. 1. It is hid in Christ as the effect in the 
cause : as the life of the branches is hid in the root, 
so is the life of a Christian in Christ ; he is our root. 
2. It is deposited with Christ : it is laid up with him', 
committed to his trust and custody ; with him it is 
secured and put into safe hands. 3. The dispensation 
of it is committed to him: from him it is at his pleas- 
ure to be imparted to us ; of his fulness we receive. 
The Son hath life in himself, and he giveth it to whom, 
when, and in what measure he pleaseth. 

Christian, art thou nothing in thyself? Thou hast 
enough in thy Jesus. Art thou dark ? he is a foun- 
iain of light. Art thou dead? he is a fountain of 
life. Art thou poor and low, weak in knowledge, in 
faith, in love, in patience? he is a treasure of all 


grace ; and what lie is, lie is for thee. Is lie wise ? 
he is wise for thee. Is he holy ? he is holy for thee. 
Is he meek, merciful, humble, patient? he is so for 
thee. Is he strong; is he rich; is he full? it is for 
thy sake. As he was empty for thee, weak for thee, 
poor for thee ; sojbr thee he is mighty, he is rich and 
full. While thou bewailest thine own poverty and 
weakness, bless thyself in thy Lord, in his riches, 
righteousness, and strength. 

2. A combination of interests. As the head and 
body, as the husband and wife, so Christ and his 
saints are mutually concerned are rich or poor, must 
stand and fall, live and die together. As the husband 
conveys to the wife a title to what he hath ; as the 
wife holds of the husband ; so is it between Christ 
and his church : they have nothing but through him ; 
their whole tenure is in the Head ; and whatsoever is 
his, is theirs. His God is their God, his Father is 
their Father; his blood, his merits, his Spirit, his vic- 
tories, all the spoils he has gotten, all the revenue and 
income of his life and death, all is theirs. For them 
he obeyed, suffered, lived, died, rose, ascended, is set 
down in glory at the right hand of God. He obeyed 
as their Head ; died as their Head ; rose, ascended, 
reigns as their Head ; and has in their name taken 
possession of that inheritance which he purchased for 
them. This is that Jesus who is given to us, and 
thus is he granted and made over to all his saints in 
this covenant of God. 




G-OD has put his Spirit into the covenant: the 
Almighty, the eternal Spirit; the Holy Spirit, the 
Spirit of glory and of G-od. 

This holy and eternal Spirit is first poured forth 
on our Head the Lord Jesus, to anoint him our 
Redeemer, to furnish and qualify him for that great 
undertaking. "The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, 
because the Lord hath anointed me to preach good 
tidings unto the meek." Isa. 61 : 1. " The Spirit of 
the Lord shall rest upon him, the spirit of wisdom 
and understanding, and of the fear of the Lord." Isa. 

And he is promised to each member of Christ: 
"I will put my Spirit within you." Ezek. 36:27. 
To all these he is granted, as a Spirit of wisdom and 
revelation ; as a Spirit of holiness and sanetification ; 
as a Spirit of truth and direction ; and as a Spirit of 
comfort and consolation. 

I. As a " Spirit of WISDOM AND REVELATION." Eph. 
1 : 17, 18. To enlighten them, to open their blind 
eyes, and to shine into their hearts ; to give them the 
knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus 
Christ, that they may know what is the hope of his 
calling, and what the riches of the glory of his inheri- 
tance in the saints ; to counterwork the spirit of this 


world, whose work is to blind men's eyes, lest the 
light of the glorious gospel should shine unto them. 
2 Cor. 4 : 4-6. 

This is he by whom the Father hath called us 
"out of darkness into his marvellous light." 1 Pet. 
2 : 9. The light that the Spirit brings in is a marvel- 
lous light, and that in three respects : 

1. It is a marvellous thing that ever light should 
come into such dark souls. That those who were 
born blind, and upon whom the god of this world 
had, for many years together, been trying his skill to 
thicken their darkness, to increase and seal them up 
under it that ever such eyes should be opened, and 
the light of life shine in upon such hearts, this is a 
marvellous thing. When our Lord Jesus in the days 
of his flesh opened the eyes of those who had been 
born blind, the people ran together and wondered at 
the sight. If you should see stones live, if you should 
see dead stocks or dry bones walk up and down the 
streets, if you should see trees, or houses, or moun- 
tains full of eyes, this were not more full of wonder, 
than to behold blind sinners receiving their sight. 
Thou wert once darkness; art thou now light in the 
Lord ? Stand and wonder at thy cure. 

2. They are marvellous things which this light 
discovers. It is a wonder that such eyes should ever 
see at all ; and lo, they see wonders. The gospel is 
a mystery full of wonders: there are heights, and 
depths, and lengths, and breadths. "We have seen 
strange things to-day :" strange love, strange grace, 
wonderful wisdom, wonderful pity, patience, mercy; 


wonderful providences, wonderful deliverances, incom- 
prehensible excellences, unspeakable joy and glory. 
It is a wonder there should be such things every day 
before our eyes, and yet we could not see them till 
now; and it is a wonder, that when we did not see 
them before, we should ever see them now that those 
things which we despised, derided, mocked at, stum- 
bled at, as mere foolishness and fancy, we should now 
see and admire, even to astonishment that that Jesus 
who was to the Jews a stumbling-block, to the Greeks 
foolishness, should be to the same men when called, 
the wisdom of God and the power of G-od. Oh the 
deep things of God! Oh the unsearchable riches of 
Christ, which he that searcheth all things reveals unto 
the saints ! Oh the hidden treasures they now discover 
in this deep mine ! To you that believe, he is precious, 
a praise, an honor ; all fair, all glorious ; and you have 
seen his glory, as the glory of the only begotten Son 
of God, full of grace and truth. 

Again, there are marvellous evils, as well as good 
things, which by this light are brought to light. Sin, 
with all the hidden things of darkness that lie below 
in those chambers of death the secrets of the evil 
heart of man. Sin appears a wonder to the savingly 
enlightened soul: exceeding sinful, a world of wicked- 
ness. There is death, and hell, and the devil in every 
sin; unkindness, unthankfulness, folly, enmity, re- 
bellion, spite, and the blackness of % darkness. What 
once appeared as a pleasure, a delight, a beauty or 
at least, if an evil, yet but a trifle, a matter of nothing 
is become a plague, a terror, a burden, a bondage, 


"bitterness, shame, sorrow; and such a high provoca- 
tion, that whereas once he swelled and murnrared, 
and cried out of rigor, severity, cruelty in the least 
punishment of it ; now he wonders at the clemency, 
and patience, and forbearance of God, that such an 
affront and provocation had not long since turned the 
whole earth into a hell. 

Christian, thou complainest thou canst not see, 
thou canst not feel, thou canst not mourn, thou canst 
not break under all the guilt that lies upon thee; 
thy heart is har,d,- thine eyes are dry ; not a tear, not 
a groan, scarce a sigh will all this evil fetch out from 
thee. " Oh this blind and sottish mind! Oh this dead 
and senseless heart ! what shall I do ? what would I 
not do to. get me a melting, mourning, broken spirit? 
but I cannot, I cannot; I cannot see, I cannot bleed, 
nor break." beg the light of this Holy Spirit; and 
if the sight he will present thee with, of this wonder- 
ful evil, do not rend thy heart, and turn thee, and 
open all thy sluices, and let out thy soul in sighs and 
groans, in shame and sorrow, thou mayest then well 
be a wonder to thyself. But be not discouraged, be 
not dismayed ; do not say, This rock will never break, 
this iron will never melt ; I may go sighing for sighs, 
mourning after tears, groaning after groans, but all in 
vain, it will never be; I am past feeling; sorrow flies 
from me, repentance is hid from mine eyes. Do not 
thus discourage thyself; wait for this Spirit, open to 
it and thou shalt see flowing in such streams of self- 
shaming, self-confounding light, as shall flow forth in 
self-abasing, self-abhorring streams of tears. 


3. These marvellous things are revealed to them 
with marvellous clearness; that is, in comparison 
with what they are to the purblind world, and in com- 
parison with what they themselves once saw. They 
come to see the glory, and the "beauty, and the reality 
of the wonderful things of Gfod. "We have seen his 
glory," saith the apostle, John 1 : 14. " The kind- 
ness of G-od our Saviour appeared;" "hut we all, with 
open face, hehold as in a glass the glory of the Lord." 
2 Cor. 3 : 18. Out of Zion hath he appeared in per- 
fect "beauty. 

It is prophesied of the unbelieving world, that 
when they should see Christ, they should see no 
"beauty in him. Isa. 53 : 2. Strange ! though he is 
all beauty, yet they should see him, and yet see no 
beauty; that is, they shall see him, and yet not see 
him. "What is thy beloved more than any other be- 
loved ? What is Christ more than an ordinary man ? 
What is the gospel more than an ordinary story? 
What is the Spirit? What is truth? What is there 
in tins faith and love, in this holiness and righteous- 
ness, in this peace of conscience, and joy of the Holy 
Ghost? What substance is there in them? Where is 
the glory, and wherein is the excellency of them? 
Which way came the Spirit of the Lord from me to 
tliee ?" Thou shalt know in that day, when thou 
shalt call to the mountains to fall on thee, and the 
rocks to hide thee from the face of G-od and the Lamb. 
We know whom we have believed. We know that 
we know him. We speak that which we know, and 
testify what we have seen. We have an unction from 



the Holy One, we know all things. Ood hath revealed 
them to us by his Spirit; for the Spirit searcheth all 
things, even the deep things of Grod. Wow wo have 
received not the spirit of this world, hut the Spirit 
which is of Grod, that we might know the things that 
are freely given to us of God. "We have a clear and 
certain sight. We do not see men as trees walking, 
with our eyes half open : we see men as men, Christ 
as Christ, truth as truth, in its full lustre and evi- 
dence. This we have seen and do testify, neither 
deceiving nor being deceived. We thank thee, 
Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that thou hast hid 
these things from the wise and prudent, and hast 
revealed them unto babes. 

And as they see truth and holiness and goodness 
in their wonderful glory and beauty, so also folly and 
falsehood and sin in their wonderful ugliness and de- 
formity. Sin appears to them to be sin, folly to be 
folly, falsehood to be falsehood ; they see men as men, 
Christ as Christ, truth as truth, holiness as holiness ; 
and they see beasts as beasts, fools as fools, sin as sin, 
devils as devils, hell as hell. They see all things as 
they are, temptations as they are, (delusions as they 
are ; they see what is under them, the hook under the 
bait, the sting in the locust's tail, the war in the 
devil's heart carried on under his fawning face ; they 
are not ignorant of his devices. 
' Sinners, cease your wondering at the saints, let 
them be no longer for signs and for wonders in Israel ; 
cease your wandering at the saints, and come and 
wonder with them. Wonder not that they speak not 



as you, live not as you, run not with you after the 
same follies and vanities. Oh, if you once come to 
see what they see, you will "be a wonder to yourselves. 
Mock not at their blessedness : blessed are their eyes, 
for they see. The blind envy, but do not disdain the 
seeing. Say not, These men are in a dream, or drunk, 
or mad; take heed, blaspheme not the Holy Spirit, 
call not his light darkness, put not your darkness for 
light. Would you know, when these men testify 
what they have seen and heard, whether they are sober 
or beside themselves ? Come and see : I say not, 
stand and see ; you cannot see at the distance you 
stand : come near, come in, and you shall see see 
your blindness first, if ever you will see the light. 
Oh, bewail your darkness and seek light; seek, and 
you shall see it. " Son of David, have mercy on me." 
Why, what wilt thou, man? "Lord, that I may 
receive my sight." Shall that be thy cry ? pity thy 
blind soul. pray for eyes. They that see, pity the 
blind. be eyes to thy blind, be a light to thy dark 
soul ; let them that dwell in darkness see thy great 
light. Sinners, those whom you persecute do thus 
pity, do thus pray for you: "Lord, that their eyes 
might be opened." Will you say, Amen, to their 
prayers ; or will you say, Lord, regard not their word, 
we desire not the knowledge of thy ways ? 

Christians, be marvels. You that have seen mar- 
vellous things, be marvellous persons. Let your light 
shine, let the light which hath shined into your hearts 
shine forth in all your paths: let the 'Spirit of light 
within you', be a Spirit of glory resting upon you. 


Once you were darkness, but now are ye light in the 
Lord; walk as children of the light. Be ye holy, 
harmless, the children of Grod, without rebuke, in the 
midst of a crooked generation, among whom ye shine 
as lights in the world. 

Beclouded Christian, iliou goest on bemoaning and 
bewailing thyself, complaining that thou art still blind ; 
that the light hath shined into thy. darkness, but thy 
darkness cbmprehendetli it not ; thine eye is yet but 
tender, at least, and thou canst see but little but lit- 
tle of Christ, the sun is but as a spark to thee but 
little of sin, that mountain looks yet but as a molehill ; 
it is "neither clear nor dark," neither night nor perfect 
day. Thou didst hope that long ere this thy scales 
would have fallen off, that the veil would have been 
removed, but they abide upon thee ; thou waitest for 
light, but behold obscurityfor brightness, but thou 
walkest in darkness ; thou goest on, adding darkness 
to darkness, the darkness of sorrow to the dimness of 
sight. Thou fearest that the gospel is hid from thee, 
that it is still night, because, it is not yet noon with 
thee. But hearken : As little as thou seest of Christ, 
dost thou see so much that thou prizest and lovest and 
cleavest to him above all? As little as thou seest of 
sin, dost thou see so much that thou loathest and 
|| shunnest it above all things ? Dost thou walk in that 
Jj little light thou hast ; dost thou love, long, wait, cry 
for the light? "Send forth thy light and thy truth, 
lift up the light of thy countenance ; Sun of righteous- 
ness, shine upon me ;' why are the wheels of thy char- 
iot so long in coming ? when, Lord ? Make haste, my 

Heaven Opened. 3 


beloved ; might I once see thy face, as the sun, 
looking over the mountains." Is this thy voice ; are 
these the breathings of thy soul ? Be of good com- 
fort, these are the glimmerings and groanings of that 
Holy Spirit within thee, who hath already delivered 
thee from darkness, and will "bring thee forth into his 
marvellous light ; tliou shalt know, if thou follow on 
to know the Lord. "Arise, shine ; thy light is come, 
the glory of the Lord is risen upon thee." Though 
yet, as to thy sense, it be neither clear nor dark, nei- 
ther night nor perfect day, " at evening time it shall 
be light." 

He is given as a holy Spirit, and as a sanctifying 
Spirit; therefore sanctification is called the "sanetifi- 
cation of the Spirit." 2 Thess. 2 : 13. He comes to 
change us into his own nature, to make us partakers 
of his holiness ; he is a refiner's fire, and fuller's soap, 
Mai. 3 : 2, to purge and work and wash off the filth 
and corruption of our nature. It is said, he shall bo 
to the church "a Spirit of judgment and a Spirit of 
"burning," to wash away the filth of the daughters of 
Zion, and to purge the blood of Jerusalem from the 
midst thereof. Isa. 4:4. "A Spirit of judgment," 
that is, in the rulers of Israel stirring them up to do 
justice and execute judgment, that so the guilt of 
blood may be taken away ; and " a Spirit of burning," 
that is, in the hearts .of 'the people of Israel, to con- 
sume and destroy the inward lusts of their hearts, 
that no more such wickedness be committed among 


"What he is to the church, .this he is - to every saint, 
a Spirit of judgment, to give sentence against their 
lusts, to condemn them to the fire: these must be 
cast out. ' ' To the fire with them ; . away with them ; 
get ye hence, ye sons of the "bond- woman ; ye may not 
be heirs with the sons of the free woman." The Spir- 
it of the Lord first discovers and convinces of sin, 
judges between light and darkness, grace and sin, and 
then gives sentence: "Away with these lusts, they 
may not be suffered to live." It is a Spirit of burn- 
ing, to execute the sentence, to consume them in the 
fire. The Spirit of sanctification is a Spirit of morti- 
fication. "If ye through the Spirit do mortify the 
deeds of the body, ye shall live." Horn. 8 : 13. It is 
the Spirit that kills sin, the flesh profiteth nothing. 

The Spirit implants the soul into Christ, gives it 

an interest in his death, brings it under the influence 


of his death. It is the death of Christ that is the 
death of sin ; these thieves are crucified with him : 
" Our old man is crucified with Christ, that the body 
of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should 
no longer serve sin." Rom. 6 : 6. Hell knew not 
what they did when they crucified Christ | death and 
all its armies were put to death with him. 

The Spirit raises up another party in the soul, a 
party against a party, an army against an army; 
brings grace in to take up arms against sin. Grace 
doth not only fight against sin, but is in the very na- 
ture of it the death of sin. Humility is pride dead ; 
meekness is sinful passion and frowardness dead; 
patience is impatience slain. 


Tlie Spirit excites and stirs up the soul against 
sin ; sets it a praying against it : the Spirit of grace is 
a Spirit of supplication, it fetches down hailstones and 
thunderbolts from heaven to destroy these Amorites, 
sets a watch against sin, presses the soul to deal 
wisely with it, to keep it low by cutting off all pro- 
vision from the flesh, restraining and keeping it short 
of all those fleshly objects which would keep it in 
heart, and so it is starved to death. It is true, our 
own greatest wisdom, watchfulness, abstinence, self- 
denial, and all external means alone, will fall short of 
killing one lust ; it is the Spirit who killeth, without 
him the flesh profiteth nothing. All external attempts 
for the mortification of the flesh, are but a fleshly mor- 
tification. But if ye, through the Spirit, do mortify 
the flesh, praying in the Spirit, watching in the Spirit, 
curbing and keeping under this body, seeking always 
the assistance of the Spirit, then it shall die. 

Christian, thou livest in a weary land, and thou 
hast but a weary life of it ; briers and thorns are with 
thee, the Canaanite is yet in the land, thou sojournest 
in Meshech, and hast thy habitation in the tents of 
Kedar ; and thou hast a Meshech and Kedar within 
thee thou hast armies within thee of fleshly lusts 
which fight against thy soul. Thou goest mourning 
daily, because of the oppressor those spiritual wick- 
ednesses which lie in thy heart, and war in thy mem- 
bers. Thou often groanest and criest out to thy God, 
" Liberty, liberty ; redemption, redemption. Oh, this 
proud heart ! Oh, this vain heart-! Oh, this earth- 
liness! Oh, this fleshliness, this slothfulness, this 


enmity and rebellion against the law of my mind, and 
my God! When I would do good, evil is present 
with me. I cannot, I cannot do the things that I 
would. I can with no peace serve or enjoy my (rod 
and my soul : my duties are either prevented or pol- 
luted, my comforts are either wasted or made quite to 
vanish and disappear. When I would serve my God, 
I must away -to serving my appetites, or my pride, or 
my friends; when my soul is a little got upon the 
wing, and soaring in the upper region, it is presently 
checked, pulled down again to the earth. Oh, my 
pinioned, imprisoned ' soul ! Woe is me, wretched 
man that I am ! who shall deliver me from the body 
of this death ?" Yet comfort thy heart ; the enemy 
flies upon thee as a flood, "but the Spirit of the Lord 
shall lift up a standard against him. Thou com- 
plainest thy gold is become dross; yet he will turn his 
hand upon thee, and purely purge away -thy dross, 
and take away all thy tin. Though these briers and 
thorns be set in battle against thee, yea, and against 
him also, yet he will go through them, he will burn 
them together. Isa. 27 : 4. 

Thou complainest that thy garments are defiled, 
thy glory is stained, thy beauty is marred, the image 
of thy God is so defaced that there is but here and 
there a spot of it left upon thee. While thy Lord 
says, " Thou art all fair, my love," thou criest 
out, "I am all foul, my Lord:" thou wouldst be 
holiness to thy Lord, but thou art an offence to him ; 
holiness is still thy love and thy desire and thy long- 
ing, but it flies from thee ; it is rather thy wish than 


thy hope ; thou canst weep over, but thou canst not 
weep out thy "deformity ; thine iniquity is still marked 
before the Lord. If there be a little grace in thee, 
yet there is such a weakness in its sinews, such a 
paleness in its face, that it is not like to live ; or if it 
live, how little hope that ever it should thrive or 

Thus thou complainest, thus thou goest- mourn- 
-ing and sighing- and sinking and fainting in thy 
mind, and now and then venturest out a desponding 
prayer: "Lord, pity; Lord, look upon my sorrow 
and my sin; Lord, wash me; Lord, help me." "Why, 
the Lord Grod hath sent thee his help out of his sanc- 
tuary, and his strength out of Zion. The eternal 
Spirit is come down on purpose to give battle to the 
flesh, to subdue thine iniquities, and bring ah 1 those 
that rise up within thee under thy feet. Thou mis- 
takest thyself and thine enemies, if thou thinkest 
they will be conquered by one blow of thine arm ; 
this kind goeth not out so; "not by might nor by 
power," much less by weakness and by flesh, by any 
weak attempts of thine own, "but by my Spirit, 
saith the Lord." It is work for a Grod, to relieve 
and cleanse such a heart, to turn such a hell into 
a heaven. What thou canst not do, being weak 
through the flesh, behold, he comes down to do for 
thee ; thou hast proved thine own weakness, now try 
everlasting strength. He stands at the door and 
knocks, hear his voice at the door : " "Wilt thou be 
made clean ? "Wilt thou be made whole ? Wilt thou 
be delivered ?" Open to him, and with him deliver- 


anco comes in. He stands at the pool, stirring the 
waters for thee; put in thy cripple-soul, and "be 
healed of all thy. diseases ; say to him, "Lord, if 
thou wilt thou canst make me clean," and thou shalt 
soon have this answer, "I will; he thou clean." 

III. As a Spirit of TRUTH AND DIRECTION. John 
16 : 13. He shall guide them by his counsel, he shall 
lead them in the way that they should go. They 
shall hear a word behind them, saying, This is the 
way, walk ye in it, when ye turn to the right hand, 
and when ye turn to the left. Isa. 30 : 21. He shall 
lead them into all truth, to prevent mistakes; and 
into all righteousness, to prevent miscarriages. Nay, 
more, he shall not be only their star, but their strength 
too ; he shall guide them on, and help them on ; they 
shall be led by the Spirit, bound in the Spirit, pressed 
in the Spirit ; they shall be excited, assisted, carried on 
in the power of the Spirit, in the way that they should 
go ; he will cause them to walk in the statutes of the 
Lord. Whatsoever thy waywardness and thy wan- 
derings have been, whatever thy feebleness and fickle- 
ness be, whatever false lights and false ways are be- 
fore thee, whatever temptations thou meetest with to 
turn thee aside out of the right way, whatever doubts 
hence arise in thy heart, " I shall one day or other 
"perish from the way, and be a lost sheep at last;" yet 
his guidance shall be prosperous, and the event shall 
be sure ; he shall so guide thee by his counsel, that 
he shall bring thee to glory. He shall gather his 
lambs with his arm, and carry them in his bosom, 
and gently lead those that are with young. 


I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you ; 
tut if I depart, I will send him unto you." John. 
16 : 7. He shall come unto them, and abide with 
them, to supply the absence of their Redeemer, to 
support them under their affliction, to witness their 
adoption, to seal them up unto the day of redemp- 
tion, and to be the earnest of their inheritance. Eph. 

"He shall receive of mine, and shall show it unto 
you." John 16 : 14. "He shall receive of mine," that 
is, not only of the truths, those treasures of wisdom 
that are in me, though that be specially intended, but 
of my love, my righteousness, my holiness, and all 
those treasures of grace and mercy that are laid up in 
me : -whatever there is in me that may stand you in 
any stead, yield you any relief or support, the Com- 
forter whom I will send you shall bring it down to 
you; he shall take my blood and the pardons it 
hath purchased for you, my compassions that are 
working in me towards you, my prayers and inter- 
cessions I am offering up for you ; he shall take of all 
those treasures of grace and everlasting consolations 
which are laid up for you with me ; he shall take of 
mine, and show it unto you. As much as you have 
in the world to afflict and amaze you, as little as you 
have of your own to comfort you, either in your hearts 
or in your houses, or among your friends, he shall 
show what I have for you to refresh you. 

Christians, a sight of Christ in our sorrows, in 
our fears, in our thickest darkness, what daylight 


would it "bring in! "When thou lookest into thy heart, 
and art astonished and confounded at what thou find- 
est there at the blindness and the hardness, the pov- 
erty and the emptiness, the guilt and the guile, the 
pride and the peevishness, the evil thoughts, the vile 
affections, the filthy lusts, that are swarming- and 
working in thee; when thou lookest into the world, 
and tremblest at what thou beholdest there the 
malice, the craft, the power, that is engaged against 
thee ; the furious spirits, .the fiery tongues, the fierce 
looks,' the violent hands, that are flying upon thee, 
and the little relief the earth will afford thee ; when 
thy heart faints and dies within thee at the sense of 
this thy woful and forlorn state, a sight of what thou 
hast in thy Lord is presented to thee by his ' Spirit. 
Look thou here, soul, what thy Jesus has sent thee 
down a glance from his eye, a drop from his heart, 
food from his table ; and all to tell thee, Yet do I not 
forget thee ; behold the care I take of thee, the treas- 
ures I have for thee, to encourage thy love and re- 
ward thy faithfulness. Oh, how will this make all 
thy darkness depart, and turn the shadow of death 
into the morning ! 

Thus is the Holy Spirit given to the saints, to be 
the light of their eyes, the death of their sins, the 
guide of their ways, the stay of their hearts ; to up- 
hold their grace, and to maintain their peace ; to 'sub- 
due their enemies and their fears; to secure them 
from temptations, or succor them when tempted ; to 
wipe oft' their reproach, or make it their crown; to 
heal their diseases, or make them their cure ; to help 



tlieir infirmities, to work their works, to make their 
yoke easy and their "burdens light ; to turn their sighs 
into songs, to form their groans into prayers, send 
them up to their Lord, and bring down returns ; to 
comfort their hearts, to establish, strengthen, settle 
them, that they be neither offended at the rod nor 
moved from the hope of the gospel. 




GTOD hath put the earth into the covenant. Though 
the saints have not their portion in this life, yet this 
world also is theirs: "The meek shall inherit the 
earth." Matt. 5 : 5. "Things present, and things to 
come, all are yours." 1 Cor, 3 : 22. 1. The good 
things present. 2. The evil things present. 

I. The GOOD THINGS present. "Houses, and "breth- 
ren, and sisters, and mothers, and children, and lands, 
now in this time." Mark 10 : SO. " Length of days 
are in her right hand, and in her left hand riches and 
honor." Prov. 3 : 16. "Houses and lands," you say, 
"and riches and honors! where are they? Who are 
the poor of this world, the houseless, harboiiess, and 
friendless? Who have woe, and want, and shame, 
and sorrow ? Who are strangers and pilgrims, dwell- 
ing in tents, driven into corners, into dens, and- caves, 
hunted up and down upon the mountains of the earth? 
To whom is hunger and thirst, cold and nakedness, 
"but to the meek of the earth? Is this to inherit the 
earth? All theirs, when nothing is theirs?" Yet they 
do inherit the earth. For, 

1. They shall ever have as much as will suffice 
them, and that is as much as all. They shall not 
want any thing "but what they may well want: 
"Your Father knoweth that you have need of these 


things ;" and he knows how much you need. More 
thanks needful, is more than enough; and more than 
enough is a prejudice. Many men have too much; 
too much money, too much esteem, too many friends; 
more than they can bear ; so much as to sink- them, 
and drown them in perdition. 

Christians shall have enough; they shall never "be 
in such a needy state but whatever is necessary for 
them in all the earth they shall have. " The earth is 
the Lord's, and the fulness thereof;" and he has said, 
that those that seek him shall not want any thing 
ihat is good. Psalm 34 : 10. If the whole world 
can supply them out of all its store, they shall be 

2. What they have, they have a better and fur- 
ther title to, than any others in the world. "What 
they have descends upon them not barely .by provi- 
dence, but by promise. Heb. 1 : 2; Christ is heir of 
all things, and they are fellow-heirs with Christ. A 
little coming from the promise has more in it than the 
greatest abundance that is only handed down by com- 
mon providence. That which comes in from the 
promise, comes in with a blessing : if thou hast but a 
handful, thou hast a blessing in thy hand; if thou 
hast but a corner, thou hast a blessing in thy corner. 
A little from love is a great blessing. Thou hast God 
in every morsel thou eatest, and in every drop thou 
drinkest ; a drop from heaven will turn thy bra n into 
the finest flour, and thy water into wine. 

what serene and quiet lives, how void of care, 
distracting care, might the saints live in the world ! 


What are the "burdens that gall our "backs, what tho 
briers that tear our flesh, what the thorns that pierce 
our hearts ordinarily, "but the cares of 'this life? What 
shall I eat?, what shall I drink? wherewith shall 
I be clothed? where shall I dwell? how little have 
I for to-day, what for to-morrow, what for hereafter? 
how shall I secure what I have ? when this is gone, 
whence shall I he supplied ? Thus do we go on 
piercing ourselves through with many sorrows. Our 
cares for supply eat up what we have ; our thoughts 
cut deeper than pur wants ; we cannot at so cheap a 
rate fear, as we often actually hear, the want of all 
things. . ' 

And why take ye thought? "The earth is the 
Lord's, and the fulness thereof;" and he hath said, 
"All this is yours; you shall want nothing." You 
have not only providence to live upon ; you have also 
the promise before you, and this hath all things in it ; 
all is yours. "What have I for to-morrow? what for 
hereafter?" Why, what saith the promise ? "Thou 
shalt want nothing, neither thou nor thine. Never 
saw I the righteous forsaken, nor their seed hegging 
their bread." 

Hast thou two worlds made sure to thee, and canst 
thou want ? Thou mayest as well make a pitiful cry 
at a full table, where shall I have my next morsel ? 
as under such a full promise, where shall I have my 
next meal ? how much beneath the spirit of Chris- 
tianity are the carldng, anxious lives of too many 
Christians. You do not believe, you do not believe ; 
you. talk of your covenant-right, of your part in the 


promise, of living by faith; but where is any such 
thing? Can you trust God for your souls, and can 
you not trust him for your bodies, for your children ? 
Believe, and you will make as much, and be satisfied 
as well, with a penny in the promise, with a meal in 
the promise, with a house in the promise, as with a 
penny in your purse, or a meal in your cupboard. 

"What dost thou get by all thy anxiety? ""Which 
of you by taking thought can add one cubit to his 
stature " one farthing to his store ? Tears and trou- 
ble are all it will add to thee. Be quiet, and nothing 
will ail thee ; let not any straits sting thee before they 
come; want not before thou wantest; let not the 
winter's frost nip thee while it is yet summer. 

Know when thou art well, and be content. All 
is thine ; if thou inheritest thy G-od, thou inheritest 
the earth ; nothing of all its store shall be kept back 
from thee that is necessary for thee ; only thou must 
not look to be thine own carver, thy G-od will carve 
out what thou needest. Let enough suffice thee, and 
thou shalt never have too little. Thou shalt never 
have so little, but thou mayest say, This little is 

"What if that which thou wantest in water, be 
made up in wine; if thou hast but little in bran, 
but the more in flour ? A short meal with a smile 
from heaven thou mayest count no fast, but a feast ; 
a little oil in the cruse, how far will it go with a smile, 
the blessing of the covenant ! If the upper spring run 
freely, thou mayest abate a nether spring. 

Let my Beloved comfort me with his apples, 


and stay me with his flagons ; and let the rest 'be as 
little and as coarse as it will. Let the promise he 
my portion, let the pipes he kept open to my soul, and 
then the least pittance for this hody shall suffice me. 
0, my Lord, let me feed with thee, and I will not 
complain whatever my fare he. Let my portion he 
from thy table, and then he it much or little let me 
hear thy voice, "I am thine, and with me all things," 
and I am content to he at thy allowance. Let thy 
deed of gift stand sure to me, and put in my children's 
names there, and I ask no more for myself or them. 
Hold thy peace, keep silence, my anxious soul; 
know when thou art well ; he in nothing careful, the 
Lord is at hand. 

II. The EVIL THINGS of this earth are theirs. The 
cross is in the covenant. "If his children forsake my 
law, and walk not in my judgments ; if they hreak 
my statutes, and keep not my commandments ; then 
will I visit their transgression with the rod, and their 
iniquity with stripes." Psa. 89 : 30-32. 

The covenant hath its cross. The doctrine of the 
gospel is the doctrine of the cross, the preaching of the 
gospel is the preaching of the cross. 1 Cor. 1. The 
mysteries of a crucified Jesus and of his crucified 
saints fill up the whole New Testament. The cross 
is not only imposed upon the saints as their hurden, 
hut hequeathed unto them as a legacy. It is given 
'unto them as an honor and a privilege. "Unto you 
it is given in the hehalf of Christ, not only to helievo- 
on him, hut also to suffer for his sake." Phil. 1 : 29 
It is joined with the most glorious gift, the gift of 


faith. Yea, and it is a greater gift than this : to suf- 
fer in faith is more than barely to believe. 

But by virtue of the covenant, the cross is a bless- 
ing. "Blessed are they which are persecuted for 
righteousness' sake ; blessed are ye when men shall 
revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all man- 
ner of evil against you falsely, for my sake." Matt. 
5 : 10, 11. "Where then is the blessedness ; or wherein 
stands it ? It stands in these things : In the separa- 
tion of the cross from the curse ; in the sanctification 
of the cross to its ends ; in the proportioning of the 
cross to your needs and strength; and in the special 
comforts of the cross. 


1. The cross is separated from the curse. There is 
something in this. To be able to say under the sorest 
afflictions, This scourge is no scorpion; this is no 
curse, it is but a cross. Our Lord bore both the cross 
and the curse together, and that made his cup so bit- 
ter; but now he hath divided them: the curse he 
hath left upon sinners, and laid only the naked cross 
on his saints. The crosses of reprobate sinners are all 
curses. Every affliction is a curse ; there is wrath in 
all their sufferings ; there is vengeance in every dart ; 
every rod is a serpent to them. Thou who art of the 
number of Christ's implacable enemies, when he comes 
to fall upon thee and to grind thee under his hand, 
thou wouldest have a word of comfort to be spoken to 
thee in thy sorrow : no, no, there is no comfort can be 
spoken ; thou mayest say of every daii he smites thee 
with, This is sent of (rod to avenge himself upon me. 
The crosses of the impenitent are all curses ; but the 


saints' curses are all corao to be but crosses. Though 
men curse, the Lord will not curse ; whatever trou- 
bles come upon thee, though there be vinegar in them, 
yet there is no vengeance in them ; though there be 
anguish in them, yet there is no wrath in them; 
though they be ill-looked, yet there is no ill-will in 
them : they come upon no ill intent, nor shah 1 have 
any evil issue. The smitings of the wicked are to 
thee as the smitings of the righteous were to the 
psalmist, a precious balm. "Let the righteous smite 
me | it shall be a kindness it shall be an excellent 
oil, which shall not break my head." Psalm 141 : 5. 
And thou mayest say, Let the wicked smite me with 
the tongue, with the fist of wickedness, or what they 
will ; it shall not break my head, much less my heart ; 
it shall be a kindness to me, an excellent oil. 

2. The cross is sanctified to its ends. ,It has 
many holy and excellent ends, and it shall prosper, it 
shall accomplish its ends. The cross is laid on the 
saints sometimes to prove them, sometimes to reprove 
them, to humble them, to purge them ; and whatever 
it is sent to them for, it shall not return in vain. As 
the word, so the rod shall accomplish that which he 
pleases that sent it. By this the iniquity of Jacob 
shall be purged. 

3. The cross is proportioned to their needs and 
strength. " I will cotrect thee in measure, and will 
not leave thee altogether unpunished." Jer. 30:11. 
Just so much as will serve shall suffice ; the wise 
physician has respect both to the need and to the 
strength of the patient. " I will not contend for ever, 


neither will I be always wroth ; lest the spirit should 
fail before me, and the souls which I have made." 
Isa. 57 : 16. The apostle tells the saints that they 
have need of patience, Heb. 10 : 36 ; and their expe- 
rience tells them they have need of something to exer- 
cise their patience. And their needs are different: 
some are knotty pieces, and need more ; others are 
tender, and upon them less will serve. The stubborn 
child must have more stripes ; the shaking of the rod 
will do more on some spirits than the smart of it on 
others, but all need something. Let him only that 
is without sin say, I have no need of shame and sor- 
row. The Lord will neither over, nor under do; 
every one shall have his load, and no more no more 
than they can bear, and no less than their need re- 
quires. The Lord delights not in his children's tears, 
he doth not afflict willingly, nor grieve the children of 
men ; but yet he would rather have them cry than 

Wonder not, Christians, that your tender Lord 
puts you to pain, and that your pains are so sharp 
and so many; your heavenly Father knoweth that 
you have need of all these things. It is a mercy 
that he will chastise ; you may put your corrections 
among your mercies. His breakings of you are his 
blessings, his woundings are . your cures ; and by 
your own, as by your Lord's stripes, you are healed. 
And when you shall review and read over all his 
darker providences, and behold the wisdom and ten- 
derness which is mingled with his severities, evinced 
in his laying on' so much, and yet no more than 


was needful, you will then acknowledge with the 
psalmist, "Thou in very faithfulness hast afflicted 


0, my Lord, let me not want thy staff nor thy 
rod, neither a friend nor an enemy ; neither a calm 
nor a storm ; neither food nor medicine : if my dis- 
ease he too strong for my physio, let me have yet a 
stronger potion ; if my wanton heart will not yet be 
tamed, put on more fetters, a heavier load load upon 
load, weight upon weight. Let me never he sick of 
ray remedy till I he cured of my disease. Let me 
rather suffer by the hand of a devil, than perish by 
the hand of a lust. Spare not, Lord, cease not, Lord, 
to smite thy servant, till thou hast thereby smitten 
down all mine enemies. Peace, plenty, ease ! what, 
that I may have to spend upon my lusts ; to wax 
wanton against my God? Such peace I will not 
have. Pain, trouble, want, any thing rather than 
peace upon such terms. Correct me, Lord, yet in 
judgment, but not in thy fury, lest I be consumed 
and brought to nothing. 

4. The cross hath its special comforts, " Blessed 
be God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, 
the Father of mercies, and the God of all comfort ; 
who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may 
be able to comfort them which are in any trouble by 
the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of 
God. For as the sufferings of Christ abound in us, 
so our consolation also aboundeth by Christ. And 
whether we be afflicted, it is for your consolatign and 
salvation, which is effectual in the enduring of the 


same sufferings wliich we also suffer ; or whether we 
be comforted, it is for your consolation arid .salvation : 
and our hope of you is steadfast, knowing that as ye 
are partakers of the sufferings, so shall ye he also of 
the consolation." 2 Cor. 1 : 3-7. 

The comforts of the cross are often the sweetest 
and the fullest that the saints ever taste on this side 
the crown. The first draught is often bitter ; the 
green cross is heavy, and it is necessary it sho-uld be 
so. It must be a heavy yoke that will tame an 
unruly neck : if it gall not, it will not heal ; it is the 
smart of the rod that stills the child. Think noif your 
burdens will lie easy when first laid on ; and think it 
not much if they do not. The first conflict with temp- 
tations may put you to a harder brunt than you are 
aware. It must be so, that it may be for your good 
afterwards. " Tribulation worketh patience ;" but 
this it cannot do unless it pains you. It is observ- 
able that it is not said that the cross worketh patience, 
but the tribulation, the pinching of the cross, or the 
pain the cross puts us to ; this is patience, a quiet 
bearing that pain which the flesh when touched puts 
us to. "When we feel the thorns and the nails, when 
the iron enters into our souls, when it pricks and 
smarts, then it will work. The green cross is heavy, 
a prison or a wilderness will be appalling at the first ; 
but when your Lord comes in and visits you, then the 
sweet, the pleasure comes ; and the more frowns at 
the threshold, the more kisses you may expect after- 
wards, Christ does not always meet his saints in the 
porch : the devil's parlor, the inner prison is his ban- 


quoting house, the dungeon his pavilion ; there they 
drink and are satisfied. The stocks and the rack are 
the organs that make them the sweetest music. Many 
a saint has been sadly disappointed at the first, hop- 
ing to meet with Christ at the door; but behold, a 
dreadful sight behold, sin lieth at the door all 
his sins, all that ever he did against Christ, all his 
unthankfnlness, unfaithfulness, unkindness, rebellion 
against his Lord, stand forth and stare him in the 
face. . 

Christians, beware of sin now ; it will meet you 
in the day of adversity, the cross will tell you all that 
ever you did. "I remember my faults this day: now 
I remember all my pleasant things my Sabbaths, 
my ordinances, my liberty, the dear society I once 
enjoyed but trifled and wasted away. . Oh, my pride 
and my wantonness, my idleness, my earthliness, my 
hypocrisy, wherefore are you come thus to affright and 
torment me ? Lord, whither am I come ? how 
dreadful is this place ! Is this my prison-entertain- 
ment? Are these my prison-comforts? what a 
hard lodging am I like to have with such companions ! 
the wormwood and the gall ; a dark habitation, a 
bitter cup indeed, is now given unto me. Is this the 
comfort of the cross-? Are these the sweets so much 
talked of?" Yet be not dismayed, however roughly 
thou art handled at the door; it is better within; the 
devil is going out in this storm; thy sins meet thee 
now, but it is only to shake hands and part ; after this 
agony, expect the angels to come and minister to thee. 
Complain not if thou yet find no sweet, thou hast 


neither will I be always wroth ; lest the spirit should 
fail before me, and the souls which I have made." 
Isa. 57 : 16. The apostle tells the saints that they 
have need of patience, Heb. 10 : 36 ; and their expe- 
rience tells them they have need of something to exer- 
cise their patience. And their needs are different: 
some are knotty pieces, and need more; others are 
tender, and upon them less will serve. The stubborn 
child must have more stripes ; the shaking of the rod 
will do more on some spirits than the smart of it on 
others, but all need something. Let him only that 
is without sin say, I have no need of shame and sor- 
row. The Lord will neither over, nor under do; 
every one shall have his load, and no more no more 
than they can bear, and no less than their need re- 
quires. The Lord delights not in his children's tears, 
he doth not afflict willingly, nor grieve the children of 
men ; but yet he would rather have them cry than 

Y/onder not, Christians, that your tender Lord 
puts you to pain, and that your pains are so sharp 
and so many; your heavenly Father knoweth that 
you have need of all these things. It is a mercy 
that he will chastise ; you may put your corrections 
among your mercies. His breakings of you are his 
blessings, his woundings are . your cures ; and by 
your own, as by your Lord's stripes, you are healed. 
And when you shall review and read over all Ms 
darker providences, and behold the wisdom and ten- 
derness which is mingled with his severities, evinced 
in his laying on' so much, and yet no more than 


was needful, you will then acknowledge with the 
psalmist, "Thou in very faithfulness hast afflicted 


0, my Lord, let me not want thy staff nor thy 
rod, neither a friend nor an enemy ; neither a calm 
nor a storm ; neither food nor medicine : if my dis- 
ease be too strong for my physic, let me have yet a 
stronger potion ; if my wanton heart will not yet be 
tamed, put on more fetters, a heavier load load upon 
load, weight upon weight. Let me never be sick of 
my remedy till I be cured of my disease. Let me 
rather suffer by the hand of a devil, than perish by 
the hand of a lust. Spare not, Lord, cease not, Lord, 
to smite thy servant, till thou hast thereby smitten 
down all mine enemies. Peace, plenty, ease ! what, 
that I may have to spend upon my lusts ; to wax 
wanton against my God? Such peace I will not 
have. Pain, trouble, want, any thing rather than 
peace upon such terms. Correct me, Lord, yet in 
judgment, but not in thy fury, lest I be consumed 
and brought to nothing. 

4. The cross hath its special comforts. " Blessed 
be God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, 
the Father of mercies, and the God of all comfort ; 
who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may 
be able to comfort them which are in any trouble by 
the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of 
God. For as the sufferings of Christ abound in us, 
so our consolation also aboundeth by Christ. And 
whether we be afflicted, it is for your consolatiQn and 
salvation, which is effectual in the enduring of the 


same sufferings which we also suffer ; or whether we 
be comforted, it is for your consolation arid .salvation : 
and our hope of you is steadfast, knowing that as ye 
are partakers of the sufferings, so shall ye be also of 
the consolation." 2 Cor. 1 : 3-7. 

The comforts of the cross are often the sweetest 
and the fullest that the saints ever taste on this side 
the crown. The first draught is often bitter ; the 
green cross is heavy, and it is necessary it should be 
so. It must be a heavy yoke that will tame an 
unruly neck : if it gall not, it will not heal ; it is the 
smart of the rod that stills the child. Think nof your 
burdens will lie easy when first laid on ; and think it 
not much if they do not. The first conflict with temp- 
tations may put you to a harder brunt than you are 
aware. It must be so, that it may be for your good 
afterwards. " Tribulation worketh patience ;" but 
this it cannot do unless it pains you. It is observ- 
able that it is not said that the cross worketh patience, 
but the tribulation, the pinching of the cross, or the 
pain the cross puts us to ; this is patience, a quiet 
bearing that pain which the flesh when touched puts 
us to. When we feel the thorns and the nails, when 
the iron enters into our souls, when it pricks and 
smarts, then it will work. The green cross is heavy, 
a prison or a wilderness will be appalling at the first ; 
but when your Lord comes in and visits you, then the 
sweet, the pleasure comes ; and the more frowns at 
the threshold, the more kisses you may expect after- 
wards, Christ does not always meet his saints in the 
porch : the devil's parlor, the inner prison is his ban- 


quoting house, the dungeon his pavilion ; there they 
drink and are satisfied. The stocks and the rack are 
the organs that make them the sweetest music. Many 
a saint has been sadly disappointed at the first, hop- 
ing to meet with Christ at the door; but behold, a 
dreadful sight behold, sin lieth at the door all 
his sins, all that ever he did against Christ, all his 
unthankfulness, unfaithfulness, unldndness, rebellion 
against his Lord, stand forth and stare him in the 
face. . 

Christians, beware of sin now; it will meet you 
in the day of adversity, the cross will tell you all that 
ever you did. " I remember my faults this day : now 
I remember all my pleasant things my Sabbaths, 
my ordinances, my liberty, the clear society I once 
enjoyed but trifled and wasted away. . Oh, my pride 
and my wantonness, my idleness, my earthliness, my 
hypocrisy, wherefore are you come thus to affright and 
torment me ? Lord, whither am I come ? how 
dreadful is this place ! Is this my prison-entertain- 
ment? Are these my prison-comforts? what a 
hard lodging am I like to have with such companions ! 
the wormwood and the gall ; a dark habitation, a 
bitter cup indeed, is now given unto me. Is this the 
comfort of the cross-? Are these the sweets so ranch 
talked of?" Yet be not dismayed, however roughly 
thou art handled at the door ; it is better within ; the 
devil is going out in this storm; thy sins meet thee 
now, but it is only to shake hands and part ; after this 
agony, expect the angels to come and minister to thee. 
Complain not if thou yet find no sweet, thou hast 


not drank deep enough; in the next room tliou may- 
est meet thy Lord, and then tell me if it come short 
of all that hath been told thee. 

But shall I give yon a more particular view of 
some of the special comforts of the cross, or our suf- 
ferings for Christ ? I shall only first premise a word 
to let you understand what I mean hy the sufferings oi 
Christ. We then suffer for Christ, when we suffer for 
Christ's cause ; when we suffer because we will be 
Christians, will he holy and righteous ; when we suffer 
because we will not sin; and when we suffer upon 
Christ's call, when he cuts out a cross for us and lays 
it upon us. Then Christ calls us to suffering when he 
puts us to this choice, either to suffer or to sin ; when 
either our backs or our consciences must suffer ; when 
we must suffer, or he must suffer by us. " If any man 
will be my disciple, let him take up his cross." Christ 
is not, and Christians must not be prodigal of their 
blood : their blood is his ; their estates, their names,, 
their liberties are all his, and to him they must be 
accountable how they part with them. It is not ev- 
ery cross that thou canst call "thy" cross ; we must 
not leave our way to seek a cross : when Christ has 
laid a cross athwart a Christian's way that he should 
go, and he must either make a stand or turn aside, 
or submit his neck to it, then he says, There is thy 
cross ; take it up, and get thee gone. "Whatever cross 
bs before thee, if thou hast a way open to avoid it. 
without sin, that is none of thy cross ; thou mayest 
not take it up, or if thou dost, thou wilt have no 
thanks for thy pains. 


Christians should be wary here. Though it "be an 
evidence of a gracious spirit to be always of a ready 
and forward mind to suffer for Christ ; and when he 
demands, Who will go with me who will bear my 
cross ? cheerfully to answer, I will go, Lord, let me 
bear it ; yet should we take heed that, as we hang 
not back when he says Go, so we run not before 
he send us. Though it be a high honor to suffer for 
the gospel, yet no man taketh this honor upon him- 
self, but he that is called of Grod. I would not go to 
a prison without a mittimus from heaven, lest, if my 
suffering be of myself, I be there left to shift for my- 
self. If Christ should meet me in prison or in banish- 
ment, and demand of me, "What doest thou here, 

Elijah? friend, how earnest thou in hither?" what 

should I say if I could not say this, Thou, Lord, hast 
brought me hither ; my conscience, my duty hath 
brought me here ? 

But understand me here with this caution : that 
when the cause for the main is Christ's, though the 
call seems doubtful, yet when the sufferer hath care- 
fully inquired the mind of God, truly follows the dic- 
tates of an enlightened conscience, and sincerely de- 
signs the honor of Christ and his gospel, although he 
should err in some circumstances of his case, and for 

J> fear of iniquity should choose affliction when possibly 

he might have avoided both, God will surely own his 
sufferings, and accept his readiness of mind. 

Yet still take heed of careless or wilful errors; 
take heed of preparing nails for thine own cross, thorns, 
scourges, spears for thine own head or heart. Take 


heed both how thou shunnest, and how thou espottsest 
a suffering state. Gfo not into it upon heedless mis- 
takes ; go not into it for good company, much less 
upon any carnal .designs ; let not thy pride or osten- 
tation, or the "bias of any fleshly considerations, lead 
thee into the house of correction, lest thou find them 
the rods to lash thee when thou art there. 

Christians, consider if there be not sometimes some 
uncomfortable miscarriages in this matter ; and wheth- 
er it has not been the lot of some. of Christ's with how 
much justice or charity let the Lord be judge -to be 
censured and reproached as unfaithful or as fearful, 
on no other account but for walking by this rule : not 
to go to prison without a warrant, that is, not to cast 
themselves into a suffering state, while God hath left 
a way open to escape without sin. I confess, the 
more dangerous and the more ordinary error is on the 
other hand : we are more apt especially when afflic- 
tions are more sharp, and bite in earnest, and then 
will be the great trial rather sinfully to shift our- 
selves of them, than unwarrantably to run 'our selves 
upon them ; but yet let it be considered whether there 
be not an error on this hand also. 

It is true, where the cause is the same as to the 
main, different circumstances may make that to be 
one man's sin, which is another man's duty; yea, that 
may be a duty to the same man at one time, which, 
supposing him in different circumstances, might have 
been his sin at another. And it is not seldom, through 
the unavoidable difference of our apprehensions, and 
the difficulty of discerning our cases, that Christians 


equally careful to know and do the will of Grod, when 
the case and the circumstances also are mostly the 
same, do judge differently about their call to suffer- 
ing. Here let no man "be so tyrannical to others, as 
to expect that they should go cross to their own, to 
comply with their brethren's judgments and con- 
sciences. Let us not put one another on this unmer- 
ciful necessity, either to break our peace with Grod or 
our friends. Let it be sufficient to us faithfully to 
follow our own light, without judging or quarrelling 
with those who are otherwise minded. Beware of 
bitterness. Be not cruel to consciences; smite not 
with the tongue, nor let an evil thought arise in thy 
heart, upon any such account as this. Thine arrows 
will recoil and fly back in thine own face. Blemish 
not thine own sufferings by blasting thy brother's lib- 
erty. Let not the wariness of some be condemned 
for cowardice, nor the forwardness of others for pride 
or hypocrisy ; but let us be clothed with humility, let 
us put on a spirit of self-suspicion, and of charity to 
our brethren; and let this Christian frame be the 
more studiously maintained, the more our practices, 
differing according to the variety of -our apprehen- 
sions, seem to condemn each other and so provoke to 
uncomfortable schisms and contentions, and the more 
pernicious such schisms are likely to prove in the 

These things premised, I shah 1 now show you what 
the special comforts of the cross are. You may expect 
your suffering state to be sweetened with, 

1. A more plentiful diffusion of special grace. 

Heaven Opened. 4 


Grace is a comfort ; it is never "better with the saints 
than when that flourishes. The joy of the harvest is 
nothing to the joy of grace ; he is not a Christian that 
cannot say, " It is summer," when these flowers ap- 
pear in their beauty. Flourishing faith and love have 
their glorious joys. 1 Pet. 1 : 8. The springs of grace 
are a resurrection from the dead ; and there is no such 
spring as after a shower. Oh, how 'green do the herbs 
then look. The withering flowers do then lift up the 
head. Never so many stars appear, nor with such 
lustre, as in a frosty night. Grind the spices, and 
their fragrancy flows out. Saints are never more 
saints than in the house of bondage, or the land of 
their pilgrimage ; our winter weather makes us warm 
at heart. As our outward man perishes, our inward '', ; 
man is renewed day by day. 2 Cor. 4:16. Perse- '"''> 
cation is the time of life. "We are delivered to death'. ; ,- ; 
for Jesus' sake, that the life also of Jesus might be ' ,, v _ 
manifest in our mortal flesh. 2 Cor. 4:11. Decayed 
soul, comfort thy heart, the cross is coming; now thou ;,u, ;;.'.' 
shalt live, now thou shalt recover. This weakness will 
strengthen -the things that remain and are ready to 
die. Now, faith and love and patience and courage, 
that have so long hung the wing, lift up the head, 
the day of your redemption di'aweth nigh ; this night 
is your day of hope. 

2. The cross will also bring a more clear revela- 
tion of special love, Lovest thou me, Lord ? '' If so, 
it is enough. Let me hear thy voice, let me see thy 
face. Kiss me with the kisses of thy mouth. Thy 
loving-kindness is better than life ; send forth thy 


light and thy truth., let these tell me tliou lovest me. 
Thy poor spouse is sick for love ; when wilt thou 
say, " Thou knowest that I love thee ?" Why, come 
up with me on the cross; that withered tree bears 
more blossoms of love, than all the green trees of tho 
field. The whole gospel is hung upon the cross. 
"Where our Lord hung, there is sin nailed, the curse , 
vacated, death vanquished ; pardon, peace, joy, glory, 
showed forth in open sight. There is love with all its 
tokens ; go up and take. Fear not to be baptized with, 
thy Lord's baptism, nor to drink of his cup ; this cup 
also is the communion of the blood of Christ. Come 
with me into the wilderness, there will I speak com- 
fortably to thee. When thou most wantest it, where 
thou wilt most value it, there will I show thee my 

OuV Lord loves not to have love slighted : the full 
soul loathes the honeycomb ; thou hast yet too many 
lovers to bid thy Lord welcome : he keeps his best 
' wine till all thine own be soured ; then it will relish, 
and then thou shalt have it. His oil is for thy wounds. 
The child never knows so much of the parent's heart 
and compassion as when it is sick or in distress ; then 
every look is love, every word is pity and compassion. 
the compassion of Christ's Heart towards his afflicted 
children ! When thou knowest hatred, then look to 
know love ; when thou art persecuted, when thou art 
cast out and trodden under foot of men, then will he 
take thee in and cherish thee. 

3. Thou shalt have also a more full manifestation 
of glory. There is not a prison into which the saints 


Grace is a comfort ; it is never "better with, the saints 
than when that flourishes. The joy of the harvest is 
nothing to the joy of grace ; he is not a Christian that 
cannot say, " It is summer," when these flowers ap- 
pear in their "beauty.. Flourishing faith and love have 
their glorious joys. 1 Pet. 1 : 8. The springs of grace 
are a resurrection from the dead; and there is no such 
spring as after a shower. Oh, how green do the herbs 
then look. The withering flowers do then lift up the 
head. Never so many stars appear, nor with such 
lustre, as in a frosty night. Grind the spices, and 
their fragrancy flows out. Saints are never more 
saints than in tho house of bondage, or Hie land of 
their pilgrimage ; our winter weather makes us warm 
at heart. As our outward man perishes, our inward 
man is renewed day by day. 2 Cor. 4 : 16. Perse- 
cution is the time of life. "We are delivered to death 
for Jesus' sake, that the life also of Jesus might be 

' o 

manifest in our mortal flesh. 2 Cor. 4: 11. Decayed 
soul, comfort thy heart, the cross is coming; now thou 
shalt live, now thou slialt recover. This weakness will 
strengthen the things that remain ana are ready to 
die. Now, faith and love and patience and courage, 
that have so long hung the wing, lift up the head, 
the clay of your redemption clraweth nigh ; this night 
is your day of hope. 

2. The cross will also bring a more clear revela- 
tion of special love. Lovest thou me, Lord ? If so, 
it is enough. Let me hear thy voice, let me see thy 
face. Kiss me with the kisses of thy mouth. Thy 
loving-kindness is better than life ; send forth thy 


liglit and thy truth, let these tell me thou lovest me. 
Thy poor spouse is sick for love ; when wilt thou 
say, " Thou knowest that I love thee ?" Why, come 
up with me on the cross ; that withered tree hears 
more blossoms of love, than all the green trees of the 
field. The whole gospel is hung upon the cross. 
"Where our Lord hung, there is sin nailed, the curse 
vacated, death vanquished ; pardon, peace, joy, glory, 
showed forth in open sight. There is love with all its 
tokens ; go up and take. Fear not to be baptized with, 
thy Lord's baptism, nor to drink of his cup ; this cup 
also is the communion of the blood of Christ. Come 
with me into the wilderness, there will I speak com- 
fortably to thee. When thou most wantest it, where 
thou wilt most value it, there will I show thee my 

Our Lord loves not to have love slighted : the full 
soul loathes the honeycomb ; thou hast yet too many 
lovers to bid thy Lord welcome : he keeps his best 
wine till all thine own be soured ; then it will relish, 
and then thou shalt have it. His oil is for thy wounds. 
The child never knows so much of the parent's heart 
and compassion as when it is sick or in distress ; then 
every look is love, every word is pity and compassion. 
the compassion of Christ's heart towards his afflicted 
children ! When thou knowest hatred, then look to 
know love ; when thou art persecuted, when thou art 
cast out and trodden under foot of men, then will he 
take thee in and cherish thee. 

3. Thou shalt have also a more full manifestation 
of glory. There is not a prison into which the saints 


are cast, but hath a window in the palace. Calvary 
"becomes a Tabor, where they have a sight of their 
Lord in his glory. Golgotha becomes a Pisgah, where 
they may look over Jordan into the land of promise. 
Hast thou known little of heaven ? thou hast not yet 
been in the deep. 

Of Stephen the first gospel-martyr it is said, 
" He looked up steadfastly into heaven, and saw the 
glory of God, and Jesus standing on the right hand of 
G-od." Acts 7 : 55. " And all that sat in the coun- 
cil saw his face as it had been the face of an angel." 
Acts 6 : 15. Such an admirable splendor and serenity 
shone in his countenance, as spoke him rather an angel 
than a man. Oh, what a heaven was there within, 
that cast out such a divine lustre on his face! his joy 
was too big for his heart, his face must have its share ; 
yea, his very adversaries, at second-hand, behold the 
glory of God. 

He looked up and saw heaven opened. Looking 
down, he might see hell opened, all his tormentors 
about him, the jaws of death ready to devour and 
swallow him up ; but looking up, he saw heaven 
opened, and Jesus standing at the right hand of God. 
" Oh, there he is, for whose sake is all this. My Be- 
loved, my Beloved is yonder. Behold the region of 
light, whither this dark tempest is wafting me." His 
hell and his heaven meet, but the light swallows up 
the dark. Hell ceases to be hell, where heaven ap- 
pears to be heaven. This is the portion of suffering 
saints. When you read what is written of those 
armies of martyrs that have gone before of their 


unspeakable joys, their undaunted courage, their ad- 
mirable boldness ; of their cheering their friends, con- 
founding their foes, their rejoicing in their stripes, 
singing in their stocks, leaping in their chains, boast- 
ing of their bonds, kissing their stakes, embracing the 
flames, riding up in triumph in their chariots of lire, 
not repenting of their faith, nor accepting of deliver- 
ance what doth this speak, but that their eyes, as 
well as their anchor, are within the veil, whither 
Christ their forerunner is gone before them? Oh, 
who would not be with them ? "Who would fear suf- 
ferings ? 

Soul, what art thou afraid of? "Whither art thou 
running ; from what art thou hiding thyself ? "What is 
thine ease, or thy liberty, or thy quiet ? "Why so loath 
to loose from this shore ? Launch forth into the deep. 
Fear not transportation into thy house of bondage ; 
when thou art once there, it is but look up and thou 
art in Paradise. 

Such are the sufferings of Christ, this is the cross 
of the covenant. But it includes also, 

4. That which comprehends all the rest, a more 
manifest exhibition of Christ's special presence : " I 
am with thee to save thee." Jer. 30 : 11. " When 
thou passest through the waters, I will be with thee ; 
and through the rivers, they shall not overflow thee : 
when thou walkest through the fire, thou shalt not bo 
burnt, neither shall the flame kindle upon thee." Isa. 
43 : 2. Through fire and water thou must go " we 
went through fire and water into a wealthy place" 
but wherever thou goest, he will go with thee. When 


the bush was on fire, the Lord was in the bush; when 
the three children were in the furnace, the Son of G-od 
was there with them. " In ah 1 their afflictions he was 
afflicted, and the angel of his presence saved them : in 
his love and in his pity he redeemed them ; and he 
bare them, and carried them all the days of old." Isa. 
63 : 9. Though all men forsook me, the Lord stood 
with me and strengthened me. 2 Timothy, 4 : 16, 17. 
The saints shall never have this to charge upon the 
Lord, " I was in prison, and thou visitedst me not." 

