(navigation image)
Home American Libraries | Canadian Libraries | Universal Library | Community Texts | Project Gutenberg | Children's Library | Biodiversity Heritage Library | Additional Collections
Search: Advanced Search
Anonymous User (login or join us) Upload
See other formats

Full text of "The Christian's Daily Walk"

This is a digital copy of a book that was preserved for generations on library shelves before it was carefully scanned by Google as part of a project 
to make the world's books discoverable online. 

It has survived long enough for the copyright to expire and the book to enter the public domain. A public domain book is one that was never subject 
to copyright or whose legal copyright term has expired. Whether a book is in the public domain may vary country to country. Public domain books 
are our gateways to the past, representing a wealth of history, culture and knowledge that's often difficult to discover. 

Marks, notations and other marginalia present in the original volume will appear in this file - a reminder of this book's long journey from the 
publisher to a library and finally to you. 

Usage guidelines 

Google is proud to partner with libraries to digitize public domain materials and make them widely accessible. Public domain books belong to the 
public and we are merely their custodians. Nevertheless, this work is expensive, so in order to keep providing this resource, we have taken steps to 
prevent abuse by commercial parties, including placing technical restrictions on automated querying. 

We also ask that you: 

+ Make non-commercial use of the files We designed Google Book Search for use by individuals, and we request that you use these files for 
personal, non-commercial purposes. 

+ Refrain from automated querying Do not send automated queries of any sort to Google's system: If you are conducting research on machine 
translation, optical character recognition or other areas where access to a large amount of text is helpful, please contact us. We encourage the 
use of public domain materials for these purposes and may be able to help. 

+ Maintain attribution The Google "watermark" you see on each file is essential for informing people about this project and helping them find 
additional materials through Google Book Search. Please do not remove it. 

+ Keep it legal Whatever your use, remember that you are responsible for ensuring that what you are doing is legal. Do not assume that just 
because we believe a book is in the public domain for users in the United States, that the work is also in the public domain for users in other 
countries. Whether a book is still in copyright varies from country to country, and we can't offer guidance on whether any specific use of 
any specific book is allowed. Please do not assume that a book's appearance in Google Book Search means it can be used in any manner 
anywhere in the world. Copyright infringement liability can be quite severe. 

About Google Book Search 

Google's mission is to organize the world's information and to make it universally accessible and useful. Google Book Search helps readers 
discover the world's books while helping authors and publishers reach new audiences. You can search through the full text of this book on the web 

at |http : //books . google . com/ 


3 3433 06826269 4 

Digitized by VjOOQ iC 


d by Google 

d by Google 



d by Google 


















^rff Digitized by Google 


Printed by W. Collins St Co. 

d by Google 


It is well known that though Christianity was ' per- 
secuted by the Jews from the very outset of its pro- 
mulgation, it was some time befor^ this religion 
provoked the wrath or the^intolerance of the Romans. 
The truth is, that on the part of the government at 
Rome, there was a very general connivance at re- 
ligion in all its numerous varieties. And the reason 
of this was, that under the system of Paganism no 
one variety, or modification, was thought to exclude 
another. Each country was conceived to have its 
local deity-— and each element of Nature to have its 
own pervading spirit-— and each new god of the 
provinces over which they extended their power, of- 
fered no disturbance to the habits of their previous 
iheology, but was easily disposed of, by the bare ad- 
dition of anotner name to the catalogue. At this 
rate there was no conflict, and no interference. By 
learning the religion of another country, they simply 
extended their acquaintance with the world of su- 
pernatural beings ; just as by the conquest of that 
country, they extended their acquaintance with the 
visible and the peopled world around them. In such a 
capacious and elastic creed as that oC Pag;BxC\%\cv, 

Digitized byV:iOOQlC 


there was room enough for all the superstitions of all 
people. The sincerest possible homage for the gods 
of one territory, admitted of an homage equally sin- 
cere for the. gods of another territory. Nay, by the 
same solemn act of worship, they may, each and all of 
them, have been included, at one time, in one general 
expression of faith and reverence. And this is the 
whole amount of the boasted tolerance of antiquity. 
We may easily perceive, how, in exception to this 
general spirit, Christianity, from being the object of 
lenity, and even of occasional protection by the Ro- 
man power, soon became the victim of its fiercest 
|)ersecutioris. For a few years, its character and 
pretensions were not distinctly understood. It 
seems in truth, to have been regarded as a mere 
speciality of Judaism, and even though it had par- 
taken . of all the narrowness of the parent religion 
from which it sprung, yet would it have continued 
to share in the same immunities, had it maintained 
the same indolent contempt for the idolatry of the 
surrounding nations. But when it made a farther 
development of its spirit; when it began to be felt in the 
force of its active proselytism ; when it was seen, that 
it not only admitted of no compromise with the 
articles of another faith, but that it aimed at the 
overthrow of every religion then in the world ; when 
men at last perceived, that instead of quietly taking 
its place among their much-loved superstitions, it 
threatened the destruction of them all ; then, though 
truth and argument were its only weapons, did the 
success with which they were wielded as much offend 
and terrify the world, as if they had been the wea- 
pons of ordinary warfare; and though Jesus Christ 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


would have been welcomed to a share of divine hon- 
ours along with other deities, were his followers 
resisted even unto* blood, when they advanced his 
claim, not to be added to the list of those deities, 
but utterly to discard and dethrone them. 

Now, it may be thought that there can be nothing 
analogous to this process in the present day, and 
within the limits of Christendom. But the truth is, 
that what obtained among the literal idolaters of a 
former age, is still most strikingly exemplified by 
those of the present, who in the spiritual and sub- 
stantial sense of the word, are chargeable with the 
whole guilt of idolatry. There may be among us 
the most complacent toleration for a mitigated and 
misconceived Christianity, while there is no tolera- 
tion whatever for the real Christianity of the New 
Testament. So long as it only claims an assigned 
place in the history of man, while it leaves the heart 
of man in the undisturbed possession of all its native 
and inborn propensities — so long as it confines itself 
to the demand of a little room for its Sabbaths and 
its decencies, while it leaves the general system of 
human life to move as before, at the impulse of 
those old principles which have characterized the 
mind of man throughout all the generations of the 
world— -so long as it exacts no more than an occa- 
sional act of devotion, while it suffers the objects of 
wealth and fame, and temporal enjoyments, to be pro- 
secuted with as intense and habitual a devotion as 
ever — ^above all, so long as the services which it im- 
poses are not other than the services which would 
have been rendered at all events to the idol of inter- 
est, or the idol of reputation; then Christianity, so far 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


from being the object of ^y painlul recoil on the 
part of man^^ is looked upon, by very tnaay in society, 
as a $eemJy and most desirable appendage to the whole 
mass of their other concerns. It is addmitted to fill 
up what would be felt as a disagreeable vacuity. The 
man would positively be out of comfort, and out of 
adjustment without it. Meagre as his Christianity 
may be, the omission of certain of its rites, and cer- 
tain of its practices, woiild give him uneasiness. It 
has its own place in the round of his affairs, and^ 
though what remains of the round is described very 
much in the way it would hav^ been, had there been no 
Christianity in the matter; yet would the entire and 
absolute want of it make him feel, as if the habit of 
his life had undergone a mutilation, as if the complete- 
ness of his practical system had suffered violence. 

And thus it is, that Christianity, in a moderate 
and superficial form, may be gladly acquiesced in, 
while Christianity after it comes to be understood in 
the magnitude of its pretensions may be utterly 
nauseated. When it offers to disturb the deep 
habit and repose of nature — when .instead of taking 
its place among the other concerns and affections of 
a disciple, it proceeds to subordinate them all— — 
when instead of laying claim to a share of human 
life, it lays claiip to the sovereignty over it— -when 
not satisfied with the occasional homage of its wor- 
shippers, it casts a superintending eye over their 
hearts, and their business, and their lives, and pro- 
nounces of every desire which is separate from the 
will and the glory of God, that it is tainted with 
the sin of idolatry, — when it thus proposes to search 
and to spiritualize, with the view of doing away all 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 

that 18 old, and of making every thing new, ancient 
Rome was never more in arms for her gods, than 
modem humanity is in arms for het obstinate habits, 
and her longing propensities. And yet if Christianity 
would tolerate na^lre, nature would in return tolerate 
Christianity. She would even o£Per to her the compro- 
mise of many hours and many services. She would 
build temples, to hter honour, and be present at all 
her saeratnehts. We behold an exhibition of this 
sort every day among the decent and orderly pro- 
fessors of our faith; and, it is not till this antipathy 
be provoked by a full disdosure of the spirit and 
exactions of the gospel, that the whole extent of 
that antipathy is known. 

We may expatiate on the social or civil virtues, 
such as justice, for example, without coming into 
collision with the antipathies of nature. Even 
woildliuess herself may listen with an approving ear 
to the most rigid demonstration of this virtue. For 
though justice be a required offering at the shrine 
of the go&pel of Jesus Christ, it may also be, and it 
often U, both a required, and a rendered offering at'^ 
the shrine of honour and interest. The truth is, 
that a man may have his heart fully set upon the 
world ; and a portion on this side of time may be 
the object in which he rests, and upon which all his 
desires do terminate; and yet, he may not feel him- 
self painfully thwarted at all by the demand of an 
honesty the most strict and unviolablc. A compli- 
ance with this demand may not break up his other 
idolatries in the least. In the practice of a truth 
and an integrity as unlimited as any law of Crod can 
impose, may he be borne rejoicingly along on the 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 

full tide of prosperity ; and by every new accession 
to his wealth, be multiplying the ties which fasten 
him to the world. There is many an intense votary 
of gain, who will bear to be told that he should be 
perfectly fair and upright in the prosecution of it, 
and who will not bear to be told, that the very in- 
tensity of this prosecution marks him out as a child 
of earthliness — makes it manifest, that he is striking 
all his root^ into a perishable foundation — ^provea 
him to be the victim of a disease, the symptoms of 
which lie much deeper than in his external conduct 
— proves him, in short, to be unsound at heart, and 
that, with a principle of life which will survive the 
dissolution of all that is visible, he, in strenuously la- 
bouring after its fancied interest, is fast heaping upon 
it the wretchedness of eternity. That morality 
which, barefy ventures to regulate the path that he 
is now walking toward the objects of this world's am- 
bition, he will tolerate and applaud. But the mo- 
rality which denounces the ambition, the morality 
which would root out the very feelings that hurry 
him onwards in the path ; which bids him mortify 
his affections for all that this world has to offer; 
which tells him not to set his mind on any 
created thing, but to set his mind on the Creator, 
and to have nothing farther to do with the world, 
than as a plac^ of passage and preparation for an 
abode of blessedness in heaven, — ^the morality which 
tells him to cease his attachment from those things 
with which he has linked the ruling desires, and all 
tbe practical energies of his existence,— >such mo- 
raKty as this, be will resist with as much strenuous- 
ness as he would do a process of annihilation. The 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


murderer who offers to destroy his life ^ill not be 
shrunk from in greater horror, or withstood in a 
firmer spirit of determination, than the moralist who 
would force from him the surrender of affections 
which seem to be interwoven with his very being, 
and the indulgence of which has conferred upon it 
all the felicities of which he has yet experienced it 
to be capable. A revolution so violent, looks as 
repulsive as death to the natural man; and it is also 
represented under the image of death in the Scripture. 
To cease from the desire of the eye, is to him a 
change as revolting as to have the light of the eye 
extinguished. To cease from the desire of the flesh 
is to crucify the flesh. To cease from the pride of 
life, is to renounce the life of nature altogether. 
In a word, to cease from the desire of the old man, 
is not to turn, but to destroy him. It is to have 
him buried with Christ in baptism. It is to have 
him planted together with Christ, in the likeness 
of his death. It is not to impress a movement, but 
to inflict a mortification. 

But there is another very general misapprehension 
of peculiar Christianity, as if it dispensed with service 
on the part of its disciples, as if it had set aside the 
old law of works, and thus superseded the necessity 
of working altogether, as if in some way or other, 
it substituted a kind of lofty mysticism in the place 
of that plain obedience which is laid down for us by 
the ten commandments— sweeping away from its 
new dispensation the moralities and observances of the 
old one, and leaving nothing in their place but a 
kind of cabalistic orthodoxy known only to the ini* 
tiated few, and with the formal profession of which' 
they look mightily safe and mifi^htily satii 

J O / O Digitized by \ 


Now we cannot become acquainted with Chri»*- 
tianity without perceiviirg that after the traosition 
has been made from the old econony to the new, 
there is a service. This trati3ition is signified by 
images expressive of the total change that is made 
in our relations and circumstances, when we pass 
from Nature to the GospeI--*as the dissolution of a 
first marriage, and the entrance upon a secood-— 
a dying and a coming alive again— a release from 
one master, even the law, who formerly had the do-^ 
minion over us, and an engagement with another 
master, even God, under whom we are to bring forth 
the fruit that is lovely and acceptable in his sighlc— 
all marking the very wide dissimilarity that there is 
between the two states, and that when we have 
crossed the line of separation between them, we 
have indeed got into another region, and breathe 
another atmosphere altogether from what we did 
formerly— and yet there continues to subsist a 
service performed no doubt in a different spirit, and in 
a different manner from what it was before, but 
still a service. And indeed it is quite manifest, 
from the apostolical writings, that the life of a Chris** 
tian is expected to be ail in a glow with labour and 
exertion, and manifold activity — not spent in the 
indolence of>mystic contemplation, but abounding in 
work, and work too persevered in with immoveable 
stedfastness, and emanating from a zeal that ever 
actuates and ever urges on to the performance of it. 
This is the habit of a disciple upon earth, and it 
would appear to be his habit even after he is trans- 
ported into heaven : " There thy servants serve 
thee." So that whether we look to those years 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 

whicb are preparatory to our entering upon the in* 
beritance of glory, or to the eternity, in which the 
inheritance itself la enjoyed ; still we find that aader 
the economy of grace there is a busy^ strenuous, and 
ever»doing service. It is not in fact by exemption 
from service, but by the new spirit and principle 
wherewith the service is actuated, that tlie economy 
of grace stands distinguished from the economy of 
the law. We are delivered from the law, not that we 
should be delivered from the service of obedience, 
but that we should serve in newness of spirit, and 
not in the oldness of the letter. 

The^rst remark that we offer, in the way of illus- 
trating (his distinction between the new and tiie 
old economy, is, that there is indeed a very different 
spirit between two men, one of whom works, and 
that most incessantly, from the love that he bears 
to the wages, and the other of whom works, and 
that just as incessantly, from the unconquerable 
taste and affection which he has for the work itself. 
It is conceivable that the servant of some lordly 
proprietor, is remunerated according to the quan- 
tity of game which he fetches from the woods 
and the wastes of that ample domain over which 
he expatiates-^and that, under the dominion of a 
thirst for lucre, from morning to niglit he gives him- 
self up to the occupation of a hunter. But it is 
conceivable of another, that the romance and ad- 
venture and spiritist irring hazard and variety of 
such a life are enough to fasten him, and that most 
intently, throughout all the hours of the day, on the 
very satoe enterprise : and thus, with a perfect like- 
ness in the outward liabit, may there be in the 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


habit and desire of the heart a total and entire dis* 
similarity. The service is the same, but the spirit 
of the service is widely dissimilar. And this may 
just hold as true of the commandments of a heavenly, 
as of an earthly masteV. The children of Israel, 
looked to the decalogue that was graven upon tablets 
of stone, and they knew that on their observation 
of it depended their possession of the land of Canaan, 
the prosperity of their seasons, and the peace of 
their habitations from the inroad of desolating 
enemies. The love they bore to their inheritance, 
is love quite distinguishable from the love they bore 
to that task which formed the tenor upon which 
they held it — and it may just be as distinguishable 
in him who seeks to purchase, by his obedience, the 
heavenly Canaan set forth to us in the gospel, and 
who thinks of this Canaan as a place of splendour 
and music and physical gratifications, who looks on- 
ward in fancy to its groves and its palaces, or who, as 
it stands revealed in perspective before him, on the 
other side of death, figures it at large as a place of 
general and boundless enjoyment, where pleasure 
ever circulates in tides of ecstacy, and at least there 
is a secure and everlasting escape from the horrors 
of the place of condemnation. A love for the work, 
and a love for the wages, are here two different affec- 
tions altogether, and to reduce them to one, you 
must present heaven in its true character, as a place 
of constant and unwearied obedience. The Israelite 
toiling in drudgery at the work of his ordinances, and 
that for the purpose of retaining his pleasant 
home on this side of death; or the formal Christian 
walking the routine of his ordinances, and that for 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


the purpose of reaching a pleasant home on the other 
side of death : either of them breathes a totally dif- 
ferent spirit from the man who finds the work of 
obedience itself to be indeed a way of pleasantness 
and a path of delight to him— who, without the 
bidding of his roaster at all, would, at the bidding 
of his own heart, just move his hand as his master 
would have him to do — who is in his element when 
engaged in the work of the commandments, and to 
whose renovated taste and faculties of moral sensa- 
tion, the atmosphere of righteousness is in itself the 
atmosphere of peace and/ joy. 

The services of two men may thus externally be 
the same, and yet, the spirit that animates the one 
and the other may just be «s different, as sordidness 
and sacredness are wide of one another. And a 
difference of spirit is every thing to him with whom 
we have to do. He sits at the head of a moral em- 
pire; and affection and motive and design are mainly 
the things of which he takes cognizance; and dis- 
cemer of hearts as he is, it is the desire of the heart 
upon which he fastens his chief attention; and in his 
judgment it is indeed a question most decisive of 
character, whether this actuating desire be love to 
the work of righteousness, or only love to wages 
distinct from the work. To serve in the first o£ 
these ways, is to serve in the newness of the spirit. 
To serve in the second of them, is to serve in the 
oldness of the letter; and the substitution of the one 
for the other, is that great achievement which the 
gospel personally and substantially makes on every 
man who truly embraces it. It forms as essential 
a part of that covenant which God makes with the 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


believer as does the forgiveness of sin. '' This is the 
covenant, that I will put niy law in his heart," When 
it only stood graven upon a table of stone* obedience 
was an affair of labour. Hut when the law is graven 
on the fleshly tablet of the hearty obedience is an 
a,(£x\v of love. It is every thing to God whether his 
service be felt by us as the drudgery of a task, or 
as the delight of a congenial employment — whether 
we painfully toil while it is doing, and are glad when 
it is over — or are pleasantly carried along, through 
all the steps of it, as of a work that we rejoice in-— 
whether it he our hope that, after the keeping of the 
commandments there will be a great reward, or it be 
our happy and present sensation, that m the keep- 
ing of the commandments there is a great reward. 
It is this which distinguishes the service of our 
heavenly from that of our earthly master. With 
the latter, after the work cometh the payment, and 
the doing of the one is a distinct and separate thing 
from the enjoyment of the other. With the former^ 
after the work done now, cometh more work ; after 
the business of using aright a few talents, cometh 
the business of ruling and of managing aright many 
things; after the praises and the services of the 
church below, come the higher services, and more 
ecstatic praises of the sanctuary above; after the 
uprightness and the piety of our present lives, com- 
eth the busy obedience of that everlasting land, 
which is called the land of uprightness: and how 
totally different then must the newness of the spirit 
be from the oldness of the letter; when, as with the 
one, the work is gone through from the mere impulse 
of a subsequent reward, which selfishness may seize 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


HpOD and appropriate to its owb indalgeoce, ao with 
the other, die work is gone dirough fiom tht impulse 
of its own Dative charm on the heart and taste oC 
the delighted labourer, who is happy in the service 
of God here, aod whose brightest anticipation is, 
that he shall be translated into the capacity of servings 
him more constantly and perfectly hereafter I 

But, secondfy, to do the work becanse of the love 
that we bear to the wage which our master gives 
us, is doing service in a spirit altogether differeut 
from that of doing the work because of the love 
that we bear to the master himself. The set and 
tendency of the heart are altogether di^nct in the 
one case from what they are in the other. In the 
first way of it, tlie heart is set altogether upon its 
own gratification, and is under the entire dominion 
of selfishness. In the second way of it, it is set 
upon the gratification of another. The two are as 
distinct, as is the spirit of him who labours with the 
reiuctancy of a slave, from the spirit of him who la- 
boors with the devotedness of a generous and disin- 
terested friend. Now this is a change in the style and 
spirit of our obedience, which it is the object of 
Christianity to accomplish. To serve God in the 
oldness of tlie letter, is to eke out by tale and by 
measure a certain quantity of work which we offer 
as an incense to his selfishness-^— and in return for 
which he deals forth upon us a certain amount of 
wages as a regale to our sel&hness back again--*- 
with as little of heart all the while in such an ex- 
change, as there is in the trafficking of mutual in- 
terest and mutual jealousy which take plaoe at a 
market. There is no love between the parties— no 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


generous delight in ministering the one to the satis- 
faction of the other— no pleasure in pleasing— no 
play of A reciprocal affection— no happiness felt from 
the single circumstance that happiness has been be- 
stowed. If this be the character of our service un- 
der the law, there is surely room for a mighty amend- 
ment, or rather for a total revolution, of its spirit and 
principle under the gospel. Even had the law been 
rigidly kept on the side of man, and its stipulations 
been rigidly fulfilled on the part of God, there would 
still have been a coldness, and a distance, and a tone 
of demand on the one side, and a certain fearfulness 
of diffidence and distrust on the other, under such 
an economy. But the fact is, that the law has not 
been kept;. and the consciousness of this perpetually 
overhung the wretched aspirant after a righteousness 
which he never could fulfil; and he. felt himself 
haunted at every footstep of his exertions by the fear 
of a reckoning; still floundering however, while failing 
at every turn, and burdened in spirit by a heavy and 
enfeebling sense of despair. And that Being can never 
be regarded with joy, who is regarded with jealousy. 
It is impossible that terror and love can both exist 
in the same bosom towards the same God. It is 
not in sentient nature to feel affection towards one 
of whom we are afraid— and so long as the contro- 
versy of tasks undone, and accounts unpaid, remained 
unsettled, there was no getting at affection towards 
God. In these circumstances, the history of man 
might be covered all over with deeds of religiousness, 
but the heart of man is bound as to its desires and 
likings, with a spell that is utterly indissoluble. 
It is frozen out of all love, by the chilling influences 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


of distrust, and terror, and. guilty consciousness. 
He would fain propitiate God for the sake of his 
own security, but he is too much engrossed with 
himself to care about pleftsing God for the mere 
sake of pleasing him. Obedience on such a princi* 
pie as this, appears to lie at an unmeasurabie dis- 
tance from him ; and if he does persevere in a sort 
of religious drudgery, done in bondage, and done in 
slavish apprehension, it is the obedience of one who 
serves in the oldness of the letter, but not in the 
newness of the spirit. 

Now to effect a transformation in the spirit of 
our services was one great design of the gospel of 
Jesus Christ — not to abolish service, we should re- 
mark, but to animate it with a new principle— not to 
set aside work, but to strike out a pure and copious 
fountain in the heart from which it might emanate*— 
to strike off those fetters by which the moral and sen- 
tient nature of man was linked, as to all affection for the 
Godhead, in a kind of dull and heavy imprisonment-*- 
and bid those feelings which had long been pent and 
stifled in imprisonment there, go freely forth, both 
with trust and with tenderness, to the Father from 
whom we had been so sadly alienated. For this 
purpose a Mediator was appointed, and the account 
now taken up and discharged by him, is no longer 
against us — ^and for our sins, we are told, if we 
would only give credit to the saying, we shall no 
more be reckoned with— and the Deity reveals him-- 
self in a new aspect of invitation to his creatures, 
and just that he may awaken the new afiections of 
confidence and love in their before fearful and su^ 
picious bosoms. We cannot love God in the fac» 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


of a debt uncancelled and of a tentenee onrecalled, 
and of a threatening that is still in force against us, 
and of mighty and majestic attributes all leagued for 
their own vindication to the object of destroying us. 
But we can love God when we are told, and we be- 
lieve what is told of the ransom that is paid, and of 
the sentence and the threatening being all already 
spent on the agonies of another's endurance, and of 
bis attributes aroused to vengeance because of sin, 
now pacified b&;ause of a sacrifice — so that mercy is 
free to send forth her beseeching calls, and, emanci- 
pated from ^ the claims of truth and justice, can now 
abundantly rejoice over all the works and perfections 
of the Godhead. The cross of Jesus Christ is not 
merely the place of breaking forth into peace and re-^ 
conciliation, but it is also the place of breaking fortli- 
into the love and new obedience of a regenerated na- 
ture. He who hath blotted out the handwriting of 
ordinances that was against us, which was contrary 
to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to his 
cross — it is he who hath slain in our hearts their 
enmity against God*-— and now that we can love God 
because he first loved ua, and sent his Son into the 
world to be the propitiation for our sins— now^ and 
now only, can we serve him in the newness of the 
spirit, and not in the oldness of the letter. 

It should be our aim then to keep our hearts in the 
love of God — and. this can only be done by keeping 
in memory the love that he hath borne unto us. 
With this afiection all alive in our bosoms, and seek- . 
ing bow. most to please and to gratify the Being 
whom it regards— let us never forget that this is his 
will, even our sanctification : that like as he rejoiced at 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


the birth of natare when on the work being j 
jilished he looked upon every thing that he had 
made, and saw in the beauty, and luxuriance^ and 
ynaiety which had just emerged from his hands, that 
all was very good— 4n like maoner, and much more, 
does he rejoice in that new creation, by which moral 
loveliness, and harmony, and order, are made to emerge 
out of the diaos of our present degeneracy. The 
righteous Lord loveth righteousness, and the specta- 
de of our worth and excellence is to him a pleasing 
spectacle— and what he wants is, to form and to mul^ 
tiply, by the regenerative power of his Spirit, the spe- 
cimens of a beauty far higher in kind than all that 
can be exhibited on the face of visible nature : and 
our truth, and our charity, and our deep repein 
tance for sin, and our ceaseless aspirations after 
loftier ^legrees of purity and godliness— *these im- 
print so m^y additional features of gracefulness on 
that spiritual creation over which the holiness of his 
character most inclines him to rejoice; and we 
knowing that this is the mind of the Deity, and lov- 
ing to gratify the Being whom we love, are furnished 
with a principle of obedience, more generous, and far 
more productive of the fruits of righteousness, than 
the legal principle, which only seeks to be square with 
the Lawgiver and safe from the thunders of his vio- 
lated authori^. There ia no limitation to such an 
obedience. The ever urging principle of love to 
God is sure at all times to stimulate and to extend 
It: and what with a sense of delight in the work itself, 
and with the sense that God whom we love delights in . 
Ae work abo and rejoices over it, is there a newness of 
split given to obedjence under the economy cS \)ci% 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


Gospel, altogether, diverse from that oldueas of the 
letter, which obtained under the economy of natun^ 
and of the law. . 

But, thirdly^ there is nothing perhaps that will 
better illustrate the distinction between service ren- 
,dered in the newness of the spirit, and service ren- 
dered in the oldness of the letter, than one simple 
reflection upon what that is which is the great ob- 
ject of the dispensation we sit under— to be fnade 
like unto God, like unto him in righteousness, and 
4ike unto him in true holiness. Now just think 
•what the righteousness of God is like. Is it right- 
eousness in submission to the authority of a lawr^ 
Js it; righteousness painfully and laboriously wrought 
•out, with a view to reward? Is it righteousness in 
pursuit of any one pleasure or gratification that is 
4it all distinct from the pleasure which the Divinity 
has in the very righteousness itself? Does not he 
desire righteousness simply because he loves it? Is 
not he holy, just because holiness is the native and 
kindred element of his Being? Do not all the 
worth and all the moral excellence of the Godhead, 
come direct from the original tendencies of his own 
moral nature? And would either the dread of pun- 
ishment or the hope of remuneration be necessary to 
attach him more than he already is, by the sponta- 
neous and unbidden propensities of his own character, 
to that virtue which has been his glory from ever- 
lasting, and to that ethereal purity in which he most 
delights to expatiate? It is not at the beck of a 
gbvernor-^it is not with a view to prepare himself 
for an appearance at some bar of jurisprudence-— it 
is nothing else in fact but the preference he bears 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


for what i^ right, and the hatred he holds for what 
ia wrong-— it £3 this, and this alone, which determines 
to absolute and unerring rectitude all the purposes 
and all the proceedings of the Deity. And to be 
like unto him, that which is a task when done under 
the oldness pf the letter must be done in newness 
of spirit, and then will it be the very transport of 
our nature to be engaged in the doing of it. What 
is now felt we fear by many as a bondage, would, 
were we formed anew in the image of him who 
preated us, become a blessedness. The burden 
of our existence would turn into its beatitude-r-and 
we, exempted from all those feelings of drudgery 
and dislike which ever accompany a mere literal 
obedience, would prosecute holiness with a sort of 
constitutional delight, and so evince that God was 
assimilating us to himself, that he was dwelling in 
us, and that he was walking in us. 

And the Christian disciple who is thus aspiring 
after that obedience, which, while it fulfils the de- 
mands of the law in the letter, is also rendered 
in newness of spirit, will find in the following 
Treatise, " Scuddeb's Christian's daily walk 
IN HOLY SECURITY AND PEACJE," a valuable com- 
panion and counsellor to guide him in every condi- 
tion of life, and under all the vicissitudes to which 
life is subject — to. instruct him how to prosecute 
his daily walk, so as to secure his peace, and to 
possess his soul in patience in .his journey through 
life, and to render the circumstances of his lot, 
whether prosperous or adverse, subservient to the 
still higher purpose of promoting his holiness and 
his growth in the divine life, to fit Viim (ot Av^ 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


heavenly rest which awaits him at the dose of his 
earthly pilgrimage. In this Treatise, the Chrktian 
disciple will learn to combine a Service the most 
rigid in the letter, with thpse principles of the'^re* 
newed heart which render it at the same time a 
delightful and an acceptable service. He will learn 
how to walk with God, while engaged in the service 
of man. It is the production of a man who had 
reached to great attainments in the spiritual life, 
and whose wise and experimental counsels are weil 
fitted to guide him amidst the doubts and difficulties 
which may beset his path in the Christian warfare. 
It has received the approving testimony of two of 
the most eminent Divines of a former age, Dr. Owen^ 
and Richard Btoter, and we know of nb work which 
better merits the high commendation which these 
competent judges have bestowed on it. 

But without expatiating on the excellencies of a 
work, the vtflue of which can only be estimated by 
those who have devoted themselves to a serious 
perusal of its pages, we shall conclude with two in- 
ferences from the prefatory observations with which 
we have kitrodueed this Treatise to the notice of 
ofor readers. The first is, that viitue, sa far from 
being superseded by the gospel, is exalted there- 
by into a far nobler, and purer, and more disinter- 
ested attribute of the character than before. It 
becomes virtue, refined from that taint of sordid- 
ness which fixrmerly adhered to it; prosecuted not 
from an impulse of selfishness, but from an impidse 
of gener(»ity— followed after for its own iake, and 
because of the loveliness of its native and essential 
charms, instead of being followed after for the sake 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


of that lucre wherewith it may be conceived to bribe 
and to enrich its Totaries. Legal virtue is rendered 
in the spkit of a mercenary^ who attaches himself 
to the work of obedience for hire. Evangelical 
virtue is rendered in the spirit of an amateur, who, 
in attaching himself to the work of obedience, finds 
that he is already in the midst . of those very de- 
lights, than which he cares for none other in time, 
and will c»-e for none other through eternity. The 
man who slaves at the employment to escape the 
penalty or to secure the pay, is diametrically the 
reverse of that man who is still more intensely de- 
voted to the employment than the other, but be- 
cause he has devoted to it the taste and the affec- 
tions of bis renovated nature. . There is a well of 
Water struck out in his heart, which springcth up 
unto spiritual life here, and unto everlasting life 
hereafter. There is an angelic spirit which has 
descended upon him from above; and which likens 
him to those beings of celestial nature, who serve 
God, not from the authority of any law that is 
without, but from the impulse of a love that is 
within; whose whole heart is in the work of obe- 
dience, and whose happiness is without alloy, just 
because their holiness is without a failing and with- 
out a flaw. The gospel does not expunge virtue ; 
it oiily elevates its character, and raises the virtue 
of earth on the* same platform with the virtue of 
keaven. It causes it to be its own reward; and 
prefers tbe disciples of Jesus Christ from the con- 
dition of hirelings who serve in the spirit of bon- 
dage, t<> the condition of heirs who serve thieir recon- 
eiied Father in the spirit of adoption; who love 
B Vi 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


what be loves, and, with a spirit kindred to his 
own> breathe in the atmosphere which bests suits 
them, when they breathe in the atmosphere of holi- 

Our second inference is, that while the life of a 
Christian is a life of progressive virtue, and of vir- 
tue, too, purified from the jealousies and the sor- 
didness of the legal spirit, still to he set on such 
a career, we see how indispensable it is that 
we enter by Christ, as by the alone gate of admis- 
sion through which we can reach the way of such a 
sanctification. How else can we get rid of the 
oidness of the letter, we would ask ? How be de- 
livered from the fears and disquietudes of legality ? 
How were it possible to regard God in any other 
light than one whose very sacredness lAade him the 
enemy of sinners, and so made him hateful to them? 
We are bound over to distrust, and alienation, and 
impracticable distance from God, till the tidings of 
the gospel set us free. There is a leaden and op- 
pressive weight upon our spirits, under which there 
can be no play of free,^ or grateful, or generous 
emotion towards the Father of them, till we hear 
with effect of the peace-speaking blood, and of the 
charm and the power of the great propitiation. 
Faith in Christ is not merely the starting-post of 
our recoticiliation with God ; it is also the starting- 
post of that new obedience which, unchilled by jea- 
lousy, and untainted by dread or by selfishness, is 
the alone obedience that is at all acceptable. The 
heart cannot go freely out to God, while beset with 
terror, while combined with the thoughts of a yet 
unsettled controversy, while in full view of its own 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


sinfulness, and still in the dark about the way in 
which a Being of unspotted purity and inflexible 
justice, can find out a right channel of conveyance 
for the dispensation of his mercy — ^how he can 
be just, while the justifier of the ungodly. It is 
the cross of Christ that resolves all these painful 
ambiguities. It is this which dissipates all these 
apprehensions. It is this which maintains, in sanc« 
tity unviolated, the whole aspect and character of 
the Godhead; while there beameth forth from it 
the kindest expression of welcome even on the 
chief of sinners. Let that expression be but seen 
and understood, and then will that be to us a 
matter of experience which we have tried, and 
tried so feebly, to set forth as a matter of de- 
monstration. Our bonds will be loosed. A 
thing of hopeless drudgery, will be turned into a 
thing of heart-felt delight. The breath of a new 
spirit will animate our doings; and we will per- 
sonally, and by actual feeling, ascertain the differ- 
ence that there is between the service of a Lawgiver 
pursuing us with exactions that we cannot reach, 
and the service of a Friend, who has already charmed 
us both into confidence and gratitude, and is cheer- 
ing us on, through the manifold infirmities of our 
nature, to the resemblance of himself in all that is 
kind, and upright, and heavenly, and holy. It is 
only, we repeat it, through the knowledge of Christ 
and of him crucified, that we can effect this tran- 
sition from the one style of obedience to the other 
style of obedience. It is only thus that we be- 
come dead unto the law, and alive unto God. It 

is only thus that we can serve him witVv a\\ t\vQ 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


energies of # p ?j}aan«ipat^d hoa^t, now set at large 
from that cb^)on4€P«y 9ffki dtudn^as wliiob foismexlj 
congealed it. ^* I will ruq lh« w^ay of |hy com- 
mandmenta," aay» the Pfealmi^tt *^ when thoo baat 
enlarged my heart." Make rpoi9 in it for the doc- 
trine of the cross, and this wiU enlarge it. And, 
therefore, to ainners do we declare, ibat Chriat is set 
forth as a propitiation;, and all ^ho believe in him 
shall have the bene6t; and to believers dii W€( declare, 
that God hath called them not to unek^nne^s^ but 
to holiness; that, naming the^ na^me of Christy their 
distinct business is to dei^irt frpm all iniquily, and 
to do the commandments, npt becauae they can pur- 
chase admission to heaven by the doing of them, 
hut because heaven is purchased fqt th^m already : 
and to be educated for heaven, they mnat learn to 
do what is right-— not that they can earn a title upon 
God, but because God has been graciously pleased to 
confer this title upon them; and now it is their 
part to do what is well-pleasing in his sight-r-w^k-' 
ing worthy of the Lord unto, all plea^n^r<*beijag 
fruitful in every good work-*— and giving tj^nks 
V^nto the Father, who hath, made them meet, to be 
partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light. 

T. C. 

St. Andrews, Mai/, 1826. 

iy Google 


Of Walidng wM G4)d. 


I. Walking with God described, 50 

II. Reasons for this holy Practice, 53 

III. The Univergftl OUsisfitions to it» . . 56 

Of beginttiKg the Dat^ with God. 

I. How to aWake with God, by pious Meditation and 

Thanksgiving, 58 

II. By renewed Faith tod Repentance, Setf-ezaminaton and 

Prayer, 62 

IIL Directions concerning Prayer, &Ci . .67 

IV. Signs of Worldly-mindedness in holy Duties, and Re- 
medies against it, . 68 


Directions Jbr Walking with God in the Progress of tfe 

I. General Directions, . 75 

II. Special Duties of Superiors and Inferiors, 77 
IIL Of Bodily Refrashment and Recreations, . .80 

(1.) Rules concerning Eating and Drinking, ib, 

(2.) Rules concerning Recreations, . . .81 

Digitized by V:iOOQlC 


Of Religious Fasting. 

I. The Nature of, and Reasons for, religious Fasts, 83 

II. Special Directions concerning them, . .89 
Helps to Self-examination, 92 

(1.) From God's Holy Law, ib, 

(2.) From the Gospel of Christ, .... 108 

(3.) Of llumiliationand Self-judgingfor Sin, . .111 

(4.) Directions for obtfuning Furdon of Sin, and Power 

over it, 118 

(5.) The benefits of religious Fasting, &c. . .124 

Of the Lord's Day^ or Christian Sabbath. 

(1.) The Divine Institution of the Lord's Day, . . 127 
(2.) Directions for the Religious Observance of it, . .128 
(3.) The Nature and Design of Baptism and the Lord's 

Supper, 130 

Directions relating thereunto, . . . • .131 
(4.) Motives to keep holy the Lord's Day, . . .136 


Directions how to End the Day with God, . .137 
Rules concerning Sleep, 138 

Of Walking with God alone. 

I. Rules concerning Solitude, 140 

II. Of Reading the Word of God, and other good Books, 142 
'T. Of Meditation, * . 147 

.) Directions concerning it, ib. 

) The Necessity and Use of It, .... 154 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


Of keeping Company, 


I. Rules concerning' Company in general, .155 

II. Cautions and Directions as to evil Company, . 163 

III. Directions with respect to good Company, or Chris, 
tian Fellowship, 166 


The Christians Duty in Prosperity. 

. I. Rules for our religious Conduct in Prosperity, . \12 

(1.) In shunning those Sins to which we are most prone 
in Prosperity, ........ i6. 

(2.) In attending to those Duties which Prosperity espe- 
cially caUeth for, . 173 

II. Professed Praise and Thanksgiving to God, . ib. 
(1.) and (2.) How and for what. Praise and Thanksgiving 

is to be offered, 174 

(a) TheEvilof Unthankfulness, 175 

(4.) Motives to the Duty of Thankfulness, 177 

(5.) Impediments to Thankfulness, . . .178 

(6.) Helps to Thankfulness, .179 

(7.) Signs to know when God giveth good things in Love, 183 

III. Real Proofs of Gratitude, by using it to his Glory, . 184 


Directions for Walking toith God in Adversity. 

(1.) Rules concerning light Crosses, . .187 

(2.) Directions how to bear all Afflictions well, .188 

1st, Remedies against sinful Anger, .... ib. 

2d, The Cure of Woridly Grief, 192 

(Si) The Nature of Christian Patience, s6. 

(4.) Motives to it, 193 

(5.) Means to gain Christian Patience, .195 

(6.) Of bearing Afflictions thankfully and fruitfully, . . 207 

Digitized by LjOOQIC 



Of Uprightness. 


I. The Necessity of Uprigb^ess in Religion, . : 209 

II. The Description of H» 210 

IIL Rules by which to judge of our Uprightness, . 215 

IV. Particular Marks of Uprightness and Hypocrisy, . 217 

V. Dissuasives from Hypocrisy, and Motives to Uprightness, 231 

VI. Means to subdue Hypocrisy and promote Uprightness, 237 


Cfflat^ftd Carey and Freedom from an^ioM Cure. 

I. The Description of lawful Care, .... 244 

II. Signs Qf immoderate Care, 247 

HI. TheDutyofqui«tTnistinQod> * • . . 248 

IV. Reasons against anxious Care, and for cheerful Tnist in 
God, . 250 

V. Means to attain quieting Confidence in God> . . 256 

Of the Peace if God. 

I. The Nature and Excellency of it,. .... 257 

II. Farther Excellencies and Advantages of the Peace of 

God, . . 267 

Cfthe Impediments qf Peace. 

I. False Hopes and false Fears described, . . . 269 

II. The Causes of Presumption or &ls« Peafce, . . 271 

III. Sevf^ral Grounds of false P«ftce discovered and removed. 273 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 

CONTENTS. xxxiii 


Concerning faUe Fears. 

I. Of needful holy Fear, 298 

II. The Springs and Cure of Causeless Fears, . 293 
( 1 . ) Of those which arise from natural Distempers, - . ib. 
(2.) From the Greatness of Sin, .... 296 

III. Of Fears concerning not being elected, . . . 307 

IV. Of Fears concerning the Sin against the Holy Ghost, 310 

V. Of Fears arising from an accusing Conscience, . 314 

VI. Of Fears from late Repentance, .... 318 

VII. Feiars of misusing the Means of Grace, 323 

VIII. Of Fears arishig from Doubts of God's Lore, . . 325 

(1.) Because of AfflicHon, ib. 

(2.) From want of Affliction, 327 

(3L) From inward Horrors and Distresses, 328 

(4.) From the Greatness of Afflictions, . .331 

(5.) Because Prayeps are not -answered^ . 336 

(&) From the Want and Weajmess of Faith, . . . 338 

IX. Reasons why Christians think they have no Faith, con- 
sidered, . , . 340 

(1.) In what true Faith Qonsbt^ . . . . . 343 
(2.) The Difference between Faith «n4 Assurance, . 344 
(3.) The Nature and Properties of Saving FaUh, . . . 349 
(i.) True Faith discerned \iy lt« Mect^ . . . 358r 

X. Fears concerning the Truth of Sanctification, . . 360 
(1.) Because not deeply humUed, .... ib, 
(2.) From the Intrusion of evil and blasphemous Thoughts, 366 
j(3.) From the Prevalence of some gross Sin, . . . 375 
(4.) From Want of affectionate Sofrow for Sin, . 378 
(5.) From Defects in Spiritual Duties, .... 380 
(6.) From Deadness of Affection after Duties, . 382 
(7.) From the greater Improvement of others in Piety and 

Holiness, .... ... 383 

(8.) From remaining Hardness of Heart, . 385 

XL Of Fears of Apostacy, 387 

(1.) Who may apostatise^ t6. 

(2.) Who shall persevere, . ... . , 388 

(3.) How fiur Christiana may decKne in Grace, . 389 

Digitized by V:iOOQlC 


(4.) The DUference between the Falls of the Sincere and 

the Insineere, SOi 

(5.) Why the Faithful shall not finaUy apoatatiae, 396 

XII. Sundry Doubts remored, in particular^ about fiilling 
from Grace, 401 

(1.) Fears of being Hypocrites Qnly» t6. 

(2.) Because of the Decay of Giaoe and Comfort, . . 402 
(a) Because of the Apostacy of others, . 406 

(4w) From not being able to endure Persecution, . . 407 
(5.) From the DeceitfulnessoftheHeart, . 409 

(6.) From sensible Weakness and Despondencies, ib, 

(7.) From not performing the Condition of the Promises, 410 
. (8.) From the want of such Grace as God hath promised 
to his People^ • . .... 414 

(9.) From the Power and Number of Temptations, . 418 

XIII. The Christian's Ground of Hope against all Fears, 420 

Means to attain the Peace of God. 

I. Errors in misjudgmg of a Person's State removed, 423 

II. Rules for a right Judgment of ourselves, . 424 

III. Directions for the troubled Conscience in application 

to Ministers and others, 426 

IV. Means to get and preserve true Peace, .431 

d by Google 



It is now above thirty years ago since I first per- 
used the ensuing Treatise. . And although until 
this present occasion I never read it since; yet the 
impression it left upon me in the days of my youth, 
have, to say no more, continued a grateful remem- 
brance of it upon my mind. Being, therefore, de- 
sired to give some testimony unto its worth and 
usefulness, 1 esteem myself obliged so to do, by the 
benefit I myself formerly received by it. But con- 
sidering the great distance of time since I read it, 
and hoping perhaps that there might bC} since that 
time, some -little improvements of judgment about 
spiritual things in my own mind; 1 durst not express 
my thoughts concerning it, until I had given it 
another perusal; which I have now done. I shall 
only acquaint the Reader, that I am so far from 
subducting my iaccount, or making an -abatement in 
my esteem thereof^ that my respect unto it, and 
valuation of it is greatly increased; wherein also 
I do rejoice, for reasons not here to be mentioned* 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 



For although, perhaps, some few things might be 
expressed in different words or order, yet there is 
generally that soundness and gravity in the whole 
doctrine of the book, that weight and wisdom in the 
directions given in it for practice, that judgment in 
the resolution of doubts and objections, that breath- 
ing of a spirit of holiness, zeal, humility, and the 
fear of the Lord, in the whole; that- 1 judge and am 
satisfied therein, that it will be found of singular use 
to all such as in sincerity desire a compliance with 
his design ; namely, such a walking with God here, 
that he may come to the enjoyment of Him here- 
after. I know, that in the days wherein we live, 
there tire other notions esteemed higher or more 
raised, and thofse otherwise expressed with more ele- 
gancy of words, and pressed with more appearing 
strenuous ratiocinations than those contained in this 
book, with which the generality of professora seem 
to be more: taken and satisfied. But for my part, 
I must 6ay9 that I do find in this, and some other 
practiotl discoursea of the worthy ministers of the 
past age, that authority and powerful evidence of 
truthy arising from a plain transferring of the sacred 
sense of the scripture in words and expressions suited 
^ to the experience of gracious^ honest, and humble 
souls, that the most accurate and adorned discourses 
of this age do not attain or rise up to* Such, I - 
say, is this discourse r the wisdom and ability of 
whose Author discover themselves ^om first to last, 
not in expressiog his lnindi:f' with enticiiig wordi of 
Hian's visdotn," but in imdem detductiop of. aUhig. 
usefiil directions from > expr^s iestimoaies of scrip*^ . 
tare, in sueh « way ts/to give tigbliUfito tb«in, with- 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


out intercepting the influence of their authority on 
the minds and consciences of the readers. I shall 
therefore say no more, but that if those into whose 
hands this book shall come, be not either openly or 
secretly enemies to the whole design of it, as being 
'^alienated from the life of God through the ignorance 
that is in them," or be not possessed with prejudices 
against the simplicity of the gospel, and that strict- 
ness of obedience it requireth, they will find that 
guidance, direction, and spiritual advantage, by 
which their faith, love, and obedience, may be in- 
creased and improved; which will issue in the praise 
of God's grace, that ought to be the end of all our 
writing and reading in this world. 

Feb. 24rfA, 1673-4. 

d by Google 

d by Google 



I TAKE it for some dishonour of our age, that such 
a book as this should need any man's recommenda- 
tion to procure its entertainment, having been so 
long known and so greatly approved by the most 
judicious and religious ministers and people, as it 
hath been ; even to be to practical Christians, the 
one instead of many, for the ordering of their daily 
course of life, and securing their salvation and well- 
grounded peace. And though I know that there 
are some few words, especially about perseverance, 
of which all good Christians are not fully of one 
mind, (and I never undertake to justify every word, 
in my own books, or any others, while we all 
confess that we are not absolutely infallible;) yet I 
must say, without disparagement to any man's la- 
bours, that I remember not any book which is 
written to be the daily companion of Christians, to 
guide them in the practice of a holy life, which I 
perfer before this: I am sure, none of my own. 
For 80 sound is the doctrine of this book, and so 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


prudent and spiritual, apt and savoury the directions, 
and all so fully suited to our ordinary cases and con- 
ditions, that I heartily wish no family might be 
without it; and many a volume, good and useful, 
are now in religious people's haods, which I had 
rather were all unknown than this. And I think it 
of more service to the souls of men, to call men to 
the notice and use of such a treasure, and to bring 
such old and excellent writings out of oblivion and 
the dust, than to encourage very many who over- 
value their own, and to promote the multiplication of 
things common and undigested, to the burying of 
more excellent treatises in the heap. 

Reader, If thou wilt m^ka this book, after the 
sacred scripture, thy daily counsellor, and iiKUiitor,^ 
and comforteir, I am^ assured ^e experienqe of thy 
own great advantagf^, and incirease of wisdom^ hoJU- 
ness, and peace^ will commc^nd i^ to thee i^ofie.^^. 
tually than my words cau dp. 

Read, love, and practise tbat which U bei« taughl. 
thee, oQd doubt not of thy everlasting bAppi9€>«»«:; /> 

Jan. im^ 1673^4- . 

d by Google 


The searching out of man's true happiness hath 
exercised the wits and pens of many phi)os<^ers 
and dii^ines with a different success* 

1. Some, by a mistake of tlie end, have erred 
about the means. All their enterprises have ended 
in vanity and vexation, whilst they have caught at 
the shadow of fruit in a hedge of thorns, and have 
neglected the tree itself, whence the fruit might 
have been gathered with more certainty and lesa 
trouble. Man's natural corruption has so darkened 
his understanding, that in vain have the wisest men 
sought the happiness, which, without the help of 
Ood's word and Spirit, they could never find. And 
his spiritual appetite and taste is so distempered, that 
he can judge of the chief good no better than a sici^ 
man can do of the best of meats. 

2. Others, *^ having the eyes of their under- 
standing enlightened, and their senses exercised to. 
discern both good and evil^'^ have concluded, that 
man's true happiness consists m the soul's enjoy- 
ment of God by a holy conformity, and sweet com- 
munion with him, through Christ Jesus. For what 

d by Google 


else is true happiness than the enjoyment of the 
chief good ? And that God is the chief good, ap- 
pears in this, that all the properties which exalt 
goodness to the highest perfection, are in God only. 
For he is the most pure, perfect, universal, primary, 
unchangeable communicative, desirable, and delight- 
ful good ; the efficient, pattern, and utmost end of 
all good ; without whom there is neither natural, 
moral, nor spiritual good in any creature. Our 
conformity to him, the apostle Peter expresseth, 
when he saith, that the saints are made ^' partakers 
of the divine nature;" that is, ^^ they are renewed in 
the spirit of their mind, and have put on the new 
man, which after God is created in righteousness 
and true holiness." So that they have, 1. A new 
light in their understanding, that they know God, 
not only as Creator, but as Redeemer also of the 
world; and whilst they *^ behold, as in a mirror, the 
glory of the Lord, with open face, they are changed 
into the same image, from glory to glory, as by the 
Spirit of the Lord." This knowledge is begun in 
this life, in the knowledge of faith, and shall be per- 
fected in the life to come, in the knowledge of sense. 
This is '* in a glass ;" that shall be " face to face." 
2. They have a new life in their will and affections; 
that is, they have dispositions and inclinations in 
their hearts, conformable to the directions of God'^ 
holy word. Thi& the apostle Paul intended, when 
he said to the Romans, that they had ^^ obeyed, from 
the heart, the form of doctrine, wher&unto they were , 
delivered ;" that is, <he world is as a mould where- 
into being cast, they are fashioned according to it« 
Hence it is, that the saints are said to be ^^ seale4 

Digitized byC:iOOQlC 


tvith the Holy Spirit," because as the seal leaves its 
print upon the Wax, so the Spirit makes holy im- 
pressions in the soul: this is called the writing of 
the law in our hearts; in allusion whereunto the 
apostle compares the hearts of believers to tables ; 
and their aiFections or conversation to an epistle, 
which is said to be read and understood of all men, 
when they walk as examples of the rule. 

8. Hence it is, that godliness hath a self-sufficiency 
joined with it. Because the Christian is now in com- 
munion with God, whose face, when ii man beholds 
in righteousness, he shall be satisfied with his image, 
Psalm xvii. 1 5. Hence comes that peace of con- 
science, joy unspeakable and glorious, and that holy 
triumph and exultation of spirit, which you may ob- 
serve in the apostle Paul and others. 

Having briefly showed what this coi^ormity and 
communion with God is, I will add one or two more 
words to make it manifest, that only those are truly 
happy who are in this estate. For, 1. Man's ut- 
most end is, that it may be perfectly well with him, 
which he^can never attain to without communion 
with God, who is the Father of spirits, and the best 
of goods. Other things are desired as subordinate 
to this. The body is for the soul, as the matter 
for its form, or the instrument for its agent. Human 
wisdom and moral virtues are desired, not for them- 
selves, but for the fruit that is expected by them, as 
glory, pleasure, and riches. Worldly and bodily 
pleasures, excessively desired, are as drink in a fever, 
or dropsy; better it is to be without the malady than 
to enjoy that remedy. Riches are desired not for 
themselves, but for the conveniences of life* Life i& 

Digitized by C:iOOQ IC 


not ao mudi desired fiof itrclf as for the ei^oyment 
€(f happineMy whicb^ when t man hath s6ught iathe 
labyrinth of eaithly vanities, after much vexaikm 
and disqafvetnde of spirit^ he must coaelude^ that it 
is only in that truest and chief good^ which is the 
fountain whence true delight first flowelh} and the 
object wherein finally it restetb. 

2. That is man^s ha{^ioe8a^ ki the possession and 
enjoyment whereof^ his l^airt rest^h best satisfied. 
So far a man is from. true happiness, as he is from 
full contentment in that which be esijeys. The bee 
would not sit upon so- many flowers, if she could 
gather honey enough ^&om any one, neither would 
Solomon have tried so many conclunons, if the en- 
joyment of any creature could have made him happy. 
Would you know tlie cause why so many, like 
Ixion, mak^oye to shadows and leave the substance, 
or, that I may speak in. a better phrasey ^^ forsake 
the fountain of living. water, and dig to themselvee 
broken cisterns, that will hold no water?? Briefly, it 
is because man, who in his pride would have seen as 
much as Gody ia now become so blind that he seeth 
not himselR For if men knew either the» disposi-*^ 
tion of their souls by creation^ or the indispositioa 
of their souls by corruption^ they would easily escape 
this delusion* < The soul is a spiritual substanee, 
whose original ia from Gjod^ and therefore its rest 
must be in God^ as the rivers run into the sea, and- 
as every body rests in his centre. The noblest 
faculties are abased, not improved;, abused, not em* 
ployed^ vexed, not satisfied; when they are sub* 
jectedto these. inferior objects,, as when Nebuchad- 
uezsarfed amoug heasta;^ or, as when^ ^ servants rode. 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


on.borsebadc, and masters walked like servants on 
the ground." 

. Consider the soul as it b in this state of corrup- 
tion, nothing can now content it» but that which can 
cure it. The soul is fuU of aioy which is the most 
painful sickness; hence the. prophet compares wicked 
men to the raging waves of the sea, that is never at 
rest, whose waters oast up mire and dirt. What 
will you do to oomfort him that is heart-sick? Bring 
him the choiee&t delicates, he cannot relish them ; 
compass him about with meriy company and music, 
it is tedious and tro«blesome to him; bring him to a 
belter chamber, lay him: on an. easier bed; all will 
not satisfy him. But bring the pbysimn to him, 
then he. eoneeiyes hopes ; let the physician cure hira 
of hi&<disteniper, and then he wiU eat coarser meat, 
with a better stomach, and sleep on a harder bed, in 
a worse chamber, with a more cheerful and contented 

J\3fi^ so it is with a guiky conscience, though he 
is not always sensible of it. What comfort can his 
friends give him, when God is bis enemy ? What 
detight can he take in his stately buitdings,. or fre- 
quent visits,, who may expect, even thb night, to 
have his soul required of him, and be. made a com-^ 
panion with devils? What is a golden . cliain about 
a leprous person, or tlie richest appai^i upon a dead 
carcase? Or* what comfort will a costly banquet 
yield to a condemned: malefactor, who is just going 
to execution? Surely no more than Adam found, 
when he had sinned io the garden, or than Haman 
had, when Ahasuerus frowned on lijin in the ban- 
quet. On the od)er hand, l^t a mi^n be aV ig^^^e 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 



with God, and, in a sweet communion, enjoy the in- 
fluence of heavenly graces and comforts in his soul, 
he can rejoice in tribulation, sing in prison, solace 
himself in death, and comfort his heart against prin- 
cipalities and powers, tribulation and anguish, height 
and depth, things present and things to come. This 
true happiness, which all men desire, but most miss 
it, by mistaking the way conducing to it, is the sub- 
ject-matter of this book. Here you may learn the 
right way of peace. How a man may do every day's 
duty conscientiously, and bear every day's cross com- 
fortably — receive it thankfully, and read it carefully. 
But this course is too strict. In bodily distem- 
pers we account that physician the wisest and best, 
who regards more the health than the will of his 
patient. The carpenter squares his work by the 
rule, not the rule by his work. O, miserable man, 
what an antipathy against truth i^ in thy cursed cor- 
rupted nature, which had rather perish by false prin- 
ciples, than be saved by receiving and obeying the 
truth ! But secondly, as it is strict, so it is necessary, 
and in that case, strictness doth not blunt, but 
sharpen the edge of industry to duty. Therefore, 
saith our Saviour, " strive to enter in at the strait 
gate;" that is, therefore strive to enter because the 
gate is strait. Bradford well compared the way of 
religion to a narrow bridge, over a large and deep 
river; from which, the least turning awry is danger- 
ous. We see into what a gulf of misery Adam 
plunged himself and his posterity, by stepping aside 
from God's way. Therefore forget not these rules 
of the apostle: " Walk circumspectly, and make 
straight paths to your feet, lest that which is lame, 
be turned out of the way." 

Digitized byC:iOOQlC 


But many of God's cbildren attain not to this 
strictness, yet are saved. 

It is true; though all God's cbildren travel to one 
countiy, yet not with equal speed; they all shoot at 
one mark, yet not with the same dexterity. Some 
diiFerence there is in the outward action, none in 
their inward intention; some inequalities there are in 
the event, none in the -affection : In degrees there is 
some disparity, none in truth and uprightness. All 
that are regenerate are alike strict in these five 
things, at least. 1. They have but one path or 
way wherein they all walk. 2. They have but one 
rule to guide them in that way which they all 
follow. 3. All their eyes are upon this rule, so as 
they are not willingly ignorant of any truth. Nor 
do they suppress, or detain any known truth in un- 
righteousness, but they stand in the ways, and ask 
for the old path, which is the good way. 4. They 
all desire and endeavour to obey every truth, not 
only to walk in all the commandipents of God with- 
out reproof, before roen^ but alsp in all things to 
live honestly and uprightly before God. 5. If 
they fall by temptation, (as a member may, by acci- 
dent, be disjointed,) yet they are in pain till they be 
set right again; if they stumble, through infirmity, 
as sheep may slip into a puddle, yet they will not 
lie down, and wallow in the mire which is the pro- 
perty of swine : If they are sometimes drawn aside 
by violent temptations, or step aside by mistake, yet 
they will not walk on in the counsel of the wicked, 
nor will any way of wickedness, (that is, a constant, 
or daily course in any one sin) be found in them ; 
they are so far from perverting the right ways of 

Digitized byC:iOOQlC 


God, (that is, speiddDg evil of what i» good«) that 
they will justify God in condemning themselves, and 
subscribe to the righteoosuess of bis word, praying 
that their ways might be directed to keep bis statutes. 

To concliuie^ laying aside aU cavils, beg of God a 
teachable dispo»tion, and raake the best profit of the 
labours of this faithful servant of Jesus Christ. For 
the matter oi this book, use it as thy daily counsel- 
lor; learn to write by this copy. I mean, stir up 
tlie gifts of God that are in thee, to become more 
profitable to others, both in presence, by discourse, 
and in absence, l^ writing. 

The Christian and mtdligent Reader shall find 
in this, som«< things new, other things expressed in 
a new manner, all digested in such a method, with 
such bren^ and perspicuity, ^s was neeessary to 
make the book a vade mecwn^ or pocket companion, 
es^cially profitable to the poor ai>d illiterate. 

I will here stop, wishing thee, candid and serious 
Reader, to eonsidiM^ that an account must be given 
of what the«i readest, as well as of what thou hear- 
est, and therefore, to join prayer with thy reading, 
that spiritual wisdom and strength may be increased 
in thee, for the practice of what thou learnest. So, 
I commend the book to thy reading ; and thee and 
it to God's blessings 

Thine in the Lord Jesus, 


d by Google- 



Of Walking with God in general. 


Beloved friend, observing your forwardness and 
zeal in seeking to know how you might please God, 
and save your soul, I thought it would be acceptable 
and profitable to you, if I should, by the infallible 
rule of God's word, direct you how, with most cer- 
tainty, speed, and ease, you might attain to this 
your holy aim. Wherefore, considering that most 
of God's children make their lives unprofitable and 
nncomfortable, by troubling themselves about " many 
things," and that too much in things less needful; by 
caring and fearing what shall befal them and theirs 
hereafter, with respect to this present life, — that you 
may obtain " that one thing needful," and contain 
yourself within your own line and calling, I exhort 
you heedfully to apply yourself to do each presefit 
daj/s work xvith Christian cheerjtdness, and to bear 
each present daj/s evii with Christian patience. 

C ^ 31 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


!• Walking mth God described. 

The best and surest way to please God, and gain 
a cheerful quiet heart in the way to heaven, is, to 
walk with God in uprightness, (through faith in 
Jesus Christ,) "being careful in nothing: but in 
every thing, by prayer and supplication, with thanks- 
giving, to make your request known unto God:" 
which if you do, the peace of God, which passeth 
all understanding, shall so establish your heart and 
mind, in and through Christ Jesus, that you may 
live in a heaven upon earth, and may be joyous and 
comfortable in all states and conditions of life what- 

That you should walk with God in uprightness, 
is commended to you in the cloud of examples, of 
Enoch, Noah, Job, David, Zacharias and Elizabeth:; 
with many others, renowned in scripture; and is 
commanded to Abraham, and, in him, to all the 
faithful, — " I am the Almighty God; walk before 
me, and be thou perfect." 

To live by faith, (which is, to frame your heart 
and life according to the will of God revealed in 
his word,) and to walk with God, are all one. 
Enoch was said to have walked with God; — what was 
this else, but to believe and rest on God, whereby 
he pleased him. For according to what we live, 
according to that we are said to walk. The moral 
actions of man's life are fitly resembled by the 
metaphor of walking, which is a moving from one 
place to another. No man, while he liveth here, 
is at home in the place where he shall be. There 
are two contrary homes, to which every man is al- 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


ways going— either to heaven, or to hell. Every 
action of man is one pace or step whereby he goeth 
to the one place or the other. The holiness or 
wickedness of the action is the several way to the 
place of happiness, or place of torment. So that 
God's own children, while they live in this world 
as pilgrims and strangers, are but in the way, not in 
the country which they seek, which is heavenly. 

This life of faith and holiness, what is it, but a 
going out of a man's self, and a continual returning 
to God, by Christ Jesus, from the way of sin and 
death, and a constant perseverance in all those acts 
of obedience, which God hath ordained to be the 
way for all his children to walk in, unto eternal 

A godly life is said to be a walking with God in 
respect of four things that concur thereunto. 

1. Whereas by sin we naturally are departed 
from God, and gone away from his ways which he 
hath appointed for us, we, by the new and living 
way of Christ's death and resurrection, and by the 
new and living work of Christ's Spirit, are brought 
near to God; and are set in the ways of God, by 
repentance from dead works, and by faith towards 
God in Christ Jesus; which are the first principles 
of true religion, and the. first steps to this great 
duty of walking with God. Now, to believe and to 
continue in the faith, is, to walk in Christ; there- 
fore to walk with God. 

2. The revealed will of God is called God's 
way, because in it God doth as it were display the 
secrets of his holy Majesty, to show his people 
their way to him, and so bring them nigh unto * 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


himself; as the inspired Psalmist speaks: ^^ Right- 
eousness shall go before him, and shall set us in 
the way of his steps." Now this way of righteous- 
ness, revealed in the sacred scriptures, is the rule of 
a godly life: he who walketh according to God's 
law, is said to walk before God, (compare 1 Kings 
viii. 25. with 2 Chron. vi. 16.) So that he who 
walketh according to God's will in the various 
changes and conditions of life, keeping himself to 
this rule, walketh with God. 

3. He that liveth a godly life, walketh after the 
Spirit, not after the flesh. He is ^' led by the 
Spirit of God," having him for his guide; where- 
fore in this respect also he is said to walk with God. 

4. He that walketh with God, sees, by the eye 
of faith, God present with him in all his actions; 
seriously thinking of him upon all occasions, remem- 
bering him in his ways, setting the Lord always 
before him, as David did; seeing him that is in- 
visible, as Moses did; doing all things, as St. Paul 
did, as of God, in the sight of God. Now he who 
so walketh that he always observeth God's presence^ 
and keepeth him still in his view in the course of 
his life, not only with a general and habitual, but, 
as much as he can, with an actual intention to please 
and glorify God, this man may be said to walk with 

Thus you may know when you walk with God : 
( 1 .) When you daily go on to repent of sins past, 
believe in Jesus Christ for pardon, and believe his 
word for direction. (2.) When you walk not ac- 
cording to the will of man, but of God. (3.) When 
you walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit* 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


(4.) When you set God before you, and walk as in 
his sight, then you walk with, before, after, and 
according to God: for air these are understood in 
one sense. 

That you may walk with God, consider these 
arguments farther to convince and induce you. 

II. Reasons why Christiafis should walk with God. 

1. You are commanded to walk as Christ walked ; 
and it concerns you so to do, if you would approve 
yourself to be a member. of his body: for it is mon- 
strous, nay, impossible, that the head should go one 
way, and the body another. Now, our Saviour 
himself observed all these methods of walking with 
God, justifying faith and repentance only excepted, 
because he was without sin. 

2. It is all which the Lord requireth of you, for 
all his love and goodness shown unto, you, in creat- 
ing, preserving, redeeming, and saving you. For 
what doth the Lord require of you, but to " do 
justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with 
your God." 

3. If you walk with God, and keep close to him, 
you will be sure to go in the right way, in that 
good old way, which is called the way of holiness; 
in a most straight, most sure, and (to a spiritual 
man) most pleasant way, the paths of which are 
peace; the very happiness and rest of the soul. God 
teacheth his children to choose this way. And if 
they happen to err, or to doubt of their way, they 
shall hear the voice of God's Spirit behind them, 
saying, " This is the way, walk in it.** 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 



4. If you walk with God, you shall walk safely ; 
you will not need to fear, though ten thousand set 
themselves against you; for his presence is with you, 
and for you. His holy angels encamp about you ; 
and while you walk in his ways, they are charged 
to support you, lest you should receive any harm. 

5. When you walk with God (though you be 
alone, separate from all other society) you still walk 
with the best company, even such whereof there is 
most need, and best use. While God and you 
walk together, you have an advantage above all that 
walk not with him; for you have a blessed oppor- 
tunity of a holy acquaintance with God, which is 
expressed. You have opportunity to speak unto 
him, praying with assurance of a gracious hearing. 
Abraham and his faithful servant made use of their 
walking with God for these purposes. Is it not a 
special favour that the most high God, whose throne 
is in heaven, should condescend to walk on earth 
with sinful man? nay, rather to call up man from 
earth to heaven, to walk with him? It would be 
therefore shameful ingratitude not to accept this 
offer, and not to obey this charge. 

6. < To set the Lord always in your sight, is an 
excellent preservative and restraint from sin. With 
this shield Joseph did repel and quench the fiery 
darts of the temptations of his designing mistress. 
For who is so foolish, and shameless, as wilfully to 
transgress the just laws of a father, king, and judge, 
knowing that he is present, and observes him with 
detestation if he so do? 

7. To set the Lord always before you, is an ex- 
cellent remedy against spiritual sloth and negligence 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


in duties, and it is a sharp spur to quicken, and 
make you diligent and abundant in the work of the 
Lord. What servant can be slothful and careless 
in his master's sight? And what master will keep 
a servant that will not observe him, and do his 
commands, while he himself looketh on. 

8. Walking with God in manner aforesaid, doth 
exceedingly please God. It also pleases God's 
holy angels. It pleases God's faithful ministers, 
and doth please and strengthen all the good people 
of God, with whom you do converse. It is to 
" walk worthy of God in all well pleasing." 

9. Thus walking with God, you shall be assured 
of God's mercy and gracious favour. He keepeth 
.<< covenant and mercy with all his servants, that 
.walk before him with all their heart." .When you 

do thus walk in the light, you have a gracious fel- 
lowship with God, and '^ the blood of Jesus Christ 
deanseth you from all sin." There is no condem- 
nation to you who thus walk. Your flesh, when 
you die, shall rest in hope. For to them that set 
God before them, he doth show the path of life, 
which will bring them into his glorious presence, 
where are fulness of joys, and pleasures for evermore. 

Any one of these motives, seriously thought 
upon by a humble Christian, is enough to persuade 
him to this holy walking with God. 

Notwithstanding, it is sad to consider, how few 
there be who walk thus. For most men seek not 
after God, God is not in all their thoughts ; they 
walk iti the vanity of their minds, after, their own 
lusts ; the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eye, and 
the pride of life; walking according to the course 

Digitized by CjOOQIC 


of this world, according to the will of Satan, the 
prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now 
worketh in the children of disobedience; who refuse 
to return, or to call themselves into question concern- 
ing their ways, though God doth wait and hearken 
for it, no, not so much as to say, What have we 
done? but every one runneth to his course, as the 
horse rusheth into the battle. 

Now, concerning all that walk thus contrary to 
God, God hath said, that he will set his face against 
them, and punish them seven times; even with many 
and sore plagues. And if yet they will walk con- 
trary to him, he will walk contrary to them in fury, 
and punish them seven times more for their sins. 
And if yet they will walk in impenitency, notwith- 
standing God's offer of merpy to them in Christ, 
St. Paul could not speak of such with dry eyes, but 
peremptorily pronounceth that their end is destruc- 

Weigh well, therefore, these premiseS; compare 
the way, wherein you walk with God, with all other 
ways; compare this company with all other company, 
and the issues and end of this way with the issues 
and end of all o.tber ways, and the proper choice of 
your walk will easily and quickly be made. 

Thus much may be said in general of walking 
with God. 

III. Walking with God^ to be Constant and 

The commandment to walk with God is indefinite, 
without limitation, therefore must be understood to 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


be a walking with him in all things, and that in all 
things, and, at all times, in all companies, and in all 
changes, conditions, and estates of your life, what- 
soever. To walk with God in general and at large 
is not sufficient. 

You are not dispensed with for any moment of 
your life; but all the days of your life, and each day 
of your life, and each hour of that day, and each 
minute of that hour; you must pass the time, the 
whole time of your dwelling here in fear; even " all 
the day long," saith Solomon. You must endeavour 
to have a conscience void of oflPence always. You 
must live the rest of your life, not to the lusts of 
men, but to the will of God; taking heed lest at 
any time there be in you an evil heart of unbelief, 
in departing from the living God. 

1. For this end Christ did redeem you from the 
hands of your enemies, that you might serve him in 
holiness and righteousness (which is the same with 
walking with God) all the days of your life without 

2. The end of the instructions of God's word, 
which is the light of your feet in this walking, is, 
that it be bound upon your hesrt continually, to 
lead, keep, and converse with you at all times. 

3. The lusts of your own heart, and your adver- 
sary the devil lie always upon the advantage to hinder 
you in, or divert you from, this godly course: so that 
upon every intermission of your holy care to please 
God, they take their opportunity to surprise you. 

4. You are accountable to God for losing and 

mispending all that precious time wherein you do 

not walk in bis ways. 


Digitized by VjOOQIC 


5. Besides, he that hath much work to do, or 
that is in a long journey, or is running a race for a 
wager, hath no need to lose any time. If you be 
long obstructed in your Christian work and race, by 
sin and sloth, you will hardly recover your loss but 
with much sorrow, with renewed faith, and with 
more than ordinary repentance. 

Wherefore, when you awake in the night, or in 
the morning, and while you are employed in the 
day, and when you betake yourself to sleep at night, 
you must, as David, have thoughts on God, and 
set him always before you. " When I awake, I 
am still with thee," saith he, and in the night he 
remembered God, and his hope and meditation was 
on God's word. And Isaiah (in the person of all 
the faithful) saith, *^ With my soul have I desired 
thee in the night, yea, with my spirit within me will 
I seek thee early." 

Of beginning the Day with God. 

I. Ham to awake with God. 

In the instant of awaking let your heart be lifted 
up to God with a thankful acknowledgment of his 
mercy to you. For it is he that giveth his beloved 
sleep ; who keepeth you both in soul and body while 
vou sleep; who reneweth hiis mercies every morning, 
^or, while you sleep, you are as it were out of 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


actual possession of yourself, and all things else* 
Nqw, it was God that kept you, and all that you 
had, and restored them again, with many new mer- 
cies, when you awaked. 

2. Arise early in the morning (if you be not 
necessarily hindered) following the example of our 
Saviour Christ, and of the good matron in the Pro- 
verbs. For this will usually much conduce to the 
health of your body, and the prosperity, both of 
your temporal and spiritual state; for hereby you 
will have the day before you, and will gain the best, 
and the fittest times for the exercises of religion, 
and for the works of your calling. 

3. In the time between your awaking and arising, 
if other suitable thoughts offer not themselves, it 
will be useful to think upon some of these:— I must 
awake from the sleep of sin, to righteousness; as 
well as out of bodily sleep, unto labour in my call- 
ing. The night is far spent, the day is at hand, I 
must therefore cast off the works of darkness, and 
put on the armour of Kght. I must walk honestly 
as in the day. I am, by the light of grace and 
knowledge, to arise and walk in it, as well as by 
the light of the sun to walk by it. Think also of 
your awaking out of the sleep of death, and out of 
the grave, at the sound of the last trumpet; even of 
your blessed resurrection unto glory, at the last day. 
It was one of David's sweet thoughts (speaking to 
God) " When I awake, I shall be satisfied with thy 

4. When you arise, and dress yourself, lose not 
that precious time, when your mind is freshest, with 
impertinent and fruitless thoughts, as is the custom 

Digitized by CjOOQ IC 


of too many to do. This is a fit time to think upon 
the cause why you have need of apparel; namelyy 
the fall and sin of your first parents, which from 
them is derived to you. For before their fall, their 
nakedness was their comeliness, and seeing it, they 
were not ashamed. It will likewise be to good pur- 
pose to consider what the wise providence of God 
hath appointed to be the substance of your apparel. 
The rinds of plants, the skins, hair, or wool of brute 
beasts, and the bowels of the silkworm; the very 
excrements and superfluous apparel of unreasonable 
creatures. Which, as it doth magnify the wisdom, 
power, and goodness of God, in choosing, and turn- 
ing such mean thingl^ to such excellent use, so it 
should humble and suppress the pride of man. For 
what man in his senses would be proud of the bndge 
of bis shame, even of that apparel, for which (under 
God) he is beholden even to plants and beasts? 

Now also is a good time to call to mind what 
rules are to be observed, that you may dress your- 
self as becometh one that profcsseth godliness: 
namely, 1. That your apparel, for matter and 
fashion, do suit with your general and special call- 
ing, and with your estate, sex, and age. 

2. That your apparel be consistent with health 
and comeliness. 

3. That you rather go witTi the lowest, than with 
the highest of your state and place. 

4. That the fashion be neither strange, immodest, 
singular, nor ridiculous. 

5. That you be not over curious, or over long, 
taking up too much time in putting it on. 

6. Neither the making nor wearing of your 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


apparel, must savour of pride, lightness, curiosity, 
lasciviousness, prodigality, or base covetousness : 
but it must be such as becometh holiness, wisdom, 
and honesty, and such as is well reported of. 

7. Follow the example of those of your rank and 
means, who are most sober, most frugal, and most 

While you dress yourself, it will be seasonable 
and profitable also, by this occasion, to raise your 
thoughts, and fix them upon that apparel which 
doth clothe and adorn your inward man, which is 
spiritual, and of a divine matter, which never is out 
of fashion, which never weareth out, but is always 
the better for the wearing. Think thus: If I go 
naked without bodily apparel, it will be to the shame 
of my person, and to the hazard of my health and 
life: but how much more will the filthy nakedness 
of my soul appear to the eyes of men, of angels, 
and of God himself, whose pure eyes cannot abide 
filthiness, whereby my soul will be exposed to most 
deadly temptations, and my whole person to God's 
most severe judgments, except I have put on, and 
do keep on me the white linen of Christ's spouse, 
the righteousness of the saints, that is, justification 
by faith in Christ, and sanctification by the Spirit 
of Christ? 

And because every day you will be assaulted 
with the world, the flesh, and the devil, you will do 
well to consider whether you have put on, and do 
improve your coat of mail, that complete armour, 
prescribed Eph. vi. 11 — 18. 

When you use your looking-glass, and by ex*- 
perience find that it serveth to discover, and to 

Digitized byV:iOOQlC 


direct you how to reform whatever is uncomely, and 
out of order in your body, you may hereby remem- 
ber the necessity and admirable use of the glass of 
God's word, and gospel of Christ, both read and 
preached, for the good of your soul. For, this 
being understood and believed, doth not only show 
what is amiss in the soul, and how it may be amended; 
but in some measure will enable you to amend; for, 
it doth not only show you your own face, but the 
very face and glory of God in Christ Jesus, which 
by reflection upon you, will, through the Spirit, 
work on you a more excellent effect than on Moses' 
face in the mount, which yet was so glorious, that 
the people could not endure to behold it. For by 
this glory of God, which by faith you behold in the 
word, you will be *^ changed into the same image, 
from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the 

Concerning these things which I have directed 
to be thought upon, when you arise, and put on 
your apparel in the morning, and those which I 
shall direct when you put off your apparel at night, 
my meaning is not to urge them as necessary, as if 
it were sin to omit any of these particulars, but to 
be used, except better come in place, as most con- 

II. Of beginning the Day witk God^ by renewed 
Faith and Repentance. 

1. When you are thus awake, and are risen 
out of your bed, that you may walk with God the 
remainder of the day, it will be needful that you 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


first renew your peace with God, by faith in Jesus 
Christ; and then endeavour to show your dutiful- 
ness and gratitude to God, by doing those works of 
piety, equity, mercy, and sobriety, which may any 
way concern you that day. For how can two walk 
together, except they be agreed? And how can 
any walk with God, if he be not holy in all his 
conversation? You have as much -cause to beware 
of him, and to obey his voice, and not provoke him 
who goeth before you in the wilderness of this 
world, to guide and bring you to his heavenly king- 
dom, as the Israelites had to beware of him who 
went before them to keep theln in the way, and to 
conduct them unto the earthly Canaan, the place 
which he had promised and prepared for them. It 
was for this, that Joshua told the people, that except 
they would fear the Lord, and serve him in sincerity, 
and put away their strange gods, they 'could not 
serve God; they could not walk with him. For he 
is, saith he, a holy God: he is a jealous God: he 
will not forgive your transgressions, nor your sins. 

2. For this cause (if unavoidable necessity 
hinder not) begin the day with solemn prayer and 
thanksgiving. Before which, that these duties may 
be the better performed, it will be convenient, if 
you have time, that you prepare yourself by medi- 
tation; the matter whereof should be an inquiry 
into your present state, How all things stand between 
God and you? How you have behaved since you 
last prayed and renewed your peace with God? 
What sins you have committed, what graces and 
benefits you want, what fresh favours God hath 
bestowed on you, since last you gave him this tri* 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


bute of thanks; and how much praise and thanks 
you owe to him also for the continuance of former 
blessings? Think also what employments you 
shall have that day, in which you may need his 
special grace and assistance. Consider likewise 
what ground and warrant you have to approach to 
the throne of grace, to ask pardon, and to hope for 
the favour and help of God. Upon these considera* 
tions, you must seriously and faithfully endeavour, 
in the strength of Christ (without whom you can 
do nothing) to reform whatsoever you find to be 
amiss; flying unto, and only relying upon God's 
mercy in Christ; to acknowledge him in all things; 
and that you will now seek grace and help of him,, 
whereby you may walk as in his sight in all well 
pleasing, all that day. 

To assist you therein, do thus : 

1st, Lay a strict charge upon your conscience to 
deal impartially, plainly, and fully, in this examina- 
tion and judging of yourself. 

2d, You should be so well acquainted with the 
substance and meaning of God's holy law, that you 
may be able to carry in your head a catalogue or 
table of the duties required, and vices forbidden, in 
each commandment; whereby you may try your 
obedience past, and may set before you a rule of 
life for time to come. 

3d, Lest the calling to mind the multitude and 
greatness of your sins should make you despair of 
God's favour, you should be so well instructed in 
the Christian faith, and in the principal promises of 
the gospel, that you may be able also quickly to call 
them to mind, for the strengthening of your faith 

Digitized by CjOOQ IC 


and hope in God. The form of sound words in the 
gospel, should be familiar unto you for these pur- 

AH these need not take up much time: you wiU 
find it to be time well redeemed. For, first, by 
such preparation you will keep yourself from thsit 
rude and irreverent thrusting yourself into God'<s 
holy presence, whereof you are warned in the scrip- 

Secondly, When by this means your heart is 
well humbled, softened, and set right towards God, 
so that you can say, you " regard no iniquity" in 
your heart; and when hereby you have called in 
your thoughts from straggling, and have gotten 
composedness of mind, and inward strength of soul, 
(without which the arrow of prayer can never fly 
home to the mark) then you may approach into 
God's special presence with more faith and boldness; 
you shall be more able to utter before him apt con- 
fessions, lawful requests, and due thanksgivings, 
with more understanding, more humbly, more feel- 
ingly, more fervently, and with more assurance of a 
gracious hearing, (all which are requisite in prayer.) 
than you could ever possibly be able to do without 
such preparation. 

Thirdly, This due preparation to prayer not 
only fits you to pray; but is an excellent furtherance 
to a holy life. For it maketh the conscience ten- 
der and watchful, by the daily exercise of the know- 
ledge of the precepts and threatenings of the law, 
and of the precepts and promises of the gospel: and 
it being forced to examine, accuse, judge, and pass 
sentence, and do a kind of execution upon you for 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


your sin; smiting your heart, and wounding itself 
with godly fear, grief, and shame (a work to which 
the conscience is loath to come, till it must needs;) 
wherefore, to prevent all this trouble and smart, it 
will rather give all diligence in other acts which are 
more pleasing; namely, it will direct you in the ways 
of God, check and warn you beforehand, lest you 
should sin; to the end that when you come to 
examine yourself again, it might find matter, not of 
grieving and tormenting, but of rejoicing and com- 
forting your heart, which is the most proper, and 
most pleasing work of a sanctified conscience. He 
that knoweth that he must be at much pains to 
make himself whole and clean, when he is wounded 
and defiled, will take the more heed lest he wound 
and defile himself. 

Fourthly, This due preparation to prayer, by 
examining, judging, and reforming yourself, pre- 
vents God's judging you; for when you " judge 
yourself, you shall not be judged of the Lord," 
saith the apostle. 

3. Being rightly prepared, you must draw near 
into God's special presence, falling low at his foot- 
stool, representing him to your thoughts as one who 
is in himself, and of himself, the only heavenly, 
all-knowing and almighty Majesty, now become 
your loving and merciful Father, through Christ 
his Son your Lord : then you must pour out your 
soul before him in confessing your sins, and in 
making your desires (through the Spirit) known 
unto him in the name of Christ, for yourself and 
others, in all lawful petitions and supplications, 
with thanksgiving; and all this with understanding, 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 

67 . 

with the intention and full bent of the soul, and 
expectation of being heard, in due time and measure, 
and in the best manner. 

III. Farther Directions concerning Prayer, 

To the directions botU for preparation to prayer, 
and concerning prayer itself, take these cautions. 

1. Omit neither the one nor the other, and let 
them be the first work after you are up. But if 
that cannot be, because of some necessary hinder- 
ance, yet perform them so soon as you can, and as 
well as you can: though you can do neither, either 
so soon, or so well as you would, yet omit them not 
altogether. Break through all seeming necessities, 
which will daily come in your way, to hinder and 
thrust out these duties. The devil, knowing that 
nothing doth undermine and overthrow his kingdom 
more than these duly performed ; knowing also that 
the spiritual performance of them is tedious to cor* 
rupt nature, he will thrust upon you seeming 
necessities, so many, and so often, that if you be 
not watchful to gain, and to take time, breaking 
through all such hinderances as are not truly neces- 
sary, you will often, by the circumvention of the 
flesh and of the devil, be brought to an omission of 
preparation, or of prayer, or both. Upon which 
will follow similar temptations, together with a 
proneness to the like neglect, and a greater indis- 
position to the^e duties afterward. 

2. Lay not too great a task upon yourself in 
this preparation to prayer; I mean, so much as will 
take up more time than the works of your calling. 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


and other needful affairs, will permit; but contrive 
and imsband your time so, that every lawful busi- 
ness may have its own time. God hath subordi- 
nated the works of your general and particular 
calling in such a way, that, usually, the one shall 
not obstruct the other for it. If, through taking 
up too much time in preparation to prayer, and in 
prayer, either of them grow necessarily tedious and 
burdensome, Satan will circumvent you by this 
means, causing you, out of a true weariness of too 
much, even before you are aware, to omit them al- 

3. Whereas, when you prepare yourself to pray, 
and when you do pray, it is lawful to think of your 
worldly business, to the end that you might pray 
for direction and for good success therein (for you 
may ask your daily bread;) you must take heed, 
when you think of these things, that your thoughts 
be not worldly through distempers and distractions 
about the same. For these will abate your spiri- 
tuality and fervour in prayer, and will shut the ears 
of God against your prayer. 

IV. Signs of Worldly-mindedness in DevotioUy 
and Remedies against it. 

If you desire to know the signs and remedies of 
distempers and distractions about worldly things in 
your preparation for holy duties; by distempers, I 
mean, inordinate trouble about the means; and by 
distractions, I mean, a vexing trouble about success. 

I. As to the signs of it. You may know that 
'our mhid is distempered with worldliness, even in 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


thinking on lawAil business, when you prepare your- 
self to prayer, and at other seasons, by these marks: 

1. When (except in case of necessity in their 
apparent danger) your worldly afiairs are first in 
your thoughts to be the matter of your meditation. 
For thoughts how to hallow God's name, and how 
his kingdom may come, and how you may do bis 
will, should usually be in your mind, before those 
that concern your daily bread. 

2. When they interpose themselves, interrupt, 
and jostle out those good thoughts whereon you 
were thinking, before you have thought of them 

3. When your thoughts of worldly business are 
with greater intention of mind, than the thoughts 
of things spiritual and heavenly. 

4. When they last longer than such as imme- 
diately concern the glory of God, and the good of 
your soul, or hold you too long upon them. 

5. You may know it by the ends which you 
propose to yourself in your thoughts of worldly 
business; are the ends you propose, only, or chiefly, 
that you may prevent poverty, or that you may have 
wherewith to satisfy your natural desires? If you 
propose not other, and more spiritual ends, your 
thoughts of them at that time, are worldly : but if 
your thoughts of your worldly business, be to the 
end that you may lay them to the rule of God's 
word, that you may not offend him in your labour 
and care about them ; or that you might crave God's 
direction and blessing upon your said care and la- 
bour, you being spiritual in thoughts of worldly 
business ; then your thoughts of lawful business are 
not distempered with worldliness. 

Digitized byCjOOQlC 


m> Kwd^ w)diti u iaifd; itk/10 viutt a Ihssi. mm, ^wmz 1 

4^Us!riuiJ^ i«M>MtfftfiritUi7 iietwrf; lUiw wmsL as szn. 
IM«^ i4^^»Vf nL >l«i;e tiniti; ben iJnii||( Z'^i'i^ ^^^^ 
#Mr4j; ti**rw jrvur Utsilt »'iJJ be tiafifir iiei, ant — ::r 

iM^^^^rfHi^ iu iiifuk'mg id tiM0%€ iLxugi i»*iiii3. xel t^ 

</f f^^f*Mf^Uf who tnutt bear niaojr dkfd^ sue isr^^i-i 

li i«i mid nUni U ib« mo*t imporunt »u:; xii£ :.£- 
tf/nUh ili<<iri iinU L4ti thoughts of vorScDr ^u^i.^^ 
ht$ itiiHi ouif Mud mude to niand at the ^z/np^ z^ 
iUitif iMrif tome io be thought upon, and kc tie 
i»or« iix<'4fll((ii(| and more needful be despatched £r<c 
Hi If ilioughtf of the world will impadcDtir in- 
Irodif thur/iddvesi and will not be kept cot, rebLke 
tlmm AliMM/lyi give thorn no hearing, but dishearten 
tlitfirii Hiiil rifbuke the porter and keeper of the door 
of yiiur hdttrti that is, smitOi wound, and check 
your (joiiM'Idnotft hecouso it did not check and re- 

i, 111 mII Inwful buiincM, inure yourself fully and 
Nufllubiitly to Intend that one thing which you have 
III IimimI for tlio pruicnt; and at all times restrain 
wiiiitluiiii^ tliuughti as much as may be. Let your 

^ioh ^H Ruuh powor over the fancy, that you may 
iiUIm tu think of what you please, when you 

i«i^ \\)\\ will iiayi ** 'I'o a fickle mind this is hard, 

m iHkjHmiilbU.** To this I answer, if you would 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


and entertain evil, %ing, and unsea* 
thooglits when they arise; and wonid (as 
often as they offer themselves) be much displeased 
with them, and with yourself for them; then in 
time yon will find it possible, and not exceedingly 
haid to think of what good things you would, and 
not of what evil things you would not. 

5. When the time of thinking and doing of your 
worldly bosiness is come, then think thereof suffi- 
dently, and to good purpose; for then they will be 
the less troublesome in thrusting themselves in out 
of place, because it is known that in their place, 
they shall be fully regarded. Idleness and impro- 
vidence about these things, puts a man into straits 
many times, and into distempers about his worldly 
business, more than needs, or else would be. 

You would also know when your thoughts of suc- 
cess in your worldly affairs are evil, together with a 
- remedy against them. 

To think, that, if you be not prudent and dili- 
gent in your calling, and that if God do not bless 
your diligence, you may do the works of your call- 
ing in vain, and may expect ill success; thus to 
think is lawful and useful. For it will excite in 
you a resolution to be frugal and diligent ; and when 
you have done all you can, these thoughts also will 
quicken you to prayer unto God for success. But 
if your thoughts of thriving, or not thriving, be 
other than these, and bring forth other effects; 
namely, if desire of success drive you to think of 
using unlawful means, from doubting that you can- 
not so soon, or so certainly, or not at all, speed by 
the use of lawful only; if it make you full of 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


anxiety and fear, that though you use what good 
means you can, all will be in vain ; if you be yet 
doubtful and take anxious thought about what you 
shall eat, what you shall drink, and what you shall 
put on, or how you and yours shall live another day, 
then your thoughts about success in worldly busi- 
ness are worldly and distracted. 

I shall speak to this sin with its remedy more 
fully when I write against taking care in any thhig. 

Yet for the present, know— -All the fruit you will 
reap from unbelieving fears and distrust, doubts of 
success, &c. will be nothing else, but a farther 
degree of vexation of heart. For all the anxiety in 
the world cannot bring good success. Besides, no- 
thing provoketh the Lord to give ill success sooner, 
than when you nourish distrustful caie. 

Secondly, Consider the power and faithfulness 
of God, who hath taken care of the success of your 
labour upon himself: commanding you not to care, 
but to " cast all the care upon him." If you would 
rest upon this, you might be secure of good success 
in your outward state, even according to your desire; 
or else God will more than recompense the want 
thereof, by causing you to thrive, and to have good 
success in spiritual things, which is much better, and 
which you should desire much more. 

4. A fourth caution to be observed in your pre- 
paration to prayer, and in prayer, is, Be not slight 
and formal herein, which is, when cursorily and out 
of custom only you call your sins, your duties, 
God's favours, and his promises, into a bare and 
fruitless remembrance. For if the heart be not 
seriously affected with anger, fear, grief, and shame 

Digitized by CjOOQ IC 


for sin; and if it be not affected with a thankful 
acknowledgment of being beholden to God for his 
favours; moreover, if it be not affected with hope 
and confidence in God, at the remembrance of his 
blessed promises; and if withal, the heart be not 
gained to a renewed resolution to reform what is 
faulty, and to cry earnestly to God for grace and 
mercy; and for the time to come to endeavour to 
live a godly life, — all your preparation is nothing. 
Nay, this slight and fruitless calling of sin and duty 
to remembrance, and no more, is a great emboldener 
jaiud strengthener of sins, and a great weakener and 
quencher of the Spirit. For sins are like to idle 
vagrants, and lawless subjects ; if officers call such 
before them, and, either say nothing to them, or 
only give them threatening words, but do not smite 
them and make them smart, they grow ten times 
more bold, insolent, and lawless. 'Good thoughts 
are like to dutiful servants and loyal subjects; such 
as are ready to come at every call, and offer them- 
selves to be employed in all good services. Now if 
such be not entertained with suitable regard, if they 
be not cherished in their readiness, they, like 
David's people, return disheartened, and their edge 
to future service is taken off. Besides, this cursory 
performing of holy duties, is the highway to a habit 
of hypocrisy, that accursed bane of all that is good. 
5. My last caution is, that if in your meditations, 
and in your prayers, you find a dulness and want of 
spirituality, I would have you to be humbled in the 
sense of your impotency and infirmity : yet, be not 
discouraged nor give them over, but rather betake 
yourself to these duties with more diligence and 
D 3\ 

• Digitized by VjOOQIQ* 


earnestness. When you want water, (your pump 
being dry) you, by pouring in a little water, and 
much labour in pumping, can fetch water ; so, by 
much labouring the heart in preparation, and by 
prayer, you may recover the gift of prayer. And, 
a& when your fire is out, by laying on fuel, and by 
blowing the spark remaining, you kindle it again — 
so, by meditation, you ^* stir up the grace that is 
in you," and by the breath of prayer, may revive and 
inflame the spirit of grace and prayer in you. Yet, 
if you find that you have not time to prepare by 
meditation ; or having done so, if you find a con- 
fusion and distraction in your meditation, then it will 
be best to break through all hinderances, and 
without further preparation attend to the duty of 
prayer, only with premeditation of God to' whom, 
and of Christ by whom, through the Spirit, you 
must pray. 

If for all this you do not find satisfaction in these 
holy exercises, yet give them not over : for God is 
many times best pleased with your services, when, 
through an humble sense of your failings, you are 
displeased with yourself for them. Yet more, if 
when you have wrestled and striven with God and 
your own heart in prayer, you are forced to go 
halting away, with Jacob, in the sense of your in- 
firmities; yet be not discouraged, for it is a good 
sign that you have prevailed with God as Jacob did. 

God useth, when he is overcome by prayer, to 
work in them that do overcome some sense of weak- 
ness, to let them know, that they prevail with him 
in prayer; not by any strength of their own, or by 
any worthiness of their prayer, when they have 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


.prayed b^st; but from the goodness of God's free 
grace, from the worthiness of Christ's intercession, 
by whom they offer up their prayers, and from the 
truth of his promise made unto them that pray. If 
it were not thus, many, when they have their hearts' 
desire in prayer, would ascribe all to the goodness 
of their prayers, and not to the free grace of God; 
and would be proud of their own strength, which, 
in truth, is none at all. 


Directions for Walking with Gody in the 
Progress of the Day. 

I. General Directions. 

When you have thus begun the day in prayer 
by yourself, seeking peace with God through Jesus 
Christ, and craving his grs^cious presence to be with 
you, and for you, that day, you must then conscien- 
tiously, according to the nature of the day, (be it 
one of the six days, or the Lord's day,) apply your- 
self to the business of that day, whether it be in 
acts of religion, or of your personal calling, or in 
any other works belonging unto you, as you are su- 
perior or inferior in family, church, or commonwealth : 
doing all as in God's sight* 

And because all lawful business is ** sanctified by 

the word and prayer, and it is part of your calling, 

if you are master of a family, to govern your chil- 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


dren and servants in the fear of God, and to teach 
them to live godly, therefore it is your duty to take 
the fittest time on the morning to call them together 
and pray with them ; before which prayer, it will be 
profitable to read the Scripture in order, with due 
reverence, taking all opportunities, in fit times, to 
instruct them in the principles of religion, often 
pressing the word upon them. 

If it be a working-day, with cheerfulness and 
diligence, attend to the work of your particular call- 
ing. For whosoever hath no calling whereby he 
may be profitable to the society of man in family, 
church, or commonwealth, or having a lawful calling 
doth not follow it, he liveth inordinately. God 
never made -any man for play or to do nothing. 
And whatsoever a man doth, he must do it by virtue 
of his Christian calling, receiving warrant from it, 
else he cannot do it in faith, without which no man 
can please God. Besides, whosoever is called to 
Christianity, hath no way to heaven but by walking 
with God in his personal and particular calling, as 
well as in his general calling. 

1. That you may do this, be sure that the thing 
whereabout you labour, either with head or hand, 
be lawful and good. 

2. Be diligent and industrious ; for the sluggard 
and idle person desireth, but hath nothing; but the 
diligent band maketh rich. 

3. Let there be truth, plainness, and equity in all 
your dealings with men. Circumvent and defraud 
no man. Make not your own gain the weight and 
measure to trade by. I will propose to you sealed 
weights and rules, according to which you must 
converse with all men. ( .^^oIp 

Digitized by VjOOV It. 


(L) Consider your neighbour's good as Well as 
your own. Weigh impartially with yourself what 
proportionable advantage, in common estimation, 
your neighbour is like to have for that which you 
receive of him. For you must love your neighbour 
as yourself. In whatsoever you have to do with 
men, you must not look only to your own advantage, 
but to the benefit also of your neighbour. Observe, 
therefore, the royal law, the standard of all equity in 
this kind: ** Whatsoever you (with a rectified judg- 
ment and honest heart) would that men should do 
unto you, do you even so unto them : for this is the 
law and the prophets." 

(2.) Be watchful that you let not slip your op- 
portunities of lawful advantage ; and take heed lest 
in these evil times you be circumvented by fraud and 
falsehood, and be insnared by unnecessary surety- 

Whereas in every calling there is a mystery, and 
for the most part each calling and condition of life 
has its special sin or sins, which the devil, and cus- 
tom, for gain or credit's sake amongst evil men, 
hath made to seem lawful ; yea have put a kind of 
necessity upon it, which cannot be shunned without 
exposing a man's self to censure, — ^look narrowly, 
therefore, by the light of God's word, and by expe- 
rience, to find out that or those sins, and then be as 
careful to avoid them. 

IL Concerning Superiois and Inferiors. 

There ate other works also, such as concern you 
as you are a si^perior, and in authority; or as you 

Digitized byCjOOQlC 


are inferior, and subject, either in family, church, or 
commonwealth ; in doing which you must act for the 
glory of God, following the directions of his word 
and Spirit. 

I. As you are a superior, 

1. Walk worthy of all honour and due respect, 
behaving yourself in your place with such holiness, 
wisdom, gravity, justice, and mercy; and observing 
such a medium between too much rigour and remiss^ 
ness, between straining your authority too far, and 
relaxing it too much, that those under your charge 
may have cause to fear and love you. 

2. Wait on your oflSce, and be watchful over your 
charge with all diligence and faithfulness; using all 
good means to direct and preserve them in the du- 
ties of godliness and honesty, which is the only end 
why God hath set you over thero. The means are, 
(1.) Go before them in good example. Examples 
of superiors have a kind of constraining power, 
working strongly and insensibly upon inferiors. 
(2.) Pray with and for them. (3.) Command only 
things lawful, possible, and convenient, and only 
those to which the extent of your authority from 
God and man doth allow you. (4.) As much as in 
you lies, procure for them the means, and put them 
upon the opportunities of being, and of doing good. 
(5.) Prevent, likewise, and remove all occasions of 
their being, and of doing evil. (6.) Protect and 
defend them, according to your power from all wrongs 
and injuries. (7.) When they do well, encourage 
them, by letting them see that you take notice as 
readily of their well-doing, as of their faults ; and so 
far as is fit, let them have the praise and fruit of 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


their well-doing. (8.) When they do evil, rebuke 
them more or less, according to the nature of their 
fault; but never with bitterness, by railing at, or re- 
viling them» in terms of disdain and contempt. 
There should be always more strength of reason in 
your words to convince them of their sin, and to 
make them see their danger, and to know how to 
be reformed, than heat of anger, in uttering your 
own displeasure. (9.) If admonitions and words will 
reclaim them, then proceed not to correction and 
blows; but if they regard not your reproofs, then, 
according to the nature of the fault, and condition 
of the person, and the limits of your authority, you 
must, in mercy to their soul, give them sufficient 
but not excessive punishment. (10.) When you 
have done thus, and have waited a convenient time 
for their amendment, but find none, when they thus 
declare themselves to be rebellious, you must seek 
the help of higher authority. 

That you may govern according to these direc- 
tions, consider well and often. Firsts that those 
whom you govern, are such whom you must not 
oppress, neither may you rule over them with rigour; 
because they now are, or may be, heirs of the same 
grace together witli you. Secondly^ Remember of- 
ten, that you have a superior in heaven ; that you are 
his servant and deputy, governing under him; that 
all your authority is from him; and that, at last, a 
time will come when you must give account to 
him of your government, 

11. As you are under authority. (1.) You must 
honour and reverence all whom God hath set over 
you. (2.J You must obey them, in all such their 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


lawful commands as are within the compass of their 
authority and commission, and that with fidelity, and 
singleness of heart, for the Lord's sake; (3.) You 
-must submit to their reproofs, corrections, and just 
restraints with patience, without murmuring, or an- 
swering again, or resisting. For if you do not 
submit to the powers that be ordained of God, or if 
you resist them, you rebel against God, and resist 
the ordinance of God : which whoso doth, shall re- 
ceive to himself damnation or judgment. But if 
you, not only for wrath, but chiefly for conscience 
to God, do submit yourselves to every ordinance of 
man, doing therein the will of God from the heart, 
then, whether men requite you or not, you shall be 
sure of the Lord to receive the reward of the inhe- 
ritance : for thus obeying men, you serve the Lord 

in. Concerning Bodily Refieshment and 

The constitution of man's soul and body is such, 
that they cannot long endure to be employed, and 
stand bent with earnestness upon any thing, without 
relaxation and convenient refreshment. 

L The whole man is refreshed by eating and 
drinking: in which you roust be, first, holy; se- 
condly, just; thirdly, temperate. (1.) It was their 
sill, who fed thenfselves without all fear of God, 
Jude 12. Meats and drinks are not sanctified to 
a roan, if he be not pure and holy; and if they be 
not received with prayer and thanksgiving. (2.) You 
must not eat bread of deceit, nor ill-gotten food : 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


every man roust eat liis own bread. God would 
have no roan to eat the bread of wickedness, nor yet 
drink the wine of violence. (3.) Moreover, you must 
not eat and drink for gluttony and drunkenness, 
to please the palate, and to gorge the appetite ; but 
for health and strength. 

2. A man, when he is weary, may be refreshed, 
likewise, by variety and interchange of the duties of 
bis particular and general calling. And the best 
recreation to a spiritual mind, when it is weary of 
worldly employments, is to walk into Christ's garden; 
and there, by reading and meditating, singing of 
Psalms, and holy conference, you may soFace your- 
sdf with the sweet comforts of the Holy Spirit, and 
enliven your heart with joy in God, even joy in the 
Holy Ghost; and a delight in the commandments 
and word of God. These are the most profitable, 
most ravishing, and most lasting delights of all others. 
And by how much the soul is of a more spiritual, 
heavenly constitution, by so much more it will con- 
tent and satisfy itself in these delights. 

Yet since bodily and natural delights, are part of 
our Christian liberty, therefore, taking heed that you 
abuse not your liberty, you may, when you have 
need, recreate yourself with them. Now that you 
may innocently enjoy recreation, follow these direc- 

1. The matter of your recreation must be of a 
common nature, and of things of indifferent use^ 
Things holy are too good, and things vicious are 
loo bad, to be sported or played with. 

3. Recreations nnist be seasonable for time ; not 

on the Lord's day, in which time God forbiddeth all 

Digitized toy VjOOQ IC 


men to seek their own pleasures. Usually, direr* 
sions must be used not before, but after the body or 
mind hath been thoroughly employed in honest 
business. Not over long, to the expense and loss 
of your precious time, which you should study to 
redeem, not to trifle away. 

3. Recreations must always be inoffensive; such 
as do no harm to yourself, or to your neighbour. 
If your diversions do impeach or hazard your own, 
or your neighbour's life, estate, or comfortable living, 
they are unlawful. 

4. Recreation must be moderate, not sensual or 
brutish ; looking at no higher or farther end than 
earthly delights. For as he that eateth anddrink- 
eth that he may enlarge his appetite, to eat and 
drink yet more; so he who sporteth that he may 
sport, is brutish and sensual. It is very Epicurism: 
God hath threatened that he who loveth sport, shall 
be a poor man, and he that loveth wine and oil, shall 
not be rich. 

5. Whatsoever your diversions be, you must so 
recreate the outward man, that you be no worse, but 
rather better in the inward man. For God hath 
set such a blessed order in all lawful things, that the 
meanest being, lawfully used, shall not hinder, but 
assist us in the best things. 

6. In all recreations you must propose the right 
end. The next and immediate end is to revive your 
weary body, and to quicken your dull mind; but 
your highest and principal end is, that with this re- 
freshed body and quickened spirit, you may the bet- 
ter serve and glorify God ; that whether you eat or 
drink, or whatsoever you do else, all may be done 
to the glory of God 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


This may serve for direction how you should walk 
with God upon. any of the six days, except there be 
special cause of setting a day apart for holy use, as 
for fasting and prayer. 


Of Religious Fasting. 

I. The Nature of^ and Reasons for^ Religious 

The fast which I mentioned in the former chap- 
ter, of which I am now to treat, is a religious fast. 
Which is, sanctifying a day to the Lord by a willing 
abstinence from meat and drink, from delights and 
worldly labours, that the whole man may be more 
thoroughly humbled before God, and more fervent 
in prayer. 

This fast hath two parts ; the one, outward — the 
chastening the body ; the other, inward — the afflict- 
ing of tlie soul; under which are contained all those 
religious acts which, concern the setting of the heart 
right towards God, and the seeking help of God for 
those things, for which the fast is intended. 
• Take fasting strictly for bodily abstinence, so it 
is an indifferent thing, and is no part of God's wor- 
ship. But take it a^ it is joined with the inward 
part, and is referred to a religious end, being a pro- 
fession of an extraordinary humiliation; and it is a 
great assistance to a man's spiritual and reasonable 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


service of God, giving a stronger and speedier wing to 
prayer, which must always go with it ; sa it is^ more 
than an ordinary worship. It hath the name from 
the outward part, it heing most sensible; but hath its 
excellency and efficacy from the inward, being that 
for which the outward is observed. 

A fast is called public, when a whole state, or 
when any one public congregation doth fast. Pri- 
vate, when one alone, one family, or some few to- 
gether do fast. Public and private fasts have their 
warrant from the New Testament, as well as from 
the Old; which showeth that religioui^ fasts w^re 
not peculiar to the Jews, but are a Christian duty^ 
belonging to all fitly qualified for them. 

In the sacred scriptures we have manifold exam- 
ples of private fasts, and examples and command- 
ment for public ones. Our Lord and Saviour said, 
that his disciples after his departure from them 
should fast, and giveth directions to all concerning - 
private fasts. The apostle speaketh of husbands 
and wives abstaining from conjutral embraces^ that 
they might give themsdves to fasting and prayer. 
And we have repeated examples of the apostles and 
primitive Christians for religious fasts. All which 
prove fasting to be a Christian duty. 

The case of a person's self, or family, the church, 
or commonwealth, may be such, that ordinary humi- 
liation and prayer will not suffice. For, as there 
were some devils that could not be cast out, but by 
fasting and prayer, so it may lie that such hardness 
of heart may be grown upon a person, or some sinful 
lusts may have gotten so much strength, that they 
will not be subdued; some evils, private and public, 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


(I Sam. viir 5r 7. Judges xx. 18, 23. compared 
with verse 26.) which cnniiot be preyented or removed ; 
som^e special graces and blessings, which shall not be 
obtained or continued, but with the most importunate 
seeking of God by fasting and prayer. 

Reasons for fasting. 

Fasting is contrary to that fuhiess of bread, which 
maketh both body and soul more disposed to vice, 
and indisposed to religious duties, through drowsi- 
ness of head, heaviness of heart, dulness and dead* 
ness of spirit. Now these being removed, and the 
dominion of the flesh subdued by fasting, the body 
will be brought into subjection to the soul, and both 
body and soul to the will of God, more readily than 
otherwise thf y would be. 

A day of fasting is a great assistance to the soul, 
for the better performing of holy duties, such as 
meditation, reading, and hearing the word, prayer, 
examining', judging, and reforming a person's self; 
both because his spirits are better disposed, when he 
is fasting, to seiious devotion; and the mind being 
so long taken wholly off from the thoughts, cares, 
and pleasures of this life, he may be more intent and 
earnest in seeking of God. 

Fasting is an open profession of guiltiness before 
God,' and anexpression of sorrow and humiliation ; 
being a real acknowledgment of man's un worthiness, 
even of the common necessaries of this present life. 

But it is not enough that the body be chastened, 
if the soul be not also afflicted, because it is else 
but a mere bodily exercise, which profiteth little; 
nay, it is but a hypocritical fast, abhorred and 
ooiidemned of God; frustrating a chief end of the 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


fast, which is that the soul may be afflicted. Afflict- 
ing the soul worketh repentance; another chief end, 
and companion of fasting: "for godly sorrow worketh 
repentance, never to be repented of." 

When the soul is afflicted and heavy laden with 
sin, then a man will readily and earnestly seek after 
God, even as the sick do to the physician for health, 
and as a condemned man to the king for a pardon. 
In their affliction, saith God, they will seek me 
diligently. If this be true of the outward, then 
much more of inward affliction. 

The afflicted soul is a fit object of God's mercy; 
to him doth God look that is poor, and of a contrite 
spirit, that trembleth at his word ; yea, the bowels 
of his fatherly compassion are troubled for him, who 
is troubled and ashamed for his sin. 

Moreover, upon a day of humiliation, if a roan 
deal sincerely, this affliction of his soul driveth him 
quite out of himself to seek help of God in Christ; 
and maketh him endeavour to bring his soul into 
such good frame, that he may truly say he doth not 
" regard iniquity in his heart," and that his unfeigned 
purpose is, and endeavour shall be, to keep a good 
conscience toward God and man alway. Whence 
fblloweth boldness, and assurance, through Christ 
Jesus, that God will be found of him, and that in 
God's own time, and in the best manner, he shall 
have all his holy desires fulfilled. 

Who are to observe religious fasts. 

All whom lawful authority enjoineth, are to keep 
a public fast, so far as health will permit. 

These only may keep a private fast : 

1. Such as are of understanding: else how cau 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


they search out their ways, judge themselves, or 
pray. In public fasts, if authority think fit, little 
children may be caused to fast, that the parents, 
and others of understanding, may, as by objects of 
misery, be stirred up to a more thorough humiliation; 
but, in private, children and idiots are to be ex- 

2. Novices and unexperienced Christians are not 
usually to fast in private : — such were Christ's disci- 
ples. When exception was taken at our Saviour, 
because they fasted not, he excuseth them, not only 
that it was unseasonable to fast in a time of joy, 
while he, the bridegroom, was with them; but be- 
cause they were not able to bear so strong an exer- 
cise, they being like old vessels and old garments, 
which would be made worse rather than better by 
the new wine, or new cloth of fasting. Strong 
physic is good, but not for babes. There is not 
the same reason why they may fast in private as in 
public ; because the minister by teaching them, and 
by praying with them, and for them, taketh from 
them the greatest part of the burden of the fast in 

3. All such as are not in their own power, are 
not to keep a private fast, when those under whose 
power they are shall expressly contradict it. For 
the husband might disallow the vow of his wife, even 
that wherewith she had bound herself to afflict her 
soul by fasting. Wherefore none may fast against 
the will of those who have full power to command 
their service and attendance. 

When, and how long, fasts are to be obseTveA. — 
Public fasts are to be 'kept as often as' auiVvotvV.^. 
shall see cause, 

** Digitized by VjOOQIC 


Private, as often as a man shall have more than; 
ordinary cause of seeking unto God, either for others 
or himself, for removing or preventing imminent 
judgments from the church and commonwealth, or 
for procuring their necessary good, for subduing 
some headstrong lust, for obtaining some necessary 
grace, or special blessing, for preparing himself for; 
some special service of God, or the like. 

Though I cannot but justly complain of Chris- 
tians seldom fasting, yet I dare not allow you to 
make this extraordinary exercise of religion to be 
ordinary and common : for then it will soon degen- 
erate into mere form or superstition ; but wish you to 
observe it as you shall have special occasion, and 
when ordinary seeking of God is not likely to prevail. 

It is indifferent which of the six days you set 
apart for fasting ; let it be as shall best suit with 
your occasions. As for the Lord's day, though it 
cannot be denied but that if the present necessity 
require, you may fast upon that day, neither can I 
utterly deny servants, and such as are under the 
power of others, if they can have no other time, 
sometimes to make choice of that day; yet because 
the Sabbath is a day of Christian cheerfulness,, and 
fasting is somewhat of the nature of a free-wili of- 
fering, I think you will do best to set such a day 
apart to yourself for fasting, which is more your 
own, and not the Lord's day. . 

The scripture hath not determined how long a 
continued fast should be kept. We have examples 
that some have fasted a longer time, as three days, 
some a shorter, but none less tlian one day. In 
hotter countries they could, withoutinjury to health. 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


abstain from food longer than we can who live in a, 
colder ; but I think the body cannot usually be suf- 
ficiently afflicted through want of food in less time 
than one day. 

Thus I have proved religious fasting to be a 
Christian duty. And have shown what it is; who 
should and may fast, when and how long. It re* 
maiueth.that I show you how you may keep a fast 
acceptable to God, and profitable to yourself; which 
is the principal thing to be regarded in a fast. And 
this do I the rather, because many well-afiected 
Christians have professed that they would gladly set 
about this duty, but ingenuously confess that they 
know not how to do it, and, in particular, how to 
be intent and spiritually employed, for want of 
matter, for a whole day together. But of this in 
the next section. 

II. Directions for the keejpitig a Religious Fast. 

Byway of preparation to a religious fast, do thus: 
Take but a moderate supper the night before; for 
if a man glut himself over night, he will be more 
unfit for the duty of humiliation the next day, and it 
difFereth in effect little from breaking of fast next 

When you commend yourself to God alone by 
prayer that night (as every good Christian doth) 
then set yourself* in a special manner to seek the 
Lord, as the saints of God, in the beginning of their 
fasts, have done; proposing to yourself the end of 
your intended fast; remembering this, that if the 
chief occasion and end be your own private good. 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


that you forget not others, nor the public; or if it be 
the public, yet mind also your own private: for until 
you have renewed your own peace with God, your 
fasting and praying will prevail little for the publicf 
And God having joined the public with our private 
good in prayer, we must not disjoin them in our 
fasting. Resolve with yourself, to the utmost of 
your power, to keep a r.eligious fast unto God, ac- 
cording to his will. For this cause in your prayers 
add serious petitions to God for his grace to assist 
you therein. 

When you awake that night, let not your 
thoughts be upon worldly business, much less upon 
any evil thing; but let them be holy, such as may 
tend to the assistance of the holy duties of the next 

Also, if necessity hinder not, arise early on the 
day of your fast. It is most agreeable to a day of 
fasting, whereon your flesh is to be subdued, that 
you allow not yourself so much sleep as at other 
times. It is probable, that for this cause some lay 
on the ground, others in sackcloth, in the nights of 
their fasts, not only to express, but to assist their 
humiliation, by keeping them from sleeping over 
much, or over sweetly. 

When the day is come, be strict in observing the 
outward fast. To this end, 

I. Forbear all meat and drink, until the set time 
of the fast be ended, which usually is about supper 
time. A general council in the primitive church 
decreed, that total abstinence should be observed 
until evening prayer was ended. In case of neces- 
sity', that is, when total abstinence will indeed dis« 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


able you from attending to the chief duties of that 
day, you may eat or drink; for in such cases God 
will have mercy rather than sacrifice: but then it 
must be a small refreshment, and that not of a 
dainty kind; only such and so much as may remove 
the impediment to the spiritual performance of the 
duties of that day. 

2. Abstain from all other worldly delights, as (so 
far as will stand with comeliness) from fine apparel» 
from all recreations and pleasant music, from the 
marriage bed, and the like. 

3. Abstain from all worldly labour, as upon a 
Sabbath day; for worldly business, and the cares 
thereof, do distract the thoughts, and hinder devo- 
tion, as well as worldly delights; and a ceasing from 
these giveth a full opportunity to holy employments 
the whole day. Therefore the Jews were com- 
manded to sanctify a fast. And that yearly fast, 
called the " day of atonement," was, upon peril o{ 
their lives, to be kept by a forbearance of all manner 
of work. Now although the ceremonials of that day 
are abolished in Christ, yet, forbearing work, as 
well as meat and drink (being of the substance and 
morality of a fast) doth remain to be observed in all 
truly religious fasts. 

Thus much for the outward fast: you must be as 
strict in observing the inward. 

Begin the day with prayer, according as I directed 
you to do every day; but with more than ordinary 
preparation; with fervency and faith, praying for 
God's special grace, to enable you to sanctify a fast 
that day, according to the commandment. 

Then apply yourself to the main work of the day^ 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


which hath these parts: (1.) Unfeigned humiliation: 
(2.) Reformation, together with reconciliation ; and 
(3.) Earnest invocation. 

The soul is then humbled, the heart broken and 
truly afflicted, when a man is become vile in his own 
eyes, through consciousness of his own unworthiness, 
and when his heart is full of grief and anguish 
through fear of God's displeasure; and with godly 
sorrow and holy shame in himself, and anger against 
himself for sin. These affections excited da much 
afflict the heart. 

This deep humiliation is to be wrought, partly by 
awakening your conscience through a sight of the 
law, and apprehensions of God's just judgments due 
to you for the breach of it, which will break your 
heart; and partly by the gospel, raising your mind 
to an apprehension and admiration of the love of 
God to you in Christ, which will melt your heart, 
and cause you the more kindly to grieve, and to loathe 
yourself for sin, and also to entertain hope of mercy, 
whence will follow reconciliation, reformation, and 
holy calling upon God by prayer. 

To work this humiliation, there must be. 

First, Examination, to find out your sins. 

Secondly, An accusation of yourself, with due 
aggravation of your sins. 

Thirdly, Judging and passing sentence against 
yourself for sins. 

Sin is the transgression of the law, and revealed 
will of God : wherefore for the better finding out of 
your sins, you must set before you God's holy law, 
for your light and rule. And if you have not 
learned, or cannot remember the heads of the mani- 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


fold duties commanded, or vices forbidden, then get 
some catalogue or table, wherein the same are set 
down to your hand; which you may read with serious 
consideration and self-inquiry, fixing your thoughts 
most upon those particular sins whereof you find 
yourself most guilty. 

If you do not meet with one more fit for your 
purpose, then use the following table. ' But expect 
not herein an enumeration of all particular sins and 
duties, whieh would require a volume; but of those 
which are principal and most common ; by which, if 
your conscience be awakened, it will bring to your 
remembrance other sins and omissions of duly, not 
mentioned in the table, of which you may be guilty. 

The first table of the law concerns the duties of 
love and piety to God, the performance whereof 
tendeth immediately to the glory of God, and me- 
diately to the salvation and good of man. 

1st, TAe first commandment respecteth the loving^ 
servings and glorifying the only true God, as 
your God, Exod. xx. 2, 3. 

Examining yourself by this (and so in the other 
commandments) think thus with yourself: Do I 
know and acknowledge the only true God to be such 
a one as he hath revealed himself in his word and 
works, namely, one only infinite, immaterial, immu- 
table, incomprehensible spirit, and everlasting Lord 
God; having being and all-sufficiency in and from 
himself; one who. is absolutely full of all perfections, 
and incapable of the least defect; being wisdom, 
goodness, omnipotence, love, truth, mercy, justice, 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


holiness, and whatsoever is originally and of itself 
excellent. The only Potentate, King of kings, 
Lord of lords, of whom, through whom, and to 
whom are all things. The Father, Son, and Holy ^ 
Ghost, God blessed for ever. Amen. 

Do I believe his word, in all things related, com- 
manded, promised, and threatened therein? and that 
his holy and wise providence is in all things? Have 
I him and his word in continual remembrance? 

Do I esteem and exalt God in my heart above all, 
so that it doth humbly adore him at the very men- 
tion and thought of him; judging myself to be 
nothing in mine own eyes, yea, esteeming all crea- 
tures to be nothing in comparison of him? 

Have 1 given religious worship to him only?" 
Have I believed in him, and in him only? Have I 
sworn by him as there hath been cause, and by him 
alone? Have I prayed unto him, and to him alone? 
And sought to obtain help of him only by such 
means as he hath appointed ; giving the glory and 
thanks of my being and well-being, and of all other 
things which are good unto him? 

Is my conscience so convinced of the truth and 
authority of God, that it holdeth itself absolutely 
bound to obey him in all things, so that it doth incite 
to that which is good, restrain from that which is 
evil, encourage me in well-doing, and check me 
when I do ill ? 

is my will resolved upon absolute and unfeigned 
obedience; to do whatsoever God conimandeth, to 
forbear whatsoever he forbiddeth, to subscribe to 
whatsoever he doth, as well done ; and have I borne 
patiently, all that, which either by himself or by any 
of hi^ creatures, he hath inflicted upon me?, 

Digitize* by VjOOQIC 


Have mine affections been so for God, that I 
have loved him with all my heart, loving nothing 
more than him, nothing equal to him? Do I hate 
every thing that is contrary to him? Hath my con- 
fidence been only in him, and my expectation of 
good from him? Have my desires been to him, and 
for him, longing above all things to have communion 
with him ? Hath it been my greatest fear to offend 
him, or to be separated from him ? Hath it been 
my greatest grief and shame that I have sinned 
against him ? Have I rejoiced in God as my chief 
good? Hath mine anger risen against whatsoever 
I saw contrary to his glory? Have I been zealous 
for God? And have I made him the utmost end of 
all mine actions ? 

Hath my whole outward man, as tongue, senses, 
and all other active powers of my body, been em- 
ployed in the service of the true God, and yielded 
obedience to his will ? 

Or, contrariwise, am I not guilty of denying of 
God in word, in works, or at least in heart? ques- 
tioning the truth of his being, and of his word, 
denying his providence, power, or some other of his 
divine attributes? Have I not been ignorant of 
God, and of his will, and erroneous and misbelieving, 
if not heretical in my conceptions concerning God 
the Father,. Son, or Holy Ghost? 

Have I not been over curious in prying into the 
nature and secret counsels of God, beyond the rule 
of the revealed will of God? Have I not put my- 
self, or any other creature in the place of -God? 
through pride preferring, and resting upon mine 
own way and will before God's, or, by making my- 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


self mine utmost end, professing God and bis religion, 
only to serve my own designs, or by seeking to the 
creature, instead of the Creator ? 

Have I not been forgetful of God, and of his 
will ? Is not my conscience impure, blind, deluded, 
or seared; and my will perverse, obstinate, impatient, 
and murmuring against God, and full of dissimulation ? 

Have I not set my affections upon the world, 
rather than upon God, loving that which is evil, 
hating that which is good, yea, God himself, if not 
directly, yet in his holiness, shining in his ordi- 
nances and in his children, or as he is a severe inflic- 
ter of punishment? fearing man more than God, 
trusting in the creature, making something besides 
God my chief joy? Have I not presumed, when I 
had cause to despair, and despaired after that I had 
cause to hope? Have I not tempted God many 
ways? And have I not in the matters of God been 
either cold, lukewarm, or blindly or preposterously 

Hath there not « been a proneness in my whole 
outward roan, to rebel against God ? 

8d, The second commandment concemeth all such 
worship of God^ *xhich he only hath appointed; 
whereby he communicateth himself to man^ and 
man again maketh profession of him : forbidding 
(under one kind) all such as are not by him or- , 
dainedj Exod. xx. 4—6. 

Think thus: Have I worshipped God in spirit i 
and truth, in all the kinds and parts of his worship, i 
public and private, ordinary or extraordinary; as, by ^ 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


faearingj reading, aii4 meditating of his word; bj 
by praying,! praising, and giving thanks to him; by 
a light use of his sacraments, baptism, and the 
Lord's supper; and by reBgious fasting, religious 
feasting, and making of vows, according as I have 
had special occasion? And have I done what has 
been in my power for the m)aintaiuing and promot- 
ing of God's true worship; and have I, according to 
my place, executed aright, or submitted unto the 
govemraent and discipitue of the church of God ? 

Or, besides the omissicMQ of the former duties, am 
I not guilty, some way or other, of iddl-worship, 
conceiving of God in my mind, or representing him 
to my sense, in the likeness of any creature? 

Have I not added to or detracted from, any part 
of God's worship? Have I not run into the ap- 
pearances and occasions of idolatry, as, by presence 
at idol-service, by marriage and needless familiarity 
with idolatrous persons ? ' At least, is not my heart 
guilty of not hating, but rather lingering after, 
idolatrous worship? Have I not been guilty of 
superstition or will-worship, &c. ? 

3d, TAe third commandment concemeth the glory of 
GocCs holy name^ shining forth in his titles^ at- 
tributes^ religion^ word^ ordinances^ people^ or 
any thiTig that hath in it any signatures of his 
holiness or excellency ; forbidding (he taking of 
it in vainj and that in all words or actions^ re^ 
tigious or common, Exod. ^, 7. 

Have I glorified God, by answering my holy 
profession, with a holy and unblameable conversa- 

E / 31 , 

Digitized by VjiOOQ IC 


tion ; by performing all holy duties with due prepara- 
tion, knowledge and devotion, also by thinking and 
speaking of the names and holy things of God with 
holy reverence ; and in particular by fearing an oath? 

Or, have I not caused the name, religion, and 
people of God, to be ill thought of, and dishonoured 
by my evil course of living, or at least by commi- 
ting some gross sin? Am I not guilty of rash, un- 
prepared, heedless, forgetful, and fruitless reading, 
hearing, receiving the sacraments, or performances 
of any other part of the worship of God ? 

Have I not thought or spoken blasphemously or 
contemptuously of God, or any of the things of God ? 
Have I not used the name of God needlessly, 
rashly, wickedly, or falsely in swearing, or lightly 
in my salutations, admirations, or otherwise in my 
ordinary discourse ? 

Have I not abused the name of God, his scrip- 
tures, his ordinances and creatures, using them for 
other purposes than he alloweth, as, for sports, 
charms, or any sorcery, luxury, or the like ? Have 
1 not passed by the great works of God's power, 
mercy, and judgments, (especially of his redeeming 
love in Christ Jesus,) without due observation and 
acknowledgment of God therein ? 

4th, The fourth commandment concerneth the or- 
dinary solemn time of the service and worship of 
Godf reqtiiritig that the seventh day (now our 
Lord^s day) be ^ept as a holy rest, Exod. xx. 

Have I upon the six days remembered the Lord's 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


day, that I might despatch all ray worldly business, 
and prepare my heart, that when it came I might 
keep a holy Sabbath to the Lord, according to the 
commandment? Did I, according as my health 
would permit, rise early on that day ? 

Have I performed my daily (both morning and 
evening) exercises of religion alone, and with my 
family, that day in prayer ? 

Have I caused all under my authority, according 
to my power, to rest from all manner of works and 
worldly recreations; also myself, not only from the 
labour of my body, but of my mind in all worldly 
business; except about the things that concern 
common honesty, and comeliness, works of mercy, 
and such works of necessity as could not be done 
before, or let alone till afterwards ? 

Have I always prepared my heart before I went 
into the house and presence of God, by meditation 
of God's word and works, and in particular by ex- 
amination and reformation of my ways, by prayer, 
thanksgiving, and holy resolution to carry myself as 
in God's presence, and to hear and obey whatsoever 
I should be taught out of the word of God ? 

Have I caused my family to go with me to the 
church ? And did I with them come in due time, 
and, being there, stay the whole time of prayer, 
reading, and preaching of the word, singing of* 
psalms, receiving and administering the sacraments, 
even that of baptism, when others are baptized ; and 
did I attend diligently, and join with the minister 
and the rest of the congregation in all those holy 

Did I spend the day, after the morning and even- 
£ 2 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


ing prayers, sermons, or catechising, in meditation, 
and (as I had opportunity) in conference and repeti- 
tion of what I had heard ? Also in visiting the sick, 
and other works of mercy; and so, from the begin'- 
iiing to the end of the day, have heen employed in 
holy thoughts, words, and deeds, and all this with 
spiritual delight ? 

Or, am I not guilty of forgetting the Lord's day 
before it came, and of neglecting and profaning it 
when it came? as by mere idleness, or by taking 
opportunity of leisure from the business of my call* 
ing to be licentious in company keeping, &c. or by 
reserving that day for journeys, idle visits, and for 
despatch of worldly business ? 

Have I not been careless of the service of God, 
frequenting it no oftener than law, or very shame 
did compel me ? 

Have I not been careless whether my servants or 
children, did keep the Sabbath or not ? And when I 
was at church, did I not idle away the time, by gaz- 
ing about, or by sleeping, or by worldly thoughts ? 

Have I not bought, sold, spoken of, or donfi 
other works forbidden to be done, spoken, or con- 
trived upon that day ? 

Have I not, under the name of recreation, sought 
mine own pleasure, using sports and games, which 
cause the mind to be more indisposed to the due 
performance of holy duties than honest labours do, 
to which they are subordinate, and with thera for- 
bidden to be done that day ? 

Hath not the strict Observance of the Sabbath 
been at least tedious to me, so that I could have 
-wished that it liad J)een gone long before it was 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


5th, 754^ second table concerneth duties of love and 
righteousness towards many the performance 
whereof tendeth immediately to the good of man; 
biU mediately to the proof of his being tndy re~ 
ligiouSf and to the glory of God. 

God made ipan not to be alone^ nor to be only 
for himself; therefore, for the greater good of man- 
kind, he hath endued men with variety of gifts, and 
degrees of place, some excelling others, both in 
family, church, and commonwealth; yet so as each 
is excellent in his gift and place, even the meanest 
made worthy of respect from the greatest, because 
of his usefulness for the common good: even as the 
least member of the natural body is truly useful and 
to be respected as well, though not so much, as the 
most honourable. 

Now when each member in the body politic doth 
acknowledge the several gifts and mutual use one of 
another, according to their place, then is there a 
sweet harmony in the society of man, and there is a 
sure foundation laid of all good offices of love between 
man and man. 

Wherefore, in the first place, God in the fifth 
commandment, Exod. xx. 12. provideth that the 
order which he had set amongst men, should inviol- 
ably be observed; requiring all inferiors, under the 
name of children, to honour their superiors, that is, 
to acknowledge that digtaity and excellency which is 
in them, showing it in giving due respect unto their 
persons and names; implying that all superiors 
should walk worthy of honour, and that they should 
mutually show good respect to their inferiors^ seek- 
ing their good, as well as their own. ogtzedbyLiOOgle 


Concerning this fifth commandment, think thus: 
Do I live in a lawful calling ? And have I walked 
worthy my general calling of Christianity, and dis- 
charged my particular calling, and employed the 
gifts which God gave me, for the good of society, 
of man, in family, church, or commonwealth ? 

Have I honoured all men, for that they were 
made after the image of God, and have yet some re- 
mains thereof; are capable of having it renewed, if 
it be not renewed already ; and because they are or 
may be useful for the common good of man ; using 
them with all courteousness and kind respect; ex- 
cepting when, and wherein, they have made them- 
selves vile by open wickedness; so that it will not 
stand with the glory of God, good of others, or of 
themselves, or with the discharge of my place, to 
show them countenance? Have I shown my due 
respect to others, in praying to God, and, as there 
hath been cause, in giving him thanks for them ? 

Have I conceived the best, that in charity I 
might, of others? And by love have endeavoured, 
according to my place, to cure their grosser evils, 
and ta cover their infirmities? And have I to my 
power promoted my neighbour's good name and re- 
putation, and have I been contented, nay desirous, 
ih^t he should be esteemed as well, nay, better than 
myself? And have I, both in his life-time, and after 
his death, given him the honour of common hu- 
manity, as in common civilities at least, and in comely 
burial, so far as any way it did belong to me, and in 
maintaining his injured reputation? &c. 

Have I, being superior to others in gifts of any 
kind, as, learning, wit, wealth, strength, &c. em* 

Digitized by VoiOOQIC 


ployed those gifts to the honour of God, and the 
good of man, more than others ? 

As I am beyond others in years, am I superior to 
them in gravity, good counsel, and good example ? 

As I am above others in authority, do I ac- 
knowledge that it is not originally in me, but de- 
rived to me from God, and have I held it, and used 
it for him ? keeping within the due limits thereof, 
governing with wisdom and moderation ; procuring 
the good of their bodies and souls, so far as lay in 
me ; commanding only things lawful and convenient; 
encouraging them in well-doing, by commendation 
and rewards ; preventing evil as much as I could, 
and. restraining it in them by seasonable and due 
reproofs, according to the quality of the offence, 
and of the person, when fairer means would not 
prevail ? 

As I am an equal; have I esteemed others better 
than myself, and striven in honour to prefer them ? 

As I am below others in gifts and age, have I in 
word and gesture, shown them due reverence, and 
thankfully made use of their good parts and experi- 
ences ? 

As I am under authority, whether in family, 
church, or commonwealth, have I submitted myself 
to all my governors, reverencing their persons, 
obeying readily all those their lawful commandments, 
which are within the compass of their authority to 
enjoin me ? Have I received their instructions, and 
borne patiently and fruitfully their reproofs and cor- 
rections ? 

Or do I not live without a lawful calling ? or idly 
. or unprofitably in it ? Hare I not buried or abused 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


ny talent^and place,: to the hurtxathsr tb«iiith&gpo4 
of myself and others ? . 

Have I not been higbroiindedy esteemkig better 
of myself than there, wascause^ seeking, after the 
vain applause of men ? 

Have I. not despised others?. Yea^ those who 
were goo(}, yea, my .superiors? Showings it b^^^my 
irreverent, gestures^. and bymy speecshes. tothens 
and of them? Have I no^ some wayior other,, de- 
tracted from, and.dimsnx6hedlbecredH4>f others, .01% 
at least, envied their dqe ostimatioB? ..:..-. 

As I am a superior, have I not carried myself in*- 
solently, lightly, or dissolutely? 

As I am under authotityy iiave I not carried mf^ 
self stubbornly and undutifiilly? . 

6th, God having set an order in human society ^ 
doth next provide for the life and safety of the 
person of many noho must keep this orders and 
make this society^ by Jbrbiddingy in the sixth 
commandment, nsjkatsoever may take it away^ or 
impair it. 

Have I had a car^ of mine^ovn health, in a sober 
use of meat, drink, labour, sleep, recieatioB,- physic, 
or whatever rise is apt to promote l)eahh, aud to 
prevent disease? 

Have I been, or am I meek, patient, Iong^sitff«>- 
ing, easy to be appeased, apt ta forgive, full. of com- 
passion, kind, merciful ;. showing, air these in SO& 
speeches, gentle answers, courteous behaviour, re- 
quiting evil with good, comforting the s^ieted,> re- 
lieving the needy, peace^making, .and.by .di4^8 ^ 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


other offices of Iove» which might tend to my neigh* 
hour's safety or comfort ? 

Or, have I not wished myself dead, or neglected 
the me^ns of my health ? Have I not impaired it, 
by surfeits, by excessive labour or sports, by fretting 
and over grieving, or by any other means ? And 
have I not had thoughts of doing myself harm ? 

Have 1 not been angry unadvisedly, maliciously, 
and revengefully ? showing surly gestures and be- 
haviour, as sour looks, shaking the head or hand, 
gnashing the teeth, stamping, mocking, railing, 
cursing, quarrelling, smiting, hurting, or taking 
away the life of man in any way, without God's 
allowance ? 

Have I not been a sower of discord, or some 
way or other been an occasion of tlie discomfort, if 
not the death of others? 

7th, The seventh commandment concerneth chastity, 
whereby God provideth for a pure propagation 
and conservation of mankind; forbidding all 
bodily pollutiony under the name of adultery^ 
Exod. XX. 13* 

Have I been modest, sober, shamefaced, possess- 
ing my body in chasity, shutting mine eyes, and 
stopping mine ears, and restraining my other senses 
from all objects aud occasions of lust ? bridling my 
tongue from lascivious speeches; forbearing all 
manner of obsceneness and wantonness; abstaining^ 
from self-pollution, fornication, or any other natural 
or unnatural defilement of my body, either in deed ov 
desire ? 

Digitized byC:iOOQlC 


And being married, was I wise in my choice? 
and have I kept the marriage-bed undefiled, through 
a sanctified, sober, and seasonable use thereof? 

Or, am I not guilty of manifold acts of unclean- 
ness; at least of immodest looks, touches and em- 
braces; of wanton speeches, gestures, apparel, and 

Have I not run into the manifold occasions of 
adultery and uncleanness: as idleness, gluttony, 
drunkenness, choice of such meats, drinks, or any 
other things that provoke lust; efieminate dancing, 
frequenting wanton company, or of unseasonable 
conversing with the other sex alone ? 

8th, The eighth covimandment concemeth the pre- 
servQtion of man^s goodsy the means of his com- 
fortable maintenance in this life^ Jbrbidditig all 
injuries and wrongs^ under the name ^stealing. 

Have I a good title to the things which I pos- 
sess, as by lawful inheritance, gift, reward, contract, 
or any other way which God alloweth? Have I 
been industrious and faithful in my calling, frugal 
and provident ? Have I done that for which I have 
received pay or maintenance from others; and have 
I given to every man his own, whether tribute, 
wages, debts, or any other dues? 

Or, have I not got my living by an unlawful call- 
ing? or have I impoverished myself and mine by 
idleness, luxurious and unnecessary expenses? by 
gaming, unadvised suretyship, or otherwise? Have 
^ not withheld from myself or others, through covet- 

ness, that which should have been expended ? 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


Have I not gotten or kept my neighbour's goods, . 
by fraud, oppression, falsehood, or by force, and 
made no restitution ? Have I not some way or other 
impaired my neighbour's estate ? 

9th, The ninth commandment concerneth truth of 
speech; the great means of intercourse between 
man and man^ and of preserving the rights^ and 
redressing the disorders of human society; Jbr^ 
bidding all falsehood of speech^ under the name 
of bearing false witness, Exod. xx. 14. 

Have I at all times, in all things spoken the 
truth from my heart? giving testimony, in public 
or private, by word or writing, of things concerning 
mine own or neighbour's name, credit, life, chastity, 
goods, or in any matters of speech between me or 
others, whether in affirming, denying, with or with- 
out oath, or in any bare reports, promises, or in any 
other way? 

Or am I not guilty of telling lies jcbiiiigly, 
officiously, or perniciously? Have I not raised, 
spread, or received false reports of my neighbour? 
Have I not spoken falsely in buying and selling ; 
also in commending by word or writing unworthy 
persons, in dispraising the good, in boasting of my- 
self, or flattering of others ? 

Have I not given false evidence, used equivoca- 
tions, or concealed the truth which I should have 
spoken, or perverted it when I did speak it ? 

d by Google 


10th, The tenth commandment eoncemeth content- 
ment mth a inan*s aom condition; the fotmdatian 
of all orde}* and justice amongst men; forbidding 
the contrary^ namely ^ coveting Ma/ which is not 
hisj Exod. xiL. 15. 

Am I contented with mine own condition, as,' 
with my place which I hold i^n family^ church, or 
commonwealth, with husband or wife, house or 
estate ? Can I heartily rejoice in the prosperity of 
others, even when they are greater, happier, wiser, 
or better than myself? 

Or have I not been full of discontents with- my 
condition, coveting after something or other which- 
was my neighbours? at least by actual concupiscence,^ 
in multitude of evil and envious thoughts,: arising 
from the law of ray members, though my will bath 
contradicted them? 

Secondly, Rules for Siilf- exam i?mtion from the 
Gospel of Christ. 

Besides the breaches of God*s holy lawy have J. 
not been guilty of many sins, peculiarly, against tlie 
gospel of our Lord Jes^is Christ ? Such, as^ op«. 
positio4i to, and hatied of Christ, and>his cause;, 
being incensed against him, and his method of saL-. 
vation ; or vilifying his gospel by word or writing? 

Scepticism and gross infidelity, from a disinclina*-: 
tion to conviction ; and not impartially,, in the fear, 
of God, weighing the evidences in proof of the 
heavenly mission of our Lord and Saviour? 

Unsound faith; not extended to all the reve^^led 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


truths and dnties* of the: gospel; eitbtr through cul- 
pable ignorance, strong prejudice, lesolviug t6 
believe do. farther than I can comprehemi, er may 
be Gonsislent with the .quiet of my conscience in. an 
evil course? Or has it been a mere national and 
historical f^ith? Hawevci extended to all the doc- 
trines, duties, promises^ and: threatenings :of the 
gospel, yet not attended with heart-imprefisions^ 
humbling .the soul, making me poor in spirit at the 
feet of Christ; seeking the glory of God «nd the 
Redeemer^ and;my own salvation, as. nty: chief busi- 
ness? Has it been such a faith that: doth not 
purify the heart; that worketh uot by Idve; that 
unites not the soul to Chri&t, so as to crucify the 
flesh with the afFections^and hists; .that directs not 
the whole .conversation by the will and, example of 
our acknowledged Lord and Master; not resting by 
faith in his promises, .in. all seasons of:adversity and 
prosperity ;. that moderates . not fear and hope coni- 
cerning things present and temporal, : by looking to 
Jesus, and things eternal ; that does not trust and 
rely upon Christ alone (in .the prescribed way) for 
justification and salvation; submitting, unto the 
righteousness of God in him? t 

Impcnitency;, not being seriously ; affected with an 
humbling-.s^iise of. the odious nature of sin; not 
searching out my offences, but hiding and extenuat- 
ing them? Not abasing myself for my siiLs (so 
many and aggravated) against, all the love of the 
Father, the grace of the Son, and the strivings of 
the Holy Spirits No, resolved and vigilant; forsak- 
ing of sin^ am} bringing leri(h»fruita meet for repen- 
tance. . -.: 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 



Despair of God's mercy in Christ Jesus, saying, 
** There is no hope?" 

Presumption, and turning the grace of God into 
lasciviousness ; continuing in sin, that grace may 

Making light of Christ, not esteeming him as the 
pearl of great price, and being willing to part with 
all to obtain it. 

Slighting the benefits of redemption; such as 
peace with God through the blood of Christ; the 
gift of the Holy Spirit as sanctifier ; meetness for, 
and a title to the kingdom of heaven ; and commu-* 
nion with God in the way to it? 

Undervaluing the means of salvation? The holy 
scriptures, secret prayer, public worship, the sacra- 
ments, &c. and not being spiritual in, if attendant 
upon them. 

Great coldness and indifference about the honour 
of the sacred name into which I was baptized, and 
all the peculiar doctrines of the gospel? 

No joyful progress in the works of faith and la- 
bours of love, to the full assurance of hope, even 
where faith is unfeigned ? 

Inconstancy and fickleness in the service of God, 
with the natural consequences thereof, despondency, 
diffidence, and the ^' spirit of bondage again to fear?" 

Slavish fear and cowardice? 

Declensions in the love of Christ and the fruits 
of holiness; and growing conformity to the world, 
luxury, gaiety, pastimes, &c. with increasing inatten- 
tion to the soul's immortality, the approach of death 
and eternity, the coming of the Lord, the resurrec- 
tion and judgment-day, heaven's joys or hell's horrors ? 

Digitized by VjOOQIC . 


Upon the whole,-*-^* How shall man be just with 
(or justify himself before) God? If he contend 
with him, he cannot answer him one of a thousand." 
—So that " every mouth must be stopped/' since 
** all the world is become guilty before God."— 
*^ Being justified (if ever) freely by his grace, through 
the redemption that is in Jesus Christ ; whom God 
hath set forth (in the most illustrious mannei) to be 
a propiation, through faith in his blood." 

" Beware," therefore, ^* lest that come upon you 
which is spoken of in the prophets: Behold ye 
despisers, and wonder, and perish.— Examine your- 
selves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own 
selves: know ye not your own selves, how that 
Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be reprobates?" 

Thirdly, Self-judging for Sin. — The evil nature 
and effects of Sin. 

Thus having by God's holy law found out your 
sins, you must arraign and accuse yourself, as it 
were, at the bar of God's tribunal; representing your 
sins to your mind as they are, in their heinousuess 
and mischievousness, according to their several ag- 

]. Consider sin in its nature. It is a moral evil, an 
irregularity in the soul and actions, an enmity to 
God the chief good; it is the worst evil, worse than 
the devil and Satan: he had not been a devil but for 
sin. Worse than hell, which, as it is a torment, is 
caused by sin, and is only contrary to the good of 
the creature, whereas sin itself is contrary to the 
good of the Creator. It is such a distemper of the 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


sotti, that the Bcrjpiure calletb it ' *^ wickedness" of 
folly," even ^^ foolishness of madness*" 

2. Consideriitg from whence siivin roan had its 
original; even from the deril, who is the father of it* 
It came, and coBieth from hell; therefore is earthly^ 
sensual, devilish. Whensoever you sin,' you do 
the lusts of the deviU 

3. .Consider the nature of the law whereof sin is 
a transgression. A law most perfect, most holy, 
just, and good; which wtmld ha^e given eterna) life 
to the doersr of it, had it not been for this cursed 

4. Consider the person against whom sin is com- 
mitted, Whom it highly offend eth and provoketh. It 
is God, to whom' you owe yourself and all that you 
have; who made, and doth preserve you, and yours; 
who, though you have sinned, desireth not your 
death, nor affiicteth you willingly, but had rather 
that you should humble yourself, repent, and live; 
who, that- you might be saved, gave his only begot- 
ten Son to death, to ransom you ; who, by his mini* 
stersy mnketh known his word and good-will towards 
you', making proclamation that if you will repent 
and believe, you shall be saved; yea, entreateth you 
by his ministers to be reconciled to him. It is that 
God, who is rich in goodness, forbearance, and long- 
suffering, waiting when you will return, that you 
may live; who, on the other hand, if you despise 
this his goodness, and shall continue in yotrr sin, 
thereby provoking the eyes of his glory, is a terrible 
and revengeful God; wh€>, if you still err in heart, 
and will not walk in bis ways, hath sworn in his 
wrath, that you* shall not enter into his rest; who 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 

. 113 

in his vnw^i jsra/cotieiimiog^rey. and'is reAdy and 
able to id«8tff)y body, and. son t. in !the etwnel yettr 
geance of bell-fir^ . ? . 

5. Consider sin iirtbe evil efiects of it, namely^ 
it brought a eurseupon ihe whole creation for man's 
sake ; whereby the croatures are become defeetiio, 
and pftontiroes xinseryieeable, . nay, hurtful lo you. 
From your sinsicooie* all manner of diseases and 
afflictions that ever befell you* This your sia (vuilil 
it be repented -ef and pardoned) maketh you.jiate&l 
to God — separateth beiweea you and God-'^-causing 
him to withbokl good things from you, and to inflict 
evil upon ycuy. even' in^ this life.*. It defiletb.tte 
whole man,: and every i^enewed act of sin doth 
strengthen the body of sin^ and worketh a decay of 
grace in you, though you ^ regenerate. And if 
it be gross iniquity, if it doth not benumb and sear 
your conscience, yet it will- wound it, aiid break the 
peace thereof, if it be tender^ vexing it as motes do 
your eye, or thorns your feet ; causing terrors and 
doubtings of salvation; God withdrawing his favour 
and loving countenance from you ;and^ if you be 
not in Christ, it will in the end bring upon you 
everlasting dainnatioiu : 

6. Consider the ransom fbf sin, who paid it, and 
what waa paid; consider Christ Jesus who he .was, 
and what he did and suffered to take away your sin. 

>He, the only ' Son of Godj very God, . did veil his 
glory for a time, and left heaiven to .dwell in the 
tabernacle iofihuniaB flesfbj takiug.upon him tbe estate 
of a servaivt. :;He was poorv despised of men, perse- 
cuted from the manger to the cross; made Xo ^\it^ 

d by Google 


tears abundantly; yea, so tormented with the sense 
of God*s wrath for your sin, that for very anguish 
. he did sweat as it were drops of blood. He was 
accused, condemned, spit upon, mocked, buffeted, 
and scourged by wicked men ; made to bear his own 
cross, till for very faintness he could bear it no 
longer ; then he was crucified amongst thieves, dying 
the most accursed death; and, which to him was 
more than all the rest, he, in his human apprehen- 
sion, was forsaken of God, crying out, '^ My God, 
my God, why hast thou forsaken me I 

Now you may be assured, that if the justice of 
God could have been satisfied, and your sin expia- 
ted and done away by a less price, Jesus Christ, 
his only Son, should never have been caused to 
• pour out his soul a sacrifice for your sin. 

This looking (by the eyes of your faith) upon 
Christ whom you have pierced, will at once show 
you the greatness and hatefulness of your sin, which 
required such an infinite ransom ; and the infinite 
love of God in Christ towards you, even when you 
were his enemy, in providing for you a sure remedy, 
which will free you from both the guilt and power 
of this sin. The thoughts hereof will, if any thing 
will, even melt the heart into godly sorrow for sin, 
and withal, give hope (in the use of means) of mercy 
and forgiveness. 

That the former aggravations may be more press- 
ing,' observe these directions:^ 

1. You must consider sin in particulars, one after 
another, for generals leave no impressions. Therefore 
David crieth out of his bloody sin in particular. 

Digitized byVjOOQlC 


3. You must judge the least sin to be damnable, 
until it be pardoned, and repented of in particular, 
if known unto you ; at least in general, if not known. 

3. The greater any sin is, the greater you must 
judge the guilt and punishment to be. 

4. Sins committed long since, unrepented of, and 
the punishments deserved but deferred, are to be 
judged to be as near, lying at the door, and expos- 
ing you to condemnation, as if committed at the 
present; so that you may look for God's hand to be 
upon you this present moment. They, like the blood 
of Abel, or sins of Sodom, cry as loud to God for 
vengeance now, as the first day they were committed; 
nay, louder, because they are aggravated by impeni- 
tency, and by the abuse of God's long-su Bering. 

5. Your humiliation must, in your endeavour, 
proportion your guilt of sin ; the greater the guilt, 
the greater the humiliation. 

Know, therefore, that sins against God, of the first 
table, all things considered, are greater than those 
of the second. 

The more grace hath been offered you by the 
gospel, and the more means you have had to know 
God and his will, the greater is your sin, if you be 
ignorant, impenitent, and disobedient. 

The number of sins, according as they are mul- 
tiplied, do increase the guilt and punishment. 

The more bonds are broken in sinning, as, commit* 
ting it against the law of God, of nature, and nations; 
against conscience, promises, and vows; the greater 
the sin and punishment. 

All these things known and considered, now judge 
yourself; pass a condemnatory sentence against 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


yourself ;- whence ^ill, thr<^ugh the grace of God, 
follow aiBictioA of soul. Kow yon ^ill see that you 
4re base aix)' vile, and that you may justly fear GodV 
judgnieiils ; now yoit will see cause to be grieved, 
ashamed, yea, even confounded in yourself, and to 
conceive -a holy indignation against yourself. 

You will now think thus : Ah'! that I should be 
so foolish, so br^itish, so mad,- to commit this, to 
commit these sins, (-think o£ particulars) to break so 
holy a law, to ofiend, grieve, and provoke so good 
and so great a majesty! So ill to requite him, so 
little to fear him, vile wretth that I am! That I 
should commit not only iins of common fraihy, but 
gross sins, many and oft against knowledge, con- 
science, &c. (but stiil mind particulars.) Jesus 
Christ my Saviour shed his precious blood ^ for me, 
to redeem me from my vain conversation, and do I 
yet again and again transgress, oh miserable man 
ih^t I am! What am I in myself^ athest, but a 
lump of sin and pollutiob, not worthy to be loved, 
but worthy to be destroyed; one that may justly 
look to have my heart hardened, or my conscience 
terrified, and that, if God be not infinitely merciful, 
he should pour upon me all his' plagues. Where- 
fore remembering my doings that they are not good, 
but abominably evil, I loathe myselffor mine abomi- 
nations, and abhor myself, and repent^ as in sack- 
cloth and ashes. 

Now set upon the work- of reformation and of 
reconciliation; general or particular, as you find there 
is need. It is not enough to search out and con- 
sider your ways, nor yet to lament them, if withal 
.you do not turn again unto the Lord, and turn your 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


feet unto his testimonies; «nd withal seek grace and 

The gospel openeth a way, and affordeth means 
to attain both, through the x^oromand.sand promises 
thereof, in the doctrine of faith and repentance. . 