He is ever with them, to bear their burdens and 
ease their shoulders ; to plead their cause and main- 
tain their innocence ; to wash their stripes, to wipe 
off their tears, to heal, their wounds, to bind up their 
broken bones, to revive their weary spirits, to per- 
fume their prisons, to lighten their dungeons, to lead 
them in their wanderings, to converse with them in 
their solitudes; to give down from above, in divine 
smiles and spiritual joys, assurances of dearest love, 
tenderest care, melting sympathy, gracious accept- 
ance ; to give down from above whatever is wanting 
beneath: in fine, to preserve them from falling by 
the presence of his grace, till he present them fault- 
less before the presence of his glory. Oh, it is good 
being with Christ anywhere. 

" Tell me, thou whom my soul loveth, where 
thou feedest and makest thy flock to rest at noon." 
"Where thou feedest?" yea, where thou art, whether 
feeding or fasting, whether rejoicing or mourning. 
"Where thou makest thy flock to rest at noon?" 
yea, and where thou sufferest thy flocks to bo scat- 


tqred in the night. "Where thy flocks are, thou art 
not far away; tell me where thou feedest, tell me 
where thou art. My Beloved that feedeth among the 
lilies, feedeth sometimes among the thorns. When 
his love is a lily among thorns, there he feedeth. He 
feedeth among thorns ; he feedeth with his sheep, he 
feedeth with his lambs wherever they feed; when 
darkness and desolation and devils and death feed 
upon them, even then he feedeth them, and takes his 
feeding with them. 

Oh, wherever my Lord is, there let my lot fall. 
Let me dwell among the thorns, if so my dwelling 
he with my Lord among the lilies. Let me wander 
among the mountains while he is with me telling 
all my wanderings. Let me be scourged, so he will 
wash my stripes ; let me weep, so he will wipe off my 
tears : I would not fear wounds while I have such oil 
to pour in. Come, all ye thieves and robbers, I fear 
you not, my dear Samaritan comes by ; come, ye bulls 
of Bashan, ye boars of the forest, let my Beloved kiss 
me with the kisses of his mouth, and I regard it not 
though you kick me with the heel. my Lord, bring 
me where thou feedest, let me live in thy face, let me 
feel thy smiles upon my heart, let me love thee, tell 
me thou lovest me, rememberest, pitiest, acceptest, 
takest care for me, and then choose my condition, my 
dwelling, and entertainment for me. 

Fainting Christian, lift up thine eyes, comfort thy 
heart ; here is that thou fearest and tormentest thyself 
with. Here is the inside of that formidable cross, the 
light side of those dark clouds, the sunny side of that 


shady tliorn hedge that so wounds and afflicts thy 
heart. Fear not, be strong and of a good courage. 
Thou still sayest, ""Woe is me, I can find no such 
thing. Ah, Lord (rod, doth he not speak parables ? 
that I were assured it might be thus with ihe. 1 " 
Why, art thou not in covenant ? Believe, and all is 
thine. I believe, and therefore have I spoken; be- 
lieve, and thou shalt see the salvation of Grod; as 
sure as the cross is thine, all the comforts of the cross 
are settled upon thse. Read over all the gracious 
words thou hast before thine eyes ; review all the 
instances of suffering saints that have gone before 
thee, to whom these good words have been made 
good, in conspicuous increases of divine grace, in the 
signal discoveries of divine love, in the clearest and 
fullest revelation of divine glory, in the intimate sense 
of the divine presence, quickening, enlarging, encour- 
aging, supporting their spirits in the darkest dens, in 
the sharpest conflict with reproaches, mockings, bonds, 
banishments, torments, and deaths; and know that 
all these things are written for thy learning, that thou 
through patience and comfort of the Scriptures may- 
est have hope. 

Eead over Isaiah fifty-first : " Hearken to me, ye 
that follow after righteousness, ye that seek the Lord ; 
look unto the rock whence ye are hewn, and to the 
hole of the pit whence ye are digged." " For the 
Lord shall comfort Zion ; he will comfort all her waste 
places ; he will make her wilderness like Eden, and 
her desert like the garden of the Lord ; joy and glad- 
ness shall be found therein, thanksgiving and the 


voice of melody." " Lift up your eyes to the heav- 
ens," etc. "Hearken unto me, ye that know right- 
eousness, the people in whose heart is my law ; fear 
ye not the reproach of men, neither be ye afraid of 
their revilings : for the moth shall eat them up like a 
garment, and the worm shall eat them like wool ; but 
my righteousness shall be for ever, and my salvation 
from generation to generation." " I, even I, am he 
that comforteth you : who art thou, that thou shouldest 
be afraid of a man that shall die, and of the son of man 
which shall be made as grass ; and forgettest the Lord 
thy Maker, that hath stretched forth the heavens, and 
laid the foundations of the earth; and hast feared con- 
tinually every day because of the fury of the oppressor, 
as if he were ready to destroy ? And where is the fury 
of the oppressor ?" " Where is the fury of the oppres- 
sor ?" sayest thou ; " where is it not, rather ? Is it not 
in the house, and in the field ? Is it not in the city 
and in the villages ? Is it not upon my cattle, upon 
my purse, upon my body, upon my children, upon my 
friends ? "Where is not the fury of the oppressor ?" 
But when thou rememberest the Lord thy Maker, 
the oath, the promise, and covenant of God, the pres- 
ence, protection, and comfort of thy God when thou 
rememberest this, then, u Where is the fury of the 
oppressor ?" 




I. THE ANGELS OF LIGHT are in the covenant. " Are 
they not all ministering spirits, sent forth to minister 
for them who shall he heirs of salvation ?" Hebrews 
1 : 14. While our Lord himself was sent down to 
minister, behold his servants are to be ministered 
unto; the angels are made their ministers : "He shall 
give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all 
thy ways." Psa. 91 : 11. They have received a charge, 
and they have great advantages for keeping the charge 
of the Lord. 

1. They are mighty. "Bless the Lord, ye his 
angels that excel in .strength." Psalm 103 : 20. An 
angel is more than an army; what slaughters have 
the angels made in the armies of the aliens ! A hun- 
dred fourscore and five thousand Assyrians are slain 
by one angel of the Lord, when encamped against 
Judah. Isa. 37 : 36. It is hard service indeed that is 
too hard for an angel. 

2. They are numerous. There are great multi- 
tudes of them. " Thousands of angels." Psa. 67 : 17. 
"A multitude of the heavenly host." Luke 2 : 13. 


An angel is more than an army; but what then are 
an army of angels ? 

3. They are faithful. They can do much for the 
saints, hut will they do it ? Yes, they are faithful ; 
they do the commandments of G-ocl. Psalm 103 : 20. 
Grod bids them keep, and they are faithful, and will 
keep, his sheep: we are taught to. pray that "the 
will of God may he done on earth, as it is in heaven ;" 
that men may be faithful as the angels of God. 

4. They are favorites; they behold the face of 
(rod, they dwell in his presence, they are admitted to 
stand before his throne, they can be heard ; they have 
favor in heaven, and therefore have they such power 
on earth. " Take heed that ye despise not one of these 
little ones; for I say unto you, that in heaven their 
angels do always behold the face of my Father which 
is in heaven." Matt. 18 : 10. Touch not mine anoint- 
ed, let alone my little ones, take heed how you offend 
them; their angels are before my Father, and are 
mighty with him, to engage his power for their aid 
and deliverance. 

the great security of the least of saints ! These 
mighty ones, these multitudes, these faithful ones, 
these favorites of heaven, the holy angels of God, have 
all received a charge from the Lord, to preserve and 
defend them: "'Lord, open his eyes, that he may 
see;' and behold, the mountain was full of horses 
and chariots of fire round about Elisha." 2 Kings, 
6 : 17. 

Should a mighty prince commit any subject of his 
to a potent and faithful life-guard, with this charge : 


"Look to this man, keep him in safety, see that he 
come to no harm; whoever offends, do you defend 
him ; wherever he goes, go you with him ; wherever 
he lodges, stand you as a guard about the house; 
while he sleeps, do you watch ; see that he want for 
nothing, let no hurt come to him :" if this were thy 
ease, in what great security wouldst thou count thyself. 
But 0, what is a life-guard of men to a guard of 
mighty angels? "Fear not, little flock;" in heaven 
your angels "behold the face of God, and in earth they 
have pitched their tents round about you. 

II. THE POWERS OF DARKNESS are delivered over in 
the covenant: Satan and all his instruments. We 
are naturally in "bondage. to Satan, held "captive by 
him at his will," 2 Timothy, 2 : 26 ; his prisoners, his 
slaves, his vassals. By the blood of the covenant, the 
Lord hath brought forth his prisoners and redeemed 
his captives, Zech. 9 : 11, and also hath spoiled prin- 
cipalities and powers, and led captivity captive. In 
this covenant there is deliverance of the prisoners, and 
a delivery over of them by whom they were held 
a jail-delivery, and a delivery of the jailers into their 
hands ; and they are delivered over bound, the god of 
this world in chains, limited, spoiled, banished, and 
cast out. " The gates of hell shall not prevail against 
it." Matt. 16 : 18. Tho gates of cities were anciently 
their special strength, and in them were their great 
councils held for the contriving and managing of all 
their concerns. By "hell," understand all that belong 
to that dark region, Satan and all his instruments, 


the dragon with his armies, the serpent and all his 
seed. By "the gates of hell," understand the power 
and policy, the combination and counsels of Satan and 
his whole party. These gates of hell shall not prevail 
against it, that is, against the church ; neither against 
the Head nor any member of it : they "shall not pre- 
vail;" that involves two things. 

1. They shall fight against it; they are all com- 
bined and listed against the church, making a war 
upon it. " Raze it, raze it, even to the foundation 
thereof. Down with it, root and branch ; let it not have 
a being, let it not have so much as a name under heav- 
en." Particular quarrels there may be between devil 
and devil; Herod against Pilate, and Pilate against 
Herod ; yet the tails of these smoking firebrands are 
united against the Lord and his anointed ones against 
their profession, against their religion, against the soul 
of every saint. Whatever veils or specious pretences 
they varnish their quarrel with, this it is that lies at 
the bottom of. all their counsels and machinations ; in 
this all their aims are concentrated to root out god- 
liness, and the professors of it, from the earth ; to de- 
ceive and destroy souls for ever. 

2. Though they shall fight against the church, yet 
they shall not overcome. They shall not prevail 
against it ; that is, not finally : in the end the victory 
shall be the saints'. Jerusalem shall be "a burden- 
some stone for all people," Zech. 12 : 3 ; such a stone 
that they shall not be able to lift, or move it out of 
its place ; it shall stand as a rock, against which the 
impetuous waves may dash themselves, but they can- 


not move it. Neither shall they he able to hear it. It 
shall crush those who "burden themselves with it. Those 
who shake the church are pulling a house ahout their 
ears, a rook upon their loins ; it shall break the backs 
of all those who contend against it ; they shall he cut 
in pieces that burden themselves with it, though ajl 
the earth, 'yea, and hell too, be gathered together 
against it. It. is a vain design that Satan and his 
partakers are driving on. " Why do the heathen rage, 
and the people imagine a vain thing?" Psalm 2:1. 
It is a vain design, and it is a fatal design to them- 
selves : " Thou shalt break them with a rod of iron, 
thou shalt dash them in pieces like a potter's vessel." 

In the first dawning of this glorious daylight, it 
was promised that the seed, of the woman should break 
the serpent's head. "I will put enmity between thee 
and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed ; 
it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his 
heel." Gen. .3 : 15. "Now is the judgment of this 
world ; now shall the prince of this world be cast out." 
John 12 : 31. Oast out ; whence ? Why, cast out of 
his kingdom, out of his hold, cast down from his th'rone 
and dominion. His prison is broken, and now the prey 
is taken from the strong, the captives of the mighty 
are taken away. 

But you say, "Was this indeed done at the death 
3f Christ, to which these words refer ? Does not Sa- 
ban still reign? Is he not still the god of this world, 
and the prince of the power of the air ? . Yea, what a 
hold has he yet of the saints that are in the earth ! 
What a tyrant is he to them ; how doss he entangle and 


ensnare them; what havoc does he make in their con- 
sciences ; lording it over them, leading them captives 
by lusts and temptations ; what a strong party has 
he still within them, bearing arms against their Lord, 
lighting against their souls. What sad inroads does 
he make upon their grace, upon their peace; they 
cannot rest for him day nor night, abroad nor at home, 
alone nor in company; he is ever following them; 
whithersoever they go, the devil is at their backs ; 
they cannot pray, nor read, nor spend a thought, nor 
cast a look, nor dispatch a sigh towards the Lord, but 
Satan 'stands by to resist and hinder them. AVhat a 
yoke has he still upon their neck ;' what clogs and 
weights has he still upon their loins; how do they 
mourn in their souls while he vexes them from day to 
day ; how do they groan, and travail in pain, sighing 
in themselves and waiting for their. redemption, How 
is it then said, Now is he cast out ?" Because now he 
hath received his judgment : " The prince.of this world 
is judged." John 16 : 11. Now is the fatal blow 
given, now is the serpent's .head broken, though he 
still may bruise and hang on the saints. The blow 
he levelled at our Lord has rebounded on his own 
head. Though he be as Grad, a serpent in the way, 
yet you may now tread upon this serpent and it shall 
not hurt you. The strong man is now bound ; if he 
be a god still, he is a god in chains, a prince in fetters ; 
he must ask leave of your Father, ere he can touch 
one hair of your heads. He cannot tempt you, nor 
cast a bank against you, nor shoot an arrow at you, 
without a commission from heaven. The devils are 


subject to you. He is cast out, and in your Lord's 
name you may cast him out ; you may be instruments 
to bring many a soul to repentance, that they may 
recover themselves out of the snares of the devil, who 
are held captive by him at his will. Every sinner 
that is converted by you, you have cast out a devil 
from that soul. 

Though he be an adversary still, yet is he such 
an adversary as may be resisted: "Whom resist, 
steadfast in the faith." 1 Pet. 5 : 9. And if you will 
resist, he shall flee from you. James 4:7. Stand, 
and your enemy runs. 

Nay, more, he is not only a conquered enemy, but 
is made your servant. This viper shall yield you 
medicine against his own poison. His smitings shall 
be an excellent oil; the messengers he sends to buffet 
you, the thorns he sticks in your flesh, shall be a pre- 
vention of greater evils. The very destruction he in- 
tends to bring upon you shall promote your salva- 
tion. His winds shall blow off your chaff, his floods 
shall wash away your filth, his earthquakes shall open 
your prison-doors, his tempests shall drive you to har- 
bor. Some men need a tempest to save them from a 

Nay, once more, he is not low enough yet; he 
shall be brought yet lower. You have assurance of 
his total and final overthrow. "The God of peace 
shall bruise Satan under your feet shortly." Romans 
16 : 20. " The devil shall be cast into the lake of fire 
and brimstone." Rev. 20 : 10. It is but a little while, 
and when he has done his work he shall be sent to 


his place, where he shall be shut up, and a seal set 
upon him; whence he shall come out no more for 
ever. He shall tempt no more, vex no more, deceive 
no more, destroy no more, torment you no more ; he 
shall be thrust out, he shall be chained up ; the tor- 
mentor shall be tormented day and night for ever and 

Stand, Christians, stand your ground a little while ; 
follow your work, hold up your holy profession, hold 
on your holy course; keep your hearts, keep your 
garments, keep on your armor, keep corruption under, 
resist temptation, bear your affliction ; hold out faith 
and patience, fight against your adversaries, watch 
with your Lord this one hour, and behold, he that shall 
come, will come ; he cometh quickly, and he that is 
in the world shall be consumed with the breath of his 
mouth, and destroyed with the brightness of his ap- 
pearing. He shall be cast out, he shall be cast down, 
and rise no more for ever. 

III. God has put DEATH into the covenant. u Wheth- 
er Paul, or Apollos, or Cephas, or the world, or life, 
or death, all are yours." 1 Cor. 3 : 21. Death ! there 
is a great purchase, you will say; what advantage 
is that ? Yes, death is an advantage. To die is gain. 

1. The commission of death is changed. It was 
once, Take him, jailer; away with him, carry him to 
prison, there to be reserved to the judgment of the 
great day. It is now, Take him, janitor; take him, 
porter ; take him in, give him an entrance into his 


Mastei's joy. Death does but take the bride when 
she is ready, and lodges her in. the chamber of the 
bridegroom; this made death the apostle's desire: "I 
desire to depart, and to be with Christ, which is far 
better." Phil. 1 : 23. 

2. Death is conquered. "What does this mean? 
Your enemy is yours ; your enemy is subjected to 
you ; a conquered enemy is made a tributary ; death 
is disarmed, it has lost its sting. When a serpent has 
lost its sting, you may take it into your bosom. He 
that can say, "Death, where is thy sting?" may go 
on and add, "Thanks be to Grocl, which hath given 
me the victory." A signet sent from heaven with a 
death's head, is a precious token. Come, Christians, 
be of good courage ; set your feet on the neck of this 
king of terrors. 

3. Death is at once the destruction of all their 
enemies. "When once death has done its office upon 
them, then farewell Edora, and Ammon, and Amalek, 
and Egypt farewell the pricking brier and the griev- 
ing thorn ; then farewell sin and sorrow for ever : the 
Egyptians they have seen and feared and felt to-day, 
they shall never see again for ever. It destroys itself, 
the saints' last enemy, by destroying them ; it has its 
welcome and farewell the same moment ; it is but 
"Welcome death!" and "Farewell death for ever!" 
Death dies with the saints ; once dead, they die no 
more for ever ; mortality is swallowed up of life ; 
death is cast into the lake of fire ; that is its region ; 
there, there souls die, and die, and die again, over 
and over, for ever and ever: but for the saints, it 


does but set them on the banks of that good land., 
whither it cannot follow them. Our Lord by death, 
by ours as well as his own, has delivered those who 
" through fear of death were all their lifetime subject 
to bondage." 

Christians, you rnay now not only with patience, * 
but with desire, expect the assault of this king of ter- 
rors. " "What, shall tribulation, and persecution, and 
famine, and nakedness, and peril, and sword ; shall 
sorrows and fears and mortality die with me ? Yea, 
shall sin die with me ? then welcome death. Lord, 
strengthen me this once, let me die with the Philis- 
tines." Would it be good for thee to be with thy 
Father ; in the bosom of thy Bridegroom ; the pres- 
ence-chamber of thy Lord and Love ? Would it be 
a mercy to thee to weep no more, fear no more, suffer 
no more, be tempted no more, sin no more; to.be 
unclothed of corruption, and be clothed upon with 
immortality and incorruption ? Then bid death wel- 

Blessed souls, when you come ashore, and see the 
light, the love, the joy, the rest, the glory, that is on 
the other side, you will then more fully understand 
what this meaneth, " Death is yours." He knew 
something, who said, u I cannot tell you what sweet 
pain and delightsome torments are in Christ's love ; I 
often challenge time, that holdeth us asunder ; I have 
for the present a sick life, much pain, and much love- 
sickness for Christ ; what would I give to have a 
bed made for my wearied soul in his bosom! 
when shall we meet ? how long is it to the dawning 


of. the marriage-day? ^ sweet Lord Jesus, take wide 
steps : come over the mountains at one stride. my 
Beloved, flee as a roe, or a young hart upon the moun- 
tains of separation. if he would fold the heavens 
together like an old cloak, and shovel time and days 
out of the way, and come quickly." 

IV. God hath put THE KINGDOM into this covenant : 
" Theirs is the kingdom of heaven." Matt. 5:3. " It 
is your Father's good pleasure to give you the king- 
dom." Luke 12 : 82. Glorious things are spoken, of 
thee, thou city of God. I might here enlarge in 
describing the glory of this kingdom; hut when I 
have said all, I must at last leave it within the veil ; 
and therefore shall only tell you from the apostle, 
"Bye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have 
entered into the heart of man, the things which God 
hath prepared for them that love him," etc. 1 Cor. 
2 : 9. "When by the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, 
the eyes of your understandings are opened, ye shall 
know " what is the hope of his calling, and what the 
riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints." 
Eph. 1 : 18. 




GOD hath put into the covenant ALL THE MEANS OP 
SALVATION all things necessary to our obtaining the 
everlasting kingdom. 

All the outward means of salvation. Ordinances 
the word, sacraments, and prayer ; officers prophets, 
apostles, evangelists, pastors, and teachers. Ephes. 
4:11,12; 1 Cor. 3:22. 

All the inward means of salvation. Every grace, 
every duty; our obtaining the one, and performing 
the other; these are all comprehended in the second 
part of that great promise, "THEY SHALL BE MY 
PEOPLE." Two things are hereby signified : 

The first is, I will account you and reckon you for 
mine. You shall have the privilege and the blessings 
of my people. I will set you apart, and separate you 
to myself, out of all the tribes and kindreds of the 
earth ; and will avouch you for my portion and pecu- 
liar possession. I will set you as the apple of mine 
eye, as a seal upon my heart, and upon mine arm. I 
will mark you out for the people of my love ; of you 
will I take care, -for you will I provide, with you are 
my delights, over you will I rejoice, with you will I 
dwell, and you shall dwell with me for ever. 

The other is, I will not only reckon you for my 
people, but I will undertake for you, that you shall 
consent to me, accept of me, own me, follow me, 


and cleave to me as my people. I will not only sep- 
arate you to myself, but I will fashion you for my- 
self; I will sanctify you, and guide you, and teach 
you, and help you. I will fulfil in you all the good 
pleasure of my will ; I will work all your works in 
you ; I will avouch you for my people, and you shall 
avouch me for your G-od. You shall love me, fear 
me, ohey me ; I will keep, you from falling, and pre- 
serve you to my heavenly kingdom. 

Particularly, the Lord hath promised to give them, 
1. A new heart ; 2. A heart to know the Lord ; 3. One 
heart ; 4. A heart of flesh ; 5. A heart to love the Lord ; 
6. A heart to fear the Lord ; 7. A heart to obey the 
Lord ; 8. A heart to endure to the end. 


"A new heart will I give you, and a new spirit 
will I put within you." Bzek. 36 : 26. This new 
heart is the genus comprising all the graces noticed in 
the chapters which follow ; and therefore the less shall 
suffice to be spoken of it here. A new heart, that is, 
not physically new in regard to substance, hut mor- 
ally only in regard to qualities. 

This new heart signifies both another heart, and a 
more excellent heart. It is said of Caleb, Numbers 
14 : 24, that he had another heart. And this other 
heart is declared to be a more excellent heart than 
was in the rest of the people. While they either fol- 
lowed not the Lord, or did so but haltingly, he fol- 
lowed the Lord fully. i{ A man of understanding is of 
an excellent spirit." Prov. 17 : 27. 


There is another heart that is not a new heart. 
Nebuchadnezzar had another, but no new heart the 
heart of a beast for the heart of a man : an evil heart 
grown worse is not a new heart, but the old heart 
grown older. We read that when Saul was anointed 
king, G-od gave him another heart, 1 Sam. 10 : 9 : 
this was a more excellent heart than he had before, 
and yet not the heart here promised. He gave to 
him another heart, that is.; the spirit of government ; 
the heart of a king instead of the heart of a private 
person ; a more public, enlarged, heroic heart ; the 
heart of a king, fitted to the station and office of a 

The excellences of this new heart are not natural, 
but spiritual excellences, as will appear more in the 
handling of the particular graces promised ; and are 
such as fit Christians for their new state, work, and 

For their new state. Christians are made the 
children of G-od, vessels of honor, a royal priesthood, 
a holy nation, a peculiar people ; and God gives them 
a heart answering to the dignity of their high calling. 
For their new work. A. Christian hath better 
work to do than other men : while their business lies 
all here below, in this earth, in their fields and vine- 
yards, etc., Christians' work lies above, with their G-od 
and their Jesus, and within, about their nobler and 
immortal part ; their work is spiritual, and such is 
the heart that is given to them. 

For their new reward. God intends better things 
for them ; a better portion, -a better hope, better com- 


forts, joys, and delights here, and a better inheritance 
hereafter ; and he prepares them Letter hearts to re- 
ceive these better things; he will not put his new 
wine into old bottles. 

The excellences of this new heart may be reduced 
to these three : % ; 

1. A new light) discovering the dignity of their 
state, the spirituality of their work, the glory of their 

2. A new law, or frame, or bent of spirit, inclin- 
ing, disposing, and fitting them to all that which they 
are made for. And this is the meaning of God's writ- 
ing his law in the heart. The law written in the 
heart signifies not only the law made known in the 
heart, but the heart made suitable to the law, and 
adapted to the obedience of it. There is a kind of 
connaturalness between the new heart and all that 
the law requires. 

3. A new power, strengthening them for their new 
work. "We have all these mentioned in one scrip- 
ture : " God hath not given us the spirit of fear, but 
of power, and of love, and of a sound mind." 2 Tim. 
1:7. A sound mind, there is the new light : a spirit 
of love, there is the new law, or frame, and with these 
a spirit of power. 

In sum, this new heart is the divine nature, the 
image of God renewed, the life of God begotten, 
Christ formed in them. A heart after God's own 
heart, containing in it all those graces of the Spirit, 
wherein stand their likeness to God and their capa- 
city of serving and enjoying him. This is the heart 


the Lord will give : " A new heart will I give unto 

Against all these glorious things promised, it would 
be objected, " A kingdom promised ! glory and honor 
and everlasting blessedness granted ! Alas, what is 
all this to me? To whom is it promised; or upon 
what terms ? When I consider what is required, it 
is all one to me as if there had been nothing prom- 
ised. The way to this blessedness is too narrow, the 
gate is too strait for me ever to hope to enter. "What- 
ever the crown be, the strictness and severities of a 
Christian course, the very foresight of them does 
amaze and confound me. Live a new life ! deny my- 
self, take up my cross, follow Christ, spend my days 
in fasting and praying and mourning ; live by rule, 
look to every step, to every word, to every thought 
. all these things are against me. A new life, a new 
course : if this be it, I shall never bear it. It is all 
one to me as if there had been no Christ, no gospel , 
no kingdom promised, if it cannot be obtained upon 
other terms than these. I may even as well sit down 
as I am, and run the venture of what follows, as to 
feed myself with hopes of that which I see I can never 
obtain. If I do but move heavenwards, the stream 
carries me down; if I do but take up a thought, 
make an essay, set a foot forward towards this new 
course, I find my old things hang upon my heels. 
My old customs, my old companions, my old pleas- 
ures and ease and liberties quickly pull me back. 
what shall I do ? I must be undone, I must be a lost 
and condemned wretch. Fain I would be happy, but 

Heaven Opened. . 


I cannot be holy. I dread, I often tremble to think 
of losing Christ, and the blessings of his gospel ; hut 
this wretched heart is too hard for me, and will not 
come. I am ashamed, I am plagued to think what I 
am likely to lose, and for how little ; but I cannot 
help it ; the way is such that this foolish heart will 
never endure it." 

Why, hearken, soul ; the Lord who hath called 
thee to this new course, will give tliee a new heart. 
And there is not any thing required in a holy life so 
irksome and so contrary to thee, but this new heart 
is so fitted and suited to it that it will become easy to 
thee. Its pain will be pleasant, its severity will be 
liberty, its very drudgery, as thou countest it, will be 
a great delight. "I delight to do thy will, my 
God ; yea, thy law is within my heart." Psa. 40 : 8. 
And of the renewed soul it is said, " His delight is in 
the law of the Lord :" in the original, his will, his 
heart, is in the law. Psa. 1 : 2. The law is in the 
heart, and his heart is in the law. God's will and his 
are the same. "Whatever God bids him do, his heart 
bids him do, and his hand will never say his heart 
nay. He that delights in the law because it is a law 
commanding such things, will never grudge to do 
what it commands. 

Where it is a pleasure to be commanded, it is no 
pain to obey. Whatever work the law cuts him out, 
this work he loves. Bid him pray, bid him watch, 
bid Mm walk humbly with his God; it is work he 
loves ; it is in his heart to do it. Bid a saint draw 
nigh to God in any duty ; it is as if you bade the 


hungry to eat, or the thirsty to drink, the naked to 
he clothed, the "beggar to come for alms, or the poor 
laborer for a day's work. Bid a Christian deny him- 
self, or crucify his flesh; it is the same as if you hade 
him deny his enemy, revenge himself on his enemy : 
such revenge is sweet. But how pleasant is it to 
him to he called to a life of praise ; to live above in 
the light, in the love, in the joy of the Lord ; to he 
searching and studying and looking into, and admir- 
ing those everlasting treasures of spiritual and heav- 
enly delights laid up in God ; to behold his face, to 
live in his presence, and to dwell in the light of his 
countenance! It is true, there is some remaining 
difficulty and irksomeness in the sweetest works of 
religion, as far forth as the heart is unrenewecl and is 
yet carnal. "Deny myself; mortify lust ; forsake my 
companions ; withdraw from iniquity ! why, what is 
this but to cut off my hand ; to pluck out my eyes ; 
to tear mya flesh ? "Walk with God ; seek his face ; 
dwell in his presence ! it is all ojie as to bid me feed 
: on the air, wander on the mountains, dwell in the 
wilderness ; and as much pleasure can I find in the 
one as in the other*" J.t is so indeed, as far as thou 
remainest carnal ; the Lord G-od and all his ways are 
a wilderness, a land of darkness to thee ; but as much 
as thou hast of this new heart, so much ease and 
pleasure thou wilt find herein. 

Desponding soul, thou sayest thou art yet ignorant, 
and hast little knowledge of the way of the Lord ; bat 
behold a new light to lead thee. Thou art yet carnal, 
and thy heart is contrary, and ever contending with 


God ; but the new nature will end the strife. Thou 
art weak and impotent, the work is too hard for thee. 
if thou lovedst it ever so well ; hut how will this he 
when thou art endued with power from on high ? 

friend, wouldst thou indeed live this new life ? 
then get this new heart. " But 0, there lies the diffi- 
culty; how or where shall I get it?" Why, have re- 
course to the covenant; there it lies for thee. "But 
how shall I get it thence ?" Why, hath not the Lord 
promised to give it thee? take the word from his 
mouth, and put it into thine own ; turn the word of 
promise into a prayer. Doth he say, "I will give?" 
let thy soul answer, "Give, Lord, give me this 
new heart. I am weary, Lord, and thou art weary 
also of this wicked heart : at once ease thyself and 
me ; take away this, and give me a better heart." 
Turn the word of promise into a prayer, and then 
turn the word of prayer into a word of faith. He 
says, "Twill give;" let thy faith say, ".Thou wilt 
give, I shall have it ; since thou., hast said, thy ser- 
vant may also boldly say, thou wilt do it. Thou wilt 
give me a "better heart. Farewell, my old sins, lusts, 
and companions ; farewell, my old pleasures and ways ; 
now for heaven in earnest, now welcome the strait 
gate, the new and living way. Old things are passed 
away, all things shall become new." Turn the word 
of promise into a prayer, turn thy prayer into a word 
of faith, and G-od will turn the word of faith into a 
word of command. "Be it according to thy word. 
Let there he a new light, let there be a new law, let 
there be a new power, let there no more be a spirit of 



foar in this heart, but a spirit of power, of love, and 
of a sound mind." And as when he said in the crea- 
tion of the great world, " Let there be light," let there 
"be a firmament, let there "be a sun and moon, it was 
so ; so when he shall say, in the new creation of thy 
little world, Let there be light, let there be love, let 
there be power let us again make man in our image, 
after our own likeness, it shall be so. The Lord hath 
said, I will ; let thy prayer say, Do it, Lord ; let thy 
faith say, Thou wilt do it ; and God will say, Amen. 
So be it. 




"I WILL give them a heart to know me." Jer. 
24 : 7. The knowledge of God is the first excellency 
of the new heart. As in the old, so in the new crea- 
tion, as was said before, the first word is, "Let there 
he light." There is not so glorious a preeminence of 
day ahove night, as of the knowledge above the igno- 
rance of God. As the firmament without a snn, as 
the body without an eye, so is the soul without know- 
ledge. "What this knowledge of Grod here promised is, 
will appear, if we consider its object and its act. 

. The object of this knowledge is God : not only the 
nature or being of God, manifested in his essential 
perfections, his glorious attributes, his infinitencss, 
eternity, omnipotence, in his personal relations, the 
subsistences in the godhead ; but God in Christ, God 
in covenant ; yea, the whole mind and will of God, 
all that which God hath revealed to us as our duty 
or happiness. God known in the heart, is the wholo 
Bible opened: the law opened, the gospel opened; 
duties, comforts, privileges -made manifest. Christ 
opened in his sufferings, in his satisfaction, in his 
Spirit, in all the riches of his glory : the whole mys- 
tery of godliness revealed. The heart opened, man 
made known to himself, all the depths of the heart, 
all the deceits of the heart, all the faculties and pow- 


ers of the heart, with their motions, operations, in- 
clinations, the rectitude or obliquities of them. Heav- 
en opened, the crown, the kingdom known ; everlast- 
ing rest, glory, honor, immortality "brought to light. 
Hell opened, sin known, the devil known, wrath, 
temptation, the curse, eternal fire known. All this, 
even all that God is, and all that he has revealed in 
his word and works, are the object of this knowledge 
of G-od. 

The. act. To know, is to apprehend, or understand 
God, and the things of God : "Let him that glorieth, 
glory in this, that he understandeth and knoweth me." 
Jer. 9:24. "That ye may be able to comprehend 
with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and 
depth, and height, and to know the love of Christ." 
Epli. 3 : 18, 19. This apprehension of God doth not 
barely denote our having received some intellectual or 
metaphysical notions of God, and the truths that are 
in him ; but further, it denotes, 

An approbation of him ; an approving or liking 
the things that are excellent: "That your love may 
abound yet more and more, in knowledge and in all 
judgment, that ye may approve things that are excel- 
lent." Phil. 1:9, 10. 

Appropriation. The knowing of God as a recon- 
ciled God ; a God, and a God to me ; good, and good 
to me ; wise, and wise for me ; my Lord and my God. 
To know God in Christ, reconciled through Christ, 
propitious through Christ, this is saving knowledge. 
To know and not possess, to see and not eat^to know 
an angry God, a wrathful God, a God lost to know 


goodness, mercy, loving-kindness, compassion, all-suf- 
ficiency, and to have the heart recur, "What is this 
to thee? this is none of thine" the damned thus 
know, and die. 

Affection. As "they that know thy name will 
put their trust in thee," Psalm 9 : 10, so those that 
know thy name will love thee, and fear thee, and re- 
joice in thee, and bless thy narn|> To know and hate 
God, to know and contemn G-od, to know and fly from 
God, to know and blaspheme and curse God, the devils 
thus know and tremble. 

But especially that which distinguishes this sav- 
ing from common knowledge is, its power and its 

I. ITS POWER. The knowledge of God is mighty 
my preaching was not weak, but mighty in you, 2 Cor. 
13 : 3. It hath, 

1. A transforming- power. "We all, with open 
face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are 
changed into the same image." 2 Cor. 3 : 18. "Be 
ye not conformed to this present world, but be ye 
transformed by the renewing of your minds." Rom. 
12 : 2. The renovation of the mind both is this change, 
and works it further upon the whole soul ; this new 
light is the new creature ; old things pass away, all 
things become new, where the mind is savingly en- 
lightened. God known in the soul, is God united 
with the soul ; Christ revealed in the heart, is Christ 
formed upon the heart ; there is life in this light, it is 
no other than the light of life. The knowledge of God 
comprehends, is involved in, and inspirits and ani- 


rpates every grace and duty. As the same soul in the 
eye sees, in the ear hears, in the palate tastes as the 
same juice is in the olive fatness, in the fig-tree sweet- 
ness, in the oak strength, in the rose fragrancy, in the 
lily beauty ; so the same grace, which in the mind is 
light, in the heart is love', holy desire, holy fear, holy 
joy. Thus one says, that as feeling is inseparable from 
all the organs of sense as the eye feels and sees, the 
ear feels and hears, the palate feels and tastes, the 
nostrils feel and smell; so knowledge is involved in 
every grace. Faith knows and believes, charity knows 
and loves, temperance knows and abstains, patience 
knows and suffers, humility knows and stoops, repent- 
ance knows and mourns, obedience knows and does, 
compassion knows and pities, hope knows and expects, 
confidence knows and rejoices ; and therefore we be- 
lieve, and love, and obey, and hope, and rejoice, because 
we know. 

G-od gives us this knowledge as the eye of our 
souls, and by that eye he enters with all his power and 
glory ; that ye may know the love of Christ, which 
passeth knowledge, and be filled with all the fulness 
of God. Eph. 3 : 19. Daylight is not that light we 
receive by reflection from the moon and stars, at sec- 
ond-hand : when the sun is risen and come in among 
us, then it is day ; when the Sun of righteousness is 
risen in the heart, there is the light of life ; G-od is 
and God dwells in .this light, and where God dwells 
every unclean thing vanishes. Can darkness dwell 
with the sun ; can death dwell with life ? According 
to the measure of the manifestation of God in us, so 


far forth is sin necessarily vanished. Thou art but 
the carcass of a Christian, the light that is in thee is 
darkness, the life that is in thee is death, if thou be 
not in the whole man renewed after the image of him 
that created thee. If Christ be not formed in thy 
heart, if the love, the humility, the meekness, the 
patience, 'the compassion, the holiness of the Lord 
Jesus be not begotten in thee, whatever thou know- 
est, thou knowest nothing as thou oughtest to know ; 
if thou hast all knowledge and hast not charity, and 
so if thou hast all knowledge and hast not humility, 
meekness, holiness, thou art but as sounding brass, or 
a tinkling cymbal. 

Doubting Christian, that complainesfc of and be- 
wailest thine ignorance, and feavest that thou knowest 
not God, look upwards where his glory dwells ; lift 
up thine eyes and see. Or if thou canst not see, lift 
up thy heart for eyes : " Lord, where dwellest thou ? 
let me see thy face, show me thy glory, pity the blind, 
let my blind eyes be opened, and my tongue shall be 
loosed and speak forth thy praise." Look upward, 
and if yet thou seest not thy God, look inward: 
canst thou see his face in thy soul? canst thou see 
his image on thy heart ? canst thou behold in this 
glass the glory of the Lord, and find thyself changed 
into his image ? then comfort thy heart, how short- 
sighted soever thou seemest to be, how dim soever thy 
candle burns, how weak soever in the knowledge of 
God thou complainest thou art, thou hast seen God, 
thou hast seen his face in peace. God that com- 
manded the light to shine out of darkness, hathshined 


into tliy heart, and given thee the knowledge of his 
glory in the face of Jesus Christ. 

2. A fructifying power. This sunshine makes a 
fruitful soil. My desire for you, saith the apostle, is 
"that ye might be filled with the knowledge of his 
will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding ; that 
ye might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, 
being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in 
the knowledge of God ; strengthened with all might, 
according to his glorious power, unto all patience and 
long-suffering with joyfulness." Col. 1 : 9-11. " Be- 
ing filled with the fruits of righteousness, which are 
by Jesus Christ, unto the glory and praise of God,'.' 
Phil. 1:11} full of light and full of love, of faith, of 
patience, of humility, and fruitful in every good work. 
"A good man, out of the good treasure of the heart, 
bringeth forth good things ; and an evil man, out of 
the evil treasure, bringeth forth evil things." Matt. 
12 : 35. A good man hath a good treasure within 
him, a treasure of heavenly wisdom, of divine truth, 
a treasure of light ; God hath shined into his heart ; 
he is filled with all the fulness of God ; and what is 
laid up within, he brings forth without. An evil man 
hath an evil treasure, Satan hath been filling his 
heart. "Why hath Satan filled thy heart?" Acts 
5 : 3. The treasures of darkness are there, a treas- 
ure of lust and lies ; falsehood and folly are found 
with him : these treasures of darkness within bring 
forth darkness; dark souls lead dark lives; their way 
is dark, their deeds are darkness. Oh, how fruitful 
are sinners in their unfruitful works! "filled with 


all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covet- " 
ousness, maliciousness, envy, murder, debate, deceit, 
malignity." Romans 1 : 29, 30. Their hearts arc 
full, and thereupon their mouths full, their eyes full, 
their hands full ; mouths full of cursings, eyes full of 
adultery, hands full of violence, filled with all un- 
righteousness. " generation of vipers, how can ye, 
being evil," having such hearts, " speak good things?" 
All is evil that comes from you ; and how can it be 
otherwise ? Out of the abundance of the heart the 
mouth speaks. And in like manner, generation of 
believers, how can ye, being good, but bring forth 
good things ? Or how can you say or think there is a 
treasure of grace, a fountain of light within, when no 
streams spring forth? Penury in the life speaks no 
great plenty in the heart ; the truths of God within 
you are the seed of God, the good seed that he sows 
in his fields : where there is good seed sown in good 
ground, you will expect a fruitful ^harvest ; a bar- 
ren crop speaks a barren soil, or rio; good seed sown 

"Hereby we do know that we know him, if we 
keep his commandments." 1 John, 2:3. We ;khow 
Gocl. "But are you sure of it? Are you not mista- 
ken?" No, we are not mistaken; we know that we 
know him. " But how do you know it?" "Why, how 
are trees known ? By their fruits ye shall know them. 
" How do ye 3mow that this is indeed the tree of know- 
ledge ?" Why, see what fruits are hanging upon it : 
we keep the commandments; here is obedience grow- 
ing, here is holiness and righteousness and mercy. 



Doubtless this is the right tree, for "behold all the 
commandments, the two tables hanging upon the 
"boughs of it, and not "broken, "but kept and observed. 
"We may as well say obedience is no obedience, duty 
is no duty, faith and love and humility and patience 
are not what they are. as that the tree that brings 
forth this fruit is not the tree of knowledge. -" Wo 
knowthat we know him, because we keep his com- 
mandments." Yea, and this tree of knowledge is the 
tree of life too, both in one.: "A tree of life to them 
< that lay hold upon her." Prov. 3 : 18. "Where these 
fruits are not found, where there are nothing but 
shows and painted fruits where there are nothing 
but the fruits of unrighteousness, contention, strife, 
covetousness, sensuality, and the like he is very ig- 
* norant indeed |hat is not able to say, Whatever I am 
\\ ignorant of, this one thing I know, that I know not 

^V"" ^ 

' . Grod. Christian, boast not of what thou hast, but 
consider what tlbu doest ; try thy head by thy heart, 
and thy heart bjflhy hand ; judge of thy light by thy 
love, and thy love by thy life; say not that God hath 
shined into thy heart, unless thy light shine, thy works 

"shine. before men: "The path of the just shineth." 
Prov. 4 : 18. It is but a form of knowledge that brings 
forth but a form of godliness; he that holdeth the 

"truth in unrighteousness, ha.th not the truth in him. 
Thou sayest thou knowest the Lord, but what say 
thy ways? Do these speak the same things? Ac- 
tion is the best interpreter of the inner man : feel the 
pulses of thy heart ; what watchfulness, what holiness 
'has thy knowledge brought forth ? Hast thou received 


all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covet- 
ousness, maliciousness, envy, murder, debate, deceit, 
malignity." Romans 1 : 29, 30. Their hearts are 
full, and thereupon their mouths full, their eyes full, 
their hands full ; mouths full of cursings, eyes full of 
adultery, hands full of violence, filled with all un- 
righteousness. " generation of vipers, how can ye, 
being evil," having such hearts, "speak good things?" 
All is evil that comes from you ; and how can it be 
otherwise? Out of the abundance of the heart the 
mouth speaks. And in like manner, generation of 
believers, how can ye, being good, but bring forth 
good things? Or how can you say or think there is a 
treasure of grace, a fountain of light within, when no 
streams spring forth ? Penury in the life speaks no 
great plenty in the heart ; the truths of (rod within 
you are the seed of God, the good seed that he sows 
in his fields : where there is good seed sown in good 
ground, you will expect a fruitful harvest ; a bar- 
ren crop speaks a barren soil, or no good seed sown 

"Hereby we do know that we know him, if we 
keep his commandments." 1 John, 2 : 3. We know 
God. "But are you sure of it? Are you not mista- 
ken?" No, we are not mistaken; we know that we 
know him. " But how do you know it?" Why, how 
are trees known ? By their fruits ye shall know them. 
" How do ye know that this is indeed the tree of know- 
ledge ?" Why, see what fruits are hanging upon it : 
we keep the commandments ; here is obedience grow- 
ing, here is holiness and righteousness and mercy. 


Doubtless this is the right tree, for "behold all the 
commandments, the two tables hanging upon the 
houghs of it, and not broken, but kept and observed. 
"We may as well say obedience is no obedience, duty 
is no duty, faith and love and humility and patience 
are not what they are. as that the tree that brings 
forth this fruit is not the tree of knowledge. " Wo 
know that we know him, because we keep his com- 
mandments." Yea, and this tree of knowledge is the 
tree of life too, both in one : "A tree of life to them 
that lay hold upon her." Prov. 3 : 18. "Where these 
fruits are not found, where there are nothing but 
shows and painted fruits where there are nothing 
but the fruits of unrighteousness, contention, strife, 
covetousness, sensuality, and the like he is very ig- 
norant indeed that is not able to say, Whatever I am 
ignorant of, this one thing I know, that I know not 
God. Christian, boast not of what thou hast, but 
consider what tlipu doest ; try thy head by thy heart, 
and thy heart byHhy hand ; judge of thy light by thy 
love, and thy love by thy life ; say not that Clod hath 
shined into thy heart, unless thy light shine, thy works 
shine before men: "The path of the just shineth." 
Prov. 4 : 18. It is but a form of knowledge that brings 
forth but a form of godliness ; he that holdeth the 
truth in unrighteousness, hath not the truth in him. 
Thou sayest thou knowest the Lord, but what say 
thy ways? Do these speak the same things? Ac- 
tion is the best interpreter of the inner man : feel the 
pulses of thy heart ; what watchfulness, what holiness 
has thy knowledge brought forth? Hast thou received 


the Spirit, who yet walkest in the flesh? "What, 
heaven in thy heart, and naught "but earth in thy 
hand; truth in thy heart, and lies in thy mouth; 
holiness in thy heart, glory in thy heart, and in thy 
tongue nothing hut filth or froth ? "What, a heart so 
full, and a life so empty ; how can these things be ? 
Has the light in thy heart given laws only to thy heart ? 
or does thy heart submit, while thy tongue rebels and 
thou kickest with the heel? 

"Woe to us Christians, that sinners should be so 
full, and saints so empty; that they should speak 
what they have seen with their father, and we should 
speak no more what we have seen with our Father ; 
that oaths, and lies, and blasphemies, and scoffs, and 
cursing should be so rife in their mouths, and that 
truth and goodness and holiness, blessings and praises, 
should be no more in ours; that there should be so 
much guile in their lips, and so little grace in ours ; 
that the shade should be more fruitful than the sun ; 
that the good ground should be the omy barren ground ; 
that their habitations should be so full of violence and 
oppression and wantonness, and no more mercy and 
righteousness and sobriety in ours. 

"Woe to us, that we know so much to so little pur- 
pose; that we should be bushels to hide, and not 
rather candlesticks to hold forth the candle of the 
Lord he has lighted up in us. how many dark 
souls might our candle lead on to the sun : the light 
that is in Israel might do much towards turning Egypt 
into a Goshen. Speak, Christians, speak what you 
have seen, and testify what you have believed : bring 


forth, out of your treasure ; pity the blind world, or at 
least be more helpful one -to another. Instruct as you 
have been instructed ; convince as you have been con- 
vinced ; comfort as you have been comforted of Grod. 
Outvie sinners; let not their mouths be so full of 
cursing as yours of blessing ; while theirs are so full 
of blasphemies, let it be said of you as of your Lord, 
Full of grace are their lips. G-ood words are not 
wind ; you may reckon them not among the leaves, 
but the fruit. While you are speaking of the things 
of Grod, you are therein doing the will of God. I con- 
fess the proverb is true, The greatest talkers are not 
always the greatest doevs. But it is true also, he is 
seldom a great doer that hath nothing to say. There 
is a speaking which is our doing. There is a speak- 
ing in a way of boasting, to magnify and set up our- 
selves ; beware of that : and there is a speaking to the 
use of edifying, to build up our brethren. "When we 
are speaking to instruct, to convince, to awaken, and 
whet on our own and other spirits to our work, we are 
then doing our work. Speak, Christians, and speak 
often the things that you know ; but let me add, let 
your lives speak also, and not your lips only. If you 
would not be vain talkers, nor all tongue, let your 
lips speak, and your hands speak, and your feet speak ; 
let your works and your ways speak the wonderful 
things of Grod. Bring forth what you have received : 
he that is all inside, and he that is all outside, arc 
equally nothing. The one is a shadow without sub- 
stance, the other's substance is but a shadow ; the one 
is,, a deceiver, the other a deceived soul ; the one boasts 


himself, the other thinks himself something ; but nei- 
ther is any thing. 

Christians, he full of good fruits, and you will 
make full proof that your wisdom is from above. 
"If ye know these things, happy are ye if ye do 

Feeble Christian, that knowest but little of Gfod 
and callest that little nothing, while thou doubtest 
whether the light hath shined into thee,- dost thou 
walk in the little light thou hast ; dost thou shine as 
a light in the world ; dost thou know how to be holy 
and humble and harmless and honest ; dost thou live 
tinder the power of those truths thou knowest ; dost 
thou fear the Lord, and obey the voice of his ser- 
vants ? If so, trust in the Lord, and stay thyself on 
thy God ; thou art a child of light, though, through 
thy trembling heart, thou walkest in darkness. Hav- 
ing not seen, thou lovest ; and believing, thou shalt 
rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory. 

II. ITS SAVOR. u And maketh manifest the savor 
of his knowledge by us in every place." 2 Cor. 2 : 14. 
The knowledge of God is sweet-scented ; it casts forth 
a fragrancy wherever it comes. It hath a grateful- 
ness to the heart, and leaves sweet impressions on the 
senses of the saints. They taste that the Lord is 
gracious. As their breathings go up as sweet incenso, 
so his beams come down with like sweetness to them. 
The name of the Lord is "as ointment poured forth." 
Sol. Song 1:3. Why, what is his name? This is 
his name : " The Lord, the Lord God, merciful and 
gracious, long-suffering, and abundant in goodness 


and truth; keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving 
iniquity, transgression, and sin." Exod. 34 : 6, 7. 
Oil, what a bundle of myrrh, what a garden of spices 
is here inclosed. What a sweet-smelling savor does 
it send forth to those who have their senses exercised 
to discern both good and evil. 

The name of the Lord is a precious ointment, and 
the knowledge of G-od is this ointment poured forth. 
"Where God is known in the soul, there his sweet 
savor is shed abroad; The thoughts of God are pre- 
cious, the ways of God are pleasant to them that 
understand them. His fruit was sweet unto my 
taste. Oh, the ineffable pleasures of religion! The 
carnal' world count it an insipid thing ; they cannot 
taste ; and no wonder, for they do not see the things 
of G-od, nor can they, because they are spiritually 
discerned. Let G-od be savingly known, and then 
you will find what the savor of his knowledge is. 
This light is sweet, it is a pleasant thing to behold 
the sun. my soul, let thy walks, let thy dwellings 
be in this garden of the Lord ; let the sun shine, and 
the smell of his spices shall flow forth unto thee. 
my Lord, shed abroad thy sweet ointment, let the 
smell of thy garments refresh my soul. Let me taste 
and see ; let me see, and I shall taste that the Lord 
is gracious. 

Yanish, all ye carnal pleasures and sensual do*, 
lights ; these rosebuds rot, the flowers of your gar- 
dens wither, dead flies are in all your ointments, the 
light of the Lord hath shined all your glories into 
darkness. The waters of the sanctuary have made 


all your- waters brackish ; there remains no pleasure 
in them. 

He that hath known the Lord, hath more or less, 
according to the 'measure of his knowledge, received 
in the relish and sweetness of it; and what he hath 
received in, he sends forth before men ; he hath re- 
ceived, and he is a sweet savor. As the preachers, 
so the practitioners of piety are a sweet savor of 
Christ unto God, and hand down the sweetness of 
G-od unto men. They are of savory lips, and of sav- 
ory lives ; the savor of their graces is shed abroad in 
the churches of Christ. Carnal hearts send forth a 
stench instead of a sweet smell ; they are* all rotten- 
ness, the savor of a sepulchre is all they have ; their 
ways, their words, their very breath smell of a rotten 
heart ; yea, the very best they have, their pleasures, 
their garments, their gallantry, their powders and 
perfumes and sweet odors savor of their proud and 
vain and sensual hearts. But Oh, what a. scent do 
their oaths and their curses and their scoffs and their 
lies send forth! Sinners, learn to know the Lord, and 
this will quickly change your savor. And you that 
know any thing of God, think not that your know- 
ledge is saving, till your souls have received in, and 
your ways do send forth the savor of his knowledge. 

This second mark of a heart to know the Lord, 
namely, the sweet savor of this knowledge, the pleas- 
lire that it brings into the soul, might be of uncertain 
significance if it stood alone : there may some pleas- 
ure and joy arise from the common knowledge of 
God ; and sometimes there is but little joy where 


there is true religion. But where it is found in con- 
junction with the former mark, tha evidence of its 
soundness will be more full. Find all. together, this 
transforming, this fructifying, this savory .knowledge, 
and you may rest satisfied that this is the saving 
knowledge of God. And of this is the promise, "I 
will give them a heart to know me." 

Oh, how much need have we still to wait, and beg 
for. the accomplishment of this promise ; how little 
sound knowledge is there found among us ! Some 
are weak in knowledge who have been long taught 
of G-'od, and yet are not taught of God. . God hath 
been teaching them, but they have not learned of 
him ; they have had a good master, but have been 
poor scholars weak men, as we call men of low un- 
derstanding. Oh, how many weak souls are there, 
even among professing Christians, who, though they 
might have been teachers of others, yet need to bs 
taught the first principles of the oracles of God. 
Some men have not the knowledge of God ; I speak 
this to their shame. 1 Cor. 15 : 34. 

Others are men of knowledge, but of weak know- 
ledge, who know much, but to little purpose ; their 
great knowledge has little power in them ; their lusts 
are. too strong for their light. . I spake unto thee with 
a strong hand, and instructed thee. Isa. 8 : 11. If 
God have spoken to these men, yet his hand has not 
instructed them ; the nail has not been struck deep 
enough, it dwells in the head only, it has not reached 
their heart; they have an eye, but are far enough 
from having a heart to know the Lord. Their know- 


ledge doss not lead them on to religion, but must 
serve them instead of religion; it is made to serve, 
and not suffered to guide and govern to serve their 
turns, to serve their interest, to serve then' pride and 
their covetousness. Their knowledge of Grod makes 
them devils ; it helps them to play the hypocrite, to be 
deceivers of others, yea, and of their own souls. It 
will seek them out acceptable words, put prayers into 
their mouths, praises into their lips, spiritualize their 
language, furnish them with savory discourse, carry 
them plausibly through duties, which in name are for 
Grod's glory and the good of souls, but are in truth 
only sacrifices to their lusts. The knowledge of Grod 
humbleth, but this knowledge puffeth up, and lifteth 
up puffeth them up in their own, and lifteth them 
up in others' thoughts ; and when it has done this, it 
has done them all the service they have foot to do, 
unless it may be they have some worse work for it 
to make rents and divisions in the church of Christ, to 
maintain disputes, to cavil and quarrel, to divide and 
make parties, to make twenty religions out of one, 
till at length they make that one to be none. "While 
the apostle says, " Some men have not the knowledge 
of Grod, I speak this to your shame;" I may say 
also, Some men have the knowledge of Grod, I speak 
this to their shame. What, the knowledge of Grod, 
and no more humility ; the knowledge of Grod, and 
no more charity ? I speak this to your shame. Have 
the faith of Christ in respect of persons? have the 
knowledge of Gfod in. respect , of parties? know Grod, 
and yet divide and scatter and confound them that 


are of God? yea, and contend and quarrel about 
small differences, and protest, "Here is God, and 
not there; with us, and not with you?" when, it may 
be, a little charity would tell you, for the main, he 
may be with both; and so much uncliaritableness 
makes it a question whether he be with either. The 
more such men pretend to the knowledge of God, the 
greater their shame. 

Friends, beware you be not undone, either by 
your ignorance or your knowledge. Love not dark- 
ness, and call not darkness light ; call not that the 
knowledge of God which is not ; misuse not that 
which is. Hast thou no knowledge? "What, and 
such a "'promise before thee? "I will give them a 
heart to know me, they shall all know me." What, 
and such a gospel before thee, the work whereof is to 
open- blind eyes, and to turn from darkness to light ? 
Open thy mouth, sinner, and God will open thine 
eyes; "Ask, ,and thou shalt have; seek, and thou 
shalt find;" see, wink not at the light that shines 
round about thee ; love not darkness, if thou love not 
death. " This is eternal life, to know thee." What 
then is ignorance ? there 's death in thy heart, if there 
be no light in thine eye. 

Hast thou knowledge ? be thankful, and be hum- 
ble ; be not high-minded, but fear ; prize it, but do 
' not abuse it. Hast thou received the knowledge of 
the truth? Live under the power of the truth thou 
knowest ; resign up thyself to it to its transforming 
power ; give it leave to work, and to change thee into 
its own image ; let this new light make thee a new 



man to its governing power; let it teach thee and 
rule thee ; let it teach as one that has authority ; let- 
it rale till it hath put all thine enemies under thy 
feet ; till every thought, every imagination, and every 
high thing he made low, and "brought into captivity to 
Christ. Let not the light of the Lord help thee to do 
the devil's work ; let it not he fodder for thy flesh, 
lest it he fuel for thy flames ; let it not repent thy 
God nor thee, that ever thou'hadst such a talent com- 
mitted to thee ; let it neither he loss to God, nor the 
eternal loss of thine own soul. He that hath appeared 
on earth in beams of light will he revealed from heaven, 
in flames of fire rendering vengeance to all that know 
God hut obey not the gospel of Christ. "Woe to those 
that neither know nor obey ; hut Oh, what to those 
that obey not, though they know? 

Christian, know the Lord, but know and fear ; 
know and serve, know and honor thy God; know God, 
and know thyself, thy sin and thy misery, thy dan- 
gers and thy temptations ; know and mourn ; know 
and be -ashamed ; know, and fear, and watch, and 
fight, and overcome. Know God, and know Ms wihV 
thy duty and thy way, thy privileges hnA. opportuni- 
ties, thy race and thy crown. Know, and do, and run, 
and suffer, and wait, and hope, and rejoice in hope of 
the glory of God. Know God, but God in Christ, God 
. reconciled, pardoning, 'absolving, accepting through 
him. Know, and believe, accept, adventure upon, 
resign, commit thyself to him. Know thy God, and 
behold him ; look upon thy God in his power, in his 
wisdom, in his holiness, in his goodness, in his loving- 


kindness, in his mercy. Behold him in his word, in 
his works, in his providence, in his saints, in thy soul, 
in his Son ; set him before thine eyes, look upon thy 
(rod, and never leave looking till thou art changed 
into his image and satisfied with his likeness ; and 
when thou art "brought to this,' then he hath done for 
thee what he hath said: "I will give them a heart 
to know me." 




"I WILL give them one heart." Ezek. 11; 19. 
"We read, "Ephraim is like a silly dove, without 
heart," Hos. 7 : 11 ; he hath no heart at all, that is, 
none for his God, as good as none ; and in Psa. 12 : 2, 
we read that Israel had a double heart, a heart and 
a heart more hearts than one ; but says the Lord, I 
will give them a heart, and it shall he hut one, and 
no more. 

Not to dwell on the signification of this text as it 
respects Christians collectively, let us consider it as it 
respects each particular Christian. This " one heart" 
may he taken as opposed to a wavering, a divided, 
and a double heart. 

It is opposed to a wavering, unstable heart. Jas. 
1:6, 8. "Wavering-minded men have almost as many 
hearts as they live days, or meet with cases ; a heart 
that changes with the weather, and tacks about with 
every wind, that resolves and repents, that chooses 
and changes, that, like a wave of the sea, is tossed 
about with every wind. This you may call either 
many 'hearts, or no heart, as you will. But the be- 
liever's one heart is a fixed, established, resolved heart : 
" It is good that the heart be established with grace." 
Heb. 13 : 9. Grace fixes, establishes, and brings to a 


consistency with itself the heart which before was any 
thing or nothing. 

It is opposed to a divided heart, Hos. 10 : 2 ; a 
heart cut in two as it were ; a cloven heart, one half 
for God, the other half for sin ; one half for Christ, the 
other half for this present world ; God having a corner 
in it, and the rest for sin and the devil. This " one 
heart " is an entire heart ; all the powers of it are 
united within itself, and go the same way; God hath 
the whole heart. " Bless the Lord, my soul ; and 
all that is within me, bless his holy name." Psalm 
103 : 1. All its springs are in him, and thither do all 
its streams bend their course. 

It is opposed to a double heart or a hypocritical 
heart, properly so called, Psa. 12 : 2, 3 ; " a heart and 
a heart," a heart in the breast and another in the 
tongue. Our outside is presumed to be an expression 
of our inside ; what we speak, we pretend to be in 
our very hearts. It is the very heart in the tongue 
that speaks, the heart in the eye that weeps, the heart 
in the hand that works, the heart in the foot that 
walks. It is not so with the hypocrite; he shows 
another heart in his tongue, in his ways, than that 
which is within him. He hath a heart, and a heart; 
one in his tongue or life, and quite another in his 
breast. His course speaks him another man 'than he 
is. Thus " one heart " signifies a single or a plain 

To sum up all together, this one heart, is such as 
fixes upon one. end; has but one thing to do; and 
does what it does. 

Heaven Cpiflcd. 6 


I. IT FIXES UPON ONE END. God is its end. There 
it wholly "bestows itself : " I am thine." Psa. 119 : 94. 
And there only it takes up its rest. "And now, 
Lord, what wait I for ? my hope is in thee." Psalm 
39:7. God is "both its work and its wages. To 
please Grod, this is its whole business; and to enjoy 
God, this is its happiness. This is the mark it hath 
in its eye, this is the scope of all its motions, to honor 
and enjoy G-od. This it wills, this it loves, this it 
desires, designs, hopes, labors for, that the Lord may 
possess, and be the possession of it. Particularly, it 
gives God both the place and the power of its chief 

1. The place of its chief end. God is its first and 
last. He is first in the eye, and it looks no farther. 
It makes him not only its chief, but in a sense its 
only aim. It will have no other God, and therefore 
no other end but the Lord. It makes all things else 
not only to stoop and stand by, but to serve him. Get 
you hence, stand off, is its language to all that stands 
up in his room or stands in his way. Evil men, what- 
ever regard they pretend to have for the Lord, do but 
make him a servant to their other gods. Religion they 
will take up, but it is only to serve their own turns, 
to bring about their carnal ends : " They serve not our . 
Lord Jesus Christ, but their own bellies," saith the 
apostle, Eom. 16 : 18 ; Phil. 3 : 19. Nay, they make 
the Lord their fellow-servant ; they serve, and their 
religion must serve their sensual appetites. He that 
will have so much religion only as he may live upon, 
which is the measure of most men, makes the Lord 


no longer his God, "but his servant. A sincere Chris- 
tian will set God upon the throne, and make all things 
else his servants or his footstool. Whatever will not 
'be serviceable must "be trodden in the dust. Nothing 
will be loved and embraced but what will set God 
higher, or bring God nearer to his heart. 