Now therefore bring yourself to the gospel; try 
yourself thereby, first, whether your first faith and 
repentance were -.sincere: then set upon reforming, 
and getting pardon of particular and later offences. 

But learn to put a difference between the com- 
mands of the gospel and of the law. The law exacteth 
absolute obedience; the gracious gospel doth, through 
Cbri&t, accept of the truth of faith and repentance, 
so that there be an endeavour after their perfection. 

It would be too long to show you at large the 
signs of unfeigned faith. and repentance, I will, for 
the present, only say this: 

Have you been truly humbled for sin? and 
through the promises and commandments of the 
gospel, whicli biddetb you believe, have you con- 
ceived hope of mercy, relying on Christ for it? And 
thereupon have had a true change in your whole 
man, so that you make God your utmost end, and 
receive the Lord Jesus as your only Saviour; and, 
out of hatred of sin, and love to Christ and his ways, 
have a will in all things to live honestly, and to 
keep always a good conscience towards God and 
man ; desiring the sincere milk of the word, to grow 
by it ; loving the brethren ; desiring and delighting 
in communion with them ? Then you may be con- 
fident that your first faith, repentance, and new 
obedience were sound. 

If upon trial you find that they were not sound. 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


then you must begin now to repent and believe ; it 
is not yet too late. 

Concerning reformation and obtaining of pardon 
and power of your particular sins, do thus : 

1. Consider the commandment which biddeth 
you to repent and amend. 

2. Consider the commandment which biddeth 
you to come unto Christ, when you are weary and 
heavy laden with your sin, believing that through 
him they shall be pardoned and subdued. To this end, 

3. Consider that Christ hath fully satisfied for 
such and such a sin, yea, for all sin; and that you 
have many promises of grace and forgiveness; yea, 
a promise that God will give you grace to. believe 
in him, that you may have your sins forgiven. 

4. Consider that there is virtue and power in 
Christ's death and resurrection, applied by faith, 
through his Holy Spirit, for the mortifying the old 
man of sin, and quickening the new man in grace; 
as well as merit to take away the guilt and punish- 
ment of your sin. 

5. Improve this power of Christ in you unto an 
actual breaking off your sins, and living according to 
the will of Christ, which is done by mortifying that 
old man of sin, and by strengthening the new and 
inner man of grace. . 

In mortifying your sin, do thus : 

1. Take all your sins, especially your bosom sins, 
those to which the disposition of your nature, and 
condition of your place, doth most incline you, your 
strongest and most prevailing sins, and with them 
the body of corruption in you, the original and 
fountain of sin; smite at them, strike at the very 

Digitized by CjOOQIC 


root, arraign them, condemn them in yourseIf,^bring 
them to the cross of Christ, and naii them thereunto; 
that is, believe that, not only in respect of their 
guilt, but also of their reigning power (through 
faith in his precious sacrifice and intercession) they 
shall be crucified with him, dead, and buried, as is 
lively signified to you in your baptism. When 
you see that your old man is crucified .with Christ, 
that the body of sin may be destroyed, you will 
take courage against sin, and will refuse to serve it, 
since by Christ you are freed from the dominion of it* 
When you thus by faith put on the Lord Jesus 
Christ, you shall not fulfil the lusts of the flesh. 

2. Grieve heartily for your sins; conceive deadly 
hatred against them, and displeasure against your- 
self for them. These, like a corrosive, will eat out 
the life and power of sin. 

3. Make no provision for the flesh, to fulfil the 
lusts of it; but be sober in the use of all worldly 
things; this, by little and little, will starve sin. 

4. Avoid all objects and occasions of sin; yea, 
abstain from the appearance of it; this will disarm sin. 

5. When you feel any motion to sin, whether it 
arise from within, or come from without, resist it 
speedily and earnestly, by the sword of the Spirit, 
the word of God, as your Saviour did, and as Joseph 
did; for which cause it must dwell plentifully in you. 
Thus you shall kill sin. 

That you may strengthen the inner man by the 
Spirit, whereby you may not only mortify the deeds 
of the flesh, but bring forth the fruits of the Spirit, 
do thus: 

1,^ Apply Christ, risen from the ^ead, to your- 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


self' particularly:; believing that God by the same 
power quickeiieth you, and raiseth y<m together 
with Christ; to walk in newness of life; re<;koQing 
yourself now to be alive unto God; being dead unto 
sin, and becoma the servant of righteousness. This 
believing in Christ,^ embracing and relying upon him, 
as set forth in the precious promises of the gospel, 
doth draw virtue from > Christ into your heart, and 
doth more and more incorporate y^u into him; and 
by it, he, by his Spirit, dwelleth in you, whereby of 
his Kfe and grace, you receive life and grace; and so 
you are made partaker of the divine nature, shunning 
the corruption which is in the world through lust. 

2. Aftect your heart with joy unspeakable, and 
with peace in believing, considering that you are 
justified through our Lord Jesus Christ. This joy 
of the Lord, as a cordial, will eicceddingly strengthen 
grace in < the inner man. 

3. Take h«ed of quenching or grieving the 
Spirit, but nourish it by the frequent use of holy 
meditation, prayer, hearing and reading the word, 
receiving the sacrament, by a Christian communion 
with such as fear God, and by attending to the 
motions of the Spirit of God; which you shall know 
to be from it, when the thing whereunto it moveth 
is, both for matter and circumstance, according to 
the Scripture, the word of the Spirit. This is to 
be led of the Spirit; and this will be to walk in the 
i^irit, and then you shall not fulfil the lusts of the 

There remaineth yet one principal work wherein 
consisteth the chief business of the day of your fast, 
for which all hitherto £^oken roaketh way, and by 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


which, with the former means, you may attain to 
true reformation of yourself, and reconciliation with 
God; which is invocation and earnest prayer to God, 
in the name of Christ, through the Holy Ghost : in 
particular, large and hearty confessions and com* 
plaints against yourself for your sins, asking forgive- 
ness, making known your holy resolutions, asking 
grace, and giving thanks that God is at peace with 
you, having given Christ for you and to you, (upon 
your believing in him) and that he hath given you 
a mind to know him and the power of his resurrec- 
tion; with other first-fruits of the Spirit, which is the 
earnest of your inheritance. 

Let this solemn and more than ordinary seeking 
of God by prayer alone, be twice, at least, in the 
day of your fast, besides your ordinary prayers in 
the morning and evening; and having thus obtained 
peace with God, through faith in Christ Jesus, you 
may, nay ought to pray for the good, or against the 
evil, which was the occasion of the fast. 

But in praying you must in fervency of spirit cry 
mightily; striving and wrestling in prayer. 

The extraordinary burnt-oflFerings and sin-offer- 
ings, besides the sin-offering of the atonement, to be 
offered on the solemn day of the fast under the ]aw 
(which, as I told you, in the morality of it, is the 
standaid of religious fasts) doth showj that a fast 
roust be kept in manner as hath been said; for 
hereby we prepare and sanctify ourselves, and seek 
to God in Christ; hereby we by faith lay hold on 
Christ, the only true sacrifice for sin; and hereby 
we do by him 'draw nigh to God, and in token of 
thankfulness do give ourselves to be a whole and 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which 
is our reasonable service. 

For your greater and more thorough humbling 
of yourself, and farther exercise of your faith in 
God, and love to your brethren and church of God, 
something yet is to be added. 

You must represent to your thoughts also the 
sins and evils that are already upon, or hanging over 
the head of your family and nearest friends, and of 
the town, country, or kingdom where you live, 
together with their several aggravations; lay them 
to heart; considering that they by sinning do dis- 
honour God your Father, and do bring evil upon 
the souls and bodies of those whom you should love 
as well- as yourself: and it is a thousand to one but 
that you are involved in their sins, and become 
accessary, if not by example, counsel, permission, 
or concealment, yet in not grieving for them, in not 
hating them, and in not confessing and disclaiming 
them sufficiently before God. These also bring 
common judgments upon church and state, which 
you should prefer before your own particular interest, 
and wherein you may expect to share a part. 

You must therefore affect your heart with these 
thoughts, and mourn for your own first, and then 
for the abominations of your family, town, country, 
and kingdom. For the sins of princes and nobles, 
for the sins of ministers and people. And not only 
for present sins of the land, but for the sins long 
since committed, whereof it hath not yet repented. 
Rivers of waters should run down from your eyes, at 
least sighs and groans should rise from your h<»art, 
because others as well as yourself have foigotten 

Digitized by CjOOQIC 



God's law, and have exposed themselves to his de«- 
stroying judgroents. Do all this so, that yoa may 
pour out your heeirt like water to the Lord in their 

This is' to stand in the breach ; the prayer of a 
righteous man availeth much, if it be fervent, though 
he have infirmities. If it should not take good ef- 
fect for others, yet your tears and sighs shall do good 
to yourself: it causeth you to have God's seat in 
your forehead; you are marked for mercy. God 
will take you from the evil to come, or will make a 
way for you to escape, or will turn the hearts of your 
enemies to you ; or, if you smart under the common 
judgment, it shall be sanctified to you : and if you 
perish bodily, yet, when others that cannot live, and 
are afraid to die, ^re at their wits' end, you s^hall be 
able, in the consciousness of your godly sorrow for 
your own and others' sins, to welcome death as a 
messenger of good tidings, and as a gate to everlast- 
ing happiness. 

If it be a public fast, all these things before-^men- 
tioned are to be done alone, both before and after 
the public exercises: at which time you must join in 
public hearing the word read and preached, and in 
prayer with more than ordinary attention and fer- 

If you fast with your family, or with some few, 
let convenient times be spent in reading the word of 
God, or some good book, or sermons, which maybe 
fit to direct and quicken you for the present work ; 
also in fervent prayer : the other time alone> let it 
be spent as I have shown before. 

If some public or necessary occasion, such as you 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


could not well foresee or preTont, when you made 
choice of your day of private fast, happen to in- 
terrupt you, I judge that you may attend those 
occasions, notwithstanding your fast. But do it 
thus : if they may be despatched with little ado, then 
despatch them, and after continue your fast ; but if 
you cannot, I think that you had better be humbled 
that you were hindered, break off your fast, and set 
some other day apart instead thereof; even as when 
a man is necessarily hindered in his vow. 

The benefits of religious fasting. 

The benefit that will accrue to you by religious 
fasting, will be motive enough to a frequent use of 
it, as there shall be cause. 

1. It was never read or heard of, that a fast was 
kept in truth, according to the former directions from 
the word, but it either obtained the particular bless- 
ing for which it was kept, or at least a better, to him 
that fasted. Judges xx. 26—35. 1 Sam. vii. 6^ 
10. Ezra viii. 23. 2 Chron. xx. 3 — 22. Jonah 
iii. 7 — 10. 

2. And besides those advantages, thus fasting 
will put the soul into such good frame, into such a 
habit of spiritual-mindedness, that (as when against 
some special entertainment, a day hath been spent 
in searching every corner in a house, to wash and 
cleanse it) it will be kept clean with common sweep- 
ing a long time after. 

I do acknowledge that some have fasted, and God 
hath not regarded it; yea, he telleth some before- 
hand, that ** if they fast, he will not hear their cry." 

't these were such who *^ fasted not to God," 
r only sought themselves; they would ^^ not 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


hearken to his word ;" there was no putting away of 
sin, or loosing the bands of wickedness, &c. no mor- 
tification of sin, no renewing their covenant with 
God. Now, unless we do join the inward with the 
outward, ** we may fast, but the Lord seeth it not, 
we may afflict ourselves, but he taketh no notice ; 
we may cry and howl, but cannot make our voice to 
be heard on high." But when God seeth the 
works of them that fast, that turn from their evil 
way ; yea, that they strive to turn and seek him 
with all their heart, then he will turn to them ; his 
bowels of compassion doth yearn towards them; and 
" I will have mercy on them, saith the Lord." 

After the time of the fast is ended, eat and drink 
but moderately. For, if you then over-indulge 
yourself, it will put your body and soul both out of 

Secondly, Your fast being ended, hold the/ 
strength which you got that day as much as you 
can; keep your interest and holy acquaintance which 
you have obtained with God, and the holy exercises 
of religion. Though you have given over the ex- 
ercises of the day, yet unloose not the bent of your 
care and affections against sin, and for God. It is 
a corruption of our natute, and it is a policy of Satan 
to help it forward, that, like some unwise warriors, 
when they have gotten victory over their enemies, 
we grow full of presumption and security, by which 
the enemy taketh advantage to recollect his forces, 
and coming upon us unlocked for giveth us the foil, 
if not the overthrow. We are too apt, after a day 
of humiliation, to fall into a kind of remissness, as if 
then we had gotten the mastery ; whereas, if Satan 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


fly from U8, if sin be weakened in us, it is but fw a 
season, and but in part; and, especially if we stand 
not upon our watch, Satan will take occasion to 
return, and sin will revive in us. 

I will add a few cautions touching this excellent 
but neglected duty of fasting. 

1. The body, although it must be kept under, 
yet it must not be destroyed with fasting. It must 
hot be so weakened as to be disabled to perform the 
works of your ordinary calling. 

2. In private fasts, you must not be open, but as 
private as conveniently you may. 

3. Separate not the inward from the outward 
work in fasting. 

4. Think not to merit by your fasting, as papists do. 

5. Presume not that presently upon the work 
done, God must grant every petition, as hypocrites 
do, that say to him, " We have fasted, and thou 
dost not regard it." You may and must expect a 
gracious hearing upon your unfeigned humiliation; 
but as for when and how, you must wait patiently : 
faith secureth you of good success, but neither 
prescribeth unto God how, nor yet doth it make 
haste; but waiteth his time, when in his wisdom he 
shall judge it most seasonable. 


Of the LortTs Day^ or Christian Sabbath. 

On the Sabbath, or Lord's day, you must re- 
member to keep it holy, according to the command- 
Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


ment) E^cod. xx. 8 — 11. xxxv. 2, 3. For this 
cause consider^ 

(1.) The divine institution of the Lord's day, or 
Christian Sabbath, 

First) Put a difference between this and the other 
six dayS) even as you put a difference between the 
bread and wine iu the sacrament, and that which is 
for conomon use. And that because it is set apart 
for holy use, by divine institution. For, as the 
seventh day, fronj the beginning cf the creation, 
UjQtil the day of Christ's blessed resurrection, so our 
Lord's day, which is the day of the resurrection, is 
by divine institution moral. The commandment to 
keep a holy rest upon the seventh day, after the six 
days of work (which is the substance of the fourth 
commandment) remaineth the same: and this Adam 
(no doubt by the instinct of uncorrupted ilature> 
which desireth a time for God's honour and solemn 
worship) he knowing that God finished the creation 
in six days, and rested on the seventh, would have 
observed; yet it was requisite that the particular day 
should be by institution, for natural reason could not 
qertaioly tell him which day. The Lord of the 
Sabbath therefore limited it to the seventh from the 
creation, until Christ's resurrection, and then re- 
moved it to the day we keep, which is the first. 

Now it appears, that it was the will of our Lord 
and Saviour Christ, that we. should, sinc^ his resur- 
rection, keep, for our Sabbath, that first day of the 
week; forasmuch as he arose on that day, and 
appeared divers times on this our Lord's day to his 
disciples before his ascension: and did on this day, 
being the day of Pentecost, fill his disciples with the 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


gifts of the Holy Ghost, they being assembled 
together; all which giveth a pre-eminence to this 
day, and a probability to the point. 

But inasmuch as the apostles, who followed 
Christ, and delivered nothing but what they re- 
ceived from Christ, did observe this day as a sab- 
bath, what can this argue but a divine institution of 
this day? The apostle Paul might have chosen any 
other day for the people to assemble to hear the 
word, and receive the sacrament: but they assembled 
to receive the sacrament, and to hear the word, upon 
the first day of the week, which is our Lord's day. 
Now the approved practice of the apostles, and of 
the church with them, recorded in scripture, carrieth 
with it the force of a precept. 

Moreover, the Spirit of Godhonoureth this day 
with the title of the Lord's day, as he doth the 
communion with the title of the Supper of the Lord. 
What doth this argue but as they both have re- 
ference to Christ, so they are both appointed by 
Christ? The Spirit of Christ knew the mind of 
Christ, who thus named this day. 

(2.) Directions for- the religious observance of the 
Lord's day. 

Secondly, Being convinced of the holiness of 
this day (the better to keep it holy when it cometh) 
you must, 

L On the week day before the sabbath, or Lord's 
day, remember it, to the end that none of your 
worldly business be left undone, or put off till then; 
especially upon Saturday, you must prepare for it. 
Then you must put an end to the works of your 
calling; and do whatsoever may be well done before* 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


hand, to prevent bodily labour even in your necessaty 
actions, that, when the day cometh, you may have 
less occasion of worldly thoughts, less incumbrance 
and distractions; and may be more free, both in body 
and mind, for spiritual exercises. 

2. You yourself, and, as much as in you lieth, 
all under your authority, must rest upon this day, 
the space of the whole day of four-and-twenty hours, 
from all manner of works, except those which have 
true reference to the present day's works of piety, 
mercy, and true necessity, not doing your own ways, 
nor finding your own pleasures, nor speaking your 
own words. 

3. It is not enough that you observe this day as 
a rest, but you must keep a holy rest. Which that 
you may do, you must, on your awaking in the 
morning, make a difference between it and other 
days, not thinking on any worldly business more 
than will serve for a general providence, to preserve 
you from great hurt or loss. Both in your lying 
awake, and rising in the morning, make use of the 
former directions, showing you how to awake and 
rise with God. Rise early, if it will consist with 
your health, and not hinder your fitness for spiritual 
exercises through drowsiness afterward, that you 
may show forth God*s loving-kindness in the morn- 
ing. Double your devotions on the Lord's day, as 
the Jews did their morning and evening sacrifice on 
the sabbath day. Prepare yourself for the public 
holy services by reading, by meditation, and by 
putting away all filthiness; that is, repenting of 
every sin, and casting away the superfluity of. 
naughtiness; that is, let no sin be allowed or suffered 

F 3 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


to reign in you. Then pray for yourself, and for 
the minister, that God would give him a mouth to 
speak, and you a heart to hear, as you both ought 
to do. All this, before you shall assemble for public 
worship. Being thus prepared, bring your family 
with you to the church. Join with the minister and 
congregation. Set yourself as in the special presence 
of God, following the example of good Cornelius, 
with all reverence attending and consenting; saying 
Amen with understanding, faith, and aiFection, to 
the prayers uttered by the minister; believing and 
obeying, whatsoever is by him commanded you from 
God. Afterward, by meditation, and by conference; 
and if you have opportunity, by repetitions, call to 
mind, and wisely and firmly lay up in your heart 
what yon have learned. The like care must be had 
before, at, and after, the evening exercise. 

The Nature and Design of Baptism, and the 
Lord's Supper, &c. 

1. If baptism be administeied, stay, and attend 
to it, (1.) To honour that holy ordinance with the 
greater solemnity. (2.) And in charity to the 
persons to be baptized, joining with the congregation 
in hearty prayer for them, and in a joyful receiving 
them into the communion of the visible church. 
(3.) Also in respect of yourself. For hereby you 
may call to mind your own baptism, in which you 
did put on Christ, which also doth lively represent 
the death, burial, and resurrection of Christ, together 
with your crucifying the affections and lusts, being 
dead and buried with him unto sin, and rising with 
him to newness of life, and to hope of glory; under- 
standing clearly that the blood and Spirit of Christ, 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


signified by water, doth cleanse you from the guilt 
and dominion of sin to your justification and sancti- 
fication. Remembering, moreover, that, by way of 
sealing, your baptism did in particular exhibit and 
apply to you that believe, Christ with all the benefits 
of the covenant of grace ratified in his blood: mind- 
ing you also of this, that it doth not only seal God's 
promises of forgiveness, grace, and salvation to you; 
but that also it sealeth and bindeth you to the 
performance of your promise, and vow of faith and 
obedience, which is the branch of the covenant to 
•be performed, according as was professed, on your 

Recourse to your baptism is an excellent strength- 
ener of your weak faith, and an occasion of renewing 
of your vow, you having broken it: and of resisting 
temptations, considering that they are against your 
promise and vow in baptism. 

Directions for the right attendance on the Lord's 

2. When there is a communion, receive it as oft 
as, without interrupting the order of the church, 
you may. But be careful to receive it worthily. 

It is not enough that you be born within the 
covenant, and that you have been baptized ; but you 
must have knowledge of the nature of the sacrament 
of^he Lord's supper; both that it is of divine insti- 
tution, and that it is a sign and seal of the righteous- 
ness of faith, signifying to you by the breaking and 
giving of the bread, and by pouring out and deliver- 
ing the wine, the meritorious sacrifice of the Lord 
Jesus Christ, in whom the covenant of grace is. 
established ; presenting also, and sealing vxivXo ^^vx^ 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


by the elements of bread and wine, the very body 
and blood of Christ, with all the benefits of the new 
covenant, of which you receive indeed livery and 
seizin in the act of receiving by faith, whereby you 
also grow into a nearer union with Christ your head, 
and communion with all his members your brethren. 

Besides, there must be a special preparation by 
examining yourself, and renewing your peace with 
God before you receive, according to the directions 
before given, Chap, V. sect. 2. Also make your 
peace, at least be at peace, and in charity with your 
neighbour, by a hearty acknowledging your fault so 
far as is fit, and making recompense, if you have 
done him wrong; and by forgiving, and forbearing 
revenge, if he hath done you wrong. 

In the act of administering and receiving, join in 
confession and prayers, and attend to the actions of 
the minister when he breaketh the bread, poureth 
out the wine, and by blessing setteth it apart for 
holy use; by faith behold Christ, in representation, 
wounded, bleeding, and crucified before your eyes 
for you; looking upon him whom your sins con- 
demned and pierced to the death, rather than his 
accusers, and those which nailed him to the cross; 
who, though malicious, were but instruments of that 
punishment which God, with other tokens of his 
wrath, did execute upon him (though in himself a 
Lamb without spot) justly for your sin, he being 
your surety. 

This looking upon him. whom you have pierced, 
should partly dissolve you into a holy grief for sin : 
but chiefly (considering that by this his passion he 
hath made full satisfaction for you, and also seeing 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


what blessings God and Christ himself, by the hand 
of his minister, giving Christ's body and blood 
sacramentally, do signify and seal unto you,) it 
should raise your heart to a holy admiration of the 
love of God and of Christ, and it should excite you, 
in the very act of taking the bread and wine, to a 
reverend and thankful receiving of this his body and 
blood by faith, discerning the Lord's body ; gather- 
ing assurance hereby that now all enmity between 
God and you is done away, if you are believers 
indeed ; and that you by this, as by spiritual food 
for life, shall grow up in him, with the rest of his 
mystical body, unto everlasting life* 

1. After that you have received (until you be to 
join in public praise and prayers) affect your heart 
with joy and thankfulness in the assurance of the 
pardon of all your sins, and of salvation by Christ ; 
and that more than if you, being a bankrupt, should 
receive an acquittance sealed of the release of all 
your debts, and with it a will and testament wherein 
you should have a legacy of no less than a kingdom, 
sealed with such a seal as giveth clear proof of the 
fidelity, ability, and death of the testator; or than if, 
having been a traitor, you shall receive a free and 
full pardon from the king, sealed with his own seal, 
together with an assurance that he hath adopted you 
to be his child, to be married to his son, the heir of 
the crown. This is your case, when by faith you 
receive the bread and wine, the body and blood of 
the Lord. Think thus, therefore, with joy and re- 
joicing in God : Oh ! how happy am I in Christ my 
Saviour ! God, who hath given him to death for 
me, and also given him to me, how shall V\e t\oX vj\\>a 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


him freely give me all things? Even whatsoever 
may pertain to life, godliness, and glory? Who 
shall lay any thing to my charge ? Who, or what 
can separate me from the love of Christ? &c. 

2. Resolve withal upon a constant -and an un- 
feigned endeavour to perform all duties becoming 
one thus acquitted, thus redeemed, pardoned, and 
advanced; and this in token of thankfulness; even 
to keep the covenant required to be performed on 
your part; undoubtedly expecting whatever God 
hath covenanted and sealed on his part. 

3. Join in public praise and prayer heartily, and 
in a liberal contribution to the poor, if there be a 

4. After the sacrament, if you feel your faith 
strengthened, and your soul comforted, nourish it 
with all thankfulness. 

If not, yet, if your conscience can witness that 
you endeavoured to prepare as you ought, and to 
rceeive as you ought, be not discouraged, but wait 
for strength and comfort in due time. We do not 
always feel the benefit of bodily food presently, but 
stirring of humours and sense of disease is sometimes 
rather occasioned; yet in the end being well digested, 
it strengtheneth; so it is often with spiritual food, 
corruption may stir, and temptations may arise, more 
upon the receiving than before; especially since 
Satan, if it be but to vex a tender-hearted Christian, 
will hereupon take occasion to tempt with more 
violence: but if you resist these, and stand resolved 
to obey, and to rely upon God's mercy in Christ, 
this is rather a sign of receiving worthily; so long 
as your desires and resolutions are strengthened, 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


and you thereby are made more carefully to stand 
upon your watch. Endeavour in this case to digest 
this spiritual food by farther meditation, improving 
that strength you have, praying for more strength, 
remembering the commandment, which biddeth you 
to be strong; and you shall be strengthened. 

5. If you find yourself worse indeed, or do feel 
God's heavy hand in a special manner upon you, 
following upon your receiving, and your conscience 
can witness truly that you came not prepared, or 
that you did wilfully and carelessly fnil in such or 
such a particular in receiving, it is evident you did 
receive unwoithily. In which case you must heartily 
bewail your sin, confess it to God; ask, and believe 
that he will pardon it, through Christ Jesus, upon 
your sincere faith and repentance, and take heed that 
you offend not in that kind another time. 

(3.) Upon the Lord's day you must likewise be 
ready to visit and relieve the distressed. 

Take some time this day to look into your past 
life, and chiefly to your walking with God the last 
week, as being freshest in memory, and be sure to 
let no old scores of sin remain between God and you. 
Last of all, on every opportunity, take good time 
to consider God's works; what they are in themselves, 
what they are against the wicked, what they are to 
the church, and to yourself and to yours. And, in 
particular, take occasion from the day itself, to think 
fruitfully of the creation, of your redemption, sancti- 
fication, and of your eternal rest and glory to come. 
For God, in his holy wisdom, hath set such a divine 
mark upon this our Lord's day, that at once it doth 
mind us of the greatest works'of God, \v\m\\ ^vxWt 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


conduce to his glory, or his church's good. As, of 
the creation of the world in six days, he rested the 
seventh, which specially is attributed to the Father. 
And of man's redemption by Christ, of whose resur- 
rection this day is a remembrance, which is specially 
attributed to the Son. Also of our sanctification 
by the Spirit, for that the observance of the sabbath 
is a sign and means of holiness, which work is spe- 
cially attributed to the Holy Ghost. Lastly, of 
your and the church's glorification, which shall be 
the joint work of the blessed Trinity, when we shall 
cease from all our works, and shall rest, and be 
glorious with the same glory which our head Christ 
hath with the Father, to whom be glory for ever 
and ever. Amen. Do all these with delight; raising 
up yourself hereby to a greater measure* of holiness 
and heavenly mindedness. 

(4.) Motives to keep holy the Lord's day. 

Do all this the rather, because there is not a 
clearer sign to distinguish you from one that is pro- 
fane, than this, of conscientiously keeping holy the 
Lord's day. Neither is there any ordinary means 
of gaining strength and growth of grace in the in- 
ward man like this, of due observing the sabbath. 
For this is God's great mart or fair-day for the 
soul, on which you may buy of Christ wine, milk, 
bread, marrow and fatness, gold, white raiment, 
eye salve, — even all things which are necessary, and 
which will satisfy, and cause the soul to live. It is 
the special day of proclaiming and sealing of pardons 
to penitent sinners. It is God's special day of 
publishing and sealing your patent of eternal life. 
It is a blessed day, sanctified for all these blessed 

* r ' Digitized by VjOOQIC 


Now, lest this so strict observance of the Lord's 
day in spending the whole day in holy meditation, 
holy exercises, and works of mercy, excepting only 
necessary repasts, should be thought, as it is by 
some, to be merely Jewish, or only the private 
opinion of some zealots, more nice than wise, — know, 
that as the fourth commandment is of moral obliga- 
tion, there is the same reason for the strict observance 
of it, as any other divine precept, as against idolatry, 
murder, fornication, &c. And the taking away of 
the morality of the fourth commandment, and un- 
loosing the conscience from the immediate bonds of 
God's command to observe a day for his solemn 
Worship, doth overthrow true religion, and the power 
of godliness, and opens a wide gap to atheism, pro- 
faneness, and all licentiousness; as daily experience 
proves in those persons and places, by whom, and 
where, the Lord's day is not holily and duly observed. 


Directions how to End the Day with God. 

When you have walked with God from morning 
until night, whether on a common day, a day of 
fasting, or on the Lord's day, according to the for- 
mer directions, it remaineth that you conclude the 
day well, when you would give yourself to rest at 
night. Wherefore, 

. First, Look back and take a strict view of your 
whole carriage that day past. Reform 'wYvat ^om 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


6nd amUs; and rejoicei or be grieved^ a$ you 6nd 
you have dooe well or ill, a$ you have advanced or 
declined in grace that day. 

Secondly, Since you cannot sleep in safety, if 
God, who is your keeper, do. not wake, and watch 
for you; and though you have God to watch when 
you sleep, you cannot be safe, if he that watcheth 
be your enemy ; wherefore it is very convenient, that 
at night, you not only conclude the day with your 
family, by reading some scripture, and by prayer, but 
you must alone renew and confirm your peace with 
God by faith and prayer, and with like preparations 
thereto, as you received directions for the morning: 
commending and committing yourself to God's tuition 
by prayer, with thanksgiving, before you go to bed. 
Then shall you lie down in safety. 

All this being done, yet while you are putting off 
your apparel, when you are lying down, and when 
you are in bed before you sleep, it is good that you 
commune with your own heart. If other good and 
fit meditations ofier not themselves, some of these 
will be seasonable: 

1. When you see yourself without your apparel, 
consider what you were at your birth, and what you 
shall be at your death, when you put of this earthly 
tabernacle, (if not in the meantime, as concerning 
your outward estates):— —how that you brought no- 
thing into this world, nor shall carry any thing out : 
naked you came from your mother's womb, and na- 
ked shall you return. This will be an excellent 
means to give you sweet content in any thing 'you 
have, though never so little; and in the loss of what 
you have had, though never so much. 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


2. When you lie down, you may think of lying 
down io your winding-sheet, and in your grave. 
For besides that sleep, 1 Cor xi, 30. and the bed 
do aptly resemble death and the grave, who knoweth, 
when he sleepeth, that ever he shall awake again 
to this life? 

3. You may think thus also: If the sun must not 
go down upon my wrath, lest it become hatred, and 
so be worse ere morning, then it is not safe for me 
to lie down in the allowance of any sin, lest I sleep 
not only the sleep of natural death, but of that death 
which is eternal; for who knoweth what a night will 
bring forth ? Now, it is a high point of holy wisdom, 
upon all opportunities, to think of, and to prepare for, 
your latter end. 

4. Consider, likewise, that if you walk with God 
in uprightness, your death unto you is but to fall 
into a sweet sleep, an entering into rest, a resting 
on your bed for a night, until the glorious morning 
of your happy resurrection. 

5. If possibly you can, fall asleep with some 
heavenly meditation. Then will your sleep be more 
sweet, and more secure; your dreams fewer, or more 
comfortable; your head will be fuller of good thoughts; ' 
and your heart will be in a better frame when you 
awake, whether in the night, or in the morning. 

• Thirdly, Being thus prepared to sleep, you should 
sleep only so much as the present state of your body 
requireth; you must not be like the sluggard, to love 
sleep; neither must you sleep too much: for if you 
do, that, which being taken in its due measure, is a 
restorer of vigour and strength to your body, and a 
quickener of the spirits, will make the &^\t\u divil^^ 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


the brain sottish, and the whole body inactive and 
unhealthy : and that which God hath ordained for a 
furtherance, through your sin, shall become an 
enemy to your bodily and spiritual welfare. Thus 
much of walking with God in all things, at all times. 

How to walk with God Alone. 

I. Rules co7icerning Soliitule. 

There is no time wherein you will not be either 
alone or in company, in either of which you must 
walk in all well-pleasing, as in the sight of God. 

1. Affect not too much solitude. Be not alone 
except you have just cause; namely, when you se- 
parate yourself for holy duties, and when your need- 
ful occasions do withdraw you from society, for, in 
other cases, ^^ two are better than one," saith Solo- 
mon, and "wo be to him that is alone." 

2. When you are alone, you must be very watch- 
ful, and stand upon your guard, lest you fall into 
manifold temptations of the devil: for solitariness is 
Satan's opportunity, which he will not lose, as 
manifold examples in scripture, and our daily expe- 
rience do witness. Wherefore, you must have a 
ready eye to observe, and a heart ready bent to re- 
sist, all his assaults. And it will now th^ more 
concern you to keep close to God, and not lose his 
company, that through the weapons of your Chris- 

Digitized by CjOOQIC 


tian warfare, you may, by the power of God's might, 
quit yourself, and stand fast. 

3. Take special heed, lest, when you be alone, 
you yourself conceive, devise, or indulge any evil, 
to which your nature is then most prone. 

And beware, in particular, lest you commit alone, 
by yourself, contemplative wickedness; which is, 
when by feeding your fancy, and pleasing yourself, 
in covetous, lustful, revengeful, ambitious, or other 
wicked thoughts, you act that in your mind and 
fancy, which, either for fear or shame, you dare not, 
or for want of opportunity or means, you cannot act 

4. When you are alone, be sure that you are well 
and fully exercised about something that is good, 
either in the works of your caUiug, or in reading, or 
in holy meditation or prayer. For whensoever Satan 
doth find you idle, and out of employment in some 
or other of those works which God hath appointed, 
he will take that as an opportunity to use you for 
himself, and to employ you in some of his works. 
But if you keep always in your place, and to some 
or other good work of your place, you are under 
God's special protection, as the bird in the law was, 
while she sat upon her eggs or young ones, keeping 
her own nest, in which case no man might hurt her. 

I have already showed how you should behave 
yourself as in God's sight, both in prayer, and in the 
works of your calling, I will say something for your 
direction concerning reading and meditation. 

d by Google 


II. Of Reading. 

Besides your set times of reading the holy scrip- 
tures, you will do well to gain some time from your 
vacant hoursj that you may read in God's book, and 
in the good books of men. 

How to read profitably. 

1. When you read any part of the word of God, 
you must put a difference between it and the best 
writings of men, preferring it far before them. To 
this end, (1.) Consider it in its properties and ex- 
cellencies. No word is of like absolute authority, 
holiness, truth, wisdom, power, and eternity. (2.) 
Consider this word in its ends and good effects. 
No book^aimeth at God's glory, and the salvation 
of man's soul, like this; none concemeth you like to 
this. It discovereth your misery by sin, together 
with the perfect remedy. It proposeth perfect 
happiness unto you, affording means to work it out 
in you, and for you. It is mighty, through God, 
to prepare you for grace. It is the immortal seed 
to beget you unto Christ. It is the milk and 
stronger meat to nourish you up in Christ. It is 
the only soul physic, (through Christ Jesus) to re- 
cover you, and to free you of all spiritual evils. 
By it Christ giveth spiritual sight to the blind, 
hearing to the deaf, speech to the dumb, strength to 
the weak, health to the sick, yea, by it he doth cast 
out devils, and raise men from the death of sin, 
through faith, as certainly as he did all those 
things for the bodies of men by the word of his 
power, while he lived on the earth. This book of 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


Ood doth contain those many rich legacies, be* 
queathed to you in that last will and testament of 
God, sealed with the blood of Jesus Christ our 
Lord. It is the magna charta^ and statute-book 
of the kingdom of heaven. It is the book of privi- 
leges and immunities of God's children. It is the 
word of grace, '^ which is able to build you up, and 
to give you an inheritance amongst all them that are 
sanctified." For, it will make you wise to salvation, 
through faith in Christ Jesus, making you perfect, 
thoroughly furnished unto all good works. 

Whenever, therefore, you hear this wordj)reached, 
and when at any time you read it, you must receive 
it not as the word of man, but, as it is in truth, the 
word of God: then it will work eflFectually in you 
that believe. 

2. When you read this word, lift up the heart in 
prayer to God for the spirit of understanding and 
wisdom, that your mind may be more and more en- 
lightened, and your heart more and more strength- 
ened with grace by it. For this word is spiritual, 
containing the great counsels of God for man's sal- 
vation, and which is as a book sealed up, in respect 
of discovery of the things of God in it, to all that 
have not the help of God's Spirit; so that none can 
know the inward and spiritual meaning thereof, 
powerfully and savingly, but by the Spirit of God. 

3. Read the word with a hunger and thirst after 
knowledge, and growth. of grace by it; with a reverent, 
humble, teachable, and honest heart; believing all 
that you read; trembling at the threatenings and 
judgments against sinners; rejoicing in the promke^ 
made unto, and the £ivours bestowed upon the i^em- 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


tent and the godly; willing and resolving to obey 
all the commandments. 

Thus if you read, blessed shall you be in your 
reading, and blessed shall you be in your deed. 

Who must read the scriptures. 

The holy scriptures are thus to be read of all, of 
every sort and condition, and of each sex; for all are 
commanded to search the scriptures: as well the laity 
as the clergy; women as well as men; young as well 
as old; all sorts of all nations. For though the 
Spirit of God is able to work conversion and holi- 
ness immediately without the word, as he doth in 
those infants that are saved, yet, in adult persons 
the Holy Ghost will not, where the word may be 
had, work without it as his in.^trument; using it as 
the hammer, plough, seed, fire, water, sword,* or as 
any other instrument, to pull down, build up, plant, 
purge, or cleanse, the souls of men. For it is by 
the word, both read and preached, that Christ doth 
sanctify all that are his, that he may present them 
to himself, and so to his Father, without spot or 
wrinkle, a church most glorious. 

And whereas it is most true, that those who are 
unlearned and unstable do wrest not only hard 
scriptures, but all others also, to their destruction; 
yet let not this (as papists would infer) cause you to 
forbear to read; any more than, because many sur- 
feit and are drunk by the best meats and drinks, 
you forbear to eat and drink. 

To prevent misunderstanding and wresting of 
scriptures to your hurt, do thus: (1.) Get and 

* Thej are Scripture metaphors. 

Digitized by CjOOQ iC 


cherish an humble and honest heart, resolved to obey 
what you know to be God's will: '^ If any man will 
do his will," saith Christ, " he shall know of the 
doctrine, whether it be of God." (2.) Get a clear 
knowledge of the first principles of the Christian reli- 
gion, and believe them steadfastly. And endeavour 
to frame your life according to those more easy and 
known scriptures, on which these first principles of 
the oracles of God are founded; for these give light, 
even at the first entrance, unto the very simple. 
This do, and you shall neither be unlearned in the 
mysteries of Christ, nor yet unstable in his ways. 
(3.) Be much in hearing the word interpreted, by 
learned and faithful ministers. (4.) If you meet 
with a place of scripture too hard for you, presume 
npt to frame a sense to it of your own head, but 
take notice of your ignorance, admire the depth of 
God's wisdom, suspend your opinion, and take the 
first opportunity to ask the meaning, of some one or 
other of those whose lips should preserve knowledge. 

Motives to read the scriptures. 

Let no colourable pretence keep you from diligent 
reading of God's book, for hereby you will be better 
prepared to hear the word preached. For it layeth 
a foundation for preaching; leading the way to a 
better understanding |hereof, and more easily pre- 
serving it in memory; also, to enable you to try the 
spirits and doctrines delivered; even to try all things, 
and to cleave to that which is good. 

How to read men's writings profitably. 

1. In reading men's writings, read the best, or at 
least those by which you can profit most. 

G a\ 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


2. Read a good book thoroughly, and with due 

3. Reject not hastily any thing you read, because 
of the mean opinion you have of the author. Be- 
lieve not every thing you read, because of the great 
opinion you have of him that wrote it. But, in all 
books of faith and manners, try all things by the 
scriptures. Receive nothing upon the bare testi- 
mony or judgment of any man, any farther than he 
can confirm it by the canon of God's holy word, or 
by evidence of reason, or by undoubted experience ; 
provided always, that what you call reason and ex- 
perience, be according to, not against, the word of 
God. If the meanest speak according to it, then 
receive and regard it; but if the most judicious in 
your esteem, yea, if he were an angel of God, should 
speak or write otherwise, refuse and reject it. 

Thus much for private reading. 

Only take this caution. You must not think it 
to be sufficient that you read the scriptures and other 
good books at home in prtvate, when, by so doing, 
you neglect the hearing of the word read and 
preached in public. For God hath not appointed, 
that reading alone, or preaching alone, or prayer, 
or sacraments, should singly and alone save any man, 
where all, or more than one of them may be had; 
but he requireth the joint use pf them all in their 
place and time. And in this variety of means of 
salvation, God hath, in his holy wisdom, ordained 
such order, that the excellency and sufficiency of one 
shall not, in its right use, keep any from, but lead 
him to a due performance of the other; each serving 
to make the other more effectual to produce their 
common effect, namely, the salvatioi^c^ mf^'s soul. 


Indeed, when a roan is necessarily hindered by 
persecution, sickness, or otherwise, that he cannot 
hear the word preached, then God doth bless reading 
with an humble and honest heart, without hearing 
the word preached. But where hearing the word 
preached, is either contemned or neglected, for read- 
ing sake, or for prayer sake, or for any other good 
private duty, there no roan can expect to be blessed 
in his reading, or in any other private duty, but 
rather cursed. Witness the evil effects, which by 
experience we see do issue from thence, viz. self-con- 
ceitedness, singularity in some dangerous opinions ; 
and schism, and too often a falling away into damna- 
ble heresies and apostacy. 

III. Of Meditation. 

When you are alone, then also is a fit season for 
you to be employed in holy meditation. For ac- 
cording to a person's meditation such is he. The 
liberal man deviseth liberal things; the covetous man 
the contrary. The godly man studieth how to please 
God, the wicked how to please himself. 

In meditation, the mind or reason of the soul 
fixeth itself upon something conceived or thought 
upon for the better understanding thereof, and for the 
better application of it to itself for use. 

The distinct acts and parts of meditation. 

(1.) In meditating aright, the mind of roan exer- 
ciseth two kinds of acts; the one direct upon the 
thing meditated; the other reflects upon himself, the 
person meditating. The first is an act of the con- 
templative part pf th^ understanding; the second is 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


an act of conscience. The end of the first is to 
enlighten the mind with knowledge: the end of the 
second, is to fill the heart with goodness. The first 
serveth (I speak of moral actions) to find out the 
rule whereby you may know more clearly what is 
truth, what is falsehood, what is good, what is bad ; 
whom you should obey, and what manner of person 
you should be, and what you should do, and the 
like. The second serveth to direct you how to make 
a right and profitable application of yourself, and of 
your actions, to the rule. 

In this latter are these two acts : First, an exami- 
nation) whether you and your actions be according 
to the rule, or whether you come short, or are swerved 
from it, giving judgment of you, according as it 
findeth you. 

The second is a persuasive and commanding act, 
charging the soul in every faculty, understanding, 
will, affections, yea, the whole man, to reform and 
conform themselves to the rule, that is, to the will of 
God, if you find yourself not to think and act accord- 
ing to it: which is done by confessing the fault to 
God with remorse, praying for forgiveness, return- 
ing to God by faith and repentance, and reforming 
the heart and life through new obedience. This 
must be the resolution of the soul. And all this a 
man must charge upon himself peremptorily, com- 
manding himself with sincere desire and fixed en- 
deavour to conform to it. 

When you meditate, join all these three acts, else 
you will never bring your meditation to a profitable 
issue. For if you only muse and study to find out 
what i$ true, what is false, what is good, what is 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


bad, you may gain much knowledge of the head, but 
little goodness to your heart. If you only apply to 
yourself that whereon you have musedj and no more; 
you may, by finding yourself to be a transgressor, 
lay guilt upon your conscience, and terror upon your 
heart, without fruit or comfort: but if to these two, 
you lay a charge upon yourself to follow God's coun- 
sel concerning what you should believe and do, when 
you have oflfended him: if you also form an upright 
design, through God^s grace, to be such a one as 
you ought to be, and to live such a life hereafter as 
you ought to live; then to science you add conscience, 
and to knowledge, you join practice, and will find 
the comfortable and happy effects thereof. Observe 
David's meditations, and you will find they came to 
this issue. His thoughts of God and of his ways, 
made him turn his feet unto God's testimonies. The 
meditation of God's benefits made him resolve to 
take the cup of salvation, and call upon the name of 
the Lord, and to pay his vows. When he con- 
sidered what God had done for him, and thence in- 
ferred what he should be to God again, he saith to 
his soul, '^ My soul, and all that is in me, praise his 
holy name." When in his meditation he found that 
it was his fault to have his soul disquieted in him 
through distrust, he chargeth it to wait on God, 
and raiseth up himself unto a holy confidence. <^ I 
will meditate on thy precepts," saith he. What, is 
that all? No, but he proceedeth to this last act of 
meditation, and saith, ^' I will have respect unto thy 

Rules for meditation. 

2. God's holy nature, attributes, \»otd, vrotVi^, 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


also what is duty, and what is sin; what you should i . 
be, and do; what you are, and what you have done, 
what are the miseries of the wicked^ and what are ' 
the happiness and privileges of the righteous, are fit I 
subjects of meditation. | 

3. That which must settle your judgment, and 
be the rule to direct you what to hold for true and 
good, must be the canon of God's word rightly un- 
derstood, and not your own reason or opinion: nor 
yet the opinions or conceits of men ; for these are 
false and crooked rules. 

Cautions about the matter of meditation. 

4. In seeking to know the secrets and mysteries 
of God and godliness, you must not pry into them 
farther than God hath revealed; for if you wade 
therein farther than you have sure footing in his holy 
word, you will presently lose yourself, and be swal- 
lowed up in a maze and whirlpool of errors and 
heresies. These deep things of God must be un- 
derstood with sobriety, according to that clear light 
which God hath given you by his word. 

6. When sin happeneth to be the matter of your 
meditation, take heed lest, while your thoughts dwell 
upon it, (though your intention be to bring yourself 
out of love with it) it steal into your affections, and 
work in you some secret liking to it, and so circum- 
vent you. For the cunning devices of sin are un- 
discovcrable, and you know that your heart is deceitful 
above all things. Wherefore, to prevent this mis- 
chief; (I.) As sin is not to be named, but when 
there is just cause; so it is not to be thought upon, 
but upon special cause, namely, when it showeth it- 
self in its motions and evil effects, and when it con- 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


cerns you to try and find out the wickedness of your 
heart and life. (2.) When there is cause to think 
of sin, represent it to your mind as an evil, the 
greatest evil, roost loathsome and abominable to 
God, and most hateful and hurtful to yourself. 
Whereupon you must raise your heart to a holy 
detestatiou of it, and resolution against it. (3.) Never 
stand reasoning or disputing with it, as Eve did 
with Satan; but, without any indulgence of it, you 
must do present execution upon it, by sheathing the 
word of God, the sword of the Spirit, into the heart 
of it; and by mortifying of it through the help of his 
Spirit. And if you would dwell long in meditating 
upon any subject, make choice of matter more plea- 
sant and less infectious. 

6. It is necessary that you be skilful in this first 
part of meditation, for hereby you find out, who is 
to be adored, who not; what is to be done, what 
not ; what you should be, what not. But the life of 
meditation lieth in the reflex acts of the soul, whereby 
that knowledge which was gotten by the former act 
of meditation, doth reflect and return upon the heart, 
causing you to apply to yourself what was proposed; 
whence also you are induced to endeavour to form 
your heart and life according to that which you have 
learned it ought to be. 

This, though it be most profitable, yet, because it 
i& tedious to the flesh, is most neglected. Where- 
fore it concerneth you who are instructed in the 
points of faith and holiness, to be most conversant in 
this when you are alone, whether it be when you are 
engaged in the common business of life, or retire- 
ment for solemn worship. 

Digitized byV:iOOQlC 


7. You should therefore be well read iti the book 
of your conscience, as in the Bible. Commune 
often with it, and it will fully acquaint you with 
yourself, and with your estate, through the light of 
God's Holy Spirit. It will tell you what you were, 
and what you now are ; what you most delighted in, 
in former times, and what now. It will tell you 
what straits and fears you have been in, and how 
graciously God delivered you ; what temptations you 
have had, and how it came to pass, that sometimes 
you were overcome by them ; and how, and by what 
means you overcame them. It will show what con- 
flicts you have had between flesh and Spirit, and 
what was the issue thereof, whether you were grieved 
and humbled when sin got the better ; and whether 
you rejoiced and were thankful when God's grace 
restrained you, or gave you the victory. Your 
conscience being set on work, will call to remem-' 
brance your oversights; and the advantages which 
you gave to Satan and to the lusts of your flesh, 
that you may not do the like again. It will remem- 
ber you by what helps and means (through God's 
grace) you prevailed and got a conquest over some 
sin, that you may use the same another time. If 
you thus diligently observe the passages and con- 
flicts of your Christian race and warfare, your 
knowledge will be an experimental knowledge; 
which, because it is a knowledge arising from the 
frequent proof of that whereof you were taught in 
the word; it becomes a more fixed, perfect, and 
fruitful knowledge than that of mere contemplation. 

It is only this experimental knowledge that will 
mako you skilful in the duties and trials of tlie 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


Christian life. Take a man that hath only read 
much of husbandry, physic, merchandise, policy, &c. 
who hath gotten into his head the notions of all 
these, and maketh himself believe that he hath great 
skill in them : yet one that hath not read half so 
much, but hath been of long practice, and of great 
experience in these, as far excellcth him in husban- 
dry, physic, trading, &c. as he excelleth one that is 
a mere novice in them. Such difference there is 
between one that hath only a superficial knowledge 
of Christianity, without experimental observation; 
and him that is often looking into the records of his 
own conscience, carefully observing the workings of 
bis own heart, and God's dispensations towards him. 

The experience which by this means you will 
obtain,?— of God's love, truth, and power; of your 
enemies' falsehood, wiles, and methods; of your own 
weakness without God, and of your strength by God 
to withstand the greatest lusts, and strongest temp- 
tations; yea, of an ability to do all things through 
Christ that strengthened you, — will beget in you 
faith and confidence in God, and love to him, watch- 
fulness and circumspection, lest you b6 overtaken 
with sin; with such degrees of humility, wisdom, and 
Christian courage, that no opposition shall daunt 
you, nor shake your confidence in Christ Jesus. 
Where do you read of two such champions as David 
and Paul? And where do you find two that re- 
corded, and made use of their experiences of God's 
truth and goodness, like these ? 

Wherefore, next to God's book, which giveth 
light and rule to your conscience, read often.. the 
book of your conscience. See what is tibeia:wiix^u 
G 3 ^Z^- . 

Digitized by VjOQ^tC 


for or against you. When you find that your heart 
and life are according to the rule of God's word; 
hold that fast to your comfort; but, wherein you 
find yourself not to be according to this rule, give 
yourself no rest, until in some good measure, at least 
in endeavour, you do live according to it. 

I have insisted the more largely on this point of 
meditation, because of the great necessity and pro- 
fitableness of it; many of God's people omit it, be- 
cause they know not bow to do it ; and because they 
know not their need, nor yet the benefit which they 
may receive from it. 

Motives to meditation. 

9. The necessity and use of meditation will ap- 
pear, if you co.isider, 1st, That reading, hearing, 
and transient^houghts of the best thipgs, leave not 
half that impression of goodness upon the soul, 
which they would do, if they might be recalled, and 
fixed there by serious thought. Without this medi- 
tation, the good food of the soul passelh through the 
understanding, and either is quite lost, or is like raw 
and undigested food, which doth not nourish those 
creatures that chew the cud, till they have fetched 
it back and chewed it better. Meditation is instead 
of chewing the cud. All the outward means of sal- 
vation do little good in comparison, except by medi- 
tation they are thoroughly considered, and laid up 
in the heart. 

2d, The great usefulness of meditation appears 
in that, (1.) It doth digest, ingraft, and turn the 
spiritual knowledge gained in God's word and ordi- 
nances, into the very life and substance of the soul, 
changing and fashioning you according to it, so 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


that God's will in his word and your will become 
one, choosing and delighting in the same things. 
(2.) Meditation fitteth for prayer, nothing more. 
(3.) Meditation also promoteth the practice of godli- 
ness, nothing more. (4.) Nothing doth perfect and 
make a man- an understanding Christian more than 
this. (5.) Nothing doth make a man more know 
and enjoy himself with inward comfort, nor is a 
clearer evidence that he is in a state of happiness, 
than this. For ^' in the multitude of my thoughts 
within me," saith David to God, " thy comforts 
delight my soul." And he doth by the Spirit of 
God pronounce every man blessed, that doth thus 
meditate in God's law day and night. 


Of Keeping Company. 

I. Rides concerning Company in general. 

When you are in company, of what sort soever, 
you must amongst them walk with God. 

Directions relating hereunto are of two sorts. 
First, Showing how you should behave towards all: 
Secondly, How towards good or bad company. 

First, In what soever company you are, your 
conversation in word and deed must be such, as may 
procure (I.) Glory to God. (2.) Credit to religion. 
(3.) All mutual, lawful, content, help, and true 
benefit to each other. For these are the ends, first, 
of society; secondly, of the variety of the good gifts 
'that God hath given unto men to do good with« 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


To attain these ends, your conversation must be, 
1. Holy; 2. Humble; 3. Wise; 4. Loving. 

First) It must be holy. You must, as much as in 
you is, prevent all evil speech and behaviour, which 
might else break forth, being careful to break it 
off, if it be already begun in your company. Suffer 
not the name and religion of Gpd, nor yet your 
brother's name be traduced, or evil spoken of; but 
in due place and manner vindicate each. Be diligent 
■to watch, and improve all fit opportunities of intro- 
ducing pious, and useful conversation; even whatso* 
ever may tend to the practice and increase of godli- 
ness and honesty. 

Secondly, Your conversation must be humble. 
You must give all due respect to all men, according 
to their several places and gifts; reverencing your 
betters, submitting to all in authority over you. 
Esteeming others as better than yourselves, in hon- 
our preferring them before you. Condescending 
unto, and behaving respectfully towards, those of 
meaner rank. 

Thirdly, You must be wise and discreet in your 
xarriage towards all, and that in divers particulars. 

1. Be not too open, nor too reserved. Not over 
suspicious, nor over credulous. For the simple 
believeth every word, but the prudent looketh well 
to his going. 

2. Apply yourself to the several conditions and 
dispositions of men in all indifferent things, so far as 
you may, without sin against God, or offence to 
your brother, becoming all things to all men; suit- 
ing yourself to them in such a manner, that if it be 
possible, you may live in peace with them, and may 
gain some interest in them, to do them ^ood^. 


Biit far be it from you todo as many, who under 
this pretence, are for all companies ; seeming reli- 
gious with those that be religious; but profane and 
licentious with those that are profane and licentious; 
for this is carnal policy, and damnable hypocrisy, 
and not true wisdom. 

3. Intermeddle not with other men's business, 
but upon due and necessary occasion. 

4. Know when to speak, and when to be silent. 
How excelleint is a word spoken in season ! As 
cither speech or silence will make for the glory of 
God, and for the cause of religion, and good one of 
another, so speak, and so hold your peace. 

5. Be not hasty to speak, nor be much in speak- 
ing, but only when just cause shall require ; for as it 
is shame and folly to a man to answer a matter before 
he hears it, so is it for any to speak before his time 
ai3d turn. Likewise consider, that in the multitude 
of words there wanteth not sin; but he that refrain- 
eth his lips is wise. 

6. Be sparing to speak of yourself or actions, 
to your own praise, except in case of necessary 
apology, and defence of God's cause maintained by 
you, and in the clearing of your wronged innocency, 
or needful manifestation of God's power and grace 
in you; but then it must be with all modesty, giving 
the praise unto God. Neither must you cunningly 
hunt for praise, by debasing or excusing yourself 
and actions, ' that you may give occasion to draw 
forth commendations of yourself from others. Thus 
seeking of applause, argueth pride and folly. But 
do praiseworthy actions, seeking therein the praise 
of God, that God may be gloriBed in you, then you 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


shall have praise of God, whatever you have of man. 
However, follow Solomon's rule: '^ Let another 
praise thee, not thine own mouth ; a stranger, and 
not thine own lips." 

7. As you must be wise in your carriage to- 
wards others, so you must be wise for yourself; which 
is to make a good use to yourself of all things that 
occur in company. L^t the good you see, be matter 
of joy and thankfulness to God, and improved for 
your own imitation. Let the evil you see, be matter 
of grief and humiliation, and a warning to you, lest 
you commit the like, since you are made of the same 
mould that others are, and are liable to the same 
temptations. If men report good of you to your 
face, repress those speeches as soon and as wisely as 
you can, giving the praise of all things "to God; 
knowing that this is but a temptation and a snare, and 
a means to breed self-love, pride, and vain-glory in 
you. If this good report be true, bless God that 
he hath enabled you to deserve it, and study by 
virtuous living to continue it. If this good report 
be false, endeavour to make it good by being here- 
after answerable to the report. 

8. If men report evil of you to your face, be 
not so much inquisitive who raised it, or how to con- 
fute them, or to clear your reputation amongst men; 
as to make a good use of it to your own heart before 
God. For you must know, this evil report doth not 
rise without God's providence. If the report be 
true, then see God's good providence ; it is that you 
may see your error and failings, that you may repent. 
If the report be false, yet consider, if you have not 
run into the appearance and occasions of those evils? 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


Then say. Though this report be false, yet it cometh 
justly upon me, because I did not shun the occasions 
and appearances. This should humble you, and 
cause you to be more circumspect in your ways. 
But if neither the thing reported be true, nor you 
have given occasion for it, yet see God's wise and 
good providence; not only in discovering the folly 
and malice of evil men, who raise and take up an 
evil report against you without cause ; but in giving 
you warning to look to yourself, lest you deserve 
thus to be spoken of. And how do you know, but 
that you should have fallen into the same, or the 
like evil, if by these reports you had not been fore- 
warned? Make use therefore of the railings and 
revilings of an enemy, though he be a bad judge, 
yet he may be a good remembrancer; for you shall 
hear from him those things, of which flatterers will 
not, and friends, being blinded, or over indulgent 
through love, do never admonish you. 

Fourthly, Your conversation amongst all must 
be loving; you should be kind and courteous towards 
all men. Do good to all, according as you have 
ability and opportunity. Give offence willingly to 
nonet Do wrong to no man, either in his name, 
life, chastity, or estate, or in any thing that is his; 
but be ready to forgive wrongs done to you, and to 
take wrong, rather than to revenge, or unchristianly 
to seek your own vindication. As you have calling 
and opportunity, do good to the soul of your neigh- 
bours; exhort and encourage unto well-doing. If 
they show not themselves to be dogs and swine; that 
is, obstinate scomers of good men, and contemners 
of the pearl of good counsel, you must, so far as God 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


giveth you any interest in them, admonish and in- 
form them with the spirit of meekness and wisdom. 
With this cloak of love you should cover and cure 
a multitude of your companions' infirmities and of- 
fences. In all your behaviour towards him, seek 
not so much to please yourself as your companion, 
in that which is good to his edification. 

J • Speak evil of no man ; nor yet speak the evil 
yeu know of any man, except in these or the like 
eases. (1.) When you are thereunto lawfully called 
by authority. (2.) When it is to those whom it 
concerneth, to reform and reclaim him of whom you 
speak, and you do it to that end. (3.) When it is 
to prevent certain damage to the soul or estate of 
your neighbour, which would ensue, if it were not 
by you thus discovered. (4.) When the conceal- 
ment of his evil may make you guilty and accessary. 
(6.) When some particular remarkable judgment of 
God is upon a notorious sinner for his sin, tlien, to 
the end that God may be acknowledged in his judg- 
ments, and that others may be warned, or brought 
to repent of the same or like sin, you may speak of 
the evils of another. But this is not to speak evil, 
so long as you do it not in envy and malice to his 
person, nor with aggravation of the fault more than 
is cause, nor yet to the judging of him as concerning 
his final estate. 

2. When you shall hear any in your company 
«peak evil of your neighbour, by slandering, whis- 
pering, or tale-bearing, whereby he detracts from his 
good name; you must not only stop your ears at 
such reports, but must set your speech and coun- 
tenance against him, like a north wind against rain. 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


3. When you hear another well reported of) let 
it not be grievous to you, as if it detracted from 
your credit; but rejoice at it, insomuch that God 
hath enabled him to be good, and to do good; all 
which maketh for the advancement of the common 
cause of religion, wherein you are interested: envy 
him not therefore his due praise. 

4. Detract not from any man's credit, either by 
open backbiting, or by secret whispering, or by any 
cunning means of casting evil aspersions, whether by 
way of pitying him, or otherwise: as, He is good or 
doth well in s\]ch and such things ; but. This but 
roarreth all. 

5. And, in a word, in all speeches to men, and 
communications with them, your speech must be 
gracious, that which is good to the use of edifying, 
that it may minister grace, not vice, to the hearers. 
It must not be profane, nor any way corrupt, as de- 
filed with oaths, curses, or profane jests; it must not 
be flattering, nor yet detracting: not bitter, not 
railing, censorious, or injurious to any man. It 
must not be wanton, lascivious, and filthy. It must 
not be false; no, nor yet foolish, idle, and fruitless: 
for all evil communication doth corrupt good manners. 
And we must answer for every idle word which we 
speak. Besides, a man may easily be discerned of 
what country he is, whether of heaven, of the earth, 
by his language; his speech will betray him. 

6. There is no wisdom or power here below, 
can teach and enable you to do all, or any of the 
fore-mentioned duties. This wisdom and power 
must be had from above. Wherefore, if you would 
in all companies carry yourself worthy the gospel of 

Digitized by CjOOQIC 


1. Be sure that the Saw of God, and the power 
of grace be in your heart, else the law of grace and 
kindness cannot be in your life and speech. You 
must be endued, therefore, with a spirit of holiness, 
humility, love, gentleness, long-suffering, meeknefss, 
and wisdom ; else you can never converse with all 
men as you ought to do. For such as the heart is, 
such the conversation will be. Out of the evil 
heart come evil thoughts and actions, but ^^ a good 
man, out of the good treasure of his heart bringeth 
forth good things," and according to " the abun- 
dance of the heart the mouth speaketh." A man 
must have the heart of the wise, before the tongue 
can be taught to speak wisely. 

2. You must resolve before-hand, as David did, 
to take heed to y.our ways, that you sin not with 
your tongue; and that you will keep your mouth as 
with a bridle. Before your speech and actions, be 
well advised; weigh and ponder in the balance of 
reason, all your actions and words, before you vent 

3. Let no passion of joy, grief, fear, anger, &c. 
get the head, and exceed their limits. For wise 
and good men, as well as bad, when they have been 
in any of these passions, have spoken unadvisedly 
with their lips. And experience will teach you, 
that your tongue doth never run before your wit so 
soon, as when you are over-afraid, over-grieved, 
over-angry, or over-joyed. 

4. You must be much in prayer to God, before 
you come into company, that you may be able to 
order your conversation aright. Let your heart also 
be lifted up often to God when you are in company, 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 

. 163 

that he would alt a watch before your mouth, and 
keep the door <A your lips, and that your heart may 
not incline id any evil thing, to practise wicked 
works with fhen that work iniquity; and that he 
would open your lips, that your mouth may show 
f(>rth his firaise; and that you may speak as }^>u 
ought to speak, knowing how to answer every man; 
for the tongue is such an unruly evil, that no man, 
but God only, can tame and govern it. 

II. Cautions and Directions concerni7ig evil 

When company is evil or sinful, if you may 
choose, come not into it at all. For keeping evil 
company will, (I.) Blemish your name. (2.) It will 
exposer you often to many hazards of your life and 
state. And (3.) You are always in danger to be 
corrupted by the contagious infection of it. 

By bad company, I do not only understand 
seducers, and such as are openly profane or riotous; 
but also such civil men, who yet remain mere 
worldlings, and all lukewarm professors, who are 
strangers t« the life and power of religion. For 
although the sins of these latter do not carry such 
a manifest appearance of gross impiety and db- 
honcsty, as those of open blasphemers, drunkards, 
adulterers, and the like; yet they are not less dan- 
gerous; your heart will quickly rise against these 
manifest enormous evils: but the other, by reason of 
their unsuspected danger, through that tolerable 
good opinion which, in comparison, is had of them, 
will sooner ensnare and infect you, by an vti^^w^^^ 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


chilling of your spirits, and by taking off the edge 
of your zeal towards the power of godliness: and 
so, by little and little, draw you to a remissness and 
indifferency in religion, and to a love of the world. 

If you shall think, that by keeping evil company, 
you may convert them, and draw them to goodness; 
be not deceived: It is presumption so to think. 
Hath not God expressly forbidden you such com- 
pany? If you be not necessarily called to be in 
sinful company, you may justly fear that you shall 
be sooner perverted, and made evil by their wicked- 
ness, than, that they should be converted and made 
good by your holiness. 

2. When by reason of common occasions in 

respect of the affairs of your calling, generally, or 

particular, in church, commonwealth, and family, 

you cannot shun ill company; (1.) Be specially 

watchful that your conversation be honest, un- 

blameable, and harmless; even with a dove-like 

innocency; that by your good example, they may, 

without the word, be brought to love the power and 

sincerity of that true religion which you profess. 

However, give no advantage to the adversary to 

speak evil, either of you, or of your religion; but, 

by a holy life, stop the mouths of ignorant and 

foolish men; or if they will notwithstanding speak 

against you, let your holy life shame all that blame. 

your good conversation in Christ Jesus. (2.) Be 

wise as serpents. Walk cautiously, lest they bring 

you into temporal evils and inconveniences; but 

especially lest they infect you with their sin; for a 

little leaven will quickly leaven the whole lump. 

That you may not be infected by that ill coro- 

Digitized by CjOOQIC 


pany which you cannot avoid, use these presenra* 
tives: (1.) Be not high minded; but fear, lest you 
do commit the same or the like sin; for you are of 
the same nature, and are subject to the same, or the 
like temptations. He that seeth his neighbour slip 
and fall before him, had need to take heed lest he 
himself fall. (2.) Your soul, like that of righteous 
Lot, must be vexed daily with seeing and bearing 
their unlawful deeds. (3.) Raise your heart to a 
sensible loathing of their sin; yet have compassion 
on the sinner; and so far as you have opportunity, 
admonish him as a brother. (4.) When you see 
or hear any wickedness, lift up your heart to God, 
and before him confess it, and disclaim all liking of 
it; pray unto God to keep you from it, and that be 
would forgive your companion his sin, and give unto 
him grace to repent of it. (5.) Though you may 
converse with sinful company (when your calUng is 
to be with them) in a common and colder kind of 
fellowship, by a common love, whereby you wish 
well to all, and would do good to all; yet you must 
not converse with them with such special and inti- 
mate Christian familiarity and delight, as you do 
with the saints that are excellent. Thus do, and 
the Lord can and will keep you in the midst of 
Egypt and Babylon, as he did Joseph and Daniel^ 
if he call you to it. 

3. As soon as possibly you can, depart out of 
their company, when you find not in them the lips 
of knowledge, or when they any way declare that 
they have only a form, but deny the power of god- 
liness. ^^ From such turn away," saith the apostle. 
And so use the preservatives prescribed, (^ any 

Digitized by CjOOQ IC 


Other, as prudence shall dirept, that you depart not 
more evil, or less good, than when you came together. 

III. Directions for Christian Fellowship. 

Now concerning good company, or Christian fel- 
lowship. First, highly esteem it, and much desire it. 
For you should love the brotherhood, however the 
world scoff at it; and forsake not the fellowship, or 
the company of the godly, as the manner of some is: 
but, with David, as much as may be, be a companion 
with them that fear God. 

Secondly, When you are in good company, you 
must express all brotherly love; improving your time 
together for your mutual good, chiefly in the in- 
crease of each other's faith and holiness; provoking 
one another to love, and to good -works. 

Then is your Christian love of the right kind, 
(1.) When you love them out of a pure heart fer- 
vently; which is, when you love them, because they 
are brethren, partakers of the same faith and spirit 
of adoption; having the same Father, and being of 
the same household of faith with you. (2.) When 
you love them not only with a love of humanity, as 
they are men, (for so you should love all men, even 
your enemies;) nor yet only with a common love of 
Christianity, wherewith you love all professing true 
religion, though actually they show little fruit and 
power thereof; but with a special love; for kind, 
spiritual; and for degree, more abundant. There- 
fore it is called " brotherly kindness," and a fervent 
love, distinct from charity, or a common love. 
Where this love is, it will unite hearts together. 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


like Jonathan's and David's, making you to be of 
one heart and soul. It will make you enjoy each 
other's society with spiritual delight. It will make 
you to sympathize with one another; and to bear 
each other's burdens. It will make you to com- 
municate in all things communicable, with gladness, 
and singleness of heart, as you are able, and that 
with a special love, beyond that which you show to 
them which are not alike excellent. Yea, it is so 
entire and so ardent, that you will not hold your 
life to be too dear, to lay down for the common good 
of the brethren. 

When; therefore, you meet with those that fear 
God, improve the communion of saints, not only by 
communicating in natural and temporal good things 
as you are able, and as there is need; but especially 
in the communion of things spiritual, edifying your- 
selves in your most holy faith, by holy speech and 
conference, and (in due time and place) in reading 
the holy scriptures and good books, and by prayer, 
and singing of psalms together. 

That your singing may please God, and edify 
yourself and others, observe these rules: 

1. Sing as in God's sight, and, in matter of 
prayer and praise, speak to God in singing. 

2. The matter of your song must be spiritual, 
either indited by the Spirit, or composed of matter 
agreeing thereunto. 

3. You must sing with understanding. 

4. You must sing with judgment, being able in 
private to make choice of psalms suitable to the 
present time and occasion; and both in private and 
public to apply the psalm sung to your own parti- 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


cuUr case, only taking heed that you do not apply 
the imprecations made against the enemies of Christ 
and his church in general, to your enemies in partir 
cular; also endeavour to confirm your faith, and 
incline your will and affections according to the 
subject of your psalmody, whether you sing the' 
prophecies of Christ, his promises, threats, com^ 
mands, mercies, or judgments, &c. 

5. You must make melody to the Lord in your 
heart; which is done, (1.) By preparing and setting 
the heart in tune. It must be an honest heart. 
(2.) The heart must be lifted up. (3.) The mind 
intent. (4.) The affections lively; thje heart 
believing, and, in matter of praise and thanks, 

6. Lose not your short and precious time, with 
idle compliments, worldly discourses, or talking of 
other men's matters and faults; nor yet in a barren 
and fruitless hearing and telling of news, out of 
affectation of strangeness and novelty. But let the 
matter of your talk be, either of God, or of his 
word and ways, wherein you should walk; or of his 
works of creation, preservation, redemption, sancti- 
fication, and salvation;, of his judgments which he 
executeth in the world, and of his mercies shown 
towards his people: or matter of Christian advice, 
either of the things of this life, or of that which is 
to come. Impart also each to other the experience 
and proofs you have had of God's grace and power, 
in your Christian warfare. And, as there shall be 
cause, exhort, admonish, and comfort one another. 

To do all these well, will require special godly 
wisdom, humility, and love* If these thr^e be in 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


jou, and abound, your society will be profitable: 
the strong will not despise the weak, neither will 
the weak judge the strong. You will be far from 
putting a stumbling block, or an occasion to fall in 
your brother's way, but you will follow after the 
things which make for peace, and things wherewith 
you may edify one another. You will then bear 
with each other's infirmities, and not seek to please 
yourself, but your neighbour, for his good to edifi* 

You must first be wise to make choice, not only 
of such matter of speech as is good and lawful, but 
sudi as is fit, considering the condition and need of 
those before whom you speak. In proposing ques- 
tions, you must not only take heed that they be 
not vain, foolish, and needless; such as engender 
strife, and do minister and multiply questions, rather 
than godly edifying; but you must be careful that 
they be fit and pertinent, both in respect of the 
person to whom they are proposed, and in respect 
of the person or persons before whom they must be 

Some men havo special gifts for one purpose, ~ 
Botxte for another* Some for interpreting scripture; 
9ome for deciding of controversies; some for dis- 
covering Satan's methods and enterprises; some are 
excellent for comforting and curing afflicted and 
wounded consciences; some are better skilled, and 
more exercised in one thing than in another. And 
some also of God's dear children, as they are not 
abie to bear all exercises of religion; so neither are 
they capable of hearing and profiting by all kind o{ 
discoimes of rdigioo. IF this w«re wisely «!b&er9^> 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


Christian conference would be much more useful, 
than usually it is. 

Secondly, Vou must be lowly minded, and of an 
humble spirit, not presuming above your gifts and 
calling. When you speak of the things of God, 
be reverent, serious, and sober, keeping yourself 
within the line, both of your calling, and the 
measure of that knowledge and grace which God 
hath given you; speaking positively and confidently 
only of those things which you clearly understand, 
and whereof you have experience, or sure proof. 
Think not yourself too good to learn of any; 
neither harden your neck against the admonitions 
and reproofs of any. If you have an humble heart, 
you will do as David did, when he was admonished 
and advised by a woman. He saw God in it, and 
blessed him for it; he received the good counsel, 
and blessed her that gave it: ^^ Now blessed be 
God who hath sent thee to meet me this day," said 
he, ^^ and blessed be thy advice, and. blessed be 
thou who hast kept me this day from coming to shed 

Thirdly, There will be need of the exercise of 
much fervent love and charity, even amongst the 
best. For as Satan hath malice against all good 
company and good conference, he will infuse matters 
of difference and discord. And because the best 
men differ in opinion, (though not in fundamentals, 
yet) in ceremonies, and less necessary points of 
religion;. and forasmuch as they all have infirmities, 
and, while the remains of corrupt nature are in 
^hem, are subject^and apt to mistake and misconstrue 
le another's actions and speeches, you will need 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


that this bond of love be strong, that it be not 
broken asunder by any of these, or other such 
means ; but that you remain strongly and sweetly 
knit together in the unity of the Spirit, through 
this bond of peace. 

I especially recommend this Christian society in 
brotherly love; because, 1. There is nothing giveth 
a more sensible evidence of conversion, and transla- 
tion from death to life, than this. 2. Nothing 
doth more assist the increase and power of godliness 
in any place or person, than this. For, let it be 
observed, though there be never such an ^excellent 
minister in any place; you will see little improve- 
ment in grace amongst the people, until many of 
them become of one heart; showing it by consorting 
together in Christian fellowship, in the communion 
of saints. 3. Nothing bringeth more sensible joy, 
comfort, and delight, next to communion with God 
in Christ, than the actual communion of saints and 
love of brethren. It is the beginning of that 
happiness on earth, which shall be perfected in 
heaven. It is for kind, the same, only differing in 

And, to conclude this subject, after you have 
been in company, good or. bad, it will be worth your 
while to examine how far you have hindered any evil 
in others, and have preserved yourself from evil: 
.how far you have endeavoured to do good to others, 
and how much you have gained in knowledge, 
serious affection, zeal, or any other good grace, by 
your company; and according as you find, let your 
conscience reprove or comfort you. 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 



I. Rules for our religious Conduct in Prosperity. 

When at any time you prosper in any thing, 
and have good success, that you may therein walk 
according to God's word, 

First, Take heed of committing those sins to 
which the nature of man is most addicted, when his 
heart is satiated with prosperity. 

Secondly, Be carefiil to produce those good 
fruits, which ate the principal ends why God giveth 
good success. 

1. The sins especially to be watched against, 
are, (1.) Denying of God, by forgetting him and 
his ways ; departing from hitn, when you are waxen 
fat like Jeshurun ; taking the more license to sin, 
by how much you prosper the more in the world. 
(2.) Ascribing the praise of success to yourself or 
to second causes; sacrificing to your own net. (3.) 
High-mindedness; thinking too well of youYself, 
because you have that which others have not, and 
despising and thinking too meanly of those who 
have not what you possess. (4.) If riches increase, 
or if you thrive in any other earthly thing, set not 
your heart thereon, either in taking too mudi 
delight therein, or in trusting thereto. Holy Job 
^nd good David were in some piarticnlatd ovett^ken 
with this fault. When Job was prospered, he 
entertained this secure Oonceit, th^t he should lite in 
his nest, and multiply his days as the sand; and 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


David in hta prosperity md, be should never be 
moved. But tbe Lord, by afflictions, taught them 
both to know, by experience, hpw^ vain all earthly 
things are to trust to, and ingenuously to confess 
their error. 