2. The poiver of the end. The end hath a four- 
fold power : it draws ; it directs ; it governs ; and it 

(1.) It draws the heart to it; God, who is a Chris- 
tian's end, is also his beginning. Our first step heaven- 
ward we owe to the influence of heaven upon us : 
" Draw me, we will ran after thee." Sol. Song 1 : 4. 
" No man can come unto me, unless the Father, which 
hath sent me, draw him." Nothing but God willjso 
do it that nothing will draw the soul another way 
The pleasures of sin, the wages of unrighteousness, 
are poor and low baits to entice a soul away from 
God, that is, so far as it is renewed ; so it is nothing 
but God that draws the soul away from these to him, 
and he will do it. God draws the soul not by an act 
of power only, but by the proper attractive influence 
of the end. Not by efficiency only, but by sym- 
pathy ; as by the water the thirsty soul is drawn to 
the water-brooks. 

It is Gotl who draws hearts after him : there are 
instruments, as his word and ministers ; and there 
are arguments by which God draws ; but whatever 
the instruments or arguments are, it is God who does 
it. "What is the wosk of either word or ministers, but 
to set God before men? and this draws. Instruments 


can do nothing, unless G-od be the preacher by them; 
arguments can do nothing unless he be in and with 
them : as it was said concerning the people's follow- 
ing Saul, so much more concerning those who follow 
the Lord, those only follow him "whose hearts God 
hath touched." 1 Samuel, 10 : 26. It is not man's 
touching, but G-od's touching the heart, that draws it 
heavenward. The tongue of man may touch the ear, 
it is G-od only that touches the heart. And when he 
touches, then the heart will follow ; as you know the 
needle when it is touched with a loadstone, then turns 
after it. The loadstone is not more naturally attract- 
ive of the needle, than God is of that heart which he 
hath touched. " My beloved put in his hand by the 
hole of the door, and my bowels were moved in me." 
Sol. Song 5 : 4. He did but touch the door, and her 
heart felt him and moved towards him. 

Christians, when you have been waiting upon 
God in prayer, hearing the gospel, or any other spir- 
itual duty or ordinance, consider, "Hath my heart 
been touched this day ? My tongue has been touched, 
mine ear has been touched, my heart has been treated 
with ; but has the Lord touched it ? Has there virtue 
come forth from him, which has enticed and drawn 
my soul after him ?" Sometimes by a message or 
visit from heaven, the Lord has drawn a good word 
from the lip, a tear from the eye ; but 0, for touches 
upon souls, for the flowing out of hearts after the 
Lord, he is the only loadstone that prevails on gra- 
cious souls. 

Others who have many hearts, have many at- 



traotives ; every heart has its peculiar god ; twenty 
gods, it may be, in one man, because so many hearts. 
Their pleasures are their gods, their profits their gods, 
their belly their god; their .wives or their children 
their gods ; and so many gods, so many ends. And 
every end is a loadstone to draw them after it. Every 
heart will go after its god. A Christian that has but 
one heart, has but one (rod, and this is he that draws 
it on its way. Thou sayest the Lord is thy God, thou 
acknowledgest, thou ownest, thou hast chosen him for 
thine ; but what does thy Gfod, whom thou hast cho- 
sen, do upon thy heart? "What will the sight of God, 
or thy love to God, or thy hope in God, do upon thee ? 
How far will it carry thee ? Which way runs thy heart ? 
"Which way dost thou bend thy course ? Dost thou feel 
thy God drawing thee, and is thy heart running after 
him ? Running denotes motion, and a swift or violent 

The Scripture uses clivers expressions to note the 
running of those hearts after God whom he has 

The desiring of the soul after God. "The desire 
of our soul is to thy name. With my soul have I 
desired thee in the night ; yea, with my spirit within 
me will I seek thee early." Isa. 26 : 8, 9. Desire is 
the soul in motion God- wards. Towards him are their 
desires, and they come from the bottom of the heart, 
"With my soul have I desired thee, with my spirit 
within me will I seek thee." "Lord, all my desire is 
before thee." Psalm 38 : 9. It is not, all my desires, 
but "my desire ;" thou seest all, and it is all but one 


desire. He desires pardon, he desires peace, lie de- 
sires help, and the healing of his wounds ; but all this 
is but one desire. God is all. "One thing have I 
desired." Psalm 27 : 4. 

The thirsting of the soul. "My soul thirsteth 
for God, for the living God." Psalm 42 : 2. Thirst- 
ing is the extremity of desire ; hunger and thirst are 
the appetite of desire heightened violent and painful 
appetites : my soul thirsteth, and is in pain till it be 

The longing of the soul. "0 God, thou art my 
God ; early will I seek thee : my flesh longeth for thee 
in a dry and thirsty land, where no water is." Psalm 
63 : 1. Longing causeth languishing and pain,- if it 
be not satisfied. "My soul breaketh for the longing 
that it hath unto thy judgments." Psalm 119 : 20. 
' ' My heart panteth, my strength faileth ; as for the li ght 
of mine eyes, it also is gone from me." Psa. 38 : 10. 

Calling after God. "Hear me when I call, 
God of my righteousness." Psa. 4 : 1. Calling upon 
God, is the voice of desire. The desiring soul will 
not keep silence ; the tongue, the eyes, the ears, the 
hands, the knees, must all be orators, when the flame 
is once kindled within. 

Crying after the Lord. This is an expression 
answering the thirsting of the soul. Crying is a pas- 
sionate and importunate praying. "I cried with my 
whole heart; hear me, Lord." Psalm 119 : 145. 

Crying out after God. This is the manner of the 
longing soul. Crying out denotes more than bare 
crying loud cries, strong cries, forced out by a par- 


oxysm of love, or an agony the soul is in : " My soul 
longeth, yea, even fainteth for the courts of the Lord ; 
my heart and my flesh crieth out for the living G-od." 
Psalm 84 : 2. 

Following hard after the Lord. "My soul fol- 
loweth hard after thee." Psalm 63 : 8. This expres- 
sion is more comprehensive ; it denotes both all the 
workings and breakings and breathings of the soul 
within, and its diligent use of all outward means, and 
pressing on after the Lord; all those laborings and 
watohings and runnings, all that holy violence, where- 
with a saint presses into the kingdom of God. 

Put all this together, and you will see the power 
and influence the Lord hath on holy souls, to draw 
them after Mm ; they are in motion heavenward, de- 
siring, thirsting, longing, calling, crying, crying out, 
following hard after him. "What aileth these souls ; 
what is the matter with them : what would they have ? 
"What aileth thee?" said the Danites once to Micah, 
"that thou comest thus after us ?" "What aileth thee ? 
"Why, you have taken away my gods, and " what have 
I more?" Judges 18 : 23. "What aileth these crying, 
longing, running souls? Why, it is after their God 
they cry, it is after their God they run. Go back, 
Elisha, said once the prophet to him, when he had 
cast Ms mantle on him: "Go back again; for what 
have I done to thee?" 1 Kings, 19 : 20. "What hast 
thou done ? Enough to hold me from going back. 
There went virtue with the mantle ; the mantle fell 
on his heart as well as his back, and drew it after the 
prophet. Should you say thus to the believer, Gro 


back, soul, go back from following thy (roil; for what 
hath he done unto thee? 0, he hath gotten my 
heart, he replies ; no, no, I cannot go back, he is my 
God, and what have I more ? 

(2.) The end guides and directs to means. ""Whith- 
er shall I go from thee ? thou hast the words of eter- 
nal life." 

(3.) The end governs. I shall put both these to- 
gether. What is it that governs sinners but their ulti- 
mate end ? this points them out their work, and their 
way ; this holds them to their work, and keeps them in 
their way : whatever fetters and chains their lusts are 
to them, it is their carnal ends to which they are in 
bondage. These are they that lord it over them, and 
therefore it is impossible to persuade a sinner to make 
a thorough change of his way, till he hath changed 
his ends. Herein consists the conversion of a sinner, 
in the changing of his ends. When he ceases to be 
any longer to himself, to his flesh, to the world, and 
for a worldly happiness, and is brought about to fix 
upon God as his portion and happiness, to whom he 
devotes and dedicates himself, there is conversion. 
Sin is our turning away, and conversion is turning 
back to our God. Beloved, consider not barely how, 
but to what you live; not only what you do, but 
what you would have ; and never count yourselves 
truly godly, whatever of God be in your way, till God 
be in your heart and eye. He that has first chosen 
God, and therefore a godly life, whose godliness of life 
springs forth as the fruit of his choice of the Lord, 
that is a godly man. 


God governs as our king, and as our end ; as our 
king, by his sovereignty ; as our end, by his excellence, 
worthiness, and goodness: as our king, "by laws.; as 
our end, by love. Love will find out our way, will 
tell all our wanderings, . will check us for our sins, 
sweeten our labors, -quicken us on our course, cut our 
way through dangers and difficulties, and keep us in 
our way till we come to the fruition of our end. 
Therefore it is said by the apostle, "The law is not 
made for a righteous man." 1 Tim. 1 : 9. Love will 
save the law a labor. "The law is not made for a 
righteous man ;" not so much, at least, as for sinners ; 
not as to the coercion of it, though still as to its obli- 
gation : the constraint of love will much supersede the 
coercion of laws. 

(4.) The end rewards. " They have their reward," 
Matt. 6; that 'is, they have their end. The reputa-- 
tion of being devout and charitable men was the end 
of their devotion and charity : they prayed, and fasted, 
and gave alms for no other end ; and the obtaining 
that reputation was their reward. "Verily I say unto 
you, They have their reward." 

Grod is the reward of his saints : " I am thy ex- 
ceeding great reward." G-en. 15 : 1. " My judgment 
is with the Lord, and my reward with my God." Isa. 
49 ; 4. God is the reward they shall receive, and the 
reward they look to receive. Moses "had respect unto 
the recompense of the reward." Heb. 11 : 26. 

And therefore the argument was weighty which 
Christ used to dissuade his disciples from being in 
their devotions and alms-deeds as the Pharisees and 



hypocrites were, who disfigured their countenances in 
their fasts, and sounded a trumpet to proclaim their 
alms : " Be ye not like them, for they have their 
reward." The argument was strong to the disciples, 
who being men of another spirit, could not he satis- 
fied with such a reward. 

In these two things saints greatly differ from the 
men of this world. They are not willing to defer 
their duties till hereafter ; and they dread to have 
their reward here : they would dispatch their work, 
and are willing to go upon trust for their wages. Sin- 
ners would have their wages in hand, and he trusted 
for t their Work till hereafter ; they would be happy 
here, and can he content to stay for holiness till here- 
after : " It is soon enough to he saints in heaven." 
But Oh, it would be a dreadful word to saints, 
" Here are thy good things, take them', these are thy 
reward." These are not their end, and therefore they 
cannot take them for their reward. 

Poor foolish worldlings, how are you disjointed ; 
how are your weary hearts scattered through the 
ends of the earth ; how many masters do you serve ; 
how many matters have you to mind: you weary 
yourselves in the greatness of your way, and what 
is your reward? What the fields can give, you 
have ; what your sheep or your oxen can give, you 
have ; what your beds, or your tables, or your 
houses, or your clothes can give, you have ; here a 
little and there a little : your beds give you ease, 
your houses shelter, your sports and companions 
pleasure, your parasites honor, and the little you can 


pick up here and there, this is your reward. Yerily 
I say unto you, you have your reward : unhappy souls, 
you are troubled and careful about many things for 
nothing ; one thing is needful ; and if yet ye will he 
wise, choose that good part which shall not he taken 
from you. 

II. This one heart hath BUT ONE THING TO DO. " This 
one thing I do." Phil. 3:13. There are all things 
in that one thing; all things needful. How many 
things soever his hand findeth to do, all is but one. 
He intends in all, Q-od. A renewed heart designs 
God, and is making God- wards in all he does. What- 
ever journey he goes, God is his home ; whatever 
race he runs, God is his mark and prize ; whatever 
battle he fights against flesh and blood, against prin- 
cipalities and powers, it is that he may cut his way 
through all to his God : whatever he does, he does for 
God ; whatever he suffers, he suffers for God. When, 
he hears, or fasts, or prays, it is all for God. When 
ye fasted, did ye at all fast to me ? " Yes, to thee," 
a Christian is able to say: he hath many things to 
pray for and fast for ; he hath bread, and clothes, and 
friends, and health, and safety, and liberty to pray for ; 
but in all, he prays for God : he entitles God to all 
he has and marks it for him, and he sees and enjoys 
God in all he has. He will not own that for a mercy 
which has not God in it, and which is not a foot or wing 
to carry him on towards him. And therefore what- 
ever he begs for himself, it is that he may have it for 
God. What he gives, he gives to God ; whom he for- 
gives, it is for the Lord's sake j whether he eats, or 


drinks, or works, or buys, or sells, or whatever else lie 
does, lie does it all to the glory of Grod. 1 Cor. 10 : 31. 
For him he prays, for him he waits, for him he labors, 
for him he suffers, for him he lives, to him he dies. 
" To me to live is Christ." Phil. 1 : 21. " According 
to my earnest expectation and my hope, that in noth- 
ing I shall he ashamed, but that with all boldness, as 
always, so now also Christ may be magnified in my 
body, whether it be by life or by death." This is the 
one thing he intends, this is the one thing he seeks in 
all, take his whole course together ; he can say with the 
apostle, " This one thing I do, forgetting those things 
which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things 
which are before, I press towards the mark for the 
prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus." 

III. This one heart DOES WHAT IT DOES ; and that 
not feignedly, but really not faintly, but heartily. 

1. Really, It pursues this end in a plain and 
honest way. He that has this one heart, has but 
one way. Heart and life go hand in hand ; he makes 
straight steps for his heart, and his heart makes 
straight steps for his feet. As he looks straight on, so 
he walks straight on to his mark. He does not look 
one way and row another. He is like Jacob, a plain 
man, a plain-dealing man ; a jNathauael, in whom is 
no guile ; he turns his inside outward ; his life is not 
a cloak, but a commentary on his heart, the expositor 
of his inward man. His end is in Ms heart, and his 
heart is in his face, in his tongue, in his duties, and 
all his ways. He is no politic dealer in fleshly wis- 
dom, 2 Cor. 1 : 12 ; his religion is not a blind or a 


device to delude the simple ; he is downright and in 
earnest in all he does. He does the same thing he 
seems to do ; his praying is praying indeed ; his fast- 
ing and alms are such indeed ; his very profession is 
practice ; he would not believe, nor make others be- 
lieve, but that he is what he is. He seeks not com- 
mendation from men, but approbation with (rod. His 
design is not inordinately to commend himself to the 
good opinion of others, though he would be made 
manifest in their consciences. He would not be a lie 
or a cheat. He abhors all lying, but most of all a 
religious lie. He would not lie for God, much less 
against him ; such a lie is as blasphemy to him. He 
loves not images ; he would have a soul in all his prac- 
tices. A prayer without a soul, a sacrifice without a 
heart, a religious carcass, is an abomination to him, 
He would not make such a noble medium as religion 
serve so base an end as the serving of the flesh. 

He has other work to do than to serve times OT 
tables, to please himself or men, to serve wills, or hu- 
mors, or lusts ; he has a soul, a conscience, a God to 
look after ; he has but one business to do, but one Mas- 
ter to serve. If he be a magistrate, he rules for God ; 
if he be a minister, he preaches for God ; if he be a 
parent, he educates for God ; if he be a master, he 
governs for God ; to him he dedicates himself and his 
house ; he writes on his doors, This is Bethel, this is 
none other but the house of God. If he be a child or 
a servant, he obeys in the Lord and for the Lord. He 
knows he has to do with God in all he does : when he 
is dealing with men, with his friends, with his family, 


in his calling, in his recreations, in all his doings, he 
has to do with God ; and he can take comfort in noth- 
ing hut what G-od will take pleasure in. u Thou hast 
no pleasure in iniquity. Thou lovest truth in the 
inward parts." And there is no truth in the inward 
parts, but when there is truth also in the outward 
parts, when the heart and tongue and ways agree. 
It is in vain to say, " My heart is good," when the 
ways are evil. A false tongue, deceitful ways, will 
give the lie to the heart. He cannot subsist longer 
than he hath smiles from heaven. Communion with 
God is his life, his all is in God. His heart dies when 
that fountain is stopped. If he cannot have clearness 
and boldness in the presence of G-od, he can no longer 
look himself in the face, but blushes and hangs his 
head with shame. He values neither the applause 
nor the scorn of men, so that he may have a wit- 
ness of his acceptance with God. Lord, dost thou 
regard, wilt thou accept of me ? It is enough. Let 
all the world call me, " Thou fool, thou Pharisee, 
thou hypocrite," if the Lord will say, "My child," it 
is well. "It is falsely spoken, it is foolishly, it is 
weakly done ; it is pride, it is singularity, it is scrupu- 
losity:" thus the world cry. Let them alone, my 
soul, I will hearken what the Lord God, what con- 
science will say: if he says, " Thou hast been faith- 
ful," if conscience says, "Well done," let all else say 
what they please ; this is my rejoicing, my only rejoic- 
ing, the testimony of my conscience that in simplicity 
and godly sincerity, not in fleshly wisdom, but by the 
grace of God, I had my conversation hi the world. 


2. Heartily. Whatever he does for Gfod, he does 
it with a good will. He hath cast all his business 
into one, and he is intent upon it. He works right- 
eousness, as sinners work wickedness, "with both 
hands earnestly." Micah 7:3. He is religious in 
good earnest, he prays in good earnest, he hears in 
good earnest, he runs in good earnest : the powers of 
his soul being all united in one channel, run more 
strongly; his many springs falling all into one stream, 
make a river, that bears clown all before it. The 
psalmist prays, " Unite my heart to fear thy name." 
Psa. 86 : 11. Unite my heart to thee, and unite my 
heart in itself, that it may all run towards thee. Unite 
my heart to fear, and s# unite my heart to love thy 
name ; unite my heart to serve and follow and live to 
thee. As if he had said, " my (rod, my heart is 
divided and discomposed, scattered up and down I 
know not where ; my pleasures have a part, my estate 
has a part, my. friends have a part, my family has a 
part, there is little or none left for Grod. I have too 
many tilings to fear, too many things to love and care 
for, too many things to serve and follow, to follow the 
Lord with any strength or intention of mind. Call in 
all, Lord, all my parts, all my powers ; command their 
joint and united attendance upon thee." " Gird up 
the loins of your mind, be sober, and hope to the end," 
in the original, hope perfectly, a for the grace that 
is to be brought unto you at the revelation of Jesus 
Christ : as obedient children, not fashioning your- 
selves according to the former lusts in your ignorance ; 
but as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy 


in all manner of conversation." 1 Peter, 1 : 13-15. 
Gird up the loins of your minds. Gird and "be sober, 
gird and hope perfectly, gird and be obedient, gird and 
be holy. Here it is true, ungirt and unblest, ungirt 
and unholy ; the girding is the gathering in the 
strength of the heart to its work. " Stand, therefore, 
having your loins girt." Eph. 6 : 14. Stand, do not 
gird and ungird, stand always girt ; call in your 
hearts and hold them in; be always in a readiness 
to every duty, in a readiness against every tempta- 

Oh, how loose are we. "What loose praying, and 
loose hearing, and loose meditation, and -loose walk- 
ings do \ve satisfy ourselves %yith. Our hearts are to 
seek, our thoughts and affections are gadding abroad, 
we know not where to find them, and our work is not 
done. "We excuse our non-proficiency in religion by 
our many hinderances, by the difficulties of our work ; 
but the great hinderance lies here, our loins are un- 
girded, our hearts are not united in our work nor in- 
tent upon it. "When God and the things of eternity 
get so deep into the heart ; when there is such a deep 
sense of the weight and importance of the things that 
are eternal abiding upon us, as overpowers carnal 
objects and loosens the heart from them ; when we 
feel the evidence and the consequence of these things 
commanding our whole souls after them, then there is 
religion in earnest ; then we go on and prosper. And 
thus it is with this " one heart ;" there are not some 
light touches only upon it, God is deep in it, eternity 
is deep in it. This is all, it says, this is all I have to 

ONE HEART. . 107 

mind or do. My hope, my comforts, my life, my soul, 
all hang upon this one thing ; - if I speed well here, I 
am made for ever. What have I to do in the way of 
Egypt, or to drink of the waters of Sihor ; what have 
I to do in the way of Assyria ; what have I to do in the 
way of pleasure ; what have I to do in the way of the 
world ? To build tabernacles for myself here below, or 
to drink the waters of my broken cisterns ? How little 
am I concerned in the interest of this flesh. "What mat- 
ters it what becomes of it, or which way it goes ? My 
(rod, my Grod, my soul, my soul, there lies my con- 
cern ; of these let my only care be. Gfet thee behind 
me, Satan ; hold thy peace, sinful flesh ; keep silence, 
worldly cares ; hinder me not, speak no more to me 
of hearkening to you, away from me, ye evil-doers, 
I will keep the commandments of my Grod. Let 
others do what they will, run- whither they please, 
choose whom they will serve, what they will follow 
after ; come, my soul, follow thou the Lord, gird up 
thy loins and come away ; for the other world, for the 
other world ; make haste, linger not ; let others loiter 
as they will, escape for thy life, look not behind thee, 
get thee up to the mountain and live. 

OBJECTION. One heart ! why, it is evermore two ; 
two men, a new man and an old ; two nations, two 
selfs ; there are twins in the womb of every saint ; the 
ungodly seem ,more one than they, all for sin and for 
hell ; all dark, all hard, all but one stone. 

ANSWER. Yet it is true, the saints, and they only, 
have this one heart ; for the old heart that cleaves to 
them is not the heart, the old self is not the self; this 


old man is not the man, this is not ho : that is the 
heart which has got the dominion and the rule in the 
man. The new heart has the dominion ; though sin, 
as Esau, he the first-horn, yet the elder must now 
serve the younger ; the old man is but a dead man. 
Col. 3 : 3. " Ye are dead," that is, your old man is 
dead, your sin is slain and crucified with Christ, and 
when it is dead, you may say it exists not. 

The meaning plainly is, I will give them one 
heart ; that is, a single, sincere, upright heart ; they 
shall be no longer a hypocritical people. If there be 
something of hypocrisy in them, yet hypocrites they 
shall no longer be ; their hearts shall be upright be- 
fore me. Sincerity consists in choosing, and giving 
up our hearts to God, as ovir chief good and final end. 
When God is our all, there is perfection ; and when 
Clod is our chief, there is sincerity. I say, when God 
is our all, when the world has nothing left in us to 
entice or draw out our souls after it, but God carries 
them wholly, without any liking or lusting after sin- 
ful objects, there is perfection. This is not attainable 
here ; the heart cannot be thus perfectly one, till cor- 
ruption hath put on incorruption. But though it be 
not perfectly one, it may be sincerely one ; and it is 
so, when, however the flesh has too great an interest 
in it and influence upon it, and often pulls it aside 
and puts it back, yet it still bends its course heaven- 
wards. And the way the stream and strength of the 
soul is running, the flesh will be putting in for a part 
it would have all, it would not take its turns with 
God. God will not take his turns with the flesh; he 


will have all, or none. And the flesh would not take 
its turns with him ; it is not contented with now and 
then, it would not be served in the fields, or in the 
shop, or at the table, or in the bed only, but in the 
church, in the chamber, in the closet ; it would carry 
away all from God : but if it cannot have all, it will 
divide with Gfod; wherever God is served, the flesh 
will be putting in for its share. The best of Chris- 
tians feel too great a truth in this ; their frequent 
humblings, and mournings, and breakings, and self- 
shamings before the Lord, are mostly upon this ac- 
count. This is the voice of their deepest groanings 
and bitterest tears, the burden of their most mournful 
groans : "1 cannot do the things that I would: when 
I would do good, evil is present with me ; with my 
mind I serve the law of Grod, but with my flesh the 
law of sin. "Woe is me, my soul, how am 1 strait- 
ened, how am I divided! Whither am I hurried? 
"Wherewithal do I come before the Lord ? Oh, with 
what halting and heartless and distracted duties do I 
serve my God. This 'flesh' eats up the fat, and the 
best ; and only the lame and the lean and the sick are 
left for a sacrifice to the Lord. Woe is me, my 
leanness, my leanness ! my G-od, my God, how art 
thou served ; how art thou robbed of thy due ! These 
strangers are gotten into thy sanctuary, and eat up 
ail thy pleasant things ; and what have they left for 

Such are their complaints; and their very com- 
plaints are their comfort and the witness of their 
sincerity, while they can with openness of heart make 


their approach and appeal to Grod : " Yet thou. art my 
Lord, thou art my Grod, and I will serve thee. I have 
chosen thee as my heritage for ever, and I will wait 
for thy salvation. Hear the sighing of thy prisoner, 
deliver thy captive : my heart is with thee ; let not 
this flesh entrench upon thy right, let sin no longer 
reign in my mortal hody ; let me have no more to do 
with the throne of iniquity, untie the cords, loose the 
fetters, bring my soul out of prison. Search me, 
Lord, and know my heart; prove me, and know my 
thoughts. Is there any way of wickedness in me? 
Do I willingly go after sin's commandments ? Do I 
regard iniquity in my heart ? Here it lies, it is true ; 
it wars, and raises tumults and insurrections against 
thee ; hut do I resign up myself to it ? Is it a pleas- 
ure to me ? Am I at peace with it ? Lord, thou 
knowest. I cannot get rid of it, I cannot do the things 
that I would, I cannot pray as I would, nor hear as I 
would, nor think, nor speak, nor live as I would: 
whither I go, sin goes with me ; where I lodge, it 
lodges ; if I sit still, it ahides with me ; if I run from 
it, it follows me ; I can neither rest nor work, I can 
do nothing, so sorely does it beset me; and yet, 
blessed be thy name, this one thing I do what I can- 
not attain, I follow after; I cannot conquer, yet I 
fight against it ; I wrestle with it, though it so often 
give me the fall. I trust it not, though it flatter me ; 
I love it not, though it feed me : my heart is with 
thee, Lord, my foot is making after thee ; I groan, I 
travail in pain, waiting for thy redemption : till I die, 
I will not give over. I will die fighting, I will die 


hoping, I will die praying. Save me, Lord ; make 
no long tarrying, my God." 

And thus you have the description of this "one 
heart." It fixes upon one end, and God is that end. 
It gives him the place of the end ; he is its first and 
last. It gives him the power of the end : this one 
thing, the obtaining of Grod to be theirs, draws them 
on, guides, governs them in their whole course, and 
is accepted by them as their only and exceeding great 
reward. This instructs them, this rules and encour- 
ages them, calls them off from sin, calls them on to 
duty, carries them out in suffering ; ah 1 their powers 
are united in this one business, all their arguments 
are resolved into this one argument, all their rewards 
are summed up in this one reward: "Grod shall be 
glorified, and therein my soul shall be satisfied ; God 
shall be mine, and glory shall be his." 

In all this we see what this "one heart" means ; 
but Oh, how little of this grace have we received ! 
How many hearts have we; how many gods have 
we, to divide these hearts between them. How small 
a corner, how low a place, must the Lord take up 
with us, if he will have any at all. How often is he 
made to stand aside, or to stoop to a lust. God made 
to give place to the devil ! Is God our all indeed ? 
Have we none else to please, have we none else to 
serve ? Have we no portion, no' inheritance, no other 
God but the Lord ? Is he our alpha and omega, our 
first and our last, our spring and our ocean, our sum 
and our scope, the rise and the rest of all our motions ? 
Whatever our tongues speak, do our hearts also and 


our lives say, "To me, to live is Christ: none but 
God; none "but Christ, nothing "but heaven and glory?" 
"When we are driving so hard for our flesh, for our 
pride, for our ease, for our gain; when we are so 
"busy this way, and so hearty and so zealous that way ; 
when these must have so great a share in our religion, 
is this still our voice, " To me, to live is Christ?" 0, 
how little power has the Lord with us ! How far is 
it that the single interest of God will carry our souls ? 
How little is done purely for God ! We have often 
many strings to our how. There are some services 
wherein there is something coming to the flesh, as 
well as to the name of God some credit or honor, 
some outward advantage to "be got by religion ; "but 
when all the other strings crack but this one, when 
there is nothing to move us but God, how weak do 
our motions grow. The flesh often goes partner with 
God: there is a double trade driving in the same 
actions a trade for heaven and a trade for earth to- 
gether. There is something to be got by our religion 
besides what is coming to God : there are fields and 
vineyards and olive-yards, friends and honors and 
preferments. Thus it sometimes falls out, when god- 
liness is in the rising side ; and when it is thus, we 
go smoothly and vigorously on: "Come, see the zeal 
that I have for the Lord of hosts." But when the 
interests of God and the flesh divide and part asunder ; 
when the flesh is likely to be a loser by our religion ; 
when God puts us on such duties as will spend upon 
the flesh, and eat out and devour its interest ; when oui 
hearts tell us, as Deborah did Barak, " This shall not 


be for thine honor," Judges 4:9; or this will not be 
for thine ease, or thy safety; then what becomes of 
our zeal? Oh, how heavily do we then drive on-! 
How seldom is it that this word, " Yet God shah 1 be 
glorified," will balance all the prejudices, and confute 
all the cross reasonings of the flesh, and carry us on 
our way without and against it. 

How little has the Lord of the government of us ! 
If he doth govern as a king, yet how little does he as 
our end. How little does goodness govern us ; how 
little can love do with us ! "We must have rigor and 
severity ; we must have spurs, and goads, and rods, 
and stripes, and scorpions too ; and all little enough 
to drive us back from those other gods which we have 
chosen, and to bring us on after the Lord. If the 
law be not made for the righteous, if they need not a 
law, then what are we, for whom the law will not 
suffice ? If commands, threatenings, terrors, penal- 
ties, judgments, can do no more upon us ; if we are 
yet so loose, and so carnal, and so earthly, and so 
froward, and so false, and so formal, under the severest 
discipline ; if we will not be whipped into more hu- 
mility, spirituality, self-denial, watchfulness, care, 
activity, zeal ; but are such drones and such sleepers, 
such earthworms and such sensualists still, under all 
the corrections and compulsions of the law what 
should we be without a law, were there nothing but 
love to restrain us from sin and constrain and quicken 
us to duty ? 

Christians, have we but one thing to do in all we 
do ? Sometimes we are busy in doing nothing. Though 


there be a prayer in our mouths, the praises of Gfod 
in our mouths, Christ, heaven, holiness, glory, a new 
heart, a new life upon our tongues, there is nothing 
within : no prayer, no praise, no Christ, nor heaven. 
What have we been doing in the closet, in the family, 
in the congregation, many times, when we seemed to 
have been praying? Nothing, nothing, but sowing 
wind and good words. Sometimes we have too many 
things in our hearts ; what a world of carnal devices 
and fleshly projects have we wrapt up in the garment 
of our religion ! Peter's sheet had not a more hetero- 
geneous miscellany of creatures, "four-footed beasts, 
wild beasts, creeping things, and fowls of the air," than 
our religious duties have of designs and ends. We 
have men to please ; our pride, our appetites, to offer 
sacrifice to ; we bring our farms and our oxen and 
our trades before the Lord. Are not our hearts, which 
should be the houses of prayer, the houses of mer- 
chandise ? Are we not taking, or pursuing, or in a 
journey, or asleep, or driving bargains? Christians, 
if we were privy to one another's hearts as God is 
privy- to them, what abominations should we see 
brought into the holy places ! What monsters would 
our most sacred services appear, which, while the 
outside only is viewed, are applauded and admired. 
Is this our singleness of heart? for shame and 
blushing and confusion of face. for a veil to 
hide such hearts from the jealous eye of the holy 
G-od : a varnish, a fair outside, hides all from men ; 
but nothing but a dark veil of shame and sorrow and 
tears and repentance a veil dipped in blood, in the 


blood of Christ, will hide them from the eyes of the 

Oh, how little plainness and singleness of heart is 
there in our ordinary course, in our dealings and con- 
versings in the world ! How little faith or truth is 
there in us ! How little trust is to be put in us ! 
What doubling, what deceitful dealing, defrauding, 
overreaching, undermining, are we guilty of! How 
false are we in our promises ; how insignificant are 
our words ; what an uncertain sound do they give ! 
Our yea may often stand for nay, and our nay for 
yea. " They speak vanity every one with his neigh- 
bor ; with flattering lips and with a double heart do 
they speak." Psa. 12 : 2. Trust ye not in a friend, 
put not confidence in a guide. 

Blessed be God, the Lord hath a generation on 
whom this cannot be charged, children that will not 
lie nor deceive. Though Satan and this evil world bind 
up all in a bundle, "They are all naught; they are 
all false, vain boasters, and deceitful workers ; there 
is none upright, no, not one;" yet, thanks be to God., 
Satan is a liar the accuser of the brethren is a false 
accuser. God hath his children that will not lie. 
But woe be to those professors, by reason of whom 
the offence cometh. 

Christians, hath God promised to give you "one 
heart ?" Let it be once said, " Tliis day is the Scrip- 
ture fulfilled." may you be the accomplishment 
of this good word. Hath God promised to give you 
one heart? Do not say, But I 'will not take it; 
two are better than one : I have found so much the 

Heaven Opened. ' 7 


sweet of deceit, that there is no life like it. Hath 
God said, "I will give one heart?" let not any one 
among you say, But I fear he will not. Make not 
the promise of Clod of none effect, either hy your im- 
piety or unbelief. Doth God promise to give this one 
heart ? he that promised it, doth also require it. Be 
thyself, Christian. Let it be said thou art what thou 
art ; be true, be but one, have but one heart, and let 
thy one heart have but one tongue, but one face, and 
but one thing to do. Beware of hypocrisy, beware of 
carnal policy ; make not thy God to serve thy flesh ; 
call not the serving of thy flesh a serving of God, and 
make not thy serving of God to be a serving of the 
flesh. Be not divided between God and the world. 
Oh, how easy would our lives be, did we find our 
whole souls running one way ; taking up with Gocl as 
the adequate object of all our powers, the mark of all 
our motions, and the reward of all our labors ; did all 
our streams empty themselves into this ocean, and all 
our lines meet in this one centre ; did God alone 
draw and allure our hearts, and the sincerity of our 
hearts give motion to all our wheels, guide our eyes, 
govern our tongues, order our steps, animate our 
duties, direct and quicken us in all our goings. Oh, 
how sweet, Oh, how beautiful, were such a life ! in 
sympathy between our hearts and our end, there is 
sweetness ; in the harmony of our hearts and ways, 
there is beauty. Oh, how sweet are the drawings of 
love. The free and full closing of our spirits with God, 
dissolving themselves into his will, acquiescing and 
resting satisfied in his goodness, is a sweetness which 


no man knows but lie who tastes it ; the harmony of 
the powers of the soul within itself, of its motions 
and actions in the life, has a beauty which will eclipse 
the glory of the world. Christian, be it thus with 
thee, and thou hast the blessing that covenant bless- 
ing which the Lord has promised, in saying, "I will 
give them one heart." 




" I WILL take away the stony heart out of, your 
flesh, and I will give you a heart of flesh." Ezek. 
36 : 26. The old heart is a stone, cold as a stone, 
dead as a stone, hard as a stone ; hut I will take 
away the stone, and. give a heart of flesh. 

A heart of flesh is a soft and tender heart ; flesh 
can feel ; any tiling that is contrary to it puts it to 
pain. Sin makes it smart ; it cannot kick hut it is 
against the pricks; by its rebellion and resistance 
against the Lord, it receives a wound ; it cannot hit 
but it hurts itself. A soft hand gets nothing by strik- 
ing a hedge of thorns. A soft heart, when it hath 
been meddling with sin, is sure to smart for it. It 
can neither escape the pain, nor yet endure it ; and 
what it cannot bear, it will take warning to avoid. 

Flesh will bleed. A soft heart will mourn and 
melt and grieve when hard hearts are moved at noth- 
ing. Flesh will yield. It is apt to receive impres- 
sions. The power of G-od will awe it; his justice 
alarm it ; his mercy melt it ; his holiness humble it, 
and leave his stamp and image upon it. And as the 
attributes, so the word and works of God will make 
sign upon it. Who sets a seal upon a stone ; or what 
print will it receive ? upon the wax, the print will 


abide. God speaks once and twice, but man, hard- 
ened man will not regard it. Neither his word nor 
his rod, neither his speaking nor Ms smiting will make 
any impression on such hearts. It is the heart of flesh 
that hears and yields. And with such hearts the Lord 
delights to he dealing. " The heart of this people is 
waxed gross," Acts 28:27] they will not hear, they 
will not understand ; and the next word is, Away to 
the Gentiles, they will hear. He will no more write 
his law on tables of stone : he will write in flesh ; 
there the impression will take, and go the deeper; 
and therefore, wherever he intends to write, he pre- 
pares his tablet makes this stone flesh, and then 
engraves upon it. Particularly this tenderness admits 
of a double distinction. 

I. Respecting THE OBJECT of it. There is a ten- 
derness as to sin, duty, and suffering. 

1. As to sin. And this discovers itself both before 
the commission, and after the commission of it. 

Before the commission. While it is under a temp- 
tation, or feels the first impulse to sin. A tender heart 
startles, starts back at the sight of a sin, as at the sight 
of a devil: " How can I do this great wickedness, and 
sin against God ?" Genesis 89 : 9. This manner of 
speech presents Joseph as a man in a fright, startled 
at the ugliness of the sin. So David when he had an 
opportunity and a temptation to slay Saul, rejects it 
with a " God forbid." The Lord forbid that I should 
stretch forth my hand against the Lord's anointed." 
1 Sam. 26 : 11. And the tender conscience not. only 
shrinks at the higher and greater sins, but it resists 


the little ones, the smallest of sins. Is it not a little 
one ? is no plea with it. Little or great, it is a sin, 
and that is enough. 

There is also a tenderness as to sin after its com- 
mission ; if it has been brought on by an act of sin, 
yet it cannot cease with it. The skirt of Saul's gar- 
ment was too heavy for David's heart to bear. His 
heart smote him at once. 1 Sam. 24 : 5. Sin in the 
review looks dreadful. Its pleasant flowers quickly 
turn to thorns ; it pricks the heart, how much soever 
it pleased the eye. It ordinarily enters by the eye, 
and often runs out the same way it came in runs 
out in tears. " When he thought thereon, he wept." 
At least, it warns one and makes him more watchful 
afterwards. Thou seest what it is, take heed ; take 
it for a warning, and do so no more. The pain of sin, 
if it do not force a tear, will set a watch. 

2. As to duty. A tender heart will neither slight a 
sin, nor neglect a duty. It is loath to grieve and offend, 
and careful to serve and please the Lord. It would 
not that he should suffer by it, nor so much as lose 
his due. It watches against sin, and unto duty. It 
cares how to please the Lord, and its care is tender. 
It would not displease by its neglects or performances ; 
all must be done that ought, and as it ought to be 
done. It will neither withhold its offering, nor will it 
offer an unclean thing. It considers not only what; 
but how. Both matter and manner, substance and 
circumstance, all must be right, or it is not at ease. 
It is not satisfied that it prays sometimes ; it would 
never lose a praying time. God will not, and it can- 


not lose a duty. It would neither lose by non-per- 
formance, nor lose what is performed. It would 
neither leave undone, nor do amiss ; any failing, not 
only in the matter, hut in the principle, end, affec- 
tion, tender affection any failing pains it. 

There is a tenderness in point of suffering. A 
tender heart will not he careful what or how much, 
but why and upon what account he suffers ; will 
neither sinfully shun the cross, nor run upon it unwar- 
rantably. He waits for a call, and then follows. He 
is patient under the hand of the Lord, but not insen- 
sible ; can be touched with an affliction, though not 
offended at it : " The hand of the Lord hath touched 
me." He suffers more than his own sufferings. His 
brethrens' burdens all lie on his shoulders. He weeps 
in their sorrows, bleeds in their wounds, his heart is 
bound in their chains. As the care, so the trouble of 
all the churches comes daily upon him : " Who is weak, 
and I am not weak; who is offended, and I burn not?" 
he espouses all the sufferings of Christ as his own. In 
all His afflictions, he is afflicted. 

II. Tenderness may be distinguished in respect to 
THE SUBJECT of it. There is a tenderness of the con- 
science, the will, the affections. 

1. Tenderness of conscience consists in these three 
things: clearness of judgment, quickness of sight, and 
uprightness or faithfulness. 

Clearness of judgment, when it is well instructed, 
and understands the rule, and can thence discern be- 
tween good and evil. Heb. 5 : 14. There is a ten- 
derness that proceeds from cloudiness ; a scrupulosity 


that fears every thing, stumbles at straws, starts at 
shadows; makes sins; picks quarrels at duties; and 
so sometimes dares not please God, for fear of offend- 
ing him. This is 'the sickness or soreness of con- 
science, not its soundness. It is the sound conscience 
that is truly tender. 

Such a conscience has quickness of sight and 
watchfulness. "I sleep, hut my heart waketh." It 
can espy the least sins and smallest duties. It can 
see sin in the very temptation ; it can discover the 
least sin under the fairest face, and the least duty 
under the foulest mask. Call it singularity, nicety, 
cloud it with reproaches, yet conscience can discover 
light shining through all the clouds ; and sees duty 
within, with whatsoever unhandsome face it he pre- 
sented. Clearness of judgment consists in conscience's 
understanding the rule ; quickness of sight in apply- ... 
ing the rule to cases and distinguishing them. The 
truly tender hath his eyes in his head, and his eyes 
open to discover and discern all that comes, be it good 
or evil, little or great. If but a thought comes in, 
"What comes there ? says conscience ; what art thou, 
a friend or an enemy ? whence art thou ; from God 
or from beneath ? It will examine whatever knocks, 
before any free admission. 0, what a crowd of evils 
do thrust themselves into loose and careless hearts ; 
the devil comes in in the crowd, and is never dis- 
covered. If the eye be either dim or asleep, there is 
entrance for any thing. Little do we think ofttimes 
who hath been with us, and what losses and mis- 
chiefs we have sustained while our hearts have been 


asleep, which, had they been wakeful and watchful, 
might have been prevented. 

A tender conscience is also marked by upright' 
ness and faithfulness , which discovers itself, 

In giving charge concerning duty. Look to it, 
soul, there is a duty before thee which Grod calls thee 
to; do not say, It is no great hurt to let it alone, it is 
no great hurt to do it, it is questionable whether it be 
a duty or -not; many wiser than I think otherwise. 
Do not say, It is a nicety, it is but a punctilio, it is 
mere folly and preciseness, and there will be no end 
of standing upon such small matters. See to it, it is 
thy .duty, beware thou neglect it not ; the balking of 
the least duty is the neglecting of the great God of 

In giving warning of sin. Take heed to thy- 
,self, sin lies at the door, thou art under a tempta- 
tion, the devil is entering upon thee. Do not say, 
It is but a little sin : little as it is, there is death and 
hell in it ; look to it, it is sin, have thou nothing to do 
with it, keep thyself pure, and though it run upon 
thee, shake it off. 

After the commission of sin, it gives a rebuke for 
it; reproving, judging, and lashing the soul for it. 
"Where hast thou been, Grehazi? say not thou hast 
been nowhere. Went not this heart with thee, and 
saw thee running after thy covetousness, gadding 
after thy pleasures, feeding thy pride, dandling thy 
lusts, playing the hypocrite, playing the harlot from 
thy G-od, pampering thy flesh, pleasing thine appe- 
tite ? and where hast thou been ? What hast thou 


done, soul ? think not to excuse or mince the matter, 
it cannot be excused; thou hast sinned against thy 
Grod, and now bear thy shame." This is our heart 
smiting us, 2 Sam. 24 : 10 ; our heart condemning us : 
" If our heart condemn us, God is greater than our 
heart, and knoweth all things." 1 John, 3 : 20. 

2. Tenderness of the will consists in its flexible- 
ness and pliableness to the will of God. And this is 
that tenderness wherein chiefly lies the blessing of a 
soft heart : a hard heart is stubborn and obstinate. 
Thy neck is as an iron sinew, and thy brow brass. 
Thou wilt not be ruled, there is no bending thee or 
turning thee out of thy course, thine iron is too hard . 
for the fire, it will not be melted ; and for the ham- 
mer, it will not be broken ; there is no dealing with 
thee, thou art an untractable piece, thou wilt neither 
be led nor driven ; thy heart is set in thee to do evil, 
thy will is set upon sin, and thou. art set upon thine 
own will. Thou sayest, " The word that thou hast 
spoken unto us in the name of the Lord, we will not 
do ; but we will do whatsoever thing goeth forth out of 
our own mouth." Jer. 44 : 16, 17. " Who is lord over 
us ?" Psa. 12 : 4 ; Jer. 2 : 25. Thou sayest, " There 
is no hope ; no, for I have loved strangers, and after 
them I will go, come what will of it, say what thou 
wilt against it ; be silent, Scriptures ; hold thy peace, 
conscience ; it is to no purpose to speak more, there 
is no hope of prevailing; we are resolved, we will 
take our own course." These are hard hearts, stub- 
born, obstinate hearts. 

"When the iron sinew is broken, when the rebellion 


and stubbornness of 'the' spirit is subdued and tamed, 
and made gentle and pliable, then it becomes a ten- 
der heart. 

There may be some tenderness in the conscience, 
.and yet the will be a very stone ; and as long as the 
will stands out, there is no broken heart. Conscience 
may be scared and frighted. Conscience may fly 
upon the sinner with, " What dost thou mean, soul ; 
whither are thy rebellions carrying thee ? look to thy- 
self, hearken, or thou wilt be lost ere thou art aware." 
But however Gf-od has conscience on his side, yet the 
devil still rides the will ; and there sin takes up its 
rest. There is a twofold resting of sin in the soul : 
in peace and in power. 

In peace: when it dwells and rules in the soul 
wittout disturbance or contradiction ; when it carries 
all smoothly before it. "When God lets it alone, and 
conscience speaks not a word against it ; when not- 
withstanding those armies of lusts fighting against 
the soul, there is not so much as one weapon lifted up' 
against them ; not a prayer, not a tear, nor a wish 
for freedom, nor the least fear concerning the issue : 
this is the most dreadful hardness. 

In potver : when, though it can have no peace, 
yet it hath still a place in the heart. Though it can 
have no quiet, but conscience is - ever quarrelling with 
it and warning it away, yet -it still holds its power 
over the will ; the master of the house is content to 
be its servant. Oh, how many persons are there, 
even among the professors of religion, who carinot sin 
in quiet : they are proud, or passionate, or intemper- 


ate, or covetous, or false in "-their words and dealings; 
they are formal and hypocritical, and slight in their 
duties, but they cannot go on thus with any quiet. 
Conscience smites them for it, they feel many a pang 
and deadly twinge in their heart, insomuch that some- 
times they cry and groan and roar in their spirits, 
for redemption, for deliverance from this false, 
this proud, this covetous and wicked heart. And 
yet, after all this the will remains a captive still, sin 
holds its power there, though it cannot reign in peace; 
though it cannot he proud, or play the hypocrite, or 
he covetous, or an oppressor, without some galls and 
gripes in the soul, yet on it goes, the same trade is 
kept up, the same course is held on. God com- 
mands, "Cast yo out, cast ye out, come off from all 
your wickedness and evil ways, and I will receive 
you." But no, though conscience would, the will 
cannot come ; whatever rendings and tearings, what- 
ever terrors and torments and worry ings such souls 
are at any time under ; whatever stings and plagues 
and fires they find their sins to he in their souls and 
"bones ; whatever wishings they wring forth that they 
were well rid of these plagues, while the will is still 
wrong there is a hard heart, desperately bard; there 
is none of this heart of flesh. But when the will is 
once broken loose from sin, when it will be content to 
let all go, and give up itself to the dominion of the 
Lord, there is a broken heart. "Now speak, Lord, 
and I will hear. Now call, Lord, and I will answer. 
Now command me, impose on me what thou wilt, I 
will submit. None but the Lord, none but Christ, 


no other Lord nor lover. I am thine. Lord, thine 
own; do with thine own, demand of thine own, what- 
ever thou pleasest. What G-od will have me he, what 
God will have me do, that will I do and be. No 
longer what I will, but the will of the Lord he done." 
When it is come to this, there is a tender heart, there 
is the blessing of a broken spirit ; the stone he has 
taken away, he has given a heart of flesh. 

Christians, never trust to tears, never talk of ter- 
rors, of trouble of conscience, of the passionate work- 
ings and meltings which at any time you feel within 
your spirits : though there be something in these, as you 
shall see more by and by, yet these are not the things 
you are to look at. A subdued, tractable, willing, 
obedient heart, that is the tender heart. "If ye be 
willing and obedient, ye shall eat the good of the land ; 
but if ye refuse and rebel, ye shall be devoured with 
the sword; for the mouth of the Lord hath spoken it." 
Isa. 1 : 19. 

3. Tenderness of the affections. Of these I shall 
instance only three love, fear, sorrow. 

(1.) The tenderness of love is seen in its benevo- 
lence and in its jealousy. 

In its benevolence. Our goodness extends not to 
the Lord, but our good- will does. Our love can add 
nothing to him : " Can a man be profitable unto God ?" 
Job 22:2. "If thou be righteous, what givest thou 
to him ?" Job 35 : 7. Yet though it can add noth- 
ing, it "would not that any thing be detracted from 
him ; while he can have no more, it would that he 
should have his own, all that is due, his due praise, 


his due honor and homage and worship and subjec- 
tion, from every creature; it would have no abate- 
ment, not the least spot or stain upon all his glory. 
What is an affront to God, is an offence to love. " Love 
Leareth all things," saith the apostle, 1 Cor. 13 : 7 
all things from God, all things from men. And yet 
there are two things which love to God cannot bear 
his dishonor and his displeasure. 

The benevolent heart cannot bear God's dishonor. 
Love would have God to be God, to live in the glory 
of his majesty, in the hearts and eyes of all the world. 
His reproach is grievous to him that loves, for this is 
the cloud that takes God out of sight. He loves and 
honors, and would that God should be loved and hon- 
ored of all ; he fears, and would that the whole world, 
should fear him. He would receive in his own breast 
every arrow that is shot against his Maker ; he would 
that his own name and soul might stand between his 
God and all reproach and dishonor. He would be 
vile, if so the Lord may be glorious : that God may 
increase, he is content to decrease. He is not so ten- 
der of his own heart and life, as of the holiness of his 
God. He would suffer and die, and be nothing, rather 
than that God should not be all in all. He would 
rather never think, nor speak, nor be, than not be, in 
word and thought and life, holiness to the Lord. But 
what or where would he not be, rather than his own 
hand should be lifted up against Jehovah ! 

To see the Lord robbed of his holiness, wronged in 
his wisdom, or his truth, or his sovereignty ; to see sin, 
to see the world, set up in the throne, and the God of 


glory made to stand aside as insignificant; to hear that 
blasphemy, "G-od is not worth this lust, or not wor- 
thy this labor" and what less is said in every sin? 
is a sword in his breast. "The reproaches of them 
that reproached thee are fallen upon me." Love has 
tasted of God, it has fed on his fulness, it has its 
nourishment from his sweetness, it has been warmed 
in his bosom, all his goodness has passed before it ; 
upon this it lives and feeds; and having found and 
felt what the Lord is, it is impatient that his good- 
ness should be clouded or belied. Love kindled from 
heaven is keen, and the keen edge is a tender edge 
the least touch of what offends will turn it. "I am 
in distress, my bowels are troubled, my heart is turned 
within me, for I have grievously rebelled." Lam. 
1 : 20. " My tears have been my meat day and night, 
while they continually say unto me, "Where is thy 
G-od?" Psa. 42:3. Where is that care, that help, 
and that salvation of thy G-od thou trastedst in ? Thy 
God is not such a one as thou boastedst him to be. 
When I remember, when I hear such things, my soul 
is poured out within me. Love is large; he that 
loves has a large heart, he can never receive or do too 
much ; he would have all he can, and he would give 
all he hath to the Lord. He is tender how any thing 
be withheld that is due, how any thing be wasted 
elsewhere that might be useful to the Lord. 

Nor can love bear his 'displeasure. The displeas- 
ure of men it bears, and rejoices ; the wrath and rage 
of Satan it bears, and triumphs ; though all the world 
be displeased and provoked, if G-od smiles, it is well 



enough. Lord, lift thou up the light of thy counte- 
nance upon me, and my heart shall be glad. Psa. 4. 
" Thou didst hide thy face, and I was troubled." Psa. 
30 : 7. Let him correct me, but Oh, not in fury ; let 
him smite, but not frown ; let him kill me, so he will 
but love me. And though he smite, though he kill me, 
yet will I love and trust in him. my God, let me 
rather die in thy love, than live in thy displeasure : 
there is life in that death, this life is death to me. 
Let me not be dead while alive ; turn away thine 
anger which kills my heart." 

It is impatient of divine displeasure, and thence it 
is grievous to it that it does itself displease him ; 
thence it opposes sin, and condemns itself for it. Is 
tin's thy kindness to thy friend ? Lovest thou God, 
soul ? "What, and yet provokest him thus daily ; love, 
and yet neglect to seek and follow thy God; love, 
and yet so lame and so slow, and so heavy and so 
sparing in thy services to him ? Is this a.ll thy love 
will do ? Not deny thine ease, or thy pleasure, or 
thy liberty, or thine appetite, or thy companion, for 
the sake of the Lord; choose rather to please thy 
friend, or thy flesh, than to please God? Is this thy 
love? Is this thy kindness to thy friend? false 
heart, unworthy, unworthy spirit, how canst thou 
look thy God in the face? How canst thou say, "I 
love thee," when thy heart is no more with him ? 

The tenderness of love is also seen in its jealousy. 
He that loves the Lord is jealous, and jealousy hath 
a tender edge ; he is jealous, not of, but for the Lord 
not of his God, but of himself, lest any thing should 


steal away his heart from God. Love would be 
chaste, would not bestow itself elsewhere ; and yet is 
in great jealousy lest it be enticed and drawn away. 
He that loves the Lord, has not any thing, whether 
wife, or child, or friend, or estate, or esteem, that 
gets near his heart, but he is jealous of them, lest 
they steal it away. " Get you down," he says, " keep 
you lower ; this heart is neither yours nor mine : 
my God, it is thine ; it is thine, Lord, take it wholly 
to thee, keep it to thyself, let no other lovers be sharers 
with thee." 

(2.) There is a tenderness of fear. The tender 
heart is a trembling heart, and manifests the tender- 
ness of fear in its suspicion and its caution. 

In its suspicion. The fearful are suspicious ; they 
look further than they see ; he that is in dread, will 
be in doubt what may befall him, he suspects a sur- 
prisal ; every bush is a thief, every bait he fears may 
have a hook under it. There is a foolish and cause- 
less fear ; and there is a prudent and holy fear : this 
fear is a principle of wisdom. Psalm 111 : 10. "A 
prudent man foreseeth the evil," Prov. 22 : 3, but 
fools go on ; the snare is never nearer than to the se- 
cure ; bold, venturous sinners never want for woe, the 
devil may spare his cunning when he has to do with 
such. Nothing that looks like sin offers itself to a 
tender heart, but he presently suspects it ; every pleas- 
ant morsel, every pleasant cup, every pleasant com- 
panion that comes, any thing that tickles and gratifies 
the flesh, he looks through it ere he will touch it, lest 
it betray his soul from God. " There may be a 


snare in the dish, a snare in my cup, a snare in 
my company ; and what if there should !" He feeds 
himself with fear, dwells, walks, converses, works, 
recreates himself with a trembling heart and jealous 

His fear also appears in his caution. Fear is 
wary : some commanders have set their scout- watches 
unarmed, that fear might make them watchful. A 
fearful Christian will take heed what and whom he 
trusts ; he dares not trust himself in such company 
as may he a snare unto him. He dares not trust his 
heart among temptations, he will keep the devil at a 
distance, he will not come near where his nets do lie. 
Blessed is he that thus feareth always. the un- 
speakable mischief, the multitudes of sins, that 
we run upon through, our secure hearts ! "I never 
thought of it, I never dreamed of any such danger. 
Oh, I am undermined, I am overreached, I am sur- 
prised ; my foot is in the snare, the gin hath taken 
me by the heel, my soul is among lions, sin hath got- 
ten hold on me, my heart is gone ere I was aware, 
the enemy has come in and carried it away, has giv- 
en it to lust, to the world, to pleasure, to divide it 
among themselves ; my faith has failed, my conscience 
is denied, my love is grown cold, my grace withered, 
my comforts wasted, my peace broken; and my God, 
Oh, where is he gone ? Woe is me, the evil- that I 
feared not is come upon me ; had I feared, I had not 
fallen. that I had been wise, had kept my watch, 
had stood upon my guard ; .,had I thought, had I 
thought, I had escaped all tliis danger." Christians, 


be wise in season, and take heed of the fool's too late, 
"Had I known it."' 

(3.) There is a tenderness of sorrow. Sorrow is 
the melting of the heart, the stone dissolved ; sorrow 
is the wound of the heart : a wound is tender, love is 
tender, and therefore so is godly sorrow, which is the 
sorrow of love ; you may call it a love-sickness. Love 
is both the pain and pleasure of a mourning heart, it 
is love that wounds, and love that heals; it is both 
the weapon and the oil ; this sorrow hath its joy, the 
melted is the most joyful heart ; it is love that makes 
it sad ; it weeps because it loves : and it is love that 
makes it glad too ; it therefore joys because in its sor- 
rows it sees that it loves. It is love that makes the 
wound, the occasion of this sorrow being love abused. 
"What hast thou done, soul? Whom hast thou de- 
spised ? Against whom hast thou lifted up thyself? 
Thou hast sinned, thou hast sinned, and hast thereby 
smitten and grieved thy G-od that loves thee, and 
whom thou lovest. Thou hast but one friend in heav-v 
en and earth, and him thou hast abused ; to please 
thy lust, thou hast pierced thy Lord, thou hast trans- 
gressed his commandments, trampled upon his com- 
passions, and broken his bonds : his greatness and his 
goodness, his law and his very love have been despised 
by thee ; him who loved thee hast thou smitten. Is 
this thy kindness to thy friend ? vile, ungracious, 
unkind, unthankful, unnatural heart, what hast thou 

Put all this now together, and you have the heart 
of flesh which the covenant promises, a tender heart, 


a heart that is tender of sin and duty, that carefully 
shuns sin, or is sure to smart for it ; that neither 
slights sin nor duty, that says not of the one or the 
other, It is hut a little one ; that can feel sufferings, 
but not fret at them : a tender conscience, that will 
neither wink at sin nor excuse the sinner, that will 
not hold the sinner guiltless nor say unto the wicked 
Thou art righteous, that will not be smitten but it 
will smite again, that will give due warning arid due 
correction : a flexible, tractable heart, that will not 
resist and rebel ; that says unto the Lord, "What wilt 
thou have me to do ? and will not say of any thing 
G-od wills, Any thing but this : a willing, ductile heart, 
stiff against nothing but sin, that a word from heav- 
en will lead to any thing : a heart of love, that bears 
good- will to the Lord and all that he does or requires, 
in which good- will lies radically every good work; 
that says not of any duties or sufferings, This is too 
great, or of any sin, This is nothing ; that would be 
any thing or nothing, so Grod may be all ; that would 
rather be displeased than displease ; that is not dis- 
pleased when God is pleased : a trembling heart, that 
fears more than it sees, and flies from what it fears ; 
whom fear makes to beware: a melting heart, a 
mourning heart, that wounds itself in the wounds it 
hath given to the Lord and his name; that can 
grieve in love, and can love and grieve where it can- 
not weep. In sum, it is a heart that can feel, that 
can bleed, that can weep ; or at least that can yield 
and stoop where it cannot weep, nor feel but little ; 
that will easily be commanded where it is not sen- 


sibly melted : this is a soft heart, this is the heart of 
flesh: "I will take away the stone, and give them a 
heart of flesh." 

Oh, what a blessing is such a heart; what a 
plague is a hard heart ! Oh, what prisoners are the 
men of this world : in prison under Satan, in prison 
under sin, hound under' a curse, shut up under unbe- 
lief and impenitence : the hard heart is the iron gate 
that shuts them in that they cannot go out. Romans 
2 : 5. Oh, what a hospital is this world hecome of 
blind and lame and sick and crippled and wounded 
creatures. Whence are all the calamities and dis- 
tresses that befall them, but from the hardness of 
their hearts ? The stone in their hearts breeds all 
their diseases, brings all their calamities ; hath blinded 
their eyes, and broken their bones, and wasted their 
estates : there is not one misery that befalls them, but 
they may write over it, This is the hardness of my 
heart. Oh, what a Sodom is this world become, for 
wickedness as well as for wrath ; what drunkenness, 
what adulteries, what oaths, what blasphemies, and 
all sorts of monstrous sins do everywhere abound: 
whence is all this, but from the hardness of men's 
hearts ? If you say, "It is from other causes ; it is 
from unbelief, from ignorance, from impotence, from 
temptations," let it be granted ; yet still it is from 
hardness of heart. They are wilfully ignorant, wil- 
fully weak, wilfully run into temptations ; they shut 
their eyes and stop their ears, they will not see, they 
will not believe. Oh, what losses do they sustain : 
how many Sabbaths are lost ; how many sermons are 


lost ; how many reproofs, counsels, corrections, are 
lost ; a gospel lost, and souls thereby likely to be lost 
for ever. Oh, what prodigies are they become, under 
all this sin and misery ! and yet merry, jolly, laugh- 
ing, and singing and sporting and feasting and brav- 
ing it out, as if nothing ailed them. Feeling nothing 
of all that is come upon them, and fearing nothing of 
all that is coining. Warn them, reprove them, be- 
seech them, it is all but preaching to a stone. It may 
be you have sometimes wondered to see a company of 
thieves in prison, drinking and carousing and making 
merry, when they know that in a few days they must 
be brought out and hanged. "When thou wonder est 
at these, wonder at thyself. "What bitter complaints 
do we sometimes hear, even from the best of saints. 
"0 this hard heart; this stubborn spirit. I can- 
not mourn, I cannot stoop, I cannot submit. ' Why hast 
thou hardened our heart from thy fear ?' Isa. 63 : 17. 
Or why hast thou left us, or given us up to a hard heart ? 
Why hast thou not softened and humbled and broken 
us ? Thou hast humbled us, and we are not hum- 
bled broken us, and we are not broken ; thou hast 
broken our land, broken our peace, broken our backs, 
but the stone is not yet broken. for one breach 
more, Lord ; our hearts, our hearts, let these be once 
broken ; 'our streets mourn, the cities of our solemni- 
ties mourn, the ways of Zion mourn. Oh, when wilt 
thou give us a mourning spirit ?" 

what sorrow-bitten souls are the saints for their 
want of sorrow. " I mourn, Lord, I lament, I weep; 
but it is because I cannot mourn or lament as I should : 


if I could mourn as I ought, I could be comforted ; if 
I could weep, I could rejoice ; if I could sigh, I could 
sing ; if I could lament, I could live ; I die, I die, my 
heart dies within me, because I cannot cry; I cry, 
Lord, but not for sin, but for tears for sin; I cry, 
Lord, my calamities cry, my bones cry, my soul cries, 
my sins cry, ' Lord, for a broken heart,' and behold, 
yet I am not broken. The rocks rend, the earth 
quakes, the heavens drop, the clouds weep, the sun 
will blush, the moon be ashamed, the foundations of 
the earth will tremble at the presence of the Lord, but 
this heart will neither break nor tremble. for a 
broken heart ! If this were once done, might my soul 
have this wish, ' thenceforth my God might have his 
will : what would be hard, if my heart were tender ? 
Labor would be easy, pains would be a pleasure, bur- 
dens would be light. Neither the command nor the 
cross would be any longer grievous, nothing would be 
hard but sin. Fear, where art thou ? come and plough 
up this rock. Love, where art thou ? come and thaw 
this ice, come and warm this dead lump, come and 
enlarge this straitened spirit, then shall I run the way 
of his commandments." 

brethren, how little, how very little of this ten- 
derness is there to be found in most Christians ! The 
sacrifice of God is a broken heart ; Oh, how far must 
the Lord go to find himself such a sacrifice ! "We do 
but cast stones up to heaven when we lift up our 
hearts : it is a wonder that such hearts as we carry 
do not break, that our marble weeps not ; that if noth- 
ing else will do it, our hardness doth not make us 


relent ; that we should so labor under, and complain 
of, and yet not be sick of the stone. 

Broken hearts, yielding and relenting spirits, ten- 
der consciences, Oh, where are they? afraid of sin, 
tender of transgressing, or mourning under it ? when 
shall it once be? Our lusts no more broken; our 
pride, our passion, our envy, our earthliness, no more 
broken ; so venturous on temptation, so bold on sin, 
such liberty taken to transgress, such mincing and 
palliating, and excusing of sin as we find is this oiir 
brokenness ? We are tender, it is true ; but of what? 
Of dishonoring Grod, of abusing grace, of neglecting 
duty, of defiling conscience, of wounding our souls ? 
No, it is of our flesh that we are so tender tender of 
labor, tender of trouble, tender of our credit, of our 
name and reputation : a tender shoulder we have, a 
tender hand, a tender foot ; they can bear nothing, and 
do nothing ; nothing can touch our flesh, nothing can 
touch our idols, our ease, or our estates, but we shrink 
and smart, and are put to pain. Grod may be smitten, 
and we feel it not ; the gospel may be smitten, the 
church may be smitten, conscience may be smitten, 
and it moves us not. We can fear an affliction, fear a 
reproach; that we so much feared a temptation or a 
sin ! We cannot lack bread but we feel the want ; we 
cannot want clothes, or a house, or a friend, but we feel 
it ; we cannot want our sleep, our quiet, our pleasure, 
our respect from men, but we feel it ; any thing that 
pinches our flesh pierces our heart. We cannot pine, 
or languish in our bodies, but we feel it ; a fever or an 
ague, a consumption, dropsy, or any bodily sickness, 


0, it makes us sick at heart ; a froward yoke-fellow, 
an unthrifty servant, an ill neighbor, a scoff, a slight 
cannot be borne ; but 0, how much sin can be .borne! 
"While our flesh will bear nothing, how much can 
conscience bear, and never complain ! 

Christians, consider. When our flesh must be thus 
caressed, whatever corne of it must be tenderlv fed, 

' t/ f 

must have soft raiment, soft lodging, soft usage be 
dealt gently with, though to maintain it conscience 
must be racked, and racked, and wasted; when our 
wills cannot be crossed, our appetites cannot be de- 
nied, but a tumult follows, the soul is in an uproar, 
and conscience meanwhile must be denied, and. sent 
away in silence ; when the word works no more, 
when the prints of it are not received, the power of 
it is resisted ; when the rod works no more, when 
our stripes make no sign, when the lashes on our 
backs touch not our hearts ; when we remain so 
vain and so wanton, so wilful, carnal, and earthly, 
after the Lord hath been preaching and chastising us 
into a better frame ; when we stand upon our terms, 
keep our distances, our animosities, our heats and 
heights of spirit, our censurings, our quarrellings one 
with another, Christian with Christian, professor with 
professor, after the Lord hath been beating us together 
to make us friends, and all to teach us more humility 
and charity is this our brokenness ? Is this our ten- 
derness, when upon any of the -Lord's rougher deal-, 
ing with us, smiting our faces, throwing us on our 
backs, trampling us in the dirt, we are yet no more 
brought on our knees ? Is this our brokenness, when 

Kcavcn Oprac^. O 


the Lord hath been awakening us out of sleep, putting 
his spurs and goads in our sides to quicken us on our 
way; calling to us, "Arise, sleepers, stir up your spir- 
its, sluggards, mend your .pace : I will not be put off 
as I have been ; no more such loitering and idling and 
trifling and halting as hath been ; I must have another 
manner of service, of praying and hearing and walking 
and working, than hath been : be zealous and amend ; 
more labor, more care, more watchfulness, more ac- 
tivity, more of the spirit and soul of what you pro- 
fess ?" "When the Lord hath been thus goading and 
spurring us on, and though our flesh feels, yet our 
hearts will not feel, nor answer the goad or spur, is 
tins an evidence of tenderness ? 

When great duties ofre little, and lesser are none ; 
when great sins are infirmities, and little ones are 
nothing; when lying and defrauding, when false 
weights, false wares, and false dealings, when de- 
faming, backbiting, talebearing, railing, reviling, do 
stand for little more than ciphers ; when fellowship 
and familiarity with evil men in their sins, and 
compliance with or connivance at their wickedness ; 
when sinful corn-tings and complimentings of such, to 
the hardening them in their ways, do pass for virtues 
and 'civilities ; when frothy, wanton discourse and. 
communication, when scoffing and making a sport 
at the sins or infirmities of others, when sinful, vain 
jesting, wherein rather conscience than wit must be 
denied when all these pass for our ornaments rather 
than our evils, where is our tenderness ? 

When upon auditing our accounts, examining our 


books, and reckoning up our scores, where a talent is 
owing, we bid conscience, "Take thy bill, and write 
down a shekel ;" where -twenty or a hundred sins are 
to be reckoned for, "Take thy bill, and write down 
ten, or but one, and that a little one :" when we are 
so free in multiplying and so false in numbering our 
iniquities, where is our tenderness'? 

Well, Christians, the Lord hath promised a tender 
heart, to make these stones flesh ; and something pos- 
sibly is done already upon you towards it. let this 
sad sight now laid before you, this view of what is 
wanting, have some influence upon you. Let sorrow 
that no more is done, work what is yet undone; let 
your' imbrokenness break your hearts ; let the stone 
that yet remains make your flesh bleed. If you yet 
feel no more, may you at least feel this that you 
feel not. 




Lord thy God will circumcise thy heart, 
and the heart of thy seed, to love the Lord thy God 
with all thy heart, and with all thy soul." Deut. 30 : 6. 
Love is the soul of the new creature ; the closing of 
the soul with Grod. He that hath most of God, is 
most a Christian ; and he that hath most of love-, hath 
most of God. God is love. 

In treating of this love to God, we shall consider 
its ohject, and its act. 

I. ITS OBJECT. The object of divine love is God. 
God is good, and good is amiable. God is all good : 
there is none good but one, that is God. God is es- 
sentially good, goodness in the abstract ; he is infi- 
nitely excellent, he is all perfection. In this one 
attribute all the rest of the attributes of God are in- 
cluded, and this in each of them. However the Scrip- 
tures, speaking to our capacities, describe God and his 
glorious attributes in several and distinct notions, yet 
in each one all are included ; each one is infinite, and 
infinite perfection is essentially all perfection. God is 
originally good, the fountain and pattern of all that 
moral good which is in his creatures ; he is bountiful 
and gracious, ready to do them good ; and he is the 
felicitating end, or the final blessedness of the soul. 


The goodness of God to his creatures has its different 
and various appellations. As it is freely bestowed, it 
is grace ; as it. respects them as needy, it is bounty ; 
as in misery, it is mercy and compassion ; as provok- 
ing, it is patience ; as it intends their good, it is love ; 
as it answers both their necessities and capacities, it 
is all-sufficiency. All these, his bounty, mercy, com- 
passion, patience, love, all-sufficiency, all these are in 
one word his goodness, and goodness calls for love. 
The object of this love is God : particularly, 1. (rod 
in himself; 2. God in Christ ; 3. God in all the things 
of God. 

1. God in himself, as he is infinitely excellent, 
and so worthy of all love. God is to be loved in 
himself, and for himself, for his own worthiness ; God 
is good in himself, and therefore to be loved for him- 

2. God in Christ. In whom alone, considering 
us as sinners, he can be said to be good to us. There 
is a fourfold incentive of love perception, proportion, 
propriety, possession. 

Perception, the apprehension or understanding of 
the object to be loved. We must know before we 
can love : now God cannot be seen by mortals ; he 
dwelleth in light, but that light is to us invisible. 
Christ is the glass, in which this glory may be seen. 
"We cannot see God but through a veil of flesh, in the 
face of Jesus Christ. 2 Cor. 4:6. "No man hath 
seen God at any time ;" but " the Only Begotten of 
the Father," who is in the bosom of the Father, he 
hath- revealed him. John 1 : 18. 


Proportion. And there is a double proportion 
requisite ; in respect to quantity, there must be suffi- 
ciency ; and in respect to quality, there must be suit- 
ableness. God himself is proportioned to us, consid- 
ered as rational creatures, and in our state of inno- 
cency he is both a sufficient and a suitable good ; 
but God in Christ only is suited to us, considered as 
lapsed creatures in a state of sin. God in Christ is a 
God of pity and compassion to us ; a God of patience, 
a God of mercy, with whom is plenteous redemption. 
A God pardoning iniquity, and passing by transgres- 
sion ; loving us in our low estate, loving us and pity- 
ing us, loving us and pardoning us, loving us and 
washing us, loving us and saving us from our sins 
and from the wrath to come. And such love is the 
great flame that kindles love ; love breaking forth out 
of a cloud of wrath and fury and displeasure ; abused 
love, provoked love, and yet forgiving love : to whom 
much is forgiven, they will love much. 

Propriety, or interest. "What is good, good for us, 
and our own good, that carries our hearts. We must 
love our own good, because we must love ourselves. 
Our love to God is heightened by our due self-love. 
There is a sinful self-love, when either we love that for 
a self which is not ourself, when we love our flesh 
and fleshly interest, or when we love ourselves inor- 
dinately, -more than God, and God only for. ourselves; 
and there is a lawful self-love, when we love ourselves 
in the Lord and for the Lord. And the more we thus 
love ourselves, the more is the Lord loved by us ; and 
the more he is our own, the more love he has from us. 


Now in Christ the Lord is our God ; our own G-od, 
even our own God. " Thou art my God, and I will 
praise thee. Thou art my God, I will exalt thee." 
Psa. 118 : 28. The Lord is God, and we therefore 
love him; the Lord is good, gracious, merciful, and 
we therefore love him, yea, and ought to love him. 
whether he be ours or not ; but when both meet, he 
is God, and our God; he is good and our good, gra- 
cious, merciful, all-sufficient and all this to us : hence 
is our love made perfect in us. 

Possession. We can love a distant, an absent 
good, a good that is only possible; there is love in 
hope,, but the nearer any good is to us that is really 
good, the more attractive and acceptable it is. It is 
most in our hearts when it is most in our hands. 
Indeed, those things which are only fancied and finite 
good, being overrated and judged to be better than 
they are, are loved most at a distance, because when 
they come to hand we see our mistakes. But that 
which is what it seemed ; much more, that which is 
above our thoughts, beyond our expectations, infinite 
good, is ever the dearer to us the nearer it comes. 
All worldly good is most valued, at least by carnal 
hearts, at a distance ; they promise themselves more 
enjoyment in it than it has to give them; their pos- 
session is their disappointment. While they lusted, 
they idolized, they adored ; but when they have tasted 
and eaten, it comes out at their nostrils. Or else they 
sit down with the shame of the disappointed; they 
are either surfeited, or hungry still "Is this all 
all you can do for me ; all the pleasure and comfort 


I shall have of you ? Is all my expectation of delight 
and satisfaction come to no more than this ? Misera- 
ble comforters are you all." Possession and fruition 
are the proof of all tilings. And vanity once tried is 
the less loved. But God being an all-sufficient, in- 
comprehensible good, the nearer to us he is, and the 
more he is. ours, the more we prize and love him; 
because now we find that the half had not been 
told us. 

Now in Christ, we have not only a propriety in 
G-od, but in some degree a present possession. "He 
that hath the Son, hath the Father also." "We see 
his light, we feel his love, we taste his goodness, we 
enjoy his presence, we have God with us, we have 
God in us, we have fellowship with him, he dwelleth 
in us and we in him ; and hence we love, and herein 
we rejoice. 

3. In all the tilings of God: in his word, ordi- 
nances, sabbaths, saints, in graces, duties, in all his 
ways ; the saints love God, and love his word ; it is 
God in the word they love ; they love God, and they 
love ordinances, and sabbaths, and saints : it is God 
in all these they love ; they love the ways, and works, 
and all the dispensations of God, and it is God in them 
all they love ; they see God in every thing, and they 
love God wherever they see him. They look on all 
these things with another eye, and therefore embrace 
them with another heart than other men. The saints' 
love to the things of God, is their love to God ; for it 
is God in them that they love ; their love to them is 
founded either on their participation of God, or rela- 


tion to God. They love the things of God, because 
they are the offspring, the images, and the chariots 
of God. 

The things of God are the offspring of God ; as 
the saints are born from above, so all the things of 
God come down from above, and therefore may also 
be called, as the apostle styles them, things, above : 
"If ye be risen with Christ, seek those things that 
are above, set your affection on things above." Col. 
3 : 1, 2. Whatsoever is from God, and belongs to his 
heavenly kingdom, is divine and heavenly; and he 
that loveth him that begets, therefore loveth those 
which are begotten, and whatsoever proceedeth from 

The word and the saints are the images of God, 
the character and impress of God are upon them ; the 
grace in the saints, and the holy truths in the word, 
are the very face of Christ, who is full of grace and 
truth; and this is their rule, Love God, and love his 

The things of God are the chariots of God. He 
that makes the clouds his chariots, makes also his word, 
and his ordinances, and his ministers his chariots, 
wherein he rides down into those lower parts to give 
the world a meeting. "When ministers come, and the 
word comes down, God comes down in them to visit 
his people : as it was said of Paul, so it is true of 
Apollos, and Cephas, and all the dispensers of the gos- 
pel, they are chosen vessels to bear his name before 
the sons of men ; and as they are the chariots in which 
God comes down, so are they also the wagons which 


he has sent them, to fetch them up to himself. In 
their duties, in their prayers, in their praises, the saints 
send up their hearts unto God. Israel's heart leaped 
when he saw the wagons which Joseph had sent. 0, 
what love does the psalmist express to the house and 
courts of the Lord! "How amiahle are thy taber- 
nacles ! I was glad when they said unto me, Let us 
go into the house of the Lord." He was glad to go 
thither, because thence he hoped to be carried higher, 
from the mountain to the mansion from mount Zion 
here below, to Jerusalem which is above. 

It is the duty and the d.elight of the saints to be 
ascending heavenwards : they are dead with Christ, 
they are risen with Christ ; and it is not as they would 
with them, but when they are ascending up with 
Christ : they are dead with Christ by repentance and 
humiliation; they are risen with Christ by faith and 
sanctification ; and they ascend, with Christ by love 
and holy affection: this is their chariot of fire, a 
chariot within a chariot, that through duties and 
ordinances rides up in its own flames to the God of 

Or, if you will, the ordinances of God are our 
Jacob's ladder reaching from heaven to earth, by 
which angels descend and souls ascend. God comes 
down and hearts go up, praises go up and blessings 
come down. Thou hast not proved what an ordi- 
nance is, what prayer means, or preaching means, or 
sacraments mean, who hast . not seen God coming 
down, nor felt thy heart ascending by them : he that 
hath felt this will say, Here let me dwell ; let others 


be where they will, among their flocks, among their 
herds, upon their beds, at their cups, at their pleas- 
ures, or in their houses; it is good for me to be here. 

No wonder, Christians, that carnal hearts are such 
strangers to the word, can so well be absent from 
divine worship and ordinances ; preaching and pray- 
ing and sabbaths they can spare, and not feel their 
want; what wonder? What is heaven to earth? 
"What is Gfod to flesh ? These chariots would carry 
them away from their gods, carry them out of their . 
own country into a strange land,, where they have 
neither possession nor acquaintance. But 0, what a 
sad wonder is it, that saints should go up so often 
into the chariots, and yet get no nearer home ; that 
they should still be so much on. the earth, that have 
been so often mounted for heaven ; that their hearts 
should still be on the dunghills, whose feet are so 
often on the mountain of the Lord; that the wagons 
should be so often sent down, and go up empty, scarce 
a heart sent up in them ; yea, that they should be so 
far from God, when God is among them. "Where is 
your love, Christians ? How is it that it is still below ? 
What have you here ? Your city is above, your home 
is above, your Grod, your Jesus, your treasure is above. 
Oh, how is it, that where your treasure is, your hearts 
are not also ? Hear from God, and God not with the 
messenger! send up to heaven your eyes, your hands, 
your prayers, your complaints, your promises, and 
still leave your hearts below! send up your hearts to 
heaven, and let them return again dow r n to this earth; 
remain earth, and flesh, and filth, and vanity, after 


so much converse or pretence to it, with the holy Grod 
of spirits ! Lovest thou G-od, -when thou canst so often 
go where he is, and not care to see him ; or if thou 
meet him, canst let him go without a blessing ; or if 
he bless thee, canst go presently and exchange thy 
Father's blessing for a mess of pottage ; canst lose a 
duty in a dinner, the comforts and revivings of a ser- 
mon, of a sacrament, of a sabbath, in an hour's car- 
nal converse with the world? Did we love our God 
more, certainly we should be more with him, and to 
better purpose. His meetings would be more precious, 
and the fruits of them more lasting. "We should nei- 
ther go away without his blessing, nor throw it away 
when we had got it. Thus much for the object of love. 
II. ITS ACT. Love is a natural affection. The 
love of God is the soul's clasping or closing with the 
Lord. It is the expansion, or going out of the heart 
in its strength after God the uniting or knitting of 
the soul with God, with a complacency and acqui- 
escence in him. There are three things included in 
this love. 

1. The strength of the heart making out after G-od. 
This is that which is commonly called our love of de- 
sire, the breathing, or thirsting, or panting of the heart 
after G-od, Psa. 42 : 1 ; the heart's working Grod- wards 
with its whole might ; loving him above all things, 
desiring him above all tilings, with the greatest vigor 
and intentness, and as its complete and adequate 
object. G-od is its all. "Whom have I in heaven 
but thee, and there is none upon earth that I desire 
besides thee." 


2. The uniting of the soul with God. Our cleav- 
ing to him. By love heart cleaves to heart, .soul 
cleaves to soul. It is said of Shechem, Gen. 34 : 3, 
that his heart clave unto. Dinah. He loved her with 
his heart, she was gotten into his heart, and there his 
heart holds her. Barnabas exhorts the church, that 
with purpose of heart they would cleave unto the 
Lord. Acts 11 : 23. It is the knitting of the soul 
with God. It is said, 1 Sam. 18 : 1, that the soul of 
Jonathan was knit with the soul of David, and Jona- 
than loved him as his own soul. And of Jacob, Gen. 
44 : 30, to express his tender love to Benjamin, it is 
said, his life was bound up in the lad's life. Of the 
multitude of believers we read, Acts 4 : 32, that they 
were all of- one heart and of one soul. Their love had 
knit them into one. By love we are one with God, 
and he with us. It is the soul's willing of God, if I 
may so speak willing of God to itself, and willing 
itself and all to God. All praises, all honor, all bless- 
edness to him. " Be thou mine, Lord ; nothing less, 
nothing else. Be thou mine, I need no less, I desire 
no more. Let me be thine, be to thee, be for thee, 
thy. servant, thy sacrifice, or what thou wilt; and let 
all mine be thine my heart, and my hand, and my 
tongue, and my time, and my interest. Let all thine 
be to thee ; thy heavens and thy earth, with every 
' person and every creature in them. Let every heart, 
every mouth, every limb, every creature, be a praise 
to the Lord. Let the Lord live, and blessed be my 
rock ; let the God of my salvation be exalted. Let 
every knee bow, let every tongue confess unto God." 


This is our love of union, as it is called. And it is 
the very essence of saving love, wherein are included 
both our accepting God, with the surrender or resigna- 
tion of ourselves unto him, and our wishing and will- 
ing all glory, dominion, and blessedness to him. And 
so here also is our love of benevolence. All these 
may be included in that opening of the heart men- 
tioned Acts 16 : 14. It is there said that the Lord 
opened Lydia's heart. The heart is then savingly 
opened, when it freely lets out itself upon God, all its 
streams run in to the Lord, and when it takes God 
into the depth of the soul. The heart thus opened to 
the Lord, when God is come in, will close upon him. 
"Abide with me; thou hast entered into thy habita- 
tion. let this be thy dwelling for ever." Only this 
must be further added, that with G-od it takes in all 
things of God his word, his ordinances, his ways, 
and all his dispensations. "With Ms love, his laws ; 
with his comforts, his counsels ; with his counsels, 
his corrections. "With thee," it says, "I accept of 
all that is thine, both thy yoke and thy cross ; thy- 
self, Lord, thy love, Lord, and whatever thou wilt 
with thee." 

3. The soul's taking pleasure, and taking up its 
rest in him. This is called our love of complacency. 
"Where we love, there will be a delightful stay of the 
mind upon God. The object dwells in the eye ; we 
are still looking where we love. "When I awake, I 
am still with thee j" there our thoughts are, of him is 
our meditation all the day long. 

My meditation of him shall be sweet. He that 


loves, dwelleth in G-od : " I will dwell in the house of 
the Lord for ever." And why there ? Because there 
our G-od dwells, and therefore there the soul takes up 
its dwelling. There is also an acquiescence of the 
heart in him. "Return unto thy rest, my soul." 
But this is not felt till love hath. obtained its object; 
till the soul feels itself to love, and to have what it 
loves ; to love, and to be beloved ; to accept, and to 
be accepted of God. "When it comes to this, then I 
have enough. "I am my Beloved's, and my Beloved 
is mine." And here is the sweetness of religion, the 
marrow and fatness of godliness, the pleasure of love. 
W hen I love, I can rest ; when I can rest, I can re- 
joice ; when I feel myself to love, I know I am be- 
loved ; and then what is there wanting ? Where love 
is a stranger, joy is not known ; we can never take 
comfort in any thing but in that which we love. 
"When take we pleasure in eating but when we have 
food that we love ? What is a friend, or a wife, or a 
child, when we love them not ? What is society or 
communion, where love h.as not first made a union !? 
Can two walk together except they be agreed ? with 
little comfort surely ; they would be better pleased, 
were they 'parted asunder. It is love that is the pleas- 
ure of our lives. It is love that makes heaven sweet ; 
there we shall have our fill of joy, because there we 
have our fill of love. Heaven would be no heaven, 
God himself could not be the joy, if he were not the 
love of his saints. What bitter draughts will love, 
sweeten ! Sin and lusts and all the filth of the flesh 
are sweet morsels to carnal hearts ; it is the meat they 


love ; G-od is nothing, Christ is nothing to them. "What 
is thy Beloved more than another ? Religion is a bond- 
age to them, holiness a weariness ; to them not the 
labors only, but the joys of the saints are empty and 
unsavory. There are no true feasts but love-feasts. 
Love will make any thing relish. When it puts such 
a sweetness into sin that even death and hell will go 
down with carnal hearts for its sake, what a feast 
will love make of holiness and glory! Get love to 
Christ, love to religion, and you will never demand, 
"Where is the blessedness, where is the sweetness of 
religion ? 

Love will sweeten both the comforts and the ex- 
ercises of religion ; it will make duties sweet, yea, and 
sufferings sweet : there are two things that are natu- 
rally sweet to it to please, and to praise. 

(1.) He that loves, will please the one whom he 
loves. How careful are such to watch themselves, 
that they grieve not their friend; what study does 
love put them upon to find out what is grateful and 
acceptable acceptable looks, acceptable language, 
acceptable entertainment. "What wilt thou, Lord? 
what wilt thou have me to be ? a servant, a door- 
keeper, a servant of servants for thee? I will be 
nothing but what thou wilt, any thing that thou wilt 
have me. What wilt thou have. me to do, Lord? let 
me know thy will, appoint me my work. that my 
ways were so directed that I might keep thy statutes. 
' What wilt thou have of me ? Wilt thou have mine 
idols, mine ease, or my honor, or my pleasure, or my 
house, or my estate ? Wilt thou have mine Isaacs ? 


Is there any one thing dearer to me than another, that 
might be an offering to the Lord ? "Wilt thou have 
my liberty or my life ? Behold, all is at thy feet : I 
can keep back nothing thou callest for." 

Hence, love is said to be the fulfilling of the law; 
there is in this good- will radically every good work. 
It would walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, 
being fruitful in every good work. Love is generous, 
it would do great things, noble tilings : What shall I 
do for him whom my soul honors ? for a gift that 
might be worthy of him! but I have nothing, my 
goodness extendeth not to thee. It would give more 
than it owes ; but 'where it cannot do so, where it 
cannot be generous, yet it would be just ; it would 
level all accounts, and pay all debts ; love would have 
nothing but love owing. It would give to all their 
due ; it would not die in the debt of a servant, of a 
stranger ; much less would it take from the God of 
glory. This is the daily charge of love, Pay what 
thou owest. Its receipts and returns are a pleasure 
to it ; any thing that comes down from heaven, and 
every present it has to- send thither, is a joy to love. 
This is the message that both speak, Happy soul, thou 
lovest and art beloved. It catches at all opportunities 
to send up messages of love, and knows no fitter 
messenger to send by, than the hand of duty ; every 
duty is dispatched with this superscription, The trib- 
ute of love. 

Love is the spring that sets all our wheels a going, 
the mould in which all our works are formed, the 
fire in the heart that vents itself in our words and 


ways. " The fire burned ; then spake I with my 
tongue." Love is to a saint what malice is to Satan, 
that which gives force to all his actings. Satan's . 
temptations are called fiery darts ; and this, not only 
because they are headed and barbed with fire like 
poisoned arrows, they burn where they hit ; they set 
sin on fire, they set the soul on fire, burning with lust 
and wickedness but because they are winged with 
fire, and forced with fire. The bullet is fired out of 
the gun, and therefore it flies so fiercely. It is the 
malice of Satan's heart that fires out all his darts. 
"What malice doth with Satan, that doth love with 
saints. It sets the heart in a flame of holy zeal and 
activity for G-od: "His word was in my heart as a 
burning fire; I was weary with forbearing." Jer. 
20 : 9. A heart of love is weary, not of action, but of 
idleness; weary with forbearing, not with doing; never 
weary of doing much, ever weary of doing nothing. 
"0 God, my heart is fixed, my heart is fixed," saitli 
the psalmist; "I will sing, and give thanks." Love 
will add, God', my heart is fixed, my heart is 
fixed ; there is a flame kindled ; my heart burneth in 
holy desires and zeal for thee. And where love hath 
set the heart a burning, the heart will set the hand a 
working and the feet a running. 

(2.) He that loves, will 'praise him whom he loves. 
Praise is comely, and praise is a pleasure to the up- 
right in heart. It is the delight of love to be speaking 
of the perfections, of the virtues, of the beauties, of 
the excellences of its beloved. The spouse in the 
book of Songs, whose language is all love, hath her 


heart so full that ner lips overflow with the mention 
of the excellences of Christ: My Beloved is white 
and ruddy, the chiefest among ten thousand. His 
head is fine gold, his eyes dove's ~eyes, his cheeks a 
bed of spices, his lips are lilies, his hands are gold 
rings, his legs pillars of marble, his countenance ex- 
cellent, his mouth sweet ; yea, he is altogether lovely : 
this is my Beloved, and this is my Friend, daugh- 
ters of Jerusalem. Sol. Song 5. " "Who is a Grod like 
unto" th.ee, glorious in holiness, fearful in praises, doing 
wonders? Great is the Lord, and greatly to "be 
praised in the city of our Grod. Thy mercy, Lord, 
is in the heavens, thy faithfulness reacheth into the 
clouds. Thy righteousness is like the great moun- 
tains, thy judgments are a great deep. How excel- 
lent is thy loving-kindness, Lord ! therefore the sons 
of men put their trust under the shadow of thy wings. 
I will speak of the glorious honor of thy majesty, and 
of thy wondrous works. The Lord is gracious, full 
of compassion, slow to anger, and of great mercy. 
The Lord is good to all, and his tender mercies are 
over all his works. Let all thy works praise thee, 
Lord ; let the saints "bless thee ; let them speak of 
the glory of thy kingdom, and talk of thy power ; let 
them abundantly utter the memory of thy goodness, 
and sing of thy righteousness." my God, thou art 
all love, all goodness, all grace, all glory. let thy 
servant be all praise ! Let this heart be an altar, .and 
every service a sacrifice ; let this mouth be a trum- 
pet, and every word a psalm ; let my breath be as 
incense, and every member a censer. Let all that is 

188 ."'; HEAVEN OPENED. 

within me, my soul, with, all its powers let all that 
is without me, my body, with all its members, shout 
for joy, and sing forth the high praises of (rod. ' This 
is the vbice of love. 

And thus you have another excellence of the new 
heart laid open to your view, love a heart to love. 

Christians, prize this precious grace, prize it, and 
you will write down this word also among the great 
and precious promises; and if you would prize it 
aright, take your estimate of it from its worth and 
its want, as we prize jewels according to their excel- 
lence and their rarity. 

(1.) Prize it according to its worth and excellence. 
Why, what is the worth ? " If a man would give all 
the substance of his house for love, it would be con- 
temned." The whole world is not of sufficient value 
to be a price for love ; no, it must come by gift, it is 
not to be bought for money, 1 love is worth as much 
as a soul, and that is more than all the world. " What 
shall it profit a man to gain the whole world, and lose 
his own soul ?" Love is as much worth as all religion ; 
it is the soul and the substance of all religion; all our 
graces, duties, and exercises are only valued according 
to the love that is in them. "What is knowledge, faith, 
hope, or patience, without love ? "What is prayer, fast- 
ing, or alms, without charity? They are worth noth- 
ing, shall I say? nay, they are nothing; if I had all 
knowledge and all faith, and were all prayer and all 
labor and all suffering, and had not charity, I were 
nothing. Love is worth as much as heaven is worth, 
as Christ and Grod are worth to us. God is love, and 


G-od is not in us, if love be not. Dost thou prize thy 
substance ? Is thy house, or thy money, or thy land, 
any thing to thee ? Dost thou value thy soul ? Is 
religion, is heaven, is Christ, is God himself of any 
account to thee? Then prize the love of God. Without 
love, God is no God to thee, Christ is no Christ to thee, 
heaven is no heaven for thee; tetter thou hadst no 
soul, no being, than no love. prize the love of God, 
prize and seek, prize and pray; pray as for thy life, as 
for thy soul, as for thine everlasting kingdom, "Lord, 
let me love thee." Get love, and get all : love, and 
thou wilt be holy ; love, and thou wilt be humble ; 
love, and thou wilt be fruitful ; love, and thou wilt 
please, praise, and enjoy thy God ; love, and thou wilt 
fear, serve, suffer, and die for him ; love, and thou 
shalt live. Prize love, prize it according to its worth. 
(2.) Prize it also according to its rarity. Things 
excellent are rated something the more for their scarc- 
ity; scarcity raises the market: "The word of the 
Lord was precious in those days," 1 Sam. 3:1, that 
is, when there was a famine of the word, when there 
was no open vision. were the love of God as pre- 
cious as it is rare ! "What a spiritless carcass is the 
religion of many professors ! what has become of the 
soul of it ? Oh, we freeze in our duties, we freeze in 
our devotions, we are almost frozen out of them all ; 
we have a sacrifice left, what fire is there to offer it 
up? "The God that answereth by fire, let him be 
God," saith Elijah; the heart that asketh by fire, that 
ascendeth in fire, let that be the heart for God : "Be- 
hold, the wood and the fire ; but where is the lamb for 


the sacrifice ?" We may say, " Behold the wood and 
the sacrifice ; but where is the fire to offer it up ?" Our 
spirits have taken a cold, the chill of them appears in 
all our duties. Love, where dwellest thou ? Zeal of 
God, where is thy abode ? How many houses must 
we search, how many hearts must we walk through, 
ere we find thy habitation ? The apostle tells the 
Eomans, that they have "a zeal of God, but not ac- 
cording to knowledge." . Rom. 10 : 2. "We have the 
knowledge of God, but 0, where is the zeal? "The 
zeal of thy house," saith the psalmist, "hath eaten 
me up ;" but is not that eater eaten ? The house has 
burned up the fire, or if there be any fire left, is it 
not strange fire ? Not the fire of love, but of lust, of 
pride, or covetousness, or that wild-fire, of envy and 
contention that heats our spirits ? Jehu was also on 
fire against the house of Ahab : " Come, see my zeal 
for the Lord of hosts." That fire was fury, not love ; 
or if it was love, it was self-love, not the love of God, 
that made all that flame : such hearts are like the 
evil tongue, " set on fire of hell." James 3 : 6. Such 
heats are not from above, but are earthly, sensual, 
devilish ; we freeze still, while we thus fry ; our pre- 
ternatural heats have extinguished the supernatural. 
how little kindly warmth do we find in our 
spirits! Do we feel our hearts working upwards, 
ascending in our flames ? "We all pretend to love ; 
but consider, are our hearts going out in their 
strength after God ? We wish well to his name and 
interest, we wish he were ours, we wish ourselves 
his : 0, if wishing were loving, what Christians should 


we be ! But doth the kingdom of Orod suffer violence ? 
"Who are they that so run, as if they would take Grod 
by force, take heaven by force? The kingdom of 
heaven may offer violence if it will, and take us by 
force ; but how little violence does it suffer. We say 
we love God ; but is there not something, else we love 
more ? "We desire to be holy ; but is there not some- 
thing else we desire more ? 

. how few hearty friends has 'Christ in the world, 
and how little love from these few; .so little that we 
ourselves cannot tell whether it be any thing or noth- 
ing: how hard are we put to it. What a narrow 
search must we make, how many arguments must 
we consult, how many marks must we consider ere 
we can. prove we love him, and yet at last are still 
in doubt whether we love him or not. 

When we love our friends, our wives, our chil- 
dren, we can feel that we love them; when we love 
our ease, or our estates, or our liberties, we can feel 
that we love them; but our Grod r , we cannot tell 
whether we love him or not. How few of us can 
boldly make our appeal to him, "Lord, thou knowest 
that I love thee I" 

0, how many wounds does Christ receive in the 
house of his friends ; how many slights must he put 
up with; how often when he has sat down in his own 
place in the highest room, have we said to him, "(rive 
this man place, give this friend or this business place," 
. and so made him take the lower room! 

How hath he, when he has come to our doors 
Ms love has often brought him thither how often haa 


he stood, and knocked, and called, "Open to me, my 
love, my sister;" and there been made to stand and 
wait, when strangers have been brought in, and taken 
up all the rooms ! The world can never come out of 
season, but Christ must wait his seasons when he 
can find us at leisure ; if there be any other, guest 
with us, our Lord must wait: "Gro thy way for this 
time; when I have a convenient season, I will call for 
thee." How often have we agreed and appointed to 
meet the Lord at such an hour, in our chamber, in 
our closet, to have converse and communion with him 
in duty, and if any thing come in to carry us another 
way, then we cry, "I pray thee, have me excused;" 
or, if we do keep our time, and shut in ourselves with 
the Lord, and sit down to duty, what a multitude of 
thoughts presently fall a knocking at our doors ! and 
away our hearts go presently with them to the ends 
of the earth, and leave nothing but our bodies behind 
with the Lord. were our love stronger, our cries 
would be louder, and would drown the noise of these 
knockings, that they would not be heard nor heeded ; it 
would command silence to every impertinent thought : 
" I charge you, daughters, that you stir not, that 
you disturb not my Beloved and my soul." More love 
would command our attendance upon the work of 
the Lord, would gird up the loins of the mind, and 
gather in all its scattered messengers, saying, " Come, 
all ye powers of my soul, come and do your homage, 
come and help in the service of my Grod." 

0, at what distance are we content to live from 
the Lord, sometimes for many days together ! Our 



souls and our G-od are grown strange, and yet we can 
be merry and quiet ; we can be without the presence 
of God, and yet never miss it ; not a smile from his 
face, nor a look of love from us to him, and yet no 
trouble follows. The sun may be eclipsed, or under 
a cloud, and yet no darkness upon our spirits ; we do 
not walk in darkness when we have no light ; sorrow 
and sadness is as far from us, as God is from us ; we 
can warm ourselves at our own fires, and rejoice in 
the light of our own sparks, as if these were the sun. 
We can do as well in a mist, as in the sunshine ; day 
and night are both alike to us. The children of the 
bride-charnber do not fast, but can feast and make 
merry when the bridegroom is taken from them ; their 
carnal contentments they can make a shift with to 
supply the room of their Lord. Can we not sometimes 
go where our Lord feeds, and never find him go to 
pray, or go to hear, or go to a sacrament, and the 
Lord never meet us there, and yet can return well 
enough satisfied? YvTien we thus want communion 
with G-od, and can want it, where is our love? what 
love is that which can so well bear the absence of its 
beloved? ."Call me no more Naomi, pleasant, but 
call me Marah, bitter ; ' I went out full, but I return 
empty' full of grace, full of joy, because full of the 
Lord ; but behold, all is gone, my husband is lost, my 
God is departed from me. Call me no more Naomi, 
but call me Marah, for the Almighty has dealt bit- 
terly with me, has hid his face from me: for these 
things I weep ; mine eyes, mine eyes run down with 
tears, because the Comforter that should relieve my 

Heaven Opened. 9 


soul is far from me :" such are the tears of love for 
her absent Lord. 

0, how little conscience is there made of bestowing 
that on the Lord which we have "bestowed on him ! 
We give, and take back ; we pretend to have given 
all to God, but are we not often taking away what 
we have given, and bestowing it elsewhere ? Love 
would have all running unto God ; but 0, what waste 
is there made of our time and other talents, which, 
were they well husbanded, would come to much, and 
be given to the Lord ! When so many days and hours 
run away, and no account is taken of them on what or 
on whom they are consumed ; when our eyes and our 
ears and hands and tongues, which were made for 
God, permit the devil and lust so often to have the 
using of them; when dress and appetite and friends 
and companions must carry away what should be 
spent on God and souls; when what should be allowed 
for religion and charity must be at the disposal of 
pride, prodigality, and gluttony; when our prayers, 
our fasting, our preaching, hearing, and all our duties, 
must become sacrifices to our lust; when our idols 
are suffered to devour the sacrifices of the Lord; when 
our pride and fleshly ends must have the offering and 
eating of our sacrifices, must make our prayers, and 
preach our sermons, and keep our fasts, and give our 
alms, and wear the credit and honor of them as its 
own crown when God is thus robbed, and we let the 
thief run away with all, and he is never pursued or 
questioned, where is our love? 

0, how little pleasure do we take in the Lord! 


"What a weariness is it to us to wait upon him; how 
glad are we when we come "back from the house of 
the Lord ! When we rise from our knees, and come 
out of our closets ; when the sabbaths are gone, and 
the new moons are over, and we make our returns 
from heaven to earth, how much work have we to 
keep our hearts near the Lord, how do they slink 
away ere we are aware. And while we are in his 
presence, how seldom do we rejoice in his pres- 
ence ! What hungry meals, what meagxe feasts do 
we make before the Lord ! We relish not his dain- 
ties; his wine is but lees, his marrow and his fat 
things are but leanness to our souls. A little love 
would sweeten every drop, would season every morsel 
that comes from his table would make our very fasts 
to be pleasant bread. We feed upon the dish or the 
trencher, and not the meat ; on the bone, and not the 
marrow: ordinances, and the external exercises of 
religion, are but the bone, or the shell, or the dish it 
is God that is the kernel, the marrow, and fatness. 
How little communion have we with the Lord, in 
our approaches to him ; and how little sweetness do 
we find in the little we have ! Communion is the 
pleasure of love, and love is the sweetness of com- 
munion. "Now I am where I would be. 0, how 
amiable are thy tabernacles ! Very pleasant art thou 
to me, Lord ;" this is the voice of love. Had we 
more love, we should be more spiritual ; and spiritual 
things would be more grateful to spiritual hearts. 
Divine love is like the fire, it rarifies and changes 
hearts into its own likeness, and then there is happi- 


ness. 0, we are carnal, and that is enough to evi- 
dence that there is little of the love of (rod aMding 
in us. 

Consider these things, and you will see that love 
is a rarity there is hut little .true love in the world. 
prize the love of God ; let its want make it prized : 
shall it he so rare, and yet so cheap? prize it, and 
press on after it. 

What do these hearts helow? are they not still 
below? so cold, such clods of clay, and yet ahove! 
so carnal, so sensual, and yet in heaven ! so hungry, 
and so greedy in sucking the juice of this earth, in 
taking its pleasures ; so husy in digging out the 
wealth of the earth, and searching for its treasures, 
and yet not here ! How canst thou say I am walking 
with the (rod of glory, when thou art still worship- 
ping the gods of the earth? How canst thou say, 
This heart is risen, it is not here ; when it may "be 
said to thee, "Behold the place where it lies?" it is 
still in the field, in the ridges and furrows thereof; 
it is still in the mines, in the heart of the earth : see 
the place where it lies. "We sow our hearts with our 
seed ; we send them down to dig in the heart of the 

But what do these hearts below? Gret you up, 
get you up ; leave nothing hut the mantle here, your 
hodies earth to earth, dust to dust. Come, heave 
these souls heavenward ; let them take wing and he 
gone. that I had the wings of a dove, that I might 
fly up, and he at rest; he lower than ever "by humil- 
ity, hut in love be on high. 


Behold those cords of love that are let down in 
every ordinance, in every providence ; there is a cord 
let down to gather up hearts ; hearken to those calls 
of love, Come up hither, come up hither. "We come, 
Lord, thou hidst us come : lend us thy hand, and 
lift us up. 

Come, Christians; come, let us be happy; if. we 
love, we are happy : come, let us rejoice ; if we love, 
we joy : come, let us live ; we die, we die, while we 
linger on this earth: if we love, we live; let us live, 
and let our life he love; let our works be labors 
of love, ,our sufferings seals of love, our sorrows the 
sorrows of love, our wounds love's scars, our prayers 
the cries of love, our praises love songs to our Lord 
and God. Let every duty, every exercise, let every 
member, every power, let our bodies, let our souls be 
love's sacrifices ; let the Lord see love in all our ways, 
as we see it in all his. 

Canst thou not love? look till thou canst; look 
up to thy God, send up thy thoughts thither ; let thy 
meditations be of him ; these will not be long before 
the throne ere they fetch up thy heart. Look on thy 
Jesus, behold his hands and his feet, come and put 
thy finger into the print of the nails, and thrust thy 
heart into his side, and there let it lie till thou feel it 
warm. Look up to thy Jesus ; lift up a prayer : 
"Lord, let me love thee : if thou lovest, let me love 
thee : I will seek, till I can see ; let me see, till I can 
love. What have I here, Lord ? My all is with thee, 
my help, my hope, my treasure, my life is hid with 
Christ in Grod. And yet behold, this all is nothing to 


me, while my heart is no more with thee; take it, 
Lord, take it up ; where my treasure is, there let my 
heart he also." 

Doubting Christian, who, because thou lovest so 
little, fearest thou lovest not at all, cry for more, but 
be thankful for what thou hast; be ashamed thou 
lovest no more, but be not dismayed. Thou corn- 
plainest thou canst not love (rod ; but dost thou love 
his image, his saints, his word, his works, his ways ? 
"While thou sayest thou lovest not God, dost thou love 
godliness ? If thou canst not love, canst thou grieve, 
canst thou lament after him ? Hast thou chosen, dost 
thou hang upon, and trust in the Lord ? If thou canst 
not love, canst thou fear and follow the Lord ? If he 
be not sensibly in thy affection, is he in thy thoughts, 
in thy mouth, in thine eye ? Is he thine aim and thy 
scope ? Does thy course bend towards him ? If so, 
comfort thy heart in these things ; thou mayest see, 
though thou canst not feel, that thou lovest. 




" I WILL put my fear in their hearts, that they 
shall not depart from me." Jer. 32 : 40. In unfold- 
ing this topic, I shall proceed by these steps : I shall 
show, 1. That the Lord Gfod is a dreadful (rod; 
2. That the Lord hath put the dread of himself upon 
the hearts of all the earth ; 3. That yet by sin the 
heart of man is much hardened from the fear of the 
Lord; 4. That Grod will recover his honor, and again 
put his fear into the hearts of his people ; and, 
5. What this fear of the Lord is that he will put into 

I. THE LORD G-OD is A DREADFUL GTOD : he is dread- 
ful in the excellency and glory of his majesty. " Shall 
not his excellency make you afraid, and his dread fall 
upon you?" Job 13:11. His power is dreadful: 
" Fear ye not me? saith the Lord. "Will ye not trem- 
ble at my presence, which have placed the sand for 
the bound of the sea by a perpetual decree, that it 
cannot pass it: and though the waves thereof toss 
themselves, yet can they not prevail ; though they 
roar, yet can they not pass over it ?" Fear ye not me? 
saith the Lord. He that did this, what can he not 
do ? His wrath is a dreadful wrath : " At his wrath 
the earth shall tremble, and the nations shall not be 


able to abide his indignation." Jer. 10 : 10. Yea, his 
holiness is dreadful, his truth, his righteousness, and 
all his name. " That thou mayest fear this glorious 
and fearful name, the Lord thy G-od." Deut. 28 : 58. 
The Lord G-od is a dreadful G-od. 

II. The Lord God hath put THE DREAD OP HIMSELF 


only, but the worst of the sons of men. " I am a 
great King, saith the Lord ; and my name is dreadful 
among the heathen." This dread of the Lord breaks 
forth upon them, 

1. From the impress of God upon the natures of 
all men. As the law, so the being of G-od is written 
in their hearts ; he has his witness in their con- 
sciences. If the atheists of the earth could answer 
all the arguments from without proving that there 
is a God ; yet they can never confute their own con- 
sciences. If the works of Grod do not, their reins shall 
instruct them ; if they will not see, whether they will 
or not they shall feel, that there is a God ; and where- 
ever God is felt, he is feared : even when their mouth 
speaketh proud things, their heart shall meditate ter- 
ror ; and when nothing else alarms them, they shall 
"be a terror to themselves. 

2. It is increased by the great works of G : od, his 
wonders that he doeth in the world his thunder and 
his hail, Ms wind and his waves; his earthquakes 
make' many an earthquake in hearts. 

3. It is further heightened by his judgments, 
which he executeth on the earth. The judgments of 
God, are God revealing himself from heaven against 


the ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, and 
strike most terror, 1. "When he smites suddenly, and 
makes quick work with sinners : as when Herod was 
smitten by an angel of Grod, Nadab and Abihu con- 
sumed by fire from God, immediately upon their sin. 
Sudden strokes shake secure hearts. 2. "When he 
executes strange judgments, and makes a new thing: 
as in the case of Korah and his company, he made 
the earth to open her mouth upon them, and swallow 
them up ; as he made the flies, and the frogs, and the 
lice, to be the executioners of his wrath on Pharaoh. 

3. When he executes great wrath for little sins, as 
men account them ; as in the case of Uzzah, whom 
he struck dead for but touching the ark when it shook. 

4. When he exercises great severity on his own people, 
on those that are near him. If he spareth not his sons, 
what will he do with his enemies ? " If these things be 
done in the green tree, what shall be clone in the dry ?" 

4. Yet further, men's dread is increased by their 
consciousness of guilt, and of their being bound over 
to the judgment to come. The sin of Judah is writ- 
ten with a pen of iron, with the point of a diamond it 
is graven upon the tables of their heart. The sin of 
Judah is written ; yea, and the sin of the Grentiles 
also: "Their conscience also bearing witness, and 
their thoughts the meanwhile accusing." Rom. 2 : 15. 
And where their sin is written, there their judgment 
is written, which even nature itself will teach doth 
inevitably follow upon sin ; and this is the great dread 
that is come upon them. The very mention of judg- 
ment to come, made Felix tremble at the face of a 



poor prisoner. This is the terror of the Lord mentioned 
by the apostle : "We must all appear before the judg- 
ment-seat. Knowing therefore the terror of the Lord, 
we persuade men." 2 Cor. 5 : 10, 11. Death is said 
to be the king of terrors ; and this is the terror of 
death, "After that the judgment." All these, the 
impress of G-od upon their hearts, the wonders of G-od 
in the world, the vengeance of G-od executed on sin, 
the sense of guilt and of a judgment to come, do preach 
to the consciences of sinners that "it is a fearful thing 
to fall into the hands of the living God." 

III. Yet by sin the heart of man is MUCH HARDENED 
from the fear of the Lord. Sin blinds the eye and 
hardens the heart, brings into danger and puts oat of 
fear. Who in such danger, and yet who so bold as 
the blind sinner ? When the understanding is dark- 
ened, the next word we read is, "Past feeling." Eph. 
4:19. There is included in the very nature of sin a 
slighting of God ; and by once slighting we learn to 
slight him more. Slight the command, and you will 
quickly slight the curse. Laugh at duty, and it will 
not be long ere you laugh at fear. And when sin 
hath thus hardened, God will also harden ; he lets 
the sinner alone, suspends his judgments, smites the 
sinner with judicial blindness, and gives him up to a 
reprobate mind. Rom. 1 : 28. And when once they 
come to this, then hell is broke loose: for what fol- 
lows? "Being filled with all unrighteousness, forni- 
cation, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness," and 
what not. Rom. 1 : 29. " The transgression of the 
wicked saith within my heart, that there is no fear 


of G-od "before his eyes." Psa. 36 : 1. "When Abraham 
had such a thought, " Surely the fear of G-od is not 
in this place," G-en. 20 : 11, what did he think was 
there ? Murder, adultery, and all manner of villany. 
" "What sawest thou among us, that thou hast done 
this thing ?" "What hurt, what evil didst thou see 
among us ? What evil ! Evil enough to make me 
afraid : I thought the fear of G-od was not here, and 
there needs no more to make me afraid. Say of any 
person, The fear of God is not in this man, and you 
therein say, The devil is in him ; here dwells sin, and 
all manner of wickedness. Say of any place, The 
fear of God is not in this place ; and if you find it an 
Egypt or Sodom for abominations, you will not won- 
der. " The fear of the Lord is clean," Psa. 19 : 9, 
that is, it cleanseth. Where this is not, every unclean 
thing may dwell. The reason why this world is such 
a world as it is, such a wicked world, such a treach- 
erous, deceitful, ungodly world why there is so little 
faith, or truth, or mercy, or charity, or sobriety, is, 
because there is so little of the fear of G-od. Sin has 
cast out fear, and this has brought forth sin in abun- 
dance. The law is nothing, threatenings are nothing, 
conscience is nothing, G-od is nothing to men, because 
he is not their fear. Wickedness is as righteousness ; 
villany, as honesty ; prodigality, debauchery, as tem- 
perance and sobriety; yea, wickedness faces the 
sun, it lifts up the head, it wears the garland ; it 
paints itself virtue, generosity, gallantry, the beauty 
and ornament of the world, wherever the fear of G-od 
is departed. 


God may promise, threaten, command : "Hearken 
to my voice, turn at my reproofs, cast away your 
transgressions. Awake from your wine, "be chaste, 
sober, humble ; let your merriment be turned into 
mourning, your jollity into heaviness. Remember 
your Creator, remember your souls; why will you 
die ? turn and live." God may speak thus once, and 
twice, and ten times, but is not regarded ; his words 
have no weight, his counsels have no credit, his warn- 
ings are of no value with hardened, fearless hearts. 
If the devil speak but once, he is heard ; if lust speak 
but once, it is obeyed ; if a proud companion speak 
but once, he is followed ; while the word of the God 
of glory is made a reproach and a scorn. 0, the 
intolerable contempt that is poured out upon the Most 
High by men that fear not God ! " Make thy prom- 
ises, and give thy gifts to whom thou wilt ; give grace, 
and. give glory where thou pleasest : the world for me ; 
my pleasures, my honors, my liberty for me ; this 
world for me, look after the other who will : let the 
Lord threaten, let the day of the Lord come; let it 
hasten that we may see it ; let the Almighty do his 
worst, 1 will not hearken nor turn." This is the blas- 
phemy of hardened, fearless hearts. 

IV. God will recover HIS HONOR in the hearts of 
his people. He will put his fear in their hearts: 
while others are hardened, they shall tremble ; while 
others kick, they shall stoop ; whoever despise him, 
of these will he be had in honor. 

V. WHAT THIS FEAR OP THE LORD is, that he will 
put into their hearts. The fear of God is sometimes 


taken in Scripture as comprehending all religion. 
Job was said, chap. 1, to be a man fearing God, that 
is, a godly man ; but in this sense I shall not here 
speak of it. Sometimes it is presented more strictly 
as a distinct grace, distinguished from faith, love, 
hope, and other graces of the Spirit. And being taken 
in this sense, there are these two things included in it : 
A reverence of God, and an abhorrence of evil for 
God's sake. 

1. A reverence of God. To fear God, is to have 
the awe of God abiding upon the heart to be under 
a sense of the majesty and glory of the Lord, shining 
forth in all his attributes, especially in his holiness 
and omniscience : the glory of his holiness, and the 
sense of such a holy eye upon the soul strikes it with 
dread and consternation. This is expressed in Scrip- 
ture by sanctifying the Lord in the heart. " I will 
be sanctified in them that come nigh me." Lev. 10 : 3. 
"Sanctify the Lord of hosts himself ; and let him be 
your fear, and let him be your dread." Isaiah 8 : 13. 
There is mention in Scripture of a sanctifying of God 
and a justifying of God. As God doth justify and 
sanctify his people, so they are to justify and sanctify 
God. These two, the justifying and sanctifying of 
God, though they be much the same, yet have some 
difference between them. To sanctify God, is to rev- 
erence him in our hearts, and to represent him in the 
glory of his holiness before men. To justify God, 
supposes a sinful judging and foolish charging of God 
in the hearts of men, and is our vindicating him from 
such charges. "Is God righteous?" say they; "how 


is it then that he is so partial in his dealings with the 
righteous and unrighteous ; that he deals worse with 
those who fear him than with those who fear him 
not? Is God good ? How is it then that he is so hard 
in imposing and inflicting such hard things upon his 
own ? Is God true ? How is it then that he fails his 
people so often, when he hath said, I will never leave 
them nor forsake them? Our flesh hath failed, yea, 
and our heart hath failed, yea, and our God hath often 
failed us too ; we have often called, and have had no 
answer ; we have often trusted, and have had no de- 
liverer." Not so, we reply ; yet God is righteous, yet 
God is good, yet God is true ; he has not been un- 
righteous, he has not been a hard master, he has not 
failed nor forsaken. This is to justify God. 

Our justifying God hath some points of resem- 
blance with God's justifying us. God's justification 
of us consists in his not imputing sin to us, hut ac- 
cepting us as righteous; and our justifying of God, 
consists in our not imputing evil to him, but acknow- 
ledging him to be true, just, and good. God has jus- 
tified me from my sins, and that is enough to pro- 
claim him good and faithful, whatever his other deal- 
ings be. Let him afflict me, let him chastise me, 
since he will not judge me nor condemn me with the 
world. God has justified himself in my conscience. 
I have found that the Lord is gracious, I have found 
that God is faithful ; he has said he will not, and I 
must say he does not, forsake me. He has not failed, 
when he has most failed me ; when he has been far- 
thest from me, he has even then been a present help 


in trouble. He has answered, when he has been most 
silent ; he has been most good, when he has teen most 
hard. I have never found more sweet, than in his 
bitter cup. I must judge myself, not my God : I have 
sinned, I have sinned against him, and therefore I 
.must justify him when he speaketh, and clear him 
when he judgeth. Hold thy peace, querulous heart, 
be silent all the earth before the Lord, for truly God 
is good to Israel, even to them that are of a clean 
heart. There are few among the worst of sinners, 
but, if conscience might be suffered to speak, would 
. justify God. It is lust that quarrels, not conscience. 
" It is vain," says lust/ "to serve the Lord, and what 
profit is there to keep his ordinances ? His ways are 
unequal and hard ; his promise fails; take one time 
with another, oftener than it is made good. Who is 
it that plagues and disappoints and crosses and vexes 
us ? This evil is of the Lord : why should I wait on 
the Lord any longer ? Nay, whom does he punish 
more than those that are nearest him ? Who have 
sorrow, who have trouble in the flesh, who are re- 
proached, scorned, hunted up and down the world, 
but these ? This they may thank God for, and their 
following him. It is better being the servant of sin, 
than the servant of Christ." Thus lust blasphemes. 
But speak, conscience. Is God unrighteous? Is God 
false to his word? Are the pleasures of sin better 
than the gain of godliness? Have the children of 
this world made a wiser choice than the children of 
light ? Speak, sinner, let thy conscience speak, wheth- 
er it be thus or not. God has not left himself with- 


out witness in the hearts 'of sinners, much less in the 
hearts of his saints ; when they do speak, their hearts 
speak good of his name. But this by the way. 

To return to the matter in hand. To sanctify 
God, is especially to reverence him in the heart to 
have such a high and holy and honorable esteem of 
him as commands an awe upon the heart ; and that, 

(1.) At all- times. "My son, be thou in the fear 
of the Lord all the day long." "My son:" it is not 
only for slaves, but for sons to fear.- "Be thou in the 
fear of the Lord :" it is not only, Let the fear of the 
Lord be in thee, habitually in thy heart, but actuate 
and stir up this holy fear, keep up a holy awe, a deep 
sense of God always upon thee ; let the fear of the 
Lord be before thine eyes; be possessed and swal- 
lowed up of this fear "all the day long;" wherever 
thou art, with whomsoever thou hast to do, remember 
thou hast still to do with God. A Christian should 
stand always as before the tribunal ; every day should 
be as the last day, the day of judgment to him. " So 
speak ye, and so do as those that shall be judged." 
James 2 : 12. The Judge stands at the door, yea, and 
thou mayest see him through every window, yea, 
through every wall every wall is a window through 
which God may see and be seen. A Christian, when 
he is as he should be, cannot wink God out of sight ; 
can look nowhere but he sees that eye which strikes 
an awe upon his spirit. 

This abiding reverence of God, what an influence 
will it have upon the whole course ! We shall then 
serve God acceptably ; when we fear him, we shall 


please him: "That we may serve God acceptably, 
with reverence and godly fear." "We shall then serve 
(rod universally, in every thing. "When we fear, we 
shall watch unto every duty, against every sin. " This 
do and live, for I fear God;" Gen. 42 : 18, said Joseph 
to his "brethren ; as if he had said, Do not you fear to 
find falsehood or any evil-dealing from me, for I fear 
God ; I dare not he false to you ; you may trust me, 
you may take my word, for I fear God. "We shall 
then walk before the Lord steadily. "When we fear,,,-, 
we shall be firm, and hold fast in an even frame and 
course. Pear will be our ballast ; while love fills our 
sails, fear will ballast our vessel. How are slight 
and frothy spirits tossed up and down whither do 
they not wander ! How many hearts and faces and 
frames have they every day! What contradictions 
are they to themselves ! The reverence of God upon 
them would fix them and hold them in a more even 
and equal poise. "We should then serve the Lord 
more honorably. When we fear, we shall show forth 
the character of God before the world ; the more we 
have of the reverence of God, the more have we of his 
holiness. The presence of a Christian walking in the 
fear of the Lord, is as the presence of God ; the rev- 
erence of God upon his heart easts a beam of divine 
majesty into his face, and oftentimes begets an awe 
and reverence of him in the hearts of the worst of 
sinners ; they reverence, even while they revile and 
persecute him. 

Of John the Baptist, who was a man of a just, 
holy, and austere life, it is said that Herod feared 


Him and observed him. Mark 6 : 20. The austerity 
and holiness of his life commanded respect from a 
Herod's heart. Such Christians' ways are a convic- 
tion, and their very countenances are a rebuke to the 
wanton world ; they speak with authority, they ex- 
hort with authority, they reprove with authority; and 
sin often hides itself from them, even as from the face 
of God. 

(2.) Especially is this awe seen in our drawing' 
nigh to God: "God is greatly to be feared in the 
assembly of the saints, and to be had in reverence of 
all them that are about him." Psa.,89 :.7. " I will 
be sanctified in them that come nigh me." Lev. 10 : 3. 
He that fears God, trembles at the word of God ; and 
God loves he should. " To this man will I look, even 
to him that trembleth at my word." Isa. 66 : 2. That 
which makes him tremble is, that he sees the word 
carrying upon it the holiness and the authority of 

He reads the word as the epistle of God sent 
down to the world his epistle commendatory, that 
sets forth the excellence and the glory of God, and 
his letters mandatory, that charge subjection and obe- 
dience upon him : he takes every word as coming 
from the mouth of the Holy One of Israel ; he lies 
prostrate before the Lord ; his soul bows the knee, 
his heart falls down at the feet of the Almighty. The 
more the word is considered as the word of God, the 
more awe it works upon him. Every look he casts 
upon his Bible, is a looking into heaven. He that 
fears God, fears when he comes to worship, reverences 


his sanctuary: "In thy fear. -will I -worship." Psa.5:7. 
That which works this fear is, that he looks upon the 
;Uuties and' ordinances of worship as the institutions 
of God and his application unto God. 