2. I reduce the good effects, or fruits, which are 
the principal ends why God giveth good success, to 
these two heads: (1.) Professed praise and thankful- 
ness to God. (2.) Real proofs of the said thank- 
fulness, in well using and employing this good 
success for God. 

II. Motives to Praise and Tkankfidness. 

Firsts Praise and thank God. For, (1.) It is 
the chief and most lasting service and worship 
which God hath required of you. (2.) It is most 
due, and due to him only; he alone is worthy, for of 
him are all things, and he is called the God of 
praises. (8.) It is the end why God doth declare 
his excellency and goodness, both in his word and 
works, that it may be matter of praise and thanks- 
giving; also why he hath given man a heart to 
understand, and a tongue to speak, that for them, 
and with them, as by apt instruments, they might 
acknowledge his goodness and excellency; thinking 
and speaking to his praise and glory. Wherefore 
David, speaking to his heart, or tongue, or both, 
when he would give thanks, saith " awake, my 
glory, and I will give praise." (4.) There is not 
any service of God more beneficial to man, than to 
be thankful; for itmaketh those gifts of God, which 
are good in themselves, to be good to you, and they 

' Digitized by VjOOQIC 


are the best preservatives of good things to you; 
nay, thankfulness for former blessings, are real 
requests for farther favours, as veil as the best 
security you enjoy; for God will not withdraw his 
goodness from the thankful. 

This praise and thanksgiving is a religious service, 
wherein a man maketh known to God, that he 
acknowledgeth every good thing to come from him, 
and that he is worthy of all praise and glory, for the 
infinite excellency of his wisdom, power, goodness, 
and all his other holy and blessed attributes, mani- 
fested in his word and works; and that he is beholden 
to God for all that he hath had, now hath, and 
which he still hopeth to enjoy. 

Praise and thanksgiving go together, and differ 
only in some respect. The superabundant excel- 
lency in God, shown by his titles and works, is the 
object of praise. The abundant goodness of God, 
shown in his titles and works, to his church, to youj 
or to any person or thing to which you have referenee, 
is the object and matter of your thanks. 

Second^ Directions for thanksgiving. 

These following things, concerning praise and 
thanksgiving, are needful to be known and observed : 

1. Who must give praise and thanks: namely, 
you, and all that have understanding and breath, 
must praise the Lord. 

2. To whom praise and thanksgiving are due: 
only to God. " Not unto us, not unto us," saith 
the church, " but unto thy name give glory." 

3. By whom must this sacrifice of thankfulness 
be offered : even by Christ only, the only high-priest 
of our profession, out of whose golden censor our 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


prayers and praises ascend, and are acceptable to 
God as incense. 

4. For what must we praise God and give him 
thanks: we must praise him in all his works, be they 
for us, or against us; we must thank him for all 
things, spiritual and temporal, wherein he is any 
way good unto us. 

5. With what must we praise and thank him: 
even with our souls, and all that is within us, and 
with all that we have. We must praise and thank 
God with the inward man; praise him with the spirit, 
and with the understanding; -praise him with the 
will; praise and thank him with all the affections, 
with love, desire, joy, and gladness; praise him 
with the whole heart. We must likewise praise 
him with the outward man, both with tongue and 
hands; our words and our deeds must show forth 
bis praise. When oiir thanks are cordial and real, 
then they make a good harmony and sweet melody, 
most pleasant in the ears of God. 

6. When must we give thanks: always, morning, 
noon, evening, at all times; as long as we live and 
have any being, we must praise him. 

7. How much: we must praise and thank him 
abundantly. We must endeavour to proportion 
our praise to his worthiness and goodness: as we 
must love him, so we must thank him with all our 
soul, and with all our strength. 

Thirdy The evil of unthankfuluess, and dissua- 
sives against it. 

There is no sin more common than unthankful- 
ness; for scarce one out of ten give thanks to God 
for his benefits; and those who do give thanks. 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


besides many errors in thanksgiving, do not thank 
God for one mercy in twenty. Many in distress 
will pray, or cry and howl at least, as they of old, 
for corn and oil; but who returneth proportionable 
praises to his prayers? Whereas the Christian 
should be oftener in thanks than in prayers, because 
God preventeth our prayers with his good gifts a 
thousand ways. 

Take heed therefore that you be not unthankfiil. 
It is a most base, hateful, and damnable sin. For 
he that is unthankful to God,' is (1.) A most dis- 
honest and disloyal man, he is injurious to God, in 
detaining from him his due, in not paying him bis 
tribute. (2.) He is foolish and improvident for 
himself; for by not paying his tribute of thankful- 
ness, and doing this homage, he forfeits all that be 
hath into the Lord's hands; which forfeiture many 
times he taketh: but if he doth not presently take 
the forfeiture, it will prove worse to the unthankftil 
in the end. For prosperity, without a thankful 
heart, always increaseth sin, and prepares a man for 
greater destruction. The more such a one thrives, 
the more doth pride, hard-heartedness, and many 
other evil lusts grow in him. This unthankfulness 
is the highway to be given over to a reprobate sense. 
Such prosperity always proves a snare, and endeth 
in utter ruin. For the prosperity of fools shall 
destroy them. And when the wicked prosper, it is 
but like sheep put into fat pastures, that they may 
be prepared for the slaughter. An unthankful man 
is, of all men, most unfit to go to heaven. Heaven 
can be no heaven to him; for there is praising of 
God continually. Now to whom thanksgiving, and 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


aioging of th« praie^i of God U tedious, to him 
heaven cannot be joyous. 

Fourth^ It concarna you, therefore, that you be 
much and often in thanksgiving and praise unto 
God« To this end, attend to these directions: 
]. Stir up your heart to holy resolution and longing 
desire so to do. 2. Beware of, and remove impedi- 
ments to thankfulness. 3. Improve all the means 
of gaining such a frame of mind. 

First, Consider that gratitude and thankfulness 
is the best service, being the end of all other 
worship; and is God's due; and is the end why God 
gives matter and means by which, and for which, 
we should be thankful; and that nothing is more 
beneficial than thankfulness, nor any thing more 
mischievous than unthankfulness, as hath been 
already shown; consider also, that hearty and con- 
stant thankfulness is a testimony of uprightness; it 
doth excellently become the upright to be thankful. 
It is all the homage, and all the service which God 
requireth at your hands, for all the good that he 
bestoweth on you. It is pleasant and delightful. 
It is possible and easy through the grace of God's 
Spirit. It is a small matter, to what God might 
exact; even as an homage-penny or pepper-corn. 
Thankfulness doth elevate and enlarge the soul, 
making it fruitful in good works, beyond any other 
duty. For the thankful man (with David) is often 
consulting with himself what he shall render to the 
Lord for all his benefits to him. Lastly, This 
spiritual praise and thanks to God by Christ, is the 
beginning of heaven upon earth, being part of that 
communion and fellowship which saints and angels 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


have with God above. It is that everlasting service, 
which endureth for ever. 

Fifth, Impediments to thankfulness. 

Not only stir up your soul to this great duty of 
praise and thanksgiving, but carefully shun all the 
impediments thereunto. Amongst many, take heed 
especially of these: (1.) Ignorance. (2.) Pride. 
(3.) Forgetfulness. (4.) Doubting of God's love. 
(5.) Undue affection to the benefits received, espe- 
cially to such as are temporal. 

1. If yoii are ignorant of the excellency and worth 
of God's good gift, or if you misprize things, prefer- 
ring natural, temporal, or common gifts, before spiri- 
tual, eternal, and special graces, peculiar to God's 
children, you will either give no thanks at all, (for 
who can give thanks for that which he esteemeth 
worth little or nothing?) or if you do give thanks, 
it will be preposterous, giving thanks for temporal 
blessings sooner, and more than for spiritual and 
eternal. Moreover, though you do know each good 
gift according to its due value, yet if, through igno- 
rance, you mistake the giver, you will bestow your 
thanks upon men and second causes, but not on 
God, who is the giver of every good and perfect gift. 

2. If you be proud and highly conceited of your own 
worth and good deservings, you will expect matters 
otherwise than God will think fit to give, as Naaman 
did, before he was cleansed; and when you miss of 
your expectation, you will be so far from thanks, that 
you will murmur and complain. 

3. Though you know the worth of the gift, and do 
acknowledge the giver, and also think yourself un- 
worthy of the gift, yet, if you have not these in ac- 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


tual remembrance, if you have forgotten them, and 
they be out of mind, how can you be duly thankful? 
Therefore, when David calleth upon himself to be 
thankful, he saith, " Forget not all his benefits." 

4. Suppose that you know well the worth of the 
gift, and do judge yourself unworthy of it, and re- 
member well that you received it of God, yet, if 
through misbelief and doubting of God's love, you 
think that God doth not give it to you in love and 
mercy, but in wrath, as he gave Israel a king, your 
heart will sink, and be so clogged with this fear, that 
you cannot raise it up to praise and thankfulness for 
any gift which you conceive to be so given. 

5. Suppose that you are free from all the former 
impediments, yet if you be too eagerly affected with 
the gift, you will, in a kind of over-joyousness, be so 
taken up with it, that, as little children, when their 
parents give them sweetmeats, or such things as 
they most delight in, fall to eating of the sweetmeat, 
and run away for joy, before ever they have shown 
any sign of thankfulness, so you will easily be over- 
taken in this kind, and neglect God that gave it. 

Sixths Helps to thankfulness. 

The helps to thankfulness are most of them di* 
rectly contrary to the former hinderances; of which, 
take these: 

1. Get sound knowledge of God, and of his in- 
finite excellencies, and absoluteness every way, and 
of his independency on man or any other creature; 
whence it is, that he needeth not any thing that man 
hath, or can do; neither can he be beholden to man: 
but know, that you stand in need of God, and must 
be beholden to him for all things. Know, also, 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 



that whatsoever God doth, by whatever means it be, 
he doth it from himself, induced by nothing out of 
himself, being free in all that he doth. Know like- 
wise, that whatsoever was the instrument of your 
good, God was the author of both the good and the 

Next, get a clear understanding of the full worth 
and excellent use of God's gifts, both common and 
special. Wealth, honour, liberty, health, life, sen- 
ses, reason, &c. considered in themselves, and in 
their use, will be esteemed to be great benefits; but 
if you consider them in their absence, when you are 
sensible of poverty, sickness and the rest, or if you 
be so blessed that you know not the want of them, 
then if you considerately and humbly look upon the 
poor, base, imprisoned, captive, sick, deaf, blind, 
dumb, distracted, &c. putting yourself in their case, 
you will say, that you are unspeakably beholden to 
God for these corporal and temporal blessings. 

But chiefly learn to know, and consider well, the 
worth of spiritual blessings: one of them, the peace 
of God, passeth all understanding. To enjoy the 
gospel upon any terms, to have salvation, such a 
salvation as is offered by Christ, to have faith, hope, 
love, and the other manifold saving graces of the 
Spirit, though but in the least measure, in the very 
first seed of the Spirit, though no bigger than a 
grain of mustard seed, with never so much outward 
aflliction, is of such inestimable value and conse- 
quence, that it is more than eye hath seen, or ear 
bath heard, or ever entered into the heart of man. 
For besides that the least grace is invaluable in itself, 
M is also the evidence of better gifts, namely^ that 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


God hath given you his Spirit, hath given you 
Christ, and in him hath given himself, a propitious 
^ and gracious God, and with himself hath given you 
all things. When you know God aright, and his 
gifts aright, knowing all things in God, and God in 
all things, then you will be full of praises and thanks. 

2. Be humble and base in your own eyes. Let 
all things be base in your eyes, in comparison of 
God, account them wortliless and helpless things 
without him. Judge yourself to be, as indeed you 
are, less than the least of God's mercies. For what 
are you of yourself, but a compound of dust and sin, 
unworthy any good, deserving of all misery ? You 
stand in need of God, but not he of you : it is of his 
mercy that you are not consumed. When you are 
thus sensible of your own need, and that help can 
come only from God, and that you are worthy of no 
good thing, then you will be glad and thankful at 
heart to God for any thing. An humble man will 
be more thankful for the least mercy, than a proud 
man will for the greatest. 

3. Frequently reflect upon the infinite excellencies 
of God and his great benefits. Commune with 
your soul, and cause it to represent lively to your 
thoughts, what God is in himself, what to his church, 
and to you, how precious his thoughts are to you- 
ward. Consider often what God hath done, and 
what he will do for your soul. Call to mind with 
what variety of good gifts he doth enrich his church, 
and hath blessed you, and you will find that they 
will pass all account and number. When also you 
consider that God is free in all his gifts to you, who 
are unworthy the least of them; if you would thus 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


dwell upon these, and siich like thoughts, they 
would excite in you a holy rapture and admiration, 
causing you to break out, with David, into these, 
or the like praises, ^^ O Lord, our Lord, how ex- 
cellent is thy name in all the earth !" I thank thee, 
1 praise thee, I devote myself, as my best saciifice 
to thee. I will bless thy name for ever and ever. 

4. Be persuaded of God's love to you in these 
good things, which he giveth to you: First, He 
loveth you as his creature, and if only in that respect 
he doth preserve you, and do you good, you are 
bound to thank him. Secondly, You know not but 
God may love you with a special love to salvation ; 
God's revealed will professeth as much, for you 
must not meddle with that which is secret. I am 
sure he giveth all-sufficient proof of his love, making 
offers of it to you, and which you are daily receiving 
the tokens of, both in the means of this life, and 
that which is to come. Did not he love you, when, 
out of his free and everlasting goodwill towards you, 
he gave his Son to die for you, that you, believing 
in him, should not die, but have everlasting life? 
What though you are yet in your sins, doth he not 
command you to return to him? and hath he not 
said, he will love you freely? What though you 
cannot turn to him, nor love him as you would, yet 
apply by humble faith to the Lord Jesus Christ, as 
your only saviour and great physician, and endea- 
vour, in the use of all good means, to be, and do, 
as God will have you; then doubt not but that God 
doth love you; and patiently wait, till you see it in 
the performance of all his gracious promises unto 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


Seventh^ Signs to know when God giveth good 
things in love. 

If you would consider things aright, you may 
possibly know with certainty, that the good things 
you have received of God, are bestowed in love to 
you; I will only ask you these ({tiestions: Hath 
God's mercies excited you to labour more diligently 
to please him well in all things? Have you had a 
will to be thankful upon the consideration thereof? 
Or, if you find a defect and barrenness herein, hath 
not this unfruitful and unthankful receiving of bles- 
sings from God, been a great burden and grief of 
heart to you? If so, this is an evident sign that 
God gave those good things to you in love, because 
this holy and good effect is wrought in you by them. 
Again, Do you love God? Would you love God, 
and his ways, and ordinances yet more? This 
proveth that God loveth you; for no man can love 
God, till God hath first loved him. Likewise, Do 
you love the children of God ? Then certainly you 
are God's child, and are beloved of God. By these 
things you have proof of your calling and election, 
that you are now translated from death to life. So 
that, though God may give^you some things in 
anger, as a father giveth correction, yet he never 
giveth any thing in hatred and in wrath, as he doth 
to his enemies. " All things work together for 
good to them that love God;" therefore, whatsoever 
he giveth to such, is in love. 

5. Prefer the honour and glory of God, before 
and above all things that may be beneficial to your- 
self: prefer, likewise, the kindness and love of God, 
in the gift, far above the gift itself; then you will 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC ' 


never be so taken up with the enjoyment of the gift, 
as to forget to give praise and thanks to the giver. 

6. Unto the former helps, add this: Lay a holy 
command upon your soul, and strictly charge your- 
self to be thankful; and, since you have such good 
reason for it, make no excuses against it, but say, 
with David, " Bless the Lord, O my soul; and all 
that is within me, bless his holy name." 

Lastly, To all other means, join earnest prayer to 
God, to give you a thankful heart. It is not all 
the reasons you can allege for it, nor all the moral 
persuasions you can propose to yourself, can e£Pect it, 
though these be good means, yea, God's means, yet 
if you go about to raise your heart to it, in the 
power of your own might, all will be vain. For as 
you cannot pray but by God's Spirit, so neither can 
you give thanks but by the same Spirit. Therefore 
say, as David did, " Renew, O Lord, a right spirit 
in me; and open my lips, that my mouth may show 
forth thy praise." 

III. Of the real Proofs of Gratitude and Thank- 
fulness to God, 

It is not enough to profess and utter praise and 
thanks to God; but you must give real proof thereof. 

1. By devoting and giving yourself to God; to be 
at the will of him, who is your sovereign Lord, who 
giveth you all that you have, who is always giving 
unto you, and always doing you good; paying your 
vows to him that performs his promises to you. 
Let it appear that you acknowledge him to be such 
a one as you say iu your praises, and that you stand 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


obliged and beholden to him indeed, as you aay in 
your thanks, in that both, in the frame of your 
heart, and the conduct of your Iife> you behave to- 
wards him as one who only is excellent, who only is 
God, who is your God, the God of your life and 
salvation; and that in all holy service. For thanks- 
living i^ the best way of thanksgiving, and it is a 
divine saying, ^^ The good life of the thankful, is the 
life of thankfulness." Wherefore, let every new 
mercy quicken your resolution to persevere and in- 
crease in well-doing, serving God so much the more 
^^ with gladness of heart, because of the abundance 
of all things." 

2. Do good with those blessings which God 
giveth you.^ For every good gift is given to a man 
to profit withal; not only himself, but every member 
of that body, whereof he is part. Whatsoever good 
gift God hath given you, whether temporal or spiri- 
tual, it must be employed to God's glory, and to 
your neighbour's good, as well as to your own, as 
you have opportunity. If riches (and the same rule 
will serve for health, strength, wisdom, skill, &c.) 
be given to you, you must honour God therewith, 
and as God doth prosper you in any thing, you must 
communicate to them that need, as to the poor, sick, 
weak, simple, and ignorant. If God give know- 
ledge, faith, spiritual wisdom, ability to pray, or any 
other of his rich graces, you must not hoard them 
up, and keep them reserved for your own private 
benefit, but you must communicate them to others, 
and improve them for the promoting their spiritual 
good, and edifying them in faith, hope, and love. 

By communicating your good and common gifts of 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


God. in this sort, you make yourself friends with 
them, against a day of need; and when you honour 
God, and do good with the talents which God put- 
teth into your hand, then you make the best im- 
provement of them. He who thus walketh with 
God in prosperity, shall certainly find him to be his 
sure friend in adversity, and when he shall be put 
out of his stewardship at death, then he shall be 
received into the everlasting habitations. When, 
the more you prosper, the better you desire and 
endeavour to be, and do, more good, this is an infal- 
lible proof of true thankfulness, and is an evident 
sign that you walk with God in piosperity a's he 
would have you. 

Give all diligence, therefore, to learn this lesson. 
How to be full, and how to abound; but know, it 
can be learned no where but in Christ's school, and 
can never be practised but by Christ's strength. 
This is it which the apostle had learned, and said, 
he was able to do it -through Christ that strength- 
ened him. It is a most needful and high point of 
learning, to be instructed, and to know, every 
where, and in every thing, how to be full, and how 
to abound: of the two, it is more rare and difficult, • 
than to know how to be abased, and to suffer want, 
which shall be the subject of the next chapter. 

d by Google 



Directions for Walking with God under 

Every day will bring forth its evil and cross; 
whether lighter and ordinary, or more heavy and 
extraordinary. The first sort riseth partly from the 
common frailties of the persons with whom you con- 
verse, and partly from your own; as from pride and 
peevishness, and suspicion of evil, &c. Such as 
discourtesies from those of whom you expected 
kindness; imperiousness, and too much domineering 
of superiors; sullenness, negligence, and disregard 
from inferiors; and awkwardness and perverseness in 
the persons and things with which you have to do. 
First, Rules concerning lighter crosses. 
1. Lay not these to he^rt, make them not greater 
than they be, through your impatience, as many do, 
who, upon every light occasion of dislike, cast them- 
selves into such a hell of vexation and discontent, 
that all the blessings they enjoy, are scarcely observed, 
or can make their lives comfortable. Whereas, 
wisdom should prevent, and love and prudence 
should cover and pass by most of these; seeing, as if 
you saw not: or if you will give way to any passion 
at these, let it be with hatred of their and your sin, 
which is the cause of these, and all other crosses. 

2. These should cause you to pity, and pray for, 
them that give you this offence; and for yourself, 
who many times without cause take offence. You 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


may, if need require, show your dislike, and admo- 
nish the offender, provided you do it with ^^ meekness 
of wisdom;" but learn hereby to warn yourself, that 
you give not the like offence. 

Second, Directions how to bear all afflictions well. 

But whether your crosses and afflictions be imagi- 
nary only, or real; whether from God immediately, 
or from man, whether light or heavy, follow these 
directions: 1. Be not transported with passion and 
anger, like proud Lamech, and froward Jonas. 
2. Be not overwhelmed, or sullen with grief, like 
oovetous Ahab, and foolish Nabal. But, 3. Bear 
them patiently. 4. Bear them cheerfully and 
thankfully. 5. Bear them fruitfully. 

1st, Remedies against sinful anger. 

To help you, that passion and heat of anger 
kindle not, or at least break not ou4; beyond due 

1. Convince your judgment thoroughly, that 
passion and rash anger i^ forbidden and hated of 
God. It is a fruit of the flesh. A work of the 
devil. Bred and nourished by pride, folly, and 
self-love. Also, that it surpriseth all the powers of 
right reason, putting a man beside himself, causing 
him to abuse bis tongue, hands, and the whole man; 
making him, like a fool, to cast firebrands at every 
thing which crosseth him, and that not only against 
his neighbour and dearest friends, but against God 
himself. Consider, likewise, that it maketh a man 
unfit to pray, to hear the word, or to perform any 
worship to God; and unfit to speak or hear reason, 
or to give or receive good counsel. God forbiddeth 
his children the company of the froward, and saith, 

Digitized by CjOOQIC 


that such a one cloth abound in transgression ; and 
that ^^ there is more hope of a f6oI than of him." 
Wherefore, he must needs be exposed to all the 
just judgments of God, temporal and eternal. For 
which cause, fix in your mind such an abhorrence of 
this vice, that you may beware and shun it with all 

2. Observe watchfully when anger beginneth to 
kindle and stir in you, and before it flame and break 
forth into speech or behaviour, set your reason at 
work, to prevent or restrain it. Nay, set faith at 
work, having in readiness, upon your mind, such per- 
tinent scriptures as these : " Be angry, but sin not;" 
and " anger resteth in the bosom of fools." Shall I 
then sin against Grod? Shall I thus play the fool? 

Rules to know when anger is sinful. 

You sin in your anger, 1. When it is without 
cause; as when neither God is dishonoured, nor 
your neighbour or yourself indeed injured ; when it 
is for trifles, and only because you are crossed in 
your will and desire, and the like ; but chiefly when 
you are angry with any for well doing. 2. Though • 
you have cause, yet if it extinguish your love to the 
person with whom you are angry ; so that you neglect 
the common and needful offices thereof. 3. When 
it exceedeth duff measure, as when it is over much, 
and over long. 4. It is sinful when it bringeth 
forth evil and unseemly effects, such as neglect, or 
ill performance of any duty to God or man ; also 
when if breaketh out into loud, clamorous, or revil- 
ing speeches, or into churlish, sullen, or indecent 
behaviour, or when it is attended with any injuri- 
ous act. 

Bigitized byC:iOOQlC 


3. If you cannot keep anger from rising within 
you, yet be sure that you bind your tongue and band 
to good behaviour. Make a covenant with them, 
and charge them not to show it, nor partake with it 
any farther than considerate reason, and good con- 
science shall advise you. Set a law to yourself, that 
you will not chide, nor strike while you are in the 
heat of anger. If there be cause of either, defer it 
until you have more government over yourself. If 
you say, that " If you do them not in your heat, 
you '^ shall not do them at all;" I answer, that, in 
saying so, you discover a great deal of folly and 
weakness. I am sure you never do them well in 
passion. And conscience of duty should lead you 
to chiding and correcting when there is cause, not 
passion : for, in it, you serve and revenge yourself 
upon the party, but not God. 

4. Both before, and when you are angry, see 
God, by the eye of your faith, as present with you, 
in hearing and looking upon you. This will make 
you peaceable and quiet, causing you not only to 
hold your hands and tongue, as you find by experi- 
ence you use to do, when some reverend friend is 
present; but this will calm and abate the inward heat 
and passion of your mind. 

5. If you feel your corruption and weakness to be 
such, and the provocation to anger so great that you 
fear you cannot contain yourself, then, if it be pos- 
sible, avoid all occasions of anger, and remove your- 
self, in a peaceable and quiet manner, from the per- 
son, object, or occasion thereof. And at all times 
shun the company of an angry man, as much as your 
calling will give you leave, lest you learn his ways. - 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


6. Howsoever it may happen that anger kindles 
in you, and breaketh out; be sure that you subdue 
it before it grow into hatred of him with whom you 
are angry. For this cause let not the sun go down 
upon your wrath; you know not what hatred it 
may grow into before morning. And the best means 
that I know to subdue it, is, if you find your heart 
to rise against any, pray heartily to God for him in 
particular, for his good; to this you are commanded. 
And be so far from seeking revenge, that force your- 
self to be loving and kind, showing all good offices 
of love with wisdom, as you shall have occasion ; 
overcoming evil with good. Pray also to God for 
yourself, that he would please to subdue this passion 
in you. This act of love to him with whom you are 
angry, performed before God, in whose sight you 
dare not dissemble, will excellently quench wrath, 
and prevent hatred against him, and will give proof 
between God and your conscience that you love him. 

If, pleading for yourself, you shall say, " It is 
roy natural constitution to be choleric, and flesh and 
. blood will have their course;" know, this is to nourish 
your passion. Know also, it is a wicked and hate- 
ful constitution of body, which came in with the fall. 
And flesh and blood shall not inherit the kingdom 
of God. Say not, '^ I am so crossed and provoked, 
never " any the like;" for Christ was more injured 
and more provoked than you, and yet never was in 
a passion. And you provoke God a thousand times 
more every day, yet he is patient with you. Say 
not, ^^ It is such a headstrong passion, that it is 
** impossible to bridle and subdue it;" for, I can 
assure you, that by using means, these prescribed, 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


if you also do often, and much, abase yourself be- 
fore God for your passion and folly, and daily repent 
thereof, and watch over yourself, you may, of most 
hasty and passionate, become most meek and patient 
before you die. 1 have seen it in old men (whoM 
age in itself giveth advantage to peevishness and 
frowardness) who were exceedingly passionate in 
their youth, yet, through the grace ofGod, by con- 
stant conflict against this vice, have attained to an 
admirable degree of meekness. 

2d, The cure of worldly grief. 

Next, as carnal anger, so worldly grief must be 
avoided in all sorts of crosses. For, by it, you re- 
pine against God, fret against men, aiid make your- 
self unfit for natural, civil, and spiritual duties, and 
if it be continued, it worketh death. 

The best remedy against worldly sorrow for any 
affliction, is to turn it into godly sorrow for sin, 
which is the cause of all our troubles. This will 
work repentance to salvation, never to be repented 
of; and will drive you to Christ, in whom, if you 
believe, you will have joy and comfort; even su(i 
joy unspeakable as will dispel and dry up both this 
and all other griefs whatsoever. For godly sorrow 
doth always, in due time, end in spiritual joy. 

Third, The nature of Christian patience. 

In the third place, I proceed to show the nature 
of Christian patience. By patience, I do not mean 
a stoical senselessness, or dull stupidity, like that of 
Issachar ; nor yet a counterfeit patience, like Esau's, 
and Absalom's ; nor a mere civil or moral patience, 
which wise heathens, to free themselves from vexa- 
tion, and for vain^glory and other ends, attained to ; 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


nor yet a profane patience, of men insensible of 
God's dishonour or. afflicting hand ; nor a patience 
per-force, when the sufferer is merely passive, be- 
cause he cannot relieve himself: but a Christian holy 
patience, wherein you must be sensible of God's 
hand, and when you caunot but feel an unwilling- 
ness in nature to bear it, yet, for conscience towards 
God, you do submit to his will, and that voluntarily, 
with an active patience, causing yourself to be willing 
to bear it so long as God shall please; after. the 
example of Christ, Not my will, but thine be done^ 
The excellency of Christ's sufferings was not in chat 
he suffered, but in that he was obedient in his suf- 
ferings. He was *' obedient to the death." So 
likewise no man's suffering is acceptable, if he be 
not active and obedient in suffering. 

This patience is a grace of riie Spiiit of God, 
wrought in the heart and will of man, through be- 
lieving, and applying the commandments and pro- 
mises of God to himself; whereby, for conscience' 
sake towards God, he doth submit his will to God's 
will, quietly bearing, without bitterness and vexation, 
all the labour, changes, and evil occurrences which 
befal him in the whole course of his life, whether 
from God immediately, or from man: as also wait- 
ing patiently for all such good things as God hath 
promised, but yet are delayed and unfulfilled. 

Fourth^ Motives to Christian patience under ad- 

To induce you to get, and to show forth this 
holy patience, know, that you have great need of it, 
and that in these respects : 

1. You are but h9lf a Christian^ you are imper^ 
I 31 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 



feet, and want a principal grace in the Christian life, 
if you want patience : thus St. James argueth^ im* 
plying that he who will be entire, and want nothing 
to make him a Christian, roust have patience. This 
passive obedien<:e is greater than active ; it is more 
excellent, and more difficult to obey in su£fermg) 
than to obey in doing. 

2. You cannot have a 'sure possession of your 
soul without patience : in your patience ^' possess ye 
your souls," saith our Saviour. A roan without 
patience, is not his own man: he hath not power to 
rule over his own spirit, nor yet of his own body. 
The tongue, hands, and feet of an impatient man 
will not be held in by reason. But he that is 
patient, enjoyeth himself, and hath rule over his 
spirit; no affliction can put him out of possession of 
himself. " 

3. There are so many oppositions and hiuder- 
ances in your Christian race and warfare, that, with- 
out patience to suffer, and to wait, you cannot 
possibly bring forth good fruit to God, nor hold out 
your profession of Christianity to the end ; but will 
decline, and give over before you have enjoyed the 
promise. Therefore you are bid to run with 
patience the race that is set before you. And the 
good ground is said to bring forth fruit with 
patience; and the faithful are said through faith and 
patience to inherit the promises. 

4. Patience worketh experience, without which 
no man can be an established Christian : this ex- 
perience being of the highest use to conform the 
soul of a Christian in the greatest difficulties. Tiii» 
must be said of the necessity, together wkh the 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


beil^t of patience, that you may love it, and may 
desire to have and show it. 

Fifthi Means to gain Christian patience under 

By what means you may attain it followeth : 

1. Spend those passions on your lusts, which 
war in your members, which are exercised on other 
objects; fall out with them, and mortify them; for 
nothing maketh a man impatient, so much as his 
lusts do, both because they will never be satisfied, 
and it is death to a man to be crossed in them ; and 
because the fulness of lusts causeth a guilty con- 
science, whence followeth impatience and trouble- 
some vexation upon every occasion, like the raging 
sea, which with every wind doth foam and rage, and 
east up nothing but mire and dirt. And as St. James 
saith, " whence are wars and fightings," (so I say of all 
other fruits of impatience) but from " your lusts which 
war in your members?" Take away the causes of 
impatience, then you have made a good advance to- 
wards gaining Christian patience. 

2. Lay a good foundation of patience by being 
humble and low in your own eyes, through an ap- 
prehension that you are less than the least of God's 
mercies, and that your greatest punishments are less 
than your iniquities have deserved. As Christians 
abound in humility so will they abound in patience, 
witness the examples of Abraham, Moses, Job, 
-David, and others. 

3. Labour to gain and improve the Christian 
graces of faith, hope, and love: all and either of 
these calm the heart, and keep it steady in adversity. 
For besides that, they quiet the heart in the assur- 


Digitized by VjOOQIC 


ance of God's love in Christ. For ** being justified 
by faith, we have peace with God, rejoice in hope;" 
whence proceed joy and patience in tribulation. 
And who can be impatient with him whom he loveth 
with all his heart and strength ? These graces also 
furnish the Christian with an ability of spiritual 
reasoning and disputing with a disquieted soul, 
whereby it may be happily composed, and brought 
to possess itself in patience under any adversity. 

Wherefore the fourth means of patience is, to do 
as David did, whensoever you find your heart begin 
to fret and be impatient, you must, before passion 
or grief hath got the mastery over you, ask your 
soul what is the matter; and why it is so disquieted 
within you. This do seriously, and your heart will 
quickly represent to you such and such afiiictions 
aggravated by many circumstances of distress. All 
which you must answer by the spiritual reasoning of 
your faith, founded on the word of God, whereby 
you may quiet your heart, and put your griefs to 

Whatsoever the affliction be that may trouble you, 
you may be furnished with reasons why you should 
be patient, either (1.) From God that sent it: 
(2.) From yourself, on whom it lieth: (3.) From 
the nature and use of the affliction itself: (4.) By 
considering the evils of impatience : (5.) By com- 
paring the blessings you have, and are assured that 
you shall have, with the crosses you have, especially 
if patiently endured. From all these considerations 
you will see reason why your heart should be quiet 
under the greatest afflictions. 

First, Consider well, that whatsoever the trouble 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


and cross be, and whosoever be the instrument of it, 
either in the sense of evil, or in the want of good 
promised, it comes from God your Father, (1.) Who 
doth all things according to the wisdom and counsel 
of his own will; (2.) Who doth afflict with most 
tender affection; (3.) Who correcteth and afflictetb 
in measure; (4.) Who hath always holy purposes 
and ends in all afflictions, directing them for your 

1. Consider that it was God who did it. ^^ There 
is no evil" (that is of punishment) " in a city, which 
the Lord hath not done," saith Amos. — " It is the 
Lord, let him do what seemeth him - good," saith 
Eli. ^* I opened not my mouth," saith David, 
" because thou (Lord) didst it." " The Lord 
gave, and the Lord hath taken away; blessed be the 
name of the Lord," saith Job. 

2. All this God doth to his children with a 
fatherly affection, in much love and pity. He hath 
your soul still in remembrance, while you are in 
adversity. Yea, he bcareth some part of the burden 
with you: for, speaking after the manner of man, 
he saith, that in all the afflictions of his children he 
is afflicted. He delighteth not in afflicting the 
children of men, much less his own children. 

If you ask. Why then doth he afflict, or why 
doth he not ease you speedily ? I ask you, why a 
tender-hearted father, being a surgeon, who is 
grieved and troubled at the pain and anguish which 
he himself causeth his child to feel by necessary 
operation, doth notwithstanding apply the burning 
irons, and suffer those plasters to afflict him for a 
long time? You will say, Sure the wound or malady 
of the child rec|[uired it^ and |hat else it could not 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


be cured. This is the case between God and you: 
God's heart is tender, and yearneth towards you, 
when his hand is upon you: therefore bear it 

3. God afflicteth you in measure, fitting your a& 
fliction for kind, time, and weight, according to the 
fitrength of grace which he hath already given you, 
or which certainly he will bestow upon you. He 
doth never lay more upon you, than what you shall 
be able to bear, and will always with the cross and 
temptation, make a way to escape. Ti^e husband^ 
nan will not always be ploughing, and harrowing of 
his ground, but only giveth it so much as it bath 
need of, or as the nature or situation of the soil re- 
quireth. So likewise he thresheth his divers sorts 
of grain, with divers instruments, according as the 
grain can endure them: ^^ the fitches are not threshed 
with a threshing instrument, neither is the cart-wheel 
turned about upon the cummin; bread-corn is bruis- 
ed, because he will not ever be threshing it, nor 
break it with the wheel of his cart, nor bruise it with 
his horsemen." If the husbandman do all this by 
the discretion wherewith God hath instructed him; 
can you think that God, who is Wonderful in coun- 
sel, and excellent in working, will plough and har- 
row any of his ground, or thresh any of his com, 
above that which is fit, and more than his ground 
and corn can bear ? Should not his ground and com 
therefore be patient at such tillage, and at such 
threshing ? 

4. God's end in afflicting, is always his own 
glory in your good; as, to humble you, and to brhig 
you to a sight of your sin, to break up the fallow 
ground of your heart, that you may sow in rigfat*- 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


eousQess and reap in inercy> to harrow you, that the 
seed of grace may take root in you. AH God's af- 
flictions are to remove impediments of grace: ^^ By 
this," saith Isaiah, ^^ shall the iniquity of Jacob be ' 
purged; and thia is all the fruit, to take away his 
sin." All the ploughing is but to kill weeds, and to 
fit the ground for seed; all the threshing and win- 
nowing, is but to sever the chaff from the corn ; and 
all the grinding, and boulting by affltetions^ in bub 
to sever the bran from the flour, that God's people 
may be a pure offering, acceptable to him. Or else 
be afflicts, that his children Height have experience 
of his love and power in preserving atid delivering 
them, or that they might have the exercise, proof, 
and increase of faith, hope, love, and other principal 
graces, which serve for the beautifying and perfect- 
ing of a Christian. God doth judge his children 
here, that they may repent, and be reformed, that 
they may not be condemned with the world. God's 
end in chastening you, will be found to be always 
for your good, that you shall be able to say, '' It 
was good for me to be afflicted." For it is ^^ that 
you may be partakers of his holiness," and accord- 
ingly of his glory and happiness. Bear therefore 
all afflictions patiently, for they are for your good. 

If this be your cross and trouble, that you want 
many of the graces and good giftis of God which he 
hath promised: know also that this deferring to give 
graces and comforts, is of God, not out of neglect or 
forgetfulness of you ; but of wise and good purposes 
towards you. As to inflame your desires more and 
more after them ; and, that you should seek them in 
a better: manner. It is likewise to try your faith 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


and hope, whether you will do him that honour, as 
to wait and rest upon his bare word. When you 
are fit for them, you shall have them. You must 
'therefore charge your heart yet to wait patiently for 
them, considering the faithfulness and power of God 
that promised : and that all the promises of God are 
yea and amen in Christ. He is wise, true and 
able to fulfil them in the due time, and in the best 
manner: for " faithful is he that hath promise^ and 
will fulfil it :" and " yet a little while, and he that 
shall come, will come, and will not tarry." 

Secondly, When the soul beginneth to be dis* 
quieted, consider how unworthy you are of any bless- 
ing, how worthy you are of all God's curses, yea, 
of eternal damnation in hell; and that justly^ because 
of the sins of your nature, of your heart, and of your 
life. When you do thus, your heart will be quiet 
and contented, you will say with the church, what- 
soever your trouble be, " I will bear the indigna- 
tion of the Lord, for I have sinned against him." 
He who acknowledgeth that he hath deserved to be 
hanged, drawn, and quartered, for an offence against 
the king, if the king will be so merciful that be shall 
escape only with a severe whipping, to remember 
him of his disloyalty, {though he smart terribly with 
those lashes,) yet in his mind he can bear them 
patiently and submissively. If you think thus, " I 
deserve more punishment in this kind,' nay, in any 
other more grievous than this; my punishment is less 
than mine iniquities deserve, for I might have been 
long since despairing in torments, and past all means 
and hope of salvation; but I live, and have time and 
means to rn^ke a good use of my afflictions ;" these 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


thoughts will cause you to say, Why do I, who am 
a living man, complain for the punishment of my 
sin, which is so much lighter than my desert? And 
will say, with the church, in all your distresses, ^^ It 
is God*s mercy it is not worse. It is God's mercy 
I am not utterly consumed." 

Thirdly, when your soul beginneth to be impatient 
under afflictions, whether in soul, body, or estate; 
consider the nature and use of them. To the eye 
of sense they are evil as poison, hurtful and danger- 
ous ; but to the eye of faith, they are good and use- 
ful, as physic, most healthful to the soul, and saving. 
God, the skilful physician, hath quite altered the 
nature of crosses to his children ; he that bringeth 
light out of darkness, so orders afflictions, that they 
become good antidotes and preservatives against sin, 
and good purgatives of sin. The sting and curse of 
the cross, which remaineth to the wicked, is by 
Christ's patient suflPering, and God's mercy, taken 
quite away out of the afflictions of believers. Af- 
flictions to the godly, are not properly punishments, 
serving to pacify God's wrath for sin; but are only 
chastisements to remove sin, and are exercises of 
graces, and means of holiness. For they serve 
either to prevent evil, or to reform it^ either to pre- 
pare way for grace, to quicken and increase grace, 
or to discover and give proof of it. God is a wise 
and skilful refiner, he knows how to purge his gold, 
by casting it into the fire of affliction ; which fire is 
not the same to the dross, that it is to the gold ; it 
consumes the dross, but refineth the gold, that it 
may be fit to be made a vessel of honour. . Fire 
BervJBth to try gold, as well as to purge it;. for pure 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


gold) though it remain in the fire many days, the 
fire cannot waste it; when it is once pure, it will 
hold its weight still for all the burning. Hence it 
is that the Psalmist saith, ^^ It is good for me that I 
have been afflicted, that I might learn thy statutes;'' 
and the apostle saith, ^' AH things work together for 
good to them that love God." He is a froward and 
foolish person, who» being sick of a deadly disease, 
doth not patiently and cheerfully bear the gripings 
and sickness of stomach, when he kuoweth this sick- 
ness, caused by bitter physic, is for his health. 

You will say, if you could find that your afflic- 
tions did you any good, you should not only be 
patient, but cheerful under them. 

I answer,* Whatsoever you feel, faith in God's 
word will tell you, that they now do you good, and 
hereafter you shall feel the benefit of it. The benefit 
of physic is not always felt the day you take it, 
but chiefly when the physic hath done working. 
The chief end why God trieth and purgeth you by 
afflictions, is, that he may humble you, and prove 
you, to do you good at your latter end. You 
should therefore be patient in the mean time. 

Fourthly, If yet your heart remain disquieted, 
because of your affliction; consider with yourself, 
>vhat harm impatience will do you, compared with 
the good that will follow a patient enduring of it. 
For, besides that it depriveth you of your right un* 
derstanding, and maketh you to forget yourself, as I 
have said, even to forget your duty both to God 
and man; it is the readiest means to double and 
lengthen the affliction, not to abate it, and take it ofi; 
That parent who intended to give a child but light 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


correction} if be be impatient and rebellious under 
it, is hereby more incensed, and doth punish him 
more severely. But if, in any affliction, you do 
patiently submit yourself under God's mighty hand, 
besides the ease and quiet it giveth to the soul, and 
experience and hope which it produceth in you, it is 
the readiest means of seasonable deliverance out of 
it ; for then God will exalt you in due time. God 
is wise, and too strong to be overcome by any 
means, but by fervent prayer and humble submission 
to his will. 

Fifthly, If yet your mind be disquieted within 
you at any crosses; that you may quiet your soul, 
you must not, as most do, only consider the weight 
and number of your crosses, together with their 
several aggravations; but withal seriously think upon 
the manifold mercies and favours of God, both in the 
evils you have escaped, and in the benefits which you 
have received and do now enjoy, and which, through 
Christ, you have cause to hope to receive hereafter. 
But amongst all his mercies, forget not this one, 
which you have already, God hath given Christ 
unto you, whereby he himself is yours, as your all* 
aufficient portion. Now, if you have Christ, you 
have, with him, all things also which are worth the 

When you have thus weighed impartially blessings 
and mercies against crosses, you will tell me^ that 
for one cross, you have a hundred biasings, yea, a 
blessing in your crosses, and you will say, that this 
one mercy of being in Christ, alone weighetb up all 
crosses, and maketh them as light as nothing; giving 
you 80 much matter of joy and thank&ilness, even in 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


the midst of affliction, tliat you can neither have 
cause nor time to be impatient, or to repine at any 
affliction, but to rejoice even in your tribulations. 

And as for the time to come, when you think 
upon all your crosses and sufferings of this present 
time, yet reckon, that " they are not worthy to be 
compared with the glory that shall be revealed in 
you." For they are but short for time, and light for 
weight, being compared with the everlasting weight 
of glory which they will work for you, if you endure 
them patiently. I will say nothing of the shortness 
and lightness of your afflictions, in comparison of the 
far more intolerable and eternal weight of torments 
in hell, which you escape : and in comparing afflic- 
tions with glory, I will point out to you only the 
apostle's gradation; you shall have, for affliction, 
glory, for light affliction, weight of glory; for short 
affliction, an eternal glory; for common and ordinary 
affliction, excellent glory. And although it might 
be thought that he had said enough, yet he ad* 
deth degrees of comparison; yea, goeth beyond 
all degrees, calling it more excellent, far more excel- 
lent: for thus he saith, '^ Our light affliction, which 
is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more ex- 
cellent and eternal weight of glory.** Indeed, you 
roust not look at the things which are seen with the 
eye of sense, but at things which are not seen, 
which are spiritual and eternal, seen only by the eye 
of faith. 

You wilt say. If you did but bear afflictions for 
Christ, then you could rejoice in hope; but you offr- 
times suffer afflictions jusfly for your sin. 

I answer, Though this place prineipally points t^ 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


su£Pering for Christ's cause, yet it is all one, in your 
case, if you bear afflictions patiently for his sake. 
A man may suflbr afflictions for Christ two ways : 
First, When he suffi^reth for his religion and for his 
cause. Secondly, When a man suffereth any thing 
which God layeth upon him, quietly, for Christ's 
will and commandment sake. This latter is more 
general than the former, and the former must be 
comprehended in this latter ; else the former suffer- 
ing for Christ's cause, if it be not in love and 
obedience, and for Christ's sake, out of conscience 
to ful61 his will, is nothing : whereas he that en- 
dureth patiently God's just punishment for sin for 
Christ's sake, endeavouring to submit his will to the 
will of Christ ; this man suffers, that is, patiently 
endureth affliction for Christ, though he never suffer 
for profession of Christ : and, if such a one were 
put to it, he would readily%suffer for Christ's cause. 
And such afflictions as these, thus patiently endured, 
work also this excellent weight of glory, as well as 
the other. 

By these and the like reasonings of faith, you 
may possess your soul in patience, as David and 
others have done, by casting anchor on God, and on 
his word, fixing their stay and hope in him. Let 
the issue of your reasoning be this: I will wait on 
God, and yet, for all the causes of distress, praise 
him who is the health of my countenance, and my 
God. Thtis David quieted his heart, when he 
heard tidings that his city Ziklag was burnt, and 
that his wives and all that he had, together with the 
wives and children of all his soldiers, were carried 
eaptiv«; an4 when he saw that his soldiers began to 

Digitized byVjOOQlC 


mutiny, and heard them speak of stoning him, he 
encouraged himself in the Lord his God. And 
good Jehoshaphat, in his desperate condition, cast, 
anchor here, saying, ^* O our God, we know not what; 
to do, but our eyes are on thee.'* Thus, by the ex- 
ercise of your hope in God, the heart may be 
wrought unto much patience and quietness in all dis- 

A farther means of patience is. Observe the 
patience of others, as of the prophets and faithful 
servants of God, who are recorded in scripture, and 
left as examples of su£Pering affliction, find of 
patience. ^^ We count them happy that endure," 
saith St. James; " you have heard of the patience 
of Job, and have seen the end of the Lord; that the 
Lord is very pitiful, and of tender mercy." But 
especially represent to your thoughts the patience of 
your head and Saviour . Jesus Christ, whom you 
pierced by your sins, who as a lamb, dumb before 
the shearer, opened not his mouth. Now, if you 
would consider him who is the author and finisher 
of your faith; who endured such contradiction of 
sinners, &c. and such intolerable anguish of soul, 
when he wrestled with his Father's wrath; then you 
would not be wearied nor faint in your minds, when 
you are under any affliction. If with Christ you set 
the joy before you, you will be able to endure the 
cross, and despise the shame of all persecution for 
well doing, and so run that race which is set before 
you with patience, that you shall in the end sit down 
with Christ at the right-hand of the throne of Gpd» 

Sixthly, Pray much for patience, waiting paticmtly 
for it; and without doubt, the God of patience' and 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


oonsolation, who hath commanded it, who seeth 
that you have need of it, and who hath promised to 
give you all your petitions which you make accord- 
ing to his will, will surely give you patience. 

Sixths Of bearing afflictions thankfully and fruit- 

To bear adversity and afflictions well, it is not 
enough that you bear them patiently, because you 
deserve them, and because they come from God; but 
you must bear them thankfully ; cheerfully and com- 
fortably, because they are, as you have heard, for 
your good. We do not only patiently endure the 
hand of the surgeon, and the prescriptions of the 
physician, but we thank them, pay them, and are 
glad of their recipes, though they put us to pain. 
** Count it exceeding joy," saith St. James, " when 
you fall into divers temptations, knowing this, that 
the trying of your faith worketh patience," &c. 

Last of all, unto patience and thankfulness, you 
must add fruitfulness and growth of grace; this 
should be the fruit of all crosses and afflictions, that 
with David you may be better for them, and that 
you may, with Job, come out of them as gold re- 
fined and purged from dross. Therefore God 
doth chasten you as he did Jacob: This is all the 
fruit, to take away your sin, and that you should 
be partaker of his holiness. Be better, therefore, 
for crosses; then God hath his end, when, after his 
ploughing, harrowing, and threshing of you, he shall 
reap the barest of well doing, which he reapeth not 
so ooiilch fbr himself, as for you ; for the ground that 
bringeth forth fruit meet for him that dresseth it, 
ree^v^h blessing from God. All good works are 
^^ treasured up in heaven for the doers of them " 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 

When you have learned this lesson also, *^ How to 
be abased and to suffer need/' as well as ^* how to be 
fxiH and to abound/' with all the fore-mentioned di- 
rections, how at all times, and in all things, to walk 
with God, you will provo yourself to be a good pro- 
ficient in the school of Christ, one that hath walked 
to good purpose before God; showing, that you are 
neither barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of 
our Lord Jesus Christ. 

Thus much concerning the outward frame of your 
life and conversation, according to which you must 
walk with God. The inward truth and life of all 
this, which is, doing all in uprightness, remaineth 
to be spoken unto, and is as followetfa. 


Of Uprightness. 

The sum of this head is contained in this, that 
in your whole walking with God you must be up* 
right. Both these, to walk with God, and to be 
upright, are joined in this precept: '^ Walk with me, 
and be perfect," or upright. He speaketh not of an 
absolute perfection of degrees, in the fulness of all 
graces, which is only aimed at in this life, towards 
which the Christian, by watchfulness and diligence, 
may come nearer and nearer; but is never attained 
until we come to heaven, amongst the spirits of just 
men made perfect. He speaketh here of the per- 
fection of parts, and of truth and grace in every part. 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


expressing itself in unfeignedness of will and endea* 
vour; which is uprightness. 

1. The Necessity of Uprightness in Religion. 

That you should be sincere and upright, read 
Joshua xxiv. 14. l.Chron. xxviii.. 9. And the 
apostle telleth you, that since Christ Jesus, your 
passover, is slain, you must keep the feast (which 
shadoweth forth the whole time of our life here) 
" with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth." 
The examples of Noah, Nathaniel, with many 
others in the scriptures, are therefore written, that 
of them you may learn to be upright. 

There is special reason why you should be up- 

1. Your God with whom you walk, is perfect and 
upright; he is truth, he loveth truth in the inward 
parts; all his works are done in truth; and there was 
no guile ever found to be either in the mouth, hand, 
or heart, of your head Christ Jesus. Now, you 
should please God, and be like your Father, and 
your head Christ Jesus, following his steps. 

2. It is to no purpose to do that which is right 
ill God's sight, in respect of the matter of your 
actions, if in the truth and disposition of your soul 
you be not upright therein. For the best action, 
void of uprightness, is but like a well-proportioned 
body without life and substance. And that is 
counted as not done at all to God, which is not done 
in uprightness. This exception is taken against 
Amaziah's good actions : It is said, ^^ He did that 
which was right in the sight of the Lord, but" he 

Digitized by CjOOQ IC 



did it not in uprightness, be did it *^ not with a per- 
fect heart." 

3. The best actions, without uprightness, do not 
only lose their goodness ; but, in God's account, are 
esteemed abominable evils. Such were the prayers 
and sacrifices of the hypocritical Jews. For God 
judgeth such actions, and such services, to be mere 
flattery, lying, and mocking him to his face* 

Now, because there is none so ready to presume 
that he is upright, as ^ hypocrite, sapng, with 
Ephraim, ^^ In all my labours they shall find no iniqui- 
ty in me that were sin.'' And, because there are none 
so ready to doubt whether they be upright, as are 
the tender-hearted and sincere; so it was with DaVid, 
when he prayed to have a right spirit renewed in him; 
it will be needful and useful that I show you what 
uprightness is, and by what infallible signs you may 
kpow whether you be upright or not. 

II. The Description of Uprightness. 

Christian uprightness, for of that I speak, is a 
saving grace of the Holy Ghost, wrought in the 
heart of a man rightly informed in the knowledge 
^f God in Christ, whereby his soul standeth so en- 
tirely and sincerely right towards God, that, in the 
true disposition, bent, and firm determination of his 
will, he would, in every faculty and power of soul 
and body, approve himself to be such a one as God 
would have him to be, and would do whatsoever God 
would have him to do, and all as God would have 
him, and that, for and unto God, and his glory. 

The author of this uprightness is God's sanctify-^' 
ing Spirit, 

/iigitized by VjOOQIC 


The comiBon nature of it, wherein it agretth 
with other graces, is, it is a saving grace; it is pecu* 
liar to them that shall be saved, for only they ar^ 
endued with it; but it is common to all, and every 
one, who is e£Pectually called. 

The proper seat of this grace is the will. 

The fountain in man from whence, through the 
special grace of the Holy Ghost, it springs, is sound 
knowledge of God and of his will, concerning those 
things which the will should choose and refuse; and 
from faith in Christ Jesus, through whom every be-c 
liever doth, of his fulness, receive this grace to be. 
upright. Hereby Christian uprightness differetb 
from that uprightness, which may be in a mere na- 
tural, superstitious, and misbelieving man, for even 
such may be unfeigned in their actions in their kind, 
both in actions civil and superstitious, doing that, 
which they do, in their ignorance and blindness, 
without dissimulation either with God or man. 
This St. Paul did before his conversion, he did as 
he thought he ought to do. 

The form and proper nature of uptightness, is the 
good inclination, disposition, and firm intention of 
the will, to a full conformity with God's will, and 
that not in some fapulties and powers of man, or in 
some of his actions, but the Christian would be uni-^ 
versally sincere in all his parts, and in all things; he 
would be, and do, as God would have him to be and 
do, making God's will, revealed in his word and 
works, to be his will, and God's glory to be bis end, 
This holy uprightness expresseth itself in these 
three things:— 

First, It showeth itself, in a well-grounded and 

Digitized by V:iOOQ iC 


unfeigned purpose and resolution to cleave to the 
Lord, and to make God's will to be his will. This 
is an act of the will, guided and concluded from 
sound judgment. 

The second act is, an unfeigned desire, and long* 
ing of the heart, to attain this good purpose and re- 
solution, willing or desiring in all things to live 
honestly, and to live worthy of the Lord in all well* 
pleasing; longing, with David, after God's precepts. 
This is an act of the affection of desire, a motion of 
the will, drawing and exciting a man forward, giving 
him no rest, until he have obtained, at least in some 
good measure, his said purpose. 

Thirdly, Uprightness showeth itself in a true 
endeavour and exercise, according to the strength 
and measure of grace received, to be, and to do, 
according to the former resolutions and desires. 

Such was the apostle's endeavour, to have always 
a conscience void of offence towards God and towards 
men. This endeavour is an act of the whole man. 
All and every active j)ower of soul and body, as 
there shall be use of them, are employed in unfeigned 

Now, concerning endeavour, know, there are who 
think they endeavour sufficiently, when they do not; 
others that they do not, when yet they do. The 
first, if they, to the sluggard's longing and wishing, 
do join an outward conformity to the means of grace, 
as to hearing the word, praying now and then, and 
receiving the sacraments, and if they do some thinga 
which may be don-e with little labour and difficulty, 
and if to these they add some slight essays to ab- 
stain from sii^, and to do well, they think they en- 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


deavour much, whereas, if they do no more, all is td 
little purpose. 

For, to endeavour, is to exercise the head with 
study how, and the heart with will and desire, and 
the hand and tongue, and the whole outward man, 
to do their utmost, putting to their whole strength, 
their whole skill, and their whole will, to subdue 
sin, and to be strengthened in grace, and built up 
more and more in knowledge, faith, and holiness; 
removing or breaking through every hindrance, 
shunning all occasions of evil, or whatsoever may 
strengthen sin, and seeking after, and embracing, 
all opportunities and means to be strengthened in 
the inward man. If one means will not be sufficient, 
if there be others to be used, they will find out and 
use them also; if they cannot attain their good 
purposes at once, they will try again and again. 
They who endeavour indeed, not only seek to ob- 
tain their ends, but they strive in seeking, as hard 
students, as good warriors and wrestlers, and as those 
who run in a race do, to that they may obtain that 
which they study, fight, wrestle, and run for. It 
is not a bare wishing or woulding for a fit, or a 
cold and common seeking, but an earnest striving to 
enter in at the strait gate, that giveth admittance 
into the way of holiness, and into the kingdom of 
heaven. It is a studying and exercising a man's 
self, as in a matter of life and death; and as H wise 
tnan would do for a kingdom, where there is possi- 
bility and hope of obtaining it. 

Others, who indeed endeavour to keep a good 
conscience toward God and fnan, yet because they 
oatinot bring into act always that which they labour 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 

214 • 

for, or because they see oversights, neglects, or some 
weakness in their endeavours, they think that they 
endeavour to no purpose. Whereas, if they do what 
they can, according to the strength of grace received, 
or according to the condition or state wherein they 
are, which is sometimes better, sometimes worse, if 
they see their failings in their endeavours, and be«- 
wail them, and do ask pardon, resolving by God's 
grace to strive to do better, this is true endeavour, 
this is that which Ood, for Christ's sake, doth accept 
of. For, since endeavour is a part of our holiness, 
you must not think that it will be perfect in this 
life: if it be true, you must thank God, for he will 
accept of that. 

A man's endeavour may be as true, and as much, 
when yet he cannot perform what he endeavours to 
do, as it is at other times, when, with the endeavour, 
he hath also ability to perform. As you may see 
in natural endeavours. The same man, being well 
in health, if he fall and break not his arms or legs, 
he endeavours to get up, and readily doth it; but if 
he be weak, or if falling he breaketh his arms and 
legs, he also hath a will and desire to rise, and striv- 
eth earnestly to help himself, but cannot do it effec- 
tually, and in that case, he is fain to lie until he see 
help coming, then he will call, and entreat help, and 
when one giveth him the hand, though he cannot 
rise of himself, yet he will lift up himself as well as 
he can: doth not this man, in his latter condition, as 
truly endeavour as he did in his former? So it is 
with a spiritual man in his spiritual endeavours. If 
he essay to do what he can, and call to God for his 
help, and when he hath it, is glad, and willing U 

Digitized by CjOOQ IC 


improve it, this is the true endeavour, which, con- 
curring with the two former acts, purpose and desire, 
giveth proof of uprightness. 

There is a twofold uprightness; the one of the 
heart and person, the other of the action: I have 
described the uprightness of the person. And then 
an action is upright, when a man doth not dissemble, 
but means as he saith, intending as much as is pre- 
tended, whether it be in actions toward God or roan. 
The first is, when the heart of man agreeth with, 
and in the intention thereof is according to, the will 
of God. The second is, when the outward act 
agreeth with, and is according to, the heart of him 
that doth it. 

III. Rules to judge of Uprightness, 

4 That you may rightly judg» whether you are 
upright or not, first, take certain rules for direction, 
to rectify your judgment; then observe the marks of 

1. Uprightness being part of sanctification, is not 
fully perfect in any man in this life, biit is mixed 
with some hypocrisy, conflicting one against the 
other. It hath its degrees, sometimes more, some- 
times less; in some things more, in some things less, 
according as each part prevaileth in the opposition, 
and according as the Christian groweth or decay eth 
in other principal and fundamental graces. 

2. A man is not to be called on upright man, or 
a hypocrite, because of some few actions wherein he 
may show uprightness or hypocrisy. For a hypo- 
crite may do some upright actions, in which he doth 

Digitized byCriOOQlC 


not dissemble, though he cannot be said to do them 
in uprightness; as Jehu destroyed the wicked house 
of Ahab, and the idolatrous priests of Baal, with all 
his heart. And the best man may do some hypo- 
critical and guileful actions, as David did in the 
matter of Uriah. It is not the having of hypoc- 
risy that denoteth a hypocrite, but the reigning of 
it, which is, when it is not seen, confessed, bewailed, 
and opposed. 

A man should judge of his uprightness rather by 
his will, bent, and the inclination of his soul, and 
good desires, and true endeavours to well-doing in 
the whole course of his life, than by this or that par- 
ticular act, or by his power to do. David was thus 
esteemed " a man according to God's own heart," no 
otherwise; rather by the goodness of the general 
course of his life, than by particular actions: for 
in many things he offended God, and polluted his 
soul, and blemished his reputation. 

3. Although uprightness is' to be judged by the 
inward frame of the heart towards God, yet, where- 
soever uprightness is, it will show itself in men's 
actions in the course of their lives. Only observe 
• this, that in judging your actions, you must not 
judge them so much by the greatness of the quanti- 
ty, as by the soundness and goodness of the quality. 
If it be good in truth, according to the measure of 
grace received, God accepteth it in Christ. She 
hath done what she could, saith our Saviour, Mark 
xiv. 8. A little sound and true fruit, though weak 
in comparison, is far better than many fair blossoms, 
-yea, than plenty of grapes, if they be wild and sour. 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


IV. Particular Marks of Uprightness* 

That you may conceive more distinctly, ^nd better 
remember, the signs of uprightness, I reduce them 
to these heads. They are taken, 1. From univer- 
sality of respect to all God's will. 2. From a special 
respect to such things as God requireth specially. 
3« From a will and desire to please God in one place 
as well as another; in secret as well as openly. 
4. From a constancy of wiil to please God at one 
time, as well as another. 5. From the true causes 
from whence good actions flow. 6. From the effects 
that follow well-doing. 7. From the effects that 
follow evil-doug. 8. From the conflict which shall 
be found between uprightness and hypocrisy. 

I. The upright man is universal in his respect to 
the whole will of God. 

(1.) In an unfeigned desire and endeavour to 
know what manner of man he ought to be, and what 
he ought to d6. He would know and believe any 
one part of God's will, so far as it may concern 
himself, as well as another; threats as well as pro- 
mises; commandments as well as either; and that 
not some, but all the threats, all the promises, and 
all the commandments. ^^ Coming tp the light" 
readily, ^^ that his deeds may be made manifest." 

He is willing to know and believe what he should 
do, as well as what he should have and hope for. 
But the hypocrite doth not so, he winketh with his 
eyes, and is willingly ignorant of that sin, which he 
would not leave; and of that duty, which he would 
not do; and of that judgment, which he would not 
K 31 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 



feel. He is willing to know the promises of the 
gospel, but willingly ignorant of th« precepts of the 
gospel, and of the conditions annexed to the promises. 
(2.) His universal respect to God's will, is not 
only to know, but to do, and to' submit unto it in all 
things; willing to leave and shun every sin; willing 
to do every thing which he knoweth to be his duty; 
willing to bear patiently, thankfully, and fruitfully 
every correction wherewith the Lord doth exercisis 
him. He disliketh sin in all. He loveth grace 
and goodness in all. He would keep a good con- 
science in all acts of religion towards God, and in 
ail acts of righteousness and sobriety towards and 
amongst men. He would forbear not only those 
sins to which his nature is not so much inclined, or 
to which his condition in life afforded not so many 
temptations, but those to which his nature and con- 
dition of life most carry him; he will cross himself 
in his dearest lust, especially his formerly beloved sin, 
his own sin, as David calleth it. Neither dioth he 
endeavour to abstain from those vices which m^y 
bnug loss, and are out of credit, which human laws 
punish, and all men cry out against, but such as, 
through the iniquity of the times, are in countenance 
with the greatest, and practised by most, the for«' 
bearance whereof may threaten and procure danger 
and discredit; the doing whereof may promise and 
promote much worldly gain and honour. Moreover, 
the upright roan doth not only strive to do those 
holy and virtuous actions which are in credit^ and 
for his advantage in the world, but those also which 
may expose him to disgrace, and loss even of his li£e 
And livelihood. He W4>uld abstain as wiellironi leas 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


evils^ even firom appearance of evils, as from gross 
sins; and would so do the greater things of the law, 
as not to leave the other undone. But the hypo- 
crite is not so^ there is some sin he will not leave, 
some duty he will not do, &c. Follow the opposi- 

2. An upright man is known by this : Where God 
hath laid a special charge, there he wiH have a first 
and special respect to it; as, to " seek the kingdom 
of God and hi& righteousness," that one thing ne- 
cessary; and to show ^ special love to tlie house- 
hold of faith; to be first and most at home, reform- 
ing himself, pulling the beam out of his own eye ; 
to be most zealous for matter of substance in reli- 
gion, and less in matter of ceremony and circum- 
stance. Lastly, his chief care will be to apply him- 
self to a conscientious discharge pf the duties of his 
particular calling, knowing that a man hath no more 
conscience nor goodness in truth, than he hath will 
and desire in it to show the works of his particular 
place and calling. The hypocrite is contrary in all 
these. . 

3. The upright man endeavoureth to approve 
himself to God, as well in secret, as openly; as well 
in the inward man, as in the outward; as well in 
thought, as in word and in deed. But it is quite 
otherwise with the hypocrite; if he may seem good 
to men^ it is all he careth for. 

4. The upright man is constant; his will is, that 
he might always please God. He doth as much 
endeavour to approve himself to God in prosperity 
as in adversity, and, even tbeuj^ studieth how to be 
abl.Q tp hold out before God, if his state should «\ux. 


Digitized by V:iOOQ iC 


I do not mean such a constancy as admitteth of no 
intermission or obstructions in his Christian course. 
A constant running spring may be hindered in its 
course for a time, by damming it up, yet the spring 
will approve itself to run constantly, for it will be 
still thrusting to get through, or to get under, or^ 
if it can do none of these, it will raise itself in time, 
according to its strength, and get over all hinderances, 
and will bear down all before it, and run with a more 
full stream afterwards, by as much as it was before 
interrupted: so it is with an upright man. But the 
hypocrite's religion is by fits and starts; as he calleth 
not on God at all times, so it is with all other his 
goodness, it is but as the seed in stony ground, and 
amongst thorns, and, as rnorning dew, it endureth 
but for a season. 

5. An upright man is known by the causes from 
which all his good actions spring, and to which they 

(1.) That which causes the upright man to endea- 
vour to keep a good conscience alway, is an inward 
principle and power of grace, causing him, through 
faith in Christ Jesus, in and from whom, as the 
root of all grace, he bringeth forth fruit; and from 
love and fear of God, and from conscience of the 
commandment, to do the will of God. Not only 
fear of wrath, and hope of reward, causeth him to 
abstain from evil and do good, but chiefly love of 
God, and conscience of duty. 

Now, if you would know when you obey out of 
conscience of the commandment, and from love of 
Christ, consider, 1. Whether your heart and mind 
stand bent to obey every of God's commandments 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


which/ you know, as well as any, and that because 
the same God, who hath given one, hath given all. 
If so, then you obey out of conscience. 2. Consider 
what you do, or would do, when Christ, and his true 
religion, and his commandments go alone, and are 
separated from all outward credit, pleasure, and pro- 
fit. Do you, or will you then cleave to Christ, and 
to the commandment? Then love of Christ, fear 
of God, and conscience of God's command, was, and 
is, the true cause of your well-doing; especially if 
you choose and endeavour this, when all these are 
by tho world clothed with peril and contempt. 
3. Consider whether you can go on in the strict 
course of godliness alone, and whether you resolve 
to do it though you shall have no company, but all 
or most go in the way of sin, and also persuade you 
thereunto. When you will walk with God alone, 
and without other company, this showeth that your 
walking with God is for his sake. So walked Noah, 
and Elijah, as he thought. 

But the cause of a hypocrite's well-doing is only 
goodness of nature, or good education, or mere civi- 
lity, or some common gifts of the Spirit, or self-love, 
slavish fear, or the like. See this in Ahab's repen- 
tance, in Jehu's zeal, and Joash's goodness. Ahab's 
humiliation was only from a slavish fear of punish- 
ment. The zeal of Jehu was only from earthly joy 
and carnal policy; for had it been in zeal for God, 
he would as well have put down the calves at Dan 
and Bethel, as slain the priests of Baal. And the 
goodness of Joash was chiefly for Jehoiadah's sake, 
whom he reverenced, and to whom he esteemed him- 
self beholden for his kingdom, and not for God's 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 

sake. For the scripture satth, that after Jehoiadah's 
death, the princes solicited him, and he yielded to 
them, and fell to idolatry; added this also, he com- 
manded Zechariah the high priest, Jehoiadah's son, 
to be slain, because, in the name of the Lord^ he 
reproved him for his sin. 

(2.) The upright man's actions, as they come from 
a good beginning, so they are directed to a good end, 
namely, the pleasing of God, and the glory of his 
name, as his direct, chief, and utmost end; not that 
a man might not have respect to himself, and to his 
neighbour also, proposing to himself his own and his 
neighbour's good, as one end of his actions, some- 
times; but these must not be proposed either only, or 
chiefly, or as the ultimate end, but only as they are 
subordinate to those chief ends, and are the direct 
means to promote God's glory. For, so far as a 
man's health and welfare, both of body and soul, lie 
directly in the way to glorify God, he may, in that 
respect, aim at them in his apt ions. Our Saviour 
Christ, in an inferior and secondary respect, aimed 
at his own glory, and at the salvation of man, in the 
work of man's redemption, when he said, " Glorify 
thy Son;" and prayed, that his church might be glori- 
fied. Here he had respect unto himself, and unto 
man; but when hesaith, "That thy Son may glorify 
thee," here he made God's glory his utmost end, 
<kx\i the only mark which for itself he aimed at. 

The upright man's aim at his own, and at his 
neighbour's good, is not for themselves, as if his 
desire ended and was terminated there, but in refer- 
ence to God, the chief good, and the highest end 
of «ll things. 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 

Indeed, svich is God's wisdom and goodness^ that 
he hath set before man evil and good: evil) whiel» 
folio wetb upon displeasing and dishonouring him by 
sin, that man might fear and^avoid sin; good» and 
recompense of reward, which followeth upon faith 
and obedrenee, th^t he might hope, and be better in* 
dnced to believe and obey* This Ood did,, knowing 
that man hath need of all reasonable helps to deter 
him from evil, and to allure him to good. N^w, God 
having set these before us, we may, and ought, for 
these good purposes, to set them before ofirselvesi 
Yet the upright man standeth so fully and only to 
God, that, so far as he kuoweth hi&own heart, he is 
thusresolved, that if there were no fear of punishment, 
nor hope of reward, if there were neither heaven not 
hell, he would endeavour to please and glorify God, 
even out of that duty he oweth to him, and from 
that high and awful estimation which be hath of 
God's sovereignty, and irom that entire love which 
he beareth unto him. He that habitually in doing, 
of common and earthly business, though they concern 
his own good, hath a will to do them with a heavenly 
miud, and to a heavenly end, certainly standeth well, 
and is uprightly resolved, although, in temptations 
and fears, he doth not always feel the said resolution. 

But the hypocrite doth not so: he only or chiefly 
aimeth at himself, and in his aim serveth himself in 
lill that he doth. If he look to God's will and glory, 
as sometimes he will pretend, he maketh that but 
the bye, and not the main end; he seeketh God's 
#H1 and glory not for itself, but for himself; not for 
Ood^s sake, but for his own. Thus did Jehu. 
• 6. An upright man may know he is upright, by 
the effects that follow upon his well-doing. 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


(L) His chief inquiry is, and he doth observe^ 
what good Cometh by it, and what glory God hath 
had, or may have, rather than what earthly credit 
and benefit he hath gotten to himselfr Or if this 
latter thrust in itself before the other, as it will oft- 
times in the best, he is greatly displeased with him- 
self for it. The hypocrite is not so; all that he in- 
quireth after, and is pleased with, after he hath done 
a good deed, is, what applause it hath amongst men. 

(2.) When an upright man hath done a praise- 
worthy action, he is not pufied up with pride and 
high conceit of his own worth, glorying in himself, 
but he is humbly thankful unto God. Thankful, 
that God hath enabled him to do any thing with 
which he will be well pleased, and accept as well 
done. Humble and low in his eyes, because of the 
manifold failings in that good work, and because he 
hath done it no better, and because whatsoever good 
he did, it was by the grace and power of God, not by 
any power of his own. Thus David showed his 
uprightness in that solemn thanksgiving, whe£i he 
said, '^ But who am I, and what is my people, that 
we should be able to offer so willingly after this sort?" 

But it is otherwise with the hypocrite; for either 
he ascribeth all the glory of his good work to him- 
self, or if he seem to be thankful, it is with a proud 
thankfulness, like that of the Pharisee, accompanied 
with disdain of others, who, in his opinion, do not 
so well as himself. 

(3.) The upright man having begun to do well, 
doth not set down his rest there, but striveth to do 
more, and to be better; he, with the apostle, forget- 
teth what is behind, looking to that which is before, 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


not thinking that yet he hath attained to that he 
should do. So many as are indeed perfect and up- 
right do thus. But the hypocrite, if he hath some 
flash of common illumination, and some little taste 
of those things which concern the kingdom of hea- 
ven, and hath attained to a form of godliness, he 
tfaiuketh that he hath enough, and needeth nothing. 
So did Laodicea. 

7. The upright man and the hypocrite are dis- 
tinguished by their different affections and carriages, 
after that they have fallen into sin, for in many 
things we sin all. As the upright man did not 
commit his sin with that full consent of will, which 
the hypocrite may do, and often doth, but always 
with some reluctance and opposition of will, though 
not always felt and observed, insomuch that he can 
say. It was not he, but sin that dwelt in him ; so, 
after he is fallen into sin, when his sin is made 
known to him, he doth not hide, excuse, or defend 
his sin, or if he do, it is but seldom in comparison, 
and but faintly, and not long, his conscience smiting 
him when he doth it, or quickly after it. 

An upright man will not be much or long angry 
with any who admonish him of his sin, yea, though 
an enemy, by malicious railing, call his sin to re* 
membrance, as Shimei did to David, even therein 
he can see God, and can,- for the most part, abstain 
from revenge, and will stir up his heart to godly 
sorrow for his sin. ^ But if any, like Abigail, shall j 
in wisdom and love, admonish him, he blesseth God 
that sent iiim or her; he blesseth and maketh good, 
use of the admonition, and'doth bless the admonisher^ 
and take it for a special kindness. Tbusj David, a 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 

man according to God's own heart, as he displayed 
human frailties iir hh many and great falls, sa he 
gave clear proof of his uprightness, sooner or later, 
by his behaviour after his falls. He could say, and 
his repentance did prove it, that though, to his grief 
and shame, sometimes he departed from God, yet 
he did not wickedly depart from God. Though 
upright men be transgressors, yet they are not wicklerf 
transgressors: there is great difference between these 
two. And though there be evil in their actions, 
yea, in some of them filthiness, and grievous iniquity, 
yet in their filthiness is not lewdness, as God com- 
plains of Judah, that is, they are not obstinate and 
rebellious, standing out against the means of purging 
jind reclaiming them. For when God doth correct 
them by his word or providence, they are willing to 
reform whatever is discovered to be amiss. 

Moreover, although the upright man may be 
often drawn into a way that is not good, and often, 
through his weakness and heedlessness, falls into a 
state that is not good; yet he doth not set himself 
in a way which is not good, nor yet, like the swine^ 
delight to wallow and lie in it. When an upright 
rtian is fallen, and hath recovered out of his spiritual 
swoon, when he is come to himself, he is like a lAan 
Sensible of his bones broken or out 6f joint; he is 
not well, nor at quiet, nor his own man, until he 
hath confessed his sin, repented of it, asked pardon 
and grace, and renewed his peace with God. An 
upright man is likewise like the needle of the" 
mariner's cortipass, which may, by violent mtytitnr, 
aoraetimes swerve to the west, or to the east; btit 
tflandeth steady no way hut towards the north, and^ 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 

■it it he truly touched with a loadstone, hath bo rest 
but in that one point; so an upright man may, 
through boisterous temptations, and strong allure- 
ments, oftentimes look towards the pleasure, gain, 
and glory of this present world : but because he is 
Ituiy touched with the sanctifying Spirit of God, he 
still inclineth towards God; and hath no rest until 
Ifia mind is steadily fixed on Christ and heaven. 

~ But it is not so with the hypocrite; he is in each 
particular directly contrary. I leave the full and 
pat^ieular application thereof to yourself. 