"This," he says, "is that which the Lord hath 
sanctified: .behold his image and superscription; here 
he has directed me to wait for him; here he has 
appointed to meet my soul; now I am going up to 
the mount of God ; the mount of God is everywhere 
where the worship of God is. My soul, where art 
thou ? I am before the Lord of the whole earth. Put 
off thy shoes from thy feet, the place whereon thou 
standest is holy ground. Tarn "before the high and 
holy One, the God of all the earth ; and upon trans- 
actions of eternal consequence, to do my homage to 
the everlasting King, to kneel before the Lord my 
Maker, to kiss the golden sceptre, to beg my life at 
his hands, to 'behold his goings in his sanctuary; his 
wisdom, and his mercy, and' his goodness are all pass- 
ing before me. How dreadful is this place ! This is 
none other but the house of God and the gate of 
heaven. How dreadful is this word ! This is none 
other but the word of God. How dreadful is this 
ordinance ! "This is none other but the door of glory. 
Tremble, thou heart, at the presence of the Lord, at 
the presence of the God of Jacob." 

2. Abhorrence of evil for the Lord's sake, is the 
other part of the fear of God. Here we shall con- 
sider its object and its ground. 

(1.) The object of this abhorrence in general is 
evil: "Abhor that which is evil, cleave to that which 


is good." Rom. 12 : 9. Good is the object of love, evil 
of fear. Evil is twofold, present, or to come. The 
former is the object of grief, the latter of fear. Par- 
ticularly, the objects of this abhorrence are, the wrong 
to (rod, the loss of God. 

First, the wrong to God. The great and only 
wrong to God is sin. Sin is the turning away of the 
heart from God. The great thing in all the world 
which God respects and requires as his own, is the 
heart : " My son, give me thy heart. Keep thy heart 
with all diligence." Prov. 4:23. Keep thy heart; 
that is, keep it for me keep it clean for God, and 
keep it safe for God ; see that it be not denied nor 
carried away. When the heart is gone, all is gone 
with it. If the world has got men's hearts, if Satan 
. has got their hearts, let them take all else, saith God ; 
let me have their heart or nothing: they are sure to 
have all, that have the heart. The heart, wherever it 
goes, carries all with it. Where we bestow our hearts, 
we bestow all that we have. Sin is the turning away 
of the heart. This is the very nature of sin, the 
heart's departing from the living God. Heb. 3 : 12. 
And therefore this is the great wrong to God. There 
is but one thing in the world that God regards ; and 
this sin steals away. 

Sin is the insurrection and rebellion of the heart 
against God ; it turns from him, and turns against 
him ; it runs over to the camp of the enemy, and 
there takes up arms against God. Sin is a running 
from God, and a fighting against God ; it would spoil 
the Lord of all the jewels of his crown. It opposes 


the sovereignty of God. A sinful heart would set up 
itself in God's throne, it would be king in his stead, 
and have the command of all. Sinners would be 
their own gods : " Our lips are our own, who is Lord 
over us ?" G-od shall not be God where sin is risen up 
as lord. It assaults the wisdom of God. Vain man 
would be wise, wiser than his Maker. It charges the 
Lord with folly, and proclaims itself the only wise. 
Sinners pretend to know how to choose for themselves, 
and order things to their advantage, better than God. 
" If God would let me alone to myself, to be at my 
own ordering, it should quickly be better with me. 
If every thing might be with me as I would have it, 
my case would be well mended from what it is, now 
that every thing must go as God will have it." All 
our complainings at Providence, all our murmurings 
and discontents at our lot, are our heart charging 
the Lord with folly. It casts reproach on the holi- 
ness of God, it disparages the goodness of God ; it 
abuses his mercy, violates his justice, despises his 
power. In sum, it disgraces the throne of Ms glory, 
lays his honor in the dust, and sets the Almighty 
below the lowest of his creatures. 

Every companion shall be respected more than 
God ; every pleasure shall be loved more than God ; 
the devil shaj.1 be feared more than God. "Where is 
his love ? "Where is his fear ? Where is his honor ? 
Nay, where were the Lord himself, might sin have its 
way? Sin alone wrongs God, and this wrong is the 
especial, object of the saints' abhorrence. A gracious 
heart would do no wrong, lie. would not wrong his 


neighbor, he would not wrong his servant, his enemy, 
no, not his "beast that he possesses. " But 0, should 
I wrong my God ? Has he ever done me any wrong ? 
Has he not been just to me ; yea, has he not been 
ever good to me ? Kind, pitiful, patient, bountiful ? 
Who has fed me, clothed me, kept me, succored 
me, comforted me ? "What friend have I hi all the 
world, what father, what portion, what hope, but 
the Lord ? What were I, what had I, but vanity, 
woe, and "misery, had I not a G-od ? I cannot wrong 
my God but I wrong myself. 'He that sinneth 
against me wrongeth his own soul.' Prov. 8 : 36. 
But if I did not, if my arrows would not recoil, could 
I go on with all this injury and suffer nothing by it : 
yet, he is GOD whom I wrong ; he is holy, he is right- 
eous, .he is good, he is glorious, he is excellent; he 
only is God, and shall I be injurious to him ? He is 
worthy of all that I have, of all the service I can do, 
of all the respect I can give, of all the praise I can 
offer up. If I had a thousand tongues, if I had a 
thousand hands, if I had a thousand lives, if I had a 
thousand souls, if I had all the earth for an offering 
to the Lord, all would be nothing to show forth the 
praise that is due unto his name, as he is God, and I 
his creature. And when I owe so much, and have 
nothing to pay, shall I steal from him ? shall I rise 
up against him? 'Wast thou not afraid to lift up 
thy hand against the Lord's anointed ?' 2 Sam. 1 : 14. 
Shall I not be afraid to lift up my hand against the 
Lord himself? to kick against God? 0, the Lord 
forbid ! What art thou, my soul ? What servest 


thou for, if thou canst not tremble, if thou dost not 
turn within me, if thou dost not start back at the 
very thought of such great wickedness ?" 

Secondly, the loss of God. As was said before, 
"He that sinneth against G-od wrongeth his own 
soul." His loss is thy loss, and more thine than his; 
though, no thanks to thee, the Lord will be no loser 
at last : when sinners have done their worst, he can 
bring his honor out of dishonor, he can recover his 
spoils out of the ashes ; if he had lost all the world, 
he had lost nothing; he is all things in himself. 
When earth and hell have spent all their malice, God 
will be God, -holy, wise, glorious, blessed for ever. 
Though such be the malignity of sin, that it would 
not give over till G-od cease to be God, yet God is 
above, too high for sin to reach ; its darts fall short 
of their mark. God cannot, G-od will not be a loser 
by all that sin can do. 

But what dost thou suffer, what dost thou lose, 
who sinnest against God ! The carnal world under- 
stand it- not, nor would make much reckoning of 
it, did they understand it. The loss of two pence 
often troubles them more than the loss of God. But 
now a Christian knows no other fear, fears no other 
loss let God be secure, and all is well. Sin will be 
a wrong to G-od, and the loss of God ; it may be a 
total and eternal loss, for aught he knows : God lost, 
the soul is lost, the kingdom lost ; this is hell, the loss 
of God. Better have no being better be a dog or 
toad, than a man without a God. Or if he be not 
utterly lost, yet to his present sense it will be all one 


as if lie had no Gfod ; his peace is lost, his comfort is 
lost, and his soul is often given up for lost, from 
whom God is departed, though hut for a season ; he 
can take pleasure in nothing, he can find rest no- 
where, whose (rod is out of sight. He knows not 
what a G-od means, who can do without him till death 
or judgment. A Christian cannot live a day without 
him; it is night, it is all dark, he knows no day, 
while the Sun is set upon him. How grievous do they 
find this loss, who have proved what it is ! "What 
wilt thou do for me, while I go childless?" "What 
can he done for me, while I go fatherless ? Here is my 
house, here are my friends and my lands ; but where 
is my God ? " My God, my God, why hast thou for- 
saken me?" "Now I see what this earth is without 
a heaven ; now I see what ease, pleasure, and carnal 
friends are, and how little they can do for me. Yea, 
what is prayer, what are sabbaths, what are sermons, 
ordinances, promises, while God looks not down ? 
I was wont to meet with God here; these glasses 
were my windows into heaven ; and then how pleas- 
ant were they to me ! Sabbaths were a delight, the 
word was a treasure, sacraments were the clusters of 
Canaan. But now, now all is dark and dry; ordi- 
nances are wells without water ; promises are breasts 
without milk ; ministers are stars without light : 
the stars are but clods, while the sun is a cloud to 
me ; woe is me, I am pained, I am pained, my head 
is sick, my heart is faint, my bowels are turned, my 
liver is poured out, the light of mine eyes is gone 
from me ; I am weary of my groanings, I am full of 


tossings and turnings, there is no soundness in my 
flesh, no rest in my bones, while my soul says daily 
to me, Where is thy God ?" And if the sense of this 
loss worketh such grief, what wonder if the hazard of 
it worketh fear '? Now sin divides, breaks the peace, 
makes (rod and the soul two sin alienates, produces 
a distance and estrangement between God and the 
soul. That soul can either not see him at all, or not 
as a friend, whom sin has drawn away. Sin will 
either cloud the face of God, or clothe him with fury ; 
will cause him either to turn his back upon the soul, 
or set his face against it. He who knows what it is 
to enjoy God will dread his loss ; he who has seen his 
face will fear to see his back ; he loves, and therefore 
would not lose. 

(2.) The ground and reason of this abhorrence is 
twofold God's jealousy, and his people's ingenuous- 

First, Gods jealousy. "The Lord thy God is a 
jealous God." Exodus 20 : 5. The same arguments 
which the Lord uses to keep up and enforce his au- 
thority upon the consciences of his people, the same 
arguments they do and ought to make use of, to press 
it upon themselves. " I am a jealous God," saith the 
Lord. It is true, saith conscience, the Lord is jealous ; 
and therefore take heed to thyself, soul, how thou 
fallest into his hands. "It is a fearful thing to fall 
into the hands of the living God." 

The jealousy of the Lord includes in it his tender- 
ness of his honor, and terribleness in case of dishonor. 

His tenderness of his honor. The .honor of God 

Heaven Opened, 1 


is very tender to Mm, lie will not lose a tittle of it : 
"My glory will I not give to another, neither my 
praise to graven images." Isa. 42 : 8. I will not, and 
look you to it that you do not, give away my glory, 
"What was the reason that (rod dealt so severely with 
Eli and with Herod ? What was Eli's sin? Why, 
that he gave away the honor of God to his sons, 
"Thou honorest thy sons above me." 1 Samuel, 
2 : 29. He was so tender to his sons that, though 
they were become sons of Belial, and dealt so wickedly 
"before the Lord, yet they must he dealt gently with : 
"Nay, my sons, it is no good thing that I hear of you." 
Such a slight reproof must serve in so dreadful a case ; 
he was afraid to displease his sons by a sharper re- 
proof; this the Lord interprets as an honoring of his 
sons above him. Indulgent parents, stand and trem- 
ble, you that can see your children sin, and let them 
go with a "Nay, my sons, it is not good," a slight or 
cold reproof; this is no other but your honoring your 
sons above your God. What was Herod's sin ? Acts 
12:22, 23. That he gave nofGod the glory. He 
made an eloquent oration, and the people thereupon 
made him a 'god: "The voice of a god, and not of a 
man ;" and he accepted the applause ; and thereupon 
the angel of the Lord srnote him, that he died. Eli 
sinned in giving the honor of God to his sons, and 
Herod in taking it to himself ; but God taught them 
both how clear his glory is to him. 

The jealousy of the Lord also includes his terrible- 
ness in case of his dishonor. The above-mentioned 
instances speak him both tender and terrible : " The 


Lord thy God is a consuming fire, even a jealous 
God." Deut. 4 : 24. The jealousy of a man is the 
rage of a man, Proverbs 6 : 34 ; and the jealousy of 
God is the rage and fury of a Gfod. "Our Grod is a 

o / 

consuming fire," that is, the fire of his jealousy. The 
wrath of a king is as the roaring of a lion; when the 
lion roareth, the beasts of the field tremble ; what 
then are the terrors of the Lord ? The threatenings 
of the Lord are terrible : "Consider this, ye that for- 
get Gfod, lest he tear you in pieces, and there be none 
to deliver." Psalm 50 : 22. " I will tread them in 
mine anger, and trample them in my fury." Isaiah 
63 : 3. His judgments are terrible, and he doeth ter- 
rible things in righteousness. Go to Jerusalem and 
mount Zion, and behold the monuments of his fury 
there. "Go to Shiloh," saith God, "and see what I 
did to it." Jer. 7 : 12. But if you go down to Sodom, 
or look down to Tophet, and behold the terrors of the 
Lord there; or if you look on particular persons, let 
Nadab and Abihu, Korah, Dathan and Abiram, Uz- 
zah, Uzziah, Herod, Ananias and Sapphira, be instances 
of his dreadfulness and severity. This jealous God, 
this terrible God, is the God whom his people fear ; 
and they fear him because he is such a jealous God. 
"Who would not fear thee, thou King of nations ? "Who 
can stand before thee when thou art angry ? My flesh 
trembleth for fear of thee, and I am afraid of thy judg- 

Christians, let none say, " This fear is not the fear 
of his children ; this be to his enemies and slaves, not 
his children ; fear ye not their fear." But are not all 


these tilings written for our learning? Is this written 
only for their sakes ? Or saith he it not also for our 
sakes ? For our sakes no doubt this is written, saith 
the apostle in another case. Consider this scripture 
full to this purpose: "Now these things were our 
examples, to the intent we should not lust after evil 
things, as they also lusted ; neither he ye idolaters, 
as were some of them ; as it is written, The people 
sat down to eat and drink, and rose up to play. Nei- 
ther let us commit fornication, as some of them com- 
mitted, and fell in one day three and twenty thousand. 
Neither let ITS tempt Christ, as some of them also 
tempted, and were destroyed of serpents. Neither 
murmur ye, as some of them also murmured, and 
were destroyed of the destroyer. Now all these 
things happened unto them for ensamples ; and they 
are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends 
of the world are come. "Wherefore let him that think- 
eth he standeth, take heed lest he fall." 1 Corin- 
thians, 10 : 6-12. 

Mark, these things are our examples. Are they 
examples to us, and not warnings too? Are they 
warnings to us, and must we not by them learn to 
fear and beware ? " Let him that thinketh he stand- 
eth, take heed lest he fall." My soul standeth in a 
sure place, my mountain is so strong that I shall 
never be moved ; I am safe enough ; I am in Christ, 
and shall not come into condemnation. But what- 
ever thou thinkest, as sure as thou thinkest thou 
standest, take heed, take heed lest thou fall ; that is, 
not only into the same sins, but into the same con- 


deranation ; that is the sense of the place. " Be- 
cause of unbelief they were broken off, and thou stand- 
est by faith. Be not high-minded, but fear." Rom. 

No need of fear ! No need of threatenings ! "What, 
may we burn half our Bible ? Can we spare so great 
a part of what is written ? Have we outgrown the 
use of judgment, as soon as ever we are partakers of 
mercy ? Have we outgrown the use of the scourge, 
as soon as ever we are entered into Christ's school ? 
Do we find all too little, mercies, threatenings, judg- 
ments, to keep our hearts in order ? And yet, is it 
more than is needful ? There are two parties in us : 
we are flesh, as well as spirit ; and must not the flesh 
be frightened ? "Will love prevail with lust ? Surely 
this slave, this son of the bondwoman, must be kept 
in awe. Has Grod no disobedient children, no rebel- 
lious children; and must these have no other discipline 
but stroldngs and dandlings ? 

Believe it, Christians, Grod will not have his ter- 
rors lost, nor lost to you ; Grod will sometimes make 
his children feel that he is a terrible God. He is ter- 
rible out of his holy place. Beware you be not pre- 
sumptuous children. There is a threefold presump- 
tion. 1. A presumption upon temptation, in confi- 
dence of strength. Some unwary souls, not knowing 
what spirit they are of, supposing themselves too hard 
for the devil, will be venturing within Ms reach, as 
if they would dare him to try his skill and power ; 
who, having forgotten this prayer, "Lead us not into 
temptation," put themselves into the tempter's hand : 


the falls of such will teach them to understand their 
folly. 2. Presumption on sin, in confidence of mercy. 
And that either in confidence of mercy already ob- 
tained "I am in Christ, and my sin shall not sepa- 
rate me from him ; whatever I do, I have a pardon 
in my hand:" or in hope of mercy at last "I have 
to do with a merciful G-od, and therefore may ven- 
ture on a little further ; hereafter I will repent, and 
then I need not doubt of remission." 3. Presump- 
tion on sin, in contempt of mercy and justice : " I 
will have my sin, though I never find mercy ; I will 
have my will and my way, and run the hazard of 
what follows; I will take my course, come on me 
what will." 

This last sort presume to sin in contempt of mer- 
cy and judgment; they are so drunken with their 
sensual delights, and so given over to the hardness of 
their hearts, that they neither value mercy nor fear 
wrath. "What do you talk to me of mercy and 
judgment to come ? Give me my pleasures, and my 
liberties, and rny mirth, and my money : think not to 
make me such a fool, to let go the pleasure and com- 
fort of my life for I know not what uncertain fears 
or hopes." Such as these have one foot already in 
hell. If it be not yet thus with thee, thou darest not 
contemn either mercy or judgment ; also beware thou 
be not presumptuous in the former sense. Be not 
bold upon temptations ; think not that thou art strong 
to overcome a temptation, when thou art so weak as 
not to fear it ; he that fears not a temptation, under- 
stands not it, or himself. But especially beware thou 


presume not upon sin, in consequence of mercy. Grow 
not overbold upon love or patience. Say not, "God 
loves me, therefore I may be bold to take the more 
liberty, the less care, the less watchfulness, the less 
fear, because so much love." Spit in thy Father's 
face, because he weeps over thy neck ! Smite him 
on the face, because thou hopest he will not strike 
again ! Tear his bowels, because they are so tender 
towards thee! Be froward, stubborn, wanton, and 
idle, because thou hast found him so indulgent ! 

Christians, consider whether such wickedness hath 
not sometimes been found in some of our hearts. But 
take heed ; you will find, though he be a tender, yet 
he will not be a weak, fond father ; where he loves, 
he will be feared. Some as bold and as confident as 
you, have felt to their cost what it is to abuse pa- 
tience and kindness ; his arrows in their hearts, his 
terrors in their souls, have made them know that the 
God of love is a terrible God. And look to it; if thou 
yet wilt adventure, wilt be a wanton still, froward, or 
idle, or heedless still, he will either lash thee into a 
better frame, or cast thee out as no child of his, but a 
bastard and rebel. If thou wilt not take warning by 
others, take heed lest he make thee a warning to them 
which shall come after. 

Christians know, that though God be tender of his 
saints, yet he is jealous for his name ; he regards them 
as the apple of his eye, but not above the least tittle 
of his honor. As God will have us love our neighbor, 
so he will love his child but as himself: first himself, 
and then his child. He will not abate an iota of his 


glory to save a world. As little offences done to Ms 
little ones, so little sins allowed by them, are as mill- 
stones about the neck. If they allow it in themselves, 
yet heaven and earth shall pass away and fall to noth- 
ing, ere he allow it in them. God will not, and there- 
fore his children dare not indulge themselves in little 
sins. They therefore fear, because he whom they 
serve is a jealous Grod. 

The other ground of Christians' abhorrence of evil 
is their own ingenuousness. This fear is from love, 
and is most properly the fear of children. Children 
may fear because God is jealous, and so do slaves ; 
but only children because G-od is good. Children 
fear because they love ; slaves fear, although they 
hate. Children fear to be unworthy ; slaves, only to be 
unhappy and miserable. There is nothing more con- 
trary to an ingenuous nature, than to abuse goodness 
and kindness ; to abuse goodness hath as black an as- 
pect with such a nature, as to provoke wrath. They 
"shall fear the Lord and his goodness in the latter 
days." Hosea 3 : 5. But how can goodness be the 
object of fear? "We fear evil, and not good. The 
meaning is, they shall fear to wrong or abuse good- 
ness. They shall fear to wrong the Lord, because he 
is good, "in the latter days." These latter days that 
this promise refers to, shall be days of more grace ; 
wherein there shall be not only a more clear revela- 
tion of the goodness of God they shall know the Lord 
and his goodness but a more plentiful communica- 
tion and diffusion of the goodness of God : they shall 
love the Lord and his goodness. They shall both see 


themselves more obliged by goodness, and shall feel 
themselves more seasoned with goodness. Religion 
doth not make morose, hut more generous, free, and 
ingenuous. There is nothing more ahhorrent to an 
ingenuous spirit, than to be "base and unworthy. 
Abuse of goodness is an unworthiness, which an in- 
genuous nature abhors as death to be guilty of; it 
is its destruction, it is disingenuousness. The abuse 
of the goodness of God is great unthankfulness ; and 
unthankfulness is great disingenuousness. 

Call me unthankful, and you call me all that is 
bad. Gall me any thing else but unthankful. In- 
deed, were I all thanks, I should still be unthankful ; 
I should still be behindhand with the goodness of the 
Lord : my debt is greater than I can pay, yea, greater 
than I can acknowledge ; but shall I return evil for 
good? If I cannot pay, should I deny my debt? 
He that is unthankful, whatever (rod requires of him, 
says wickedly, This is more than I owe to thee ; God, 
I owe thee nothing, I care not for thee. Oh, this is 
dreadful to a gracious heart. 

If this be in sin for all sin is unthankfulness if 
this be sin, if this be the signification of all my neg- 
lects of God and my duty to him, then the Lord for- 
bid, whatever I suffer, that I should yield to sin. How 
shall I do this wickedness ? How shall I neglect this 
duty, and sin against God? How shall I look my 
God or my own soul in the face, should I be so un- 
worthy ? For thy sake, Lord, let me not sin against 
thee ; thou art good, thou art kind, thou art gracious, 
thou art holy; let me not be a devil: what heart, 




where a devil is not, but such goodness will charm it 
into love? Shall I sin? Shall I rebel? For thy 
sake, Lord, I will not do it ; I will not for my own 
sake; for where then shall I appear? In sinning 
against God, I sin against my own soul ; I dare not 
for my life ; sin and death, sin and hell are linked 
together ; but were it not so, might I sin and escape, 
sin and not die, yet for thy sake, Lord, I wiE not do 
it. Thou art good, good in thyself, good to me : thou 
art my God, thou art my Father ; love, care, tender- 
ness, compassion, kindness, is all that is in thy heart 
towards me : What I am, what I have, what I hope 
for, that I breathe, that I live, all is thy goodness, thy 
bounty to me. let me not rise up against the womb 
that bare me, and the paps that gave me suck. I 
would not to my child, to my servant, to my friend 
but 0, let me never to my Father, to my God return 
"evil for good, and hatred for his good- will." Let 
not this evil which I fear, ever come upon me ; put 
thy fear into my heart, Lord, that I may not sin 
against thee. 




"I WILL put my Spirit within you, and cause you 
to walk in my statutes ; and ye shall keep my judg- 
ments and do them." Ezek. 36 : 27. Obedience is of 
the heart or of the life. In this scripture, G-od under- 
takes for both. 

takes in the former words, I will put my Spirit in your 
heart. Where Satan dwells, he rules ; and where the 
Spirit of the Lord dwells, there G-od rules. The Spir- 
it in the heart is the law of the heart. Those two 
promises, " I will put my Spirit in your hearts," and 
"I will write rny law in your hearts," signify the 
same thing. The law in the heart, is the will of man 
melted into the will of G-od. The law of Grod may be 
in the mouth, and the heart a rebel ; its reception into 
the heart denotes the heart's subjection to it. This 
obedience of the heart includes, 

The opening of the heart to the word. "What wilt 
thou have me to do, Lord ? That is the voice of an 
obedient heart. Speak, Lord, command, Lord ; what 
wilt thou ? And when he speaks, whatever it be, the 
word is embraced and accepted by the heart. " Let 
my counsel be acceptable to thee." Dan. 4 : 27. The 
acceptance of the word in the heart is signified by its' 


hearkening to it. To hearken is more than to hear ; 
though they sometimes denote the same thing, yet 
ordinarily, hearing is of the ear, hearkening of the 
heart. "My people would not hearken to my voice, 
and Israel would none of me." Psalm 81 : 1.1. They 
heard what the Lord spoke, hut they would not heark- 
en ; that is, as it is there interpreted, they would none 
of the Lord. They rejected the word of the Lord 
which he spoke unto them. When the word is suf- 
fered to come in with authority, to rule in the soul 
when the heart gives up itself unto it, then it is ac- 
cepted ; there is its hearkening to it. 

This obedience likewise includes the resolution of 
the heart for the work of the Lord. " I have sworn, 
and I will perform it, that I will keep thy righteous 
judgments." Psalm 119 : 106. I have vowed, and I 
will perform; I have covenanted, and I am deter- 
mined to keep thy statutes. " The word which thou 
hast spoken to us in the name of the Lord, we will 
not do;" that is the rebellious heart: "Whatsoever 
the Lord shall speak, we will do ;" that is the obedient 

Where the heart is thus resolved to obey, this is 
that obedience which shall be accepted unto salva- 
tion. Where this resolution is, as there is opportu- 
nity there will be practice ; and where there is not 
opportunity, in Gfod's account this obedient heart will 
be accepted. This is praying, this is hearing, this is 
giving and feeding and clothing and visiting; this is 
walking circumspectly, working righteousness, show- 
ing mercy, exercising faith and patience and repent- 


ance ; this is keeping the commandments of God, and 
walking in his statutes. A heart to obey, is our 
obeying ; a heart to do, is our doing ; a heart to suffer 
on God's account, is our suffering for his name. 

But here it must he carefully noted, that though 
sincere resolution for obedience be obedience, yet every 
resolution is not that resolution. Resolution for obe- 
dience is sincere where it flows from an inward and 
rooted inclination; is founded on a firm belief of scrip- 
ture revelation ; is built on the highest and weightiest 
reasons ; and is the result of the most mature and 
deep deliberation. 

1. A sincere resolution flows from an inward, 
rooted inclination: "I have inclined my heart to 
perform thy statutes alway." Psalm 119 : 112. Our 
new purpose is from our new nature. It is not pro- 
duced by some sudden fright, or sense of danger ; or 
merely by a present force of argument; but by a 
divine power working the heart to the will and ways 
of God, and an habitual inclination thereto. Resolu- 
tion for holiness, without a holy inclination, is a blade 
without a root; fresh and green as it looks, it will 
wither and come to nothing no root, no fruit, nor 
lasting. The heart is the root of action, and grace is 
the life of the root. "When our resolutions are the 
blade sprouting forth of this living root, then they will 
abide, and bring forth the ear and a harvest. 

2. A sincere resolution is founded on a firm assent 
to the truth of scripture revelation. A Christian 
resolves for godliness because he believes God, that 
he is as he hath said, the rewarder of them that dili- 


gently seek Mm. He is "built on the Scriptures ; as 
his hopes, so his purposes have the foundation of the 
prophets and apostles, on which they stand. What- 
ever resolution has not this foundation is but as a house 
upon the sands. 

3. A sincere resolution is founded on the highest 
reason. "Where we resolve without reason, we quickly 
find a reason to change. Where we resolve we know 
not why, we shall change we know not how soon. 
To resolve we know not why, and to resolve on we 
know not what, will be alike unstable. Though there 
be reason for religion, yet religion may be taken up 
without reason. Whatever reason there be for it, yet 
if it be not understood or considered, it is all one as 
if there were no reason at all. And if there seem 
some reason for it, yet if it be not the highest reason, 
when a stronger than it comes we quickly change our 

The reasons we have for serving and following 
G-od are the highest of all reasons, and that whether 
we respect it as our duty or our happiness ; for, 

There is none can lay such claims to us as G-od. 
Whose am I? Who hath made .me? Who hath 
bought me ? " G-lorify G-od in your body and in your 
spirit, which are G-od's." 1 Cor. 6 :20. "Serve the 
Lord with gladness. Know ye that the Lord he is 
G-od ; it is he that hath made us, and not we our- 
selves ; we are his people, and the sheep of his pas- 
ture." Psalm 100 : 2, 3. What reason have you to 
serve men, or to serve sin, or the world ? Men think 
they have reason for it ; but what reason ? Are any 


of these G-od ? Are men your God ? Is sin or the 
world G-od ? Do you owe yourselves to them ? It is 
he that hath made us, and his we are. As the apos- 
tle saith concerning obedience to parents, much more 
may it be said here, Children, obey your G-'od ; for 
this is right ; this is his due, and your duty : if any 
one can lay as good a claim to you, let him carry you 
away for servants. 

There is none can be better to us than God. 
None can requite, none can reward our obedience as 
he. Where can you be better than with God ? He 
will require no more than that you serve him till 
you can find a better master. He that says, It is 
best to serve sin and the world, is a fool, and has 
said in his heart, There is no God. If God be God, 
he is the chief, yea, the only good. If any thing 
in the world, upon what account soever, be thought 
better than the Lord, that is set up for a god in his 

Whomsoever we serve, it is God must pay us our 
wages at last. G-od is judge ; he is the rewarder both 
of the evil and the good both of those who serve him 
and those who serve him not. If you serve the Lord, 
he will be your reward ; if you serve him not, he will 
reward you: but what reward have you? "Those, 
mine enemies, which would not have me reign over 
them, bring them, and slay them before me ;" there 
is their reward. Sin has its rewards ; but what are 
they but vanity and vexation ? Or if they were better, 
how long will they last? But when sin has paid the 
most it can, what a reward is there behind, that 


God has to pay you! "This shall ye have of my 
hand, ye shall lie down in sorrow." 

The wages which God will give shall certainly be 
blessed or dreadful, according to our obedience or 
disobedience. The reward that God has to give is an 
eternal reward : eternal salvation to them that obey 
him ; everlasting destruction to him that serveth him 
not. " I have a soul ; this body is the least part of me ; 
there is another world, a world to come ; a few years 
is the most I have to spend in this ; I must abide 
eternally, eternally in the other world. Of how little 
consequence is it what I have here, whether little or 
more, better or worse ; in a short time that will come 
all to one. But 0, my eternity! what is that like to 
be ? Why, it is God that must determine it, and he 
will certainly reward every man according to his 
works. ' Who will render to every man according to 
his deeds : to them who by patient continuance in 
well-doing, seek for glory and honor and immortality, 
eternal life ; but unto them that are contentious, and 
do not obey the truth, tribulation and anguish.' Rom. 
2 : 6-9. There is glory and shame, mercy and wrath, 
life and death, set before me ; there is no third state ; 
one of the two must be my lot; and this it is that 
determines which if I obey I live, if I disobey I die 
for ever." 

Now then, my resolution is founded on such rea- 
sons as these, than which none can be imagined 
higher and more weighty, till eternity become of less 
regard than time, and an immortal soul be set below 
a perishing body. The question being put, Shall I 


follow God or not ? G-od or the world ? God or my 
lust? speak, soul, give in thy answer; this is the 
answer it gives: "Why, there is none can lay such 
claim to me as God; there is none can he good to 
me as God : whomsoever I serve, it is God must he 
my rewarder; my everlasting hlessedness, or eternal 
rain, depends on him, and must be infallibly deter- 
mined according to my obedience or disobedience. 
This is the plain case obey, and live ; obey, or die for 
ever. And therefore what can I say, less or more, 
hut that I am the Lord's, and will be his servant 
Let others choose whom they will serve ; as for me, 
,0 my soul, serve thou the Lord." This resolution, 
thus founded, is like to stand. 

4. A sincere resolution is the fruit, of mature de- 
liberation. Deliberation gives reason its full weight, 
makes the strength of it appear ; it lays all things in 
the balance; it is the comparing of reasons for and 
against, the weighing of arguments and objections, 
encouragements and discouragements ; counting the 
cost, as well as the gain, particularly. In this delib- 
eration there must be a considering, 1. What there is 
in this obedience ; 2. What it is attended with, that 
may encourage. 

There must be a considering WHAT THERE is in 
this obedience ; or otherwise we resolve upon we know 
not what. Now there are five things in this obedi- 
ence: 1. Subjection; 2. Activity and industry ; 3. In- 
tegrity; 4. Circumspection; 5. Spirituality. 

(1.) Subjection. Servants must be subject, must 
not be at their own wills, but at the will of another, 


The heart of man naturally affects dominion ; that is 
the great controversy of sinners with God. Who shall 
be Lord ? " We are lords" at least we would be " we 
will come no more unto thee." Jer. 2 : 31. Obedience 
yields that God should be Lord; yea, and all others 
also whom he has made lords over us. The servants 
of Christ must not be, and yet must be, the servants 
of men ; they must not serve the lusts of rulers, but 
must be subject to their righteous laws and com- 
mands. God must be obeyed, and magistrates, min- 
isters, masters, parents must be obeyed in the Lord, 
and for the Lord ; yea, and they must be, when Grod 
will have it so, the servant of servants. 

While they must not serve the humors of the 
greatest, they must serve the necessities of the mean- 
est, must stoop to the lowest of offices, even to the 
washing of the feet of the least disciple. All this the 
Lord expects of them, and they must be subject. 
They must not dispute, but do his will; only it must 
be considered that there is a double questioning as to 
the will of Grod. There is a questioning whether that 
which is pretended to be the will of Grod, be so or not ; 
this ought to be done. And there is a questioning as to 
that which is granted to be the will of God, whether it 
be fit to be done, or safe to be done. " Is it not better 
to let it alone ? What advantage is there in it ? What 
reason is there for it ?" No, they must not thus dispute ; 
this is reason enough, "God will have it so." God's 
will is ever reason, and it must be our reason. It is 
enough for thee to say, This is that which the Lord 
hath commanded, and I must be subject. This is 


one thing that must "be considered, I will obey, and 
must be subject to Grod. 

(2.) Activity and industry. The servants of the 
Lord must be active and industrious. "Whom he sends 
into the vineyard he sends to work, and not to sleep. 
The life of a Christian is laborious : while others are 
in their beds, he must be on his knees ; while others 
take their pleasure, he must take pains ; while others 
take their times, now a little and then a little, he 
must be ever about his Master's business. An active 
spirit is an excellent spirit, .and necessary in a Chris- 
tian ; sluggards are the refuse of the earth. 

But here it must be considered that there is a 
double activity, gracious and natural. Natural ac- 
tivity arises from an innate vigor and vivacity of 
some men's spirits. There needs not industry in such 
to bring forth action; it is but leaving nature to its 
course, and that will fly high enough of itself. It 
requires more industry to regulate, and sometimes to 
restrain them, than to put them forth into action. It 
is more labor for them to rest than to be doing. Gra- 
cious activity is either natural activity managed and. 
improved for Grod, turned into a right course, running 
in a right channel; or a naturally inactive spirit, 
raised and quickened by grace and religious industry. 
This gracious, this holy activity, this is the excellency ;' 
it is the extract of the spirits and life of all our gifts 
and graces; and will go further, and do more high 
honor, and more abundant service to Gfod and Ms 
gospel, than is done by a thousand others. 

.An active sinner is the worst of men; how much 


service for the devil will lie dispatch in a little time i 
An active sinner is life and death met together. He 
is all life, and yet dead ; and he has more of death, 
because so much of life : like poison in wine, he de- 
stroys the more effectually. Yet the evil is not in his 
activity, but in the matter wherein he is employed : 
the good metal, as giving keenness to a weapon, is its 
excellency ; but in a madman's hand, better a wooden 
than a steel sword. An active spirit is so excellent, 
that it is a pity that ever sin should have the using 
of it ; it were well for religion if the devil were a 
drone, and had no other servants but the sluggards of 
the earth. But activity, when set right, is of great 
price in the sight of (rod, because it sets a great price 
upon God. Sloth-fulness puts a slight upon (rod 
when the Scriptures have set forth the great things, 
and the deep things of (rod ; when the Lord Jesus is 
evidently set forth as crucified before our eyes, as the 
propitiation for sin ; when the preciousness of his 
blood, the tenderness of his compassion, the riches of 
his grace, the sufficiency of his righteousness, his 
satisfaction and pardon, are all held forth in open 
sight; when the beauties of holiness, the joys of the 
Spirit, that peace which passeth all understanding, 
are laid forth to view ; when the most glorious things 
are spoken of the city of God, Jerusalem which is 
above; when God in his word calls to us, Awake, 
sleepers, arise, sluggards, see what is before you 
all this may be yours if you will: slothfulness puts 
this slight upon all, Tush ! all this is npt worth break- 
ing my sleep for; it is not all worth my labor to seek 


after ; my ease is better to me than G-od and all his 

We may best understand the value we put on 
things, by the pains and the cost we are content to 
be at to purchase them. When sinners bestow them- 
selves so upon the world, will bear such labor and 
travail, are so constantly, so indefatigably industrious 
in the pursuit of it, and withal run such hazards and 
dangers for it, they make it evident enough what esti- 
mate they put upon it. He whose time and strength, 
whose days and nights, yea, whose soul and hopes, 
must all be laid out in a purchase, must all go for a 
piece of land, or a little money or pleasure, need give 
us no other proof what a bargain he thinks this world 
to be. "I care not much for this world: it is a vanity, 
a shadow, the fashion of it passeth away ; I hope it is 
far enough off my heart, however I am charged with 
greediness after it." But what then mean all the 
expenses of thy time, of thy strength, of thy spirits, 
that thou daily layest out upon it ? What means so 
much hunting after, and heaping it up for thyself? 
What, hast thou been hunting all this while after 
shadows, heaping up vanities? No, no, thou mis- 
takest thyself, these shadows are thy substance these 
vanities are the god whom thou adorest ; if thou 
didst not prize, thou wouldst not venture so deeply 
for them. 

A.nd so on the other side, when so little is done 
for G-od when any thing must suffice to be spent on 
souls or eternity, what cheap things do we count 
them! " I love God above all, with all my heart, with 


all my soul ; he is all my hope, and all my desire. 
What a miserable creature were I, if it were not for 
my hope in G-od ! "What would all the world he to 
me, should I lose my soul?" But dost thou speak in 
earnest? Dost thou think what thou speakest? What, 
and such a very drone in seeking God? What, and 
so indifferent, so cold, and so spiritless in thy inquiries 
after him, in thy motions towards him ; so sparing of 
thy labor, so negligent of duty, so seldom at it, so soon 
weary, so many delays, so many excuses? How many 
times has God called thee after him, and all thine 
answer has been an .excuse : an excuse instead of an 
ordinance, an excuse instead of a prayer, an excuse 
instead of action, an excuse instead of alms, an excuse 
instead of an admonition or a reproof; if he will be 
served with excuses, he shall have service enough, but 
little besides. "I am weary," or "it is too late," or "it 
is cold ;" and so a short and hasty prayer must serve, 
or none at all. " I have much business upon me, a 
family, a farm, and the cares and troubles of it, that 
I cannot have so much time nor freedom to attend 
upon God as others have ;" and so a sermon lost, an 
ordinance lost. " I live among ill neighbors ; if I should 
be so forward and so active for God, so zealous, and 
so spiritual in my discourse, in my way, I should be 
but a scoff and a reproach, and it may be a prey to 
evil men. I want ability to speak to the edification 
of others, I have not the boldness others have, to 
reprove or admonish; I pray thee have me excused," 
Wise men indeed ! an excuse instead of a duty ! 
It is all one, as if when the Lord calls to thee, Come 


to me and be saved, thy answer should be, I pray thee 
excuse me, I must to the devil and "be damned. 

But is this thy love, is this thy zeal, is this thy val- 
uing of God above all? Tremble, sluggard; whatever 
excuses thou findest to substitute in the room of duty, 
this is that thou canst never excuse nor acquit thyself 
of a slighting of Grod. Thy very excuses will accuse 
thee as a slothful servant, and thy sloth as a slighter 
of Grod, "While the apostle says, "I reckon that the 
sufferings of this life are not worthy to be compared 
with the glory that shall be revealed," thou sayest, 
But I reckon that all the glory to come is not worthy 
to be compared with the present labor. 

But now activity and industry put a great value 
upon God; this is written upon all our labors, He is 
worthy for whom I do all this. Some of the most 
humble, watchful, laborious Christians do sometimes 
complain, "Oh, I fear I love not Gfod; his favor, his 
honor, is little set by of me." But whence then is thy 
care to 'please God? Whence are all thy labors of 
love ? Dost thou watch and pray and work and run? 
Canst thou spend and be spent for God, and yet not 
love him ? Dost thou live to God, canst thou die for 
God, and yet not prize him ? What greater proof canst 
thou give of love, than such labor ? 

Activity is also necessary. It is vain to think of 
making any thing of religion without it ; the work of 
it is too great to be done by lying still the comforts 
of it lie too deep to be got out by a wish. There is 
many a poor man in this world, that would be the 
richest man in the country if riches might be gotten 


by a wish : he may as soon wish himself into wealth, 
as thou into grace and comfort. This one thing, 
men's not being able to hear the labor of religion, is a 
rock on which many a soul hath split and suffered an 
eternal wreck. 

He that has some love to holiness, and yet not so 
much as to carry him through the work of holiness, 
is short of sincerity; and short of sincerity, short of 
salvation. He that sticks not at labor, will not stick 
at suffering : he that shrinks from doing, will shrink 
from suffering. Say not, There is a lion in the streets. 
Overcome the lion, and you will not fear the bear. 
Pass the first, and thou wilt be the more bold to ven- 
ture the latter. Holy activity will be a witness to thy 
sincerity; carry this witness in thy heart, and then 
which way soever the world may go, and what storms 
soever may fall, thou wilt have this to uphold thee 
Integrity and uprightness shall preserve me, and eter- 
nity reward me. "Where sincerity is the root, and 
holy activity the blossom, an eternal weight of glory 
shall be the fruit. Lie idle, and all will be lost. 
Take heed of, "Soul, take thine ease," lest the next 
word thou hear be, "This night shall thy soul be 
required of thee." This is the second thing included 
in obedience, which must be considered! I will obey ; 
but can I labor ? 

(3.) Integrity. The obedience which God ex- 
pects must be entire obedience ; not only the obedience 
of the whole man, but to the whole will of Grod. 
"Then shall I not be ashamed, when I have respect 
to all thy commandments." Psa. 119 : 6. "As obe- 


dient children, "be ye holy in all manner of conversa- 
tion." 1 Pet. 1 : 14, 15. " Teaching them to observe 
all things whatsoever I have commanded you." Matt. 
28 : 20. But of this having spoken more largely else- 
where, it shall suffice to give some short hints of ono 
comprehensive duty, wherein all the rest are included, 
and on which they depend ; and that is, the holding 
up and maintaining God's authority in the soul. As 
Gfod has set up his authority over the soul, that is, 
his word, which is to have the government of it ; so 
has he set up an authority in the soul, the understand- 
ing, and the conscience. As these powers are under 
the authority of the word, so they are set in authority 
over the subordinate and inferior faculties, the will, 
and the passions or affections. But sin now has made 
a mutiny and insurrection : the will rises against rea- 
son, and will not be guided ; the passions rebel against 
conscience, and will not be governed ; nay, they do 
not only resist, but take upon them to command and 
impose upon conscience. What the will would have, 
conscience must say it is reason it should have must 
be put to work to find out arguments to prove will to 
be reason, and to determine that what the will would 
have done, ought to be done. We easily bring our 
opinion to our affection bring ourselves to believe 
that to be right, which we are unreasonably willing 
to have to be right. But if it cannot prevail so far 
as to gain conscience to say that is right which it 
would have to be right, then it will strive hard to 
carry it, whether it be right or wrong. And this 
rebellion of the will and the passions against con- 

UmTU Upmeil, \ 1 



science, is the great cause of the soul's rebellion 
against God. 

When conscience has lost its authority, Grod's 
authority is gone. "While the understanding and the 
conscience are maintained in their due authority, 
where the will and affections are held in their due 
subjection, there the Lord reigns. While conscience 
rightly informed has its due, Grod shall have his due ; 
where the will and the passions have no more than 
their due, He shall have his own. Grod shall be 
willed the more, where nothing else is willed too 
much. Grod shall be loved the more and feared the 
more, where nothing else is loved and feared too 
much. The more anger, the more hatred, the more 
grief will be spent upon sin, if it be not inordinately 
spent elsewhere. how much service might be 
done, and how much quiet would be enjoyed in the 
heart, were this authority and subjection maintained 
and held up ! 

We may say of our affections, as men say of fire 
and water, They are the worst masters, but the best 
servants. How much would the Lord have of us, 
were these only the executioners of his will ! If con- 
science be commanded by the word, and the will and 
affections would be commanded by conscience, what 
would there then be wanting ? We should then not 
only be abundantly serviceable, but all would be se- 
rene and sweet and comfortable within us. If nothing 
were willed but what should be willed, we should 
ever have our will. If nothing were desired but 
what should be desired, and no more than it should 


be loved or desired, we should ever .have what we 
love. If we were not angry, or grieved, or afraid, 
but where we ought, and no more than we ought, 
what a calm would there be upon our spirits, even in 
cases wherein the spirits of others are like a troubled 
sea, that cannot rest, whose waters cast up mire and 
dirt. But where there is such disorder, such rebellion 
of the inferior against the superior faculties, there we 
are at a perpetual loss, both in point of duty and 
comfort. This therefore is necessary, if we will be 
obedient ; and those who have made trial what there 
is in it, do understand that this is hard work. 

I shall instance some few particular duties that 
are harder than others. He that will be entirely 
obedient, must stick at nothing that- (rod will have. 
There is scarcely any thing that God requires, but 
lust will be quarrelling at it as too hard; but there are 
some duties harder than others. It shall suffice only 
to name them : The denial of ourselves ; disobliging 
our nearest friends ; loving our enemies ; disobeying 
all the world in their unrighteous commands ; obey- 
ing Grod rather than men; returning good for evil; 
reproving men for sin, especially if they be superiors, 
or men on whom we have some dependence ; and the 
sacrificing our Isaac, yea, parting with all that we 
have. This then must be considered. You will obey ; 
but are you for any thing, for every thing the Lord 
requires ? 

(4.) Circumspection and care : " See that ye walk 
circumspectly." Bph. 5:15. A. little labor will go 
far with care, but will be nothing without it. It is 


not lie that is hot and busy and active ,at all adven- 
tures, hut he that keeps to his line and his rule, who 
is the obedient Christian. It is not so much action as 
regular action, wherein the life of Christianity lies, 
He that lives by rule, peace be on him, and mercy. 
Activity without discretion is extravagance; it is 
watchfulness that keeps within compass. He that is 
all action, has the more need of caution. A Christian 
must have his eyes in his head, as well as a soul in 
his body. He that resolves well in generals, and conies 
not off well in particulars, does but build castles in 
the air. What we ordinarily are in particulars will 
best prove what we are. He that is for any thing but 
this, any time but now, is for nothing. 

Circumspection includes two things taking no- 
tice, and taking heed. He that will be circumspect, 
must eye and observe what is before him ; must have 
his eye upon his end, his rule, and his goings ; must 
eye duty and sin, opportunities and temptations, his 
times and seasons : he must take heed, as well as take 
notice ; must keep a strict eye on himself, and hold a 
strict hand on himself, that he leap not over a duty, 
nor turn aside to iniquity; must set a guard upon 
himself, upon Ins tongue, upon his eyes, upon his ap- 
petite, upon his company, upon his habits, upon his 
thoughts, upon his passions, upon all the motions of 
his soul and the actions of his body. 

This will require something. " "What, not a word 
but must be weighed? Not a look but must be at- 
tended to? Not a thought but must be examined? 
Not a sin to be allowed ? Not a duty to be abated ? 


Not a circumstance; to be neglected ? Must all be in 
weight and in measure, by line and by rule, and this 
always too ? If something might serve, if sometimes 
might suffice, it might be borne; but to keep the 
engagement in every point, and that every day, this 
is a hard saying indeed." But thus it must be : to 
live as a Christian, and to walk exactly, accurately, 
precisely, is the same thing. Though duty and sin be 
as far distant as heaven and hell, yet there is but a 
hair between them. The least latitude is a trans- 
gression ; either all this that is, as to the purpose of 
the heart either. all this or nothing. This ..also must 
be considered. You will be obedient, but will you be 
circumspect ? 

(5.) Spiritually. This must be the obedience of 
faith. Romans 16 : 26. It is the very life of Jesus 
made manifest in our mortal flesh: "I live, yet not 
I, but Christ liveth in me ; and the life which I now 
live in the flesh, I live by the faith of the Son of 
God." Christians' obedience is their walking in 
Christ, Col. 2:6; all the acts of it are exercised and 
performed in the strength of Christ. I will go in the 
strength of the Lord : without him they can do noth- 
ing, but can do all things through Christ, which 
strengtheneth them. "I live, yet not I, but Christ 
liveth in me." I work, I wrestle, I run, yet not I, 
but Christ in me ; as the apostle speaks of his sins, 
"It is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in 
me." It is sin that sins ; so may it be said of duty. 
It is no more I that do it, but Christ that dwelleth in 
me. Though both be the act of the person, both the 


sin and the duty, yet the principle of the one is lust, 
the power of the other is of Christ. Christians cannot 
go through a duty, and they dare not enter upon one, 
without looking up to Christ and leaning upon him 
for assistance. They cannot go through, and there- 
fore they will not set forth, but in the strength of the 
Lord. All their acts of obedience are exhibited, and 

offered up in the name of Christ. Their services are 1 1 

their sacrifices to God, and Christ is their altar. | 


"What is a sacrifice without an altar? Christ is our * 

altar, which sanctifies our gift; God looks on all, 
and so do they, as nothing worth without Christ; 
God will not accept, and therefore they will not offer 
other than the Lamb for their sacrifice. All their 
acts of obedience are acknowledged to the praise of 
Christ. It is no more I that do itj but the grace of 
God which is with me. Grace does the work, and 
grace shall carry away the praise. Christ is all in 
the race, and therefore on his head the crown is 
set: "Not unto us, not unto us, but to thy name 
be the praise." Not of us, and therefore not unto 
us ; of him, and therefore unto him. If I am any 
thing that others are not, if I have done any thing 
more than others, no thanks to me, and therefore no 
praise. To Him be all, who is all in all to me. 
Thus the obedience of Christians is their walking in 

The obedience of Christians is their walking in 
the Spirit. They have received the Spirit, and they 
walk in the Spirit. Gal. 5 : 16. They have not re- 
ceived the spirit of this world, their spirit is not flesh, 


but the Spirit which is of God. 1 Cor. 2 : 12. They 
are dead to things carnal, the spirit of the world is 
departed, they have given up this : it is the Spirit of 
the living Grod who lives in them, and in this they 
live and walk. They walk in the light of the Spirit, 
in the power of the Spirit; the Spirit of the Lord 
steers their course and fills their sails is their pilot 
and their star, and their wind that carries them on. 
"When they pray, they pray in the Spirit ; when they 
hear, they hear in the Spirit : through the Spirit they 
mortify the flesh, are crucified to the world; they 
obey, they suffer, they fight, they overcome, through 
the Spirit of the living Grod that is in them. They 
live in fellowship with the Spirit, and by him with 
the Father and the Son. They dwell in the invisible 
world, their acquaintance and converse is in heaven ; 
thither they have access, and there they have accept- 
ance thither they have their recourse, and thence 
they have their returns. Duties and comforts are the 
tokens that are passing between heaven and earth. 
Their life is love and joy and praise ; these are the 
most noble acts of their obedience, and these give 
wings to their hearts, carry them on more swiftly and 
more sweetly through all their course. 

how heavily do we drive on, how slowly do our 
wheels move, when the Spirit of the living G-od is 
not in the wheels ! how dead are our duties, how 
lame are our walkings ; what low and poor-spirited 
creatures are we ! How weak are our hearts, how 
unripe our fruits ; we but half do what we do, there 
is no heart in our life, we are as bodies without souls, 


while our soul is without the Spirit. how sad it 

is with many of us upon this account! By our 

estrangement from God we have even lost ourselves ; 

we are not what we are, because no more where he 

is; By our distance from heaven we are even choked 

with the damps of the earth. We are fit for little, 

we prosper in nothing ; God takes no pleasure and 

we take no comfort in any thing we do ; our spirits 

are so chilled and benumbed within us that we make 3 

neither speed in our work, nor progress in our way. 

And what are we in society? To how little profit do 

we meet! How little heat do we get; yea, how 

much do we lose at our brethren's fires. We serve 

often but to damp and cool each other's spirits : as if 

it might be no longer said, Woe to him that is alone ; 

but, Woe be to him that is in company : alone he is 

more warm. 

Christians, I solemnly profess I am ashamed of 
myself, and my heart is pained within me, to observe 
how insipid, how spiritless, how carnal our converse is. 
How often may we meet, how long may we sit, Chris- 
tian with Christian, ere any thing that savors of the - 
spirit of a Christian comes from us ! how hard must 
we labor for a few gracious words ; how few such do 
come; how heartless when they come! How very 
few of us are there, whose ordinary converse speaks 
us to be .men of another world, whose business and 
whose delight lies above, and who are in good earnest 
pressing on towards heaven! How seldom and how 
short-breathed are our spiritual discourses ; how little 
must suffice ; how quickly are we diverted to things 


carnal and sensual ! Sure it is our little communion 
with Gfod, that has thus debased the communion of 

let us live more in the fellowship of the Spirit, 
and we shall have fellowship one with another to bet- 
ter purpose. Let us warm ourselves at the Sun, let 
us dwell more in his beams, and we shall get and give 
more light and heat. Thus must it be considered ere 
we resolve what there is in this obedience. 

Further, it must be considered what obedience 
is likely to be attended with from without : what 
suffering it may cost us, what scorn and contempt 
and reproaches and persecutions of all sorts. It is 
likely to set earth and hell upon our backs. If carnal 
counsels and fleshly policies, if all the powers of dark- 
ness, if might and malice can do it, this way will be 
made too hot and too hard for thee ; tribulation, great 
tribulation thou must expect, and canst not escape ; 
and the more strict and circumspect, the hotter must 
thou expect thine assaults will be. 

Professors of religion who are not so strict to their 
rule but that they can dispense with duty, nor so for- 
ward in point of zeal and activity but that they can 
remit and abate as occasion serves, escape this per- 
secuting world the better; but he that will be faith- 
ful, whoever escape, is sure to be made a prey. This 
also must be well considered. I will follow Christ; 
but can I drink of the cup that he drank of? Can I 
be baptized with the baptism that he was baptized 

There are persons who sometimes take up the pro- 



fession of religion, and resolve all of a sudden that 
they will follow Christ, not understanding what there 
is in it, or what Christianity may do for them, who, 
"by the time they have looked a little further, and mid 
it another manner of difficulty than at first they 
imagined ; and withal, when they find the armies of 
the aliens begin to fall on them, the dogs to tear, the 
wolves to worry, the eagles and the vultures and all 
the "birds of prey to pitch upon them, and begin in 
earnest to feel the smart of religion in those persecu- 
tions that are raised against them for it, presently 
make their retreat and go back.,* " Where am I? 
What have I chosen ? Is this to be a Christian ? Does 
Christ look for all this from Ms followers, and will he 
leave them to such violence and rapine, as the reward 
of their faithfulness to his name ? I never thought it 
had been such hot service; and if I cannot be a saint 
at a cheaper rate than this, follow Christ who will for 
all me : let those who have nothing to lose, or can bear 
so much labor and pain and violence, take it up if 
they please; for my part, I must look to myself, I 
must not be undone." 

" Master, I will follow thee whithersoever thou 
goest," said the scribe. Matt. 8 : 19. " Man," says 
Christ, "thou understandest not what thou sayest. 
Dost thou know whither I am going, where my dwell- 
ing, where my lodging is? The foxes have holes, and 
the birds of the air have nests, but the Son of man 
hath not where to lay his head." And behold, there 
is an end of the scribe's Christianity, we hear not one 
word more about it. 


Not so he who knows what it is to be a disciple, 
who has looked through religion, through the length 
and breadth of it, has duly weighed all that can be 
said for or against his taking it up, has examined the 
grounds and reasons he has for it, what weight there 
is in them, has considered the objections, has cast up 
the cost and charges .of it, and as the issue and result 
of the most serious debate, stands settled in his judg- 
ment, that, all things considered, it is indisputably 
the best and wisest and safest course he can take : 
"It is, beyond all controversy, incomparably better 
for me to hearken x to the Lord in all that he shall re- 
quire, and to run all hazards with him, and that pres- 
ently, from this day forward to the end of my life." 
He that stands thus settled in his judgment, there- 
upon feels his soul fixing itself in this peremptory 
resolution: "Well, through the grace of G-od, I will 
be his servant; I give up myself to the government of 
his will, to follow him in righteousness and holiness 
. all my days. I am sensible it is no light thing to be 
a Christian ; I see I must be subject, I see I must be 
circumspect, I see I must be active, I must hold back 
nothing that God will have. I see this, flesh will be 
pained, and will flinch and groan under so severe a 
yoke. I see the devil and this evil world will be upon 
me, laying on more load, to make my bargain as dear 
as they can. But be there in it what there will, let 
it cost me ever so dear, I am resolved, I will venture 
all upon it; the Lord is my G-od, and him will I fol- 
low in all things that he shall speak; I put myself 
into the everlasting arms, I trust upon everlasting 


strength, I will go forth in the name of the Lord: and 
now speak. Lord, for I will hear." 

This sincere resolution, this will hold out : when 
our holy inclinations are so rooted and strong, that 
they bear down all fleshly inclinations; when our 
assent to scripture is so firm that it overbalances all 
objections against it; when our reasons for religion are 
so high and weighty that they weigh down the highest 
pretences against it; when we have thoroughly con- 
sidered what there is in it, and compared all that can 
be said for or against our following the Lord, and upon 
the whole matter we judge it our best course, and 
accordingly resolve for it this is sincere resolution, 
this is the obedience of the heart. 

II. OBEDIENCE OF THE LIFE. This is the inclina- 
tion and resolution springing up into action, and is a 
necessary proof of the soundness of the resolution. 

Though sincere resolution be obedience on G-od's 
account, yet that resolution which, supposing there 
be time and opportunity, does not break forth into act, 
is undoubtedly unsound and deceitful. There are two 
things infallibly included in spiritual life a will, and 
a power. Grace is the disposing and enabling the 
heart for a holy life ; and where there is both a will 
and a power, performance will certainly follow. This 
sincerity of actual obedience is that which the prayer 
of the psalmist looks to: "Let my heart be sound in 
thy statutes, that I be not ashamed." Psa. 119 : 80. 

There is a soundness in the faith, and a sound- 
ness in the statutes of the Lord. Faith denotes in 
Scripture either the doctrine of faith, or the grace of 


faith. And accordingly, soundness in the faith signi- 
fies both the receiving and entertaining sound doc- 
trine, and the sound or sincere embracing that doc- 
trine. Soundness in the statutes of the Lord denotes 
especially the practice, the living or walking uprightly 
under the power of that doctrine, under the govern- 
ment and obedience of the statutes of the 'Lord. 
"What this obedience of life is, it is easy to gather 
out of what has been spoken touching the obedience 
of the heart; I shall only add, that this obedience is 
sound and sincere 

1. In general, when the whole course of life is the 
issue of the mentioned 'sincere resolution when the 
life is the birth of the purpose, the fruit growing up 
out of that holy root. There may .be actions mate- 
rially good, that yet are not gracious actions because 
they arise not from a right spring. "When the soul 
has devoted itself to God in Christ, and believingly, 
understandingly, and deliberately determined in his 
strength to keep his word, and this determination goes 
into the performances of the life, and is the root and 
soul of that holy course we walk in, there is sincerity. 

Some persons may be found who have taken up 
the profession and go far in the practice of godliness, 
abstaining from gross sins, yea, and making attempts 
upon the mortification of inwardlusts applying them- 
selves to the duties of religion, praying, hearing, read- 
ing, meditating, discoursing of God and the things of 
God, exercising themselves in the works of righteous- 
ness and mercy, being meek, temperate, patient; and 
if all this arise only from the advantages of a good 


nature, good education, good society or acquaintance, 
a powerful ministry, or the workings of natural con- 
science, as possibly it may, and does not spring forth 
from such a fixed, well-founded resolution, it is short 
of sincerity. Whatever the blades be, they have no 
root, and will certainly wither away. 

2. In particular actions, when they are done in 
simplicity and singleness of heart unto the Lord 
when, whatever sinful mixtures there may sometimes 
be of carnal motives, that may have an influence to 
bring them about, yet the great poise that moves the 
wheels, the swaying motive that brings us on, is God, 
and our respect to his will and honor. 

Now for this also the Lord undertakes, promising 
not only assistance, but success sufficient grace, and 
efficacious grace: "I will cause them to walk in my 
statutes, and they shall keep my judgments and do 
them." I will not only teach them my statutes ; I 
will not only incline their hearts to my testimonies ; 
I will not only strengthen them for my work ; but I 
will cause them to walk in my statutes. The event 
shall be sure,. they shall keep my judgments and do 
them; my word shall fail, my promises be of none 
effect, let me be accounted unfaithful, if I do not 
make them faithful to me. 




"I WILL make an everlasting covenant with them, 
that I will not turn away from them, to do them 
good ; but I will put my fear in their hearts, that they 
shall not depart from me." Jer. 32 : 40. 

The, promise of eternal life is made to those who 
endure to the end : " He that endureth unto the end 
shall he saved." Overcome, and reign. "Be thou 
faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of 
life." Rev. 2 : 10. " If thou forsake him, he will cast 
thee off for ever." 1 Chron. 28 : 9. " If any man 
draw hack, my soul shall have no pleasure in him." 
Heb. 10 : 38. Christians, beware of apostasy, beware 
of presumption ; pass the time of your sojourning here 
in fear. Let it not be said of you, Ye did run well. 
He runs well, that does not give up, that sits not 
down on this side the goal. " So run that ye may 
obtain." There are also promises of enduring. The 
covenant of G-od is an everlasting covenant. "He 
hath commanded his covenant for ever." Psalm 

There are two things in the forementioned scrip- 
ture, Jer. 32 : 40, secured to believers. 