8r You will find the most evident mark of 
uprightness from your sense of hypocrisy in your* 
self, and from your conflict with it. The upright 
man is sensible of too much hypocrisy and guile in 
bis h^art. Yea, so much, that oftentimes he 
maketh it a question whether he have any upright^ 
ness; and, until he hath brought himself to due 
tnal- by the balance of the sanctuaryj the word and 
godpel of Christ, he feareth he is still a hypocrite. 
But there is nothing which- he would oppose more, 
nothing which he complaineth of, or prayeth to God 
more against,- than this hypocrisy, nor is there any 
thing he longeth after, laboureth and prayeth for 
more, than that he may love and serve the Lord in 
sincerity. All this plainly showeth, that this man 
¥fbtrld be upright, which hearty desire so to be, is 
upright^esrs itself. 

The hypocrite contrariwise, neglect^h to observe 
his guile and false-heartedness in religion: or if be 
can dee it, be is Hot much troubled at it, but suflEereth 
i¥ tch reign in him: and as he boasteth of his good 
fK^imle, ao Itkei^de of his good heart, ai^ good 

Digitized byC:iOOQlC 


meaning in all that he doth, except when his lewd- 
ness and hypocrisy are discovered to his face, flatter- 
ing himself in his own eyes,, till his iniquity is found 
to be hateful. 

Before I leave this, • I will answer a question or 
two, concerning judging of uprightness by these 

(1.) Whether an upright man can at all times 
discern his uprightness, by these or any other marks? 

Ordinarily, If he will impartially compare him- 
self with these evidences, he may. But sometimes 
it so happeneth that he cannot; namely, in the case 
of spiritual desertions, when God, for his neglect of 
keeping his peace with him, is hidden from him for 
a time, and when in his displeasure he looketh 
angrily, and writeth bitter things against him. 
Likewise, when he is in some violent and prevalent 
temptation, and thereby cast into a kind of spiritual 
swoon, and in such like cases. But a. man must 
not judge himself to be dead, because when he is 
asleep, or in a swoon, he hath no feeling, or sense 
of life. 

(2.) Whether is it necessary that a man should 
find all these marks of uprightness in him, if he be 

No. Although, if he were in a condition to judge 
and try himself thoroughly, he might find them all 
in him; yet if he find most, or but some of these, 
he should comfort himself with those, until he find 
the rest. 

Take heed therefore that you do not as many, 
who, when they hear and see many signs given of 
this, or any other needful grace^ if they caonot 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


approve themselves by all, they will make a question 
whether they have the grace or not. One may give 
you twenty signs of natural life, as seeing, hearing, 
talking, breathing, &c. What though you cannot 
prove yourself by all? Yet if you know you feel, 
or breathe, or move, you know you are alive by any 
one of them. 

(3.) What is to be done when you cannot find 
that you are upright, whereas heretofore sometime 
you did hope that^you were? 

Do not presently conclude you are a hypocrite; 
but look back to former proofs of uprightness. And 
though you have, for the present, lost your evidence 
and assurance of heaven, yet give not over your 
possession of what you have had, nor your hope. 
A man that hath once had possession of house and 
lands, if his estate be questioned, will seek out his 
evidence; and^ suppose that he hath laid aside, or 
lost his evidence thereof; yet he is not such a fool 
as to give over his possession, or his right; but will 
seek till he find his evidences, or if he cannot find 
them, will search the records, and get them from 
thence. So must you in this case; you must seek 
for your evidence again. However, cleave fast to 
God and to his promises; frequently renew your 
acts of faith on the Lord Jesus Christ, and continue 
to persevere in the ways of godliness as you are 
able, and you shall not be long, before you shall 
know that you are upright: or if you attain not to 
this, yet be sure the Lord will know you to })e his, 
though you do not so certainly know that he is 
yours. But more of this when I shall speak of 
peace of conscience. 

Digitized byC:iOOQlC 


' But in trying my uprightness, I find many of 
the signd of bypoci'isy in me. I do not find myself 
to be s6 universal in my respect to all God's com- 
mandments as I should; I do not bate all sins alike; 
I find myself inclined to one sin more than another^' 
and I am readier to neglect some duty than other; 
I cannot so thoroughly seek God's kingdom as I 
should; I am readier to find fault with others, than 
to amend my own conduct, &c. I find that I am 
not so constant as I ought to be in holy duties, and 
I have too much respect to myself in all that I do, 
and too little to God's glory. In reading all the 
notes of hypocrisy, except the last, I find hypocrisy, 
nay, much hypocrisy to be in me; must T not there- 
fore judge myself to be a hypocrite? 

No. For truth of uprightness may be in the 
same person, in whom there is sense of much 
hypocrisy; nay this, to feel hypocrisy with dislike,^ 
is the certain evidence of truth of uprightness. 
Indeed, if you felt not thus much, you might fear 
you were not upright. All that you have said, if 
it be true, only proveth that you have hypocrisy 
remaining in you, and that you feel it. You must 
remember I told you, that not the having, but the 
reigning of hypocrisy, maketh a hypocrite. Besides^, 
a man may have a universal respect to all God^s 
"commandments, and yet not an equal respect to all. 
If you see and bewail your sin, and fight against 
your hypocrisy when you feel it, assure yourself 
you are no hypocrite. 

(4.) What if a man finds indeed, by these notes 
of hypocrisy, that it doth reign in him ! 

He must know that he is for the present ha^ 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


of God, and ifi a damnable state, yet his state is not 
desperate. If the hypocrite forsake his hypocrisy, 
and become upright, he shall not die for his 
hypocrisy; if this be true of a sinner's forsaking all 
sin, then, it is true of this in particular, of forsaking 
his hypocrisy; but in the uprightness wherein he 
liveth, he shall live. What Christ ^aid to hypo- 
critical and lukewarm Laodicea, that I Say to alF 
such: they must be zealous, they must amend, and 
be upright; hypocrisy is as pardonable as any other 
sin to him who is penitent, and believeth in Christ 

By this which I have written, you may plainly 
see, (1.) That you ought to be upright; (2.) What 
it is to be upright ; (3.) Whether you be upright or 
not. It concerns you therefore to hate and avoid 
hypocrisy, and to love and embrace sincerity. Which 
that you may do, make use of the motives and means 
which follow irt the n^xt sections. 

V.' Dissuativesfi'om Hypocrisy^ and Motives to 

If you would abandon hypocrisy, consider the 
dissuasives \ taken from the evils and mischiefs that 
accompany it Where it reigneth, aiid how troublesome 
a»d hatuAil it ii» where it doth not reign. 

The evils of hypocrisy, where it reigneth. 

1 . Hypocrisy taketh away all the goodness of the 
best actions. They are good only in name, not in 
deed. The repentance and obedience of a hypo- 
crite is none, because' it is feigned; his faith is 
no faith^ because it is fiot unfeigned; his love is no 

Digitized byCriOOQlC 


love, because it is not from a pure heart, without dis- 
simulation. Judge the same of all other graces and 
good actions of a hypocrite. 

2. All the good actions of a hypocrite are, 
together with himself, wholly lost. Such as preach- 
ing, hearing, praying, almsgiving, &c. 

3. Hypocrisy^ in whom it reigns, doth not only 
take. away all goodness from the best gifts and actions, 
and cause the loss of all reward from God, but it 
poisoneth and turueth the best actions into most 
loathsome and abominable sins. Insomuch, that in 
those good works wherein the hypocrite seemeth to 
make haste to heaven, he still runneth post to hell. 
For such allowed hypocrisy is worse than professed 
wickedness. It is so odious in God's sight, that for 
it he will plague those in whom it ruleth with his 
severest judgments. For the hypocrisy of men pro- 
fessing the truth, bringeth the name, religion, and best 
services of God into disgrace and contempt, and 
causeth the best actions and best men to be suspected. 
For such as have not spiritual wisdom to judge rightly, 
stumble thereat, and forbear the exercises of reli- 
gion, and the company of those that be religious, 
ignorantly judging all who profesfs that religion to be 
alike. Besides, hypocrisy is high treason against 
God; for it is a gilding over, and setting the king's 
stamp upon base metal. It is tempting and mock- 
ing of God to his face. A sin so abominable, that 
his holy justice cannot endure it. 

God's just judgments upon hypocrites. 

4. God's judgments on such hypocrites are mani- 
fold. For this cause God giveth them over to 
believe lies; even popery, or any other damnable 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


error or heresy. Hence it is that God giveth 
them up many times to fall from seeming goodness 
to real wickedness, and from one evil to another, 
even unto final apostacy. And at last, when God 
taketh away a hypocrite's soul, he is sure not only 
to lose his hope, which adds much to his hell, but 
to be made to feel that which he would not fear, 
being ranked with those sinners, who shall be 
punished with the greatest severity, in the eternal^ 
vengeance of helUfire. For after that a hypocrite 
hath played the civil and religious man for a while 
upon the stage of this world, his last act, when his. 
life is ended, is to be, indeed, and to act to the life, 
the part of an incarnate and tormented devil. He 
shall have his portion with the devil and his angels. 
When ^^ fearfulness hath surprised the hypocrites : 
who shall dwell with the devouring fire! who shall 
dwell with everlasting burnings!" saith the prophet. 
Happy were it for them, if this warning might 
effectually awaken them out of this damning security? 

The evils of hypocrisy, though it doth not reign. 

Consider likewise; that hypocrisy doth much 
harm, even where it doth not reign, and that more 
or less, according as it is more or less mortified. 

For, ]. It bringeth the soul into a general con* 
sumption of grace; no sin more so. 2. It blindeth 
the mind, and insensibly hardeneth the heart; no 
sin more. 3. It maketh a man formal and careless 
in the best actions. 4. It causeth fearful sins, and 
decays of grace. 5. It deprives a mau of peace of 
conscience in such a manner, that a spiritual phy- 
sician can hardly suggest any hope or comfort to 
him on whose conscience doth lie the guilt of 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


hypocrisy ^ yea, hardly to btm that dotb but fear he 
w guilty: for he refuseth the comfort of his good 
affections and actions, sayings ^1 that I did was but 
iti hypocrisy* Lastly, Besides tbaty it bringcth 
many temporal judgments; it catiseth a man to lose 
many of his good works dond ii^ hypocrisy, though, 
through God's mercy, he lose not hifnself, because 
he is still found in Christ, and Christ's spirit of 
Uprightness reign eth in him. 

Motives to uprightnessk 

Now to induce you to love uprightness, and to 
labour after it; consider the giDod which accompanieth 
uprightness: First, temporal and outward; but, 
Secondly, and chiefly, that which is spiritual and 

First, Uprightness hath the promise of fhis life. 
It is a means to keep ofF judgments, or in due time 
to remove them. If affliction lik^ a dark night 
over-spread the upright, for their corruption and 
trial for a time, yet light is sown for them, and in 
due time will arise unto them. The upright shall 
itot want health, wealth, friends, or anything that 
cAn be good for them. Moreover, this uprightness 
doth not only provide well for a person's self : but if 
any thing can procure a blessing to his children, and 
his children's children, uprightness will. The Holy 
Ghost saith, the generation of the upright shall be 

Secondly, The spiritual blessings which belong 
to the upright, are manifold. 

1. The upright man is God's favourite, even his 
- 2. He is hereby assured of his salvation. For 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 

althodgh an upright mai^fafll rrrto tnatfy gHeVoieis sinf, 
yet presumptuous sins shall not reign oter himr; 
he shall be kept from the great transgression; be 
shall never sin the sin unto death; yea, he rfiall be 
kept from the donrinion of every sin. 

3. By uprightness a man is strength^fried in the 
inward man; it being that girdle which buckleth and 
holdeth together the chief parts of the Cbfistitfii 

I armour. Nay, it is that which giveth efficacy to 
; every piede of that armour, it strengthencth th« 

back and loins, yea, the very heart of him that is 

begirt with it. 

4. He that is upright, is ^ure to have his prayers 
heard, and to be made able to profit by the word of 

j God, and by all his holy ordinances. ** Do not 
my words," saith God, " do good to him that walks 
uprightly !" 

5. The upright man's services to God in prayer, 
hearing, receiving sacraments, &c. though performed 
with much weakness and imperfections, shall, through 
Christ, be accepted of God. Nay, where there is 
not power, the will of the upright man is taken for 
the deed; and where there is power and deed both^ 
even there the uprightness and readiness of the will 
is taken for more than the deed, according to that 
commendation of them, who were said not only to 
do, but to be willing a year ago, 2 Cor. viii. For 
many may do good things, who yet do them not with 
an upright will and ready mind. 

6. The upright man hath always matter of 
boldness before men. He can make an apology 
and defence for himself against the slanders of 
wicked men, and against the accusations of Satan^ 

Digitized by LjOOQ IC 


who are ready upon every slight occasion, to 
reproach him as a hypocrite, and say, that all which 
he doth is but in hypocrisy; but he can give all the 
lie, who charge him with dissimulation or hypocrisy. 
He knoweth more of his hypocrisy than they can 
tell him; he findeth fault with, and accuseth himself 
for it, more than they can do: yet this he can say, 
he alloweth it not, he hateth it, and his heart is 
upright towards God. He careth not though his 
adversary write a book against him. He hath his 
defence; if men will receive it, they may; if not, he 
dareth to appeal to heaven. For his record is on 
high. He hath always a witness both within him, 
and in heaven for him. 

7. Uprightness is an excellent preventer and 
cure of despair, arising from accusations of con- 
science; even of a wounded spirit, of which Solomon 
saitb, who can bear it? For either it keepeth it off; 
or, if it be wounded, this uprightness in believing, 
and in willingness to reform and obey, is a most 
sovereign means to cure and quiet it, or at least will 
allay the extremity of it. Not but an upright man 
may have trouble of mind, and that to some ex- 
tremity; but he may thank himself for it, because he 
will not see and acknowledge that uprightness which 
he hath, and doth not properly apply it, or cherish 
it; which if he would do, there is nothing, next to 
the precious blood of Jesus Christ, would answer 
the charges of his accusing conscience, or bring 
more feeling comfort to his soul, sooner or better. 

8. The upright man hath a holy boldness with 
God. Wheu Abimelech could say, " In the in- 
^^gfi^y of ^y h^art, and innocency of my bands 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


have I done thisj" he had boIdDess to expostulate 
and reason his case with God. An upright man in 
his sickness, or in any other calamity, yea at all 
times, when he needeth God's help, can be bold to 
come before God notwithstanding his sins that 
remaineth in him, his original sin, and his many 
actual transgressions. So did Hezekiah, upon his 
death bed, as he thought, saying, ^^ Remember, 
O Lord, I beseech thee, how I have walked before 
thee in truth, and with a perfect heart, and have 
done good in thy sight." So did Nehemiah, 
saying, " Remember me, O my God, concerning 
this, and spare me according to the greatness of thy 
mercy." This uprightness giveth boldness with 
God, but without all presumption of merit, as you 
see in good Nehemiah. 

' 9. Lastly, Whatsoever the upright man's begin- 
ning was, and whatsoever his changes have been in 
the times that have gone over him, both in the 
outward and inward man, in his progress of Chris- 
tianity; mark this, his end shall be peace. The 
last and everlasting part which he shall act indeed, 
and to the life, is, everlasting happiness. 
' And, to contract all these motives into a short, 
but final sum, " The Lord is a sun and shield; the 
Lord will give grace and glory: no good thing will 
he withhold from them that walk uprightly." 

VI. Means to subdue Hypocrisy and promote 

It remaineth now that you should know by what 
means you may abate and subdue hypocrisy; and 
may get, keep, and increase this grace of uprightness. 

Digitized by CjOOQ IC 

1. You must, by a due and serious coosideratioD- 
of the evils of hypocrisy, and advantages of upright- 
ness, fi;( in your heart, by the help of Christ, a 
loathing and detestation of the one, and an adrnira- 
tion^ love, and longing desire of the other,* with a 
sincere purpose of heart, by the grace of God, to be 
upright. This must first be wrought, for until a 
man stand thus affected, and resolved against hypo- 
crisy, and for uprightness, he will take no pains to 
be free from the one, nor yet to obtain the other. 

2. You must be sensible of that hypocrisy which 
yet ia in you, and of the want of uprightness, though 
not altogether, yet in great part. For no man will 
be at the pains to remove that disease whereof he 
thinketh he is suffiqieptly cured, though he judge it 
to be never so dangerous; nor yet to obtain that 
good of which he thinketh he hath enough already, 
though he esteem it never so excellent. 

Hitherto, both in the motives and means, I have 
endeavoured to gain the will: to will and resolve to 
be upright, and to be willing to use all good means 
to be upright. Now those means that will effect it 

3. Do your best to root out those vices that 
beget and nourish hypocrisy; and to plant in. their 
room those graces which produce and strengthen 

The chief vices are ignorance and unbelief, self- 
love, pride, and an irresolved and unsettled heart, 
unstable and not firmly resolved what to choose, 
whereby it wavers and is divided between two 
objects, dividing the heart between God, and some- 
thing else, either false gods, a man's self, or the 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC ' 


4vorld; wbeiiee it is, that the ycriptur^is call a 
hypocrite a roan that hath, a heart ani a ii^art, 
one that is double-minded. 

The graces are, a right knowledge of Go<I and 
of his will, and faith in him; self-denial, humility^ 
and lowly mindedness; stability, and singleness of 
heart towards God. For, the more clear light yo^ 
can get into y^ur mind, the more truth you will 
have in your will. And when you can so deny 
yourself, that you can quite renounce yourself, aud 
Brst give yourself to Christ, and unto God, then 
there will follow readiness of mind, and heartiness 
of will, to do whatsoever may please God. Also, 
the more humility you have in your mind, the mor^ 
uprightness you will have in your heart: for " while 
the soul is lifted up, that man's heart is i)ot upright 
in him," saith God. Lastly, when your eye i^ 
Bingle, and your heart one, and undivided, you wi}l 
not allow yourself to be in part for God, and in part 
for mammon, in part for God, and in part for your 
Ittsts, whether of the flesh, or of the world, or of the 
pride of life; you will not give your oame and lips 
to God, and reserve your heart for the world, the 
flesh, or the devil ; but by your will, God shall be 
allin all unto you. 

4. If you would be in earnest and in truth against 
sin, and for goodness, you must represent sin to 
your thoughts as the. most Kurtful, hateful, and 
most loathsome thing in the world; and must 
represent the obeying and doing of God's will to 
your mind, as the hest and most profitable, most 
amiable, most sweet and excellent thing in the 
world. Hereby ypu may affept your heart with a 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


thorough hatred and loathing of sin, and with a 
hearty love and delight in God's commandments. 
If you do thus, you cannot choose but shun sin, and 
follow after that which is good, not in pretence only, 
but in deed and in truth, with all your heart. For, 
a man is always hearty against what he truly hateth, 
and for what he dearly loveth. 

5. If you would be sincere, and do all your 
actions for God's glory, and for his sake, you must, 
by the light of God's word and works, fully inform 
and persuade yourself of God's sovereignty and 
absoluteness, and that, because h^ is the first ab- 
solute and chief good, he must needs be the last, 
the absolute and chief end of all ends. For he 
that is Alpha, must needs be the Omega, of all 
things. Since all things are of God, and since he 
made all things for himself, therefore you should, 
in all things . you do, be upright, intending God's 
glory as your principal and ultimate end in all things. 

6. Consider often and seriously, that how close 
and secret €oever hypocrisy may lurk, yet it cannot 
be hid from the eyes of God, with whom you have 
to do, and before whom you walk, who will bring 
every secret thing to judgment. Wherefore take 
continual notice, that you are in the sight of God 
that made your heart, who requireth truth of heart, 
and who perfectly knoweth the guile or truth of 
your heart. This will much further your upright- 
ness; for who can dare to promote and dissemble iii 
the presence of his Lord and Judge, who knoweth 
his dissimulation better than himself? 

7. Unite yourself more and more strongly unto 
your head Christ Jesus, by faith and love; con- 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


tinually renounce your own wisdom, righteousnets, 
and strength, that you may every day be more and 
more united unto him* Grow daily- in faith and 
hope in him* from whence you shall more and more 
partake of his fulness, even grace for grace. For 
the measure of your uprightness will usually be in 
proportion to your faith. For in proportion as the 
branch partake th more of the vine, so it draweth 
more virtue and beareth more good fruit. 

8; You must, with a holy jealousy of the 
deceitfulness of your heart, examine yourself often ; 
not only of what you have done, and now do, but of 
the motives and ends of your religious actions; as 
was before directed in the marks of uprightness. 
Lay yourself often to the rule of uprightness, that 
is the will of God, and finding yourself defective, 
study and labour to amend, and be upright, and that 
to the utmost of your power. 

9. Excuse that measure of uprightness which 
you have, and be more thankful for the little you 
have, than discouraged as many are, because they 
have no more. If you find yourself upright, be 
abundantly thankful, and resolve to keep and in- 
crease it by all means. Keep your heart thus with 
all diligence ; then, as all other graces, so this of 
uprightness, will increase in the using. 

10. Use the means of all means, the catholicon 
for all graces, which is prayer. Think not to gain 
uprightness by the power of your own might: but in 
the sense of your insufficiency, repair often to God 
by prayer; even to him who made your heart, in 
whose hands your I^eart is, who best knoweth the 
crooked windings and turnings of your heart, who 

L 31 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


only can amend and rectify your heart; who, because 
he delighteth in an upright heart, and hath com- 
manded you to seek it in the humble use of his 
means, will assuredly give it. Thus prayeth David; 
" Renew, O Lord, a right spirit within me;" and, 
" Let my heart be sound in thy statutes." . 


Of lauful Care, and of Freedom from 
ana:ious Care. 

When you have thus exercised a holy care to 
walk will) God in uprightness, according to the 
foregoing directions, it remaineth that you free 
yourself of all other care, and that you rest holily 
secure in God: enjoying your most blessed peace 
with him, according to the divine direction: " Be 
careful for nothing." 

The care which is commanded, and carefulness 
which is forbidden, differ thus: 

Lawful care. is an act of wisdom, whereby after 
a person hath rightly judged what he ought to do, 
what not, what good he is to pursue, and what evil 
is to be shunned ''or removed; he, accordingly with 
more or less intention and eagerness of mind, as the 
things to be obtained or avoided are greater or less, 
is careful to find out, and diligent to use lawful and 
fit means for the good, and against the evil, and that 
with all circumspection; that he may omit nothing 
which may assist him, nor commit any thing that 

Digitized by CjOOQIC 


may hmder him in bis lawful designs : which, when 
he hath done, he resteth quiet, and careth no 
farther; casting all care of success upon God, to 
whom it belongethy expecting a good issue upon the 
use of good means, yet resolving, to submit his will 
to God's will, whatever the success shall be. 

Sinful care is an act of fear and distrust, exercis- 
ing not only the head, but chiefly the heart, to the 
disquietude and disturbance thereof, causing a per- 
son inordinately and anxiously to pursue his desires, 
perplexing himself with doubtful and fearful thoughts 
about success. 

Lawful care may be called a provident care, and 
care of the head. 

Carefulness may be called a distrustful care, or a 
care of the heart. 

This provident care is not only lawful, but neces- 
sary; for without it, a man cannot posdiUy be secure, 
nor have reasonable hope of good success. 

This provident care is commended to you in the 
examples of the most wise and industrious brute 
creatures; and in the examples of the most prudent 
men. As of Jacob's care of his safety, how to 
escape the rage of his brother Esau, of St. Paul's 
care of the churches, of the Corinthians care and 
study to reform themselves; of the good noble 
woman's care to entertain the Lord's prophet; of 
the good house-wife's care of well ordering and 
maintaining hei family. The same good examples 
you have in the care of godly, unmarried men and 
women, bow to please God, and that they might he 
holy both in body and soul; and of Mary, who cared 
for the one thing needful. 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


Moreover, you are commanded tfals provklent 
care, namely, to << study to be quiet, to he no busy 
body, not idle ;" but to ** labour in a lawful calling 
the thing that is good." Also, to << walk honestly 
towards them who are without ;'' to endeavour so td 
walk towards God*s people that yOu ^* keep the unity 
of the Spirit in the bond of peace;" to provide for 
your own; to ^^ give diligence to make yourealling 
and election sure;" to ^* study to maintain good 
works." But amongst all, you are commanded 
chiefly to ^^ seek the kingdom of God, and his rights 
ousness," as the best means to free you from all 
unlawful cares. 

The properties of lawful care are these: 

I. Description qflawfid Care* 

1. The seat wherein lawful care resideth, is the 
head; for that is the seat of understanding, wisdom, 
and discretion; but carefulness is chiefly seated in 
the heart. 

2. Godly care is always about good and lawful 
things, it hath a good object, and good matter to 
work upon, and be conversant about: proposing al- 
ways some good thing to be the end, which it would 
attain. It is not a care about evil, as how to ** make 
provision for the flesh to fulfil the lusts thereof;" 
like Ahab's and Jezebel's carefulness for Naboth's 
vineyard and life : nor yet like Absalom's careful- 
ness, how to usurp his father's kingdom; nor Hke 
Haman's, how to destroy the Jews : neither is it like 
the carefulness of those of whom Solomon speaketh, 
<* who cannot sleep unless they do mischief" 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


8< This holy proyjdent e^re maketh choice only 
of lawful means, to obtain this lawful end, David 
had care of his own life; therefore he got iutell^ 
genee firom Jooatban of Saul's evil purposes towaids 
him* He did fly and hide himself from Saul, but 
would, hy no means lay Wolent hands upon bis 
ate^iuted iiord and king; thetugh he bad fiiir oppor* 
tunitif^ and strong solicitations to kill him, he fsUt 
i9g twice into his power^ and was earnestly called 
«pon by his servants to despatch him. 

Observe likewise Jacob's care to save himself, and 
aU that he bad, from the fury of his brother Esau, 
be used only fit and lawful means. For though a 
man's intention be ever so good, and the thing cared 
for be good, yet if the means to get it be unlawful, 
the care is evil. To care how to provide for yourr 
self and yours, is in itself good and needful; but so 
to ^re, that you run to unjust and inditect means, 
maketh it evil. To (»re bow to be saved, is an ex* 
ceilent care, but when you seek to attain it by ways 
of your own, or of other men's inventions ; as by 
idoUtrous worship* and voluntary religion, or look"^ 
ing to be saved by your own works, by purgatory, 
pope's pardons and indulgences, as the Papists do; 
this is a most sinful earefulneas* To care how to 
bring glory to God is the best care; but if> to'pro^ 
cure itt you use lying for God, or any other unlaw* 
ful means, it is an unholy care* 

4, This laudable holy cave, is a full and impartial 
oar€^9 even, of all things belonging to a person's con^- 
dition, It is not such a care of the body and state, 
as causeth neglect of the soul; neither is it such a 
care of the soul, as is attended with neglect of the 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


body, life, «sttt«, or name. It is not such a care of 
the private, as to neglect the public good; or of the 
public, as to neglect the private. It extendeth it- 
self to whatsoever God hath committed to our care ; 
both for ourselves and others. Thpse who care only 
for themselves, and for the things only of this life, 
sin in their care. Likewise those who seem to care 
only how to please God, and t<» 8av« their souls, yet 
weakly or carelessly ne^ect their bodies, and affiiirs 
of their families belonging to their place, or the 
common good of others in church or commonwealth, 
all these are partial, and do sin in their care. All 
worldlings and self-loving men offend in the first 
kind. All superstitious and indiscreetly devout men 
offend in the second kind: also all such who, for de- 
votion sake, neglect the necessary duties of their 
particular calling. 

d. Lawful care is a discreet and well-ordered 
care; it putteth diflference between things more or 
less good, and between things necessary or not ne- 
cessary, between things more necessary and less ne- 
cessary. In all things it would keep first due order, 
then due measure. 

L Caring most for God's glory, as Moses and 
Paul did, who cared more for the glory of God than 
for their own lives, honours, aivd welfare. . Next, it 
careth for that one thing needful, how the soul may 
be saved in the day of the Lard. As any thing is 
best, or more needful fer the present, that is cared 
for first {^nd chiefly. If all cannot be cared for, the 
less worthy things, the less necessary for the present, 
and those things to which we are least bound, should 
be omitted^ 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


2. As lawful care doth throagh discretion keep 
due order, so it keepeth due measure, seeking spirit- 
ual and heavenly things, with more diligence and 
zeal than those that be temporal and earthly;. caring 
lor the things of thid life with great moderation, 
without eagerness and greediness of desire; always 
proportioning the care to the goodness and worth of 
that which is to be cared for. Now, because . the 
world is to be loved and used as if we loved and 
used it not; it being of little worth in comparison; 
therefore the cares about it in comparison of the best 
and most necessary things must be, as if you cared 

II. Signs qfimmodeiale Care, 

Cares of the things of this life are inordinate and 
immoderate, 1. When they will not give men leave 
to take the comforts and natural refreshments of this 
Hfe, 86 sleep, meat, and drink, and other needful 
and lawful things; but especially when they: hinder 
them from the exercise, profitable use, or due per- 
formance oC religious duties. 

, 2. '.When they are first and chief in a man's 
thoughts; the mind always running upon them. 
-' 3. When they cause a man (out of his eager 
haste to be rich and to enjoy the world) to use un- 
lawful and indirect means, or to engage in dealing 
and trading beyond his skill, stock, and means well 
to manage the same. 

: 4. When they cause a man so to mind his worldly 
business, that he thinketh nothing well done, or safe, 
if his eye or band be not in it, and If it be not in his 

Digitized by VJiOQQ IC 


ran auioij; alUMMigli there b canae why others 
•honU be iiaed« and cntrvstedl with it, 

Laatly, This holy kodbUe csra is confieed within 
iu due nesawe and hottatdf^ as wed as fixed upea 
its proper objeets. It kaoweth its due Kaaits^ hew 
far to go» Slid where to stay: namdjf when it hath 
chosen a biwf«l ofc|e€t, and hath found out atid nsed 
kwfU aieansy and applieth itadf to one thing as wdl 
as another, in doe order and neasnre^ it stajreth 
there^ earing no farther; but waiteth pstientty God*s 
pleasure for good sueeess, casting all care at OTsnt 
and sttccesa upon God by prayer and sup^icationi 
with thanksgiving, 

IIL The Duty ofqvdet Trust m God. 

By what hath been said, you may see, that al- 
though you may and must take thought about mairfr 
things, according to the directions there giv^i; yet 
you must, ss the apostle saith, be careful in nothing, 
with an anxious, perplexing care. 

This is now the matter to be insisted on, via. 

That God would have ncme of his servants and his 

children to be inordinately careful about any thing; 

uor yet, when in obedience to his commandmrat^ 

and due observance of his providence^ they have 

diligently used lawful means for the attainmmit of 

all lawful things, that they should distress them^ 

selves at all about the issue or suoeess* He would 

'^ot that they should suffer their minds to hang in 

xbtful suspense and fear about them; but would 

. they should commit their ways unto him, and 

t in him, whether it he in the matter of their 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 

Mult, or bodies, of the things of this life, or of that 
which is to come. God freeth them from all care- 
fulness, and would that they should free themselves 
from it too. 

God would have you use all good means for this 
life, but without taking thought for to-morrow about 
what you shall eat, what you shall drink, what you 
shall put on, or what shall become of you i and youra 
another day. He would not have you be so dis^ 
trustful of him, as to take the care of futurity, the 
care of success from him, upon yourself, perj^exing 
your heart with doubt and fear till you find it. But 
his will is, that when you have done what you can, 
with a cheerful and ready mind, you should leave 
the whole matter of good or ill success to his care. 

In like manner, God would have you to use means 
to save your soul; but when you have so done, and 
continue so to do, he would have you care no farther. 
He would not have you to doubt and fear that all 
shall be in vain, and to no purpose; or that you 
shall not be saved notwithstanding. He would not 
that you should discourage and enfeeble your heart 
by taking thought about the issue of any tneih and 
temptations that may befal you before they do come^ 
for that is vain ; nor yet when they do come, for that 
is needless. 

In such cases, you nee4 only to serve 6o#s pre* 
vidence in the use of the present means of salvation, 
gaining as much grace and strength as you can against 
such times, improving that grace and strength which 
you have in- sueh timca of trial; but touching sue* 
cess, either how much grace and comfort you shall 
hav^ or when you shall have it, and whether you 

Digitized byV:iOOQlC 


shall hold out in the time of trial, or' J>e' saved in 
the end; you must not indulge doubtful and distrust- 
ful cares; bnt must trust God with these things also. 
For our Saviour prohibiteth his disciples all trou- 
ble, that might arise through fear of ill success in 
their Christian course. And St. Paul easeth him- 
self of this trouble and fear, committing his soul, and 
the issue of all his trials unto God,' saying, ^^ I know 
whom I have believed, and am persuaded that he is 
Me to keep that which I have committed imto him 
against that day." He is conikient in -Qod for good 
success in his whole Christian warfare; so should you. 

IV. Reasons against anxious Care^ and for quiet 
Ttmt in God. 

. Now to dissuade yau from all carefulness, and to 
persuade you to rest secure in God, concerning the 
particular events of all actions, and touching the 
final event and good success of your Christian pro- 
fession; consider :tlvese reasons: (1.) Showing why 
you should not care eagerly and inordinately for 
earthly things? ; (2.) Why you should not take 
doubtful or distrustful thought about any thing, 
whether earthly or heavenly. 

3. Seriously consider, that all earthly things are 
of little, worth, very fading, and transitory, likened, 
when they are at best, to the flower of grass; 
Wherefore they cannot be worthy of your anxious 
thought, or careful perplexity about them. It is ex- 
treme folly for man, being endued with reason, to set 
his mind upon that, which is little or nothing worth, 
jiiay, which (as Solomon calleth richesf:) " is not;'* 

Digitized by VJ.OOQ IC 


which IS but of short continuance, and only for bodily 
use, while he hath it: which also is given, by God, 
unto the wicked, even to his enemies, rather than 
unto the godly. . 

2. Inordinate care of earthly things is exceeding 
hurtful : For besides that it breedeth " many foolish 
and hurtful lusts, which drown men in perdition," it 
doth hinder the care of things spiritual and heavenly. 
It causeth persons either not to come at all to the 
means of salvation, or if they come to the .word, 
prayer, sacraments, good company, and good confer- 
ence, to depart without spiritual profit. It will 
cause a man to err from the faith, and to be alto- 
gether unfit for death, and unprepared for his latter 
end. . For. when any one part draweth more nourish- 
ment to itsel/ than it ought, some other parts must 
needs be hindered in their growth; and when the 
strengtl] of the ground is spent in nourishing weeds^ 
tares, or corn of little worth, the good wheat is ob- 
structed in its growth, choked, or starved. " He 
whose cares are too much about the earth, his care 
will be too little about the things of heaven." 

Why a man should not be careful about success io 
any thing. 

Next, consider the reasons, why you must not 
indulge any anxious care about success in your law- 
ful endeavours, any more than by prayer to commend 
them to God. 

1. Because it is to usurp God's peculiar right, 
God's divine prerogative, taking his sole and pro- 
per work out of his hands; for care of success, and 
of what shall be hereafter, is proper to God. 

2* It is a vain and fruitless thing (when you hax^ 

Digitized byVjOOQlC 


diligentlj used lawful means for atijr thing) to taktf 
thought for success* For ** who can by taking thought 
add any thing to his stature?* or << make one hair white 
or black?" Understand the same of lA other things^ 

S. Every day bringeth its full empli^ment with it^ 
together with its crosses and griefs; so that you wiB 
have full work enough for your eare, to endeavour to 
do the present day's work holily; and to bear each 
present day^s fiction fruitfully and patiently; you 
have little reason therefore to perplex your heart 
with taking thought of future events, or of what 
shall be to<«>morrow« 

4. It is altogether needless to take thought about 
the success of your actions, for success is cared for 
already by God. One whose care is of more use 
and consequence than yours can be. You are eared 
for by one, who loveth you better than you can love 
yourself, who is wise, and knoweth what is best for 
you, and what you most need, better than yourself; 
who is always present with you, and is both able and 
ready ^^ to do exceeding abundanriy for you, above all 
that you can ask or think ;" even God, who careth for 
meaner creatures than you are, who also is your 
God, your heavei^ Father, of whose care you 
have had happy experience, who in times past cared 
for you, when you could not care for yourself, who 
hath kept you in, and from your mother's belly; 
who, (if you are believers indeed) ordained you to 
salvation before you had a being ; who in due time 
gave his only begotten Son for you, and to you*, as 
appeareth in that now he hath given you faith and 
hope in him, and love to him. It is your Grod and 
Father who bath commanded, that for the present, 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


ttaA (ot the fiiture) jou should eUst your care and 
burden on him; having made many gracious pro- 
mises, that he will care for you, that he will sustain 
you, and that he will bring your desire to pass. 
What wise man then will encumber himself with 
needless cares? 

5* Carefulness or anxious thoughts about success, 
prooeedeth from base and cursed causes, namely, 
ignorance of God, and unbelief and distrust of Ood, 
in whomsoever this sin reigneth ; hence it was that 
the heathen abounded in this sin. And by how 
much this carefulness is indulged by any (though it 
reign not) by so much he may be said to be of little 
sound knowledge, and of little faith. 

6, Carefulness, and doubtful suspense about suc- 
cess in your lawful endeavours, be it whether you or 
yours shall prosper, or whether you shall profit by 
the means of grace, or whether you shall be saved in 
the end| doth produce many dangerous and mis- 
chievous eflfects:— — 

1. It will cause you to neglect the proper use of 
the means of this life, or of that which is to come; 
according as you doubt of success in either, or if you 
neglect them not utterly, yet you will have no heart 
to go about them. For as those that needlessly in- 
termeddle with other person's business, usually neg- 
lect their own ; so you will be apt to leave your own 
work undoue, when you take God's work out of his 
bands; and who is he that will take pains about that 
which he feareth will be to uo purpose, or labour 

2» Yon wUl be ready to use unlawful means for 
any thing, when you doubt of success from lawful. 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 



3. Taking thought doth divide, distract, over- 
load, and consume the heart and spirits.: nothing 

4. You can never be thankful to God for any 
thing whereof you fear that you shall have no good 

5. This anxious thought and distressing fear 
about success, will deprive you of the comfort of ail 
those good things you have had, and which now you 
do enjoy. 

6. Nothing lyiil bring ill success upon you sooner 
than unbelieving and distrustful fears about futuri- 
ty. For when any person shall, notwithstanding 
the experience he hath had, or might have had, of 
God's power, love, care, and truth of his promises, 
yet distrustfully care so far, as not to content him- 
self with his own work, so far as prudent care lead- 
eth him ; but also will take God's work, and the 
burden of his work upon himself, caring about suc- 
cess, which only belongeth to God, and which God 
only can do, and bear; this folly and presumption 
doth so much provoke God, that it caiiseth him, out 
of his wise justice, to cease caring for such a one, 
leaving him to his own care, and to his wit, friends, 
or any other earthly help, to make him, by woful ex- 
perience, see and feel, how little any, or all these, 
without God, can avail him. Nay, it causeth God 
not only to withdraw his own help, but the help of 
all things whereon such a man doth rely; and which 
is more, causeth them, instead of being for him, to 
be utterly against him. Is it not just with God, 
that whosoever will not be beholden to God to bear 
their burden, but will take it >up and bear it them- 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


selves, shauld be made to bear it alone, and to the 
distress and disquietment of their own hearts. 

Wherefore, all these things considered, I return 
to the exhortation^ or conclusion before proposed, 
namely. Commit thy ways unto th« Lord, and trust 
ill him. Cast all your care on God; be careful 
in nothing. 

Oh ! How happy are we Christians, if we did but 
know, or knowing would enjoy our happiness. We 
are^ cared for in every thing that we need, and that 
can be good for us; we may live without taking 
thought or care in any thing. Our work is only 
to study and endeavour to please God, walking be- 
fore him in sincerity, and with a perfect heart ; then 
we may cleave to him, and r«st on him both for our 
bodies and souls, without fear or distraction. God 
is all-sufficient, and all in all to such; he is known 
by his name Jehovah to such; even to the being, 
and the accomplisher of his promises to them. If 
we shall wisely and diligently care to do our work, 
we, serving so good and so able a master, need not 
take thought about our wages. If we would make 
it our care to obey and please so good, and so rich, 
and bountiful a Father, we need not be careful for 
our maintenance here, in our minority and non-age; 
nor yet fo* our eterhal inheritance, when we shall 
come to fuU age. We, in this holy security and 
freedom from earefulnessj if we are not wanting to 
ourselves, might live in a heaven upon earth ; and 
that not only when we have means, (for even then 
our «ecurity is in God, not in the means) but when 
to the eye of flesh we have no means: for God is 
above, and .more than all means. 

• Digitized by C:iOOQ IC 


V. Means to attain quieting Confidence in Godt 
and freedom fivm perplexing Cares. 

lliat you may leave anzioot caring^ and bi 
brought to cast all your care on Ood, 

1. Deny yourself, and your own wisdom; be not 
wise in your own conceiti nor presanptuoua of your 
wit, skill, or meant. 

2. Get sound knowledge, faith, hope, and confi- 
dence in God; live by faith, for the preservation 
both of body and soul. Get not only iaith in his 
promise, but in his providence also. When you 
shall see no way or means of gaining the good you 
desire, or of keeping you from the evil which you 
fear, or of delivering you from the evil you feel^ then 
call to mind, not only the promises of Gody via. <^ I 
am with you-— I will not leave nor forsake you— -All 
things work together for good;" and many such 
like; but believe also that God will provide means 
to bring to pass what he hath promised, though yet 
you see not how. When you can say, with faithful 
Abraham, '' God will provide," it will cast out fear and 
doubt. But if, with Abraham, you believe God's 

' promises in the main, but not God's providence in 
the means ; you will then be tempted to seek out, 
and use unlawful means to obtain the thing pro- 
mised, as he did ; or faint in waiting, as many others 
have done. For we see the like in David, when he 
had faith in God's providence, he could say of Saul, 
^^ The Lord shall smite him ; or his day shall come 
to die; or he shall descend into the battle^ and perish. 
The Lord forbid that I should stretch forth my hand 

d by Google 


against the Lord's anointed/' Bui when be doubted 
of God's providencei then he aaith» *< I ahaU now 
pen^ one day by the hand of SauK" 

3* ^^ Give all diligence to make your calling ai^I 
election sure ;" for when you know assuredly that 
God is your heavenly Father, and Christ Jesus your 
Redeem^} and th^t you are of }m family, having 
yoiw name written in heaven, you then will easily 
free your heart from being troubled with fear and 
restless care; being sure that your heavenly Father 
and Saviour doth and will provide for you. 

4. Lastly, you must often renew your acts of 
faith on God, his promises and providence^ casting 
all youif care on him. Making your requests known 
to God by prayer and supplication, for what you 
would have ; being heartily thankful for what you 
have had, now have^ and hope to have hereafter* 
Then ^* the peace of God, whic^ passeth all under* 
standing," shall keep your heart and mind from vex- 
ing thou^ts, and heart-distressing fears, and that, 
in and through Christ Jesus : of which peace I in- 
tend next to speak* 

Of Peace with God, 

I. The Nature and exeelten<y of Peace with God. 

That you may be persuaded to walk before God 
in uprightness, in all well^pleasing, and to Hve with- 

Digitized byCjOOQlC 



out taking anxious thought about any thing, cast- 
ing your care on God according to the former direc- 
tionsj-^God hath assured you that peace shall be 
upon you, even that ^* peace of God which passeth 
all understanding, which shall keep your heart and 
muid through Christ Jesus," if you thus do. 

Peace and quiet is most desirable. All things 
that have motion <ie6ire it as their perfection: bodily 
things enjoy it by their rest in their places ; reason- 
able things enjoy this peace in the quiet of their 
mind and heart, when they have their desires satis- 
fied, being freed from such opposition as might dis- 
quiet them. * , . 
I Peace is a true agreement and concord between 
persons or things, whereby not only all enmity is 
laid aside, and all injuries are forborne; but all amity 
is entered into, and ^U readiness of commuracating 
and doing good to each other is shown. 

Natural peace is of great price, and very much to 
be desired for the exceeding great benefit which it 
bringeth to the body, family, and state. But the 
peace of which I am to speak, which is promised to 
all who walk with God according to the rule of 
faith, and of the new creature, casting their care on 
God, exceedeth all other peace, as far as the soul, 
heaven, and etetrnity, exceedeth the body, the earth, 
and a moment of time. Which will easily appear, 
if you shall observe by what motives and arguments 
the H4>ly Ghost doth commend, and set this forth 
unto you« It hath its commendation above all other 
peace, in three respects: 

1. In respect of the excellency of the person, with 
whom and from whom it is, namely, God; therefore 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


it is called ^^ peace of God." It is so called, (1.) Be- 
cause it hath God for its <A)«^: it is a peace with 
God* (2.) Because God by his ^{^irit is the author 
of it: it is peace from (rod, a^peace which^God giv- 
eth; such a peace which the world neither can, nor 
will give. ' 

2. This peace is commended in respect of the un- 
speakable and inconceivable goodness and worth that 
is in it: it ^^ passeth aH understanding." And this it 
doth, not only because unsanctified men are mere 
strangers to it, and understand it naC^ but because 
regenerate men, to whom it belongeth, and in whom 
it is, even they, when God giveth them any lively 
feeling of it, find it to be such a peace as they could 
not imagine it to be before they felt it. For they 
cannot so distinctly and fully conceive the transcen- 
dent excellency of it, as by any means fitly to de- 
scribe it. It rather taketh up the tnind into a holy 
rapture, unto admiration of what it seeth, and of 
what it perceiveth is yet to be known, than possibly 
can be distinctly and fuliy comprehended or ex- 
pressed by mind or tongue. It is with them that 
feel it in any special degree, as it was with the queen 
of the South, when she Saw Solomon's wisdom. She 
had a great opinion of Solomon's wisdom by what 
she had heard, but when she saw it, she was struck 
with such admiration, that, it is said, she had *^ no 
more spirit in her;" his wisdom was so much beyond 
her expectation, that she breaketh out into words of 
admiration, saying. That the half was not told her of 
Solomon's wisdom, it exceeded the fame thereof :-— so 
doth the peace of God. It being, like the dimen- 
sions of the love of Christ, the root thereof, and like 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 



the ravishing joy of Chri«tian9f tke fruit thereof 
surpassing all fuU and ^istiojC^ knowleclge^ and all 
nutans of fuH and d^ar expression; heing^ aa the 
Holy Qhost aI$o saith, ^^ unspeakabW This peace 
Uieluded amongst those other gracea and gifts ae^ 
companying the gospel, which are such as ^^ eye hath 
not seen^ nor ear beard^ neither have entered into 
the heairt of man," ^ as dearly to peroeiye them, or 
foUy to express ibemt 

3« This peace U eommended in respect of the ex«« 
eeUent effect thereof^ which is a proof that it paaaeth 
understimding, namely, it ke^eth the heart and 
mind, in and through Christ Jeans. 

This is an excellent and lAOSt iMeful effect on 
man's behalf; for it supplieth the place and office of 
a castle or strong garrison, 2 Cor* xi. 32. as the 
original siguifieth, to keep the prbctpal forts of the 
soul from being surprised or annoyed, either by in« 
vasion from without, or by insurrection from within* 

The parts of man, which are kept hy this peace 
of God, are the heart and rnind^ By heart, is 
meant the will and affections; by mind, the power of 
thinking ^nd understanding. For true peace of 
God doth fill the heart with such joy, patience, 
hope, and comfort in believing, that it keepeth it 
from heart-vexing grief, fear, distrust^ and despair. 
It likewise fiUeth the mind so full of apprehensbn 
of God's favour, fidelity, and love> that it maketh 
it rest secure in God, and delivereth it from distress 
of mind, or anxious carea about any thing; keeping 
out the dominion of all perplexing and distrustful 

The strength which this peaoe hath, whereby it 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


keepeth the heart and mind as with a garrison, is 
impregnable. It is derived from Christ, it hath it 
in and from Christ: the text saith, ** through Christ," 
that is, through the power of Christ's Spirit. For 
as we are kept by faith, from which this peace spring- 
eth, as with a strong garrison, by the power of God 
to salvation, so, by the same power of Christ, our 
hearts and mrnds are kept by the peace of God,, as 
with a garrison, from discouraging, distracting, and 
uncomfortable thoughts. For what is this peace 
else but a beam from the object of our faith, pro- 
ceeding from the love of God to us-ward, and the 
fruit of faith, as we feel it wrought in us by God? 

This peace of God is two-fold, or one and the 
same in diflerent degrees. 

The first is an actual entering into, and mutual 
embracing of, peace between God and man. 

The second is the manifestation and expression 
of this peace. 

The first is when God and man are made friends; 
which is, when God is pacified towards man, and 
when man is reconciled unto God, so that now God 
standetfa well affected towards men, and man hath 
put off enmities against God; which mutual atone- 
ment and friendship, Christ Jesus, the only media- 
tor between God and man, hath by his satisfaction 
and intercession wrought for man, and by his Spirit 
applieth unto, and worketh in man. For until this 
atonement be applied, God, in his just judgment and 
holy displeasure, is an enemy unto man for sin, and 
man, in his evil mind and unjust hatred, is an enemy 
unto God, and unto all goodness, through sin. 

This first peace, is peace of God with man, in- 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


hcrcnt tn God, working the like disposition of peace 
in man towards God; and is the fountain- froni which 
the second floweth. 

The second kind, or rather farther degree, of 
peace of God, is the operation and manifestation of 
the former peace, which i& a peaee of God in man 
wrought by the Spirit of God, through the appre- 
hension that God is at peace with him. 

This peace is partly and most sensibly in the con- 
science, which is called " peace of conscience," and 
may also be called " peace of justification," ac- 
cording to that, " being justified by faith, we have 
pSace with God." And it is partly in the whole 
reasonable man, whereby the will and affections of 
the soul agree within themselves, and arc subject to 
the enlightened mind, conspiring all of them against 
the common adversaries of God and the soul, that 
is, the flesh and the devil: this may be called peace 
of sanctification, according to that of the apostle, 
" Being made free from sin, and become servants of 
God, you have your fruit unto holiness^" This is 
the agreement of all the members to become " ser- 
vants to righteousness unto holiness." Not but there 
will be warring always in our members, but it is not 
the warring so much of one nvember against another, 
as the warring of the flesh in every member against 
the Spirit ; which Spirit also warreth against the flesh. 
This conflict between the flesh and the Spirit, begin- 
ning in man as soon as the Spirit hath wrought the 
peace of holiness, in setting the soul in order* 

Moreover, this peace of sanctification consisteth 
in this, that although a Christian must never be, nor 
ever is, at peace with sin, so that it doth not assault 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 

and molest him, or that be should subjeet himself to 
it, or have it absolutely subject to him in this life, 
yet he hath a peace and quiet, in comparison, from 
sin, inasmuch as he is freed from the dominion and 
power of sin, to condemn him, or to reduce him to 
his former bondage unto siu. Now, so far as a man 
getteth a conquest over his lusts, that they are kept 
under, and forbear to assault and molest him, so far 
he may be said to have this peace of sanctification. ■■ 
The conscience, when it is awakened in the act of 
accusing and condemning man for sin, doth withal 
prick, sting, and wound the heart with unutterable 
and inconceivable griefs, fears, and terrors, through 
the apprehension of God*s infinite, eternal, and just 
wrath for sin. 

. Now, wheii God, by his Spirit, giveth any true 
hope and assurance unto a man, that his justice is 
satisfied concerning him, through Christ, ami ihat 
now all enmity and wrath is done away on God's 
part, and that he loveth him in Christ, with a free, 
full, and everlasting love, hereby he speaketh peace 
to the conscience, having done away all the guilt of 
sin, which before molested it through sense of God's 
anger, and fear, of punishment. Hence ariseth 
peace and comfort in the conscience, which, there- 
fore, is called " peace of conscience," Thus the 
mind ceaseth to be perplexed, and, by faith in Christ's 
death, through the Spirit, becometh quiet with a 
heavenly tranquillity, resting on the word of pro* 
mise; and according to the measure of clear appre« 
hension of God's love in Christ, in the same mea- 
sure is at sweet agreement within itself, without fear 
ar trouble; and in the same measure he hath peace 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


of conscience, flowing from the assurance of justifi- 

As soon also as a man beginneth actually to be at 
peace with God^ his lusts do begin to he at war with 
him, rebelling against the ^* law of his mind," wJiich 
yet by little and little shall be subdued and con«- 
quered; which conquest, though it be impeifect in 
this life, yet, by virtue of the peace now made with 
God, if he will improve it by seeking help of Ood, 
and taking to him the complete armour, fighting 
manfully under Christ's banner, he may so prevail 
against them, that they do not so often nor so strongly 
assault him as in former times. Now, so far as 
tbe powers and faculties of man agree in their fight 
against siu, and subdue it that it doth not assault 
and molest him, he may be said to have the peace 
of sanctification. 

The first peace, whereby God is pacified and is 
become propitious and gracious to man, is absolutely 
necessary to the being of a Christian. 

The second, which riseth from the manifestation 
of this peace unto a man, and the sensible feeling 
of the operation of this peace in man, is not neces- 
sary to the being of a Christian, at least in a aensi- 
ble degree of it, but to the well-being of a Christian 
it is necessary. For a man may be in the favour 
of<7od, and yet be without the sense of this peace 
in himself, because this peace of conscience doth not 
flow necessarily from the being in God's favour, but 
from knowledge and assurance of being in his favour. 

Now, a man, in many cases, may lose for a time 
hisBcnse of God's favour, his faith being over-douded 
with fears and unbelief, as it was with David, after 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


his adultery, who yet was upheld secretly by his 
right hand, (as the Psalmist was in another case, 
Psalm Ixxiii. 23.) by virtue of that first peace of 
God, yet, until God gave him the sense and feeling 
of his ^^ loving countenance," he could not enjoy the 
comfort of it; yea, though God, by Nathan, in the 
outward ministry of his woi^d, had given him assur« 
ance of God's loving-kindness, saying, " The Lord 
hath put away thy sin, thou shalt not die." 

That first peace is absolute, and admitteth t)f no 

. The second, which flowoth thence, both in re- 
spect of peace of conscience, and in respect of good 
agreement of the powers and faculties of man within 
themselves, and of freedom from assaults and moles- 
tations either of Satan from without, or from lusts • 
within, is not absolute, but admitteth of several de- 
grees. In the life to come this latter peace shall be 
perfect, for then all believers shall be perfectly freed 
from all trouble of conscience, and from all molesta^ 
tion by temptations; their victory shall be complete* 
But in this life their peace is but imperfect; it is true 
for substance, but is more or less, as the light they 
have received is more dear or dim, and as grace in 
them is more strong or more weak. 

For although man's justification is absolute, and 
admitteth not of degrees, yet the assurance of it, 
whereby a man hath peace of conscience, is more or 
less, according to the measure of his clear sight of 
Christ's love, and evidence of his faith. Hence it 
is, that the dear children of God have interruptions 
and intermissions in their peace; have sometimes 
much peace} sometimes little or no peace, according 
M 31 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


as they have intermissions in their assurance of God'j 

Thus it was with David and Asaph, sometimei 
his heart was quiet, and his spirit wim glad, in as- 
surance that his soul should rest in hope; at othei 
times, his soul was cast down and disquieted in him. 
thinking that he was cast out of God's sight, fear 
ing that God would show no more favour. Yea 
he was so perplexed, that he did almost f^nt, am 
his eyes failed with waiting for God, For, since 
the best assurance of believers is exercised witi 
combating against doubting, their truest atul best 
peace must needs be assaulted with disquiet. Anc 
as it is with a ship, at anchor, so is the most stabli 
peace of a Christian in this life, who hath his hop 
^' as an anchor of his soul, sure and steadfast;" who 
though he cannot make utter shipwreck, yet he mai 
be grievously tossed and affrighted with the ware 
and billows of manifold temptations and fears. Like 
wise, though peace of sanctification be true, yet i 
must needs be more or less, according as any mai 
groweth or decreaseth in holiness, and as God shal 
please to restrain his spiritu^ enemies, or give powe 
to subdue them, more or less. 

Now, the peace of God, both in him to man, an 
from him manifested and wrought in man, doth pas 
all understanding, and servcth to keep the heart an 
mind of him tliat walketh with God, and resteth o 
him through' Christ. 

This peace it is which you must seek for an 
embrace in believing, and if you would have tri 
comfort and tranquillity in your mind, labour esp 
•dally to get and keep the peace of a goodi 




\ which seemeth to be the peace that is chiefly, though 
not only, intended in this text. 

II. Farther Excellencies of the Peace of God, 

That you may be induced, with all diligence and 
earnestness, to seek after this blessed peace, and 
Qiay better perceive that this peace of God, for 
worth and use, passeth all understandings take these 
reasons in particular: 

1. That must needs be an excellent peace, which 
God will please to take into his holy title, calling 
himself " The God of peace," calling Christ « The 
Prince of peace." 

2. That peace must needs be of infinite value, 
passing all understanding, for which Christ gave 
bimself; paying the price of hu own most precious 
blood for it. 

8. This peace cannot but pass all understanding, 
because the cause from whence it cometfa, namely^ 
Christ's love, and the effect which it worketh, namely^ 
\^ joy in the Holy Ghost," do, as the apostles affirm, 
pass knowledge, and are unspeakable 

4. This peace was that first congratulation, where* 
with the holy angels saluted the church at Christ's 
birth, giving her joy in her new*born Husband and 
Saviour. And it was that special legacy which 
Christ Jesus did bequeath to his churchy . leaving 
that as the best token of his love to it, a little 

*^ before his death: saying, " My peace I leave with 
^ you." 

5. This peace is one of the pcineipal parts of the 
kingdom of God^ which consistetH, aa the.apostle 


Digitized by VjOOQIC 


saith, of ** rigliteousness, and peace, and joy in tlie 
Holy Ghost," 

6, By as much as the evils and mischiefs that 
come to a man by having God to be his enemy, 
which draweth upon him God's wrath, justice, power, 
and all God's creatures to be against him; and by as 
much, as the grievous and intolerable anguish of the 
wounded spirit passeth understanding; by so much 
the pe^ce of God, which freeth him from all these, 
must of necessity pass all understanding. 

Now, that it is a fearful thing to have God to be 
an enemy, it is said. He is *^ a consuming fire,'' and, 
** it is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the 
living God." It appears, likewise, by Christ's coro-> 
passion and grief for Jerusalem, who neglected the 
time of making and accepting of peace with God: 
for he wept over it, and said, <* If thou hadst known, 
even thou, at least in this thy day, the things which 
belong unto thy peace ! but now they are hid from 
thine eyes.^' But what it is to have God to be an 
enemy, is seen most* fully by Christ's trouble and 
grief in his passion and agony in the garden, and in 
the extremity of his conflict with God's wrath on 
the cross, when God showed himself to be an enemy, 
and did, for man's sin, pour on him the fierceness 
of his wrath. It made him, though he was God, 
being man, to sweat, for very anguish, as it were 
drops of. blood, and to cry, ^^ If it be possible, let 
this cup pass from me," and, " My God, my God, 
why hast thou forsaken me?" 

Moreover, if you do observe the complaints of 
such distressed souls' that have had terror of con- 
science, (if you have not had experience thereof in 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


yourseli^) how that they were at their %its' end, 
pricked at hearty as it were with the point of a spear, 
or sting of a serpent) pained like men whose bones 
are. broken and out of joint, making them to roar, 
and to consume their spirits for very heaviness, then 
you will say that peace of conscience doth pass all 

. 7« When God and a man's own' conscience are 
for him, and Ood's grace in some good measure hath 
subdued sin and Satan in him, this bringeth with it 
assurance that all other things, whose peace are 
worth having, are also at peace with him. For, 
f^ if God be for us, who can be against us." This 
peace must of necessity bring with it all things which 
will make us happy, even all things which pertain to 
life, godliness, and glory. 

Lastly, Consider this, that as the worth and sense 
of peace with God is unutterable and inconceivable, 
so the time of it is indeterminable, it is everlasting, 
and hath no end. Compare this with the former, 
and it cannot be denied, but that the peace of God 
^oth every way pass understanding. 


Concerning the Impediments to Peace — 
false Hopes y and false Fears'. 

I. The Kinds of Impediments that hindet* Peace. 

First, If you would enjoy this happy peace, you 
jBUSt remove and avoid the impediments; Secondly, 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


You musi ude all helps and furtherances wkieh serve 
to procure and keep it. 

I reduce the impediments to two heads. 

1. A false opinion and hope that all is well with 
a man, and that all shall be well with him in respect 
of his salvation, when, yet indeed God is not recontt 
cilcd to him. Hence will follow a quietness of 
heart, somewhat like to peace of cousctence; which 
yet is but a false peace. 

2. Causeless doubting, and false fear, that a roan's 
estate, with respect to his salvation, is not good, al- 
though God beat peace with him; hence followeth 
trouble and anguish of heart, somewhat like unto 
that of hellbh despair, disturbing his true peace. 

Either of these do hinder peace. 

The first hindereth the having, the second hin« 
dereth the feeling and comfortable enjoying of peace. 

It hath been an old device of Satan, when be would 
keep any man from that which is true, to obtrude 
upon him that which shall seem to be true, but is 
false. Thus he did in the first calling of the Jews. 
When he saw they had an expectation of the true 
Christ, he, to divert and seduce them from the true 
Christ, setteth up false Christs. Even so in the 
matter of peace: if he can so delude men that they 
shall content themselves with a false peace, he know- 
eth that they will never seek for that which is true. 
It is a common practice with the devil to endeavour 
to make all who are not in a state of grace, to pre- 
sume that they are. 

Also, such is his cunning and malice, that when 
any man is in the state of grace, he will labour by 
all means to distress and perplex the soul with un- 
reasonable fears' and suspicions, to make that estate 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


doufatfal and uncom&rtable, to vex and to weary 
him, if he cannot drive him to despair. Now the 
heart of man, so far as it is unsanctified, being ^<^ de^ 
ceitful above all things," is most apt to yield to Sa- 
tan in both these cases. Whence it is, that there 
are very many who boast of much peace, and yet 
have none of it. And many fear they have no 
peace, who yet ha^e much of it. 

Wherefore, the rule is. Believe not either your 
deceitful heart, nor the devil, when they tell you, 
either that you are in a state of salvation, or in a 
state of damnation: but believe the scripture, what 
it saith in either. 

You may know when these persuasions come from 
your deceitful heart or from the devil, thus:— 

1. if the means to persuade you to cither, be from 
false grounds, or from misapplication of true grounds. 

2. If the conclusions inferred from either persua^ 
sion, be to keep you in a sinful course, and to keep 
you, or to drive you from God, as if you need not 
be BO strict in godliness, or that now it is in vain, 
or too late, to tuni and seek unto God, then it is 
from Satan and from a deceitful heart, and you must 
not believe them. But if thes^ persuasions be from 
a right application of true grounds, and do produce 
these good effects, to drive you to God, in praise or 
prayer, and unto a care to please God, they are from 
his gracious Spirits 

II. The Causes of Presumption^ or, false Peace. 

The false peace and evil quiet of conscience, doth 
arise from th^se three causes: 

Digitized by V:iOOQlC 


1. From gross ignorance of the dagger 'wherein 
a man liveth because of sin: whence folio weth a 
blind conscience. 

2. From groundless security and presumption that 
all shall be well with him, notwithstanding that he 
knoweth he hath sinned,, and knoweth that sin is. 
damnable: whence he hath a deluded conscience. . 

3. From obstinacy, through delight and custom 
in sin : whence cometh hardness and insensibility of 
heart, which is a seared conscience. 

Wheresoever any of these evils reign, although 
God hath said, " There is no peace to the wicked," 
that is, no true peace; yet such fear.no evil, but pro- 
mise to themselves peace and safety, like those, of 
whom the prophet spake, who had ^* made a covenant 
with death, and with hell were at an agreei^ietit." 
Yea, though they bear all the curses against sinner^^i 
which are in God'« book denounced against them, 
yet will they '^ bless themselves in their heart, and 
say, they shall have peace, though they walk in the 
stubbornness of their hearts." But whosoever 13 
thus quiet in himself through a false peace, it is a 
sign that the^* strong man keepeth the house," and 
that he, continuing in this fool's paradise, is not fai 
from sudden and fearful destruction from the AU 

Whosoever, therefore, would have true peace of 
God, must know and be thoroughly convinced, that 
by nature, by reason of Adam's first transgression, 
which is justly imputed to him, and because of his 
own inherent wickedness of heart and life, of omis- 
sion and commission in thought, word, and deed, he 
is in a state of sin and condemnation, having God 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 

for.hia enemy, yea, is an heir of wrath, and of eter- 
nal vengeance, of hell fire: according to that of the 
apostle, ^' All have sinned, and are become guilty 
before God, and have come short of the glpry of 
God." Ignorance of danger may give quiet to the 
mind for a time, but it can give no safety. Is not 
he foolishly secure that resteth quietly in a ruinous 
house, not knowing his danger, until it fall upon 
him? Whereas, if he had known it, he would have 
had more fear and disquiet, but less danger. 

III. Grounds of False Hope Discovered and 

Let no man presume upon weak and false grounds, 
that he shall escape the veiigeance of hell, or attain to 
the happiness of heaven. How weak and vain are 
^he foundations on which many build their hopes of 
salvation! and from thence their peace will appear by 
that which followeth. 

1. Some think that because God made them, 
surely he will not damn them. True, if they should 
have continued good as he made them. God made 
the devil good, yea, an excellent creature, yet, who 
knoweth not, that he shall be damned? If God 
spared not his holy angels, after that they became 
sinful, shall man think that he will spare him? A 
sinful man shall be judged at the last day, not ac- 
cording to what he was by God's first making, but 
as he shall be found defiled and corrupted by the 
devil, and by his own lusts. When Judah became 
a people of no understanding, it is said, ^^ He that 
made them will not have mercy on them, and he that 

Digitized by CjOOQ IC 


formed them will show them no faToor." Huis it 
is spoken to every sinner remaining in bis sin, ^not- 
withstanding that God made him, 

2. Some say their sfBiciions have been so many^ 
80 great and so lasting, that they hope they have 
had their hell in this life: whence it is, that their 
hearts are quiet in respect of any fear of wrath and 
judgment at the last day. 

I would ask such, Whether they, being thus 
afflicted, have returned to God that smote tlvem, and 
whetlier their afflictions have made them better; or 
whether, like Solomon's fool ** brayed in a mortar," 
their sin and folly is not departed from them? If 
so, they must know, the more they have been, and 
now are afflicted, if they be not reformed by it, this 
doth presage that there is the more and worse be- 
hind: as it was in the case of Judah. Many have 
been often and extremely corrected by their parents 
and others, yet, remaining incorrigible, Irave at last 
suffered public execution. 

3. Some, though their ways be never so evil, yet 
because to them God's judgments are far above, out 
of their sight, and because they have no changes, 
God forbearing to execute his judgments upon them 
speedily, they persuade themselves that God seeth 
not, or that he is not angry with them, or that he 
regc.rdeth not, and that he will neither do good nor 
bad, thinking that God hath forgotten, or that he is 
like them, well enough pleased with them; hereby 
they lay their consciences asleep, promising unto 
themselves tmmunity from punishment, and that 
they shall ne\er be moved. 

Know ye, that God's forbearance of his wrath is 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


not because lie seeth not, or because he bath for- 
gotten, or regarded not your wickedness: but because 
he would give yod time and means of repentance; 
it is because he would not have yon perish, but come 
to repentance, that you may be saved : which if you 
do not, this his bounty and long-suffering maketh 
way for his justice, and serveth to leave you without 
excuse; and to heap up wrath for you against the 
day iof judgment, *' the day of the revelation of the 
just judgment of God, who shall render to every 
man according to his works." For God knoweth 
how *' to reserve the wicked to the day of judgment, 
to be punished." He will take his time to hear and 
afflict you, when he shall set all the sins, of you that 
forget him, in order before you; then, if your speedy 
repentance do not now prevent it, lie will tear you 
in pieces when there shall be none to deliver. The 
longer be was in fetching his blow, the more deadly 
wdll. his stroke be when it Qometh. Many male- 
factors are not so much as called at a petty sessions, 
when less offenders are both called and punished; 
yet they have no cause to promise safety to them-^ 
selves, for they are reserved for a more solemn trial, 
and.execntion, at the grand assizes. So wicked men, 
that are not afflicted here, are reserved for. the last 
judgment, at the great and terrible day of the Lord. 

4. There are some who hope that God doth love 
them, and that he doth intend to save them; for 
they prosper in every thing, and are not in trouble 
and distress as other men; hereupon their con- 
aciences are quiet, and without fear. 

Let me tell you who thus think, that this is a 
poor ftmndation to build your hope tipon. What 
are yott the- better for your, prosperity? Are you 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


more thankful and more obedient? I>o you the 
more good, by as much as you prosper more? If so, 
well; if not, know, as Solomon, by the Spirit of truth, 
telleth you, that no man can know God's love or 
hatred by all that is before him; be it prosperity or 
adversity. In these things there may be one and 
the same event to the righteous and to the wicked* 
Know, moreover, that the wicked, for the most part, 
thrive most in this world; God giving them their 
portion in this life, wherewith they nourish them* 
selves against the day of slaughter, making their 
own table their snare, and their prosperity their ruin. 

5. There are many, who compare themselves with 
themselves, passing by their own manifold sins, 
looking only upon their own hypocritical and civil 
good purposes and deeds; comparing also their sins 
with the notorious sins of God's people committed 
before their conversion, and with the gross sins of 
Noah, Abraham, Lot, Peter, and other godly men, 
after conversion, they hence conclude, that since 
such are saved, they must entertain a good opinion 
of themselves, and hope they shall be saved; they 
think that all is well with them, being such of whom 
our Saviour speaketh, that ^^ need no repentance." . 

I would have these to know, that they who thus 
cofupare themselves with themselves are not wise; 
and they that think well of themselves, and commend 
themselves, are not approved; but those only whom 
the Lord commendeth. Moreover, the slips and 
falls of the people of God, both before and after 
conversion, did serve for their own humbling^ and 
for a warning to all that should hear thereof. God 
knoweth how to reprove ^nd chasten his own that 
offend, giving them repentance to lifeaodsalvation; 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


and yet justly will condemn all those that shall pre^ 
sumptuously stumble at their falls, and wilfully lie 
in their sins, being fallen. It is not safe following' 
the best men in all their actions, for in many things 
they ^in all, not only before, but after conversion. 
And as the cloud that guided the Israelites, had 
two sides, the one bright and shining, the. other 
black and dark, such is the cloud of examples of 
godly men. Those who will be directed by the 
light side thereof, shall, with the children of Israel, 
pass safely towards the heavenly Canaan; but those 
that will follow the dark side shall all perish with 
the Egyptians in the red sea of destruction. What4 
soever any were before conversion, or whatsoever 
gross sin they fall into aftier conversion, if they were 
humble and truly penitent, none of them are laid to 
their charge, because they are done away by Christ 
Jesus. These are in better state than those who 
for matter never committed so great sins, if, pharisee- 
like, they repent not of their lesser sins^ as they 
esteem them, and are proud of their supposed good- 
ness and well doing. For God, in justifying the 
humble publican rather than the proud pharisee, 
sfaoweth that proud innocency is always worse than 
humble guiltiness. 

6. There are likewise sopie others, who are 
guilty to themselves of damnable. sins, yet hope to 
be saved by the goodness of other men, by pardons 
from the pope, by absolutions of priests, and by 
certain penitential external acts of their own,: and by 
good works, such as alms^ &c« These, if they 
might hope of *the pope's indulgences, aiid a priest's 
absolution, if th^ fulfil their penance enjoined, if 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


(hey are devout in certain superstitions, in their, 
will-worship and voluntary religion, their conscience 
is quiet for a time, notwithstanding their foul and 
black fiins, even their abominable idolatries. 

I make known to these, that all this is but a 
blindfolding, smothering, and sttipifying the con* 
science for a time, laying a double, and a £ar greater 
guilt upon it, and is far from being any means truly 
to pacify it. For how can a man have. true peace 
from any, or from all ^uch actions as are ui them- 
selves an actual denying of the true head of the 
church, Jesus Christ, and are a cleaving to a false 
head, which is antichrist? And how can any man 
merit for himself, when our Saviour saith, ^^ He 
who hath done all that is commanded, is an un- 
profitable servant, and hath done but his duty," 
which thing* he must say and acknowledge? All 
these before-mentioned build their hopes upon false 
grounds. Those that follow build their presump^ 
tuous and false hopes upon a misapplication of true 

7. Many acknowledge that they have sinned and 
do deserve eternal damnation ; but they say God is 
merciful, therefore their heart is quiet, without ail 
fear of condemnation^ 

It is true, that God is most merciful : but how ? 
Know, he is not necessarily merciful, as if be could 
not choose but show it to all men. He is volun- 
tarily merciful, showing mercy only to those unto 
whom he will show mercy. God could and did 
hate, and in his justice condemned Esau, notwith- 
standing his love and mercy to Jacob. God is all 
justice, as well as all mercy; but he hath his several 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


objects of justice and mercy, and hath his several 
vessels of wrath and mercy, into which respectively 
he doth pour his wrath or mercy. When God 
speaketh of obstinate sinners, he saith, that he will 
not be merciful to their iniquities; and again, *^ He 
that made them will not have mercy on them." 
And David prayeth with a prophetical spirit, saying 
to God, ^^ Be not merciful to wicked transgressors;" 
and who are these, but such as hate to be reformed, 
who are presumptuous, and tuni the grace of God 
into wantonness. Nay, concennng them that tflways 
err in their heart, he hath in effect swdrn that he 
will show them ho mercy; for he hath sworn that 
^* they shall not enter into his rest/' 

8. Some others go farther: they acknowledge 
that God's justice must be satisBed, and they think 
it is satisfied for them, dreaming of universal re- 
demption, by Christ, who indeed is said to die to 
'^ take away the sins of the world." This causeth 
their conscience to be quiet, notwithstanding that 
they live in sin. 

It must be granted, that Christ gave himself a 
ransom for alK This random may be called general, 
and for all, in some sense: but how? namely, in 
respect of the common nature of man, which he 
took, and of the common cause of mankind, which 
be undertook; and in itself it was of sufficient price 
to redeem all men; and because applicable to all, 
without exception, by the preaching and ministry of 
the gospel. And it was so intended by Christ, that 
the piaster should be as large as the sore, and that 
there should be no defect in the remedy, that is, in 
the price, or sacrifice of himself ofiered upon the 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


cross, by which man should be saved, but that all 
men, and each particular man, might iu that respect 
become salvable by Christ. 

Yet doth not the salvation of all men necessarily 
follow hereupon; nor must any part of the price 
which Christ paid, be held to be superfluous, though 
many be not saved by it. 

But know, that the application of the remedy, 
and the actual fruit of this all-sufficient ransom, 
redouudeth to those who are saved only by that way 
and means which God was pleased to appoint, which, 
in the case of adults, is faith, by which Christ is 
tictually applied. Which condition, many to whom 
the gospel doth, come, make impossible to them- 
selves, through a wilful refusal of the gospel, and 
Wvation itself by Christ, upon those terms which 
God doth offi;r it. 

Upon this sufficiency of Christ's ransom, and in- 
tention of God and Christ, that it should be suffi- 
cient to save all, is founded that general offer of 
Christ to all and to each particular person, to whom 
the Lord shall be pleased<to reveal the gospel: like- 
wise that universal precept of the gospel, command- 
ing every man to repent, and believe in Christ 
Jesus; as also, the universal promise of salvation, 
made to every one that shall believe in Christ Jesus* 

Although, in one sense, it is true, Christ may be 
said to have died for all, yet let no one think to 
enjoy the benefits of his precious death and sacrifice, 
without serious diligence to make their calling and 
election sune. For God did intend this all-sufficient 
price for all, otherwise to his elect in Christ, than 
to those whom he passed by and not elected; for be 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


intended this not only out of a general and eommon 
love to mankind, but out of a peculiar love to his 
elect. He gave not Christ equally and alike to 
save all; and Christ did not so lay down his life for 
the reprobate as for the elect. Christ so died for 
all, that his death might be applicable to all. He 
so died for the elect, that his death might be actually 
applied unto them- He so died for all, that they 
might have an object of faith, and that if they should 
believe in Christ, they might be saved. But he so 
died for the elect that they might actually believe, 
and be saved. Hence it is that Christ's death 
becometh efiectual to them, and not to the other, 
thoiigh sufScient for all. Now that many believe 
not, they Jiaving the means pf faith, the fault is in 
themselves, through their wilfulness or negligence; 
but that any believe to salvation, is of God's grace, 
attending his election, and Christ's dying out of his 
especial love for them; and not of the power of 
man's free* will: God sending his gospel, ^and giving 
the grace of faith and new obedience to those whom 
of his free grace he hath ordained to eternal life, 
both where .he pleaseth and when he pleasetb. 