, s, 

God will not depart from them. "I will not 
turn away from them." G-od is with me, but I fear 


I shall provoke him away : I shall weary him out by 
my sins, and drive him from me. No, saith the Lord, 
I will not turn away from them, to do them good ; I 
will never leave thee, nor forsake thee. 

They shall not depart from him. It is true, the 
Lord will "be with me ; but it is only while I am 
with him : if I depart, he will depart ; if I forsake 
him, he will oast me off for ever. Here is my great 
fear, that I shall turn away from him ; there is in me 
an evil heart of unbelief, that is ever departing from 
the living God. this false and fickle heart, I dare 
not trust it for an hour. My corruptions are strong, 
my temptations are many, every day brings its temp- 
tations ; and I am in great fear, that by one means 
or other, one day or other, I shall fall before them, 
and depart from the living God. No, says G-od, fear 
not, thou shalt not depart: "I will put my fear in 
their hearts, that they shall not depart from me." 
They shall be kept by my almighty power, "through 
faith unto salvation." My grace shall be with them, 
and my grace shall .be sufficient for them, and shall 
preserve them to my heavenly kingdom. 

As there is that within and without an impenitent 
sinner to keep him from Christ, so there is that 
within and without a true Christian to lead him to 

Impenitent sinners have that within them which 
draws them away. Corrupt nature, the power of 
unmortified lust, this it is that bears the sway in 
their hearts ; and however, for the time, the stream 
may be somewhat turned out of its course, or bayed 


up however, by the impetus of some external mo- 
tives or arguments, or the impulses of an awakened 
conscience, or some sudden heat of affection, they are 
carried on after and in some fair compliance with 
the Lord Jesus ; yet, when the harrier is removed, 
when the 'external force is spent, .conscience laid to 
sleep, the heat of affection allayed, which is often 
almost as .soon, out as in, their very natures will bring 
them back to their old course. What is it that pulls 
a stone or a lump of clay down again, that is thrown 
into the air ? Why, when the power by which they 
were forced up is spent, their nature, their inherent 
gravity, will bring them down to their place. Sin- 
ners need no other weights to pull them down to this 
earth than their earthly hearts. 

And there is one without them that will draw 
them back. Satan the god of this world, whose they 
are and whom they serve, may indulge them with so 
much liberty for their religion as is consistent with 
their captive state, and as may secure them the more 
under his dominion for hypocrites are often the 
faster to Satan for being so near to Christ and the 
very religion they have is but the devil's snare, by 
which he holds them back from religion ; yet, lest by 
venturing them too far, they should be lost to him 
at last, he that first tempted them so near to Christ 
hypocrites are often beholden to the devil for the 
religion, they have will quickly tempt them back 

And so on the other side, there are the like rea- 
sons why saints stay not away from Christ. There 


is that within them which, will bring them back. 
The grace of God within them will bring them home. 
The grace of G-od is now their nature. Sinners while 
walking with Christ, and saints while wandering from 
Christ, are both under a force they are carried 
against the stream; when the winds go down that 
carried them on, they will return to their course. 
The grace of God is the seed of God: "He that is 
bora of God sinneth not," that is, not unto death ; 
"the seed of God remaineth in him." The seed of 
God is immortal seed ; it may languish and be ready 
to die, but it shall not die, it shall recover. 

There is also One above them who will bring them 
back, though he suffer them for a time to wander 
from the way. " Of those whom thou hast given me, 
I have lost none." He hath lost none, and he will 
lose none. He sends a word of commandment after 
them: "Return, backsliding children; for I am 
married unto you." Jer. 3 : 14. Whither are you run- 
ning ? "Whom are you following after ? Come back 
from your lovers, return to your husband. I am mar- 
ried to you, and we may not part. 

After the word of command, he sends a word of 
promise : " I will heal your backslidings." Jer. 3 : 22. 
Return- from your backslidings, and I will heal them. 
I will forgive your backslidings, and I will cure you 
of your backsliding heart. All the breaches they 
have made shall be made up ; I will pass by all that 
you have done, and be reconciled to you. If you will 
turn, return and I will receive you. And this word 
of promise is a word of power. I will bring you to 


Zion: "Then shall she say, I will go and return to 
my first husband." Hosea 2 : 7. " Behold, we come 
unto thee, for thou art the Lord our Grod." Jer. 3 : 22. 
He that would not leave his Israel after the flesh with 
their idols, will much less leave his Israel after the 
Spirit: "Being confident of this very thing, that he 
which hath begun a good work, will perform it 'until 
the day of Jesus Christ." Phil. 1 : 6. 

A good work may be said to be begun in two 
senses. . One is when there is some good thing doing- 
towards it: when the Lord has been ploughing up 
the fallow-ground, making his batteries against the 
strong-hold, shaking secure hearts, breaking false 
hopes, awakening consciences, convincing sinners, 
spreading sin and death and hell before them, enter- 
ing upon a treaty with them, and persuading them 
over to Christ, to make an escape there may be 
hopes in this ; but sinners, awakened sinners, beware 
you make not a stand at the threshold. Beware that 
your ploughed ground be not left to lie fallow. Be- 
ware that the womb prove not the grave of all your 
hopes. Mistake not conviction for conversion ; make 
on, let not your God nor your souls lose the things 
which have been wrought. The other sense is when 
there is some good thing done : when the rubbish is 
removed, and the first stone is laid ; when the plough 
has been going, and the good seed is sown ; when 
the new creature has passed the birth ; when Christ 
is formed, and the light of life is newly sprung up in 
the soul. If there be but a grain of mustard-seed, 
the least and lowest degree of saving grace broken 


forth in the heart, the question is not whether it he 
much or little ; if it be grace, there is the immortal 
seed, there is the good work begun, which shall be 
carried on till the clay of Jesus Christ. Grace is a 
security for glory. Yet beware, Christians, let not 
this security make you secure; though there be a 
harvest in the seed, yet the seed must be cherished, 
watched, and well looked to, that it may grow up to 
the harvest. He that lets it die for want of looking 
to, proves that it was dead while alive. Let. not your 
falling short of glory prove that your grace was not 


Christians, lay hold on the promise and lift up 
your heads : you are under fears ; however it be with 
you for the present, you are in doubt how it may be ; 
your way is long and dangerous, your hearts are de- 
ceitful and unstable ; you are going on at present, but 
doubt how you shall hold out: '"I may meet with 
lions in the way, which may fright me back ; I may 
lose my way, and never recover it ; I may be weary, 
and faint in the way, and lie down and give up. My 
Lord and my soul have been often upon the parting 
point; I have been almost gone, and I tremble to 
think what may yet become of me." Yet remember 
who it is that has said, "I will not turn from you, to 
do you good ; I will put my fear in your hearts, and 
you shall not depart from me." Rise, soul, take care 
for to-day, and take no thought for to-morrow. Mind 
the present duty, go on thy way, though weeping 
and trembling and hard bestead: go on thy way, 
and then commit thy way and thyself to Him, by 


whose mighty power thou shalt he kept through faith 
unto salvation. Faithful is He that hath called you, 
and will do it, 

/ And no.v you have all. Let us hear the conclu- 
sion of the whole matter. God has made a covenant 
with his people, has given himself for their portion, 
his Son for their price, his Spirit for their guide in 
the way, his earth for their accommodation by the 
way, his angels for their guard, the powers of dark- 
ness and death for their spoils, everlasting glory for 
their crown. And "because their way is difficult and 
their work "is contrary to them, he has given them all 
that grace which is necessary to "bring them to glory. 
In general, a new heart, in all things suited to their 
way, and thoroughly furnished for every good work. 
In particular, knowledge to guide, oneness to fix and 
intend, tenderness to submit to and yield, love to 
constrain and bring on, fear to fence and hold 'in, 
obedience to perform and bring forth, and perse- 
verance to go through and hold out to the end ; and 
there grace and glory meet. This is the covenant of 
grace, this is the word which by the gospel is preached 
unto you. 

"Will it be said, " But if God has undertaken all this 
for us, what is there then left us to do ? Here is a 
doctrine according to sinners' hearts : if this be gos- 
pel, then, soul, take thine ease, take thy liberty, cast 
away care, make much of thy body; God will take 
care of the rest ?" 


But is there nothing required of us ? Let the 
Scriptures speak : " Yet for all this will I be inquired 
of," or sought unto, "by the house of Israel," Ezek. 
36 : 37 ; otherwise let them look for no such things. 
He that will not ask in faith, "let not that man think 
he shall receive any thing of the Lord." James 1 : 7. 
And can he think to receive any thing who neither 
believes nor prays ; who neither prays in faith, nor 
prays at all ? "It is (rod which worketh in you both 
to will and to do." Phil. 2 : 12, 13. What then ? 
Therefore sit you still and do nothing? No such 
thing: therefore "work out your salvation with fear 
and trembling," saith the apostle. The promise of 
God was never intended to make the command of 
(rod of none effect. God, in promising grace, prom- 
ises a power for duty ; and as he does not give, so we 
must not receive that power or grace of God, in vain. 
"While he gives what he requires, he still requires 
what he gives. That promise of God, "Ye shall be 
my people," though he undertake to make it good, 
yet is also the matter of our stipulation. And in this 
promise, wherein the Lord assures us what we shall 
be, is included a precept, wherein we may understand 
what we ought to be. 

In undertaking to give us" a new heart, a tender 
and obedient, a persevering heart, the Lord promises 
both to make us what we should be and to help us in 
what we are bound to do, and gives us at once a clear 
hint both of our mercy and duty. This is the sense 
and sum of that promise, The Lord will work all that 
in us, and will help and cause us to perform all that 


which, is required unto salvation ; and so the promise 
on G-od's part does not make void, but establish the 
obligation on ours. Do we then make void the law 
through faith? Nay, we establish the law. 

Though it be certain as to the event, that all 
which is necessary to salvation shall be accomplished 
in us, since Grod hath undertaken that, yet it is alto- 
gether as certain, that Grod has made our loving him, 
fearing him, obeying his whole will, and our sincerity 
and perseverance herein, so necessary that we cannot 
otherwise be saved. 

Christians, mistake not, nor abuse the grace of 
the gospel. -The Lord never meant your mercy should 
make void your obligation to duty. Redemption from 
sin was never intended as a toleration of sin. He 
gives not his Spirit in favor of the flesh. "What he 
undertakes to work for you was never with a mind 
to maintain you in idleness. The grace of G-od that 
bringeth salvation teacheth us, "that, denying un- 
godliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, 
righteously, and godly in this present world." Titus 

Though you are saved by grace, yet you are still, 
in a sense, debtors to the whole law. Perfect obedi- 
ence to the whole law, even to the utmost iota, is still 
due from you; and if it be not in your hearts to pay 
all that you owe that is, if there be any duty com- 
manded in the whole book of Grod, that you dispense 
with, that you will not set 'your hearts to observe and 
obey ; if there be any one sin that you must be ex- 
cused in, and will not part with ; if there be any, the 


highest pitch of holy care, activity, industry, zeal for 
God and holiness, that you will not he persuaded to 
press hard after this is an evidence of such an un- 
sound heart as has no part in the gospel or its salva- 
tion. Perfection is still due, though sincerity will he 
accepted. Sincerity shall he accepted; but what is 
sincerity less than a hearty willingness to he perfect, 
attested hy a striving and. pressing on to that mark 
which is set before us ? 

admire and Hess the Lord for his grace, but 
do not turn the grace of (rod into licentiousness. 
Shall we continue in sin, because grace hath abound- 
ed ? "Will ye thus requite the Lord ? Will ye thus 
deceive yourselves, foolish people and unwise? 
Will you slight him, because he has loved you ; kick 
at him, because he has cared for you ; shake off his 
yoke, because he has secured you the crown ? Will 
you serve his enemies, because he has saved you from 
them ? Will you nourish your diseases, because he 
has said he will cure you ? Will you live, and not eat ; 
reap, and not plough ? Will you not eat, because he 
he has given you meat? Will you not run, because 
he has given you legs ; nor work,- because he has given 
you hands ; nor watch, because he has given you eyes? 
Or will you tempt the Lord, and call it your trust in 
him ? Awake from such madness, 

Christians, say not, If God will, I shall; whether 
I take care or not, believe or not, repent or not, be 
obedient or rebellious, whether I wake or sleep, work 
or be idle, my unbelief, my disobedience, my negli- 
gence shall not make the faith of G-od of none effect. 

But rather,- siiice : :God.i has said, You shall, let ^thy 
heart answer/ I will' walk in his' statutes; arise, 
my soul, up and -be doing-; work out thy salvation, 
because it is God that worketh in thee to will and to 
do. Shake off thy sloth, set about thy work, run thy 
race, since God hath saidj Thou shalt hot run nor 
labor in vain. And- look to it, for however thy idle- 
ness or greatest unfaithfulness will hot ma'ke void the 
covenant of God, yet will it make manifest : that thou 
hast no part nor lot in it. ; 

But to all these glorious things that "have been 
spoken, possibly some will reply, "0, if all this be 
so, then happy saints indeed! 'Happy are the people- 
that are in such a case; yea, blessed are the people 
whose God is the Lord.' But will the Lord indeed 
do all these things for mortals ? Will he take notice 
of worms ? Shall such dry bones live ? Will he set 
such vile dust as the apple of his eye? Is not this too 
good to be true, too great to be believed? that I 
\were sure the one half were as it hath been told me !" 

\ : 

Too great to be believed ! As' if it must be questioned 

whether the sun be light because it dazzles our eyes. 

,But what certainty would you have ? Is all this too 

" ^great for the great aiid Almighty God to do, who hath 

v "" ' 

5 fsaid, "As the 'heavens are higher than the earth, so 
are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts 
than your thoughts." Isa. 55 : 9. Can he not do it, 
who can do all things? Will he not doit, when he. 
hath said he will?' Will the Lord mock? Can God 
deceive? Shall his word, yea, and his oath -too, those 
two immutable things in which it is impossible for 

Heaven'Opcned. 12 


God to lie, can these fail? If you should hear the 
Lord himself speaking to you from heaven with audi- 
"ble voice, My covenant I make with thee, and it is 
my intent and purpose to perform every word that is 
written in it, according to the plain import and mean- 
ing thereof; there shall not a tittle fail, neither will 
I alter the thing that is gone forth of my lips. Heaven 
and earth shall fail, hut my word shall not fail; trust 
to it, trust everlasting truth, trust to everlasting 
strength. Fear not, for there shall not fail one word 
of all that I have spoken by all my servants the 

If you should hear the Lord speaking thus to you 
from heaven, what would you say? would not this 
satisfy you? Why, search the Scriptures, that "more 
sure word of prophecy." 2 Pet. 1 : 19. Bead them 
diligently, understand what thou readest, and then 
say if thou dost not there find the Lord speaking fully 
to thee the words of the two following chapters. 





ALL. ye inhabitants of the world, and dwellers 
on the earth, come, see and hear ; gather yourselves 
together unto the proclamation of .the great King. 
Hear, you that are far off, and you that are near. 
He that hath an ear to hear, let him hear. I am the 
voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare ye 
the way of the Lord. Let every valley "be exalted, 
and every mountain made low, for the glory of the 
Lord is to he revealed. Go through, go through the 
gates, prepare the way. ' Cast up, cast up the high- 
way ; gather out the stones, lift up the standard for 
the people; for the Lord proclaimeth salvation to the 
ends of the earth. Tidings, tidings, ye captives ! 
Hear, all ye that look for salvation in Israel ; behold, 
I bring you glad tidings of great joy, which shall be 
unto all people. Blessed news! prepare your ears 
and hearts. The Lord has commanded me, saying, 
Go unto the people and sanctify them ; let them wash 

and be ready, for the Lord is coming down upon 

* By Rev. Joseph Alleine, author of "An Alarm to Unconverted 


mount Zion, in the .sight of all the nations. Not in 
earthquakes and fire, not in clouds and darkness, not 
in thunderings and burnings, rending the mountains 
and "breaking the rocks in pieces. He speaks not to 
you out of the blackness and darkness and tempest ; 
you shall say no more, Let not Cfod speak to us, lest 
we die ; he cometh peaceably, the law of kindness is 
in. his mouth, he preacheth Peace, peace, to him that 
is far off, and to him that is near. 

Behold how he cometh, leaping upon the moun- 
tains ; he hath passed mount Ebal no more wrath or 
STANDETH TO BLESS THE PEOPLE : as did Mordecai to 
his nation, he writeth the words of truth and peace, 
seeking the welfare of his people and speaking peace 
to all his seed. 

Behold how he cometh, clothed with flames of 
love, with bowels of compassion, plenteous redemp- 
tion, and multiplied pardons. how full is his love ! 
the tenderness of his compassions ! how full is 
his heart, even aching till it is eased by supplying his 
hungry children! 

Hearken therefore, ye children, hearken to me. 
To you it is commanded, people, nations, and lan- 
guages, that at what time you hear the joyful sound, 
the trump of jubilee, the tidings of peace in the voice 
of the everlasting gospel, you fall down before the 
throne, and worship Him that liveth for ever and ever. 

Arise, and come away; prepare, prepare you; 
hear not with an uncircumcised ear; you are not 
upon a common thing. Behold, the throne is set, the 


throne of grace, where majesty and mercy dwell to- 
gether; from thence will the Lord meet you, from 
thence will he commune with you, from the mercy- 
seat, from between the cherubim, upon the ark of the 
testimony. Lo, tjie Lord cometh out of his pavilion, 
the mighty God from Zion. Selah. His glory cover- 
eth the heavens, the earth is full of his praise. A 
fire of love goeth before him, mercy and. truth are 
round about him, righteousness and peace are the 
habitation of his throne ; he rideth on his horses and 
chariots of salvation, the covenant of life and peace is 
in his mouth. 

Rejoice, ye heavens, make a joyful noise to the 
Lord, all the earth. Let the sea roar, the floods clap 
their hands, and the multitudes of the isles rejoice. 
Stand forth, the host of heaven, prepare your harps, 
cast down your crowns, be ready with your trumps, 
bring forth your golden vials full of odors; for our 
voices will jar, our strings will break, we cannot reach 
the note of our Maker's praise. 

Yet let them that dwell in the dust arise and sing. 
Bear your part in this glorious service, but consider 
and attend. Call out your souls, and all that is with- 
in you. Lift up your voices, fix your eyes, enlarge 
your hearts, exert all then 1 powers ; there is work for 
them all. Be intent and serious, you cannot raise too 
high a strain. 

Come forth, ye graces, beset the way, be all in 
readiness. Stand forth, faith and hope; flame, 
love ; come, ye warm desires, and break with longing. 
Let fear with all veneration do its obeisance. Joy, 


prepare thy songs, call up all the daughters of music 
to salute the Lord as he passeth by. Let the gener- 
ations of the saints appear, and spread the way with 
boughs and garments of salvation, and songs of de- 
liverance. Ye stand this day all of you before the 
Lord your Grod, your captains, your elders, your offi- 
cers, with all the men of Israel, your little ones, your 
wives, and the stranger that is within thy camp, from 
the hewer of wood to the drawer of water that thou 
shouldest enter into covenant with the Lord thy Grod, 
and into his oath which the Lord thy Grod maketh 
with thee this day : that he may establish thee to-day 
for a people unto himself, and that he may be unto 
thee a (rod, as he hath said unto thee, and as he hath 
sworn. Dent. .29: 10-13. 

I have done my errand. The messenger of the 
morning disappeareth ; when the orient Sun cometh 
forth out of his chambers, I vanish. I put my mouth 
in the dust. The voice of the Lord ! The soft and 
still voice ! my soul, wrap thy face in thy mantle, 
and bow thyself to the ground, and put thee in the 
cleft of the rock, while Jehovah proclaimeth his name, 
and maketh all his goodness to pass before thee. 


Hear, ye ends of the earth, the mighty G-od, 
the Lord hath spoken : Gather my saints unto me, 
those that have made a covenant with me by sacrifice. 
Behold, I establish my covenant between me and you. 
By my holiness have I sworn, that I will be your 
covenant friend.. I lift up my hand to heaven, and 


swear that I live for ever; and "because I live, you 
shall live also. I will be yours yours to all intents 
and purposes : your refuge and your rest ; your patron 
and your portion ; your heritage and your hope ; your 
God and your guide. While I have, you shall never 
want; and what I am to myself, I will he to you. 
And you shall he my people, a chosen generation, a 
kingdom of priests, a holy nation, a peculiar treasure 
unto me ahove all people. I call heaven and earth to 
witness this day, that I take you for mine for ever. 
My name shall be upon you, and you shall he pillars 
in the temple of your God, and shall go no more out. 
My livery shall you wear, and the stamp of my 
own face shall you carry ; and I will make you my 
witnesses, and the epistles of Christ unto the world, 
and you shall he chosen vessels to hear my name 
before the sons of men. And that you may see that 
I am in earnest with you, lo, I make with you an 
everlasting covenant, ordered in all things, and sure ; 
and do here solemnly deliver it to you as my act and 
deed, sealed with sacred blood, and ratified with the 
oath of God, a God that cannot lie, that knows no 
place for repentance. Come, ye blessed, receive the 
instrument of your salvation; take the writings, be- 
hold the seals ; here are the conveyances of the king- 
dom. Fear not, the donation is free and full. See, 
it is written in blood, founded on the all-sufficient 
merits of your Surety, in whom I am well pleased; 
whose death makes this testament unchangeable for 
ever ; so that your names can never be put out, nor 
your inheritance alienated, nor your legacies dimin- 


ished ; nothing may be altered, nothing added, noth- 
ing subtracted, no, not for ever. Happy, art thou, 
Israel! Who is like unto thee, people? Only 
believe, and know your own blessedness. Attend, 
my children, unto the blessings of your Father ; and 
hear and know, 

ROGATIVES that I here confirm upon you. 

your pardon. Though your sins be as many as the 
sands, and as mighty as the mountains, I will drown 
them in the deeps of my bottomless mercies. I will 
be merciful to your unrighteousness ; I will multiply 
to pardon ; where your sins have abounded, my grace 
shall superabound ; though they be as scarlet, they 
shall be as white as snow ; though red like crimson, 
they shall be as wool. Behold, I declare myself sat- 
isfied, and pronounce you absolved. The price is paid, 
your debts are cleared, your bonds are cancelled. 

"Whatever the law, or conscience, or the accuser 
hath to charge upon you, here I exonerate you, I dis- 
charge you. I, even I, am He that blotteth out your 
transgressions, for my name's sake. Who shall lay 
any thing to your charge, when I acquit you ? Who 
shall impeach or implead you, when I proclaim you 
guiltless ? Sons, daughters, be of good cheer ; your 
sins are forgiven you. I will sprinkle your consciences, 
and put the voice of peace into their mouths, and they 
shall be your registers, in which I will record your 
pardon, and the voice of guilt and wrath and terror 
shall cease. 


Here I sign your release from the house of bond- 
age. Come forth, ye captives, come forth, ye prison- 
ers of hope, for I have found a ransom, I proclaim 
liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison 
to them that are bound. Behold, I have broken your 
bonds, and shaken the foundations of your prisons, and 
opened the iron gates. By the blood of the covenant 
have I sent forth the prisoners out of the pit wherein 
there is no water. Arise, redeemed of the Lord, 
put off the raiment of your captivities, arise and come 

The dark and noisome prison of sin shall no longer 
detain 'you. I will loose your fetters, and knock off 
your bolts. Sin shall not have dominion over you. 
I will heal your backslidings, I will subdue your ini- 
quities, I will sanctify you wholly, and will put my 
fear in your hearts, that you shall not depart from me. 
Though your corruptions be strong and many, yet the 
aids of my Spirit, the cleansing virtue of my word and 
of my corrections, shall so work together with your 
prayers and endeavors, that they shall not finally pre- 
vail against you, but shall surely fall before you. 

From the strong and loathsome jail of the grave 
do I deliver you. death, I will be thy plague ; 
grave, I will be thy destruction; my beloved shall 
never see corruption. I will change your rottenness 
into glory, and make your dust arise and praise me. 
What is sown in weakness, I will raise in power; 
what is sown in corruption, I will raise in incorrup- 
tion; what is sown a natural body, I will raise a 
spiritual body. This very flesh of yours, this corrupt- 



ible flesh, shall put on incorruption, and this mor- 
tal shall put on immortality. Death shall "be swal- 
lowed up in victory, and mortality of life. Fear not, 

my children. Come, and I will show you the ene- 
my that you dreaded. See, Here lies the king of ter- 
rors, like Sisera in the tent, fastened to the ground 
with the nail struck through his temples. Behold 
the grateful present, the head of your enemy in a 
charger : I bequeath you your conquered adversary, 
and make over death as your legacy. death, where 
is thy sting? where now is thine armor wherein thou 
trustedst ? Come, my people, enter into your cham- 
bers ; come to your beds of dust, and lay you down 
in peace, and let your flesh rest in hope ; for even in 
this flesh shall you see God. ye slain of death, 
your carcasses, now as loathsome as the carrion in the 
ditch, will I redeem from the power of the grave, and 
fashion those vile bodies like unto the glorious body 
of your exalted Redeemer. Look, if you can, on the 
sun when shining in his strength : with such dazzling 
glory will I clothe you, ye of little faith. 

From the terrible dungeon of eternal darkness do 

1 hereby free you. Fear not, you shall not be hurt 
of the second death ; you are delivered from the wrath 
to come, and shall never come into condemnation. 
The flames of Tophet shall not be able to singe the 
hair of your heads, no, nor the smell of fire pass 
upon you. Stand upon the brink, and look down into 
the horrible pit, the infernal prison from whence 1 
have freed you. See you how the smoke of their tor- 
ments ascendeth for ever? Hear you the cursings 


and ravings, the roarings and blasphemies? What 
think you of those hellish fiends? would you have 
been willing to have them for your companions and 
tormentors ? What think you of those chains of dark- 
ness, of the river of brimstone, of the instruments of 
torment for soul and body, of those weepings and 
wailings and gnashing of teeth? Can you think of 
an everlasting banishment, of a sentence, " G-o, ye 
cursed?" Could you dwell with everlasting burn- 
ings, could you abide with devouring fire ? This is 
the inheritance you were born to. But I have cut 
off the entail, and wrought for you a great salvation. 
I have' not ordained you to wrath, but my thoughts 
towards you are thoughts of peace. 

Here I deliver you your protection. From all 
your enemies will I save you. I grant you a protec- 
tion from the arrests of the law: your Surety hath 
fully answered it ; my justice is satisfied, my wrath 
is pacified, my honor is repaired. Behold, I am near 
that justify you; who is he that shall condemn you? 

From the usurped dominion of the powers of dark- 
ness. I will tread Satan shortly under you, and will 
set your feet in triumph upon the necks of your ene- 
mies. Let not your hearts be troubled, though you 
are to wrestle with principalities and powers, and the 
rulers of the darkness of this world; for stronger is 
He that is in you, than he that is in the world. He 
may bruise your heel, but you shall bruise his head. 
Behold your Redeemer leading captivity captive, spoil- 
ing principalities and powers, and triumphing over 
them openly in his cross. See how Satan falleth like 


lightning from heaven, and the Samson of your salva- 
tion beareth away the gates of hell, posts and all, upon 
his shoulders, and setteth them up as trophies of his 
victory : how he pulleth out the throat of the lion, and. 
lifteth up the heart of the traitor upon the top of his 
spear, and washeth his hands, and dyeth his robes in 
the blood of those your enemies. 

From the victory of the world. Neither its frowns 
nor its flatteries shall be too hard for your victorious 
faith. Though it raise up Egypt and Amalek and 
Moab, and all its armies against you, yet it shall 
never keep you out of Canaan. Be of good comfort, 
your Lord hath overcome the world. Though its 
temptations be very powerful, yet this, upon my faith- 
fulness, will I promise you, that no such shall come 
upon you, but what you shall be able to bear. But 
if I see such trials as would be too hard for your 
graces, and overthrow your souls, I will never suffer 
them to come upon you ; nay, I will make your ene- 
my to serve you, and do bequeath the world as part 
of your dowry to you. 

From the curse of the cross. Affliction shall prove 
a wholesome cup to you; your Lord hath drunk the 
venom into his own body, and what remains for you 
is but a healthful potion, which I will promise you 
shall work for your good. Be not afraid to drink, nor 
desire the cup should pass from you : I bless the cup 
before I give it unto you. Drink you all of it, and 
be thankful; you shall find my blessing at the bottom 
of the cup, to sweeten the sharpest afflictions to you. 
I will stand by you in all conditions, and be a fast 



friend to you in every change. In the wilderness I 
will speak comfortably to you, and. in the fire and in 
the water I will he with you. I will he a strength to 
the poor, and a strength to the needy in his distress ; 
a refuge from the storm, and a shadow from the heat, 
when the Hast of terrible ones is as a storm against 
the wall. Your sufferings shall not he a cup of 
wrath, hut a grace cup; not a curse, hut a cure; 
not a cup of trembling, but a. cup of blessing to you. 
They shall not hurt you, but heal you. My blessing 
shall attend you in every condition. I say not only, 
Blessed shall you be in your basket, and. blessed in 
your store ; but blessed shall you be in your poverty, 
and blessed shall you be in your straits: not only 
blessed shall you be in your cities, and blessed shall 
you be in your fields ; but blessed shall you be in 
your bonds, and blessed shall you be in your banish- 
ment. Blessed shall you be when you are persecuted, 
and when you are reviled, and your name is cast out 
-as evil; yea, then doubly blessed. My choicest bless- 
ings, greatest good, and richest sweets, will I put into 
your evil things. These happy immunities, these 
glorious liberties of the sons of God, by this immuta- 
ble charter I do for ever settle upon you ; and do in, 
and with my covenant, unalterably, irrevocably, ever- 
lastingly convey unto you, and confirm upon you. 

2. Yea, I will not only free you from your miseries, 
but will confer upon you ROYAL PRIVILEGES AND PRE- 
ROGATIVES, and instate you into higher and greater 
happiness than ever you have fallen from. Lo, I give 
myself to you, and all things with myself. X 


Behold, ye sons of men ; behold, and wonder. 
Be astonished, heavens; be moved, ye strong 
foundations of the earth; for you shall be my wit- 
nesses. This day do I by covenant bestow myself 
upon my servants. I will be your Gfod for ever and 
ever your own God. Nothing in the world is so 
much your own as I. The houses that you have built, 
that you have bought, are not so much yours as I am. 
Here you are tenants at will; but I am your eternal 
inheritance. These are loans for a season, but I am 
your dwelling-place in all generations. You have 
nowhere so great a proprietorship, so sure and unal- 
terable a claim, as you have here. "What do you 
count your own ? Do you count your bodies your 
own, your souls your own ? Nay, these are not your 
own ; they are bought with a price. But you may 
boldly, make your claim to me ; you may freely chal- 
lenge an interest in me. Come near, and fear not ; 
where should you be free, if not with your own ? 
where should you be bold, if not at home ? You are 
never in all the world so much at home as when you 
are with me. You may freely make use of me, or of 
any of my attributes, whenever you need. I will be 
all to you that you can wish. 

I will be a Friend to you. My secrets shall be with 
you, and you shall have all freedom of access to me, 
and liberty to pour out all your hearts into my bosom. 

I will be a Physician to you. I will heal your 
backslidings, and cure all your diseases. Fear not ; 
never did soul miscarry that left itself in my hands, 
and would but follow my prescriptions.^ 


I will be a Shepherd to you. Be not afraid of 
evil tidings, for I am with you ; my rod and my staff 
shall comfort you.- You shall not want, for I will 
feed you ; you shall not wander, to he lost, for I will 
restore you. I will cause you to lie down in green 
pastures, and lead you beside the still waters. I will 
gather you with my arm, and carry you in my bosom, 
and will lead on softly, as the flock and the children 
are able to endure. If officers be careless, I will do 
the work myself. I will seek that which was lost, 
and bring again that which was driven away, and 
bind up that which was broken, and strengthen that 
which 'was sick; but I will destroy the fat and the 
strong, and will feed them with judgment. I will 
watch over my flock by night. Behold, I have ap- 
pointed my ministers as your watchmen, and over- 
seers that watch for your souls. Yea, mine angels 
shall be your watchers, and shall keep a constant 
guard upon my flock. And if peradventure the ser- 
vants should sleep, mine own eyes shall keep a perpet- 
ual watch over you, by night and by day. The Keeper 
of Israel never slumbereth, nor sleepeth, nor withdraw- 
eth his eyes from the righteous. I will guide you with 
mine eye ; I will never trust you out of my own sight. 

I will be a Sovereign to you. The Lord is your 
judge, the Lord is your lawgiver, the Lord is your 
king. Fear not the unrighteousness of men, I. will 
judge your cause, I will defend your rights. You 
shall not stand at man's bar ; you shall not be cast at 
their vote : let them curse, I will bless ; let them con- 
demn, I will justify. When you come upon trial for 


your lives, to have your eternal state decided, yon 
shall see your Friend, your Father, upon the tench. 
Into my hands shall your cause he cast, and you shall 
surely stand in judgment, and he found at the right 
hand among the sheep, and hear the King say, Come 
ye "blessed, inherit the kingdom. 

I will be a Husband to you. In loving-kindness, 
and in mercies, will I hetroth you unto me for ever. 
I will espouse your interest, and will be as one with 
you, and you with me. You shall be for me, and not 
for another; and I also will be for you. Though I 
found you as a helpless infant exposed in its blood, 
all your unworthiness doth not discourage me. Lo, 
I have looked upon you, and put my comeliness upon 
you. Moreover, I swear unto you, and enter into 
covenant with you, and you shall be mine. Behold, 
I do, as it were, put myself out of my own power, and 
do here solemnly, in this my marriage-covenant, make 
away myself to you, and with myself all things. I 
will be an everlasting portion to you. Lift up now 
your eyes eastward and westward and northward and 
southward. Have you not a worthy portion, a goodly 
heritage ? Can you cast up your riches, or count your 
own happiness ? Can you fathom immensity, or reach 
omnipotenoy, or comprehend eternity? All this is 
yours. I will set open all my treasures to you, I 
will keep back nothing from you. 

II. All the attributes in the Godhead, and all the 
persons in the Grodhead, do I hereby make over to 
you. I will be yours in all my ESSENTIAL PERFECTIONS, 
and in all my PERSONAL RELATIONS. t 


1. In all my ESSENTIAL PERFECTIONS. -My eternity 
shall "be the date of your happiness I am the eternal 
(rod, and while I am, I will be life and "blessedness to 
you. I will be a never- failing fountain of joy arid 
peace and bliss unto you. I am the first and the last, 
that was, and is, and is to come, and my eternal 
power and godhead shall be bound to you. I will be 
your Grod, your Father, your Friend, while I have any 
being. I have made my everlasting choice in choos- 
ing you. Fear not, for the eternal Grod is your refuge, 
and underneath are the everlasting arms. My durable 
riches and righteousness shall be yours. Though all 
should forsake you. yet will I not forsake you. "When 
the world and all that is therein shall be burnt up, I 
will be a standing portion for you. When you are 
forgotten among the dead, with everlasting loving- 
kindness will I remember you. 

My uncliangeableness shall be the rock of your 
rest. When all the world is like the tumbling ocean 
round about you, here you may fix and settle. I am 
your resting-place. The immutability of my nature, 
and of my counsel, and of my covenant, are sure foot- 
ing for your faith, and a firm foundation for your strong 
and everlasting consolation. When you are afflicted, 
tossed with tempests, and not comforted, take refuge 
in me : I am a haven of hope, I am a harbor of rest 
for you ; here cast your anchors, and you shall never 
be moved. 

My omnipotence shall be your guard. I am Grod 
Almighty, your almighty Protector, your almighty 
Benefactor. What though your enemies are many? 


more are they that are with you, than ihey that are 
against you ; for I am with you. "What though they 
are mighty, they are not almighty. Your Father is 
greater than all, and none shall pluck you out of my 
hands. Who can hinder my power, or obstruct my 
salvation? "Who is like unto the God of Jeshurun, 
who rideth on the heaven for your help, and in his 
excellency on the sky? I am the sword of your 
strength, and the shield of your excellency. I am your 
rock and your fortress, your deliverer, your strength, 
the horn of your salvation, and your high tower. I 
will maintain you against all the power of the enemy. 
You shall never sink, if omnipotence can support 
you. The gates of hell shall not prevail against you. 
Your enemies shall find hard work of it. They shall, 
overcome victory, or enervate omnipotence, or cor- 
rupt fidelity, or change immutability, or else they 
cannot finally prevail against you; either they shall 
bow or break. Though they should exalt themselves 
as the eagle, though they should set their nest among 
the stars, even thence will I bring them down, saith 
the Lord. 

My faithfulness shall be your security; my truth, 
yea, my oath shall fail if ever you come off losers by 
me. I will make you to confess, when you see the 
issue and upshot of all my providences, that I was a 
God worthy to be trusted, worthy to be believed, wor- 
thy to be rested in and relied upon. If you walk not 
in my judgments, you must look for my threats and 
frowns, yea, and blows too ; and you shall see that I 
am not in jest with you, nor will indulge you in your 


sins. Nevertheless my loving-kindness will I never 
take from you, nor suffer my faithfulness to fail. My 
covenant will I not break, nor alter the thing .that is 
gone out of my lips. 

My mercies shall be your store. I am the Father 
of mercies, and such a Father I will be to you. I 
am the fountain of mercies, and this fountain shall be 
ever open to you. My mercies are very many, and 
they shall be multiplied towards you ; very great, and 
they shall be magnified 'upon you; very sure, and 
they shall be for ever sure to you ; very tender, and 
they shall be infinitely tender of you. Though the 
fig-tree 'do not blossom, nor the vine bear, nor the 
flock bring forth, fear not, for my compassions fail 
not. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow you all 
the days of your lives. Even to your old age I am he, 
and even to hoar hairs will I carry you : I have made, 
and I 'will bear, even I will carry .and deliver you: I 
will make an everlasting covenant with you, that I 
will not turn away from you to do you good that I 
will show you the kindness of Grod. I can as soon 
forget to be Grod, as forget to be gracious. While my 
name is Jehovah, merciful, gracious, long-suffering, 
abundant in goodness and truth, I will never forget 
to show mercy to you. All my ways towards you 
shall be mercy and truth. I have sworn that I would 
not be wroth with you, nor rebuke you ; for the moun- 
tains shall depart, and the hills be removed, but my 
kindness shall not depart from you, neither shall the 
covenant of my peace be removed, saith the Lord that 
hath mercy on you. 


My omniscience shall be your overseer ; mine eyes 
shall be ever open, observing your wants to relieve 
them, and your wrongs to avenge them. Mine ears 
shall be ever open to hear the prayers of my poor, the 
cries of mine oppressed, the clamors, calumnies, and 
reproaches of your enemies. Surely I have seen your, 
affliction, and know your sorrows. And shall not God 
avenge his own elect ? I will avenge them speedily. 
I see the secret plots and designs of your enemies 
against you, and will disannul their counsels. I see 
your secret integrity, and the uprightness of your 
hearts towards me, while the carnal and censorious 
world condemn you as hypocrites. Your secret pray- 
ers, fasts, and tears, which the world knoweth not of, 
I observe them, and record them. Your secret care 
to please me, your secret pains with your own hearts, 
your secret self-searchings and self-denial, I see them 
all; your Father which seeth in secret shall reward 
them openly. 

My wisdom shall be your counsellor. If any lack 
wisdom, let him ask of me, and it shall be given him. 
I will be your deliverer. When you are in darkness, I 
will be a light to you. I will make your way plain be- 
fore you. You are but short-sighted, but I will be eyes 
to you. I will watch over you, to bring upon you all 
the good I have promised, and to keep off all the evil 
you fear, or to turn it into good. You shall have your 
food in its season, and your medicine in its season 
mercies, afflictions, a?i suitable, and in their season. ] 
will outwit your enemies, and make their oracles to 
speak but folly. The old serpent shall not deceive you. 


I will acquaint you with Ms devices. The deceitful 
hearts you fear shall not undo you; I will discover their 
wiles. I know how to deliver the godly out of tempta- 
tion, and to reserve the unjust to the day of judgment 
to be punished. Trust in me with all your hearts, and 
lean not to your own understanding. I am Grod that 
performeth all things for you. I will forfeit the rep- 
utation of my wisdom, if I make you not to acknow- 
ledge, when you see the end of the Lord though at 
present you wonder, and reach . not the meaning of 
my proceedings that all my works are in weight and 
in number and in time and in order ; if I cause you 
not to cry out, Manifold are thy works, in wisdom 
hast thou made them all. 

My justice shall "be your avenger and rewarder. 
Fear not to approach ; fury is not in me. My justice 
is not only appeased towards you, hut engaged for 
you. I am so fully satisfied in the sacrifice of my 
Beloved, that justice itself, which was as a flaming 
sword drawn against you, doth now greatly befriend 
you ; and that which was an amazing, confounding 
terror, shall now become your relief and consolation. 
Under all your oppressions, here shall your refuge be. 
Let me know your grievances ; my justice shall right 
your wrongs, and reward your services. You may 
conclude upon your pardons, conclude upon your 
crowns, conclude upon reparation for all your injuries, 
and all from the sweet consideration of my justice, 
the thought of which to others is as the horror of the 
shadow of death. If you sin, despair not ; remember, 
I am just to forgive you. If you are at any pains or 


cost for me, do not count it lost ; for I am not unright- . 
ecus to forget 'you. I am the righteous Judge, that 
have laid up for. you, and will set on you the crown 
of righteousness. Are you reviled, persecuted, 'de- 
famed? Forget not that I am righteous to .render 
tribulation to them that trouble you, and to you that 
are troubled, rest with rne. Though all your services 
and sufferings deserve not the least good at my hands, 
yet as I have freely .passed my promise to reward 
them, so I will as justly keep it. 

My omnipresence shall be company, for you. . Surely 
I will be with you, to bless you. ISfo bolts, nor bars, 
nor bonds, nor banishment shall remove you from 
me, nor keep my presence and the influences of heav- 
en from you. I am always with you : in your dark- 
est nights, in your deepest dangers, I am at hand with 
you, a very present help in the time of trouble. I am 
not a Grod afar off, or asleep, or in a journey, when 
you need my counsel, mkie ear, or mine aid : I am 
always nigh unto them that fear me. No Patmos, no 
prison shall hinder the presence of my grace from 
you. My presence shah 1 perfume the most noisome 
cell, and lighten the darkest dungeon where you can 
be thrust. 

My holiness shall be a fountain of grace to you. 
I am the G-od of hope, the God of love, the God of 
patience, the author and finisher of faith, the Grod of 
all grace, and I will give grace to you. My design is 
to make you partakers of my holiness. I will be a 
constant spring of spiritual life to you. The water 
that I shall give you, shall be in you a well of water 


springing up into everlasting life. The. seed of life 
that I shall ,put into you, shall he so fed and cherished 
and maintained by my power, that it shall be immor- 
tal; The unction that you shall receive from the Holy 
One shall abide in you, and teach you all things ne- 
cessary for you ; and as it hath taught you, you shall 
abide in him. You shall flourish in the courts of your 
G-od. Yea, I will satisfy your souls in drought, and 
make fat your bones, and you shall be like a watered 
garden. Lo, I will be as the dew unto you, and you 
shall grow as the lily, and cast forth your roots as 
Lebanon ; and your branches shall spread, and your 
beauty shall be as the olive-tree. You shall still 
bring forth fruit in old age, you shall be fat and flour- 

My sovereignty shall be commanded by you. You 
shall be my favorites, men of power, to prevail with 
me. All my attributes shall be at the command of 
your prayers. 

In sum, ray all-sufficiency shall be the lot of your 
inheritance. My fulness is your treasure. My house 
is your home. You may come as freely to my store, 
- as to your own cupboard. You may have your hand 
as freely in my treasures, as in your own purses. 
You cannot ask too much, you cannot look for too 
much from me. I will give you, or be myself to 
you instead of, all comforts. You shall have chil- 
dren, or I will be better to you than ten children. 
You shall have riches, or I will be more to you than 
all riches. 

You shall have friends, if best for you, or else I 


will be your comforter in your solitude, your counsel- 
lor in your distress. If you leave father or mother, 
or houses or lands, for my sake, you shall have a 
hundred-fold in me, even in this time. When your 
enemies shall remove your comforts, it shall he hut as 
the letting the cistern run and opening the fountain, 
or putting out the candles and letting in the sun. 
The swelling of the waters shall raise higher the ark 
of your comfort. I will be the staff of bread to you, 
your life, and the strength of your clays. I will be 
the house and home to you, you shall dwell with me ; 
yea, dwell in me, and I in you. I will stand and 
fall with you. I will repair your losses, and relieve 
your needs. Can you bum out the lamp of heaven, 
or lave out the boundless ocean with your hands? 
Why, the sun shall be dark and the sea be dry, before 
the Father of lights, the fountain of mercies shall be 
exhausted. Behold, though the world hath been 
spending upon the stock of my mercy ever since I 
created man upon earth, yet it runs with full stream 
still. My sun doth diffuse its rays and disburse its 
light, and yet shines as bright as ever : much more 
can I dispense of my goodness, and fill my creatures 
brimful and running over, and yet have never the 
less in myself: and till this all-sufficiency be spent, 
you shall never be undone. I am the God of Abra- 
ham, and of Isaac, and of Jacob, and whatever I was 
to them, I will be to you. 

Are you in want ? you know whither to go. I am 
ever at home ; you shall not go away empty from my 
door. Never distract yourselves with cares and fears, 


but make known your requests by prayer and suppli- 
cation unto me. I will help when all things else 
fail. When friends fail, and hearts fail, when your 
eyestrings crack and your heartstrings crack, when 
your acquaintance leave you and your souls leave 
you, my hosom shall he open to you. I will lock up 
your dust, I will receive your souls. 

And my infiniteness shall he the extent of your 
inheritance. Can you by searching find out G-od ; 
can you find out the Almighty to perfection ? It is 
high as heaven, what can you do? deeper than hell, 
what can you know ? This height incomprehensible, 
this depth unfathomable, shall be all yours, for ever 
yours. I am your' inheritance which no line can 
measure, no arithmetic can value, no - surveyor can 
describe. Lift up now your eyes to the ancient moun- 
tains, and to the utmost bounds of the everlasting 
hills: all that you can see is yours; but your short 
sight cannot ken the moiety-of what I give you;, and 
when you see and know most, you are no less than 
infinitely short of the discovery of : your own riches. 
Job 26 : 14. 

2. Yea, further, I will.be yours in all my PER- 

I am the everlasting Father, and I will be a Fa- 
ther to you. I take you for my sons and daughters. 
Behold, I receive you not as servants, but as sons to 
abide in my hou.se for ever. Whatever love or. care 
children may look for from their father, that may you 
expect from me ; and so much more as I am wiser 
and greater and better than any earthly parents. If 

Heaven Opened. J 3 


earthly fathers will give good things to -their children, 
much more will I give to you. If such cannot forget 
their children, much less will I forget you. What 
would my children have ? Your Father's heart, and 
your Father's house ; your Father's care, and your 
Father's ear ; your Father's bread, and your Father's 
rod : these shall he all yours. 

You shall have my fatherly affection; my heart I 
share among you, my tenderest love I bestow upon 

My fatherly compassion. As a father pitieth his 
children, so will I pity you. I will consider your 
frame, and not be extreme to mark what is done amiss 
by you, but cover all with the mantle of my excusing 

My fatherly instruction. I will cause you to hear 
the sweet voice behind you saying, This is the way. 
I will be tender of your weakness, and inculcate mine 
admonitions, line upon line, and feed you with milk 
when you cannot digest stronger meat. I will instruct 
you, and guide you with mine eye. 

My fatherly protection. In my fear is strong con- 
fidence, and my children shall have a place of refuge. 
My name shall be your strong tower, to which you 
may at all times fly and be safe. To your strong- 
hold, ye prisoners of hope. I am an open refuge, a 
near and inviolable refuge for you. 

My fatherly provision. Be not afraid of want; in 
your Father's house there is bread enough. I will 
care for your bodies. Be not anxious what you shall 
eat, drink, or put on. Let it suffice you that your 


heavenly Father knoweth that you have need of ah 1 
things. I will provide for your souls, meat for them, 
and mansions for them, and portions for them. Be- 
hold, I have spread the table of my gospel for you, 
with privileges and comforts that no man taketh from 
you. I have set before you the bread of life, and the 
tree of life, and the water of life. Eat, friends ; 
drink abundantly, '0 beloved. But all this is but a 
taste of what I have prepared. You must have but 
smiles and hints now, and be contented with glimpses 
and glances here ; but you shall be shortly taken up 
into your Father's bosom, and live for ever in the full- 
est views of his glory. 

My fatherly probation. I will chasten you because 
I love you, that you may not be condemned with the 

My Son I give unto you, in a marriage-covenant 
for ever. I make him over to you as wisdom, for your 
illumination; righteousness, for your justification; 
sanctification, for the curing of your corruptions ; re- 
demption, for your deliverance from your enemies. I 
bestow him upon you with all his fulness, all his mer- 
its, and all his graces. He shall be yours in all his 
offices. I have anointed him for a Prophet. Are you 
ignorant, he shall teach you ; he shall be eye-salve to 
you. I have sent him to preach the gospel to the 
poor, and recovering of sight to the blind ; to set at 
liberty them that are bruised. I have established him 
by oath, as' a Triest for ever. If any sin, he shall be 
your Advocate ; he shall expiate your guilt, and make 
the atonement. Have you any sacrifice, any service 


to offer, bring it unto him, and you shall receive an 
answer of peace. 

Present your petitions by his hand, him will I 
accept. Having such a High-priest over the house 
of God, you may come and welcome ; come with bold- 
ness. Him have I set up as King upon my holy hill 
of Zion. He shall rule you, he shall defend you. He 
is the King of righteousness, King 'of peace ; and such 
a King shall he be to you. I will set up his standard 
for you; I will set up his throne in you. He shall 
reign in righteousness, and rule in judgment ; and he 
shall be a hiding-place from the wind, and a covert 
from the tempest, and the shadow of a great rock in 
a weary land. He shall hear your causes and judge 
your enemies, and reign till he hath put all under his 
feet ; yea, and under your feet ; for they shall be as 
ashes under you, and you shall tread them, saith the 
Lord of hosts. Yea, I will undo them that afflict you, 
and all they that despised you shall bow themselves 
down at the soles of your feet. And you shall go forth 
and behold the carcasses of the men that have tres- 
passed against me ; for their worm shall not die, nei- 
ther shall their fire be quenched ; and they shall be an 
abhorring to all flesh. Isa. 66 : 24. 

My Spirit do I give unto you for your Counsellor 
and your Comforter. He shall be a constant inmate 
witluyou, and shall dwell in you and abide with you 
for ever. I consecrate you as temples to his holiness. 
He shall be your guide, he shall lead you into all 
truth. He shall be your advocate to indite your 
prayers, and make intercession for you, and shall fill 


your months with the arguments that he knows will 
prevail with me. He shall be oil to your wheels, and 
strength to your ancles, wine to your hearts, and 
marrow to your hones, and wind to your sails. He 
shall witness your adoption. . He shall seal you to the 
day of redemption, and "be to you the earnest of your 
inheritance, until the redemption of the purchased pos- 

III. And as I give you myself, so much more all 
things with myself. Earth and heaven, life and death, 


1. THINGS PRESENT are yours : lo, I give you Ca- 
leh's blessing, the upper springs and the nether springs. 
I will bless you with all spiritual blessings in heavenly 
places in Christ. To you pertaineth the adoption, and 
the glory, and the covenants, and the service of God, 
and the promises. To you will I give the white stone 
and the new name, access into my presence, the ac- 
ceptation of your persons, the audience of your pray- 
ers. Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto 
you. I will keep you to the end, and then crown my 
own gift with eternal life. I have made you heirs of 
Grod, and coheirs with your Lord Jesus Christ, and 
you shall inherit all things. 

I have granted you my angels for your guardians. 
The courtiers of heaven shall. attend upon you; they 
shall be all ministering spirits for your good. Behold, 
I have given them charge over you, upon their fidelity 
to look after you, and, as tender nurses, to bear you in 
their arms, and to keep you from coming to any hurt.. 
These shall be as the careful shepherds, to watch over 


my flock by night, and to encamp round about my 

My ministers I give for your guides. Paul, Apol- 
los, Cephas, all are yours. I am always with them, 
and they shall he always with you to the end of the 
world. You shah 1 have pastors after my own heart, 
and this shall be my covenant with you, that my 
Spirit which is upon yon, and my words which I 
have put into your mouth, shall not depart out of 
your mouth, nor the mouth of your seed, nor of your 
seed's seed, from henceforth and for ever. In short, 
ah 1 my officers shall be for profiting and perfecting 
you. All my ordinances shall be for edifying and 
saving you. The very severities of my house,, ad- 
monitions, censures, and the whole discipline of my 
family, shall be for preventing your infection, curing 
your corruption, procuring your salvation. 

My word- have I ordained for converting your 
souls, enlightening your eyes, rejoicing your hearts, 
cautioning you of dangers, cleansing your defilements, 
and conforming you to my image. To you I commit 
the oracles of G-od. Here you shall be furnished 
against temptations, hence you shall be comforted 
under distresses and afflictions. Here you shall find 
ray whole counsel. This shall instruct you in your 
way, correct you in your wanderings, direct you into 
the truths to be believed, detect to you the errors to 
be rejected. 

My ordinances I give you as the pledges of my 
love. You shall freely claim them, they are children's 
bread. Lo, I have given them to certify to you all 


that I have here promised you ; and when these sacred 
signs are delivered unto you, then know, and remem- 
ber, and consider in your hearts, that I therein plight 
you my truth, and set to my hand, and do thereby 
ratify and confirm every article of these indentures, 
and do actually deliver into your own hands this glo- 
rious charter, with all its immunities and privileges, 
as your own. for ever. 

And having sowed to you so largely in spiritual 
blessings, shall you not much more reap the temporal? 
Be you not of doubtful mind; all these-things shall be 
added unto you. My creatures I grant for your, ser- 
vants and supplies. Heaven and earth shall minister 
to you. All the stars in their courses shall serve you, 
and, if need be, shall fight for you. And I will make 
my covenant for you with the beasts of the field, and 
with the fowls of heaven ; and you shall be in league 
with the stones of the field, and all shall be at peace 
with you. I will undertake for all your necessities.. 
Do I feed the fowls, and clothe the grass, and do you 
think I will neglect my children ? I hear the young 
ravens when they cry ; shall I not much more fulfil 
the desires of them that fear me ? Fear not, you shall 
be sure to want no good thing ; and you would not 
yourselves' desire riches, pleasures, or preferment, to 
your hurt. I will give meat to them that fear me : I 
will be ever mindful of my covenant. My providen- 
ces shall cooperate to your good. The cross winds 
shall blow you the sooner and swifter into your har- 
bor. You shall be preferred, when you seem most 
debased ; shall be greatest gainers, when you seem 


to be deepest losers, and shall most effectually pro- 
mote your good, when you seem most to deny it. 

2. THINGS TO GOME are yours : the perfecting of your 
souls, the redemption of your "bodies, the consumma- 
tion of your "bliss. "When you have glorified me for a 
while on earth, and finished the work I have given 
you to do, you shall be caught up into paradise, and 
rest from your labors, and your works shall follow 
you. I will send of my own life-guard to conduct 
home your departing souls, and receive you among 
the spirits of just men made perfect. And you shall 
look back upon Pharaoh, and all his host, and see 
your enemies dead upon the shore. Then shall be 
your redemption from all your afflictions, and all your 
corruptions. The thorn in the flesh shall be pulled 
out, and your hour of temptation, shall be over for 

The sweat shall be wiped from your brows, and 
the day of refreshing shall come, and you shall sit 
down for ever under my shadow. For the Lamb that 
is in the midst of the throne shall feed you, and lead 
you to living fountains of water. 

The tears shall be wiped away from your eyes, 
and there shall be no more sorrow nor crying, neither 
shall there be any more pain ; for the former things 
are passed away, and behold I make all things new. 
I will change Marah into Naomi, the cup of sor- 
row into the cup of salvation, and the bread and 
water of affliction into the wine of eternal consolation. 
You shall take down your harps from the willows, and 
I will turn your tears into pearls, and your peniten- 


tial psalms into songs of deliverance. You shall 
change your Ichabods into hosannas, and your ejacu- 
lations of sorrow into hallelujahs of joy. 

The cross shall he taken off from your backs, and 
you shall come out of your great tribulations, and 
wash your robes and make them white in the blood 
of the Lamb ; and you shall be before the throne 
of G-od, and serve him night and day in his temple; 
and he that sitteth on the throne shall dwell among 
you, and you shall hunger no more, and thirst no 
more, neither shall the sun light upon you, nor any 

The load shall be taken off from your consciences. 
Sins and doubts shall no more defile you or distress 
you. I will make an end of sin, and knock off the 
fetters of your corruptions, and you shall be a glorious 
church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing ; 
but you shall be holy and without blemish. 

Thus shall you be brought to the King all glorious, 
in raiment of needle- work, and clothing of gold ; with 
gladness and rejoicing shall you be brought, and enter 
into the king's palace. So shall the beloved of the 
Lord dwell safely by him, and you shall stand con- 
tinually before him, and behold the beauty of the 
Lord, and hear his wisdom. Then will I open in you 
an everlasting spring of joy, and you shall break forth 
into singing, and never cease more, nor rest day or 
night, saying, Holy, holy, holy. 

Thus shall the grand enemy expire with your dy- 
ing breath, and the body of death be put off with your 
mortal body ; and the day of your death shall be the 



birthday of your glories. Have faith in G-od. "Wait 
but a little, and sorrow shall cease, and sin be no 

And then a little longer, and jieath shall be no 
more; but your last enemy shall be destroyed, and 
your victory completed. Yet a little while, and He 
that shall come, will come, and you also shall appear 
with him in glory. This same Jesus which is taken 
from you into heaven, shall so come as he went up, 
into heaven ; and when he cometh, he will receive you 
to himself, that where he is, there you may be also. 
Behold his sign : he cometh in the clouds of heaven 
with power and great glory ; and every eye shall see 
him, and all the tribes of the earth shall mourn be- 
cause of him ; but you shall lift up your heads, because 
the day of your redemption draweth nigh. Then shall 
he sound his trump, and make you hear his voice in 
your dust, and shall send his mighty angels to gather 
you from the four winds of heaven, who shall carry 
you in the triumphant chariot of the clouds, to meet 
your Lord ; and you shall be prepared for him, and 
presented to him, as a bride adorned for her husband,. 
And as you have borne the image of the earthly, so 
shall you bear the image of the heavenly; and you. 
shall be fully conformed both in body and spirit to 
your glorious Head. Then shall he confess you be- 
fore his angels, and you shall receive your open abso- 
lution before all flesh, and be owned, approved, and 
applauded in the public audience of the general assem- 
bly. And you shall be with all royal solemnities es- 
poused unto the King of -glory, in the presence of all 


his shining courtiers, to the envy and/terror of your 

So shall your Lord with his own hand crown you, 
and set you on thrones ; and you shall judge men and 
angels, and you shall have power over the nations, and 
you shall set your feet upon the . necks of your ene- 
mies. Lo, I have set the very day for your instal- 
ment, I have provided your crowns, I have prepared the 
kingdom. Wherefore do you doubt, ye of little faith? 
these are the true sayings of God. Are you sure that 
you are now on earth ? so surely shall you be shortly 
with me in heaven. Are you sure that you shall die ? 
so surely shall you rise again in glory. Lo, I have 
said it, and who shall reverse it ? You shall see me 
face to face, and "be with me where I am, and "behold 
my glory. For I will be glorified in my saints, and 
admired in all them that "believe ; and all flesh shall 
know that I have loved you. For I will make you the 
trophies of my grace, in whom the whole world shall 
see how unutterably the Almighty G-od can advance 
the poor worm's meat and dust of the ground. And 
the despisers shall behold and wonder and perish; for 
they shall be witnesses to the riches of my magnifi- 
cence and the exceeding greatness of my power. They 
shall go away into everlasting punishment, but you 
into life eternal ; for no sooner shall their sentence be 
passed, but the court shall rise, and the Judge shall 
return with all his glorious train ; with sound of trum- 
pet and shouts incredible shall he ascend, and shall 
lead you to your Father's house. Then shall the tri- 
umphal arches lift up their heads, and the everlasting 


gates stand open, and the heavens shall receive you 
< all, and so shall you he ever with the Lord. 

And now will I rejoice over you with singing, and 
rest in ray love ; and heaven shall ring with joys and 
acclamations, hecause I have received you safe and 
sound. And in that day you shall know that I am a 
re warder of them that diligently seek me; and that 
I did record your words, and bottle your tears, and 
tell your wanderings, and keep an account, even to a 
- cup of cold water, of whatever you said or did for my 
name. You shall surely find that nothing is lost ; but 
you shall have full measure, pressed down and running 
over, thousands of years in paradise, for the least good 
thought, and thousand thousands for the least good 
word ; and then the reckoning shall begin again, till 
all arithmetic be nonplussed. For you shall be swal- 
lowed up in a blessed eternity, and the doors of heav- 
. en shall be shut upon you, and there shall be no more 
going out. 

The glorious choir of my holy angels, the goodly 
fellowship of my blessed prophets, the happy society 
of triumphant apostles, the royal hosts of victorious 
martyrs, these shall be your companions for ever. 
And you shall come in white robes, with palms in 
your hands, every one having the harps of God, and 
golden vials full of odors, and shall cast your crowns 
before me, and strike in with the multitude of the 
heavenly hosts, glorifying (rod, and saying, Halle- 
lujah! the Lord God omnipotent reigneth. Blessing, 
honor, glory, power be unto Him that sitteth upon, 
the throne, and unto the Lamb for ever and ever. In 


short, I will make you equal to the angels of God, 
and you shall be the everlasting trumpets of my 
praise. You shall be abundantly satisfied with the 
fatness of my house, and I will make you drink of 
the rivers of my pleasures. You shall be an eternal 
excellency ; and if God can die, and eternity run out, 
then, and not else, shall your joys expire. For you 
shall see me as I am, and know me as you are known ; 
and shall behold my face in , righteousness, and be 
satisfied with my likeness. And you shall be the 
vessels of my glory, whose blessed use shall be to 
receive the overflowings of my goodness, and to have 
mine infinite love and glory poured out into you brim- 
. ful, and running over ' for evermore. Blessed is he 
that hath believed, for there shall be a performance of 
the things that have been told him. I the Lord have 
spoken it; you shall see my face, and my name shall 
be written in your foreheads; and you shall no more 
need the sun, nor the moon, for the Lord God shall 
give you light, and you shall reign for ever and ever. 

And as I give myself to you for your God, and all 
things with myself, so I take you for my covenant 
people, and you shall be mine in the day when I make 
up my jewels; and I will spare you as a man spareth 
his own son that serveth him. The Lord shall count 
when he writeth up the people, Surely they are my 
children. I do not only require you to be mine, if 
you would have me to be for you, but I do promise 
to make you mine, and to work in you the conditions 
which I require of you. I will circumcise your hearts 
to love me. I will take out the heart of stone. My 


laws will I write within you. Yet you must know 
that I will be sought unto for these things ; and as 
ever you expect to. partake of the mercies, I charge 
you to lie at the pool, and wait for my Spirit, and be 
diligent in the use of the means. 

I am content to abate the rigor of the old terms ; 
I shall not stand upon satisfaction. I have received 
a ransom, and do only expect your acceptance. I 
.shall not insist upon perfection. Walk before me, 
and be upright, and sincerity shall carry the crown. 
Yea, both the faith and obedience that I require of 
you are my own gifts. I require you to accept my 
Son by believing ; but I will give you a hand to take 
him, and to submit to, and obey him ; and I must 
and will guide your hand to write after him, and 
cause you to walk in my statutes. I will take you 
by the arms, and teach you to go ; I will order your 
steps. Yea, those things will I accept of you as the 
conditions of life, which, viewed in the strictness of 
my justice, would deserve eternal death. Grrace! 
Grace ! 


Amen, hallelujah. Be it to thy servants accord- 
ing to thy word. But who are we, and what is our 
Father's house, that thou hast brought us hitherto ? 
And now, Lord Grod, what shall thy servants say 
unto th.ee ? for we are silenced with wonder, and must 
sit down in astonishment, for we cannot utter the 
least tittle of thy praises. "What meaneth the height 
of this strange love? And whence is this unto us. 


that the Lord of heaven and earth should condescend 
to enter into covenant with his dust, and take into 
his bosom the viperous "brood that have so often spit 
their venom in his face? We are not worthy to be as 
the handmaids, to wash the feet of the servants of 
our Lord; how much less to be thy sons and heirs, 
and to he made partakers of all' these blessed liberties 
and privileges which thou hast settled upon us ! But 
for 'thy goodness' sake, and according to thine own 
heart, hast thou done all these great things. Even 
so, Father, because so it seemed good in thy sight., 

Wherefore thou art great, G-od, for there is none 
like thee, neither is there any G-od besides thee. And 
what nation on earth is like thy people, whom. God 
went to redeem for a people to himself, and to make 
him a name, and to do for them great things and. ter- 
rible ? For thou hast confirmed them to thyself, to be 
a people unto thee for ever, and thou, Lord, art be- 
come their G-od, even unto the end. 

Wonder, heavens, and be moved, earth, at 
this great thing ! For behold, the tabernacle of God 
is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they 
shall be his people, and God himself shall be with 
them, and be their God. Be astonished and ravished 
with wonder, for the infinite breach is made up; the 
offender is received, God and man reconciled, and a 
covenant of peace entered, and heaven and earth are 
all agreed upon the terms, and have struck their hands 
and sealed the indentures. happy conclusion ! 
blessed conjunction ! Shall the stars dwell with the 
dust, or the wide distant poles be brought to mutual 


embraces ? But here the distance of the terms is infi- 
nitely greater. B,ejoice, angels ; shout, seraphim; 
0, all ye friends of the Bridegroom, prepare an epitha- 
lamium, "be ready with the marriage-song. Lo, here 
is the wonder of wonders ; for Jehovah hath betrothed 
himself for ever to his hopeless captives, and owns the 
marriage before all the world, and is become one with 
us and we with him. He hath bequeathed to us the 
precious things of heaven above, and the precious 
things of the earth beneath, with the fulness thereof, 
and hath kept back nothing from us. 

And now, Lord, thou art that God, and thy 
words are true, and thou hast promised this goodness 
unto thy servants, and hast left us nothing to ask at 
thy hands but what thou hast already freely granted. 
Only thfe word which thou hast spoken concerning 
thy servants, establish it for ever, and do as thou hast 
said, and let thy name be magnified for ever, saying, 
The Lord of hosts, he is the Grod of Israel. Amen. 





YEA, hath. God said, I will be a God unto thee ? 
Is it true indeed ? "Will the Lord be mine ? Will he 
lay aside the controversy, and conclude a peace ? 
Will he receive the rebel to mercy, and open his doors 
to his prodigal ? I will surely go unto ray Father; I 
will take unto me words, and bow myself before his 
' footstool, and say, Lord, I have heard thy words, 
and do here lay hold on thy covenant. I accept the 
kindness of God, and will adventure myself upon thy 
fidelity, and trust my whole happiness here and here- 
after upon these thy promises. 

Farewell, deceitful world, get thee under my feet. 
Too long have I feared thy vain threats; too long 
have I been deluded with thy flattering promises. 
Canst thou promise me, or deny me such things as 
God hath covenanted to give me ? I know thou canst 
not, and therefore I renounce thee for ever from being 
the object of my faith, or fear. No longer will I lean 
to this rotten reed, no longer will I trust to this broken 
idol. Away, Satan, with thy tempting baits. In 
vain dost thou dress the harlot in her paint and brav- 

* By Rev. Joseph Alleine. 


ery; and tell me. All this will I give thee. Canst 
thou show me such a crown, such a kingdom as Grod 
has promised to settle upon me ; or that which will 
balance the loss of an infinite Grod, who here gives 
himself unto me? Away, deceitful lusts and pleas- 
ures, get you hence ; I have enough in Christ and his 
promise to give my soul full content; these have I 
lodged in my heart, and there is no longer room for 
such guests as you. Never shah 1 you have quiet enter- 
tainment more within these doors. 

Thou G-od of truth, I here take thee at thy word ; 
thou requirest hut my acceptance and consent, and 
here thou hast it. Grood is the word of the Lord 
which he hath spoken, and as my Lord hath said, so 
will thy servant do. My soul catcheth hold of thy 
promises. These have I taken as my heritage for 
ever. Let others gain the preferments and possessions 
of this world, it shall be enough for me to be an heir 
of thy promises. 

happy soul, how rich art thou ! "What a booty 
have ! gotten ! It is all mine own. I have the prom- 
ises of this life and of that which is to come. what 
can I wish more ? How full a charter is here ! Now 
my doubting soul may boldly and believingly say 
with Thomas, My Lord, and my God. What need 
we any further witness ? We have heard his words. 
He hath sworn by his holiness that his decree may 
not be changed, and hath signed it with his own 

Rejoice, ye heavens; strike up, ye celestial choirs. 
Help, heaven and earth. Sing unto the Lord, O.ye 


saints of his. Bless the Lord, my soul. had I 
the tongues of men and angels, all were too little for 
me. Had I ten thousand tongues, the whole were not 
sufficient to utter my Creator's praises. 

My Beloved is mine, and I am his. The grant is 
clear, and my claim is firm. "Who durst deny it, 
when God himself doth own it ? Is it a hard adven- 
ture to speak after Christ himself? Why, this is the 
message that he hath sent me : I ascend to my Fa- 
ther and your Father, my God and your Grod. He 
hath put words into my mouth, and hid me say, Our 

I believe ; Lord, help my unbelief. my G-od, 
and my Father, I accept thee with all humble thank- 
fulness, and am bold to take hold' of thee. my 
King and my God, I subject my soul and all its pow- 
ers to thee. my glory, in thee will I boast all the 
day. my rock, on thee will I build all my confi- 
dence" and my hopes. staff of my life, and strength 
of my heart, the life of my joys and joy of my life, 
I will sit and sing under thy shadow, and glory in thy 
holy name. 

my soul, arise and take possession. Inherit 
thy blessedness, and cast up thy riches. Thine is 
the kingdom, thine is the glory, and thine is the vic- 
tory. The whole Trinity is thine. All the persons 
in the Godhead, .all the attributes in the Godhead 
are thine. And behold, here is the evidence, and 
these are the writings, by which all is made sure to 
thee for ever. 

And now, E-eturn to thy rest, my soul ; for the 


Lord hath dealt bountifully with thee. Say if thy 
lines be not fallen to thee in a pleasant place, and if 
this be not a goodly heritage. blasphemous discon- 
tent, how absurd and unreasonable an evil art thou, 
whom all the fulness of the Godhead' cannot satisfy, 
because thou art denied in a petty comfort, or crossed 
in thy vain expectations from the world ! my un- 
thankful soul, shall not a Trinity content thee ; shall 
not all-sufficiency suffice thee ? Silence, ye mur- 
muring thoughts, for ever. I have enough, I abound, 
and am full. Infiniteness and eternity are mine, and 
what more can I ask ? 

But methinks I feel some secret damps upon my 
joy, and when I would soar aloft and triumph in the 
riches of my portion, a secret diffidence plucks me 
back, as the string doth the bird, and UNBELIEF whis- 
pers in my ear, 

1. " Surely this is too good to be true." But who 
art thou that disputest against G-od ? The Lord hath 
spoken it, and shall not I believe him ? Will he be 
angry if I give rny assent, and speak it confidently 
upon the credit of his words ? my Lord, suffer me 
to spread the writing before thee. Hast thou not 
said, Thy Maker is thy husband, Isa. 54 : 5 ; I will 
betroth thee unto me, Hosea 2 : 19 ; Thou shalt call 
me, my Father ? ,Ter. 8:19. I pray thee, Lord, 
was not this thy saying : I am God, even thy God, 
Psalm 50 : 7 ; I will be a Father unto you, and ye 
my sons and daughters ? ' 2 Cor. 6 : 18. Why then 
should I doubt ? Is not the truth of the living God 
sure footing for my faith ? 


Silence then, quarrelling unbelief. I know in 
whom I have believed. Not in friends, though nu- 
merous and potent ; for they are men, and not God. 
Not in riches ; for they make themselves wings. Not 
in princes ; for their breath is in their nostrils. But 
let God be true, and every man a liar. In God have 
I put my trust, in his word do I hope. sure word ! . 
Heaven and earth shall pass away, but not one jot or 
tittle of this : I have not built upon the sand of mor- 
tality. Let the rain descend, and the floods come, 
and the winds blow, nevertheless the foundation of 
God standeth'sure. His everlasting counsel and ever- 
lasting covenant are my stay. I am built upon his 
promises, and let hell and earth do their worst to blow 
up this foundation. '. 

'Now shall my faith triumph, and my heart be glad, 
and my glory rejoice. I will shout with the exulting 
multitude. The Lord he is the Grod, and he is not 
ashamed to be called my God. He is not ashamed 
of my rags or poverty, of my parentage or pedigree ; 
and since his infinite condescension will own me, 
will he take it ill if I own him? Though -I have 
nothing of my own to glory in, unless I should glory 
in my shame, yet I will glory in the Lord, and bless 
myself in him. 

*' For who is like unto the God of Jeshurun ? Bring 
forth your gods, ye nations. Lift up your eyes, 
and behold who hath created all these things. Can 
any do for their friends as the Lord can ? Or if he 
be angry, who is the god that shall deliver out of liis 
hands ? Will you set Dagon before the ark ? Or shall 


mammon contend with the holy One? ambitious 
Haman, where is now thine idol honor? rich 
glutton, that madest a god of pleasure, where is now 
the god whom thou hast served ? sensual world- 
ling, that knewest not where or how to bestow thy 
goods, do riches profit thee? Could mammon save 
thee ? Deceived souls, go now to the gods that you 
have chosen. Alas, they cannot administer a drop of 
water to cool your tongues. 

But the Portion of Jacob is not like them. From 
everlasting to everlasting he is Grod. His power is 
my confidence, Ms goodness is my maintenance, his 
truth is my shield and my buckler. But, 

2. " My clamorous unbelief hath many wiles, and 
afresh assaults me with the difficulty of the things 
promised, and labors to nonplus and confound me with 
their amazing greatness" But why should I stagger 
at the promise through unbelief, robbing at once my 
Master of his glory, and my soul of her comfort ? It 
is my great sin to doubt and dispute, and shall I be 
afraid to believe ? my soul, it is the highest honor 
thou canst put upon thy Lord, to believe against diffi- 
culties,* and to look for and reckon upon great things 
and wonderful, passing all created power and human 

Let not the greatness nor the strangeness of the 
benefits bequeathed unto thee, put thee to a stand. 
It- is with a God thou hast to do, and therefore thou 
must not look for little things; that were to darken 
the glory of his munificence, and the infiniteness of 
his power and goodness. Knowest thou not that it, is 


liis design to make his name glorious ; and to make 
thee know he is able to do for thee above all thou 
canst ask or think ? Surely they cannot be any small 
or ordinary things that shall be. done for thee, when 
the Lord shall show in thee what a G-od can do, and 
shall carry thee in triumph before the world, and make 
proclamation before thee, Thus shall it be done to the 
man whom the Lord delighteth to honor. "What won- 
der if thou canst not comprehend these things if they 
exceed all thy apprehensions and conceptions? This 
is a good argument for thy faith ; for this is that 
which the Lord hath said, that it hath not entered 
into the heart of man to conceive what things he hath 
prepared for them that love him. Now if thou couldst 
conceive and comprehend them, how should his word 
be made good ? It is enough for thee that the Lord 
hath spoken it. Is not the word nigh thee ? Hath 
God said, I will receive you; you shall be kings and 
priests unto G-od, and inherit all things ; and shall sit 
on thrones, arid, judge angels, and be ever with the 
Lord : and shall I dare to say him nay ? Unreason- 
able unbelief! "What, never satisfied; still contra- 
dicting and blaspheming ? False whisperer, no more 
of thy tales. I believe G-od, that it shall be as he hath 
told me. 

And now, thanks be to G-od, who always causest 
us to triumph in Christ; therefore my lips shall praise 
thee, and my soul which thou hast redeemed. For 
thou ;hast made .me glad through thy word, and I will 
triumph in the works of thy hands. I will praise the 
Lord while I live. I will sing praises to my God 


while I have any "being. my soul, if thou couldst 
wear out thy fingers upon the harp, and wear thy 
tongue to the roots, thou couldst yet never sufficiently 
praise thy Redeemer. 

my enemies, where is now your -confidence, and 
where is your armor wherein, you trusted ? I will set 
Christ alone against all your multitudes, and all the 
power, and malice and policy wherewith they are 
armed. The field is already won, ani the Captain of 
our salvation returned with the spoils of his enemies, 
having made a show of them openly, triumphing over 
them in his cross. And thanks be to God who. hath 
given us the victory, through our Lord Jesus -Christ. 

Of whom, then, should I he afraid ? Behold he is 
near that justifieth me ; who shall plead with me ? 

ye powers of hell, you are hut chained captives, 
and we have a sure word, that the gates of hell shall 
not prevail against us. Though the world he in arms 
against us, and the devil at the head of them as their 
champion, yet who is this uncircumcisecl Philistine, 
that he should defy the armies of the living God? 
Behold, I am come out to thee, as the stripling against 
Goliath; not with sword, and with spear, hut in. the 
name of the Lord of hosts, in whose strength I am 
more than a conqueror. 

grave, where is now thy victory? Christ is risen, 
and hath broken up thy prison, and rolled away the 
stone, so that all thy prisoners have made an escape. 
Rejoice not against me, mine enemy; though I 
fall, I shall rise again; though I lie in darkness, the 
Lord shall be a light unto me. Enlarge not thy de- 


sires, Tophet, fait shut up thy flaming mouth; for 
there is now no. condemnation to them that are in 
Christ Jesus. . 

deceitful world, thou art already overcome, and 
the conquered enemy is "become my servant, and I 
am fed with the honey taken out of the carcass of the 
slain lion. I fear not thy threats, nor the enchant- 
ments of thy syren songs, "being kept "by the power of 
God, through a victorious faith unto salvation. 

my sins, you are already buried, never to have 
any resurrection, and the remembrance of you shall 
be no more. I see my sins- nailed to the cross, and 
their dominion is taken away, though their lives he 
prolonged yet for a little season. Awake, therefore, 
my glory ; awake, psaltery and harp, and meet the 
Deliverer with triumph; for his right hand and his 
holy arm have gotten us the victory, and all the ends 
of the earth have seen the salvation of our God. 
. -3. "Yetmethinksmynnworthinessfliesinmyfaoe, 
and I hear my cavilling unbelief -thus upbraiding me, 
and crying out, ' proud presumption, that thou who 
art conscious to thyself of 'thy great unworthiness, 
shouldst pretend a claim to God and glory! Shall 
daring dust think to share with the Almighty, and 
say of his endless perfections, They are my right ? 
Bold sinner, stand off, s and tremble at thy presump- 
tuous arrogance.' " 

my God, I lay my hand upon my mouth. I 
confess the charge of mine unworthiness. My guilt 
and shame is such as I cannot cover, but thou canst, 
and dost. Thou hast cast a mantle upon my naked- 

Heaven Gpeiwd. 1 4 


ness, and hast promised my transgressions shall not 
be mentioned, and that thou wilt -multiply pardons. 
And shall I take up what thou hast buried, and then 
affright myself with the ghosts 'that unbelief has 
raised ? Is it presumption to take 'the pardon that 
thou dost offer, or to receive and claim thee as mine, 
when it is but what thou hast promised ? I durst not 
have approached thee, but upon thy call; nor have 
claimed a title, but upon thy grant. I should have 
thought it diabolical pride, to have pleaded an interest 
in thee, and claimed kindred to thee, but that thou 
hast showed me the way. 

And thou, my soul, art thou ignorant of God's 
great design? Knowest thou not that it is his purpose 
to glorify free grace? And how should grace appear 
to be grace indeed, were there any worthiness in the 
subject ? Thine unworthiness is but- a foil to set off 
the beauty and riches of free grace and mercy. 

4. "But I cannot shake off this brier: alas, what a 
cavilling sophister is unbelief, and will never be an- 
swered. Now is it ready to tell me, what if the 
promise should be a sure foundation, yet thou mayest 
not build upon another man's ground. What though 
the grace and mercies of God are infinite, yet dogs 
may not catch at the children's bread. Thou hast no 
right nor title to the promise, therefore cease thy 
pretended claim." 

But, my soul, wherefore shouldst thou doubt? 
"Whose image and superscription is this ? Dost thou 
not bear upon thee the marks of the Lord Jesus ? I 
have given up rny name to him, and taken hold of 


his covenant, and therefore may claim an interest. I 
have accepted the matter, and closed with the Media- 
tor, and subscribed to the conditions of the covenant, 
and therefore cannot question but it is mine. The 
Lord hath offered to be my (rod, and I have taken 
hold of his offer. I have taken him as Grod, and given 
him the supremacy. my soul, look round about 
thee, in heaven and in earth;' is there any thou dost 
esteem or value in comparison with God ? Is there 
any thou dost love like him, or take that content or 
felicity in, that thou dost in him? Are not thy chief 
desires and designs to glorify and enjoy him? Thou 
canst not deny but it is truly thus. I am sure noth- 
ing but G-od will content me. I am never so well in 
all the world as in his company. My soul seeketh 
him above all, and rests in Mm alone as my satisfac- 
tory portion. He offereth to take me as one of his 
people, and I have resigned myself accordingly to him 
as his, and have put both my inward and outward 
man under his government, and given up ail-to his 
disposal, and am resolved to be content with him, as 
my all-sufficient happiness. 

Besides, I have taken him in his own way through 
Christ, whom he hath tendered to me as my head and 
husband, and I have accordingly solemnly and delib- 
erately taken him. my soul, dost not thou remem- 
ber thy many debates ? Hast thou not put Christ and 
all the world into the balance ? Hast thou not cast up 
the cost, and reckoned upon the cross, and willingly 
put thy neck under Christ's yoke, and ventured thy 
salvation upon Christ alone, and trusted him with all 


thy happiness and all thy hopes ? Hast thou not over 
and over resolved to take him with what comes, and 
that he shall he enough, though in the loss of all 
things? Thou canst not but 'know that these have 
been the transactions between Christ and thee; and 
therefore he is thine, and all the promises are yea and 
amen to thee through him. 

And for the terms of the covenant, I love and like 
them; my soul embraceth them; neither do I desire 
to be saved in any other way, than by repentance 
towards God, and faith towards our Lord Jesus Christ, 
and sincere obedience to his gospel. I am willing to 
go out of my flesh, and do look unto Jesus for right- 
eousness and strength, and trust my salvation wholly 
on this foundation. I am content to deal upon trust, 
and venture all in the hope of what is to come, and 
to tarry till the next world for my preferment. I am 
willing to wait till the coming of our Lord Jesus 
Christ, and have laid up my happiness on the other 
side the grave. 

And. though my sins be many, yet I should belie 
my own knowledge if. I should say they were not my 
constant trouble and burden, and the enemies, against 
which I daily watch, and with whom my soul hath 
no peace. My own heart knoweth that I hate them, 
and desire and endeavor their utter destruction, and 
do resolve against them all, and am willing to use all 
God's means to mortify them. It is too true that I 
often fall and fail; yet my conscience beareth me 
witness that I confess and bewail it, and do not ordi- 
narily and deliberately allow myself in any sin what- 


soever against my knowledge. And though, my obe- 
dience he miserahly lame, yet, Lord, thou knowest 
that I have respect unto all thy commandments, and 
do strive to come up to what thou requirest. The 
Holy Ghost is witness, and my conscience also, that 
I first seek the kingdom of God and the righteousness 
thereof, and that it is my chief care to please God, 
and keep from sin. Speak, my soul, is not holi- 
ness thy design ? Dost thou not thirst for it, and fol- 
low after it? Dost thou not in thy settled choice 
prefer the holy ways of God before all the pleasures 
and delights of sin ? Thou knowest it is thus, and 
therefore no more disputing ; thou hast sincerely taken 
hold of God's covenant, and without controversy it 
must be thine. 

my God, I see thou hast been at work with my 
soul. I find the prints, I see the footsteps. Surely 
this is the finger of God. I am thy servant, Lord, 
truly I am thy servant, and my soul hath said unto 
the Lord, Thou art my Lord. It must be so. "Wouldst 
thou ever set thy mark upon another's goods ? Or 
shall God disown his own workmanship ? My name 
is written in heaven. Thou hast written thy- name 
upon my heart, and therefore I cannot question but 
thou hast my name on thy heart. I have chosen 
thee, Lord, as my happiness and heritage, and 
therefore I am. sure thou hast chosen me; for I could 
not have loved thee, except thou hadst loved me first. 
my Lord, discern, I pray thee, whose are these, the 
signet, the bracelets, and the staff. I know thou wilt 
acknowledge them. : 


And now "blessed be (rod, and the Father of our 
Lord Jesus Christ, who of his ahundant mercy HATH 


And thou, my soul, believe and wait, look through 
the window, and cry through the lattice, and rejoice 
in the hope of the glory of G-od. The vision is for 
an appointed time ; wait for it. It will come in the 
end, and will not tarry.- Hab. 2:3. Behold, the 
husbandman waiteth for the precious fruits of the 
earth. Be thou also patient. He hath long patience, 
and wilt not thou have a little patience ? He, for the 
fruits of the earth ; but thou, for the joys of heaven. 
He, upon mere probabilities ; but thou, upon infallible 
certainties. He, for a crop of corn ; but thou, for a 
crown of glory. "Were he but sure that every corn 
would bear a crown, how plentifully would he sow, 
how joyfully would he wait ! Why, such is thy har- 
vest. As sure as the summer's delights do follow the 
winter's severities as sure as the wished-for harvest 
doth follow the toilsome and costly seed-time, so sure 
shall thy Lord return, and bring thy reward with 
him. Therefore, my soul, love and long for the ap- 
proaching jubilee, and wait all the days of my appoint- 
ed time, until my change shall come. 

blessed state that my Lord hath translated me into ; 
happy change that he hath made ! I was a stranger, 
and he took me in and made me an heir, and preferred 
' me from the dunghill to the throne, and from a hewer 
of wood and drawer of water to attend his court, and 
know his counsels, and do his pleasure. Happy am I 
that ever I was born to partake of this endless dignity. 


my Lord, it is no little thing thou hast given 
me in hand. I am already come to mount Zion, and 
the city of the living Grod, the heavenly Jerusalem, 
and to an innumerable company of angels, to the 
general assembly and church of the first-born, and to 
Grod the Judge of all, and unto, the spirits of just men. 
made perfect, and unto Jesus the Mediator of the new 
covenant, and unto the blood of sprinkling. My heart 
reviveth as Jacob's, when I behold the tokens which 
thou hast sent me, tHe spirit of adoption, the pardon 
of my sins, my patent for heaven, the chain of thy 
graces, the Son of thy bosom, the new testament in 
his blood, and the letters of his love. My Lord hath 
said that he will love me, and manifest himself unto 
me ; and that the Father will love me, and both will 
come unto me, and make their abode in me. But is 
it true indeed? Will the Lord dwell on earth? Or 
if he will, shall so foul a stable, so unclean a place as 
my heart hath been, shall this be the place that the 
Lord of life will take up his lodging and keep his 
court in ? Will he indeed come with all his train of 
graces, -and live and walk in me? How can these 
things be ? But he hath said it, and I do, and I will 
believe it. 

Yet all this is but the earnest of what is to come. 
how great is thy goodness laid up for them that 
fear thee! Yet a little, and my warfare shall be 
accomplished, and the heavens must receive me till 
the time of the restitution of all things. It is but for 
a short term that I shall dwell in this flesh, in an 
earthen tabernacle. My Lord hath showed me, that 


where he is, there shall his servant be. Now the 
living is tied to the dead, and my soul is a stage of 
strife and a field of war. Yet, it is "but a little mo- 
ment, and that which is perfect shall come : perfect 
holiness and perfect peace, eternal serenity and a se- 
rene eternity. 

my sins, I am going where you cannot come 
where no unclean thing shall enter, nor any thing 
that defileth. Methinks I see all my afflictions and 
temptations, all my infirmities and corruptions, falling 
off me, as Elijah's mantle at his translation. 

my soul, dost thou not see the chariots of fire, 
and the horses of fire, come to take thee up ? Be thou 
as poor as Lazarus, yet Grod will not disdain to send 
a party*of angels to conduct thee home. How canst 
thou doubt of a ready reception, that hast such a 
Friend in court, who will lead thee with boldness into 
his Father's presence ? If there was joy in Pharaoh's 
court when it was said, Joseph's brethren are come, 
surely it will be welcome news in' heaven, when it is 
told, Jesus' brethren are come. 

My soul, fear not to enter, though the Lord be 
clothed with -terror and m'ajesty; for thy Redeemer 
will procure thee favor, and plead thy right. I am 
sure of welcome, for the Father himself loveth me. I 
have tasted and tried his love ; and when I had played 
the wicked prodigal, yet he despised not my rags, but 
fell on my -neck and kissed me, and heaven itself 
rejoiced over me. Much more will he receive me 
gladly, and let out his love upon me, when presented 
to him by his Son, in his perfect likeness, as a fit 


object for his everlasting delight. Fear not, my 
soul, as if thou wert going to a strange place. "Why, 
heaven is thy country and thy home : wilt thou doubt 
of admission, or fear of welcome, when it is thine own 
home ? Why, my soul, thou wast born from above, 
and here is thy kindred and thy Father's house, and 
therefore thou shalt surely be admitted. And then 
shall I see the glorious preparations of eternal love, 
and the blissful mansions of the heavenly inhabit- 

Doubtless it will be thus. These are not sick 
men's dreams, nor children's hopes. The living God 
cannot deceive me: and may not I certainly promise 
myself what the Lord hath promised me? I will 
sooner think that all my senses are deluded, and what 
I see and feel and taste is but a fancy, than think 
that the living God will deceive me, or that his un- 
changeable covenant will fail. Now I am a son of 
God, and it doth not yet appear what I shall be ; but 
this I know, I shall be like him, and see him as 
he is. . .. 

I know it shall be thus. Why, what security 
should I ask of (rod? He hath given me all assur- 
ance in his word. And though the word of God be 
enough, yet he, willing to show more abundantly to 
the heirs of promise the immutability of his counsel, 
confirmed it by an oath; that by two immutable 
things, in which it was impossible for God to lie, I 
might have strong consolation. unreasonable un- 
belief! What, shall not the oath of God put an end 
to thy strife ? rny God, I am satisfied ; it is enough. 



Now I may be told without presumption and toast 
without pride ; and will no more call my duty arro- 
gance, nor my faith a fancy. 

my soul, there is hut a short life hetween thee 
and glory, where holy angels and glorified saints shall 
be my associates, and love and praise my only em- 
ployment. Methinks I hear already how the morning 
stars sing together, and all the sons of G-od shout for 
joy. that I could come in ! But it was said unto 
me, that I should rest yet for a little season, and I 
shall stand in my lot at the end of the days. It is 
well ; Lord, thy word is enough ; thy bond is as good 
as ready payment. The Holy G-host tells me, that 
life and glory abide me ; that what day I loose from 
the body, the same day I shall be landed in paradise. 
Amen. It is as I would have it. 

But this is not all. When my body hath slept a 
short nap in the dust, Christ will call to it, Come up 
hither. Ah, true yoke-fellow, it will be a hard part- 
ing, but a welcome meeting. I could not leave thee, 
but to live with Christ. But he will raise thee a 
glorious temple ; and when he shall appear, will bring 
me with himself in glory; and then I shall reenter 
thee as a royal mansion, wherein I shall abide with 
the Lord for ever. For as we have served our Re- 
deemer together, so we must be glorified together with 
him. And when the Lord hath married us together 
again, then will he marry us both unto himself. For 
I know that my Redeemer liveth, and that he shall 
stand at the last day upon the earth. And though 
after my skin, worms destroy this body, yet in my 


flesh I shall see G-od; wliom I shall see for myself, 
and mine eyes shall behold, and not another, though 
my reins be consumed within me. My Lord hath 
already told me how it shall he. He hath set down 
the time, and showed me the robes of immortality, 
and the crown of life, that I must put on; and the 
throne of glory, and the seat of judgment that I must 
sit in. He hath told me the manner in which I shall 
be presented to him, and espoused by him. He hath 
told me where he will set me, and what he will say 
to me, and how he will acknowledge my mean ser- 
vices,, and remember what I have forgotten; how he 
will praise the works that I have been ashamed of, 
and reward me openly for what I have buried in 
secrecy, and not forget the poorest alms that I have 
given for his name. Then will he confess me before 
his Father, and before the angels of Grocl. Thus saith 
the true and faithful "Witness, and we know that his 
testimony is true. 

Ah, my soul, see that thou make not God a liar. 
1 John, 5 : 10. my G-od, I have believed thy 
report, and do look for fill tllese things, according to 
thy promise. I know thou intendest me but for a very 
. little while in this lower region. This world is but 
the house of my pilgrimage, and my soul now is but 
like a bird in the shell ; but when the shell is cracked, 
then shall she take wings like a dove, and soar aloft 
to thee, and fly away and be at rest. Yet I doubt 
not thy care for my despicable dust. I know that 
nothing will be lost : I know not where they will lay 
me; but thy wakeful eye observeth, and will not have 


to seek at what door 'to knock, nor. at what grave to 
call for me. I believe, and am sure that I shall come 
a glorious work out of thy hands, fair as the moon, 
clear as the sun, crowned with honor and glory. And 
when my absolution is read, and sentence passed 
upon the world, then must I be taken up to dwell 
with thee. 

Let not my Lord be angry, that thy dust and ashes 
speaketh thus unto. thee. Thou, Lord, hast raised 
my expectations, and hast made me look for all these 
great things from thee. In vain hast thou written all 
these things unto me, if I should not believe them; 
and a distrustful diffidence would put a high dishonor 
upon thy truth. 

Lord, it repenteth me it repenteth me of my 
jealousies, and my doubtful thoughts about thee. I 
know thou lovest an humble confidence, and delight- 
cst in nothing more than to see thy children trust 
thee. I know the building of my hopes reaches not 
a hair's breadth beyond the foundation of thy prom- 
ises; yea, it is sure, my expectations are infinitely 
short of what I shall find. my God, my heart 
trusteth safely in thee, and I here set to my seal that 
thou art true. Christ is the corner-stone on which I 
build, and therefore my building will challenge the 
winds and floods. 

And now, Lord, what wait I for ? my hope is 

in thee. my Blessedness, let me enjoy thee. my 

" Life, let me possess thee. Desire of mine eyes, let 

me see thy face and hear thy voice ; for thy voice is 

sweet, and thy countenance is comely. I ask but 


what thou hast promised; for thou hast told me that 
I shall see (rod, and thou wilt speak to me mouth to 
mouth, even apparently and not in dark speeches, 
and -the similitude of Gfod shall I behold. So shall, 
my knowledge be perfected, and I shall see the inac- 
cessible light, and my tender eye shall not water, nor 
my sight dazzle; but I shall with open face look 
steadfastly on the Sun of righteousness, and behold 
his glory. Then shall faith be turned into fruition, 
and hope into possession, and love shall arise like the 
full moon in her brightness, and never wax nor wane 

thou Grod of my hopes, I look for a new body, 
and a new soul for new heavens, and for a new 
earth, according to thy promise, when my whole 
soul shall be wholly taken up with thee. and all my 
affections strained to the highest pitch, and all the 
wheels of my raised powers set in most vigorous and 
perpetual motion towards thee, still letting in, and 
still laying out ; and thus shall there be an everlast- 
ing communication of joy and glory from thee, and of 
love and praise from me. 

my soul, thou' art rich indeed, and increased in 
goods. Thou hast no reason to envy the glory or 
grandeur of the mightiest on earth; for their glory 
shall not descend after them: like sheep shall they be 
laid in their graves, and death shall feed upon them, 
and there is an eternal end of all their pomp and ex- 
cellency. But my kingdom is an everlasting king- 
dom. My robes shall never wear, my crown shall 
never totter, my throne shall never be vacant, my 


tread shall never decay, my garland shall never 
wither, my house shall never moulder, my wine shall 
never sour, but everlasting joy shall "be upon my head, 
and sorrow and sighing shall fly away. 

my Grod, how happy hast thou made me ! It is 
tetter than I could have wished. Thou hast done all 
things well. Thou hast settled them for ever. The 
whole earth cannot show any such heritage or ten- 
ure. The world can deed out her possessions only for 
years, nor can she make a good title for that ; hut 
my inheritance is for ever, and none can put me out 
of possession. The thing is established in heaven, and 
in the volume of the book it is written of me. My 
evidence cannot be lost; it is recorded in the court 
above, and enrolled in the sacred leaves of the word, 
and entered upon the book of my conscience, and 
herein I do and will rejoice. 

Now, my soul, wipe thine eyes, and go away like 
Hannah, and be no more sad. "What though my 
house be not so with G-od ; so happy, so prosperous as 
I could wish ? What though they be increased that 
trouble me, and my temptations and afflictions are 
like the rolling billows, riding on one another's backs 
for haste, yet shall my soul be as a rock unmoved, 
and sit down satisfied in the security and amplitude 
of my portion. For G-od hath made with me an ever- 
lasting covenant, ordered in all things, and sure ; and 
herein is all my salvation, and all my desire. 

And now, what remaineth, Lord, but that I 
should spend the remainder of my days in loving, 
praising, and admiring thee ? But wherewithal shall 


I come before the Lord, or tow myself before the most 
'highG-od? "What shall I give thee, to express my 
thankfulness, though not to requite thy bounty? 
Alas, my poor little soul; alas that thou art so little! 
How narrow are thy capacities ; how disproportion- 
ate are thy powers ! Alas that my voice can reach to 
no higher a note ! But shall I do nothing, because I 
cannot do all? 

Lord, I resign my all to thee. "With the poor wid- 
ow, I cast my two mites, my soul and body, into thy 
treasury. All my powers shall love and serve thee. 
All my members shall be weapons of righteousness for 
thee. Here is my good will. Behold, my substance 
is thy stock, mine interest is for thy service. I lay 
all at thy feet : there, thou hast them, they are thine. 
My children I enter as thy servants. My possessions 
I resign as thy right. I will call nothing mine but 
thee. AH mine are thine. I can say, My Lord and 
my God, and that is enough; I thankfully quit my 
claim to all things else. I will no more say, My 
house is mine, or my estate mine ; I myself am not 
mine own. Yet it is infinitely better for me to be 
thine, than if I were mine own. This is my happi- 
ness, that I can say, My own God, my own Father. 
And what a blessed exchange hast thou made with 
me : to give me thyself, who art an infinite sum, for 
myself, who am but an insignificant cipher ! 

And now, Lord, do thou accept and own my claim. 
I am not worthy of any thing of thine, much less of 
thee. But since I have a deed to show, I bring thy 
word in my hand, and am bold to take possession. 


Dost thou not know this hand? wilt thou not own this 
name? wilt thon not confirm thine own grant? It 
were infidelity to doubt it. I will not disparage the 
faithfulness of my Lord, nor he afraid to aver arid 
stand to what he hath said and sworn. Hast thou 
said thou art my God, and shall I fear thou art my 
enemy ? Hast thou told me thou art my Father, and 
shall I stand aloof, as if I were a stranger? I will 
"believe. Lord, silence my fears; and as thou hast 
given me the claim and title of a child, so give me 
the confidence of a child. Let my heart be daily kept 
alive by thy promises, and with this staff let me pass 
over Jordan. May these be my undivided companions 
and comforters. "When I go, let them lead me ; when 
I sleep, let them keep me; when I awake, let them 
talk with me. And do thou keep these things for 
ever upon the imaginations of the thoughts of the 
hearts of thy people, and prepare their hearts unto 
thee. And let the heart of thy servant be the ark of 
thy testament, wherein the sacred records of what 
hath passed between thee and my soul may for ever 
be preserved. Amen. 

Thus far my friend. So may it be. 




ARTH, earth, earth, hear the word of the Lord. 
Ye men of this world, ye spirits that are in prison, 
held captive to iniquity, under the prince of this 
world; in a covenant with death, at an agreement 
with hell, without Christ, aliens from the common- 
wealth of Israel, strangers from the covenant of prom- 
ise, having no hope, without God in the world ; who 
have said, we will not have this man to rule over us, 
let us break his bonds asunder and cast his cords from 
us; who are joined to idols, have chosen you other 
gods, are following after other lovers; who walk 
after the course of this world, according to the prince 
of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh 
in the children of disobedience; having your conver- 
sation in the lusts of the flesh, fulfilling the desires of 
the flesh and of the mind, and being still, as you were 
by nature, the children of wrath, in the gall of bitter- 
ness and bond of iniquity. 

ye sons of death, ye children of the night and 
of darkness, hear, and your souls shall. live; to you 
also is the' word of this salvation sent; even the 
strangers, and those who are afar off, that will lay 


hold on the covenant, and choose the thing that pleas- 
eth Qod, these also shall have a name in his house, 
even the glorious name of sons and daughters. The 
Lord hath sent a word into Jacob, and it shall light 
upon Bdom, and Amalek, and the uncircumcised Phil- 
istines, even as many of them as the Lord our God 
shall call Acts 2: 39. 

Hearken, people, you that are polluted in your 
Mood, written in the earth, free among the dead; 
come in, let your covenant with death be made void, 
and your agreement with hell be disannulled ; strike 
a league with the Almighty, and your names also 
shall be written among the living in Jerusalem. 
Stand ye before the Lord; come, let us reason to- 
gether. "Where are you ? "What is your portion and 
inheritance ? Ye are cursed with a curse. Fire and 
brimstone, and a horrible tempest, this shall be the 
portion of your cup. Psalm 11 : 6. What are you 
seeking ? Whither are you travelling ? After a few 
years of your vanity are over, where must your 
dwelling be ? "Who can dwell with the devouring 
fire? "Who can dwell with everlasting burnings? 
Look before you, behold that smoking furnace, that 
burning lake, that bottomless pit which is gaping for 
you, and which at your next step may swallow you 
up. Escape for your lives ; why will ye die ? Turn 
and live. 

Do you believe the resurrection from the dead, 
the judgment to come, and the invisible world ? Is 
it to the spirit of a man as to the spirit of a beast ? 
Doth it perish with his body ? Dieth a man as a dog 


dietli ? Dieth a wise man as a fool dieth ? Fall all 
things alike to all, just and unjust, good and bad, 
after this life, as well as in it ? 

Do you "believe the Scriptures ? Are they but a 
fable? If you hope they are, are you sure they are? 
Dare you venture your souls upon it? "While the 
saints venture on the truth, dare you venture your 
souls on the falsehood of it? Dare you stand forth 
and say, If this word be not a lie, let me be damned 
for ever ; I am content that the everlasting worm shall 
gnaw my heart, that the infernal fire shall burn my 
flesh and bones and soul for ever and ever, if it prove 
not at last a mere forgery and imposture ! 

Do you believe the Scriptures to be true indeed ? 
If you do, what do they preach to you ? Do they 
speak any thing, if not this : That there is another life 
and death, besides that which is within the ken of 
mortal eyes ; that the other life and the other death 
are eternal; that upon your being found within or 
without the covenant of Grod, hangs your eternal judg- 
ment, either for life or death ; that while you are in 
a covenant with death, and in a course of iniquity, 
you are without the covenant of God, and "an have 
no benefit by it ; .that under- sin, you are out of cove- 
nant; out of covenant, you are out of Christ ; and out 
of Christ, you are under condemnation ? 

Are there any thing's which that word which you 
profess to believe to be true, and to stand as sure as 
heaven and earth are there any things which this 
speaks more plainly than these things and such as 
these? ,What, and yet secure in a state of sin? 


Aliens from God, enemies of all righteousness, and 
yet in quiet ? Are you resolved to sell eternity for 
time, life for death, a soul for the pleasures of sin ? 
Is this the choice you have made, and are you resolved 
to stand to it? "Let me have this world, my por- 
tion here, my good things here, and then let me be 
damned in the other world ; let me sin here, and suf- 
fer hereafter; let me laugh here, and lament here- 
after; let me flourish and prosper and live at ease 
and in honor and in pleasure and at liberty here, and 
let my prison and my pain and my anguish and my 
plagues be beneath; there let me be torn, let me 
burn, let me roar, let me die, so I may be rich and 
be merry, and rejoice a while here ; let time be my 
heaven, and eternity be my hell!" Speak in earnest, 
is this your choice ? Or that you may not be urged 
to make a new choice, will you take upon you to 
make a new gospel ? And dividing what God hath 
joined together, will you join what he hath divided ? 
"Will you write this for gospel: "Holiness and hell, 
sin and glory, Christ and the curse, the devil and the 
crown : let the wicked hold on his way, and the un- 
righteous his thoughts;, let him still run away from 
the Lord, and he shall have mercy, and from his God, 
and he will abundantly pardon ! Strait is the gate, 
and narrow is the way, that leadeth unto death, and 
few there be that find it ; but* broad is the gate, and 
wide is the way, that leadeth unto life, and the whole 
world are going in thereat ! Blessed are the proud 
in spirit ; for theirs is the kingdom of heaven ! Blessed 
are they that laugh now ; blessed are the froward, 


tlie merciless, the impatient in heart, the persecutors 
for righteousness' sake ; for great is their reward in 
heaven ! Within shall be the dogs, the whoremongers, 
the sorcerers, the drunkards, the ruffians, the blas- 
phemers, the idolaters, and whosoever loveth and 
maketh a lie ; and without shall be the lambs, the 
holy, and the humble, and the meek, and the merci- 
ful, and the upright in heart, and the poor in spirit, 
and peacemakers, the persecuted for righteousness' 
sake, and whosoever loveth truth and maketh God 
his trust : these shall go into everlasting fire, but the 
ungodly into life eternal !" 

Are these the articles of yoilr creed ? Is this your 
gospel ? If it be, what is your heaven ? If it be 
not, if the old gospel must stand, where are your 
souls ? Are your souls lost, and are they not worth 
the recovery? "Why will ye die? Turn and live ; 
when shall it be ? 

As an ambassador for Christ, to whom is committed 
the word of reconciliation, having hinted to you what 
is law, so in the name of the eternal God, I publish 


The Lord God having entered into a covenant of 
life with the first Adam, for himself and all mankind 
in him, this covenant has been broken, whereby sin 
hath entered, and death by sin; and all the world 
being now become' guilty before God, bound over to 
the vengeance of eternal fire, and under an utter im- 
possibility of recovery by aught which that covenant 
can do, God has out of his abundant grace made a 
new covenant, on which whosoever shall lay hold, 


shall be delivered out of the state of death and wrath 
into a state of life and blessedness. What the law 
could not do, being weak through the flesh, Grod sent 
his Son in the likeness of sinful flesh to accomplish ; 
and with him this gracious grant, that whosoever 
believeth in him, shall not perish, but have everlast- 
ing life. John 3 : 16. And this is the covenant which 
has been declared unto you. 

This new covenant is a marriage covenant: I 
will betroth thee unto me for ever, yea, I will betroth 
thee to me in righteousness, and in loving-kindness, 
and in mercies. Hos. 2 : 20. In it the Lord makes 
offer, and invites you'to accept of a husband and a 
dower : the husband is the King's Son, the Lord Jesus 
Christ, and with him the lost kingdom, and all that 
belongs to the kingdom of God, for a dower. Liberty 
for the captives, the opening of the prison to them 
that are bound ; riches to the poor, eyes to the blind, 
feet to the lame, healing to the diseased, and life to 
the dead. 

And whoever among you all, who are persons 
under the law, held by the cords of your*sins, whose 
souls are fast bound in fetters of iron, who are willing 
that your covenant with death be made void and your 
agreement with hell be disannulled, and will join 
yourselves to the Lord and be brought within the 
bonds of this covenant, all the blessings of this cove- 
nant are made over and stand sure unto you. The 
grant is made, the deed is drawn and sealed; the 
Lord hath set to his seal come you in and seal the 
counterpart; set to it your seal, and the match is 


made up. Christ, and with him all things, are yours, 
and you are his. Accept, and live ; refuse, and die 
for ever. 

Come then, sinner; what sayest thou ? Dost thou 
consent ? Dost thou accept ? Or, as Laban to Ee- 
bekah, "Wilt thou go with this man ? Let me espouse 
thee to this one Husband ; only let me first tell thee, 
the matter is solemn, and thou must be serious. It 
is for life, it is for eternity. Consider therefore, and 
let thy heart, lying prostrate before the Almighty, 
come in and make answer to these demands, which 
from him, and in his great and dreadful name, I make 
unto theei 

I. "Wilt thou have Jesus for THY HUSBAND ? Un- 
derstand before thou answer. The taking of Christ 
for thy Husband implies, 

1. Intimate union by choosing and accepting 
him for thine, and resigning and giving up thyself to 
him for his own ; to live with him in the dearest con- 
jugal affections for ever. 

2. Ingenuous subjection by a free and cheerful 
putting thyself under him, as thy Lord whom thou 
wilt obey and be subject to, in all things. The wife 
must be subject to her husband ; yet not as a slave, 
by constraint, but freely and by consent. 

3. Total dependence holding him as thy Head, 
expecting nothing, owning nothing but what descends 
upon thee from him; depending upon him for all 
things, the bearing of thy debts, thy discharge from 
thy bonds, and thy whole provision for a livelihood 
and maintenance* 


Consider, then; what sayest thou? Does thy 
heart choose and accept, and resign up itself unto 
Christ ? Dost thou choose him as a Husband ? Thou 
canst choose him as a Refuge, to hide thee from dan- 
ger thou canst choose him as a Friend, to help thee 
in thy need ; "but dost thou choose him for thy Hus- 
band? "Wilt thou cleave to him; love, honor, and 
obey him ? Dost thou understand his manner, the 
law of his house, his family order and discipline? 
Dost thou know his commands and expectations ; how 
holy, how spiritual, how strict and self-denying, how 
humble and submissive he expects thy whole-carriage 
should be ? "Wilt thou be at his finding ? , Wilt thou 
look unto him, and lean upon him for all thou need- 
est ? Shall all thy desire be to him, and thy depend- 
ence on him ? Thou art a bondman ; who shall be 
thy redemption ? Thou art a malefactor ; who shall 
be thy satisfaction ? v Thou art a leper ; whence dost 
thou look for cleansing ? Thou art a .beggar ; whence 
dost thou expect an inheritance? "Wilt thou lean 
upon thy Beloved for all? Shall he be thy wisdom, 
righteousness, sanctification, redemption, and -inherit- 
ance ? "Wilt thou do him this honor, to trust him for 
all this ; to cast all thy burdens, thy care, thy fears, 
thy sins, thy guilt, thy hopes upon him? Canst 
thou say, "0 my Grod, I have sinned, I have sinned; 
thy law have I broken, thy love have I slighted, I 
have fallen from thee, and run over to thine enemies ; 
I have fallen under thy displeasure; wrath is pro- 
voked, justice has taken hold of me, my soul is un- 
done. How dreadful is thy controversy with me ! And 


I have nothing to answer but this, 'My Jesus shall 
answer for me.' 

"0 my. Jesus, thou hast wooed and invited sin- 
ners unto thee ; thou hast sent forth thy messengers 
and thy word into the highways and hedges, into the 
jails -and hospitals of the world ; among the poor, 
the Wind, and the bound, and the diseased, and those 
who are in debt and distress, to take from among 
them a wife for thy bosom. Behold, thy word has 
found among the captives this wretched adulteress, 
my poor harlot soul, which has dealt treacherously 
with thee, and has followed after other lovers, has 
fallen among thieves. and robbers, is bruised, wounded, 
and undone, having prodigally spent and wasted all 
that I had. 

11 But behold, I come at thy word ; if thou sayest, 
'I have no pleasure in thee' if thou spurn me with 
thy foot, and trample me in the dirt, or send me back 
to my prison, and leave me to bear the shame of my 
sins, I must be silent and speechless. 

" But wilt thou receive me ? "Wilt thou take me 
into thy' house? Shall I be called by thy name? 
"Wilt thou love me, and be joined unto me ? Wilt 
thou be surety for thy servant ? "Wilt thou that my 
debts be upon thee, my bonds be upon thee, my wants, 
my sins, my sorrows, my fears, my plagues, my help, 
my soul be upon thee ? Wilt thou, Lord, and can I 
say thee nayf "Wilt thou take them, and can I re- 
fuse to lay them upon thee? I consent, Lord, I con- 
sent to thee; be thou my husband and my helper; 
love me, discharge me of 4 this guilt, loose me fi-Qm 

Hpaven Opened. \ 


tliese fetters, cleanse me from this filthiness, and then 
ask what thou wilt, impose upon me whatever thou 
pleasest. Love thee, honor thee, obey thee ! what 
is my love, what is my obedience, that thou shouldst 
accept, or I should deny it to thee ? It is but little 
that I can do; -this heart is so false and so feeble 
that I am afraid how I undertake for it ; but such as 
it is, take it to thee ; I bestow it wholly upon thee, 
with this promise, that if thou wilt help me, I will 
love thee ; if thou wilt help me, I will be subject to 
thee, and lay up all my- hopes and expectations^with 
thee." Now, soul, now that thou knowest what it 
means, now say, wilt thou have Christ for thy Hus- 

II. "Wilt thou take him FOR BETTER, FOR WORSE, for 
richer, for poorer? Though thy Lord be a King, yet 
his kingdom is not of this world. /He came not to be 
ministered unto, but to minister ; he came to serve 
and to suffer, and all those that will follow him must 
suffer with him.j He came not to divide lands and 
spoils and .crowns and temporal dignities and honors 
among his disciples, but crosses and prisons and 
scourges and wants. Thou wilt join thyself to the 
Lord, but wilt thou take up thy lot with him ? Thou 
wilt live with him, and abide with him; but dost thou" 
know where he dwells, and what his entertainment 
is? Sometimes he has bread, and sometimes he is 
hungry; sometimes he has clothes, and sometimes is 
naked ; sometimes he has a house, and sometimes he 
has none ; sometimes he has friends, and sometimes he 
has none; he is sometimes used kindly, and some? 


times as coarsely; sometimes it is Hosanna, and 
sometimes Crucify; sometimes lie is cried up. as a 
.king, sometimes cried out against as a devil : and as 
it is with the master, so will it "be with the scholar ; 
as with the Lord, so with the disciple ; where he is, 
thou must ."be also. Canst thou say, "Whither thou 
goest, I will go with thee ; where thou feedest, I will 
feed with thee; where my Lord dwelleth, if in a tent, 
if in a cave, if in a dungeon, if in a wilderness, wher- 
ever my Lord dwelleth, let me dwell with him? Con- 
sider, what thou sayest, and he not overhasty. 

May he thou dost not yet know what hunger and* 
thirst and nakedness mean, what the wrath of man, 
what their reproachings and spittings and stripes 
and bonds mean : it may be thou hast thought, This 
may be far enough off, and may never come upon me ; 
or hast taken up a resolution through thoughtlessness, 
not weighing how sharp and how pinching they may 
be to thee. But suppose thou wert now just come to 
it, and that thou sawest that thy first foot Christ- 
ward would be the parting-point between thee and all 
that is dear unto thee in the world that thy first step 
heavenward would be into the fire, or the water, or 
into the camp of the Philistines, whose faces were all 
filled with fury against thee hast thou yet such a 
far deeper sense of the eternal sufferings thou art in 
danger of; such a settled belief of thy absolute neces- 
sity of Christ to thy escaping these ; such a high value 
of the love of Christ, and the everlasting salvation 
thou expectest by him, as overbalances and swallows 
up the sharpest and the quickest sense thou hast or 


canst have of the greatest things thou shalt suffer by 
him? Hast thou counted up all afflictions imaginable, 
and then put thy soul to decide : "Now resolve what 
vto do : either this, or no Christ ; either this, or no 

J^, crown; either ..this cross, or the curse; either the 
' : ' -'iSr 

^ wrath of man,-'6r the wrath of Gfod, shrieking and 

"" \ howling and gnashing of teeth for ever and ever. 
, Confess Christ, and be confessed by him; suffer 
/ with> r ,Christ, and reign with him ; weep with Christ, 
V j and rejoice with him; die with Christ, and live for 

> ever: deny Christ, forsake Christ, and perish for 
.M ever." Hast thou thus put thyself to it? And after 
the most solemn debate thou hast had, what is the 
result? Now tell me, Christ, or no Christ? Wilt thou 
have Christ for better, for worse, how dear soever he 
cost thee ? 


three husbands that lay claim to -thee: sin, the world, 
and the devil. Wilt thou renounce, and be divorced 
from all these ? There is no compounding between 
Christ and them; he or they must go. 

1. The renouncing of sin consists in the disen- 
gaging or loosening of the heart from sin. It is a 
hearty willingness to let it go : a willingness to part 
is our parting with sin a breaking the peace, the 
cutting off the league between sin and the soul; 
when a sinner, clearly convinced of the worth of 
Christ, of the value of the soul, of the enmity of sin 
against Christ and the soul, of the unworthiness of 
sin with all its pleasures and advantages to be laid 
in the balance with Christ, is willing to be rid of it: 


"What is there in it? what can it do for me? how 
long will it last me? where will it lead me? the 
tail of these locusts the sting, the sting that I see 
there! Can I live without Christ; or can I hope that 
he will dwell with such neighbors ? Can I bear the 
loss of my soul; or can it escape if these escape? I 
see it is vain to think of keeping both Christ and lusts, 
it is vain to think of saving both my sins and my soul; 
it is all one as to be saved and to be damned; I may 
as well bring heaven and hell together. Well, let 
them go; henceforth hold thy peace, sin, plead no 
more with me for entertainment, be a stranger for 
ever to me, henceforth I know thee no more." 

In the engaging of the heart against sin. When 
the heart is not only content to let it depart, but gives 
it a bill of divorce, and sends it away. When it can 
live without.it, and cannot bear it. When it deals 
with it as the Egyptians with Israel : at first they 
only gave them leave to be gone, but at length they 
thrust them out. They were urgent upon them, 
"that they might send them out of the land in haste; 
for they said, we be all but dead men." 

"Begone, sin," it says, "lam but a dead man if 
thou abidestwith me;" and so it will no longer court 
it as a friend, but curse it as an enemy fears it, hates 
it, and is resolved to be its mortal enemy; and to this 
end is determined to use all Grod's means to discover 
and to destroy it. 

(1.) To use all G-od's means to discover it; to 
bring to light the hidden things of darkness. Sin 
goes under a disguise ; it is hard to know friends from 


enemies ; they need have their senses about them, and 
well exercised too, that are to discern between good 
and evil. Heb. 5 : 14. "Who can understand his errors ? 
Psa. 19 : 12. Sin lies in the dark. " The heart of 
man is desperately wicked; who can know it?" There 
is too much wickedness, and it lies too deep to be dis- 
cerned by every eye ; he that means in earnest to cast 
out, must first search out his iniquities. "Let us 
search and try our ways." Lam. 3 : 40. He must 
search the scriptures which describe these enemies, 
and mark them out, what they are, and how many, 
and how you may know them wherever you find 
them, and under what disguise soever they appear; 
must search the heart, where, if they walk no more 
openly, they will hide themselves, that they be not 
discovered or suspected. 

Thou art a self-deceived sinner, who oallest thy- 
self an adversary to sin, and takest no care to find it 
out; much more, who willingly Mdestit out of sight. 
He takes part with sin who will not take pains 
to know it. "I hate the devil and all his works, I 
repent, I forsake all my sins ; and though I have done 
iniquity, by the grace of Grod I will do so no more." 
Thus vain men talk ; but dost thou know what thou 
sayest? What is sin? Dost thou know a friend from 
an enemy, good from evil? What are thy sins? what 
hast thou done? wherein hast thou transgressed? 
who are those that have done thee mischief? what 
are their names ? It may be thou wilt say their name 
is Legion, for they are many. 
"In many things I have transgressed, in many 


things I have offended." But in what things? Dost 
thou know thine enemy when thou seest him; or 
wouldst thou know him if thou couldst ? Dost thou 
make any search or inquiry after him ? When thou 
readest of a proud heart in the Scriptures, art thou 
able to say, There is one of them that have done me 
mischief ; or of a covetous heart, There is another of 
them; or of an envious, malicious, froward heart, 
There are more of them ; or of a hard and hypocriti- 
cal, ignorant, unbelieving heart, This is he, this is my 
great enemy? Or if thou canst not tell, dost thou 
ask, Is not this he ; are not these they ? that I 
could understand mine errors ; Lord, make me to know 
my transgressions. 

Sinners, never make yourselves believe you are 
enemies to sin till you make narrow and -particular 
inquiry after it after all sin, the several kinds of it, 
whether of omission or commission, whether outward 
or spiritual, open or secret, greater or smaller, sins of 
ignorance or knowledge, of infirmities or presump- 
tion; your beloved, your most pleasing sins, your 
most gainful lusts, whatever they be, you can never 
renounce till you resolve to make a diligent search 
after them. 

(2.) To use all God's means to overcome and de- 
stroy them. He that hides his enemy, and he that 
will spare him when he has found him, is not an 
enemy, but a friend. He that says, I will destroy, 
ancl will not use his weapons, either knows not what 
he says, or says what he never means. Thou sayest 
thou wilt renounce and resist all thy sins ; but art 


thou in earnest ? What course dost tliou mean to 
take? Wilt thou take God's way? He bids thee 
hear, believe, pray, fast, mourn, strive, watch ; and 
wilt thou hearken to his counsels? Thou wilt be 
healed of thy diseases ; but wilt thou take the counsel 
of the Physician ? Wilt thou use his medicines ? Thou 
wilt overcome thine enemy ; but wilt thou take heed 
of him ? Wilt thou fidit asrainst him ? Wilt thou 

G o 

take in all the help that is offered thee ? Wilt thou 
not only believe and lean upon God for his help, but 
wilt thou pray and lift up thy heart for his help ? 
Wilt thou not only pray against thy sins, but watch 
against them against the occasions, temptations, 
and beginnings of sin? Wilt thou use all God's 
means, and against all thy sins? Shall not thine 
eyes spare any of them ? Wilt thou make thorough 
work with them, root and branch, old and young? 
Shall there be neither the lowing of the oxen nor the 
bleating of the sheep heard with thee ? 

Wilt thou avenge thyself of thine enemies, and 
wilt thou never again agree with thine adversaries ? 
If thy sins say to thee, Is it peace, soul ? wilt thou 
answer, What have you to do with peace ? get you 
behind me. Wilt thou neither make a truce with 
sin, nor embrace a parley, nor entertain a treaty for 
peace with it ? Wilt thou not draw back thy hand, 
nor put up thy weapons, nor give over thy watch, 
nor go off thy guard, till all thine enemies become 
thy footstool ? All this is included in the renouncing 
of sin. 

Beware you be not mistaken here; this is the 


damnation of the world, their mistakes about repent- 
ance. They easily say, I repent of my sins, I forsake 
the devil and all Ms works. And they as easily per- 
suade themselves that they do as they say. But did 
they understand what there is in this repentance a 
searching out their sins, dividing their souls from 
them, a painful and watchful shunning and resisting 
them in their whole course ; did they know what their 
particular sins are, how near they are to their hearts, 
how they have been nursed in their bosoms, and how 
hard it will be now to part : even this covetousness 
must go, even this sensuality must go; these dear 
pleasures, these beloved gains, these pleasant compan- 
ions must all be sent away, not one to be spared, not 
so much as once more did they understand this, they 
would then see what wind all their good words be. 
They as much mean to pluck their eyes out of their 
heads, to tear their flesh off their bones, as to repent, 
if this be repentance. Well, now say, wilt thou re- 
pent wilt thou now renounce sin ? 

2. "Wilt thou renounce the world also ? By the 
world, understand all the substance of the world, 
houses, lands, money, and whatsoever worldly pos- 
sessions ; all the shadows of the world, its honors, 
pleasures, pomps, with all its glory ; the men of this 
world, the friendship of the world, all fleshly rela- 
tions, fathers, mothers, brothers, sisters, children, all 
sinful companions and societies; whatsoever is in and 
of the world. 

These are then renounced, when we are resolved 
that they shall neither be our gods nor our tempters. 