Furthermore, it must be considered that iiotwith* 
standing the all-sufficiency of Christ's death, whereby 
the new covenant of grace is ratified and confirmed, 
the covenant is not absolute, but conditional. Now 
what God proposeth conditionally, no man must 
take absolutely. For God hath not said that all 
men without exception shall be saved by Christ's 
death: although he saitb, Christ died for all; but 
salvation is promised to those only who repent and 
Jbe]ieve«. . , : 

■ Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


' Wbef^foreinotwithaiandiug Christ's infinite xneiit, 
whereby he satisfied for mankind; and notwithstand- 
ing the universality of the offer of salvation to all to 
whom the gospel is preached; both scripture and 
experience show, that not all, nor yet the most, shall 
be saved, and that because the number of them who 
repent, and unfeignedly believe, whereby they make 
particular and actual applicalioa of Christ and his 
merits to themselves^ are fewest. For of those 
many that are called, few are chosen. Wherefore 
let none ignorantly dream of an absolute, universal 
redemption, as many siipple people do. For though 
Christ be said to suffer to take away the sins of the 
whole world, yet the scripture saitb, that the whole 
world of unbelievers and of ungodly men shall perish 

9. Many will yield that they must have faith and 
repentance, and that they must be ingrafted into 
Christ and become new creatures, else they cannot 
hope to be saved; but they think they are all this 
already; whence followeth quiet of conscience* 
Whereas, when it cometh to the trial, their fiiith and 
repentance are found not to be sound. As will thus 

They think they have faith, ( 1.) Because they 
believe the whole scripture to be the good word of 
God. (2.) They believe not only that there is a 
God, but- that Jesus Christ is the Son of God, and 
Saviour of the world, yea, according to the letter, 
they believe all the articles of the Christian faith. 
(SJ) They think they are believers, because they 
liave been baptized, and have given their names 
unto Christ; they profess the only true sdigion, 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


tii^y have ibe very true form of godliness in all th^ 
external exercises of religion. Whereas, if they 
believe no more, nor better, they may know that 
their faith is only a historical and general faith, or 
only a temporary faith at the best, necessary indeed 
to ^Ivation, but not sufficient to save. The devils 
believe as much as the first, and very hypocrites 
may, and do profess, and do as much as the second 
and third. The apostle Paul having to do with 
hypocritical Jews, who because of their form of 
iinowledge, and profession, though without practice, 
did nourish in themselves a vain persuasion that they 
should be saved, removed this false ground of their 
hope thus, saying, ^* He is not a Jew who is one 
outwardly, but he is a Jew who is one inwardly; 
neither is that circumcision which is outward in the 
fiesh, but that which is of the heart, in the spirit 
and not in the letter, whose praise is not of men 
but of God." In like manner, St. Peter assured 
all Christians, that the baptism, which is only a 
putting away of the filth of the flesh, doth not save; 
but that baptism which giveth proof that the heart 
is sprinkled from an evil conscience, as well as the 
body washed with pure water, showing itself by the 
answer which a good conscience maketh in believing 
the truth, consenting unto, and embracing the new 
covenant, whereof baptism is a seal, of which an- 
ciently men of years made profession when they 
were baptized. Neither is it any thing worth, to 
have the form of godliness in profession, when the 
power thereof is denied by an evil conversation. 
For however such as these are most apt to claim an 
interest in Christ, yet so long as their faith is not a 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


particular faithi drawipg with it aflSapee, and sole 
reliance on Christ for salvation, declaring its truth 
and life by endeavouring to perform the new cove- 
nant on their part, by new obedience, in all manner 
of good works; our Saviour professeth that he 
knoweth them not, but biddeth them depart from 
him, because they were workers of iniquity. 

But many of these presume farther, that their 
faith is a lively and saving faith, because, as they 
think, they have repented, and are become new 
creatures. And all because they had such enlight- 
ening as by nature man cannot attain unto; nay^ 
^he word hath affected them much, and somewhat 
altered them from what they were, namely, (1.) 
When they were hearing a sermon, or when God's 
rod was over them, they have mourned, wept, and 
^hown some kind of humiliation. (2.) At the hear* 
^ug of God's precious promises in the gospel, in the 
glad tidings of salvation, they have felt a taste of the 
heavenly gift, and of the good word of God, and of 
the powers of the world to come. And (3.) They 
find that they do not commit many of those sins 
which they were used to commit; and that they do 
many good duties toward God and man, which they 
were used not to do. 

But what of all this? These men, as near as 
.they come, yet going no farther, are far from salva- 
tion. For the common gifts of God's Spirit, given 
unto men in the ministry of the gospel, may elevate 
a man higher, and carry him farther towards heaven, 
than nature, arc, or mere human industry can do; 
and yet, if the saving graces of the same Spirit be 
pot added, he will be left far short of heaven, 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


Mere oratory in some pathetical preachers, when 
they speak of matters doleful and terrible, will move 
the affections, and draw tears from some hearers. 
Likewise a plain, powerful conviction of the cer- 
tainty of God'^s wrath denounced, and sense of some 
just judgment of God, may bring forth some tears, 
some humiliation, yea some kind of reformation. 
Did not Felix tremble, when St. Paul ** reasoned of 
righteousness, temperance, and judgment to come?'* 
Did not Ahab humble himself, when the prophet 
denounced God's judgments against him and against 
his house? Did not the Israelites oft, when they 
were in distress, and when God did not only warn 
them with his word, but smote them with his rod, 
return and seek early after God? 

And whereas they say, they have tasted of the 
heavenly gift, and of the good word of God, and of 
the powers of the world tb come; they may know, 
that such is the sweetness of God's promises, and 
such is the evidence and goodness of God's truth in 
the glad tidings of salvation, that (the common 
gift of the Spirit going with it) all the fore-men- 
tioned feelings may be wrought in men altogether 
destitute of saving grace. For did not the seed 
sown in stony and thorny ground go thus far? 
Did not those mentioned in the* Hebrews, who, not- 
withstanding all this might fall away irrecoverably, 
attain to thus much? 

Now, if men not in a state of grace may go so far, 
as hath been proved, then it must not be marvelled 
that even such, with Herod, may also reform many 

Besides^ they mistake, when they say, they are 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


changed and reformed, if still they reitain any bosom 
and beloved sin, as Herod did. To change sins, 
one sin into another, is no change of the man^ for 
he changeth the prodigality of hia youth into cove- 
tousness in old age, remainiDg a notorious sinner 
before God as well now^ as then; judge the like of 
a)I otlier; likewise to forbear the act of any sin, 
because they hav6 not the like power, occasions, 
tcroptations, or means, to commit sin Us in former 
time, this is no cliangc: sin in these respects hath 
left them, not they it. 

For true conversion and repentance doth consist 
of a true and thorough change of the whole man, 
whereby not only some actions are changed, but 
first and chiefly the whole frame and dbposition of 
the heart is changed and set aright towards God, 
from evil to good, as well as from darkness to light. 
And whereas man is naturally earthly-minded, and 
maketh himself his utmost end; so that either he 
only mindeth earthly things, or if he mind heavenly 
things, it is in an earthly manner, and to an earthly 
end, as did Jehu. If this man have truly repented, 
and be indeed converted, he hecometh heavenly- 
minded, he maketh God and his glory his chief and 
highest end; insomuch, that when he hath cause to 
mind earthly things, his will and dej^ire is to mind 
them in a heavenly manner, and to a heavenly end. 
If you would judge more fully and clearly of this 
true change, see at large the description, and signs 
of uprightness, before dehvercd. Chap. XI. page 
208, et seq. 

Last of all, there are many presume, that although 
as yet they have uo saving faith In-Cbrist,. aox aound 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


lepentance, that God will give them space aiid grace 
to repent and believe before they die. Whence it 
is they have peace for the presents 

These must give me leave to tell them, that they 
put themselves upon a desperate hazard and adventure. 
!• Who can promise unto himself one minute of 
time more than the present, since every man's breath 
is in his nostrils, ready to expire every moment? 
Besides, the Spirit saith, God doth bring wicked 
men to desolation as in a moment* And again, 
'^ He that being often warned, hardeneth his neck, 
shall suddenly be destroyed without remedy." 

2. Suppose they may have time, yet whether 
they shall have grace to believe and repent, is much 
to be doubted. 

For the longer repentance is delayed, the heart is 
more hardened, and indisposed to repcn ranee, through 
the deceitfulness of sin. And it is a judgment of 
God upon such, as are not led to repentance by the 
riches of God's goodness, forbearance^ and long* 
soifering, that he should leave them to their impeni- 
tent hearts, that cannot repent; so treasuring up unto 
themselves wrath against the day of wrath. Cus- 
tom in sin doth so root and habituate it in man, 
that it will be as hard for him by his own will and 
power to repent hereafter, he neglecting God's 
present call and offer of grace, as it is for the 
Ethiopian to change his skin, or the leopard his spots. 
It cannot be denied, but that God is free, and if 
he please, may open a door of hope and gate of 
mercy unto the most obstinate sinner, who hath 
deferred his repentance to his old age; wherefore, if 
such a one find his heart to; be broken with, remorse 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


for his former sins, and is tronbled in conscience foe 
this his sin of not accepting of God's grace when it 
was offered, I wish him to humble himself before 
God, and entertain hope. For God hath promised 
pardon to the penitent, whensoever they repent. 
And though no roan can repent when he will, yet 
such a one may hope that God is now giving him 
repentance, in that he hath touched his heart, and 
made it to be burdened with sin. 

Yet for all this hope which I give to such a man, 
know, that it is very seldom to be found, that those 
who continued to despise grace until old age, did 
ever repent: but God left them justly to perish in 
their iropenitency, because they despised the means 
of grace, and the season in which he did call them 
to repentance, and offered to them his grace, whereby 
they might repent. God dealeth with all sinners 
usually, as he said he would do, and as he did to 
Judah: ^^ Because I would have purged thee," said 
he,-— that is, I took the only course to purge thee, 
and bring thee to repentance,-— ^^ and thou wast not 
purged, therefore thou shalt not be purged from thy 
filthiness any more, till I have caused my fury to 
rest on thee." 

Thus I have endeavoured to discover and remove 
the false grounds, and misapplication of true grounds, 
whereby the conscience is deluded, an.d brought into 
a dangerous and false peace. 

To conclude, he that would not be deceived with 
a false peace instead of a true, must beware of 
obstinacy, delight in, and senselessness of sin. For 
this sears the conscience as with a hot iron. Now 
a seared conscience is quiet with a false peace, not 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


because there iK no danger; but because it doth not 
feel it. Great care must be taken^ therefore, lest 
the osnscience he seared, being made senseless and 
bard; for then k doth altogether, or for the most 
part, forbear to check or accuse for sin, be it never 
ac^ heinous. 

I'his searedness is caused by a wilful customary 
living in any sin; but especially by living in any 
gross sin, or in the allowance of, and delight in any 
known sin; also by allowed hypocrisy, and dissimula- 
tion in any thing, and by doing any thing contrary 
to the clear light of nature, planted in a man's own 
head or heart; or contrary to the clear light of grace, 
shining in the motions of the Spirit, in the checks 
of conscience, and in the instructions of the^word. 

Keep therefore the conscience tender by all means; 
(1.) By hearkening readily to the voice of the word; 
(2.) By a careful survey of your ways daily. (3.) 
JBy keeping the conscience soft with godly sorrow 
for aim (4.) By hearkening to the voice of con- 
seience admonishing and checking for sin. 

Either of these three kinds of conscience, namely, 
the blind, presumptuous, and seared conscience, will 
admit of a kind of peace, or truce rather, for a while, 
while it sleepeth; bat what God said of Cain's sin, 
must be conceived of all sin : ^^ If thou dost not well, 
sin lieth at the door." And upon what terms soever 
it lies still, and troubles not the conscience for a 
time, yet it will awake in its time, and then by as 
muck as it did admit of some pe^ce and quiet, it will 
grow more turbulent, mad, and furious; and, if God 
give not repentance, this false peace endeth (or the 
moat part Mtber.in a reprobate mind, or a desperate 
N 31 ' 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


end, even in this life, besides the hellish horrors in 
that which is to come. 

Now to the end that no man should quiet his 
heart in this false and dangerous peace, whether it 
proceed from the aforementioned causes, or any 
other, I would advise him to try his peace, whether 
it be not false, by these infaUible marks: 

1. Is any man at peace with God's enemies, al- 
lowing himself in the love of those things or persons 
which hate God and which are hated of God, such 
as are the world and the things of the world, whereby 
he denieth the power of godliness: delighting in any 
evil company, or living in any wilful or gross sin, as 
vain or false swearing, open profanation of the Sab- 
bath, malice, adultery, theft, lying, or in any of 
those mentioned, or in any known sin with allowance? 
The Holy Ghost saith of such, that the love of God 
is not in them, therefore the peace of God is not in 
them, and whosoever maketh himself a friend to his^ 
lusts and to the world, maketh himself an enemy of 
God. If any man be at peace with the flesh, the 
world, and the devil, he is not at true peace with 
God, nor God with him. If any such expect peace, 
and should ask, ^^ Is it peace?" answer may be made 
like to that which Jehu made, ^^ What have you to 
do with peace?" What peace, so long as your notori- 
ous sins and rebellions, wherein you delight, are so 
many? For he that careth not to keep a good con- 
science towards God and towards men, cannot have 
true peace of conscience. For there is no true peace 
but in a good conscience. 

2. Is any man not at peace, but at war rather, 
with God's friends, and with the things wirich God 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


loveth ; being out of love with spiritual and devout 
prayer, hearing the word, the company of God's 
people, and the like? If any man despise the things 
that God commandeth and loveth, certainly, God 
and he are not reconciled ; and whatsoever his form 
of godliness be, God esteemeth him to be yet in a 
state of perdition. For whosoever saith he knoweth 
God, but yet loveth not, and " keepeth not his com- 
mandments, he is a liar." And if any man love not 
his brother, whatsoever show of peace and friendship 
is between God and him, I am sure God saith, ^^ he 
that doth not righteousness is not of God, neither 
he that loveth not his brother;" he is a child of the 
devil, and therefore hath no true peace with God. 

3. He whose quiet of heart and conscience is 
from false peace, is willing to take it for granted, 
that his peace is sound and good ; and cannot abide 
to look into, or to inquire into his peace, to try 
whether it be true, or whether it be false or not ; be- 
ing, as it seemeth, afraid lest stirring the mud and 
filth that lieth in the bottom of his heart, he should 
disquiet it. And for this cause it is that such a 
one cannot endure a searching ministry, nor will like 
that minister who will dive into the conscience, by 
laying the heart and conscience open to the light and 
purity of God's word. 

Thus I have showed you what is a first and chief 
impediment to be removed, namely, presumption and 
false hope, if you would have true peace; for false 
hopes breed only false peace. 


Digitized byC:iOOQlC 



Concerning false Fears. 

.The second head to which I reduced impedi- 
ments to true peace, is false fear; for. if yoa doubt, 
fear, or despair of your estate, without cause, it will 
much disturb and hinder your peace. 

I. Of needful holy Fear. 

There is a holy fear and despair wrought in 
man, when God first eonvincetfa. his heart and con- 
science of sin ; whereupon, through sense of God's 
wrath and heavy displeasure,, together with a sense 
of his own disability in himself to satisfy and appease 
God's wrath, he is in great preplexity ; being out of 
all hopes to obtain God's favour, or to escape the 
vengeance of hell by any thing which he of himself 
can do or procure. This is wrought more or less 
in every man of years before conversion, as in those 
which were pricked to the heart at St. Peter's ser- 
mon, and in St. Paul himself, and in the jailor. 
This is a good necessary fear, serving to prepare 
a man for his conversion. For in God's order of 
working, he first sendeth the spirit of bondage to 
fear, before he sendeth the spirit of adoption to en- 
able a man to cry, Abba, Father. Tfaia ieary and 
trouble of conscience arising from it, is good ; and 
maketh way to true peace. 

Moreover, after that a man is converted, though 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


he have ho csnte to four dimiiatibn; yet he hath 
touch matter of fear, for as much as he is yet subject 
to many evils both of sin and pain; as, lest he olfend 
God,* and cause his angry countenance, and his judge- 
ments; also, lest he should fall back from some de* 
grees of grace received, and lest he fall into some 
dangerous sin, and so lose his evidence of heaven, 
and comforts of the Spirit. Wherefore we are com- 
manded to ^^ work out our salvation. vith fear and 
trembling," and to pass the whole time of our so« 
journtng here in fear« 

This fear, while it kecpeth due measure, causeth 
a man to be circumspect and watchful lest he fall; it 
exdteth him to repent, and quickieneth him to ask 
pardon and grace to recover, when he is fallen ; yea, 
is an excellent means to prevent trouble, and to pro- 
cure peace of conscience. But the fear of which I 
am to speak, and which, because it disturbeth true 
peace, is to be removed, is a groundless and cause- 
less fear that a man is not in a state of grace, al- 
though, he hath yielded himself to Christ, by true 
£sith and conversion: and hath not only given good 
hope to others, bat, if he would see it, hath cause 
to conceive good hope that he is indeed in a state of 

II. Of causeless Fear^ and the Springs thereof. 

This fear may arise either from natural distem- 
pers, Satan joining with them; or from spiritual 
temptations, arising from causeless doubts. 

I. Of fears which arise from natural distempers. 

By natural distempers, I mean a disposition to 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


frenzy or melancholy, in which states of body the 
spirits are corrupted through superabundance of 
choler and mekncholy, whereby first the brain, 
where all notions of things are framed, is distemper- 
ed, and the power of imagination corrupted, whence 
arbe strange fancies, doubts, and fearful thoughts. 
Then, secondly, by reason of the intercourse of the 
spirits between the head and the heart, the heart is 
distempered and filled with grief, despair, and horror, 
through manifold fears of danger, yea, of damnation; 
especially when Satan concurs with those humours, 
which as he easily can, so he readily will do, if God 

Where there is trouble of this sort, it usually 
bringeth forth strange and violent efibcts, both in 
body and mind, and that in him who is regenerate, 
as well as in him that is unregenerate. Yea, so far, 
that (which is fearful to think) even those who, when 
tliey were fully themselves, did truly fear God, have, 
in the fits of their distemper, through impotency of 
their use of reason, and through the devil's forcible 
instigation, had thoughts, and attempts of laying 
violent hands upon themselves and others, and when 
they have not well known what they have done or 
said, have been heard to break out into oaths, curs- 
ing, and other evil speeches, who were never heard 
to do thq like before. 

These troubles may be known from true trouble 
of conscience, by the strangeness, unreasonableness, 
and senselessness of their conceits in other things; 
as to think they have no heart, and to say they 
cannot do that which indeed they do, and a thousand 
other odd conceits, which standers-by see to be most 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 

295 - 

false. Whereby iany man may see that . the root of 
this disturbance is in thefancy^ and not in the heart. 

Although, both the regenerate and unregenerate, 
according as they are in a like degree distempered, 
are in most things alike; yet in this they differ; some 
beams of holiness will glance forth now and then ip 
the regenerate, which do not in the unregenerate, 
especially in the intermissions of their fits. Their 
desires will be found to be different, and if they both 
recover, the one returneth to his usual course of 
holiness with increase: the other, except God work 
with the affliction to conversion, continueth in his 
accustomed wickedness. It pleaseth God, that for 
the most part his own children who are thus dis- 
tempered, have the strength of their melancholy 
worn out and subdued before they die, at which time 
they have some sense of God's favour to their com- 
fort; but if their disease continue, it is possible they 
may die lunatics, and, if you judge by their speeches, 
despairing, which is not to be imputed to them,, but 
tolheir disease, or to Satan working by the disease; 
if they gave good testimony of holiness in former 

When these troubles are merely from bodily dis- 
tempers, though they be not troubles of conscience, 
yet they make a man incapable of the sense of peace 
of conscience. Therefore, whosoever would enjoy 
the benefit of the peace of his conscience, must do 
what in him lieth, to prevent or remove these dis- 
tempers. And because they grow for the most part 
from natural causes, therefore, natural as well as 
spiritual remedies must be used. 

1. Take heed of all such things as feed those 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


hatnours of choler and tndancfaoly, wbicli must be 
letrned of experienced noen, and of skilfinl pfayaiciaiM, 
and, when need ie, take physic. 

2. Avoid all unnecessaty solitude, and, is niucb 
as may be, keep company with such as truly fear 
God, especially with those who are wise, full of 
cheerfulness and joy in tiie Lord. 

^* Forbear all such things as stir up these 
humours; as, over much study, and musing too much 
upon any thing, likewise all sudden and violent 
passions of anger, immoderate grief, &c. 

4. Shun idleness, and, according to strength and 
means, be fully employed in some lawful busin€»s« 

5. Out of the fit, the party thus affected must 
not oppress his heart with fear of falling into it 
again, any otherwise than to quicken him to prayer, 
and to cause him to cast himself upon God. 

6. Out of the fits (and in them also, if the party 
distempered be capable) spiritual counsel is to be 
given out of God's word, wisely, according as the 
party is fit for it, whether to humble him, if he hath 
not been sufficiently humbled, or to build him up 
and comfort him, if he be already humbled. 

7. Lastly, Remember always that when the 
troubled person is himself, that he be moved to 
prayer, and that others then pray much with him, 
and at all times pray much for him. 

When these troubles are mixed, coming partly 
from natural distemper, and partly from spiritual 
temptation: then the remedy must be mixed of helps 
natural and spiritual. What the natural helps are,^ 
hath been shown, also what the spiritual in general, 
and shall be shown more particularly, in removing 
false fears arising from spiritual temptations. 

Digitized by CjOOQ IC 


The fear3 which rise for the most part from dis- 
temper of body, may be known from those which, for 
the most part, or only, rise from the spiritual temp- 
tation, thus: When the first sort are clearly resolved 
of their doubts, and brought unto some good de- 
gree of cheerfulness and comfort, they will yet, it 
may be, within a day or two, sometimes within 
an hour or two, upon every slight occasion and 
discouragement, return to their old complaints, and 
will need the same means to recover them again. 
But those whose trouble is merely out of spiritual 
temptation and trouble of conscience, although for 
the time it be very grievous, and hardly removed, 
and sometimes long before they receive a satisfying 
answer to their doubts; yet, when once they receive 
satisfaction and comfort, it doth hold and last until 
there fall out some new temptation, and new matter 
of fear. This is bepause their fancies and memories 
are not disturbed in such a manner as the other's are. 

The seeming grounds* of fears that a man is not 
in a state of grace, when yet he is, are for variety 
almost infinite. I have reduced them to this order, 
and to these heads. 

1. They who are taken wjth false fears, think 
their sins to be greater than can be pardoned. 

2m When they are driven from that, they say 
they fear God will not pardon. When they are 
driven from this, by causing them to take notice of 
the signs of God's actual love to them, which gave 
proof that he will save them. Then, 

S. They will question the truth of God's love and 

favour. But being put upon the trial whether God 

hath not already justified them, and given them 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


faith in Christ, which are sufficient proofs of his 
love; then, 

4. They will seem to have grounds to doubt 
whether they have faith, from which they are driven, 
by putting them to the trial of their sanctification: 

5. They doubt, and will object strongly that they 
are not sanctified, which being undeniably proved; 

6. They fear they shall fall away, and toot perse- 
vere to the end. Which fear being taken away 
also, and all is come to this good issue, they shall 
have no cause of disquiet or fear. 

This is the easiest, most familiar, and the most 
natural method, so far as I can judge, both in pro- 
posing, and in removing false fears. 

11. Of fears which arise from thoughts of the 
greatness of punishment and sin. 

1. Some in their fits of despair, speak almost in 
Cain^s words, saying that their punishment, which 
they partly feel, and which they most of all fear, is 
greater than they can bear, or than can be forgiven. 

I answer such: If sense and fear of wrath and 
punishment, be your trouble, I would have you not 
te busy your thoughts about the punishment ; but 
fix th^m upon your sins, which are the only cause of 
punishment ; for get deliverance from the guilt and 
power of sin, and in one and the same work you free 
yourself from the punishment. Labour therefore 
that your heart may bleed with godly sorrow for sin, 
cry out, as David did against his sin, — ** Against 
thee, thee only, have I sinned, and done this evil in 
thy sight ; that thou mightest be justified when thou 

Digitized byVjOOQlC 


speakest, and be clear when thou judgest. . Bfsfaold, 
I was shapen in iniquity; and. in sin did. my mother 
conceive me/'— so do you against yours^ confess them . 
to God, strike at the root of sin, at the sin of your na- 
ture, wherein you were conceived, aggravate your ac- 
tual sins, hide none, spare none, find out, arraign, 
accuse, condemn your sins, and yourself for them; grow 
first into an utter detestation of your sins, which have 
brought present punishment, and a sense and fear of 
;the eternal vengeance of hell-fire: then likewise grow 
into a dislike with yourself for sin, loathe yourself in 
your own sight for your iniquities, and for your 
abominations. Now when you are as a prisoner at . 
the bar, who hath received sentence of condemnation, 
when you are in your own apprehension a damned 
wretch, fearing every day to be executed; Oh, then, 
it conccrneth you, and it is your part and duty to 
turn to God, the King of kings, whose name and . 
nature is to forgive iniquity, transgression, and sins; 
and, that you may be accepted, go to him by Jesus 
Christ, whose office is to take away your sins, and 
to present you without sin to his Father; whose of- 
fice is also to procure and sue out your pardon.. 
Wherefore in Christ's name pray, and ask pardon of 
God, for his Son Jesus Christ's sake, and withal be 
as earnest in asking grace and power against your 
sin, that you may serve him in all well pleasing. 
Do this, as for your life, with all truth and earnest- 
ness; then you may, nay, ought to believe that God 
for Christ's sake hath pardoned your sin, and hath 
done away the punishment thereof. For this is ac- 
cording to the word of truth, even as true as God is, . 
who bath commanded you tg do thus, and to believe 
in him. 

Digitized by LjOOQ IC 


But 8oni6 will reply, this patting toe ipta a 'o(m-» 
sideration of my ains,. breeds all my dislress andfear, 
for I find them greater and more than can be par- 

Oh I say not so; for you can hardly commit a* 
greater sin than indeed to think and to say so. It 
is blasphemy against God ; yet this suit if you witt 
fellow God's counsel, and all others, may, and shall 
be pardoned. I intend not to extenuate and lessen: 
your sin : but you must give me leave to magnify 
God's truth and mercy, and to extol Christ's love 
and merit. However, it is true, that because sin is 
a transgression of a law of iu&xite holiness and 
equity ; and, in respect of the evil disposition of the 
heart, is of infinite intention, and would perpetuate^ 
itself infinitely, if it had time and means; and be- 
cause God, the person against whom sin is com* 
n^itted, is infinite ; therefore sin must needs contract 
an infinite guilt, and deserve infinite punishment. 

2. Consider that the price to satisfy God's justice, 
namely, the death of Christ, the only begotten Son 
of God, doth exceed all sin in infiniteness of satis** 
faction of God's justice and wrath due for sin. For 
if Christ's death be a sufficient ransom for the sins of 
all God's elect in general; then much more of thine 
in particular, whosoever thou be, and how great,: 
and how many sins soever thou hast committed, 

3. Know that the mercy of God, the forgiver.d£ 
sin, b absolutely and every way infinite* For mescy 
in God is not a quality, but is his very nature, astf > 
clear by the description of his name, proclaimed, 
Exod. xxxiv. 6. which rightly understood and be*> 
lieved, removeth all the objections which a fearful 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


heart can mdke against itself, from the consldeiatioo of 
hisjsifiSii ^ 

1. He is merciful, that is, he is compassionate) 
and, to speak after the manner of man, is one that 
hath bowels of pity, which yearn within him at the be- 
holding of thy miseries, not willing to punish and put 
thee to pain, but ready to succour and do thee good. 

But I am so viLs and so ill-deserving, that tliere is 
nothing in me to move him to pity me, and do me goodi 

2. He is gracious; whom he loveth, he 4ovetb 
freely, of his own gracious disposition; <^ I, even I, 
am he that blotteth out thy transgressions for mine 
own sake, and will not remember thy sins/' And 
when God saith he would sprinkle clean water upon 
sinners, and that he would give tliem a new heart. 
Sac. ^^ not for your'sakes do I this," saith the Lord 
God. That you should be sensible ef your own 
misery, and then, in the sense thereof, that God 
may be inquired after, and sought unto for mercy, 
is al] which he expecteth from you to move him to 
pity and mercy; and such is his graciousness, that he 
will work this sense and this desire in you, that he 
may have mercy. 

But I have a long time provoked him ! 

8* He is. long-suffering towards you, " net will- 
ing that you should perish, but that you should 
come to repentance;" he waiteth still for your re- 
pentance aed reformation, that you may be saved. 

Yea, but I am destitute of all goodness and gr^ce- 
to turn unto him, or do any thing that may please 
him I 

4. He is abundant in goo^ess an4 kindness; he 
that hath been abundant towards others heretofore 

Digitized byC:iOOQlC 


in giving them grace, and making them good, his 
store is not diminished, but he hath all grace and 
goodness to communicate to you also, and to make 
you good. 

Yea, but I fear, though God can, yet God will 
not forgive me, and give me grace ! 

5. He is abundant in truth, not only the good- 
ness of his gracious disposition maketh him willing, 
but the abundance of bis truth bindeth him to be 
willing, and doth give suflScient proof unto you that 
he is willing. He hath made sure promises to take 
away your sin, and to forgive it ; and not yours only, 
but reserveth mercy for thousands. Believe there- 
fore that God both can and will forgive you. 

Yea, but my sins are such and such; innumer- 
able, heinous, and most abominable. I am guilty of 
sins of all sorts ! 

6. He forgiveth iniquity, transgression, and sin. 
He is the God that will subdue all your iniquities, 
and cast all your sins into the bottom of the sea. 

Yea, but I renew my sins daily ! 

7. I answer out of the Psalm — His mercy is an 
everlasting mercy, " his mercy endureth for ever," 
Ps. cxviii. 1.: he biddeth you to ask forgiveness of 
sin daily; therefore he can and will forgive sin daily: 
yea, if you sin seventy times seven in a day, and 
shall confess it to God with a penitent heart, he will 
forgive, for he that biddeth you be so merciful to 
your brother, will himself forgive much more, when 
you seek unto him. 

But I have not only committed open and gross sins, 
both before and since I had knowledge of God; but 
I have been a very hypocrite, making profession of 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


God, and yet daily committing grievous sins against' 
him ! 

8. What then? Will you say your sins are unpar- 
donable? God forbid. But say, I will follow the 
counsel which God gave to such abominable hypo- 
crites. " Wash ye, make you clean." I will, by 
God's grace, wash my heart from iniquity, and my - 
hands from wickedness, by washing myself in the 
laver of regeneration, bathing myself in Christ's 
blood, and in the piire water of the word of truth, 
applying myself to them, and them to me by faith. 
Say, in this case, " I will hear what God will speak." 
And know, that if you will follow his counsel, if you 
will hearken to his reasoning, and embrace his gracious 
offer made to you in Christ Jesus, the issue will be 
this, though your sins have been most gross, double 
dyed, even as crimson and scarlet; they shall be as 
wool, even white as snow. God will then speak 
peace unto you, as unto others of his saints; only 
he will forbid you to return to folly. 

For not only those who committed gross sins 
through ignorance before their conversion, as did 
Abraham in adolatry, and St. Paul in persecuting ; 
nor yet only those who committed gross sins through 
infirmity after their conversion, as did Noah by 
drunkenness, and Lot by incest also, and Peter by 
denying and forswearing his master Jesus Christ, 
obtained mercy, because they sinned ignorantly and 
of infirmity; but also those that sinned against know- 
ledge and conscience, both before and after conver- 
sion; sinning with a high hand, as Manasses before, 
and (in the matter of Uriah) David after, conversion, 
they obtained like mercy, and had all their sins for- 
given. Why are these examples recorded in scrip- 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


tnre, but for poUerns to sinners, yea to snosl notbri* 
ous sinners of all sorts, who should in after-times 
believe in Christ Jesus unto etemd life? 

Be willing therefore to be bebfrfden to God for 
forgiveness, and believe in Christ for forgiveness, 
which when you do, you may be assured that you 
never yet committed any sin which is not, and which 
shall not be forgiven* 

For was it not tbe end, wliy Christ came into the 
world, that be might save sinners, yea, the chief of 
sinners, as well as others? Was he not wounded 
for transgressions, namely, of all sorts? Is not the 
end of his coming in bis gospel to call sinners to 
repentance? What sinners doth he mean there, but 
such as you are, who are laden and burdened with 
your sin? Doth he not say, *^ If any man sin»" ob- 
serve, if any man, " we have an advocate with the 
Father, Jesus Christ the r^bteous?" Who by being 
made a curse for you, hath redeemed you from the 
curse of the whole law; therefore from the curse due 
unto you for your greatest sin. 

However, it is impossible for a notorious sinner, 
yea, for any sinner, by his own power or worth, to 
enter into the kingdom of heaven ; yet, know, what 
is impossible with man, is possible with God. ^Ms 
any thing too hard for the Lord?" He can alter and 
renew you, and give you faith and repentance; he 
can make these things possible to you that believe; 
yea, ^' all things are possible to him that believeth." 
Yea, you will say. If I did believe. Why, what if 
you do not believe? It is not hard with him, if you 
come to his means of faith, if you hearicen to the 
recepts and promises of the word, and consider 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


that the Gbd of truth speaketfa in th«iii;>I saj^ it It 
not hard for him, in the use of these means, to cause 
you to believe* 

Wherefore udtherigreatness of sin, nor muhitttilea 
of sins, should, because of their greatness and multh» 
tude, make you utterly despair of salvation, or fear 
damnation: when once you can believe, or but will 
and desire to obey and believe, the great cause of 
fear is past. 

I know if you never had sinned, you would not 
fear damnation. Now to a man whose sins are remit* 
ted, his sins (though sin dwell in him) are as if they 
were not, or never had been. For they iare blotted 
out of God's remembrance. " I, even I, am he," saith 
God, ^^ that blotteth out thy transgressions for my 
name's sake, and will not remember thy sins." And 
**Mrhois likeihee," saith the prophet, "that pardoneth 
iniquities," &c. " he will have compassion upon us, he 
will subdue our iniquities, and will cast all our sins 
into the bottom of the sea." A debt, when it is paid 
by the surety, putteth the principal out of debt, though 
*h0 paid never a penny of it himself. The Holy 
Gliost speaketh comfortably, saying, that God doth 
find no sin in them whose sins are pardoned. ^^ In 
those days, and at that time, saith the Lord, the 
iniquity of Israel shall be sought for, and there shall 
be none; and the sins of Judah, and they shall not 
be found,"— 4>ut how may this be? He giveth the 
reason,/^ for I will pardod them whom I reserve." 

If yon believe that God can pardon any sin, even 
the least, you have like reason to believe that God 
can pardon all, yea, the greatest; for if God can do 
any thing, he can do every thing, because he is infinite* 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


He ctn as easily say, *< Thy sins are forgiven thee," 
all thy sins are forgiven thee, as to say, << Rise and 
walk." He can as well save one that hath been long 
dead, rotten, and stinking in his sin, as one newly 
fallen into sin. For he can as easily say, <* Laza- 
rus, come forth," as, <* Damsel, I say to thee, arise." 
Lastly, To make an end of removing this fear, I 
ask thee, who are troubled with the greatness of thy 
sins past, and with fear that they can never be par- 
doned. How stand you affected to present sins? 
Do you hate and loathe them? Do you use what 
means you can to be free from them? Are you out 
of love with yourself, and humbled because you have 
indulged them to God's dishonour, and youi[ own 
hurt? And do you resolve, through faith in Christ 
Jesus, to return from your evil ways, and to enter 
upon a holy course of life, if God shall please to 
enable you; and is it your hearty desire to have this 
grace to be able? And are you afraid, and have 
you now a care lest you fall knowingly into sin; 
then, let Satan, and a fearful heart object what they 
can, you may say, though my sins have been great afid 
heinous, for which I loathe myself and am ashamed, 
yet now I see that they were not only pardonable, 
but are already, through the rich mercy of God, par- 
doned. For these are signs of a new heart and a 
new mind. Now, to whomsoever God giveth the 
least measure of saving grace, to them hath he first 
given pardon of sin, and will yet abundantly pardon. 
For he saith, *' Let the wicked forsake his way, and 
the unrighteous man his thoughts; and let him re- 
turn to the Lord, and he will have mercy upon him; 
and to our God, for he wiU abundantly pardon." 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


IIL Fears concerning not being elected^ removed. ^ 

There are others who make no doubt of God's 
power, they believe he can forgive them; but they 
fear, yea, strongly conclude, that he will not pardon 
them, and that because they are reprobates (as they 
say) for they see no signs of election, but much to 
the contrary. 

I answer these thus. When your consciences 
are first wounded with a sense of God's wrath for 
sin, it is very like, that before you have believed and 
repented, you cannot discern any signs of God's 
favour, but of his anger; for as yet you are not ac- 
tually in a state of grace, and in his favour. And 
oftentimes after the Christian doth believe, though 
there be always matter enough to give proof of his 
election, yet he cannot always see it. If you be in 
either of these states, suppose the worst, yet you 
have no reason to conclude that you are repro- 

It is true, that God, before the foundation of the 
world, fully determined with himself, whom to choose 
to salvation by grace, to which also he ordained them;^ 
and whom to pass by, and leave in their sins, for 
which he determined in his just wrath to condemn 
them. But who these be, is a secret, which even 
the elect themselves cannot know, until they be 
efiectually called, nay, nor being called, until by 
some experience and proofs of their faith and holiness, 
they do understand the witness of the Spirit, which 
testifieth to their spirits, that they are the children of 
God; and do make their calling and election, which 
was always sure in God, sure to themselves. But' 

Digitized by LjOOQ IC 


in point of reprobation, namely, that God hath passed 
them by, to. perish everlastingly in their wickedness, 
no man living can know it, except he know that he 
hath sinned the sin against the Holy Ghost, that 
unpardonable sin. 

For God calleth men at all ages and timesj some 
in their youth, some in their middle age, some in their 
old age; yea, some have been called at their last hour- 
No w let it be granted, that you cannot, by searching 
into yourselves, find the signs of effectual calling, 
which yet may be in you, though your dim eyes, 
cannot perceive them ; nay, suppose that you are not 
yet effectually called, here is no cause for you utterly 
to despair, and say, you are reprobates. How know 
you that God will not call you before you die? 

It were a far wiser and better course for you, who 
will be thus hasty in judging yourselves to be repro- 
bates, to busy yourselves first with other things. 
Acquaint yourselves with God*s revealed will in hir 
word. Learn to know what God hath cpmrnauded 
you to do, and do that; also what he hath threatened, 
and fear that; and what he hath promised, and believe 
and rest on that. After you have done this, you 
may look into yourselves, and there you shall read 
your election written in golden and great letters. 

For God never intended that the first lesson which 
a Christian should learn, should be the hardest, and 
highest that can be learned, taken out of the book 
of his eternal counsel and decree; and so to descend 
to the A. B. C. of Christianity; which were a course 
most perplexed and preposterous. But his will is, 
that his scholars and children should learn out of his 
written word here on earth, first, that God made all 
things, and that he made man good, and that men, 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


b^arkening to Satan, fdund aut evil devices, and ad 
fell from grace, and from God, and 8o both they, and 
the whole w.orld that came of their loins, became 
liable to eternal damnation. Next, God would have 
you to learn, that be, in bis infinite wisdom, goodness^ 
and mercy, thought of, and concluded a new covenant 
of grace; for the affecting wbereof, he found out and 
appointed a way and means to pacify his wrath, by 
satisfying hi$ justice, punishing sin in man's nature, 
by which he opened a way unto his mercy, to show 
i^t to whom he would ; namely. He gave his only Son, 
very God, to become very man; and being made a 
common person and surety in man's stead, died, and 
endured the punishment due to the ain of man, and 
rose again, and was exalted to sit at God's right hand 
to reign, having all authority committed unto him. 
Thus he made the new covenant of grace, established 
in his S^n Jesus Christ; the tenor and condkion 
whereof required on man's part is, that man accept 
of and enier into this covenant, believing in Christ, ' 
in whom it is established; then, whosoever believeth 
in him, shall not die, but have everlasting life. This 
God did in his wisdom, justice, mercy, and love to 
man, that he himself might be just, and yet a-justi- 
fier of him that is of the faith of Jesus. And he 
hath therefore given his word and sacraments, and 
hath called, and hath given gifts to his ministers, 
thereby to beget, and increase faith in men, by pub- 
lishing this good news, and by commanding them, 
aa in Christ's stead, in God's name, to believe, and 
to be reeondled to God, and to live no longer accord- 
ing to the will of their old snasters, the devil,* the 
world, and the flerii, under whom they were in cursed 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


bondage; but according to the wiD of him that re- 
deemed them, in holiness and righteousness, whose 
service is a perfect and blessed freedom. 

Now, when you have learned these lessons first, 
and by looking into yourselves can find faith and 
new obedience, then by this your effectual calling, 
you may safely ascend to that high point of your pre- 
destination, which will give you comfort, through 
assurance that you shall never fall away. 

When you observe this order in learning your 
election to life, it will not minister unto you matter 
of curious and dangerous dispute, either with God 
or man ; but of high admiration, thanksgiving, and 
unspeakable comfort, causing you to cry out with the 
apostle, ^* O the depth of the riches both of the 
wisdom and knowledge of God." And, *< Blessed 
be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, 
who hath chosen us in him before the foundation of 
the world, that we should be holy and without blame 
before him in love: 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 his well beloved." 

IV. Of Fears concerning the Sin against the 
Holy Ghost, 

There are yet some, who having heard that there 

is a sin against the Holy Ghost, and that it is un- 

•^ardottable, are full of fears that they have commit- 

ed (hat sin, thence concluding that they are repro- 

lates, for they say, that they have sinned wilfully 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


against knowledge and conscience^ since they received 
the knowledge of the truth, and tasted of the heavenly 
gift, and of the good word of God. 

If you who thus object, have sinned against know- 
ledge and conscience, you have much cause for hum- 
bling yourself before God; confessing it to him, asking 
pardon of him, and grace to believe and repent, both 
which you must endeavour by all means. Yet I see 
no cause why you should conclude so desperately, 
that you have sinned against the Holy Ghost, and 
are a reprobate. For as few in comparison, though 
too many, commit this sin, so few know what it is. 

All sin against knowledge and conscience is not 
this sin. . Nor yet all wilful sinning. It is not any 
one sin against the law, nor yet the direct breach of the 
whole Jaw, nor every malicious opposing of the gospel, 
if it be of ignorance; neither is it every blasphemy, 
or persecution of the gospel, and of those that profess 
the truth, if these be done out of ignorance or pas- 
sion; nor yet is it every apostacy, and falling into 
gross sins of divers sorts, though done against 
knowledge and conscience; yet this sin against the 
Holy Ghost containeth all these, and more. It is a 
sin against the gospel, and free offer and dispensation 
of grace and salvation by Christ, throagh the Spirit. 
Yet, it is not any particular sin against the gospel, 
nor yet a rejecting of the whole gospel, if in igno- 
rance; nor yet every denying of Christ, or sudden 
revolting from the outward profession of the gos- 
pel, when it is of infirmity, through fear, and such 
like, temptation ; neither is it called the sin against 
the Holy Ghost, and is unpardonable, because it 
is committed against the essence, or person, of the 
Holy Ghost, for the essence of the three persona in 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


the Trinity is all one; and the person of the Holj 
Ghost is not more excellent than the person of the 
Father and the Son; but it is called the sin against 
the Holy Ghost, and becometh unpardonable, be- 
etase it is against the office of the Holy Gbott, and 
against the gracious operations of the Holy Ghost, and 
therein against the whole blessed Trinity, all .whose 
works, out of themselves, are consummate, and per- 
fected in the work of the Holy Ghost. Moreover, 
know that it is unpardonable, not in respect of God's 
power, but in respect of his will; he having, in his 
holy wisdom, determined never to pardon it. And 
good reason why he should will not to pardon lt» in 
respect of the kind of the sin, if you will observe it; 
it being a wilful and malicious refusing of pardon 
upon such terms as the gospel doth offer it, scorning 
to be beholden unto God for it. You may perceive 
what it is, by this description : 

The sin against the Holy Ghost is an utter, 
wilful, and spiteful rejection of the gospel of salvation 
by Christ, together with an advised and absolute 
falling away from the profession of it, so far, that, 
against former knowledge and conscience, a man doth 
maliciously oppose and blaspheme the Spirit of 
Christ, in the word and ordinances of the gospel, and 
motions of the Spirit in them ; having resisted, re- 
jected, and utterly quenched all those common and 
more inward gifts and motions wrought upon . their 
hearts and affections, which sometimes were enter-" 
tained by them; insomuch, that out of hatred of the 
Spirit of life in Christ, they crucify to themselves 
afresh the Son of God, and do put him, both in bis 
ordinances of religion, and in his members, to open 
shame, treading underfoot the Son of God> ootmliDg 

Digitized by CjOOQTC 


the blood of the covenant, wherewith they were 
sanctified, an unholy thing; doing despite to the 
Spirit of grace. If you carefully look into those 
places of the scripture, which speak of this sin; and 
also observe the opposition which the apostle maketb 
bstween sinning against the law, and sinning against 
the gospel, you will clearly find out the nature of this 
sin. Matt. xii. 24, 31, 32. Mark iii. 28 — 30. 
Luke xii. 10. Heb. vi. 4 — 6. x. 26 — 29. 

But to resolve you out of this doubt (if you be 
not overcome with melancholy, for then you will 
answer you know not what, which is to be pitied 
rather than regarded) I would ask you, who think 
you have committed the sin against the Holy Ghost, 
these questions: Doth it grieve you, that you have 
committed it? Could you wish that you had not 
committed it? If it were to be committed, would 
you not forbear it, if you could choose? Should 
you esteem yourself beholden to God, if he would 
make you partaker of the blood and Spirit of his Son, 
thereby to pardon and purge your sin, and to give 
you grace to repent? Nay, are you troubled that 
you cannot bring your heart unt6 a sense of desire 
of pardon and grace ? If you can say. Yea ; then, 
although the sin or sins which trouble you, may be 
some fearful sin, of which you must be exhorted 
speedily to repent; yet certainly it is not the sin 
against the Holy Ghost; it is not that unpardonable 
sin, that dn unto death. For he who committeth this 
sin cannot relent, neither will he be beholden to God 
for pardon and grace, by Christ^s blood and Spirit; 
lie cannot desire to repent: but he is given over,* in 
God's just judgment, unto such a reprobacy of mind^ 
O 31 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


deachess of conscience, and rebellion of wQl, and lb 
such a height of hatred and malicei that he is so 
blasphemously and despitefully bent against the Spirit 
nf holiness, that it much pleaseth him, ratlier than 
any way troubles him, that he hath so maliciously 
and blasphemously rejected, or fiillen from, persecut- 
ed, and spoken blasphemously against the good way 
of salvation by Christ, and against the gracious 
operations of the Spirit, atid against the members of 
Christ; although he was once convinced clearly, that 
this is the only way of salvation, and that those graces 
and gifts were from God, and that they were the dear 
children of God, whom he doth now despise. 

V. Of Fears arising from an accusing Conscience. 

Others, if not the same persons, object thus : God 
will certainly condemn, because St. John hath said) 
]f their hearts condemn them, God is greater than 
their hearts, I John iii. SO: hence (hey infer, God 
m\\ condemn them much more. For, aay they, 
their hearts do condemn them. 

There is a double judgment by the heart and con- 
science. It judgeth a man's state or person^ whether 
he be in a state of grace, yea or no. Also, it judgeth 
a man's own particular actions, whether they be good 
or no. I take it, that this place of John is not to 
be understood of judging or condemning theperson^ 
for God in his final judgment doth not judge accord- 
iag to what a man's weak and erroneous conscience 
judgeth, making it the rule of his judgment to con- 
demn or absolve any. For many a man, in his pre- 
sumption, justifieth himself in his life, when yet God 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


#in oonflemn him ui.tb.e world to come; and many 
a distresaied soul like the prodigal, and b.umble pub- 
lican, condemneth himself, when yet Gpd will ab- 
solve him. For a man may have peace^ with God ; 
yet God, for reasoos best known to his wisdom, doth 
not presently speak peace to his conscience, as it was 
with David ; in which ca3e, man doth judge of his 
estate otherwise than God dgth. 

This place, is to be understood of judging of par-* 
iicular actions, namely, whether a man love his broth- 
er» not in word and tongue only, but in deed and truth, 
according to the exhortation, 1 John ifi. 18^^22^ 
which, if* his conscience could testify for faim, then it 
might assure his heart befo.r^ God,. and give it bold- 
jiess to pray unto him, in c^nfijdence to receive whatso- 
ever he did ask according to his will. But if his own 
conscience could cojndemn him of not loymg hi$ 
brother in deed and in truth; then God,, who i^ 
greater than his heart, knowing all thiugs, must 
needs condemn him therein much more. This is 
the full scope of the place. Yet this I must n^eds 
say, that the Holy Ghost hath instanced in su^h au 
act, namely, of hearty loving the brethren, which is 
an infallible sign of beiiig in a state of grace: 
whereby (except in case of extreme melancholy, or 
violent temptation) a man may judge, whether at 
present he be translated frpoK death to lifie. 

If any shall think thje place to be understood of 
judging the person, he must distinguish between 
that judgment which tlie he^rt doth give rightly, 
and that which it givetb errqupously. But suppose 
that, you trying youraelves by .this, y^iur hearts do 
condemn, you. of not loying the bretiuren, can you 

Digitized by CjOOQIC 


conclude hence, that you shall be finally damned? 
God forbid. All that you can infer, is this; you 
cannot have boldness to pray unto him until you love 
them ; nor can you assure yourselves that you will 
have your petitions granted. And the worst you 
can conclude is, that now, for the present, you are 
not in a state of grace, or at least you want proof of 
being in a state of grace. You must then use all 
God*s means of being ingrafted into Christ, and 
must love the children of God, that you may have 
proof thereof. Did Paul love the brethren, when 
he breathed out threatening ; and was, as he himself 
saith, ^' mad against them?" Was he at that time a 
reprobate ? Did he not afterwards, being converted, 
so love God's people, that he could be content to 
spend, and be spent himself, for them? So, many 
thousands,^ whose consciences for the present may 
justly condemn them of not loving those that are in- 
(Teed God's children, may yet love them hereafter, 
as dearly as their own souls. 

Some will yet say, Certainly we are reprobates : 
for we have, according to the command of the 
apostle, tried whether we be in the faith, or no; and 
whether Christ be in us ; but we find neither : the 
apostle saith, We know these to be in us, else we 
are reprobates. 

By reprobate, in this place, is not meant one that 
is not elect ; for none of the elect can before their 
conversion know, by any search, that they are in the 
faith, or that Christ is in them : for that cannot be 
known which yet is not« Many are not converted 
until they be thirty, forty, or fifty years old. Will 
you say, these in their younger years were repro- 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


bates ? You may say, they then were iiv a state of 
condemnation, and children of wrath, but not repro* 
bates. Besides, a roan must not be said not to be 
in the faith, and not to have Christ in him, because 
he doth not know so much. For many have faith 
and are in Christ, yet do not always know it. 

The word reprobate, because it is ordinarily un- 
derstood, by our common people, for a man ordained 
to condemnation ; is too harsh. 

The words now rendered ** except ye be reprobates," 
may, as I judge, rather be translated thus: Except 
you be unapproved, or except you be without proof^ 
namely, of your being in the faith, and of Christ's 
being in you, whereof you outwardly make profes- 
sion. As if the apostle had said. If upon trial you 
cannot find that you are in the faith, &c. you are 
unapproved Christians. Either you have yet only 
n mere form of Christianity, and, like false cohi, or 
reprobate silver, are but hypocrites and counterfeits; 
or if you be Christians in truth, yet you are unex- 
perienced Christians, and without proof of it to 

Some may reply. If I find upon trial that I am a 
counterfeit, may I not then judge myself to be a re- 

No. For, first, you may err in judging of your- 
self. Secondly, if you do not err, you can judge 
only this, that you are not yet in a iState of grace : 
but in the use of the means, you may be. God can 
as well convert a hypocrite, as a pagan. For 
though now you be dross and refuse, you may ere 
long be pure gold. For God, in making vessels of 
honour, doth more than all earthly kings, and all 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


their goldsmiths can do:. for they, by their preroga-^ 
tive and skifl, cati make current coin, and rich 
vessels, if they havd pure metal to work upon.: but 
they cannot make good metal df base stuff, nor make 
gold of brass. Bftt such is the power of God's word 
and Spirit, that whereas they find you base and 
drossy stuff, they^ by imprinting the character and 
stamp of Grod's image upon your hearts, do trans* 
form you ^^ into the same image, from glory te 
glory, even as by "the Spirit of the Lord," As 
soon as you are truly anointed with this Spirit, yon 
shall become g&od gold and silver veesek of honour, 
^fitted for the Lord's use whereunto you were ap- 

VI. Fears arising from late Mepentance^ answered. 

There are yet others, who object fearfully, saying 
that they are castaways, and that God will not have 
mercy on them, because now it is too late ; they have 
passed the time and date of their conversion, they 
therefore will not use, or at least have no heart in 
using God's means to convert them, such as prayer, 
reading, hearing the word, &c. Nor yet willingly 
will suffer others to pray either with them, or for 
them ; and all because they think it is now too late, 
and in vain; mistaking this, and such other scrip 
tures: " Because I have called," saith God, " and 
you have refused— they shall call on me, and I will 
not answer;" and because they tliink they sin when 
they pray, and hear the word, and that the more 
means is used to save them, their condemnation shall 
be the more increased. Thus Satan and a fearful 
heart delude many. 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


It must be acknowledged, tbiat Gt)d would have 
nl^men ^* Walk and work while they have light,'' be- 
cause ^* the night will come on, when no man can 
work," And " whilst it is called to-day/' he would 
have-tfveiy inei^twD, and accept of grace offered j 
aiid not to harden their hearts against it. And our 
Saviour bewaileth Jerusalem, because they despised 
the " day of their visitation/' All which ahoweth, 
that God hath his set period of time, between his first 
and last ofier of grace, which being passed, he will 
oifer it DO more; and that justly, because they took 
fiot his offer when they might. And this time is 
kept so ^cret with God, that if he offer grace to- 
tlay, who can tell whether he will offer it to-morrow; 
oi* whethw he will offer it again ? Who knoweth 
whether God will take him from the means of salva- 
tion, or will take the means of salvation from him ? 
All this otir holy and wise God hath revealed in his 
word, to make men wise to take the opportunity and 
time of grace while it is offered. Wherefore, who- 
msoever have neglected their first times and ofifers of 
•grace, have sinned and played the fool egregiously ; 
^or which they have cause to be much humbled. 
-But. for you to conclude hence that the date and 
lime of your conversion is out, this hath no sufficient 
ground. For it is not possible for you to kuow, 
tbat your time of conversion is past all recovery. 
•But you should rather for the present time believe, 
and hopethat it is not past. Indeed, presumptuously to 
put off rc^ceiving grace until to-morrow, is foolish and 
dangerous ; but if God give you time till to-morrow, 
that you Kve, and it can be said to day ; so long as 
you yet. Kve, and the means of salvation are not from 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


you, either in their exercise, or out of your remem- 
berance ; but you do yet live to hear what God hath 
commanded you to do, and to hear what good things 
he yet oflfereth unto you with Christ ; or if the means 
be taken from you, or you are detained from them 
by sickness, &c. so long as you yet live to call to re- 
membrance what God hath commanded you to be- 
lieve and do, you cannot say the time is too late, if 
you do yet condemn yourselves for refusing grace 
heretofore, and are now willing and desirous to ac- 
cept of it. Moreover, would you now, with all your 
heart, use the means of salvation, and endeavour to 
believe and repent, if you thought it were not too 
late ? And doth it grieve you that you have ne- 
glected the opportunity? And would you gain and 
redeem that lost time, if you knew how ? Then, I 
dare in the name of God assure you, that the date 
of your conversion is not expired. It is not too late 
for you to turn unto the Lord. " While it is to-day,'* 
I may boldly say, " harden not your heart:" which, if 
you do not, you must know that now is an accept- 
able time, now is the day and time of your salvation. 
At what time soever God doth send his ministers 
unto you, by whom God doth beseech you, they en- 
treating you, as now I do, in Christ's stead, that 
you would be reconciled to God, this is the accepted 
day, if you will be entreated by them; the day 
wherein God will accept of you is not passed. 
Moreover, at what time soever, and by what means 
soever, any man shall humble himself for sin, and 
seek the grace of God in Christ Jesus, the date of 
God's acceptance of him is not expired. Learn 
this in the example of Manasses, and many others, 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


who refused grace in their younger time, yet were 
converted in their age. You have God's express 
word for it, who saith, ^^ From the days of your 
fathers," that is, for a long time, " ye are gone away 
from mine ordinances, and have not kept them ; re- 
turn unto me, and I will return unto you, saith the 
Lord of Hosts." 

But may not a man pray too late, and seek re- 
pentance in vain, as Esau did, ^^ who found no place 
of repentance, though he sought it carefully with 
tears?" Did not the foolish virgins seek to enter 
into the bride chamber, but were not admitted? 
And did not our Saviour say, ^^ Many shall seek to 
enter in, and shall not be able ?" 

No man can ask grace and forgiveness of sins too 
late, if he ask for grace and power against sin hearti- 
ly ; but a man may ask a temporal blessing, or the 
removal of a temporal evil, when it may be too late. 

As for Esau's careful seeking of repentance, you 
must understand it not of his own repentance from 
his profaneness, and from other dead works, but of 
his father Isaac's repentance : he would have had his 
father to change his mind, and to have given him 
the birth-right, which was already bestowed upon 

Whereas the foolish virgins did seek to enter into 

the bride-chamber when the door was shut; know, 

that this is a parable, and must not be urged beyond 

its general scope, which is to show, that insincere 

professors of Christianity, such as have only a form 

of godliness, without the power of it, although they 

will not live the life of the righteous, yet they wish 

their end might be like theirs; and because of their 


Digitized by VjOOQIC 



outward profession of Christ's name in this, life, 
they tocurely expect eternal life; but forasmuch be- 
fore their death, they did not provide the oil of truth 
and holiness, therefore at the day of judgment, they 
shall be disappointed of entering into heaven, on 
which, in the time of their life, they did so much 

The same answer may be given unto that place, 
Luke xiii. 24. Yet you mistake, when you say, 
that Christ saith, Many shall strive to enter, and 
^hall not be able. He saith, '^ Strive to enter in at 
the strait gftte; for many I say to you, shall seek to 
enter, and shall not be able:" he doth not say, 
Many shall strive to enter. 

There is a great difference in the signification of 
the words striving and seeking ; seeking imports 
OtAy a bare professing of Christ, hearing the word, 
ai)d receiving the sacraments. For thus did the 
men spoken of by our Saviour, who are said not to be 
able to enter. But to strive to enter, is to do all 
these and more; it is to strive in seeking for him, 
80 that they take up their cross and follow him ; they 
give their hearts to him, as well as their names; 
they are hearty and sincere in praying, hearing, re* 
ceiving; they strive to sufedue their lusts, which of- 
fend Christ, and strive to be obedient to his will, as 
well as to believe his promises, and to hope for hap<^ 
piness ; this is to strive. Now, never one did thus 
strive in seeking to enter (though it were the last 
day in his life) that was rejected, and not received. 
Wherefore say not. It is too late, but say. The more 
time I have lost, the more cause is there now that I 
should seek my salvation in earnest, and not lose 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


IUB9 in qnestiODiDg^ whether I maj be luxepted or 

VII. Fears qfmisuung the Means of Grace removed. 

And whereas you 8aid» you are afraid to use the 
moans of aalvaiion, for fear of increasing your guilt 
and. eoudemnatiou thereby; hereby you xnay see^ 
that, this is but the malice and subtilty of the devil, 
by keeping you from the means, to keep you from 
salvation. For it is most false to say, that to pray, 
bear the word, &c. is to increase your sin, because 
you cannot perform them as you should, and as you 
would. I am sure, it is a greater sin in you to for* 
bear these necessary duties out of despair that they . 
shall not profit you, or that you shall not be accepted 
of God. You should think thus : If I do not use 
the means of salvation, I skalL certainly perish ever-» 
lastingly; but if I do pray, hear, &c. I may be saved.; 
therefore,^ in obedience to God, I will do as well as 
I can. But little doth • a man know how well he 
may do, through the strength of Christ, if he would 
endeavour; neither can a man conceive how accept* 
able a little endeavour shall be, if he do but desire 
to be true in his endeavour. For as God's power is 
seen in a man's weakness, so is God's grace seen in 
man'a insufficiency. Wh^n we are weak, then God 
in us can be strong. And when we in humility like 
our services worst, then^ through Christ, God may 
be best pleased with them. But, whatever you do, 
neglect not, nor absent yourselves from exercises of 
religion; for the weakest observances, where truth 
189 are far more acceptable than entire omissions. 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


Wherefore^ if, as you say, you would not increase 
your sin, and thereby your damnation, be willing to 
use, and to join with others in the use of all good 
means of salvation ; then,^ if you be not saved, yet 
you shall have the less punishment. But you may 
be assured, that if in obedience to God's command- 
ments you shall pray, hear the word, receive the 
sacrament, and have communion and conversation 
with those that fear God, you shall be saved in the 
end : believing in Christ Jesus. 

If you do not yet feel benefit and comfort, when 
you use these means of salvation, according to yonr 
desire, yet you must wait the good hour both of grace 
and comfort, even as the impotent people did, who 
lay '^ waiting for the angel's coming to move the 
waters," that they might be healed of their diseases, 
at the pool of Bethesda. For if, when God hideth 
his face, you will wait and look for him, th^n God 
will wait his time to be gracious, and blessed shall 
you be that wait for him. It may be, it cometh 
justly upon you, that God should make you wait his 
leisure, and cause you to buy wisdom with dear ex- 
perience, because you did once account it an easy 
matter to believe and repent, and therefore you did 
liot take the first ofiers, but made God wait. If it 
were thus, yet despaii' not of grace; only be hum- 
bled. For ^* God doth not deal with u& after our 
sins, nor reward us after our iniquities," but accord- 
ing to his rich mercy and promise, made to us in 
Christ Jesus. 

d by Google 


* VIII. Fean arising from doubts of God* s Love 

There are many, who have true proofs that they 
are the chosen of God, and have reason to think 
that God not only can, but will do them good ; yet 
because they will deny that to be bestowed upon 
them, and to be in them, which indeed is, therefore 
they fear, and are causelessly disquieted. I would 
have such to consider, first, whether they have hot 
in them already evident proofs and signs of God's 
effectual love towards them in Christ ? These will 
acknowledge, that it is most true, that if they were 
sure God did love them, they should not fear; but 
this is all their doulft, that God doth not love them. 
1. Doubts of God's love because of afflictions, 

Some give this reason of their doubt : God hath 
and still doth severely afflict them ; yea, ever since 
they have professed the name of Christ, they are in 
something or other chastened daily ; insomuch, that 
they seem to be in the condition of those whom God 
threatened to curse in every thing they put their 
hands unto, Deut. xxviii. 20. Therefore, say they, 
God doth not love us. 

Such weak and inconsiderate reasonings are inci- 
dent to those whom God truly loveth. Did not the 
holy men of God reason, and conclude thus ? But 
when God's children do thus, it is in their haste; 
before they are well advised what they think or say, 
** For I said in my haste, I am cut off from before 
thine eyes." And whence is it? Is it not from 


Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


their ignorance and weakness, being carried away by 
sense ? " So foolish was I, and ignorant," saith the 
Psalmist. But when they come to themselves, 
and learn by God's word and Spirit, that it is not 
outward prosperity will make wicked men happy, 
neither is it outward affliction that can make a good 
man miserable; then they will neither iqiplatid nor 
enyy the prosperity of the wicked, nor yet miscon- 
strue, nor repine at their own afflictions. For they 
learn, that no man can know God's love or hatred 
by any outward thing, that doth befal the sons of 
men in this life. 

They learn, that God doth often smile on his ene- 
mies, and that he doth often frown upon, is angry 
with, and doth correct those whom he dearly loveth, 
even as a father doth his children. 

They learn by the word likewise, that God hath 
excellent ends in all this, even in respect of them, 
and for their good ; namely, for trial of their graces, 
for prevention of sin, and to remove sin, %y bring- 
ing them to repentance, that they might •* be made 
partakers of his holiness." Besides, herein he doth 
much glorify himself, showing that he is " wonderful 
in counsel, excellent in working ;" causing the afflic- 
tion to work for his glory, in his people's good; yea, 
you may learn by your own experience, that the 
child of God in his infirmity and passion, when he 
is under the rod, may let go his hold of God ; yet, 
that God, in his love and compassion towards his 
people, will hold him fast by his right hand, and will not 
leave him; but will guide him with his counsel, un- 
til he receive him into glory. This is God's method 
^ with his children; wherefore none from hence hath 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


cause to question God'& love, but rather to conclude 

2. Fears of the want of grace, on account of 
worldly prosp^ity. 

There are others (and it may be the same, when 
the tide of affection is turned) who, because they 
prosper, and are not in trouble as other men, con- 
ceive that God doth not love them. For it is said, 
^^ As many as he loveth, he doth rebuke and 
chasten," and he doth " chasten every son whom 
he receiveth." 

See, a fearful and doubtful heart will draw matter 
to feed its fears and doubts out of any thing. But 
know, God is a wise and good Father, he knoweth 
when to strike, and when to hold his hands. 

In such cases as tho following, God doth not 
usually afflict his children with his heavy rod: — ; 

1. When they be infants, babes in Christ, or (if 
they be grown to years) when they be spiritually 
weak or sick, and cannot bear correction ; then, 
though they be froward, and deserve strokes, God 
doth forbear^ and is inclined rather to pity. 

2. When they be good children; that is, when 
they show tliat tbey would please him, by endeavour* 
ing to do what they are able^ though it be with 
much imperfection; then God will not strike, but 
'^ spareth them^ as a father spar eth his only son, that 
serveth him." 

3. When forbearance of punishment, and when 
fruits and tokens of kindness will reclaim his chil- 
dren from evil, and prove sufficient incentives unto 
good ; God in this case also, like a wise and loving 
Father, had rather draw them by the cords of love, 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


than drive them with the lashes of his displeasure. 
Thus you see God may love his children, and not 
be always afflicting them. 

Well, do you prosper? Then take notice of 
God's goodness towards you with thanksgiving; 
study and endeavour therefore to he the more obe- 
dient. If you cannot, yet grieve because you can- 
not be more thankful and more obedient. Then, 
because prosperity hath made you to be better, or at 
least to desire to be better, hence you may assure 
yourselves, that your prosperity is not given you in 
wrath, but in love. But take heed; quarrel not 
with God, because he forbeareth to afflict you; either 
make this use, that you be good, and amend without 
blows; or else be sure the more is behind. 

3. Doubts of God's love, from inward horrois, 
and distresses of mind, removed. 

As the fore-mentioned persons questioned God's 
love, from considerations taken from their outward 
conditions; so there are very many, who, besides 
what they conclude from outward crosses, conclude 
also from their inward horrors and distresses of con- 
science, and from their intolerable perplexities of 
soul, that God doth not love them : they think that 
their distress is other, or greater than the affliction 
of any of God's children ; therefore they want peace, 
fearing that God doth not love them. 

Those to whom God doth bear special love, may 
be so far perplexed with inward and strange terrors 
and discomforts, that they may think themselves to 
be forsaken of God. Thus David complaineth : 
" Will the Lord cast off for ever? and will he be 
favourable no more?" Yea, not only David, but 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


Christ Jesus himself, and his church, did in their 
sense and feeling, take themselves to be forsaken of 
God ; yet none that are wise will say, that these- 
were destitute of God's love, or were ever quite for- 
saken, though never so much perplexed and cast 
down ; yet, in their own feeling and sense, in the 
agony of their spirits, they did thus think or speak. 
God hath most holy and blessed ends, in many 
times leading and leaving his children in such straits, 
that they are altogether without any sense of his 

1. It may be a just correction of them, for their 
not showing love to God, and because they do in 
part forsake him by their sins. This is therefore to 
humble them, and to make them know themselves, 
and to bring them to repentance. God may be 
pacified towards them in the main, yet for a time 
show them no countenance: as David, though hi3 
anger was appeased towards Absalom, yet for a time 
he would not let him see his love, for he would not 
let him come into his sight; that Absalom might be 
more humbled, and might the more detest his sin. 

2. God exerciseth his beloved ones with many 
fears, horrors, and doubts,' to prevent that spiritual 
pride which else would be in them, and that self- 
sufficiency which else they would conceive to be in 
themselves; if they should always have a sense of in-* 
ward and spiritual comforts, and should not some- 
time have pricks in the flesh, and buffetings of Satan, 
they would be exalted above measure, and would be 
something in themselves, in th^ir own opinion. But 
when there is such difficulty in getting and keeping 
of graqe and comfort, and when they find wh^t nee<) 

' Digitized by Google 


tfojr have of bbth^ mi how neither can be had but 
ftom God, m atid by Christy it will make them 
emfij diemselves of ail things in ibemeelves, thai 
tfaqr may be something in Chritft^ And then, when 
they have grace and obmfort, they will aekn6w}edge 
tfaemselyes to be beh^deii lo God for the isatne. 

3. God doth withhold froth Uaohildpen, the sense 
of his &voar te try the sincerity and truth of their 
sole dependence on him; trying, whether, because 
God aeemeth to forsake them, they will forsake him; 
whether, like king Joram, they will say, " Why 
shall they wait upon Qoi any longer ?^ and whether 
they will, with Saul, betake them to unlawful meana 
of help. Or whether, on the other side, they It^iil 
say, with Job and David, ** Though God kill ua, or 
finrget us, yet we will trust in him, hope in him, and 
praise him," who, they are persuaded, is, and will 
show himself to be, the health of their countenance, 
and their God. God useth to leave bis children, 
as, in another case, he left Hcfzekiah, to try them, 
and to know what is in their hearts. 

4. God withdraweth himself for a time, tbat they 
may learn to esteem more highly of hi^ favour, and 
to desire it more, when by the want of it, they find 
by experience, what a hell it is to be without it. 
And that they may be more thankful for it, and be 
more careful, by studying to please God, to keep it 
when they have it. This holy use, David and the 
church made of God's forsaking them (as they 
thought) for a time. It made^hem seek more dtli«* 
gently after God, {promising that if h^ would turn to 
them, they would not go back from him ; re8olving3 
ky hid grace^ to cleave more closely unto him.^ 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


. But know this to your comfort, when Groil dotfi 
most withdraw himself and forsake you, it is bnt in 
partf in appearance only, and but for a time; • He 
may, for the cause before mentioned, turn away bit 
face, and forbear to show his loving countenance; 
but be will not take his ^' loving- kindness utterly 
from jnou, nor suffer his faithfulness to fail." What 
God said to his afflicted church, he saith to every 
afflicted member thereof: '^ For a small moment 
have I forsaken tbce ; but with great mercies will I 
gather thee. In a little wrath have I hid my face 
from thee for a moment : but with everlasting kind- 
ness will I have mercy on thee, saith the Lord>thy 
Redeemer." Hence it is, that in your greatest ex- 
tremities, your faith and hope shall secretly, though 
you feel not their work, preserve you from utter des- 
pair. As it was with David, and with our blessed 
Saviour, who, although theso words of theirs to 
God, " Why hast thou forsaken me," argue fear, 
and want of sense of God'a love; yet these words, 
** My God, my God," doth argue a secret alliance 
^nd hope. 

4. Doubts of God's love on account of extraor- 
dinary afflictions, removed. 

And whereas you say, that no man's grief or 
troubles are like yours, partly by reason of outward 
afflictions, and partly by inward temptations and disf- 
tres8e», (give me leave to deal plainly with you) it 
is a foolish and a false speech. Talk with a 
thousand thus troubled, they will also say thu»: 
No man's case was ever as mine is, nor so bad. 
Will any that have but common sense, think this to 
be true? Most of these must needs be deceived. 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


You feel your own distresses, but you cannot fully 
know what another feeleth. 

If you would rightly look into the distresses of 
others, who were better than yourselves, as they are 
recorded in scripture, you would not think thus. 
As for outward afflictions, upon whom did God ever 
lay his hand more heavy than on his servant Job? 
Had not St. Paul also his trouble, without, of all 
sorts; and terrors within. And if you consider 
sorrows, fears, and distresses of ail sorts, were yours, 
such as David's were, or more than his? I pray, 
what mean these, and many more such speeches? 
" My bones are vexed; my soul is also sore vexed: 
but thou, O Lord, how long?— I am weary with my 
groaning. — Mine eye is consumed because of grief, 
it waxeth old.— -Why standest thou afar oflF, O 
Lord? Why hidest thou thyself in times of trouble? 
— How long wilt thou forget me, O Lord? for ever? 
How long wilt thou hide thy face from me?— I am 
poured out like water, ai)d all my bones are out of 
joint. My heart is like wax, it is melted in the midst 
of my bowels. My strength is dried up like a pot- 
sherd; and my tongue cleaveth to ray jaws, and thou 
hast brought me into the dust of death.*-— My bones 
waxed old, through my roaring all the day long, for 
day and night thy hand was heavy upon me.— -There 
is no soundness in my flesh because of thine anger; 
neither is there any rest in my bones because of my 
sin. For mine iniquities (that is, the punishment 
of mine iniquities) are gone over my head, they are 
too heavy for me." Thus, and much more, doth he 
complain: " I am weary of my crying: my throat is 
.dry: mine eyes fail while I wait for my God," So 

Digitized by CjOOQIC 


Asaph, ^^ My sore ran, and ceased not; my soul re* 
fused to be comforted." 

What think you now ? Were not Job, Paul, 
and David, in God's love and favour, notwithstanding 
all this? It may be, you will reply, Howe\'er the 
matter of their trouble might be greater than yours, 
yet they could remember God, they could pray to 
him, they had faith and confidence in God in their 
distresses, all which you want : therefore herein your 
case is worse than theirs. 

Consider yourselves well, (I speak only to you 
that are truly humbled for sin,) and it is to be hbped 
that, in some measure, you shall find the like grace, 
faith, and confidence in you, as was in them; if you 
see it not, be grieved for the want thereof, endea- 
vour to do as you see they did in their distresses, 
only be not discouraged, and all shall be well. But 
take notice, I pray you, that sometimes David nei- 
ther did, nor could pray, as he conceived of his own 
prayer, any otherwise than in roaring and complain- 
ing, at which time, he saith, he ^' kept silence.'' 
JBut when he could confess his sins and pray, then 
he had some apprehension that God had forgiven 
him his sin; and for all Asaph's remembering of 
God, yet even then he was troubled, and his spirit 
was overwhelmed, and he saith, *^ his soul refused 
comfort;" and David saith unto God, " When wilt 
thou comfort me." I grant it was his fault, yet it was 
such a fault as was incident to one beloved of God. 
IVioreover, I deny not that Job and David Irad faith 
and hope in God, but these graces in them were of- 
tentimes overclouded with unbelief and distrust, as 
doth appear in their various passionate exclamations. 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


at which timeB, their fiiith appeared: to others in their 
good speeches and actions, rather than to themselves. 
And the Psalmist cbnfesseth, that those his faithless 
complaints were in his haste, and from his infirmities* 

How say you now? Is it hot thus with you ? 
Are you not like others of God'a children, off and 
on; up and down? You would pray, and cannot; 
you would believe, but, as you think, cannot; you 
would have comfort, but cannot feel it. Only, you 
feel a secret support now and then; and now and 
then, you sec and feel a glimpse of God's light and 
comfort; for which you must be thankful, which you 
must cherish by all means, and with which you must 
rest contented, waiting until God give you more. 

You should knew and consider, that this is an old 
device of Satan, to make you believe that your case 
is worse, or at least much different &om the case of 
any others, because, ho knoweth, that while he fixeth 
this upon your mind, no common remedy, which did 
cure and comfort others, can cure and comfort you. 
For you will still ask. Was ever any as I am? 
And if God's ministers and people cannot say, yea, 
and that such an instruction, and such a promise, in 
the word, did help him, then you conclude that you 
are incurable. 

But last of all, let it be supposed that your case 
is worse than any body's else, is there not a sever* 
eign balm in God's word, a catholicon, or imiversal 
remedy, that will heal all spiritual diseases? God*s 
word is like himself, to a believer, an omnipotent 
word. " Is any thing too hard for the Lord?" 
Neither is there any spiritual disease too hard for 
his word aud Spirit .to cure. Wiiian-Chid^t^ healed 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


the people with his word, did it not heal even such 
who were never known to be cured before? 

They made no question, whether he cured the 
same before. Indeed, Martha &iled in this; for 
abesaid of her brother Lazarus, being dead, '^ Lord, 
he stinketh, for he bath been dead four days;" she 
conceived her brother's case to be desperate, and 
that none in his state could be restored to life. But 
Christ blamed her for want of faith; and, by his 
word, he as easily raised Lazarus from being dead 
BO long, as he cured Pet^r'a wife's mother, when only 
aick of a fever. 