1. Not our gods. We make the world a god to us, 
when we make it our happiness or end; when we 
bless ourselves in it, and count that our very life con- 
sists in the ahundance of the things which we pos- 
sess ; when we devote ourselves to it, making it both 
the blessedness and the great business of our life. Ho 
that can lack the world, and yet be blessed he that 
can have the world, and yet not serve it he has re- 
nounced it, even while he has it ; though it is his still, 
yet it is not his god. 2. Not our tempters. The 
world tempts in a double way by objects and instru- 
ments. As objects-: which by something that is ap- 
prehended desirable in them, entice and invite out- the 
heart after them; or by something apprehended as 
formidable, affright us out of our way : thus, pleas- 
ant meats tempt the glutton, and wine the drunkard, 
and a lion in the streets the coward. Also by instru- 
ments: as the devil's instruments or agitators, by 
which he betrays and beguiles unstable souls. In the 
former sense the things of the world, in the latter, 
the men of the world, are temptations and tempters 
to us. He renounces the world, that will not be 
tempted by the world that takes up with Christ, and 
will not be bribed off by worldly advantages, nor prose- 
lyted by worldly companions. 

He that is resolved for Christ, though with the 
loss of all, and with the displeasure of all the world 
he that can be poor for Christ, that can be vile for 
Christ, that can go hungry and naked with Christ, 
that can go alone with Christ, and this even when it 
is but to turn away from Christ, and he may be rich, 


honorable, clothed and filled, and have company enough, 
as much as he desires he forsakes the world. 

He that can renounce the world, whenever it comes 
to "be the case that either Christ must be forsaken, or 
all things for Christ he that can do this, whose heart 
is "brought to it, he has renounced the world. What 
gayest thou now, soul ? 

Thou wilt have Christ ; but what if thou must 
leave all behind thee? What if he say to thee, Sell 
all that thou hast, and follow me? Canst thou be 
poor ? Canst thou be naked ? Canst thou be hungry 
for Christ? Thou wilt have Christ; but how wilt 
thou leave thy companions ? Canst thou hear all thy 
carnal friends say of thee, "He is a fool, he is mad, 
he is beside himself?" How wilt thou look thy fa- 
ther, or thy mother, or thy wife in the face, who are 
all -against it ; who will be persuading, beseeching 
thee, weeping over thee, hanging upon thy neck, or it 
may be, scoffing and reviling, to discourage and hold 
thee back ? What sayest thou now ? Art thou yet 
for Christ ? Wilt thou forsake them all, cast off all 
that stands in thy way ? 

3. Wilt thou forsake the devil also ? But I 
need not now ask thee that; that is done already: 
farewell, devil, when once sin and the world are cast 
out. If thou wilt not be tempted to sin, if the world 
ceases to be a temptation, the devil might as well 
cease to be a tempter. There be many that say, " I 
defy the devil," and yet defy not sin and the world. 
Wise men ! They like not the devil, but yet wilt fol- 
low his will ; they hate the devil, and yet are never 


well longer than they are dancing in his chains. Defy 
the devil, and yet love sin! Such defiance is his 
delight. Let sin "be defied, let the world he despised, 
and the devil is conquered. 

IV. "Wilt thou cleave unto Christ FROM HENCE- 
FORTH UNTO DEATH? Thou-wilt have Christ ; hut 
when ? Shall this he the marriage-day ? "Wilt thou 
from henceforth he the Lord's ; or when shall it he ? 
Must it he to-morrow, or next month, or next year, 
or some time or other, thou knowest not when ? Must 
we take thy promise as they did the prophecy, "The 
vision that he seeth is for many days to come,- and 
he prophesieth of the times that are far off?" Bzek. 
12 : 27. To-morrow thou wilt, hereafter thou wilt : 
as well thou hadst said nothing ; as good thou hadst 
said, "Never," as, "Not yet." Speak, soul; wilt thou 
give thyself to the Lord, wilt thou presently ? If thou 
wilt, how long wilt thou ahide with him ? Wilt thou 
not endorse on thy deed of gift a power of revocation ? 
Wilt thou not repent, not return again from heaven 
to earth? Wilt thou he chaste, and play the harlot 
no more? Wilt thou he faithful. to the death, obe- 
dient to the death ? Is this thy voice : "I have opened 
my mouth to the Lord, and I cannot go hack. As 
the Lord liveth, nothing hut death, no, not death 
itself, shall part thee and me : I am persuaded, I am 
resolved that neither life, nor death, nor angels, nor 
principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor 
things to come, nor height, nor depth, nor any other 
creature, shall separate me from the love of God, or 
withdraw me from Jesus Christ my Lord?" 


Now, soul, gather up all this together ; stand thoti 
before the Lord, the God of all the earth, and this 
once more answer. Wilt thou have Jesus Christ for 
thy Husband? Dost thou choose him for thy Lord? 
"Wilt thou cleave to him in love? Wilt thou lean 
upon him for righteousness and strength for right- 
eousness, to pay thy debts, and for strength, to pay 
thy vows? Wilt thou be subject to him? Thou 
knovvest the commandments, how holy, how strict 
they are ; wilt thou obey them in all things ? Wilt 
thou exercise thyself to godliness in the strictness of 
it? Wilt thou be a thorough disciple? Wilt thou 
not content thyself with such a cold or lukewarm in- 
difference in religion, as thy lazy flesh will bear ; as 
thy credit, thy safety, or the temper of the times will 
bear ? Wilt thou follow thy Lord fully ? Wilt thou 
take up thy lot with Christ, be it better or worse? 
Shall his Father be thy Father, his inheritance be thy 
inheritance ; yea, and his sufferings thy sufferings ; 
his stripes, his bonds, his poverty be thine? Wilt 
thou espouse not his crown only, but his cross too ? 
Yfherever he goes, wilt thou go ; where he dwells, 
wilt thou dwell ? Wilt thou say, Wherever my Lord 
is, there let his servant be ? Wilt thou forsake all 
others; all thy sins? Wilt thou be made clean? 
Wilt thou give up thy fleshly lusts to be purged out? 
.Does thy heart stand disengaged from every sin ? Is 
there not any one iniquity, concerning which thy 
heart says, Let this stay with me ? Wilt thou search 
cut thy sins ? Wilt thou accomplish a diligent search, 
sweep every corner, search every chamber of thy heart 


and life ? Wilt thou go down to the bottom of thy 
great deep to find out what lodges there ? Wilt thou 
faithfully endeavor no more to allow thyself in any 
known iniquity ? Wilt thou use all (rod's means for 
conquering and casting out all sin? Wilt thou 'forsake 
the world ? Wilt thou cast away thine idols ? Shall 
thy mammon be no more a god nor a demigod to thee? 
Shall it neither carry away thy heart from him, nor 
so much as share with him in it ? Wilt thou not bow 
down to this golden image, nor serve it ? Wilt thou 
no longer serve thy greedy appetite ? Shall thy heart 
no longer go after thy covetousness ? Wilt thou aban- 
don thine estate, thy pleasures, thine honors, thy 
friends and companions, so far as any of these divide 
or entice, or steal away thy heart from thy Lord? 
Whenever they say, Come away, wilt thou say, G-et 
you hence ? Wilt thou forsake the, devil ? Wilt thou 
fear, and fly from, and no longer hearken to his temp- 
tations ? Wilt thou no longer regard his promises nor 
his threatenings ; his flatteries nor his frowns ? Com- 
ing off from the tents of all these, wilt thou cleave 
unto thy Lord from henceforth, from this day forward, 
and not depart from him for ever ? Wilt thou hold on 
thy course ? Wilt thou run out thy race ? Wilt thou 
be faithful to the death? Wilt thou hope to the end 
for the grace that shall be brought unto thee at the 
revelation of Jesus Christ ? 

What sayest thou? If thou sayest, No, as the 
Lord liveth, thou speakest this word against thine own 
life. If thou refusest to enter into this covenant, thou 
sayest, "I will not be the Lord's, I will none of him, 


I will not live ; let death and wrath and chains and 
plagues "be my portion for ever. I will not be the 
Lord's, I will not leave my sins and my pleasures and 
my companions for his love ; I will die, and will not 
see life." Mistake not thyself, be not deceived, it is 
a matter of life and death that is ^before thee. It is 
whether heaven or hell, a (rod or no Grod, a Christ or 
no Christ, a soul or a lost soul, everlasting life or 
everlasting fire shall be thy portion, that stands now 
to be determined, by thy consent or refusal ; look to 
it, be wise, this once for eternity. Consent, and thou 
art 'blessed ; consent, and he is thine, and with him 
the kingdom. Thy Lord hath given his consent al- 
ready ; view the handwriting, the whole New Testa- 
ment, which is written in blood, and sealed as it is 
written. There thou hast his "I will" in every line 
almost, visible before thee ; put to thy hand, and it is 
done. "What say est thou? Dost thou consent? Shall 
thy heart come in and put to thy hand, and subscribe 
for thee, "I will?" Let that be done, and then say 
after me, 


most dreadful (rod, for the sake of thy Son, I 
beseech thee, accept of thy poor prodigal now pros- 
trating himself at thy door. I have fallen from thee 
by mine iniquity, and am by nature a son of death, 
and a thousand-fold more the child of hell by my 
wicked practice ; but of thine infinite grace thou hast 
promised mercy to me in Christ, if I will but turn to 


tliee with all my heart ; therefore, upon the call of thy 
gospel, I am now come in ; and throwing down my 
weapons, submit myself to thy mercy. 

And because thou requirest as the condition of my 
peace with thee, that I should put away mine idols, 
and be at defiance with all thine enemies, which I 
acknowledge I have wickedly sided with against thee, 
I here from the bottom of my heart renounce them 
all, firmly covenanting with thee not to allow myself 
in any known sin, but conscientiously to use all means 
that I know thou hast prescribed for the death and 
utter destruction of all my corruptions. And where- 
as I have formerly inordinately and idolatrously let 
out my affections upon the world, I do here resign 
my heart to thee who madest it ; humbly protesting 
before thy glorious Majesty, that it is the firm resolu- 
tion of my heart, and that I do unfeignedly desire 
grace from thee, that when thou shalt call me here-*- 
unto, I may practise this my resolution, through.thy 
assistance, to forsake all that is dear unto me in this 
world, rather than to turn from thee to the ways of 
sin ; and that I will watch against all its temptations, 
whether of prosperity or adversity, lest they should 
withdraw my heart from thee; beseeching thee also 
to help me against the temptations of Satan, to whose 
wicked suggestions, I resolve, by thy grace, never to 
yield myself a servant. And because rny own right- 
eousness is but filthy rags, I renounce all confidence 
therein, and acknowledge that I am of myself a hope- 
less, helpless, undone creature, without righteousness 
or strength. 


And forasmuch as thou hast of thy. "boundless 
mercy offered most graciously to me a wretched sin- 
ner to be again my Gfod through Christ, if I would 
accept of thee, I call heaven and earth to record this 
day, that I do here solemnly avouch thee to be the 
Lord my God, and with all possible veneration, bow- 
ing the neck of my soul under the feet of thy most 
sacred Majesty, I do here take thee the Lord Jehovah, 
Father, Son, and Holy G-host, for my portion and 
chief good, and do give up myself, body and soul, for 
thy servant, promising, and vowing to serve thee in 
holiness and righteousness all the days of my life. 

And. since thou hast appointed the Lord Jesus 
Christ the only means of coming unto thee, I do here 
upon the bended knees of my soul accept of him as the 
only new and living way by which sinners may have 
access to thee, and do here solemnly join myself in 
the marriage-covenant to him. 

blessed Jesus, I come to thee hungry and poor, 
and wretched and miserable, and blind and naked, a 
most loathsome, polluted wretch, a guilty, condemned 
malefactor, unworthy to wash the feet of the servants 
of my Lord, much more to be solemnly married to 
the King of glory. But since such is thine unparal- 
leled love, I do here with all my power accept tliee, 
and do take thee for my Head and Husband, for bet- 
ter for worse, for richer for poorer, for all times and 
conditions, to love, honor, and obey thee before all 
others, and this to the death. I embrace thee in all 
thine offices : I renounce mine own mrworthiness, and 
do here avow thee to be the Lord my righteousness. 


I renounce mine own wisdom, and do here take thee 
for mine only guide. I renounce mine own will and 
take thy will for my law. 

And since thou hast told me that I must suffer if 
I will reign, I do here covenant with thee to take my 
lot as it falls with thee, and hy thy grace assisting, 
to run all hazards with thee, verily supposing that 
neither life nor death shall part between thee and me. 

And because thou hast been pleased to give me 
thy holy laws as the rule of my life, and the way in 
which I should walk to thy kingdom, I do here will- 
ingly put my neck under thy yoke, and set my 
shoulder to thy burden, and subscribe to all thy 
laws, as holy, just, and good. I solemnly take them 
as the rule of my words, thoughts, and actions ; prom- 
ising that though my flesh contradict and rebel, yet 
I will endeavor to order and govern my whole life 
according to thy direction, and will not allow myself 
in the neglect of any thing that I know to be my 

Only, because through the frailty of my flesh I am 
subject to many failings, I am bold humbly to pro- 
test that unallowed miscarriages, contrary to the set- 
tled bent and resolution of my heart, 'shall not make 
void this covenant ; for so thou hast said. 

Now, Almighty God, searcher of hearts, thou 
knowest that I make this covenant with thee this day, 
without any known guile or reservation ; beseeching 
thee, that if thou seest any flaw or falsehood therein, 
thou wouldst discover it to me, and help me to do it 


And now, glory "be to ih.ee, G-bd the Father, whom 
I shall be bold from this day forward to look upon as 
my God and Father, that ever thou shouldst find out 
such a way for the recovery of undone sinners. Glory 
be to thee, God the Son, who hast loved, me, and 
washed me from my sins in thine own blood, and art 
now become my Saviour and Redeemer. Glory be to 
thee, G-od the Holy Ghost, who by thine almighty 
power hast turned my heart from sin to God. 

dreadful Jehovah, the Lord God omnipotent, 
Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, thou art now become 
my covenant Friend, and I through thine infinite grace 
am become thy covenant servant. Amen. So be it. 
And the covenant which I have macle on earth, let it 
be ratified in heaven. 




COME, ye people beloved, you that are highly fa- 
vored : the Lord is with you. Blessed are you among 
men. The lines are fallen to you in a pleasant place, 
yea, you have a goodly heritage. Come and enter 
upon your lot ; let your hearts be glad, let your glory 
rejoice. But that your joy may be full, hearken to 
these following counsels. 

I. MAKE SURE YOUR INTEREST in the .covenant. 
Rejoice not in that which is none of thine. Make 
sure ; all lies upon this ; your life and all the coin- 
forts and concerns of it, both your eternal safety here- 
after and your success in all the parts of your Chris- 
tian course here, depend on your interest in the cove- 
nant. "What .have you, if Christ be not yours ; and 
what have you in Christ, if you be not in covenant ? 
Whence are your hopes, either of mercy at last, or of 
prospering in any thing at present, -but from the cove- 
nant of promise ? And what have you thence, if your 
name be not in it ? give not rest to yourselves, till 
this be put out of doubt; whatever duties you per- 
form, whatever ease or hope you find hereupon, what- 
ever transport of affection you feel in your hearts, in 
the midst of all inquire, "But am I in covenant?" 
How shall I know that ? you will say. Why, make 


a strict and narrow inquiry whether those special 
graces already mentioned be wrought within you. 
Common mercies, though even these are covenant 
mercies to the saints, yet will not prove themselves 
so to be ; but special graces will be their own evidence. 
Things outward fall alike to all : No man Imoweth 
love or hatred by aught that befalls him. Eccl. 9 : 1. 
Thou mayest be a son or an alien, notwithstanding all 
that thou enjoyest or sufferest here ; but there is not 
one of the forementioned graces but is a child's por- 
tion, God's mark upon the heart, to distinguish chil- 
dren from strangers. Prove that thou truly knowest 
the Lord, hast one heart, a tender heart, etc., and 
thou therein provest thyself to be a child of prom- 
ise. Read over the descriptions that have been given 
of these graces; observe diligently where the main 
difference lies between common and special grace; 
compare thy heart with it, and thereby thou mayest 
give a judgment of thy state. If it be yet question- 
able whether such evidence be found or not, sit not 
down till thou hast obtained it ; but having obtained, 
maintain it carefully. The hidden manna will never 
breed worms by long keeping. Content not yourselves 
that you once had peace ; it will be but a poor liveli- 
hood you will get out of what is wasted and lost. 
Get you good evidences that Gfod is yours, and keep 
them by you till you need them no more. Grace is 
your best evidence ; cherish and preserve it. G-et a 
seeing eye, and keep your eye open; get a single 
heart, and let it not be again divided ; get a tender 


heart, and keep it tender.: let the love and fear of God 
be acted in holy obedience. An obedient, gracious, 
watchful, active life will keep grace in heart; and 
flourishing grace will speak for itself and you. Look 
not that the Lord should so far countenance your 
declinings to a more fleshly, careless state, as to 
smile upon you in. such a state ; God will not be an 
abettor to sin. Count upon it, that your grace and 
peace, your duty and comfort will rise and fall to- 
gether ; suspect those comforts that accompany you 
into the tents of wickedness, and forsake you not 
when, you forsake your God. Keep up your spirits, 
and then lift up your heads, keep needfully on your 
way, and your joy shall no man take from you. Par- 

1. Keep close to God. Keep thyself under his eye 
arid influences. As both thy grace and thy comforts 
had their birth, so must they have their nourishment 
from heaven, Lose the sight of the sun, and darkness 
follows. Let thine eyes be towards the hills. Let 
divine love be the pleasure of thy life. Let it be thy 
Lord's cord upon thy heart, let it bind thee to him ; 
he loves captives, let thine ear be bored to the thresh- 
old ; be familiar in heaven, keep thine acquaintance 
there, and be at peace ; chide back thy gadding heart : 
"Soul, whither art thou going? who hath the words 
of eternal life ?" Let the interviews of love between 
thy Lord and thee be constant ; let them not be lim- 
ited to some few holy days of thy life. Count not 
thou hast lived that day, in which thou hast not lived 
with God. 


Keep close to God by keeping close to duty. Keep 
close to duty, and keep close to G-od in duty. Call 
not that a duty which thou canst not call communion 
with God. Make not duty to do the work of sin, by 
taking God out of sight. Let not prayer, or hearing, 
or ordinances he instead of God to thee. Such pray- 
ing and hearing there is among many ; hut know not 
thou any thing for religion, wherein thou meetest not 
with God. 

Behold the face of God, hut "behold his face in 
righteousness. Psalm 17 : 15. It is ill looking on 
God with a bloodshot eye. Guilt upon the heart will 
be a cloud that will make the sun as darkness to thee. 
"Walk in the light of the Lord. Walk in the light, as 
he is in the light. In thy light the holiness of thy 
life thou shalt see his light. The light of his holi- 
ness in thee, will be attended with the light of his 
countenance upon thee. By the light of his counte- 
nance, thou wilt both see thyself in ,the way to thy 
hopes, and learn thy way more perfectly. " Make thy 
face to shine upon thy servant, and teach me thy 
statutes." Psalm 119 : 135. God hath many ways 
of teaching : he teaches by book, he teaches by his 
finger, he teaches by his rod ; but his most comfort- 
able and effectual teaching is by the light of his eye. 
Send forth thy light and thy truth, let them lead me, 
let them bring me to thy holy hill. 

2. Keep hold on Christ. He is thy peace. Ap- 
pear not before God, but in the blood of the Lamb ; 
let him carry up thy duties ; and own not that for a 
comfort which is not brought thee by his hand. Let 


him be thy way to the Father, and thy Father's way 
to thee. Keep fresh upon thy heart the memory of 
his death and satisfaction, and let that be thy life 
and thy hope. Hast thou cast anchor on this rock ? 
loose not thy hold ; hang, upon the horns of the altar. 
Thou canst not live, but there ; if thou must die, 
say, But I will die here. Put forth fresh acts of faitH v ^ 
every day and hour. Believe, believe, believe, arid & 
thou shalt be established. Fall not into unbelief ;, ^ 
then thou art gone ; thou departest from the living t 
God. Heb. 3:12. ; ~^1 

3. Quench not the Spirit. Observe and obey his* $ 
motions: when he excites, get thee on; when he v 
checks, get thee back ; know the holy from the evil 
spirit, by its according or differing with the Scriptures ; 
reject that spirit in the heart that is not .the same 
with the Spirit in the word. Try the wind, what and < 
whence it is, by the card and compass : to the law 
and to the testimony. And when thou perceivest it 

is from above, hoist up thy sails, and get thee on. ' 
Quench not the Spirit : grieve not the Holy Spirit of ij 
Grod, whereby thou art sealed to the day of redemp- 
tion. AJ. 

4. Keep in with conscience. Make not thy wit- 
ness thine enemy. Deal friendly with it; thou wilt 
need its good word, which thou canst not have if it 
receive blows from thee. It will not learn this lesson, 
to speak good for evil: or if thou shouldst compel it 
to do so, thou art undone; if an abused conscience 
speak peace, it becomes thy traitor. 

Gfive due respect to conscience. Let it abide with 


thee in peace and in power. Keep up its authority 

as God's vicegerent. Next under (rod, commit the 

keeping of thy soul to conscience; as the Lord hath 

made, so do thou make it superintendent in thy soul; 

the judge and overseer of all thy motions and actions. 

Let conscience counsel thee, and tell thee thy way; 

let conscience quicken thee, and put thee on in thy 

;"\way; let conscience watch thee, that thou turn not 

y'j'Jbut of thy way; let conscience check thee, and restore 

i v ^ * j 1 

%H' lathee into thy way. Wherever thou goest, carry con- 
J^V'science along with thee ; carry conscience into thy 

J *'^' r ' '*,- **'"""' 

' > closet, let it watch how. thou behavest thyself there; 
1 ' carry conscience into thy shop, let it eye what thou 
* doest there ; carry conscience into thy fields, into the 
p market, among thy friends, among thine enemies, let 
f " ' it observe how, thou behavest thyself among them ; 
i carry conscience with thee to thy recreation, to thy 
| * "bed, to thy table : wherever thou goest, there is like 
to be but sad work, if conscience be not with thee. 

Commit the keeping of thy covenant to con- 
science: let it be the ark in which the tables of the 
testimony are kept and preserved; let it.be the exec- 
utor of tlry testament. Conscience is bound from sin 
by the covenant; the covenant lays hold upon it, let 
it lay hold on thee. Is thy conscience bound, seek 
not to be loosed; is thy conscience bound, -give it 
leave to bind thy whole man. Let it bind thy 
thoughts, and bind thy will, and bind thy affections, 
and bind thy tongue, and thy whole practice ; thou 
never livest as a mail in covenant, longer than thou 
livest as a man of conscience. What becomes of the 

Heaven Opened. 1 (} 


him be thy way to the Father, and thy Father's way 
to thee. Keep fresh upon thy heart the memory of 
his death and satisfaction, and let that be thy life 
and thy hope. Hast thou east anchor on this rock ? 
loose not thy hold ; hang upon the horns of the altar. 
Thou canst not live, but there ; if thou must die, 
say, But I will die here. Put forth fresh acts of faith 
every day and hour. Believe, believe, believe, and 
thou shalt be established. Fall not into unbelief; 
then thou art gone; thou departest from the living 
G-od. Heb. 3:12. 

3. Quench not the Spirit. Observe and obey his 
motions: when he excites, get thee on; when he 
cheeks, get thee back ; know the holy from the evil 
spirit, by its according or differing with the Scriptures; 
reject that spirit in the heart that is not the same 
with the Spirit in the word. Try the wind, what and 
whence it is, by the card and compass : to the law 
and to the testimony. And when thou perceivest it 
is from above, hoist up thy sails, and get thee on. 
Quench not the Spirit : grieve not the Holy Spirit of 
Clod, whereby thou art sealed to the day of redemp- 

4. Keep in with conscience. Make not thy wit- 
ness thine enemy. Deal friendly with it; thou wilt 
need its good word, which thou canst not have if it 
receive blows from thee. It will not learn this lesson, 
to speak good for evil : or if thou shouldst compel it 
to do so, thou art undone; if an abused conscience 
speak peace, it becomes thy traitor. 

Give due respect to conscience. Let it abide with 


tliee in peace and in power. Keep up its authority 
as God's vicegerent. Next under Grod, commit the 
keeping of thy soul to conscience ; as the Lord hath 
made, so do thou make it superintendent in thy soul; 
the judge and overseer of all thy motions and actions. 
Let conscience counsel thee, and tell thee thy way; 
let conscience quicken thee, and put thee on in thy 
way ; let conscience watch thee, that thou turn not 
out of thy way ; let conscience check thee, and restore 
thee into thy way. Wherever thou goest, carry con- 
science along with thee ; carry conscience into thy 
closet, let it watch how thou behavest thyself there ; 
carry conscience into thy shop, let it eye what thou 
doest there ; carry conscience into thy fields, into the 
market, among thy friends, among thine enemies, let 
it observe how thou hehavest thyself among them; 
carry conscience with thee to thy recreation, to thy 
bed, to thy table : wherever thou goest, there is like 
to be but sad work, if conscience be not with thee. 

Commit the keeping of thy covenant to con- 
science : let it be the ark in which the tables of the 
testimony are kept and preserved ; let it be the exec- 
utor of thy testament. Conscience is bound from sin 
by the covenant ; the covenant lays hold upon it, let 
it lay hold on thee. Is thy conscience bound, seek 
not to be loosed ; is thy conscience bound, give it 
leave to bind thy whole man. Let it bind thy 
thoughts, and bind thy will, and bind thy affections, 
and bind thy tongue, and thy whole practice ; thou 
never livest as a man in covenant, longer than thou 
livest as a man. of conscience. What becomes of the 


covenant, when a breach is made upon conscience ? 

what is there worth having where conscience is not? 
"What faith, or truth, or peace is there left alive? 
What are vows and covenants and promises ? "What 
are our duties to the Lord, our dealings with men, 
when there is no conscience towards God ? Keep thy 
conscience, and thou keepest thy soul; keep thy con- 
science, and thou keepest thy covenant; keep thy 
covenant, and thou keepest thy peace; let that go, 
and all is lost. 

Let conscience govern what God hath put under 
its power, and let it resist all adverse power. Let it 
resist temptations. Whenever Satan and thy flesh 
fall upon thee, and tempt thee, saying, Pity thyself, 
spare thyself, take thy liberty, take thine ease, take 
thy pleasure, provide for thy safety; what need is 
there of so much ado? why canst thou not take the 
same liberty, and allow thyself the same latitude as 
others do ? they have souls as well as thou, and they 
have dangers as well as thou, and they have hopes as 
well as thou, and they have reasons and understand- 
ings to know what they do as well as thou; and why 
canst thou not be content to do as they ? Why, let 
this be thy answer: "But what conscience is there 
for it? With what conscience can I be idle, when I 
have said I will be doing ? With what conscience can 

1 take mine ease, when I have said I will take pains? 
With what conscience can I serve my flesh, when I 
have said I will crucify it? With what conscience 
can I love this world, when I have said I will renounce 
it? With what conscience can I walk at liberty, when 


I have said I will walk circumspectly? If all this 
were more than needs far he it from me to have 
such a thought, till the serving my Grod, and the sav- 
ing my soul, be more than needs but if it were more 
than needs, yet is it any more than I am bound to ? 
Are there any such liberties put into my indentures? 
Was there any exception made of this duty, or that 
duty ? "Was there any limitation made to this meas- 
ure or that measure 'hitherto will I go, and no fur- 
ther; this little I will do, and no more?' "Was there 
any such proviso put in as this, 'I will serve the 
Lord, provided I may with ease or with safety ?' Have 
I not solemnly engaged to the Lord, to obey him in 
all things, to follow him fully, to love him and serve 
him with all my heart, with all my soul, with all my 
strength, and this to the death? And 0, shall I lie 
unto (rod? Is it more than needful to be righteous, 
and to keep my faith? Come, my soul, come on; 
thou hast opened thy mouth to the Lord, and thou 
must not go back." Be true, be honest; be honest, 
though thou must suffer for it. Remember what thy 
mouth hath spoken, and see that thou fulfil it with 
thy hand. 

Keep conscience pure. It is the book in which all 
thy records are written; let no blot be upon thy book. 
Beware of sinning against conscience. Every sin 
against conscience is a blot upon conscience; and 
blots upon conscience are blots upon thy covenant- 
evidence : thou wilt not be able to read whether there 
be any thing written there for thee or not. Ah, fool- 
ish soul, what art thou doing? Dashing out all thy 


hopes with thine own hand. Beware tliou content 
not thyself with blotted evidences. 

Christians, forget not this counsel; keep your 
evidences clear. He who hath his whole estate in 
bonds or writings, how carefully will he keep them ! 
If these be torn, or lost, or so blurred that they can- 
not be read, he is undone. Whatever else be lost, if 
his money be gone, if his goods be lost, if house be 
burnt, yet if his writings be safe, he is well enough. 
take heed, and keep your writings safe and fair; 
keep your title to your God clear, and you can never 
be poor and miserable. Whatever earth or hell can 
do against you, till they can tear the covenant of 
your God, or make you blot out your own names, 
they have left you abundantly enough, even when 
they have left you nothing. 

how highly are we concerned to be tender of 
conscience, and yet how little care is there taken of 
it ! "What is become of the authority of conscience, 
when thy thoughts and thy passions, when thine eyes 
and thine ears, thine appetite and thy tongue are left 
unbridled and unconquered ? When every servant is 
set up to be master, and bears rule in thee, where is 
thy conscience what is become of its authority? 
When thy soul has been no better kept, what pov- 
erty and leanness is there grown upon it, what a 
starveling is it become both in grace and peace, eaten 
out with lust, evaporated into vanity, sunk into sen- 
suality, thy spirit even transubstantiated into flesh, 
ready to perish and die away, for want of good look- 
ing to! When thy soul has been no better kept, 


where is thy conscience? When thy covenant has 
been no better kept ; when thy duties thou hast vowed 
to perform are so hastily and heedlessly shuffled over, 
if not totally thrust aside ; when thy hours of prayer 
are such short hours, thy sabbaths such winter days, 
so short and so cold too ; when thy God is so shame- 
fully neglected, can never hear of thee but when thou 
hast nothing else to do, and perhaps not even then ; 
when thy spare hours are hardly spared for G-od; 
when this earth, thy corn and thy cattle and thy 
pleasures and thy friends, which thou hast vowed to 
renounce, are let in again upon thy heart, and have 
stolen it away from heaven, where is thy conscience ? 
"When thou sleepest so, and hast let the enemy come 
in and sow his tares in thy field ; when thou art such 
a busybody in other men's matters, and thine own 
vineyard thou hast not kept, but hast let it lie fallow, 
like the field of the sluggard, all overgrown with thorns 
and nettles ; when both thy heart and thy house are 
so much out of order ; when thy wife and thy chil- 
dren and thy servants are left at random, to do all 
that is right in their own eyes ; when more care is 
taken for thy cattle, than for thy sons and daughters ; 
when thy house is a very hospital of blind and lame 
and sick souls, ready to die for want of instruction 
and good discipline, where is thy conscience? And 
if conscience be not, where is thy covenant ; and if 
thy covenant be not, where is thy G-od and thy 
peace? . 

Ah, conscience, where art thou ? What is become 
of that good thing committed to thee, yea, what is 


become of thee ? Ah, soul, where is thy peace ? How 
is the keeper of thy peace laid low, and the covenant 
of thy peace broken! What, peace while no con- 
science ? And what hast thou left, while no peace ? 
Ah, Lord, thy treacherous dealers, how treacherously 
have they dealt with thee ; thy children have forgotten 
thee, thy servants are runaways from thee. Thou art 
our Father, but where is thine honor ? Thou art our 
Master, but where is thy fear ? "We are thy servants ; 
but where is our faith? Ah, Lord, we have dealt 
falsely in thy covenant. Return, Lord, return ; 
replace thy watchmen, recover thine honors, reclaim 
thy wanderers, restore conscience, revive our peace,' 
cause us to return, and renew our. covenant ; and re- 
member, break not thou thy covenant with us. 

Christians, let us bewail lost conscience, and let 
it be recovered ; let us weep over our dead, and let 
their souls return into them. Let those of us that 
have obtained grace to be faithful and watchful and 
tender, rejoice and take heed : let him that standeth, 
take heed lest he fall. G-o on in the name of the 
Lord: remember his counsels; keep close by Grod, 
keep hold on Christ, quench not the Spirit, keep in 
with conscience ; keep thy heart, keep thy garments, 
keep up thy watch, keep on thy way, finish thy 
course, keep the faith; and then let the devil do his 
worst, thy peace shall be extended to thee as a river, 
and established as a rock; and thou shalt be able 
.to say, in the words and in the faith of the apostle, 
" Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of right- 
eousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, shall 


give me at that day ; and not to me only, "but unto 
all them also that love his appearing." 

III. Add to your covenant YOUR SACRIFICE. "Gath- 
er my saints together unto me, those that have made 
a covenant with me "by sacrifice." Psalm 1 : 5. God 
has made with you, and he expects that you make 
with him a covenant by sacrifice. Sacrifices were 
seals of the covenant. As God's part of the covenant 
was sealed, so our part also must he sealed, and sealed 
with Hood : his with the Hood of his Son ; ours, with 
the Hood of pur sins. "I beseech you therefore, 
brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present 
your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto 
God." Rom. 12:1. The sacrificing of ourselves to 
the Lord comprehends in it three things alienation, 
dedication, oblation. 

1. Alienation, or the passing away of ourselves 
from ourselves : "Ye are not your own, ye are bought 
with a price." Thus he hath said, and he expects 
that we should say also, True, Lord ; I am not mine 
own. * 

2. Dedication, or the passing over ourselves to 
the Lord: "Ye have consecrated yourselves to the 
Lord." 2 Chron. 29 : 31. His we are by purchase, 
but he expects that we be his also by donation : his 
we are by conquest, but he expects we should be his 
by consent also. Though he may challenge us as 
his right, yet the most acceptable claim is, when he 
hath us by gift. "When our hearts say, I am thine, 
Lord; then his heart will answer, Soul, thou art 


3. Oblation, or the actual surrender or offering 
up ourselves to Mm. In the offering of this sacrifice 
is included the immolation or slaying of it. We must 
slay ourselves, in a spiritual sense be mortified, be 
crucified with Christ, and so offered up a sacrifice to 
him. You will say, How is it then required that we 
offer up ourselves a living sacrifice ? I reply, we are 
never truly alive till we are dead. "Ye are dead, 
and your life is hid with Christ in G-od." Col. 3 : 3. 
"When our flesh is dead, our spirit is life. Rom. 8 : 10. 
As the apostle, "That which thou sowest," so that 
which thou sacrificest, "is not quickened, except it 
die." 1 Cor. 15 : 36. It is only the mortified Chris- 
tian that is a living sacrifice. 

Christians, come and sacrifice yourselves to the 
Lord, come and slay your sacrifices, and so offer them 
up. Your sacrifice is slain, when your carnal self, 
your "old" man, is crucified with Christ, and the 
body of sin destroyed, Rom. 6:6; when the wisdom 
of the flesh is crucified, and made to vanish before 
the wisdom of G-od ; when the will of the flesh is sub- 
dued, and swallowed up of the will of God ; when 
the lusts of the flesh are vanquished, and made cap- 
tives by the law of God. 

Christians, it may be you are willing to make 
your claim to the covenant of God, but have you 
made covenant with him? You have entered into 
covenant with God, but will you confirm your cove- 
nant by sacrifice? You will give yourselves a sacri- 
fice to the Lord, but is your sacrifice slain? Is the 
wisdom of the flesh made foolishness? How is it with 


your carnal wills ? Is the will of the flesh broken and 
brought into subjection, yielding itself up to the Lord? 
for an emptying of wills into the will of God ! "What 
wilt thou do ; what wilt thou have? Canst thou reply, 
"Nothing but what God will: what the Lord will 
have me do, or avoid, or suffer, I can no longer say 
him nay. Is this the will of God, my sanctification? 
so it is mine. Is this the will of God, my humilia- 
tion? so it is mine. Is this the will of God, my trib- 
ulation? so it is mine. Is God for holiness? through 
grace, so am I. Is God for his own will? so am I. 
This is all the will I have, that the Lord may have 
his will, of me may be all to me, have all from me, 
rule all in me, and dispose of all that concerns me." 

How: is it with your carnal affections, and fleshly 
lusts; are these slain? Are your covetousness, your 
sensuality, your pride and envy, your carnal joys and 
fears and worldly sorrows, destroyed ; those wildfires 
of passion and fury and rage, are these quenched? 
Come, put the knife to the throat of all these, and 
then there is a sacrifice for God. Go and offer it 
up, and let it be a freewill-offering, and a thank- 

A freewill-offenng. Offer yourselves willingly to 
the Lord. "Thy people shall be willing in the day 
of thy power." Psa. 110 : 3. may that glorious 
day dawn upon us! God loves a cheerful giver; 
offer up your hearts with all your heart; grudge not 
what the law requires, but bless God that he will 
accept of an offering : this has a comfortable signifi- 
cation If the Lord had meant to destroy us, he 



would not have accepted an offering at our hands.* 
Judges 13 : 23. 

A thank-offering. Offer unto God thanksgiving, 
and pay thy vows unto the Most High. Offer up 
yourselves in token of your thankfulness to the Lord. 
Be ye both the priests, and the lambs for the sacrifice. 
Present yourselves to the Lord as the accomplish- 
ment of his covenant, as the fruits of the death of 
your Redeemer, as the trophies of his victory, as the 
spoils which he hath recovered from death and hell, 
making a show of them openly, that it may be seen 
that the promise of God is not of none effect, and 
that Christ did not die in vain. Let your Lord Jesus, 
when he comes down into his garden, where he left 
his blood, reap his pleasant fruits, and carry up your 
purified souls as the signals of his glorious achieve- 
ment. Offer up your sins to the Lord; these unclean 
beasts will be an acceptable sacrifice. There is more 
real honor growing up to the Lord from one mortified 
saint, than from ten thousand anthems from the most 
seraphic tongues. Offer up your duties to the Lord ; 
your obedience for a sacrifice. To obey is better than 
sacrifice, than thousands of rams, and ten thousands 
of rivers of oil. Let your whole life be this sacrifice. 
Let every day be a sabbath, every duty an eucharist, 
every member a cymbal, sounding out the praises of 
God. Offer up the calves of your lips unto the Lord. 
let your souls be filled with wonder, and your 
mouths with praise. 

"Whence is this to me," said Elizabeth, "that 
the mother of my Lord should come to me?" Luke 


* 1 : 43. whence is this to us, that the Lord our 
Father should come, and come so near to us? 
whence is it that the mighty God should indenture, 
and come into bonds with sinful man? That he who 
was free from all men should make himself debtor to 
any ? That the high and lofty One, who inhabits eter- 
nity, should dwell in houses of clay, and pitch his 
tabernacle in the dust ? That he who humbleth him- 


self to behold the heavens, should come down into the 
earth; and after what is he come down, but after so 
degraded a creature as man ? That he should make 
a league with stones of the ground, with beasts of the 
field, and creeping things; should espouse dust and 
ashes, and gather up vile worms into his bosom; 
should set his heart upon shadows, and adopt the 
refuse of the earth for sons and daughters to himself; 
should raise the poor out of the dust, and the beggar 
from the dunghill ; should do such great things, and 
should choose the foolish and the weak and the base 
and the contemptible, and bestow on them among all 
the world these high honors ; should make them the 
head and the honorable, whom the world has made 
the off-scouring of all things; should give himself to 
be the portion, his Son to be the ransom, his kingdom 
to be the heritage of -bankrupts, prisoners, and cap- 
tives? Lord, what is man, that thou art thus mindful 
of him? Soul, what is Grod, that thou shouldst be yet 
unmindful of him? How is it that the tongue of the 
dumb is not yet loosened, that the feet of the lame do 
not leap as a hart? 

what is that love whence this strange thing has 


broken forth? This is the womb that bare thee ; hence * 
has thy righteousness sprung forth; hence have thy 
dignities, thy astonishing hope and joys arisen to 
thee ; this is it that yearned upon thee in thy misery, 
that reprieved thee from death, redeemed thee from 
darkness, rescued thee as a brand out of the burning ; 
that pitied thee in thy blood, washed thee from thy 
blood, spared thee, pardoned thee, reconciled thee, 
and brought thee, an enemy, a rebel, a traitor, into a 
covenant of peace with the Grod of glory. Ah, con- 
temptible dust; that ever there should be such com- 
passionate contrivances, and such astonishing conde- 
scensions of the eternal Deity, towards so vile a thing! 
love the Lord, all ye his saints. bless the Lord, 
ye beloved, ye people near unto the Lord. Alas, that 
our hearts should be so narrow, that the waters should 
be so shallow with us. "Where are our eyes, if we be 
not yet rilled with wonders ? "What hearts have we, if 
we have not yet filled our lips with praise ? Open all 
thy springs, my soul; let them flow forth in streams 
of love and joy ; let every faculty be tuned and strained 
' to the height ; let heart and hands and tongue and 
eyes lift up their voice : be astonished, Heavens ; 
be moved, ye strong foundations of the 'earth; fall 
down, ye elders; strike up, ye heavenly choir; lend, 
poor mortals, your notes, to sing forth the high praises 
of God, who rideth on the heavens, and has caused us 
to ride on the high places of the earth, and made us 
sit together in heavenly places, showing forth the 
exceeding riches of his grace, in his kindness to us in 
Christ Jesus. 


Awake up, my glory, /awake, psaltery and harp; I 
myself will awake right early: my soul doth magnify 
the Lord, and my spirit hath rejoiced in G-od my 
Saviour; for he that is mighty hath done for me 
great things, and holy is his name. Blessed Ibe the 
Lord God of Israel, who hath visited and redeemed 
his people, who hath raised up a horn of salvation 
for us in the house of his servant David, who hath 
laid help on one who is mighty, and. exalted one cho- 
sen among the people, and hath given him for a cov- 
enant to them. Bless the Lord, my soul, and all 
that is within me Hess his holy name, who hath 
redeemed thy life from destruction, and crowned thee 
with loving-kindness and tender mercies. Salvation to 
our God that sitteth on the throne, and to the Lamb. 
Let the redeemed of the Lord say so. Worthy is 
the Lamb that was slain, to receive power and 
riches and wisdom and strength and glory and honor 
and blessing; for thou livest, and wast dead, and art 
alive for evermore. Thou 'hast redeemed us to God 
by thy blood, out of every kindred and tongue and 
people and nation ; and hast made us kings and priests 
unto our G-od for ever. Hallelujah, hallelujah ! 







1. BRING yourselves, and hold yourselves to a FRE- 

must be performance, or there cannot he a right per- 
formance. As to those that pray not, or pray hut 
seldom, it is a plain sign that the root of the matter 
is not in them ; they that can live without prayer, are 
dead while they are alive. Prayer is the first-fruits 
of Christianity : it was said of Saul, as a token that 
he was a convert, " Behold, he prayeth." The liv- 
ing child comes crying into the world ; and as it is a 
token of life, so it is a means by which this new life 
is nourished. Prayer is a Christian's key to unlock 
the storehouses and the treasuries of souls : to him 
that can pray, God has given a key to all his treas- 
uries. . Prayer will not only unlock the clouds, as 
Elijah's prayer did, and "bring down rain to refresh 
the dry and par.ched earth, but it will unlock heaven 


too. It will unlock the ark and the mercy-seat, and 
bring down spiritual blessings on the soul. Praying 
is a Christian's knocking at the gate of heaven, that 
knocking to which the promise is made, "Knock, and 
it shall he opened." Matt. 7 : 7. The word which the 
Lord speaks to us is G-od's knocking at our doors : 
" Behold, I stand at the door and knock." Rev. 3 : 20. 
And praying is our knocking at the Lord's door, at 
the gate of heaven, that this may "be opened. By the 
way, learn that if you will not hear God's knock, it 
is 'just in him not to hear yours. If- G-od's voice may 
not be heard on earth, your voice will not be heard in 
heaven. . Yet fear not, you shall be heard if you will 
hear ; hear him that speaks to you from heaven, and 
your cry shall enter into heaven. 

Our souls will never thrive or flourish, unless the 
rain and the showers of heavenly grace descend and 
fall upon them ; and we cannot look that those show- 
ers should come down, unless we look up. Persons 
that pray not, may be classed among the heathen: 
" Pour out thy fury upon the heathen, that know thee 
not, and upon the families that call not on thy name," 
Jer. 10:25; and among the profane ones of the earth, 
who are described by this character: They are all 
together become filthy and abominable, there is none 
that doeth good ; they call not upon the Lord. Psalm 

" Be ye sober, and watch unto prayer." 1 Peter, 
4:7. Be ye instant as well as constant in prayer ; 
set up your resolutions, and set your time ; set your 
time, and keep your time. Do not put off this duty 


by pretending you pray always, every day and every 
hour: as the pretence of an every-day's Sabbath 
comes just to no Sabbath, 'so it is usually in the case 
of prayer; some carnal wretches' "praying always," 
is not praying at all. " Get thee into thy closet," 
saith Christ; get thee a place, set thee a time, 
wherein thou mayest make it thy business to seek 
the Lord. 

II. Come to pray with an actual and great EX- 
Do not barely impose this duty upon yourself, as your 
task, but excite and encourage yourself to it, by 
looking for a return ; think what it is that you would 
have, and look to receive it. The reason why we 
obtain no more in prayer, is because we expect no 
more. God usually answers us according to our own 
hearts : narrow hearts and low expectations receive 
usually as -little as they look for or desire: large ex- 
pectations are ordinarily answered with large returns. 
Expectation will put life into action : you will pray 
with most enlarged hearts, when you are most full of 
hopes ; the reward that is looked for in the evening, 
will much encourage and quicken the labor of the 
day : fear not to expect too much from heaven. Be 
not straitened in your own heart, and you shall not 
be straitened in the God of compassion: open thy 
mouth wide, and he will fill it. God will never up- 
braid his beggars for looking for too great an alms ; 
he has enough to supply them, and he has a heart to 
bestow it. God will never say to you, You are too 
bold, you ask too .much too much grace, too much 


holiness; why cannot less content you? God has 
given you commission to ask what you will, not to 
the one half, but the whole of his kingdom ; the king- 
dom you shall have, if no less will serve your turn. 

Christians, he thankful for every little you receive, 
but look for much: be thankful for every little, every 
little received from God is much. A drop from that 
fountain is worth the world, yet content not yourselves 
with some drops, when, if you will, the fountain may 
be yours. The King of glory loves to give like a king, 
and will never say, This is too much either for a king 
to give, or a beggar to receive ; since he has given 
you leave, spare not to speak in full your desires. 
God has promised you, and therefore you may prom- 
ise yourselves ; whatever you ask,, that is good for 
you, you shall not ask in vain. if we had so 
much in our eye when we come before the throne of 
grace, we should be oftener there, and yet still return 
with our load. Well, Christians, remember this when- 
ever you come to beg look to receive, come not to 
prayer as to an empty cistern that will yield no water. 

III. Learn the skill to PLEAD WITH GOD in prayer. 
Though the Lord be willing to give to those that ask, 
yet he will have them first prove they are in earnest. 
Great store of arguments he has furnished us with 
to press him withal, but he will have us use them : 
we must strive with God if we will prevail, and the 
best striving is with his own weapons. The counsel 
I give you in this is, Plead hard with God, but plead 
with him upon his own arguments: there are, among 
many others, these four grounds on which to found 


your plea on Gfod himself; on Christ; on the prom- 
ises ; on experiences. 

1. On God himself. And there are two special 
things from which you may plead here. 

(1.) His gracious nature. Draw your arguments 
by which you plead with God for mercy, from the 
same source whence he originally drew his arguments 
for showing mercy from his own compassion, from 
his gracious nature, from his natural goodness, and 
gracious inclination to mercy : " Grod so loved the 
world, that he gave his only begotten Son." John 
3 : 16. "Having predestinated us unto the adoption 
of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to 
the good pleasure of his will, to the praise of the 
glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted 
in the Beloved ; in whom we have redemption through 
his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the 
riches of his grace ; wherein he hath abounded tow- 
ards us in all wisdom and prudence ; -having made 
known unto us the mystery of his will, according to 
his good pleasure, which he hath purposed in himself." 
Eph. 1 : 5-9. Here we have heaped up in a few 
words the riches of mercy which (rod hath bestowed 
on his people. Christ his beloved, redemption through 
Christ, the forgiveness of our sins, the adoption of 
children, acceptance in his sight, the revelation of 
the mystery of his will, or the discovering or making 
known these glorious mercies to us. 

But whence is all this ? Who is it, or what was 
it, that persuaded the Lord to this abundant kind- 
ness? Why, all this arose from himself. He -pur- 


posed it in himself. He consulted no other argument 
but what he found in his own heart. It was from his 
love, the good pleasure of his will, his grace, the riches 
of his grace, wherein he hath abounded towards us. 
Hosea 11 : 8, 9. "How shall I give thee up, Ephraim ? 
How shall I deliver thee up, Israel ? I cannot do it, 
I will not do it. I will not execute the fierceness of 
mine anger, I will not destroy Ephraim." But why 
wilt thou not be angry, Lord; why wilt thou not 
destroy Ephraim? "0," says the Lord, "my heart 
is turned within me ; my heart says, Spare him ; my 
compassion says, Destroy him not. I am God, and 
not man. I love him, and my love is the love of a 
God. I have compassion on him, and my compassion 
is the pity of a God : I will hear with him, I am a 
God of patience : love is my nature ; pity and mercy 
and compassion are my nature: I cannot destroy 
Ephraim, but by denying mine own nature." Love 
and pity and mercy and goodness are essential to 
God. He can as soon cease to be God, as to be gra- 
cious, and this is the fountain of all our mercy ; hence 
Christ sprung, hence the gospel came, and all the 
unsearchable riches of mercy prepared for poor lost and 
undone creatures. 

"When you come to pray, draw your arguments 
hence. Plead with the Lord upon his own nature, 
his natural love, grace, and goodness. Thus we find 
the apostle Peter praying for the Christians to whom 
he wrote : " The God of all grace make you perfect ; 
stablish, strengthen, settle you." 1 Pet. 5 : 10. Plead 
with the Lord in your prayers, as the psalmist pleads 


with himself in liis affliction: "Will the Lord oast off 
for ever, and will he he favorahle no more ? Is his 
mercy clean gone for ever ; doth his promise' fail for 
evermore ? Hath God forgotten to he gracious ; hath he 
in anger shut up his tender mercies ?" Psa. 77 : 7-9. 
That men should he merciless, that men should forget 
their friends in their low estate, is no such wonder. 
But hath God, who is all grace, all mercy, all pity, 
hath God forgotten? Doth mercy cease to he mer- 
ciful, grace cease to he gracious? Do compassions 
cease to he pitiful? ' Hath God not only forgotten his 
servant, "but forgotten himself? Remember thyself, 
Lord ; thine own heart, thine own soul, and according 
to it, remember me. 

(2.) Plead his glorious name. The Lord's nature 
is to he gracious, and according to his nature, such is 
his name: "The Lord, the Lord God, merciful and 
gracious, long-suffering, and abundant in goodness 
and truth." Exod. 34 : 6. This is an argument which 
the Lord puts into the mouths of his people, telling 
them, "I had pity for my holy- name; I do not this 
for your sakes, hut for my holy name's sake." Ezek. 
36 : 21, 22. And upon this argument we find them 
frequently pleading with him : " For thy name's sake, 
lead me and guide me." Psa. 31 : 3. " Do not abhor 
us ; for thy name's sake, do not disgrace the throne 
of thy glory : remember, break not thy covenant with 
us." Jer. 14 : 21. Go you and do likewise. 

2. Found your plea on Christ. And there are 
four things from which you may plead with God upon 
this account. 


The Lord's giving Christ to you as your Lord 
and your Saviour. Upon which gift, you may call 
him your own. 

The purchase of Christ, who has bought from the 
hands of the Father all that you stand in need of. He 
has bought your lives : "Ye are bought with a price." 
\ Cor. 6 : 20. He has bought you a livelihood, has 
purchased an inheritance and possession for you. 1 
Peter, 1. 

The interest that Christ has in the Father, being 
the Son of Grod, the Son of his love, the Servant of 
God, in whom his soul delights: "Behold my ser- 
vant whom I have chosen, mine elect, in whom my 
soul delighteth," Isa. 42 : 1, whose name is so pre- 
cious and powerful with the Father, .that it will carry 
any suit, obtain any request: "Whatsoever ye shall 
ask the Father in my name, he will give it you." 
John 16 : 23. 

The interest that you have in Christ. As he is 
precious to his Father, so you are precious to him ; 
as' the Father can deny him nothing, so he can deny 
his people nothing: "Whatsoever ye shall ask in my 
name, that will I do." John 14 : 13. He gives you 
commission to put his name upon all your requests, 
and whatsoever prayer comes up with this name upon 
it, he will procure it an answer. 

Now when you are praying for any mercy, espec- 
ially for any soul-mercy, make use of all these argu- 
ments: "Lord, hast thou given Christ unto me, and 
wilt thou not with him give me all things I stand in 
need of? Hast thou given me the fountain, and wilt 


thou deny me the stream? "When I beg pardon of sin, 
when I beg power against sin, when I beg holiness, 
is not all this granted me in thy gift of Christ to me ? 
Is Christ mine, and is not his blood mine to procure 
my pardon, his Spirit mine to subdue my iniquities ? 
Are these mine, and wilt tliou withhold them from 
me? 0, shall this guilt lie upon me, these sins live 
in me, these lusts rule over me, when by giving me 
in hand that whereof tliou hast already given me a 
grant, all this would be removed from me ? Look 
upon Christ, Lord ; thou hast said to me, ' Look unto 
Jesus,' and give thy servant leave to say the same to 
thee. Look thou upon Jesus, and give out to me 
what thou hast given me in giving him to me. Look 
upon the purchase of Christ: do I want any thing, or 
desire any thing but what my Lord has bought and 
paid for, and thou hast accepted of the price ? Look 
upon the name of Christ, which thou mayest behold 
written upon every prayer I make ; though thou may- 
est say, ' For -thy own sake thou shalt have nothing, 
not a drop, not a crumb,' yet wilt thou say, 'Nor for 
his name's salve neither ?' Is not that name still a 
mighty name, a precious name before the Lord ?" By 
these hints you may learn how to plead with God 
from any other arguments drawn from his promises, 
your experience, etc. 

QUESTION. These arguments the saints may' use 
in 'prayer ; but is there no plea for poor unrenewed 
men, that are yet in their sins, to make use of? "What 
may they say for themselves, when they come before 
the Lord? Have you never a word to put in their 


moutlis ? they have more need of arguments than any. 
What shall they say? 

ANSWER. I shall premise that it is the duty of 
mere natural men to pray: for, 1. Prayer is a part 
of God's natural worship. If there were no positive 
law requiring it, yet the law of nature enjoins it, and 
no man is exempted from the obligation of the law 
of nature. 2. Otherwise it were none of their sin to 
neglect and restrain prayer ; where no law is, there 
is no transgression. Now we find in Scripture, that 
neglect of prayer is reckoned up among wicked men's 
sins : "They are all together become filthy, they call 
not upon the Lord." Psa. 14 : 3, 4. Sin, though it 
doth disable, yet doth not release from duty. 

"When a sinner, being struck with a sens'e of his 
sin, and of his necessity of changing his way, and of 
his utter inability to turn of himself, under the fears 
and troubles of his heart goes to G-od and cries out, 
"Lord, what shall I do? I see I am in an evil case, 
my soul is running on in sin, and thy curse and wrath 
I behold running on upon me: Lord, save me; Lord, 
help me; Lord, pardon, Lord, convert me, break me 
off from my sins, break me off from my sinful com- 
panions ; I cannot get loose, my heart is too hard, my 
lusts are too strong, my temptations are too many 
for me to overcome myself: Lord, help me ; turn me 
and I shall be turned ; pluck my foot out of the snare, 
that I be not utterly destroyed ; forgive mine iniquity, 
make me a clean heart, make me thy child, make 
me thy servant, that I may never again yield up my- 
self a servant to sin." To such a prayer as this, if it 


be hearty and in earnest, if there he . no promise of 
audience, yet at least there is a half promise. Who 
can tell ? It may be the Lord will hear. 

Consider that sinners, if they have but a heart to 
it, have also a price in their hands; God has put 
arguments into their mouths also, to plead with him 
for mercy, as, 

1. The grace of God, or his gracious nature his 
readiness to show mercy; this even strangers may 
lay hold upon. 

2. God's call or gracious invitation, "Ho, every 
one that thirsteth, come ye to the waters, and he that 
hath no money; come ye, buy and eat; yea, come, 
buy wine and milk, without money and without 
price." Isaiah 55 : 1. "Look unto me, and be ye 
saved, all the ends of the earth." "Come unto me, 
all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give 
you rest." Rise, sinner, he calleth thee: go to the 
Lord, and when thou goest tell him, "Lord, thou hast 
bid me come, and behold here I am; I come, Lord, 
at thy word, I come for a little water, I come for thy 
wine and thy milk; I have brought no price in my 
hand, but thou hast bid me come and buy without 
money and without price. Though I have no grace, 
yet behold, at thy word I come for grace; though I 
have no Christ, yet I come for Christ ; though I can- 
not call thee Father, yet being called, I come to thee 
as fatherless; with thee the fatherless shall find 
mercy. If I am not thy child, may I not be made 
thy child ? Hast thou not a child's blessing left yet 
to bestow upon me ? Thou hast bid me come, and 


come for a blessing. Bless me, even me also, Lord. 
"Wherefore hast thou sent for me ? Shall I be sent 
away as I came? I come at thy word; do not say, 
Begone, out of my sight. I cannot go at thy word ; 
I will not go ; for whither shall I go from thee ; thou 
hast the words of eternal life ? Since thou wilt have 
me speak, Lord, answer ; though. I dare not say, 'Be 
just to me, a saint,' yet I do say, I will say, I must 
say, ' Lord, be merciful to me a sinner.' " 

3. Plead Christ, And there are two things in 
Christ which sinners may plead with God. . 

His. sufficiency. There is enough in Christ, in his 
obedience and death, to save the worst of sinners, to 
save the whole world of sinners. There is a fulness in 
Christ, " It pleased the Father, that in him should all 
fulness dwell." Col. 1 : 19. There is a fulness of 
merit to obtain pardon, to make reconciliation for 
whoever comes; a fulness of the Spirit to sanctify 
and cleanse them from their sins. "He is able to 
save unto the uttermost all those that come unto 
God by him." From this, sinners may reason thus 
with the Lord : Lord, I do not come to beg that of 
thee which cannot be had ; tkhi hast enough by thee ; 
look upon Jesus that sits at thy right hand : is there 
not righteousness enough in him to answer for all my 
unrighteousness ; are there not riches enough in him 
to supply my poverty? Hear, Lord; send me not 
away without an alms, when thou hast it by thee. 

His office which is to bring sinners to God, to 
make reconciliation for sinners, to make intercession 
for. transgressors. Isa. 53 : 12. " Thou haft received 

Heaven Opened, 17 


gifts for men, yea, for the rebellious also." Psa. 68 : 18. 
What a strange and mighty plea is here for poor sin- 
ners ! " 0, it is true, Lord, I am a transgressor, and 
have been from the womb ; I have played the traitor, 
and been a rebel against thee all my days ; but is 
there none in heaven that will intercede for a trans- 
gressor ? Has the Lord Jesus received no gift for this 
poor rebel, that falls down before thee? Though I am 
a rebel, Lord, yet I am a returning rebel: though 1 
am a rebel, "yet let me receive a rebel's gift -not a 
rebel's terrible reward, but some of those gifts which 
Christ received for the rebellious. Does Christ make 
intercession for transgressors, and shall not he be 
heard ? If thou wilt not hear me who am a sinner, 
yet wilt thou not hear Him that speaks for sinners, 
whose blood speaks, whose mercy speaks, whose Spirit 
speaks ? Does he speak for sinners, and yet not for 
me ?" 

4. Plead your own necessity. Sinners are neces- 
sitous, they have nothing of value left them; -in the 
fulness of their sufficiency they are in straits. As a 
sinner of a hundred years is. but a child, so a sinner 
of thousands by the year is but a beggar poor, mis- 
erable, blind, and naked: he may feel the want of 
nothing, and yet lack every thing that is good. Sin 
has stripped him to the skin, stabbed him to the 
heart; the iron has entered into his soul, it has left 
him nothing but wounds and bruises and putrefying 
sores. It is thy case, sinner, and hast thou nothing 
to say? Spread thy wants and necessities before the 
Lord, and let these speak for thee. 


Open thy wounds and thy sores, toll himhow^des- 
perately sad thy case is, tell him of the guilt that is 
upon thy head, the curse that is on thy back, the 
plague that is in thy heart, and let this be thy plea: 
" Grod of compassion, look hither; behold what a poor, 
blind, dead, hardened, unclean, guilty creature, what 
a naked, empty, helpless, creature I am: look upon 
my sin and my misery, and let thine eye affect thy 
heart. One deep calls to another ; a deep of misery 
cries out to a deep of mercy. 0, my very sins, which 
cry so loud against me, speak also for me. My misery 
speaks ; my curses, the woe. and the wrath that lie 
upon me speak ; my bones speak, my perishing soul 
speaks, and all cry in thine ears, Help, Lord Grod of 
pity, help, help and heal me, help and save me ; come 
unto me, for I am a sinful man, Lord : I dare not 
say as once it was said, Depart from me, for I am a 
sinful man: come, Lord, for I am a sinful man. Thou 
couldst never come where there is more need: who 
have need of the physician but the sick? Come, Lord ; 
I have too often said, 'Depart from me,' but if thou 
wilt not say, 'Depart,' to me, I hope I shall never 
again say, Depart, to thee. My misery saith, Come ; 
my wants say, Come ; my guilt and my sins say, 
Come; and my soul saith, Come. Come, then, and 
pardon, come and convert, come and teach, come and, 
sanctify, come and save me ; even so, come, Lord 

Thus you have the sinner's plea. Poor sinner, art 
thou willing to return from thy sins ? fear not to go 
to thy God. Go, and the Lord help thee, give thee 


thy 'heart's desire, and fulfil all thy mind ; and for thy 
encouragement take along with. thee this scripture: 
"Seek ye the Lord while he may he found, call ye 
upon him while he is near : let the wicked forsake his 
way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts; and let 
him return unto the Lord, and He will have mercy, 
upon him; and to our God, for He will ahundantly 
.pardon. 1 " Isa. 55 : 6, 7. 




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