It is not the greatness of any man's distress what- 
ever, that can hinder from help and comfort, but 
only, as then in curing men's bodies, so now in cur^ 
ing and comforting men's souls, nothing hinders the 
cure, but the greatness of unbelief in the party to 
be cured: for *^ all things are possible to him that 

You will yet reply. Indeed, here lieth the diffi- 
culty, in unbelief. 

Well be it so. If unbelief be your disease and 
trouble, do you tbink that God cannot cure you of 
unbelief, as well as of any other sin ? But know, 
that if, with the poor man in the gospel, you feel 
your unbelief, and complain of it, and confess it untp 
God, saying. Lord, I have cause to believe; Lord, 
I do, I would believe, ** help thou my unbelief;" if 
you also will wait until God give yeu power to be- 
lieve, and to enjoy comfort in believing, for faith 
roaketh no haste, this is both to believe in truth, 
and is a certain means to increase in believing. 
Wherefore, let not Satan, nor yet a fearful heart, 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


make you to judge your case to be desperate and 
remediless, either in respect of God's power or will, 
though you are yet in distress, and feel in you much 
fear and unbelief. Seek to God, and witli patience 
wait the good time of deliverance and comfort, and, 
in due time, you shall have help and comfort, as 
well as others. 

(5.) Doubts of God's love, because prayers are 
not answered, removed. 

There are yet some, that fear God doth not love 
them, because they have prayed often and much, 
but God hath rejected their prayers, and not an* 
swered them. 

There are many just causes, why God may reject, 
or at least not grant your prayers, ^nd yet may love 
your persons. 

For, first, it may be you ask amiss, either asking 
things unlawful, or asking things inconvenient for 
the present; or in asking to have good things, tem« 
poral or spiritual, in that quantity and degree which 
God doth not see fit for you as yet; or you ask good 
things to an ill end, as to satisfy some lust, as pride, 
voluptuousness, covetousness, &c. Or, lastly, though 
you failed in neither of the former, yet you failed in 
this, you were doubtful, you did not ask in faith, 
you did not believe you should have the things so 
asked; whosoever thus faileth in asking, let them 
not think to receive any thing in favour fiora the 
Lord. And it is a fruit of God's love, when he 
doth not answer prayers so made, for it will cause 
you to seek him and to pray to him in a better man- 
ner, that you may be heard. 
Secondly, God doth many times, in love and mercy, 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


hear his cblidren^i pr«yer8> when they think he 
doth not* God beareth prayers many ways; you 
mu^ observe thif» else you will judge that he doth 
not hear your prayers, when yet indeed he doth. 
jSometimesy yea always, when it is good for you, he 
gtvtth the very thing which you pray for. Some* 
times, he giveth not that thing which you ask, but 
something much better. As, when you ask earthly 
and temporal good things, he granteth them not, 
but instead thereof giveth you things spiritual and 
etemal; hkewise, when you ask grace in some 8|>e» 
oial d^ree, such as joy or comfort in God, or the 
like, it may please him not to let it appear that he 
giveth the same unto you, but, instead thereof, he 
doth enlarge your desires, and he giveth humility 
and patience to wait his leisure, which will do you 
ntore good than that which you prayed for. So, 
likewise, when you pray that God would free you 
from auch or such a temptation, God doth not always 
rid and ease you of it, but he, instead thereof^ giv^ 
eth you strength to withstand it, and keepeth you 
that you are not overcome by it; jthus, Christ ^' was 
heard in that he feared ;*' so he said to the apostle, 
^' My grace is suf&cient for thee;*' which is better 
than to have your particular request. For now 
God's power is seen in your weakness, and God 
liath the glory of it; and you hereby have eKperience 
of God's power, which experience is of excellent use. 
Likewise, you may desire to have auch or such 
a cross or affliction removed^ yet God may sufter 
the cross to remain for a time, but he giveth you 
strength and patience to bear it, wiadom and grace 
to be ksa earthly, and moct heavenly^minded by 
P 31 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


reason of it. There was never any, that, with an 
humble and holy heart, made lawful requests, ac- 
cording to the will of Christ, believing be should be 
heard, but, though he were a man of many fiiiiings 
in himseli^ and did discover many weaknesses in his 
prayer, was heard in that be prayed, ^either in what 
he asked of God, or in what he should rather have 
asked: either in the very thing or in a better. 

I would have you, therefore, leave objecting and 
questioning whether God loves you; consider this: 
Hath he not loved you, who hath given bis only 
begotten Son for you and to you; who hath washed 
you in his blood, having given him to die for your 
sins, and to rise again for your justification; and 
hath hereby ^^ translated you into the kingdom of 
his dear Son;" having, also, '^ given unto you to 
believe in his name;" hereby making you his chil- 
dren, ** inheritors with the saints in light." What 
greater sign can there be of the love of God towards 
you, and what better evidence can you have of God*s 
love in justifying you, than the evidence of your 
faith, whereby you are justified? 

(6.) A removal of false fears, from the deficiency 
or weakness of faith. 

All men will grant, that if they were sure they 
had faith, they should not doubt of their justifica- 
tion, nor of God's love to them in Christ. But 
many doubt that they have no faith, or if they have 
any, it is so little, that it cannot be sufficient to 
carry them through all oppositions to the end, unto 

If you have any faith, though no more than as a 
grain of mustard-seed, you should not fear your final 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


estate, nor jet doubt of God's love, for it is not the 
great quantity and measure of faith that saveth, but 
the excellent property and use of faith, though never 
so small. For a man is not saved by the worth of 
his faith, by which he believeth, but by the worth 
of Christ, the person on whom he believeth. Now, 
the least true faith doth apprehend Christ entirely, 
to all the purposes of salvation, even as a little hand 
may hold a jewel of infinite worth, as well, though 
not so strongly, as a larger. The least infant is as 
truly a man, as soon as ever it is endued with a 
reasonable soul, as afterward, when it is able to show 
forth the operations of it, though not so strong a 
man: even so it is in the state of regeneration. 
Now, you should consider that God hath babes in 
Christ, as well as old men; feeble-minded as well as 
strong; sick children, as well as healthy; in his fa- 
mily. And those that have least strength and are 
weakest, of whom the Holy Ghost saith, they have 
a ^^ little strength" in comparison, yet they have so 
much as, through God, will enable them in the time 
of greatest trials, to keep God's word, and that' they 
shall not deny Christ's name. Also, know that 
God, like a tender father, doth not cast off such as 
are little, feeble, and weak, but hath given special 
charge concerning the cherishing, supporting^ and 
comforting of these more than others. And Christ 
Jesus will confirm and increase, and not quench, 
the least spark of faith. 

This which I have said in commendation of little 
faith, is only to keep him, that hath no more, from 
despair. Let none hereby please or content K\«v- 
self witb bis little faith, not striving to gtoNv %xid< \.ci 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


be strong in faith. If be d6, it is to ht feared fbttt 
he hflth none at all) or if he have, ytt he mast know 
thftt he will have mneh t6 do to live^ when he hath 
no more than caii keep life and soul together^ and 
his life will be vety unprofitable and urteomfoftable^ 
in comparisoti of him that hath a MtOng faith. 

IX. Reasons tt% Christians think they have no 
Faith, considei'ed. 

But you will 8ay) (I.) you are so fuH of feari 
snd doubtings; (2.) you are so fearful to die^ and 
to hear of coming to jtidgment; and, (3.) you can* 
not feel that you have faith, you cannot feel joy 
and comfort in believing, therefore you fear you 
have no faith. 

I. If you, having so sure a word and promise^ 
do yet doubt and fear so much as you say^ it is your 
gr&at sin, and I must blame you now, in Our Sa«> 
viour's name, as ho did his disciples then, saying, 
" Why are ye fearful," why are ye doubtftil, ** O 
ye of little faith?" But, to yotir reformation and 
comfort, observe it, he doth not argue ihem to be 
of no faith, but only of little faith, sayings ^^ O ye 
of little faith.'^ Thus you see that some fears and 
doubtings do not argue no faith. 

II. Concerning fear of death and judgment, some 
fear doth not exclude all faith. Many, from their 
natural constitution, are more fearful of death than 
others. Yea, pure nature will startle and shrink to 
think of the sepdratidn of two so hear, so ancient) 
and such dear friends as the soul and body have 
l»^en. Good men^ such as David and H^rokiafa, 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


bav^ showed ih^it unwillingneits to die. And m^y, 
upon a mistake, conceiving the pange and pains of 
death, in the parting of the 80ul aud bodj, to be 
most torturoue and unsufierable, are afraid to die. 
Whereas to many, the nearer .they are to their eud, 
the less is their extremity of pain; and very many 
go away in a quiet awoon, without pain. 

And aa for being mov«d with some fear at the 
thought of the day of judgment, who can think of 
that great appearance before ao glorious a Majesty, 
such as Chriat shall appear in, to answer for all 
the things he hath done in his body without tremr 
Uing? The apostle calleth the thoughts thereof 
*^the terrors of the Lord.*' Indeed, to be per- 
plexed with the thoughts of tho one or the otlier, 
argueth imperfection of faith and hope, but not. an 
utter absenee of either. 

You have other and better things to do in this 
caae, than to make such dangerous conclusions, 
namely, that you have no faith upon such weak 
grounds. Yon should rather, wlien you £eel this 
over- fearfulness to die and to come to judgment, 
labour to find out the ground of your error, and 
atudy to endeavour to reform it. 

Unwillingness to die may proceed from these 
causes :*-*i- . 

1 . From too high an estimation o^ and too great 
a love to, eaithly things of some kind or other; which 
maketh you afraid and unwilling to part with them. 

2. You may be unwilling to die, because of igno- 
rance of the superabundant and inconceivable exceli* 
lenciesof the happinesa of saints departed, which if 
you knf w, you would be willing. 

Digitized byC:iOOQlC 


3. Fear of death and coining to judgment, doth, 
for the most part, rise from a conscience fearful of 
the sentence of condemnation, being without assur- 
ance, that when they die they shall go to heaven. 

Wherefore, if you would be free from trouble- 
some fear of death and judgment, learn, 

(1.) To think meanly and basely of the world, in 
comparison of those better things, provided for them 
that love God, and use all the things of the world 
accordingly, without setting your heart upon them, 
as if you used them not. (8.) While you live here 
on earth, take yourselves aside often, in your 
thoughts, from the cares and business of the world, 
and enter into heaven, and contemplate deeply the 
joys thereof. (3.) ^* Give all diligence to make 
your calling and election,'' and right to heaven, 
*^ sure" to yourselves: but let me give you this 
needful item, that you be willing and ready to judge 
it to be sure, when it is sure, and when you have 
cause so to judge. Let your care be only, through 
faith in Christ Jesus, to live well, joining unto faith 
virtue, 8cc. and you cannot but die well. Death at 
first appearance, like a serpent, seemeth terrible, but 
by faith, you may see this serpent's sting taken out, 
which when you consider, you may, for your re- 
freshment, receive it into your bosom. ** The sting 
of death is sin, the strength of sin is the law," . but 
the '* law of the Spirit of life in Christ, hath freed 
you from the law of sin and death." I confess, that 
when you see this pale horse, death, approaching, 
it may cause nature to shrink, but when you consider 
that his errand is to carry you with spefd to your 
desired home, to a state of glory, how can you but 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


desire he should remove you out of this vale of 
misery, that *^ mortality might be swallowed up of 

If you would do this in earnest, you would b^ so 
far from fearing death, that you would, if it were 
put to your choice, with, the apostle, choose to be 
dissolved, and to be with Christ, which is the best 
of all; and so far from fearing the day of judgment, 
that you would love and long for Christ's appearing, 
waitijj^g, with patience and cheerfulness, when your 
change sliall be. Endeavour to follow these direc- 
tions; then, if ""you cannot prevent those fears, and . 
conquer them as you would, yet be not discouraged, 
for fears and doubts of this kind flow, many times, 
from strength of temptations, rather than from weak- 
ness of faith. Moreover, what if you cannot attain 
to so high a pitch in your faith as St. Paul had, are 
you so ambitious that no other degrees of faith shall 
satisfy you? Or are you so foolish, as thence to 
conclude that you have no faith ? 

III. Whereas you say, you are without feeling, 
therefore you fear you have no faith. I acknow* 
ledge, that want of a feeling sense of God's favour, 
is that which doth more trouble God's tender- 
hearted children, and make them more doubt of 
God's love, and of their justification, than any thing 
else : whereas I know nothing that giveth them less 

(1.) In what true faith consists. 

For first. What do you mean by feeling ? If 
you mean the enjoyment of the things promised and 
hoped for, by inward sense, this is to overthrow the 
nature, and put an end to the use^ o( (a\\h andLV^y^^. 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


For '* faith is the substance <yf things hoped tor^ and 
the evidence of things not seen/* And the epostle 
saiti), " Hope that is seen, is not hope." Indeed, 
faith giveth a present being of the thing promised to 
the believer, but it is a being, not in sense^ but in 
hope and assured expectation of the thing promised: 
wherefore, the apostle, speakingof our spiritual con- 
versation on earth, saiih, ♦* We walk by faith, not 
by sight." These two, faith and feeling, are oppo- 
site one to the other in this sense, for when wc^hall 
live by sight and feeHng, then we shall cease to live 
by faith. 

(2.) The difference between faith and assurance. 

Secondly, If by feeling you mean a joyous and 
comfortable assurance that you are in God's favour, 
and that you shall be saved, and, therefore, because 
you want this joyous assurance, you think you have 
no faith, you must know this is a false conclusion. 
For faith, whereby you are saved and brought into 
a state of grace, and this comfortable assurance that 
you are in a state of grace and shall be saved, differ 
much from each other. It is true, assurance is an 
effect of faith. Yet it is not inseparable from the 
very being of faith at all times. For, you may have 
saving faith, yet, at sometimes, be without the com- 
fortable assurance of salvation. 

To believe in Christ to salvation is one thing, and 
to know assuredly that you shall be saved is another. 
For faith is a direct act of the reasonable soul, re- 
ceiving Christ, and salvation offered by God with 
him. Aasarance riseth from a reflex act of the soul, 
namely, when the soul, by self-inquiry, and the help 
of God's Spirit) can witness that it hath the aferv- 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


nMtnftiQned graee of faith, whereby it can saj,* I know 
that I belieTe in Christ Jesus; and I know that tiie 
fTooitseG of the gospel belong unio me. The holy 
scriptures are written for both these ends, that £rst 
&ith, «nd then assuraiKe of &ith and hope, shouM 
he wr/night in men. " These things are written,'* 
smth St. John in his gospel, ^ that you may believe 
that JesQs is the Christ, the Son of God, and that 
believitig you might have life through his name." 
Again, " These thiiigs liave I written," saith the 
same apostle in his Episdes, " to you who believe 
on the name of the Son of God, that ye may know 
that you have eternal Hfe, and tliat you may believe," 
tiiat is^ continue to bebeve, and increase in believing, 
*' on the flame of the Son of God." 

A man is sa^'ed by faith, but hath comfort in 

hope of salvKtton by assurance, so that the being of 

Bptritual life, in respect of us, doth subsist in faith, 

not in assurjMioe and feeling. And tluit is the 

strongest ^nd most approved faith, which cleaveth to 

Christ and to his promises, and resteth upon his 

truth and faithfulness, without the help of feeling. 

For, dthoiugh aBsurance givcth to us a more evi- 

-dent certainty «f JE)ur good estate, yet faith, even 

witbottt this, wiU certainly preserve us in this good 

estate, whether we be assured or not. Hence it is, 

Ibat although reason^ a6 it is now corrupt, will still 

:be objecting, and will be totisfied with nothing but 

what it may know by sense, yet faith, even above 

.and ag»nst aenMi, snd all natural reasoning, from a 

reverence to God's command, who btddetli to be- 

liete and trutft in ivim, and a pei^uasion of the truth 

and goodness of tbe promises^ w\\\ ^\^% ^cte^vX v^^ 


Digitized by CjOOQIC 


and rest upon, the bare, naked, divine witness of the 
word of God, for his sake that doth speak it. 

There is a certainty of evidence; namely, when the 
thing believed is not only said to be true and good, 
but a man. doth find it so to be by sense and ex- 
perience, and is so evident to man's reason, con- 
vincing it by force of argument, taken from the causes, 
efiects, properties, signs, and the like, that it hath 
nothing to object against the thing proposed to be 
believed. The certainty of adherence is the cer- 
tainty of faith. The certainty of evidence is the 
certainty of assurance. This certainty of assurance 
and evidence is of exeellent use, for it maketh the 
Christian fruitful iji good works, and doth fill him 
full of joy and comfort: therefore it must by all 
means be sought after, yet it is not of itself so strong, 
nor so constant, nor so infallible, as the certainty of 
faith and adherence is. For sense and reason since 
the fall, even in the regenerate, are weak, variable, 
and there conclusions are not so certain, ^s those of 
pure faith; because faith buildeth only upon divine 
testimony, concluding without reasoning or disputing, 
yea, many times against reasoning. So that, not- 
withstanding the excellent and needful use of assur- 
ance, it is faith and adherence to Christ and his 
promises, which, even in fears and doubts, must be the 
cabie we must hold by, lest we make shipwreck of all, 
when we are assaulted with our greatest temptations; . 
for then many times our assurance leaveth us to the 
mercy of the winds and seas, as mariners speak. If 
you have faith, though you have little or no feeling, 
your salvation is yet sure in truth, though not in 
[ your own apprehension. When both can be had it 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


347 . 

is best, for then you gain most strength and most 
comfort, giving you cheerfulness in ail your troubles; 
but the power and grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, 
and faith in his naked word and promise, is that to 
which you must trust. 

Sec this in the examples of most faithful men; for 
when they have been put to it, it was this that up-, 
held them, and in this was their faith commended. 
Abraham against all present sense and reason, even 
against hope, believed in hope, both in the matter of 
receiving a son, and in going about to offer him again 
unto God in sacrifice. He denied sense and reason, 
he considered not the unlikelihoods, and seeming 
impossibilities in the judgment of reason, that ever 
he should have ■& seed, he being old, and Sarah being 
old and barren ; or having a seed, that he shottMb^ 
saved by that seed, since he was to kill him in sacri- 
fice. He only considered the almighty power, faith- 
fulness, and sovereignty of him that had promised, he 
knew it was his duty to obey and wait, and so let 
all the matter concerning it rest on God's promise. 
For this his faith is commended, and he is said to be 
" strong in faith." 

Job and David, or Asaph, showed most strength of 
faith, when they had little or no feeling of God's 
favour, but rather the contrary. Job had little 
feeling of God's favour, when for pain of body he 
said, ^^ Wherefore do I take my flesh in my teeth," 
and in anguish of soul he said, ^* Wherefore hidest 
thou thy face, and takest me for thine enemy." Yet 
then this adherence of faith caused him to cleave unto 
God, and say in the same chapter, ^^ Though he slay 
me, yet will I trust in him." When David said 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


to God, ^' Why hast thou ibrgotten me ?' his aseur-^ 
ADce was weak ; yet even then his faith discov^ed 
itself, when he saith to his soul, ^^ Why art -thou 
disquieted within nre? Hope thou in God, who is 
the heahh of my countenance, and my God," Yon 
see then, thit the excellency of &ith lieth not in your 

, fueling, but, as the Psalmist speaketh by expetiesKe, 
in cleaving close unto the promise, and relying on 
God for it, upon his bare word. For he saith, ^ It 
is good for me to draw near 10 God, I have put my 

Hrust in the Lord God." Tliis was that which se- 
cretly upheld him, and kept him in possession, when 
his evidences and assurance were to seek« 

Wherefore^ Believe God's promises made to you 
in Clirist, and rest on him, even when you want joy^, 
and feeling comfort. For, having faith, you are 
•ure of heaven, though you be not 90 fully assured 
of it as you desire. It will be your greatest 00m- 
mendatioo, when you will be dutiful servants and 
diildren at God's commandment, though you have 
not present wages, when you will take God's word 
for that. Those are bad servants and cliildren, who 
cannot go on cheerfully in doing their maNter or 
father's will, except they may receive the proont&ed 

. wages, in good part, beforehand, or every day ; or 
except tfaoy may have a good part of the promised 

'inheri^a)ice piesently, and in hand. Feeling of co8)<* 
fort is part of a Christian's wages and inheritance, 
to be received ^l the good pleasure of God, that 
freely ^iveth it, rather than a Christian duty. To 
comfort and stay ourseli'cs on God in distress, is a 
duty, but this joyful sense and feeling of God's fia- 
•vour, is a gracious favour of God towards u$, net a 



doty of ourfi towards God. It argues too much 
distrust in God, and loo tnnch self-respect, when we 
have no heart to go about his work, except we be 
full of feeling of his favour. He is the best child 
or servant, that will obey out of love, duty, and eon- 
science; and will trust in God, and wait on him, for 
his wages and recompense. 

Thirdly, When you say you cannot feel that you 
have faith or hope, you mean, as indeed many good 
souls do, you cannot find and perceive, that these 
graces be in you in truth, which, if you did, yoii 
would not doubt of your salvation. My answer is, 
if fiiith and hope be in you, then if you would judi- 
ciously inquire into yourselves, and feel for them, 
you may find and feel them, and know that you have 
them; for, as certainly as he that seeth bodily, may 
know that he secth, so he that hath the spiritual 
sight of faith, may know that he hath faith. Where- 
fore, try and feel for your faith, and you shall find 
whether it be in you ; yea or no. 

(3.) The nature and properties of saving faith. 

For this oause, 1. Try whether you ever had 
the necessary preparatives, whkh ordinarily make 
way for the seed of faith to take root in tlie soul. 
2» Consider the nature of saving feith, and whether 
it i^dth wrought in you accordingly. 3. Consider 
some consequents and certain effects thereof. 

1. Concerning the preparatives to faith. Hath 
the law sliut you up, in your own apprehension, 
utKler the curse, so that you huve been afrafid of h^Wf 
And hath the Spirit also convinced you of sin by the 
gosipel, to the wounding of your conscience, and to 
the working of true humiliation, causing the heart 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


to relent) and to desire to know how to be saved? 
And if after this you have denied yourself, as to 
your own wisdom and will, power and goodness, and 
received and rested on Christ alone for salvation, 
according to. the nature of true faith, as followeth, 
then you have faith. 

If you doubt you were never su£Bciently humbled, 
then read Section X. of this Chapter. 

2. Consider rightly the nature and proper acts of 
faith, lest you conceive that to be faith which is not, 
and that to be no faith which is. You may know 
wherein true saving faith consists, by this which 
followeth: whereas, man being fallen into a state of 
condemnation by reason of sin, thereby breaking the 
covenant of works, it pleased God to ordain a new 
covenant, the covenant of grace, establishing it in his 
only Son, Christ Jesus, expressing the full tenor of 
this his covenant in the gospel, wherein he maketh 
a gracious and free offer of the Lord Jesus Christ, 
in whom this covenant is established, and with him 
the covenant itself, with all its unspeakable blessings, 
to man: now when a man, burdened with his sin, 
understanding this offer, giveth credit, and assenteth 
thereunto, because it is true ; and approveth it, and 
consenteth to it, both because it is good for him to 
embrace it, and because it is the will and command- 
ment of God, that he should consent for his part, 
and trust to it; when therefore a man receiveth 
Christ Jesus thus offered, together with the whole 
covenant, in all its duties and privileges, so far as he 
understandeth it; resolving to rest on that part of 
the covenant made and promised on God's part, and 
to stand to every branch of the covenant, to be per- 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


formed on his part; tlnis to embrace the covenant of 
grace, and to receive Christ, in whom it is confirmed, 
is to believe* 

This ofiPer of Christ, and the receiving him by 
faith, may clearly be expressed by an offer of peace 
and favour, made by a King unto a woman that is 
a rebellious subject; by making offer of a marriage 
between her and his only son, the heir apparent to 
the croWn, who, to make way to this match, under- 
takes, by his father's appointment, to make full satis- 
faction to his father's justice in her behalF, and to 
make her every way fit to be a daughter to a king. 
And for effecting this match between them, the son, 
with the consent and appointment of his father, 
sendeth his chief servants a wooing to this unworthy 
woman; making offer of marriaiic in their master's 
behalf, with the clearest proofs of their master's 
good-will to her, and with tlie greatest earnestness 
and entreaties that may be, to obtain her good-will. 
This woman at first, being a bond-woman unto this 
King's mortal enemy, and being in love with base 
slaves like herself, companions in her rebellion, she 
aptly sets light by this offer; or, if she consider well 
of it, she may doubt of the trutii of this offer, the 
match being so unequal and so unlikely on her part: 
knowing herself to be so base and unworthy, she 
may think the motion to be too good to be true; yet, 
i^ upon more advised thoughts, she doth take notice 
of the danger she is in while she standeth out against 
so powerful a King in her rebellion, and doth also 
see and believe, that the King's son is in earnest in 
his offer to reconcile her to his father, and that he 
would indeed match with her; thcrexi^oTv ^W ^^w- 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


itderetfa aho that it wtU be good iar her to fbrsdce 
all others, and take him^ and that esptdally beeause 
his person is so lovely, and every way worthy of her 
esteem. Now when she can bring herself Co believe 
this, and resolve thus, though she cometh to it with 
aome difficulty, yet if she give a true and hearty 
consent to have hixn, and to forsake all other, and to 
take him as he is, to obey him as her Lord, and to 
take part with him in all conditions better or worse; 
though she come to this resolution with much ado, 
then the match is as good as made between them; 
for hereupon follow the mutual embracing of, and 
interest in each other. 

The application is easy throughout: I will only 
apply so much as is for my purpose, to show the 
nature of justifying faith. 

God offers his only begotten Son, Jesus Christ; 
yea, Christ Jesus, by his ministers, offers himself in 
the gospel, unto rebellious man, to match with him; 
only on this condition, that forsaking his kindred 
and father's house, forsaking all that he is in himself, 
he will receive him as his head^ husband, Lord,^«ud 
Saviour. Now, when any man undeistandeth this 
motion, so far as to yield assent and consent to it, 
^d to receive Christ, and cleave to him, then be 
believeth to salvation; then the match is made 
between Christ and that man; then they are be^ 
trothed, nay married, and are no longer two, but are 
become one spirit. 

By all this you may see, that in saving faith there 
are tJiese two acts: 

1. An assent to the truth of the gospel, not only 
believing in general, that there is a Christy beliemg 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


klm i^hat m«ntier of person he is, and upon what 
c«itditlon he offered himsdf to mUn ae a Saviour; 
bdt also belioving that this Christ graciously offereth 
his love and himself to the Christian's self in parti'' 

2. A hearty approbation of this offi^r of Christ, 
with consenting and hearty embracing of it, as our 
own peculiar duty and privilege; resolving to take 
him wholly, and fully as he is; accepting of him 
according to the full tenor of the marriage covenant, 
not only as a man's Saviour, to defend him from evil, 
and to save him and bring him to glory; but as his 
head to be ruled by him, as his Lord and King, to 
worship and obey him; believing in him, not only as 
his priest to satisfy, and to make intercession for 
him, but also as his prophet to teach, and as his king 
to govern him; cleaving to him in all estates, taking 
part with him in all the evils that accompany the 
profession of Christ's name, as well as in the good. 

The first act is not enough to save any; the 
second act cannot be without the former: where both 
these are, there is a right receiving of the gospel, 
there is true faith. The principal matter licth in 
the consent and determination of the will in receiving 
Christ; which, that it may be without exception, 

1. It tnust be with an advised and considerate 
will; it most not be rash, and on a sudden, in your 
ignorance, before you well know what you do. You 
nifist be well advised, and consider well of the person 
to whtfm you give your consent, that you know him, 
and that you know the nature of this spiritual union, 
and what you are bound to by virtue of it, and what 
it will cost you, if you give yourself to Christ. , 

^ ^ J O / Digitized by Google 


2. Your consent must be with a determinate and 
complete will; with a present receiving him, even 
with all the heart« It must not be a faint consent, 
in an indifiPerency whether you consent or no; it must 
not be in a purpose, that you will receive him here- 
after; but you must give your hand and he%rt to him 
for the present, else, it is no match. 

3. Your consent must be with a free and ready 
will; it roust not be with a forced and constrained 
yielding, against the will; but (howsoever, it may be 
with much opposition and conflict, yet) you must so 
beat down the opposition, that when you give con- 
sent, you bring your will to do it readily and freely, 
with thankful acknowledging yourselves unspeakably 
obliged to the Lord Jesus Christ all the days of 
your life, that be vouchsafes to make you such an 
offer. When consent is rash, faint, and forced, 
this will not hold good any long time; but when 
your consent is advised, full, and free, out of true 
love to Christ, as well as for your own benefit; the 
knot of marriage between Christ and you is knit so 
fast, that all the lusts of the flesh, all the allurements 
of the world, and all the powers pf hell, shall not be 
able to break it. 

By this which hath been said concerning the 
nature of faith, many, who thought they had faith, 
may see that yet they have none. For they only 
believe in general that there is a Christ and a 
Saviour, who offereth grace and salvation to man- 
kind, and hereupon they presume. This general 
faith is needful, but that is not enough; it must be a 
persuasion of God's offer of Christ to a man in par- 
ticular, that the will in particular may be induced to 

Digitbed by VjOOQIC 


consent. There must likewise be that particular 
consent of will, and accepting of Christy upon such 
terms as he is offered. They that receive Christ 
aright enter into the marriage covenant, resolving 
to forsake all others, and obey him, and to take up 
his cross, and to endure all hardships with hiro, and 
for him, as shame, disgrace, poverty, hatred in the 
world, and all manner of reproach; this they consent 
to, and resolve upon for the present, and from this 
time forward^ for the whole tiibe of their life; which 
things many neither did, nor intended to do, when 
they gave their names to Christ: they only received 
him as their Jesus, one by whom they hoped to be 
saved and honoured, expecting that he should endow 
them with a fair jointure of heaven, but they did 
not receive him as their Lord. In doing thus, they 
erred in the essentials of marriage. For they erred 
in the person, taking an idol Christ, for the true 
Christ. They erred in the form of marriage; they 
took him not for the present, nor absolutely, for 
better for worse, as we say, in sickness and health, 
in good report and ill report, in persecution and in 
peace, forsaking all other, never to part, no not at 
death. Wherefore Christ doti) not own those 
foolish virgins, when they would enter the bride- 
chamber, but saith, ^^ I know you not," because 
there was no true consent on their part, they had no 
faith; and their contract or marriage with Christ was 
only in speech, but was never legal, or consummated. 
By this which hath been said, others who have 
faith indeed, may know they have it, namely, if they 
so believe the covenant of grace established in Christ, 
that with all their hearts they accept of him and it, 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


to UmI tliej iBiQtreljr fktire tad putpate to $Uik1 to 
it on ibeir part% as ihojr are able, and rest on it so 
fiur as it ooocerna Christ to fulfll it. For this is faith. 

To this» some fearfiil souk wiH reply; If we have 
DO fiuth, except to an assent to the tmth, we do also 
reeeive Christ oflpered, with a deliberate^ entire, and 
free consent, to rest on hifls, to be roled bj him, and 
to take part with biai in all conditions; then we 
donbt that we have no faith, because we so hardly 
brought ourselves to consent, and find ourselves so 
wesk in our consent, and have been so un&ithful in 
keeping promise with Christ* 

Truth, fulness and firmness of consent of the will 
to reeeive Christ may stand with many donbtings, 
and with much weakness and sense of diflkulty, in 
bringing the heart to consent* For so long as there 
is a Isw in your members warring agsinst the law of 
your mind, you can never do as you would. If you 
can bring your hearts to will, to consent and obey, in 
spite of all oppositions, this arguech liearty and full 
consent, and a true faith. Nay, if yon can bring 
the heart but to desire to receive Christ, and to enter 
into covenant with God, made mutually between 
God and you in Christ, and that it may stand accord* 
ing to the oflPer which be raaketh unto you in his 
word, even this arguetli a true and firm consent, and 
maketh up the match between Christ and you« 
Even as when Jacob related the particulars pf an 
earthly covenant, into which he would have Laban 
enter with, him, Lahaa's saying, *^ I would it might 
be according to thy word," gave proof of his consent, 
and did ratify the covenant between them. If you 
can there&re, when Grod ofiers to yon the covensnt 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


of grace^ commanding you to receive Christy in whom 
it is established, and to enter into this covenant; if 
(I tay) you can with all your hearty say to God, ^* I 
irould it might be according to thy word;" the 
tfov^nant is mutually entered intoy and the match is 
Blade between Christ and you. 

And whereas it doth trouble you^ ttiat you (ianaot 
be so faithful to Clirist, as yciur coveuant doth bind 
you, it is well you are troubled, if yO'U did not alto 
make it an argument that you have no faith; for in 
that it heartily grieveth you^ that you cannot believe, 
tior perform all faithfulness to Christy it is an evident 
sign that you liave faith* You must hot think that 
after you are truly married to Christy you shall be 
free from evil solicitations by your old lovers; nayi 
sometimes a kind of violence may be olfered^ by 
tpirituni wickednesses, to you, so that you are forced 
to many evils against your will: as it may befai a 
faithful \vife, to be forced by one stronger than she; 
yet if you give not full consent to them, and suffer 
not your heart to follow them, your husband Christ 
will not impute these forced evils to you. Yet, let 
none by this take liberty to offend Chtist in the least 
thing, for though Christ love you Inore tenderly and 
more mercifully than any husband can love liis wife, 
yet know, he doth not dote on you; he can isee the 
smallest faults, and will sharply, though kindly, re- 
buke and correct you for them, if you do them pre- 
sumptuously. But he esteemeth none to break 
spiritual wedlock, so as to' dissolve marriagCi but 
those whose hearts are wholly departed from him, 
and are set upon^ and given to spmeUitng else. If 
you thus look into the nature of £iith (I lymk to a 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


soul troubled for sin) you may know and feel that 
you have it. 

(4.) True faith may be discerned by its effects. 

You may know a lively faith likewise, by most 
certain consequences and effects, I mean not comfort 
and joy, which are sometimes felt, and sometimes 
not; hut by such effects, which are most constant, 
and more certain, and may be no less felt than joy 
and comfort, if you would search for them; amongst 
others, I reckon these: 

1 . You may know you have faith J)y your grieving 
for, and opposing of the contraiy ; if you feel a fight 
and conflict between believing and doubting, fear 
and distrust; and in that combat you take part with 
believing, hope, and confidence, or at least desire 
heartily that these should prevail, and are grieved at 
heart, when the other gets, the better: if you feel 
this, do not say, you have no feeling. Do not say, 
you have no faith. This conflict, and desire to 
have faith, gave proof, that the man in the gospel, 
who came to Christ to cure his child, had faith; 
" I believe Lord," saith he; " Lord help mine un- 
belief." Do not say (as I have heard many) This 
man could say, I believe; but we cannot say so. 
I tell you, if you can heartily say. Lord, help my 
unbelief, I am sure, any of you may say, I believe. 
For, whence is this sense of unbelief, and desire to 
believe, but from faith? 

2. You may know you have faith (I speak still 
to an afilicted soul, which dare not sin wilfully) 
inasmuch as you will not part with that faith which 
you have upon any terms. I will ask you, who 
have given hope to others, that you do believe, and 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 



that ye doubt you have not truth of faith atid hope 
in God, only these questions, and ^s your heart ean 
answer them, so you may judge. Will you part 
with that faith and hope which you call none, for 
any price? Would you change present states with 
those who presume they have a strong faith, whose 
consciences do not trouble them, but are at quiet, 
though they live in all manner of wickedness? or at 
best are merely civilly honest? Nay, would you, 
if it were possible, forego all that faith, and *hope, 
and other graces of the Spirit, which you call none 
at all, and return to that former state, wherein you 
were in the days of your vanity, before you en- 
deavoured to leave sin, and to seek the mercy of 
God in Christ Jesus in good earnest? Would you 
lay any other foundation to build upon, than what 
you have already laid? Or is there any person or 
thing, whereon you desire to rest for salvation and 
direction, besides Christ Jesus? If you can answer, 
No; but can say, with Peter, ** To whom should we 
go? Christ only hath the words of eternal life:" you 
know no other foundation to lay, than what you have 
laid, and have willed^ and desired to lay it right; 
you resolve never to pull down what you have built, 
though it be but a little; and it is your grief that 
you build no faster upon it. By this answer you 
may see, that yoilf dbnscienee, before you are aware, 
doth, witness for you, and will make you confess that 
you have some true faith and hope in God, or at 
least hope that you have. For, let men say what 
they will to the contrary, " they always think they 
have those things, which by no means they can be 
brought to part* with." 

Digitized byC:iOOQlC 


' 3. If yoa would have sensible proof of your faith 
and justification; look for it in the most certain 
effect, which is in your sanctification* Do you feet 
yourselves loaded and burdened with sin; and your 
hearts distressed with sorrow for it? And do you 
also perceive yourselves to be altered from what you 
were? Do you now bear good- will to God's word 
and ordinonces? And do you desire the pure word 
of God, that you may grow in grace by it? Do 
you love and consort with God's people, because 
you think they fear God? Is it your desire to 
approve yourselves to God, in holy obedience? 
And is it your trouble, that you cannot do It? Then 
certainly you iiave faith, you have an effectual faith. 
For what are all these but the very pulse^ breath, 
and motions of faith? If you feel grace to be in 
you, it IS a better feelings than feeling of comfort; 
for grace, in men of understanding, is never separ- 
ated from effectual fidth, but comfort many times is; 
for that may rise from presumption and false faith. 
Grace, only from the Spirit of God, and from true 

X. Fears concerning the truth of Sanctification 

It is granted by all, that if they arc truly sancti- 
fied, then they know that they have faith, and are 
justified; but many fear they are not sanctified, and 
that for these seeming reasons: 

I. Fears of not being sanctified for want of deep 
humiliation, answered. 

Some fear they are not sanctified, because they 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


do. not remember, that ever they felt those wounds 
and terrors of conscience, which are first wrought in 
men to make way to conversion; as it was in them 
who were pricked to the heart at Peter's sermon; 
and in St. Paul; and in the jailor. Or if they felt 
any. terrors, they fear they were but certain flashes, 
and forerunners of helHsh torments; like those of 
Cain and Judas. 

As it is in the natural birth, with the mother, so 
it is in the spiritual birth with the child. There is 
no birth without some travail and pain, but not all 
alike. Thus it is in the new birth with all that are 
come to years of discretion. Some have so much 
grief, fear, and horror, that it is intolerable, and 
leaveth so deep an impression, that it can never be 
forgotten; others have some true sense of grief ;md 
fear, but nothing to the former in comparison, which 
may easily be forgotten. 

There are causes, why some feel more grief and 
fear in their first conversion than others: 

1. Some have committed more gross and heinous 
sins than others; therefore, they have more cause 
and need to have more terror and humiliation than 

2. God doth set some apart for greater employ- 
ments than others, such as will require a man of 
great trust and experience; wherefore God, to pre- 
pare them, doth exercise such with the greatest trials, 
for their deep humiliation, and for their more speedy 
and full reformation, that all necessary graces might 
be more deeply and firmly rooted in them. 

3. Some have been religiously brought up trem 
their infancy, whereby, as they were kei^l (\oia ^5>«^ 

Q ^\ 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


sins ; so their sins were subdued by little and little, 
without any sensible impression of horror; graces and 
comfort being instilled into them: almost insensibly. 

4. Some by natural constitution and temper of 
body, are more fearful, and more sensible of anguish 
than others, which may cause that although they 
may be alike wounded in conscience for sin, yet they 
may not feel it all alike. 

5. There may be the like fear and terror wrought 
in the conscience, of sin, in one as well as another ; 
yet it may not leave the like lasting sense and im- 
pression in the memory of the one, as in the other. 
Because God may show himself gracious in discov- 
ering a remedy, and giving comfort to one, sooner 
than the other. As two men may be in peril of 
their lives by enemies ; the one, as soon as he seeth 
his danger, seeth an impregnable castle to step into, 
or an army of friends to rescue him ; this man's fear 
is quickly over and forgotten : the other doth not 
only see great danger, but is surprised by bis ene- 
mies, is taken and carried captive, and is a long 
time in cruel bondage and fear of his life, till at 
length he is redeemed out of their hand. Such a 
fea^r as this can never be forgotten. 

You may evidently know, whether you had suf- 
ficient grief and fear in your first conversion, by 
these signs. Had you ever such, and so much 
grief for sin, that it made you to dislike sin^ and 
to dislike yourself for it, and to be weary and 
heavy laden with it ; so as to make you heartily 
confess your sins to God, and to ask of him mercy 
and forgiveness ? Hath it made you to look better 
tp your ways, and more earful to please GimI? 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


Then be sure, it was a competent and sufficient 
grief; because it was- a *^ godly sorrow* to repent** 
ance, never to be repented of»" 

' Again, Are you <now grieved and troubled, when 
you &11 into particular sins ? Then you may be 
eertain, that there was a time when you were suffi- 
ciently humbled in your conversion ; for this latter 
grief is but putting that grief into farther act, 
whereof you received a habit in your first conver- 
sion. If you dan for the present find any proof of 
eonversiony it should not trouble you, though you 
know not when, or by whom, or how you were 
converted; any more than thus, that you know 
God hath wrought it by his word and Spirit. 
When any field bringeth forth a crop of good corn, 
this proveth that it was sufficiently ploughed ; for 
God doth never sow, until the fallow ground of 
men's hearts is sufficiently broken up. 

> Now, as for those who remember that they have 
bad terrors of conscience, and, it may be, ever and 
anon feel them still, who fear that these were not 
beginnings of conversion, but ratlier beginnings of 
desperations and hellish torments,<~-»you should 
know, that there is a great difference between these 
and those. 

' 1. Those fears and horrors, which are only 

flashes and beginnings of hellish torments, are 

wrought only by the law and spirit of bondage, 

giving not so much as a secret hope of salvation. 

But those fears^ which make way unto, and which 

are the beginnings of conversion, are indeed first 

wtrought by the law ^so, yet not only, for the gos- 

pri bath, at least, some share with tliemi partly to 


Digitized by VjOOQIC 


melt the heart, broken by the law, partly to sup- 
port the heart, causing it, by some little glimpse of 
light, to entertain a possibility of mercy. Com* 
pare the terrors of Cain and Judas, with those of 
the men pricked at Peter's sermon, with St. Paul's 
and the jailor's, and you shall see both this and the 
following differences. 

2. The former terrors and troubles are caused, 
either only from fear of hell, and the fierce wrath 
of God, but not from sin; or, if at all from sin, it is 
only in respect of the punishments These tending 
to conversion, are also caused through fear of hdl, 
but not only : the heart of one thus troubled, is 
grieved because of his sin ; and that not only be- 
cause it descrveth hell, but because by it he hath 
offended and dishonoured God. 

3. Those who are troubled in the first sort con- 
tinue headstrong and obstinate, retaining their usual 
hatred against God, and against such as fear God, 
as also their love to wickedness : only, it may be, 
they may conceal and smother their rancour, through 
the spirit of restraint, that for the time it doth 
not appear : but in the other will appear some al- 
teration towards goodness ; as, whatsoever their 
opinions and speeches were of God's people before, 
now they begin to think better of them, and of 
their ways. So did they in the Acts: before they 
were pricked at heart, they did scoff at the Apos- 
tles, and derided God's gifts in them ; but after- 
wards said, " Men and brethren ;" they thought 
reverently of them, and spake reverently to them. 
See the same in Paul, in his readiness to do what- 
soever Christ should enjoin him. The jailor also, 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


in this case, quickly became well affected to Paul 
and Slas* 

4. The former sort, when they are troubled with 
horrqr of conscience, fly from God, and seek no re- 
medy, but such as is worldly and carnal ; as com- 
pany-keeping, music, and other earthly delights, as 
in building, and in* their lands and livings, accor- 
ding as their own corrupt hearts and their vain com- 
panions advise them ; whereby sometimes they stu- 
pify and deaden their conscience, and lay it asleep 
for a time* Thus Cain aud Saul allayed their dis- 
tempered spirits. And if they had some godly 
friends, who shall bring them to God's ministers, or 
do themselves minister to them the instructions of 
the word, this is tedious and irksome to them, they 
cannot relish these means, nor take any satisfaction 
in them. But the other are willing to seek to 
God, by seeking to his ministers, to whom God 
hath given the tongue of the learned, to minister a 
word in season, to the soul that is weary ; and, 
though* they cannot presently receive comfort, will 
not utterly reject them, except in case of melancholy, 
which must not be imputed to them, but to their 

And in application of the remedy, as there were 
two parts of the grief, so they must find remedies 
for both, or they cannot be fully satisfied. 1. 
They were filled with grief for fear of hell ; for 
the removing of which, the blood of Christ is ap- 
plied, together with God's promise of forgiveness 
to him that beheveth, and a commandment to be- 
lieve : all this is appHed to take away the guilt and 
punishment of sin. 2. They were ixwaXA^^ ^^^ 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


sin, whereby they dishonoured and displeased Godi 
now, unless they also feel in some measure the 
grace of Christ's Spirit healing the wound of. sin^ 
and subduing, the power of it^ and enabling tbem^ 
at least, to will and strive to please God, they canr 
not be satisfied. As it was with David, though 
God had said by the prophet, ^^ The Lord bath put 
away thy sin,'' that is, forgiven it; yet he had no 
comfort until God had ^^ created in him a clean heart, 
and renewed a right spirit within him." Whereas^ 
if fear of hell be removed, it is all that the former 
sort care for. 

5« As for the first sort, it may be, while they 
were afraid to be damned, they had some restraint of 
sin, and, it may be, made some essays towards reform 
mation ; Jbut when their terrors are over and forgot- 
ten, then, like the dog, they return to their vomit, 
and like the sow that was washed, to their wallowing 
in the mire of their wonted ungodliness. But as 
for those, whose terrors were preparations to conver- 
sion, when they obtain peace of conscience, they are 
exceedingly thankful for it, and are made by it more 
fearful to offend. And although they may, and 
often do fall into some particular sin or sins, for 
which they renew their grief and repentance; yet 
they do not fall into an allowed course, of sin any 
more. Thus much in answer to the first doubt of 
sanctification. >. 

II. Fears of not being sanctified from the intru* . 
sion of many evil thoughts. 

There are many who doubt they are not sancti* 
fied, because of 4,hose swarms of evil thoughts which 
are in them ; some whereof (which is fearful for 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


tbem to tbink or speak) are blatphemoas, unnatural, 
and inhuman; calling God's being, truth, power, 
and providence into question; doubting whether the 
scripture be the word of God, and others of this 
nature, having also thoughts of laying violent hands 
upon themselves and others, with many more of that 
and other kinds of evil and blasphemous thoirghts, 
such as they never felt at all, or not so much, in 
their known state of unregeneracy, before they made 
a more strict profession of godliness; and such as, 
they think, none that are truly sanctified are trou^ 
bled with. 

To resolve this doubt, know, that evil thoughts 
are either put into men from without, as when Satan 
doth suggest, or wicked men do solicit evil; thus 
Job's wife, <^ Curse God, and die:" or they rise from 
within, out of the evil concupiscence of man's own 
heart ; and sometimes they are mixed, coming both 
from within and without. 

Those which come only from Satan, may usually 
be known from those that arise out of man's heart, 
by their suddenness and incessantness ; namely, 
when they are repelled they will sometimes return 
again a hundred times in a day. Also they are un- 
reasonable and unnatural ; strange and violent in their 
motions; receiving no check, but by violent resis- 
tance. Whereas, those which altogether, or in 
great part, are from man's own corrupt heart; they 
usually arise by occasion of some external object, or 
from some natural cause, and are not so sudden and 
incessant, nor so unnatural and violent. Now all 
those evil thoughts (or thoughts of evil rather^) 
which are fropi Satan; if you consent i\o\. xxtiXo \)tv^\s^ 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


but abhor and resist them with detestation, they are 
not your sins, but Satan's, and theirs that put them 
into you. They are your crosses, because they are 
matter of trouble to you, but they are not your sins, 
because they leave no guilt upon you. They are 
no more your sins than these thoughts, *' Cast thy* 
self down* headlong," and " fall down and worship 
me," namely, the devil, were Christ's sins — ^if you 
consent not, but resist ihem, as Christ did. 

You should carefully observe this. For if the 
devil was so malicious and presumptuous, as to assault 
our blessed Saviour with such devilish temptations, 
injecting into him such vile and blasphemous notions 
and thoughts; should you think it strange that he 
doth perplex you with the like? And for all this, 
you have no cause to doubt, whether Christ were 
the Son of God or no, though the devil made an if 
of it, and it was the thing the devil aimed at; why 
then should it be doubted that any of Christ's mem- 
bers may be thus assaulted? And yet surely ihey 
have no cause for this to question, whether they be 
sanctified, or in a state of grace. For these vain 
thoughts in them are so far from being abominable 
evils, that, being not consented to, they are, as I 
said, not their sins. 

It is a piece of the devil's cunning, first to fill a 
man full of abominable thoughts, and then to be the 
first that shall put in this accusation and doubt, 
namely. Is it possible for any child of God, that is 
sanctified with God's Holy Spirit, to have such 
thoughts? But consider well, that an innocent 
Benjamin may have Joseph's cup put into his sack's 
mouth, without his knowledge or consent, by him, 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


wjio, for his own ends, intended thereby to accuse 
Benjamin of theft and ingratitude. Was Benjamin 
any thing th^more dishonest or ungrateful for this? 
No! Satan doth not want malice or cunning in this 
kind to play his feats. Where he cannot corrupt 
men, yet there he will vex and perplex them. 

But let it be granted, that these blasphemous 
and abominable thoughts, which trouble you, are 
indeed your sins, either because they arise from 
your own evil heart, or because you did consent to 
them. If so, then you have much cause to grieve 
and repent, but not to despair, or to say you are 
not God's child; for it is possible for a sanctified 
man to be made guilty, either by outward act, or by 
consent and approbation, or by some means or other, 
of any one sin, except that against the Holy Ghost; 
and yet if he cotifess and bewail his sin, and repent, 
believe, and ask mercy, it shall be forgiven him; for 
he hath our Saviour's word for it. 

And whereas you say you were not troubled with 
such abominable thoughts before you made profes- 
sion of a holy life; I answer, this is not to be won- 
dered at. For, before that time, the devil and you 
were friends, then he thought it enough to suffer 
you to be proud of your civil honesty, or, it may be, 
to content yourself with a mere form of godliness, 
because that you were free from notorious crimes, as 
adultery, lying, swearing, &c. For when he could 
by these more plausible ways lead you captive at his 
will, he saw you were bis sure enough already; 
what need was there then, that he should solicit you 
any farther, or disturb your quiet? But now, that 
you have renounced him in earnest^ aud xVvaX Vi^ ^w\ 

Digitized by VjOOQ {£ 


you are opposites ; you may- be sure, tliat .^e wiK 
attempt by all means to reduce you into your old 
state: or if he fail of that, yet, aa long as you Yiye^ 
so far as God shidl pennit, he will do what be ean 
to disturb your peace, by vexing and molesting y4Ni« 
Moreover, God doth permit this, for divers holy 

1. To discover the devil's malice. • . 

2. To chasten his children,- and to humble thera^ 
because they were too well conceited of the goodness 
of their nature in their unregeneracy, or might be 
too uncharitable and censorious of others; and too 
presumptuous of their own strength, since they were 
regenerate. . • 

3. God likewise permitteth these buffettings and 
winnowings of Satan, to prevent pride, and other 
sins, so to exercise and try tjhe graces of iiis children^ 
to give them experience of their own weakness, and 
of his grace towards them, and strength in them, 
even in their weakness; preserving them from being 
vanquished, although they fight with pruicipalities 
and powers, and spiritual wickedness. For God's 
strength is made perfect in man's weakness. 

Remedies against, evil and blasphemous thoughts. 

That Christians who. are troubled with bla^phe^ 
-roous, and other abominable thoughts, may be^less 
troubled, or at least not hurt by them, follow these 
directions :.^^ ■ < .. . .. \^ . 

I. Proofs of. th e being »of God. < ^ . . . . r, . , v 

Firsts Afm youEself with evidentfnroofs that theise 
is a Gody that there is a divihe,< apiritual, . absolutely 
and independent: Being, from jrfiom,i.a|id,ti>..wh(un 
are all things, and by whom all things consist.— -« 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


Next^ confirm, yourself ia a sure pei^^piision that tha 
Bible and Holy Scriptures are the pure word of this 
only true God.-r-^Then labour wjth your hearty. tha\ 
it ^G reverence and love God and his will) as to be 
always ready to rise against every motion to sin, 
(especially these of the worse kind^) with loathing and 

1. To be assured that there is a Gpd, consider 
first the creation, preservation, and order of the crea^ 
tures. How could it be possible that such a worl4 
'Gould be. made and upheld, or that there should be 
such an order, or subordination among creatures, if 
there were not a God ? The heavens, give their in- 
fluence into the air, water, and. earth; these, by 
virtue hereof,. afford means of comfort apd support to 
all living creatures. The creatures without sens^ 
aerve for the use of the sensitive; and all serve for 
the use of man; who, although he be an excellent 
creature, yet of himself he is so impotent, that he 
cannot add oi>e cubit to his stature ; nay, he cannot 
make one hair white or black, therefore could not be 
the maker of these things. 

Moreover, if the creatures were not limited and 
ordered by a superior Being, they would one devour 
another, in such a manner as to bring all to confu- 
.Uion. -For the savage beasts would eat up and dc^- 
stroy all the tame and gentle, the strong would con- 
sume the weak; the sea,Jf it had not bounds set to 
its proud waves, would stand aboy^ the mountains; 
and tha devil, who hatetb mankind, would not suijter 
a man to live at any quiet, if there were not .a God, 
pne stronger than the stroi^est^ creatures, to re- 
strain Satan, and to confine every thing to its place 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


and order. How could there be a continual vicis- 
situde of things? How could we have rain and fruit- 
ful seasons, and our souls be fed with food and glad- 
ness, if there were no God? Thus by the creation, the 
" invisible things of God," that is, " bis eternal power 
and Godhead," are clearly seen; for by these things, 
which are thus made, and thus preserved, he h^th 
not left himself without witness, that God is, and 
that he ^^ made all things for himself," even for his 
own glory. 

2. If all things came by nature, and not from a 
God of nature, how then have miracles, which are . 
many times against nature, and do always transcend 
and exceed the order and power of nature, been 
wrought? For nature in itself doth always work 
even in its greatest works, in one and the same 
manner and order. For nature is nothing else but 
the power of God in the creatures, to support them, 
and to produce their effects in due order. Where- 
fore, if any thing be from nature, or from miracle, it 
is from God i the one from his power in things or- 
dinary, the other from hie power in things extraor- 
dinary ; wherefore, whether you look on things na- 
tural, or above nature, you may see there is a God. 

3. Look into the admirable workmanship of but 
one of the creatures, namely, your own soul, and 
particularly into your consoi.ence c whence are your 
fears that you shall be damned? What need it; 
nay, how could it trouble you, for your blasphemous 
thoughts and other sins, if it were not privy to it- 
self, that there is a God, who will bring every 
thought into judgment? 

4* Mak^ use pf the eye of faxthf whereby you 

Digitized by CjOOQ IC 


may tee. God, who is invisible, and that more dis- 
tinctly,' more certainly, and more fully. .Remember 
that it is the first prindple of all religion, which is 
first to be learned, namely, That God is, that ail 
things are made by him, and that '^ he is a rewarder 
of all those," who so believe this that they ^* dili- 
gently seek him." 

II. Proof of the Divinity of the Scriptures. 

1. That you may assure yourselves, that the 
Scriptures are the word of God ; consider, first, 
how infallibly true they relate things past, according 
as they were many hundred years before; also in 
foretelling things to come many hundred of years 
after, which you may see to have come to pass, and 
daily do come to pass accordingly : which they would 
not do if they were not God's word. 

2. They lay open the particular and mpst secret 
, thoughts and affections of man's heart, which they 

could not do, if they were not the word of him that 
knoweth all things; in whose sight all things are 
naked and open. ^ 

3. They command all duties of piety, sobriety, 
and equity, and do prohibit all vice, in such a manner 
as all the writings and laws of all men laid together, 
neither do, nor can do. 

4. As the scriptures discover a state of eternal 
damnation unto man, and condemn him to it for sin ; 
so they reveal a sure way of salvation ; which is such 
a way as could never enter into the imagination and 
heart of any man, or of all men together, without 

. the word and revelation of the Spirit of God, who 
in his wisdom found out, and ordained this way. 

5. The scriptures are a word of ^ ONvex^ ^Xmv^v^ 

Digitized byVjOOQlC 


beyond the power of any crealnrei ^^SpuUing doym^ 
stretig^holds; c[a&titig down ImaginBtions^ and everyf 
high thing that exalteth itaejf again»t the knowled^ 
of God, and bringeth into captivity every thought 
to the obedience of Christ.*- - » . ., , 

6. The scriptures have a universal consent with 
themselves, though penned by divers men; whicl^ 
proveth that- they are not of any* private interpreta- 
tion ; but • that these *^ holy men of God spakie as 
they were moved by the Holy Ghost." Much 
more might be said to this point, but thi$ may suf- 
fice. . ^ M . . 

Helps against unnatural and violent" suggestions. 

Against temptations to offer violent hands upon 
yourself and others, you must have these or the like 
scriptures in readiness: *^ Thou shalt not kill;" and 
** See thou do thyself no harnj;" and such. like. 
And that you may be prepared against all other vile 
temptations, possess your heart beforehand with this, 
that these are great wickednesses against God, 
against your God. When Joseph could say, " Shall 
I commit this > great wickedness and sin against 
God," no temptations could prevail against him. 
Thus much for forearming yourselves against blas- 
phemous and vile thoughts and temptations. 

In the second 'filace-'^vfhGiA ypu are thus armed, 
whensoever these blasphemous and fearful thoughls 
rise in you, ot are forced upon you, take heed of two 
extremes: ^ . -.. 2 - .. * . .* j. 

1. Do not contemn theni) so afr> to set light by 
them ; lor this giveth strength to sin, and advantage 
to Satan. <• ».....*.,. ,,. - .,.w ^ »;^ , v- ;» 

2. Be not discouraged nor yet faint through de- 

Digitized by CjOOQIC 


fifuiir. of being^fre^^ frOiq ttbeni^^iin.djiie tin^e;: or p/ 
wkhstanding^thero in tbet.me^n time*. For tbeii 
Saiafihath jbk eiid,>and hU.will.of your .; BY;it.c^|ry 
yourself in 8 middle course ; pore pot top much po 
them> dispute not too much with tbem; presume jipt 
oi'youpowD strength ;. but, by liftjng.up pf your I^earj^ 
in. .prayer, call in GodV aid to resist and with6t^i^4 
tbem: present some suil;ablQ c^pripture tp youi;^ mij>.4) 
such as is directed against them, . whereby you may, 
with a holy detestation, resist them, according tp 
Christ's. example, with, " It is ij^ritteiw" ..Now, 
when you have done this, then, if it be possible, 
think on them no more. 

3. Endeavour, at all times, to make consciepce in 
the whole course of your life . pf your , tho.ughts, even 
of the least thoughts of evil, yea of all thoughts, 
and this will be a good means, to k<$ep out all evil 
thoughts. If it cannot prevail thus far; yet you 
shall have this benefit by it, when jour heart can 
testify for you, that you would in, every thing please 
God,, and that you m^ke consciepce pf less sinful 
thoughts than those vile ones with which you are 
troubled; then you ,may be sur^ that^ you inay be, 
and are. God's children, and are sanctified, notwith- 
standiog. those blasphemous thoughts and devilish 
temptations.,. * ; . ;. . : ,, ,.ui . ...... % 

., m. Doubts pf sanctification, from tho prevalence 
of some gross sin. , ,, ., ,; ^^. - ,^ . ., .!,•., \\^ 
:. 4gtinrSQide, doubt jthey..arQ npj^ .sat^^ifidjj, J^ 
causae j^ey /have: £MIeu :.into,^^c^^p ffo^^SB ;. . j^.i^n^ay 
be, inl<^:i;irQi;3eitban.tb.^s^v^hich they committed in 
their stalA^of^uiweg^nftracj. j. , . ,, j, ^^^.,> 

I answer such: you aie in a very ill ca^e^ \( ^>\ 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


do not b^ie yourselves; and if so, you are in an ill 
case because you do belie yourselves. I . advise 
you that have thus sinned in either, to repent 
speedily, and ' to ask forgiveness. God, by his 
Spirit, doth as well call you to it, as he did Israel, 
saying, " Return to the Lord — thou hast fallen by 
thine iniquity,- — take with you words, and turn unto 
the Lord, and say unto him, Take away all our 
iniquity, and receive us graciously;" then will God 
answer, ** I will heal your backsliding, I will love 
you freely." You say, that you are backslidden; 
suppose it were so, he saith, ^^ I will heal your back- 
slidings," &c. read Jer. iii. 12, 13. Micah vii. 
18, 19. 

You must not doubt, but that gross sins, com- 
mitted after a man is effectually called, are pardon- 
able. It is the devil's policy to cast these doubts 
into your heads, so wholly to drive you to despair, 
by shutting out all hope of grace and mercy, that 
you might have no thought of returning and seek- 
ing unto God again; but believe him not: he is a 
liar. For it may befal one that is in a state of 
grace, to commit the same gross sins after conver- 
sion, which he did before, if not greater than the 
same. Did not David, by his adultery and murder, 
exceed all the sins that ever he committed before his 
conversion ? Did not Solomon worse in his old age 
than ever in his younger days? Did Peter commit 
any sin like that of denying and forswearing his 
Master, before his conversion? Why were the falls 
of these worthies written, but for examples to us, 
*^ on whom the ends of the earth are come ?" 

). That every one who standeth should ^^ take 
heed lest be fall." 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 

• 377 

" 2. That if any are fallen into any sin by any 
occasion, that he might rise again as they did, and 
liot despair of mercy. 

No man, though converted, hath any assurance, 
except he is specially watchful, and except he have 
special assistance of God's grace, to be preserved 
from any sin, except that against the Holy Ghost ; 
but if he be watchful over his ways, and do improve 
the grace of God in him after conversion, seeking 
unto God for increase of grace, then he, as well as 
the apostle Paul, may be kept from such gross sins 
as arc of the foulest nature, otherwise not. 

Indeed, they that are born of God, have received 
the sanctifying influences of God's Spirit, that seed 
of grace, which ever remaineth in them. Wlience 
it is that they sin otherwise in a state of regeneracy 
than they did before; insomuch that the scripture of 
of truth, notwithstanding the after sins, saith, that 
** whosoever is born of God sinneth not;" not that 
they are free from the act and guilt of sin, for in 
** many things we sin all," saith St. James; but be- 
cause they sin not with full consent. They are 
not servants to sin; they do not make a trade of sin, 
as they did in their unregeneracy. Neither do they 
sin the sin unto death, which all unregenerate men 
may, and some do. Yet. for all this, it may, and 
often doth come to pass, that, partly from Satan's 
malice and power, partly from the remains of cor- 
rupt nature, and partly from God's just judgments 
on many, because of their negligence and presump* 
tion, their conceit of their own strength, or their 
consoriousness and unmeroitulness to them that had 
fallen^ that true Christians may fall into some par- 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


ticular gross sin cur sids, for matter, greater than 
ever before conversion. 

IV. Doubts of sanctificatioa from the want of a& 
fectionate sorrow for sin; and the defects of lepen- 
tance» ... 

Others yet complain and say. They fear they hav« 
not repented, they feel. that they cannot repent ; for 
ihey cannot grieve as they ought. They can pour 
out dpods of tearsv more than enough, for crosses^ 
but many times they cannot shed one tear for sin< 
They do nothing as they ought to do. They live 
in their sins stilU How then can they he said to 
have repented, end to be sanctified ? If, by doing as 
you ought, you mean perfectly fulfilling every point 
and circumstance of the law, never any mere man 
^id thus; if you could do as you ought, what need 
have you of Christ Jesus as a Savipur and an Ad-; 
yocate ! But if, by doing as you ought, you mean a 
doing according as God, now (qualifying thjg rigour 
of the law by the graciousness of the gospel) doth 
require of you, and in Christ will accept of you ; 
namely, to will and endeavour in truth to do the 
whole will of God; then, if you will, desire, and en: 
deavour to mourn for sin, to repent, and obey as yo^ 
should, you may truly be said to do as you ought. 
And in this case, look by faith to the perfect ober 
dience, of the Lord Jesus Christ, your surety and 
redeetner, ... 

And as for weeping at crosses, sooner or more 
than for sins, this doth not always argue more grief 
for one than for the other:, for. weeping is an effect 
of the bpcjyi fallowing m ach the temper thereof; al^q 
sense ajiprehendeth a na ural object, or matter of 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


bodily grief, in such a manner, that the bocl^ ii 
wrought upon more sensibly, than w|)en a- spirit* 
ualobjeel of grief is only apprehended by foith* 
Wherefore bodily tears flow easily from sense c¥ 
ciosses^ and more hardly from thoughts of sin : fotf 
spiritual objects do not ordinarily work passions in 
the body «o soon, nor so much^ as bodily and sensible 
objects- do. Grief for a cross is more outward and 
passionate, thence tears; but spiritual grief is more 
inward and deep, in which cases, tears lie so far off| 
and the organs of tears are so much contracted, and 
shut up, thtit they cannot be fetched or wrung out^ 
but with much labour. When you are bidden in 
scripture to mourn and weep for your sins, nothing 
else is meant, but to grieve much, and. to grieve 
heartily, as they do, who weep much. at outward 
calamities. Besides it is known that even natural 
grief, dry grief, is many times greater /than that 
which is moistened, and overfloweth with tears^ 
And some soft efieminate spirits can weep at any 
thing, when some harder spirits can weep at nothings 
As the greatest spiritual joy is not expressed in 
laughter, so neither is the greatest spiritual grief ex?? 
pressed in tears. 'God regards the inward sighing 
of a contrite heart, more than the outward tears. of 
the eyes. An hypocritical Saul, being overcome 
with kindness, and a false-hearted Abab, being upon 
the imck of fear, may, in their qualms, and p^ssionst 
weep, and externally humble themselves, and thai 
in. part for sin; when a dear child of God may not 
be able to command one tear. The tima wheo 
God's, children. have most plenty of tears,. is when 
the extremity and anguish of grief U vi^ q^^x^ 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


namely, when their hearts begin to melt through 
hope of mercy. 

And as for leaving sin altogether: Who ever 
did it in this life? Who ever shall? Since there is 
no roan that liveth, and sinneth not. But mistake 
not, you may, through God's grace, have left sin, 
when yet sin hath not left you. For whosoever 
hateth sin, and resolveth against it, and in the law 
of his mind would not commit it; but is drawn to it 
by Satan, and by the law of hi^members ; and, after 
it is done, doth not allow it, but disclaims it with 
grief; this man hath left sin. And if this be your 
case, it may be said of you, as the Apostle said of 
himself — it is not you that doth evil; but it is sin, 
that dwelleth in you. 

V. Doubts of sanctification on account of duluess 
in spiritual duties. 

Many yet complain they cannot pray, read, hear, 
meditate, nor get any good by the best companies, 
or best conferences which they can meet with. They 
are so dull, so forgetful, so full of distraction, and 
so unfruitful, when they go about, or have been 
about any thing that is good, that they fear they 
have no grace at all in them; yea, it maketh them 
sometimes to forbear these duties; and for the most 
part to go about them without heart. 

It is not strange that it should be so with you; 
so long as there is a Satan to hinder you, and so 
long as you carry about the old man and body of sin 
in yoUf Moreover, do you not many times go about 
these holy duties remissly, negligently, only custom- 
arily, without preparation thereunto, not looking to 
your feet, and putting off your shoes before you ap- 

_ Digitized by CjOOQIC 


proach unto God's holy things, and holy presence? 
Do you not many times set upon those holy duties 
in the power of your own might, and not in the 
power of God's might; or have you not heen proud, 
or too well conceited of yourselves, when you have 
felt that you have performed good duties with some 
life, or^ are you sure, that you should not be spirit- 
ually proud, if you had your desire in doing all 
these? Farther, do you not miscal things; calling 
that, no prayer, no hearing, &c. or no fruit, hecause 
you do them not so well, nor bring forth so much, 
aa in your spiritually covetous desires you long to 
do, and have? If it be thus with you, then first mend 
all these faults, confess them to God, and ask mercy. 
Next be thankful for your desires, to pray, read, 
hear, &c. and for your longing to do all these as you 
should; prosecute those desires, but always in the 
sense of your own insufficiency, and in the power 
of God's might ; then all the fore-mentioned duties 
will be performed with less difficulty and more fruit 
and comfort. 

Yet because in all these duties you travel to 
heavenward up the hill, and your passage is against 
wind and tide, and with a strong opposition of 
enemies in the way; you must never look to per- 
form them without sense of much difficulty and little 
progress in comparison of what you aim at in your 
desires. It concerns you therefore to ply your oars, 
and to apply yourselves by all means, to '^ work out 
your . salvation with fear and trembling:" I mean, 
with fear to offend in any of the afore-mentioned 
duties, not in fear that you have no grace, because - 
you cannot perform them as well as you «\\o\x\&^ ^xv^ 

Digitized by CjOOQIC 


trould. For since you feel and bewail your dulness, 
deadness, and unpro&tableness in holy services, it 
arguetlrthat you have life, because np man feeleth 
cdrruption^ and disliketh it, by corruption, bat by 
grace.' I am sure that such as have no true grace, 
ean, and do daily, fail in- all these duties, but either 
they find not their failings, and if they do, yet they 
complain not of them with grief and dislike. If you 
heartily griev^, because you do no better, your de- 
sires to do as you should do, are a true sigir of grace 
in you. For this duly is always well done, in God's 
account, where there is truth of endeavour to do 
well, and true grief that it is done no better. 

And whereas you say, that by reason of want of 
spiritual life in holy duties^ you hkve been made to 
neglect them altogether. I pray^ what have you ( 
got thereby but much grief and uneasiness ? But ' 
tell me how is it with you? are you pleased with 
yourself in your neglect; or is it so that you can 
have no peace in your heart until you set yourself 
diligently to do those duties again, as Well as you : 
can? If so, it is a sign that you are not quite desti- \c 
tute of saving grace. Iv 

VI. Doubts of sanctification from sudden dulness a 
after duties. u 

Others, when they have been at holy exercises, c 
and in good company have felt joy^ and sweet com- t 
fort therein; but afterward, oftentimes much dulness 
hath suddenly seized upon them; which maketh them 
fear they have not root in themselves, and that their 
joys and comforts Were not sounds This dulness 
after fresh comforts may, and often doth befal those, 
in whom is truth of grace, but commonly through 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


their own fault. Aiid to speak freely to you ; it 
may be you' were not thankful to God for your joys 
and comforts when* you bad diem; but rdid ascribe 
too much to yourselves, of to the outward means by 
which you had them. Or it may be, you did too 
soon let go your hold of these spiritual comforts, 
betaking yourself to worldly business, or to other 
thoughts, before you had sufficiently digested these, 
and before you had committed them under safe 
custody, insomuch that the devil finding your com* 
forts lie loose, and unguarded, stealeth them from 
you : or else haply the Lord knoweth that you are 
not able to bear the continuance of your joys and 
eomforts, but your hearts will be over-light and 
over-joyed, and exalted above measure; therefore in 
his just chastisements, or in his loving wisdom, 
God may suffer deadness in this sort to seize you. 

VII. Doubts of sanctification on account of being 
outdone by others. 

There are also some, when they perceive that 
some new converts to religion, who have not had half 
of the time or means to be good as they have had, 
yet outstrip them in knowledge, faith, mortification, 
and willingness to die; wherefore they doubt of the 
truth of their own graces. It is more than you can 
certainly know, whether they have more saving grace 
than you ; for when with a charitable eye you look 
upon the outside of another's behaviour, and shall 
look with a severe and searching eye into the cor- 
ruptions of your own hearty you may easily, through 
modesty and charity, think others better than your- 
selves, and it is good for you so to do; an error m 
that ease, if you do eoinmit^it, is toleiable* Maxi^ 

Digitized byCjOOQlC 


also can otter what thejr have, it may be, better than 
you, and can make a small matter seem much, and a 
little to go far, when many times you, ih modesty, 
may not set forth yourself, or, if you would, could 

But let it be granted, that many of short stand- 
ing in the school of Christianity, have got the start 
of you in grace. If it was through God's grace ac- 
companying their diligence, and from his just hand 
upon you, following your negligence, then they are 
to be commended, and you are to be humbled, and 
to be provoked unto a holy emulation by them to 
quicken your pace, and to double your diligence. 
But take heed that it be not your pride and self- 
Jove, which causeth you not to bear it, that others 
should be better than yourselves. 

It may be that it is not your fault, but it is from 
God's abundant grace to others, above that which 
you have received : for the scriptures make it evident, 
that God giveth unto several men differently, ac- 
cording to his good pleasure. Hence it was, that 
David became wiser than his teachers and ancients, 
and the Apostle Paul attained more grace than those 
that were in Christ before him. God giveth unto 
some five talents, when he giveth unto others but 
two; he that hath most given him, gaineth in the 
same space of time, twice as much as the other, yet 
he that gained but two talents had his commenda- 
tion, and his proportionable reward- of well-doing. 
For the Lord saith unto him also, ^* Well done, 
faithful servant, enter into thy Master's joy»" For 
he improved his talents according to the measure of 
grace received, though he gained not so much as the 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


Take heed that your eye be not evil, because 
God is good. May not he give, as much unto the 
last as unto the first, and more if he please? We 
should rather be thankful for the increase of grace 
in others, than either to repine at them, or, without 
ground^ to conclude against the truth of our own. 
For we are much the better, if we would see it, for 
others' graces; God's kingdom is enlarged and 
strengthened thereby: the common good of Christ's 
body, which is the church, gaineth by it. Now the 
oQore excellent any member of the body is, according 
to his gifts and place, the rest of the members 
should therein the more rejoice. 
. yill. Doubts of saoctification from a sense of 
the hardness of the heart. 

, Lastly, Many yet will say, that their hearts re- 
main hard and stony, yea, they say, thai they grow 
harder and harder ; wherefore they think that the 
stony heart was never taken out of them, and that 
they remain unsanctified. . 

Know, that there are two sorts of hard hearts. 

One total and not felt, which will not be broken, 
nor brought to remorse either by God's threats, 
comibandments, promises^ judgments, or mercies; 
hut obstinately standeth out in a course of sin, be- 
ing past feeling. 

The second is, a hardness mixed with some soft- 
ness, which is felt and bewailed; this is incident to 
God's children; of this the church conlplaineth, say- 
ing unto God, ^' Why hast thou hardened oiir hearts 
against thy fear?". Now when the heart feeleth its 
hardness, and complaineth of it, is grieved, and dis- 
liketh it, and would that it were tender like Josiah's, 
R 31 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


•a that it eould taeit ml the hearibg of the word; 
this is a sure proof that the heart is regenerate and 
Hot altogether hard, but hath some measure of true 
softness ; for it is by softness that hardnesa of heart 
is felt, witness your own experience ; for before the 
hammer and fire of the word were applied to your 
hearts, you had no sense of it, and never complained 

You must not call a heavy heart, a hard heart; 
you must not call a heart wherein is a sense of in* 
disposition to good, a hard heart; except only in 
comparison of that softness, which is in it sometimes^ 
and which it shall attain to, when it shall be per- 
fectly sanctified; in which respect it may be called 
hard. Whosoever hath his will so wrought upon 
by the word, that it is bent to Qbey God's wilj^ if 
he knew how, and if he had power; this man, what- 
soever hardness he feeleth, his heart is soft, not 
hard. The apostle had a heart held in, and clogged 
with the fiesh, and the law of his members, that it 
made him to think hiroaeif wretched, because he 
could not be fully delivered from it; yet we know 
his heart was a sound heart. 

Among those that are sanctified, there remaineth 
more hardness in the heart of some than in others; 
and what with the committing of gross sins, and a 
cursory and slight doing of good duties, and through 
neglect of means to soften it, the same men's hearts 
are harder at one time than at another, of whieh 
they have cause to complain, and for which th^y 
hav^ cause to be humbled, and to use all means to 
soften it ; but it is false and dangerous, hence to 
conclude that such are not in a state of grace, because 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


of fucb hardness in the heart; for as God's most 
perfect diildrep on earth ^know but in part, and be*^ 
liove but in part; so their hearts are softened but in 

XL Fears of Apostacy remaoed. 

There yet remain many, vho though they cannot 
reply to the answers given to take away their false 
fears and doubts; but are forced to yield, that they 
find they now are, or at least have been in a state 
of grace ; yet, this they fear, that they are already 
fallen, or shall not persevere, but shall fall away be- 
fore they die. 

I. What kind of Christians may apostatize. 

Concerning falling away from grace, first know, 
that of those that give their names to Christ in out- 
ward profession, there are two sorts : 

The first 8ort are such, who have received only 
the common gifts of the Spirit ; as first, illumination 
of the mind to know the mystery of salvation by 
Christ, and truly to assent to it. 

Secondly, Together with this knowledge, is 
wrought in them, by the same Spirit, a lighter im- 
pression upon tho afiections, which the scripture 
calleth a taste of the heavenly gift, and of the good 
word of God, and of the powers of the world to 
eome. By these gifts of the Spirit, the souls of 
these men are raised to an ability to do more than 
nature and mere education can help them to; carry- 
ing them farther than nature or art can do, by work- 
ing in them a kind of spiritual change in their afiec- 
tionsf and a kind pf reformation of their lives. But 


Digitized by CjOOQIC 


yet all this while they are not ingrafted into Christ t 
neither are deeply rooted, as the com in gooct 
ground, nor yet are thoroughly changed and re« 
newed in the inward man ; they have at best only 
a form of godliness, but have not the power thereof. 

Now these men may, and often do fall away, not 
into some particular gross sins, of which they were 
sometime after in a sort washed ; but into a course 
of sinning ; falling from the very form of godlinessy 
and may so utteiiy lose those gifts received, that 
they may in the end become very apostates; yet this 
is not properly a falling fromi grace. It is only a 
falling away from the common graces or gifts of the 
Spirit, and from those graces which they did seem 
to have, and which the church out of her charity did 
judge them to have; but they fall not from true sav- 
ing grace, for they never had any. For if ever 
they had been indeed incorporated into Christ Jesus, 
and had been sound members of his body, and in 
this sense had ever " been of us," as the apostle John 
speaketh, then they would never have departed from 
us," but should " no doubt have continued with us." 

II. Of such Christians as shall persevere. 

The second sort of those that have given their 
names to Christ, are such as are endued with true 
justifying faith, and saving knowledge, and are re- 
newed in the spirit of their mind; whereby, through 
the gracious and powerful working of the sanctifying 
Spirit, the word maketh a deeper impression upon 
the will and the affections, causing them not only to 
taste, but, which is much more, to feed and to drink 
deep of the heavenly gift, and of the good word of 
Ood, and of the powers of the world to comet so as 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


to digest tbem unto the very changing and trans- 
forming them, by the renewing of their minds, and^ 
unto the sanctifying of them throughout in their 
whole man, both in spirit, soul, and body; so that 
Christ is indeed formed in them, and they are be-* 
come new creatures; being made partakers of the 
divine nature. Now, concerning these, it is not 
possible that any of them should fall away, either 
wholly or for ever. 

III. How far a Christian may decline in grace, 
and the causes thereof. 

Yet it must be granted, that they may decline 
and fall back so far, as to grieve the good Spirit of 
God, and to offend and provoke God very much 
against them, and to make themselves deserving of 
eternal death. They may fall so far as to interrupt 
the exercise of their faith, wound their conscience, 
and may lose for a time the sense of God's favour, 
and may cause him, like a wise and good father, in 
his just anger, to chide, correct, and threaten th'em; 
80 that they may have cause to think that he will 
* utterly reject them, and never receive them into his 
heavenly* kingdom; until, by renewing their faith 
and repentance, they return into the right way, and 
do recover God's loving kindness towards them 

; That you may understand and believe this the 
better, consider what grace God giveth unto his 
elect, and how, and from what they may fall : also 
you must observe well the difference there is between 
the sinning of the regenerate and unregenerate, 
together with the different condition wherein they 
^t§Bf|| wbUe they are in their sins. 

Digitized by VjOOQiC 


In the first act of convenioDy (I speak of meu of 
years and discretion) God, by bis word, through bis 
Holy Spirit, doth infuse a habit of holiness ; namely, 
a habit of faith, and all other saving graces; thus^ 
every child of God receiveth that holy anointing of 
the Spirit, that which the scripture calleth the ^^ seed 
remaining in him." 

Secondly, God, by his gracious means and ordi- 
nances of the gospel, doth increase this habit and 
these graces. 

Now, because every man that is truly regenerate^ 
doth carry about with him the body of sin and cor- 
ruption, and lieth open daily to the temptations of 
tbe world and the devil, a truly regenerate mau may 
be drawn, not only into sins of ignorance and coU'- 
mon frailty, but into gross sins, whereby the light 
and warmth of God's Spirit may be so chilled «id 
darkened, that he may break out into presumptuous 
sins. Yea, upon his negligent use or omission of 
the means of spiritual life and strength, God may 
justly give him over to a fearful declension in grace 
and backsliding, yet the truly regenerate fall only 
from some degrees of holiness, and from certain aets 
of holiness, but not from the infused habit of holi^ 
ness, that blessed seed ever remaineth in him* His 
failing is either only into particular sins, and into 
much failing in particular good duties, or if it be 
towards a, more general defection, yet it is never 
universal from the general purpose of weU*-doing, 
into a general course of evil. For the regenevate 
man doth never so sin, as the unregenerato maD 
^loth, although, for matter, their sins may be alike, 
yea, sometimes those of the regenerate, g)r«aler« 

Digitized by CjOOQIC 


Tliefe it gre«i difiSrfmice id their riii% and manner 
•f diuniiq(« 

1. Regenerate men may sin through ignoMtice, 
but they ate not wOhiigiy and wilfully ignorant) at 
are the unregederate in some things or other. 

8. Regenerate men may commit, not only the 
common sins of infirmity, into which, by reason of 
the remains of the lusts of the flesh, they fall often ^ 
such as rash anger, discontent, doubts, fears, dul- 
ness and deadness of heart in spiritual exercises, and 
]|%ward evil thoughts and motions of all sorts; but 
they may also commit gross sins, such as an open 
and direct breach of God's commandments, yet those 
are done against their general purpose, as David 
did, for he had said, he would ^^ look to his ways;" 
and he had " deterinined to keep God's righteous 
judgments." Yea, many times they are done against 
their particular purposes, as Peter's denial of his 
Master* They are not usually contrived or thought 
on before, but fallen into by occasion, or are forced 
thereunto, by the- violent corruption of the affections 
or sensual appetites. Moreover, they do not make 
a trade and custom of sin, these kinds of sins do not 
pass them any long time unobserved, but are seen, 
bewailed, confessed to God, and prayed against; and 
are burdensome and grievous to them, making them 
to think worse of themselves, and to become base in 
their own eyes because of them. But it is usoally 
directly otherwise with the unregenerate in all these 

3. The regenerate may not only commit sins 
gross for matter, but presumptuous for manner; 
Qamely, they may eommit them not only against 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


knowledge and consent, but with a premeditated de- 
liberation and determination of will, as David did in 
the murder of Uriah. But it is seldom that a child 
of God doth commit presumptuous sins, his general 
determination and prayer is against them. It is 
wilh much strife and reluctance of will, and with 
little delight and content in comparison. He never 
sins presumptuously, but when he is drawn tbere^ 
unto, or forced thereupon, by some over-strong cor^ 
ruption and violent tempitation for the time, as Da- 
vid was, being over-eagerly bent to hide his sin, and 
to save his credit: for if he could, by any means, have 
gotten Uriah home to his wife, he would never 
have caused him to be slain. And although pre- 
sumptuous sins cast him into a deadness and be- 
numbedness of heart and spirit, in which he may lie 
for a time speechless and pfayerless, as it was with 
David, yet he feeleth that all is not well with him, 
until he have again made his peace with God^ And 
when he hath the ministry of God's powerful word, 
to make him plainly see his sin, then he will humble 
himself and reform it. The unrogenerate are not so. 
4. A regenerate man may fall one degree farther, 
namely, he may so lose his first love, that he may, 
though not fall into utter apostacy, yet decline from 
good very far, even to a coldness and remissness in 
good duties, even in the exercises of religiou, if not 
to an utter omission of them for a time. The life 
and vigour of his graces may suffer sensible eclipses 
and decay. Asa, though a good king, went apace 
this way, as appearetb by his imprisoning the good 
prophet, and in oppressing the people in his latter 
days; and in trusting to the physicians^ and not 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


seeking to God to be cured of his disease. And 
Scdomon, the truly beloved of God in his youth, 
went farther back, . giving himself to all manner of 
vanities; and in his old age did so dote upon his 
many wives, that he fell to idolatry, or at least be- 
came accessary, by building them idol temples, and 
accompanying them to idolatrous services, insomuch 
that it is said, they ^^ turned away his heart after 
other gods, and his heart was not perfect with the 
LfOrd his God, as was the heart of David his father." 
Yet, there is a wide difference between these back- 
slidings and the apostacies of men unregenerate. 
For these do not approve nor applaud themselves in 
chose evil courses, into which they are backslidden, 
•when, out of the heat of temptation, they do think 
of themi neither have the regenerate full content in 
them, but find vanity and vexation in them, as So- 
lomon did even in the days of his vanity. They do 
not in this their dedined estate, hate the good ge- 
nerally which once they loved^ but look back upon 
it with approbation, and their heart secretly inclineth 
unto a liking of it, and of them who are, as they 
once were, so that in the midst of their bad estate, 
they have a mind to return, but that they are yet so 
hampered, and entangled with the snares of sin, that 
.they cannot get out. Lastly, they, in God's good 
time, by his grace, do break forth out of this eclipse 
of grace, by the light whereof they see their wretch- 
edness and folly, and are ashamed of their backslid- 
ing and revolting; and they again do their first works: 
and, with much ado, recover their former joys and 
comforts, though it may be never with that life, lus- 
tre, and beauty, as in former times; and this as a 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


JQ^t corredioo of tbeir tin, that they vaa/y be kept 
huroble, and be made to look better to tbeir standing 
all the days of tbeir life by it. It is uot so with 
the hypocritical professors, who were never truly re- 
generate, but quite contrary, as you may observe in 
the apostacies of Saul, and of king Joash, and Simon 
Magus, and others. 

IV. The difference between the falls of the sin- 
cere and insiireere. 

These differences rise hence, because that the 
common graces of the unregenerate are but as fiaifhes 
of lightning, or as the fading light of meteors, which 
blaze but for a while, and are like the waters of 
land-floods, which, because they have no spring to 
feed them, run not long, and in time may be quite 
dried up. But the saving graces of the regenei-ate 
receive their light, warmth, and life from the Sun 
of righteousness, therefore can never be totally or 
finally eclipsed. And they rise from that well and 
spring of living water, which cannot be drawn dry, 
or so dammed up or stopped, but that it willrun, 
more or less, unto eternal life. 

As the regenerate man doth not sin in such a 
manner ;as the unregenerate, with all his heart, so 
neither is he, when he hath sinned, in the same 
state and condition which the unregenerate is in. 
He is in the condition of a son, who, notwithstand- 
ing his failings, abideth in the house for ever. But 
not so the other; who, being no son, but a servant, 
is for his misdemeanor turned out, and ^^ abidelh 
not in the house for ever." 

Although the regenerate, as well as the unregen* 
^rate, draw upon themselves,. by theii: sins, the aim- 
Digitized by vjOoqIc ^ 


pie guilt of eternal death, yet this guilt is not ac- 
counted, neither doth it redound to the person of 
the truly regenerate, as it doth to the others, because 
Christ Jesus hath so satisfied, and doth make inter- 
cession for his own, that his death is made effectual 
for them, but not for the others. Their justification 
jmd adoption by Christ remain unaltered, although 
many benefits flowing from thence are, for a while, 
justly suspended; they remain children still, though 
under their Father's anger ; as Absalom remained a 
son uncast off, not disinherited by David, when yet 
his father would not let him come into his presence. 
This spiritual leprosy of sin, into which God's chil- 
dren fall, may cause them to be suspended from the 
ixse and comfortable possession of the kingdom of 
God, and from the enjoyment of the privileges there- 
i>f, until they be cleansed of their sin by renewed 
faith and repentance. Yet, as the leper, in the law, 
had still right to his house and goods, although he 
ivas shut out of the city for his leprosy, so the truly 
regenerate never lose their right to the kingdom of 
heaven by their sins. For every true member of 
Christ is knit unto Christ by such everiasting bonds, 
whether we respect the relative union of Christ with 
his members by faith to justification, which, after it 
is once made by the Spirit of adoption, admitteth of 
no breach or alteration by any means; or whether 
we respect the real union of the Spirit, whence flow- 
eth sanctification, which, though it may suffer decay, 
and admitteth of some alteration of degrees, being 
Jiot so strong at one time as at another, yet can ne-* 
ver qaite be broken o£^ as hath been proved: these 
bands, I say, are so strong and lasUug^ \.WV ^>Itvs^ 

-Digitized by CjOOQIC 


powers of sin, Satan, and hell itself, cannot separate 
the weakest true member from Christ, or from his 
love, or from God's love towards him in Christ. 
: This Strength of grace, that keepeth men from 
falling totally or finally from Christ, doth not de- 
pend on the strength or will of him that standeth, 
but on the election and determination of him that 

V. Why the faithful shall not finally apostatise. 

And whereas it may be demanded, why a man^ 
who being at his highest degree of holiness, did yet 
fall back more than half way, may not as well, or 
rather fall quite away? 

I answer, it is not in respect of the nature of in- 
herent holiness in him, for Adam had holiness in 
perfection, yet fell quite from it. There is nothing 
in the nature of this grace and holiness, excepting 
only in the root whence it springeth, but that a man 
may now also fall wholly from it. But it is because 
grace is now settled in man on better terms. For 
the little strength we receive in regeneration, is, in 
point of perseverance, stronger than the great strength 
which the first Adaro received in his creation. Adam 
was perfectly, but changeably holy; God's children, 
in regeneration, are made imperfectly, but unchange- 
ably holy. This stability of grace now consisteth 
in this, in that all who, by faith and by the Holy 
Spirit, are ingrafted and incorporated into Christ, 
the second Adam, have the spring and root of their 
grace founded in him, and not in themselves as. the 
first Adam had. They are established in Christ. 
Wherefore, all that are actual members of Christ 
•cannot fall from grace altogether, for " as Christ 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 

died to sin once, and being raised from the dead 
dieth no mote," so every true member of Christ, 
having part with him in the first resurrection, ^' dieth 
no more," but liveth for ever with Christ. For all 
that are once begotten again unto a lively faith and 
•hope, by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the 
dead, to an inheritance incorruptible, are kept, not 
by their own power, unto salvation, but by the power 
of God through faith in Christ Jesus. 

Now, that a man, effectually called, can never fall 
wholly or for ever from a state of grace, I, in a few 
words, reason thus: If God's counsel, on which 
man's salvation is founded, be sure and unchange- 
able; and if his calling be without repentance. If 
God's love be unchangeable and altereth not, but 
whom God once loveth actually, him ^^ he loveth to 
the end." If Christ's office of prophet, priest, and 
king, in his teaching, satisfying, and making inter- 
xession for, and in his governing his people, be, after 
the order of Melchizedek, unchangeable and ever- 
lasting, he ever living to make intercession for them; 
and if his undertaking, in all these respects, with 
liis Father, not to lose any whom he giveth himi 
cannot be frustrated. If the seal and earnest of 
the Spirit be a constant seal, which cannot be razed, 
but sealeth all in whom it dwelleth '^ unto the day 
of redemption." If the word of truth, wherewith 
the regenerate are begotten, be an immortal seed, 
which, when once it hath taken root, doth live for 
ever. If God be constant and faithful in his pro- 
mise, and omnipotent in his power, to make good 
this his word and promise, saying, ^^ IwUl make an 
everlasting covenant with theoi, that I will not turn 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


away from my people and children to do them good, 
but I will put my fear in their hearts, that they aball 
not depart from me." Then, from all, and from 
each of these propositions, I conclude, that a man 
once indeed a member of Christ, and indeed in a 
state of grace, shall never totally or finally fall away. 

The patrons of the doctrine of falling from grace, 
when they cannot answer the invincible arguments 
which are brought to prove the certainty of a roan's 
standing in a state of salvation; they make a loud 
cry in pertain popular objections, such as are very apt 
to take with simple and unstable people. * 

They first come with suppositions, and ask this 
and like questions : If David and Peter had died in 
the act of their gross sins, whether should they have 
been saved or not? 

. I answer, we have an English proverb, " What if 
the sky fall?" Propositions are but weakly grounded 
on mere suppositions. Should they ask, What if 
they had died in the act of their sin? Well, say 
they had died in the act of their sin, they could not 
die in their impenitence; they in an instant might 
return to God, and rely on Christ; or at least, if 
sudden death had surprised them, their general re- 
pentance and faith in Christ which they had before 
their fall, would have been sufficient for them. For 
their justification and adoption were not impaired, 
though their sanctification was diminished. But we 
must believe God's promise, and the issue will be thia, 
though we cannot always tell how, that God will so 
guide his children with his counsel, that afterwards 
he will recieve them to glory. 

Sec^Hidly, They object violently, that thia doctrine 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


of not falling wholly from God, and of certainty of 
salvation, after a man is once in a state of grace, is a 
doctrine of licentiousness and carnal liberty, causing 
men to be negligent in the use of means of grace, and 
careless in their Christian course: for when they once 
know they shadi not be damned, they will live as they 
list; say they. 

1. I appeal to ancient and daily experience, both - 
in ministers and people. For those who have been 
most assured of God's favour, and of their salvation, 
have been and are more frequent in preaching, more 
diligent in hearing, and in the use of all good means 
-of salvation, than those of the other opinion, and have 
been most holy and more strict in their lives. But 
the doctrine of these, that teach falling totally and 
£nally from grace, they being the patrons of free-will, 
on which all the fabric of their building hangeth, is 
rather a doctrine opening a door to licentiousness. 
For thinking that they may repent if they will, they 
judge themselves not so unwise but that they will^ 
and shall repent before they die, therefore they take 
liberty to live as they list in the mean time. 

2. The scriptures, the nature of saving faith, and 
all sound judgment, do re'ason quite contrary; for 
the certainty of the end doth not hinder, but exdte' 
and encourage men in the use of all good means 
whicli conduce unto that end. Christ knew certainly 
that he should attain his end of mediatorship, namely, 
the salvation of men's souls; but this was no cause, 
why he might be negligent in the means. Was 
there ever any more earnest in prayer, or more longing 
to imisbbis work, than our blessed Saviour, althou^ 
he wjM infallibly certaiti that he sViouV^ ^a^se axi^ ^^ 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


rify man, and that God would glorify him. When 
Daniel knew certainly the time of deliverance out of 
captivity, he was not hereby carnally secure, and care- 
less in the use of all good means to hasten it; but 
betook himself to fasting and prayers, that God's 
people might be delivered. Because God assured 
David that he would build him a house, ** therefore," 
saith he, *' thy servant hath found in his heart to 
pray," namely, that thou wouldest establish it. What 
child is there, that hath an ingenuous disposition, or 
any real goodness in him, will slight, and neglect to 
please his father, because he hath assured him of a 
large inheritance, or because his inheritance is en- 
tailed upon him? 

None but those who are indeed destitute of grace 
will ever wrest and pervert the doctrines of grace, 
making them to be to them licenses, and occasions 
of wantonness and sin ; so as to say, If where sin 
abounded, grace abounded much more; then, let us 
sin that grace may abound; and if we ^^ are not under 
the law but under grace," then let us sin, ^^ because 
we are not under the law, but under grace." 

But as any man hath truth of grape, the more he 
knoweth it, the more he reasoneth otherwise. Ezra 
having not only a hope, but the possession of that 
which God had promised; he doth not say, now we 
may live as we list, but saith, should we again break 
thy commandments. An honest heart maketh the 
same inferences from spiritual deliverances. The 
scripture, from abundance of God's grace, and from 
the certainty of it, doth reason for grace and for 
.obedience. ^^ How shall we, that are dead to sin, 
Jive yet therein." And in another place the apostle 

Digitized by CjOOQ IC 


John saith, << We know that we are the children of 
God," &c. but what is the inference? Is it, we may 
now sin, and live as we list, because we know that 
when Christ shall appear, we shall be like him ? No, 
the holy apostle iiiferreth this, <^ He that hath this 
hope in him, puri6eth himself, even as he is pure." 

XII. Sundry Doubts remaoed: in particular^ about 
falling from Grace. 

Notwithstanding all that hath been said, concern- 
ing the certainty of perseverance in grace, after the 
Christian has been truly converted to God; yet many 
will doubt they shall fall away. 

I. Because they fear that all their religion hath 
been but in hypocrisy, and in form only, but not in 
power; now such may fall away, as hath been said. 

If it were true, that all which you have done were 
in hypocrisy, then until you repent of your hypocrisy, 
and be upright, you may justly fear as much; yet 
you must not desperately conclude, that you shall 
fall away from your profession; but should rather be 
quickened and stirred up by this fear to abandon 
hypocrisy and to serve the Lord in sincerity; and 
hereby " make your calling and election sure," that 
you may not fall; and then you have God's word for 
it, that you shall never finally perish. 

Many think that they are hypocrites, who ai^e yet 
sincere; wherefore try whether you be a hypocrite 
or upright, by the signs of uprightness before stated j 
Chap. XI. Sect. I. 

Only, for the present, note this: when was it 
known, that a hypocrite did so see his hypocrisy, as 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


to btff^ it a burdeif to biili, Atsd 16 b^ w^afjr of ii^ 
and to conftss it^ and bewail 11, aild tb Mk fel'givetted^ 
iicaitiiy of Ood ; and abdiro all tbinga te labour td b^ 
opirigbt? If you find yc^ilf^dvdd thud dlsfioft^d 
•gainst hypocrUy, and fbr iiprigbtnedil^ although I 
^ould have you humbled foi* the rettiaindOf of hypo<- 
crisy which you discern to be in you; yet chiefly I 
would have you to be thankful to Ood, and to take 
comfort in this, that you feel it, and dislike it: thank 
God therefore for your uprightness, comfort your- 
selves in it, and cherish aiid ^i^uHdh if ih y6bj and 
fear not. 

II. Fears beeause of the d^ay df j^niee aiid d>m- 
fort, removed. 

Others object, that they drii already fallen far 
backward in religion; they do iiOt feel sd much £eal 
and fervency of affection to goodiies^^ not' against 
wickedness; nor do they now enjoy those comforts 
and clear apprehensions of God's favour towards them, 
as they did in their first conversion. 

It may be that you are declined in, the ways of 
godliness, and have lost your first love, from whence 
all those inconveniences have arisen; but may it not 
befal any child of God to have lost his first love, as 
^ell as a whole church, the church of Ephesus? 
You could not from thence conclude that Ephesus 
was no church, neither can you hence conclude, that 
you are none of God's children, or that you shall not 
bold out unto the end. But if it be so, be wiUing 
to see your ^in, and to be humbled, and repent 
heartily of it; following the counsel of Christ, " re* 
member whence you are fallen, repent and do your 
first works," (and certainly God's child shall have 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


graM M r^i^iit,) th6» j6u, ^duririg to the etid^ shall 
tiot be hfin cf the decotid deaths not^ithstaDdirig thdt 
criB of ydtirs in losing yoar first love; 

Btit it may, Itnd it often doth happen^ that a trde 
child of God doth in his own feeling think he bath 
leiM grace now than at first, when it is not so: the, 
reasons of his mistake may be these : 

Ist^ At the first a truly regenerate man doth not 
see so much as afterwards he doth. At first you 
bad, indeed, the light of the Sun, but as at the first 
dawning of the day, whereby you saw your greater 
(ghormitted, and reformed many things, yea, as you 
thought, alh but now sinee the Sun being riseh 
-higher towards the perfect day, shineth more clearly, 
it comes to pass, that in these beams of the Sun, as 
when it shineth into a house, you may see more 
fliotes^ and Vety many things amiss in your heart and 
'life, which were not discovered nor discerned before; 
-you must not say you had less sin then, because you 
•SAW it not, or more sin now, because you see more. 
•For a* the eye of your mind sees every day more 
c^^arly, and as your hearts grow every day more 
holy; so will sin appear unto you every day more and 
mote, for your constant humiliation and daily refor- 
mation. For a Christian, if he go not backward, 
'Seeth in bia advanced lifef;ime more clearly, what is 
yet before him ta be done, and with what a higk 
ik^ee of afiection he ought to serve God, and -to 
what a lieight of perfecticm he ought to raise his 
thooghts ia his holy aim, which, in the infancy of his 
Cbristtanityy he could not see; hence his error; even 
«a it ia nsoal for a novice in the University, when be 
hatb rwd over a few aystema of tbearta^ &c. tocoo- 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


ceit better of himself for scholarship, than when he 
hath more profound knowledge in those- arts after- 
wards, for then he seeth.his difficulties, which his 
weak knowledge^ not being able tp pry into, passed 
over with presumption of his knowing allt 

2d, Good desires, and enjoyments of comforts, 
are sudden, new, and strange at first, which sudden- 
ness, strangeness, and newness of change, out of a 
state of corruption and death, into the state of grace 
and life, is more sensible, and leaveth behind a deeper 
impression, than can possibly be made, after such 
time that a man is accustomed to it: or that can be 
added by the increase of the same grace. A man 
that Cometh out of a close, dark, and stinking dun- 
geon, is more sensible of the benefit of a sweet air, 
of light and liberty the first week, than he is seven 
years after he hath enjoyed these to the full. Let 
a mean man be raised suddenly and undeservedly to 
the state and glory of a king, he will be more sen- 
sible of the change, and will be more ravished with 
the glory of his estate for the first week or month, 
than at ten years' end, when he is accustomed to the 
heart and state of a king, yea more, than if at ten 
years' end, double power and glory should be con- 
ferred on him. 

3. God, for special causes, is peculiarly tender of 
his scholars, when they first enter into Christ's 
school; in like manner doth he deal with his babes 
in Christ, before they Qm go alone. Do not wise 
schoolmasters, the better to encourage tbeir young 
and fearful scholars, show more outward expressions 
of affection and kindness towards them the first 
week that they come to school, yea, it may be, show 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


more countenance and familiarity towards them the 
first week than ever after, until the time that they 
send them to the University? And hath not a 
young child more attendance, and fewer falls in his 
or her infancy, while carried in the arms, or led in 
the hands of his father or mother, than when it 
goeth alone? But when it goeth alone, it receiveth 
many a fall, and many a knock; yet this doth not 
argne less love in the parents, or less strength in the 
child now, than when it was but one or two years old; 
. 4. Although God's trees, planted in his courts, 
always should, and usually do in their advanced 
years, bear more and better fruit, than they did or 
could do in their youth; yet these, through a false 
apprehension of things, may judge themselves to be 
more barren in their age, than they were in their 
youth. It may be, you feel not in you that vigour, 
heat, and ability to perform good duties now in age, 
as you did in your younger days; but may not this 
arise from natural defects? as from want of memory, 
quickness of thought, or of natural heat and vigour 
of your spirits, all which are excellent hand-maids to 
grace. You may observe this in older Christians, 
who have long walked with God, that, in their age, 
they have these' natural defects recompensed with 
better and more lasting fruit; as with more fixedness 
and soundness of judgment, more humility, more 
patience and experience, wherewith their grey hairs 
are crowned in the way of righteousness. Look for 
these, and labour to improve yourselves in them in 
your age, and they will prove more beneficial to you, 
than your fresh feelings^ and your sensibly felt zeal 
in your younger times. 

Digitized byV:iOOQlC 


III. Fean of badcsliding aod apoetacy, from the 
oxamples of others, removed. 

There are yet others, it may be the same, when 
they obserye that many who are of longer standing 
than themselves, who have had much more know* 
ledge, and have made a farther progress in the prae-< 
tioe of godliness than they, are yet fallen fearfully 
into some gross sin or sins; yea, some of them are 
departed from the faith, and have embraced witb 
Demas this present world, either in the lust of the 
flesh, the lust of the eye, or pride of life. There 
are some of them fallen to popery, or to some other 
fidse religion; wherefore they fear that they shall 
fall away also, and that their hearts will deceive them 
in the end. 

That the falls of others should make all that 
stand to take heed lest they fiill, is the express will 
of God. It is a high point of wisdom for you to 
observe and do it. Likewise to fear so much as to 
quicken you to watchfulness and prayer, is a holy 
and commendable fear; but to fear your total or final 
falling away, only because some that have made pro- 
fession of the same religion are fallen, is without 
ground. For it may be, those whom you see to be 
fallen away, never had any other than a form of god- 
liness, and never had more than the common graces 
and gifts of the Spirit. For if they be quite fallen 
from the faith, it is because they were never soundly 
of the faith. Moreover, grant some of them who 
are fallen, had saving grace; may they not, with 
David and Solomon recover their falls? This you 
should hope and pray for, rather than' by occasion 
of their falls, to trouble yourself with false and fruit- 
less fear. 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


IVt Fears of apo^Ucy m timei of persecution. 
Lastly, Some yet fear, that if persecution should 
eome because of the word and religion which they 
pr^fese, they should never hold out, but shall fall 

^0 you thus fear ? Then buckle close unto you the 
complete armour with the girdle of sincerity, exercise 
yourselves beforehand at your spiritual weapons: with 
all watcbfillness preserve your peace with God, under 
whom, at such times, you ipust shelter yourselves, 
and by whose power it is that you must stand in that 
evil day. But know that a child of God need not 
fear persecution with such discouraging and distrust*' 
fill fear, neither should you; for this will but give 
advantage to your enei^ies of all sorts, and will make 
your bands feeble, and your hearts faint. Raise 
iip ypur spirits^ and chase away your fears thus: 
Consider the goodness of your cause. Consider the 
lyisdom, valour, and power of him that hath already 
r^d^emed you with his blood, who hath already led 
csplivity captive, who is your champion, and hath 
engaged himself for you^ until he hath brought you 
to glory; I mean Christ Jesus, who is Lord of Hosts, 
Hnder whose banner you fight in the whole Christian 
warfare.' Consider likewise the faithfulness of 
God's promise, made to all his children, concerning 
bis presence and help in time of persecution; com- 
manding them not to take thought concerning it, 
having promised to give them a ^^ mouth arid wisdom, 
which all their adversaries shall not be able to resist." 
Consider, last of all, the blessed experience which the 
holy martyrs have had of God's love and help, ac- 
cording to his promise,^^in their greatest ^^t^^cnxnXowv 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


and fiery trials. Observe the wisdom and courage 
of those who in their own nature were but simple 
and fearful. Read the Book of Martyrs next after 
the Scriptures, for this purpose; and through God's 
grace, though .you were naturally as fearful as bares, 
when you shall be called to it, you shall be as courage* 
ous as lions. 

It is not hard for you to know now, whether yto. 
shall be able in time of persecution to stand fast and 
not fall away. If you now, in the peace of the gos- 
pel, can deny yourselves in your lusts, through love 
to God, and for conscience' sake towards him, and 
can rather part with them, than with the sincere ad-^ 
herence to Christ, then you shall be able, and you 
will deny yourselves in the matter of your life, if 
you be put to it in time of persecution, rather than, 
deny Christ. For this first is as difficult as the 
latter; and the same love to God, and conscience 
of duty, which doth now uphold you, and bear you 
through the one, will then rather uphold and bear 
you through the other. For in times of trial and 
suffering for his name, you may look for his inore 
special assistance. 

Wherefore I wish all who are troubled with false 
fears, to rest satisfied with these answers to their 
doubts: and I would have them give over calling 
their election, God's love, their justification, or their 
final perseverance into question: but rather fill your- 
selves with hope and assurance of God's favour, (I 
speak still to burdened consciences) comforting your- 
selves therein ; abounding in thanksgiving to God 
for what you have, rather than repining in your- 
selves for what you want. 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


V. Fears arising from the deceitfulness of the 
heart, removed. 

Yet I know there are some, as if they were made 
all of doubting, will object. My heart is deceitful, I 
doubt all is not, I doubt all will not be, well with 
me. If your heart be deceitful, why then do you 
believe it, when it casteth in these doubts ? and why 
do you trust to it more than unto the evidence of 
the word of God, and the judjgment of his faithful 
ministers ; who, by the word, give most satisfying 
resolutions to your doubts; which also administer 
unto you matter of assured hope and comfort ? 

VI. Doubts from present weakness and fears an- 

Another will say, I do even faint in my troubles, 
and in tny fears, and I am ready to give all over. 
What shall I do? What would you have me to 
do ? Your case is not singular, many others have 
been, and are in this case; it is no otherwise with 
you than it was with the Psalmist and Jonah; do 
as they in that case did : 1st, Give not over, but re- 
member God, call upon him, give him no rest. 
2d, Trust on him, and wait until you have comfort. 
That holy man of God said, •* My flesh and my 
heart faileth, but God is the strength of my heart, 
and my portion for ever.*' Likewise Jonah ; ** I 
said, I am cast out of thy sight, yet I will look again 
towards thine holy temple.*' And again, ^^ when 
my soul fainted within me, I remembered the Lord, 
and my prayer came up unto thee, into thine holy 
temple," that is, as if he had said unto God, I prayed 
unto thee in the name of Christ, and thou didst 
hear me. When you walk in the darkness of afflic- 
S ,31 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


tton and inward difco»tent) he, to whom God gave 
the tongue of the learned, to speak a word in due 
season .to htm that is wearyt giveth you counsel, 
saying, ^^ Who is among yoU that feareth the Lord, 
and obeyeth the voice of his servant^ that walketh in 
darkness, and hath no light? Let him trust in the 
name of the Lord, and stay. upon his God," Isaiah 1. 
4, 10. Observe it, he that feareth the Lord, and 
obeyeth his voice, yet may be in darkness and have 
no light; what datlcnesa is this, but that spoken of^ 
ver. 4. namely, an afflicted weary soul, without light 
or comfort ? And men, thus distressed, must trust 
in the Lord» and stay upoti their God. 

VII. Fears of not enjoying the promises, for not 
sufficiently performing the conditions. 

Yet these poor souls (who, whether they should 
be sharply reproved, or pitied more, is hard to say; 
I am sure they deserve both)" will yet object strongly, 
* It is true, they that fear God and obey him, may 
trust in the Lord, and stay upon God. And he 
hath made most rich promises to them that know 
him, and do fear and obey him.' * See, here is a 
promise with condition,' saith one, * I must fear the 
Lord, I must obey him, I know God will do his 
part, if I could do mine, but these I do not; what 
warrant then -have I to look for comfort, or any 
thing at God's hand, for his promises belong not to 

I know well, that with this doubt the devil doth 
much perplex the afflicted souls of many of God's 
dearest children, and by it keepeth off all the remedies 
which God's word can afford, so that they fasten not 
upon them to do them good. For the propositions 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


of the word are easily assented to; but all the matter 
lieth in the application to the wound. It is still pnt 
off with, This is true which you say, but it belongetli 
not to me, for I do not fulfil the condition required 
on my part. 

Wherefore that I may, by God's help, fully 
satisfy this doubt, and quite remove this scruple of 
scruples, it must be carefully observed, that God 
maketh some promises with condition; and that he 
maketh some absolute promises, without any condi- 
tion on man's part. Would . you kiiow what pro* 
mises only are made with condition to be fulfilled 
on man's part, and what promises are absolute? 
Know that many promises in the word concern the 
end of man's faith, which is salvation itself, and the 
recompense and reward of well-doing, whether cor- 
poral or spiritual, whether it be temporal or eternal. 
These are made with conditioii; namely, to those, 
and only to those who believe in the name of God, 
and that love, fear, and obey him. For it doth not 
consist with the wisdom and holiness of God, to 
bestow heaven and his good blessings upon any^ 
until they be thus qualified and made meet to receive 

Know, secondly, and observe it diligently, that 
there are many promises in the word which concern 
God's £ree giving the -said grace of fear and obedience, 
required as means to obtain the former promises of 
good things, even an ability to perform the condition 
in the forementioned promises; I mean not such a 
power as that they may fulfil the condition if they 
will, or if they will not they may choose. But 
God hath made absolute promises to £ive mexv i^oyi^x 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 



actually to will and to do the things required iu the 
conditional promises, in such a manner that he will 
accept both will and deed, and in some cases the will 
for the deed, so as to fulfil those bis conditional 
promises of salvation, &c. 

That you may understand me fully, I will instance 
in some of the chief promises in this kind, made to 
every member of Christ, without exception. " This 
is the covenant that I will make with the house of 
Israel," (that is, with the whole church of God,) "a 
new covenant,— —and I will put my law into their 
inward parts, and write it in their hearts, and I will 
be their God, and they shall be my people." He 
doth not say, he will be their God if they will be 
his people, but saith absolutely, ^' they shall be my 
people." Which that they might be, both there 
and elsewhere, he hath said absolutely, without con- 
dition, " they shall be all taught of God." He pro- 
mises likewise, saying, " I will sprinkle clean water 
upon yon, and you shall be clean; from all your filthi- 
ness, and from all your idols, I will cleanse you. A 
new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I 
put into you, and I will take away the stony heart out 
of your flesh, and I will give you an heart of flesh. 
And 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," &c. And " not for your sakes 
do I this, saith the Lord God, be it known to you : 
be ashamed and confounded for your own ways, O 
house of Israel." And again he saith, " I will 
make an everlasting covenant with them, that 1 will 
not turn from them to do them good; but I will put 
my fear iu their hearts, that they shall not depart 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


from me." Note this also, in very many places, 
God proroiseth his blessing to them that fear him 
and keep his commandments: there he promiseth 
with condition: here he absolutely promiseth those 
on whom he iutendeth to bestow these blessings, 
that he will put his fear in their heart, that they may 
be capable of them: and, which is more, to the end 
that men might repent, believe, and live godly, 
which is the condition to which the promise of for- 
giveness and salvation is made, God declareth that 
he hath raised Christ, and exalted him to be a 
Prince and Saviour, to give this faith and repentance, 
that their sins may be forgiven, and their souls saved 
by him. I pray consider well whether all tiiese 
promises of this sort be not made absolutely on 
God's part, and without any condition on man's 
part? Wherefore, whereas God hath made many 
excellent promises of free and great rewards; as, to 
hear the prayers, and to fulfil the desire of them 
that fear him, and to give life and glory to them that 
believe and obey him, and that hold fast the confi- 
dence, and the rejoicing of the hope to the end; you 
see that here are promises of the first sort made with 
a kind of condition; but that God will give his 
people both to will and to do these things required 
in the condition, he hath absolutely promised; as 
hath been clearly proved. 

If you yet reply and say, Are not these latter 
promises made under condition of our well using the 
outward means thereof| such as bearing of the word, 
prayer, &c. 

God, indeed, commanded these means to be used; 
and, if we perform them aright, God will not fail to 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


bless the good use of these means; but this well 
using them is not in our own power, neither is it a 
condition for which God is necessarily hound to give 
faith, and to plant his fear in our hearts, any other* 
wise than by his promise; but it is a condition by 
which he hath ordained usually to give these graces 
to all who in the use of them shall, wait upon him 
for them. For both the giving of his word, and the 
giving us minds to hear the word, and tlie opening 
of the heart to attend, and the convincing and aUur* 
ing of the heart to obey; depend all upon those 
absolute promises, ^^ they shall be taught of Gjod," 
and the rest before*mentioned. 

Wherefore^ let none of years think that without 
hearing, praying, and the right using of God's, ordi* 
nances, that ever they shall have faith, and the fear 
of God wrought in them, or shall ever, come to 
heaven. For we are commanded to pray, hear, && 
and that in faith, or else we can never look to receive 
any thing of the Lord. And doing what lieth in 
man's power, in the right using the means of salvation 
is of great consequence, although it be not a suffir 
cient cause to move God necessarily to give grace; 
for I am persuaded that the best should have more 
grace, if they would do what in them lay, continually 
to make good use of the outward means of graces 
and the worst should be guilty of less sin^ if they 
would do what in them lay to profit by the good 
use of the said means. And the neglect^, ori.the 
abusing of the means,, is a sufficient cause wl^ Gml 
should not only withhold grace, but condemn, men 
for refusing it. 

VI IL. Fears of salvation, for waai.efsueh grae€« 
\ God hath promised, removed^ g,,,ed by (^oogle 


But some vrill yet say, Let allthat hath been s^id 
be granted, yet I find that God hath not fulftlled 
these his absolute promises to me ; for I do D6t yet 
fear Ood and obey him. How can I hope ? How 
can I but fear my estate to be bad ? 

Let this for the time be granted, that God hath 
not planted his fear in your heart, &c. as yet; may 
he not do it hereafter ? Sin^e he hath made such 
excellent and absolute promises of grace; will you not 
attend to the appointed means of grace^ and hope 
for the blessing of God in his own time ? and will 
you not wait, and be glad if they may be fulfilled at 
any time? Times and seasons of God's communi- 
cating his graces, are reserved to be at his own dis- 
posing, not at ours. It should be your care dili- 
gently to attend upon God's ordinances, and wlien 
you read or hear the word or will of God, to en- 
deavour to believe and obey it ; as when he saith, 
** Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy 
heart. Thou shalt believe in the name of the Lord 
thy God, and trust in his name. Thou shalt obey 
the voice of the Lord thy God, and serve him,*' and 
such like. Attend to the word carefully, and because 
this word is infallibly true, and excellently good, 
labour to believe and to approve it ; and say within 
yourselves. These are true, these are good, this I 
ought to do, this I would believe and do. Lord help 
me, and I will do it : ** O that my ways were directed 
to keep thy statutes.'' In such exercises of the 
reasonable soul, it pieaseth God to give his grace, 
both to will and to do his commandments. 

But, secondly, do not say, you have not faith, 
nor the fear of God, and love to him, tiYiwwSxv \.\\\^ 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


you have them. For what kind of duties be these, 
think you ? Are they legal, which require perfect, 
exact, and full degrees of faith, fear, and love? Or 
are they not evangelical? Such as requireth truth 
and sincerity in all these, and not full and absolute 
perfection. If you have true desire to fear him, 
•which is the one measure of the fear of God's people; 
80 if you desire to believe, and have a will to obey, 
in the inmost longing of your soul, according to the 
measure and strength of grace in you ; this, accord- 
ing to the tenor of the blessed gospel of our Lord 
Jesus Christ, is true and acceptable through Christ, 
for whose sake God doth accept the will for the deed, 
in all such cases wherein there is truth of will and 
endeavour, but not power to do. 

Furthermore, if you think that it is your well 
doing which must make you. acceptable to God, 
you are in a proud and dangerous error. Indeed 
God will not accept of you, if you do not endeavour 
to do his will; but you must propose to yourself 
another end, than to be accepted for your well doing: 
you must do your duty to show your obedience to 
God, and to show your thankfulness, that God hath 
pleased, and doth please to accept you in his Son 
Christ; and that it is your desire to be accepted 
through him. 

But I would have you, who are pressed with the 
load of your sins, to look judiciously and impartially 
into yourself; it may be, you have more faith, fear 
of God, and obedience, than you are aware of. Can 
you grieve, and doth it trouble you that you have 
so little faith, so little fear of God, and that you 
show so little obedience? And is it your desire and 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


endeavour to have more, and to do as well as you 
can ; though you cannot do so well as you should ? 
Then you have much faith, fear, and obedience. 
For to grieve for little faith, fear, and obedience, is 
an evident sign of much faith, fear, and obedience. 
For whence is this trouble and grief, but iroro God's 
saving grace? And to grieve for little, showeth 
that you long for and would have much. 

Let this suffice for a full answer to the principal 
doubts, wherewith fearful hearts distress themselves 
^continually. Never yield to your fears, wait on 
God still for resolution of your doubts in his best 
time, for it is not man that can, but it is God that 
both can and ** will speak peace to his people," not 
only outward, but inward peace. 

In the mean time, though you can have no feeling 
comfort in any of God's promises, yet consider God 
is the Lord, and that Christ is Lord of all, and you 
are his creature, owing to him all obedience, faith, 
and love; wherefore, you will, as much as you can, 
keep yourself from iniquity, and diligently strive to 
do his will, let him do with you as he pleaseth; yea, 
though he kill you, or though he give you no com- 
fort till death, you will trust in him, and will obey 
him, and it is your desire to rest and hope in him 
as in your Redeemer; then, whether you know that 
God is yours or not, I am sure he knoweth you to 
be his: this is an argument of strong faith, and you 
are upon sure ground: *^ The foundation of God re» 
maineth sure^The Lord knoweth his:" and who 
be they? Even all who, professing his name, ^^ depart 
from iniquity." And whosoever in his heart would, 
he, in truth, doth depart from iniquity. 

S3 n \ 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


IX. Fears arisuig from manifold temptolicms^ 

Something remaineth yet to be:a»Awered. Many 
say, that do what they can, they are assouUed still 
so thick with teroptatious, that they cannot have an 
hour's quiet. 

What of that? Doth it .hinder your peace wiUi 
God, that the devil, the world, and your lusts, God's 
sworn enemies, are not at peace with you? So 
long as yon have peace of sanctificatiou in this degree^ 
that tl>e faculties df soul and body do not mutiny 
against God's holy will, but hold a good correspoa^- 
deuce in joining together against the fleshly lustsi 
which fight against the soul, you are- in good case; 
I mean, when the understanding, conscience, and 
aStctious, are all willing to do their part against sin, 
their common enemy; not but that yon will find a 
sensible warring and opposition in all these, while 
you live here, even when you have most. peace in 
this kind — but how? The unsanctified part of the 
understanding is against the sanctified part of the 
understanding; and the unsanctified wiU against thfi 
sanctified will; and so in all other faculties of the 
souL the fle^ih, in every part, lusteth against the 
Spirit, and the Spirit^ in every pari, lusteth against 
the flesh. Now, if your faculties and powers be 
ruled all by one Spirit, you have a good, agreement 
and peace within you, notwithstanding thattheflosb 
doth so violently war against the Spiril; for this 
warring of sin in your members against the Spicili 
and the warring of the Spirit against sin, provetJl 
dearly that you have peace with God, and tkia war 
continued, willi.in time^ begf»t p9r&e(:peaoe» 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


But let no man ever look to have peace of sancti- 
fication perfect in this lifii, for the best are sancti^ 
fied but in part; wherefore let no man, professing 
Christ, think that he shall be freed from temptations 
and assaults arising fiom within, or coming from 
without, so long as ho liveth in this world. Are 
not Christians called to be soldiers? Wherefore, 
we most arm ourselves, that we may stand by the 
power of God's might, and ^^ quit ourselves like 
men^* against the assaults of our spiritual enemies. 

Is it any other than the common case of all God's 
children? Was not Christ himself tempted, ^^ that 
he might succour those that are tempted?" Have 
you not a promise not ^^ to be tempted above that 
you are able?" > It is but resisting and enduring a 
while, yea, a little while. Is there any temptation 
out of which God will not give a good issue? Hath 
not Christ prayed that " your faith fail not?" 

Let us therefore keep peace in ourselves, that 
the whole man may be at agreement, and let us keep 
peace one with another, fighting against the com- 
mon enemy, and the *^ God of peace shall tread Sa^ 
tan and all enemiejs under foot shortly;" and then, 
through Christ, ^^ye shall be more than conquerors," 
You shall not only hold what you have obtained^ 
but shall posaesa all that Christ hath won for you. 
And the more battles you have fought^ and in them^ 
through Christy have overcome, the greater triumph 
you shall havje in glory. 

d by Google 


XIII. The Christianas Q^ound of Hope and Con- 
Jidence in God^ against all kinds of Fear. 

Now, as a surplusage to all that hath been said 
against groundless fears, which deprive poor souls 
of heavenly comfort; if any yet cannot be satisfied, 
but still fear that God is not at peace with them, 1 
will propose a few questions, to which, if any soul 
can answer affiimatively, he may be assured of God's 
peace and love, and of his own salvation, whatsoever 
his fears or feelings may for the present be. 

1. How stand you affected to sin? — Are you 
afraid to offend God thereby ? Is it so that you 
dare not wilfully sin ? Is it your grief and burden 
that you cannot abstain from sin, get the victory over 
it, or deliver yourself from it so soon as you would, 
when you are fallen into it ? 

- 2. How stand you affected towards holiness and 
goodness, and unto the power of godliness ? — Is it 
your heartj desire to know God's will, that you 
may do it? Do you desire to fear him, and please 
him in all things ? And is it your grief and trouble 
when you fail in well-doing ? And is it .any joy to 
you to do well in any true measure? 

3. How stand you affected to the church and re- 
ligion of God ? — Are you glad when things go well 
in the church, though it go ill with you in your own 
particular? And are you grieved when things go 
ill in the church, when it may happen to be with 
you, as it was with good Nehemiah, or Ichabod's 
mother, that all things go very well, 'or at least 
tolerably well, as to your own personal concern ? 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


4. How stand you aiFected to men ?— Is it so 
that you cannot delight in wicked men, becaase of 
their wickedness, but dislike them? Whereas, 
otherwise their parts and conditions are such, that 
you could much desire their company. Do you love 
those that fear the Lord, and that delight in good- 
ness, because you think they are good and are be- 
loved of God? 

5. Can you endure to have your soul ripped up, 
and your beloved sin smitten by a searching minister, 
approving that ministry, and liking that minister so 
much the more ? And do you, with David, desire 
that the righteous should reprove you ? And would 
you have an obedient ear to a wise reprover? 

6. Though you have not always that feeling sense 
of your good estate, which is the certainty of evi- 
dence; nay, say you have it but seldom, or it may 
be, you can scarcely tell whether you have it at all, 
do you yet resolve, or is it your desire, and will you, 
as you are able, resolve to cleave to God, and de- 
pend upon Christ, and upon God's merciful pro-, 
nitses, made to you in him, seeking salvation in 
Christ by faith, and by none other, nor by any 
other ipeans ? 

If you can answer yea to all or any one of these, 
you may assure yourselves that you are in God's 
favour, and in a state of grace. What though you 
cannot feel in yourselves, that you have this so sure 
as you would, by a full certainty of evidence, (but it 
is your fault that you have it not so,) yet you have 
it sure by the best certainty, namely, by a true faith 
in Christ, and an upright cleaving unto God. For 
when you are resolved not to sin wilfully and allow- 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


ediy against God» and nol to depart froni bim« what- 
ever becomes o£ you, and it is your longing desire 
to please faim: when, I say» yon.stand thus resolved, 
and thus aflPected, then certainly God and you. are 
joined together by an inseparable bond. When 
you hate what God hateth». and love what God lov* 
eth,' and will wliat God willeth, are not God and 
you at peace? Are you not nearly and firmly 
Onited one to another ? What though this bond 
be somewhat secret and unseen to yourselves, yet 
it is certain : God knoweth you to. be actually his^ 
and will own you,^ when you seem to doubt it; and 
will always hold you by your right band» whether 
you feel it or not. But why should you think that 
you are without evidence, when you cannot but feel 
that in truth you cleav^ thus to God, and stand thus 
affected to him ? hence, if you were not wanting to 
yourselves, you might gain a most peaceable and 
joyous assurance, that you are in God's favour, and 
shall be saved. Thus much of removing the im- 


Showing the meamJo atiainJhis Peace of 

It yet remaineth^ that I should show the helps 
and means to attain and keep this true peace of 
God, which passeth. all understanding. 

d by Google 


I. Causes of Error in misjudging of a Persoris Stttte. 

Men oftea err in judging of their own estate^ 
and in like manner in concluding that they have 
true peace, or not. If you would judge rightly, you 
must know what is necessary to the very being of a 
Christian, what not ; and this is to be learned only 
by the wodrdL of God. For many err herein, because 
they think that, such aud such things are necessary 
tor the being in a state of grace, which are not; and 
such and such things are sufficient to the being of a 
Christian, which, are not. 

Now you shall find, that it is truth of faith and 
other saving graces, not the great degree aud quan-^ 
tity of tbem,^ that maketh a Christian. And that" 
it is not the. most forward profession and form of 
godliness, without the power and truth thereof, that 
will do it. 

Nothing is more common than for persons to be, 
in truth, otherwise, than they judge. For every 
man'a own spirit,, so far as it is sinful, is apt to give 
a false: testimony of itself^ David said, he was ^* cut 
off from God," when he was not. The Laodiceans 
thought themselves in a good state, when Christ 
said they were wretched and. miserable. Now, that 
yau may not err in. this great pomt, yon must use 
all good means to have your judgment rightly in- 
fiHcmed^. and tlien be willing to judge of yourself as 
you are, and of your peaca.with. God. as it is. 

I tokL you thati.the holy scripture most be your 
gnidtti^ ia.jis^ing.'wliat yau should be, and what ycni 
ati4ljn««»'ihA8ttiptiii»iri|^ly uudet^XAoAur ^^^ws 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


to attain a right understanding of the scripture, and 
ability to judge yourself by it, whether you be in a 
state of grace, from the knowledge whereof coroeth 
peace, look back to Chap. VUL Sect. III. adding 
unto them these following directions. 

II. Rules for a right Judgment of ourselves. 

1. Observe a diifcrence and distinction in true 
Christians, both in their different manner of calling, 
and estate after calling. Some are called in infancy, 
as Samuel and John the Baptist; some are in middle 
and old age, as Abraham and Zaccheus. Some 
called without sensible terrors of conscience, as 
those before-mentioned. Some with violent heart- 

'ache and anguish, as St. Paul and the jailor. In 
some these terrors abide longer, in some a shorter 
time. And after conversion, all are not of like 
growth and strength. Some are babes, weak in 
judgment and affections ; some strong men, strong 
in grace generally, but strong also in corruption, in 
some particular. Some old men, so well grounded 
in knowledge, and confirmed in grace, that no lust 
getteth head to prevail in them : also, one and the 
same man may be sometimes in spiritual health and 
strong; sometimes under a temptation, weak and 
feeble; sometimes can pray, and enjoy comfort; some- 
times not. Now, none must conclude he is no 
Christian, because he is not in every thing like 
others, nor at all times like himself. 

2. Trust not your own judgment or sense, in 
your own case. Whosoever would understand, and be 
wise according to the scripture, must deny himself, 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


and not lean to his own sense or wisdom, but must 
be ^^ a fool that be may be wise ;'' you must bring 
your judgment to be ordered and framed by the 
scriptures. You must not presume to put a sense 
of your own into the scripture, but always take the 
sense and meaning out of it. It is presumption of 
a man's own opinion, and obstinacy in his own con- 
ceits, which spoileth all in this case. And whence 
is this, but from his folly and pride ? Oh, if you, 
who are troubled in conscience, could be every way 
nothing in yourselves; if you could be huihbled, and 
not nourish this in you, you should soon know your 
state and comfort. 

I know many of you will wonder that I should 
charge you with pride, you judging yourselves to be 
so base and vile as you do. Well, for all that, I 
will now prove to your faces, that it is humility you 
want, and that if you were not proud, you would 
judge of things otherwise than you do. 

For you cannot believe in Christ, you say, be- 
cause you cannot obey him, and be dutiful to him ; 
if you could obey, then you could believe that he 
were yours, and you his; whereas, you must first 
believe in Christ, and take him for your Saviour and 
Lord, and believe be is yours, before you can obey 
him. Can a woman, or should a .woman, obey a 
man, and carry herself towards him as to her hus- 
band, before she believes that he is her husband ? 
If you could obey as you should, O, then you think 
Christ would love you. It were well if you could 
love Christ, and obey him, as it is your duty. But 
to think he will not save you,' because you have no 
goodness or worth in you to cause him to love you. 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


b not this beeause ymr would be tometMB^ in your-* 
setf, for which Christ should bestow his love upon 
you. Christ marrieth youj not because' you were 
good, but that he might make you good^ and that 
you might know him. 

But you do not see his work of graeo in you, that 
he hath made you good, therefore you doubt. 

I answer, Though it may be in you, yet Christ 
bideth it from you, because you would not renounce 
your own righteousness, and beHeve hia mercy, power, 
and faithfulness. Bring your heart to this, and you 
have reason for it, for the Father giveth him, and he 
giveth himself to you in the word and saoraments; 
then you will love him, and obey hrra abundantly. 
Is not she a proud and foolish woman, who may have 
a king's son, upon condition that she strip herself of 
all her own ^oods, and let him endow her at his plea- 
sure, yet wiil be whining and discontented with her- 
self, because she hath nothing of her own to bring to 
him, for which he should love her? ' 

But you will still say, Christ hath not endowed you 
with so^much grace, as to be able to do as you would. 

Content yourselves; if you could but see that he 
hath married you to himself, you then would use the 
means which he hath appointed, whereby he giveth his 
graces; you would be thankful for what you have, you 
would pray and wait his pleasure for more^ relying on 
his wisdom for how much, and wlien. If you do not 
thus, then you show your pride in preferring your 
own wisdom before his. 

Let it be supposed that you are not proud, nor 
standing upon terms of having any goodness in you^ 
£or which Christ should love you; but you would with 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


alliyicnir.heajrts be all that you are in him/and wouU 
be beholden to him for taking you, poor and base, as 
yott are, la there, no other pride, think: you, but 
wfaefi you judge well of youradvea, or would be 
tboo^t well of your goodness? Yea,, there, is 
another kind of pride, still as dangerous in this case 
of causeless doubting; and that is, to be. well conceited 
of, and wedded luito your own knowledge,, and to. 
your own opinion in judging yourselves;. For in-- 
stance, the holy Scriptures give you to understand 
(I speak still to such only as with all their souls would 
please God, yet can feel no comfort) that your state, 
in point of salvation, is good. And God's ex- 
poieaQced children^ yea, his faitb£ul ministers, who 
dare not lie for God, much less to ease you, assure 
you according to the scriptures, that your state is not 
as .yoga say it is; but you think otherwise, and, having 
no sensible comfort, in your own judgment it is other-^ 
wise than either the scripture or the ministers speak. 
Now when you will prefer your own opinion and seuscf^ 
such as it is, before the judgment of God's word of 
truth, andi before the judgment of God's ministers^ 
judging according to this, word, are you not highly 
conceited of your own opinbn? And. are you not 
stxongly proud? Though, it may be, you thought 

Wherefore, if you understand things aright^, you 
mi]^t have.ameaa conceit of your own understanding, 
of your own opinion, and of your own senae. For as 
you must deny your goodness, and be poor in. respect 
of conceit of any goodness in you, if you. would ever 
expect to.have any goodness from. Christ; so you 
nuiat dsiy .;your fiiwn opinion^ kncmVe4gti^wa&^s voj^ 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


wisdom, if you would know spiritual things aright, 
and become wise through Christ. 

And that it may appear that you are not too well 
conceited of your own opinion concerning your spiri- 
tual condition, make use in this case of experienced 
Christians, but especially of judicious and godly 
ministers. Let not fear eithef of troubling them, 
nor yet of shaming yourself, hinder you. But do it 
according to these directions. 

III. Directions for troubled Consciences^ in their 
application to Ministers^ or others, 

1. Acquaint such a one with your case betimes; 
keep it not to yourself too long. For then, like a bone 
long out of joint, and a festered wound, it will not be 
so well, nor so easily cured; beside the vexation in the 
mean time. 

2. Deal plainly, truly, and fully, in showing the 
cause of your trouble; not doing as many, telling one 
part of your grief, and not another, which hath been 
the cause that they have gone away without comfort. 
Either tell all or none in this case. If you think him 
not faithful, reveal nothing thereof to him : if you 
judge him a fit man, then show, as you would do your 
bodily maladies and diseases to a surgeon, or physician, 
if you would have them cured. 

3. Believe them rather than yourselves in this 
case; hearken to them, and make use of their judg- 
ment and experience, and be not presumptuous of 
your own understanding and feeling. In times of 
your fears and doubts, be not rash and sudden in 
judging yourselves. The devil is a juggler, and 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


your eyes are dazzled, and of all men, you are the 
most unfit and incompetent to judge of yourselves 
in this case, for when groundless suspicion, and 
causeless fears have, like a headstrong colt, caught 
the bit in his teeth, they will, like to other passions, 
carry you headlong whither they list, contrary to all 
right reason and understanding. In such suspicion 
and fear of your estate, you are like a woman in the 
fit of her jealousy,^ she will pick matter out of every 
thing her husband doth to increase her suspicion of 
him; if he be somewhat strange and austere, then 
she saith he loveth her not, but others better. If 
he be kind to her, then she thinketh that this is but 
to dazzle and blind her eyes, that he may without 
suspicion give himself to others. Deal now ingenti* 
ously, and answer whether it is not, or whether it 
hath not been so with you? I pray observe your 
absurd and contrary reasonings. When you prosper, 
thence you infer, Sure God doth not love me, for 
whom he loveth, he correcteth. When God corrects 
you, and lays upon you grievous afflictions, thence 
you conclude. Sure God is wroth with me, and doih 
not love me. If you be troubled in conscience. Oh, 
then God writes bitter things against you, you can 
have no peace. And when he giveth you quiet of 
mind. Oh, then you fear all ariseth from presump- 
tion, your case is naught, and it was better with you 
when you had trouble of mind. Is it not thus? 
Are you not ashamed that you have been thus sense- 
less, and absurd in your own reasonings; and yet, 
this understanding, reason, and sense of yours must 
be hearkened unto, before the truth of God's word, 
and before the judgment of all men, though never 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


so judicious. Will any bbdy ihat is ^vise trust snch 
a judgment? If an excellent phyaician £br othe»^ is 
seldom found to be the best physician for himself in 
a dangerous sickness, but will make use of one, it 
may be, inferior in judgment in physic to himself; 
(or his own direction is not so well to be trusted in 
his own case; then methinks, it should be your wis* 
dom to make use of the judgment ofotbers, andnot 
ibllow your own sen^e. 

But you will say, Shall I think otherwise of myself 
than I feel? 

I answer; Ay, in some cases, or eke you will be 
counted a wilful fool, as in the case of an ague, you 
taste your drink to be of an odd savour; before you 
had your ague, you knew it was well relished, and 
those who bring it, tell you it is the same; standers* 
by taste it for you, and say it is the same, and that 
it is excellently well relished; I hope you are wiser 
in such a case as this, than to conclude according 
to your feeling and taste; every one seeth that the 
fault was in your palate, not in the drink. Even so 
is it with you, when the understatfding is distempered 
with a shaking fit of groundless and faithless fear: 
wherefore, in this state, deny your own sense, and 
trust not your own judgment; but hearken unto the 
judgment of other men. And the rather, because 
God doth therefore comfort men, and give tbem ex* 
perience of his consolations, that they may comfort 
others in like case. Also, he hath given cbmmand- 
mefit to his more understanding and confirmed 
children, that they should comfort you; giving them 
to understand how it is with you in the matter of 
your soul, better than you can know of yourselves. > 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


Nay, G<^ hath given taimtinimsters ^' the- tongue of 
the learned, to speak a^ord iadue season to the soul 
that is weary." Should not the judgments of these 
he regarded? But, whtdi is most of all, God hath 
not only given to . tniAisters skill, to discern your 
state better than yourselves, but it is the duty of 
tbeir office to declare to you, being penitent, the re- 
mission of your sins; and to assure you, that, if it be 
with you, according as you thus relate your state to 
be, you are in God's favour, and in. a state of grace. 

I mean not that you should rest your faith upon 
any man's judgment; but when judicious men, being 
in better case to judge of you, than you are to judge 
of yourselves, shall by the word of God, and by au- 
thority from him, give you hope and comfort; you 
ought to comfort yourselves by these means. 

Thus much I have said, that your judgment raigh^ 
be fitted to understand aright in what state you 
stand. Which, if you will observe, it will bean ex- 
cellent means towards the obtaining of peace. 

Now I will show by what means, you may have 
just cause and matter for your judgment to work 
upon, whence it may give you peace and comfort. 

IV. Means to get and preserve true peace. 

" If you would have peace and comfort in your souls, 
then first and chiefly yoii must get and cherish the 
Spirit of God in you, that it may speak peace to you, 
<atid may give you matter Ibrymir spirit to work upon; 
whereby you may conclude, you are in God's favour. 
.Fer» though I grant, that you can have no sure evi- 
4l^oe^ of your :adopt^i {«ay wbatevefr can be j^id) 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


until your spirits can witness that you are God's 
chil(]ren; yet your spirits are not to be trusted in their 
witnessing, but only so far as the Spirit of God doth 
witness to your spirits that it is so; that yon are 
indeed his children. Whatsoeyer comfortable appre- 
hension a man may have in himself of his good estate 
in grace, he can have no true joy and comfort, but 
by the Holy Ghost, whose proper work it is to com- 
fort, and who is therefore called the Comforter. 
For by him only a man can know, and by him a 
man may know, ** the things which are given him 
of God." 

But it will be said, The Spirit bloweth where it 
listeth, how is it possible for any man by any means 
to get it? 

In respect of man's own ability, it is as impos- 
sible for him to obtain the Divine Spirit to dwell 
and work in his heart, as it was for those impotent 
folk, who lay waiting at the pool of Bethcsda for the 
angel's coming to move the waters, to cause the said 
moving of the waters; yet they waited, the waters 
were moved, and they that continued patiently waiting 
at the pool were benefited. Thus, if men will wait in 
the use of the means wherein and whereby God 
doth give and continue his Holy Spirit to men, they 
may hope to enjoy this unspeakable blessing. 

The first means to get the Spirit, is humility; to 
be sensible of the loss of that which once you had 
in Adam, you must mourn, and hunger and thirst 
after the Spirit. If you will do thus, you may hope 
to receive the Spirit. For God saith, that he " will 
pour water upon him that is thirsty," &c. " I will 
pour my Spirit upon thy seed," saith he to the 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


: 2.'That your heart may be stirred up to long for 
the Spiiit, you must know that there is a Holy Ghost, 
mni not only so, but you must know him to be God, 
and you must believe him to be the Comforter; and 
give him this honour and glory, as to believe in him, 
and conceive of him as the proper author of :saneti- 
fication and comfort; this is the way to have the 
JSpirit, and to be sure of it that you have it. Our 
-Saviofir saith, that the not knowing or believing 
4i«reof, is the cause why the world receive not the 

3. Be constant and diligent in waiting for the 
having, and for the increase of the gifts of the Spirit, 
ini the holy exercises of religion, as, reading and 
nieditating of the word of God, especially of the 
blessed truths and promises of the Gospel, &c. You 
must wait for it in the motions and stirring of God's 
word in you by God's means; then, as Cornelius 
and his company received it at Peter's sermon, and 
aa the Galatians, at the hearing of faith, so may 
you. For the gospel is called the ministry of the 

4. Pray for the Spirit; and though you cannot 
pray well without the Spirit, yet since it is God's 
will that you should pray for it, set about prayer for 
it as well as you can, then God will enable you to 
pray for the Spirit and you shall have it. For Christ 
saith, " If ye that are evil know how to give good 
gifts to your children, how much more shall your 
heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that 
ask him?" As these are means to get the Spirit, 
so they are means to continue, nourish, and increase 
the graces oi the Spirit. 

T ^v 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


5. If you would keep and nourish this Spirity.'you 
roust take part with it, in its conflicts with th^ flesh 
and sin: you must not resist, but: willingly receive 
the comforts and motions of the Spirit, and must do 
your best to bring forth the fruits of the Spirit, yoii 
must take heed that you neither grieve nor quench 
the Spirit; it is grieved,, when it is resisted^ crossed^ 
or opposed in any way* It. is. quenched as fire is, 
First, by throwing on water. All. sinful. actions^ as 
they be greater. or smaller, are as watef,.they do ao- 
cordingly more or less quench and abate the Spirit'^ 
operations. Secondly, fire may he quenched and 
put out by the withdrawing of wood and. fuel. All 
neglect, or negligent using of the. word, sacraments^ 
prayer, meditation,, and holy, oenferenee, and^oonn- 
miinioa of saints, do much ofiend. and quench the 
Spirit : whereas the daily and diligent use- of all 
these, through his concurring, grace, doth, mudi 
increase and strengthen the life of God in the soul; 
whence must needs follow much. peace and comfort. 

Now, when you have gotten this Holy Spirit, and 
have any proofs of the Holy Spirit's being in you^ 
then you ought to rest satisfied in the l^irit's witness 
to your spirit, your spirit should doubt no more^ 
For even in this that God hath given you his Spirit j 
the very being of it in you. is a real proof, and the 
greatest confirmation that can be of your being in a 
state of grace. For when you have this Spirit, you 
are anointed ; what greater confirmation would you 
have of being made ** kings and priests to God?" 
You are also by this Spirit " sealed to the day of 
redemption." What greater confirmation can there 
be of God's covenant, and of his will and testament 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 


towards you? It is likewise the ^^ eariieat of your 
inkeritanee," which giveth present being, and the 
beginning to the enjoyment of the blessings, and is 
the sure evidence of. the full possession in due time; 
you are^o surely God's, when he hath given you 
bis Spirit, that unless you can think he will lose his 
Spirit, the earnest of which he gave you, you can 
^ye no cause to think that he will lose, or not fulfil 
the promise of salvation made unto you, whereof his 
Spirit is the earnest, and part of the covenant. 

This Spirit doth witness to a man, that he is the 
phild of God, two ways : 

1. >By immediate witness and suggestion. 2. By 
i^cessary inferences, by signs from the infallible 
fruits of the said Spirit. By which latter witness, 
you may know the former to be a true testimony 
i^om God's J^irit, the Spirit of adoption, and not 
from a spirit of error and presumption. For tl\is 
Spirit of adoption is a spirit of grace and supplication, 
it is a spirit of holy, fear; and it is a spirit of holy joy. 
Where it doth testify that you ate God's children, 
there it Will give you new hearts, causing you to 
desire and endeavour to live like God's children, in 
reverend fear and love; leading you in the right way, 
ciheeking you and calling you back from the way of 
oin; stirring you up to prayer, with sigha, desires, 
and inward groans; at least making you to confess 
your sinS) and to ask and hope for pardon in the 
oamevof Christ. :And will still be quickening and 
atreogthening you. in4he ways jof godliness, and giving 
y;au no xest if you walk not therein. Thus much of 
the first, and principal means of^^etting true 'peace 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


2. If yon would ba?ethe iBV«IaabIe jewel of peaee^ 
then abstain as much as possible from all gross and 
presumptuous sins ; and from the aUowanee of any 
sin : for sin will produce fear, even as the shadow fol- 
lows the body. And the more sin, the more guilt; 
and the less sin, the less guilty now, the less guilt 
lieth upon the conscience, the more peaeor 

3. When you fall into sin (for who liveth and 
sinneth not) then with all speed afl&ct yooF heart 
with godly sorrow for it, cause it to be a burden, aqd 
a load and wearkiees to the conscience; but withal, 
comfort your heart with hope of mercy, forgiveness, 
and grace through Christ. Then with ail hunflble 
submission you must seek unto God, the God of 
peace, but come to him by Christ Jesus, the Prince 
of peace, upon whom lay the qhastisemem of your 
peace. Ask repentance, grace, and new obedience. 
Believe in Christ. If you do all this, then your 
come unto Christ, and unto God by Christ, according 
to his commandment, and you have bis sure^promise,^ 
that " you shall have rest to your souls." This do^ 
for in Christ only can you have peace. This true 
application of Christ's blood and satisfaction, will so* 
sprinkle the conscience from the guilt of ^n, that 
there shall remain ^^ no more conscience for sin,"^^ 
that is, no more guilt which shall draw upon you" 
any punishment for sin: whence must needs follow 
^' peace of conscience;'' because the conscience hath 
nothing to accuse you oty guiltiness being washed 
away by Christ's blood. As soon as David, after his 
foul sins, could come thus to God, bis heart bad ease. 

But when you have thus gotten a good and clear ^ 
conscience, taJsie heed of defiling it again, or giving 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


it any manner of uxveasiness; be as tender in keqMi^ 
your conscience unspottvd and unwounded, as yoti 
are of the apple of 'your eye. Sin not against 
knowledge and conscience, aiid in any cade smother 
not the good checks and motions of your conscience .^ 
For if being washed, you do again defile it,^ this will 
cause new trouble of heart, and you must again apply, 
yourselves to this last prescribed remedy. 

4>. Christ having taken upon him the burden of 
your sins, which was intolerable, you must take upon 
you, and submit ta the yoke of Christ's service, 
which is light and easy» You must endeavour to do^ 
whatsoever he hath commanded in his word and gospel, 
following his steps in all bis imitable actkms; in all 
humility and meekness, in all spiritual and heavenly 
mindedness. When you ean thus subject yourselves 
to Christ in holiness^ you shall have peace. For 
the Holy Ghost saith, ^^ The work of righteousness 
is peace;" and again, he saith, *^ To be spiritually 
minded is'peace>" that is, bringeth with it peace. 
I comprehend Christ's yoke of the gospel in these 
three things, faith, hope, and love. As these three 
are in you, and abound, in the same degrees shall 
peace be in you, and shall abound. 

^^ Having faith in Christ," saith the apostle, ^^ we 
have peace with God." ^ It is God that justifietb^"' 
who shall lay any thing to your charge? For justi-^ 
fying faith is the ground and spring, from which- 
only sound and true comfort doth flow. 

Hope will make you wait, and expeet^ with 
p«tiepce, the accomplishment of God's sure piomises, 
wlioreby. it will hold you as steady, at^d as sure from 
vm^k ^t soul, as any anchor can hold a ship; God- 

Digitized by CjOOQIC 


doth therefore giv&hope, thatitmay be-^as an an^or, 
** sure and tteadfint." Though while youare in the 
sea of this world it doth not* Ifbep y6u so tquiet, bttt 
that you may be. in some measure tOMed • tokd dis- 
quieted with the waves and billows of fear and idoubt^ 
to try the goodnessof your Tess^, and strength -of 
your anchor,. &c. yet you shall be siAYe not to make 
shipwreck of faith and a good cokiseience^if you shall, 
lay hold upon this hope set before you. 

And as for lore, ihey that love the Lord shall 
have peace: you must therefore' love God; l6ve his. 
ordinances and his people; love God with all jour 
heart; love your neighbours as yourselves; love 
God's commandments. JPor ^^ great peace ihall 
they have," saith the Psalmist, ^^ that love God*s 
law, and nothing shall offend them." 'Whoever 
shall thus take up Christ's yoke, and *follow hitn, 
shall find rest to their souls; and peace shall be 
upon them, as upon the. Israel of God. 

5. If you would have peace, use all good means 
whereby you may be often put in remembrance of 
the exhortations and consolations of God. They in 
the Hebrews were therefore disquieted, and ready 
to faint in their minds, because theyforgot the ex- 
hortation, which said, ^^ My Son, despise not the 
chastening of the Lord," &c. and because they for- 
got the. consolation, which saith, ^^ Whom the Lord 
loveth, he chasteneth." 

The principalmeans of being put in mind of God's 
consolations, are .these. following: 

1. You must be much conversant in thescrip- 
tutes, by. reading, hearing, and meditating thereon. 
Eor they wereuill written to that^end, that through 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


patiencie and coxaCoit of the script iires^, you might 
hftye hope. 

The scripturesi of God,, they are .the very wdls 
and breasts of consc^io^ aod salvation.. The law 
discovers siii,.aQdby its threats against you, and by 
relating judgments executed upon others, doth drive 
you to Christ* The promises of the gospel made 
to you, and the aecomplishment thereof to others, 
do settle and confirm you in. Christ, whereby your 
heart is filled with joy and consolation. The gospel 
is called the gospel of peace,. ana the ministers of the 
gospel are said to bring glad, tidings of this peace. 
Jt is the: bright shining light in the gospel, which 
will " guide your feet in the way of peace.*' 

2.. Be much in good/ company, especially in 
theirs who are full of joy and peace in believing, 
whose e^Mimple and counsel will mind you of joy and 
comfort, and will be of excellent use unto you, to 
establish you in peace. 

Lastly, . Acquaint yourself with God, concerning 
the course he useth to take with his children in 
bringing them, to glory; acquaint yourself with Grod 
also in praying much for peace, unto him who is the 
God of peace, the Father of mercies, and the God 
of all consolation; then you shall have peace, and 
much good shall be unto you. For it is God that 
speaketh peace to his people, wherefore assuredly his 
answer to him that asketh peace, will be an answer 
of peace, even this peace which passeth all under- 
standing. God shall give you peace, and with it 
glory, even a glorious peace. 

Thus, I have shown you the excellency of peace^ 
together wjth the impediments, , funYvetaxvc^^) ^xw^ 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 


means of peace. Shun the impedimentiy improve 
the furtherances; and, I dare assure you^ that 
•although in this life you may still feel a conflict 
between faith and doubting, between hope and fear, 
between peace and trouble of mind; yet iu the end 
you shall have perfect peace. In the mean time, 
though I oannot promise you to have always that 
fittice which will afford you sense of joy; yet God 
•hath promised, that you shall have that which shall 
keep your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus ; and 
what would you have more? 

I .thank God, I have reaped much benefit to 
myself in studying, and penning these directions. 
I pray God that you may reap much good in reading 
them. ^^ Now, the God of hope fill you with aU joy 
and peace in believing." And '* the God of peace, 
that brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, 
that great Shepherd of the sheep, throu^ the blood 
of the everlasting covenant, make you perfect in 
every good work, to do bis will, working in yoa that 
which is well-pleasing in his sight, through Jesus 
Christ; to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen." 


rtteted by W. C<ADm ac». (k^ 

d by Google 

d by Google 


d by Google 

d by Google 

d by Google 

d by Google